rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
The temperature went over 20 degrees C this week, at which point I discovered all the things in my wardrobe that aren't really suitable for hot weather. One of my favourite Svaha dresses is too lowcut for me to wear without something underneath, unless I can figure out some kind of insert to the neckline. (Or possibly go to a professional alterations place and get them to do so.)  Another of my staple dresses (from Evans) is beginning to wear out. I have had a spendy month and ordered a bunch more Svaha dresses, which will turn up at some point when shipping and customs get around to it.

cut for mention of weight + body image )

The weather also prompted me to actually get my hair cut.  It was getting increasingly shaggy and annoying me; while it was just long enough to tie up off my neck, I really wanted to get it tidier.  The post-chemo curls were also a constant reminder of having had chemo. The more recent growth seemed straighter, but I wasn't sure if it was just being pulled straight by the weight of hair below.  Spoiler: nope, my hair seems to be straight again (photos at Twitter).  I am quietly delighted and enjoying having my hair back again.

(I promptly spoiled the lovely blow-dried effect by letting C persuade me to go swimming yesterday afternoon, but my hair seems to still be straight.  Woohoo.)

rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Content note: weight changes, body image
(This one is a bit more fraught for me than yesterday's, but I still want to note it.)
Read more... )

Today's bird: Shoveler
rmc28: (nursing)
I am trying not to feed Nico except in his bed now.  I have also started trying to refuse/redirect feeding except at bedtime/overnight.  This follows a shift to never-offer-never-refuse from when he was about 18 months, and explicitly refusing to feed him at nursery pickup (waiting until we got home) a few months after that.

As a result, I no longer need to choose my clothing by whether I can breastfeed in it, which was especially useful in yesterday's record heatwave when I could wear the lightest work-appropriate clothes I owned.

I'm some way off stopping breastfeeding outright and I have mixed feelings about finishing. Breastfeeding is one of the things my body seems to do well and that feels good, and I will no doubt miss it when it's gone.  On the other hand, I have spent 7.5 of the last 8.5 years either pregnant or breastfeeding, and more than half of that year off I was focused on getting pregnant again.  It will be both strange and good to have my body entirely to myself again.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I spent Friday trying to dispatch a cold with soup and distraction. I did not succeed, so I have spent the weekend feeling ill and sulking about not being able to go running. Yesterday I spent in my pjs, but today I felt better enough to get dressed, and Charles did the honours with my camera.

Read more... )
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Nearly 20 weeks pregnant and suddenly I have a bump.  It is visible enough to distract me, though less obvious to others, depending on what I wear.

A few weeks ago I started digging out the maternity wear I kept from when I was pregnant with Charles.  I was delighted to find most of it still fits: I started this pregnancy about 16kg heavier and 1-2 dress sizes bigger than last time. Though now only about 11kg heavier thanks to TMI.  However, it is basically jeans and slogan tshirts, which was very much my personal style back then; I seem to have shifted up the smart-casual scale to more tailored shirts and fewer jeans.  And more skirts.

Most of my shirts & blouses still fit; in fact some of the ones I had put away as too big are now beginning to look okay again, but all of my 'usual' skirts and trousers are unbearable around the waist.  I have one remaining pair of leggings that are just about comfortable, and two pairs of identical maternity jeans, and it is getting very boring.

So I have started investigating plus-size maternity wear, a rare beast.  La Redoute have quite a lot that I like that goes up to size 20, and a substantial order is on its way.  I tried the city centre shops today: New Look had maternity wear in store; it goes up to size 18 which is not quite big enough for me.  Top Shop have a tiny range in store, in both senses (nothing above a size 14).  Next told me to try their Grafton Centre store, and Dorothy Perkins said to try their Newmarket Road store.    I didn't get to either, or to John Lewis as I got too cold and decided to come home. Perhaps tomorrow.  (The Grafton Centre also has Evans and Ann Harvey for plus-size, though I don't know if they do maternity, and Mothercare for maternity, though I don't know if they do plus-size.)

M&S said to order online and bring returns into store for refunds.  Perhaps I should take a look now.

I don't want to spend too much, because I won't need the clothes again after this summer, but at minimum I want a couple of pairs of smart trousers and/or a smart skirt, and a nice jacket.  A couple of the New Look tops really did emphasise the bump in a startling way; if they had been a little less snug I would have got them, purely for the "pregnant, not (just) fat" vanity they enable.

I also have to find outfits for at least three weddings this summer (yes, the diamond shoes are really pinching, how terrible that we have lovely friends and family wanting us to share in happy celebrations).  So far I know I need outfits for when I'm 30 weeks, 34 weeks, and ~4 weeks post-partum.  Tony & Charles will be wearing the same things to all three events; I doubt I will.  Last time I managed to outgrow my planned wedding outfit in the week before the wedding.  Twice.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
ramblings )
This afternoon we have been to an alumnae Family Day at Murray Edwards, with barbecue, toys, treasure hunt, face painting, afternoon tea with yummy cake and lots of conversations with other alumnae parents. Luckily there is plenty of shade in the Fellows Garden so I survived quite well. Tomorrow we're going to a Family Barbecue at Trinity which will be busier and with less shade, but hopefully will still include interesting conversation and fun things for children.

And now I am going to rest and attempt to cool down a bit before contemplating doing anything else today.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Inspired by my urge to declutter this year, I took a long hard look at my wardrobe recently. I've been vaguely aware of dissatisfaction for a while but failed to do anything about it.

First, I wrote a list of all the clothes I think I need, in a different room so I couldn't be distracted. For example: 2 pairs of jeans, 4-6 casual tshirts, 2-3 pairs of smart-casual trousers and so on.

Then I went into my room and started going through everything to see where it fitted on my list. The idea was to throw out anything surplus, anything I didn't like, and anything that didn't fit me or fit on the list. Unfortunately I ended up realising that almost all my outerwear fell into the throwing-out pile. I have spent at least the last year mostly wearing things I don't really like. This is crazy and I'm glad I've finally woken up to it.

Finally, I ended up with a "get rid" pile, a "keep until you find a better replacement" pile and a very very few items in a "keep" pile. I am slowly getting in replacements, holding myself firmly to "do I like it?" and "does it fit on the list of required clothes?". In the meantime it's a good thing we do laundry several times a week.

I think I may have exhausted the possibilities of La Redoute and would welcome recommendations for other places to find smart-casual clothes in size 22-24. Preferably home-delivery as actually visiting shops involves logistics and childcare.

I seem to be voluntarily ironing things for the first time ... ever? Last time I regularly wore clothes-that-need-ironing was at school, so not exactly voluntary. I was pleased to discover I can still do it competently: I literally cannot remember when I last ironed anything - before Charles was born certainly, but probably years before that.

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rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Rachel Coleman

June 2017

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