I was looking through my 'draft posts' and came across a half written post called 'Looking Back at 2015 and welcoming 2016'. It's a shame I never got round to finishing it, but it gave me an idea to write a whole new post by looking back at 2016. Many things have happened during 2016, and it has to be one of my favourite years by far. I'm actually feeling quite sad that the year is over and we've started a whole new year, again. So here was our 2016;
This month was full of people congratulating us on our third pregnancy. We had announced our pregnancy on the 30th of December 2015, and it was the perfect start to a new year. I remember January going slow because I was super excited for my 3D gender scan appointment and then to find out we were expecting our very first baby boy was even more exciting. I remember lying on the bed getting scanned, with my partner, his parents and the girls in the room watching the screen and being told I was carrying a boy.
As well as having my gender scan, I also experienced my second NHS scan at our local hospital. I had my first pregnancy scan late December, but I was only 10 weeks gone, so they wanted me back around 12 weeks pregnant for better measurements. I couldn't wait to tell the girls to see how they would react to the news of having a new baby brother or sister. Mia was so disappointed, and Elliw just seemed pretty confused about the whole thing.
I honestly can not remember much about February, which I should because it's my partners birthday, but it's all a blur when I try and think back. I think February is a month that goes too fast. I've looked at my blog posts written in February, and we took a walk to our local park across the bridge which I remember.
March was a busy month for us. I had the great plan to paint and decorate the girls monochrome themed bedroom. It took a while, I remember wanting to get it done a particular day but we didn't have enough paint to do the whole bedroom. As well as decorating, we planned Elliw's 4th birthday. I didn't want to plan something big because I didn't want to stress too much over it. We decided to take her to a local play centre with a couple of friends. She absolutely loved it.
In March I reached my halfway point in my pregnancy. I was also diagnosed with Obstetric Cholestasis for the third time. I remember sitting down one evening with my partner talking about baby names and we had actually chosen the name Freddie in February. The other names we had were; Sienna for a girl and Jac for a boy.
We had our third NHS scan a couple of days after Elliw's birthday, and I remember feeling so nervous that they were going to turn around and tell us that we were having a girl! We had bought a lot of boys items already by this point. It was the 20-week pregnancy scan we had and the difference in size from the 14 week gender scan was amazing.
At the start of the month, we decided to head down to South Wales for a night and then we had a last minute plan to stay in Cardiff for the second night. We went to visit Sain Ffagans on the day we were leaving, and it was the perfect end to our little holiday. It was a lovely couple of days and last minute plans are always the best. I remember struggling to catch up with the kids and my partner because we had walked so much. It was a really nice time to get away, and we were very lucky that the weather was perfect.
We were also invited to a National Trust park, and we decided to visit Penrhyn Castle to join in with their Easter egg hunt, which the girls loved. I filmed a video for that whole day, and it's lovely to look back on.
I was 30 weeks pregnant in May and just remember struggling with pain and the hot weather. Pregnancy and hot weather do not mix well. Things started to feel real when I reached the 30 week mark, but I still didn't quite believe I was having a boy. I had started to prepare myself to meet our little boy as we had most of his things ready by then. I had a growth scan to make sure everything was going well. I remember the huge difference between the 20 week scan and this 29 week scan. I could see his buttoned nose, it was just adorable.
I was really looking forward to this month because I had booked a room at the Pullmans hotel in Liverpool for myself and my partner. It was our little break from the kids and a little get away before baby arrived. I remember people asking if I should book for another date as it was so close to July, the due month. But I was determined nothing was going to stop it as I really needed that break. Of course, we went and although we walked loads and I struggled, we both really enjoyed ourselves, and it was a well deserved break.
I prepared the hospital bag for baby and the thought of becoming a Mum of three scared me. I went through all kinds of emotions as the due date was coming closer and closer. We had actually got our induction date, which we kept a secret. We both got very excited from then on. Our 4D bonding scan in Chester got us even more excited. The scan was absolutely fantastic, and I am so glad I had booked it.
This was the month I had been waiting for. The month I gave birth to our son. I was so excited when I reached the 37 week pregnancy mark. I couldn't wait to bring Freddie home to join our family. The newborn stage is amazing, isn't it? The first week of having Freddie home was also the first week of the summer holidays for the girls. I was so happy that I finally had my three children at home all together. Freddie had his first walk in the UPPAbaby Vista Pram in Beaumaris, and it was a windy but lovely day. July was also the month I started my breastfeeding journey, and I remember the first couple of weeks were two of the hardest weeks out of the few months I've done so far.
I absolutely loved this month, and it will always be remembered. I was supposed to be induced on the 18th, but I had gone into labour on my own on the 16th, and that is something I'm so proud of doing. I had inductions with both girls, so to be able to go into labour myself was something I really wanted to experience.
In August we celebrated my 24th birthday, and we didn't do much because Freddie was only a month old and I was still learning with breastfeeding. He cluster fed a lot when he was newborn, which was quite hard when I had the girls to look after too. The first few weeks were quite hard once my partner went back to work and I was by myself with all three children. We also had the chance to visit a National Park, Plas Newydd.
Elliw started full-time school, and I remember feeling so nervous as she has always been with me. Mia moved up to Year 2, and it just made me realise how quick the girls are growing. It felt strange having to get ourselves into a daily routine but with a 7 week old baby too. We managed to get ourselves in a good morning routine pretty quickly.
I started to get the hang of breastfeeding by this point. I was really looking forward to this month as we went for a family holiday with some close friends and their kids. It was Freddie's first little holiday, and we all really enjoyed ourselves. We went to stay in Hafan Y Mor, Pwllheli, Haven caravan holiday park. The girls also had their half term school holiday at the end of the month. Elliw won second place for 'best-dressed Halloween'.
Trying to think back in November feels like a total blur until the end of the month. I got the most exciting e-mail in a long time asking if we would like to visit Bluestone, Wales in December for 5 nights. I said yes straight away, and I couldn't wait. My partner was unable to come with us because of work but a friend, and her two kids came along with us.
I was trying to get myself in the Christmas spirit, but it was hard. I had no motivation for decorating, and I felt we had no time (or money) to finish the Christmas shop, which I so desperately wanted to end.
This month was a busy month. We celebrated Mia's 7th birthday on the 4th and 5th. She had a pamper party at home with her friends on the 4th, and after school, she had a get together with family. A week after Mia's birthday we headed off to Bluestone for a 4-night stay. The following Monday my partner and I did the last minute Christmas shop.
Our Christmas was amazing, as always. We spent the morning at home then we went to visit my partner's aunty and uncle before heading up to his parents for the rest of the day. Boxing Day we went to my Nain's house for the day where she had prepared a buffet, and a family get together at hers, which we visit each year.
2016 has been one of the most amazing year, ever. I'm really sad that it has ended and it's going to be one year I'll always remember. There have been so many memories in the year, and there are so many other photos I wanted to add in this post, but I would have been here for hours on end uploading them, and they'd probably crash your phone/laptop or whatever you are using.
I plan to write the same post again for next year. However, I plan to make it easier this time by actually writing and updating the new post each month because it's taken me a couple of days to finish this actual post.
So, here's to 2017...