Saturday, 17 August 2013

Chicken Fried Rice by Muma Dean

When I was pregnant with my second child I had a brief moment in which I craved chicken fried rice, a dish that I hadn't actually eaten in years due to ethical objections to battery farmed chicken, as used by most local takeaway venues. So my wonderful husband endeavoured to make me some from scratch using ethically sourced free-range chicken; he even served it in a takeaway container!


Since then it has become a family favourite and the recipe has developed and improved over the years. It is easy to make and adapt to your own taste, although it can create rather a lot of washing up. It can be tricky to feed more than about 5-6 people, unless you make it with other dishes such as singapore noodles and spicy beef (recipes to follow).

You can use prawns instead of chicken and I often use pork; slow braising a belly of pork in soy sauce diluted with water, star anise, garlic and sugar and then shredding it for use in this dish.

The following recipe is for 5 people; you need a large pan or wok. It is easier to make for fewer people!

Ingredients:

500g of boiled basmati rice
A couple of chicken breasts sliced into little pieces (or prawns etc)
4 or 5 spring onions chopped
A small tin of sweetcorn, or a cup of frozen sweetcorn
A cup of frozen peas (or fresh!)
4 or 5 eggs
Soy sauce... lots!
About 4 teaspoons of sugar
Some salt

Method:

Whisk up the eggs with a big pinch of salt and fry, chopping it up with the spatula as it cooks. Keep going until it turns brown and a little crispy. Put this to one side. (I do it like this because my youngest can't have egg so I take her portion out at the end before mixing the egg in... it's easier that way).

Fry up the chicken with the sugar and a good splash of soy sauce; keep frying it until it is glazed by the soy sauce/sugar and deliciously sticky. Continue adding soy sauce as required to get a good dark colour. Then chuck in the spring onions for a couple of mins.

Next, add the cooked rice, sweetcorn, peas and cooked egg, and mix it all up. Keep frying until it's just right. Add more soy sauce and/or salt as required.

Then serve!


If I am cooking this for lots of people, rather than frying the rice, which is tricky in larger quantities, I do it in a big bowl as a sort of salad. I wouldn't fry the onions and just place them in raw,  I would also chop up some cucumber and shred up some iceberg lettuce to complete this dish: If I make that version in the next few weeks, I'll add a picture of that too. This recipe is easy enough to make for 10+ people.

Don't forget, if you like the dish and use the recipe then please make a donation via my BT MyDonate page


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:



Thursday, 15 August 2013

The Beginnings of a Beautiful Blanket by Amanda

Well it's day 2 of the campaign (or week 4 for me) which means I thought it would be a good time to write a quick update on what's been happening with my hook!

Do you remember that wonderful yarn donation from Black Sheep Wools? Here's a little reminder...




That's 30 balls of the truly delicious Sublime Baby Cotton Kapok DK which is currently on offer over at Black Sheep Wools if you fancy grabbing some for yourself. It truly is sublime in both colour and texture and is an absolute joy to work with. 

After much searching and deliberation I decided to make a blanket following the Rainbow Ripple Baby Blanket pattern my dear friend (and crochet guru) Jen recommended for me over on Ravelry. Even though the pattern calls for Worsted/Aran weight yarn, Jen reassured me that using a smaller hook and DK yarn would be fine. I love having a friend who knows so much about crochet!

Anyway, the next step was choosing the colours. I went for a mix of neutral and blue shades so that the blanket would be lovely for a boy or girl (because the pinks really are pink but the blues blend in so beautifully with the greens, greys and purples in the mix).

Here's what I managed on my first day with this pattern:


Not bad, huh?

This took me just over an hour and I took it with me to work today. I knew I would be finishing work a few hours earlier than my lift home and instead of wasting an hour on the bus I decided to perch myself in a quiet corner after "home time" and work on the crochet instead.

It was a good idea, because look at how much more I managed to get done in my second hour on the blanket...



I decided to move away from the 5 rows per colour as the crochet pattern calls for, as I do love a good bit of randomness to these kinds of things. And I think it is working quite well, don't you think? It's always a little bit tricky when you begin something like this as you're never quite sure how the colours will really work together, but I have to say I am loving this so far!

I am a little worried about how the blanket is ruching up... it is an issue I have had with ripple blankets before and must be something to do with my technique. But good old Jen came to my rescue with a suggestion (which I have yet to fully understand and try) to see if I can fix this. I can't wait!

So, that's where I'm at right now. Working on a blanket and quite enjoying it. Big projects like blankets can be pretty daunting at times as they take so much longer to complete. And yet there is something uniquely special about working on something like this. Once you get into the swing of the pattern there is far less counting involved than on smaller, shaped items. And you know that each stitch is making something that will be treasured for years to come. You can't beat that feeling, you really can't.

I'd love to know what you think to this blanket. Don't forget it will be going up for sale next May in an auction, with 100% of the final sale price going direct to Pregnancy Sickness Support. So if you like the look of it make sure to swing by when it goes on sale. And if you fancy either donating some yarn or sponsoring me during my nine months of crochet then I shall be so very grateful. Black Sheep Wools have a selection of gift cards which are perfect for helping me keep my yarn stash flowing for all the projects I have in mind. And you can sponsor me via BT Donate below.

Thank you.


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:


Thin Fish Chowder by Muma Dean

To kick off my nine months of recipes challenge I made this delicious fishy stew last night. It is quick and easy to make and tastes amazing. We cooked it in the billy can over the fire pit and it was a big hit with the kids. You can do it on the stove well too though. Make it cheaper by omitting the seafood and using frozen fish or make it fancier with smoked salmon, crayfish etc.

Don't forget, if you like this recipe and use it then a donation to Pregnancy Sickness Support would be greatly appreciated. You can donate anything from 50p to £50 via my BT MyDonate page; every penny helps!


Serves about 6 people.

Ingredients:

An onion, sliced thinly
1 or 2 sticks of celery, chopped up really small or sliced thinly
2 carrots, peeled and grated
3 cloves of garlic, chopped up small
Selection of two or three types of fish, chopped up into chucks. ie. Salmon, haddock etc
Some prawns, I do a mix of king prawns and shrimp. About a handful of each.
A couple of smoked haddock, chopped up or smoked salmon if you prefer
Small tin of sweetcorn
Cup of frozen or fresh peas
About 500g of potatoes, diced up pretty small so you can eat it all with a spoon.
About 700ml of fish stock (or vegetable stock if you haven't got fish stock in the cupboard)
A big glass of wine (for the cooking, but you can drink the rest of the bottle)
A tub of crème fraiche (half fat if you're on a diet, or double cream if you've suffered HG for the last nine months and are now fattening up!)

Method:

Well if you are short on time you can literally put the whole lot, except the crème fraiche, in a pot, bring to the boil and simmer for about 15-20 mins, or until the potatoes are cooked then stir in the crème fraiche at the end.

But if you're not short of time it's much better if you soften the onions in a frying pan and after a few mins add the celery, grated carrot and garlic. Once it's all soft and smelling great then stick it in a big pot along with everything else except the crème fraiche and boil as above.

When I say about 700ml stock and the glass of wine, basically you want to just cover the ingredients.

Other things you can chuck in... add a chilli if you like it hot; a couple of bay leaves would do no harm; or some parsley at the end perhaps? I add black pepper to almost everything too.

Sorry the pictures aren't great, it was a last minute decision to do this recipe challenge... thought of half way through dinner last night... I'll try to get picture before eating the next one!



Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Our first walk & newspaper interview by Katrina

Sunday we embarked on our first 9k walk, to be honest I was worried that a 9k walk every month didn't seem like much, but after today I think we have realised that it is actually quite hard work for those of us that have become seriously unfit!

We chose Haworth Moors for our first walk, Wuthering Heights. This got me thinking that maybe during these nine months it would be interesting to walk to somewhere related to Charlotte Bronte as she herself is alleged to have suffered from HG and died from this during her pregnancy.




Well as for the weather we were pretty happy with it, we were caught in some rain, but the clouds and grey sky kept the hot sun away which was a relief! We are very new to walking and weren't really prepared very well today, I think we will be investing in rain costs, walking boots and a map before next next month!

Griffin slept through most of the walk, he was safely strapped in his carrier, I couldn't walk up the hills carrying him so Scott took over this duty for the duration of the walk! It was a circular walk around the moors, we also made it up the hill to Wuthering Heights to visit the ruins of a house, this is supposedly the area of the moors where the story Wuthering Heights was based.


We were all very tired Sunday night which is why it has taken me so long to update you all, but we thoroughly enjoyed it and we are looking forward to next month, hopefully we will be better prepared!

Yesterday we also had our first newspaper interview, the interview was to talk about our experience with HG and also this nine months of campaign. Look out for the article soon, it will be in The Spenborough Guardian, and we'd just like to say thank you to Lauren for all her help.

Also a big thank you to our two most recent sponsors Helen Wood, Griffin's Godmother and to Catherine Lightowler. We really appreciate your support!


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Week 1: A Twinkle In Daddy's Eye by Helen

Week 1 of 9k – Location: Epsom General Hospital

On considering a location for Anna and me to complete our first 9k, it made sense to start our “Nine Months Of…” mission where our last one ended! So here we are at Epsom General where we had some of our worst experiences with Hyperemesis Gravidarum (to be revealed in graphic detail!) but also some of our best moments as a new little family.


Week 1 of HG – Just a twinkle in Daddy’s eye

Week 1 of pregnancy was…well, totally unknown to us all, obviously! We were headed to beautiful St Lucia for a fabulous holiday with Rich’s family. We packed our bags, had wine for breakfast*, boarded a massive plane, swigged free alcohol, watched movies and larked around at 33,000ft before easing ourselves gently into “Island time” with a welcome cocktail and cheeky dip in our private pool sandwiched between the Pitons! And so the week continued with much of the same… Ahhh!

* I stand by my strongly held belief that airports do not have time zones.


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Week 1 – Pecan and apple tart by Sophie

After a hastily-penned first blog, now is a good time to better introduce myself, husband Tom and daughter Merryn. My interest and support for PSS is due to many different reasons: firstly as I watched my good friend Caitlin struggle bravely through three pregnancies with severe HG and become passionate about supporting and helping women with their own battle and educating health professions to ensure better care is given to other HG sufferers; also as a healthcare worker myself I have been interested in finding out more information so I can provide better care. Little did I know that this time last year I was about to embark upon my own journey of pregnancy sickness and use the support of the PSS network myself. Tom, who supported me throughout the tough times, and I are now able to enjoy our beautiful smiley 3-month-old daughter Merryn but are all too aware of the physical and emotional strain that HG causes.


For our first weeks’ bake for nine months of we chose a pecan and apple tart. We were entertaining Tom’s sister and her partner (down from Manchester) and my cousin and her husband joined us for dinner on Saturday night. Cousin Charlie often brings dessert so we asked if they could just bring their lovely selves and donate money for the tart! Merryn and I did the shopping on the Thursday before the arrival of guests, then after being out for the day on Saturday Tom and I did a team effort on the baking front – whilst Auntie Ellen entertained little Merryn. We had a lovely meal, Merryn slept beautifully, the tart went down a storm and donations were made! It’s always a gamble to serve something you have never cooked before but it worked well and I would certainly bake it again. If you like the look of the dish – or any subsequent creations – and would like a go yourself, please post a request for the recipe and, if you can, make a small contribution at the same time!



Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Tinto Hill... More like mountain! by Emilie

Yesterday I completed my first hill walk!! I am not going to lie... I found it really hard!
We (me + Richard) dropped the kids off with the baby sitters around 10am and headed to Tinto Hill, which is 2320 feet high. Richard was the one who suggested Tinto Hill as my first hill walk as apparently it's an 'easy one to start with'... I think for future reference I'll do more research into the next one and see for myself just how suitable it is for an overweight, super unfit mum of two!

We started off quite well with a good pace, we even over took 3 walkers - I was quite smug at this point. But then the gradient got bigger and I suddenly realised just how unfit I was! I think it's fair to say, from this point on, I moaned and complained whole way. I was pink cheeked and sweaty and probably swore more in those two hours than I have since having Fergus in 2009. I could hardly speak at first and honestly hated all the people passing us on the way down with their cheery 'good mornings'. I just wanted to cause them pain and tell them to stop being so smug! I thought to myself this is definite karma.

Once I actually caught my breath and was able to speak again, I realised how amazing the view was and what great company I had. I think in that moment I realised how lucky I was to have such a loyal, patient husband. We spoke about why I was walking this hill and why I plan to walk many more along with running and eventually walking the west highland way.

During my pregnancy with Murphy, almost exactly 12 months ago to the day I was in hospital for the second time for IV fluids. Richard was working a full time job and Fergus was (thankfully) in nursery, I was being sick up to 40 times a day and nothing was staying down, not even a sip of water. Every smell I could smell would set my stomach churning and the sight of anything bold would make me wretch. I wasn't able to read, be it emails, books, magazines, just the concentration it took to read or look at the pictures would cause the nausea to be come uncontrollable and almost certainly result in vomiting. While talking to Richard he discussed how climbing this 'mountain' with me was much like dealing with me during the worst times of HG. I couldn't look at him while grasping for breath, or have him near me while struggling to walk the steep gradient, I didn't want him touching me and everything he said just plain pissed me off. During HG it was much the same, I couldn't look him when I was bad as it would trigger the nausea, I couldn't have him near me as the smell of him (not that it is ever bad) would make me vomit, if he touched me it would only make me cry as all I longed for was a hug, but even that would make me vomit, then the crying would only ever make the vomiting worse and if he spoke to me I would only ever be able to give one worded answers - I can't even explain how it was impossible to talk while suffering so badly. I think the easiest way to put it would be to imagine you are incredibly drunk with your head over a sick bowl, with your eyes shut because the room is spinning and you know you're going to be sick. Well now think about how it feels when someone talks to you, you just don't have the energy to talk right? Well that is what its like.

Thinking about how amazing Richard is and how lucky I am to have him as my husband really spurred me on to get to the top. HG can destroy relationships, it is the woman who have to go through it and it truly is relentless but it's the husbands, partners and families that have to carry on living while caring for their loved ones and I don't feel they get enough credit for it.

Like I mentioned before, Richard was working full time, he would be up all night with me being sick, holding my hair and rubbing my back, he would then get up in the morning and empty my sick bucket, then he would get Fergus up and dressed ready for nursery, probably missing breakfast himself then go and work a full day. He would pick Fergus up on his way home from work, he would empty my sick bucket as soon as he got in then start on dinner for himself and Fergus while also caring for me, doing the housework and keeping Fergus entertained. I know people would argue that he was the one that got me pregnant and what would I expect, but there are men out there who can't handle it and as a result the relationship breaks down. I feel as though I'm one of the lucky ones.


Once we reached the top I had such a huge sense of achievement, I was grinning from ear to ear and was totally blown away by the view we had. We sat at the top, ate our lunch and phoned the babysitters to make sure the boys weren't playing up - Not that we were in a position to do anything if they were!

Standing at the top ready to head back down again I thought how it was much like an HG pregnancy in the respect that its an uphill struggle to bake the baby, then once you get to the top and the baby has arrived; then comes the easy part - heading back down again and caring for a newborn, HG free!


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Month 1 - Lunch Bags by Bunny Bumpkin

If you read our first blog you will know that we are raising money for Pregnancy Sickness Support as part of their 'Nine Months of....' campaign.

Each month we are launching a new product and for every item we sell we are donating 10% of the sales price to PSS.

With September approaching we decided to launch two new lunch bags as these are ideal for children starting play group, nursery or primary school.

For football crazy little boys we have this vintage football lunch bag with drinks bottle. Click on the link below for more information.
Vintage Football Lunch Bag and Drinks Bottle


For little girls we have this gorgeous butterfly swirls lunch bag with drinks bottle. Click on the link below for more information.

Butterfly Swirls Lunch Bag and Drinks Bottle

You get the lunch bag and bottle for just £9.90 and 99 pence of this will go to PSS. Delivery within the UK is free. 

To see other products that are raising money for this campaign visit the PSS products section of our website

Follow our blog to see which products we add over the coming months.


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

The start of buns in the oven... by Sophie

Hello everyone, this is Sophie, Tom and baby Merryn with our maiden blog!

We are embarking upon nine months of baking once a week and selling our wares to raise money.

We shall be dusting off our cookbooks and flour-dusting our hands, extending our baking skills and doing some good!

Good recipes always welcome!

S&T&M


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:


Weeks 1-3 by Amanda

Well, as I started my challenge a few weeks early (so that I have time to list all the items for sale in time for an auction on 15th May) I am now in week 4 of my challenge and have a bit of catching up to do on the blog.

I've decided the best way to do this is provide you with an overview, and if you want more details of the patterns and yarn used then please do visit my personal blog.


So without further ado, here are the items I have been working on these past 3 weeks...



So that's Hopper the Bunny, A Lady's Sun Hat, 2 May Roses, A Child's Handbag and a Baby's Sun Hat.

I've also just received my yarn donation (30 balls of yarn!!) from the wonderful Black Sheep Wools. I am dreaming up colour combinations and trying to decide what to create from this beautiful yarn. 

This is my first play with the colours, a girl and boy mix with two colours spare for smaller projects. 

I must dash now as I have patterns to look through, projects to finish, and more bits and pieces to sort out. I'll be back soon with another update, so stay tuned.


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

First day of the campaign by Katrina

Well yesterday was the official launch date for the Nine Months Of campaign, and what an exciting first day it was! Sponsorships are already coming in, thank you to Ben Hutchinson, one of Griffin's godfathers; Heather Miranda, a fellow PSS volunteer; and also Preyesh Lala, one of Scott's new colleagues. I've also arranged an interview with our local newspaper, neither of us have done an interview before and must admit I am a little nervous, however very excited!

I've spent some time this morning reflecting over the past two years and how far our little family has come. Scott and I married on April Fools Day of all days in 2011, on the day straight after signing our marriage certificate we both also signed name change deeds, we decided to share each others names and become "the Wallbridge-Nichols family", this was just the start of our plans together, we were also planning to have children at this time, two ideally, but obviously we knew nothing of HG...

You see everyone tells you that once your baby is in your arms you forget the horrors of your pregnancy, but my pregnancy was no ordinary pregnancy.... Just imagine vomiting 20-40 times every single day continually for eight months straight, nausea so extreme your body is practically paralysed. Lying there in bed at home or at hospital all day and night, scared to breathe in too deeply incase it causes you to vomit again. So weak you are completely dependant on others. every minute feels like an hour and you cant understand why those people that are meant to care and friends never contact you anymore. you feel so alone, so isolated and so frightened.

unfortunately I struggled to find health professionals that knew much about HG and often found myself in hospital with nurses shouting at me and forcing me to drink more water, which i would just vomit straight back up causing so much more pain. When the HG was over along came PTSD, post traumatic stress disorder, another lonely and misunderstood condition to deal with. You do survive, you do get through it all, but it does change you, it makes you stronger, and you never ever forget a single tiny detail. Scott and I didn't have the easiest first two years of marriage, but we got through it all together and it has made us stronger.


I sit here now watching Griffin playing, laughing and smiling, and my heart melts. I still to this day watch him and wonder how is it possible that a little person so precious, loving, funny and gorgeous can be ours, can have survived the horrors of HG!

After Griffin was born Scott and I were certain we would not have anymore children, we accepted we just couldn't go through all that again. But then something happened.... I found Pregnancy Sickness Support. The charity has a wealth of knowledge around HG and so much wonderful support. They have lots of information and advice for couples that are wanting to extend their family and try again. PSS and Griffin being just his amazing adorable self are the two reasons we feel that maybe, just maybe we can consider another some day...

Well we are planning our first walk which will be this Sunday 11th August. We have decided to walk the Haworth Moor & Top Withins walk first, so we will be visiting the "Wuthering Heights Moor". We plan to take lots of photos so we will be sharing the details with you all when we return!

Don't forget to check out our fundraising page. If everyone donated just 50p it would be so amazing!


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:



What and why? by Muma Dean


As most people who have ever met me either in person or in cyberspace know... I suffered Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) in all three of my long and torturous pregnancies. I've long since dedicated virtually all of my time, both spare and not spare, to raising awareness about HG and helping to run Pregnancy Sickness Support, the only national charity providing support and information to women with hyperemesis and general nausea and vomiting in pregnancy. Together with the trustees and our incredible team of volunteers we have pioneered a support network, conducted research surveys, developed care plans and provided education to healthcare professionals.

What is hyperemesis gravidarum I hear you ask? (well those of you who don't know me)... HG is a severe complication of pregnancy in which a woman is unable to keep down food or fluid sufficient to maintain health. Literally throwing up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for months and months. I suffered particularly badly in my first two pregnancies and less so in my third thanks to the pre-emptive treatment advocated by Pregnancy Sickness Support. I was sick about 2,000 times in my first two pregnancies, lost a vast amount of weight and was hospitalised for IV fluids. I kind of got off lightly though... before IV fluids were invented hyperemesis was the leading cause of death in early pregnancy!

So what am I doing this time to raise awareness and money? In the last 6 years I have spent a total of 27 months barely able to eat and throwing up most of what I did manage. When you have HG food actually smells and tastes bad too and you feel like you've been poisoned as soon as it hits your stomach. But the moment my babies got out of me... WOW did food taste good! When my second son Patrick was just two days old my husband took me to a nearby restaurant on the beach and I had a surf and turf... fillet steak, half a lobster and fries... it was the best meal of my life to date! My passion for good food and cooking has grown exponentially with my long months of regurgitation and I now consider myself to be a fairly accomplished cook. So, for my nine months of... challenge I will be cooking and blogging my favourite recipes to share with you all.


Bare in mind please that I have three small children so we're not talking cordon bleu here. I also often have a house full of other random guests and friends so most recipes are good for cooking en mass. That said, we often have friends round for quite suppers so they'll be a few like that. We cook a lot outdoors, over a campfire mainly so there will be lots of one pot campfire stuff but it's easily transferable to indoors. We are also travelling from next February (more on that here) and enjoy international cuisine, particularly Chinese so expect some culturally diverse dishes.

I'll aim for one a week, so 40 in total, but there will be times that I can't do a week so will two the week before or after (for example when I'm out of touch in the Colorado Rockies next spring). If at the end of the nine months it's been popular than I'll consider consolidating it all into a purchasable book. In the meantime, if you enjoy my recipes and find them useful then please make a donation to Pregnancy Sickness Support via my BT MyDonate page.

As a final word of warning... I'm not great at following recipes myself and generally just make things up as I go along or heavily adapt recipes from books so in a lot of cases quantities may be vague and ingredients are often swappable for alternatives... I'll try my best to be specific but please feel free to ask questions if I'm not clear on things.


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

Nine months of getting fit... My reasons why by Emilie

When planning our second pregnancy my husband and I discussed how I may be sick again, like I was with Fergus (Now 3), but even if I was I would carry on working right up till I was due. I would also remain eating healthily, I would still walk the 20 mins to work and back every day and make it to the pool for a swim when I could.

Pah! Fools!

I found myself feeling nauseous within a week of officially trying and the day after the positive pregnancy test I remember sitting at my desk at work and reading my emails. This was making me feel worse, so I thought I would make a cup of tea... That came out of my nose no sooner had it hit my stomach! Initially I thought 'ooooooh, I'm officially pregnant now!' and I was a little excited through the constant sicky feeling. I managed to keep it to myself for a day or so (or so I thought!) sneakily running to the loo when I was needing to be sick, until I was too exhausted to carry on. I was in the works kitchen one morning making a cuppa before starting work and I just felt rubbish and poor Shirley, who was also making tea at the same time, had to cope with me in floods of tears, crying for my mum - Lucky for her another girl came in who was far more qualified to cope with this kind of situation! I went home half way into the morning, my husband came to pick me up in his works van and I couldn't speak to him through the nausea. I got home, went straight to bed and slept for the rest of the day.

We were due to go to Wales for a big family holiday the following week for my parents 30th wedding anniversary and my Dads 60th. I managed to make it down there! But that was all I managed. The nausea took over while I was there and I barely made it out of the cold darkened room we were sleeping in, I have no idea how we made it back up the road to Glasgow!

Once back the sickness had well and truly got a grip and nothing was staying down, the smallest sip of water would cause me to vomit so hard there was streaks of blood in the phlegm and bile I was bringing back up. I was signed off work 5 weeks into my pregnancy, I was admitted to hospital at 8 weeks for IV fluids due to dehydration, then again at 12 weeks, it was only then I was prescribed the anti sickness tablets that helped to keep the sickness under control. I was admitted to hospital for IV fluids once with Fergus back in 2009 and I continued to be sick throughout the entire pregnancy with him but not once was I diagnosed with having Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG). Luckily I was diagnosed with this on my first trip to my GP at 5 weeks pregnant, straight away Richard (Wonderful Hubby) got on the internet and found Pregnancy Sickness Support (PSS), I got in touch around 7 weeks pregnant and from then on I received the support and help I needed to be able to see this pregnancy through.

I had days where I wanted to give up and screamed at Richard to end it all, I was so dehydrated at times I didn't have any tears to cry and I had such little strength I couldn't hold my own body weight. I made it into the sitting room one day (forgetting to take my sick bucket!) but couldn't make it back to my bed, I laid on the floor for around 4 hours waiting for Richard to come home to help me back. I lost 3 1/2 Stone by the end of the first trimester.

I received daily support from Heather, a volunteer from Pregnancy Sickness Support, until after Murphy was born. She gave me the strength to get through every day and prevented me from feeling so alone and isolated. We tell Murphy that she is his fairy god mother because I honestly couldn't tell you if he would be here if it wasn't for Heather and her tremendous support and advice. This is the reason why I now volunteer for Pregnancy Sickness Support and why I am taking part in this campaign to raise money and awareness for the charity. I hate the thought of any new mum to be feeling so poorly, alone, isolated and misunderstood at what should be one of the most happiest and exciting times of their lives.

I wanted to keep fit and have a healthy pregnancy but HG stole that from me, this is why I have decided to get fit for my 'Nine months of...' challenge. As part of my challenge I am setting myself a weight loss target, I'm hoping to be able to run a 5k, leading on to 10k and will be completing at least one hill walk a month. My ultimate goal is to, at the end of it, be able to walk the West Highland Way with my husband.

Please help keep me going by donating! 


Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:



Here we go... by Marilisa

Swim. Bike. Run. Panic. Whose idea was this, anyway? For the next nine months, I will be attempting to train for a triathlon for the first time. I can hardly run for a bus, have dodgy knees, haven't been on a bike in over five years, and cause traffic jams in the slow lane of the pool, so this is not exactly a natural choice for me.

I know, though, that however hard it is, it will still be easier than dealing with nine months of hyperemesis gravidarum. While I was pregnant, even stepping out of the front door was a challenge; I was physically weak and exhausted from constant nausea, and felt isolated and often misunderstood.


Pregnancy Sickness Support offers invaluable help to women dealing with pregnancy sickness and their families, and helps to raise awareness and understanding of the condition. I hope that putting myself through the challenge of a triathlon will help raise awareness and funds for Pregnancy Sickness Support to continue their vital work.



Please support our 'nine months of…' campaign by donating here:

9 months of donating profits with Bunny Bumpkin

My name is Crysta Burridge and I am the owner of Bunny Bumpkin Maternity, Nursing & Baby. I decided to support Pregnancy Sickness Support because it is a charity very close to my heart as I experienced Hyperemesis in both of my pregnancies.  I spent much of both those pregnancies in and out of hospital, severely dehydrated and wondering how on earth I would ever make it through those two periods of my life.  The battle to get the right medication only added to the challenge of getting through those very dark months. Education and awareness is needed to improve the care for women who suffer this awful condition at a time that should be one of the most wonderful experiences in a woman’s life.  This is why I am a volunteer with Pregnancy Sickness Support who do a fantastic job in supporting women who need help. PSS give Hyperemesis sufferers someone to talk to who truly understands what they are going through.

My HG babies - Jake & Millie

How I will raise money for Pregnancy Sickness Support

At the moment my business already donates 10% of the sale price for three items in our web store and Ebay shop to PSS. During the nine months of the campaign, we will launch nine additional products to the web store: www.bunnybumpkin.com.  We will consecutively launch the same products on our Ebay shop and donate 10% of the sale price for each sale through these outlets to Pregnancy Sickness Support.

bunny bumpkin
Bunny Bumpkin
Maternity, Nursing & Baby

About Bunny Bumpkin

Bunny Bumpkin is the one stop online shop for everything a mum needs from the time she is pregnant until her child goes to nursery. We sell maternity and nursing clothes, baby clothes, breastfeeding accessories, potty training products, bibs and feeding accessories, teethers, reins and much more.

How you can help Pregnancy Sickness Support

If you are pregnant, nursing or have a baby or toddler, Bunny Bumpkin is sure to have something you will need. Save yourself a trip into town and buy what you need from Bunny Bumpkin. Our prices are competitive, delivery is free within the UK and 10% of what you pay will be donated to PSS.

The products that contribute to PSS can be found here.

Also you can help spread the word by liking us on facebook and sharing our posts about PSS. Or you can follow us on twitter


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First Blog Ever! by Katrina

After spending nine months confined to my bed or a hospital bed with relentless vomiting and nausea we have decided to set a family challenge to walk 9k every month for nine months. Whilst suffering with Hyperemesis Gravidarum i couldn't walk a single step without someone holding me up. HG is a cruel illness that takes so much away from you, but gave Scott and I so much more with our beautiful boy!

Our HG hero, Griffin, is 15 months now and very close to walking so I'm sure he will do his best to join in! We are hoping to visit somewhere different for each walk. There will be lots of updates and pictures from the three of us too!

If you'd like to sponsor us that would be wonderful and greatly appreciated by all of us at Pregnancy Sickness Support. You can find the link to our fundraising page here.

Katrina, Scott & Griffin


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My Introduction! by Amanda

Hi, I'm Amanda and I'm wife to TJ and mummy to Little Man (born September 2011).


Why I support Pregnancy Sickness Support

I suffered from severe pregnancy sickness, possibly undiagnosed Hyperemesis Gravidarum (based upon indicators such as weight loss of more than 10% of my pre-pregnancy weight, dehydration, inability to function etc) whilst pregnant with Little Man and it has had a massive impact on my entire family.

As such I am passionate about raising awareness of this condition and supporting women and their families who are going through the same thing. Like many women I had to fight for treatment and deal with a lot of ignorance regarding just what I was experiencing. I truly hope that one day (soon) this will change!

This is why I volunteer as much of my time as possible to help the charity Pregnancy Sickness Support. The charity is small but has so much to give and so it relies heavily on both volunteers and donations. And so I am proud to be part of this current fundraising campaign, doing something for 9 months to raise awareness and funds.

Why I chose crochet for my challenge

Due to other health issues I am unable to take on a physical challenge, so I decided to spend my 9 months crocheting. Although crochet is a hobby I enjoy anyway, I rarely sit down every single day to work on a project and so challenging myself to find at least 10 minutes every day to work on something means I shall hopefully have completed several items by the end of the 9 months. At the time of writing this I am in my second week (I started a bit early) and have almost completed a hat and bag.

I taught myself to crochet in 2006, the year before I met my husband, but it wasn't until my pregnancy in 2011 that I really got to grips with the mechanics of pattern design and a variety of stitches. In the early weeks of my pregnancy I couldn't do anything, but gradually I became able to drag myself downstairs and into the garden to sit for an hour or two and work on a blanket for my baby. At that point it was very much a distraction technique to try and ignore how sick I felt. Concentrating was difficult however and I didn't make much progress.

I received treatment that helped in the 5th month of my pregnancy and suddenly I was able to function pretty normally as long as I didn't overdo it. I sat and crocheted many items including 2 more blankets, several hats, and even a selection of crocheted crowns for my niece's "Princes and Princesses" birthday party. So crochet will always remind me of those "happier times" in my pregnancy and how important adequate treatment is.

How I aim to raise money for the charity

I have added my name to the fundraising team in case anyone wishes to sponsor me, however my main aim is to raise money from selling the items I make. Every single item completed during this challenge will be put up for auction on eBay in May 2014 to coincide with International Hyperemesis Gravidarum Awareness Day. 100% of the total price of each item sold will go direct to Pregnancy Sickness Support. I ran a handmade auction this year with items donated from other crafters and raised just over £300... I hope to at least match that next year with the items I make!

Follow my progress...

I shall be providing updates on here throughout the nine months, however there will be more regular updates being made on my own personal blog. I also have a Pinterest board dedicated to inspiration for this challenge, and am getting a lot of my patterns from Ravelry.



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“Mummy, please don’t sick the baby up.” by Susie



“Mummy, please don’t sick the baby up.”

As my little boy, James (who was three at the time) spoke those words he rubbed my back. Mummy was being sick again. It was a sight he was all too familiar with. His comment made me smile. Yes, smile. That might not sound very significant, but not very much made me smile when I was pregnant. It was a very low time in my life and a struggle to make it to the end of each day. It was heartbreaking not being able to care for my little boy properly. I couldn’t even care for myself. And then there was the guilt … I am his mummy, I should have been there for him.
But here I am three years later and he has a beautiful little sister, Charlotte. The bond between them melts my heart. I don't know how I would have got through two HG pregnancies without the amazing help and support I had from my husband, family and friends. I really wish I had known about Pregnancy Sickness Support when I was pregnant and this is why I want to highlight the fantastic work that the charity does so that other sufferers can get the treatment and support they need. 

So for nine months I will be doing what I can to increase awareness of HG and to publicise the charity by attending different groups and events each month armed with leaflets, banners, pens, balloons and a willingness to talk to anyone who will listen. I will end the nine months by holding a charity coffee afternoon to coincide with HG Awareness Day to raise funds for the charity.

Hopefully one day, through the work of PSS, we will find a cause and a cure for HG so that my daughter, and your daughters, granddaughters, wives, sisters and nieces do not have to go through the same ordeal. The work PSS does is funded entirely by donations. So please support our “Nine months of …” campaign. 



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Nine Months Of... 9k a week! by Helen


For the next nine months Anna and I will be completing 9k in weird and wonderful locations every week in aid of Pregnancy Sickness Support!  Our aim is not only to raise money for the incredible work the charity does in supporting women but also to increase awareness of Hyperemesis Gravidarum to encourage research into this horrific condition and find a cause and a cure in the hope that my daughter, future nieces and granddaughters won't have to suffer for their own babies.

We start our first 9k on 8th August 2013 - the official start date of the Nine Months Of… campaign!  You can sponsor us here if you would like to.  Go ahead… click here, or here, or here... go on, or I’ll set the baby on you…


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3 Peaks - 3 Trimesters by Emma

In May 2014 I will be taking part in a group challenge of completing the Yorkshire Three Peaks in order to raise funds and awareness of the Pregnancy Sickness Support charity. It is 25 grueling miles taking in Pen-Y-Ghent (2273 ft/ 694m), Ingleborough (2373 ft/ 723m) and Whernside (2414 ft/ 736m) in less than 12 hours.

There is one problem. I am extremely unfit. Therefore over the next nine months I will be training in order to actually get up the peaks!

So why I am putting myself through nine months of physical training and 12 hours of pain? The reason is because of two words – Hyperemesis Gravidarum. Those two little words that have changed me. Two words that took so much away from me but that has also given much in return.

For nine months I suffered from the debilitating condition called Hyperemesis Gravidarum whilst pregnant with my son. As dramatic as it sounds I truly believed I was going to die – and several days wished for nothing more. I was vomiting 40+ times a day and unable to look after myself. Each and every second of my pregnancy was pure hell. There was never any let up. Even when the medication eased the vomiting words still cannot describe the torture of suffering from relentless nausea 24 hours a day.


Nearly 15 months on and Hyperemesis Gravidarum still hasn’t left me. I no longer feel the physical symptoms but mentally I still suffer. In an instant I can be taken back to those darkest of days when all I could do was lay still and hope that time would go quickly. Those two words of Hyperemesis Gravidarum have been replaced by four words - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Over the next nine months I shall be updating my part of the blog with my trials and tribulations on getting fit in order to climb those peaks. The challenge, for me, will require determination, endurance and stamina – much like suffering nine months of Hyperemesis Gravidarum!


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