Sunday, 24 November 2013

Fear is a liar

Fear is a sneaky beast which likes to visit me in between my day to day thoughts, when I don't even expect it.

I'm going along fine, thinking about normal things, then BAM *what if I lose my baby? I couldn't bear it- what if, what if, what if.*

I struggled with heavy fear early on in this pregnancy, and to be fair to myself, it wasn't without reason. I thought once I got to 12 weeks I'd be ok, then it was once I felt the kicks, now it's once I get to 24 weeks (viability- tomorrow!), but actually I don't think this fear will go away till baby is born, and probably not even after that.

I'm starting to realise that fear isn't necessarily logic based (as it seemed to be early in this pregnancy). Fear plays on possible but unlikely worst-case scenarios. The thing is I know there is no point wasting my time on fear. And I have some good strategies for recognising and shutting it down when it creeps up. The sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach is not something I need to be living with.

What is the point of me sharing this? I don't know. I don't have any amazing cures for fear, except for praying it away and ignoring it's pull into darker thoughts. I have a feeling this will be something that visits me for many years to come, and maybe it visits you too- perhaps it's just part of the human condition.

But what I, you, we, must remember is that anxiety and fear are just lies, with enough small threads of truth to make them seem real. They aren't true, they aren't our reality- fear is a liar.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Marble Cake: Strawberry, Vanilla and Mint

Last week I made a cake for a friends birthday. I wanted some colour but I couldn't be bothered doing a layer cake (too much time!). So instead I decided to do a marble cake, because you can have all the colours and flavours and you just put the mixture in one pan- easy!

I took a basic vanilla cake recipe and made a big batch of that. Then I split it into 3 bowls. To the first bowl I added some more vanilla. To the next I added a little spearmint flavouring and green food colouring. To the third I added some strawberry puree (about 10 strawberries pureed) and a little pink food colouring. You could just use strawberry flavouring, but why not use the real stuff if you have it?

Then I added 'splotches' of each flavour to the pan. Once all the mixture was added in I swirled it with a toothpick.

Bake as usual, then let it cool. Decorate as you wish- there are so many ways! I decided to do rosettes in the three colours, but you could just do plain rosettes or frosting and let the inside be a pleasant surprise!

I found that the flavours went together well. But there are so many other options depending on what you have in your cupboard- chocolate, orange and vanilla? chocolate, lemon and strawberry? Chocolate, mint and orange? So many options, my mouth is watering already.....

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Our gender reveal party

Last Saturday we had our baby gender reveal afternoon tea. I had fun preparing the food- lots of little treats, and my sister in law got the sacred envelope with the gender tucked inside, and she baked the reveal cake.

Around 30 of our friends and family came over, and it would have been a lovely afternoon tea even without the cake! Cutting the cake was so exciting though....

It's a girl!!!! Yay!

We're of the philosophy that we want to enjoy every part of this pregnancy, so having the gender reveal afternoon tea was part of that. It was so much fun, and I reckon this will happen again if we have future children. Oh and if anyone wants me to bake their gender reveal cake, I'm keen!
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