Find out? Or wait for a Surprise?

I don’t like surprises. I’m rubbish with them. There’s generally too much pressure and I don’t know how to react to them. My hen do was a classic example of this as my lovely bridesmaids put in a lot of effort to organise some really thoughtful surprises. I really appreciated their efforts, but honestly? I kind of wish they hadn’t. I felt excluded at times as there was so much whispering and giggling behind closed doors, and the rest of the time I felt under a lot of pressure, with all the comments of “I can’t wait to see how you react” & “I think you’re going to cry.” It sadly turned some lovely, fun, thoughtful things into a bit of a stressfest for me and I then felt I had disappointed them by not reacting the way they wanted.

I may have mentioned this once or twice before, but I’m a planner, and ok, I admit, a bit of a control freak. I like to know what I am doing and what is going on. That makes me happy. I can be a bit spontaneous at times and of course the odd  little surprise of something like hubby coming home from work a little early is lovely. But big surprises, surprises that aren’t really surprises because you know they are coming but you just don’t know what the surprise itself is? Nope, I don’t like them. Maybe the fact that I am impatient doesn’t help either – I literally hate the suspense!

This is one of the many many reasons why we won’t be waiting for a surprise to see whether we are having a girl or a boy for the next baby. I understand that for many people the surprise is incredible, and a wonderful moment, and I’m not saying they’re wrong and that everyone should find out, this is purely about my personal choice. Because I don’t like surprises at the best of times, waiting for a surprise at that point in time, when there is already so much else to worry about (is the baby ok, am I ok) just feels too much for me.

The other main reason though that we will be finding out at the 20 week scan, is that I don’t like calling the baby ‘it.’ I understand you can name your bump, and I also know that gender isn’t everything that defines a personality, but somehow, calling the baby “he” or “she” rather than “it” makes it more real for me. It makes the baby a person rather than a thing. You know how it is, we anthropomorphise everything – we give human traits to animals, appliances and inanimate objects. It’s what we do! (come on, tell me you’ve never described a washing machine or car as temperamental, or assigned them a gender?)  So it feels natural to me to refer to the baby, which is a human, as a human (he or she) rather than ‘it.’

He? She? It?

He? She? It?

Monkey was Monkey before he was born. We had loved his name since before we were pregnant but held back in case, as some people say, we saw the baby and the name just didn’t fit. So we weren’t shouting his name from the rooftops, but privately we referred to him by his name. And we loved it. He was a wriggle bum then and stubborn as he wouldn’t turn (we didn’t know at the time it was because he physically couldn’t turn)  and we liked giving him personality traits. You could obviously do that without knowing, but for us, we just loved knowing that ‘it’ was a ‘he.’

I know that they can’t always be 100% certain when determining gender via ultrasound, and I’ve read stories about people decorating rooms in pink with names stickered onto the wall, only for it to turn out not to be the little girl they were predicted. Having said that our ultrasound technician was pretty convinced that Monkey was a boy as he told us that Monkey had been playing with his bits for most of the scan, and that for him it was pretty conclusive!

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

We aren’t pink for girls, blue for boys people, so the baby’s room is probably going to be white and pastel colours, regardless of gender. We may go a little more girly if a girl is predicted but it would be pretty subtle. The baby will also probably wear Monkey’s old clothes, regardless of gender too, so it’s not so much the preparation side of things. Although I guess mentally preparing for a either will be good for me. I honestly don’t mind what we have, of course I like the idea of a girl so we have one of each, but honestly, girls scare me a bit when they get older, and boys are a bit more of a known quantity! So I will honestly be happy either way. It will be nice to prepare mentally for either though, as again, I don’t like surprises!

I just want to know. And, thanks to the wonders of modern technology, I can know. A lot earlier, when I am feeling calm. And honestly, it’s still a bit of a surprise no matter when you find out, isn’t it? This is obviously a massively personal issue and there are two set camps, those who choose to find out, and those who love the surprise. Neither is right or wrong, each to their own is what I say, but these are my reasons.

How about you? Do you like surprises?

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Mother's Always Right

I’ve been invited to meet Buddy Valastro!

If you are wondering “Who is Buddy Valastro?” He is an oh so cool New Jersey Baker who is the star of a very popular show, “Cake Boss” on TLC. He is famous for making some seriously incredible cakes. Cakes that are the size of cars. Cakes that are so intricate and detailed that they look like works of art. He is basically incredible, and very funny. He also has two other shows – “Next Great Baker” a competition show to find the next great baker,which is a lot of fun, and “Bakery Boss” which I have to admit I haven’t seen yet but looks to be a little like Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares…. but in Bakeries, which sounds like it would be very good fun!

And I have been invited to meet him! Moi? Little old me? I have blogged about his amazing Red Velvet Cake recipe before (which is incredible) and somehow, that blog post has led to an invite to a press event! Me and approx. 14 journalists are attending an exclusive cake decorating Masterclass in London. I can’t believe my luck! My initial response to the invite was a LOT of nervous giggling and it took me a few hours to get my head around it! Heck I’m not sure I do have my head around it! But I am definitely excited!!

My version of Buddy's Red Velvet Cake

My version of Buddy’s Red Velvet Cake

Hubby was very excited for me and is happy to look after Monkey while I trot off to London for the evening where I will be attending L’atelier des Chefs for said Masterclass and ‘chat’ with Buddy Valastro!  They are even going to pay for my train ticket to London! I’m dead excited (have I mentioned that?) but also really nervous! I love baking and I love his cakes, but he and his staff are INCREDIBLE and create some serious masterpieces. Have a look here for some of their recent cakes.

After a bit of trial and error I have managed to succeed in baking his Red Velvet Cake but this is a cake decorating masterclass, and, well, look at Monkey’s 1st Birthday Cake! Decorator Extraodinaire I most certainly am not! So the masterclass will be great and hopefully I will pick up some tips, but I also hope I don’t completely embarrass myself either!

Decorator Extraordinaire? Ummm .... No

Decorator Extraordinaire? Ummm …. No

Not to mention the fact that the other attendees are journalists, I am just a mummy blogger who likes baking, I have a feeling I will feel ever so slightly like a fish out of water! I will have to put a lot of effort into faking some confidence I think! I just can’t believe that I have been picked to attend a press event with a celebrity. Little old blogging me! Crazy, but awesome 🙂

I am hopefully going to get a chance to chat with Buddy (eek!) so I need to come up with some questions for him. Are any of you fans of Buddy or Cake Boss? Any burning questions you’d love to ask him? I can’t promise I’ll be able to get answers to any of them but I will give it a good try!

To see Buddy for yourself you catch him on TLC as follows

The current series of Bakery Boss is on every Friday at 9pm 

Cake Boss is on Fridays at 9pm from June

Next Great Baker is on Fridays at 9pm from September



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