Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Dear Santa...

A photo shoot- what a great gift for the pregnant lady! (Not)

When you get pregnant there are lots of things that happen to you that never even occurred to you. There’s the swelling of body parts other than your belly (fingers and toes, anyone?), the fact you can’t go a hour without eating a substantial meal, and the dreadful digestive problems you previously thought only elderly dogs suffered from.

However there’s something a lot of first time mums are  going to find out about being pregnant (or indeed nursing) at Christmas time and that’s this: you will get crap Christmas presents this year.

Nobody knows what to buy a pregnant lady. You can’t buy them clothes because they are monster sized, sorry- what I mean is they are blooming and burgeoning and nothing will fit them-yes sometimes even shoes. You can’t even buy them maternity clothes as they will hurl them back at you with some added abuse. Booze is out for obvious reasons and anything fragranced is bound to make the super sensitive mum-to-be puke as soon as they catch a  whiff of whatever soapy, moisturisey type cosmetic you’ve bought them.

So what’s left? Items for baby? Absolutely not. A great deal of parents are very superstitious about having baby items in their home until baby himself is actually here in the flesh. Furthermore, isn’t the gift supposed to be for the lady in question, not the unborn progeny inside her? His or her time will come...oh yes it will.

Now, obviously this is a slightly churlish post to come from two writers who have written a book that is possibly the BEST EVER Christmas gift you could  give a new mum or a pregnant lady (Click here to make sure Santa Claus gets his order in good time), but all the same the question has to be asked. What the blazes do you buy a woman who can’t do any of the following things this Christmas:

  • Move
  • Drink alcohol
  • Eat cheese/shellfish/raw eggs/pate
  • Wear nice clothes
  • Smell anything more pungent than fabric softener
  • Stay awake for longer than a couple of hours at a time

Six years ago my sister and I were pregnant at the same time. She was three months ahead of me in gestation.  We knew we would be a problem to buy for so we armed ourselves with a list of suggestions for those who were struggling. Some ignored the list. Yes, you know who you are. Some decided a good idea would be to buy us both a bottle of red wine. Presumably cos it’s healthy, init?  What would have been less appropriate, I ask you? A soft cheeseboard? A voucher for a bungee jump? A boob tube? Roller skates? A unicycle?
I expect a full list of other terrible pregnant lady Christmas gifts to appear shortly in the comments box. C'mon ladies- name and shame! Who bought you Lionel Shriver's "We Need to Talk About Kevin" or a DVD of Roman Polanski's "Rosemary's Baby"?

Let’s do the relatives and friends of those pregnant or nursing ladies a favour and make a special Christmas list. Then we can send it on to those that we may think could go down the bottle of red wine route...or worse the cosy bedjacket/wooly socks route. What’s the ideal present for those with one in the oven?

Other than a copy of Cocktails at Naptime, that is. *Cough*



  1. As a nursing mum, it was only the large glasses of red wine that got me through last Christmas - if you're going to be stuck nursing a baby for an hour at bedtime whilst everyone else parties then you need something (and alcohol is ok whilst nursing

  2. I got lots of those nursing shirts that have slits for your Bristols to hang out to feed. Why oh why are they always made from either easy wash polyester or Hawaiian prints? Pass the sick bucket

  3. I have said this before somewhere else, but cut me some slack - it's been a long day.

    Worst ever was Xmas present when pregnant with Mr Man, from OH no less.
    It was a scuba watch.
    I smiled sweetly and thanked him, and at a later moment asked him "Why?" (I may not have been quite so polite).
    "So you can go swimming with the baby," he replied.
    "What? And dive to 30m?"

    It was changed for something more suitable shortly after.

    LCM x

  4. I soo want to get my best friend your book. But honestly, the pregnancy turned her brains to mush, and there is no way she'll be able to read an English book. How are we doing on a German translation???

    Hugs from Hamburg,

  5. My first pregnancy husband gave me maternity skirt, a short, short maternity skirt :: bad ::

    and a Guns N Roses T-shirt in his size.

    The second pregnancy he gave me Rose Water spray which was delightfully cooling on hot summers days and not to overwhelming stinky.

  6. Hahah I hear the 'can't move' thing. I can't even move now!

  7. Chocolate, just buy them chocolate. Or maybe that's just me...and I don't have to be pregnant to appreciate it...

    I managed to avoid the shit presents by not telling everyone until Christmas day that i was pregnant, much easier.

    And what on earth is going on with that dudes hair in the picture? Apologies if you know if him or are unfortunate enough to be married to someone that thinks Emenim (or however you spell it) is a good look to model yourself on.

  8. Heather - the photo is from the great Awkward family Photos site- you must go and look through- you'll pee yourself.

  9. I would say shopping centre vouchers so Mum can spoil herself once baby is here. But if you were me, you would just spend it on nappies or breast pumps or something instead.
    I don't know, maybe a voucher for a decent hair cut since you probably won't be able to wash it for at least 6 months ...
    jewellery is also out because if you're like me, your fingers turn into sausages.
    Merry Fucking Christmas. (Or not fucking. It's rather uncomfortable when you're about to pass a human being out of your nether regions).

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  11. My mother in law had the right idea and towards the end of my pregnancy with my Little Man she bought me a box filled with speciality 'mum to be' toiletries and cosmetics, all softly scented so not to over power you with sickly smells and all gentle enough for even the most sensitive of skins. There were foot creams, body lotions, bubble baths, hand and nail creams, face masks the and more and I can honestly say it went down a treat. It was so nice to pamper myself a little and make the most of it while I still had time to do it before having a new baby taking up all my time.

    I have used her idea and done the same for a few of my preggy friends and family too and they always greatly appreciate it too.

  12. @Posh Totty ....come to think of it my In-Laws were stars at the first birth. They arrived from Ireland laden down with a suitcase full of all varieties of Cadbury's Chocolate Bars which I devoured very gratefully to the point where I think my daughter was probably quaffing chocolate flavoured milk via breast!

  13. I hear you and have to agree..25 years ago I got some lovely Christmas gifts for our baby...thanks a bloody lot to all my family and friends but the worst thing was they also bought me baby gifts for my 21st birthday 3 months before Christmas :( where their logic was I have no idea but it did 1 good thing I refused to give my youngest daughter baby things for her birthday or Christmas and I refuse to give them again to my eldest daughter this year as she will be around 26 weeks then. But oh goodness I wish she would tell me what she would like besides a comfortable nights sleep right now LOL.
    Thanks for sharing and I found you via the FlogYo Blog Friday post :)

  14. Movie vouchers, book vouchers, chocolates, pedicures, manicures, facials, head massages. They were the sort of presents I would have liked. Instead I got a lot of soap. x

  15. I am positive my mum is going to get me breastfeeding tops this Christmas which is great except she never looks at the size, just grabs a nice looking one. Last year when I was preggers she got me a pair of shoes... in her size. Hrmmmmmm.

  16. I could've used a personal catheter while I was pregnant. That woulda made a pretty brilliant gift if you asked me. Oh and the world's largest bra. One that I can now fit my entire body into. That would've been helpful. Or I might have strangled you with it. Hard to say. I was hormonal. And pregnant.

  17. Oh, I love this!! It's hilarious and so true! Fortunately, I wasn't pregnant during Christmas with either of my pregnancies, but I did deliver both in the middle of August in Southern CA. Not good weather for being 9 months pregnant I tell you!

    I'm a first time reader, but I'll definitely be back!

  18. One of my babies was due on 28 December, but being him, he didn't bother to put in an appearance until 8 January. I have no idea at all what Christmas presents I got that year, because my mind was on other things.

    My second baby arrived on 4 December, and we went to France on holiday on the 19th, so avoided any family Christmas presents (we're not big on them in our house).

    So now the routine is 4 Dec birthday, Christmas, 8 Jan birthday. Excellently expensive time of year. But I'm glad no-one has ever suggested combining Christmas and birthday presents for the boys.