This was a question that I’ve asked myself a lot over the last few months:
What do you wear to a Christening when you’re pregnant?!
It’s definitely not a unique position to be in at my age. Friends and family are having babies, those babies are getting christened, and other friends are pregnant at the same time. But with this being my first time being pregnant, and one of the first of my friendship group to be so too, it was a little bit tricky.
As I become more and more pregnant, I’m finding it more difficult to dress myself. I’m struggling to fit into my old clothes now – there are some oversized ones I can manage, but I’m mostly relegated to my maternity capsule wardrobe. And it’s a liiiiittle bit uninspiring. I knew this would be the case: I’ve never been one for a capsule wardrobe. Even though I like to get creative with what I wear, there isn’t a lot of creativity to be had when you have to stick to the same few shapes. For example, all my tops need to reach my hips rather than my waist to cover the belly band on my maternity jeans, and this is a silhouette I wasn’t used to wearing before.
Finding more formal wear while pregnant is hard, especially during the winter. Summer weddings and garden parties are perfect for big flowing maxi dresses, but winter means you need to wrap up and layer up more, and this doesn’t really lend itself to maternity wear where you’re already feeling like a watermelon! On top of that, you don’t want to buy something fancy that you can only wear on one occasion because it’s too big the next time another occasion rolls around.
So, all this is leading up to say that, fortunately, despite my worries, I came across a dress that worked perfectly for my friend’s little boy’s Christening a couple of weeks ago, and one which will not only last me through the Christmas season too, but into life in early motherhood. This is thanks to the soft jersey fabric that grows with you and the clever ruching and gathering across the bust – not to mention the secret breastfeeding snap hidden away inside it! The dress is designed to grow with your changing shape so it can be worn in early pregnancy or late, plus afterwards too. The jersey is super soft and is a gorgeous colour for the festive period too. I’m looking forward to wearing it for upcoming big Christmas meals – although I think my family might get sick of seeing the same outfit coming out time and time again, especially as I’m normally renowned for pulling out a new festive outfit every year!
We took these photos at an ancient Saxon church local to where I grew up – not the one where the christening took place, but nearby. St. Gregory’s Minster at Kirkdale was built around 1055 to 1060 on the site of an even earlier church. During the 15th century and 1800s, it underwent major modifications, but there are still evident remains of its history such as the 11th century sundial that sits above the door. The church is located in a peaceful wooded dell alongside Hodge Beck – there’s no longer any dwelling around the site, but it used to sit as the centre of a large parish.
My favourite part of the ancient history of this area dates back even further though – just a few steps away from the church sits the Kirkdale Cave. Discovered in 1821, it contained the fossilized bones of hippopotamus, elephant and cave hyenas – animals no longer found in the UK! In fact, it’s the furthest north that hippopotamus remains have ever been found. Legends say that the bones ended up here after the infamous Biblical flood, but further research shows that it’s more likely the hyenas dragged the animals in as food.
Anyway, there’s some fun facts about a bit of a hidden gem in North Yorkshire!