Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I established today that Hob Nobs are pretty good biscuits for dunking. I can carry out a 'hover' dunk for approximately 11seconds before it absorbs too much of the hot drink and annoyingly plops off into the deep below.

This got me thinking...A Biscuit Dunk-ability Test.

Jammie Dodgers - Rating 7/10. They're quite good. Thsi is due to the sandwich configuration is rigid. The jam/cream interface between provides a degree of flexibility and adhesion - preventing the 'soggified' or 'dunked' biscuit sections from disintegration.

Chocolate Hob Nobs - Rating 8/10. More dunk stable than the uncovered variety. The Hob Nob composite (with or without chocolate) is more stable than say a 'Nice' biscuit. The ingredients in the Nice type are fine and compared to the grain reinforced structure of the Hob Nob which are frail and can only be safely dunked by true experts or reckless dunkers.

Shortbread Finger - Rating 8/10. Highly compressed shortbread fingers are brilliant, but the better the quality of the shortbread, the less hardy they are with respect to tea exposure.

Sponge Finger - Rating 1/10. The increase in mass is way beyond its strength (once moistened). A dunking diasaster therefore is imminent and can not be prevented.

Wagon Wheels - Not Rated - I have a conspiracy theory about wagon wheels. We have been slowly conned. Over the years, the manufacturers have been steadily decreasing the size.

Custard creams - just albino bourbons...so Harry Hill once said.

Rich Tea - Rating 4/10. A very low dunk-ability factor. The possibility of breakoff is very high, resulting in the enivitable wet stain.

Ginger Nuts - Rating 9/10. Coffee is better than tea. Once the prescribed time has elapsed rigidity is maintained and the sucking can begin. The result is a strange tingling sensation on the tongue, livening up an average cup of coffee.

Kit-Kat - Rating 6/10. You CAN dunk a Kit Kat, but the problem lies with its construction of 4 or 2 fingers. This design is held together with a thick web of chocolate and not a biscuit or wafer lattice. This is suceptible to a variation in structural integrity across the whole jointline. If Kit Kats are divided into individual fingers they are then dunkable and withstand some serious dunkage without collapse.

Why don't packaged biscuits have a dunking factor clearly marked on the packaging to assist the novice dunker?

Having researched this further, I found that sugar is very soluble in hot water so as a rule, the higher the sugar content the less robust the super-structure of the confection. Exposure of a sugar rich biscuit to hot water causes the sugar to disolve out of the cured dough matrix and weakens the flour-based lattice. Result? - Severe biscuit collapse. Osmosis occurs, the biscuit taking on sugar until it matches the concentration of sugar in the tea. This causes a supersaturated condition, the boundaries between biscuit and tea become fuzzy - Heisenberg's uncertain-tea principle explains this nicely. Upon researching this subject further, I found this... http://www.teadunking.co.uk

What has this taught me? Only that I'm bored senseless and obviously I'm not alone!

Hormones and Arguments

Apparently...its not unusual for pregnant women to experience mood swings which can lead to arguments about the silliest of things. Apparently its to do with the hormones (men like to use this sentence a lot).

Progesterone and oestrogen, the female hormones which regulate the reproductive cycle, are thought to be partly responsible, but much of the moodiness is simply due to the fact that pregnancy is a time of tremendous change. We may be overjoyed at the thought of having a baby one day, then just as quickly begin wondering what it is we've gotten ourselves into!!

My advice for any Dads-to-be out there is to just be patient. How about try talking about the issue when she's not irritated? Make a deal together. She gets irritated and acts stupid, he goes for a walk. Later, you'll both just laugh about it.

I think the key words we have to use are, UNDERSTANDING and PATIENCE....a woman's mind is a very sensitive and emotional one and when compromised by pregnancy hormones, it can be a very dangerous one!


  • Don't use the 'Oh, its your hormones' line during an argument. Its like lighting a firework
  • Don't use the 'You're right...you're always right' line during an argument. Its like lighting 2 fireworks
  • Don't pat her on her head and smile sweetly. Its like lighting 2 fireworks and the firework factory
  • Don't say 'I know how you feel', because you don't...however, you could really try putting yourself in OUR shoes...check out The Empathy Belly
  • Think you can win an argument...no matter how right you think you are
There are forums on the Internet available to men who need some support when dealing with 'er indoors', but they are hard to find. For those men out there who need some well needed guidance or like-minded conversation...try this link.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

38 Weeks

  • Walked into the end of a kitchen cupboard (not on purpose!) and thought that would kick-start contractions. Got a funny mark on my bellybutton now.
  • I weigh 2 stone more than I usually do
  • Ricki Lake is SO boring and her voice goes straight through me
  • We're having a downstairs toilet being installed/built... in the last stages of being completed. Got the thumbs up from Building Regs for it today too – hooray!
  • I’ve got an ‘orrible cold and cough…just what you need at a time like this. Makes you feel ten times worse.
  • Learnt today that no matter what I’m feeling like, the baby is happy as Larry and has no snotty nose or annoying cough
  • Learnt today that the average weight gain for someone who is up the duff is 2stone…Phew! (wish I’d not had that Double-Decker for breakfast now)
  • Everyday, there are at least 4 daytime programmes dedicated to providing DNA tests. That’s about 4 people for every show. 16 x DNA test results a day. That’s 5824 x DNA test results a year (exc. Xmas). That’s a whole of people not using contraception. I blame the parents myself. Do you think I have too much time on my hands or something??
  • Sally Jesse Raphael looks like Sue Pollard…for those of you who remember her! (Hi-de-Hi Campers!)
  • Had a few ‘pains’ in the middle of the night which are just the first stages of labour and give me an indication that my cervix if getting ready to eject…nice.
  • Osteopath tomorrow…can’t wait! He’s a magic man with magic hands

Tuesday, October 16, 2007



Monday, October 8, 2007

SPD and ME

I'm quite lucky.

My SPD symptoms started late in my pregnancy. Some women suffer with this very early on. One of my friends suffered with this earlier this year and I had no idea how much pain she must have been in. I felt awful for not fully understanding the condition and how it must have affected her and her husband.

As I knew my friend had experienced SPD, I called her for advice straight away.

She was fantastic. A real rock. Without her, I would have been at a loss as to know what to do.

In the first instance, my friend advised me to ask my GP to refer to me to an Osteopath who specialises in SPD. I did this and I am still waiting for the referral! Instead, Jerry found an Osteopath local to us who we could see privately. We have to pay for the sessions, but it's well worth it.

The Osteopath was confident he could aliviate the pain and discomfort and specialised in pregnant women and babies.

So far, I have had 2 sessions and can feel the difference already.

Unfortunately (or fortuately!), I was signed off work as I have to drive for my job and with SPD, the recommendation is total rest. My GP signed me off for two weeks, but I continue to work from home on my laptop.

The other invaluable advice my friend gave me was very similar to the recommendations in my previous post (SPD - the groin pain)...wear a pelvic support vest (more comfortable than a pelvic suuport belt)...borrow some crutches so if you have to move, your weight is more on the crutches than on your pelvis...take homeopathic remedies when labour starts to help with the SPD pain.

I have had stop going to my Yoga for Pregnant Women as I am unable to open my legs without experiencing pain and driving or getting in and out of the car just makes the symptoms worse the next day.