What to eat and drink, and how to make merry this season!
Being pregnant during the festive holidays can make you feel like you’re missing out on a lot of fun, especially when everyone around you seems to be overindulging on the food, wine and general merriment. Breathe! This is not the time to get resentful. There are plenty of fun things for you to do and have fun while at it. Keep this handy Christmas survival guide by your side, mamas-to-be!
Festive Food: What to eat and what to avoid
Whilst everyone will take a different approach to their body and pregnancy, there are some general guidelines that most mums-to-be like to follow to be on the safe side. Though Christmas is the season of indulgence, you need to be just a little bit cautious about the choices you make. We, at Sassy Mama, recommend avoiding anything with a high risk of carrying bacteria. This isn’t new advice and, throughout your pregnancy, you’ve probably been keeping away from uncooked seafood (oysters, smoked salmon or sushi), soft cheeses (brie, stilton and camembert) and some desserts (mousse, cheesecake and even meringues).
But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy plenty of other things on the festive menu. Load up on the turkey – it’s lean and high in protein, so it is the perfect meat to enjoy on the big day. Brussel sprouts may not be your favourite vegetable but they contain folate, protein and magnesium, so don’t be shy about going for seconds! The lure of Christmas snacking is inevitable, but try to limit the chocolates and sweets and reach for roasted nuts, dried fruit and healthy dips instead.
Seasonal Tipples: What to drink and what to avoid
One of the hardest parts of being pregnant during this season can be forgoing a glass of bubbly. There are some great non-alcoholic alternatives out there to ensure you can still raise a glass along with everyone else. The Bottle Shop in Sai Ying Pun and Wine Rack (with three stores across the city) stock a wide selection of alcohol-free wine, beer and Prosecco, such as this bottle of Le Petit Beret sparkling wine at just $112. Be sure to also stock up on a bottle of Seedlip, an alcohol-free spirit that offers a tasty alternative to a gin and tonic when celebrating with friends. Meanwhile many bars in Hong Kong now offer extensive and delicious mocktail and drink menus that ensure you don’t feel forgotten on a night out. The exotic Cleopatra Formosa at Vea, Designated Diver at Honi Honi Tiki Bar and the old reliable Naenae (have it warm in this weather) at BEDU get our vote.
Shopping when you’re pregnant can be a challenge. But winter is the best possible time to be at your most “blossoming” because of all the layering! You can cosy up in over-sized jumpers, waterfall cardigans and chunky coats. The other benefit of wearing over-sized winter pieces is that you can head back to your usual high-street faves and just choose a simple size up! When it comes to winter jumpers we love the cosy knits and simple styles available in H&M. It has a great selection of polo-necks, jumper dresses and chunky cardigans (reasonably priced from $179 and up). For something with a bit more sparkle, head to Zara for embellished knits and sequin jumpers. If you prefer to stick to form-fitting maternity wear, then Linea Negra Maternity is a popular stop for most new mums thanks to its thoughtful collection of over 30 brands at its centrally-located store.
If you want something a little more festive, try ASOS which has a great range of show-stopping options for all bump sizes (with the option of next day delivery for last-minute dressing dilemmas!). You can also find great options at Mayarya.
Your Gift Wishlist
Christmas is a time to dial up the pampering, so make sure your letter to Santa reflects that! Add your personal preferences to the list below and drop giant-sized hints to the dad-to-be, friends and family.
Candles: There is nothing that instantly soothes the soul as quickly as a scented candle. Naturally, you’d want one with no nasties in it, so opt for a soy or vegetable-wax based one, with a lead-free wick and preferably with lavender or citrus smells. Our top choices for style and scent are Diptyque, Candle Up and BeCandle.
Skincare: Neals Yard is a pioneer in natural and organic skincare. We can’t recommend its Mothers Massage Oil highly enough – one Sassy Mama used it nightly during her third trimester for the ultimate calming evening routine. Pair it with the Mothers Balm for a truly relaxing gift. Another Sassy Mama swears by The Body Shop Thai Makrut Lime Firming Oil that’s full of antioxidants, fatty acids and amino acids.
Read more: The Ultimate Guide To Fighting Stretch Marks
Lux Loungewear: The White Company is renowned worldwide for its high-quality home wear. In particular, the cashmere range is perfect for mums-to-be and for good reason, it’s super soft against itchy pregnant tummies and keeps you warm (whilst still looking stylish when relaxing at home). The White Company offers free international delivery on orders over $1,000. Already thinking of twinning with your baby? Look at the soft and breathable collection from Malabar Baby.
Perfect Pampering: For the ultimate in R&R, every mum-to-be would love to be packed off to a luxurious spa for a massage, facial, hair mask, pedicure and more. Most of the five-star hotels offer great prenatal pampering packages so take your pick and slip it on to the list.
Hair Care: Whilst some women benefit from those pregnancy hormones, you may need a helping hand with your tresses. If you would like to get a new look, why not put a good haircut and blowdry on your wishlist? Thankfully, Hong Kong has a plethora of fabulous hairdressers who will get you party-ready in no time.
Where To Shop
If you need to get your shopping done, then the last thing you need is to be traipsing around and getting crushed in the masses on the MTR. Instead, opt for the ease of shopping from the comfort of your home. Sassy Mama has done all the hard work for you with our carefully curated gift guides. Whether you’re looking for something stylish for a partner, cute for your firstborn, useful for the bump or heartfelt for your helper, we have the best suggestions for you.
If you want to step out, look for a one-stop shop. For luxury shopping, head to Harvey Nichols at Landmark or Lane Crawford at ifc mall. For something a little more unique and truly local, get your gifts from PMQ, a home for Hong Kong’s creative community. Shoes, jewellery, art and even specialist sake – you can find something for everyone here!