How To… track your ovulation…

…if you’re not good at maths.

I am really, really, really focusing on this “having a baby” thing. I am surprising even myself with how much I am throwing into it and how badly I want to be pregnant ASAP. I know it may take longer than a month, but I really want to give it my all.

So, naturally, however much sex we’re having, I still want to track my ovulation and make sure we have even more on those few days.

My problem? I am rubbish at maths, and monitoring, and I’m not the most regular girl anyway. So, here are some top tips to tracking ovulation if you haven’t the time, the inclination, the obedient ovaries or the brains to work it out mathematically.

Warning for frank discussion of the nasty bits.

1: Body temperature.

You will be a bit warmer on average when you are ovulating. Not a lot, and of course being warmer could mean many things, but this could be a good secondary sign to look out for.

2: Fluids.

Don’t be afraid to just check how your natural lubricant is behaving. Egg-white-looking (translucent, jelly, stretchy) and abundant fluid means your body is trying to be nice and hospitable to any sperm that may pay a visit.

3: Count down.

Have around two weeks passed since the start of your last period? Chances are you will ovulate some time in the third week.

4: Approximate.

Was your last period on the 18th? Count back six days. Then your last ovulation was around the 12th. You will likely be ovulating around the 12th (10th-14th) this month.

5: Horny?

Finding hubby absolutely irresistible? Your mind is off all work and difficult to focus? Picking up the romance books at the library? That’s your body telling you it wants a baby.

6: Tight tummy.

In preparation for the possible zygote, your body will plump up the cushions (womb walls), get some refreshments (womb lining) and make a little space (womb filling). If your abdomen feels tight and expanded under the belly button but you don’t really, really need to pee, then your womb is ripe and ready.

7: Toilet breaks.

OTOH, if you really, really need to pee a lot, all day, there might be some swelling that is pushing on your bladder. It could be the womb swelling up, even if you can’t directly feel it yet.

8: Ask a girl in the know.

Have a close friend or coworker who religiously tracks her cycle? Know you are more or less in sync with her? Then ask away, chances are you match up there too!

9: Sticks.

And if you really despair, get yourself a little box of ovulation sticks and call it a day. All this calendar watching isn’t for everyone. :p

And that is how I am keeping an eye out for ovulation. Hopefully it’s helpful to someone.

How did/do you track your cycle? Did I miss anything?

TTFN and Happy Hunting!

How To… prepare a “ladies’ kit”.

This post will discuss menstrual matters. Most men may not need to read this or feel comfortable reading it. However, if you are a woman, have daughters or just want to take care of someone who’s having a hard time this month, then the language will be kept polite and clear.

This is part VI of my ongoing “housekeeper’s kits” series. Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV and Part V at these links.

1: The bag.

You will be wanting something discreet, that can absorb odors (such as those from scented sanitary pads, creams or medication) and preferably that looks pretty. I chose a single compartment make-up bag for mine. It’s black, so any lotion or medicine spills won’t show and it absorbs and masks light smells quite well, though a lavender pouch is never superfluous.

2: The essentials.

Obviously, if this kit is a menstrual kit, you will need your basics. Also, if you’re making the kit for yourself, try and be sure to have your closer friends’ preferred basics as well, and some emergency items in case your usual items run out, break or just aren’t cutting it. I use a cup, but I still keep the following for emergencies.

-spare black underwear (because it always seems to be in the laundry when you need it most)

-pads

-tampons

-slips

-sanitary disposal bags

-cleaning equipment for reusable items

3: Extra hygiene.

Regardless of how much you want it to be, this time of the month can get messy. Other basics you could use are:

-a sponge for cleaning external porcelain stains

-well-sealed baby wipes that will treat you more delicately then the usuals

-flannels you can use with warm water for your hands

-some baby shampoo and peroxide in case of emergency stain treatment

4: The medicals.

And some of us need the odd medical treatment from time to time over that time of the month. If you do, keep the medicine in the bag, so you know where it is, and check the expiry date at the end of every month, as many of these medications expire before you’ve had a chance to use them all!

Some that everyone could do with:

-mild aspirin-free painkiller like paracetamol (aspirin is a blood-thinner and is found in ibuprofen, fyi)

-iron supplements

-st john’s wort (check for incompatibilities with underlying conditions or current medication first)

-anti-fungal gel

5: The comforts.

I don’t like treating a natural state of my body as an illness. But, on the other hand, if you can do little things to care for yourself the rest of the time, why not adapt to whatever state your body is in? Here are some things to make everything a little bit nicer, even if they aren’t 100% essential.

-rash creams to ease any stuffiness-based swelling

-a hot water bottle for aches or just because it’s nice

-a small toy to cuddle if you feel the urge

-a bag of your favourite sweets (keep outside of main bag, but nearby)