Zika Virus – basic need to know facts

Zika virus threat is real and has been declared a “global public health emergency” by the World Health Organization. Four cases have been confirmed in the UK but the virus doesn`t naturally occur in our country.

The Zika virus is spread primarily to people through the bite of an Aedes species mosquito which luckily is not found in the UK. The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, conjunctivitis (red eyes), muscle pain and headache and the incubation period is likely to be from a few days to a week. It has been confirmed that there is also a sexual transmission of the virus so safe sex is advised for people who have traveled to areas where there is an active Zika transmission.

The illness is usually mild and does not require hospitalisation as the symptoms usualy last for several days to a week. For now there is no vaccine to prevent or medicine to treat Zika virus (the treatment consists of plenty of rest, drinking fluids to prevent dehidration, paracetamol).

The real Zika virus danger is for the pregnant women since it has been officially announced that there is now enough evidence to conclude that Zika virus infection during pregnancy is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects and has been linked to problems in infants, including eye defects, hearing loss, and impaired growth.

It is highly recommended especially for pregnant women to avoid traveling to any area where the Zika virus is spreading. By April the known areas with wide spreads are: The Caribbean, Central America, The Pacific Islands, South America, Mexico.

If you are in an area with a risk of virus infection you can protect yourself by preventing mosquito bites (wear long sleeved-shirts and long pants, stay in places with air conditioning and door/window screens, use insect repellents, stay away from mosquito breeding sites, like containers with standing water). Safe sex is also advised in order to avoid getting Zika through sex. Also if you traveled to an area with a risk of virus infection it is highly recommended to talk to a healthcare provider even if you don`t feel sick.

How to choose a baby name

Most new parents expect to have the ultimate inspiration when seeing for the first time the sparkling eyes of their baby. “Thou shalt be named: [big pause]”, but it is not that easy.

Scroll down this article and you will find the five best sources to inspire a baby name.

  1. “What say you?”

Lord of the Rings – You like the trilogy or not, Tolkien’s books offer great inspiration for baby names. He created an entire world so you can choose between an elf, a dwarf or a human. Do not forget the hobbits. There are many name generators created by fans of Tolkien that can help you with the meaning.

You can have lots of fun with those tools, but for the sake of your baby do not choose a name that is easy to mock.

  1. “The force is strong in you”

Star Wars – Another epic realm that can inspire you to come up with a cool baby name is the Jedi world. Your child, especially if it is a boy will be proud to bear the name of a Jedi master or a Sith lord. Just make sure he watches the films at one point in his life. You can find plenty of name generators on the Internet that are based on the Jedi culture.

  1. “The one who must not be named”

Harry Potter & co. – We are all Harry Potter fans, in secret. This piece of art has numerous names that can inspire a girl or a boy name. Some examples are Bartemius or Alecto, or even Fleur. Your baby will be proud to have the name of a strong wizard.

  1. “We call that one muad’dib”

Dune – Frank Herbert is another creator of worlds. Though the movie made after his book is not that recent, checking the name of the characters is a delightful experience. Your baby will have an exotic name with a philosophical touch.

  1. “Once upon a…”

Fairy tales in general are a rich source of names. From Disney’s Elsa to Grimm’s Gretel, these names have a magical ring. Your child will probably expect a fairy to be his best friend, but at least you will have a sociable offspring.

Many celebrities have used this type of sources to name their children such as Nicholas Cage and Steven Spielberg.

Celebrity Baby Names – Top Picks for Inspiration

Celebrities choose the coolest and weirdest names for their babies. Some with complex and sought-out meanings behind them, others chosen just because of the cool sound, here are some of the most inspiring baby names of celebrities.

Baby boy names

George Alexander Louis

Parents: Kate Middleton and Prince William

Prince George was named after the Queen’s father – King George VI. The name ‘Louis’ is rumoured to be after Lord Louis Mountbatten. When Prince George will come to rule the country, he will be King George VII.


Romeo James

Parents: Victoria Beckham and David Beckham

Apparently ‘Romeo’ is just a name that Victoria and David liked very much.


Angelo James

Parents: Adele and Simon Konecki

Adele and Simon kept their baby boy’s name a secret for almost 4 months after his birth. The singer first revealed the name by wearing a gold necklace with the name Angelo.


Rex Rayne Wood

Parents: Fearne Cotton and Jesse Wood

The parents did not reveal their inspiration for their baby boy’s name, but it is certainly unique and it has a cool sound.



Parents: Shakira and Gerard Piqué

Shakira revealed the origin of her baby boy’s name on her website: “The name Milan (pronounced MEE-lahn), means dear, loving and gracious in Slavic; in Ancient Roman, eager and laborious; and in Sanskrit, unification.”


Astala Dylan Willow and Phaedra Bloom Forever

Parents: Peaches Geldof and Thomas Cohen (S.C.U.M.)

Geldof chose a Jewish name for her first-born, picked up from a baby name book. ‘Astala’ is supposed to be the male version of the Jewish girl name Esther. As for Phaedra, born one year later, Geldof declared in an interview that she had chosen the name from the song ‘Some Velvet Morning’, by Lee Hazlewood. The boy was also named ‘Bloom’, after Peaches’ middle name Honeyblossom and after Nirvana album ‘In Bloom’.


Baby girl names

Theodora Rose

Parents: Robbie Williams and Ayda Field

Robbie declared he wanted an old-school name for her daughter, and had several such names already planned before Theodora’s birth.


Isabelle Catherine

Parents: Emma Willis and Matt Willis

‘Isabelle Catherine’ is a beautiful and well-chosen baby name, much more conventional than her brother’s name: Ace Billy.


Marnie Rose

Parents: Lily Allen and Sam Cooper

The name ‘Rose’ was chosen after her mother’s middle name.


Fox India

Parents: Emma Ferguson and Mark Owen

The parents have not declared their inspiration for the highly criticized name ‘Fox India’.


Marlowe Ottoline Layng

Parents: Sienna Miller and Tom Sturridge

The name ‘Marlowe’ has been reportedly chosen after Christopher Marlowe, a great Elizabethan dramatist who influenced Shakespeare.


Tabitha (Xiao Xi)

Parents: Hugh Grant and Tinglan Hong

Hugh Grant’s daughter also carries a Chinese name – Xiao Xi – which means ‘happy surprise’.


A Yoga Teachers Birth Story; Sonia shares her Journey into Motherhood!

My Daughter, Mika Angelina was born on 30/12/12 at 1.28pm within 34 minutes of me arriving where I was to give birth. One day before her due date, she certainly does not get that punctuality from me!


My Birth Experience was surreal and to date, the most magical experience of my life. I hope this sharing serves to inspire you to step into your “Goddess Feminine” energy and embrace your Pregnancy to Birth Journey.


I had no idea I was actually in the final stage of labor when I walked into the foetal assessment unit at hospital.


My waters had broken earlier that Sunday morning and I had experienced some very mild period-like cramps. They were not strong enough for me to even look for paracetamol, let alone take any. We called our Doula, , and she arrived to find two very happy and excited parents-to-be.


“You’re both smiling so much” She laughed, “its amazing” We were, I was, and deliberately too, because I knew that the more I smiled the more natural endorphins I would release.


I forced myself to keep smiling the whole way through and it worked. The endorphins flowed so well, I did not know I was in labour, the strongest pain killer there is, made by our own bodies.


The doula suggested I sit in an easy Yogi cross-legged pose, and try sleep. She propped some pillows under my arms and I was very comfy.

I slept sitting in a lotus position on my sofa, half asleep & half lost in the visualizations I had practiced in Hypno-Birthing.



At 12pm, with my first big-ish contraction, we decided to head across the park to the hospital. Very aware that as a first baby, there was a risk of being sent home if we were not 4cm dilated. As you know, 10 cm means “Baby is Coming”. From 4cm to 10cm is the period known as “The Up Stage” of labor. This is when most people ask for pain killers, epidurals etc.



Within minutes of arriving at the hospital, they assessed the baby was actually crowning (which means I could have had her in the car) and I was already 10cm dilated and “Baby was Coming”. I had gone through the entire “Up Stage” of labor without feeling anything worthy of a paracetamol.


The race was on to rush me up to labour ward. I recall my husband, asking them to hurry up and fill the pool (I had wished for a water birth).


I heard the nurses telling him that it would take 15minutes to run the pool and we did not have 15 minutes. Still, he insisted. So, I had the comforting sound of water as the backdrop to my Mika’s birth.


When we arrived in the Labor Room, the active birth unit, I headed straight for a large bean bag over in the right corner and very organically moved myself into a sort of Yoga Cat position, laying over the it.

We had no time to get to get my hospital bag, which would have made even Mary Poppins proud.


I had everything in it, lotions, potions, music etc none of which made the party!


The midwife assigned to us introduced herself from behind me, “I haven’t seen your face yet” she said, “I’m Lucy”


This introduction was then followed by 4 big contractions and with each one, I tried to deeply relax and let nature take over. I breathed, I did not push. If I could explain what I did in a word, it would be “Allowed”. I just allowed it to unfold, no thinking, no controlling, simply being part of this great mystery of feminine being.


My Doula, thankfully, was by my side. Reminding me softly, that my body and baby knew exactly how to birth beautifully.


Mika greeted the world head first, with face still clothed in amniotic membrane. Known as “Born with a Caul”. As the rest of her little body was about to birth, the midwife told me to reach around and catch her, I did.


There are simply no words to describe this moment, this little life sitting in my arms. Ecstatic Loving Energy filled the room, surrounding us all in the miracle of life.

The midwife put Mika on my belly and straight away she crawled up and latched on. It felt like a wild life programme that I was both witness too, and part of.

It was a birth from heaven. Totally drug-free, not even a paracetamol and thankfully no tears.


I wholeheartedly attribute my birth experience to my Yoga Practice and Hypno-Birthing. I practised yoga everyday until the day she was born, I taught until I was 37weeks. I was on my mat the next day and that is no exaggeration.


I did not adjust my practice according to the pre-natal recommendations with regards to increased Elastin. Though, of course, I adjusted my practice to accommodate my belly!


This whole journey has made me more grateful for my yoga practice. I now teach Pre&Post-Natal Yoga in London and Hope to Inspire more woman to embrace their beautiful journey with curiosity, courage and excitement.


Mika is 21 weeks old and we are well into the new chapter of this book, and loving it.


If you would like to find out more about Pre/Post Natal Yoga Classes in London, you can contact me via the Baby Scan Clinic.




Fun ways to announce your pregnancy

Whether you just found out you’re pregnant or you’ve known for a few months, announcing your pregnancy to family and friends can be a lot of fun. Some may want to wait until a certain time during their pregnancy, while others want to call everyone immediately after finding out themselves.

Telling The Father – 

Have a romantic dinner for two with candle lights, it may be your last time for a while, between morning sickness and raising your little one. Serve up baby carrots, baby back ribs and anything else you can think as baby. At the end, pour apple juice instead of wine and hand him a present. Inside you can have a tiny baby bib that says, “I heart My Daddy” or a pair of baby booties.

If you can’t tell the father right away because he’s away on business, or deployed try sending him a care package. Inside the box place a few baby items, everything in blue and pink and a baby naming book in the center. Place a note on top of the book with, “I need a name soon, I’ll be here by June.” Or whenever the baby is due.

You can also see how long it takes him to figure it out. Go to the pound store and pick up a bunch of small baby items, a bib, rattle, bottle, booties, etc. For a week, leave an item laying around the house where he is bound to find them. At the end of the week if he hasn’t figured it out yet, prepare the big gift. Have a large teddy bear sitting at the dinner table in the seat beside him, make sure there is a bib wrapped around him and maybe a sign that says Hi Daddy.

Telling Family and Friends – 

Show up to a family gathering wearing a shirt that announces your state. These days there are a ton of shirts out there with clever sayings, “Baby on Board,” “A Bun in the Oven,” or something related to the pregnancy. The moment you walk in or take off your jacket everyone will figure it out without you ever having to say a word. Now, get ready for the tears and excitement. You’ll be answering a ton of questions.

If you already have children you may want to call the grandparents up and tell them that the next Christmas they may want to add one more to the list.

If this is the first grandchild, you may want to get a bracelet link for your mum that reads, “#1 Grandma” or grandparent t-shirts. This will not only be a great present for them but something they will cherish and love forever.

No matter when you spread the news it can be a lot of fun, just think creative and let the pieces fall. You may even want to try catching all of it on video, so think ahead and prepare for the BIG moment, and I’m not meaning the birth.