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Showing posts from March, 2011

A little perspective

Thanks for all the comments, virtual hugs, fb messages and sms’es to help me keep my chin up during this tough phase. It really helps so much to get me through such moments.Apart from encouraging words, I also sought out some of that much needed perspective. Now that I am a mother, reading about articles like this one on orphans makes me more emotional over sad stories and news about children, compared to the time before we had our plus one.So after tearing a little over that story, I‘ve reminded myself that: despite having to deal with back arching stunts, nap-time resistance, 45 minute intruders, graveyard hour nursing shifts and not so wonderful wonder weeks… I’m so glad that Nathan can grow up knowing someone will always be there to answer him whenever he cries and to pick him whenever he reaches up with his little arms.Aaaand… there’s nothing like a little walk and some fresh air to calm everyone’s nerves down.

A caveat

After hearing some MAJOR concerns that my previous post will scare off loving friends/relatives/fans away from Nathan, I decided to write a caveat to clarify the situation.First and foremost, Nathan has NOT morphed into a grumpy, unlovable creature. He is still his happy self and in fact growing happier each day. His laughs and smiles keep getting more and more gorgeous at each passing day. I mean, look at this!People are still constantly smitten by his looks. He is still his irresistibly adorable little self. The only person who is the real crank is me. I guess that’s what sleep deprivation can do to a person… not that it should be an excuse, I just need to cultivate better grace to handle these moments. This is just an honest diary of an imperfect mum who aspires to grow in grace as her son grows in size and stature.So don’t let the cranky mother scare you off. Nathan is still always ready to play and socialise... here he is happily being carried by his gong gong: This mother just n…

Not so wonderful wonder week

Sorry for the lack of updates Nathan-wise. It has been a very trying Week 12. Visitors in town (father-in-law and other guests) and apparently Nathan is going through a growth spurt or wonder week where he is undergoing a major developmental leap and as a result is more fussy and crankier than usual. Coupled with guests in the house, his routine has gone haywire and has been waking up and nursing at random times throughout the day. He has been stickier to me as well and seems to need extra cuddle time, sometimes refusing to sleep anywhere else except in my arms.


I feel for the kid, I really do. It must be hard to nap with all the strange new voices and noises in the house. Also during waketimes, he is sometimes required to entertain the guests. Here's a thought: why do adults like to talk to a baby all at the same time? The poor kid is trying to take it all in and on top of that needs to dart his eyes here and there to layan each adult calling his name. Nathan is actually quite sp…

How I use traditional muslin cloths as nappies

This post is for the benefit of my friend Stephanie who has recently made the decision to take the plunge into cloth diapering. She bought a few pieces of MCNs and is expecting a package of two dozen muslin flats. Although I've collected a good stash of modern cloth diapers, muslin flats still form a key part of my cloth diapering system. When I first started using this, I was a little dubious about the absorption power of this seemingly flimsy material. But it’s quite surprising how well it performs… and for such a small cost (sometimes free as these are commonly received as a gift from loving friends/relatives) it’s by far the most economical way to diaper a baby. The first fold I used was the traditional Chinese or Origami fold:

Unfortunately for me, I found that it didn’t hold up very well as my son is a rather heavy wetter and I had yet to discover the use of nappy covers. My other complaint about this fold is that the fold is not really concentrated around the main wetting area.…

I made my own kaya!

This blog has turned into a total mummy blog! I think the only people who are taking an interest are other mummies. So this next post is for a wider audience in mind. I haven’t blogged about anything cooking related lately, so thought I’d mix things up a bit with a post on making my very own homemade kaya!I found the recipe here and saw how easy it was. This recipe could go into the 4 Ingredient category… and it only takes about half an hour to make – not kidding! After you read about this, I can bet you’ll be heading into the kitchen to try this one out yourself.Tools required
Mixing bowl
Whisk
Microwave Ingredients
Eggs
Coconut milk
Sugar
Pandan leaves/flavouringThe recipe indicated quantity of the ingredients in terms of ratios of 1:1:1 for the eggs, coconut milk and sugar. For the flavouring, you only need 1-2 leaves or a few drops of essence.To give you a clearer idea of how much coconut milk, sugar and eggs to prepare, here’s how much I used to produce about 350g of kaya:4 eg…

The amazing back arching stunt

Nathan is pretty much an angelic baby most of the time. So far I’ve not had to post a single grumpy photo of him. But Nathan is a normal human baby, so there will be moments like this…What was he so upset about? Well apparently it was very upsetting to him that his dear mummy tried to offer him a second breast after he pulled off the first one. It seems I must be a terrible mother for daring to do so.Lately he only nurses on one side for about 10-15 minutes and then pulls off. I always try to offer him the second side because I’m always dubious as to whether he really is full… after all it’s only been 10 minutes. Sometimes he will take the second side… the other times he will just go '”enough is enough!” and pull one of these…I think all mothers will be familiar with this back arching stunt. I really am a terrible mother for laughing and snapping photos while her dear son is pulling this stunt in evident frustration.Jokes aside, the 10-minute speed nursing is a bit of a puzzle for…

Evolving routine

This post is mainly for the benefit of my parents. We try to skype about once a week during the weekend so they can have a glimpse of their beautiful grandson.Unfortunately this weekend’s session was shot due to a poor internet connection and awkward timing. They called around 4.30pm which previously was when he would be awake for his late afternoon feed and wake time. However as his routine has been evolving, he was asleep at that time and would only be waking up in a hour’s time. At around 6.00pm we tried skyping again but ran into the connection issues instead.So I thought to give them (and anyone else interested) a view into what his current routine is like. I guess this could also be sort of a between week 11 and 12 update.We previously followed a 3-hour routine, but I’ve started to stretch it to 3.5 hours as I notice that I’ve had to wake him up for his feeds most of the time lately… here’s what we are currently roughly working around:7.00am: first wake up time of the day, feed,…

Mummy the kangaroo

I think every mummy has a secret weapon in her list of baby items.This is mine…Anytime Nathan is tired or fussy or just doesn’t know what to do with himself, this almost always the sure thing that will calm him down. Over time he fusses a lot less (he didn’t really fuss much to begin with anyway) and the only time I generally use this is toward the end of his wake time – I’ll put him in the sling so I can move around to do other stuff around the house while he quietly watches me from inside the sling. I always put him down while his eyes are still open, then he’ll go on to soothe himself to sleep – minimal or no crying involved!There are many articles which advocate the numerous benefits of babywearing – one article by Dr Sears even says that “the womb lasts eighteen months: nine months inside the mother, nine months outside”. I’m not sure if I buy into that concept completely, but I definitely love the closeness and cuddliness I get from carrying Nathan in the sling. I’m also certain…

Week 11 update

We’re midway through week 11. Nathan is growing rapidly… I can really feel him getting heavier as the days go by. He now weighs around 6.2kg – this is based on our primitive weighing method of stepping on the scales with baby, then stepping on again without baby, and then calculating the difference.Nathan’s smiles and laughs just keep getting more and more charming. Things that make him smile and chuckle include:1. Waking up fresh and happy after a good nap to mummy’s beautiful face looking down at him ^_^2. Mummy singing his current favourite songs – Cole Porter’s ‘True Love’ and Sunday School classic ‘Little By Little/He's Changing Me’3. Daddy playing bouncy-bouncy with him4. Practicing standing on his legs like a big boy (still with plenty of support and balance in the background from mum or dad)The big highlight this week was rolling over from tummy to back. On Monday morning tummy time, Nathan was just flopping around as usual and for a moment everything just clicked into pla…

Mummy the cow

So I just started pumping my milk regularly. I bought a Medela breast pump some weeks back but haven’t really used it except for the first couple of days after I got it to test it out.I’ve only been doing it once a day in the morning for the past few days. I’m planning to go back to work on a part-time/work-from-home basis but going into the office for a few hours once a week for some ‘face time’. So I’ll need a good supply stocked up for that, plus it’s always good to have some in stock for emergency situations. Not sure what the emergency would entail but always good to have something just in case right?Been doing lots of reading on pumping and handing expressed breast milk. Here are few things I learnt:1. Breast milk can be stored up to 3 days in the fridge and up to 3 months in the freezer2. Breast milk should never be heated in the microwave as it will change the chemical and molecule composition of the milk3. To warm up refrigerated breast milk, set the bottle it in some hot wat…

Night nursing

So as mentioned in my last post, we’re not quite over the sleeping through the night hurdle fully just yet. I’m fine with it for now… just take it step by step. Till then, night nursing will still be a regular part of my daily routine.So how are you set up for night nursing sessions?Here’s how our nursery is set up…(BTW, if you’re planning to have baby in a separate room, you might find it really helpful to have a bed in the room – especially in the early weeks when you’re still in exhaustion mode after the birth and baby is nursing around the clock. I found it much better to be able to lie down and nurse so I can doze off if I need to. It was also found it easier on my bottom because of my stitches)So for night nursing, the important tools for me are:1. Baby monitor – please excuse the tape, it’s a pre-loved monitor from a friend so the volume control is sometimes a bit fiddly, other than that it works perfectly2. Comfy pillows –  need plenty of good back and arm support to get into …

Week 10 update

Nathan is 10 weeks and 3 days today. His toothless gummy smile gets ever more charming each day and it’s what I look forward to seeing every morning. Unfortunately I can never capture that grin it all its gummy glory on camera because the moment we hold that shiny black and silver object up in front of him, he just stops and stares at it super intently…With a lot of coaxing and funny faces from mum and dad, he will eventually give us a sweet little smile like this…Then once we put the camera down, he'll flash us another gummy grin and we will be like “haaaaaiya… now only then you smile!”. Cheeky fella! Nevermind we’ll get that grin out of you on camera one day!As you can see, Nathan’s legs are getting stronger. He can support his weight on his legs pretty well, with of course some help from mum or dad to keep him balanced.He’s also already learnt to suck his fist. Not all the time though, usually when he’s tired, so it’s one of the cues I look out for to know when he’s ready for n…

Further thoughts on applying Babywise

It was interesting to see the feedback on my last post on the Babywise system. Seems like other new parents (just like me) are looking for reassurance that if they can’t follow the book exactly, it doesn’t make them bad parents. So as a follow on, here are some random thoughts on my own experiences when trying to apply all the systems and methods we’ve read or been taught about…On the “whys”
As a new parent, the biggest question I had when something unexpected happens is “why”. I believe it’s only natural to look for the “why” to help us determine the “how” to overcome the same problem the next time it happens. Why is baby finding it so hard to fall asleep? Why does baby want to nurse all the time? Why is baby not behaving like he should? There is of course no single magical answer, but I found it helpful to at least learn that I was not alone. I turned to numerous resources… parenting websites, blogs, forums, facebook, friends. I had my phone with me and was constantly surfing and …

Review of the Babywise system

Today I thought I’d tackle a more serious topic on the subject of the Babywise book (latest edition now called ‘Preparation for Parenting’) which many of our circle of friends here in Perth would be familiar with.Prior to conceiving, we attended a preparation for parenting course hosted by our church. It was a close-knit group of other fellow young adults who were thinking of becoming or about to become parents. We had a great time as every session was packed with jokes and laughter as we discussed various topics and asked all the burning questions on our mind about what to expect when the baby arrives.We went home armed with methods and systems and high ideals. Sure there would be challenges, but as long as we are disciplined and stick to the book, we will be fine.Then baby arrived on the scene and all the information on the great systems and methods we had pieced together started getting stretched at the seams (note that I didn’t say it fell apart, but it sure did stretch us).So wha…

Mugshots

Soooooo… we are planning a trip back to Malaysia sometime in November. While we were booking the tickets, we learnt a couple of things:

1. You cannot book international for your infant without his passport details – the website will just NOT let you move forward past that page

2. Your child MUST have his/her own passport – gone are the days of children travelling under mum’s passport

Hence the urgency of getting Nathan’s own passport had just stepped up a few notches. I had planned on getting it done over the next few weeks but because of the above points we then had to get it done ASAP.

In my research on the requirement and documents needed to get Nathan's passport organised, I came across this nifty little website called epassportphoto.com. Basically it's a free website where you can upload your own photos and use the online tool to crop and resize it to the passport photo requirements for your desired country.

Nathan has the privilege of being the product tester for this to…

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