Sunday, June 22, 2008

Contented

We enjoyed this week at home. Together with Eliza.

For the first two days being home i managed to cook, wash the clothes, vacuum the floor, mop the floor, visit a friend, take walks and outings with Eliza...it was really fun. sometimes i think it's better being busy than not busy, cos by friday, i've done most of the housework and was free to spend the whole day with Eliza. it turns out that i don't really know what to do in between naps and mealtimes. that afternoon i hung out in the bedroom for abt an hour, Eliza playing with her toys, me singing or reading to her occasionally, me reading magazine...and eventually we fell asleep together. actually it was nice. the not-so-nice part is her waking up crying. that day she seemed to be hungry early all the time and was always crying when she woke from her naps. still it was a nice day. (i didn't want to go out cos we were going to go airport for dinner and not going out saves me money too)

We had friends over on thursday for dinner and i managed to whip up a meal of sheperd's pie, pan-fried carrots, canned soup and yummy bacon-wrapped drumsticks. suddenly cooking seems manageable with her. although there was once she woke up from her sleep and cried while i was frying the minced beef...then i had to quickly decide if i should leave the stove on or off. eventually i turned the heat down, went to 'save' her and came back to fry it while carrying her. oh...the fate of the minced beef? overcooked.
this was better. i did it fast and quick..the rest of the work as done smelling the drumsticks cook in the oven...mouth-watering!


Some things i realized over this week...
- Eliza can sit on her own happily at the same position for a long time, that is unless she has something more interesting she wants to reach for. ie the remote control, books or just something new
- Sleep is something you can't control & predict in a baby...she'll sleep 1hr for her morning nap today, 30mins in the next day. i took a nap with her, hoping she'll sleep abt 1hr but i was woken up early 1/2hr later.
- When Eliza's not in a good mood, forget about putting her down anywhere. carry her until her mood changes...or at least until she has had her milk.
- Eliza sleeps much better when she's sleeping with us
- Eliza completes us
You know how in the movie Jerry Maguire, in the touching ending, Dorothy told Jerry that he completes her? Ww & I were having a quiet Saturday night, while Eliza slept peacefully, and we have the house to ourselves (which is really nice). and we reflected on how wonderful it is that Eliza is in our lives, that she completes us, that she's like the gum that sticks us closer together; not that we are not close, but that she added another dimension of joy into our life.
Only mums and dads will understand.

My mil says she's not like any other baby she has taken care of, cos Eliza is such a curious baby, itching to touch this touch that (gosh i wonder what it'll be like when she can walk!). And i feel she's a cheerful baby who makes us happy...and her cuteness amuses us at times.

This place is her playground..where i'll put her in the middle of the mattress with her toys to play with....keeps her entertained for quite some time.


The exersaucer i rented has the only purpose of keeping her 'standing' or seated while she plays with her own toys...after a while i'll find her toys on the floor around the perimeter of the exersaucer.


Eliza loves tags...she's finding her bolster tag really interesting to check out!


Yummy milk! check out her thumbs up!


Daddy playing with her...she's super elated!


this is the other 'toy station' but here i'll have to watch her...still it's nice seeing her enjoy being seated...quite a lot of poses she did here :P


oh....you know what...Eliza has discovered how to undo her diapers! :S at least the rompers prevent her from trying to do so.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Eliza crawls

video

She does crawl...somewhat...or more like pull herself over. Of course..hear her whine when she can't get to what she wants. I wish i have those floor mats i can leave her to roll around and crawl around.

(the books are a great motivation...cos we don't let her 'eat' the books and she doesn't get to touch them as much)

On breastfeeding

*this was something i write quite a while ago but didn't manage to post it cos i couldn't finish writing it. but here it is.

I was very sure i wanted to breastfeed Eliza from the start and thank God that despite being a HepB carrier, I was able to do so. (i did a blood test and the results were ok, so my gynae gave the green light..i think for some people they may not be able to, like for my mum's case)

Breastfeeding is quite a popular thing now, esp with all the better facilities and things (ie clothes, shawls, etc) and all the publicity. But of course it's cos it's the best 'food' for baby, after all God thought of it, else how was Eve able to provide for her baby? There's much to read online about the benefits of breastfeeding online so i don't really want to write here.

Anyway i was aiming to BF at least 6 months and if possible, as long as i can. We had a thought that we could sell away the electric pump after 6 months. I had thought and planned how i was going to wean Eliza to FM (formula milk) at 6 months (it's like yays, i thought, i can try the sample FM). Now that Eliza is 6 months old, and i have 1/3 of my freezer filled up with frozen BM, i am thinking of continuing till she's at least one year old.

What's great about BF?
1. Save money.
I really don't know how much will i have to spend if i bought FM. i heard it's one tin a week? I absolutely got no idea. Anyway what have i spent so far?
- The electric pump is about $600. I have a manual pump which was a gift.
- I bought the Lanisoh milkbags, 4 packs (100 pieces) for about $48. (buy online!!! it's so much cheaper than buying from retail stores in SG...got mine from SingaporeMotherhood forums for $11-$12 for each box of 25) i still have 1 pack unused.
- Electricity to boil water to heat up chilled BM
2. In the first 3 months, it was convenient. Baby hungry, latch on, baby filled. no need to heat water, sterilize bottles, etc etc. but i started transiting to bottle feeds quite early on to prepare for my return to work.
3. Bonding with baby.
It's a mummy & baby thing and it was quite nice to be wanted. Though i don't think bottle-feeding makes bonding lesser...we gaze into each other's eyes and i'll talk to her or sing to her while she drinks. moreover, bottle feeding allows different family members to help care for Eliza and let her get to know them. Even Ww's dad fed her...his first time feeding baby.
4. Slimming down
Really, like what they say, it takes 9 months to gain that much weight, so don't expect yourself to lose weight in a month. I can safely say that now i'm back to my pre-preg weight (and 1kg lighter!). That's what breastfeeding does...transfer good fats and nutrients to a growing baby..and helps mummy 'work out'. Needing to eat 500calories more a day is quite good too...but since i eat as i used to (ie. just enough), i get to lose weight. Another thing is...i get to eat more!!! buahahaa...but more healthily lah.

The downside?
1. Spending time expressing milk
I knew i had to start practicing early...in preparation for my return to work. At first it was how to use the pump. Then it was how to express milk when there's no one around to take care of Eliza. ie. how to keep her entertained and happy for 15-30min or to express while she's asleep...and then hope she doesn't wake up until i'm done.
Then it was spending precious time expressing at work. When i returned to work, i expresed at 5-6hr intervals, which means twice at work and 1hr in total. Not too relaxing when you have work at hand you want to get done quickly. Now i've gotten used to expressing at 8hr intervals, i wonder if i can stretch to 12hr intervals.
2. Limited time outside
If you have to calculate when is the next mid-day timing to express milk, that just cuts short your time you can hang out outside, unless i bring the manual pump along, express in the toilet and throw the milk away. time to hang out outside was shorter in the earlier months cos the pumping intervals were shorter, i could just bear with the engorgement or worse, worry whether it will affect supply.

anyway, i wonder whether i can last till 1yr now...wondering whether i should start introducing formula milk in case she rejects it. my aunt whose baby is 2 months older than Eliza is encouraging me to continue as long as i can. So i will, for my cute lil gal.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Clingy Eliza

Eliza has started to show signs of clingy-ness and separation anxiety. she loves to hang around mummy & my mil. sometimes when we leave her on her own, she'll cry out in protest, as if wanting us to stay or telling us 'don't leave me alone!'.

My baby gal is growing up. I suddenly feel as if a new stage is here.

It's gonna be a busy week. I pray for good rest (sleep!) and wisdom to be a domestic goddess...cos i'm gonna be doing the housework and cook and take care of Eliza while Ww is busy with his Masters course & then school meetings.

Menu for tmr:
- fish with papaya soup
- stir-fried veg
- ... (i'm still thinking) some meat

let's hope i can pull it off...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I love my happy baby

Weaning is a challenge sometimes. I wonder whether i should give her more cereal or should i add more pureed carrots or the fruits or the fruit cereal. Once she isn't happy with what she eats, she'll push her spoon away, or close her mouth or start crying, and that's the end of mealtime.

So far the conclusion is...
- she loves her brown rice cereal (from Healthy Times)
- she also loves her Barley cereal (from Healthy Times too)
- she doesn't quite like her Apple & Pear cereal (from Organix) i think it tastes a lil sour..it's the apple
- neither does she quite fancy the pureed carrots, strawberry yoghurt,
- Sweet veg from Heinz Organic is still acceptable
- the teether from Heinz is a blast (see photo later)
- all fruits in large chunks for her to suck out the juice and chew on is fantastic

so i need to expand her taste buds and will try green veg next week. hope it works ok. a mum suggested using ikan bilis cos it has protein and taste good with porridge or cereal. ok i'll try!

Before mealtime...my happy lil girl

what is she reaching for?...(my fil playing with her)

sometimes she likes her food so much that she'll snatch the spoon from me to eat...and what a strong grip she has!


check out the teething biscuit...she loves it so much it's all over on her face...happily :)


Eliza has been trying to crawl...or pull herself over..videos when i have time...if i ever have.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

After all's sick and done

Now Eliza's just having her runny nose...mummy fell sick on saturday with high fever. it went down when i took fever meds and climbed back up hours later...till by sunday night it was 38.9. went to see a doc on monday and the meds worked so well i was almost prefectly fine by afternoon. but i have sore throat now...almost losing my voice...so i'm trying to drink lotsa water, eat well, rest well and recover asap.

On everyday things like....sleep
At 6mths Eliza has started to change the way she sleeps. She's sleeping better nowadays, usually waking only once and it's in the early morning. once she was up at 530am...singing! i was so sleepy i half listened to her coo away and snoozed till 6am, when i decide to wake up. i tried creeping out of the room (usually to warm her milk or to prepare stuff to express milk) but she saw me and was excitedly trying to crawl to the corner of her cot to get as close to me, and wanted me to carry her.

On everyday things like...naps
Eliza's in the transition of dropping her late afternoon nap. If she naps in the afternoon till 3pm, she will stay up till after her dinner and sleep earlier than normal, say about 730pm, instead of 830-9pm. Her morning naps are also later, pushing it to 10am instead of her usual 9am.

On everyday things like...milk & soilds
Now that Eliza has started on solids for about 3 weeks, she has still not eaten much variety of foods yet. She has tried brown rice which is her all-time favourite. I've added fruit puree / carrot purree / Heinz sweet veg puree to her brown rice and so far she's been ok. It usually takes her one or two tries for her to get used to the taste. I gotta let her try new foods!
With introduction of solids, i have also made changes to her milk schedule. cutting down from a 6 milk feeds a day to 5 milk feeds a day. but i'm still adjusting her timing, esp since my mil feeds her at a different time as i do. still gotta sort this out.

On everyday things like...play
We somewhat play all day long, rolling around the bed, singing songs to her, trying to make her laugh, tickle her, hug her, try to read to her (with her always trying to grab the book to eat), carry her around to see new things...the list goes on. sometimes i dunno what to do and will leave her to her own devices in her playpen or the excersaucer.

On everyday things like...physical development / motor skills
I knew this day will come...at one point i wondered when Eliza will start rolling over, then in a day or two she did it quite well. and sometime back, she discovered the wonders of rolling over and back, which adds to more vigilance on our part. no more leaving her on the bed. Also, changing diapers on the bed after bathtime is tiring! she'll roll back and forth in a blink of an eye...refusing to stay on her back for few seconds..which usually leaves us in quite a struggle. when she sleeps, she'll also turn back and forth till she finds a comfortable position. we crazy-over-Eliza parents love watching her different sleep positions...
Eliza has learnt also to stay seated up, unsupported, which i didn't quite realize for quite a while. usually she'll sway to the left and right, front and back. but i think practice in her pram helps too...cos she'll hardly ever want to lie down! even when we push it up the escalator (and the pram has to be tilted back), she will insist on wanting to sit up (imagine doing sit ups on those inclined platform). Gosh i worry for her...will it be bad for her back?

This is her while we were at SKS....and that was in mid-may.

I didn't know she was so interested in Veggie Tales...kept her 'glued' for at least 5mins.


This was at Raffles City. They lend you these strollers to walk around the shopping centre..which was quite useful. the harness is really important..cos even though it's for kids who can sit...and so, lean back in the stroller, Eliza refuse to lean back...she would rather lean forward. i think there's more things to check out while you lean forward. cute curious gal :P

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Eliza falls sick

After all the weekend of fun and play with her cousins, mummy spotted her having runny nose on tuesday evening. i wasn't a good sign even though she's bouncy and chirpy as ever. come wednesday, daddy called to say that Eliza was coughing and had yellowish phelgm. it wasn't that bad and we gave her fever med when i came home after work, knowing from experience that after 1-2 days she'll get feverish. she was getting more cranky that evening and that forebodes a tough night ahead.

surely it was a tough night. when baby's nose get runny or stuck, it's hard to breathe well. worse when baby is lying down. so Eliza wanted and needed to be carried with her head on my shoulder to fall sleep. and cos i was tired, i'll fall asleep with her in that position. if i woke up, i'll try to put her beside me so i can lie down to zzz. sometimes i succeed, sometimes she wakes up and i'll have to carry her all over again and pat her to sleep. we did this over and over again thru the whole night, with poor Eliza sniffing and rubbing her face on my shirt, crying when she's not comfortable. gosh i was so zonked out by the next morning. had to nap twice to be awake again. Thank God for Ww & his parents who played with her while i snoozed.

we brought her to the PD in the afternoon. (cos if i brought her in the morning, i would have waited like 3hrs...in the afternoon it probably only takes 1.5hrs..still it's that bad. why are they so slowwww?!!?). i've learnt from past experience (actually only 1 experience when Eliza was sick) that it's best to go to the PD instead of a normal family doctor...cos they have different (and i think better meds suited for baby). the nose drop is great to clear her blocked nose...great meds! i'm happy.
this is us at the PD's clinic...daddy's 2nd time with us there. we waited so long we had time to rent DVDs, collect some stuff, change Eliza's diapers cos we thought she pooped which she didn't, and feed her milk (which wasn't enough for her).



Eliza got much better that evening :) she's still recovering and really thank God she's much much better. was supposed to visit YJ&A+Amos but cos Eliza's sick, it's definately no-no. any mum knows how terrible it gets when bb is sick, so we really don't want another to suffer. i think the younger the baby is, the more difficult.

We were wondering how she got sick since mummy & daddy isn't. and suspect it could be the many hugs and kisses her cousins shower on her that caused it. the two younger ones are always sick..somehow, not serious enough but sometimes they'll cough all thru the night and give my mil no sleep. so sigh...really must watch them really closely next time, lest they try to sneak a kiss on her. even i don't kiss her on the lips!! (ok they try...but we always shoo them away)

since she was much better yesterday (she was sick frm wed), we brought her along when we went to visit WY&S new place at Punggol. it was late but she was too curious to stay asleep, happily playing with Auntie Shari. (i love their sofa...so wiiiideeeee & comfy)

...and daddy...

and herself...(actually it's daddy behind her tickling her)


ohoh, we discovered the Beco carrier is better sleep inducer than us (cos she wiggles around too much to carry her steadily) and the pram (cos she'll wail in it). so we have started bringing her to church in the Beco instead. after all, isn't it nice to fall asleep in daddy's or mummy's arms..or close to their heart?

this was taken during two of different weeks we went to church...same baby, same sleeping style. :P

I'm still backposting

This is about what happened last week and it's like going to be the end of this week. Anyway while the boys were here, somehow i felt like it was such a busy weekend. it was surely fun going out and all that, seeing that they're having good exposure of fun & learning (as compared to watching tv). still it was kinda exhausting. Eliza was enjoying their company anyway, being kissed and hugged all over by her cousins. One thing we had to bear with is the noise level, it's high all day, so we always had to remind them to keep their volume down, esp when Eliza's asleep and after 830pm.

Eliza turned 6mths old!! and she decided to start it with a bang...holding her own bottle. what's better than to have some control over yr own food.


we love this toy that my colleagues gave Eliza, (the boys have almost memorized all the songs) and Eliza's fav part of the toy?...the tag. if she could talk she might tell us that it's nice to eat


Playing with ah-gong...super happy :D


That evening we went to West Coast park to let the boys run about and try the fun playground there...bet they enjoyed it. It was somewhat scary to them at first but once they got over the fear, it was much better.


Family photo :)