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On babies all grown up

I saw this on someone’s Facebook post and thought that it is very true. When we have children we normally remember those frustrating moments where you really want to get some sleep at 3 am but your little fella just wants a cuddle or the time when you are already 10 minutes late for a wedding dinner but the little fella just refuse to have his dinner first and instead decided to do a poo. However, indeed these are the moments I treasure the most as kids really grow up way too soon. Enjoy every cuddle, kiss and hug, because when kids grow up all these will end way too soon.

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Why don’t you sleep through the night, darling?

I did mention before that JJ is still having issues sleeping through the night and will constantly wake up (or fuss for milk) at around 3 to 4 am almost every night. So last night it happened again but this time at 4 to 5 am. JJ was awake, eyes wide opened but he did not ask for milk. I tried to pat him back to sleep but he refuse and will flip in all sorts directions as if trying to find the right position to go back to sleep again. He tried sleeping on my pillow, the opposite direction, crouching up with his butt in the air, flat-out on the bed with face buried in his pillow and even tried lying on an elongated pillow with lower half of his body on the bed the upper half on me, and all these did not work.

It seems as though he had too much caffeine, resulting in constantly flipping and fussing nights. So last night I picked JJ up and cuddled him to sleep. We cuddled for a good 30 minutes before he start to feel drowsy and sleepy. So what did we do for that 30 minutes besides cuddling? We looked at each other eye to eye and had a good mummy-JJ time. Maybe because he knows we are not going to have any more of these cuddle moments soon, or maybe he just wants a cuddle to help him feel better.

Certainly I do enjoy all these mummy-JJ moments and love to watch JJ sleep (because to me that’s the most peaceful, calm and beautiful moments in life) but definately not at 4am in the morning. We can do better than this JJ, there is definately ways to make you sleep through the night without asking for milk, fussing or waking up at 3 or 4 am. If mummies out there you have any methods to sleep train your little ones do share with me.

Blurry pic of JJ playing before bed time

Blurry pic of JJ playing before bed time

JJ pretending to be sleeping

JJ pretending to be sleeping

The morning after, getting dress to go Gong Gong's place

The morning after, getting dress to go Gong Gong’s place

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Yes I love my classes at Julia Gabriel’s

When JJ turned 1 year old, I enrolled him to Julia Gabriel’s playnest classes. Yes it is abit early for a kid to go any sort of classes but the reason why I sent him for classes is because he is starting to learn how to talk and he is responsive to singing and music.

JJ has been going for classes at Julia Gabriel’s for almost 3 weeks now. And I must say he not only enjoy the classes but he really learns things from the classes. JJ adapts well to the structure of the classes right from the start which give the kids ample play time, just enough story time so as to not bore the kids, interaction time with other kids ( this is done through allowing kids to sit together to have a snack), enough singing to make the kids clap and laugh and innovative art/ creative activity works.

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So what is the verdict after 3 weeks and 7 lessons. JJ loved the classes as I could see that he laughed and smiled each time the instructor sings ( even on days he woke up on the side of bed and with a bad hair day). He carried on this attitude even at home when I sing to him. JJ also is able to pick up new skills faster like clapping each time his favorite tv show ends or showing me actions he learned in school.

When I see such progress he has made I know that the decision to bring him to classes this early is a right one. After all I do not want to give him too much pressure ( since local school system is enough to torture him in future) but want him to enjoy growing up as much as possible.

So what is the best part of the classes. When class ends, the kids could chase after bubbles. So that’s what I call being a kid is all about. Yes being carefree and chase bubbles.

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Do it or not do it?

Over the weekend we brought JJ to visit a pediatric surgeon to seek an opinion if JJ needs circumcision. Since his first Urinary Tact Infection (UTI) attack when he was 5 months old, I have been in constant worry when he will have the next attack again and I am so afraid that he will fall real sick as this will lower his immune system which allows bacteria to attack him again.

We went to see an urology pediatric specialist on this before and ran an MCU test on him to ensure that JJ did not have any reflux issue. Hence after 2 specialist visits and numerous scans, it has been concluded that he has a foreskin contamination issue which led to his UTI attack. Now 8 months after his first attack, comes the time where I have to make the decision for him to remove the foreskin so that we can reduce the risks of having UTI related to foreskin contamination.

Pros of removing the foreskin

1. Reduce the risks of having UTI

2. It will be easier to bathe and keep him clean especially going to preschool or child care in 1.5 years time

3. At this young age, he is the most adaptable to changes and healing process is fastest for him

Cons of removing the foreskin

1. Losing a skin

2. Mummy will be the one crying and worrying heaps and spending time with a very cranky toddler ( the pediatric surgeon showed me photos of how things will be like after the surgery and the recovery process. There will be scabbing and redness at the “humming bird’ area for toddler of JJ’s age)

3. Same as number 2 but more worries on whether JJ will be able to adapt without the foreskin and if infections will set in due to the surgery.

4. May not 100% remove the possibility of having another UTI attack, well maybe in JJ’s case remove 80% of that chance happeninga again.

So do we do it or not do it? Maybe he won’t get any more UTI and what happened 8 months ago was an one off incident. But the possiblities of future infections are there and also seeing him shiver and rolling back his eyes when the UTI hits him plus the cranky 3 day stay in the hospital (not to mention the 2 months recovery process) was really tough on that little guy. Maybe we should circumsize him after all to prevent future attacks.

Ok JJ is having high fever as I’m writing this. Hope the fever won’t turn out to be UTI.

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Scrapbooking: My all time favourite hobby

Well one may have thought scrapbooking is all about recycling unwanted papers and turning it to beautiful pieces of art. Well maybe that is true in the old days but times have changed and scrapbooking could be an expensive hobby now since now there are new ideas and definitions to scrapbooking.

I started scrapbooking and crafting when I first started working. Because all these premiums and beautiful papers and paraphernalia, could really cost a bomb and being a student I can’t afford to pay for such expensive papers. I have a regular scrapbooking shop that I frequent to get my scrap booking supplies and even a huge scrap booking box to keep my materials. Crafting is always my hobby since school days, and I always dreamt of having a crafting café. Now with a toddler in tow, I did more scrapbooking and crafting then ever before as I would like to keepsake and lock some of the beautiful memories I have of JJ and my family. Here are some ideas to share.

Hand made flowers and potting ideas

Hand made flowers and potting ideas

Hand made tulip flowers, with pinwheels and cards potted in button or pebbles filled vase.

Photo scrapbooking

Photo scrapbooking

Happy Birthday photo frame

Happy Birthday photo frame

Hand made photo frames using scrapbooking and 3D ideas. I have made a lot of these photo frames but with different materials and theme. They are now stuck using velcro tapes from 3M on my photo wall collage. Sorry for the poor images as it was taken from my photo collage wall directly.

My scrapbooking stash

My scrapbooking stash

These are some of the scrapbooking and crafting things I have. (yes I have placed my stickers and crafting things in folders and zip locks as it help me to keep things organised. Speaking of organisation, it is a whole separate post all together. Home organisation has became an obsession for the “She sisters”) And now I plan to do something using the finger and toes prints I got with the help of my little helper JJ over the weekend.

JJ finger prints at 13 months old

JJ finger prints at 13 months old

Let’s see what I can come up with using these tiny prints I got from the little guy. Do hang around and if you have great scrapbooking or crafting ideas do share them with me.

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Definition of a toddler

What is a toddler? From Wikipedia a toddler is a child between the ages of one and three and the toddler years are a time of great cognitive, emotional and social development. Well that is very true, toddler years are the most amazing and life changing period of a child’s and parent’s life. So what is my definition of a toddler? Here’s my top 10 definition!

10. A compact sized little being, aged one to three.

9. Able to make sounds reaching almost 3,000 decibels without even twitching an eyebrow.

8. Has the ability to ensure that at all meal times food will always land on the floor and none in the stomach or any where close to the mouth area

7. Has an energy level equivalent to 3,000 energizer batteries and able sing, dance, jump, hop, clap and eat all at the same time and all day long even minutes before going to bed. (see who is the real master at multi-tasking)

6. Wakes up at 4am in the morning to play or demand breakfast (usually milk) and repeats this routine at least 67973057 times before calling it quits (yes I am still battling with the 4 am night feed and I am going to win this battle, we have 58493878 times to go. Boy JJ you are real stubborn on this.)

5. Has the ability and the urge to pee and defecate on any possible surface and under any situations. (JJ defecated on a 1 day old car seat and the contents leaked out of his diapers and all over the new car seat. We had to make an emergency stop at a nearby mall to clean him and the car seat . Back home, while he was taking his nap, I had to dismantle the car seat and thoroughly clean the contents stuck inside.)

4. Giggles at the simplest things in life (when I say STARS with a smile and emphasis, JJ finds it amusing and gives us heaps of giggles)

3. Able to entice people (and of course pretty ladies in the case of JJ) to give hugs, kisses, winks and love freely to him

2. Plays pee-ka-poo with mummy before bed time. And will cuddle up to mummy and wink or smile at mummy moments before falling asleep. (cuddling is also common at 4am in the morning, not really the best time for cuddles, but I still love the warmth and love from JJ)

1. Able to do all of the above mentioned and repeating it 365 (or maybe more) times a year for the next 2 years.

I love number 2, 3 and 4 in particular about my toddler but it is the rest of the less glamorous, frustrating and angry moments that makes my toddler so special. Sometimes when I look back at the things that JJ had done, it is really funny and amazing in some ways (like point number 5) and it’s moments like these that I will miss most. Let’s see what the next 2 years has installed for both of us and probably this top 10 definitions will change by then.

My toddler JJ

My toddler JJ

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Food for the cheeky fella (season 2)

I tried making something different for JJ’s dinner on Sunday again. This time we go local – mee sua (wheat flour noodles) soup with spinach and hard boil egg yoke. It is relatively simple to make and these are what you need:

1 packet of mee sua

1 hard boil egg (just need the egg yoke, minced)

2 stalks of spinach (washed)

Corn and ikan bilis broth

Ingredient for mee sua soup

Ingredients for mee sua soup

First get ready the corn and ikan bilis broth, which I mentioned before in my previous star pasta recipe post. Next boil the broth, then add in the mee sua and spinach and cook till soft. Once done, just scoop the mee sua and spinach into a bowl together with the soup. Lastly, add the boiled egg yoke on top and serve!

Mee sua soup with spinach and egg yoke

Mee sua soup with spinach and egg yoke

The taste test by cheeky fella? JJ did not really like it because he is not used to the texture and taste. JJ took 2 mouthful of the mee sua soup and refused to have his dinner (by refusing I meant, he shake his head violently when the spoon of food goes anywhere close to his face, he threw everything I gave him on the floor and was screaming half the time while feeding). Well he is very used to eating porridge for lunch and dinner and cereal for breakfast hence a change of taste meant that it will take time to get used to it. So the cheeky fella went to bed without dinner (he had milk 2 hours before dinner though) and did not make a big fuss over it. We will try this again to let JJ get used to other food and textures.  So mummies out there if you have any recipes that your little ones adore do share with me.

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What is wrong darling? Is it because of the bad hair day?

I noticed something changed in JJ during the weekend that past. He would throw tantrums during breakfast on mornings where he had to go for classes at Julia Gabriel’s. It is not because he does not like the classes, in fact he adores the singing and playing in classes and would always smile and giggle during classes.

The thing is the classes are at 9 am hence I have to get him up at 745am, then wash up, change and have breakfast. Usually JJ takes 10 minutes to finish his breakfast but on Sunday morning he simply refused to eat anything, threw every single toy I gave him on the floor and even puked out all his cereal after the final spoon of cereal went into his mouth. ( so imagine the clean up and the rush to Julia Gabriel’s as we left the house at close to 9 am). And Monday morning, same thing happens. JJ refused breakfast again but this time no puking. Just tantrums, throwing toys and a really bad hair day.

Then come this morning, no classes in the morning, JJ woke up naturally at 730 am and happily finished all his cereal with giggles before sending him for his scheduled vaccination.

Maybe JJ really dislike being waken from his deep slumber sleep to go classes ( or because we caused him to have a bad hair day but that does not seem like the case since he is smiling in classes.) Or maybe he is approaching his terrible twos year hence these are developmental phases. Hopefully, in the coming weeks JJ will be better or else I must think of ways to deal with this better.

Smiling despite having a bad hair day at JG's Monday class

Smiling despite having a bad hair day at JG’s Monday class

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Jayson’s first poo in the potty

Yep, JJ did his first poo in the potty yesterday and again today. I was elated. I bought a potty for him after our visit at the Zoo on Friday and on Saturday just before dinner, he gave the “I think I am going to poo look” ( all mummies will recognise that look on their child in an instant). So before he started pooing, I sat him on the potty and helped him to do a poo. And within minutes JJ was done. I did not expect it to be so fast and quick, I thought there will be some training, protesting, screaming and tears involved to make him do his first poo in the potty. Then today, before breakfast he gave me the “I think I am going to poo look” again and we repeated the same process successfully without any protest or tears. Hope we can constantly repeat this peaceful process at least 90% of the time (keeping fingers crossed). Indeed, we are taking small steps towards toilet training but I think we are nearing there already!

Here’s a picture of JJ’s personalised potty. I dug into my art and craft box and saw these funky letter stickers hence I decided to personalise his potty to make it special for him.

JJ potter (back)

JJ’s potter (back)

JJ potty (front)

JJ’s potty (front)

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Our trip to Singapore Zoo and River Safari

My sister and me came up with a family tradition where any of our kids turn one we will bring the whole brood to Singapore Zoo. We did that once when my niece turned one in 2011 and now again when JJ just turned one in 2013.

Zoo tickets

Zoo tickets

The last time when we went to the zoo in 2011, they were still building the River Safari hence our main focus was activities in the Zoo then. But this time round, the River Safari has opened its doors and our main focus of this visit are the Pandas, where they are housed. As the name says it River Safari, meant that we are expected to see all kinds of different marine animals and to be exact, mainly FISHES. JJ had seen so much of them in the first half of the River Safari trail (and maybe I mentioned the word FISH like 300 times), such that when we came to a tank filled with small colourful fishes, JJ actually mimicked me and said the word FISH.

Long mouthed fish

Long mouthed fish

Next up the pandas. Wonder why the pandas are placed in the River Safari, that is because they are closely associated with the Yangtze River. Basically, River Safari features all the different rivers in the world and showcased marine animals that resided in these rivers. We only managed to snap pictures of one of the pandas as the other one was a little camera shy.

A sleeping panda

A sleeping panda

Then we went to the giant aquarium for to view the marine animals being fed by the zoo keepers. By then JJ was already dead beat and was sleeping in the pram at 11 am which is not his usual nap time. Maybe all the fish viewing made him really tired. My niece was still pretty energetic and insisted on seeing the pandas again but we managed to cajole her that watching sea cows being fed was much better than looking at panda’s sleeping. Sea cows are actually mermaid-seal like looking marine animals and they are huge weighing at least 1.1 tons.

Sea cows

Sea cows

Well after spending about 2 hours in River Safari, we went to the Zoo for lunch at the Ah Meng Restaurant. By the time we were done with lunch, the sun was scorching hot so we decided to take the tram ride to look at the animals which was more comfortable than walking the Zoo with the kids. We only stopped at the kids play area for the carousel ride (which the kids loved it) and viewed the white tiger before heading home at 3pm.

Carousel ride

Carousel ride

Yes it was a short visit for us at the Zoo compared to the previous time. This time we did not manage to watch any animal shows unlike the last time where we watched like 3 shows. Well, with a 3 year old toddler and a newly turned 1 year old screaming toddler in tow it is virtually impossible to sit down in peace to just watch the giraffes for just 2 minutes needless to say a 20 minutes animal show. Still it is a tradition we try to up keep and definitely we will be back in the future when the brood grows. Wish us luck on the next visit then.

Sis and the brood

Sis and the brood