Tummy Time!

@ 6 weeks 1 day old
"Look Ma, I got my cheeks off the ground!"

Favourite New Toy

Enjoying her musical book of nursery rhymes with daddy.

Snot Buster

I probably spoke too early about Bubbles sleeping through the night.

At around 3am these few nights, she would wake up uncomfortable. Her breathing would sound difficult, and you can tell that she has a blocked nose.

Poor Bubs would wriggle and make pitiful noises. Her eyes would be closed and she would swing her arms around, occasionally making a swipe at her nose and mouth. Once in a while, she would let out a little small sniffly cry.

The paediatrician gave us a nasal spray and a nose sucker. The poor girl screamed her head off the one time we used the spray. After all, it is kind of yucky to have something sprayed up your nose when you are half awake in the middle of the night. Now, I just use the nose sucker to try to get out any loose snot.
Hopefully she gets out of this phase soon. We've already resorted to having the air-conditioner automatically turned off in the middle of the night, and once even letting her sleep in her little rocker chair. The reclining position seems to help her breathing. Poor baby :(

I too, want uninterrupted sleep again.

The Light

She is like a little plant.

She enjoys looking towards light.

Be it from mummy and daddy's big bed...

...or from the little rocker chair inherited from Little Missy...

The Dinner Date

Roboman and I were given a chance to go on a dinner date.

The parents offered (with much pleasure on their part), to babysit Bubbles for one evening.

They came over the night before, and I orientated them to all the gadgets they might have to use. Things like the steam steriliser, the bottle warmer and the various types of bottles and teats. I showed them where my expressed breastmilk is stored, and gave instructions about how much and when to feed.

They were also shown which diapers to use (some are now too small), and where diaper changing neccessities are kept.

On the evening of the dinner date, Bubbles woke up late for her feed. We 4 adults were hanging around waiting for her to wake up, as I planned to feed her before leaving. Our reservation was for 7pm, and our little girl woke up at 6.30pm! I went ahead to latch her on anyway, then passing her to her grandparents for a diaper change as I took the opportunity to dress up.

I put on my contact lenses, patted on some make-up, and wore a pretty top that I couldn't have worn with a nursing bra.

At the door, I decided to wear a pair of 4 inch heels. Boy did it feel good after not wearing heels for a couple of months! I actually felt pretty and didn't smell of milk.

It was a lovely dinner - good food and time alone with the husband with no interruptions. Except for interruptions of the mind! I couldn't help but keep thinking of how Bubbles was doing, and perhaps spoke of her once too often during dinner. I guess that's what it means to be a mother!

Special Bling

I met Aunty Imp for the first time recently. She is very pretty and had on a beautiful ring. She took the ring out and put it on my finger. I could feel the weight as I wriggled my hand. All the faces looking down at me laughed. I wonder why?

Maybe someday mummy will explain to me why people were laughing and what the ring means to Aunty Imp.

I like Aunty Imp :) She makes me feel snug in her arms. Yeah!

God is Good...All the Time

I have a piece of thanksgiving to share.

I did think hard about whether to post this or not, and decided that if I don't, I am not doing justice to the sheer wonderfulness of God.

Those of you who have been following this blog would have read this entry. It was written in early August this year, when we heard the bad news.

Bad news of Roboman losing his job. It was a most sudden and unexpected occurance, given that it was something new he was asked to set up and head. We received the news right after our Babymoon and his last day was just 2 weeks before I was due to deliver.

There was no one to blame for it, as serious illness had caused the pulling out of the key player and owner. Still, a new person was just hired to run the operations, and a company bash was already being planned, so a closure was the last thing anyone expected.

I still remember feeling stunned when I heard the news, just as Roboman must have felt, when he did.

We prayed for God to intervene, and trusted that He will provide. I have to admit that there were times when I allowed worry to seep in, especially with the knowledge that many friends in the industry have found it difficult to find new jobs after losing theirs. And we were expecting a new mouth to feed.

But God has provided. Not just to the brim, but till our bowls have overflowed.

He let my husband be with me during the last 2 weeks of pregnancy. Through my challenging confinement period, and even 2 weeks after. The new father got to spend lots of time with his little daughter. Bathing her everyday and taking charge of night-time diaper changes. He had the opportunity to see her grow, hear her first gurgles, help organise her first month parties, and take her for doctor check-ups.

And as an icing on the cake, a new job has been provided. Roboman is starting work soon.

In God's perfect timing. Praise Him!

Let Sleeping Babies Lie

I'm excited!

I think I've reached the end of the choppy sleep tunnel!

Bubbles has been self-regulating to sleep through the night. Well, 'through the night' now is a total of 5 hours - which is bliss for sleep-deprived new mummies like me.

On Tuesday night, she started binge feeding (ok, it is called cluster feeding) every hour from about 8pm till 12midnight, then slept for about 4 hours through. On Wednesday night, she freaked me out by demanding to be fed every hour from 5pm till 12 midnight. We struggled with her as we didn't think (silly us) she needed to be fed so much. I even tried to give her the bottle to give my boobs a rest, but she flatly refused it. Then, like a reward to us, she slept all the way through till 5am!

It was with disbelief when I woke up at 5 to her hungry cry. I stared at the clock, thinking I was seeing things!

Finally, she did binge feeding again last evening. But in a calmer manner, and at every 1.5 hours rather than 1 hour. Then she slept from about 1am to 6am!

I'm a happy mummy, and so proud of my baby :) She's only 5 weeks and 3 days old!

Let's hope this keeps up!

The star of the parties

We had to hold 2 parties one week apart as we had too long a guest list. The first party was Bubbles' first experience being outside of the home or the hospital. It was also the first time she was meeting so many people.

She was a complete angel. She laid in her stroller totally mersmerised by the many faces peering down at her. Her eyes were wide, and she turned her head this way and that to absorb all the many things to see. She lasted almost the entire party like this, until it was time to feed. I then came to her rescue with my mobile milk bar.

She was a little less chirpy at her 2nd party though. Awake yes, but not as impressed with the party ongoings. It was probably our fault, as after my confinement period ended a few days before, we took her out almost every day either for lunch or dinner or both! Still, our little trooper only fussed when it was feed time, where I struggled to feed her under a nursing poncho. She then wanted to sleep, but I left her out still as there were still many guests milling around.

I didn't intentionally steer away from pink! She looks nice in pink too - but I also love these chirpy colours on her :)

She's passed the one month mark!

We survived 2 parties held in the honour of Bubbles.

She is loved,
and received all these many gifts from people dear to us.

I had a great time opening them.
It felt like a childhood Christmas for me!

Our little family

Just because I really like this photo :)


Full breastfeeding is tiring and requires a lot of commitment from a mother. I feel the strain on my back, and the intense tiredness during night feeds.

But I enjoy watching Bubbles' every move, and scrutinising every little bit of her while she feeds. How she furiously shakes her head from side to side to get a good grasp of the nipple, how she bobs her little head when she feeds, the little gurgly sounds she makes when swallowing, the funny facial expressions, super loud burp sounds she makes, and the contented sigh she gives when feeding ends.

I know this experience will not last forever, so I shall perservere through panda-ed eyes to enjoy these shared moments with her.

Over and Under Stimulation

One of the things we have been struggling with as new parents is how to meet Bubbles' every need. Physical needs aside (that's another story), we are confused by just how much mental stimulation she needs (or not).

At less than one month of age, she is already very alert and seems to want to 'play' in between her feeds. She constantly moves and looks around. So we try to amuse her by singing to her, carrying her around, and showing her a black, white and red book that we have been given.

Most of the time however, she gets interested only for a short while before starting to complain with some whines, that if left unattended, lead on to wails. So we keep having to change what we do with her.

The trouble comes however, when she actually gets tired and doesn't want to play anymore. We haven't been able to differentiate her tired vs want to play cries, and that has led to much frustration, we believe, both on her part as well as ours. When she gets over-stimulated or over-tired, she takes forever to fall asleep and keeps crying. I have carried and cuddled her to calm her so much so that my lower back sometimes feels like it is going to break.

This is a phase I believe we have to ride out. But in the meantime, it is really tough going.

Mummy's Bath

As part of confinement practices, I haven't been allowed to bathe 'normally'. For the 1st week, I didn't bathe at all (eek) and subsequently, I could only do so with a herbal bath, and even then not everyday.

Thankfully, I have the air-conditioner turned on most of the time, and the ceiling fan blowing as well. I have survived by blotting my head with facial blotters on non-bath days and washing essential bits of myself with warm water.

The bath water prepared for me by my MIL and helper requires a lot of work to prepare. They boil 4 stock pots each time to fill 2 big pails. Besides the usual packet herbs, lemongrass and coriander seeds are pounded and thrown in. The smell is heavenly - much like the kind of bath water you get at a spa. I feel my pores open up and cleansed each time I bathe.

Bath Time!

She loves the baths daddy gives her :)

The Blues

I have been asked: Have you been weepy?

My answer is a resounding Yes.

We have a bundle of joy, no doubt. But afterbirth pains, lack of sleep, confinement rules, breastfeeding challenges, troubleshooting cries, fear, feelings of inadequacy, lack of personal time and privacy etc have made my tears flow easily these past few weeks.

I have also cried watching Bubbles cry. Especially when we can't figure out why she is crying or how to stop her from doing so.

The first month is definitely challenging, and nothing comforts me more than hearing from other mothers who have gone through it.

Thank you all - you know who you are - who have texted/emailed/dropped by with your words of advice and encouragement.

The Wrap

I engaged a Malay masseuse to do full body and tummy slimming massages for a period of 7 days.

She uses traditional Indonesian herbs to apply on my tummy, and wraps it up really tightly with a home-made girdle like this:

Then, a 6 metre long cloth is wrapped over the first girdle to hold it in place and to keep my torso in shape.

Each day this is done, I am instructed to leave the wrap on for at least 8 hours, and to wear socks so that "wind" does not escape from my ankles and toes.

The herbs have a really strong smell, and I was worried that Bubbles would be affected by it when I breastfeed her. Thankfully she seems oblivious. I guess food comes first for her!

The massage and wrap has done wonders though. My tummy is back to its original size, and I only have about 1-2kg to lose to get back to pre-pregnancy weight. I just need to tackle some loose skin and stretchmarks to be fully back in shape.

Toning cream recommendations, anyone? :)