Archive for the “Breastfeeding” Category

we used to do this on aniq to amuse ourselves, now it’s her turn.

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(purely for recording purposes):
i guess i should note for posterity, like i did the last time with the elder one, that she’s weaned herself off b/f-ing at around 16 mths (11 of which were exclusive). a mean feat? i think so, seeing she wasn’t as much of a guzzler.

guess we both didn’t have the drive to keep going till she turned two years after all. which was just as well, coz the supply had gone dismal, and we’re both happy being independent off each other.

so yeah, no more baby hanging on mah titties! *throws confetti* (though there’s actually little for celebration, as i’ve learnt the last time, re: deflated boobs, slower metabolism, etc.)

OH WELL. bbbffffbbbbffffff.

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bottoms up

a year older, she’s used to holding her bottle while drinking milk. although she is still on breast milk, we are slowing weaning her off. she tends to look for her mom every night for her fix.

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this sight greeted me when the elevator door opened on thursday night when i reached home.

POTD-1-3

i was so excited, i ran tottered (wearing high heels and carrying shopping bags, mah) as quickly as i could to call aniq who was home with his daddy and sister.

he’d already seen them, but i hadn’t, so we all went out again to coo at the basket of furry felines.

“see, the baby kitten is drinking milk from the mummy cat,” i said.

“same! like mummy and baby auni!”, he pointed out.

“yes, same,” i beamed at him.

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see how both babies’ paws are positioned. uncanny. heh.

i was telling the husband that the mummy cat looked so… tired, from the demands of motherhood. there was another kitten snuggled up under her, so i could empathise how she must be feeling, with two little ones to care for and nourish.

oh, and i also wondered – where the heck is the daddy cat, eh? hmm.

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ok, a few more hours before my time is up. (macam kena recall masok jail, or worse, kena execution gitu eh? :p)

am still feeling queasy, lethargic, a little achy and chilly from the leftover viral flu which i’d contracted on friday out of the blue, like what bad timing huh?

and nevermind that i had over six months (technically, is apr 3 to nov 3 considered seven months?) to get ‘things’ done, it’s simply… not enough!!

i’ve been trying to come up with a list of ‘accomplishments’, kinda like your half-yearly work appraisal thing you know. erm, so far, i think, not so impressive.

A. Work achievement/progress

Project I: Baby A

i) Gave birth to Baby. (with least possible incurrence of additional hospitalisation costs.)
Progress: Completed

ii) Placed Baby to sleep in own room and through the night by eight weeks.
Progress: Completed

iii) Provided complete nourishment for Baby 0-6months, direct from source. (with no supplementary requirements.)
Progress: On-going

iv) Provided basic care to Baby. (including clothing, bathing, diapering, minyak-telon-ing, urang-aring-ing, etc.)
Progress: On-going

v) Provided stimulation to Baby to best of ability. (ie. verbal, visual, social, emotional.)
Progress: On-going

vi) Ensured proper immunisation of Baby and post-immunisation care. (6-in-1 package)
Progress: Completed

vii) Providing homemade first foods to Baby.
Progress: On-going

viii) Weaning Baby on to bottled teats.
Progress: On-going

ix) Captured Baby’s photographic moments and physical milestones.
Progress: On-going

x) ??

Project II: Elder Child A

i) Ensured smooth transition from single child to elder child and prevented any possibilities of sibling jealousy.
Progress: Completed

ii) Developing verbal skills, physical abilities, emotional well-being, and setting of ‘moral compass’.
Progress: On-going

iii) Successful toilet training to underpants in daytime, with increasingly lesser assistance.
Progress: Almost completed (night training still on-going)

iv) Ensured smooth transition from three-hourly daily playgroup to full-day centre-based care.
Progress: Completed

v) Weathered through various strains of ‘The Terrible Twos’ syndrome with minimum repercussions.
Progress: Good (behaviour still under monitor)

vi) ??

Project: Housework

Progress: ON-GOING
(*note: employed services of new helper, forecast looks promising.)

Project: Social & Love Life

Progress: Minimal. Positively dismal.

B. Training and Development Plans

Nil to date.

C. Career plans/ possible posting

i) Child-bearing career: Retired.

ii) Mothering career: On-going (end date: most likely on deathbed.)

iii) Wifely career: Endeavouring for a raise and better remuneration.

iv) Professional career: To be reviewed…

and in order to ensure that C.(iv) gets to see the light of day, i will need to log off this instance and literally wake up in the first light of day. (note to self: do not forget to bring the ‘espresso machine’ and all its parts, unlike the last first-day-of-work!)

wish me luck, people! (and good luck to you too, kiddos, ha ha.)

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last day of ‘freedom’, on the sg flyer

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===

mummy to aniq: aniq, daddy go to work, mummy go to work, aniq go to school, ok?
aniq: noo, aniq go to work also!
mummy: you want to go to work? where?
aniq: prison!

===

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Comments 26 Comments »

so i did finally find time to break out the new food processor, a hand-held one, which is so, erm, nice to hold, long and firm, with strong vibrations and all… err…

anyway, this baby food-making thing is kinda deja vu for me (the entry of oni’s demo still resides at aniq’s old blog), and like the last time, i’m holding out on the heinz/gerber-made purees because… well, i did it for the firstborn, so mommy has to be fair, right? and i still have a week left before relinquishing my sahm status, so i might as well do the homemade stuff like a good supermommy would (yeeaaah right, lol!). and, hmm, two babies on and i’m still a little suspicious of shelf-food (and beverage) for babies. (hey, you’ll never know what’s been melamine-infused! :p)

Puree time One sweet potato
steamed japanese sweet potato

(i know others create lovely entries on cooking, especially exotic food, but this is as far as hana goes with so-called ‘culinary adventures’, bah.

oh, and let me tell you, i did this in mum’s kitchen, and she took one look at me and went, “you hold the baby, let me do that instead” which made me fume and start nagging at how she ALWAYS did that, from when i was young till now that i’m an adult, and this was why i never learnt anything in the kitchen, bla bla bla, afterwhich she smirked, and continued holding the baby while i daintily scooped out the contents of my lovingly-made mush.)

Lunch is served

this time round, inspired by Fiona Miles’ ‘Fresh Milk: The Secret Life of Breasts’ (great read! it even has a breastmilk ice-cream recipe, if anyone’s interested… and stories on lactation p*rn*, ho ho), i did something which i unfortunately didn’t try the last time. and my favourite part of the whole process too, actually!

i bent over, and squirted milk into the bowl, straight from the source. mix, squirt, mix, squirt… until i got the consistency just right.

not gross, very nutritious, confirm no melamine. ha ha.

Food cube tray Babies are messy

so far, so good. she’s learnt to open her mouth wider instead of ‘sipping’ from the spoon. but mess is mess, for sure!

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Comments 15 Comments »

the truth is, being a sahm is great… if you have help.

without help, it can be quite a mountainous challenge, juggling household chores, your young children’s needs and well-being, and your own sanity.

with help, you get to eliminate the irksome and nitty gritty tasks of cleaning/sweeping/washing/ironing, and focus on the whole point of sahm-ing: your kids.

that’s how i see it anyway. of course, not everyone will agree! sahm-ing should come in a package, some say. what’s two kids, after all, right? our mothers and fore-mothers have done it all before, single-handedly, with half a dozen kids around their ankles. sahms should be supermoms! it’s a criteria, for heaven’s sake! and to those sahms who do manage without helpers and still have time to shop in town for the latest gucci garbs, well done!

but the fact is – i absolutely stink at housework. i grew up with a perfectionist mum who preferred doing things her way around the house and so, as a defense mechanism, i blacked out her naggings and got away with minimum lifting of my oh-so-delicate fingers. usually on the pretext that i was, err, reading or studying or something that required little movement on my part. nevermind that i was from an all-girls’ school for ten formative years of my life – i still suck at doing what is seemingly an inborn girl thing: domestic work. blame it on the lack of playing ‘masak-masak’ when i was young, i don’t know.

so, with the recent crisis re: the helper which prompted immediate repatriation, i have been stuck with a week’s worth of laundry waiting to be ironed, bathrooms waiting to be scrubbed, floors waiting to be mopped.

housework’s a bitch, can? LOL!

anyway, minor setback. i just have to, err, minimise our lives (less mess, less cleaning up), and wait for the dust to settle (which it has, literally, probably an inch thick!).

meanwhile, the bulk of the madness is getting everyone bathed and fed in the morning, send the elder one to his full-day c/care (at which he’s settling in effortlessly), afterwhich the little one gets full attention, until she has her next nap, which lasts all of one hour or less (hmph, so much for mademoiselle sleeping beauty – now not so sleepy anymore!), then feeble attempts at multi-tasking and running errands, before it’s five o’clock and the madness begins again, getting everyone bathed and fed for the evening.

SO FUN HOR! :D

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jemput makan

the latest thing added to the daily schedule. yes, as you can see, i’ve had time to drop by the library for some, er, refresher. haven’t had time to break out the new food processor to try out the supposedly easy-peasy job of making baby purees, though. broke out in an allergic rash instead the day after the purchase, which got me a jab of promethazine, which made me totally conked out for the next 24 hours or so. (gawd have i mentioned i HATE drugs!!) maybe the thought of me actually doing something with a food processor caused the allergic reaction, ha ha.

Auni

so, her menu has thus far been stuck with jemput-jemput-smelling rice cereal with b/milk and bananas. (and which, while recovering from that lethal dose of promethazine, i ate some banana pancakes mum made – without b/milk, of course – and ended up the whole day doubled over with indigestion. i can’t eat bananas, dammit, when will i ever learn?!)

and speaking of b/milk, that’s the other thing i’ve been busy with. stocking up. :S


DIY tahui!

time check, 04:45am. orang gila ajer masih belum tidur eh.

gonna go pump my jemput-jemput now.

cheers!

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Comments 33 Comments »

aww, don’t be sad for losing the match… :p

Red Devil's Food Cake
Red Devil’s Food Cake

+++

a quick update on what’s been happening on planet hana… well, nothing much, really. other than that great roadtrip and being with the kids almost 24/7.

today, while driving in the car with aniq, i realised that the most conversation i have every day is with him, and he’s practically my boyfriend (in fact, i do ask him everyday if he’s my boyfriend, and he’ll say yes, and put my arm around my neck and smother me with smelly wet kisses. and that’s just how exciting my life is these days – turning my firstborn into a mummy’s boy.)

(on a side note, i met his proclaimed “best friend” in school last week, whose name is naima, a round-faced and round-eyed girl of chinese-malay descent. so, so cute.)

oh, and to add to the insanity, i *did* seek for that extension to continue being with the little ones – for one more month (of which i’m subjecting myself to being sadistically broke).

i figure, if i went back right after hari raya, i’d be a sad miserable hag during the days leading up to the festivities and on hari raya itself. and furthermore, after a month of fasting, my body would probably need to adjust where milk production is concerned.

along with my stock of breastmilk in the freezer, is my now-sluggish brain and my heavy heart… both of which need a little more time to thaw out.

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Comments 17 Comments »

with the World Breastfeeding Week around the corner once again, i realise that this time, i don’t have much else to say about The BF Issue like i did the last time. i guess because everything that can be said, i’ve said before.

things on the ‘udder’ front have been pretty much on auto-mode and a breeze, like second nature, that i’m barely reflective, or conscious, about it anymore. furthermore, the little one doesn’t seem to require as much nursing as her brother did when he was a baby. she hardly even asks for it, actually, which should make first-time bf-ing mums worried, but a second-time bf-ing mum (who is, like me, a little lazy) quite relieved.

ok, so i *think* she hasn’t been growing as chubby as her brother did in the first few months. the last we sneakily weighed her at the hospital during aniq’s follow-up, she tipped the scale at a rather ‘dainty’ 6.4kg. which is what… 1kg a month? is that ok? i don’t know. another thing about second-time mums (who are a little lazy) is that, they don’t bother looking at growth charts anymore.

and another thing that i’ve been procrastinating (due to said laziness), is the pumping. have been meaning to buy a proper pump to finally call my own (seeing how the previous pumps were hand-me-downs), with all the gift vouchers i’ve saved up (breastfeeding is, after all, about being prudent, no?), but even that has not been put into action. and note to self: please buy a few bottles for her too. that’s another thing i’ve been procrastinating, practising her to go on the bottle. simply because mommy’s boobies don’t need to be washed, scrubbed and boiled after every feed (ie. she’s too lazy to do the whole sterilising routine).

poor excuse, i know. i’m just trying to, erm, minimise my life, you see. and also for the fact that, i’m still contemplating on doing this… sahm thing a little longer. and no, this one is not due to laziness. i’m growing into a new routine with the kids and i realise that i REALLY like being The Big Boss to them. heck with the ‘let’s-bring-women-back-to-the-workforce’ thing. this IS work, dammit. a grossly-underpaid and under-recognised one. grrrrrr.

so, aaanyway, back to the World Breastfeeding Week. wasn’t that the point of this entry? aah…

as with the previous years, there will be a mass synchronised breastfeeding session.

Venue : National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre (NVPC) , The Giving Place,
6 Eu Tong Sen Street, #04-88 The Central, Singapore 059817
Located @ The Central, a shopping mall directly above Clarke Quay MRT

Date: 16th Aug 2008 (Sat), 2pm

there, i’ve done my part in advocating tek-milk for this year. will you join me? come on, melayu boleh! save the earth! save your children! and most importantly, save your money! :d

besides, clarke quay on a saturday sounds as happening as it can get to this mak-bawah-tempurung.

signing off,
The Once Self-Proclaimed Tit-Nazi who’s not so sure if she’s even doing it right anymore, with soggy + sagging boobs to boot.

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Comments 18 Comments »

visits to the docs are highlights for those in confinement, eh? :p

Auni all slung out

(boring stuff ahead, but they’re more for my own records. really.)

to summarise, doc checked my stitch (apparently, i only had one, like the last time – how elastic my Netherlands are, i simply cannot fathom) and declared it gone *poof*. the thing about stitches, the peak of its sting is felt some time around the fourth or fifth day, when the thread is drying up. couple that with a ‘bengkung’ wrapped tight around you, sitting down gives you the ultimate OOMPH, i tell ya. (didn’t i mention i’m a masochist?)

there was some discussion on family planning, which i’m sure you’re NOT interested in, ha ha. (and if you ARE – it’s gonna be the needle, baybeh. either that, or cut off those tubes!… ok, kidding.)

another visit due in two months time for a pap smear.

and yes, 7kg down, 3 more to go.

moving on… :p

next was another trip to the paedi, where more questions on her pees, poops and feeds were answered. he assured that the baby’s jaundice is almost gone, and will clear up by itself in due time, so no need for another blood test. hurrah!

i voiced my concern to him about how she sleeps too well at night, and that i even wake her up to feed (well, more to relieve my bursting-to-the-brim ‘udders’, really!). and get this – he said to LET her sleep! a wild idea indeed! apparently, i should count myself lucky that she lets me sleep where others have sleepless nights, and that i shouldn’t change her momentum – just feed her more in the day. hokaaay… i just thought, you know, babies *need* to be fed regularly every few hours. but this girl, hmm… she’s one of those day-feeders, i guess. which is good news for me and the VERY LUCKY husband, but bad news for me boobies! :D

ok, so i guess here’s where i start talking about my revived breastfeeding career.

(i can imagine all the anti-tit-nazis starting to roll their eyes at this point, ha ha.)

ahh. as the wise old saying goes – “the path to total breastfeeding is never easy”. (ok, it isn’t a wise old saying, i just made that up.)

the two days at the hospital after the delivery, i’d set my expectations lower – yes, you read me right, lower. i knew that my supply wasn’t going to be magically abundant. so i did what i did the last time, but without the guilt this time round – got her to suckle for as long as i could, and when i really needed to rest, i allowed the nurses to give her some formula. i knew she wouldn’t take much anyway, because she’d be tired by then from suckling me, and at one to two days old, she wouldn’t be that hungry.

and when we came home on the third day, the milk came in, right on time. hello, boobs!

it’s… kinda like driving a manual car – you sorta remember, but you need a refresher, you know? i admit that the first week is never easy for any mothers attempting breastfeeding – whether you’ve done it before or not!

engorgement? of course. sore nipples? yep. blisters? sure.

but i had superb support and help from the masseuse. she practically trained the baby to open her mouth “big big!” and taught me to pop that “big big” mouth – NGAP! – onto where it’s supposed to. (ok, she actually suggested that i video auni do the “open big big!” trick and put it up so other mums can do the same with their babies too – maybe i should get funding from the health ministry for a public awareness campaign? hmm. :p)

that sorted, she went on to massage the engorgement away – and it did, instantly. hurts like hell, coz here you have two rocks on your chest, and they get kneaded and squeezed, and you’re squeaking and squawking away, coz the rocks are very sensitive, can? but nevermind, masochist says, “pain is in the mind”…

the blisters, well, once you got the latch right, those things dry up in no time, with all that sucking. mine came off by itself within a week.

and after that one week teething period, so to speak, we’re on cruise control. (what is up with this car analogy, hana??)

but i must disclaim that i only speak for myself, coz i know this whole “BF” issue is like treading on glass. every mum, and every baby, is different!

i had an enlightenment during my two-day stay at ‘hotel eastshore’ when auni had jaundice. i was sharing the room with a mother who’d just given birth to a baby boy just five days before. he was warded for jaundice too, being born a few weeks earlier than his due date, with a cord around his neck.

the room being so confined, i couldn’t help but overhear a lactationist giving her advice and trying to show her how to do the football hold. later on, i could tell she was having a hard time whenever she tried to feed the baby, so i walked past and asked if she needed help, coz her baby was screaming his head off while she was helplessly trying to get him to latch (and coz i’m freaking kepo, i know). she said yes, so i tried the tickle-the-chin-and-”open big big!”-and-POP-mouth-onto-areola thing with the baby.

but i realise that her nipples were short, and the baby’s mouth was small, and she wasn’t comfortable holding the baby, and he was hungry and impatient, and… well, it IS hard, isn’t it?? :S

so yeah, i felt her frustration.

and i thank my lucky stars to have nubs just right for my babies with their big big mouths.

to soon-to-be mums, i wish you all the best if you intend to set on The BF Path. remember to, err, pull those nippies if you think they’re too stubby! (they’re pretty stretchy you know. or you can try nipple pullers, i hear they work.)

and if you need that “open big big!” video… i get auni to demo on izad, ok? :p

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Comments 61 Comments »

hey, do we still have hooters in singapore…? :p

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ouhh, if you haven’t watched Juno, you MUST. wait, is it out in the theatres yet? coz izad d/l it to his PSP from, hmm… somewhere, plugged it to the tv, and insisted i watch it with him.

gladly enough, i did. killer script and soundtrack! quirky and indie and smart – a winning combination.

and i think ellen page is the next It girl.

speaking of teenage pregnancies, we were discussing how easy it is for sixteen-year-olds to get pregnant, and BE pregnant. like, their bodies are meant to go through the whole childbearing process effortlessly.

i mean, all those stories we hear in our local news about secretly getting through nine months hiding their bellies underneath their school uniforms and giving birth to babies in toilets – a thirty-year-old can’t get away with that, surely! (lemme go find my old tkg uniform and see if i can fit in it now, ok?) how do they do that, get away with nary a waddle, with not even a whiff of suspicion from their parents or teachers, and then give birth alone in a toilet, flush it down, get up and go. free delivery, so to speak.

ok. i think that’s depressing enough.

but go watch the show! it’s not depressing at all. in fact, it’s all vair heartwarming (nevermind the moral implications). and vair cool (once again, nevermind that it would probably inspire even more sixteen-year-olds to get knocked up).

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Comments 27 Comments »

thanks to the ‘tit nazi’ (ha ha) for her recent reminder of this topic, coz i finally got round to finding these posters and brochures, which shall be errm, kept as souvenirs and wisely used in future… whenever THAT is. ;)

tsk, SO propagandistic hor. *chuckles*

just to get me a little nostalgic once in a while. (especially when i see the freaking price of milk on the shelves these days. sigh.)

for more information the ‘tit nazi’ would be proud of, go to http://www.abas.org.sg.

nice and pink, just for the ladies. (ps: check out the video clips available! yes yes, totally un-p/o/r/n ones with real spurting bits, hehe. vair useful stuff, especially for new mums, e.g. on compression. man, i like this doctor, we really should have more of his kind around.)

this has been a public service announcement.

**********

ok, just because i *happened* to be surfing, i found a survey done in s’pore some years ago by HPB. excerpts i found interesting:

Muslim mothers were 6.7 times more likely to breastfeed their babies at 2 months compared to Buddhist/Taoist mothers. This might be related to Islam’s favourable stance towards breastfeeding—for example, the Quran (Chapter 2, Verse 233) decrees that ‘mothers shall give suck to their offspring for two whole years’ (Counsilman and Viegas, 1985). Christian mothers were also more likely to breastfeed their babies longer compared to Buddhist/Taoist mothers.

It is noteworthy that while the model for predicting continued breastfeeding at 2 months shows that Muslim mothers were more likely to breastfeed their babies compared to Buddhist/Taoist mothers, Malay mothers were less likely to breastfeed their babies compared to Chinese mothers. This apparent contradiction could be explained by the differing influences of ethnicity and religion on breastfeeding among different subgroups of respondents. Among the Malay mothers, all were Muslims—their ethnic and religious identities are thus closely intertwined. Among the Chinese mothers, their religious affiliations were more diverse—about half were Buddhist/Taoists, about a quarter were Christians, and another quarter had no religion. In addition, the shift towards Christianity in Singapore is most pronounced among the better educated Chinese (Singapore Department of Statistics, 2000), and better educated mothers tend to breastfeed their babies longer.

The survey found that 54.5% of the mothers did not receive advice on breastfeeding from health professionals during their pregnancy. However, this did not have a negative impact on breastfeeding duration in the current study. On the contrary, women who did not receive advice on breastfeeding from health professionals during pregnancy were more likely to breastfeed for a longer duration. Among the women in the survey who had not received advice on breastfeeding, the three mostly commonly cited sources of information were family members, friends and books. This suggests that family support and maternal knowledge are important. Not discounting the important role of health professionals in promoting breastfeeding, it might still be useful to provide women with credible information on breastfeeding as soon as possible as studies have shown that infant feeding decisions are made prior to delivery and such decision would influence the initiation and duration of breastfeeding

In summary, the results of this study show higher breastfeeding prevalence rates compared to past studies in Singapore. Despite this, exclusive breastfeeding is still not a common practice.

- full article here.

so in short:

1) muslim mums do better than buddhist/taoist mums, but malay mums don’t do as well as chinese mums, because the latter include christians who are *generally* better educated and informed. hmm, we really gotta step up, huh? melayu… boleh? :S

2) health professionals, and i’m guessing nurses and doctors here, are not necessarily the best people to turn to, but family members, friends and books (or rather, the world wide web!). so much for asking the ‘experts’, ha ha.

3) let’s hope the statistics rise (and keep rising) in the next few years.

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Comments 9 Comments »

i was tickled when i got hold of this last week, and i think i’ve just about gotten over it. hehe.

it doesn’t look like much to you veteran parents whose children have probably brought home a hundred of such things home, but it’s one of those milestones which i never expected, it kinda sneaks up on you like a pleasant surprise and leaves a grin on your face despite yourself.

i mean, my toddler, who not so long ago was a tiny little bundle whose chief concerns were being fed and dry, now being sent home his artwork (or whatever small scribbly part that was his own doing anyway!) AND a progress report – that’s just… SURREAL, to say the least.

i guess there’s also this sense of wonder that he can do all that – and who knows what else – in the hours we’re apart, being his own separate person, creating his own experiences, that i don’t have the luxury to share with or witness. (i’m still quite amused by the ‘skinnamarinky-dinky-dink-i-love-you’ thing, wuahuahaa. i admit, i is so the jakun, i am, i’m sorry.)

i showed his handiwork to him and asked what he did, and he zigzaged the air vigorously to indicate he’d coloured it, all the while trying to earnestly explain to me in his own ‘foreign language’.

and i get that. you know how only mothers can incredulously ‘translate’ and make sense of their children’s gibberish and seemingly random actions to others?

well, that’s me now.

most of the times, anyway.

:D

ps: ouh, for all those enthusiasts and militants out there, recently recruited or otherwise, here’s the latest attempt at beating the record for simultaneous b/feeding. hope the turnout’s better this time round… ;)

world breastfeeding week 2007

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Comments 24 Comments »

wahlao eh.

i was trying to google on how to become a certified lactation consultant (yet another one of my whimsical angan-angan ambitions) when i clicked on http://www.family.sg/PREGNANCY and…

GAH!!

there greeted my eyes, my once-upon-a-time about-to-explode tummy! anjat gegerl.

hmm, is that a sign or something…? *chuckles*

anyway, continuing my search, there IS an int’l board of lactation consultant which does certification. you’d have to go through a course and then an exam (!) which comprises of 200 multiple choice questions. you’re also required to have a health professional background, but “personal breastfeeding experience, wonderful as it is, does not meet this requirement”.

darn. there goes my chance to be an official Tek-nician or Tek-nical troubleshooter.

haiyah. moving on.

my organisation emails us summaries of articles from various sources on a regular basis, and i sent one of interest to the Bapaknye.

What kids get from with dads: ‘Father functions’ have lasting impact; no need for Mr. Mom

Growing research shows that fathers can have a distinct impact on children beyond that of mothers even though they often spend less time with their children. Although both mothers and fathers can stimulate children through the same psychological processes, mothers can only do so much; fathers have an additional impact because they tend to behave differently with children.

Studies show that:

- Fathers tend to engage kids in more rough-and-tumble play. This fosters their children’s curiosity and teaches their children to regulate emotion and enjoy surprises.
- There is a link between fathers’ warm, stimulating play with their 2-year-olds and better language and cognitive skills in the children a year later, independent of mothers’ behavior. The effect endures into adolescence.
- Fathers who play with toddlers in stimulating and encouraging ways tend to have children with healthier relationships at age 16, surpassing mothers’ effect.
- Fathers tend to shape language development as they typically do not talk down to their children as much as mothers, using larger words. There is a link between fathers who used varied vocabulary with their 2-year-olds, and more advanced speech at age 3, even though the fathers spoke less often to the children.
- Fathering may reduce teen delinquency. Fathers tend to handle misbehavior differently from mothers, stressing real-world consequences.

and this part of the article tickled me: “It was talkative dads who gave the kids an edge.” hehe.

i guess it’s true that mums generally communicate with their kids more (in other words, ‘nag’), while dads are more verbally economical by virtue of being, well, males (unless of course, you’re a lawyer or a national debater or a taxi driver).

having had a father who was not very ‘involved’ or communicative, i’m glad that our generation of daddies has evolved and are taking a more active part in ‘fathering’.

meanwhile, the following is an example of the kind of, erm, lessons the Bapaknye has been imparting to the little one:

“aniq! superman!” —> *stretches arm outwards* —> little one stretches arm outwards

“batman!” —> *makes circular shape with index finger and thumb over eyes* —> little one pinches index finger and thumb over his eyes to the best of his (limited) abilities

“ultraman!” —> *makes a cross with two arms* —> little one gets mixed up with superman

“spiderman!” —> *makes squeezing motion with hands* —> at which point Maknye corrects Bapaknye on his gross misrepresentation of spiderman with proper wrist-flicking action —> little one gives up in confusion

“mickey mouse!” —> *wriggles fingers over head* —> at which point Maknye also gives up —> the little one, finding this doable, wriggles fingers over his head

etc.

i don’t know how much of an ‘edge’ the Bapaknye is giving him, but at least he’d know his comic book heroes, and that, surely, is important to know in the real world. :p

mickey man!
mickey man!

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so i picked up the paper some time ago and found something which piqued my interest, which then led me to more interesting stuff.

angelina jolie was quoted as saying:

“Someone saying to me that I’m thin is not a compliment. I’ve always been lean and this year I lost my mom and I’ve gone through a lot. I have four kids and I finished breastfeeding – it’s been hard to get my nutrition back on track. Instead of people saying I look like a person dealing with something emotionally, they assume it’s because I want to fit into skinny jeans.”

so i tried to google for a photo of her – no, not being skinny – but breastfeeding.

there was one, but detractors have claimed that it’s fake. oh well.

i was telling izad that the tummy flabs are coming fast and furious, and he tried to psycho me into jogging with him, but i didn’t have any running shoeees, i lamented. i asked if i could take pills instead, but he wasn’t too keen about giving me half his liver, so that’s out of the question. the last resort – i’ll just need to get pregnant again. then the fat is justified, and when i b/feed again, i’ll be skinny again! yes!

anyway, back to my googling, which led me to find other celebs who b/fed. and WOW! there’s like, a whole website dedicated to spotting celebs who are preggers, who’ve given birth, etc. and naturally, quotable quotes from stars who b/fed.

http://www.celebrity-babies.com/breastfeeding/index.html

yeah, i’m always happy reading about people b/feeding, STILL. macam fetish liddat. and celebrities – they have the power to inspire mere mortals, so it’s great that that they speak on the issue in public.

oh, and i also found this international breast milk project – more wow! it’s a programme for volunteers to donate breast milk to the babies in africa orphaned by HIV. very noble cause. imagine, you can be the ‘ibu susuan’ (milk mother) of many african babies, no need to adopt them ala angelina or madonna!

bftee1 bftee2

and today’s straits times, there’s a front page report on filipino mothers staging a protest against milk powder companies, by baring their painted breasts to the media. goes to show that you DON’T need to be hollywood celebrities to get the message across, after all. :)

“The companies making baby-milk formula, led by Nestle, whose founder invented the product 137 years ago, and a clutch of American health-care giants, have long drawn fire for hard selling an expensive and – if mixed with unclean water – potentially lethal product in the developing world. Breastfeeding campaigners say that has gulled generations of mothers in poor countries into believing infant formula is superior to their milk.”

i suppose their agenda is slightly different, in that it really affects the infant mortality in the country. according to Unicef, 16,000 infants die a year in the Philippines from incorrect feeding practices, including the use of formula mixed with contaminated water. and more and more poor, low-income people there have fallen prey to the advertising message that infants raised on formula will grow up to do well in school, and thus find good jobs. they also regard b/feeding as “old-fashioned, low-class and backward”. how sad. :(

the filipinos are surely one of the strongest advocates in b/feeding. i was hosting a group of filipino officials just last month, and during our discussion on infant care centre facilities, one of them was really impressed and happy when i told them that it’s a requirement to have a separate fridge for storing b/milk. they were even more impressed when i told them that many working mothers here are encouraged to express b/milk with the availability of nursing room facilities.

yeah, yeah. here i go again, huh, being all militantist? tsk.

now, somebody hand me some paint… *unbuttons shirt*

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Comments 26 Comments »

“di mana dia,
anak kambing saya?
anak kambing saya,
yang namanya aniq!”

… everybody now! :D

i started the ‘kid’ (ha ha) on goat’s milk after some researching (and soul-searching), and whaddaya know – he likey!

so much so that the two litres of hay’s goat’s milk delivered at the doorstep on the dawn of thursday morning was all gone in 60 seconds. ok lah, ‘kid’ding (ha ha), by saturday morning, actually.

since that went down well (literally), we scouted around mustafa centre for a powdered version. according to my colleague and fellow avid b/feeding mum who weaned off both her healthy kids on goat’s milk, you can get it for two dollars cheaper there than at ntuc.

and whaddaya know – he likes it very muchly too!

so the conclusion is: my anak kambing is a greedy little goat who will wallop anything that’s given to him.

or, it actually tastes good, contrary to popular belief.

i tried taking a whiff of the goat’s milk, and it was surprisingly quite… pleasant. no, err, goaty smell (not that i know what goats smell like, but i’m assuming it’s akin to someone who hadn’t bathed in a month), just a normal fresh-milk smell.

and for the powdered version, no goaty smell there either; it’s pretty well-masked by a nice vanilla smell.

after five months of plying cow’s formula on the little one, i can’t help but find the smell and taste rather… metallic, and unpleasant. my sensitive nose is quite turned off by it, especially when discarding unconsumed milk from the bottle. it smells… pukey. maybe it’s just me, but i simply don’t like the smell of formula. (yes, i’ve tried a couple of them). :S

i really can’t be too sure of the long-term benefits of goat’s milk, and i’m certainly not gonna declare that it’s better than cow’s milk (like i did, and always will, with b/milk) – i is no scientist after all. just a (cerewet) mom going with her gut feel.

well, a little googling helped too…

- goat milk is a far better emulsion than cow’s milk;
- the oil globules of goat milk are one-fifth the size of cow’s milk;
- the reaction of goat milk is alkaline (the same as mother’s milk), whereas cow milk gives an acid reaction;
- the curd in goat milk is small and flocculent, hence easily digested and assimilated, while cow milk has large dense curd that is largely indigestible and causes an excess of catarrh and constipation;
- the goat is a browser fond of herbs and barks (as opposed to a cow, which is a grazer), and thus its milk is high in silicon—silicon is the enemy of tuberculosis, which is never found among goats or goat milk but flourishes among cows;
- goat milk is naturally homogenized, but in our attempt to duplicate this process in cow milk something went wrong;
- and, finally, The Journal of the American Medical Association, the official organization of 100,000 physicians in the U.S., under the heading “Dietetics and Hygiene??? says: “The goat is the healthiest domestic animal known. Goat milk is superior in every way to cow’s milk. Goat milk is the ideal food for babies, convalescents and invalids, especially those with weakened digestive powers. Goat milk is the most healthful and complete food known.”
- from ‘the national association for child development’

there seems to be a lot of controversy surrounding cows versus goats, and it probably has little bearing to many mothers who are perfectly comfortable with their current choice of formula (if they are no longer b/feeding).

maybe i subconsciously resent the formula companies for marketing their products so effectively and successfully, and for taking over my milk-producing duty, that i kinda wanna rebel against them. macam personal vendetta liddat. and since the goat is the underdog (like b/feeding seems to be, sigh), i’m inclined to give them the support. (great, it’s not enough that human’s milk has been politicised, even the different animals’ milk has joined the fray!)

The nutritional value of goat milk has been acknowledged by many cultures for centuries. However, the cow milk industry around the world has developed in a more sophisticated manner in terms of production, marketing and research compared with the goat milk industry. The key benefit which the cow milk industry enjoys is that cow milk can be produced more economically than goat milk, largely due to the greater productivity of the cow. However, the economic advantages do not necessarily mean that cow milk is more suitable for human consumption. In fact, many consider that goat milk is closer to human milk.
- from Dairy Goat Co-op (NZ)

anyway, it’s a parental right for a first-time mum to experiment on her first child, isn’t it? hee. i’ll keep him on this for a while, and see if his very mild eczema (itchy and scratchy joints) and phlegm will go away for good. so far, the runny nose has stopped. then again, could be the antibiotics and snuffle babe vapour rub i’ve been slathering on his feet at night doing their tricks.

now, if only they sold human b/milk in the market…

(THEN i’d happily quit my job and ‘milk’ myself full-time – for $$$, yeay!)

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Comments 21 Comments »

mum told me how the boy was watching hi-5 the other day and suddenly went up to the tv screen and pointed at one of the girls wearing a low spaghetti strap with, i suppose, a fair amount of cleavage revealed. and he went “tehteh”… which cracked mum up.

and we were sitting around that evening reading magazines and newspapers when something caught his eyes.

he stared intently at umie aida’s ample, in-yer-face erm, assets which were prominently featured on the cover of manja (i don’t wonder if the readership of pakciks increased twofold with this issue)… and mum asked, “tengok tetek? mana tetek?” to which, my TekBoy promptly pointed at the said erm, assets.

right on da money, baybeh. (TAPI, mak harap kau dah besar JANGAN ogle macam gitu sudah eh! HEP!)

after a while, he kinda lunged at me with a short whine, and i so skillfully deflected his attention towards another magazine with no offensive mammaries on the front page.

:D

sometimes my mum still goes “kasi lah dia tetek, dia nak ngempeng aje, kesian…” and i’d grit my teeth and tell her, well duh, don’t keep going on reminding him then. coz he does understand what we’re talking about, that boy.

and you know, she sounds EXACTLY like her own mother, believe it or not, and i don’t think she’s even aware of it. see, my lovable but forgetful grandma, she’d always go “kesian, dia nak tetek, kasi lah dia…” EVERY SINGLE TIME the little one lets out a mere squeak when he was a baby. and i’d have to tell her, “dahhh nek, BARUUUU kasi tadi”. and she’d repeat this line again and again throughout our stay, hehehhee. it’s quite funny and i didn’t mind her, coz she does that anyway, repeats the same questions and remarks to everyone, due to her short-term memory.

so anyway, i kinda miss it now, like i guess he does occassionally… but you gotta stick to your decisions and move on.

and that’s that. :)

ps: don’t worry, we also make sure he knows other more proper body parts, eg. nose, ears, toes, belly button, etc… hehe.

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