Archive for February, 2011

lifesaver

February 24, 2011

Argh, should have bought this earlier. Baby loves it and is willing to sit in it for some time without me carrying her all the time. Helps with her sitting too. Heh. Tried this at ML’s place (think LA is trying to claim her seat back) and baby’s grandparents went straight to Ikea to get the chair. Being doting grandparents, they didn’t just get the chair, they bought the padding and a toy farmhouse with extra animals. I’ll leave the storytelling to the grandparents since I suck at it. Haha.

Outsourcing my job to Great Great Granny. Hah.

Other items tried at ML’s place. The LG playmat which I intend to buy and the bumbo seat which I wouldn’t be buying coz baby is too old for it. 

missing france_Provence Roadtrip 3

February 23, 2011

Our B&B L’Aubergine Rouge in Arles has only 2 rooms with an interesting owner Eric. He was a professional cook who loves india and spends his winter months there. A free spirit whose mantra is to have the freedom to leave whenever and do as he wish. Brave. This was a stark contrast to the final B&B we stayed in, where the owner is burdened by his chateau and struggling to make ends meet.

We arrived in Arles on a sunday so most shops are closed. But Arles is a really old place with the UNESCO Roman Arena. The deserted streets and grey skies added a special haunting touch to the place. Although Van Gogh had loved the color of the sunlight in Arles. Yes. This was the place where Vincent Van Gogh produced some of his best works in the year he was there (visited the cafe that he painted!), before he was turned away by the residents. They thought he was crazy.

After Arles, we took a drive further south to Camargue where we saw wild horses and pink flamingoes in the lakes. I never knew they grew rice too! It was a nice change of scenery after all the cities that we had been to.

We ate in a town near Camargue. Couldn’t remember what they were (or the restaurant name, whoops) but they tasted fantastic. Eric from the B&B recommended it. It was delicious!

After the meal, it was a long way back north to Fontainebleau. Instead of doing 7 hours of driving, we decided to stop for a night in this chateau near Buxy (will try to recall the name) which we found off Alastair Sawdays.

The lovely owner recommended a michelin star restaurant Aux Annees Vins and the food was amazing (another blog post). We had asked for recommendations and the owner told us he would make dinner arrangements so we had no idea a delicious dinner was lined up.

The B&B was interesting. We stayed in a huge pigeon house. The holes used to house pigeons. In the past, royal families owned them to fertilize the soil. Eco friendly indeed. Since it is not relevant these days, they converted it into a B&B to raise money for conservation of the vast chateau and its grounds. The owner lamented that it had belonged to their family for generations and it was his duty to keep it going. He showed us a chart of his family tree too! Due to the financial crisis in 2009, the government had stopped funding conservation projects and they are left on their own. It sure is a huge burden. Also, they purchase up to 600 bottles of wine each year. 300 to keep and the other 300 to drink. The 300 kept would be passed down to the next generation. Wow.

The stay at the B&B and the delicious meal was indeed a nice end to our Provence Roadtrip.

routine of a 6 mth old baby

February 21, 2011

She has been keeping to this routine since 4 mths. Of course she doesn’t stick to it strictly since she would wake earlier or later for her naps. But one thing is for sure. She can only stay awake for 2.5hrs and will start to doze off or get cranky if she doesn’t get her naps.

0700am Baby wakes up and plays/talks in her cot.

0730am Baby starts to ‘ask’ for her milk feed (180ml).

0830am Baby has a 40mins morning nap. That’s when I feed myself and read the papers.

0915am Baby wakes up and plays on her own before I whoop her off to the market to get groceries and lunch.

1030am Baby comes home and plays on her own or with great great granny/uncle/daddy whilst I prepare her milk and solid foods.

1115am Baby eats her semi solids and drinks her milk (180ml) after.

1145am Baby usually gets drowsy by 1130am and knocks off by 12pm. Her noon nap is inconsistent ranging from 1-1.5hrs. On rare occasions, she can go up to 2hrs. I use this time to have lunch, prepare dinner and relax.

0100pm Baby wakes and I let her play on her own before joining her. This would be a good time to bring her out too.

0300pm Baby starts to get hungry and I feed her 180ml of milk.

0330pm Baby gets drowsy and takes a 40minute nap. Another break for me!

0430pm Baby wants to play.

0545pm Baby loves going to the park and we watch the children play. I let her sit on the swing if it is unoccupied.

0615pm Bath Time!

0630pm Baby starts to get hungry and I feed her 180ml of milk.

0730pm Baby goes to bed and will usually knock off by 8pm. Sometimes I’m a horrid mother and brings her out for dinner. She’ll get all excited but we usually get home by 9.30pm and a bottle of milk would knock her out. Hah.

She takes a longer time to feed because she was throwing up when she was smaller so I prefer that she rest a little after half a milk feed, by walking her around before continuing with the rest of her milk.

carrots fail

February 21, 2011

She hates her carrots. Only upon further reading (love this book) and speaking to friends that I realise carrots should be introduced after 8 months. Whoops. I use the Beaba Babycook and Annabel Karmel’s freeze cube trays which were a breeze to use. Just pop them out and defrost in bowl.

Little dumpling loves bananas and sweet potato. It was the banana that got her opening her mouth again. She saw her grandma eating one and wanted to grab it. Her daddy allowed her to taste some and she was hooked. I quickly prepared a portion of mashed banana mixed with formula and she grabbed the spoon off my hand! Note that it is easier to scrape the banana first instead of cutting a chunk and attempting to mash the chunk with a spoon.

Bought the sweet potatoes from NTUC Finest this morning. The sweet potatoes are from Japan and comes in a bag. It costs more (S$5.90) but I like it because the potatoes are really small so I won’t have to finish the left over sweet potato.

Up next, avocadoes and green peas. Excited!!!


little dumpling @ 6.5mths

February 21, 2011

My little dumpling has come a long way since the last time I blogged in November @ 5 mths. She loves her bathtime now and expects her rubbery squirt friends (crab, octopus, pelican, dolphin, ducks & turtle) to join her each time. Place only the ducks in the tub and she continues looking up at the shelf and wonders why the others are still sitting there.

Physical Development. Little dumpling had grown into a fierce little grabber (since 4 mths old). Quick as lightning, she pulls anything that interests her, off and into her little mouth (she loves angbaos). Poor Sophie the Giraffe is one victim. Constantly contorted and mutilated by her chewing. The scene is pretty savage. Last week, she attempted to kick the passenger on the left and pull a lady’s patterned shirt on my right during our train ride home. I had to restrain her!

She could do big push ups by now and rotates like a turtle stuck on its back. She rolled back at 5.5 months and gaining distance this way. Instead of crawling forward, she ends up pushing herself backward instead. She can sit unsupported for a few minutes and insists on standing in her bathtub sometimes. She also giggles a lot when her daddy lifts her high up in the air and swing her round and round. Sweet.

Language Development. She doesn’t babble very much except when left on her own. I hope she loves her languages in future.

Weaning. We started her on semi solids 2 weeks ago. Initially, she took to Healthy Times Brown Rice Cereal and downed 2 tablespoons of it. But before we could pat ourselves on the back to congratulate ourselves, she concluded a week later that milk remains her favourite food. She clamped her mouth shut whenever we raise the spoon to her mouth. Forcing it down only made her vomit her food (& milk with it) and that was quite a sight to watch.

Challenges Challenges.

Well, my mistake actually. Pureed carrots (thinned with milk) was introduced without mixing it with rice cereal. Yep. You get it now. Even I puke at the thought of eating pureed carrots. Ever since that first mouthful and subsequent puke, she eyes every spoon (with or without carrots) suspiciously and refused to open her mouth. No amount of cajoling, funny faces and thousand ‘so delicious’ or ‘yummmies’ (we ate it in front of her) would make her yield. Attempts to feed her some more would result in a meltdown.

Hence we decided to feed her carrots through the bottle. We thought we could trick her. Alas. We had underestimated the power of babies. If you think they don’t know a thing. Think again. We poured the pureed carrots from the bowl into a milk bottle and diluted it with milk. All done in full view of baby. BIG MISTAKE. I seriously thought she wouldn’t know. She eyed the bottle and refused to open her mouth. She tried to squirm her way out too. Only when I offered the other bottle (milk without carrot) that she willingly drank it all up. Boy was she hungry! I am taking a break this week and hopefully she forgets her trauma and start taking her cereals again. Sigh.

Awareness. I couldn’t remember when she became more people/environment sensitive but she seemed more discerning at 4-5mths. She stared hard at the person carrying her and looked to me for validation. These days, she wants me to carry her by stretching out her arms and arching forward. Once, she got so upset with me after I left her on the bed when she actually wanted to be carried. She indicated her displeasure by stretching out to her grandma and refusing to look at me or carry after! Gosh.

Sleep. Since 5mths, she had been sleeping from 8pm to 7am in the morning with a dream feed at 11pm. We intend to wean her off the dream feed before she gets really big and I wouldn’t be able to lift her off her bed. 8-11pm is a vulnerable period sometimes. She would cry out in the middle of her sleep and we’ll have to pat her a little to get her back to sleep.

Temperament. She is usually happy and smiles alot unless she is hungry or too tired *my fault actually*.  My daily task is to anticipate her signs more accurately so she doesn’t get into a meltdown!