Friday, February 23, 2018

8 Month Old Amani

january passed by real fast because of the start of the school year and then february flew by and in a blink of an eye, my little amani safiyaa is a big 8 months. there's nothing much going on in a life of an 8-month-old except sleep and eat, so this is all about her sleeping and eating. well, of course, poo too but we'll not get into that.

after that rocky patch of 430am wake ups, amani's been an absolute angel when it comes to sleeping. a good 10-hour sleep at night, with a bit of kicking and shoving of her blanket, a good hour nap late in the morning and a solid two-hour nap in the afternoon. that's not including the short naps she takes while in the car ferrying abangs to school. all in all, she probably gets around 14 hours of sleep a day, which is just nice according to babycentre.

i'm absolutely all for babies and children and even teenagers who get a good amount of sleep. other than the selfish me getting my me-time, its also because the grow and regain their energy while sleeping. my boys would take afternoon naps when they were younger. now that they're grown, the afternoon naps are non-existent but they have an early bedtime and weekends are for them to have a good lie in, if they have no activities.

while amani's sleeping habits are just awesome, her eating was not on the same level. i mean, yes, she eats and she eats a lot and is on the chunky side but i'm not all that happy with it. because of the rocky patch she had when she turned 7 months, i was on a mission to feed her and feed her food. i gave her porridge and porridge and porridge. twice a day, full bowl. complemented by full bottles. its good, she was full, she slept, she slept a lot in fact. but no, i was wrong. it made her weak and inactive. the fault was all mine. i pumped too much heavy food into her to get her to sleep through the night that it took away her activeness and her learning and i feel, slowed down her development a bit.

when she started solids, it was carrots and sweet potatoes and potatoes and broccoli and apples and bananas and avocado and all the beautiful fruits and veggies and it turned to bowls of chicken porridge last month. so i flipped the page back to fruits and veggies. i stopped the rice and gave her sweet potatoes as a substitute. i made sweet potatoes, carrots, chicken and peas for her dinner and gave her oatmeal with either banana or apple for her breakfast. i was a bit scared initially, thinking she wont be full but the sweet potatoes was a good substitute for the rice and she's well fed. in fact, she loves her fruit and veggies more as they have more taste than the plain porridge.

although its only been 3 days but the change in her is magnificent.  she seemed more active, she looks more lean, she moves around more, she sleeps on her side (which is super because after her porridge she would usually just lie down on her back, unmoving and sleep). she's more active in her bath when previously she could just sleep through her bath time. she laughs and babbles a lot in the car. she calls out to people. she's happy with longer tummy time. yes, only 3 days but its been an active 3 days. i'm not against porridge or anything but my reason for changing her diet was wrong and i wanted to make amends for that. she was happy with fruits and veggies and there was no reason to change her diet in the first place.

let's hope there'll be more positive changes as the month progresses and then there'll be more for me to update in her monthly entries.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Happy Seven Months Amani

she's an older baby now. very, very different from 6-7 months ago, when she would just cry and cry and cry. and put my on edge with worry and tiredness and stress.

she's such a fluffy baby now. she smiles so so much, she babbles so so much, she eats so so much. amani loves eating, like totally loves everything i give her. i started with carrots and carried on with all sorts of veggies with carrots. she's taken apples with carrots, sweet potatoes with carrots, potatoes with carrots, butternut squash with carrots and her latest, broccoli with carrots. by the time she's had her solid for a good month and is ok with a few fruits and vegs, i took out the carrot and introduced her to a wider menu. i would make porridge as her basic but this time her porridge contains chicken (soon salmon) and spinach. and then the fruits and veggies as accompanies. the porridge can last about 5 days and the veggies for about 3. that way the basic would remain the same but i can experiment with the accompanies.

her food seem to fill up her tummy really well so i decreased her formula to just 2 bottles a day. both, before she before her afternoon nap and one before bedtime.

it worked initially. she'd be full and happy and slept well. then i don't know what happened. she started her 4.30am wake ups. i'm used to her changing her sleeping pattern slightly, every 2 weeks or so. she'd have night feeds once every 2 weeks when that happens. but this one went on. and on and on. it came up to 4 nights, then 5, then i was screaming in frustration. what happen???

so i upped her bottles again. but this time, i gave her half bottles at each feed. she's get 5oz after breakfast at 10ish, then 5oz at lunch at 2ish, and one more after her dinner at 7ish. then a full (sometimes she doesn't finish, though) at bedtime. its been 4 days and it seems to work. no more 4.30 morning feeds.

apart from her food intake, amani's been very relaxed. a bit too relaxed for me. i can't help but look at amira at the same age and going, why aren't you doing this amani? amira's already sitting and pulling her body forward at this age, while amani's content with just lying down. even during her tummy time she'd roll over so that she's on her back. she doesn't move much when she's sleeping and stays in place. she doesn't move much when she's lying down on my bed while asyraf made 2 rounds in his second month. she just stays put...except for her legs. those are constantly kicking and shoving but that's it.

having said that, amani is super alert. her eyes follow everyone everywhere, her mouth babbles non-stop, she calls out to everyone when she's awake...pick me up, pick me up. her hands and fingers are constantly moving, she grasping things, reaching for things, holding on to mummy's and kakak's fingers.

amani's settled her first batch of immunisation. she's up for her MMR and chicken pox at 9 and 12 months and her fourth pneumococcal around the same time. with all the virus around i'm very worried and keep doing a countdown until she's gotten most of her jabs. at her 6th month jab (triple antigen) she weighed a whopping 7.9kg. i read that by a baby's first year she should triple her birth weight. well, she's ticked that then and she's still got another half a year to go.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

School Holiday 2017

5 weeks of school holidays totally just flew by. i had no plan whatsoever for the boys, just some quality time with their ps3 so that they'll leave the girls alone & not disrupt their afternoon nap time.

i started the holidays doing i usually do at the start of holidays - reorganising wardrobes. since i need to move uniforms around - hand down some, replenish some, throw away some, give away some - i also looked at the boys other clothes. the guestroom downstairs was full of boxes, some empty some full. i asked the boys to put aside the clothes they have outgrown and i went through them to see whether they should be handed down or given away. once i have sorted those piles, i brought down those to give away and reorganised the boxes in the guestroom. ariff and akmal helped me pack and label 9 boxes and are awaiting to give them away.

i also reorganised everyone's personal file. amir brought home a lot of certificates on his last day of primary school and i had put them aside until i find the energy to file them (yes, filing takes up a whole lot of energy). currently, i have sorted out all documents into 2 files - baby & kindy and primary school. i'll be adding secondary school files soon. amani's documents are at the moment in a plastic folder as i have not gotten hers ready yet.

with amani being so small, we had no holiday planned this year. we did, however, slot in a quick 4-day weekend getaway down south to jb and singapore. it was a good drive to test the car we got a few weeks earlier. it was also still early in december and the roads and universal studios were not packed with cars and with people. it was actually a nice drive down and a nice drive back and a pretty ok time at the theme park. the jb-singapore trip entries can be found on our travelblog.

as for the school stuff, i went quite low key this time around. amir needed new uniforms, of course, since he'll be changing schools. ariff needed new uniforms as well, since he's gotten much bigger the past year (and because he was wearing last year's uniforms and they've been eating his tummy and sides). akmal's uniform had been ordered and he'll be recycling his sra uniform. asyraf's wearing this year's uniform for sk and getting new sra uniform as he too have outgrown his.

as usual, i buy uniform really early, as soon as the holiday begins because i need to get the name tags and badges sewn and then iron them. i buy early and procrastinate on the other 2 tasks, usually. this year, i had to settle the badges and name tags on my own, as my late mom would do them the past few years. i couldn't be bother sending them to a shop so i used to uhu glue method. i used this method on some uniform last year, especially those with name tags that i had received after school had commenced. i don't particularly like this method as its difficult to take the name tags off at the end of the year. i prefer the name tags to be intact as i'll use them again for the upcoming years.

but this time around, as asyraf & ariff will only have one more year at sra, i chose the uhu method as i dont need to use their name tags again. ariff will also probably be wearing the same sk uniform for the next 2 years so i don't need to take them off. or maybe i'll just get more when the school commences so that i'll have back-up if i need to get him new uniforms. so the day after getting the uniforms, i settled the name tags and badges and ironed them.

we bought the boys' shoes and socks the day after we bought the uniform. it wasn't even december yet and we've settled uniform, socks and shoes. the lady at the shoe store said its a good move to get them early on. but of course...

next on my list were stationeries. i actually planned to get them at the stationery warehouse shop nearby. but we had vouchers from the uniform shopping spree so we went back to the same shop and got stationeries there. i managed to check almost all using the voucher (plus some cash). i've got a bit left to buy but generally they're all settled. i also got some school sets online from mph and that sorta settled their basic stationery needs.

the boys are quite lucky this year to be getting really good text books. i went through their stack of books and practically all don't require re-wrapping. i was about to jump up high until i saw ariff's stack. i went through the core subjects, ok...i expected them to need re-wrapping because of the usage, then i realised all his books were not wrapped. and ariff broke his wonderful surprise, he helped un-wrap the old wrappers for me. oh ariff!! ok ok...only 13 books, not too bad. i managed to do them all in less than an hour.

i went to the school bookstore on the third week of school holidays. i get this done quite early usually - right after uniforms. but this year i wasn't in the mood. i really don't like the school enforcing this activity book culture because there have been many instances where the books were not used, or only a portion used, and you can't recycle them as they change publishers every single year. and then of course the book wrapping (urghh!) so i was really not into buying books at all. i opted not to wrap the activity books this time. after 6 years, i just don't care anymore about wrapping books haha! so its just labeling them and writing names, which was a breeze!

we'll only get sra text books once school commences so i can put them off for now. i don't normally wrap sra activity books, so there's not much more left to wrap.

after much dilly dallying, we finally went to amir's school to get his starter kit and books. amir has loads of writing books but only a small number of reference books, which can be used until he is in form 3 so that's a refreshing change.

we spent the rest of the school holidays at home basically. we did some movie outings - justice league, the long-awaited star wars sequel no 8. the boys had a few outings with friends and went bowling with tiza. we went for a couple of birthday gatherings.

we also had a staycation over the long christmas weekend and registered amir, asyraf and akmal in a kids marathon in sepang the same weekend. that's about it, actually. pretty low key holiday this time around.

after 6 years of spending hours at the agama school on the first day of school to settle fees, i'm so happy that this year parents are invited to pay fees during the school holidays. alhamdulillah, thank you ustaz and ustazah for doing this. so happy we'll have a much more calm first day of school for the first time in 7 years.

we ended the holidays with amir's secondary school orientation. not my first choice of a secondary school but oh well, i accept and i move on and i hope and pray for the best for him at this place.


the value of marriage is not that adults produce children but that children produce adults - peter de vries

grown-ups never understand anything for themselves and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explainning things to them - antoine de saint-exupery
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