Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Adventures of Asyraf and His Susu

getting amir off his milk was not difficult. before he turned one, he was already showing signs of dislike to bottles and milk. giving him even an oz was such a task. before long it was wasted tumblers after tumblers (he grew out of bottles after he turned 1). amir fully stopped before he turned 20 months.

asyraf is a different case altogether. due to his terrible-horrible temperament when he was younger, his bottle became more than just for milk. it also became his pacifier. he would not let go of his bottle. if he screamed, we would shove a bottle in his mouth. of course, the bottle cannot be empty, else he'd be consuming air. so it was like dumping oodles and oodles of milk into his small body. there were times when he would throw up from too much milk and there were nights when he would scream out loud because he was too full and could not sleep. what did we do...gave him his bottle. vicious cycle!

the pacifying effect stayed with him till recently. if he wakes up at night, he would feel around in the dark for his bottle and would not go back to sleep unless its back in his mouth.

asyraf was also too sensitive that we dared not change his milk. he was on enfalac AR for his first 12 months and we moved on to enfapro when he neared his first year. once he turned 18 months, i had to think of what milk to give him. enfagrow came in 3 flavours and i didnt want to risk him showing adverse reaction.

after some research and recommendation from friends (azie esp) i decided to give him dugro. one of the reason was that it had 'natural flavour', not that i know what that meant. at least it wasnt vanilla or chocolate or honey. i was so scared to give him, i cant afford an "asyraf throwing up" phase.

that was the first step to my mission. the next is to slowly give him less milk. we would make extremely diluted milk for asyraf, ie 3 scoops for a 9oz bottle (1/3 of the recommended serving). he took it well, surprisingly. didnt kick up much fuss.

the third step is to take the bottle away from him. for the past few weeks, we've been constantly changing teats because asyraf bites them. $10 per teat, asyraf! i thought...ok, lets change bottles. but that would defeat the purpose as he would bite whatever new bottles i get for him. so its spout time. i bought the avent spout for him since he was 6 months. ever since then he would scream and shout and throw the bottle if we gave him the spout.

this time around, mummy doesnt care...spout or no milk. asyraf chose no milk. erk...that got me worried a bit. from 5 full 9oz-bottles a day (sometimes 2 bottles before he goes to sleep) to absolutely no milk at all? its ok, we'll see how far he'd take this. i would pack a bottle with spout and a tumbler in his daycare bag, and told the teacher, offer the spout first, if he doesnt want then offer the tumbler. he took the tumbler. he wont drink as fast as he would with a bottle but he chose the tumbler over the spout. so i stopped packing bottles and would just put tumblers in his bag.

at home i would give him a bottle with teat only once. that is before he goes to sleep. much as i want to get him off the bottles and milk, i would want him to be full when he sleeps. no waking up whimpering at night, no waking up hungry at night. at least let him have a good night's sleep.

but asyraf was choosy though after the change. he would only drink when he was really, really desperate. no drinking in the car anymore. no more drinking before he took his daytime nap. and now, no more seconds before he goes to bed.

alhamdulillah, as of yesterday he had only 2 bottles of milk. once during his afternoon nap, i gave him a bottle with spout. i dont actually know when he drank because when i left him in his playpen he wouldnt look at the bottle. once more before he slept, i gave him a bottle with teat as i wanted him to drink and drink fast. i gave the bottle quite early so i made another just in case. asyraf said no...but since he says no to everything, so i made it anyway. he didnt drink so i guess he meant it.

so hopefully asyraf's susu adventure will end soon.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


before we drive off from the daycare...

* note: amir is actually waving...

Sunday, June 22, 2008

My Boys

its been ages since i blogged about my 3As. with 3 boys, its so important to note down everything they do since i dont want to have the memory of one cloud my memory of another. so what are they up to now...

amir is so lazy in school. he gets bored, according to cikgu sally. he's ok knowledge wise...he knows his ABCs and 123s and he knows his songs (in his own pelat language) and dance moves. all that's good but he gets bored when he's in class and would just stop learning. i've asked cikgu sally to be extra fierce with him. amir got no 9 in his last exams, 9 out of 16. sigh...not that we're worried or anything, i've seen his exam papers and we know how the scoring system is, so its no biggie. but the fact that he's lazy, that we're a bit worried.

amir has a wide vocabulary. more malay than english. his english is pretty limited to what we use at home, mainly stop, no, dont, please. he doesnt answer questions in english and he cant really understand instructions in english.

he's very choosy with his clothes. in school, amir's required to wear his uniform on mondays and wednesdays, his sports attire on tuesdays and thursdays and his baju melayu on fridays. more often than not, i see all these clothes left untouched in his bag. initially i thought cikgu sally doesnt change his clothes and he doesnt take his afternoon bath. then i found out amir doesnt like wearing those clothes. since he dresses himself after a bath, he would pick out his mickeys and poohs and 'baju lawa' and would reject those he doesnt like. hence no uniform, no trackbottoms and no oversized-baju melayus.

at home he would throw a tantrum if his pajamas is not up to his standard. and then daddy and mummy has to come up with a magical story about his pajamas and we would have to promise that the next night, he will wear something nice and 'lawa'.

tantrums and whining and crying is a norm for amir. if things doesnt go according to how he wants them to, he would scream and cry outloud, complete with 'takmo kawan...' and a raised fist. every night and every morning, there must be a crying session from him. for 3-4 weeks we had to endure amir crying from the moment we wake him up to the time he's in front of his daycare entrance. 20 minutes of crying, of 'tak nak school', of 'nak daddy'. i read in a magazine that at this age, a child is torn between being independent and hanging on to his parents. he wants to make decisions yet he wants to depend on his parents. so mar, its not pembawakan anak ok :)

amir fights with asyraf. not small fights but overblown pushing shoving throwing biting scratching fights. they would have new scrathes and bite marks everyday. the most recent is a bite mark right next to asyraf's eyebrow. of course fights are due to toys. amir must play with whatever toy asyraf has in his hands, it doesnt matter if its a new or old toy. whatever toy asyraf is playing with, amir must have it.

amir still sucks his 2 fingers. its gone to the point where the nails are soft and doesnt grow anymore. anyone got tips on how to stop!! he's gone for his 2nd dentist visit. despite the finger-sucking, alhamdulillah his teeth are ok.

asyraf bites! not just people...he also bites his bottle teats (cujie...sama kan?) money issue is one, safety is another. asyraf and ariff both uses the no4 teats (interchangeably) and on more than 1 occassion, ariff have been caught by sudden burst of milk from the leaking teats. we're getting him to use the spout now. we started way back when he was 6 months old but he rejected all the time. but now a mummy's gotta do what a mummy's gotta do...and that is force him. trial started 2 nights ago and for 2 nights he refused his bottle before going to sleep. he's also thrown his bottle out of the cot during his day naps. but today he finished a full 9-oz bottle, so we're hoping he'll get used to it soon. we need his teacher's help though. we'll tell them, if he refuse the bottle than dont give him milk. plain water will do. so he'll either take on the spout or stop his milk. either way is fine with is (although the latter is preferred).

asyraf has become more alert and more aware. he's taking in the cartoon characters, their songs, their actions. he loves einstein's 'pat pat pat' and tigger and pooh's 'think think think'. he knows songs from school, especially when amir sings. maybe he listens in when amir and his class learns new songs. he follows amir's actions and tones. amir's "abang long ada ni, haaa" is followed by asyraf's "na na naa haaaaaa"

we were watching a video of our gold coast trip when amir was about asyraf's current age. the main difference between the two of them is amir is more talkative, more confident with words, while asyraf is more polished in his movements. amir couldnt even nod or wave smoothly at that time but he talks non-stop. he was more expressive with and understood more words.

asyraf is more of an action person, doesnt say much but is strong, confident and brave. amir couldnt not step on the beach in awana kijal while asyraf ran head-first into the damai laut sea. due to that, asyraf has had more accidents than amir. he fell from the bed a couple of weeks back. not your ordinary falling off the bed incident, he fell head first. that soft 18 month old neck!
asyraf the my food taster. he would eat everything and anything with minimal effect. a contrast from him last year, when he could only eat plain nestum. he loves banana. he could eat 3-4 at one go. he gets the nickname cheeky monkey from his daddy. not only he loves banana, he loves hanging on to his carrier. when he's being carried, his carrier doesnt even have to hold him, asyraf would stick himself to his holder.

he loves to love. he would love with his cheek unless its ariff. he would kiss ariff with his mouth but other people he would give his cheek. asyraf has got the penyakit geram. if he sees ariff, he would run to hug and hold and kiss. he would go down on all fours to kiss ariff who is crawling. sometimes when the both of them are on the floor, it looks like they are actually twins.

my mr nice guy has turned into mr clingy. a baby who hates to be left alone, who would scream the house down if there's nobody in his sight. ariff also becomes mr hyde when someone gets a little too close to his nose. he absolutely hates his nose being wiped. he's the worst flu patient i've ever met.

ariff is a pro-crawler. he's slightly more relaxed than his elder brothers, taking his time with crawling and pulling himself to a standing position. he also doesnt crawl the way his elder brothers crawled - with one leg straight.

ariff is currently growing his third tooth. wonder what he'll be eating now. even with only 2 teeth he's eating rusk wonderfully. ariff is more like amir when it comes to milk consumption. he's doesnt drink much, before he sleeps he doestn even finish a 5oz bottle. he also doesnt look for milk the moment he opens his eyes in the morning, unlike asyraf. despite not drinking much, he still looks like a big round ball (his teachers call him sin chan)

ariff is true to his name. he is the baby both amir and asyraf adore and, unfortunately, fight over. if one hugs ariff, the other would run across the room to pull ariff away. both love playing peekaboo with ariff and would scream with delight when ariff laughes.

ariff is also mr smelly. his breath stinks! his clenched fist used to smell awful, now its his breath. you cant be too perfect, can you?

so thats my boys. we're not going to say we're stopping as it would have many different implications but we'll say, for now, 3 is enough.

Friday, June 20, 2008

While The Cat's Away...

the mice have a makan-makan.

we had a great selection of nasi lemak, 3 choices of sambal (ikan bilis, udang and sotong), spaghetti, sandwiches, kuihs, fruits, bubur kacang, ice cream, complete with teh tarik.

the bosses should have retreat more often eh?

went to mothercare during the friday long lunch. bought new teats for asyraf and ariff (i really need to encourage asyraf to use the spout - he bites!) and percy and duck for amir and asyraf (same colour so that they wont fight). also something for irsyad, who'll be having his birthday party tomorrow.

 about shopping, i bought this for myself last week. i've been telling hubby (i'm way past hinting) that i need a new purse but he has not bought one for me. i like the compartments. for all the mph and mcdonalds and toys r us card.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

From B To Me

B came and gone. everything...every single sen well-spent.

main target met. goodbye evo...

got a few things for the boys. promised each one a new toy. promise was made by me to me. i dont make a habit of buying toys for the boys, the occasional cars and balls here and there. i dont really like spending on toys unless they are educational. for those i would spulrge...the exersaucer, the leapfrog reader, a few fisher price items.

initially i only bought for amir & asyraf. but yells were heard when i brought home amir's thomas...yells from asyraf & hubby (who said...if you get a thomas for amir, you have to get a thomas for asyraf). so asyraf's toy was given to ariff and asyraf got another thomas.

some clothes for the boys. nothing more than $15 each. sandals for asyraf & socks for ariff.

a new car seat for big boy ariff. the car looks organised now.

new mattress for my elder two since they cant fit on one mattress.

and this for me. omigod...this is sooo not a good thing. can i now work from home?

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Family Retreat 2008

we were away for the company's annual family retreat. last year it was held at awana kijal, this year the venue was swiss garden damai laut. distance wise wasnt that far away but it was a bit secluded and we had to use the old trunk roads to get there. that made the journey extra long and boring since you cant speed.

the hotel is nice. disregard the lalat bit.

the retreat was for 4 days & 3 nights but we had to go a day earlier as i was part of the committee. i was also the gifts and prizes rep - challanging job, this is - getting all the names of the staff, their spouse and every single family member, ages, gender, shirt sizes. the i had to source for vendors (i did this with intan okay not the event management ye; terima kasih), then we had to choose the items (which was stressful trying to cater to each and everyone's taste, plus they asked why this item not included...they included last year - alaaa tukar-tukar lah sikit ish!), then negotiate a good price, view every single item, get tshirt samples and sizes, collate info from all the staff, distribute items accordingly. very tiring. my fellow committee members were wonderful...they helped out a lot especially when we had to prepare each and every goodie bag a day before everyone arrived (sorry again everyone for the boo boo made re the water tumbler)

the first day at the hotel was filled with meetings, briefings and prepare the goodie bags. hubby entertained the boys - moody and tired from the long trip.

everyone was scheduled to arrive in the late afternoon on the second day, so i took amir for a swim after breakfast. he swam for a while before falling under water. then its a big no-no to the pool from him.

activities for adult and children started on the 2nd day. it began with sandcastle competition for adult and tshirt painting and sand arts for children. amir was at the sand art place for a bit, interested more in the sand than the art.

then we took the boys to the beach. they played with the sand toys before asyraf went head first in to the sea. is that boy not scared of anything? i know he didnt get that from me...i'm terrified of open water. after the sea it was the pool. tropical-themed dinner was on that night.

organised for the day after was telematch for kids and adults as well as the funfair. they boys watched from afar. amir's mood was terrible and ariff flu was getting worse. asyraf relek je. hubby took the boys up early so they missed the funfair. after their nap, we took them to the beach. this was more relaxing, especially because ariff had so many carers...thanks you all (you silent readers you, nak letak gambar korang tapi takut kena marah lak...)

we left early on sunday. we had to get home by 1130am. we were off somewhere else that afternoon...


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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