Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Day Out With Ariff

i try to set aside a day a month for an outing with one of the eais. i started the tradition back in 2009, usually with hubby. we'd take one of the eais to a movie, lunch and, if we're in a giving mood, shopping for new toys.

we usually either take amir or asyraf as they enjoy going out and its great taking them away from their daily kindy schedule. we sometimes take akmal but not as often as the elder two as we'd have to be making formula, or taking him for diaper changes. that kinda takes the fun out of an outing. we'd never had the chance to take ariff out, for some reason or another. towards the second half of 2010 we had less opportunities to take the boys out for their outing. mainly because we were saving our leave for the year-end holiday.

as the hectic start of the year started to dwindle down, i decided to take a day off and bring ariff out. its about time he gets his special treatment. its as though he knew he was about to skip school, he started vomitting and having diarrheoa. he vomitted all over his bedsheet, pillowcase and duvet. all over his pajamas that it had to be changed 3 times. and as though he knew his mummy had planned to take the day off, he gave her an extra load of laundry to do.

we started the day late because i had a terrible headache from lack of sleep. i settled the laundry first, bathed ariff and akmal and gave them simple breakfast. we left home around 10am, stopped by kelana idaman leaving akmal screaming at the door of his daycare.

then we went off to 1utama. first on my list was to give the car a good washdown and polish - its way overdue, just like ariff's day off. i asked ariff what he would like to do, the movies, art work, eat. but he was happy just sitting from one car ride to another. then we walked over to parkson and looked at the toys on display (mainly because its on the way to the stationary section). ariff decided on some matchbox cars to bring home.

then we walked for a bit and stopped by newyork deli for an early lunch. ariff didnt want to eat and decided on just pancake and plain water. he was more interested in playing with his new toys and scribbling on the note book he just bought. finally we went to cold storage to get some groceries for the weekend cooking session - this was what ariff loved the most. he was asking about everything on the shelves and everything i put in the trolley. he loved it.

by 1pm, we started out journey home. ariff looked tired and my headache was terrible, both of us wanted to just go home and sleep.

i do know why we seldom take ariff out. he's terrible and refuse to listen. he wants to wander around by himself. but a couple of hours out is not too bad. ariff loved the attention he got, when his abangs returned home from school he was proudly showing off his new toys and telling them that he went to 1utama with mummy all by himself. maybe asyraf next month?

Sunday, March 27, 2011


after exactly 6 years of living with formula milk and many, many avent, i am so relieved to finally put an end to the bottle phase. our journey with formula milk was full of ups and downs - some easy, some difficult, some frustrating, some full of sigh moments.

when i was pregnant with amir, i read up on breastfeeding. i think majority of mothers strive to breastfeed their children, whether they succeed or fail is another matter altogether. i tried with amir but, unfortunately, i couldnt. amir was born with a tooth - it was painful. he could latch properly making it double painful. i remember i was down with a terrible fever due to engorgement because i couldnt feed and couldnt express. after 2 weeks i gave up.

choosing a formula for amir wasnt an easy process either. because i was determined to breastfeed, i didnt even research on formula. during the first week, hubby and i were like madmen looking for formula for amir. we bought a few and it gave amir rashes, diarrhoea and he threw up a lot. we went to see his peadiatrician who found out amir regurgitates and recommended enfalac AR. good news as amir took on to the formula with absolutely no problem. not only we found a formula that's ok for amir, we were also introduced to the enfa range that stayed with us throughout.

when asyraf came, it was breastfeeding 101 all over again. this time it was easier. asyraf was easy to feed but he was not an easy baby. i had a terrible time, mentally and physically, during my confinement and after a month, i just could not continue breast feeding. asyraf was needy and clingy and moody and colic and cries a lot. i could not go through sleepless nights and the constant cuddle. i apologised to him and started him on formula. we gave him the same formula as amir, enfalac AR. but this time enfalac's cost doubled. they had started a new range of this ++ business.

i was cheesed off, i mean fine if you want to have a new range, i'm all for research and development but there was no reason to stop the 'normal' range. we had no problem with it. i stayed with enfa during asyraf's first year because asyraf was sensitive but once he turned a year old (and when ariff was born) i threw out everything with the name enfa and settled for dugro instead - cheaper and no problem for the boys.

for ariff, i just gave up on breastfeeding totally. the same goes for akmal. i just couldnt go through it anymore. while ariff was 'easy' and would go along with anything, akmal spits his milk. so no dugro for him and back to enfalac AR. luckily it only lasted only 6 months then it was dugro for him as well.

stopping formula was another matter. for amir, it was an overnight success. i remember bringing bottles and cans to gold coast when amir was around 19-20 months and he absolutely refused to drink. that was the beginning of the end of formula for amir. for asyraf, he was attached. extremely attached and loved his bottles. he could drink 2-3 times a night and 4-5 times a day. he was still on formula when akmal was born, at that time asyraf was 28 months. i remember he stopped a bit after akmal was born, before he turned 2 & half years old. ariff's goodbye to formula was like amir's, it wasnt a big deal and it was like he just stopped one fine day and didnt look back.

now its akmal. other than his spitting phase, akmal's feeding wasnt difficult. he was always on the clock - once every 4 hours. then he started drinking less and and maintained 3-4 feed a day with no night feed once he was a year old. a few months after that he was on 2 bottles a day and can do without a bottle before going to sleep. travelling is much easier and we only need to bring the milk container and 1 bottle. not only he drinks only 2 bottles a day, each feed only contains 2 scoops of formula.

when we were in langkawi, i brought akmal's bottle & formula, but he didnt once drink. it was a concious decision to stop and we would distract him everytime he looked like he wanted a bottle. once he went back to school, i stopped putting his bottles in his bag and that was it, no more formula for him.

i know a lot of people keep going 'kesian...kesian' but its ok. akmal eats a lot, he can finish a whole plate of an adult's portion of nasi goreng, he munches on biscuits and eats a gardenia bun every morning before breakfast and another in the evening. to me, formula is a supplement. if akmal is well-fed, why would be need formula to supplement his food intake. he also drinks a lot of fresh milk, so he's got his daily calcium. now instead of avent in his school bag, akmal's got a box of dutch lady fresh milk.

for those worriwarts, calm down - my boys are growing healthily without formula. they still have their daily milk intake. i think its better giving fresh milk and plain water on a daily basis, than giving formula and cordial and fizzy drinks and vitagen and tea. i think those kids should be 'kesian'ed more than my boys. funny - asal no formula je kesian but giving formula to cover the fact that the child is given every other drinks in the world, ok pulak.

so...goodbye formula and bottles...hello fresh milk boxes...

Thursday, March 03, 2011

He Turns Two Today

adik baby is 2 today. the adik baby who is manja-ed by not only his mummy but his daddy and his abangs. he's the protected, the baby of the house. from the day he came home when he was 3 days old to the morning he turned 2 years old, he's everyone's little mamal jijat...


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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