Monday, April 18, 2016

Amira Turns Six Months

yeay…mega huge item ticked off our family calendar - amira is six months old!

this time her development requires some assistance. we sought help from the iPad (she's watching a lot of ABCs, nursery rhymes, nasyid, iqra and listening to a lot of Quran recital), we sought help from the babysnug (to feed her and let her watch telly in the kitchen), we sought help from sophie the giraffe (because she's very into grabbing and putting things in her mouth).

amira's gotten her rolling over almost to perfection, she can take her arm out from underneath her and push up the upper part of her body. she's managed to roll herself over a few times. she's pushing herself up high while on her tummy. her legs have gotten stronger when we hold her standing up. her feet is beginning to flatten.

amira's main development in her sixth month is sleeping through the night and weaning.

i've been monitoring her sleep patterns and drinking habit for a couple of weeks before i start to train her to sleep through the night. i noticed that she drinks very little during her night feeding, i'd make a 4oz bottle and she'd drink 2oz. then she can hold on for 8-9 hours for her subsequent feed. well, if you can do without a bottle for 8 hours then you can certainly sleep for 8 hours, can't you? so i started with that. i gave her a big bottle before she goes to sleep, about 7oz. she would be all fussy and crying and moody between her bath time and sleep but i held on. no bottle! after about an hour of getting her all tired, i'd take her to her cot, give her a bottle of milk and then she'd fall asleep. the first couple of nights she's wake up crying. i held on. i just rolled her over and she whimpered but would slowly fall asleep. it went on for 2-3 nights then she just gave up the whimpering bit and would just sleep on til day break. alhamdulillah, its been a wonderful-no night feeds-month and she's holding and i'm holding on and we're all well and good in the morning.

amira's weaning is a big deal at home. the boys have been so excited to see her eat and have her join us at the dining table and see her eat and have her eat out with us and see her eat…basically, they just want to see her eat. i've been collecting her weaning-assistants for the past month - the event steamer blender, the cath kidston spoons, the squeezey spoon, the bowls, the freezer tray. ok, so not only the boys are excited, mummy's excited as well.

i started amira off with a bowl of brown rice porridge for breakfast, exactly a couple of weeks before she turned 6 months. i wanted to give her her first food the weekend before her 6th month but she looked really ready for food, so we opted for an earlier day. i bought a pack of brown rice at the supermarket, washed and dried them once i got home and put them through the dry mill to finely blend them. they looked and smelled like the nestum brown rice cereal. hubby says it could be more fine and the later bits of the bowl did become a bit dry, will have to adjust that.

for late lunch, on the same day, i made her carrot puree with the event steamer blender. what a joy this invention is. i absolutely love it. the puree turned out so smooth. amira didn't finish her first bowl, maybe it was too near to her breakfast and she was still full. i should give her a bit of space between meals.

over the couple of weeks, she's eaten lots of rice porridge (brown and white), apple puree, carrot puree, potato with broccoli and sweet potato puree. will try other varieties soon.

with the weaning and sleeping through the night, can't wait to see how much she will grow in the coming months. amira's shy of 6kg at her last check up, three weeks ago - 5.9kg. hopefully she'll be putting on more.

Friday, April 01, 2016

The Lunch Boxes Journey - February & March 2016

february's a short month due to the long chinese new year break. march is as well as the first school holiday is right smack in the middle of march. coupled with the boys being ill and amira under the weather, my lunch boxes preparation was not as extensive compared to january. therefore, i'll combine both months into one entry.

i think this type of entry won't be a long one, after a while my lunch boxes would look the same. unless, of course, i step up a bit, and prepare heavier meals, especially for amir and asyraf's morning school recess. maybe i'll do that…after fasting month. yes, let's procrastinate from now.

this is how my prep table looks like. nothing fancy, just simple bread, filling and sides.

anyway, for february, beef sandwiches take centre stage. because hubby bought a month-long supply of beef strips. i do try to vary the sandwich filling between beef, chicken, tuna and sardine, but since there is over-supply of beef, that's the main filling.

there's also the 'leftover' lunch boxes - dinner leftovers straight into their containers.

and the 'extra effort' days, when i prepare simple food - nuggets, sausages, boiled eggs.

ariff and akmal's been asking for nutella toast for afternoon school. easier to prepare and they don't have much of an appetite at 3pm-4pm on a hot day. i offer cookies and zip wafers and fruits but they just settle with one or two nutella toasts. amir and asyraf want a big portions of food for morning school but for agama school, they settle for something simpler and light. they would come back form agama school and have snacks while they do their homework.

i gave them lunch money more than a couple of times in february. amira being unwell means less sleep for me. and i just can't get myself psyched about lunch boxes so early in the morning during those days. i should look up make-ahead breakfast menus to counter that. and start making big batches of cookies of muffins for the sides.


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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