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Adios 2005 Welcome 2006 December 31, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in celebration, myself, parenting.

2005 has been a good year, mainly because of Zara.

Nothing has prepared me for this, but
I started to realise the joy of motherhood
I started understanding the capacity to love, to care for, to nurture another individual

I saw the first smile, the first sit, the first crawl, the first swim, the first step, the first dance
I heard the first laugh, the first word, the first singing, the first phrase
I experienced her first kiss, her first hug, her first snuggle
I nursed her first fever, her first fall

2005 I fell in love all over again, this time more passionate than any other times I’d experienced with a man. I became a mother and fell in love with my daughter

2005 was all about Zara, Zara and Zara, and I know the coming years would be the same too
2005 was a good year, with Zara, everything is good

Thank you all for reading my blog, for sharing the joy and pain with me

Happy New Year to All Of You!

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Off Today December 30, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in misc, myself.

Since we had stremyx, most of my nights during the weekends are spent on blog surfing or blogging (if we didn’t go out).

Tonight, I wanted to post some of Zara’s photo taken yesterday when I took her swimming with King’s Wife’s kids in my sis’ appartment.

After I logged on, Daddy came in, and asked sweetly (rarely does he speak to me in such a manner) if we should watch a movie together (DVD of course). I can’t refuse those small bambi eyes can I?

So I shall try to post the photos tomorrow, and watch a movie with him (maybe Cinderella Man). Just to be a good wife occasionally. If you wonder if anything steamy going to happen after that, well, just remember the photo in this post. Unless we play London Bridge Is Falling Down later.

Oops, this is a blog for my daugther. I shouldn’t get too detail with such things, so I shall stop before I say too much.

(Just to make me feel guilty, he’s blasting All By Myself on his amplifier now. Ok ok, I should go now)

Favourite things – books December 29, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in parenting, Zara.

Both Daddy and I read a lot at home; in the house, we would rather read than to watch TV (we are one of the rare few who don’t subscribe to Astro or satellite TVbecause we’re quite stingy). When we do watch TV, it is mostly the news (for Daddy) and a movie (DVD) for me.

We introduced books to Zara as soon as she could sit up supported, her concentration span initially was of course very short, not being able to even sit through 1 or 2 pages of picture books. As her understanding of the language and her awareness of her surrounding increased, she starts being able to look at the pages for a longer period, and slowly begins to show more enthusiasm. The first book she really love was Baby, Boo! (the book that actually taught her how to kiss at 8 month old). After Baby, Boo! she seems to show more interest in books, even my novels (she likes to take it and flip the pages to check out what I was reading, probably wonder why I’m so engrossed in books without a single picture).

Every night, before she goes to bed, either Daddy or I will read her 2 books. Most of the time, we asked her to choose her books from her little library; sometimes when we’re bored reading to her the same book over and over again, to provide her with more variety, we picked the books instead.

Even when there’s no one to read to her, she sometimes would still flip a book and read to herself in her own language.

Here are a few of her book moments…



Introducing Formula December 28, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in breastfeeding, development, parenting, Zara.

I’m in the process of trying to wean Zara off breastfeeding. For her 1st year, the only milk she’d taken was just breast milk; except on the occasion when I was away for a week on business trip in May, and I didn’t have enough stocked up for her consumption.

To start off, I tried to introduce her to formula on days when my milk supply was low. I got Tuyam to supplement her with 1 or 2 oz of formula (Enfalac) after she’d taken the expressed breast milk. According to Tuyam, she had tossed the bottle away in anger when she tasted the milk to be different, refusing to take any, and survived on whatever I could provide (i.e. 3oz on some days per feed).

Zara does have discerning taste. I’d tried the formula myself, and I find that it’s absolutely yucky. Very strong iron taste, and so fake (chemical taste). I’m one who would like to know the taste of the food I put into Zara’s mouth, so I’d also tasted my own breast milk. I have to say the taste of breastmilk is absolutely heavenly, it’s creamy but with the right consistency and with a hint of sweetness. It’s not something I can describe, you have to taste it yourself to know what I mean, but I know most would just turn their noses the other way even if it was something you produced (the husbands too would probably not want to taste their wives’ milk).

The other day, I got a pack of of Enfagrow A+ (Honey) sample, and I thought this would probably taste better than the Enfalac. So I got Tuyam to start giving Zara some on days where I could only express less than 4oz per feed. Zara took this better than the Enfalac, according to Tuyam, which is good.

Today, while at home, Zara has been coming to me every 2 hours and asking for milk. “Huh Huh (her pronunciation for ‘milk milk’)! Huh Huh!” she had her head on my chest. One of my breasts was bitten by her 2 days back, and there’s actually a cut, every time she nursed I had to bite my lips and endure the pain, as one of her teeth would just sink right into the wound, the feeling is exactly like rubbing salt to a wound. *ouch* I cringed every time she wanted to nurse.

When she asked for her 4th feed at lunch time, I just told her, “Mummy no more milk milk, you want bottle?” just to test the water. She didn’t shake her head, but instead started chanting “Bottle! Bottle!” I quickly got Tuyam to sterilise her bottle and made her 2oz of formula, and then went into hiding. After 5 minutes, Tuyam came to tell me she’d finished the milk.

After lunch, she again came to me for milk (another cringe). I asked her if she wanted the bottle? Again, she didn’t shake her head. This time, I made the formula instead, and tried feeding her, but she wouldn’t take it from me. She just pushed the teat out every time I placed it in her mouth. After a few tries and she didn’t suck on the bottle, I got Tuyam to feed her instead, and I sat next to them. She refused to take, and gave me that sheepish smile. I thought maybe I should again go into hiding. After Tuyam assured her a few times that I wasn’t around and with her sticking out her head to scan the living room to confirm I wasn’t around, she started sucking on the teat, and took another 2oz.

When I reappeared after she’d finished, she again had this sheepish smile, as though feeling embarrassed that she’d taken formula milk. Maybe she was worried it would hurt my feelings.

After this feed, the bottle trick won’t work any more. Every time she wanted her feed and I said “you want bottle?” She just shook her head and started groping for my breasts. So I couldn’t put off nursing her any longer, and just have to endure the pain *frown*, again, and again, and again(3 more feeds till she slept *ouch*).

On a happier note, I’m glad she’d started accepting formula, which means I could slowly wean her off now. This is my first step. The 2nd step is to prepare myself emotionally. Breastfeeding is a bond I have with her, will I be able to cope when we no longer share this bond?

Home This Week December 27, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in development, language, myself, Zara.

Office is shut this week, so all of us have to take compulsory leave. I’m home with the little one, and luckily I have Tuyam, or else I won’t be able to even go and clear my bowel with the little koala, Zara, clinging to me.


She uttered her first phrase 2 nights ago. I was nursing my migraine and I heard her told Daddy, “Uh-Oh, book” while pointing to a pile of books on the floor (Even though it’s not fully in English, it’s still a milestone to capture)

She uses Uh-Oh for things dropped, things missing, things lying on the floor. For the above phrase, her books were scattered on the floor after Daddy read to her, so she was probably complaining about the mess.


This morning, after Zara woke up this simple dialogue took place :
Me : Zara, lets go downstairs already!
Zara : Mum Mum *excitedly*!
Me : Yes, go downstairs to mum mum!
Zara : Wise (her pronunciation of rice)!
Me : No, not rice. Morning we don’t take rice.
Zara : Wis (her pronunciation of fish)!
Me : No, no fish in the morning. We have bread or biscuit ok?
Zara : Bed (her pronunciation of bread)! Bed! Bed!
When we got downstairs, she went to the kitchen and chanted Bed until I gave her a small slice of bread.
(She loves fish, and rice compared to her porridge, and bread is her staple diet too).


Before we got broadband, most nights, I will be in the room reading after Zara has gone to bed or interrupt Daddy’s love making to his DIY amplifier to have some small talks.

After we got broadband, most nights, I would be in the study reading blogs or blogging, and if Daddy wasn’t downstairs making love to his amplifier, he would be coming into the study to make small talks, but I would be rolling my eyes and waiting for him to finish whatever he wanted to say so I can go back to whatever I was reading or doing again.

So sad.

Christmas and Boxing Day December 27, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in celebration, Zara.

So what did we do on Christmas day and Boxing day?

On Christmas day, we went to visit my sister in the hospital again. She was all ready to leave the hospital for home, was just waiting for BIL to come and pick her up.

After the hospital we went to MIL’s place. Daddy helped to paint the grill there, and I tried to get Zara to nap on the thin and narrow piece of padded cloth MIL provided. When I told Zara to sleep, she just leaned back so suddenly, and the thin material didn’t cushion her head, so she knocked her head and cried. It took me some time to pacify her. For the rest of her nap, I had to stay with her just to make sure she didn’t turn (and move out of the narrow cloth) and knock her head on the floor. I also took a mental note that the next time if we need to let Zara nap in MIL’s place, we have to bring our own little matress.

Because I had stayed up very late the last few nights to blog, when it was time for dinner, I had this massive migraine (it always comes when I don’t have enough sleep). When we arrived at the restaurant, I had no appetite to eat, and after just a few mouth full of rice, I retched. I got MIL and SIL to feed Zara dinner, while I rested in the adjoining furniture shop (which was also part of the restaurant).

It was a very bad night for me, went to the toilet many times to throw up, and the throbbing headache was very unbearable. I had an early night, and reminded myself I should not blog or blog surf till too late.

On Boxing Day, I was feeling better, since I had 1ohours of sleep the night before. We visited my friend, Sandy, who’d given birth almost a month ago, together with another close friend YC and her son Bryan. I have to say new borns do grow very fast, the baby looks very different from the time we visited him in the hospital.

While we did some catching up, the kids had a great time in Sandy’s place, playing with Sandy’s eldest daugther’s toys.

Here’s a shot of them, Kei Kei (Sandy’s niece), Yen Mae (Sandy’s eldest daugther), Bryan and Zara.

In the evening, after a bit of rest at home, Daddy decided to bring Zara to the Shah Alam Lake Garden. Zara again had a good time running and walking about in the park. She was curious about almost everything she saw on the floor, the ice cream wrapper, the fallen leaves, the tall grass. I almost freaked out every time she bent down to touch something (I can’t stand her getting dirty).

Christmas Celebration – Photos December 25, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in celebration, Zara.

We celebrated Christmas Eve in a Chinese Restaurant, then went back to King’s Wife’s place to cut King’s birthday cake; and for the kids, the happiest moment, opening the presents! Too bad my eldest sis is still in the hospital because she’s just given birth, or there’ll be a bigger crowd.

Cool kids in the family

Zara enjoying some of the adults’ food

Zara in good spirit

Zara with the men in the family

Zara helping to distribute presents

Kids opening their presents (Zara with my help, of course)

Zara with her 2 favourite presents, a pair of shoes (from my youngest sis), and a play phone (from King’s Wife).

The trees, ours (top left), King’s wife’s which was chocking with presents, and the empty tree.

Merry Christmas every one!

Another Addition to Our Family December 24, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in celebration.

This the seasons to have babies.. fa lalalala lalala la.

Not me though, although I’m working on it.

My eldest sister has just given birth to a baby girl this morning. She was supposed to go for a scheduled Cesarean on 28th December, because she still wanted to go for our family big Christmas dinner before her slim down 15kg within one month diet confinement. The little baby however, have her own plans.

My sister had a bloody show (this is not swearing, but a pregnancy term) this morning, and so she admitted herself. The Dr confirmed that she was in labour and hence performed a c-sect on her. Baby was two and half weeks early.

King’s Wife and I together with the kids met up to do some very last minute shopping in 1 Utama. We started as early as 10:30am, and thought we’ll go over to visit my sister after lunch. By the time we’re done, it was 4pm, and our shopping filled up 1 supermarket trolley and Zara’s stroller (Zara just had to walk). We even met with the famous blogger, Peter Tan before we left (and I went up to say ‘Hi’ to him, and he looks good in his short crew cut).

By the time we arrived at the hospital, it was about 5:30pm. My sister seemed to be doing very well as she’s still very energetic although she was confined to her bed.

My little niece looks very much like my brother-in-law (actually they are not legally married, but then he’s her lifetime partner, so I guess it’s the same as in-laws?). She has very sharp features, pointed chin, big eyes, prominant double eye lids (actually our family trade mark too, but too bad Zara didn’t inherit this from me, but has Daddy’s eyes), and a perky nose.

Zara was more gentle this time compared to the last time we visited my friend and her new born baby. I told her she’s now a che-che (Chinese: big sister) so she has to ‘sayang’ (Malay: stroke gently and lovingly) the baby; not sure if she understood the che-che part, but she just lightly patted the baby’s body.

My sis’ baby was very alert, the whole time we were there, she was glancing around with her eyes wide opened. She also sneaked her hand out from her tight swaddle, and started putting her fingers in her mouth to suck. She has lots of saliva too for a new born, on a few occasions, she was choking on her own saliva, and even left a wet patch on her basinet. Such a cutie she is! Here are 2 of her photos :

My sister is also trying to breast feed her baby although she’s having some problem (she has inverted nipple which makes suckling very difficult for the baby). The nurses in the hospital are very helpful, and will be helping her nurse using a nipple shield. Hope the little baby will cooperate and suck!

The next few days, besides going for our Christmas Eve family dinner, we’ll also probably spend a lot of time in the hospital visiting my sis and the little one.

Solution to a Running-around Toddler December 23, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in bitching, parenting, Zara.

Since Zara could walk very well now, and prefers to walk about on her own without her hand being held; and because I’m getting old I have no energy to run after her, and I don’t normally bring my maid along to look after her while I do my shopping, I have to find a solution to make sure she’s always within a perimeter I want her to be.

This is my solution :

She takes it very well. Happy to reach her hand out for me to strap the wrist strap on her, and doesn’t mind the confined area she could roam. However, people around her wasn’t as optimistic.

Samantha, “She’s like a dog”
My reply, “No, she’s not, it’s just like holding on to her hand”
Alicia, “My mummy (King’s Wife) never used that on me”
My reply, “Because last time you have Aunty Nora (their previous maid) chasing after you every time we go out”
(And they happily helped me to hold on to the harness with Zara leading the way after this)

And you get passerby throwing glances at the evil mother me, and they try to discreetly point to our directions and get their companion to look our way as well.

The worst of the lot comes from, who else, but Daddy.
Daddy: *anger tone* Why are you doing this to her?
Me : Why not?
Daddy : She’s like a dog on leash
Me : Who said so. This is to keep her within a safe distant even if she wanted to run about
Daddy : *still in anger tone* You are using it only because you bought it
Me : *roll eyes and speak slowly* I BOUGHT IT BECAUSE I WANTED TO USE IT.
Daddy : She looks so stupid
Me : *really, what is his problem?* She doesn’t! I don’t have the energy to run after her. If you have, I remove the strap, you go chase after her than.
Daddy : Sure! I’ll do that.

Yeah right.. After few minutes playing catching with Zara, he started carrying her. I guess, that’s easier than chasing after her right?

I don’t see what is really wrong with using a harness on Zara. It allows her to roam freely, but within a safe distant from me. It makes sure that even if I was engrossed with browsing at something in the shop, she won’t run away and get lost.

Is it really that cruel? I hope I won’t just succumb to pressure and toss the harness away.

Christmas Sing Song Project – White Christmas December 22, 2005

Posted by Zara's Mama in celebration, misc.

This is just to advertise for one eat full nothing to do blogger who managed to get a few other bloggers to sing and record the song White Christmas (without having to meet them), and then arranged and remixed it to one single track.

I was invited to join in the sing song project, but because I had no headset at home (after I’d moved house, lots of things still in boxes which we haven’t found time to dig out yet), I couldn’t record it (w/out the music).

I think this fella did quite a wonderful job, please go and check the song out yourself.

Btw, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.

Our family will still be in KL though, so I’ll still be blogging during this period.

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