August 19, 2005 at 6:29 pm

Maybe because I’m working from home, and she could hear my voice, and know I’m present; maybe she’s more choosy about who takes care of her, and where she is; or maybe it was just because she was ill the last week and still recovering; lately she had been extremely sticky, and preferred to glue on to me all the time than to play or to cruise when we’re in Karen’s house. She cried every time one of the maid came to carry her away so that I could work.

I tried to hide in the room to work today, so that she couldn’t see me or hear my voice at all, and it seemed to work. She only cried when I passed her back to the maid after nursing her.

Maybe next week, I can go back to the office to work.


August 14, 2005 at 12:48 pm

I started singing her the song, “If You’re Happy And You Know it”, 1 week ago.

I used the action “clap your hands”, “wave bye bye”, “give me five”, “kick your legs”, “stamp your feet”. In the beginning, she knew how to do the first 4, and when I stamped my feet, she got attracted to the sound, and looked down to see how I did it. She was quick to learn. After a few rounds of singing, over the weekend, she showed me how she ‘stamp her feet’.

She was holding on the the bed frame doing her usual round of cruising, and when we reached the part “stamp your feet”, she lifted one of her feet up, and stamped her foot. I sang the whole song, and she stamped her feet every time we reached the phrase with the action.

We were so pleased with her, and cheered and lifted her up to praise her. She was pleased with herself too, smiling her cheeky grin.

Now, every time when I sing her the song, she will follow the action phrase and do the action. Sometimes she’s a bit slow, and I have to wait for her a second or two, and repeat the phrase, or tell her “Zara, wave bye bye la”, or “Zara, give mummy five”, and she’ll carry out the action after the reminder.

These few days, she also started mastering opening and closing her hands while we sing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”. She’s trying to imitate the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” action as well, but I guess that will take a while.

Of all the Baby Einstein DVDs that I bought for her, she likes the Old Mc Donald one the most, and only the bit where the song was sung.

She enjoys children songs a lot, and especially like it if there’s some action bits which she can contribute. Sometimes, she sings too, but I can’t make out what she’s singing. She’ll be ‘aaaaah…. mm baaaa.”, then she’ll open and close her hands, and I guess she’s probably singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

Mummies Can’t Be Sick

August 7, 2005 at 7:56 pm

A bad cough crept into my system on Friday, followed with over all body ache. Yesterday, when we sent of Tuyam to the airport, it got worse. I started having a bad headache.

What timing! Here I was sending off my domestic helper cum baby sitter for her 1 month vacation, and the fever, cough virus eagerly came for a visit.

Without a maid, we couldn’t really care for Zara. I got weaker. I continued to nurse her (which I’m not sure if it was such a good idea under such condition), and tried to just watch over her while lying on the bed. Daddy, although is a good play mate, isn’t such a great child carer. We sent an SOS to mum in law. She agreed to help out and would stay a night at our place.

For the rest of the weekends, I laid in bed all the time with a very bad fever, and was vomiting out anything that I ate.

Mum in law was the one caring for Zara for the 2 days, but Zara was fretting a lot. She preferred mummy. Anytime when she was changed in the room, Zara would reach for me. After a feed, she would want to stay for a while near me, leaning her head on my chest, lying next to me playing with my fingers or my pendant.

I dare not give her kisses, worry that I may pass the virus to her, but couldn’t help giving her some cuddles and hugs.

You can’t be sick being a mum, the baby needs you, and nobody can replace you. This is even more true if you are still nursing the baby.

I was glad, I got better at night. Still weak, but my headache and vomiting had stopped. I didn’t know then that the week was going to be a long one…..

Night time ritual

August 6, 2005 at 10:55 am

Her night time ritual consists of changing, playing with her toileteries, trying to climb down of the bed, cruising. Mummy or daddy always have to be near by to watch over her, just in case she falls.

Too excited to sleep

August 5, 2005 at 3:14 pm

Zara has learnt how to crawl, stand up (supported), cruise around furniture, stand and sit herself up within these last 2 weeks.

I think her own achievement has excited herself.

She has been sleeping quite promptly at 9:30pm the last few weeks. After I changed her to her pajamas, she would lie down to nurse, then drift off to sleep; or worse case, she would lie in bed with me, and after a few songs and some patting, she would fall asleep. Her usual routine is 10hrs of sleep in the night, and she takes 2 naps which total up to 2 to 3hrs.

But this week, after we’d come back home, she’s still wide awake, even though I know she’s very tired (since her nap time remain the same, and she is physically more active now). After nursing, she would want to get back down on the ground, do more cruising, practice more standing herself up.

She wouldn’t stop, even if I turned off the lights, and tell her it’s time for bed. She would toss and turn and sit up, and toss and turn and sit up. A few times, to calm her excited self down, I have to lay her on my chest with her tummy against mine, and her head on my chest; or I carry her in my arms and rock her to sleep, that way she’ll drift to sleep in 5mins or so.

We have also raised the bars of her cot as she’s now able to stand herself up. This is what she does now in the morning at 6am when she wants to come over to our bed to nurse, she’ll stand herself up, hanging on to the bars facing my direction, and shouts for me “Aaah.. Eerr” until I come to her.

This is her still up and alert at 11pm wanting to practice more cruising.

Journey to work

August 4, 2005 at 6:10 pm

Zara leaves the house together with me in the morning, and I drop her off in Jenny’s place (before) or Karen’s place (now) together with Tuyam. The journey takes about 25mins (smooth traffic) to 45mins (bad traffic). Here’s she, on a typical day.

Getting into the car, she’s all excited and happy.

Songs and games keep her going.. but not for long

Starts to put thumb in the mouth, indicating she’s tired

Sucking her thumb (she always covers her face either with her own hand or with a piece of muslin cloth/hanky) to sleep.

Oral Hygiene

August 2, 2005 at 4:37 pm

The Pigeon Trainer Toothbrush set is a really good buy, with 3 brushes for different stages. We got Zara a set, and she’s currently using the Step 1 brush, it comes with a safety shield which prevents choking.

When we first introduced the tooth brush to her, she bit on it like a teething toy. She didn’t mind us moving the brush around for her, and sometimes she’ll hold it herself.

I’d been carrying her while I brush my teeth lately, and now when we give her her tooth brush, she’ll put it in her mouth, and move the ‘brush’ around, probably trying to imitate my brushing.

She’s ‘brushing’ her gums most of the time, and I have to help her with her 4 pearly whites (she’s corporative all the time, allowing me to move the brush around her teeth).

I also rub Weleda Children’s Tooth Gel on her teeth once in the morning and once just before she goes to bed.

Not sure if it’s the daily brushing and the gel, or babies are just like that, but Zara has no morning breath at all. She always smells good in the morning!

Coping with New environment

August 1, 2005 at 3:22 pm

Tuyam is going back to Indonesia for a month starting next week.

Zara instead of going to Jenny Ah Kim’s house, will go to Karen Yee Yee’s house, since Karen has 2 maids who can help to look after her.

We started bringing her over today. She was having a tough time trying to adjust to the new environment and Elizabeth (my sister’s Filipino maid). Tuyam told me Zara didn’t want Elizabeth to handle her at all, sticking closely to Tuyam all the time. Tuyam couldn’t leave Zara(with Elizabeth) to take her shower or to cook, because Zara would cry on top of her voice, and had tears rolling down. A pitiful sight. She refused to let Elizabeth carry her, and turned to face the other side when Elizabeth reached out for her.

In the evening, when she saw me walking into the house, she squealed happily, and grinned, and started to crawl towards me. What else could please me more than this sight after a hard day’s work? I picked her up and gave her a big hug, as she deserves one!

It is going to be tough for her these few days, but she’ll have to cope. I’ll work from Karen’s place the next few weeks until she settles in or Tuyam comes back (whichever is earlier).

Weekend mishap – luckily a small one

July 31, 2005 at 12:17 pm

Daddy made a cup of tea on Saturday night with hot boiling water. Zara as usual got excited when she saw him with the purple glazed mug.

I’d already told him many times not to go near Zara when he’s drinking hot tea, but he’s too distracted by her excitement to take note.

Zara wanted to touch the mug, and he allowed it. Letting her touch the mug, and teaching her the sensation is HOT. “Daddy’s tea is HOT HOT, Zara”. Zara just got more excited. “Zara cannot drink tea yet, but Zara can smell it”, he put the cup near Zara’s nose for a sniff. Zara opened her mouth, and wanted to take a sip.

I have to interupt at this point and carried her away, and told daddy to drink his tea some where else. Once the mug was out of sight, Zara forgot about it, and started looking for other things to play with.

The following morning, when I was dressing Zara up, I spotted she had a blister on her index finger, clearly caused by a burnt. I couldn’t think where else she could have burnt herself besides from the very hot tea mug. There was also red blotch on her nose, I suspected it’s from the steam from the tea.

I showed daddy and he agreed it must have been from the tea mug. In another day and time, I would have kicked up a fuss, but because he seemed sorry and Zara is ok and not complaining, I just told him he should not do this again. I just can’t imagine what would happen if the whole mug of hot tea was spilled on her, especially she has such quick hands nowadays.

Baby, Boo!

July 28, 2005 at 6:21 pm

This seems to be Zara’s most favourite book.

I bought many books for her, and none interest her as much as this one. She really enjoys it each time we read this book to her. She smiles and gets all excited the minute we take the book out, she’ll try to place herself on our lap and then leans back against us, all ready for us to read this to her, she smiles when each page is turned.

Every time, when we reach the page KISS KISS, I LOVE YOU, she just leans forward and kisses the baby photo on that page!! And when we reach the last page with the mirror on, she either leans forward to kiss her own image on the mirror, or she’ll give herself a big smile.

She has never kissed anybody or anything before until we started reading this book to her (well, opening her wet mouth touching our faces or the floor don’t count as kissing), she just learnt how to kiss from this book.

We found out that she’ll kiss anything that looks like a baby (e.g. a doll which is made to look like a baby) or photos of babies in books, magazines, even paintings of babies or little children. When we thrust our faces forward and ask her for a kiss, she’ll push our faces away with her little hand, and look the other way round.

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