Dunstan baby language

IMG_6800Mummy, I’m not a happy camper! Milk.. NOW!

Sophie can be quite the screamer when she wails and for a new mom, it can be quite bewildering trying to decipher what she wants. I mean at this point in time, it should be really simple fulfilling her needs for it’s either hunger, diaper change and/or sleep. But honestly, when you have done all of the above checks and she’s still screaming murder, that’s when your confidence as a mom crumbles and crushes.

The sis shared that it’s a phase that she will outgrow for she’s still a baby and in this great big world of ours, she just finding her footing and her voice. Since she’s not able to talk yet, the only way she can really communicate is really through crying. She also asked me to look up the Dustan baby language which provides insights on the different cries that newborns make.

This was what I found online which I thought was really helpful. I ain’t no baby whisperer overnight but at least, I’m perking up my ears and trying my darnest to make out the little tones in her cries so that I can meet her needs faster before it turns into inconsolable wails.

The party favours…

This is what cabin fever does to me… I ended up shopping for party favours even though the party that we threw for Sophie’s first month was only for family. Even then, there were only 4 kids at the event. Haha… Well, I wanted to make a nice memory out of the little one’s first month and I thought what better way then to give out cute party favours to the kiddos and friends.

In came DivineFavourz Mall (thanks to a rec by Jieying) with these personalised party packs. I was seriously bored one day and with like 5 days to put together the family-do, I turned the FB page of DivineFavourz Mall to get some inspiration. Because Sophie is born in the year of the horse, so the characters from My Little Pony were perfect! I ordered the party pack with customised sack and some goodies to be put inside. The service from DivineFavourz Mall was pretty awesome! Quick turnaround and everything was communicated using Facebook Messenger to sort out the design and the wording to be printed on the goodies.

IMG_6819So pleased with the final product which will make a great keepsake for Sophie and all of Sophie’s related items. Haha!

IMG_6824If you are wondering what’s in the bag, these are the simple goodies that are placed within the goody bag. :)

So for Sophie’s party, I simply dressed up the goody packs by placing the packs in a pink gift box (recycled) and placed the pony toppers that I had stocked up previously. Makes for a nice decorative piece on the table and I’m pleased with how they fit into her theme. :)

 

Newborn shoot

There’s something precious about newborn shoots, one I wasn’t sure we were going to do for a friend mentioned that it can be quite challenging trying to manage a newborn plus some of the poses can be quite traumatizing for the infant and may cause added stress to the parents present at the shoot. With those thoughts in mind, I kinda hesitated signing up for a newborn shoot with Sophie. I thought perhaps a month later might be better, she will be a bit bigger and perhaps easier to manage.

Well, turned out I was wrong. The Man’s friend got us a newborn shoot with Hart at Tomato Photo as a gift. Ideally, the newborn shoot should take place between 5-10 days of the newborn’s life. I’ve seen the amazing work that Hart has done for newborn, I was beyond thrilled with the gift. So on day 7, we gamely brought Sophie out for her very first shoot.

It was all very professionally done. Hart emailed us a list of things we should do prior to the shoot. As photography for newborns can be quite tricky, we were told to give Sophie a full feed before the shoot so as to ensure that things move smoothly. Well, we tried. On the morning of the shoot, I nursed Sophie and managed to express some breast-milk which we happily brought along thinking it would be sufficient. We also prayed that Sophie would be on her best behaviour and the photo-shoot would go on without a hitch so we can be home within 1 hour.

Well, the best laid plans never go along as planned. When we arrived, Hart carried Sophie and within minutes, he told us that Sophie isn’t full and that she probably needs to be fed. The Man and I looked at each other and went ‘But we just fed her!’  The expressed breast milk wasn’t sufficient and lil Miss Sophie was just fussing at this point in time. Thankfully, Hart was super patient and he showed me to his studio where I could nurse Sophie till she was a little more full.

Then the cameras started rolling. The props came out with Hart taking over Sophie from then on while the Man and I just sat back to admire the work that he had done. Of course, we’ve been warned that the baby would be in the weirdest and somewhat contorted pose that might frighten/stress the parents. But seeing how Hart managed Sophie from the onset, we were put completely at ease. In the end, Hart dished out useful parenting times to first-time fumbling parents like us which we totally appreciated.

During the entire shoot, Hart was also very patient and allowed us to feed Sophie on demand. The shoot took longer than 2 hours but we were never pressured by the time. In fact, Hart stressed that in order for the best shots to be captured, he is willing to let the shoot go over 4 hours if needed. Thankfully for us, we managed to wrap things up in about 3 hours, because by then Sophie was getting tired and us, frazzled. There were also 2 incidents when Sophie did some naughty business on the props and the Man, but Hart just shrugged it off and told us, this happens a lot with newborns. Phew!

Here are some of the shots that were taken by the masterful photographer:

IMG_6502

IMG_6504My fave shots of Sophie with her sweet smile

IMG_6508

IMG_6513And this is the winning shot for us! Hart really captured Sophie’s smile at the right moment! We couldn’t help but purchase this shot on a canvas and now this is the picture that has replaced the painting in our room. :)

If you are ever contemplating on doing a newborn shoot, I would definitely recommend Hart at Tomato Photo for his professionalism plus the amazing photos he managed to capture of the newborn.

As we look back on these pictures, Sophie has really changed in terms of her features from a newborn so I’m really glad we did this to capture her babyness as an infant in her first few days of life.

A whole new ballgame..

Breast-feeding .. that is.

Many have shared that we will save a lot of money from breast-feeding, well, I don’t find that to be true.  Almost close to a month into breast-feeding and we’ve already invested in a new breast-pump plus other what-not equipment.

The hand-me-down that I had gotten from my cousin wasn’t working as well and the motor gave off a funny noise when I was frantically trying to pump out whatever remnants of milk left in the boobies. Was going to trade-in the old one for a spanking new one, but the Man decided to just head down to the store to get a new set for me since it was an emergency case that we needed to keep the milk supply flowing. So that’s a hefty one-time investment for a machine to ensure supply of the breast-milk. One that we decided for our sanity to just pay for.

Next, we had to invest in all these different spare parts for the machinery, namely the breast-shields. I realised that the ones that were handed down to me didn’t fit me as well, so I sent my cousin to get the right ones for me. Having just a pair of these shields meant that I had to constantly wash, sterilise and wait for them to dry before the next use. I got tired of waiting so I went out to buy another set. With 2 pairs of these shields now, I am able to rotate them in between pumping. Thanks to a tip from Sary, I’ve also gone to buy stuff that I needed to bottle-feed Sophie or spare-parts needed for breast-pumping from The Little Thinkies.

Instead of storing the breast-milk into bags, I managed to get these glass bottles from my cousin which will take up space in my freezer but when it comes to heating up the milk, it’s a lot easier to manage then plastic storage bags. So those were savings on my part but I did go out there to purchase the storage bags in the end for its much easier to store them in the freezer compartment plus the bags have indication of how much milk they is in the bag, so for people who want to feed S, this is a lot easier for them to see the amount she needs.

Last but not least, milk supply doesn’t come naturally for most, at least not for me. To kick-start the flow, we had to run out there to buy fenugreek pills and whatever we could get our hands on to start and increase the supply. So, all these would add to the cost as well.

So there you have it, while breast-milk comes from the mum and is for free, it doesn’t come without hard work and investment behind it. Hard work? Yup, the feeding, the pumping and the constant need to drink water during breast-feeding to ensure that you don’t get dehydrated and to also ensure a steady flow of breast-milk.

Any tips of b-feeding? If yes, please send them along my way. :)

Protect yourself with Konk!

With the rising surge of dengue cases in Singapore of late, it’s time to be vigilant and not complacent.

Our LifeStyle Shop is offering a 5% discount on all purchases of KONK from now till 31 July 2014. So if you want a fast, effective and natural way in dealing with the mozzies, KONK may just be what you need! Take advantage of this special deal! To enjoy this deal, simply provide the discount code ‘joanne’ when you check out your KONK purchases.

Read all about my experience with KONK® that’s exclusively retailing at Our LifeStyle Shop:

Note : As an ambassador of Our Lifestyle Shop, lady J’s musings received a year’s supply of  KONK® I Flying Insect Killer product on a monthly basis. No additional monetary rewards were given and all views expressed are purely of my own.

Regaining sanity…

Remember confinement? That will end in approximately one week’s time. While I am happy that I no longer have to eat food that’s either pork, steamed fish doused with wine and loads of ginger to warm the body or drink up loads of longan/ red date tea, another wave of worries have enveloped me.

You see, we hired a confinement nanny to care for me after delivery. There are pros and cons in selecting a confinement nanny to care for the mom. Some of the reasons for doing so were so that my meals can be cooked and prepared by the confinement nanny, she will take care of Sophie while I rest and also do the graveyard feedings so that I can sleep through the night. The latter didn’t really happen for I’m up pumping through the night but I guess it beats having to physically nurse Sophie for now. The nanny also helps to prepare my daily baths with medicated packs of herbs specially boiled.

We contemplated on extending her for another month but the Man assured me that we will be able to handle Sophie when she’s gone. After all, sooner or later, we will have to cope with managing Sophie on our own. I guess that’s true, with so many people in the house, I’m sure we will get round to looking after her. But then with the recent turn of events, I wonder if it will be the case.

I wonder if I am able to cope with caring for her full-time despite having the help. I wonder if I can cope with the feeds throughout the night? Will Sophie and I be disturbing the Man while he needs his sleep to get through work? Will things at home come to a standstill? Will I be able to calm Sophie down when she goes into one of her wails leaving me all vulnerable. Will I even be able to go out and steal some time to be on my own? Maybe it’s just me wanting to do everything since everyone else at home have their duties to perform. Perhaps it’s also me being a first time mom, wanting not to impose on anyone since Sophie is my child and I want to be the primary care-giver for now before going back to work.

Yes, I know I worry too much. Sometime I wonder if I have bitten off more than I have chewed. Friends and dear ones tell me that it does get easier so I’m really crossing my fingers and saying my prayers hoping that it will be the case.