Thursday, 17 August 2017

Because they are cute

Is it me or do parents get cutified by their kids?

Sunday evening, I couldn't help just lying there to stare at Kai as he watched YouTube. Such a perfect oval face. Such lovely 白里透红 skin. Such round though small cheeks. Such delicate eyebrows for a boy.


And Yang too. Such a perfect round face with chubby cheeks. Such a cute pouty mouth. One morning, very early morning, I came in after settling Yu to stare at my sleeping boy, hands behind his head and breathing ever so gently.

See again?

Even Yu on one of the most difficult nights could snatch my heart away. He was refusing to sleep at 2 or 3 am, and I was so frustrated and needed to pee so much that I dumped him on Sito. On my way in, the boy put his little head on my shoulder and rub his face into me, as if to tell me that he was tired but needed just that little more sayang-ing...

Cannot stop staring at this boy

And of course the moment they turn rogue, they aren't cute anymore!

Or maybe they still are...

Kids 1 vs. Mama 0.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Happy National Day and 10 months to Yu!

This National Day, we stayed in to watch the Parade with a simple dinner. I used to do that growing up - for some years, Mother cooked yummy fried rice and made teh to go with it :) It was fun watching the planes on TV and then hear and see one from our window. Kai even tried to sing the Anthem! Not sure how much the boys took in though but it was a start. I know Kai was looking out for Chan Mali Chan but we didn't hear it before we went in to settle for the evening.

Mum got them matching outfits which they wore to school yesterday. Today, Kai and Yang wore their Merlion shirts while the rest of us just wore red, and we were not the only family doing that :)

Raffles, Farquhar and Crawfurd?! Hoho!

Posing at the Botanic Gardens MRT station while transiting to Downtown Line

We went to Hillion for lunch and to check out the construction. It looks almost ready! We cannot wait for TOP! But Kai said the child care centre looked ugly, hoho! I just hope they get a place there!

And today, Yu also turns 10 months :) And he also fell off the bed for the third time in as many months :( This time, I dozed off and found him on Sito's side, lying on his side and crying :(

He started scratching his head a lot in the past couple of weeks. Dr Google has no definite answer. But it is likely due to tiredness. Tonight, he slept through his brothers' transit into the room. Hope he continues to improve... Sleep aside, more on him in pictures!

I love how he held on to the bay window and tried to stoop down to reach for toys. Most times, he ended up kneeling. I don't remember his brothers doing that!

He can get up and down very easily now

And he crawls super well

Practising his fine motor skills on Gerber puffs - when his brothers hadn't got to them first!

Very much more interactive - he laughed whenever I pretended to eat his food

And when I sang, he clapped! So sweet, haha! He can do a lot with his hands. I taught him to wave a big hi and wave bye. Today, when Dad said bye to him, he paused and raised his hand to wave bye - I was so happy!

We think he entered a new stage during his nebulisation weekend - he's no longer content with staying in the carrier; he must be walked around! And today, I found that he seemed to prefer being carried free hand - that sucks, hoho!

He is really good at calling me :) Sometimes he says nai nai too - not the person but the milk! Am thinking of introducing him to formula soon coz I'm running low on my freezer stash and I'm paranoid that he wouldn't take formula! This is one picky boy - he has two teeth now but eats very little. Hope he can eat/drink more soon. Stay chubby!

Monday, 7 August 2017

Three boys sleeping in their room

Took a picture of the kids' room on Saturday coz I was thinking of letting Yu sleep in there again. But it was a short Saturday morning coz we went to ICA to collect their passports, and N was going to Batam that evening so I forgot about it.

Also a last shot of the playmat

Yes, the good old playmat is pretty much dead. The button holding the roof together broke free of one of the arches a few weeks ago. N stitched it back but it came off again. And over the weekend, I found that one of the hooks for the toys was broken, leaving a sharp edge, but the hook itself could not be removed from the arch. Took it out of the kids' room just now, in case Yu decided to put his mouth to it!

So just now, instead of nursing Yu in my bed, I went to his bed. He looked a little lost, like, why are we here? But it was a good day - he woke at 3 pm so was tired by dinner time. I nursed him and he dozed off. I was surprised that I was able to put him down on the bed with just one try. And then I got to spend some time with his brothers!

Watched them play in my room

First, I showed them the camera footage and explained to them that if Yu cried, I would go over while they stayed here to play, and that when we went over later, they had to be quiet. Then I watched them play a while.

And then I got greedy and decided to shower - save some time! :p But this Yang refused to let me go! After many no's, he finally let me shower but with him watching *.* Halfway through, he slammed the door and left, argh...

We had lots of fun today. First, we read the latest popular book from Chengzhu, of a goat and a sheep crossing a river. Then we re-enacted the scene at the foot of the bed, which makes a nice passageway acting like a bridge.

And then it was time for massage. I had to go get the little stingray toy from the other room. Instead of letting them draw or find the stingray, I turned my back to them and threw it back. Yang got it! So massage massage massage... And there was a fair bit of horsing around before I settled them in bed to watch an old video of Yang. They loved it! Kai thought Yang was so cute while Yang thought he looked like Yu - I told him it was coz they're brothers :)

After a few more videos of themselves, we cuddled in bed for a while, playing round and round the garden. And just as we hid under the duvet, somehow Yang looked out and saw Papa! I didn't even hear the door open!

By then it was time for bed so we went over. To keep them quiet, especially Yang, I decided to stay with them until Yang slept. But Yu woke and cried for mama so I nursed him. Yang fell asleep during that short time. After settling Yu, I chatted with Kai a little before leaving.

But before I could open up my laptop, Yu woke again! Managed to settle him quickly and I've been here since. Sito just said that he couldn't remember the last time we had our laptops in bed, with the light on. And neither could I! I wonder how long this would last - not in matters of days but hours haha! Will probably bring Yu back if I can't settle him easily later. But to have our room back while we're awake is really great :)

Just checked the camera and look! Haha!

Sunday, 6 August 2017

The brothers sliding down, weeee!

It has been an uneventful week - good! But they've each hit a milestone, or "milestone"...

Kai took a shower on his own this evening, supervised by me. Took a bit of nagging for him to cover every spot with soap. When I checked, only the top of his head was a little soapy - almost there! But this boy is like his father when it comes to towelling off - his standard for "dry" is very different from mine!

Yang is his cute self as usual, even when he was crying outside his Chengzhu class. Yes, for some inexplicable reason, he started crying these two weeks! I told him 可爱没有用,还是得进去!And at Mum's place, he pulled a chair over and told me he's cute *.*

Yu had his first slide yesterday - on me! I tried to let him slide but his clothes weren't facilitative so I slid with him instead :) And today, he managed to slide down the little slide at Chengzhu!

1, 2, 3 - go!

First babies

I told Kai about our first baby just now.

Kai was saying that he didn't like Yang coz he was a "dumb dumb" and he liked Yu coz he was so cute, cuter than Yang. And he wanted to wake at night to quietly carry Yang outside!

Fast forward a little. Yang was outside with Sito while I was in bed with Kai. Told him he's special as my first baby. And somehow he asked something like, "am I your first baby?" Well, since he asked... I said there was a baby before him but baby didn't have a heartbeat. He asked where baby was. I said heaven. He didn't understand of course. I had to explain that baby had died and so went to heaven.

"Did he walk there?" He asked, using his fingers to climb up imaginary stairs. So cute :)

I told him I didn't even know whether it was a he or a she, baby being so tiny. And we launched into a lengthy comparison of sizes, baby to thumb, baby to little toe...

He also asked whether he was the first baby then. Yes, he's the first baby I held :)

Towards the end, I said that I was very sad when baby was no more and that all my babies were precious. After a little pause, he said something like, "Ok, since you say that, I won't carry Yang out."

I don't think he totally got it but the last line was enough :)

Reposting this photo for the look they exchanged

Friday, 4 August 2017

A little break

After many weeks of working late into the night and Yu's recent illness, I was so tired that I wasn't focusing my eyesight - unless I was reading, I usually saw things in a blur coz even keeping my eyes open was taking effort. And this happened:

mf: I'm not feeling too good. Think I'm ill...
Kai: You need to rest... Go sleep!
mf: But Yu always wakes up at night.. Maybe you could help me..? *what was I thinking?!* No, you should sleep too..
Kai: But when Yu wakes, he wants your nai nai *hand on my chest* I cannot help...

The next day...
Kai: How do you feel today?

I was wondering if I might be ill enough to take MC today but nope. Then last night, I saw an email that a key meeting next week was postponed so I decided to take leave today since there would be time to work on my item next week. I happened to have an action learning group discussion thing today that I didn't really want to miss so I took half day.

And it was good!

I wanted to leave at noon to pump but I thought I would stay until another colleague got there just to say hi but the pizza also arrived so they asked me to stay. I ended up having a rather nice chat with them before coming home to pump.

I didn't quite plan what I wanted to do but starting with a massage sounded tempting so that was what I did. Went to Natureland downstairs and was lucky to get a slot on the spot! The room is small and dark but sufficient. There's a sign in broken English that basically says they're a proper spa :p The paper underwear was actually comfortable! It might even be more comfortable than the 15yo underwear that I wore today, haha!

Got a PRC lady who wasn't smiling but who had a friendly and soothing voice when she spoke, which wasn't a lot, which was what I wanted. And she was strong. The hour was focused on my head, back and legs. The head included the ears - very interesting! And painful coz she was strong, but not unbearable. In fact, I like it; I thought it helped my shoulders.

The style is more TCM than Swedish so even my bones were hurting and making noise. Plus, she was so strong. Ya, I know I said it already but she was really strong and she was small! She said it might hurt for a couple more days and yes, I'm feeling my back as I type. Before I forget, her name is Sydney.

My next stop was to refuel at Each A Cup :p I hadn't decided where next but I vaguely knew that it was probably Vivocity rather than Jurong or Bishan. Anyway, it was easy - just sat in the train until it wouldn't go anymore!

I was torn between Daiso and Giant... In the end I checked out swimwear at Giant first. All black, bleah. Bought underwear for Kai instead; his bum is growing...! Then it was Daiso. After getting what I wanted, I just wandered the aisles randomly. It felt soooo good! All the little treasures. All the ideas. I can't wait to move house! Also popped into a few stores here and there, like Uniqlo but nothing caught my fancy. Bought some food stuff from Giant and the food hall, and came home to pump before going to get some bread for the older boys' morning tea tomorrow.

I realise it was some time since I spent time on myself like this. No fixed plans. Just walk and see things. When it was time to fetch the kids this evening, I felt that I could handle it! Need more of such breaks :)

Monday, 31 July 2017

How's your day?

Wednesday, 5 July was significant.

We were in the midst of the usual bedtime routine when out of the sudden, Kai asked me how my day was.

I've been asking about his day - in very specific ways like, what did you have for lunch today - for some time, and I got limited responses. But now that he's asking me, he would talk about his day as well. It's wonderful!

There were times we both forgot of course. But this boy was so cute. He told me in the morning that he forgot to ask about my day the previous night :)

I'm imagining the day when five of us are sitting around a table exchanging little stories of our days :)

Sunday, 30 July 2017

The kids don't get tired

As expected, it was my turn to be down after Yu. Nothing serious but I was so tired yesterday that I couldn't wake up after Yu woke up from his afternoon nap, and I fell asleep before 9.30 pm last night. Today, I feel much better. Hope it stays that way...

So Yu had a review on Wednesday and was taken off the nebuliser, phew! I really hate that. He sometimes smiled at the beginning but within seconds he would be wailing. He's better now, less coughing, less phlegm. But I'm aiming for zero phlegm so the meds continue...

Yang took this photo - poor Yu

Starting to sleep better

Kai started carrying Yu this week...

Kai was strong enough to carry even Yang so I only had to make sure he put him down properly. But Yang tried to carry Yu today and that was so scary!!

Love this shot of them sharing a look :)

But the poor long-suffering Papa was crushed!! And so was I at times. They took the word horsing around too literally....

Yu: "What is 'go, horsie, go'??"

Kai climbed up on his own but couldn't get down

Yang paddled really hard at the fitness corner

We started going back to the playground downstairs. We used to get lots of mosquito bites there but it was ok the past couple of Saturdays. And it was a lot less walking compared to if we had gone to the "new" playground across the road coz we would walk to Star Vista from there too whereas we would take the train from the playground downstairs.

Was this his first time in a kiddy ride?? Mama can't remember! Ah well, third child :p

We had a play date today with Yang's friend, H. All my boys had/have a classmate called H! H1 wanted to watch a movie with only Kai; H2 named her doll after Yang - hoho!! H2 eats raw carrots and handed them around freely. Only Yu bit. Maybe we'll have one kid who eats healthy? *hopeful*

The friends jumping in her brother's cot

I really wonder where they get all their energy from. Coz I need some of that!! How can they jump around whole day and then take a long time to go to bed? This week was quite bad - Kai and Yang were sleeping past 9 pm all week. And Yang especially, kept coming out. A couple of times, Kai fell asleep before Yang! Even Yu could stay awake for five hours and still struggle when I stuffed the pacifier in. And Yang and Yu are still waking at night, especially Yu of course.

I had a very late Friday night, which perhaps contributed to the very tired Saturday. By the time I got in bed at past 1 am, I realised that Yang could come in within the hour. It was so depressing. And indeed, Yu woke me at 3+ and I found Yang sleeping like a log on my legs *.* It's so sweet to have Yang there but it makes it really difficult for me to tend to Yu, and if Yu doesn't sleep, I don't sleep.

But one good thing about Yang coming in is that he gets more interaction with Yu. Some mornings, they were both awake at 5 or 6+, and they would play with each other. Twice this week, I saw Yang put the pacifier into Yu's mouth - they looked so happy!!

It's only 9.30 pm but I'm tired already. I'm now waiting for a work email to come in so that I can have a look at it. Hope I can settle it within 10 minutes! Despite the two cups of coffee at the playdate, I really want to get in bed now!

Thursday, 27 July 2017

I forgot how fast I could walk in heels

Very fast. In kitten heels la...

Took out an old pair of open-toe heels to wear this week. My aim is to wear them out so that I can clear my shoe cabinet... But in doing so, I felt GOOD! Gosh, how long has it been since I last wore heels??

My colleagues have been commending me on my appearance lately. And it all started with my new haircut on Yang's birthday - I came home looking like the good old mf plus some flesh all round...

mf at 37, with some life-changing lipstick

So nice right? Taken the day after the haircut. Of course, I never look like that again coz I don't style my hair with my hairdryer! Most days, I'd be happy if I only remembered to put on some hair oil to tame flyaways. After all, I no longer have rebonded hair so it can get quite messy...

The hair and the lipstick are the two recent little things that are pulling me away from my usual mama look. You can tell from the waves in my hair that I've been tying my hair for the longest time. Letting it down these days feels really good - when the weather is kind..

The lipstick was a surprise though - it didn't make my lips any drier than expected, as was usual of previous lipsticks. This is one of five or six sample size Clinique Chubby Sticks that PC gave me over last Christmas. Now I'm very tempted to buy the full size when I'm done with the sample.

And all that gua sha seemed to have helped. I have observant colleagues who stared at my thighs underneath Uniqlo tights!

I'm so happy to be slowly reverting to the good old mf :)

Besides my looks, I'm also trying to be more green. I used to be very green. Now, it's hard. And my children are contributing to food waste every day, not to mention electricity and water. My living room bench is full of toys that will eventually end up in a landfill. So I need to do something. I started packing my mixed rice without the plastic bag. I was thinking of going with my own container next but it's tough deciding between plastic and water for cleaning up... I was also wondering if I could use my own cup for bubble tea, and decided that it's good enough that I boycott LiHo for its cover.

Work-wise, I'm back to long hours. Not as bad as 2008 but it's bad for a mama of three who doesn't get enough sleep during sleeping hours. Tonight, I decided to stop going through item after item. Work can never end but I grow old every minute. Let me spend some time writing here. It's kind of therapeutic :)

Sunday, 23 July 2017

The brothers two by two

It's been a while since I updated on brotherly activities. So here goes!

Samurais on Racial Harmony Day!

Actually, they looked more like tofu workers without the swords..! And the red man on the front isn't even a samurai; it's a sarubobo coz Mum they all got three sets of these during their trip to Takayama. Yu's is a baby version. Hope to wear it one day...

The two of them also came back with henna tattoos on their hands. Very nice! But they faded easily. The next day, there was a charity flea in school and their teacher drew more henna tattoos on their hands. Love it :)

Kai doing rock-climbing!

Yang doing his monkey thing above the slide

Oh but wait - Yu had a go at the playground too, thanks to Papa!

We set off quite early yesterday, after their afternoon nap, coz we wanted to go to J Cube to take the excavator rides. But there's now a very distracting sand pit, meant as a waiting area for kids but they were so taken with it that Kai only did one excavator ride while Yang did both the excavator and the ball pick-up thing. I used up the last token :p

So happy with sand

Me :p

Happily looking out of the window on the train from Jurong East

Last night, while I was busy with Yu, Yang opened a drawer in the living room and discovered a stash of toys - I've been hiding them right under their nose for some time! Ah well... But at least they were treating them like new toys now. In fact, they didn't even play with the new toys they got from the charity flea yesterday!

For once, toys kept them very occupied after their shower

Today marks the end of a month-long birthday celebration for four in the family - Yang, Ah Yee, Kai, Jiejie. Both boys had some chocolate cake after quite a long break. They drank quite a bit of water so I hope no cough comes round tmr... Though Kai was already coughing a bit..

Now this is familiar...

"Xiao GeGe, wake up for chocolate cake!

I must really dig out the one with Yang disturbing Kai!! It's so fun to watch their interactions. At this point, it's usually two by two. May take quite a while before the three of them can play together as three.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Two days of child MC

I was at a media event on Wednesday morning when I got two text messages from the teacher and the principal - Yu measured 39.5 deg! But I couldn't leave so I asked them to help sponge him. By the time I was done, there was no sound from the school so I happily continued to work. Ya, I know - bad mama! But babies have fevers right? :p

Wanted to go pick him up at 3 pm after finishing up loose ends from the morning but got a call before 2 pm from the teacher that Yu was hitting 41 deg! I packed up and cabbed down.

The poor boy was so unhappy! :( And yes, he was hot - 39.5 deg in school just before we left. He was so hot that his cheeks turned pink! And he seemed quite lethargic and took a few naps under 30 min. I wanted to bring him to the PD but the clinic closes every Wednesday afternoon. So I fed him ibuprofen and just monitored him.

It was quite obvious when the fever subsided - he became happier! But very needy. If I carried him, he wouldn't let N take him away. I had to put him on the floor to play and move away. Then when he saw me, he whined. Poor baby but Mama had to work...

Yu took a dose of paracetamol at dinner time, without dinner, and went to bed. He wasn't warm the whole night. Sent him to school for a while so I could pack a few things. Got an appointment at 11.10 am so went to pick him up to go see the PD - just wanted to get this bout of illness cleared up.

He was quite happy on the bus, looking around

"I like going to the doctor's coz there are toys..." 

PD suspected the flu and ordered a test. He cried so hard during the swab *.* It was a short 20-30 min wait, during which he fell asleep. The test was negative. But since he has been coughing for so long, he gave him antibiotics and nebuliser on top of the usual symptomatic stuff - for phlegm, running nose, fever.

I had never seen a nebuliser before. Thought it looked like my pump with its cord and stuff :p Maybe it's the name - Medel or something. Kai had something similar at 6-7 months but it was a puff into some cylinder. This was something else. But both had the same result - plenty of crying and screaming!!

The nurse did a demo since I was a noob. The movements woke him. After the initial cries, Yu was just shouting. She said it would take 7-8 minutes. Gosh.

Had lunch and bought some snacks before going home. He dozed off along the way but woke just before we got home. As expected, it was tough at home. His fever returned while we were out so he was unhappy. It took a while for the medicine to kick in. I was so tired that I took a quick nap. When I woke, he just fell asleep. But it was time for the nebuliser!

Playing with the gym ball - spot the nebuliser behind!

But I took some time to look for a plug coz the machine has a two-pin plug. By the time I set things up, he was up. I tried to administer the thing myself but he was too strong. Sorry, baby, gotta pin you down :(

Happy when it was over

I was with Kai and Yang when Sito came home. Yu tends to wake when Sito comes home - daddy's boy? :) So he woke. And since he was up, I gave him the nebuliser again. Kai and Yang wanted to watch, and they were so cute - they asked me to stop it already coz I was burning him or he was crying! Such empathy :)

Kept Yu at home the next day to continue the four-hourly nebulisation though he was no longer running a temperature. We started the day at 6.30 am - with nebulisation :( I think he has been traumatised :(

It's hard to keep the boy at home for long coz he gets restless. He likes going out. When he didn't want to let Sito carry him this morning, I asked Sito to go touch the baby carrier. Yu smiled and reached out for him, hoho!

So thankful that he napped for just over an hour in the morning! Managed to cut his nails. So sad he woke just before nebulisation time. I was hoping I could do it to him while he was sleeping. He was so angry after that that he punched me! And he was so sad as well and refused to let go of me. So conflicted, my boy :p Really is 最爱的人伤我最深 :p

Playing with balls - love this expression

Silly boy was hitting his head with the ball

Went to Vivocity for lunch. It was crowded and I wasn't too hungry so I just bought chicken to eat on the way to Daiso :p Bought a flask to hold barley so we don't end up with eight cups in the fridge every Wednesday. And a non-slip mat in preparation for Yu's shower. That was my entire Daiso shopping list but I left the shop $12 poorer... Hmmm...

Got back in time for his second nap. Actually way ahead of time. Took a while before he went down. I wanted to sleep too but it was almost time for his nebulisation so I waited... Yet he woke very soon! So we traumatised him once more :( I couldn't take it anymore and let N play with him for 45 min while I took nap. Left the house for tea right after my nap. Yu was so happy to see me and/or the carrier!

My coffee, my cake and his bread

He rejected the break after the first cube, and played with the box instead

"The cover is more fun!"

And then he suddenly decided he would eat! But he dropped more cubes on the floor than in his mouth. I encouraged him by clapping for every successful feed. He loves to clap too!

Chomping while seated like a baby beng

I was very happy that we spent some 40 min in Costa. I really enjoyed my tea and watching this boy at the same time :)

Bumped into colleagues who were in the area for a meeting and chatted a while before spending some time and money in Watsons. Then it was time to go back for a shower!

Decided to take out the non-slip mat to try but this boy wouldn't stand! So he sat on the mat and played with the water on the floor! Ah well... I gave him a quick shower and got myself a bit wet, but it wasn't too bad. Nursed him a little and left to pick up his brothers. Set him to bed after yet another nebulisation, sighs...

And this morning, we tortured him another time before going back to the PD for a review. His wheezing had improved yeah! But coz he still has lots of phlegm, PD wanted him to continue the nebulisation for four more days!!! At a reduced dosage of three instead of four times a day. Sighs... I'm reducing that to twice a day from Monday so that he can go to school.

Poor baby Yu, hope you are rid of the cough and phlegm asap!

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

The absolute cuteness of the last baby

Yu doesn't sleep well. (What's new?) I usually hold him in my arms until he sleeps. Then I'll carry him over to my bed and lower him down, still snug in my arms. When both of us hit the bed, we'll be lying next to each other, my right arm under his neck. His head is resting on his left on my arm, and his left cheek will be fatter and rounder than his right. When I'm not too tired, I'll not remove my arm immediately. I'll watch him :)

He is so cute :)

He's cute when he's smiling

He's cute when he's crying/whining

He's cute when he's expressionless

He's cute when he's playing

He's cute when he's eating

He's cute even when he's pooping! (Sorry no picture :p)

But of course, he's cutest when he's sleeping :p
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