Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Sticky Bean's Milestones @ 3 months

Sticky Bean's milestones ain't fantastic given that she's a premature baby and the PD advised us to deduct 1.5 mths off for her developmental progress.
This reminded me of how we were freaking if she could be autistic when she did not start babbling and take an interest in our faces when she's 2 mths old, unlike her cousin, Asher who is 5 days older than her.

So at 3 months, these are the little milestones achieved.

Review on Lamaze toys review on lamaze toy review on lamaze toys review on lamaze toys review on lamaze toys review on lamaze toys review on lamaze toys review on lamaze toys
She finally took an interest in toys! she loves this Lamaze fairy with black and white patterns at the back of her wings and the tiny rattle that produces noise when she attempts to swing her fist at her.

 Looking at her toy intensely and even started babbling to her toy. She loves to talk to this fairy and her interest in this toy lasted only 3 weeks, after which she ignored the Lamaze fairy totally. =____=

Now I know why we should introduce new toys to babies one at a time, they get bored out of it so soon!
But the Lamaze fairy really helps a lot in distracting her and it makes diaper change and the nightly wipe down a breeze for us. She used to hate lying in the cot for wipe down and diaper change and will cry till you are done and picked her up.

And then she starts to take interest in the musical mobile made of 4 little lambs, can't remember the brand but I remembered we bought the cheapest from Kiddy Palace at about $25. A fraction of the price compared to mobiles by tiny love, fisher price etc easily costing $79 and above.

We're so glad that this became her next favorite after she got bored of Ms. Lamaze Fairy. Serves as a good distraction as well, in fact, she loves the mobile so much not only did she attempted to babble to the lambs, she smiled at them as well.

 Looking intently at her tantalizing lambs musical mobile

I also took out her wrist rattle from Lamaze and she seems curious about it for probably 3 days and lost her interest. ZZzz.
The first time I put the wrist rattle on her, she stared at it for a long time and then attempt to lick it. lol.

At 3 months, we decided to open up her fisher price play gym which is a gift from her god ma.

and it works like wonder for her, she loves to lie on the play gym so much, looking and trying to swat at the toys to eventually taking her nap on the play mat.

finally managed to take the time to update the blog, hoping to track her milestones here which I'm sure it will be really useful in future.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Reading Habit Starts Young! @ 3 months

After purchasing 2 books for Baby Ashlene from Books depository, i've decided to pop by the National Library to see if they have baby books for loan in order to save money.
and to my delight, they have tons of selection!
including the black and white books i've been trying to find for ages! gosh should have went to the library before purchasing the books online.

As their colour vision is limited, they can probably only see black and white as well as red @ 3 month plus, hence getting a black and white high contrast book will be great for stimulating young babies.

I found these books and they have plenty of selection still! decided to let baby ashlene try looking at the colourful books with flashes of bright colour polka dots and shapes but she seemed to only take interest in the black and white books.

She really looked as though she's doing some serious reading

and this, Daddy says she looks like ah pek reading newspaper, blowing bubble with her saliva some more.

Finally, she got bored with the book.

Another money saving method! borrow books instead of buying them. If you're worried that the books are filled with germs, I actually cleaned them with dettol at home before passing them to baby ashlene, most of the baby books are hard covered and water proof so it's pretty easy to clean them up.
surprisingly, they are in pretty good condition too!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Sticky Bean's Full Month Celebration

This is quite post dated, Baby Ashlene's full month celebration was held on 26 October 2013. As Sticky Bean arrived prematurely, I didn't have time to plan a nicely themed full month celebration for her. I will make it up for her 1 year old birthday. And yes, I did fulfill my promise. CLICK HERE to check out her 1st Minnie Mouse Birthday Party.

We're like in a rush for the whole day, we didn't even get a chance to take a family photo argh!!! here are the limited shots that we have, also thanks to a friend who took some really pretty pics of ashlene.

DIY Full month banner DIY Full month banner 
 DIY Full month banner  DIY Full month banner  DIY Full DIY  Full month banner
Not wanting to spend unnecessary money on ordering banners just for couple hours of usage, i've diy her banner!

This is pretty simple to do, all you need is a printer at home, purchase some fancy paper and ribbons.
Print the letters on A5 sizes, cut it with fancy patterned scissors (you can buy them at Daiso for just $2), paste it on another fancy paper preferably a colour of contrast from your letters, punch holes and tie them up with ribbons.
It doesn't show very well in the photo but I have pearly pink stock card as the background against cream coloured paper where the letters were printed on.
full month invitation
I've also diy a simple invitation using power point, anyway these days we send invitation via whatsapp so all you need is just a simple image with the relevant information. full month invitation
full month invitation

Catering is from Select catering, had wanted to try Xin Yi Pin cos of their reasonable prices and the complimentary cup cakes which will look lovely at the buffet table but after reading some not-so-good reviews, I've decided to stick to a safer option.
Was deciding between Neo Garden Catering and Select's catering but chose the latter as there're quite a number of feedbacks on Neo Garden's small portion.
Select Catering is high recommended by most and the pricing is reasonable too.

this is the portion for 40 pax.

Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review on Select Catering Review Price is reasonable, serving portion is good as well , we ordered 40pax for 50 guests and there're some leftovers. The drinks are totally not enough though, it's the standard drink dispenser and we only have one of them.
Service is excellent, set up is early as well.

Baby Full Month Door gifts cheap door gifts for baby full month cheap door gifts for baby full month cheap door gifts for baby full month
I'd always feel that the typical full month package as door gifts are pretty expensive for the small portion, even for the most reasonably priced, Sweetest moments, it cost about $6 per pax and all you have is 2 pieces of cakes, 2 ang ku kuehs and a red egg. Most guests find it a hassle to bring the boxes back and will just try to finish it off before heading back. (at least that's what I've been doing). Hence i've purchased a different kind of door gift instead and the prices are very reasonable!
cheap door gifts for baby full month
cheap door gifts for baby full month
I've bought these cutesy towels in a form of sundae cones as door gift and they act as decor to the venue as well. 
The best part is, all these cost me $1.20 each only! you have to purchase at least 50 pcs though.
Get them from  cheap door gifts for baby full month

Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month Celebration cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month Balloon Decoration 
We are lucky to have our aunt who's very into balloon sculpturing these days to decorate the venue for Baby Ashlene's full month. Click HERE to see more of her works
Look at her work:

Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month  Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month
Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month  Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month
 Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month  Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month

Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month  Cheap Balloon Decoration for Baby Full Month

She even prepared balloons for the kids. It became a hit with the kids and they have a variety to choose from.
My aunt provides balloons for parties as well and her prices are really reasonable, it goes as low as $50 for a huge variety of ready-made sculptures and decors - self collection.
Do email me if you would like to have the contact.

And finally some pictures taken on Baby Ashlene's Full Month Celebration

 the woman behind all the balloon works

 Daddy helping with the simple ones..

 Happy Po Po carrying baby ashlene

 Crying for milk milk

 and she gets her milk!

 happy kids with the balloons

Thank you all for attending Baby Ashlene's Full Month Celebration. We did not invite a lot of people as we intend to make it a cosy affair.
Even though we have less than 50 guests, we didn't get to spend enough time with more of our guests and the worst was, we didn't even get to take many photos!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Medela Freestyle Review

this is my first and only pump and i love it so much that i'd think it definitely deserves a review / recommendation from me!! medela freestyle pump review

If you are looking at purchasing an electronic breast pump that costs hundreds of dollars, please please do purchase them early so you can purchase them at the major baby expo fairs and fully maximize your purchase with all the attractive free gifts and lucky dips at expo fairs.
I had wanted to purchase mine in the October baby expo fair, but who knows baby ashlene arrived prematurely at 34 weeks, so we didn't manage to make it to the fair at all and after trying to use the medela swing single pump, i gave up totally, rushed out to kiddy palace during the first week of confinement to get the freestyle. medela freestyle pump review

Initially i was contemplating between freestyle or pump in style since i've heard plenty of positive reviews on how strong the suction is for pump in style, just that it's gona be an eol model soon and the clearance price is at $599, $100 difference from Freestyle retailing at $699 (they are perpetually on promo price).
Since Pump in Style gona be an eol model soon, i'd worry i'll have problems getting parts replaced many years later for our #2 hence i decided to go for Freestyle instead. medela freestyle pump review

The suction power is good in my opinion, as compared to hearing complains from peers about other models such as harmony or electric swing which is super duper loud and takes forever to empty their breasts. It takes me 30 minutes maximum to pump each time medela freestyle pump review

Here's my personal ratings:

suction power: very good 4/5 (maybe not as strong as Pump in style but good enough for me)
Portability: very good 5/5 light weight and easy to carry around
ease of use: very good 5/5 comes with hands free strap which is a life saviour
Sound: very low 5/5 you can hardly hear the pumping sound

Super love the fact that it's battery operated and comes with the hands free strap. So i can pump and walk around the house doing chores or even have my meals while pumping away, even my family members were impressed and amazed by how portable and flexible my pump is.
This is extremely important, before i explored using the battery function, i was confined to one area to do my pumping and i got so bored of detest each pumping session.
Till i discovered the ease of use for the battery, my pumping sessions never felt the same ever again!
medela freestyle pump review

with the hands free strap, i can even pump and pat baby ashlene to sleep at the same time! super time saver!!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Joolz Stroller Review

A friend lent us the Joolz stroller. This 'atas' stroller is retailed at $1798 Price from, one of the super premium brands of strollers available.

In terms of quality, the quality is really good, it makes pushing around and maneuvering a breeze, with suspension, it is stable and smooth for the baby.
Baby ashlene seems to enjoy sleeping in this stroller even if we have to walk through a bumpy road.
Joolz stroller review

Joolz stroller review
On the downside, the stroller is really bulky and makes moving around a challenge, like getting into a lift, we'd take up most of the space in the lift, the huge wheels can also be a challenge when entering or exiting lifts with narrow doors and trying to make a sharp turn without running the huge rear wheels over some poor chap's feet.

Also this carry cot means you probably can only use it for a couple of months till your baby learns to sit up so the product life for this carry cot is relatively short, say 4 mths maximum?
After which you have to purchase another carrier, they called it "Push Chair" that allow the baby to be in a sit up position and prices starts from $148
Joolz stroller review

Also there isn't any safety harness for the carry cot, we risk baby ashlene sliding up and down in the Joolz stroller when going up or down slope or even attempting to cross the kerb in the middle of roads or pavements,. 

Keeping of the joolz stroller is another challenge, it's a no way one person can carry the baby and fix up or dismantle the stroller at the same time.
you need both hands to remove the carry cot from its frame and even then, you need some skills to remove it.

If you were to ask us if we will purchase the joolz stroller or if it's worth the price, sorry I'd say it's a no-go. the inconveniences of using this stroller definitely supercedes its suspension, stability and easy maneuvering (in a huge space) 
Joolz stroller review

Breastfeeding journey: Maximizing space in Freezing breast milk

I've been wanting to blog more often and to post more of Sticky Bean's progress but gosh why do i find it so difficult to find time to do it.

Anyway back to Freezing breast milk, our freezer is almost full! of course, this is the before image, i guess i didn't organize it to fully maximize space..., notice how the milk bags look like tau huey zhui packaging also? (soya bean milk)

here's how it looks after re organizing it and maximizing space with the use of trays. Big difference eh? One mummy I know purchase her trays from daiso and it seemed a perfect fit.

and I've also gotten a tip from the same mummy to fully express out as much air as possible from the milk bag so the frozen milk bag will be as compact as possible.
i've tried and it works!! here's the huge difference.

Another space saving tip!!