Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Car Seat Part 4

Well, The Little Girl got upgraded to this car seat booster somewhat "prematurely" when she hit her "I want to be just like you" milestone, meaning she wants to have car seat belts like the adults and not the 5 point harness of her Maxi Cosi Axiss. She grows up too fast!
To be be fair, she was tall and heavy enough, and had understood the need to stay belted in during car trips, not to undo the buckles unless we do it for her, etc. So much explanation from The Other Half and I, so much adorable head nodding from The Little Girl.
So far, so good. This Combi Buon Junior has been on many return trips to the playschool, shopping malls, parks etc. without much drama on a good day.

Car Seat Part 3

When The Little Girl turned 9 months old and was too big for her rear facing Maxi Cosi Cabriofix, we upgraded her to this wonderful car seat.
IMHO, the 90 degrees turn feature is the sole deciding factor for my purchase. It saves my back when lifting The Little Girl in and out of her car seat, and on days when she was busy having a terrible twos tantrum/meltdown, being able to see her face to face to belt her in safely helped cut down soothing time especially at hot and humid shopping mall car parks (have you any idea how strongly she can protest/cry/kick/twist/turn all at the same time?!).

In fact, we all love it so much, we got another Maxi Cosi Axiss in red cover for the other car.
Honestly, this Maxi Cosi Axiss seat is so kind on our backs that when we got our rental car for use in Yorkshire, UK, we got a brand new piece in total black cover to fix into the rental car. At the end of our holiday, we used this seat to replace the old Britax her cousins had been using. Tilts easily, rotates smoothly, and conforms with international standard for safety (but for some reason not in New South Wales, Australia - we asked for this particular car seat on another holiday and were denied!).
My conclusion: This is 100% a keeper for us to hand-down to The Little Bean!

Pregnancy Distractions

I find ways to distract myself when going through an especially tough bout of nausea and vomiting, when I happen to be home. One of the ways to easily distract myself is to watch TV for an hour or so when I am not busy with The Little Girl.
During my first pregnancy, I watched and enjoyed re-watching series and programmes like The Sopranos, Prison Break, Life, Castle and Hayao Miyazaki animated movies. Well, The Little Girl turns out to be quite impatient, hot tempered, sometimes an escape artist and cute all within her special personality.
So people (including my ob-gyn) tell me not to compare pregnancies as each one is true, save for the nausea and vomiting part in my case!
This second time round, I seem to have been hit by the K-Drama fever in terms of distraction entertainment choice. I have enjoyed and still enjoy drama series such as Seoyeong, My Daughter, Ohlala Couple, Love My Love TV Novella and Big. Now I pray The Little Bean will not be melodramatic and tearful but sweet, polite and beautiful as some of the characters on screen.
How do you distract/entertain yourself during pregnancy? Do share! 
Sunday, 23 December 2012

Second Pregnancy: Tandem Nursing

Breast is best, inarguably.
Formula milk is not poison either but it did scare me a lot (recall horrific, tainted, toxic, harmful and deadly ones from China as seen in news?).
When I was pregnant with The Little Girl back in 2009/10, I used to pray to Allah for her rezeki, for constant and stable breastmilk supply, my patience in enduring the journey and challenges as a new nursing mother, guidance to come from the right and informed sources, unconditional support from The Other Half and to remove unforeseen obstacles.
(I suspect you must be thinking by now that Hampshire Mummy prays long, detailed prayers!)
This time, I pray the same. Add an extra caveat.
I pray for the ability to tandem nurse, as well as rezeki for both The Little Girl and The Little Bean.
I recently did a simple research online and read some real experience of mothers who tandem nurse successfully - and my conclusion is that I will need a lot of stamina to maneuvre a toddler and a newborn, develop stronger arms, find more comfortable and bigger armchair or daybed for nursing, drink even more longan and red date tea, limit the toddler to bedtime feeds only, find new ways to distract the toddler in the unfortunate event that tandem nursing is not working out, who goes first when etc. Sounds like "circus management" to me already.
However, the encouraging conclusion shared by most tandem nursing mothers is this: The mother-children-sibling bonding is precious.
That, to me, is important in building family rapport (read: teamwork).
At this point, due to lack of first hand experience, I am honestly quite intimidated. That is not a good vibe to start with so I must arm myself with more knowledge and mentally fortify myself.
The only good start to tandem nursing so far is nursing during pregnancy. The Little Girl is beginning to show concern for my comfort when nursing her, adjusting her posture so as to avoid hurting me or The Little Bean and gently caressing my lower abdomen so as to "sayang adik". Precious!

My ob-gyn is aware of my nursing during pregnancy and has prescribed Pramilet, Nerogain PB and folic acid to cope with the increased demand on my petite body.
So, do wish me all the best and keep me in your prayers too as I embark on this somewhat magical journey. I will be needing all the support and well wishes!
Insya Allah, He answers prayers.

Happy Dong Zhi, Blessed Christmas & Happy 2013!

We would like to wish all our friends and readers a very (belated) Happy Dong Zhi celebrated on 21 December, and a joyous blessed Christmas this 25 December.
Happy holidays, travel safely and may your holidays be filled with much love and beautiful memories.
Have a wonderful 2013 too!

Second Pregnancy: Showing Earlier

So yes, I am at Week 13, and already showing.
Science explains this as stretched out abdominal walls muscles, being lax from previous pregnancy, and hence not able to hide any abdominal distention, bloating or constipation.
So all that bulge is not baby but my fat/parts inside? Haha. Sad, but true.
My pants are now maternity pants, my size 8 tops make the middle section "bulge" suggesting pregnancy but here is the thing: I am clinging on to my tent-y size 8 tops for as long as possible before upgrading to drab looking maternity tops.
You see, hormones have a way of altering my taste in colour and patterns so I am going to buy only once this settles down a bit. Everything I see on the racks at the shop and photos online right now are just not attractive. While this is good for the bank account and wallet, it is a little stressful on the laundry basket, ironing rack and wardrobe because I rotate on just a few tops.
In comparison, during my first pregnancy, I did not show until 20 weeks along. So for the first 20 weeks, I just looked like I ate too much and had a "pouch". Oh boy, was I well prepared when it came to maternity clothing! First time nerves...I reckon.
When will I go shopping again this time? Hmmh.

Second Pregnancy: Vivid Dreams

I used to get emotionally disturbing dreams in my first pregnancy. Emotionally disturbing because the recurring common theme was this: abandonment. 
Now that this is my second pregnancy at week 13, I am praying for better dreams. Or at least those that do not leave me in tears in my sleep.
So far, it is manageable. I am usually awakened by cough (from the thick saliva accumulation at the throat), full bladder, backache, or occasional cramps.
More often than not, The Little Girl wakes me up in the middle of my dreams, requesting for midnight snack on the boobs.  
Experience tells me that the more advance the pregnancy, the more vivid the dreams get. I will keep an eye on this and update as we go along this gestation journey!

An update: Taking wuduq before sleeping, reciting some Surah and prayers help in peaceful slumber.

Second Pregnancy: Cravings List

Favourite food = food that I enjoy eating, can live without and not obsess over if not available.
That is not the focus of this post.
Craving = food that I cannot stop thinking about even after eating something else, cannot sleep because I think about how to obtain it for the next meal if possible, often comes from a particular kitchen or restaurant, gather enough courage to ask The Other Half or The Grandparents to buy them for me if I am too sickly to drive and buy it myself.
So here you go, my top 3 cravings:
1. Sambal udang with petai, served with steaming warm white rice, from Madam Kwan's. Similar to the first pregnancy food craving. You'd think all that chilli and spice will make me sick?
Nope! Side note: Halal certificate and sticker is visible on site at the restaurant, but the menu lists beer (alcoholic drink) as available. What is up with that? Does anyone know how JAKIM allows this somewhat confusing status? Tawakal, lah! I doubt the kitchen has alcohol because the drinks counter is separate, and the beer they sell is bottled, not draught. Hmmh...still!

2. Organic Har Po Ley Cha Rice, from Simple Life at Suria KLCC or Oasis Mid Valley Megamall. Full of full grain brown rice, barley, variety of vegetables and tofu. A lunch staple. Totally the opposite of #1 above in terms of taste and texture. A close replacement would be bibimbap without the raw egg.

3. Pomelo, from MBG/Cold Storage/Isetan. Grown in Ipoh Tambun variety is my favourite, being sweeter and juicier. Yums! Milder than oranges and grapefruits, laden with folate and fibres.

What's yours? Do share, especially if they are of the pickles with ice-cream sort *hehe*
Monday, 17 December 2012

Second Pregnancy: Week 5

I saw Dr. Haris Hamzah at Sime Darby Subang Medical Centre on 3 November 2012 for a pregnancy confirmation ultrasound scan. I saw The Little Bean, a gestation sac, measuring 13.7mm. So tiny!
Instead of prescribing Obimin, Dr. Haris Hamzah handed out a slip for Pharmaton Matruelle this time.
As soon as the appointment was over, I went to pick up The Other Half and The Little Girl from Empire Shopping Gallery where I had earlier deposited them to save the Little Girl from boredom of waiting room at the crowded hospital.
We went for lunch at a seafood restaurant near the old Subang Airport. The Little Girl refused to eat much after snacking all morning and I was nauseated from walking under the hot sun to the car after lunch. I guess The Other Half was also "sick" from over-indulgence of butter prawns and stir fried brocolli!
So home we came. Diligently, I popped one table of Pharmaton Matruelle after lunch. Oh,how  I reacted pretty badly to Pharmaton Matruelle! Vomiting a few minutes from swallowing it became a routine I quickly grow to detest. So I skipped Pharmaton Matruelle and went back to popping Obimin. No difference! The body just reacts to such supplements, and I had to choose between keeping my lunch down, or vomiting right after taking my supplements. Eventually, I chose to keep my lunch down, as I was getting dehydrated from vomiting.
Some SOS text messages to an ex-classmate who is now a mother of 2 revealed that perhaps I can try asking for Pramilet, as she had taken it with better staying power compared to the former two. Oh, yes! I will try, and hope it works...
Disclaimer: My experience with Pharmaton Matruelle, Obimin and Pramilet are in no way any endorsement/product discredit but merely stating my personal bodily reaction to each. Please consult your ob-gyn for making informed decision. You deserve the best care and supplements possible.

Update as of Week 16: Pramilet seems to agree with me, and I will continue this supplement.

Second Pregnancy: Week 12

"If this is not your first pregnancy, you might begin to show this week, but just a bit, meaning your clothes might feel snug at the waist. This is because the uterus stretches more easily after your first pregnancy.", excerpt taken from The Complete Illustrated Pregnancy Companion by Robin Elise Weiss with Dr. Marcello Pietrantoni.

Oh, how true! I cannot fit into my usual size 8 pants, and have outgrown the ones with slightly more elastic waistbands too. I had them put away for storage for now. Maybe I will see them again in a year or so.

The good news is that I have located Mothers Club outlet in MidValley Megamall (hurrah- the sale is on!) and bought several pairs of essentials (long black pants, long camel coloured pants, denim pants, cotton shorts for staying at home).

Common features: Cotton, wide pregnancy tummy covers that do not sit on the uterus/fundus, adjustable waistbands, machine washable, some even tumble dry-able, good quality, made in Hong Kong pants. What a lovely find!

The highlight of the beginning of week 12 must be this: We saw Dr. Paul Tay on Friday, 14 December 2012. The Little Bean now measures CRL: 5.55 cm, spot on 12 weeks, 156 heartbeats per minute and was jumping up and down during the ultrasound scan. The Other Half was very pleased to "meet" the baby for the first time.

I was given a Maternal Serum Screening. We are very pleased to find that "Low Risk" marked for Down's, Edward's and Patau's Syndromes.

Note: The Little Girl was at home with The Grandparents who had so kindly babysat so that we could just enjoy the precious moment.

Syukur alhamdulillah! May Allah continue to bless and protect The Little Bean.