All posts tagged: series

Brielle Turns One

I’ve never considered myself to be a motherly person by nature, by any measure. Before having a child, if you’d asked me whether I like kids, I’d say I like them, enough. If you ask me the same question today, I’d tell you no different. But what’s changed is my newfound empathy I have for parents, especially those with babies and toddlers. I admit I used to be one of those people who silently prays they never have to sit close by babies or toddlers on the plane, dreading the possibilities of having to tolerate the relentless and tormenting cycle of crying, screaming, and chair-kicking. I guess I still pray so. But knowing that the crying, screaming, and chair-kicking toddler could be mine, I absolutely feel for parents who are trying their best to keep things under control (and their sanity). As I watch B grow everyday, it’s a bittersweet reality for me. As she learns about the world and becomes more and more independent, she will need less and less of me. A time …

10 Surprising Things About Being A New Mom

When Brielle goes down for a nap and I have a moment to myself, I would sometimes think about life before she came along. There wasn’t a specific point in time when we decided to have kids; we just knew we didn’t want to wait too long. The excitement of finding out I was pregnant was unlike any other. And while the warm feeling of carrying a little human inside me never left, pregnancy and childbirth are not without their own woes. But after actually giving birth and discovering there’s a tiny person who’s convinced she’s a koala and constantly needs to tag on to her mama, I realized pregnancy was in fact the easy part. From the day this baby popped out of me, I am forever a mother. No matter how old she or I turn. Without a doubt, becoming a mom has been the biggest thing that’s happened in my life and I’ve been reflecting on what has surprised me the most. 1. It’s more exhausting than I ever imagined. Everyone always …

16 Things Every New Parent Needs

Months before Brielle’s birth, we had frequented many baby shops. From the start, I was cautious not to go overboard and to buy only the essentials, with the exception of too-cute-to-pass-up socks, mittens, onesies, dresses, headbands, and actually anything borderline cute. Which was most everything. Obviously, I bended. Most times I couldn’t resist and always justified every non-essential purchase with the thought that this was our first. But among the things we have for Brielle, I’ve rounded up sixteen of ones I use on an everyday or almost everyday basis and have proven to work well for us. Here’s a list of the items new parents may find useful. 1. Medela Freestyle Pump This double-pump has truly been my best friend, only second to the baby. While it’s considerably pricey compared to other pumps, it’s totally worth it since I’ve gotten so much use out of it day in day out. 2. PumpEase Pumping Bra To go with the pump, I use this wrap-around bra so I can pump hands-free, easily move about and get …

What’s in My Hospital Bag

We’re just 12 days away from baby’s due date. At 38 weeks and 2 days today, she could decide to pop at any time now. Whoa! Things are starting to get very real. The sleepless nights, toilet runs, and worries aside, I’m feeling ecstatic about welcoming baby to this world, and to our growing little family. Spending time in the nursery and putting together baby’s things makes me feel close to baby. Feeling baby’s movements inside of me keeps me entertained and lets me know baby is well. It’s funny that I always used to feel cold and get the chills, but now it’s the opposite. And I have this tiny human inside of me to thank for keeping me warm. Now, onto serious business. I know it may be premature, but I’m not an advocate of anything last-minute—unless it’s something yummy like ice cream or crepes. So to avoid havoc, I’m packing our hospital bag so it’s ready to grab to go with us on the big day. Here’s a list of things (which I’ve …

Pregnancy Post: One-Month Countdown

When we found out we were expecting back in January, the idea that we would be welcoming a child into our family felt a long ways away. I was focused on me, my well-being, and my newly pregnant situation. Now looking back, the first trimester is a distant memory—a blurry few months of nausea, lethargy, and unproductivity, all looped in a cycle of a confused jetlag. And now that it’s less than a month away from baby’s birth, I’m all about baby and everything I can think of that she’ll need. So far I’ve gained 10 kilograms, while baby is measured at 2.8, which according to the doctor is whopper! And that worries me a whole lot. I’ve always known I wanted to go the natural route and have been watching (for the most part) my food intake to avoid baby from gaining too much. Clearly this little one is a big eater. And now hearing and reading about how labor pain is pretty high up there on the pain index, trumping breaking one’s bones …

Pregnancy Post: Monthly Update – July

It shouldn’t come as a surprise but I’m amazed by how kind strangers are to pregnant women. Just last week I was waiting for R to pull up at Ikea and haul our shopping, when a father of three with his wife offered me their seat on the bench after he’d asked his daughters to stand on the side. He offered me the. entire. bench. I thanked him but didn’t take the seat because I knew R would drive by any moment then. And by the looks of me he clearly thought I needed the whole bench – ha! R joked that once baby is born I should strap a pillow around my belly so we’d continue benefitting from special treatment. Speaking of looks, it’s insane how big my bump has grown this third trimester! And it’s even crazier how more and more active baby is getting. While baby’s smooth dance moves are my daily entertainment, they are keeping me up at night (and waking me up from my morning sleep). And in general I’ve …

Pregnancy Post: Monthly Update – May

This month has seen the most drastic changes in the pregnancy so far. My belly is growing rapidly, along with my appetite. At home we eat healthy, home cooked meals. And while I’ve taken the doctor’s advice to slow down the weight gain, it wasn’t easy to resist the ice cream, scones, fries, and noodles during our travels to Australia. For the first time in my life I avoided going near the scale. We’re a week away from the next doctor’s visit, and hopefully my routine workout is paying off. Woes aside, my highlight this month has got to be feeling baby’s first kicks! At week 21, they were subtle and sporadic. Now, they come at me very eager, day and night. I would even feel baby dashing from my left, then to my right, top then bottom belly. R would feel them too, and would quietly tell baby to move gently in my defense. The first night we arrived in Sydney we watched fireworks from our hotel overlooking Darling Harbour, and R and I …

Seven Things

/two comrades appreciating each other’s company/ It’s been so refreshing to wake up to the cold, for a change. Every morning I try to be up earlier than everyone else so I could take a walk and enjoy the beautiful outdoors and the company of galloping dogs and singing birds before heading out for the day. My favorite part of our trip: animal-watching and taking in the lush and bucolic surroundings and fresh air. Sometimes the simplest things are truly the best. And while photographs don’t do the sceneries justice, I tried to capture them the best way I could. /St. Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney/ /encounter with mooing cows/ /pancake and pie with berries/ /fragrant lemon garden/ /Luna and Milo/ /black swans/

Seven Things

/scones with jam and double cream at Kallista Tea Rooms/ We arrived in Melbourne Monday morning—my first trip ever to Australia! Greeted by what back then I would consider mild fall weather, the sudden cold got me quivering under my oversized knit sweater. Nevertheless, the temperature change was refreshing. And while Melbourne was mostly covered in clouds and some rain, our short road trip to Sydney through Albury and Canberra was met with lots of sunshine and blue skies. In between our incessant eating, I was content to be surrounded by the beautiful scenery, birds, flowers, and family and friends. We were told winter came a little late this year so we were lucky to get plenty of view of leaves turning yellow and red, something I miss very much. We travel around the country for ten days and I’m looking forward to be out and about. /green tea ice cream x dark chocolate waffle cone/ /the prettiest brioche french toast with edible flowers at Tosaria/ /my growing baby bump/ /parrot-watching in Canberra/ /Sunday matinée …

Seven Things

/fresh watermelon/ Many things excite me. I find that each week, there’s always at least one thing everyday that puts a smile on my face. And it’s good to remember them. So here are seven things that are making me happy this week. /view from our balcony/ /mashed avocado snack/ /frozen grapes—have you tried freezing grapes??/ /packing for Australia/ /home-baked peanut butter banana oat blender muffins/ /first baby kicks!!!/