Feeding Time!

htm-55991-1We started E on tasting food when she was about 5 month old. It is however recommended to start at 6 month old but because E showed a lot of interest in our food so I started letting her taste first. I did not do much research on preparation of food hence for the 1st few tasting sessions, I bought food jars from Mothercare. I read that we should start with fruit first then vegetables.

Hence my first jar I bought was Country Apple Puree. 1 jar was considered A LOT as I only gave her a spoonful to taste each time. The food jar could not be left opened too long hence I disposed it after 2 or 3 days the most.

Babies however do have the tongue-thrust reflex which pushes food out of their mouth. This is a reflex that ensures they do not choke. It does not reflect that they dislike the food. It is also recommended that they are able to sit up and have a strong neck control, this will ensure they the chances of choking is minimal. As I tried to feed E abit by abit, and most of it gets pushed out of her mouth, the only thing I told myself was “KEEP TRYING!” it is true! When you first introduce solids, it is very important to have patience and keep trying. It will definitely get messy so be prepared for that. Do note that until they reach 1 year old, their main meals still come from Breastmilk/Formula Milk. So do not stress if they do not feed on solids very much.

 

Good bib
Prior to starting on solids, I bought a lot of cloth bibs to help with the excessive drooling due to teething. These are great for soaking up the drool and they look good! But when it come to solid feeding, these do not work well. The puree gets smeared on the bib and E’s hands will be messed up
be-neat-sea-amo with all the puree which she spit out. I was very much into Ju-Ju-Be and hence I decided to try the Be Neat. It is a waterproof, washable bib with magnetic snap closure. It also reversible and has a little pocket to catch food droppings. I also love that it can hang on my fridge so I can grab and go when I need to feed her. It is not cheap but it has saved me a lot of times when E vomits merlion style and the vomit is caught in the pocket. Phew. Saves me from cleaning the floor and highchair. So far I own 4 Be Neats and Im loving it!

Ju-Ju-Be is available on local retailers :
Pupsik Studio, Maternity Exchange, Tiny Tree

Spoon
Tommee Tippee Explora Feeding Spoon 7m+ Orang PinkIt is also important to select a suitable spoon for your little one. When we first started, I used a very shallow spoon I bought from Mothercare. It allows me to feed her bit by bit and she won’t choke. However as she grew older, and able to take bigger spoonfuls, this spoon has now retired! So please do select the right size spoon for your little one! We are currently using Tommee Tippee spoons (SGD6.90) which is easy to grip!

 

 

Bowl
I read about Calibowl and I wanted to try. I was impressed with the fact that it has a anti slip base and patent pending lip around the top of the bowl which is designed at an angle which pushes food onto your utensil avoiding any spillage and overflows. This helps me to scoop up food with 1 hand and less mess. I also intend to use this bowl when E learns to self-feed. I also bought the suction base version so she won’t be able to throw the bowl off the high chair when the time comes for her to self-feed! HaHa. Other than the Calibowl, I also used a Grinder bowl when I started E on porridge. This helped to cool down the porridge while the grinder portion helped to further mash the porridge so she can swallow better . Since then I have also bought Combi bowl with handle for her tea-time yogurt treat as it is easy to hold. Recently I also bought the Skip Hop bowl which is very colourful and attractive, she has been into Owls lately and so I bought the Owl design. This helps in making her finish her food because she can see the Owl face only after she finish all her food!

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Skip Hop Owl Bowl

Grinder Bowl

Grinder Bowl

Meals
After researching abit more about meals, I stopped food jars, I read that some are made out of mostly water. I wanted E to have nutritious home cooked food and so I started reading up more about the type of food she should eat at each stage of her life.

 

It is important to note what are the type of food you can feed at each stage as some food items may cause allergy such as eggs, so be sure to do the 3-day test and do be cautious especially if parents do have allergy to certain food. I also read about making our own soup stock so I started boiling and freezing soup stock for use when I cook her porridge. It is indeed very tasty! I typically use a double boiler to cook her porridge as I don’t want to boil it direct as the nutrients will be lost. This will however take longer time but it ensures the nutrients are locked in so well, anything for my babygirl. Even if it means staying up till 10 or 11pm to cook and prepare! I usually cook about 2 day’s worth of meals and then I will freeze it. When it is time to eat, my helper will heat up the quantity needed over the stove. This also relieves her of the stress to cook as she is usually alone with my baby at home. Ohhh woes of a full time working mom, I really wish I could cook her fresh meals everyday!

Tupperware Turbo Chopper

Tools

I have a standard set of tools I use when cooking to help in preparation of ingredients. One for sure I definitely must have is the Tupperware Turbo Chopper. This helps me to chop up the ingredients such as carrots into smaller pieces so it cooks faster when I double boil. It also ensures the taste goes right into the porridge and it is so flavourful! It is so effortless to use it too!

Buy Turbo Chopper Here

 

 

Snacks


When E started to be able to sit on high chair when we dined out, I always bring out a placemat (Silicone Cloudy Placemat SGD26.90) and some snacks for her. I started with teething rusks which are usually hard biscuits to soothe tender gums. It also usually come in a stick form so it is easy for imagesbabies to grasp and chew. But I realised this caused rashes around E’s mouth so I stopped. I started feeding her Baby Bites which she loves! Slowly I also introduced fruits such as blueberry and grapes. These 2 fruits can cause choking so it is recommended to cut into smaller pieces for them until they can handle it on their own. I also fed yogurt and I started with baby yogurt such as Petit Miam which I bought from NTUC finest.

 Buy PlaceMat Here

 

Water
When is a good time to start feeding water? We started when she started on solids, but in limited quantity. I tried sippy cups which are quite similar to drinking from milk bottles but she didn’t quite like it, then 1 fine day, we thought of just trying straw cup. We mimicked the action of sucking the water from the straw, and then suddenly she did it! But she took up a big gulp of water so of course she choked abit. But after that with abit of practise she is able to handle the straw herself. Hurray! Only after being a mother that you realised a straw cup is not just a straw cup. There are so many different straw cups! After some research, I am now using anti-leak and weighted straw with removable handles. These are important for me because I wanted her to be able to handle the cup by herself which means even if she held it upside down, the water should not leak out and because she may tilt it at an angle, with a weighted straw, she will still be able to suck up the water. Removable handles are great for when I need to bring her cup out, it will not add to the bulk. I am now using Lollacup which is a super cute design and with the mini brush which comes with it, it is easy to wash! I also bought Innobaby Straw Cup which is very good but the handles are built in so I mostly use this at home.

Psst, Lollacup is available at Mothercare and Innobaby is available at Motherswork!

Innobaby Straw Cup

Lollacup

 

Highchair

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It is important to select a suitable high chair. Some of the criteria we looked at was that it has to be space saving, solid material so that there wouldn’t be a chance where she will be in the high chair and for some reason it collapses. It is a plus point if it can be used for a long time. After deliberation, we selected the Stokke Tripp Trapp in a nice shade of walnut which matches our home theme. The seat and foot plate is also adjustable as and when they grow. This chair is also meant for the little one to join us at the big dining table! However, most of the accessories are optional and hence sold separately. We purchased the baby set and tray for now, but as she grows, we can remove them so it is like a regular chair for her. There is also an option to purchase the harness to keep the baby in! We haven’t bought this for now but we should soon. I love this chair, it is very stable and the legs does not take up much space compared to the Ikea one. It is solid wood and I love the fact there is a foot plate so baby gets to rest their feet. For some reason I do not like the high chairs where baby feets are dangling. When adult eat their meals, our feet are also nicely grounded on the floor right?

E is now 9 months old and we are feeding 2 solid meals of porridge a day. I will be writing on my recipes so far, I have also started making ikan bilis powder! That will be in my next few posts!

Tata for now!

 

 

We are back!

im-back-1024x693

It has been a whirlwind of a time. Sorry we hadnt been posting for a while. E is now 9 months 10 days old!

Just for the records:

*6 teeth (4 on top and 2 below)

* Eating 2 meals of solids a day

* Can crawl

* Can stand with support

* Can walk with her Puku Walker

* Says mamamama, papapapa, ahhhh puuuuuu.

It has been very exciting as we watch her grow and hit her milestones and she surprises us every other day. Mama has changed a job just so that i can reach home earlier to play with E before her bed time. Talking bout bed time, it has all screwed up. Gone were the days where she slept at 8.30pm till the next morning. Probably due to teething, probably due to growth spruts, she now sleep at about 10plus to the next morning, sometimes with abit of crying in the middle of the night.

Because she has started solids, i have been cooking her food diligently so she get her nutritious meals. She is NOT on baby led weaning although that was a method i wanted to embark on. But for a full time working mom and unsupportive caregivers, it was a no go.  I will blog more about the food i have cooked for her so far in the next few blog posts.

As she has also started attempted to walk, i have upgraded her pram and soft sole shoes to something hardier so she gets more support when stepping on the ground. This calls for another blog post too!

We have also explored some activities together, such as play gyms and swim classes and indoor playgrounds. This is something i would like to pen down some day.

One last thing i would like to dedicate a blog post to is baby wearing. It is so awesome that even Papa Toh is embracing it so much.

Do continue to read our blog as we update over the next few days/weeks!

xoxo

Mama

Breastfeeding

Day 18

Its been 18 days since my baby was born. These 18 days, i am supposed to be resting and building back my energy and strength, especially from a c sec. Thank god for hubs and mom who have been around to take care of baby while i try to “rest”. but alas, thats not the case, because i am… theoretically supposed to be breastfeeding and establishing the milk supply. of course people say this is the hardest in the 1st month because thats when your body dont know how much milk is needed and hence produce as much. Only in the following months that the supply gets regulated.

So that explains the excessive supply i got. Maybe also cos of the boob size, which translates into many milk ducts, the supply was crazy. And because i am unable to latch, i exclusively pump, which means im literally stuck to my pump every 2 hours or so for 30 mins. And then i need to clean up and wash and sterilise the parts to prepare for next pump. Where did my “rest” time go? all to the pump. i dont even spend time with my baby! is this fair to me or her?

Over the days, i started to get tired and weary and perhaps dragged the pump time abit longer. well, its not intentional but i started to get engorged. BAD BAD engorgement. only mummies will know the meaning of engorgement. usually it will be just soreness, tenderness, boob getting hard, pain and just have to massage and pump out. But the worst i got was shooting pain, my whole boob was rock hard, it was swollen and red, just a light touch and i wanna cry, the armpit and arm was also getting hot,i was getting feverish and i was shivering even under the blanket in an non-aircon room. i thought to myself  “is this what death feels like?” . Seriously it was really unbearable. no matter what i did,… hot compress.. cold compress.. cold cabbage,.. hot showers… nothing helped.

i am all about ready to give up breastfeeding. of course alot of emotions running inside. did i try my best? is this all my pain threshold could take? could i not try harder? am i letting my baby down?

please do not doubt me when i say its really mummy’s guilt. all mummies hope to provide their baby the best. i was all ready to control my diet to continue breastfeeding even tho i really needed a beer now and then.

we went to a GP on sunday in desperate measure to get medication to stop the throbbing pain from the boobs. he did not want to prescribe lactation suppression medication initially but maybe i look as if i am in depression, he eventually did. But after googling, the medication did not seem very safe. In fact it was different from what some of my friends took when they wanted to stop breastfeeding too.

So since we were going to see the PD on Mon, we decided to pop by my gynae to get a prescription for the safer medicine. Not cheap but anything for my sanity. Actually the pd also said that nowadays the formula is made quite smilar to breastmilk so no problem taking formula milk as well. i just dont understand why people are so adamant about giving only breastmilk. I mean people make their own choices right.

It is a sign, because i needed to pump badly and when we finally found a nursing room, my pump decided to die a natural death and could not be switch on. sigh. Everything is just not to my advantage.

So anyway the decision was made to stop with hubs support. I took the first dose at 7pm on 23 March 2015.

It is still emotional for me when i look at my pump parts, when i look at the fridge and see the supply i built up is slowly decreasing.. soon we need to defrost the ones in the freezer… soon there will be no more breastmilk. It is depressing when i see the things we bought to support breastfeeding (ie breast pads, nipple cream, breast shields, extra flanges, extra valves), In fact we bought a smaller portable pump so i can use when we go out or when i return to work. It hasnt even arrived and i decided to give up breastfeeding.

I dont even know why i must explain to people why we made this decision. All the shit i get from people about not trying hard enough and that breastfeeding/breastmilk is good for baby etc. Its not as if we dont know. But its not all about the baby right? Mama is going into depression. Rather than resting or being stuck to the pump,i rather be spending time cuddling with my baby. The day that was the worst, i didnt even see my baby the whole day because i was in the room trying to unclog the ducts.

I been crying every day and in pain. Who can understand this? Who are you to question why i decide to give up bfeeding. It is not an easy decision for me as well. Of course i hope to provide my baby breastmilk. But at the expense of my sanity and opportunity cost of time spent with my baby?

I think things would have been different if the experience of breastfeeding was easier, and if the primary caregiver for my baby is my mom. But the primary caregiver when i return to work will be my helper and i definitey dont want my baby to be too close to her, and so i wanna spend allt he time i have now with my baby. i wanna see my baby milestones, i wanna be able to comfort her when she cries, i want her to know i am mama and im always here. Im not a mama stuck to the pump!

Even today, i feel quite sad and emo when i was feeding her formula milk. I feel emo when i see the colour of her poo changed. (feeding BM and formula, the poo colour will differ).

But i guess in the long run, this will benefit baby, me and even hubs.

so do not judge us. do not question us. this is our decision.

to mummies who are thinking of the same route as i did, i support you.

to mummies who manage to breastfeed successfully, i salute you.

to mummies who feed formula from the start, i respect you.