Friday, December 31, 2010

We're Hurt!

We are currently facing some obstacles with the lactation.  Little Spanish Pinay has bitten me while she was nursing a couple of days ago and has left La Boobie hurt and bruised.  It's really painful right now to nurse her on my left boob because of the small wound I got from the biting.  I am trying not to nurse her on the left boob as often, I can't stand the pain.  The result is that I get too much milk on the left boob that it hurts... I have to pump out milk from it so I can give it to her in a feeding bottle.  The problem is my little rascal doesn't want anything less than the boobie.  So, there are times that I can't hep but nurse her on the left boobie and suck up the pain.  I tried to use a nipple protector but since it is silicon, LSP played with it and bit! I think I my stomach went upside down with the pain.  So no, nipple protector is not an option.  

4 teeth are becoming 4 big challenges for me.  I fear that one day I will completely cede.  I really pray that La Boobie recovers soon.  It is true that she has stopped biting me these days.  She seemed to learn that mami is hurt with the action and it's not good.  But then the wound is still fresh and with her 2 new upper front teeth, the nipple kind of brushes off with the teeth while she nurse... and that's really uncomfortable! Plus since it is also bruised, the sucking motion is almost unbearable.  

I do hope we recover soon.... just imagining weaning her earlier than what I have planned pains me even more than LSP's biting.


Monday, December 27, 2010

2 + 2 = 4 And A Bigger Ouch

The tooth fairy has beaten Santa to sending her gift for Little Spanish Pinay. Two more front teeth is peeping out of her upper gums. That explains why these past few nights, she's been waking up from time to time bothered by something. She's even more clingy as well during the day and easily gets cranky. But now, those pearly white twins are already out so she's feeling a lot better and was oh so ready for noche buena!!

As of me, I've got a couple of gifts too from the bag fairy... They're black but not pretty at all and they're annoyingly hanging below my eyes!!!

Oh and I have another bonus... when LSP gets too excited or wants to experiment how loud I can yell? She'd bite me and I'd see stars doing merry-go-round on my head. Ouch!!!!

4 front teeth at 8 months
Merry Christmas!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Santa Baby

May the home of each family be warmed with love for one another glory for the child who was born in a manger and became our savior.

and don't forget to smile!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

8 Months

4 months to go and she's turning 1 year old...just 4 months! Seriously? I swear it feels like she was just 4 months yesterday. I can't keep up with time, see just 2 more days and before Christmas and still incomplete with gifts! If I continue to be like this, I'll definitely be left behind with 2010!

What I can't afford is to be left behind by Little Spanish Pinay's super fast development. Everyday is like a big step for her towards toddlerhood! I feel like I am not yet ready for toddlerhood.  I want to be there for her to support her and cheer her and console her with her frustrations. It's super exciting for us yet I feel a little bit anxious. She seems to be too much in a hurry to grow! One day she was too afraid to roll over and now she's all over the house.

She's now even able to pull herself to stand on her own. It was Dec 7 (7 months, 2 weeks and 1 day) when she first did it. She has learned on the same day to sit up from a crawling position.  She does it with lots of care and sometimes I feel like she's having a hard time and is tempted to help her.  But I know she must learn to master doing it by herself.  So the over protective mami in me must be suppressed.  She was with her papi while I was in the bathroom when she reached these big milestones. How would I forget that, it was also the same day and moment when she swallowed a piece of popped balloon! Hubby and I were soooo skeered! Good thing it came out after 2 days, otherwise, we'll be running to the emergency the following day. Now back to LSP standing on her own... she does that every single chance she gets. If there's something she can grab, she'd pull herself up. Even if it's just something lower than her, she'd manage to put her weight on it, support herself with one hand, stand, then raise one hand while she's bend forward a little bit. It's funny seeing her do that stunt. And she does seem to know that it's an achievement as everytime she's able to pull herself up, she'd have her mouth wide open with happiness. I wish I can snap her a picture doing that but I am too afraid to take my eyes off of her as it seems that she can fall off anytime. She was also into a pre-crawl position rocking back and forth for quite some time now. But then she'd plop back into her army crawl. I wondered if she'd really get herself to real crawling or would just pass it off and go directly to walking. But just 6 days shy of turning 8 months, she finally crawled on her hands and knees, butt up. I was able to record the very first moment she did it. I was all emotional, excited anmd nervous while she played the cool. 

She'd pull herself up anywhere she can grab her hands on. believe it or not, she's nursing in this picture!

She's also making good use of her index finger and thumb to pick up things. She passes things from one hand to the other. I could eat up all those cute baby fingers. I love the way they explore my face, and my hands. She'd have a face of a real discoverer - full of fascination and interest. But then those little nails can sometimes get all violent...she loves to scratch! Cutting her nails? Is like sending a cat to have a bath!

Impossible.

She's more and more alert of her surroundings more than ever. Every thing gets her attention. Every music sends her to rock her body back and forth if seated, and jump up and down if she's standing. She does that an instant a music starts to play. I love that she loves music.

She cracks everybody up with her new and old antiques. She has recently started sporting this super cute smile that compose of closing her eyes, smiling with her chin put a little bit forward showing off her only two front teeth and nose crinkled. She loves to wave goodbye or wave hello. She loves to raise her right hand up high as if reaching for something, closing and opening her hand then bending her head backwards and arching her back. She also pretends to be angry or getting serious by raising her arms and suddenly putting them down on her chest - her own version of crossing the arms - and then making a short sound of hmm! Or sometimes she squeals or make harsh sounds with her throat, forehead frowned, eyes angered.  Big theater, I tell you. She also has recently learned to clap her hands. Her claps doesn't make sound but those are obviously very close attempt of clapping the hands.  Soon she'll be dancing flamenco with her abuelo.  She's soooo adorable with all these little tricks. And what she loves the most is having an audience. The more we laugh at her the more she does her tricks. Such a performer.
Didn't I say this smile is super cute?

That crinkled nose is so delectable!

She has grown even more fond of her papi. She'd know when her papi arrives home from work. She'd go very excited waiting for her papi to appear by the door of the room. And once papi appeared? She'd happily crawl towards her papi in the speed of light. Her papi would scoop her up and LSP would inspect his face and body with excitement and curiosity as if she hadn't seen her papi in months. I remember when I was young. My siblings and I would race ourselves running towards our papa everytime he comes home. We'd yell "Papa!!!!!" and shower him with kisses and hang our arms around her neck (then ask for pasalubong or "gifts"). My mama, smiling, would always say that we act as if we haven't seen our papa for a long time and my papa would always say that these take her tiredness after a day-long work. And now LSP is doing much the same for her own papi.

She's also more social now with strangers. Not that she would want to go with them (she's very smart and careful ;-) she loves to stay safe in the arms of mami or papi), but she'd smile and babble to them and would even want to touch their face.

What she has never come to doing is playing with her feet.  I've seen babies by 4 months, like exploring their feet and putting them in her mouth while in a lying position.  I was waiting for her to do that and even playing with her feet with her so she'd pay attention to them.  She would just laugh and play with me but she never did it by herself.  She explores her hands but not her feet.  She probably thinks their icky? bleh.

Lastly, 2 more teeth are already peeping from her gums.  Upper front teeth!  That explains the agitated sleep these past nights and the 2 bags my eyes are sporting.

Happy 8 months, my Little Spanish Pinay!

Oh, and happy 8 months of job well done, Las Boobies!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Late Night Thoughts

It's 2 and quarter in the morning. It must be the tea that I mistakenly drank. Hubby prepared a mint tea for me and a lady grey for him. I took the wrong cup and was too caught up with something that hubby and I were checking on the internet to notice that I was drinking hubby's tea. So now, the caffeine in it is probably hitting me. And when someone's unable to sleep the mind goes tappity-tap like a keyboard.

It made me ponder about the weekend that has just passed by. How I've waited for this weekend to come to get a little bit more rest and yet it just passed me by like a bullet train.  The weekend has been one of those ordinary and quiet weekends. We had lunch at my in-laws' place. With Little Spanish Pinay though, the ordinary weekends has started to become extraordinary. The pre-lunch and lunch time is always full of laughter and giggles. She has become the center of fun in the house. And she does know how to give fun. She's full of antiques that sends off everyone to LOL.

As I look at her abuelo(grandfather) and abuela(grandmother), and how much happiness she is able to give to them, my heart gets filled with so much emotion. She loves to play with them. She squeals and wiggle her little legs in excitement. She shows off her antiques and the abuelos go crazy. And I just can't help but feel very proud. I am the mother of this little person that gives such a big joy to our family.


This little person that is sleeping beside me as I type these thoughts hoping that in the process, sleep will knock, is now the biggest source of my strength and inspiration together with my other half. She's smiling from time to time as angels play with her in her dreams. She has fulfilled my dream. Our dream. How I love to sniff her breath and play with her little hand while she nurse. I love the way she says mah-mah when she cries and calls for me. It's just too darn cute. It makes me think that she already associates the word mama to me. I love to see her get busy on her own, talking alone and playing with her toys but then looking at me from to time and then smile seeing that I am there looking at her.  She's my 24x7 company. She'd climb on me, hug me, kiss me, search for Las Boobies by pulling off my shirt's neckline (yeah, she knows where the pot of gold hides), she talks to me with her own language and I pretend to understand, She's here with me.  For me.  Constantly.  And I am here for her too.  Constantly.  Even after she doesn't need me to anymore.  Suddenly everything else has become secondary to seeing her smile and be happy and healthy and safe.

 This is motherhood.

trying to escape from my sniffing while giggling

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Separation Anxiety

A couple of weeks ago, Little Spanish Pinay seems to have entered separation anxiety period. She's constantly looking for me. When I was out for a few while and be back, she'd suddenly cry like as if she's the poorest baby on earth. It's as if I was away for months.  She'd be practically all over me. Every nursing time is like the first nursing time after so many days. As if she was starved for weeks! She'd greedily grasp La Boobie and gobble up my milk with full of anxiousness and ahrm ahrm noise. It's funny really. Sometimes it's also painful as she'd carelessly bite me and/or pinch El Nipple becuase of too much grabbing. She's like literally milking me with her hand. Crazy, I tell you!  She's also demanding more feeding time at night... or just want to be held and have Las Boobies near her mouth.

mami, don't leave me...

What I am liking (and I don't mind getting used to) about this separation anxiety thing is that she's even more affectionate to me. I always get big hugs and wet kisses from her. Her eyes glow everytime she sees me. Those eyes remind me of hubby's.  From the first time we met until now that we're going for a 4yrs being married.  I have a husband and daugther that adores me.  A luxury, I'd say.  I can't even start to imagine what I did so great to be adored by these two beautiful persons.  Ok, I got carried away a little bit there... so going back...

What is this separation anxiety for babies really? According to Dr. William Sears:
"In babies' minds, Mother is a part of themselves and they are part of Mother. Mother and baby are one, a complete package. These babies feel anxious and frightened when not with Mother. These emotions are normal feelings inside a little person who knows he needs the presence of his mother to thrive and to feel complete."

Separation anxiety is when the baby realises the mom is a separate being. This normally occurs at around 7-12 months of age. At this period, babies do not understand the fact that although something is not seen, it doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. So moms are out of their sight, they think that they are totally gone, and thus the fear and stress they feel of being separated from the only person that can make them complete.

This is a very normal behavior and in fact part of a very important emotional development process. Separation anxiety is part of normal child development and is actually something positive ::although the clinginess of the baby can drain one's energy:: This shows that the baby has a healthy attachment to the mom. As Dr Sears puts it, "Loud separation protests reveal a capacity for forming deep attachments - if they didn't care deeply, they wouldn't fuss so loudly when separated. This capacity is the forerunner of intimacy in adult relationships."

So it seems we are already in this phase. Little Spanish Pinay would suddenly seek for me even she's being held by his father whom she adores a lot. She'd cry for me and would utter ma-ma ma-ma nonstop. She's too darn cute when she does that. And her father would act all jealous because LSP contantly calls for my arms.

It can be overwhelming.  Not because I have to be with her all the time, no.  I love every minute that I am with her but what's overwhelming is the thought that I can't be with her as much as I want and do other chores at the same time.  I try no to worry about the household chores but sometimes, it just can't be helped.  Not to mention that I still have a full-time work that is equally demanding.  But as I've said, as long as she is happy, the rest is secondary... so help me repeat the chant... as long as she is happy, the rest is secondary...

I've attended to each of her demands and needs of being held and attended and nursed. As much as I can.  I tried to tell her in actions and in words that the phase she's undergoing right now is normal, that there's nothing to worry about and that mami will be with her all the way through. 

This week, I notice that she's getting passed this separation anxiety period.  She's spending more and more time playing and willing to be with someone else other than me.  Last Wednesday, for the first time since her first month, we left her for a couple of hours with her abuelos (grandparents).  Hubby and I went for grocery shopping and when we went back to pick her up, she was happily playing with her abuela.  She almost didn't notice me going inside the living room.  When she finally saw me, she smiled with the sweetest, sincerest happiness.  Yesterday, we left her again in the care of my mother-in-law and when we arrived back from our errands, she was seated on top of the dining table and I slowly sat in a chair beside her.  When she noticed me, she smiled as if saying "Hi there, mami!" and contined playing with some keys her abuela gave her.  She looked so grown up to me!  Silly me, I got watery eyes.

Maybe the separation anxiety will be back or perhaps it'll be a different type of anxiety.  Experts on attachement pareting say that everytime a baby crosses over an important phase of their development or learn something important (such as crawling, standing on their own, walking, teething, etc), they can get clingy and/or demand more feedings at night.  So everytime they go through these, the least we can do is let them meet their needs.  As soon as their needs are met, the sooner they'd overcome their anxieties.

And that's what hubby and I intend to do. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Mi Wishlist FNAC

Porque la suerte a veces viene en el momento mas inesperado... participo en el concurso de FNAC!! :)
Because luck sometimes come in unexpected moment... I am participating in this contest by FNAC!! :)

El concurso se trata de publicar una entrada en el blog de los bloguer@s de la lista de las cosas que deseamos que nos regalen esta navidad y que el precio total no supera de 2011€.  Despues de publicar la entrada, hay que mandar un correo a wishlist@fnac.es con el link del enlace y datos del bloguer@.
The contest is to create an entry in the blogsite of each bloggers listing all the things they want to receive as gift this Christmas and that the total price will not be more than 2011€.  After publishing the entry,  an email must be sent to wishlist@fnac.es with the blog link and blogger's information.

A que si que es muy sencillote?
Very simple, ayt?

Este concurso tambien vale hacerlo con el facebook.
The contest is also valid for facebook.

Pues entonces alla voy por mi lista!!
So then here I go with my list!

Apple Funda para el iPad  40€

Iomega eGo SuperSpeed USB 3.0 500 GB color plata, Disco duro portátil PC  89€

Iomega eGo SuperSpeed USB 3.0 500 GB color rojo, Disco duro portátil PC    89€

Samsung UE-22C4010 LED de 22" Blanco   278,07€

TomTom Go Live 1005 GPS Europa 5"  314,95€

Sony DSC-TX9 Gris Cámara Compacta Digital  399€

Apple iPad con Wi-Fi y 3G 64 GB  793€

Pato. Libros de baño  5,23€

 TOTAL: 2008,06€

 Bueno, a ver si hay suerte...

Gracias a Ana de Creciendo con David, me he enterado de este concurso tan suculento!  Ya se que la probabilidad de que me toque es muy pero que muy escasa peeerrrrooooo quien sabe... y por probar, no hay nada que perder.  Ademas me he divertido buscando cosas en la pagina de FNAC que me interesan y por primera vez en mi vida, he hecho unas "compras" sin preocuparme de los precios!!  Bueno, se entiende, compras compras... pues en mi sueño... claro claro.  Pero bueno, ha sido divertido.  Las cosas que he elegido son cosas que me gustan pero que no las voy a comprar asi a primera vista... sino que me va a llevar tiempo en pensar y sobre todo en ahorrar para ellas (y probablemente acabo en no comprarlas)!!!! Ayyyy.
Thanks to Ana of Creciendo con David, I was informed by this oh so tempting contest!  I know that the probability of me winning is very very scarce bbbbuuuuuttt who knows... and for trying, there's nothing to lose.  Besides, I had fun checking out FNAC's website for things I am interested with and for the first time in my life, I "bought" things without worrying about the price!!  Well, bought things... in my dreams, yeah...  Anyways, it was fun.  The things that I chose are the things that I like bu won't buy then at first glance and will take me loooooong time to think about it and most of all to save for them (and most probably, I would end up not buying them at all)!!!! Sigh.

Y ya esta... ahora a cruzar los dedos y rezar! :)
And that's it.... now, let's cross fingers and pray! :)

Baptized

Little Spanish Pinay has received the sacrament of baptism on December 5, 2010 at San Pedro Apóstol Church, Ferrol. The same church where hubby and her madrina were baptized.


The ceremony was held by the parish priest Father Juan, a very good friend of hubby's mom. It was held after the 1pm Sunday mass. It was a very nice and intimate ceremony. There were no other babies to be baptized but LSP so it was quite a private one. The people left in the church were familes and relatives who came to witness this important religious ceremony for our precious daughter.

Ceremony has just started

LSP was nice and quiet at the beginning of the ceremony but when the priest started to put his hand on LSP's head, she was frightened and started crying. No, she started squealing...and wiggling trying to escape from the perceived danger. I already imagined this will happen. She cried herself until the end of the ceremony. But in the midst of her cries, I felt warmth. I felt more blessed. I was quite moved when the priest started saying "Bless this mother...".  I am indeed a mother. And I so felt it all the more and with God's blessing, I felt strengthened. With hubby beside me, the padrinos (godfather and godmother), the family and relatives witnessing the ceremony, the rest of my family and friends who were there in spirit, and the man in front of us that represents God, I WILL be a good mother to LSP. We WILL be the parents that LSP needs that she may become a good child of God.

Let's call this an artistic shot, shall we?

After the ceremony we headed to have a simple lunch with the family. It was a nice opportunity to gather my husband's small family together. The lunch was quite nice. LSP slept in the car going to the place of the banquet. She slept while we were having some drinks and the whole time while appetizers were being served and woke up just before the first plate was served. She was more in the mood after sleeping for about an hour. It was nice to see each of the family members talking to each other. I felt a little pang, remembering my own family back in Manila. It would be wonderful to have them here. But then I know they are with us in spirit in this important and very symbolic celebration.

The small banquet

Another very good friend of mine was not able to come either as she was stuck in Barcelona due to the unexpected strike of the air traffic controllers. She was missed but like my family in Manila, she was there in spirit.

We didn't have many good photos of the ceremony, that's too bad but what's important is that the LSP has received the sacrament of baptism and we were able to share this wonderful celebration with the people closest to us.

Her small cake! It says Happy Baptismal Day!

I also made something for the guests to remember this day

To our dear LSP, welcome to the Christian world. May the water that has blessed you and washed you from original sin, continue to bless you forever. 

Proud catholic family

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Homemaker... Not

I have just realized I am not a good homemaker. Or I'm not a good multitasker mom and wife - you know, juggling between dough-earning work, work around the house and work that entails taking care of an infant. Or maybe I just need time till Little Spanish Pinay becomes older and lesser demanding and more independent. Or maybe I am not just a good homemaker. Period.

As I look around the house, that looks like a tornado has just passed through it, I can't help but just shake my head. How I admire working moms who can have all the time for everything and keep their houses spic and span. Really, I don't know how they do it but it's admirable and I hope I can kiss up to even just half of their level. To think, I work from home saving time from travelling to and from work and I have LSP's nanny who sometimes help me around the house whenever she can AND YET I still have a house that looks like it was turned upside down.
Ya know what I'd tell ya? It's LSP's fault! All her fault. That little-rascal-high-need-clingy-creature is such a handful. No, a handful is an understatement. She's a sackful. A sack of rice.

Just who can resist that pout?  I'd drop everything..


That doesn't change the fact that I am not a good homemaker, though. Sigh.Then again, there's something about the house that makes me feel at peace. LSP's toys are in every corner of the house. Some pieces of her clothes dangle in the sofa, some in the dining chair, others in her play pen. Unmade bed until 5pm or sometimes until the next day. Kitchen sink full of dirty dishes that can't seem to find their way to the dishwasher. Bathrooms not worth describing. Somehow these annoying disorder pleases me in an annoying way. ::Say, what??:: I'm not making any sense, am I? It's just that precisely these things tell me we have a baby at home. We're parents. Just as what we were praying for before. And she's healthy and beautiful inside and out. She's very special in so many ways. She's a high-need baby, constantly requiring that I pay attention to her.  When I'm holding her and my head is turned away from her? She'd scoop my head with one hand so I'd turn my head towards her and then she'd look me in the eyes with her equally big eyes and a sweet smile as if telling me to look at her and only her.   For that, I may have almost zero time for other things such as house chores and my priority right now is to satisfy her needs...attention, warmth, cuddles, food and what-have-you. As long as she is happy, the rest is secondary. Like a dirty hair.

when she´s happy, I´m happy

Monday, November 29, 2010

Cloth Diaper

When I was still pregnant at around 7months, I wrote this entry about disposable diapers.  When Little Spanish Pinay was born, hubby and I decided to really get serious about using cloth diaper. We still use disaposable diaper though from time to time (like if we need to go out the house for a long period of time and there'll be no comfortable place to wash the cloth diaper or if suddenly I ran out of clean cloth diaper). But I can say that the use of disposable diapers that takes 500 years to decompose is very minimal. I know we're not being completely green but let's say using 10 - 15 disposable diapers in a month is A LOT greener than a 200++.  I do what I can to help mother nature though I know I can still do more. Like totally ditching off the use of disposable diapers.  For now, the target is to only use disposable diapers in the event that cloth diaper is not available and/or whenever outside the house for a long period of time.

Now we're on to 7th moth of friendship with cloth diapers and I would say I am really pleased. Little Spanish Pinay never had rashes. No leaks at night and most of all, mother nature is happy! Just a small gesture to give back to our planet and at the same time, provide something good and beneficial to Little Spanish Pinay.

Beneficial it is because her butt stays away from contaminating chemicals of disposable diapers like polyacrylate that is being used to increase absorbency and trap liquid and convert it into gel-like substance. Even those ecological disposable diapers that recently came out in the market contain this toxic chemical among others. What ecological diapers differ from the regular ones is that they may not contain traces of an extremely toxic by-product of paper bleaching process and that the materials used are organic, but not completely free of toxic chemicals like polyacrylate. What's more is that according to study, children who uses cloth diapers can be potty trained earlier. I do not know about that for sure. Then again, my siblings and I never used disposable diapers... but I always remember my mom telling us that none of us had problems wetting our beds.  So it could be true.  We'll see with Little Spanish Pinay... sometimes it is also how parents train the baby.  It's always hard to kiss up to my mom's level when it comes to mothering :)

Some people say that cloth diaper spends lots of water and detergent so it's not totally green.  Personally, I'd say spending certain amount of water - a resource that is mostly renewable resource (not completely but still renewable) to wash is far greener than the waste material brought by disposable diaper that takes 500 years to decompose... there's just no comparison.

What's challenging at the beginning is to find the right type, system and number of cloth diapers that would suit our needs and budget.  We currently have 3 different types of cloth diapers and a number enough to last 3-4 days before loading them off to the washer.

pop-in bamboo cloth diaper
Cheaper diapers I found from ebay.  Not bad.
by cotton babies - same makers of bum genius but these ones are cheaper.  This is by far my favorite!

All of the cloth diapers we chose are one-size.  It can be used from newborn until potty trained.  There's an adjustment for the size for each growth phase.   I do hope that there'll be more and more moms that would opt to use cloth diapers.  It doesn't have to be 100% cloth diaper use all the time but just minimizing the use of these highly contaminating products can be a big help to our dear mother nature.

LSP happy with her flip cloth diaper

Babywearing

I love babywearing. The baby sling was one of those things we bought for baby when we were still pregnant. One of those things we bought without much contemplation. One of thos things we bought because it was 50% off ::I know, not a smart move::

I am just glad that in the end it was one of the smartest buy we've made. I didn't realize there's a whole lot of choices of baby carriers out there and we didn't took some time to check out the different types of baby carriers to know what would work best for us. But heaven just kind of brought us to the right one. Although at the beginning, we thought it was just a waste of money. Little Spanish Pinay wasn't comfortable and It seemed to be too complicated for me to manage. Then again, babywearing is a learned skill. Certain time and practice is needed before one can really enjoy the benefit of it. Frustrated about the fact that I couldn't use well the baby carrier we have, I checked on the internet about baby carriers and some video to see how it is actually used. The video instructions helped a lot. I practiced and put my heart to it coz the idea really fits my needs and LSP's own needs. She is a high-demand baby and needs to be constantly carried. Soon enough, I got the hang of it and I started wearing LSP practically everywhere. It is almost more convenient than having her in the stroller. I can go up stairs of establishments easily. I can go through crowded places swiftly.  I can easily navigate shops and supermarkets without the bulk of a stroller moving around the aisles.  I can do chores around the house. Most of all, she's always near me, I can smell her, give her kisses anytime I want and she's happy!

She sees what I see, she hears what I hear and she moves like I move.  My rhythm and hers are in tune.
Later on, I found out that there actually more benefits from babywearing. There're even different groups that advocate babywearing - basically same advocates of baby wearing. Dr. Sears, a well-known pediatrician and great advocate of attachement parenting puts babywearing as one of the principles of attachement parenting. Below is a snippet from wikipedia:

Benefits of babywearing include:
  • Infants are more organized. Parental rhythms (walking, heartbeat, etc.) have balancing and soothing effects on infants.
  • Independence is established earlier.[3]
  • Attachment between child and caregiver is more secure.[5]
  • Decreases risk of positional plagiocephaly ("flat head syndrome") caused by extended time spent in a car seat and by sleeping on the back. Sleeping on the back is recommended to decrease the risk of SIDS. Cranial distortion resulting from non-vehicular time in car seats has shown to be more severe than in children who develop plagiocephaly from back-lying on a mattress. [6] Concern over plagiocephaly has also led the American Academy of Pediatrics to recommend that infants “should spend minimal time in car seats (when not a passenger in a vehicle) or other seating that maintains supine positioning." [7] None of the babywearing positions require infants to lie supine while being carried. Infants can even be worn while they sleep, also decreasing sleeping time spent in a supine position.
Sometimes I get different looks in the street while I carry LSP using the baby carrier.  Some try to be discreet while some would give a smile when I caught them looking.  Some would go beyond looking and would stop me to say a few comments.  One time an old woman stopped me and said that it is very interesting to see how LSP looks so comfortable where she is. Then later on with a preoccupied eyes, she asked me if my back isn't hurting from all the carrying.  I just smiled and said not really.  I don't particularly like attention but I kind of like the looks I get from people while I carry LSP in the street.  It makes me feel confident and proud as a mom.  Like making a big statement that I am one with my daughter.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

7 Months and Sick with Mamitis

She's turned 7 months last Monday. It seems like it was only yesterday when I was still caressing my big tummy imagining what she'd look like, wondering how her voice would sound. And yet, it feels like she has been with us forever.
say what???? 7 months already? I'm that old?
Yesterday, while I prepared chicken macaroni for her papi's packed lunch the following day, she was in her jumperoo playing while she watches me move around the kitchen. I talked to her and sang to her. She'd look at me, throw a satisfied smile and then go back tinkering with her toys. She'd babble from time to time like telling me something. I'd respond as if I understood what she was telling me. She loves to communicate. She loves attention. She loves that I look at her and talk to her. And I like that. Very much. I can't wait till she uses real words and tell me what she thinks about anything and everything. I'm excited to hear her nonstop whys. Though I am already enjoying her little ways of communication and it's really cute. She demonstrates clearly what she wants and where she wants to go. Sometimes it is amazing how she does it. Babies ARE amazing. I am now secretly wishing that I've studied child psychology or any profession that has something to do with babies instead of computer science. Wait, did I just say that out loud?

She has developed a great fondness with my mother-in-law now. Everytime we go to have lunch with my in-laws, she'd immediately throw her hands to her abuela so she can take her in her arms. They have these hanging lamps at home and Little Spanish Pinay loves to look at them and touch them. Her abuela raised her up once so she can look closer and kind of touch the lamp. Ever since then, she has learned that her abuela is the person that would raise her up to the hanging lamps. One time we were in their living room seated in the sofa. Her abuela came and talked to me. Suddenly, LSP made uhm uhm sounds, raised her hands towards her abuela, looked at the hanging lamp, looked back to her abuela, then the hanging lamp again - she repeated that over and over again. Her message couldn't be any clearer. Poor abuela, LSP is already too heavy for her.
With her abuela who'd give her anything she wants... look at that gigantic chunk of bread.. almost bigger than her head!
She moves a lot when she sleeps. She rolls over, she raises her head, she raises her hand then slams it down her side or her tummy or the bed, she raises her legs and slams them down, she wriggles out of the comforter, she crawls - ye, ya hear that right...she crawls. In her sleep. She's hyper even in her sleep.

Horizonal in the bed... so small yet she occupies the majority of the space in our bed!
 
First thing she'd normally do upon waking up: Roll over and smile when she sees me.
Magandang Umaga, Tala! (that's mami's daily morning greeting for Little Spanish Pinay)
While she loves to eat, she is not very fond of baby food (cereals and those that come in small jars, like gerber products - those are called potitos here in Spain). She would eat them but just a few. She prefers what we eat. Everytime she sees us eating something, she'd ask for it with her uhm uhm sounds and mouth gestures and clasped raised hands. She loves bread. She loves biscuits. She loves fruits that she can eat with her anti-choke feeder. She loves carrots and potatoes. She loves olives! Oh my Lord, I am not even sure if that is alright. I do not give her whole olive for her to eat alone, ok? I know that it's a choking hazard ;-) So, no reason to sue me and remove my child custody, puhleeze. In general I think she loves finger foods. She likes it if she can feed herself. She has also tried her first chicken meat - guess what, she loves it! I have to make some more time making baby recipes. Any one has good recipes? Share please!

She looooves playing hide and seek. She'd squeal and wiggle and bite as she gets too excited. She also loves that someone runs after her. She is very playful. She likes to scoot around the house, she loves to be carried and thrown up high in the air. She loves opening and closing the door, the cupboard, the drawers, the oven, anything that she can pull open and slam shut close! She's a human energizer - keeps going, and going, and going... I can't keep up with her! At the end of the day I am just super exhausted. Limp limbs are what I have before hitting the bed.
playtime with papi
She loves to play with the phone, with the remote control, with the laptop... she goes crazy... insanely crazy when she see those things.  And she loves to drop her toys... she'd wait till someone picks them up an then ZAS! throw them again on the floor.  Couldn't she be any naughtier?

It's getting more and more difficult to have a good photo session with LSP too. One second she'd do a funny gesture but another split of second, she has bowed her down down ot twisted her head away from the camera, etc. Too fast for my poor phone camera to capture. Even with a good camera, I couldn't get a good angle as she goes on her own or would want to crawl away from the camera. I need help from hubby to distract her and make her sit still. I feel like I already have a toddler LOL

She'd twist and turn her head away from camera

She'd sway her arms joyously and bang her head and bounce her body... result? blurred foto

But sometimes, I can get lucky and capture a contagiously happy face like this.
She's even more social now. She'd smile, she'd want to touch stranger's face, she'd seem to want to be taken by raising her hands towards the person but when taken, she'd look for me and after a minute, she'd cry. She is definitley sick-stricken with mamitis - that is an invented word here in Spain that describes the behavior of a baby that is "too attached" to moms. Considered like a sickness in a funny way.

But I am enjoying her mamitis... I love the way her eyes search for me. I love the way she yearns for my arms, my warmth, my being.  I love the way her eyes glow every time she sees me back after a few minutes of being away.  I love the way she cups my face with her two hands and stare at my face for a few seconds with her big expressive eyes and sweet smile. I love the way she calls for my attention.  I love the way I am an exception for her from everybody else. If that is really some sort of sickness, then I hope she won't get cured :-)
One of her mamitis attack
Happy 7 months my mamitis-stricken Little Spanish Pinay!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

An A+ Customer Service

Our telephone-internet company made my day, that I thought I have to blog about it. How they made my day, I'll tell more about it later. Rarely I'd rave about a company this much as nowadays, good customer service has suddenly become a rare gem. But this one, really deserves a blog entry. We've been pleased with their customer service from the beginning. Phone inquiries were promptly attended with patient, amiable and respectful operators. Troubles (which are seldom) were resolved in the shortest time possible. We've chosen this company as they were the only ones offering fiber optics internet connection in the area. Also at the time of our subscription, when we moved in to our own place, there was a very good promotion saving us a good amount of dough for a year (remember: frugal is the middle name, savings is the game), so we took advantage.

After more than a year, and as our expenses grow like a weed, we thought we should revisit some of the expenses we'd like to cut down. The internet connection was one of the those that hit the list. We thought maybe we can use the normal ADSL connection that would give us a bit of a savings monthly. So we started looking for other internet provider. Just by imagining we'd be saying goodbye to fiber optics and to this provider giving us good service, we already started missing them. Boohoo, right? Then again, thinking and rethinking about it over and over, in the end, we decided to stick with fiber optics. Going back to ADSL is like a step backward. What's more, I work from home and I do need a very good internet connection so we better cross out internet connection as one of the expenses we'd cut back on. The internet then was crossed out from the list we'd be cutting back.

So, going back to why this provider made my day today. Well, I started getting into twitter and I started to follow this provider yesterday - to get recent news and offers. I sent them a tweet to ask a question. They promptly replied. And then right after, they sent a tweet to everybody announcing that they have reached 1000 followers. I immediately tweet back: "@quecheparece no me digas que soy la numero 1000??? :-)" "don't tell me I'm the 1000th??? :-)". I didn't actually expect a reply from them but what do you know, they did and told me "no, la 1001. Pero es un numero mas bonito. Quieres una camiseta?" "No, you're 1001st. But it's a prettier number. You want a shirt?". Isn't that sweet? It's just a shirt but small details like this makes the difference. Of course I said yes and they immediately sent me a privy asking for my address.

I am glad that in the end we stayed with them. Viva la pura fibra!



Ear Piercing = Piercing Cry

Yesterday, we had Little Spanish Pinay's ears pierced. It's probably a little late already as normally baby girls would already have their ears pierced before they leave the hospital. With LSP's case, this service was not offered to us in the hospital where she was born. Also, during our first visit to the pedia, we were told that it would be better to wait till her six months so she'd already have enough anti-tetanus vaccine. Obedient as we are, we nod our head, convinced with the reasoning given to us.

So after almost 7 months now... time to get this over and done. We went to the nearest pharmacy for LSP's first initiation as belonging to female group. The pharmascist used a marking pen to mark the spot where the piercing gun (my made up name) would put the earings. Little Spanish Pinay didn't have a clue what was about to happen. Tsug! Fired the piercing gun and it took LSP 2 seconds before letting out her piercing cry. Poor her. That first piercing went by smooth. But after that, since LSP already know what these are about, she was all protest. She fought hard to stay away from the mean man in white robe. She twisted, cried 10,000 decibels, moved her arm frantically... I wanted to calm her down first but the mean man in white robe didn't seem to be willing to wait so off we go again for the second try. It took the mean man in white robe a good while to finally hit the right spot. LSP was fierce! When the gun shot its final blow, LSP almost lost her breath. I panicked a bit. She suddenly stopped crying. It was too sudden that it seemed like she had lost her breath. And then all she was doing was short hard sobs. She was soooo scared. Then after a few seconds she started crying again but this time in a faint sound. Still with short quick sobs-like. That thing that happens to children when they cried too much. Like gasping for air and moving their heads sideways in a reflex-like movement. I do not have a clue if there's a term for that in Englsh. I almost broke down to tears too. I know, I'm such a softie. She stopped crying when we left the pharmacy. But she wasn't happy. I kissed her, hugged her nonstop, sang to her, danced her - all I got was just one itsy bitsy tiny smile.

She cried like this.... but 10 times worse!
Isn't your heart breaking too at the sight of this poor thing?
When we came home, papi was waiting for us since he was working from home (papi has flu). Upon seeing her papi and hearing papi's joyful voice, she happily smiled and jumped and wriggled in my arms. Papi never fail to make her smile. Mami, is one and only but Papi, is super papi!

Another super is that we've finally got our ears pierced!! I know when she's older she'll thank me for this :)

Spoke Too Soon

Little Spanish Pinay with sniffles
Little Spanish Pinay continues with her colds as of this writing :-( Though she didn't have fever anymore after last Friday, she continue to have sniffles. We decided to go to her pedia yesterday just to check that it's just simple colds and sure enough, it is just that. She was given cough syrup to take and saline solution to help her expel the nasal congestion. She was such a sport taking her medicine! So proud of her! Although last Monday she already seemed like she was almost back to normal, her runny nose made a come back. Good thing it wasn't too bad as she is still able to sleep at night.


The other night though, she had her nose too clogged and we do not have a nasal aspirator so in desperation, I sucked it directly... with my mouth. I know. Yuck. But I'd do anything to help my Little Spanish Pinay get relieved from any type of suffering. Anything. And everything. Even if it's just temporary or just a little relief, it's worth it. And I'd do it again as necessary. I guess that comes with being a mom.

What's bad is that she passed down the virus to her papi. Hubby is now under house arrest due to his flu. Our family doctor wanted to give her sick leave for a week so he can completely rest but since hubby's very responsible at work, he just asked to work from home instead. They don't have much people now within their team so if he'd be on sick leave, it'll cripple the whole team.


So, now I am taking care of two patients at home. I hope my immune system would stay loyal to me as it'll be more difficult if the three of us would become sick at the same time. 

Boo to cold weather and too much rain!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Really Special Christmas to Look Forward To and a Christmas Tree Nowhere to be Placed

Did you get the memo? I didn't! I am shocked with the realization that it's only 5 weeks before C.H.R.I.S.T.M.A.S! How could time fly sooo fast? Really, hours and days and weeks and months are passing by me like a bullet train. I'm hardly able to keep up. It'll be Little Spanish Pinay's first Christmas and I really want it to be something special but I don't know what to plan or where to take time. Heck, I don't even have time to cook an elaborate dinner these days. Panic is what I feel, I tell you.

But then, really, what is it to prepare? Christmas will come and will be special no matter what. Just by celebrating Christmas with the newest addition to the family is already making everything extremely special. We've already got the brightest star to top off the Christmas tree - could there be any more special than that?

Could anything else make our Christmas day and every day more special than those to-die-for smile? 

So let me repeat these words to myself to help me calm down. I think more than panic, I am feeling really, really excited and palpitated (I know palpitated is used incorrectly but I want it to rhyme excited, ok? So just let it pass you grammar freaks).  She'll go crazy seeing all the Christmas decors and lights everywhere.  And the gifts! Not like she'd already understand the concept of gifts but for sure she'll enjoy looking and touching and playing with new things :)

Erhm, speaking of Christmas tree, I do not have a place in our living room to put it!! The place where we put it last year is now being occupied by Little Spanish Pinay's playpen.  And I just couldn't find any other place in the living room to put it. Really, with Little Spanish Pinay, our living room looks even smaller... she got all her things all around the room!

Would it be totally weird if I put it in the kitchen? Hmmmmm


 p.s. I used the word really 8 times!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I Fell in Love


...with this French store for children's clothes. Luuuuuv their style, their selections and the variety of colors which are beyond what's traditional for children (you know, the pink and blue). Here in Spain, or at least where we live, many parents dress their children with what I call snooty, classical 19-so-old style. My husband describes them as ripipi. Ripipi is shorter so I'd use ripipi. We don't want ripipi.

no, not our style

They're not bad, only that they are so not our style. They're very stiff and too snooty. Children dressed in those style seems to belong high-class families with helpers in uniform. You get the idea. And we are not so that. We are wash-and-wear kind of dressers. And for kids, I like fun, colorful and stylish-cute. I like it to be actual but doesn't look like clothes for adults. No, I don't want a mini-me but a Little Spanish Pinay dressed for her age. With clothes that can be stained or would allow her to roll over the floor or the grass or hop non-stop, etc. Most especially clothes that wouldn't dent our budget and yet has a very good quality.


Just how cute are they!

All those describes my new found love. Orchestra. What's more, with the Club 50% membership, you get 50% off on all of the items in the store. ALL. ALL items. For a whole year. You just need to pay 30 euros membership and you got 50% off on ANY item you buy for whatever amount for a whole year. Not. Bad. At. All. No more waiting for sale season. As true as my middle name is frugal. And when they're on sale and an item is already on sale at 50%? You get 70% instead! Yeah, baby!

I fell in love with this store so deeply, now I am dreaming about opening a franchised store. Shut up. I know it's a big dream on but hey, dreaming is free so, let the girl be with her dream.
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