my babies

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I love..

Photo taken by Adam

I love spending alone time with my boy.

I love listening intently to the little stories that he tells as he worked, making me realised just how smart he is becoming.

I love how he taught me how to use the scissors ('Look Mommy, here scissors. Hand here, hand here, snip snip' ) . You are teaching me oh so much my dear.

I love how he slowly picked little pieces of paper to decorate his bus, and then editing the sizes of those pieces, just so that they'll fit perfectly. ('oh this one too big. oh this one too small')

I love how every time he glued on a piece, he leaned back a little to look at it and said 'Perfect!'.

I love how he tried to make his scissors smile ('smile scissors!') for the camera.

I love that when he's feeling happy and relaxed he says ' so nice! '

But most of all, I love him.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Why we love pretend play

I always love watching Adam play, but my favourite is when he engages in pretend play. See the pic above, what does it look like to you? A mess? Well let me break it down for you:

The chair, makes a home. The quilt, just makes it cozy probably :) oh and he folds up the end to make 'the door'. The red train? well that's Gary the snail, of course. The striped gloves is Gary's bed, the sock is Gary's slide and the cheese and bread? well those are Gary's lunch naturally.

This is how the story unfolds;

Adam: Mommy come here, look, Sekaya House.
Mommy: Oh, is that a squirrel house? nice! Where's the squirrel?
Adam: No, no sekaya...this, Gary the snail. *points to the train*
oh I it's a squirrel house, for a snail.

He fusses about and here are some of the scenarios he made up:


Adam: Mommy, sleeping time (meaning he's asking me to sing the sleeping time song)
Mommy: Ok, *singing* sleeping time..sleeping time..
Adam: Wait! here Gary snail..*gives me Gary*
Then he grabs another train, and tells me this is also a snail. then he proceeded to stroke the train ever so gently...
Adam: Ok Mommy, sleeping time.

He continues to stroke each of the 'snails' as I sing, and then put them to bed.

wake up

Adam: Mommy wake up Gary
Mommy: *sings the wake up song*
Adam turned up the snails and asked me to help. and when everybody's awake...
Adam: Ok....thank you..good job Mommy!


Adam: Gary snail...nounch (i.e lunch)
He proceeded to serve Gary his lunch. Of course Mommy and Mia gets some lunch too (Adam suap. Mia enjoys this part the most)

This wonderful pretend play goes on for over an hour, full of creative imaginative play. Ok, it may seem like just silly child's play...but there is so much more to it than we realise..

First of all, when he's pretending that the train is a snail, he is well aware that a train is a train, a snail is a snail. He does not actually believe that train is a snail, meaning that he is well aware of the fact that he is just pretending. He is giving a separate mental state to the snail (hungry, sleepy etc) meaning that he is acknowledging that other beings has feelings, a mental state different to his own. A child at this age, their world revolves around themselves, how they feel, what they need. For them to assign a separate mental state and desires to others requires advance thinking skills for a 2 year old. He is practising his social skills at the same time, in the way that the is communicating and being gentle to the snail. Also, he is putting the effort to portray his imagination to me, and include me in his very detailed pretend play.

Really, such complicated and and rather sophisticated thinking skills are being developed in what appears to be simple 'child's play'. I feel so amazed and honoured to have the front seat to witnessing such magic unfolds. Alhamdulillah..let's remember this the next time we feel too busy to play with our children...a reminder to myself really...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Knitting for him - a work in progress

It's my first time knitting something for adult . It'll probably take me months, as this pattern is very complicated, there is use of cable throughout every right side row..meaning that every rightside row can take 15-30 mins depending on how distracted i am..but i'm very excited about this project, something new and exciting. I've been working on this for almost a month now, and it's not even 1/3 finished's ok, the fun is in the making...such is the beauty of knitting..there is love in every stitch, just imagine how much love you're giving in a simple sweater.

Knitting teaches me about patience and slows me down to a mindful pace. There is always work for the idle hands. As I watch my children grow and play, or enjoy a movie date with my husband, my work progresses, and out of it, emerge something beautiful for my loved ones.

errr,, i do hope it'll fit though!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mia at 7 months

Mia turned 7 months yesterday. This month she sure did a lot of growing up.

Her first two teeth came out. Cute!

She's a master crawler already. She crawls all over the house now, into the kitchen, the bathroom, the bedrooms.

She started pulling herself up into a standing position a few weeks ago and now she's getting quite stable and can cruise around by holding onto furnitures..we were quite surprised she's standing so's time to baby proof the house all over again..

she can let go and stand for a few seconds..

she has the most amazing bubbly personality, once you get to know her. But if you're a stranger and you come and pick her up i.e. take her away from Mommy, she will scream her lungs out so loud, you'd think somebody's torturing her.

She needs Mommy around her 24-7. If she sees me leaving the room, she screams bloody murder.

But she also has the sweetest smile. One smile and we melt like butter.

She calls me Mamama and Dadada for Daddy. But she's only 7 months. We like to think she's a little Einstein, but more likely it's just coincidental.

Happy 7 months old, baby girl. We love you!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Ramadhan 2010

How's your Ramadhan so far? Ours has been great...but also, difficult. Since I had Adam every Ramadhan I'm either breastfeeding or pregnant while fasting but this year must be the hardest, I think. Here we are fasting during summer, which means longer hours. Sahur time is around 3am (3+ masuk subuh) and iftar is around 8.30pm.

spinach lasagne

After sahur we go back to sleep, and by the time we wake up again, I'm already hungry/thirsty! Mia is breastfeeding as normal. I don't think my milk has dropped, alhamdulillah..such is the blessing of being a stay at home mom, I don't have to worry about pumping and milk supply dropping anymore..alhamdulillah...but man, i am hungry all the time! (tgh feeling kebulur as we speak) 17.5 hours of a long time...

but berkat Ramadhan, eventhough i keep complaining how hungry i am...i still manage to get through the days...alhamdulillah...

semoga Ramadhan kita semua diberkati insyaAllah...

choc brownie

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cornwall, Day 4

Ok, ok, final entry on Cornwall I swear ;)

In the morning we checked out of our lovely tipi and went to Trevathan Farm again for breakfast and a bit of fruit picking..Adam's raspberry picking there..funny how long it took to fill up that punnet no matter how many raspberries we've been picking..

oh there's why! (but i don't blame him, they are delish freshly picked!)

Then we drove to Trevaunance Cove, St Agnes..

had our last bit of seaside play before we go home..

i'm missing the sea already..hmm i wonder if you can still have a beach day in Ramadhan?

from St Agnes we drove home...and on the way we stopped by at this lake (another spot found from the Wild Swimming book). Oh according to Adam you can find a jellyfish just about anywhere if you look really closely :)

Big beautiful lake that you can swim in..

ok that's it...our Cornwall summer adventure...hmm..good times.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Adam at summer school

I have yet another entry to do on Cornwall, but today I want to write about Adam. For 3 weeks now Adam has been going to this nursery, for their summer play scheme. This nursery is different from the usual children centre that I take him to, because here we are supposed to leave him and come back to pick him up later. Originally I went here to register Adam for pre-school, for when he turns 3 (in theUK the kids start pre-school at 3 yo) and then the managers told me that they have a summer playscheme, if i'm interested. It's a fee-paying scheme but Adam got a sponsored space. Normally I would prefer to take him to the children centre, so that I could be there for him , play with him, teach him things and watch his development. But in summertime the children centres are closed for a few weeks. Plus it is Ramadhan now and Adam doesn't do too well if we stay cramped at home for long periods of time. He'll end up watching too much tv and then he'll start to get cranky. So I decided that it would be a good idea to send him to this play scheme. At the same time he will get some time to get used to this nursery, which will be good for when he attends it in January. The session is from 9.30am - 12. and the play scheme runs for 6 weeks only, through summer.

The activities there are great - sand, water, painting, toys etc...the same kind of activities you can get from the children centres. I noticed here that small children are not pressured into learning their ABCs or 123s, it's mainly about learning through play which i think is amazing, and is how it should be. But I'm really anxious about leaving Adam there....

The first week either me or my husband stayed with him. The second week we leave him for 10 mins, 30 mins, 1 hour and gradually in the third week leaving him for longer time. each time we leave we tell him clearly that we're leaving for a while and we'll be back later. We don't leave until he's happy to let us go. I like that system, don't you? well eventually we did leave him for the whole session but....i think we suffer more that he does...we keep worrying and thinking about him when we leave....everytime i leave him i feel like crying...let me paste here my husband's facebook status from yesterday when he dropped Adam off:

At Adam's school..

Me: Ok Adam, Daddy pegi work ok
Adam: Ala..Adam angis..
Me: Sorry Dam. Ok Daddy wait sekejap ok (i almost broke into tears)
Then few kids came..
Me: Adam main dgn friends ok..
Adam: Hmmm..ok

Then he salam and kissed me before i left to work with feeling guilty. But i know that i have to do this for his own good. Miss him already & love u Adam! Can never imagine my life without him..

I was so worried when my husband told me this...felt so sorry for Adam..Later when I came to pick him up, as i walked in, I saw him playing and having so much fun with his friends. He was really enjoying himself and fitting in well. It was such a relief to see...and also...a bit sad...i boy is growing up...

Adam, Mommy love you so miuch..

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Cornwall, Day 3

We started the day by having breakfast at the Trevathan farm nearby. More about this farm tomorrow..

Then we drove about 45mins in search of this hidden bay - Porthcothan Bay (my guide book for this holiday - Wild Swimming - Coast! another great book by Daniel Start). This beach is just a small little cove, with very few people around. It's very beautiful, and safe for children..

There was a little stream running down the side, the water coming from the river upstream. Day 2 after freezing himself cold swimming at Daymer Bay, Adam swore he doesn't want any more swimming. But as soon as he sees this stream, I had to practically drag him away from the water to get him changed before he jumped in.

Mia was also in a good mood. She doesn't like it when it's too hot or too windy or there are too many people around..but this beach was not too windy or hot or was just perfect. It was definitely my favourite beach so far. There was a wonderful sense of serenity here, aaah...blissful...writing about it now is making me feel like going there again..

Adam had the most fun. Here he is 'swimming'. He played in such glee and happiness, until he was so exhausted that he fell asleep on the sand, in my lap. Oh..that was a good day..

I don't know if we're ever going to Cornwall again, but if we do, I'll definitely want to come to Porthcothan Bay again...

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Cornwall, Day 2

pics from our second day...

beautiful Daymer Bay, a very kids/family friendly beach..


rowing a boat at the lake at the tipi..

swimming in the lake..

my husband cooked a barbeque that night..

most yummy burgers and hotdogs i've ever eaten..

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cornwall, Day 1

Selamat menyambut Ramadhan Mubarak...

Finally I have time to update on the holiday in Cornwall..

We travelled at night and slept over at a friend's house in Bristol (thank you Kak Faz !) and in the morning we drove to Cornwall (jauh, total about 5-6 hours drive from London). We arrived around 12pm and checked in to our tipi. Love the place, and the tipi is nice and roomy, enough space for Mia to crawl around...we were upgraded to a large tipi (thank you Tipi Holidays!) Come to think of it, ever since we had Mia, for every holiday we have been upgraded to a bigger accommodation for free! Rezeki adik lah dik...

So after settling down, we drove over to Port Isaac, a beautiful little fishing village. The views there are just spectacular..

this si Port Gaverne, next to Port Isaac, you can swim here at this little cove, but we went somewhere sandier...(there are plenty of beaches to choose from in Cornwall)

to Polzeath. A huge sandy beach nearby. It's mainly a surfer's beach though, so the waves are rather strong, so we explored the rocks and small tidal pools. Adam caught quite a few little fishies..

after a nice sunny day at the beach, we went back to the husband this warm little fire by our tipi..a great finish to a wonderful day..

Monday, August 9, 2010

We're back!

We just got back from our Tipi holiday. It was wonderful, full of days at beautiful beaches, amazing views, quiet time at the lake and open fire by the tipi.

I'll update later with stories of our holiday adventures..

It's good to be back, to the warmth and comfort of home. has been all about resting, getting ourselves ready for the magical month of Ramadhan...

Hope you all had a good weekend..

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The River Test

On Sunday we went to this place, in Houghton, a small village near Stockbridge. Through the village this river runs, but the riverside properties are private (how lucky they are!) except for this one small public footpath where you can bathe and swim in the river. The water is absolutely clear and beautiful, you can see through to the bottom of it. It wasn't easy to find this place, it is so secluded and hidden that only the local people would know about it. I don't know how the author of that book found it.

The view of that place totally took our breath away. There are so many fish in that river!

We were practically the only ones there for most of the day. Some local kids and a couple other families came to swim for a little bit, and there are local people passing by on their walks..but that was it.

Can you believe how clean the water is?

Adam had the most fun...

Under the bridge the water is deeper and you can swim against the current. This little daredevil jumped off the bridge! cool!

Mia is breastfeeding in the water. Like it's the most natural thing in the world. Which of course, it is.

Awesome, awesome place. We definitely want to come here again..

p/s: Tonight we're going on another adventure. Last few wild swimming trips has been day trips but this time we're going on a short break. This place is definitely a little different than what we're used to. There isn't going to be any electricity, or internet (maybe i can still facebook on my mobile, as long as my battery doesn't run out!). Let's see how we cope...hehe..this one is a really back to nature holiday. I'll be back next week with blog updates. Wish us luck!


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