my babies

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Knitting in the round and my mom

(Two unrelated topic really, but as you know women's thoughts flow from one topic to another with no rhyme or reason)

Last week I enjoyed a few hours of blissful knitting time at my knitting group, which I haven't been to in months, since Mia was born. Thanks to my understanding hubby for babysitting the little ones! I love my kids dearly but a few hours away from them is much needed once in a while, and I came back revitalised and hopefully a better mom to them both. I decided to learn a new technique - knitting in the round- using 4 double pointed needles and the friendly group of knitters helped me. Turned out it was easier than i thought it would be, and totally addictive.

I ended up with this pair of gorgeous fingerless mitts. They're quite long, run up to half my lower arm. Pattern is Toasty (free, check on ravelry). Such a simple, understated beauty. You can finish these gloves in a few hours. Perfect for gifts. I might make more just so I could use the double pointed needles again.

Aaand, in other news, my mom is here!

hmm...why is that little girl breastfeeding in most photos?

She's only been here a couple days, and i think we're already gaining weight! So much yummy food! she's been cooking up a storm and we're loving it! this morning she made laksa johor for breakfast! yumyum...i hope she will enjoy her time here...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

There's no use in crying over spilled milk

Adam wanted some milk. I poured it for him, asked him to sit on the dining table to drink it so that Mia wouldn't be able to grab it out of his hands (as she often does). He refused, and insisted that he sit on the floor to drink it. I made it clear to him I wasn't happy about it, but gave him the cup anyway. He drank some, then walked over to the table. On the way, the cup slipped from his hand and milk spilled on the floor.

I was upset, mainly because he didn't listen to me in the first place. Didn't say anything, just got up to get a dishcloth in the kitchen. Mia started crying, she doesn't like it when I walk away from her. Adam followed me to the kitchen, started apologising softly 'Sorry Mommy, sorry'. I said 'Tulah Adam, I told you to sit on the table. Kan dah tumpah'. He can see from my expression that I was upset with him.

I wiped the floor. Mia walked over, crying, climbing over me. I took her, put her a short distance away so I can wipe. She was still crying, trying to get over to me. Adam went to her, quickly grabbed some toys and put them in front of her to distract her from coming over to me. 'Here Mia, play toys. Mommy lap jap ok...' and at the same time, saying also to me 'Sorry Mommy, sorry..sorry..'.

Oh gosh. That woke me up. Who's the grown up in this house? The Mommy who lost her temper over a little spilled milk, or the little boy who isn't afraid to apologise for his mistake and is clever enough to take care of his sister.

Thank you for teaching me a lesson, Adam. I'm so proud of you.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Mia @ 10 months

Honestly, she's 10 months? Can you believe that?

She's found her feet and is absolutely refusing to crawl any more. She can walk 2-3 meters now. She can turn around, walk right and left. She falls on her bum constantly, but she just keep getting up again. She likes to browse the floor for leftover food (sigh...i do feed her, i promise) but even then she'll pick up the food and then eat it standing up. Determined to prove to me she no baby no more.

I love it when she calls me 'Mama mama'. She can get away with anything if she calls me Mamama. Even Adam started calling me Mama too. Sometimes she calls me Dada Dadi too. She blabs a lot, sounding like she's really telling a story.

She knows when Daddy's getting ready for work. She doesn't like it when Daddy leaves. She'll immediately go to him, and start manja-manja. Poor Daddy doesn't stand a chance against her charm. He'd have to go to work thinking about her all day. And when he comes home from work, she'll greet him, hug him. Who can resist that girl?

she knows what 'susu' means. If you ask her 'Adik, susu mana?' she'll show you where it is, and probably demand a sip too.

She's growing way too fast. Where's my little baby? But oh she's still there. When she hugs me close and rests her head on my chest. When she gives me a wet sloppy kiss. When she flashes me that cheeky beautiful smile. Still there. Always my baby.

Happy 10 month birthday, my pretty one. I love you so much.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Hand-knitted sweater for him

Yes, it is finished!!!! I am beside myself with relief. It took me a total of 4 months to finish it, on and off. I was worried it was going to turn into one of those projects that were started but never finished. But finished it I did, phew.

It's the first sweater I ever made, and the first adult item I knitted too. It took 14 skeins of yarn (Rowan's Summer Tweed - beautiful yarn to work with. Gorgeous shade of green and the fabric it knitted to is soft and tweedy. If you plan to use this yarn, I would suggest using aluminium knitting needles instead of wooden ones because the tweed effect gives it a bit of friction, making it harder to knit with wood )

Here's a zoomed up photo of the intricate pattern. To create this pattern, a cable needle is used throughout every right side row, which is the reason why it takes so long to finish it. But I liked the challenge, and I think it probably brought me up another level as an 'intermediate' knitter instead of a beginner. To any knitters interested, the pattern is from Nora Gaughan's Men collection. All of the knit in that book looks terrific. I wish I had time to knit them all.

Unfortunately I suspect he's not going to fall head over heels in love with it. I've run into a few issues with its sleeves. The sleeves seemed to have grown a few inches and flared out at the bottom, all by itself, within the first wear. I have no idea how to go about fixing it, since you can't cut and sew a knit, you see. Or can you? does anybody have any ideas? It's my gift for my husband for our last winter in London, so I need it to be awesome. Help please!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Yours and mine

Well you know how I haven't been sewing for a while? Recently I made this little project for instant gratification - baby legwarmers. It's time for legwarmers but the ready-made ones are so expensive! So I made them out of normal ladies' striped socks. The cotton socks costs less than a pound a pair from Primark. And the sewing time is about 10 mins per pair. Awesome.

and then I realised that I can use it too, as arm-warmers. They're becoming increasingly popular these days ('Life unexpected', anyone?) and very practical. Keep my arms warm and if my fingers get cold I can pull them down to cover them up too. I'm thinking I should whip up a few more of these.

I can wear them, Mia can wear them and even Adam can wear them as legwarmers (but he wouldn't!) and it's small enough you can always throw them in your purse if anybody needed them later in the day. The British weather can be so unpredictable. You see the sun is out so you go out all skedandy for a short trip to the children centre and the next thing you know you and your kids are soaked from head to toe. Which actually happened to me last week and the only pair of dry 'pants' for Mia I can dig up from my (sister's) bag are these legwarmers. Bless them.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Mommy's knitting bag

This is my bag. I fill it up with my current knitting project. It's always by my side. Whenever I find a free moment, I take out my needlework and knit. One stitch at a time. Adam knows this. He calls it ' Mommy's knitting bag '. He knows Mommy loves knitting. Sometimes when he asks me to play with him - in the house he built up, or the pirate boat that he's sailing - he makes sure he takes Mommy's knitting bag so that Mommy can knit in the house/boat. Whenever Mia comes and try pull the yarns out of Mommy's knitting bag, he tells her 'No Mia, this Mommy's knitting bag'.

Today I bought a new bag. He saw the bag and looked at it.

Adam: What's this Mommy?
Mommy: That's my new knitting bag. Cantik tak?
Adam: Oh...ok...*opens zip* eh? no knitting?

*the bag is new so it's still empty.

Adam: I don't think so this knitting bag, Mommy.


Later that day, he and Daddy was drawing on the computer. This is what they drew;

that's Daddy in the driver's seat, then Adam, then Mommy and then Mia in the back. Can you guess what's the little thing next to Mommy is?

It's Mommy's knitting bag, of course.

*my husband told me while they were drawing he said ' Where Mommy's knitting bag?'

Friday, November 5, 2010

Breastfeeding Mia

yes she is breastfeeding in this photo

I think I wrote a lot of entries on breastfeeding Adam, didn't I? Somehow with Mia I haven't been talking about breastfeeding much any more. Yes she is exclusively breastfed too. It's just that by now nursing on demand has become so much part of my life, as natural and essential as breathing, that I hardly even think about it much any more.

Breastfeeding with my second child is different from breastfeeding my first. I am a stay-at-home mom this time, so there is no struggles with pumping and storing and not having enough milk. We're both very lucky. I remember how much effort is needed to fully breastfeed a child while working full time, and it gives me the appreciation for this special time that I have with my daughter.

Mia is a frequent nurser, but unlike Adam, she rarely breastfeed to sleep, except at night when we're in bed. Normally she needs a rocking in Daddy's arms for her to fall asleep after her nursing sessions.

With Mia I've breastfed practically everywhere - on buses, tubes, in the park, on the plane, while walking on the street, while shopping and talking to shopkeepers, in rivers and beaches while paddling, on boats, in restaurants...yeah, literally everywhere. Mia is a champion on breastfeeding in public. She's not shy, she'll ask for her milk whenever she feels like it, and she doesn't mind her face being covered in fabric while she's nursing. I've never even had to use a nursing cover. I normally use my wrap or scarf to cover up.

In this country breastfeeding is even more uncommon than in Malaysia. At least in Malaysia everywhere you go there is a breastfeeding room available. The last time we went for Mia's developmental check up, out of about 15 babies her age, only Mia and one other kid is breastfed. The rest are bottle-fed babies. Even the health visitors who were doing the check up didn't seem to be too knowledgeable on breastfeeding. While giving us the information on how much formula an 8 month old baby should consume in a day, they 'guessed' that the breastfeeding equivalent would be around 3 feedings a day. Are you kidding me? I'd have done 3 feedings by 10 am.

The reason I am thinking a lot more about breastfeeding recently is because I am currently facing a breastfeeding hurdle. Mia has 6 teeth already, and she is now teething, again. She is in a lot of pain, and so am I! It's come to a point where I've started to bleed and having to pump to avoid causing even more damage. Luckily Mia has no issues drinking breastmilk out of a bottle, alhamdulillah. I am having flashbacks to all those painful days back then whenever Adam was teething. And then it occurred to me, this is our first breastfeeding problem. After 9 months of smooth-sailing, exclusive nursing. It has been quite a blessing indeed. I've never had to buy a single bottle of formula with both kids. I hope we will get over this hurdle soon, but for now, I am happy to be paying my due. Alhamdulillah.

I hope to continue breastfeeding her until she is 2 years old. And the rest of our future children too. I may not be the best mother in the world, heck, most of the time I don't even know what I'm doing..but this one I do know is the right thing to do. So if one day God asks me, what have you done for your children, I can say I did one thing right, at least. InsyaAllah.


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