Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Don't Ever Play with Something that Resembles a Stick!

Don’t ever let your baby or toddler play with anything that resembles a stick. Even if your baby didn’t end up injuring himself/herself, your baby may end up injuring others or even yourself. That’s what Mommy learnt the hard way. And having a hurt eye is really no fun at all. So don’t risk it. It all began like this.

That evening, Mommy played with Juan Or after bringing him back from the babysitter’s house. What was the game? It was a game of hitting the wind chime. The wind chime was hung high up on the beam of the ceiling. And Mommy knows that Juan Or loves to hear the sound of the wind chime. A fretful Juan Or can easily be pacified by merely hearing the sound of the wind chime. So Mommy used a back-scratcher stick to hit the windchime. After demonstrating how it was done, Mommy gave Juan Or the back-scratcher stick for Juan Or to hit the wind chime. Mommy thought this was good practice for Juan Or to improve his hand-eye coordination. First few hits were not accurate, so Mommy held Juan Or’s hand to hit directly on the wind chime. After that, Juan Or tried himself and finally he hit the target. Then Juan Or started waving the back-scratcher stick wildly and the next thing Mommy knew was that the stick entered from the top corner of the gap between Mommy’s spectacles and right eye and it hit right onto Mommy’s eye!

(The back-scratcher stick and the wind chime.)

Mommy quickly snatched the stick from Juan Or, put him down and inspected the eye. No blood shot eye. Image was still clear. But blinking the eye caused a sensation like that of having something stuck in the eye. This sensation went on the whole night through. Mommy’s right eyelid swelled and became teary and watery and a bit red too. Mommy’s right nostril became blocked and runny as well because of the tears that flowed into the nose. Mommy just can’t help closing the right eye because keeping it open would require Mommy to blink the eye which results in the irritating sensation. And yet keeping one eye open and one eye close is tiring. So what other better thing to do than to just go to sleep and hope the swelling subsides the next day. Anyway, by then, Juan Or was already asleep, so Mommy went to sleep too.

(Oww.....can't help closing the eyes!)

The next day, however, the condition did not improve. Mommy decided not to go to work because Mommy could hardly keep the eyes open, let alone to drive to work. So Father-in-law drove Mommy to visit the doctor. After telling the doctor what happened, the doctor checked Mommy’s right eye. Using the torchlight, the doctor instructed Mommy to look up, look down, look left and then look right. Finally, the doctor said, “Your cornea is not scratched.” The moment Mommy heard this, Mommy felt relieved. “But your eyelid is. I’ll give you an eyedrop to apply once in every 4 hours, and some medicine for the swelling and pain. The eyedrop is the antibiotic to prevent infection. If the pain doesn’t go away by tomorrow evening, then come back to me again for checking and I’ll refer you to an ophthalmologist.”

After paying for the medical fee (RM35), Father-in-law and Mommy left the clinic. Back at home, Mommy applied the eyedrop and slept a lot – because the eyes felt better to be closed. Mommy can’t do much reading. Even at this time that Mommy is typing this posting, Mommy’s right eye has to close and from time to time, Mommy has to close both eyes to rest. Mommy’s right eye is wet all the time now because tears just flow uncontrollably. Mommy hopes things will be better by tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Climbing Up the Stairs

Somewhere around 2 weeks ago, ever since Juan Or was able to walk around while holding on to furniture, Juan Or became adventurous enough to want to climb up the stairs. Of course, initially Juan Or's climb was rather wobbly, slow and very careful, but two weeks worth of practice has made Juan Or an expert climber! Juan Or is now able to climb fast (though he has the habit of hanging around a step whenever he feels like it) and has very few slips. Of course, Mommy has to be around to supervise his climb in case he falls - what's more the stairs are not the solid type (i.e., has 'holes'!). That is why Mommy was not able to capture Juan Or on video during the initial stairs-climbing stage - both of Mommy's hands had to stand by to 'catch' him if he falls. Even then, now that Mommy has the chance to capture this video, Mommy's other hand stood by just in case.

Whenever Juan Or climbs the stairs, halfway through, he will peep through the 'holes' of the stairs to look for Grandpa (who is downstairs watching television most of the time!). Then Juan Or will give one kind of laugh (the shrill laugh) to attract Grandpa's attention to look up at his direction. And from the tone of his laughter, Mommy knows Juan Or purposely laughed like that to tell anyone downstairs that "Hey, look at me! I may be small, but I can already climb up the stairs just like anyone else in the family!" Yes, Mommy knows...this is Juan Or's show-off laugh which is very different from all his other laughs. Watch this video (the show-off laugh is at the beginning):

Monday, May 25, 2009

Tips on How to Deal With Toddlers Who Refuse to Let Go of Kiddy Rides

On the night of last week Friday, Papa and Mommy decided to take Juan Or out for a joyride, since Juan Or loves to go for kai-kai (outings)! First we drove over to Kuchai Lama area because Mommy wanted to window shop in 100 Yen Shop. After Kuchai Lama, we went back to Sri Petaling and stopped over in Sri Petaling's The Store because Mommy wanted to compare the price of the PediaSure that Mommy bought a few days ago in Pasar Mini Wah Seng (Jalan Sepadu, off Old Klang Road).

Initially, when we were still in the car, Papa and Mommy didn't want Juan Or to ride on those kiddy rides in The Store because we knew Juan Or would protest strongly when we wanted to remove him. However, once there, after imagining just how cute Juan Or looks in those kiddy machines, we decided to let Juan Or sit in one. Of course, we did not put any coins, but Juan Or still seemed to enjoy sitting in there (a low back car).
(Riding in the low back car.)
Then we shifted Juan Or into another kiddy machine, this time was a police motorbike. During the shifting process, Juan Or showed some resistance, but eventually he cooled down when he landed on the other kiddy machine.
(Riding on the police motorbike.)
Then we decided to let him try sitting in other kiddy machines of other shapes whice are found at the other end of the supermarket. So the next one was a helicopter and then finally to an aeroplane (to which Papa and Mommy decided to put in coins to enhance his experience!).
(Riding on the helicopter.)
("Hey! I want to ride on the aeroplane one!")
When the aeroplane started to move, Juan Or seemed bewildered. He must be thinking why his vehicle moved by itself! Look at how Juan Or reacted when the aeroplane started moving:

In all the shifting process from one machine to another, Juan Or did not show any resistance. Even after the moving aeroplane experience, Juan Or did not show any resistance when Mommy lifted him out. So Mommy considers this a serendipity tip - a tip which Mommy found by accident - what to do if your kid refuses to let go of kiddy rides and you don't want your kid to kick up any fuss. Of course, the most common approach by most parents is to distract the kid with something else and eventually the kid forgets about the kiddy ride. However, Mommy discovered that if you shift your kid from one kiddy machine to another to another to another, eventually the kid will think that whenever you lift him out from the machine, you will put him in another......until finally you lift him out and continue walking and walking and walking, your kid will think that you are walking to another kiddy machine somewhere in the supermarket. And along the way, when your kid saw something else, eventually he forgets about the kiddy machine! Voila! No fuss! But of course, for this trick to work, you need to make sure the supermarket has several kiddy machines within the same vicinity.

How about other daddies and mommies out there? How do you handle such situation when your kid refuses to let go of kiddy rides?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Juan Or Finally Discovered How to Open the Bottle Cap

In the past, whenever Juan Or fiddled with bottles, somehow Juan Or knew that the cap can be detached from the bottle. So to satisfy him, Mommy would somewhat loosen the cap and gave to Juan Or to handle. Juan Or would then pull the cap till the cap detached from the bottle. Of course, the thread of the bottle would be the barrier that impeded his effort to directly pull out the cap. Mommy even showed Juan Or how to twist the cap open, however, his primitive method still got the better of him.

At least that was how Juan Or opened bottle caps till on last week Friday morning. Mommy merely handed him the bottle without showing him anything. All Mommy did was loosen the cap a little and left the rest for Juan Or without expecting much. And much to Mommy's surprise, all of a sudden, Juan Or made a few inward strokes with his left hand, using the last three fingers to momentarily create twisting effects on the bottle cap and sure enough, the bottle cap turned and detached from the bottle! Watch this video:

Of course Mommy was delighted to see this development and so twisted the cap back onto the bottle (but not too tight though) and Juan Or did the same trick and the bottle cap came out again. Juan Or was very happy too to be able to show off to Mommy about his new skill! Then Mommy repeated the same thing, this time, Mommy handed the bottle to Juan Or in such a way that the bottle cap side faced his right hand (Mommy wanted to test Juan Or's handedness!). So how did Juan Or handle this? He reorientated the bottle so that his left hand faced the bottle cap side again and then went on with his trick. So looks like Juan Or is a left-handed boy just like Mommy!

That evening, Mommy asked Juan Or to show off his new skill to Papa. Papa was delighted to see this too. However, Papa screwed the bottle cap just a little tighter to challenge Juan Or. Juan Or, on realising that the cap felt tighter, showed one kind of facial expression, but he went on trying to twist it open. Finally when the cap opened, Juan Or was pleasantly surprised! Watch this video:

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Birthday Card for Juan Or from Wyeth

Somewhere in March 2009, Mommy sent an application card found in a "Milk for Life" booklet published by Tesco and Wyeth to join Wyeth Mama Club for a free one-year membership. No scoop is required as proof of purchase because this is only exclusive for Tesco customers. Anyway, Mommy already has a record with Wyeth when Mommy was still pregnant with Juan Or. During those pregnant days, Wyeth sent Mommy free samples of their milk for pregnant mothers. Along the way, Wyeth also sent Mommy a foam photo frame with the Mama theme. In that letter, Wyeth mentioned that they will later send another photo frame (with 1 year old theme) when baby turns one year old, and some more later on, another photo frame when the child is older (can't remember how old, but probably is 4 years old). The plan is that all the three photo frames are supposed to interlock each other into a cycle so that you can see how the baby develops throughout time. However, the 2nd photo frame has yet to come....don't know whether Wyeth even remember what they promised in their letter or not!

(The foam photo frame meant for pregnancy stage photos but Mommy prefers to use a photo together with Juan Or instead. Notice that the vertical sides of the frame are 'jagged' so that it can be interlocked with similar photo frames to form a cycle.)

Then somewhere in early May 2009, Mommy received a redemption information booklet from Wyeth to tell members how they can redeem gifts as they consume Wyeth's line of dairy products. Hahaha.....this is typical marketing effort just like what Dutch Lady sent to Mommy before! The only difference is that Dutch Lady has always been an early bird whereby Dutch Lady sent Mommy the redemption booklet as early as when Juan Or was still 4 to 6 months old - way before Juan Or can start drinking the growing up milk.

Early this week, Juan Or received a one-year-old birthday card from Wyeth through the post. The smart thing about this birthday card is that the card serves as a door knob hanger. In that way, recipient won't see it as simply another birthday card, and thus more likely to keep it as a souvenir.

(The birthday card-cum-doorknob-hanger.)

Together with the mail, Juan Or was given advertorial leaflets showcasing their growing up milk supplemented with lutein (nutrien for the eyes) and 2 coupons - one is a free Kindermusik class at Selangor Institute of Music (SIM) without any obligations and 2 free extra classes if you sign up for 2 semesters; and the other coupon is a free Tumble Time session (with no obligation to buy or sign up for anything) at Tumble Tots and 1 month of free session if you sign up as member. Both coupons are valid for 3 months only.
(The Selangor Institute of Music coupon.)
(The Tumble Tots coupon).
So that's what you call as colaborative marketing.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Visit to the Paediatrician: Conflicting Parenting Issues Resolved

Today was Juan Or's appointment for the MMR (Measles, mumps and rubella) jab. Of course, before entering the paediatrician's consultation room, the nurse asked to weigh Juan Or's body weight, which turned out to be 8.1 kg - much to Mommy's dismay. Here's a history of Juan Or's body weight records:

Birth: 3.38 kg
1st month: 4.87 kg
2nd month: 6.06 kg
3rd month: 6.59 kg
4th month: 6.80 kg (first sign that Juan Or's body weight gain rate is slowing down already)
5th month: 7.12 kg
6th month: 7.35 kg
7th month: 7.60 kg
1 year (present): 8.10 kg

Finally, we were called into the consultation room and the pediatrician prepared the jab for Juan Or. Then he handed Juan Or a Barney soft toy about almost as big as Juan Or. He asked Juan Or to hug the Barney and then pressed Barney's paw which triggered a music to play. The pediatrician injected Juan Or with no time at all and Mommy was sure Juan Or didn't even realize that he was jabbed. After that, Mommy asked the paediatrician whether Juan Or's body weight gain was alright or not and the paediatrician immediately said,"It's gone case!" "Oh, dear," Mommy thought. So looks like the HUKM's pediatrician's recommendation that Juan Or's solid food be added with butter and cheese did not significantly help to increase Juan Or's body weight. So the present pediatrician recommended that Juan Or's milk be changed to PediaSure (Abbott Laboratories) for 3 months. The paediatrician said that PediaSure is a kind of formula milk that contains higher calories than other normal growing up milk and is meant for catch-up growth. After that, there were a series of questions and answers between Grandpa (who also accompanied Mommy and Juan Or into the consultation room), Mommy and the paediatrician. So Mommy has listed down the questions and answers here for everyone's benefit:

Q: Is it alright to change baby and toddler's milk powder brand?
A: Of course if you are already comfortable with the brand you are using, then might as well stick to it. But from the paediatrician's own experience, he said that his own children had used many brands before (Mommy is not surprised since paediatricians receive all sorts of free sample milk powder from various companies!) to which there was no detrimental effect.

Q: Can bathing at night cause the baby or toddler to get chills?
A: There's no right or wrong answer to it, although traditionally people don't bath babies/toddlers at night for fear of getting chills. The main thing is that if the child can take the night bath without any detrimental effects, then by all means, you can continue to bath the baby at night. But if the child can't take it, then don't.

Q: Is it alright to start disciplining (verbal discipline, not physical punishment) a child from as young as 1 year old?
A: Yes, of course. Recommended is to say with firm tone of voice. If you don't start disciplining now, soon the child is going to go over your head (and shit there!).

Q: At what age is it alright to start using children toothpaste on your child?
A: As long as your child knows how to spit, you can start using it already. The peadiatrician's own children started using it from one-and-a-half years old. The paediatrician also said that even if the child swallowed some of the toothpaste, it's alright. The manufacturer has already put that in mind when formulating the children toothpaste. If the child can't spit yet, then suffice with brushing teeth using a finger-held baby toothbrush and water only.

These questions above (except the toothpaste question) stem from differences in opinions, preferences and practices between Mommy and the In-Laws. Mommy hopes these questions and answers help (in some way or other) fellow readers out there who may experience the same conflicting issues that Mommy is currently facing with the In-Laws.

Finally, we left the clinic after Mommy paid RM70 for the MMR jab. Later in the day, Mommy single-handedly took Juan Or out to a bank in Overseas Union Garden (OUG) to settle some transactions and then headed to a Chinese medicine hall (Pasaraya Wah Seng at Jalan Sepadu, off Old Klang Road) to buy a tin of PediaSure. The PediaSure which is 900 g, vanilla-flavoured and contains FOS and prebiotics, costs RM55.90. From now on, Mommy (with Juan Or around) will do things as single-handedly and as independently as possible - don't want anyone (except Papa) to tag along or accompany Mommy and Juan Or if possible, because it's time to take charge of our own family's life and to take pride in how we manage ourselves and our young family!

Catching Up with the Last Day of the Big Bad Wolf Sale

Monday (18th May 2009) was the last day of the Big Bad Wolf Book Warehouse Sale. Knowing that Big Bad Wolf replenished their books on every day of the sale, Mommy can't resist making it for the last day.

Mommy arrived there at about 4pm and was lucky enough to find a free parking lot along the street not far away from the Dataran Hamodal Building. So what did Mommy find there? There were not so much people there by then. Most of the attractively priced books were gone, but the Princess's Diary books were still there. Mommy's close colleague also asked Mommy to help buy children books on her behalf, to which Mommy could only find 4 books for her: 2 board books (each for RM5) and 2 soft cover children storybook (one is a Barney book at RM5 and the other is Over the Hedge at RM2). All other children books left were either not value for money or were torn/folded/crumpled. As for parenting books, Mommy found some more titles that Mommy didn't see during those past days that Mommy was there. Here's Mommy's yield of the day:
Left: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer, paperback for RM8.
Right: Zorro, full colour comic novel book in thick glossy pages for RM5 (for Juan Or to read when he's much older!).
Left: Managing Your Toddler's Behaviour, paperback for RM8.
Right: Breast is Best, paperback for RM8. Although Mommy is in the process of weaning Juan Or, however, Mommy finds this book a good read (gives Mommy the confirmation that Mommy was doing breastfeeding right!) because this book also addresses the issue of breastfeeding toddlers (like what Juan Or is now). By the way, this book came without any price tag at all and Mommy must commend the Big Bad Wolf cashier who attended to Mommy who exercised good judgement in giving the price as RM8 also. Otherwise, a cashier who is too rigid would resort to getting other staff to check the price and in the process, made the customer wait and wait and wait. Kudos to Big Bad Wolf's staff!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

More books, books, books! All in the Crescent Warehouse Sale!

On 15th May 2009, Mommy went to another book warehouse sale. This sale is held by Crescent News (What!? Never heard of before!) who claimed that it is the biggest book wholesaler in Malaysia. The sale is on from 15th to 24th May 2009, from 10am to 9pm at the MBPJ Multi-purpose Hall, Jalan BU3/1 Bandar Utama, Petaling Jaya. By the way, Mommy got to know about this sale firstly from Crescent News' advertisement in The Star newspaper's Metro section, and secondly from Malaysia's Shopping n Sales website.

This venue is not difficult to find - it's somewhere behind One Utama Shopping Centre (though not directly behind), but is located within a residential area. Parking in the MBPJ Multi-purpose Hall compound is free. Upon entering the sale area, there was not much crowd (Mommy went in the morning though) and there's no air-conditioner, but there are fans at about almost everywhere in the hall - so be expected to sweat when rummaging through the books there. What about payment counters? There are only two cashier counters and both counters can handle both cash and credit card transactions. However, to use credit card, you need to make sure your purchase value is RM50 and above. By the way, Mommy noticed that the cashiers probably looked like the owners of Crescent News and that they are Indian Muslims.

What about the books there? There were many variety of books ranging from general interest to self-help, to business, recipe books, medical books and Islamic books, except for parenting books. Notably, there were lots of children books. Since this is a parenting blog, of course Mommy's focus is on children books. Quite a number of children books are still expensive after the so-called discount. Even some children books appear not to have discount at all or are even more expensive than the price offered by MPH Bookstores. Mommy also noticed that their price-tagging is not consistent. For example, one pile of children book was price-tagged as RM20. Then, later, elsewhere in another rack, the same title of children book pile was price-tagged as RM15! And this happens not only for that title that Mommy saw, some other titles were also inconsistent in pricing. For example, a hard-cover colourful children book that Mommy bought for RM3 was later seen in another rack for RM5! For those really cheap and good buys of children books, you really have to rummage through from rack to rack. By the way, Mommy saw the Ladybird books (Peter and Jane type) sold for RM6.90 each; foam board books for RM5 each. The books publishers for children books ranges from local to overseas and some books are published in India.

This is how the environment of the book warehouse sale looks like. So you have to really rummage through the disorderly piles and piles of books in the racks to get books at bargain prices. However, those books that are arranged in neat piles are usually not cheap enough even after the so-called discounts.

Anyway, these are Mommy's yield of the day:

All these are hard-cover, full color, thick good quality paper children books, each at RM3 only! These books are at real bargain prices considering that the recent MPH Distributor's Warehouse Sale sold soft-cover full-colour children storybook at RM3 also. The book at the bottom right (with teddy bear picture) is the open-the-flap-book type. For the book at the bottom left (man playing the fiddle), Mommy saw the same book in other rack, price tagged at RM5. So Mommy grabbed the RM3 one! Woo-hoo!
Activity books by Php Publishing, thick good quality paper, each at RM3! The book on the right comes with stickers also.

Large board storybooks, each at RM5 only! Each book has 40-something pages, all in full-colour and large word print (as shown in the photo below), which is really value for money at RM5. However, the books were dusty to which Mommy merely used a wet cloth to wipe away the dust upon reaching home.

Noddy Annual Book 2004 priced at RM5 only (hard-cover). In it are attractive full-colour illustrations for every 'paragraph' of text - something like young children's comic book.

Ladybird books, each at RM3 only! However, those Ladybird books priced at RM3 are only limited to these titles. Other Ladybird books are priced at RM6.90 each (to which Mommy didn't buy because the offer is not atttractive enough).

Biography books on great scientists, each at RM3 only! These books are of the same size as Ladybird books, in hard-cover and meant for older children (about age 10-12 years).
On the left are Disney storybooks, each at RM3! The books on the right are also at RM3 each. All the books are the same size as Ladybird books and in hard-cover.
Lord of the Rings Trilogy storybook priced at RM10, soft-cover but with thick glossy pages, and photo illustrations of scenes in the actual movie.

A history book of ancient civilizations meant for older children priced at RM10. The book is hard-covered, in good quality paper with quite attractive arrangements of illustrations and text, and the book is published in India.

Children mystery and adventure storybooks, all in paperback, each for RM1 only! A good buy! Mommy also saw Nancy Drew paperbacks selling for RM2 each (but Mommy didn't buy them because Mommy didn't think Juan Or might be interested in Nancy Drew).

These are hard-cover, colour glossy page storybooks meant for children at ages 4-10 years, each at RM5. Each book comes with achievement stickers for parents to 'award' children with.
This box set contains 4 books: one is a board storybook, one is a pop-up storybook book, one is a push-out-and-play model book, and one is a lift-the-flap storybook. Mommy bought the box set at RM6. Actually all other box sets of the same title are price-tagged as RM10, but Mommy saw only one with the RM6 price tag, so Mommy grabbed it! Woo-hoo!

Mommy' s overall conclusion: This warehouse sale gives very good bargains too if you really spare time to rummage through the books and choose wisely, of course! Overall, this sale is about at par with the Big Bad Wolf (except that both sales have different strengths) and much better off in bargains than the MPH Distributor's Warehouse Sale.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Books! Books! Books! All at the Big Bad Wolf Warehouse Sale!

When it comes to books warehouse sales, Mommy just can't resist them! The most recent book craze that Mommy experienced is at the Big Bad Wolf Warehouse Sale. What's that? Never heard of! Well, Mommy has never heard of Big Bad Wolf too, but Mommy saw it in Malaysia's Shopping n Sales website. In that website, there's also a link that leads to an article write-up about this sale. The main points that interest Mommy is that the books ranges from as cheap as RM5 to as expensive as RM20 only. RM20 only!? Wow, Mommy must go to this sale!

So Mommy went to the Big Bad Wolf Sale held in 2nd floor of Dataran Hamodal at Jalan Bersatu 13/4, Section 13, Petaling Jaya. The sale starts from 14th to 18th May 2009 at 10am to 9pm. Parking wise? If you are lucky, you get to park at the road side for free. If not, there's a public parking area just along the same road that charges RM1 per hour (that where Mommy parked!). Going into the sale section, the area is not overly crowded, is air-conditioned and there were lots of books in which some were neatly arranged, but most were not (probably due to the customers themselves!). There are also 6 (if Mommy didn't count wrongly!) cashier counters, with separate counters for those paying by cash or by credit card. If you happen to own an OCBC credit card, you will get a 10% discount on your purchases. The only not-so-good thing about this sale is that customers are not provided with baskets or boxes to carry while rummaging through the books. In fact, customers have to find the boxes themselves, probably by asking from the staff. So in the end, Mommy carried all those books all the way through. However, Mommy did notice that their staff do help customers (who bought really, really a lot) to cart their purchases to their cars. So Mommy's advice to others who are planning to go is to bring your own baskets, bags, boxes, carts and what not to assist in your quest for books. By the way, the books on sale are new and not dusty.

What about the selection of books? Paperback novels are aplenty (mostly at RM8 each, though some at RM5), children's books (variable prices) are plenty too, though not as much choices like that in the recent MPH Distributor's Warehouse Sale. There are also computer books (RM12 each), parenting books (RM5, mostly at RM8 and RM10), recipe books (RM5) and biographies (mostly at RM8 each). There are also other categories of books there but Mommy did not pay too much attention. About the parenting books, Mommy must say Big Bad Wolf has quite a good selection here - the titles offered are very interesting so much so Mommy can't resist buying a number of them!

Here's Mommy's yield of the day:

Left: Open Season Annual 2007 (hardcover, full colour pages) at RM5.
Right: Over the Hedge movie storybook for older children (hardcover, full colour pages) at RM8.

Left: Pokemon Diamond and Pearl Annual 2009 (hardcover, full colour pages) at RM5.
Right: Over the Hedge storybook for younger children (softcover, full colour pages, large print) at RM2.

The World Almanac for Kids 2006 for only RM1 (which is a steal!). This book is a general knowledge-cum-fact book, so most of these facts won't go outdated within the next 10 years. Mommy likes the presentation of the contents (includes facts on science, history, solar system, culture, geography, entertainment, popular culture, etc), which Mommy thinks will appeal to bigger kids.

Left: Tales from the Crypt comic book, softcover, full colour in thick glossy pages for RM5.
Right: Barney books - The New Babysitter, boardbook storybook for RM5.

Left: Stir-fries - Best Ever Wok and Pan Recipes, softcover, full one-page photo for every recipe, thick glossy pages for RM5 only!

Right: The Genius Factory - The Curious History of the Nobel Prize Sperm Bank, softcover paperback which Mommy found in the Biographies section, for RM8. Mommy is keen on this book because Mommy was trained in the reproductive biotechnology area.

Left: The Contented Baby's First Year, hardcover, full colour thick glossy pages for RM10 only. Although Juan Or is already past his first year, however Mommy finds this book an irresistable read for an irresistable price!

Right: The Sleepeasy Solution - The Exhausted Parent's Guide to Getting Your Child to Sleep Through the Night, softcover paperback for RM10. This book is just what Mommy needs where Juan Or's sleep is concerned!

Clockwise from top left: When Your Baby Won't Stop Crying - A Parent's Guide to Colic (softcover, RM8), Coping with Crying and Colic - An Easy-to-follow Guide (softcover, full colour, thick glossy pages, RM8), Gina Ford's Top Tips for Contented Babies & Toddlers (softcover, more like a pocket book, a bit expensive in Mommy's opinion, nevertheless Mommy finds this a good read, RM8), Your Toddler's Development (softcover paperback, RM8).

Left: When Your Baby Cries - 10 Rules for Soothing Fretful Babies and Their Parents (softcover paperback, RM8).

Right: Playskool Guide to the Toddler Years (softcover paperback, RM8)

Finally, after paying for the books, Big Bad Wolf gave Mommy free Big Bad Wolf bookmarks.

Mommy's overall conclusion: What you see in the photos are good buys (in Mommy's opinion, except unless indicated in the caption). Most of the books are cheap, though some are not cheap enough. Many children's books, though are not too cheap. You really have to choose wisely to get your money's worth. But, on the whole, though, this sale is WAY, WAY, WAY BETTER than MPH Distributor's Warehouse Sale!

Coming next is Mommy's quest for the next book warehouse sale held by Crescent (never heard of again!) in Bandar Utama. Watch out for Mommy's posting of the next book warehouse sale adventure!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Teething Pains? Night Time Terror? How a Child's Incessant Crying Brings Out Conflicts in Child-raising

In the wee hours of the morning, Juan Or was acting cranky again, with all the fretfulness and crying spells. At first, when Mommy rocked Juan Or to sleep at 10.30 p.m., Juan Or appeared to be an angel (or so Mommy thought!). Finally, at 2 a.m., Juan Or woke up from sleep (but still drowsy) and Mommy woke up too to breastfeed him. Finally, Juan Or dozed off after breastfeeding and Mommy put him back into the spring cot. What seemed like a peaceful sleep thereafter turned out the total opposite about 30 minutes later - Juan Or started crying loudly and it sounded like a furious cry. Several questions ran into Mommy's head. Is Juan Or's cry part of his midnight terror dream? Or is Juan Or feeling the teething pains? Or worst of all, did Juan Or not drink enough milk just enough? But deep down in Mommy's heart, the last option is the most highly unlikely one, otherwise Juan Or wouldn't have dozed off while breastfeeding.

The cry went on and on no matter how Mommy tried comforting Juan Or and no matter how Mommy rocked him. Finally Grandma came down to attend to him too. Grandma took over the rocking while Mommy returned to sleep on the sofa. Juan Or seemed pacified a little, but there were still short cries in between those pacified moments - could Juan Or be reminded of the midnight terror dream off and on? Finally Grandma took Juan Or out of the spring cot because of the continuous crying. Grandma managed to pacify him and by then Juan Or was wide awake. Mommy recalled being half asleep on the sofa while Grandma 'entertained' Juan Or's playtime. This went on till 4 a.m. when Grandma decided that playtime's over and rocked him to sleep.

At 7.05 a.m., Juan Or woke up again with slight fretfulness. So Mommy took him upstairs to breastfeed. Mommy can't breastfeed downstairs anymore because Brother-in-law was around. As Mommy took Juan Or upstairs, Juan Or started crying and fretting. For what reason? Mommy thought Juan Or was probably impatient - not being able to feed immediately upon seeing Mommy. Finally, upon reaching upstairs, Mommy offered him the breast, but he still refused - crying and wailing loudly. And Mommy was trying hard not to get angry with him. So Mommy put him onto the bed and tried comforting him, but to no avail. The crying went on and on - sounded more like a bad-tempered cry! Then, Father-in-law came up to ask Mommy to pass Juan Or to him to be brought downstairs again. Mommy did, but Mommy had mixed feelings. It was a feeling of dissatisfaction that Mommy's way of handling Juan Or got interfered by other family members. It was also a feeling of anger-of-sorts that Mommy was not able to pacify him. It was also a feeling of anger towards Juan Or for being so irritable - spoilt perhaps! It was also a feeling of anger that showed itself after the anger was suppressed for some time.

By the time Mommy went downstairs again, Juan Or was already in Grandma's arms and pacified. Mommy went near him to 'scold' him for acting difficult. Father-in-law told Mommy not to scold him because he is just a little kid. Mommy got irritated and replied that whether the child is little kid or big kid, the child has to know what behaviour is acceptable and what is not. If a little kid doesn't learn that, when will the child ever learn? Father-in-law kept quiet. On top of it all, with the Grandma keep on saying sorry to Juan Or whenever Juan Or frets, wouldn't take eventually make the child think that the world owe him a living? And that the child can act in whatever way he likes and expect others to succumb to him? Wouldn't it be like that?

Conflicts in child-raising....there is no one hard-and-fast way of dealing with this issue, especially when you are staying with extended family members. Finally, Mommy drove to work with the mind still thinking about what happened. One thing for sure is, Father-in-law and Mother-in-law will stick to their way of child-raising whereas Mommy will stick to her own way. And Juan Or will still get to have things his way.....

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday, Juan Or!

Today is Juan Or's 1st birthday. Today is also the day Juan Or is officially a TODDLER! Here, in this posting, Mommy rekindled back the memories from the day Juan Or was born to the day he is today. Mommy has inserted photos of Juan Or from birth to the present to show the world how much Juan Or has grown within one year. Enjoy!

(When Mommy was heavily pregnant with Juan Or.)

(On the day Juan Or was born - 12th May 2008)

(1 week old)

(1 month old)

(2 months old)

(2+ months old)

(3 months old)

(4 months old)

(5 months old)

(5+ months old)

(6 months old)

(7 months old)

(8 months old)

(9 months old)

(10 months old)

(10+ months old)

(11 months old)

(1 year old!)