Thursday, December 25, 2014

The Best Baby Bottle

I have experimented with several brands starting with Tommee Tippee, but it was not suitable for my baby, and the measurements on the bottle started to fade after several attempts at warming it in hot water. IMO, it was also difficult to hold and clean due to its shape. I then decided to go with Dr. Brown's 4-ounce glass bottles. I searched for glass baby bottles, and this brand instantly popped up. Since, TP has been in the cabinet. However, it (Tommee Tippee)is the best looking bottle out of the ones that are mentioned in this post.

Dr. Brown's glass bottles are amazing. They are sturdy and easy to clean. Its measurements are engraved so you won't have to worry about the numbers fading. Glass also warms up much quicker than plastic, which is a thumbs up for me because I heat up my bottles in hot water, and I am impatient. I liked these bottles so much that I purchased the 9 ounce when my baby could handle more milk. Couple of months later, however, leaking started. At first, it was a little, but it gradually built up. I could not stand it. That's when I began to use the Philips AVENT bottles gifted to me.

Contrary to some reviews about spilling, I never had this problem. Like most bottles, AVENT bottles come in 4-ounce and 9-ounce sizes. Like Tommee Tippee, I thought the measurements would fade, but I was wrong. Till this day, I am still using AVENT for my baby.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Mommy Blog- Podee's Hands-Free Bottle Review

I have wished there was a bottle like this before knowing such a thing even existed. I first saw it on a Facebook ad and told myself that I ought to get it for Jet even though he already has enough bottles. I predicted that with this, Jet would be less fussy during car rides. I also thought that it would train him to hold a bottle on his own quicker, thus allowing him to be more independent (bottle-holding wise). I'm quite concerned about the latter because he cannot hold a bottle on his own yet-- he would hold it for a few seconds and then let go-- I'm assuming he's just being lazy and dependent, but could this even be the case? Or perhaps it's my problem for not letting him practice enough?

In general, I expected this bottle to simplify things. Unfortunately, this did not work for us. I don't blame its quality though, but it just doesn't suit babies who are overly active, i.e. whose hands are always reaching for and grabbing things. When using this, I still have to hold it for Jet [in a feeding position], otherwise he'll spit out the nipple or pull/ grab the straw. In most cases, he does it all. Podia's hands-free bottle's nipple acts like a pacifier, but  I have never given Jet a pacifier due to sanitary and teeth concerns, as well as becoming a long-term habit. He's now almost 8 months, and judging from the way he treats this bottle, giving him a pacifier to soothe his fussiness now would not be a solution. I definitely left out this fact when getting this bottle. I also find the straw of this bottle difficult to clean.

Aside from the negatives, there are more positive reviews on Podee's hands-free bottle than the contrary. So I guess our situation is just a rare one. If this bottle works for your baby, it will make more room in your schedule.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Mommy blog- No Shoes for Baby Jet... just yet

A good read to change my mind on shoe shopping for Jet... just yet. Baby shoes are so adorable, but according to this article, it is best to hold off until the little one is ready to take their first steps. Meanwhile, there will be no baby converse for Jet :(

My son turned 7 months this week. He's a quick mobile learner and extremely active. He mastered crawling, sitting and standing (with furniture assistance) before 6 months, so I'm anticipating him to stand hands-free pretty soon, and to walk in no time. I wish everything in the house was soft and edge-free AKA baby friendly, but this is not 100% possible. He spends most of the time indoors, on the carpet, but my little explorer likes to take advantage of his superpower and crawl all over the place.

He owns one pair of chucks, which are a little loose on him anyways so they're just sitting on the shelves now. The reason I wanted him to wear shoes was to complete his outfit-- looking put together. Okay, I admit, and they're just simply adorable! Then I figured that he doesn't need them now since he spends most of his time in the house and he doesn't need to look **put together**... he's just a baby! Plus, the article I read helped me finalize my decision.

In the meantime, I am shopping for toys that will keep a baby busy/ amused for a longer period of time. My boy would rather play with my phone and the furniture AND everything that I say no to. He does not seem into his toys at all, no matter how colorful they are and what melody they make.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Labor and Delivery Story

Long version short, I have a new job. I'm a mom.
I delivered at the Huntington Memorial Hospital, Pasadena, CA

My delivery room
Difficult to get anywhere (restroom) with the IV attached to me

On my March 4th doctor's appointment, my doctor insisted that I go into labor that day. I was 39 weeks then. At first, I was neglectful because I wanted an all natural birth, but I had to go into labor in order to prevent a c-section; I could not wait another week. I got to the hospital around 2pm and was quickly put in the delivery room with the IV attached. Then, my doctor used an instrument to break my water (6:45pm). That was the messiest process and it did not get my contractions to start. Later that day, I was given oxytocin to start my contractions since breaking my water didn't do the job. Those were painful-- the contractions felt like menstrual cramps times fifty. 

I was in great, uncomfortable pain the whole night and it lasted all the way until the epidural, which was the next day at about 10am. At 1:30pm, my doctor finally gave me the OKAY to push.

I had my beautiful healthy baby boy on March 5 at 2:25pm. He weighed 7.67 pounds and was 20.5 inches long. My physician said the baby's size is relative to its mother's size. At 5'2 and 90 pounds (prior pregnancy), kudos to me for delivering a baby that size. I gained about 50 pounds throughout pregnancy and lost about 25 pounds first day postpartum. I didn't look fat. I received compliments that I looked better than before.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Mommy Blog- First Solids

I am very fortunate to have a baby who isn't a picky eater like his mama. I started feeding him solid food when he reached the 4-month mark, and he hasn't had an allergic reaction to anything or thrown up. His first sign of readiness was curiosity in what we're eating. Our pediatrician recommended stage 1 fruits and vegetables at this point and to exclude rice cereal. I purchased different types of Gerber's fruit and vegetable purees before making them myself. I prefer preparing everything myself so I know exactly what he's eating and to ensure freshness. Thanks to Baby Brezza, the art of making baby food is easier than I thought.
Baby Brezza-- Affordable and super easy to use, but I find the blades difficult to clean.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Mommy Blog- My Favorite Baby Products

No way am I representing myself as a professional baby product reviewer... just thought it would be fun to write about my favorite baby products. All are based on personal opinion. As a first time mom, creating a baby registry was a tough task because I was unsure of the definite needs vs. the don't-really-needs. I registered mine at Babies R Us and Target-- both offered helpful advice, but I realized that they were trying to sell everything. I am a frugal person, so I do not like purchasing things that I will not frequently use nor do want my friends to spend money on things that are just going to be covered in dust. I didn't have to worry about the latter, because my friends purchased products that I actually used. They knew better than I did! The following are my favorite products (so far)... all images belong to google xD

I also tried Huggies snugglers, but Pampers' swaddlers are much softer.

Dr. Brown's Natural flow glass bottles. The plastic option is also available, but I prefer glass. The only disadvantage is the mess after dropping it, but it has never happened to me. These bottles are easy to clean and easy to warm up. 

He started with tommee tippee, but the nipple flow was too fast for him. Sure, the flow could be replaced, but the measurements fade quickly. These are much lighter than Dr. Brown's glass though, so I will give them a try again for when he starts to learn to hold bottles.

Burt's Bees- I received this whole set and loved everything! I prefer these over Johnson's. The whole set smells amazing too.

Enfamil also has the 0-3 months version, which was what he started with. I have given him Similac and Gerber, but Enfamil worked best for him.

Carter's onesies in white! The material is soft and stretchy. I like them in white because they're easy to mix and match ;)

Madii & dyl sooki babe pillow. I came across this brand while searching for pillows that prevent flat heads. It's made of organic materials and is very soft. It's also perfect for babies who sweat a lot.

Bugaboo Cameleon. It also came with the bassinet, which is perfect for taking my baby outdoors. He's always calm and playful in the bassinet, and I feel safe letting him sleep in there. The stroller in general is very sturdy, yet heavy. It's also stylish! I like the extras such as umbrella, rain cover, mosquito cover, etc.... though I probably would never purchase the rain cover since I am living in LA. 

And that's it.... It's not much, but I am still experiencing. 

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Body- Pre and Post Pregnancy

Prior to giving birth, I was never worried about my body, my weight, despite all the constructive comments pointed at my skinniness. Those comments occurred before I started showing of course. However, my body mass was also way below the healthy range. I accumulated approx 45 pounds throughout my pregnancy-- from 93 to 138. My current weight is 120 and it has been almost two months after birth. I feel fat, nonetheless, my BMI is considered healthy for my age and height. I am still a size xs, which I am very thankful for. I don't look fat, but 93 and 120 is a huge difference. My goal is to go down to 105, but in a healthy way.

I was extraordinarily cautious in my food intake throughout my pregnancy- healthy fetal development was vital. Still, I lacked fruits and vegetables because I thought I had absorbed enough of those nutrients (folic acid) from my prenatal vitamins. I developed this extremely dark line down my stomach and it hasn't faded yet... a bit worried. I have never witnessed this, but my physician told me that some women develop that line on their face. Supposedly, it will disappear a few months after giving birth to the first baby, but after the third one, "FORGET IT", he (my physician) said.

I have also been hesitant to eat cold food, including beverages, after giving birth. I used to drink iced coffee/ tea almost every morning/ day prior to giving birth. In fact, warm beverages were off my list, but I am more cautious to what I consume now. I also switched to an all-organic diet. As much as I want a Starbucks mocha frappucino or a mango Jamba smoothie in this 100- degree temperature, I thank my son for giving me the motivation to stay away. In order for my son to lead a healthy lifestyle, I must start first. And aside from my other expectations for him, a healthy lifestyle is NUMBER 1 on the list.

Other than having a dark line down my belly, I also gained fat there. It's one of the most dangerous fats in that it is the hardest to rid. My initially plan was to burn it and flat it by doing more sit-ups than I can handle without losing my breath (emphasis), but before trying, I found out that it's not going to work-- NO. My next plan is to sign up for gym membership and take advantage of the group classes.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Newborn Shoot

Jet's first photoshoot. These were taken at the hospital and he was 2 days old. I plan on doing another shoot when he turns 6 months.

I'm falling more in love with this little guy each and every day <3

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Post-partum Recovery

Although I do not believe in Chinese confinement, being the good girl that I try to be, I am obeying my mother by following the traditional one month confinement. Well, I break many rules though, but I eat the 30-day confinement cuisine. I ordered the meals, but I don't believe that they're healthy due to their presentation. Traditionally, you cannot shower, bathe, and wash your hair for a whole month. However, I shower daily but I don't wash my hair. I have to debate and nag with my mom whenever my hair gets itchy and oily. In general, I believe in eating healthy. And of course, numerous other rules apply for this confinement theory. So while all my friends are playing in the nice hot weather, I am stuck at home not being able to wash my hair T_T

After doing much research in placentophagy, I decided to have my placenta turned into pills. Although not scientifically proven, many moms have reported positive results such as quicker and more milk supply, more energy, quicker recovery, etc. My placenta specialist adviced me to take two pills twice a day, morning and evening. I followed my instincts and take only 2 every morning, that's it. I experience more energy and a little boost in milk supply, but not being able to sleep throughout the day swells my eyes.

I gained 45 pounds throughout my pregnancy and have 20 more pounds to lose, which will put me at 100. After this recovery, I will start hitting the gym again, mainly for the yoga classes. I never liked my pre-pregnancy body anyway because I was too skinny; I was underweight and it wasn't the least bit attractive to be short and too skinny.

So far, the most challenging parts of being a mom are waking up in the middle of the night (1AM and 4AM for me) to the baby's cry, which means breastfeeding time. Once you have a child, it's impossible to be selfish and put yourself first. It's also guilty to be a lazyass that I used to be so comfortable being. Once you have a child, you're no longer the center of attention in your family and you can't be jealous. As much as I try to balance the dedication I put in school, work and my son, MY SON will always be first. It's an instinct.

So not in maternity clothes
36-Week Maternity Shoot

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Any Time Now...

Can be any time from now to three more weeks. Either or, I AM PREPARED. At this point, heartburns are extremely severe. I don't think they're in any way harmful, just very uncomfortable. I take probiotics every morning before breakfast, followed by a glass of warm water to prevent heartburns, but they only trick me into thinking that it's helpful. Then my doctor recommended me to take it again before dinner, but I only did it once. I'm almost there, so I'll just deal with it. A natural remedy is to stay away from rich foods and to eat several small meals throughout the day rather than the traditional BLD (breakfast, lunch, dinner). What works best for me is to drink something cold/icy. I know I sound ridiculous, but it cools the burns.

Salmon is the healthiest choice of fish due to its richness in omega 3 and complimentary goodies that aren't to my knowledge, but it's not my favorite fish. So, I substitute that with fish oil (bottom right). These fish oils are badass but they give me instant heartburns, whether I chew on them or take them with water.

Left: Probiotics
Right: Fish Oil

I have been staying at about 138 pounds this month and I don't think I will gain anymore... I still get hungry quickly, but my petite body can only handle so much weight. Total weight gain during these months is about 45 pounds, which is above average. I hope to be 105 after recovery.

My poor legs are suffering from the upper body weight, making walking difficult, especially those myriad night time bathroom trips. Recently, my fingers have been feeling swollen and they are numb every morning, but the numbness fades away quickly. My feet are also somewhat swollen, but very minor.

Some may argue that it's too risky and dangerous, but I am still a daily driver. I don't drive far and I only drive when needed. The worst that can happen is pulling over and dialing 911.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Some people... Should be forgotten and never forgiven. If they ever come kneeling in front of you at your house, grab a broomstick and show their way out. You don't want them AND you don't even need them. Run away!!!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

One year younger

Because it's better to think like an optimist. Didn't capture much moments from last night, but those moments will always be in my heart. I celebrated my 23rd birthday with most of my close friends. Thank you guys for coming out and thanks for the great night!! We pigged out at one of my favorite hot pot restaurants (Lu Gi).

After many many rounds...
Mommy bought me ice cream cake
Fruit tarts from my ladies

I am lucky to have them in my life. My birthday wish is for all of us to spend more time together and for all of us to be healthier and happier! 😘😘😘

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Sick, not fun

Really not in the best situation to be having a cold right now, but this cold is tough. I haven't been sick in over a year, and I believe it might be the new vitamins that I switched to. My old vitamins provided me with stronger immune support. I wanted to wash my car today but it's smarter to stay home and rest. I did however went for a Jamba run. My doctor told me to stay away from crowded public places because it's flu season right now. He warned me twice actually. I didn't listen completely and I have no excuse. With this cold going on, it's extremely difficult to sleep at night, including all the toilet trips in the middle of the night.
My favorite flavor- mango a go go

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Chilly Sunday morning

If you want to make a change, start by changing your lifestyle; and that is exactly what I am doing now. Despite my busy schedule, I have been sleeping earlier and waking up earlier than usual. This includes weekends. Not only do I get more hours of sleep, but I also get to eat breakfast instead of skipping to lunch or brunch, and I also get more things done in a day. Recently, my daily routines only consist of eating breakfast, work, eating lunch, work, and  going home to cuddle with my cozy blanket. I haven't been feeling like going out much except to satisfy my cravings.

Today's breakfast. I like dining at Garden Cafe because they don't use MSG.

I was initially planning to take spring semester off, but I noticed some conflicts, so I decided to add three online courses-- Sociology, Oceanography, and Physical Anthropology. Two of the courses already began, and I am looking forward to completion. In two months, my schedule will be doubled, but hopefully I won't regret adding these three courses.

For the meantime, I have much planning to do. Below are a few inspirations to aid me in an upcoming project... Looks like I'll have a lot of shopping to do.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

You can accomplish more than enough, more than necessary, in one day.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

This Body

This body can't wait to be back to normal again. Only two more months left. Make it three because I'll be confined at home like a sick patient for another month.

Leafy green veggies have been a daily consumption, but I still don't eat enough of it. I'm just not a big veggie person. I do love the way my mother prepares broccoli though. I'm also starting to like drinking milk (organic only), especially with my favorite cereal, which are Reese's Puffs. Warm water throughout the day is another routine. I no longer drink coffee, including decaf, but once in a while, I crave tea. Luckily, it has been chrysanthemum tea, because it's caffeine-free. I'm working on cutting down cold beverages, but overall, my body feels amazing and I have never been healthier.

Seven months ago, I was 95 pounds. I am 130 as of now and will continue to gain weight. It surprises me because I don't feel or look this heavy, and sometimes I think the scale is lying. On a bright note, I like where those baggages are going ;)