Sunday, July 26, 2015

Nesting mode

My nesting mode started a few weeks back but was escalated when I hit 24 weeks. We started with a trip to IKEA right after raya since Adam was on his long raya leave. Main point is to get an idea on how the room would look like. Since we are staying with Adam's parents until our apartment is ready, BabyIJ would be sharing our bedroom which is totally fine with us. 

Now, the problem is that the room that we're staying now used to be Adam's when he was still single. The condition? Lets just say that posters from his teen years with a row of dinosaurs are still there. Now with BabyIJ on the way, we decided it is time to wave goodbye to Adam's bicycle/skate posters. I have no idea why I didn't bother about it before but thanks to the baby, we are finally upgrading our room (Mommy owes you one, BabyIJ)

The trip to IKEA was a success as we get many ideas and it made us both excited to start right away. But first, to paint the room. 

What color should it be? Started off with inspiration photos from Pinterest ( you have to love the Internet for this!) At first we decided to make the tv wall a darker shade to give it a cinema like feel to the room but it would make the room smaller. 

I did tell Adam right away that I wanted yellow for the room following my yellow raya craze. Yeap, still not over it. Yellow and grey is such a good combination, no? 

Im also a fan of soft lilac. So calming.. 

After going through our choices, we decided to go with a soft buttery yellow and lilac. Felt pretty nervous about the combination but I can't wait to share how the room will look like complete with the new deco and all. One of the deco that would be a part of BabyIJ corner are these adorable cloud stickers from Ohmayesa. 

Draco approves the colour, I approve Adam's paintwork. Good job! 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Wheres the Glow?

Once you go into the second trimester, everyone would be telling you that you would have the 'glow'. Scientifically it is due to you producing more blood and such. Anyway, have you seen the movie 'what to expect when you are expecting'? If you have, then you would know that not all mommies-to-be would have the glow. Honestly when I had my first pregnancy, I don't have any glow. You could spot my tired face a mile away. Heck, someone even guessed I was pregnant judging from my tired face. 

Thankfully, I think I do have the glow in this pregnancy from the comments people often gave me over and over again. However, to me, it really boils down on how well you take care of yourself. Your skin probably needs more attention with the hormonal changes and all.

What's important is proper cleansing, toning, and moisturising

In this post, I would like to share my secret to a glowing skin. My favourite mai'amy serum. I first stumbled upon it when I started following this girl on instagram and she was one of the seller for the brand. I decided to try 2 bottles of diamond serum first, following a recommendation from her .

It worked like a charm. Never turning back. 

No glow you say? I create my own 'glow' thank you very much. Currently I am using the stem cell serum from the same brand and I honestly like it better than diamond serum. 

By the way, there's also a myth saying that when you are pregnant with a baby girl, it will drain out your natural glow and the opposite happens when you are pregnant with a baby boy. A theory that I can't really prove but hey, thanks for the 'glow' BabyIJ 

I ll be sharing my favourite cleansing products in the future. Can't wait to share but make sure you leave some for me when I go to Sephora! 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

16 weeks - All about the gender

... and then I hit 16 weeks

The checkup wasn't as nerve wrecking as my 8 weeks and 12 weeks. I guess once you've passed the first trimester, you can finally relax and be much more confident that your baby is safely tucked in your tummy. We also passed the Nuchal Translucency test which lowered lowered down the baby's risk of having Down Syndrome and some other chromosomal abnormalities, as well as major congenital heart problems. This test is of course optional. I guess you can discuss with your gynae on this test but it must be done precisely in the 12th week.  We decided to do it because .. well its our first baby.  You know how paranoid first time parents are ( Yeap, I guess we're that type of parents ) 

We also found out that we were going to have a boy on our 16 weeks check up. Baby IJ was really showing off his penis so I knew even before the doctor told us. You are an exhibitionist, huh BabyIJ. 

Adam was so excited and he also won the bet. Damn. Anyway it took me quite a few days to sink in that I am going to have a boy. A boy! The first question I asked myself is that 'What do boys wear?'. Like, seriously. Bye tutu skirts. I guess I ll see you when I have my second child ( I hope ) 

I found this online. Ain't that a cute baby dinosaur? I can't wait to bite your chubby cheeks, BabyIJ

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Belly Story

Recently a few people has been asking on how to maintain a no stretch mark bump (Hmm how do you know I don't have stretch marks? )

I've never really give a thought about it until me and my best friend, we were talking about it over our break time at Uni. The whole conversation really got me thinking. So i did some research via some pregnancy forums. My previous pregnancy I was using Bio Oil, and apparently based on the review in the forums, unfortunately it doesn't really work. Perhaps its good to lighten stretch marks and not to prevent them. I was looking at prevention rather than damage control. 

I decided to try the Mama Bee range from Burt's Bees. Even the name is cute, no? Mama Bee. Bzzttt. 

My first purchase was the belly butter. After using it for 2 months, I can safely say that I don't have any stretch marks yet. Phew. I usually apply a generous amount because the tub is huge! I can't possibly finish it in this pregnancy period. The fact that it has no parabens is a plus. Due to it also being all natural, it doesn't really have a pleasant smell (at least to me). It contains all the goodness of cocoa, shea and jojoba butters. The belly butter is so moisturising that your belly stays moist even the next morning. I apply it to my bump every morning after shower and every night before sleeping. It is priced at RM120.80.  Pricey but if it works, its worth the price. You really don't want to get any stretch marks, trust me. 

I've only recently added on the nourishing baby oil a couple of weeks back. Best decision ever. The SA specifically said that it would work better if I apply it right after shower. It did. Mind you I have really dry skin especially my leg area. Very prone to turn scaly. This product is god sent. My skin feels so moist and unlike the belly butter, it has a pleasant honey smell. Adam would always comment how nice I smell in the morning, thanks to this. This was priced at RM74. The only thing I dislike about the product is the packaging. The oil is prone to moist even the bottle. I often wrap it with tissue papers when I need to bring it along on my weekend trips to my mom's place. 
Overall the products by Burt's Bees' has exceeded my expectations. Thanking God that although I am allergic to it's range of lip balm, these two products are going to be my best friends for at least 3.5 months more and beyond. 

So if you ever want to give BabyIJ anything, feel free to give us the Baby Bee range (this is serious) 

Can't wait to share with BabyIJ the goodness of Burt's Bees.

Theres also a myth that if your mom has stretch marks then you'll have it too. I've checked my mom's belly. No stretch marks. Now lets hope the myth is in my favour 

Of Raya choices

I've always tried to save up way before Raya to get the outfits I like for Raya. Its a common practice as well to get them early so that I don't need to flock any bazaars for the purpose of preparing for Raya and I am a planner hence I plan ahead, naturally. Following some disappointments for tailor made clothes for Raya for many many years before this ( I never learn, do I?), my choices this year & last year would be mainly ready made. At least if I can't fit into them following my growing bump this year, I can return them in advance and ask for a much suitable size.  

So here are my choices 

1. A canary yellow outfit from Samantha Sherina by Thian. This was naturally my first choice due to its cheerful color. I also love the fact that I can wear the top as a shift dress for a more casual look. I corresponded with the owner and she was so lovely to give me an early bird discount. 

2. My second choice would be from Mimpikita. I ve been going to Mimpikita for a couple of years now. Their collection has never disappointed me. At first I wanted this really nice shocking pink top with ruffled skirt but decided to change to this dress instead because I couldn't think of anywhere to go with the ruffled skirt. It really is a beautiful skirt but yes nowhere to go with it. Perhaps I could save it for BabyIJ's aqiqah. Also bought the white top shown below because its really dainty and traditional, perfect for Raya. 

3. My final choice is a combination of white and baby yellow from Arared. It is also versatile as I can think of a hundred ways of using the top and bottom separately. I was so tempted to use the top before Raya. It really is so pretty. Love the sleeves and the skirt draping. 

Somehow this year, I was leaning more towards whites and yellows. Im pretty happy with my choices. Yes, still cannot afford Innaired and Yadotsa this year. Perhaps next year I'll be lucky enough to wear one of their collection for Raya. 

Oh yes, I bought 1 white songket kurung from Qamilla over the weekend. Yes WHITE again!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

8 weeks

Since I told myself that I would really like to jot down as much memory as I can about my pregnancy. Let me try to remember how my 8 weeks check up went. I remember being nervous. Like really nervous peeing all the time kind of nervous. That morning, we had an appointment with DEMC with Doctor Jumeah. The doctor was probably randomly set by DEMC when I called to make an appointment on my 5th week. My in laws wanted to come with and we had no problem about it. I was nervous mainly because if the doctor gave me bad news, we have to start all over again with the whole ordeal of wanting a baby and I can't possibly take another 'Sorry, your baby didn't survive/dont have a heartbeat.' 

So the main point for this appointment is to check on the BabyIJ's heartbeat. With the heartbeat, we will know that there is a baby in there and it is not an empty sac.

We were pretty early and was the first patient to see Dr Jumeah. Yes, the whole 4 of us came into the room so plus the doctor and nurse, there were 6 of us in the tiny room. The doctor didn't object the extra company of course knowing how important it must be for all of us to be there to witness the ultrasound. 

As I lay on the bed, the doctor proceeded with the cold gel and started scanning my womb. I remember Adam holding my hands and saying we're in this together. When I had my miscarriage 2 years ago, it was very unfortunate that I didn't have Adam around as he was in US for his annual trip. I was pretty much alone emotionally although my mom was with me throughout. 

Thanks mama. Forever will be grateful for that.

After much anticipation, lo and behold. BabyIJ, all grown up from the last time we saw him with a healthy heart beating on the screen ( future mommies, look for a flicker. Thats the heart) . Adam literally cried with joy while holding my hands tight ( I told you adam is more emotional than me.. he really is). 

It really is a miracle to see BabyIJ. 

I remember everyone beaming with happiness. Such a happy glow in that tiny room. 

Note: all babies look like a seahorse this young 

Monday, July 6, 2015

Hong Kong oh Hong Kong ( the search for accommodation)

I don't know where did we get the idea that Hong Kong would be cheap. Hmph

After much delay and discussion for months about the trip, mostly trying to determine when would be the suitable time to go to Hong Kong because I can't possibly go on my due date. 

The first thing we did was to check the season. Hong Kong can be very humid and can also be the total opposite of having heavy rainfall. Both can be uncomfortable to travel. Due to this we decided to move our trip to December, and since Hong Kong is known for its tremendous fireworks during NYE, we decided to spend our NYE too. This is to replace last year's NYE; me and Adam went to bed at 10 pm! I kid you not! 

We moved the tickets and it was a hefty sum to pay (for us anyway). But since this would be our only overseas trip... we should have the budget for it. 

Next, the search for accommodation

We decided to try Airbnb for the first time as the hotels in Hong Kong are really expensive, plus we would want to live among the locals as a change for this trip. 

I narrowed down some of the accommodation that I find suitable for us. Mostly small studios. Since we are both in the design industry, we re picky when it comes to the design of the apartments. Im also picky on the bed that they provide. All in all, it has to look clean, and close to the public transportation. It is very important that you read the reviews before enquiring/booking to avoid disappointment or images that could be deceiving. Always ALWAYS read the reviews.

Days and days of researching, we finally narrowed it down to two places and contacted the host on the availability

Choice 1 is a beautiful apartment and I LOVE the bedroom. However, the host has confirmed that the place won't be available for the dates that we wanted. Boo hoo. We would definitely want to try living here if we ever come to Hong Kong again with a couple of friends as it is huge for just the two of us. 

Choice 2 is a much simpler studio apartment. As you can see it has a small kitchen, a double bed, and enough space for us to move around. It is so cute and definitely has the characteristics of Hong Kong. Small tight space. A bonus for this studio is that it has a private balcony for us to enjoy as we please. Contacted the host and she approved our booking right away. She did warn that her apartment is on the 7th floor. Thats my cardio for 2016 and we need to pack light (yeah, right!)

Im looking forward to spending winter in Hong Kong! 

So, should we bring BabyIJ?

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Hong Kong oh Hong Kong

Well, truthfully we have never really thought over where should we go this year. Last year was filled up with many trips and we decided that we can go on ONE trip this year. After discussing for many months end of last year, we decided to go somewhere Asia since we haven't really been to all Asia countries. After weighing between Korea and HK, we decided to go to HK. Adam doesn't really fancy going to to Korea so feel free to let me tag along if any of you are planning to go to Korea. 

So, Hong Kong!

We are pretty much clueless about Hong Kong except for the fact that they have good halal dim sum and it is really dense in terms of buildings and people. I do worry if theres any language barrier as how we have experienced when we were in Uzbekistan. Seriously, we can't even order ice cream in Uzbekistan because we can't read the menu. After much thought, we decided to go to HK in November to give us ample time to prepare for the trip. Tickets booked and paid when we saw that MAS had a promotion of almost 50% the full price. 

But then... God has a better plan. He gave us a surprise in March. I got pregnant and my due date is in November, exactly on the dates that we have planned our trip. Lesson learned, NEVER plan too far ahead especially when you've decided to try for a baby. 

I'm thankful you came into our life BabyIJ. No trip is not worth postponing to accommodate you

Here is our very first photo of BabyIJ. This was taken when he was just a few weeks young. He was less than 1 cm. If you look carefully, he is that little bubble near the top. He is currently near to 30 cm at 22 weeks. 

and so with this little miracle, the planning for HK was put on hold and is to be continued .. 

A good night sleep

One of the first thing I wanted to buy when I became pregnant was the maternity pillow. I guess since I didn't get to do it the first time around, I decided that as soon as I hit second trimester which is noted as the 'safe' zone, I would get one. No matter how much it would cost. Adam also agrees I could have one because I kept stealing his bolster in the middle of the night.... 

So I went through my options; online and in stores, searching for the right one. One that I could use for this pregnancy and future (this really depends on how painful labor is) . 

The first store I went was spring maternity in BV 1, just because I go to bangsar every weekend (yes, i truly believe we should move to Bangsar). I wanted to see whether they have the dreamgenii pillow. Now this is a very popular brand and through my online research, theres many good reviews on how amazing it is and that you'll be tempted to use it even after you have given birth! Having said that, there are also bad reviews stating it doesn't do much and its a huge sum of money to be spending on a pillow. 

Now this is how the dreamgenii looks like 


As you can see, its a very simple pillow with supports dedicated for bump, back and leg. Since this is a popular choice among pregnant women and it has won several awards, I was leaning towards dreamgenii of course. It was priced at 300+, so i didn't get it instantly but decided to see whether I could have other options which has the same structure, but with a lesser price. I was also worried on how much space it would take! 

Theres also other options in mind such as the wedge which was much smaller. I somehow didn't like it because I would still like a pillow in between my legs. To place another pillow in between with the wedge and all seems pretty complicated. 

While the wedge was simple, I also came across this. It sure looks comfy and I have a king bed, I would definitely get this! But, it would take too much space on our queen bed and I wouldn't want to crowd Adam as I am already crowding him with my sleeping pattern of wanting to sleep as near as possible to him. 

I naturally chose the dreamgenii in the end of course. I was so relieved when we brought it home and tried it on the bed. It doesn't take too much space and I can gladly say that I have been sleeping much much better for nearly 3 months now. Adam also sleeps better because I no longer attempt to kidnap his bolster in the middle of the night. 

So if you have the budget, please do invest on one that would suit you. Its a miracle I can tell you that. 

p/s: Dreamgenii can also be converted into a nursing pillow when the baby comes. How cool is that? I ll have to write another review on how babyIJ would like it