March 31, 2010

Bento post #124 – #130

Chocoloate flavoured mantou with heart-shaped cheesy cocktail sausage and rose apple.

Chicken nugget with potato wedges, and tomato ketchup in the blue tub, with two pieces of orange at the side.

Shell shaped pasta in Bolognese sause with guava slices in the shape of butterfly.

Pan fried chicken drummet with plain dinner roll and two pieces of apples. I had wanted to cut the skin in a checkered pattern but I abandoned the idea since I was running late.

Red bean pau with meatballs, and bear-shaped guava.

Fried rice with half a pear.

Cheesy sausage sushi with meatballs and slices of mandarin oranges.

March 28, 2010

Yan Yan – 8th month update

She's finally able to sit steadily unsupported.

But somehow, she doesn't quite like to be in this position. After a while, she'd resume the crawling position and transport herself everywhere, even though she may have something in her hands to keep her occupied. Another milestone is her ability to pull herself to standing position.

She amazes herself with the sound her hands make while clapping, though she doesn't quite understand it yet when we ask her to clap. On the other hand, she seems to know to open and close her fingers when we ask her to wave bye-bye. She's definitely weaned herself from thumb sucking as she's not been doing so for the last couple of weeks.

She hates being left alone, even for the shortest period. When hubby is not home and I have to tend to both girls myself, she can be playing happily on her own while I get Yiu Yiu ready for bed. But the moment we step into the bathroom to brush Yiu Yiu's teeth, she'd cry out and start crawling towards the bathroom. Another incidence that is sure to induce sreaming is when we remove things from her hands.

Several weeks back, she started wailing during our daily car journey home. As miraculously as it appeared, it had also miraculously stopped. Thank goodness for that - at least the daily drive home is not as stressful anymore.

We started her on porridge 2-3 weeks ago and she seems to love it more than cereal. I don’t blend her food anymore but simply mash the fish and mix them into the porridge. She can move her mouth as if chewing her food, though there's no signs of her teeth yet.

March 23, 2010

When she doesn't want to eat anymore…

…she can think of tonnes of excuses like:

My stomach is full already, I cannot put in anymore food.

My stomach has no more space already.

I burp already, meaning I'm full already.

And my absolute favourites...
My stomach grumbles already.

My stomach needs a rest.

March 20, 2010

Frozen bento stash

I haven’t been packing much bento for Yiu Yiu over the last few weeks coz my stash of frozen food for bentos had run out. Things have been really hectic at work too and so I hadn't the time to replenish the food stuff. Since school reopens on Monday after the week-long break, I took a day off yesterday to prepare these:

Clockwise from top left: Wanton, chicken nugget, drummet, meat balls

All this, plus some chicken stock for Yan Yan's porridge, took five back-breaking hours. I had wanted to prepare fish fingers too, but I was totally spent so that has to be a project for another day.

Beginning next week, Yiu Yiu's kindy will start at 8am instead of 8.30am, which means I have to get up by 6.15am to pack bento for her. She's better polish off her food, else all my hard work will be in vain.

March 16, 2010

Arts & crafts

Here are some of Yiu Yiu's arts & crafts projects, from kindy, arts class, and at home – some recent, while some were from as far back as last year. Mummy had forgotten to post them up :-)

Christmas tree and lion (using a recycled toilet tissue cardboard roll)

Chinese New Year card (front and inside) - words in pen were written by her teacher while she scribbled the rest with pencil

Fish, crab, birthday cake and some decorative card

Happy family - papa, mummy, Yiu Yiu and mei-mei. She doodled this while in the car

Can you guess what this picture is? According to her, it's a drawing of papa and mummy playing football, with the ball being kicked into the net. She drew this while at Yihao's house. Notice the difference of the people in this picture compared to the top one? She used a coin to trace out the head, and a ruler to draw out the body and limbs. I guess she must have observed Yihao doing the same.

March 12, 2010

Of realignment and first impressions

My company (lets call it A) acquired another company (lets call it Z) last year, but the operational integration didn't happen till recently. The new organization structure was announced just before Chinese New Year and since many personnel were affected by realignment and/or addition of product portfolio, trainings were scheduled for the week following the Chinese New Year break. I opted for a change of portfolio in a totally different therapeutic area, and was caught in a whirlwind of meeting/training/conference for eight straight days beginning from Feb 24. It totally drained the life out of me!

With this new portfolio, 80% of the managers comprises of employees from legacy company A, while 80% of the sales team are from legacy company Z. Majority of the team members were friendly and willing to share their experience, but a few were rather antagonistic - it was as if they felt the new managers encroached into their space. But then, I supposed this is a normal reaction of people involved in any merger. Things got better as the training progressed and towards the 2nd last day when we had a team-building session, the facilitator had all of us paste a blank piece of paper on our back, and we went around writing on each other's paper what our first impression of that person was.

I was very surprised to see what had been written on my paper:

I wouldn't be surprised if those remarks had come from people whom I've worked with. But with this entirely new team, whom I had first contact only during the training, and considering such a shaky start to the training, I was really pleased with such positive remarks. It lifted my spirits, and bolstered my confidence that we could potentially work well with this team.

As Henry Ford once said, "Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success". I hope we'll work together successfully.

March 08, 2010

My chatty girl

Having a chatty girl is a bane at times, coz it feels like having a mosquito buzzing beside your ears 24/7. But many a times, I'm entertained by her many innocent thoughts.

Giving mei-mei away
I sometimes purposely tease Yiu Yiu that I'd give her mei-mei away, especially when she whines and demands my attention when I'm attending to Yan Yan. She'd normally say no and quieten down, and wait till I'm done with Yan Yan before asking for my attending again. One morning while on the way to send her to the kindy, and Yan Yan to the babysitter:
Yiu Yiu: Mummy, if you want to give mei-mei away to somebody, you give her to Aunty Yoke Ling (the babysitter) and apek (babysitter's husband), OK.
Mummy: Why give mei-mei to Aunty Yoke Ling and apek?
Yiu Yiu: Is Aunty Yoke Ling and apek other people? (i.e., strangers)
Mummy: No, they are not other people.
Yiu Yiu: That's why la, then they will not do bad things to mei-mei. Other people will do bad things to mei-mei.
Mummy: But why do you want to give mei-mei away?
Yiu Yiu: Not me ah, YOU ah! YOU (with emphasis) want to give mei-mei away ah.

Of giving birth
Yiu Yiu: Mummy, when you give birth to mei-mei in the hospital, when the doctor push your tummy, is it painful?
Mummy: Emm…not so painful. Just a little bit.
Yiu Yiu: Eeee yea…like that I don't want to get married and have baby. Or I get married, but I don't want to go to the hospital to give birth. I will give birth at home.

Of falling in love and having girls
Yiu Yiu: Mummy, you fall in love with papa, or papa fall in love with you?
Mummy: We fell in love with each other la.
Yiu Yiu: You fall in love with papa because he is handsome, and papa fall in love with you because you are pretty, right? Then you two get married, then you have me first, then only mei-mei.
Mummy: Yeah.
Yiu Yiu: Why you like to have two girls?
Mummy: Because I like girls.
Yiu Yiu: I know, you like girls because you are a girl…(broke into giggles).

Of falling hair
I've been shedding lots of hair the past 2-3 months, which is typical for someone who is several months postpartum. When Yiu Yiu first saw so much of my hair in the shower drainer, she asked, "Why your hair drop so much, mummy?" to which I replied, "Because I ate too much salty food".

When I was having a shower with her recently, there were strands of hair all over the shower floor. Turning to me with a serious face, she said sternly, "You see, you drop so much hair already. You still want to eat salty food or not?" :-)

My chatty girl with her friends at music class

March 04, 2010

Yan Yan – 7th month update

Most babies develop from being able to sit unsupported, to creeping on the stomach, before progressing to crawling – but Yan Yan is an exception. She started creeping last month, and two weeks later, she could crawl, though still a little unsteady.

However, she can't quite sit unsupported just yet. Like when we had our reunion dinner in Kuantan, she had to be propped up and supported with lots of pillows while seated on the high chair.

When seated unsupported on the floor, she'll only be able to sit for less than a minute before sliding down to the floor :-)

I've noticed a decreased frequency of her putting stuff into her mouth; the same goes for thumb sucking. Though I miss seeing the contented look on her face while enjoying her thumb, I'm quite happy I won't have to force her to stop that habit. A new habit she's picked up is to keep letting go of things – I guess she's having fun getting papa/mummy to pick things up for her, only to let it go again the next second. Haha…ah well, at least she's learning cause and effect.

Emotionally, she's started to become wary of strangers – when we were back in Kuantan, she refused to be carried by her yeh-yeh and mah-mah. Luckily she was OK after a little warming up. Similarly, the babysitter also told me that she would cry when an unfamiliar face approaches or carries her. When she cries for attention/wants to be carried, her cries sound like, "Um ma, um ma". I wonder if it's just a fluke, or she's really crying out for me.

So far, she has had cauliflower, spinach, pumpkin, sweet potato, Chinese cabbage, carrot and apple added into her cereal and she's taking to them well. I think we'll probably switch her to porridge soon.