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Bible Verse of the Day

November 2009

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It’s been long overdue but it’s finally here.  Last week, I prepared porridge for Hannah, just like I did for Ethan previously. I used organic red rice, washed it and oven-dried it. (I guess I chose red rice because it is not so starchy)

 

Then I ground the rice in a dry mill till the consistency is that of a powder form.

I used just one or two teaspoons to cook the porridge and the remainder of the powdered red rice is stored in an airtight container for future use.

Hannah’s porridge has yummy stuff in it too.  For her first time, I chose familiar tastes like carrots and potatoes.

Steamed and pureed carrots, and steamed and fork-mashed potatoes, that is.  I usually prepare them in bulk and freeze the rest in ice cube trays, like so:

This way, it makes it easier on subsequent days when I cook her porridge.

I mix the powdered rice with some hot boiled water, throw in the food cubes and put this mixture in a small claypot.  I put this claypot in a water bath in the slow cooker and let it cook.

Sure seems like a lot of trouble cooking some porridge, but it’s truly worth it when the *customer* smiles eagerly when the dinner tray is placed in front of her, and happily eats the porridge cooked with love.

Sometimes she tries to grab the spoon and feed herself too!

Today marks the last day of the schooling year for Ethan.  I can’t believe that it’s been 3 months since he started school.  Feels just like yesterday that I was bringing a clingy toddler to class, and now, I’m glad to see that he is happy to go to school every day.

It certainly makes it easier when I see him ask to “wear his bag” and run eagerly to his class.  He’ll say bye to me, and when I pick him up, he’ll exclaim, “Mommy!” as he runs to hug me.

He’ll tell me all about his day in school, who he played with, what he did, and sometimes he would proudly bring back and show me the art and craftwork he has done.

It makes me proud too that he has made many new friends in school.  In fact, when I show him a picture of his classmates, he can remember ALL of their names!

His grasp of the alphabet and phonics has also increased tremendously, and even though he was only introduced to the Letterland characters in August (when teacher was teaching M), he can remember all of them now.  I was really amazed, and still am.

He has also surprised me when he started counting in Mandarin!  His school employs a dual-language approach, and although he sometimes looks a little bit confused when the teacher speaks in Mandarin, I’ve caught him singing in Mandarin too!  And sometimes, he tells me he learns “Chinese” 😛

 

Of course, he’s also had his share of fun in school.  From birthday celebrations, to bringing goodie bags back from school, to special events, Ethan certainly enjoys it. 

His class had a little  Halloween class celebration not too long ago, where the kids had a fun activity to paint a *ghost* made from dough.

Ethan is a very *work-proud* boy and when he brought his YELLOW ghost back home, he could not stop showing it around.

And of course, nothing beats that smile on his face when we praise him sky high for his beautifully painted yellow ghost! :)

So school ended with a blast, or rather a SPLASH, today as the kids all had a great time playing in the giant rubber pool in the school compound.

On the way back from school today, Ethan told me, “I had so much fun in school today Mommy!”

I’ve no doubt you did, sweetie… :)

Maybe it’s because we kiss Hannah all the time…how can we not when she flashes that adorable smile, with the almost-there dimple on her chubby cheeks?  Yeah, it has to be because we are incredibly affectionate with her, so much so that the affection we shower on her has made her affectionate too.

When I carry Hannah, she would hug me tight, sometimes using both hands to hold my head or my face, and attempt to kiss or chomp on my cheek or chin.  A similar trait that was exhibited by Ethan last time.

 

Last weekend when we visited Ethan and Hannah’s cousin Phoebe, Hannah was all affectionate again.  Crawling over to stroke Phoebe’s head, attempting to hug and kiss her…maybe Hannah thought Phoebe was a big soft toy for her to play with!

She’s also very loving and affectionate towards Ethan, but Ethan will run away from Hannah whenever Hannah comes a-crawling.  He’ll shout, “Hannah’s coming!”  and run very quickly away.

How can we ever resist affection from our little sweet Hannah? :)

 

Bingo!  The winning combination of rice cereal + EBM + pureed carrot + pureed potato makes Hannah ask for more! :)

Ethan loves numbers!  And the amazing thing about this is that we didn’t even force him to learn his numbers.  He picked it up all on his own, with his own interest.

Here’s a really cute video of him counting, finger actions included…(a result of nothing else better to do while waiting for the food to arrive).  Check out how he positions his fingers for numbers 3 and 8.  Priceless!

 

I am very pleased that both my kids are fully on drinking cups now, be it regular cups or sippy cups.  No more bottles to wash, no more bottle nipples to scrub…

When we left for the States, Ethan was still on the bottle, and I had planned on weaning him off it while we were there.  I was about 70% successful.  He was only taking the bottle once in the morning and once at night, and then slowly we eliminated the night one.  When we returned to Malaysia, he went totally off the bottle for good :)

As for Hannah, since I breastfed her for 5 months without having the bottle, it was expected that she would not want the bottle, so now when she is at the sitter’s, she drinks from a sippy cup.  A toddler sippy cup, mind you…the kind without the valve.  We don’t have to worry at all about weaning her from a bottle :)

 

I bought these Tupperware bell tumblers from US, which comes in 4 different colors.  Ethan drank from these when he was at the daycare in US.  But now in Malaysia, he rarely wants to drink from them anymore, preferring instead to use regular cups.  The pink one is Hannah’s.  She drinks her EBM and water from that one.

The NUK sippy cup is meant for Hannah, but so far it doesn’t seem like she likes the spout very much.

We’ve also got these 2 cups for the kids.  Got them from Gilroy Gardens.  At first we didn’t want to get them because we only found Ethan’s, but then when we saw Hannah’s, we knew we had to get them both.  Ethan sometimes drinks his water from his “Ethan cup”.  It will be some time still before Hannah will be able to drink from hers. :)

Ain’t it fun being a kid, when you have all these pretty colorful cups to drink from?

  Scrap Credits
While Softness QP from Missty Scrap
‘Sweet Baby’ Wordart vol. 2 from Dreams Inspired
Circle Dot Alpha (the number 8) from Laurie’s Scraps

Last weekend, we visited a friend and coincidentally there was also another baby at the house.  I was asked how old Hannah is, and when I said “8 months”, there were gasps all around.  Turns out the other baby is close to a year old, but Hannah looked a wee bit bigger than the baby.

Weight

Did not measure but should be close to 10 kilos now.

Height/Length

Getting taller and taller!

Teeth (yup, she has some growing!)

2 bottom incisors, and 2 more at the top are sprouting, I believe!

Motor Skills

  • Can crawl really well now.
  • Attempting to cruise.
  • Loves to hold on to things for support and stands up, e.g. the couch side, cot side, wooden toy, Ethan’s toy train…you get the idea…
  • Casting (throwing) of objects has started.
  • Getting harder and harder to bathe her because she will want to stand up or crawl out of the bathtub!

Communication and Social Skills

  • She sometimes responds/*talks back* to her brother when he *scolds* her or takes her toys away.
  • More pronounced verbalization of sounds.  I’m hoping she’ll call “Mommy” any day now :)
  • Can wave hi and bye.  I’ve also caught her waving to her reflection in the mirror.
  • Can give a high 5, well…more like a low 5.  I offer her my palm and she’ll high/low 5 it! :)
  • She is usually independent enough to play on her own, provided there is someone around in sight.  Will cry if she does not see anyone around.
  • Hannah has learnt the art of smiling into the camera when prompted. :)

Food and Feeding

She’s on Mommy’s milk 100% and is taking a little bit of solids too.  She has a solid meal once a day in the evenings, but it is more for tasting rather than making her full. She takes a combination of any of the following now:

  • Rice cereal + EBM
  • Pureed pear
  • Pureed apple
  • Pureed carrot
  • Pureed potato
  • A little bit of water.

Her favorite right now is Pureed carrot + rice cereal + EBM.  I normally add some rice cereal and EBM to the fruit/vegetable purees to make it creamier in texture.

I’m happy to note that the sibling relationship between Ethan and Hannah is significantly better now.  Granted, he still sometimes prevents her from playing with most of his toys, but he now (usually) will say “I’m the big brother, Hannah’s my little sister”, and I find that really sweet.

Ironically, I got them cute outfits that had the words “Big Brother” and “Little Sister” sewn on them, and thought it would be a good idea to have a picture taken of both of them in it.

 

Precious, precious, simply precious shots! :)

…although it was tough to take the pictures too, because Hannah kept wanting to touch Ethan’s hair and ears, while Ethan wanted to prevent her from doing so, while saying “Cheese!” at the same time! LOL

I asked Ethan to put his arm around Hannah in the last picture above :)

Don’t they both look happy? :)

A couple of days before Ipoh Ah Kong’s birthday, I took Ethan card-hunting.  We were looking for a birthday card for his granddad, but I had no idea it was so difficult to find one specifically for granddads.  We saw loads for Moms, Dads, Grandmas, Brothers, Sisters, even Aunts and Uncles.

Anyway, we found one just in the nick of time.  Ethan chose the card, and I helped him prepare the card to be sent. 

 

Ethan wanted to sign his own name on the card, and I gave him the pen to do it.  That was when I discovered my little boy could write E, T and H all on his own!  I guided him to write A and N, and then we sealed the envelope, he helped me glue the stamps on it, and happily put it in the post box.

Ah Kong was very pleasantly surprised to receive the birthday card, and Ethan was just as happy!  What an awesome way to send love! :)

Last week, Ethan only went to school for 3 days.  His school was closed for 2 days on Thursday and Friday, because all the staff was involved in a charity concert the school had organized.  This meant that I needed to find something for Ethan to do that won’t keep him bored.

So on Thursday morning, I took him to the children’s library.  It was just a very small one, but Ethan was VERY excited to step into a library…so much so that I had to remind him to NOT be too noisy (not that there were a lot of people there to disturb anyway).

 

Ethan chose several books and we sat at the table to read them.  Then I taught him how to put the books back in the rack or the bins so the librarians could arrange them back again.

My only complaint about the children’s library was that the books were very old, and during the time we were there, I didn’t really see any books that were that good.  But the important thing was that Ethan had fun!

I told him we could borrow the books, but he told me he wanted to BUY them! LOL

Anyway, in the afternoon, we had lunch at Fatty Loh’s at Nagore Road, and then drove to Queensbay Mall, where we went to the bookstore to get some magazines, and then went to the post office to post some letters.  There were some Halloween decorations up then, and Ethan went absolutely crazy!  He of course wanted a picture taken too, but he was moving so much it was hard to get a good shot.

Then we did a quick round of grocery shopping, and headed back for home.

Friday morning, we baked some chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting.  Ethan was asking for it the whole morning, and he was quite the helpful kitchen helper indeed.  He helped me pour the mixture, mixed it, and then he helped to lay out the cupcake wrappers in the molds.  Oh, and of course he helped in eating too!

We did have a great time, and I am quite sure I answered his question when he said, “School’s closed today, Mommy?” :)

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