Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers
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Bible Verse of the Day

June 2010

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When Hannah turned one, we had been looking for a photographer to take nice portraiture shots of her.  We had gone to a kids photo studio when Ethan turned one the last time, but that photo studio had already moved.   

We were still hunting for a photographer, when our friend Linda, who’s a freelance photographer, very kindly offered to take the photos for us.  We also wanted some family shots and of course, of Mr Bulat (aka Ethan) himself.

Now, if you don’t already know, family and kids’ portraiture shots are quite difficult to take and need a lot of patience and time, both from the photographer and from the *objects being photographed*.  This is because kids lose their focus easily and might not be at their best behaviour at all times.  And knowing my kids and how active they can get, we were prepared for a *highly energized* session, … which was what we got.

It was a Saturday morning in late May, and we planned on taking some shots indoors in our home, just to allow the kids to relax and be themselves, and then adjourning downstairs to the pool area.  However, it started RAINING just as Linda walked in, so we had to make do with indoor shots for most part of the morning, with the earlier shots taken of Ethan and Hannah in their jammies :)

Ethan warmed up immediately (which was so unlike him) whilst Hannah took a little while to *get into the mood*.  And with whatever *props* we found at home, we tried to make the session as lively and as entertaining as possible. We only went downstairs to the pool around noon, and because it had been raining the whole morning, it wasn’t that hot.

And I’d like to add that Linda was such a sport and took so many many many photos, of everything we did, and of everything that happened.  It was a delightful (but Pete said *tiring*) session and I loved every second of it.

Linda recently passed us the photos and they are awesome!  I love all the shots she managed to capture, and they all looked simply amazing!

Here is a preview of our Family Portraiture shots … I’m experimenting with Windows Live Movie Maker and decided to compile some of the shots into a short movie-presentation… :)

  

You can see the rest of the filtered shots here.  For the entire collection on DVD, please make a viewing appointment and come view it at our house, okay? :)  Thanks again Linda, for creating these wonderful memories! :)

For a few days now, Hannah has been singing out loud after dinner.  Yes, you heard me right.. :) While we wash up, we would be entertained by her singsong “Ba ba ba ba ba…..” melody. Well, it didn’t take long for us to figure out she was actually singing her favorite song, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star“.  She will smile happily when I start singing it and do the actions too! :)

 littlestar

And she also likes us to play the song for her on the xylophone and mini piano.  She would ask us to play the song on one instrument first, followed by the other, indicating which instrument she wants by pointing to it.  We willingly oblige, because she would say, “Yay!” and clap after we finish playing it…and sometimes she would dance too! Now who could say no to that? :) (p.s. Yes… that bruise on her forehead is the result of her “trip and fall” incident a couple of days ago)

Hannah is VERY intuitive.

Ethan recently started playing a game where he would hide and scream “Surprise!!” when Daddy walks in the door in the evenings.

After about two times of doing this routine, Hannah has picked up this *game* too.

When we hide ourselves, Hannah would put a finger to her mouth, indicating “Shhhhhh…..!!!”  (see how she picked it up from her big brother?)

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and when we yell “Surprise!!”, Hannah raises her arms in the air and screams out loud too!

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What follows after that is the welcoming committee greeting of hugging their Daddy as he comes in the door…. (Awwwwww….)

hannahontrain

This ride-on train is one of the most popular toys in our house.  Ethan still rides on it, even though he is way too tall for it now, and Hannah can now climb on it on her own and move around in it with her feet.  Yeah, that’s how much our little girl has grown!

When once Hannah needed Ethan to take her for rides in the train, now she can give her brother rides too!

sharedtrain

Soon, I doubt the seat would be able to fit the two of them simultaneously! :)

Of course, sometimes there are squabbles as to who gets to ride on the train, and sometimes Hannah is forbidden to ride on it, but in the end, my two little ones do work things out… :)

washhands

Hannah loves washing her hands.  And now, she even understands instructions to wash hands.  Whenever I say, “Okay guys, it’s time to wash our hands.  Let’s go!”, Hannah will walk to the bathroom door and extend her hands out towards the door…yes, just like in the picture above.

After washing her hands, she even knows how to go to her brother’s room to wipe her hands dry on his towel!  Sometimes, if she forgets to dry her hands, I’ll remind her and she’ll rush to Ethan’s room.

She just loves washing her hands so much that just the other day, when I asked Ethan to wash his hands, Hannah heard the words “Wash hands” and promptly rushed to the bathroom, thinking that I had also asked her to wash her hands.  But she tripped and fell, knocking her forehead on the door frame!  Ouch!

There was a “big bungalow” on her forehead because of that and she cried ever so loudly.  We put some ice on it and it has subsided somewhat.

Now when I ask the kids to wash hands, Hannah will run to the bathroom, but she will stop short of the door mat, i.e. the spot where she had tripped.

icecreamgood

Yesterday, while I was driving Ethan back from school, we passed McDonald’s and he asked me to stop for some ice cream.  However, I had already driven past it, so I told him he could have ice cream at home instead.

Mommy: Don’t worry, you can have the vanila ice cream at home.  We have some in the freezer.  You want some?
Ethan: Yay! YES!  I want some ice cream, Mommy!
Mommy: But wait..is your cough all better?
Ethan: Yes Mommy, my cough is ALL GONE.
Mommy: Good, then you can have some ice cream.
Ethan: Mommy, my cough is ALL GONE because I give ALL the germs to HANNAH!

Nope, we didn’t just spend our Ipoh trip stuffing ourselves silly with food.  That would be BAD.

The kids were occupied with other interesting things too!

Pete’s recent business trip coincided with the first week of the school holidays, so I decided to take both Ethan and Hannah down to Ipoh for a short holiday.  So what were my kids up to?  Hmmm…let’s see…

We had a belated birthday celebration for Ah Ma :)  I ordered a delicious butter cake and had candles so that Ethan could provide his candle-blowing services.

 holidays1

Kinta City mall was having a mini clay-sculpting workshop for kids where they would guide the kids to make a clay statue of their fathers in conjunction with Father’s Day.

First, you roll the clay between your hands and press it firmly onto a cardboard:

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Make sure you press it hard so that the clay mould sticks to the cardboard:

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Make indentations for the eyes, and shape the nose and mouth:

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Next, roll the clay and mould the base:

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Sculpt the hair on the head and create the entire face, neck and ears.  Then write a Happy Father’s Day message to Daddy:

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Attach a string to the card and tie it around the sculpture:

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Finally, pose cheekily with finished product :)

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Ethan was so excited about his sculpture, that he called his Daddy almost immediately and told him, “Daddy, I made a statue of you, Daddy!”

…On some days, I would allow Ethan to play some games on my laptop.  We found this cool baking game where he needs to *bake a cake* according to the picture provided.

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We also found time one morning to take both the kids to Polo Ground.  It’s a nice exercise area where lots of people come to do their runs or group exercises.  Now Polo Ground is also equipped with beautiful play structures for kids.  Ethan was thrilled!

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Hannah had her share of fun too!  Although she couldn’t quite explore the entire playground structure like her brother, she found other ways to have fun…

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I’m sure the kids had a good time in Ipoh, and especially spending that extra time with their maternal grandparents.  We drove back to Penang on Friday, tired but also just happy to be back home :)

hannah-15monthsScrap Credits
Precious Moments QP from Fly Pixel Studio
Giving Thanks alphas  from Stacey’s Scraps

Weight

10.3 kilos +

Height/Length

About 76-77 cm…or maybe more.

Teeth

8 incisors (4 top and 4 bottom), with a few more teeth appearing at the back, possible pramolars. 

Motor Skills

  • Hannah is walking around very quickly now, and sometimes picks up her step and starts running a little.
  • She can climb up the couch and the bed, sits there unaided and then climb down again, feet and butt first.  I still want to monitor her when she does that because I’m still wary that sometimes she does stand up on the couch/bed and appears to want to *walk off*.
  • Likes to *walk around* in the bathroom when taking her shower.
  • Loves to *hang on* to my legs, even when I am walking.

Communication and Social Skills

  • Hannah can imitate sounds that are being made, eg. “lalalala..”, “eh…” etc
  • Says “Bar-bee” to almost anything, but more often than not, in reference to soft toys and pictures of animals.
  • She can *tell* us what she wants to do or where she wants to go.  For example, when she wants to sleep, she will walk to the room and point at the closed door.
  • Smiles cheekily when someone holds a camera.
  • Screams aloud when excited, frustrated or angry.
  • Shows affection by kissing my cheeks.  Also, when Daddy comes home, she screams delightedly and runs to give him a hug. awwww…..
  • Can point to nose, hair and tummy when asked.  Not 100% consistent but we are working on it.
  • Loves to flip through books.
  • Sometimes refers to herself by saying “Nana”.

Food and Feeding

She’s on Mommy’s milk 100% and is still loving every bit of her porridge!  She takes a bit of our every day foods, and is very willing to try new things.  I try to give her foods which are low in salt and sugar though, but I love it that her diet is more varied now.  In fact, our girl will *ask* to be fed new things even though she’s not allowed to have it yet, e.g. when I’m eating ice cream, she will come very close to me and open her mouth. 

New foods she has been introduced to include:

  • Wanton noodles (from Old Town coffee shop)
  • Chopped celery (in chicken soup)
  • Beef balls (from spaghetti in Italiannies)
  • Beef stew (from Du Viet)
  • Pasta with tomato pasta sauce
  • Steamed Fish balls (dim sum) – she had a slight rash on her chest after this, so I’ll probably retry this sometime later.
  • Jiu hoo char with lettuce leaves (from Hainan)
  • Tau-ewe-bak (little bit)
  • Hainanese chicken rice
  • Cheerios

We will probably stop cooking porridge for her during weekends now that she can take almost the same food as we do. :)

worldcupmania

Everyone’s high on World Cup Mania nowadays…yes, even Ethan!  And when the newspapers published a pullout with pictures of the 32 teams, Ethan was VERY excited and wanted to learn how to say the names of all the countries.  He kept the pullout and has been learning the names of the countries ever since.  His favorites are Brazil and South Africa (because the team’s jerseys are yellow).

And now, he can proudly name them all! (I love the way he pronounces “Ivory Coast” :))

 

And you know what?  It’s not only from memory that he can name the countries!  Ethan can really read…here he is, reading from our World Cup Guide magazine.

 

So is this an indication of interest in:

A: Sports
B: World Geography
C: Reading
D: All of the above :)

 

hannah1

When Hannah was being treated in the hospital for her pneumonia a month and a half ago, the pediatrician took a sample of her blood for testing too.  The results showed that her red blood cells were a little bit on the pinkish (i.e. not red as they should be) and also slightly smaller than usual.  Further tests showed a decreased level of Serum Ferritin (iron) in the blood (only 10ug/dl when the acceptable range is 37-145ug/dl for females).

Hannah’s test results indicated either a Thalassemic condition or iron-deficiency anemia.

Her doctor asked if either Pete or I had any history of Thalassemia, but since we are both blood donors, it is highly unlikely that we are Thalassemic or even carriers.  So it became apparent that Hannah was most probably deficient in iron.  This could happen because she is exclusively breastfed, and might not have sufficient iron in her solid food intake.  Exclusively breastfed babies receive sufficient iron from their mother’s breastmilk from birth till about 6 months of age, after which the iron levels in the milk could drop a little; and if other food sources do not provide adequate amounts of iron in the diet, the child might be deficient in iron. (Source: Ask Dr Sears)

Because iron-deficiency in toddlers/infants from birth till 3 years needs to be addressed immediately, Hannah’s pediatrician prescribed an oral iron therapy solution to be taken for 3 months.  Hannah was to take 2.5ml of Maltofer twice a day for 3 months, after which her iron levels will be retested.  In addition, doc also prescribed a Multivitamin syrup to improve her appetite.

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It has been 1.5 months now, and I have to say it’s really working.  Hannah, whom we thought was already very active pre-iron-therapy treatment, is now MORE active and MORE vocal than ever.  Her appetite has increased by leaps and bounds and she loves trying different types of food.  We’ve also been giving her lots of iron-rich foods like chicken liver, beef, pasta, tomatoes, bread, etc just to boost the iron levels. 

I thank God that feeding her the iron therapy and multivitamin is not stressful, because she is very cooperative and I simply use the syringes to administer both the iron and multivitamin.  Plus, because she is on an iron supplement, it is important for her to drink lots of water to prevent constipation, and Hannah has also been a very good girl in gulping down water. :)

I can’t wait for the iron therapy to end and the test results to show a favorable level of iron in Hannah’s blood come the end of three months.  Meanwhile we’ll have to deal with *slightly more pungent* poopoo for a few more weeks! 😛

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