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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Are you saving up for the rainy days?

You know how they say, no matter how much you plan for your life, if things are meant to happen, they will happen anyhow? I'm sure there's a proper quote for this, just don't know which one so I'll just put it out here in layman terms la hahaha.

What happened in the past few weeks have taught me a thing or two about life *cues dramatic music*, and made me think about saving up for the rainy days.

About 3 weeks ago, I was driving on the NPE highway when a tiny pebble fell from a truck beside my car, and hit my windshield. It happens so frequently especially on highways that I didn't give it much thought, not even a glance at my windshield. I just kept on driving and carried on with life. Until the following morning when Boon was driving and he suddenly went, "Dear, what's this crack on our windshield?"

I looked over from the backseat and got a shock! When did that happen? I had no idea. Then slowly it dawned upon me that it could be that seemingly harmless pebble that hit my windshield! What was shocking was that instead of the usual small round crack on the windshield, this crack was a longgggg oneeeeee.

To make matters worse, the crack just kept growing longer and longer by the day. Each time I drove I had the worst possible scenario flashing in my mind. 

What if another pebble hits my windshield and the whole thing cracks on the highway and I can't see anything but can't stop the car! 

What if a bird decided to fly into the windshield and smash the whole glass into my face! 

Worst one- What if the shattered glass cut Tyler and injure him???

Boon wasn't around on weekdays for the past few weeks due to work, and on weekends we're usually packed to the brim, so we had no time to get it settled. But all these worst case scenarios made me super paranoid, so my dad very kindly brought our car for repair T_T

To add to the damage, apparently our car insurance doesn't cover windshield damages so we had to pay a total of RM1,600 plus tinting too. That's RM1,600 flying out the window, for nothing :(

I asked myself, what could I have done to avoid the crack? Aside from not driving on the highway (which is nonsense cos essentially this can happen ANYWHERE, even outside our house), there was really nothing I could have done to prevent it from happening. It really was one of those unforeseen,  unfortunate incidents.

After we settled everything, got a new windshield replaced and heaved a sigh of relief, I got a text from one of my sisters that this happened.

She was having tea at Tous Les Jour in Empire Gallery Subang and came outta the mall to this. It was all good before we went in, so it must have happened at the carpark itself.

To add to the mystery, a note was left on the car by a random stranger who apparently witnessed the "hit and run", and wanted to seek justice for my sister by reporting her car plate number in hopes that she could demand for compensation from the irresponsible driver.

Apparently they tried paging for my sister through the mall announcements but she couldn't hear it cos she was in Tous Les Jour which was placed outside the mall -.- A few kind souls who witnessed the incident reported to the mall management, and one of them left this note for my sister!

This is definitely some useful info, but then again nothing is certain. Even if we managed to identify the irresponsible driver from the car plate number, she could also say someone tried to sabotage her and it wasn't her at all. So my dad decided to let it go and just handle the repair ourselves. Money...flying out the window again...

These two incidents within these few weeks made me realise just how random life can be. We can be all careful and such, yet accidents can still happen regardless of how we tried to prevent it. Of course, we can buy insurance, etc. but that's for another blog post altogether.

The point of my post is, sometimes we take life for granted thinking "it won't happen to me", so whatever we earn, we spend, and maybe we save...for vacations. I understand especially for the young working adults, it's difficult to save out of the pay they're getting cos cost of living is so high in the city. But the truth is, it is important and essential to save for unforeseen circumstances like the above.

It also made me think, what about the ones who are living from hand-to-mouth everyday? There are so many poor motorcyclists who get into accidents and because of the lack of funds, they just gotta settle with having no transportation until they get enough money to send their vehicles for repair. There are so many urban poor around us, and these incidents made me think of them :(

For us, the repair amounts did sting but we could still carry on with our daily lives with food on the table and a roof over our heads. But how about those whose livelihood depended on it? 

So yeah, just thought I should share about this cos in this day and age where it's all about living the YOLO life and wanderlust, people are not interested to hear about saving money for the boring things like rainy days. Articles like "how to save for your next travel" will go viral compared to "how to save for rainy days in life" hahaha.

Perhaps some necessary food for thought right here!
That's all from me for now :)

love, Careen.
This post is filed under PersonalThoughts

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tyler's First Fever

Hey guys!

Apologies on the absence! It's been a pretty busy few weeks for our little family, and I would say I had just experienced one of the most challenging weeks in these 10 months of motherhood (Aside from the first few weeks of confinement month, definitely. Nothing beats the confinement month).

Three weekends ago, we travelled to Cameron Highlands with the cell group, and two weekends ago, we went for a road trip to Ipoh + Penang with Boon's family. Boon came back the day before we traveled, and went back the very same day we came back from Penang while Tyler and I also move to my parents' (again). It's been pretty crazy. Anyways, whenever we mention Ipoh and Penang two, you can expect that there will be FOOD HUNT! Ipoh and Penang are amazing states in Malaysia that serve up great hawker food, so we went on food hunts stop-after-stop, back-to-back.

As much as the food was amazing, one thing though was that Tyler was exceptionally uncooperative in this trip. He refused to be in baby chairs during meal time, was difficult to feed the food we prepared for him, very whiny and cranky, and basically just wanted to cling on to me like a koala. Sometimes even when my in-laws or Boon carried him to walk around, he would still whine and choose me to carry him instead. So throughout the trip, I was carrying Tyler almost all the time. This 8kg+ koala clinging on to me. Best way to lose weight!

It was on the second day we were there that Tyler became EXTRA fussy. He threw multiple tantrums, spit out food we fed him, and basically was being very difficult. At one point, I had enough and scolded him with my voice raised which led him to cry even louder and angrier. After that though, he tried to act all cutesy in front of me, lean his head on my shoulder and tried to be on a better behaviour. That's the thing with Tyler, whenever I reached my limits and scold him, he would sense that I was angry and would try to make me happy again.

Later that afternoon, we discovered that he had a temperature. Initially I felt that his forehead was a little warm, but thought it was due to the hot weather so I brushed the thought aside. However, after a few hours in got much worse, and that's when we suspected Tyler to be having fever. His first fever.

Call us carefree parents (a very nice way to put it) or careless parents (that's more like it), we did not bring anything that could help with his fever. When Tyler was younger we brought everything, but since we thought he is now bigger and stronger, we would likely not need those stuff anymore so we "packed light". Oh, just how wrong we were. We didn't bring along the thermometer so we didn't know his real temperature, we didn't bring any fever patches or medicine too. Thankfully my mom in-law packed Cool Fever patches and fever meds along (grandmas know best), so Tyler had his first Cool Fever moments at least for 5 minutes before tearing them off his forehead.

We fed him infant paracetamol 1 teaspoon in every 4-5 hours, and each time he would struggle and cry angrily, to the point we had to bribe him with Barney on the iPad while holding him down so he would at least consume some of the meds. It was absolutely heartbreaking to watch.

My secret "aim" in this parenting thing is to at least last 1 year before Tyler fell sick. Well, I guess some things are just not within our control. I read up about this fever and also heard from some Dayre moms that Tyler's fever could very well be due to teething. Which was very likely because he was still pretty active and playful like his normal self (just extra cranky and moody!) and he didn't have signs of sore throat, cough or flu at all. So it was unlikely to be caused by viral infection.

So we just waited for a few more days before deciding to bring him to the doctor's.

Still smiling despite the temp. My little trooper (when he's not cranky).

The fever lasted from Saturday-Tuesday, on and off. I really wanted to bring Tyler to the paed's already but some thing told me that he would be fine the next day, so I said a prayer for him and went to bed.

True enough, when I woke up the next morning and touched his forehead and neck, his fever was completely gone! Praise the Lord! God is indeed a prayer-answering God.

Though he's healed, his moodiness and crankiness was still around. Being older now, he understands things better and wants to exert his rights. Just a few months ago, he would be perfectly fine sitting in the baby chair during meal time in restaurants. He would sit there playing with whatever we gave him, and look around entertaining himself. For the past week, whenever we put him into the baby chair he would whine and fuss until we carried him out. It was a nightmare bringing him out for meals with us :(

The day after his fever subsided, he developed what looked like rashes all over his forehead and body. The rashes really irritated him and he wouldn't stop fussing cos of it. He still wouldn't eat, and only wanted to latch and for mommy to carry. All my work had to be done at a slower pace cos I was constantly needed to be with Tyler. Only time I could get back to my laptop was during his one-and-a-half-hour naps. Thank God he takes multiple naps a day.

The challenging part about the fever + rashes episode wasn't so much on the physical part. Sure, it was exhausting to say the least. But it was the emotional part that was way more challenging for me. Now I understand why when babies are unwell, my mommy friends literally go missing in action for a while. That's cos when a child is sick, it is a trying time for both the child AND the parents. It's emotionally draining.

I questioned myself as a mother in the past week more than ever before.

"Since he's unwell, should I be the doting and understanding mom, and just let him continue to whine  and fuss while I endured everything?"

"If I just let him have his way, kicking a fuss and throwing tantrums, would he get used to this and form a habit out of it?"

"Should I discipline him for the tantrums?"

"Or should I just continue to tahan and try to be understanding?"

Most of the time, after enduring for a while I couldn't help but raise my voice at him to "show" him that he shouldn't throw his tantrums. And then I'll feel bad afterwards. And the cycle repeats.

During those times, my mom would assure me that it's normal for babies to be at their worst behaviour when they're unwell. Give them some time and they'll slowly return to their normal selves. At that moment it felt like this nightmare was here to stay. That we would be stuck with this cranky baby for a long time. I sure was hoping to see that day sooner, and wishing that it wouldn't be a slow transition.

True enough, yesterday (after 4 days of fever + 2 days of post-fever rashes) he woke up happy and back to his cheerful self! He began smiling and laughing more, stopped fussing and whining, and started eating again!! I was excited about helping him to pack on the pounds again after not eating much for a week, which made him lose some weight (as if he's not already small sized for his age).

He's been so cranky that I actually forgot how it feels when he was all healthy and well. So it's truly refreshing to finally have my happy Tyler back. I'm relieved :')

Everyone at home noticed the big change in his mood too. Last week he wouldn't even get excited when he saw my little sisters. Now that his good mood is back, everyone's super relieved and kept saying OMG I'm so glad Tyler is back lolol. Everyone had missed the happy baby we all know :')

Got my first glimpse at how it's like when a baby falls sick, which gave me new found respect towards parents whose kids are unwell, especially when they have more than 1-2 kids! It really isn't easy at all. So guys, if you have any parents friends whose kid is sick, please try to be as understanding as you can if they can't turn up for meals or events. It really isn't easy and requires us to be out of action for a bit.

Here's to hoping Tyler won't be falling sick anytime soon now!

Thanks for reading my not very coherent blog post. Hahahaha I know everything is everywhere. It's 2.24am as I'm typing so blame it on the time! :P

Be back soon!

love, Careen.
This post is filed under PersonalMotherhoodTyler Jay Ng

Monday, September 26, 2016

'Sleep with the Sharks' Giveaway!

Hello guys! Continuing my post in sharing about the new Scott's® DHA Gummies and the 'Bright Little Explorers' campaign that they've recently launched! I blogged Part I of the event HERE!

"Sleep with the Sharks"

One of the exciting activities of the 'Bright Little Explorers' campaign include 'Sleep with the Sharks' where kids are allowed to witness various nocturnal activities by sharks and other marine creatures in a fun-filled night at Aquaria KLCC itself! So cool! It's like having sleepover with friends, but at an aquarium! Can adults join too? :')

It's not just a regular sleepover, by the way! Kids get to feed the sharks and do other hands-on activities including night educational tours apart from sleeping with the sharks!

If only I got to experience this when I was younger! Our kids are so blessed don't ya think? Unfortunately Tyler is still a little too young to appreciate it but if you have kids who are old enough to enjoy and participate, don't miss this opportunity to give them this once in a lifetime opportunity!

Tyler's first encounter with a turtle. And he was I watching TV? Hahahah guess he was too young to know if this was TV or reality :')

"Blippar App"

And here's something for the kids AND parents too! 

Scott's® has launched content in collaboration with an augmented reality app called 'Blippar', an app that helps parents to gain easy insight on DHA, engage in fun activities like puzzle games, virtual photo booths and so on! The activities are designed to stimulate the brain and trigger children's inquisitiveness.

The Blippar App can be downloaded via Google Play Store (for Android users) and the Apple Appstore (for iOS users)!

If you're wondering how the Scott's® DHA Gummies look like, here they are!

The idea behind the creation of Scott's® DHA Gummies is to provide moms challenged with busy schedules a helping hand when it comes to contributing to the DHA intake of their child. We parents have got so many to think about everyday, and sometimes it may just slip our minds that we're missing out certain nutrients that our kids need in their food intake.

With just 3 dummies a day, kids can get 40mg of DHA they need to supplement their daily diet! So as long as your little ones are taking 3 gummies a day, you can be rest assured that their DHA intake for the day is covered!

Many a times the tricky thing about feeding kids with supplements is that they tend to taste funky and not the yummiest thing in the world, but with Scott's® DHA Gummies, you're likely be facing the very total opposite scenario. Instead of needing to chase them around to feed them, they might just request for more than 3 gummies a day because they're so yummy!

The gummies come in Orange and Strawberry flavours, in shapes of octopus, crab and fish! How cute, seriously :')

They're available in 3 different pack sizes-
3 pcs (RM0.99), 15 pcs (RM9.90) and 60 pcs (RM34.40).

And here's a contest for you to win your little explorers to experience sleeping with sharks, and for you to win RM100 worth of AEON shopping vouchers! Here are the simple instructions on how you can participate in this giveaway on Scott's® Facebook page!

Step #1:
Ask your mini to complete this sentence:
"If I could sleep next to a shark, I will ask Mr. Shark....." (in less than 25 words), then guide your mini to draw a very simple happy shark on a piece of paper.

Step #2:
Snap a photo of your mini's drawing and post it in the comments below along with your mini's sentence.

Contest period: 
19th September 2016 - 7th October 2016

1 pair of 'Sleep with the Sharks' tickets
RM100 AEON shopping vouchers

10x most creative drawing and captions will win! It's such an exciting contest cos not just the kids get to win something, us parents get to walk away with prizes too! And man, I love shopping vouchers the most! :P

So hurry and get your contest entries ready for submission! Oh, and check out the terms and conditions via this page too!

All the best to all of you mommies and minis! :)

That's all from me for now!
All the best for the giveaway!

love, Careen.
This post is filed under AdvertorialLifestyleFamily.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Tyler's Newborn Photoshoot Pictures

There you have it, Tyler's first professional photoshoot! :)

We shot these photos when Tyler was two weeks and three weeks old respectively. Oh my, he was so tiny, skinny and still covered in his newborn hair all over his face and body (which I really miss! now his skin is hairless and smooth like a hippo ahahah). 

We intended to have only one shoot but as what they always say, we can never plan too much when it comes to babies, especially when photographing newborns! They have yet to develop a routine and anytime could be sleepy time or active time, as and when they like! Read any advice from professional newborn photographers and they'll tell you to free the entire day for the shoot as babies need to feed and nap in between, and it requires lots of waiting and patience in doing so. We had our first shoot in the day time after Tyler's bath, which was supposedly the happiest time of his day. It was so and we had some great shots of him all happy and smiling, but it wasn't for long as before we knew it, it was time for another feed, and another nap.

Fed Tyler a couple of times in between shoot, carried him up to soothe him when he fussed and slowly put him back on our bed when his mood got better. It was also one of our first attempts putting him on tummy time, where he surprised us by lifting his head so high and pushing himself up on the pillow in one of the photos above! 

Most epic thing would be that he peed on our bed when we stripped him naked for his costume shots. He wet the bed several times until he got fed up lying in his own pee and cried angrily! That was when we gave up and decided to wrap the shoot earlier and continue the following week as suggested by our photographer, Nicole who is super nice and understanding.

Looking back at these precious photos brings back all the emotions that I was feeling at that time. At only two weeks postpartum, I was still overwhelmed by all the feelings of joy, pain and exhaustion. I was still bearing what looked like a 6 months pregnant belly, bloated with water retention, pain and discomfort from my c-section incision, and boobs engorged with breastmilk lol. With how I was feeling at that point, I was tempted to perhaps not go ahead with the newborn photoshoot as it required so much preparation. I needed to get out of my confinement look (aunty clothes, oily hair and pale face), get my hair washed and blown nicely, do my makeup and look for decent clothes to wear (THAT COULD STILL FIT ME OMG). It wasn't easy.

Besides, before I gave birth I had ALL the ideas on how I want our newborn shoot to be. I saved lots of photos from Pinterest, and thought about all the concepts and cute stuff we could do with Tyler. But when it came to the real thing, I was just too immobile and caught up with being a new mom (who couldn't even walk fast due to the incision) which rendered me helpless in preparing much for the shoot.

Thank goodness Love, Bubsie sent us some adorable knitted costumes when I was still pregnant, which came in real handy during the photoshoot! Loved all the adorable costumes, especially the little snail and dino!

Boon was, of course, being the supportive husband that he always is. The photoshoot (obviously) wasn't his idea as he's not fond of being in front of the camera, what more else posing for a shoot! But he knew it would mean a lot to me, so he obliged and cooperated (after fooling around for a bit) haha.

While Tyler was being the trooper that he still is. Since he was a newborn, he had always been very cooperative with us, even until today. He let us pose and move him here and there though he clearly was tired and uncomfortable after a while, and only cried when he no longer could take it (the pee on the wet bed hahaha). This is one of his most lovable traits that Boon and I deeply treasure. Even on nights when he was super tired when we're out, he would just hang on until he couldn't take it. In what we like to call, he would "give face" to us parents before making any fuss. Tyler, thanks for being an amazing baby to your papa and I, even from the very start.

At the end of the day we were all tired, but it was all worth the while because these photos were moments frozen, which enable us to look back and remember all the tiny details and feelings we felt at that time.

Here's also something from when Tyler was just a newborn, back when he was only one month old! 

Made a decision to commit to vlogging more these days because videos are just so precious. Tyler is just getting cuter by the day so we gotta catch 'em all (the moments) before they're gone.

Do subscribe to my YouTube channel to get the first updates whenever I upload a new video! :)

'Til then!

love, Careen.
This post is filed under PersonalMotherhood, FamilyTyler Jay Ng
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