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Friday, March 6, 2020

Journey to Better Skin and Health with Golden Bird Nest

If you've been following on Instagram posts and stories for a while now, you would know how much I LOVE my bird's nest drinks, and how they have been a part of my beauty and wellness regime!

I officially started consuming bird's nest about 5 years ago when I was pregnant with Tyler. I remember asking around for advice on what to consume to ensure that my baby gets smooth and healthy skin cos I was honestly quite concerned as Boon has a history of sensitive skin and eczema :(

One of the most popular advice I got was to take bird's nest! And so I did. My MIL got 500g of bird nest from her hometown for me and my mom would boil a small pot every alternate days for me, and that became the thing that I looked forward to most throughout my pregnancy, as I also noticed a different in my own skin! A lot of people commented on how come my skin was so good during pregnancy when sometimes hormones would make preggers have break outs and affect their skin condition negatively, so I would say my bird's nest consumption had something to do with that!


But...the thing about buying and boiling my own bird's nest is that it can be quite troublesome. On days when I was travelling (follow Boon outstation for work a lot while I was pregnant with Tyler!), I wouldn't be able to take my bird's nest cos I couldn't slow boil in the hotel room lol. So that made my bird's nest consumption rather inconsistent. In the end I still had a few pieces of bird's nest that I couldn't finish even after Tyler was born!

This time with Lucas' pregnancy, I made sure I took bottled bird's nest instead, so that I could consistently consume at any convenient to me!


These Golden Bird's Nest bottles and boxes are so pretty, don't you think?

I started consuming bird's nest even in the first trimester of my pregnancy cos that's when babies start forming their skin tissues! Been taking a bottle a day about 3-4 times a week throughout my pregnancy, and that has also helped my skin to be glowy and smooth too! Seriously this pregnancy glow is real. After I gave birth I lose the glow almost immediately due to lack of sleep and lots of stress lol. But anyway, #throwback to glowier days hahaha.


Andddd for some reason this time I didn't develop any stretchmarks during pregnancy! With Tyler I did towards the last few months, so for Lucas I was waiting for the same thing to happen.

In the end really didn't have! I think cos I was diligently applying Clarins anti-stretchmarks toning oil and cream every night (okay more like Boon apply hahaha), and I believe the bird's nest consumption helps too as it's known to be rich in Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF), which is a substance responsible for skin and tissue repair!

If you're wondering whether bird's nest is all about beauty alone, the answer is no! It is also known to promote health by relieving respiratory ailments such as asthma and chronic coughs, clear phlegm, stimulate appetite, improve digestion and bowel movement and so on!

Which is why I still continue to consume bird's nest until today, months after pregnancy cos what I take, Lucas indirectly consumes too as I'm still breastfeeding him!



These are my new sets of Golden Bird's Nest!

The new pink packaging is their new range called French Rose Nest, which not only looks beautiful and tastes great (ahhhhh I'm a sucker for all things roses!), but French Rose is also traditionally used for medicinal purposes to boost immunity, remove toxins, fight inflammation, eliminate period cramps, reduce stress and regulate sleeping patterns- which sounds like what we, stress-laden women need.



Golden Bird's Nest also pride themselves in their retort system of bottling, which uses seal caps that help extend expiry date up to 2 years after manufacturing date.

GBN also practises stringent cleaning procedure where all bird's nest used are not bleached, with no chemicals used including the likes of bleaching agent, colouring, hydrogen peroxide and so on.

Each jar of GBN is 70ml and abundantly filled with soothing strands of delicate 1.5g bird's nest, mixed with RO water, double boiled and enhanced with organic sugar cane extract. So you can be rest assured that they are safe to be consumed by pregnant women and even children!


Posing with my empty bird's nest bottle after indulging in them!

Most of all, I take bird nest as part of my self-care regime too. Did you know that bird's nest is best consumed on empty stomach? Either the last thing you consume before you sleep, or first thing in the morning before having breakfast!


This was me and my GBN during my Netflix chill time after the kids are asleep!


Me and my GBN first thing in the morning while dropping the boys off before heading for work!


And here's my office situation! Bringing my GBN into office first thing in the morning so I can enjoy it in a calm and zen environment hehe.

Guess what, Golden Bird's Nest is female owned and operated, whom I have been having the pleasure of knowing and collaborating with! And they are offering a special discount just for my dear readers and followers!

Enter code:

GBNxCAREEN

for 20% OFF your order!


You can shop online at www.goldenbirdnestglobal.com and follow them on FB/Instagram at @goldenbirdnest!

Happy shopping, and I hope you enjoy the bird's nest as much as I always do!

And before I go, here's wishing you (if you're a female reading this!) a

Happy International Women's Month!

A women alone has Power;
but together, we have IMPACT.




Love, Careen.
This post in filed under LifestyleFashion and BeautyAdvertorials.


Monday, March 2, 2020

Clean and Safe Toys and Accessories with Sleek Baby


Who's this big boy over here?? ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

Just like that, Lucas has turned 7 months old. And with every 7 months old, they're starting to really explore their taste buds (started taking solids for one whole month already!), and that means EVERYTHING goes into the mouth.

Everything- including toys, and everything he could possibly lay his hands on!


His current favourite "toy"? This powder orange powder spoon on the floor *smacks head

Lucas started semi-crawling since before turning 6 months, and went full force at 6.5 months! So it's been one full month of exploring the house and everywhere he goes on all fours. That means we gotta really watch him because he is mobile now (so fast!), AND really watch what goes into his mouth especially with all the virus going around ๐Ÿ˜”

I'm pretty particular when it comes to what we use to clean our boys' milk and water bottles, toys and accesories like pacifier, etc. We sterilise them daily, but what we use to wash and clean them before putting into the steriliser matters too!


Been recently introduced to Sleek Baby- a bottle, nipple and accesories cleanser which is antibacterial, made from natural ingredients and is 100% FOOD GRADE so it is totally safe for babies!

It also contains stain removal formula which effectively removes milk residues from milk bottles, and oil from water bottle nipples, which is really important cos milk residue that is not removed or cleaned can develop into bacteria that can be harmful for your baby's guts!

Having said that, it is also safe and is paraben free and anti-irritation tested, which is what every parent wants to hear! Last thing we want is for our little ones to ingest chemicals daily.


1. Toy Cleanser

I use Sleek Baby for a few different purposes and one of them is to clean their toys! Oh man, these toys go everywhere. One moment they're in the kids room drawers, another moment it's all over the floor and THEN in their mouths ๐Ÿ˜‘

And when we bring toys out, they're in the plastic, then in their hands and mouths, on the table and baby chairs, and most of the time ending up on the floor ๐Ÿ˜‘๐Ÿ˜‘

So toys, as innocent as they look, are actually full of germs and are very dirty (which is invisible to the eyes so we always ignore). Which is why it's important to wash and clean them frequently!



What I do is that I would usually soak all the toys in a tub with water, squeeze a little bit of Sleek Baby cleanser into the tub, and use a bottle brush (we love this one from IKEA!) to clean the toys!


2. Bottles, Nipples and Accessories


Some may think it's okay to just use regular dish washing liquid to clean baby's bottle, teats and accessories like bibs and bowls, cups, but I personally feel it's better to wash with food grade cleansers that have been proven to be safe for babies and kids.

Same thing, I'll soak the items with water inside a tub, squeeze in some Sleek Baby cleanser and use a bottle brush to clean thoroughly. For times when we are washing just one single bottle or bib, we will just squeeze a very small amount onto the item and wash with the brush too!


3. Fruits and Vegetables!


Yes, Sleek Baby isn't just for babies and kids, but adults can use it as a fruits and vegetable cleanser too, given that it is safe and food grade, and is effective in getting rid of pesticides!


Works the same way as above, except that this time with fruits and vegetables, I don't clean them with a bottle brush lol, but just use my hands to rub off the sometimes sticky chemicals that get stuck to fruits especially!


Our daily kitchen sink situation!

You can find out more about Sleek Baby on their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/SleekBabyMY!

That's all from me today.
Be back soon with more updates!




Love, Careen.
This post is filed under AdvertorialFamily

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Week 38: A Letter to My Second Son + Maternity Photoshoot Favourites


Can't believe after 4 years, here I am writing this similar blog post that I did while I was pregnant with Tyler at Week 38.

You can read the previous blog entry here:

So it's been a few weeks of endless baby laundries, online shopping, collecting hand-me-downs and getting rid of LOTS of things from our home that we don't use or need anymore- all to make way for our newest addition to the family, our dear Baby Dumpling.

Even at this moment, I'm feeling tired from all the final prep, but I can finally say I feel ready. We've gotten majority of our prep done and by now, our bedroom and baby crib is all set-up, baby's nursery corner and closets are ready, breast pump parts are being sterilised as I'm typing, all our confinement herbs have been prepared and stored nicely, and hospital bag 70% packed. Today is all about final prep so that we can just chill and relax tomorrow without worrying about getting anything important done!

Reason why we're in such a rush is because our gynae has schduled a planned c-section for us on Monday. Yes, two days away! Can't believe it's this soon already. This pregnancy does feel like time flies by a lot faster.

If you're wondering why the planned c-section, my gyane explained that due to my previous c-section and Gestational Diabetes history (and also current GD), it's better not to risk having Uterine Rupture due to prolonged contractions from natural birth. So he advised to just go for a planned c-section to minimize risks.

I was initially hoping to be able to try natural birth and that Baby Dumpling would make his grand entry into the world before my c-sec date, but until now (two days away) there still isn't signs of labour (though I've been getting irregular cramps and contractions every now and then), so looks like it's Monday still!

Okay background story done.

I've been sharing some of my favourites from our Maternity Photoshoot with Gladys on my Instagram over the last couple of months, and here's the full collection of my favourites (actually every single photo is my favourite!) for memories sake.

As per tradition, here's a letter to my son accompanying the blog post.





Dear son, whom we still call Baby Dumpling,

Mommy is still finding it hard to believe that we will be meeting you in a matter of just two days! Your daddy and I have been so busy running about getting everything done before your arrival, so that when you join us, it will be a comfortable and clean home for you to live in.

Mommy is in charge of getting everything together, planning our to-do lists, shopping and collecting for whatever we need, and organising everything into place (and your daddy is in charge of all the fixing, moving and heavy-lifting!) so that it will be an easy and convenient setting for us to reach for things when you're kicking and screaming for diaper change or a burp after feeds! Yes, we know what to expect this time from our experience with your kor kor.



Speaking of your kor kor, his name is Tyler and he has been looking forward to meeting you! Every night he will sayang mama's belly and say that Baby Didi is inside. Whenever we asked him if he loves Baby Didi and whether he will learn to share his toys with you, he will nod his head with a smile on his face :)

Your kor kor Tyler adores babies, and we have witnessed it with how he loves your cousin Judah, and how gentle (and sometimes *geram*) he is with him.

Ever since I became pregnant with you, we noticed that your kor kor became super sticky, sensitive and attached to us (especially me!). But over the last couple of months, we have seen him grow to be more understanding and mature, which seems like he knows he will rise up to be a big brother soon. And I know he will be a great one to you. You two will be best friends who fight and forget about it the next second, and you will sail through life together as partners in crime.

Your papa and I cannot wait to witness how you two will bond as brothers.







Now, on to your amazing daddy.

There wasn't any doubt at all from the very beginning that he will make a great papa. Yes, even before we had your kor kor.

And seeing just how natural, hands-on and intuitive he is with your kor kor these past 3 years and 7 months, I know for sure he will be great with you, especially now that he is experienced!

You're going to love him. He's funny and humorous in his own special and sometimes annoying (and disgusting ways). He is liked and loved by many for his jovial and happy-go-lucky personality, his kind and generous character, and his stupid antics.

He will most likely tickle you and bully you quite a bit as how he does with your brother, but you will end up loving every single bit of it. I guess that's how fathers and sons bond? ๐Ÿ˜…



Very soon, you will be joining our little family of 3, making us a family of FOUR!

I personally think we're quite a fun bunch, and I hope you'll feel the same way too ๐Ÿ˜‚

And man, I still can't believe I'm actually saying this. Four.





It's been quite a journey of praying, wishing and trying to conceive with you. Just like any typical parents, with one boy already we were sort of wishing to have a girl next. But then I remembered telling God that as much as it would be nice to have a girl next (cos you know, society somehow has this perceived idea that a boy and a girl is a perfect pigeon pair), if He decides to grant us a son this time around, this son must be a special child that He wants us to have and raise and love.

And so we will. We knew from the moment we conceived that you were special. Out of a million you came out first (you'll understand this when you're old enough)! And you certainly did not come easy. So baby, you're our God-given gift, a strong and healthy baby who made it, who has been doing so, so well in mommy's belly that each time we visit the gynae, he only has good things to say about you- healthy, average, normal, good, fine. These are all the words that we want to hear, and they're all the words used to describe you.







Thank you for making mommy's pregnancy a bliss. Aside from the morning sickness and acid reflux every now and then (even now!), everything has been uneventful and normal that mommy can still work hard, juggle many things and achieve so much throughout this pregnancy!




In fact, mommy feels a lot better in this pregnancy compared to my pregnancy with kor kor. A lot of people has been commenting that I look a lot less bloated and swollen compared to my first pregnancy, and yes I do look and feel a lot better this time around! And I think you have a part to play in this.

Thank you for being the non-picky baby (please stay this way), because mama doesn't have any cravings at all. I have been totally easygoing with choice of food, and I can eat anything and reject nothing except the usual durian (sorry papa Boon!).

Thank you for being so alert and sensitive to my voice. In fact, even before I say a word in the morning, you already knew mama is awake and begin to move to assure me that you're doing alright.

Thank you that despite your level of activity in the belly (you can really move nonstop!), you never cause me too much pain or discomfort to miss a wink at night. I've been able to sleep really well and I hope it will continue when you're out ๐Ÿ˜›


Mama cannot wait to see you, hear your first cry, hold you, do cheek-to-cheek and skin-to-skin with you, nurse you, change you, hug you to sleep, kiss you and love you with all I am.

As much as I will miss my current freedom since your kor kor is already so grown up and independent (and been sleeping through the night since two years ago), I am ready to start all over and endure the sleepless nights, breastfeeding and pumping hassles and pain, going through another c-section recovery and painful weight loss journey, just to have you with us and grow up fine and healthily.

I'm ready for all of these sacrifices, because I know you are worth all of them.

Thank you for coming into my belly.
Thank you for coming into our family, into our world.

Our families and friends have been celebrating you, and everyone is excited and cannot wait to meet you!

See you real soon, and be excited because lots of love and warmth await you.

Love you, my dear baby.



With love, mommy.


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And oh, in case you're wondering if there are any behind-the-scenes aka failed shots from this Maternity Shoot, there of course will be!

Here are some BTS that failed to make it to the favourites above ๐Ÿ˜‚


Okay this one is fine. 
Just me checking out the shots from Gladys' camera midway through the shoot.


Tyler: What? Kiss mommy's belly? Okay I try.

Tyler: Is it like this? *presses whole face into belly*


In case you're wondering how Tyler lasted through the 2-hour shoot all happy and smiley, he did not, as you can see ๐Ÿ˜‚



He refused to get dressed, and was all ready to leave even before we started shooting him. It was hilarious seeing how he fussed impatiently half naked and rolling on the floor ๐Ÿ˜‚

I'm actually really glad that Gladys captured not just the beautiful shots but also raw and candid moments like these. They're precious all the same, just not IG-worthy only ๐Ÿ˜‚

And then of course, like in every family photo, Boon somehow ends up looking like a photobomber in most photos when he's supposed to look like he's a part of the picture.


Here's #PhotobomberBoon Take 1.


#PhotobomberBoon Take 2


#PhotobomberBoon Take 3 ๐Ÿ˜‚


And this one is my failed shot lol, when Tyler got excited when he saw Boon's belly (yes he has a weird belly obsession this boy), and proceeded to pull up his own shirt for some skin-to-skin with Boon. Yeap, things that happen at our home ๐Ÿ˜‚


Ending the post with one of my favourite shots from this B&W silhouette series ♡


This shoot wouldn't be a success without the following people:

Photographer: Gladys | Captured Gladness
- Website: www.gladystan.com

Thank you, my dear sis for capturing my tender maternity moments for me. I wanted something truly effortless, elegant and timeless, and you nailed every single bit of it. Thank you for making me feel so comfortable, for going great lengths in making sure we got all the right shots. I'm so grateful for you and I wish more people would get to experience your professionalism!


Lace Robes, Bralettes and Undergarments: Summer and Peach

- And to Wendy, ladyboss of Summer and Peach, thank you for coming to my rescue just a few days before the shoot! It was quite a last minute arrangement and if not for you and your beautiful pieces, I would have nothing to wear and this shoot wouldn't as it is without your gorgeous collection. Thank you for your kindness and generosity always. I loved just how beautiful and well made every piece was- from the bralette to underwear, to the pretty lace robes worn throughout the shoot! Thank you for helping to make this shoot happen the way it did.


Shoot Location: The White Atelier

- And of course, our cozy little atelier! No one to thank cos the space belongs to us lol. But if you're looking for a cozy space with ample natural sunlight to do photoshoots, we are open to renting our space for shoots of any sort so do drop us an email at hello@thewhiteatelier.co to inquire and chat further!


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Hope you guys enjoyed what will be my last post before I pop!

Grateful for all your love, support and well wishes sent my way throughout this pregnancy journey. I am indeed blessed and loved beyond words. Love and appreciate everyone of you.

Be back soon with my birth story :)
In the meantime, stay close to my IG @careentxy for the first updates!



Signing off,
Week 38, 3 days.



Love, Careen.
This post is filed under PersonalPregnancy

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