Monday, September 27, 2010

Ella and her uncle

Ella met her uncle for the first time last weekend. I was worried that she might be cranky, as she’s starting to recognise faces. But surprisingly, she took to him very quickly. She must know that he’s her uncle. Or perhaps, she mistook him for a taller version of her grandfather, my father; or a substitute for another uncle, my cousin. Whatever the reason, she enjoyed playing with him. Here’s a great pic of the two of them together.

Little EV is teething!

EV’s first teeth has appeared! From just little white lumps, her teeth have broken through her gums to make their grand appearance. We must count ourselves lucky that we have such a good natured baby. Other than more drool, more biting on teethers, light change in her defecation, and a mild case of crying in the middle of the night, EV has taken this milestone of her life rather well. She is really treating her parents well. Soon, she will be showing off more of her teeth during the holiday season, while we sing ‘All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth’. She will blow the house down with her sparking toothy grin!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Review: Sophie the Giraffe

The power of the Internet as a tool to influence purchase decisions is not a force to be reckoned with. I must confess: I recently fell victim to it. Photos of ‘endorsements’ by celebrity moms or babies holding on to it, and feedback from mothers who swear by it, were coercing me, convincing me that yes, I must let my darling EV enjoy the wonderful benefits that it brings. My EV must enjoy what these celebrity babies are enjoying – a privileged teether by the name of Sophie the Giraffe.
And why shouldn’t she enjoy a teether made of 100% natural rubber and food paint? And because it has a name, it is easy for EV to establish an emotional connection: ‘EV, do you want to play with Sophie? How about a kiss from Sophie?’ Definitely, this can’t be done with her other ‘hand-shaped’ teether. And it comes from a land of well-established international brands too - France!
But hey, I’m not the true teether connoisseur; EV is. There’s her verdict of Sophie the Giraffe, as interpreted by me.
a) Effectiveness
Sophie’s long legs reach into EV’s mouth to give her sore back gums a good massage. She loves the squeaky sound it makes too, and enjoys having Sophie kiss her on the cheek. Its long neck and legs make it easy for EV to hold with her small hands.
b) Wash
Easily washable with water. No detergent is required.
c) My ultimate rave
Soft with numerous chewable parts such as ears, horns and legs – easy for EV to chew on.
d) My ultimate rant
EV’s mouth smells of rubber after a chewing session with Sophie. This could be due to the natural rubber scent. Sophie is also vulnerable to black dirt marks, which are hard to wash off, even when using baby-safe detergent. 

e) Overall value (3.5/5)

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Review: Pupsik Studio Baby Pouch Sling

Another reward I got for myself for hitting the ‘6-months breastfeeding’ benchmark. I’ve been eyeing on a baby pouch for some time now, and finally made the decision to invest in one. I had earlier inherited a preloved baby sling from a good girlfriend. While it was adjustable, this ‘sarong’ had too much cloth, and I had a hard time balancing the baby and fiddling with the wooden rings and excess fabric. So a more snugly fit one is in order – perhaps I’m too small sized.
A quick internet search led me to online baby boutique Pupsik Studio. I had already heard of this boutique when I chanced upon its bean pillows at Mothercare. However, why buy a $25.90 bean pillow when you can make your own for a few dollars, using dried bean sprouts husks that costs just 50 cents from the market and cloth material from Chinatown. But, I’m digressing.
The compactly designed baby pouch slings were more reasonably priced and from $45.90 onwards, are much cheaper than some others in the market. There are different sizes for people of different weights to ensure a snug fit for both baby and mummy. So unless your partner is of the same size and weight as you, you will need to get another one for your better half.
I got the Baby Pouch Sling in Strawberry Caramel design. The first time I opened up the package, the fitted pouch carrier might seem a little confusing to use. This is because there are different ways of putting on the pouch, depending on the age of the child and the method of carrying – cradle carry (0-3 months), kangaroo carry (3-6 months) or front carry (4 months – toddlerhood). There is a downloadable pdf and demonstration video on wearing instructions on the Pupsik Studio website. 
Here's how I tested it:
a) Laundry
The sling is made of slightly stretchable fabric and the elasticity did not waver even after washing. Neither did the colour run. It can be hand or machine washed cold, which is extremely convenient.
b) Effectiveness
I use the pouch by front carrying EV. Initially, I needed my better half to help shift the pouch so EV can sit on it, but after a few tries, I mastered the art of putting it on with EV in my arms. Once it has all been figured out (remember: practice makes perfect!), it is just a simple case of popping EV in the pouch and off we go on our adventures! 
c) My ultimate rave
The pouch takes the strain and aches out of the arms, as EV’s weight is now distributed evenly, rather than just on the arms. My arms are now free to do other stuff. 
d) My ultimate rant
Honestly, I have no complains. It is a worthwhile investment. The real test however, comes when we head to Hong Kong for a family holiday and much shopping and sightseeing is expected on the itinerary.
e) Overall value (4/5)
A good investment that will be tested to the ultimate during our family trip to Hong Kong. More on this after our holiday.