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Early Bedtimes

I have been going to bed before 10pm for more than a month now…..  No prizes for guessing the reason correctly.. 

Last November I managed to get Meimei to return to her own bedroom… by buying her Sofia bedsheets! I was soooooo happy but sadly it didn’t last…. A few weeks later, she wanted to sleep on my bed again…. and this time she wanted me to stay in bed with her too! *CRY CRY CRY*

What, that would mean I wouldn’t have any me-time! How to read my books, watch tv, zuobo???!? Luckily at that time I had just finished watching a long drama (The Legend of Mi Yue, very nice!) and was still recuperating and had no desire to ‘chase’ any drama again in the near future. Anyway I had no choice but to give in to Meimei….

So, the kids go to bed by 9.30pm every night. While Meimei waits on my bed, I take my shower and then immediately reports back to her… Since I wake up at 5.30am every morning, I am too tired to get out of bed after waiting for her to fall asleep. Actually most nights I KO while she is still rolling around and talking to her doll. 

While it feels restrictive to have to be in bed with her so early every night, the bonus is I feel more rested and happier to wake up in the morning. Now I am up around 5.30am and have more time to exercise. I am trying to lose weight so an early bedtime is helping in many ways. Yesterday (Sunday) I got up at 5am and went for a 2-hour run! 😀 So far I have lost 2+ kg in four weeks… Jia you Jia you!

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Meimei’s Empty Bedroom

Before I started writing this post, I took a look at my previous post about Meimei’s sleep problems… and realized that gosh, she has been at it for more than a month!! HOW did I survive the past month!??

Anyway, I have given in completely. Now she is no longer napping and she goes to bed in my room every night…

After the initial refusal to nap, I decided that no, I must make her nap!! Because she’s only two years old! So I did…. she cried quite a bit but most of the time she did fall asleep… It wasn’t just CIO ok…. I didn’t leave her to cry in her room…. Because she could easily open her door now and kept opening the door and asking for this and that. I would refuse and she would cry….. 

Soon after, she refused to sleep at night too. Bedtime, kept opening her door just like nap time. I had to sit outside her door until she gave up and fell asleep… 

After two weeks of this, I decided I really don’t want her to cry so pitifully everyday anymore. I shall just give in to my princess. 

So, no need to nap in the afternoon anymore, because it takes too much of your tears to make you sleep. You can just hang around with us while I do some reading with your brothers. (You are already joining us for our morning reading anyway!) Mummy shall just cook fast fast then rush you off to bed fast fast after dinner! The dirty dishes can wait! 

You can sleep in our bedroom since that’s what you prefer. Mummy and Daddy will just shower in the other bathroom instead so that we won’t disturb your sleep. We will also just tiptoe around in the mornings so that you can sleep in longer hopefully. 

So far, Meimei has missed her nap for the past three days and did not even fall asleep in the car in the afternoon. That means she wasn’t tired, right? She has also gone to bed happily at bedtime. I don’t even have to stay with her… bring her in to my bed, kiss her goodnight and she quietly stays in bed till she KO. 

So, it’s now three of us in the master bedroom, the two brothers in one bedroom, and one nice empty room. 

The best part? Seeing my darling girl sound asleep so sweet when I go to bed too! : )

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Parenting The Youngest – Meimei we can co-sleep!

Inspired to share about this topic again. Because Her Highness Princess is acting up again. ARGH! I had been so very proud of her ability to sleep by herself since very young (five months old?), but recently she has been refusing to nap in the afternoon. Boo hoo hoo. Any parent will know a child’s refusal to nap is a disaster, right?

For the first few days, I felt quite upset about it. Though I mostly just gave in and let her skip the nap lah. But then I realised that hey, actually there’s nothing to stress about. So what if she doesn’t nap? The main problem is that I will not have any one-to-one time with the boys if Meimei doesn’t nap, but I can easily tell the boys that we can’t do one-to-one since Meimei is awake. They are old enough to understand and have been ok with it thus far. we are unschoolers so we don’t need structured learning activities. My rest is not affected either, since Meimei is very competent at independent play and doesn’t disturb me while I catch forty winks or do housework.

Another problem is, how can I ‘escape’ while she is awake? Almost every Saturday, I bring one or both boys out to run some errands or visit the library or do something which we can’t usually do with a toddler around. (The three of us went to Pulau Ubin last weekend! The boys cycled while I ran alongside them.) But I have also thought of a ‘solution’ for that – just leave and let Meimei cry lor…… she is already two years old… she has to learn to accept mummy saying byebye to her… And actually, once she gets used to this, I have More Freedom! Silver lining! YAY! (Sometimes, circumstances is the best motivation, otherwise I really don’t know when I will finally Just Do It.)

For a couple of nights this past week, Meimei woke up around midnight and refused to go back to sleep on her own. So…. urmmm, I just let her watch tv while I finished doing whatever I was doing (preparing meals for the next day.. take a shower.. watch drama serial), then I either slept in her bedroom next to her bed or let her sleep on my bed together. Watch tv during middle-of-the-night wakings??? This had NEVER happened to the two brothers!

The thing is, so what if Meimei wakes up every night and wanna join me on my bed or want me to sleep in her room? So what if she wants to drop her nap at two years old? It’s OK cos I don’t have to worry about taking care of a younger baby! With the two boys, I really thought very far ahead and was very worried they would develop bad habits making it impossible for me to manage with a new baby. But now, no such worries anymore! Suddenly, I quite agree with anti-sleep-training experts that babies will grow up and grow out of these ‘bad habits’ anyway.

Hmm, sometimes we read about the pros and cons of sleep training, co-sleeping, etc. I am thinking, perhaps it’s not about which is better, but about which is more suitable for each family in a certain situation.

And the good news is, today I tried having some reading and activity time with each boy while Meimei was awake. (They chose two books for me to read and we did a few brainteasers for a total of 30 minutes each.) Sometimes Meimei played on her own, sometimes she joined us to listen to the stories. When she got naughty, I threatened asked her whether she wanted to go for her nap, and she quickly backed off. Didn’t even need to be fierce. Hee hee 😛

Felt such a sense of relief when I saw that the previous post was less than a month old 😛 I have been busy cooking more for my family – more often, more dishes, more variety, healthier snacks. Also trying to go running every night. So many things I wanna blog about, but not enough time. As it is, I have not read any book for quite a while. But I have definitely not forgotten about or given up on this blog! : )

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Parenting The Youngest

After less than two years with Meimei, I can fully understand why the youngest often turns out to be spoilt more pampered than the older siblings. I have been giving in to her so much that even Hubby (who is the Good Guy while I am the Bad Guy) has commented about it. I used to wait out the boys’ tantrums, even if they were rolling around on the floor wailing while we were outside, no worries about embarrassment. But now, even if it’s just a whimper or sad face from Meimei, I usually surrender.

I am very sure that by 19 months old, both boys were already walking on their own 100% of the time while we were out without Hubby (he’s the Good Guy, remember? So they often ‘target’ him to carry them. But they never try it on me since eons ago.) But now, I am still carrying Meimei almost everywhere, almost all the time.

I guess no mother likes to be harsh strict firm for no reason. When Kor Kor was 19 months old, Didi had already been born, so I couldn’t possibly carry two kids. When Didi was 19 months old, I was already six months pregnant with Meimei, So there was strong motivation for me to train the boys to walk on their own. Not so for Meimei now. It’s easier to give in to her and just carry her.

It’s also out of necessity that now I must train her for certain things. For instance, she was sleep-trained at five months old, so that I could take care of three kids without help and maintain my sanity. And I really must train her to either play on her own or sit and listen while I am reading to them. Now she crawls all over me and grabs the book from me, which means that it’s very difficult for me to do any reading with the boys while she is awake. Not much time to read during Meimei’s nap either cos that’s almost Didi’s naptime too.

But no matter what, Meimei is always our princess. The boys know that unless there are special circumstances, the default mode is to Give In To Meimei 😛

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Princesses don’t need a reason to wear princess dress!

I had resisted buying princess dresses for Meimei because she did not have much hair yet, i.e. she didn’t look very girly yet. But when The Sunshine Kids offered to gift a dress to Meimei and I browsed through their online catalogue, my heart just said ‘yes yes yes!’ See, she does look girly and princessy, doesn’t she? *melt*

The dresses at The Sunshine Kids are designed especially for special occasions. They are also expanding their apparel line to include casual line for both boys and girls soon.

They have partnered with Agape Babies, to form a multi-store. This means customers can shop between both stores and checkout in one shopping cart. I have shopped at Agape Babies many times before, for baby essentials such as diapers, milk, skincare, organic food, toys, books and more! They are partnered with over 150 premium brands and retail over 3000 products. Do check out their new lifestyle & parenting blog, The Agape Lifestyle, too!

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Mummy is going to buy me more dresses for Christmas parties!

If you are also shopping for dresses for your girl this festive season, we have a discount code for our readers! Use the code “stayathomemumof3” to receive 15% off the dreses. Valid till 27 December 2014.

Disclaimer: We received a dress from The Sunshine Kids for review purposes. All opinions are mine.

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Why I Am Stopping At Three

So that I won’t have to change the name of my blog!

Kidding, of course, just kidding.

Why am I even thinking of having one more baby?

  1. Want a sister for Meimei. A sister is surely the best friend that one can have, especially when they are close in age.
  2. Meimei is such a sweet girl that I think she would be perfect as an elder sister.
  3. I am too free.
  4. I must be crazy!

I was actually really quite tempted to try to persuade Hubby to have one more child. With already three kids, I think one more or ten more (haha) won’t make much a difference to whether I can cope. Especially given my parenting style – sleep train the kids, teach them to eat by themselves, let them walk by themselves (instead of carrying them), etc. It’s give and take of course, more siblings to play with but less individual time with parents.

[Sidenote: Some people might say, already so little individual time now, cannot reduce! I say, since already so little individual time, doesn’t make much of a difference to cut a bit more 😛 And don’t think that I get a lot of individual time with my kids since I am a sahm. Argh. NO. But that’s another story for another post.]

Finally, the thing that makes me come to a firm decision to stop at three…

Other than the obvious problem of it might NOT be a sister after all, I really can’t bear to make Meimei give up her current throne of being the youngest and the only princess, to become a middle child >.<

Not that I happily made Kor Kor give up his Only Child Throne, or Didi his Youngest Throne… it’s different as we PLANNED to have three kids. Or if the fourth were an accident.. But since we planned to have three, there would have to be a greater and very powerful motivation to go beyond. And in this case, the motivation is simply not enough to overcome the deterrent.

 

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Just Like That.. I Am Mummy Cow No More…

Three nights ago, at the grand old age of 14 months and 16 days old, Meimei officially graduated from The School Of Breastfed Babies. *emo*

I have been wanting to wean her for a few months, but didn’t know how to go about it as she refused to take the bottle or drink any other milk. Wasn’t keen on imposing any ‘strong-armed’ method since there was actually no urgent reason for me to wean, other than vanity and convenience.

Thought that I might be breastfeeding Meimei till she’s three years old…? Maybe I would finally have the heart to refuse her then… But recently she has been drinking a lot of non-mummy milk, often pointing to the milk and nodding her head at me. ‘mum mum mum mum mum’ – babyspeak for eating. OK, no more worries about nutrient consumption then. (By now, I don’t think breast milk is significantly better than formula / fresh milk.)

But what about her sleep routine? Though she has been going to bed awake after nursing for many months, perhaps she is used to nursing as a cue for sleep? Hmm, I tried cutting out the feed before naptime, and it was a non-issue – she has a bottle in her high chair, then I carry her and tell her it’s time to sleep, give her some water, and she KO within five minutes after I put her in her cot.

Then finally, I decided to try going without nursing at night too. Was expecting some sort of drama… but… zilch. Nothing.

So, this is it. I am officially no longer a breastfeeding mother. Well done, mummy, for the total of 34.5 months of breastfeeding three children. A journey which started with a lot of tears and pain, and ends now in pride and satisfaction.

Gotta reward myself, of course. I give myself a deadline of ten days to buy new non-nursing bras (of which I have none now, other than sports bras). YAY!

still a bit emo. but i shall not ponder on it