Yesterday, I recorded Alice and Dan's time together. Oh, it was super fun! Alice enjoyed her dad's company as you will see in the video at the end of this blog. I get a lot of that slow motion moments whenever they spend time together. It's as if my heart wants to keep all those memories. I love the thought that Alice would grow up close to Dan. Even before she was born, I have been declaring that she will be a daddy's girl. Yes, a daddy's girl and it's fine with me! It's not that I don't want her to be close with me (I DO want us to be super close), it's just that there is something that a father could offer that a mom cannot. Kids who are close to their father are more secure (that's just the way God designed it).
Some of the things I buy for Alice has a connection to her like these cloth diapers from Baby Barney One Stop Shop. Alice means noble, sweet and with humor. These cloth diapers pretty much represent who she is. Hehe! Minion for her humrous side. Wonderwoman for her noble side. And that in the middle for her sweet side. Plus of course, I really want her to be close to her dad.
Dan loves Alice so much. Even when I was still pregnant, he would talk to her and tell her how much he loves her. And now, Dan still talks to her and more! He cuddles her, makes her laugh, cleans her nose (which he super likes doing), prays for her, puts her to sleep, hugs her, kisses her... Haaay, I consider myself very blessed. Thank You Lord for Dan and Alice!
Last week, I found myself laughing, crying, laughing and crying again while reading the first chapter of My First, Second, & Third Attempts At Parenting (actually from introduction to chapter 1). The first chapter reminded me of my identity and my priorities. It also fueled my heart's desire to cherish every moment since we live for JUST A MOMENT. The chapter ended like this...
"Before we know it, our kids are grown and gone. Therefore, as parents, we must sieze every moment. Every moment..."
And yes, as much as I could, I seize every moment with Alice. Although I know that Alice wouldn't even remember this season, I still want to make every moment count!
Alice is now 3 months and I still love (and will always do) everything about her. I don't want to forget this season that is why I am writing this blog (so now I remember Bing Bong from Inside Out). Anyway, here are some of the things I love about our daughter:
I didn't know there were cloth books until just a month ago. I think I am happier than my baby when I got this from Go Land. Haha! Just look at how cute and how baby friendly they are! They are washable. They squeak. They are fun to read and are very colorful! I especially love the cloth book with teether! It's just the right book for Alice since a few months from now, she's going to have those cute little teeth.
Oh, these are just few of what I love about her. I love her eyes, nose, ears, lips, baby breath... Hmm... Ang bango! Oh, I wish that time would stand still so that I could have more time with her. Gosh, I couldn't help to think that one day she's not a baby anymore! Kaya nga kailangan talagang pahalagahan ang bawat sandali eh.
My heart is just full of wonderful memories! Thank You Lord!
Oh, oh, oh! Before I end this blog, I just want to say that Alice learned how to roll over last week! Hooray for an advanced developmental milestone! Yahoo!
It is true when people say that time flies when you enjoy it. Could you believe it? Alice just turned 3 months last week just like that! And because I know that her season of being a baby would just pass by like a breeze, I make sure I take photos and videos of her. Having a family photoshoot, of course, is on my list so we had one when Alice turned a month old.
The reason why I want to share with you this photoshoot is because I want to encourage you to:
1. DIY Your Photo Shoot
Building memories thru photo shoots could be budget friendly. Here are some few tips on how to make your own photo shoot:
2. Sieze Every Moment
Learn to pause and appreciate what God has blessed you with. Seasons come and go so take a time off. Don't look at your phone even just for a while! Talk to your spouse. Kiss your baby. Look at your family in slow motion. Breathe... Life is worth celebrating!
Life nowadays is very fast paced and having a photo shoot with your family is just one of the MANY WAYS on how you could slow down and seize (capture) the moment. I imagine myself looking at our photos in the future saying, "Ang bilis talaga ng panahon buti na lang ginawa namin ito. Ang sarap talagang mabuhay. Lord, ang buti mo sa buhay ko!"
3. Be Grateful
I don't know how many times have I mentioned on the blog how faithful God is in my life and I don't know if I would ever get tired of "bragging" about it... So, let me say it again, GOD IS FAITHFUL! He's blessed me with a great husband and now, a beautiful daughter. I couldn't help but be grateful for what He's done in my life!
You, too, could be grateful. I encourage you to exercise appreciating God's blessings. Bear in mind that every good and perfect gift comes from above (James 1:17). You could start thanking God for the little things like the food on your table, your pair of shoes or a simple hug from your husband/wife and a kiss from your kid/s. There are many things to be grateful for, just take time to think of it and learn to appreciate it. Remember that a thankful heart is a happy heart!
As promised on my previous blog, I have found yet another online store that sells fashionable yet cheap cloth diapers (CDs)! Introducing... Chicco's Crib! What I like about this store is that it sells Famicheer CDs. It is a brand of cloth diapers that has unique designs. Usually, the side snaps of CDs just continue the design of the "body" itself but with Famicheer, it has solid colors. According to my husband, Famicheer brand is, by far, his favorite! Look at Alice and my friends' babies wearing Famicheer. Ang cute nga naman, 'di ba?
Not only are they cute, they are also good in catching pees and poos as they have charcoal linings and double gussets (look at the picture below).
Anyway, the main reason why I want to blog about Chicco's Crib is because they are having a ONE DAY SALE tomorrow, October 14. Do drop by their store to know the mechanics of their sale.
If you happen to read this blog beyond October 14 though, it's okay... Their nappies are still cheap.
Have a blessed day my readers!
Yes, I am a cloth diapering mama. I have been using it with Alice for two months now and I have my own share of bloopers and successes while using it. As I am learning and discovering the "world" of cloth diapering, allow me to help other mothers and mothers-to-be (or fathers) by sharing it through my next blogs. I have quite a lot to share like what are the different types of cloth diapers, how to wash your diapers, how make your own wipes and many more! I am also going to share with you some of the online stores I have found that sells affordable and cute nappies so that you don't have to splurge your money on costly ones.
So far the cheapest online store I have found is Nifty Corners. They sell cloth diapers for LESS THAN P200 only (with microfiber inserts already)! Not only are they cheap, they are fashionable too! Look at what we got from their store below? Nice prints, right? After posting Alice's picture on Facebook and Instagram, serveral people asked me where I bought it. Well, you know the answer now. :D
Alva cloth diaper is:
Feel free to ask the owner of the online store as the terms used in cloth diapering are sort of like "alien" to many. Haha! Don't worry, the owner of the store is very friendly and patient to answer questions. Just head on to their Facebook page if you're planning to buy cloth diapers or just interested in cloth diapering.
4 Reasons Why I Choose Cloth Diapers
In May, Dan and I attended a birthing class where we had several classmates talking about cloth diapers.
Cloth diapers? What is that? I have no idea and have never heard of it so I did some research and was convinced that we have to use it.
Here are the reasons why we choose cloth diapers:
1. Less rashes. Although we already have a stash of cloth diapers even before Alice was born, we used disposable diapers for her first few days because we were given a lot of it. Sadly though, Alice developed prickly heat rashes from it. Ever since we used cloth diapers, her rashes lessened and eventually cleared out.
2. Environment-friendly. This is one of the main reasons why I want to use cloth diapers. Did you know that most disposable diapers take centuries to decompose? Using cloth diapers help our planet big time!
3. Cheap. Although a cloth diaper costs 200-400 each, it is reusable and adjustable. You only need 20-30 pieces of it and you could use it from infancy to toddlerhood. A diaper, on the other hand, is cheap per piece but is disposable. If you do the math, cloth diapers are still cheaper than disposable diapers in the long run.
4. Fashionable! Yes, cloth diapers are super cute! They look good especially when worn alone. Haha! I am having fun whenever I put on a different print on Alice depending on my mood. :P
And speaking of cute diapers, I came across an online store on Facebook that sells cloth diapers with a wide variety of designs. The cloth diaper Alice is wearing above is from them. Their cloth diapers are cheaper as compared to the ones in the malls and some online stores. The owner is friendly and very patient with all my questions (I have a lot, by the way) and the delivery is fast too! If you want to start using cloth diapers or are planning to increase your stash, this is the right time to check out GoLand ClothDiapers Closet because they are on promo (see below)!
Happy cloth diapering!
As some of you know, I am a newbie mama to our wonderful baby, Alice. She's one of the most precious gifts God has given me! Even though all she does is sleep, poo, pee, drink, cry, stare, wonder, smile, giggle and coo (she's turned two months the other day, by the way), I love her to the bits! It's an unexplainable love. And because I love her so much, I want to give what is best for her... I want to be the best parent I could ever be. So I've tried reading and asking some parents on how they raised their babies. Here are some of their answers:
"Co-sleep with your baby..."
"Let your baby sleep in the crib..."
"Teach her to sleep on her own, let the baby cry..."
"When your baby cries, get her..."
"Time her feeding..."
"Feed by demand..."
And the list goes on... Ano ba talaga ang pinaka-okay sa lahat? Some say this, some say that... I noticed that what they are recommending (and sometimes I feel like imposing, hehe) is what worked for them. I get confused sometimes. Of course, I am a first time mom, I don't know it all and I have sooooo much to learn. So with the many advices we get, Dan and I assess and experiment what works for us. One advice stood out from the rest though...
Two nights ago I had a conversation with a friend. She's a mom of two beautiful girls. I asked her the best parenting style and here's her answer:
"Marami kang mababasang types of parenting... I don't think merong perfect na type. You know what's best for your child. For me, basta you lead your child to God and build good character, yun yon."
She's so right! It's not about the type of parenting, it's about discipling your kids!
"And remember, God chose you and Dan to be the parents of Alice, that means your love and care is the best for Alice,"
Aww... I was so comforted by that truth! Dan's love language is gift and whenever he give presents, he makes sure that it is carefully thought of. If Dan, a human being is like that, how much more God, right? And yes, God carefully thought of giving Alice to us. He knew that we are the best parents to take care of her.
So let me comfort and encourage all the parents out there who sometimes get confused/guilty/discouraged/sad with the way they parent their kids...
P.S. Thank you ate Laidee for reminding me these two nights ago! Our conversation encouraged me big time. Love you!
Hello dear readers! It has been a while since I last blogged because I gave birth to our first baby, Alice, and have been busy adjusting to the new world of parenting! My days have been mostly dedicated to changing nappies, making our baby sleep and most especially breastfeeding.
Yes, I am a proud breastfeeding mama. Even before I got pregnant, I was convinced that breastfeeding is really best for babies. Dan and I have attended seminars that helped us prepare for it. So I was equipped and I thought breastfeeding would be that easy but apparently, it isn't (well, at least for me).
Shortly after giving birth, Alice was placed on me and she worked her way to find one of my breasts. Amazing! She's really made to drink milk from me. How wonderful! Our doula (birthing coach) was there to make sure she had the right latch... It hurt though... 'Di ko inakala, sakit pala (I never thought it would hurt). Oooouch!
The first week was taxing! Just imagine coming from almost a day of labor and then breastfeed every 2-3 hours. It was tiring... and breastfeeding still hurt no matter how hard I tried the right latch! I'd like to think that the reason behind it is because colostrum, the first milk, is thicker and harder to suck than regular milk. Because of that, my nipples hurt so I used nipple shields (forgive me) which helped me manage the pain. Don't worry, I used it only for two days.
The first week also made me doubt my milk production. I thought that maybe Alice does not get the right amount of milk because it looks like I don't have enough milk. But I learned from the seminars I attended that I have milk, hindi pwedeng wala! SO I didn't give up. I kept on breastfeeding because I know that Alice is getting the right quality and quantity of milk from me. After five days, I saw my milk (foremilk and hindmilk) was dripping out and breastfeeding wasn't that painful anymore! Yehey!
Breastfeeding is extra challenging but REWARDING! And throughout my short experience of doing so, I realized several things.
The road to breastfeeding is really not easy, it requires patience, perseverance and hard work, so to all the mommies who breastfeed, SALUDO PO AKO SA INYO (I salute you)! Happy World Breastfeeding Week and National Breastfeeding Month!
Since I want to build memories every season of my life, I have been looking for a way on how to have a maternity shoot. I don't want the shoot to be costly though because Dan and I would want to focus our resources to Alice. So I thought of looking for people who are able and willing to help us pull a wallet-friendly maternity photo shoot (hehe). Good thing I have friends from church and a sister-in-law who could help us!
Our friends got married on May 23 and Dan and I thought of scheduling the shoot that day because for the following reasons:
1. I was 30 weeks pregnant. Not too early and not too late for a maternity shoot!
2. I already had my make up and Dan & I are dressed up. Nice outfits for the shoot.
3. The wedding was in the morning so we have a lot of time to shoot in the afternoon.
4. The wedding venue's a great place for a photo shoot.
5. Our photographer was our friends' photographer too so he was ready to take our photos right after the wedding.
All went well for us! Thank You Lord! Happy family! Yey!
If you know Dan and I, we are not that romantic in public. We are not the type of couple who looks at each others eyes with sparkle. Haha! We just wanted our photos to be as candid as possible. So we told our photographer to just shoot while we're talking or laughing. That way, our photos will just like us - no pretensions.
It took us about 15 to 30 minutes only for our first shoot. Since it was really hot, we decided to already move to our next venue and not stay in Sun Valley.
Change Outfit & Venue
Second venue was at UP Town Center and our outfits were more relaxed.
Laugh trip once again!
Alice, we are so much excited for you! We love you so much!
I'd like to thank the following people for making the shoot possible:
1. Milcah Barrantes and Pam Belacora for conceptualizing and styling us. They were very patient with us and helped us look good in our photos.
2. Mavid Reyes for my makeup. Given a small amount of time, she did a great job! I just like my makeup because it's not too loud. For me, it's just the right day makeup. For inquiries, you may contact her at 0920-476-9669.
3. Gab Pili for the great photography! I cannot thank this man enough. He is really a good photographer considering he's still a student. He's been our church's go-to photographer because his passion and talent for photography just exudes. He specifically wants to shoot gigs. If you want to see more of his work, click here. Just send him a private message if you want to book him.
Ignite 2015 (Every Nation Campus Conference), our church's much-awaited event, came to an end two days ago! For those of you who don't know yet, Ignite is a gathering of students from all over the Philippines and Asia. I have never missed a single conference ever since it started, however, this year, while thousands of students and church leaders attended, Alice and I stayed at home for the first two days of the event. Dan and I agreed that I was to stay at home for some good reasons. While at home, I enjoyed being with Alice all the time. We eat, sleep, laugh and pray together. It's fun and sentimental when we pray for Dan, our church's event, our delivery and her future. I just love every memory we build together. I only attended the last day of our conference and I don't regret it because I am at peace to be at home with Alice and get ready for my delivery.
I am now 34 weeks pregnant and I can feel the excitement of finally having a baby in my arms! I know that before THE DAY comes, I have to be prepared. Just like what I said on my previous blog, unlike any other season, pregnancy is time-bound. It will just happen for nine months (per baby) so I treasure it and make the most out of every moment of it. One of the ways of making the most out of this season is to PREPARE. For the sake of organization though, this blog is about preparing for our delivery.
So, what have I been preparing for the past weeks? I listed some of my checklist below and I hope this could help current and future pregnant mommies.
Disclaimer: This is just my personal checklist. I just put here those I think are essential. There might be more so keep on searching and asking people! Also, the resources I have below especially the downloadable files are from Ms. Betty San Luis, our teacher and doula, and I asked for her permission to post it online.
My Personal Checklist
1. SSS / PhilHealth / Insurance. Early in my first trimester, our kind OB told us that we could get maternal benefits from SSS. While I know that I have benefits from PhilHealth (and to some, their insurances cover most if not all the maternity expenses), I didn't know that I could get a certain amount of money from SSS after giving birth. So I went to SSS and submitted the necessary documents. If you want to apply for this and you're not sure how to do it, just click this link.
2. Packing List. This is a checklist of what to bring to the hospital or lying-in. You may also refer to this list if you're planning to give birth at home (minus the doctor's admission orders and anything related to the hospital). You may download the file below.
3. Information Sheet. Just in case you are going to deliver at the hospital, you'll be needing this. This is a sheet where all the needed hospital information are in. Just imagine the hassle if a woman is already in labor and her husband or a relative or a friend, who wants to be with her, will be asked by a hospital staff informations about her pregnancy. Instead of focusing on encouraging and being with the pregnant woman, the companion would have to attend to the staff first, leaving the pregnant woman alone. If a husband/relative/friend has this, they could simply give it to the hospital staff and could focus on the pregnant woman's need.
4. Birth Plan.
As the name implies, this is a plan on how you want to give birth. This is important to discuss with your OB or midwife because this is where you will share them your preferences in giving birth whether it is medicated or unmedicated, with or without episiotomy, etc. Below is a more in-depth definition of a birth plan. It also has some helpful tips on making one.
You could search for sample birth plans so that you could have a guide. I hope you enjoy writing down your birth plan as you envision the coming out of your baby.
Okay, so that is my short checklist. Off to the more important stuff! More than the checklist though, I know that I have to prepare my mind, body and spirit. These three has to be united as my delivery day draws near.
In preparing the mind, I know I have to be knowledgable. I know I have to research and understand how the body works. It's a good thing I studied nursing so I already know the basics. But just because I'm a nurse, it doesn't mean I know everything, right? So Dan and I read books about pregnancy and delivery, asked (and is still asking) as many questions as we could to our OB, downloaded apps for us to better understand which phase are we in our pregnancy and invested time and money for seminars that would help prepare us in giving birth and taking care of our new born child.
Most of the seminars we attended are for free! St. Lukes and Medical City are constantly having free seminars for pregnant women. What I like about these seminars is that you get educated and you get freebies too! Haha! If you're near Taytay, I encourage you to visit Shiphrah, a birthing home, and attend their seminars. It is very practical. In fact, among the free seminars we attended, Dan liked Shiphrah's the most even though it's not as grand as the others.
We also attended a class with a fee but it's really worth it! If you have the resources, I highly recommend that you attend Birth Basics Workshop by Ms. Betty San Luis. Although somehow I know the topics already since I have studied it in school, there were still new things that I have learned. It's also good that the workshop is designed not just for pregnant women but also for husbands. I like that the workshop is facilitated by Ms. Betty and her husband. It helped us to understand more the role of each person as we go through pregnancy and delivery. After the workshop, I think something changed in the way Dan sees pregnancy and delivery. It opened his eyes to choosing a more natural birth (which I am a believer every since I was single). Hooray!
Could I just say that I have the most supportive husband in the world? Never did he miss a single check up, a single seminar nor a single update in the app! He is always the first one who reads aloud or text me what week are we in our pregnancy and tells me what our baby's developments for the week are. I am a blessed wife!
Of course, if I expect a healthy baby, I should be a healthy mommy! I had a late wake up call on this though. It happened when I was on my 6th or 7th month. In just 5 or 6 weeks, I gained a looooot of pounds! I am conscious with the way I look but not THAT conscious with the food I am eating. Yikes!
I found out in one of the seminars I attended that the saying, "Oh wag mong pigilan sarili mong kumain. Kain ka lang kasi dalawa kayong kumakain," is not true. I am not eating for two people, my baby only needs a few calories. Her stomach is not as big as mine, in fact it's smaller than a hazelnut, so I don't need to eat for two adult people. Get it?
I also learned that having a proper diet is the right thing to do! Haha! Yeah, I know that before, but I wasn't able to apply it. Although I still get tempted a lot of times and still give in to unhealthy food sometimes (PLEASE FORGIVE ME), I know that I eat healthier now. I look at the labels and watch what I eat. I am more mindful that whatever I eat, Alice gets.
Exercise is also a key to being a healthy mommy. It's a good thing that even before I got pregnant, I was trained by a friend of mine (hello Stan!) to work out. So my body is used to working out. When I got pregnant though, I knew that I have to somehow slowdown. So what I do now is yoga. Dan bought me a Mama Yoga DVD and it's helping me (and some walk and household chores) stay fit. Mama Yoga is a type of exercise that is especially made for pregnant women. It will help you prepare for your delivery.
MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE though, right now I concentrate on preparing my spirit. As I have written above, I am a believer of a natural birth, actually a supernatural birth to be exact. I could attend all the seminars and be knowledgable about pregnancy and delivery but if I fail to prepare spiritually then I might loose this fight of faith. I condition my spirit by meditating and declaring God's Word and it assures me of His good, pleasing and perfect will.
Ever since the day I got pregnant, the Word of God kept me sane! In my pregnancy journey, I encountered a lot of fears but the Word of God made me courageous, secure and confident! I remember in my first trimester, I was afraid because of the horror of miscarriage stories people tell me (even without me asking them). But as I look at the Bible I was reminded that it is God who knits the baby in the mother's womb (Psalm 139:13) and it is God who fearfully and wonderfully makes a person (Psalm 139:14). Then I realized that if God, the Creator of heaven and earth is the one who creates a baby and a mother, then they are not faulty! God designed the mother's body to carry a full term baby and God designed the baby not be miscarried! In fact, in the Bible, all who got pregnant delivered! No one miscarried!
One time I was worrying because I thought that I might not be giving the best nutrition to my baby. I just drank folic acid when we figured out we're pregnant, about 5 weeks already from the day of conception. I was worrying because something might happen to our baby's brain development just because I wasn't able to drink folic acid. But God reminded me of Solomon. He asked for wisdom and God gave him wisdom (2 Chronicles 1:11-12). James 1:5 says that God gives wisdom to those who asks without finding fault. So instead of worrying, I was confident to ask God for my baby's wisdom and I know now she is a wise baby!
While I was reading the Bible, God spoke to me through Jacob's life. It's as if God told me that He will protect me and Alice as He protected Jacob (Genesis 28:15)... So even though I was exposed to chicken pox, was once food poisoned, travelled via tricycle on a super bumpy road (take note, it is really super bumpy), the promise of God's protection prevailed and is still prevailing!
As I enter the last stretch of pregnancy, what I am meditating on now is the POWER OF GOD. I recite verses that would keep me confident in delivering our baby. Verses above are already modified (my version).
"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:13)
"All things are possible with God." (Matthew 19:26)
"This is the confidence I have in approaching God: that if I ask anything according to God's will, I have what I asked of him." (I John 5:14)
I can tell you tons of stories and revelations I got from God's Word (maybe on my next blogs), but I think you get the point now. If I want to REALLY prepare for my delivery, I have to DEVOUR the WORD OF GOD! GOD'S WORD gave me and is still giving confidence in my upcoming delivery and I am assured that I will see His power when I give birth. It is God who gets the glory because at the end of the day, delivering a baby is only made possible by a miracle-working God! This is one of the best preparations I ever had in my entire life!
Hi, I am Phoebe! I'm a happy wife and mama. I love to sing, dress up, travel and build happy memories especially with my family. Right now, I enjoy managing our home and independently homeschooling my toddler. SEE MORE.
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Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits...