Why Mummy of Dragons?

So, I’ve accepted a blog challenge and the first “topic’ is to explain the meaning behind my blog name.

Funnily enough, I actually blogged about this not too long ago when I started this blog. You can look at THIS blog post to see the full explanation as to why I started this blog.

But I’ll summarize it here. I chose to call this blog Mummy of Dragons because:
– I wanted to actually call it Mother of Dragons but that’s copyrighted by Game of Thrones. And because I’m not Daenerys.
– I am a mummy to two adorable little dragons. I mean children. Of the male variety.
– I think that it sounds cool and is a bit catchy.

Is that reason enough? 😛

~~~

On another note, I am one of those mums who would probably dress their kids in identical clothing all the time if I could. I tried it the other day (including colour-coding hubby too). Don’t they look cute here? (Jacob is giving his death stare)

boys

We arrived early at church the other day and the lighting was just absolutely divine. So I tried to pretend I was a professional photographer and took some photos. A couple came out alright!

And of course, this is how NOT to take a photo of a toddler:

20160430_092947

Loving my boys, and loving autumn! 🙂

Advertisements

April.

Summer never truly arrived, and we are already into autumn. I have to say that this is one of my favourite times of the year because I love seeing the trees cloaked in coats of ever-changing colours, shedding them slowly onto the green grass. I don’t like the impending cold that is about to come, but I have some great memories to keep myself warm.20150322_080336Can’t have Easter without eating some hot cross buns! In all truth, we aren’t really into hot cross buns and Easter eggs; rather, we aim to keep the true meaning of Easter which resonates in the death and resurrection of Jesus. 🙂 20150405_123515During the Easter long weekend, we decided to head out to a kite festival at the beach. We didn’t buy a kite for Jacob but he had an awesome time looking at the kites, watching the steam train chug along and chasing the seagulls. 20150411_111833We had two weddings to go to recently – one was for a Uni friend of mine who was renewing her vows, and another was for Daniel’s cousin. On both occasions, I completely regretted putting Jacob in a white shirt due to the mess he made (though that is his only formal outfit – and you have to admit, the bow tie is cute!). 20150412_110753We took Jacob to the Baby Expo the other day and there was a petting zoo! Jacob loves animals and was squealing and stroking the little animals. He got to try out some Gymbaroo equipment as well, which he didn’t mind but was more interested in running away! 20150413_115946I love school holidays, particularly because we can all get up to mischief as a family! Whether it’s heading out to playgrounds or going shopping or merely sitting at home making a mess, it’s more fun when we’re together! ~~~ I’m having one of those nights where I’m listening to old songs and reading things I wrote a long time ago. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not necessarily sad, more pensive and nostalgic. And I often wonder just how much has changed and how much I’ve changed as a person over the years. One piece of writing that seems to resonate with me tonight is a poem I wrote when I was like 14 or 15. I think it got published in a yearbook or something. I think that I was quite perceptive at this age, but I could also have just been a daydreamy teenager.

My beautiful star
Sparkling, shining, scintillating
Silver and golden embers
Suddenly falls on a night
The whole world remembers
It feels so lost, so sad and hurt
It stumbles upon the lowly dirt
The night is darker than it seems
The star, lost in a schism
Crumbles and fades away
No one knows
How it felt that day
Only me

Sleep sleep sleep…

If there’s one thing I’d like today, it’s sleep! I think that as a new parent, you hear a lot of things like “Uh oh, you’re not going to get a lot of sleep!” but I don’t think you actually know what it means until you really experience it yourself.

Jacob was born at 8.00am – I laboured overnight and was a little bit tired by that morning, though I didn’t really feel it due to the euphoria and adrenaline of finally meeting my little baby. I remember the nurses asking me to sleep as they put him into the little crib beside me – and I couldn’t sleep! All I could think about was him (and all I was doing was taking photos of him!). I was told that he and I were fine and that I had the option to go home in the evening if I wanted to. Feeling a bit gung ho and like I was on top of the world, we agreed to be discharged at 6.00pm.

ImageOne of the photos I took of Jacob – oh, he was such a cute little thing!!

Oh my goodness, was I crazy? That night, Dan and I were taking turns cuddling our beautiful newborn baby who was just shrieking his head off all the way from midnight to about 6.30am. And that’s where I learned the meaning of “You’re going to lose some sleep.” It was only a few days later that we realised what would soothe him – this baby was a dummy-sucking baby! But anyway, on began our journey of interrupted sleep.

With this new “dummy” of his, Jacob was quite easily pacified. He did cry quite a bit (as babies often do) but we were able to get him into a 3-4 hourly routine (feed, sleep, wake up 3-4 hours later and repeat). And then he started sleeping 6-7 hour stints in the night (11pm to 5am/6am) which was quite a relief. And I thought, oh wow – have I actually got a baby that sleeps through?

I think another thing that new parents are not really told are the specifics of lost sleep – when it happens, why it happens and what on earth we have to do about it. Yes, I know I was supposed to do my homework before the baby was born, but nobody told me about things like wonder weeks, growth spurts, sleep regressions, etc. And so many times, people tell you that babies don’t go by the book (but I believe this is one area where they do go by the book, or at least it appears to be the case).

So, before anyone like me gets the impression that their child is a sleep guru, I just wanted to share some resources about these difficult periods of time. I’m not saying that your child will not be a good sleeper – I seriously hope and pray that he or she is, but it’s always good to know what to expect in case he or she isn’t.

Firstly, wonder weeks – at first I thought this was a good thing (and in a way, it is) like he’d become a wonder baby and suddenly learn how to change his own nappies or something. Wonder weeks are actually weeks of rapid mental development, where they make huge discoveries such as understanding cause and effect, recognising faces, mobility, etc. I know that I’ve looked at a number of resources, but this one from Essential Baby is quite a good one in explaining when and what happens in each wonder week phase.

Jacob is now about 39 weeks so he’s not really in a wonder week phase at the moment, but perhaps there are other things to explain his sleeping issues. When I say issues, I just mean interrupted sleep patterns at night. This time last week, he used to go to bed around 8.30pm and wake up around 3am for a feed, and then be fresh and happy the next morning at 6.30 or 7am. However, the last few nights, he’s been fighting off sleep so bedtime is usually after 9 (and it was 10 tonight because he crashed out at 5pm, so couldn’t sleep til 10) and he wakes frequently, only to want to wake up at 4.30am to play. No, 4.30am is NOT playtime.

Anyway, another thing close to my heart are sleep regressions, because Jacob seems to be quite “by the book” in terms of timeframes. So, I thought I’d worked everything out by 3 months and then when he turned 4 months old, sleep went haywire again. And I was asking myself “What am I doing wrong?”, “Is he teething?” (yes, he was actually – the teeth were moving under the gum), “How do I get him to sleep through again?”

It didn’t help that it was the heart of one of the hottest summers we’ve had in Adelaide for a very long time! But anyway, with a bit of perseverance, we got through it somehow (and it did help that Daniel was on school holidays, so he was here to back me up). Here is a good link with a bit more information about the 4 month sleep regression (and how to deal with it).

Next up, we had teething. Jacob was an early teether and his teeth were already moving around 4 months, but it was when he was about 5 months that his teeth actually cut through and we had a lot of tears (and a lot of Panadol). All the sleep routines we had were thrown out the window and a lot of cuddles were offered.

Anyway, when he was 6 months old, he was learning to crawl and probably had a growth spurt somewhere that ruled out all his 00 sized clothing. I remember when I was caring for him alone when Daniel was away on school camp, and I’m not sure why but he chose that week to put into effect his hourly wake-ups. It was quite a painful week, I have to admit, but we got through it!

And now, I believe we’re into the next sleep regression – the 8, 9, or 10 month regression coupled with a nap transition. So, basically he’s going through quite a few developmental leaps lately (and I notice them too – it’s really amazing). Here are a few things I’ve noticed happening in the last few weeks:

– He has sped up rapidly with crawling. Like, he’s pretty much walking pace if not faster. So if I put him somewhere and try to run off to do something, he’ll just catch me by the heel. When he’s in the bedroom (which is in the back of the house) and he hears Daniel open the front door, he heads all the way out there to investigate. I wonder if there’s such a sport at crawl-sprinting?

– He is always looking for me or for Daniel. If he sees me walk past the room he’s in, he’ll come looking for me because he knows I now exist even if he doesn’t see me. 

– Before, he would only say “Bababa” and “Gagaga” but lately he makes all these weird different sounds. It’s hilarious talking to him – he babbles things and does long “Ohhhhs” and “Aaaahhs”, or blows raspberries and makes rasping sounds. I love it when he’s noisy because I know he’s discovering new things that he can do vocally.

– He’s increased so much in coordination! The other day, I think he just discovered how to transfer things (in this case, a strawberry) from one hand to the other, and spent a good long time testing this theory. He also is much better at picking up things with his pincer grip, hence he can feed himself much more effectively now (unless he deliberately wants to squish something).

Aside from that, it seems as though he’s changing his own nap schedule. He’s been on two naps a day most of the time (and was relatively regular with them – 10.30am and 3.00pm) but now I’m finding he’s trying to skip his morning nap and will go down to sleep around lunchtime (which is a pain if he hasn’t had lunch yet, and then I end up feeding him lunch at 2pm!). But he’ll have a long sleep instead and power on until around 8 something at night. It’s still a transition so we still have struggles – I still try to put him down to bed at his old naptimes, but we can only wait and see what happens.

I read this resource which provides a bit of an insight into this particular sleep regression. This is another one from The Sleep Lady which helped me to pinpoint what he’s actually going through and how to handle it. This one is a blog post about sleep regressions in general, and I am looking to try some of her techniques (will report back on it later). 

If this all sounds like gibberish to you, don’t worry – if you’re not in that phase, I’d say don’t worry about it too much because really, there’s nothing much you can do to prepare for it (except to stock up on lots of chocolates and coffee). For now, just savour some beautiful shots (courtesy of mum in law) of Jacob playing in autumn leaves.

Image“Why are you not answering me, little angel?”

Image

“Maybe I’ll just chase the cat instead.”

Image
“You know what? Autumn is awesome!”

To all the mums out there – I wish you a restful night full of sleep and sweet dreams. ❤ Over and out (like a light!).

Playtime ;)

Okay, I finished one article so I feel justified to put up another blog post. Haha! For those of you that don’t know, I write for a Melbourne-based Malaysian magazine (goodness, the alliteration!) called JOM Magazine – feel free to have a look at their online component (and you can read the previous magazine issues) here.

Anyway, yesterday was the hottest April Fool’s Day in Adelaide for 127 years! I know I’ve ranted quite a bit about the weather but we really are having a hot hot HOT time – not the easiest with a little baby!

But since it was just 36 degrees, it was actually really nice! (Am I sounding crazy yet?) We had a really fun day!

20140401_132746_Android

How could we refuse the perfect excuse for a swim? It’s so different now as Jacob can sit up and splash around. Also, he’s outgrown his swimwear! *sob*

20140401_132250_Android

Skittles loves to come and join us when we’re swimming out here. She doesn’t get in the shell because it reminds her of having a bath, but she does like to drink the water and try to steal Jacob’s toys.

20140401_124951_Android

We also had a costume party recently so the play weapons came out! Here he is wielding a sword… or biting the foam. Whatever you want to call it.

20140401_125117_Android

And this is the winner of all photos for the day! Caught red-handed with mummy’s pirate gun! He’s such a poser. Love him to bits!

Alrighty, over and out. I guess it turned out to be a bit of a photo post but don’t we just love photos anyway? 🙂