Friday, July 29, 2011

About Pantang...with Azraa..

After having four babies and going through the whole process, the part that I hate most is during the 44 days confinement..that is the longest 44 days of my life...& can be the most stressful one. I guess I can't be confined in a place for too long..that does not work for me. I need to get a breathe of fresh air after some other place.

I had my pantang at my mom's house. We decided to ditch the idea of pantang in JB as we encountered some problem in obtaining a maid right after Azraa's birth. So the idea of hiring a confinement lady for 2 weeks at the very last minute was a brilliant one.

Hubby was still in Johor during the first 2 weeks of my pantang. Alhamdulillah he got a new job in KL. His last day at his old company was in the end of June..and his new job started in mid of July. So he had a 2 weeks rest at home helping me coping up with my pantang.

Mak restricted me from going up and down the stairs, so I had to choose on staying up or down. I choose up as that is where the Astro is..hehe...

So what TV lor. Here is my typical everyday life:-

8.00 am - wake up.
8.00 - 9.00 am - mandi, berbengkung, pilis and what not (has few sessions of urut in the first few days).
9.35 - 10.30 am - Desperate Housewives at 711.
10.30 - 12.00 - tukar2 channel..sometimes watch P.Ramlee movie..sometimes channel E!..AXN..
12.00 - 12.50 - Wanita Hari Ini
12.50 - 1.40 - NCIS at 710. Seriously, I've never watch NCIS rupanya!
1.40 - 4.00 - rest and nap time (usually I took a nap for abt an hour only, the rest I just lay in bed..).
4.00 pm - Layan slot Lagenda TV3.
4.30 - 5.30 pm - Switch to 104 - Awan Dania. Also never watched this before but due to recommendation by a friend saying that Dania is the only girl..and she has 3 brothers, I watched it.
5.30 - 6.00 pm - minum petang, mandi..another round of bengkung.
6.00 onwards - random and wait for the night to come..phobia, phobia..

Yup, during confinement, I'm always scared of the night time. While I was pregnant with Ashraff, I heard lots of stories whereby newborn does not usually sleep at night. So when I brought Ashraff home for the first time, I kept on looking at the clock and see whether he will sleep when the night comes. Alhamdulillah, he is a good night sleeper...and so were his brothers.

But not Azraa. I went through some tough nights with her, where she will wake up every hour screaming as though she was in pain. She will only sleep using my arms as her pillow...or else she will wake up immediately. Seriously, I got impatient with her at times. But after about one month or so, I already got used to it...and then I thought, I prayed for a healthy, perfect, easy to care girl throughout my pregnancy. So Allah granted me a healthy and perfect girl..but not the easy part. You don't always get what you want. But this does not mean that she will forever be like this. I suspected that she has some disturbed nights due to the gassy feeling in her tummy which the pain she could not tolerate. So that shall pass around 3 months old. The first 3 months is like the first trimester of pregnancy - it's the hardest one for me. After having to go through 4 colicky babies, I've made a conclusion that it is my overactive letdown that caused them to be gassy.

Like Aliff, Azraa also suffered from prolonged jaundice. She was admitted to the hospital for 3 nights when she was one week old. Then we had the jaundice checked every week until she was about one month old. Alhamdulillah, now she is fine.

Azraa was discharged on 27 June 2011.

After four children, I decided to use buaian elektrik (electric cradle?) for this one. All of my fours will have a longer nap when they are put on a moving gadgets/vehicle. We never use any for's dodoi all the way and his nap lasted for 1/2 hour only. We used the manual buaian for Aliff and that buaian has to be on the move all the time or else he'll wake up cranky due to insufficient sleep. With Aqieff, we use the bouncer and it has to be bounced all the time as well. To save the trouble, I decided to use buaian elektrik this time around so we could do other jobs like attending to the older kids rather than melayan kerenah si cilik je.

We bought this second-hand

Azraa is also using pacifier to soothe her just like Abang Ashraff and Abang Aqieff. I rried to refrain myself from giving in to the dummy but Azraa has great sucking need and due to my overactive letdown she hates to be on my breast except when she is hungry. We'll see how long does all these gadgets last this time around. It took Abang Ashraff 2 1/2 years and Aqieff 16 months.

Azraa has two sets of pacifier. One bought by Ayah and another by Ibu. Can you spot the difference?:)

So far, I still exclusively breastfeed Azraa. But I have a plan to start introducing her to formula as we might be going for a holiday (just me and Hubby) end of this year, insyaAllah.

My 'stocks' at the last day of my confinement. Not as much as Aliff's and Aqieff's sebab Ibu malas nak pam tapi bolehlah..

Next week Monday I will be going back to the office. Azraa will be taken care by a maid. Maid...yup..finally. We got a maid on 1 July 2011. A 30-year old lady named Minah. So far, she's doing a great job. And I hope this one stays..

Most people will ask me "will this be your last one?". For the time being, yup. Even if I got another boy, it shall be my last. After all, I'm no longer young. The last trimester with Azraa was I don't think I can go through it again. But who are we to know? Kalau dah ada rezeki, kami terima je dengan tangan terbuka. Just look at Lynette Scav0 of Desprerate Housewives..after so long, she got her no 5.

One month old Azraa
Weight : 4.4 kilos.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Birth of Our Lil Princess

Two weeks before the delivery, I had my usual check-up at APSH. It turned out to be that my blood pressure is at a borderline (unexpected..but not surprise as this is not my first case involving high BP). Since it was just borderline, Dr Fauziah gave me one week to monitor my blood pressure and if it surpassed the acceptable limit, I had to be put to labour straight away. For the next 7 days, every morning and evening, I had my BP checked at either the clinic at my office, or near my house, or at home with Mak's machine. Still under control.

After a week, I had to see her again. My BP is still at borderline. So she gave me one week MC (actually I asked for it..hehe) and instruct me to continue monitor my BP. If it is still under control, I were to come back another week and from there I can decide whether I want to be put into labour or continue being pregnant and let nature takes it course.

I came back to see my gynae after a week. Unfortunately, Dr Fauziah was on leave so a locum gynae i.e Dr Sharifah was in-charged that day. By then I could not take the ritual of having to monitor my BP daily, so I decided for her to induce me.

The date is 13th June 2011.

11.00 am
I was admitted to Room 324 of APSH.

Seriously APSH badly needs a make-over for their rooms.

At 1.00 pm
Nurse put one pill 'downunder' to induce the labour. And to my suprise, the pain starts immediately. This surprised me as in the case of Ashraff and Aliff, I did not feel the pain until water bag was broken. I don't know whether is it because my pain tolerance has increased or because of my age, but boy, was it painful..and it is not even dilated for more than 2 cms. Gosh!

4.15 pm
I was brought to labour room. Dilation only 2.5 cm. What a slow progress!

5.30 pm
Had my epidural jap. Just like my 3rd delivery, I did ask for epidural from the start, not because of the labour pain, but the pain that I had to bear when the episiotomy was done. Pelik tapi benar..hehe. But this time around, I'm glad I did ask for epidural, as I could not tolerate the labour pain. Entah kenapa. After the epidural, I could finally relax..and doze off.

At about 6.00 pm
Water bag was broken.

Around 6.15
Hubby told me he was hungry and going down to have a quick meal. I was only 4 cm dilated. I got a phone call from my cousin, Tini which I answered happily. Chat on the phone like I wasn't in labour. That's the beauty of epidural...hehe. At the same time, I could hear the person next door in her active labour.

At about 6.45 pm
Suddenly I feel the urge to push. I push the call button for the nurse. It took them few minutes to come as they are all attended to the delivery next door. In the meantime, I called up Hubby who was still enjoying his meal downstairs. "Yang, i rasa macam nak meneran dah!". "Ok, I datang sekarang."

The nurse came and checked on my cervix. "Ok, dah ready.." and she prepared the room for labour - the lights, the tools..and tried to call Dr Sharifah at the same time. She tried to call the doc numerous times but there seemed to be no answer. I was panicky..and I could not bear the need to push any longer. I was asked to hold on while she tried to get hold of the doctor. What?! Seriously, I was not an easy thing to do so I took the gas to ease the pain whenever the urge came. Finally she could talk to the doctor..and guess what, she had an emergency OT.

"Puan boleh tunggu lagi 15 minit?" 15 minit?! 1 minit pun dah tak boleh dah!

So the nurse was proactive enough. He called up the gynae next door who had just finished her delivery to attend to me. She is Dr Ariza. The moment she came in she immediately asked me to push.

At 7.07 pm
Our one & only princess was born! She is a healthy baby..alhamdulillah...

Name : Azraa binti Mohd Fitri
DOB : 13 June 2011 (11 days before the EDD)
Weight at Birth : 3.22 kg.

Length at Birth : 53 cms (all my children have the same length).

Suara dia boleh tahan..lantang..reminds me a lot of Abang Ashraff..

So if people ask me which gynae attends to me...I would say that for check-up is Dr Fauziah, but she was on leave so Dr Sharifah replaced her..but she had an emergency OT, so Dr Ariza yang sambut..phewhhh!

Dr Ariza doing episiotomy while Dr Sharifah with her OT outfit busy chatting with the nurse.

Welcome to the family, my dear Azraa! You are our precious gem that the Ibu & Ayah (& Abg Ashraff) have been waiting for. You complete us...and you are very lucky to have three big brothers to love and protect you.

Read about Ashraff's birth here, Aliff's birth here and Aqieff''s birth here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Ashraff & Exam..

Ashraff's mid-sem started yesterday. And seriously as a mother I have not done well to monitor and guide him..and am definitely not proud of it.

I could only bank on his intelligence and hope that he doesn't make any silly mistakes like in the past. Thank God Hubby was around the whole week last week so he did manage to teach Ashraff few subjects.

But that isn't the crucial part. The critical part is when Ashraff feel sick last Friday. He started to develop slight fever and liquid stool. And then it stopped for one day. Then on Sunday night, it started again. Although it's not like the normal case of food poisoning where you vomit and have frequent bowel movement, this time it's just one or two movement but it's in liquid form. I bought him to the clinic immediately.

Yesterday, he started to lose appetite. Mak had to bring him to the clinic again to get an MC while I called up the teacher to tell him about Ashraff's condition. The teacher told me he has to take the exam or else it will be forfeited and there is a big possibility that he might drop to a lower ranking class next year. Alamak!

So Mak again (to the rescue) drove him to the school and he took his exam in the school office. He started his first paper like any other students but he can move on to the next paper immediately. So all in all, he completed his exams (3 papers altogether) less than 1 1/2 hour.

I don't know how he perform in such condition but I just hope and pray he will be able to answer all the questions well.

As for now, I am not really worry about the exam but I'm worry about his health condition. He is losing weight and still the condition does not improve after 2 days. You see, after what had happened to arwah Abah, we are phobia when it comes to stomach problem. I hope that nothing serious has happened to Ashraff and it's just a temporary situation. We plan to bring him to see paeditrician once his exam is over and if the condition still persist.

For now, just pray that he is okay..keep on praying...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Handmade Gift for Teacher's Day.

The boys are excited over celebrating Teacher's Day at school. Especially Ashraff who has new set of teachers this year. One week in advance he has started to write notes to the teachers with the message 'I Love You' and put it in an envelope. He told me he wants to give his teachers on Teacher's Day.

Instead of having a plain white paper with brown envelope, I decided to bring him to our favourite stationery shop and bought few coloured paper stocks for him to make a proper handmade cards for his teachers. He decided to give his favourite teachers notebook as gift (ok yang ni tak handmadelah). Out of 9 teachers, he shortlisted to only 4 including his class teachers.

Of course, Aliff jumped in the bandwagon and decided to give his teachers too.

As for me, I intend to experiment with something new and decided to make paper bag from a normal envelope.

So starting Saturday night, the boys are busy making their teachers cards...

And me with the paper bag...voila! I did it!

And here is the finish product...

Inside : A Handmade Card and a notebook.

Inside: A Handmade Card and set of scented candle. I also bought smaller scented candle for the rest of his teachers. He has about 14 teachers altogether.

I guess this is going to be an annual event. And soon there will be Aqieff joining...

Lama-lama sure dah takde idea nak bagi apa.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

International Book Fair

Twice in a row we visited PWTC. Last Sunday is for SmartKids expo & today is for the International Book Fair.

Seriously it's been a loooonggg while I visited the Book Fair. I remember Mak used to bring me to the International Book Fair when I was young. That time it was held at Changkat Pavillion.

Anyway, book has been the family's common we burn quite a hole in our pocket for purchasing books today.

And somebody decided to get 'jiwang' a bit, so I bought myself this Malay novel. I can't remember when was the last time I read Malay novel..I think it's more than 5 years ago from my favourite Malay author, Lamia A1mal entitled 3 Wajah.

After that I always hesitate on buying one..afraid that some fictions have over-the-top lovey-dovey, too sentimental storyline.

But this book seems to attract me and it so happens the author is there to promote the book..

So just put on my reading gear, find time and start reading...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

My brand new gadget

I'm not a gadget freak..I don't have a capacity to do it..

So I will only get a new gadget when my old gadget is dysfunctional. And this time it involves my 3-year old phone. The casing broke, the screen got off and most importantly, the system keeps on hang/stuck so at times I could not received sms/calls on time.

So after almost two weeks of browsing the net, reading reviews, asking friends for feedback, I finally got myself a brand new gadget.

Wuhuuu! Eventually, Rafiqah is on smartphone...I hope it is a wise investment.

Currently, still in the godek-godek many things to explore, it can be overwhelming at time. Yelah, kami budak baru belajar..

Thank you so much Nokia 6220 for your wonderful companion for the past 3 years..I'm gonna miss you...

Oh by the way, Mak also got herself a new handphone today, after more than 5 years. Nokia X3 with touch-and-type function.

Canggih mak aku!

Friday, April 22, 2011

How do you shop for a Girl?

My dream, even before I got married, is to have a daughter. Primarily is of course because of the lovely girlish, pinkish, princess-like clothing. And then I have this visionary of accompanying them for a manicure, pedicure, spa and go into the you-comb-my-hair-i-comb-your-hair routine.

The thing is I grew up mostly with girls. Out of my 33 cousins, only 7 of them are boys and they are all way younger than I do. And I went to an all-girls school. So the thought of having a boy of my own, never seems to interest me.

But after having 3 wonderful boys, I lost touch of the 'girl world'. I learn to be tough and more aggresive, just to acclimatize with their world so that I do not feel left out.

I hardly look at the girls session everytime I shop. It's always t-shirts and pants with bright colors - red, yellow, blue, green and design with cars, balls, Ben10, Ultraman, Spiderman, Batman (and macam2 Man lagi).

Now when we know that it's going to be a girl this time around, we know that we have to start shopping before I get even heavier.

Okay, one thing, I still couldn't get over the fact that it's a girl. It's beyond my imagination. I need the gynae to tell me the gender everytime I went for a check-up..and I think I need to have at least two more ultrasound sessions before I'm betul-betul convinced (kes teruk ni). Only then, I'll really shop for one. And trust me, by that time I will be very heavy.

There was this one time when it so happened me and Hubby past by M0thercare. I told him let's see what we can buy for our girl (if it's really a girl).

So, after 7 years of ignoring completely that session, for the first time I actually touched and belek-belek a girl's dress...and I went completely blank!

"Kenapa tak menarik pun?"

As opposed to the bright colours for boys, girls wear pastel colours - pink, lilac, aqua, soft yellow..


"And femininenya...ada butterfly, ada flower..pastu gambar princess and fairy...

"Lepas tu ada leggingslah, skirtlah, dresslah..ishk tak pandai nak pilihlah!"

Hubby laughed hearing my comment.

At last, we ended up buying the boys' clothes.

Seriously, what happened to me after 7 years of buying boys' stuffs?

If I'm convinced enough that it is going to be a girl, I better learn to shop for one...and I think I need a companion who can show me how to shop for a girl coz now I'm totally clueless!

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Boys and Life

It's been a very long while since I update on the boys..So beware, it is a long entry...

The Matured and Serious Ashraff

Do you know that Ashraff is currently wearing glasses? Yes! He does...since November last year. His eyesight is deteriorating and we noticed it since he always read very closely to the book. And when his kindergarten teacher told us that he always walked in front of the class to take a look at the whiteboard, complaining that he could not see at the back, we had to bring him to see an eye specialist. And goodness me, he currently has the power of 200 for each eye. That's a lot for a start! And this is not my proudest moment.

I guess this runs in my gene as I started wearing glasses when I was in Standard One. Just like me, Ashraff has to wear specs because he read books with no proper lighting, which is very bad for the eyesight. Not because of using PC as he seldom does that. Anyway, is there a way to improve his eyesight especially at this tender age?

Oh yes, my boy is currently in Standard One for the past 4 months. It was rough start especially in the first few weeks as he had trouble finding his way to the right van to take him home...and then there is money issue - duit hilang, duit orang ambik, wallet tertinggal etc. There is also this classic situation where he left the entire school bag at school, and since he is in the afternoon session, so Ayah has to search for his bag at school during the night.

But now he is coping well, alhamdulillah. We have trained him to pack his own schoolbag so that he could and would not blame us if we left certain things or books. We also tell him to listen carefully to the teachers' instructions as this is no longer kindergarten where there is some form of written communication between teachers and parents.

Ashraff is no longer the tak-buat-homework-pun-takpe boy like he used to during his kindergarten days. Nowadays, he is very concern that he finishes all his homework as given. 'Takut cikgu marah', katanya. I hope he'll stay this way forever.
And why I said he is serious? Because indeed he is. He cannot take joke lightly. I always tell him to chill, but I guess he is the studious one in the family..and being a big brother, he matures fast as he knows he is the role model to his siblings. And now that Ayah is in Johor during weekdays, he has to take up the role of the man of the house. If Ibu tak sempat monitor kerja rumah Aliff, then Ashraff will be the one who do it. He will teach Aliff and make sure Aliff finishes his homework.

Now I'm training him to pray, at least Maghrib and Isya'. I told him that he is 7 years old now so if he doesn't do it that I will have to hit him with a cane/hanger. But so far, he is very cooperative in performing his solat. He has basic knowledge of it since he was in Islamic kindy for two years, except that after a while leaving kindy he tends to forget how to do it. We just need to remind and encourage him to do it..and hopefully if I can do it religiously enough, he can perform solat independently.

The Cheeky and Talkative Aliff

Aliff is going to be 5 this November. Still a chatter-box and I think he has the most word count in a day. He knows his ABC, 123 and Aliff, Ba, Ta well..and now he has started to spell and read simple words. He is still weak in spoken English. And I guess part of it is contributed by us. We seldom practice talking English with him.

Being a 2nd child, he has the 2nd child syndrome with him. He loves to bother his brother, both older and younger brother. Rasanya KPI (key performance indicator) dia ialah "dalam satu hari kena buat at least one of them cry". Seriously, that irritates the brother..and me.

He is not the type that you can slow talk to or negotiable. He just would not listen. Frankly speaking, he is the hardest to manage for the time being.

But he is also the one who knows how to melt your heart with his smiles, action and soothing words. Unlike Ashraff who is more individualistic, Aliff is more sensitive to how I feel. He knows when I'm feeling down. In fact, he is the only one who always come to me and massage my feet, back and shoulder and talk to the baby inside my tummy.

He is also the joker of the family. He doesn't realize that sometimes the words that came out from his mouth are funny enough to make us laugh.

Aliff is so into 'susu kalsium'..a name he called for fresh milk. He no longer an eater like he used. Pretty hard to make him eat, so I'm now resorting to giving him multivits with lysine to increase his appetite. He hates it so much because of the sweet taste - both the tablet and liquid form.

The Sweet Aqieff

Aqieff is going to be 2 in July, right after his sister/brother is born. Among the 3, I have to say that he has the slowest development in terms of speech, which worries me. Most people say it is just slow development, but I'm worried if it is more serious than that.

We went to see peaditrician last week and we were told that by this age, he has to know at least 10 words. I don't think he is anywhere near that. Yes, he understands instruction well and babbles a lot, trying hard to communicate with us, but no proper word comes out from his mouth. I'll wait until he is 2 years old and if things remain the same, I shall bring him to the speech therapist. Maybe, just maybe, it is slow development after all.

And lately he falls sick a lot. Almost every month he is on antibiotics. He is just like Ashraff at this age. I guess not breastfeeding them for long contributes to that, as Aliff isn't anywhere near that, so far. And just like Ashraff, he is also a choosy eater. Even at this age, he is still on cereal. We tried giving him porridge, but he will just throw up. But these few days he has started to show some improvement by wanting to eat rice. We gave him bit by bit as he still needs to learn how to chew and swallow. I think he will skip porridge completely and straight to eating rice.

He is also the easiest to manage so far, right from the day he was born. If not because of his illness which caused him to become cranky, Aqieff will usually play on his own or watch and interact with TV. Other than that, he will play with his brothers. He loves to dance to the music and I must say, he's good at it.

Despite the easy-going him, he still rise to the occassion everytime his brothers turns aggressive. He knows how to protect himself by turning himself into an equally aggressive little boy. He is catching up real fast with Aliff's height. If Aliff doesn't speed up, Aqieff might turn out to be taller than he is.

He is still my sweet lil Aqieff who loves to smile...

The boys common interest

1. Books

We don't have much toys in the house. But when it comes to books, it's a different ball game together. We have tonnes of them. We have a wall-to-wall bookcase, which placed all our books. Hubby of course with his CPA and MBA books. And me with my novels, arts and crafts books...and the boys, well, their books take the whole section...

I bought the set of Time Publishing Encyclopedia when Ashraff was about 3 years old. Paid by installment for 2 years, and only now, I can see it put to full use. The two boys love it.

Not only on the shelves, but on their study table as well...

Specifically, Ashraff loves to read books about animals...encyclopedia that is. He knows detailed facts about how many types of snakes, which is venomous and which isn't, and which snake can be found where. And there are five classes of animals - mammals, reptiles, amphibians, bird and fish...and what makes each classes different. What is vetebrata and what is inverbrata...the difference between herbivor, amnivor and carnivor. Wow! He is like a our in-house zoologist.

Aliff, on the other hand, loves robotics stuffs...machines, aircrafts etc. He told us he wants to be a pilot when he grows up. We told him to study hard and take care of his eyesight, don't fall into Ashraff's trap.

Above is the kind of book Aliff loves, other than the normal colouring and sticker book.

Aqieff has started to follow suit. He not only look at the picture, but he also pointed at the words, and sounds as though he is trying to read. Bunyi macam mengeja pun ada. Funny. Of course, he is on board books, hasil peninggalan abang-abangnya. Most of them are still in good condition.

2. Drawing and scribbling

The boys adore drawing according to their interest. Ashraff will go for animals..and sometimes cartoon characters. He can even make out simple quiz for us or Aliff to answer.

Apart from that, he can write stories based on the illustration made.

There's this one time, he made a complete book with illustration and storyline.

Aliff is into robots and building. He is improving really fast in drawing.

Aqieff, emmm...just scribble. But at this age, he already knows how to hold pencil properly, just like his brothers.

3. Balik Kampung Trip

The boys are always looking forward to a getaway at kampung. The things is we hardly could fulfill their request because Ayah has classes during weekends and even on long holidays. But now that Ayah has completed his MBA, we intend to go back to Pontian as often as we can. Plus, I look forward to the trip too.

The boys like to main batu every morning...evening...

Fuhh! Finally...I've managed to complete this entry..after taking about 4 days drafting and editing. Now it's time to publish...tadaa!