Wednesday, July 04, 2018

New Pet Technology! And Other Kohepets Goodies.

WOW. Handling my first newborn was actually easy, I mean I could make my whole world revolve around her and her needs. But now with my second newborn... I have to juggle not just his needs but also my 2 year old's. I can't even rest when baby naps because it's time to give my toddler some attention.

Poor Lola gets even lessssss of my time now. *guilt*

But Myla Rae adores Lola, and I hope new baby Michael will love her just as much.
Thankfully, I still find it easy to at least meet my doggy's basic needs because it's very convenient ordering her food and treats from . Here's what was delivered to Lola last week.

I don't pay any extra for this convenience (delivery to doorstep is free for orders over $60) and their prices are competitive, plus there are loads of promos and sales clearance items.

I picked quite a few things from their Great Singapore Sale listing.

Stocked up on Lola's tray food (5 for $6). It's a great deal! And there are many flavours to choose from. In this haul, I picked Monge Fresh Cod Fish Pate with Chunkies Tray Dog Food , Monge Fruit Chicken & Raspberry Pate with Chunkies Tray Dog Food and Monge Fresh Lamb Pate with Chunkies Tray Dog Food .

Monge does really yummy looking food for dogs and cats. It's made in Italy. Low in sugar recipe and no dyes or preservatives. I love that there are lots of chunkies in each bite.

I also stocked up on Cesar Tender Lamb With Country Vegetables Pate Tray Dog Food and Cesar Chicken & Cheese Pate Tray Dog Food. There's a bulk discount (11% cheaper) f you buy 12 trays ($1.70 each). Cesar's wet food is fortified with vitamins and minerals to help dogs of all sizes, especially small breeds, stay healthy. This trusted brand has been around for so many years.

I prefer tray food for Lola because they're convenient, easy to open (peel away seals), locked in freshness in each tray and just the right portion for a meal. Lola gets a different flavoured meal each day, and a wide variety of proteins... so it's chicken one day, lamb the next day, etc. She eats better than I do -_-

Also stocked up on the Cocoyo Pet Sheet Pee Pad again because of the awesome deal (buy 2 get 1 free). These sheets are very absorbant and good value for money.

Trying this treat for the first time, Bosch Country Meat Snack 100% Chicken Fillet Dog Treats looks great, a juicy and chewy piece of chicken fillet. Lola will love chewing on this. Such air-dried meat snacks make great chewing for dogs, and of course it's much safer and healthier compared to rawhide chews because it's a good source of protein, grain free and easily digestible.

There is a Launch Promotion now, $5 OFF all Bosch Country Meat Snack Dog Treats at Kohepets. So it's a good time to try these new treats.

They also have a new category now - Pet Technology with some very awesome pawsome products:

PETKIT COZY Smart Cool + Warm Pet House . This pet house is suitable for up to medium sized cats and dogs. Interior sensors that changes temperature according to your pet’s need. Infrared sensors that tracks and records your pet’s resting patterns and can connect to your smart phone. The price tag is $280 though.... but considering a non-smart pet bed/cushion can easily cost you $100 or so... it might be worthwhile investing in this seriously smart pet home.

They also have stuff like smart feeding bowls, smart drinking fountains, and bluetooth dog leashes... Click here to see the range.

Have you ever wondered about your pet's health? Petnostics Cat & Dog General Health Home Test Kit allows you to check and monitor your pet’s health at home. For just $26, this general kit allows you to test for Leukocyte, Nitrite, Urobilinogen, Protein, pH, Blood, SG, Ketone, Bilirubin and Glucose. Petnostics also sells individual kits which test for specific ailments such as UTIs, bladder stones and diabetes.

I highly recommend Kohepets to pawrents of dogs, cats or small animals for not just food and treats, but also the latest in pet tech, grooming accessories, health supplements and training gadgets.

Monday, July 02, 2018

My Second Pregnancy - The Aftermath

You know, my body got away very lightly with my first pregnancy. Out came baby Myla Rae and there was no stretchmarks, plus my belly pretty much flattened out straight after (while directly after birth, most women look a few months pregnant still).

With my second pregnancy, it was quite sobering, checking my now non existent abs out in the bathroom mirror the next day after Michael James' birth.
1 Day Post Partum with MICHAEL JAMES
My belly protruded so much. I had a strong core and a taut flat tummy before... this cannot be right?! I look 5 months pregnant!

This is quite bad, compared to when I had Myla Rae. I looked back at an old blog post a week after her birth, and this was my 1 week post partum belly back then.
1 week Post Partum with MYLA RAE
Csect scar 1 week Post Partum with MYLA RAE
Ok to have realistic expectations, here are some factors to consider:

1. Age. I'm now 37. When I had Myla Rae I was younger, at 35 (though 2 years isn't THAT much la).

2. My belly was much larger with this baby. This pregnancy went early full term to week 38, while with Myla Rae, I had her at week 35. Plus Michael is a significantly larger baby compared to Myla Rae, 1.5kgs heavier than her.

3. That pic I took in the Mount Alvernia hospital bathroom was day 1 post partum, while the ones taken when I had Myla Rae were 1 week post partum.

So I waited a week, and re took photos, and this is how my body is 1 week post partum.
1 Week Post Partum with MICHAEL JAMES
1 Week Post Partum with MICHAEL JAMES
Overall still LARGER compared to the photos in the purple sports bra.  But I think still okay, it did go down quite a bit within one week. I'll update you once I get my pre pregnancy body back... and once I hit my pre pregnancy weight (still loooong ass way to go). I'm 62kg now, was 72kg when pregnant. And before I got pregnant I was 45kg!  (Previous pregnancy, I was 48kg before getting pregnant, 67kg when pregnant and after pregnancy my weight dropped gradually but plateaued at around 52kg for a some of months before I suddenly dropped to 45kg).
Let me leave this here for aspirational purposes 
If I keep on my toes, have not much time to eat, I will get back there again (and yes 2 kids will keep me on my toes for much longer and more gruelingly so than just one kid). But prob a bit delay though cos my mother in law cooks for me every day and brings food to my house so I can go through some semblance of confinement. Otherwise I'm like dun want confinement.

 Let's see how long it will take.  :(

My only 2 consolations at the moment are----- NO STRETCHMARKS with this pregnancy either! So damn relieved! (click here to see my stretchmark creams comparison blog post)

And my new Csection scar is mucccch nicer this time round, thanks to Dr Clifford Chan. I was quite insistent on this lol.
Csect Scar with MICHAEL JAMES
He snipped off my old scar (which had some keloid) and gave me the steroid jab before stitching me up (supposed to prevent scarring). The scar is a very very fine line (the dark colour is actually the scabs from the stitches which should fall off soon). Much nicer compared to my old scar.

Now I just have to wait for that damn linea negra pigment line to fade off (it's much darker this time round). How long did it take for yours to fade? (I can't remember my previous timing for this).

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Letters to Michael James - Your Birth Story

Dearest Michael James,

You were born on the 20th of June 2018. And it took us by surprise. Your scheduled Csection was for the 22nd of June, a Friday, when you're at week 38. We opted for a repeat csection out of pure choice... you didn't need it from a medical stand point, it was a smooth, easy and low risk pregnancy (unlike what I had with your sister Myla Rae).
I was keen on a repeat Csection because my first surgery had practically zero recovery time, minimal discomfort in the days after it. Plus that Csection was a complicated one, while yours would be a very routine and low risk one. Also, you were turning out to be quite a whopper. If you stayed until 40Weeks, you would definitely be over 4 kilos. (No I don't have gestational diabetes, you're just a big boy).

In the weeks leading up to D-Day... I had a hunch that you wouldn't wait until your Csection date. So yes, hospital bags packed in advance. I even asked my gynea over the last few visits about WHAT DO I DO if I go into labour before the date. He told me that when I had contractions or the water bag bursts, go straight to Mount Alvernia and they will contact him. And he reassured me that it's not common to not make the week 38 elective csection date. Like out of 10 patients, 8 or 9 will make it to the date. Well guess who was lucky patient #10 ? Lol

The day before you arrived, I had what they call a bloody show. It's when you lose the mucus plug and it's blood streaked. But several people told me there's no need to go hospital yet, just wait for contractions... and even after contractions start there's still no need to rush until they're like 10 or 20 minutes apart. Of course I make my own informed decisions and I wasn't going to listen to that bullshit. Fuck, if my contractions 10 mins apart, how the fuck am I supposed to get to hospital, get assessed and then get my gynea to make his way down, and prep for surgery etc. Baby will be born liao!

But on the other hand, I didn't want to be that idiot that goes all the way to labour ward only to be told to go home because it's a false alarm or just nerves or braxton hicks. 

So I decided I would wait until I felt the first contraction.

The next morning at 4 am. I thought I felt it. Like a slight cramp. But still I wasn't sure... I never went into labour with Myla Rae, I don't know what contractions feel like. To me this cramp was negligible. I looked at your dad, sound asleep. I waited until 6 am when he sorta woke briefly, and I asked him if he had a terribly busy day at work? He said No.. why? Then I told him I started having contractions but I wasn't sure if they were contractions lol. 

So he asked if I wanted to go to the hospital straight away. I decided there would be time to shower, and then I ironed some of his work clothes for the following week (just in case baby does come and I won't have the time to do it), we drove from Sembawang to Pasir ris to drop Myla off. And then went to Mount Alvernia Hospital. We got there at 9plus am. As per my gynea's orders, I didn't eat or drink anything that morning, just in case I had to go for surgery.

We were directed to the labour ward. I was asked if i needed a wheelchair and I was like uh no I can walk there. Wtf Wheelchair?!! And it crossed my mind again, that I would be wasting everyone's time with a false alarm.

In labour ward they hooked me up to a monitor, and for 30 mins, NO CRAMPS OR CONTRACTIONS or whatever it was I was feeling. The nurse even double checked with me if I had been having contractions? Cos so far no contractions. 

*errr super sheepish look on my face*

Then another nurse came in and said my gynea asked to check if I was dilating yet. She stuck her fingers in there and four FUCKING FOUR of them slid painfully up my cervix. So apparently, I was already in active labour and have to prep for my csection already. (Luckily I wasn't sent home based on the lack of contractions!)

So our Dr Chan is on his way down (from his clinic in Pasir ris) to perform the csection (ETA 1pm), and I'm being prepped for surgery while your dad handles the paperwork and takes our bags up to our room.  

I'm lying on a gurney (is that what it's called? lol) in like a large holding room outside the operating theaters. And then my brain started to register the contractions. Oh man they are very uncomfortable. Like it's the kind of discomfort that will make your brain unable to think straight.

I'm watching the clock, please please hurry get to 1pm so we can start surgery. I'm also worried that maybe if like I dilate all the way then they're going to have to put me under GA (it works faster)... instead of just an epidural. And if so, then your dad won't be allowed into the operating theater to witness your birth.

Apparently it's a rainy day and roads are congested, so it's 1pm and I'm still lying there ....with the IV and catheter (pee tube) in so not like I can get off the gurney and walk about or even sit up. And like it's so uncomfortable for me to lie on my back for an extended period of time, I will feel quite breathless and just generally bad because my belly so big. And now plus the damn contractions.

I ask the nurses what the delay was, and they said that my doctor was on his way. Then some other nurse tells me to breath in through my mouth or nose or asshole or whatever... **in my head - Shut up you are annoying me!**

Finally at around 1.30pm. the anesthesiologist comes and introduces himself... plus said some other stuff I didn't listen to... because contractions lol.  Then asks if I had any questions? Just one.... when are you going to start the epidural?!

Then I was wheeled in to surgery, transferred onto the surgical bed thingy. They did more things with the IV, and what not. The anesthesiologist then rolled me to my side, knees up to my chest (or as far as they could reach cos belly in the way), boy was I thankful he's a big guy cos he practically did all the moving for me. 

Dr Chan arrives, with his scrubs and mask on, and says cheerfully, "Hi Holly! Can recognise me?"

-_-  YES *in the most un-amused tone I've ever used* (lol. that was the pain speaking) 

Actually both your dad and I love this doctor a lot. We were just saying yesterday that we will miss seeing him as our last visit to his clinic is tomorrow for my post surgery check up.

Once the epidural kicked in (very fast, within a few minutes of being rolled onto by side and felt some small pin pricks to my spine).

WOW WHAT A BIG DIFFERENCE. It's like a sudden wave of calmness and floatiness. *heavenly* (seriously people who do natural birth, I recommend you just take the epidural, there's no extra points for suffering, you'll be more in control and more in the moment to enjoy the birthing experience because you're not in bloody agony).

Then your daddy gets to come in to surgery and sit next to my head. Yay! So exciting!

Of course the surgery itself is painless. I could hear snipping (of flesh, muscle, skin etc). Your daddy peered over the sheet screen a few times because he was curious. Maybe he will share the gory details with you some day. Or write a guest post on my blog about his whole experience.
The immense crushing feeling on my ribcage which I had with the birth of your sister, was very mild this time. The Anesthesiologist did the pushing and he was very precise, like one shove and out you popped. Michael James, our son.
After I went to some recovery area to be monitored for 30 mins, I could go back to the ward and be with you and daddy.
And later that evening, your sister arrived to see you. She was excited to be a big sister and fawned over you (Btw, you're 10 days old now and she still does). 

That first evening, I was told by the nurses that I cannot eat or drink anything until my doctor checks me and clears me for food and drink. And Dr Chan would only come for his rounds the NEXT MORNING. Wah lau you want me to fast for more than 24hours?!

Meanwhile, your dad had already bought a mountain of sashimi for me (as promised). It was sitting in the room fridge... and Coke! Luckily, having our own room to ourselves, we can sneakily do whatever we want. So I ate some sashimi and had some very conservative sips of Coke. Oh mannnnnn that felt good.

30 minutes later, I vomited it all out (into a plastic bag because I could not leave my bed due to the catherter still in me and IV lines). You dad had to take the vomit bag out of the ward to dispose of the evidence hahaha. 

And guess what? I decided to give it another go. Lol. I ate some more sashimi and this time drank the Coke without restraint cos like.. vomit vomit lor. 

And then vomited.

Then your dad decided to stop the madness and said I better stop eating and wait until the morning as my intestines are obviously a mess (cos the csection surgery). 

We slept well that first night, despite having to wake a few times to feed you when the nurses wheeled your bassinet in for me to nurse you. The next morning, I finally got to have breakfast and yes I kept it down. And the catherter and IV lines were removed so I could start being mobile.
(By the way, this Csection was even better than the first, practically zero downtime and no pain. Dr Chan got skills)

So that my boy is your birth story. :) 

Hope you will always stay ahead in life. (No pressure lol)


Thursday, June 28, 2018

Review: Mount Alvernia - St. Michaels Ward

Hey you guys!
We just had a baby! 
Will write about Michael James' Birth Story in a few days. It was an emergency Csection... again   -_-  Will tell you all about the drama with this little whopper soon. 
There's loads I want to blog about... will slowly try to write post by post over the next few weeks, it's hard because I'm still juggling having a week old newborn and a 2yo (terrible twos yo... mild version.. but still exhausting!). 

For today, I want to share with you my experience at Mount Alvernia Hospital, and the ward I stayed in. I hope it's useful for those who are expecting and considering where to give birth. 

We chose Mount Alvernia because it's a Catholic hospital (both Adamson and I are Catholic), it's actually the most reasonable in terms of cost compared to all the other private hospital (I later found out it's non-profit?!), the whole vibe of the hospital is calming and my Gynea recommended this hospital as well (although he can deliver at any of the private hospitals). 

We chose the St Michael's ward which is made up of single bedder rooms. We thought it was quite apt since we were going to name our son Michael ... lol. But also, it's single bedded so my husband can stay over with me (he's a very involved husband and dad).
My room where I spent 3 pretty awesome nights. The first night we both slept like sooooo well, super comfy and super deep sleeps. The subsequent nights.... well, Michael's feeds became more frequent and longer (they are pro breast feeding). Uughhhhhh... so tiring. 
This is where dads sleep. They do provide lots of spare blankets and pillows. It's a pretty comfortable set up. Oh and by the way, the housekeeping auntie that cleans the room does such an excellent job, it's so dustless and clean. Plus she does it with such a cheerful demeanor, actually almost all the staff at St Michael's ward are very warm and friendly.
There's also a wardrobe, a safe, a mini fridge, a desk for my husband to do his work on.
The bathroom is huge.
Has all the safety features one might need. But to be absolutely honest, I was up and about and walking like normal the next morning once the catheter and IV drips were removed.
Oh by the way, there's an old wing and new wing or something like that so not all the rooms are nice and spacious. The one we viewed while on hospital tour previously was an old one that was more cramped. So glad we got the new one.
The perk of having a single room, is that there's no limit on your visitors (within reason of course). 
So family and friends could stream in, no problems.
This room allowed for us to have ample space to entertain Myla and her toddler energy.
And gave her a safe place to bond with her baby brother.
Meals were excellent, especially from the western menu (I had really good tenderloin steak, even though it had to be well done instead of medium). 
They also have a confinement menu but I don't belief in confinement, plus the dishes were not appetizing to me so I didn't choose any meals from there. But if you want confinement food, yes they do have it.
The special touch Mount Alvernia gives that no other hospital can is that they will bless your baby in the chapel there before you check out/get discharged.

Final bill was 7K plus in cash, after a 4K plus medisave claim. But I think ours is a little higher because emergency csect, and if we had made it to our elective csect date it would be slightly cheaper (we were told to expect it to be 8-10K before the medisave claim).

Next post I will share with you the birth experience :)

For now, I better get some shut eye before Michael wants his next feed.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Maternity Shoot Sneak Peek

OK...our baby might come a bit earlier than planned so imma quickly share some pics from the Maternity shoot we did 2 weeks ago. Will upload the rest of the maternity photos some time late next week, on Facebook.
We will also be doing the newborn shoot with the same studio (but have them come to our home for the newborn shoot instead, more convenient).
The company we used is Smile Moment Photography. Get your maternity shoot at $198 only! It's a really good deal. This includes maternity shoot outfits as well (or you can choose to wear your own). You can PM them for more info on this package at the Smile Moment Photography Facebook Page.
Our photographer Jason was so easy to work with, so efficient and set us all at ease during the shoot. Looking forward to working with him again for the newborn shoot once Michael arrives.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Longkang Fishing for Kids

Yesterday, Adamson took Myla to ORTO for longkang Fishing. It was their first time doing this sort of fishing.
For $12, you get an hour of fishing, a small plastic tank and a tiny net. There's a sign that says parents not allowed in the pond... but they do close one eye if the child is like just 1 or 2 years old toddling around, so quite a few parents were in the pond helping their toddlers.
Left to her own devices, Myla Rae would have caught zero guppies lol. They just don't have the reflexes for it yet at that age. Still, I would recommend taking your little ones there, as long as they can walk, I think it's a suitable learning activity for them.
We didn't stay the whole hour, we were there maybe 20 minutes, then Myla got bored of using the tiny net and preferred to sit in the pond and splash around like it's a swimming pool.

But while it lasted, she was very amused looking at the little fishies... and very delighted that she got to take daddy's her catch home.
Some advice though.... use insect repellent (!) there's mosquitoes there.  if you plan on taking home and keeping these as pets, you will need an air pump, a larger tank and anti chlorine for the water. 1/4 of her guppies died by the time we reached home (and we are a 5 min drive away!).... then the rest died by the next morning :/

It's not something we would do again, but definitely good fun for a one time family experience. We will only go back there when she's much older and can go in the pond and catch guppies on her own.  

P/S- Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. Especially to this wonderful man who has stepped up to the plate in more ways than I could ever imagine. Love u bubba, thank you.