Bonding Before Bed

I’m fascinated with how much has changed ever since Ethan turned one. He can now walk and he loves to explore. He can even “bless” (hand gesture as a sign of respect) and wave goodbye more frequently now. But what I love the most is how much more affectionate he has become which has led to more frequent bonding. He loves running to us, hugging our legs in excitement and he loves hugging even more at bedtime.
When Ethan was about two months old, I began to establish a night time routine which we managed to follow religiously. We’d wipe him down with warm water, change him into pajamas, give him a bottle of milk then sing him to sleep. Previously he would just fall asleep from all the singing, but now he loves cuddling next to me and sometimes even pats my arm or tummy – as if I’m the one who needs to go to sleep! It’s funny but adorable. Cuddling with him helps ease my stress from the day’s chores and it has become something I always look forward to before we sleep.
That’s not all though. Remember his separation anxiety that I mentioned in a previous post? Well, he doesn’t like sleeping next to anyone else  now but me and my husband. Ever since our yaya left my mom has been helping me look after him on days when I have to work. Recently when I slept over at my mom’s house with Ethan, I had to wake up in the middle of the night for a call with a client and asked my mom to switch with me so Ethan wouldn’t be alone. When I went back to the bedroom to get something I saw Ethan next to my mom, taking a close look at her face and when he realized it wasn’t me he looked around and started crying. I had to put him back to sleep!
I hope this isn’t just a phase and that he remains as affectionate as he grows up. Though his attachment to me may prove to be troublesome eventually, with some people discouraging it, I’m just going to enjoy all the night time cuddles and hugs right now. I reckon it’s just a great way to bond with him in a quiet manner – no toys, no singing Pororo, no TV. Just us, lots of lullabies, a story and a prayer before bed.
How do you bond with your baby?
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Surviving Without a Yaya

It’s been a while! I’m currently working on a LOOOOONG post about my son’s first birthday suppliers and I’m only halfway through because I’ve been so busy. I know it’s my same excuse every single time, but come on, we’re moms!

My son being adorable.

So anyway, I couldn’t focus much on blogging lately because I have to take care of my son full-time since my yaya (nanny) walked out on me. She was the first yaya I ever hired and honestly, she was good. She was always proactive and she didn’t require as much supervision. What I didn’t like about her was that she had this nasty attitude where she would always make snide comments while she’s next to the person she’s making fun of.

“Naku si Mama mo hindi nanaman daw magkakanin! Haha sige panindigan niya lang yan!”
(Your mom’s not going to eat rice again! Haha she should stick to that!)

I was right next to her when she said that. I was avoiding rice at the time because I was watching my weight as I was starting to gain dramatically. She did this to other people too. It became so annoying but I had to put up with it because I knew how hard it was to come by good help. One weekend I decided to let her take her day off because I needed her to be around the following weekend for my son’s first birthday. She left on a Saturday evening then promised to be back by Monday morning.

Then she pulled off a classic.

She texted me Monday morning claiming she couldn’t return yet because she had to bring her son to the doctor. I had to give her the benefit of the doubt, she used the “my child is sick” card and it would be cruel of me to accuse her of lying. Long story short, she didn’t come back and she spread stories about how I would make her starve and that I was hiding the coffee. Seriously? We always had food in the kitchen and I always bought coffee and left it on the dining room table. Why would I hide the coffee?? It turns out that the real reason why she did not come back was because she was offered a higher pay at another household. I couldn’t compete with that, so we just decided to let her go and look for a new yaya.

It’s been three weeks since and we still haven’t found a new yaya.

My husband and I decided to “wing it” for now until we could find one. It’s been pretty tough because we both work full-time and we both work night shifts – which means we both need to sleep during the day. What’s more is that our son is now more active than ever and he refuses to be left in his crib. He has this urge to always walk and follow us around the house even though he’s not used to being on his feet yet.

So how do we manage surviving without a yaya? We take turns looking after our son. I work from home from 9PM-6AM so right after work I look after him – feed him breakfast, wash and prepare his bottles, give him a bath and cook lunch. He tends to wake up earlier than 6AM so I let him watch some nursery rhyme videos on our iPad while I finish my shift. While I’m on baby duty, my husband sleeps from 6AM when he arrives from work until about noon. After lunch and washing the dishes, we switch and I get to sleep until about 5PM. My husband then starts to prep for work and leaves at around 6PM. I put my son to sleep at around 7:30PM but sometimes he doesn’t fall asleep until 8:30PM. Once he’s asleep I start prepping for work. If he cries in the middle of the night I take a real quick moment to put him back to sleep then get back to work.

Has it been easy? Absolutely not. But these things happen and we need to adjust, even if it makes us twice as tired as before.

I have to say though that being “yaya-less” has given me the chance to bond more with my son. Ever since he turned one, he’s become more affectionate but has also entered the separation anxiety stage. I’m glad that I am able to address his needs at this stage and that I am able to realize his changing needs as well. For example, as I mentioned earlier my son has this urge to walk all the time. Here in our house there really isn’t enough room for him to do that, so his yaya just lets him stay in the crib which makes him cry and fuss a lot. When the yaya was gone and I took over, I realized that I needed to find a way to let my son practice his motor skills so he can start walking. I started moving furniture around to make enough space for my son to walk around and play. Ever since then we has improved dramatically and he isn’t as fussy as he used to be. He enjoys the freedom to walk and play outside the confines of his small crib.

Do you think my yaya would have done the same thing? I don’t think so. There’s just these things that only us parents can and will do for our children. Now that I have realized this, I’m thinking of not hiring a yaya anymore. I’ve also grown to love the quality time I get to spend with my son. I guess that’s what tops it all off, like the proverbial cherry on a sundae.

Was there a time when you had to manage without a yaya? How did it go?

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Planning My Son’s First Birthday Party

How are you, clueless moms?

I still can’t believe that my son is turning one next month! Has it been a year already? When I look at my son nowadays I find myself thinking “Stop growing! Can you stay like this for a few years more?”. Sigh, but it is inevitable.. he’s growing up!

Now that he’s turning one, I want to go all out on his first birthday party however after giving it some thought, we decided to settle for something more reasonable. Though I just began my work-from-home job, we did come across some money and managed to secure a venue. At first, I was eying Shakey’s Pizza. Unfortunately though, there are no decent Shakey’s branches near our area. There is one along Evia Daang Hari, but they don’t hold birthday parties on weekends. Crazy, right?? I didn’t want to have the event catered either, it can be quite tiring having to speak to several people like with my son’s baptism. While doing some research, a lot of people recommended Fun Ranch to me. When I visited their website I thought it would be a perfect for my son’s first birthday and then I started bugging my husband about it. After a few weeks, I managed to visit Fun Ranch Alabang and reserve a room and date for my son’s first birthday!
from Google images

We chose the Main Barn which costs P35,000 and is good for 100 pax. It is spacious, neat and is right next to the play area. The P35,000 is inclusive of consumable food and drinks. I have yet to choose our menu, but I may focus more on their best sellers and recommendations.

What’s good about Fun Ranch is that they’re like this one-stop shop for parties – they offer other services such as entertainers, hosts, photo booths, food carts, etc. They may come across as expensive compared to others, however if you choose to bring in external party services, there is a corkage fee of P1000! I’m really lucky though that some of our family members offered to pitch in for some of the services and everything is coming together nicely.

I may finalize more details this week and would love to update you guys soon. I’m also planning to DIY the decorations so I hope that works well for me!

I’d love to hear feedback about Fun Ranch, especially about the food! Your suggestions are also welcome!

Catch you later, clueless moms!

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A Quick Update and A Big Thank You!


How are you, Clueless Moms?

Cancel my 9 o’clock, Mama. I have to watch Mickey Mouse.

I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed that it has been a while since I last posted, and I have a good reason for that! I’ve started training for my full-time home based job and it is pretty intense. I haven’t slept well in days and I think I’ve gained weight from stress-eating. Haha!

Anyway, I just wanted to drop by to tell you guys that I haven’t given up on this blog and that I do miss sharing stories with you. Also, I wanted to give a quick shout out to the moms who’ve sent me emails recently. I’m glad that my posts have been useful to you in some way, especially the one about my son’s baptism suppliers. I may have failed to respond to some recently because I’ve been very busy, but I’ll get back to you all soon.

Though I am welcome to receiving emails, I also encourage comments so that we can actively have discussions with each other here.

I’ll be back as soon as I pass my training. Please look forward to a few more product reviews and my son’s first trip to the beach!

Catch you later!

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Help! Is Your Baby Waking Up at 4AM To Play?

*pokes his cheeks*

I’ve been extremely sleep-deprived for the past few weeks because of my son’s new sleeping pattern. He used to wake up every four hours just to drink milk then would immediately fall back to sleep, but now, believe it or not –

..he wakes up at 4AM to crawl around and play!
Well, I guess you figured that from the title.

Am I the only mom going through this? I’m not even sure if this is normal or not. Seasoned and veteran moms, I would appreciate any advice! Let me give you an idea about our daily routine.

  • 7PM – I wash him with warm water, change his diapers and change him into pajamas.
  • 7:30PM – I sit with him in our living room, feeding him a bottle of milk while singing to him.
  • 8PM – Falls asleep. I move him to our bedroom. We co-sleep on the bed, it’s a mattress on the floor.
  • 12MN-1AM – He wakes up irritated, not really crying, asking for milk. Falls right to sleep without finishing the bottle.
  • 4AM – He wakes up again. Before, he would ask for another bottle of milk, but now he refuses to drink and just crawls around playing with his toys or anything he can grab.
  • 7AM-8AM – Somewhere between these hours he gets sleepy, sleeps for an hour or two
  • 9AM-10AM – Feeding time
  • 10AM-11AM – Bath time
  • 11AM-2PM – Play time, Feeding time
  • 2PM-4PM – He tends to take a quick nap some time between these hours
  • 4PM-7PM – Play time, Feeding time

This pretty much sums up our daily schedule although it does tend to change on some days.

I’ve read in an article that I should be putting him down to sleep while he is still awake, but sleepy. This teaches him to fall asleep on his own, even when he wakes up in the middle of the night. The article is titled What You Need To Know About Sleeping Through The Night (Part 2), it is actually a three part article.

So, what do you think, moms? Should I be sleep training my son and teach him to fall asleep on his own? Let me know what you think!

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