Prince Turns 6 Months Old

06.28.13 Hooray! We’re halfway to his 1st year! Whew, it was honestly a tough one for a newbie mom. I had a lot of questions like are his arms short, what’s with that poop color, does he love mommy and daddy, will he love football, where will he study – A LOT. Thank God there’s internet that introduced me to the world of mommy forums, a Pedia who patiently answered all my concerns, a loving husband and daddy to Prince, and His unfailing Word that gave me a HUGE dose of patience, wisdom, peace, strength and grace.

Happy Mommy,

Love,Nica

Graces for Meg

A fellow mommy accounts her little baby’s battle against Biliary Atresia, an obstruction of the ducts carrying bile from liver to intestine. Baby Meg just had a Kasai operation, but will soon need a liver transplant. Please VISIT and SHARE … Continue reading

Bridal Fairs 2013: Tips and Schedules

Bridal Fairs are obviously the perfect marketplace for wedding planning. With around 470,000 weddings happening in the Philippines (source: NSO 2011), Bridal Fairs help bring each dream wedding to life.

Bridal Fair

Planning to visit one? Here are some tips to make your trip a “Piece of Cake”. (Plus: a list of expos happening this year)

Pre-register online. This will not only waive the entrance fees, but also save you from the hassle of waiting in loooong registration lines. If you have time, check the list of exhibitors too (this is usually posted in the event website). It will help you plan who to visit and book, and even grab better promos like getting free food tasting passes from participating caterers.

Prepare thy self. For the Bride: Wear comfy flats and be ready for an at least 2-hour visit. Bring an extra bag for flyers. Try not to put makeup or if you can’t, wear something light - most makeup artists offer free trial makeups during expos. For the groom: Support your bride and don’t hesitate to share your thoughts. It’s your wedding too anyway. :)

Plot your date. Secure your church (wedding date) first. Aside from they don’t usually join expos and they’re always the first one to get fully booked right away, it would be a hassle for you and the suppliers if you will book a tentative date and venue.

Put together tools and ideas. Come in prepared. First, finalize your wedding budget and the size of your wedding. You will be meeting different suppliers, with different price ranges. As much as possible, stick to your budget. You don’t want to start your marriage in debt, right? Then, decide on what you need and what you are looking for. It would be wise to bring your wedding pegs to give suppliers an idea on what you would want to have. This can generate accurate quotes too.

Pocket the cash. It’s best to book during fairs to avail of good deals and discounts. Not comfy bringing hard cash? Some accept credit cards for your convenience. Most suppliers don’t accept check payments. :)

Learn trends, meet & greet suppliers, get huge discounts (5-15% off), and win great prices! Attend the next Bridal Fair in town!

Bridal Fairs 2013

list source: kasal.com

Happy Planning!

Love,Nica

Preparing for Baby’s Arrival?

Or Creating a Baby Shower Registry?

Here’s the list King and I used for Our Little Prince. We live in a tropical country so please try to adjust some clothing materials if you live in colder countries.

Btw, don˙t feel pressured to complete all of these in a snap. Some Items can wait.

49560508

NURSERY

  • Crib
  • Crib Mattress
  • Musical Mobile for Crib. Get one in high contrasting colors to stimulate brain activity.
  • Dresser
  • Changing Area
  • Night Light
  • Lullaby Speakers to play music. I played mainly Classical and infused other genres too.
  • Crib Linens: 5 fitted crib sheets, 2 waterproof mattress pads
  • Beddings: 2 Comforters, 2 Side Pillows, 1 head Pillow, 3 light blankets

DIAPER TIME

  • 90 newborn size per week for the 1st six weeks, then 50 per week. Pampers is the best (may depend on your preference).
  • Diaper Wipes (Alcohol-Free). Wet Cotton Balls is a safe, cheaper alternative. Got the tip from the NICU.
  • Diaper Rash Ointment
  • Petroleum Jelly
  • Cornstarch Powder
  • Changing Pad to Lie On
  • Airtight Trash Can for Soiled Diapers

BABY˙S FIRST CLOTHES

  • 7 Onesies in 3-month Size
  • 7 Night Suits in 3-month Size
  • 4 Short sleeves shirts
  • 4 Long sleeves shirts
  • 7 Leggings or Light Pants
  • 2 Outer layers (sweaters, fleece jackets, sweat shirts)
  • 7 pairs of cute socks
  • 2 receiving blankets
  • 2 blankets to cover baby in crib
  • 2 beanies. For the cool baby.
  • Light mittens
  • Shoes for the cool baby :)

BATH TIME

  • Bath Tub
  • Bath Cradle
  • 2 Hooded Bath Towels
  • 7 washcloths
  • Baby Shampoo and Bath Soap. We used Cetaphil – Pedia’s pick. Now using Johnson’s Top-to-Toe. :)
  • Baby Lotion
  • Baby Cologne
  • Baby Brush and Comb
  • Cotton Buds
  • Rounded-tip clippers
  • Bulb Syringe Nasal Aspirator

BABY LAUNDRY

  • Detergent Safe Soaps. I use Cycles.

FEEDING TIME for 0-6 Months (Breast Feeding)

  • Nursing Pillow
  • Breast Pump
  • Breast Milk Storage Bags
  • 4 4 oz Bottles
  • Bottle Drying Rack
  • Bottle Warmer
  • Bottle Sterilizer
  • Cooler for Transporting and Ice Packs to keep it cold
  • 12 Nipples and Covers
  • 2 Bottle and Nipple Brush
  • 9 Burp Cloths
  • 6 Bibs
  • Pacifier
  • Teether
  • Bottle Cleaner. Using Avent Nipple Bottle Brush and Cradle Bottle Cleaner.

FEEDING TIME for 0-6 Months (Formula Feeding)

  • 4 4 oz Bottles
  • 3 9 oz Bottles (For convenience)
  • Bottle Drying Rack
  • Bottle Sterilizer
  • Cooler for Transporting and Ice Packs to keep it cold
  • 12 Nipples and Covers
  • 2 Bottle and Nipple Brush
  • 9 Burp Cloths
  • 6 Bibs
  • Pacifier
  • Teether
  • Bottle Cleaner. Using Avent Nipple Bottle Brush and Cradle Bottle Cleaner.

BABY FIRST AID KIT

  • Thermometer
  • Calibrated Medicine Dropper
  • Pain Reliever / Fever Reducer Medicine
  • Small Gauze Squares (to clean wounds)
  • Hydrogen Peroxide (to clean wounds)
  • Wound Cream
  • Small Bandages
  • Cool Mist Vaporizer
  • Baby Tylenol
  • Fluid Replacement for Diarrhea
  • Teething Toys

BABY ENTERTAINMENT

  • Play Mat or Gym
  • Soft Toys
  • Soft Books.

GEARS

  • Stroller
  • Infant Car Seat. Convertibles are the best.
  • Baby Carrier Basket. Optional.
  • Baby Backpack Carrier

BABY-ON-THE-GO

  • Diaper Bag. Tip: Get a bag that either Daddy and Mommy can carry. I got a grey bag so it can go well with any outfit too.
  • 5-6 Diapers
  • Baby Wipes
  • Scented Biodegradable Trash Bag. Optional but nice to have. I love the powder-scented type.
  • 2 Set of Clothes
  • 1 Outer Layer
  • 1 Receiving Blanket
  • 1 Beanie
  • 2 Burp Clothes/Bibs
  • Alcohol
  • Grooming Kit
  • First Aid Kit

FOR BREASTFEEDING MOM

  • Baby Book of Firsts or Baby Scrapbook
  • Maternity Pads
  • Nursing Bra
  • Lanolin ointment
  • Hot/cold gel packs
  • Breast pads
  • Breast Shields
  • Flowers and Gifts from Daddy/Hubby!

FOR MOM

  • Baby Book of Firsts or Baby Scrapbook
  • Maternity Pads
  • Flowers and Gifts from Daddy/Hubby!

For parents-to-be,

Love,Nica

When Our Little Prince Decided to Welcome 2013 With Us

12.27.12

I woke up that morning feeling so excited to finally start preparing our little kingdom for our little Prince, having finished ALL my events for 2012. At 11 AM, we were done with the Baby registry! But little did I know that a huge surprise will be up our way the following day – we were originally expecting his birth by early February 2013.

12.28.12

1 AM I started feeling quite weird with my desire to go the bathroom.

5 AM Have been visiting the bathroom – thrice already – for constant stomach contractions.

9 AM Noticed a blood dropped down there. I still had no clue that I was already in labor.

Love (King), Panic mode!

Define Emergency. King stood up really slow. Went to the Bathroom. Read a bit thinking it might be a false alarm. Around 10 mins after, he walked out the bathroom, then brushed his teeth. Uhmmm. Hello?

9.45 AM In the hospital. In front the Delivery Room. Contractions every 2 minutes got more intense.

Should we knock & greet ˙Happy New Year˙?

10.20 AM Prince˙s out at 36 weeks.

20130313-180041.jpg 3 Weeks at the NICU
20130313-180209.jpg Happy at 1 month
20130313-180333.jpg A morning with Mommy at 2 months
20130313-180449.jpg Look! I can hold my bottle already!

PS, I honestly felt worried at first, but God is really faithful to make our little Prince catch up that fast as if he wasn’t born a little early as expected.

20130313-180716.jpg

For this I will PRAISE you among the nations, and SING to your name. Psalm 18:49

Note To My Brother: I’ll Make a Horrible Sister-in-Law…

… IF AND ONLY IF God will not be at the center of your future relationship.

DEAREST William,

Or “God’s Will” as we joke. It’s not that I don’t trust you when it’s about riding the love train and in finding God’s one. It’s not that I am not ready for it. BUT my dream gave me an impression that everything that was happening aren’t in line with God’s timing.

20130312-050527.jpg

My brother, a Deutsche Analyst for a year now, 23 years old, NO GIRLFRIEND, got engaged! YES, ENGAGED!!! He proposed faster than Dwayne Johnson in his movie “Faster”.

SCENE 1: In my dream (haha I have to consistently remind), my brother posted something like “Hi guys, you may watch my proposal video here”. Weird weird weird. They were in pink Taekwondo uniforms with some friends, and the video shows my brother in his fighting stunt.

Evil Sister-in-Law-to-be Act 1: I left a comment saying, “I DON’T LIKE!!!! AND NEVER WILL!!!”

SCENE 2: A formal dinner, brother’s Fiancée in deep blue plain dress, shows her diamond ring that looks like my engagement ring. Fiancée’s face isn’t visible. Haha

Evil Sister-in-Law-to-be Act 2: I stood up, and shouted, “How dare you! You bought a ring that looks the same as mine!!!” then walked out.

The ending of it isn’t clear. But there’s one thing I am sure of, and I repeat… I will make a horrible sister-in-law IF God will not be at the center of my brother’s or my cousin’s or my anaks’ (close friends we treat as our kids) or my Prince’s relationships.

Oh and I have to clarify, I don’t think I can act rudely the same way I was portrayed in my dream :P

20130312-051514.jpg

Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4:12

Planning a Nautical Party

With less than a week to plan, here’s my take on planning an intimate nautical dinner for my birthday last May (late post sorry).

THEME. A concept that would go well with our house (the beach house) was the first thing I had to decide on.

Princess Ariel, The Little Mermaid? Age inappropriate I thought. I don’t want to be having a tea party in mermaid tail with my mermaid friends.

Beach? Set design would be too expensive.

Santorini-ish? My personal fave but too wedding-ish.

Then I landed on Nautical. Red, Blue, White. Mature enough and easy to design.

DECOR. I asked my cousin, Kate, for a creative helping hand. Using Yarns, Cartolina Papers, and glue stick (for a total of less than Php 200), we came up with Sailor Paper Hats, tiny paper boat decors, and awesome nautical banners. We also found a nice sea waves blanket we used as a carpet, beside King’s wakeboard.

ATTIRE. Of course we should blend in. Each wore her nautical-inspired clothing. :D

FOOD. Seafood obviously is the best option. But considering our stocks? Red Wine… Pastas… I went ahead with red meat. Army Navy do serve beef anyway. For appetizers, I just served the usual fruits and nuts platter, and not-so-healthy chips on the side. For dinner, we had red sauce pasta, steak, and a glass of wine! The nights’ highlight… Choco Fondue (my first try to make ever). Tastes like Flat Tops though. Not sure if that’s good. :P  .

GIVE-AWAY. This one’s unplanned. With so much food left, everyone had enough packed meal to take home plus sweet goodies waiting to be taken home from our fridge. :)

Thanks “Curls” for celebrating with me!

Oh Boy! That Is Why I˙m Sooooo Lazy

That˙s why you˙re so lazy to put your make-up on…

I˙m not sure if it˙s one of those old-wives˙ tales or my mom-in-law was just guessing… but one thing˙s finally sure: It˙s a Boy!

Around 17 weeks, we finally saw our very active little prince turn and toss inside my belly, and show his cute little thing. King can˙t believe what he saw and it took him for about an hour to believe that we˙re having a boy and that our (silent) prayers were actually answered. :P #awesomeGod

Now, I can˙t wait to  start planning the baby shower. <3

(photo got from rockabyebabyobx.com)

FIRST TRIMESTER OVER!

Here˙s why I˙m totally excited to move on (or rather, here˙s why I hated the 1st Tri, specifically the 3rd month) :

1. A bit scared to drink medicines and I guess Iron was the culprit. My system had a hard time accepting it, thus making the nausea worse.

2. Heard of the 10-hour (beauty) sleep? It became a reality and still I felt tired at times. I know… not sooo productive. :(

3. Can˙t wait to feel the baby kick or move. Some moms feel it on their 4th month. It˙s like waiting forever.

Oh… And thank you for my loving husband, King, who really took time in building an improvised home studio and taking these photos. And sorry for the no make-up look. :P