Monday, March 23, 2015

Sick girlies!

I've got my hands full with two sick girlies.

It started two weeks ago, when Mia got a tummy bug. I think it broke down her immune system, because she wasn't even completely better from that bug, then she got a cold with a runny nose and a cough.

Ella followed shortly on her heels, not only with a runny nose and a cough, but cutting four teeth at the same time. Lil miss grumpy pants!

I got a prescription from the GP that had treated Mia's tummy bug, and both girls went on a course of Celestamine and nebulising meds, Pulmicort. Also used Monte-Air sprinkles, to no avail.  Carried on with Demazin for Mia and Allergex for Ella.

Those meds didn't help.

Then last week Thursday night Mia coughed the whole night. Literally, coughing in her sleep, the whole night. Saturday night, Ella starts the same.  Last night every time Ella coughed she cried - obviously hurting her chest or throat each time.  Since Saturday night Mia had a constant low-grade fever too.  We were at Sun City for the weekend with my folks - lesson learnt - don't go anywhere with sick kiddies! Couldn't swim, couldn't sleep much...

First thing this morning I phoned for paediatrician appointments.  The girlies have different paeds - it just happened that way that when Mia was born that I took her to Unitas to Dr Engelbrecht, and since then have always gone to either her, or dr Da Gama.  Neither of them were available, so we made an appointment with dr Grobler.  Then, I couldn't get Ella an appointment there, as she's not an existing patient of theirs!  I take Ella to dr Angela Colquhoun, at Kloof Mediclinic, who was the paed present at her birth and assisted with her jaundice.  I tried to get a double appointment there, but same story - Mia isn't an existing patient so I couldn't get a slot for her!

So we had a 9am appointment for Mia at Unitas and then a 11h45 appointment for Ella at Kloof.  Goodness me!

Mia's doc listened to my long list of meds we've already given, and then listened to Mia's chest. She sent us for x-rays of her chest and sinuses - Mia was such a brave girly, so proud of her.  Results came back - thank goodness not an infection in her lungs - just a really bad sinus infection. The doc prescribed antibiotics - and sinus physio.

Then I dropped Mia off at home and fetched Ella for her appointment.  I really like dr Angela and it's a pity it's so difficult to get new patients in there - I'd literally have to book a "check-up" for Mia, because the waiting list for new patients is 4 weeks, and feels like such a waste of money, R700 for an unnecessary consultation, just to get her in the books as a patient!

Ella was diagnosed with Adenovirus, which is basically a bad cold.  Her symptoms are much the same as Mia's, except she hasn't had a fever, thankfully, but her eyes have been a lil bit gunky.  So she's on antibiotics as well, more nebulising meds, nose spray and eye drops.

I was quite relieved, dr Angela said I don't have to take Mia for sinus physio - I can just nebulise her with the same meds as Ella.  I think the physio treatment would be quite traumatic for Mia, although I've heard it to be very effective.

So! Hopefully the two littlies will be on the road to recovery quick-quick.  This mommy needs a good night of sleep...

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

These two, they fill my world with colour!

Every single day, I am filled with such an overwhelming feeling of love for these two lil human beings of mine. Mine! How lucky can one mommy be!

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Mia Mooi is growing so beautifully.  She is sensitive, compassionate and caring. She is so friendly, greeting people in town and even striking up conversations. (More with adults, not so much with kids!)

She talks non-stop, understands so well and asks a million questions a day. "What do bears eat? What do butterflies eat? How high can a cat jump? When are we going on a picnic?"

She loves her baby sister, plays with her, gives her hugs and kisses. And sometimes pushes her away or pulls her legs to make her fall over. Oops.

She's loving school and her self-confidence has grown in leaps and bounds.

She loves going for walks on the golf course.

She loves doing arts and crafts type things at home - colouring inside the lines so nicely now, using the correct colours for things, like green grass and blue skies.  She loves cutting out, sticking, painting.

Mia enjoys listening to my music with me in the car.  We've been stuck on Taylor Swift for a few months already now! She also loves One Republic and Bobby van Jaarsveld, hehehe!

After months and months of watching Barbie movies, she's gone off that a bit now, and mostly requests to watch Tarzan episodes, DocMcStuffins and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  She's not watching as much tv as she used to a while ago - prefers to be busy with other things.

She is getting very independent with things like undressing herself, bathing herself and brushing her teeth, going to the toilet, choosing what to wear, etc. Big girl!

I just love the way she gives spontaneous hugs and kisses. ♥

Ella-Bella-Bytjie has made our family complete - this little bubbling happy person.  When she gets excited, like if she sees one of her family members, or a toy she loves or a food she wants, she kicks her little leggies in glee.

She's loving being mobile and keeps her mommy on her toes!  She's exploring everywhere, and picks up the tiniest speck she can find and puts it in her mouth... She even tries to eat bubbles when we blow bubbles outside!

She loves eating, really eats so well, not interested in baby food, only wants what we're eating! She especially loves chicken, pasta, peas, mielies and sweet potato.  But her favourite treats are marie biscuits, marshmallows and droe wors - especially the marshmallows.

She says "mamma", "pappa", "baba" and "num-num" (yummy). She responds to the question "hoe maak die voeltjie?" with a hadeda sound, "ha-haaaa!"  Very vocal in other ways too, demanding attention with shouts, enjoying herself with squeals, grunts and laughs.  She also gives an open-mouth smooch if I ask for a kissy! ♥  The best.

 She loves going for walks in the pram, stares at everything in amazement, and laughs at the dog when I take Nala with us.

She sometimes laughs at the most random things, like watching her sister brush her teeth, she seems to find hilarious!

She's started showing some interest in watching some tv, especially Lollos, keeps her attention for a good 10 - 15 minutes, which helps me a lot when I'm trying to do supper prep.

She's currently teething, toofie number 3, 4, 5, AND 6 are all busy making an appearance at once.

Our Moms&Babes class once a week is a favourite for both of us, special one-on-one time for us.

She's super pleased with her latest accomplishment of standing up against furniture. Crawling isn't enough, this baba wants to stand and walk too!

She has a way of crawling up to me and putting her head down on me - makes my heart explode! ♥

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Thursday, March 12, 2015

Activities for 10 month old babies

Ella is at such a busy stage now! I have to constantly be hovering around her, because she crawls to all the off-limit places, such as the dog food, cell phone chargers, dustbins and washing baskets!  She also loves to pull herself into standing position against furniture, but doesn't yet know how to get back down, so she just lets go - grey hairs for mommy!

I've spent some time looking up activities for 9 to 12 month old babies, and found lots of ideas.  I decided to put my favourite ideas together into a list for myself, and to print out for the nanny to use for ideas for baby stimulation.

(Obviously all of these need constant adult supervision, and always be mindful of choking hazards.)

Music, Hearing and Movement:
  • Sing lots of nursery rhymes, especially with actions such as clapping hands, stomping feet, nodding head etc.  Or make up your own silly songs!
  • Play music, any music, and dance with baby, so she can feel the rhythm
  • Show baby how you knock on a door, say "Listen! Do you hear knock-knock-knock?" Do the same with different sounds, splashing water, tapping, bells, etc.
  • Bang on drums, bang on pots
  • Put baby on a blanket and drag the blanket, taking her on a ride!

People, Body Awareness, Object Permanence, Toys
  • Play peek-a-boo - use a cloth over baby, over yourself, over baby's toys
  • Stand in front of a mirror, talk about what you're looking at. "Look at this baby! Look, it's you! Look, here's your nose, your ears, your hair, your feet!" 
  • Page through picture books. Point out people's face expressions
  • Copy-cat games: point to your own nose, say this is mommy's nose, point to baby's nose, say this is baby's nose. Ask baby to point out mommy's nose and baby's nose.
  • Hand-over-hand games. Show baby how to put her hand on top of your hand, with your next hand over her hand. Will take a while for her to grasp the concept, but repeat often.
  • When baby drops a toy, lower her to the ground and let her pick it up herself
  • Use double-sided tape and make toys stick to a surface, show baby how to pull the toy off and stick it again
  • Show toddler a toy, and hide it behind you, getting her to look for it
  • Stacking blocks and cups
  • Sorting colours and shapes
  • Cut a slit in a tin and show baby how to "post" Purity jar lids

Outdoors and Physical Exercise:
  • Go for walks, point out trees, flowers, birds, leaves, grass, sand
  • Blow bubbles
  • Bury plastic animals in a bowl of sand, or floating in water, and let baby find animals
  • Have a tea party!
  • Crawl and chase each other!
  • Create a little obstacle course for baby. Use pillows, make tunnels with blankets and chairs.
  • Use an exercise ball - let baby bounce on it, lie on tummy, lie on back, move backwards and forwards. Very good for strengthening baby's core muscles!
  • Play ball games, gently rolling and getting baby to roll it back
  • Toss bean bags

Tactile and Sensory:
  • When outside, let baby feel grass, tree bark, sand, water. Always explain what it is and how it feels. "Tree bark, feel how rough it is. A green leaf, feel how soft it is."
  • Use shaving foam on a tray or a mirror
  • Let baby unpack Tupperware cupboard
  • Tickle with feather duster
  • Let baby play with cellophane
  • Create little goody baskets or boxes for baby to unpack. Put similar things together: create a box of wooden goodies, a box of plastic goodies, a box of noisy goodies!

Messy Play ideas:
  • Finger painting with homemade edible fingerpaint (Will do a post on this soon, we did this last weekend, so much fun for both Ella and Mia!)
  • Jelly
  • Custard
  • Cooked spaghetti
  • Dry cereals
  • Shredded paper
  • Smash (instant mashed potatoes)
  • Water bowls with small containers, cups and utensils
  • Do hand- and footprint art - great keepsakes!

Keeping babies busy in the car:
  • Listen to sing-along nursery rhymes
  • Easy finger foods such as marie-biscuits or biltong sticks
  • A few different bags with a few small objects to explore - best to pass these on one by one than overwhelming baby with everything at once: wooden puzzle pieces, Purity jar lids, pieces of ribbon or material, small toys and rattles, big hairclips.

These are three of my favourite blogs for some creative ideas: Kids Activities Blog, The Imagination Tree and Happy Hooligans.
Please share what your babies love to do?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Ella's Baptism ♥

We did Ella's baptism on Sunday the 1st of March, in Bethlehem at the inlaws NG church - same as Mia.

It was such a beautiful, special day.  My folks and sister came all the way to be there with us, and lots of the Free State family was there too, including both of Mia and Ella's great-grandmothers.

Ella looked totally angelic in her special baptism dress, and she was so good during the ceremony. I loved that Mia also stood in front with us.

I'll let the photos tell the story!  Precious memories were made! ♥



Really loved the cupcake-cake!
Sister love ♥
Ella had fun opening her prezzies, I loved the gentle way she touched her special bangle!
Thank you gifts for the guests, Mia helped me make them!
Most special paintings that my sister did for Ella's room ♥

I found a beautiful poem online, that I wrote in a special card for Ella, and read it aloud to everybody at the tea party after the ceremony:

"Ek sien die water drup op jou voorkop:
In die naam van die Vader en die Seun en die Heilige Gees.
Ek kyk na die Here op

om by Hom hulp te vra
in hierdie taak wat Hy aan my opdra.

God het Sy water oor jou gegiet
om jou daarmee te se├źn.
Ons as ouers word gebied
om Hom te vrees
en te glo dat Hy altyd by jou sal wees.

Vir ons is jou doop ‘n heilige en sigbare teken
van wat jy in ons lewens beteken.

Nederig staan ons hier voor U,
van alle waardigheid gestroop.
In my keel is daar ‘n knop wat stu,
oor my wange is daar trane wat loop,
in my hart is daar onbeskryflike hoop.

Hoop vir jou, Ella my kind,
dat jy die regte pad sal vind,
want God het jou
aan ons toevertrou."

It was special to show Mia photos from her baptism day, for her to know that we also had such a special day for her too.  Here's the link to that post:  Mia's Baptism and also her special poem.

This was the invite I designed for Ella's baptism: 

And I made a personalised thank you message afterwards and sent it to each family:

Such a special time in Ella's life! ♥