29 Sep 2013

Updated Blog Roll

Firstly, you may have noticed I've added some Follow Me options on the right. You can now follow me on other social media platforms and or be updated when there's a new post on the blog. You can follow me via Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. As well as subscribe to updates to this blog via Bloglovin'  

I've now updated my Blog Roll. My additions ...

Daily Reads
  • Caitlin from Mother Down Under. American expat who documents her family life, food recipes and tips on clean living.
  • Karen from Art of Nothing. Those who do know me personally would know my baby sister and her husband recently moved overseas. This blog documents and captures their adventures in the UK and elsewhere they travel to.   
  • Sarah from Bump, Baby C & Me. An expecting mummy to be based in UK. Our pregnancy due dates are closely similar so I love reading what someone else in my shoes is experiencing at the same time.
  • Sonia from Life Love & Hiccups. I love her writing style and overall "tone" of her blog - right mix of personal, product reviews and discussion posts. 
  • Matt from Daddy Down Under. Parenting and life experiences from a humorous stay at home dad's perspective.
  • Neil from Quick Sprout. Business blog of a successful American entrepreneur. Ignore all the ads and pop ups and his business tips are very insightful and useful. I've already gotten so much from the several posts I've clicked on, admittedly I relate more to his older "how to start a business successfully" posts than the newer posts.
  • Oozos. Online store for kids clothing. I love to shop online, its worst now with kids cause I shop more for them than me. They also have a great little blog for fashion inspiration.
  • Ripe Journal. Foodie blog by Roslyn who documents her culinary adventures with honest reviews and beautiful pictures.

27 Sep 2013

Our New Addition

He's here!!

On Sunday, 22nd September at 9:28pm bub number 2 had arrived.

I want to write in detail my birth story cause it's a pretty unique one if I do say so myself. I ended up having an unplanned home birth, yep ... did not make it out the front door and my husband and family delivered him into the world.

Most scariest, amazing, memorable and funniest stories I can ever share ... 

Welcome to our family Malachi Jacob, we are so in love with you already ... especially kuya Eli.

21 Sep 2013

A Year Ago Today

A year ago today Ian and I were at a port in Crete catching a ferry to Santorini. I can't believe that was a year ago today? Who would've thought a year later I'd be 37 weeks pregnant?

I'm still yet to finish documenting in here every adventure we had during our big European holiday. I'll finish it one day ...

In the mean time this is the review I posted on TA of Aliko Suites, our home in Santorini for the four nights we were there. 

Firstly, I can’t rave enough about how much we loved staying at Aliko. Leading up to our European holiday and researching where we wanted to stay in Santorini we knew prices were going to be expensive if we wanted to stay somewhere with a view and our own pool or jacuzzi (those were the room requirements we had in selecting a where to stay). We looked at all the larger hotels and compared reviews on TA and noticed there were some mixed reviews. We didn’t want to spend 300E+ a night and be disappointed. 

We then found a review on Aliko on TA. I loved the fact that it’s not a large chain and that there are only two rooms available therefore intimate and never crowded. 

The booking process was seamless and communication from the host Katerina was exceptional. She coordinated transfers, tours in advance, answered all question we had and asked us questions to make our up coming stay comfortable. 

When we arrived in Santorini our ferry transfer took us straight to the accommodation where Nick greeted us and took our bags down to our suite. We finally met Katerina who showed us our lovely enormous suite, explained facilities of the room, how to use the mobile phone, laptop and left us to unwind. There was fruit and champagne on arrival and straight away we jump in the jacuzzi, some wine and take in the view. A summary of main key points of Aliko:
  • We stayed in the Deluxe Room
  • Amazing location! Perched on the hill side of the Caldera.
  • We did book the smaller suite between the two but its not small by any mean. It was very spacious more like a one bedroom apartment with a kitchenette, lounge area, dining area, desk and powder area too. There’s the amazing balcony, outdoor seating and eating area.
  • Room was equipped with modern fixtures, tv, free internet and wifi which was included with price, however we could not get our mobile devices to connect to the wifi. Room has air conditioning, kitchen stocked with cooking utensils. 
  • Accommodation was walking distance to Fira, about 1.5-2km each way. We didn’t mind the walk for the exercise, photo opportunities, checking out local vendors and restaurants and site seeing.
  • Room was serviced all day. We actually started to feel bad because we’d make a little mess and when we returned it was cleaned for us. Rooms and bathroom were always spotless upon return.
  • The breakfast service every morning was a great way to start the day. Day before Katerina would confirm what we would like to have for breakfast and what time. She would quietly bring the food and leave outside on our balcony table every morning. 
  • Jacuzzi was amazing and could accommodate probably 4-6 people in it. It is heated so you can use it at night, however they suggest not to use the spa feature after 8pm due to the noise. 
  • Lots of places to sit and relax whether inside or outside, you can find a spot to just relax.
  • Kitchen fridge is stocked with food however you do have to pay for items consumed. 
  • Bathroom did not have an exhaust so room would fog up when using the hot water
This property made our stay at Santorini not only luxurious but relaxing and one we will never forget. As much as we wanted to see parts of Santorini we were also very content just staying in our suite taking in the serenity of the view. if we return to Santorini we will definitely be back at Aliko.

18 Sep 2013

37 Weeks

  • I am now considered full term meaning if I start to go into labour anytime from now it would be safe for baby to arrive and I would be able to go home from the hospital a few hours later (given there were no complications). Can't believe we're going to have a new little person in our family soon. Really need to prepare everything else such as install the baby capsule in our car, find my breast pump and bottle steriliser, reinstall bassinet on our pram etc. 
  • Pulled out Eli's old stuff that I kept. They are mostly clothing and boy does he have a lot. I kept only the good quality items that survived Eli's wear and tear and surprised how much stuff I actually kept and in excellent condition. I think because when I first found out I was having a boy it was summer so I purchased a lot of summer clothing. So when he was born I had no winter clothing so the summer stuff never got worn when summer did come around as he out grown them. Plus Eli got so much stuff being the first that that I didn't use it all so again I have all this brand new  stuff too. So I've set up bub's dressing drawer complete with all his tiny clothes ready to go up until end of summer.
  • The cot / crib has been set up again. We decided to put it in our bedroom and surprisingly it fits? I think we could even put a chair in there so I can sit and nurse comfortably in our own bedroom. 
  • Started using the Epi-No. I am a big advocate of the device as I think it helped me not only with the impeding experience but I believe helped with inducing my labour process. Eli was 9 days early and I think this device helped speed up the process and I'm ok with giving birth earlier than my expected due date. 
  • Nervous about the impeding labour. I think I'm more nervous about this labour because the first one went so well. If I could duplicate to a tee my labour with Eli I would be so relaxed but I know each pregnancy is different and knowing my luck I'll have the complete opposite. I think cause of all the minor issues with bub and also little nagging pain my body has been experiencing this time around I'm worried it's not going to be an easy birth. 
  • My body aches especially first thing in the morning. It feels like I've done a worked out the day before. My shoulders, thighs, hips, lower back and stomach feels so sore first thing in the morning. 
  • Uncomfortable trying to sleep at night. The weight of bub forces me to sleep on my side but I can't seem to get comfortable and find myself tossing every several minutes. I also sleep semi seated because of the constant acid reflux it wakes me up sometimes. 
  • Emotions swinging from one extreme to the other. Some days I feel easily annoyed and don't really want to deal with people or make any real important decisions. Then the next day I feel extremely motivated and want to take on everything at the same time - studying, business plan, extra curricular activities for Eli - even this blog seems to have taken some priority. 
  • Emotional in an irritated way, again not like my first pregnancy. Ian use to joke that he feared I would be even more of a "bitch" when I was pregnant but I was totally not and very calm first time around. Don't get me wrong, I'm not running around telling people off, but I think its the fact that I've notice how things easily irritate me lately to the point I'm complaining to Ian about it and sometimes get teary over it. The hormones have definitely taken over.  
  • Change in taste buds. Lately, if I cook a meal I don't feel like eating it once its done. If we opt to get something I don't want anything in particular. When we do decide on a cuisine I keep changing my order and when it arrives I don't feel like I want it anymore.  
  • So my midwife recommended / mentioned a herbal option to assist with preparing the uterus for labour called Raspberry Leaf Tea. You can take it in tea form however may need to take 4-5 cups a day to gain any benefit from it. Or take it in a form of a tablet any may only need to take 1-2 depending on the dosage for each tablet. I was really skeptical when we were discussing it last week as I never used any "herbal" assistance during my last pregnancy and it turned out perfectly, but I've been doing some research educating myself and I've decided to take it.    

We've given up trying to take photos with Eli, he just doesn't want to cooperate and the exercise is more stressful than fun. And when a child's not happy to smile in front of the camera ... well none of your shots look good. So here's some progress shots of me. 

I'm massive!! ... Ok baby is massive!!

16 Sep 2013

Hawaii Photos - Maui

Knowing we were going to be in Hawaii for two weeks we knew we had the time to venture to another island. We (I) decided on Maui because I heard it was beautiful and a bit of a honeymoon spot and since we were on a babymoon ... why not?

Maui is only a 30 minute flight from Honolulu but both our departure and return flights were running three hours late. Never fly with Mesa Go airlines I've since learnt they are notorious for delaying flights, no wonder they were the cheapest.

We stayed at The Westin Kaanapali Resort Villas. I plan to write a post a review of this resort shortly. In the mean time here are a few of my favourite photos of our time in Maui.

Images include resort areas, Kaanapali beach which was right on our door step and the various activities we did during our trip.

14 Sep 2013

Blog Roll

It's been awhile since I've updated my blog roll. There's a few more blog I visit frequently and deserving of being put on my roll.

This is also an opportunity for those who want to be linked up and be put on the roll to contact me on gen.y.mum@gmail.com with your blog or website. 

I'm no blog roll hoar, I am selective about who I add to my roll so I will only add blogs or sites that are a best fit me for me and my audience.

Will be doing a clean up of my roll in a few days. 

13 Sep 2013

My Secret Skill

I can code and read HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language)

This blog isn't my first blog or attempt at a blog.

Actually when I first learnt how to code in HTML I was totally in love with the language. I remember staying up late at night building pages. I won't call what I use to do as websites cause they weren't official sites, but I just loved designing and coding pages.

I challenged my skills and ability by trying to copy designs of pages I liked and tried to figure out how the page was put together just by reading the page's source code. I thought I was the shiznit with HTML and considered about a career in web design.

However, like all programming languages it slowly died and programs like Flash and Dreamweaver (where are there today though??) slowly infiltrated the industry and knowing how to coding wasn't necessarily the skill you needed, but how to create pages using these fancy and complicated website builders.

This is where I got lost. There were so many features and options available in these tools which you think would be great as it cuts down the time to build a page, but I just found it more of a hinderance than be beneficial. Other reasons why I was turned off was the costs associated with buying these applications and back in the day YouTube didn't exist (OMG am I that old?) for free online tutorials, so doing a course or buying a book was really expensive.

So understandably over time my love for building websites slowly died. How could my detailed HTML code compete with fancy flash animation?  

Today online blog applications like this one I use, WordPress, Tumblr etc have also made it easy for everyday, non technical people to create and manage a page to host their blog.

I usually stick to the WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) option. Did you like that? I snuck in another HTML lingo for you. But occasionally I press the HTML option and make some minor changes I feel that fits my blog needs more.

The other day I spent several hours trying to recall my old HTML skills to do something very simple on here. I won't go into the details but I'm so pleased with myself that I achieved what I wanted to do based on my understanding of website design, utilising the file hosting applications available today and breaking down the problem into small chunks to come up with my solution. 

I'm such an IT nerd at heart. 

If only I could still access the files on my old laptop. I kept on offline version of all the pages I built on there ... would love to reminisce and show print screens of my designs and skills. 

10 Sep 2013

Hawaii Photos - Waikiki (First 3 Nights)

Finally putting some of my favourite Hawaii photos together for the blog. 

I mentioned previously I totally missed the fact that we gained an extra day when we travel "back in time" i.e to the States, so instead of thinking we were only in Waikiki for two nights on our first leg it was actually three nights ... not complaining. We managed to stay the extra night at the same hotel we booked the two nights. Location was great, you definitely paid for it but I wouldn't say it's the best place to stay with a toddler. You can read my review of The Royal Hawaiian here.
Here are some of my favourite photos from the first three days in Waikiki.

4 Sep 2013

35 Weeks

  • Completed the rescans suggested at 22 weeks. The sonographer took lots of scans and reviewed area requested by our midwife however when we received the report from the scans it did not have any information on baby's kidney's. Apparently a sonogrpaher completes the scan and a separate person (a doctor) reviews and completes the reports. Our midwife needs to contact the place we got our scan done and get the doctor to contact her to confirm whether there was no information on the kidney because everything's fine or it was missed. So still a waiting game.  
  • Despite not getting the information we needed, we did however get up to date measurements of the little man. Looks like his current measurements are considered in the 90 percentile for average babies. That's great to hear that he is growing considerably well despite his unknown kidney issues. As of last week he's already 2.8kg, Eli weighed 3.01kg when he was born and I still have another 3 weeks until full term ... not looking forward to pushing this chubba babba out. 
  • Each week I'm feeling more and more bigger and more and more uncomfortable. Started feeling some pain again around my belly Monday morning. I'd describe it as the pain experienced when you've eaten something bad but not the 'I need to go to the loo' pain.
  • Leg cramps that wake me up from sleep at night. I don't get them on my calfs but at the mussels at back and side of my legs. I've never had those mussel groups cramp up ever before, its weird and obviously very painful. I think I need to start wearing my compression socks again.
  • My overall gut feeling is I think I'm going to have this baby soon or at least way earlier than my expected due date. Why, just symptoms I'm noticing about my body such the constant lower back pain, my body's need to constantly empty out my bowels - like after every time I put something in my mouth, tiredness and I keep getting that cold shivers feeling despite the warm summer like temperatures Sydney has had the past several days. 
  • Although we didn't get the information we needed from the scans we discussed worst case possible results and scenarios relating to baby's kidney's, what this means and what would be the next steps. Mostly likely because so many variables have resulted in inconsistent results, we will need to get baby's kidney's x-rayed post birth. Worst case scenario is baby's kidney's aren't functioning properly and he'll need an operation, preferred case scenario would be all he needs is some antibiotics to correct his kidney's. 
No photos of Eli and I here's one of the bump and hubby taken from the weekend past, which was Father's Day. 

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