May 28, 2012

skip*hop diaper bag ... ♥!

When we had Adrianna, hubby converted a laptop/messenger bag he used during his university days into a diaper bag for me. As much as I appreciated his effort, the converted diaper bag was gigantic and monsterously heavy. I particularly hated the long flap I had to flip back just to get to the inside of the bag and because it had a zippered front, if I put anything in the front pocket it'd usually hit me in the face first. I also remembered lugging it around the airports on our 5 week US trip and my shoulder was so sore, I gave up and threw all of Adrianna's necessacities into my handbag instead. Even my mother-in-law didn't like the giant diaper bag and chose to use her own bag instead, much to hubby's frustration. Maybe if he had to use it as often as we did and take care of a baby at the same time, he'd understand our reluctance.

So, this time with my little baby boy ... I'm going to buy a proper diaper bag and it's going to be Skip*Hop's Duo Diaper Bag retailing at USD $58 (RM230 - RM260 here in Malaysia, depending which shop you purchase it from). I'm sure there are other awesome diaper bags out there but I narrowed my choice down to this one because of the price and the fuctionality of it fits my daily baby lifestyle and it's go pretty well with our giant-of-a-stroller the Graco (Yes. It's not a pattern. Hubby likes to buy gigantic baby things. You ain't see our baby car seat yet!) With all it's pretty patterns, mother-in-law might actually even enjoy use it!

I haven't decided on which pattern I'll get but it'll either be Blossom (pictured below) or Uptown Stripes. I might even contemplate Wave Multi too. Here's the run down on the diaper bag:
The Skip Hop Duo's multitude of pockets and compartments easily organize diapers, bottles, sippy cups, food and toys, while keeping your phone, camera, wallet, keys and other personal items safe and dry. The Duo features our patented Shuttle Clips, allowing it to quickly and easily convert from a shoulder to a stroller bag. When attached to the stroller, you can leave the shoulder strap attached or remove it for a cleaner look. The Duo has eleven pockets in total, magnetic closures ( this feature!) throughout and a comfy shoulder pad. A long time favorite of new moms and dads – the Duo is a must-have classic!
  • Hangs neatly on a stroller & can be worn over the shoulder.
  • Patented Shuttle Clips make the Duo the ultimate stroller bag; either leave the shoulder strap attached or remove it for a cleaner look.
  • Strong magnetic closures throughout.
  • Extraordinarily durable poly-canvas construction - this bag will last for years.
  • Cushioned changing pad.
  • Side pocket for bottle or sippy cup.
  • Shoulder strap includes soft, removable shoulder pad.
  • Eleven pockets in total, including a zippered personal pocket.
  • Convenient cell phone pocket & easy-access pen holders.
  • Contrasting lining makes it easy to find everything inside.
  • Dimensions (inches): 13" wide x 13.75" high x 4.25" deep

May 22, 2012

cloth diapering; ♥ it or hate it.

Cloth diapering; you either it or absolutely hate it.

After 2 years of disposable diapers (which have cost us little over RM5k … in 24 months!!), I’m quite ready to give cloth diapers a try especially since gone are the days of the “kain lampins” or as I like to call ‘em the Jurassic flats which are much more suitable as herb bags for soups than on a baby’s bum.

After much research, reading and going Aww! over some potential cloth diapers online that may end up on the too-shies of both my kids, I think I’ll give cloth diapering a go.  I can go on and on about the pros of cloth diapering or CD (I’ll call it CD now because I’m getting a tad lazy to type (I’d blame it on my pregnancy hormones but then I really am just lazy)), but for me personally it boils down to just two things:

 Cloth Diapers are cheaper than Disposable Diapers.
… and they really are. More so if you’re using the same piece for more than one little one like I plan to with both my little ones. So the start-up cost of purchasing the CDs is quite mind boggling – I’m estimating to spend a little over RM600 in the next few months on CDs, pre-folds and inserts but that’s where it’ll taper off (unless of course you get absolutely addicted to the cute designs on your baby bums and go out and get some more CDs!). RM600 is only going to last both my little ones about 3 months on disposables - have you checked the latest price on MamyPoko diapers?! Good grief!

Sure you can argue that I haven’t factored in the extra loads of laundry, extra use of electricity and not to mention a much much closer proximity to baby poopies but you might be pleasantly surprised that these costs (and the poopy proximity) are quite infinitesimal compared to the cost of disposable diapers over a period of time, let's say 2 years like what I went through - RM5k plus!

 Utterly cute baby too-shies.
I have gone through quite a few CD review sites and by a few I mean about 15 websites or more and stalked about a dozen online CD stores and two brands have come up tops; { Thirsties } and { Fuzzi Bunz }. They’ve come up tops in ease-of-use (for Daddy and Gramps), absorbability, drying time, built and design. I can’t rate it based on affordability because when it comes to Adrianna's bum as she’s been known to break out in horrid diaper rash that lasts weeks if I use anything that’s a trade-off and I think both Gramps and Daddy will agree on only the best for both the little ones.

Most review sites I’ve gone through recommended using Thirsties’ Duo Wrap Covers (in either Aplix or Snaps) with their super absorbent pre-folds for newborns and/or the Thirsties' Duo Diapers with hemp inserts because Asian babies tend to be smaller than Caucasian babies then upgrade to Fuzzi Bunz’s One Size Elite Pocket Diapers with micro terry and hemp inserts when the baby fat and chubbiness sets in.

After much digging online and quite a bit of frustration because the brands I was hoping to try aren't found in Malaysia, I decided to go with the GroVia Hybrid Shells and their easy snap-on inserts from Tiny Tapir. That and because Kak Li was a gem and super accomodating to my barrages of questions.

Here's what I've added to my cart at Tiny Tapir. They're going to be on trial when my lil' man is about 3 months, which should give me enough time for his runny poppy to taper off to a bearable consistensy (since I'm going to attempt full-on breastfeeding this time round) and to review and if I should attempt my purchase of my Thirsties and FuzziBunz from US. Although these shells do come in the snap version, I decided to try the applix as the package only came in applix.

Experience GroVia Package @ RM229 which consists of:
GroVia Hybrid Shell Hook & Look Closure Diaper in Blackberry
GroVia Hybrid Shell Hook & Look Closure Diaper in Kiwi
GroVia Organic Cotton Snap-In Soaker  (2 plus 2 pieces)

And add-on:
GroVia Organic Cotton Booster @ RM35
Gro Via Magic Stick @ RM60
Gro Via Tiny Bubbles Detergent @ RM59.90

The grand total for this trial set is at RM383.90. I'll probably add more my stash as I go along. Hubby on the other hand hasn't quite jumped on the CD bandwagon yet. His concept of CD is still in the dark ages. Hopefully when I get around to implementing it with my lil' man, he'll come around too (and willingly buy me the other cute designs I've saved in on my Wish List at Thirsties' and Fuzzi Bunz).

May 21, 2012

week 23!

When I first found out I was pregnant and was suffering through the first trimester symptoms, I wished the second trimester would come faster and provide me some reprive. Who knew I had survive the last couple of months without much of a hassle and I'm now happily 23 weeks! It'll only be 17 weeks or less to go before I get to meet my little baby boy!

Oddly enough, I haven't gone bonkers (not the least bit!) shopping for this little one. I'm still as calm as a clam ... I must have caught the "last minute" syndrome from hubby much to my mother-in-law's annoyance because previously by this time with lil' Ee, I'd have bought half a room of baby things whether I needed them or not. Other than three cute little rompers (including one "World's Cutest Little Brother tee which I absolutely could not resist getting) we got on sale at FOS, that's pretty much what we've bought. Told you; calm as a clam, right?

I guess it's because we don't have a lot of things we need to purchase as we already have most of what we need. Other than newborn bottles and a sterilizer (and we might be venturing into cloth diapering aka CD this time but more on that later as I'm still reading and stalking other CD moms), we're pretty much set.

17 weeks more! Can't wait to meet my little new man ...

May 18, 2012

sprucing up blogger with an image title

I the new blogger templates and how easy they are to use, but there are times when I wished the templates on offer had a little more oomph! here and there; like a cute image to the title. So, I decided to Google how to and found a nifty little website with the simplest of instructions at Blogger Tricks.

All you need to do is: 
# Create a 40 x 40 pixel image preferably in .png format and transparent if your background isn't white.
# Upload it to Picasa and get the direct link to the image.
# Follow the instructions provided at Blogger Tricks, save your template and you're done!

{ Note : If you are not very computer savvy and find codes to be an alien languague, be sure to save your template first. You can always revert back to how things were if something somehow went wrong. }

I'm totally -ing my little blue bird now and I hope you're having fun adding some spice to your blog!

May 7, 2012

spending a week in kl!

Incriminating photo of the little munchkin enjoying a whole tube of Pringles. Her gramps will not be very happy so this mama have been getting her to drink more water to compensate her sour cream and onion breath.