Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Fighting the Summer Heat

Fighting the Summer Heat

One thing I hate about summer is of course pretty obvious – it’s the scorching heat. I remember when I was a kid, I would go home with my nose bleeding profusely. You could even see traces of my nosebleed from my neighbour’s house to mine; one would think a mass murderer had tried to escape. This is why I could not leave the house without a white towel and a bottle of water.

I love the freedom and the beach, but summer + Pibi = nosebleed; it’s something inevitable. And I hate summer for that.

Now that we have Baby Charley, my roommate (my husband, btw) and I make sure that Baby Charley could enjoy summer without any blood fest either from her or me. 

  1. (Sometimes) We let her go on her birthday suit. Baby Charley hates the heat, and we hate it when she cries because of it. One of the immediate, and I could say, effective solutions we have is to let her wear her birthday suit – sometimes. We joke that she’s part of this SLH in Batangas – Samahang Laging Hubad – because she always wants to strip naked…a habit we’re trying to control since she is a girl after all.

  1. Often, we would dress her in loose cotton sandos or spaghetti. On the days that she doesn’t fight against being a civilised human being and wearing something on, we would let her wear loose, usually white, cotton sandos or spaghetti, so that should she decide to go on her birthday suit, she could remove the sandos herself.

  1. We make sure she gets enough fluids. Adults have very high demand for ice-cold water or coke or beer during summer to quench our thirst. We reckon that babies do need the same thing, too (not the beer of course). That is why we make sure that Baby Charley gets enough milk either from me or from Nan HW One this summer. Seriously, the last thing we need is a dehydrated baby.

  1. We give her at least two (2) baths everyday. Summer is annoying not only because of the heat, but also because it makes you smell bad…and this true for babies as well. To survive the heat and the smell, Baby Charley receives at least two baths everyday (one in the morning and one in the afternoon before her 6pm habit), which is something she enjoys. Sometimes, when she’s tired from all her gala, she would just get a wash-up or punas in the afternoon. Thank God for Mustela Physiobebe because it makes her smell good all day.

  1. We always have a wet towel or wipes ready. Baby Charley is already at the stage when she drools a lot – as in a LOT! Because of this, we have wipes or a small wet towel at hand. This summer, the wet towel is very important, too, to make sure Baby Charley doesn’t overheat especially in high noon.

  1. Baby Charley sleeps with the A/C and electric fan on. This is one of her splurges even before she was born. The A/C and the electric fan will be on full blast when she sleeps. Several times we have tried to turn either the A/C or the fan off when she’s already in deep sleep and when we’re almost frozen cold, but she would wake up every time. So, even if it’s a power nap or a slumber at night, the A/C and the fan should be on at the same time. No arguments necessary.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Sugar, Spice, and Dinosaur Eyes

I used to play castles and princes with my two older brothers when I was a kid. Although the level of violence was not clearly discussed, and it really did not matter, I made one thing very clear - my brothers would play the knights or the princes, but I would not always be the princess whom they would (fine!) rescue from some random castle!
Yes, you could wear that pink ballerina hat with
your green monkey onesie
Often, I was the dragon that terrorised the castle! I would stomp my feet and fight with my brothers who used either the Nintendo guns or Leonardo's swords, and no matter how much they tried they could not kill me. Just so you know, I had secret potions that made me immortal. I was the hard-headed dragon who gave a lot of plot twists in the game.
Soon, my brothers grew tired of the game because 1) they were already in College, and I was still in Grade School, and 2) it was boring to have a dragon they couldn't kill.
Yeah, I know being the dragon is not the role girls would first pick in a role-playing game, but I grew up just fine. I grew up in the times when it's okay to be the princess and play with Barbie marrying a Cabbage Patch Kid, but there's also nothing wrong to be the dragon that could kill those stupid ducks in Duck Hunt. 
I remember telling my roommate (my husband, btw) that one of my life goals is to drive a bulldozer. I even had a matchbox bulldozer before. It was neatly placed next to my Polly Pockets and Bulbasaur. 
And this is something I wish Baby Charley to understand. 
Of course, you can have all the shoes you can afford
She should not limit herself to just having girl's stuff and doing just girl things. 
Being a girl does not mean having all things pink and yellow- from notebooks, to pens, to paper towels.
Being a girl does not mean being required to take summer ballet classes or getting the pink kinder joy or the Barbie McDonald's Happy Meal. 
Being a girl does not mean that life would be easy on her, and people would always understand her and her mood swings. Being a girl does not mean being the emotional one in the group or being a damsel in distress all the time.
She can, but it does not hurt if she could change the tires herself from time to time.
Being a girl means she could wear shirts with trains and dinosaurs or skirts with ribbons and stars. She could play soccer and basketball and climb trees and be pirates with her cousins. She could watch the Winx Club and the NBA finals. We could download Call of Duty and if she wants a "Jack and the Pirates in Neverland" birthday party theme instead of Tinkerbell, fine! She could be the big bad wolf when she goes Trick or Treating, or Princess Cinderella, or Olaf. 
and you can have wolverine and the gang
to fight against dengue mosquitoes! 
She could be anything she wants to be…because she is a girl. 
She can be confident and smart and strong just as any boy. She can express her opinions and tell people they’re wrong or apologise when she’s wrong. She can ask a man to drive for her to Katipunan or carry stuff for her. She can shout when she’s angry or punch walls if she wants to so that she could compose herself back and control her emotions again. She can be firm and compassionate at the same time.
More importantly, being a girl means working really hard to reach her dreams without stepping on anyone just to get them. She should be holding her head high for something she’s very proud of while keeping her feet firmly on the ground.
She can be all of these and more…Because. She. Is. A. Girl.
She should understand that girls aren’t just made of sugar, spice, and anything nice. Sometimes, girls are also made with dinosaur eyes.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Why I think my Daughter is Onto World Domination

so not impressed 
People who have first seen my daughter usually remarked that there's something with my child. And after longer contact, many concluded that Baby Charley is indeed up to something. If only they knew...Baby Charley is planning something -- world domination.

Fact # 1: She's friends with the right people. 
I have yet to accept the fact that Baby Charley may not be the world's friendliest baby; as you can see she's not really the "smiley" type in person and in pictures. BUT she's particularly warm with the right type of people.

For example, when I brought her to Assumption San Lo, the school we're eyeing to send her to in the future, she would not smile at people trying to make her laugh. However, she was so friendly with an RA (religious of Assumption nun) who even stepped out of the chapel to play with her.

Not to mention, Baby Charley literally squealed in delight and cuteness to our HR and Benefits Officer, oh you know that person in-charge of our SSS benefits! True enough, my SSS benefit adjustment was ready in no time.

She also made special pa-cute to the teachers of the right subjects (read as: difficult hell-raising subjects) like the Trigonometry teacher, Math Coordinator, Assistant Academic Coordinator, Physics teacher, Science Coordinator, etc. It seems as if she's saying, "Remember this cuteness if ever you're thinking of putting me on SAP."

our 3 day old, Baby Charley -- judging you
And yes, she has also enchanted a high-profile family, who loves to feed us with really good food, and high-calibre Makati Med doctors who give us discounts. Yes, our family's loyalty is sometimes based on food and freebies.

However, in reality, our Princess Watermelon is starting to build her own kinekshuns for world domination. 

Fact # 2: Her ninongs and ninangs are weapons for world domination. 
Well, lemme talk about her ninangs. One is a pink posh princess from Italy -- prolly breaking hearts of men there, the other is a Mormon who will have no bridal entourage on her wedding (if she does get married; last check, yes she will), the other would skip retreat activities with me, and the other is a golden retriever reincarnate.

And her ninongs? They all share one thing in common: heavy drinkers! So, good luck future boyfriend!

Fact # 3: She's very judgmental. 
Have you seen how she looks at people? Have you seen how she criticises your every move? Have you seen how she categorises you based on how much she'll need you in the future? Okay, maybe you haven't, but she DOES!! okay, maybe she doesn't, but that's how many people feel when Baby Charley looks at them.

Yes, #TingingMapanghamak

Yes, she can do the #deathglare

Fact # 4: She knows how to get even...in the cutest way possible.
I have told these stories to my best friend, her ninang who cringes at her "glare".

Recently, this summer, we brought Baby Charley home to Batangas for quick vacation. Her lola, of course, was super excited to show her off to the neighbours. One morning, she brought Charley outside for some sun. However, I was surprised when they returned right away. I later learnt that Charley made another baby girl, who's older than her, cry. She scratched the face of this poor soul who turned out to be the daughter of my room mate's rumoured childhood sweetheart. I was stunned and wished to think it was just an accident.

But it wasn't. I know it wasn't.

Onto World Domination
Also, Baby Charley is quite fond of all of her titos and titas from my room mate's side of the family -- except for one, her Tito Jack. She would talk with all of them, but ignore him and avoid his eyes when he tried to talk to her. This surprised us a bit since this particular tito looks like her Daddy. It was then that we realised (according to her Tito Jack's wifey) that Tito Jack's son, Joaqui, would cry at Baby CHarley's dad for no reason. He seems to be scared of him so my room mate could not carry or play with him.

That's why Charley ignores Joaqui's daddy!! It's something like, "You hate my daddy, I'm gonna hate yours" mentality.


Of course these are just exaggerated analogies of our 3 month old baby. She's not really onto world domination. Seriously, how could she?

She couldn't, right?

Could she?


Sunday, 5 April 2015

My Life According to the Parties I Attend

My life is defined by the types of parties I attend.

Early to mid 20's - This is basically the age when I simply partied for party's sake. Weekends were scheduled to random overnight stays drinking with a couple of friends while trying to finish the thesis and playing counter strike. My roommate's type of party, however, included drinking with his cousins till they pass out.

By mid 20's, we party to celebrate simple milestones in life. A promotion, a successful job interview, and a good day at work.

Gifts were soooo not required, but you're expected to contribute for the booze or for the pulutan.

Here, you can party till the next day because you don't have a baby to worry yet.

Mid 20's to late 20's - The parties we attended were mostly stag or bachelorette's parties. Girlfriends getting engaged and were showing off those huge diamond rings, which could make the guests either 1) gosh! when's my turn? OR 2) ugh! so not getting married yet!

These were usually fun especially for the bride-to-be and for the bride's maids to enjoy the night guilt-free. I dunno about the boys, but we usually give the bride-to-be kinky gifts she would wear on her honeymoon. The closer you are with the bride, the kinkier the gift is.

Or at least that's how it worked with my girlfriends and me.

Late 20's to Early 30's -  By this age, my roommate and I have already invested on a good pair of Barong and Cocktail dresses since we received wedding invitations non-stop. Our friends were getting married either by force or by choice, and we're expected to give a little speech of "work on your marriage not the wedding".

This was also the age when we frequented SM and Rustan's Gift registries for gift ideas for our friends so that they could have that wonder rice cooker they so badly needed. In fact, on our wedding, we received around 3 rice cookers and rice dispensers and a whole lot of sandoks!

Early 30's to Mid 30's - We are already at this stage when the invitations we receive are not just for us anymore. Instead, they're usually "Tito Payat and Family" or "Baby Charley and Parents". By this time, I wish to have a membership to Toy Kingdom or Toys R Us so that I could have discounts with all the toys I'm buying these days!

We're attending either Baby Showers (aaaaawwww...) or First Baby Parties. Just this month, we're invited to 5 birthday parties, and these vary in themes (formal, casual, beach) and locations (one in Quezon City and 4 in Batangas). Hopefully, my roommate would manage to give the right gift to the right celebrant.

Pretty soon, we might be throwing our own party for Baby Charley although as of the moment, we're kinda firm of not throwing an engrade party since seriously, Baby Charley will still be oblivious about any of it. However, that's a topic for another post.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Babies are not made for beaches

Just recently, my family from my husband's side, decided to head to Lobo, Batangas for an overnight swim. It was unplanned, and we were just informed a good 25 minutes before we left for Lobo.

our commute on our way to Batangas
Since I'm more of a planner, this kinda triggered my amygdala for 25 minutes, too.

How many clothes should I bring for Charley? How about water? How about diaper? Mosquito patches? PJ's? And the list went on and on and on and on.

Charley didn't even have a swimsuit yet. Not that it was a problem I learnt later on.

Princess Watermelon
It's quite fortunate that my husband's family has a house there so accommodation was not a problem anymore. So was the transpo going there. We took an Innova, where the mommies and kids are, and our old reliable owner type jeep, where the dads and the yayas are.

beach means sleep
After an almost 1 hour drive, we reached Sitio Danlagan where our house is. The beach is very accessible from the house, so that pretty much excited our rambunctious nephews and nieces. By this, I'm talking about a 6 year old, two 4 year olds, and two 11 month old children...plus our 3 month old Baby Charley. So you can say we almost literally brought the house down.

The following day, 6 children, 4 mommies, 3 daddies, 3 yayas, and 3 titos headed to the beach. Baby Charley didn't wear a swimsuit and she didn't care. She made it clear from the very start that she hated the water. Prolly because it was around just 7 am and the water could be a bit cold. However, right after we dried her and changed her clothes, she went straight to slumberland.

The wind was cold and fresh and it was very good for Baby Charley. Sure, she might be too young to enjoy the water right now, but I'm not worried that she would love it when gets a little older. And when she has an appropriate swimwear already.ΓΌ

The beach just across the street