Thursday 18 December 2008

Another Holiday

It is day 2 of our local holiday and we're off to a good start. It's an absolutely beautiful and wonderfully cool morning, Talia is sleeping in the breezy outdoors and Ethan is playing water games with about 144,000 toddlers in Jacob Ballas Childrens Garden. It's the most crowded we've ever seen the place but not too much to detract from the fun!

In Vivo

We mosied over to Vivo City after Hort Park and had a real fun day of hamburgers and Pacific Coffee. Ethan needed a nap so we found a couch on the outdoor veranda of Pacific Coffee overlooking the sea and he slept there for an hour while we sipped iced coffees! After that it was water fun in the play area upstairs which Ethan always loves!

Wednesday 17 December 2008

Hort Holiday

Today is our virtual holiday where we stay in Singapore but take leave, go out and have lots of fun. This morning is a visit to Hort Park and daddy and daughter are having a nice rest in the shade...

Saturday 13 December 2008

Baby Love

Ethan's initial bemusement with his new sister seems to be growing into genuine affection and intrest. Last week at his Toddler's Sunday School class when the teacher was explaining the story of how Baby Jesus was born on Christmas Day, Ethan inexplicably took a deep interest in the 'baby' and couldn't let go of it for the rest of the class despite gentle cajoling from teachers, our helper, Mary & myself! It was actually quite sweet to see how gentle he was in carrying the baby and even knew how to hold it in the right position! Here he is with Daddy long after Sunday School was over, still 'clinging to Jesus'!

Friday 28 November 2008

A (Rare) Quiet Night

Talia has started getting a little difficult to settle at nights this last week and we have had to walk and rock her for most of the evening as she goes into intermittent sleep often waking the moment we lay her on the bed! We recall something similar with Ethan sometime in his second month as well but as we were so sleep deprived neither of us has any clear memory of it....

I am now slowly able to 'decode' our little girl's internal logic and I think its probably a case of being overtired in the night after not being able to get a long sleep earlier in the evening. With two kids in the house now, evenings tend to be "all hands on deck" time as Ethan sometimes chucks tantrums in order to get a reprieve from bedtime or Mummy's 100% attention. Unfortunately both kids tend to bounce off each other's crying and Talia ends up getting woken, while Ethan's cries of protest intensify with the additional crying!

So I am enjoying the RARE event tonight when BOTH of them settled peacefully followed by what looks like a good sleep (fingers crossed!) Let's hope this happens more often in the weeks ahead!!

Wednesday 26 November 2008

"Hold Talia!"

We we initially a little concerned about how Ethan would take to his new sister but thank God our little tyke has surprised us by being a very caring and gentle big brother to Talia so far! He often asks to "Hold Talia!" and seems to enjoy the novelty of having someone who is smaller than him around.

He's also surprisingly gentle when he kisses and pats her. Here he is trying to calm his sister with a soothing touch...

It's so heartwarming to see the kids getting along so well (for now!) and enjoying each other's company. Talia's been really blessed to have such a good and caring big brother. We're sure they will grow up to be good mates in the years ahead!

Saturday 22 November 2008

Ethan's 2nd Birthday at Relish

It's a month and half gone past, but Goo Ma did this cute cartoon storyboard of this special day and I still wanted to share it with you!

Airport Architect

We got another set of super cool boys toys from Jared Khoo! More classic wooden stuff which in this case was a mini city with roads, trees, cars and buildings. The pièce de résistance of the whole set is this airport! It has an elevator, check-in counter, parking, and even a luggage belt Ethan was fascinated and it is really wonderful to see him creatively involved when he is playing. I showed him how to operate the lift and here he is planting a tree inside! Daddy and Ethan will have many fun hours with this together. Thank you SK, Erny and Jared!

Thursday 13 November 2008

Four Years and Father of Two

Life has changed so much these past few years! Just four years ago I was still single, and now I am a father of two! Of course, it seems a lot longer than four years... especially when Renata and I recount memories of holidays, time spent together, milestones, and of course children! We often say, "It seems so much longer than four years hasn't it?" So we're very thankful for these years that God has given us the energy to serve Him, start a family of our own, and feel His hand of blessing and assurance upon our lives. What will the next four years hold? Many things I'm sure - Renata and I said to each other that we would live them with an open hand trusting God for whatever faith steps come our way.

Family Portrait

Yes, it's our first family portrait! Taken at Talia's moon yuet with Ethan dressed up to receive as much attention as possible since he now has to compete with his younger sister. He is a good Gor Gor though - look at him blessing his new sibling!

The Laughing Bumble Bee

This was taken at Talia's Moon Yuet - her one month celebration party. We haven't sorted out all the pictures yet but here is one of big brother who was such a good boy that day. After a swim we dressed him up in his Bumble Bee outfit from Goo Ma who took this picture of him having a good chortle!

Thursday 6 November 2008

Scaling Heights

Ethan climbed this ladder in the playground all by himself today! It took a few times of coaching with demos and encouragement from Daddy but he did it by himself a few times after that. He's a fast learner - just very cautious!

Wednesday 5 November 2008

Sibling Success!

Our efforts and planning seem to be bearing some fruit!  The two siblings get on quite well together so far.  Ethan asks permission to play with Talia’s toys (she’s been getting lots), and Talia always says yes!  And every so often during the day it is “hugs” time and Ethan will give Talia a supervised cuddle.

Saturday 1 November 2008

Proud Grandparents

Over these last few weeks, we've been very blessed to have the love and support of our parents who have brought nutritious and yummy food for us each week..... ......taken time to have fun with Ethan and help keep the kids entertained.......
......showered their love and attention on the little ones.......
......and been there to share our joy as we discover new things about and grow with Ethan & Talia each day! It's been great to see Ethan and Talia (soon) grow to love their Grandparents and share many happy memories with them -- its a very special blessing that we are sure they will treasure for the years to come.

Sunday 26 October 2008

Daddy's Lap

She fell asleep while I was burping her and did so in this cutest pose! Talia has this super-contented expression after a milk feed.

Saturday 25 October 2008

Peace on Earth

I took this photo on our 3rd day in the hospital after Talia's morning feed when I noticed her peering out of her cot with her cute little eyes. Peaceful and contented and quietly curious about this strange world that she's suddenly found herself in......
It's heart-warming to watch babies fall asleep in happy contentment after a milk-induced high! Talia has been giving us lots of sleep smiles after a good feed but they are too fleeting to capture on camera!

Thursday 23 October 2008

Boys at Ballas

The boys went to Jacob Ballas Childrens Garden again today. Ethan got some much needed exercise cos he likes eating so much. We don't want him getting tubby so it's the good ol' outdoors for our boy!

What was Ethan grinning so widely about? He's activating the lights on these cool "flowers" by turning the crank! Jacob Ballas Children's Garden is really cool...

Tuesday 21 October 2008

My Turn

Ethan's waiting for his turn with the new toy! We trying to teach him to say "Please Talia" and "Thank you Talia!" for sharing her toy with him.

Baby Gym

Her first go at her own baby gymnasium! We're getting ready for a trip to the doctor to check Talia's jaundice level. At the same time, Ethan will get a pneumococchal vaccination to protect him for the nursery 1 kindergarten that will start next year in January.

Saturday 18 October 2008

Feeling Better

Her jaundice levels have come down but she still needs more phototherapy before she can come home with us. You can see here how her skin looks a much nicer pink except around her eyes which is still yellow cos she wears eye covers during phototherapy. So it is back to nasty blue lights for Talia and poor girl is crying now in protest as compared to her happy state just a few minutes earlier in this photo when she was just federal by Mummy and lovingly burped on Daddy's shoulder.

In comparison, Ethan had a fantastic day swimming and snacking with Grandpa, Grandma, uncles, aunties and cousins! Not a bad exchange for having to wake up this morning to disappearing parents and asking, "Where babeee?"

Double Phototherapy

Talia is getting phototherapy from both above and below, so while other babies get padding in their cots our princess has to be content with hard unforgiving transparent plastic for a mattress. Poor sweetie...hopefully she will get discharged tomorrow.

Hospital Again

Poor Talia has high jaundice levels and has to be admitted for a couple of days so we're scrambling to make arrangements.

Jaundice Check

Talia has to get her jaundice levels checked. She has been borderline high so we woke up very early today. Here she is freshly bathed and ready to go at 7.30am!

Car Seat

Talia is so tiny that we have to use all sorts of padding to make the car seat fit better. It really reminds us of those first few weeks with Ethan. She is has eyebrow furrows here because this is her first time in the outdoor sun and it's quite bright!

Friday 17 October 2008

Tiny Memories

It has been only 2 years since Ethan was born but we've already forgotten how small newborn babies are until you actually hold one again. Even then you normally hold them swaddled but getting Talia dressed and bathed is another matter. What a precious time!

Thursday 16 October 2008

Officially Singaporean

She is registered and coming home with us today! Soon she will need a passport to travel with us to exciting places...

Cutie Pie

My daughter has the most darling little mouth! She also has big grey eyes but she's sleeping almost all the time so you hardly get to view them. Double eyelids are also there which is 4 for 4 in the family! But her eyelashes are not as long as Ethan's and Daddy's - the boys in this family have the long eyelashes!

Wednesday 15 October 2008

Family Photo

Poor Ethan has to be out of this photo so it's not "complete" without him! He was quite sad yesterday having to leave his mummy in the hospital, so this evening he stayed at home.

Tuesday 14 October 2008

In Our Arms

Here is our little girl in Mummy's arms, but today Daddy got to hold her for a long time and we snuggled up and had a quick nap together. Very lovely and precious!

Full View

Like many newborn babies, Talia tends to fall asleep during feeding times so we have opened up her blanket so she's not so warm and comfortable that she falls asleep. You can see her slim legs here which are skinnier that Ethan's when he was born!

Monday 13 October 2008

First Day

Here are a couple more close-ups of our now 1 day old baby daughter.

Gadgets vs. Girls

Ethan took to Talia quite well all things considering, even patting her a little with our prompting! However he did think she was a bit over rated. His new toy was much more interesting! Conclusion: gadgets beats girls - hands down.

Special Day

It's not every day that you get to meet your sister for the first time so today is a very special day. Ethan was very well behaved though he missed Mummy so we are now at West Coast Park for a treat before going to see Mummy and Talia in the hospital. Talia is also looking forward to meet her brother. She has already packed a special present for Ethan in our bag today!

Sunday 12 October 2008

Love, Daddy

Dear Talia,

You didn't realize it at the time, but today your Daddy held you for the first time ever. You were so small but you looked at me with your big eyes. I heard them whisper, "I need you Daddy..." so I want you to know that I will be here.

You were cold today after your first bath and because the aircon was freezing! So while you laid down under the warm lamp Daddy warmed his hands in hot water and held your cold feet and hands! Soon you were toasty, and I wrapped you up tight so you would feel safe. You fell fast asleep on me after that. You must know this because one day you may feel you're too big to hold my hand or cuddle up close anymore.

Mummy loves you and cares for you so very much and so very well! Daddy's love looks different but is just as strong and big for you. As I held you today I felt that love growing stronger and stronger. Love in practise is like that. Add up Mummy's love and Daddy's love and multiply it by a gazillion and that is an idea of our Heavenly Father's love for you sweetie. I will love you and show you more as we go along. It's just your first day, but there are many wonderful things like this I want you to experience. Are you ready?

Love, Daddy.


Thanks for the prayers and love you have shown. Renata and Talia are resting well. Ethan will see his baby sister tomorrow for the first time! Visits in the hospital for family only please. Thank you!

Talia's Born!

2.525kg and 51cm long at 5.11pm - healthy and already latched on and feeding well!

Warm Bed

Our little girl's bed is being pre-warmed for her welcome into the world. Renata is now 9cm so that will be very soon!


The spikes on the right are Renata's contractions We can see them getting stronger (amplitude), longer and more frequent. The urge to "push" is increasing along with the pain and our gynaecologist is on the way! Renata is 6-7cm dilated so looks like Talia will be here before dinner!

Water Burst

Last time when the water broke it was really messy and lots of laundry had to be changed. This time one of the doctors came in to gently break the water bag so it was all done very neatly. No pictures of that!! We are at 5cm now...

Heavenly Bliss

The epidural is in and it all went well. The doctor said Renata was shallow, not referring to her character but the depth of the spinal cavity from the skin! Various medications and blood pressure checks are going on now... Mummy is all relaxed and ready to snooze. Talia should be here in a few hours!

Daytime Differences

Having a baby in the daytime sure feels different than going in at 3am like we did with Ethan. Last time it was like a secret mission or covert operation cos it was all dark and hardly anyone was around. Now it is bustling and Renata even gets served lunch! (wonder if they will charge us extra for the lunch?) Not being sleepy is good too cos Daddy is awake this time!

Easy Does It

This giving birth stuff looks easy... At least Renata makes it look easy! See how relaxed she is, settling in for a lunchtime nap. She scrunches her face a little when the contractions come... Ivan would probably be squealing like a little girl if it was him.

Talia's Heartbeat

She sounds strong and well! The first doctor is checking her out. Talia's head is low but it's still early hours...

Brotherly Love

Ethan is giving his last hug to Talia while she is inside. Next time his mummy will be in the arms of another baby. Renata is having contractions at 10 min intervals so we're off to the hospital now! Pray for us!