Thursday, February 28, 2008

come see who's entered our lives ...

as promised some time back, here are some photos on the little corners i've created for Baby Z. having seen these photos now, you'll realise that really, it's pretty plain. there wasn't really a specific theme running through the decorating side of it, but if one had to pinpoint to a theme of sorts, i suppose it'll be the colours used. kept it to shades of pink, orange, rust and white. more or less.

:: the nursery corner in the room downstairs (this was taken a while back, crib now has white linen with a burst of colour in the form of the yellow pillowcase i had adorned earlier) ::

:: the changing table, that's really my dresser - this, in our bedroom upstairs ::

:: home-printed origami papers, home-made-and-assembled origami cranes - these hang (rather pathetically .. haha) by the changing table ::

all of this for the lil girl who arrived safely (after a painful 9 hour labour though) at 10:23am, Monday 25th February 2008. her birth weight was 3.07kg and length 49cm. the lil girl who parked herself snugly in me for 9 months plus, who left me rushing to the loo a lot at all hours, who left me forgetting how to walk properly, who made me crave all things spicy (Thai food especially!), plenty of Caesar salad and lots and lots of juice (orange and lime).

but put aside the discomfort and unattractiveness that came with carrying the lil girl, the instant i laid eyes on her, it all made sense. she was worth the wait and all the pain. she's here with us now, and she's the one we've named Zayaan Atiya. both names of Arabic origin, Zayaan means something beautiful and Aitya means gift. 'beauty' is no doubt subjective, but any given child, especially when you carry him/her yourself, is that bit more beautiful, just because. :-) after a considerable age gap between Big Z and Baby Z, having her with us is indeed a 'gift' of sorts. we see it as Allah's special gift to us (well, obviously after his first big gift, Big Z ;-)).

so, that pretty much sums up the 'story' behind us choosing her name.

:: we mostly call her by this name, though i try to use both names too ::

and this, my dear readers, is her. our 'beautiful gift (from Allah)'. :-)

Friday, February 22, 2008

counting the hours now ...

It's happening. Soon enough.

InsyaAllah, by Monday afternoon, I'll officially be mom to 2 kids.

On my checklist now ...

my hospital bag : ready, but need to get me some gossip-y mags
Big Z's and the Daddy's bag for stay at my parents' : ready, but oooh.. better make sure there's enough trains and books for the Big Z
house swept and mopped : done, but may just do another round of it tomorrow morning
Baby Z.A.'s crib and cot : both dressed up ... just needs her to occupy the space now :-)

The plan today is to make sure house is in order (as much of an order as possible, that is) before I actually leave for the hospital. The last thing I need is to come home in 3 days time to a madhouse. Not too good for the stress level, I'd say.

Aside from housekeeping, there's also the plan to eat all I can today before I dutifully enter my confinement period. Confinement period, specifically the diet part of it ... hmm ... that'll be one to watch. Wish me luck! Especially when I know very well what naughty food stuff I've got stored in our 'pantry'. Much discipline would be needed on my part, no doubt. ;-)

Till my next updates ...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

"look at my Island of Sodor, Mummy" ...

:: click on photo for bigger, sharper view ::

How's that for a take on the Island of Sodor? Big Z's drawing of his beloved train characters on their island.

There's Thomas - the number 1 engine, Henry - number 3, Gordon - the longer and bigger number 4 engine, Edward, James, Percy, Diesel 10, Oliver, some trucks and another red engine I can't seem to identify. Oh, there's also Cranky the Crane in the top left hand corner of the picture. Framing the picture is Big Z's version of railway tracks (in blue).

Just to 'pretty up' the picture a bit, he included a rainbow (you can just about see it above Thomas) and some fruit trees (says they're apples, oranges and some flower trees). And that big black scribbly patch - well, says Big Z "that's the stormy weather coming, Mummy". And with that last bit of explanation, he decided to call it a night. That was his last bit of detail in the drawing.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

the home library ...

some of the prefered books here at Big Lime. these would be the popular choice(s) when Big Z volunteers a break of sorts from his Thomas and Friends books.

i find this series, "How Do Dinosaurs ...." by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague has just the right sort of balance as far as kids books are concerned. just the right amount of humour, storyline and moral, matched quite prettily with the illustrations. at the same time, kids are exposed to the different types of dinosaurs - well, and us parents too. so, am thinking i'd grow this collection a bit over the next few months. Big Z has a good laugh and chat about the books after having the book read to him each time. would recommend these, yes.

the first 2 books below are the ones Big Z already has. i now want to get him the last 3 books below.

the other series he picks out from his mini home library would be The Little Red Engine series. he's got 2 books in this series (as shown below). the stories were written by Diana Ross - a children's writer, famous back in the 40s, 50s and 60s. i was thrilled to happen upon the books during our holiday to the UK 2 years back. with a toddler already very much into trains, i thought giving him a classic train storybook would just be peachy. it's quite old-school English the book adopts. his very own starter collection of vintage books. :-) pretty serious tone though for a children's book, i'd say. but i think that was just the style back then. everything seemed a lot more proper, a lot more English, if you like. Big Z doesn't seem to mind. he'll still pick these books out from time to time and will sit through it while i read them to him.

what books are your toddler(s)/child(ren) fond of? be interesting to exchange ideas and suggestions on books for our lil ones. :-)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

38 weeks (with Z.A.) and counting ...

this is Baby Z at 38 weeks. she's still not engaged.

:: check out the a-lil-too-pouty-bordering-grumpiness mouth ::

as for myself, i'm not showing any signs of going into early labour. i wish i was though, as it's really getting a bit too uncomfortable navigating my whole self around the house. sleeping is almost an impossible act too. there just isn't any position that will put me through a good night's sleep without much discomfort. am i complaining a bit here? more than 'a bit', i'd say.

they say each pregnancy is a different experience in itself. it's all true! this really has been a challenging one compared to the first pregnancy. having said that, this one also sees me going through it with a much more active mind and physical self. whereas with the previous pregnancy, all i did was basically lie in bed with books and magazines and dvds whilst entertaining all sorts of culinary cravings, this one sees me walking a lot, driving (i still am at this stage, should i stop by now?), sweeping, mopping, cooking, crafting, tending to the Big Z and everything else in between. they also say, keeping yourself active is good and it may well bring about early labour. hmm ... i should have already given birth then, if that's the case.

the longer i wait, the more restless i become. the more restless i am, the more tidying up and rearranging of all sorts around the house i end up doing. the more tidying up and rearranging i do, the more i realise i hang on to one-too-many things over too-long a period of time. i need to learn to let go of things which clearly have no use anymore, rather than hang on to them and then worry myself senseless on a daily basis on the shortage of storage at home.


here's a lil bit of 'fun' for you. we've confirmed Baby Z's name, her initials are Z.A. for those who feel like guessing the name, please do. include your guesses in your comment. when she FINALLY arrives, i'll announce it right here in this blog. a lil congratulatory token (for guessing the right name) may then be yours. :-)

on that note, happy day to all. oh, and to those who really celebrate it in one way or another (we don't btw), happy valentine's day. here's our card from Big Z - his craft today in school. his card is as far as 'celebrating' on our part.

:: front of card ::

:: inside of card ::

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

staying true to our roots and beliefs ...

it's always encouraging to see your child pick up new (positive) developments. often, when we least expect to get some interest from them, we find ourselves watching with much glee and hope for better things to come.

i'm not your most religious 'modern Muslim young mom' around. i do my prayers, yes. i read the Quran at least once every 2 days, or once a day (when i feel i've a bit more time to spare). i semi-cover myself. i've never seen the need to or fallen into the temptation to indulge in some (alcoholic) drink. but still, in short, i'd say that i've still a long way to becoming as perfect a Muslim person as possible.

as far as teaching and showing my child the simple basic daily relgious practices, again, still a long way to go. i've only gotten as far as teaching Big Z how to recite the 'bismillah', the 'fatihah' and the 'doa before tido'. and i got him a book on the introduction of jawi.

the past week though, Big Z has shown some keen interest in attempting to pray. he'd really get into the whole spirit of it all, though i suspect he gets a lil too excited too early on.

Me : what you doing in there (bathroom)?
Big Z : it's OK, Mummy ... i'm just washing ... just taking my 'smayang air'.
Me : oh ..? don't take too long, don't wet the whole bathroom.
Big Z (comes out from the bathroom) : OK. all done now. see, i take my 'smayang air' already.
Me : OK. you can smayang now then.
Big Z : OK
Big Z (stands in position on the sejadah, pauses then ...) : I think I smayang another day.
Me : what?? why not now?
Big Z : because ... i take my 'smayang air' already. so much! and now, i'm feeling tired and wet all over. so, i think i just smayang another day la.
Me : *speechless*

the scenario above is what happens more often than not! when he's not too lazy, he'll be 'reciting' some bits of Arabic jargon as he goes through the different praying positions. but, to watch this, both the Daddy and I need to be real quiet and just peek from outside. as soon as he catches us watching him, he'll get all shy and stop immediately.

lately too, he's been saying he wants to go to Mekah for a holiday. says he, "Mekah first, and then London to meet Thomas and all the trains there". *LOL*

on that note, i think i'll start him on mengaji class this year. i started reading the Muqadam at age 5 too. think it'll be good to start him this year then - he turns 5 in August. while there's interest from him, i should really encourage it.