My After Giving Birth vs Kate Middleton’s

Kate Middleton discharged from the hospital seven hours after giving birth to her third child.

Kate Middleton came out from the hospital with her third baby looking as radaint as ever. Except for that tiny post baby bump, I wouldn’t know she had been pregnant or has given birth for that matter. Her eyes, nose, and skin show no sign of pregnancy. And oh, she was on heels.

This really got me thinking of my own after giving birth experience. Prior,  I’ve shunned any thoughts of it as I don’t want to bring those memories back.  However there is happiness in sharing and knowing others’ experiences. In a previous post I talked about my traumatic breastfeeding experience  which I’d deeply appreciate if you check it out. But before that please read on and see how similar or dissimilar our after giving birth experiences are.

I have got two children and well in both times, after giving birth I felt I have just exercised rigorously nonstop for 8 hours; and oh I also looked horrible. Horrible enough I wanted to hide under the bed cover for weeks.

Let me walk you through it, and tell me if you had a similar one.

1. Extremely exhausted. I have never been that exhausted in my entire life. My body felt bruised and heavy. I just wanted to sleep for a long time.

2. Soreness everywhere. My eyes were, and so was my vagina. Not just sore, it was swollen too! Side to side movement was a pain. Walking was painful. But peeing was the worst!

3. Here’s the worst part, puffed face in the “worsiest” (if such word exist) possible way. I remember I didn’t want to see my face in the mirror or my photo taken. My nose was super big and my eyes were like Yoda’s.

4. Dry, unattractive skin caused by pregnancy triggered melasma. It’s worst around the neck and armpit.

And oh, wearing shoes after was a no-no let alone heeled shoes. I wish! My feet were as big and swollen as an elephant.

I have seen other women among my circle of friends and women in my community  go through quite similar to mine. However I’m wonderin how celebrities and other famous people make giving birth look like a walk in the park.

Was it a walk in the park for you?

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Energy Saving Tips for Your New Home

When moving into a new home, there are many factors that you should be considering which can help save you a significant amount of money. Here are a few energy saving tips that you should be aware of before moving into your new home.

 

Compare Suppliers

Before moving into your new home, you will need to sit down and have a look at the different energy suppliers on the market. Each supplier will have different strengths and weaknesses, so you will need to weigh up what will be best for you and how you can get the most out of your new home. Being able to compare electricity, solar and gas offers will help you make the right decision.

 

Turning Radiators Off

In the winter months especially, it can be easy to forget about how much energy you are using. Whilst it is nice to have a whole home heated and warm, there are simple ways where you can cut down on costs. Having radiators switched on in every room can quickly become a financial burden, so ensuring you restrict your usage, turning them off before sleeping can benefit you in the long run. Visiting websites like warmrooms.co.uk can give you more information on what type of radiators will work best for your new home.

 

Setting Your Thermostat

Keeping a close eye on your thermostat can also help you save money on your energy bills. It is important to have your home at the right temperature depending on the season of the year so make sure that you bear this in mind. To save even more money, try and have your thermostat at the lowest you can throughout the summer months. For every degree above 20 degrees, you could be seeing a 10% increase in your energy bills so taking appropriate action can help you stay in control and aware of costs.

 

Insulation

Another way to help save on your energy bills is by having insulation throughout your home. If you have insulated ceilings, your home will be much warmer, and you will not feel the need to turn on your heating as much. Before moving into your new home, make sure that you do your research and find out if your roof is insulated as it can make a massive difference overall.

 

Energy Efficiency

Another great way to save on your energy bills is by having energy saving lightbulbs throughout your home. There are a wide range of shapes and wattages to suit all your lighting needs. Energy saving lightbulbs can provide up to 80% in energy savings as well as lasting up to 10 years, ensuring you get the best value for money.

Taking simple steps and understanding the ways to help save on your energy bills will benefit you in the long run. Not only will you be able to take control on how you use energy, you will also be benefiting financially. Make sure you take the time to work out which energy supplier is right for you to get the best deals possible.

 

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Watch and Learn

A young Thai kid speaks English like he has been reared in a household of English speaking individuals. But the truth is far from this. This kid’s parents know not a thing about the English language. And yet this kid’s proficiency is certainly way above his peers. So how is this possible?

Some twenty years back, this may seem outrightly impossible. Nowadays however, with the advent of internet, learning any language is just a click away. True enough, this kid as I have found out spends hours watching English cartoons in the internet or cable TV where he learns English vocabulary and imitates the way the characters speak.

 

Some of his favorite cartoons include,

1. Dora the explorer
2. My Little Ponies
3. Barneys
4. Peppa Pig
5. Ben and Holly
6. Octonauts
7. Charlie and Lola
8. Peep and the Big Wide World

Of the four English skills, listening should be the first to be learnt, and the rest speaking, reading, and writing, with continuous supervision, will follow suit smoothly. Watching English cartoons is a fun and great way for toddlers and school-age kids to learn English pronunciation and vocabulary.

Word of caution though, first, children must not be left unmonitored and unsupervised. The internet is both a friend and an enemy, protect your child.  Second,  no matter how helpful it is, if it is done in excess, it is definitely not good. Strike a balance,  engage your child in physical and other extracurricular activities. And also,  not to be forgotten,  child’s play is just as important.

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Traumatic Breastfeeding Experience

One important milestone of parenthood that became so traumatic for us was breastfeeding. Breastfeeding or nursing is the feeding of babies or children with mother’s milk. The health benefits of breastfeeding for both baby and mother are widely known by many. Despite some occasional negative feedback by others, there is no doubt in our minds that it is the best option for babies.

As first-time parents this is as much as we know. Little do we know that nursing is not at all that easy.

Surely it is not easy and we’ve learnt enormously the HARD WAY as we went along the journey of parenthood.

 

Our traumatic experience

Nursing our first born was agonizing especially during the first few weeks. While in the hospital my breasts were extremely hard and painful. Milk wasn’t coming out. My daughter was crying her eyes out of frustration and hunger. It went on like this for 6 days, my nipples were sore and bleeding. We were emotionally distressed, drained, and exhausted. So we decided to sneak in formula milk just to feed our baby.

The weeks that followed my breasts were still too bruised. And because we are firm believers of the benefits of mother’s milk, breast pumping was the best option. Even with this, it was still trial and error before we found the right breast pump. Had I known that it is not that simple I would have checked out best breast pump reviews. This would have saved us the time and money.

In this age of information this kind of dilemma shouldn’t have been a bother. For Mommies-to-be, the internet is inundated with helpful information and tips from experts and experienced mothers to ease problems some mothers are experiencing in their journey as parents.

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Dance Preggy Dance

Dance induces labor and reduces the intensity of labor pains. Videos of pregnant women dancing have been rounding up the internet for sometime. It got my attention just recently because I remember dancing quite similarly just a few days before birthing. I did it not for these reasons (had no idea then) but just for fun. Thinking about it though I could personally say that it indeed does work wonders.

Here it is

Birthing experiences between my two children were totally different. The time it took me to push my first baby out was relatively easier and quicker than my second, and the labor was definitely lesser with the former than the latter.
I haven’t had any idea about birth and breathing neither have I gone to any lamaze lesson for both pregnancies. I didn’t have any idea on baby bathing, delayed cord clamping practice, and other post natal care. Wish I had a sort of Mommy manual. Anyway, the difference however was that I had been a couch potato during my second pregnancy and more physically active – walking, doing household chores, and dancing during my first.

I remember around 5 days or so before the baby was due my colleagues and I were having fun at the office. I love dancing and we thought how funny would I look dancing with my enormous protruding belly. And so my friend played “I’m Coming Out” by Diana Ross, and I ridiculously dance to it.

So here’s me and my silly dance. Please pardon the poor video quality. This was taken in 2009, and cellphone cameras then were not as powerful.

They say pushing a boy out is difficult than pushing a girl out. Though from experience it certainly was. However I do think whether it’s a girl or boy a great chunk of the difficulty or ease for that matter would always boils down to how prepared our body is.

So to all expecting mommas out there keep groovin’ to the tune!

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Family Bonding at Borsang Umbrella Center

Borsang Umbrella Center is a great tourist destination, an awesome place for family to bond, and an inexpensive way to learn umbrella making. Borsang umbrellas are a legend in Borsang, a village in Chiang Mai province in Thailand. The history of Borsang Umbrellas started way back and the improvement and history that these umbrellas are making up until now is by leaps and bounds. It may have started as a ceremonial offering to monks but now hundreds are sold annually to tourists and are used for political, religious, and royal functions.

Umbrellas for tourism

Borsang umbrella center is located at  111/2 M.3 Borsang-Doi Saket Road, Sankambheng, Chiang Mai, Thailand 50130. Coming to Chiang Mai is not complete without dropping by Borsang, the umbrella capital of Thailand. Umbrellas come with variety of sizes, with attractive and vibrant colors, and one of a kind designs. They have got umbrellas for ceremonial purposes, home and office decorations, keychain umbrellas, and also for protection from heat and rain purposes. Borsang also has other wide choices of souvenirs apart from umbrellas all skillfully handcrafted by Chiang Maians. Many says that umbrella making is a signature of Chiang Mai, and so one could never find these kind of umbrellas anywhere else in the country. So these legendary umbrellas are drawing tourists all year round.

Family Bond at umbrella making centers

For kids, buying umbrellas could be pretty exciting, well, for the first two minutes. After they have explored it though the excitement wanes out. And then it becomes a thing in the past.

What’s good about Borsang umbrella making centers is that they allow individuals and family to design their own umbrellas. Now you’re talking!

For an affordable fee family members could sit together and hone out their sketching and painting skills. Now this is truly exciting for kiddos and adults alike. They not only get to buy but also design something that they can truly call their own. Now this may not be the newest craze but it would certainly draw kids attention and would have them engaged for a long time.

It could be a half-day or a whole day activity. There is no time limit. Materials are provided after which you sketch on to the umbrella the design you have in mind, paint it, let it dry under the heat of the sun. And then coat it with water-resistant substance. Voila! Your own masterpiece.

At the end of the day, you and your children would feel accomplished and proud.

This is an auspicious opportunity to teach children,

*the importance of following instructions
*patience as you wait it up to dry
*the value of doing things on their own
*the value of appreciation and love of their own work
*the value of hard work

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Children’s Day: Thailand

Children's Day 2018

Children’s day is an annual international celebration aim to not only celebrate children for who they are but also to bring awareness to children and the whole world of the protection and rights that are duly theirs. Children throughout our history have been subjected to cruelty, forced labor, and violence. And through this celebration governments must do in its power to protect children who are the future of this world.

It is celebrated by almost all countries at a varied calendar dates.  For example, USA celebrates this on the second Sunday of June which was first declared by a pastor by the name of Reverend Dr. Charles Leonard in Massachusetts on 1856.  It then was declared as an official annual holiday by Turkey on 1923 celebrating it every 23rd of April then on. United Kingdom celebrates this on the second Sunday of May, 20th of November for the Philippines, and second Saturday of January for Thailand.

 

Children’s day in Thailand:  Wan Dek (Day Children, direct translation)

 

It is celebrated with so much fun in mind. It is a big celebration for Thailand. Local governments, public and private institutions, and even schools prepare games and surprises for kids. Free food, milk, and goodies are aplenty during this day.

Local governments give kids a free tour and try program.  For example kids are given a guided tour in a government house and are actually allowed to sit at a government official’s desk; Royal Thai Military allows children to explore their aircrafts, and private institutions give free toys, and school supplies. Aside from these,  various activities are prepared for kids watch and learn.

 

Wan Dek 2018 (2561 in Thai Calendar)

Some schools celebrated Wan Dek a day earlier as the occassion fell on a Saturday.  This is how my son and his friends spent their day. Please the short clip we made of the entire event below. Thanks.

And here’s how my daughter celebrated Children’s Day in her school. Enjoy.

 

How did you spend Children’s Day?

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$2 worth of fun:robot rides

To be able to do what you have been dreaming about is an ultimate euphoria. As a kid driving fascinated me, so when my Dad bought me a miniature car I was thrilled beyond measures. Now, my kids are into gundam models. They have got more than enough to fill a large size display cabinet. They have been collecting and assembling these Japanese plastic models for some time now. However, being able to be in an actual gundam and pilot it yourself brings the game to a whole different level.

Fun Planet @Central Festival Hatyai has these fun-size gundam models that children could get on and drive around for a teeny bit shy of $2.

So what are the features?

1. Single-person cockpit. A child could sit comfortably with a seatbelt for safety. For very young kids, a parent is allowed with the child sitting on the lap.
2. Dual joystick control. Joystick controls emulated from gundam models allow full manuever of the gundam movements- forward, backward, turn left and right, 360 degrees turn, and buttons that give off a shooting sound. Look at the video 6USD worth of fun for a better look.
3. Collision avoidance system sensors around. This is a pretty intelligent feature especially that some kids might be too excited to mind whoever is around them. So the gundam stops moving automatically when it senses persons or objects near it.

Is it worth it?

Yes definitely!
My kids had so much fun. My son was ecstatic, it was priceless.
Aside from these, it gives them a rough feel of how it is to be in it, touching the joystick, making it move themselves, something that they only imagine while watching the anime.

Would your kiddos enjoy this ride?

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Happy New Year!

Wishing everyone a prosperous 2018 from my family to yours. 2017 has been a wonderful year for us. It was not perfect that’s for sure. That the imperfections made it wonderful; for only in imperfection you would see perfection. 2017 had been a roller coaster ride but still it was wonderful. Just a few hours from now we will be becoming 2018. We wish that 2018 will be awesome and full of great things.

5 Reasons Children Need Chores

Experts say, chores are good for children academically, emotionally, and professionally.  The house is a size down version of the vast universe awaiting children in their future.  The training they get early on greatly affects their performance, their sociability, their work ethics, and over-all values as grown-ups. And doing household chores no matter how these may seem petty and trivial is apparently a training of immense significance.  This early training will result to not only an individual of excellence but also an individual with  a great feel of others.

They say, success is achieved when children start doing chores during their formative years. During these years children might be busy with outdoor activities, and extracurricular activities as they start schooling, they must still however do household chores for these following benefits.

5 Reasons Children Need Chores

What can chores do to children?

  1. Skilled. The effects of learning to do chores efficiently and effectively resonate as far as being efficient and effective in school, in the workplace, or in whatever endeavor a child will take on in the future. These important like skills instill in children the concept of excellence, management,  resourcefulness, and creativity.
  2. Self-reliant. Being able to complete tasks and contribute to the family give a child a sense of accomplishments consequently boosting confidence and trust in one’s ability to do things and make decisions. And so when a child goes out in the vast world, s/he could stand on her/his on confidently.
  3. Empathy. Doing a task as a contribution and support to the family as part of this community help children develop a feel of others. This character is what makes the world a better place.  Individuals who do not only think of themselves but who are conscientious, kind, affectionate, and passionate of others.
  4. Responsible. Having regular obligations and duties at home develop a sense of responsibility. As part of the family a task is given that s/he alone is responsible of, inability to do so affects not only him/her but the entire family. So accomplishing this task is something that needs to be done otherwise there will be consequences.  These consequences must be made known for the child to realize that there is a purpose why s/he is doing it, and not just because mom or dad said so. For example, keep the kitchen floor dry, “Why do you think it is important to keep the floor dry?” or “What do you think will happen if any of us step on wet floor?”
  5. Disciplined. Learning to do chores in a routine manner teaches children the importance of following rules set.   And in the long run develops a sense of control that is essential later on as they deal with school works, job related experiences, and them as part of a bigger society. Disciplined individuals are what this world needs.

The benefits of doing chores are great and ideal.  It is something parents would want for their children. However the road leading to these is challenging and oftentimes fraught with emotions. Parents out there very well know these challenges.  It is easy said than done, but something that needs to be done nevertheless.

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