Parents Build Their Children’s Cliques

We live in a society full of cliques.  It may not necessarily be all ‘Mean Girls‘ and such but eventually your babies will have friends from daycare or even earlier.

But babies can’t start developing cliques at such an early stage, or can they?  Yes, they can.  Because of parents (especially moms) that already choose and select who their babies will have playdates with based on who mommies wants to be friends with or whether the parents fit those mommies’  judgey criterias.  Read the rest of this entry

Love Does Not Equal to Trust

Little Patch is very fortunate to have so many friends and family that loves him so much.  Many would offer to babysit him or want to spend time with him.  However, there’s a set of relatives that have offered to babysit him which I haven’t really given them a (second) chance to.  There’s a lack of trust and I’m not sure if I should  be honest and tell them why and that I would rather have the neighbourhood stray cat watch our baby instead.

I know that these relatives loves LP a lot and spoils him in so many loving ways.  But it seems to them that showing their love also translates to letting LP do whatever he wants.  And that’s where my concern is. If LP wants to play with plugs, even if he’s in their arms, they will let him.  If he wants to push buttons on a DVD player or bash a remote control, they don’t take it away from him or pull him away.  So it’s not just the concern of the chance of LP hurting himself, it’s also having him break stuff around the house and thinks it’s okay.

One loving a child may not necessarily mean that one is also a good caretaker to the child. It’s been a year since the relatives were left alone to watch Little Patch and there’were issues where instructions were not being followed.  It may not be a big deal now on how things should be dealt with a baby, but at a few months old, how much to eat, how often and other details can be crucial.   And when my instructions as a mom are not being followed, I feel disrespected as a mom and as if someone else is trying to raise my child their way.  Okay, this is where hubby would say I’m overreacting…!

Am I being too picky? Or should I just let loose like Patch and just let these relatives have him once in awhile?

Real Estate 101 on HGTV

No way I can afford this type of house in Vancouver.

After watching the HGTV for 13 months, I have learned a lot of things that would help prepare me as a real estate agent.  Not that I would want to be one since I wouldn’t be able to sell a house even if it’s already sold!  HGTV stands for Home and Garden TV but I rarely see any shows relating to Gardening.  The closest would be the new show on the block called ‘Decked Out’.

My favourite shows include Property Virgins, House Hunters and House Hunters International.  It’s actually quite infuriating to see couples complaining about how small a 300 sqft master bedroom is in the 1,500 sqft house that’s asking for $80k. I would be living like a queen in Detroit!   House Hunters International is like a quickie trip to foreign countries.  Read the rest of this entry

Good Buys – Foster Farms Natural Drumsticks (Costco)

Foster Farms Natural Drumsticks from Costco US. No added salt, chemicals or enhancers.

I’m not sure if the BC Costcos carry this yet but sometimes we do our grocery shopping cross-border.  So this would only be a good buy if you are crossing the border for more than just getting drumsticks!

These are sold bulk in packs of 6 mini sealed packs.  There are 5 drumsticks in each.  I like that it’s sealed in packs of 5 sticks so that I don’t have to individually freeze them.  If you look at the price on the package above, it’s less than $9 for 30 sticks.  99 cents per pound.  For natural, non-medicated chicken?  Good buy!

And Here I Am, A Year Later…

… I’m still here, still partly crazy, still loving motherhood but a lot poorer.

Lots of changes and here are some updates and things that I would’ve done differently.

Diapers

I am still using cloth diapers which has its good and bad moments.  Little Patch is producing more pee each time he decides to go which means I have to change him more frequently. I love him but just thinking about his pee stench in a pail/bag waiting to be washed makes me want to gag.  I dislike changing diapers and I find every excuse to get out of doing it when Patch is around.  I’ve used every excuse in the book when I hand LP to him saying ‘Honey, could you change him, I have to go pee/job hunt/upload photos/return a call.‘  Yes, I’ve used job hunt before and it works because if he questions me, he’ll get, ‘Do you want me to work or not?’

That said, I do appreciate how much money we’ve saved by using cloth diapers.  On our one week trip to Hawaii, we used exactly one pack of 35 Seventh Generation disposable diapers.  That would normally cost around $20.  So at around $20 per week, you do the math.   We spent about $350 on cloth to last until he’s 25 lbs and about $200 on disposables.  However, that’s not the same deal as if I got Huggies or Pampers from Costco in the US (which for size 3 is about 17 cents each), I use Seventh Generation which costs about 27 cents each. Still, not bad for the year.  Best if the little bugger is actually potty trained…!

Money Saved But There’s Also Money Unwisely Spent

I can’t practice what I preach.  I tell new moms over and over that it’s not necessary to buy clothing and toys for the first few years.  Little Patch’s been extremely fortunate enough to receive clothing and toys from friends and family on Christmas, birthday, and “just because”.  He has so much that I’ve donated some to a local clothing bank or passed it on to expecting friends.  But guess what, I still spent $10 on a hoodie just because it’s cute and more importantly, I feel that I want him to wear something from mommy.  Does he know or care?  Most likely not. Yeah, I know that’s why I suck in this department.

TV Time

I’m a bit ashamed to admit that around Lil Patch’s 10 month bday, I started using the TV (Treehouse to be exact) to calm, distract or entertain him.  Who knew that 4 middle age men can be cute and comical wearing star trek knock off uniforms (I heart you, Sam Moran)?  And to be honest, sometimes it’s because *I* want to watch it.  His TV times are usually 12:30 – 1:15pm, around his lunch time.  Lunchtime with the TV on? That’s double crime.  However, I’ve managed to turn off TV time during his feeding and I find that he focuses better of eating.  Uh duh.

Healthy Soup – Winter Melon Soup with Pork

A light 'cooling' healthy soup.

Here is a nice, clear soup that is easy to make, cheap, and good for you.  I like making this winter melon soup because a big pot would last my family for a few days.

The main ingredients are pork tenderloin/shank (depends on what you prefer), duck eggs (for saltyness) and winter melon.   Winter melon can help detoxify the body and is normally used in soups, and stews.  Some fancy chinese restaurants serve the soup in the melon (after it’s scooped out) but will require advance notice to order. Read the rest of this entry

The Groundhog is My Neighbour

I have a neighbour.  He’s retired so he has a lot of time.  He doesn’t have hobbies like gardening or enjoy talking to my parents.  He’s East Indian and my parents are old fashion Chinese.  Both my parents and my neighbour are not racist but I guess the older generations don’t really hang out with other races for reasons like language barrier or cultural differences.  But they’re on polite terms.  The reason why I brought up our races is because we asked him once to not use his leaf blowers to blow his leaves over (especially after my dad spent hours raking our yard and keeping the grass area by the sidewalk leaf-free) and he called us racist.  Ok, whatever. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Waiola Shaved Ice – Worth a Trip to Hawaii

This is partially why I keep returning to Honolulu... seriously.

To end my Oahu’s Triple D segment is a trip to Waiola’s Shave Ice.  No, this is not the Waiola Shave Ice that’s constantly advertised on Hawaii Five-0 and not the one with the bakery.

On my previous trip to Honolulu, a local friend introduced me and my hubby to shaved ice.  At first I wasn’t too interested because I imagined it to be like PNE’s snow cone.  Coarse, grainy, rough ice doused in food colouring.

When I arrived, it was part of a corner store.  But there was a line for the shaved ice which is the first good sign. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Uncle’s Fish Market and Grill

I’ve been slacking on the posts recently so I’m hoping to finish up the Triple D segment before the start of the weekend.  We visited the Pier on Sunday and was hoping to have a late lunch at Nico’s.  However, Nico’s was closed and Uncle’s was open.  A local that came to eat with us told us that Uncle’s is where most of the fishermen go eat.

Colourful menu boards with lots of specials to choose from.

That day it wasn’t busy but there were still about 5 tables being served.  Mostly just one or two ppl per table, no other families.  Probably customers that had to work on a Sunday at the docks.

The right page of the menu where it explains the fish and texture was really helpful.

The menu had a good selection of entrees. Many of the items are kid friendly. Big portions as well.

There is also live entertainment on weekends and certain nights.  Their website has a calendar of events.  The only entertainment we had that day was sports on their TVs.  Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Mac 24/7 (Waikiki)

Located inside the Hilton Waikiki Beach Hotel - 2500 Kuhio Avenue. Not quite by the beach but 2 blocks from it.

The restaurant name Mac 24/7 suggests its closing hours which are none unless it snows.  This restaurant is a block from the Aston Banyan located in the Hiltion Waikiki Beach Hotel.  Our friend mentioned that he saw an episode of Man vs. Food where the host did the Pancake challenge at the same restaurant so we decided to give it a try for dinner.  Not the challenge though! Read the rest of this entry