Friday, March 30, 2007

tartelle framboise

Halfway through enjoying this favourite indulgence of mine (well one of my favourites anyway..), I thought to myself - this is so good that it needs to be documented!

The fresh raspberries, yummy custard and incredible pastry (with a cup of coffee of course) adds up to be the most perfect combination. What makes it even more special is that the pastry smells of Nestum, which is something so close to my heart! (I just love Nestum and I can't wait for Imran to be ready for it so I can share it with him..)

Our flat is just a few doors away from one of the best patisseries in town - and as a result, I have not been very good with my plan to get back to shape. Everytime I pass by the shop, I have to refrain myself from buying all the yummy french pastries - almond croissant, cafe eclair, strawberry baignet, pain au chocolat... the list goes on. And my mouth waters just by typing them down!

I just don't understand how is it that the French - girls and guys, keep their figures so slim. Hmm.. may be these things are not fattening afterall. OK, I'm make-believing!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

on parenting

Although Imran is now feeding every 4-hours and has a routine throughout the day, he is still (most of the time) not able to put himself to sleep. How can I expect him to, if all this while, I either breastfeed or rock him to sleep?

Envious of friends (other partners of INSEAD students with babies) who manage to just put their babies down to self-settle, I tried to train Imran to sleep on his own using the 'cry it out' method. I don't know how people do it, but it wasn't even 10 minutes of listening and leaving him to cry, that I found myself crying so emotionally before picking him up and promising him not to do it ever again!
I keep asking myself, why is it that (unlike the other babies), he is so dependant on the rocking and the swinging, the lullabies, the patting - and realised that a lot of it is cultural.

In our culture, babies are hardly left alone. From the day they are born, they are constantly in the arms of people, of grandparents soothing them with movements that put them to sleep. The minute they cry, you as first time parents are led by more experienced people to believe that the baby is hungry, and to put him on the breast. How else would you expect him not to be addicted to the oh-so-comforting 'thing'?

Is the western way of putting a baby on a routine from the day they are born - selfish, practical or logical?

I say logical.

Afterall the grandparents are not here to pick them up at 4 am in the morning, and spend an hour rocking them to sleep, are they?

Needless to say, of course the close contact practised by our culture is good to enhance the bonding between parents and baby. But, bonding with well-rested parents, rather than grumpy ones, sure is healthier!

Now, how do I teach him to self-settle? Any ideas?

Friday, March 16, 2007

tagged by nina

As I have just managed to read other blogs by friends, I realised that I was tagged by Nina - quite a while ago, but I guess better late than never! So here goes:

6 weird things about me:

1. I despise plastic bags - I can't bear the sight of them lying around the house (especially those black ones you get when you buy fake dvds) I guess it just makes the house looks 'unsorted'. I much prefer paper bags (in fact I never throw these, I keep them as if I collect them..)

2. With any documents or graphic material, I am completely anal with the font and its size, spacing, justification, colour etc.

3. At the end of every day, I indulge in a dessert (it can be coffee eclair, chocolates, ice-cream, tarts or anything yummy and sinful, usually with a cup of coffee) just before going to bed. And what's weird is this 'ritual' takes place AFTER shower and brushing teeth.

4. When I go shopping, the minute I arrive at the shopping place, I will need the toilet (for a No.2!) My sister's theory is that shopping excites me so much, that something happens in my body system... and I think she might be right!

5. I look at things in picture frames. So I am always fiddling with objects in front of my eyes to compose them in a certain manner. I don't like things to be too symetrical or in a line, as if it's staged, so I am always offsetting things to make it more casual and homely.

6. I wash my hair just before going to bed. I love sleeping with my hair wet, it de-stresses me! Oh, and I also NEVER comb my hair. I don't ever remember owning a comb!

Thursday, March 15, 2007


We had our first holiday with Imran in Barcelona. Dino had a football tournament with other business schools, so it was perfect as I have always wanted to visit the city. Although I knew I would like Barcelona, I didn't realise I was going to love it - I think I could live there!
Layers of art and architecture of the different eras make it such an exciting place to be in! The intimate scale of the medieval Barri Gothic felt just like Venice. The 'modernista' heritage namely the Gaudi buildings (such as this one in the photo) and Picasso artworks create such a mystery behind these extra-ordinary characters. The contemporary designs seen in their countless tapas bars and restaurants, hotels, hair salons, urban parks, furniture and light fittings gave such a breath of fresh air.
I was amazed that the siesta system is still very much intact. They don't have dinners before 10 pm! It was rather strange to see groups of old men coming into restaurants at 11 pm and looking so fresh, as if the night had just started.
The weather was beautiful too - it was great not having to wear winter jackets for 4 days! I couldn't believe that people were already on the beach on Sunday - it was such a great atmosphere.
In short, I found the Barcelonins quite inspiring - their appreciation for the arts, their rich economy (compared to the rest of Spain) and the best part of all - they really know how to live life!
Imran behaved well during the trip. Thanks to his new routine (yes, it did work!), it was so much easier to plan the days with his feeds and naps at certain times. It was also such a relief that he could be in his stroller (most of the time anyway..) so his Mama and Papa could do some sightseeing and have some nice and quiet meals!

Monday, March 05, 2007

new routine?

This refers to Imran's routine. I guess those of us who have babies (and not working!) will understand that your life pretty much revolves around your baby's routine. Well in my case, this is almost non-existant. He does sleep between 7 to 7, but wakes up about 3 times in the night, which is really a bit much for a 4 month old. He doesn't nap well either, which makes it quite difficult throughout the day as well.

When he was first born, I tried to put him on a routine from a book which worked wonders for a trusted friend and apparently many of her other friends. Unfortunately, I gave up very soon after reading from other sources that demand feeding is the only way to go, and to never watch the clock when feeding, but only watch your baby. So I fed him whenever he cried, and now am starting to worry that it is becoming completely unhealthy - both for me and also for him. He will always need the breasts to put himself to sleep!

Determined to face reality, I read that he should be feeding 4-hourly (he SNACKS about 2-hourly!) So, I decided to be brave and fix his routine. On our second day now, and so far the feeds have been every 4 hours, but his sleeps have gone hay-wire.

To be honest, I am not too confident if it'll be a success, but will keep trying as much as I can!