Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Ian at Twelve and Thirteen Months Old!

My one year old pride and joy.

Ian at 12 Months

At 12 months, he is a healthy 10kg. He has a big appetite too and he can eat a full serving of roti bakar kaya on his own. And since his pediatrician gave him the green light to eat anything and everything, he has been sharing his Abang Aiden's meal, such as nasi with sup ayam, telur dadar and even ayam goreng! Ian now also knows how to use a straw. Still spills and such but at least he can now share milo ice with his big brother.

Well 9.83, close enough to 10kg!

During his 12 month check up.

Ian knows how to wave bye, but he actually flaps his whole arm instead of just his hand. We discovered this when we were at the Elmo show, Aiden and I were shrieking "Byeeeee" and waving our hands off when suddenly Ian said "Eyyyyyyeeeee" and waved his arm too!

He is also more sociable. Whenever I am out and I call the maid on the phone, he will also loudly call out to me, as if to make sure I hear his voice. He also greets people he is familiar with by calling out "Ehhhh, ehhhhh" to get their attention.

Enjoys watching videos on YouTube but loves to press the iPhone home button to turn the video off too! Since he loves pressing the home button so much, he has had quite a few funny encounters with Siri!

He really enjoys food, such as bread, french fries, biscuits.

Even papadom!

Doesn't have the courage to walk into any room that has a different floor elevation, such as into the bathroom or out the front door. Which was perfectly fine for us (although we still needed to monitor his movements as he was fond of scooping and munching on any shoes he could grab from the edge of the front door). However, by the end of the month he finally figured out that he could just walk into the bathroom unassisted! We're just hoping he doesn't figure out the same thing with the front door any time soon!!

Definitely a water baby. Unlike Aiden who was scared of the beach and the sea, Ian took to the sandy beach and salty sea water like a pro! He doesn't mind his legs being buried in sand, and even attempts to duck his face into the sea! He doesn't have a problem walking on grass too - which Aiden really hated when he was a baby... super penggeli!

Look at all the sand in his hair!

He knows how to help us dress him up. When we put on his clothes, he would push him arms through the sleeves. He would even offer his feet to you if you are putting on socks or shoes for him.

Knows how to get on the dump truck on his own. However, he hasn't figured out how to move it backward and forward. Initially, he didn't know how to get off the dump truck, but by the end of the month he managed to do that independently as well.

Playing his dump truck with Aiden.

Loves munching on Mummy's shoes so we have had to resort to taping the lower racks of our shoe rack shut with masking tape. However, soon he figured out how to remove the tape so I had to find an even stronger tape which was harder to pull off.

When I holds both his hands on the staircase, he would take the steps one step one foot like an adult. He also knows how to ask for dukung. He would raise his two hands up and cry out until you pick him up.

Can you see his teeth?

The maid usually brings him and Aiden out in the afternoon to play with the other kids. Whenever Ian sees that Aiden is not using his scooter, he would walk over to the scooter to attempt to ride it! He really loves playing outdoor. He would cry and even wiggle himself out of a dukung to protest whenever we bring him inside. If we force him inside, he would even throw himself flat on the floor in protest. Usually I ignore these antics, but the maid would almost always pujuk him. It is quite easy to pujuk him - just give him any food (usually baby biscuits) and his love for food would rule out his tantrum. Seriously Ian, you should be grateful for these opportunities to play outside; when Aiden was your age we were still living in Ampang and Aiden didn't have the luxury of playing outside nor have friends his age that could play with him.

Looking mighty proud on Abang Aiden's scooter.

He doesn't like people holding his hand when he is walking. Prefers to walk independently. Worse case, he would allow one hand to be held and guided, but he would never allow you to guide both his hands. Very steadfast in his decisions, he would even push you away and walk on his own if you decide to guide him on a different path that he wanted.

Walking independently.

Ian at 13 Months

Whenever I talk on the phone, Ian will put his hand behind his head and start "talking" too - "Ehh... Ehhhh" as if imitating me! The other day, we were lying in bed when suddenly a Whatsapp msg came in. Upon hearing the chime, he sat up, placed his hand behind his head and looked at me, as if trying to tell me to pick up my phone. Loves talking on the phone too, he would actually fight for his time on the phone whenever anyone calls home. And when we put the phone to his ear, he would blabber "baby talk" and grin whenever the person on the other end responds!

Recognizes my car horn beep and the house bell. If he hears this, he will leap to his feet, walk to the door while saying "Ehh... Ehhhh" as if to tell the maid that there is someone at the door.

Three bottom teeth!

A week after turning 13months, he figured out how to clap! So we kept singing Aiden's Gymboree song "There are bubbles in the air, in the air", and he would imitate the "air" bit by saying "eyyyyrrrrrr"! He was so excited about this new found clapping that he was even clapping in bed at night. It was quite a challenge putting him to bed that night because he kept wanting us to clap and sing with him, and we were too overjoyed to say no.

Loves watching videos of himself. We showed him videos of him flapping his arms bye and clapping, and it never fails to make him grin from ear to ear, and sometimes even squealing in delight!

Smiling with a tattoo on his cheek.

He now knows how to press the Astro button on the decoder to change channel. Loves channel surfing aimlessly, much to the irritation of his big brother.

He finally figured out how to crack open the dry kitchen cabinet handle-less doors. So the cabinets have to be taped shut too, just like the shoe racks! The maid has also started tying the fridge doors with a string. Aaahhh the joys of baby proofing.

Ian trying to squeeze through the kitchen gate.

After figuring out that it wouldn't work, he climbed the gate instead!

Food wise - he hates the texture of rice, even the mashed up ones. So we have to resort to Cerelac honey baby rice cereal with carrots and sup ayam. Such a weird combination! He also hates holding food. He would happily open his mouth when you "suap" him food such as fruits (he tried ciku once!), cekodok pisang or macarons, but the minute you ask him to hold it himself, he would refuse and pull his hand away.

Knows how to shake his head! But not particularly to say no. Sometimes he shakes his head "malu malu", sometimes he shakes his head as a reaction when we tease him. Super cute!

He knows how to protest whenever Aiden stops him from doing something. If they are playing together and Aiden has painstakingly built a Lego model of something and Ian comes along to destroy it, Aiden would (obviously) stop him. Ian would then protest and push his brother away. He doesn't take no for an answer too - he is very adamant that he would get his way.

One minute they would be happily playing together, the other minute Ian would protest when Aiden stops him from playing with (or rather destroying) the toy.

He finally figured out how to walk into the bathroom and even out the front door. So whenever we open the door, we always have to keep an eye on him because almost always he's already leaping out!

Quick and quiet on his feet. Once the maid left him asleep in the living hall and was busy putting clothes away in the her room beside the kitchen. Suddenly she felt a tap at her legs. She turned and discovered that it was Ian, who had managed to walk over the open kitchen gate and went to look for her in her room!
Are you sleeping or posing, Ian?

And that brings us to the close of Ian's twelfth and thirteenth month. Welcome to fourteen months, baby!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Ian's 1st Birthday Circus Carnival - DIY Ideas!

Ian's 1st Birthday Carnival

Good morning!

Woke up this morning bright and early, and decided to take a shot at blogging about Ian's first birthday party. We had this party in December last year, but after the party was done and dusted, the last thing I wanted to do was to even talk about it! Well, the thought of going through thousands of pictures was such a turn off. And truthfully, I procrastinated because I was slightly gutted by the party... because... it was meant to be an outdoor party and... yes... you guessed it.... it rained. *double sigh*

Anyway, fast forward to a month later, after lots and lots of shopping therapy, I can now turn around and give myself a pat on the back for a job well done (despite the rain), and thank my lucky stars that the rain decided to only drizzle instead of pouring cats and dogs.

This post is dedicated to the DIY ideas and decorations I made for Ian's party. (I'll write a separate post for the actual party.) I hope I inspire you to start DIY-ing your party. Vendor credits and web links at the end of the post!

The dessert table.

My fellow loyal readers would know that I have been planning this circus party for years. It was meant to be Aiden's 4th birthday party, but what I didn't realise was that by 4 years old, he was wise enough to choose (and demand) his own birthday theme! So the circus props were just sitting in my party room, just begging to be used. Then Ian came along, so I decided to throw a circus carnival for his first birthday!

I wanted to try something new for the dessert setup. Saw the cute red luggage bags at Kaison and it inspired me to try a somewhat more rustic style for the table. A neighbour was planning a similar rustic wedding setup so she ordered the crates and graciously allowed me to borrow them! *great neighbours*

So here goes! Enjoy the pictures!

DIY-ed this frame. Sew pleats on a red material then hot glued it to the back of the Ikea Nytja frame in blue. Made the paper fan and hot glued them to cover the "curtain" pull back.

Printables "circus", (cupcake) topper and poster from a free printable available on the web (link below)

The frame also acts like a photo frame - great for those Kodak moments. I had up to four people trying to cram themselves into the frame - super fun! And it is way cheaper than ordering those pre-ordered Instagram boards, don't you think?

Next up, the dessert table!

Browsing through my circus ideas on Pinterest, I found some pretty great dessert tables under a tent like structure. Since my patio already has a pelmet framing the glass window, I used red and white striped paper (from Ikea) to cover the glass. Then cut U shapes out of red and white paper to make the tent flaps. Made the tutu by sewing pleats from soft net. Stapled white ribbon all around to cover the sewn pleats. Since the soft net was not thick, I had to find a similar colour (in this case red) material to line the back so that you cannot see the table legs. 

Since the striped paper was not wide enough, we had to cover the window using three long strips. We did such a good job, that it actually looked seamless; like one big piece!

The layout.

Ian's cake made with love. Chocolate cake with dark chocolate ganache filling.

Placed the cake on top of the bigger red luggage bag for added height.

Clown head cupcake toppers and clown candle from a local baking shop in town. Wooden letters from Typo. 

For the left side of the table, I made cupcakes in red/white striped cups and presented them in the cute ferris wheel cupcake stand. Other cupcakes were placed on the tent-like cupcake stand.  Candy canes since it was Christmas season. Jelly beans in the red/white striped cups. Rock candy from Party City.Personalized candy bar too from the matching printable set.

Loving this cute ferris wheel cupcake stand from Groupon. Ticket dispenser from Hobby Lobby. I placed the ticket dispenser on top of the cupcake stand on standby for use during the carnival games. It has a slit on the top and dispenses the roll of tickets contained within it.

Note to self - next time buy more jelly beans to fill the striped cups to the brim! And bake more macarons please! *chuckle*

For the right side of the table, I packed Choco Teddies into a cello bag and topped it with a personalized printable. These are the packets you see in the red luggage bag. Then I printed a circus inspired design and shaped them into cones, filled them with popcorn and tadaaaa... popcorn cones! Personalized jelly and water too! Circus tent tumbler at the top of the crate from Oriental Trading.

Pre-packed teddy cookies and popcorn cones.

Bought the acrylic holder a longggg time ago, it was sitting around unused because I didn't know what to use it for. Finally it became my popcorn cone holder!

Filled my apothecary jars with jelly, marshmallow, Garrett popcorn, pretzels and homemade macarons. Adorned the jars with strips of tickets to match the theme

A close up of the cake.

It was actually a triple celebration! Since Ian and I share the same birth date, I took the opportunity to bake a cake of my own too. December is also our anniversary month... a good long 9 years with Hubby. (Wonder whether I should throw a 10th year anniversary party this year... *grin*) I made white cake with cream cheese filling... nyum! Striped paper straw from Shop at Gie's and pennant banner printable link provided below.

Paper plates, tissues, napkins and paper cups all from the circus party range from Party City. Ordered this way back and handcarried them back home. Ahh the things I do for my sons' parties.

Okay, enough shots of the candy buffet. Next, I wanted the party to have carnival games. If you are planning to replicate the same, make sure you have enough help. You will need help for supervising each game booth, distribution of tickets, and manning the prizes counter. For this party, thankfully I had my sibling, sister in-laws and neighbours who were oh-so-kind to give a helping hand.

I hung three pieces of cloth from the pelmet of my living hall window, to demarcate the area for each game - Tin Can Toss, Ring Toss and Ball Toss Bonanza. I used a tree in the garden to hang the Pin The Nose on the Clown game and the clown shaped pinata. I printed instructions for each of the game for easy reference. For each game, everyone will get a maximum of three tickets to a minimum of one, depending on how they fare. So even if the ball you toss fails to go into any buckets, you still get one ticket so everyone is a winner!

The layout in the garden. I stuck to the colour palette of red, blue and yellow throughout the party.

Circus tent from Lazada. Ikea sells a similar tent too! Can you see all the hanging origamis from the tree?

Darling Hubby made each and everyone of those, then meticulously hung each of them from our trees!

My neighbours worked till past 1am, hanging these balloons in our garden. Some of them were hung so high up, I don't know how they managed to reach those heights!

The games area. Blue cones from Daiso.

Loving the huge clown face!

First up, Pin The Nose on the Clown. I printed red circle "nose" stickers and hand cut them (one by one) for this game.

Tin can toss! Sent an urgent message to my neighbours urging them to save their condensed milk tins for this purpose. Printable link below - I just printed it and stuck it to the tin. Stress balls (you know, the rubber squeezable ones) were used to knock the tins down. Simple and cheap fun!

Ball toss bonanza. I made use of multi coloured pails and ping pong balls for this game.

Ring Toss game from Party City.

I also had a Carnival Prizes Booth at the end of the games table. Kids could then exchange the tickets they won for a prize of their choice. I made sure I had enough prizes so that every child would go home with something. It was so much fun watching the kids trying their best to win tickets to go for the four top grand prizes!

The carnival prizes booth.

I used crates to give height to the booth. Then crammed as much prizes as I could with the limited space I had! *grin*

Carnival paper frame from Party City. Stuck it to an Ikea frame and placed it on every table. Printed the poster in black and white as a colouring activity for the smaller kids. It was a win-win situation, parents could eat in peace while the kids coloured! The crayons were from Tesco, I simple packed them into cello bags and topped them with a matching printable.

What circus carnival party would be complete without popcorn??!! Popcorn from Kiddy Bounce.

A bouncing castle just by my gate for the kids to jump around and release their pent up energy. Bouncing castle also from Kiddy Bounce.

Last but certainly not least, we had a clown at our party. Seen here holding the clown pinata.

Stay tuned for my next post of the actual party... and how we dived into Plan B when it rained. *cries* Thanks for reading everyone!

Vendor credits and links:

  • Printables from Printabelle (they're free!)
  • Popcorn cone printable
  • Tin can toss printable
  • Tent cupcake stand, paper plates, tissue paper, cups and paper frames from Party City.
  • Tent tumblers from Oriental Trading.
  • Ticket dispenser from Hobby Lobby
  • Ferris wheel cupcake holder from Groupon
  • Red luggage bags from Kaison
  • Wooden letters from Typo
  • Striped paper straws from Shop at Gie's
  • Mini bunting printable for the cakes from Allsorts (it's free!)
  • Pin the nose on the clown and Ring toss game from Party City.
  • Popcorn and bouncing castle from Kiddy Bounce
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