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NZ: Road trip to New Zealand with kids 

13 Dec

Until today, I don’t know how I convinced my husband to go to go on a road trip in New Zealand WITH THE KIDS.

Perhaps it might be quite common to travel with kids but husband was not so fond of the idea. It turned out to be a fun-filled, tear-striken, wild-life seeing, picturesque trip alhamdulilah. 

  1. Plane trip to Christchurch
  2. Collection of apex rental car
  3. Drive Christchurch to Takaka 
  4. Takaka sightseeing 
  5. Drive Takaka to Rangiora 
  6. Drive to pick the parents at 12mn
  7. Rangiora farm stay @ Pete’s Farm
  8. Drive Rangiora to Hokitika 
  9. Hokitika sightseeing 
  10. Drive Hokitika to Wanaka
  11. Franz Josef Glacier
  12. Wanaka sightseeing 
  13. Drive Wanaka to Te Anau 
  14. Milford sound cruise by July
  15. Drive Te Anau to Queenstown 
  16. Queenstown sightseeing 
  17. Drive Queenstown to Twizel
  18. Dinner in Timaru 
  19. Drive Twizel to Christchurch 
  20. Plane trip Christchurch to Singapore 
  21. Tips for the Muslim traveller
  22. Tips for driving in New Zealand
  23. Tips for travelling with young children in New Zealand 

    This is what I plan to cover in the following posts.

    We travelled from 17 to 29 November 2016 which was supposed to be the end of spring and beginning of summer. 

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    Food in Siem reap

    10 Nov

    We stayed in a Malaysian hotel, My Hibiscus hotel so that we can have access to halal food in the comfort of the hotel.

    The hotel is situated around less than 10 minutes by tuk tuk from the main tourists street. Maybe there might be a shortcut by foot there but we didn’t have a chance to find out because we never once walk out of our hotel on our own. Our tuk tuk driver chauffeured us from the day we arrived at the Cambodian airport till we left 5 days later.

    We referred to this blog for the halal food places in siem reap. We didn’t really need it in the end because our driver was Muslim so he knew where to bring us.

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    Hello Siem reap!

    3 Nov

    I just wanted to go somewhere new so Siem reap it was! I know it’s not a place to bring a little baby but its near and so far it’s been pretty alright.

    It’s like traveling for the first time for me too. I can’t go through the automatic gated machines at Singapore customs and had to go through the conventional way and have small talk with the ICA officer on how it’s going to be like for little baby on his virgin voyage on board a huge vehicle which flies above the clouds – an aero plane. That was how I described our journey to DS 🙂

    The flight itself was pretty uneventful Alhamdulilah. We had the stroller till just before we entered the plane. DS was well behaved on the way up; he slept while I nursed him all the way and then he woke up like 20 minutes while in the air. Maybe there were lesser vibrations and movements so no more natural rocking motions. DS have me the opportunity to use the diaper changing facility in the super small aero plane lavatory but it was clean and pretty easy. A little cold in the toilet but luckily for me, DS didn’t have a pee accident.

    I chose My Hibiscus Hotel in Siem reap because its owned by a Malaysian and the food in the restaurant is 100% halal (I read this!).

    Rantings of a breastfeeding mother

    20 Oct

    When I made the decision to exclusively breastfeed, I thought I would have the support of everyone around me since i thought it was a privilege for a child to be exclusively breastfed.

    How wrong I was to think that way! Alhamdulilah Allah has made it possible for me to carry on this far.

    Today it just crumbled down on me, whatever that was hanging in the clouds. Somehow I feel my mother, who is going to be the main caregiver for DS when I get back to work, is not very supportive of exclusive breastfeeding. She didn’t say it out loud but I can sense it.

    🐾How to have another child if you want to continue to breastfeed?

    🐾Breast milk alone not enough. The baby will remain hungry.

    🐾4 months can give cereal already so baby will sleep longer.

    🐾How long are you going to breastfeed him?

    🐾I heard someone breastfeed the child for so long, now he don’t want to drink from bottle.

    As time went by, I realized that there were challenges ahead and i was willing to face them alone if i must but I always felt DH was a strong supporter of the path we chose; to exclusively breast feed our child.

    Well it was mostly easy for him; he’s hungry, it’s feeding time, ummi is here to feed you, ummi will be here soon…his common dialogues. He was more supportive in the beginning; keeping vigil with us while DS nursed.

    Maybe it became easier over time but I still wake up for diaper changes and night feedings. The job of a mother is 24 hours; it doesn’t matter if you are sick or well, tired or well-rested, you need a break to eat and shower and pray and…have some alone time (this is a dream). If DS needs a feed, diaper change or is just restless and sleepy you get moving!

    I have some frozen breast milk but whenever I leave DS for a few hours with someone else, it’s always,”you will feed him before you leave right?” And it always feels like I’m troubling others when they have to take care of him. Of late, he chose not to nurse when I was out for 4 hours when usually he nurses very often.

    Now he rejects the bottle! Is it my fault? Of course it is and tongues start wagging again. I made sure to introduce the bottle when DS was 6 weeks. There wasn’t a consistent effort though. I don’t leave DS with mother very often because honestly I rather bring him with me instead of troubling her. She has been rather busy these past few months.

    I’m starting to panic because I’m returning to work in like 3 weeks. I haven’t pump enough milk. The frozen milk turned bad before 3 months. I have just started a new way of storing milk because we don’t have enough freezer space. I have to plan for pumping sessions at work. I have a trip to plan and prepare for and TONS of other things to do. There is very little I can do in the day because DS doesn’t have long day naps. I’m not complaining but I hope to have some understanding and support from those close and dear to me.

    Despite all these, I enjoy breastfeeding my little sunshine! InsyAllah I can continue this sunnah. Ameen.

    Maintaining the ramadhan high

    12 Aug

    This article was written by a British revert who observed Ramadan on his own in Spain and Poland in 2013, and in Spain and China 2012, in the hope to inspire and encourage reverts and other Muslims to keep up the spirituality post-Ramadan until the next one. He also hopes that the article will encourage Muslim families to adopt a revert Muslim now that Ramadan is over and keep them smiling into the next one!

    Click to read more: http://productivemuslim.com/maintaining-the-spiritual-high-of-ramadan-when-youre-on-your-own/#ixzz2bkmOVBSu
    Follow us: @AbuProductive on Twitter | ProductiveMuslim on Facebook

    Of relatives and festivities – first of such for DS

    9 Aug

    I wonder why I miss him today despite carrying him and nursing him. I held him close to me but perhaps not as much as I would when it’s just me and my baby at home all day.

    Everyone wanted to carry him; relatives near and far. I didn’t mind but just miss him every time I’m not physically with him.

    I wanted to take a photo with DH and DS but didn’t get the opportunity until the last house. DS was fast asleep already by then. He slept quite a bit during the day as well. Alhamdulilah a well behaved boy 🙂 my family also helped with him.

    I love you dearly my dear boy!

    You will sleep with ummi today so I can keep kissing your cheeks.

    I think someone reminded me to enjoy this time with DS. I forgot to look past the challenges and embrace the wonders.

    Circumcision

    18 Jul

    We had baby Ilyas’s one month developmental checkup at the polyclinic in the morning. He is 3.71kg now! Yay! Alhamdulilah…he has also grown taller by 5cm so he is now 55cm tall.

    In the late afternoon we headed to Countryside Clinic located at Yishun ring road to get baby Ilyas’s circumcision done by Dr Zailan.

    The husband and I went into the room with him. I sat on his right side and the husband sat in front of him. With my hands holding firmly onto baby Ilyas’s arms, the husband holding onto his legs; doctor started on the job. I tried to look but there was so much blood I gagged.

    First was the injection to numb the little Mr p. Then doctor handled Mr P with surgical scissors from the tip, he opened it up to reach within and placed the ring before they tied to cut off blood circulation I think. I thought it was over when doctor started cutting the foreskin. My heart couldn’t take it any longer, I had to look away.

    There was so much pain and my poor baby cried his eyes out. His mother couldn’t cuddle him but just watched as he was being circumcised.

    He stopped crying once the procedure ended. Not sure if he still felt pain but I was holding him or because the pain was lesser after the procedure ended.

    Lots of nursing and cuddling throughout the night for my brave little man who didn’t cry as much as I imagined he would because of he pain.

    Alhamdulilah he is better now, the ring has not dropped off but he is back I normal. I’m just refraining from putting him on his tummy for now, to be safe.

    Disclaimer: I didn’t see the whole procedure because I was grossed out! So my account of how it happened is just an inkling I have.

    *Baby Ilyas had his circumcision done at 34 days old.

    # update on 27 July 2013: The ring on his Mr p dropped today at around 5pm. Alhamdulilah. And yay we an continue the motor programme!!! He was doing so well on his crawling track but I think we would have to restart…hopefully he will progress well!

    Photo of the ring:

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    Of bringing DS into this world

    22 Jun

    So much went by from the time I admitted myself into the hospital until the time I reach home and even after that.

    I shall a summarize it with these phrases;

    Under the surgeon’s knife I went, to get you out of me safe and sound.

    I felt numb until I heard your first cries when nothing but pure joy filled my soul as tears streamed down my tear-stained cheeks.

    I yearned for a look of your angelic face, one I’ve been waiting to see for 10 months long.

    They made me wait even longer before I set eyes on you for the very first time and kissed you lightly on your soft cheeks.

    When your father whispered prayers in your ear, you were quietly listening.

    The explainable joy of having my first skin-to-skin contact with you lying peacefully on my chest was one never i forget. Love overwhelmed my heart and overcame all else.

    You skillfully latched onto me after several failed attempts. Good job my lil man. Never lose the fighting spirit to persevere despite hardships.

    Pain was there with me every step of the way and it only got worse before it became better. For that I thank Allah, our creator and the creator or all creations.

    Fatigue and sleeplessness drained me dry lest i forget the joys of motherhood.

    Your occasional smiles melt my heart for you smile while asleep.

    Watching your peaceful and satiated face after a feed brings just joy and satisfaction to my heart, that I was able to do that for you. Alhamdulilah.

    Visitors come and just stare as you sleep or watch them with your large wondering eyes.

    Today at 8 days old, you made me tear with joy at just watching you sleep so peacefully, slightly twisted to your right and your little hands cupped below your chin, tiny legs crossed over the other. I believe you were in this position my womb…thus the comfort of sleeping on your side now. Alhamdulilah. Your tiny movements and stretches while you stir in your sleep is so intriguing to watch. Masyallah the creation of Allah is so amazing.

    Lecture @ Masjid Al- falah

    14 May

    Solat means in Arabic do’a.

    Hikmah of prayer:

    it is not a routine.

    1. Remind us of our identity as a slave of Allah.

    2. Remind us of the blessings from Allah.

    3. Time to repent to Allah for all the sins accumulated before performing the prayer.

    4. Increase our faith in Islam. Prayers is a form of sustenance(food) for our soul to increase and strengthen our belief in Allah.

    The best of prayers:

    1. Earliest possible time
    2. Jemaah (in congregation)
    3. In the mosque

    That was all I heard as I had to leave to get back to class!

    Hope it is a good reminder for us all 🙂

    Musollahs in Singapore

    13 Apr

    http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=lJajDsKPRFA&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DlJajDsKPRFA

    I believe these links are different from the list of Musollah locations in singapore.