Hello Bebe from Lock & Lock: The Real Time Saver for Busy Parents

Being a working mum left me with little time to prepare my son meals every weekday. As you know that I always try to give homemade foods for my son, it means that every morning I have to cook his lunch and dinner before going to work. After using Hello Bebe glass food containers for about a month, I must say that I’m impressed. This product really is a time saver and a versatile cookware that allows easy cooking, storage and reheating of foods and leftovers.

Every morning I cook and divide the foods into my Hello Bebe glass food containers. One container is for lunch and the other is for his supper. Thank God for the borosilicate glass that can withstand sudden change in temperature, so they can go straight to the oven, steamer, or microwave! The 300 ml container is perfect for my son’s meal portion so he can eat from the container straight away. After the meal’s cooked, I let them to cool and then put on the airtight lids. I usually put the dinner’s food in the fridge, just in case the food can’t last until dinner time. When it’s time to eat, my son’s nanny just has to re-heat the foods in the microwave (Oh, my Hello Bebe glass food containers can also be heated straight from the refrigerator). After it’s done, I can’t leave my home happily and “peacefully” :D.

And about the Hello Bebe straw bottle, ah my son adores it! This bottle has a perfect size to be held by his tiny hands, and its one-touch cover is very easy and convenient to be opened by a 3-year old toddler. I’ve told you in my last post that it’s his favourite water bottle as he always asks: “where’s my blue bottle?”, every time he needs to drink :D. Well yes, we even brought along the straw bottle to our holiday in London! The bottle itself is BPA free and its straw made from silicone that is safe if kids chew it. And one more important thing is, Hello Bebe straw water bottle also comes with a special straw brush and one refill silicone straw! I love the brush because it really helps to keep the straw clean and hygienic.

All in all, I really recommend these products, especially for parents with little kids. They had been tested and met the FDA standards. They’re also BPA free, made from eco-friendly material, and very durable. If there’s one thing I could add, I wish that the straw bottle also came with a strap to make transporting it easier and more comfortable.

 

 

 

 

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My Family Holiday Survival Guide!

Hello everyone! So, we’re just back from our 2-week holiday in London. How time goes waaay too fast when you’re having fun! 😀 This was my son’s first long-haul flights, and to be honest, he’s still having jet lag until today *typing with sore eyes*

Well, let’s forget the “post-holiday syndrome” and start gathering the beautiful memories (and photos!) from our last holiday. I started travelling with my son when he was 3-month old. To my surprise, he was an easygoing baby and made no fuss in the airplane. He enjoys holiday as much as we do! So when we planned to visit back London, I had no worries that he would be a cranky or fussy kid during the trip. But still, holidaying with kids mean keeping them amused (even if they have to visit some “adult” places like old museums or crowded souvenirs shops) while still maintaining their daily routines (meal time, nap time, and bed time) on track. Here are my survival guide to help you remain happy and (of course) sane during your holiday with kids 😀

  1. Pick the perfect holiday time and date

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We deliberately avoid travelling in summer time. The hotel and airplane fares (and just about everything else!) will be more expensive. The crowd is also unbearable in this peak season. I’ve never been a fan of summer time travel after all. If you’re going to a four-season country, spring or autumn will give the perfect weather.

Since we come from tropical country, we chose to travel in early September to avoid the “cold weather shock”. When the autumn season is setting in, the weather starts to cool down in London in September. At this time of year, London’s average daily temperature is around 16ºCelcius. We just need a light jacket and a scarf to protect us from chilly wind. But it turned out that my son loved the nippy weather and refused to wear his jacket 😀

We also decided to spend some more time for this holiday. Two weeks in just one country seems like a long duration. But believe me, when you’re travelling with toddler, you have to plan for a slower pace. You may only able to visit one or two places per day. Back in 2010 when we had our honeymoon, my husband and I could travel to three different countries in just one week. We had a full schedule from early morning till night. Now with a fully energetic 3-year-old toddler, a tight itinerary won’t work well for us. You simply cannot force a tired, bored toddler to enjoy your museum hopping. Most likely you will have a tantrum kid in hand. 😀

I had many wish destinations to be visited in London, but I strictly planned to visit maximum 3 places per day (as I know that my son would be too tired or bored), and tried not to be disappointed if we could not visit them all. I also spare some time in my itinerary to visit places that my son will love, like parks or playgrounds, or (my secret place to keep my son’s happy) a toyshop! *Hamleys to the rescue!* 😀

Furthermore, I also considered that we have to face the so-called “jet lag” (I will discuss about it thoroughly in second point below). That’s why I spared the first few days after our arrival to let my son adjusting his body clock to local time.

 

  1. Prepare the jet lagImage-1-4

As we had chosen to visit London, which is several time zones away from our home, I knew I would undoubtedly going to deal with jet lag, and (of course) deal with kid who are dealing with jet lag. To be honest, besides the long haul flight, the idea of crossing time zones with a toddler is one of my biggest worries. But after experienced and survived it (yeaaayy!), I’ll share you my jet lag survival tips:

  • The main key to help adjusting to the time change is the sunlight. Try to get your kids up in the morning and have as much daylight as possible. During night time, try to keep the lights out and the blackout drapes closed.
  • Offer your kids food at local mealtimes, and try to feed them during the day so that they’re not hungry at night. For big time changes, expect that your kids will wake up once or twice at the first few nights, most likely at their usual meal times. At the first few nights, I let my son wake up at his usual waking hour at our home. When he woke up, I tried not to give my son solid food, instead offered him milk and biscuits.
  • The first few days after your arrival, your kids will probably take some marathon naps during the day. I know that it would be tempting to keep your kids awake, hoping that they will sleep all night. But it can run down their immune system. So just let your kids to take a nap when it is nap time at your destination.
  • During the day, try to have lots of physical activity and encourage your kids to do a lot of walking. It will help them to have more sleep at night.
  • Expect that it will take three to five nights for your kids to adjust their body clock to a new time zone, so plan your trip duration accordingly. That’s why we decided to spend about two weeks for this holiday, because the first few days would be the “adjustment time”. In our experience, we have found that going back to east (from UK to our hometown in Jakarta) takes my son about a week to adjust, while going west (Jakarta to UK) seems to happen quicker (one to two nights).
  • And one more important thing to remember: Make sure to put yourself to bed early at the first few nights so that you have enough energy (and sanity) when your kids wake you up in the middle of the night. Try to have a nap when your kid naps. Eventually, everyone will adjust to local time naturally so there’s no need to rush things.

 

  1. Lower your daily standards to keep away the stress

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I know some mums who will freak out if their kids don’t have enough veggies and fruits. I also happen to know some mums who put their kids in a tight daily schedule like army. I didn’t say it’s not good. Every mum always knows what’s best for her kids. But when you’re in a holiday, you’ll also be in a “holiday mood”, and your kids are no exception! They tend to refuse to eat, skip their naps, and resist sleeping early. It’s normal, because it’s hard for your kids to keep up their daily routines in a new place, not to mention the time difference!

For some parents, persuading kids to eat is difficult. But getting them to eat (let alone a healthy food) on holiday is even more challenging. I always do “with the flow” on holiday. For example, my son usually has oatmeal with fruits as his breakfast. But he tends to refuse it during the holiday and wants to eat whatever his parents have. Knowing this habit, we always try to eat something healthy (and avoid junk foods) to encourage him eating healthy foods too. But this is not the end of the story. On holiday, my son also eats smaller portions than he usually has at home. Five small bites of cheese sandwich or five spoons of Hainan rice and it’s done (back at home, he usually finishes a whole portion). But it’s okay with me. As a compensation of the smaller portion, I offer him more milk and high-carb foods as his snacks (like cereal bars or jacket potatoes).

If you know you’re going to have to depend on local food that’s not familiar to your kids, before travelling, you can take them to a restaurant that serves the kind of food that you’ll get in the country or you can cook it by yourself. At least, your kids will have some idea of what they’re likely to eat at your holiday destination. But if in the end your kids still have eating difficulties on holiday, just do relax. If they won’t eat, you know they’ll be hungrier at the next meal and less fussy. Your kids also won’t suffer if they eat more chocolates, ice cream, or sweets than fruits and veggies while you’re away. It’s just for a few days anyway. You can back to your healthy, daily routines when you’re at home.

Oh, one more thing, don’t forget to pack your kids’ favourites in your suitcase (just in case it will be hard to find at your holiday destination). It will help you in “difficult situation”. For example, when my son had tantrum in a public place, I knew I could save the day by offering him Kinder Joy. And I felt so relieved that I brought some spares because, to my surprise, we couldn’t find any Kinder Joy in London! There is Kinder Surprise (or Kinder Egg) though, but it’s different. Copying from Wikipedia, Kinder Surprise is a hollow milk chocolate egg shell containing a capsule with a toy inside. While in the other hand, Kinder Joy is a plastic egg-shaped packaging that is internally divided into two halves. One half contains two soft creamy chocolate layers (one milk-chocolate flavoured and one white-chocolate flavoured), which are eaten with an included spoon, and the other half contains a small toy. We brought 7 Kinder Joy from home and all of them had saved us from many difficult situations like a boring long haul flight, cranky mood (mainly caused by jet lag) at the first few nights, or simply as a “bribe” when we had to visit our favourite but not-so-kid-friendly places. 😀

 

  1. Keep your kids healthy during holiday 

Repeat after me, healthy kid means happy kid, and happy kid means happy holiday! There is nothing worse than a late night visit to an urgent care in an unfamiliar place. And it’s no fun at all to be quarantined in a hotel room during the holiday. I’ve travelled far too many times to say that having an unwell kid will fail all your holiday plans. Even if my son’s just having a cold, his blocked (and sometimes runny) nose will make him cranky all day. And it’s very tiring to drag a fussy kid around. Once when we travelled to Palembang, my son suddenly had a high fever and literally slept all day in our hotel room. Thank God it’s just a 1-hour flight away from our home. The next morning we could catch a plane back and go straight to his paediatrician. But as you guess, we simply could do nothing on our holiday besides looked after our sick son in the hotel room.

However, being on the go often leads to illness, so here are some tips that can help keep you and your kids healthy while travelling.

  • Before travelling, I always do a pre-holiday prep. That includes having a check-up to my son’s paediatrician few days before we go, and packing a first-aid kit which contains:
  1. Digital thermometer;
  2. Fever and pain relief (acetaminophen/paracetamol and ibuprofen);
  3. Cough, cold, and flu medicines;
  4. Diarrhoea medicine;
  5. Plaster gel for fever;
  6. Microlax, to relieve constipation;
  7. Olbas for children;
  8. Sticking plasters (Band-Aid) and iodine solution (Betadine);
  9. Bruises ointment;
  10. Vicks VapoRub ointment;
  11. Insect repellents.
  • Taking multivitamins, starting a few weeks before holiday and keeping up until a few weeks after you get home. I know that the best source of vitamins for kids is a healthy diet. But when you’re eating habits change (remember that sometimes I let my son eat more chocolates and less veggies on holiday), a multivitamin can help fill in the gap.
  • Don’t forget the simple thing: Washing your hands! Dirty hands can lead to many diseases. So remember to wash your hands before touching food or feeding your kids (and make sure they wash their hands properly too), and keep hand sanitizer in your bag.
  • Know the emergency numbers for the countries you visit.
  • Too much sun can drain your energy and blister your skin. And if you’re going anywhere hot (beach or tropical country) remember that kids have thinner skin and it burns more easily that ours does. Encourage them to play in the shade and try to keep them out of the sun during the hottest parts of the day. And the most important thing, cover them with a high-SPF sun cream and keep reapplying during the day, especially if you’ve all been swimming.
  • Last but not least, keep hydrated. Most people associate dehydration with hot weather, because they just don’t feel as thirsty when the weather is cold. When you don’t feel thirsty, you may not drink as much and this can cause dehydration. We lose a great deal of water from our bodies in the cold weather due to respiratory fluid loss through breathing. Our bodies also are working harder under the weight of extra clothing, and sweat evaporates quickly in cold, dry air.Image-1-2
  • To encourage you and your kids to drink plenty of water, get one water bottle for everyone and keep it filled with water while you’re away. Individual water bottles will prevent the spread of germs and increases the odds of everyone staying hydrated. Speaking of water bottles, I specially brought my son’s favourite bottle so he could drink more. Yes, I carried along his Hello Bebe Silicone Straw Bottle to our holiday in London! This is his favourite water bottle as he always asks: “where’s my blue bottle?”, every time he needs to drink. This BPA free water bottle made of “Tritan”, a copolyester material that is safe for humans and the environmental and spotlighted as a new generation of safe plastics. It also comes with a silicone straw that is safe if kids chew it. Its one-touch cover and the tip of the straw (which has a tilt angle) are very helpful for him to drink by himself. Hello Bebe Silicone Straw Bottle also gives you a special straw brush and one refill silicone straw, which included in the box. The brush really helps to wash the parts thoroughly. I also brought the refill straw, just in case the original straw is broken when we’re on holiday. Image-1-3

 

With all the preparations and the above tips, I’m glad to say we’ve had a smooth, wonderful holiday and everyone (including my son) are stay happy and healthy till we get back home. 🙂

My New Favourite Baby Product: Hello Bebe Straw Bottle

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Maybe you’ve already known about my concern to use BPA free plastic containers. BPA or Bisphenol A is a widely produced chemical used primarily for the production of polycarbonate plastics. The use of this chemical is so profound that it was detected in the urine in 93% of the population over 6 years of age. However, the health risks of BPA have been receiving considerable attention. A growing body of research links the chemical BPA to a range of human health problems, including a higher risk of certain cancers, reduced fertility, birth defects and diabetes. High temperatures can cause BPA to leach into the food or beverage.

IMG_1651I usually use my Bisfree water bottle from Lock & Lock. Now that Lock & Lock had introduced a special product line for babies, Hello Bebe, my son finally has his very own Bisfree straw water bottle that suites all his needs. Bisfree is a BPA free material made of “Tritan”. Tritan itself is a new material developed by a well-known chemical manufacturer, Eastman Chemical. It’s safe for humans and the environmental and spotlighted as a new generation of safe plastics. It has the plastic’s advantages of lightness and durability, plus high transparency similar to glass.

Not only BPA free, Hello Bebe straw water bottle comes with a silicone straw which is harmless to human body, a dedicated straw brush, plus one refill silicone straw! How thoughtful is that! I’ve never had a water bottle that includes a refill straw, let alone a special straw brush. It’s very, very useful to keep the water bottle clean and hygienic.

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This 360 ml water bottle comes in two different colours: pink and blue. My son always refers this bottle as “my blue bottle” every time he wants to drink. He loves it so much because it has a perfect size to be held by his tiny hands, and its one-touch cover is very easy and convenient to be opened by a 3-year old toddler. The tip of the straw also has a tilt angle so it’s very handy for him to drink. That’s why, when we travelled to London two weeks ago, this water bottle is one thing I can’t leave without!

Seri Kaya Bread Pudding

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Seri Kaya, or Srikaya, or some people just call it Kaya, is a coconut jam made from coconut milk, eggs and sugar. It’s sweet, thick, creamy and “rich”. The word kaya itself means rich in Indonesian. I really adore this jam. There’s always something nostalgic about this sweet spread. A couple of weeks ago, my husband was back from his business trip to Makassar. One of Makassar’s famous souvenirs is this lovely jam. Knowing that I love seri kaya so much, he bought me 6 jars of Makassar Seri Kaya! I’m a happy wife 😀 Well, turns out I’m not the only one who feels happy. After first taste, my son has become the newest fan of this jam 😀

This morning, I was thinking to make other than just ordinary seri kaya sandwiches for my son’s breakfast. Then I remembered that I have my beautiful Hello Bebe glass food container from Lock & Lock. Ha! I should give it a try, then. First recipe idea that came up in my mind is “bread and butter pudding”. Hmmm.. that would be lovely for breakfast! A warm, sweet, one-dish meal is hard to resist in the morning. I used pandan bread to make this pudding. Pandan and seri kaya is a very good combination.

But there’s sudden change in my plan, though. My oven was suddenly broken this morning! Arrrghh… I really didn’t know what happened. It just stopped working. Blah. Well, I finally decided to steam the bread pudding. After all, my Hello Bebe glass food container is made from borosilicate glass, which withstands high heat and sudden cooling. It could be used not only in a fridge, freezer, microwave, and dishwasher, but also in a 400ºC oven and a steamer! It really saved my day!

 

Ingredients

4 slices pandan bread

seri kaya

1 egg

200 ml milk

1 tbsp sugar

butter

 

How to Make

  1. Preheat the steamer, or if you want to bake the pudding, preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4/350ºF.
  2. Grease your glass food container with some butter.
  3. Make sandwiches with the pandan bread and seri kaya (about 1 tablespoonfuls in each sandwich).
  4. Now cut the sandwiches to fit the food container.photo-13
  5. Whisk the egg with sugar and milk. Pour this over the sandwiches and leave them to soak up the liquid for about 5 minutes, by which time the pudding is ready to go into the steamer or the oven.photo-14
  6. Sit the glass food container in the steamer, or in the oven to cook for about 45 minutes or until the custard has set and puffed up slightly.

Hello Bebe: Say Hello to Easy Life!

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Okay, pardon me if I’m way too excited :D. So, few months ago I got my hands on Lock & Lock Glass, as you can read in my reviews in this blog. It’s perfect for busy home-cooks, because this product allows you to make an easy transition from kitchen to table. But back then; I wished they had the smaller size of the Lock & Lock glass. The 630 ml glass container, which I’ve already had, is actually too big for my son’s meal portion. It’s not a really big deal though, as I can always scoop out the food and transfer it to the plate. But it will be more convenience if my son can eat from the container straight away. Because it means less dirty plates to be washed later! 😀

I’ve had no idea that Lock & Lock already had special product line for babies. Let me introduce you to Hello Bebe. Hello Bebe is a brand that has been created by Lock & Lock with several icons representing the funny character and interesting storyline loved by children. I know there are a lot of health-conscious women out there (including me :D) who are trying to choose a safe product for their children. This product has been tested and has met the FDA standards. It’s hygienic, BPA free, and made from eco-friendly material.

imageOne of Hello Bebe favoured products is the glass food container, which comes in small size (300 ml). This size is perfectly fit my needs in feeding my 3 y.o kid. The container itself has the same advantages as other Lock & Lock glass containers. It’s made from high quality borosilicate glass, which is highly heat resistant. Borosilicate glass withstands sudden change in temperature, so it can be microwave or oven heated (up to 400℃ ) straight out of the fridge. It really is a versatile cookware that allows easy cooking, storage and reheating of food and leftovers. Hello Bebe glass food container is also equipped with the famous Lock & Lock airtight silicone sealed lid that seal in flavors and keep air out. This revolutionary four-lock mechanism and resilient seal is perfect to keep the freshness and hygiene of your baby foods.

So can’t wait to try my Hello Bebe glass food container! 😀 Wait for my new recipe hereee.. Toodles!

 

 

Chicken Rolls

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My son is mad about deep fried foods. If sometimes he gets bored with his meal, I just have to offer him crackers, or any deep fried snacks, and his appetite will come back shortly 😀 That’s why I always have to keep my homemade frozen foods ready in my freezer. Forgive me, I’m that kind of mum who won’t let her kid eats crappy frozen chicken nuggets from supermarket. I choose to spend about 2 – 3 hours in the weekend for cooking and preparing homemade frozen food stocks, instead of letting my son eats something that even I cannot explain what contains inside.

So last week I made a batch of chicken rolls. I actually used shrimp rolls recipe but I replaced the shrimp with chicken mince because my son is allergic to seafood. Chicken rolls may look like chicken nuggets, but as they contain spring onions and sesame oil, they have distinctive flavour. They’re my son’s all time favourite! When I’m in a rush to prepare his lunch, I usually make him a “quickie soup” (I put whatever veggies left in my fridge and boil them in the chicken stocks) and fry some chicken rolls as side dishes.

photo-9Take a peek at my son’s lunch today. We got some chores to do so I had to bring his lunch on the go. I cooked chicken meatball soup with carrots and broccoli. I also added the chicken rolls to his lunch box, just in case he’s not in the mood to eat his soup. Everything’s contained perfectly in my Lock & Lock Lunch Box. This lunch box set is my favourite! 😀 It has perfect size for my son’s portions. It’s also leak-proof, so I don’t have to worry carrying soupy dishes inside. Those 3 containers really accommodate my needs. I used the 360 ml round container for steamed rice, the 220 ml dish container for the soup, and the 220 ml divided dish container for the chicken rolls. They’re all packed inside the insulated bag, which can keep them warm for several hours. So my bag is packed I’m ready to go!

 

Ingredients

–       250 g chicken mince. I used 250 g of chicken breasts and “minced” them with my food processor

–       2 spring onions, thinly sliced

–       25 g all purpose flour

–       1 tablespoon egg white

–       ½ teaspoon sugar

–       ½ teaspoon salt

–       ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper

–       ½ teaspoon pure sesame oil

–       1 clove garlic, finely chopped

–       2 eggs, loosely beaten

–       oil to fry

–       aluminium foils

 

For Coating:

–       50 g all purpose flour

–       1 egg, loosely beaten

–       50 g coarse bread crumbs. I used panko crumbs.

 

How to Make

  1. Mix the chicken mince, spring onions, 25 g flour, 1 tbsp egg white, sugar, salt, pepper, sesame oil, and garlic into a bowl.
  2. Make 3 thin “crepes” from 2 loosely beaten eggs. You will use these egg “crepes” as sheets or wrappers. So, be extra careful to not making any holes.
  3. Divide the chicken mixture into 3 equal portions. Spread the chicken mixture evenly on the egg “crepe” and roll the “crepe” tightly. Repeat the same steps to the other “crepes”.
  4. Wrap the chicken roll with aluminium foils. Be sure that the chicken roll is fully covered with foils at both ends.
  5. Steam the chicken rolls for about 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked. Let them cool completely.
  6. Do the bias/diagonal cut to the chicken rolls so you will have 3 cm-thick pieces.photo-10
  7. Coat the chicken pieces in coating flour, shaking off any excess. Dip them into the egg, and then press them into the panko crumbs until well coated on both sides.
  8. You can now freeze them. Arrange the chicken rolls in a single layer on a baking tray, cover with cling film, and set in the deep freezer. Once frozen, remove the chicken rolls from the baking tray and store in Ziploc/freezer-safe bags. Return to the freezer and cook from frozen.

 

 

Free yourself from unsafe plastic containers!

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Before my son is born, I didn’t have any knowledge at all about the safe and unsafe plastic food or water containers. I used to use whatever plastic containers that I thought has cute patterns (such a girly thing I know :p). When I was pregnant and looked for a good brand of baby bottle, I read in so many parenting forums or articles that whatever brand you’ll have, the most important thing is you should get the BPA free baby bottles. But what is BPA anyway?

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a widely produced chemical used primarily for the production of polycarbonate plastics. The use of this chemical is so profound that it was detected in the urine in 93% of the population over 6 years of age. However, the health risks of BPA have been receiving considerable attention. It has long been known that previous studies done on lab animals showed that BPA could cause genetic damage. BPA has also been linked to cancer, diabetes, and obesity. High temperatures can cause BPA to leach into the food or beverage.* That’s why it’s not safe to use baby bottles made of BPA.

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look at these adorable patterns! 😀

Now my son is not baby anymore and no longer using any baby bottles. But using BPA free plastic containers will always be my concern. Thank God that Lock & Lock introduced the Bisfree water bottle collection. Bisfree is a BPA free material made of “Tritan”. Tritan itself is a new material developed by a well-known chemical manufacturer, Eastman Chemical. It’s safe for humans and the environmental and spotlighted as a new generation of safe plastics. It has the plastic’s advantages of lightness and durability, plus high transparency similar to glass. And not only BPA free, these Bisfree water bottles from Lock & Lock also come in refined colour, sophisticated design, and very cuteee patterns! I squeal in delight seeing their wide range of colours and patterns. These bottles are great for outdoor activities as they have convenient carrying strap and grip bottle cap to make transporting them easy and comfortable.IMG_9431

I’ve already had a 480 ml Lock & Lock Bisfree water bottle with comes in a light green cap, blue carrying strap, and airplanes pattern (they call it “Gliding” pattern actually). My son has a big admiration to airplanes recently, that’s why he loves this bottle so much. But I have to admit that sometimes I sneakily borrow his bottle 😀 Just like I did this morning. Every Sunday morning in Jakarta is a car-free day that closes the main avenue of the city from cars. We love cycling, running, or just casually walking on the streets that normally full of cars and traffic. We brought my husband and my son’s folding bikes and I also didn’t forget to take my strawberry and lemon infused water stored inside the Lock & Lock Bisfree water bottle. This bottle really helps to keep my infused water safe, fresh and clean wherever I go! 😀

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Baby Fish Pie

My son is not a picky eater. Thank God for that! But now he is one year old, and he likes to chew A LOT. Baby porridge, like I used to cook before, is no longer meet his appetite. I look for recipe that has ‘rougher’ texture than porridge but still, soft enough for his little teeth and gums. Then I found this yummy fish pie recipe from the one and only Annabel Karmel, Queen of Babies Foods :D. It didn’t take a long time to decide making this pie! I used everything left in my fridge (so the recipe below was slightly modified), and put only 125 grams salmon fillet. 250 grams of fish is too much for this teeny-weeny pies.

Ingredients

  • 375 g potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp milk
  • 40g butter
  • a little salt and pepper (for babies over one)
  • 15 g butter
  • 25 g onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 125 g salmon fillet, skinned and cubed
  • 50 g carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 75 ml milk
  • 50 ml vegetable stock (or water)
  • 50 g frozen peas
  • 50 g Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 lightly beaten egg

How to Make

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Bring a pan of lightly salted water to the boil, add the potatoes, reduce the heat and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until tender. Drain the potatoes and mash together with the milk, half butter, and half grated cheese until smooth. Season to taste (but I found that the mixture of milk, butter, and cheese is tasty enough that I don’t need any extra salt and/or pepper).

     

  2. Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan, add the onion and sauté until softened. Add the flour and cook for 30 seconds, stirring. Gradually stir in the milk and then the stock/water. Bring to the boil and cook for one minute. Add the fish, along with the bay leaf. Simmer for about 3 minutes and then stir in the peas and diced carrots, cook for one minute. Remove the bay leaf and stir in the cheese until melted. Season with a little salt and pepper if needed.

     

  3. Divide the fish mixture between 3 ramekin dishes and top with the mashed potato. Brush with the lightly beaten egg. Heat through in an oven preheated to 180C for about 15 minutes and finish off for a few minutes under a preheated grill until golden.

     

    Suitable for freezing
    Suitable for babies from 10 months

Light Weight Stroller: Your Much-needed Item when Traveling with Baby

Having baby won’t stop you, parents, from traveling a lot. But of course, your luggage will increase (significantly) if you’re traveling with tiny babies (I mean, under 1 year-old). Her formula (if you’re not breastfeeding), bottles, baby foods, toiletries, extra clothes, toys, disposable diapers (but you can always buy these at your destination), and…the list goes on… One thing for sure, you want to bring the comfort of home to your holiday place.  Comfy baby = happy baby = happy parents = happy holiday. As simple as that!

One item that will help you much is…a stroller! Well yes, of course! This invention will help you (a lot) from gaining back pain after holding your baby all day long. A stroller is also a great portable baby cot, and a high chair too! You all know that feeding and sleeping time are the most important time for your babies’ growth.

With all those usefulness, you have to consider bringing the simplest stroller as you can get. Remember your extra luggage? Believe me, you don’t want to bring your Quinny Buzz inside and out the airplane. That heavy (and huge) buggy was draining my time. It’s hard to fold and unfold, not portable, and taking up much place in car’s rear baggage. It was finally end up useless. You have short time during your holiday. Complicated buggy just doesn’t suit you when you’re away. Save your expensive-good looking-buggy for strolling along the mall! 😉

Okay, enough for long preamble. Based on my experience with heavy buggy in my last holiday, am a lit bit obsessed to look for a PERFECT light weight stroller: a stroller which is specially dedicated for traveling!

Here are my specifications for my dream traveling stroller.

  1. Light Weight (of course!), no more than 6 kg.
  2. One-hand or easy folding.
  3. Self-standing fold.
  4. Compactly fold.
  5. Full recline seat
  6. Reversible seat
  7. Handle strap (or any kind of handle grip) for easy carrying
  8. Safety bar
  9. Large canopy
  10. Not (too) expensive! 😀

With so many options in the baby store, it doesn’t mean that my mission is accomplished easily. I want a stroller which has those 10 criteria, or at least 8 of 10. Below is MY review of some light weight stroller from various brands.

Quinny Zapp

Before my baby’s born, I am so in love with this stroller. It is the most compact stroller when folded and weighs precisely 6 kg! It’s ultra stylish, and has various vibrant colors. But on the other side, this stroller has only one seat position. No reclining! I can imagine the uncomfortable sleep my baby will have. 😦

Later on, Quinny introduced Quinny Zapp Xtra, which features full recline and reversible seat. But oh no! Those features “eliminate” Quinny Zapp’s ultra compact folding frame.

Quinny Zapp Xtra when it’s folded. The seat cannot be folded. Looks like carrying a surfing board.
Pic’s taken from http://www.pushchairtrader.co.uk/en/pushchair-reviews/quinny-zapp-xtra/

To sum up, this stroller only fulfills criteria number: 1 , 3, 4,  and 7.

Maclaren Quest

Honestly, am not really fond of Maclaren strollers. But as I was on the mission looking for the best lightweight stroller, I also made a “research” upon this stroller. It weighs around 5.5 kg, and has 4 seat position 😀 It also has handle strap for easy carrying. But…Maclaren is a compact umbrella stroller. Umbrella stroller cannot stand-alone when folded.

See? Umbrella stroller cannot stand up alone. I hate to lay it down on the floor like this.
Pic’s taken from http://www.strollerreviewguide.com/ how_to_unfold_and_fold_maclaren_stroller_step_by_step

To sum up, this stroller only fulfills criteria number: 1 , 2,  4, 5,  7, and 9.

Peg Perego Pliko Mini

It only weighs 5.7 kg. It is sooo easy to fold (using one hand only!) and it can stand up alone (when folded). Its backrest can recline to more than 150′ though it’s not reversible. Ah, I’m quite satisfied! Until I realized that my baby (now 9 month-old) still needs a safety bar which bears his seat..and this stroller doesn’t have one 😦

Love it! Too bad it doesn’t have a safety bar.
Pic’s taken from http://diariazaria.wordpress.com/2011/07/

To sum up, this stroller only fulfills criteria number: 1 , 2, 3, 4, 5,  7, 9, and 10.

Aprica Karoon

Well well.. this is the lightest stroller ever!! Weighs only 3.6 kg but can be used up to 15 kg-toddler. I thought I finally found my dream traveling stroller as it fulfills most of the criteria! It has large canopy, full recline and (yes!) reversible seat, safety bar (yaay..!!), and can stand up alone (when folded). Despite its price that out of my budget (Aprica is quite expensive here in Indonesia), I really heart this pretty stroller (it has cute colors and patterns) and am so eager to buy it! But..husband doesn’t really like its not-so-compact-frame when folded. And it also doesn’t have a strap for easy carrying. Ouch..seems I have to keep this stroller only in my dream 😦

Here’s how it looks like when folded.
Pic’s taken from http://mia1016.pixnet.net/blog/post/25663037-aprica-karoon-669~~~小b波的新座車

To sum up, this stroller only fulfills criteria number: 1 , 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, and 9.

Combi Well Lite TJL-250

Actually, I accidentally found this stroller. I didn’t know much about Combi until Kei’s Nanny told me about this. Her previous boss used Combi for his son, and she loved the simplicity.

Well it’s true! Most of Combi strollers are compact and stand-alone when folded, have a large canopy, full recline seat, safety bar, big basket, and strap for easy carrying. Combi has various type of stroller, and Combi Well Lite TJL-250 is the lightest. It weighs only 4.5 kg and can be used up to 15 kg-toddler. But this type doesn’t have reversible seat. Well, you can’t have it all, darling :). Considering all my criteria on traveling stroller, I’m happy to announce that my mission is accomplished!

To sum up, this stroller fulfills criteria number: 1 , 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10!

Here are some pics of MY Combi Well Lite.

You should see my happy face! 😀

front view

back view

Side view. You can see its full-recline seat and large canopy. My baby will sleep well 🙂

folded front view

folded side view