baby food: steamed tofu and hard-boiled egg yolk

I’ve loved this soft, silky tofu ever since Okasan sent us a box for the first time some two years ago.

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Tofu is one of the suggested baby first foods for 5~6 months that was listed in the guide book/brochures that I got from the ward office. But I delayed on giving Yui one because I only have this Morinaga tofu in mind for Yui and I hadn’t bought one yet.

When we had our first orientation at the daycare last Sunday however, tofu was among those that we need to feed Yui before she goes to daycare – they’ll be feeding Yui this so it would be best if we observe for ourselves first if yui has any reactions to the food.

Thankfully, Okasan sent us two boxes last week. Talk about perfect timing.

So this morning for lunch (Yui’s first time for twice a day feeding!), I thought of giving Yui steamed tofu with hard-boiled egg yolk which she already had with her rice cereal for two dinners.

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This Morinaga tofu can actually be eaten as is, without cooking. But I wanted to play it safe with Yui so I had it steamed.

Did the baby like it? Just look at that smile.

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my first DIY baby food

From the onset, I wanted and planned to prepare homemade baby food for Yui. It’s healthier and you can be rest assured there are no dubious additives. Also, a lot of the powdered baby food here are mixtures of two or more vegetables and fruits. I wanted to feed Yui one type at a time to make sure she’s not allergic to a certain food hence homemade is the way to go.

I figure vegetables and fruits would be fairly easy to prepare. You can just either steam or bake them then mash them or purée using a blender. The rice though was a puzzle for me. Do I cook it first before mashing/putting on the blender or have it milled first before cooking? If the latter, do I mill it myself (buy a rice miller or blender with milling blade) or have it milled somewhere (but where?)? So I compromised and told myself to have it instant with the rice cereal.

Rice cereal and wheat bread cereal. Tried it with milk but Yui doesn’t like it. She preferred water on her cereal. Very Japanese palate. 🙂 I tasted these by the way and they really taste just like rice and bread. Very simple taste. 20130316-234829.jpg

I wanted Yui to try brown rice but I couldn’t find one here. So I had it imported, through a friend. I wanted Gerber but apparently powdered Gerber is not anymore available in the Philippines. Did Yui like it? She did! Yui also has a Filipino palate, thankfully. 20130316-235239.jpg Segue: notice that the Japanese boxes say for 5 months whilst the Cerelac one says for 6 months. Read the label and saw that Philippine paediatricians recommend breastmilk feeding wholly for six months. Of course it’s the same here. However it’s recommended to start at around 4 to 6 months just for training the baby to get the hang of eating and not really for nutrition. Nutrition is still wholly dependent on breast milk or formula. When we had the required four months check up at the government health clinic, we also had a seminar on feeding solids for baby as midwives/doctors believe we would be starting solids in a few weeks or so. Plus, starting solids when Yui is 5 months works for me since Yui will hopefully start daycare come April. I want to be the one feeding Yui’s first foods and not her daycare nurse.

Whew, quite a long segue. Anyways.

I talked with my Japanese friend last Friday however and she was able to personally mash her baby’s rice cereal. It can be done! Will definitely try it when Yui’s boxes of cereals have all been consumed. So, having had done with rice cereal, wheat bread cereal and brown rice cereal, it’s time for Yui to be on vegetables and fruits.

First on the menu, sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes steaming. IMG_2384

I also bought a blender specially designed for making baby food. (The steamer was also the smallest one we could find). 20130317-000620.jpg

But sweet potatoes, once cooked, is really soft hence mashing it using this is enough. Mashing took just a couple of minutes or so. IMG_2398

Sweet potato is really dry once it cools down. Hence I added cooled down boiled water to achieve consistency that’s similar to cereal. IMG_2385

Did our baby like it? Sure bet! We had a very very eager eater straining on her straps to get closer to the spoon. She absolutely loved it.

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This being the first time, I only prepared one batch. Will try next time to make more and store the rest.

Sure it’s more troublesome what with more dishes to be washed and the steamer to boot. But seeing Yui eagerly take a spoonful (and sometimes even complaining when it took too long for me to give her another spoonful), it sure is worth all the effort. That, and the fact that you know you’re feeding your baby only the healthy stuff.

music corner

It truly was a productive long weekend, mostly with home prepping. Dining table delivered at last by Watanabe Furniture Shop, the friendly neighborhood shop although i’m yet to decorate it. As expected, dining table came in pieces. Watanabe-san and his apprentice set it all up and gave us, as part of their service, the Indonesian malong that they used in their display. Yay!

The two DIY bookshelves (each as tall as Atsushi and twice his width) were also delivered and it’s already 95% filled as of last night. Yet, we’re barely 1/4 done in arranging the books. Some books may have to be sold/donated/thrown away. We ordered for 2 more bookshelves and thankfully, they’re not DIY so it’ll be easier. Yes, it’ll be a home cum library and I am not complaining. A lot of Atsushi’s books are really interesting with a WIDE selection of topics, making me want to learn Japanese and fast. Mine are more on fantasy and novels. 😀

Anyways, we also DIY-ed the shelf for the mini-music corner. Bought it at Tokyu Hands and since we want to get immediately started on organizing the mini-corner, we opted to carry it home instead of having it delivered. See how truly thoughtful the Japanese customer service is. They put a foam on the bag handle to protect our hands. How thoughful!

Japan is probably the DIY-country, where you can DIY a lot of stuff. Found the perfect corner stand I had in mind albeit we have to DIY it. But it was pretty easy to assemble so it was just perfect.

Behold, the stand adjuster – just in case you have uneven flooring.

BEFORE: Music corner with a boxful of music scores.

AFTER: Tada! 🙂

The music scores kept piling up after this shot as we “unearthed” more scores in the other boxes. We’re yet to look for four (yes, four!) guitar stands for Atsushi’s guitars but as Hubbie said, maybe we’ll just display two, for now. Atsushi told me to try and learn playing his base guitar – I have never been as pressured…HELP!!!

Oh, just now, we had another earthquake. Thankfully, the music corner held.

going the extra mile

Was really happy when Dhonna told me of the happy news that she and her husband Ghepoi will be doing our wedding cord. Was even happier when Dhonna told me our cord was already finished. So imagine my happiness when Dhonna told me that they went the extra mile – they are making us a container for our cord! 🙂

This was the first take.

But after talking it out with Dhonna about the pearls being avoided if at all possible on weddings, they revised it to this one. Tada!

Thank you much talaga, Dhonna and Ghepoi! You’ll be blessed, even more so. 🙂 Am thankful of the gift of friendship that even distance and time can’t overcome.

Container and cord will be making their journey from US to Japan then to Manila. Buti pa sya. 😀

our wedding cord

In Hubbie’s words, “we consider this one of our treasures”  in the journey towards our wedding and our married life together. Our friends’ thoughtfulness and time spent to help us out is what we really hold dear. ^_^

Thank you Dhonna and Ghepoi for helping us out in our wedding preps even though we are continents apart. 😀 Miss you mama! 🙂

i particularly like the flower spacer(??). such cute detail.

The colors would be very lovely indeed against my ivory bridal gown and Hubbie’s piña barong. Can’t wait for it! 🙂

Dhonna and Ghepoi on our Cord

The past week has been a couple of heartaches – concerning entourage guests who couldn’t come. I would understand that they won’t be able to come. But I would have really appreciated it if they informed me in a proper manner. A bride-to-be or one who has been a bride before would have understood how I felt. 

In any case, let us not dwell on the sad part. Let’s celebrate instead happy things!

 One, I have a very supportive MOH who’s always ready to hear me out. I also have very excited Ninangs haha. Second, Lene already sent me her draft for my invites. Yey!!

And third, which really made my day, was Dhonna and Ghepoi’s news. They offered to make our cord!! So sweet of them.

I wanted our cord to be something special but my hands and I are really intimidated on any handicraft-related project. And indeed it couldn’t get any special than having a cord made by one of my bestfriend. And together with her hubbie at that. A very pleasant surprise for me and one that is certainly a big help on crossing off one to-do off my list. Distance (they’re currently based in US) didn’t stop them from helping me out with my wedding preps.

I love how they thought of using different beads sizes rather than just one plain one. And I love how there has to be silver stoppers haha.

Above all, what I really am thankful for is their time, effort and thoughtfulness. Thank you Ghepoi and Dhonna!

Dhonna was also the one who DIY-ed her cord. And yes, they’re all beads. Really pretty handiwork isn’t it?

I was thinking of borrowing this for my “Something old, something borrowed”. But Dhonna gave me a much better option. ^_^.

Updated: Church Requirements

Called both Lipa Chancery and Xavier Parish this morning and finally steps have been nailed down.

What the Lipa Chancery needs is for us to submit copies of the following:

  1. my Baptismal Certificate
  2. my Confirmation Certificate
  3. Marriage Contract – translated copy attached
  4. Copy of my CENOMAR (certificate of no marriage)
  5. Groom’s Certificate of Singleness – Koseki Tohon (Family Register) and the translated copy will suffice
  6. Certificate of Freedom to Marry for the Groom – Item 5 will suffice since Hubbie is non-practicing Christian
  7. Photocopy of the Groom’s passport

Since I’m now in Manila, they agreed that I can send the copies to them via LBC. They will then assess our papers and if cleared, and granting availability of the priest, they will schedule us for an interview on January 4 (to be confirmed) . Depending on the interview results, they will issue a clearance certificate to Xavier Parish, informing the Parish of the “go signal” for us to marry.

At the same time, I will also send copies of the following to Xavier Parish via LBC:

  1. Marriage Certificate
  2. New Copy of Baptismal Certificate
  3. New Copy of Confirmation Certificate
  4. Name/License No. of Officiating Priest
  5. Name of Sponsors
  6. Wallet size picture

If in case I still don’t have with me Items 4 and 5, no problem with them, says Sally. They will then issue the request for the publication of the wedding banns which I will publish in my hometown in Davao.

Xavier Parish will adjust our Canonical interview schedule depending on our interview schedule with Lipa Chancery, granting availability of Parish Priest. So if our schedule with Lipa Chancery is morning of January 4, they can schedule us on the afternoon of January 4 (to be confirmed).

So happy!

At the time of publication, the following are the helpful contact details of both Lipa Chancery and Xavier Parish:

Lipa Chancery: 6343.7562572; 63917.3545163; Archdiocesan Chancery, Archdiocese of Lipa, Cathedral Site, Lipa City, Batangas; Contact: Ivy P. Vilela

Xavier Parish: 6343.4160564; St. Francis Xavier Parish JP Laurel St. Nasugbu, Batangas 4231; Contact: Sally Dastas

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