Wellbeing Wednesday – 6 things we love sharing with Toddler D


We took D out on the long weekend to the aquarium (post coming soon!) and apart from noticing all the cool sea creatures I also noticed how quickly he’d copy what other kids were saying and doing. 

“What the!?” and “Oh my God!” are just some of the things I heard him say for the first time ever and I freaked out. You might think that it’s nothing but hearing it come out of his mouth was very new to me – he is so young and innocent and cute and it just took me by surprise. 

I know he didn’t really know what he was saying, he was just copying other people, but it got me thinking. Thinking that I too need to watch what I say and do around him as he is constantly soaking up everything he sees. It’s so hard as a parent to know how and what to teach our kids (they will someday be future politicians, doctors, analysts, social workers etc!) that we can only do our best. 

So here are a few things we’ve been doing with D and he’s been loving it!


1) Staying active – Saturday mornings usually mean bicycle rides with Daddy and he loves it! He loves the wind in his face, the speed that they travel, seeing all the different things passing by like cars, dogs, ducks, and just spending time with his dad. He’s also started to watch me exercising and doing some pregnancy Pilates at home and the other day he handed me a jump rope and said “You exercise Mummy!” LOL! 

2) Enjoying the outdoors – any time we can we try to spend some time out in the fresh air and sunshine. Feels so good to be not always locked indoors especially during this winter season.

3) Growing veggies, herbs and fruits – I used to have a veggie patch with eggplants, brocolli, tomatoes and basil in abundance. That is, until Lando our dog joined the family. But now that he’s no longer a puppy he doesn’t dig around as much and so we decided we wanted D to see where food comes from. Our backyard is too small for chickens so we thought we’d get the veggie patch going again! Hopefully we’ll have some Dutch carrots, broccoli, leek and kale sprouting up in the next few months! 

4) Sharing meals together – we always eat dinner as a family, it’s just something my parents always practiced with us and D loves it! Except for when he wants to play with his cars. But luckily he’s such a great water and what other way to bond than around food! 🙂 

5) Giving thanks – I posted about D’s night time routine of reading, prayers and saying thanks and I got a lot of positive feedback about it. Never too young to start and it’s so amazing to hear what he’s thankful for each night. Sometimes he’s thankful for his mummy and daddy and aunties, sometimes it’s for his cars and sometimes it’s for random things like his bedroom door, or the light or our hands! Blessed! It makes me thankful too when I hear him say thanks for the little things because it reminds me how lucky we all are to have a door to keep us warm and readily available light at the flick of a switch! (If you missed that post you can read it here. Share what you or your kids are thankful for! – I’d love to hear it!!) #graceandthanks

6) Showing care and love towards others – D is lucky to have a lot of family and friends around him and we hope the closeness between everyone is a constant in his life. Showing affection and communicating with each other strengthens these bonds which hopefully gives D a strong foundation as he starts to build his own friendships and relationships with others – including any pets and the environment.

What are some of the little things you do with the people you care about? 

Bump Diary #2 – 21 week update


21 week update – Baby #2

After getting a few questions about what I’m eating, how I’m feeling etc, etc, I thought I’d do a bump update with a little more detail for you! I remember when I was pregnant with D that I was really curious at 18 weeks as to how other mamas’ bumps looked and what they were going through, and it was that time I stumbled across Anna Saccone’s YouTube channel and since then, not only have I been watching her videos every now and then, even D loves watching Emilia and Eduardo as Anna and Jonathan’s family has grown! I always wondered why people might want to know all that information about pregnancy etc but it is such an amazing journey that is so unique for each and every one of us and our families that no wonder everyone is so interested!

So here is my bump #2 and I at 21 weeks 🙂

How far along are you? 21 weeks

How big is baby? Weighs approximately 360g and measure at around 27cm long from crown to heel 

 Body and changes: 
Weight gain I have no idea how much I weigh now and I kinda don’t want to know! -been eating wayyy too many servings of everything lately! In some books I’ve read, they say your weight gets checked at every appointment – I remember when I was pregnant with D, my OB never checked my weight at any of our appointments! I’ll try and have an update for you next time I have an appointment with my midwife.
Stretch marks Can’t really see any new ones right now. I did get a few on my waist on both the left and right side and a faint few below my belly button but they pretty much disappeared after a few months of giving birth. Like last time I’m using Palmer’s Cocoa Butter, Massage Cream for Stretch Marks in the mornings and Bio Oil in the evenings.
Sleep Been sleeping ok lately except for the odd trip to the loo in the middle of the night. D has also been sleeping in with us on weekends so that’s been amazing!
Maternity clothes? Yes this week after constantly being uncomfortable in my choice of work attire I finally stored away my corporate clothing and finally pulled out the stretchy stuff. I was trying to squeeze into my tailored skirts and trousers up until now and I just can’t do it anymore! My poor belly needs to be comfy. I need to be comfy. So I’m totally loving casual Fridays now because it means I get to wear my maternity jeans from TopShop.You’d never guess they were from the maternity section – they look so cool! And are so comfy.

           21 week bump The Urban Ma blog21 week long weekend
Eating fruits (mainly mandarins, pears and freshly squeezed oranges), ice cream nearly every night – vanilla with that chocolate Ice Magic on top (the hubby is a big kid and loves that stuff!). Sometimes I mix the vanilla ice cream with the Coles Peanut Butter flavoured one. I really need to slow down on the ice cream though!
Feeling tired with a blocked nose – the whole household was sick all last week
Needing to use an extra pillow now to rest my leg over so I can sleep on my side, my left side that is
Wanting to be offered a seat on the train
Missing dance classes and rehearsals with Rewind!
Watching lots of Disney movies with my little man (well not lots, mainly Cars and Cars 2. Oh and Tangled!)
Bookmarking pregnancy photos like the ones below as I have some fellow mama friends that are also pregnant and since we’re not doing any dance photoshoots any time soon we thought a bump one would be fun 🙂
Noticing big cars…we have a Corolla and I love its size and everything about it but lately I’ve been looking at all those bigger cars on the road like the Jeeps and Range Rovers etc…hmmmm car shopping coming up maybe? Nah, I love that our car is so easy to drive and park. We’ll see how we go!
Enjoying every little single laugh, conversation, hug and kiss from D. He is just the bestest (is that even a word?) little boy ever! How am I going to manage dividing my attention and energy between 3 people in the family?…

See my Bump Diary #1 post here!

Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog if you’d like to keep updated 🙂


 21 week Pregnancy update The Urban Ma 


Warming up the winter days with this beef stew from VicPies

VicPies Cairnlea

VicPies Cairnlea Town Centre
Cnr Furlong Rd and Cairnlea Dr, Cairnlea

When it gets to cold outside and I feel too lazy to cook or drive anywhere, or I simply need some Viet food in my life, the family and I head straight next door to our local! – VicPies in the Cairnlea Town Centre. I’ve posted about this place before where I gushed about their amazing vanilla slice (see here).

Now that the winter chill is upon us it’s got me craving this pot of warm bo kho with big chunks of meat accompanied by fresh crusty bread.

We ordered:
– Vietnamese-style beef stew with bread $12

Friendly. The regular coffee maker always says hi to us and Mr D 🙂

Casual cafe with indoor and outdoor seating – I wonder when they’re going to take all those Christmas ball decorations down from the ceiling though!

When you first see VicPies you can be forgiven for thinking it’s just your average bakery selling pies, slices and coffee. As you approach you’ll see menu items posted on the windows and inside behind the counter showing breakfast options like eggs Benedict and popular Vietnamese dishes including pork crackling Viet rolls! 🙂

Vicpies Café on Urbanspoon

Morning coffee and nutella donuts at Daniel’s Bakery

The Urban Ma visits Daniel's bakery Nutella donuts

I never thought I’d ever get to sleep in again after having a baby. I remember everyone telling me how hard it was and how they wake up really early and you’re just non-stop. It got me a little anxious about having a bub but at the same time I was thinking it couldn’t be that bad could it?

It’s not! The start of a long weekend was began with Toddler sleeping in and waking up wanting to buy a “Dinoco Blue car” – he is obsessed with the Disney Cars movie both 1 and 2 – they’re such great movies, you’ve gotta see them if you haven’t already! Instead of going straight to the shops, we drove out to Hogan’s Corner.

Quality time with Grandma and D was spent spotting diggers, dumper trucks and cranes along the back roads of Hoppers Crossing on our way to Daniel’s Bakery.

We arrived to a line of people who had most likely seen their scrumptious Nutella donuts on Facebook or Instagram and it was so great to see a local business doing so well!

We ordered:
– Nutella donuts (a box of 6 for $7.50, or you can get a double shot size for $4 each)
– lemon meringue donuts
– salted caramel donuts
– peanut butter donuts
– a soy latte and flat white
– vanilla slice and,
– blueberry and chocolate scones

Don’t worry we didn’t finish these all ourselves! (although Toddler D finished two of them whilst I went to the grocery store to get a bottle of water, eeeeek!). We got a variety of flavours to take home to our families!

Even though there was a line out the door, the service was fast and you could tell the bubbly sales ladies were excited by the crowd as they served up donuts, coffee and fresh bread with a smile. You could even hear the baker at the yelling “fresh Nutella donuts!” from the back where they were working hard catering for the demand outside 🙂

A bakery with a few tables outside so you can enjoy your donuts fresh on the premises

Located in a little shopping village called Hogan’s Corner
Daniel’s Bakery
150 Hogan’s Road, Hopper Crossing

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Nutella donut Melbourne Daniel's bakery Daniels loves Daniel's bakery The Urban Ma blog

Pinoy Fridays – My first time baking braso…nailed it!

Nailed It Braso The Urban Ma

Ok I didn’t really nail it! The photo above on the left is my first attempt ever at cooking the sweet classic Filipino dessert called Braso de Mercedes. The above pic on the right is of course courtesy of Pinterest. Even though I didn’t nail the presentation for it to be Instagram or Masterchef worthy, it tasted every bit delicious! (just a tad bit on the sweet side – gotta adjust that recipe!).

For those of you who aren’t too familiar with Filipino desserts, Braso is well-loved soft meringue with sweet yema custard filling rolled into a log-looking shape kinda like an arm (“braso” is Filipino for “arm”). This Filipino-style Swiss roll has soft, melt-in-your-mouth meringue that reveals custard goodness inside (some versions include chopped cashews). Divine!

I thought I’d make something for all the mums for lunch and dinner (I have a heap of aunties, grandparents etc which keeps our celebrations full of laughter and chit chat! – always so festive!). I baked it as part of our Mothers Day celebrations last month where I cooked this braso dessert, macaroons and kare kare (a Filipino savoury dish, kinda like satay but not really! I’ll post up pics when I make it again.).

Boy did I underestimate the amount of work that went into preparing all this! – or maybe I just need more practice so that I’m more efficient!

All the hard work was worth it though as my aunties, grandparents, parents and in-laws have done so much for us throughout the years – always there and always with a helping hand. Love them all so much.

 Braso example cooking

For more Filipino recipes and dishes check out these blog posts here and here and don’t forget to subscribe so that you don’t miss an update! 🙂

What is your favourite Filipino dish?

Happy Friday!

Chugga-chugga choo choo! – Altona Miniature Trains

The Urban Ma blog Altona Miniature Railway

Planes, trains and automobiles. Mr Two absolutely loves everything and anything that is fast, or has wheels or simply goes! So on a lazy Sunday, a third Sunday of the month to be exact, we took him to see some miniature trains for the first time!

He absolutely loved it.

We took him to the Altona Miniature Railway to enjoy the sunshine last month before winter set in. We arrived there after 3pm (it closes at 4pm) and as soon as we had parked, Mr Two was raring to go! He met up with his friends, and us parents loved seeing the kids enjoy the trains. We enjoyed it too!

A lovely breeze, excited passengers and happy, friendly operators filled our afternoon with rides along the railway and toots and whistles as we passed the other mini trains and their passengers. I’d have never had been to this place if it wasn’t for Mr Two – I’m so grateful that he gets us experiencing loads of different things and watching his face light up in the meantime is just pure bliss.

Making memories 🙂

Altona Miniature RailwayThe above two pics are from the Altona Miniature Railway’s Facebook page which you can find here.

As soon as I told one of my workmates the following week where we had been he got excited and told us there were a few more hobby miniature train places to visit like the Altona one! His next recommendation was to check out Diamond Valley so that’s on our to do list since Mr Two has constantly been wondering, “When are we going to the mini trains again?”.

I can’t wait to take him and this time bring his cousins and the grand and great grandparents along for some family fun outdoors.

Where have you been making memories lately!?

Next up…planes!


The Urban Ma blog Melbourne

All smiles and a tick of approval from our little ones!

What: Altona Miniature Railway – hobby club

Where: 1 Blenheim Road, Altona North

When: Every 3rd Sunday of the month from 11am – 4pm

Cost: $2.50 per ride, 11 rides for $25, All day ride pass per person $17.50.

The Details: There are toilets and two bbqs onsite so you can have a picnic while watching the trains go by. You can also book for private parties on their website!

All information is correct at time of publishing.


A balcony, cozy booths and good, cheap dishes


Spring rolls, salt & pepper pork with fried egg 

Red Silks, Level 1, 200 Bourke st, Melbourne

I’ve been going to Red Silks since back in my uni days. Perfect for catching up with friends as they have big cozy booths, cheap but tasty dishes and are open ’til late! The menu is extensive and you can choose to share the mains or opt for your own single serve dish. I come here when feel like sharing a meal in a relaxed environment with great company and conversation.

I don’t think Red Silks specializes in any particular Asian cuisine so if you’re looking for authentic nasi lemak then it’s best to go to a Malaysian restaurant. Red Silks, however, offers generous sized meals and my favourites are their nasi goreng, lemongrass pork with fried egg and their salt and pepper dishes! They also serve the flavoured iced drinks with pearls and I like the taro flavoured drink!

IMG_9662IMG_9661IMG_9659IMG_9669IMG_9668Nasi goreng, chicken & cashew with rice, cute twiggy decor, signage outside, sneak peek of their menu

If you’re up for cocktails they also serve Cosmo’s and other alcoholic beverages which you can enjoy on their large outdoor balcony that overlooks Bourke st.

I keep coming back to this cozy little nook as the meals come out promptly and they never kick us out when we get too carried away having a girly catch up session 🙂

What’s your favourite relaxed hang out?

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