Finally fulfilled one of my "to do list" items to spend quality time with RaeAnne during hubby's school holidays. Yup, a trip to the zoo ranked no. 1 in that list because I think it'll be fun, educational and a trip Mummy and Daddy have been saying for the longest time (even before RaeAnne was born) that we will make in the 4.5 years that we've been married but we never made the trip. :P
It was a very good outing. :) First of all, RaeAnne woke up early at 7.18am. Sidetrack a bit, Kudos to our gal for being so cooperative cos she actually woke up around 1+am crying cos the mosquito bites on her feet were too itchy. We already applied mopiko diligently since we discovered the mosquito bite on Sunday morning but she still scratched till the skn broke. She kenna 4 mosquito bites on her left foot and 1 on her right foot. The only worry was that she didn't poo on Sunday, and she only pooed a grape size poo in the morning before we left the house. I was worried that she had constipation. :P
We took quite some time to pack the stuff to bring to the zoo though (should have done it the night before) so when we finally went over to pick up Nai Nai and RaeAnne's porridge, it was alread 845am. We left Nai Nai house at 9am. Luckily the ride was quite fast going by TPE then SLE. We reached the zoo at 930am. Hubby and I got the adult saver ticket ($25 which included the tram ride and 1 boat ride) and MIL was lucky cos the ticket gal allowed us to buy the senior citizen admission ticket at $9 even though she forgot to bring her IC. Tram and boat tickets cost another $10. So, altogether, we paid $69. RaeAnne's ticket is FREE cos she is below 3. :)
Since it was still quite cool in the morning, we decided to do the hard part (walking first) before it gets hot. Looking at the zoo map, we decided that the must see animals are polar (bear), zebra and giraffe (in that order) and elephant because these are the few animals that are on RaeAnne's bumper mats so she knows what they are. ;)
We were lucky to catch the polar bear feeding time which was at 10am though it was already 1008am when we reached the polar bears, having made a stop to see the Maned Wolf. RaeAnne was very fascinated to see the polar bears (Sheba and Inuka) swimming, eating water melon and catching fish. :) Next, we saw lions, zebras and giraffe, she was more in awe of the giraffe cos I had told her many times about giraffe's long neck. Also, it was feeding time so the 3 giraffes were busy eating 'dried leaves' hung up on a tree. RaeAnne is also interested in 'um um' (food). ;)
We took a short walk to the tropical garden, saw mangosteen tree, gourd vines, lime shrubs, etc but it was less interesting for her since she didn't recognise the fruits and everything just looked green. There was also not much shade there. MIL suggested feeding her at the small pavilion but hubby decided that it's better to find a restaurant with air con so that RaeAnne can eat in peace and comfort instead of sweating away.
So, we walked back to Ah Meng Restaurant, located near Tram station 1. We nearly started feeding her at the al fresco dining area, not knowing that the 'real' restaurant is in the air con area. Luckily, the staff told me when I asked them for the menu. Off we went to the cool comfort of Ah Meng Restaurant. Hubby fed RaeAnne her porridge, we didn't want to order our food first cos if RaeAnne sees our food, she won't want to take her boring porridge anymore. After 2 servings of porridge, even hubby gave up cos RaeAnne was eating very slowly even though I gave her 1 straw and 1 plastic spoon to entertain her. :P
It's time for the adults to eat so MIL order curry chicken naan set, I ordered the bbq chicken leg with fries set while hubby ordered the hot dog with fries set. We fed RaeAnne with bits of chicken, naan and hot dog bun. So she was very happy. :)
After lunch, we went for the tram ride and got off at station 4 so that we can see some exhibits and make our way towards boat deck 1. Enroute, we managed to see kangeroos, Emus and poisonous snake and lizards at the Australia Outback exhibit. The entrance was quite hidden, we nearly missed it. :P We also saw the pgymy hippos (they were all sleeping) and RaeAnne got a close up view of big big fish in the huge aquariums. :) We saw the white tigers (also sleeping) and wild boar before reaching the Boat Dock 1.
From there on, it was a long, long wait. Frequency of the boat ride was supposed to be 15-20 minutes but it felt like at least half an hour cos there was nothing to do there and there were not enough benches for us to sit down while waiting. A mother feeding her baby son bottled milk and me squeezed on the same bench with 2 caucasians. Luckily RaeAnne was distracted enough by the baby so she didn't make any noise. When the baby cried, she was so cute, she kept kissing my tummy (thinking it's 'mei mei' crying). When she understood that it's not Mummy's baby crying, she even wanted to stretch out her hand to 'sayang' the baby. Luckily, the mother was only amused at RaeAnne's actions. :)
RaeAnne pooed while we waited for the boat so we quickly changed her, luckily it was the solid poo not the mushy type so we could change her diaper standing up. The boat ride was nice and cooling, can see that RaeAnne was a bit sleepy but luckily we knew she will 'wake up' at the next stop which was the Rainforest Kidzworld (with waterplay), one of our highlights of the trip. We packed so much stuff because we knew there was waterplay (thanks to all the forum mummies who tipped us off cos they already brought their kids to the zoo many times).
So, RaeAnne was well prepared, we changed her into her Konfidence wetsuit, luckily with the velcro fastenings, she can fit in though it was meant for 6-12 months. She had an extra set of thicker clothes, a big bath towel, and even a swimming dress robe. We even brought hubby an extra set of clothes so that he can accompany her into the water. She was a bit apprehensive in the water initially, when hubby put her in the water, she just sat there with her hands and legs reached out, not daring to move. But once she warmed up, there was no stopping her, she was splashing water at hubby, hitting the water, playing with the water pipes and sprinklers. She had so much fun in the short 20 minutes, the waterplay was definitely the highlight of the zoo trip. We took her out as her fingers were already wrinkly. :)
She was very cold after the waterplay and the shower in the changing room is very cold, not much help. So, we just rinsed her, quickly took out her wetsuit, and dressed up. Her hair was still very wet so I'm glad I bought her hooded swim robe (only $7 at Ehub). :) RaeAnne has been imitating adult behaviour and one of the things that she does best is cleaning. She'll copy us, take tissue, wet wipe or towel to clean the table, floor, babychair, etc but the ultimate today is taking the wetwipe out to clean the glass door outside the toilet. See our little Ninja door cleaner. ;)
After the waterplay, we went to Kfc to have a snack. A mini burger for MIL, cheese fries for me and a bit of mashed potato (without gravy) for RaeAnne. Wanted to let RaeAnne take the horse carriage ride but hubby is unwilling cos need to pay $6 for child and $6 for adult. So only managed to take a photo in front of the horse. :(
After eating, we took the tram ride back to the start and that's when I realised that RaeAnne smelled bad. True enough, she had pooed again, mushy type this time. :P
Since we were on the tram ride, we laid her down to change her diaper and she was very cooperative (probably also tired out). By the time we finished changing her diaper, she fell asleep in MIL's arms. It was 350pm, way past her usual nap time of 1+, 2pm. And she slept all the way so we skipped the elephant exhibit, past the cockatoos/parrots, even when we shopped in the souvenir shop, selected the photos from the zoo photographers, back in the car, all the way until we were nearing Tampines. She woke up at 5pm, it was a good 1hr 10 mins nap for her. We went straight to ILs place cos we had already called FIL to cook her evening porridge.
What a long day and she slept earlier at 945pm today, she had a tiring day but hope she had fun and happy memories of the zoo. Told hubby that we should bring her back to the zoo before RaeAnne turned 3 and no. 2 is 1 yr old so that admission is free for both kids. :)