The BRAND NEW Piggy Family

The BRAND NEW Piggy Family
The cartoon is by Piggy Daddy who is a full time educator and freelance illustrator. Anyone who needs freelance illustrations, please contact us! :)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Prawning and fishing at Big splash


I bought groupons so we went prawning and fishing with the gals on Wed morning. Decided to let the gals 'ponten' school since we were going for cruise at night. The prawn catching was really slow but I finally got the hook of it. Caught only 2 prawns though.

We caught a lot of longkang fish but we returned to a very smelly tank with dead fish when we came home after the cruise. This is despite us putting them into a tank with an air pump, and aquatic plants for food/oxygen. Morale of the story, next time, don't bring back the fish cos they are not hardy... :P

Kiddies on cruise

It all began when RA learnt about modes of transportation in school in the beginning of the year. She said Teacher Samantha told her there are hotel rooms in the big ship and asked me if it's true. Told her that it's true and that's called a cruise ship and there are many rooms inside a cruise ship. She was awed. And I promised her that when Mummy has saved enough $, I will bring her on a cruise ship.

December was a good time to fulfil that promise. Since we had already gone to Taiwan with the extended family in June, I didn't want to go anywhere far. So decided to bring them on a 3d2n cruise to Malaysia on 19-21 Dec. Especially booked the theme cruise with Nickledeon on board so that they can get up close and personal with Dora, Spongebob square pants and gang. ;)

Day 1

Although we were staying in balcony class, our balcony class privileges ended once we checked in and collected the room key cards at 830pm. After that, everyone (whether balcony class or the other world cruisers) joined the super duper long queue to clear customs then get on board Super Star Virgo. Thought it wasn't fair since their marketing material said balcony class will have boarding privileges. The kids didn't mind the long queue, they were busy running about and playing with the queue posts. But hb and me were getting frazzled pulling them back in line, there were lots of people esp indians and people try to cut queue if you are not alert. :P

Anyway, once we got on board at 9+pm, we were given welcome drinks and that helped to cool down the hot tempers. We went to our room after 1-2 cursory photos at the lobby. After studying the programme, decided to go to Activity Centre, Deck 12 to sign the gals up for Nickledeon Tea party with Dora and gang tomorrow morning. It is not free though, each kid is $12. But I reckon since it's a Nickledeon cruise, I should just let them try it out. Charlie child care centre was having an open house from 10-1030pm but I only realised at 10.15pm so the gals had fun for 15 mins at the ball pit, drawing and colouring.

Then, we went for supper at the Pavilion (the chinese restaurant). Food was good, 5 dishes including 1 whole fried fish, gnor hiang, fried egg, steamed minced meat patty, stir fried vegetables. I had my favourite teochew 'muay' with side dishes too. We were persuaded by the waiter to order a warm soy milk for the gals and that cost $7.50. Omg!

There was a magic show at 11.15pm and we weren't sure if the gals will be able to stay awake or understand. But once we told RA about it, she said she wanted to go. Thought since I let them nap at home till 6pm today, they should not be that tired. So off we went to Lido at Deck 8. We were a bit late so we had to sit at the back, the figures on stage were a bit small and there were no kiddy booster seats so RL sat on my lap but RA managed to sit on her own. RA enjoyed the magic, RL didn't really understand the whole show but with the laser lights and music, she had fun too cos she didn't fidget nor ask to go back. :)

We went back at 12.15pm and after the daily bedtime routine, the gals finally ko at 1.30am.

Day 2
For some reason, I woke up early at 5am, so went for breakfast at Mediterranian buffet restaurant at 630am. After that, popped by the casino since there is no entrance fee unlike RWS. Went back at 8am but everyone was still sleeping soundly so I went back to the casino again. Left again at 840am and they were still sleeping but just as I got comfortable to take a short nap, RL woke up. So, we freshened them up and after some milk, we went straight for the Dora tea party. Food was provided for the kids eg. mini burgers, nuggets, mini cup cakes, fruits etc.


The tea party was a bit chaotic because the organisers did not restrict the number of pre registered participants. They had 70 over kids who pre registered and there was not enough seats for every family. Luckily, we reached 5 mins ahead of time so we got a table but even then, it was only a partially sheltered table. With the bright sunlight, RA and RL had difficulties keeping their eyes open for photos at the table. Dora, spongebob and company finally arrived at 1030am, and everyone was allowed just 2 photos each due to the crowd and lack of time.


We went to the kiddy pool after that. I deliberately chose our room at Deck 10 cos it's at the same level as the pool and very near to walk. RA enjoyed the warm water at the jaccuzi and both gals enjoyed the slides. The end of slide was deep water of about 1.2m so Daddy had to stand by to catch them as they come down though.

After showering, we had lunch at the Japanese restaurant since we still have dining credit. The gals liked the miso ramen. After lunch, we went back to the room to rest but only RA and me napped. RL couldn't sleep so hb brought her to walk around the ship. He didn't manage to knock her out though. We had afternoon tea then went to the Nickledeon Arts and craft session which was free and the gals got tattoos too.

It was makan time again, so this time, we went to Bella Vista for western set dinner. We ordered 4 mains cos the kiddy meal was just nuggets with mashed potatoes and the gals didn't like mashed potatoes.

Food was good but it took a long time to come and RL threw tantrums and had crying fits there cos she had no nap and was cranky. Hb had to carry her away for a walk. But luckily after some soup and bread, her mood brightened.

There was a musical show called 'Somewhere in Time' at 9.15-10.15pm at the Lido. As usual, the gals wanted to go for it. Besides the usual song and dance, there were also quite a few acrobatic and gymnastic performances. RL likes it so much that she danced and clapped and even shouted 'Yeah Yeah, 你真棒!' Daddy was slightly embarrassed but I love musicals and glad that at least one of them likes it as much as me. I am also secretly pleased the shows are inclusive cos on my own, I wouldn't have bought exp tickets for them to watch such shows esp if I dun know if they are still too young to understand.



We strolled around the ship after that, and we went back to the room to rest earlier since RL is tired. They fell asleep at 11+pm that night. :P

Day 3

The gals woke up late at 930am so we went straight for BF at Mediterranian Buffet which ends at 1030am. After BF, let the gals decide what to do with Daddy cos I wanted to go back to the casino to play a bit more plus get back my ecash. Didn't realise that they close early at 11.10am so I only played 10 mins and the ecash machine was spoilt so I can't even get back my $ unless I go and queue at the super duper queue at the main reception counter.

Came back to tidy up our belongings and prepare to check out by 12noon. The gals and daddy were at the video arcade. After showering both of them, we took our luggage and went for lunch at Blue Lagoon, we still had some dining credits left so it was time to use it up. After lunch, it was a long queue again to queue and pay, so we finally left the ship close to 2pm.

Monday, December 17, 2012

2D1N Legoland/Hello Kitty Town


Brought the gals to 2D1N trip to Legoland and Hello Kitty town from 9-10 Dec. We joined the tour which was organised by Tamp Central cc which was just 5 mins walk from our home and assembled at 7am outsde the CC. MIL also joined us cos she heard from her friends that it was fun.

The coach went by tuas second link, customs was fast and we changed to a Msia coach, and a malaysian tour guide joined us.The tour guide also told us a piece of good news. He changed the itinerary, instead of going to Legoland first, we will be going to Hello Kitty Town first. He said that since it's sunday, it's better to go Hello Kitty town first and only go Legoland on Monday cos Legoland will be very crowded on Sunday and there are a lot of long queues. Since it was still early (before 9am), they brought us to BF first.

We reached Hello Kitty Town 10 mins before opening hr so we waited around until the tour guide managed to get our tickets. There is a nice gift shop just before the entrance and there is a cute HK table with a few chairs and HK toys there so the gals were happy to wait there. Once we entered, we queued for a ride at the Hello Kitty tea cup ride.

There are 5 different stations at HK town and our ticket entitles us to have 1 turn at each station and the staff will stamp on the ticket. We went straight to the nail station cos RA and RL love to have their manicure. The queue was not long so we wre given a piece of nail stickers and got in less than 10 mins. I expected to see at least 1 staff to help the gals to do manicure, but there was no one. Just bottles of nail polish on the table and we have to paint the nails ourselves. It was totally DIY so I was disappointed. What is the difference from me painting the gals' nails myself at home? There was two nail polish drying stations at the corner. It was difficult to paint the nails for the gals cos the nail polish was a bit dry and v sticky. Also, there were only a few bottles of pink colour which the gals wanted. The rest were red and purple. But there was a 15 mins limit at that station so the guard asked us to hurry up even though I came into the room late after bringing RL to the toilet.

11-1130am was time for photo taking with Hello kitty and Daniel. The queue was one of the longest but more people joined in behind us. Then we went to Cookie Making station, the queue was longer by then. When we went in, we were given a piece of Hello kitty shaped cookie each and 1 paint brush. There were 3 bottles with strawberry jam, chocolate syrup, lemon jam. The 'cookie making' was just decorating the Hello Kitty's eyes, nose and whiskers with the jam/syrup. What seemed so easy for adults, was not as easy for young children. RA had no problems dotting the eyes and nose and whiskers. But RL dripped the jam all over cos she didn't have good fingers control and partly because the paint brushes given were as thick as 1 cm and the brush was already bushy.

We went for lunch at Red bow cafe. We ordered fried bee hoon with fried chicken wing set, fried rice set and sandwiches. The fried bee hoon was good but spicy so the gals refused to touch it after 1 bite. The fried rice was not v nice cos a bit bland so the gals ate mainly the chicken wings and sandwiches.

We went back around 1+pm and the queues were quite bad by then, but we still had 4 stations left - Jewellery making, Hello Kitty House, Hello kitty Costume dress up, Magic black. Jewellery making station to me was a waste of time, they gave us a shiny chain each and a pendant so all we had to do was hook the pendant onto the necklace. Don't even need to loop through the necklace. Why go through all the trouble to queue for something so easy? Might as well just include the pendant and necklace as a free gift when we buy the tickets. Duh.

Anyway, Hello kitty costume dress's queue was the longest. Maybe because it involved putting on the HK costumes and posing for photos. We had time to go for another round at the Hello Kitty tea cup ride and visit HK house while MIl helped us to queue at the costume dress up station.

The last station was Magic Black. Frankly, I didn't really understand the game concept except that we need to wave the 'magic' lamp at different stations to get different alphabets to guess a code. The castle was quite nicely decorated though. the code was 'black' and we were given a certificate for guessing the code correctly.

We left the HK town at 4pm, and went to Amansari Hotel JB City Centre for check in. Check in took quite long cos our rooms were not ready despite the tour guide calling the hotel ahead of time to get the rooms ready. We had requested for connecting rooms, and were lucky to get two rooms with a small connecting corridor that we could lock from inside. There was no bathtub but that is expected of a 3 star hotel. But the hotel was very adamant and refused to give in when we requested for 1 more bath towel for RL.

After shower and buffet dinner (included) at the hotel at 7pm, the tour guide brought us shopping at KSL. We went to Jusco and bought some cheap tights and PJs for the gals. The gals were tired after we came back cos they didn't have any naps, so they ko quickly.

The next day, after BF, we checked out of the hotel at 9am, went to a local produce shop to buy some biscuits and local snacks. Then, we proceeded to Legoland. But we were still 5 mins early, could see the long queues waiting to buy tickets, and waiting enter Legoland.

It was bright and sunny, we were prepared for sun so we brought sun block, hats, stroller with attached umbrella, etc. Went straight for Lego city, since I heard that boating rides, car rides and train rides were v popular. Good choice cos the boat ride queue was still short. About 15 mins, we got on the battery operated boats. We had
to split into two boats cos each boat had max. 2 adults and 1 child. RL made noise and complained when she was given the blue boat instead of red boat like RA.

After the boat ride, we went to Legoexpress for the train ride. Made a stop at the game booth just opp the train station cos saw that it was basketball tossing and thought hubby might like it. He did and was lucky to win two gigantic angry bird soft toys with just RM40 (RM20 for 3 balls). He might have won more toys but after he got the second angry bird with the first ball of the second set, the staff told him no more. He felt quite cheated then cos he wanted to win another 2 birds with the remaining two balls. haha. But I was relieved, two gigantic angry birds is already a logistic issue and I wondered how we are going to bring the two birds back in a coach.

Many people stared and pointed at the two angry birds when we were queuing for the train ride. One woman even asked hubby if he can help her to play and win an angry bird for her son. The two birds got a free train ride cos we didn't dare to leave them behind in the unmanned stroller.

Wanted to go for the car ride, but the queue was long and RL was not able to ride cos of the height limit. Plus RA was feeling hot, so, we decided to go for lunch first, cos RL fell asleep on MIL's shoulder.

I was forewarned by mummy friends that the food at legoland was expensive. RM25 for a chicken rice set. But Universal studio charges similar prices so it will not be different for legoland. Which merchant will give up the chance to profit from a captive audience right? At least they serve mushroom soup, which are the gals' favourite. RL only slept for 5-10 mins so she was in time for lunch. So they had chicken rice mixed with mushroom soup.

After lunch, we walked towards Lego Imagination, and spent time at the indoor playground, and went for a ride at the mini train. By then, the sky was darkening though it was only 2+pm. Walked to Build city with RA while hubby brought RL to go to the toilet. They took a long time and by the time, they were back, it was already 2.45pm and the sky was really dark by then. Since we were in the middle of Legoland and we are supposed to meet the tour guide at 330pm, we decided to walk back towards the entrance.

Bad move! Cos before we get very far, it started to drizzle then it soon became a downpour. Though we had a stroller, umbrella and stroller cover, we also had 2 gigantic angry birds. So, in the end, we had to pause and let the gals put on their rain coats so that we can put the two angry birds into the stroller instead. By the time, we reached the main gift shop near the entrance, we were cold and wet esp the gals despite their raincoats and our umbrellas sheltering because the rainwater managed to seep in and wet their collars and sleeves.

We did not bring extra set of clothes with us cos we thought we were already equipped with rain gear. But luckily, MIL (being the wiser and more kiasu one), brought 1 set of dry clothes so RA changed into a dry tee shirt while RL got a pair of dry pants. But they were still uncomfortable cos they were still half wet. So, I went into legoland to buy a set of clothes. The shop was super wet and crowded with people hiding from the rain. I only managed to get 3 t shirts for the gals and hubby and big bath towel. Couldn't get a pair of pants for RL cos they don't sell bottoms. Only dresses and a kiddy dress costs RM179.90. Really too exp in my eyes. Total bill was RM199+ but the sale staff refused to give me two big plastic bags (for the angry birds), even when I told her I will pay for them. After much persuasion, she finally gave me 1 plastic bag. Don't understand why they had to be so inflexible about this. :/

Went to get the photos and asked RA to pick a bag of lego bricks while I waited for the photos to be printed. Had a shock when I had to pay the lego bricks. RM90+ for a tiny bag (those usually used for gummy sweets). But I had no time to quibble cos we were already late and need to rush to the meeting point. Finally, we were one of the last few to board and the coach left at 4+pm.

They brought us to a nearby shopping mall and we had a hakka chinese dinner. No time to shop this time but I grabbed a few t shirts oustide the restaurant before the coach came at 5.45pm.

JB customs was quiet when we reached at 6+pm, no queue at all. Then, we crossed over and reached SG customs. It was a longer ride from SG customs back to Tampines, so we reached home sweet home at 8+pm.

I asked RA which place she enjoyed more. Hello Kitty Town or Legoland. I was expecting her to say Legoland cos of the variety of rides etc. But she said HK town. She said it's because she can make jewellery, cookies, do manicure etc. The same activities which hubby and I thought were really too easy and frivolous. Really shows that children thinking can be different from adults so we should not impose our thinking upon them. ;P

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Happy anniversary!

Happy ROM wedding anniversary! It's our 8th year together. Thanks for being such a wonderful hubby . ;)

Friday, December 7, 2012

Ballet trial for Raelynn


After their childcare year end concert, we are convinced that Raelynn loves to dance, she danced well for the concert, and can tell that she enjoys practising the dance too. So, hubby finally told me to let her try out ballet cos he thinks she cannot sit still and may not be able to focus long enough to learn piano.

We have come a long way cos he was not keen for the gals to learn ballet cos he thinks they will walk funny (like a duck) if they learn ballet. No offence to all the ballet dancers ya. :P

RL just turned 3 yrs old last Sunday so she just made it for Bebe ballet which is for those 3 - 3 yrs 11 mths. So, tonight, after dinner at Century Sq, we went to Crestar Dance school for trial at Abacus plaza. I brought along a ballerina looking pink dress for her and especially let her change into it before her trial.

When we reached the centre, it was dejavu cos I brought RA for the same trial twice in end 2011 and early this year. First time, RA cried cos she didn't want me to leave the room. Second time, I bought her a ballerina tutu dress, and deliberately went for trial in the same class as her best friend and CC classmate, Valerie. So, she didn't cry but after the trial, when I asked her if she wants to learn ballet, she still said no, she doesn't like to dance. So, I gave up on ballet for RA after that.

After filling up the registration form and paying $32.10, the class started at 730pm. After I helped her to take out her shoes, Raelynn just walked into the room, plonked herself down on the floor with the other gals whom she has never seen before. Looked at the teacher, without even a backward glance at me. I shouldn't have worried that she will cry like RA at all. In the end, I was the one who 不放心 and went into the room to straighten her hairband and told her that I will be waiting outside. She can't even be bothered to answer me. kaka.

It was a 45 mins trial, I popped by the small window in the door now and then to peek at her. She was jumping, dancing and following the teacher. Not shy at all though her movements are a bit off compared to the other gals. After the trial, I asked her teacher, Ms Li Tong, if RL did ok. And she said RL can follow instructions, not familiar with the movements yet but it will get better with practice. I asked RL if she wants to learn ballet and she didn't hesitate at all, and gave me a resounding yes though I asked her a few times.

Since there is no new classes scheduled in 2013 for Bebe ballet, we decided to enrol her immediately since hb and I are more free during the school hols. School fees per term is $203.30. School fees will increase to $256.80 for new classes so we are exempted from that increase for now. We paid $341.19 cos there are 2 remaining lessons in Dec and for Jan-Mar 2013. RL couldn't wait to wear her ballet shoes but too bad her size is oos. So, we only bought her attendance book and socks today. Didn't buy leotard and skirt cos it was a bit exp, $47.10, secondly, I was worried she will outgrow it before her assessment (next yr), and finally, it's not easy to bring her to toilet if she is wearing a leotard.

Her yamaha Music Wonderland lessons will start next Jan, almost same timing as RA (Sats 12.15-1pm). So, we'll monitor and see which one she likes better. ;)

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Cream of mushroom soup


The gals love mushroom soup so we always order it when we go to western restaurants. Was browsing MIL's i weekly and I saw a step by step recipe for mushroom soup. It looks good so decided to buy some mushrooms when it was on offer at NTUC recently. Was also motivated to put the new NTUC bowls I bought to good use. kaka.

To be honest, I never knew cooking mushroom soup is so much work cos I grew up with campbell soup. My mum can't cook western soups so for any western soup, my dad who was a canned food hawker, will take a can of campbell soup from his inventory, open it, add a can of water, stir until it boil. Voila! Soup is done. My FIL does this too when the gals have dinner at their place and they didn't cook soup. hee.

Preparing the soup took almost 1 hr. It will take up to 2 hrs if I included the time I took to boil vegetable stock. (how I wish NTUC sells packet veg stock like those swanson chicken broth) No wonder restaurant mushroom soup tastes so good.

I modified the recipe a little cos I only had 1 onion in the house (defnitely not 200g) just couldn't find thyme (fresh nor bottled). It was oos even at NTUC Tampines Mall. Cold storage probably has it but I am too lazy to walk to Tampines One. :P The recipe asked for bay leaves too so I had to buy a bottle, hubby being the 'chin chai' chef, kept telling me to omit all these 'exp and seldom used' herbs. But I was worried it will affect the taste.

But luckily, the gals loved it. RaeAnne said it was better than pastamania soup and Raelynn said 'Yummy Gumbo' - that's her highest level of praise for food after watching The Princess and the frog. ;) So at least it was worth the effort. With soup, we still need a carbo so I just fried a easy tomato macaroni since we haven't had that for a long long time. ;)


P.S. Recipe for veg stock
1) 3 stalks of celery
2) 1 onion
3) 2 medium carrots
4) 5-7 cloves of garlic (washed but unpeeled)
5) Some mushroom stalks
Just put everything into a pot of cold water until it boils then let it simmer until stock is sweet.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Raelynn is 3 years old!

Time flies! My little bundle of joy is already 3 years old. She is 92cm tall and 13.6 kg. Although she is not as chubby like a baby, she is still as cute. She is the happy go lucky type and never asked for any birthday presents. But I bought a helium balloon for her and a few small stuff.

We are not doing any big celebrations since already had a celebration in school. But will be bringing the gals for a staycation at Festive Hotel, Resorts World Sentosa and bring them to Universal Studios today. :)


We reached USS around 11am, could have been earlier but we forgot something so had to loop back to retrieve it while I was with the 2 gals queuing for our turn to change the RWS invites vouchers into USS tickets. Luckily, the USS guest services allowed us to leave our luggage at their lost and found counter temporarily. If not, we will waste even more time going to Festive Hotel just to deposit our luggage there. We also got a birthday badge for Mei Mei since it was her birthday. So, she got free popcorn, photo album and discount coupons compliments of USS.

USS was surprisingly not crowded and the weather was good though it was a sunday, cloudy so it was not warm. Hubby wanted to see Sci Fi city cos we never saw this adventure zone though we already been to USS twice. Too bad for hubby, we have no boys and the gals are not interested in transformers. Mei Mei even cried when we tried to pose with Bumble Bee. haha.


After our lunch at KT grill (I had one for one deal using RWS invites card), we went to Jurassic Park cos I wanted to try the Canopy flyer. It was drizzling slightly by then. So, decided to go for the open air dinosaur rides first since RL wanted to sit in it. It was 30 mins wait for the canopy flyer. From the ground, the ride looks quite slow but I didn't realise it was so fast. The ride is for kids that are 92cm and taller so RL just made the height limit. But she was so scared, took a lot of convincing before she was willing to go on the ride. And the ride is really quite fast esp around the bend. I closed my eyes for some parts too. ;P

After going for the dinosaur ride again, cos RA wanted to sit on the pink dinosaur this time, we used our express pass and went for the usual stuff, ie. Shrek 4d show and Madagascar crate adventure. We also went 3 rounds at the Madagascar carousel. Mei Mei's favourite.


When we left USS, it was already 430pm, walked to festive hotel to check in. Couldn't get a free room upgrade nor the Deluxe King room that I reserved. Only got a Deluxe twin room, if not, it will be Deluxe King but on a smoking floor but I didn't want to take the risk of a stinky room. Luckily, the room had a sofa bed so it was enough for 4 of us. It was a good thing we didn't ask MIL along this time if not one of us may have to sleep on the floor. I didn't realise that Deluxe rooms have no bathtubs tnough so the gals esp RA was disappointed.


But the hotel staff did remember about our birthday celebration so they sent up a cake for us. A deliciously rich chocolate cake. Since the gals loves their hotel room, hubby tapow food from Ruyi and we tucked into our favourite 'Ru Ruo Fan'. Their chicken wings and guo tie were very good too.

The gals didn't nap at all. RL knocked out at 920pm but RA only slept at 11pm. Even hubby slept earlier than her.


The next morning, after BF, we brought them to Hard Rock Hotel Pool which was highly recommended by my forum mummy friends. It was indeed a nice pool with a man made beach. Too bad we didn't bring beach toys so we only had the bucket which was the free toy we got from KT grill for the kids meal. Still it was clean fun, no need to worry about broken glass in the sand etc so we could leave the gals to play.


There was shower cubicles (with hot water and toiletries) at the toilets near the towel counters. Too bad, we didn't know earlier so we could only shower the gals but both hubby and I did not bring along our clothes, just our robes. So, we still had to go back and shower before we can go for lunch.

Went to Coca restaurant since I got 1 for 1 promotion. $24++ for adult and $17++ for kids above 5 yrs old so the gals dine free. ;)



Prawn Aglio Olio

Did an ultimate aunty thing and collected NTUC bonus points diligently over 1 month. I had a grand total of 53 bonus points. All for the sake of getting pasta plates cos the gals love to eat pasta. 16 points to get 1 set of 2 plates at $5.95. Pastamania is their favourite haunt and their favourite home cooked dish is also spagetti bolognaise. Actually, I only need 4 plates. But I could get 6 plates cheaply. In the end, I decided to get 8 plates cos 6 plates are really not enough to entertain guests. And we are having a pot luck gathering at my brother's new place during Xmas.

Was cracking my head over what to bring or cook. But decided to make use of the new pasta plates and cook pasta. But my mum doesn't like any buttery, creamy or tomato base pasta so aglio olio pasta is the best choice, since it's garlic and oil base.

But first, I got to learn how to cook it cos I have never cooked it before. haha.

Googled online for recipes and found one that did not look too difficult. Recipe I only have frozen deshelled prawns at home so couldn't make the prawn stock from the shells. So, I made stock with boiling dried sakura shrimps which I bought from Taiwan previously. Also, I didn't use fresh cut chilli cos was afraid it will be too spicy for hubby. Only used dried chilli flakes from spice bottles. I did a non spicy version for the kids with only garlic and pasley.



Verdict: The pasta was not salty enough but the spicy version was still too spicy for hubby. The gals didn't like the garlic bits. And I think the stock will be sweeter and richer with real prawn shells so must make sure I buy fresh prawns when I want to cook this next time. Never mind, still got lots of time to practise. haha.

School holiday and RaeAnne's first professional hair cut


Friday, there's no school cos it's rest day after concert. I was keen to bring them to the zoo to see the pandas before Raelynn turns 3 years old so that we can save on her admission ticket. But the girls preferred going to indoor playground instead of the zoo so we went to Kidsplay at Tampines One, the nearest indoor playground.


It was their last day of $12 for 1 hr promotion so it was good cos we did't have much time for them to play before having lunch. After lunch at Dian Xiao Er, we passed by the kiddy salon. And a little girl with very long hair was getting her haircut while watching tinkerbell dvd. The salon was having a $10 promotion (instead of $20) so on a whim, I ask RA if she wants to have her hair cut.

Before


I was surprised when she said yes cos she has been keeping her hair long for more than 6 months in ancipation of the concert. 杨老师 asked to keep her hair long so that she can tie up her hair during the concert.


She said she wanted to have her hair like mine. So, I asked the hairstylist to cut and leave about 2 inches of hair below her ears. 奶奶 has been RaeAnne's personal hairstylist since she was born. So it was the first time she is getting a professional hair cut. She enjoyed watching the Ratatouille DVD that she chose while Mei Mei was kept entertained playing with the toys in the little play area. The hairstylist commented that RA has a lot of hair and true enough, there was a heap of hair on the floor by the time she was done.

After


Although she enjoyed the salon experience, she didn't like her new hairdo. She said she had this short hairstyle when she was very young. So, she was quite upset. On hindsight, maybe I shouldn't have taken her seriously. Should have asked the hair stylist to cut it a bit longer so that the change is less drastic. haha.

Elfa concert 2012

29 Nov 12 - the day we have been waiting for eagerly cos it's the day of Elfa concert. The gals have been practicising their dances for a long time but we only get to see snippets of it at home. Not the whole dance and definitely curious about their costumes which we paid on top of the concert tickets.

Raelynn's dance is the Mexican hat dance and RaeAnne's the popular Gee by Girls Generation. They looked so different with their full make up and their hair tied up that I couldn't recognise them even though I went close to stage to take photos. haha.



Both of them danced well, RL was quite natural and responds well to the beat. RA is flawless cos she is older and remember the complicated dance steps well though it was a pity she hardly smiled.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Belated post : Penang trip Sept 12


I just realised that I forgot to post about our Penang trip in Sept 12 when one of my forum friends asked me for the itinerary. Shows how busy (lazy) I have been since starting work full time. :P Anyway, better late than never right? haha.

Day 1
Took airasia flight to Penang, my tickets were bought 1 yr ago in Sept 11 during the zero $ promo but I added two more tickets for my mum and aunt last minute cos they wanted to go to Penang too. This time, quite disappointed with Airasia cos the flight was delayed by more than 30mins and there was a substantial turbulence dip. Enough to make a few kids (myself included) scream.

We Stayed at G Hotel again, it is our third stay there and their service and quality has been consistently good. When we reached the hotel, just nice to check in and enjoy our complimentary ice cream by the hotel. After putting down our luggage, we had a nice dim sum lunch at one of the chinese restaurants at Gurney Plaza (next door to the hotel). Unfortunately for me, I started a bad bout of flu on the day of our departure and I had full blown symptoms (bodyaches, chills and fever) so I rested in the hotel room while the rest continued shopping.

That night, we strolled to the nearby open air gurney food centre for dinner. RaeAnne was very whinny though, maybe cos she was tired and also cos she is not used to such 'no frills' street dining.



Day 2
Still feeling sick, but luckily it is still our F&E day. Took a cab and visited the nearest Tesco, bought some kiddy high heel shoes and slippers there. The gals enjoyed the rides at the amusement park at Tesco, luckily the rides were in RM not SGD so still ok. Then, we had lunch at Swensons. Popped into the pharmacy and got a stronger med for my flu and esp sore throat. Booked couple spa for my mum and aunt, this trip I did not enjoy any massages cos wasn't feeling up to it. Sigh...

We went for seafood dinner at the nearby Bali Hai seafood restaurant. Food was fresh and good like the last two times we went and I had my favourite belinbing juice. Sourish sweet, though it looks toxic green. We spent SGD200+ but also because we had lobster, and also I was super greedy (feeling better with the stronger med) and over ordered for 4 adults and 2 kids (2 veg, 1 fish, bamboo clams, fried lala, 2 crabs cooked in butter and black pepper, fried noodles, 1 lobster, sashimi style n lobster miso soup). We ended up tapowing the butter crab, and fried noodles for supper. ;)

We had an interesting stir fried vegetable that we have not seen before in Singapore. Looks a bit like super fat dou miao. And I was curious of the taste so even though we already ordered fried spinach, I added this veg. No regrets, we loved it so much that especially went to the market to search for it the next day during our 1 day tour.

Passed by Gurney Paragon, a condo cum shopping mall on our stroll back to our hotel. There was a nice colourful lighted water fountain and the gals enjoyed the light show.



Day 3
I booked a private day tour with http://rasamalaysia.com/penang-private-tour-and-culinary-tour/ for all of us and the guide picked us up in his mini van in the morning. We went on their culinary tour in 2009 when I was pregnant with Raelynn and it was a good experience esp the Penang laksa at Air Hitam was unforgetable. This time, since my mum and aunt have not really toured Penang before, we asked to go to the local market, taste local hawker fare, buy 'tao sa piah' from Him Heong, go to Batu Ferringhi beach and visit butterfly farm and fruit farm.


We were so happy shopping at the local market, bought dresses for the girls at RM10. Nice ones that costs double in Singapore, while my mum and aunt happily bought veg to be brought back to Sg the next day. End up, we were a bit late departing for Batu Ferringhi beach. The guide brought us to Hard Rock Hotel cos they have a private beach. RA took a horse ride with me while RL was happily picking seashells with hubby. We took a photo together with the horse, but RL is freaked out when the horse started to move. :P Then I went to Hard rock shop cos I wanted to buy a souvenir Tee. Initially wanted to buy for the gals too but prices were too steep. Definitely chop carrot type so I only bought one for myself.

About 1 hr later, we went to the fruit farm. Actually, the guide tried to persuade me not to go to the fruit farm cos he feels tickets are overpriced. But my mum and aunt are fans of fruit farms so I decided to just go ahead. By the time, we reached the fruit farm (it's at the other end of the island), the guide told us we cannot reach HIm Heong by 3pm to collect my preordered tau sa piah. So, we called and pushed back to 5pm collection instead. The fruit farm tour was ok, don't think my mum and aunt enjoyed as much cos it was in English as there were quite a few caucasians who joined the tour. But the gals had fun trying out the different fruits and it was the first time all of us saw a dragonfruit tree. We also had a fruit buffet at the end of the tour and that ended up as our lunch cos we were so rushed for time so no time to stop for lunch. RaeAnne even planted two longan seeds near the buffet area and we said one day we will revisit the farm and see if her longan trees have grown. ;)


After the fruit farm, we went to the butterfly farm. The gals enjoyed this most of all. They were awed by the 'up close' encounter with the many different types of butterflies and colourful caterpillars and it was an air conditioned enclosure so very comfortable to walk around. There were short 5-10 mins animated clips airing at the mini theatrette. We watched one on ants and one on snails and the gals refused to budge, had to force them to leave.

Then, we went to the reptiles n insects live exhibits area and the gals were not afraid of the creepy crawlies at all, unlike Mummy. ;P After that, we walked through the souvenir shops, spent too much at the handicrafts shop for some wood carvings cos we didn't realise there is another 'real' souvenir shop further down. Duh...

By the time, we finished with the butterfly farm, it was almost 5pm. Confirmed not enough time to collect my tau sah piah. And the guide informed me that Air Hitam penang laksa closed for the day liao. boo hoo hoo.

On our way back to Gurney drive, we passed by a durian roadside stall. The guide told us it is much cheaper to eat durians at the hillside compared to the city area so we decided to try it. We ordered just one durian and it was huge, the 4 adults had problems finishing it. Forgot the price though. :P

By the time, we reached our hotel, it was 7pm. We were debating whether to go out and eat but in the end, decided to order room service so that we have time to shower and pack our luggage for our morning flight the next day. We ordered Nasi Briyani, spagetti, Seafood hor fun. It costs about RM90.

Day 4
The guide sent us to the airport for RM60 but he detoured to Him Heong for us to get our tau sa piah. We ended up with two boxes of them, 1 big and 1 small. It was raining by the time we reached airport, and after that it was raining so heavily that the flight was delayed by 1 hr. On our return trip, we exceeded luggage weight limit (I bought 25kg). So in the end, we had to rearrange the luggage and we decided to check in the big box of tau sa piah to max our luggage allowance and hand carry the smaller box. Wrong decision cos in the end, half of the tau sa piah were crushed during transit. Morale of the story, buy only enough for handcarry, don't be greedy. :P

Celebrating Raelynn's 3rd birthday in school

Raelynn turns 3 yrs old this Sunday. Thurs is their school concert and Friday, CC is closed. So, we decided to celebrate her birthday early today on 28 Nov 12. Hubby was on reservist but managed to get early release today so we went over to the cc at 3.30pm. :) She chose the theme of Madagascar 3, her favourite movie (she didn't like Ice Age 4) so I bought partyware from Partycity and ordered the Madagascar cake from Prima Deli. She chose the cake design herself too. Teacher Angela said she told them that her cake is Madagascar, when she asked her in the morning. But she didn't believe her. She even insisted this morning to bring her favourite white 猫猫裙 (she likes it because of the sparkly design in front). haha. We had RL's PTC last Sat, and she is 91cm and 11kg. Still featherweight like RaeAnne... :P We bought her a bicycle a few weeks ago and she could ride on 4 wheels. Hope they can learn to ride on 2 wheels soon so that we can all go out in bicycles.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

First comic by RA, First stick figure by RL

RA drew her first comic yesterday. 龟兔赛跑,haha. Can tell that hubby is secretly happy with his daughter's first comic. haha. I asked her is it because teacher teach her to draw or did the teacher read her this story yesterday, that's why she drew this. But she said no, she drew it from memory.

I am secretly relieved too cos I nearly fail art in my school days. If at least got 1 kid likes drawing and comics like hb, I won't feel guilty. And the fact that she can remember the illustrations of the book shows that, at least never waste my efforts to read them story books at bedtime no matter how tired I am... Hubby asked her why never colour everything, she said because she does not have enough time... haha.

RA showed me this picture, she draw the purple stick figures with the crayola paint brushes. Was about to throw it away (cos looked quite messy). Then she said, Mei Mei drew this one. Which one? The pink one!

Took a second look, wa... finally RL can draw something that resembles a face instead of just scribbles. She used to scribble or doodle and tell me that it's a boat or an aeroplane but it looks nothing like it. She is turning 3 yrs old this Sunday and looks like she has finally progressed to draw her first stick figure though it looks like an alien head still. But at least it's something recognisable. Haha.

Jia you! Raelynn! :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Piano lessons

It has been 1 yr and 10 months since RA started Yamaha's music lessons in Jan 2011. From music wonderland to now Yamaha Junior Music course, she has made some progress. She is finally learning to play with two hands. But I have to bribe and nag to get her to practise all the time.

Her definition of practice means she has tried it once or at most twice at home. Of course, it's not enough, because the music teacher said we should aim to make the child practise 3 times a week. But only as long as their interest lasts for that session. But for the same song, I can make her practise more than 5 times in a row, and she is still not certain which keys to play. Today teach, 2 days later she'll forget. End up I always make her practise for the last time on Sat morning just before her music class. It doesn't help that I don't have any music background, cos I am at the same page as her, and sometimes I teach her the wrong things. :P

Now, I am trying out a new way to motivate her to practise her piano. Since she loves me to take her photos and videos, I will do video recordings of her practice and let her see for herself how 'well' she plays, which are the parts which she falters, and hope this will motivate her to play better. :)

Video clip

Swimming again....

We started RaeAnne on swimming lessons again on Sunday mornings last month after a 6 months hiatus after bumping into her class mate, Valerie's mummy in August. Thanks to her recommendation, we started her with Coach Joseph. Joseph kindly waived the fees for Sept when he saw that RA has a fear of the learner's pool and has extreme separation anxiety. She developed that fear after her 2nd swim coach accidentally let her jump into the deeper end of the learner's pool. She freaked out cos she could not reach the bottom of the pool.

After almost two months of hearing her whining 'Mummy, mummy', I finally saw some progress yesterday cos she was able to move off with a float and then without the float in less than 10 mins. Previously, she was just walking (yes walking) from one end of the pool to the other at the shallow end, and putting her head down (up to her ears sometimes). Swimming video clip

When I see her shiver in the cold sitting at the pool edge while the other 9 kids swim with a float, I get demoralised esp cos she has to wait so long for her turn and she doesn't do much during her turn. Felt like pulling her out but I told myself to persevere esp since the coach is already so nice to waive off her Sept fees. Sooner or later, she will overcome her fear and warm up to the coach. Even the coach was relieved, he had to console her a few times and get her to stop crying esp the last two weeks cos I did not go into the pool with her.

Joseph told me before that it's not that RA doesn't know. She knows, and it is not that she doesn't like to swim, it's just that she is not used to him so always wants Mummy. He told RaeAnne before 'If you are happy, I am also happy.' Very true, no point forcing if the kid is not enjoying. When we took a video of RA swimming, she was very proud of herself. Glad to see her gaining confidence.

I don't want the gals to be totally lacking in sports since we don't exercise with them at all. I am not trying to make her a competitive swimmer, as long as she has some survival skills and can have fun in the swimming pool, I am happy. In primary school, there will be group swimming lessons. And I will send her as well, but if she knows how to swim a little, I don't have to be worried about her. :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Buttons

Raelynn has been getting more independent and recently she has always been saying that she wants to dress herself. Last Monday, she finally managed to button the her pinafore straps herself. She was very happy. And kept telling 'Mummy, 你看,我会button了。' Of course, the buttons are much bigger than those on her shirt, and she still can't button her own shirt but at least it's a minor accomplishment for her. Jia you, Mei Mei! ;)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Wedding photo :)

RaeAnne drew this for me today. I asked what it is. She said "I drew Daddy and Mummy 'Dang Dang Dang Dang' photo aka wedding photo. See, holding hands and a heart shape behind. The heart shape got smiley face." True enough, can see the semblance. She must have recreated this after seeing my wedding album a few times. Wonder why she drew Daddy with ye ye's hairstyle. I asked her and she said she don't know how to draw Daddy's hair. Haha.
RaeAnne really loves to draw and she brings home from CC 1-2 drawings everyday. Some of them are really not bad. But unfortunately, I don't have the time and lazy to scan and archive everyday so I keep the nicer ones in a art folder. Raelynn likes to imitate her sister and draw too but so far, she can only try to trace her hand. ;)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

National Day celebration at ECP

Decided to bring the gals to a picnic since I woke up very early due to my night cough. Prepared my newly created baby octopus, crabstick japanese salad, baked cod fish fingers and the usual fishball, sausage skewers that RaeAnne loves and a flask of hot milo. This time, I used the taiwanese pork sausages for variety. By the time, I prepared all the food, it was 9am but hubby, and the gals were still sleeping. They took their own sweet time to wake up and get ready so it was 1020am when we finally left the house. So much for trying an early start so that we can have a cool morning picnic. Hmpff!
When we reach ECP, most of the good spots were taken. but we found a partially shaded area with no red ants and the gals got started on the food immediately. Mei Mei loves the baby octopus and fish fingers while RA is contented with her fish ball and sausage skewers. She keeps trying to pick out the cucumber though. After tucking into some food, RA went off to build sand castles, the sun was hot by then as it was almost midday. i tried to help her but my sand castles keep collapsing. Arrowed the task to hubby instead and he did a much better job than me. haha. After that, I tried to take a nap inside the tent cos I was drowsy from my morning cough syrup. But it was too hot to sleep as the sun was shining through the top and window of the tent by then. So, we decided to pack up around 1pm and we went to rent a quad cycle. Always see small groups of people on the quad bike, it looks fun but we have not tried before. It's not cheap, $28 for 1 hr. Progress was slow and both hubby and me need to pedal quite hard but at least the gals were entertained. Maybe next time, we can get 2 bikes with child seats, progress will be faster and price lower too.
We left ECP around 215pm and finished the remaining picnic food in the car. The gals were hot and sticky so had to shower them. By the time, they took their afternoon naps, it was already close to 4pm. The whole family knocked out till 6+pm. Then hubby went to tapow dinner and we watched the NDP together. Really glad to see LKY cos heard some rumours of him recently. At 8pm, we went up to the 16th floor of our block to see the fireworks but it was really small. I think next year, I should book a hotel room and get a good view of the fireworks since the gals are older. Maybe in 2014, when RA is 6.5 years old and RL is 4.5 years old, I can consider bringing the girls to NDP provided we get tickets through ballot of course. ;)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Happy Birthday to Mummy Piggy!

An hour before mid night. Happy birthday Mummy Piggy. Hope you hv a happy birthday with the nice nice fur-ly gifts despite all that has happened. Stay youthful! :)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Little baker at work :)

Shared 4 sesions of Chefs at work sessions at Brillionaire Kids at Serangoon Nex with my cousin, Shirley. Wanted RA to have some fun learning to bake since she loves to cook but mummy can't bake. Even if I can, don't think I want to deal with the mess. Too dangerous to let her handle stove or fire at 4.5 years old but baking is fine since all the work is done beforehand and heat applied only at the end and there is no open fire.

Today is the first session - Cookies and Cream cupcakes. She is a bit shy but she got round to doing the preparations, stirring and mixing easily. Creaming is quite hard for her cos need a lot of arm strength to blend the butter with the sugar so the instructors helped out. When there were a few kids who were just observing the sessions crowding round her, I could tell she was overwhelmed. Unfortunately, she sat at the corner closest to the entrance so no one else had observers except her. A few times, she did ask me to join her even though I am standing just in front of the preparation table. She asked me to squeeze the icing for her twice but I told her no other Mummy or Daddy is doing it so I will leave it to the teachers.

After the 1 hr session, I asked her if it is fun and if she wants to come again and she said yes. So, I registered for weekly sessions for Gem Tarts, Apple Pie and Strawberry shortcake muffins. Thought it's better to keep the momentum going, if not, she may get shy all over again.

She ate a cupcake immediately but ate most of the icing leaving behind the cupcake. I have not tasted yet. Will try it out and see if it's any good. ;)

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Christmas comes early...

RaeAnne's favourite season is Christmas because she remembered it was a day with lots of presents under the Xmas tree and we had a Xmas party at home with my cousins last year. So, I am not surprised that she drew this at CC on Thursday - Xmas with falling snow, snowman, Christmas tree, I can almost hear 'Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.' :)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

ILs support

Finally told MIL on Fri that I will be starting to work full time again, going to try contract teaching and start date is 30 July. She is quite happy when I told her that I managed to appeal to get into Poi Ching. Told her that I will try and ask for pm session but if I did not succeed, will need her to come over around 645am to watch the kids after I leave the house. She said ok but suggested that we leave the kids over for the nights instead. I asked her wouldn't she and FIl be very tired if we leave both kids there for the night? She said it's ok since morning time they go cc then whole day not in so they can still rest.

Hubby is thrilled to have the chance of being weekend parents but I am not very keen. Duh, the point of me working full time instead of real estate agent is not to spend even less time with my kids mah. But let's see how I can cope with my marking workload after I start working first. Maybe once in a while, it will be nice to leave them at ILs place if I am rushing marking or if hb and I want to catch a late night movie. haha.

Sat pm, I had to work, brought an old client to view showflat at Parc Olympia, a recently launched condo. She was looking for low psf condo in the east and Parc Olympia was the cheapest I could find for her. We were lucky to get the staff price for this particular unit and they only paid $840k for 3br, 1163sf. Very happy for them.

But while I was working, the gals didn't nap at ILs place until 430pm. At 9+pm, when we went over after our dinner, ILs haven't even had dinner yet. Faint! Today is sunday so we brought the gals swimming in the morning since RA requested and we wanted to tire them out. But RL didn't nap at all at ILs place though both me and FIl took turns to coax her to sleep since 1pm. RA napped at 245pm. As expected, RL was very grouchy on my way to my mum's place. But going to the playground at my mum's blk cheered her up. After we came home, both gals ko at 1030pm. Phew! 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Sticky Mei Mei

Raelynn has been rather sticky this week, even when she is received by her favourite CC teacher, Teacher Angela, in the morning when I drop her off, she will still cry cry for Mummy. Not just fake cry, until I am walking back to the entrance, can still hear her crying. It has not been like this for a long time. Usually RA is the manja one. Duh...

Monday, July 16, 2012

A new path.... Contract teaching

Today is a happy day. A few months ago, I applied to be a teacher (Chinese) with my partner's Quinnie's encouragement. She was an ex teacher before coming to the real estate business. Seeing my dilemma juggling work and quality time with the gals on the weekends and hubby's busy teaching schedule, she told me I should try and become a teacher too. I told her I'm keen to teach if it's primary school Chinese and she thinks I will have a good chance. So, in the wee hours of the morning in April, I sent in my online application.

After I told hubby, he asked me '你为什么这么 冲动?' My bro asked me '你为什么这么想不开?' Duh, the two teachers closest to me are not supportive lor. But yes, I do understand where they are coming from cos teaching is a very tough job, long hours, high stress and still must bring work home to mark. Working part time in real estate was rewarding (not monetary but the satisfaction I get when I help clients get their dream home), and many of my clients have become my friends.

But the main problem is that my working hours clashes with hb and the gals' leisure time. It gets worse now that RA is dropping naps over the weekends cos once we leave both gals at ILs place when I need to work, ILs will complain that both of them didn't nap. Most of the time, cos RA was not sleepy so she was disturbing Mei Mei. I feel bad 'stoning' at home during the weekday while sending both gals to full day cc, then when they get home or when they are free on weekends, I got to work.

Anyway, I was lucky that MOE shortlisted me for interview and after the interview in May, I waited 5 weeks before getting a offer in end June for contract teaching for primary Chinese. I waited so long that I seriously thought it was gone case by then cos no news from MOE means bad news.

Haha, after getting the offer, I went for appt briefing to sign the contract. Two days later, went for medical check at Raffles Hosp and photoshoot for the PS card.Then, I appealed to both Poi Ching School principal and MOE deployment unit to send to me to Poi Ching because I have logistic issues with the two gals, I have no maid and I need to send my gals to CC in the morning which only opens at 7am earliest and my hb is also a teacher teaching at Marine parade so no one else can do the morning ferryimg. Also I have already registered for PV for Poi Ching as I want to enrol my gals in the nearest primary school to my house and the only school within 1 km. If I posted to other schools, I can't do PV at Poi Ching anymore and RaeAnne doesn't have any nearby primary school within walking distance to go to.

Thankfully, my wish came true! Today, I received the email from MOE that I will be posted to Poi Ching Primary and assuming duty on 30 July. :)

I know I got lots to learn cos I hardly taught except a brief relief teaching experience in Poi Ching in 2009. I know I will be very busy with marking and school work in future. But I hope this will be better for my family in the long term. At least the family finances will be better and we will have synchronised holidays and hopefully I can coach RaeAnne better in Higher Chinese in future if she gets into Poi Ching Primary in 2015. :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Parent Teachers Conference (PTC) and afterthoughts

This is a backdated post cos RL's PTC was on 26 May before we went to Taiwan and RA was on 12 June after we came back from Taiwan.

Raelynn's PTC didn't go so well cos Wang Laoshi said she has short attention span. 上课, 没有听课, 只顾着玩她的裙子. 叫她的名字,旗庭,旗庭... 她也不知道. When the teacher asks her to do colouring, she will pick a colour pencil, colour a corner here, then take another colour pencil and colour another corner, and repeat until she has a few parts coloured, she will be happy and stop. Wang Laoshi said she is very different from RaeAnne (whom she also taught) who paid attention in class and consciously try to colour within the lines very nicely.

I really wanted to dig a hole and hide inside then, so embarrassed. But luckily, I redeemed myself and Raelynn cos I asked Wang Laoshi if she was as bad compared to the other year end babies. Wang Laoshi didn't know RL is a Dec baby because she is half a head taller than the other year-end-born classmates. After I pointed out to her, she said then she's better cos at least she can answer when Wang laoshi asks her a question (in Mandarin), some of her peers cannot answer yet. RL's form teacher Teacher Jean is new so she said she still needs more time to observe RL.

I am guilty of not doing anything for RL's studies cos I still treat her as my baby since she is the youngest in the family. I am not keen for her to grow up so fast too. So, as long as the teacher said she is better than her peers, I will leave her be. After all, she has an elder sister to emulate so I don't think she will take that long to catch up. :P

RaeAnne's PTC was the one we looked forward to cos we wanted some advice from the teachers. We find her very impatient (always shouting and raising her voice), emotional and bad tempered and always fighting with Mei Mei. Yang Laoshi (her form teacher) and Teacher Samantha (English and Maths) said RaeAnne is a good student. Never gave them any trouble just that she is too quiet. Told the teachers that she talks a lot at home but she is bad tempered. Asked the teachers if she is like that in school and the teachers said not at all, she is well behaved and gets along well with her friends so they are surprised to hear this from us.

That's reassuring cos it shows that she knows that in public social settings, she should behave herself. At least we won't be getting complain calls from her teachers. As for her tantrums, the teachers advised us to be more indirect and not to hurt her ego when she does something wrong cos she has a strong personality. Encourage her that she can do something better if she does it another way but don't say that she is wrong.

Anyway, my conclusion is that RA is usually at her best behaviour when Mei Mei is not around so she is just trying to fight for attention and love with Mei mei. She always wants us to treat them fairly and even for us to love her more so I guess she is insecure. Think we should try and bring her out on solo dates with us so that she can feel our love without Mei Mei around to compete with her.

Monday, June 18, 2012

18 June 2012

It's been 9 long years since hb and I first became an item. And I almost forgot about our dating anniversary date. I slept at 3am last night and crashed in the morning till afternoon 3pm. No thanks to RA who was sleeping and whining the whole time last night even when I let her sleep on my bed after she came into my room. The gals already slept late close to midnight cos they had late afternoon naps at ILs place.

Anyway, we didn't celebrate the day at all. Initially, wanted to bring the gals to watch Madagascar 3 but that plan was aborted cos they were more keen to go to Uncle Ringo rides next to Tampines Mall. But at least the gals had fun. Hope we can make it up for it next yr, when it's our 10th yr together. :P

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to hubby! :)

Today was a hectic day so didn't have time to celebrate with hb though I did get him a gift yesterday and RA drew him a beautiful card.

In the morning, we went to Compass Point for late brunch at Burger King then collected the Father's Day cake for FIL. Then we went to ILs house to celebrate with him. RA was excited and keen to blow the candle but RL didn't. RA ate quite a bit of cake but RL refused to have a single bite. Strange that this gal doesn't like cake. Thought most kids do. She loves sweets and chocolate though. :P

Around 245pm, Hb went to China Square Central to 'beow' toys but I was tired. Supposed to go back and nap but I ended up tidying up the mess created by the gals for the past 2 weeks which got worse after our Taiwan trip cos there was so much loose barang barang lying around.

Hb helped to get the Boon Tong Kee chicken from Macpherson Road cos I wanted to go to the temple to pray to my dad. This was my first Father's Day and it feels weird not spending it with him. He always liked Boon Tong Kee chicken. Spent some time 'talking' to him and updating him about our lives. Hope he can really hear me and that he's at peace.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Taiwan 8D7N Family Funtasia

This is going to be a very short post (by my standards). We went to Taiwan with the kids, my mum, mil and small aunt from 2-9 June. 7 people in total. We joined the goup tour by Chan Bros. There were 14 adults and 6 kids in this tour.

We went to Taipei, Jiaoxi, Yilan, Jiufen, Nantou, Sun Moon Lake, Chiayi, Tai chong, before returning to Taipei. The first few days were rainy so it was a bit difficult to move around esp with 2 young kids who dun like raincoats but they were too heavy to carry. The next few days were better but super sunny. As hot as Singapore. In fact, we perspired as if we were in Sg too. :P

What the kids enjoyed: the doctor fish feeding at Spa resort (though RaeAnne kept asking why the fish didn't want to bite her feet. She didn't know it was a compliment paid by the fish cos it meant that her skin is so smooth that the fish had no 死皮 to nibble on),  bubble baths at hotel room bathtubs (only when avail) as usual! The carousel and other kiddy rides at 九族文化村 esp when it's free, no queues so they can go as many rounds as they like. They also like the animals at Leofoo resort hotel but since they were too far for them to touch, they were not especially wowed.

What I enjoyed, the food! Especially the 卤肉饭and醉鸡at 张记 in 九份. And the white bittergourd juice. The scenery at Sun Moon Lake was very nice too. Couldn't wake up for the sunrise though I think it would have been beautiful.

As for the old folks, I'm not really sure what they esp like. Keke. But hope they enjoyed the trip. Dun think we will be going on such big group tours in future, cost being one of the major reasons. ;P

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Clearing bb stuff

Finally decide to sell off some bb stuff yesterday esp the bigger, bulkier items. Posted at SMH WTS thread and today, already sold off the Maxi Cosi car seat, FP Laugh & Learn Home, FP BB Grand Piano. Really felt 'bu she de' to let go of these memories but the house is really too messy and I can't keep waiting for something that may not happen. Time to move on. :P

P.S. 17 July, a day of reckoning. A day to regret my decision. Duh...

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mother's Day Stayacation at Resorts World

Decided to make use of the $588 Wow package and booked a 3D2N stayacation at Festive Hotel again to celebrate Mother's Day with MIL. Also because I promised RaeAnne for the longest time that I will bring her to Universal Studio again. Fri and Sat are already full so we checked in on Sunday, let the kids ponteng 2 days of school.

Day 1
We went for lunch at China square central and I brought the gals and MIL for a mani and pedi using my package. Think it's the first time MIL is trying it. We had to queue to check in though it was already 315pm by the time we reached Festive Hotel. Hubby bought me a SKII gift at the cosmetic shop next door. He wanted to give it to me when MIL was not around but RA couldn't wait. Duh.. A bit paiseh lor cos like the son never buy anything for own mother like that. Mental note to self: must ask hubby to buy a cake for MIL.

I bought a groupon for $88 back scrub, mask and 60 mins massage last week at the hotel spa for $88. Booked the spa treatment from 4-6pm, Mother's Day gift for self. Talk about killing many birds with one stone man. hehe. Had our Mother's Day dinner at Putien at 630pm immediately after my spa treatment. Luckily I booked a table last Sunday, saw a few groups of people waiting for tables cos the restaurant was fully booked esp the bigger round tables. Even though I did book a table, we had to vacate the table at 8pm. Luckily for us, we needed early dinner for the kids so it was no issue. The Mother's Day set dinner at $128 was quite filling and we had to tapao the fried bee hoon and the 'or nee'. Best of all, it came with a free photo and a free pink carnation for MIL. Skipped the cake this year though cos we were too stuffed. Reminded hubby to buy MIL a gift instead.

Day 2
MIL went to the casino while we brought the kids to Universal Studio (2 adults tickets prices included in this Wow package). All of us woke up late at almost 10am incl MIL, think the blackout curtains in the hotel room were really superb!

First thing we did when we went inside USS to buy RA a pair of shoes/slippers cos she brought her brand new patent red lace flats that we bought from Colettee then complained that her feet after half a day. Bought a crystal hp accessory for MIL with a lucky 招财猫 charm. I initially wanted to get the 发 mahjong tile charm but hubby think it's too 俗气. He was shocked that this little thing costs almost $50 bucks, think he really out of the market for ladies accessories. haha. It was almost 11am by the time we walked to the main theme park area so it was getting a bit warm. Surprisingly, the first thing RA asked for the Shrek Movie (4d animation), not any of the rides. :P Oh well, since she liked it so much, we went there first. At least, this time, Raelynn got to put on the 3d glasses and sit on the real 'moving' seat, not the stationary one which I had to share with her last yr.

She can't see very well cos she is too short and there aren't any booster seats. She was a bit unnerved when the seat started shaking and she got wet from the Donkey's sneeze and her legs touched by the 'spiders' though. So halfway through I carried her and let her sit on my lap. She liked the show much better after that. :)

Next, RA wanted to go on the kiddy dragon roller coaster again so I asked hubby to bring her since I already went last year. RL hasn't reached the minimum ht so I brought her for the carousel. This time, she is ok to ride it on her own after I buckled her safety belt. As we walked back to meet hubby, we caught sight of Puss in Boots posing for pics so I quickly joined the queue cos RL did not have her photo taken with Puss last yr and I know her favourite animal is 猫猫. She was a bit scared when Puss knelt down to hug her though. haha.

Then we met up with RA and hubby for lunch and brought the gals to the carousel ride again since RA still wanted to go. Next, it was off to Jurassic Park, hubby's favourite. Hubby wanted to go for the Rapids Adventure ride but he changed his mind after he realised we will all get wet. So, we queued for almost 30 mins for the flying dinosaur ride. Something like Flying Dumbo at Disneyland so think the kids will enjoy the ride. Wished I had the Universal Express pass then cos it was so hot at 2pm then and pp kept 'cutting' in at the Express lane. I was really fascinated by the Canopy flyer ride but was put off by the 45 mins wait and the long snaking queue. Didn't realise that even it's a Monday, we got to wait so long. I was crazy enough to consider the Universal express pass so I asked abt it at the souvenir shop.

WA, I was shocked! It was $30 per pax (no matter adult or child) for the universal express pass, that's $120 for a family of 4 and only to 'cut queue' legitimately. The full ticket price for adult is only $65. Really 杀人放火 lor! There was another 3d2n package that included Universal express pass. If I ever come back for another stayacation over weekend or PH, must go for that package or else really must wait like crazy. :PAnyway, so no choice got to give up on my Canopy flyer ride, next time then go bah. We went to take a photo with the Dino cos I am a sucker for family pics with all of us in it so no choice got to pay 12 bucks for it. :P

The gals were tired by then esp RA so we went back to the hotel around 3pm. MIL was already back. But cheh, after a quick shower, both of them are refreshed and running around. Refused to nap. So, we went to the cafe downstairs and had cake, club sandwiches, coffee and ice cream. After that, brought the gals to the pool and waterplay area since we didn't have time to go last yr. They enjoyed themselves and made friends with a little bb gal in her float.

Wanted to order room service since all of us showered after going to the pool, so I wasn't keen to perspire again. But the room service prices were crazy. I paid $12 for the club sandwich at the cafe in the afternoon but the room service menu price was $22! $10 just for the restaurant to bring it up to my room. Cannot take it. So, we went to the mall and tapow food from Ruyi instead. The gals loved the卤肉饭which was supposed to be my dinner instead of their own wanton mee. Looking forward to the Taiwan 卤肉饭 at 九份 for our June holiday, one of the best hubby and I tasted. ;) Poor mei mei was holding a pair of chopsticks while climbing down from the loft bed. MIL was watching her but not fast enough to catch her and she fell midway but luckily she landed on her bum and the whole room is carpeted so impact not as great.
The gals knocked out at 1030pm, only slightly earlier even though they had no nap.

Day 3
Didn't know what to do today and hubby wanted to wait for MIL to come back so we wasted some time in the hotel room. MIL had gone back to the casino to recoup her losses at 8am. RA wanted to take the cable car ride but hubby was afraid it will be too late for us to check out by then since the 2 way ride takes about 30 mins. MIL came back close to 11am, she managed to recoup her losses. Yeah! Hope the 招财猫 was her good luck charm.

Managed to postpone check out to 1pm so we went to Imbiah lookout's Cable Car station and bought the family package $42 for 2 adults and 1 child tic (kids below 3 ride free). Took a family pic again. keke. This one costs $20, more exp than USS. There was a nicer photo of me and RA but hubby chose this one instead cos RL looks good. Boo hoo. Knew he was too practical to get both photos for $25. :( RA wanted to buy a name keychain and was quite upset when I refused to buy a "FIONA" keychain for her cos we can't find her name. She settled for a little notebook keychain instead. After we came back, quickly showered the kids and we checked out at 115pm.

Went to Malaysian Food street for lunch after depositing our luggage and Mei Mei KO after just a few mouthfuls of porridge. :PThen RA KO in the car but RL woke up as we put her into her car seat. Was very tired myself so was secretly pleased when RA said she wanted to follow Nai Nai when we reached MIL house. Managed to nap for 1 hr at least. keke.

In the end, I paid $150 and signed up for RWS privileges (non gambling privilege card) so I had another 2 adults tickets for USS valid for 1 yr. Figured it should be worth it since the kids love USS, MIL loves casino and there is free hotel room upgrade, free parking, etc. We will be back again, hopefully next time, we get to stay at a different hotel. :)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

RA's hedgehog

Just found this picture which RA drew beginning of the week. I like her little hedgehog on the upper left most of all cos it's a new animal that she learnt to draw. I don't know who she learnt from though. :)

Day and night by RA

RaeAnne drew this last week but I was too busy to scan and save the drawings. What I liked is that she drew daytime on one side of the paper and night time on the other side. I think she drew Daddy much better this time cos he has short hair and a parting. Hubby shouldn't complain this time. But can tell she is still using her own kiddy logic cos the night picture with the moon has both rain and rainbow. haha.


RL is toilet trained! :)

Raelynn is toilet trained since last month. She will tell us when she needs to pee even after she has fallen asleep at night. So, she is off diapers even for nights so we save on diapers.

A good progress since we only told the teacher to start toilet training her on 9 April. Two reasons 1) she has already spent more than 3 mths at Elfa and I feel that she has adjusted to the cc routine. 2) My other selfish reason is that I don't want to lug diapers and use up precious luggage space for our Taiwan holiday in June.

Then she was diagnosed with HFMD on 17 April so she spent 11 days with MIL until the GP cleared her. After just 2 nights at MIL house, she told us she stopped peeing at night and will only pee in the morning. Even though she started toilet training later (>2 yrs 4 mths)  compared to RaeAnne, she mastered it in less than 2 weeks incl night peeing. Maybe being older and having an elder sibling to show her the way means she is more ready.

Once in a while, if she has a second round of milk at bedtime or if she is on medication, there are still 1-2 accidents. But I think I can live with that. Anyway, I still have 3 packs of huggies diaper pants left. Too many to keep for standby, might as well just sell it off. :P

Monday, April 30, 2012

"What happened to the monkey?"

Tonight, RL surprised me by saying the above sentence while playing at ILs place. "What happened to the monkey?" She said it a few times. She also sang Twinkle twinkle little star with perfect diction. A few months ago, she was still mumbling her words in her babyish voice.

My little baby has grown up by so much. I really feel 'bu she de', keke. ;P

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

RaeAnne's bicycle


RaeAnne drew this picture in class on the back of a 笔画 practise sheet, can still see the dots from the flip side. Thought she drew it quite well. She said 杨老师 taught her to draw bicycle today. She drew all of us in too.

She said the two girls with ribbons are her (taller) and Mei Mei (shorter one). I asked her why I have no ribbon, she said she forgot. When I asked her why, she said 因为你很少绑头发嘛. Asked her who is the person standing beside Mei Mei and she said Daddy. Daddy's reaction was 'Huh? Why am I the shortest one?' Told him at least your hair is the shortest so she did get something right. Asked her why all of us have no hands and she said because our hands are behind our back. hahaha.

Guess there is no logic in a kid's drawing. Just enjoy her 全家福 bah. :)

(L-R) RaeAnne, Mummy, RaeLynn and Daddy

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

HFMD :(

RL has been having a persistent low grade fever since Sunday night. She failed the temp check in school so yesterday and today, she did not go to school. Decided to bring her to see GP just in case it's something serious. End up GP diagnosed it as HFMD.

Very surprised cos the teachers, hubby and me have checked her mouth these 2 days but we did not see any ulcers. No spots on hands and feet either. She didn't have much appetite on Sunday according to hubby (I was working), but this morning she drank milk at 630am, ate some cornflakes and even a slice of plain bread before going to school so appetite is good. Also, her temp is from 37+ to 38.4. Not high temp like 39+ when RA got it.

But GP used the tongue depressant and showed me the cluster of small ulcers at the back of her throat. Some of the ulcers were a bit bloody. He confirmed HFMD so RL has MC till Sat. Will bring her to review on Sunday, dr said if ok then she can go back to school. Called to inform the CC teacher but she said there are no cases of HFMD in Elfa. Strange, don't know where RL got it from. :P

Gave her ibufen (dr said it will reduce the swelling and improve appetite), I left her at ILs cos I wanted to come back to wash bedsheets and disinfect the high contact bumper mats and toys. CC i/c called me at home and asked me to keep RA away from school as a precautionary measure. Brought RA to see GP as well, GP said she is ok and even wrote a letter to certify. Visited RL after that and ILs said she ate very well, slept well. Glad she seems to be having a mild case of the virus. Either that or because she has high tolerance of pain. But since RA is not infected yet, still have to separate the 2 gals so we left RL at ILs place for the night. If CC accepts dr's letter, I can put RA at CC and pop over to visit RL. Feel bad dumping her at ILs place when she is going to be down for some days.

Sidenote: We started toilet training RL last Monday. Asked the CC teachers to start while we continue over the weekend at home or ILs. This morning at 6+am, hubby said RL knocked on my bedroom dr and said, 'Mummy, I want to shh shh'. 'Mummy, I want to shh shh.' Too bad, I was too tired cos slept late after changing her poo stained diapers at 2+am so didn't hear her. Luckily, hubby brought her to pee. No wonder her diapers were clean at 8+am when I checked and brought her to toilet to pee again. Clever gal! :)

P.S. hubby said his colleague had HFMD and he had contact with him. Not sure if he brought the virus back cos he had sore throat last week. Hubby, me and RA all had HFMD before so not sure his symptoms were not obvious then unwittingly he spread to RL? Duh...

Monday, April 9, 2012

Picnic at East Coast


Asked RA what she wanted to do for Good Friday weekend cos I knew I had to work on Sat and Sun so wanted to compensate her. She said she wanted to go for a picnic. So I stayed up until 130am to prepare the sausage skewers and assemble the salad partially. Can only start at midnight after I put the gals to bed. Then woke up early and started preparing sandwiches, boiling fish balls, fish cakes, making a jug of honey water etc. Finished at 830am and we finally left the house at 910am to go to East Coast. Reached East Coast close to 10am, didn't know the entire Macdonalds builing is under renovation so we parked near Burger King instead.

Weather was good, cloudy without much sun. Spread out the food but the gals were only interested in fishballs and fishcakes and honey water. Duh. But luckily hubby and I were hungry cos we didn't have BF. RA wanted to build a sand castle but too bad I forgot to bring their pails and sand play toys. Too busy packing the food, haha. Mei Mei was initially apprehensive about touching the sand but they soon had fun scratching the sand with sticks. RaeAnne dug too deep and disturbed a red ants nest. Freaked me out to see so many ants at the gals feet, luckily I managed to pull them away and dust the few ants on their dresses away before they got bitten. :P

As the gals played at the beach, we noticed that the sky at the horizon getting darker and darker. Soon, dark clouds moved closer and we heard thunder. No time to waste so hubby quickly dismantled the tent then we kept the food etc. Left east coast at 11am, just 1 hr of play after 3 hrs of preparation. Hiaz.

Continued our picnic at home to finish up the leftover food. Still had enough to give some to my PT cleaner who was still busy ironing. haha.