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! :)

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Yamaha's Graduation Concerts

RaeAnne graduated from the Junior Music Class and Raelynn from the Music Wonderland course today. It was a logistic nightmare trying to attend both their concerts cos RA's class is 12-1pm and RL is 1215 - 1pm. Luckily, RL's teacher held a last minute 20 min rehearsal so we could watch most of RA's concert before hopping over to RL's.

RA is able to play tunes with both hands though her notes reading is still very poor as Yamaha emphasized a lot on listening and solfege. RL can't play anything yet since MW is more for her to learn music, movement and rhythm.

We have started private music lessons for RA in Nov and will be continuing with it since RA's class is not progressing onto next year. Most of her classmates are going to Primary One next year so most parents opt for private lessons to free up the weekends.

As for RL, we tried out 1 month of pte music lessons for her in Nov but her attention span is too short. Plus she only knows C, D, E. Not able to recognise all her alphabets yet. So I will take a break from music classes for now until she is ready for private lessons. Or if Mummy changes her mind and musters up enough courage next year to sit through another 2 years of JMC with her. Haha.

Video of RA playing Falling Leaves

Raelynn performing "Won't you like to come out and play?"

Raelynn performing "Do re mi fa man"

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Hello Kitty Star Cruise 8 - 11 Dec 2013

This is a backdated post cos I was so busy after my leave. Almost forgot the concept of taking leave for holidays and definitely forgot the feeling of having to clear backlog and emails after a holiday. Lol.

Anyway, the extended family of 8 (incl my mum, aunt, MIL and bro) took a cruise in December. Was planning for Australia initially but changed our minds cos my mum was worried of walking too much. Cruise seemed like a good idea since there was young and old travellers. I wanted to go to Royal Carribean Cruise since we already went to Star Cruise last Dec in 2012.

But when I heard that there was no chinese restaurants and the food spread was largely Italian with just some local dishes, I changed my mind. With 3 old folks in the cruise, it can be quite boring for them to eat bread and potatoes or pasta for 4d3n. Haha.
At least Star Cruise has a decent Chinese restaurant, I thought, better for their traditional taste buds.

When I booked the star cruise through 5 Stars, it was about $2500 for balcony cabin and about $1900 for the normal cabin. Not cheap but at least food and entertainment are inclusive so not much out of pocket. When I booked in July, there was no Hello Kitty Cruise. But in Nov, they announced Hello Kitty cruise and we were lucky that our cruise is one of the Hello Kitty cruise date. The gals are in for a treat! ;)

8 Dec
We went to Singapore Cruise Centre at Harbourfront around 1130am though check in time is 12noon. Last yr, we were faced with a crazy snaking queue when we reached Cruise Centre about 1-2 hrs after check in time. Balcony class priority was useless then cos everyone had to join the same queue. We were told by 5 stars that once we board the ship, we can have lunch. But in fact, 'tea' was served only from 130pm onwards at Mediterranean Buffet and from 2pm at Belle Vista Western Restaurant. It was mainly finger foods, pastries and curry chicken rice so my mum was not impressed. After that, we went back to our cabins to rest. RA woke up early so I brought her to the Charlie's childcare centre open house (only for 1 hour during whole cruise ie. 5pm to 6pm) to play at the mini indoor gym.

The magic show at night was by a different magician. There was less audience participation compared to last year's. So hb preferred last year's magician. :P

9 Dec
We decided not to disembark at Penang since we are going to Penang next June. In the morning, the gals had breakfast and photo taking with Hello Kitty and Friends. Then we went for a swim while the adults went to the casino or rested in the room. It got a bit boring by afternoon, I must admit so we roamed the ship looking for entertainment. Ended up going for karaoke with my bro and the old folks hidden inside the casino from 5-6pm leaving hb w the gals who were napping in the room.

Entertainment show tonight was Hello Kitty Karaoke show. Pity the old folks who were bored by this kiddy show but didn't want to break away from us. haha.

10 Dec
We disembarked after breakfast around 10am at Patong beach, Phuket and the 5 mins transfer by boat from our ship to the beach was free. We brought beach toys and let the gals spend time at the beach, then headed for lunch and some shopping. Went back to the ship just before 4pm. Time flew by. No time for a massage though they only costs SGD10. We did not get to go for Gala dinner as we tried booking it too late the night before. So, I used our dining credits and all of us ate at the Blue Lagoon café for local food. :(

Entertainment tonight was the "Somewhere in Time" Musical which the gals enjoyed a lot last year but performance this yr seemed a bit subdued with a smaller cast though the two leads were still as good at singing. The contortionist was very good too.

11 Dec
We had a leisurely day. The gals were already whining about not going home. Had to check out of our rooms by 5pm. So, we had an early dinner at Belle Vista. Our first western meal of this whole cruise which was good to me especially the braised lamb which was tender and juicy. Too bad we didn't eat here more often. :P

Monday, December 16, 2013

Happy 9th ROM anniversary!

长长久久,九九常常! ;)

Monday, December 2, 2013

Raelynn is 4 years old!!!

RL is finally 4 years old. She is 98cm tall and finally hit 15kg. She has been waiting for this day for months because she wants her birthday party goody bags. Haha. That's the difference about getting older. Last year, she was still a bit blur about her birthday.

This year, Mummy decided to do a bigger celebration since they will be graduating from ELFA soon. Next year is RA's last year and RL will be the year after.

The theme is Marie Cat since she likes cats and I got a customised Marie Cat cake from a home baker and hired a balloonist for 1 hr. All in, costs about $300. Luckily, I got the goody bag items cheap when we went to BKK in September. ;)We wanted to go out after celebrating her birthday at CC today. But it was raining and both RA and I are coughing so we went to see the doctor instead. Bought a skate scooter for RL during the March Isetan Private Sale so brought her down to skate scoot for a while. :)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Hari Raya Haji - SEA Aquarium

I had 2 adult tickets to SEA aquarium after signing up for RWS Invites earlier this year and I thought I had 1 more Adult and 1 more child tickets from Friso promotion too and they were expiring on 27 Oct so decided to bring MIL there with the gals since it was PH today.

It was a rainy morning, thunderstorm since early morning so by the time we reached USS it was already 1030am. Had some snacks at the Fish and crab shack while the gals enjoyed watching the Zheng Ho show again and again. RL was frightened by the roaring Pixiu dragon head initially though. haha.

As we walked in, RL was fascinated by the henna tattoo so she had a beautiful motif done on her left hand. That costs $8 but strangely RA didn't want one. The crowd was building up by the time she finished. Glad I had the RWS invites card to jump queue. But due to my booboo, the friso tickets had already been used on 16 June, hubby and RA had to go buy the tickets again before we can enter the aquarium.

It was our third time to SEA aquarium so the gals aren't exactly thrilled but they enjoyed looking at the big round column of circling fish, sea jellies, dolphins and touching the sea stars (not star fish as the staff corrected us sagely. "You don't call turtles turtle fish, do you?" Err.... turtles have 4 legs or flippers so of course they don't look like fish right?), and of course 'picnic' in front of the oceanarium pool.

RL was tired of walking rather early cos both she and RA insisted on wearing heels. Ended up carrying her very often at SEA aquarium. Note to self: must insist they wear comfortable walking shoes next time. We wanted to have high tea buffet at Starz restaurant but for some strange reason, it was not available. Only lunch buffet which ends at 2.30pm. It was already 2.10pm by then so it was pointless. Went to Coca restaurant instead since I had RWS invites rebates dollars to redeem.

The gals whined and fussed when we walked past the Hard Rock pool cos they wanted to play in the pool. Had to pacify them that we will come again. I have already booked Equarius hotel for end Nov for 3d2n staycation so that we can go to USS again before RL turns 4 years old. Admission is free for kids below 4 years old. Haha.

Legoland for the third time

It was a busy weekend for us. Last Sat afternoon after our PV duties, we joined our neighbours to go to LEGOLAND again. Glad to go again since we already signed up for the annual pass. As long as we go there twice, it will be worth it. It was all clear at Sg customs but JB's side we had to wait about 1 hour. Luckily, we had already fixed our car air con ($1500 flew away) so at least it was a cool n comfortable wait. RL ko before we reached SG customs so she had a nice 1 hr nap until we reached LEGOLAND.

This time, we went straight to Lego city as we didn't cover the last time we went. The gals tried the Junior Driving school car drive meant for 3-5 years old. They were quite bad cos they don't know how to straighten their wheels so they kept going around in circles. I think even the instructor gave up as they kept banging onto the curbs and getting stuck. Haha.

Then we went to watch the magic show before going for the big train ride. All 3 kids sit in 1 carriage so the adults got to relax and enjoy the ride. haha. RL really wanted to go to the slides at the Shipyard playground so I brought her there while Daddy accompanied RA and followed Lijia's family to the Fire engine station. After that, we queued up for the boat ride. RA was equally bad at steering the boat so we kept bumping onto the barricades as well. We even got sprayed with water by one of the 'ambush' spray jets. Daddy and RL gloated away cos they were in front of us and thus safe and dry. So mean. :/

After that, hubby tried his hands at the basketball game again but failed to win the blue, square angry bird that RA wanted. Think they set the standards higher since we last went in Dec 12 when he won 2 birds. We took a few rounds at the dizzying aeroplane ride cos RL really liked it.

Went for the 4d Chima show and joined Lijia's family there. Got sprayed by water again. Geesh... I should start wearing a poncho to LEGOLAND. But luckily the gals enjoyed it though RL's 3d goggles kept slipping off. We went to the Duplo playground again and the kids took the mini train ride themselves. RL sat in one carriage all by herself while RA shared one with Lijia cos all 3 kids only wanted the red carriages and there were only two red ones in the whole train.

Walked past the mini city, then a short stop at the gift shop before we went for dinner at Secret Recipe. The lamb shank was cold inside so I had to ask them to reheat. But other than that food was good. It was already 1015pm when we left and we were the last 4 cars remaining. Luckily, there were 2 security guards there but I wonder if we were making them work OT if they can only knock off after all cars leave. :P

Got Lijia's Daddy help to update our Garmin GPS so hopefully next time we can try going to LEGOLAND on our own and maybe we can visit the new LEGOLAND water park soon. ;)

PV duties at Poi Ching School

I just realised that I never blogged about this before. But I was accepted to be Poi Ching school's PV and started duties somewhere in August. I never thought I had to be PV but this year's Phase 2C was too competitive. 25 people were balloted out and they were all Singapore citizens staying within 1 km.

For the past years, SCs within 1 km had always been safe from balloting. Even the P told me that last year when I was still doing contract teaching at Poi Ching. Since I don't have a plan B (hb's alumni school Ngee Ann Pri was too far away), it was really important for me to be a PV to increase my chances. Luckily I had sent in my application early last year plus I was an ex staff.

We need to clock 60 hours. Most school require only 40 hrs so that is 50% more. But I heard St Hilda's require 80 hours and they also interview their PVs and select only a handful. So I am glad I am given the chance to be PV. My neighbour who realised too late how competitive this year's P1 registration would be, was not even accepted as PV cos the school said registration was already closed.

At first, I thought it would have been easy since I was a SAHM. What I didn't realise that I would take on a temp part time job in end July and this temp job is now converted to a contract position. So, I had to keep taking no pay leave to do my PV duties. But
I always thought PV duties are things like traffic marshall duties, clerical duties or even bringing kids on excursions. But surprisingly, the PV duties I encountered at the school were none of the above.

To those who are curious about what PVs do. Here's what I did so far:
1) Accompany P4 kids with their form teachers to pick rubbish from nearby park
2) Teacher's day celebration (lead the P1 kids in games in their classrooms) so that teachers can have their buffet lunch
3) Lantern Festival (help to sell tickets and school bears)
4) Monthly birthday celebration partie just last Sat (Games I/c)

Together, with hubby, we only clocked about 30 hours so far. Just hit our halfway milestone. Most of the 2008 PVs we spoke to already almost graduated cos they started way earlier. Stressed. Hope I can clock the 60 hrs soon so that I can qualify for phase 2B registration next year.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ballet : RAD or CSTD

Blur mummy never realised that there are two different ballet syllabus. I only realised when the Crestar counter staff told me RA will be having open house last Fri so that parents can decide whether to register them for ballet exam next April.

Apparently, there is RAD (annual exam every April) and CSTD (exam every April and Oct). All the mummies friends and my cousin, Shirley, whom I asked, have daughters taking the RAD ballet UK syllabus. None were taking CSTD, the Australian syllabus.

But RA and RL's teacher, Ms Qiu Li Tong at Crestar Tampines is teaching CSTD syllabus. Basically, RAD is more widely recognised and is more technical while CSTD emphasises more on performance. I did some research on my own too. There is more discussion at ksparents for those who are interested to know the difference.

So now, I got to decide if I want to switch from CSTD to RAD. I got both gals to do a trial at Sunday morning 1145am with Ms Joy Foo the RAD teacher as recommended by Valerie's mum (RA's cc classmate). RA was quite reluctant initially cos she wanted to stick to Ms Litong's class and she doesn't want to do exams. But I asked her to just try out once first. If she doesn't like it. I will just let her learn ballet for another year and forget about exams for now.

Ms Joy has a very big class of at least 20 kids, first with older gals (p3 or p4) as well as those 4-6 yrs old. But she will spilt up the groups and let the younger gals sit and watch the older gals. Then about a short while later, the older gals will exit and she will focus on the younger ones. When I peeped in, I saw my gals playing with big shiny pom pom balls and thought to myself, hey, that looks fun. How come I never saw RA doing that before. Valerie's mummy, told me that's because the pom pom balls are part of RAD syllabus. Valerie has been learning from Ms Joy Foo since she was 3 yrs old.

Ahh.... No wonder. We never knew what we were missing. haha.

Anyway, the magic of pom pom balls for just one 45 minutes lesson cannot be underestimated. After the class, I asked them if they enjoyed. And both did. I asked RA if she wants to go to Ms Joy Foo class. She said yes. I asked her if she wants to try the ballet exam and have 1 extra ballet practice per week and she also said yes.

I asked Ms Joy Foo and she is happy with both their performance. She said if I don't mind RL waiting one more year before she can take exams in 2015, both gals can be in the same class. Of course I didn't mind. I am glad that I can drop off both gals cos logistically it is easier than having back to back ballet lessons on Friday nights from 730 to 9pm. But I will be on my own to bring both gals on the bus since hb is not free on Sun mornings.

Since RA wants to do the pre primary ballet exam, we still need to send her on Fri evening 645pm for coaching class from Oct to March. But at least it will not finish as late at 9pm. So logistically it is better.

Since RA enjoys ballet for now, I will expose her to extra coaching ($600 for 6 mths, not cheap) and try the exam and see if she can take it. I really don't want to overload her after she starts primary 1 so I feel K2 is a better time to test water about taking ballet exams. If she loves ballet even more, will consider letting her continue with the yearly exam syllabus. But if she hates it, we can either drop ballet or just let her learn for leisure. Either way, it will give me a better idea how to maximise our limited enrichment budget.

Legoland again...

We finally drove to LEGOLAND in our own car last Sat. Must really thank our neighbours Lijia's parents for patiently showing us the way. Previously, we took the coach bus and hired our own van driver. Although the drive to Tuas is quite long, both gals napped in the car as we left Tampines around 2pm after their music classes. But we cleared both sides customs quite quickly, RA woke up at Tuas checkpoint and RL woke up at Malaysia checkpoint.

When we reached LEGOLAND, it was around 3+pm. There was hardly any queues so we went for the rides that we did not try previously. When we went in Dec last yr, we only tried the boat ride, the train and mini land cos the queues were too long.

This time, the first ride we tried was Technic twister ride (like those teacups). Only RA got to try it though. RL is only 96cm tall so she couldn't meet the height limit for quite a few rides. She did not meet the height limit of 110cm so she could not play the Technic twister so I accompanied her. Both gals wanted to play the Aqua zone waveracer ride but RL did not meet the 100cm height limit. By then, I bought them a single scoop of rainbow ice cream to cool off. So they were quite happy with their ice cream and did not feel disappointed.

Lijia and his Daddy went for the dragon roller coaster. No amount of persuasion could convince RA to try the junior roller coaster ride. So both of them ran to Forestman hideout, and enjoyed themselves at the multilevel playground. RL had a bit of abrasion on her thighs sliding down the metallic enclosed slide though. Next time, must remember to wear pants for her. We managed to watch one 4d movie on car racing though we missed Cheema cos there was a technical fault for the 515pm show. The air con was a welcome respite from the heat. We tried the Observation Tower ride this time too.

RL couldn't do the Kids Power station rope pulley ride either but RA enjoyed it doing it with Mummy, the slow n steady way and with Daddy, the fast and furious climb up. Both gals tried the Royal Joust ride, the beetle bounce, Lost kingdom laser gun game. Hubby and I even went for the Dinosaur island water slide ride. RA wanted to try the water slide ride too but failed the min 120cm, 6 yr old limit. She was very disappointed and sulked but I think it is too thrilling a ride for her. The height drop from 2-3 storeys was scary for me. RA even panicked on the gentle beetle bouncer so I think she could not have handled it.

We decided to upgrade to an Annual pass since we had already paid full price for our tickets RM140 for adults and RM110 for kids. Just needed to come twice and it will be worth it for the RM275 adult annual pass and RM210 kids pass. As long as Lijia's family is coming again, we can tag along. Haha.

We went for dinner with the other 3 families (Lijia, Benjamin and Shi Heng Kai, all from Elfa CC) at Absolute Thai at 8pm. Left LEGOLAND at 915pm and we were the last few cars there. Went to top up petrol at Shell station near checkpoint and reached home sweet home around 10+pm.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Couple trip to Bangkok

Went for a short 3d2n trip to BKK with hubby last Thurs. Actually it was more like 2 days cos we reached BKK on Thurs evening and flew back on Sat 4+pm. We almost didn't get to go cos RL started a low grade fever 37.7 on Sun night. I couldn't take leave due to a work event so hubby brought her to see the doctor. The GP for some reason suspected HFMD but there were no ulcers, just that her throat was red. We separated the gals on Mon and Tues and brought RL back on Wed night. But she still had fever on Wed early morning so we brought her to see the doctor again on Thurs morning after sending RA to school. Temp was still 37.7 but dr confirmed it was not HFMD so we decided to go on with our trip. If we cancel, we cannot claim anyway. Since it was a slight fever and not even HFMD.

We stayed at Novotel Platinum hotel, right next to Platinum Mall and with a linkway from the 6th floor hotel lobby to the mall. It was a very convenient location because we can upload our shopping loot at our hotel before heading out for dinner or elsewhere. But changing lifts at 6th floor to reach our hotel room was a bit inconvenient. The hotel toilet has not bathtub so the kids won't like it. I didn't like the shower stall had no door and there was an air con ventilation duct just above so there was cold air blowing at me as I was showering. Brr... Not suitable for kids.

We had a 4 hr couple massage at So Thai Spa, Bangkok. Had to take a taxi there. Taxi ride was about 20-30 mins. The spa was at a shophouse, it was a quiet set up. I could occasionally hear dogs barking but otherwise it was silent when I had my massage. The foot scrub, herbal ball and aromatherapy massage was relaxing, hb and I fell asleep at some parts. But I will not recommend to someone who really has bodyaches cos my masseur did not ease the knots on my shoulder even though I pointed the painful area. My masseur who was an older lady was also a bit rough and abrupt. Instead of lowering my limbs slowly after massaging it, she literally dropped it while holding on. Overall, the spa is ok if your hotel is nearby. But I will not especially take a cab to go to the spa again. :P Maybe, next time I will try Coran Spa or even the budget range Healthland.

We were out from morning for the two days and only came back at 11pm after the shops close (10pm BKK time). Really cheong for 2 days cos there were lots to buy and I was helping MIL and a friend find some stuff. I grabbed 2 pairs of slippers, 2 dresses, 1 pair of jeans and 1 pair of shorts for myself. And hb got 2 tees and 1 pair of jeans. The biggest winners were the gals cos we bought lots for them, from party favours to dresses, PJs to shoes, hair accessories and socks. We bought so much that I had to get a box from the party favours shop and ship the partyware back. We bought so much cos it was cheap. Playdough party packs were only $0.80 while the bigger pack with a rolling pin was just $1. Was a bit worried that we will exceed baggage allowance but luckily everything weighed about 20kg.

We will definitely go to bkk again one day. But maybe when the gals are bigger cos Platinum mall is very crowded and not suitable for young kids.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Teachers' Day Pressies

Mummy did not order Teachers' Day pressies early this year. I used to order from SMH Bulk purchase threads at least 1 month ahead. But with work and pv duties taking up my free time, it was a last minute scramble to get little gifts for RA and RL's teachers.

I can't bake so can't make home made cookies and cakes. But even if I could, I don't think I will make food. Because if just every kid give the teacher 1 cookie or cupcake, the teacher will be stuffed with more than 30 cookies depending on how many students she has and how many classes she teaches. From experience, there is always lots of food on Teacher's day because the school will give appreciation parties to the teachers as well. Some teachers don't dare to eat home made stuff by students or their parents either due to religion reasons (non halal kitchen) or they are worried about hygiene standards. Freshly made food have no preservatives. So they usually taste good but they can't keep well. Teachers may end up binning them if they can't finish all the food.

In the end, I grabbed everything from Daiso (travel toiletries kit, gift tags and stickers) because all the childcare teachers were going on a retreat to Bangkok this Friday to celebrate Teacher's Day. All the 3 Elfa centres are involved so more than 30 ladies. Must be quite a sight at the airport. Haha. The teachers are really excited. I heard them discussing about what tidbits to bring to Bkk. So I want to get something useful that they can use for the trip. A toiletries pack may be an auntie style gift but at least it is practical and does not take up much space.

Hubby once got a gigantic penguin from his students. Really cute but we just have nowhere to store it... :P I much prefer the simple ikea cushion that one of his students decorated with a fabric marker. If I remember correctly, the message said: "This is from one of your most awake students ever. Jolene Goh." That student has long graduated but the gift remained in our house for many years. ;)

When I was teaching, I prefer students give me a card than food. A simple hand written card is good enough. No need to be fancy. Unfortunately, my gals can't write very well yet especially Raelynn. So I still need to help Raelynn write the greetings. But I did ask RA draw and copy Happy Teachers' Day and her teachers' names on the cards and envelopes. Stickers are easy to handle so I let them decorate the cards and envelopes themselves. Hope her teachers will like it.

Happy Teachers' Day to all the teachers out there!

Monday, August 26, 2013

What's for dinner? - Make a guess

Black olive fried rice! Recipe from Sunday Times. But mine has no chilli n parsley n I only used 2 tablespoons of the black olive veg. Seasoned the minced pork with abalone sauce for extra flavour. RA had second helpings. Hee.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Slide at T3

We have not been to the airport for a very long time cos we did not bring the gals on any flights this year. Mostly short trips to Malaysia. Today, we went with the gals to T3. Wanted to let them try the T3 slide because RA's swim mates said it was very fun but we never knew where it was. Quite paiseh to be so 'suaku' since we stay in Tampines, so near to the airport.

After a quick dinner at Ramen champions, we went straight to look for the slide. Had to refer to floor plan n turns out we were at the opposite side since we parked at 3A. After walking over to the slide, I realised why we never noticed it. From far, it just looked like queue posts leading to a lift. N the slide was just a metal tubular enclosed slide with narrow curvature. Quite compact, no bright colours n furthermore, the slide view is partially blocked by the revolving gantry gates.

The slide was two storeys high and meant for kids 5 yrs n above with a minimum height of 110cm. There was a much higher one to be taken from level 3 or 4. Even though RA fit the minimum height but it took me a very long time to convince her to ride on her own. She was scared n the 2 storey slide with its gantry gates looked quite forbidding.

But once she overcame her fear n went down on her own, she was ok. We saw younger kids riding the slide so decided to bring Mei mei along for the second time. The fearless gal went down the slide lying on her tummy though it was her first time. She went down 2 more times after that but I get RA to accompany her cos she has problems pushing the exit button n opening the gantry gate.

They still wanted to slide but we convinced them to go to the viewing gallery after that. But I must say T2's viewing gallery is much better cos we are closer to the runway n planes. We could not see any planes taking off or landing at the T3 aviation gallery at all. The gals were quite disappointed but at least they had fun eating their mini dunkin donuts, climbing n sliding down the displays. After today, I think they will start asking to go to the airport more often. haha.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Hurry up! 快点!

Aunty Windy, one of my forum mummy friends, shared an article with us. It is a meaningful reflection of a mummy with 2 gals who always say hurry up to her kids because she is always rushing from place to place. Something her elder daughter said finally made her stop saying these words. It is such a nice story with pics so pls do read it.

After reading this article, I felt quite guilty. Especially since I just beat RL's hands a few days ago because she refused to wear her uniform after 3 verbal warnings from me. I was rushing for work and a 915am photoshoot so I already warned them the night before that they need to wake up very early in the morning. I warned her 3 times to quickly start dressing up while I was washing up and getting dressed. But when I came out of my room, RL is still half naked, her shirt beside her and reading a storybook on the floor. She looked like she had all the time in the world and she ignored all my warnings. That made me mad.

With hubby leaving the house by 7am everyday, morning rush is always something that I have to deal with the two girls. Even when I was not working, I will always say to them 快点,快点! 迟到了! 不要慢吞吞。 不要做梦。 It is not that I am super kancheong but they really take a long time to wake up, drink milk, brush teeth and get dressed. 1 hour in fact from the time they wake up until the time we leave the house.

Inevitably, they 'waste' time asking for extra milk (RL's fav delay tactic cos after I made more milk, she hardly finishes it), asking me to tie hair (RA & RL), choose hair tie (RA & RL) negotiate to bring dress instead of PJs (RL), choose dress (RL sometimes RA), choose which soft toy to bring to school (RA sometimes RL), negotiate to bring bb bites or biscuits to school (RL), choose shoes (RL & RL). If they wake up at 8am, we reach school at 9am thereabouts. A bit late for BF sometimes cos the other kids have eaten and my gals are lazy to eat separately from her classmates unless it is BF that they like eg. cornflakes or French toast.

Nowadays, morning rush is worse because I accepted my ex colleague's request to help work temporarily part time for a few months to tide them over. I accepted the job mainly they allowed me to work part time and I wanted some adult company. Lunching alone on weekdays is quite lonely so sometimes I even skip lunch. My working hours are 10am to 4pm so most days I can afford time to send the gals to school at 8+, 9am, go home change, have BF before I go to work.

But sometimes, there are meetings, early starts to the day and I end up having to wake them earlier and earlier. Since they are such night birds, they sleep only at 11pm on most days. It is really hard to wake up at 745am. RA's classmates Sihan reaches CC at 7am cos her parents are both teachers. And her other good friend, Valerie reaches school at 730am everyday. I know there is no excuse. My kids have the luxury of time. Reaching school between 830-9am is considered late. So nowadays I got more reason to ask them to hurry up cos I need to take 2 buses to get to work and I don't want to be late.

But even though I am guilty of asking them to hurry up on weekdays mornings, I relax after school hrs n on weekends. We bring them to the playground before the sky turns dark, let them cycle or play. After parking our car, they take turns to jump off the kerb or staircase if there are no cars. As we walked home, they search for snails in the dark garden pathway especially if it rained that day. If not they shout with glee if they spot a cat or a dog. Sometimes, they point out the moon and stars in the night sky. On fri night, I let them both sleep in the same room knowing that they will take longer to fall asleep. Read as many stories as they want instead of the usual 2 per night. In the weekends, they play at the playground, look for caterpillars in my limau perut plant (they love caterpillars), spot heart shaped leaves, birds or feathers on the ground.

It will be a tough battle not to say hurry up at all in hectic Singapore. I even say it to my hubby before we had kids so I won't set resolutions that I cannot keep. But what I will try to do is try my best to stop saying 'hurry up or 快点' on weekends. I will try out 'what will you like to do? No need to rush. Take as much time as you want' instead.

And I will like to see their reactions too. ;)

Friday, August 9, 2013

Hari Raya Puasa and NDP Long weekend - ECP

We have a 4 day break due to the two PHs. But did not jet off anywhere since air tickets were very exp and hb needs to mark. So yesterday, we spent the afternoon at Kidzgo, the indoor playground at Tampines1 because RL loves it there.

RL is coughing a little so I am not keen to bring here to air con places again. Decided to go ECP for a picnic since we have not done that for a long time. Also wanted to try out the new 6 men tent we bought early this yr.

At first, RL was not keen and she insisted on wearing a dress to the beach. She does not seem to be an outdoor kind of gal. Always into pretty dresses and high heel shoes. Faint! Finally persuaded her to wear a short skirt instead so that she can do sand play without getting all wet.

Packed ham and cheese sandwiches and a salad but the food they liked most was the strawberry n milk popcorn I bought from Daiso yesterday. My gals have a sweet tooth or rather sweet teeth.

Weather is very good. Cloudy so it was not hot and the weather stayed that way except in the afternoon there was a constant slight drizzle. We hid in our tent thinking the rain will get heavier but it never did. The gals had a happy time rolling and wrestling in the tent with Daddy. But when the sun come out, I was feeling v hungry so we had a late lunch at Brussel Sprouts. Yummy mussels but lousy wait staff except for a guy with tattoos. The rest of the staff were impatient and can't be bothered with questions or recommendations. The guy with tattoos was the friendliest and respond the fastest. After a v heavy tea, we went cycling to burn calories. Me, not the kids. -_-

Along the ride, we saw a jetty so we stopped for a while. RA was fascinated to see the anglers. One of them caught a small mud crab and a flower crab in that short 5-10 mins we were there. But by 7pm, can tell that their energy levels were v low with no afternoon nap today. I suggested having dinner there so that we can watch the fireworks from the jetty but they were not keen. Guess they had enough fireworks since last week. They wanted to go Nai nai house instead so we ended watching the rest of the NDP on tv. haha.

Birthday celebration at Serenity

Hb surprised me with flowers to my workplace this yr. I am temping part time for my ex company cos 3 staff resigned on the same day after getting their bonus. He picked me up at 4pm n brought me to Serenity at vivo city for my birthday dinner cos he read from hungrygowhere that the food was good. I like vivo city cos there is a nice view of Sentosa n the sea front plus lots of international branded shops that I don't usually find in Tampines. Had time to walk around before dinner started.

Food really is good at Serenity especially the grilled squid, no wonder it is a best seller. It looks simple, just grilled squid with olive oil n salt. But it was so tender and juicy, so aromatic with the right smoky flavour n slightly crispy tentacles edges. If it did not cost so much $18.80 for 3 squids. I would have ordered 3 plates and finished all by myself. I wish I can replicate this at home. Squid is not expensive but how did they make it so nice. Yummy....

Another house specialty was the spanish suckling pig. $98 for a 1/4 serving for two to share. It was just a small plate so I consider it very steep. The meat was tender and moist n there were 3 types of sauces to dip it in - roasting sauce, brown sauce and tomato jam. I like both the brown sauce and tomato jam most. But it was the crispy skin that was to die for. I forgot all about counting calories after eating the first piece.

The paella was also highly recommended, we tried the normal version which was $50+. The crayfish version recommended by the waiter would have cost $70+. This is the one dish that did not wow me. Maybe it was the spices used that did not agree with me or maybe cos I had higher expectations for paella. But I did not feel that the price was worth it. I think Fish n Co seafood platter with rice was better. Smoky n v generous with seafood. Hee.

But all in all, it was a great place to have a quiet dinner. Hb even dedicated a birthday song through the live band but I spoilt his plans a little by requesting to sit outside cos I cannot hear the dedication. But I did like the complimentary brownie cake. Haha.

We hardly splurge on expensive dinners after having kids. Always family dining or kids friendly restaurants. So thanks so much dada for our couple time together. :)

Art trial at crestar

RA is serving notice to end globalart classes by end Aug. She just told me she does not want to learn anymore. I tried switching her to another class with more of her cc classmates but she still wants to stop so i decided to let her take the lead on this. After all, globalart classes are not cheap since we still need to pay for books n materials.

Brought the gals for trial class at Crestar on Monday since they also attend ballet lessons there. The class is meant for kids above 4. Rl is 4 this yr though she is 4 months short. So both gals attended together. It was supposed to be a 1.5 hrs course but they changed it to 1 hr instead. The gals did some water colour n some tracing, colouring. But before they could finish finish cutting n pasting, 1 hr was up. Think it was too short because globalart class is 1.5 hrs though there is only colouring n blending. Not enough exposure to other media.

1 hr is definitely not enough for RL who did not even finish tracing. The other kids who were around 4 did not manage to finish colouring either. So the tcr said continue next week.

RA said she likes the art class n will like to continue but I find it too exp.$267.50 for 11 lessons. $24.75 per hr. Even more exp than globalart. I am also not keen to burn monday nights after getting rid of wed nights. So I think I will just ask hb to teach in the meantime. Save $ n Time. :)