Friday, July 30, 2010

Passing phase in life

As I watched my sister cuddled her newborn baby in her arms...




















I was glad that I don't have to panic frantically to care for a fragile baby all over again
I was happy that I don't have to work tirelessly through the sleepless nights...






















But at the same time
I also couldn't help feeling sad
as I secretly mourn the passing of this sweet little phase in life --
-- that I no longer have babies to cuddle and bond with...


p/s: Erm.. but it's ok, don't ask me to have a 3rd one, all phases in life have to come to an end, whether we like it or not :)


SEE THE WORLD, ABIGAIL !
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Monday, July 19, 2010

4 year old tantrums

I heaved a huge sigh of relieve when Kai passed his Terrible TWO's.
Cos' I was told there would be Fabulous THREE.
Well, I was conned into believing it. It never happen.
And if anybody is going to tell me there is Marvelous FOUR, I'm going to blow his head.

Kai's tantrums started shortly after he turned two and continued until today. Now he is four but I don't think it will cease anytime soon. There are simply too many triggers to his tantrum fits. Things like spilling his water onto the floor and wanting to lick it, dropping food on the floor and wanting to put them back into his mouth, people helping to put on his shoes when running late, having the correct toy cars in his bath, as well as the many forbidden rules he laid down for me. If you are not already aware, he actually forbade me to pee and to let down my hair!

I was worried. I started to think that something is very wrong with my child. But when I found out from google that temper tantrums is also common in 4-years old, about 20 pounds lifted off my shoulders. My son is not abnormal. He is testing.

Research (Potegal & Davidson, 2003) have shown that children between 18-24 months throw 87% of tantrums; 30-36 months old throw 91% while 42-48 months old throw 59% of tantrums. And on average, tantrums lasted for two minutes in one-year-olds, four minutes in children aged 2-3 and five minutes in four-year-olds. As for frequency, the tantrums occurred eight times a week for one-year-olds, nine times a week for two-year-olds, six times a week for three-year-olds and five times a week for four-year-olds. (Source: Raising Children Network)

Common causes of tantrums include being hungry or tired. How true that is! No wonder Kai was extremely difficult in Japan. Oh, and how clever it is for experts to say that temper tantrum is the child's way of asking for attention. I think they are abso-freaking-lutely RIGHT! I realised that in most of the tantrums, Kai wanted my attention. He wanted undivided attention, which I couldn't give. I can only give divided attention, which is left after splitting them between Xuan and housework. Anyway, I'm learning to manage Kai's tantrums. When he spilled food or water on the floor, I'd tell him the correct way to do it is to pick up the food with a piece of tissue and throw them into the rubbish bin. He is buying into that. I also realised that if I blurted out a loud and quick 'NO' to any of his actions, he'd become defensive and there'd be a complete meltdown. Slowly but surely, I am managing his tantrums.

Yes, Kai has a lot of growing up to do before he can outgrow his tantrums.

There is a long way to go.

Parenting is an untiring and challenging journey. You just said that, didn't you?
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Friday, July 16, 2010

Malaguena

video

One of my favourite pieces played by Xuan - so much so that I'm struggling to learn it!!!

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Me time? Trying my luck next year

I was reading a mother's blog (Jayne's Why Not) the other day. She wrote that it was sad to have her kids pounding her toilet door in the morning when she was taking a dump, screaming for her to open the door just to see her! And she hilariously put "A mom who can't even shit in peace, is in deep shit." I had a good laugh but at the same time I couldn't help but relate it to my own plight and misfortune.

Actually, on a lighter note, unlike her, I was given the luxury to shit in peace. But unfortunately I was not allowed to pee. Erm... given the higher frequency of pee to poo in a day, you might understand how unfortunate I was. Sometimes I need to hold my bladder until he (Kai) was distracted into his CARS zooming mode before I can scurry into the toilets. Worse, I need to come up with lies that I want to poo in order to pee in peace. Never in my life had I ever perceived parenting as about not being able to pee or poo. That's life when your kids are weirdo! No, I don't mean to badmouth my kids here. They are the sweetest angels a quarter of the time. In parenting, there are just too many weird things you can get from kids.

So the case in point is -- in order to maintain a sound mind, the stay-home mom needs to constantly give herself some 'me' time. Which is what I need badly. With their staggering school hours, I always have a kid with me at any time. And it is almost impossible for me to step out of the house alone, all by myself, to feel the breeze (if any) and to catch a breath. And to do that without the need to hurry back home or feeling guilty.

Oh, and that is why I attempted to put Kai in the afternoon session when he first started nursery, so that both he and Xuan are in school at the same time. Unfortunately that plan failed miserably. I still haven't figured out whether it was the lack of nap or the anxiety, which made Kai so grouchy that we drew him out from that preschool to another one in the morning session.

Anyway, I've decided to try my luck again next year by putting him in the afternoon session (never learn my lesson)! I really hope he can do without naps by then. And without naps, perhaps he can fall asleep the moment his head hits the pillows at night? Perhaps?

Well, if everything goes well... I will have time to take up pilates, yoga, dressmaking, hairdressing, fashion designing, cooking, swimming ... ah! Wishful thinking!
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Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Animal Resort

We went there today. Couldn't wait till the school holidays.
It is so near to home. So we thought we might just hop over to take a look.
First thing out of the car, we were already bitten by the mosquitoes.
Erm... and don't put too much expectations. There is nothing much to see actually.
You can't expect too much from a free-entrance resort anyway!

It is nevertheless a good place for kids to feed and interact with the animals. So if you are a protective parent (like us, unfortunately) who feels that the chances of the kids being bitten by the animals are higher than what they can learn from the close-up interaction, then forget it, there's nothing much to muse about, really.

There were some exotic animals, which I don't know their names, for the kids to 'woo' and 'ah'.
But all our activities were confined to pointing at the animals from afar... and then "err... sorry kids, I don't know its name, I need to go back and google for it!" Not at all educational to have parents like us! Sigh! Anyway, some of the animals that we recognised were: hamsters (quite easy to tell since I watch a fair bit of Playhouse Disney with the kids), swans (overheard from one of the parents telling their kids, as I always thought swans are supposed to be in waters), rabbits (these I know pretty well since I was born in their year), peacock (can tell from its colourful feathers), peahen (not that difficult since they live together with the peacock)... There were also ducks, goats, roosters... oh and a pretty decent and handsome horse! There were some fishes too, but we didn't join in the crowd on that bridge overlooking the fishes. We left the place after some 15 minutes.

Well, here are some photos. Do let me know the names of the exotic ones here...



















The Animal Resort

T81 Seletar West Farmway 5
http://www.rictedkennels.com/

Now, I'm worried sick if there were any Aedes mosquitoes over there. The bites on Xuan and Kai's arms have ballooned...

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

Small talks

Kai managed to sleep through the night for the past week.
I bet it's the Japan trip that did the trick.
(Keeping my fingers crossed that this luxury will continue ...)
And since I also slept through the night, I was happier to indulge in small chats with him before sleep.

Me: Will you take care of me and daddy when we grow old next time? (the same question I asked Xuan when she was younger)

Kai: Yes!

Me: How will you take care of us?

Kai: Bring you to the doctor (the same answer I got from Xuan when I asked the same question)... *pause* umm... first it's jiejie (he thinks of Jie jie when I didn't mention her in my question) ...then you go in, then daddy... (I guessed he is refering to taking turns for consultation at the doctor's)

Me: I see... you will bring us to see the doctor when we are sick. But how are you going to bring us there? Do we take bus or taxi or MRT?

Kai: NO... car!

Me: You will drive the car?

Kai: Yes!

Me: But do you know the way?

Kai: Yes! *complete with his driving/steering pose* Turn right... correct or not? (still must double check) Then turn left... then OK! (I wish driving is that easy)

Me: Ok. Then what else will you do, how will you take care of us?

Kai: I will buy you things. I buy white clothes for you (He knows my favourite colour). Pretty one..., you want or not?

Me: Yes... (starting to get excited, but guess what?...)
...
..

Kai: OK... we sleep first!

He initiated SLEEP!!!
Haha...
Must be tired of this kind of little women's small talks.
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Saturday, July 3, 2010

Holidays???

We just came back from Japan not long ago but I'm already searching the Net for our next holiday destination. I was so put off by this Tokyo trip that I thought to myself that it'd be for a long while before we travel again. Yet, what am I doing here? Sitting in front of the computer searching for the weather conditions in Taiwan, China, Hokkaido, and even Mauritius; comparing deals offered by various travel agencies to these destinations!!??? What an irony!! I guessed Kai's easy-peasiness on the 7-hour flight has given me the kick and punch for more traveling.
Oh well...

Traveling has now confined to June and December school holidays only. December is not a good month to travel due to the chilling winter, while June is typically stormy and rainy. At first I settled on Mauritius for December, which surprising is a good month to travel to. But the lack of place of interest for the kids extinguishes the original excitement I have for that place. It is more for honeymooners, I concluded. We had long passed that stage, so had better forget it.

I also thought of Hokkaido for December. But two trips to Japan in a year? Not too good an idea. Next I thought of Taiwan... then Shanghai, Jiangnan and the like... and now the plate is full. But not in December. Too cold. So it shall be June next year!!! I'm sure we'll take the tour package in full. No more F&E, no more homework.... just need to compare and sign for the best deal from travel agencies.

Meanwhile for the September short break and December month-long holidays, we shall have our holidays in SINGAPORE. Yeah!!

There are just so many places we have yet to visit in our own homeland:

Kids Kampung
http://www.prkidskampong.com/
Kai was supposed to go to Kids Kampung in one of his school excursions, but due to his mischievous nature, we pulled him out from this fun as we were extremely worried that he'd drown himself in the process of longkang fishing during the trip. So we will bring him there ourselves. We promise we'd be extra careful.

Museums
http://www.nationalmuseum.sg/nms/nms_html/index.asp
Heard the hype about museums, museums and museums... but don't have the time to bring the kids there. We shall do it this time, alright.

Marina Bay Sands
http://www.marinabaysands.com/
Not forgeting the newly launched baby... I hope we'd be wowed by the Sky Park. The astounding rooftop paradise (is suppose to) take your breath away...

The Animal Resort
http://www.rictedkennels.com/
This hidden treasure is (alas!) so near yet so far... This place provides farm experience, allowing visitors to observe, interact with, and feed the animals (geese and crown cranes, turkey, swan, peacock, rabbits and hamsters ...) We will go there one fine day! It is at T81 Seletar West Farmway 5.

Escape Theme Park & Wild Wild Wet
http://www.escapethemepark.com.sg/index.aspx
http://www.wildwildwet.com.sg/index.aspx
Instead of throwing the precious dollars down the drains of the Universal Studios and next to the Tokyo Disneyland due to bad weather, I think we should go to the more economical Escape Theme Park and next to the Wild Wild Wet on one fine day. But must make sure to read the weather forecasts before we go!
....

more places will be added as I continue to plan the itinerary for our upcoming SINGAPORE holidays...

all suggestions welcomed!
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