Sunday, April 30, 2006

Alexandra's Birthday party on 23rd April

Waiting for us to get ready
Having some fun posing for me
Could see the excited look on my girl's face since last night. And this morning, she was even more excited. She reminded me to bring the birthday present for "that Ale.. dunno what's her name girl". Quite poor thing my girl don't get invited to many birthday parties. (which explains why I brought my video camera along.)

Mainly her friends are her classmates, and they only do a simple celebration in school.I remember when I approached Mrs Wong last year if they allowed Pinatas in school, she at first reacted to "what's that" and then said "no, coz' we are afraid of the danger" although I assured her that nowadays Pinatas have those pull string kinds not the 'whack till it opens' kind. So any birthday party that she's been invited to - MUST GO!!

I shan't say much, just view the photos and some video links :
- Art & Craft
- Limbo Rock
- Birthday song (look out for the birthday girl's defensive action)
- Getting her cake (after a long long time..)
- Eating her cake
- Pinata
- Post-party

Ps. I frightened the shit out of some people inc. Angeline, when I stood on a chair to tape the Pinata scene. I heard "Ahurrr....."behind me. Haha! With Athena, I actually ran after a bus once; with my mother and some people in the bus-stop panicking for me. Now with No2 is this! Hee!


Some notes on her behaviour
1. Too timid
2. Too shy
3. At home naughty like dunno what.. outside behaved like an angel.
4. Needs alot of nudging
5. Scardy cat. Very slow - sure lose out.

The reasons why I'm saying this, is through my observations during the party
She is way too timid and shy. All the other kids could be so independent and join in the games and queue up for things. She doesn't, she gets so clingy. I don't understand what she's afraid of? Obviously, she didn't take after me.
When you queue, you are supposed to move forward. I don't know why she simply stood there, all the other kids from behind went forward. I had to push her.. then to the bystanders - they may think I'm "yao gui (in dialect)" or "greedy". She wanted to join to see the cake, and she had the advantage as she was around there when the table was set up. She would have stood there right infront of the table. But she dare not move forward until all the kids come in. And then she start screaming "I want to see, I want to see.." Stupid right?? When getting the cake she waited quite a long time to get her cake until the lady noticed she had been there.. gave it to her. And I was the only parent to stand with a kid, make me so "yao gui". But then seeing how she enjoyed the cake made me happy.
Pinata time, I had to ask hubby to help her. Cause knowing that "gu niang" girl very slow, sure will not get anything. And you know all the kids will rough it out; take it away from her. And what will she do?? She'll just stand there and then look at us pathetically, not fighting back.
Hubby made the remark "bring her go party, she get bullied."Well, I reminded him about what Master Tan said about her. "No guts, needs alot of pushing from the parents." As her mother, it pains my heart to see her disappointed look or when she gets bullied. But what can I do? A few times I stood up for her and scolded the other children when she was bullied outside.. but I'm not with her every minute; every hour.
Needless to say, she didn't get as much goodies as the other kids. But how am I suppose to answer her? Be frank with her and tell her "you stupid, you slow??" I can't.. it may hurt her feelings. So just had to find other excuse to make her feel better. And we wanted to make up to her by buying her titbits from supermarket.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Crazy computer

Yesterday, for a short while, I noticed my Blogger page was fully loaded. Which means that I can load pictures in, align my pages neatly and most importantly link up to other websites.

I was not able to do so for a long time, which explains why sometimes my blogs are dated way back (coz' I needed to go over to brother's computer to load pics in etc..)

Quickly took the opportunity to load and complete my blogs. I just hope it remains this way forever. It's really very inconvenient for me.

Such a holy holy girl

Last night, was reading to her Sleeping Beauty. When she suddenly looked at the picture (of baby and the Queen/King and fairies around her) in a different perspective.

Her eyes lit up and she looked at me "mummy, mummy you see baby Jesus". Haha!

Then, this morning. She woke up and she started singing to me
"This is the day, This is the day that the Lord have made..........."

I wonder if the rest of the day, she'll spring surprises on me again. Eg. like sometimes out of the blue she'll start saying grace before her meals.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Who's the mother in the house??

Girl had to nag at me like a mummy to her daughter today.

It's quite funny as I think back of what she said and lamented at me. I got my shirt and short wet when I was washing the toilet. I came out and she saw me, told me off in that 'ai yoh' voice "mummy, why you play with water??"
M: I didn't play with water. I was washing the toilet
A : You see, Athena never play with water, I never get wet. You play with water you get wet
A : Quick, quick. You must quickly change your shirt and short (as she said that pulled down my short)
M : Ay!
A : After you sick how?? (giving me that puppy look eyes)
A : Come, I wear your short for you. You quickly change your shirt.

Forgot floor was wet and walked back in the toilet and almost fell. Made a "ai yoh" sound myself.
She responded : You must be very careful. You cannot fall down (holds my arm - like as if she can support me)
But it's really sweet of her to do that.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Was I too hard on her?

Hubby said I'm too hard on girl. And music should be something to be enjoyed not "forced into". Well, I don't deny that when I do her music revision, I expect her to do well. And sometimes she is just too playful and didn't want to do the right way. I have to bring out the cane.. and she did well, not that she didn't know the steps - SHE KNEW!! It made me feel guilty as barely a few hours ago (on 25th) she hugged me and told me she enjoyed herself.

And today, I decided she had too much fun and needed to do her assessment books. I was surprised that she could do one on her own without me guiding her what she was supposed to look out for. So, a harsh mummy I was, let her do her assesment books for more than half an hour.Perhaps I'm not only a harsh mummy but a cruel one too! No one ever heard someone pushing their children at Age3.

But something which Master Tan said about her is that "she lacks attention, and we'll get to see 'have to try harder' in her report book. We, as parents, have to push her and nudge her." Which probably explains why I'm harsh on her when it comes to study. I mean, I do give her the freedom to play and she already get to enjoy it.. she has to give me her full attention when it comes to studies.

Perhaps, what mom said is quite true. She said "sending Athena to St. Nicolas is too much for her, since she's so playful. She may get kicked out in the first year." I still have 1 more year to decide if I want to offer my volunteer service to St Nic. If not, I'll put her in CHIJ Katong and pray hard she do wellin her PSLE to go into a better Secondary school.

HFMD- Awareness campaign works or virus dying off?

Whatever it is, I was happy that HPB actually came up with the awareness campaign on the recent HFMD outbreak. I don't remember they had it last year.

This year, after my girl's 2 weeks self-quarantine, we went back to the school. And was pleasantly surprised that brochures were given out to all parents (obviously I was late in receiving it). A small table was set up near the main entrance to check and send back kids there and then. So in other words, a child who can be unknowingly infected do not mingle around with other healthy kids. I think it's good, and they even bar parents from going into the class sections.
Last week, after I manage to get my break without girl's Richard Scarry & dunno what nots VCDs, I saw a advertorial on that.At least it's reaching out to more audiences.

What's more happy to know is the report from Straits Times yesterday.

Extracted from : April 26, 2006
HFMD cases dip sharply this month

THE number of people infected by hand, foot and mouth disease has almost halved from a high of 784 cases last month to 399 cases this month.

Since the HFMD Task Force stepped up measures to combat the infectious childhood disease last month, the number of cases has dropped steadily in the past five weeks, said the Ministry of Health in a statement yesterday.

Last week, 52 children were seen for HFMD at the A&E departments of KK Women's and Children's Hospital and National University Hospital. At its peak this year, the two hospitals saw 126 cases in the week ending March 25.

As part of preventive measures, the task force has worked with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports to tighten guidelines for preschool, kindergarten and childcare centre closures to check transmissions.

HFMD cannot be eradicated but its spread can be slowed by good hygiene. Doctors have also been asked to be more vigilant in looking out for children with the disease.

The Ministry of Health has called for continued vigilance at schools, and has advised parents to take their children to a doctor if they show symptoms of the disease, including fever, mouth ulcers and rashes on the palms, soles or buttocks.

Although HFMD is usually mild, the current strain of the infection is the more deadly enterovirus-71, which killed seven children here in the 2000-2001 outbreak.


Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The 5 hours in Orchard well-spent

Needed to go down to do my Triple Test today, so brought girl along.

As she's still nursing her cough, I did not intend to stay in Orchard long. Moreover I was rather tired myself. So, we took the car instead of the train. I spent almost an hour waiting for them to take my blood test (when I didn't even have to see the gynae)

After which, I made a trip to SPA Valley behind Heeren to get mom voucher for Mother's Day.

Girl was then getting impatient and kept asking me to go. However the moment I just pushed the stroller a few steps, she fell fast asleep. Well, she should be.... the Fedac makes her drowsy.

I took the opportunity to have my lunch. And I was craving for Italian at Spageddies. As I was feeling hungry and more gluttony than usual, I decided to order a soup. The Soup of the Day was Pumpkin and no way am I going to drink Cinderella's coach. Yucks! So I ordered the Minestrone instead. Bad choice, the soup wasn't nice. Main course is my usual Crayfish Parmigiana (but changed the spagetti to penne-always loved penne) and drinks- Italian Passion Fruit Soda. I think even before my main course came, I almost finished the drink. I wanted a carbonated drink and it's really shiok when I wanted to feel the *burps*.

Then she woke up, and in order to 'play time' as we won't be ordering their Kids meal. I fed her her porridge while she was doing some colouring, and ordered an Italian Chocolate Cake for myself. Talk about feeling gluttony.

Wanted to head back home but she wanted to play with toys. I guess the additional 1 hr plus will not add much to the parking fees. Stopped over at ELC where she enjoys playing with the train set. Bought her 4 other Usbourne collections to add on to the current 4 she has.

Sharped eye girl saw ToysRUs on the 6th floor and wanted to go there. We only spent 15 minutes there. And then popped by in MarketPlace to get her Pokka Carrot Juice before we head back home.

At home, she came up to me; hugged me and said "mummy I enjoy myself today"

Triple test

Just what is Triple Test?

Pregnant women are routinely offered a blood test called a triple test. This screening test (not diagnostic) measures the amount of three specific proteins in a pregnant woman's blood. This test is also known as: Triple Screen, AFP Plus, Multiple Marker Test, or Prenatal Risk Profile Test.

This "triple test" is mainly used to identify pregnancies which may be at increased risk for:

* Down syndrome
* Neural tube defects NTD (spina bifida or anencephaly)
* Other birth defects

Abnormal results must be confirmed by a diagnostic test (amniocentesis) combined with a high resolution ultrasound performed by an expert in birth defects and laboratory studies of the amniotic fluid and cells including chromosome studies.

You must think through what your reaction would be to a positive test result, and you should undergo genetic counselling before accepting any diagnostic tests (Amniocentesis or Chorionic Villus sampling).

Before you opt for screening, keep in mind that early screening tests are not very accurate. The large majority of women with a positive Triple Test prove after Amniocentesis not to have a Down's Syndrome baby. In addition, these false positive results can cause a great deal of anxiety, creating added emotional stress at a time when you need it least.

Thoughts from me:

It's really scary thinking 'what if', 'what if'.

I'm against abortion and I think children are a gift from God. I've seen children with DSyndrome who behaves normally and responds well to me - but not to forget my time with them is only that less than 30 minutes. Would I react the same way if it's my child? I have to face him/her the rest of his/her life.

Although I preach I'm against abortion, will the situation make me change my mind?
Will I or will I not? Would you?

Monday, April 24, 2006

Sesame Street T-shirts

Showing off her new T-shirts. On Friday, I got her two shirts (Elmo and Big Bird) from Bossini. And yesterday, I was lucky to see the Cookie Monster shirts in its outlet in Lot1. Girl was asleep, so I chose the blue Cookie Monster shirt (can only see the eyes) and this. But she likes this better citing that "blue colour are for boys".
Umm.. I bought Size 130, which is suitable for 8-9 but it fits her just nice now.

Her cough is making me worried

I don't know where I should go now? I have been bringing her to see the Sinseh since her cough started more than a month back. Although there were some improvements but lately there hasn't been any. And her cough usually comes out in the night when she's lying down. After her last bottle of medication, I decided to try 猴枣, which is said to be good to reduce phlegm.
The debate of not bringing her back to see her PD is to avoid being treated for the symptoms for the time being but rather to go into the root of the problem. But so far, my trips + $$$ already costs more than her PD visit. And not forgetting the 猴枣 alone costs $120 for a 4 day course. *Gasp*
Last night, her cough sounded worst to me. Hubby kept insisting she's wheezing but I said it's not, it's her snoring. Probably her nasal is a little blocked while she's sleeping (as we sleep in an 28 deg cel room now).
Today, she coughed out phlegm a couple of times. I think it's good.. But tiring for me, what if she dirties the mattress cover? I have to do alot of job. I'm so tired!!!

What is 猴枣?

英文名】Rhesus Macaque Bezoar
【来 源】为猴科动物猕猴等内脏的结石。
【功 效】消痰镇惊,清热解毒。
【主 治】治痰热喘嗽,小儿惊痫,瘰疬痰核。
【性味归经】辛、温①《中国医学大辞典》:"苦,寒,无毒。"②《饮片新参》: "微咸兼苦,寒平,无毒。"肺、胃二经
【用法用量】内服: 研末,2~5分。 外用:醋摩涂。
【别 名】猴子枣、羊肠枣(《药物出产辨》)、猴丹(《中国医学大辞典》)、申枣(《药材资料汇编》)


Calculus Macacae Mulattae Macaca mulatta Zimmermann



【考 证】

出自《药物出产辨》: "猴枣生于老猿猴之胃及肝胆间,缘猿猴常食各种山果,积年累月,其精液所结成为石者,形如枣,犹如牛之生黄,狗之生宝。故治效亦相类也。猴枣为治热痰最灵捷之圣药,功胜西黄八宝散,暨诸祛热痰药。"



Wheezing is a characteristic whistling sound heard in the chest or in the breathing of a person who has partial obstruction of the smallest breathing tubes, the bronchioles (bronk-ee-oles). It is characteristic of asthma and bronchiolitis.

When a person breathes in, the chest expands, and everything in the chest expands along with it. This includes the breathing tubes. This makes it easier for air to go in (through larger air tubes during inspiration) than for it to go out (through smaller air tubes on expiration). This effect is magnified many times if there is any narrowing of the air passages, such as when there is swelling of the walls of the air tubes (for example from asthma or infection) or if there is debris and excessive thick mucus blocking the air passages (asthma or viral infection). The peculiar sound of wheezing is produced by the abnormal vibration of millions of tiny air tubes in this way.

Specific situations that involve a true wheezing or a wheezing sound in your child's breathing include:

* Newborns often sound wheezy at times. This is because of stuffy, narrow nasal passages, often with some old dried milk that has run up in the nasal passages from the rear during nursing. Saline drops and suction of the nose makes it disappear.
* Babies in the first few months and older infants with true wheezing caused by viral infection - usually RSV. This may be accompanied by clear nasal discharge and possibly fever. Call your doctor.
* Toddlers over a year with wheezing may still have a viral respiratory infection but allergic wheezing or asthma is a possibility.
* Older children with wheezing generally have a history of allergic symptoms and are more likely to have asthma. Asthma should be treated even if "it's not too bad," because untreated bronchial inflammation gets worse with time. Don't forget that their wheezing often starts with cold symptoms as well, though, because a cold is likely to trigger an attack in an asthmatic individual.
* Foreign bodies (popcorn, nuts, small plastic objects, food particles - you name it) in the bronchial tubes cause wheezing noises that are often confused with true wheezing. Many times the parents are able to give valuable clues to the doctor by observing that the wheezing started after the child seemed to choke on something.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Discussion with husband : Cord Blood Banking

I brought this up to my husband last night about Stem Cord Banking. I was surprised that he didn't know anything about this or heard about it. Well, the first time I heard about it was in 2002 when StemCord was set up in Singapore. However at that time it wasn't common to store Stem Cord and I do not really understand much of it and then I "bomb", next minute the important cells from my little girl's umbilical cord is thrown away.And not forgetting the placenta too( should have asked gynae to smear the placenta on my face!).

So this time, I've brought this up to my husband. With the reasons that we did not do any banking for our first born and if we kept this for the second born, it will help him/her and his/her sibling. And this is the last chance as I'm not planning to have anymore children. So it's now or never.........

These are extracted from StemCord website on their FAQs :
1. What is in umbilical cord blood that is so important?
2. What are blood stem cells?
3. Why blood stem cells useful and valuable?
4. What are the advantages of storing blood stem cells from cord blood?
5. What is cord blood banking?
6. Who is suitable for cord blood banking?
7. How is cord blood collected and stored?
8. Are there any risks to mother or the baby?
9. Ethical issues
10. How long can stem cells be stored?
11. Why do families choose to collect and store their baby's cord blood?
12. Can I bank my baby's cord blood with a public cord blood bank?
13. Wow do we know that the stem cells processed and stored at StemCord are still viable?
14. Are we sure that these cryopreserved stem cells will work when we need to use them years later?

Following the birth of a baby, the umbilical cord usually is discarded along with the placenta. However, it is now known that blood retrieved from the umbilical cord is a rich source of stem cells. Stem cells are immature, pluripotent cells that can produce all other blood cells, including blood-clotting platelets and red and white blood cells. Like donated bone marrow, umbilical cord blood can be used to treat various genetic disorders that affect the blood and immune system, leukemia and certain cancers, and some inherited disorders of body chemistry. To date, more than 45 disorders can be treated with stem cells from umbilical cord blood.

Blood stem cells are the “grandfather” of blood cells. They produce blood cells such as white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets which are essential for normal life. Blood stem cells are usually found in the bone marrow and in the peripheral blood circulation (smaller quantities). In the 1980s, the umbilical cord blood was noted to contain large amounts of blood stem cells also

Blood stem cells are crucial for stem cell transplants (SCT). SCT is a very important treatment option for many blood disorders and cancers. Without blood stem cells, a patient will not have this option and may not have a chance of a cure. Because of this, various public blood stem cell banks have been set up across the world to provide potential blood stem cell donors. These public stem cell banks are in the form of bone marrow registries or public cord blood banks

In private cord blood banks, an individual can keep his/her own blood stem cells. These stored blood stem cells may provide a treatment option for him/her in the future.

1. Blood stem cells from cord blood are easier to harvest . The harvesting process does not entail any risk to both mother and child. Harvesting blood stem cells from the bone marrow requires general anaesthesia, which entails some health risk. Bone marrow harvesting also involves some pain, as oppose to no pain at all with cord blood harvesting.
2. Stem cell transplants using cord blood has less Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD) and hence has lower risks to the recipient . This is due to the “less matured” nature of the blood stem cells in cord blood in comparison to those from bone marrow and peripheral blood.
3.Because of lower GVHD risk, cord blood transplants can be attempted even if there is no perfect HLA matching.
4. In private cord blood banking, the stored blood stem cells are kept for the individual. But in view of the above, the stored cord blood stem cells can potentially be used for other family members .
5. The stored cord blood stem cells are always readily available. This is a potential advantage as we do not waste precious time searching for potential blood stem cell donors. In some conditions, e.g. Aplastic Anemia, the time to a stem cell transplant is critical and having some blood stem cells readily available is very important.
6. Cord blood is less likely to contain certain infectious agents , like some viruses such as cytomegalovirus that can pose a risk to transplant recipients.
7. Some studies suggest that cord blood may have a greater ability to generate new blood cells than bone marrow. Ounce for ounce, there are nearly 10 times as many blood-producing cells in cord blood. This fact suggests that a smaller number of cord blood cells are needed for a successful transplantation.

Cord blood banking is the collection and storage of blood taken from the umbilical cord after the baby is delivered. Cord blood is one of the richest sources of stem cells. Stem cells are unique primitive cells that have the capability of differentiating into a variety of cell types of the body. Currently, there is a lot of research being done, looking into using these stem cells for treatment of many other illnesses.

Storing cord blood is suitable for everyone unless it is a difficult or complicated pregnancy. Your obstetrician will be able to advise you accordingly. Storing these valuable cells for your newborn baby will provide them into a form of “biological insurance”.

Cord blood banking is particularly useful and advisable for the following :

1. Family history of blood disorder and cancers
Potentially may offer an extra treatment option in the form of stem cell transplant.
2. Small family size, single child family, late pregnancies (>35 yrs old), difficult pregnancies or sub fertile couples.
In this situations, the child may be the only child and hence will not have any donor, should he/she develop any diseases that require a stem cell transplant.
3. Mixed Marriages (from different races)
In this situation, it is very unlikely to be able to get a donor from the public stem cell banks as the genetic constitution will be very different. It is similar to people with rare blood groups.
4. The First Born
It is advisable to collect for the first born as we will never know if subsequent pregnancies will be successful. As such, if the first born becomes the only child, he will not have any siblings to depend on for blood stem cells, should he require any.

Cord blood is collected after the baby is delivered and the umbilical cord is clamped and cut. Cord blood collection is a procedure that usually takes less than five minutes and can be performed in vaginal or caesarean deliveries and for multiple births. StemCord offers both the syringe or bag collection method, which gives your doctor a choice to use the method he or she prefers. With the syringe, the collection is similar to drawing blood for a blood test. After your baby has been born and the cord has been clamped and cut, the blood will be drawn from the umbilical cord before it is discarded. The bag collection method is similar, only gravity is used to drain the umbilical cord blood into the collection bag. Everything your doctor needs is contained in the kit you receive upon enrollment.

After collection, the blood is transported to the laboratory. It will be then processed by a special method and then stored in liquid nitrogen tanks at -180oC. Regardless of how the cord blood is collected (syringe or bag), we store the sample in multiple cryovials that are specifically designed for long-term cryogenic storage and have a long history of proven dependability and flexibility for future use. Stem cell technology is evolving rapidly, we believe that storage in multiple vials provides our clients with a significant future benefit because the cells may potentially be used for more than one treatment. We have a double-containment system, which is designed to eliminate the potential risk of cross-contamination during long-term storage. This system provides the most secure, long-term cryogenic storage available. The ability to cryosheath the vial as well as the risk of bag breakage in liquid nitrogen are the primary reasons we store the cells in cryovials instead of blood bags.

There are no risks to both mother and baby as cord blood is collected only after baby is delivered and the cord is clamped and cut. The volume of blood collected is small and negligible and hence does not “bleed” the mother.

Unlike using stem cells taken from embryos, there are no ethical issues involved in the collection or usage of stem cells from cord blood. If cells from this source are not stored, the blood is discarded and hence valuable stem cells will be lost. Collection of these unique cells will only be possible and available at time of birth of the child.

Researchers believe that stem cells can be stored for indefinite period of time. In terms of published literature, cryopreserved stem cells had been proven to remain viable after 15 years of storage.

Once-in-a-Lifetime Opportunity – Only at Birth

Expectant parents are storing cord blood for their families, not only as a potential life-saving resource for current uses of stem cells, but also for their future potential. Some families have more defined risk factors, but most often, parents bank for the security in knowing the health benefits stem cells may someday offer their children themselves, or other family members.

Recent clinical studies support the unique suitability of cord blood stem cells for a number of developing technologies. Doctors are especially enthusiastic about the potential use of cord blood stem cells in the emerging fields of gene therapy and cellular repair. When you bank your baby's cord blood stem cells, you are saving what may be a key component to potential future medical treatments and cures.

With the cord blood donated to a public bank, if it has not been used for research or by someone else, a family might be able to retrieve their donated sample. It is important for parents to understand that not all donated samples are banked. This same discipline applies to a normal blood donation drive that not everybody is suitable for blood donation. A rejection from the public banks could be based on family medical history, maternal medical history, collection volume, and examination of the maternal blood sample.

If autologous cells are not available, or cannot be used, stem cells from a relative (preferably a sibling) are usually the next best treatment option. Unrelated cord blood puts the patient at a much greater risk of developing potentially fatal GVHD. Related cord blood also reduces the risk that the transplant sample may harbor genetic problems that could cause disease in the recipient because of the family's prior knowledge of their genetic history.

Cord blood cells, being less mature than adult stem cells, have a higher likelihood of being a suitable HLA match between siblings as compared to only a slim chance for bone marrow. Public banks can ensure an adequate sample for transplant but not the best or most preferred sample. Families that personally bank their baby's cord blood stem cells have the assurance and security of the closest match for either child or family member, without fear of not finding a match.

Right from the beginning, StemCord had put in place many quality checks and work processes to maintain the viability of these cryopreserved stem cells. These measures are in strict accordance with the standards of the American Association of Blood Banks and had been certified by the licensing unit of the Ministry of Health.

StemCord is proud to announce that it had contributed and helped in the care of patients with cancers from the lymphatics, marrow, nose, soft tissue and ovary. Blood stem cells had been collected from the blood or bone marrow of these patients. These units were processed and stored at –180 degrees Celsius in StemCord Laboratory. They were subsequently used in conventional Stem Cell Transplants for these patients. We are happy to announce that all patients had engrafted. Their engraftment had varied from 9 to 29 days. This data is consistent with international norms for patients with similar age and clinical features.

This engraftment data is the ultimate proof that StemCord's processing & storage of stem cells (irrespective from bone marrow, peripheral blood or umbilical cord blood) works.


So, anyway on this. This is what I found out.

Public Bank

Go away mosquitoes

There is something quite disturbing..

We have been seeing alot of mosquitoes lately. Actually - it's not really alot. But in a week we'll see 1 - 2, we used to think that mosquitoes has become extinct (since we didn't get to see it since we moved in years ago ).

And this is quite disturbing as we have a little girl at home. I'll try to kill the mosquitoes, then for added security I either burn Eucalyptus essential oil or use the so-called swirling air purifier filled with Eucalyptus to dispel insects. (I hope it works). But then again, I think it's rather harmful for me.

I'm beginning to worry if, the "used to" breed lizards, we'ved changed to breeding mosquitoes now. Argh! We have this water feature in our home, and the last time I cleaned it was before October. After which I threw in some insecticide granules as we left for a long holiday. Sometime in January this year, I threw in the insecticide again without cleaning it. And I can't wash the thing now.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Addicted to ............

I'm not suppose to drink caffeine. I was able to abstain from tea with the first pregnancy (then again ate alot of chocolates - so what's the difference) but this time round.... I need to have my cuppa tea. On the average I can drink 1 cup or 2 in a week. I don't think it causes any effect on the unborn baby, right? Since it's such a small amount. But I just don't get the kick when I don't get myself that 'jiggle in the teabag' drink. I have no worry about sleep, I'm able to sleep.

** Caffeine . A stimulant found in colas, coffee, tea, soft candies, chocolate, cocoa, and over-the-counter and prescription drugs, caffeine has been a controversial topic in pregnancy nutrition for more than a decade. A 1980 study by FDA found that caffeine, when fed to pregnant rats, caused birth defects and delayed skeletal development in their offspring. At that time, although the human implications were unknown, FDA advised pregnant women to eliminate caffeine from their diets.
Since then, more studies have been done to determine the effects of caffeine on the fetus. A study of women in Costa Rica, where coffee consumption is high, showed a significantly lower birth weight for infants and a lower concentration of iron in mothers who were coffee drinkers. This report indicated that maternal coffee intake may also contribute to maternal and infant anaemia . **

The excited girl

My girl is so excited, even more excited than her dad with this new baby in me. Hubby don't touch my tummy as often as before (perhaps it was a first born that's why he used to be excited) and don't portray as much interest as my little girl.

She'll ask to listen to di-di almost everyday. Before you start sending in your congrats with a boy etc.. No, we are not able to see the gender of the baby yet. But that's what my girl insists. They say kids intuition are true, let's see. Her intuition on my ovulation day and pregnancy was spot on.

She'll tell me if di-di is sleeping. Sometimes being imaginative she'll tell me that di-di said something to her. Sometimes she'll tell me di-di is sleeping or farted. It's really funny to hear this coming out from a little girl's mouth.

Then once she even said she has a baby in her. This funny story came from mom. When she wanted to poo- poo, she told mom "mama (grandma) my stomach pain pain. My baby pain pain, I want to birth baby." When she finally poo-ed she said she had already given birth.(and it's amazing she actually used the English word "birth". I didn't expect her to know this word)

Friday, April 21, 2006

Date with Rosalind / How I spend the rest of the day

At Patara Thai

Was chatting with Rosalind on MSN earlier on in the morning, and then we decided to meet for lunch.

We haven't met up since a few months back, and anyway it's her birthday today, so I thought just nice to give her a birthday treat.

Girl and myself were able to get out of the house in time. When girl knows we'll be out galavanting in the streets, she'll be very cooperative. If not, I'll be screaming at her to go to the toilet; to pack up her things etc...
All was well, I bumped into Sunny (of Daintie Dames - one of the tailors for SIA kebaya) in the train. So happened girl chose a seat just opposite him. He recognizes me and was pleasantly surprise to see me.Anyway, we chatted all the way from Punggol to Dhoby Ghaut and then parted ways. * Mom will remember him as the friendly guy who offered her nonya dumplings. U see mom usually accompanies me yearly when I need to make my uniform; do my fittings etc...
Like I said everything was well. I was in a good mood until some stupid idiot woman had to spoil my day; spoil my image by screaming at her in the train station. Incident happened at the downriding escalator on the SMRT Dhoby Ghaut. My train (heading towards City Hall) was about to stop, whereas the other train was just coming in. Then the bloody idiot woman had to say "excuse me, excuse me" behind me. How can I move when I had to control the stroller on the step of the escalator? I'm not like any person who can simply move to their left or right to give way. Nevertheless I just inched my body to the side but I simply can't move the stroller. Idiot woman was rushing to be reincarnated, walked her way through that small gap. And then not even considering that a little girl's head was tilting to her right as she's talking to me - bumped into her, until my poor girl's head was pushed to the left side.Please lah... I don't know what kind of hurry she can be when the train just got in; it'll take time to stop and brake; then open doors. But then I said she's rushing to be reincarnated. A woman behind me was shocked too, she let out a "hhh..." I couldn't take it and started screaming at her in the train station, okay don't ask me to write down what I spouted at that bloody asshole woman. She never dare to look back at me anyway, people looked at me. In my heart I hope she'll knock her head against the glass panel as she's rushing into the train. Anyway I believe that she'll be punished in a way or another next time, so I'm comforted that I've scolded her there and then. Poor little girl leh... my heart break. The other woman who witnessed the thing was in the same train as me looked & smiled at me. But she kept looking at girl.
Bad experience aside, I met up with Rosalind and we proceeded for lunch at Patara Thai. The sparerib with coconut milk and dunno what is nice. We didn't order much except for that and a steamed seabass and rice. I can't believe she was full and my eyes were stuck to the dessert spread. Had my dessert, I'll be letting myself down if I don't eat it. Anyway I needed something to appease my anger.
We chatted; walked around Raffles City awhile before she had to meet her darling at Suntec. I didn't want to walk over to Suntec because of a certain flight of steps I had to walk down, I can't carry up/down her stroller.

We parted just outside Haagen Dazs, I needed my second refill of dessert. Wanted to try the new Melon flavour but it's not nice so I ordered Chocolate Decadence instead. Girl was asleep so I could slowly enjoy the ice-cream going down my throat and not stuffing it in like the last time. Popped by at MPH, nothing interest me. Strange,my legs were tired and I hadn't walked much. And worst still no seats inside MPH to browse through books. I tried squatting down to pick up something and when I stood upl I began to feel faint. It happened alot of times with the fainting spell. So I left the place and decided to find her a cardigan/sweater as she has outgrown it. Managed to get her a nice pink sweater from OshKosh. She woke up and then I told her I'll get her something from Bossini. Rosalind showed me the Sesame Street shirts inside, they were so nice. Anyway, I can't remember how many Sesame Street shirts my girl already have at home but anyway she didn't say no. I know she likes Elmo, Big Bird and Cookie Monster and did ask the SA earlier on (when she was asleep) if they had Cookie Monster - NO! So when I went in for the second time to pick her selection, she didn't object & she also asked for Cookie Monster. Umm........see how well I understand my little girl.
Then it's time to look at something for myself. I couldn't look at clothes coz' I'm going to outgrow it so no need to shop for clothes. The only next sensible thing is to check out my make-up - M.A.C. Make up makes any woman look different, and sometimes I really need it as I feel so ah-soh being a pregnated woman. Must be modern mom mah...............Nope! I'm not there to buy it but to check out colours and then ask hubby to help me buy it at the airport. He has additional discount for being a PPS with SIA, so I get to save. The last time he left, I didn't need anything but now I have a list for him to shop. Poor husband gotta usually help me lug back things I need from which ever countries he goes. And not forgetting the chocolates I always ask him to buy when he's back in Switzerland - and that alone is a 4-5 times a year trip. I hope I have the chance to travel with him before the baby pops out. I saw a boutique in Basel selling nice baby clothes.. I hope I can buy something from there.
After 'investigating' and trying to memorise the names I quickly left and stood somewhere to key into my handphone. Then we went to the bakery outside Market Place to get the Almond Cookies (we still have 2 packs at home.. PS. I just realised that girl - like me loves the Almond cookies and I didn't know she also love Oreo. Amazing thing is, we eat Oreo the same way. Ok, confirm we didn't bring home the wrong baby) We sat down at the fountain area while she had 2 cookies and then walked to the music shop before going for dinner.
Dinner was a simple fare at Foodcourt, she had her fishballs with rice and I only had fishballs. I found a seat and asked her to sit down while I order her food. And I was surprised & shocked that came to look for me. She has never done that before and I was only thankful that she turned to the right direction, otherwise I may lose her in the foodcourt. The lady who was seated in the next table was a little panicky, she got worried when she turned her head the other side and girl was gone. I was very thankful that she was actually looking out for me. Chatted with her and realised she has 2 nephews, which I told her "you're patient with children, so it's either you have kids on your own or you've been taking care of nephews/nieces". The 20 minutes was made very pleasant when you see a stranger playing with her; trying to make her eat. I can't believe that she was paying attention to girl.. I mean girl was munching so I put down the spoon. That nice lady actually picked up the spoon and helped me feed her. Girl was laughing and was not shy. People around us kept looking at her, especially this table with 2 angmoh men next to us.
So I had my fair share of meeting a bloody asshole woman and a nice lady. God has decided to send her to me in the evening.
Sadly, I didn't get to know her name. But most importantly is I never forgot to thank her for her help. Perhaps we might bump into each other one day. Perhaps not.. But it's nice to know that apart from the majority typical Singaporeans, there are still a minority who are very friendly and out of this world.

After dinner, we went to the toys section again. This time I let her play at the Lego station, while I sat on her stroller (she kept asking me "mummy why are you sitting on my stroller?" I answered "children wants to play so I gave up the place for them. But mummy's also very tired so I needed to sit down.") hoping that a Malay woman got the hint (obviously she didn't). She was not just sitting there, she was practically building a castle. Can't believe that she didn't even give in to a child.

We left for home at about 8plus. Train was packed, and I stood for a few stations. Strange? People around me pretended to fall asleep when I got in. One lady got up to disembark and another sat down. But after some time the "another" lady then saw me and offered me her seat. The others were in "pretending to sleep" mode. Anyway I needed that seat as my leg is killing me (dunno why... so tired. Maybe due to the lack of exercise for 3 wks)so I thanked her and sat down.

How I got my dialect name - Wee Li

I've been writing about things that is happening around me now that I practically forgot to write something back in the history. Nah! I will spare your eyes by not telling you when I was born etc.. unless you are going to give me a present. *laughs* But how I got my dialect name - Wee Li. It's a boy's name I tell you..........and only my brother could give me this name... ALL BECAUSE >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Wheelie And the Chopper Bunch was his favourite cartoon at that time. And he told mom "call the baby Wheelie" - which the spelling became Wee Li so as to look more like we're siblings. Wee Lin is brother; Wee Zh is sister. I've asked mom, "why is it that you listened to a young boy to name me? Somemore Wheelie is a male leh.... Luckily can name me Wee something.. otherwise I may be called Woody Woodpecker or Elmer."

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Hanna-Barbera's Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch revolved around a friendly Volkswagen bug named Wheelie and his girlfriend, Rota Ree. The two vehicles were constantly being antagonized by a rebel gang of evil motorcycles called the Chopper Bunch. Wheelie could not talk. He expressed himself through his horn and his windshield, which displayed his inner wishes and feelings (a beating heart, an “idea” lightbulb, the word “CHARGE,” etc.) Rota Ree could talk, as could all other cars in the town and the Chopper Bunch

The pilot for the television show, Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch, took over two years to produce and cost over two hundred thousand dollars. Publicly, the delay was blamed on extensive casting troubles for the voice of the lead character, Wheelie. Finally Donald B. Jones II opted to have Wheelie express himself only through sound effects and images displayed on his windshield. But behind the scenes production was also slowed by constant and furious battles between Jones and the background artist, Fernando "Monte" Montealegre.

Branding Montealegre's work on The Flintstones as "a direct affront to the principles of Futurism", Jones attempted to have him fired and then failing that, murdered, which landed him back in prison for six months where he continued to oversee production of Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch through daily half hour phone calls to the production staff.

He was released from prison on September 7th, 1974, ironically the very day that Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch premiered. After watching it through a department store window -- his TV having long been stolen by his former heroin dealer -- he resigned from the television show and committed suicide, citing creative differences. Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch aired for only one season from 9/7/74 - 8/30/75 on NBC.

Wheelie & the Chopper Bunch Episodes :
1) Get A Doctor
2) A Day at The Beach
3) Ghost Riders
4) Double Cross Country
5) The Stunt Show
6) Razzle Dazzle Paint Job
7) The Autolympics
8) The Delivery Service
9 The Infiltrator
10)The Big Bumper
11)Surprise Party
12)On The Town
13)Black Belt Fuji
14)Our Hero
15)Wheelie Goes Hawaiian
16)The Inspection
17)The Old Timer
18)The Copter Caper
19)Dr. Crankenstein
20)Bulldozer Buddy
21)Happy Birthday Wheelie
22)Wheelie, The Super Star
23)Down on The Farm
25)Carfucios Says
26)Mighty Wheelie
27)Camping With a Go Go
28)Lenny Van Limousine
29)Snow Foolin
30)Wheelie In Paris
31)Dragster Net
33)Boot Camp
34)Dr Cykll And Mr. Ryde
35)Johnny Crash
36)Wheelie and The Smoke Eater
37)Friday The Thirteenth
38)Wings Of Wheelie
39)Wheelie's Clean Sweep

*extracted from

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Met up with Wilma

Met up with Wilma, my long time friend from Secondary school, today for Tim Sum at Neptune Theatre. It was 3 years plus ago when we last stepped into the place. I remember I had my lunch with her on a Thursday and when Friday came, my gynae told me he needed to induce birth the next few days. I was so comforted and told her "I had my last good food before I give birth"

Anyway, Wilma and myself last caught up before Christmas. In between we contacted via emails but we never fall short of things to talk about today.

I'm thankful that she took her precious lunch time to dine with this ah-soh. Thank you dearie!

And she's agreed to be my Baby2's godma. At first she even asked "what do I have to do? Do I have to teach your child" Haha! Funny Wilma always make me laugh. My having godmas' for my two children are just for the fun of it, no need to pour tea or whatsoever. Neither are my two children baptised so it's not that kind of godma you're thinking about. In a way, I chose my two closest friends so that our friendship stays stronger that it relates to my children too!

What a stressful half an hour

Friends who know me well, knows that I'm a very gan-cheong (easily excited) person. It was only a simple job of getting tickets to the Sesame Street show but yet I was so stressed up for that 20 minutes.
I went into the website hoping to book good seats, but that is only when I had to wait at least 7-10 minutes for the seating plan to load to have an idea of where the allocated seats are. Was allocated the second row. All I wanted was the $65 ticket (exc.GST) and front row; and of course preferably near to the centre of the stage.But I couldn't get any, so what I did was I changed to the next Friday 4pm slot and tried to get good seats, this time I was given the front row. But being kiasu, I called them and asked them if I can book and choose my seats over the phone. They said yes but their system is down at the moment. Argh! And I was to meet Wilma in an hour's time. And then she called me back and said that no front seats available for the date I wanted. Haha! That's because I've held back in my computer with the allocated seats given. Thankfully it was still within the 10 minutes.. I thanked her for her help and immediately booked online instead. So now I have the front row for her to stand up if she wants, without the worries of being blocked. And seats are quite close to the centre of the stage.
I can heave a sigh of relief and wait for the show. But I'm just so excited!! Dunno if the show is for her or for myself.
But at least I've kept my promise of bringing her to a show, after missing out the earlier Sesame Street Show; Barney and Hi-5.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Video Montage 3 is finally out!

The 3rd part of my girl's montage is finally out after some delays. Perhaps it was a blessing that my Internet server was down yesterday, I couldn't check my emails; I couldn't go online. So the only wisest thing to do is to compete the 3rd part.

Will still have many more Parts to do, the crazy mummy is always snapping photos.

Click here to see

Monday, April 17, 2006

Chanced upon this tape -thought I had deleted it away

These are a few videos of our Europe trip last January.

The main idea of sharing the videos is not to show off, but to show my friends and readers how my little girl behaves when we're out on holiday.

My girl always gets alot of attention from strangers in Singapore and overseas. They say she's a cute girl.. (ahem. thanks to mummy genes. Hee!Hee!) . When we're overseas in any country, strangers like to play with her; touch her say she's pretty and cute. What makes people stop to look at her is the way she attracts peoples' attention.

You see, my girl seems to inherit this from me. Mom says when I was a little girl, I'd stop and dance whenever I hear music in the shopping mall. And many people got to know my mom from there as "the girl's mummy who always loved dancing". In this video taken in Vienna, she was dancing to the music of a busker. Click here People walking would look and smile at her, and we'll smile back. No doubt, it's through her that we usually have conversations with strangers in malls; streets; trains etc... It makes our holiday very interesting.

Another thing she seems to inherit from me is her friendliness. But I don't think I was as brave as her to run around without worries of being kidnapped by strangers. She's not worried! She runs around, plays with other kids. What's most interesting is that, kids will speak in their foreign language and she'll speak English and they seem to understand one another. Strange... not to mention, I've had alot of snapshots of her playing with other kids. Maybe one day when she's older, I should do a posting in every country that we've visited and asked the children to come forward to say ''Hello"again. Here is her playing with a girl in a subway station

It's amazing when I look back at all our holiday videos, I see the little girl growing up.

Grocery shopping Watch this and try to listen to what she's telling her daddy. Her words were not as clear and accentuated as now.

This set me thinking if I should introduce Western festivities

I think next year I will do this Easter thingy again. Maybe should be abit more hardworking by letting her do her own egg painting. And let the two kids find the eggs. (younger one should be 7 months.. and crawling?) No guess for who the winner will be - the one who can walk and find things faster.

Yet again, sometimes I really wonder why we do not have any intersting and fun occasions like in the Western countries. The only festivity that we Chinese look forward to is Lunar New Year, and that is only interesting for the younger kids (not fun anymore when you gotta dig your pocket for money to give away)

I liked the idea of kids going trick or treating during Halloween. Well, based on the scenerio in Singapore. Let me tell you although kids will be able to get more sweets with the high concentration of residents staying in a block. But they will end up with less, coz' sad to say Singaporeans 'don't greet their neighbours. They close their door and hide inside the house, as if some aliens are coming after them. (but not my business.. they want to suffocate themselves in there). And I don't know if I'm right but I've seen how unfriendly, uncultured and selfish Singaporeans can be. So Halloween is out of the idea. My poor girl may only end up with sweets from my family.
On the part about Halloween, I was very excited when we were in US last October. Coz' I was hoping for a chance to see Halloween in celebration itself. Our trip entails alot of driving (no present for guessing who's the driver. I was the one who gets to entertain girl behind and to enjoy the scenery and not forgetting be the navigator.) we saw many houses with the Halloween decorations up. Some were plain; some were interesting. But alas! We were so pressed for time we couldn't stop to take any pictures. But maybe our luck were not there, we only passed by houses in the evenings and how clear can that be, and in the daytime- we were usually on the Interstate Highway. Somewhere near to where Richard (our friend lives) there is a house where they did very intensive decorations. I remember seeing graveyards, a Frankenstein and some other eerie looking things. I asked hubby to drop by that place the next morning to take some snapshots before we head off in the opposite direction but he refused. So much for sportmanship! But somehow I'm glad I have my brother's pictures to share. Brother was in the US at about the same time as us but he had to head for training in Ohio, so we didn't get a chance to meet up.
Thank you brother for your photos. Click here

I like the way Christmas is celebrated too. Snow falling and carols echo in the air. I was lucky I spent my first White Christmas in New York in 1995. But I wouldn't mind if it snows here.

Hubby will sure say "you chinese leh. Want to be ang-moh..."

I think I was born in the wrong country.

The origin of Easter

Origin of Easter - A Christian Commemoration
The origin of Easter, a holiday associated with the observance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, is actually based on an ancient pagan celebration. Christians recognize this day as commemorating the culminating event of their faith, but like so many other "Christian" holidays, Easter has become commercialized and mixed with non-christian traditions like the Easter Bunny, Easter parades and hunting for Easter eggs. How did this happen?

Origin of Easter - Its Pagan Roots
The origin of Easter dates back to ancient times, not long after the global Flood recorded in Genesis 6-9 of the Bible. Nimrod, a grandson of Noah, had turned from following his grandfather's God and had become a tyrannical ruler. According to the biblical record, as king, Nimrod created Babel, Ninevah, Asshur, Calla and other cities, all known for lifestyles that promoted unspeakable evil and perversion. When Nimrod died, his wife, Queen Semiramis, deified him as the Sun-god, or Life Giver. Later he would become known as Baal, and those who followed the religion Semiramis created in his name would be called Baal worshippers. They became associated with idolatry, demon worship, human sacrifice and other practices regarded as evil.

The origin of Easter involves the birth of Semiramis' illegitimate son, Tammuz. Somehow, Semiramis convinced the people that Tammuz was actually Nimrod reborn. Since people had been looking for the promised savior since the beginning of mankind (see Genesis 3:15), they were persuaded by Semiramis to believe that Tammuz was that savior, even that he had been supernaturally conceived. Before long, in addition to worshipping Tammuz (or Nimrod reborn), the people also worshipped Semiramis herself as the goddess of fertility. In other cultures, she has been called Ishtar, Ashtur and yes, Easter.

The origin of Easter goes back to the springtime ritual instituted by Semiramis following the death of Tammuz, who, according to tradition, was killed by a wild boar. Legend has it that through the power of his mother's tears, Tammuz was "resurrected" in the form of the new vegetation that appeared on the earth.

According to the Bible, it was in the city of Babel that the people created a tower in order to defy God. Up until that time, all the people on the earth spoke one language. The building of the tower led God, as recorded in Genesis 11:7, to confuse their tongues to keep them from being further unified in their false beliefs. As the people moved into other lands, many of them took their pagan practices with them.

Contemporary traditions such as the Easter Bunny and the Easter egg can also be traced back to the practices established by Semiramis. Because of their prolific nature, rabbits have long been associated with fertility and its goddess, Ishtar. Ancient Babylonians believed in a fable about an egg that fell into the Euphrates River from heaven and from which Queen Astarte (another name for Ishtar or Semiramis) was "hatched."

Origin of Easter - Resurrection Day for Christians
For Christians, the origin of Easter is simply the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ about 2,000 years ago. According to the Gospel accounts, Jesus Christ, the true Messiah promised in the Old Testament, was crucified and resurrected at the time of the Jewish Passover. Since that awesome event took place, those who believe Christ is their Messiah have honored that day and often celebrated it with the traditional Passover. As the Gospel of Christ spread throughout non-jewish nations, among people who did not have a history of celebrating the Passover, the pagan rites of Easter gradually became assimilated into what the Christian church called "Resurrection Day." Compromising the commandments of God with the comfort of the world is as old as the nation of Israel itself. Actually, American history teaches us that Easter was dismissed as a pagan holiday by the nation's founding Puritans and did not begin to be widely observed until just after the Civil War. Those interested in a Christian view of American history and the gradual compromise of America's Biblical foundations may wish to read books such as The Light and the Glory by Peter Marshall and David Manuel.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Got an invitation to Alexandra's birthday party

Bought her a present from Toys R'us. Not suppose to say what it is just incase her mummy is reading my blog now.

Girl was so funny, kept asking me "mummy we buying present for that dunno dunno what name girl". She kept forgetting Alexandra's name.

Then I asked my girl if she wanted to buy a present for Alexandra as well. We went into Cerisi and I asked her to pick 2 hair clips for Alexan & another one for herself. She picked one for ALex and 2 for herself, I kept repeating then I realised she could be "buay gum guan" so I told her "okay 2 for Alex and 2 for you...

Can't wait for her party.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Dunno to say she's stupid or what??

Girl made me real mad late in the evening. Told her nicely to keep the cushions that she had brought down on the floor. I gave her alot of chances and was already fuming mad when I brought out the cane.
Started counting " Mummy is going to count to 10. You better pick everything up from the floor"
M : 1, 2.........why are you standing there? 1, 2.......... (did a few delays by interrupting my counting with my nagging and start counting all over again)
M : (after some time) 5, 6, 7 (pause)
A : (looked at me, about to start smiling and show off she knows something) 8
M : Then what comes after 8?
A : 9, 10 (smile)
M : (whack!)
A : Arrr..........(starting crying)
M : You want to help mummy count? Do it faster this time and I'll whack you again.

Sigh.............dunno to say she's stupid or what? Probably she thought I was stupid as I kept repeating the numbers.

Good Friday

Definition and etymology. Good Friday, called Feria VI in Parasceve in the Roman Missal, he hagia kai megale paraskeue (the Holy and Great Friday) in the Greek Liturgy, Holy Friday in Romance Languages, Charfreitag (Sorrowful Friday) in German, is the English designation of Friday in Holy Week -- that is, the Friday on which the Church keeps the anniversary of the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ.

Parasceve, the Latin equivalent of paraskeue, preparation (i.e. the preparation that was made on the sixth day for the Sabbath; see Mark 15:42), came by metonymy to signify the day on which the preparation was made; but while the Greeks retained this use of the word as applied to every Friday, the Latins confined its application to one Friday. Irenaeus and Tertullian speak of Good Friday as the day of the Pasch; but later writers distinguish between the Pascha staurosimon (the passage to death), and the Pascha anastasimon (the passage to life, i.e. the Resurrection). At present the word Pasch is used exclusively in the latter sense. The two Paschs are the oldest feasts in the calendar.

From the earliest times the Christians kept every Friday as a feast day; and the obvious reasons for those usages explain why Easter is the Sunday par excellence, and why the Friday which marks the anniversary of Christ's death came to be called the Great or the Holy or the Good Friday. The origin of the term Good is not clear. Some say it is from "God's Friday" (Gottes Freitag); others maintain that it is from the German Gute Freitag, and not specially English. Sometimes, too, the day was called Long Friday by the Anglo-Saxons; so today in Denmark.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

When your only daughter (baby) suddenly becomes an elder sister

Earlier on, when I was at McDonald's for my dinner, I witnessed how this little girl was taunting her elder sister. Their mummy was in the queue purchasing their food and obviously did not witness anything.
The little girl, about 4+ was taunting her sister, about 9+. Elder sister was obviously bullied but could not retaliate. Little girl continued slapping her sister's lap and run away; slap and run away. At one point the elder one manage to pull her back, little girl manage to let go and ran to the mummy. Then the little girl took her own water bottle and kindda wanted to splash water at her elder sister.

Just then, mummy came back. And the elder one was complaining to the mother - which I think she didn't hear. They move seats and the elder one was sent back to take the water bottle from the table where they were originally. She did it with a grudge. I don't know what happened after that as they were seated too far from me.

Then, I started to think about my little girl - who's still a baby in our eyes. For 4 years, she has been enjoying all the attention as she is the youngest in our family (the only grandchild on my side, and the youngest grandchild & only girl on husband's side). A baby is still a baby, how is she going to be an elder sister? And to think that she has been showing us her stubborn nature and temperament, will she change after being an elder sister? Will she be able to tolerate the younger sibling's nonsense? Somehow, when she reacted quite positively to the news of another sibling I was quite taken aback. And it really touches me when she comes up to me now and tell me "mummy, I want to listen to di-di." And she'll tell me "di-di sleeping." Or like what happened today, stomach growling of hunger and she told me di-di fang pi (let out gas)". Really funny!

Also, will I be able to discipline the naughty child without punishing the innocent child. But as you know, when a squabble happens between siblings, it usually happens without the parents' presence. So how are we to know who's telling the truth??
How am I suppose to divide my love for each child? At the end of the day, I'll be so exhausted and forget to show my love for my husband and myself!

So proud of her.And when I saw the look on her face after that.

After all the screaming and nagging at her for making a mess whenever she does the colouring art, I was pretty surprised that she did very well today. You see, I had left her alone for about 10 minutes while I rushed back to Yamaha to settle on her Music Wonderland class commencing in July. When I got back, I was surprised to see her neat work.

At the end of the day, usually the lady will put Rabbit sweets in the bag for the little children and hand to them the bag with their work. Today, the lady didn't do that. I was watching my girl's behaviour as she was standing so close to the lady and waiting for her piece to come out of the oven. When the lady gave her the bag, she kindda stood there and paused. Normally, she would run out happily. It was as if she was waiting for something.. Indeed she was, she looked at the lady but the lady was busy. Her facial expression changed. It was heart wrenching to see my girl like this. I don't know how to describe the feeling but when I saw that disappointed look on her face, I felt sad myself. I brought her out of the place and squat down at one corner to talk to her. " You were waiting for the Rabbit sweet sweet right?"
A : (nods her head and was about to cry)
M : I think aunty did not buy any sweets that's why she can't give you any.
M : Tell you what! We still have Rabbit sweets at home. Mummy will give you one when we get back home. Later on, mummy needs to go to the supermarket, we'll see what I can buy for you okay?
A : Umm..
M : (hugs her)

Sometimes I really wonder if I am contradicting myself. I object to her having sweets although I don't mind the milky Rabbit sweets.. but when I saw that look on her face. Inside me suddenly I see a small girl who "can think and express herself" is innocently punished. And in the end bought her something to appease her. Did I spoil her??

Yesterday, mom came by with crocodile meat and some chinese medicine for girl. She brewed the crocodile meat with chuan-bei and cordyceps. Tried the meat, quite nice actually.....

And she did not forget about her daughter as well. She knew that I was raving to her about the chwee kueh chaipoh. She made that and also my favourite marinated spicy chaipoh. She also brought along the marinated spicy lettuce, which I commented that it tastes like the Mayflower Resturant's (where we went as little kids) appetiser. Shiok!

Obsessed with perfection - Oprah Winfrey Show

Turned on the TV last evening and they were showing this on Ch5. For a moment I thought I was looking at a Barbie wannabe. She really looked like one.

Jenny is only 28 years old and has already had 26 surgeries. Jenny says she first became a slave to the scaplel after one critical comment from her then husband. "My ex husband told me that my nose was too big and my boobs were too small, so eventually I got a boob job to stop the comments,"Jenny says. Ï just moved from a bad relationship with him to a bad relationship between me and my reflection. After the divorce, plastic surgery became an obsession for me."

Jenny was just 25 years old when she had a brow lift. She's also had Botox, cheek implants, three nose jobs, veneers on her teeth, three lip implants, two boob jobs, three breast lifts, and liposuction on her arms, stomach, hips, thighs and knees. Jenny says that the total cost of her plastic surgeries is about $80,000.


Just be happy with your looks. If your husband tells you your boobs are falling. Tell him his penis is hanging and dead, and he should go for implants as well.

How Junior learns best - extracted from Straits Times (Mind & Body)

Shefali Srinivas finds out what works and what doesn't for kids' early brain development and social abilities

On Saturday mornings, the United Square mall in Novena fills up with children heading off for various learning activities - enrichment classes, creative classes, music, golfing, fencing and even classes for outstanding PSLE results.

The choice of learning programmes for children has never been as varied as it is today. Yet, this beguiling range of options can leave parents a little confused as to what really helps their child learn.

Dr Nicole Green, assistant professor of early childhood education at the National Institute of Education in Singapore, suggests parents should ask themselves these questions:

'Does the programme attend to my child's physical, intellectual, social, emotional and aesthetic development? Is the programme flexible to accommodate my child's emerging interests? Is it something that excites him or her?'

Research shows children learn better when they see 'learning' as interesting and engaging rather than a 'duty'.

Learning experts in the past thought the child was a 'blank slate' for the adults to fill with knowledge and skills. It was also believed that a child's abilities and brain development were entirely dependent on genes. Little attention was given to the child's environment and other influences.

Dr Green says newer research shows that brain development occurs through a complex interplay between the child's genes and positive interactions with peers and parents, nutrition, environment and other stimulations.

Brain imaging technology has also given us insight into how the child's brain develops. The first two to three years of life are crucial for brain development. As babies begin to see, touch and hear, the input from these experiences triggers chemicals in the brain that build connections between neurons - the nerve cells that carry information from one part of the brain to another. A secure environment where the parents interact with the baby is said to foster brain development while understimulation can curb the child's potential.

However, Dr Green also cautions against too much stimulation. 'This can overwhelm the neural circuits of a growing child, causing the brain to be less sensitive to everyday experiences - essential for a healthy beginning to life,' she says.

For instance, there are learning programmes that promise to have a child reading by age two.

Mrs Jayne Nadarajoo, who is director of Whitelodge Early Learning Centre, says she sometimes meets parents who brag about their child's ability to read advanced school books. 'I ask them, but can your child play?'

Mrs Nadarajoo believes in 'respecting children', and facilitating their development rather than 'programming' them.

She says that a child's personality should be allowed to develop through interaction and play. 'Otherwise you just end up with a robot.'

At Whitelodge, where the motto is to 'train the child to think', Mrs Nadarajoo treats the child as an individual. Children learn through experience and are encouraged to form connections, ask questions and decide how they want to spend their time.

These methods, used with her own children, build motivation and confidence.

She tells parents to guard against spoonfeeding. Instead, she suggests involving them in various aspects of life - be it grocery shopping, cooking or telling them stories about a holiday destination - all of which promote learning. 'The most important thing that parents can do to promote learning is to stay engaged with their child.'

Footnote from me:

After reading this article, I felt that I was reading the "old" me.

I used to believe that children's spurt from the early days till 3 years old. So that's the time to put it as much things into my girl's brain. I used to think that I'm going to send my girl for this and that classes.. to put her at the winning edge over other kids.
But what made me step back? First, it's the fees in every place that I'm going to send her. GUG, I can Read, Speech & Drama. Second, she's in full day school. I can only bring her for classes on weekends.
I felt that she has enough of stimulation from me everyday already. And if I need to send her for any classes now, it's only gonna be Phonics.I gotta look at things in a more realistic way. I let her enjoy her childhood as I do not want to make her think whatever has happened during her growing up years. School or the daily grinding I'm giving her is must be interesting.
I am not a hard-core "No supplementary lessons" person. I believe in sending them to supplements only when necessary. Also to have a mixture of fun besides just studying. And the rest of the job? Parents are the best teachers, trust me! It not only bonds time with your child, you can also teach your child according to his/her progress.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Irresponsible parents/grandparents

The last thing I wanted to hear from mom is another case of HFMD today. That makes a record of 3 in her school and you know what? All 3 are from her class.?!?!?
And coincidently the "unknown No.2 boy" grandma had revealed to mom it was her grandson who got it. And she was not convinced that her youngest grandson had gotten it as he had no fever; no rashes except for ulcers. The doctor certified he had HFMD and immediately both him and his older brother were brought back home. Grandparents couldn't tolerate the two kids squabbling at home and no matter what- is like forcing the doctor to certify that the child do not have HFMD. So doctor certified, and they gladly brought the two kids to school so that they can have some peace at home.Irreponsible!
Then the third case came up. So did the third boy get it from outside or was it really from the second boy, who could still be carrying the virus?
* And question is why only them - the Nursery 2??
* Is this the susceptible age to get it?
* The school is big, children share the same table/chair when rotating to have their meals. So why other kids not getting it?
* Although the school cleans the place thoroughly everyday. How thorough is that? And does individual teacher clean up their own area as well? I suspect that the 3 kids all got it from outside source, and choose to think in that way. But deep down inside, I'm thinking if santising in the N2 area is not clean enough.

And some idiot parents still wants to send their kids to childcare centres just for their own convenience. There are cases of parents whose kids are sick and they still insist on bringing them to school. Then when school call, they don't pick them home. One mother of a girl in my girl's class is like this. School called to say that she had fever, refused to bring her home. And you know what?? She could have called her mother (child's grandma) to pick her up to bring to see docot. Grandma owns the chicken rice stall just next to her school. Spreading the virus to other innocent healthy children in school is one thing. Another thing is the effect on the poor girl, had fever for goodness knows how long. We've heard of children getting fits if the fever is too high and not cured in time. Are they going to destroy their child's life?

Sunday, April 9, 2006

Home-bound for another week & I'm going crazy

Mom has given me a bad news this morning. Mdm Qiu informed her that another boy in my girl's class has HFMD. That makes 2 in her school, and 2 from her class. I think the second boy got it from outside, it can't be from the school.. Coz' Braxton was immediately sent home and everyone in school was okay for the next 6-7 days until the second case comes up.
Honestly speaking, I think it's the responsibility of each parent to ensure that their child are either home-bound or if they have no choice but to bring them out.. to ensure cleanliness at all times. Ever since the first case came up in her school, I make sure I carry my Dettol wipes besides my girl's wet tissues when we're out, and I also brought out the anti-bacterial handgel. I clean my girl's hands very often. And boils her clothes (darn! no wonder that dress is a little crumpled now) when we're home. Even cleaning the house with Dettol and spraying things with the Dettol spray. I think I'm going a little crazy.... I mean if there's any germs it should come from the outside not our home. But why the heck I took so much trouble to clean the house. Duh!
Anyway, back to the case. I'm sure MCYS will take action against any school which has a certain number of children with HFMD. But would it be fair to the school, if the children caught it outside somewhere and not in their school??
I wanted to bring her in to school on Wednesday but brother advised against it as she's still having her cough- which means her immunity system is low. He even offered to take leave to take care of her... Never mind, I told him to save his leave. If suay suay my girl kena it (goodness knows how long more before this HFMD dies down), he and my hubby will have to take leave/turns to care for girl as mom & me will not be able to do it. And we both have to be kept away from her....
Anyway hubby reminded that it's PH this coming Friday, so if I bring her in, she'll only attend school for 2 days. Might as well not bring her in. Err.... I know what he means but sometimes it's easier said than done. I'm the one who will have to do all the job not him and I'm really tired you know. What help I need now? I need a maid now!
Yah! Was looking forward to Pilates on Tuesday morning before my gynae appointment. But now, I can't. Mom has her doctor appointment on Monday & Tuesday and can't help me. Argh! No exercise again?!?!Should I bring her to the pool with me? But if I do, I can't swim for long coz' she'll be cold.

Very Impressed with Cathy

We went for a movie with our little girl yesterday. And I must say that the service in Cathy is good, let's hope they keep it this way.
When we wanted to proceed to the cinema, a lady told me nicely that no stollers are allowed in the cinema and it will be kept outside. Actually, it was nice of her to bring it up cause I would bring it up to them even if they had not mentioned anything. Then they offered to bring in the booster for girl.I did notice the usher coming in a few times showing seats to other patrons.
Halfway through the movie, girl needed to pee-pee. So I left and was surprised that someone was actually standing guard outside the door. And when I got back, the guy turned on his small torch wanting to show me the way back, but I declined his help saying I can find my way back. Hey! You don't get this in other cinemas now.
We left the cinema in the opposite direction from the rests of the patrons coz' our stroller is waiting for us outside. First time we even had staffs thanking us for coming to Cathy blah blah....

Friday, April 7, 2006

Clavinova & Stagea

I'm so impressed with the Electone Stagea. When I got my EL organ, they said that Yamaha will not have anymore electones as the technology has already surpassed. Then, the nightmare came when I actually tried on the Stagea . Wow!

I like the Clavinova too! Although I would want my girl to learn Electone Organ, I am thinking if it's really a good choice. If not, I'll let her learn piano and then I'll get a Clavinova. 2 musical instruments at home? Also abit crazy... not like I live in a big big house or what!?!

Say that again - Who's like a pig??

I can't believe that I actually forgot to post this statement from my girl. For 2 consecutive weeks, when the children sing to this song "To Market", they gotta snort like a pig.
Girl snort and then she turned and made a remark loudly "Papa sleep like a pig hor??" All the adults in class roared in laughter.Should tell my hubby that he's been made a star.

Thursday, April 6, 2006

Couldn't hold back my craving

One day was enough to kill me! I couldn't hold back my craving for Tim Sum, and made my way to TM at 12plus. Made a call to mom in the morning and asked her to join me, I can't have Tim Sum by myself.
Once there,Crystal Jade was definitely the first stop. I kept thinking about the spring roll; carrot cake and rice roll with doughstick when I was driving.
Walked around TM, avoiding all the Children's department as we wanted her to take a nap before her music lesson. Finally saw the flats I needed. Girl was cute and showed me the shoes saying "mummy, try this. This is very pretty." At one time I asked her which colour I should choose, she told me "pink, because you're a girl. Girl must wear pink." But she did show me one pair which was quite comfy so I bought that.
When she fell asleep then we checked out the Children's department in Isetan. Saw a Combi stroller which I kindda liked. Frankly speaking I have never liked Combi, maybe because I've seen many people pushing the flimsy light-weight ones that I thought all Combis are the same (scared my child fall), but when I saw that - I liked it. It can be pushed 2 way; can lie really flat; basket not as big as girl's previous stroller but still can do; and it doesn't cover fully. But mom and myself were experimenting on how to add a cloth to make it cover a little more and we managed to find a way. So..... made the choice to purchase it. Then mom surprised me by saying that she'll pay for it - $200. Take it as she buy a present for the baby. Err........... you know we didn't pay that much for my girl's stroller last time you know, I think it was like $150 that kind of range. But anyway thanks to mom, we have one thing less to worry now. I need to make my list on what other things I need to get for baby2.
We walked around the two malls and were tired. Sat down to have a drink and waited for girl to wake up from her nap. Mummies know best, I said she'll wake up at 5.30+ and she really did. We let her take her time to rouse herself up and then fed her her dinner before going for her lesson.
After her lesson, we had our dinner first before popping by at ToysRUs. But somehow girl ran to a big open area where there were a group of people doing line dance. She was swaying to the music and enjoying herself. Then she went with me to ToysRUS.
I needed to get her new books for her LeapPad & was happy that they're offering 20% discount. Grabbed 3 books for her. And then we made our way back.
As usual, after I dropped mom home. That girl started crying and wanted grandma to "stay in Pang-gol". No choice mom had to come with us.