Saturday, June 30, 2007

Mumbles mumbles

Spelling Tests
Woah! I'm surprised when Suzanna (Jachelle) sms-ed me that she's getting stressed up with the Monday's spelling test. I think Ms Clanna missed out the paper for Athena coz' I didn't get to know what are the words. Now there's spelling test every Mondays. Well, if you asked me if I'm stressed up? I should say a little, but I'll be more stressed up if she can't spell it out for me coz' the words are really simple. Monday's (2nd July) spelling test words : I, am, a, is, me And I had to sign her 听写 book as well. Wow! I didn't know they start them on this in K1 - but I'm happy.... (crazy mother) words are : 上,大,小,下. Simple words..but oh well they gotta start from somewhere.

People looked at me

I was attracting people's attention the wrong way today. Have been taking too much time making Athena's backpack, not much time to do at home anyway.. so decided that I should bring something to sew while waiting for her. Needless to say, I was worried that by sewing with my left hand, I'm going to poke the Indonesian helper next to me. Then everyone who walked past me, looked at me sewing a pathetic strap (bag strap). Suddenly I picture myself years down the road as this :-
Old granny sitting on a rocking chair and knitting away for my grandchildren. *gasp*

Art class

After every art class, the moment I step inside the room... I don't look at her drawing first- but her clothes. I dunno how she can get her clothes dirty when I let her use a , whereas all the other children use an apron, not much coverage, but clothes clean.
No exception today, but I'm surprised that she kept herself clean today. Umm.. let's hope she do this all the time.
Her drawing today. Can you guess what this is?It's a polar bear. And I asked her "how is it that your polar bear is yellow? Dirty bear is it?" Her very defensive reply "no..Mr Lim say can colour either white or yellow." I looked at all her other classmates, all painted white. But what can Mr Lim say? Anything is considered art what?!

Tum-tum-tum *whistles* Tried on a 3 tops (pre-pregnancy) and can wear it now. 2 pieces are a little looser, hopefully it's good news (slim down) and not coz' of elasticity. It took me a long time to slim down this time round, I wouldn't say I'm still satisfied with my weight, I'm targetting the weight prior to preggie with Athena. Fat hope? I don't know, let me try... I thought this time weight lost should be faster since I've to handle two kids, more busy than before. But no..... stubborn fats refuse to go. Will continue to exercise whenever I can and watch what I eat. Since I managed to lose some, I'm sure somehow one day I'll lose to my desired weight. One fine day, gotta dig out my kebaya and try it on..

Why do children love balloons so much??
Why? Especially those helium blown ones. I don't understand....Aricia seems to be more happy with the helium as compared to those balloons on balloon sticks.

Last chance / no peace
Tronged down Orchard to buy things from Robinsons, we have $150 voucher remaining so hubby decided to make use of it today - before the GST increases tomorrow.
Got one older girl who yaks (or rather complain) non-stop from home to Orchard to dinner time to mall to home.
In the car, she was heard saying "I'm tired", "I'm hungry", "but I cannot's so bright outside, there's sun outside", "I also want tu-tu (trying to act babyish)
In the mall, "I'm hungry", "I cannot walk....", "I'm hungry", "I want to go ELC", "here no toys".
At restaurant,"I dowan to eat chai-chai", "can daddy please bring me go walk walk around?" "Eeh... it's not sweet, it's sour."
blah blah blah............wah...non-stop yakking

Aricia? Wants bao-bao. She wants to play. Argh! How am I suppose to handle 2 kids all by myself??
Ps. Will update photos of them this week in their blogs and mine later.


How can I tell if my baby has allergies or just a cold?
Because the symptoms of nasal allergies (also known as allergic rhinitis) are much like cold symptoms — runny nose, watery eyes, cough, nasal congestion, sneezing — it can be tough to tell the difference. There are some telltale signs of allergies, though. Ask yourself the following questions:

• Does it seem like your baby always has a cold? (Colds usually wind themselves down in a week to ten days; allergies don't.)

• Is your baby's nose always stuffy or running?

• Is she constantly wiggling, wiping, or pushing her nose up in what doctors call the allergic salute?

• Is the mucus that drains from her nose clear and thin (as opposed to yellow or greenish and thick)?

• Does she seem to sneeze a lot?

• Are her eyes itchy, red, and watery?

• Does the skin under her eyes look dark or purple or blue (doctors call these allergic shiners)?

• Does she breathe through her mouth?

• Does she have a dry cough?

• Is her skin irritated or broken out in an itchy red rash?

If you answered "yes" to one or more of these questions, there's a good chance your baby is allergic to something in her environment. Kids with nasal allergies are also more prone to ear infections, asthma, and sinus infections.

What causes allergies?
An allergy is a special immune reaction to a substance in the environment. When a child with allergies comes into contact with one of these substances, known as an allergen — either by touching it, breathing it, eating it, or having it injected — her body views it as a dangerous invader and releases histamines and other chemicals to fight it off. These chemicals irritate the body and cause symptoms such as a runny nose, sneezing, itching, and coughing.

Possible allergens include food, drugs, insects, animal dander, dust mites, mold, and pollen. Depending on the type of allergy, it can cause respiratory symptoms (allergic rhinitis), skin symptoms (like eczema), or intestinal problems (from food allergies, for example).

The most likely culprits of nasal allergies in babies are:

• Dust mites — microscopic organisms that thrive on human skin flakes (nearly 85 percent of allergy sufferers are allergic to dust mites)

• Animal dander — those white flaky specks (shedding skin and hair) on cats, dogs, and other furry animals

• Molds — fungi found in wet, damp places such as bathrooms and basements

Some children are allergic to down and feather pillows, or chenille or wool blankets. And while most experts don't think children can be allergic to tobacco smoke, it can certainly make their allergic symptoms worse.

A child will inherit the tendency to be allergic, but not necessarily the specific allergies. For example, if one of your child's biological parents has hay fever or pet allergies, there's a 50 percent chance your child have some sort of allergies as well. That probability jumps to 75 percent when both biological parents have allergies. Family members may differ widely in the kinds of things they are allergic to.

If my baby is allergic, will I know right away?
Probably not. It can take time for an allergy to develop. Each allergic person has a threshold that must be met before an allergen causes a reaction, and this can take several months.

So if your baby inherited the tendency to be allergic to cat dander, she may have no trouble at all for the first few months she's around Fluffy, or she may have a reduced reaction. But then one day, when the exposure level reaches her threshold, her body will react and mount an offense.

Seasonal allergies to things such as pollen and grass usually don't rear their ugly (and stuffy) head until a child is about 3 to 4 years old.

How can I figure out what my baby is allergic to?
It takes some careful detective work and sometimes the help of medical tests to pinpoint the exact cause of an allergy. One clue may be when the allergy attacks occur.

Mold allergies usually develop during damp or rainy weather and can be hard to distinguish from colds. Dust mites or pet allergies often cause morning congestion throughout the year. Pollen-related allergies are more common in spring, summer, and fall.

Unfortunately, sending Fluffy away for a few days won't tell you for sure whether your baby has a pet allergy. Studies at Johns Hopkins University suggest it can take more than a year for cat dander to degrade in a room, for example.

On the other hand, if you take your baby away from the pet (on vacation, for example) and she seems better, then you have a good — but by no means conclusive — lead. (You'd also want to consider that your baby might be allergic to something else in your house.)

If your own sleuthing doesn't give you the answer, it's time to see the doctor. He'll examine your baby and ask lots of questions. If he believes the problem is allergies, he may refer you directly to an allergic specialist or he may suggest a blood test to measure levels of IgE (allergy) antibodies in your baby's blood.

Blood tests may be less accurate than skin tests, especially for infants. So if the blood test does suggest an allergy, the next step for your little sniffler is a skin test. You'll need to see an allergist for that.

During a skin test, an allergist applies small amounts of common allergens to your child's skin. If your baby is allergic to a substance, she'll have a reaction (similar to a mosquito bite) on that spot. Infants may have smaller reactions than older children, but the tests can still be very useful.

"Keep in mind that testing tells you what your child is allergic to at that point, but it may change as your child gets older," says Seattle pediatric allergist Frank S. Virant. If your baby has a negative skin test but continues to have allergy symptoms, have her reevaluated in six to 12 months.

How are allergies treated in babies?
The most important thing you can do is reduce your baby's exposure to the allergen. Here are the best ways to do that for the most common allergens:

Dust mites
Dust mites live in fabrics and carpets and are common in every room of the house. But most children are exposed to the most dust mites in the bedroom, where mattresses and pillows are veritable dust-mite condominiums.

The following steps may seem like a lot of work, but they really help. "Parents who take these steps might expect a 60 to 70 percent rate of improvement in their child's allergies," says Virant, "and this should markedly cut down the level of medication needed for the problem."

• Encase your baby's mattress in an impenetrable cover made of very tightly woven fabric, found at allergy supply stores. Unlike vinyl covers, these provide a useful barrier that's breathable and not crinkly. Avoid big, fluffy comforters and use blankets instead.

• Wash bedding once a week in hot water to kill dust mites. Set your water heater to about 130 degrees Fahrenheit before laundering bedding. Don't forget to turn the water heater back down (to about 120 to 125 degrees) afterward so family members won't scald themselves when they go to wash their hands.

• Avoid piling up stuffed animals in your baby's room — they're dust-mite magnets. Wash the few favorites your baby can't live without in hot water weekly or stick them in the freezer for an overnight killing frost.

• Dust and vacuum weekly or every other week, but make sure your baby isn't in the room when you do it. The action of dusting and vacuuming can stir up residual dust-mite particles in the room. Wet mopping can help prevent this.

• Consider investing in a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA (high efficiency particulate arresting) filter, which traps even microscopic particles that pass right through ordinary vacuum cleaners.

• If your baby has a severe dust mite allergy, consider tearing up carpeting and replacing it with a smooth floor.

• Clean or replace filters on furnace and air-conditioners monthly during seasons they're in use. Have heating ducts cleaned each fall.

Pet dander
If your baby is allergic to a pet, the only foolproof solution is to give the animal away. That's not an easy decision to make, of course, and, understandably, you'll want to consider it only as a last resort.

To keep the dander down, wash your pet frequently. (You can find shampoos that reduce dander in the pet store.) Also keep your pet off the furniture and out of your baby's room.

Use a dehumidifier and air conditioner when the weather is warm and moist, especially in a wet basement or other areas of your home where mold growth is a problem. If your bathroom is a mold factory, clean it regularly with mold-inhibiting disinfectants, such as a little bleach and water or a natural solution like tea tree oil and water. And consider investing in a better ventilation system.

Mold can often be found growing in closets, attics, cellars, planters, refrigerators, shower stalls, and garbage cans, and under carpets. Even a fake Christmas tree can harbor mold.

Are there any medications that can help my baby?
Yes, but don't give her over-the-counter allergy medicine without talking to your doctor first. He may suggest antihistamines and possibly offer you a prescription. Many of the newer allergy medicines have fewer side effects than other products on the market, though these medications are not approved for children younger than 6 months.

What can I do to prevent my baby from getting allergies in the first place?
At this point, there's lots of conflicting information about preventing or delaying allergies by postponing — or accelerating — a child's exposure to potential allergens.

"Someday we'll be able to look at genetics and really know what a child is destined to be allergic to," says Virant. "But the reality is that, right now, there's nothing that predictably helps."

Of course, if you or your mate is allergic to cats, you won't want a feline in the house anyway. (Ditto for any other allergy-causing animal or substance.) And keeping your home — and in particular your baby's room — clean and as free of mold and dust mites as possible is a good idea, regardless of whether your child has allergies.

Talk to other parents on our bulletin boards about your child's asthma or breathing ailments, food allergies, or skin problems.

When should I try to teach table manners?

Let's start by being rather broad in our definition of table manners. Let's call it acceptable behavior at the table. I hope that you are setting a good example from the very beginning. This means no arguments at the table and staying seated for the entire meal. It also means no television when you are eating. Don't complain about the food, don't share with your child the list of the foods you don't like and why. In other words, your dinner table (and lunch and breakfast) behavior should be pleasant, upbeat, and positive, and considerate of others at the table.
Whether you put your elbows on the table and how you hold your fork are issues that you can fine-tune later on.

When your child is beginning to eat in a highchair, do not tolerate intentional spills and food throwing. As soon as it happens, stop the meal and get him down, even if he hasn't eaten very much. The behavior will stop promptly, or at a minimum you will quickly learn that he isn't hungry.

As your child becomes a toddler, make it clear that he doesn't have to clean his plate or even eat anything, but that he is expected to behave. He may get down from the table and play quietly in the dining area, but he doesn't return to the table, and as soon as he misbehaves he is in for a time-out. Point out that this "time-out" is not because he wasn't eating, but because he was misbehaving.

By following these simple rules your child will soon want to share the dining experience with you and will learn good table manners by watching your example.

Developmental milestones: Understanding words, behavior, and concepts

Understanding words, behavior, and concepts
Your newborn can't yet speak your language or fully understand what you're saying to him, but he's a fast learner. Research shows that babies start listening to their parents' voices while still in the womb. Once born, your baby begins tuning in to your words and sentence patterns to figure out what you're saying. He also uses his powers of observation to learn about some of the more complicated things — like love, trust, time, and cause and effect — that exist in his physical and emotional world.

When it develops
Your baby starts to learn what others are saying and doing even before he's born. As a newborn, he doesn't know the precise meaning of the words you use, but he picks up on your emotions — such as happiness, sadness, love, concern, anxiety, and anger. By the time he's 4 months old, he'll recognize his own name, and by 8 to 12 months he'll understand simple requests such as "No" or "Don't touch." Around 24 months, he'll be able to talk to you in two- or three-word phrases. By 3, he'll have a vocabulary of several hundred words and a pretty good sense of some of the rituals and activities of everyday life, such as food shopping, telling time, and housecleaning.

How it develops
Newborn to 1 month
Every waking moment, your baby is using his senses to take in new data about the world he finds himself in. He doesn't yet have the information that adults and older children use to interpret what they take in, but he's building that store of knowledge every day. Many experts say babies understand more than most parents think they do.

As a survival skill, your baby stays emotionally attuned to the people around him. He can understand how you feel and what you're thinking by the tone of your voice, the set of your mouth, the pace of your breathing, the feel of your skin, and the glint in your eye. Your baby will form his version of reality from the way you respond to him — deciding he's worthwhile because you come to him when he cries, stare lovingly into his eyes, and feed him when he's hungry.

As your baby's motor skills advance, his memory will get better, his attention span will lengthen, his ability to speak will improve, and his social skills will become more polished.

2 to 3 months
Your baby continues to soak up everything in his environment. His favorite activity is watching what goes on around him, and he understands now that you will soothe, feed, and play with him when he needs you. He'll delight you with his first genuine smile. Your baby enjoys the response he elicits with his grin and comes to understand that smiling is one way to let you know he's satisfied. By 3 months, he'll add some gurgling sounds to his smile, initiating a primitive form of conversation with you.

4 to 7 months
Your baby knows his name now and understands that you're speaking to him when you say it. He'll even respond by turning toward you. He's becoming more attuned to your tone of voice, too. When you sound happy, he'll react joyfully, and if you speak to him sharply he'll become distressed and may cry. He's also beginning to tell the difference between strangers and people he knows, and he may cry when you put him in the arms of someone he doesn't recognize.

8 to 12 months
Your baby's beginning to understand simple requests. Say "no" when he tries to touch an electrical outlet, for example, and he'll pause and look at your face — maybe even shake his head "no" in return.

He's also testing your responses to his behavior. He'll throw food on the floor just to see what you'll do, and then file your response in his memory bank. Later he'll test the waters again to see whether you react the same way.

12 to 18 months
By 18 months, your baby should be able to understand and may use at least 50 words. (In general he'll understand a word before he's able to say it himself.) And he'll be able to follow your directions, even if they involve two separate actions — for example, "Pick up those building blocks and put them in the toy chest."

19 to 23 months
Your child is beginning to understand that his wants may not necessarily converge with yours. He'll try to assert himself — folding his arms resolutely under his armpits when you want him to hold your hand, for example.

He's also starting to understand simple concepts such as space and dimension. This means he can probably put together a basic puzzle now, and he knows the difference between a triangle and a square and can place each shape in its appropriate spot in a shape-sorter.

He's also figuring out cause and effect: He knows that when he pulls the lever on his jack-in-the-box, for example, a clown pops out. This new skill will come in handy down the road when he's ready to toilet train.

Before your child can give up his diapers for good, he has to make the connection between the need to empty his bowels and using the potty. He'll also understand that when he pulls the handle to flush, his urine and bowel movements will disappear down the drain. The process starts all over again the next time he feels like going to the bathroom. When he sees how proud you are of his attempts to use the toilet, he'll be even more eager to try it again.

24 to 36 months
By now your child has a pretty good understanding of language. Development experts say most 2-year-olds understand at least 150 words and add 10 new ones to their vocabulary nearly every day. Since language acquisition has become practically second nature, your child can now turn his attention to more complicated concepts that involve emotions.

Between the ages of 2 and 3, your child will understand the basic building blocks of relationships: love and trust. He knows that you and the rest of the family care for him and are on his side. He's learned these important concepts by the way you've treated him in the first few years of his life. By showering him with affection, responding to his needs, and keeping him safe, you've helped him become a secure and optimistic child.

By watching you go about your day, your toddler begins to comprehend some of the more complicated aspects of everyday life, too, such as food shopping, telling time, and housecleaning. He's also gaining a deeper understanding of how he should treat other people. If you want him to grow up to become a kind and helpful person, make sure you treat him and others that way.
*extracted from*

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Unfair treatment??

Am I being too unfair ?

1) Mom said I never bring Aricia out as often as I did with Athena. I used to bring Athena out quite often, so she said that I've deprived Aricia of this.
Not that I don't want to, but I'm rather exhausted day in/out with the two of them.
Sometimes I do want a breather myself and bring Aricia out, but she makes me even more tired (wants bao bao etc..).

2) I realised that Aricia has got only 3 video tapes specially dedicated for her. After that I used the same video tape for the both of them so that I don't have to remember switching the tapes about. Quite poor thing.. only 3 tapes.

3) Her Baby Book is still not done. Oh goash! Mummy's biased

4) Poor Aricia is going through what Athena did (flashcards etc..). But Aricia started on it much earlier than her che-che. No babyhood for her.

5) I do realise that sometimes I do spend lesser time with her as compared when with che-che. I do play and do what I need to do with her in the daytime, and then I leave the "putting to sleep" to helper coz' the che-che always wants me. I do not want to think too far ahead on how to cope if helper decides not to continue another 2 years with us... let's just take a step at a time, time being I need a breather, I cannot be bao-ga-liao for everything.
When evening time comes, I spend more time with che-che with assessment books, music lessons etc..... not much time for her. I can only play with her for a short while before she turns in for the night.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Fickle-minded & concert

It's no wonder Athena is so fickle-minded, she got this trait from me.

Jenny posed me this question on which instrument I'm going to let Athena learn. I have already decided that she shall go for the piano instead of the electone. Electone, can make you lazy coz' you tend to rely on the accompaniments (ya lor... like the mother)

Yes, will definitely have to buy a piano then.When hubby heard about it, he gasped "piano so big..where got space??" He was looking at the grand piano. Ai yoh.... of course not that lah! It's what I love but flat so small where got space? Unless he strike lottery and we move to a much bigger house. Wait long long............

Read her blog for the concert.
I was worried she couldn't play on the piano coz' keys are harder. But she didn't disappoint me. But she talked too much in class, Peggy had to stop her & Jachelle.Is she trying to get attention or too hyperactive liao?!


Mum thinks I'm mad having to introduce signing for Aricia. Oh well, they don't have to worry about her turning mute, coz' she's making alot of noise - so clearly she's perfectly normal.

Since the time she made a sign for bird, when she was suppose to be doing milk. And when the word bird came, she did correct.... not much progression on the signing.

Today, she surprised us when we were watching TV, the stupid noisy aircraft was flying above our flats (we live near the Seletar Airbase) and she did the sign for aeroplane. But in her tiny little hands, she didn't extend her little pinky so it looked like a "gun". Obviously she did it wrongly but hey! at least she did the action correct. Amazing isn't it??

Mental arithmetic - 心算

Will be withdrawing Athena out from her Speech & Drama coz' I don't find the teacher good. And I wouldn't want to go all the way to Act3 for her class, so drop it and going to replace it with something useful for her - I hope!
For those who managed to watch 小超人4 on Sunday - 24th, you may remember seeing this boy doing fast calculation. And something I found out from the school too - the girl I talked about in the previous episode, the one who can speak Japanese is also a student in the school that I'm enrolling Athena in.
Anyway, when I told hubby the decision, he said "you should have done it a long time ago." Argh! He try to act ge-kiang

Searched on more information on mental arithmetic and abacus(算盘) and realised that abacus is effective in the development of the right brain.
If you would like to know too ( can't remember if I wrote this down before) that I've read from somewhere that we should tap on children's right brain while they are still young. At 3, they still can be helped in tapping the right brain, but they're switching a little to left brain - logical thinking. By 4 or 6 it's predominantly left brain, coz' if you study properly too, at that age the children would have already started Primary school. By then it'll be difficult to tap on their right brain.

Abacus, it seems, can activate BOTH parts of the brain simultaneously.

Using the abacus also:

* Fosters a greater sense of numbers.
* Helps develop an intuitive understanding of numbers through their concrete representation.
* Fosters one's trust in the process of calculation by enabling one to observe it in action.
* Manifests the concept of decimal places and the progression of units by tens physically.
* Instantly accomplishes addition and subtraction when numbers are placed on the abacus.
* Improves understanding of compounded numbers (through the use of supplementary numbers for 5 and 10).
* Helps in developing the beneficial qualities of concentration, patience, and endurance.
* Fosters one's confidence in calculation.
* Uses a left to right calculation method, which makes quick estimation and rounding off possible.
* Works on the decimal rather than fractional system, an easy progression to digital systems.
* Develops mental calculation, which is the ultimate resource.
* Develops the right brain tremendously.
* Leads to greater mental capacity.
* Expresses large numbers simply and easily.
* Provides a sense of achievement as one's proficiency improves.

Abacus education enhances progress in various abilities. Scientific analyses have demonstrated the effectiveness of abacus training in improving the following six abilities:

* Ability to concentrate (Concentration)
* Ability to visualize and to be inspired (Inspiration)
* Ability to memorize (Memorization)
* Ability to observe attentively (Insight)
* Ability to process information (Information processing)
* Ability to listen and read quickly (Speed reading and listening)

Actually come to think of it, I think that's why my uncle in Muar and cousins seems to be able to calculate fast. Haha! You know the old folks use abacus - but it was those heavy big ones that can kill you in one throw. I thought I saw my dad had that before?? Where is it?
Geez... I can't believe they skip my generation in this abacus thingy.
Uncle's generation - know abacus
My generation - know what is Casio calculator, the one that can calculate cosine and whatever nots
My children - back to abacus, but mini ones.

Conclusion : No Shichida for Athena but now still 有得救.
I really hope it will help that playful Athena. At least she must prove to me that she's smart & a genius lah! I watched on those kids and turn to look at Athena, and start wondering what she's good at?!?!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Smile! You're on candid camera!

Caught Athena falling asleep while doing her assessment book.

Quite poor thing...........I sent her straight to bed without doing any music lesson.And it's only 7.37pm, maybe she didn't sleep enough in school??
Actually wonder how she can continue gripping the pencil??

Sunday, June 24, 2007


My little puppy -oops!baby is 9 months already. Hard to believe -really! And she's beginning to show us that she knows what she wants.

I want I want!

I must admit she's very determined (as what Master Tan mentioned) just like me. When she wants to play or touch something and you carry her away, she will start rebelling. I know all babies will rebel.. but this puppy (call her a chihuahua, small & fierce. Chihuahua's fierce right??) gets so angry she'll arch herself when you carry her away
or she'll bend down and try to bite you or start screaming in her already shrill voice [sigh... I really have no use for the baby monitor. Her voice is loud enough!] And that's not enought, she'll still crawl to where she wants to go initially no matter how you try to distract her attention elsewhere. Her temper is very obvious, all thanks to the curly locks which indicates she has a nasty temper.

Is she smart or dictative - you shall decide

Feeding her : Usually halfway through her meals, she'll make noise. It's time to feed her with biscuit. So, it's one hand with biscuit another hand with the spoon. Of course she'll turn her head to the biscuit but we'll quickly feed her her meal. She'll either eat or spit out immediately, but for sure she'll make noise so that you can to put in the biscuit in her mouth.
A few times I tried deceiving her by trying to feed her 2X meal and then one biscuit, but she'll show her tantrum. Bring your hand or if it's there and try to bite. Wah!

Playful. Too playful to be exact
Dunno how she survive with that few hours of nap per day. Still can play, want to make her sleep also can play & play. I normally leave that task to KZ, who can take her time to make her sleep, while I try to do some things in the daytime.
I tried once putting her to sleep and I fell asleep before her. I'm far too old to take her bounds of energy.

Training for the army??
KZ has told me many times that while attempting to put her to sleep. Aricia will pretend to sleep, then she'll crawl; stop; crawl; stop.
Sometime this week, I managed to see it for myself when I took over the "putting her to sleep" coz' KZ was busy. I thought she crawled on all fours but no.... she was moving and kept her body low, then pretend to drop dead by closing her eyes with hands and arms flat on bed, move and drop dead. You know what the army call it - leopard crawl?? Hilarious sight! No wonder KZ adores her so much coz' she makes us laugh.

More vocal
I am prepared with the fact that my two girls might take after the mother's chattiness.
Aricia seems to be vocalising alot of late when we tell her something. It seems like she's responding to us.
When the che-che didn't hold the lift door for us and almost turn her and me into roti prata, Aricia made noise and faced her che-che. Scolding her?? I dunno.... but you know it's like when you piece up everything, it seems like she's conversing with us.
I mentioned too, that on Thursday she was pointing to the Disney Princess pictures and making noise??
Sometimes now she does point with one finger and make noise whenever I show her any books or pictures - I guess depending on her mood. (wonder if she'll have mood swings like the mummy)

Wants everything that you're eating. Ice-cream, noodles, rice, and eat but still small!
Was eating my cheesecake when she suddenly stopped what she was doing, crawled and climbed on me. Che-che also wanted a bite so when the two of them were heads on fighting for the cake, mei-mei pushed the che-che away. Aggressive!Oh well, at least I know she knows how to fight for her own whereas che-che will be bullied by others. Sigh.. I worry about Athena.

Strict with her
Seeing how she behaves, fights (I know all children fight) with che-che. I think it will not take long before I will take her in hand. Even stricter with her!

What old folks tale is that?
KZ was telling me "Aricia's very smart, she play with her pee. My mother tell me children who play with their pee or poo are very smart." Huh? What tale is that? I told her all children somewhat will play with their pee and poo.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

I aint happy

Took the one hour while waiting for Athena in the morning to have my haircut at Kimage. One hour I thought was suppose to be enough time since I was the first customer and snipping shouldn't take that long for my already quite short hair. Okay, in the end I had to ask the hairstylist if she could stop first while I pick Athena up and I'll come back. Thank goodness the cut was still a little presentable when I rushed out (first time a customer running out of salon halfway - haha!)

Getting a new hairstyle suppose to be a happy thing, but I aint happy with the result. I don't know what's wrong and so I left the salon feeling shitty.

I knew what style-concave bob- I wanted and perhaps I didn't want to waste that one hour doing nothing, and taking another weekday to cut my hair. If not, I'd have headed down to the salon this girl (I saw her at the Dora show)

told me [but forgot to ask who's her hairstylist] or back to Reds.
The hairstylist in Kimage can tell me "every stylist cut this concave bob differently coz' of their skills". I feel like telling her that she's the last in rank of course, coz' she actually did a gradual slope and I had to tell her to cut it shorter but it was only less than an inch shorter. ??? Plus it looked not much different from my old "苳菇头"

What is wrong?
1) The girl's hair and May Phua's hair (in Mars Vs Venus) is fuller-looking
Of course you will say "you must blow your hair mah" Of course sometimes I blow my hair (old hairstyle), and when I do my hair looks full. So why now don't look full? The shampoo girl didn't do a good job? Or the fuller part is my sides which is now chopped off, so blow also like never blow at all?
2) May Phua's is not that slopey looking as the Dora girl but they look so nice. Maybe they are pretty looking and have good features that's why. I don't suit any hairstyle? - even sometimes I just let the stylist what they think is suitable for me - I end up looking the same. I know not everyone will suit another person's hairstyle, but not so suay until si-mi also not nice. Ai yah! shave my head botak - maybe that'll suit me.

Argh! Feel like going to the salon. But then dunno if can do it properly for me since my hair is already short or have to wait till it grow longer?

Some interesting thing I found out from a hairstyle magazine :-

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Late again!

Didn't mean to delay this posting, but it took me really long to post Athena's blog - all the photo editing etc... plus getting old liao - tend to feel really sleepy these days. Suppose to post it out on Tuesday, and then Wednesday, delay now gotta do mass update again and hopefully posted out today! (+ cheated on the date)

18th - Monday
Brought Athena to the Elmo & Cookie Monster Meet & Greet at Downtown East.
We bused down coz' she's been bugging me to take her on public transport. Anyway since there's a direct bus, I obliged her request.
I wanted to let her go the the playground first but being kiasu, I wanted to make sure I manage to get the pass - and the lady wouldn't even tell me what time "just wait for the DJ to make announcement" - so helpful?!?! So I promised her after I get the pass then I'll let her go playground.
Halfway through our lunch, Angeline sms-ed to ask if we're heading for the session, and to take a pass for her.
While waiting for them, Athena saw the horse ride which I gasped - $3 for a 10mins session. And knowing that she couldn't do it, I told her "no sweetheart you can't do this, it's very difficult." wrong approach, shouldn't be too negative towards her ability, should let her discover it herself. She wanted the carousel or car ride, I thought $3 is bloody expensive for something that simply turns round and round and I can save that $ + somemore $ and buy her something which she can see, rather than take a ride and forget about it. So I declined her request. Poor girl kept standing there to see the rides.
Am I really that bad to deprive her off such things?? But I do give her other kiddy rides - those 20cents kind. She asks for $1 ride, I told her I'd give her 5 rides in Punggol Plaza, she happily jumps down from the kiddy ride.

Athena found some ways to entertain herself, at the game arcade (no money involved). She danced around, took some photos.
When she heard that Alexandra is coming, immediately she told me "mummy, we must buy sweets for Alexandra." Somehow that has become our 'Standard Procedure.' It's strange, I thought she'd ask to buy sweets herself, she carefully selected what to get for Alexandra and made no attempt in hinting to me anything. Bad mummy again! Buy sweets for others but deprive my own daughter - no choice she's coughing now.

When Angeline came, I saw the difference in our behaviour.
First, I overheard her telling Alexandra "mummy already told you to choose only one." (and I never let Athena choose one!!) "You try the horse see whether you can move it or not. If not, you take the carousel."
Alexandra got on the horse and tried to move it. Athena upon seeing it - dunno if she's feeling rotten inside - after that whispered to me "mummy, I want to sit.." perhaps I have been too commanding and never thought of her feelings. Must be thinking coz' 'mummy knows best'. Bad mummy!
Then Angeline gave Alexandra the $ to go on the ride, I asked Athena to stay with me but Alexandra pulled her away. Angeline then paid for it, I wanted to pay back but she refused. Felt bad coz' she once paid for Athena's play in the playground. (I fight to pay with her also can lose, I think next time I must secretly pass $ first) I'm not the 贪心 kind, so no matter what must her in other ways.

The Meet & Greet session started, and only then they gave the pass. If I had known, I would have allowed Athena to go to the playground first. First they had a game, Athena's hand was up but she was not being called up the stage (quite poor thing. 2 other Meet & Greet sessions she did put up her hand but was not selected to answer the questions. I really wonder how she feels? Sad? Or.... dun have dun have lor.....? Alot of times, I was so tempted to buy her some things to replace whatever the prize was. Infact, at her last birthday I was so afraid she'd be sad for not picking up alot of things, so I kept some aside for her intending to top it up for her when she's not looking. Dunno why I'm feeling this way? Deprived as a child so I want to give her everything??)

Angeline seems to talk so calmly to Alexandra whereas I find my tone of voice is more... rough and perhaps tactless. Maybe coz' Alexandra is an obedient girl, Athena needs the 硬 and sometimes 暖 approach.
When we were both walking to the bus stop, Alexandra suddenly made a run and Athena followed suit. (they were running for the pavement)My reaction? Was to shout "Alexandra don't run. Stop! Stay there.. Athena don't run!" Whereas Angeline was still so calm (my heart was beating fast) and told me "Alex knows." Then she told her girl "Alex, you take care of Athena."
Huh? In my mind I was thinking Athena's the che-che leh?! Too kan-cheong mother, no wonder everytime the children (esp. Athena) is out with me, I never stop talking. I can't blame if my 2 girls take after me- chatterbox. Or I'm just acting too authoritative??

19th - Tuesday
Just started on sewing her backpack. Hope can finish it soon... so do other more important things. Mom will surely scream her head off at me, " can take the time to sew a useless bag when you should be sewing Aricia's rompers which are slipping off at the shoulder."

Music lessons: Her violin has improved, at least this time I didn't hear much of squeaking from her. I told Ms Low about her bow position, and she said it's alright to tilt the bow (hair), don't have to be flat down. And I've been telling Athena off all these while?!?!
For her YJC class, she was overheard being very bossy, telling one girl "you partner Shaun lah!" Haha! I think she's beginning to learn from me.

Celebrated Aricia turning 9 months on 19th. Got her a marble cake. Athena's coughing so didn't want to tempt her with a cream cake.

Argh! 3 more months to her 1st birthday and nothing much is done. Dunno why the slacking attitude, should be excitedly getting myself busy now. We plan to make it small scale for Aricia - but somehow I feel like so unfair leh......Athena's 1st birthday party was relatively big(in my context) . About 40 I think and I couldn't really entertain everyone well, but thankfully for any hosted party, my family - everyone chip in to help me entertain people. I'd prefer to have that kind of more warmth party = smaller number of guests.
If I did small, will she blame me next time for biased treatment?
So we'll probably stick to our families and Aricia's godmothers. So even if I have the theme in mind, maybe will not execute it coz' no children except Athena and Ignatius. Hubby's nephews are far too old to have cute goodie bags.Umm..... unless her 2nd birthday.

20th - Wednesday
There's a thief in our house!!
Someone stole our -

Who's the culprit?

Why? Athena apparently left her half finished bread in a plastic bag on the coffee table intending to bring to school. Aricia saw it, stood up, threw the bread about and it dropped out, picked it up and eat it.
And she was eating so fast - probably trying to hide evidence.
And she's quite comfortable standing for quite a long time
Athena asked me the day before to take photo for her outside her school. So brought along the camera and took a few shots for her. Nothing exciting happened in the day, was as usual busy with Aricia...
Oh yes, I remembered. I was playing Baby Signing for her. Taught her sign for milk, which she did in a funny way. Then a funny thing happened, I was out of sight while KZ was feeding Aricia lunch, she shouted "mum. mum you see. Aricia so clever... they show the sign for bird and she can do it!" As much as I would like to think my child is a super genius, I had to tell her.."no, she made this wrong sign earlier on for milk."

Fetched Athena from school and brought her up to mom's place for a shower.
They changed the alarm system code and never tell me.... I pressed and it didn't deactivate the thing, called my sister but line busy, haven't even finished dialing father's number and the alarm went off. One guy came forward looking at me.... darn! now I feel like I'm a thief and Athena's my accomplice, the getaway car is just downstairs!!

Poor girl, the moment I turned to look at her (I didn't even comfort her while the alarm went off) she covered her ears, frowned her eyebrows, mouth a little opened and then she screamed at me "mummy! why so loud............" as if the alarm is not loud, she had to shout at me in her loud voice.

Felt guilty for not accomodating Athena's request on Monday for the ride, I'm not a good mummy when she asked to buy one toy from ToysRus, I obliged. Shit! $22.90 or was it $29-90? - should have just given her the $3 ride!! Now she has this :- and the treehouse (sibling gift from Aricia) . Bought for Elliot a Thomas, he saw I bought one for Wei Teng sometime last week and Elliot asked me in the day "auntie, can you buy Thomas for me? Thank you aunty." I wonder if the other boys will start asking me... I should buy in bulk huh? Now I feel like Christmas season has been brought forward. HA!

After her music lesson, was talking with Suzanna and Peggy. Somehow Peggy mentioned that our brain has not only left brain and right brain. It has front and back, music is stimulating the right brain. Then rhythm is front, something is back. Sightreading is left brain - haha! I've none coz' now my sightreading(esp for bass clef) is really bad. Ai yah, if you ask me I've got none now since I keep forgetting things. Forget to reply sms, forget to reply phonecalls, forget what I need to do..
At the lift, Jachelle took out the snack that Athena gave her. And then she simply tear open the top part. My reaction? "Ay? You never ask your mummy whether you can eat or not?" I can kick myself for making such a remark! Her mother never said anything, and I kapo say it. As if I'm her mother. I'm really either too commanding or too motherly - which one?

AT home was so engrossed in her backpack that I continued sewing. Actually it's quite fun and I feel like making one small one for Aricia, and another Diego - orange colour - for Ignatius. Not that it'll look nice or good.. but hey! (at least it's sewn with pricked fingers, risk myself sleeping for the next 100 years until my Prince Charming comes) it's handmade.

Athena asked me "mummy, my this bag can put in alot of things or not?"

Me : No

Athena : why?

Me : Coz' this is hand sewn, I don't know if it can hold on the weight. Better put in lesser things ok?

Athena :ok?

21st - Thursday
Athena asked to go pasar malam on Monday night but had to delay until today. So we didn't do much homework and then I whisked off with the two alone.

I just managed to do the sling - those Moms in mind kind - by sitting Aricia on the side. I tell you I'm so super stupid! I've had the slings since Athena's time, and can't do well........actually can't blame me also - my kids didn't like it. I thought since Aricia likes to cuddle close to someone she'd like to be in the sling. But no..........when she was a baby, she's just like her che-che, screamed her head off for "turning off the lights for her". I had to put her head out!! And only today I tried it again, it worked! Aricia didn't struggle.
Okay, sorry for the sidetrack. I went off with the sling and coz' of my guilt - ended up buying things for her. Argh! I spoil my children!! Found a guy that can do personalised keychain, so since my 2 girls have such unique name that I can't any keychains or whatever nots anywhere, I decided to do it for them. And when I got home, I realised I forgot to do one for Ignatius.Argh! Athena asked to go to the play area. I let her be and she wanted the bouncy castle. $ gone!! In the night, she gila gila spoke to me in her funny angmoh-ish mandarin. Asked me to read a her a book, and in that sentence she used majority english. Then a funny statement from her..
Athena :妈妈,妈妈,我小便好le(4)

Athena :妈妈,妈妈,我cha(1)我的屁股好le(4)

Me : huh?
Athena : (paused)
Athena :妈妈,妈妈,ko-ko-pok (our endearing term for her private part)in chinese 叫shen(3)mo(4)

Hubby : ko(1)ko(1)po(2)
(all bursts out laughing) - I don't have to wait until I prick my fingers and sleep for 100 years, I'll fall from my bed in laughter and knock myself unconscious.

The most amazing thing happened in the evening. Aricia was looking at the Princess stickers. I asked her who's who. She didn't use her hand to hit the paper but she was pointing with one finger and making some noises - as if trying to talk to us. Then asked her "which one is you / che-che/mummy etc....She actually pointed all different characters. And she pointed the moment I finish every statement and she was making noises. It's as if she's having a conversation with me.

22nd - Friday
This morning then I remembered I was suppose to make a trip down to the YP Fiesta. Forgot to inform KZ to help me cook Aricia's lunch the night before, so grabbed the grinded rice to mom's place to cook. Mom did the cooking in the end.. haha!
Thought since I'll be out today, I'll bring forward some of next weeks' errand to today.

Bought CDs for them (again) and was told that Hi5 is probably coming this September. Yippee!
Innoform has such a good customer like me. Open up my drawer and it's almost entirely from Innoform Wanted to try Aricia out for the Cover Baby contest, which is a hit! As I was queuing up, this lady behind me was asking me how old is Aricia and asked if I'm going to let her try the crawling contest. I said no, she can't crawl fast. She then commented that her son is over the age but the guy allowed, so they are looking for babies. She helped me action to the MC that I'd be joining the contest.
Once photo is taken, I went to fill up the coupon and he was pointing to me the direction where I'm suppose to submit the coupon. As I was looking for ?what staff? - was a subscription booth, bumped into Ros. But I needed to submit the coupon asap, so actioned in a *oops* rude way that I'll talk to her later. Submitted coupon and then went back to look for Ros,
chatted awhile, surprised that Sven is not out with her coz' she's suppose to be bf-ing.Yah, but people need breathers at times.
Then the contest started, only 5 pathetic participants. But still spilt in 2 groups, the lady's son and Aricia is in Group 2.
I kept telling Aricia : "you don't siah-suay(embarass) your mummy ok?"

They needed 2 adults to go up, and to think I asked Ros to help me take video + photo. (Ros : the videos and photos turn out alright. You're not an idiot to use an idiot-proof camera. Haha! Anyway, thanks alot for your help.) . So no choice have to be thick-skinned to ask if she minds helping me. Must strategise mah! She put Aricia with her, I must be on the other side what! If do opposite, surely won't move at all.
The moment Aricia saw me on the other side she started crying. Good news! means my girl can crawl to me lor..........but I was proven wrong. I heard the MC mentioned about "cry" - is like asking whether I want to continue the contest. Ai yah heck lah, she cry and all babies cry what?!
Contest started and the two of them -Baby Joshua (10+ months old) and her didn't crawl at all. They stayed in that position.

Narration in concurrent with the video

Aricia : (looks)you calling me?

Joshua : (wolf whistles) yes babe
Aricia : what's up?
Joshua : I want to ask....
Aricia : ah ha, what?

Joshua : Ai yoh... why the two ladies there shout so loud? So noisy

Aricia : (looks infront) one of the lady there is my mummy

Joshua : (looks at her) actually eh... eh... I want to ask you for your number?

Aricia : (looks at him)huh?
Joshua : your number (turns to side in embarrasment and smile)

Joshua : ai yoh... so shy how to ask

Aricia : my number huh? It's 123456789

Joshua : (mimicks writing on the floor)is that lady with the irritating keys your mother?

Aricia : yes

Joshua : Oh let's go (crawls)(thinking that he'll try to go to mummy - me to win mummy's favour)

Aricia : ay! wait for me

Joshua : wah... si bei tired. I only crawl awhile and I'm so tired.

Aricia : I lagi more tired

You can see what happened in the video clip. They both didn't move,
My girl got stucked to the mat infact Joshua moved towards her.
There's no time limit but seems like they really don't intend to move, so MC said we can move forward but cannot touch baby.I was acting like a gila mummy, the keys didn't help (which is her favourite) then I started taking whatever else I can think of that she likes to play with from my handbag, my camera pouch (which is a cloth from my kebaya) ; my handphone; my Gucci wallet - which she can open. OMG! tissue paper. Si bei crazy mother, I was shouting so loud on stage.
Joshua responded better to me, he completed his crawl. She didn't.
I thought maybe she's blur, maybe her dress is in the way. Whatever it is, I didn't expect her to come in first since she crawls really slow. It is a good try and she was enjoying it (I think), coz' she looked at the audience (end of video), sat down almost in the middle of the stage, looked and then waved to them (I think some ladies were waving to her). Haha! Hilarious. Got some laughs from the audience. Pity didn't catch that on video.
The royal Miss Baby Universe wave

Got shots of the two cute babies together. And photographer was taking shots of her, while she's in her own baby world on the side of the stage. Received comments that she's cute and pretty, should enter her for the contest blah blah blah. One even tell me "can be our cover baby" " that is if she's selected, " I added. Of course lah! Which parent don't want their child to be on the magazine cover??
The frumpy-looking me with our future Miss Singapore
Ai yoh.. next week better find a day to cut my hair, been delaying it かわい!Caught on camera by 2 photographers, but by time i took this, one of them stood aside
Was contemplating if should renew my subscription, and then caved in when I saw the gifts. Wow! Five years of subcription liao!
Anyway, Ros and I chatted a while more before we parted ways.

I had to meet Godma2 awhile before starting to run my errands at Raffles City.
Tired Aricia looking like a crab. So cute! Passer bys looked at this gigantic crab
Ever since the last time she mouthed the word bye-bye (bah bah) about a month back? I've been trying so hard to tell her to say it again. Today, she suddenly surprised me when she said it. Wah! Had to wait so long.... can buy 4D liao! Infact, in the evening, she mouthed other sounds when she wave. Hopes she does it again tomorrow and in days to come.
The selected photo for the contest. She had a few smiley shot. Really help that she's a Miss Smile-A-Lot
Am going back to Coverlooks to get more of other photos. At the same time maybe should make use of the 2 free coupon for photoshoot for the children? See how, I was thinking of nicer shots from KidsPictures (@ Forum) for Aricia, and I still need to bring Athena for another Princess shot

Sunday, June 17, 2007


One family, many languages
Athena was jumping around the house singing in Japanese, and then hubby asked her "do you want to learn Japanese?" My girl quipped in immediately, "yes!"
Although I've been talking about letting her learn foreign language and tried persuading hubby. But when he finally is open to the idea, I made a step back. (weird mummy)
It means I have to pull her out of some course, which obviously it should be the English S&D and Art. But then I need to put her in mental arithmetic soon, so I don't think we can cope with 2 other classes in replacement with the 2 current classes now. It's the distance - I'm so lazy, I don't want to travel from place to place.
Anyway, back to the foreign language, I'll see how it goes. So what if she learns? There's no one to practice with what?! And I'm sure the old folks will say I'm crazy, we're not even Japanese; can't even speak our dialects what more another foreign language. Maybe when she's in school, she can pick up 3rd language coz' by then she probably will not attend anymore enrichment classes apart from her music lessons. I'll see how things go. For all you know, tomorrow I might enrol her in a Jap school.
Hubby then joked "Athena's going to learn Japanese, then Aricia learn what? Burmese?? (bursts out laughing)" - can't imagine that little girl speaking Burmese.

I'm a bad bad mummy
Told myself that I shouldn't be pulling Athena out of school too much, but I ended up teaching her how to pontang school thrice this holiday. I may have to let her skip school again tomorrow.
At first I didn't feel so guilty until I learnt that her teacher is still teaching * gasp*
Speaking of which, Clanna is doing more than what Ms Chan did. She's already doing number bonds (thank goodness)!

Sometimes she can be a darling, sometimes she drives me crazy.
Sometimes she loves her sister, sometimes she bullies her sister.
But she's all the time hungry!!

I dunno why, that girl keeps complaining she's hungry. I think she's greedy lah! But I tell you, she's so horrible. After her lunch, she can eat 2 buns + milk. If only, she can give a little of her weight to mei-mei.

This girl knows what she wants, has her mind of her own. She yelps just like a puppy - in her sharp voice when she's protesting.
Funny girl with all the funny actions. She's started in closing her eyes tight and open & then smiles. Charming little girl.
Oh! that girl is a fast learner siah! She needed double aid (walker + we hold her) in walking with the walker (as shown in the video below) a few days ago, then today she did it on her own. [video was taken from a few days ago to today]
Funny thing happened today, I wanted to catch her on video, she got so distracted and kept looking at me. Then she fell - lookout for it at the end of the video.

Some photos of her today, and other videos over the week:

Same clothes, different baby

Athena taken on 25th June 03 (7 months old)

Aricia taken on 12th June 07 (8+ months)

Friday, June 15, 2007

Dug out

Since I wrote on Alexandra, thought I'd dig out some photos of them taken together over the years.

I do have one taken in 2003 sometime in May, when the two of them are babies but can't seem to find it in my disc, probably I was still using the old "need film" kind of camera.

Seems like too - Athena always bullies Alexandra. Haha!

See how much and fast they've grown

A date & a playdate

Pulled Athena out from school today again, and I hope it's the last time.. already pontang school thrice liao this June holiday.
Today, thought she'd have fun playing with Alexandra so brought her along.

Needed to buy Aricia's clothes detergent, so headed to Century Square. Had our lunch first at Sakae Sushi - where else?! Boring... shopping is boring especially when I'm not buying things for myself. I am beginning to hate shopping malls!

Proceeded to Ikea, Athena's favourite playground, to meet Angeline and Alexandra. We exchanged CDs, Angeline was suppose to pass me the Signing Time but she brought out alot of CDs from Shichida - so I can save $ on that. I was still asking her if she lets Alexandra listens to foreign CDs coz' I have some I can pass to her. (but OMG! she has far more foreign language CDs than me, can't compare with her! Spanish, German, French, Japanese - wow! I dunno what shit I'm getting myself into by enrolling Aricia in Shichida. GD + Shichida = I don't have to rest at all; CD player keep playing and playing - burn my house down from over-usage.)

While the kiddos were in the playground, we chatted in the Cafe. So much to talk about.....without the children interrupting us or us getting distracted with them. I only hope Athena didn't end up picking up balls in the playroom.(she always does that, dunno why.......maybe she wants to be a cleaner when she's older??)

They get along so well
Since I'm on the way, I dropped them at TM - they were heading for the Fantastic 4 show. I asked Alexandra for a hug but she kept running away, and then when her mummy kept insisting she should hug me, she playfully went to hug Athena. Haha!