Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

What does the year 2010 hold for you?

Are you expecting better relationship with people?  Better income?  Happier than 09?

Here’s wishing everyone a happy 2010!

God Bless.

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas is here...

Christmas is of course very special to most kids...
My kids are no exception... They love the presents, the food, the gathering with other kids...


Ah Boy's first Christmas celebration.

Talk about gatherings, its amazing how women manage to keep friends from every levels and stages of their lives, as far as from primary school, secondary school, tertiary and working lives all gathering every year for all those major seasons like Christmas and Chinese New year. But now as the number of kids has outnumbered the total number of parents add together, we find ourselves meeting more often for occasions like full month celebrations and birthday parties.

Last week's Christmas weekend, I was unusually excited, reason being... I finally got the chance to pop open the bottle of red wine which I've been trying to find the right occasion to open it and share it with the other guys.

The evening started slow and quiet as the mothers are busy stuffing the kids with food they each have prepared for the pot luck feast.

The highlight for the night, beside being the gift exchange, is the violin performance by Isabel and her friend. Ally wanted to be in the limelight too, so I gave her a tambourine to create a beat for them.





We clapped and cheered for them... but the lesson I learned is at the end of the day, when I was washing up preparing for bed. Isabel came to me and asked me... "Daddy, did I do well tonight for the violin perfomance?"

I then realised, that all those cheering and clapping that she get at the end of the performance doesn't mean as much to her as the approval and praises she get from her own parents.

I gave her a big hug and a couple of kisses telling her "You did very very well, and I so proud of you."



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Monday, December 21, 2009

JB Trip

We didn't get around to book a long distance tour as we planned for this holiday due to the fact that we couldn't get our leaves from work synchronised, but as we promised the girls a trip, so we booked a hotel in JB for a weekend shopping trip.


We found hotel Mutiara, formerly known as Holiday Inn, the rates are good, very accessible to many shopping areas. We like it being next to Holiday Plaza, famous for its "Home Entertainment" selections.


We checked into the hotel, and the kids were all excited about the room and the bath tub.
Normally I wouldn't allow them to jump on beds, but since we are on a holiday... so why bother stopping them.
I brought the kids to look around the hotel checking out its facilities...

The Gym is very well maintained, although it looks like it was purchased when Rick Ashely was still a farm boy.




The pool... is wet...

The children wadding pool is as big as the bath tub in the room as seen above with the 2 girls standing next to it. Besides sitting in it, there really isn't much else they could do.


At 11th floor with no other tall buildings to block our view, we can see quite far ahead from our window. But I wouldn't call this the best view I've ever seen.
The next place we headed was Aeon Tebrau, a shopping arcade with Jusco as their anchor tenant. The place is also favorite to many Singaporeans as its new and big.

We settled lunch at their Kenny Rogers.


Although the place was only less than half filled, the staffs seems to be always busy with something. Isabel has been trying to help me get the waiter's attention for quite a while before we finally placed our orders.

We did more shopping, Ally did more whining... she's only interested in the hotel room, the moment we're out shopping... even before stepping out of the hotel lobby, she's already whining to go back to the room.
Ironic thing is... I remember doing the same thing to my father when I was her age.
But the poor thing about Ally is that she has sensitive nose. She coughed the whole night when she was using the hotel pillow and quilt. The next morning, she was so tired, she had no appetite for the spread of Intercontinental breakfast buffet.

After a last burst of shopping, we checked out of the hotel and drove home.

It was a hot day. At 3pm, even the air condition in the car don't seems to beat the heat scourging through the car's windows.

Slowly but surely, we made our way through both customs and back to home.



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Monday, December 14, 2009

Dinner on Boat

We had a chance to dine on the Riverboat which is docked in Mairna Bay.


The boat looks small but the interior is rather cosy.


We were excited of course… the last time we ate on a boat was on a cruise many years ago.


The boat was as stable as it can, but occasionally it still swayed to the waves created by passing by boats.
 
That caused Isabel to be very uncomfortable.  She couldn’t eat and had to close her eyes to rest for most of the night.
 
We left after two hours.

Painting Room

Inspired by my father, who is in his late 60s, but painted the house by himself... I spent my 2 days of leaves painting 1 room... the Study Room.

The last time I had it painted was when Ally was born. Over the years the kids have been adding a fair amount of colors and decorations with crayons, color pencils and stickers. Cleaning the walls have faded some parts of the walls.

I estimated it should take me about 6 hours without break to complete 2 coats of paint, completing before my lovely wife comes home giving her a pleasant surprise. But I did not factor in the 2 curious kids pestering me to let them help paint the room, or every 10 minutes they'll pop in and ask "Daddy are you done?", or they'll be going through stuffs that I have stored away for years.
Ya... the worst is that I under estimated the amount of barang-barang we have in there. Just imagine... it took me 4 hours to rearrange back everything the next day.


Changing the color from Lime green to light yellow

I remember using only 1 pail of 5 litre paint for the room the last time I did it. But this time as I used a different brand, it was thicker and doesn't splash back as I rolled the roller. But it also means that I am about a litre short.

By after dinner, I was only one and a half coat done... and about to be out of paint. I rush down to the shop and grabbed another 2 cans of 1 litre. By the time I declare the room complete, it was already passed 11pm.

The room looks much brighter with the fresh coat of paint.
Its not one of my best work, but the effect isn't bad at all.


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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

To the Zoo

As I looked back, I realized that it has been a year since we've brought the kids to the zoo. I've heard of many new features added, especially the "KidsWorld" where the water play area is especaily attractive to the kids.

For the whole week, the 2 of them have been saying "I can't wait to go to the Zoo!"

We promised them games and quizes along the way to make learning more interesting, so days before, I have been doing some "research" on the net, planning a different route to hike through the zoo as I noticed that we have been going to the same route every year, seeing the same animal and missing the rest.

I copied the list of animal from the zoo's map and compiled into a list with serveral pictures inserted, printed it complete with spaces for them to do drawings.

I also looked through some website to look for quizes for them to answer.

On the morning, the kids woke up promptly and got ready. On the night before, I prayed with the kids for good weather, and God is good, the weather was very pleasnt throughout.


Upon arrival, the kids were rushing us in, running along to see the first animal. I tried to explain the rules of the quizes and the use of the compiled list of animal but they were not really listening anymore. They look like that drank Red Bull for breakfast instead of milk.


We arrived at the kidsWorld at about 11.30am, not wanting to be caught in the frantic lunch hour queue, we decided to have a earlier lunch at the only eating place there... KFC.

To keep them entertained while we went to queue for the food, the kids studied the map for the route we are to embark later.

The Water play area is the main attraction in the kidzword. At any one time, there must be close to a hundred kids splashing in the shin high water, cooling themselves in the heat of the mid day.

Everyone had fun in the area. Ally braved through many of the splashing water.


The older sister took care of the younger ones as they played along.



Ally went up the water slide 7 times


After the play area, we continued to complete the route, the kids were starting to lose interest as they were feeling tired.

We sort of rushed through the rest as we walked by the animals, stopping to view those that are really interesting.

It was an awesome day, I did my best to entertain the kids and make it fun, in the process, I think there is stronger bonding between parents and kids. Which is what its all about.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

baby baby

I was looking at Ally's photos when she was 4 months old baby, I realized they all have their unique features and bland of good looks


Ally blessed with a head of specially silky hair. She never look messy even in her messiest hair days.

Jared is taller than all his sisters comparing in their same months. Even his nannies in the Infant care is also saying that he is taller than babies of that age.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Ah Boy growing up

This is Ah Boy Jared. Now he's 18.5 weeks growing strong.

His grip is very strong, able to hang on his own weight. I remember Isabel was able to do the same at the same age, she could hold for a full minute before losing the grip. I believe Jared has the potential to do better.

video

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Friday, November 20, 2009

3rd in Class

I don't think I've ever got top 10 in my class when I was in primary school... even for the kind of standard 30 years ago. Now, they have raised the standard of primary 1 to an astonishing level which I was kind of worried for the kids.

The first time I saw those text books and its content, I knew I would not be able to do it 30 years ago...

But I'm proud of what Isabel has achieved, being the top 3 in her class.

She scored:

English = 91 (Band 1)
Chinese = 96 (Band 1)
Math = 87 (Band 1)

Her school has an Annual prize presentation day to honor and award those that has achieved well academically. She was there to receive her trophy and a certificate of commendation.

I know I've pushed her hard before her exam with lots of past year papers printed out from the Internet, given her more attention to the point of neglecting the younger ones. But this is the payout... Somehow this trophy meant more to me than it does to her.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ally's Concert

Its amazing how 2 sisters are so different in characters and the way they think and do things even when they are brought up in the same house.

The elder sister has always been fond of dance and songs. She did her Kindergarten concert performance twice and during the weeks of rehearsal, she practised at home every night, even taught her sister the whole song and every move that comes with it, so that they can practise together.

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Last weekend was Ally's first performance in her school's Kindergarten Graduation Ceremony. For weeks, she has been rehearsing her dance moves in school... and only in school.


We have been trying to get her to show us the dance or sing the song but she simply refuses to do it.

Her only reply... "Watch the concert."



During the concert day, she remained calm and collected. But still she doesn't want to reveal the dance move.



When we arrived, there was already a long queue of eager parent waiting to go into the hall the watch their precious perform, we were ushered to the second floor for seating. But I sneaked out before her turn to perform and went looking for her to film her preparing for the entrance and also inform her where we are seated.

When she came out to perform, I can see that her eyes were darting here and there looking for us. When she saw us, her smile lite up her face.

She did 2 items, both of which we watched for the very first time. She did very well even without any rehearsal at home.



Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Outdoor movie screening.

Last friday at the lift lobby, I happened to chance upon a poster that was informing of an outdoor screening of the movie "Transformer: Revenge of the fallen" over weekend at 8pm. organized by one of the local religious organization.

I thought it will be fun to bring the kids for this outdoor event, let them experience the old fashion entertainment that my father used to bring us to.

Hours before the show starts, they were already keep checking with me, reminding me not to miss the time.

As my memory for such outdoor screening is still at about 30 years ago. I remember bringing my own chair and sat in the grass field with my father watching "The God must be crazy". So I packed a foldable chair each for girl, a bag full of tidbits and a couple of water bottles.

It was a cool night...



We walked to the event location but found a huge tentage serving close to a hundred tables of dinning guests. But I don't see the screen showing the movie...
After asking a couple of guys who are completely oblivious of such things, but I managed to spot the screen in a corner behind the building.
The first thing I noticed was that its a cement floor... Then I noticed that there were chairs provided too.

I pulled a stacked of 3 chairs and found a spot not blocked by anyone, once we are settled down, girls were asked for the tidbits.


45 mins later, Ally was fidgeting... by the first hour, she was asking when are we going home.
She fell asleep half hour before the show ended.

I thought I should be able to watch the ending, but 5 minutes before it ends, Isabel said she need to go toilet.
I gave up on the movie as thought I should get a head start before the crowd starts to move. So I woke Ally up who immediately protested that she's too tired to walk and demanded to be carried.
And so I carried Ally on one shoulder and a bunch of foldable chairs and a bag of tidbits on my other shoulder, Isabel hopping by my side, keeps telling me she need to go.
All in all... its not a bad experience, if they were to show Hannah Montana or any Disney Princess movie, I'm sure the girls will be able to stay longer.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Happy Birthday Isabel

As promised, we brought Isabel to Swensen for ice-cream on her birthday.

She chose her usual favorite strawberry flavored ice-cream while Ally never missed a chance to get her Sticky chocolate.



In the evening, we celebrated again at Grandparent's place.







HAPPY BIRTHDAY ISABEL!
How fast she has grown... it seems like it was only yesterday that I watched her born in the hospital, realizing that my life is never the same again.
Now, she is half way to teen-hood, I just realised how much I missed those days when she was small and super cute... and I used to carry her and walk around showing her things. Talking to her, she would return it with a smile.
My wife asked me the other day, who do I think will get married first. I really hate to think that far. As much as I know that one day this will happen, I know more importantly is that I cherish every moment with them right now...
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Friday, October 16, 2009

Flower Girl

Ally has been asked to be the flower girl for a wedding last weekend. As her father, I couldn't have been more honored and proud for her.

All my 2 girls have been flower girls at least once every year for the past 4-5 years. The elder girl did her fifth tour last October and has sinced retired from it. The younger one is doing her 3rd tour this year... this will be her first solo... as in without her sister.




At the waiting area, the makeup artist did the makeup for her before she goes down for the rehearsal.



The veteran "retired" flower girl, Isabel, stood next to her and "supervised" the makeup process giving her sister tips for the performance later.


A few days ago, Ally was starting to worry because this is the first time that she is doing it without her sister. But we managed to convinced her that she'll do fine.



On the actual day, she started to have more confidence, especially after the makeup. Everybody said she is the sweetest and the most calm flower girl... very "Pro".
Now she say she wants to do modeling.
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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Email

Kids learn fast...

We set up an email account for Isabel so that she can practice typing and structuring sentences while communicating with others in writing.

Every now and then, we will write to her or also encourage her to write to her god-mother or to my sister...

Not long after she started, she already knows some of the functions that I don't even know existed. Changing the skin, changing background, altering the fonts... She was now teaching me rather than the other way round.

Its really interest... just like if I were to pass her my PSP, she'll be passing level after level by end of the day without much instructions.

Like I said... nowadays, kids learn fast.


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Saturday, October 03, 2009

Oouch! It's painful but I Like it.



It has always been Bel's wish to have a pair of earring . So, as her 7th Birthday is approaching, her 姨姨 asked if she wants to have her ear pierced as a present. And after much thought, she agreed to it.

However, when she saw the "gun".... She turn to me and said," Mommy, I very scare"!
Ally, on the other hand, is very excited. She insists that she also wants to have her ears pierced.


You can see from the above pictures on the girl's expression after the piercing.
Now, the girls can't wait to show off their ears...

Jared's First Hair Cut

Lately, I notice that Jared's hairs been dropping quit a bit. And very soon he'll be bald. So we decided to have his hair shaved.

Jared is a brave boy, he is calm and composed didn't cry at all although he did protest a bit when the hairs drop onto his face.





Ally on the other hand, was shocked when the barber starts shaving Jared's hair. She thought Jared is only going for a trim! She started saying that she wants Jared's hair and within minutes, her eyes were red!

When we leave the barber shop, Ally is already crying over her brother's hair. That's how much Jared really mean to her.


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Times flies even when you're at home!

Life at home been rather busy with little Jared around. But I must say the bond that binds us together is beyond words can describe. Jared is now 10 wks old and weights around 6kg. He can now make vowel sounds like "a", "e", " o" ... etc
I just can't wait for the day when he can giggle out loud.



Friday, September 25, 2009

First Trophy

This little girl has just won her first trophy in her life...

She was in a "Sandwich Making Contest"in school, organized by Gardenia the bread maker.

Her team came in 3rd, they each got a trophy, a loaf of bread and a $10 voucher from Popular Book Store.

They made Ham and Cheese sandwich and decorated it with Orchid and some ingredients that she couldn't name it.

She's proud of her achievement... so am I.


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Ah Boy

"Haaa the short hair Joker (Daddy) is back..."


"Who?... Me?...
You talking to me?"




"Awww... man...
Its morning again?..."