May 31, 2011

Auto repair

When I was driving my old Iswara, I used to frequent an auto repair shop in Seapark. Besides the usual car service where engine oil and filter was changed, being an old car, I visited the same shop on many other occasions for minor repairs, since I find that the shop is quite honest and reasonable in their charges.

I stopped visited that shop when I changed to my current Naza, and only went to Naza’s appointed service agent, in order not to violate the warranty. Few years back, there was a problem with the radiator and my car was in the affected batch so I got my radiator replaced.

And now, since the warranty period has lapsed, someone recommended an auto repair shop near my house, which specializes in Naza models. Besides the reasonable pricing, there’s also the convenience of them taking and delivering my car back to my doorstep.

May 30, 2011

Beach party

Yiu Yiu finished her mid-year exams last Thursday, and customarily, the last Friday of the school term is party day. This year, the theme is Beach Party. I had been busy at work, and also preparing revision sheets for Yiu Yiu, and waited till the last week before thinking about her costume, and decided to go simple by just making a raffia hula skirt. Simple as it seemed, it still took me two late nights to complete it. Went online and bought a floral head band and lei. And matched these with a straw bag and her sunnies.

Each child was to bring some snacks to kindy for sharing, and I made some egg sandwiches.

I had a 9am meeting on Friday, so again, I missed the fun, and delegated the task of taking photos to hubby.

With her classmate who came as a, well, beach

With Tung Tung, who goes to the same babysitter

With Teacher Kathleen, her 5yo class teacher

Making funny faces

Saying thanks to the Lord before eating

Interesting hat

May 28, 2011

Yan Yan – 19th - 22nd month update

I have not been diligent in keeping a record of Yan Yan’s development – I started with monthly updates, then decide to do it bimonthly, and now, the last post on Yan Yan’s development was done four months back! So I think I’ll do this penultimate update post, and round up with another post when she turns two in two months.

19th – 20th month
Since she bathes standing up now, she’d scream whenever I rinse shampoo off her hair and water runs down her face. Funny coz she wasn’t like this when she was younger. There was once when she tried to run away when she saw me reaching up for the shower nozzle after shampooing her :-) She’s also obsessed with the toilet roll, and many-a-times, would pull the toilet roll until it ends up in a pile on the toilet floor.

I was away for 10 days in March, and had fervently hoped that she would have weaned herself from my breasts, but no, when I came back, she still remembered her nen-nen and continued suckling to sleep and when she awoke during the night. Sigh! I must have dried up by then, coz I didn’t even need to pump the whole time I was away. But good thing is her intake of formula had increased – sometimes, she would even ask for milk-milk up to 3-4 times a day at the babysitter’s, and I’m definitely not complaining.

Although she still doesn’t speak well, she understands most of what we tell her. She developed a liking for singing for she would only sing the last syllable of each line, like so:
想要飞呀飞 却飞也飞不

Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder what you are

21st month
Her molars are finally sprouting! I had been quite worried to the extent of thinking if I need to take her to see a dentist. Haha! She still doesn't brush regularly but I know I should make it a habit.

She got acquainted with Mr. R.O.Tan this month. I don’t remember having to use Mr. R.O.Tan on Yiu Yiu this early so this girl is definitely more spicy than her che-che. I didn’t use a normal cane, though, coz I didn’t have one at home. Instead, I used the balloon stick, and as a result, one of the two welts was visible for days. Truth be told, I felt really bad seeing the welt for so many days but it probably didn’t hurt as much – she only cried for 2-3 minutes and was back to her usual self after that. And though the welt was visible, when I touched and asked if it still hurts, she kept saying no. I was reprimanded by hubby and even the babysitter’s hubby for that! The good thing is, she’s afraid of the cane now, and would say 不要 repeatedly, and stop misbehaving when I wave it in front of her. Thank goodness I haven't used it on her again since.

The raised welts, about 30 minutes after the beating

The welts, still strongly visible the next morning, though no longer raised. The one on her upper arm took days to fade.

She knows how to say sorry when asked to, and does it while patting the head of the person she wronged :-)

22nd month
She can speak quite a number of words now, but some are comprehensible only to us. She loves to rummage through her che-che’s lunch box to look for food whenever her che-che returns from kindy daily. One day, she was happily eating the leftover red bean bun in a corner, and when caught in the act by the babysitter, she smiled cheekily and said, “Umm…yummy!”

She can wear her shoes properly, and knows which shoe goes to which foot. Many-a-times, we purposely put them in the wrong order but this girl will know and switches them to the correct side before putting them on. We’ve started teaching her to say please and thank you, but she still needs reminding most times.

She loves her che-che to bits, and loves to follow whatever her che-che does. And whenever she’s offered a snack or vitamin gum drop, she’ll ask for two and give one to her che-che.

I was in Jakarta for a few days two weeks ago, and when I came back, when she asked for nen-nen, I told her it’s finished, that it’s empty. She suckled nonetheless, but after few seconds, looked up as if it felt awkward, and stopped. She asked a couple of times after that, and each time I told her it’s empty, and she would still suckle for just 2-3 seconds, and pull away. It’s been more than a week that she didn’t ask for her fix, and she doesn’t need to suckle to sleep anymore. If she stirred in her sleep, on all occasions except for two when she was extremely cranky, I only need to pat her back to sleep. Looks like we are on the way to successfully weaning her. Yay!

She’s diaperless at the babysitter’s but not at home. Mummy and papa are just too lazy to bother with cleaning up after her in case she has any accidents, so we still keep her on diapers. And she hasn’t started complaining yet.

She’s a much better eater than her che-che, but slower milk drinker. Each and every time, she would finish her food faster than her che-che, and finish her milk slower.

May 21, 2011

Protecting mei-mei

Yan Yan is an extremely stubborn and 野蛮 child, and Terrible Two has not even arrived!

Whenever Yan Yan misbehaves and mummy and papa scold/punish her, Yiu Yiu will quickly jump in and say, “Don’t scold/beat her la. She doesn’t understand yet, she’s just a little baby!”

Whenever Yan Yan throws herself on the floor and cries when she doesn’t get her way, we will just ignore her. Yiu Yiu will get upset and say, “Why you all don’t love mei-mei? Why you all don’t bother about her?”

Once I got really angry with Yan Yan that I left her in the bathroom and shut the door behind her. Naturally she cried her lungs out. Yiu Yiu got so upset, and with tears in her eye, pleaded for me to let mei-mei out.

She loves her mei-mei to bits, and for that, I’m thankful.

May 20, 2011

Teacher's Day

Teacher’s Day fell on Monday this week. I’ve never done anything for Teacher’s Day the last two years – the first year it just never crossed my mind, and last year, I only realized it was Teacher’s Day after the date had passed. Since this is the final year for Yiu Yiu in kindy, I made an effort to do something, so I ordered these chocolate lollies, and printed a simple card with the name of each teacher at the kindy.

Yiu Yiu was pleasantly surprised when she saw those treats last Thursday. And when I asked if she wanted to distribute them the next day or wait till Monday, not surprisingly, she couldn’t wait – so off the lollies went to the teachers last Friday. I had a meeting in the morning so hubby took her around to give to all the teachers who’ve taught her the last three years. He passed the rest to her class teacher to distribute, but apparently, Yiu Yiu said her class teacher took her around to distribute to everyone :-)

With her class teacher this year (top left), 4-year old class teacher (top right), her current Mandarin teacher (bottom left) and 5-year old class Mandarin teacher (bottom right). Her 5-year old class teacher was not around that day.

May 18, 2011

Yiu Yiu’s birthday party this year

On the way to the Empire Shopping Gallery for her kindy mate’s birthday party recently, I had this conversation with Yiu Yiu:

Yiu Yiu: Mummy, this year I want to celebrate my birthday in a very special place. Can you guess where’s the place?
Mummy: Sure it’s Jungle Gym la.
Yiu Yiu: No!
Mummy: No? Hmm…then it must be McDonald’s la (she likes McDonald’s, though we visit it very infrequently).
Yiu Yiu: No!
Mummy: Huh?!! No again?!! Then where can it be? At your school?
Yiu Yiu: No!
Mummy: Huh?!! No again?!! Aiyo! Then you have to tell me, coz I really don’t know.
Yiu Yiu: I want to have my birthday party at our house’s playground.
Mummy: Haha…are you serious?
Yiu Yiu: Yes.

It doesn’t seem like a tall order. The playground has few see-saws, swings, and a huge equipment with slides and apparatus for climbing, and crawling, which should be enough to keep the children occupied. But it being a public playground, I'm not sure if parents would mind. And there’s the weather to think about. Hmm…

May 16, 2011

Birthday parties

Yiu Yiu attended three of her kindy mates’ birthday parties so far this year, excluding those who may have celebrated at school. Here’s a recap of the parties:

Picnic by the pool – March 12
This was supposed to be a picnic by the beautiful pool side of Ameera Condo, and each family was given picnic basket containing sandwiches, Danish pastries, curry puffs, a packet of Cheezel Bizkitz, bananas and packet drinks. Unfortunately it rained cats and dogs when the party started so all the families had their picnic inside the host’s condo. When the rained finally subsided, we proceeded to the pool for some water fun.

The children also played some games organized, before taking a shot at hitting the piñata. It ended shortly after the singing the birthday song and cake cutting. I also met this gorgeous mummy for the first time, as our daughters are in the same class this year.

Jungle Gym – April 24
This was the second time we attended a party at Jungle Gym, the first one being quite an elaborate one last year. As usual, the children worked out an appetite playing in the gym, before ushered out for their snacks, singing birthday song and cake cutting.

Kizsports – May 7
This Kizsports was previously located at the old wing of 1-Utama, and they are now at Empire Shopping Gallery. This was our first time there, and I find the playing area rather small compared to 1-Utama. The children played inside the playland for about 30 minutes, before being ushered into the game area for some games.

It was snack time after 30 minutes of fun, before the customary birthday song and cake cutting.

May 13, 2011

Bento #206 – #210

More recent bentos:

Egg tart, heart shape cocktail sausages and bear-shaped guava.

Chocolate mantou, heart shape cocktail sausage, corn on the cob and tulip rose apple.

Red bean pau, corn on the cob, fishball balloons and wedges of Mandarin oranges.

Heart shape pasta in Bolognese sauce and wedges of Mandarin oranges.

Chocolate mantou, fishball and cucumber skewers, corn on the cob and wedges of Mandarin oranges.

May 11, 2011

Bento #201 – #205

Some recent bentos:

French beans wrapped in bacon, chocolate mantou, corn on the cob and tulip rose apple.

Blueberry muffin with fishball and cucumber skewers.

Steamed loh mai kai, corn on the cob and checkered apple.

Fish fingers with potato croquets, edamame beans and a wedge of guava.

Chocolate mantou, cocktail sausage in the shape of candy, corn on the cob and checkered apple.

May 08, 2011

Chamang Waterfall and Genting Strawberry Farm

The children woke up early the next morning, excited with the thought of going for a picnic at the waterfall. We had breakfast at Bukit Tinggi Village before driving about 30 minutes to Chamang Waterfall. It is quite an awesome place.

Trees are marked with their common and scientific names

Close-up of the rapids

A huge signboard with statistics of drowning incidence over the years, and various sign posts reminding visitors to keep safe.

We went back to the apartment to shower and checked out, before having lunch at Bukit Tinggi Village again!

It was already close to 4pm when we left Bukit Tinggi so we decided to forego Colmar Tropicale and headed to Gohtong Jaya to visit the Genting Strawberry Farm. It was a first time for the children, and me as well, visiting a strawberry farm and picking strawberries.

Only a small section of the shrubs was open for visitors to pick the berries from, and I supposed since it was a long weekend, there was not many ripe, luscious berries left so we only picked about 10 berries, and paid RM6.00 for them. Surprisingly there were quite nice, not that sour.

Little Red Riding Hood?

We reached home at about 7pm, and the girls konked out very early that night :-)

May 06, 2011

Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary and Deer Land

Hubby was away for the long Labour Day weekend, and I had resigned myself to staying home with the two girls, and scratching my head thinking of how to keep them occupied and keep them out of mischief. Then on Saturday, I found out that BIL was also away, so sis and I thought it’d be nice to go for a short getaway with the children. We wanted somewhere near, so Port Dickson was an obvious choice but since it was such a last minute decision, all the hotels that we wanted to stay in was fully booked.

Then Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary came to mind, since I’ve read so many mums blogged about it. And I thought since we were there, might as well visit Colmar Tropicale and Genting Strawberry Farm. Then I remembered seeing a signpost for a waterfall near Bentong when we took the Bentong – Cameron Highlands road back to Ipoh during CNY. Whoa! Suddenly we had so many places to visit. Since it would be impossible to do a day trip, we decided to stay a night at Bukit Tinggi.

So after breakfast on Sunday, we started our journey and reached Selesa Hill Homes at about noon. We quickly checked into our two bedroom apartment before continuing on to Kuala Gandah, since the activities with elephants take place at 2pm. Still we were late and were only given the red tags instead of yellow which would allow for interaction with the elephants.

The swimming with elephants was canceled that day, as apparently the water level in the river was high and it would be unsafe. When it’s time for riding the elephants, Yiu Yiu wanted to do so but we couldn’t since we didn’t have the coveted yellow tags. I spotted a young family with yellow tags, and they were not queueing up for the ride so I approached them and voila, they kindly gave us their yellow tags, so I got to ride with Yiu Yiu.

After the elephant sanctuary, we made a quick stop at the nearby Deer Land.

Feeding the deers in an enclosure

Some other animals in Deer Land

The five cousins

It started to rain just as we were leaving Deer Land, so we headed back to the apartment to shower, before going out for dinner at Bukit Tinggi Village.

Making funny faces while waiting for food to arrive

Yiu Yiu and Yihao chilling out in front of the TV at the apartment before bed

I didn’t manage to take much photos, since we have to take care of so many children, two of whom needed to be carried most times since we were in crowded places, so I don’t need a DVD-R to store those photos. Just as well, since I don’t have any CD DVD duplication equipment, even if I have some blank media to work on.