Showing posts from 2016

Rough day at home

Last night, he ran a high fever of 39+ degree so today he was home all day. Day started well as he was doing painting and other games but evening was a disaster.

When I asked him to wash his hands, he filled up this container and put soap in instead of just doing a quick wash. As I was asking him to wash up and not to waste water, he purposely splashed the water every where. I forcefully turned off the tap and tried to carry him away but he got really upset. 

I guess he had no appetite as he want feeling well or perhaps as he had some tea time snacks or both. He wasn't in a mood to eat. He took a few mouthfuls and when he saw me drinking a  packet of green tea, he tried to drink but there wasn't any left I told him. He didn't believe, so he jumped up, took a chair , climbed up to try to reach for scissors on the table top. He told me he wanted to cut the packet to see if indeed there was anything left. 
Instead of snatching the scissors from him, I told him that he can ma…

Recent funny statements by Cayen

(At the restaurant) 四个大人,我不用 baby chair  ------------
Since Cayson was down with HFMD, we decided to stay home. Since life threw us lemons, we decided to make lemonade by singing some karaoke at home. 
Me: keep bleeding , keep keep bleeding love ... keep bleeding , keep keep bleeding love ...  C: what is bleeding ? Me: when you get cut, you bleed. Like if a knife or scissors cut you, blood comes out.. (Resumes singing) Me: keep bleeding , keep keep bleeding love ...  C: why is she bleeding? Me: someone cut her  (Returns to song) Me: keep bleeding , keep keep bleeding love ...  C: who cut her?? Me: erm .. Someone . I don't know.  (I figure he's too young to start learning  that love can hurt!) -------
He caught a cough after the holiday. It's a pity as I've managed to keep him cough free for three months with cordyceps supplements. Anyway, this time, I think his nightly suppers of biscuits , cheese or milk was causing his phelgm to continue so we tried to change his routine last night. 

Prelude to Legoland

For a lazy Sunday morning, I decided to let Cayen take the lead in packing for his short trip.

Me: how much clothes we should pack.  C: (Without hesitation) :4! Because we are going for 4 days. 4 shirts, 4 shorts and 4 underwear.  (Pause) And oh, 1 set of pyjamas too! 
Whoa, I don't even recall when I said we are going for four days. Anyway, he proceeded to pack clothes and pyjamas. He pretty much got the count right , he only forgot about the swimwear. And I reminded him to pack some extra change of clothes and pyjamas in case he dirties them. 
Next, I asked him to help me fold the clothes before packing and he obliged so readily. He was very methodical in his approach. So I can't help but ask. 
Me: whoa, you fold so well. Who taught you ? Teachers in school? C: No, YouTube. I watch on YouTube , they teach us folding. So don't need to go to school , just watch YouTube can already. 
He said it so matter of factly. Can't help be amused by how he thinks YouTube teaches more thi…

Reading surprises

Recent reading incidents that surprised us in Dec 16 : 
1. He read out the options on the menu:  Soup, spicy, dry  Fish soup  Water 
2. In the cab: Don't leave your iPhone and wallet behind (I suspect he memorised it Cox it's Handphone, not iPhone) 
Ride - Tap - Earn (after I told him months back) 
3. Along the highway on CTE  C: are we going to Changi Airport ? Me: how do you know? C: it's there (points to the signboard) 
4. Me: It's around 500+ C: oh, that's near 600.  (Didn't see that coming)
Anyway, tips to encourage kids to read without flash cards.  - teach them signs and decals you can find in the taxi / car or road signs (you can keep them still too) - when waiting for meals, read menus. Find games to play like counting the number of symbols etc ("not available", chicken, vegetables, etc) - when doing night time reading, point to the words as you read , and invite them to join in the reading (I.e. read the bigger words or words in bold) 

MMWH - Grab deals

Since the advent of Grab and Uber, i didn't have to complain anymore about the appalling services of taxis where they will pick and choose passengers during peak hours. In fact, apart from having a good supply of cars and convenience of booking from an app, cost has been lowered since Grabcars costs about 10-30% less than taxis, depending on distance, since they don't have all kinds of surcharges (peak hour, CBD etc). Furthermore, fare is predefined and fixed upfront so you need not fear cost escalations due to traffic jams. Lastly, all these fares you charge to credit card means no more digging for change and accumulating a lot more card reward points or rebates.

Yesterday, I tried my first ever Grabshare, which I highly recommend as fare has gone down further! A ride that would have cost $15 is now $10.50 during peak hours if I'm prepared to share with another passenger. And good thing is that if there's no one going my way, the driver who accepted the job will just…

Top of his boring list

I went through an exercise with Cayen when I asked him to list down what activities he finds boring and interesting. Idea of the activity is to identify those items and discuss how we can make those activities more interesting so they can focus longer.
First thing on his boring list is "Sleeping" , and naturally his suggestion to deal with it is to "wake up". * Gasps* 
While I already guessed that this item will come up on his list, since he will tell us every other night that he "can't sleep" and it's boring, it still amazes me that he feels so strongly about it. Nonetheless, I think I can't blame him, because I recall that as a kid, I hate afternoon naps too as I think it's a waste of time. Power of genes. 
Anyway, because it takes so much book reading to get him to sleep, I usually try to skive by telling him my own made up stories instead, using random themes. 
So yesterday I decided to tell him story of Rupert the cockroach getting introd…

Meet the parents session 2016

2-3 weeks ago, we went for our second meet-the-teacher session of the year. I was a bit nervous as he recently had a few brushes with a classmate and even threw her shoe over the fence and her clothes into the toilet. Not sure what went into him as they usually play together very well. 

However, unlike the last mid year review where he still had some issues settling in and sharing , this one went quite well relatively. Teacher said that he's able to play well with his classmates, and he likes to role play and be the teacher and teach the other kids how to read (and teachers were surprised he actually was reading correctly) . 

They asked if we sent him to any reading enrichment classes but we didn't. We only had nightly prolonged bedtime reading. (recap: he doesn't like to sleep). 
The only exception is with this particular classmate that is very similar to him, who will not give way to him or follow his instructions. So while they will seek each other out to play, they will …

Things he say

Ah Pa and Cayen were in a crowded lift. As usual, everyone was looking at their phones or looking rather bored or aloof. As Cayen took his exit from the lift, he grandly waved and exclaimed, " Good Day everyone ". Everyone was taken aback. They quickly regained composure and all became friendly and quickly tried to reciprocate his greetings. 
I never thought I would see this day. Haha. 
There was a long phase where Cayen wasn't so friendly to strangers, particularly in crowded lifts. Somehow I think that phase might just be officially over. ---------------
Today we went for a party . When Ah Pa brought him to say Hi to his friends, he obliged and say Hi to everyone . Then he said , "ok, job done!" And he made himself at home and sank into this corner chair to watch the Nic junior cartoon that was playing on TV. 
As we're doing bedtime reading today, he suddenly said, " Bobo bear , Bobo bear, what do you see? I see an Ah Ma looking at me. H…

Enrichment lessons

Since young, we have not really signed him up for much classes save for two terms of music lessons. We usually spend weekends just exploring new places, playgrounds, museums etc. However, since he just turned 4, we figure it's time to expose him to more structured learning to hone his skills and more importantly character. 

Earlier, I spoke on enrolling for Little Executive lessons. For November, we enrolled him in the Little Shaws holiday camp to let him do a bit of sports and taking a trial class at Yamaha. For the Shaws camp, it was interesting that kids got to not just try new sports, but also do a bit of painting and baking. 
As he arrived earlier, after kicking and running for 5-10minutes non stop, he was already tired and wanted to go home, but eventually he was coaxed to continue and they did have breaks with non sports activities in between the 3 hour program. 
While he couldn't quite blend in the first day because the other kids all seemed to already know each other, he…

Lessons and parties

Recently , we have signed him up for his first enrichment lesson at Little Executive, a fun way to build up his executive processing skills. We have been to four lessons so far. Up till the second session , he was a little shy to join. But by the third session, he was up and ready to go though feedback thus far is that while he was engaged in the first one hour , he couldn't quite concentrate thereafter even with movement breaks.  What I like about the lessons so far is that they teach concepts like goal setting to the kids. So for Cayen, his first goal was to "stop running out" of the class and he remembered it. So in the following session, he didn't run out of the  class at all. However, in week 2, he had to set new goals to stop drawing on the table and to stop climbing on the tables after he is done with his assignment. Let's hope we can increase his stamina over time. 
On one of these Saturdays, Godma brought him to a party which he enjoyed thoroughly due to…

Book review - making friends is an art

Why I like to use storybooks as a tool to promote good behaviour because they work far better than nagging when it comes to pointing the point across. Also, kids tend to be more receptive to listening to stories as opposed to being told what to do. They also understand it more when examples are given in the story. As such , apart from reading parenting books, I have also bought and read a lot of children books that impact certain skills - both English and Chinese. And I will try reviewing and sharing them here in this blog. 
It's an interesting book with colour pencils as characters where each colour has a certain trait / personality and Brown was initially disliked. The story went on where he uncovered why people didn't like him and how he changed and how he made friends eventually. 
I like the simple but interesting story and so did Cayen. 
By the way, I tried to make the book more interesting by asking him to relate which of his classmate relates to each of the colour penci…

Pokemon Exhibition at SEA museum

Given Cayen and his Ah Pa's obsession with Pokemon, naturally we had to be the first to visit the Pokemon exhibition inside the SEA aquarium when it opened two weeks ago. While it was interesting to see the various interactive exhibits , I was quite surprised the area was rather small. There's 8 stations in total plus a pokedex showing all the different Pokemons. And each person can only have a Pokeball (there's 3 different categories that one can choose from based on difficulty level). 
Using that one Pokeball, you will choose 4 out of the 8 stations to place the Pokemon and see the clues they give. End goal is to guess the Pokemon that resides within the ball. At the end of day, there's literally no prizes for guessing correct, just some satisfaction. 
I was glad that the game didn't involve any Pokemon gaming on the phone and involved mainly the booth interaction. Honestly I think it wasn't that exciting but since Cayen liked it, it was good enough for me. 

Sleep routines

His sleep routines used to 1-1.5 hours long. He would have his supper and come in 9pm. We would try to have him sleep by 10pm but sometimes it would drag to 10.30pm. 
Recently in the last 2 weeks, the routine changed a little. I allowed him to come sleep on my bed as I was wondering if his constant coughing/phlegm was due to him sleeping on the mattress on the floor near the clothes. 
Then, I tried to bring him down to the pool to swim, cycle or play after school for another 30-45minutes to further burn his energy. 
Also, we would start his routine at 8-8.30pm before his supper. He would come out at 9-9.30pm in between but that's still fine. 
Then, I let him help me turn on the humidifier / night light. And I turned off the other usual bedside light and made the room a lot darker.
Lastly, I would ask him to go sleep after 3 books after his supper. Even though I could see that he couldn't really get to sleep, as he was changing positions every 30 seconds, I closed my eyes and preten…

A sweet ordinary day

As I'm going back to work soon, I decided to accelerate my room spring cleaning process over the last few days. Today, I put on some finishing touches by hanging some photoes using some pretty paper frames and clips.

Then, I went to pick Cayen up as usual. Brought him downstairs to ride his bicycle as we were early today. I tried to teach him to use momentum to go up a slope and how to use the brakes while coming down. After we stopped playing for a while, he suddenly told me that he had meetings with Janelle,Alix and some other girls in school. I was quite amused. I decided this was a teaching moment and decided to teach him on how to conduct a meeting. Here's a summary: - we need a chairperson and attendees.  - people who arrive late lose their voting rights  - we need to have an agenda and stick to the timing else people will get bored - we need to minute down stuff in case we forget  - if we are unclear of what we heard, we need to clarify 
With this, we proceeded to have…

Artsy weekend

We had a basketballer mummy gathering at Art Museum last Sat. The kids were given instructions to create an artwork of their family with parental guidance. However, Cayen as usual didn't want my help , he wanted to do it his way. Hence, his piece was quite different. 
Thereafter, we had lunch at Dome before some of us proceeded to the National Museum for the indoor playground. However, as luck would have it, it was closed for renovation ! We have been so many times but they had to be close when I was trying to show Don Don. Anyway, we chanced upon another exhibition which had a room full of big balloons! The kids were so excited and played in there for so long - they didn't want to leave.
Then, we came across another exhibit where one could bring a piece home as well.. And so we did. The pictures were so cute ! All art should be so fun! And boy did we have a good time colouring it at home too.
Next day was another good day as we went to Huber's for breakfast as suggested by G…

facial recognition

When Ah Zang Alan stuck out his tongue and made a face, Cayson cried. When he shook his face another time , Cayson cried again. He hadn't seen Ah Zang for a few weeks and we suspect he's having stranger anxiety. 
Ah Gong was down with flu the last two days so he hadn't been carrying Cayson. When he said hello from afar earlier, Cayson pouted his lips and gave a very helpless and upset cry (很委屈!) Ah Gong was wondering why Cayson didn't react to his hellos - he used to laugh every morning when Ah Gong waved his very big hello. Then Ah Pa tried a few more times and Cayson  repeated his pout and cries .. And then we realised the root cause - he's very upset that Ah Gong hadn't been carrying him and didn't want to carry him! 
Whoa, we were all quite surprised by how early he is able to recognise familiar faces and form preferences ! Cayen was quite open to all people until one year old. 

Sleeping princes

For the entire third month, Cayson could only take short naps during the day time , only 10-15 minutes each time and only a few times a day. It didn't help that the occasional times he slept was always interrupted by the renovation right above us. 
Then, on Cayen's birthday on the 9th , as he was doing tummy time on the sofa, I gave him a hand when I saw him trying to rollover. I didn't realise that innocent flip was the start of a whole new era. 
Since that night, he had been rolling over to sleep on his tummy. For the first two to three days, he was waking up every 15-30 minutes throughout the night. Then suddenly, for the next few days, his sleeping time suddenly increased in the day and at night while he slept on his tummy. Then, for the last few nights, he had been sleeping from 8pm to 3am and drifting back to sleep easily from 3am to 7am+. And he could take 1-4 hour daytime naps too. 
So my light sleeper wasn't so light a sleeper after all - he just hasn't found…