March 30, 2010
After more than 2 and a half years of being on Blogger. I have finally taken the big step of moving this blog into my own domain and to an external hosting service.
Thanks to friends, many friends in my blogosphere network for reading my blog and regularly dropping your caring comments. Not forgetting my most loyal reader, dh.
Here's to more wonderful years of blogging. See you on the other side; http://www.catch-fortywinks.com Kindly don't forget to add my new URL to your bookmarks!
March 25, 2010
Morning, afternoon, wee hours in the night
Keeping my eyes wide open is a tough fight
CSS, PHP. FTP.
Acronyms that I see everyday
No more greek to me now, I have to say
I am starting to see glimpses of the fruit of my labour
After days and nights of trial and error
It does seem like it still takes forever
With little time on my hands
I have decided that K starts school soon
Giving me more time in the afternoons will be a boon
I really shouldn't be whinging or complaining
Afterall, it is what I have chose
The only question I should pose
WHEN CAN STOP BEING SLEEP-DEPRIVED?
March 17, 2010
It feels like just yesterday
That you were just a little bundle
In my arms you quietly lay
At that moment, motherhood was still a muddle
One was the number
That you stood up and started walking
Still waking up many times in your slumber
And blubbering was all you were talking
Two was a picture of giggle and tears
Full of mischief, difficult to please
Temper tantrums, screams and lots of fears
Oh I was wondering when will it cease
Three has lots of sunshine
Lots of warmth and humor to light up our day
Endearing ways that suit us just fine
Just that little more difficult when you want your way
Filling our days with your endless chatter
Asking questions till our patience run thin
Somedays it gets a little bit better
When you flash us your cheeky look and gummy grin
We just want to thank God above
Thank Him for filling our years with laughter
Our lives with lots of love
And endless loving banter
Regardless of whether you are stubborn little thing
Well-behaved or a naughty boy
You will always be my little darling
And daddy’s biggest pride and joy
Happy 3rd Birthday Kyle!
After an extremely challenging morning with a misbehaving K, dh and I found the perfect excuse to leave the house legitimately (with K’s permission) to get his birthday cake. K was aware that his misbehaviour had consequences and was feeling quite miserable, but he knew that he had to stay at home with our helper.
We quietly put up the decorations in the hall when we got back, while K took his afternoon nap.
When K got up, he grinned from ear to ear to see the house decorated for his birthday party and could not wait to celebrate his birthday in the evening.
The highlight of the evening was the cake that we ‘pimped up’, Ben-10 style. I skipped the idea of getting a nicely decorated Ben-10 fondant cake and went with a strawberry shortcake from Canele instead. To make the cake look a little more authentic Ben-10 style, I relegated the strawberries and replaced them with green chocolate chips and Ben-10 figurines. It was a hit with the birthday boy, and the adults who attended his party sure were glad that they were not fed a heavy butter-cream cake enveloped with fancy fondant-covered decorations.
March 16, 2010
I have discovered that K is a very determined child. Once he has made up his mind that he wants to do something, he will be firmly resolved to his cause and no amount of persuasion, coaxing or even reprimanding can sway his decision.
Determination is a good thing I suppose. Especially when it comes to personal goals and meeting objectives. But when it comes down to something like; deciding not to use the toilet/potty when doing his big business and sticking to his diapers, I had to try to break his resolve.
For the past 5 days, I have tried to get him to pass motion in the ‘proper way’, but I failed miserably. He stood resolute against the ‘enemy’ (me) and refused to barge. He attempted to be cooperative and visit the toilet when told to on the 3rd day, he climbed onto the toilet bowl and potty for a total of 10 times in 2 hours and still nothing resulted from his attempt. One the 4th day, he sat on his potty for 1 and a half hours, coupled with big yawns, loud exclamations that he was very tired and that he was concentrating and the poop was on its way out, but still nothing.
On the 5th day, I was so worried about his constipation problems that I brought him to the doctor and got a suppository inserted. 10 minutes later when we got home, he had to clear his bowels but still refused to use the toilet/potty. By this time, he was sobbing loudly due to the pain and discomfort, but still refused to poop in the toilet.
After half an hour, I gave in. I could not take seeing him so tortured and decided that this was a battle I chose not to fight for now. I helped him into the diapers and immediately after, he pooped in it. The 2nd time, he could not hold it in and there was a small accident, so I had to help him onto the toilet. After his attempt sitting on the toilet, he cried and said it was smelly and wanted to be washed straightaway. I realised then, that my child has more than constipation issues, he could potentially have a fear of pooping in the toilet or even some form of Obsessive Complusive Disorder. However, I still cannot quite fathom why he is perfectly alright with peeing in the toilet thought.
I will have to let him continue using his diapers for now and revisit this problem down the road. Maybe by the time he turns 4 or 5, he will think that it is embarrassing to be in diapers and decide to do it the normal way like everyone else. I hope so, I do really hope so…
March 7, 2010
After 12 days of co-sleeping, breaking routines, skipping naps, K’s sleeping habits have regressed. For the past 3 days since we got back from our vacation, I have to re-train him all over again to sleep by himself.
Sleeping routines have got back to usual, more or less. Except that he is very bad tempered, stubborn, un-cooperative and has started screaming when he does not get his way. When I ask him what is wrong with him, he tells me, “Not enough sleep.” A lousy excuse when he gets up early, too early at 7.30 a.m. and then refuses to go back to sleep.
So I have resorted to using the threat of ‘the hanger’ a little too often these past couple of days. K is absolutely terrified of the sight of ‘the hanger’ and that is probably the only thing that can coerce good behaviour out of him for now. Besides ‘the hanger’, I have another trump card for now; his birthday cake and presents. His birthday is approaching in about a weeks’ time and I have told him that if continues to misbehave, there will be no cake, no presents, no celebration.
Sometimes, all it takes is that potential thought of a loss of privileges, that might get a tot to wise up a little.
March 4, 2010
12 days is just about the maximum number of days we can stay in Sydney (without getting sick of the place or getting broke first after eating out so much).
It’s a wonderful cosmopolitan place, with lots to see and do, even for kids. However, most things are just too expensive. Shopping is about 30-40% more costly than Singapore (unless you limit your shopping from only Target, K-mart or thrift shops) and eating out is pricey. Besides there is hardly any service to talk about. Shopping is only fun when it comes to fresh produce, like meat, seafood, fruit and vegetables, however try not to even consider imported produce. I still find it extremely ridiculous that ginger (obviously not grown in Australia) costs like AUD$50 per kg!
Apart from little peeves like the above, it is still a nice place to go for a family vacation. The region offers a vast variety of nature and wildlife attractions, extremely apt for children who love nature and animals.
For K, there is one memorable thing that he remembers fondly from our trip…
March 2, 2010
To the west of Sydney lies the World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains region. With its temperate climate, coupled with beautiful scenery, a trip to Sydney will not be complete without a visit to the Blue Mountains. The close proximity of the Blue Mountains to Sydney (about 1 hour plus drive away) makes it ideal for a day trip, however, due to the lack of time, we only managed to view 3 sites and would have probably need a few more days to experience the many scenic sites of the region.
We stopped by a town Leura in Blue Mountains for lunch. Instead of walking around town to look what slowly explore what other cafes had to offer, we were hungry and fully trusted the map (that we purchase from the Blue Mountains information stop) for its recommendation. We ended up having a simple sandwich lunch, french fries and nuggets (for K) for AUD$40, another one of many over-priced meals that we experienced during this trip.
We went on to visit the Three Sisters, a famous rock formation in Blue Mountains. A little less magnificent than I envisioned it to be, maybe the cliffs are slowly being slowly broken up by erosion and may one day be eroded away completely? Regardless, I still appreciate the wonders of nature with the view of the beautiful scenery.Our last stop in the Blue Mountains was taking rides on the scenic skyway, cable car, railway and a short nature trail on the broadwalks of a rainforest. We drove back to the city thereafter and met Uncle Nick for our dinner for our last night in Sydney. Was not feeling too adventurous after a couple of expensive and disappointing meals in Sydney. So we ended up having our dinner in the same Italian restaurant in Darling Harbour, that same one that we dined in the last 2 nights. The four of us shared 1kg of bbq ribs, steak, 2 pasta dishes and were fully satiated after the wonderful and reasonably-priced meal.
March 1, 2010
The weather turned a little chillier on our last few days in Sydney, as it started raining in the morning of Day 10. From the hot 28 – 30 degrees celsius that we experienced the last couple of days, the temperature went down to about a windy 20 degrees celsius.
Australian MuseumWe had to re-schedule our plans to visit Luna Park in the late morning and went instead to the Australian Museum. The wealth of exhibits encompassing natural history is really impressive, I like that there is an interactive area; Kids Space, specially for kids under 5s.
We headed over to Luna Park after lunch despite a drizzle, we figured that the rain might stop and there will still be a couple of rides in the amusement park that will be sheltered from the rain. When we got there, we realised that Luna Park was closing in about 45 minutes time at 4.00 p.m. We also could not plan to return the next day as its opening days were only on Friday – Monday. So we tried our best to fully maximise our visit to the amusement park.
I realised that there is a similar amusement park like this in Melbourne in St. Kilda’s, and we never really bothered to visit the place when we were there about 10 years back. Guess a lot of things change when you have an additional little person in your life. Park entry is free, but the cost of taking the rides were really pricey, about AUD$10 per ride if no special passes were purchased. But since being little has got its privileges, (K’s admission to many of our visits to the various places of interest has been FOC, since he is below 4 years old). we got a special pass for K that cost $20.00. We specifically chose rides that he could either take himself or were allowed an accompanying adult without an extra charge; i.e., the carousel.Coincidentally, the carousel is also K’s favorite ride at most amusement parks that we visit. Besides the rain got a little heavier, so dh and I made our money’s worth by taking turns to ride the carousel with K. The little boy was so thrilled that he got to sit the ride for at least 4 times over. As there was only 20 minutes left before closing time, we braved the drizzle and ventured further into the park to search for another ride that will be suitable for K. Overall, I think we really made our money’s worth with all the rides that K took, it only averaged about $2.00 per ride. Plus, it is really quite nice to be the few customers left in the park with hardly any other people around to vie for the rides.
February 28, 2010
Featherdale Wildlife Park
Featherdale is one of the best wildlife parks that we have visited thus far, and the experience here was much better than Sydney Wildlife Park in Darling Harbour. The park had a vast variety of Australian animals, the tamer ones like the wallaby and kangaroos roamed about freely in their areas and they are so docile that we could actually pat them! K was so keen in patting the animals that he asked me if he could also touch the ones in their enclosure. He was all excited and co-operative until we met the ‘witching hour’ of 3 p.m. (not a good time, especially when he did not get his afternoon nap for the day) and started fussing till we got him an ice-cream to end his visit on a good note.
He fell fast asleep once we got back to the car and did not get up till an hour and a half later when we got back to The Rocks, north of Sydney city. As it started raining when we reach our next destination, dh had to brave the rain, ran to the nearest touristy shop to get an china-made umbrella that cost AUD$17.00! After spending so much for a lousy umbrella, we really regretted that we forgot to bring our own umbrella and K’s raincoat for this trip.
While waiting for the rain to stop, we went into a French bakery shop for some tea and hot chocolate. This was first time that K got to have a cup of hot chocolate by himself. Once the rain ended, we did the quintessential touristy thing of posing for photos at The Rock’s harbour, complete with the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge in the background. As we were walking on the wharf on the way back to the car, K started fussing and dh told him that the wharf will open up and swallow him up if he continued to misbehave. K thought for a while and said, “No such thing.” Well, looks like tall tales such as this sort will not really work too well with him. Good attempt though, dh :)
The highlight of our trip to Sydney has to be the day that we visited a farm, wildlife park and The Rocks (again) all in a single day. Not that I was the cruel parent that wanted to maximise our vacation by cramming too many activities for a tot in one day. But rather, rest for K was much easier to be scheduled in, when we took long drives to visit attractions out of the city. Being that easy traveller, K often took his naps in the car during our long drives and was full of energy when we got to our destination.
Animal Farm Dural
The visit to the farm in Dural, that was about an hour drive outside the city, provided many firsts for Kyle. We have been reading so much about farms, but never really got to experience it first hand. I was really looking forward to visit Golden Ridge animal farm, as it was a first time at a farm for me as well.
Our visit to the farm was the first time that K…
From this visit to the farm, dh and I realised that K has no fear at all for many kinds of animals. Often, fear is a learnt response for a child, it does help that adults around him show no fear for the animals and the child will learn to embrace new experiences / interaction with new animals.