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Friday, June 30, 2006



Paper Plate Craft

Young kid's crafts are really very easy to do and the kids love them. With resourceful ideas easily available on the internet, it takes very little time to do some fun crafts with/for the kids to enjoy. All you need to do is stock some craft materials at home like coloured pens, glitter glue, coloured paper and the very versatile paper plate.

Here's a paper plate craft which we did recently. Its a smiling octupus. The craft idea was sourced from here. You can print out some templates for the eyes and ribbons. With no printer at home, I improvised by drawing in the eyes and mouth myself and using silver paper for the ribbons and tie from an old used party mask.

This blue one with the ribbon on top is for my girl (she insisted on blue since its her favourite colour and baby had pink instead so theres no gender stereotyping here. Hehe.)


This pink one (looks like red here) is for my boy. Its wearing a tie. "Like when daddy goes to work" says my girl.

Thursday, June 29, 2006



Teaching my child helps me to know her better

Lessons are progressing well with my girl. Yesterday she was learning to write the small letter "n".

MG: Can you make your "n" a bit fatter? Its a bit thin.

My Girl: This one looks like daddy. I think I'll write mummy "n" now.

After writing an "n" which didn't look too good....

My Girl: I think this one looks like baby, mummy. Its very thin.

After writing a nice looking "n"....

My Girl: This one is me, mummy.

And so she went on writing the alphabet in various shapes and sizes and naming them as she went along!

I find that the best way to understand your kids is to be close to them, doing things with them. For example, by teaching her myself at home, I have discovered that she has the following traits.

Impatience: Does not wait for me to finish instructions sometimes but eager to try out the activities. Does not listen well.

Carelessness: Does her work sloppily and carelessly without much care at times unless pushed

Lacking in Confidence: Sometimes she knows the answer but says it very softly or dare not say it unless I give confirmation that its the correct answer or unless I do the activity together with her.

At the moment, I'm still cracking my head on how to help her overcome those traits especially the low confidence one. I'm not too worried about the first and second trait as its probably characteristics of a young child. Afterall they have so much energy and they love to play. The fact that she can sit still for a whole hour doing her work is very good and she gets a kiss at the end of every lesson.

So far, we both have no complaints about her lessons. However, I do find that one hour is a lot of my time. Hehe. So sometimes while teaching her, I periodically jump onto my exercise bike to do some pedalling while she is doing her work. Afterall, mothers are very good at multitasking! I shall add "Doing exercises while giving my girl lessons" into my basket of multitasks.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006



Angry Baby

Baby loves to merajuk (sulk). Raise your voice at him a little and his lower lip comes out about half an inch. Raise your voice louder and he may do any of these things:
  • run away to the corner of the room/to another room
  • turn his face away from you
  • lower lips starts to quiver
  • lie down on the floor!
  • use his hands to beat the air/the person he is angry at and say "map" (I think it means "mad". He learned this from his sister. Sometimes when they are playing, I can hear them shouting angrily at each other "Map! Map")

Another thing that makes him sulk is his attire. He is picky about what he wears and often chooses only the nicest shoes for his feet (no slippers will do) and you can never make him wear things he wears at home for going out. He can differentiate his going out outfits from his home wear.

Actually, I just love to look at his face when he sulks (he has a very cute pout and oh boy can he pout!) but then I cannot allow him to get away with it. When he sulks usually Mr MG and I will secretly smile behind his back while we scold him for it outwardly.

Sometimes after he has finished merajuk (when his anger has subsided), he will then run to me, call "mummy" in the sweetest voice coated with sugar and honey, put his face right in front of mine and grin or smile broadly (till his eyes becomes small slits and I can see little wrinkles at the bridge of his nose) to try to coax me into smiling at him in return. He always does that when he knows that I am angry at him. Yup! Those kids are experts at emotional blackmail.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006



Barney

Barney finally made it to KL. And so we sacrificed one morning of grocery shopping to bring the kids to watch the free show (Barney's Beach Party) at 1 utama shopping centre specially brought here by Jaya Jusco Shopping Mall.

It was packed, as expected. They didn't allow any parent to accompany the little ones in the cordoned off area in front of the stage. So we took them upstairs and sat on the floor with them for a birds-eye view instead.

From the top, we could see the children singing and dancing along with Barney. It was obvious that most of them knew the moves and the words by heart. Barney is indeed very successful here. Our kids collection of the Barney vcds surpasses my own collection of music cds easily. I only have a miserable few compared to theirs. (Shows who their father dotes on more eh?) My girl was surprised and delighted to see Barney, BJ and Baby Bop come onto the stage as we didn't tell her beforehand.

For those parents here whose kids have yet to watch it, here are the remaining showtimes:

Tue 27 June - Fri 30 June (3pm, 5pm & 7pm)
Sat 1 July - Sun 2 July (1pm, 3pm & 5pm)

Friday, June 23, 2006



From Working Mum to Stay At Home Mum

I have evolved and transformed.........into a HOUSEWIFE!

On transportation....

I was an independant young lady, lucky enough to own my first car at an early age, with help from my sis who sold hers to me at market price but she allowed me to pay her at my own pace. I guess you could say my first two cars were hand-me-downs, although I paid for them fully, on my own. Later on, I was fortunate enough to have a company car.

I drove around everywhere on my own, to clubbing till wee hours of the morning, coming home only around 3am alone :P, to outstation for work related assignments or for company trips (owner of company car no choice but to double up as designated driver for such occassions). I'd drive to pick up my girlfriend from Klang, go all the way to KL for an outing then send her home to Klang before driving home to PJ.

But... I've since sold my car and now am solely dependant on hubby for transport! Very housewifey!

Before I lay me down to sleep....

Now, the last thing I think about each night before I sleep used to be...

"Shit! I hope I don't mess up the protocol at tomorrow's conference with the minister as guest of honour and the press attending."

"Good morning, ladies and gentlement. Welcome to........." (busy practising the next day's seminar opening speech to introduce the speaker/course leader).

"Shit! With this kind of news, tomorrow's market will open gap down. How on earth will I be able to sell the stock for my client."

etc etc etc.

Now the only thing that I think about before I go to sleep each night is usually...

what to cook the next day

or I'd be .......

blogging in my head. (hahaha)

How housewifey!

Oh I have lots more stories to tell about how housewifey I've become but I won't bore everyone to death. I'll leave that to another day and another post, when the fancy strikes me.

Thursday, June 22, 2006



Hongkong Star Eric Tsang's Restaurant in KL

Last week on my birthday, Mr MG said "Would you like me to drop you at the shopping complex for a few hours to shop on your own?" Hehe. That was music to my ears. And so I spend about 3-4 hours walking around leisurely on my own, stopping to enter whatever shop or stall that strikes my fancy. That felt absolutely great. 3-4 hours of me time! Woohoo! I wish I had more time though. I probably would have had a meal on my own and went to a movie on my own as well. Hahaha.

For Father's Day, we took dad to eat Tim Sum at the Chinese Restaurant opened by Hong Kong star Eric Tsang. I didn't have a camera with me and besides Mr MG would have thought I was quite mad if I took a camera out and started snapping photos of the place and food to put on my blog. So you can view some photos from this blog instead or read more about the restaurant from TheStar.com.

The food was not too bad and ambience quite nice. The restaurant was located at Hartamas Shopping Center. We took the kids to the Kidzsport there before lunch. This is our first time to Kidzsports. Since it was a Friday (we celebrated early), we had the place entirely to ourselves. Mr MG and I crawled around with the kids and they enjoyed themselves. Even kong kong (grandad) played with some of the balls that flew up in the air when you put it through the machine.

With the first half of the year over, so then is most of our birthday and other celebrations which fall on the first half of the year. Phew!



New Mother Needs Support And Encouragement

Dear Mothers in Blogosphere,

A new mother needs some of your support and encouragement. Please visit my other blog for the details and hope you will share your after birth coping strategies with her. Thank you all.

MG

Here is the link to the post: Post Partum Blues

Tuesday, June 20, 2006



Mothering Times

I've started a new blog to help me earn more pocket money. Aren't I such a money face? Hahaha! This blog is too rojak (mixed) with a potpourri of topics from things I observe around me, to my children's development, doing memes and talking about me. I wanted to have a more foccussed blog that looked more professional. But what on earth can I write about?

Finally I decided that my area of expertise is on being a mother and so Mothering Times was born to record my Mothering Moments. It will only focus on topics about being a mother. I hope all you other mothers out there will support me by linking to my new blog. Thank you. Terima Kasih! Hehe. That'll help boost up my page ranking so that I can get some search engine traffic. At the moment its nil :(

Building up a blog is hard work just like making babies. Thats what my first post there is all about. Getting Pregnant Is Hard Work. Will you come and visit me on my new blog and give your opinion about it? Any suggestions for improvement will be greatly welcomed. Thanks again.

Monday, June 19, 2006



Adsense

It makes sense to me to participate in the adsense program. Afterall, I'm a professional SAHM whose only source of income is her husbands wallet and so I've got to do what I've got to do..... to earn some extra pocket money! :)

You may notice by now that I've put up ads on my blog. Perhaps it may be an eyesore to regular readers of my blog as it does add clutter to the overall look. (Just pretend you don't see it). I don't know about other behaviours but for me personally, I do not click on ad links in blogs I visit. Why? Because when I go blog hopping, I don't have time to read other links. Theres too much to read and too little time.

However, if I were to surf the net for information, then I do click on ad links to lead me to the info that I want. The ads are meant for those who are searching for relevant info who just so happen to be passing by or who has been led here through search engines. I figured out that it is worthwhile to put up the ads on my potential money generating machine blog rather than to let it sit idly somewhere in cyberspace.

I'm glad I did it. Its fun. Its fun to learn new things and terminology. Its fun to tweak my template to see what style would generate more clicks. And of course its fun to watch my cash register go up! Hahaha. Another statistics to watch apart from my traffic and refferer list. Yup! Its definitely fun! Why don't you try it too?

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to check how much I earned today. Ciao!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006



Win A Book!

Have you any dreamed of becoming a book writer? I have! Thats why I have a blog.... to satisfy my craving to write. Hehe. If you're like me and have dreamed of becoming a writer, now's your chance to participate in the publishing of a book.... by coming up with the title!

Lydia Teh who wrote Life's Like That - Scenes from Malaysian Life requested that I redirect some of my rather humble (*blush blush*) small bunch of blog readers (thats you!) to her blog to suggest a title for her new book.

Since I will be busy and won't be blogging for the rest of the week I better do this very quickly as the dateline for submission is Monday 19 June, 2006. So what are you waiting for? Lets go there now to suggest a book title.



Leaf Art

As part of my girl's lessons, I have decided to make Friday "Arts and Crafts" day.

And so on Friday morning, we went for a "nature walk" to pick leaves of various sizes and textures. Then we came home, painted the leaves (vein side up), flipped them over and pressed the imprint onto white art paper and voila we have pretty colourful leaf art. Great fun!

When we grew tired of using watercolors, we put the white art paper on top of the leaves, used crayons to colour over them and like magic, the outline of the leaves appeared on our paper. We also did the crayon trick with coins. A very simple craft indeed with lovely results.

Leaf craft ideas sourced from here.

Here's our artwork for the day:


My Leaf Artwork


My Girl's Leaf Artwork

Tuesday, June 13, 2006



Blogicide

This post is for those considering or have thought about committing blogicide (close down blog). Hope you like the confucius sign I created for you and me from CustomSignGenerator.com :)




Here's the top 7 reasons why I cannot commit blogicide for the time being.
  1. This is my ranting place. When I feel lousy, I come here to vent and rant and I immediately feel better afterwards. Its an instant pick-me-up!
  2. This is my positive place. I come here to turn my negative thoughts and feelings into positive ones.
  3. This is my inspirational place. I come here to motivate and push myself to do things which I have been putting off. I come here to improve my self-discipline and willpower. I come here to remind myself to become a better person.
  4. This is my memory box. I come here to record the lovey dovey moments in my life which I want to remember for always so I can look back in fondness when I'm too old to remember.
  5. This is MY place. I come here to give myself a pat on the back!
  6. This is my source of information. I come here to catch up with the latest news, happenings, eateries, movies, recipes etc.
  7. This is my networking place. I come here to network with like minded individuals who provide me with the support and encouragement when I need it. Thank you all.

And the beauty of it is, I can do all these sitting on my chair in my room.

So... whats yours?

Monday, June 12, 2006



Finger Pointing

My two little ones seem to derive a certain satisfaction at seeing the other one being punished.

My girl is always telling me to "beat baby" because "baby naughty". My boy has caught on too. The other day he repeatedly said "Mummy sco" (scold), "Daddy sco" (scold) while pointing to his sister.

Recently Mr MG caught them doing something naughty (I don't remember what and I don't know who was the culprit.) When Mr MG asked baby "Did you do this?" he said "Cheh cheh" (sister). Mr MG then called my girl to the room and asked her the same question "Did you do this?" to which she replied "Baby" and they both pointed their fingers and one another! (*shakes head*)

Thats sibling rivalry for you.

Sometimes they are the best of friends though, chasing each other around the house, clowning around and screaming with laughter. When I hear their squeals of joyful laughter, I feel that only a sibling could give this kind of silly play that a parent can't quite match or at least I can't match that kind of play since I don't have that kind of energy they seem to have.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006



The Big Four Zero

I'm turning 40 next week! Someone called me freakin' old! Hahaha! But I don't feel old! Hardly! I'm always stuck somewhere in time in my 30s, my mind that is, not my body. Hehe.

So, how does it feel to be 40? Great! Simply Great! And they say women want to hide their age. Whatever for?

I feel great at 40, much better than 30s or 20s. (for me personally that is). In my 20s, I felt incredibly lonely. In my 30s, I was still struggling to find myself. And now approaching 40, I have discovered myself. My relationships are better. Even my relationship with Mr MG is more stable now. We used to fight a lot before we were married and fighting is no fun.

I feel more complete now, especially with my little ones. I feel and I think I look better too. Heck! I even feel sexier at 40 than when I was younger. Though I may not look it. Hahaha! Sexy is all in the mind folks, its all in the mind (although a good body helps too so never ever let yourself go)..... which reminds me that I must do my exercises more diligently. So I won't be posting for the rest of the week as I concentrate on teaching my girl and doing my keep fit and keep trim exercises. My self discipline to do my exercises has been waning after my weight dropped. Theres only that many hours in a day. So if I want to do all of those other things, I've got to blog less. Oops! I digressed. I'm very good at that. Very "cheong hei" (Long winded) I am.

Back to my topic on the big FOUR ZERO. I'm more confident and I'm more daring and less timid than when I was younger too. Yup! 40 is definitely a great number. No doubt about it. Happy Birthday to me! Where else accept on a blog am I crazy enough to wish myself a Happy Birthday.. and its not even my birthday yet! Lol!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006



Lesson Funnies

Yesterday's Lesson

Yesterday we learned the concept of "health".

There was a page in her activity book which showed healthy and unhealthy foods. I explained to her which types of foods were unhealthy ie snack foods and sweets which I told her would not make her grow but would spoil her teeth instead. I also told her that eating vegetables will help her to go to the toilet and she remembered that today (although I don't think it will make her eat her vegetables).

There was another page which showed pictures of healthy and unhealthy activities. Healthy activities included skipping, gymnastics and jogging. Unhealthy activites showed the picture of a child sitting at the computer playing pc games.

Later that day, when she found mummy in front of the pc.... "Mummy, you can't do that. Thats unhealthy!" (*MG slaps forehead*)

Today's Lesson

Today's lesson got interrupted halfway by smelley poo from baby! I left her to do some work but she finished it so quickly that halfway through cleaning baby I got interrupted by "Mummy, finish already!" Now didn't I say that I'm always being interrupted?

There was a page which required her to draw a star. I discovered that my girl has an impatient streak in her. She was having difficulty drawing a star and I was trying to teach her but she hardly looked, eager to try it out herself. Gosh! I didn't know it would be so difficult trying to teach someone to draw a star! A star is a lot harder to draw (for a child) than it looks. We tried several times unsuccessfully, so going to postpone the star drawing and work on other simpler drawings first.

She read well both yesterday and today.

I'm happy with the way lessons are progressing. Hopefully I can keep it up!

Monday, June 05, 2006



Teaching is hard!

Hubby commented that I need to teach my girl in a more structured manner. He suggested that I wake her up earlier to teach her for about 2 hours before baby wakes up! *Faints* He also mentioned that I haven't been reading to baby very much, at least not as much as I used to read to my girl at his age. Thats true. Poor baby. Hubby also said that I have time to read story books but not to baby! Ah! That man. Just because I'm not working, he usually feels that I'm not doing enough for the children when I do things for myself. Once he said to me "Why do you blog? It doesn't do anything for the family?" Aiyoh! I told him "I blog for me because it makes me happy." To me taking care of myself means I can take care of the family better.

Ok. So now he got me all hyped up about teaching my girl. The fact that I feel a little bit guilty for spending time on myself instead of the kids aside, I do feel excited about teaching her because she is at a ripe age for learning and very eager to learn. I am eager to teach her but I don't know where to start! Theres languages, math, science, social studies, arts, music. My goodness where to start?

I got excited reading about home schooling. I went to the bookshops to browse and was disappointed at the incomplete series of books available. I guess I need to do a little bit more research on this but for the time being we have started "lessons" at home. The "lesson" went well today. First we read a little bit (from the hand-me-down Peter and Jane Ladybird books), then we did some activities (a mixture of math and other things) followed by some writing practise. I wanted to start her off for just 15 minutes first since this is our first day but she seemed to enjoy it so we carried on for 45 minutes. Baby was very good too. He sat down at the table with us and watched us happily.

For now my objective is to get her into the habit of sitting at the same place everyday to "study" for a fixed period of time. I want to show her that learning is fun so she can experience the joy of reading her storybooks on her own. I want her to feel a sense of achievement as the words on her book begins to make sense to her. Hubby says he will leave it to me but I think he is of the opinion that I need to also show her that life is not all about play and sometimes we need to do things we don't like as well. I think I will leave that important lesson for a little later.

At the moment she can write her numbers as well as alphabets from A-Z both capitals and small letters. She can write her own name and some other simple words. So I'll just have to build on that. I'm very excited but at the moment the teaching task seem daunting. And I'm merely talking about teaching a pre-schooler! I need to give this more thought. Thats the benefit of staying home. My mind is not distracted by other things. And I hope to be able to establish a lifetime love for learning in her. I don't think its too early to start and I will try my best. I will try my best to show her that learning is not a chore but a joy.

But in order to do that, first, I must learn.....how to teach!

Friday, June 02, 2006



The Right Balance


The Right Balance
Author: mumsgather

Teaching children is a delicate thing
Of finding the perfect balance
To love and protect our offspring
Versus freedom and disciplining

I love my kids sometimes too much
But loving also means letting go
I have to release my clutch
So they may be independant and grow

My natural instinct is to protect
But sometimes I have to stand back
And let them fall so they learn to stand
Self assured without my helping hand

I have to teach them right and wrong
But my discipline cannot be too strong
Causing the children to rebel
When all I want is for them to excel

And so I give them the freedom
To learn to do things on their own
So they may have the self confidence
To solve their problems when they are grown

While I stand quietly in the background
Always making sure I am around
To love, nurture, support and guide
So they always have someone to confide


What inspired my poem today:

We are currently teaching my girl to eat on her own. And so I have to close my eyes and ignore all the mess and worry about her not getting enough food and harden my heart when we discipline her for playing with her food or refusing to eat. (Disciplining in this case means no dessert and no playing with a toy of her choice or not having mummy play with her after dinner while she whines and pleads endlessly for me to play with her and boy can she plead!).

It is so much easier to do things for the kids ie to feed them, pick up their toys for them, button their clothes and tie their shoelaces, pick them up to carry instead of letting them dawdle. So much easier and faster. But as a mum, my duty is to guide and teach the kids how to do things on their own. This means having the patience to stand in the sidelines and watch them struggle, mess up and play while they are at it, in other words to let them do it at their own pace.

Later on when they face problems at school with teachers and with peers, as a mum I need to teach my children how to solve their own problems and to provide them with the confidence and the ability to do it. As parents we cannot solve their problems for them and protect them forever no matter how much we want to.

This reminds me, at the playground, I often have to close my eyes and let my partner handle the kids as I tend to become overprotective. I'd have palpitations watching them play and have to struggle very hard not to rush to hold their hand. I think dads are much more relaxed and better at letting go then mums. Maybe I'm wrong about this?

I have seen a few parents who love their children too much with my own eyes. Someone I know was loved too much by his parents, so much so that they never allowed him to do anything on his own. Now they are gone and his sisters are still taking care of him and teaching him how to take care of his own ailing health. He never married and he got his first job as a petrol attendant only after his parents died.

Another person I know who is a few years younger than me and the youngest child was loved too much by his parents, they shrugged away and forgave his laziness and tardiness in school and as a result he did not do as well as his siblings at work. He married and continued to live with his parents and has now divorced because his wife could not get along with his mother.

Its a fine line, loving but not loving too much.

Thursday, June 01, 2006



For every action there is a reaction

In my previous post, I was talking about going beserk when my girl wets the bed at naptime. Now we usually wake up from nap about the time when hubby comes home from work. So occassionally the moment he walks in the house, he is greeted with the scene of a grumpy sleepy old lady carrying a pile of sheets, a wet crying girl and another crying baby who just woke up and is not happy about being ignored.

The other day when I wrote the post, hubby's action was like this. He came in, took off his tie, set his briefcase down, removed his shoes, washed his hands, then goes quietly to my girl to help her take off her wet clothes. Then he takes her to the shower to rinse the urine off her, takes a new set of clothes from the cupboard and helps her put it on while talking gently to her. "Its ok. Next time try to tell mummy you want to go to toilet to shh shh ok?" Whenever I happen to walk pass him, he gives my shoulders a gentle squeeze and say "Its ok. I know its hard." After that he picks crying baby up and says "Come to daddy!" He does all this despite having had a rough day at work. I know because he told me about his day afterwards. Whats my reaction to that action of his? Woohoo! He is the man! I love him to bits and pieces for being so wonderful. My frustration goes away (after a while). I pick baby up to hug and kiss (as baby was struggling to find mummy. Poor daddy!) Then I go and prepare dinner happily for everyone while feeling bad for my girl.

Sometimes however, I get this action from the hubby. He frowns. He tells me he has a bad day and thinks he can come back to some peace and quiet only to be greeted by more chaos with his wife shouting at his daughter and the house in disarray, sheets hanging over the furniture everywhere to dry. He tells me to have more patience with the girl, in front of the girl. When baby cries harder for me, he tells me that happens because I spoil them thats why. And what is my reaction to this action? Even if I may not say it aloud, I'm thinking "Yah, you try to do this and see whether you can remain patient. You think you're the only one who has had a hard day?" I could go on and on with the negative train of thoughts that goes through my head. I go and prepare dinner with a scowl on my face and during dinner when baby spits out his food and my girl plays with her food and get them all over herself, the table and the floor, I become even grumpier and so does he and we wear black faces whenever we pass by each other. And should he pass a remark about how the girl isn't feeding herself because I have not trained her well..... a words war will follow :P

Lol! This is a just example but it happens. The way we act towards another, be it our spouse, our co-workers, our friends, relatives and children really matters. You can influence how other people react to you simply by changing the way you act towards others. I was writing about my different reactions towards the way hubby acts towards me in a specific situation but this is actually a reminder to myself to act better towards those that matter to me because how I act will elicit different responses or reactions from them. So watch it MG. Watch how you behave all of the time as you can influence your surroundings and ultimately your own day and happiness simply by changing the way you act towards others!

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