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Friday, January 18, 2013

Year Of The Snake Coloring Pages

Chinese New Year is coming soon. This year, 2013 heralds the Year of The Snake in the Chinese Zodiac calendar. Though snake are often depicted as slippery, sneaky, slimy creatures in cartoons and such and little children may be afraid of them, now is the time to teach them a little about snakes in a fun way. Get them coloring in these cute Year of the Snake Coloring pages with snakes that are too cute to scare. Here are a few of my favorites.

Year Of The Snake Coloring PagesMy top favorite Year of the Snake coloring pages come from Childbook.com which has a whole page on Chinese New Year Coloring Pages And Graphics.

I love love love all the Chinese New Year coloring pages here. If your child loves coloring do check out this page for the lovely Chinese New Year coloring pages including the snake zodiac coloring page.

There are plenty of other Chinese New Year graphics to color here. Do check it out. It is really nice.

Year Of The Snake Coloring Pages
Next on my favorite list of Year of the Snake coloring pages is the Chinese Zodiac Coloring Page from OnColoring.com.

You can get your child to color his own zodiac animal sign plus the Year of the Snake page. This will be a fun activity for siblings to do.

Don't know what is your child's Chinese Zodiac sign? It's easy, you can check it out using this Chinese Astrology Animal Sign checker.

Year Of The Snake Coloring Pages
My third favorite Year of the Snake Coloring Page is from Activity Village.

What I like about the snake coloring page here is they actually have the words "Year of the Snake" on the coloring page itself. This makes it an excellent Chinese New Year coloring activity for a child.

Year Of The Snake Coloring Pages
Finally, I like this Snake Coloring Page from Coloring-Pictures.net.

There is only one snake to color on this page but I like the Snake's Chinese New Year Outfit.

Get your child to color the Snake's Chinese style clothing in bright red and gold and use it to decorate your home with this Chinese New Year.

Then it can serve a dual purpose. It is a craft or activity plus a Chinese New Year Decoration. Make several of these and paste them in the play room for a fun Year of the Snake decor.

There are plenty more Snake Coloring pages but I am only featuring these few because I like them the best. I think the snakes look adorable and they are suitable as a Chinese New Year activity compared to some of the other more scary or boring looking snakes for kids to color. These snakes are not scary. They're just cute and kids will enjoy coloring them.

Have fun and Happy Year Of The Snake 2013.

Blogger Blog Deleted By Blogger

This blog was deleted by Blogger in December 2012. There was no warning, nothing. One day, I opened up my dashboard and my blog was gone. That was it. I have 4 other blogs, they were all there but this one said "deleted". It had been caught by Blogger's auto spam bot which decided that the blog was spam. I also received this in my email.

Hello, Your blog at http://mumsgather.blogspot.com/ has been reviewed and confirmed as in violation of our Terms of Service for: SPAM. In accordance to these terms, we've removed the blog and the URL is no longer accessible. For more information, please review the following resources: Blogger Terms of Service: http://blogger.com/terms.gBlogger Content Policy: http://blogger.com/go/contentpolicy -The Blogger Team

All of my blog posts since 2004 was not only inaccessible to the readers, in addition I was locked out of my own blog. There was nothing there. I could not save my own posts into my own hard drive for example. Don't panic. Don't panic.

If your blog was deleted by Blogger, you will find a "restore" or "Request Unlock Review" button. The "restore" button does not restore your blog immediately. What it does is to send it in queue for a spam review by an actual person. It is stated that it will take 2-3 days. You will also see a message that says "If we do not hear from you within 20 days, your blog will be permanently deleted." So you had better hit that restore button quick and do check back to see that it is still under review. I found that mine disappeared after the first time I requested for an unlock review and I had that "your blog will be permanently deleted within 20 days message" back on. 

To speed up the manual review process, you can post on the Google Groups Forum. You can do this 24-48 hours after you have hit the "restore" button. You can check out my posting on the Google Groups Forum here.

Yes, that is right. I posted twice because after posting and going through the process of getting my blog restored, it was deleted again! I had to wait 3 weeks to get it restored the second time. Unfortunately for me, it was the year end holiday season so there was no one to manually review my blog for me. 

Tip: When posting in the Google Groups Forum, do start a new thread. DO NOT post on somebody else's thread or on an old thread. 

When stating your problem, remember to give the following information...
  1. Name of your blog
  2. Url of your blog
  3. Date you received the email about the deletion of your blog by Blogger
  4. Date you submitted the Request Unlock Review Form on your Dashboard
  5. The nature and background of your blog
This will make it easier for people to help you. You will be asked to read the guidelines and state that your blog is not spam before it is directed to Blogger for an appeal. Read the two links I provided above. They will give you a much better idea of the process. Read any links within those posts as well. They are all very helpful and will give you a general idea of the entire process. Good luck.

Next: How to back up your Blogger blog quickly and easily.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Household Duties For The Kids

Now that the kids are older and the maid has left, we have started to give the kids more responsibilities in the form of household duties.

The boy is Communications Manager or WIFI Officer and that means his job is to switch the WIFI on or off whenever we are leaving the house or just stepping in. He is also the Assistant Security Officer and his job is to turn the alarm on or off when dad is not around to do it. He is also to wipe the piano whenever he sees dust on the cover. He is also the Ribena maker and his job is to make Ribena for everyone during mealtimes. He embraces this duty, naturally.

The girl is Cleanliness Officer. Her job is to put all the rubbish into one bag and bring it downstairs for mum to throw out. She also sweeps the porch with the help of her brother during weekends.

Mum is Pest Control Officer. She takes care of the lizards, cockroaches, termites and other pests in the house.

What about dad? He is simply THE BOSS who tells everyone what to do. That's what mum and the Communications Manager says. Ok, to be fair, he is also the Security Chief in the house and takes care of the alarm system and all that.

The kids love this. They love the important titles and job that comes with it and takes their job quite seriously.

My take is... better take advantage of this small window of opportunity when the kids still love to help and do the housework and teach them to do so before it is too late. At the moment they think housework is fun and they love to help. That is the time to teach the kids to do household duties from young and not later when we have to nag them to do it.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Secondary School Choices Malaysia Kuala Lumpur

My girl is studying in a Chinese Primary School or Sekolah Rendah Jenis Kebangsaan Cina (SRJKC) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She is now in Std 5 in the school. In two years time we are faced with the decision on which school to send her for her secondary education. Well, at least that was what we thought but it would seem that many parents have made up their minds on that way before that.

Many of my girl's classmates know by now which school they will be going to in Secondary school. They are surprised that she still doesn't. A number of them will be continuing their Chinese School education in Secondary school. That option is not for us. Six years is enough, I think. Some have planned to go to the numerous private schools in Kuala Lumpur or the Klang Valley. Some have left to join the private schools in mid primary. They couldn't stand the homework and the environment in the Chinese school.

So what do we do now? We are left with the following secondary choices in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

  1. Chinese Independant School 
  2. Public Secondary School or Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan
  3. Private Secondary School
  4. International School
  5. Homeschooling
Let's see. We will make the decision by omission. Chinese School is out because its too tough. International School is out because it is too expensive. Private School is also out because it costs a lot of money. We have to save for further education. That leaves Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan. Hmm..... So the question now is which Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan. There are plenty of Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan around. Unfortunately there aren't that many good quality Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan available.

As a result, the better schools are very hard to get into. You need very good results and connections. Sigh. So how? You tell me.

Read my thoughts on Public Schools Vs Private Schools In Malaysia.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Doing Kids Homework For Them

I know some parents who do their kids homework for them. Why? Most parents would not do this. Why should they? However, when the child comes home with 7-8 workbooks with 2-3 pages or more or homework in each of them and bedtime is looming, what do you do? Sometimes, you inadvertently, against your better judgement, more than help your child with their homework. You end up supplying them with the answers or doing it for them.

It's only the 2nd week of school and the homework scene has started. My girl is in Std 5 this year and the teacher reminded them that she is now preparing them for UPSR next year. Each day my girl comes home with the said 7-8 workbooks of homework. Each day, we rush her to go to bed, just like last year.

"Come on, hurry up. Put your books away. It's time to go to sleep. Stop your work now." Usually kids have to be told to do work. We tell ours to stop work! It's a crazy situation.

I admit, in the last year, I have done more than help with homework before especially when it comes to things like cutting and pasting. Sometimes the kids are given photostatted work to be cut and paste into their exercise books for doing at a later time. I have cut and pasted the worksheets for my girl so she would have more time to complete her other work especially when she is very rushed.

Knowing this, recently when the English teacher gave the children worksheets to be cut and pasted into their books, she reminded them that they should do it themselves. "Do not let your dad or mum or maid cut and paste it for you. You are to do it yourself." while one boy said "I'll get my father's worker to do it." Are these spoilt kids or overworked kids? Go figure.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

First Day Back To School Rush

The kids went back to school yesterday and its back to business as usual. There is no slowly easing into school. Its like climbing up a steep rock wall. One moment, you are relaxing and having a holiday and the next, you climb over this steep rock wall and you are back to business as usual.

When the kids return from school they bombarded me with stories.

"Mom, I'm sitting with so and so again this year, mom I don't want! At first no one would sit with me but then later teacher changed our places and I have to sit with him again! Yah, mom I have to sit with her again too, mom. Mom, we have replacement classes on this and this day and this and that day will be off for Chinese New Year, mom we started with homework today and teacher said she will be teaching us with great speed and teacher said why didn't you bring your exercise book, you kids think today no school? and mom shall we buy the insurance and we need to pay the fees tomorrow and here are my new books to be wrapped by Monday the latest and you have to fill up the form in this booklet on your pledge on how many hours a day you will sit and study with me and you have to sign here to decide whether what you want the school to do in case something happens to me and can we do our timetable on the computer and print it out and please we must photostat the answers from this workbook for reference because teacher will collect it soon, mom, my BM teacher is so and so, I can't remember his name but he says he is a good teacher and he is the dunno what 3rd place in all the schools and my class teacher asked us to fill up something in my communication book but I forgot to bring it so I wrote it here instead and can you sign here please, and you have to decide what periodicals we want and we need to ask dad for the money today and mom can you help me with my homework, I don't understand this and mom can you help me paste this on my book and..... " Finally mom said  YOU ARE ASKING ME TO PASTE THIS! YOU ARE ASKING ME TO PASTE THIS! GO AND PASTE IT YOURSELF! (Yup bad mommy blew her top)

Then one was sent to do her homework and the other was sent to create his own timetable on the computer for printing out while mom checked the books, filled up forms, signed forms, counted money for fees, washed the school uniforms, prepared meals, marked the calendar for school holidays and school replacement days etc so she won't forget etc etc etc.

Yup! I've landed on the other side of the wall with a big bump! Time to wake up from the holiday. It is officially over. Then there is the daily washing of the school uniforms and ironing but I'm not washing shoes oh nosiree. I told the kids to wear the same shoes for the rest of the week. Smart moms have to learn how to cut corners and close one eye to 4 black shoes, yesiree.


This blog has been playing hide and seek recently. It went MIA last month, then reappeared and 6 days later it went into hiding again for 21 days this time. Yesterday it made a reappearance. I hope it won't go MIA again anytime soon! I want to make backups this time, while I can access it but I'm too busy!

For those readers who do not know, well, this blog was caught by Blogger's Auto spam bot last month. They thought it was spam. After a request for restoration, it was restored, it happened again 6 days after restoration. I had to make a second request but with the holiday season, well it took 3 weeks to get it restored.

There was even a message which read "If we do not hear from you in 20 days, your blog will be permanently deleted! Oh no! Scary. All my thoughts and diary deleted in one swipe! That's the digital we live in today. Impermanent. In the cyber world, people can appear and reappear Poof! just like magic.

I'll share the process of how to get your blog restored if it was deleted later on. For now, I'm just glad that it is back. So, Peek-A-Boo and a very Happy New Year 2013 to you.

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