Sunday, May 31, 2009

Daycare Anxiety Ain't No More

Samuel has been wearing his everyday clothes to his kindy since…. forever. He rejected his kindy uniform right about the time when he realized that when he wears it, he will have to go to school.

We did not insist on putting his uniform on him since it would add on to his anxiety. By and by, we actually forgot about the whole uniform thing until last week when it was brought up during our breakfast routine at the cafe downstairs.
Samuel is quite close to the cafe’s bosses and calls them Jie Jie-s and Aunty respectively. When one of the Jie Jie casually told him that he would looks good in his uniform and that uniform was meant for his school, Samuel remembered and asked for it the next day.
He happily paraded his uniform around and happily put on his kindy sport wear the day after.
And oh ya, there’s no more "no school" chanting for the past days already too : )

So, we guess, that’s a wrap on his daycare anxiety : )

Another chapter that is closed is the feeding time worries. We were under the impression that the teachers will feed Samuel his porridge during meal time since that’s the case here at home during lunch and dinner time.
But we gathered from his teacher during last Parents-Teachers Dialogue that Samuel eats by himself at school; one full bowl of porridge. He will tell his teacher that he does not want potatoes or sort but will eat by himself nonetheless.

How come at home still wants us to feed him his rice?

Manja time perhaps?

Friday, May 29, 2009

Oh, I See

Samuel’s observation skill never fails to amaze us.

He could point out to a camouflaged lizard that was resting across the stream,

he can spot aeroplanes in the sky and differentiate them from the stars in the middle of a dark night just by the lights that are moving up in the air,

he can correctly tells us that it is the crescent moon that’s hiding behind the cloud when he sees some dime light up in the sky

and so forth…

That being said, he is not so much into seeing where he is going when he walks though. He needs constant reminder from us to watch out for the road.
But he is indeed very sharp on things that he is interested in or when he sees an anomaly.

This morning, Mommy was clumsy as usual when we were preparing to head out of the house. Samuel wore his own shoes while waiting for Mommy to open and close all the doors.
And in midst of Mommy’s fuss, Samuel asked, “What’s that?” several times.
Mommy did not see anything and was about to dismiss Samuel’s query as another faux of his when Mommy saw this on the foyer floor.

On closer inspection, it was Mommy’s driving license.
Oops, must have slipped out from Mommy’s wallet when Mommy was fussing just now.


So ‘ya see Mommy. Sometimes ‘ya just have to listen to a Baby : )

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Parents and Teachers Dialogue

The Daycare that Samuel is attending organized a Parents-Teachers Dialogue last weekend.
We are not sure how frequent are they having this but it was our first time attending it. We only sent Samuel to this daycare at the end of their first semester this year.

This clumsy Mommy forgot to ask if the event was going to be a full 2 hours event or we could drop by anytime between the 2 hours time stipulated in the note Mommy received earlier.
But we figured that it should be ok to go later and not the first thing in the morning.
So off we went to the daycare last Saturday after our breakfast routine into a big crowd of parents.

The event was well organized:
  • There were some art works displayed at the foyer of the daycare

The dots are the children’s finger prints.
The teacher stated down each of children’s name next to their prints.

  • A picture slides show presented at the main area but we did not sit in
  • And a few sections allocated for the parents and teachers one-to-one dialogue.

We were surrounded by all smiling and cheery teachers that day. All of them took the trouble greet us. The principal even thanked us for the small treat we prepared the day earlier; echoed her teachers on how *marvelous the salad was and commented on Samuel’s picks artwork : )

Our dialogue went very well. We asked some small questions and the teachers did most of the talking reporting to us on Samuel’s progress; they have prepared somesort of report card to chart Samuel’s progress.
Being a novice on this and also because we are not too much of a fussy parent, we realized later that we forgot to ask some crucial questions:

  • Is there any punishment imposed to the children and what is the punishment method?
  • Is the child’s score gauged among his peers or just within himself?
    We prefer the scores not to be compared among the children as we know that every child progresses differently. As long as the child is showing improvement, no alarm button needs pushing nor no big praises need singing.

We are not sure if his report card is meant to be brought back but we did not ask. We were happy with what was charted. There were lots of As and some Bs in the chart with a big improvement on Social Development. Samuel cried for a good few weeks when we first sent him there, now he absolutely adores everyone.
A few areas that need improvement are:

  • Tracing.
    We notice that his pencil gripping technique is all wrong. We are trying to correct him now

  • Bathing time.
    He has no problem with bathing at the daycare but has a thing about wet hair and wet face. The teachers commented that Samuel will always tell the teachers complete with hand actions;
    “Don’t wash hair, don’t wash face. Wash body only”
    before his bath and will wail if the teachers attempt to wash his hair :O

Oh ya, we noticed that the scores for the second semester are always better than the first. We are almost certain that by the end of their year term, all the children will score A for everything : )

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Soup that Started it All

Until recently, Samuel only takes clear soup and not the creamy type.
But this has since changed when Samuel tried his first mouthful of Mommy’s homecooked (ahem!) yummy Creamy Mushroom Soup.

We have tried to talk Samuel into trying creamy soup before but he never budged. Our Boy is a bit skeptical on trying new food.

Last week, Mommy decided to wipe out her (ahem! again) famous pastas and mushroom soup when we were having Po Po, Yee Yee and Jie Jie over for dinner.
Perhaps it’s the big crowd that thrilled Samuel, he willingly tried the creamy soup with no cajoling.
And he asked for a few more refills after that.

: ) Mommy was one happy chef that night.

Samuel is now a fan of creamy soup. He had seafood chowder again yesterday at the Friday’s.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Speaks My Language

Perhaps Samuel thought that if he asks nicely or *demands sternly, things would go his way.

Whenever he asks something from us but failed on his first try, he will add in the magic word “please” coupled with his manja look.
This normally works wonder for him.

When he plays with his animal toys, he will do the same as though his toys could understand him :O
He will go:

  • Dinosaurs don’t fall
  • T-Rex sit there!
And so forth.
He even told off the mosquitoes that were buzzing around him, “Mosquito, Go way!”
:O :O

Suffice it to say, none of his animals, or the mosquitoes, or the ants listen to him :p

Friday, May 22, 2009

Teacher’s Appreciation Day

We received a note from Samuel’s daycare that they would be running a Teacher’s Appreciation Day event today.

They have a theme; An Apple A Day (couldn’t remember the exact wordings but close) and all the students were encouraged to bring an apple product for their teachers to show their appreciations.

We wanted Samuel to be involved in preparing his gift, so we did a little bit of thinking and came out with this:

Samuel colored the printed apples all by himself.

Cutting was done by Big Yee Yee

Samuel did the gluing with some help from Mommy

Samuel carefully put a pick in-between
and folded the cut colored apple with some help from Mommy

Some paper cut,
some glue
some picks....

There, cute little apple picks.

And what these picks are made for?

(Drumroll please ...... )
Absolutely pretty on the apple salad mix.

The salad was made fresh in the morning;
cut green apples, red apples, pear, Japanese cucumber, carrot and raisins. And not forgetting the fruit salad dressing.

Samuel personally carried it to his daycare this morning complete with a “Happy Teachers Day” wish that he has been practicing just a few minutes earlier : )
We reached slightly before their morning tea time and guess what we saw then?

The teachers were having an Apple Theme Morning Tea Party with all the children.

Sweet : )

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Making a Mountain Out of a Molehill

Sometimes Mommy feels that Samuel is teasing and making fun of Mommy’s exaggeration.

‘Ya see, Mommy often squeaks and shrills when hit with unexpected small haps, for instance when there’s a sudden splash of water comes out of nowhere or when Samuel drops all his cornflakes onto the floor. The shrills are sometimes an act of surprise and sometimes are meant to pull Samuel’s leg.

Samuel must have found these amusing. Nowadays he likes to exaggerate too. When he sees a cockroach crawling on the lobby, he would run back and forth endlessly while squealing on top of his lung to indicate his errr…. probably muse.

When he is watching a cartoon and come across a scene that he is scared of, he will run all over the house to everyone to seek comfort and asked to be rescued.
The thing is, the scene that he is scared of is really only a fox running in the forest : O. No biggie.

Same goes if he makes a big discovery (big as in baby big la). He will tell everyone of his discovery and will ensure that they acknowledge him before moving to another. As though it is something really big :p

And we, of course are ever ready to accommodate this Darling!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion

Quite a few outings were planned last weekend as Big Jiu Jiu was in town. One of the places of attraction that we visited was the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion.

We have heard a lot about this award winning gem, one of the more notable one is the 2000 UNESCO 'Most Excellent' Heritage Conservation Award, but have yet to visit the place since it was opened to public a few years ago.

We will not rate our last weekend visit to be a good one; it consists of both good and bad experiences.

Lets start with the good ones shall we?

The Goods
The place is a beauty. Restoration was done at its best and we were truly awed. We may be able to find similar antiques and cultures at other museum elsewhere but this place is made more awesome by their guided tour.
Without the commentary, we might not appreciate it as much.

Our commentator of the day, Ms Sally has done a great job guiding us through the 1 hour tour. We were charged RM12 per pax for the tour.

Samuel did not fuss much over the one hour too, he stayed close to the entourage throughout. The only time that he might have drawn a big attention was during the guest room tour. Samuel *instructed us quite loudly to go out; “Everybody go out already” : )

The Bad
It might be a case of rotten apple but that one tiny distasteful treatment was enough to tick us off.

We don't have good words for the staff there; we met only a few. One was busy behind the desk, one had very few words, another was disrespectful to visitors.

Conclusion is, the guided tour was impressive but we will have second thoughts recommending this place to any other tourist.
Their customer service left much less to be desired!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Nail Fixation

It used to be no easy feat to cut Samuel’s fingers' nail.

Once upon a time ago during Samuel baby days, Mommy once cut his nails a tad too short resulting in tinges of pain whenever the affected parts were exposed to wind or water.
Samuel did not let go of that incident easily. He exercised caution thereafter and only allowed us to cut his nail after much cajoling and assurance that we would be extra careful when cutting his nail.
He slowly accepted this manicure and pedicure routine of his not long after.

But recently, he is becoming obsessed with his nails. He will pester us day-in-day-out to cut his nail for him even if it’s just a tiny bit long.
He even has “nightmares” about long nails and would mutter in his sleep to have them cut.

: O

We are not sure if this is just another phase, but we ain’t complaining aloud.
After all, Samuel is having clean short nails everyday now : )

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Teeth, The Manja and The Defeat

Why Samuel’s toothpaste is finishing twice as fast?
Samuel can follow our instructions on how to brush his teeth almost to perfect but some.
He loves to squat down imitating Mommy as Mommy would squat when demonstrating to Samuel on how to brush the teeth.
Samuel likes to open his mouth wide for the brushing session and will brush his lower front and back teeth to perfection.
Samuel can spit and gargle but not before swallowing his tooth paste.

So, even though Samuel has brushed his own teeth, Mommy will still brush them for him again.
Double the clean! : )

Why Samuel is super-manja lately?
That’s because Po Po is in town.

When Po Po is around, Samuel favors his Po Po more than Mommy and Yee Yee. He will ask for his Po Po day-in day-out at every opportunity that he has; to play with him, showing all his tricks, to accompany him to sleep and about almost everything else.

That’s how he tells his Po Po he miss her. Afterall, Samuel only sees his Po Po about once a month.

Why Daddy and Mommy concede defeat finally?
We have no doubts Samuel will pick up stuffs that interest him fast. But we had no idea how fast it could be.

While Mommy and Daddy still have to read the dino’s name printed at their tummy at times, Samuel knows all his dinosaurs’ names by heart; a few are named after their cartoon characters while the rest by their scientific names.

He calls this pa-chy-say (cep)-ha-lo-sau-rus.

That's a 7 syllabus word there!
: O

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What Time Is It?

Samuel knows the different between the morning, the afternoon and the evening. He can recite all the 7 days in a week. But Samuel does not understand the concept of time of the day yet.

It is not our intention to teach Samuel to read the time now but we are re-considering it since Samuel is showing keen interest in the clock.

It all started with a little assurance that we gave Samuel to help him overcome his daycare phobia a few weeks back. We showed him the clock and the time that we would be picking him up for the day.
Samuel is slowly getting a grip of it; he knows what time is it that the clock indicates when the long needle is pointing to 12 and the short needle is pointing elsewhere.

But that’s about it.

He will be confused if the long needle is not pointing at 12. And he will be asking us every time if he happens to see the clock then.

We are tempted to teach him….
But couldn’t really expect a 2.5 years old child to understand the concept of seconds, minutes and hours, could we?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Parent’s Day

Samuel is still too young to apprehend what is Mother’s Day. We are not expecting anything particular from him on this day that honors all mothers.

So it is indeed one very sweet surprise when we received a *gift from him; a singing clip made by his Daycare, starring our little Darling of course.

His daycare has introduced a new song to all the 2 and above years old children the week before and not sooner, perhaps not to spoil the surprise.

Got them to sing the song individually,

Had them captured in videos,

And placed the individual CD a heart shape holder for the parents with the wish "Happy Parent’s Day".
We think it’s very thoughtful of them to use the word parents instead : )

His teacher commented that Samuel was very brave and confident as he sang the song aloud complete with hand actions without much prompting from the teachers.

This is the song he sang, not the same video.
Samuel sang it many many times after that at home.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Spice and Sugar

Samuel has always stayed away from spicy food. If he has accidentally taken some, he would want to spit them out immediately. If Mommy’s hand is not within reach to help him with his spit, then he would shallow them hard and gallop loads of water.

Today however, he couldn’t resist the crunchy curry puff that Mommy was having. Mommy only let Samuel tried the pastry and not the filling. Traces of curries on the pastry couldn’t be avoided though.
So yeah, it was spicy but Samuel still asked for more.
He downed 2 cups of water in between bites : )

Samuel has never fancies cakes too. But this has since changed.It all started with the sponge mini cupcakes Mommy had baked a few weeks ago. He liked to pop the mini cake into his mouth.
Now, cup or no cup, Samuel is taking all types of cakes baked by Mommy : )

He asked for jackfruit while we were doing groceries shopping today but refused to take it later in the house. Perhaps had his doubt on trying new food again.
So Mommy tried something different.

There, problem solved.

Samuel absolutely loves the jackfruit cake!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Penang War Museum

Nowadays we spend more of our Saturdays out and about in Penang since a holiday abroad will need more planning and not to mention the more spending ; )

Last-last Saturday saw us visit the Aquarium again.

The Aquarium still fascinates our Boy. This time round, Samuel could relate more to the fish and could identify more of them. The feeding session was still his favorite.

And last Saturday, we went to the War Museum. It was raining earlier, the road was still damp by the time we reached the museum.

It was our first visit, we were expecting an exhibition hall with artifacts and loads of canons. But what we saw was a total contrast.

The entrance ticket to the museum is RM15 for Mykad holders and free for kids aged 4 and below.
They have packages for pinball war games and others too but we were not into those.

We were impressed with what we saw but not drawn-to it. The museum is an actual preserved fortress with actual relics, barracks, tunnels, artifacts etc with little refurbishment work done. No exhibition hall and nothing like we had prepared ourselves for.

The tour around the museum was not guided. A map was all given and we were all but ready to go. We were supposed to follow the red color arrows marks on the ground and explore on our own, which we find a bit eerie. We were in the middle of nowhere and most of the time with only our own company. We ain’t seeing any officers patrolling or anyone watching over the place. The place is like a maze circling around itself. With all the old relics here and there, we were not thrilled and certainly not ecstatic to show our Boy more.

Samuel was un-perturbed though. He was excited as usual with his thousands of what-and-why-questions.
We did not tour the whole place and made a quick exit. Some notable ones that we’ve visited were the Canon Firing Bays, Observation Post, Barracks and Chambers.

It was a good educational trip for us adult.
Not so much of a fun outing for kids though. But not that Samuel is complaining la!

Monday, May 04, 2009

That Warm Garment Waist Up

Samuel is perfecting his pants wearing skill now and is almost there. He can wear his pants alright and is heaps better on getting them inside-out or infront-back correctly.

He has now move-on to his shirt and socks. He is still very rough in terms of taking-off and putting-on his shirt as he will force his way through and will pull his shirt almost into pieces.

So, to ease this learning phase, Mommy will let Samuel has his way with his loose fitting somewhat-worn-out shirts.
With those better shirts however, Mommy is not washing her hands off just yet.

This is Samuel looking very please after completing his feat.
Yes, he did it all by himself.

He knows that the big hole, aka the bottom opening goes into his head first and comes out from the neck opening.

He knows that he needs to put one hand first from under the big hole, aka the bottom opening to the small hole, aka the sleeve opening

And he knows that he needs to do the same for the other hand too.

After that he will pull his shirt down and covers his tummy.

Mission accomplished!

Here is another thumbs-up after he wears his socks.

Mommy has had a video captured on this but has yet to figure out how to upload it. Google video is not hosting new clips anymore, so next time yah?