Thursday, February 24, 2011

Academe

When we scouted the kindergarten for Samuel 2 years back, distance and comfort was our main deciding criteria.
Choosing the Primary School for Samuel though, it’s a tad more complicated and a lot more consideration of this and that is required. ‘Ya know such as type of school, type of secondary school, potentiality and all the nits and the picks
It’s not something that we are taking lightly on.

Having said that, we have more or less set our mind on one of the nearby school last year. It’s only today, a few days shy of the registering date that we went to check out the school. Mainly to put our mind at ease that this school indeed is ……

well, lets just say our minds are at ease now.

We arrived right in midst of the school recess time.
What we’ve gathered about this school from word-of-mouth and from our visit:

  • This is not the top school at our area;
    of which we gotta point out that, this is not our main deciding criteria.
    .
  • This school is not located by the main road;
    so road congestion and parking is not a big issue here.
    .
  • We walked in through a small opening of the front gate, through a security check point.
    The students were having their break time; eating, running and playing.
    Some parents were around; presumably to bring snack for their children.
    There’s no children fighting in sight nor could we see any unpleasant scenes.
    .
  • As we need to use the washroom, we decided to check ‘em out too.
    We are glad to report that they are in working condition with ok level of cleanliness. Hey, we are not taking about 5-star hotel restroom here. It’s a school!
    .
  • While we were at it, of course not to be missed is a visit to the canteen.
    It's typical but quite orderly we must say. Perhaps it's already end of recess time.
    It was not swamped with student nor it was too crowded.
    .
  • The school is rather small with only a few buildings; 4 floors max, a green field, a hall, some offices and some student’s corners.
    They have both morning and afternoon session.
    All Year 1 will have to attend the afternoon session.
    .
  • Usually, there will be around 6-7 Year 1 classes. They will be randomly placed into a class. Year 2 onwards placing will be accordance to their Year 1 progress.
    There’ll around 30-15 students per class.
    .
  • We chanced upon 2 teachers and both are friendly and helpful.
    We also went to the Admin Office to check out the registration.
    .
  • No artful illicit graffiti visible; all walls are intact and errr.. still pretty.
    .
  • Another thing that we notice is, the school is quite shady with considerable amount of greens and trees.
    This is very unlike some of the front view school where we only see buildings and sun rays.

Overall, we are happy with what we see.
But we still have options, there’re another 2 schools available within our area. We are still thinking if we should check ‘em out.

Hmmmm…

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Kek Lok Si Temple - Day and Night



To avoid the night crowd frenzy last year, we visited the Kek Lok Si Temple during the day to see the lantern deco.
We did not have such plan this year but it was a beautiful morning the Saturday before last, on the spur of the breakfast moment then we decided to visit Kek Lok Si again.
So off we went to the mid hill, parked our car and walked around.

Photo snapping was restricted since we did not bring our gadgets; all shots were taken using our cell phone. The weather was not too hot since it’s still early. Made it just right for us to stroll around.

The Pagoda

The Bell

The Blossom

The Lanterns

The Handsome-s
: )

But then there were lots of stairs to climb and when the sun sat right above our head, the rays were not so bearable anymore….
Candle Princess :p
Suffice it to say, we left when noon hit.

To the Spring Chamber Restaurant again.

That’s the end of our short day visit to Kek Lok Si Temple this New Year.


The few days following then, Mommy was bugged by a same thought over and over. If we could survive this crowd, surely the night crowd at the Kek Lok Si shouldn’t be an issue right?

Look at us then with the umbrella and all!

So yup. We planned for a second visit to Kek Lok Si again the following week. This time for the night lights.

We went early before dusk; to ensure a parking and of course to avoid jam.
But there’s no jam what-so-ever that day, perhaps it’s off peak season as it’s already a few days after Chap Goh Mei. The inclined lift and the Kuan Yin Statue section have been closed; only the main temple and the pagoda section with their lights are opened.
That explains….


Grand arrival

Samuel was in a pose-y mood that day.

Perhaps excited with all the lights and perhaps overjoyed as Small Jiu Jiu was around ever willing to carry him :p

The lights were switched on around 7.30pm in stages.



Love the orange sky….
Love Samuel’s big pose

Blue Sky

Dark Sky

Taking a break


Photography enthusiasts were seen everywhere. We gotta wait in queue to take photos of certain view

But then, that also means many pro-photographer were to lend a helping hand.

'Cos timer just won’t do taking a photo from this angle : )


Although Mommy has seen the same lights deco for at least 3 times for the past years, Mommy was still mesmerized by its sheer pretty.

So now, the question is… are we up for a trip next year again?



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

2011 Penang Chinese New Year Cultural and Heritage Celebration


For 2 years in a row now, we have heard a lot about the Chinese New Year Cultural and Heritage Celebration at the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The grand and merry and not to be missed event brought by the Penang State Government, the Penang Chinese Clan Council and the Penang Clan Association.

This year, we hesitated a bit but decided that the dreaded thought of circling for hours in town looking for a car park and Mommy’s queasiness were not enough to deter our celebrating spirit. It’s Chinese New Year, y’all!
: )
Furthermore, Samuel is big enough for these big events already.
He could appreciate culture more now and would definitely be fascinated by all the Chinese arts and dance and deco.

So came last last Saturday, Mommy, Samuel and Big Yee Yee braved the traffic and made our way to the Heritage Site. It took us a tad less than an hour to reach there despite bad traffic and was very lucky to get a parking along Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling. Oh so goody we thought!
Hmmm….. but then it started to drizzle a bit.
Thinking that a few drops of rain should not stop us, we armed ourselves with an umbrella and made our way.
Wantan mee dinner at a coffee shop was our first stop.

Boy oh boy… What a crowd! It was people-mountain-people-sea. Everywhere was crowded; by the road, in the middle of the road, by the stage, all kopitiam….
Everyone was in celebration mood!

After dinner, we made our way to the main stage area at Canon Square only to catch a glimpse of the dragon making its way out.
Ai yah, we missed the dragon dance performance by thatclose.
Samuel was still excited though, he couldn’t get his eyes off them. Made Mommy felt a bit guilty when Mommy distracted him to snap a photo :p

Samuel found even more excitement on the main stage, it was Acrobatic time then. We found a nice elevated platform where Samuel could watch the performance clearly…. until it started to rain again and his view blocked by all the umbrellas in front : (
Hmm….…

We went for shelter when the rain got heavier.
And when the weather did not turn,
and when all the performers themselves seek shelters,
left with nothing to do but to watch the raindrops, we left not long after that.

After we made a quick visit to a historic House Temple that was so rarely opened to public that day.

The crowd was still happening when we left though, Small Jiu Jiu and Christine Jie Jie stayed until almost midnight.

The event was great, too bad we couldn’t stay any longer.



Monday, February 14, 2011

2011 Year of the Rabbit




Life in the kampong

Nope, that’s not a copy and paste of last year’s Chinese New Year photos.
They’re the updated photos on this year’s celebration.

Our routine has not change. We spent the first 2 days of the year of the Rabbit here;
with a steamboat reunion dinner with Daddy’s family
and a visit to the Samuel’s Great grandma the following day.

We travelled back to Bidor a ‘lil later than usual on the second day in hope of catching the Lion Dance performance organized by our Condo Management. But that did not materialize as no lion was seen still after an hour of waiting. We made our move then, feeling a ‘lil setback.

But our festive mood quickly resumed once we were back at home in Bidor. It’s the usual merry and jolly and loud (from the children of course) celebration.

..... OK …...
a bit of confession here, the noise not only came from the children but the adults as well. Especially from Mommy friends who catches up once a year at Po Po’s place :p

Hey Gals, time to make that trip up north happen.
We are waiting here!

And of course there’s the yearly Lou Sang. We have been having it at home for a few years in a row now and will not be going anywhere anytime soon….

not until the children are more comfortable we guess : )

We did not see any lion dance in Bidor as well but back in Penang, Samuel’s school did arrange for one for their Pesta Gongxi Gongxi. The lion was a mini version suited for the kids.
The school has been always good in organizing this yearly party; kids are encouraged to dress in their Chinese Traditional Costume and bring some delicacies to be shared among their friends.

Samuel has asked for the butter cookies this year.

Back in Penang too, Daddy brought us for an early Valentine Dinner at the German Restaurant at the Strait Quay. The food was probably good but due to Mommy’s bizarre taste bud lately, all Mommy could taste of was beer.

Samuel did not complain though… not on the food anyway.

He did complain of tiredness and wanted to be carried the whole night through.

It has been a long week of celebration after all!




Sunday, February 13, 2011

5 Weeks

Yup, it has been long. Lets check back the happenings for the past month, shall we?


The boy is steadily growing into a tough and strong boy he is. Not to mention rowdy and loud at times.
We attribute this to a combination of pampered overdosed and lack of discipline control. Mommy has been sluggish at times (actually most of the time) lately and just let loose.
That being said, when we stand on our feet, we make sure that we are being heard!


We signed up Samuel for the Mandarin tuition class this year. Reason being that, the regular class is actually only offered this year. The school does have Mandarin special reading and elite programs for younger children but we did not opt for those; basic is what we are aiming for. We do not want to swamp Samuel with too much expectation at this point.


Those activities book which Big Yee Yee got Samuel many-many moons back are being out into good use now. Then Samuel merely does coloring and drawing. Now Samuel is able to read ‘em simple instructions and do the exercise on his own….


and will with absolutely no help from us what-so-ever.
Those blissful days!

We have been talking about Samuel’s feeding habit for a while now and how it gives us headache at times. He has no problem eating and feeding himself in the school at all. Back at home however, it’d take him an hour to finish a bowl of rice, not to mention that he prefers to be feed rather than feeding himself. We indulge him as he does eat more when being fed.
But a few weeks ago, we had enough of his antics and put our feet down. We ate-in for the following few days then just so we could discipline him at home. We don’t like to make any scene outside; big or small while making our point on how to behave properly at the dining table. He has show tremendous improvement since then. He still eats slowly but he is eating by himself now, complete with spoon on the right hand and fork on his left.

He has always been good with pasta but since we don’t have a photo of him eating his rice recently,


this will have to do!

And lastly, another tiny update before we wrap this long overdue post….

This is Samuel, after climbing hundreds of stairs.
Far behind is Mommy, catching her breath.

Our condo’s lift broke down last month, and while Mommy was whining left and right having to climb the stairs up and down,
not a squeak was heard from Samuel!

Now we know who is the fittest in the family eh?