Wednesday, 31 December 2014

As 2014 comes to a close (3)

I had only planned two - one for the kids, one for Sito+mf and just me. But as I looked through my photos, I realised that this concluding series for the year wouldn't be complete without talking about my friends.

One of the most significant things that happened with a friend this year must be CY and me being pregnant together and giving birth two months apart. It's so amazing that we've been pals for 20 odd years and now we're mums together. Gee, I feel old writing that last line!

My pregnant bestie and pregnant me, February 2014

I used to take pictures all the time. I still do - with the kids, less so with my friends. So this is a rare shot! Just sad that this isn't the whole lot of us. Still, the additions of the spouses and kids showed how far we have come!

My kopi/prata/whatever kakis, August 2014

So I went back to my old haunt after ZK at the beginning of last year. I'm still there, fortunately or unfortunately! *.* I give credit to my fun colleagues for taking the sting off the actual job!

My colleagues, May 2014

We were five and then we dropped the only male so that we could meet in the city on weekdays - evil :p I just realised I've been on holiday with all three of them, albeit of various durations: LS and G to Amsterdam, SX and G to Spain, G to Scandinavia. And LS and I had overlapping maternity leave - twice! Now that G has relocated to HK, our next lunch will be one girl short...

My city girls, November 2014

There are others as well, not captured on photos. There's Jo who's now in Germany - I just realised I haven't seen her in person for five years! And there's Yan, though technically, she's my cousin not my friend.. Also thought of SL - who knew that a chance meeting at Mothercare turned a friend's wife into a friend too, ha!

So with this (and perhaps a supper?), I guess I've rounded up my 2014. Here's a wonderful 2015!! Happy new year!

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

As 2014 comes to a close (2)

This year marks our fifth as husband and wife, eighth as a couple, and more than a decade as friends :)

And it's all good!

Despite two kids, I'm glad we still find time to do things together as just the two of us.

Like having steamboat buffet with free flow XLB? :p

We didn't start going on date nights until this year when ZK was more than 18 months. With ZY, however, we were more relaxed - we've been out a few times already! But the best dates are full-day daytime dates - we've watched a few movies this month, just like old times :)

And posed in front of the Taka Christmas tree again!

The kind chap who took it for us did a great job!

It has been a good end to 2014 for us both :)

And I haven't talked about mf and only mf for some time.. Well, so I went from this:

... to this:

The newly rebonded hair is no longer poker straight but I love my new look! Went to Sito's hairstylist downstairs at Shunji Matsuo and he did a good job, especially with my fringe - leave it to me, he said, and I'm glad I did!

Just weighed myself - I'm 1 kg heavier than I thought *.* But it's after dinner so I think I'm still only 4 kg away from my pre-ZK weight instead of 5 kg! I'm not one to exercise but I like to eat healthy though it's sometimes hard to fend off temptations...

So in recent months, we started to do away with meat at dinner time. I'm perfectly happy with just vegetables and even Sito has got used to it. We still get meat when we eat out but this one small step is significant - we have introduced more colours into our meals! I especially love brinjals and yellow zucchinis! Hopefully, that will lead to healthier us :)

Monday, 29 December 2014

As 2014 comes to a close (1)

This is for the kids. Next will be for Sito and me.

2014 has been such an exciting year. ZK has gone from few words to full sentences, and got promoted to a big brother when ZY came along.

He has also grown much taller!

We were at RWS last Saturday and at one point, I was watching ZK run about in his long jeans, which made him look really tall, and I thought, boy, has he grown! I really regret that it's not possible to video everything. I can only try to remember as much as I can.

ZK likes elephants, like his Papa, and he makes a sound that's like "ba-woo"

Very pleased with himself for being on the little ledge

But there are still things to work on...

Like his addiction to YouTube...

Though it keeps him quiet...

And his sleep - he wants to watch YouTube endlessly!

We were out at dinner when I took a screenshot off the camera. I saw him watching YouTube and spoke to him through the camera. He turned to look at the camera but didn't go to bed until a while later.

We much prefer him to watch Lion King on the laptop instead, where he has only two choices - to watch or not to watch, compared to YouTube where he has too many options and he keeps changing and skipping videos. Too many options are not a good thing from the development point of view.

And, speaking of Lion King, we find it educational - the cubs say "please"; Simba was naughty and reprimanded by his father; Simba says "sorry", there's good and there's evil; there's friendship and kinship; there's nature. Every time we watch it, either of us tries to give him a running commentary and ask him questions. He has only watched the whole movie at one shot once; the rest of the time, he just watched until "hakuna matata". His favourite scene is the stampede that killed Mufasa.

Took this photo while he was watching Lion King and having a brownie

(Poor Papa!)

Another thing to work on is brushing. It's hard work every morning! So we haven't progressed to twice a day yet. As the photo isn't clear, when he ate brownies the next day while watching Lion King again, I put a mirror in front of him to show him how dirty his teeth are!

ZY, of course, brought with him so much changes that I sometimes find it hard to record everything.

I can't flip yet but I can sit!

Ok, this is assisted but he's so cute - check out his chin!

So cool!

He prefers sitting to lying down already

And ZY is such a joy. More than once, teachers told me that he was such a nice boy to care for. Even teachers for other classes know him. I beamed every time. It's nice not to heard the word "cranky" often at all!

See? I'm a happy boy!

And I'm so happy to see that he likes books! The other day, we sat down to read together :)

English for ZK, Chinese for ZY

I want honey, like the bear!

And so that's it for this year. I'm expecting more in 2015 - for ZK to become more 懂事 as he turns three, and for ZY to eventually walk and progress to table food after we start him on solids come 1 January. Certainly looking forward to more cuteness too!

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Fire engines galore!

Not many know that our fire stations are open to visitors every Saturday morning. We decided to head for the nearest fire station the Saturday before Christmas - Alexandra Fire Station. We were so fortunate that the weather was beautiful so we parked at Ikea and walked over.

ZK likes to "twist" these days

I have seen photos of fire station visits at this fire station and the Central Fire Station - full of people! We kept our fingers crossed that people might still be away for the holidays that day... And then we saw two bus loads of students just before we got in *.*

But no problem, we got a separate tour, yeah! But as the staff were busy with preparation and the big group, we waited a bit.

A rare shot of ZK in his helmet from a nice lady in uniform

Before our visit, he kept talking about fireman's hats, bah! Same thing for the fireman, ZK practically ignored him. So Sito wore the real helmet and put on the heavy gear.

Sito suited up a little following an explanation on the parts of the fire engine

While ZK climbed up the truck and refused to come down!

I love it here!

Look at me, so high up!

Luckily, the staff were very nice and the tour was super kid-friendly - kids are free to explore safely! But eventually we coaxed him down to get to other parts.

Why are Papa and Mama so happy? I want to climb into a fire engine...

Into, not in front!

We couldn't go up the CPL - forgot what it stands for but it allows a platform to be raised up to 12 floors. Next was the smaller fire engine, the Red Rhino.

I want out!

Now I climb all I want behind Papa and Mama, yeah!

(Oh my gosh, I have fat arms!!!)

And then we went to waste some water.. Seriously, I thought it was such a waste of good water! I mean, it's nice to let visitors have a taste of what it's like hosing down a fire but perhaps each visitor should be limited to 10 seconds of hosing... Btw, we were spraying into a wall of trees, beyond which was apparently a very wet field.

At a pressure of 3 on a range of 1 to 10

Sito said the pressure was enough to force him back a little. Must be hard handling the water AND the heavy boy! The guy next to ZK is our guide that morning, Bryan, who was very nice to troublesome ZK :)

Another family of four joined us while we were at the first fire engine. While waiting for them to be done with the water, ZK found an ambulance. Oh, we also heard about three ambulance calls during our time there.

Driving, driving in my car...

Next, the pole! By then, we had more families and kids. We had to chant "firemen, firemen, please come down" (or "come down now", forgot :p) before the staff demonstrated the typical bear hug and a Singapore style - the latter looked a lot more stylo! Sito said anything Singapore style probably took less effort. Hoho!

So, which is which?

We moved on to the next part - fire bikes!

Heh heh... I press!

My boys! (We deposited ZY at infant care...)

I went up the bike too!

Our final stop was the control room. The station can control the traffic lights right outside so that in an emergency, the fire engines and ambulances can go out smoothly.

ZK being all serious and Papa being smiley

Papa's face changed when ZK turned kaypoh haha!

And so we ended our visit. Just nice for a little shopping at Ikea!

ZK in the trolley with elephants = no toddler running amok, phew!

ZK said he was hungry so we headed for the restaurant. Sito came back with meatballs, french fries, seafood rings, nasi lemak and a log cake. But ZK didn't want the meatballs or french fries! So just the seafood rings and log cake for him..

Wefie while waiting for Papa

A 3.5-year-old boy started crying behind us when we started eating. Kaypoh ZK got off his chair to ask him, "Are you ok?" So cute!!!!!!

In return, the boy shared his video

We had a good time! I think we'll make another trip, perhaps two years later with ZY? :)

Went to pick ZY up on the way home. And this ZK fell asleep during the short journey between school and home. Street clothes on the bed, yucks! But no choice...

My sweet tot, fast asleep

Friday, 19 December 2014

December progress of my boys

Have I mentioned that ZK is in nursery since 1 December?

His playgroup graduation certificate!

Big boy now :) And big boy says the darnest thing...

Last Sunday, he was around Sito at Mum's place and holding up a tractor with a trolley behind that was filled with tiny balls of paper when the trolley fell over. He told Sito, "You broken [sic] my troublesome truck!" And he had to say it more than once...

And that night, he was watching his videos as usual after his shower when the battery died. "No battery..." And when he saw me on my phone, "妈妈有 battery!" No way, my baby!

A couple of nights ago, he complained of a stomachache during video time. Sito brought ruyi oil in. ZK saw that and said, "I don't like the... smell.." Great, he's looking for words to express himself! In the mornings, we often tell each other "XX smells nice" or "XX is smelly!" around brushing and/or poo poo time. Just this morning, he said I was 臭臭 instead of smelly - my boy is bilingual!

Update 21 Dec 2014:
Oh wait, he had been bilingual for a while. Another example when we passed by a fruit stall:

ZK: Banana! 香蕉!
Papa: Yes, bananas are 香蕉 in Mandarin. What about apples?
ZK: ...
Papa: Apples are...
ZK: Nice!

I have too many photos like this *.*

He has also learnt how to button his shirt since late last month, though the buttons may not be aligned. And the buttons must be the easily accessible type, not the polo shirt type which is too high for him to see.

ZK 钮钮...

And this week, he has been such a good and brave little boy - he went to bed without me next to him! But I must go into the room with him, kiss him and say goodnight before I can leave him alone with ZY. It doesn't work all the time though. Last night, he insisted on our bed. Just now, I had to coax him with our excursion tomorrow.

Sometimes he prefers the floor - with his pillow on his head?!

Just this morning, I decided that it was high time he got off the changing mat. So I got him to stand on the floor below the changing mat and hold his hands against the cabinet while I wiped his poo poo. While I was doing that, he undid the child lock of the cabinet! Ah well... At least he understands when I tell him not to do certain things, like opening forbidden cabinets.

Oh, one thing I'm quite happy about - he seems to be discovering books... One morning late last month, I was nursing ZY, I think, when he picked up the childcare magazine and went, "So many 姐姐" :)

Actually, there was only one 姐姐 on that page *.*

Reading his magazine

Later, he found another copy of the magazine - cos the centre put one in each child's bag - and said they were the same!

He's also very naughty - nowadays he likes to grab whatever ZY has in his hands! And the funny thing is, when we asked him to give ZY a toy at Mother's place, he gave him a toy that he obviously thought was 不好玩的 *.*

Poor ZY was none the wiser!

I like to take off my clothes and irritate Mama! Hiak!

The other day, he was drawing all over his limbs so I decided to be naughtier - I took the pen over and made a kitty out of him :p

The cutest kitty ever

When he's naughty, sometimes he'll say that he should "stay in the corner". One day, he said just that and went into the room for 10 seconds and came out. I went in to check and this greeted me:

Lion was implicated *.*

And sometimes he acts like a baby... He follows us up to the infant area every day. It's quite funny to see him play alongside the little babies. I just hope he doesn't snatch toys away from any one of them *.*

On the floor with Hannah's sister, Naomi, who is older than ZY

But I must say he can be a sweet brother sometimes. He pretty much ignores ZY but when he feels like it, he will sayang him and even play with him.

Brothers side by side

Heh, ZY wasn't looking very happy then! But that morning was great fun :) The following weekend, he remembered lying on the mat with ZY and asked to do the same again by demonstrating the pose on his bed!

ZY likes to be with his brother though. He's always looking at ZK play whenever he's within his sight. And he can get very excited, kicking his legs about and smiling widely.

Yeah, I'm sitting with 哥哥!

At first, I was wondering whether ZK suddenly wanted to practise his "two" but I soon realised he was trying to "twist"! But that forlorn expression was such a mismatch with "twist"!!

Thanks to photo check-in at the centre, I get a lot of photos with ZY!


Hmm, does he look like me here??

Actually, I wanted to include the photo above to show my auntie look - check out ZY's orange hanky in my bra strap, ha! And suddenly, I thought ZY looked a lot like me here! Sito said I have that look.

Oh yes, and I have a new hairstyle - I decided on the length and let my stylist decide on everything else, and he was good! Love my new look :)

Just pure cuteness!!! Mama is so smitten @.@

Nowadays, he likes to sit and play. He had such fun on Sunday when he played with ZK's big car! One Saturday while I was out doing my pedicure, Papa let him half-sit half-lie down on the bed to play with a rattle.

Because Papa wants to play too :p

Dancing to a song he recognises from ZK's concert

(Please forgive my daikon ashi....!)

We also put him in the baby chair for the first time on 12 Dec 2014. He wasn't very upright but he was supported by the chair. Gave him toys to play but he didn't mouth them. He doesn't seem very keen on food, unlike ZK at this age.. ZK started solids at five months and a half. I'll wait until ZY turns full six months before introducing solids.

Not hungry?

And ZY gave me a nice surprise in the early hours of 14 Dec - I heard noises from his room, turned on the video and found him on his belly!! But besides that, we haven't seen him really flip yet...

So, ZY has been waking up lots to nurse at night for the past few weeks. A pacifier just won't do the trick, unlike for ZK, sighs... So I haven't managed to store milk at night or in the morning cos my boobs are all flat! But last night, he only woke to drink once and I woke suddenly to find that it was already 6.10 am and - I have extra milk to store!! Let's see if this marks a turning point in his sleep pattern...

And now, Christmas is coming! Last Sunday while ZY was on the baby gym early in the morning, I tried to do a little Christmas craft with ZK but he was so preoccupied with his phone :(

ZK pressed on only two balls of blu-tack

And this morning, he tore out a candy cane!!

But at least he was - kind of - willing to pose with the tree...

Mama is taking photos AGAIN... Shall I be naughty? I shall be CUTE!

Merry merry Christmas from Clan Sito! :)
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