With the National Schools Games Swimming Championships 2017 coming up, our coaches have been sending in recommendation letters to schools (and their CCA / PE in-charge) to inform them about the performance of our swimmers. Our swimmers train hard and have been doing better and better. Many of them meet the qualifying time for the championships.
We have received some very positive responses from HODs who said that they will do do the necessary and the schools will definitely support their students. Even if it's a lone swimmer.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
At the same time, we also received very disappointing responses from some middle managers. These two are the more extreme ones.
1. They do not send in individual swimmers. (I guess too much work and RAMS for the teachers. The one swimmer may not win and the school find that it's not worth the effort. [I GUESS])
2. My student was told not to go and waste time and embarrass herself. (She meets the qualifying time.) She also shouldn't go and be the last and make everyone wait for her to finish swimming. (Which educator will ever say that to a student?)
(Feedback from students - will try and see if it's possible to verify)
I hope time changes things and changes people.
We need to do more for the child, for the children.
We will keep training.
We will keep recommending.
As long as our swimmers work hard, we do what we can for them.
(I came from MOE, don't say I don't understand the workload. I was in charge of a champion track team before. Don't make me tell you how hard my teachers and I worked.)
This morning we had our usual breakfast with Laogong and then while he coached, Ollie played and I slacked. I wasn't expecting anything like what happened to happen during lunch with IJ Pals. She was still strolling steadily with her Nano Speedy hooked stylishly on her arm into Mercure. All seemed fine. She went into the vip room and all still seemed fine.
Then... Why suddenly cranky!
So she went from smiley face to wailing out loud. Sobbing like it's the end of the world. We usually don't entertain such situations and we don't allow anyone around to interfere. (Don't worry, children don't die from crying and I'm not a murderer wanabe). She cried for 20minutes and I text the Laogong, got a reply, "Let her cry." She cried for another 15min maybe. I really don't know why. Maybe she prefers the main dining area to the vip room? "Auntie Jo, no need special room next time, please! :p"
She finally turned smiley again when she saw Uncle Ron, don't ask me why! And finally she started playing a bit with the aunties. Played on her on with her favourite Auntie Daze, without me. Played with Auntie Jas and Auntie Chris. All the tears and laughters all in two hours!
Anyway... Fast forward to night time...
I had a dinner date to celebrate Carol's birthday and inlaws were always so nice to help me look after Ollie.
What's really emotional / highlight (haha) was...
FIL texted at 9+ to say Ollie slept.
I was surprised. And when home, I asked MIL how did she fall asleep.
She told me that Ollie asked for bread and milk and then asked MIL to pat her to sleep.
I almost teared.
I told laogong about it and he was like, latch too often you also emo, don't latch, you also emo.
I guess to me, it's a huge change!
She used to cry herself to sleep if I'm not around, now, she can ask for food and drinks to fill her tummy and to be patted to sleep (without me!!)!
(This was taken on Saturday night, 10pm, when Ollie suddenly decided not to sleep and dress up for play, all by herself. She put on the shoes and my cap, hopped on her little car and instructed the Papa to take a photo of her, for her.)
It came at a time where I asked Laogong if it's OK that I'm not teaching anything school-style and school-way for Ollie. (I just want to make sure he sort of is having the same mentality as me.) I'm just letting Ollie play around, run around, swim, shop and live the daily life we live at the moment. She is not going to school yet and highly, definitely later on, No. I just want Ollie to play. Unstructured play. And wow, she is doing good, by my standards, of course.
I always face questions about homeschooling Ollie and mainly I'll say that I don't want her to be caught in the rat race (contradicting I know, especially when our family business is highly educational, the Singapore way, but well the business does not equate to parenting ideas).
I guess the sharing of the article came at the right time, assuring me that it's fine to let Ollie play away. But again, I guess, knowing myself, even without the article, I'm just doing it my way.
Childhood is a very precious commodity.
Being able to be play it away, I think is very important.
It was a trip of a lifetime. Previously I blogged about losing my Kelly in Paris but seriously, believe it or not, we did fine and well. It happened on the first night. We continued on with the trip. Visited Disney Land. Shopped on. Dined on. I guess sometimes people, find it difficult how we can remain so positive in times like that. (I said remain positive, not heartless or emotionless. Of course I'm sad I lost my Kelly and Ollie's backpack and all other stuff, come on, you know the value of the things I use. Of course we knew about the inconvenience without travel documents and remaking everything.) But hey! The Earth continues moving. No one stops for me. We can either choose to move on in Paris or stay in the hotel to cry everyday? Of course, we moved on!
Yes, we shortened the trip. We needed to get back to settle the travel documents. So, we paid a lot more to be back one day earlier.
Anyway, that aside, Paris is great. Had lovely friends with us. Love the weather. We kept ourselves very warm (too warm on some days, haha). Love the bread and butter and cheese. We had that almost every meal. How not to love the escargot too. Haha. Thankful that my clothes still fit. Haha. Love the coffee. Absolutely yummy coffee. Love the wine and beer. Cheaper than water! What else but... Love the shopping!!! The shopping rocks in Paris. Thankful I got most of what I wanted. But well, shopping and buying, never enough anyway. Thankful that Laogong tries his best to make everything work too. I can be a very difficult and wilful spouse at time.
Thankful for family that know us or me well. I cannot stand nagging. So when they found out about it, they simply kept their messages and concern sweet and short. No nagging. No repeatedly telling us be careful x 100,000.
Thankful that we are safe and sound and back home. See you maybe in August or maybe in 2018 again, Paris. I still love you. You presented me the worst situation in the best way because no one was hurt and my precious Ollie didn't feel a thing.
Thank you, Paris.
I'll just take and keep, the best memories.
(Updates: Back home, passports made, expedite. Sim card replaced. Phone bought. Mainly back to normal routine. Thank you everyone for your warm welcome back! Lots love for you all)
We met S and family on the first day for lunch and shopping at Galeries Lafayette. When it was about 5pm, we decided to head over to Hermes to pick up my bags. Said our goodbyes and arranged to meet the next day at Disneyland.
Shopped at Hermes and constantly reminded ourselves to transfer everything into the huge Hello Kitty recyclable bag. We forgot. We left and Ollie wanted to be carried using the tula. I left my Kelly in the stroller and used my jacket to cover the bag. We were too tired by then to remind ourselves to carry the Kelly instead. Really, we would actually never leave it just in the stroller even if it's using the jacket to cover it.
We started to stroll back.
Stopped at Carrefour City supermarket to get some drinks. Laogong went to pay and I stood with the stroller near the entrance and trolleys. Thief A came to get a trolley and knocked into me, and apologized. I ignored. After awhile, he came and ask me to take a photo of him and the fruits. Let my guard down. Turned around. Took his phone. Camera app wasn't turn on. (Accomplice Thief B and. C, D must have grabbed my bag then) He grabbed his phone back. My jacket was on the floor. My Kelly was gone. Screamed for laogong. Of course everything happened so quickly we didn't managed to get back my Kelly (inside with Ollie's Lv mini backpack, another mini pochette, money & cards, selfie camera, two phones and our passports!).
Too stunned for words. Laogong comforted me that it was just material loss. Ollie and I are fine. Thinking back. I'm still stunned but totally thankful. It was just the bags and money and inconvenience. Our blessed lives are fine. No knife pointed at us. No shock. No fall (decade ago in Malacca, a snatch thief tried to grab my bag and I fell and had bodily aches for a week). That aside, a missing Kelly is of zero significance compared to the safety of Ollie and us.
We made a police report. Contacted the embassy. All is fine. We are fine. Thank you fate. You created such a major situation on the first day of cny 大年初一, major 犯太岁 situation. The following 364 days will be as fabulous as ever. But I believe everything happens for a reason. Life is good. Life is blessed. Simply because we are safe. We will continue to enjoy Paris and shop on. And yes, we will definitely come back the next time.
Side note: Of course I am upset I lost my first Kelly and Ollie's lv limited ed pack back and my limited edition mini pochette and everything else (my selfie cam too!) but material thing can be earned back easily.
I'm thankful we're all fine!
So don't worry everyone. I'm contactable via fb msger only or well, Jerry is very much contactable. My Bro has also helped us with necessary contacts. See you all back in Sg / Msia / Social Media (haha) soon!
Oh yes, sorry if I didn't help you to buy your things! I try k!
We woke up unexpectedly early this morning at 0828. Or rather, Ollie woke me up. I would pretty much prefer to continue sleeping. It's a vicious cycle, haha, I woke Laogong up too! By 0900 we were out at our favourite coffeeshop having breakfast. Came back home to play, slack, digest and Laogong was off for his run.
Ollie & I decided, I mean, I decided to take Ollie to the taman's supermarket (socialise with the neighbourhood peeps, real life learning of fruits and vegetables, learn to pay money, get back change, etc, homeschoolers rock :) ) She always gets excited at the supermarket, sensory overload, maybe. Her favourite section has to be at the ice cream chillers.
Got our stuff, her ice cream and we headed back home. Major love this ice cream. I need to buy these food packs and make my own. They don't drip and it's so much cleaner! Now, where do I buy these food packs? The papa returned home and they had some bonding time playing / car washing.
Simple morning but lots of laughter and smiles from Ollie. Happiness, never too much.
We are not a family who fancy staycations but well, free room and free meals (we have a membership with the Millennium Hotels Group), let's go! And we did. Only to miss home more. Haha. We really love our home.
We took the van out instead of the car and since there are still toys/presents waiting to be opened (the van is like our mobile storage space, haha) we took a box up for Ollie to unwrap! She always loves opening presents, who doesn't :)
We had dinner at the hotel and I think the sugar overload gave Ollie the much-unnecessary energy boost. Oh my, she slept only at 0030. She was totally high and active!
I think I fell asleep before her!
We all woke up close to 10 in the morning. Had a quick swim (the water was too cold) and we headed to Rochor for breakfast. Went to the temple and did some shopping.
Well, time spent with family is always well spent. 2017 has been good and I'm sure, moving on even better!
Two days into 2017 and life has been good and just like what I told Laogong, it will definitely get better!
There is a high level of anticipation for many going-to-happen-events. Totally excited. There are weddings to attend, trips to go, shops opening, swim events, academic events and endless things I want to do with Ollie. I will definitely try to start a co-op for the young ones when Ollie is ready for it, especially since we have a good space for it now.
I always think back about how inspirational Mummy has been to me, and still is of course. She is one who dared to try, who went all out to make it in life. She did and she did her best to return to the society. Have been thinking a lot about her always. Sometimes more, sometimes less. But with so many happenings going to happen soon, I think of her even more. How she managed her life last time, how she handled so many happenings.
Maybe also because of these two weeks spent at home with Laogong and Ollie. Massive decluttering of the house and things also somehow led to massive decluttering of the emotions and life. I look at the all the trash bags of things thrown / donated / sold... I think, for once, I am really going to slow down on shopping. Haha, I know, hilarious. But, really. I look at my wardrobes of tens of thousands of designer clothes and my Kellies all over the floor / chair (none in boxes, I don't baby my things) and those thousand-dollars-slippers... Oh gosh, what a life I had. I really need to rethink my life. I am not saying I am not going to shop but I will really buy less. I think I need to give even more to the society. Do more for the society. Blessed we are and yes, let's do it! Return to the society.
I have to quote Sharon, "You know it's Christmas when everyone starts eating and shopping too much!"
Totally true I would say!
This year, we chose not to travel in December and just stay home during our 2 weeks break. Partly also because we've been travelling a tad too much previously.
We enjoyed the minor works, cleaning and preparing of the house for the upcoming gatherings and guests who will be visiting us in Malaysia.
We also have been spending time 24/7 together and loving all the moments. Despite the fact that we already spend a lot of time together on normal days, we still totally enjoy this unusual stay-home-vacation.
Our family tradition of no-gift (but please donate) continues. However, thank you Uncles, Aunties, Kor Kors and Jie Jies for your kind generosity. Ollie is very blessed to receive all the gifts and love.
My Sundays are usually spent at Papa's place where we chill and have our three meals together. Today, he was busy with his voluntary work. Bro was busy with attending a wedding or was it two? The helper had her off day. Ollie and I still managed to have breakfast with the Bro. Then, she played around a bit. I did some alterations on the machine. She napped a bit. And we went out to have lunch with laogong. Haha, luckily he had an extended lunch break in between lessons today. So yay! We had company.
We had lunch. We took Ollie to the stadium to run and play around. Laogong rested a bit before he headed back for the remaining two classes. Well, Ollie and I then did what we do best. Shop. Two hours is a decent time for us to shop together, including a Llao Llao break. Went back to fetch laogong and prior to that, I sent him a text message to tell him not to faint when he open up the back of the car. (shopping bags and more). The two are now fast asleep (since a couple of hours ago).
I enjoyed quite a bit of my me-time. Packing for tomorrow's trip, an episode of drama. Clearing up phone storage (for more pictures). I guess, it's a great day after all, despite missing out time with Papa today. Next week then!
It was a long seventeen days. Far too long for comfort. Laogong went for his overseas reservist recently. Despite the planned itinerary, Ollie and I weren't able to complete all the trips. I was down physically and emotionally for a few days. Counting down for Laogong to be back was really terrible. I cannot and will not understand the need for such a long exercise (and those past exercises). Or rather, as a wife and mother of a young child, I refused to be understanding. Of course, he had to go. He went. And I dread the next one which might be in two years? Whatever.
For now, we are thankful for him to be home with us! I guess it was extra hard for me / us because we are the Liam Ti Ti 粘体体 family. We spend so much time together all the time. Cheers to our Liam Ti Ti moments again!
The other morning, Ollie woke up at 0745 and looked down at the pool, tugging at me to take her down. Sleepy and knowing that the water was cold, I still woke myself up and took her down. Well, seeing is believing, no, I mean ... in this case, feeling is believing (and learning).
(P.E. Teacher is serving his reservist, so the multi-purpose-teacher had to take over his lessons.)
She was all eager to change and head to the pool.
At the pool, she eagerly removed her slippers and walked to the baby pool.
Within a minute, she walked back to the chair and sat down. Then, she put on her slippers and pointed to home.
I was still very sleepy but I'm glad she had learnt this lesson! It is very easy for us to tell her how cold the water is but at this point, it is much easier for her to simply head to the pool and feel it for herself. Ollie is very much a spatial learner. She generally thinks in pictures than in words. She also has a strong kinesthetic preference for learning where she prefers using her body/hands/touch. I remember how she used to want to touch my cup of hot tea or bowl of hot soup, so, I let her. She has to feel it to learn why I did not allow her to do that. And yes, she learned her lesson well.
I'm glad her learning made up for the lack of sleep for that day! Keep expressing your interest to learn, Ollie. Unschool one day, world school another day, we do it your way!
Equally excited, we told Ollie last night that the Fanpekka Theme Park (at the new wing of Aeon Tebrau) is opening today and we will take her there in the morning. We woke up at 9ish, headed for breakfast and reached Aeon at 10ish, rather surprised with the queue to the carpark. So, H&M and many other shops were all opening too! We made our way to Fanpekka, seems nice. . . But . . . 10am was only for media invite. Omg. Disappointment was all over Ollie's face. And she held back her tears when she realised we're not going in. Seeing that, I almost cried. How did a 23mo hold back her tears? We took her shopping and also bought her ice-cream, but her usual smiles were weak and bare.
We had crazy ideas to cancel all schedule for today but decided against it as the weather turned better and most importantly, we must teach her right values. Responsibility. Also, Fanpekka is not going to run away! I'm also proud of you, Ollie, you didn't cry your lungs out knowing that the theme park was not opened to public today. You didn't throw any tantrum. All these, actually made us very proud of you, although a bit of a heart ache to see you down too. Don't worry! Lots fun over the next few days. Today, we learn about disappointment and handling disappointment . You did well, very well!
It's been such a busy busy month! Before I know it, it's past mid-September! Time flies too fast, way too fast! The same thing I have to say for Ollie, she is growing up too fast, way too fast!
If we stay over in SG, we sometimes head over to Ikea for breakfast. Ollie loves the waffle and egg from them. She can sit on her own to eat nowadays albeit the slight mess but yes, she can! Cutie and her trio came over to swim and play that week too.
Sundays back at 外公's place is always full of fun. Play whole day!
That Monday, Laogong went for his Ironman bike practice, I took Ollie out to meet the mamas for lunch at Marmalade Pantry. We managed to hang out with Fio for a while too!
Took Ollie out shopping as usual and she had so much fun that she fell asleep almost immediately in the car on the way back.
We signed up for Legoland's Annual Pass. Laogong loves theme parks. Since this is the nearest to home for us, and there was a promotion for residents, we decided to do it! Ollie loves the boat ride. She wants to go on it every time we're there! Of course, she loves the shopping too. It's amusing how she walks over to the trolley bay and starts to push one on her own, every time we're there.
Took her to our favourite store at the moment, to collect our loots!
We visited Teresa who of course fed us well again. Thank you so much always. Ollie also had fun with Noah Kor Kor! Thank you Noah!
Just yesterday, we had breakfast at Ikea again. Then we headed to the airport for the #dinomoov station. I'm not sure if it's a permanent thing though. T3 is a fun place to be with yummy food, playgrounds and ample space to run around.
Ollie and I then headed to MBS to shop and had early dinner with the pretty aunties. We had to leave earlier than expected because of the night function back in the North.
Busy busy first half of September.
Next, we busy ourselves in anticipation for the five trips coming up!
Laogong's Ironman (full!!!!) in Taiwan.
BKK Trip with Ollie's Godma.
Visiting V in Jakarta.
Bali Escapade with the IJ Pals.
TWFEC Bonding Trip to Desaru.
And the unplanned Dec short trip back to our 3rd home, Thailand.
It's been a long while since we changed from the previous car seat to this. We've come a long way. The initial excruciating experience was terrifying. I threw the car key and said I never ever want to drive with Ollie in the car again. Her loud wails were scary. Not to forget, she was back facing and couldn't see me, she couldn't feel the air conditioning blowing at her, it was horrible.
Today, I turned around (while the car was parked) and saw a complete contrast. She escaped from the belts, unbuckled on her own, turn off the video and waited for me to get down the car to wear the shoes of her choice. I'm thankful for her progress, thankful to Barney maybe. Haha.