Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Dream Came True!

Finally, we made it to Disneyland! We were planning for LA but since Charlotte was sick quite often after she started school, we decided to just go somewhere nearer. So we settled with Disneyland Hong Kong instead.

It was a fun filled vacation, tiring and exhausting but satisfying! I started to prep Charlotte that she has to be on the stroller when we go there weeks before because neither Pat nor I are able to carry her all around in Hong Kong. She did what as told and I guess after this trip she would probably find stroller is her best friend when she is tired on the road. She even fell asleep on the stroller (which I never thought this would happen).

We stayed at the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel for all 3 nights and the hotel offered a special Disneyland Park ticket for hotel guesses which we paid for 1 day price for 2 days visit. Furthermore, Charlotte's entrance was free!

It only took a short while to warm up Charlotte with all the Disney characters. When we had breakfast at the hotel on first morning, they had some Disney characters at the restaurant to greet the kids. At first she was a little uncomfortable when she saw Pluto but then when she saw Mickey she was all opened up. She gave Mickey a big hug!!!

We made to the park at 10am on the first day. Started with rides, games, meet the characters, and parades. We even took some of the rides 2x because it wasn't too crowded in the morning. She was really lighten up when the 3.30pm parade started. I guess she just didn't know what to expect. We were reserving our "seats" on the first row, right on the line where they marked the border between the parade route and visitors. When the parade started, she was so excited and kept shouting and calling for her friends "Hello Mickey!!", "Hello, Donald!!", "Mommy, mommy, Princess Ariel!!!", "Mommy, mommy, Woody!!"...Also, because we were sitting on the front row the dancers and performers kept approaching her and shook hand with her. She felt so welcomed! The evening parade was on Halloween theme, and that gave Charlotte a little scare especially with those make-ups and costumes. We called it a day at 9pm! We skipped the fireworks on the 1st day because Charlotte was really tired.

We returned to the park again the next day and continued with shows and rides that we didn't make it yesterday. Charlotte loved the theater show, we had Mickey, The Lion King, and also a 3D theater which Charlotte wasn't really enjoyed it. We left the park around noon and made our way to the Hong Kong city for shopping and food. We made it back to Disneyland Park again in the evening to catch the fireworks. It was spectacular although the LA Park has a better fireworks showcase.

Before the trip I had many worries spinning in my head, like what if Charlotte needs to nap in the afternoon, do we need to make a trip back to hotel then? What if Charlotte has constipation? What if Charlotte didn't want to sit on the stroller? What if she didn't want to eat any of the food available there? Thank God that He heard and answered my prayer, those were all been taken care off. Charlotte nap really well, including on the flights, at the park (on the stroller), in the MTR...she also had bowel movement twice during the 4 days stay, and she ate food served and available at the hotel, park, city and some back ups that I brought along.

Some goodies we bought this trip, mostly are for Charlotte.

Charlotte loves to draw and write so I can't help to get her a couple of her favorite character pens and a set of character crayon.

Then there was this very pretty neckband which light up when the button is pushed. It also changes color and it is especially pretty at night or at dark places. Charlotte wore it when she watched the evening parade.

Princess drinking cup with straw, something Charlotte always fascinated with and Mini Mouse cap which she wore throughout this entire trip. I also found a very nice photo album which is just perfect to keep all pictures taken this trip.

Didn't have much time to shop for bento stuff when we were at the city, I only managed to get these

but I got a birthday surprise from my Santa Honey! You know what? Thing comes best when you are least expecting it :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Drama Queen

This is a very funny discovery and I must write it down...

Last Saturday, it was a tough battle to fight just to get Charlotte to nap. Because we will be going to the Lantern Festival in the evening getting her to rest well before the party would be essential. We negotiate and negotiate but when it's time to go to the room she cried. I don't know what else to tell her just to get her go with the idea so I just sat there and looked at her.

Then suddenly I remembered that I don't have a picture of her crying. So I went to take the camera. She stopped crying and observed what I was up to. I took my camera and sat in front of her and said "mommy wants to take a picture and video of you crying, can?" She nodded and did this when the camera is on...

Look so real to you? Do you know when I said "ok stop! come over and let me show you" she immediately she smiled and ran towards me to check out the video clip.

A Belated Mid Autumn Celebration

Believe it or not, this year I did not buy any moon cake except for 1 small box of 公仔餅 (kong chai peng). It was a rather busy time for us this year, Charlotte started school in Aug and she was sick more frequent than ever, Brenda (our maid) was going home, and I was busy preparing for work transition and pass down before my 3 weeks full time off during the week of mid Autumn celebration. However, Charlotte still gets her lantern and just like every year my mom bought her the 1 st lantern. This year it's a very neat Mini Mouse lantern. In fact, we prefer the traditional lanterns than the modern battery operated ones as most of it come with a very loud and noisy music.

We didn't expect to have any celebration for Charlotte this year but just last week we received an invitation from the E&O Group that a Lantern Festival will be held at the Seri Tanjung Pinang on Sept 20th, again just like last year! I was very happy to receive this invitation and we definitely going to make it there early this time.

The first thing we saw when we arrived at Seri Tanjung Pinang was the Lion Dance! That was a very good welcoming icon. Charlotte got a very beautiful dough doll from an ang pow (red packet) she picked out from the lucky draw box. She chose a bird from a wide range of designs, could it be she is born in the year of Rooster?

Then we headed towards the exhibition/food booths. Charlotte was first attracted to the "candy" making booth. It was actually the "龙鬚糖" (sorry, I don't know what it is called in English) but they replaced the 龙鬚 with the "poh piah" skin instead.

I never thought Charlotte would like it because she isn't much of a sweet tooth baby and so I have never let her try it but Charlotte seemed to enjoy it! (just like the daddy, he was eyeing on the candy without the wrap, heheheee)!

It was also Charlotte's first experience with the trishaw. The organizer actually hired a nicely decorated trishaw and let their guests (I guess more for the children) to experience it. We also took the chance to sit on it and go for a few rounds :)

Then there was a series of stage performance and lantern riddle guessing. We spent only just a short while as the food they served wasn't suitable for the children, mostly spicy food, how sad. So we left and had our dinner at our favorite family restaurant somewhere in town.

It was a nice experience again for Charlotte and us to enjoy a Mid Autumn celebration.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

6th Sense Or Coincidence?

It's about 1 week away from my birthday and Charlotte started to sing the birthday song to me early this week. This is how she sang it:

Happy birthday to mommy, happy birthday to mommy...(she can go on and on and on with this sentence)
May (the) good Lord bless you, may (the) good Lord bless mommy...

When I first heard it, I was surprised to hear how she sang the 2nd verse. Maybe when she had birthday party in school the teachers taught them this.

Then she sang it again, to me specifically. Then only I realized that my birthday is just round the corner! I wonder how she comes to figure out when is my birthday? Is this children's 6th sense or it's just coincidence?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Puzzle is Charlotte's weakest game so far. A few months back, she couldn't even put these simple ones that I bought her long long time ago.

Lately I saw improvement in her in playing this game. She started to assemble those simple puzzles with some guidance from me and then she showed her interest in putting together this 9 pieces Barney puzzle which I bought her just to lure her to leave the toy store back then. In fact, she mastered it within a day and then keep repeating it for the next few days. She even brought it when we dine out (that gave us a good peaceful meal time too).

I then took out this 2 piece puzzles to test on her. Back then she was only able to match the pair but not fix the puzzles together. She used to put both pieces flat on the floor but to fix the puzzle she must lift either 1 side slightly off from the surface. I tried to show her but she just couldn't do it. This time, no guidance needed, she was able to do it right from the first time I open the box.

So I thought it's time to get her another one. I went to the toy store last weekends and got her this new 24 pieces puzzle. I was looking for something like maybe 15 pieces but all they had in the store was 24 and beyond. I thought it wasn't too difficult as each piece has an identity which can be easily recognized and so I bought it. With some guidance, she was able to complete it within the first day and it's a good game to keep her occupied for quite a long time as she plays it over and over again.

Today is the 3rd day since I introduced this new puzzle to her and all these time I sat beside her and guided her when she seemed unsure. To my surprise she was able to complete almost half of it all by herself in just a short while when I was gone to make her milk this afternoon. I realized that she probably just too rely on me when I was around. I took the puzzle to the kitchen as I was about to prepare dinner and asked her to complete it while keeping me accompany in the kitchen. I could see that she was really concentrating working on the puzzle and voila, she completes it all by herself in just a short while!

I am really pleased to see this accomplishment although I know some of my friend's child was able to complete more complicated ones way before. I know each child is unique, so I am just happy to discover this development in Charlotte.

Friday, September 12, 2008

A Pleasant Surprise!

After being absent from school for 7 days, Charlotte is back to school since last Wednesday. Actually I wasn't really sure if she should go back to school since she just recovering. Her first reaction was "No, I don't want to go kool" when I prompted her the school question in the morning. Then I thought "ok la, maybe tomorrow". I started to work on my emails while having my breakfast at the same time.

After about 10min, I asked her again the same question as I saw her sitting on the couch quietly and she said "yes!". This was how we started school again after a terrible fever and cough.

Friday is usually an easier day for Charlotte as the school will have the Praise and Worship session and I know she loves it. When I dropped her off at school, she said goodbye to me and went inside to meet her friends. As I was speaking to her teacher, another teacher called me "Charlotte's mommy, come and see this!". I stepped in further and saw 2 boys taking turn to hug Charlotte!

Her teacher then told me this:
Teacher M: Do you know, my boy (her son) always asked if Charlotte will be coming to school during her absence? He even told his daddy about Charlotte. (One of the boys hugged Charlotte was her son by the way)
Me: Oh! I guess she gets the attention by crying out loud every morning huh :p
Teacher K: No, everybody adores her! Most of the kids will go and touch her on her face, her hair or hug her.
Me: Yes ah?
Teacher K: Kids are like adults too, they love pretty people/things and Charlotte is a pretty girl, naturally gets the attention. My boy also likes to play with her.
Me: Haha, but she can be quite fierce and naughty too.
Teacher K: Hmm, I would say she is not easy to be taken advantage of. She knows how to complain and protect herself.
Me: Oh! (I acrually think this is a good thing :p)
Teacher K: But she is getting more stable now, we see good improvement

Apparently the 2 teacher's son like Charlotte and I feel more comfortable as I know she has friends now.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

3 Weeks

1st Nov 2006, Brenda (our maid) became part of our family. It took about 1 month for Charlotte to accept her at the start. Time flies, Brenda has almost completed her 2 years contract with us. Her 2nd year work permit was renewed till Sept 2008 because of her passport validity. So, she will be going to back this Saturday for a 3 weeks home leave.

She has agreed to return after her home leave and has made her promise. We renewed her passport and work permit again a couple of months back. We cross our fingers (and toes too) that we will see her at the arrival hall after 3 weeks.

I am not sure if I look forward to the 3 weeks full time off from work and be a full time stay-at-home-mom. I had been a stay-at-home-wife for 7 months a few years back. That's when Pat had his assignment in the US, we just got married and I decided to join him. The first few months were full of excitements and happily enjoying the shopping, explorations, vacations, workouts, cooking, sleeping, and all that fun, fun, fun. Things started to slow down at the 5th months, 6th months...I feel like I was rotting and getting lazier each day. We eat out more and more, stayed up later and later, woke up later and later too. We had a lot of fun with friends and events that we planned, but maybe because I didn't have Charlotte back then and when I was all by myself (when Pat goes to work) I feel like it was just too quiet. So I started to search for job and I was very lucky that I got the job a couple of weeks after and I came home.

Now that I have a very active and demanding toddler, I'm not so sure if I am able to deal with it all by myself. One part of me is looking forward to that no-rushing-with-time privilege, other part of me is worrying about all that 24x7 baby sitting and house chores running job. Charlotte isn't very attached to Brenda, only when mommy is not around or when I got really mad at her (Auntie Brenda is always there to rescue her mah). So I have one thing less to worry about. We have planned get-aways and that's all accommodating Charlotte's interests. My only hope is that vacations will be something less stressful than staying at home.

The other thing that we are worrying is that what do we tell Charlotte when she realizes Auntie Brenda is gone? She understands more things now and it is not easy to just brush things aside when she mentions it. She is also at the stage where she wants that particular things more especially when we are not able to give it to her. I am sure that I can't tell her Auntie Brenda has gone home I bet she would insist to follow. Just like if anyone visited us, they can never go home without Charlotte crying and wanting to follow. Although I know I should not be lying to her, Pat and I are thinking of what excuse to tell her that won't make her very interested but yet good enough to keep her on her feet and not a bad thing to say. Any recommendation :) ?

Oh God! I really pray for Brenda to show up after 3 weeks. I put a carrot in front for her that we promised her a close to 18% increment and PAID home leave and on top of that we will give her 1 month bonus when she returns (this valid for the subsequence years too). But I also know that she has 3 daughters at home, family influence would be something that holds her back. Oh....
After being absent for 7 days, Charlotte is getting back to school today and she seemed ready. I had a little bed time chat with her last night. She promised me that she will be a good girl, no cry when going back to school, no screaming and shouting either. She also prayed, repeated what I said and she normally ends her prayer by saying "thank you Jesus, Amen!"

When I first asked her that we are getting ready for school, she protested a little. Actually I wasn't so sure if I should send her to school since she just recovered. So, I didn't push hard and I sat on the dining table for my breakfast while running through my emails. About 15min later, I asked her if she wants to go to school and she said yes! So, I quickly

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

My Little Soldier Is Down

Monday morning, I realized that Charlotte's cough was getting more serious than before and I decided to feed her the Rhinatiol. One hour later, her body turned warm and that marked the beginning of another virus infection fight. Her fever shot up to 39 degree C most of the time and only came down a little bit after each dose of PCM. From one feed of PCM to another, her fever never subsided entirely. This stayed through the entire night and I stayed up to sponge her all night while waiting for the time for the next PCM feed. Throughout the night, her temperature stayed above 38 degree C. I was just counting the time and couldn't wait to rush to the hospital when morning comes but I knocked out around 8am and Pat took over to continue sponge cool Charlotte. The next thing I knew, she was at 39.2! I checked the clock and it was 8.45am. We quickly get ourselves ready and rush to Dr Sim's clinic.

She is confirmed down with virus infection, with cough and slight throat infection. But her fever had never broke and MIL called around 4.45pm that Charlotte didn't want to take the medicine and her temperature was rising again! Both Pat and I again rushed there and I finally made the call the we need to administer the Volteran suppository. Charlotte put up a struggle but it wasn't as tough as I anticipated. Maybe she understood it when I told her that it will do good for her. It took about 1 hour to take effect and finally I saw precious sweat drops appearing on Charlotte's neck and forehead.

Her fever broke since then. I took her temperature again this morning while she was still asleep (I thought) and the reading showed 36.2. Charlotte then opened her eyes and said "mommy, no tee tee tee (the beeps from the digital thermometer when hit 37.5), hot hot go away d!" See how alert she was even when she is not well? Yes, no more fever but we still need to take care of that cough and get rid those phlegm.

I stayed up 2 nights with only a short naps in between, you bet I look worse than a zombie right now especially had to get up and get ready for a 7am meeting this morning *sigh!* But all is worth when I over heard Charlotte told Brenda this morning "mommy feed me medicine d! my mommy very good one, you know!"

Get well soon baby!