Monday, July 20, 2009

My Baby Is Now 6 Years Old

I'm trying to come up with something more original to say then "It's hard to believe..." but I have no other words. It's just that simple -- it's hard to believe my baby is already 6 years old. Lately Elly has been telling me she wants me to have another baby so that she won't be the youngest in the family. She doesn't like to be the "baby." But she is. She'll always be, no matter how old she gets. But, of course, that's not an original statement either, I know. I suppose a commonly experienced motherly emotion calls for a common phrase to express it.

About 10 days ago Elly turned 6 years old. I took Elly and GG to the water park "Wild Wild Wet" to celebrate (just us girls). We went on all the rides/attractions Elly was big enough for. We had a blast floating down the "Shiok River," riding the waves in the "Tsunami," playing on the playground and slides, and "white water rafting" on the Ular-Lah. The next day, we headed back for more with Daddy this time for Elly's birthday party. Because many of Elly's friends are away for the summer, the group of kids was small. Even so, we had a nice group of kids and parents and a great time celebrating Elly's special day. She had cupcakes with cocktail umbrellas on top (Elly's idea for an added decorational touch).

All these photos are from my friend, Jane. Thanks for being our photographer, Jane!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Just her luck!

Have you ever been locked inside the stall of a restroom?

It's never once happened to me. You? Maybe only once or twice in a lifetime, right?

Ask GG how many times it's happened to her. Nevermind. You don't need to ask her. I'll save you the trouble and just tell you.

GG has been locked/stuck inside a toilet stall 4 times. Yes, 4! And it has all been within the last 3 1/2 months.

It happened again today (the fourth time). I couldn't help laughing (pretty hard) when I realized what was taking her so long in the toilet. I did have the common sense, though, to leave earshot before laughing.

Today was the first time GG had company. Elly was in the stall with her. I hope that doesn't mean GG's luck will rub off on Elly.

This wouldn't be such a big deal except that, for some reason, the doors to the stalls in most of the restrooms in Singapore are made so there is only about a 4 inch clearance from the door to the floor. There is no way to slip in/out under the stall door, even if you are really skinny. The only thing to do is wait for someone to come rescue you. GG's rescue has come in the form of:

1. 2 maintenance men working together with a hammer and a screwdriver (used as a wedge); this was after a string of about 5 other people tried to get the door to open

2. a key to the bathroom that had to be obtained from the management office

3. a storekeeper's skillful use of her finger to turn the lock from the outside (it looked like it wasn't the first time she'd done that)


4. a 20-cent coin used to turn the lock from the outside

The good news is... with each "imprisonment" GG faces, the method of "release" is becoming easier and easier.

I'm wondering if any of you can beat the record for being locked in a restroom 4 times in 3 1/2 months?

Monday, July 13, 2009

Summer Vacation... It's Not Just for Kids

I hear parents complain about summer vacation. They get sick of the kids being around. They want some peace and quiet. They look forward to the day that school starts up again and they no longer have to listen to the chorus of "I'm bored" or "Can't we do something fun today?"

I can relate to a certain extent but, to be honest, I am loving summer vacation with the kids. I, actually, may be enjoying it more than they are. Sure, there are times I'd rather have more time to myself and less noise and mess to deal with. Like today when we I had to take them grocery shopping with me and the checker told me I looked "really stressed." (Yeah, I don't enjoy grocery shopping with my kids at ALL!) However, there are some definite advantages to being on break from school.

I think top on my list of reasons to love summer vacation is probably sleeping in. I'll probably regret it come August 11 (first day of school) but we've been sleeping in until between 8-9 AM most mornings. I haven't decided if we'll keep this up as long as possible or if I'll start easing us into an earlier morning schedule about 2 weeks before school starts. The thought of waking up early unnecessarily makes me sad (and tired) but, then again, the thought of dealing with kids that won't/can't wake up on time to catch the school bus isn't too attractive either.

Another perk to summer vacation is the freedom to "fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants." I don't like the feeling of being too scheduled. I like to have loose plans and vague ideas of what's going to happen during a day/week. Waking up in the morning to a variety of options for the day's activities is fun for me. Yes, we still have commitments throughout the week but the majority of our time is spent relaxing and doing what we feel like doing. I'm enjoying the playdates with friends, spontaneous outings, and hours spent beside the pool watching the girls play together. Most the kids in the condo are in school right now (local schools follow a different holiday schedule) and most the girls' friends from international school are either out of Singapore for the summer or not close enough to meet up with every day. That means the girls mostly just swim and play with each other most days.

This brings up something else I love about summer (or at least, our experience for this summer). GG and Elly have been getting along so much better. They still disagree and bicker (and, yes, even fight) but spending more time together has made them closer. I'm really enjoying watching them play together so well.

Since this post is rather long already, I'll limit myself to one more reason why I love summer vacation. There has been a sharp decrease in the cost of medical care. I happened to walk by the kids' doctor's office today (it's in the same shopping center as Grace's gymnastics class, different level) and it hit me... we haven't been to the doctor since before school was out. It's probably been almost 2 months since we've been to the doctor. I'll just say this - having contact with fewer children has sure helped on the health-front.

To wrap it up, I just want to mention how thankful I am to be in a position where I can enjoy summer vacation. I know many people don't have it so easy and I recognize that. I feel incredibly blessed!!

Now tell me... what do you love (or hate) about summer vacation, assuming you experience it in some way, shape, or form?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

See what happens????

I warned you this may happen. Well, kind of. Maybe I didn't say it in so many words but you could have read between the lines and figured this might happen.

Remember this post? -- My New Year's Resolutions

I made a new year's resolution to blog more. Since then, it was a steady and quick decline into a world of complete blog silence. It's been almost 4 months since I've blogged anything at all. It's been longer if you don't count the last couple posts as *real posts,* which I don't.

Now you see why I almost never make new year's resolutions? It's a nearly surefire plan for failure. I have about as much resolve as a ..............
uh...... hmmm.....
Well, I don't know what that would be. Any suggestions?

Don't be too harsh. After all, I managed to squeak out this post, didn't I? I'll refrain from any predictions about future success or failure, though, and just stick with my good intentions for now.