Tuesday, August 28, 2007


Okay, here is my Happy Birthday Karina scrap. Sorry dear girl, Mommy is a few days late. The birthday was really simple. My birthday tradition for my children is I take them to the store and give them RM5 to spend on whatever they like, plus we cook whatever they request. Oh, I also promise a birthday outing but have to put that on hold for a while. As usual, money will be spent on junk food. Food request this time was Roast Chicken and Mash Potatoes.

So, what is a 6 year old Karina like?
  • She is good at making Baby D laugh. Loves to carry him and will hug and kiss him goodnight every night.
  • Good at reading.
  • Is very helpful IF she wants to be
  • She is very tall (that's what people say) -- 4 ft
  • Barbie fan
  • Wants to be a police when she grows up (in case her postman brother turns bad, she can put him in jail. Aiyoh!)
  • Loves to cycle and have lots of energy to spend outdoors.
  • Talks and scolds like her mother. Sometimes you'd think she was the mother. Hahaha.
Mamas tip:
If you want to make your own birthday cake and frost it, here is an icing recipe that worked for me:

3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
2 tbs milk

I'm no pro at cake decoration like Mama Min, but my children are also easy to please. This time, I chose an orange color icing which actually makes the cake look bright and nice. Got some waffle flowers for easy deco.

For the cake, I bought the Betty Crocker Lemon cake mix. Yes, I'm a cheater :) But I really like the lemon cake mix. This is the second time I've made it. It's really nice and moist. As you can see, I also left the cake in the pan. That serves 2 purpose:
  1. I don't have to ice the sides.
  2. Easy to store the cake after eating.
Okay, that is all for my really amateur, cheapo cake baking-decoration effort.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Chinese Women Don't Like To Breastfeed?

Just want to share with you my little experience of taking baby D to the government clinic for checkup. The area I live in is primarily a Malay area. I am probably the only Chinese woman that takes her baby to this clinic for a checkup. Anyway, this is how the conversation has gone almost every time I'm there (I've been there 4 times already) :

Nurse: What do you feed baby?
Me: Breastmilk
Nurse: You breastfeed? No formula at all? (Sounding very surprised)

Me: No.
Nurse: Normally Chinese women don't like to breastfeed.
Then they will comment on how big, heavy, solid baby D is.

Anyway, I just wanted to know how "real" is this misconception among the public that Chinese women don't l
ike to breastfeed? I was quite surprised to hear this statement because I know many Chinese moms out there who are breastfeeding. Or is our number so small that we are overshadowed by our Malay breastfeeding friends?

If this statement is true , what is it about the Malays that makes them more successful at breastfeeding? Or what is it about Chinese women that makes us less successful?
- culture?
- religion?
- upbringing?
- mind set?
And what about our Indian counterparts?

Do share your thoughts on this. It would be interesting to know if there was a difference in breastfeeding trends among the different races.

(I know breastfeeding week is over. But this fact rings true throughout the year, and for centuries to come.)

Monday, August 20, 2007

Baby Milestones: 7 months

Everyday is a busy day now with baby roaming around the open spaces. He isn't yet crawling on all fours but rather crawls army style. But I'm sure he will 'upgrade' soon. He can pull himself into an 'all fours' position, rocks to and fro before lunging forward.
I call him my little 'octopus' because it seems like he has 8 hands. Plus everything goes into the mouth that is now sprouting 2 tiny but razor sharp teeth.

It is easier now that he can sit steadily. But he is not much of a sitter. He is always trying to pull himself into a standing position.

One thing I find rather amusing and amazing is how he 'gravitates' towards the playroom and to his siblings. When I put him down on the floor, he will crawl to the playroom, push the door open and invite himself in. He looks so contented just being in the room with his siblings making noise and havoc around him. Once in a while he will look my way and give a cheeky smile.

Mama's tip for 'octopus hands' babies:
1. Don't snatch things away from them. It is normal for us to sort of panic when we see them put dirty, inedible things in their mouth or when they grab something to the point of destruction. We yell 'NOOOOOO' and then try to snatch the thing away as quickly as we can. Make a conscious effort to 'nicely' tell baby that you want the thing e.g. "Baby, please give Mommy?" and then gently take it away. I find that when I do this, baby will usually ease up his grip. So if he's grabbed a piece of paper or a book, I am able to take it away without ripping it apart. Plus, baby will grow up not learning to snatch but rather be exposed to good manners. Now, I just have to train my little babysitters (his siblings) not to snatch things away from baby :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

To Quit or To Endure

I was reading about a mother's stressful experience getting her young child to study music. She expressed how her child would not sit still during the lesson, be disruptive or just plainly not listen to what's being taught. Getting the child to practice is another battle.

Reading about her experience I wondered, why not just call it quits in the music lesson? Seems like unnecessary stress to me.

But then I remembered a story related by my friend, on how she 'suffered' in pushing her uninterested, lazy son to learn music... and now her son is happy to have persevered as he makes a tidy sum giving violin lessons. However, she also has another daughter that was pushed to finish her piano lessons, and after finishing her grade 8, she didn't bother to touch the piano anymore.

So what kind of parent are you? Would you push your children to do something they didn't like?

Here are two sides to the argument:

  1. You know it is good for them e.g. the acquisition of knowledge and skill, the discipline etc.... You are the parent and know better. They will thank you in the future. Suffer now but they will reap the benefits later. You want to teach them not to quit halfway, that they must finish what they start.

  2. It is tooo stressful, for you and for them. You are tired of the screaming and the nagging. You wonder if you are doing the right thing by 'forcing' them to do something they don't like. You'd hate it if someone did the same to you. You don't want to create a hatred or aversion to learning. Plus, if they don't enjoy and have no interest in the activity, what are they actually learning?
I was fortunate to have parents that didn't push me to do things I didn't like. I too had taken piano lessons when younger but decided to quit after my grade 5 exam. I can still tinker on the piano. I admit I'm glad to have been given the opportunity to study music. If I was given a second chance, I still will quit at grade 5 :) Hahahahah.

I believe that many times, the decisions we make as parents are guided by the things we had or didn't have. For example, you didn't learn Mandarin when you were younger and regret now that you don't know how to speak the language, even though you are Chinese. Therefore, you make a vow that you will "make" your children learn Mandarin whether they like it or not.

Our past experiences makes us 'wiser' than our children, however it may also be a tool that can do a lot of damage. I'm sure you've heard of parents trying to live their dreams through their children? On one hand you are here to guide them but on the other hand, you also need to give them freedom to live their life.

Anyway, write in and let me know your views on this. Would you or wouldn't you push your child to do something that you think is important, but they think is 'boring', 'waste-of-time', 'uninteresting', 'not-my-cup-of-tea' etc.... When should you endure and when should you quit?

Thursday, August 09, 2007


This little nut of mine is 4 YEARS OLD! Happy Birthday babypoo.
The month of August is birthday month. In a couple of weeks it will be K's birthday. What does this mean? It's time for their Birthday blogs of course.

How do I describe Damus?
  • Always smiling and laughing. You'd think he is in clown training school.
  • Won't stand for nonsense, he will fight back
  • Bandaids are a common sight. Shedding of blood does not deter his spirit - as long as there is a bandaid.
  • Shoes... somehow gets on the wrong feet STILL. I'm beginning to think it's gonna be his trademark.
  • Always ready with his kung fu to battle monsters and bad guys.
  • Still mommy's boy. Always ready for a hug, kiss and cuddles.
Mama's tip for birthdays: Try not to cry as you both age a year older.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Tag Time Again

Time to once more catch up on my tags.

J@n!ce tagged me on 10 random things about MY MUM.
Here it goes:

1. My mom joined a beauty pageant when she was a teenager (I think, not sure how old, or rather young she was), and got third place. That picture is somewhere in the photo album.
2. My mom still plays golf in the mornings and sometimes, line dancing after. Yes, still very active. Not sure if it's polite to tell you her age but here's a hint, she is born in the year of the snake.
3. She used to play badminton for the Tunku Ampuan of Negeri Sembilan team. I remember going with her on a badminton tourney trip to Terengganu. They had chartered a bus and we were suppose to stop to see the turtles at Rantau Panjang but it rained :(
4. My mom is a pro-mahjung player (but she don't like to play the type with jokers). She says she has stopped playing but she's said that many times in this life time. Hahahah. Sure you can stop ah mommy?
5. She don't like western food. She's a "char kway teow-hokkien mee" type of person.
6. She was a primary school teacher. I know she taught English and music. Not sure if she taught any other subjects. I asked her just the other night if she had taught me how to read. She said "no". Apalah Mommy, you are an English teacher but never teach me how to read? Hahahah.
7. She has a D24 durian tree that has been fruiting very nice durians the last few years. All her neighbours and friends benefit from her generosity. Including me lah :)
8. As a baby, she was given away to her aunt as there were a lot of girls already in the family. So her aunt became her mother and her mother became her aunt. Aiyoh, pening kepala when we visit relatives from her side. We are always asking "real relative or not real (as in adopted) relative"?
9. She can play the piano without notes. She taught her ownself how to play and plays by ear.
10. She loves gardening. Her garden is full of flowers.

I tag:
1. Mom2Ashley
2. Mia Bambina
3. Tracy


Next tag is from The New Parent. He wants to know what I'll do with $1000000 (One Million Dollars)?
IFFFFF I had that kind of money, of course I will do the normal of investing to generate more income, invest in my children's future, upgrade the house and car, donate to charity etc....
BUT the one thing I think would be kewl to do is to open a dinosaur themed restaurant with a not-to-be-missed gigantic play area. YEAH! If anybody actually do this ah, better pay me some sort of fees okay. I'm gonna copyright this idea. Come to think of it... I think $1000000 is not enough leh.

I tag:
1. Faye
2. Lyanne
3. KarenYiau
4. Mommy of 2 Angels
5. Hui Sia

Rules of Engagement:
Proposition: If You Have $1,000,000.00…………………………………

1st - Tag 5 bloggers, list down their blog and link to their blog.
2nd - Let the blogger you want to tag know they have been tagged by commenting on their blog.
3rd - Add your own blog link to the list below.

What They Would Do With Their $1 Million:
1. SYH will spend for Family.
2. Miche will give to the needy.
3. Montessorimum will keepsake
4. Healthfreakmommy will keep, invest, spend and give to the needy.
5. The New Parent would use for education and charity.
6. Mamas Bag of Tricks would open a dinosaur themed restaurant

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Song for Wheezing and Coughing Children

My children are coming down with a cold. This song I found called "Cover Your Mouth and turn Your Head" seems very appropriate for the occasion. It's a very cute song that will help your children learn hygiene and manners.

Gift Voucher RM30 To Be Won

Just to let ya'll know that my bookshop is running a contest for this month. It's the Merdeka month plus my kids' birthdays. So the contest is our way of celebrating.
To enter the contest, all you have to do is add a caption to the picture below. Submit your answers as a comment at the contest post at the bookshop's blog.

Let's see if the mommies/daddies imagination is still alive.
Of course the judge of the contest are my kids. They will decide who is the wittiest of the lot.
Contest ends 31 August 2007.

Do spread the word around. Thanks.