Friday, November 30, 2007

Need More Money

Okay, so here is another avenue to make money through your blog. Everybody say hi to bloggerwave. Truthfully, I don't do a whole lot of paid postings. Two reasons for that:

1. Want to maintain my niche topic. Don't like the idea of a 'chapalang' site.
2. Burn to many braincells thinking how to make a paid posting interesting.

BUT, I admit, it is nice to receive 'deposits' into my paypal account once in a while. How much you wanna earn depends on how much you are willing to put in. Me, I'm happy earning some chicken feed at the moment. What with my girl starting school next year, I'm glad I have a little money to draw out to buy all her school stuff. Thank you my little blog.

So, hopefully signing up with Bloggerwave can help grow my savings a little further. Then my kiddies can have a slightly fatter 'ang pow' for Chinese New Year next year.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Giving Handphone to Children

Thanks to all the wonderful mothers out there that have shared their tips and answered my questions on what to do with a child starting Std1. I will put the ideas to the test and update everyone on what happens next year. I will also compile a "starting school" shopping list when I'm done with mine.

Vickylow mentioned in her comment to teach our children to use the public phone in case they need to call home. Great idea! However, this got me thinking that our kids are so exposed to handphones (that means mobile phones my western friends), public phone is like a "what's that mom?" sort of thing. Of course I'm not saying give your young child a handphone instead. But eventually you will give them one right? Just wondering, what is an appropriate age to give your child a handphone?

When will you (or did you) give your child one?

p.s. I know I owe many people tags like "hutang keliling pinggang". I plan to dedicate the next 1 week to doing the tags okay? Bear with me.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Starting School Tip

Actually, I'm not writing a tip but asking for tips. K will be Std. 1 next year and I was wondering what you parents out there do about pocket money? How much do you give your child? I've been trying to teach K how to handle (count and stuff) money but she hasn't really shown me that she can handle money. Do I just give her anyway and let her learn through experience?

Also, do you pack food for them or do you let them eat canteen food? If you pack food, what sort of food do you pack everyday?

And regarding uniform, she will be in a school that has 99.9% Malay students. Think I should get all baju kurung for her? This is so weird coz' during my school days, hardly non-Malay wear baju kurung uniform. But now it's like a norm.

Anything else I need to know about starting Std.1?????

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Baby Milestone: 10 Months

My big baby at 10 months is just a busy, busy bee. When he is awake, he walks and walks all over the house. Below is a list of things he does:
  • Pulls down the books from the shelf. Like a magnet he is attracted to books. I guess I should be happy. But that happiness fizzles out when I have to tidy up the hurricane struck room. Anyway, his favourite are lift-the-flaps books.
  • Open cupboards and drawers. He knows where daddy keeps his wallet.
  • Loves the kitchen. Always trying to open my rice container. I let him feel the rice once and now he keeps going back for more. Also always reaching for the fridge magnets.
  • As good as a vacuum cleaner. He can spot even the smallest of things on the floor.
  • Tries to jump on the trampoline.
  • On a constant lookout for the tv remote control.
  • Ransack the koko and jie-jie's things in the playroom.
  • Tries to 'kacau' his siblings when they are playing computer. He also wants to bang on the keyboard and play with the mouse.
  • If the staircase gate is open, he will open-close, open-close it. Sometimes, he will climb to he first step, sit there and play with the gate. If the gate is closed, he will sometimes try to climb it.

He also is beginning to understand instructions. We've asked him a few times now to go pick up his handkerchief that's lying on the floor and give it to us. He actually did it.

Although a handful at times, he will melt your heart by giving you his cheeky smile. Anyway, I'm glad he takes a nap in the afternoon. And jie-jie has issued a warning at the bookshelf.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Why You Should Read With Your Child

A couple of nights ago, I read The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen to my children. As usual, I would pose a few questions here and there along the way.

If you remember the story, the Little Mermaid had to wait until she was fifteen before she was allowed to swim to the surface. When she finally had the chance to see the world above, she saw a ship with a prince on board. In a storm the prince was thrown overboard and the Little Mermaid ended up saving him. When the Little Mermaid returned home, her sisters asked what she had seen. But the Little Mermaid refused to tell them.

Why didn't she want to tell them? I mean, wow, such an adventure. Won't you be excited to share the experience?
Because if she tells them, then they will ALL want to marry the prince. But she wants to marry the prince herself.

The story continues...
Little Mermaid needs the Prince to marry her or she will become sea foam. That's her deal with the sea witch. The night the Prince marries another girl, the Little Mermaid's sisters tells her she needs to stab the prince in the heart. If she does that, she can become a mermaid again and return home. That's their deal with the sea witch.

Will you do it? Would you kill the man you love? If you were the Little Mermaid, what would you do?
Yes. I will kill him. Who ask him to marry someone else!

You know the saying "Hell has no fury like a woman's scorn?" Looks like its the same for little girls. So young yet already exist the traits of possessiveness, jealousy and revenge. Which boy want to tackle my DD better becareful ya. And which girl want to steal her boyfriend away also better watch out. Don't say I didn't give warning.

Mama's Bag Of Tricks:
Read with your children often. It's a great way to bond. Also a tool to get into their heads to see how and what they think.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Pre-Potty Training

You know how some mothers claim they managed to potty train their children since x-months old? I can never agree that you can potty train a 'baby'. A toddler yes, but not a baby. To me, a child is potty/toilet trained when they can:

1. Go to the potty themselves (Yes, that means walking to the potty and plopping themselves on it).
2. Pulling down their own pants (Well... sometimes they need help).
3. Going poo or pee in the potty.

HOWEVER, I do believe you can PRE-POTTY train a baby. My definition of pre-potty training includes:

1. Getting babies to poo at around the same time everyday.
2. Baby poos or pees when you hold them over the potty.

The reason why I am writing about pre-potty training is because I managed to get babyD to poo into the toilet bowl. For the past few weeks, I would try to catch him doing his "big business." You know how they always put on a "poo-poo" face when trying to do it? Yea, so whenever he gives that signal, I rush him to the toilet. AND amazingly, he would poo into the toilet (if he hadn't already finished doing it into his diaper).

My main motivation for doing this is not so I can potty train him early. Actually, I do this because I am lazy to wash his dirty diapers (I'm using the modern cloth diapers - BumGenius to be exact).

Anyway, back to the pre-potty story. I've read and heard stories about how children have problem sitting on the potty or toilet bowl when it comes time to potty train. They resist and seem to have an aversion towards it. I wondered how come babyD didn't have a problem sitting on the toilet? Then it occurred to me, that maybe, it was because I had often put him on the toilet bowl to wash poo off his butt. So now, he has learned to associate poo-toilet bowl.

Anyway, only a mother feels excited talking about poo in the toilet bowl :) Well, just thought I'd share this little pre-potty trick with you.

Don't wait until you want to potty train before getting your child to sit on the potty/toilet. When baby have learned how to sit, you can start putting baby on the toilet (with the help of those child toilet-aid thingys). Do it when you want to clean his bottom. Hopefully baby will soon associated poo - toilet and you will have a hassle free time when actually potty training later.

Other past potty training posts:
1. Can potty training be fun?
2. Potty training problems? Try this.
3. The many uses of a kitchen timer.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Getting Baby To Walk Early

Just 2 weeks ago he was barely walking. Now look at him go. Such a steady fella at 10 months old.

All my 3 children started walking early. My eldest girl started walking about 9 months. KokoD started walking around 10 1/2 months. This baby started about 9 1/2 months.

I read somewhere that babies that are carried a lot, like in a sling, tend to start walking early. It seems when you carry baby around in a sling, it helps to develop their sense of balance (or something like that). Sorry, can't seem to find that particular reference.

Well, I carried my babies A LOT. BabyD is the only one whose butt got to sit in a stroller. And that was only around the house coz' he liked to see me as I did my housework. For example, I would be hanging out the clothes and he would be sitting in the stroller enjoying the fresh air. But compared to stroller time, he got more sling time. I never took the stroller when we left the house to go out.

Anyway, just wondering if sling babies really do start walking early. Any other sling babies out there?

Friday, November 02, 2007

Don't Whine, Solve The Problem

See the cup that holds my kids' toothbrushes? See the water in the cup? Well, I asked my son why the cup was filled with water (thinking it was another of his playful acts) and this was his answer:

"So the ants can't get to my toothbrush."

So clever. Don't need mommy to teach you. Fantastic thinking. That's called using your head. (And whatever other praises I can think of).

I've always tried to drill into my children's head that complaining, crying and whining about a problem does not do us any good. More important is to find a solution.

I admit that I am quite a lazy mother. I don't like to do everything for my children. My reaction to their problems is usually "figure it out yourself first." If they can' t figure it out, I will suggest a solution. If they still can't solve it, then only I step in.

For example:
My son needs to turn on the bathroom light but he is too short to reach the switch. Mommy and jie-jie are fed up of playing errand girls. So KokoD has figure out his problem. He climbs up his stack of little chairs but still cannot reach. Mommy says use a ruler or stick or something. He gets a ruler and whala, the light is turned on. Problem solved!

Even when my children bombard me with 101 curiosity questions, my first answer is "what do you think is the answer?" Sometimes they don't like my answer but it gets the message through that I want them to think about it first. Usually, their answers are more imaginative than mine. It may not be correct, but that doesn't matter. Eventually we get to the correct answers. In the meantime, I let their brain do some exercise first.

Cultivating problem solving skills are crucial to a child's education. If we want our children to be independant, I believe this is the key. Plus, when children see they can overcome problems on their own, their confidence increases.

Mamas Bag Of Tricks:
  • Don't be too quick to jump in and fix things for your children. Tell them to think about it first and give you a solution.
  • Tell your children that you have confidence in their abilities.
  • Work through problems together, whether it be yours or theirs. Show that you value their input. You could say "what do you think we should do?"