Countdown to Joash's 6th Birthday

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Countdown to Jayna's 5th Birthday

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Countdown to Jaide's Birthday

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Countdown to Joram's Birthday

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Horror Story

Joram bit my shoulder hard
while I was carrying him.

There are good days and then there are bad days. It's part and parcel of life. However, there are really times when I wish that a big hole would open up underneath and swallow me whole. Today is such a day.

With the morning taken up by bible study fellowship and the husband not coming home for dinner, I did not cook. I thought that I could just eat out with the kids as I had done so before on such occasions. After all, the older ones had to go to the library to borrow books they needed for their school work anyway. 

It all started out pretty normal when I brought them to the food court for their fruits tea break. Jaide refused to "water parade", which was not unusual, so I simply ignored her whining. Joram was unwell and thus augmented his separation anxiety. He started crying loudly when I stood up to go buy the fruits. I took that in my stride too and quickly made my purchase. Things began to go downhill when the eldest started to sob because he soiled his pants! I don't even remember the last time he did such a thing...

We had to hurry through the tea break with three crying children. Joram was so fussy because he couldn't make up his mind what he wanted to eat. Meanwhile, the big brother had tears running down his face as he valiantly finished his bananas while standing on his feet with a pair of stinky poopy pants. Jaide didn't eat anything in the end because she still refused to drink her water. 

I couldn't pander to her any longer. With half the meal left uneaten, I dragged all the kids out with Jaide screaming that she wanted to eat. I sent kid no. 1 alone to the toilet to clean up his own mess as I brought the rest with me to buy new pants and underwear for him. Cranky Joram cried whenever the stroller stopped moving forward. 

After this crisis was averted, I thought that the nightmare was over. Boy was I wrong. 

At the library, Joram pooped and I realised that I ran out of fresh diapers for him! Feeling uncomfortable, the youngest started crying, much to my chagrin. I heard clicking tongues and felt dagger stares at my back as I tried to pacify him to no avail. In the end, I had to bring him out. Jaide came out crying to look for me and screamed for food since she didn't get to eat tea break. Joram wanted to go somewhere else but I couldn't risk leaving the older two kids alone at the library without proper instructions. Joram starting rolling around on the entrance floor in a meltdown and Jaide wailed on top of her voice. I didn't think I could re-enter the library with two crying children to look for the other two. 

Thankfully, my older boy came out to go toilet and I could give him the instructions. However, the eldest had problems understanding my instructions amidst all the crying chaos. It took multiple trips in and out of the library before the older children finally accomplished what I asked them to do and borrowed the books they needed. Joram got so frustrated in the meantime that he scratched Jaide's nose and bit my shoulder hard. The screaming symphony crescendoed. When that was done, I still had to pack home dinner with a screaming toddler trying to wrestle out of the stroller and the rest of the kids insisting on taking library books out to read in a crowded food court because they were bored. 

This episode is only topped by the incident a year and a half ago when Jaide peed in her pants in the middle of dinner at the food court. Jayna unwittingly stepped on her urine, which pooled on the floor, slipped, fell and sat on the puddle of pee. That time, I had a hyperactive kid no. 1 running around like crazy in the crowded food court, a crying little infant scared by the mayhem and the two girls wailing away because they were soaked in urine. I really thank God I had spare clothes for them at hand. I steeled myself against the unfriendly glares of onlookers and changed the girls right there and then because I loathed to trek urine all the way to the toilet at the other end of the big establishment. 

Such are the horror stories only mothers can tell...

Saturday, February 21, 2015

CNY 2015

This CNY is a time of many firsts. 

This is my first time purchasing a complete family outfit. When I stumbled upon the website JumpEatCry, I was absolutely delighted. It is not just family tees or mere colour coordination but a whole set of identical pieces of clothing! It's like a dream come true for me who has an obsession with matching things. LOL 

Not only was the price affordable, I was downright pleased that I could find a design which I adore with the right sizes for everyone. The material is surprisingly comfortable and the kids love wearing it. We wore the outfit on the second day of CNY.

The kids

The boys

The girls

Since the older children were mature enough to help me with putting up the Christmas tree, I decided to involve them in decorating the house for CNY. However, I made the mistake of doing it with the younger ones around. What a highly stressful experience! Hahaha... Looks like a child must be at least 5 years old before their "help" becomes welcomed and enjoyable. :P

The older two did the cushions
all by themselves.

This is also the first year I made a personal contribution to the reunion meal. Ever since I got married, I had to adjust to my extended family's custom of going to restaurants for the reunion dinner. My own family did steamboat reunion dinners at home for as long as I could remember. 

This time, my in-laws decided to make it a private affair, which I think was pretty awesome because it gave a more traditional feel to the event. I tried cooking abalone, probably the most expensive dish I ever made! I also experimented with using plum sauce instead of the usual rice vinegar for the sweet and sour pork. I'm glad to say that the dishes turned out pretty well. (Except that I realised I cannot use the microwave to reheat abalone cos they'd turn rubbery.) The kids loved the sambal chicken so much that they ate more than half of what I prepared. There were more than 2 dozen wings in all! Strange that my children are so good at taking spicy food without any encouragement from us adults. They are true blue Singaporeans! 

Abalone with chinese spinach

Grilled sambal mid-wing chicken

Steamed batang fish

Sweet and sour pork
(I separated the sauce and the
fried meat to prevent sogginess)

My mother-in-law gave the children quite a few pieces of new CNY clothes all of a sudden this year. Combined with the ones we already have, I actually have enough traditional costumes for them to wear a different one each day! They are really spoiled for choice. I didn't have to "recycle" the clothes for the kids at all for this year. *beam*

CNY visitation is truly exhausting and tricky with young children. Joram especially had it the hardest since he is such an introvert. He takes time to adjust to new places and people. It didn't help that whenever he started getting used to a relative's home, it was time to leave for the next visitation. He also couldn't nap well outside. Today, he could finally sleep on his own bed during his nap for the first time in four days. He actually squealed in delight before leaping onto his mattress and napped for 4 long hours! Poor boy... He must have been so tired not being able to sleep properly on the go this week.

But with the kids getting more independent and the food allergies of my daughters becoming increasingly under control, I can foresee better years to come. Thank God we survived!