Friday, November 21, 2014

6 must do activities this holiday season

The holiday season has arrived!! Here are 6 awesome activities to keep the kids occupied.

Disney Winter Wonderland Christmas @ Changi Airport

Changi Airport celebrates Christmas this year with the company of Mickey Mouse and Friends
Photos: Changi Airport

Ok. We expect this to be super popular this holiday, and based on what we've heard, the first weekend of its opening has been crowded. And I mean CROWDED!! Think castle inspired by Disney's Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty (inside an airport!) and a Mickey Mouse Club House Bouncy Playground that looks set to attract all Disney fans young and old. The biggest attraction for kids must be the Playground, which allows them to cruise down a three-metre high slide, bounce off sticky Velcro walls and leap into the ball pit. There are also multi-sensory shows and special performances on certain dates. Because it's expected to be a squeeze, it's better to go on weekdays or weekend mornings. You at be able to get a better shot of the castle too. Otherwise, be prepared to be photo bombed.

Date: now till 5 Jan 2015
Multi-sensory show time on weekdays: 5pm, 6pm, 7pm, 8pm and 9pm.
Multi-sensory show time on weekends, Public Holidays and Eve of Public Holidays: 1pm, 3pm, 5pm, 6pm, 7pm, 8pm and 9pm.
Playground opening hours: Opens daily from 12pm to 10pm. To enter the playground, simply present any same-day receipt with a minimum spend of $30. Every $30 spend allows a single entry.
Mickey and Minnie Mouse meet-and-greet sessions: 19, 20 and 21 December at 1pm, 2.30pm, 4pm, 5.30pm and 7pm at Terminal 3 Departure Hall, beside Check-in Row 11.
Stage performances: Weekends from 6.30pm to 7pm at Terminal 3 Departure Hall, beside Check-in Row 11.

Character shows and meet & greet @ shopping malls
What's Christmas without shopping mall hopping to catch stage performances of favourite characters? Here are two of our favourites.

CBeebies Live! Countdown to Christmas @ Plaza Singapura

CBeebies Poster page 001
Say hello to Teletubbies and Super Numtum, as they sing and dance and keep kids entertained. The singing ZingZillas will be strutting around the mall to meet and greet shoppers. Everyone’s favourite Mister Maker will also be making special appearances via a special TV link.

Character shows
Date: now till 7 Dec 2014
Venue: Main Atrium Level 1
Time: Mon to Fri (no show on Tue) 1pm & 7pm; Sat & Sun 1pm, 4pm & 7pm
Spend min. $30 to redeem a photo pass with your favourite Teletubbies or Super Numtum after the show!
Meet & Greet Zing Zillas on 27 to 30 Nov and 6 & 7 Dec

Art & craft workshops
Date: 10 Dec to 21 Dec 2014
Venue: Main Atrium, Level 1
Time: 12pm, 2pm, 4pm & 6pm (daily) (Additional workshop on Sat & Sun @ 8pm)
Spend min. $60 in a single receipt to redeem a pass to the workshop!

Mr Men and Little Miss @ OneKM

Mr Men Little Miss
New mall OneKM near Paya Lebar brings in Mr Men and Little Miss characters Mr. Strong, Little Miss Sunshine, Mr. Bump, Little Miss Hug and Little Miss Princess for the holiday season. The mall’s atrium will also be decorated as Dillydale Town, where kids can engage in activities such as sand art, wire craft, shrink art key chains and princess dress up. It's the latest mall in town, so all the more to visit!

Mr Men Little Miss Meet and Greet
Date: 11 Dec - 21 Dec 2014
Time: Weekdays 2pm, 7pm; Weekends 1pm, 3pm and 7pm
(No Meet & Greet on Wednesday)

Mr. Men and Little Miss Dillydale Town
Date: 11 Dec - 25 Dec 2014
Time: Weekdays 12pm to 8pm, Weekends 11am to 8pm
(No activities between 4pm – 5pm)
To qualify, simply spend a minimum of $80 to redeem a Game Pass.

Christmas Wonderland @ Gardens by the Bay

Yuletide in the Flower Dome

Yuletide in the Flower Dome
Photo: Gardens by the Bay

Christmas in a greenhouse? Oh yes! Walking through the scenic Flower Dome, taking in the sights of the beautiful flora, can be quite a therapeutic experience. This season, it becomes a winter experience too, as the Flower Dome transforms into a red and white floral winter village wonderland. Bring along warm clothes, because the temperature will be cool as well to match the sights. Fans of Miffy can also catch her in action over three weekends. Kids can also create Christmas cards for loved ones, inspired by the Italian Luminarie light sculptures, and by the unique, intricate patterns of snowflakes.

Date: now till 6 Jan 2015
Time: 9am to 9pm
Price: S$12 (Adult), S$8 (Child), S$8 (Senior) (One conservatory)

Miffy Meet-and-Greet
Date: 22-23 Nov (12pm, 1:35pm, 2:40pm, 3:45pm, 5pm), 29-30 Nov & 13-14 Dec (10:30am, 12pm, 2pm, 3:30pm, 5pm)
Venue: Flower Dome

Christmas Paper Craft: Stencils of Luminaries
Date: 20 - 21 Dec 2014
Time: 2pm - 4pm

Yuletide in the Flower Dome Night
Photo: Gardens by the Bay

Italian Luminarie
Over 30 intricate light sculptures will make their debut showcase to create a breathtaking evening garden scene. Handmade by skilled Italian craftsmen, the magnificent luminaries are made of white wood frames from the south of Italy and illuminated with lights of a myriad of colours. The Italian Luminarie also includes the Casa Armonica and Spalliera. The Casa Armonica is a beautifully lit mini capola measuring 7.5m wide and is 9m high. The gazebo will host performances such as Verses by the Garden Lights by Act 3 Drama Academy. The Spalliera is the largest masterpiece, at 31 m wide and 17m high – that’s approximately 5 storeys! It will also host Blizzard Time three times a day, weather permitting.

Date: 29 Nov - 1 Jan 2015
Time: 7pm - 12:00am
Venue: Supertree Grove
For more information, visit the Gardens by the Bay website.

Merry Fishmas @ S.E.A Aquarium

S E A Aquarium  Have a Merry Fishmas and meet Scuba Santa and his elf 2
Photos: S.E.A Aquarium

Santa can swim? Only at S.E.A Aquarium! You have to see it to believe it. Santa appears up to three times daily to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, and is sure to make any kid grin with glee, on top of seeing all the merry marine life there. There are also fun-filled Christmas themed activities, such as an adventure trail for children. While being part of the magical marine kingdom, do be considerate and take care of the marine life, such as switching off your flashlight when taking photos of those that are sensitive to light.

Date: now till 4 Jan 2015
Time:10am – 7pm
Price: S$38 (Adult), S$28 (Child), S$28 (Senior)
For more information, visit the S.E.A Aquarium website.

Holiday art classes @ Heart Studio

IMG 269268306814206

There are many holiday classes to choose from. In my opinion, the ones at Heart Studio is one of the better ones that I've sent EV on. This holiday, their signature holiday programme is back again, for kids aged 3 to 4, 5 to 6 and 7 onwards. Each programme is specially catered for each age group, and is designed to develop specific skills. For example, the programme for kids 3 to 4 focuses on drawing subjects such as bunnies, caterpillars, spaceships and Olaf using basic shapes. The programme for kids 5 to 6 focuses on colour blending and using different mediums, while that for kids 7 onwards focuses on different painting techniques such as dabbing and creating 3D effects. Besides these well thought out classes, what's more important is the teachers, they really do teach art with a heart, and are able to connect with the kids really well. Read our past reviews here.

Date: 8 Dec till 19 Dec 2014
Price: S$75 per class
For more information, visit the Heart Studio website or call (65) 6554 7563.

Taiko drum classes @ Hibikiya

IMG 0046
Photo: Hibikiya

Now this is something different that the whole family can do together for great bonding! Learn to play the Taiko drums, which are Japanese percussion instruments commonly played at Japanese festivals and celebrations. As Taiko is best performed in a group, families can participate in a three-hour course to learn to play the drums together in unison. Combining vigorous movements with loud choruses of enthusiasm, Taiko drum-beating is not only great for bonding, but also a great workout. If the Taiko drum bug bites, then the family can even take weekly lessons with founder and instructor Namiko Sakai at Hibikiya, which is Singapore's only Japanese music studio.

Date: Arranged upon enquiry
Time: 3-hours for a family bonding course
Venue: 63 Jalan Pemimpin, #01-02 Pemimpin Industrial Building
Price: Available upon enquiry
For more information, visit the Hibikiya website or email enquiry@hibikiya.com.sg.

Happy holidays!!!

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

5 ways to parent from the bed

If you are down and out, or like me, rather immobile and stuck on the bed most of the time, with no ability to sit on the floor, or move it move it with the kids, what can you do to recuperate while still spending time with the kids?

Read, read and read even more
Yes, lots. Sometimes even the same books over and over again.

Parent bed 4

Play games
Play board games, educational games, finger games, word games, whatever. The bed becomes the impromptu play pen. And it can get quite squeezy (and messy) with kids wanting to play different games at the same time.

Parent bed 1

Parent bed 3

Parent bed 2

Sing songs
Sing their favourite songs, change lyrics, make up silly songs, introduce them your favourite songs. Having the actual song play in the background can add to the mood.

Sit back, snuggle and watch TV
Sit side by side with your arms around the kids and become TV addicts. This could be the closest you can get to the kids while your body recuperates.

Hold hands while doing the above activities
It's a physical way of showing them your love, that though you are down and out, your love for them is unconditional.

Believe me, I'd rather dance around the living room or go on outdoor adventures with EV and AA. But until I can do so, these five ways will have to do.

I hope that this will give you some ideas whenever you are down and out. If you have other ideas, please do share.

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Feeling helpless when parenting

Have you ever felt helpless when parenting?

I have. Just last night. And the night before.

It's AA. No, it's not a relapse, thank God.

He's having the feared fever and cough with lots of phlegm. Last two nights, while sleeping, he coughed so hard he puked. Phlegm, milk and all. He cried, obviously, and was probably frightened by the experience for a while. DaddySay and the helper helped him clean up and DaddySay comforted him. And he went back to sleep after an hour or so.

So why helpless? Usually, when he falls sick, I'm his main caretaker at night. I would hold him, comfort him and make sure he gets his medication on time.

Last two nights when he puked, I could only watch helplessly from my bed because of my injured leg. I couldn't rush down to his bed to hug him, or hold him and tell him that everything's alright. Mummy is here. The most I could do is hold his hand as he called for me.

Yes, I hate the fact that my injury has prevented me from snuggling with my darling boy like before. Or holding him tight to reassure him when he's frightened or sick. It has prevented me from doing a lot of things.

I know that I will be able to in a few months' time. I must. I will.

Darling, give me a few months. I just hope he still remembers after these precious lost months.

In the meantime, I must find the strength to get well and walk again and do activities like before.. I must keep the faith. Don't give in.

Have Faith
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Friday, November 14, 2014

What your kid's toothbrush is telling you + Electric toothbrushes are only for adults… NOT!!

{Oral-B Feature}

Brushing teeth is an important part of life, even when one is one or ninety nine. The habit of teeth brushing has to start young, but it's not just about the act of it. The toothbrush is extremely important too.

So you've bought the latest toothbrush for your kid, based on his or her favourite character. Is it the right one? What exactly is your kids' toothbrush telling you? What should you be looking out for?

If your kid's toothbrush has an age appropriate brush head
Make sure that the toothbrush is age appropriate for your kids, with a small brush head. This will help get to the hard-to-reach places of their small mouths.

If your kid's toothbrush has soft bristles
Bristles need to be soft to be gentle on tiny teeth and gums.

If your kid's toothbrush has a comfortable and easy-to-hold handle
Make sure that the toothbrush features a non-slip grip which makes it easier for tiny hands to use even when the toothbrush is wet.

If your kid's toothbrush looks worn out after only a few uses
Check your kid's brushing skills. He or she may be brushing too hard, hurting the tender teeth and gum

If your kid's toothbrush has worn out bristles
It's time to replace it. Otherwise, every three months is the recommended period. To help you remember, write the date of first use on the brush.

Oral B 1

These tips have guided me in choosing a suitable toothbrush for EV and AA and I hope it helps you too. Since they both turned two, I have selected the same toothbrush brand for the both of them - Oral-B Stages. Perhaps it's because I myself use Oral-B, perhaps I was attracted by the cute Pooh characters on the handles. Whatever it was, Oral-B Stages has served both my kids really well, and is one of the reasons why they look forward to brushing each day.

Oral B 2

They both started out with the Oral-B Stages 2 toothbrush for kids aged 2-4 years old. The brush head is not only small, but narrow and cushioned as well, suitable for small mouths with baby teeth that are still growing, protecting their teeth and gums. I like that the bristles are longer at the tip, so cleaning back teeth is easier. Oral-B calls this the Power Tip™ bristles. I also like the gripped handle, which is a rubberized grip with honey pots and bees engraved on it. The front of the handle feature different Disney characters, such as Pooh and Tigger. Yes, I always got these as, well, they are my favourite characters too.

Oral B 3

Electric toothbrushes are only for adults?
Not any more! Now kids aged five and above can enjoy it too. Like an adult's electric toothbrush, the Oral-B Stages Power Toothbrush brings battery power to the habit of tooth brushing. It has a Rotating Powerhead™ that surrounds and cleans each tooth individually as one moves the toothbrush around the mouth. The raised centre bristles are positioned to clean teeth surfaces, while the tips are longer in order to get in between teeth. Bristles are soft too, so while this electric toothbrush is powerful on cleaning, it is gentle on teeth.

Like the normal toothbrushes, the Oral-B Stages Power Toothbrush features Disney characters as well. As you can see, the one we got is Disney Princess. Just right because EV is currently now in a 'princess' stage, in addition to cars and trains and bats and spiders and turtles.

With just a few months to go before she reaches five, she isn't too far from having fun brushing with Oral-B's new electric toothbrush for kids.

Oral B 4

Disclaimer:  We were provided with Oral-B products and shopping vouchers for the purpose of this feature. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions and images are my own.


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