Monday, May 15, 2017

Lesson on being responsible

The littlest has a habit of losing things. Ever since he started primary school, I lost count on the number of erasers, pencil covers and colour pencils that went missing mysteriously. I do not wish to count how many but whenever I query him, he would give his favourite one-liner answer "I don't know!". Yah...good try son!

I can't remember how many times I try to threaten to make him pay by deducting his pocket money. He has been given too many chances to repent coz this mama is too soft hearted. The final straw came when he brought back a piece of paper from the school library one fine day. 

Apparently, the school librarian told him that there was an overdue book which he did not return after the loan expired. Panic mode was on and we searched high and low in the house, called all the possible public libraries (which we visited frequently) to check if there were any possibilities I could have dropped it in without my knowledge. In the end, the book remained unfounded. He was told that either he need to pay $xx back to the school or go and buy the same book for compensation. Luckily the school librarian was kind enough to let us know where to buy as a cheaper alternative.

Of course, I was very angry with him for being so irresponsible in taking care of his stuff. To make sure he has learnt his lesson, I demanded him to fork out his own pocket money savings to pay for the book. Otherwise, he would not have any sense of responsibility to look after anything. He was feeling the pinched when he knew he has to pay this much from his savings.

Sometimes, I was asking myself if I was too harsh on him? As his mom, I think this will be a good chance to make him remember his mistake and make sure that he has learnt the valuable lesson on how to take care of other people's property.  


Monday, May 8, 2017

We can't wait for exams to be over!

April was a busy month for the kids. They passed their aikido exams and have promoted to the next level. Sensei had returned them their grading books with grading record updated too. YQ had finished her RAD Grade 3 ballet exam too and the result will be release in June.

Now they are going through their mid-year school examination and they can't wait for everything to be over (including the mother) so that they can take a little break. Yes, we might need a little bit of kit-kat to enjoy that small break :)

Thursday, April 27, 2017

The Love for Swing

The children had fond memories of the swing installed in our 1st home about more than 5 years ago. I remembered they were very sad when I decided not to take down the swing when we were moving to a temporary house to stay. Up till now, they will lament why we want to move in the first place. They still prefer our 1st home because it's more spacious (yes, I don't understand why the new houses are built so much smaller nowadays) and they missed the swing in the house.

Moving forward, we have been staying in this estate for a few years and they hardly go down to play at the playground because the playground facility is built to suit more for young toddlers. They kept telling us how much they missed the old swing and wanted to have something similar in our home now. Since our balcony is way underused, hb decided to transform part of the balcony area into their little "playground" by installing a swing area for them to play and relax. Of course, we took into consideration the safety issue before we decided to install the swing there. Now they are happy and contented to have a nice corner to enjoy their swing and admire the beautiful view from the balcony area.

We also believe that swinging has some benefits in children's growth development.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Masons Home Decor: DIY Terrariums

DIY terrariums have become an increasingly popular trend in recent years. People love terrariums for many reasons. I reckon majority love it because terrariums are so easy to maintain at home (That's right! no need to drown those plants in water nor place them under the blazing hot sun). As for us, we love terrarium simply because we can design accordingly to our own "style" :) 

Thanks to the folks from Masons Home Decor, they sent us a big box of DIY terrariums start up kit. The moment I saw these coloured decorative pebbles, I could not contain my excitement and I was so eager to start the project with my kids. The slightly OCD nature in me was slightly concerned about the mess they were going to make. Luckily for us, there was minimal mess to clear up after that.

The DIY terrarium kit includes all the materials that was required. It includes decorative pebbles, premium terrarium mix, activated charcoal, a water spray, a glass bowl, a set of gardening tools, small potted plants and more cute mini decorative.

These plants were seemed to be calling out to me to give them a mini makeover. The kids were having a hard time choosing which plants they wanted.

I placed two big rubbish bags on the floor so it's easier to clear up after we were done. We opened up packets of decorative pebbles (various colours) and placed them neatly on the floor. Do not fret if you have no prior experience like me, there is a simple step by step instruction for us to follow.

We started pouring pebbles into the glass container and forgot to leave some to decorate the upper layer of the soil *ops!* That was what happened when we were too eager to start without thinking logically.

We pour the pebbles layer by layer into the container.

The children asked me what was "activated charcoal"? Erm...I have to rely on Google to search for an answer. Basically "Bacteria that develops in the humid, closed terrarium can begin to smell. A 1/2-inch layer of activated charcoal under the soil and between an upper layer of sphagnum moss and a lower layer of gravel or pebbles, acts as a filter that pulls toxins and bacteria from the soil and water and deodorizes the terrarium."

Ta-da! Here are our masterpieces! The smaller containers were done by the kids and the biggest was done by yours truly.

We had about 1.5 hours of fun bonding over terrariums building. Would we do that again? You bet!

Now our beautiful creations are sitting nicely together with that picture framed (which can be found on Masons Home Decor website too) on our TV console.

There are more than just DIY terrariums kit available at Masons Home Decor. If you are looking for more interesting home/seasonal decor and party supplies, do check out their website & FB page for more information!

Disclaimer: We were given DIY terrarium kit by Masons Home Decor for review purpose. No monetary was compensated, all opinions are my own.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Eye Level Learning at City Square Mall

I'm the type of MUM who loves to expose my kids to various enrichments, trying out new strategies to enhance their learning journey. When Eye Level approached me to do a review, I decided to send Junior YS try out their Math programme. Since he has just started Primary 1 and I felt there is a need for him to have a solid foundation. After one month of lessons, these are our findings:

About Eye Level:
The Eye Level education originated from Daekyo, one of the world's leading companies in the educational service market - it started from South Korea, and currently they have 1258 learning centres in over 20 countries. Although the specifics in delivering the instructions may differ by country, every Eye Level Learning Centre aims to meet the same goal of nurturing problem solvers, critical thinkers, and life-long learners.

Eye Level begins teaching every child at the level most appropriate for his or her individual knowledge, ability and learning style - designs and tailors enrichment programmes so children can learn and progress steadily at a comfortable pace. Eye Level is unique due to its underlying philosophy, which sees learning challenges from the child's perspective.

How is Eye Level different from others?

Individualised learning pace
Every child will go through a diagnostic test to determine his/her ability and progress level. This is to make sure the child is able to master the fundamentals and has a solid foundation before progressing to a higher level. In return, this will build up the child's confidence level. It's the same principal as learning to crawl before you walk and learning to walk before you run.

Learning duration
The lesson is kept at about 30 to 45 minutes per lesson depending on each individual child. I felt that this timing is just nice for the child who has short attention time span.

Continuous and repetition practices
After each lesson, the child will need to bring home a few booklets for continuous repetitive practices. This is to make sure the child understand the concept as well as train on their speed and accuracy.

Every child is required to log in to register their attendance before the lesson starts. An email notification will be sent to the parent's inbox. Likewise, they are required to log out after the lesson ended.

Every time the children come for lessons, they are required to take out their own practice booklets from their folders (nicely labelled with their names).

The teacher will take turns to go through the topic with each child individually.

Junior YS will bring back the learning material and more exercises each week for continuous practices at home.

He started the Eye Level Math from Level 5 Booklet 14 and now he has progressed to Level 6 Booklet 6 after 4 lessons. He is quite pro-active to finish his homework (without constant nagging from me *surprised*) and I realised that his speed in answering each question is getting faster and faster. Of course, the centre has a reward sticker system for him to paste on the map. Once he has accumulated enough stickers, he can exchange a toy from the centre.

The practice books are very colourful and interesting. Thus, it's quite enticing for Junior YS to complete his work without much complaints. He enjoys his lessons there and told me the teacher is very kind to him. No wonder, he looks forward to his weekly lesson at the centre, haha!

Eye Level Math (suitable for age 4 to 14)
Eye Level Math takes the student through a continuum of study areas covering basic skills, as well as advanced concepts and applications. Each level emphasises critical thinking through reasoning skills that students can apply to everyday life.

BTM – understanding the foundation of mathematics
The Math programme allows students to master basic arithmetic operations and mathematical thinking, while developing greater concentration, self-confidence, and better study habits. It cultivates critical and analytical thinking skills with Basic Thinking Math (BTM) and Critical Thinking Math (CTM):
·         Numbers
·         Arithmetic
·         Measurement (application of arithmetic)
·         Equations
·         Relationships & functions
·         Probability & statistics
·         Variables & equation
·         CTM – develop problem-solving skills
·         Patterns & relationships
·         Spatial sense
·         Problem solving
·         Measurement
·         Reasoning
·         Geometry

Eye Level English (suitable for age 3 to 14)Eye Level English starts at the basic motor skills needed for reading and writing, goes onto the building blocks of grammar and phonics, and then to the more complex concepts that allow the mastery of verbal and written communication. The key language skills to be developed are listening, speaking, reading and writing.

Using a thematic and integrated approach, Eye Level provide students with the confidence in learning English through its systematic language acquisition programme.

Programme Fees  (Each lesson is 30 to 45 minutes.)

Note: 1 month’s deposit is to be utilised when the student decides to quit the programme, and students have to give at least one month notice to the Learning Centre.

Once a Week Lesson
Twice a Week Lesson
Eye Level Math
Eye Level English

Currently, there are 19 centres located in various parts of Singapore. Call them now to find out more about their programmes!

Eye Level Global Events:
In addition to their academic programmes, Eye Level organises global events annually to actively encourage their students to discover their oratory, literary, and mathematical talents. Call and check with their Centre Managers for more information on:
    • Literary Award 

Great news! Eye Level Learning Centre is sponsoring 1 month of complimentary lessons for 5 winners in this giveaway! 
(4 lessons - either Math or English)

To participate in the giveaway, all you have to do is:
2. Like and Share this FB post (make sure it's visible by public)
3. In the FB post's comment section, tag 2 friends and tell me why you wish to win this giveaway?

Giveaway Terms & Conditions:
* Giveaway ends 23 April 2017, Sunday 2359 hours (Singapore time) 
* The winner will be selected on 24 April 2017
* Giveaway promotion not applicable for existing students
*Subject to learning centre's class availability
*Only applicable to City Square Mall Learning Centre
* Open to anyone and everyone living in Singapore
* Incomplete or invalid entries will be automatically disqualified without notice
* Winners will be contacted by Facebook PM
* Unless otherwise stated, or agreed upon, the prize is non-transferable
* All personal details provided in this contest will be kept confidential. Only details of the winners will be shared with Eye Level Learning Centre to facilitate the redeeming of prize
* We reserve the right to amend the terms and conditions without prior notice

Congratulations to these 5 winners:  
Chai Ooy Mei
 Robert Sim
Carol Mei Mei Lim
Brenda Lim
JingRong Loh  
Eye Level Learning Centre
City Square Mall
180 Kitchener Road
Singapore 208539
Tel: 6509 1317

Disclaimer: Eye Level Learning Center sponsored 2 months of Math lessons for review purpose. No monetary was compensated, all opinions are our own.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Cold Storage Kids Run 2017

Cold Storage Kids Run is an annual running event specially organised for kids in Singapore and this will be their 10th year event to promote healthy eating, active living and awesome family fun. This will be our 2nd time to participate in the Cold Storage Kids Run 2017 this year. It's a good opportunity for family bonding and also for our kids to relax a bit after their mid-term examinations.

~Changes for this year run~
This year, the run is going to take place at a different venue from the previous year. Families will be able to enjoy the sun and the sea at Palawan Beach, Sentosa. Post-event activities by the beach will be available for families to participate after the run.

Timing has pushed back to 7.15am so as to allow families to have more preparation time.

Non-Competitive Run:
This year, up to 2 parents are allowed to form a team with a child.

Do check out the details regarding Runners Entitlements for this year.

Discount Code
Do key in the code "MMTREF17" during your registration to get 10% off. The code is valid until 10th April 2017. 

Save the date (28th May 2017) and see you there!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Hougang 21 Seafood

If you have a husband and a son who constantly have crabs cravings on most days then I think it's worth to check out this place. It's YUMMY, FRESH and AFFORDABLE! I think probably it's located within the neighbourhood area and that explains why the price is not that exorbitant.

After we spent a bomb at one of the seafood restaurants located at Punggol Settlements recently, I was determined not to go back there to get "slaughtered" again! I saw there was a promotion in my FB feeds and informed the hub that we should check out the place one day. 

Last weekend, hub brought us to Hougang 21 Seafood. People started queuing outside the shop when we arrived. While waiting patiently for our turn to be served, I noticed most tables ordered crabs. 

I was so excited to order their "3 crabs for $25" but the auntie told me the promotion was finished. I wasn't sure if the promotion was gone for good or just for that day only coz I was too lazy to clarify in detail with her. In the end, we ordered the "2 crabs for $35" deal and we paid $3 extra for the salted egg yolk sauce.

Be prepared to self-service if you want to order drinks. Just go to their drinks cooler and get your own drinks, take your own cups and put your own ice. Overall, it's definitely more worth to come back again for the kind of price we paid here.

Hougang 21 Seafood
212 Hougang Street 21
Singapore 530212

Thursday, March 2, 2017

S.D.S Bakery & Cafe: Bukit Indah branch

Recently, we found another cafe with good food with reasonable price. With the recent dropped in the Malaysia currency exchange rate, more people are going into the neighbouring country to enjoy better food, shopping and leisure purpose. My kids loved the food here and so we came back to SDS again.

Their menu is quite extensive, from local fare to western fare.

We just need to write down our own order and just press the bell once we are done.

This drink was ordered during our 1st visit, I thought it looked kinda of cute. The flavoured ice ball was separated from the soda water and we could just add the soda water according to our preferences.

During our 2nd visit, we ordered the grilled sambal fish with rice.

The kids' favourite! Creamy spaghetti with baked salmon.

My ceasar salad, the only thing which I did not like was the bread crumbs coz tasted slightly "lao hong"
Another baked salmon with potato wedges.

If my pickiest kid loved the food there then it meant that the food was NICE! Oh! I forgot to mention that their range of cakes were yummy too!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Running in the "wild" at Safari Zoo Run 2017

We kickstarted 2017 by taking part in the Safari Zoo Run 2017 at the Singapore Zoological Gardens. Although we were no strangers to the venue but definitely it was our very first time to run within the compound. We took part in the non-competitive 2.5km family run this time and it was a wonderful experience running in the "wild" leisurely and made multiple pit stop to take pictures and enjoyed the scenery. 

Great weather to start the family run which we had been anticipating for.

Firstly, the kids wanted to take a picture with their favourite Ah Meng coz we were #TeamAhMeng

Everyone waited in an orderly manner for their turns to start the run.

Not forgetting to take more pictures along the way.

After a few experiences of taking part in family runs last year, we decided not to bring water bottles this time coz we knew water refreshment will be supplied by the organiser. 

 Needless to mention, everyone was so happy to see the word "finish". We made a dash to the finishing line.

Collected the Singapore Zoo Run 2017 Finisher's Medal design and each of us had one more medal to be added to our collection.

One of the highlights of the run we were looking forward to was to gain free access to the Singapore Zoological Zoo and River Safari after the run. The participants did not have to worry about not having enough time to visit all animals in the zoo because they could go in multiple times using their bibs to gain free access. 

Food was easily available located near the entrance and we went to replenish our energy at the KFC fast food outlet before venturing back to these two places. Here were some pretty awesome pictures I took on that day:

We are so looking forward to the Safari Zoo Run next year and probably by then, my kids will game enough to take part in the competitive run by themselves.

Disclaimer: We were invited to take part in the Safari Zoo Run. No monetary was compensated, all opinions are our own.