Chicky Fellow

Cheeky gal

Clarissa: Daddy, I have a riddle for you …
Me: Ok, what’s the riddle?

Clarissa: Who gives presents to children?
Me: God?
Clarissa: No
Me: Santa Claus?
Clarissa: No
Me: OK … I know. The answer is …. “Me – Daddy!”
Clarissa: NO!
Me: I know the answer is “Me” … You cheater!

Clarissa: No … I didn’t tell you the whole question. The question is “Who gives presents to children … and gobbles them up!!!” All your answers are wrong. Hahahahaha …
Me: @#$%$@^@^@

BTW, Clarissa was born in the year of rooster, i.e. little chicky fellow, and the answer to the riddle is …. Santa Jaws

Clarissa’s Dream House

Hey, this is my first writing.

Clarissa has always been a chatty girl and she is that kind who can talk non-stop during a car journey. Take for instance the 20 minute car ride to her enrichment class yesterday, she was telling me how much she wanted a bungalow and started describing her ideal home. So I told her “Why don’t you write down all these fantastic ideas of yours and then when we have the money, we can really buy a house like that?”. Of course, I was just kidding her. There’s no way we could afford a 5 storey bungalow in Singapore; being an employee. 😉

So I did tell her that it’s almost impossible for us to afford a big house like that and she agreed. Then she followed up and said “Well, we can build the house with lego. At least it’s still our house, right?” Like what I always tell my friends, she is so adorable and is always full of surprises. Yes, we can definitely afford to buy some lego bricks and build a big house (for her).

Below is the scanned copy of her work and we didn’t help her much except for a few words that she couldn’t spell. It’s pretty much her effort, her maiden composition. 😉

My ideal house is a ...

MBS Skating Rink

Skating Rink at Marina Bay Sands

Clarissa started learning rollerblading during the last December school holidays and rollerblading has been her favourite sports since then. She would ask me to roller blade with her (along the canal behind our place) whenever we have some free time, especially during the weekends. Alycia, on the other hand, was not so much a lover of this sport as compared to her sister. Although she had 4 years of head start, she couldn’t really blade very well as Clarissa. In fact, it was only recently that she could blade (properly). It’s pressure from her sister, probably. 😉

Earlier this year, we had two visitors from Australia and we brought them to Marina Bay Sands (the blog entry is here). We showed them how much Singapore has changed and one of the things that caught the attention of the kids was the skating rink in MBS. They had since been nagging at me to bring them to the rink.

Getting used to the surface

The kids soon learned that ice-skating is quite different from rollerblading. The principles are basically the same but because there is less friction on the ice surface, it’s generally more difficult to move. It took the kids a while to get used to the surface and as a disclaimer, I did not skate on the rink personally and these were feedback from my children. Moreover, the rink is not made of ice. Instead, it is made of some synthetic material to mimic the ice surface. It’s not as smooth as ice, but close enough (according to MBS). Personally, I find it closer to wax than ice. But for $6/hour, I wouldn’t complain. 😉

One thing that I like about kids is that they make friends very easily. The boy above, whom I forgot his name, just came over and made friends with my two princesses. He started with some small talks and in no time, the three of them were playing together. Sometimes, I wish I could be like them – To be able to approach somebody and make friends just like that. ;-(

If you were to ask me “Which is more fun? Rollerblading or skating at MBS?”, I would think rollerblading  is better. Everybody seems to be either walking or moving at a very slow pace at the rink. In fact, I didn’t see anybody blading in a very smooth fashion. Nevertheless, the kids enjoyed themselves and said “We will be back!”.

Alycia couldn't brake in time

Clarissa fell and injured herself

Taking a break

We will be back!

2 bottles for $2

We received a call from Clarissa’s form teacher, Ms Tan, today and she informed us that she caught Clarissa doing a transaction with her classmate Rany in school. Since Clarissa is only 6 years old, she doesn’t have any pocket money for school, let alone the $2 that she used to buy the plastic bottles from Rany. We were really surprised as we didn’t know anything about this and for that matter, where did she get the money from? This is something that we want to find out and here’s the full story…

Mommy: Clarissa, Ms Tan called to inform me that you bought something from Rany. Is that true?

Clarissa: Yes, mommy. I bought 2 bottles from her for $2.
*** She started giggling ***

Mommy: What? 2 bottles for $2? What do you want the bottles for?

Clarissa: No …. Actually I wanted her ring but she said she lost it. And so she is selling me the bottles instead.

Mommy: Har? What happened to her ring?

Clarissa: I don’t know. I saw her wearing the ring last Friday and wanted her to give to me. She said cannot and so I said I will buy from her for $2 on Monday.

Mommy: Then how did it become 2 bottles?

Clarissa: Rany said she lost the ring and so she brought 2 bottles instead. I thought about it and  said ok. So I gave her the $2.

Mommy: And where did you get the $2? Why didn’t I know about it?

Clarissa: I have $10, remember? This morning both you and daddy were busy and so I went to my wallet and get the money myself.

*** We did give her $10 during the last Chinese New Year to spend and apparently she didn’t spend all of it. 😉 ***

Mommy: Then where are the bottles that you paid for $2?

Clarissa: Aiya … It’s all because of that busybody Lovell! She told Ms Tan about us and Ms Tan confiscated the bottles and money.

*** Then Clarissa did her trademark rolling eye balls ***

Clarissa loves swimming

Clarissa's Swimming Lesson

Last Sunday was Clarissa’s first swimming lesson and she enjoyed it thoroughly. After the lesson, we had the following conversation.

Clarissa: Daddy, did you take any photos of me?
Me: Oops, I didn’t. I will take the photos next week, ok?
Clarissa: Next week? But it won’t be my first lesson …
*** And she was quite sad ***
Clarissa: Ok. You take next week, but you tell people it’s my first lesson, ok?
*** And she grinned ***

So here are the photos that I took on her 2nd lesson (ahem … 1st lesson). 😉

Warming up

Listening attentively to the instructor

Putting into practice immediately

Lesson 1: Head into water

After overcoming the fear of going underwater, the instructor next taught her some basic strokes such as kicking. At the end of the lesson, Clarissa could swim about one body length without the float and I thought that was quite good.

After an hour of hard work, she was tired and yet happy. I hope that she can keep up the spirit ... 😉

The Playdome at National Museum of Singapore

National Museum of Singapore

The PlayDome is a new creative platform by the National Museum of Singapore (partnered with Playeum, The Play Museum) for children aged 3 and above. It encourages children to express their unique voices through meaningful and fun play activities based on their visual inspirations and experiences drawn from the galleries and objects found in the museum.

This inaugural event was held from 14 May to 26 June 2011, which happened to be the last day of the Mid-Year holidays. Surprisingly, it wasn’t too crowded when we were there at around 11am. I guess most people may have already visited the place and we were probably one of the last few? LOL.

This exploratory space consists of dedicated zones, where children get to play with props, materials and get really hands-on in creating original art works inspired by the collection in the museum’s Living Galleries and its iconic Dome.

First, we went to the “Gardens @ The PlayDome”, which was an open field at the back of the Museum (facing Fort Canning Road). Here, the participants were encouraged to exercise their creativity by drawing on a transparent disc with a pre-drawn arc. Below are 2 photos of my children exercising their creativity … 😉

20_DSC9123 20_DSC9110

Alycia and her creation

Be prepared to dirty your hands

Next, we went to the “Black Box” where the children were introduced to the traditional practices in films, wayang and fashion. Here, the children learned about Singapore’s culture and history. There was also a giant kaleidoscope where my kids had a lot of fun creating beautiful patterns with props such as clothes, sharps and even their own bodies.

At the Wayang Play Stage, the children got to colour the wayang face masks. They were supposed to understand the meanings of the colors, shapes and lines on the wayang faces. But I guess they were so excited that they just wanted to have fun and ignored all these painting guidelines. Well, kids are kids, right?

The kids had a go at the traditional puppet show

Finally before we left the Black Box, the children got to play and interact with historical footage of how our ancestors spent their childhood. The children would interact with the film and their interactions were recorded and played back on a TV 30 seconds later. Seeing themselves on TV was probably more amusing than watching the footage itself.

2 and 1/2 D Cinema

Of all the exhibition halls, my kids were especially interested in “Happy Hawker @ Sensory Studio”. Here, children can make their own pretend food and peddle them in makeshift stalls. My kids spent almost 2 hours in this hall alone, making roti prata, satay, tok tok mee, etc. It’s definitely a new experience for them to learn how Singapore in the 70s was like.

Enjoying a sumptuous tok tok mee prepared by the kids

The Sun Deck was a small outdoor space on Level 3 and parents were encouraged to use this reflective space to relax, recharge and even engage in some quiet activities such as reading. There were many dome-inspired shapes in this space. The installation with the wheels was one of them. The wheels could be gently spun around by children. Unfortunately, my children didn’t really enjoy the Sun Deck and we were out of this area in less than 10 minutes. ;-(

Sun Deck Reflective Space

Just outside the blackbox was an area where you could draw freely on a blank paper your wishes for the museum. The paper was then pasted on the glass wall and the kids were very satisfied when they pasted their creation on the wall personally. LOL!

Clarissa drawing her wishes for Singapore

Since the PlayDome was created as an exploratory space for children’s voices, naturally there were a lot of drawing opportunities for them to express their imagination. Level 2 of the museum was another area where the children could put down their wishes for Singapore and then fold it into a box. These boxes were then stacked onto a huge Singapore map.