Alphabet Box: A

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JJ turned 18 months yesterday! My little tot is full of fun and loves to zip around. Getting him to sit and learn is not an easy task, but he is absorbing everything like a sponge. I was pleasantly surprised when he recited the numbers one to ten in Mandarin with some prompting, i.e., I started with “一二三"and he would say “四",with us taking turns to continue counting till "十". I confessed that I had never taught him to count, it was probably his granny who did it. I think instead of making learning structured, it has to be done in an impromptu manner whenever the child’s mood and ability allows such learning to take place.

That said, I would like to introduce a little more structure into his play by having designated “learning” boxes or spaces. We started off with a simple alphabet box to learn about the letter “A”. In fact, JJ knows about the stuff in the box, and this is more to link the letter to the items, which included toy alligator, paper airplane, an apple, an avocado, two colouring pages if he wants to scribble, and homemade flashcards depicting 5 high frequency words. I went through the items with him but he wasn’t too interested except in the avocado, paper airplane and the flashcards (I’m probably one of the few lazy mommies who seldom use flashcards). The reasons being that other things were familiar to him.

I didn’t test him on whether he knows or remembers the words and objects. The activity was just to expose him to different objects and words and let him internalise them at his own pace, and most importantly, to relief some boredom as he does gets bored easily when he gets tired of his toys and books. After getting bored with the box, he decided to push it around and proclaimed that he was pushing a car.

The element of surprise is therefore quite important to hold the child’s attention. Well, when I have the time, I’ll collect some stuff for “B”. And make the box prettier.

Quick, quick jacket

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I found a few balls of lime green cotton yarn in the cupboard. And I wondered why did I even get this colour. I don’t think I would ever get away with wearing this rather odd colour, so I suddenly had this brilliant idea. Why not knit something for the kid? He wouldn’t have any inkling about what is fashionable anyway.

So I grabbed an easy pattern from Ravelry (I love Ravelry by the way), and started knitting and knitting after modifying the number of stitches. I had also modified the pattern a little. This is a really great pattern for commuting as I don’t have to refer to the pattern. The only stitches are knit and purl, which make it tops for a on-the-go project indeed.

As I last checked, I managed to get JJ for a fitting which was perfect. Perhaps I might iron it our for a larger size so that he won’t outgrow the jacket so soon.

Will update more on the modifications after I am done with it.

Something Denim-ish

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Oh yea, something yummy, my newest cast on using Japanese SKI yarn.

This will be going in the round. The funny thing is, I often face a problem casting on in the round and would end up having a tight cast on. The first row is almost always painful. I should go back to the basics again one of these days to see if my technique is wrong.

I’m glad to have a new project which means I can now do knitting on-the-go, as my red tunic is getting heavier.

Way to go!

Week 23 – 24 of 2013 (Month of June)

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FAMILY

Father’s Day would be a sad one for hubby if not for me! Buahaha… I must get some credit at times. He was working and had an hour break, so I rushed down with JJ in tow to meet him for a quick bite at this relatively new salad place that specialises in Japanese salads. Hubby was very very pleased indeed. So was JJ, from his super obedient behaviour throughout the meal and also enjoying himself picking up pieces of food and feeding himself, hubby and me.

OUTINGS

IMM Outdoor Playground – Finally checked out the water play area of the outdoor playground at IMM. JJ was ecstatic, as his favourite activity must be water play! Unfortunately, there was a steep slope leading up the play area, and in his excitement, he rushed down the slope and couldn’t control his steps and landed flat on his face. He was in shocked and cried a short while before forgetting about the pain and went running around the whole place. Poor bub got a bruise on his cheek, and luckily there was no grazes or blood.

His eyes totally buldged when he saw the first drip of water from one of the pipes. He got sharp eyes man. Then everything else is crazy. He was running into the fountains of water, getting into the middle of water pouring down, and of course, I was soaked.

Singapore Art Museum – On a whim, I decided to take JJ to the Art Garden exhibition at the Singapore Art Museum (SAM) just three buildings down the road from hubby’s workplace. I was super tired after a morning shopping for pillows and bolster, but the trip was worth it. Although the exhibition was meant for children, I enjoyed it tremendously, as JJ was also able to enjoy parts of the exhibits. Not to mention that entry to the museums are now free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents! Kudos to the National Heritage Board for making this policy change.

art_garden_2013_a(The Enchanted Garden by Sandra Lee, Source)

I had to drag JJ away from the Enchanted Garden on Level 1 because he could not get enough of the rainbow stairs that he kept climbing up and down.

Around the World in Eighty Days by Vicente Delgado was cool, way too cool.

ad_2013_Tito_s(Source: SAM website)

It was also whimsical like the enchanted garden, with more eye-catching stuff for toddlers! There were large mobile birds that the kids could move their wings through pulling a string, trucks and ships hanging from the ceilings, a ship’s wheel that they could spin and a game of hoops.

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On the third level, we went through a Stellar Cave – lit by ultraviolet lights and its installation was made of thread and screws, how chill is that. We made our way through the “cave”, and I could see that JJ was awed. The next room was for kids to play with making their own designs by using thread to weave around the pre-installed screws on the walls. I must say SAM did a fabulous job incorporating hands on activities for each exhibit. I could imagine how much the children would enjoy it.

Next was the Incredible Magical Expanding Room, where viewers are treated with visual feast of the four walls transforming when one makes a sound through the microphone in the middle of the room. JJ, again, was star-struck (literally – especially when the walls transformed into outer space showing the galaxy of stars).

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We only spent an hour at the SAM, but it was enough for me, as I did not have a baby carrier and had to carry JJ up and down four flights of stairs, not to mention chasing after him and grabbing him up whenever he went out of bounds. Tiring, but a worthy visit.

That’s about all for the early part of June. Meanwhile, the whole of Singapore is suffering from the haze caused by illegal slash-and burn activities in a neighbouring country. PSI rose as high as over 300 points! It is simply awful! Poor us have to contend with staying indoors and skipping the usual daily trips to the supermarket or park. Even play at the corridor is a no-no now.

Its time to think of more activities to engage JJ before he gets too bored.

JJ’s 15th Month Development

The months seemed to be zipping past ultra fast! I am always in amazed at the speed at which the little one grows. Weighing around 10.3kg and at 82cm, he is not an easy one to carry, especially when I need to drag him away from his favourite activities.

 

PLAY/ LEARNING –  JJ has been taking more interest in toys other than the musical ones, pushing and experimenting with toy cars and trucks for longer periods of time instead of just touch and go.

Once, unknown to him, I was watching him as he was having his last milk feed from the bottle in his cot. When he was done with it, he suddenly stood up and put the bottle to his sleep sheep’s face (which was hanging by the side of the cot). Interestingly, he was mimicking the feeding action. And after a while, he removed the bottle and patted the sheep’s head and poked its eyes (which presumably he was telling the sheep to go to sleep or close its eyes). I was rather amused and at the same time pleasantly surprised by his actions. He was also able to feed others either through his own initiative or when asked to do so. Its quite cute.

His favourite play activity are peekaboo and catching. Recently, my brother played this game called “See” with him, which is actually an improvised version of the seesaw – that is executed by sticking out one leg and having JJ lie flat face down against the leg, and being swung up and down. Sadly, this is a game that I could never pull it off, as I have short legs.

EATING – Having meals is still a challenge as his appetite is a roller-coaster ride. There are days when his appetite is non-existent. He wasn’t sick or anything, something which I cannot fathom. He is still rather choosy over food, and would spat out if he doesn’t like the texture. He was having mild diarrhoea for about a week, which caused his appetite to go south. Generally, he isn’t too picky with food – both fresh and bottles ones still appeal to him. And not to mention lots of demands from him whenever he spies anyone eating or drinking – he simply need to have a taste.

PHYSICAL DEVELOPMENT – JJ is in the 90th percentile for height, but his weight did not increase since his first birthday, which was still hovering at the 50th percentile. He can run and turn himself round and round quite competently. He liked spinning himself around and it was a form of self-amusement for him. And he is able to grab my finger and perform spins, though he tended to grab it hard. It’s like spinning a partner in social dance. JJ super loves music, and would tap his foot, sway or bop to the rhythm of the music. Nothing overly zealous like shaking his butt, but still quite funny to watch him. His favourite song continues to be “Wheels on the Bus”, and would do a more animated performance for that song with vigorous hand flapping.

Spotted a new action of him trying to flap his arms like a chicken. Super hilarious!

His pincer grasp is superb now, which is giving me a huge headache as he would pick up small bits of things on the floor and try to eat them. Real gross and potential contributor to his tummy ache.

And gasp! He can open doors all by himself now! A new hazard for me😦 as he might get his tiny toes and fingers squashed by the door if he is not careful.

IMG_0838SPEECH – JJ is quite efficient at learning new words. This month, he added a body part to his growing repertoire of words – “elbow”! I’m surprised that he could actually pronounced it rather well. Unfortunately, his pronunciation for “apples” became “ah-pple-s”. I’m not sure whether it was because he had been listening to Letter Factory’s song for “A”, that made him said “ah” instead. I’m not overly concerned though. JJ definitely could understand far more words than he could articulate. He still could not manage most of the two-syllable words and would only voice out one of the syllable.

That’s so much for the 15th month development, in gist.

Here’s my little imp, enjoying a game of peek-a-boo!

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Weeks 18-22 of 2013 (Month of May)

May 2013 was a fun month for JJ. We don’t usually have time to bring him out for full day outings, so we would be very lucky if he can have half a day out doing something different.

JJ’s Fun Time

JJ finally got to visit a place that holds a special place in my childhood years – The Singapore Science Centre (SSC). I shall not ramble on about how crazy I was with that place, that I was even a member (can you believe it). Anyway, back to the topic. JJ was certainly very impressed with the SSC. First, he went wild over the water fountains in the gardens. On a less sunny day, it would have been a great outdoors adventure for him. The weather was too terrible warm to let him run amok outside, so we had to quickly whisk him in.

The first thing that made his eyes buldged was the baby buggies. He was ecstatic.  Hubby wanted to rent it for him, but I was adamant that he should be interacting with the exhibits so walking is the way to go. How wrong I was.

After going through the first section of the SSC, while we were entering the central area, I decided to let JJ walk by himself. Wrong move. Upon his feet touching the ground, he zipped. He ran all the way, non-stop, towards the entrance of the SSC where we had came from. That was, he backtracked all the way to where the buggies were parked. And once he reached those lovelies, he stuck his foot into one of them. Hubby was delighted and quickly paid for the rental. I grouchily let them went around in the buggy, one boy happily sitting in it, the other happily pushing it along. So much for learning more about science.

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We also checked out the Megabugs exhibition. It was alright, just some gigantic fake bugs moving in their electronically wired limbs, looking a tad eerie. I had some reservations initially as I thought JJ would be scared as the exhibition area was super dark, but he wasn’t.

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There was a funny exhibit on illusions and I propped JJ’s head out of a box. See the photo below. In fact, I was startled by another visitor when her head popped up through the “plate of fruits”. I thought it would be hilarious for JJ to do the same. As usual, I was somewhat apprehensive of whether he would make a fuss if he didn’t like that. To my surprise, JJ was in such a good mood that day, he was in fact very happy to see the fruits around his head and kept saying “apple”. Just see his excited expression.

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Not all was smooth though. The awful part of the outing was when we decided to have teabreak and had to return the rental buggy since we would be leaving soon. JJ was sooooo angry at being forced to leave (his) buggy that he had the biggest meltdown he ever had in his life. He literally went wild, screaming, sobbing, and chasing after his papa pushing the buggy off (who by then was already out of sight) and dashing in top speed around the SSC. I couldn’t keep up with him as he was really running very fast despite his short legs. Amazing right. Eventually he ran into the mirrored area and knocked his head on one of the mirrors and fell. Poor JJ, being robbed of his buggy and then bumped his forehead. I had to forcefully carry him under by arms and marched him off. Eventually the poor kid fell asleep due to exhaustion.

The problem with getting him outside is such meltdowns – once something he enjoys is being taken away or an activity ceased, he would get awfully mad. I guess it will take a while for him to learn to regulate his feelings and frustration, as well as learn about rules. Meanwhile, I have to use whatever distraction tactics I could conjure, in the worse scenario, just carry him away. The latter action is not an easy feat, considering he is rather strong. Aside from the meltdown, I think JJ enjoyed the outing.

Another first for us was when I took JJ out shopping at the Robinson Members’ Sale. It was early in the morning, and I grabbed a latte from Starbucks before going into Robinsons. JJ was quite obedient and was obsessing over the huge ceiling fan while I down my drink. I only had a baby carrier so shopping was down with JJ sitting in the pouch. It was a little challenging but manageable. He only started fussing when we were about to leave. I might do this again when I have the energy to complete another shopping-with-baby-in-tow feat.

Family Staycation

We went to Festive Hotel, for a second time this year. This time round, it was with my mom, brother and SIL.

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Can’t get enough of the vibrant colours of the family room, which comes with a loft bed.

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Here’s JJ checking out the ladder to the loft bed. He couldn’t get enough of it. The baby cot that he had slept in before in Jan during our staycation with hubby now looked small for him. His feet were almost touching the railings.

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And my cheery pie enjoyed himself thoroughly!

About Me

Ever since I got onto the Candy Crush bandwagon, there is no turning back. I’m addicted to the silly game. LOL. But I am making an effort not to reach for the game at every interval when I have a break time. My strategy? Try not to ask friends for lives. It helps to some extent. It is frustrating as well if I’m on a frenzy to clear the level though. Well, I do need time to rest my poor eyes.

There are so many things that I wanted to accomplish, which are all very time-consuming. For one, I need to organise my photos and identify those that I want to print. It is a major project. I’m not even halfway through. And having my newfound determination to continue blogging more actively, I am trying not to be obsessed with photoshopping the pictures. I’m refraining from even the most basic editing because I do spend too much time on it. Plus I have not use the programme for a long time and is currently out of touch with the functions.

About Knitting/Crochet

The new VK Crochet mag looks darn good, especially the bags and accessories. I know there are so many projects that I have identified and the list just keeps growing. Still thinking about whether to buy it on iPad.

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And oh, I have been knitting. Just a wee bit. Not good enough. Time, why do you keep slipping by?

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An Orange Sunset

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Forgot to upload this. The setting sun bathed the neighborhood in a warm orange hue this evening. There’s no photo filter, photo taken as it is. The actual sky was even more beautiful with pinkish shades that the camera did not capture.

New Blog Entry Format

IMG_0204Howdy! My time to play!

JJ’s asleep after some crazy horse play and I’m done preparing my work bag and clothes that I need tomorrow as I would be attending a work conference for the next three days. I’m finally getting down to do a bit of blogging.

With warm ginger tea and some light snacks, I’m all excited to write this post – that is, my new blog post format! Having a new Windows 8 laptop certainly helped me feel super geared up to write and write.

After pondering over how I should continue maintaining this blog, I decided to try out a new way to present my posts. As I am unlikely to be blogging as frequent as I would have wanted, it means that a single post would probably be more informative than what I had done in the past, which was to post by topics.

A general post would comprise of what is going on in JJ’s life, my life, my knitting and crafts. And of course, other miscellaneous stuff. Hopefully, this new way of presentation would allow me more air time in one single post, and would also be segmented under topic headings for neatness and ease of reading.

I have also been lamenting that I had not really documented JJ’s development. Being too caught up in the everyday madness, I didn’t even consider it until someone asked me about him meeting his developmental milestones. Well, it is better late than never! I just hope I can remember most things my cheery pie did, though. It will not be a run down of what he could do vis-à-vis the milestones chart, as I personally do not really subscribe to it as this is just a rough guide for parents.

Will be posting stuff soon, I promised!

 

 

Seeing Red

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Missing in action for a while. Thanks to JJ taking up most of whatever little free time I had, I don’t even have time for knitting these days. I’m just waiting in anticipation for him reaching his 18th month milestone, and zap him to preschool. Gonna miss him loads.

My red WIP has grown much since my last post about it. Pathetic, I know. I never gonna give up my hobby, no matter how little time I have. Then again, going through the toddlerhood with my boy will only be a passing phase, which will be soon gone before I know it. Gotta cherish the special time as much as I can. We can never turn back time.

I have actually decided to make this WIP into a short dress to pair with jeans or leggings. Guess that’s probably the most flattering kind of clothes I can deal with for now. My weight has not gone down despite eating less, so I’m kinda resigned to the new fat me for now.

Aiming to finish up the entire length of the dress if possible by mid June. Hope my yarn doesn’t run out till then.

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I have also been pondering how to let my blog be more active. It is really between writing about what is going on with my life versus a focused hobby blog. As much as I would like to keep Knittyger a pure and simple knitting blog, I felt that there are so much of other non-knitting related stuff that I wanted to write about. A journal of sorts. Should I or should I not?

A busy, fun-filled week and start of work

 

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The past week was a happy break from work, contrary to my initial reservations and irrational fear that Baby will turn out to be a little terror.

My mini one-week SAHM stint ended well, with no major hiccups whatsoever. In fact, if finance is not an issue, I would love to rot at home and just play with my son the entire day. He loves playing and so do I. I can self-entertain and I don’t think I will be bored even doing nothing. Oh, just some wishful thinking on my part. I still love my financial freedom a lot. No need to worry about depending on someone else and feeling guilty or sad for not being able to shop.

LOL. Back to the main topic. Me, hubby and baby had a staycation, went to the S.E.A. Aquarium to look at the wonderful ocean, erm, live exhibits (which unfortunately reminded me of chuka kurage and sashimi), went to the park to laze, shopping and hung out at our fave playground. Baby and I even managed to visit another 2-day old baby friend, all by ourselves. I didn’t end up feeling too tired, thanks to hubby for managing to stick around for a while and my bro for entertaining Baby on weekends. Chores sucked though.

Due to all these excitement, knitting did took a back seat. I bought it to the staycation but didn’t knit a lot, coz I was busy playing games on iPad…

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Updates on my very pathetic social life – managed to catch up with a group of friends for lunch before work, had a great time exchanging news, chatting about kids, an upcoming wedding lunch (for this guy who had ROMed two years ago and unsuccessfully tried to escape from the tea ceremony and “official” wedding banquet). I know catching up should not be a once-a-year event, it is hard when everyone have their own family commitments.

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What of my knitting commitment?

I will upload some WIP photos the next time, when I have something more substantial to show. And I have just taken out the WIP and placed it within sight – so that it is not out of sight and out of mind.

Till then, have a wonderful week ahead and enjoy whatever plan you may have for the weekend.

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