Friday, February 27, 2009

Down with a slight sore throat

The last time I fell sick was in March last year, from food poisoning, and I had to stay in the hospital for the night.

It's been almost a year and thank God for keeping me healthy, esp since I'm the sole caregiver to AN, Baileys, Maen and Mr Liow (at least Mr Liow can take care of himself while the formers can't). And thank God this sore throat came just when my parents are around to help me out. hehe.

Feeling feverish (no fever tho) with the soreness in my throat and throbbing in my head now.

Praying that AN will not catch anything from me (except the antibodies in my milk).

Updated 5pm:
I am having fever afterall:(

Starting to sign

AN's learning to speak (and imitates us when we teach her to say things) but I still have not given up on learning to sign with AN.

We've learnt a few signs together. Let me try list them (it's only a short list)
1. Thank You
2. Help
3. More
4. I love you
6. Please
7. Cook
8. Happy
9. Milk
10. Nice
11. Friends

That's all ;p

Thursday, February 26, 2009

To the library and back

Brought AN to the library today with my folks.

It wasn't a long drive, only rather unfamiliar but thank God for the invention of GPS!!

We reached there safely and I managed to park (hehe. I've managed to park in 1 attempt for the past week after I wrote about my disappointment. Thank God for hearing me!)

AN is very new to the library and spent some time orientating herself being surrounded by sooooo books (and so many other kids in the children's book section). She was more interested in the one and only toy that was there and waited patiently for a little boy to finish playing (or at least be willing to share the toy with her).

Got to speak to a Filipino lady who's babysitting a boy 2 months older than AN and she knew the moment I mentioned we were from Singapore, that my hubby is attached to the US army.

We were specifically there for the Toddler Story Telling session that should start at 10.30am and got in on time.

The reading session was fun with not only story telling but sing-along activities as well.

AN was a little tensed and stayed beside me for the 1st few minutes but ventured away to join in the fun once in a while after she was a more comfortable.

She wasn't exactly interested in the story (some toddlers were really participative and offered their own versions of the story the librarian was telling while some, like AN were more interested in walking around) but when it came to songs, AN would run back to me so that I could join in the fun as well.

It lasted 30 minutes and then we left.

AN wasn't too willing to leave and fought to be placed back onto the car seat but thank God she was restrainable. She fell asleep before I even realised she was sleepy.

The journey home was more of a challenge than the trip there.

1stly, the road we came in to the library by, was 1 way traffic (meaning I couldn't go back where I came from, which would be definately more familiar since we came in from there).

And then at the crossroad, Mdm GPS asked me to make a left turn at a wide and busy road which I had no guts to, so I made a right turn.

The view in sight was magnificently foreign (and so my heart started racing faster). I kept going straight while Mdm GPS asked me to make left turns. I decided to make another right turn, reverse and then get out onto the 'left' that Mdm GPS kept insisting that I so obey.

I saw my dad start to look worried and then held on tight as I turned. I could almost hear his fear. hehe.

Once on the right path, or should I sasy, 'left', the rest of the way home was simple. If only I dared make the left turn right from the start *knocks myself on the head*

We got home safely and I felt rather proud of my own venture out from the usual routes. hehe.

I had to clarify with my parents that I DID NOT LOSE MY WAY because I was very sure they thought I was lost. True enough, both acknowledged that they thought I was going the wrong way.

Dad suggested I follow the GPS' instructions even after I was frank I dared not (and that by going the way I did, we could still get home and we did). I had to show him what I meant by not 'daring' coz it was too wide a road with a 'death lane' separating both directions.

I can't let myself be held back by suspicions that my dad is convinced that I'm a lousy driver, even if I'm new.

So, that' my adventure of the day. hee.

Next on the list will be to Gymboree which is just as unfamiliar (to me) and slightly further.


Monday, February 23, 2009

Baileys' Entry: Hi, after a long time!

I think we've lost our faithful buddies to the lack of our very own posts, all thanks to mummy who's been posting on things that make no sense, at least to us.

Lots of catching up to do now, let's see..What have we been up to?

Like most already know, when the adults go on holidays to their own destinations, we get to go spend time with Uncle Jim and Auntie Jo! It's hard not to get excited at the company and the field we get to run freely around, THAT BIG FIELD!

The weather had been cranky, being warm at 28 deg C on some days (like today) and reaching a low of 10 deg C some of the days last week.

Worried that we'd catch a cold, mummy put us in sweaters again, this time even at home. That's one advantage of having winter although some humans do not enjoy the weather when it gets too cold.

Mummy says I look good in red. Do you think so? Or do you think she has a failed sense of fashion? Maen says mummy's just trying to be kind to me.

And then coz mummy says it's so dirty outside, she decided to put on the boots she bought for us loooong time ago.

Testing the boots in our barren patio.

Results show that Maen has a problem with walking in boots, unlike me. I'm more versatile: I can swim, I can strut in boots. What can I NOT do?

Not being able to walk properly in those boots means DIRTY boots! These are Maen's.

Now look at mine, good as before I went out in them.

Watch how Maen walks. muahahaha!

Mummy's little babies thought hard:

Find the blue cable

Wondering why I have so many posts dated today? That's coz I've finally uploaded pictures from my handphone into the laptop! Thus all these diarrhea-like updates. hee.

I really can't tell that the cable is blue in colour leh

Flower cat

AN had her face black-marked mysteriously the whole of last Monday and we did not know how it happened. She did look cute tho, like a dirtied kitten.

Then we realised she got her face dirty while rubbing her cheeks against a balloon with black wordings that come off THAT easily -__________-"

My Good Old Transport

Pictures of my good 4 yrs old transport who's survived the past week with me as driver and without Mr Liow's guidance along the way. This babe looks really new and neat even though it's already slightly past 4 yrs old. Will try take some pictures of its interior.

Credits to my mum for these pictures, and for 'forcing' me to stand there so 'orbidly'.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

In Mr Liow's absence

I've driven my parents out in the afternoons in the absence of Mr Liow who'll be back tomorrow and thank God, we're all still fine.

AN would agree to sit on her car seat once in a while but not at other times.

I was hoping with my parents around, we could help AN enjoy being on the car seat and get used to it so that I will have no problems bringing her out on my own after they leave. We're both still undergoing 'training'.

One day in our previous MPV, I stole glances at AN from the vanity mirror at the passenger's seat in the front and saw that she kept asking for me to sit at the rear to hold her.

I ignored her but kept the vanity mirror in sight so that I could see what she was doing. Mum then reminded me that AN could see me as much as I could see her from the mirror and asked me to shut it back, which I did. AN turned to my mum, twisted her hands and told mum "no more" (meaning to say she can't see me anymore). And in less than a minute, she was fast asleep.

One thing I'm thankful for is that at the very least, she's not crying to have me hold her like she would whenever Mr Liow drives.

She seemed to understand me when I tell her that "mummy has to drive coz papa's not around". I've never had to worry about her screaming after me when I drive, this far.

Just have to work on her agreeing to the car seat at this point.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Driving on my own, and Mr Liow away for 3 days

Took my parents to Walmart yesterday on my own while Mr Liow was at work. Feel increasing confident driving although it does upset me when my parents nag at me for going 'too fast' (THAT WAS THE SPEED LIMIT!! I CAN'T GO ANY SLOWER, CAN I?), worries about me losing my way when I suggested bringing them somewhere further (I HAVE A NAVIGATION SYSTEM IN THE CAR!!), doubting that I'm making turns coz it's my turn and not coz I'm 'unsure'. Simply put, they simply cannot trust me as a driver.

I know where they are coming from, given than I'm a new driver and this is a foreign country to them. But it is discouraging to try so hard to be able to drive (get my license, get the car) so that I can bring them around, only to have them seemingly unappreciative.

That's my parents (remember when I complain that my dad insisted that I will not be able to manage AN if I bring her out on my own? It's the same in this case.)

Guess I just have to prove myself. Dad admitted that he didn't trust Andy's driving skills even after Andy's driving experience during his 2 yrs in Australia, let alone me a new driver, and the usual 'lady-drivers can't drive' mindset.

I'm enjoying driving otherwise :)

Also, Mr Liow has gone for a short weekend exercise and will not be home till Monday. This will happen again next weekend.

Really appreciate Mr Liow for thinking ahead of us, for us.

He got the 2nd car in time, settled the insurance and paperwork, got me well covered so that I can drive in peace when he's not around.

Saw the papers on the table last night and can't help but be thankful that my hubby had it all planned for.

Reminded me of the story about the husband who passed away before the wife did, yet the wife continued to receive flowers on special occassions as per usual to which she later found out from the florist that her husband has ordered flowers for the next few years so that she will not feel lonely or that he's left.

Thanks dear. Miss you and looking forward to seeing you again on Monday. Be safe and take care ya?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Babyish concern

I almost forgot to post this. I have to, coz someday AN will grow up and when she does, to some point, I may forget that she's ever been THIS sweet to me. hee.

Mr Liow and I had a big fight over something small just 2 days before we went on the trip last month.

We couldn't reach an agreement unlike most times, so I brought AN up to the room. It was slightly before bed time and I didn't expect AN to be sleepy but I couldn't stay in the living room with Mr Liow that day.

Once back into our room, I started sobbing.

AN watched me quietly and seemed to be thinking.

Then she came over to me, gave me a pat on my head, then my shoulders, and then she gave me a hug.

She started pointing to corners of the room and 'talked' to me, as if to distract me. Came to a point where she pointed to the same photo canvas on the wall of Mr Liow and I nose-to-nose on the beach and announced "See? Papa, Mummy."

I got even more upset when I saw the photo, took it off the wall, rolled it up and threw it up onto a high shelf.

When I came back to AN, she smiled and told me "no more" while twisting her palms side to side. Then she started to 'comfort' me again by stroking my hair and such.

I tried to lay her down to sleep and under normal circumstances, she would refuse and start looking for tthings to do.

AN was super cooperative that day and slept early, as if she has decided to do whatever she could to make me feel better.

My darling...

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Papa, Mummy, Kiss, Boat.

Papa, Mummy, Kiss
There's this poster-styled picture Mr Liow and I took at the beach for our wedding that we hang on the wall in our room.

Some mornings when AN wakes up, she'll see the picture and tell me "papa", or "mummy" while pointing to it.

This morning was a little different.

She pointed to the picture, told me "Papa, mummy, keesh, lah jet" and gave me a pretend kiss on my nose. Then she decided that it was something else and said "nose, lah jet".

Took me a while to figure out what she was telling me. She was saying "Papa, mummy, kiss, like that" when she gave me the kiss on my nose, and then noticed that it wasn't a kiss on the nose but that our noses were simply touching each other, to which she corrected herself by saying "nose, like that" and rested her nose against mine.

One day few weeks ago during the trip, AN stuck her tongue out and said "baby, lah jet" while pointing to a poster. Takes me a while to process (I'm new to baby language) that she was trying to tell me that the boy in the picture was sticking his tongue out "like that" (and she was imitating him).

I thought she has only learnt to recognise familiar faces in pictures till this morning when she showed me that she's also started noticing behaviour/ actions of people in there as well!

AN likes watching on youtube but I do not expect her to learn much from it. since the programs on youtube are mostly introductory.

The only signs that I practise with her as we watch signing programs together with her are "please, thank you and I love you".

Yesterday while flipping through her "baby's first words" book, she saw the picture of a boat and told me "boat" while holding her hands together to sign boat!

That came as a surprise coz I did not expect her to be paying attention to what she had been watching. Also, it takes me a long time to learn the signs (and then forget them soon after). How can a baby learn faster than a adult, or so I thought.

Who knows, she's probably signed more to me than I have recognised!

It's amazing how babies (hmm...toddlers in her case) really learn fast!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I can't park

It's so disappointing that I can't park even though I can drive.

I can't seem to get in the right way, can't steer in at the right angle, can't steer fast enough to get in at the right angle....


Reverse parking seems to be easier but parking head-in makes more sense here since it's easier to load stuff into the trunk.

That being said, I also can't park reverse well enough.

die lor....can drive already, can't park, also the same....

Monday, February 16, 2009

Nissan Maxima

Mr Liow bought me my 1st new transport today! He said it's my belated Valentine's Day gift..erm...Thanks leh dear. hehe.

It was another aimless day and Mr Liow suggested we go check out used cars, so we did. Then he got all excited about Honda Civic and asked if I was ready to have my own car. The Civic was a little pricey but looked really impressive with its own navigation system.

We walked around a little and I saw this Nissan Maxima in Gold. Its got a built-in navigation system too and almost everything about it is motorised. All seats come with heater selection, even its steering wheel does. And it's got all sorts of gadgets! Have I mentioned that it's cheaper?

Mr Liow took the car for a spin, started to negotiate on the prices of both cars (our Chrysler Town and Country to be traded in for this Nissan Maxim) and before we knew it, a deal was done!

He figured out that since prices of Chrysler cars are depreciating fast, it's safer to have it traded off soon before it gets worthless by next year. After doing the maths, Mr Liow realised that we'd simply be making the same amount of loss holding on to the Chrysler as much as we would if we were to trade it in now and make a loss from the Nissan at the end of our tour.

And we get to drive a Nissan Maxima if we did the trade.

He took over an RX300 from a colleague himself at a super duper good deal (don't jump at the mention of Lexus. It is priced far lower than Lexus back in Singapore, even cheaper than MY Nissan - oohhhh...feels so shiok to call it MY Nissan. hehe!)

So we have a car each from Tuesday onwards. With my own transport now, I can sign AN up for Gymboree classes, bring her around, take BM to the fenced dog park, for grooming, or wherever! That's provided I dare drive far enough without Mr Liow sitting beside me.

Will take pictures of MY new transport tomorrow. hee.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Highlights of the holidays (22 Jan - 5 Feb 2009)

Before I lose track of what happened during our days spent together for the past couple of weeks till Andy left for Singapore again, I better note the events down.

22nd Jan 09
Mr Liow, AN and I arrived at Hotel Mayfair in L.A. considerably early and could rest a little before Mr Liow drove us to Penang Malaysia for dinner.

The room was a little small for 5 adults and poor Andy had to sleep on the floor. hehe.

I just have to mention that I drove us for the 1st part of the long road trip ok? hehe. I drove for 45 mins before Mr Liow took over for the next 8 hours.

23rd Jan 09
We met my family at LA airport and were extremely thankful to see all of them have survived the long flight. Mr Liow had been very worried for my parents prior to this.

Brought my parents to Chinatown.

Mr Liow chanced upon a basketball match in session during the evening and the guys decided to go watch it.

24th Jan 09
Visited Universal Studio.

AN was in a MUCH MUCH MUCH better mood this time than she was when my MIL came over. Our guess was coz Universal Studios was less crowded and less sight-stimulating so she was better able to handle her emotions.

Back at the hotel, Andy went for drinks by himself in the pub downstairs and didn't come back soon enough before mum got worried.

I was watching Little Nonya with my ear piece and mum kept asking me questions about making calls from her handphone to Andy's. She wanted to call him but wasn't sure about charges and how to go about doing so. I was too engrossed to notice but got increasingly irritated by her questions (she would ask, get my answer and stop - I thought she fell asleep, then she asked more questions, get my answer, stop and then ask again, and the cycle repeats.). I gave Andy a call finally (mum didn't want to bother me by making me call Andy but she too was worried and couldn't sleep). Took me 3 hours to finish that 1 episode of Little Nonya that night with mum and my yoyo conversation.

Mr Liow overheard our conversation and teased mum in the morning about getting on my nerves the night before. It was funny how he put it across. haha! I wasn't upset at mum, just irritated. Would have made the call for her if I knew she wanted to call Andy mah. So lo-soh.

25th Jan 09
Went shopping at Dessert Hill Outlet (again.)

26th Jan 09
Universal Studios again to complete the journey through the theme park.

I enjoyed myself better this time round coz AN was more willing to follow my parents around while Mr Liow, Andy (my bro) and I went for rides. Adding to that was her much improved appetite and better behaviour.

AN took much lesser time to warm up to my parents. Mum keeps saying she's a baby-magnet. I've never doubted that. hehe.

Had dinner at Penang Malaysia again (the Hor Fun is SLURPILICIOUS!!! Better than most of Singapore's in fact. hehe)

27th Jan 09
Drove to San Diego and checked into Comfort Inn & Suites.

We had a wonderful stay there. Like its name, the room was huge and comfy. Andy had his own king sized sofa bed to sink into and we had ample space to move and sit around.

AN had not pooped for 7 days by then and she struggled when the strong 'feel' came. That was the worst struggle she's had since birth.

I prayed like I did the previous time against her impending flu and by the grace of God, she managed to push out 7 days' of cement-hard poop. She bled quite a lot (heartache....) in the process. Reminded me of childbirth (I'm exaggerating but the amount of blood was enough to make any adult feel sorry for the little anus).

28th Jan 09
Seaworld, San Diego.

Mum bought her 1st digital camera and was so stingy with taking pictures we couldn't help teasing her. hehe. She's still in the 'film' mode and we had to keep reminding her that the new camera can take more than a thousand pictures unlike the antique at home.

29th Jan 09
San Diego Zoo was supposedly one of world's more renowned, I thought. But after the visit, I thought Singapore Zoo also not bad wor.

30th Jan 09
Visited Old Town in San Diego, took an introductory tram ride around the town's attraction.

The more we go around, the more I like San Diego.

It's clean and beautiful! And the ocean view....OMGoodness....No pictures tho. I will definately take more pictures if we do go back again.

31st Jan 09
Drove back to Tucson and got back in time to rest for the night.

1st Feb 09
Brought the family to Davis Monthan and Mr Liow drove around a bit to show them around part of Tucson.

2nd Feb 09
Advance to Las Vegas.

The journey to LV is long and tedious. It's takes about an hour less to reach LV than it took us to reach LA but coz Mr Liow had to drive through terrains (up and down mountains, through windy roads etc), it seemed more taxing on him, and even passengers (poor driver)

Reached Hotel Flamingo finally in the early evening.

We saw terrible reviews on Hotel Flamingo while deciding which hotel to stay in but decided to go ahead by faith coz this hotel's along the 'main attraction' street and is one of the more economical ones.

Thank God (He's been good all the time!) the room was neat and HUGE unlike what some reviewers wrote! True that the interior of the hotel's old but it is at the very least, clean (except for stained carpets at hidden corners) and 'stay-able'.

Andy and the folks went to explore the Casino while Mr Liow took a rest. When we met up at the lobby to venture out for dinner (at Penang Malaysia in LV this time), mum confessed she won USD$400 in that short hour (what she won, she returned back to the casino gradually during our stay. hahahah! Still, it was shiok to have 'won' USD$400 once)

3rd Feb 09
Visited Premium Outlet at LV (where MIL had her thanksgiving haul previously) and papa, for the 1st time in his life, bought himself something branded.

Spent the evening walking down the streets, taking pictures and watching live 'shows' as we walked (clean ones ok?)

The guys went to get us dinner from Penang Malaysia, again.

Andy enjoyed teasing AN (and AN seemed to reciprocate being teased by him).

I couldn't remember what he asked AN to do and AN did as he told, then he asked her to bring that same thing back to him after she did so, he made her put it back into the box she took it out from.

We were all watching for her reaction and started fall off our chairs laughing: AN grudgingly left the item in the box for the last time and giving a black face, walked towards Andy. That look on my baby's face was priceless..haha! She saw us laughing at her and she started laughing too.

Loved to see how she's enjoying having a bigger family than just us and BM.

4th Feb 09
Sight see, take pictures, gamble (what else can we do in LV?)

Had our last dinner at Penang Malaysia before we fast from Singapore/Malaysia tastes till who-knows-when and then took more pictures.

5th Feb 09
Mr Liow drove Andy to the airport early in the morning. That marked the end of our reunion till we leave Tucson in more than a year's time.

It had been a good 2 weeks we spent together. Mum said the same (Mum and Andy had a good chat in the hotel lobby the night before and that was the best conversation they ever had, IF they had ever spoke like that before).

Andy spent some quality time with AN and I was glad to see how AN bonded with my brother.

Mum asked during our drive back to Tucson if we would miss Andy. I do, of course. Mr Liow asked if she does and she said yes. I was glad to hear that. They had not been talking for a period of time, thanks to someone.

We reached Tucson, finally late in the evening. Mr Liow almost fainted by then. hehe. He had been the only driver and drove such long distances. I promise to be able to drive safe enough for him to trust me on long trips.

6th Feb 09
Welcome Baileys and Maen back home!

So, that was the end of our holiday this time.

What a long post....*phew*

Plogging (picture-blogging) time

There are simply too many pictures of the trips to be put up, so I'm going to be really selective (or maybe not. hehe. Quality is, well, as usual, not top notch. I can't afford to be too selective in this case. hehehehe!).

I've not really taken too many pictures of myself this time round. No mood to doll up and be captured in digital print and I have no idea why. hehe. Maybe coz I'm old already?

So here comes pictures in really random order, more as an update la, ok? ;p There are pictures taken away from the trip too.

At Hoover Dam with my parents

We were at Old Town, San Diego. Mr Liow bought AN her 1st mini guitar. He realised this guitar is only a dummy unit after he tried tuning it back at the hotel. hahah!

Baby dancing to music on the streets. So not-shy

Babies feel no embarrassment at all. AN saw this checkered stone seat, found it cute and started posing, tummy-down.

AN had a good time chilling out with her jiu jiu. hehe. Andy's been teaching her little actions which she willingly and happily acts out.

Jiu Jiu teaching AN to 'kiap' cards with her toes. Wonder what good that will do for her future? haha!
Finally, watching TV together.

Like this 'high five' palm she's showing to the camera...
Jiu jiu was the one who kept reminding her to go 'high five' when posing for shots. She watched on with interest for a start

And then she started performing 'tricks' with her jiu jiu


Mum bought AN this cute Cheongsam for CNY but a pity we were away till CNY was also over. Just last weekend while Mr Liow and I stole some 'time off' for a movie, mum finally got to put it on AN for some photos, together with 2 'bombs' (what do you call them? Fire crackers?).

This picture reminds me, AN's eating habits has improved. She's going 'arrh arrhhhhh' when she's interested in our food more often now and prefers to feed herself. She gets angry when we insist on feeding her (I allow her to self feed since she's capable of doing so herself BUT with my mum around, mum prefers to feed her coz AN takes a long time to finish a tiny portion that doesn't look enough to fill that little tummy and she picks out only vegetables to eat most of the time).

Have finally convinced mum to let AN eat by herself if she insists on doing so.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

AN loves me

Everyone (Mr Liow, mum and my dad) were having bak kwa one fine day while I was doing dishes in the kitchen.

I then heard my mum exclaim something about Adrielle being 'thoughtful towards her mum'. The baby gate to the kitchen was shut and I heard an attempt to open it. Couple of seconds later, AN appeared at the other entrance to the kitchen, enthusiastically waving a bak kwa at me.

She actually dug into the plastic bag for a bak kwa and went around the gates to deliver it to me. Mum is amazed at how AN is that thoughtful towards me.


My baby loves me, although she says 'no no no' sweetly to me each time I ask her if she does.


Monday, February 9, 2009

Chinese New Year Greetings to ALL!

CNY is almost over, and it probably is as you are reading this now but nevertheless, Happy Moooo Year (it's the year of the cow and I'd have friends greeting us in moooo language so it's mooooo language back to you guys too. hehe!)

My parents are now at our place. Mum is keeping herself busy by cleaning EVERY corner of our home, including the front and back patios, so erm....I'll not have to worry about housekeeping for the next couple of months.

Father's doing ok here too, by the grace of God, except that he looked bored most of the time. He looked bored each time he dropped by our place everday before we came over anyway, so I'm not too worried about that. hee.

Thank God the folks and Andy reached LA safely, and for the safe journey we had travelling to and from LA, San Diego and Las Vegas. As always, Mr Liow being the only driver, is most physically drained. Thanks for planning the trip, dear.

It's been half a month since my last entry and having not blogged for this long made me lose touch a little. Am feeling a little lost, unsure of what I want to 'pen' down. hee.

Oh ya, thanks to Mama Joan who introduced me to the Channel 8 show "Little Nonya", I was hooked for the whole of last month since, even throughout the holiday. As long as there was internet connection, I couldn't help but fix my attention on the episodes in youtube.

Have tonnes of pictures as usual but I'm a little lazy to post them. I will tho, as soon as I hope to be.

hehe. This post is really aimless, isn't it? ;p