Monday, January 31, 2011

My turn diarrhoea

Just sent the pretty girl to school in the cheongsam my mum bought for her in 2009. Yes, it still fits her, except that we see more of her thighs. Wanted to take a picture of her in it but with jacket and leggings coz it's a cold morning.

It's still raining after 2 nights and a day. This rain hasn't stopped since Sat night after reunion dinner with my parents. Singapore is hardly ever cold, at least since we came back. This is one of those rare days.

Oh, as titled, I'm also having diarrhoea now as well, or probably loose stools. I can't be sure coz both AN and I had been passing loose stools but for once a day at most. Went online to check and realised, to qualify for diarrhoea, one has to be passing loose/watery stools 3 times or more each day.

To bulk up stools, the articles recommended cheese. Since she's not having diarrhoea and she badly craved cheese last night, I allowed her 1 slice of it.

I was surprised cheese made it to the list coz I had been keeping her off diary products, except "mem mem", if that's dairy.

Much as I want to go pick her this afternoon, I probably won't be able to, with such heavy rain. I wish I took a picture of her just now :(

Mr Liow has another dinner tonight so it's better I stay home. Its tiring to return home to a messy house (or patchy-stained floor on good days) each day, having to shut my ears to a crying infant and mop at the same time. Everyday. Patches. At times, puddle of pee at the wrong places. My punishment for not staying home.

Will probably get him to fetch AN home since he'll be coming home to change.

The loose stools better not erupt into anything worse. I can't fall sick and there are still tonnes of things to wash, clean, pack.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Still Having Diarrhea

She's still having loose stools and her temperature at 37.4C. And I just remembered besides her stomach flu after Florida, there was another incident since we came back, thus the packs of pro-biotics in the cabinet.

She's not too interested in the probiotics, so I gave her yakult this morning. She finished less than half a bottle and told me she had enough (............).

Am not going to make her eat or drink too much except plain water unless she asks for food. For lunch, we'll probably get her porridge or something soft/ light.

She didn't sleep well last night. She tossed and turned and puffed in anger at times. And she kicked a lot like night. She didn't sleep as she did on other nights and somehow ended up with her legs aimed right at my neck. I could feel her leg near my neck last night but thought nothing of it, till she gave a strong KICK!


That HURT! That karate kick left my neck throbbing in pain -______-" ! My "ouch" woke up her and she apologised as she stroked my neck.

And she woke up at 7.30am today. I was hoping I could sleep in a little more with the 'night activities' that went on my left (ER) and right (AN) side. One asked for milk, one kicking and whining, tossing and turning.

Am just praying that she will recover soon. There's CNY celebrations in her school tomorrow. It's supposed to be something fun and it happens only once a year. For special days like these, I hope she can be in school so she understands that interesting things DO happen in school (or it could be just me thinking that school is boring, brought down by my own experience since my own school days).

Still, if she's still not well by then, we just have to wait till the next fun activity comes up.

Updated@ 11.50pm:
Temperature gone down to 36.7°C but still having loose stools. Is it diarrhoea if she poops only once a day but loose and watery stools?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

One down, Two down

ER is getting better with less coughing today. But it's AN's turn now.

Was just complaining that she didn't finish her milk for breakfast, didn't want lunch and pooped loose stools.

Then she felt warm after her nap. Thermometer showed 38.1°c. So she was rejecting food for a valid reason today.

We were supposed to meet my family for reunion dinner today and AN threw up on the way there.

She's tossing and turning in her sleep now, seemingly in bad discomfort. I just rubbed some oil on her belly because she complained of tummyache.

Poor thing..whatever that may be, I just pray she'll recover soon.

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Bad Start, moody again

For a start, AN didn't want her milk in the morning.

Then from the very start of her lunch, she didn't want to chew. From blaming mushroom, to vegetables (all her favourites), down to rice grains soaked in soup. 1.5hrs and many many tears later, she finished probably only half portion.

Then somehow she had diarrhea and pooped in her pants (can't remember the last time she had fact this could probably be her 1st time since birth, other than that time during her stomach flu).

And I have to re-clean the kitchen again. MIL said she wants to make us fried rice tomorrow morning. Should I be thankful? I am feeling ungrateful because we are days from Chinese New Year. Mum despite being busy with AN, came to cook and helped me clean the kitchen already. I have to clean it all over again. It's not as if I can complete cleaning in 2 hours without distractions. With an infant (those who have been through this will know), it's takes at least double to triple the time needed to complete a simple task.

Oh, and the hubby was so sweet to offer to ferry the mum to interchange (even though there's a direct bus there). That reminds me of that bad thought that I apparently failed to shoo off yesterday.

Importance as ranked:
1st) Mum to interchange to meet friends even with direct bus
2nd) Early lunch with Colleagues
3rd) ER and I to Mt A to see Dr

To be fair to the daddy, he was having early lunch before fighting battle again, not on leave. If he was on leave, or able to take leave to bring ER to see a doctor, he most likely would have. Anyway, the mum rejected the offer. Quoting her: "I'm learning to be independant."

Is Neigi's suggestion (that I go and work) going to help turn negative thoughts positive? I should consider because I probably have TONNES OF TIME at home to read so much into things.

It's going to take a little while for me to shoo this away. With this current mood swing that I'm experiencing now, it'll take a while. I'm going to keep myself occupied now. Ta-da.

The School Through Mr Liow's Eyes

Mr Liow has really funny observations of the kids in AN's school and his descriptions never fail to make me laugh.

He said he sees 4 "zombies" already in school every morning of the weekday. 3 will be munching lifelessly on their breakfast, 1 simply floating around the classroom. Times when AN is not crying, she will join those at the table by default. I don't know if she turns into a zombie too but she is usually awake and chatty on her way to school.

AN had been sharing her peanut butter biscuits with her classmates. 2 days ago when the door opened after school, I saw her seated on the floor with her lunchbox emptied of biscuits in front of her and a friend. She said she shares with them and that's sweet. Hehe!

Yesterday when Mr Liow took her to school, she was ok and did not cry. He saw the same 4 "zombies" and the floating "zombie" drifted towards him. She then started inspecting him from head to toe while circling around him.

The moment AN sat at the dining table and took out her lunchbox (told her she can have biscuits if she doesn't want breakfast from school), the other 3 "zombies" drifted toward her like magnets.

Really, when school starts this early, the kids turn into zombies. Hehe.

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Friday, January 28, 2011

My Lao Gong is so smart!

I have this app in my Android phone that helps locate it when it's misplaced, simply by using another phone to send an sms to the SIM card used. The app when activated, changes the setting of my phone so that it rings at its loudest. So, it doesn't matter if it's originally on silent mode or vibration, I'll be able to find it since it'll be THAT loud.

MR Liow was trying to reach me but I was far far away from my phone which was on silent mode. No prize for guessing what he did: He sent me the same sms I used from his phone to send to my own each time I misplaced it.

And I was wondering how on earth would I set the volume of my phone to the max when it's usually near the kids and it's almost always on silent mode. Till I saw an sms that says: "Where's my phone"

My hubby so smart! And now you guys know how to get me urgently when I miss your calls. But don't try it all the time coz I may really be lying down with the kids and that loudness will scare the earth out of them.

Never thought of using the app the way he used it. hehe.

A Visit to Mt A

ER is still coughing and it sounds bad at times, especially at night. In fact he threw up in the afternoon when we were at my parents' place after coughing violently.

Having learnt from experience (AN had to suffer lung infections for us to learn not to wait for too long before bringing the kids to see a doctor), we decided to bring ER to see a doctor.

So, after MR Liow took AN to school, I fed the furkids and then took ER out. WAnted to ask if Mr Liow might be able to fetch us there coz it didn't seem justifiable to pay the surcharge if I were to take a cab there (surcharge for peak hours start 7.30am - 9.30am, if I didn't recall wrongly). He would only be able to make it after 10am, so I decided to go ahead by ourselves.

Cab uncle is a neighbor from our opposite block. We didn't have to wait for long and I was surprised because I used to have problems (before we left for Tucson) getting a cab here. Plus UGLY people who have no regards for others also waiting for cabs, see one, flag it down and then get on it, even though they noticed you already there waiting (for who-knows-how-long). AN asked me why it was not our turn yet when I took her out waiting for cab once. Even kids know people take turns..But, not really when we are back in Singapore..

Truth hurts, but back in Tucson, most (I won't say all) parents teach their kids to wait in line, whether in Gymboree, or playgrounds. Here, parents (or grandparents) either shove the kids to the front and tell them: "hurry up!" or turn a blind eye when the kids innocently push around to get to where they want to be. This is most common at lift landings while we wait for lifts.

So these kids grow up to be adults who do not look around to see if they are first to wait for cabs (or even buses). This is not wrong. It's just not gracious. And I guess to some, it's more practical to get what you want than to be considerate or gracious.

Ok, I'm done with the ranting about manners. As I was writing, I was still blessed because soon after this young lady snatched my cab from right before my eyes, our cab uncle from a neighbouring block came out. He's old and drives super slowly, traffic was heavy and he took another way which he assumed should be better and turned out to be just as bad. I don't blame him. At 8.30am, traffic is heavy everywhere. Cab fare wasn't as scary as I expected it to be. hehe.

The wait at Kinder Clinic wasn't long either. We spent merely 1.5 hours out of the house!

Mr Liow was having breakfast when I called him after we were done. hmm...I was actually wondering why he didn't offer to come fetch us when he had time for breakfast. HE didn't even call to ask if ER was ok or if we had seen the doctor. Was quite disappointed that he rather spend that free hour with colleagues and wondered again, where we were on his priority list, if we were on it. Bad thoughts huh? Shoo.

Cab uncle who ferried us back home had to rely on GPS because he said he wasn't familiar with Fernvale Lane. I didn't realise he took a wrong turn but he was honest and charged me lesser because he was aware the distance was longer with that wrong turn. I paid him what was on the meter. Being honest alone was reason for reward, in my opinion la.

I just realised this post is very much like what a primary school student would have written about an excursion or life is so meaningless...

Whenever Mr Liow gets to meet friends or colleagues for meals or coffee, I wish I will one day, get to meet my girls for the same things too, without the kids. I do crave freedom too...but will that one day come?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Goodnight Prayer

What better way to end the day with a prayer!

It works almost the same as a bedtime story, except that we actually talk to our Creator before drifting into a state of rest.

Life is hectic as it is. Returning home to pee in the kitchen where it shouldn't be for 2 consecutive nights and a house, littered with every single item previously kept in my diaper bag but ransacked through by the bored furkids the day before, one can only pray for peace at heart. And self control.

The Lord taught me to take things one step at a time.

1) I had been asking for self control, so while Mr Liow was out till late, I was put to test.

Scenario 1: Returned home to a big mess with things ALL OVER THE house, emptied from diaper bag. Pee in kitchen that flowed all over (big puddle).

Action taken: Pack and mop

Divine intervention: Infant slept through the packing and cleaning, preschooler less requests than usual, nothing destroyed or forbidden food consumed by the k9s in the ransack. One-up level for self control.

Scenerio 2: Mr Liow was home with us. Infant not in best of mood (and health. He puked a whole lot of milk at my parents' place), preschooler with tonnes of 'tasks' she felt like doing. Pee in kitchen for a second time.

Action taken: Cleaned up pee with paper towels. Mr Liow helped with mopping. Ignored preschooler's never-ending requests and non-stop whining in exasperation to chit chat with the unwell infant in the room.

Divine intervention: Felt peace, whose existence I have forgotten about completely! Anger at preschooler's tantrums subsided sooner than usual.

And while trying to coax the youngest to sleep (he wasn't as easy as most nights. He didn't want to nurse, didn't want to be rocked..practically nothing soothed him), the elder asked to drink milk.

For missions impossible, I asked for help by praying.

The Lord soothed both kids to sleep as He listened to me. I told Him I wanted to hear Him again. I heard no voice but I saw His work when I opened my eyes to the sleeping kids.

Life can be hectic, but it can be simple and peaceful. If only I be still and let the Lord take charge.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Girly AN

I was changing ER's diapers one day last week and AN was doing 'makeup' on herself in front of the mirror.

She came to me saying: "mummy look at me! I put blusher and I look so pretty!"

Thinking nothing of it (coz she pretends to put makeup on herself quite often), I took a quick glance and turned my attention back to ER before his poop shoots out at me..but something wasn't right. I thought AN had dark patches on her face....? Or was that shadows caused by the lights, that I've never noticed?

I took a closer look and realised that she DID put makeup on herself: She shaded her nose and under her cheekbones!

I asked her what she used to make herself up and she shared with me her secret: dark blue colour pencil on her nose and cheeks.

AN has an obssession with dresses. She wants to put on a dress all the time! She asked to wear a dress to school (thank God the lower half of of her school uniform is a skort. It looks like a skirt from the front at least, so she insisted less on wanting to wear a dress to school), wants to put on a dress to sleep at night, and only dresses to go out in.

She loves to look at pictures of Disney Princesses and asks to have a long long dress which in her words, is "so long it touches my toes" and keeps reminding us about it. We are looking for one, at least.

Hair Pins and hair styles
She pins her own hair up if I forget to, especially now that her bangs are so long they prick her eyes. She likes pretty pins and when she does pin her own hair up, she'll go "Look mummy (or whoever's around her), I pinned my own hair up. Pretty right?"

And in the morning before school, she tells me how she wants her hair to be like for the day: One pony tail, 2 pony tails, 1 braid, or 2 braids.

And not just that, she wants me to do it the way she wants it: "Mummy, I wants my pony tail to be this high.", and points to her ears. She wants her pony tail to stick out from behind her ears.

My vain pot.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Truly Blessed I

Told mum yesterday that I won't be going over to their place today because housework had been piling up. Days when I do not go over, AN remains at my parents' place without me and Mr Liow will go fetch her in the evening.

Mum actually suggested making lunch for me from their home so dad can bring it over. The rest of the plan remains.

Early this morning , she called saying she planned to cook for us at our place and dad would bring AN back to our own place. Fine with me.

While mum cooked, I managed to get most of the laundry done. Dad reached with AN soon after and helped me fold the clothes as I tucked the kids in for nap.

Mum didn't just cook. She helped me clean the WHOLE kitchen after cooking. The stoves have been washed, table tops, cabinet doors etc.

That's what I mean when I write that my parents help when they notice that I've not had time to do some stuff. They do NOT add stress by questioning me on my time management or why I overlook some things. Or flare up at me.

I got most of the work done with my parents' help. Thank God for them. I'm secretly wishing my MIL will not be cooking this weekend coz she is better at cooking than cleaning. Just one session is enough to put my mum's toll & sweat to waste.

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ER's 1st Flip and his ability to grab

He did a complete flip this afternoon right before nap time! I was busy with AN and he was impatiently fidgeting while waiting to be nursed to sleep. He was kicking hard and already lying on his side with one leg crossed over the other looking ready to flip, and he was largely inspired, by frustration because I wasn't responding to him. Haha!

AN and I waited for THE moment and it happened! The big sister went: "Yeah! Good job Ethan!" Like we told her when she flipped for the first time :)

The boy showed his newly acquired skill to Mr Liow while I was doing something else.

He's a stronger baby. It took AN a few times of flipping over with one hand stuck underneath her belly to learn to pull it out. I think she just wasn't as strong. This Ethan flipped over (with some efforts coz he's still a newbie aftall) and grudgingly pulled his hand out before grumbling further. Mr Liow said he was able to pull his hand out the second time too.

He's also better at grabbing things now. He stretches his hands out when we shake a rattle at him and he takes it. The rattle stays in his hands for about a min or two before he loses interest.

He attempts to put the rattle into his mouth and succeeds at his first attempt, because he has mastered stuffing his whole fist in, sometimes 4 fingers). It's not too different.

One step closer to civilisation. Next up, we'll probably be waiting for his 2 front to sprout! Hehe.

Tired and Grumpy Ole Me

AN has recovered from her blocked nose and I thought ER had too but he's starting to cough since 2 days ago. It's worse at night.

Because of that, he's waking up every hr or so in discomfort but I am thankful nursing helps calm him down. Usually in the morning after AN leaves with Mr Liow (abt 7.30am), I'll start doing some housework (be that cleaning, laundry) so that by 11am, I can wake ER up for a bath before going to fetch AN.

For the past 3 wks since school started, 2 wks since they caught the mucus bug (I wonder if ER is still fighting the same one, or something different), sleep had been even more scarce than before. I tried to catch up on more sleep by going back to bed after AN left for school, ignoring housework a bit.But because ER kept waking up, I couldn't really rest too.

And so, having not enough sleep, watching housework pile up, and having not planned well to complete tasks, I'm increasingly touchy, even over tiny matters.

We came home from my parents' plc few hours ago and I tried to ignore the pee stains on the floor (I just tried to not look down). But as I walked about, I saw the overflowing laundry basket (I washed a batch just yesterday and to be sure they dry thoroughly, I can only bring them down 2 days after washing, which is tomorrow), I saw long dued bedsheets to be changed, I saw dust collected over the week as a result of my "no-housekeeping" coz I was at my parents' place during weekdays and out on both days of the weekend.

What set it off was bread crumbs that AN dropped on the bed. I tried to be less strict and allowed her to eat in the room (partly also coz I was really tired and just wanted to lie down a bit.) I shouldn't have allowed her to. She innocently became my target of frustration.

I got grumpy and started clearing up. Since I've powered up the Delphin, I might as well vacuum the whole house. Mr Liow upon noticing that AN is taking forever to finish her London Choco Roll, asked her to put the whole piece of whatever is left, in her mouth. She did, coz she knew mummy was upset about the crumbs already. It was too large a piece for her to swallow and she ended up spitting it out. That added on to my already foul mood.


AN can be sensitive at times like these. She apologised to me after a while, for dropping crumbs and then spitting out her food. In the first place, it was my fault that this happened. If I hadn't suggested she eat in the room, if I could just push myself a little more to sit with her at the dining table, these won't have happened.

She noticed my still-grumpy face while I was helping her at the toilet and asked: "Mummy, are you still angry? Why are you still angry? I said sorry already. I'm sorry mum." And started telling me that she loves me.

I knew I was still feeling grumpy, over nothing in particular by then. I couldn't help it.

Sms-ed Mr Liow while I was lying with the kids in their room to just share how I feel. I wasn't angry at anyone. I just felt grumpy, foul and very touchy.

Mr Liow was so sweet. He suggested that he forgo the Wed dinner with colleagues to stay home to help me. The dinner doesn't affect the situation much. I badly need self control to bring about change!

He got up a little earlier than usual to help me clear up BM's mess in the toilet too.

AN, too, assured me that she will try her best to not make me angry.

Lord, please grant me self control. Please give me the ability to pause before reacting to situations and the ability to choose a positive response so that I bring joy and cheer into the family instead of anger and impatience. I fail in this all the time because I can't do it on my own. But I can do it through you who gives me the strength to.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Our Adrielle

Miscommunication is...

AN: "Daddy, hold my fishballs for me."
Me: "Do you still want them, coz if not Daddy will finish them."
AN, distracted: "ok".

Daddy ate the fishballs.

Minutes later...
AN: "Mummy, you don't finish my fishballs ok? If not when I want to eat them later, I have no more."
Me: "Huh? I thought you said you didn't want them anymore? Coz Daddy finished them already!"
AN: "Daddy, don't eat them please! I want to eat them later!"
Daddy: "WHAT????? But you said you didn't want them anymore??"
AN: "I thought we were going to gu gu's (My SIL) house, that's why I ask you to hold for me only!"


And she is like Donkey, out of Shrek

AN: "Lalal....wo bu shi... lala..." (Singing to her self composed music and self inspired lyrics)
Me: "Adrielle, please keep quiet. Ethan is falling asleep. Please don't wake him up again."

AN went silent and all was well....till she started humming softly, slowly increasing her volume.

Me: "Adrielle....pleeeasssseee...."

Silence again

AN: "Mummy, you know what? The other little children keep giving me sweets in school." (Starts sharing everything that happens in school for the millionth time in the middle of the night when she was supposed to be sleeping)
Me: "Yes I know. Can you tell me more tomorrow and SLEEP NOW?"

ER started fidgeting by then and AN went silent again.

Less than an minute later
AN: "Dang dang!"(to the tune of an ending to most common jingles)
ER started crying and I was super irritated by then. AN hurriedly apologised.

All was silent again for a long time... and then .....
AN: "Mummy, can I have mem mem?"


ARGH....!!!!! ADRIELLE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

First Blood

ER slashed his own face with fingernails sharp as razor blades. They didn't look long enough to need a trim but because it was Friday (and MIL usually comes on Fri nights), I thought it was good time to trim his nails. Else it's common I get asked: "why are his nails so long? Don't you trim them?"

Fact is, I do. But they sure grow fast. The nails need trimming twice a week if I prefer not to have to repeat my answer every week to the same question: "I TRIMMED THEM JUST A FEW DAYS AGO!!"

God gives mummies strong and usually accurate gut-feels. Something told me I should NOT cut his nails that Friday (the one that had just gone by) but did so anyway, ignoring the voice that said to wait till they grow a little longer.

True to its word, seconds after the first nail came off, ER started crying. I wondered if I snipped too close to his quick, fearing the worst. It didn't look too bad for a start; it looked like I did cut too near but didn't do much damage.

The moment I finished telling myself : "It's not too bad.", the tip of that index finger started bleeding. It bled, and bled. I washed the finger, applied pressure, checked to see if bleeding stopped after 5mins, saw that it didn't, continued applying pressure for 5 more mins, checked again, saw blood, applied more pressure, checked and repeated.

After 15 mins, I was using a second piece of tissue paper to press on the wound because the first piece was bloody. Not soaking in blood but bad enough for an infant :*(

Tissue paper is no good, coz the fibres may stay in the wound and possibly cause infection. Also if the cut was bad or if the clipper wasn't clean, that's double the chance of infection. But I didn't have anything else to press the wound with. :(

It kept bleeding, so I kept wiping. *heartache* I wondered if he would go into shock from losing too much blood.

The "Voice" told me again: "Drip some breastmilk on the wound. BreastMilk is antibacterial." I trusted it this time.

That finger continued bleeding for a while more and diluted the drop of B-Milk on it. I had to clean it off and drip another drop on his finger. I wished I could use a plaster on him but no, because he chews on his hand. That may worse what's bad enough.

At this point, 2 and half days later, the wound has healed completely (in fact it healed the next day but one could still a tiny scar on the finger tip on Saturday).

I'm hoping there will be no infections and fever as a result of it, no profuse loss of iron, no "anything else unforeseen". 

And lesson learnt: Trust the "Voice". I'd rather let him scratch himself a little here and there than to do something just so that I can answer to someone. In this case, I have only myself to blame for lacking discernment.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Less Is More

Silence is gold, more so when two people have different opinions.

We've never sent my parents gifts during CNY and my parents never mentioned anything about it. These are formalities, some traditional practices that my parents have never expected of us.

She came, questioning me on why I did not buy my parents CNY goods. I replied that my parents never asked for any of such and she insisted that daughters should not go home empty handed.

But of course....this is what SHE would have expected of her own daughter to strictly follow. No prizes for guessing why I appreciate my parents more. They do not stick THEIR traditions onto us and expect us to follow...unlike her.. I was soooo tempted to reply: "They are not THAT old fashion.", exact words she used when she commented that my mum fed me traditional confinement soup: "Your mum very old fashion. I'm more modern."

My foot.

That is not being modern. The right words to use are "more ignorant". And no less "old fashion" like most other elderly, especially Asian elders. Please, don't live in self denial, still believing that you are westernised, just because you've visited many parts of USA and prefers it there.

And while I was settling the kids in the room, putting them to bed, Mr Liow was outside, helping her fix her laptop. When I came out finally, he was still at it.

I asked if he had taken his shower to which he replied that he hadn't. She wanted her laptop be fixed "by tonight preferably". She heard him and commented: "You shouldn't be bathing so late. Its bad for health."

Any concerned mums would have hurried the son to have his shower first before continuing. What a concerned mum my hubby has. Such concerns for her OWN stuff LOR. She continued asking him about her laptop instead of worrying about his health. Just like how she said he should rest coz he was tired but went on to ask him to drive her to factory outlet that's about an hour's drive away (or more), just to get a luggage to jam up the already crowded car.

"Mums are the best", she always says. I say, it depends.

Some relationships survive better when words are few. Especially in one where respect is no longer present. No one appreciates advises from a person who expects more of everyone else than herself.

I'm proud of MY mum. She deserves the award that someone else has been frequently emphasising about. She's not the best, but at least she does things for us without expecting returns, and sincerely cares for our well-being, not by simply saying: "You should not bath too late." Actions speak louder, remember?

Seriously, BTH.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Attempt #1

Status: Fail

Tried twice. Once when he wasn't really hungry and he didn't want, obviously. Second attempt tried when he was really hungry. Too traumatising for him and we failed again. Hehe.

Wasted 8oz of milk....but not really. The furkids got to drink again. They got it the first time when AN was an infant. Let's see how they do this time. Dared not give them too much, only 4oz from the first try. The remaining 4oz is going to waste. It still pains me to watch the milk go down the drain. And I thought being a 2nd time milking mummy means I'm less inclined to feel it.

Bottlefeeding breastmilk is troublesome. U need to thaw milk, then heat it up. And there's the sterilising part. Lots of work.

I tried to be smart and bought a set of wide base medela teats from USA but after sterilising, when milk was FINALLY warm enough, I realise the teats didn't fit the regular medela collars.


I had to dig into the cupboard to find the regular teats that came as together with the bottles and collars.

Glad I bought the sterilising bag from Amazon, so sterilising those accessories were made a little simpler.

He was crying so badly he turned red during our 2nd attempt. Before he starts turning purple, I latched him. The first time since days ago, he happily latched on and DRANK without fidgeting.


Need to get him more used to the bottle, else I can forget about taking assignments.

For tomorrow, I've prepared 3 packs in the fridge to be thawed in time.

Baby boy, you can do it ok?

Praying for Charmaine

There had been a period of time when I saw banners and links to this blog of a lady who's fighting cancer with her baby girl, Charmaine.

Lest we all forget, the little girl is still fighting. Her mum's appealing for O+ blood. The blood goes into a public bank but even though we won't be able to do a donation specifically to Charmaine, it does help in that her wait will be shortened.

The last time I wanted to donate blood, I was rejected coz I didn't meet the weight requirement (45kg). Now it seems the minimum weight is 50kg.

I'll try to link her to my blog first chance I get to be on the Mac today. I'm still not too familiar with Mac and had no time to familiarise. Hope to get it done so more of you can follow the mummy's posts and pray for the family.

Each time I read about Charmaine, I tear. Her mummy's so strong, so is the little girl. Here I am, whining about Adrielle's tantrums and eating habit when one mummy out there is fighting with something extraordinary and still is trying to stay strong for her girl each day.

Please keep the family in prayers as the Spirit leads. And if you somehow feel prompted to help in any ways, please do not hesitate.

Here's a one-time link before I put it on my side bar later.

Slowed to a halt

Our boy has all sorts of behaviours. Most often, he wouldn't want to suckle to sleep (in my arms) and for the past wks, he drinks (as in a proper feeding session) only when lying down on the bed, refusing when I offer him while holding him in my arms. If I insist, he'll suckle for less than 5mins and goes without a feed for anything been 3-5 hrs (he makes noise in between, especially when he needs to sleep. He rather be walked to sleep on most occasions). And he falls asleep, seemingly on an empty tummy.

It was something else tonight: his eyes were closed but he was drinking while lying down, moving his hands and kicking his feet. He pushed me away, so I thought he probably didn't want to drink or suckle anymore. Picked him up to walk him but he couldn't sleep either. In fact, walking him actually woke him up. All these while, he made no noise.

FINALLY after more than an hour, on my latest attempt to nurse him to sleep (after trying and repeating the usual methods), his feet stopped kicking and his hands moved slow....till they came to rest.


Was wondering how long he'd take to get to dreamland and praying that all those fidgeting won't end up upsetting him and making him cry. Thank God the zzzzz-bug kissed him in time.

Is this his new 'stunt'? Hmm....

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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Not enjoying school

Past 2 school weeks were good. She would wake up, leave with Mr Liow and upon reaching, put her bag and bottle away before washing her hands and sitting for breakfast.

It's different this week. She cried from Monday and it's Wednesday today. It got progressively worse since Mon.

Mr Liow said the teacher told him she took a long time to settle down. I wondered if it was coz she was sleepy but Mr Liow didn't think so. He said she was chatty in the car.

I wonder if it's the school then. We signed her up at the first opportunity we got and have never once sat in with a class.

She started school full of enthusiasm for a start but just when most kids are getting used to school, she's starting to NOT get used to it. Seems like school is not like what she thought it should be like, or used to be?

I wonder if it's coz school is no fun?? Did school kill her excitement? I had fears that she will start to hate learning with the strict academic system in Singapore. Is this an indication already?

It does feel different when we bring her to school. Atmosphere in class is different frm Gymboree. Maybe preschool is different from Gymboree, or schools in Sgp are generally boring. It's fun and exciting whenever we get to Gymboree. There's music, and lots of colourful things in class. Here in Shekinah, we enter a quiet room with kids quietly eating. No games, no toys, no music, no colourful and cheery things to see.

Is that normal?

I feel like taking her out but will we be able to find her a school that's more fun? Seriously, it's too early to kill her interest to learn.

Am I paranoid? Should I let her continue for the whole N2 year and switch her elsewhere from next year?

Times like these, I start missing Tucson again. I think she'll be happier learning there. :(

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Amazed by Delphin

One day, last week, Delphin lulled the little boy to sleep on air purifier mode.

It did the same thing again on Saturday while I was vacuuming the house at its highest power. Even Mr Liow was mystified by how it worked because, with high power comes loud noise, usually. Delphin is noisy at its highest power but the noise it made while at work was hardly disturbing.

That's one more plus point for us after ER got lulled to sleep the first time.

That wasn't the only thing that impressed me.

I forgot to dump the dirty water from the tank after use yesterday morning and when I used it this morning, the citronella scent from the essential oil I used in the tank the day before, remained fresh! It didn't smell a single bit foul.

This reminded me of how the water in our then-new Iecology stank after I left it in the tank for about half a day after cleaning. It stank bad after only a few hours!

And Delphin's water tank is so much easier to clean after use: just a tank compared to iEcology's many parts besides the odd-shaped tank.

I'm enjoying housekeeping with Delphin. Hehe.

UPDATED @ 3:06pm, 18 Jan (Tuesday)
They arranged for a product training which was a total waste of time. Anyone who has ever used a vacuum cleaner knows how to use those accessories. Delphin didn't come with many.


When I asked about cleaning up liquids before we bought it, we were told we could. Then I realised I could only pick up small amounts of water, little at a time, with the metal bar. No rubber squeegee part given, not even if I want to buy it. The lady just said: "No way to do it." And gave me the why-do-you-need-a-squeegee look, even after I explained that we wet-mop the house sometimes and want the machine to be able to pick up water so we don't need to worry about kids slipping.

I asked about the shampoo function and she looked blankly at me. Had to show her the picture from their manual before she understood. She referred me back to sales and said she won't know much about that.

If she came to sell us the machine, it would be easy to say no. Coz she made the machine appear lousy.

I still like Delphin. I just wish it's Iecology in a Delphin body. Or rather, I wish Delphin is able to do what the Iecology can. It's 2.5 times the price of my snow white afterall..

Too bad for us. This is not USA with a 30days money back satisfaction guarantee. This is $ingpore.

P.s: I still enjoy using it. Just didn't think it's worth paying that much for. It's worth probably as much as ecology or less. Don't you (mm ma & whoever owns one) think? Hehe. No bian liao.

Super Annoying

REALLY. ... AN seems to be on my nerves over almost everything.

She wants things and doesn't take "no" or "wait" as answers. She takes eternity to finish a tiny portion of food, as usual. What's new? That she's also learnt to not ask for things properly. It's increasingly common that she's stomping to get things her way.

Best thing is, when Mr Liow and i are ignoring her bad behavior, one 'kind' soul steps in to nicely assure her: "don't cry ok? Its ok. I love you.see? You make daddy and mummy angry." And repeats the "I love you, don't make them angry k? Otherwise they won't love you."


Bad behaviour is NOT ok! And being angry does not make us love her less. And quit stepping in when she's vulnerable. She needs to know she's being punished, not unloved!! What we need is a common stand. What she's getting is misconception that bad behaviour makes the whole world angry but grandma still loves her.

Why don't she take that 'kindness' and show it to the nieces? Coz she can't! Its easier to be nice when you are not in charge of discipline!

If you can't help, then step back. Don't make things worse...

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Ethan Ryence at 3weeks into his 3rd month and my 'mummyhood' thoughts

He was able to grab his own hands since a couple of weeks ago, just in time to do the 'gong xi gong xi' for Chinese New Year, or so we thought. He's still doing it but lesser the past few days but he's grabbing everything else that goes near him.

He's grabbed my glasses when I put my face close to talk to him, grabbed my hair (easily, like AN used to) and my clothes too. hehe. And he looks at what he got in his hands, surprised and probably proud that his hands actually do something besides wave around uncontrollably!

He's able to turn to his side but not flipping yet. AN started flipping after her 4th month so I'm not too worried although it will be nice if he starts to show signs of flipping soon. A friend's son who was born same day as ER has turned (she said turn but seems to mean flip. That's so fast! So the KS-ness in me is a little hoping that ER will do the same soon. hehe.)

Baby Center suggests that ER should be able to push himself with his hands and lift his head up during tummy time. He's able to lift his head up but not as steadily as I imagine the article suggests he should be. But it's ok. A head lift is still a lift.

Dr Tan told us on Wednesday: "I'm sure by now you would have realised that boys are a little slower than girls." He remembers AN even though we didn't bring her with us to ER's vaccination-cum-checkup appointment. That's why we wouldn't mind waiting 3 hours for Dr Tan. He's like a friend (and he even said he's seen our kids grow since AN was a newborn and we're already friends)

I have noticed and do remember that was what I read in the baby books long time ago when AN was an infant herself. Still, it's only a little less than 4 months. Concluding that ER is slower than AN is a little unfair, to him.

Both of them are just, different: AN more cool, ER more smiley. AN more reliant on me, ER more on Mr Liow. AN very petite at 3% (still is) and ER fleshy at 75% (duno how it's going to be like when he starts semi-solids).

I think AN at this age was able to hold things well enough (hold and drop) while ER is still at the earlier stage of being able to hold. I may have remembered wrongly.

"They do catch up with girls later on in life". Dr Tan echoed what I remembered reading in those books too.

Here's a record of his growth:
Heigh: 61.5cm (Mr Liow said he saw 65cm and kept staring at the 65cm mark where ER's heels were but the nurse recorded it as 61.5cm..oh long as he's growing.)
Weight: 6.4kg
Head circumference: 40.5cm

I've checked AN's booklet. ER is bigger in all physical aspects than AN at her 5th month checkup (likely even bigger than she was at an older age). This is his 3rd month checkup!

What remains the same with the both of them is, they are our bundles of joy.

AN at age 4 (this April) is a little more of a handful with her "I-know-it-better" and "I-do-what-I-want-to...NOW". But she tries to step out of that "stubborn" shell and when she does, she's an angel. And those things she says..I should compile them and quote them back to her when she grows up. Mr Liow wonders who taught her to say things she said. It's the Lord who created intelligence and she's just reflecting His work by listening, processing and then speaking (and acting). So it's important we model only good and right things, say only kind words. I struggle in this area, especially when she upsets me. But I will not give up trying.

ER? His smiles, his baby talk, his gazes...aww....I never thought I could fall in love with an infant. AN was not easy because she was our first. And it's no joke getting no sleep, getting sore, cracked and bleeding nipples from nursing for the first time, handling an infant for the first time. To be fair to AN, if she was my 2nd baby, I'd be having an even easier time than I am having now because AN was actually an easier baby than ER. But it's easy to fall in love with an infant now because of experience. I can handle the 'unexpected' fast enough to realise how adorable little babies are! Best thing is, they do not reason with you even though their reasoning makes no sense sometimes. hehe. He "gooos" and "gaaas", asks me "how are you?" and replies "gooooood" when I ask him back. hehe. Other than being busy, it's fun.

As often as I reminiscise about days without kids, an immediate 'after-thought' speaks: "Is life not good now? We have AN entertaining us with things she says, and ER entertaining us with silly smiles and actions".

Life was good, better now.

We never know what the future holds. Mr Liow lost a colleague in the biking accident at Changi during New Year Day and they met just days before he passed on. I can only do what I hope will be best for those I love (and imperfectly because that what I am).

I don't know about tomorrow
I just live from day to day
And I don't borrow from its sunshine
For its skies may turn to gray
I don't worry o'er my future
For I know what Jesus said
And today He walks beside me
For He knows what lies ahead
Many things about tomorrow
I don't seem to under-understand
But I know who holds tomorrow
And I know who holds my hand

Delphin, the Multipurpose machine!

It's starting to show increasing value for the price we paid!

ER was fussing a while ago while I was clearing up BM's wastes in the toilet. I turned his cot mobile on to keep him entertained and he was, for a while, but started fussing again. It won't hurt for him to cry a little after whining (I predicted his whining will evolve into mild cries 10 mins later). Since it's going to take a while (say, 5-10 mins to throw and lay new papers), I let Delphin into their room to clean the air as well since I hardly get to clean that room properly because that is where the kids nap. I have time to clean the house only during their nap time on most days but then because they nap in their room, I didn't want to wake them up with the noise from cleaning.

Technically speaking, they have the dustiest room in the whole house.

By the time I was done and went back into the room, the boy was peacefully sleeping! He fell asleep all by himself! Or it could also be Delphin's 'breathing' that lulled him to sleep. In fact, the moment I turned Delphin on earlier, he stopped whining. That left me wondering if he would fall asleep by himself, and he did.

For the price that we paid to have Delphin work for us, I'm starting to 'see' returns more than the dust being drawn into the tub of water. hehe. Good news eh? hehe!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

More than 1 way to playing with a rubix cube

AN sure does use her brains.

She asked if Mr Liow would allow her to play with his rubix cube. He said no and asked if she knew how to do it.

She replied: "No." (that she didn't know how to put all the colours together) but continued:" then can i mess it up?"

Cheeky right?

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Rubbish Dump

Much as i want to do something about the cleanliness of our home, i have no time to.

ER had been fussing every hour or so last night and I'm dead tired now. Was hoping to steal a little rest here and there and hit back onto my pillow soon after AN left with Mr Liow. This little feverish tiger didn't feel too well and i woke up to rock him after 15mins of shut eye.

For the next 3hours, i had to hold him. He seems to be making full use of this privilege now that he's not well!

The floor is indescribably sticky. Its not just their pee stains. Bailey and Maen licked the whole floor, probably with the intention to save me the need to mop. This is day 3 since i last mopped the floor. I am hiding in the room coz its the least sticky.

The mirrors....there are prints all over. Been a month since i cleaned them but there weren't anything to clean before today. All of a sudden, stains emerged! The window grilles are dusty, as are the windows. There are thick layers of dust on furniture tops, and Mr Liow had to iron his own clothes. All these just because we were out yesterday and i skipped one day of cleaning.

Clothes pile up overnight especially with kids. Clothes plus wraps and blankies.

And the little one is calling for help now. He managed to play by himself for 15mins. Fever seems to have gotten better at 37°c and he doesn't feel that warm to touch now.

Bet I'll hv to leave cleaning till later again. Hope he'll get a better rest now that fever is leaving so that i can do some damage control.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Jabs

As expected, AN had problems waking up this morning and told me she didn't want to go to school, citing sleepyness. ~______~"

ER is due for his 3rd jab so i followed Mr Liow when he sent AN off to school. Bad move. AN threw a fit and the teacher had to tear her away from us. Sigh.

Waiting time at Kinderclinic was 3hrs long as usual but all worth it coz ER was seen by Dr Tan. Finally got an appointment for the next vaccination once done. No more walk-in and long waiting time!

We went over to my parents' place after lunch at Nex. ER was fine initially and even chuckled with little teasing by mum. I don't know what happened next but he started crying soon after i took him back coz he looked like he needed milk.

For the next 2 hours, he was uncontrollable. He sounded like he was crying in pain and couldn't be pacified much till Mr Liow carried him. We decided to pack mum's homecooked food and return home for dinner. ER actually cried all the way home and even while on his own bed.

Remembered Pam encouraged us to ask in the name of the Lord when we pray and by then, i was desperate. ER looked like he was in bad pain and my heart ached for him. He had been literally screaming for the past 2 hours and i had no idea why. So i prayed in the name of our Healer, for relief. I prayed for healing for Ethan, if that was what he needed. That minute i said Amen, ER started suckling and fell asleep the next second!

Thank you Jesus.

ER will hv a 5% chance of fever from the vaccination and i am ready to fight it with him. He was fine the past 2 jabs so i pray that he'll be fine this time as well.

It could have been pain at site of jab, pain somewhere else, blocked nose or discomfort from his impending fever that caused him to feel this upset.

For now, i'm just thankful he's peacefully resting after the traumatic crying he was went through a while ago.

Updated at 7:45am (13 Jan)
ER had fever last night and needed to be walked about on 2 separate occasions to feel better. Poor thing. AN woke up one of the 2 times to ask if ER was ok. sure hope so, soon.

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The Wedding

I can't post pictures of our gorgeous bride of last evening coz of the big limited space left on my loggers account but she really was! Am so happy for her. Sheryn has been a very good friend, one I've had for 18 years. I can't believe its been this long!

She's one of those friends whom you can sit with for hours without talking and not feel uncomfortable. And watching her dance through the door (yes she did, so cute!) yesterday, i can't help feeling moved. I would have cried if she entered accompanied by slow music.

Its always fun meeting the girls. The girls of our next generation enjoyed too and AN had fun laughing at little things Josh did. Thank God my mum had foresight and fed AN before we fetched her to the hotel, so i could allow her to play with the kids while we had dinner. While AN enjoyed herself with the kids, ER enjoyed attention from the adults.

Not to forget, Shuping was there too! Been more than 2 years since we met up. Must really meet again soon to catch up.

Dinner was served fast and we managed to leave at 10.45pm, before dessert though. AN had school early but Mr Liow took leave.

By the time i settled the kids down, it was still past midnight. AN knocked out the moment lights were switched off. ER couldn't sleep well coz his nose was blocked. It was worse than past few nights, poor boy. Was glad AN could sleep well though.

The next news we should be expecting this year will be more babies by shiyun, ting and maybe even Sheryn? The stock will be as busy this year helping God install more babies!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Efficiency is - doing only what benefits the organisation

"ABCD" organisation knew when we rented our home out in May 2008 (somehow...)and started taxing us at 10% of our Annual Valuation.

End of our latest lease was in March 2010 but they are still charging us 10% for 2011. When I called in, they asked if it was still being rented out (they didn't know that it's no longer being rented out wor...then how did they know in the first place when it was?).

Should we not be vigilant enough, we'd have paid the amount they asked for.

So we're supposed to apply for owner-occupier tax rates again and still pay the full 10% before they will refund us the difference by cheque.

They somehow know when they are supposed to collect more tax from us but do not know when they are not supposed to anymore. How efficient.

What naturally keeps me awake

ER's blocked nose is getting worse. I don't know if he got it from AN or is that infant congestion. Either way, he's having problems breathing.

He wakes up every hour to latch last night, for comfort I guess. And from near 4am, he couldn't sleep. he wasn't fussing though, but he was chatty.

Ooh...all the "goo-s" and "ga-s", his smiley eyes, his cheeky smile: those were what kept me awake. It's irresistible. The little boy is too cute to ignore. Hehe.

We chatted from 4am till about 5.30am and he got cranky after that. Understandably so, since he had been awake for 1 1/2 hr. I had to walk him to sleep since he didn't want to suckle. He's very UNLIKE AN in this. AN could sleep in no time whenever she latched on. No matter how early I wanted her to sleep in the past, all I had to do was latch her and she would be asleep in seconds. Not ER. Most times, he just wanted us to carry him to sleep. Nursing to sleep happens once in a while.

Having gotten not much sleep and to wake up by 6.30am to help AN prepare for school, I was dead tired. My body recovered once I woke up. AN went to school happily as usual (I tried to not pick on her refusal to finish her milk) and I went back to rest a little more.

Didn't expect that little shut-eye will take 3 hours. I even dreamt that I went out with Lishi. hehe. The next thing I know, I had 6 missed calls from my father and an sms from Mr Liow informing me that my family is looking for me. My dad called to inform me that my mum made lunch and he will be bringing it over to me shortly.

I am blessed. Can't be more thankful for my family. Days like these, I feel how perfect God has made my life to be. But then because of how I choose to respond to random events that happen each day, I end up with results of a less-than-perfect life. I should say, I had a perfect start this morning to the rest of today.

ER is whining again. Got to bath him now. It's Sheryn's wedding dinner tonight and the kids are coming with us. Can't wait to meet the pretty bride and share her special evening with her :)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Laugh or Cry?

After AN left for school at 7.15am, I sat down to record her time table, look through her school's calendar in details and was about to do some filing, when Mr Liow brought her back. His car couldn't start and he was waiting for his friend to come.

AN will not have time to eat in school, so I made her some milo. As it is on most mornings before school, she could only finish as much as 50mls. Didn't want to force her, so I finished the rest.

We heard ER crying and sweet jie jie AN ran into the room to pat him back to sleep while I was washing my hands. She ended up waking him with her endless yaking and the non-stop kissing on his cheeks. It's frustrating coz I was going to do housework after filing some papers.

ER started fussing as AN yakked on, and then he farted. AN was tickled but I was getting increasingly frustrated coz she couldn't stop talking and monkeying around. Without ER around, its cute. Not when she's waking him up.....

She started laughing hysterically while slapping her thighs: "Mummy, he woke himself up with his loud loud 'poot'. So funny!"


ER was totally up by then, and irritated. I must have been hiding my displeasure quite well, coz AN was still feeling ticklish. Sigh...there goes whatever time I have to do stuff. From 7.45am till now at 8.55am, I'm still trying to coax ER to sleep...


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Both kids down

They are still playing as usual but both are having blocked nose.

AN is recovering I think. Her mucus is thick. So is ER's but his blocked nose seemed worse last night.

AN showed signs of blocked nose since her 3rd day of school and has since passed it on to the little tiger boy.

Pray that it won't get any worse. come to think if it, ER's having it better. He's falling sick for the first time after 3 mths. AN first fell sick when she was less than 1 mth old. So pitiful...but she's come a long way. Jie jie can blow her nose now, so as long as the virus doesn't weaken her, it bothers her none.

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Vacuum cleaner investment

We had a Delphin sales person come over to our place yesterday while Mr Liow was away at his mum's. I watched a rainbow demo before and this machine is similar. It's no doubt cool, knowing the dust particles do not exit from the other end while the machine is at work, but both machines are costly! The Rainbow was abt $5k 4 years ago, and Delphin $3.5k.

Since Mr Liow wasn't around, I couldn't decide (if it was half that price, I'd be more willing). I die at the hands of sales people. The more persuasive they are, the less capable I am at rejecting. More so if the salesperson is friendly and nice.

She almost left when I told her I'd discuss with Mr Liow who came back right then. She spent another hour doing the demo and Mr Liow said "ok lor." after she was done and he got some questions answered.

We now have a dustbag vacuum cleaner, genie, the iecology, the irobot and now Delphin in the house, one more costly than the other.

Mr Liow said as long as I like it. He wanted to get me something most women like, for our anniversary but didn't coz he knew I didn't fancy diamonds. And he bought me the cleaner. Hehe. I think I have to redo my favourite-list. I'm moving into aunty-hood too soon!

I'm giving up the traditional dust bag machine with new bags and filter (self collect) for adoption. There's an odour when turned on even though the filter is new. I don't know how to get rid of that odour. Let me know if any of you are interested and can overlook the odour ya? iecology will go to my parents if they are interested. Genie probably to my aunt.

We're only keeping the robot and Delphin.

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Beck and call

I got a call at 10am in the morning and was told the cabinets will be coming at 2 pm. I will not be able to wait at home because I'd be fetching AN and even if I rushed back, it would have been near 3pm. She could have come down but she suggested: "Ask you father to go and wait for the cabinet so I don't have to go over. So troublesome."

Trouble? Ask MY father to go through this trouble for HER? She's no one to my father, for goodness sake!!

Delivery time got changed to 3pm, so I took AN and ER and rushed back home (with my father's help ultimately, and I didn't even ask for his help. That's what my parents will go through for us). I'm so super thankful that my parents, unlike some others, have always been supportive and tries their best to be flexible for US. And they never once expected anything in return, never in words, never in action.

AN fell asleep in the cab and staggered back home after alighting.

Then at 3.18pm, I got a call saying the cabinets will not be coming. She added: "It's a free service, so there's nothing we can do about it." I agree with that sentence. Under normal circumstances, I won't have blamed anyone ELSE because it's a favour and we appreciate help. But I can't bring myself to cool off, especially when this was caused by one who practises double standard.

We seriously are not that hard-up for a chest of drawers and some rubbish, are we?

But one good thing as a result of this was, AN went to nap by herself just now. I told her I had to wait for the movers to come with the cabinet and asked her to go sleep by herself first. She did :) yeah. Another step nearer to independance...can I accept that happening?

End of first school week!

Thursday (6.1.11)
Mum took AN home before dinner yesterday and brought us fried rice that she made. I'm so thankful for mum. She is as busy as us, if not busier, now that AN is at school.

seems like AN is really eating better now that she's in school. Teacher indicated on her parent-teacher communication book that she had both breakfast and lunch but no milk. Back at my parents's, she had almost 1 slice of bread but fell asleep while eating, leaving only an index-finger-sized portion. And this also marks the 1st time she slept without me by her side.

Mum said she was very well behaved, my aunt came to see AN yesterday and complimented her on behaving well too.

Friday (7.1.11)
It's finally Friday! AN has a hard time waking coz she sleeps after 11pm. I'll see what I can do to make her sleep earlier. Quite a feat coz flexibility is limited to when ER sleeps, or wakes. Many times we end up sleeping late coz ER needs attention and the longer he takes to be pacified, the later AN will be tucked in. She can't sleep till lights go out.

Surprisingly, she asked for milk this morning and finished it! I made her 100mls.

I didn't do well enough though :( She wanted to put her pants back on after toilet just before she went to school. I told her she didn't have to, because it was only a short distance to the sofa where her panty and school uniform was. She insisted on putting on her pants even when I could have dressed her for school and she started stomping again. We both got upset. I did as she wanted, to put her pants back on and took it off again. I was rough with her and she cried :(

This time I recovered soon enough to dispel the anger. We hugged and made peace, kissed goodbye and signed "I love you", but still, damage had been done :( Mr Liow smsed me saying AN cried and didn't want him to leave when they got to school. Was it because of the earlier episode?

I'm sure she'll be fine when activities start in a while, I hope.

Mr Liow's mum will be shifting her stuff over later. I wonder what time......Don't know how to call and confirm, as if everyone's required to be at her beck and call...was that not what she would have expected of anyone else if she had to wait them? To at least give a timing??? Double standard..

Hope to be able to go fetch AN today. My heart feels unsettled when I hear she's not happy :(

Updated @ 4:03pm
She came back a happy girl. Mum and I waited outside the classroom and coz the door was frosted glass, we could see some of the little girls standing against the door. We saw a little girl lean against the door, and then one more which I know was my baby girl. She's that petite and I recognise her bag and bottle. hehe. She was actually imitating her classmate who was leaning against the door before she did.

She happily came out when the teacher opened the door for another student whose mum rang the bell (I went knocking on the glass door when there was a door bell -_____-") She saw me and showed me a pieces of artwork in her hands that she said she didnt' make. The other 2 girls each had one with them as well. hmm...Not something she made, so what's it doing with her?

It was one of the teacher's last day and she had a farewell gift of sweets, and inside her bag was a weekly book of report. It records the activities she goes through in a week: art, chinese etc.

They are learning to draw lines: straight, horiontal, vertical, curved etc. That's to prep them to learn to write letters. I'm surprised. AN finished writing A-Z in both big and small caps before ER popped but she's stopped practising since then. Apparent the N2 students have not learn to write anything...?

Does anyone have any idea if montessori students will be able to fit into Primary school well? It seems they do not follow MOE curriculum. hmm..

What sets my heart at ease is knowing AN enjoys herself at school. hehe. That's what matters more at this age :)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Inspired thoughts

Read the blog of 2 of my buddies who are going through similar stages as I am now, and I feel overwhelmed by the many emotions as I learn to let go of AN little by little..

She's starting to enjoy school. At this point in time, being in school for only 4 days, she probably is still enjoying herself coz everything is new to her. I was expecting her to not take school as well as she is taking but I'm blessed that school seems like a 2nd home to her. she wakes up in the morning, lazy and sleepy. But when she's more awake, she thinks nothing of leaving my side as I dress her up for school. With a hug and a kiss, she leaves me happily.

I don't know how it's going to be like today. I had wanted to go over but it started raining heavily and I didn't want to subject ER to the weather, I had to stay home. I'm going to break my promise to her when I told her this morning that I'll be there to get her at 1.30pm. I pray she'll not be disappointed when she doesn't see me. My parents will go get her and unless she asks for me, mum will try get her to take her nap before bringing her back to me. We'll see how the weather's like before deciding.

She was not really well behaved at my parents' place yesterday. She asked for something that didn't exist and when told that we do not have that, she kept insisting that she wanted it. That was already trying my patience but I swallowed it and calmly told her that it didn't exist. Not there and then. My dad managed to dig something out according to her description and she accepted it (what my dad brought her wasn't something she's ever seen or played with before). I asked her to thank grandpa but she not only refused, she looked away and ignored me. I repeated myself a few more times, giving her the benefit of doubt that she probably didn't hear me and each time I repeated myself, I got louder. She continued to ignore me.

I got upset and reprimanded her. She continued to ignore me!! I told her to go away from me since she's not going to listen to me anymore. She did as told. -______-" She then started crying when I ignored her as well. I reminded her that she was supposed to thank grandpa for getting her something and for being stubborn, she was supposed to apologise.

She didn't.

I don't know for how long but she gradually stopped crying and starting playing with my mum. All while I was still fuming. I can't stop fuming and I don't know why! Mum then asked her to apologise to me but I couldn't bring myself to forgive her, yet. Mum cut an apple up and asked her to give me some. I continued to ignore her and she sadly ran back to popo telling her: "Mummy is still angry with me."

I kept telling myself to forget what happened earlier. It was not super terrible thing she did that I should get THAT upset (she did not thank my dad, that was all. Ok, she also threw tanthrums when not given what she wanted, and she ignored me when I spoke to her). But I couldn't make myself move to hug her and make peace that soon. Finally I did, and things were back to normal.

She actually obeyed me when I ask her to not come to me (since she thinks she didn't need me anymore). But when she apologised, I didn't accept it. Judy, please take note!

She's either becoming increasingly independant now, or fearful of me when I am angry. She doesn't come cling onto me crying and apologising now (because I ignored her too much?)

I'm missing my needy baby :( I actually miss her neediness!

Hugged her pillow and sniffed it hard this morning. I'm not used to not having her by my side when I lie down (back to nursing ER to sleep). I'm not used to not hearing her tell me: "Mummy, can you turn to me?" I'm not used to not having her stick to my back while we sleep. I'm not used to not feeling her presence near me! I think she's better at overcoming separation anxiety than I am.

And she just called from my mum's home. Mum had just gone to pick her up. I asked if she missed me. She said no and added: "I didn't cry today." She sounded happy. Told her I missed her and hugged her pillow as I nursed ER just now and she giggled. She said she will hug her pillow when she comes back later. Mum asked the teacher how things went this morning and the teacher said she was very well behaved. And she ate. Mum made lunch and AN wanted some. Mum's going to feed her.

Maybe I should not be in the picture all the time. I can't be with her every moment in her life.. She probably anticipates certain expectations I have of her and fears that she may not be able to meet my expectations. And she behaves unlike herself coz of that fear. I don't know.

Another mental note to myself: how I behave will affect how AN grows up. She's not the blur toddler anymore. She's a preschooler who watches and learns, listens and understands. Everything I say and do will result in a behaviour. Whether or not that behaviour is acceptable to me in return, it's got lots to do with myself!

I can't control who she learns from (people and family she comes in contact with) but my respond will largely affect her in how she responds to people as she grow up.

Dear Lord, please give me self control and the wisdom to be a good model for AN to follow. Whether or not I'm showing positiveness, she's going to learn. Lord, help me to display positiveness.

Teach me to be like you.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

School Day 3

It was a good school day. Mum and I took ER to bring the big girl back.

The door opened and she was sitting happily with the other kids, waiting to go home. I saw her waving her feet left and right and chatting with another girl. She said she wasn't chatting with anyone but, nevermind.

AN said she finished a bun for breakfast and her lunch of noodles. I'm quite doubtful about the bun but I think she ate at least a little coz she said there was "green and yellow things" inside. It said just "Steamed Bun" on the menu.

Teacher helped her scoop up food and she fed herself. She said the teacher fed "some other children".

They are still in the process of changing some activities in the time table and will pass us a copy when finalised. As of now I don't know what they do in school.

According to AN, it was colouring on Tuesday and "a fat fat girl with cheeks like this (puffs her cheeks up) came to snatch my colouring pencil", she said.

And it was painting on the remains of a toilet roll today.

She had milo before napping and then dinner at my parents' place. If she did honestly finish her lunch like she said, it would have been perfect.

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I miss Adrielle

As usual, she had no appetite for milk, so I did not insist. MR Liow suggested that she bring her cup of milk to drink in the car. I reminded her to have breakfast in school and she said ok. She finished bread for breakfast in school yesterday.

Am thankful I sent a happy girl off today, gave her a kiss and hug before she happily galloped off with MR Liow.

Right now as I'm writing this, I'm feeling emptiness. I miss my girl even though she'll only be away for half day. She said she cried ytd because she missed me too.

Need to doze a bit. ER woke up from 5am and wanted to chat. He's finally sleeping again at 8am now. Promised AN I'll pick her up this afternoon so I'll be going to my parents' place later after some housework and Baileys & Maen are fed.

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AN is sniffing

She's started sniffing last night before bedtime and it sounds like her nose is blocked as she's sleeping now. And she's only been in school 2 days.

Praying that she will not have it too hard.

Even ER is coughing a little. I should start kissing both of them very very often from now on. The thing about breastmilk is that once the mum sampled the virus, her body will produce the necessary antibodies for herself and they get passed down to her baby so her baby is protected too.

I had been warned that AN will fall sick often, after she starts going to school. Just pray she'll recover fast! And that ER will not catch anything from her.

P.s: I think ER is falling sick too. He's coughing and sniffing more now too. Sounds like bad news. Uh-oh....

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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Wrong move

So, I told AN to have her meals in school this morning before Mr Liow sent her there. It was not a cheerful goodbye and I felt bad.

Arrangement had been agreed upon, that my parents will pick her up and I'll 'collect' her from their place. But because of the earlier scolding she got from me and the guilt I felt for not sending her off happily, plus Mr Liow mentioned that she sobbed as he left her this morning, I decided to pick her up myself. I was worried she'd feel abandoned coz she got it from me and may think school is punishment.

She had breakfast at school though. She was supposed to have lunch and take her shower in school today.

But, I made these mistake of calling my parents before coming over. I told mum I wanted to be around to pick AN up coz mr liow told me she was sobbing when he left. Mum told dad panicked and disappeared from home.

Mum thought he was on his way to accompany me back to their place (my dad NEVER encouraged me to travel alone with the kids, since AN was an infant). 10mins later, mum called to tell me dad brought AN home, at 12pm -_____-" AN's school ends at 1.30pm.

Dad said he went to peep into the class after he heard from mum that she cried this morning and AN saw him. She started crying after that. Teacher said she didn't cry before that but too late, dad took her home.


I could feel myself getting increasingly upset. There I am trying to let go so AN can get used to school, there he went to take her away just because I said she cried.

Was glad I chose to swallow the frustration and calmly told him to let AN cry it out if she needed to because it is normal. He felt bad too coz he said teacher told him AN did not cry before that. He just didn't know how to react when AN saw him and started crying. The only thing he could do was to bring her back to their place.

We just have to try again with the lunch and bath tomorrow. Thank God mum made lunch for AN so she had porridge before dozing off till I arrived.

I pray that I'll learn to swallow my frustrations even if she chooses not to finish her milk tomorrow so that I can send her off happily to school.

My obssession over AN's eating habit

Just watch Mr Liow take AN off to school. The day didn't start right.

AN did not eat the WHOLE time she was at school yesterday. I did not insist she drink her milk yesterday in the morning because it was early and she was not used to having anything this early (6.40am). But she not only refused cake (she didn't even take a crumb of it!), she refused her lunch in school as well. And she was so tired she fell asleep on the way out for lunch and slept till 4pm.

We fed her some noodles after she woke up and she ate a little before telling me she had enough.

ENOUGH?? Not a single bit of food and after a few strands, she had enough?

My blood started boiling. I tried keeping it down and she managed to eat more with some chatting and jokes. I don't know if she really enjoys watching me blow but it seems she is more likely to do stuff, just to watch my reaction..

She didn't finish her noodles but it was better than none. By then it was 5pm.

All she had for dinner was a cup of milk and a few bits of ONE tiny McWing for supper. That was a mini sized portion of noodles, a cup of milk (200mls) and bites of chicken for the whole day. It's probably something another kid has for one meal...

I made her milk this morning again. This can not go on...She couldn't finish it as usual and seeing how she takes a sip and starts to freeze on the spot made me upset again. It took her 15mins, to drink 50mls of milk. 50 mls!!!!!! She's drinking like a NEWBORN!!

She's 12 kg now, on good days. On days she eats like a mouse, her weight drops. I have no idea how to relax. She's not growing....She's still fitting into clothes of a 2 years old and she's turning 4years old in April. She's half the size she's supposed to be! Can someone please tell me they know another living and healthy preschooler who is 4 years old but is as light and small as a 2 years old?

But no matter how angry I get, if she's not eating, she will not be. I have to understand that when one has no urge to eat, one just CANNOT eat.

And then the issue of anger comes in. I have to learn to manage my anger. More often than comfortable, my anger overwrites my logical reasoning. I get angry, AN feels my anger. But things do not move the direction it is supposed to, even with all these negative energy.

I did a search (now that AN is away at school and ER is sleeping) and found some pointers on managing anger that I'll try when my blood starts boiling the next time:
1. Take deep breathes and remind myself to relax
2. Excuse myself if necessary
3. Think about the problem, work out several possible reactions and choose one that will hurt AN least (or not at all if possible)

I did 'kill' the anger before it started yesterday in the morning when AN refused milk and when she couldn't finish her super late lunch. I can do it again! The evil voice tells me: "But if she doesn't eat, she will not grow. She's eaten nothing the whole half of the day!" I can reply that if I do not display anger, at the very least, I will be less likely to deal with another issue as a result of my display of anger: AN's anger management.

I don't want AN to grow up learning to be angry, learning to display anger like I am. And I realise I'm starting to behave increasingly like someone I hate to behave like in this area of anger...this is really bad influence. I'm using words and behaving nonsensical like her...I'm just stopping short of spouting words like "stupid" and "idiot".. (by the way, this same person thinks it's good training for the kids to be called "stupid" and "idiot". What nonsense?? Will I become like that in future?? PLEASE, NO!!!)

I have to manage my anger before I become like that, before I lose my senses and think it's even right to start physically or verbally abusing the little one I love. This anger thing has to stop.

Monday, January 3, 2011

London Toilet Roll

We were talking about toilet rolls when AN started singing...
"London toilet roll
London toilet roll
Toilet roll
Toilet roll
London toilet roll..."

She sings a song out of anything.

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"She's so steady"

This marks a new chapter in Adrielle's life: her first day of school and independence!

She woke up at 6.25am because I was not sleeping beside her and she came looking for me on the bed (she's been sleeping by herself on the mattress beside our bed for the past few days. I lie with her till she falls asleep.) I wasn't aware that it was almost time to wake up and asked her to come lie between Mr Liow and I, till MR Liow informed us that it was only 5 mins more to the alarm.

So, we all woke up (except ER), I made milk for AN which she didn't have appetite for at 6.40am in the morning and then we all dressed up to bring her to school.

She was very shy when we got there and was stuck to Mr Liow and I, one after another. The little girl who got into class right before we did (also named Adrielle!!!) was crying badly. AN kept staring at that Adrielle and she looked confused. We took AN around the class to while other kids were having breakfast. Teacher offered her some chiffon cake and milk but she refused to sit down and eat. She clung tightly to us, all the most after noticing a few other kids who came in were crying too. She didn't cry, but she was starting to look more and more frightened.

Mr Liow decided that it was time to leave her to the teacher so we told her we had to leave. She didn't insist we stay and when we asked her to take teacher Liana's hands, she did and was led away by her.

We then went to look for MIL to pass her dentures back to her. She forgot to bring it home after leaving our place (in anger) last night...Mr Liow fixed some of her stuff and then we brought the set of sound system that used to belong to us, to my parents' place.

While moving the speakers, Mr Liow and I decided to peep in to see how AN was adjusting. MR Liow was able to see more than I could because he was taller and the rest of the glass was frosted other than that area at his eye level. He said she appeared calm and was holding the hands of the other kids forming a circle. They were doing some activities.

A teacher noticed us peeping and opened the door. She almost asked for AN but we stopped her in time. We didn't want AN to be distracted. We asked how she was coping and the teacher said something that would have made any parents with kids in school for the first time, really really proud, and assured. She said: "Nicole? She's so steady! Is this her first time in school? First school?" It is indeed.

The teacher continued that they had been using AN as an example to the new students who were crying, or those crying not because it was their first day in school.

Aww....the little girl is no longer very little already. She's learning to be independant!

Mum and I went to pick her up after her school hours and the moment the door opened, she was all ready with her bag and bottle. She was all ready to leave -____-". Teacher said she didn't want lunch and didn't want to be bathed, so they did not insist.

They'd probably try again tomorrow.

First school day had been a success, something totally unexpected. We thought she'd cry and were praying that she will get used to going to school on her own soon. Let's see how it goes tomorrow.


ER at 3 months 13 days

While waiting for Mr Liow to call home, here's to record ER's growth:

He's 6.1kg now, me at 46.1kg. I have 1.1kg to pre-Ethan weight, 3.1kg to pre-Adrielle weight.

I'd be contented to go back to pre-Ethan weight. Going back to pre-Adrielle weight is bonus, pre-Adrielle SIZE will be a miracle.

Big Fight

On the 2nd day of the new year, there had been a big fight. First it was between my SIL and MIL who then came over to our place with her belongings (like she used to after a fight with SIL before we went to Tucson).

Then when Mr Liow tried to talk to her (he just wanted to help MIL see some facts), she flared up, and then left our home as well.

Mr Liow is out hoping to find her safely back at her own home now. It's AN's new school day tomorrow. We owe her one, for not making it memorable enough, or for making it too memorable...

People fight (Mr Liow and I argue, my mum and I, even AN is capable of arguing with me now). Why the need to walk out and leave? To make the other party feel guilty? Or is it pride?

Whatever it is, I just hope she's safe. No one is perfectly in the right all the time. I know, me included. Her too.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Leading by Example

My SIL is shifting and left her kids with us over the weekend.

The girls are older now. So different, and sensible. I find it a pleasure chatting with the older niece in fact. It's AN who had to be taught manner while playing with the girls. :(

Baileys and Maen loves them and at the girls' age now, I feel safe allowing them to interact under no supervision from me. I noticed hw the elder niece gives them belly rubs instead of chase them around the house like she used to when she was younger. Amazing how kids grow..

With Mr Liow's mum and the girls over, the house was livelier over this holiday. And I actually forgot to feed the furkids. The elder niece reminded me. But she accidentally added: "Popo (Mr Liow's mum) said she's not going too feed the dogs because you own them, you feed them." That reminded me, about how MY own mum NEVER failed to feed them when we stayed at their place for 3 mths after we came back. It's ok that MIL doesn't feed them. I don't expect her to. She is right, my dogs, my responsibilities. But imagine her telling the kid that. Teaching selfishness?

When they came over on Fri, she couldn't find some ingredients that the helper was supposed to have packed for her. she got very angry and started calling the helper "stupid" and blamed her for not putting the stuff in Mr Liow's car. The elder niece actually commented: "Poor M is going to get it again." The helper didn't come coz she was busy helping Mr Liow's sis pack, shift and clean the new house. IMO, pack your own stuff and stop blaming the helper for everything that went wrong! And don't bring your anger and rudeness into MY house! The poor helper must be up to her neck with the shift. Can't one do this little thing of packing by herself? By the way, I found what she thought the helper forgot. It was on the table! She just didn't see it...poor helper got scolded by her for nothing and I doubt she'll apologise to her.

We thought SIL wanted the kids home ytd, so we took them out before bringing them home. ER needed a diaper change and the odour from the trash in the babyroom was horribly strong. Mil was with me and she kept commenting on the odour. She got increasingly irritated as I changed ER. After I was done, we made our way to customer service to inform them so they could get a cleaner to empty the trash. The odour was indeed unbearable. The CS staff noted and started dialling (for housekeeping dept I guess) when MIL walked over and very agitatedly raised her voice at the girl saying in mandarin: "This is so unhygienic. It really stinks in there!" I was shocked, the girl was shocked. She didn't have to scold the poor girl. She sees nothing wrong in scolding anyone, and I mean anyone who doesn't agree with her.

From the shopping mall, MIL and kids said they knew their way home. On the way out of the carpark, the older niece made a mistake of suggesting a wrong direction and that took us on a much longer way to their new place. Mr Liow's mum got very frustrated and started commenting that Mr Liow should have turned right instead of left and kept repeating that the short distance had become so much longer.

Mr Liow got irritated with her endless blaming while he drove and reminded her that he didn't know the way coz he had never been to the new place. She then blamed the older girl for giving wrong directions. The younger one said what grandma said earlier: "should turn right, not left " and got told off by the grandma: "if you knew, say it earlier, it is too late now."

Precisely. If she herself knew the way like she said, she should have corrected the older niece right on the spot, not tell the older girl off after the mistake.

The thing was, no one else in the car was frustrated with the extra distance. She was the only one pointing one finger at the niece, and the other at Mr Liow for taking a longer way.

At my SIL's hm, MIL started making insensitive comments and getting touchy yet again, worrying about where she'd be sleeping coz reno is still on-going. SIL assured her that by that night (we went yesterday), the bedroom will be ready for sure. MIL then went around inspecting the house and questioning why works in kitchen is not completed, why this why that. SIL repeated countless times that the workers are rushing works at the rooms first so that everyone could sleep in peace soonest.

If my mum was this insensitive during our reno, I'd have blown up. At this point, I'm just reminded further how selfless my parents had been. They were in no hurry for us to shift out of their home and if they saw something that didn't look right, they helped us, not nag at us to make it right! She's just adding unnecessary stress to SIL...I could sense stress just by being IN the house, more so with those senseless comments and requests...

Mr Liow noticed that the rooms would probably not be ready that same night and asked his sis where her girls would have to sleep. SIL had no idea too and Mr Liow asked her why she didn't want the kids to stay one more night with us. She said MIL wanted them to go hm to her. She said her mum didn't want to trouble us. What trouble could there be (if MIL helps out a little with the extra housework? But no, she's a tai tai.)? We assured SIL that the girls were very well behaved and frankly, I enjoyed having the girls. I think Mr Liow too.

Is there a need to be so selfish, to decide for herself that we will not take the girls in just because she doesn't think we should or would. Ask us, don't decide for us and cause a possible misunderstanding between Mr Liow and his sis who may think we are that heartless to not help her when she needs our help.

She wonders aloud why the elder niece is so short tempered and calculative, then concludes that she's "mean, like her mum.". I've seen enough of her own short-temperedness, just these 3 days alone and for the past decade. We rarely see SIL losing her cool. MIL always says that she knows her own daughter better than Mr Liow knows his sis, that she's rotten to the core (when they quarrel) etc. We see a less than perfect side of her but rotten to the core? How rotten can she be if she makes plans for her kids' future, makes efforts to reserve speaking meanly to her mum when we are around, when she brings her mum with her on some of her holiday trips etc? I don't know my SIL well enough seriously.

Updated: Before I even finished writing this, MIL came back to our place after returning to his sis' place. She came armed with luggage and all. SIL had enough, as I will if I were her. And they got into an argument.

MIL started complaining about SIL the moment she arrived, hoping to get my agreement about what the quarrel was about. I do not agree with her at all frankly, with the rush in reno, purchasing of home accessories and work, the last SIL needs is MIL's ranting and picking on minor overlooks. I kept quiet coz Mr Liow will do the talking after a wedding dinner.

Guess what? She listened to nothing he said, insisted that he sided with his sister, claims that both her kids are useless and decided to leave our home after screaming at the top of her voice at past midnight that she had useless kids! She's trying to inform the whole neighbourhood!

Mr Liow could still keep his cool and ask her to stay. He was just staying facts and not chasing her away but she kept repeating that both him and his sis are useless, at the top of her voice!

I wonder where he gets his patience from...he's never that patient with me when we argue. Now he's patiently receiving her accusations...

By the way, she ridiculously insisted she was never wrong to call the maid or kids stupid because they need to learn to deal with it in future when people give them a hard time. Just weeks ago, she quarrellled with her own sis coz the sis commented that sgporeans are stupid. Just a sentence and she flared up.

I think Mr Liow's mum has many problems.. she has the rights to stepon the world but takes no criticism. Ci xi reincarnate.

With this happening, all the more I appreciate my own mum. We argued but my mum never raises her voice. She went out to cool off but never called me nasty names.

I gave my parents nothing but they never complained. Mil has so much but shouts to the world that SIL doesn't give enough.

I've run out of respect for her. Totally no more left.