Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers
Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers
Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Bible Verse of the Day

February 2011

You are currently browsing the monthly archive for February 2011.

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…or is it FOUR? ūüėÄ

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Couldn’t tell if Chip was happier or Ethan and Hannah were happier…when we brought Dale home a couple of days ago.¬† I can’t believe that we actually finished collecting 2 sets of ’em Guardian cards!

Dale won’t be lonely now, that’s for sure! :)

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Although it would have been a good 2 weeks more before Hannah officially turns two, we decided to have a birthday celebration for her in KL anyway.¬† This would also make it easier for the “Klang Valley” folks to attend the celebration.¬† And besides, we were planning a short vacation to KL anyways…one of the reasons being to visit that mecca of storage and organization solutions… :)

I was looking for a kid-friendly place to have the lunch celebration, and decided on¬†Marmalade in Bangsar Village II.¬†¬† I’d¬†read great reviews about this restaurant which offers healthy and delicious food and was looking forward to having lunch there.¬† ¬†Reservations¬†were made like 2 days before the event, and we were very pleased with experience.

The restaurant was abuzz with activity, and as we walked in, who should we bump into but Paik Ling and her family!  Good to meet her again after such a long time, and I was amazed by how much her boys have grown!

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And here, we have some random shots taken at lunch:

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Ethan *telling* us what he thinks of his Oreo milkshake.

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Enjoying Spaghetti Carbonara (for the first time!)

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Hannah: Love that dress you’re wearing, darlin’….where did you get it from?
Caitlynn: Ooohhh yes, I got it on sale at the *Princess Mall* last month!

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Contented in Pauline Korkor/Godma’s arms…

 

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Special yummy cookie treat for the birthday girl!¬† Unfortunately neither Ethan nor Hannah wanted to eat it.¬† Ethan said, “Mommy, if we eat it, the face will say, ‘Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!'”
So¬†Mommy had to eat it all on her own…

And what about the food at Marmalade?¬† I was in full blogger mode that day, as I tried to capture as many shots of the food as possible… For starters, we had Healthy Nachos, topped with delicious minced beef and melting cheese…really good, especially with the three different dips: guacamole, salsa and sour cream!

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We also ordered a plate of¬†fries served with aioli.¬† Surprisingly, Ethan was very adventurous, and loved the aioli dip (maybe because it didn’t have such a strong garlic taste as expected)!¬† Fries were done to perfection, not too oily and not too soggy.¬† Just the way I like it.

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Of course, the kids’ meals arrived first: Spaghetti Bolognese and Spaghetti Carbonara.

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Hannah didn’t want to eat much (perhaps she was excited about her birthday?), but Ethan ate quite a lot…maybe cuz he wanted to go play in the kids’ play area (which I must say is a welcome addition to any restaurant).¬† I was pretty surprised he was willing to¬†try the Spaghetti Carbonara that day too :)¬†

Drinks we ordered: Day Starter on the left and Paw Paw Passion (Papaya milkshake) on the right. 

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Sounds of Havana: a very colorful salad, which tasted absolutely delicious…and of course, healthy to boot! :)

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I had to order the Spaghetti Pesto with Chicken , which was highly recommended by Rinnah.  And I was glad I did.  The spaghetti was served perfectly al dente, and the combination of herbs and flavors infused into the pasta was simply sublime.

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Hubbs ordered¬†his all-time favorite, the¬†Spaghetti Aglio Olio.¬† Almost everyone who tasted it said it was better than that¬†Italian restaurant we like to frequent in KL.¬† Maybe because the aglio olio here is cooked in a more oriental¬†way.¬† Me?¬† I love both versions!¬† Yeah, I’m a pasta freak :)

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Moroccan Lamb Shank for the lamb lovers…the lamb was tender and very flavorful.¬† I didn’t try the brown rice served with it though, but those who did said it was¬†done just right, and didn’t taste anything like brown rice should…whatever that meant. LOL

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And finally, we ordered a plate of the Turkey Ham, Bacon and Mushroom Quiche.  I was incredibly grateful I had space in my tummy for this dish, because it was SO good!  Had been ages since I had quiche, so I relished and cherished every morsel.

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So after lunch, we headed back to Pauline’s house for cake cutting and presents.¬† This was the cake I baked for Hannah.¬† We brought it all the way from Penang, with me holding on to it in the car and then setting up the fondant pieces before the birthday song was sung.

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The ribbons at the side of the cake were not there initially.  I had to use them to salvage the cake the night before because it was falling apart.  Find out how I saved the cake here.

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Hannah’s surprised expression was priceless as she saw her favorite character on her cake: Baby Bop.¬† We had kept the cake a secret¬†from her all this time.¬† I had shown the cake decorations to Ethan but everytime Hannah was within earshot of us, he would cheekily say, “Hannah – nothing!! hehehe…”

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Ethan asked Hannah to say hi to Baby Bop, to which she happily said, “Hi Baby Bop!”, while waving her hand.

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Hannah was smiling all the way when we sang her the Happy Birthday song.  She even knew how to blow out the candle on cue, without getting saliva all over the cake!  Everyone was SO impressed :)

The boys tried to *help* her to cut the cake…

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…but ultimately, the birthday girl got to do the honors…

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Busy opening presents…

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…and being “creative” in using the presents…

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** I don’t have the heart to throw out the Baby Bop figurine yet.¬† Just the other day, Hannah asked to let her “touch Baby Bop”. SIGH.

Remember Ethan’s doggies?

Well, our little big boy has grown out of his doggie craze, so Hannah has naturally inherited all his doggies (and other soft toys).¬† Hannah especially loves the 2 doggies, Whiffer and Plopper, just like Ethan did.¬† But she takes it one step further, and even sings to them!¬† Her favorite song for the doggies is the “I Love You” song from Barney, complete with the hugging and kissing actions.

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Such is her devotion for her two doggies that we had to bring them along with us to KL when we were there for a vacation recently.

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Here’s something really odd that Hannah loves to do whenever she’s riding in the car.¬† As soon as she is seated comfortably in her car seat, she’ll ask for us to position the handle of the baby bag in such a way so that both her feet go through it, and when the handle is snugly around her ankles, she’ll lift the whole bag up!

Great workout for the quadriceps, I’d say!

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Our recent Chinese New Year celebration was nothing short of exciting.  As is usually the case, this year saw us travelling from Penang to Taiping on the eve, then to Ipoh on the 1st day, and then back to Taiping for a pit stop before heading back to Penang on the 3rd day of Chinese New Year.

Some picture-snapping moments from Taiping…

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Kor Kor with Ethan and Hannah…

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3-Pek-Kong (a.k.a. Granduncle Albert) with the kids…

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…and with Taiping Ah Ma…

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Photo session continued in Ipoh… with Ipoh Ah Ma…

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And with both Ipoh Ah Kong and Ah Ma:

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…and of course, with Mommy :)

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We took the opportunity to have a simple birthday celebration for Ethan in Ipoh while we were there too.  He requested for a really really simple chocolate cake with white wordings (yes, he was THAT specific!)

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And since cousin Collin was celebrating his birthday around the same time too, we decided to do a dual birthday celebration!

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Talk about a major cake overdose! ūüėõ¬† Obviously the kids didn’t mind…here they are, patiently waiting for me to cut the cake and serve them.

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And then it was presents time!  Gift exchanges are so much fun when accompanied by hugs and love!

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We arrived back in Penang on the 3rd day of Chinese New Year, which coincides with Ethan’s Chinese birthday (he was born on the 3rd day of the Lunar New Year).¬† We had yet another birthday celebration for Ethan, this time at home.¬† And since we could not get a freshly made cake from any cake shop we inquired from, and also, it was too late to bake a cake for him, Daddy very creatively volunteered to shape the cake we used during the Ipoh celebration into something new (perhaps he’d been watching too much of Top Chef!)…and voila!¬† Looks a bit like a piece from a jigsaw, if you ask me…

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Dinner was pizza delivered to our doorstep, on top of the cookies and mandarin oranges we had at home.¬† And here’s how you should eat a slice of pizza!

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Happy New Year everyone!  Hope the Year of the Rabbit will bring you boundless joy and blessings!

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Scrap Credits
Nature Walk QP from Digital Freebies

Sweet Serenity Numbers and elements from Shabby Princess Designs
 

Weight

At a recent visit to the doc’s for her cough and cold, she was weighed in at 12 kilos.¬†

Height

Slightly more than 82 cm

Teeth

She wouldn’t open up her mouth long enough for me to count accurately, but from what I could see/estimate, Hannah now has 16 teeth: 8¬†incisors (4 top and¬†4 bottom),¬†with¬†4 pramolars appearing on the right side (top and bottom) and left side (top and bottom); bottom left pramolar is taking its time to grow!; ¬†also¬†2 canines starting to appear at the top jaw, and¬†2 canines on the bottom jaw.

Motor Skills

  • Hannah can jump pretty well for her age, and for someone who is not even 2 years old, I would say that’s no mean feat!
  • She’s quite adept at climbing up the stairs by herself, and she even knows it’s safer to hold on to the railings.¬† But we still insist on holding her hand all the time, of course.
  • Also loves to run around, especially with her brother, but sometimes she’ll ask us to “carry” her.

Communication and Social Skills

  • Hannah is very very sociable and friendly, and loves to say “hello” or “hi” to everyone she meets.¬† She also loves to play with other kids and will take the initiative to initiate play.
  • She is also very inquisitive, and keeps asking “What’s that?” while pointing at things, or “Who’s that?” when she sees someone she doesn’t know.
  • Hannah can count 1-10 by rote.¬† In fact I am rather surprised by the accuracy in her pronunciation too.
  • She can recognize the color “yellow”, “pink”, “purple” and “orange”.
  • She can express her opinion, i.e. “don’t want”, or make a choice as to which one of 2 or 3 items offered to her she wants.
  • She can say “NO” very very clearly.
  • Sometimes she does throw her tantrums and tries to get her own way.¬† In many ways, Hannah is even more stubborn than Ethan was, and she does not respond with fear to the word “NO” when we say it.¬† However, we’re glad that she’s learning how to say “Sorry” from her brother, although it might take some time before she actually learns the meaning of it.
  • Hannah understands the meaning of *possession*, and can tell which things belong to her, to Ethan, to Mommy or Daddy.¬† When asked “Whose is this?”, she’ll respond “Hannah’s!”

Food and Feeding

A new snack that she absolutely loves is the arrowroot chips that are so popular during Chinese New Year.  I have to restrict her intake too, as this girl can eat this snack non-stop.

Hannah is still breastfed and she still asks for ‚Äúmilk‚ÄĚ especially at night.¬† Sometimes when she asks for ‚Äúmilk‚ÄĚ, I‚Äôll tell her Mommy does not have any more milk.¬† Her response would be to say “A bit left” (meaning there’s only a bit of milk left) or she would say, “Other side”.

Potty Training

She can successfully poo poo in the potty 95% of the time now, which means less dirty diapers for me to deal with!¬† Yay!!!¬† She’ll tell me she wants to “poopoo” and when I take her there, she’ll sit for a while, sometimes fiddling with a paper wipe.¬† At times, it will be a false alarm, but we’ve had success on most occassions.

As I did with Ethan, I’m putting Hannah straight on the adult toilet with a child toilet seat.¬† It makes the transition to the adult toilet seamless and it’s also less of a hassle to clean up.¬†

After she does her “business”, she always requests for me to “wash butt” for her.

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If anyone wants advice or information on breastfeeding, I will be more than willing to share my experiences and good practices.¬† I can tell you how to improve milk production, what to eat, how to start off on breastfeeding as soon as baby is born, and I can also offer tips on how to express milk if you are still working and want to feed your baby EBM.¬† If you need recommendations on a good breast pump, I can also give you my two cents’ worth, including where to buy and how much to expect, be it a manual pump or an electric one.¬† If you want my thoughts on which types of nursing pads to use, I’m your gal too.

But if you ask me how to wean baby from the breast, sorry…I’m stumped myself.

It was very hard for me to wean Ethan the last time, and now, I am facing an equally arduous task of weaning Hannah.¬† With Ethan, I used Bonjela, but since then I have heard conflicting opinions on how Bonjela might not be the safest best for kids.¬† If anyone has any insight on this, I’d be happy to find out more.

Anyway, I have been slowly telling Hannah that Mommy’s milk supply is running low.¬† Sometimes when she asks for milk, I’d tell her, “You just had some milk Hannah.¬† And anyway, Mommy has very little milk left.¬† Only a bit milk left, baby.”

She’ll look at me pleadingly with those big brown eyes of hers and say, “A bit milk!” and position herself for a feed.¬† Talk about persistence.

Sometimes after a feed, she’ll tell me “Milk finish!”

I’ll then ask her, “Do you want more milk in your cup?”

She’ll nod and say, “Yellow cup!”

So now when she wants to be breastfed, she’ll say, “A bit milk!” or “A bit left!”, or depending on the situation, she’ll sometimes say, “Other side!”

Yes, as you can see, I have no idea how to wean her yet.¬† I’m praying she’ll wean herself off on her own…anyone experienced that before?

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My little boy turned FIVE on January 31st recently.¬† And I still can’t believe how much he has grown!¬† I look at pictures of him from a year ago, and the difference is so vast!¬† He has grown physically, mentally and spiritually, and I can’t even begin to express how proud I am of him.

I could tell he was really looking forward to turning five.¬† Before, he refers to himself as a “medium boy” but he tells us that once he turns five, he is a “BIG boy” :)

So where did we take our big boy for his birthday?  After we picked him up from school, we went to one of our favorite Japanese restaurants for lunch as a family.  Then we headed to Golden Sands Hotel in Batu Ferringhi, where there was a kids activity center called AdventureZone.  Admission was only RM20++ per child (since it was a weekday), and adults need not pay if accompanying the kids.

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AdventureZone had something like an obstacle course for the kids, and gigantic slides that were NOT for the faint-hearted.  See how scary those slides looked?  We only went on the colorful one and the blue one.

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For Hannah, there was a little play area specially designed for kids aged 4 and below.

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But of course, she wanted to do whatever her brother did…

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Actually we were allowed a duration of 2 hours in AdventureZone,¬†but the kids were very reluctant to leave…in the end, we left after spending about 2.5 hours there.

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AdventureZone certainly tired us all out, for not only were the kids exhausted, we adults also had a good workout chasing after the kids.¬† Errr…. well maybe it was just the adults who were exhausted…

One thing’s for sure though, we sure worked up a HUGE appetite and we headed for dinner at Chili’s in Gurney Plaza.

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Birthday boy making like a “moose” when I asked him to pose for a picture…

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And how old are you now, Ethan?

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Because it was his birthday, Ethan was given a complimentary chocolate brownie sundae, complete with a candle, and the crew sang him a birthday song too!

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And then later that night, he opened up his presents from us.

This one’s from Hannah…

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…and this one’s from Daddy and Mommy.¬† We gave him something he had been hinting he wanted for the past month.¬† Ethan is very interested in all things planets, outer space, solar system, and the Earth.¬† And his expression was simply priceless when he unwrapped¬†the gift from us.

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“Wow!!!¬† It’s the PLANET thing!!!” :)

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Happy Birthday Ethan!¬† You’re a BIG boy at 5 now! :)

The day Ethan had been looking forward to finally arrived.  We had wanted to have his birthday celebration in school on his actual birthday on January 31st, but one of his teachers would not be around then, so we decided to have it the Friday before his birthday, i.e. on the 28th.

This time round, we bought the party gift packs well in advance, and I already had them packed up days before the event.  Ethan had wanted a Mickey Mouse themed party, so we got stationery sets according to theme and placed them in party packs.  Ethan wanted party hats too, so we got some to match as well.

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There was a reason we didn’t put any edibles in the party pack.¬† All the candies, chocolates and sweets were going into this pi√Īata!

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I spent days (and nights) making this pi√Īata, and yes…Ethan specifically wanted to have one at his celebration.¬† Initially I planned on making a pi√Īata where the kids would take turns to hit it till it broke, but decided instead on making a pull-string pi√Īata.¬† It was a less violent alternative to the pi√Īata game, and the kids would not be *tormented* by the fact that they were hitting their favorite characters on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse…(well, that and also because my balloon pi√Īata burst the first time I set it up. LOL)

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Anyway, this Mickey Mouse birthday cake pull-string pi√Īata had a trapdoor underneath the bottom layer, and I fixed the ribbons in such a way that only one ribbon would open the trapdoor, releasing all the goodies.

I managed to keep the pi√Īata a surprise from Ethan until the day of his birthday celebration, and he was thrilled to see it that morning.¬† Made my day when he exclaimed that he really loved the pi√Īata, and that it was beautiful! :)

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So Pete and I arrived in his school and brought all the stuff up to his classroom.  First his teacher requested Ethan to pass the party hats round.

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And then it was birthday cake time.  Ethan had also spelled out exactly how he wanted his cake, and this year, it was my utmost pleasure to be able to bake and make the cake for him.

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As soon as the cake was put on the table, 21 pairs of little feet rushed to the table to take a look at the cake.

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And someone’s party hat very nearly fell into the cake…

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We sang Happy Birthday in English, Mandarin and BM, and then Ethan blew the candle and cut the cake.

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I was so touched when a few kids came to ask me for second helpings of the cake :)

Every child that is celebrating his/her birthday will get to sit in the teacher’s chair and give out party packs, and that’s exactly what Ethan got to do.¬† Look how happy he is…

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The final part of the birthday celebration was the pi√Īata game.¬† Daddy had to stand on a chair and hold it up for the entire duration of the game.¬† After the teacher had explained the rules, the kids each took turns to pull on a ribbon.

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And here’s the one who managed to yank open the trap door!¬†

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Unfortunately somehow the candy and goodies got stuck in the trapdoor and I had to manually jiggle it so everything would tumble down.

And as soon as the goodies came tumbling down, sheer havoc ensued as all the kids rushed to claim whatever they could get.

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Here’s Ethan with whatever goodies he could get…

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… and the pi√Īata that (thankfully) stayed intact during the game, finally fell apart when the party was over!

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Chinese New Year is upon us again, and as we completed our usual round of shopping, we included a box of Mandarin oranges too.¬† While Mommy doesn’t really care much about eating Mandarins (for fear of getting a sore throat), our little Hannah proved that she’s Daddy’s little girl when she shares her love for Mandarins with her Daddy.

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She would ask for “orange” in such a sweet way, it really takes a LOT of willpower to say no.¬† Sometimes she will even choose an orange on her own and ask to “share with Daddy”.¬† Daddy will peel the orange and make sure it does not have any seeds before giving a small piece to Hannah to feed herself.

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Such is the determination of our little almost-two-year-old girl.

I’ve had to limit her intake of Mandarins though, and thankfully she does obey us when we put our foot down.¬† Unfortunately, she caught a cough today and will be off Mandarins till she’s better.

But don’t you think the sight of Daddy sharing an orange with little Hannah is adorable beyond words? :)

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