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Bible Verse of the Day

April 2012

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Ethan has been complaining that the playdough I have been making is becoming too crumbly.  Sometimes he will say it’s too soft!

Well, that’s when I chanced upon a very interesting Playdough recipe from How Does She?.  It claimed to produce the squishiest Playdough ever.

And I couldn’t wait to try it out.

This recipe had one ingredient I did not have in my original Playdough recipe, and that’s cream of tartar.  Cream of tartar helps to smoothen the texture of mixtures in baking and cooking, so I assume that was the secret ingredient.

With this new recipe, the kids could also choose their Playdough color, which added to the excitement.

You will need:

1 cup flour

1 cup water

1/4 cup salt

2 tsp. cream of tartar

1 Tbls. vegetable oil

Food coloring (I used 4 drops, or mix two colors to make a new color!)

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How to do it: Just mix everything together in a pot and stir well.  Cook it over medium heat on the stove, stirring constantly till it thickens and forms a Playdough paste-like mixture.  It’s all edible so it doesn’t matter if you use your good ol’ cooking pot.

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Remove from the pot and place on a plate to cool down.  My kids wanted neon blue for the first batch, so that’s what they got.

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Now, let it cool down for about 10-15 minutes and knead it to the consistency you like.  It is absolutely SQUISHY and SOFT and kids just love to work with it.

Ethan happily announced, “Mommy, this Playdough is WAY better than the one you made the last time!”  :)

I had some flour left, so I made another small batch of orange playdough.

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Guaranteed smiles, guaranteed fun!

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Going crazy with creativity, and the kids will TOTALLY, absolutely LOVE you for it! 😀

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Happy weekend, everyone!! 😀

It’s inevitable. We all know it is.

It’s merely a matter of when.
And Ethan is as excited as ever…for whatever reason, I have absolutely no clue.
He has, on occasion, in an ecstatic manner, announced, “Mommy, I think my tooth is wiggling! Come check and see!”

Of course, they have all been false alarm after false alarm.  But we know the day will come when we will see a fallen tooth.

And it could be any day now.  Or week….. or month.

So.

To prepare ourselves for that momentous occasion, I decided to get a Tooth Fairy Pouch ready for him.  Ethan knows all about the “Tooth Fairy” (although he did ask rather skeptically, “Mommy, how will the Tooth Fairy know where to get the tooth?”)

Anyways, it’s all for fun…and my googling led me to a site that provided instructions on how to make/sew my own tooth fairy pouch!  Very very cool.  Hey, I only had a small plastic box when I was a little girl, ya know…

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It was also something Ethan could relate to at some level, because he told me a classmate of his brings a tooth pouch to school in case her tooth dropped in school.

I got this done in about an hour (including kid interruption time) and well, now we are *prepared* :)

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reason

Hannah has a habit of biting on straws when she drinks from them.  Obviously the straw will become flat and eventually she won’t be able to drink from it anymore.

This conversation took place just now when I was helping her “unflatten” her straw from her Vitagen drink.

“Mommy, I cannot drink from the straw…”
“Here, let me help you…now Hannah, you need to remember to try not to bite on the straw when you drink, okay?”
“But…but….”
“..otherwise the straw will go flat and you won’t be able to drink from it anymore…”
“But Mommy…I cannot!  My teeth are in the way!”

Priceless reasoning?  You bet. 😀

**By the way, I have no idea where she learnt how to pose like that.  She just wanted a picture with Ronald McDonald and came up with it herself!***

Hannah recovered from her recent case of HFMD within 4-5 days.  However, she could not yet go back to school this week, because unfortunately there were several other cases of the HFMD reported amongst her classmates.  So the school decided to close her class for the week.

To keep the kids *occupied* at home, her class teachers prepared some *work* for them to complete at home.

What?  Work?  Homework?  At her age?

Well, it was more like arts and craft stuff for her to have fun, but Hannah was very eager to do her *homework*, because she always sees Ethan doing some homework, when she has none.

So yesterday morning, I guided her in her *homework*, and we had so much fun too!  See how she would smile and pose for the camera? :)

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Well, first of all, it was a tough battle getting any food at all into her body, let alone medicine.  She kept on wailing in pain when she saw me bringing the oral gel to apply in her mouth, and refused all forms of food too, including those she loved.

On Friday, the day after she was diagnosed with HFMD, I told Hannah I was taking her to the grocery store for a quick trip to get some stuff, among others, yogurt.  She was interested, of course…and while we were there, she personally requested for jelly, so I bought her 2 small tubs, which she happily ate, to my delight!

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She would only drink a bit of Milo and milk and nothing else, however.  She looked very weak, which added to my distress.

The next day, she would not eat anything for lunch, none of the soft “pau” and none of her favorite fish balls.  It was worrying.

Then I suggested we make some milkshake, with some ice cream and milk.  And I offered to let her shake the shaker.  Her eyes lit up in excitement and she eagerly participated in the making of the milkshake.  And to my utmost relief, she drank the entire cup of milkshake…

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She even asked for a second cup!  She complained of slight pain while drinking though, but persevered throughout.  I let her use a straw, which I think she finds easier on the ulcers in her mouth.

That evening, we went out for dinner at Old Town.  My Mom was around, so she was also eager to make sure that Hannah ate something, at least.

While we ordered the food and as the food was served, Hannah was busy scribbling on her paper, oblivious to her surroundings.  I then decided to order ice kacang instead of my usual teh tarik.  And while I was halfway eating my meal, Hannah suddenly looked up and spotted my bowl of “pink ice”.  She immediately asked, “Mommy, what’s that?”  and came over to have a look.

I asked if she would like a taste, and she did!  But she winced in pain a little, and I thought she would not want anymore.

But she asked for more.

Soon my girl was feeding herself from my bowl of ice kacang, leaving only the red beans for me!

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What was even more surprising was that in between those spoonfuls of ice kacang, Hannah asked to eat the chicken koay teow!  And she finished about 3-4 small bowls all on her own!

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Her appetite is surely returning, yay!!!  And I pray that she will only get better and better from now on…

So yeah, caring for a sick kid ain’t easy, but loving her is absolutely rewarding.

Tonight as I held her in my arms to sleep, she smiled and said, “Mommy is my VERY best friend!” :)

It started with normal flu-like symptoms and then just 2 nights ago, Hannah had a fever of up to 38.6ºC.  Her fever subsided after 2 doses of fever medicine over that night and in the morning and we thought it was all going to get better soon.

Then suddenly Hannah complained of pain in her mouth, and to my horror, I discovered an ulcer just behind her lower lip.  Thinking (and hoping) it was just a one-off, I advised her to drink lots of water.

Unfortunately that evening, I checked her mouth again, and discovered more whitish spots, on her tongue and at the back of her throat.  She was very irritable and it was a good thing I still had some Daktarin Oral Gel, so I applied that to her mouth and it gave her some comfort.

Another disturbing finding was that I noticed some isolated red spots on her palms, and while she didn’t complain much, I knew I had to take her to the doctor’s the next day.

So this morning, the doctor confirmed my worst fears.  Hannah was down with Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD).  He prescribed the same oral gel to be applied, some Vitamin C, antihistamine and a diluted Potassium Permanganate bath soaking solution for the lesions.

She’s very irritable now and can hardly eat anything, let alone drink much.  Tried ice cream just now, but she screamed out in pain, poor girl.

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Thankfully, she finished the lollipop from the doctor and a little bit of Old Town roti bakar.  Still, she cries and whines ever so often now, it’s so unlike her.

…but still can give a cheeky pose like this…

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Here’s a sneak of the spots on her hands:

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So she needs to steer clear of school for the next few days, and Ethan will need to be monitored closely as well, since incubation period is about a week.  I have given Ethan strict orders not to kiss Hannah or share utensils with her.

Adults can contract this virus too, but the majority of them would act only as carriers, without displaying any symptoms.  We’re praying it won’t get any more serious than this!

Get well soon, baby!

A few days before Easter last week, I decided to try out a craft idea I saw on the internet recently.  I could not get the Easter Egg Garland out of my head and since I had all the *ingredients* ready, I roped in the kids to give it a go.

I made the starch mixture about an hour before craft time, to allow it to cool down, and then proceeded to demonstrate to the kids.  Just look at them having a blast.

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It turned out to be rather goo-ey and sticky, but I reassured them that it’s okay and they could wash their hands afterward.  Ethan wanted to do everything himself, but Hannah asked for my help.

This is Ethan’s first attempt…a little bit loose on the winding, and he decided to redo the whole thing again later.

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…and the finished product, all being air-dried.

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The big one is the one I made.. LOL.

Unfortunately though, the 2 smaller ones’ balloons shrank before the threads could properly dry out, so we could not get a nice egg-like shape.

The next day, I removed the balloons from the structure and the kids were overjoyed with their creations.

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There was a problem with mine though; I found it very difficult to remove the balloon from inside.  Perhaps there was too much glue stuck on it. :(

carwashScrap Credits
Romantic Spring Part 1 Papers from Noshay Designs & Manue Design
Template 225 from Simply Yin
So Much Fun Wordart from Studio Bethany

Last weekend, Daddy was *in a way* forced to go to the automated car wash because his newly-washed car had been “decorated” with purplish splats from a tree whose shade the car was under.  It was also the first time Hannah had been in an automated car wash.  Ethan had been to one before, but it was a long time ago, and it was his first time together with his sister.

Naturally, the kids were fascinated.  They squealed in delight as the “uncle” sprayed water on the car first and then they giggled happily as soap was then sprayed on the car and scrubbed all over.  The look of anticipation and excitement as the car moved through the washer and gigantic bristles was simply priceless.

Both kids agreed that we should do this more often.

…which was exactly what I did just yesterday, this time with my car!  :)

Alrighty then…I’m continuing the recap of our Singapore trip last December.  Sorry, been a long while and it has been in the back burner.  But I haven’t totally forgotten about it…

Anyways…

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On Day 4 of our trip, we were scheduled to travel from Traders Hotel near Orchard Rd to Sentosa Island.  We managed to squeeze in a wee bit of time in the morning to have brunch at Food Opera at ION Orchard, which is a food court.

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Hannah’s favorite food while in Singapore: fish balls!!

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We took the hotel shuttle to Orchard Rd, but since the timing was not convenient for the “going back”, we decided to take a walk back to the hotel.

The stroll turned out to be a really really vigorous brisk walk all the way back, because we had to make it back by 1:00p.m. for checkout.  Coupled with the fact that I virtually carried Hannah all the way back, you can imagine how tired my legs were at that point (all ready for a massage if I had the opportunity to).

In view of convenience, we decided to take a cab to Sentosa direct from the hotel, which turned out to be a really good idea, because we made it there in no time at all, and the cab fare was very reasonable too!

Because we were still a little early for checking in, we decided to leave our bags at the concierge till check-in time.  Here are some pictures of the kids, while waiting for me as I was talking to the hotel reception folks.

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We then decided to walked around a bit.  Actually, we kinda wanted to tire the kids out so they would take a nap afterward.

That plan backfired big time of course.

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ethansmiling

There’s no hard and fast rule about when and how to toilet train a child, but experts say that if the child is ready, half the battle is won.  Some people choose to *make* the child ready by programming them to go potty from the onstart, but I was of the *other* school of thought and only began starting Ethan on toilet training after he turned 3.

Yes, you may have noticed that I hardly blogged about toilet training because I wanted it to happen naturally, or so I thought.  I also didn’t wanna jinx the process by blogging about it and then having to retract whatever I had written.  You could say that I wanted to wait till the entire process was completed before I wrote about it.

I’m extremely proud of my little boy … now my little man.  Although it was a process that took us 3 years to complete, I’m so happy that through it all, he feels a sense of achievement in what he is doing.  The initial struggle has been well worth it.

Because once it happens, it just does.

In the Beginning

Ethan was able to let us know when he wanted to poopoo when he was about 2+, and that helped loads.  But the peepee portion was the one that was eluding us.  I tried taking him to the toilet every now and then, but I could tell he was not ready.  Even though he was in cloth diapers then, which were supposed to speed up toilet training, he just wasn’t ready.

We had a few successes during our US relocation, as sometimes he would peepee successfully when we take him to the toilet.

At other times, though, he just wasn’t interested.

So we decided to go cold turkey and put him in underpants.  But even then, he would not feel uncomfortable when he had small accidents.  Time and again, we went back to square one, and we were not going anywhere.  I tried sticker charts (1 sticker for a successful peepee and 2 for a successful poopoo).  It worked for a while but then the novelty wore off and he would go back to wearing his pull-ups.

I admit I did worry a little as to when he would be toilet-trained, but then I kept reminding myself that there weren’t any teenagers I knew who weren’t toilet-trained, so I knew the day he would be completely trained would come some day.  The question is just when.

Admittedly, it’s difficult when we were in the minority.  When people around you tell you about their kids who are toilet-trained since 2, you just have to learn to smile and say, “He’ll be ready soon.”

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