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Bible Verse of the Day

Vacation

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We had planned on going to Six Flags New England after lunch, when the accident happened.  And when we were done in Urgent Care, it was already about 4:00p.m.  Pete and I were ready to go back home to rest, but then Ethan and Hannah asked, “Mommy, Daddy, are we going to see our surprise now?”

You see, we had told them both that we would be taking them for a surprise that day.  They remembered.

So I checked with the nurse and doctor and Hannah got the go-ahead, with the caveat to avoid getting the wound wet.  So we made the 1.5 hour drive to Agawam, MA for our first visit to Six Flags.

We had gotten season passes to the theme park, so we’ll definitely make a few more trips there before we leave for Malaysia.  Hannah took a quick power nap on the way there, but was all excitement as we arrived.  Unfortunately we had to queue up to change our printed season passes to photo-ID ones, and that took about 30 minutes or so, a LOOONG wait for people with kids, let me tell ya.

Here are some of our pictures.  Because Ethan and Hannah wanted to go on ride after ride, Pete had to take them on those rides when I had to breastfeed Emma or change her and then I would meet them at a later time somewhere.  On rides that the kids had to be accompanied by an adult, we had to make use of the parent swap, where either Pete or I would ride with one kid first and then subsequently, we can ride with the other kid without having to queue up again.

It was quite an experience being in a theme park with three kids now, especially also since Emma chose that period of time to poop a few times!

It got colder in the night, and I could not believe that we actually stayed up till park closure at 9:00p.m.  Well, we will definitely be back! 😀

The kids are already requesting to go back the next day itself! LOL

Hope to get more pictures during our next visit!

 

Last week, we made a quick trip to New York and back.  The primary reason for this trip was to get Emma’s birth registration and Malaysian passport done at the Consulate General of Malaysia.  Previously for Hannah’s case when she was born in California, we did not need to make the trip to the Consulate General of Malaysia in LA, and we only needed to Fedex all the necessary documents.

However, now that Emma was born in the East Coast, the rules for birth registration at the Consulate General in New York were different.  Not only did the Consulate General require the baby to be physically present at the point of birth registration, submission could only be done from 9:30a.m. – 12:00noon.  Same-day collection would only be guaranteed if we submit the documentation at 9:30a.m. in the morning, so in order to comply with that and not have to wait to collect the stuff a day later, we decided to go to New York on Thursday, stay the night and then submit the registration early Friday morning.

We left a little later than planned on Thursday morning (what’s new?), and while Emma was wide awake when we drove off, she fell asleep a few minutes later.

Hannah and Ethan were as excited as ever about our trip.  Here’s Hannah showing you how happy she is…You would know by now who’s the one who’s ever willing to pose for the camera and who’s just the opposite. 😛

Emma was dozing away beautifully and only woke up after we had our lunch; we stopped at Subway in Rocky Hill, Connecticut before heading on towards The Big Apple.

Traffic was unbelievably heavy on a week day, and even heavier when we arrived in NYC.  We drove straight towards the Financial District and parked our car near the Staten Island Ferry Terminal.

There wasn’t a long wait thankfully, and we boarded the ferry not long after.  Emma was quite fidgety at that time, and we soon found out why: she pooped while we were on the ferry!

Pete managed to take the kids up to the deck to get a closer look at the Statue of Liberty though.  It was rather cloudy that day but the kids just loved the ferry ride.

Upon arrival at Staten Island we took the next ferry back to Manhattan.  On the return ferry, and after changing Emma, I put her in a baby sling, and took her up to the deck for about a minute or two.  She was still really restless, even though I had fed her, and even when we put her in the stroller and pushed her out from the ferry.  In fact, Emma only settled down and fell asleep in the car, as we made our way to our hotel.

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When life gives you lemons, go make some lemonade, so the saying goes.  And when life gives you snow, you smile, and make work seem like play!

Last Saturday morning, we awoke to a blanket of snow covering the landscape.  The weather forecast had been true to the dot and it had snowed through the night.  In fact, it was still snowing in the morning, and inevitably, our car was also covered with snow.

It was a good thing though that Pete had switched our initial minivan to a medium-sized car, so there wasn’t so much snow to clear off the car, but Ethan and Hannah were only more than willing to help!  It was a brand new experience for them, and c’mon, which kid would pass on an opportunity to play with snow?

The snow has all melted since that day, and the weather is slightly warmer now (i.e. 10-12ºC), however we have been told by the locals that it typically does not snow till January.  Would we be looking at colder days and nights ahead?  Would the kids have enough snow for a snowman?  Will we be having a white Christmas this year?

Only time will tell… :)

It has been slightly more than a week since we arrived in Massachusetts, and I’m pleased to note that the worst of jet lags has been over and done with.  In the first couple of days, both kids were “operating” at odd hours; i.e. when one slept, the other was wide awake and vice versa.  This had resulted in very tiring days, but now they are more or less accustomed to the time zones, and wake up at appropriate times in the mornings, with no afternoon naps and sleep at about 9p.m. or 10p.m. each night.  Trying to get them to sleep earlier though.

However, since our shipment from Malaysia has not arrived because we have not moved into our permanent apartment yet, the kids are mostly entertainment-less in our temporary hotel: no toys, no books.  They only have several Lego blocks we brought along and some McDonald’s toys to occupy themselves with.

I could tell they were bored.

So one of the mornings, when it was nice and warm, I decided to take them leaf-hunting, for a simple project I had in mind.  It was the tail-end of Fall and the beginning of the cold winter season.

We picked some pretty leaves in golden, red and yellow hues…

The plan was to pick 2-3 leaves each, but we ended up with so many!  The pretty leaves were so hard to resist, and the kids had a lot of fun too!

Then I had them write their names on some Christmas cards I had brought along, and also decorate them.

Finally, they added one of the leaves they had collected as a finishing touch, and put it in the envelopes.

Now we just need to find out where the nearest postal office is, or mailbox…so that we can send those cards out! 😀

Those who read my personal blog and follow me on Facebook and Twitter would have already known that we have touched down safely in Marlborough, Massachusetts, in the United States.  This would be our home for the next several months.

I still can’t believe we’re here though.  There were many obstacles along the way which we had to overcome, tired though we may be; but we eventually did.

Well, first of all, the packing and shipping was a big rush given the short timeframe, so undeniably, there were many late nights, with insufficient sleep.  Our flight out from Penang to Hong Kong on November 17th was at 7:40a.m. in the morning, and we were expecting our cab to arrive at 6:00a.m.  With the last minute packup and check of our home before we left, we had to wake up at the ungodly hour of 4:00a.m.!  I only went to bed at close to 2:00a.m.

Well, we made it to the airport on time though :) – and although the check-in officer took a LOOOOOOOONG time to get our boarding passes ready, we boarded on time and were well on our way to Hong Kong.

Our first connection to Hong Kong was a relatively short one, and the kids were not tired at all initially.  Hannah fell asleep towards the end of that flight, but only for a while.  The child’s meal served to the kids were excellent, way better than the adults’; in fact a little too much for little tummies to handle.

We only had about 2 hours before our next flight out from Hong Kong to San Francisco, and that precious time was cut short because there were some issues at the transfer counter (we stopped by to request for seats together on our US domestic flights, but wasted time there because the Hong Kong staff could not do anything about it), and also some delays at the security checkpoint.

Long story short, when we arrived at the airport lounge, we only had very little time to relax.  However, we still managed to take quick showers (very glad we did because it was invigorating, and we definitely needed that for the next long-haul flight).

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Last week, we made a really quick getaway to KL on Wednesday afternoon and were back in Penang the following night.  We had an important and urgent “mission to accomplish” which was time-sensitive, and that was the only slot we could manage.  So it was a tiring trip, but still we managed to squeeze in many happy (and funny) moments.

This was the spectacular view from our room in Traders Hotel.  It was a pretty sight to behold, especially at night when we could see colorful fountains at KLCC too.

The hotel arranged for a complimentary sofa bed, complete with bed linens, pillows and blanket for Ethan, and he enjoyed his bed for the night!

 

I’m so proud of my babies! (well, actually they specifically told me not to call them “babies” anymore, but… :P) Our appointment was at 7:40a.m. and here we are, in the elevator on the way down for our buffet breakfast at the hotel, at 6:30a.m., I tell ya! 😀

Too bad we had to rush through breakfast though…the spread was seriously good!  I was especially impressed with a “gluten-free” section too.  Maybe next time then…

Safely buckled up in the taxicab.. :)

Hannah was the ever-willing model who would gladly pose for me while we were relaxing in the room later that day.

While Daddy worked in the room, we roamed the hotel, including the Sky Bar and Pool area.

All tired out, and resting in the lobby/reception area while Daddy checked us out of Traders.

…but not before a stop at the organizing mecca that is IKEA (even in the slight drizzle…and JAM!!)

Two weeks ago, Daddy was away for a short business trip to the States, and so I decided to make a trip with the kids and their grandparents (who was in Penang for a couple of days) back to Ipoh.  It has been a while since the kids visited Ipoh so they were naturally excited.

The drive was pleasant as the traffic was very light and the weather was cool and slightly cloudy.

Here are some iPhone shots I randomly took of our 2-day trip in Ipoh:

Ethan enjoying a good read with one of my favorite story books when I was a little girl:

Hannah’s “Don’t I look pretty?” pose:

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You know how we always say that people take things for granted just because some things are considered easily accessible to them?  For example, Ipoh people don’t really fancy pomelos that much and Klang Valley residents don’t dig Ikea and all that jazz?

Well, we’re just as guilty.. 😛 and I will tell you why.

Despite living in Penang for so many years now, we have NEVER taken the kids on a ferry ride.  The bridge has always been the easier and more convenient option for us.  However, during the past school holidays, since we had not planned on travelling anywhere, we decided to take the kids for an adventure on the ferry.

They were excited to say the least, and kept asking us when we were gonna reach the ferry terminal.  We had a few errands to run before that, you see…

The queue to board the ferry wasn’t long so we were relieved, but you know kids, they get really impatient…

“When are we getting on the ferry, Daddy?”

“Hey Daddy, why are those motorbikes cutting queue?”

“Why is the ferry not here yet?”

“I wonder how many vehicles can go on the ferry?!”

Finally, after about 10-15 minutes of waiting, we boarded the ferry.  The kids were super excited!

Here are a few shots I managed to take while ensuring the kids stayed safe while catching a glimpse of the sea.  Pete had to stay in his car, because for some reason, his car alarm would sound as the ferry rocked to and fro.

It was a fun trip for us all.  We drove to Sunway Carnival Mall and had our dinner there before heading for home…this time, we used the bridge 😛

Last installment of our Singapore Getaway posts… :)

Our 5th day was spent entirely in Universal Studios Singapore.  We already had our electronic tickets ready with us, so it was just a matter of waking up early, having breakfast at the hotel and then gearing up for our exciting day.

We were all overwhelmed by all the different things to do once we got in.  In many ways, Universal Studios Singapore was similar to Universal Studios Hollywood, but the jarring difference was the heat!  The kids didn’t seem to mind though…

They had fun on the Madagascar Carousel…

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We watched the cast of Madagascar do the “Move it Move it” in the Madagascar Boogie, and of course, the obligatory photo session…

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At the roller coaster ride: this ain’t the look of fear…au contraire, excitement was more like it!

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Hannah didn’t want to go on Shrek’s miniature ferris wheel (Magic Potion Spin), so it was just Ethan and Mommy…can you spot us?

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Hannah preferred to pose for the camera while waiting for us…

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Happy kids ready for what’s coming up next!!

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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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