Thursday, September 27, 2012

Butterfly garden and rabbit

Bento No. 252

Papa was nursing a flu since the beginning of the week.  My boy also started a mild cough and I am feeling not-so-good worrying that I may catch the virus too :(  I dislike it to be sick and at the same time, still has to perform the normal routine duties; driving to/from school, household chores, and play with my son.  Crossing my fingers I will be in good health and so is he!  Because my son is invited to a birthday party by one of his classmates, Arin this Saturday.  And the theme is too good to be missed because that is his favourite - a mini zoo and birds in a function room!  He was so excited when I told him about the invitation and he went shopping for her present last weekend.  And he insisted it has be a barbie doll and in pink dress!  He better to be well enough to enjoy the party :)

Inspired by my first visit to Tampines butterfly garden, my son's lunch today contains macaroni, minced chicken breast, sugar beans and butterfly shape carrots.  He has chicken soup to go with macaroni. Decorated it with a pretty rabbit foodpick .  Then, I tried hand carved the chinese character '兔' on the apple which I saw many mothers are so skillfull in carving out words on the wedges.  I am very satisfied with my end-product :)  Oh well, it definitely has to pair with a bunny apple!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Fried brown mee hoon

Bento No. 251
It's simply fried brown mee hoon (aka vermicelli) with cabbages, carrots, chicken breast and some shredded fried egg for my boy's lunch today.  When I showed it to him, he said "Those egg looks like water." Does it?  A child's imagination never fails to amaze me.  On the sides, he has grapes and strawberries. 

Yesterday, my son complained of urination was painful and refused to bath in the morning.  I did a quick bath for him but still, he was screaming and crying profusely.  Then, I looked up in one of the books I had, titled 'baby & child healthcare' by Dr Miriam Stoppard for more information. What I found was 'Balanitis' - which is a inflammation of the tip (glans) of the penis.   It does appear a little red on the tip of his penis but I wasn't sure since there was no swelling or discharge. We went to the clinic for a thorough check.  But I got a earful the minute I mentioned 'Balanitis' when we consulted our doctor.  Bad mood, I guess.  The doctor requested to do a urine test.   Because of the pain, my boy refused to pee even with a lot of cajoling and assurance from me. But I still have to collect his urine for the test!  So I had my knee down and hugged him tightly comforting him at the same time in the toilet.  Shortly, he was doing the business in tears.  And the test turned out to be a mild urinary tract infection. He was later given amoxicillin antibotic to treat the infection.  This morning, he was fine and pee happily without any pain. I am relieved that he is ok now.  However, he still hesitated when he wanted to pee.  He asked me if he has drank enough water.   Why?  Because doctor told him to drink more water to 'flush out' the bacteria ;)

Friday, September 21, 2012


Bento No. 250
Our Resident Committee (RC) decided to organise a halloween party in October this year.  It is something unusual and not the norm.  I was in fact quite surprised especially it is going to be held in the heartlands.  Perhaps, our community has become multi-nationals.  But I am not going to the party because my boy is not the brave type and he will tell me he is afraid of ghost and darkness.  However, he said he is fine with bats, pumpkin and spider??  So, I made a halloween theme bento for his lunch today.  Handcraved carrot in the shape of not-so-scary looking Jack-o-lantern.  A spider that is made of two slice of Japanese cucumber (using angel hair pasta to secure the head and body), carrot sticks for its leg and nori/cheese for its eyes.  Lastly, a full moon using cheddar cheese and I cut the shape of bat from nori.  Both of which are glued onto a brown rice oriental bun (馒头).  Inside the bun, he has teriyaki chicken thigh, fried tofu, cucumbers and thinly spread with ketchup.  To prevent the fillings from falling off, I inserted a pink musical foodpick. Yellow kiwi and grapes for fruits. 

Besides ghost and darkness, my son is also terrified of lizards and cockroaches.  Ever since I became a homemaker, I have to deal with these creepy crawlies everyday even though I hate it. Now, I do not fear as much as before.  How to conquer his fear?  Will he outgrow it?  Or will it continue to his 'manhood'? 

Linking up with Creativity 521 by A Happy Mum:-

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Cracking with Joy and Mickey Mouse

Bento No. 248
This requires a little bit of imagination. We discussed about it last night and here are our versions:-

Mine- The baby dino was astonished to see the egg cracked and a foot sticking out. Nearby, we have a curious stegosaurus fossil.

My son's  - The baby dino found a stone with fossils and bones.

We all agreed mine one was better and I enacted the story which set him off giggling and laughing incessantly.  *I become a clown*

Those stones as proclaimed by my son were frozen apple chicken balls which I made a batch previously.  Little dino was made with orange and yellow cheese and the rest of the details were done with nori.  He had spaghetti with tomato sauce, yellow kiwi and grapes yesterday.

At the bottom, he got brown rice porridge along with steamed egg and minced meat, blanched caixin, fried tofu, yellow kiwi and grapes.  I used a mickey mouse cookie cutter to press out the shape on the patty. 
Bento No. 249

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Baked salmon sushi and Rob The Robot

Bento No. 246
Nowadays, I could not get any more creative with sushi.  And I was contemplating to make brown rice or quinoa sushi.  I am not sure if my son will accept it for a change from the normal white rice sushi.  Anyway, here is his usual baked salmon inside-out sushi with cucumber, edamame, tamagoyaki, yellow kiwi and grapes for yesterday's lunch.

My son loves to visit Grandma and his cousin and we went over last Sunday!  Every trip, Grandma would pass him one old toy (in good condition) to my son which she kept it for years. These toys belong to my cousin who is now 10 years and had stopped playing with it.  The boys had great fun playing hide and seek, zipping around with the scooter and crushing out their beyblades together.  This year, I noticed they seem to enjoy each other company a lot more; one is 4, the other is 10.  All I can hear under the roof was my son's laughter who had the loudest voice.  Mommy, of course, become redundant.  It is clearly evident that having one or more siblings does make a lot of difference in their childhood.   Unfortunately, my boy is my only child.  And he has been having imaginary brothers and sisters to play with and even made up a storyline using lego blocks.  One night, we had a conversation about having a brother or sister that I asked him "What if Mommy cannot give you a real brother or sister?"  He answer was comforting to me but I got so emotional over it.  He said "It's ok, I will just be alone."  I have earlier written here how he was conceived miraculously. In this respect, we have left it to god's will whether we could have one more kid.

I cooked his favourite pumpkin rice today since I have leftovers from the pumpkin soup I prepared last week.  Then, I tried to shape the soft steamed pumpkin into one of the orange robot below from the Preschool TV series, 'Rob The Robot'.  I was speechless when he told me it looked like a butterfly ;P Haha!!  Anyway, he got blanched brocolli, yellow kiwi and grapes on the sides.
Bento No. 247

Friday, September 14, 2012

A Mother Love (Elephant)

Bento No. 245
It was disheartening to hear that a boy was given away and the adopted guardian did not look after the child properly. The saddest thing to know was that his own biological mother has too many children from other marriages that she no longer has the means to care for him.  And he skipped school!  That was where I have seen this boy loitering around the void deck while other children of his age was schooling.  Didn't his class teacher notice any abnormalities and render any assistance or reach out to his family?  Perhaps, they did? Once, he was bullied by other older boys at playground to the extent that one kind mom interfered and stopped these boys from fighting and further hurt themselves.   I felt sorry for the little boy who is now in Primary One and according to one of the mother that I met, still struggles to read and write.  Whereas my hubby commented that he might be another delinquent in the society.  A harsh fact in life!

To give a child away, perhaps is not a right or wrong decision but cicumstances forces.  A mother's love towards a child is priceless and to make such a decision is certainly a painful one.  A more painful one would be helplessly watching/knowing your child not being taken good care of.  That is my personal view.  I recalled how difficult it was when we tried several years to conceive and have consulted western medication and chinese physician.  With all the popping of clomid pills and drinking bitterly brewed chinese medication, trying hard to get pregnant.... however, it did not work.  And I did not have the courage to do FSH (Follicle-stimulation hormone) injection at home.  It came to a point that I have given up and decided to keep a pet dog instead.  And Nitro, a shihzhu breed, then 3 month old little furry came into our life and brought us so much joy that we never had.   He was like our baby; need to be cleaned, trained and loved!   We were enjoying every precious moments with our new member.  And suddenly, I discovered I was pregnant!  We were so happy and felt so blessed that we finally had a child of our own. Honestly, we attributed the success to Nitro.  He was our lucky star!!  Till now, we love Nitro as much as our boy.  Although, Nitro may be neglected for not spending enough time playing with him (I must confess).  

My son is definitely fortunate and lucky to have us as a parents and with so many uncles, annties, grandma and jie jie who adore him.  And I told him exactly the same yesterday night just before bed.

I put the same message in his bento as well.  He had a mother and child elephant shape tuna mayo sandwich that I pressed it out from the cookie cutters.  Along with a love shape bread that I spread it with red strawberry jam. On sides, he got mashed sweet potato topped with hand-craved letter 'E' on the cucumber and half of cherry tomato as well as red dragonfruits.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Pan-fried white snapper fillet and honey balsamic drumstick

Bento No. 243
Bento No. 244
First bento was packed with pan-fried white snapper coated with egg and corn flour, cabbage salad (that I followed the receipe of 'The Just Bento Cookbook' by Makiko Itoh.  Except that I omitted imitation crabmeat), Japanese cucumber, a cherry tomato and strawberries.  Second bento was my son's favourite honey balsamic drumstick which receipe can be found here at 'Food4Tots'.  Along with stir-fried sugar bean with flower carrots, brown rice and strawberries.  I am lazy to come out with anything creative these days but a few cute foodpicks will do the job very well too! ;)

We are looking forward to our first Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations at Tampines Central on the 29th Sep 2012.  Last year, I bought a dinosaurs paper lantern with a led light in it but it did not last with this little toddler.  And we also missed out the fun of lantern parading near our neighbourhood.   This year, I hinted to my neighbour who is a resident member of the committee and bought 3 tickets at $4 each from her.  And of course, we bought a Dragon cellophane lantern from Chinatown for the occasion per my boy's request.   On that day, I just need to ensure he has a nap and would not be grumpy later in the night.
Lately, I was shocked to hear my boy said the word, "stupid"!  I began to think how on earth he picked it up. Would it be I swear too much in the car on the way to school?  I must confess that I did but limited to words like 'stupid', 'idiot' and 'bloody hell' sub-consciously when there are bad driving behaviours on the road especially those who did not signal early, tailgate  or driving too slow on the first lane.  Children at this age absorbed like sponge.  I quickly corrected him that it is a bad word to use on anything or person.  I looked into his eyes seriously and he nodded in agreement.  When he was about to say the word 'stu----' again, he covered his mouth and smiled at me cheekily.  At least, he is listening.  Good boy!  Mommy should also stop by setting an example as well.  Perhaps, I should use 'potato head' instead ;P

Monday, September 10, 2012

White mice

Bento No. 242

How about a white mice for lunch?  Haha, it might sound a bit gross, right!  But my son had it for lunch today ;P  The entire mice was made with fishballs which I used angel hair pasta for its tail and whiskers as well as to secure the head and body.  Black sesame seeds for the pair of eyes and nori for its muzzle. Inside the bento, he has somen with Japanese greens, blanched flower carrots and strawberries.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

September holiday - Juz Play!

While I was not preparing any pretty bentos for this short school holiday, I was busy packing my child with fun-filled activities. And our lunch was made simple and not so presentable as can be seen below.  It was creamy baked pasta with ham and mixed vegetables in white sauce which the receipe was adapted from 'The First Complete Nutrition Guide for Asian Parents - Feed Your Child Right'. A very useful reference book for babies from birth and mothers.  Along with garlic mash potato.  My son liked it so much that he helped himself to many servings. 

What did we do for the past few days?  I brought my boy to the wildlife-themed rooftop water playground at Tampines 1 in the morning for a splash on Tuesday!   It was our second visit (our first visit was here) and the boy has a blast there.  And me?  I was sitting at a corner observing :P There is this one thing my son has never changed since he was a baby ie friendliness.  He can easily mingled with any children and often, also being rejected being too friendly.  And he is also not shy to join in the fun between fathers specially and their kids. They were playing waterguns shooting at each other. My boy politely asked to borrow the watergun and began shooting at -- not his own father!  I did not intervene because they appeared to be having loads of fun with him.  Until, the father surrendered :P  Another incident I recalled was at the Tampines children swimming pool when he was two years old.  He was pouring and splashing at the father and their children whom were total strangers.  And the recent one would be during our vacation at Hard Rock Hotel in Penang.  His classmate and other of their family members (fathers and kids) were wrestling in the pool.  He did tried to be part of the game but got booted out by one of the kids.  In so far, these fathers were sporting and did not bother by this little intruder of mine.   <Phew>
Ring of Fire, Turtle Museum
The next day, our Papa decided to take a day off and drove us to Omni Theatre to watch 'The Ring of Fire' in the afternoon.  It was a short and award winning documentary.  However, my child prefer 'To the Arctic' than 'Ring of Fire'. Me too!  Afterwhich, we dropped by the Turtle Museum at Chinese Garden.  We stumbled on this museum one fine day but we did not explore further because it was raining then.  Thereafter, I read from one of the Mom Bloggers who wrote how much her kids enjoyed at the museum.  I knew I have to make a trip there. For an animal lover like my son, it was indeed a perfect playground!  He touched it, attempted to carry it and fed them not only with the vegetables we purchased but the leaves he plucked <Oops!>.  And he said "I want to stay here for a long long time." :)  However, the rare, weird-looking ones and/or ferocious ones such as pig-nosed turtle, snake necked turtle, alligator turtles, etc were all kept inside the tanks. It was an eye-opener but the exhibits seriously need a makeover to attract more tourists and locals.

Butterfly Garden
Next in line was the butterfly garden at Tampines Changkat. Having stayed in Tampines for so many years, it was a shame that I did not know we have a butterfly garden in the heartland until another Mom blogger wrote about her neighbourhood.  We set out in the morning on Wednesday although it was quite hazy.  We sighted mostly 'Plain Tiger' butterflies, a green grasshopper and caterpillars!   The garden was also very popular with the preschoolers nearby.  We were lucky that we met a volunteer who brought a plastic container showing us the pupa.  Of which, some has transformed into butterflies.  We would not be able to spot the caterpillars without these volunteers. Do you know that caterpillars love curry leaves?  Now, I do!!  When it was time to go, my son was reluctant to leave the garden.

Daddy's Office and Chinatown
Lastly, Daddy's company has a 'Bring Your Kids To Work' day on Friday morning.  It was a yearly affair which my boy always looked forward to it.  There were food, activities and goodie bags for the kids.  It was also half-day-off for Mommy.  I grabbed the opportunity to indulge myself for manicure and pedicure at Raffles Place.  I usually go for plain nail colour but I got a little bold this time - lots of shimmer and glitter!  My little man later noticed it and commented "So pretty!".   He literally brightened up my day.  At noon, we met up with my Mom for lunch and together, we went to Chinatown to see the decorations of the Lantern Festival despite it began to drizzle.  At reasonable $8.50, we finally got a Dragon cellaphane lantern for my son after browsing a few stalls with some pricing as high as $12.  We ended the day with a sweet desert at '味香园甜品' or 'Traditional Desserts'.
So much of play for this September holiday! Even at home, my boy would be contented and happy to play lego.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

To the Arctic @ Omni Theatre


Recognise these planets?  It is none other than the Singapore Science Center.  We were there this afternoon to watch the documentary adventure 'To the Arctic' at the Omni-Theatre.  This is one of the lazy Sundays that we do not wish to exert too much energy but to relax as well as escape from the heat!  It has been our favourite family hunt ever since my boy learned to appreciate and better understand documentary shows.  We had also stopped visiting those air-conditioned indoor playgrounds like polliwogs or eXplorer kids which we used to do so when he was younger.  We had our lunch at the little cafe where we usually filled up our stomach before the show starts.  The food was alright but aglio olio spaghetti was a tad too salty.  The turkey and egg club sandwich my son had was yummy.  He also has a small glass of fresh milk.  I specially requested it to be warmed up since he had a little stuffing and running nose. He dislikes warm milk.  He finished it nevertheless after much coaxing from me ;) 
The documentary was fantastic featuring majestic view and wilderness of the Arctic and brought us so close to the lives of a mother polar bear and her twin cubs.  I was particularly touched at the scene where the mother bear put her life on the line trying to fend off a hungry lone male to protect her cubs.  Before bedtime, my boy came up with 'polar bear fight' which he earlier saw the bears playfully sparring. And both father and son played roughhousing fun together. 
Omni Theatre has never failed to amaze us with their movies.  We look forward to the next documentary show, perhaps 'The Ring of Fire'.