Monday, August 31, 2009

Felted hearts and stars

Cookie cutters with colourful roving in the background
Wet roving pressed into the cookie cutter- use a disposable chopstick if you do not have a felting needle
My first shapes drying out
I decided to do something homemade for Ellie's first Teacher's Day. Been doing a bit of reading on felting for my design class (I've started teaching preschoolers one afternoon a week) and after seeing some of these on a craft blog, I decided to try these out at home. What you do is get a whole lot of roving (raw wool) and then stuff them into the cookie cutters, then soak them in water until they felt. Nothing a three year old can't manage. Ellie helped me make two shapes before leaving me to finish the other six. Two days later (today) when the wool is all dry I realise that I didn't soak many of them long enough. The wool has dried and exploded into a bouncy mass. Good thing I had the sense to make a lot more and had enough for the teachers!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Snatching and other domestic disturbances

Ellie and Caitlin are playing together a lot more these days but the snatching is driving me crazy! I really think it is a sister thing. I don't ever remember snatching my brother's toys. My conclusion is that sisters like the same things and want to play with the same things at the same time. I would have never thought of wrestling that transformer toy out of my brother's hands.

And Caitlin gets her hands in everything.

Saturday 15 Aug. We were having lunch and had our eyes of the table for a couple of seconds. In those few seconds, Caitlin was up on Ellie's highchair with my pink brush in her hand stirring the water in the fish bowl. She then lifted the brush up in the air flinging and shaking the water all over the table. We had to throw half the lunch away. Just couldn't stomach the thought of having fish-water in my salad, especially after fishing a couple of dead fish out of the bowl that morning.

Last Sunday 16 Aug. I was feeding Ellie. Always a challenge although I must say she is eating 3 times what she used to but it still takes forever. KM and I had planned to take her out for ice-cream for her one-on-one with her parents. The last few mouths take the longest but I was pretty determined that she should finish her meal before the outing. I had my plate in one hand and a spoon in another. Caitlin came by my side with a toy hammer, and I thought I heard "hit, hit". She was aiming for her toy on the floor but didn't get that far. It only takes 2 seconds to create a mess that takes 10 minutes to clean up. Ellie was pretty pleased that she didn't have to finish her meal.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Back, and finally a restaurant list (been wanting to do that for a while)

I am back to writing 2 blog entries a month. Too tired at the end of the day to write. The kids take so much out of me especially when KM is away for work. Don't get my break at the end of the day. Trying not too sleep after twelve because the day starts the night before. (I knew that long ago but it takes a lot of discipline to set that in motion) I need to get up before the kids do and get enough sleep or I will be an angry grouchy mommy. Try telling me that when I am trying to get some sleep in the morning after getting up 4 times in the night to sort the 2 kids out. Hence the long absence.

What I really want to do is start a list of child friendly places. So I don't run out of ideas when we are trying to look for something fun to do, or a find decent place to eat. Caitlin doesn't like being in a high chair for long and for some reason never seems to eat well in a restaurant so any place we go to has to have a high tolerance for kids and mess. It doesn't have to be a Macdonalds or Swensens. What I am looking for are grown-up looking places with decent food. I am trying to record the more memorable meals- meals when our fussy-eater children actually sat down and ate and enjoyed the food. HAving a high chair in the restaurant does not make it a child-friendly place

With Caitlin and Ellie, Chinese or Japanese usually work best. Restaurants with stall seating to sandwich and active kid is great and Japanese floor seating in a private room is even better.

Kids get toys. Chawanmushi, udon and tofu always works. We had the private room. Caitlin and her friend Isabel kept themselves busy with the cushions while the adults ate.

Empire cafe
Stall seating. Yummy local food. Kids cutlery. Kids get warm water served in disposable plastic cups with covers. You know that the restaurant has given some thought to the child-diner when children get served water in these cups without even asking for it. Most places have the ubiquitous ikea high chair but the high chair in this place is padded and compfy. Caitlin sat in their for almost the entire meal. Chee cheong fan for the children.

Canopy at Bishan Park
Shady outdoor dining with space walk about. Toy basket with some good quality but dirty-looking toys. Cheaper than having a meal in town and so near home.

Brussel sprouts
Couring pages for kids. Ellie loved the creamy mushroom sauce the mussels came in.

Crystal Jade
Anything noodly and soupy usually works well with Ellie and Cait.