Wednesday, May 31, 2006

IKEA Again!

Our girl was feeling much better over the weekend and was already itching to get out of the house. As a treat we thought we'd go back to IKEA seeing as she seemed to like going there. Alright, I admit, WE like going there. The wife picked up a couple of stools and the kids had fun just walking around and playing with the furniture. Myself, I came for the swedish meatballs... :) Here are a few pics of the day...

Click on the photos to go to the Flickr page...

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Kid Funnies Part 13

For the past few nights, our son has been climing into bed with us. He sleeps between us and sometimes even kicks either his mother or me out of bed. He also wakes up really early but he's really good in that he tends to wait for us to get up before he does anything crazy like jumping on the bed.

One morning, it was just him and me on the bed as my wife already gave up her space to the little man. At any rate, he was already awake and was waiting for me to wake up. I was still half asleep when I rolled to his side of the bed. I was jolted wide awake when he began to shout "Don't crush me! Don't crush me!" I bolted out of bed thinking I was already crushing the life out of him.

Turns out, he was only playing but that was as good a wake up call as any...

Friday, May 26, 2006

Kid Funnies Part 12

I was watching the soccer match on TV ( Australia v Greece ) and was getting into the action. During a particularly exciting play I began shouting at the TV as men are wont to do. My daughter then put me in my place. "Don't shout at the TV, Daddy," she admonished. "It can't hear you!"

That shut me up real quick, but not without bursting out laughing with my wife. That should teach me to mind my manners.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Still Sick...

Our poor little girl is still sick. She's missed school all week but I'm just happy that she's still up and about despite her having fever and slight coughing. We've already taken her to the doctor and she's been taking antibiotics since Wednesday. She'll have to go back again tomorrow because she doesn't seem to be getting any better. Hopefully we'll get stronger medicine then.

Both her and her brother are still active, thank God, but because of her fever we've been forced to keep them indoors most of this weekend. We played in the house and doing all the things we could to keep them occupied. Here they are just tuckered out and having a big nap on their parents bed.

I hope she gets better soon as she's already complaining that she's missing school and her friends. Well, it's winter after all and I'm sure not a few kids will be under the weather too.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Mother's Day Lunch

We had a nice mother's day lunch last Sunday at a small Italian restaurant just a short drive away from the house. It was a good thing that I booked a table a week in advance because the place was packed already when we arrived. We got ourselves seated right away and surprisingly, the kids were extremely well behaved this time. They patiently waited for their food ( ham and pineapple pizza! ) and we played and read them some books we packed in their bag.

Although the food was fine, the service was a bit slow I think due to it being a busy Mother's Day weekend thing. It was a shame though as the restaurant had a good vibe to it but we'd certainly try to come back again when it's not too busy.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Winter Blues?

It's definitely winter. Our poor little girl's has been nursing a fever all week. They went to the doctor's this morning and got prescribed some anti-biotics. It's not too bad this time as she's still up and about but it's a sure sign that winter's here. I'm sure that the flu bug will make it's way around soon enough.

Anyway, our daughter is such an actress. Maarte. Here's a picture of her and her brother. She's showing us her sick face. She insisted on me taking the photo and blogging about it.

Here they are just being themselves. I'm trying to take a picture of them in their bright clothes together with the tulips we got for their mom on mother's day.

This doesn't look like anyone's sick at all.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

My Mother's Day Gifts...

And the flowers were nice too. :)

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Mother's Day Revelations

As you know, mothers all over the world get to have a special day tomorrow. Some of us will get breakfast in bed, a special meal with the family, nice gifts, etc. In my case, at this very moment ... I actually get a few hours today without the kids! Yes, my husband has taken the kids out shopping for a surprise gift for me. Bianca has been waiting for this day for the past 2 weeks now, trying so hard to keep it a secret from me, talking in hush tones with her Daddy as they try to decide what to get for me. How sweet!

Now that I have some quiet moments to myself, I reflect on a few recent discoveries about my kids:

1. It only takes a few words of appreciation or encouragement during these early years to give your kids confidence. I noticed it this morning as Bianca started playing on the computer and she reached the highest level of the game. I did not have to say "good job", "well done", "clever girl" anymore ... she just came to the conclusion "I did it because I'm the clever-est girl in the world!". Nico also sometimes tells me "good job mommy" with his thumb up without any prompting.

2. I was reading a book "Love Languages for Children", trying to 'analyze my kids' (as hubby would say) to find out what makes them feel loved. And when kids feel loved, they respond better to parents advice, communication and discipline in the later years. There are 5 ways mentioned in the book: physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, acts of service.

After reading the book, we concluded that our little girl's primary love language is 'quality time'. It's quite obvious when she gets all excited about the times when we are alone on our 'girls day out', rides on the bus, having a snack at the cafe where she gets undivided attention. Since she's now in school, we don't get to do this as much so she often mentions missing it. Right now, she's having a "daddy's day out" and I'm sure she'll tell me all about it when she gets back. Hope we put in enough love into her "love bank" to get us though the tough teenage years!

Also, I wonder what love language the little boy works on, the book says I have to wait until he's at least 5 years old before I can figure it out. He seems to enjoys physical games a lot, at least a few minutes each day seems to make him really happy all day. He also likes helping me out with small tasks like getting a cup, throwing things in the rubbish, grinding some salt into the food, etc. Oh well, will have to wait a few more years to find out for sure.

3. Bianca it not only confident, but very assertive as well. One time I was trying to choose a book for Nico at shops and here comes hubby trying to rush me, not really helping. At this point Bianca says "Daddy, let Mommy decide!". Another time, I was really busy getting a few things ready before they went to bed while hubby was just sitting down reading a book. This time she said "Mommy, you are so busy ..... and Daddy's not helping again!". LOL ;-)

These are times I am glad to have given up full-time work to be a stay-at-home mom. There are good days and bad days, but most definitely more good ones. I certainly like the feeling of knowing and caring for my kids ... and to me, that's what motherhood is all about. And all this would not have been possible if it wasn't for my hubby ... thanks mahal.


Saturday, May 06, 2006

Free Comic Book Day!

Yes, I'm indeed a comic book geek and today marks a special day for all my kind. It's free comic book day where participating comic book shops around the world are giving away specially crafted comics to all. It's the 5th annual celebration of Free Comic Book Day and it's also a great way to introduce readers young and old to this other form of literature. Yes, I said it, comic books as literature. More information about Free Comic Book Day here

on the busWe decided to take the bus to the city as an adventure and the kids really liked it. It's good that they still get enthralled by simple pleasures like riding a bus. I took my daughter to the shop while the wife and son went around Rundle Mall to window shop. As expected, my local comic book shop, Pulp Fiction Comics was already buzzing with activity. FCBD is always a big thing and the shop was packed.

There were people in costume walking around Rundle Mall promoting the free comics and the shop. I deliberately waited a few weeks before getting my regular orders of comic books from so I can pick them up on FCBD. My daughter went with me while the wife and son went off to do some window shopping at the mall. Aside from my own comic book stash, I made sure to pick up a free comic book for the girl as well. She's always enjoyed reading books but she seemed particularly happy to have a comic book to call her own.

We walked over to Chinatown to have lunch. It was a cold day and the wind picked up a bit while we were walking but at least it wasn't raining. We even got to pose for photos at the Victoria park fountain which is in the center of the city. After lunch, we did a little shopping at the Adelaide Central Market for some fresh food and veggies before heading home.

All in all, a great day. Now, to settle down to some comic book reading...

A few more photos:

"Getting Hungry!"

"At last!"

Central Market, fresh fruits and vegetables and everything else at the center of Adelaide.

At Victoria Square

Thursday, May 04, 2006

More Photos!

Well, who can say no to a grandmother? :) As requested, more photos of the apos! Courtesy of Filmloop. These were taken when we enjoyed some time at the park as well as clowning around at home.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Scanpan Warranties and Good Customer Service

About six months ago we bought ourselves some new non-stick cooking pans. They were a Danish brand called Scanpansupposed to be the best around with a lifetime warranty and guaranteed that the non-stick coating would never to blister or peel. Three months later, much to our dismay, we found the pans to doing exactly that: the non-stick surface was forming blisters and peeling.

Unfortunately, we lost the receipts and didn't know if the store would still take them back. My wife tried to return them anyway and was pleasantly surprised that the store was more than happy to take them back and have the pans shipped to the local distributor. They explained that the distributor was normally pretty good about taking back damaged pans and seeing the states our pans were in they had no problem accepting them back. Just this week the distributor delivered to us our brand new pans without any fuss.

I'm quite happy that the company owned up to the lifetime guarantee even though we weren't able to show the receipt. I know of a few stores that would be none too flexible about that. Goes to show that there's still a level of trust here in Australia that I hope won't go away anytime soon. Now, what to cook for dinner?