Monday, May 27, 2013

PassionArts at Nee Soon South

I have a lot of posts on Ashrie’s Firsts lately and this is another one.

Just yesterday, we woke her up (earlier than usual) for her coloring competition. Good thing she woke up at the right side of the bed and was very cooperative while we all prepared to leave the house. The event was held at the community multi-purpose area which is about 10 minutes walk from where we stay. We checked the registration if her name was on the list and they handed her the coloring sheet after the confirmation. We didn’t know that they will not provide even a chair for the kids to rest their drawing pads, so most of them (Ashrie included) had to either sit or lie on the floor to do their artwork. But some really came prepared with a drawing table and stool. And little did I know that a kid’s coloring competition for Nursery and Kindergarten students can be so competitive- to parents!

Some parents really refused to leave the cordoned area because they can see that they are not the only parent coaching, hence the “I-will-not-leave-until-they-leave” mentality. This went on for some time until the most thick-skinned parent left her kid do the artwork by herself. And worse, some even helped their kid by coloring some part of the sheet themselves! I guess it will be more interesting if the organizers will come up with a Parent Coloring Competition next year.

Ashrie worked speedily on her piece and was done in no time. I asked her why she colored the man’s legs pink, and she said “And it’s pretty!” Well, that’s the story of her first coloring competition. After that we had breakfast at the nearby McDonald’s where she had her Pancake Happy Meal.

Going back to the event after brekky, I participated in the Community Batik Painting. We dyed a huge pre-waxed banner and this is to be displayed at the Community Center. It’s fun! I will surely check the finished art piece soon and pay close attention to the red swirls on lower left side which was my little contribution to Community PassionArts banner.

Aside from the activities mentioned above, there were also other things to take part in. There was a Rubbish Bin Painting Contest, paintings and pottery for sale, free popcorn and cotton candy stalls, and a variety show for the residents.

Go PassionArts!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Ashrie at the Museum

This is another entry to Ashrie’s “List of Firsts”.

Today, Ashrie joined the school field trip to the Singapore Philatelic Museum with her Nursery classmates. It was her first bus ride without us, her first museum visit and altogether her first time away from us. (That’s why there aren’t any photos of her in the museum or during the bus ride.) We just have no idea how she handled her new found independence but we’re sure relieved when the school bus came back on the scheduled time, after three long hours.

We have initially agreed to let her join the trip but we were worried, to say the least, on the separation. Yes, it is us who had the “separation anxiety”. Thank God everything turned out well and above all, she came home safe and sound.

We're so glad she had fun. The first thing she told Mom was how nice the museum toilets were. She also boasts that they had a coloring activity. They sang “Wheels on the Bus” and played various kinds of drums.

With research, I have learned that the SPM offers programs for school (from Preschool to Secondary) and the public with a small fee. So for N2 preschoolers, they probably have done this:

Stamps! Stamps! Stamps!

At the Singapore Philatelic Museum, learn about Singapore's rich heritage, nature and traditional games captured on stamps.

• Introduction to stamps
• Show and tell with traditional toys
• Stamp game & colouring activity

Visit the SPM website for more information. I haven’t been there so I might come and visit the place one of these days. That’s it for now. Cheers y’all!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Ashrie Got Mail!

Hey, this is actually a log on Ashrie’s "List of Firsts". Well, she just received her first mail! It‘s the Bug News from Smales. So to IKEA thank you for this and to Ashrie, enjoy!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Is Everyone Ready for Fun?

Ashrie is now beginning to read. What fun it is to share stories with her as she tried to do the phonics and then suddenly the letters “come to life” and form a word. Letters make up words, words form a sentence, sentences becomes a paragraph, and a story is created. It all makes sense to her now. Great!

So here’s a book recommendation. It’s a book for young readers which is packed with excitement and wacky expressions. Just imagine three cows who wants to have fun but decided to do it all on Chicken’s little sofa!

Jan Thomas is a children's book author and illustrator. She lives in Socorro, New Mexico and has published three books with Harcourt Trade Publishers: What Will Fat Cat Sit On?, A Birthday for Cow, and The Doghouse; and three with Simon & Schuster's new children's imprint, Beach Lane Books, Can You Make a Scary Face?, Rhyming Dust Bunnies, Here Comes the Big Mean Dust Bunny!, and in September 2011, Is Everyone Ready for Fun? - Wikipedia

Monday, May 6, 2013

Ashrie’s Picnic Party

For Ashrie’s fourth birthday party, we have decided to go for a picnic theme and chose the Lower Seletar Reservoir Park as the venue for the event. Initially, Ashrie has chosen an open area in the park with two adjacent picnic tables and a flat lawn. It’s a perfect spot! But due to Singapore’s unpredictable weather conditions, we opted to use the sheltered area to be safe and dry (both the food and our guests) just in case of a downpour.

May 1, 2013. It rained heavily around noontime so even up to the last hour, we were on the fence where to setup the party. We have prepared the house but it really seems strange to have picnic mats on the floor and to have picnic foods indoors, so a few minutes before the party begins, we finally go for the gold, or green for that matter- to bring the party out, where it should be. Earlier that day, we had already posted a reservation note along with the permit from NParks on the concrete picnic table in the shelter so even if the shelter was full of people when we arrived, they graciously left without having been told when they saw us coming. There is also a group of teens who were somewhat disappointed when they saw us setting up the place ahead of them. It seems like they’re going to have a picnic party as well but took a chance and did not bother to acquire a permit from the authorities. Sorry guys!

Moving on, we have cozy picnic mats, picnic baskets full of munchies, red and white (and pink) balloons, and a few battery-operated LED lanterns, all these in either in a solid red and white color scheme or in the striking gingham pattern.

For the food, the buffet is composed of individually-packed pasta, corn on cob, chicken nuggets, fish balls, hotdog buns, egg pies, banana cupcakes, Eton Mess trifle, frozen ice pops, and a fresh watermelon cake. We had canned iced lemon and iced apple teas, plus bottled water, of course. We readied picnic foods but still served it nicely by bringing out the cake stand, the tiered cupcake stands, and white servewares lined with red paper napkins. It’s painstaking but I think that these little details and conscious efforts make an event extra special, when you do something that you would not normally do on an ordinary day.

My brother and I had a few trips back and forth the house and the park to deliver all the party stuff. But going back was just one trip back because of the help of our friends.

The weather turned out to be nice, cloudy and cool breeze all throughout the afternoon. Thank God! Special thanks to all our guests who came and celebrated with us even it was a public holiday that day.

And to the joy of my life, our precious daughter Ashrie, may you grow up with living up to your name, that God will be your ever-present Help (Ashrie) and you are His beloved (Jed) and no matter what, Mommy and Daddy’s too.

Happy, Happy 4th Birthday Ashrie!

Saturday, May 4, 2013


More and more of Ashrie’s paintings now have recognizable subjects, just like this painting done last night. It features an erupting volcano with trees in the foreground. Notice how she painted the clouds blue and made the unpainted white paper the sky. I guess most of us in our childhood did that too.


Friday, May 3, 2013

Gifts for Mother’s Day 2013

Hi guys! Mother’s Day is on May 12 and if you are looking for something to do for Mom on her special day, I have listed here a few suggestions. These are easy-to-do crafts and online stores that we personally patronize. If you still have time, you can prepare some gifts not only for your own mother and wife but also to the mothers closest to your heart.

Suggestion No. 1: The Mother’s Day Card
Even it’s a cliché to give cards on a special day, it is still heartwarming to receive one. Nothing melts the heart better than a sincere message. Even if you can say the message directly to mom, a hard copy immortalizes those thoughts and she can re-read it whenever she wants. Variants can be a poster, a glass-framed message, or a plaque of appreciation. It is best if it is handcrafted and not bought. Martha Stewart has many beautifully-designed Mother’s Day card for you to follow or get ideas from, like the one below. For more cards, click here.

Suggestion No.2: A Small Garden
Terrariums are little gardens encased in a glass jar where it is like a “little world” where humidity, pest control, and water cycle takes place. Unlike fresh flowers which will only last for a couple of days, terrariums when done right and placed in the right location inside the home or office can last up to a year or more. It requires little watering once a week and pruning probably once a month. You can actually bring Mom to The Plant Story where she can design and make her own project. They also sell prepared terrariums and DIY kits. Alternatively, you can also buy 3 to 5 potted herbs from the local nursery for her kitchen.

Suggestion No. 3: Grandkids' Photo
It can be a canvas print, a photo mug, a photobook, or a keychain. Photos will always be a well-loved gift, especially if your Mom has grandchildren already. I remember coming home to my parent’s house in the Philippines and their walls are filled with pictures of my daughter which they grabbed from Facebook. Most of which I haven’t seen on print! If she’s not yet a granny, a photo of you and all your siblings together will surely be appreciated. We use Snapfish to make our photobooks. It is efficient and affordable. Check out their website here.

Suggestion No.4: IKEA’s Mother’s Day Buffet Breakfast
Treat Mum to a sumptuous buffet this Mother's Day! Bring Mum down to the IKEA Restaurant this Mother's Day for a breakfast buffet!

Date: 12 May 2013
Time: 9am - 11am
Adult: $10
Child (4-12 years old): $5
Children under 4 years old: Free

Every Mum gets to eat free with each paying adult. Ticket sales starts from 4 May at the IKEA Restaurant. Limited tickets available. While stocks last.

(Notice that it mentions Mum, that’s because this information is from the IKEA website. I personally do not use Mum because it reminds me of the deodorant brand from the 80’s.)

Suggestion No.5: Bring Her to Evangel
Evangel Family Church will be celebrating Mother’s Day with a special Sunday service dedicated to Moms. She will be empowered and encouraged with The Message which all of us, not only Moms need. And would probably receive a “little surprise”. Visit the Evangel website for more information.

Hopefully your Moms will be touched with your labor of love. If all else fails, buy her a big bouquet of flowers or a golden south sea pearl jewelry. No doubt, she would definitely love it!

Advanced Happy Mother’s day to all Moms!

Thursday, May 2, 2013


Being four is a great deal for Ashrie. She has been longing to have a Småles passport and to play in IKEA’s Småland. Unknowingly, the passport has nothing to do with entering the playground premises. The passport must be scanned every visit to get a sticker which is equivalent to a point. Freebies can be redeemed with a required number of points. The playground on the other hand is not age dependent, as long as you reached the required height, you can enter, play, or watch cartoons for an hour, for free!

And having that passport she is now a citizen of the Quingdom of Småland, and is now officially Smålish!

For more information, visit the Småles Singapore website.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...