I take Bubbles grocery shopping once a week. Each time, she squeals with delight when she sees a particular stuffed toys - filled shelf from afar. This is what happens:

She'll shout "Bear!", wave excitedly, and reach out to touch the plushies. Next up is her display of discernment. She'll give a friendly smile to Piglet, pat Winnie, shake her head at Tigger, and insist on hugging Eeyore. She'll hold him close to her chest, pat him lovingly and sometimes even go into a familiar thumb-sucking state usually reserved only for home.

Sweet as she is, I get even more gooey inside when she obediently hands him over to be put back on the shelf (his home, as I tell her). This happens when I say we have to go home and that we'll come by again the following week. Then from afar, as we go about picking up items on our shopping list, she'll wave to Eeyore and friends whenever she sees the shelf.

Little Guilin

Every weekend, we think about where to take Bubbles, just so she has new experiences. She is always enjoys these outings. Recently, we took her on a whim to Little Guilin. We weren't dressed for it at all, as you can see from Bubbles' "going to the mall" outfit.

The weather was beautiful that day, and we enjoyed the cool breeze that blew over the pond. There is a little secluded area where you could sit on large rocks at the edge of the pond to admire the view. We were there for a while watching some little boys attempt to catch tadpoles. Birds were chirping and there was a quietness that was refreshing.

All of a sudden, loud music penetrated the air. An indistinguishable pop song played from a small radio brought in by a couple. They were completely oblivious to the peaceful sounds of nature that they had just drowned out.

We left soon after but not before taking a holiday-worthy shot of Bubbles.

Risotto Cravings

Risotto cravings have been hitting me hard these few weeks.
Comfort food for busy days.
I need to somehow squeeze in a fix this week!

I just backed into a pillar and smashed my backlights :( Car boot can't close properly. Need comfort food!

Playdate of a different kind

Bubbles with her new doggy friend.
I think they had fun! :)

1st Birthday Party Resources

I've had a few people ask me where I got stuff for Bubbles' 1st birthday party. I hope this little list will come in handy for those who might need it!

Birthday Cake(s)
We were blessed to have my MIL bake the actual day birthday cake, and a friend bake the one for the party. Both were delicious! If I had to buy a cake though, I may have gone for Artisan Sweets. I love their macarons, their cakes look gorgeous and the staff/owner whom I talked to when I was in the shop was thoroughly pleasant. If I was swayed by nostalgia, I would have chosen Smiling Orchid. They have been around since my childhood days, and have consistently produced quality cakes. Many of my childhood birthday cakes came from there!

Party Decorations
1. Sister (made the musical notes deco and helped me decorate the room while I got Bubbles ready)
2. Dad (printed photos of Bubbles on A4 paper and provided clear plastic sheets to create sharpness to the shots)
3. A large party supply shop at People's Park Centre, There are also a few similar ones at Tekka Mall. I was told many of these moved there from the Concourse. I chose to go to this shop because their products are sold more cheaply than shops in glitzier malls. If you are particular, you will find yourself doing a bit of digging to get what you want though. I didn't mind doing so!

A Party Factory
A little party shop tucked away at Cluny Court, they sell helium inflated (plain coloured) balloons for S$1 each. They come tied with ribbon strings and are usually bundled into bunches of 10 for easy transaportation. I paid $20 for delivery because I ordered too many to fit into a car. Otherwise, it shouldn't be a problem to collect them on the day of the party yourself! We gave every kid 1-2 balloons to take home.

Goody Bags
1. SKP
For paper bags, foam stickers and little wooden toys.
2. NTUC Fairprice
You can't go wrong with picking up some snacks from here. Especially for older kids.
3. Love for Earth
My favourite organic store run by a lovely couple. I bought snacks suitable for the younger kiddos.

We decided to go with Casserole after rave reviews from our guests during Bubbles' 1st month party where we also catered from them. People genuinely like the food, and portions are generous without being excessive. I think I've found my to-go-to caterer!

Melvin Ho Photography
This chosen based on a friend's recommendation. She made all the contact arrangements for me. I like Melvin's work, and he really is an easy going guy who delivered what we wanted. Roboman in particular was mighty pleased because I didn't need to nag him during the party to take photos =P Our CD of photos came to us less than a week after the party, and Melvin thoughtfully saved them in both full size as well as a smaller sized version for online uploading. Plus!

Read about the party here, here and here.

Birthday Party 3: Bubbles & Friends

Bubbles had on her chubby-cheeked "what's going on, Mummy?" expression for most of the party. She wasn't her most smiley and was probably a bit overwhelmed by the crowd and the noise. She was happier when guests started to leave and a smaller group of kids were left to play with her. Unfortunately our photographer had left by then, and we didn't take any photos on our own!

Nevertheless, the photos taken reflect happy memories. She clung on to angpows given to her, and thoroughly enjoyed the bubble-blowing session (as did the other kids). One of the little girls from our neighbourhood told Roboman the next day that she was thinking about the "super fun" bubbles that she couldn't sleep that night!

Birthday Party 2: Play Time!

A play area was set up in the party room for the kiddos.

In line with the music theme, I prepared a dedicated play area with whole bunch of musical toys - instruments, a music book, an assortment of clappers, shakers etc. (I made some shakers with empty bottles and rice grains.) Each goody bag contained an animal shaped castanets that some kids took out to play.

I considered hiring additional toys or a bouncy castle type of thing, but decided I would save that money for Bubbles' birthday parties when she is older! Instead, I had lovely guests who responded to my request to bring a musical toy each. Some friends also brought ride-y type toys that were a hit.

The Ikea tent you see in the 1st photo was also widely popular. It cost me only S$12.90! A great buy indeed. It proved really hardy and emerged unscathed after heavy duty rough play!

We were delighted that the play area worked out way better than expected. I'll certainly use this idea again for future parties!

Birthday Party 1: Cake, Goody Bags & Balloons

I received photos from Bubbles' birthday party and was in a state of inertia for a while. It is the kind of compelling inaction that takes over when you see too much of a good thing and cannot decide what to do with all of them.

Her "Let's Make Music!" party had plenty of musical toys, a 'grand piano' atop the homemade birthday cake, a 12-month photo wall, balloons and bubbles. We had about 100 grown-up guests, and more than 30 kids (!) That was already a streamlined guest list.

I found it tough to select photos that reflect the spirit of the party without compromising on our guests' privacy. Hope you enjoy them nevertheless! :)

Some of you may have noticed that I've moved to a new domain name. After blogging for 5 years, I felt ready to have an online space to forever call my own. Do help me out by updating your links!

I'm so happy to have made this move! I did the work one afternoon when Bubbles collapsed her 2 naps into one (she has been doing that occasionally these days). I therefore had a nice long 2.5 hours to work on this.

I've also re-worked my links. There's a new About Me section, and I've updated my Blog Links to reflect names of sites rather than their writers as I did previously. I've removed links that are no longer updated, and those which have restricted access.

What can I say? I'm totally digging how clean the page looks now.

Now to work on my messy tags. I've never been good at organising stuff - filing has never been my forte. I am just plain bad at categorising things! But the tags are getting to me. If you are good at this, I'll be so grateful for suggestions!

The night with the lantern

I embarassingly don't really know the significance of the Mid-Autumn Festival. I recognise the season because there will always be mooncakes in the house (almost always gifted), and a plethora of lanterns being sold at shops everywhere.

I've heard it is a tradition for grandparents to buy lanterns for their grandkids. My mother-in-law did buy one for Bubbles. A battery-operated Winnie the Pooh paper lantern. It is actually rather pretty, and doesn't blast any annoying music.

Tonight, the estate management organised a little gathering for the residents. They distributed paper lanterns and sparklers, and served finger food. Many kids were running around the area with glowy lanterns in their hands and the air was filled with a mild smell of smoke.

Bubbles eyes were opened WIDE when she saw all the interesting things that were happening around her. She dutifully held her lantern as she toddled around, occasionally shrieking with excitement or waving to other kids. After a while, her arm got tired and she ended up dragging the lantern on the floor. Soon, she didn't want to hold it any more, and was content toddling (with her hand in mine), everywhere.

A birthday week

A week has passed since Bubbles' first birthday, and 3 days since the big birthday bash.

I'm still reliving the week in my head and heart. Remembering the emotions that I felt while selecting photos to put up at her party. Has one year really gone by just like that? Did she really grow so much and so fast? What happened to my little fountain head?

It was really enjoyable watching her interact with family and loved ones. Seeing her shriek with excitement and joy. Hearing her say "Ba Ba Ba LL" and pointing to the ceiling when she saw the party room filled with balloons. Watching her amazement at the flickering flame of a candle. Holding her hand as she toddled with all her might to observe all there was to see. Thrilled by how tenderly she hugged the teddy she was given while lunching at Oscar's.

My baby is very much a sweet little girl now. This birthday week has made me kiss and hug her more each day, knowing that another year is going to fly by again. Just like that.

Happy 1st Birthday my baby!

Bubbles turned ONE today!

The entire family took leave to celebrate.

Happy Birthday my dearest baby.
Thank you for all the joy you have brought into our lives.
We love you very much!

I was filled with emotions today, overwhelmed by the occasion and recalling the past year. My little baby has grown to become the loveable little girl she now is. 

I look forward to be alongside her every phase of life that she will go through. To support her through difficult times, and celebrate her achievements. To be her guide, her confidante, her friend, her mother.  May God grant me the ability to be all of these, even as He has blessed me so richly with a daughter like Bubbles. Thank You.

Party Planning

This is the week of Bubbles' 1st birthday!

She had another 'birthday party' practice over the weekend - attending a joint birthday party of a 3-year-old boy and 10-year-old girl. Amazingly, she didn't mind wearing a party hat!

My in-laws are arriving soon. We've moved Bubbles back into our room to make space for our guests.

Checklist of things done:
- Decorations
- Balloons - 6 10-balloon bunches + 1 birthday bouquet
- Cake - a lychee sponge cake baked by a friend. The design is a surprise but will go with the "Let's Make Music!" theme.
- Photographer - yes I caved in and hired one
- Kiddos' play area set-up - musical toys, ride-on toys, push/pull toys, bubbles, and a tent
- Goody bags - mostly done
- Outfit for Bubbles - she'll be in a bubble dress! :)


I just need to print out photos for a photo-line. And maybe get flowers?

Now, what am I to wear?!

Nothing Rice

Bubbles has early dinners, but always sits at the table with us when we have ours. She usually gets her own finger food - baby biscuits, broccoli florets, steamed carrots, fruits etc.

Recently, we have started to give her some of our rice, as she is really keen on having whatever we eat. She loves it!

I am reminded that I used to ask for "Nothing rice!" as a tot. She must have inherited the rice-enjoyment gene. Rice - what fun to eat! Little itsy bits!


So I spent yesterday evening at a kickboxing class I recently signed up for. Since giving birth, I have not intentionally exercised and I felt ready to start!

During my pregnancy, I swam a lot. In fact, I was swimming up to the very day I gave birth. However, these shoes you see me wearing were languishing in my shoe cabinet for such a long time that I was afraid they would crumble! I also forgot that all my exercise gear have been packed away in the storeroom, so had to make do with a pair of harem-y pants. It actually turned out to be a great choice because I think its baggyness hid all my wobbles. haha.

So how did the class go? I was happy to note that my upper body strength is in pretty good shape. I didn't feel the strain the way many others did (well, I do lift a 9.2kg baby every single day). I also managed the cardio parts pretty well, and managed to do most of it without cheating on the intensity. However, because I was nursing one of those long-drawn headaches that make me nauseous, I went away for a while during the warm down to throw up. I felt great after that.

My legs felt slightly wobbly during dinner, but I woke up this morning feeling perfectly fine.

Am quite pleased that I made the choice to do this class. Best of all, if my friends indulge me, and if I get childcare sorted, we might be able to do once-a-week dinners after classes now. Maybe!


I love salad 'colours'. This was just a small side salad that had nothing but some leaves, croutons, half a hardboiled egg, and (fake) bacon bits. I chose it in place of a creamy soup because I think I'm putting on weight.

As I end my breastfeeding journey, I no longer have calories taken out of me on a daily basis. Kickboxing, here I come!

The birthday cake

Have you seen such a huge birthday cake?

We were recently invited to a 1st birthday party and this gorgeous 3-tiered strawberry shortcake was brought out. It was such an attention-grabber that guests (myself included!) were gathered around trying to take photos of it.

Bubbles is not going to get such a big cake next week. But she will be having 2 lovingly made ones - one for her actual birthday, and one for her party :)

I'm excited! (and very busy planning for the celebrations).

She's turning ONE! I can hardly believe it!

Singing on my knees

2 things we often see her do at play:

Kneel and Sing!

Very pleasant to watch :)

Grandpa & Stairs

In the past week, Bubbles' index finger seemed to have come alive, and she now uses it to point to what she wants or where she wants to go. Her favourite activity now is to climb stairs and to ride on escalators.

And who obliges her the most? Her dear Gong Gong, who goes out of his way to accompany her to every staircase and escalator that they come across during outings. These little excursions never fail to bring about appreciative chuckles from the little one, and I'm pretty sure backaches for the grandpa =P

Yellow Ribbon Project

Do you know that it is Wear-a-Yellow-Ribbon month?

The Yellow Ribbon Project is one that I personally am inspired by, having heard real stories from the folks who started this initiative. Sometimes a 2nd chance is all a person (and his family) needs to move on in life.

Check out also their Art Gallery and Exhibition.