Friday, 18 June 2010

Friday nights with the girls

Fridays are one of our favourite days of the week. Firstly coz it heralds the start of the weekend. But mostly coz on Fridays, we usually go over to my sister's place for dinner. My parents would be there too. So the adults get to catch up with one another, while the kids get to play together.
If hubbs or myself manage to take leave that day or that afternoon, we'd bring Isaac there early so he gets to go swimming with the girls too. Then he'd also have more time to spend with the girls. Due to our busy work schedules, we haven't been able to do that much. But we try.
The girls look forward to us coming too. They enjoy playing with Isaac - have been so, since Isaac was young. I always enjoy seeing the kids playing together. Reminds me of when I was young, playing together with my cousins. We used to spend a lot of time with our cousins when we were young. Playing together and whatnot.

"whatnot" was when we grew older and started engaging ourselves in more activities which was more than just playing with toys. I remember the times we would follow Joel and Yew Jin into the canals to go 'fishing'. There wasn't much fish, we usually caught tadpoles. But it was fun. The whole group of us cousins used to sneak into Nanyang Girls' High School to play hide and seek in the school grounds as well. I recall one year, during Chinese New Year, we sneaked in to play hide and seek, when it started to rain heavily. Stuck in the school, we started playing cards in the school canteen to pass the time till the rain stopped.

There was a time when Yew Kiat and I were in into paper bullets. We would spend our time folding paper bullets, competing with one another to fold the best paper bullets - the ones that would inflict most pain. I learnt many things from this. For example, paper bullets made out of tissue paper were really weak, and that the harder the paper, the harder and more solid the bullet. But if the paper was too thick and hard - very difficult to fold. Also, if you fold thin paper really well, they make pretty good bullets too. Delivery played a part too - the closer you were to your target, the more pain you inflict. Oh and if you pull your bullet back (from the rubber band) really hard, you inflict a lot of pain too. Very educational, don't you think?
Okay let's not let my violent tendencies distract us here... So what does Isaac play with the girls? Sometimes they play with toys, or games that the girls have. Sometimes, they go cycling - Becca and Isabelle do - Isaac runs to keep up - he is very fast! Sometimes they watch tv together. Sometimes, they run around quite a bit. Very excitable bunch they are. Isaac likes to follow Isabelle and Becca in whatever they do. With kids this age, it doesn't take much to excite them and they have great fun together not really doing anything much - that's the beauty of kids playing together.
Sometimes they get us, the adults (hehehe we're now the adults - we used to be ' the kids' remember? ;p ) to read to them. In these pictures, my sister was actually reading to the kids, and she was conducting a play too. She cast the kids into different characters in the story she was reading, and made them enact the story.

The kids can't stage a proper skit yet, but they have a lot of fun doing this, even though it's my sister telling them what to do. One of their favourite stories to act out is The Three Little Pigs. Sometimes hubbs gets to be the Big Bad Wolf, sometimes Chris my brother-in-law does. It's great fun.
pix taken on 26th March 2010
Isaac @ 2 years 7 and a half months
Natalie @ 2 years 4 months plus
Isabelle @ 4 years 10 months plus
Rebecca @ 6 years 4 months plus

Hubbs and I have started playing some simple theatre warm up games with the kids too. We play "Yes, lets!" though hubbs conducts it, and he forgot the name of this activity and he calls it "Let's be!". Basically, someone stands on a chair and suggests something, like "Let's be an aeroplane!" and everyone says "Yes, lets!" and starts 'flying' around like an aeroplane, making aeroplaney actions and sounds.... until someone gets on the chair and suggests something else again, say "Let's be a snake!" "Yes, lets!" and everyone slithers about like snakes, making hissing noises.

Of course, with adults, we have more sophisticated suggestions like "Let's be a waiter in a restaurant!" and people can start to pretend to serve dishes, pour into a cup, walk about as though holding a tray in one hand and the other hand behind his back, taking orders etc - different representations of the same thing/person we're all trying to be.

But with kids, things are much simpler - the suggestions are invariably animals. The usual elephant, snake, cat, dog, chicken, pig etc. We try to vary that by suggesting roles which the kids will understand, like "Let's be a teacher!" - then they'd pretend to write on a board etc. Or "Let's be a doctor!" But with kids as young as Isaac and Natalie, they're too excited and hard pressed to think of something different to do, so they just end up copying what the older girls are doing.

We noticed that the girls don't have a tendency to make suggestions - perhaps they're not quite sure what to suggest. But then, Isaac seems to like doing so, and he often suggests something when hubbs facilitates and asks "What shall we be next?"

All in all, great fun! And whadya know! It's Friday today!!! Yay!!! :)

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