Monday, 23 April 2012

Sing, sing a song

Sing, sing a song
Sing out loud, sing out strong
Sing of good things not bad
Sing of happy not sad

Sing, sing a song
Make it simple to last your whole life long
Don't worry that it's not good enough
For anyone else to hear
Just sing, sing a song
I love singing. I love hearing my voice. I love listening to the lyrics of songs, and try to figure out the story behind the lyrics. I love making up my own parodies/alternate versions of songs.

I've listened to my fair share of the radio when I was young, taping songs off 98.7FM's Say it With Music, and playing+stopping the tape to listen to the lyrics to write them down etc. It's so much easier now, to search for lyrics off the internet. The two stanzas above are from Sing A Song by The Carpenters, by the way.

So now, with the kids, I sing a lot to them. It started when Isaac was in my stomach. Never too early to let him listen to Mummy's voice, I thought. So even when I was pregnant with him, I'd sing to him. When the kids were wee babies, singing was also a useful tool to lull them to sleep. 

Interestingly, the twins seem to be more musically inclined than Isaac was, in the sense that they took to singing and songs much earlier than Isaac did. Then again, it could also be due to the fact that the twins started childcare earlier than Isaac did. *shrug* or that could be a coincidence.

Anyway, one day, many months back, while listening to the kids singing along to BINGO - I realised that the twins, despite being younger than 2 years old (at that time) knew how to spell the blasted dog's name "Bingo"! Dang! I thought to myself! Why is it that a child would know how to spell some fictional farmer's dog's name - even before they knew how to spell their own name?! Something is not right! So I had an excellent idea - I'd use the Bingo song to teach the kids to spell their own name! And so I embarked on one of my favourite pastimes - creating personalised alternate versions of known songs! :p

Sing to the tune of "Bingo"
There is a handsome boy I know
And Asher is his name, oh
A S H E R! A S H E R! A S H E R! and Asher is his name oh!

There is a pretty girl I know
And Shawna is her name, oh
S H A W N A! S H A W N A! S H A W N A! and Shawna is his name oh!

There is a clever boy I know
And Isaac is his name, oh
I S A A C! I S A A C! I S A A C! and Isaac is his name oh!
And that's how Asher and Shawna learnt to spell their names before they even turned two. Isaac already knew how to spell his name, at this point in time. Asher and Shawna even know how to sing each others' name! Asher's name is easier to spell, coz it has 5 letters and corresponds directly to the Bingo. Shawna's name has an extra letter, which you must speed up the spelling a little when singing along to the Bingo tune - but it still works.

Ring a Round of Roses
Ring a round of roses, a pocket full of roses
Asher! Asher! We all fall down!

Ring a round of roses, a pocket full of roses
Shawna! Shawna! We all fall down!

Ring a round of roses, a pocket full of roses
Isaac! Isaac! We all fall down!
I didn't start this one. Shawna did. Think coz "Ashes" and "Asher" sounded similar, so Shawna really thought it was "Asher! Asher! We all fall down."
Sing to the tune of "Old MacDonald had a farm"
My father is Mr Tan, E I E I O
And in his house there's Asher Tan, E I E I O
Asher cry cry here, Asher cry cry there, here cry there cry, every time cry cry
Asher Tan must be a good boy E I E I O

My father is Mr Tan, E I E I O
And in his house there's Shawna Tan, E I E I O
Shawna pull pull here, Shawna push push there, pull here push there, every time so rough
Shawna Tan must be a good girl E I E I O
My father is Mr Tan, E I E I O
And in his house there's Isaac Tan, E I E I O
Isaac whine whine here, Isaac groan groan there, here whine there groan, everyday moan moan

Isaac Tan must be a good boy E I E I O

haha this one irritates Isaac to no end. He'd start whining "Noooooo....." when I start singing his stanza, until I change the adjectives to something good about him. The good thing about all these songs is that it's very easy to change the lyrics on a whim.

Pictures all taken on 22nd April 2012
Last night, in trying to get the kids to sleep early, since it's a working day today, we switched off the lights and told the kids "Sleep!!!" Asher was lying next to me, and he started singing the following in the tune of "Wheels on the Bus (goes round and round)"
Asher:" The Mummy on the bus say ''Go to sleep','Go to sleep','Go to sleep' The Mummy on the bus say ''Go to sleep', all night long"
Hubbs:"Asher!!! Go to sleep!!!"
Me:*snickering away*

A few weeks ago, while hubbs was playing "London Bridge is Falling Down" with the kids, Shawna substituted her name in:"London Bridge is falling down, falling down, London Bridge is falling down, my fair Shawna!"

So! The kids are starting to learn the knack of substituting lyrics with their own words! Faboo!!! So proud of them!!! :) Hubbs says they are definitely my kids indeed!!! :)

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Boobies talk

Look at my Isaac. He's such a big boy already. He'd be turning 5 this year in August. My friends comment that he looks a bit different in real life compared to his photos. Apparently his photos make him look older than he is. Looking at these two photos below, you can almost see how he'd look like as a teenager. I'm crossing my fingers that he'd still have complexion this good when he is in his teenage years.
11 April 2012 | Isaac @ 4 years 8 months
17 May 2011 | Isaac @ 3 years 9 months
It's easy to sort of ignore the fact that your kids are growing old... until you start to realise that they are getting to be more aware of themselves, people around them and their surroundings. It started sometime last year when hubbs had his first "sex education" talk with Isaac.

I'd come home after work, and Isaac ran to the door to greet me.
Isaac:"Mummy, Mummy! I know how I am born!"
Me:"Really? How? How were you born?"
Isaac:"Yes! I was in your stomach, and then you push me out!"
Me:"Er, right! That's right! Who told you?"
We walked into the house. Hubbs was having his dinner, and I sat down to join him.
Hubbs:"So, Isaac, you told Mummy what you learnt?"
Isaac:"Yes, I told Mummy already."
Me:"Yeah, he told me he was in my stomach and I pushed him out."
Hubbs:"Huh?! That's all!? Isaac! You learnt much more, didn't you? Papa told you..."
Hubbs:"Remember, Papa told you about Mummy having an Egg. Then Papa have many little sperm, in the balls, then the sperm go and fertilise the egg, then you will be in Mummy's stomach? Remember?
Isaac:"Oh yah..."
Me:"Erm, what brought this about? How come suddenly got this, er, lesson, huh?"
Hubbs:"Oh, we were peeing together at the toilet bowl, then Isaac pointed to my balls and asked me what they were. So I told him, they were called balls, or testicles, or lam pa..."
Me:"*bulging*eyes* Did you have to be sooooo specific?!"
Hubbs *grinned* at me. Faint.
4 February 2012 | Shawna @ 25 months
So maybe I shouldn't have been so surprised when Isaac started to notice stuff... like boobies. Now, for the record, I didn't teach him that word...

A week or so ago, I was drying Shawna after her bath, and dressing her when...
Isaac:"Hey Mummy, look, Shawna has boobies!"
Me:"*splutter* What?! Oh yeah. She does, doesn't she... where did you learn this word "boobies" from?"
Isaac:"Oh, it's Angus, he says "boobies" hahahahaha..."
Me:"Oh I see" Angus is Isaac's classmate.
Isaac:"Mummy, why is Shawna's boobies so small? Yours so big."
Me:"Er... That's because Shawna is still young, next time when she is a big girl, she will have bigger boobies. And they're called breasts lah; can you please don't say 'boobies'?"
Isaac:"Oh! I know! So when she is a Mummy like you, then she will have big boo - breasts?"
Me:"Not really. She doesn't need to be a Mummy to have bigger breasts. When she grow up, she will have bigger breasts already."
Isaac:"Ohhhhh..... Only girls have breasts, right?"
Me:"Er, technically boys have breasts too. Just that boys breasts are smaller than girls' breasts. Like, see Papa, his breasts very small right? Oh, and we usually call boys' breasts "chest". Yes, something like that."
Isaac:" ... " *info*overload*

Then a few days ago... it happened again...
Isaac:"Mummy, Mummy, look! Shawna is just like you!"
Me:"Oh, really?"
Isaac:"Yes! She has boobies like your pump-milk-things!"
Me: *stunned* (even though it's happened before!) "Oh, you mean she has breasts like I do? They're called breasts, darling. Don't say boobies. Not nice. Who taught you this word?"
Isaac:"It's Angus! I told you before, you forget!"
Me:"Ah yes, Angus. And you forgot I told you that boobies are actually called breasts."
Isaac:"Oh yah, I forgot. Sorry Mummy."
Me:"It's okay. Just don't keep saying boobies okay?"
Isaac:"Okay, Mummy!"
29 November 2011 | Shawna @ 22 months

17 May 2011 | Shawna @ 16 months
So, does Shawna have boobies? Yes, indeed she does. Manage to pull out the above pics which show her cleavage, but is not too chao-gng (over-exposed). Most of our friends and family have noticed her very natural cleavage. It's so amazing. Who'd have thought that one can have a cleavage at such a young age?!

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Asher the lazy eater

Asher stares on in horror at Shawna licking her plate clean... | Pic taken on 7th April 2012

Asher and Shawna are as different as twins come. As you can see from their sizes, Shawna definitely eats more than Asher does. But then, anybody can easily eat more than Asher does, even a 10 month old, I'd say. That's coz Asher doesn't eat much at all.

While Shawna took to solids with great gusto, trying almost everything, lapped up the porridge, then rice, and now noodles and meat and vegetable... Asher just didn't eat. He survives mainly on the formula milk he drinks. Other than that, he doesn't seem interested in most solid food. When we fed him solid food, he used to gag, no matter the amount of food we fed him.

With most kids, when they take to solids slower, people just wave it off as a "late" bloomer. But with a twin sister around, people kind of assume that you should be more or less the same pace as the twin, if not, something must be wrong. Everyone was very concerned. Were Asher's tonsils too big? Is his tongue stuck to the bottom of his mouth? Are his teeth too small? His tongue too short? Too big?
The boy and his chocolate cake | Pic taken on 30th December 2011
Rubbish. You know what gets his mouth open? CHOCOLATE. This boy luurrrves chocolate. He had his first taste of chocolate when he was about 18 months old, in Margaret River, Perth, Australia. Chocolate from the Margaret River Chocolate Factory. You could feed him a whole chunk of chocolate, and he'd know how to bite it, chew and swallow it. So there's nothing wrong with his teeth or his tongue or his throat or whatever. He's just inherited my love for chocolate - though he's much more extreme than me!

He's just a lazy eater with a sweet tooth. He used to only take cereal for his meals. And it's not cornflakes kinda cereal, it's the Nestum, Quaker Oats kinda cereal - the really runny and gooey stuff. He likes gooey stuff, apparently. Just swallow. Asher's improved a bit lately. He likes spaghetti, chinese thin noodles, and sometimes takes rice. Recently, we even resorted to giving him "spaghetti rice" - rice with spaghetti sauce on it. Though with him, we tend to have to cut up the noodles and meat a bit, coz the lazy eater him just swallows his food.

Comparatively, Shawna and Isaac are much easier to feed.
No, she didn't eat ALL of those...
Above two pix: The kids first taste of hawker food. | Pix taken on 19th February 2012
Shawna likes most food but we realise that she likes variety. She may love the food you're giving her, but if you give it to her too often, she starts to reject it. So even though she likes rice, she started rejecting it for awhile. Until I realised that she wants variety. So now, I make sure we stock up on different types of pasta: abc pasta, macaroni, angel hair, spaghetti, the shells, etc. 

Isaac has his favourites that are good fall-backs: chicken rice, char siew rice, pizza, spaghetti... He used to be really picky till he started childcare, so he's pretty good with eating most stuff now.

It's good that they all like spaghetti. We're ready for a trip to Australia now :) kekeke...

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Backpost... safer?

Recently with all the kidnapping scare, I've been wondering if I have been too open on my blog, about our lives. Am I giving away too many details about ourselves? Is my blogging endangering my children's lives? One good habit I have, I suppose, is that I try not to blog about "upcoming events". I usually blog about events that have past. I remember a picnic we had several years ago with some close friends of mine, and I took pictures of the kids playing. My friend turned to me and said:"So I guess we'd see these pictures on your blog only after a few months? Or maybe... next year?" :p
Well, unfortunate as it may be that I am so'late' in my blogging (blogging about something which happened months ago), it has appeared to be a positive safety "feature" in these scary times. hehehe...

So without further ado, I present to you my latest backpost - New Stuff for the New Year!

Hmmm... "latest backpost" - oxymoron?! :)

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

How the Grinch Stole Breastfeeding

I love Dr Seuss books, and when I posted "Breastfeeding, the Dr Seuss style" the last time (which Andrea sent me), she sent me another one! This one below!

How the Grinch Stole Breastfeeding

By Chuck Dufano, WIC breastfeeding coordinator with the Johnson County Health Department in Iowa City, Iowa (with thanks to Dr. Seuss).

Every Who down in Who-ville liked breastfeeding a lot
But the Grinch,
Who lived just north of Who-ville,
Did NOT!

The Grinch hated breastfeeding -- no matter what season,
Now, please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason.
It could be, he thought, there wasn't enough nourishment.
It could be, perhaps, to see it caused him embarrassment.
But I think that the most likely reason above others
Was he thought the Who-kids would love only their mothers.

And the more the Grinch thought all about breastfeeding
The more the Grinch thought, "I must stop this whole thing!
Why for fifty three years I've put up with it. Now,
I must stop these Who-kids from breastfeeding...but how?"

Then he got an idea.
An awful idea!
The Grinch
Got a wonderful, awful idea!

"I know just what to do!" the Grinch laughed in his throat.
And made a quick Santy Claus hat and a coat.
And he grabbed a big briefcase with great Grinchy pep.
"In this get-up I look like a formula rep!"

All the Whos were dreaming sweet dreams without care
When he came to the first little house on the square.
He climbed down the chimney while the Whos still slept
Then off to the nursery on his belly he crept.

He took all the bra pads and breast shells.
He took all the bags for expressed milk as well
He took the diaper log and breastfeeding diary
He took the La Leche League book from the library.

In their place he put powdered Enfamil cans
And Prosobee concentrate for soy-formula fans.
Next to it all with a great heavy lug
He placed a gallon store-bought filtered water jug.

"And NOW," grinned the Grinch, "the last thing to dump
Is the electric double breastfeeding pump!"
And the Grinch grabbed the pump, and he started to shove.
When he heard the small sound like the coo of a dove.
He turned around fast and saw a small Who.
Little Cindy-Lou Who, who was not more than two.

She stared at the Grinch and said "Santy Claus, why,
Why are you taking our breastpump, why?"

But you know, that old Grinch was so smart and so slick
He thought up a lie, and he thought it up quick!
"Why my sweet little tot," the fake Santy Claus lied,
"There's something wrong with the wiring inside.
So I'm taking it home to my workshop, my dear,
I'll fix it up there.  Then I'll bring it back here."

But Cindy-Lou Who started to fret.
"Oh, my Daddy's going to be awfully upset!
He feeds baby mommy's milk when she is away,
He does this at least two or three times every day!"

"You mean your Daddy can feed baby breastmilk?"
The Grinch asked Cindy-Lou.
"Oh, yes," she replied,
And he changes diapers, too!
He gives the baby a bath and they play peek-a-boo.
When mommy's nursing he brings her a cup of water or two!"

Now the Grinch stood puzzling and puzzling 'til his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before.
"Maybe breastfeeding," he thought, shouldn't make me moan.
"Maybe breastfeeding...perhaps...isn't mother's job alone!"

And now that his heart was no longer bitter
He became the official Who-baby sitter.
And to all those who listened to his heeding

He...he HIMSELF!
The Grinch encouraged breastfeeding!


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