Monday, April 30, 2012

How do your kids use their savings?

This rebellious teen gives me surprises almost every day.

Something wasn't very right when Wyng was in his Qo Qo's room without being chased away by Hoe. This is quite unusual for these two brothers.  Sensing something was cooking, I walked to where Wyng was standing, which was near Hoe's bedside table.  Lo and behold! I saw a a new red box of gadget on the table.  Hoe must be showing off his new stuff to his little brother when I spotted both of them acting suspiciously.

As I opened it, I interrogated Hoe how he got that set of headphones.  Spilling the beans, he told me he bought it with his savings at one of the shops in town near his school.  Apparently, he went to the shop with his friend.  I over-reacted and jumped to the fact that he was having so much of savings to spend on that gadget when he kept asking me to give him money to top-up his prepaid phone.  And, he did it secretly without Mom's knowledge.  His reasoning is that he uses his own savings for the stuff he wants, what's wrong with that?

After a few hours, Mom gained her composure and convinced herself that saving to get something is not really wrong afterall. The question is whether the purchase is something useful or not. Would teens care whether the things they yearn for is useful or not? I doubt so, especially my kid.  As long as his lust is satisfied, he is fine regardless of the means of getting it.  As for doing it behind my back, he knows very well that Mom is not going to succumb to his desire by buying him the headphone, why bother to ask me?

To prevent another 'blood-boiling', take a deep breath first, assess the situation, then decide whether to 'shoot' or not.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Is the kid too young to explain science?

Wyng and I were watching astro's tutor channel yesterday.  I chose to watch UPSR's BM for a while when he pleaded to me that he wanted to watch the SPM channel where a tutorial on Science was on.  Not wanting to pour cold water when he is an eager beaver to learn something educational, I gave in to his pleading.

One of the questions asked in this quiz segment is on variation.  He got the answer correct. Well, probably it was just a wild guess or he may have seen this programme before and could remember the answer.  Another further question on variation was being asked. This time, the question was to choose which one from the answers from A to D is a discontinuous variation.  Out of the options, he chose the correct answer which was 'finger print'.

Mom ignorantly popped a question, " Why is finger print discontinuous?"
Wyng answered matter-of-factly, "Finger prints don't change, it's permanent, that's why it is discontinuous. They don't keep changing."

Mom hates to admit it but she fully understands Wyng's explanation of the term 'discontinuous'. Kids just can see things so clearly compared to we,adults or Mom was just too slow to be digesting scientific facts.

Lesson from the kid : It was truly a simple lesson about variation from the television, made easier by Wyng. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Do you want to grow up younger like Benjamin Button?

This posting was posted on my old lost blog on 25 April 2009. 

Most of us wish that we could grow younger as we age. I thought so too but after watching this award winning Benjamin Button movie, I've changed my mind.

Who would want to spend the last moments of their life being cuddled in the arm by your loved ones? And worse still, you have your last few words which could not be spoken or rather understood by your loved ones.

Who would want to be your kids or grandkids' playmates when you are supposed to be nurturing and caring for them?

Who want to be mothered or fathered by your spouse as you grow old?

You should watch this movie to get the answers. For those who might not know, this movie won awards for the best visual effect and best makeup. What I like about this movie is the transformation from young to old, not just cosmetically but also physically.

Oh yes! Brad Pitt is such a hunk. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Is your kid meticulous?

Always very enthusiastic when it comes to new technical and hands-on venture at home, Wyng voluntarily helped Daddy to assemble the new armchair.

"Wait, must count first," he stopped Daddy, who was pleasantly taken aback by his thoroughness, from beginning the assembly before counting the number of screws, nuts and bolts to make sure they are in the quantity as written on the instruction guide.

Watching him counting them painstakingly, Daddy waited patiently for him to complete the audit.

"Yeah, correct," Wyng confirmed.  He was worried that the number of nuts and bolts are incorrect and that they couldn't assemble the chair.
Counting to make sure they are correct
He carefully referred to the instruction guide for each part assembly.  Except for his lack of strength in locking the parts, he did a fairly good job as an assistant.

Assembly in progress
He is meticulous when it comes to such task but rather hopeless when it comes to his school matters.  He tends to forget what page of homework to do, which book to bring or what exactly were the instructions given by the teachers.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Is your kid desperate for computer?

Mine is. After numerous attempts to hack the computer successfully and later being discovered, Mom has learnt her lesson and has ever since been wiser and more vigilant.  Once bitten (definitely more than once) twice shy,  Mom has not forgotten to log off now whenever Hoe is expected to be lurking waiting for any opportunity for Mom's mind to fail or slack.

One evening, Hoe was found busy in the study room, attempting to revive the dinosaur laptop of ours.  This ambitious attempt was aborted  by Mom, of course.  He said if the dinosaur can still work, it will be HIS. Wait a minute. Who has given him the green light to possess the laptop even though its functionality is still uncertain?  He was reprimanded for making that assumption.  What if it works? I do not know how far was his patience taking him to try to boot the laptop. All I know was he didn't manage to go further from there.  The laptop remains on the shelf, collecting dust.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Is there such a thing as brain freeze?

While window-shopping, Wyng walked next to me and held my hand.

Wyng: Mommy, do you know that there is no such thing as a brain freeze?

Mom : Yeah, the brain doesn't freeze. (Mom has to say this as it is a fact, isn't it?)

Wyng: It's just the blood vessels at the roof of the mouth that expand and when blood rush in the blood vessels, we feel like a pain. Our brain does not have any pain sensors. So there is no brain freeze.

Mom's mind is thinking,"Really?". Thanks to all the science documentary programmes and books that he reads. Wyng really gets me thinking and googling to find out the scientific truth of what he said.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Is the sun the smallest star?

When I created the title of this blog, I didn't mean to say real lessons given by my kid to me.  But, Wyng has been feeding me 'lessons' or pieces of knowledge, predominantly about science, whenever he learns them.  He learns all these from his books as well as the television programmes he watches.

"Do you know that the sun is the smallest?" Here goes another one of his questions to me, always trying to test Mom's IQ.

"Huh?" Mom was a little startled.

"You know,right? The sun is a star. And it's the smallest star of all the stars in the space." Wyng explained factually.

"How do you know? From TV or the book?" Mom started to get curious.

"TV la..." was his response.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

What is the cause of his diarrhea?

He would die for a cone of ice-cream. He asks for it whenever I take him out, whether it's for grocery shopping, for breakfast, lunch, dinner or any outing.  At times, when Mom had bought him one, he would ask Daddy for it on the same day.  So, he got 2 in the same day! It's like oxygen to him.  It's like candies to most kids. He never gets bored of eating ice-cream.

Well, ice-cream is still better than the junk potato chips or even candies, Mom will buy a tub or two of ice-cream and store in the fridge.  Taking it on a daily basis, sometimes 2 cups in a day if I don't stop him, the tub is gone quickly.

Still perplexed as to the reason Wyng still complains about having sporadic diarrhea at school, it struck my mind that he takes ice-cream at least once a week. At times, he could be taking it once daily for a few days consecutively especially when there is storage in the fridge.  Now, the puzzle seems to be solved.

Ice-cream is made of dairy products! This boy is mildly lactose intolerant and no wonder he still gets diarrhea despite stopping him from his breakfast milk. This is definitely going to be bad news for Wyng.  From now on, ice-cream is a 'controlled food'.

Friday, April 13, 2012

When the kid's eating habits change

From preschool days, Wyng had always shunned egg yolk each time I serve him hard-boiled egg.  It came to a point when he totally rejected hard-boiled egg.  He didn't even like soft-boiled egg until recently, something like last year.  He slowly was able to accept soft-boiled egg.  Ironically, he has no problem with omelette or scrambled egg.  Maybe, he just didn't like to see egg yolk separated from egg white!

Then came one fine day, when there was an extra omelette that Mom cooked for Qo Qo.  I had asked him to take the egg since Qo Qo would not be back home for lunch.  He already had his egg, by the way.  He proceeded to scoop the watery egg yolk and sipped it. And he did that until he finished all the egg yolk!

Wyng doesn't take cheese but when we went for pizza the other day, he sprinkled a lot of cheese powder on his pizza after watching Qo Qo and Daddy did so.  In fact, he loved it. Funny, there was a table not far from us where the middle-eastern guy actually poured cheese powder straight from the bottle by removing the cap so as the cheese powder poured freely right onto his pizza.

So, Mom had to make sure he promised to take cheese the next time Mom serves him anything with cheese.

Spaghetti..he wasn't crazy about this food until this year when he asked me to cook it for him for his lunch. Previously, he didn't want to even try whenever we had spaghetti outside.  He had home-cooked spaghetti a couple of times at his aunty's house, out of no choice as that was the only food being served by aunty. Since then, I believe he started to develop a liking to it.  Now,he seemed to be crazy about it.  He frequently asks for spaghetti as his lunch.  But, he hates the mushroom that goes with it.

For dining out, he used to love claypot chicken rice. Now, he rejects it. Oh gosh...His favourite food at hawker stalls now is dried pan mee (flat noodle), minus the anchovies and black fungus.  So crazy is he about this food, that he will ask for it each time we stepped into a hawker food eatery, whether it's for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Looks like this boy's eating habits are going through some changes, again.  Lesson for Mom is to keep trying to offer him food which he used to reject.  He may have developed some liking to certain food.  Once, he has tasted it and likes it, there'll be no stopping him, based on his pattern, so far.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

When your kids are growing faster than you think

It is when:

1)He is wearing adult-sized clothes. My kid is wearing pants size 31 at the age 14+ (14 years and 4 months to be exact).  Hoe is not fat but he is just 'thick' and fleshy.  His limbs are heavy with lots of flesh.  The same goes for his slightly bulging tummy which he is trying to keep it flatten.

2)You keep buying shoes for them. Wyng outgrows his shoes much faster than Mom realises.  Kids' size shoes don't fit him anymore. He may probably be able to wear the maximum kids' size for just a few more months.  He is now wearing the smallest adult size I can find in the market.

Hoe doesn't fit his old sneakers and old school shoes anymore.  Mom doesn't realise this until the day when he was having problem choosing an old pair of sneakers for the Qing Ming festival.  None of the old shoes and sneakers fit him except for the pair he currently wears for his sports activities.  So, all those unfit shoes have to be cleared from the shoe rack.

3)  Your kid chooses his own clothes.  Hoe, in his teen, begins to demand for t-shirt of his liking.  He prefers t-shirt with humorous wordings.  Gone were the days when Mom just buys whatever she likes without even checking with Hoe.  Now, Mom has to make sure whatever she shops for her teen kid will be liked by him.  Jerseys, especially those with football club embroidered on them, are his favourite.

4) Your kid would not abide to your authoritarian commands.  Hoe, in his rebellious teen era, never fails to raise questions whenever an instruction or strict command is given. No longer will he do exactly as Mom says.     How I wish he could be more obedient? Sigh...Sad to say,up to this point, Mom has to admit that she has yet to find the best way to handle this defiant child.  I just can't help but sum up that teenage drives me up the wall.

5) Your kid, like most kids of this modern era, loves the loud, rapping music blaring from the radio.  He loves Hitz FM, much to the dislike of Mom who normally tunes in to Light & Easy in the car.  If he has his own choice, he will play all the latest noisy songs.

The lesson is for Mom is to catch up with these growing kids, if not faster than them or else you will be out of their world.  Realising these also mean that age is slowly but certainly creeping closer to us.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Do you feel guilty if you don't cook for your kids?

I do, especially when the reason for not cooking is not due to my busy schedule.  I only cook lunch for my kids as dinner is taken care of by my Mom.  She's already going to be in her 80's but she insists on fulfilling this noble duty of providing food for her grandchildren, my children, while she is still able.

In order not to feel guilty, I cook for them, even just a simple fried egg meal.  It's is still a home-cooked meal, much better compared to those MSG-laden food.  After each round of cooking, I feel great that I have once again, fulfilled my role as a mother.  What is my role, as a mother, if I don't cook when I can? With my flexible schedule, it would be lame to say 'not having time' as the reason for not cooking.

My satisfaction is even higher if I can cook up my own recipe for the kids.  Nothing is more fulfilling when the kids give me a thumbs up for a yummy meal.  That makes my day and motivates me to be more creative in terms of cooking up some new recipes for them.  It's all about passion, not so much of experience.  Cooking for a picky kid like Wyng is a challenge.  If and when he likes and finishes Mom's food real fast, it's worth the time spent in the kitchen, Mom deduces.  Mom cannot afford to be lazy since Wyng is still in his active growing stage.

Despite sticking to my obligation, I allow myself to take time off from cooking only one day on weekdays and during weekends.  My Saturday is packed from 10am to 5pm, so cooking if definitely not possible.  As for Sundays when we go out most of the time, if I ever cook, it will be just simple snacks since we normally have late breakfast.

Lesson learned from cooking for my kids: At the end of the day, the feeling of having done my part as a nutrition provider surpasses everything else.  I will feel bad not cooking when I can.  No other feelings is worse than this.  At least I can tell my kids in future when they've grown up, "I am a good mother who cooked for you."

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Do you still celebrate wedding anniversary?

Yes, we do. There are no romantic candle light dinner or roses as surprise gifts. We are contented with a meal celebration with the kids.

This year is unusual because Daddy had forgotten about this important day until Mom sms-ed him the day after the anniversary. Mom remembered on the important day itself but only at 8pm. Since it was a Tuesday and Daddy was working then, he suggested to have the late celebration on Saturday.

Each time whenever there is such celebration, the kids are the happiest. We ended up at a Japanese restaurant again.  We never get bored of dining at such restaurant, by the way. Mom does't really mind as long as the food is cooked! They are oriental anyway, Mom's favourite. Western is out! Mom doesn't have much liking to steaks, salad and its sauces and cheesy stuff.

We've never eaten at Sakae Sushi before. Last Saturday's was our first.  Strangely, we find the food not as good as Sushi King although Sakae Sushi originates from Japan which is supposed to be better.  What we like best is the 'self-service' ordering system where we picked our choices at a monitor screen at our table. The con about this system is the kids tend to order whatever they want conveniently without parent's approval as the monitor is just at the table, next to the water dispenser. The food is also served reasonably fast.

'Rong' (on the background), Wyng's Chinese name, the name of the Japanese restaurant
Self-service refill of water at each table, cool

Good for Hoe, he served our drink for us. This will make him 'contribute' his part for this meal.  Wyng, as usual, was so intrigued by the plates of sushi on the conveyor belt which is just right beside him.  He couldn't resist opening some of the covers of the sushis and at times, he mischieviously blocked the movement of the belt that he got a stern look from the chef working in the kitchen, just beside the belt.
'Bird-like' sushi ordered by Hoe

Sushi rice maker, discovered by Wyng
It was Wyng who pointed to us about this sushi maker in the kitchen.  Our table was just in front of the kitchen, next to the conveyor belt, as pictured here.  He was so excited each time blocks of rice dropped from the machine.  It was also an eye-opener for us.  We've never seen sushi being made by machine.

Curry Katsu Don for Hoe at RM15.90
This curry chicken rice which Hoe said was similar to the dish he had cooked before.

Soft crab sushi shared between Mom and Dad

Mom's Gyu Kinoko Don (beef) at RM15.90
Mom's rice tasted quite good although the presentation didn't impress us.
Sashimi, 5 pieces of them, at RM9.90
Emmm.. fresh and delicious.  Hoe and Daddy savoured their favourite salmon where Mom just observed.

Overall, Sakae's food lacks presentation, something we were surprised of.  The taste is reasonably good, so is the service.  However, we find that the variety of sushi on the belt cannot beat Sushi King.  At Sushi King, we were so enticed by some of the sushi that we couldn't resist and just picked them from the belt.  It's not the same here at Sakae.  We looked at the sushi, wondered what they were, put them back and didn't bother to try them.