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stuff best described as not safe for parents

stuff best described as not safe for parents

A trip down to crazydreamtown

I get the craziest dreams when I’m pregnant, and usually in the last trimester. I can’t say why this is so, maybe It’s my mommy bear instinct going into hyperdrive. So there’s this level of crazy dreams which hangs around in the vicinity of mildly bizarre and this other level that’s way deep into crazy dream town. And in the land of #crazydreamtown, I think this one takes the cake.

Want to hear it? Of course you don’t. But I feel like I need to talk about it; it’s part of my process to come to terms with what my subconscious has done to me so here goes.

I was watching Mean Girls with the husband the other night which led to a conversation about Tina Fey and how she got slashed as a kid. I then spent the next hour or so reading about her horrific experience feeling truly sick in the gut. (note to self: DON’T READ ABOUT KID SLASHING ATTACKS AT NIGHT. OR EVER.)

On retrospect, the crazy dream was like me asking for it but even so, I need to have a word with my dream machine about compartmentalisation.

Later that night, I went to bed and dreamt that Truett got slashed in a back alley somewhere and by the time I got there, he was already gone. I held him in my arms feeling the weight of every bad feeling that existed int he world, plus a little bit more.

That was the single most helpless, terrifying, awful feeling I’ve ever had up to this point in my life and in the dream, I pretty much lost it. I went total batshitcrazy until I woke up, whereupon I discovered that it was all just a dream. Oh, the sweet, sweet relief of finding out it wasn’t real? I just sat there on the bed trying to wrap my brain around it before running into Tru’s room to hold him just to be sure.

You’d think that was the end of it but no. So that was like 4 in the morning and I went back to bed in the aftermath of a crazy dream…only to continue an even crazier dream. This time, it was like a reenactment of the first dream, except I managed to get there in time before Tru got slashed and I was like “RUN, TRU, RUN!! GET OUT OF HERE NOWWWW GO GO GO!!!!!” But obviously the slasher still needed someone to slash right, so I guess it had to be me since being heavily pregnant puts some severe restrictions on my mobility and speed. I got slashed pretty bad but I knew I couldn’t die because then Theo wouldn’t make it. In my dream, I actually willed myself to survive until the husband got there and he was all “OMG hang in there babe, I’m getting the ambulance” and I said “There’s no time, you have to get the baby out NOW, just do it, if not he’s not going to make it” and he was like “Are you crazy? I’m not performing a c-section on you here or anywhere ever” and I started yelling “DON’T BE SUCH A BABY, JUST DO IT NOW! OR GIVE ME A SHARP OBJECT AND I’LL DO IT MYSELF!!”

Turns out that was the point where I woke up (thank you, subconscious!) and I didn’t have to perform a c-section on myself without anesthesia.

I woke up the husband and told him about the dream and he started laughing his head off. “Knowing you, give it another 15 minutes in the dream and you’d probably have done it yourself,” was all he said.

He’s right, I would totally have done it in real life (or at least died trying, quite literally), which is possibly the craziest part of all this.

Also, Truett got extra hugs for the rest of the day, which he thought was cool. He doesn’t know why though.

stuff best described as not safe for parents

Win, Lose or Draw

We’ve been having a blast playing this drawing game with the kids lately, sort of like pictionary but with less rules – it’s just me and the husband taking turns to draw random objects and the kids are supposed to guess what they are. First one who guesses correctly gets the point.

Neither of us have any artistic talents to speak of so some of their guesses are pretty wild and also laugh out loud hilarious.

May I present specimen A, one of the funniest rounds.

win lose or draw

They got most of the easy ones like tree, car, tv, apples, basic animals.

And then I drew a whale. Which, might I add, looks EXACTLY like a whale. 

Truett: What’s that? A WORM! With a tree on it’s head! A worm crawling into a small tree!

Kirsten: It’s a whale lah. That’s the water from the head, not a tree.

Kirsten: 1, Truett: 0

Next round, a necklace. 

Kirsten: I know, it’s grapes!

Me: Nope, try again.

Truett: Small grapes and big grapes.

Me: No, forget grapes. Here’s a clue, it’s something you can wear on your neck.

Kirsten: It looks like grapes, see it’s round and small. You can’t wear grapes on your neck, mom!

Me: It’s not…Ok fine, call it grapes.

Kids: 1, Me: 0

Next round, baby Finn. 

Kirsten: JESUS!

Truett: Ya, baby Jesus!

Me: Hahahaha. It was meant to be baby Finn but ok, Jesus would get you the point too.

Truett: How can this be baby Finn? He can walk now, how can he be wrapped up like a baby?

Me: Fine, smartypants.

Kids: 2, Me: 0

Final round, oranges. 

Truett: BREASTS!

Me: What?? No!! These are not breasts.

Truett: Looks like breasts what. Breasts are round with a dot in the middle.

Me: *trying to keep a straight face* Please don’t call them breasts, I wouldn’t be drawing breasts for you, these are oranges. People don’t draw breasts ok guys, it’s not appropriate to draw body parts like breasts, penises, backsides…

Truett: I don’t know how to draw penis or backside, you know?

Kirsten: SO EASY!! Backside just draw like a round “W’ like that. *proceeds to demonstrate an air drawing with her finger*

Me: *not succeeding with my straight face attempts* No, please guys, no drawing backsides in public or anywhere for that matter. People will think I taught you that. Nothing wrong with those parts but it’s not appropriate to draw them. Ok? Come on, help me out here.

Kids: *they clearly think this is hilarious* Ok, we will draw a lot for you.


stuff best described as not safe for parents

Z is for…Zaguan

Baby Finn was having a bit of a rash this morning so we brought him in for a check at the nearby clinic. He’s ok, btw – I was afraid it was chicken pox but turns out that it’s just a minor heat rash after a day out at Adventure Cove, phew!

Which brings me to the real point of all this. The clinic. Most family GP clinics these days come equipped with a little play area for kids and in theory, it seems like a really nice idea. You have to wait in a crowded clinic for 30 minutes with a sick, crabby toddler and suddenly, he’s not crabby anymore because he spots the toy corner – a magical wonderland of fun and happy toys.

play area

In the real world though, these colorful little corners of fun quickly turn into a huge cesspool of germs. A major germ fest where germs of all varieties come to play. The kid with HFMD just stuck a handful of blocks in his mouth. Germs! And then there’s the other kid who just left a trail of mucus on a bunch of other toys. More germs! Basically if I were a germ, I’d make my way to one of these clinic play areas for a bit of germy toddler love.

The moment I stepped in and registered baby Finn at the doctor’s, his very high-tech toy-detection homing device immediately located the toy corner.



I was determined not to let him go anywhere near the toys because he was there with a possibly fake case of chicken pox I didn’t need to go home with a very real case of whatever combination of germs existed in that corner.

I tried distracting him with other stuff. How about a brochure about acne? Oh look! Super fun medical books! Ok, fine, I’ll give you my equally shiny iPhone. But all he wanted was a toy from the germy toy corner. Reluctantly, I picked up the least germy-looking toy and passed it to him.

photo 2

Which was when I discovered this abomination.


Looks like your basic educational alphabet abacus toy for educating kids right? Wrong.

First of all, what is this?


Also, there’s this. X is for Xebec. Xe-WHAT?


Hang on, I just googled it and apparently, it’s an ancient Mediterranean sailing ship. Okayyy.

And then finally, we come to Z. Ok, really? Out of all the wonderful Z words to choose from like zoo, zebra, zip, zero, zigzag, heck, even zugzwang and you go with zaguan. Bet you’ve never seen that word before. Unless you Spanish, then um, Nacho Libre!


Alright kids, today’s show was brought to you by the letter Z. For Za-you know what? Forget it, you’re probably never going to use that word in a sentence like ever.

stuff best described as not safe for parents

Getting peed on is not fun. But apparently, it’s funny.

baby finn

Usually after baby Finn’s bath every morning, I do this thing where I put him on my bed and tickle him senseless. Right before I blow raspberries on his pudgy tummy. And munch on his chubby cheeks.

It’s the best time to do these things because a) he smells divine and b) it’s hard to resist with all his delicious rolls of baby fats staring at me.

If you didn’t know better, you’d think that he hates it because he’s shrieking and flopping around like a fish but I’m pretty sure that he actually likes it. Every time I stop, he eyes me with his cheeky grin and flashes me with another juicy baby thigh. Like “c’mon momma, more raspberries!!” So I gladly oblige.

The past couple of days, the little guy has been down with a massive viral fever so he’s been pretty stoned out but he looked a little better today and I thought I’d cheer him up with some post-bath tickling time. There I was trying to coax a giggle out of him with my super exciting raspberry blowing and all he could muster was a weak smile. So I figured ok, maybe I need more enthusiasm here and I buried my face into his tum tums when I felt something warm spreading all across the top of my shirt.

Sure enough, I was getting full scale peed on.

I didn’t have time to think so I jumped up and tried to get as far away as possible from the stream of pee but without my shirt absorbing the impact, it shot up into the air and landed everywhere. It was now my turn to shriek and flail as I tried to grab a nearby towel to contain the damage.

And I thought baby Finn was too sick to laugh but he must have thought the whole thing was a huge joke because he broke into a series of chuckles every time I shrieked.

The things I do to make this dude laugh.

stuff best described as not safe for parents

The League of Judgy Pants Parents

I have one pet peeve that drives me nuts and it’s what I like to call The League of Judgy Pants Parents. They are a special breed of parents who like to sit around on their high horses feeling all superior and passing judgment on everyone else.

Like this open letter to Moms on the iPhone going around on Facebook, which sums up what I’m talking about.

Why do some folks feel like it’s ok to look at a microscopic fraction of someone else’s life and immediately decide that they’re a lousy parent?

I bring my kids to the playground fairly frequently and do you know how boring it is to watch kids mucking about at a playground? VERY. They climb up the stairs, whizz down the slide, climb up the other way, back down the slide, and again and again and again. The first day I do this, i’m all “Good job!! Nice sliding there, buddy! WOOOOOT!!!” for all of 5 minutes. And then after a while, even the kids get bored with all my woo-ing so they look at me like “Ok mom, just relax and go chill out by that bench aight, I’m hanging out with my friends here.”

Imagine doing this 3 times a week for a couple of years. The woo-ing gets considerably less enthusiastic as time goes by.

When I’m excruciatingly bored, my mind learns to adapt and do this this thing called paying selective attention. Every few minutes, they wave or run over to give me a hug or yell for me to look at this new trick they learnt and I reciprocate by being interested in what they’re doing. Which takes up about maybe 30% of the time. The rest of the time, I have my trusty iPhone to save the day. I get to reply a few quick emails, do a bit of work, read some blogs, browse cat pictures, watch a couple of youtube videos, that sort of thing.

It’s a nice romantic notion that we should cherish EVERY SINGLE SECOND of our time with the kids. But I’m here to tell you that it’s a load of horse bollocks.

I spend in the region of let’s see, 24 hours with the kids (at least one kid at any given time) in a day and I would go batshitcrazy if I had to be cherishing every one of those moments.

See, in an average day, I have about 2 hours max of ooh-so-sweet kind of precious moments, which include singing to the kids, story time, tickle sessions, family chats, snuggling on the bed with lots of hugs and kisses. Another 5-6 hours are spent on functional maintenance type chores like driving them around, cooking, feeding, cleaning up, bathing, putting them to bed. Maybe an hour or so where the baby is asleep and I have some me-time to get some work done, write a blog post, edit some photos.

I have the privilege of working from home so I get to be around for the kids and manage my time around them, for which I’m immensely grateful. But that means that while I’m physically around for the kids most of the time, my brain has to be at multiple places at various times throughout the day. Sometimes when they’re at the playground, I have to be on Facebook (for work, y’all). Or when I have to take an urgent conference call, I put on Disney Junior and tell them to be quiet while mommy’s on the phone.  It’s not pretty all the time but it’s something that works for us.

Maybe I’m not giving them my undivided attention 100% of the time, but I get to carpe the crap out of the moments that matter. When they discover a dead lizard by the pavement, I can put aside my work for a moment and marvel at the grossness of a lizard corpse with them in the middle of the afternoon.

So excuse me for not getting on the guilt trip bandwagon when The League of Judgy Pants Parents decide that being on the iPhone at the playground is a cardinal sin.

And if I see someone giving me the stink eye the next time I pull out my phone with the kids in tow, someone is going to get punched in the face.

stuff best described as not safe for parents

心想事成, 笑口常開

cny 2013

It’s the first day of the Lunar New Year and we’re off spending time with loved ones. I love the festivities and rowdiness of the new year, hanging out with my tribe and making merry. The great thing is that there are enough people to fuss over the baby so I can enjoy my dinner and be all “Ah sure, you’re welcome to carry him for as long as you wish. In fact, no, I insist, OK JUST TAKE HIM.”

On the downside, I. Can’t. Stop. Eating. Bakkwa. When I pick up the first piece, I have a mental cap in my mind of 10 small squares (my mom cuts them up into harmless-looking little 2 inch squares) but I usually exceed the limit by 25.

And that’s just the bakkwa. There’s also the pineapple tarts, love letters, almond cookies and kueh bangkit just sitting on my kitchen table calling out to be eaten. I can go a whole year without eating them but during the new year, it’s like a tradition to stuff my face with sugary treats. There are like entire generations of Chinese people counting on me to eat more bakkwa in order to continue this proud tradition.

Guess I’ll oblige.

But before I resume my merrymaking ways, here’s wishing you guys a Happy Chinese New Year. May 2013 be the year that all your dreams come true and I hope it’ll be one filled with love and laughter.

not feeling so supermom, stuff best described as not safe for parents

Toilet Training – fun times

All my life, I’ve always preferred vaginas to penises. Wait, let me clarify that. What I meant was that I’ve always preferred HAVING a vagina than a penis. Not that I’ve ever had a penis for comparison but it’s just that I’ve never wanted to have one.

Like we can sit cross-legged for hours without squashing any sensitive bits. There’s no obstruction when we wear pants. And no need to worry that it’s too big or too small because I’ve never seen women fuss about the size of their lady parts. Also, penises seem to itch a lot more. Why else do dudes always have a need to scratch/adjust/grab their junk in public?

Except for when it comes to toilet training.

Boys have an inherent advantage in the peeing department, so much so that it’s starting to make me a little envious. When boys pee, they just need to follow the 5 Step Rule – whip it out, aim it, fire it, shake it off and put it back.

Girls, on the other hand, are a nightmare to toilet train.

When Kirsten did her first pee in the toilet bowl, she wanted to do it standing “like kor kor”. I told her it was impossible unless she wanted it to end up all over her legs. The only way to do it was to have full-on butt contact with the toilet seat, which is fine at home but very tricky in public toilets.

One time we were at a coffeeshop and the moment she walked into the toilet, she was all “EWWW SO GROSS. Mommy you wash it.”


I’d do a lot of things for the kids, like donate a kidney or a retina, but there has to be a line and from where I stand, that line is scrubbing a pee-stained public toilet with my bare hands in preparation for contact with her royal bottom.

We settled on a compromise of a half-squat where I had to prop up her thighs in mid-air and she basically peed all over my hands.

And then there’s the wiping, which is an art form in itself. It has got to be done right – front to back, with a double-folded 2-ply square of toilet paper in order to cover the right amount of surface area. Because you can’t shake dry or air dry a vagina.

So you’d think that after all that trouble, the actual peeing would be a breeze. With Truett, the downside is the aiming issue which does take a bit of target practice to perfect, so I was expecting that Kirsten would at least be able to pee straight into the toilet bowl without any fuss.

Um, not quite.

For some reason, she’s got a special skill which allows her to pee up into the air like a fountain while sitting on the toilet bowl. Instead of going down and in like most regular people, it goes up and out onto the floor. It’s quite a remarkable talent and I couldn’t believe my eyes the first time I witnessed it. I’m just not big on having to wash my toilet several times a day.

Long story short, she’s physically capable of (attempting) to pee in a toilet bowl but I’m reluctant to take her off pull ups because let’s face it, it’s so much easier just changing diapers.