Friday, February 22, 2013

Side trip 2013: Legoland

This is part of the 'Sidetrip' series, covering Kecil's most recent visit to meet up her Eyangs and Tante. You can scroll to the bottom of the post for complete lists of the series.

Straight from the zoo, we went across the border to Johor Bahru where we spent the night. The reason we stayed in JB had to do with our next destination, which was located in JB.
As for the journey across the border, well... unfortunately Mama was too busy wearing the 'tour-leader' hat to take pictures. We took the Woodlands checkpoint (first link between Singapore and Malaysia)  and it was VERY crowded. Let's just say it was with great relief this Mama located the hotel in which she (and the group) can rest.

As for plan for the day ....

After a good rest (and some pretty good dinner!), the following morning arrived bright and sunny. We had our breakfast and headed back to the bus terminal to take the bus to .....


The first Legoland in Asia, indeed! We took a normal bus from the terminal near the hotel, which took us to Legoland in time just before the door opened. Good thing it did since we still had to locate the lockers (for our overnight bags!). In any case, the next bus would only arrive 1 hour later, so...
Despite the 'early' hour, many people were already milling around, obviously waiting for the very same gates to open.

First order of the day was again to ensure everyone's mobility. There was no available scooters here, but wheelchairs were provided free of charge. Kecil 'refused' a stroller, but since her parents had learned from the previous day, we rented a stroller anyway, a double stroller no less! (for the rest of the bags!)
Needless to say, since Mama is always right, Kecil DID use the stroller eventually:

Next stop was the 'JUNIOR' driving school ...

... where she showed her mettle, driving around the course. This Mama thinks this girl is going to start driving WAAAy earlier than her Mama did. Ha! (There was actually an 'almost real' driving school for bigger kids. The course was waay more complicated that the junior one, complete with traffic signs, traffic light, pedestrian crossings, etc)

The next stop was the rescue academy, where, as a family team, Daddy, Kecil & Tante worked together to drive the fire engine and douse the 'fire' in the house. Needless to say, they were the winner, both in enthusiasm and in finishing the whole task.

We took a few more ride until Kecil got spooked by this indoor ride. So we thought it was a good time to stop for lunch. Somehow, we managed to pick the eatery that ONLY served hotdogs OR burgers. Grrr.... This Mama is balefully thinking of all the good local food she missed eating.... grrrrr....
Of course, Kecil was happy with the food. Grrr...

After lunch, it was time to explore the rest of the park. 

Well, actually before continuing on, Mama and Daddy took one wet ride (which Kecil refused, on account of being scared of going into the caves), so... after some splashes, here was Mama trying on one of the dryers provided ....

... before realising that the dryer needed some cash to operate. Ah well... never mind. We stick with solar power. Indeed, it soon got hotter as the day progressed on.
Not that it deterred Daddy & Kecil from taking more rides.

Boy, this kid is not scared of heights. She might be scared of going into the dark, but heights? Bring it on! Or horses....

or even dinosaurs ...

We took a short break from the heat and watched a 3D movie at the special effect cinema. Check out Daddy & Kecil in the matching 3D glasses:

By around midday, Tante and Eyang was positively wilting from the heat, so while they took a break from the heat, Daddy, Mama and Kecil set off to try the two dragons: the mini and the big roller coaster. T'was fun! Just not photogenic. Haha... Then we went looking for some cooling drinks with Tante:

It was a fun, fun day spent at Legoland. However, between the heat and the prospect of the still-long journey back to the hotel in Singapore, we decided to leave earlier than planned (aka taking an earlier bus). The decision did resulted in a mad dash through the souvenir shop (after yet another last crazy wild ride for Mama Daddy Kecil trio with no pic) just so we could catch the bus. Good thing at least we already knew what we wanted.

Here we were, doing our dashing towards the souvenir shop:

The trip back to the hotel itself was pretty much a breeze since we took a different route from the previous day, this time going through the Second Link. The only hiccup was the lack of taxi once we hit Singapore. Good thing our hotel was located VERY near an MRT station, which meant that we just had to take the long ride on the crowded train. It was really crowded due to the evening rush, but at least it was not yet dark (and most of our trip was on elevated tracks) so we could enjoy the view. Kecil loved taking the train!

Well... so that's our segment on the Legoland trip. There should be two more post before we conclude the whole 'Side trip' coverage. Do check out the rest of the trip by following the links below.

Sidetrip 2013: announcementsnow, zoo, Legoland (this one)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

3 years later...

The paint on the wall was no longer new,
The paint on the board was more chipped,
One of the see saws was already history,
And the Little Girl was no longer a baby.

But she still loved her see saw on her trips to the playground,
And 3 years on, this Mama is still taking her pictures
My, how time has passed.

With more poise (Kecil), better camera and technique (Mama), it was a different picture, yet still of the same Little Girl, same joy in her play, same laughter.

And of course, the best part, she actually looked like her Oma in her childhood days.

Even Oma concurred.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Mama & Kecil

It was really hot outside today, so, rather than going out (and come back with a headache), we stayed inside during the hottest part of the day, and made a reel of pics of Mama and Kecil.
As you can see, we both had fun. Even Daddy joined us for a quick shot:

Hihihi.... Now that Mama has a proper tripod, I think we are loving that corner of the house with the big mirror. At the same time, the reel above brought this Mama down memory lane, through pictures of Kecil and Mama together. Here's a few that I think have not made it here:

Ah... the days when Kecil was smaller, and lighter. Then she got bigger:

Despite the intellectual knowledge that kids grow up SOOOO fast, the truth can still come as a shock at times.

Here's to more girl & Mom bonding time, and of course, the gem of the day:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine!

A New Year greeting, in the form of a post card and a very cute drawing!, from a dear friend arrived not too long after new year. It was a timely reminder of the upcoming Valentine's day, grabbed as a convenient excuse for replying back.
With that reminder, this Mama was able to create a few pics for Vday, with the initial purpose of replying to that piece of mail.

Somehow, the objective got lost in the stack of papers on Mama's table as it expanded to also include Kecil's other friends.
Ah well... I guess we can always mail that one later today or something.

But here's the collection we got in preparation for V-day:

Kecil is bringing a bag of candies together with the greeting to Skool today. She seems to be very happy to be (finally) able to reciprocate some of the candies she's been getting from some of her friends.
Haha... sorry, Cil. This Mama just does not believe in stocking candies on daily basis, just for special occasions only, yes?

And of course, a final image, with all 4 family members, as part of Mama's effort to get a good FAMILY picture:

There we are, all four of us, in silhouette, which Kecil recognised. Let's try again next time with some face, shall we?

Happy Valentine to all!

Many of the effects (including the text and those 'love-is-in-the-air' hearts) are done using PicMonkey. If you are still looking for inspiration, head on to their Pinterest page and create some magic! Cheers!

Monday, February 11, 2013

CNY Reel

Lunar New Year suddenly appeared, and this Mama was unprepared.
Worse still, she forgot to bring the camera when we went watching the big Lion and Dragon dance in town!
So it was a quick snap at the front yard, of Kecil and her Chinese-inspired outfit.
Just too bad that her cute little buns were already unwound, and the Dog not co-operating (hence, the mop!).
We still do hope for a joyous, prosperous new year ahead, both for us and for all of you.
So.. in that spirit, we here wish you, a prosperous Lunar New Year ahead!


Friday, February 8, 2013

Side Trip 2013: Zoo

This is part of the 'Sidetrip' series, covering Kecil's most recent visit to meet up her Eyangs and Tante. You can scroll to the bottom of the post for complete lists of the series.

On the second day, since we have already crossed 'snow' from our list, we went on to the next listed item: the Zoo.
This Mama realises that yes, Kecil has been to many zoos/safaris (see here, here and here) so far, but I guess it's just fun to bring the kiddo to see the animals. It's a totally different feeling to be up close with the real animal rather than watching them on TV or read about them from a picture book.

Singapore Zoo, although located in the city state of Singapore, is definitely not a zoo within an urban setting. It's located quite far from 'civilisation'. We had to take a special bus to go there. The trip took a while, but it was definitely worth the lush greeneries that greeted us at our destination.

One would expect real animals in the zoo, but even before we pass the entrance gate, a few 'fake animals' already greeted us, like the pictures of Panda (the zoo had real life panda on display when we were there!), the giant pink snake (decoration for the upcoming Chinese New Year), and of course, the giraffes! 

Fear not, however, for the real animals did wait for us right after the gate, such as these cute otters:

But before we move deeper into the park, we decided that we needed some 'help'. You might notice our bags in the first picture. We were a wee bit over-prepared for a simple jaunt at the zoo, no? 
Indeed. That was because we were planning to continue on to Johor Bahru straight from the zoo. Hence the over night bags. There were lockers available near the entrance, which we gladly used for our bags. The lockers came in different sizes and the price was quite reasonable. It's good that we come early, however, since there weren't so many of them available.

I so need to have these at home. Isn't the giraffe pattern adorable?
More on facilities, even after depositing the bigger bags in the lockers, we were still carrying some bulky stuff. So... more help was needed, in the form of ...... cute, Eyang-operated, yellow scooter:

Oh yeah. With its handy basket, the scooter was certainly useful to lug our stuff around. Kecil was certainly not averse to having her bag carried by someone else. You can see her pink bag in the basket there. Of course, the bonus point with the scooter was also that Eyang did not need to walk too far.
Note: these scooters must have been marketed quite well, for we saw a lot of people zipping around in them, not only those who cannot walk too far, but also parent-with-kid pairs, even young people who definitely look fit enough to walk around!
Kecil even tried riding with Eyang on the scooter:

As for Kecil... well.. this Mama had tried her best to ensure comfortable shoes etc for Kecil. She did not take up the offer the first time round, but after lunch (and upon seeing other kids being trolleyed around within the park), she asked for her own 'transport':

Hahah! Her very own American style red rubber wagon! The seats are foldable, so you can use the wagon for all kind of combination of things: two small kids, 1 kid alone or one kid and some stuff, or you could even fold both seats and use the wagon purely for lugging your bags (we actually did that during the short intervals when Kecil was walking around!). There are even perfectly sized indentations on the side which can serve as drink holders. This Mama loved the wagon. Me thinks it's absolutely brilliant!

Anyway, thus reasonably equipped, we moved on to see the animals.

First item in Mama's agenda: Kangoroo feeding!

Hahah! Ok, this Mama has to confess. Although it was dressed up as 'for Kecil', actually the feeding was very much for Mama as well. Cos I ain't ever seen these critters before, ever!
And they were really cute, fluffy... and hungry. You can read more on Mama's kangaroo encounter here.

Moving on, we saw quite a few animals (duh!):

Kecil enjoyed her ride on the wagon:

We got 'a bit' lost at some point:

Kecil tried on some 'props' on Eyang's prompting:

She rode a horse (again!):

(Oh, she loved the horse. It was white, you see. What's with little girls and white horses anyway?)

She fed some rabbits french beans:

Why, she even fed the elephants!

Well, it was a great, fun, albeit somewhat tiring, day. It rained a little bit in the late afternoon. Good thing we were prepared with our umbrellas. At the same time, since it was just after the elephant's show, we were able to just sit out the rain (which, thankfully, did not last for ages!)

We decided that it was enough time spent at the zoo, and so we continued on to the next stop of our trip, which we'll cover on our next post. See you then!

Sidetrip 2013: announcement, snow, zoo (this one)
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