Friday, February 21, 2014


Some people are surprised by the success of the movie 'Frozen'. As someone who watched the movie on big screen (with the kids, no less), this Mama is not one of them. With beautiful graphics, catchy tunes, funny characters and, of course, no less than two princesses, the movie easily steals some prime real estate in many little girls' heart. Including this one, who readily declared 'winter' as her favourite season despite never (ever) experienced it first hand before.
I am happy to report that she was not the only one, though. Interestingly enough, some of her friends who might have experienced 'real winter' seemed to choose seasons other than winter as their favourite. Ha!

Anyway, moral of the story was, given her current fascination with all things winter, our plan for the other weekend was already set once we found out about the new skating facility at the next city.

We were going skating!

It was not long after we came back from our Holiday trip 2013, and so, fully expecting the rink to be quite cold, Kecil was decked out in all her warm stuff from the Holiday.

She loves those ear muffs. Who knew you can get such a selection of cute pink ear muffs in Indonesia, of all places?

Please forgive the quality of the pics. There were some restriction about bags and such, so most of the pics were taken using camera phone.

The price of admission included rental shoes and 45 mins in the rink, plus usage of any available 'skating helper' on the rink. Now we've never used these 'helpers' before, but we could see that it would be very much useful.
Well, 'we' as in Mama & Daddy, that is. Kecil was telling us very confidently that skating was easy.

We did not want to burst her bubble, so we simply warned her that the ice will be slippery.

I wish I can tell you miraculous stories of how Kecil managed to get her bearing quickly on ice. Right. Did not happen. She was totally taken a back by the slippery ice and could hardly stand. Mama, who has very little experience on ice, was not much better, haha.... Still, we got along, eventually.

Kecil didn't get a helper at first, because everybody else was rushing for them. So she simply held the fence around the rink, or Mama or Daddy's hand. When finally she got a turn with the helper, she was hanging on the penguin for dear life, my little thing.
Still, we were very proud that she would not give up, at all. The only indication we got that she was tired was when she asked how much longer we had.

It was a fun outing, even if a bit expensive considering the 1-hour trip to the rink, the admission, meals etc. Still, we might do it again, perhaps in a different rink with better rate. We'll see.

We are happy to be able to expose Kecil to all these 'wintery' stuff. We do hope she'll base her 'favouritism' on experience rather than things she saw in movies. Haha....


Monday, February 17, 2014

Kecil's new 'Pet'

I think Mama mentioned before that Kecil might need a new bag soon. Not quite a surprise, considering how small Kecil was when she got THAT bag.

Ha... still sporting the usual drool-drenched outfit... That bag had been around for a while, indeed.

So it was really time for a new one, and this Mama had been looking around. Instead of the usual iconic kids bags, we went for this beauty of a bag/luggage for kids from Samsonite. Ain't it cool?

We love the fact that it was soo full of character (Why, Daddy went as far as declaring that had Kecil been his classmate when he was her age, he would be soooo envious of her bag!)
We love that it was not PINK
We love that it is a Samsonite, which for us usually mean good quality (Indeed, the bag came with a two-year warranty)
And the best part, we love that it cost us as much as any other iconic (although unbranded) trolley bag with similar volume. Seriously.

For an added 'cute factor' Mama even put the turtle-shaped hand sanitiser on the bag. Hihihi...

We do hope that this bag will last for a while. Being a proper 'cabin bag' (albeit for kids), Kecil can also bring the bag for her trips. This Mama is quite excited about that.

Elsa, the crocodile (yes, the bag even got a name already!) was not Kecil's first Sammies. She got another set of Sammies when she was still a wee toddler from her Tante, in the shape of a lady bug. It was cute, but we never did quite find a practical purpose for them. Rest assured that we try to make good use of Elsa.

And it was time for school.....

It's really kind of cool to see Elsa lined up with the rest of the bags. Kekekekeke.... Daddy said Elsa could have easily eaten any of the rest. I'd say.

Well... another day, another bag. Here's to Kecil and Elsa. May you both have many adventures together and loads of fun along the way. Cheers!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Weekend Cycling

Now that Kecil can hold up her own on a bike (quite) close to the size of her parents bikes, on a rare weekend when we all managed to wake up early, we decided to cycle together. Given the mode of transport (bike, instead of walking), Daddy was optimistic enough to set the horse stables as our goal.
Mama was just happy to tag along and take pictures.

We took a water break at the next housing complex where Mama checked out the pool at the background. See the rows of plastic boats at the top right corner? Looks interesting, no?

Soon after the housing complex, the road became steeper. It was going down, but both sides of the road also went down steeply. It was a pretty cool view, but definitely not for the faint-hearted.
Not to mention the fact that there was no longer any sidewalk along the road.

For safety reason, Daddy recommended going on the grass rather than on the road itself. This was because the cars seemed to drive pretty fast there. But going on the grass proved to be too much for Kecil. Her little hands soon got tired from handling all the bumps and the brakes.

So.... we did not quite get to the stables. We were pretty close, but I think Kecil's knowledge of the terrain proved to be her undoing. She knew we would still have to handle a bit of a stretch of rough roads, so she gave up early. So we turned back, and Kecil, with her tired little hands, chose to 'rest' on Daddy's bike while Mama pushed her bike and Mama's.
 (Yeah, I know. I am awesome, am I not? Kekekeke.... It was not THAT easy, but it was doable, and anyway, it was not that far from the housing complex where there were again sidewalks)

Thus ended the story of our weekend cycling. Actually, once back on familiar ground (sidewalk & safe, flat roads), Kecil was back to her usual sporty self. I guess we have to go slowly if we were to transition to off-road biking.

Still... we have hopes for next time. Now it's just to figure out another weekend when we all wake up early enough to cycle. Ha! I shall leave you with the speculation of the black sheep who tend to wake up late during weekends. Cheers!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The next adventure

You might be wondering what happened to Kecil's ballet lessons, especially after we went lengths to get her a proper costume (and tutu, ha!!). Well.... unfortunately, for some personal reasons, the ballet teacher had to go back to her home country after the summer holidays last year. It was also unfortunate that we did not manage to find another so far. In any case, Kecil's days had been busy since. Still, with the new year beginning, we thought it was time for the next adventure.

Any guess?

This time round, the adventure took her to an indoor court, where.... Kecil is learning to play tennis!

The story was that a long long time ago, Kecil's Daddy took tennis lessons, and now he was determined to inflict the same to his offspring. Ha! I'm half-joking.
Another part of the story was also that Mama found out that Ami had been taking solo tennis lessons, and could definitely benefit from having a partner.
So... since taking up sport is definitely something GOOD, why not? And so we started from the beginning of the year, once school started.

In the course of 4 or 5 lessons, we've managed to attract the neighbourhood kids, who took turn to appear at lesson time. Haha! A few pictures up was actually our biggest headcount, with 4 girls in last week. Not sure about the permanence of the group, but I think Kecil & Ami is going to stay on for the foreseeable future. In the meantime, they do have fun in a group.

Taking a much needed break.
Yesterday's lesson was canceled due to coach not feeling well, but we do look forward to the rest of the lessons coming up after that. I know there are scant few pictures so far, I guess that means that Mama just have to bring the BIG camera more often, and employ her lazy legs to get better angles of the kids next time. Ha!

Until then, cheers to the sporty Little One!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Holiday 2013: Trip out

Finally our holiday update is here! Not quite the whole thing yet, I'd say, but it's a start. Let's just hope we'll complete the series, unlike some..... huh.

So... anyway, as usual, we have our annual homecoming, which we'll dub Holiday 2013 for simplicity's sake. Our objective remain similar to any of our previous homecoming: to meet with the family, both from Mama & Daddy's side. Of course, given the geographical constraint, there is always a lot of interpretation to the objective.

This Holiday, we took the opportunity to explore the Java island from behind the wheel, rather than taking the mighty airplane.  The decision was somewhat aided by a few factors: we managed to cut down travel time in the Philippines (and cost!), domestic air tickets were a bit high due to the high season, the family in Surabaya just acquired a new car that was well suited for road trip... all in all, it just seemed like a good time to do something we had always wanted.

In any case, this is the start of our journey this time. You might remember this same spot from our previous homecoming. That year, we were trying a different route via KL as we took the budget airline AirAsia. We liked the fact that we did not have to travel to Manila, but flying 4 hours (plus 8 hrs transit time) on budget proved to be .... less than optimal. So.. this time, we flew budget to Hong Kong, followed with Cathay to Surabaya. The good thing is that Dragon Air, the budget airline, being a subsidiary of Cathay, we were able to make the booking at one shot. Why, since the outbound transit in Hong Kong was only 2 hours, we did not even have to think about our luggage until we reached our final destination! Fantastic.

By the way, the airport had gone through some upgrading, so we checked in at a different part of the building that day, which was decorated for Christmas. Kecil was obviously very happy, not sure if it was for the trip, the decoration, the excitement, or the combo of everything mentioned above. Haha....

At the waiting area, there were more Christmas decoration.

We passed the time stocking up on liquids for the flight (and subsequently using the airport 'facilities', ha!). Kecil was very happy to play with the empty bottles (which was emptied to our 'proper' bottles, not drunk at one sitting!) before throwing them away.

We could see our plane from the huge windows, as well as the gigantic Emirate plane landing not long after. Did you know that they have a direct flight to Doha (by Qatar Airlines) and Dubai (Emirates) from Clark now? Man, we need to start saving money and hunting for things to do in those destination. Haha....

Anyway it was not too long before we needed to board the plane, not before some pics though, especially with that fake snowman guarding the sky-bridge.

The experienced traveller that Kecil was, she spent no time before going through all the things around her seat. Now as mentioned earlier, we were transiting in Hong Kong, which was very cold around the time. Hence the big bags that Daddy carried with him. That's where we put all our jackets and stuff, just in case. Being comfortable enough in the plane, Kecil deemed that her puny pink jacket as sufficient. Just look at her confidently striding through the aisle at the end of the flight:

.... only to have her socks knocked off (figuratively, that is) by the cold wind that greeted her just outside the plane:

Brrrr..... Hahhaa..... Well, it was only windy at the staircase. A special bus was already waiting at the bottom of the stair to take us into the safe (and warm! and not windy!) comfort of the airport building, where we were going to wait for our connecting flight to Surabaya.

We had lunch at the airport (no pics. You know how it is with Mama & food, right?). The best story was that since we were in Hong Kong, we were very much looking forward to eating some nice dim sum. So... we picked a nice looking restaurant, sat down, and Kecil promptly demanded to have sushi.

As it turned out, she was just confused between 'siomay' and 'sushi'.
She went on to enjoy the dim sum well enough, and in fact, the siomay became sort of an obsession through the rest of the journey. Ha!

It was a good beginning of our Holiday 2013 adventure. Stay tuned for more. Cheers!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Ready for School

This Mama can't resist sharing these pics, stolen just this very morning while Kecil was getting ready to go to school.
Although Mama still have to help her with showering, dressing up, combing her hair & preparing her breakfast, Kecil is slowly getting more and more independent.
Which also explains her clothes despite her uniform. *snort snort. (She picked them herself, you see. Still, she promised that next week she'll be in uniform every day.)

So... today, she managed to wake up herself (she was already awake when Mama went to her room), she chose her own clothing, she ate by herself, pun on her shoes, then brought her bag to the designated car of the day.

I am also very happy to report that she's finishing most of the lunches that Mama pack for her. So here is one happy bento-making Mama.

Now I know you all are still waiting for my 'updates'. But you all know that this Mama works at a snail's pace, right?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Outside ...

It was a hot afternoon during the weekend, and this Mama went out to investigate the source of all the noise coming out from this general direction.
Apparently the kids were playing 'Duck, duck, goose'.

Which brought home the point, Kiddo is very 'American'. Ha!
Just the other day, I heard the kids singing 'ring around the rosy', which I don't even know how to sing! (I will, however, wait another day to share with the kids the 'meaning' behind the song)

Still, American, Indonesian, or whatever, she is still my Kiddo, and best of all, she's growing up.

This was a recent pic recovered from Mama's camera roll. Try compare that to this:

An old old pic, taken at the same playground, in almost similar pose.

Cheers, Kiddo!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Back to School 2014

Well... school had been going on, before and after the Christmas break, it's just that we don't really cover much on it over here. The carpool is still going on (one kid already ran off with her classmate that morning the picture above was taken), and if they were still wearing their civilian clothing... well.. the next batch of school uniform finally arrived sometime before Christmas, resulting in this group for some of the mornings:

This year, we also had a new addition to the carpool crowd, introducing Mary:

Unfortunately (no blame on Mary, of course) we also encountering something... quite new nowadays, mainly after the Christmas break. This Mama call it 'the morning malaise'.

Some extremely sleepy (and looong) faces, combined with general contrariness during the morning prep. Ugh. We used to have this problem back in Kecil's old Skool. I guess so far the new school had its novelty factor keeping this problem at bay. Then came the loong Christmas break..... Kecil just got used to NOT waking up early.

Still... I'm still placing a lot of faith on the carpooling crowd.

... especially because I think that she's like me, that is she likes to show only her good side to others. Hihi.... So she usually kind of 'wake up' by the time she reached the designated ride of the day. Of course, Kecil being herself, there are plenty enough good sides to go around. Like this one below:

Just some notes regarding her 'luggage', as shown in the pictures further up, Kecil used to carry like 3 bags: yellow for her jacket and writing material, her folder, and her lunch bag. Then she wanted a rolling luggage like the ones most of her classmates are using. So we grabbed this old bag, which Eyang brought her loong time ago. It works all right, cutting down her clutter to just one bag. We might need a new bag soon, but so far Mama & Kecil are happy with it.

So, anyway, here's hoping for less malaise and more happy mornings. Cheers to you all!

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