Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Trade 1: Conservation 0

At the risk of sounding pessimistic, I'm going to say it: we're going to run the Earth to the ground. I'm not entirely sure that there will be many animal species left by the time the small fry gets to my age, not any that she won't know of that's not in a zoo, conservation park or an aquarium, anyway.

I'm not sure how political a platform is the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species is, but it sounds as if trade really is trumping conservation these days.

Actually, trade is probably trumping EVERYTHING these days.

So, no protection for the Atlantic bluefin tuna (thanks to voracious appetites for sushi and sashimi), the porbeagle shark lost its protection along with six other sharks, which failed to get protection.

Just why do we need to eat shark's fin? The bloody thing doesn't even have a specific taste, just a texture.

Men and their virility complex are the culprits in trade of exotic animal parts: tiger, bear, what not. No, you're not gonna get it up just by consuming the penis of this or that. You have your own, just figure out how to bloody use it! It's not enough that there are enough phallic symbols in our daily lives; our wildlife has been and still is paying for man's vanity and greed.

One day we'll discover we went too far. By then, it will be too late.

Good luck to us. No, good luck to our future generations.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Day 5: Success!

We got to school early today; I was knackered from a business day trip back to KL the day before, so we took the cab. We were one of the first ones at school and the place was quiet.

Small fry insisted that the school was closed, all the way from the entrance till the door of her classroom. And then Xun lau shi came to the door and greeted her.  Teacher Neelima was also in class and there was another of her classmates already busy with the toys spread on the floor.

At the door, she'd told me she wanted me to go into class with her too. When Xu lau shi asked for a high five, she tentatively stuck her hand out and then as lau shi dodged, she got braver. And promptly stepped through the threshold of the door and forgot about me.


I'm dreading the week back in KL next week. Or rather, I'm dreading the regression the small fry will go through after we return from a week without daily school. I'm anticipating an all out bawl session when we start again.

Sigh, it's time to plan for shorter trips back to KL with minimal disruption to her schedule.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Show Me A Little Love

For my birthday tomorrow, I ended up giving myself not one, but TWO birthday presents.

First, a nick on my right thumb while washing the Global knife yesterday. And there I am telling Jona to be careful with that knife when she handles it.

Two, another nick today, this time on my left thumb, with the fabric shears while cutting up cotton duck for a project.

Both required some minutes of sucking on the wounds before they would stop bleeding.

I love myself quite a bit, I suppose.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Curtain Drawing

On Thursday, small fry and I took a bus to the library, as is our wont on a free day in between playgroup.

We leave after breakfast, take a leisurely stroll to the bus stop and it's a short two-stop ride to the community library. She knows which bus we take to the library: 155. "Is the 155 her yet, Mummy?"

We walk from the bus stop to the library; I return my books at the book drop and then we climb the stairs up to the second floor to look for books for me before we head back down to the first floor to look for books for her. She likes sitting on and sometimes rearranging the colourful Ikea kid chairs.

After a few readings, we take the books to the scan counter where I prop her up on the counter and she helps me lay the books on the scanner before we take them out.

This time, she insisted on holding her own Charlie and Lola book all the way to the bus stop. She loves pressing the button on the lights for the pedestrian crossing. She likes hurrying me across the road, pulling on my hand, prompting, "Faster, Mummy! Faster!"

Sometimes she falters as we're almost there and hankers to be carried. Usually I succeed in persuading her to make the distance.

And then we hop on the 155 back the two stops where we came and cross the main road back to our place.  Back home, we have lunch. The whole trip takes not more than two hours if we don't stop by Shop 'N Save for groceries.

I'll miss those morning trips to the library.

With the small fry starting daily playgroup yesterday, those morning trips to the library are a thing of the past. The thought occurred to me as we made our way home yesterday, and again today after I'd put her to bed. I felt a momentary pang of melancholy.

Gone are those leisurely Tuesdays and Thursdays where I can decide to hop on a bus either to Parkway Parade for a grocery run or to the library. Mornings will be hectic and hopefully, I'll have the energy in the afternoons to take her out on bus rides.

I'll miss those slow and easy days. We'll just have to find the time in the afternoons to hop on the 155 on our book rounds to the library.

It won't be the same.

Friday, March 19, 2010

School, Showering, Totoro and Eyes

First day of unaccompanied play group today. As expected, the small fry bawled her head off and tried to escape out the door. Luckily it was latched and I could hear her bawling on the other side, "I want my Mummy! I want to go out!"

After that, more new kids arrived at the class next door and there was a cacophony of bawls and I couldn't tell who was who. So instead of beating myself up about the small fry crying, I left.

I did catch a glimpse of her clinging to her teacher as I left.

Two and a half hours later,  I picked her up and the teacher had a chat with me. Apparently the small fry did better than she expected and cried for only a few minutes. She was participative but was more of a one-on-one kind of gal. As soon as the teacher was out of sight, like when they went for a bathroom run, she cried.

Looks like we have a ways to go.

But teacher Neelam was very optimistic and pleased with the small fry. By the end of the class, small fry and her best friend were jumping about, having fun.

Small fry lugs her Minnie bag-on-wheels around the living room.

"Totoro! Come, Totoro. Let's shower and then you can wear your eyes."

"The three Totoros will shower first and then I will buy them eyes."

Small fry running to and fro in between the living room and the bedroom, carting her Totoros and her Minnie bag.

"Totoro! Totoro, come! Let's go on the bus! See, one goes on the bus and the other two go in the cab. We're on the bus! Totoros are so tired!"

Plonks on the couch with her Totoros.

"All right, I sit with you. Look at the Totoro. Totoro's sleeping on my tummy."

"Totoro is sleepy, Muumy. Totoro, you dropped your eyes! Mummy, Totoro dropped his eyes while sleeping. It's OK Totoro, I pick up your eyes."

"Totoro dropped his nuts! Oh, oh! Totoro, it's OK. Look at that, his eye dropped out. Ooooooooo, oh, it's OK. Totoro."

"The other Totoro fell down!"

Grabs her Minnie handphone:

"I call the cab for Totoro. Oh, the cab's downstairs already. All right, Totoro. Let's go downstairs. Wait ah...see, I'm going downstairs. I'm going to pick Totoro's eye up. I just put it in my zip. It's OK, the eye's still there, Totoro."

While talking to Totoro, "All right, now you can wear your eye."

And so on and so forth. It went on to colouring and drawing and singing and activity after activity after activity. I felt tired just listening to her.

I took a 10-minute audio recording of her followed by 17 minutes of video. And then I went to cook dinner. Jona and I didn't have to entertain her one bit. She entertained and talked enough for herself, the Totoros, Jona and I put together! She didn't stop till we were done cooking and it was time for her to try out the quesadilla.

Wow. First day of school? Amazing.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Penguin & The iPad Difference

Here's to those naysayers out there. How cool is this?

The people who pooh-pooh the iPad probably don't have kids or have never handed their iPod to their small ones to try out. It's the easiest thing for kids to manouvre and figure out how to use.

Small fry loves the iPod. She handles it like a pro. She learns her alphabets on the iPod and traces them with her finger. She plays constructive games on the thing. She's even figured out how to get to the emails. I have to stop her from sending off gawd-knows-what to people.

So yes, the iPad is cool. And with the right apps, makes for a great education tool.

A Vision Of Me

The small fry has shown a spark of creativity. She attempted to draw me, or rather DID draw me the other day. This is what I look like in a 3-year old's mind:

The two dots above the line are my eyes; the line is not a moustache but my mouth and the dot below is my nose. Shortly after she drew this:

After I'd asked her why my nose ended up below my mouth, she amended her drawing. The two dots above the line are my eyes again. This time my nose ended up ON my mouth. She added in the two diagonal lines as my legs and the two dots at their ends are my feet.

I wonder if Picasso would have approved?

I can visualize my very own air-and-stick figure, sans hands and arms, walking around in her mind giving her orders.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Be Nice

Hubby was bouncing a beach ball off small fry's head yesterday morning. Smiling but probably annoyed, the small fry said, 

"Daddy, why did you hit my head? It's not nice, Daddy!"

Yes, Daddy. It's not nice having your head as a launch pad for a beach ball.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Telling Me The Difference

I have a little potted plant in my bathroom. It's a tiny thing, no flowers, just leaves.

After brushing my teeth this morning, I took the water spray to spritz some moisture onto the thing.

From the toilet seat where she was sitting and watching me, the small fry asks, "Mummy, what are you doing?

"I'm spraying the flower, girl."

"No, mummy! That's not a flower, that's a plant. The flower is downstairs!"

(We have flowering shrubs in our condo compound.)

Dumbfounded, I reply, "Oh, you're right, girl! This isn't a flower coz it's got no flowers. It's got only leaves, so it's a plant."

"Yes, mummy. It's a plant."

Right. My 2-year old is smarter than I am.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

So Much For That

Tortoise B has disappeared.

One minute he was in the stroller with his buddy, and the next, he was gone. I didn't even notice his disappearance till we arrived home. Small fry was notably, asleep; so of course, she didn't even register the loss.

I retraced my steps back to the station, hoping that he'd have fallen down somewhere nearby. But nope, I guess he went in search of greener pastures.

So now it's on to Tortoise B, version 2.0.

The small fry is gonna bawl when she wakes up.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

A Tale Of Two Tortoises

Conversations about two tortoises:
"Toetoise is sick. He needs medicine."
"Really, what happened to him?"
"Aw, he's got a cough. See, he's coughing mummy."
"Here toetoise, here's your medicine."
"Now he's going back to sleep. I cover him back."
"How about the other tortoise? He's not sick, right?"
"Oh, this one has got a fever. He needs medicine too."
"See, he's drinking his medicine."
"Now they're both sleeping. They are both sick."
"Aw, toetoise. It's OK, toetoise. It's OK."
Pat, pat, pat.

Everyone, meet Tortoise A (light blue) and Tortoise B (bright blue). They are now the small fry's constant companions. They're about 4" long and 3" tall. They have dethroned Totoro as her new friends.

They follow her everywhere: they watch from the sink when she's bathing; they watch from the floor when she's on her porta potty; they perch on the dining table when she eats; they share her pillow on her bed; they follow her in her stroller when she goes out; they go EVERYWHERE with her.

It all started when a woman in a wheelchair at the MRT station gave her a tiny balloon tortoise when I gave the woman $1. Naturally, the balloon tortoise lasted only a week before it deflated into oblivion. Small fry was distraught, and I mean D.I.S.T.R.A.U.G.H.T.

Every once in a while, she would burst out, "My toetoise! My toetoise!" as if it were the first time she found out about its demise. The last straw dropped when I wheeled her into the station past the spot where the woman in the wheelchair was and she whimpered, "My toetoise, my toetoise."

I didn't want to buy her another stuffed toy. Her stuffed menagerie is already colourful enough - octopus, armadillo, porcupine, Totoro in various sizes, Catbus, tiger, Miffy, Mickey, teddy, Senget, among others - and I didn't want to add to the clutter that is the mound on her bed. So I thought, maybe something small.

Luckily, a riffle through my amigurumi crochet book yielded a pattern for a cute tortoise. And he was small, to boot! Thus Tortoise A was born. Unfortunately, Tortoise A was not very well made. The stitches were a bit sloppy and his neck was floppy. Doesn't help that she grabs him and takes him around by the head. Therefore, Tortoise B was born.

Small fry had a hand in Tortoise B's creation. She chose the colours. She nixed all my suggestions of colour. She wanted the exact same shade of shell, just a brighter shade of head and limbs.  No green, n browns, no pink, no nothing. Just the shades she chose. Right.

Her tortoises can fly, they also like to sleep. A lot. Snug under her cloth. On the sofa, on her bed, on her pillow, on her tray table, on the coffee table, they sleep everywhere.

They have both taken a fall from her stroller. Somehow her hands lose their grip and each has met the cold hard floor. On different occasions.

So far, they're both holding up. Tortoise A is a bit battered for the wear. Stray yarn pops up here and there. I find them and I stick them back in. Tortoise B is better constructed. He stays intact. They've been around for a week or so. I hope they stay around for a bit more.

"Toetoise, you are so cute, na! Aw, toetoise!"
Blog Widget by LinkWithin