Saturday, March 24, 2012

Love at First Sightseeing: Singapore Zoo

Part I

Singapore Zoo mesmerised Kamal and I, as well as the children, in innumerable ways. From the lush greenery that embraced its ground to the distinct animals that frolicked throughout the spacious land. Love at first sightseeing it was.

Singapore 18.

Singapore 11.

Singapore 4.

Singapore 5.

Singapore 8.

Singapore 12.

Singapore 17.

Singapore 14.

Singapore 7.

Singapore 13.

Singapore 15.

Singapore 16.

Singapore 9.

Singapore 20.

Singapore 3.

Singapore 10.

Singapore 6.

Singapore 19. 

Hello, Singapore

Singapore 2. 

I have been to Singapore for only three times. Those visits were merely restricted to particular events. Except for Orchard Road, there was never a tour. 

Last school holiday, Kamal suggested a trip there for Khalish and his half siblings, Lisa and Joey. Which meant I was eventually a tourist in Singapore. Main aim: Universal Studios. Because of hectic work and study schedules respectively, Kamal and I wanted to take a package by Resorts World that included an accommodation within the resorts and one-day passes to Universal Studios. Unfortunately, our travel dates happened to be on the peak period, during which the package was invalid. We settled with a different deal. 
The itinerary was free and easy. We took a stroll along Orchard Road on the morning of our arrival, before traversing throughout Singapore Zoo the whole day. Before Maghrib, we checked-in at the little hotel in Balestier Road, which was adjacent to Jalan Ampas. The entire Friday was for Universal Studios. A walk from Esplanade to Merlion Park on Saturday morning, followed by a lunch and a stroll at Arab Street. 

Tips for our next road excursion:
  • Either a navigation system or a map is highly recommended. Neither was in the car when Kamal discovered that signs for expressways in Singapore were in abbreviation. Phew.
  • Autopass Card was a must, too. Kamal had always kept the card in the car. It was topped up at 7-Eleven, Singapore.
  • Online tickets saved time. Our tickets for Universal Studios were purchased online and it took us a little while to enter. A total opposite to our spontaneous Singapore Zoo visit. 
  • Last but not least, no matter how a little child preferred to walk during previous visits to various parks, do bring a stroller just in case the child feel extra tired from a long trip. At Universal Studios, Kamal and I rented a stroller for Khalish instead. Which was fine as well.
All in all, the trip was fun. How Khalish loved being with Lisa and Joey. Vice versa. Kamal and I hoped that the two of them were not affected by Khalish's mischiefs here and there though. We look forward to other trips absolutely. More photos in other posts, soon.

Singapore 1.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

School Holiday II

School Holiday 1.

School Holiday 6.

School Holiday 2.

School Holiday 5.

School Holiday 3.

Among 1001 school holiday simple pleasures.

Photos: My Instagram.

School Holiday I

School Holiday 4.
Photo: My Instagram

A week of school holiday will end tomorrow. For the past nine days, Khalish spent the holiday with me, during which I re-learned to juggle my roles as a mother, a student, and a domestic manager. Each with its own challenge and fascination. Alhamdulillah for the opportunity to be with my son. 

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

KhalishMania at KidZania

On such a hectic weekday, I thought of the previous weekend with with my little family.

The Artist I.

I remember how Khalish truly enjoyed his first experience at an indoor theme park. There were just the two of us then, and I wished Kamal was there to witness the little one's happiness as well. Months afterward, another indoor theme park was launched. I suggested to Kamal, "let's go there after you are done with your work tomorrow."

So we went to KidZania, Mutiara Damansara, last Saturday afternoon.

Interior Decorator.

The bad experiences first. The day started with Khalish's crabbiness. He refused to bathe because early morning bath has been associated with a long day of separation from the parents. He only wanted to eat at PappaRich, which caused a tantrum when the parents, who craved for delish salads, chose TGIF instead. He struggled to wear the security bracelet at the theme park because of the discomfort. 

Oh, Kamal and I ourselves were affected by the tantrums, too. Thankfully, at different times. Kamal did not smile at all during lunch, and I complained about the long queue towards KidZania's entrance. Usually, both of us tried our best to be positive.

Junior Architect.

Now, the great experiences. Once inside the place, Khalish demanded to be in our arms all the time. The 'children only' policy at the pretend establishments worsened the situation. Until we went to the first floor. There, parents were welcome to join the children's activities.

First place we explored was the pretend play school. Khalish immediately let go of our hands when he saw the musical instruments, the easels, and the puzzles. Seeing Khalish immersed in his own world, Kamal and I started to laugh at our previous negativities. Parenthood 101 acquired: great sense of humour is the best way to handle a child's crabbiness.

Sand Pit.

The pretend play shcool was followed by a mini house. We ended up there for two hours. Khalish cooked up a storm with other junior chefs in the kitchen, and later, built more monuments for KidZania at the sand pit. 

Oh, we even had a picnic at the sand pit. All the while, the hourly KidZania song entertained us. Yes, we stayed at the mini house that long.

Sushi King at Work.

Surprise, surprise, it was Khalish who asked to move to other establishments, downstairs. Kamal and I saw a lot of our mutual friends, but, we did not say 'hello' to everyone as some seemed to be under their children's commands. Including us.

Next stop: the cooking class by Ayam Brand. Too bad the class was already full by the time Khalish entered it. The boy was very frustrated. He himself found his way inside one more time and begged for an apron, but, there was no empty table. Kamal had to persuade him to try other activities outside. Meanwhile, I tried to search for an alternative that the boy might love, and that was when I saw an empty Sushi King counter. It was a great choice because, 1) Khalish's loud frustration immediately faded upon the sight of a familiar logo, and, 2) a funny, unforgettable conversation took place:

Kamal: One sushi kambing, please.
Khalish: We have no sushi kambing; we have sushi orang!


Venturing further, Kamal and I learned that most of the establishments on the ground floor were either full or restricted to children four years old and above. Khalish was three and a half. The other side of the first floor then.

From afar, we saw a funky place. It was a disco. Khalish actually sang to the songs played by the DJ from afar before he decided to join other boys and girls on the dance floor. Kamal and I now knew that he always took his time to mix with total strangers. 

Cute Sight.

Nearby, there was KPJ Kidzania Specialist Hospital. The doctors, nurses, and patients were all under 12 years old. Both Kamal and I were charmed with the sight at the newborns' room. 

Khalish was not as amused as us. He was more interested with the art studio. 

The Artist II.

He spent half of the KidZania currency to have one piece to colour after another. During art activities with Kamal and I, he preferred crayons, so, we had limited knowledge of his water colour skill. Like other parents who admired their children from the glass windows, we gave each other amazing reviews of the whole process and the end results. Amazing, but honest reviews, let us assure you.

For the eventual enthusiasm and independence, Kamal and I awarded Khalish with a dinner at his favourite restaurant, PappaRich. 

The One Who Loves PappaRich.
Photos: My Instagram