Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas Chess Challenge 2011

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Its his 4th competition after learning for almost a year and I am very happy with his progress so far. He had been winning more games with each competition and this time, he scored a very good score of 4.5 over 6 games played. This put him in the 4th position for Boys under 6 category.

He was delighted to get a beautiful trophy and proudly show it off to his daddy and every one at home.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Trip To Penang

The last time I went to Penang was like 2 decades ago with my mum. I have totally no idea what we can do over there for 2 weeks but thanks to Astee who gave me lots of suggestion as to what to do and we enjoyed ourselves so much that the kids complained we did not spend enough time there....

I flew there with the 2 girls on the 5th Dec while hubby holds the fort here. Its the first time the 2 girls took part in a standard chess competition (approx 5 hours for each game). Shall not elaborate here. We stayed in the same hotel as where the competition was held, which is Tanjung Bungai Beach Hotel Penang. Its just next to the beach and if not for the weather, its almost like Gold Coast....

View from our room...

Since their competition starts only on the 6th, we went down to George Town for lunch with a couple of parents and did some groceries shopping. The "cha kway teow" and chendol is nice but I cannot accept the taste of their Penang laksa.

The girls were eager to jump into the pool and thus once we got back to our room, they hurriedly unpacked their stuffs and asked for permission to go to the pool. We were supposed to meet the other parents to go out for dinner but decided to just eat at the hotel restaurant as we were all too tired and lazy to walk out.

The next few days, we either walked or took a cab to the nearest shopping mall - TESCO which is about 10 minutes walk from our hotel for lunch and dinner was spend with other parents at the nearby food centre eating their local dishes.

The girls enjoying their treats at TESCO...

Late afternoons were spend either at the beach with their friends or at the pool...

DAY 1...
Family holiday starts on 10th Dec when hubby brought the 2 boys to meet us. The timing was perfect! They arrived just in time to see Charmaine winning her game. We did not stayed for the award presentation as the girls will not be getting any. Instead, we took a cab (which is super expensive to take cab in Penang) to Batu Ferringhi where the Adventure Zone is. We had a quick light lunch before the kids went wild in there playing with all the long slides. Nicholas, as usual, was not very comfortable with the slides but the other 3 were happily going up and down. The entrance fees for kids is RM30+taxes while adult enters free. The kids need to wear long sleeve shirt to play on the red slide which I called it the "free-fall" slide. Rachel was the bravest as she tried numerous time on the "free-fall" slide! Charmaine only went twice.

On the way out, we saw some sea sports there and hubby asked me to psycho Nicholas to try the para-sailing over the next few days.

We decided to rent a car instead of getting around via taxi. The girls played table tennis with their friends while we waited for the car to arrive.

Our first stop was to the Snake Temple which was super far! The entrance fees is only RM5 per person and the kids learned a fair bits about snakes. They were most interested with the King Cobra though.

Next, we visited the War Museum. Hubby decided to rest while I took the 4 to explore the place. Its an educational trip for all. We saw the torture cell; tree where they hanged the POWs; "chopping" board which was used to chop off the heads of POWs hanged on the wall with a headless dummy POW kneeling in front of it and many more. Nicholas was not comfortable with the sight and I told him to stay out while the girls and Ryan explore the cells. There were many things to see and we even crawled through a narrow tunnel and the 3 bigger ones climbed up the ladder to exit via the air well. I couldn't trust myself climbing up there with Ryan so we crawled back and exit via the way we entered.

We were supposed to go to Batu Maung Fishing Village but couldn't find our way there and so deiced to gave up and settled for the seafood restaurant opposite our hotel. On the way down, we discovered this beautiful scenic place ... Bukit Genting Hill. Our car almost overheated driving up the steep hill!

Nicholas vomited right after dinner...suspect it either due to the long car ride or he was frightened by what he saw at the war museum.

Today is a day for Nature...We took the tram ride up Penang Hill and hubby paid RM60 for a 25 minutes buggy ride tour. We spend about 2 hours there but most of the time was spend queuing for the tram ride up and down.

Next was to Tropical Fruit Farm. It took us near an hour to get there and poor Nicholas was suffering from the motion sickness and threw up twice! Poor boy. Anyway, maybe the season was over as there was nothing much to see. We paid RM28 per adult and RM20 per child for a guided tour which comes with fruit buffet (nothing fantastic) and a glass of fruit juice. The guided tour was brief though we did learn how pineapple reproduced (by cutting the crown into 4 and replant it) and that bananas tree withered once it he fruit were bore and a new one will grow again from the root.

Hubby decided to let the kids check out the Penang bridge before heading back to Butterfly Farm. And we spend nearly 4 hours there. We won't have left if not for hubby reminding us that its way past lunch time! There's so many butterflies and its a different experience from our Singapore Zoo's fragile forest. The price for adult is RM27 and child RM15.

After our late lunch, we drove down to the Batu Ferringhi for the sea sport. Hubby paid RM315 for the whole package 3 Para sailing + Banana boat + 30mins Jet ski. I managed to convinced Nicholas to try the Para sailing. He was a little nervous at first but he had to act brave for he said he is a big boy now.

After Para sailing, hubby accompanied the 3 on the Banana boat ride. Its a bad decision as Nicholas was frightened the moment the boat started going super fast. The 2 girls needless to say enjoyed themselves. To make things worst, the operator jerked the boat just as they were reaching the shore and Nicholas fell off into the water! Luckily, hubby jumped off and grab hold of him. He was crying from shocked and I had to pacify him. He calmed down soon but refused to go for the Jet ski. So the 2 girls took turns to go on the Jet Ski with hubby while Nicholas and Ryan stayed behind to play with sands.

Asked Nicholas his thought of the sport, his reply was "When I went up there, water (tears) was in my eyes but after a while, I'm not scared already. Its nice to fly up there. I'm 5 years old now, I am brave enough to try Para sailing. Next year, I will try to be brave to go for the Jet ski." So proud of you, Nicholas!

We went to Gurney hawker for early dinner. Its like our Newton Circle. And its a last minute shopping at Gurney Plaza. Charmaine kept asking for extended stay as she wants to visit the Toy Museum. Assured her we will come again soon.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Ryan @ 32 months

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Didn't have a chance to take a good photo for him on the day he turns 32 months, so got to "borrow" the one we took on BIL's wedding day.

Speech development

Something to rejoice about is that he finally able to pronounce "mummy" clearly. no more "puppy; uppy" but MUMMY!!! Yeah!

And he started speaking in longer and more complete sentence like "take one book, not many"; "I don't want you! I want mummy!"; "I don't want this! I want angry bird!" and many more! His voice is so sweet and I love the way he sounded when he called me...he will goes "mummy, mummy, mummy!" follow by whatever he wants to say.

When posted with a question that he can't answer, he will tap his little finger on his head/chin as if like he is thinking very hard and should he really can't remember, he turned to me and said "I don't know" with a very cute innocent face. And if he remembers, he goes "I know, I know!" in his excited tone.

He loves flushing the toilet and if he is in one with me, he will wait eagerly for the chance to flush it. He will reminds me "mummy, mummy, mummy. You urine, I flush"

He loves his daddy's version of the 3 billy goat and he was so familiar with the story that he joined in the story telling part too taking the role of the ugly troll! Really cute...

He loves looking at our digital photo frame although it had been there for almost a year. He never grew tired of it. He enjoys looking at every photos and pointing out the who and who.. He goes shouting and pointing jiejie Rachel! Jiejie "harmaine"! "tor tor!" "Mummy!" "Daddy!" " That's me!" " That's you!"


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