Monday, July 21, 2014

And the winner is... LADY LIBERTY!

Winner winner, chicken dinner!
Today, Linna's nursery school in Singapore celebrated Racial Harmony Day. I had never heard of this holiday before, but any day is a good day to celebrate diversity if you ask me!

The kids got to dress up in a national or ethnic costume of their choice, and Linna took 1ST PLACE! If you know me at all, you know that I am a crazily competitive person. I can't help it. I'm a former pageant girl. I hear the word "contest" and I start to sweat! So when I heard that there was going to be a costume contest at my daughter's school... I dived right in. Since my husband is TOTALLY against me putting Linna in pageants (he'll come around sooner or later), this costume contest was a good "starting off" point;) I made Linna's Lady Liberty costume out of Papa Saigh's "old" shirts (much to his surprise), a paper towel roll, and some art & crafts supplies we had laying around. I didn't spend a dime, and it took about an hour to complete from start to finish. Linna felt pretty proud getting onto the bus to go to school today, dressed as the Statue of Liberty! She would tell people she was "Lady La-Liberty":)

Parents were also asked to bring a dish to share from their home country. So naturally, I brought a tater-tot hotdish! It was so funny watching the other kids pick at it, and I overheard comments such as, "I don't like that one!", "This is yucky!", and "I'm not hungry!". Many of the kids in Linna's school are from Chinese, Indian, and Singaporean families (I actually think Linna is the only American in her school), so a Minnesota hotdish was a pretty brave dish for them to try. Some of the teachers tried it too, and they all literally said it was... "nice". Haha! I think that's code for, "Thanks for your participation". Hey, at least they tried it! I was pleased.

We are so proud of our little Asian-American-Minnesota Baby:) Here are a few more photos from today's festivities...

Parading the students in smaller groups. This is
Linna's teacher (Teacher Hunny) and her classmate Jonnah.

Linna with some of her classmates Jonnah, Aliss, and Emilia.

She got a gift for winning!

Lady Liberty and some of her schoolmates after the costume contest.

Linna trying dried seaweed for the first time (I think). She LOVES it!

Linna and her classmates picking at the tater-tot hotdish I made. No fans
(so far) in Singapore of this Minnesota favorite.

Other BEAUTIFUL costumes from the older classes!

Linna, Aliss, Jonnah, and Emilia waiting to try some new foods.
You ROCKED it as Lady Liberty Linna Saigh!
Way to make America proud. #Merica

Monday, July 14, 2014

FREE EVENT & GIVEAWAY: Win a one-month supply of huggies little movers.

*** CHECK OUT THIS FREE EVENT AT MY GYM IN EDEN PRAIRIE, AND ENTER TO WIN A ONE-MONTH SUPPLY OF HUGGIES LITTLE MOVERS ***

*** CONGRATULATIONS MEGAN NOLL! YOU'RE THE WINNER OF 4 PACKS OF HUGGIES LITTLE MOVERS DIAPERS. PLEASE EMAIL US (minnesotababyinfo@gmail.com) WITH YOUR PHONE NUMBER AND MAILING ADDRESS, SO WE CAN VERIFY AND GET YOU YOUR DIAPERS! ***

This Thursday (July 17th, 2014), My Gym in Eden Prairie is hosting FREE Baby & Parent Classes with Huggies' Baby-Movement Expert Nikki Glor. The event will be held at My Gym in Eden Prairie on Thursday, July 17th, with classes from 9 a.m. to Noon. Register for a FREE class today before they fill up (mygymedenprairie@gmail.com -OR- call 952-906-0028). Plus, we're giving away a MONTH SUPPLY (4 packs) of Huggies Little Movers diapers to one of you!


There's two ways to enter for a chance to win a ONE MONTH SUPPLY of Huggies Little Movers:

1. "Like" the Minnesota Baby Facebook page, and share the contest post with your Facebook friends (you must click "share" under the "Huggies Little Movers" contest post on our Facebook page).

2. Comment on this blog post (below) with your first and last name, along with the city and state you currently reside in.

Two simple ways to enter, and if you complete both ways, you'll double your chances to win! You must enter by Thursday, July 17th, 2014 at 8 p.m. (CST) to be eligible for a chance to win. One winner will be randomly selected to win 4 packs (available in sizes 3-6) of Huggies Little Movers Diapers, and the winner will be announced on this blog. This contest is only open to US residents. Good luck everyone!

*** For more information, or to register for one of the Parent & Baby Classes on Thursday, July 17th at My Gym in Eden Prairie, MN... CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Personalized gifts for kids in asia.

We had a birthday party that we were invited to this past month, and I couldn't find a gift idea for the "unique" 7-year-old birthday girl.

A friend recommended a personalized book from "Look It's About Me", which reminded me a little bit of our favorite Minnesota children's personalized book company "I See Me!". I ordered a personalized book and coloring book for the birthday girl, and I was thrilled with their adorable illustrations and stories. I loved that they not only had coloring books and reading books, but personalized gift wrap as well.

I was quite pleased with the gift we purchased for this birthday girl, that I even ordered our soon-to-be 3-year-old a personalized book for her upcoming birthday party.

The gifts from "Look It's About Me" are affordable, unique, and the quality is just like what I would expect from any other personalized gift company. I am so happy that the birthday girl enjoyed her personalized gifts from us, and we are looking forward to our daughter opening her personalized book in a few weeks! Shhhhhh... don't tell her;)

We'll let you know what she thinks!


TICKET GIVEAWAY: Thomas & friends at the minnesota children's museum.

*** WIN 4 TICKETS TO THE THOMAS & FRIENDS EXHIBIT AT THE MN CHILDREN'S MUSEUM ***


*** CONGRATULATIONS JENNIFER PUTNAM DVORAK! YOU'RE THE WINNER OF 4 TICKETS TO THE THOMAS & FRIENDS EXHIBIT AT THE MINNESOTA CHILDREN'S MUSEUM. PLEASE EMAIL US (minnesotababyinfo@gmail.com) WITH YOUR PHONE NUMBER AND ADDRESS, SO WE CAN VERIFY AND GET YOU YOUR TICKETS! ***

Thomas & Friends has rolled into the Minnesota Children’s Museum this summer, with an interactive exhibit that you can visit through September 21st (2014)! Specifically designed for kids age 2-7 years old, little ones can climb into Thomas’ cab and explore the engine’s inner workings, flip levers, investigate other movable parts that trigger train noises such as braking, whistles and steam, and much more. After leaving St. Paul, the exhibit will embark on a 10-year North American tour including stops in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Quebec. 


There's two ways to enter for a chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets to the "Thomas & Friends: Explore the Rails" Exhibit at the Minnesota Children's Museum:

1. "Like" the Minnesota Baby Facebook page, and share the contest post with your Facebook friends (you must click "share" under the "Thomas & Friends" contest post on our Facebook page).

2. Comment on this blog post (below) with your first and last name, along with the city and state you currently reside in.

Two simple ways to enter, and if you complete both ways, you'll double your chances to win! You must enter by Friday, July 11th, 2014 at 8 p.m. (CST) to be eligible for a chance to win. One winner will be randomly selected to win 4 tickets to this exhibit in the Twin Cities, and the winner will be announced on this blog. Good luck everyone!

*** Fore more information about purchasing tickets, and to find out more about exhibit times, please visit the Minnesota Children's Museum website.


Monday, June 30, 2014

Single mamas and preschool teachers are saints.

Ready for school after the long June holiday.
I feel like today is a national holiday for many mamas in Singapore. School is back in session!

Praise Jesus.

After having my 2.5-year-old on school holiday for the month of June, and Papa Saigh traveling for work, I have been NEEDING today to come. For almost two months, Linna and I have been in and out of doctor's offices in Singapore, trying to figure out why we've been so sick. This morning, I got a call from my doctor to confirm that my blood tested positive for Mycoplasma. I have been so run down, Linna has been all out of sorts, and we've both been on countless medications to treat our symptoms. This diagnosis is a sigh of relief. While I thought we just had a bad bug that would eventually run its course, I knew something just wasn't right. With a recommendation from another mom here in Singapore, I finally found a fantastically helpful doctor who took the time to figure out what was wrong with us. Last week, he sent me in for a blood test, put both Linna and I on our second round of antibiotics which we'll continue for another week, in hopes of us finally being healthy again.

While battling this sh*tty infection, I've been with Linna almost every second of every day for an entire month. We've dragged our sick selves on our daily errands together (usually resulting in public meltdowns), I've been up with her at all hours of the night, dealt with some fun symptoms such as diarrhea, green snot, stomach aches... the list goes on and on. At times I've felt like I have a newborn again due to our lack of sleep. I needed this three-hour school day so I could breathe. Single mamas and preschool teachers are absolute SAINTS in my eyes. There should be some kind of global medal for the sh*t these super humans have to put up with... EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.

I know that I am very lucky to be able to stay home with our daughter, but I am SO not cut out to be a single mama. While Papa Saigh has been very busy with work and traveling out of the country for the next month, I've been "on my own" for about a week, which is enough to make me want to pull my hair out. When my husband isn't traveling for work, I have my co-parent (my wonderful partner) there to step in when I need a break. When I say "break", I don't mean a trip to the spa. A "break" is being able to go grocery shopping alone, cook dinner without having a little human hanging on your leg demanding you to play with them, and a chance to have a couple kid-free hours to catch up on cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, etc.

I love being a mama, but I'm not cut out to play with a 2.5-year-old... ALL. DAY. LONG.

Preschool teachers that have the patience to deal with these unreasonable, sometimes annoying, yet adorable little people that we call our children, are my heroes. How they all don't have serious drinking problems is beyond me (I'm kidding... kind of... but not really). And the single moms that do it without much or any support... you deserve some kind of global recognition (and a lifetime supply of Fat Bird).

This face says it all. Being sick sucks.
This month, I found myself seriously losing it with my kid. When I say "losing it", I don't mean physically harming my kid, but I've honestly been very close to the edge. Call me a "sh*tty parent" for admitting that, but I know I'm not the only mom who has been there. I've always told myself that I would never become "that" mom. You know, the mom that becomes easily frustrated, annoyed, and impatient with their kid(s). Well, I'm speaking from personal experience when I say that when you're with your kid ALL day, EVERY day, without family or a co-parent to step in to give you some relief, you start to become "that" mom. When my 2.5-year-old recently started telling me, "don't be angry" or "don't be frustrated", after I'd completely overreacted to a mess she made or a tantrum she was having, I knew something had to change. I'm supposed to be her role model, teaching our kid the proper way to react in these types of situations. My stressed-out displays of frustration are NOT the example I want to be setting for our daughter.

I learned a HUGE lesson after my struggle with postpartum depression when Linna was a newborn, on how incredibly important it is to admit when you need help from others. Every mom needs a break every now and then. Even when my husband wasn't traveling for work, I hit a "mommy wall" when we first moved to Singapore. Before we moved to this foreign country, I had my parents, in-laws, siblings, and husband around ANY time I needed help. With my husband now traveling for work and my family (my support-system) back home in Minnesota, my husband was fantastic enough to demand that I hire a babysitter, a cleaner, or to simply order take-out. Although he's currently in a different country, he could see that I needed a break, and he didn't make me feel guilty about hiring someone to help me out. I know that spending money on "relief" isn't always an option for many families, but thankfully I have this support. My brother and I were raised by an incredible woman, who worked 60+ hours a week to support us as a single mom. My mom's parents weren't right down the street and she didn't have a co-parent in the picture when we were younger, so she had to rely on daycare, and actually took us to her office when she had no other options. My brother and I spent a few summers living with my grandparents, aunts, and uncles in Worthington, MN (three hours from where we lived), and I now completely understand why she sent us there. She was overwhelmed, had reached her "limit", and she is such a good mom for knowing when she needed a "break". I am so thankful that she reached out for help.
Passed out, waiting to see the doctor. Poor girl!

We're not a bad moms when we become "that" mom. Unless you're Jesus, or Mother Teresa, it happens. Whether you're a single mom, full-time working mom, stay-at-home mom, work-from-home mom, we've all been there... and if you haven't, well... good on you (PLEASE teach us your miraculous ways). It takes a GOOD mom to realize that you're teetering on the edge, and to ask for help from others, because you have your kids' best interest at heart. While this may seem pathetic to some people, I seriously have to remind myself some days how lucky I am to A. be a mom to an incredible kid, and B. not have to work (although I do work part-time), and be able to stay home with her. I know I have it easier than a lot of other moms out there, but I'm still a human being with limits. Nobody should ever make a mom feel like she should just "suck it up" because there are other moms out there who have it "way worse". Shame on anyone who belittles a mom's struggles, no matter how "small" you might feel your problems are. As long as you know how incredibly lucky you are to be a mom, there's no reason to ever feel ashamed about needing a "break". While we may feel sh*tty about not being able to "do it all", just know that NO ONE can do it all... and those that "can" are probably heavily medicated.

I, for one, would have to be.

It's amazing how rejuvenated I feel after today's break away from my kid. This much-needed few hours alone made me realize how sad I'd be if I didn't have the opportunity to stay at home with her. I needed this kid-free time to make me feel like my job as a mom isn't a "chore". Being a mom should be enjoyable. When it becomes a "chore", it's time for a break. Our kids will thank us for it one day.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Linna can spell her name.

Tonight as we were getting out of the shower, Linna decided to show me that she could spell her name. We're both THRILLED as you can see from the video!




Monday, June 16, 2014

BOOK GIVEAWAY: Paw prints and the itchy spots.

*** WIN ALL THREE BOOKS FROM THE PAW PRINTS COLLECTION ***


*** Congratulations to LEXI DEANS! You're the winner of the Paw Prints series of books. Please email us (minnesotababyinfo@gmail.com) with your address and phone number, so we can verify and ship your books to you. Thanks for participating everyone, and stay tuned for another giveaway coming really soon! ***

One of Linna's favorite books (Purple Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa) has a new "friend" to add to its series. We recently received the new book Paw Prints and the Itchy Spots as a gift, and once again... it's a hit with our 2.5-year-old! The author of the Paw Prints books is Sarah Mounsey (a mom of three boys), and she and her family currently live in Singapore. In the latest book in the Paw Prints series (Paw Prints and the Itchy Spots), the main character Eddie is covered from head to toe in itchy red spots. How did they get there, and how can he stop scratching them? His mischievous friend William and his lovable dog Oscar come to the rescue again. But how long will it take them to itch their way out of another spot of trouble? We are thrilled to add this book to our Paw prints collection, and we're giving this fantastic collection to one of you!


There's two ways to enter for a chance to win all three Paw Prints books:

1. "Like" the Minnesota Baby Facebook page, and share the contest post with your Facebook friends (you must click "share" under the "Paw Prints" contest post on our Facebook page).

2. Comment on this blog post (below) with your first and last name, along with the city and state, or area of Singapore you currently reside in.

Two simple ways to enter, and if you complete both ways, you'll double your chances to win! You must enter by Sunday, June 22nd, 2014 at 8 p.m. (CST) to be eligible for a chance to win. One winner will be randomly selected to win all three books from Sarah Mounsey's Paw Prints collection. The winner will be announced on this blog. Good luck everyone!


(Video from September 2013 of Papa Saigh reading a Paw prints book to Linna)