Thursday, August 28, 2014

Tired linna helps bake papa saigh's 30th birthday cake.

Alright... so we've sacrificed the afternoon nap in the name of the "EARLY BEDTIME". 

FYI, I'm new to this "no nap" sh*t... and I f-ing hate it. Well, it's actually a love-hate relationship. 

Yes, I love Linna's early bedtime (she's completely OUT by 7 p.m.), but the "over-tired" hours that accompany a non-napping kiddo REALLY make me thankful for wine o'clock.

On a normal day, our 3-year-old falls into her "over-tired stage" around 5 p.m. I think this is known as the "witching hour" (AKA a stay-at-home mom's wine o'clock). But today, when I picked our 3-year-old up from school at 2:45 p.m., the meltdowns began IMMEDIATELY. 

I just LOVE having to explain to our 3-year-old that she can't "drop Papa's birthday cake on the floor" because she's "angry". In Linna's defense, I think she's fighting a common-cold or something, because she's had a runny nose and hasn't been herself lately. 

Anyway, to make a long story short, baking a birthday cake for your husband's 30th birthday is SO NOT FUN with an over-tired 3-year-old.

I miss naps.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Linna's first time playing tee-ball.

We recently signed Linna up for a kids' sports program in Singapore called Ready Steady Go Kids.

She has a blast every week learning how to play new sports, and this past week she learned how to play tee-ball.

This is video of our 3-year-old hitting the ball the first couple of times. We've never introduced her to this sport, which happens to be a Minnesota favorite, and I think we'll need to start practicing a bit at home:)

PS, how do you determine if your kid is a "righty" or a "lefty" when they're using things like baseball bats, golf clubs, etc.? I can decide if she's just a kid trying to get the hang of a new sport, or if she's having trouble hitting the ball with a bat right-handed.

Either way, it's too cute!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Linna sings "jesus loves me".

Our 3-year-old's nursery school in Singapore has been rehearsing for their end-of-year concert in October. On the way home from school today, Linna started singing this song. We aren't "religious" people, but Linna does go to a local church school in Singapore (it's affordable, close to our home, and Linna loves it there). I can't get enough of Linna's cuteness as she sings "Jesus Loves Me", and I'm pretty sure I'll be a blubbering mess at the school concert in a couple months.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Ok, you can pee yourself.

Linna (after the pee incident) playing with her pal
Brae from Australia at the Interlace in Singapore.
My 3-year-old and I experienced a "first" together in Singapore today. Remember when I said I would NEVER be that mom who encouraged her kid to poop in an airline seat? Well, I feel like I came pretty close today.

After school, we were waiting for the bus to take us to a friends' place for a swim/play-date (it's literally a quick 10-minute ride), when Linna said, "I have to go pee pee Mama." Normally, this kid has SOLID bladder control, but at this point she was dancing around like she was going to explode. According to the app on my phone, our bus would be arriving in 3 minutes, and there wasn't a restroom in our close proximity. I calmly told my 3-year-old to "hold it", just as I've said to her a million times before. Normally, she can, but this time, I watched the pee start to trickle down her leg. I knew I had to think fast.

"Alright, sit on the curb and pee... in your clothes... it's OK.", I told my 3-year-old, as I looked around to see if anyone was watching, while sweat streamed down my face.

For a split second, I seriously thought about holding her over the garbage bin so she could relieve herself... but that might draw attention to the situation. For a moment, I wished she was a boy so I could quickly put her in the corner, and block her public display of urination from those prying, JUDGING eyes. However, even the failure to flush a toilet is illegal in Singapore, so I can't imagine what type of death sentence we'd receive for my 3-year-old's public urination.

As I searched through my backpack for something... ANYTHING that could help me in this situation (I'm still not sure what I was looking for), a mom with an American accent walked by and asked, "Can I help you with anything?". Trying to look like I have my sh*t together while frantically searching through the backpack for ANYTHING absorbent, I stood up and exclaimed, "Oh no, I'm fine! But thanks so much!". Thinking back on this now, I'm sure she saw my sweaty, disheveled, and frantic state, all while watching my 3-year-old with pee dripping down her leg. Thank you random, American woman... I now wish I would have asked if you had a spare diaper.

With little time to react to the situation, I told my 3-year-old to sit on the curb to relieve herself. That's right Singapore... I am an unprepared mom without a "helper", and my kid peed on your sidewalk! I'm so sorry.

I watched as our bus came around the corner, and within 30 seconds I removed Linna's pee-soaked school uniform, and threw on her hooded towel that I had in the backpack.

That's right, my child pissed on a sidewalk in Singapore, AND walked onto a public bus wearing only a towel. I wish you could have seen the looks I received as I put Linna into her swimsuit on the bus, while trying to stuff her pee-soaked clothes into my backpack... ALL while pretending the whole situation was completely normal.

When we finally arrived at our friends' place, I explained the situation to my fellow mamas here in Singapore, and it really brought me back to reality. This sh*t happens all the time, and as a parent you just have to roll with the punches. However, I'm still 110% convinced that I would never encourage my child to poop in her airplane seat. I promise.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Throwing a birthday party for our 3-year-old in singapore.

Princess balloon centerpiece for Linna from THAT Balloons.
This year, our Minnesota Baby turned three years old in Singapore. So, we decided to host a birthday party for Linna at our condo. If you know me at all, you know that I love going "all out" when it comes to parties... especially when it's a party for my kid. This was my first time planning a birthday party for Linna in Singapore, and it's not as easy as it was organizing her birthday parties back home in Minnesota.

No car.
No Target.
And no family here to help with the planning, and/or party itself.

However, we do have one thing in Singapore that we don't have back home in Minnesota... A POOL! And since Linna is a little fish, we decided to plan a pool party for her third birthday. After doing some searching online and talking to a few other moms here in Singapore, I found a company called Kids Pool Party Singapore. It's a team of children's party-planners and swim coaches that will come to your pool, and provide entertainment and games for kids' pool parties in Singapore. Fantastic!

Everyone starting to get into the pool for some fun with the Kids Pool Party Singapore crew!

Ball toss in the pool!

Since we had kids at Linna's party of a wider age-range (infants to 7-years-old), the staff at Kids Pool Party Singapore worked with me to plan appropriate games and activities for all the kids. They showed up with a TON of pool toys, floaties, boats, etc., and the crew entertained the kids and parents in the pool for an hour. We sang songs, played ball-games, did obstacle courses, and the kids loved going for rides in the big inflatable boats. The crew was SO great with all the kids! I loved that I didn't have to worry about buying, inflating, and storing a bunch of pool floaties, and professionals did the entertaining for me. After the party, they made sure that the pool area was exactly as they found it when they arrived. I would use this company again in a heartbeat, as everyone seemed to have a great time. Plus, they put me in contact with a coach named Garett Lee at Little Swim School, who teaches baby swimming lessons in Singapore. We've been looking for a swimming coach/school here, that can work on swim strokes with Linna. We'll see how that pans out!

Balancing on the floating mat and jumping through hoops!

This was a fun activity for all the kids at the party!

*** Get 10% off a Kids Play or Super Kids party package from Kids Pool Party Singapore,
if you book by November 30th, 2014 and mention "Minnesota Baby". ***

We also booked OG from THAT Balloons for the first hour of Linna's birthday party, after we saw entertainers from this company working at an Easter Sunday Brunch that we took my in-laws to this year. OG made some pretty amazing balloon animals and toys for the kids, and I was incredibly impressed with the princess centerpiece he created out of balloons for Linna. It was so cute to watch Linna's little friends all dressed up in super-hero and princess costumes, running around with balloon swords and balloon animals. With the crazy expensive cost of helium-inflated balloons in Singapore, I'd much rather have a great entertainer MAKING balloon animals for Linna and her friends! The balloons ended up all over our condo, looking like great decorations anyway:)

OG from THAT Balloons giving two little princesses their balloon animals.

Birthday girl Linna and her balloon dog.
OG in action, making balloons for the kids.
(Sorry, but Papa Saigh held the phone the wrong way when recording.)

I decided to make/prep all the food for the party myself, and went the "simpler" DIY route. Cheese and jam sandwiches (not together) for the kids, and a chicken cashew pasta salad for the adults. We also served veggies with hummus and ranch dip ('Merica), an assortment of fruits, popcorn in bags for the kids, trail mix (peanuts, raisins, and M&Ms), lollipops and marshmallows, and just bottled water and juice boxes. Simple items, but it meant me prepping/chopping in the kitchen for 8+ hours the night before the party. My biggest headache was the birthday cake. I found a picture of a princess cupcake/cake on Pinterest that I knew I couldn't mess up, as long as I could successfully bake a few dozen cupcakes, and frost them. The cupcakes (from scratch) turned out as good as one could expect from a beginner, but my homemade frosting attempt was a major FAIL. I attempted the White Cloud Icing recipe that I found on Pinterest, and instead of ending up with a beautiful fluffy icing... I created a liquid catastrophe. I have no clue where I went wrong with this recipe, but it's nothing a trip to the store (reason #185 I miss having a car... and a Target down the street from my house) and a few tubes of store-bought frosting couldn't fix. By the time I was finished putting frosting on the last cupcake, I was just about ready to collapse from exhaustion after all the work I did for this two-hour birthday party... for my 3-year-old.

Birthday party food.

Birthday sign that Mama and Papa Saigh made for Linna's party.

Princess cupcakes.

Goodie bags for Linna's friends with popsicles and candy inside!

My wonderful neighbors Simone and Eva, and my new
good friend Marian. Don't know what I'd do without these ladies!

Linna, her school pal Emilia, and Emilia's sister Victoria. Darling princesses!

Overall, the party was a huge success. Linna crashed for an afternoon nap after the last party guest left, and I think she survived the day on candy, cake, and juice. I know this because of the vomit incident she had while we were swimming with friends later that afternoon:( A good lesson on the importance of limiting our sugar intake, I guess.

Cute gift from Dolly, Brian, Clare and Casey!

Singapore friends.

Some of Linna's pals that we met at our first condo in Singapore.
Happy, sugar-filled birthday girl!

Thanks to all of our friends in Singapore who came out to celebrate our little 3-year-old! Linna received so many wonderful gifts, and it was really nice being surrounded by our "family" here in Singapore on this special day.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Linna's final thoughts as a 2-year-old.

I can't believe that we have a 3-year-old. Well almost. Tonight, before Linna went to bed, I sat down with her to have a little chat. I wanted to capture her last moments as a 2-year-old. I asked her simple questions about her current "favorites", and I just love her responses. FYI, Linna was born on August 8th, and since we're in Singapore, we are celebrating her birthday on Singapore time (Singapore is 13 hours ahead of Minnesota). Technically, when we wake up on August 8th in Singapore, it's really only nighttime on August 7th in Minnesota. This is great because we get to celebrate everything twice:)