Sunday, December 27, 2009

Final Day - Trip to Bangkok

Our final day in Bangkok! We dedicated this last day to more SHOPPING! Had breakfast at the hotel and managed to eat a bowl of Tom Yum soup before we left...:)It was authentic; but somehow I prefer those in Singapore... Never realise that Thai food is actually quite sweet...

The best part about staying in Amari Watergate is its location... We were directly opposite The Platinum; it is the largest and newest wholesale fashion mall in Bangkok! Shopping in Platinum was crazy... People were "armed" with huge bags! And if you buy 3 or more pieces from a single shop, you can get as high as 50% discount for accessories and 30% discount for apparel! We brought 2 half-filled luggages, 1 empty luggage and 2 haversacks to Bangkok. We returned with all of them filled to the max...:) Felt so satisfied!

Checking in now; Debbie was so tired...zzzzz..... Notice Denise's princess luggage? It is a birthday gift from our domestic helper. It cost $49.90, about 1/6 of her monthly salary...:( She bought this for Denise in Singapore; in time for this trip... She is always very generous with us!

Well, with all our luggages filled, you can imagine the amount of stuff we bought! Above were the gifts for our friends, Christmas presents for all the children, gifts for Denise's teachers and many others...

Then there were the food stuff! We bought snacks for Denise's classmates and refreshment for our CGs. It did not help that we were coming back to 3 days of fasting. We were so tempted to eat them all before we come back to Singapore...:)

Of course, last but not least, clothings, accessories and presents for OURSELVES!!! I always envy people that come back with loads of shopping stuff! This was definitely an unforgetable trip for me. Cheap food, cheap shopping, nice hotel... People warned me that Bangkok is very hot...but not at all! In fact, Singapore can be hotter at times... Probably the only thing I was paranoid about was losing my wallet and money or worse my children... But just need to be extra careful and not to be too engrossed with your own shopping...

Was thinking that this would be the last overseas trip before Denise starts P1 next year... BUT!!! We are going to KL next week! Hahah..... Will be leaving on Sunday afternoon so that we can reach KL in time to celebrate Denise's birthday with her KL buddies....

Yippee!!! KL, here we come....

Day 3: Trip to Bangkok

We arrived early at Siam Ocean World. SIL did not join us; she decided to go for her massage. We ate MacDonalds and the children had their fun posing with Ronald MacDonald; the Thai way...:)

Bought the all-inclusive tickets so that we can enjoy all the shows. This is another day of dedicated fun for the children.

Like the UnderWater World in Sentosa, there are the usual displays. One of the more interesting one was the 4 weeks old shark embryo!

Part of the package we bought includes a "Fish Spa" experience. While Debbie was enjoying herself at the indoor playground, the rest of us were soaking our feets in the jacuzzi. Didn't manage to capture the fishes, but there were little fishes nibbling at our feet...:)

Then we came to the tunnel, exactly like the one in Sentosa...:) We watched the shark-feeding show and penguine show.

Some funny shots!

This must be the most interesting display! The largest ice cube in the world! It actually has a frozen fish inside.

And there were the usual mascots for some kodak-moments.

We also get to sit on the glass boat to get close and personal with the fishes. Of course we were not allowed to touch them. From here, we also get to tour their back office, where they treat the fishes when they are sick or rear them when they are still young...

Our final stop was a 4D movie about A Snowman and Christmas. Debbie was not allowed to enter because the staff was afraid that she would be scared. More photos before we left...:) This excursion turned out to be another highlight for the children.

We had dinner at Chinatown. Found a recommended restaurant "海外天". Ordered the usual Shark's fin soup, oyster omelette, vegetable... The only thing that we did not try was the bird nest... I guess we were not its fans...:p

After dinner, we walked a little more around Chinatown and eventually went back to our hotel. It was a tiring day... Decided to sleep early so that we can start the final day with more shopping...and shopping!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Day 2: Trip to Bangkok

We began Day 2 at 9 a.m. - Trip to Dream World, Bangkok. Do not expect Disney! It is an Amusement Park about 30mins ride from the City. I booked the tickets online. For 1000 baht per person (equiv. SGD$42), it includes 2-way Hotel transfers, Entrance fee, unlimited rides, Entrance to Snow Town, Entrance to all the shows and a buffet lunch. Free for Debbie...:)

We didn't know that Thailand just celebrated the King's birthday and the following Monday and Tuesday were public holidays. Thank God the Amusement Park was not crowded.

The first thing that welcomed us was the Love Garden. The flowers were well-maintained and beautiful! Can almost imagined couples holding their solemnization ceremony here...

The next stop was 7 Wonders of the World. My favourite was the Great Wall of China :)

Of course, what is an Amusement Park without the kiddo characters for photo sessions. Debbie was real excited when she spotted them! She wanted to take pictures with all of them :)

Told you "do not expect Disney"; it was nothing like having Mickey and Minnie...haha... When we brought the kids to Hong Kong, Debbie was still a baby... Perhaps I should show her the photos to remind her that we brought her to Disneyland before :p

However the rides were pretty similar... There were the usual cars, boats and train rides. As we bought the all-inclusive tickets, we did not have to buy tickets for the rides.

Next was the Fantasy Land. We took some "funny" photos with the giant "buried underground"...

There were the Magic Sword, Little Frog Prince, the usual castle and a little corner called Uncle Tom's Farm. Denise watched the Animal Show while the ladies went shopping at the Wacoal and Naraya outlets located within the Amusement Park...:)

There was a simple Sleeping Beauty Castle. A mannequin was sleeping inside... JX and Denise posed for "funny" photos again!

Besides the Animal Show, we were also treated to a Hollywood Action Show. There were explosives, fire, stunts etc... Good break for us to rest our feet...:)

The next highlight was to the Snow Town. Denise paired with Daddy while Debbie paired with me. The experience was pretty scary...:p As they did not have jackets in Debbie's size, she was literally "hidden" in the photo...:) We only took 1 ride down the steep slope, while Denise and JX went for several rounds.

We ended the trip at 4pm. Went back to our hotel to freshen up before heading towards Isetan for our dinner. What else but Japanese food!!! There were a stretch of 4-5 Japanese restaurants located on the top floor. We chose the one that had a Japanese manager...:) Thinking that the food might be more authentic... Solid and cheap!

After dinner, we visited the Supermarket for yummy ice-cream. We also bought quite a couple of Pocky that comes in unique flavours that we do not find in Singapore.

No photos... but after we dropped off the children and my MIL in the hotel, SIL, JX and I decided to venture to the Suan Lum Night Market. Didn't buy anything much, except for some Thailand goodies for family and CG.

This was also where I tried foot massage for the FIRST TIME! Yah, first time!!! I am not a massage person but it was very cheap, so decided to give it a try... I told the lady it was my first experience, please "have mercy" on my feet... Not bad...:)

Day 3: Trip to the Siam Ocean World...

Monday, December 14, 2009

Day 1: Trip to Bangkok

We were planning for an Overseas Trip with the kids before Denise goes to P1 next year. Initially it was Malacca, however, decided to venture to Bangkok instead. We invited MIL and SIL along...:)

Denise received a Princess luggage as Birthday and Christmas present from our domestic helper! Mind you, this luggage cost her 1/6th of her monthly salary!!! If you earn $3000 a month, it's equivalent to spending $500... She is SO generous with us! It was the right choice bringing her to Bangkok with us :)

Flying SQ was the next right decision we made! I have always liked the food they serve, especially for the kids. A wide spread of choices from starters, snacks, main course and dessert... It was a breeze flying them as they entertain themselves with the KrisWorld in-flight entertainment. Within 2 hours, we arrived at BKK... Here we go!

This was JX's 2nd trip to BKK but my first... It was interesting to see what colourful taxis they have... We managed to hire a MPV taxi to take all 7 of us to our hotel. We were all excited. Before we left, I bought the tickets, booked the hotel, planned the itinerary and we are ready to shop, eat and have fun!

Next right decision we made was booking us at Amari Watergate, located at Pratunum area! JX stayed here previously when he attended a Business Conference held in their ballroom. He highly recommends this hotel for its convenience and cleanliness. It is a 5 star hotel and it is located directly opposite Platinum Shopping Centre, which became our shopping haven for the next few days...:)

Travelling with kids, it's important that we choose a clean and nice hotel. We got our adjoining rooms; a Twin and a Double. Not only were we upgraded to Grand Deluxe rooms which was bigger with a nice lounge, 40" LCD TV and DVD player, Amari offered free extra beds for 3rd staying pax...:)

The best part about this trip is being able to bring my MIL for holidays. The last trip we made together was to attend JX's buddy's wedding in Jakarta almost 9 years ago! The next few days were exciting as we have planned for the children to visit Dreamworld (Bangkok), Siam Ocean World and for the adults, eat, shop and more shopping...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Water Baptism

Last weekend was a crazy week... Besides Denise's Graduation, I had a CG outing, attended 2 Water Baptism services and brought Denise for a classmate's birthday party @ Polliwogs.

First stop, Danny, Tess, Jacelyn, Yongmei, Joseph, Daryl and I met on Sunday morning at KKMC for Yongmei's Water Baptism. We went for lunch at iCaramel at Luxe (beside Cathay). One of those little cafe with very pretty cakes...:)

Next stop was JW to support Charles and Eileen. They were supposed to be baptised the previous round but didn't because their eldest girl contracted H1N1.

It felt like their "wedding" as they walked down the pool together.

Finally, a group photo! Congratulations to Charles and Eileen!

Friday, December 04, 2009

Cultural Week

Denise learnt about different cultures in school. They had to wear either a Chinese or Indian costume to school. I managed to borrow a set from her classmate from India...:) I like the blue on her skin...

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Nov 27 - Denise's K2 Graduation

One of the greatest moments in Denise's life so far... Pat's Schoolhouse K2 Graduation has always been held in Raffles Hotel; Jubilee Hall. The tradition is that the students will put up an English and Chinese musical. Like all the proud parents there, we were filled with so much excitement!

Everyone was ready with their cameras and video cam. There were much hype and excitement in the air while the parents waited to enter the Hall.

The ceremony started with the Graduation March and an Opening Song item. It is a tradition that they will sing "We The Children". It is a very touching song; talking about "we the children are golden, we shine like stars in the night..." A few mothers were tearing at this moment... After the song, Mrs Patricia Koh, the Founder of Pat's Schoolhouse, presented every child with their Graduation Ring! It is a silver ring with their names engraved on it...

The concert started with the Chinese performance. The amazing 6 year olds had to sing, dance and act! Here, Denise was one of the villagers kids. She had a few solo lines.

3 centers; Halifax, Buckley and Siglap combined for this concert. It was amazing how the teachers improvised the script and songs, and cheoreograhed the dance moves. I heard the props was designed by one of the teachers too!

The English musical was abstracted from "The Little Prince".

Denise had 2 roles here... A Flower and an One-eyed monster of a planet...:)

Again, the children sang, danced and acted... They put up an awesome performance. The best part was no one single child stole the limelight. Everyone was given an equal chance to shine and had their moments!

The teachers must have felt the most relieved and satisfied during the last curtain call! A few months of hard work.... Finally it's over!

After the concert, parents were busy taking photos of their children. Managed to take pictures of Denise with her teachers...

It was already 10.30p.m. but the children insisted that they wanted to go for "supper" together. Well, we brought them to McDonalds at Bras Basah! It was a crazy sight! They were eating and singing at the top of their voice!

One of the best thing that happened to me after sending Denise to Pat's is that I made a group of mummy friends...:) They are one of the greatest mums around. We look forward to every kid's party where the mothers will just hang out and catch up with each other. We will plan for Teachers Day event for their teachers and often think of ways for the children to have fun. Even before the graduation, we are already planning for a March get-together next year!

With sadness and excitement, this graduation closes a chapter of Denise's life... And opens her to another milestone... She started school when she was 2.5 years old. It has never been a problem for her to adapt to any new environment. I look forward to her starting her Primary Education in FMS(P)...:)