Saturday, December 30, 2017

School Holiday 2017

5 weeks of school holidays totally just flew by. i had no plan whatsoever for the boys, just some quality time with their ps3 so that they'll leave the girls alone & not disrupt their afternoon nap time.

i started the holidays doing i usually do at the start of holidays - reorganising wardrobes. since i need to move uniforms around - hand down some, replenish some, throw away some, give away some - i also looked at the boys other clothes. the guestroom downstairs was full of boxes, some empty some full. i asked the boys to put aside the clothes they have outgrown and i went through them to see whether they should be handed down or given away. once i have sorted those piles, i brought down those to give away and reorganised the boxes in the guestroom. ariff and akmal helped me pack and label 9 boxes and are awaiting to give them away.

i also reorganised everyone's personal file. amir brought home a lot of certificates on his last day of primary school and i had put them aside until i find the energy to file them (yes, filing takes up a whole lot of energy). currently, i have sorted out all documents into 2 files - baby & kindy and primary school. i'll be adding secondary school files soon. amani's documents are at the moment in a plastic folder as i have not gotten hers ready yet.

with amani being so small, we had no holiday planned this year. we did, however, slot in a quick 4-day weekend getaway down south to jb and singapore. it was a good drive to test the car we got a few weeks earlier. it was also still early in december and the roads and universal studios were not packed with cars and with people. it was actually a nice drive down and a nice drive back and a pretty ok time at the theme park. the jb-singapore trip entries can be found on our travelblog.

as for the school stuff, i went quite low key this time around. amir needed new uniforms, of course, since he'll be changing schools. ariff needed new uniforms as well, since he's gotten much bigger the past year (and because he was wearing last year's uniforms and they've been eating his tummy and sides). akmal's uniform had been ordered and he'll be recycling his sra uniform. asyraf's wearing this year's uniform for sk and getting new sra uniform as he too have outgrown his.

as usual, i buy uniform really early, as soon as the holiday begins because i need to get the name tags and badges sewn and then iron them. i buy early and procrastinate on the other 2 tasks, usually. this year, i had to settle the badges and name tags on my own, as my late mom would do them the past few years. i couldn't be bother sending them to a shop so i used to uhu glue method. i used this method on some uniform last year, especially those with name tags that i had received after school had commenced. i don't particularly like this method as its difficult to take the name tags off at the end of the year. i prefer the name tags to be intact as i'll use them again for the upcoming years.

but this time around, as asyraf & ariff will only have one more year at sra, i chose the uhu method as i dont need to use their name tags again. ariff will also probably be wearing the same sk uniform for the next 2 years so i don't need to take them off. or maybe i'll just get more when the school commences so that i'll have back-up if i need to get him new uniforms. so the day after getting the uniforms, i settled the name tags and badges and ironed them.

we bought the boys' shoes and socks the day after we bought the uniform. it wasn't even december yet and we've settled uniform, socks and shoes. the lady at the shoe store said its a good move to get them early on. but of course...

next on my list were stationeries. i actually planned to get them at the stationery warehouse shop nearby. but we had vouchers from the uniform shopping spree so we went back to the same shop and got stationeries there. i managed to check almost all using the voucher (plus some cash). i've got a bit left to buy but generally they're all settled. i also got some school sets online from mph and that sorta settled their basic stationery needs.

the boys are quite lucky this year to be getting really good text books. i went through their stack of books and practically all don't require re-wrapping. i was about to jump up high until i saw ariff's stack. i went through the core subjects, ok...i expected them to need re-wrapping because of the usage, then i realised all his books were not wrapped. and ariff broke his wonderful surprise, he helped un-wrap the old wrappers for me. oh ariff!! ok ok...only 13 books, not too bad. i managed to do them all in less than an hour.

i went to the school bookstore on the third week of school holidays. i get this done quite early usually - right after uniforms. but this year i wasn't in the mood. i really don't like the school enforcing this activity book culture because there have been many instances where the books were not used, or only a portion used, and you can't recycle them as they change publishers every single year. and then of course the book wrapping (urghh!) so i was really not into buying books at all. i opted not to wrap the activity books this time. after 6 years, i just don't care anymore about wrapping books haha! so its just labeling them and writing names, which was a breeze!

we'll only get sra text books once school commences so i can put them off for now. i don't normally wrap sra activity books, so there's not much more left to wrap.

after much dilly dallying, we finally went to amir's school to get his starter kit and books. amir has loads of writing books but only a small number of reference books, which can be used until he is in form 3 so that's a refreshing change.

we spent the rest of the school holidays at home basically. we did some movie outings - justice league, the long-awaited star wars sequel no 8. the boys had a few outings with friends and went bowling with tiza. we went for a couple of birthday gatherings.

we also had a staycation over the long christmas weekend and registered amir, asyraf and akmal in a kids marathon in sepang the same weekend. that's about it, actually. pretty low key holiday this time around.

after 6 years of spending hours at the agama school on the first day of school to settle fees, i'm so happy that this year parents are invited to pay fees during the school holidays. alhamdulillah, thank you ustaz and ustazah for doing this. so happy we'll have a much more calm first day of school for the first time in 7 years.

we ended the holidays with amir's secondary school orientation. not my first choice of a secondary school but oh well, i accept and i move on and i hope and pray for the best for him at this place.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Christmas Weekend Staycation

we made an impromptu decision to have a bit of hotel sleepover towards the end of the school holidays. we haven't been going out and the boys have been on the ps3 and football non-stop the 4 weeks so we thought let's get away for a bit.

everywhere's booked and jammed and don't look that appealing so we decided on kl city centre. we browsed around and saw a good deal from pullman hotel which is near pavilion and near klcc for food and walkaround stuff. its generally and sleep-in & swim staycation and having easy food options nearby is always welcomed.

we had a birthday invitation on the saturday before christmas and packed our stuff to bring over with us. the boys loved the party and seeing homely christmas decoration up close. they've only seen at malls so those don't count. because they were having a really good time, we left the party later than planned.

we got to the hotel at around 7pm and were at that hungry-not-hungry stage. i thought of having an early night as the boys were registered for a kids run the next morning. but somehow we ended up walking towards pavilion to get swimming goggles. we didn't come back that late but the walk tired us out so we were prepared for giving the run a miss, in case hubby or the boys were not up to it.

of course, once that was in our minds, it actually happened. no one woke up sunday morning and before we knew it, it was almost 10am. we woke up and showered and drove to klcc to have brunch and a bit of a walkabout. we knew we couldn't walk much as we knew it would be crowded. we had a good brunch aseana which was surprisingly very quiet. the boys and amira wanted to see the fountain so we walked around for a bit before making our way back to the hotel as the boys wanted a long dip in the pool.

they went swimming for 5 hours, stopping to snack every so often. we stopped just before dinner time to check out the kids play area before leaving for pavilion as we've bought tickets to watch jumanji. the movie ended almost at midnight, which is a rarity for us to be up so late.

we had room service on monday so we woke up really late and took our time to enjoy breakfast. the boys asked for another dip in the pool, of course, but i stayed in the room as amani wanted her morning nap.

a short staycation but a nice getaway for the boys who were cooped up in the house the whole of the school holidays.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Happy Six Months Amani

i know people always say...dont be too fast growing up. i'm the opposite at the moment, hurry up and grow babies, that's my chant everyday.

i've been worried about amani's development. she's been on the relaxed side a lot. not moving much, not making much noise, other than her cries. not looking very active. i keep looking back at amira's pictures and going...why is amani not doing this, they're the same age. i dont take it too seriously and dont dwell on them much but at the back of my mind, i keep asking...why?

then she turned six months. and she held her head up. and she pushes her head back while being carried. and she's sitting on a high chair. and she entertains herself in the jumperoo. and she raises her chest and elbow when she's on her tummy. her feet are slowly pushing when she's on her tummy. and she mumbles a lot. and her hair grew. and i cry tears of joy. thank you baby. its like all the 6 months developments happened in just one week.

amani's started on solids a week before she turned 6 months. she's been looking at us eat. and opens her mouth when we feed ourselves. so we thought...ok, maybe she's ready. so we gave her carrot puree. she loves it, she gobbled down a bowl full and was asleep within 10 minutes. i monitored her the next couple of days. she was eating find (a bowl a day in the evening) but she wasn't passing motion. so i held off her food and gave her diluted milk for a couple of days and she was back to normal.

then i gave her smaller portion of 2 bowls a day and continued her milk for the next couple of days and she loves that the best. she would eat late in the morning and late in the evening and have 2 bottles in between and 1 full bottle at night.

amani's a bit behind on her immunisation as her pediatrician's on leave so i dont know how much she weighs currently. but i know she's getting more lean and less chubby, which is wonderful to see.


the value of marriage is not that adults produce children but that children produce adults - peter de vries

grown-ups never understand anything for themselves and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explainning things to them - antoine de saint-exupery
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