Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Boy

Jace has probably had the hardest time with our move to Singapore, with him declaring almost daily that "This is the worst day of my life!!"  

But this afternoon has been pretty great. I hopped in the pool with Jace and Brighton to give him a "swimming lesson."  I started out having him swim from one side to the other, just to see if he could make it.  He thrashed around, face in the water, slowly making his way to the side.  I lifted him up about 3/4 of the way through because it looked like he was really struggling. As soon as he gulped in some air, he said, "Whoa! I am really good at this!!"   I love his confidence. ☺️

 Jace loves going under water and today he discovered diving for stuff.  I helped push him to the bottom over and over again to retrieve rocks, loose tiles, used band aids, you name it. 

After the hundredth time doing this, Jace surfaced gasping for breath and declared:

"THIS... [wheeze, splutter] IS THE BEST...  [cough] DAY... [choke] OF MY LIFE!!

That just warmed my heart.  I love that boy so much.  

After we were done and he had changed into his clothes, he came to me and said that his nipples hurt.  I explained that was probably from his rash-guard being wet and rubbing against them.  He then said he wished he had a rash guard for swim trunks, because he doesn't have nipples on his legs. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Es Car Go!

Kate had her first snail!  Her friend showed her how it was done first.  14 times.  

I had to try one too, of course. The texture was firmer than I had anticipated. Unfortunately, this did not help the tastiness factor. 

Another young and naive friend decided he would hide a snail in Mike's burrito (Yes, he ordered a burrito) while he was away from his plate. I was able to avert this suicidal disaster just in time.  Or maybe it was homocidal, because if Mike found out he had accidentally eaten snail, I honestly believe he might have died. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Welcome Year of the Goat!

So Chinese New Year happened.  It's a big deal here that lasts 2 weeks.  This year's mascot is a goat/ram, which just happens to be my Chinese zodiac sign!  I thought this was pretty cool until I found out that every year your animal comes up will be an unlucky year.  However, one can stave off this unluckiness by wearing something red that was given to you by an elder.  So feel free to hook me up, older friends and relatives!

I took the kids to China town to see all the decorations and hopefully catch a lion dance.  It was a mad house.  They closed several streets to accommodate the masses, but many cars didn't like it, so the tried to drive down the streets anyway.  Usually in "man vs. car" the car wins, but "car vs. hoards of people" results in a stalemate with a lot of honking and yelling but no movement.
So I took some pictures and got out of there. Behold:

Kate and Faith's Chinese teacher helped them make some New Year decorations.
For CNY day, we went to the zoo and watched a lion dance:
Probably the kids' favorite part of CNY is that adults hand out little red envelopes filled with money to kids.  :)

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Crime and punishment

Jace disapproves of kissing.  Whenever he sees Mike kiss me, he threatens to tell our parents so they'll spank us.  We make a point to kiss in front of him often, and he makes a point to cover his eyes and make gagging noises. 

Just now in the car, the loathsome topic of kissing came up, and Jace said, 

"If you guys kiss, I'm going to punch you in the face!"

We all laughed, then I told Jace he really shouldn't say things like that, even if he's joking.  He replied:

"I'm not joking. I'm really going to do it."

Saturday, February 28, 2015

County Fair

Yesterday was the local school's carnival, which they call the County Fair.  Since it had been almost a full day since I'd done some really profuse sweating, I decided to take the kids on over!  I told the kids to get shoes on so we could go to the county fair, and Jace complained,

"But Mom! Why we hafta go there? I already know how to count: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,16,17,18,19,21,22,23,27,29,20.  I can count to 20."

County Fair. Tee hee!

Faith getting her flirt on.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Egg painting

When I saw that egg painting was on the agenda for art today, I thought we would be painting eggs. Silly me!  Turns out that during the Byzantine Empire, egg yolks were mixed with minerals to make the paint shiny.  

Thank you, Byzantine Empire for teaching me yet another use for the fabulous egg.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Javan Mynah

This bird is everywhere in Singapore.  Not this exact one.  It's not like he travels the island with lightning speed.  But about a million birds just like him are everywhere.  I hope that's clearer.  Brighton is constantly shouting "TWEET TWEET!!" everywhere we go.  They are pretty used to humans and seem relatively harmless.  Until today.
Today we witness our first act of gang violence in Singapore. 
We were just sitting at the table, doing some homework, when suddenly we heard what sounded like a flock of birds enter our house.  They were actually just outside the window on the patio, but they were LOUD.  We went to see what was happening, and I could scarcely believe what I saw. 
About 8 of these birds were in a group.  One was being pinned to the ground by 2 other birds, and another bird was beating the tuna salad out of him.  The rest were gathered around to watch.  It looked like they were going to kill the poor little guy, so we ran out there yelling and waving our arms.  They all flew away, including the beaten one, so he must have been okay.
Brighton yelled at the fleeing birds and summed up what we were all feeling:
"Bad tweet tweet!"

Sunday, February 8, 2015

A Day in the Life

A typical day for us here in Singapore isn't too different from back home.  

Wake up, get breakfast for the kids, clean up the kitchen, kill as many flies as possible, then throw in a load of laundry.

Don't forget to check for lizards.

Then we might take a trip to the market so we can eat something other than peanut butter sandwiches for the next few days.  It's best to go early before it gets too hot.  Remember to be prepared for inclement weather!

I am also supposed to water the plants. Every day.  This isn't going that well.  I thought I could get away with watering every few days since it rains often.  I've killed two trees.

This non-dead tree is my favorite:).

The other night we walked over to KFC as an upgrade to PB&J.  Pretty thrilling, I know :). 

In between these things is a lot of home school.  And fly killing, of course.

Wrap up the day with some time in the pool with friends.  

Life is good!

Monday, January 26, 2015


The best way to beat the heat (beside cranking up the AirCon) is to go swimming.  Thus, Kate and Faith swim in our little pool just about every day.  All that chlorine is doing terrible things to Kate's hair.  While we were at the markets yesterday we passed a salon, and she asked if she could chop it off. Yes please!

I opened the door to the tiny salon and squeezed inside, leaving the kids to wait outside.  Eight clients and as many stylists stopped what they were doing and turned to watch me.  I asked if they took walk-ins, and was answered with uncomprehending looks.  I eventually managed to convey that I wanted my daughter's hair cut, and they pointed to a seat.  Eye brows around the room raised further as I ushered 3 of the kids inside.  (Jace preferred to sit and sweat outside.)  There was dead silence, which continued throughout the entirety of our stay.  I shushed my kids in vain as they made embarrassing comments, like, "There is black hair everywhere!! Why don't they clean it up?" 

One nice lady smiled and gave my kids suckers.  Most of the others stopped craning their necks to look at us, but a couple openly stared at us the whole time.  It was weird. 

Singapore is a very diverse country, and I hadn't yet felt out of place or unwelcome.  But walking into that salon yesterday, I think I crossed some sort of unmarked boundary, or broke an unwritten rule.  Or maybe it was written.  After all, I can't read Chinese.  Though today I did learn how to say eyebrow in Mandarin! :)    Anyway, here is Kate's new 'do.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


The flight of misery is over and we are here at last!  Though I really shouldn't complain about flying in a jet with individual tv screens and occasional snacks and bathrooms.  When I think of how oceans were crossed way back when, I count my blessings.

We should move into our house today, even though the belongings we shipped haven't arrived yet.  Our landlords seem awesome, so that's good.  We discovered a costco-like warehouse here, so I know everything will be okay.  

The weather has been amazing so far.  On our first day here, it was actually a little too chilly to go swimming! That didn't stop us, though.  The locals said this is not typical.  They say it usually rains evey afternoon, but we hadn't seen a drop of rain yet.  Until yesterday.  When we exited the aforementioned warehouse, rain was thundering down.  The drve home felt like we were driving through a waterfall.  It was SO hard to see!  This brought me to a very important conclusion.  I need to get me an umbrella.