Monday, November 30, 2009

Auntie shopping - So *not* fun

As Wayne's in Zhengzhou this week, the task of grocery shopping fell on my shoulders, without the car. I made use of Rosabelle's lunch time to scoot off to Carrefour (eating a hasty lunch at 永和大王), and spent my next 1+ hour there. I normally have a grocery list, but it wasn't funny having to lug two huge bags of groceries back. I also sat a motor-taxi (albeit illegal 蹦蹦) for the first time since I got pregnant. Those things are like tuk-tuks in Bangkok, only more dangerous as they sometimes go in the face of traffic!

In the end, there were still some missing items I could not get, and during Rosabelle's dinner time, I walked to Tesco and got some of them (some, because the chicken rack, and cai xin, and kailan, all remain strangely elusive). I'm going to try my neighbourhood supermarket tomorrow, then it'd be a looong while before I go into another supermarket - I will seriously stab the eye of anybody who dares suggest a shopping trip there... I. am. in. urgent. need. of. PROPER. retail. therapy.

On to something more fun... this morning, Rosabelle was watching me apply my face and body creams (she likes to see me do it every night, but I was doing it in front of her this morning since I needed to look after her as the nanny was preparing her breakfast). She then pointed at my chin to indicate that I still had a spot of cream on my face, haha! After I hastily rubbed it in, she then copied me by rubbing around her chin. Today, whenever we ask her 'How does Mummy apply cream on the face?', she will do a hasty chin/mouth rub, so funny!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

The toddling Bunny's day out

As Rosabelle is fast outgrowing the pink bomber jacket (too short and tight), I had spotted another nice bomber jacket at Sanlitun area (Nali patio) the other day, but as it was our date night, I did not spend much time looking around the shop. So before Wayne went back to Zhengzhou, we went during the afternoon to grab a few items from the shop (two jackets, two hats, four pairs of socks, and one scarf). (After that, I came home and searched online - one of the jackets is selling for about RMB30 cheaper, inclusive of shipping costs from Shanghai, and even includes a faux fur lining around the hood - faint!!!)

In keeping with our Saturday routine of bringing Rosabelle out for lunch, the nanny and I took her to 花家怡园 just now, with her modeling her newest bunny hat (the bob makes her look so much more taller, eh?).
Before we settled into lunch and before the food came, the nanny kept her entertained as she toddled around the restaurant, chasing/scaring away an elder boy with her overwhelming warmth...
She did not dare to let go of the nanny's hands, but according to the latter, when I was bathing last night, Rosabelle took 7 steady steps on her own! Granted, she was rather apprehensive and after that kept bending down to maintain her balance, but it's a good start to walking independently, heh! Too bad, I again missed that, and she even tried another 6 steps after that. When I went out to see her, she only managed a shaky 3-4 steps before pouncing towards me or any other item for relieved support...

Lunch came, and she pretty much enjoyed the oatmeal caixin dish, the ngor hiang (五香) pork (and sliced pork from my porridge, which was too salty to give her on its own), as well as bits of the noodles and egg tart.
After that, she was happy as a lark playing around on the sofa.
Think the nanny must be glad for this outing, as it saves her alot of trouble in preparing for the food, and washing up after, and she can also enjoy a leisurely meal, heh! Recently, I got my ex-colleague to help me print out a stack of useful information for the nanny to read, like how to wash hands properly, top things to take note of in handling food, keys to food safety, and too bad there is no Chinese version of how to properly wash vegetables (though I'm not too sure if over-doing the washing will do anything to the vitamins...). At least when I let her read on her own from 'authoritative' sources, it'd save me much grief of having to explain the importance of such things to her... I follow this site on Beijing health, written by an ang mor doctor, pretty regularly, and got the sources from there.

At least I'm glad our Ayi is quite open/receptive to comments/suggestions/criticisms(s?), and will try her best to accommodate my demands, heh! If I didn't know any better, I would have thought it's her food that made Rosabelle whine suddenly during lunch yesterday. I was preparing to go to the supermarket when after a few spoonfuls of porridge, Rosabelle started crying incessantly and refused to eat. So I got the nanny to carry her up and she immediately threw up her food. Oh dear! Maybe the food went down the wrong way, but she almost immediately also felt better and started smiling... hmm, she was ok and in high spirits after, so I'm not too worried - it could even be a side effect of the vaccine from the day before (vomiting is listed as one of the side effects).

These few days, I have witnessed Rosabelle being able to stack blocks/cylinders very well. She even managed to stack a long cylinder on top of a short one, and every time she stacks one successfully, she will go 'Yaaay!!!', and look at the nanny and/or I to applaud her before she starts clapping her own hands. Sometimes, even before she has put the block on properly, she will start shouting 'Yaaaay!!!' in anticipation, haha!

One development I'm not too entirely pleased with is that she is starting to open drawers at the TV console, so rather than go into a 'No, no, no!' game with her (which we of course have to reinforce all the time), I will instead use my finger to press subtlely against the drawer. Subtlely it is, because if she sees us using our fingers/hands to block, she will pull/push it away. So at least with a subtle blocking, she will try to open and give up after awhile, thinking the drawer is locked, haha!

A car's not an animal, Mummy!

Here it is, caught on video, the succession of 'sounds' that Rosabelle can make now. She had woken up from her afternoon nap just now, and I snapped a few shots of her to first warm up...
Then I went into our tried and tested routine of animal sounds, though she got a bit stumped at the 'car' bit, haha!

As the video was slightly cut off at the beginning with me asking her to make the 'chicken' sound, I took another asking about the chicken, and before I could go on to ask about other sounds, she gave me one of her usual naughty, cranky faces (will make fake, crying noises) when she's in one of those moods, especially right before bed-time when she's super sticky to me, haha!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

A few steps to mark end-of-rust-juice-day

I am trying to capture on video the times when Rosabelle is super-responsive and will reply with my requests to make the various sounds of animals and objects. She will be doing something, and I just have to start asking her 'What sound does XXX make?', and she will reply in succession without skipping a beat. I'm afraid that once I go and grab the camera and place it in front of her, she will be too distracted to continue, but I will endeavour to catch this on video for posterity, especially after she has recently picked up a horse sound (sounds like 'nnng' or 'huh, huh'). Nowadays, when she toddles past her playmat with pictures of trojan horses on it, she will automatically make the sound. Other sounds in the series include cat (meow meow), dog (ow ow), chicken (cuckoo coo), duck (kwak kwak), bee (bzzz), lion (awrrrrr), elephant (hnnnnng), cow (mmmmm), car moving (vrrr vrrr, coupled with hands waving), wind blowing (ooo, ooo, coupled with hands waving), bird flying (niao niao, coupled with flapping of hands with a pfft pfft sound), and train (hfft hfft). It's quite fun, really!

I'm also very pleased that at her 13th month check-up today (where she had a RMB1,810 pneumococcal booster jab!), she was cleared of her anemia, yaaay! That's her in the car seat, monkeying around, on the way there. She seems to be happier sitting in a front-facing position (read: does not struggle/cry when put in), as she can probably see more things this way.
Her trademark 'beautiful smile'...
Whilst waiting for the doctor - playing with beads at the table. She is very happy to be sitting in adult chairs (well, I know this is an Ikea children's chair, but it's a nice change from her usual constrained high chair and car seat).
She did not even cry when they took blood from her finger, just looking on curiously, and now has a normal 126 reading for her hemoglobin count. So it's adios to rust juice, which she was taking for the past two months - we no longer have to prepare the iron supplements and feed her twice a day, atta girl! The doctor advised that we need to continue to keep up with a balanced diet, and that is why I have introduced wheatgerm and peas (both high in iron) into her diet over the past few days. She loves eating peas, heh!

The doctor also answered some of the queries I had on whether it's too much for her to eat an egg a day (she averages about 5 times a week - answer: no problem); whether it's better to feed her chicken breast/pork loin rather than the fattier chicken thigh/pork rib (answer: no problem as well so long as most of the fats are removed, and she needs a certain amount of healthy fats in her diet as well); whether I should be concerned about a slight developing rash behind her left ear and nape of the neck (I applied talcum powder over the past two days - answer: just due to perspiration, so it's not fungal or anything); whether I need to start brushing her 8 teeth (answer: maybe after two years old, but for now, just to make sure we keep up with the good habit of rinsing the mouth after all foods, and twice a week, taking a damp cloth to gently cleanse the gums and teeth - only thing is after I nurse her, including the night feeds, she does not drink any water after, so my only consolation is that at least my milk's not so sweet!).

However, there is a nagging heart murmur that the doctor always picks up on each of these visits, but she thinks with Rosabelle's good growth (she's now 10.5kg - 86th percentile, and 79 cm - 95th percentile) and high activity levels, there should not be an issue. So perhaps just to ease our minds, we are likely to send her for an ultrasound when we go back over CNY next year. At the same time, we will probably let her take her chicken pox vaccination (for kids over a year old). After a year of age, the numbers of vaccinations decrease considerably, so actually the next mandatory jab for her is MMR at 18 months of age (15 months in Singapore).

I'll be glad when we are Singapore, if only for the fact that she can then feast on her favourite fruits like mango and guava without the exhorbitant prices! She loves eating mango, but as it's out of season now, and we had a few bad experiences with cheaper but sour/unripe mangoes, we had to resort to buying her a RMB65 one imported from Australia, gulp! As you can imagine, we are keeping that in the fridge for at least 5 feeds...

Very important milestone happened today - she toddled a few steps, unaided, from our bedroom door to the bed. Alas, I did not see that as I was in the other room, but the nanny called out excitedly to me as she said Rosabelle released her hands on the walker and quickly toddled away, hastily hanging onto the bed frame for fear of falling down. Heh, good job, my girl!

Wayne also did not get the chance to witness it as he had just left for the train station to go back home to Zhengzhou for a week to visit his parents (so that he can join us in Singapore over CNY). Rosabelle will definitely be missing her Papa as she will at times look for him when he's not in the house, and these days, she will peep at me taking baths (Wayne will carry her in), and she has learnt to put a finger to her mouth to make a 'Ssssh' sound (as Wayne has taught her) before sneaking in, haha! Once, when I carried her into the room to look for Wayne, she even made the 'Sssh' action to me in a conspiratorial manner before we went in, so clever!

So it's going to be us three ladies in the home over the next week (we told the nanny to be around on Saturday as well), heh! Thank goodness my neck pain from last week is disspating - I woke up one morning last week with a bad neck - probably from a lousy sleeping position - and quickly went to the blind folks massage centre that Wayne has been using. It alleviated some of the pain but he warned me it'd take a while to fully recover, sigh! Also, luckily, the 12th floor neighbour upstairs has ceased their 8:30am renovations of hammering and drilling, so we don't need Wayne to head upstairs and warn them (we've asked the maintenance office to send security guards up to tell them off for being so inconsiderate, but it's really not as effective).

I'm sure Daddy's going to miss his girl(s) too!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Did I just spend 4 hours on this?!

I’m a keen follower of certain blogs and sites, and when Super Kawaii Mama (amazing inspiration that SAHM does not give reason for dowdiness!) recommended this makeover site and warned that it could be highly addictive, I made light of it. Well, let’s just say that I could have better spent my last FOUR hours catching up on my precious beauty sleep!

Taaz lets you update a profile photo (I took my passport pic), and will make sure it has all the details right by letting you adjust the points where your eyes, face/hairline, mouth/teeth, eyebrows etc, down to where your irises appear, so it’s not just some random make-over.

First off, you can choose a shade of foundation – the below swings extremes when I chose the lightest and darkest shade – Ghostly vs Barbecued, wahaha!
Now with the right shade of foundation (and concealer, yes this site is that detailed), we go on to rosy cheeks. It even allows you to choose the angles/area you want the blusher to go on. Gaaak! Too much, too much – looks like I am suffering from a bad food allergy, or I got slapped!
So, after choosing an appropriate mix of blusher, I go on to the eyes, the soul of the face that experiments with eyeshadows, liners, eyelashes, lenses, and eyebrows. There are so many colors and ways of mixing/aligning the eyeshadows (even the intensity of the shimmers) that I had a hard time choosing, but you can be sure I did not end up with these!
I decided to do away with liners, as I’m not into heavily made-up, but check how thick, moss-green fake lashies look on me – don’t I look more like I belong in an algae jar? Buwahaha! Too transvestite-looking for me, so I skip the fake lashies too…
Next, on to eye colour. I usually wear brown-colored lenses, so I figured I should try something different – with the reds; conjunctivitis anyone?
Or looking like I could spew foam at the mouth and grow fangs and bite limbs off little children at any time with the yellows?
So, blue it is, to make me look like a fake ‘ang mor (Caucasian).
Next, on to lippy time. A case of too Hot vs too Cold…
And then a nice balance in the coral shade I settled upon, with nice liner to boot. I even chose to plump up my lips to the maximum (nothing unnatural like Daisy Duck), and whiten my teeth, haha!
I had great fun with hair time! I’ve been real lazy, and have not had a trim in 7 months! Coming from somebody who did her hair colour every 8 weeks, and had a trim every 6 weeks in the past, this is totally unforgivable…but my stylist is in town, and it’s a chore to get down all the way and see him, and my hair is growing out ok…well, no excuses, I need my haircut soon, but in the mean time, I experimented with different dos that allowed you to don different actresses’ styles. The styles sometimes look weird because I’m supposed to load a picture that has my hair tied up, so my own long hair can be seen at times, hohoho! However, it allows you to flip and adjust, which I’m too lazy to do, and even experiment with hair colors (think highlights and lowlights!).
Afro queen… A Gwyneth Paltrow Bob that makes me look like a dog…
Curls like Simba, king of the jungle – ROOOAARRRR!
Romantic bangs and curls…
Oooh, somebody’s looking Mumsy…
Why do I look like Pan Meichen?
This in reality is someone’s hair, not a wig, though it looks hideous on me.
This strangely looks like me when I used to have coloured hair – when I did not comb my hair, that is…
I know which hairstyles do NOT suit me…
Hmmm… I seem to be inclining towards curls…
This is something I could live with, heh!
So that’s the end of my rather minor make-over, hoho…but I did something drastic with the first make-over, seems more like make-down than make-up with the horrible outcome! It finally allows you to put on sunglasses, but I did away with the make-over above since I wanted the make-up to be seen. This one below's just for further laughs...
Fun aside, this is a really useful site for those of us who wonder if we look good in the newest shade of lippy/eyeshadow, or with a different hairstyle/colour, or even with that pair of shades. If you like what you created, you just click on 'What I'm wearing' to generate a list of the make-up used so you can get individual items at stockists, or via the site. Nice...
However, one grouse is that probably due to its precise measurements and the calculation time, the effects took quite long to download on the face at times, especially when you have just adjusted the coordinates for the hair, but I’m not complaining. It’s pretty fun… and who said you needed to stop at makeovers for yourself?
In the true spirit of this blog for our daughter, here is a disturbing look at how grown-up Rosabelle can be (that’s her passport photo taken at 3 months old, by the way) – haha, doesn’t she look so fei chit-chit?!
(Disclaimer: Both Wayne and I find it highly unnatural for our girl to be this made-up, so don’t start thinking I am going to paint her with wayang colors from now…she’s still cutest au naturel, heh!)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Big hand hold small hand

Our girl can now walk with just holding on to one of our hands. Wayne tried supporting her in this way downstairs this morning, and she seems to enjoy the freedom, and can now stride pretty quickly (and big steps at that). However, she is still very cautious about letting go of her hands or standing by herself for too long, wanting to lurch towards us/objects of support whenever possible, like the relief on her face as she toddles towards her tricycle in this below video taken just now.

She can even hold onto her walker and attempt to ‘jump’ – I saw her actually jump slightly and started teaching her to ‘jump, jump, jump’ as I pounced and bounced around her, making her chuckle and repeat after me, saying ‘gah, gah, gah’ as she bent her knees repeatedly to attempt her jumps.


She now also knows how to imitate the ways a bird flies, using her hands to wave and make a flapping movement whilst going ‘siewp, siewp, siewp’ (flapping sounds). She has a set of red/black/white picture cards that has a pair of birds on one of it, and will always say ‘鸟鸟’as she looks for the bird. She can similarly remember where the goldfish in the storybook is (making puckering sounds to mimick a fish), and even look for the ABC book with a picture of the goldfish, making the correct association that it’s the same object.


All these new tricks up her sleeve have been making her drink a lot of water in the cold, dry weather (and be very appreciative of it) – we make it a habit to leave her water bottle in full view of her at all times (e.g. placing it on the sofa when she’s in the living room), so that she can point at it and grab it to drink any time. She very cheekily has learnt to go ‘aaaahhhh…’every time after a good mouthful of water, haha!


Last night, she also mastered calling ‘爷爷’, and has been making Wayne carry her up to see the various family photos on the upper shelf of the TV console. Whenever she sees the family photos, she will want to hold them up close and point at the different people whilst mumbling, and of course learning from us who the respective folks are.


She has learnt to be very loving and can now kiss us on cue, puckering her sweet lips up to plant a peck on our cheeks. When she wanted to put the toy lamb into her walker, she even gave it a kiss before putting it down. She also gave alot of wet kisses to a photo of Wayne's grandmother, haha! The old lady will be so elated if she knows how warm her great-grandaughter is!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Coming full circle

Sis, remember when we were still kids ourselves?
When our dressing and hairstyles were at the mercy of Mum?
And how I cut my Blueberry Shortcake hair, thinking it'd grow back? (Luckily you kept your Strawberry Shortcake out of my sight!).
And how we always had laughs at the expese of other kids on the schoolbus?
And now, we have our own children to go through such memorable childhood with again...(For you, it's going to be three times over!).
May you enjoy your special day today!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

My 'schoolgirl' life

The year was 2001, when I was ‘still in my 20s’, and before I had come to Beijing. I went to an F4 concert, courtesy of my then ex- whose company sponsored their concert.
Then, they had just started out as singers (I'm sure there are many out there who will dispute these pretty boys as 'singers' or 'actors')and I was clueless as to who they were, but decided to go along just for the concert experience. Only when I was there did I realize how hot they were, with many young girls going gaga and screaming over them. And there I was, harassing the poor teenage girl who had the bad luck to be seated next to me, and ask ‘Erm… what’s the name of this guy on stage? The one next to him?’. She could only stare at me in disbelief/disgust and politely, and patiently, name them one by one. And then I was hooked.

I bought their music CD and listened to it on end, and then I watched the series,
Meteor Garden, on TV.
I harboured schoolgirl fantasies of having a ‘baddie’ boyfriend like Dao Mingsi (third guy from left in above), or getting to know someone shy like Zai Zai. And my dream was further fleshed out when I found a fellow fan in Vanessa, as we watched some episodes in her house before she left for Beijing. We even wanted to plan a shopping trip to Taipei to see if we could go 追星 and bump into F4, and visit the places the TV series was shot (and of course, visit our dear ex-colleague, Belinda, heh!).

Well, as it develops, we then came to Beijing (kaput the Taipei trip dream), and I can remember Wayne always grimacing in chagrin whenever Vanessa and I sang the theme song 流星雨, or Harlem Yu’s情非得已, or Dai Peini’s你要的爱, as Vanessa’s and my eyes glossed over when we imagined ourselves singing with/to Dao Mingsi…

But alas, we grew up (and out) of this phase, and now we both have daughters of our own who might one day grow up chasing dreams of their own Dao Mingsi’s. But the other day, in Singapore, on the way to the China embassy to get Rosabelle’s visa in place, I was in a cab and heard 流星雨 playing on the radio. I was seated alone in the cab and felt a sudden, strong gush of emotions – my nose and eyes got slightly watery, and I messaged Vanessa something like 'In Singapore on a cab to the embassy and heard 流星雨 playing on the radio – missing you all lots.'

Today, I felt the same way – Wayne and I had a good date night enjoying our meal at Alameda (had my first alcohol – red wine – in a long while, but it was a bad recommendation of Argentinian wine by the wait staff), and then snacks at Let’s Burger. I have not been plying myself with alcohol in a looong while since I’m still nursing, but figured that a little glass won’t hurt (and as long as I don’t feed Rosabelle within the hour).

On the way home, I heard the song Can’t take my eyes off you on the radio and told Wayne 'This is Vanessa’s and my favourite song', yet another karaoke and dance floor favourite that will definitely get us jiving. It was quite late already, so I did not message Vanessa, but it again caused a lump in my throat as I sang along. Well, late by today’s standards. At 11-nish in the past, we would have been planning to go to/meet at some night spot for another round of drinks together…

Sigh, those were really the days… But I’m not complaining, much. It’s all worth it when we come home to our lovely daughter, heh!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A great source of entertainment

Rosabelle likes to open/close her hands when I sing 'Twinkle, twinkle little star', and will almost always say 'star' (or sometimes sounds like her favourite '八!') at the first sentence. At times, when I am nursing her before her bed-time, I will say 'Mummy's going to sing you a song', intending to lull her to sleep, but I only have to finish saying this sentence for her to put her hands up and start dancing and/or clapping, haha!

Like last night, she simply refused to go to sleep, and wanted to play on her own bed. It was already past 11, and Wayne wanted to pick her up to rock her to sleep (her usual routine of looking at the Rabbit God in the kitchen, and the photos on the fridge), but she would cry once he picked her up. So we had no choice but to allow her to indulge herself on her bed whilst we switched off the lights and I pretended to sleep on the big bed. When I purposely turned my back towards her, she tried to attract my attention by laughing 'Heh, heh! Heh, heh!' and screaming. She even invented a three-step dance where she would turn from one corner of her bed and grab the side handrail before lifting her hands up to clap with an elated scream (she did this routine for a few times in succession for us to believe it was no random dance movement...).

Our little performer also likes the sound of her own voice, wanting to speak into the toy microphone and calling 'Papa' into it. Nowadays, she would do the same action of speaking into a microphone (bend her head down and speak closely into it) when she sees anything that resembles a mic - e.g. her toy phone, and even the cup used during bath times.

Speaking of bath time, I saw a red scratch on her left thigh during bath last night, and suspect it might have been caused by her scratching herself during diaper change time with the pen she likes so much to hold. In any case, it shouldn't have caused/be causing her much pain as I don't remember her crying about it over the past two days. However, when I questioned her about it by pointing out the mark on her thigh during bath time wound, she looked down and patted herself on the thigh before giving me a pitiful, crying face, as if she was in pain. Haha, what an actress!

She seems to understand the concept of wounds/hurt, as she will be very sheepish after we chide her for biting us (sometimes in over-enthusiasm) on the shoulder when we carry her. She will then pat us and hug/love us. The nanny came back from her two-days sick leave today (thankfully feeling better) and had a graze on her left hand. She told me Rosabelle saw it and patted the nanny's hand lightly, giving a crying face, as if to say 'So poor thing, Ayi!'.

If only she could articulate... for now, she will stick to picking up even more animal sounds - she can mimick the 'cuckoo koo' of a chicken when we prompt her to, haha! Though I'm not so sure it's 'haha' time for my sis - both Simon and Marianne have come down with chicken pox, with Simon getting it first (90+ spots on his body), and Marianne having a milder version (10+ small spots only) - at least they will be enjoying the same treatment at the same time, heh!

Yesterday, we brought Rosabelle to Element Fresh at The Village for lunch - she's making funny faces and giving her 'most beautiful smile' here whilst awaiting the food. (On a week day, our orders still took very long to arrive, and given we had ordered a set meal, they did not think to at least serve us the soup first before the main course, right until I had to remind them to hurry up... duh...). She enjoyed the cheese marconi, and bits of fish, chicken, and mushroom from our dishes.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sniffleupagus

I've been wanting to snap this set of photos of Rosabelle donning a pair of teddy bear tights for her meal times (since it's cold and she cannot just wear a thin pair of pants).
It's an old pair given by another Mummy in the yard, but it's good enough for us to keep her nice and warm.

However, she started having a slight runny nose since Saturday. The nanny actually told me she (the nanny herself) started feeling unwell with a bad throat and runny nose since Thursday, and after she blew her nose, I warned her that she had to wash her hands very properly (she only like rinsed her hands/soaped in 5 seconds!), and to maintain very strict hygiene when preparing Rosabelle's food and handling her items. When I caught the nanny putting her forehead against Rosabelle's (in affection over meal time), I had to remind her to hold back and ensure that she does not go too near Rosabelle in this manner over this period whilst she is unwell. She also does not really 'get it' and shared the same fruit fork as us, and continues to use the same cup/teaspoon as us for her morning cereal, yikes!

But alas, as with all colds, the germs spread very easily and even before somebody can come down with symptoms, so it's not surprising that poor Rosabelle probably caught it, given the close proximity to the nanny. The nanny offered to take leave on Friday but I told her so long as she maintains a high level of hygiene, it should be fine.

The nanny came back yesterday from her usual day-off on Saturday, and seemed to be better, but this morning, she told me when she was carrying Rosabelle last night, she felt weak and almost fell down, aiyo! So we've decided to give her two days off (no pay, of course), and Wayne and I will fly solo for the next two days whilst the nanny rests well. Hopefully she will recuperate properly, and it's just as well so that she won't further spread the germs, heh!

As for Rosabelle, her runny nose seems to have cleared up slightly today, and I did not give her any medicines since it does not seem to be getting serious. Fingers crossed it's just her little body's way of fighting off infections and building her own immunity!

Hair-raising anecdotes

These few days have been friggin' cold in Beijing, with very strong winds - like today, temperatures range between 2 degrees celsius and minus 8! As you may expect, we could not bring poor Rosabelle out for her walks (don't want her to become a meat popsicle!), but she seems fairly happy at home. The last outside walk we had was on Friday evening (though we went out for lunch on Saturday, but we were had shelter all the way from carpark to restaurant and back), where we survived only 20 minutes outside at 4:30pm in the afternoon before I had to make my way back as it was too cold. Here she is with an out-of-bed hair that looks spiky and very boyish-like, heh!
The hairdo lasted for the night even though she was donning a beanie when outside. I put on gloves for her but she still ended up with cold hands when we came back, brrrr.....
For the past few days, she seems fairly pleased to be staying at home, keeping herself busy by practising her walks with the walker and tricycle, her treasure trove of books, and many toys and music CDs. Thank goodness as we know of kids who will wail and become restless if they do not go outside to play.

She will go towards her tricycle and pat on the seat, but cry when we put her in it. Only after a few times did we realize that she wanted us to put a plush toy on it. These days, she will indicate she wants either a lion, a lamb, or a koala bear to sit in the tricycle (on the seat or in the wagon behind) and then push it happily. At times, she will stop to check if the toy has fallen out of position, then pat/babble at it, as I had told her before 'you must tell the lamb to sit well, the lamb cannot fall out of the tricycle, it's very dangerous'. She even pretended to cry/be sad when the lamb was slipping out of its seat.
She seems to know the different expressions/moods now, clapping her hands and dancing on cue when I say 'happy', and then pretending to cry when I show her pictures of crying babies, or tell her something sad from the books.
This is her with her favourite phone call pose, which now also counts as peekaboo, as she saw pictures of kids doing peekaboo with their hands rested on their cheeks.
Just now, she again woke up with funny hair, with the back looking all matted and wiry.
But she still looks mighty pleased with her bad hair day. Or it's one of the times when she's going on with her favourite '八' (8). The nanny has been teaching her to count with her fingers, and over her meal times, she will at times point at her own fingers, and is very cheeky - whenever we start counting '一、二、三', she will call out a resounding '八!'. Surprisingly, when I counted '1, 2, 3' in English, she also went '八!' as she knows I am counting. Well, she also says '八!' when she's indicating 'up' with both hands these days.
Though she's just only over a year old, I sometimes think her innocent mind ticks faster than mine. The other day, I asked her to slowly remove each jigsaw piece and put them into an empty box, wanting to train her to place things into containers. After putting only one of the pieces in, she took up the whole jigsaw board and threw it into the box, as if saying 'Erm...isn't this faster than putting them in one by one?' -__-

Another time when I got outwitted by my daughter was when I was trying to teach her to identify/sort colours, putting the red and blue blocks into respective colored cups. I then gave her a red block and asked her 'Which cup should this red block go into?' She looked at the red cup, then at the blue cup (which were both full of blocks), and then saw an empty green cup next to these two cups and promptly plonked the red block into the green cup before crawling away. She was indicating to me this time that 'The two cups are too full, isn't it easier to put the block into the empty cup, Mummy?' -__-"
Another hilarious incident involves that of her favourite books - we got a free set of pop-up books after I ordered powdered milk (for myself), and one of them includes a pop-up bear with movable eyes. Wayne was reading this to her when she poked her finger into the eyes and accidentally caught it in the sharp end, hurting herself. She only let out a slight whimper, but after that turned to the page again and made sad/crying noises to tell Wayne about the bear hurting her. Nowadays, whenever she sees the set of books or the bear, she will make very sad/crying whimpering noises, as if complaining to us about the bear that hurt her....hehe!