Monday, August 23, 2010

Joy in the City

Last Saturday, I had actually intended to bring our girl to Tiananmen Square, since she was learning to sing the 我爱北京天安门song some time back, to let her see for herself what 天安门she’s actually loving, and had prepared summer clothing ready for her the night before (i.e. singlet, light skirt, hat). As luck would have it, it rained the night before. Nope. It poured. For almost the whole Saturday (save for slight drizzles at times…). In August. In Beijing. Sheesh…

But was it going to dampen our moods? No sirree… I’m a PR person, mind you – so Plan B swung into action and we went to the new Joy City for some indoor action. There were 8 floors of this massive shopping complex with a myriad of shops/brands, and I liked the many household furnishings/deco stores with cute knick-knacks (even bought a cute metal spoon for Rosabelle as she declared '玥玥勺子漂亮' as she fed herself watermelon juice that evening with the spoon).

However, I was mindful that our family day did not turn into a shopping trip for me (I only bought myself a scrunchy – that’s how resolute I was, so there!). Since at this age, she dawdles a lot so everything is/was new to her, I had to gently nudge her to move it along by asking her to pretend to fly like an aeroplane/bird/butterfly as she ran from one place to another (she even wanted to crawl under the benches until she hit her head and decided this was not a playground tunnel…), as she spotted something along the way that caught her eye…
This shop Teenie Weenie, with far-too-cutesy bear-bear clothes, always has a statue of a bear outside its shops, and Rosabelle saw the ‘大熊, 小熊', and ‘熊with dark blue bow tie’, and deemed the big bear’s ‘皮鞋漂亮'as she posed for shots with it.
I was looking at the directory to check out if there were kid-related shops, but when we hit the third level, it came out of nowhere – a kid’s playground (which you had to pay RMB20 for and as you can imagine, was flooded with kids… and adults), and some kiddy rides/arcade. Our girl was clamouring to '要坐这个', pointing at each and everything, and being the cheapo we were (refusing to pay RMB5 for only about a minute of ride), saw a girl on a carousel – and there were two empty horses as well. Since some other parent was nice enough to pay for the ride, we dumped her on an empty horse (another parent did the same later…) and had her taken for a free ride, heh!
She kept wanting to sit the helicopter, so we put her in it, and of course did not put in any money. She was quite happy to just press the buttons – thank goodness she’s not at the age/stage to insist that we throw money tokens in now…
Guess it’s a transportation theme at this place as they had trains, buses (that’s her being the underaged bus driver below and me looking very tanned in spite of me wearing a black top, gosh…), cars… but all instructions/displays were in Japanese. Maybe that’s why the rides are so expensive…
We then wandered out of kiddy land and came across an older boy posing for photos in front of some displays for his father. Our girl had to go sit next to him and also start preening her stuff, sheesh!
Gosh, I really have NO idea where she picked up her camwhoring ways from… *pretends to roll eyes* (self-taken shots as we waited for Papa to visit a store)…
We also saw some cute mushroom-like sculptures that she liked being in the midst of:
That’s her enjoying the view (and fresh air!) from way up there!
After that, we headed for lunch and looked around for somewhere to rest as well – there are many restaurants at this place, but Wayne was a tad disappointed when I pointed out that Rosabelle would not have any proper food to eat at Burger King (our favourite!), heh! And so we ended up at泰和草本 where she had mini wontans, chicken fillet, corn/carrot, peanuts and an egg tart.

As we walked back to the carpark, we again came across the stage area where they were having some travel magazine event. The stage was free though, and both times, our girl went up and pretended to sleep on it, jumped/sang/danced on it, and climbed up and down, taking it as her own playground.
We stopped at BreadTalk to buy some breakfast, and Wayne offered Rosabelle a sip of his yogurt, not counting on her finishing more than half a cup (and even spilling some on the chair as she tipped it over whilst carrying it herself).
And that marked a rather uneventful, but still fun morning for us (she KO-ed for three hours that afternoon). Later that evening, with rains still coming down, we went to一坐一忘, a Yunnan restaurant, for dinner with Nainai.

Some random updates of late…
She managed to jump about 5cm off the ground on Saturday night! She always does her小白兔hopping with her knees bent, and seemed resolute enough to want to jump that night, so Wayne and I jumped around and she was happy as a lark when she managed a jump of her own, without losing her balance or falling.

Some other things that make me proud of (or just simply laugh at) her are when she cajoles me when I’m angry, going, ‘Mummy….mummy…’ as she looks pitifully at me, then when I break into a smile, she will say ‘妈妈不生气了'. The other day, before she slept, as she goes into her usual soliloquy (so-named as Wayne and I will ignore her in an attempt to let her sleep and not be entertained further by our responses), she said, ‘小姑娘几岁了?两岁!', and I burst out laughing at her own Q&A session. She also called out to Nainai very loudly in the next room, but of course Nainai also ignored her. After a few times, she remarked, ‘Nainai so naughty’, since we always teach her to acknowledge with an ‘Aye!’ whenever we call out to her.

Also, Baobao’s (the older playmate in the yard) mother was telling me that her own daughter had not been drinking formula for a month already, making her very worried. That day, in front of Rosabelle, she purposely remarked that ‘玥玥妹妹每一晚都喝奶' and true enough, Baobao drank her milk that night. Her mum said that her daughter knows whenever she uses our girl as an example, it’s for something good, so she will aspire to be like Rosabelle. That made me mighty proud indeed, though I pity Baobao at times when her own mother puts her down with her ‘你看玥玥妹妹都不害怕,你怎么不能象她一样好奇呢?' whilst she was clinging to her mother as she was terrified of a remote-controlled army truck on the ground (as our girl was chasing after it and picking it up to touch the soldiers inside). I tell my girl off (like she now knows to go stand in a corner or sit on a bench by herself on her own accord whenever she pushes/beats somebody), but I would never tell her, especially in front of her, to be 'so and so because so and so is better in so and so way’. It’s very demoralizing for the poor kid.

She can say 幼儿园 now, using it correctly to say that her favourite ‘麦兜上幼儿园了'. Latest song picked up of late is 我的朋友在哪里, as she suddenly sang in the bath the other day, listening to the CD being played. We’ve never taught her this song, so guess she picked it up herself, going ‘在天涯,在海角,我的朋友在这里'. Speaking of teaching, I have to bite my teeth at times when I hear Nainai teaching her the wrong lyrics, and sometimes nicely correct her by jumping in at the next refrain with the correct lyrics, for songs likes 小蘑菇 (Rosabelle will sing ‘小雨小雨下不来’ instead of ‘小雨小雨下得欢)', 小袋鼠 (she will go ‘他说一个、两个、三个…' instead of ‘他说一、二、三、四、五'), (ooooh… I don’t wish for her to undo all the efforts I’ve put in to teach, no matter how well-meaning she is…)

However, there is some regression on some fronts, in the potty training area, as she had some pee accidents for about three nights in a row (maybe it’s because we now make it a point to fill her bottle and let her drink from the straw as she plays – all to ensure she drinks enough water to poo everyday). Her diapers are also not dry at night on some days, but guess we’re slowly getting there as our girl will be ready when she’s ready!

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