Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Summer Activities

Kids all over Manila are having their summer break right now and with school out, I just needed to come up with some activities at home to keep the kids entertained rather than have them sit in front of the television the whole day.

The weather has been incredibly hot since April so naturally, we just had to bring out the inflatable pool.  In as much as we’d like Nina to have as much swimming time in the pool, we needed to be careful that she didn’t catch a cold since her colds tend to progress to a cough and then at times to pneumonia.   Poor baby, she couldn’t swim as much as she wanted to.  Our strategy was that we allowed her kuya to get in the pool earlier than her and after say 10-15 minutes, then she could join him.  Then to avoid any jealousy, they had to get out simultaneously.  Of course, for Nina it was much harder to get her out and we’d often end up with a crying baby who would say “miming” in between sobs. 

Considering our fear of her catching a cold, we couldn’t let them go swimming everyday so one weekend, we decided to take them out to Tagaytay Highlands where I used to work.  I had fond memories of the Animal Farm in Highlands back then, especially of the orangutan named Chino since he was kinda cute and would often have photo ops with the children.  Of course, that was something like 10years ago so imagine my shock when I saw how huge Chino had grown!  Still the kids enjoyed themselves and that was what was important.  Aside from seeing the animals up close, they got to ride on a horse (both real and imaginary) and they got a kick out of that as well (tho not literaly).

We also included them in a free summer pre-school given to kids where I work.  The experience was nothing new to Kuya since he attended the program last summer and some of this year’s students were his classmates last school year.  Nina on the other hand, although it was her first time, did not have any adjustment problems and proved herself ready for school.

Of course, we still did the usual drawing, play doh, building blocks, coloring and puzzle activities, but I was running out of ideas - quickly!  

Then I remembered finger painting!  My friends had given me a recipe for homemade fingerpaint but with Yaya 1 on vacation and me trying to catch up on work and cooking, there was simply no time for me to make it.  So I got whatever was available in the bookstore.  Luckily, we had a big roll of paper in the house which served as their canvass as well as protection for our floors.  The end result?  Let’s just say that for Nina it became a combination of Finger Painting and Body art.  She had lots of fun tho.  So with just a few weeks left, I still want to think of other activities that they can do… any suggestions?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Dear Kuya

So you thought that Mommy’s blog would be all about Nina… well  think again!  I can’t let your let your 4th birthday go by without documenting it my usual mushy way so indulge me a little okay?

It’s  hard to believe how fast time flies and how quickly you are growing.  You used to be my baby but now you start to complain whenever I call you my baby.   Come to think of it, when it comes to Nina, you show us that you really are a big boy now.  We are so proud of how well you look out for your sister.  You’re doing a mighty fine job in being a Kuya.  Whenever I see how you attentive you are and how concerned you are for Nina’s welfare, I always have this great sense of pride blowing up in me.  Many times I’m tempted to point out what you do to other people and tell everyone else that you’re my son.  Thank you, for making us proud, for assuring us that you will always be there for your sister.  Just the other night, I saw you wake up in the middle of the night and place a blanket on your sleeping sister – now  else in the world can I find a 4 year old doing that?! 

We are also happy that you’re slowly learning to be independent by taking a bath without the help of yaya, or by brushing your teeth, drinking milk from a glass, and lately eating by yourself.   I also love the fact that you no longer have “accidents” in the evenings  (Tipid na kami ni Daddy sa pag-bili ng diaper).

This year, you showed Dad and Mom how active you can be but at the same time, you also showed us how obedient you can be at the same time.  I know I scold you a lot of times but it’s only because I want you to be safe especially since at this age, you still tend to cry whenever you get hurt or get into an accident.  You also did very well in school this year!  You made it to the top of your Nursery class and you didn’t give mom a hard time whenever study time came.  Congratulations, babe!  I’m amazed at how quickly you learn things (especially when you put your heart to it) although at times, I have to admit that I do get frustrated especially when you forget your lessons and would rather play than study. 

receiving his award for being top in his Nursery class

This year, you had a lot of favorites:  the Disney Cars characters (particularly Lightning McQueen – that’s you and Mater is Daddy’s character).  You’ve also been addicted to Angry birds (oh how you can play that game so well that you sometimes get more 3-stars than mom!).  You also like Thomas the Train, Kung Fu Panda (and you do a mean kungfu panda dance) but over everything else, you still love your Elephants!  And your favorite color this year is Red (actually it has been since you were small) but you love it now, more than ever to the point that your favorite bird in the Angry Birds game (on the ipod) is the red one.

When school opens this year, you’ll be going to a big school – Miriam.  It’s the same school of Ate Chawie and now, Kuya Migs will be going there as well together with Ate Abby.  It’ll be a big change for you but Dad and I decided to enroll you there so you would learn to be more independent and less clingy to mom.  I just know you’ll like it there.

So on this, your 4th year… dad and I just wish that you would continue being as loving and as sweet as you are right now.  Stay as obedient as you are but please try to cry less often, okay?  Remember that Daddy, Nina and I love you a lot and that we will always be here for you.  Happy birthday, honey!  We love you very very much.