Zoom Park Asia – Trampoline Park

It seems trampoline parks are the in-thing right now. Not too long ago, Amped opened their 2nd outlet in Jurong, and now Zoom Park Asia has opened Singapore’s largest trampoline park, also in Jurong. The West is set to be transformed!

Foam Pit

Zoom has many different arenas for the kids to play in, besides basic jumping. The foam pit even has a rock wall at the end.

Main Court

However, the kids were wondering why there are pyramids at the main court yet they are not allowed to climb them, like at the other trampoline parks. It seems to be for the staff to watch that everyone is playing safely, which is great. Kate loved playing with the plastic balls at the Dodgeball arena.

Dodgeball

Pretty cool to jump towards the basketball hoop and dunk the ball in whilst being high up in the air!

The kids spent the longest time at the Extreme Dodgeball arena. They split up into 2 teams and Kate had fun running from side to side, not quite knowing how the game went.

Extreme Dodgeball

There’s a mini snack/drink counter with some tidbits and muffins on sale.

It is mandatory to purchase these bright orange Zoom socks for $2 each, which has rubber padding on the base.

Kate wearing her zoom socks

Their verdict?

Pros of Zoom:

  • Great variety of arenas, something for everyone
  • Toddler friendly spaces, and balls to add more fun
  • Slots can be purchased in blocks of 30 minutes
  • The kids felt that the trampolines here are not as springy as those in Amped, so this would be a plus for the younger kids who are just starting out and are a little fearful
  • Kate jumped and played around for a full hour and didn’t even take a break to ask for snacks. She came out all sweaty and happy!

Pros of Amped:

  • Very springy trampolines make it easier for the older kids to do somersaults and other fancy moves
  • Wide open spaces so they can create their own fun and games
  • They love climbing up the pyramids
  • The Jurong outlet is air-conditioned which makes it more comfortable

Sane tip: Trampoline parks are ‘mum’s best friends’. The kids are happily entertained for an hour and when they get home, they are knocked out at bedtime. Kids below 3 need an adult supervising them at all times. Kids above 3 need an adult on the premise.

Save tip: Weekday rates start from $7.50 for 30 minutes.

Zoom Park Asia
200 Pandan Gardens
Singapore 609336

~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

Parkland Green at East Coast Park

We were invited to the launch of the brand new family-friendly spot in East Coast Park known as Parkland Green. National Parks’ latest efforts to rejuvenate the green spaces in our City in a Garden has certainly hit the mark with families. It comprises of 8 dining establishments, 2 sports shops and a laser tag arena. A large open lawn between the sea and the restaurants allow for outdoor activities like kite-flying, ball games and picnics to be enjoyed. Here is a run-down of some of the dining and retail shops we visited.

1. Atmosphere Bistro

We started off our food trail at Atmosphere Bistro, a seaside dining concept catering to families in the day and transforming into a sports bar at night. For the month of December, they offer Kids Pizza making workshops every Tuesday from 5.30pm to 7pm. Tel: 64409705

BBQ Pork Ribs, Mini Burgers, Flaming Pizza

The kids were served Iced Chocolate and were amused by the very cute latte art.

3D latte art

Their chocolate lava cake was very yummy, and the kids attacked it with relish, not knowing we were in for a whole afternoon of other delectable delights.

2. SandBank

Next on our trail was SandBank, and beat this, they have a children’s pool and a 15m plunge pool with jacuzzi on their premise! What a fabulous idea. The adults can enjoy a leisurely time eating while the kids play contentedly in the pool. We will definitely be back to check out the pool once it is ready. For the rest of the school holidays, they are offering 10% off main courses (valid till 31 Dec 2014). Tel: 62477988
Charcoal grilled cola marinated chicken wings

3. Patro’s Sports Bar & Restaurant

We moved along to Patro’s Sports Bar & Restaurant, which serves Mexican & North Indian cuisine. I found the standard of the food to be really good, but was a little doubtful that my kids would like it. Turns out they said it was delicious! From now until 21 December 2014, kids enjoy one-for-one main course from the kids’ menu.

Chicken Fajitas

4. Bakery Bar ST. MARC

I was quite stuffed by now, but there were still a few more stops to go. Next up was Bakery & Bar St. Marc, and here at their Parkland Green outlet, they serve All-day dining with Japanese fusion cuisine. The kids managed to run around between the stops and had space in their tummies to chomp down these chocolate croissants. I tried a bite, and must say that they do taste quite good! I will be back next time for a proper tea and have a whole Chococro to myself.

Chococro

The lovely wait staff came around with plates of their signature Spaghetti Carbonara, but we had to pass on it. I saw some of the other kids clean up their plate, so it must have been good. Currently, they are having discounts on any 2 waffle cone desserts on weekdays from 11am to 5pm, valid till 29 December 2014. (Closed on Mondays. Tel: 63421786)

I can just imagine this place on the weekends, with kids happily playing in the open green fields while the parents relax at the cafes with good food and drinks. My idea of a perfect day. Now I wish I lived back in the East.

Little Fuji
5. Pick me up Cafe

Next, we were ushered to Pick me up Cafe, an artisan cafe offering healthy home-made yogurt gelato and an all-day breakfast menu. We were served their signature Smoked Salmon on Miso Waffles and The Manuka Waffles (Chef Waffles).
So many flavours to choose from
#1 is into healthy eating and loved their cold pressed juices which they squeeze on the spot. There is a cosy little corner at the entrance for the little ones to hang out at. Tel: 63481909
Pick me up Cafe

6. Starbucks

This needs no introduction, and was a favourite with the older kids. I tried to keep my children away from caffeine for as long as I could but once they entered the P6/Sec1 age, the ‘cool’ thing to drink seems to be Starbucks coffee. Naturally they were delighted when the friendly staff came out with trays of drinks.

Toffee Nut Latte, Christmas Tree Danish

They have both indoor and outdoor seating, and I would say this is their best outlet to chill at, being right by the seaside.

7. Killiney Kopitiam / Cheers

Last on our food trail was Killiney Kopitiam, which boasts an interesting concept. This is the first time Cheers is collaborating with Killiney Kopitiam to offer affordable food coupled with a convenience store to serve their customers better. Expect to find the usual popular local dishes here such as Mee Siam, Laksa, Mee Rebus and Curry Chicken. The cafe opens until 10pm, while Cheers is open 24 hours on weekends. From now till 1 Jan 2015, they are offering discounts on their toast sets.
Killiney Kopitiam and Cheers

And finally, we were done with the food stops and moved on to what the kids had been waiting for.

8. Tag Team

This is Singapore’s largest indoor laser tag arena, and the first and only multi-arena and multi-weapon laser tag facility. Just the thing to help us digest all that food.

I normally don’t join them in such physical activities (yes, yes, I have to stop being lazy) but it looked pretty harmless and 1 arena lasts for 15 minutes. That, I can manage. We broke up into 2 teams (I joined the other team as they were short of 1 player) and my kids had a field day shooting the mummies down. Yup, our team lost. Well, the 3 year old gave up her gun halfway as it was too heavy for her, and the 2 other mummies with toddlers in tow were no match for my very energetic kids swarming around us. Ok, I’m starting to sound like a spoilsport.

It was surprisingly good fun and I was tired after the short 15 minutes of running around in wedges (Btw, they are not particular about footwear. You can even go barefoot if you wish). The kids went on to the next arena (which was air-conditioned) while I waited outside. Kids from as young as 4 are allowed to play, but they would have to be motivated enough to carry the slightly heavy gun for 15 minutes. If your kid can carry a thick dictionary and run around the house, I’m sure he’ll do fine. All my kids enjoyed themselves thoroughly, even the older girls. For the month of December, they are offering family packages with a discount on 5 ‘mission’ tickets.

To avoid disappointment in case they are closed for private events, do call them beforehand. Tel: 63482696

Practising his aim

9. Hvper Sport

This huge sports shop specialises in skating products, and they carry a wide array of scooters, skateboards and inline skates. They also have lots of beach toys, and other sporting accessories. With our $50 voucher, #3 got a good quality water bottle, a hammock and a ball for Kate. 

Hvper Sport
10. Pro Cycle

They stock a mind-boggling array of bicycles, balance bikes, scooters and safety gear, for children and adults. They carry the local brand Valo with bikes starting from $115, as well as the French brand Cronus with bikes starting from $185. What sets them apart is that they encourage their customers to try out their products before buying. All the bloggers’ kids were happily riding round and round their shop!

They also provide bicycle repair services (even for bikes not bought from them) and they have an outdoor bicycle tyre pumping facility which is available 24/7. For the month of December, they are offering 20% off all bicycles storewide. I spotted this really cool looking pink bicycle going at $105. Pretty reasonable considering the bicycles we bought from the HDB shops cost us about $90 each. Would have bought this if Kate was older!
Pro Cycle

To be honest, the last time we went to East Coast Park for a day out with the kids was probably 4 or 5 years ago. I don’t like crowds and prefer to take them cycling at less populated parks. With the new Parkland Green amenities facing the sea and the great food options, we will definitely be back very soon!

Parkland Green
920 East Coast Parkway
Singapore 449875


Disclaimer: We were sponsored this Food and Fun trail by NParks and the participating establishments. All opinions are my own.

~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

Labrador Park: I love it!

We’ve been doing this parenting thing for so long that it’s getting tiring to plan activities and take them out. I guess there’s a reason kids grow up and need less physical parental input. But with 6, it doesn’t seem to end! The hubs has long copped out and most times it’s just me taking them for the outdoor stuff while he joins us for meals.

I know we have to at least put a bit of physical activity back into our lives, especially now that we have Kate. I’ve been bugging him about it so off we went to Labrador Park. It’s situated near the PSA building where Alexandra Road meets Tanjong Pagar road and Pasir Panjang road.

Wish we were on that boat

I’m not particularly fond of taking them to either West Coast or East Coast Park because of the crowds. This place is perfect. Scenic views, not too crowded even on weekends, and besides, where else would you get to ogle at handsome boats while cycling?

Perfect to watch the sun set

We rode all the way to Keppel Marina and ended up at this place which is a perfect picnic spot. Next time we can perhaps pack a sandwich and a drink each in a backpack and have a simple picnic. The kids would be more than happy to kick a ball around.

Of course she’s smiling… she’s not the one doing the cycling


The next time, we can check out the war relics and secret tunnels.

Directions:

Labrador Villa Road, off Pasir Panjang road

MRT: Labrador Park station

West Coast Park

With the older kids, we used to frequent West Coast Park a lot. There’s so much to do there and they could easily play for hours. There are a lot of play structures to keep the little ones occupied and there’s sand everywhere so we’ll bring our sand toys along. They would also bring their bicycles, roller blades or skate scooters. Once, we tried to fly a kite as there is a huge field with lots of people flying beautiful kites. However, we failed. Don’t ask me why. It wasn’t that there was no wind, because other kites were flying gaily high in the sky. When I mentioned it to a friend, he tried to explain to me how you have to gauge the direction of the wind and go along with it (or was it against it) so that the wind will gradually push the kite from below. And you have to tug at it in a certain way so that it will climb higher and higher. Gosh. Sounds so complicated. Oh well. That was probably our first and last time flying a kite.

Pirate ship

I was surprised to see that it was not as crowded as before. Later I realised why. The main climbing play structure with the high slides was closed for renovation. So although the older kids were disappointed, I much preferred it!

“I think you better stop, uncle”

There’s still enough to keep the younger ones happy for a good few hours. This ‘crazy’ bus was very popular with the kids as it is attached to some springs below. This dad was really involved, and he kept acceding to his boys request to shake the bus. And shake he did! Kate stood there for a long time, spell-bound, as the kids on the bus were being shaken vigorously and were squealing in delight.

Made a new friend

The older girls had to coordinate to get Kate across the net safely. She is indeed fortunate to have siblings who dote on her.

Requires good balancing skills

They were having so much fun that I decided to try hanging too. Could only manage a couple of seconds. Ahem… better get started on that exercise program I’ve been meaning to for years.

3 little monkeys swinging in the park

As usual, Kate wants in on everything.

One little monkey…

Sane tip: In my opinion, the best time for the little ones to go is now. Once the main play structure is ready, be prepared for a throng of older children. We love to pack food along and have a nice relaxing picnic. There’s a MacDonald’s on the premise as well. We’ll going to try camping here the next school holidays!

Save tip: It’s free!
~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

KidsSTOP @ Singapore Science Centre

The latest attraction for kids from 18 months – 8 years is KidsStop at the Science Centre. They have an impressive gamut of activities which promotes experiential learning with a lot of fun!

I waited for the initial excitement to die down before taking the kids so that it wouldn’t be so packed. We went after school on a Friday and it was perfect as the place was not crowded at all. Kate and #5 had a whale of a time there as there is just so much to explore.

Kate patiently waiting her turn to fly the plane

Uh-oh. The two pilots ran off, along with the outfits. Oh well, we can make-believe just as well without the uniforms.

“You are my co-pilot. Must listen to my instructions ok?” “OK, gor gor!”
#5 finds our anatomy very amusing
Blasting off into space together. So long!
Everyone wants to touch the chick

We learnt how to tell the gender of the chicks. The females have a brown marking while the males are yellowish white in colour.

“Worm!” (She doesn’t know about millipedes yet)

#5 gave me a run down on hermit crabs – on how they ‘borrow’ shells, and about mud skippers. I didn’t know he knew so much about science!

Karoke Queen wannabe 
First you build the Lego
Then you use it for Stop Motion Animation
Be prepared for them being sandy!
After more than 2 hours of playing, Kate was ready to call it a day.
“Playing is such back-breaking work!”
Sane tip: Don’t forget to bring socks as some of the areas require socks to enter. They do very thorough health checks on the kids at the entrance so getting in takes a little while. You can purchase tickets either from the main Science Centre entrance or at KidsSTOP itself.

Save tip: I absolutely love this hands-on science museum! Definitely getting the membership the next time round. It’s $30 for a year and you need to bring along a passport photo and a copy of the child’s birthcert. Benefits of membership: 1 free admission for the child and accompanying adult. Subsequently, 30% discount off entry fees. Full benefits here.

KidsSTOP @ Singapore Science Centre
21 Jurong Town Hall
Singapore 609433

~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

Food for Thought @ Singapore Botanic Gardens

It was a rare opportunity that I had my oldest and youngest home with me on a school morning. #1 had a day off from school as she wasn’t taking certain subjects for her ‘O’ levels prelims. Instead of my daily jaunt with Kate at the playgrounds, I decided to take them for a leisurely breakfast. We needed a cafe that was open early and where Kate could roam for a bit after breakfast. Food for Thought nestled in our beautiful Botanic Gardens was a perfect choice.

Ample seating

This eco-conscious cafe is very kid-friendly and has several configurations of seatings to accommodate groups of different sizes. It is very spacious (no problems with strollers), and has a playground right outside.

Grilled Ham & Cheese $9

We ordered the Ham & cheese and the mixed berries pancakes. All their pancakes are served with fresh cream and gula melaka syrup. Kate loved the pancakes and helped me finish half of it!

Mixed Berries pancakes $11

After she had her fill, she went off to play by herself in the little playground outside. It’s great that the outdoor area is separated by glass walls so we could keep an eye on her while we finished up our breakfast. Even though the playground is outdoors, it is pretty much shaded by trees so it wasn’t that hot.

Deep in thought

This signage cracked the both of us up! Check out rule #2. Hmm, are adults so deprived of fun? Perhaps they also need to run around and de-stress.

Small but fun playground

Right above Food for Thought, there is a little koi pond and Kate was mesmerised by the fishes. We spent some time just hanging around enjoying the lush greenery. What a perfect morning. Lovely. Just lovely.

Sane tip: Bring some wheelies along and let the kids loose in the beautiful gardens. Will do that when I take the whole bunch of them here the next time! Parking is right outside Food for Thought.

Save tip: Early bird special (8-10am) – Chicken laksa or Mee rebus @ $5, add coffee/tea for an extra $1

Food for Thought
Botanic Gardens
1 Cluny Road (Tanglin Gate)
#B1-00
Singapore 259569
Tel: 64791080

Opening hours:
Daily: 8am – 9pm

~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

Hello Kitty Town – Johor

We took the 4 younger kids across the causeway to Nusajaya (Johor) to spend an afternoon at The Little Red Cube and they had so much fun. It took us about half an hour to get there by car as it was smooth crossing the causeway at 1pm on a weekday. This is the first Sanrio Hello Kitty Town outside of Japan, and the kids were excited to take Kate there as they had enjoyed the Hello Kitty Land in Tokyo a few years back. I was surprised that even #3 who is already 12 enjoyed herself. We spent 4 hours there until closing time and they weren’t done playing.

Lots of Hello Kitty merchandise on sale

FIRST FLOOR:

The 1st floor houses Hello Kitty town where there is a mix of activities such as simple cookie decoration, dressing up for a photo, a live show, a little playground, and Black Wonder – an interactive dim arena where they have to solve a mystery.
Spinning cup

You need this activity card as some of the activities can only be carried out once and they will give you a stamp.

Keep this with you

I think this was called jewellery making, but it’s more like just getting a free Hello Kitty necklace because there’s really nothing much to make. Thankfully we did not have to queue for this. A friend’s daughter queued for half an hour thinking she could create some jewellery, and was disappointed when it was simply putting the chain into the pendent loop.

Kate’s clasp broke by the time she got home
Kate ate her cookie plain while waiting for them to decorate theirs

Kate was mesmerised by the 15 minutes show as she has never watched a live show up close before. The music is rather loud so you might want to sit further back if your kids are young.

Song and dance routine


SECOND FLOOR

The 2nd floor houses a little arcade, a playground, Angelina Ballerina Dance Studio, Barney stage for a live show and more which the kids didn’t have time to explore. The older kids spent about 45 minutes at the arcade itself as they were thrilled that the games were all free!
Kate the referee

The arcade games are suited for kids as they are all of a mini version. #5 did a victory dance every time he managed to shoot a hoop and Kate would cheer him on.

“Go, gor gor, go!”

The 2 older ones were still not done at the mini arcade so Kate and #5 went next door and played in the playground. Even though it was not very big, the 2 of them had lots of fun racing up and tumbling down the little slope repeatedly.

As quick as her little feet can carry her

There was a couple fast asleep on the bean bags and everyone who walked past peeped in and sort of jumped back in surprised. While the kids were busy running around, I was sitting there being entertained by this reality ‘just for laughs gag’.

They must be exhausted running after their kids


THIRD FLOOR

They spent the longest at the 3rd floor which had lots of rides. The Malaysia school holiday had just ended last week so the place was quite empty. There were no queues and the kids went on the rides to their heart’s content.
“I’ll be your co-pilot, gor gor”

Bumping buffer’s steamies ride

Bertie the bus

Thomas the steam engine winds around a 2-story indoor playground. It was a really decent indoor playground and they played there until closing time.

Knapford station

Sodor indoor playground

Adjoining the indoor playground is a proper lounge. Ah, I should have known. Next time I’ll bring my reading material and relax here while the kids take care of Kate.

Parent’s lounge

We will definitely be back as we don’t have to drive all the way up to KL where we take the kids every year to have similar fun at Berjaya Time Square. That one is great if you have a wide age range (like if we take all 6 kids), but if it’s just those below 12, this is more than sufficient to entertain them. It is also newer and cleaner, and the kids would love the different characters like Hello Kitty, Barney and Thomas. I guess the kids could play for half a day because there were 4 of them. If you only have 1 or 2 kids, invite another family along and I’m sure the kids would have a swell time.

There are a couple of eateries outside of the amusement area such as Sushi King, Taiwanese snacks, and Starbucks. If any of the adults decide not to enter, the eateries extend to the back and is a nice place to wait as it overlooks the bay.

Eateries overlook this bay

Sane tip: Avoid the Malaysia school holidays as when it is crowded, you spend a great deal of time queuing up for a simple activity and it is quite frustrating. I heard that the Johor school week has recently been changed. The kids now attend school from Sundays to Thursdays. So it might be ok to go on a Sunday. However, if it is crowded, you could also go against the grain of the crowd and start on the 3rd or 2nd floor.

Another thing is to be prepared for a jam on the causeway. As the kids were famished, we decided to have dinner there before we headed home, and we were caught in a 2 hour jam home. I didn’t bring an extra milk feed for Kate as I didn’t expect the kids to play for so many hours as feedback from many friends was that it was not that fun. Thankfully, she didn’t kick up a fuss when we told her to just close her eyes and sleep first and we would give her milk when we reached home.

Save tip: Definitely go for the 2 park pass. For another S$15 each, they get to play at the other 2 floors. Friends who only went to Hello Kitty Town itself said it was boring and not worth the visit. Bring your own snacks as the food there is very basic. Kids below 3 enter free.
Hello Kitty Town
Nusajaya Johor
The Little Red Cube
(10 minutes away from Legoland)

Operating Hours:
10am – 6pm daily

Entrance Fee:
Hello Kitty Town alone: RM75 (Adult/Child)
Hello Kitty Town + Little Big Club: RM110 (Adult/Child)
Kids under 3: FREE

~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~

Jurong East Swimming Complex

Jurong East Swimming Complex is probably the most comprehensive public pool in Singapore. They have a play structure for the little ones, a wave pool, a lazy river, big slides, a jacuzzi, and a competitive pool. 

Kate having fun jumping in and out of the water
She’s pampered by her siblings who would prop her up to touch everything she points to.
She loves sprays of water

Lazy river (in the foreground) and the wave pool (background). Every once in a while, there is a huge spray over the wave pool. Be prepared to get drenched!

For the older kids there are 3 water slides. 2 of the slides require the use of the float.

The older kids went off to try the slides while Kate played happily by herself.

“Ain’t it fun?”

We arrived at 4.30pm on a weekday during the school holidays and they ran out of floats to rent. It costs $2 for 2 hours of rental, plus you need to place a $3 deposit which will be refunded.

The only food available inside is Pastamania. What happened to the good ol’ days where they sold fish balls on sticks and fried bee hoon? I needed a cup of hot milo and it costs about $4! Will remember to bring a whole flask of it the next time.

The decor at the background is just a facade

I walked one big round to look for the entrance to Pastamania, and it is just a windowed counter at the far right end.

After about 2 hours, Kate had enough and she sat and had her snacks while waiting for the older ones to enjoy themselves without having to take care of her.

Contented with her fill of play
Sane tip: Do note that it’s closed on Monday, to avoid disappointment. The last school holiday, the kids were all prepped to go and alas, it was a Monday and the gates were closed. We ended up in Jurong West Swimming Complex instead. Be prepared for a huge crowd during the school holidays and weekends.

Save tip: It can’t get any cheaper than this for a ton of water fun! Pack your own picnic and you can easily spend half a day there.

Jurong East Swimming Complex
21 Jurong East Street 31
Singapore 609517


~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~