Kate’s bedtime routine… or mine?

One of my hot buttons is that the kids go to bed on time.

They know that I get really angry if they sleep late during school nights.

Not enough sleep = poor concentration & immunity lowered = falling sick and spreading germs to the others = overtired & grumpy mummy.

Lately, the bedtime routine of the 2 youngest ones is starting to drive me crazy.

Kate’s babies

Kate & #5 sleep in the same room, and after showering and brushing their teeth, they get in bed by 7.30pm. Nice.

But then the real routine begins.

I read Kate her bedtime stories while #5 reads to himself.

There’s always the “one more, pleaseeee”, while trying to put on her cutest face. We have settled on 5 books, although she is using the 1 to 1 correspondence skill (or lack of) to try and wriggle a few more books into the 5.

Then it’s lights out.

I am constantly surprised how kids can think of so many things to do in semi-darkness.

“I want to sleep here, next to mummy.” Shuffle, shuffle. Silence for 3 seconds.

“I don’t want to sleep at the bad guy side.” (the side closest to the wall) More shuffling.

“I have no space!” Nudging, pushing, shoving.

Stop moving both of you, and go to sleep!

Silence for 10 seconds.

“I have a mosquito bite on my arm. I need to put oil.” No. Sleep.

“I need. I need!” Ok quickly put oil and lie down.

#5 will take the opportunity to start telling some jokes.

Enough, both of you! Keep quiet!

#5: “I need to use the toilet.” You just went!

“I need!” Ok. GO!

And this can go on until 8.30.

Some days, I get so worked up I start yelling at them.


Then I lose it and start ranting.

“Why must you two keep on messing around until I get angry, yell at you before you sleep? WHY??” Can’t you yada yada yada…

Some days, when I’ve had a tough day, I cut myself some slack and just GIVE UP.

I lie down, close my eyes, and let all their talking and quibbling wash over me, and tell myself that they will fall asleep.

When it felt like they will go on forever, I open my eyes, ready to hiss some orders.

But then, I see them doing the simplest, sweetest things. Being siblings.

Sibling love

And I let it slide.

Ah well, sometimes, these precious moments are worth the delayed bedtime.

#5 will eventually be knocked out as he wakes up at 5.30am to catch the school bus.

But Kate? She will be busy arranging and re-arranging her soft toys, softly singing lullabies to them, and patting them to sleep.

At this juncture, if the hubs walks into the room, in my drowsy state, I can hear him say, “She put you to sleep again?”

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

My first attempt at baking for Teacher’s Day

Every year, the older girls will invite their friends over and have a massive teacher’s day bake. Somehow, they manage to make delicious cookies and muffins, much to my surprise. I mean, home-baked goodies from students? Um…

This year is the first time Kate is celebrating Teacher’s Day and I wanted to show my appreciation to her teachers who have taken such good care of her these past 8 months.

Moist banana cake

They have gone beyond their duty of imparting knowledge to her, and have guided her closely in shaping her character and values as well, while being attuned to her emotional needs.

Day in, day out, they handle the little tikes with infinite patience and professionalism, never once raising their voices, yet managing to keep them within firm boundaries. I really can’t ask for more in her dedicated educators.

I decided that the only fitting gift I could give them is something home-made with sincerity. Her teacher buys fruit for the kids to share during snack time and it would be lovely if I could bake them something yummy for this special day at school.

Fresh from the oven

One of our yoga mummies is a consummate baker and brought a fragrant banana cake for my birthday celebration. It was heavenly, and I’ve been longing for another slice of it since then. So freshly baked banana cake it was going to be.

My girls looked quizzically at me, “Mum, you sure you want to bake for Kate’s teachers?” My past few cookie attempts failed pretty miserably because I tried to substitute too many ingredients with what I had on hand.

Amazingly, this turned out well, and ours vanished in the blink of an eye. Here’s the recipe if you are keen to try it out!

I would like to wish all teachers, not only school teachers, but teachers in every capacity, a very Happy Teacher’s Day!

May you continue to touch lives and inspire others with what you do.

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

Kate’s antics: Unbridled enthusiasm

I haven’t been posting Kate’s antics for quite awhile because now that she’s past two and a half, her cute behaviours have diminished drastically, and been replaced by funny things she says which crack us up.

Her character is also starting to show and she is still a bundle of joy to have around the house (so far!)

My masterpieces!

This morning, she found 2 little buttons and laboriously stuck them onto a piece of paper (took many tries with the glue stick before they attached properly).

She scribbled something on it and presented it to me with such aplomb.

Look MUM!

I have a PRESENT for YOU!

And I drew your NAME!

WOWWWW… isn’t it nice, mum?

Well, the gift was nothing to rave about, but it sure lifted my spirits and put a big smile on my face.

Now I absolutely understand the meaning of ‘the gift of a smile’.

Anything we do for another with utmost sincerity in an attempt to make them happy is nothing short of a wonderful gift.

Happy Friday everyone! Hope you are enjoying you long weekend with your primary school kids!

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

Kate’s antics: Flying fox

Who says a 2-year old can’t go on the flying fox?


Behind every successful toddler is a team of enthusiastic siblings / cousins.



And off they go to give her the extra boost.

Hanging on tight

Running ahead to catch her.

West Coast Park playground

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

Simple fine motor activity for 2-year olds

I love finding things around the house to use as ‘toys’ for Kate to play by herself. I got an old jewellery case from one of the older girls and gathered loose buttons from the sewing box, and viola! A splendid activity that kept her occupied for half an hour.

Assorted buttons

She carefully filled the container then tried pouring the buttons back into the little box. Most of it fell all over the table and she had a nice time picking them all up. And she did it on repeat mode. Nice.

She was so proud of herself.

“Look, mum!”

After she was bored of the buttons, I brought out a box of mini pegs. If I’m not wrong, I got it from Typo. Great fine motor skills and concentration going on over there.

I was surprised she decided to use her left hand to try it out as well, even without me prompting her.

I also noticed she used both hands to get the peg in a good position, which makes it a great activity for crossing the midline, which encourages communication between the right and left brain.

I was busy doing my own thing and when she called out to me to come see what she had done, I was impressed that she put the materials together!

Sane tip: I prepare it during her nap and take it out when she wakes. I simply rotate the materials every once in a while by walking around the house and picking up suitable items.

Save tip: When I had #1, I made up most of her toys myself. As we started to have more kids, I was too busy to think about toys. I’m finding it fun again to let Kate play with such versatile materials, which is way better than mechanical toys.

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

Discipline #8: What do you do when your 2-year old lies?

I was caught off guard when Kate’s teacher informed me that she had told a lie. I have to admit that in my earlier years of parenting, when faced with such an awkward situation, I would have either fumbled for a reply, made some excuses or doubted the teacher. My kid? No way! There must have been some mistake.

Instead, I remained calm and wanted to know the whole story so that I could figure out how to deal with it. This was how it went.


Kate had taken a new activity to play with, and her Chinese teacher asked if she had been taught how to work with it. Kate immediately replied, “Yes.” Her Chinese teacher knew it was not the case and asked who had demonstrated it to her. Kate responded, “Ms Sha”, without batting an eyelid. Ms Sha overheard the conversation and walked over. Kate knew her lie had been exposed and looked down, afraid to look into Ms Sha’s eyes. Her teachers took the opportunity to teach her that lying is wrong.

The thing was, we were shocked that a 2.5 year old knows how to lie so blatantly!

On the way home, I reiterated that it was wrong of her to lie. However, I knew deep down in my heart that the problem lies with us, not her. After all, little kids imitate and absorb what they see and hear.

At dinner, I told the rest of the family what had transpired that day. The kids were old enough to point out that “adults also tell white lies, even you and daddy, so that must have been where she picked it up from”. They recounted many instances where the truth was not spoken.

  • You always say, “Everyone is going”. (to a child, everyone would literally mean every single person. Ok, I’d better wipe that one off my list of constantly used words.)
  • Dad tells whoever we are meeting that “We are almost there” when we had just left the house. I heard Uncle T say that last week too.
  • Aunt J always promise us that she’s coming to visit soon. But she never does.
  • You said you’ll be back in 15 minutes. You lied.
With 5 “witnesses” to our daily behavior, the examples came fast and furious.
I had nothing so say. The kids were right.
The next day, I was on high alert to what I was saying and what others around me were saying to Kate.
  • Kate spotted the Crocs shoes her cousin passed down to her and wanted to wear it. As we were going to the mall (we try not to allow Kate to wear Crocs on escalators), our helper said, “Cannot”. Kate persisted. “I want”. She quickly replied, “Cannot. Got lizard poo poo.” Kate said “Where? Let me see.” (of course, there was none.)
  • The girls were eating sweets and when Kate asked for some, they replied, “No more.”
  • I went home and found #5 quietly giving Kate his snacks (which are too salty for her) and when I boomed, “Why are you giving her the pretzels?”, he said, “Just a few.”. I’m sure she had way more than a few.
  • There were countless instances where words came out of my mouth before I realised they were not the absolute truth.

I noticed a pattern here. We instinctively try to shade the truth to avoid her whining or crying, so that we don’t have to deal with it. Unknowingly, we taught her to lie.

It’s not about her.

It’s about us.

It’s about me.

So. Where do I go from here?

I’ve decided that I’ll start focusing on improving one parenting skill at a time until I conquer it. Then I’ll work on the next one.

Here’s the first:


Anyone joining me?

Here are some good tips on how to help your child deal with lying, over at Life’s Tiny Miracles blog.

Other discipline tips (which I’ve learnt after having 6 kids):

Discipline #8: What do you do when your 2-year old lies?
Discipline #9: When the gramps can’t say ‘no’
Discipline #10: 6 Tips to stop tantrums in toddlers

Discipline #11: Who has the energy to discipline our kids

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

Kate’s antics: Mummy can have her churros and eat it

What do mothers with young kids really want for Mother’s day? It’s such a dilemma for me.  I want to be with my family, yet I also want to enjoy a day off without any sound of bickering or whining. I have finally found the perfect solution. Spread it over the weekend!

On Saturday, we went for a leisurely lunch with my parents as we don’t like to squeeze with the crowds on Sunday and be limited to mother’s day menus.

I used to have to sit next to Kate to see her through the meal but now that she is more independent, her sisters can handle her.

So many jie jies to dote on her

On Sunday, I declared a day off and escaped to Sentosa Cove for a lovely lunch with some friends. Kate was such a dear. She kept herself occupied with the art counter set up for the occasion and painted me a heart. When she had enough of that, she came back to our table for her lunch. She fed herself and when she was done, asked if she could go back for some face painting. Sure, why not? Anything that keeps you quiet, my dear 😉

Learning to be ambidextrous?

Soon it was her nap time and she automatically came to look for me and said, “I want to sleep.” She drank her milk then promptly fell asleep in her stroller for 2 hours.

Quayside Isle

What bliss. Seeing your child sleeping soundly is always a delightful sight. And at a place as charming as Quayside Isle, along with good company? Nothing short of a perfect afternoon.

Sabio by the Sea
And the best part of our long lunch? Savouring the heavenly warm churros morsel by morsel, without having to deny (or share with) Kate such a sinful dessert 😉

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

Kate’s antics: #2’s award ceremony

#2 managed to top her level in English and I took Kate along to the awards ceremony. The hubs was away and we decided that Kate would have the role as his stand-in anytime daddy was not around.

Guess who had a whale of a time there?

Being amused by jie jie’s friends

None of them have siblings so young and they were all squealing, “Sooo cute!”

“Up top!”

Having a snack while waiting for the ceremony to begin.

“Should I eat this or save it for later?”
It was the first time she met #2’s teacher but took to her immediately.
Bear hug
When the awards were being given out, she went and sat in the front row with the VIPs even though she has never met any of them before! 
Lil’ miss congeniality
~ www.mummyweeblog.com – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~