Word Games...

~ Posted on Monday, September 08, 2014 at 7:19 AM ~

I have recently started playing word games with our 5.5 years old boy. I noticed he is slowly picking up phonics and spelling stuff based on the homework he brought home every other day from his preschool.

I started off with A for apple, A for aeroplane when he was around 4 years old but I guess it doesn't stick with him until he learns about phonics before he started preK this year.

Now we go with me starting off the game saying 'What starts with bah (for letter b, it is pronounced as 'bah')?' I will start off with the first answer for example I would say, 'Bah! Bah for bah-sket (for basket)' then we will continue until we ran out of words that starts with the letter B.

The other day while in the car coming back from our family breakfast outing, I started the game again. I went 'What starts with 'terh' (for letter T)? Terh! Terh for train!' then our boy continued with 'terh for tram'. At one point he said 'terh for thought'. I did not expect him to know this word at his age - as in to associate this word to start with the letter t. I asked him 'Do you know your terh for thought', what does the thought word means?' And he told us 'Thought like I thought I am a boy!' Silly, but yes, he got the concept right! He knows the meaning of the word though I am sure he does not know how to spell it yet at this point in time but hey, 5.5 years old telling me 'terh for thought' awesome possum!

I will definitely be continuing on with this game, who knows, I might learn from him too!

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Braised Yee Mee Cantonese Style

~ Posted on Saturday, September 06, 2014 at 12:30 PM ~

For this post, I am sharing my next food recipe, Braised Yee Mee Cantonese Style. We normally order this when we have family gathering in restaurants but I've decided to gove this a try ever since hubby commented how nice it is after a family gathering recently. Without further ado, here is the recipe for Braised Yee Mee Cantonese Style:

* 4 pieces of yee mee (this is for my family of 5)
* Prawns, shells removed and removed (quantity up to you)
* Garlic (quantity up to you, the more the better flavor - cut into small slices)
* Fish cakes (quantity up to you, cut into thin slices about 5mm thickness)
* Choy sum

For the sauce:
* 2 eggs
* 1 tbsp of sesame oil
* 2 tbsp of light soy sauce
* 2 tbsp of oyster sauce
* 1/2 tsp of chicken stock (powder)
* 1/2 tsp of pepper
* 1 tsp of sugar
* Salt to taste
* 2 cups of water (to make the gravy/sauce)
* 1 tbsp of oil for frying the prawn

- You can use chicken, squid or other meat as well
- You can use other veggies such as corn, carrots
- If you prefer your gravy to be thicker, add in cornflour

* Blanch yee mee in boiling water for few minutes (I do until noodles are al dente)
* Drain off the water and set aside the noodles
* Heat up oil in pan, add in garlic and stir fry the garlic until you smell nice garlic-ky smell from the frying pan. Be careful not to overfry them as it will give bitter taste then
* Add prawn and stir fry until it turns to nice pinky colour.
* Add fish cake slices and continue stir frying
* Add in sauce and vegetables and cook for a few more minutes
1st method: You may add in yee mee as well and cooked it together in the sauce or
2nd method: You may pour the hot sauce onto the yee mee in a plate and let the sauce soaked into the noodles.

I did both options, same results though if you choose the earlier method, your noodles will be softer (and tastier) since it is cooked and soaked in the sauce longer.
* Ready to serve



I had no idea this dish is so well received by my family, not even half hour after cooking this, our 3 kiddos were whacking their 2nd plate of the braised noodles. Hubby got home half an hour later and I cooked (using the 2nd method) and he had 2 plates of it. The noodles was all gone and I only managed to eat 2 spoonfuls of it. So yeah, I ended up chowing down a butter bun and a quarter slice of mooncake as my dinner that day.

To view my other recipes, feel free to hop over to my Recipe Library page for more info!

Lessons From A Broken Cup...

~ Posted on Friday, September 05, 2014 at 7:20 AM ~

A few months ago, we were having our dinner at a Japanese restaurant. Our 5.5 years old boy was pretty stable with using the porcelain cup to drink the green tea for a few outings already. All of a sudden, the cup slipped (water stains at the bottom causing it to still move when you placed it on the table surface) and fell onto the floor, breaking in 2 pieces.

In this situation, we can choose to react or respond.

According to this article, there are differences between reacting and responding.

"React in action

When people react, it seems to be defensive. We seem to be at a disadvantage. We are uncomfortable with what is being said or done, and we react. In our reactions, our emotions take a central role. The hair on our neck stands on end. We feel our stomach turn. Our face heats up and our defenses are on red alert.

We know reactions when we see it. In fact, some people on the other side will intentionally stoke the fires, especially when they know we will react. They know if they poke we will coil up and be ready to react in a full way. There is a downside to reacting. We let emotions without reason drive us forward. We lose control. Reacting is sporadic and emotional. The upside may be passion, but our passion needs to be centered on purpose, not an unexpected, unproductive stimulus."

"Respond in action

On the flip side is respond. There is still an external spur to our response. Responding, though, is more thoughtful. Responses contain reasoning. The difference may be this: Responding is guided less by emotion and more by logic. Responding may be passive in nature, as we are going second in a series. However, a response is more active, and it can change the direction of an interaction. The upside of a solid response is an engaging conversation, all positive and all civil. We learn. We grow. We listen. We respond. We act forthrightly and from within."

Being a parent with few small children, our first reactions automatically will be shocked of a cup falling onto the floor, "Is my child hurt?", "Will he be terrified?", "Will there by any tantrums?"

 Our boy's reactions was pertty obvious. He was scared, guilty and then he got defensive.

Scared for breaking the cup.

Guilty for breaking the cup.

Defensive as he does not mean to cause that incident and was afraid we are going to blame and scold him.

We then proceeded to calm him down, spoke to him in gentle voice, assuring him it is okay, mummy and daddy are not angry with him, that accidents happen and most important is he is not hurt.

He apologised after he calmed down and tried to pick up the broken pieces and even tried to put the pieces back together again. I had to stop him as I feared he might cut himself. I told him again, it is okay, as long as he knows he did wrong and feel remorseful and promised to be extra careful next time. Happy to say no more accidents since then :)

I think other than a lesson for him to be more careful next time (and that accidents happened though we must admit and take responsibility if it is our mistake), it is also a lesson for us parents as well. How we react and respond to a situation will affect our kiddos and surrounding.

** Read: Ecclesiastes 7:9 (NIV) ~ Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.

** Note: I have disabled the commenting feature on my blog engine thanks to all the spammers who happily spam my blog every day. If you wish to ask me any questions, you can find me at my Facebook page (I'm there almost everyday) or just drop me an email if you wish to maintain some anonymity.