Megan’s 1st year birthday dinner!

October 2016

And so our youngest turned one on the 12th of October. We had a birthday dinner celebration on the weekend before her birthday as Kimberly was in London. No better place than to have our dinner at Duck & Waffle! Duck & Waffle restaurant is located on the 40th floor of 110 Bishopsgate in the city of London. The views of bustling London City from where we sat were just stunning!

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I have heard so much about the restaurant but I did not expect the food to be so exceptional. The signature-Duck and Waffle was absolutely delish but everything else was comparably good! There was definitely nothing left on the plates! The service was nothing short of excellent!

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(Rosemary and Garlic bread)

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(Lamb Keema, Hara Bhara Sauce bread)

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(The famous Duck and Waffle! We had two of this!)

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(Angus Bone-in Rib-eye)

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(Whole Roasted Chicken)

Here are some photos that we took while waiting for our food to come! Not too many photos of our girls- Gillian and Megan slept through almost the end of dinner and only woke up just before the cake came out from the kitchen.It was a lovely evening, watching the sun set while dining. As the younger ones were asleep, we managed dinner without much fuss.

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 Our one year old Megan woke up for a taste of the chicken drumstick. According to old Chinese tradition, having a chicken drumstick on their first birthday symbolises good fortune of never worrying about food thereafter.

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A strawberry cheese birthday cake to complete the celebration!

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It was a fabulous evening and we are thankful to have the loving company of Mama, Gong Gong and Yiyi(who is now the children’s Godma). The past year has been nothing but beautiful- I feel blessed that I have been given this opportunity to care for Baby Megan since birth.

12 months whizzed past so quickly. Megan is becoming a young toddler- she has taken her first steps at 10 months, she is able to say a number of words, ‘Mama’, ‘Milk’, ‘Dada’, ‘Yiyi’, ‘Jie Jie’, ‘Gege’, ‘More’, she is able to understand a few of our instructions. She loves her siblings, music and dancing. I feel grateful for every moment that I am able to spend with her and thankful of how her hugs always make my worries melt away. 🙂

Happy first year, Megan. May you grow up safely, healthily and always want to seek for Christ.

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Click on these links to read more about the first birthdays of Megan’s siblings.

Ryan

Gillian

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April the Tenth

April 2015

We brought the April 10th babies(Mummy, Ryan and Gillian)and Kimberly for an Easter Egg Hunt at Leeds Castle on their birthday. It was not our first time to Leeds; in fact, we liked it so much, we bought the annual family pass for 2015! Thankfully, the weather was glorious that Sunday. It was sunny yet cool, the start of spring. Flowers were blooming everywhere at Leeds Castle. Just picturesque! Ryan and Gillian enjoyed their first Easter Hunt session at Mudchute Farm and were looking forward to the one held at Leeds Castle.

Just like any other egg hunts, the children needed to look around for eggs or clues to answer the question on the Easter Egg Hunt sheet they were given. At the end of it, those with the correct answers will be given their sinful treats! So, you can imagine they started the day with strong enthusiasm. They did get rewarded at the end of out trip and our dear Ryan gobbled up his chocolate egg within minutes. Gillian’s chocolate egg went into Kimberly’s tummy though…because the birthday girl fell asleep. Heehee.

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The April 10th Babies! Baby M will not be an April 10th baby but she will be just as loved because I will share the same birthday month as her! Happy birthday to my three April Tenth loves! Three of you have brought so much joy and laughter to my life. God has blessed me so much with three of you.

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Me and my growing family!

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The Lee ladies!

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At this point in time, my camera battery died. Boohoo! The rest of the photos were taken by my camera phone before it died as well. No photos of birthday dinner as well!

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We had a picnic by the lake. The children definitely prefer having a picnic than to sit at some restaurant where we have to continually remind them of behaving well. (-_-)”’  Ryan and Gillian ran around at the playground with E. Mummy and I lazed under the sun. Kimberly tried the maze and got out in under 10 minutes. Before we knew it, it was getting late. We needed to rush to Smyth’s Toy Store to get the little ones their presents and grab a proper birthday dinner at Saikei.

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We bought two bubble guns for the birthday stars at £10 each from some vendor at Leeds Castle. I thought it was quite expensive till we saw that Hamleys was selling something similar at £18 each and two for £30. The bubble guns were quite a good investment as we used it throughout Spring and parts of Summer till one of it spoilt. The kids loved their bubble guns and they were such fun toys to bring to bring to parks and playgrounds.

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BIRTHDAY CAKE CUTTING!

Ryan and Gillian were spoilt with presents from Mama, Gong Gong, Kimberly, Leon and Bob. E and I got a bicycle for Ryan and a toy keyboard for Gillian from Smyth’s. Both of the children were entranced with the toy keyboard that came along with a microphone. They were fighting over it to sing Frozen’s ‘Let it Go’. It was quite a hilarious sight, if you asked me.

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Happy birthday to my April, the Tenth babies!
This blog post maybe a few months late but that does not mean you are lesser in any way.
May God bless all of you in ever way possible.
I love you babies so so so much!

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(Richmond Park)(New Malden)

April 2015

April came too soon and it was time for Mummy and Kimberly to return to Singapore. The trip to Heathrow was horrid, as usual, because of the morning work traffic. Thankfully, we managed to get to the airport on time. Parting is always hard, especially when my Mummy has always been a strong emotional support for me. Despite me being the younger adult, I need her much more than she needs me.   😦

I ended up crying buckets of tears after they entered the departure gates. E and my children had to comfort me for ages. It was hard to know that I would be without my parents in London for the birth of my third child. I supposed God heard my prayers and my parents will be visiting us again in August September! Yay! In fact, my mom would be able to stay with us for at least 3 months, so she will be able to be around when Baby M pops! That is really awesome news for me and the children! They simply love her cooking!

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Kingston Gate Playground at Richmond Park

E decided that we should all head to Richmond Park for some fresh air to cheer me and the children up. Ryan and Gillian were so excited to see the deer grazing around freely.

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Ryan and Gillian enjoyed playing with the timber structures in the playground. The two of them love exploring new playgrounds and play areas. When I do recall my childhood, my best memories are usually found at the playgrounds as well. For me, it would be Pasir Ris Big Playground(the one with the red spider web) as well as the two playgrounds at the back of my Ah Ma’s shop. Man… those were the days were so carefree and imaginative. As an adult now, I am obviously less enthusiastic about these playgrounds. The reasons why I do visit them so frequently is because I know these are the place where I see the kids’ wide smiles while they are on a simple swing or when they are going down a slide.

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Making marks on the ground.

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After the play, we went to Sula at New Malden for our lunch. Everything was really tasty! The children liked the fresh sashimi in particular. They gobbled the sashimi up within minutes! To be honest, Sula is the only Korean restaurant we have been to in New Malden but it has given us no reason to look for something else. It is as authentic as authentic gets.

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After lunch, we just dropped into some random hair salon for my haircut. I suppose that is what you call a breakup haircut for me. Usually, after the parting of a relationship(romantic or not), I always have to visit a hair salon for a drastic haircut. I suppose it is a way for my subconscious self to relieve some form of stress. Thankfully, the Korean hairstylist did a pretty good job because over time, I did gradually liked my new bob! In fact, I am thinking of going to that particular hair salon for a trim when we visit New Malden again.

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Here’s a picture of my new hairstyle! The shortest that I have spotted since maybe 20? E also thought it was a good change. Hmm.. he rarely complains anything about my appearance actually. In that aspect, I cannot complain much about him. Everyday, he tells me that I am beautiful. (Which of course, I know cannot be true in reality but it is nice to have someone who’s a fan. Heehee)

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Right now, I am counting down to the day when my parents arrives in September! Yay!

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Updates on Pregnancy Journey!

June 2015

As I am writing this, I am already past the first trimester and am in my 22nd week of pregnancy. With each pregnancy, one can no longer deny that age is taking a toll on me. I feel more tired easily and am no longer as active as I was before in my first two pregnancies. Well, the lethargy could be also due to me having to manage my two little darlings in the day- doing the school run, playgroups, lunch and household chores. Getting heavier is also a problem for my mobility. Every morning, I need to do the school run on the double buggy with Ryan and Gillian. School run will take me 30-40 minutes per way. Thankfully, summer is here and we do not need to handle all the layering of clothes and heavy coats.

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Here’s Gillian and me, on one of those mornings when we lull time together while waiting for Ryan to finish his nursery. Spending time alone with her is really a joy. She is very communicative and we always have a good laugh together.

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Food Cravings!

This pregnancy constantly have me craving for Singaporean cuisine and the usual suspects like sashimi and seafood. For Singaporean food, we will just make do with Roti King. In fact, we have Roti King every time we head off to town or for the hospital checkups. (Maybe when I do get less tired, I will blog about my pregnancy journey so far in London, as in my experience with NHS and all.)

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This Roti King meal with drinks easily cost us £18. Madness right! Just for roti prata and nasi lemak! Ohwells. What to do?

I also have this thing for lobsters. No kidding. I mean. When I was pregnant with Ryan and Gillian in Singapore, the cravings used to be chilli and pepper crabs. Baby Number Three apparently likes lobsters. On the day we went for the baby’s first scan, we celebrated by having Lobster and Burger. E also treated me to cheese lobster yeemien for Mother’s Day. I was definitely very sated on those occasions. In fact, I am craving for lobsters now and hoping that if I do finish this blog before E returns home from work(assuming that he read the post), I would be in for some surprise! Tricky tricky!

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I do try to cook to satisfy my cravings as well. It is okay. Edible. Seriously, spending 2ish hours in the kitchen to whip up something like mee siam, chwee kueh is really too much effort. Not very worth the work to feed just me and E. E is of course very appreciative when I do make time to cook these dishes. With my weight increasing so much(especially these few weeks), I find that even standing in the kitchen on 1ish hour for food preparation is killing me. I am quite unhealthy right?

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Mood Swings

Yes. I have very bad mood swings which E gets the brunt of it. This is very much so because we have no family support here and also because of my health and back conditions. I tend to be very sensitive to what he says. Something that he probably says in passing in the heat of argument will easily set me bawling into tears. I think after talking out a couple of times, both of us have backed off quite a bit. Basically, I just need to nitpick less and he will help out more. In fact, he has been taking the kids off my hands for at least a hour or two per week while I get to just vegetate at home. The precious personal time keeps me sane. The thing is that marriage is hard work. Much harder with young children in a foreign land. This period of time is both challenging to us as well as fulfilling when we get over the obstacles. So, thank you, Mister E.

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Gillian and I meet up with E at least once a week for lunch near his workplace.

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E and the kids went for a failed kite expedition. The kite got stuck to a tree.

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They went to pedoboat without me.

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Ryan/Gillian

The kids also have to be more sensible. Surprisingly, both of them are really good helpers now. Yes, they do make a mess when they play or eat. But on a whole, they are very loving towards each other, me and the new sibling. Ryan and Gillian are the ones who give me a good calf massage. For the past week, the kids have allowed me an hour of nap while the play in the living room. Honestly, I am very thankful to God. For despite all the issues we face, there is always a way out.

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Okay, I will need to handle the kids now. Break time’s over! Will try to update as much as possible about this third(and possibly my last) pregnancy!

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Update as of 12 June 2015, 8ish pm.

I got my lobster roll as my treat! The blog post worked! E bought me this yummilicious lobster brioche roll for dinner! Yay! Baby and I are loved!

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Norfolk Cottage Weekend

May 2015

Day 1: The long 4 hour drive.

And so the big weekend for the cottage came. The initial plan for the cottage weekend was to be in March. Unfortunately, Baby Emily and Edward were consecutively down with chicken pox. We had to shift the dates then. Fortunately, we did so as the weather was much more suitable in May. Less cold and definitely more enjoyable for everyone then.

The cottage of seven rooms was to house four families- 7 children and 11 adults for 4 days, 3 nights. Erhm… Unlike E, I am not a fan of communal living. So, days before the big trip, I had my apprehensions and worries(because we had to cook for everyone for one of the two dinners). I was whining to E about the packing and anything that could be complained about. I supposed he took it in good stride or he is able to tune off very successfully these days. Anyways, it turned out to be quite okay and I am so happy to see the children- all seven of them enjoying themselves so much over the weekend. The thing about being a parent, one can no longer live for ourselves. Sometimes, happiness is about seeing someone’s smile.

Days prior to the big weekend, we told the children about our cottage plans and they were sure excited. Ryan, who is older and understandably more sensible started packing the toys that he thought he needed for the trip. Being the very lazy mother that I am, I only packed and bought everything the day before the trip. I am always surprised by how laid back I am these days. Gosh…

On the day of the trip, we set off at 2ish in the afternoon and only got to the cottage by 6pm, after taking one pit stop where we met Ken and Yiling’s family. So, it was almost a good 4 hours on the road. Thank God that Ryan and Gillian were quite cooperative throughout the road trip. Being the worrier that I am, I keep having possible horror scenes of either of them screaming/fighting/puking. Puking being the worst scenario because it is just gross, we have to clean it and it will smell for the entire trip!

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Ryan, Edward and Gillian chilling out at Starbucks during the pit stop.

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The Suffolk Cottage!

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Okay, this is the back of the cottage. I don’t think I took a picture of the front. According to the owner, this cottage is like 400ish years old. That is like super old. Even the locks for the toilets and doors were like ancient trickery. To me, at least. Hot water for the toilets on the second floor had to be heated using the fireplace on the first floor. No kidding. That is like something so unbelievable.

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This room was shared by Gillian and me!

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This room is shared between Ryan and E.

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This is the bathroom that is thankfully next to our room. Ryan and Gillian did some some time playing in the bath tub. They just love their bathtub time. Heehee.

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Dinner was just store bought pizzas by Ken and Yiling. Kids and pizzas pretty much go hand in hand!

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After the bath, dinner and some running about, it was almost bed time for all the younger ones. In fact, E and I turned in early as well. It was a crazy 4 hour drive from London, the longest that we have driven so far. Exhausting but so much to look forward to in the next few days!

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Day 2: Park/Playground. Lunch at Castle Carvery. More playtime at Castle Carvery.

The second morning was relatively lazy. Everyone woke up and the wives started preparing breakfast for their families. Erhm… everyone’s breakfast looked very fancy. Eggs, hams, sausages, toast. Between my family members, we shared one loaf of garlic bread. *sigh* Long story. No kidding.

Anyways, soon after breakfast, we brought the kids outside the cottage for some play! They definitely enjoyed the free play on the field! Those play stations in the backyard are actually meant for the cottage owner to train her dog. Well… the kids apparently had fun at the stations as well!

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With kids, parks and playgrounds are always on the itinerary.

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Lunch was at Castle Carvery. It was the typical English spread- roast, fish and chips and whatnots. The special thing about Castle Carvery was that it had an indoor and outdoor play area. So you can imagine that the place was very kids-friendly. After lunch, two families took off on their own while we stayed back with Peizhen’s family to just pass time at the play area. It was pretty much a lazy, catch-up-on-energy day.

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I have started putting pens and colour pencils in the kids’ backpacks. They are very useful to entertain them while waiting for the food to come. And if you are wondering, I do allow the kids to watch videos after they have eaten as well. And yes, if you are judging, I also think I am a bad and irresponsible parent. Totally trying to cut this aspect out. Hard. And we are trying to be better parents everyday. Hard.

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We returned to the cottage in the late afternoon because Yee Yin and I had to prepare dinner for everyone. The plan was to have two families each to prepare dinner for Day 2 and Day 3. I intended to cook chicken rice…and it was quite disastrous. Because my rice cooker was not working to put it simply. It was a tough evening but thankfully some of the ladies helped out and the rice eventually was cooked. I was really happy when everyone got their dinner in the end and when bed time arrived.

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Day 3- Indoor Adventure Centre Adventure Island Play Park. Lunch at The Thatch. Playtime by the seaside at Southwold Pier.

The day started off looking rather gloomy, followed by light rain. Initially, we intended to head to Africa Alive but the rain got heavier and we decided to go for an indoor play park instead. Adventure Island Play Park it was then! Ryan and Gillian had a ball at the play park.

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Here’s Daddy with his princess. Gillian woke up with a sore eye. It was quite nasty as it lasted for at least 3 days and went off after we seen a doctor in London for antibiotic eye drops.

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Ryan and his latest new friend, Charlotte. She is 5 and he is 4. A rather good age for them to understand each other.

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The kids had a wild time for an hour-ish before we went for lunch near Southwold Pier. Lunch was at The Thatch.

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I had salmon pasta, E had his steak while the children shared toad-in-hole.

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Here’s two pictures of my children looking very earnest in making their wishes. I love how they are always very serious about making wishes and praying to God(for requests!).

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Here’s a picture of me and the love of my life.

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The evening for Day 3 was much more relaxed since I did not have to cook. Just hung out with the kids in the living room. E took the kids out with Tawei and attempted to fly a kite. But they failed. Had a nice dinner prepared by the other two families and then I concussed with the kids. E even managed to stay up and play cards with the rest of the parents. Amazing!

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Day 4- Africa Alive and then back to London!

It was the last day of our trip and weather was fabulous! The four families decided to go to Africa Alive since we all know the kids would love looking at the animals. It was a good decision as it seemed that we all enjoyed our time there. However, some of us had to leave earlier as the dads/mums had to work the next day. Boohoo!

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Here’s Gillian on our double stroller that I bought second hand on a Facebook group! 80 quid!

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Poor sweetheart still with her sore eye.

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We checked out a few animal shows, went on a zoo train ride around the compounds, played in the playground, played mini golf, had our lunch and treat. Basically, we squeezed in whatever activity that we could in those 3-4 hours before returning to the cottage, did some mad packing and drove all the way back to London. No pit stop as the kids were whining too much in the car. This time round, we managed to get back home under 3 hours. That is a feat. Thank you, Mister E for keeping all of us safe while you were driving!

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This basically sums up our first cottage trip in London. There were not many pictures taken. Not as many as I would like anyways as I was feeling quite sick throughout the trip. In fact, whilst the kids had much fun at the cottage, I think everyone was glad to be in the comforts of home. Nothing really beats home. I spent the next few days doing the laundry, and trying to care for the two little ones as they fell sick after the trip. Boohoo but overall, we did enjoyed ourselves and would like to be much better prepared the next time!

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Ryan’s birthday celebration in school!

March 2015

As Ryan’s birthday falls during mid term, we decided to throw him an early birthday celebration in school. Thankfully Mama was around to help us with the preparation of the goodie bags before the party. We were semi going for a pirate theme as Ryan is very into the Swashbuckles on Cbeebies. He was dressed as a pirate on the day of the celebration. Heehee.

He and his friends were very excited on the week of the celebration! On that particular week, his friends kept asking me if it was Ryan’s birthday on every occasion they saw me in school. Not sure who let the cat out of the bag but all the little ones were very happy on the actual day of the party!

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This is a picture of Ryan’s cosy classroom.

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When his teachers and friends starting singing him the birthday song, Ryan looked so shy! It was such an adorable sight. In fact, we were allowed to join in the mini celebration. So, our little birthday girl, Gillian did managed to bask in some of the lime light as well. In fact, Gillian is no stranger to Ryan’s classmates as they see each other everyday. Before the party, she was running around with Ryan’s classmates in the garden. She loves the attention from the older children. Heehee.

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After the blowing of candles, Ryan ran towards me so shyly, hugged me, told me that he was so happy and thanked me. That was quite a cute moment as he looked as though he was going to burst with joy, a reaction that I did not expect from him. I always thought he was quite ambivalent about such celebrations- like, ‘Fine, there is a nice cake.’ I never thought he could vocalise his feelings. So, that was a nice surprise!

Yes, there you go. This is Ryan’s first class birthday celebration in London. There is always a first for everything and I am glad this is a a good one for everyone.

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New Malden- Korean Town

January 2015

I suppose you guys have figured out that I am catching up with my older posts for 2015. The weather is getting better. In fact, today(6th April 2015), it is actually sunny. How lovely. However, we just came home from a 2 days road trip(Dover-Canterbury) and needed to stay in today to recuperate for the week.We got home last evening and basically, we have been vegetating the entire time there after. Gosh… are we old or are we old?

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In the winter of January, we decided to head off to New Malden for some nice Korean BBQ and shopping. Who would have known that before we even left Central London, we met with a tiny problem. E accidentally rammed our car up a curb and one of the tires got punctured. It was definitely not pleasant as it was raining rather heavily and we did not exactly know what to do. 😦 With the power of technology and mobile data, we did managed to get help at a cost of £200. Not a cool start to the journey…and we had to wait for at least 1.5 hour for the replacement to come.

E waited in the car while the rest of us went for for a coffee break at Costa.

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We did managed to continue our journey to New Malden. We did have a teeny ween pitstop Richmond Park. Our original intention is to have the kids play in the park for a while before going off for dinner. But, I suppose we just under estimated the cold that day. It was freezing and Gillian(who seldom had an opinion of the weather) kept complaining to me that she was cold. While driving through the park, we saw some lovely deer and the children were so excited upon seeing them!

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We got to New Malden around 5ish and decided to have our dinner at Su La Korean Restaurant. OMG! Best Korean food I had in London, I tell you. Being a big fan of yakiniku, I was overjoyed to be having grilled beef slices. Even now, I can salivate while looking at the yummy food pictures! I love everything on the menu! Kimberly and the children love the kimchi and egg omelette!  So so so yums! It is a pity that New Malden is quite far from our place in London, lest I would be asking E to bring us there every weekend!

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After dinner, we went shopping at H Mart and bought so many korean products to store at home. Heehee. We bought enough to grant us a membership card. Just madness! Everything looks so fresh and interesting at H Mart!

It was so unfortunate the the drive back home was also quite terrible as there was some traffic accident. It took us about 3(instead of the 1.5 hour) hours before we got home. Still, I will not complain because it had been some time since I managed to indulged in my favourite Korean food!

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