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9 and a 1/2

You’ve waited all year round for this day to proclaim to the world
that you are finally 9 and a 1/2.
But in actual fact, you’re only 9.

I find it amusing that as kids, you can’t wait to grow up.
While as parents, we felt that you’re all growing up way too soon.

9 years from the first cries that made me mom,
today we are already celebrating your transition into tweenhood…

Happy Birthday Hiroshi!

We stumbled upon The Queen & Mangosteen at Vivo City (#01-106/107).
The Lunch Special seems like a very good deal!
The Queen and mangosteen Vivo City

Soup of the day was Mushroom Soup. And our votes were unanimous…
Even James agrees that the unadulterated creamy Mushroom Soup is outta this world!
The Queen & Mangosteen Vivo City Mushroom Soup

Chicken Cordon Bleu, Red Snapper Loin, Braised Ox-tail.
The Queen & Mangosteen Vivo City Lunch Special

Hiroshi and Sophia gave 2 thumbs up for the food.
The queen and Mangosteen Lunch Special

$16.90++ for Soup of the day and Main course with free flow drinks is a steal.

Attentive service staff.

The cozy ambiance coupled with a panoramic waterfront view of scenic Sentosa makes The Queen & Mangosteen a perfect dinning location for many different occasions.
The Queen & Mangosteen Vivo City Review

No birthday celebration is ever complete without a trip to Swensen’s for Ice Cream!

Swensen’s Earle at Vivo City (#02-117)

Molten Chocolate Lava Cake & Banana Split
(I was a tad disappointed at the Molten Chocolate Lava Cake!)
Swensen's Earle Vivo City Molten Chocolate Lava Cake Banana Split

Swensen’s Earle complimentary ice cream cake makes Hiroshi a very happy boy!
Swensen's Earle Vivo City Complimentary Birthday cake

Very spacious restaurant. Reasonably priced, but I was hoping for better service.

Finally a family photo to freeze up this precious moment of you being 9 and a 1/2.
The Queen and Mangosteen Vivo City Hiroshi's Birthday

You’ll grow out of my arms,
but never my heart!

Every child a Leader | Horizon Primary School

When Hiroshi came back from school today, he squealed in excitement telling me that he has something special to show me. After rummaging through his stuffed bag, he proudly fished out a medal. His FIRST medal!
Horizon Primary School

I was pleasantly surprised to see the medal. But, to see the medal being awarded for a Chinese Singing Competition left me completely bewildered.
Horizon Primary School

I vaguely remembered him telling me about this Chinese Singing Competition a while back, but I’ve never in a million years expected him to participate in it!

Well you see, getting Hiroshi to converse in Mandarin is just like putting water and oil together. No matter how hard we try, they’ll never gel! Despite our best efforts, the resistance remains strong.

Even though this medal is only an Award for Participation, it meant a lot to Hiroshi and myself. I am thankful that the school has chosen to not only recognize the top 3 winners, but also of those who had tried and put in the effort.

Everything happens for a reason, and perhaps not being able to get into one of the more prominent school in Punggol area might be just a blessing in disguise for us.

I am glad that Hiroshi is in Horizon Primary School. I am happy about how the school is shaping young minds. Nurturing confidence in individuals, leading them to live their lives responsibly and eventually contributing back to society with joy.

Indeed, with the right guidance, every child can be a leader!

Let’s talk about SEX baby… Let’s talk about the Birds & Bees (Part 2)

Still remember the Sex Talk Blunder I had with Sophia?

So when Hiroshi asked me about SEX the other day,
I paused, thought about it very carefully before replying him.

Hiroshi: Mummy, what is SEX?
Me: What would you like to know about SEX?
Hiroshi: (shows me his student pass) It says SEX M, Does it means I wear M size shirts?
Sex talk with Kids

I swear I could have fallen over and died laughing at his innocence.
But I had to put on a straight face telling him that in this case,
SEX means if you’re a boy or girl, Male or Female.

I was just wondering,
would it cause less confusion
if they used the term gender instead on sex on the student pass?

What do you think?

P.S. If you liked this post,
you might enjoy Rubbing It In, Holiday Plans & Ambition of a Kid.

Living in the World of Excessive Labeling: ADHD

When Hiroshi suffered from a hairline fracture this February, I was allowed to pick him up from the school’s general office. And for the days that I arrived earlier than dismissal time, I’ll read whatever that was left on the magazine racks to pass time.

One of those fateful days, I’ve picked up a nicely illustrated book entitled “I Not Naughty!” by Lim Swee Huat. It turns out that “I Not Naughty” is a comprehensive handbook about ADHD/ADD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder/Attention Deficit Disorders). The book was simple and straight forward. The more I read, the more I thought that symptoms the author was illustrating sounded very much like Hiroshi.

Just to play it safe and to be absolutely sure, I emailed the school’s counselor to voice my concern. She promptly replied and set up an appointment for me to meet a child physiologist and an Occupational Therapist from Reach.

The first appointment with the specialists was long and tedious. We went though a series of extensive questionnaires. Some were really challenging as we ransack our failing memory banks for the required information. It suddenly dawn onto me how quickly my kids are growing. As we were wreaking our poor brains out, the Occupational Therapist gave Hiroshi a quick initial assessment.

A couple of weeks later, we received feedback from the Occupational Therapist suggesting a FULL Assessment to be done on Hiroshi. During the Full Assessment, Hiroshi was required to perform a series of tasks. And there were also observation to his behavior over a number of occasions in classroom activities.

We were recently presented with the final findings, the occupational therapist confirmed Hiroshi’s condition as ADHD. Specifically, Hyperactive-Impulsive Type.

If a child displays at least six of these symptoms,
do get them accessed for ADHD (Hyperactive-Impulsive Type):
(Better safe than sorry. Early intervention always works best.)

-Does not seem to listen when spoken to
-Talking nonstop
-Having trouble doing quiet tasks, such as reading
-Touching and getting into everything
-Running from place to place
-Banging into people or objects
-Acting like he’s “driven by a motor”
-Constantly jumping or climbing — on furniture and other inappropriate places
-Being impatient
-Blurting out comments at inappropriate times
-Interrupting conversations or speaking out of turn
-Having trouble waiting for a turn or standing in line

Part of me wants to wallop in self pity and go into my drama-mama “why me” moments, but yet another part of me was full of anger and extremely upset with myself! How could I have misjudged my son for the past 9 years!

I am feeling awfully sorry about all the screaming and smacking over a condition that even he himself has no control over of. It’s definitely a moment that felt like I’ve failed as a nurturing mom.

Now all I want to know is what can be done to help Hiroshi.

The easiest way out of this situation is medication. But, the specialist’s suggestion was to put that option on hold until we’ve exhausted intervention programs. Hiroshi will be put onto a 8 weeks program. In this program, he will be taught skills to help control his hyperactivity and impulsiveness. We will also be working closely together with his school teachers to implement strategies from the program.

Time to make right what has been wrong.
My Son; Hiroshi is Not Naughty!
Even Mommy herself has wronged you for a terrible 9 years.
I am sorry. I will do better to understand you and help you.
Together, I am sure we will be able to weather through this period.

If you are a parent of an ADHD child, I’ll like to hear your strategies of coping.
If you have natural cures and remedies, I’ll love to hear them too.

But above all,
please just pray for us.
We need God’s wisdom badly!

I’ve got the Most AWESOME looking Kids on Planet Earth!

“It’s a funny thing about mothers and fathers.
Even when their own child is
the most disgusting little blister you could ever imagine,
they still think that he or she is wonderful.”
—Roald Dahl

Can you spot Hiroshi?
Horizon Primary School P3 Reflector Class Photo 2014
Horizon Primary School P3 Reflector Class Photo 2014

3rd row, 4th from the right!
Looks like I am having a John Travolta with the Saturday Night Fever Dance Pose!
Horizon Primary School P3 Reflector Class Photo 2014

Can you spot Sophia?
Horizon Primary School P2 Discoverer Class Photo 2014
Horizon Primary School P1 Discoverer Class Photo 2014

1st row, 4th from the right!
That smile will definitely brighten up any dull days!
Horizon Primary School P1 Discoverer Class Photo 2014

Linking up with Ai Sakura for Wordless Wednesday: