Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Wordful Wednesday - Painting is not just kid's play!

As part of the Singapore Mom Blogger's first anniversary celebration, some of us had a chance to try our hand at painting. Dumpling has been attending Art classes for a while at Heart Studio and being someone who love colours, I have actually expressed my interest in picking up painting and was speaking to the studio too!

Heart Studio hosted 2 groups of mummy bloggers that morning and I was placed with Teacher Syafiq and Teacher Elma where we explored on Van Gogh's Sunflowers. Though I am no stranger to Van Gogh having done a homeschool unit with Dumpling on the famous masters, attempting it on my own all in one morning is an entirely different experience!

Teacher Syafiq (Dumpling's teacher) introducing the theme for the morning and the journey ahead...

You know that you are with a group of blogger mummies when they are ever so ready to smile and ham it up for the camera and when photography takes on to another level...

Teacher Elma (the regular teacher for the 5 - 6YO) guiding us on the very first step - the outline

And it was our cue to start ~ starting with choosing our colour theme

After the outline was done...

I started on the background. Van Gogh is known for his thick and bold strokes where he also layered on paint to create the textured effect and so, I decided to try my hand at layering on. Boy, was it hard work!!! I now have new found respect for Dumpling who was ever so attentive in her classes.

And after about 2 hours, I was done!

What I like a lot about the class was that just like Dumpling's Little Dali journey, there was no teacher to hold on to our hands but instead, the teachers' roles were to guide and at most, demonstrate. I also had free rein in terms of colour choice - something that definitely satisfies the rebel in me as opposed to having to follow a colour scheme strictly. 

I was pretty amazed that even I managed to churn out a fairly decent painting. So I decided to take a quick look around the studio and these are the works of my fellow mummy blogger friends! Gorgeous aren't they?

And here's a group photo of all the talented mummy bloggers! :)

Special thanks to Heart Studio for hosting us that morning. It was loads of fun and was certainly great to have a go at painting my own sunflowers which is now proudly displayed on my bedroom wall! :) 

Heart Studio
101 Soo Chow Walk Singapore 575385
T: 6554 7563


Also linking up with

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tuesday Thoughts - Memoir from yesteryears?

I am not sure if it is old age or that because life just passes in a blur, my memory is just not as good as it used to be. Hence I am a shutterbug and take photos of Dumpling whenever I can so that I have these to look back on fondly. This is also part of the reason of why I blog

More than that, I realised that I am getting sentimental and would have things / videos taken made so that Dumpling to have something to flip / look through once she is of 'age'. 1 of the 2 things I did when I was a SAHM during the early days was to make a 胎毛笔. Traditionally, this is a Chinese calligraphy pen where the  'bristles' of the calligraphy pen is made from the infant's hair and is meant as a keepsake.

That was about 4 years back. I took it out over the weekend and showed it to Dumpling. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the wooden holder and the pen are both nicely preserved. (The cardboard box was a tad tattered though I am not sure if that is Dumpling's doing :p)

I actually did not recall that I got the gentleman to engrave some words on the pen so it was a pleasant 'reminder' to read them all over again.

But more than that, it was a beautiful and poignant moment when I saw the smile lit up on Dumpling's face as she read it and a lump came up in the throat.

Did you have something made as a keepsake too?


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Enormous Turnip Giveaway Results!

Here you go!!! 

Dumpling did the draw... 

And ta da!!!! 

Congratulations to Jasmine and Chuyan Kwek! I will be sending you both an email to put you in contact with the officer in charge from iTheatre! Once again the play details are as below:

Date: 1 June 2013 (Saturday)
Time: 2pm
Duration: Performances 55 minutes including meet and greet
Most suitable for: 3 - 14YO and families
Venue: Alliance Francaise Theatre, Sarkies Road

Tickets are to be collected directly from iTheatre office @ 27 Kerbau Road. Tickets are not exchangeable for cash or for other dates. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Play Learning Tuesday - And Cluck Cluck We Go

As much as I can, we'd always tie our homeschool sessions to either field trips, hands-on experiments or crafts. Last year, I bought a book by Jill Tomlinson as the play 'The Owl Who is Afraid of the Dark' was staged here in Singapore and from the homeschool front, we dissected some owl pellets.

The book that we bought has other stories in it, amongst which one was titled "The Hen Who Wouldn't Give Up". I particularly enjoyed the story - the hen in the story showed much perseverance and great spunk while her adventures filled some of our homeschool evenings with laughter. 

Dumpling asked a great deal of questions on eggs and the life cycle as well as how can a farmer tell if the eggs are fertilised and *gasp* what if the fertilised eggs were picked up by mistake and placed for sale in egg trays. LOL

So, we extended the session to watching some youtube videos (to learn about how to identify fertilized eggs) and some hands on play learning fun with an egg experiment and craft! 

We placed an egg in a container of vinegar and Dumpling witness a chemical reaction - bubbles started appearing on the shell which led to some interesting observations and discussions. 

Comparision of egg after 1/2 day and after 2 days...

Our shell-less egg! Dumpling poked, touched, peered through it and bounced it (it burst after we bounced from a height of about 6").

We also discussed how the egg looked bigger than the others in the same egg tray which were of about the same size as the original 'version' before it was soaked in vinegar. 

She noted that the egg has no more shell and what was left was a membrane (which I introduced using books and activity sheets). This was also when I introduced the concept of Osmosis - how water permeates through the membrane which is possible now because it is shell-less.

In addition to that, we also extended to craft and made our own Marionette! I saw this idea on a FB page and cannot for the life of me, remember where it was from! But it certainly inspired me to create something on our own! 

:: What you need:
1) Twigs
2) Some yarn
3) Toilet rolls! 
4) Duct Tape (I made some cuts, lengthwise into the toilet roll so that the flaps can over lap each other and then taped up the beak)
5) Pipe cleaners (for the neck and legs)
(The Hen below is "wingless" as the paint was still a bit damp and so we couldn't stick them on ;p) 

I hope that this gives you some ideas on more Homelearning Fun! :)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Foodie Fridays - Ramen Bari-Uma

A few weeks ago, after we were done with Dumpling's Speech Therapy sessions, we chanced upon this small and cozy Japanese joint. 

While I am not a pork fan, Dumpling doesn't mind it and loves Ramen so in we went!

A quick look at the menu...

I decided to order the 'best seller' - Ajitama Uma!

Having a Cantonese mum means that the very first thing I try with any soupy dish is the broth! The tonkotsu broth was surprisingly good - it was sweet, flavorful and thick. It was seriously one of the best broth that I have had. 

An egg (Ajitama) was included along with a slice of pork and some slivers of Bamboo shoots

Dumpling ordered on her own set (Kid's Ramen) and the kid's size is around half that of the regular bowl. It had about 3-4 slivers of the bamboo shoots,a small slice of pork and a good serving of corn. The meal comes with a drink (they served her juice) and it goes for a reasonable $7. Dumpling requested for her own egg and so, we added that in for an additional $2. 

If I have to be perfectly honest, it took a lot for me to take a bite of the pork as I am very sensitive to the smell of any pork. Though it had a tad of the smell, what was surprising was how the fats melted right into my mouth almost like meringue! Then I took a closer look at the meat, the menu and then I saw the poster - they are flamed chashu hence the difference! The meat is thickly cut and is scorched on the outside hence the fats do not have the stewed gelatin taste and texture. 

(The top up for more of these melt in your mouth chashu)

Dumpling enjoyed her meal tremendously. Here she is at slurping up her Ajitama! *Proud mama beams on*

And I cannot help but to take a photo of the staff introduction sheet! LOL

19 Tanglin Road #B1-01, Tanglin Shopping Centre

Friday hours 11:30 am–10:00 pm

VeggieTales Lapbook!

I chanced upon VeggieTales quite by 'accident' when Dumpling and I were at the library. I was captivated by the title and the illustration and took a second look. I then saw a post on A Journey Through Learning on the lapbooks that they created on VeggieTales titles and I decided to try it out. To my pleasant surprise, I actually enjoyed it as much as Dumpling!

The title which we picked up was titled Pistachio, the Boy that Woodn't. Dumpling was the first to notice that there was a pun on the word 'woodn't' and laughed about it. We played the DVD as soon as we can. The entire VeggieTales series is based on Christian faith but delivered through a cartoon format and importantly, children are engaged with familiar fairy tales / stories. In this title, it is a tweak of classic tale: Pinocchio.

There was corny humor in the show - Geppetto was renamed as Gelato and of course, Pinocchio as Pistachio. The story started with Gelato carved out a boy named Pistachio who took on the similar adventures as the classic story. But what I liked about the show are the catchy songs (some definitely corny) and the way the story was able to bring a certain biblical message down to a level where it is digestible. The DVD discussed 'obedience' and why we must 'Honour our Father and Mother' through the mishaps that Pistachio faced along the way.

The lapbook elements consisted of pockets of activities around character and traits discussion...

(Overview of some of the activities from the lapbook)

We also had a chance to discuss about the role of parents in Dumpling's life and the lessons which we have taught her. It was a very interesting and enlightening session for me just to hear it from Dumpling's perspective!

Dumpling giving it some serious thoughts before replying and discussing her views 
with me...

And then writing it out... 

Having a think about Gelato and his role in the show and in Pistachio's life... 

We then did some verse reading and discussed the commandment below

Included in the printables pack was a parable told by Gelato which is turned into a sequencing exercise

There are a few more activities from the printables pack which I did not include in this post. Here's a trailer on Pistachio to share:

Interestingly, the DVD did not touch on being truthful which to me, is one of the most obvious topics of discussions. Having said that, Dumpling enjoyed the story and I like that the DVD and the lapbook provided me with a chance to discuss values in an applicable and more importantly, a lighthearted manner with Dumpling. As I am not very much into TV time so we took the opportunity to revisit and read the classic Pinocchio too. We have since there reserved 3 more titles from the library so no prizes for the right guesses as to what we will be doing over the next few weeks. :) 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

HeART Studio Workshop Giveaway!

Sponsored Review & Giveaway!

Dumpling attended a private 1-Day workshop earlier in March this year which was kindly extended to readers of Beanie N Us. The theme was on butterfly and the children had a chance to work with acrylic and oil pastels. Dumpling was of course excited as we actually kept some caterpillars at home some previously and watched the metamorphosis process. For me, I was particularly interested to see how an art piece can be created in just 75mins.

Teacher Syafiq was started with the explanation of the theme for that morning and then went through the basic shapes to help the children create the outline for the painting.

Then the kids worked on the base before detailing the outline...

(Look ma, red hands! While classmate N looks on...) 

After the base was dried (kids used a hairdryer!), they then did the outline and filled in the colours. As usual, Dumpling's choice of colours were from the 'warm' family... 

I was actually very amazed how fast the kids could do these based on just the instructions from teach Syafiq! After the butterfly was painted, the children were then taught to use oil pastels to do the outline and then added on the details / pattern onto the wings 

The part that surprises me the most was how focused the kids were! I particularly love how each child's artwork is so different in terms of colours! :)  

Half done...

And ta da! Her smiley butterfly! LOL

I am excited to share another giveaway by Heart Studio this June holidays for the 3 - 4YO! 

1) Painting and drawing techniques of Sunflowers (Giveaway of 1 class worth $75)
Students will learn to draw and paint on canvas. The lesson is a combination of colour exploration and line work which also allows the child to use their creative juices in the addition of details to their work. 

(Source: Heart Studio)

2) Robot Sculpture Creation (Giveaway of 1 class worth $65) 
Students will get to learn unique ways of handling the modelling clay to create sculptures of Robots.  The use of modeling clay helps to enhance the child fine motor skills through techniques like coiling, pinching and rolling.

Little Masters Workshop details
Age Group: 3 - 4YO
Workshop Dates: 10 June & 13 June (1 class each)
Class Duration: Approx. 2hours
Time slot: as below schedule


Do you have an older child? Hop over to mummy blogger friend DinoMama who is doing a giveaway for kids who are 7YO and above

Heart Studio LLP
101 Soo Chow Walk Singapore 575385
T: 6554 7563

Getting there:

Parking Info:
Nearest Parking Facilities is at Thomson Plaza.
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