Mid Autumn Lights at Chinatown

It is easy to get caught in the rut of daily life and forget to appreciate the little happiness and beautiful things that are happening around us. One day last week, I heard my colleagues discussing this year’s Chinatown decorations for the mid autumn festival (中秋节) and the reviews were pretty good. I immediately sent my husband a message and asked if he would like to bring Ted there.

Never mind that we had leftover dinner from the night before to finish, never mind that the floor at home is covered in toys and never mind the piles of dirty laundry that had to be washed. Once in a while (and sometimes every day for a while), we will decide to leave everything behind and go and do something a little different.


The lights were really prettier than what you can see from the pictures, and there were many passers-by who would stop for a picture here and there.


We walked along the road where the decorations were lit up, and made our way to a little overhead bridge.


From the bridge, you can look down and see the entire street of lights from above. It was really pretty and I think Ted rather liked it.


We would have taken a longer stroll, but unfortunately, it started drizzling and we were forced to make our way home. The little street of shops was also bustling with activity and there were many shops selling colourful lanterns, traditional ones and electronic ones alike.



Sometimes I feel really happy that Ted is all grown up, and his meal options are not limited to pureed vegetables and porridge. On a whim, we can just decide to go somewhere for dinner after work and then take a nice family stroll together.


Toddler in a Restaurant: Pasta De Waraku

After our little trip to KK Hospital, we hopped onto a shuttle bus that brought us to Novena Square. We settled for Pasta De Waraku, which was conveniently located on the first floor of the Novena Square 2. It was a weekday afternoon and they had some lunch time promotion going on.

The manager directed us to a table but was slow in bringing us the baby chair so Ted helped himself.

For someone who had complained of pain in his right arm just half an hour ago, he did pretty well in dragging the chair out.


I ordered the corn and tuna pasta, thinking it sounded like a good combination of fish and some kind of vegetable for the baby. It was unfortunately, dry and very salty. I ended up eating most of it myself.



This was the mentaiko tofu. Ted loves tofu and can usually finish this sort of portion all by himself but this time he only had 1/4 of it. I wasn’t sure if mentaiko was a good meal option for a 2-year old and did not offer him any.


I also pampered myself with a little side dish of sliced pork belly in Vietnamese sauce. It was the “National Day Special” at only $5.90 and the manager was marketing it strongly to the table next to us. It happened that they were also the only other patrons in the restaurant.

The pork was dry and charred and the sauce very salty. I believe they were trying to sell the tastiness of the sauce. It was tasty, no doubt, and if drizzled sparingly, it would have made a good accompaniment to nicely grilled pork belly.


Ted was still using only his left hand to eat and hold items and it was fun to watch him eat. Every now and then he would look at his right hand, as if contemplating if he should use it, and then decide to use his left hand instead. He ate very little, although he did most of the eating himself. The waiter serving our table was very impressed and came over to ask me his age.


I think Ted must have been really tired after our very long day. He felt asleep at the table and the staff were kind enough to let him lay on the couch and sleep for about 45 minutes before I woke him up to take him home.

It wasn’t a good meal experience at all, and I probably would never bring Ted back. I probably should have guessed from the fact that we were the very first patrons at about 12 pm, which is the busy lunch period, and that very few people came in after us. The staff were friendly, though, but nobody visits a restaurant just because of good service.


~ * ~ * ~ Toddler Experience Rating ~ * ~ * ~

Ambience: Casual, not noisy
Food: Salty, dry, Ted only had a little spaghetti
Recommended order for toddlers: If you really have to.. perhaps something from the kids menu
Children’s set menu: The usual tomato-based pasta
Extras: Staff was very friendly

Leftie for a week

Ted had his right arm in a cast for week and that week was a crazy one, mainly because he kept crying for us to remove it and we had to help him with a lot of simple activities such as eating and changing.

The first 2 days were especially traumatising for us because he would point to the cast and wail with a pitiful voice “I don’t want this, Mama. Take it out, Mama.” And he would do that every single time he wanted to do something with his right hand and found his arm in a hard uncomfortable cast.

Over the next few days, however, he learnt to get really comfortable with using his left hand and he was starting to remove his shoes and even put on his socks with just his left hand.

In any case, I was really excited when the day of our appointment with the doctor to remove the cast came. The cast was starting to emit a mild unpleasant odour which I suspect came from the bandages which might have caught some moisture during bath times despite our efforts to keep them under a plastic wrap.

We took a slow leisurely walk to the MRT station since we had time to spare.


We stopped once in a while to disturb the mimosa plants which fascinated him and occasionally raced each other to the next lamp post.


On the MRT, Ted was readily offered a seat. I rejected the first 2 offers politely but it seemed every time someone looked up from their phone and saw the poor boy in a cast, they jumped straight out of their seat for him. In the end I accepted the offer of a kind Indian man who proceeded to high-five him for the rest of the journey.

We alighted an Little India MRT station and took a bus for the distance of a bus stop to KK Hospital.


Ted thoroughly enjoys the experience of taking public transport because there are so many things to see and ever so often a kindly old lady will try to start a conversation with him. I think he enjoys the attention and the interaction he gets on public transport.

The experience at the hospital lasted more than an hour, most of which was just waiting around.

When the doctor was done, Ted still complained of pain in his arm. The doctors advice was to monitor him for a few days and bring him back if the pain is persistent or is causing extreme discomfort. I put his arm in a sling to ease the pressure on his arm and a nurse offered him a balloon.


On the way out, he kept telling me “My arm is painful. It’s not correct. It’s not correct, Mama.”

He forgot about it as soon as I put him on a little panda and took him around on a ride around the KK Hospital lobby. 🙂


Toddler in a Restaurant: A for Arbite

After watching Hansel and Gretel, we chanced past this little restaurant located at 28 Aliwal Street. We decided to pop in for lunch.

With Ted in tow, we try to avoid spicy food, food cooked with wine and meats that might be tough to chew. That usually narrows down the options we have on the menu quite significantly.

There is a kids’ menu with the usual kids’ favourites such as tomato-based pasta, nuggets and fries. We didn’t want to order a dish just for him because half the time, the entire dish goes to waste.

This was Papa entertaining the little boy with the paper critters we got from the play we watched earlier while I perused the menu.




We decided to go for the Duck Confit and the Pan Seared Seabass.

The duck confit came with 2 large slices of baked pumkin and the duck meat was tender. These days, I judge food by how much of it Ted consumes and in this case, Ted had a lot of the duck, which means I am very likely to come back here.




Ted picked up a piece of vegetable and then decided that it was too much trouble to chew.


The pan seared seabass was surprisingly good. Fish tends to be boring and the only reason we ordered it was because we wanted to have a variety of choices between meat, fish and vegetables. Ted had both slices of fish almost all to himself. He kept asking for more, which was a big bonus for us.

The gravy was not salty and came with plenty of vegetables, which Ted also enjoyed.


I ordered for myself the summer pear nectar which tasted like pear blended with a little bit of honey. The texture was smooth and I really enjoyed it. The waitress was not able to tell me exactly what went into it and I decided not to offer it to Ted.


All in all, I think Ted rather enjoyed the experience. Not only did he finish an adult portion of fish, he also got to play with some lego bricks that the staff offers to children while they wait for their food to be served.


~ * ~ * ~ Toddler Experience Rating ~ * ~ * ~

Ambience: Casual, not noisy
Food: Tasty, Ted polished up a full adult portion
Recommended order for toddlers: Pan Seared Seabass – plenty of vegetables!
Children’s set menu: The usual tomato-based pasta, nuggets, fries
Extras: Toys such as puzzles and lego are offered to children awaiting their food

Visiting the National Stadium

The National Stadium was open to the public on National Day weekend and we decided to go and have a look. It looked smaller on the inside than I imagined it would be, having driven past the Stadium so many times on the road.

I loved the fact that the seats were red and white.





There were big signs declaring Singapore’s 49th National Day all around.



There is also a small mall (Kallang Wave Mall) right beside the Stadium. We took a short walk inside and it was just like a regular neighbourhood mall with mid-range restaurants and fashion shops. There was also a large FairPriceXtra on the first floor, which was probably the only kind of shop a mother like me would patronise.

Look at us, all dressed in red for the day 🙂


Big Words

Ted is really starting to talk and it amazes us how much he is learning. We have to be really careful about what we say around him now. Even his teachers are surprised by how much he understands and they tell us that sometimes they switch to speaking in Cantonese so that he doesn’t pick up what they are discussing.

Just yesterday in the car…

Me: *singing the chorus of a song* Chan Mali Chan Hoi Hoi, Chan Mali Chan..
Ted: Mama, can you start from the beginning?

We were surprised he knew the word “beginning”.

Last week at home…

Me: Ted, what are you doing?
Ted: I am biting the pillow. Then I will confiscate it.

I confiscate all the things that he puts into his mouth that he’s not supposed to.

And not too long ago…

Me: Ted, can you sit on this giraffe? *point to lego giraffe I just built*
Ted: No, I’m too young. I’m 2 years old.

The vocabulary and logic of a 2 year old!

Hansel and Gretel

We decided that it was time to start getting Ted interested in the arts and randomly signed up for a play. When I say random, it means I happened to be waiting for my takeaway meal right outside a sistic counter and I bought 3 tickets or a play on a pamphlet i randomly picked up because I thought Ted might enjoy it.



The tickets were inexpensive at only $20 each. There is only one category of tickets and because we only bought them a couple of days before the show, we did not get the best seats.



It was my first time to the Aliwal Arts Centre and the place was surprisingly small, although I should have expected it, judging from the ticket size and the seating plan. The seats were really just plastic chairs arranged in rows with printed number labels stuck on.

The next time I’m here I’ll remember to choose the front seats even if they are at the side. The hall is so small that it doesn’t really matter how far from the centre you sit.


Ted was more excited before the play than during it. We thought it was a great idea that they gave out those animal cutouts because it helped to entertain the little children before the play started.



The play/musical itself was rather boring as the stage was small so there was really no chance for a change of setting or clothes. To be fair, the target age group was 3 years to the early teens and the 3 of us fell outside that range. The storyline was a little too difficult for a 2 year old to grasp and Ted kept asking us “What is that?” when random animal puppets appeared on the stage.

It was a short play that lasted only 35 minutes which I think is ideal for the age group they are targeting. It was also good for us because I think Ted was starting to get restless and we (the adults) were starting to get bored.

I think for a $20 per ticket production, it was pretty good and to be honest I only wanted to test out Ted’s interest in watching stage productions. I do believe he’s ready for bigger and better ones 🙂