Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thankful for "kid-friendly" stores :)

I went shopping with Ben at Shangrila yesterday.  I was thinking of buying a new pair of shoes for the weddings we will be attending in the coming weeks.  This is not easy when I have an active pre-schooler along with me.  I was about to go inside one of the first stores I saw when the guard of that store signaled that we couldn't bring along the food that Ben was eating. I respected the store's rule and walked further along. We came across another store where I saw a pair of shoes that I was interested in. The store was playing Rihanna's Diamonds which was a song familiar to Ben so he went inside.  The clerk was quite accomodating.  He didn't mind that Ben was eating.  He even gave in to Ben's request to play Diamonds again (for about 4 times) so that he can sing along with the song.  That way, I was able to shop properly for a few minutes.  Thankfully, the pair of shoes that I liked had my size and was able to buy them.

What made me happy giving that store a sale was the way the clerk handled Ben.  They didn't sell items for kids but I appreciated the way he was patient with him.  It was the mommy break I needed during an overwhelming day.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Behind the scenes of the twins birthday party :)

It has been almost a month since the twins turned one and looking at the photos from that day still makes me smile.  It's really nice seeing the happy faces of family and friends who took time out of their busy schedule to celebrate with us.  Here are some highlights that I'd like to share with everyone

Party Perks did a great job in organizing the event.  They took care of booking the entertainers who were flexible with our schedule.  They also helped us figure out a theme for the event.  I wanted something "girly" but not too feminine.  We came up with shabby chic which was quite lovely.  The decorations were very nice and detailed, from the floating plastic floral balls, to the fresh flowers and napkins in the center pieces.  And it seems that the guests like them too because they were all wiped out by the end of the party, hehe! I love the photo frames with the twins' photos. 

Speaking of photos, what made the party extra special was having a wonderful photographer.  Our photographer was Stanley Ong.  He already took our family photos in the past (like the ones we had in the centerpieces) so he already knows what strategies to use to make our kids smile.  I love the candid photos of the kids having fun at the party.  Bry and I were quite busy moving around that it was through the photos that we saw what was going on behind the scenes.

Of course, the party would not be complete without the Infinity by Memory Charms photo booth.  Thank you, a-ku JP and Ninong Bin for making the booth extra special for the twins.  It was nice seeing the guests upload their photos from the booth when they reach home.  I should have assigned a hashtag for the event!

Oh, and If you guys are wondering where we got the souvenir instafans, we booked them via booths republic.  They seem to be a hit for both kids and adults :) Look them up in Facebook.  They have other products as well. 

Last but certainly not least, a special thanks to Father Joel Liwanag, SJ for taking the time to baptize the twins.  Father Joel is a recently ordained Jesuit who was a classmate of mine and Bry's during our college days.  We were even groupmates in some of our projects.  It's such a blessing that the girls were baptized by someone who we personally know.  

We thank again everyone who joined us on that special day.  Hope you had fun :)

PS.  Our food was catered by Via Mare and the lechon was by Leonardos.  Bry and I were grateful for the good service and pleasant transaction.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Ben and DASH Chinese Summer Camp

This summer, I enrolled Ben in the DASH Chinese Summer Camp to keep him busy while he waits for the summer program in Explorations to start.  I was both excited and nervous.  I've been wanting him to try DASH out since last year.  I was not sure how he'll deal with being in a new school but my goal this summer was to give him more exposure to the Chinese language so I went ahead with it.

The DASH Chinese Summer Camp program is scheduled in two-week intervals.  It's Mondays-Fridays, 9am-12nn, with a combination of learning Chinese conversations, cultural activities, and arts & crafts / cooking.  The teachers use mandarin as their main mode of instruction.  They call the students by their Chinese names (if they have them) but the yayas who assist the teachers would talk to the kids in Tagalog and English.  I think this set-up is okay.  At first, Ben didn't like me dropping him of to school.  He didn't like the idea that the other students were bigger than him.  (The program is for ages 4-7 so he was one of the youngest.  He would also tell me that he does not understand what the teachers are saying.  However, I find him not wanting to leave the school whenever I pick him up which I take as a good sign.  I think it's good that he gets to interact with older kids and try to adjust to new surroundings since he will be moving on to big school next year.  

I promised Ben that they will learn to make dumplings at class.  That was what got him going to class during the first few days.  Finally, during their second week , they go to cook them,  Yehey!  I like that they have arts and crafts every day and they brought it home with them.  It made me feel that they did something productive during the day.  Also, during one of those days when I was asking myself if Ben actually getting more familiar with the language, he got a blue cup and said "lan se".  It made my day!!!!  

It was (and  still) an effort to bring Ben to school,  Since DASH's main branch is in New Manila (the only one that offers this kind of camp),  we had to adjust his schedule.  I'm glad I decided to enroll him though :)  I'm just a bit sad that some of the friends he made during the past two weeks aren't around for the next two weeks because they had other plans (which means another adjustment for Ben, sigh).  Anyways, I'm now thinking how we can be more consistent in making him familiar with the Chinese language throughout the next school year and most especially at home, wish us luck!.

For more information about DASH Chinese School.  go to their website.

How about you? What are your summer plans? :)