Wednesday, December 23, 2009

All the Time in the World

So much has been said about not having enough time and that life is short. Watching 2012 is certainly a consolation!

While vacation is coming to an end soon for most kids, it only began about 2 weeks ago for SW who attends full-day childcare. Although his school is still on until 31st December, I decided to let SW take the last 2 weeks off, enjoying the privileges of having more time to himself.

Having both kids at home during the day means I will be the only one without a vacation and loosing the weight I've been trying hard to gain. But putting the priorities right is important - so I made it a point to take leave too by staying away from my computer and sitting down with the kids - even it means watching Winx!

Nearly every other day of the year, we have to get up early, rush to get everything done within the shortest time possible, following a time-table that is set for us or one we've set for ourselves whilst being as productive as we can. I wonder - if Albert Einstein had led a life like ours, would he have had the opportunity to observe how light reflects and refracts while he sat with his sister, looking out into the lake? Would Galileo have had a minute to observe how a ceiling lamp swings back & forth and measured it against his own pulse?

"Mommy, do I have to go to school tomorrow?" SW has been asking me everyday since the start of his precious 2 weeks.

"Mommy, why don't we take the stairs instead?" SW liked to ask me when the lift took ages to land on our floor when we were running short of time. At the start of his holiday, I gave him the privilege of time to understand why by allowing him to climb the 11 flight of steps Up.

Kids have their special moments when it comes to sharing their thoughts. I appreciate having the time to listen and answer his questions at breakfast without having to worry about the school bus and at supper without having to rush him off to bed for school the next day.

HM and I aren't the happiest person to have SW at home. Being born with sibling makes CH naturally more sociable than her brother, and is in more need of attention. Doing things with her brother makes her happy and more settled, somehow. Although she enjoys dabbling paints with me, doing it with her brother is more fun. So I gave them the time in the world to do the things they want minus my nagging.

Taking time to paint a clay magnet the way they want it - as the saying goes - "Ya can't rush art!" (from Toy Story)

Last night, SW asked me again, "Mommy, do I have to go to school tomorrow?" When I said no, he continued, "When I wake up tomorrow morning, can you tell me I have no school so I can go back to sleep?"

I know exactly how that feels, my dear child. To have all the time in the world to do what you want and to rest enough...

As the year comes to an end, here's wishing everyone:

All the Time in the World
to do what you want to do and
to have the rest that you truly deserve!
Happy, Happy New Year!

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Power of Letting Go

It is amazing how when you finally let go of something , better things come along.

After decades of working in the same company, Cousin Angeline decided to step out of her comfort zone. The new journey provided her with inner peace and gave root to a new hobby - balloon sculpting.

I never knew what balloons could do until I saw the pictures she posted in her Facebook. [I've added images of her works related to Christmas]

"I started out making simple ones like poodles after watching a clown at it in a shopping centre. After some time, I got tired of making the same ones, so I decided to take up a two-day training at a local community centre and learnt the basics. From there, it became easier to pick up other designs from books."

"How long does it take for you to memorize a design?" Cousin Angeline obviously wasn't referring to any books as she worked on the Santa Claus for CH.

"On average, I'd do twice of the same design with reference. Thereafter, I'd usually be able to remember the steps".

We gathered at mom's place so our kids could play together during the vacation. I know CH likes balloons, but I was surprised she stood to watch till the sculptures were completed. Watching Cousin Angeline at work, you realize balloon sculpting takes passion, patience, and creativity, a lot like any other form of art. Uniquely though, because of their short life span - up to 7 days, these works are meant to be given away. Hence, above all else, you need to have the love of giving. For the kids, they have to learn to accept that unlike other toys, you can neither keep nor collect them...

New prospects are opening up for Angeline, currently a stay-home mom, for teaching balloon sculpting, concert decorations & other events, social work...

Amazing isn't it? The joy of giving up a job and finding a life! Merry Christmas, everyone!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Star Drapes

The festives drape is up! There had been much trial and error as it was my first attempt at making one. I've added some small twin golden bells that go 'cling, cling' when we walk pass the drapes. That delighted the kids. They now enjoy running back and forth it, making continuous tingling sound.

There was another design which I've been wanting to make. An accessories shop at Tampines Mall uses it as their window dressing, and I was drawn to it. I decided to make it for my sister who hangs a short drape at her kitchen door, and its rings were also rusty.

I came across similar materials at Daiso, but when I went back to get them after completing my star drapes, they have run out of pink, which was the initial colour I wanted to use. Fortunately, there were 2 packs of purple stuffed in a corner, which didn't look too bad either. Not to disappoint her 3 the kids, I've also added jingle bells on the sides.

"You can remove it after christmas..." I began as I started to remove the old one. I didn't want her to feel obligated to put it up, but she stopped me.

"Don't worry, it's going to stay there!"

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Festive Drapes

It's about time I change my green clover felt drapes. The rings are rusty and some of the pieces are coming off from the kids' tugging. With the festive period approaching, what better time to source for materials!

After about an hour's browse at Daiso, I finally found 2 leftover packs of Red Felt Stars to my liking. They were hooked up high against the wall near the checkout. Got a friendly young assistant to help me using a tall ladder. It was worth the hassle. The red stars are good as I could keep them through Chinese New Year, which will fall on 14th February next year.

We don't have a family tradition of putting up Christmas tree and decorations, but those sparkling, shinny stuff are just so inviting they spell festivities! Working on my drapes gives me a good excuse to use some of these decorations...happy, happy, happy...

The red perforated stars came in 3s which would be too sparse on the drapes. I decided to get some felt sheets to work on additional stars - felts because my drapes are hung near my doorway, sort of like a divider between the doorway and the living room. They won't scratch your skin when you pass them by.

The extra stars I am sewing. The dual colours gives a contrast against my mahogany main door.

CH draws me standing on a stool working on the drapes. I like that heart she has added. And where is that kitty from...?