Kiki & Lala

Archive for the ‘Kid Stuff’ Category

So we were in HK last week for some R and R and brought along the two older kids. It was Mikel’s second time there though in many ways it was his first – his first with a more mature consciousness. Last time, he was two and a half so it didn’t count too much.

If you recall, he failed my “travel test” two years ago with his getting frightened by ordinary street noises and tantrums. Thankfully, this time at age four, he passed with flying colors. We can take him just about anywhere! He hardly complained. If he was tired he would give a whiney little, “Can we go back to the holltell??” – and that was it. Amazing! What a difference two years can make.

The cutest thing in Disneyland was when he started to get scared as we boarded the boat for It’s A Small World. He was clinging to me like a little country mouse.
Mikel: Mom… Can you pottect me?
Lala: Protect you? From what? We’re in It’s A Small World!
Mikel: From the cocodile…!

Where did all the “R”s go?

Then this super sweet conversation a few nights later. We had come from dinner and were all tired except my super shopper husband who wanted to roam around Tsim Sha Tsui till the stores closed. So I said I was going to take the kids up to the “holltell” so we could all rest. But of course, Mikel didn’t want to part ways from his dad so Luigi told him, “You need to take a bath and rest. You also need to protect Mommy, OK?”. And somehow after that we were on our way back to our hotel but I soon realized Mikel was still a bit upset and confused.

Mikel: Why Pappy wants to go shopping still?
Lala: Never mind. Let him be OK. Besides, if you stay with him, you’ll just get tired.
Mikel: But… But… Who I pottect you from??


So I recently asked a veteran mother of many (who shall remain nameless!) for tips on raising a sizable family. And here’s what she came up with almost immediately:

1. Grow up with them.
2. Scream as much as you can – won’t harm them a bit – look at my children.
3. Stay away from Dr. Spock.
4. Let them talk as much as they can – just be very sure you have the last say – most of the time they end having the last say, most specially when they get older and you get much older
5. Love them to death – this can kill you but they’ll survive.

Gotta love her!

As you know, my not-so-little girl now knows about the birds and the bees. I kept it as simple as possible but I recently realized I was still using baby words to describe bodily parts.

Rocio is quite the Instagram fanatic. Two days ago, she “liked” a picture her older cousin had posted. It was a doodle of a stick figure man pointing at a penis (not his own) and the word “penis” itself floating somewhere on the page.

Lala: Rocio, why did you like this?
Rocio: I thought it was cute…
Lala: Do you know what it is?
Rocio: It’s a man pointing at a key or something…
Lala: There’s a word here… can you read it?
Rocio: (peers over to iPhone)… peen…uhs…?
Lala: Right! Do you know what a penis is?
Rocio: No.
Lala: It’s the scientific word for a guys’ birdie, OK? You need to know that.
Rocio: OK
Lala: And the scientific name for a girl’s poochie is “vagina”, OK?
Rocio: Mmhhhmm…
Lala: OK, so what’s the scientific name for a guy’s birdie?
Rocio: Penis?
Lala: Good! And what’s the scientific name for a girl’s poochie?
Rocio: (pauses and thinks) Uhm… I forgot… a puh-jankha?

I was laugh-crying my eyes out!!!

Now my first born knows all about them… the birds and the bees.
She’d been asking many questions the past few weeks and worse, had gathered lots of misinformation. So I decided it was time for the talk lest she get even more confused.

I bought this book

several years ago when I got pregnant with Mikel just in case his sister would ask where he came from. She didn’t. Then when I got pregnant for the 3rd time she asked and was satisfied with “The mommy and the daddy have to pray really hard and ask for a baby”.

But this week, the book needed to be taken out of mothballs. It’s basic and cute and funny and cartoony which was a big help but I never realized how uncomfortable it would be to talk to my own child about this. It’s right up there with talking to your parents about it. I’m not kidding!

She took it well. Some suppressed laughter and squealing on her part but all in all she took it like a big girl. She just said, “But that’s so weird…” So I told her yes, it sounds weird but it’s not at all. It’s very normal and natural and if people didn’t do this, there would be no more people.

I also made her swear not to tell other kids about this new information because only their parents can decide if they’re ready to know or not. And I could tell afterwards that she felt empowered by this new knowledge for “big kids” only. I can only hope…

The fact is, it’s not easy being a Waldorf parent. While you may not have to deal with the never ending stream of homework and tests, you have worry of a different sort.

There is the seemingly impossible balance to strike between keeping them kids in this too fast-changing world without keeping them too naive, making things as healthy and natural as possible while maintaining a certain level of convenience (for lack of a better word… I don’t even know what word I’m looking for!)

My kids are loving it at Waldorf at the moment and I am ever so thankful for that. But no doubt, I am often beset by nagging worries and questions. “Am I stunting their intellectual development? How will they stack up against other kids from traditional schools? Why isn’t she reading like a fiend the way I was at her age? Don’t they need a little more pressure?”

As much as I despise cookie cutter schools, they ARE still the norm around here. And Steiner Education in the country is still in its infancy. I’d like to see a bigger sample of graduates and see how they fare in “the real world” – whatever the heck that means!

So in the midst of thinking and over-thinking the education I’ve chosen for my kids, it’s comforting to come across a video like this where teachers and graduates (one from Harvard – yaaay!) talk quite passionately about being in a Waldorf school. Let me know what you think, Kiki.

I recently had time to kill before hosting an event at the Ayala Museum. Fortunately, there was a charming little exhibit to keep me entertained.

Turns out the group Ilustrador Ng Kabataan (INK) which churns out beautiful images for Filipino children’s books has turned 20 and some of the group’s best works were on display.

How inviting is this crisp, contrasting space?

I took some snaps of the works that I just liked and pieces that reminded me of something or someone.

I liked this because I’m a sucker for anything that’s mother-and-child.

Just had to take this for my Star Wars-crazy daughter.

This reminded me of when we sent the baby turtles into the ocean in Bataan when you visited last year.

Who doesn’t love a Pinoy Christmas?

A different medium:

Wooden block animals:

And my fave installation in the exhibit. I think it was called “making roads to each other”. Made me think of us… awww… Needed to take several pictures for you to see what’s going on here.

Are you touched?

Last year I was fortunate enough to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade upclose.   This year, I got to watch the balloons being inflated and made ready for the following day’s festivities.   I found out that the balloon inflation was done literally next door to me so I walked over to see what the fuss was all about.   Apparently it was worth the fuss.  Check it out.

Again, please pardon the grainy photos.  I still don’t have a camera so these photos came out of my Blackberry (that must also be replaced).  However, I have a feeling Santa Clause will gift me with a camera this Christmas.  After all, I’ve been a good girl…but I digress!

Here is Kool Aid inflated and ready to go…

 …This is the backside of the Aflac Duck.  He’s a popular mascot for the insurance company Aflac.

Here is a popular cat who’s name escapes me.  I’ll just call him creepy cat.  As you can see, he is lying on his side and restrained by net so he doesn’t fly up up and away!

This next one, your son will love or fear…Buzz Lightyear!   I know he is hard to make out because he is faced down, lying on his belly.   Poor buzz :(


What’s a thanksgiving event without a pumpkin?

Poor Hello Kitty is forced to lie on her belly all night.

Then there was Spidey!

I tried to take a shot of Ronald Mcdonald but only managed to take a shot of his boot.

I had a great time, I felt like a child again driving passed the Anson’s building to watch the Christmas figures.  Remember that?  This was a wonderful way to kick off the holiday.  Since I moved here, this was the first time I felt Christmas this early.   It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Here are some recent conversations I’ve had with my eight year old.

While waiting for the driver to pick us up at the mall.
Rocio: Mom, how did we ever survive taking taxis?
Lala: You mean like in Singapore or HK?
Rocio: Yeah! It was so expensive.
Lala: Well, don’t think you ride the car here for free. I have to continuously pay for the gas, the toll, the driver and even the bank every month because I borrowed money to buy the car.
Rocio: So it’s like you pay everyday?
Lala: Of course…
Rocio: Oh my god… I would never survive being an adult!!
Lala: (smiles wisely) Oh you will…

This is what happens when you try to teach your kid to be thrifty when shopping.
Rocio: I think our house should have a big space to run around and a bamboo pole I can practice climbing.
Lala: Umm… OK… but I don’t plan on building a very big house.
Rocio: Why not?
Lala: Well, the bigger the house, the more expensive it’ll be.
Rocio: Yes, I know. But what if you got it like on sale?

I love how kids see possibility more than limitation.
We were walking out of church and some guy in the parking lot in a white Starex threw a piece of scrunched up paper out his window.
Lala: Nice! That guy just littered.
Rocio: I know it’s so bad. It’s so dirty. Why do people do that?
Lala: Because they’re lazy and not properly educated.
Rocio: Well, if I were to rule the Philippines, the first thing I would do is teach people that it’s bad to litter. Look at Singapore, they’re smaller than us but they’re so clean and the people are disciplined. It’s embarrassing!
Lala: True but you need to realize a smaller country is also easier to manage than a bigger one. Get it?
Rocio: Yes, Mom… But then I could make it like the States which is way bigger than the Philippines and still people there don’t litter so much.
Lala: (silent thought bubble) Damn she’s good.

I wanted to share with you (and our 5 other readers) the shots I took of our precious little people (Pitufos!) during my quick- -as-lightning trip home.

Ate the Poser…

With Kim fighting over that bloody guitar

Presenting The Pitufettes!

Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar??!!

Nad and Talia in their pretty party dresses

Kelly With Hot Mommy Lala

Frame by frame shots of Talia kissing her BFF Kelly!


Finally, the Pitufos with Papa Pitufo sans Kelly

I miss them terribly :(

Looks like the unico ijo is only just beginning to show his true naughtiness. This week alone, he dipped his hand in the toilet bowl before his sister had a chance to flush and decided to feel for himself what she left in there (“Whadees?”)

Yesterday, after not quite making it to the toilet in time to pee, he laughed and laughed. I then instructed (substitute) Yaya Perla to wash him down in the shower. A few minutes later I hear him screaming/crying so I go to their room to investigate and Perla is standing sheepishly by the sink and not the shower. Upon inquiring why the heck she was there and not in the shower she said, “Eh ayaw niyang umalis. Sabi ko tapos na pero paglumapit ako…” (He doesn’t want to get out. I told him he was done but when I go near him…) And just then I see the sprays of water from the telephone shower aimed quite accurately at Perla and there emerges Dennis The Menace him in all his glory, trying to keep the Yaya at bay.

Today, during his nap with LittleTwinNana, she actually fell asleep ahead of him. Last she remembers he was in bed, talking to himself laughing a little. She nodded off woke up a few minutes later with him still lying there awake so she didn’t let on that she was watching him. He was picking his nose, examined it and popped it in his mouth!!!

I’ve also realized my son knows his limits when it comes to his speech development. I’ve come to use his passion for cars to increase his vocab. And it works… sort of. This was us on the road recently.

Mikel: (points to a car like mine) Datt Mommy car!
Lala: Yes! Can you say Ford?
Mikel: Ford… (points to car like his dad’s) Datt Pappy car!
Lala: Yes! Can you say Honda?
Mikel: Honda… (points to car like his grandmother’s) Datt Mama Dada car!
Lala: Yes! Can you say Mitsubushi?
Mikel: … NO!

And lastly, this happened just yesterday. He was expressing his love for F1 racing as we went downstairs to the playroom.

Mikel: F1! F1! F1!
Rocio: Yes, we know… you like F1.
Mikel: I habba shurrt!
Rocio: No you don’t.
Mikel: I show you… (goes to his drawer and pulls out his fave basketball jersey)

Lala: Mik, that shirt doesn’t say F1. It says Cebuana.
Mikel: Eet F1!
Lala: It’s says Cebuana.
Mikel: Eet Effuana!


Tulong Para Sa Rizal

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 34 other followers


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 34 other followers