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About Aranel & Alatariel

Met in 1996..Gotten together in 1997..
Engaged in 2006..Married in 2007..
Basking in marital bliss..
Welcomed Baby Auni into our lives on 150708..
Blessed and in bliss..Alhamdulillah.. :)

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    Tuesday, April 13, 2010
    Its April already!!!

    Just celebrated lil sis's bdae with a BIG bang..Awesome timing too as she just started her 6 mth attachment today.. :))

    3 more months till my adorable Auni turns 2..*gasp* Turning 2 already?!! Time just passed sooo fast!! Don't grow up too quickly, my darling.. :(

    Some of u who are connected to me via FB would know that I have started my Easter Break last Wed..So this was what I was up to.. :)

    Wed: Go to Funan, get lil sis's polaroid camera(her bdae gift!)
    Thurs: Go Batam, enjoy a well-deserved massage and I really missed Auni terribly as its e first time she's being left behind..What are e odds of getting a masseuse who is named Aunil?? Ahahaha!! I was speechless when I heard her name, I tell ya..
    Fri: Husband took last min leave cos he was so stressed at work that he needed to chill..Went for a sleepover @ missy sis's plc..Some of us swam..All of us bowled..It was awesome..
    Sat: From missy sis's plc, we went to Sentosa for my abah's company event..Mainly, we went there to officially celebrate lil sis's bdae(abah got a cool room and we partayyyeedd.. :P) cos her bdae fell on a weekday and we had to wait for Sat to celebrate..Party was awesome..Bdae girl was grinning from ear to ear thru-out which was all that mattered.. :)
    Sun: Rested @ hm..Enjoyed some quality famiily time, which is rare for us..

    So, have I been busy or whaaatt??!

    I got to make full use of my holidays, u know! They are NOT plenty(unlike some are led to believe)..

    So what did I do TODAY??

    I went to recce schools for Auni!

    My abah was free..Mum joined us for the first school and then, she was busy with lots of things, which is one of e main reasons why I had to look for schools for Auni.. :(

    In total, I went to recce 4 schools for Auni..Just to make this clear, I only intend to send Auni to school, earliest next year, 2011.. :)

    3 were CCs(childcare centres) and 1 was a kindergarten..

    I can tell u that it feels weird, going to such places as a parent, and not as a potential employee..None of them knew of my qualifications(which is awesome) so they took me as an ordinary parent enquiring..Little did they know that they were being assessed, based on the cleanliness, the curriculum or u can call it routine(actually all are about the same), how pleasant the teachers are(some are plain snotty), location(very impt!!) and basically the overall feel of the centre..

    What I meant by overall feel of the centre is when I go to a centre, I NEED to feel comfortable..I NEED to feel the love for children from the teachers..Hey, I will be paying hard-earned money to send my lil girl to that centre..Why should I send my lil girl to a place that doesn't feel homey and where the environment suggests lots of teacher-directed activities?

    So lets get cracking!!

    :::::Centre 1:::::
    Cleanliness: 5 out of 5 apples
    It just opened last March, so it is v.clean..
    Too white(white walls everywhere!!) for my liking..
    A little too clean..I need to see some mess!! It IS a school!!

    Space: 5 out of 5 apples
    The place is MASSIVE!! To think the centre is in an office building, I naturally assume that there isn't much space(imagining tiny, cramped office cubicles)..I was wrong!! There is even a playground IN the centre and it is waaaay bigger than our H/D/B playground! Auni immediately explored the playground when we arrived..Hehe!!

    The FEEL(heh) : 1 out of 5 apples
    I can be biased here cos I can..It has a huge space, it is relatively new..
    But I just ain't feeling it..Let me tell u why..
    We rang the bell and a lady unlocked the door..She just said, 'Yes?' So I told her
    that I am here to check out the place as I was interested to send my daughter
    to the centre..All she said was,'I will show u around.'
    After showing us around(JUST showing, only telling us what room for what
    class and thats all..no extra info and not even asking me anything whatsoever),
    my mum asked her if she was a teacher..Guess what she was?
    Yup, the principal..*insert blank face*
    Okaay, so WHAT if u have Masters(she does, according to the staff
    qualifications board) It doesn't mean u know EVERYTHING abt preschool
    education..It just shows that u like to study..Bah!! Obviously, she is a
    greenhorn when it comes to talking to potential parents like me..She lost me
    the moment she ended her tour..Anyway, she DUMPED us..Yup, some men
    came..Obviously, they are from the board..She didn't say anything, just walked
    off to talk to them and then, a teacher came over and showed us out..That teacher was great..Her aura was fantastic..She chatted with us and played with Auni..Too bad, she is in e
    wrong centre..

    Location: Near my place, husband could easily drop Auni on his way to work but far away from either parents to come to fetch Auni at 1..

    Price: WAY out of our budget..$556.20 for a half day prog, after subsidy..


    :::::Centre 2:::::
    Cleanliness: 4 out of 5 apples
    It is well-maintained..
    Lots of mess(kids' mess, which I love!)

    Space: 4 out of 5 apples
    Voiddeck setting..But I could see that the centre space is managed well..

    The FEEL : 4 out of 5 apples
    I could work in a place like this!! The environment is so warm! Lots of engaging
    communication btw children and teachers..Teachers were helping out to
    subdue a crying toddler..The centre is ALIVE..I like it..Auni loves it..She couldn't go
    into the centre but she could see how much fun it was..She kept saying, 'Kakak!
    Kakak! Toys! Toys! Mamam!(cos the kids were eating their snacks) :P
    An admin clerk(I'm assuming!) was very friendly and chatty..She answered all
    my queries and even wrote down for me the details when I asked her if she could..
    Received a bag with lots of useful brochures from M/C/Y/S, a lil notepad and
    a I/K/E/A like pencil.. :)

    Location: Far from my place..Sort of in btw both sets of grandparents but they still have to take public transport to get there..Not feasible on foot..

    Price: Pretty reasonable..$315 for a full day prog(no half day prog), after subsidy..


    :::::Centre 3:::::
    Cleanliness: 4 out of 5 apples
    Similar to Centre 2..Lots of children's work being displayed..I like!!

    Space: 3 out of 5 apples
    Voiddeck setting but smaller than centre 2..A bit cramped..

    The FEEL : 4 out of 5 apples
    I got a feeling..That tonight's gonna be a good night..Ok! Stop it! :P
    Warm feeling all around..Teachers mingling with children..A toddler was
    following the principal as she gave me a tour..So cute!
    Would like to share that the principal is a good friend of mine and we are ex-
    colleagues so I know what she is like and I love her..Biased here..Can't blame me!
    I am sure if u know of someone who is a good friend and manages a centre, u would
    trust her to take care of ur lil one..

    Location: The nearest to and from my place..The furthest from both sides..That means that if I place Auni there, most likely she will be on the full day program..Something that I do
    not want cos I am sure both sides will miss her if she is on a full day program..And I
    still do want her to be with either side during the day..That is why I am only interested in half day programs in CCs..Family bonding is impt for us.. :)

    Price: Pricier than Centre 2..$350 for a full/half day prog , after subsidy..BUT!! The whole organisation is revising the price so it will be higher than $350..


    :::::Centre 4:::::
    Cleanliness: 4 out of 5 apples
    It is well-maintained..Neater than Centres 2 and 3 cos it is a kindergarten..The only
    kindergarten which I visited..

    Space: 4 out of 5 apples
    Voiddeck setting but there is ample space..

    The FEEL : 3 out of 5 apples
    When we came, there was only the staff around..The principal wasn't around so a
    teacher entertained me..Basically, she gave me all the info which I could get on the
    net..Sadly, I could only register Auni once she reaches 30 months, no sooner..That
    means we have got to wait till February 2011 to register Auni..What are the odds of
    any vacancy?? Come on la, school year starts in Jan..Most parents whose children
    are born on or before June 2008 would be fighting for a place..Bummer..

    Location: Far from my place..This is really in btw both sides(major plus point!) and is feasible on foot.. :))

    Price: $163 for a 2 hr prog..

    There was one more centre(it is a kindergarten) which I wanted to visit but it was closed when we came..School hours was from 9 to 11..We came at 3..Hehe! Anyway, what I read from the notice board and online is that the monthly school fees is $160..This centre is right under my mum's home and most likely, the arrangement to send Auni to school would be my mum sending her to school every day and both mums fetching her from school on alternate days..Easy peasy lemon squeasy..But I still have to look at the centre first..No doubt it is a small setting but I still wanna have a look..Wanna have a 'feel'..Very important for me!! ;)

    So thats it!! Now you know how anal I am and can be when it is anything regarding Auni..Be it her brand of diapers(why buy exp brand when cheaper ones does the same thing and is even softer!), her brand of milk(Yes, she does drink a more exp brand of milk but the nutrients she is getting is way better than other brands and I do save from not buyin exp diaper brand), e tv programs she is allowed to watch(Sesame/street, D/i/b/o, P/o/c/o/y/o..Me love!), the amt spend watching tv/dvds(Max half an hr at 1 sitting!), etc etc..

    I have to say that I blame peer pressure for pushing me to step out of my comfort zone with regards to Auni's education..What I planned before is to let her enjoy her toddlerhood at the both families and only send her to a playgroup when she is 3, nursery when she is 4 and kindergarten thereafter..Sending her to CC was definitely not an option for me as I still have both mums available(on certain days!)..But now, times have changed..

    Actually, I still find that half day CC prog is still too long for Auni..That is why for now, playgroup setting seems more feasible..What I want Auni to gain from these outside activities is mainly social interaction..Either side is fab for reading to her and playing with her..Either side does bring her out but she doesn't get much opportunity to interact with her peers..


    Hehehe!!!!!!!!!! No more blogging in the dark..Auni!! U scared me shitless!! Anyway, so brave of u to come to my room all by urself and navigating in the dark too?!! Awesome!! And thank you for shutting my door as well..What polite manners.. :*

    Anyway, where was I..

    Another reason why I prefer a playgroup setting is that I do not want to overwhelm her..She will only be 29 months in Jan 2011!!

    I did say that I blame peer pressure(4 out of 5 friends have sent their kids to CCs)..I also blame family pressure..It is mainly my mum..

    She is such an active lady, I tell u..She is working as a part time Malay teacher, teaching Malay to non-Malay pri school kids on Mons, Tues, and Thurs(that's her schedule for now..will change after she finishes at 10 weeks)..She is a chairlady for PPN(some parent volunteer thingy) at my bro's sec school(meaning that my bro can't play a fool cos she can and will talk to his teachers as and when necessary..HAHAHA!!) So her 'off' days are only Weds and Fris and sometimes she will go for sewing classes..See la!! How to jaga cucu!!!

    She complains when she want to go for sewing classes or any other activity on her 'off' days and my lil sis isn't arnd to take care of Auni..She said that Auni needs to go to school and interact with other adults and her peers..She told me that it is better to place Auni in a school so that when no. 2 comes, either side can focus on him/her whilst Auni is at school (point taken)..

    So after telling her everything of what I learnt during my lovely recce-ing moments, she suddenly asked..'Why want to send Auni to school, isn't she still too young?'

    *insert an extremely black expression*

    Me: Wei! U are the one who tell me to send her to school!!
    Her: Got meh? She's still too young la! Kesian!
    Me: U said u got no life!! Teaching, then off days kena jaga cucu!!
    Her: Alah, I jaga Auni only 2 times a week aper..
    Me: Alah! Now then u say like this, that time u say, u got no time for ur sisters la, cannot make impromptu trips to JB, cannot go sewing class if Aziq not arnd to jaga Auni, cannot sew at home cos Auni disturb u..
    Her: No la!!
    Me: Bedek!!!!!

    Naughty naugthy!!!

    I suspect she feels guilty for pushing me to recce schools for Auni..I think she didn't expect me to really go out and recce..And I too feel that she knows that ppl are gonna talk behind her back, saying how come cannot jaga cucu when only work part time..HAHAHA!!! Takut kena gossip!! :P

    So for now, I'm still undecisive..Will need to talk more with husbd..He too feels more inclined towards playgroup setting.. :))

    Anyways, this has been fun..I have not blogged for ages! And it feels great to let it all out..

    PS: I am not pregnant now..But am in talks with husbd abt no 2..He damn excited lor! :P
    PPS: It is so late now!! 4.39 am!!!

    BYEEEEEE!!! *hugs adorable Auni to sleep*

    Sunday, March 07, 2010
    I think I have come to understand that I shouldn't be bothered with some people..Tried to make the first move..Tried to be more chatty..But I think I am being mistaken for being a nosey parker..Oh well..If my presence is unwanted, I might as well don't bother anymore..All I wanted is to know how they are.. :(

    Moving along to a happier note!!

    I visited a newborn last Sat and oh my gosh, my maternal hormones were raging!! They raged even more when I saw how Auni tenderly kissed the baby so many times and stroking her gently..Auni even said,'baby' and 'adik'..Awwww!!!

    Patience, patience, dear me..That time WILL come..InsyaAllah..

    Newborn smell is just sooo irresistable..If I was to left alone with that baby, I would be smothering her with kisses..Hehehee!!

    For now, 2 babies are enough for me..One is a big baby boy and the other is an adorable baby girl..Both whom I love to death and would do anything for..

    3 As, we shall be for now..

    Baby no 2, I am sure when you are finally here, I am sure Kakak Auni will be sooo loving to u.. :)))