Tuesday, May 12, 2009 ;
10:05 PM
9 May

I celebrated Mothers' Day on Sat. :-)
Actually on Fri, haha.

On Fri, H brought me to 2 shops selling very pretty clothes. Normally I don't fancy any clothes I see in the usual shops but this was one that carried mostly labels to be exported. So it was more like the style I am used to.

I bought myself a CK top and an Esprit 3/4 pants. Total cost about S$50. Sweet.

Then Sat morning, we met with 2 church friends to play badminton! It was so fun! I haven't played in eons.... Good that they asked us along!

ds2 took this pic of them. haha.

Oh and I wore my HC tee, cos I figured no one can recognise it here, haha. It is comfy. Paired it with my adidas pants. Later I changed when we went out to eat lunch. That's ds2 "trying" to play doubles with me.

We rented the court for an hour. Cost 25rmb (S$5). Can anyone tell me how much a similar court in Spore costs now? Want to see if that's cheap or expensive?

Even though we took turns to play, the play was intensive enough for my hardly-used muscles to produce too much lactic acid. And I am so unfit, my body was not efficient enough to clear the lactic acid away from the muscle... Sigh... I got aches in so many areas the next day, and it lasted 3 days!

Then while we are playing, he will run and follow the shuttlecock to the other side, and then pretend to play there. I tried to teach him how to play, he just would not follow instructions and would rather fool around the whole time. We let him be.

Some clips of ds1's game. This is at the start of the hour. Dh playing against him and Helen.

This clip is in the later half when he played just with Dh alone. Slightly improved in receiving the balls now. He's got a lot of extra movements though. Flinging and swaying his arms, moving the legs up when serving...

Recording is good, can review and take note of how to improve.

ds2 doesn't know how to play yet, but he wants to be in every game. So he "disturbs" Jan in this clip, playing with her, then later getting the racket cover to try and hit the shuttlecock.

There are table tennis tables and many other sports facilities for rental too. ds1 shown in front of the soccer field.

This is the top govt school in Tianjin. The sports center is really great -huge compared to most other schools.

That's their track, and our friends and the boys having fun with a mock race. Both ds had false starts and refused to stop. Basically, that meant they cheated, had a long headstart and refused to turn back, bent on winning.

Later we all walked to Binjiang Dao together. We decided to book the court next Sat again. It was much-needed exercise for all of us except Helen who regularly plays.

We passed by these lovely flowers. They told us it is called 月季花。Looked a lot like roses.

Dh attempted to be hero and carried both boys on his shoulders. They all giggled too much to be balanced and steady so I ordered them to get off. ds1 couldn't stand ds2's hands around his neck, he felt too tickled to sit properly. It was so funny.

We went to The Exchange to eat. Many options there that we liked. Unfortunately, our local friends did not share the same taste. They said they didn't want to eat there, so we ended up not eating together. We ate at 一茶一坐, kind of like a HK-style cha chan teng.

After that, we could not resist dessert at Cold Stone Creamery. Yum yum, we so miss this from US. Looks like we always get back more than the calories we burn.

Went home after that, made ds2 nap, then ds1's marimba teacher arrived for his lesson. Why at home now?
The school had only one marimba room and that room was now also used for guitar classes. The guitar classes now run from 2pm till 5pm, so the time slot had to be changed to 12.30pm on Sat if we still wanted to learn there.

The kids have art at 5pm. It would be so difficult to have marimba at 12.30pm. It disrupts our weekly lunch plans, and that meant we all have to waste a lot of time in between, while waiting for the art class after marimba.

So we told ds1 we should stop. He just began not too long ago, so it didn't matter, I think. We got our refunds from the school. They are so good at refunds, amazing service.

Then we asked the teacher if he could come to our house instead! He could! And we pay the same rate. Cos if we went to school, the school takes a cut from his pay anyway, so it is a win-win case for both of us. Now we need not travel and ds1 can learn in the comfort of his own home, with the same teacher, and the teacher is happy too.

Best of all, he is a postgrad student, and his schedule is very flexible, so this Sat when ds1 has a bday party Sat afternoon, he could change it to either Fri or Sun, doesn't matter. We also pay per lesson, so if we need to cancel, we can cancel, no penalty.

After class at home, ds2 was awake by then, and we set off for art class. It was a little rainy, so the kids wore their raincoats and off we went.

During art class, which Dh sat in with ds2, I went over to Mighty Deli and shopped to my heart's content, bought all the food stuff and groceries I liked. It's Mothers' Day! I chalked up enough for a VIP card. That'd give me more discounts in future.

That's great cos I would be here in summer everyday for the kids summer courses, so I would be good friends with the staff of Mighty Deli for sure.

(Mighty Deli carries imported groceries, so I got myself a lot of Spore/ Msia and USA food that I miss. To be fair, I got the kids their fave snacks too, a lot of Del Monte canned corn, and the Msian/Sporean type of mango pudding that Dh loves).

After art class, Dh had made a reservation at Din Tai Fung. Lovely.

We had a great meal and who should we meet as we were having our dessert? My neighbour H and her family. They were there celebrating Mom's Day too. And we also met the kids' school principal and her family, presumably there for the same reason. So funny, DTF becomes THE PLACE to celebrate anything, in Tianjin.

Here the kids, Dh and H are all engrossed in something. Make a guess.

It's a Pokemon manual! Argh, why do the kids like these so much? They'll pore over all the statistics of each pocket monster. They know the names, the colours, the powers blah blah blah.

Then I took a moms pic with H. It was so funny. When we saw what they ordered as their food was served, we could only laugh. Their order was identical to ours!!

Msians and Sporeans really have similar taste. haha.

We let the kids play in the playroom before and after the meal. That day's craft was different and specially for mothers' day. The kids can learn how to make carnations, tulips for their moms. Well, I hinted a lot, but ds1 sat glued to the Tom & Jerry showing on TV, while ds2 played with playdoh while watching TV.

Dh and I spent some time alone back at our table, finishing up the dessert... Finally we felt it was time to leave and returned to the playroom. This time, I called ds2 over and said directly (boys cannot take hint, you have to be direct), "Why don't you make a flower for mommy?"

He said ok, and he sat there, but he had to wait his turn, another girl was being instructed then. So the lady staff gave him a ready-made carnation. He presented it to me, so sweet, then he asked for another for himself! I told him not to take another, one is enough. Then he cried!

Aiyoh! The lady handed him one, said it's not a big deal. His tears stopped immediately. How do kids control their tear ducts so well?

rainbows every day, do not worry for the morrow

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