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Monday, March 31, 2014

Eclecticism + Lauren Jasmine | Little Shopaholics

Come join us at the Little Shopaholics Party this Saturday, 5 April 2014 at Eclecticism + Lauren Jasmine, Wheelock Place.

Shop to your heart's content in this haven of specially curated labels in a comfortable setting akin to your dream walk in wardrobe, while your little ones play at this party created specially for moms and kids. 

Selected merchandise from PriviKids will be available for sale from 4 - 30 April 2014 in store.

About Little Shopaholics
"Little Shopaholics" is specially created for moms and kids, because Eclecticism + Lauren Jasmine understand the need for moms who want to shop without having to leave their kids at home.
So, while mommies shop in the store,  the little ones will be spoiled with art & craft activities, such as mosaic frame making, face painting, and even a caricaturist. Admission is free for all!

Venue: Wheelock Place #B1-06
Date: 5th April 2014 (Saturday)
Time: 2pm to 5pm

2pm and 3.30pm -
Mosaic frame making
2-3pm and 4-5pm - Face painting
3-4pm -
Monday, March 24, 2014

Seen in stores: Whimsical clocks from Modern Moose

Buying the right clock for the house is often an interior design after-thought for the most of us. And that might not be a bad thing, as it is extremely difficult to find clocks in Singapore that are unique, beautifully designed and reasonably priced. I was searching high and low for the perfect clocks that are consistent with the design of our new home a couple of years ago, but the shops then offered choices that were either too common, crazily expensive or just plain ugly. I could still remember my excitement when I finally found these Lemnos clocks at Lifestorey (Great World City, #02-15).

In our living room. Beautifully simple, and comes with a stand which we needed.
In our kitchen. Looks like cookie dough don't you think?
I have been teaching Aiden how to tell the time every now and then (he knows how to tell the "o'clock" positions now) with a toy clock and the Lemnos in the living room. There's no clock in his room though, as we have not come across any that would match his room (or even his personality).

But my heart was sent racing again last week when these whimsical 3D clocks from Modern Moose at Individual Expression (Wheelock Place, #B1-02) caught our eye. Upon closer scrutiny, I was pleasantly surprised to find them very well made in the US and well designed. Just take a look at some of them here!

There are so many designs that would look amazing in his room. I especially love the 3D pendulum clocks! The shark pendulum clock would be perfect in Aiden's room which has baby blue and white stripes. Designed and made in the US by industrial designer Paul Ocepek, these whimsical creations are made from laser cut baltic birch plywood, printed with non-toxic water-based inks and pre-drilled with a hole for easy hanging.

However, the clocks are not exactly cheap, which was why we didn't get one on the spot. 3D clocks are going for $79, whereas the 3D pendulum clocks are going for $89. Listed prices on the US online store at are much lower, but comes up to about the same with shipping charges included.

Which one is your favourite?

Friday, March 21, 2014

Review: Learn to ride using a Cruzee balance bike

There are three life skills that I would love to teach Aiden - riding a bike, swimming and chasing girls (hopefully in that order).

Well, he still prefers playing with boys in school compared to girls, and he loves his float too much to even think about jumping into the pool without it. So that leaves me with the easiest task of teaching him how to ride a bike.

Frankly, I had no idea how to teach him. I learned how to ride a bike in about 15 minutes when I was about seven or eight years old, and I struggle to recall the exact steps.  It seemed to involve only two steps though - one, being pushed down a steep slope on a two-wheel bike, and two, holding on for dear life.

Something like that.
So when The Little Bike Shop offered the Cruzee balance bike to us, the most difficult decision to make was the choice of colours. It comes in seven (!!) beautiful colours - black, silver, purple, blue, green, red and pink. I eventually chose black to match with my own mountain bike heheh.

Lovely anodized aluminium finish

What is the balance bike?

Many of us would start off our kids with a bicycle with training wheels. Afterall, it looks very safe, extremely stable and less daunting than a two-wheeler. However, exposing your kid to it would actually make it harder for them to graduate to the two-wheeler in the future. That is because the training wheels allow them to lean against the opposite way when making a turn. As a result, they won't be used to leaning into the same direction when making a turn (which is how you ride a two-wheeler). More importantly, all this time that they are on the training wheels, they don't actually learn the most difficult aspect of riding a bike, which is to find their balance!

Leave the training wheels behind and convert to the balance bike!
The balance bike forces your kid to try to balance, but in a safe way as the seat is low enough for both feet to reach the ground. It has no pedals to make the task more complicated, so kids tend to get the hang of balancing pretty quickly.

We had a bit of time last week (with us getting some respite from the haze and scorching sun) to try it out in the open. It helped that Aiden was already an expert on his YBike which he started riding before he turned two. It teaches the same concept of balancing and control, but in a much more forgiving way (through thicker wheels). And so it didn't take Aiden long before he got the hang of it. Looking forward to a longer practice session at the park again!

Why is the Cruzee so special?

Other than the premium looks with its sparkling 'Saphire' finish, the very obvious feature you would notice is how light it is. With the frame made of aircraft grade aluminium, this is the lightest running bike in the world at 1.9kg. I might get Stomped for this because last weekend, I had ordered Aiden to get off his bike and bring it out of a restaurant. Imagine the shock on people's faces when they saw our three year old carry the bike out by himself! In my defence, it was very inappropriate for him to ride the bike there. :D

Anyway, the Cruzee is also super safe (rust-free, padded seats, no protruding bolts) and easy to maintain (tool-free adjustments, sealed bearings, flat-free tyres).

Personally, I think the Cruzee is so special because Aiden looks super cool on it!

How does it compare to others?

I must admit that we had shortlisted a few balance bikes before the Cruzee glided (permanently) into our car boot. Here's how they compare.

Cruzee - aircraft grade aluminium
Valo - steel
FirstBike - injection molded composite frame

Cruzee - tool-free
Valo - wrench required
FirstBike - almost tool-free

Cruzee - 1.9kg
Valo - 2.6kg
FirstBike - 3.9kg

Seat height:
Cruzee - 25.5cm to 48cm
Valo - 28cm to 40cm
FirstBike - 30.5cm (with separate lowering kit) to 44.5cm

Braking mechanism:
Cruzee - no (use both legs instead!)
Valo - no
FirstBike - yes

Cruzee - yes, integrated near back wheel
Valo - unknown
FirstBike - no

Steering limiter:
Cruzee - no
Valo - no
FirstBike - yes

Cruzee - 7
Valo - 5
FirstBike - 4 (street model)

Interested in the Cruzee? Find out more by visiting the Facebook Page of The Little Bike Shop. You can also buy them from our online store (Yes, that's how much we love the bike!). What's more, you can get a 10% discount on accessories. Details are in the picture below (click to enlarge) and our PriviKids Facebook Page.

Happy Cruzee-ing!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Let's Do Art!

Together with his playmate Levine, Aiden signed up for two complimentary trial classes with smARTs Nurture Works.
This is an art class which focuses on process based art to cultivate the child's creativity and confidence. Here's what we like about it:

Non cookie cutter approach
Hearing about the non cookie cutter approach of this class was what caught my interest. It emphasizes on allowing true creativity and expression of ideas to come forth in each child's art piece.

Small group per class
We like it that the classes are kept small (under 6) so each child gets sufficient guidance from the teachers & interaction time.

Variety of art ranges
The kids get their hands on making art using a wide variety of art ranging from drawing with crayons, painting with water color and various handicrafts, clay modelling and canvas painting (for the older ones). We like that they get exposed to age appropriate art techniques and materials. 

Improve fine motor skill, hand-eye coordination 
From holding of a pain brush, to deciding on the colors to use for their art work, all these help hone their fine motor skills as well as build confidence as they engage in decision making.  

Improve attention span and observation skills
The class is an hour, which helps train them to be still for an extended period. Through smelling, touching and doing art with real flowers in the first class, it helped to improve their observation skills and I can see their eyes lit up as they discover new things around them.  

Music & Movement
For a short period before and after the class, the kids get to interact with song & dance, as well as a bubble session at the end. Which kid doesn't like bubbles? Guess this ended off the class nicely and Aiden even said, 'I want to come here tomorrow.'  

Here's what they can improve on:

More guidance from teachers
As one parent has to accompany the kid to the class, we feel that the teachers rely too much on the parents to guide the kids on interacting and doing the craft work in class.

Teachers with more experience with kids
We feel that the teachers were not building a good rapport with the kids and they can probably brush up on this so that they can communicate and interact better with the kids to enhance the learning process.

Incorporate music during the class
We feel that the environment can be more relaxing with soft music playing in the background while the kids were doing their art work. This can inspire the kids as well.

For those of you who are keen, sign up for your two complimentary classes here and have your kids get in touch with their creative side.

smARTS Nurture Works
77/79 East Coast Road, #01-01, Singapore 428783
Tel: 64406808
Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Joyful Easter Adventure - eXplorerkid

How are you celebrating Easter this year? No plans yet? 

Fret not, as eXplorerkid is bringing you The Joyful Easter Adventure. Bring your kids to a fabulous family day out at Downtown East on Saturday, 19 April 2014 from 10am.  

There will be exciting activities including the Bunny Hop Race for younger kids from 4 to 6 year olds, and Egg & Spoon Race for kids from 7 to 9 year olds. Parents can join in the fun with Pin-the-Tail where they participate with their child between 4 to 12 year old. 

Attractive prizes worth more than $350 are for grabs in all these activities. What are you waiting for? Register here before 7 April 2014 and mark your calendar for colorful egg hunting. 


No. 1 Pasir Ris Close
Level 3, E!hub @ Downtown East
Singapore 519599

For more enquiries, please contact eXplorerkid at 6589 1668 / 6582 3149 or email them at

Win a ticket to The Joyful Easter Adventure
We have 3 tickets to the Easter Adventure brought to you by eXplorerkid for 3 of our readers. Simply follow these 3 easy steps to participate:
1) Like eXplorerkid Facebook Page
2) Like PriviKids Facebook Page
3) Leave us a comment for this blog post with your Name, Email Address and Which is your favourite activity at the Joyful Easter Adventure Event?   
Closing date for submission of entry is 30 March 2013 (Sun), 11pm.

Disclosure: This post is in collaboration with eXplorerkid. All opinions are my own. 
Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Reviewed: BreakOut Games (real life escape experience)

"Who’s free for a game of soccer this Sunday?"


"My hands are so itchy! Mahjong at my place tonight, anybody?"


I guess many of the parents out there can identify with the above conversation, or in the case of the Whatsapp group chat above, the monologue. As much as we cherish our dear friends, there are only that many hours in a day for busy parents juggling family and work. It is even harder to find enough parents who can pry themselves away from their families for anything more than half a day to take part in group activities. Even when we can, we often feel guilty of leaving our other half to tend to our kids, or end up rushing for time and not being able to enjoy ourselves.

More often than not, we end up catching up with friends at birthday parties for kids, weddings and even funerals, instead of cafes, pubs and kopi-tiams like the old times. Sometimes, we wish we could momentarily escape from the real world.

And now we can!

There is a new craze sweeping across the world and it is something that parents can fully and easily enjoy. I am talking about the real life escape game! This refreshing concept has its roots in Japan where virtual games are made real, putting you and your friends into a thematic room where you have to find clues, work together, solve puzzles and escape within a limited time.

Because you usually only need four to eight people and are given only 60 minutes to escape from the room, you can have lots of fun with your friends and get back home in time to your family, with a grin on your face!

While many such shops have sprung up recently, not all of them manage to provide the essence of the real life escape game experience, which is about the excitement, teamwork, challenge and game immersion. There are some rooms out there that lead you to waste your time on puzzles that don’t mean anything, only to be told afterwards that it was ‘supposed to be a decoy’! The most enjoyable rooms require the shop owners to put in a lot of thought and pay insane levels of attention to detail.

And that is why my friends and I enjoyed our time at BreakOut Games over the weekend.

Conveniently located right behind the busstop.
BreakOut Games was conceived by three young owners, who thought they could do better after trying out all the real life escape games in Singapore (and even a few overseas). Newly opened in February 2014 after spending months conceptualising and fine tuning the rooms, the first three games that were rolled out were Forever Young, The Scientist and Magician’s Secret.

If the game rooms sound a tad dramatic, it’s because the rooms are indeed dramatic! We played the Forever Young game room (intermediate difficulty) and boy were there surprises, screams and plenty of excitement! In the end, we managed to escape with about seven minutes remaining. Phew! My friend commented that I was so serious during the game, but I can’t help it! It’s the adrenaline kicking in!

I shall not spoil the fun by describing the rooms in detail but you just have to read the glowing reviews at TripAdvisor to know that it is one of the best real life escape games in Singapore.

Five heads are better than one. We escaped!
Apart from the rooms itself, the friendly staff (my female friends would describe them as hunky and handsome) complements the entire gaming experience. While we waited for the rooms to be ready (we were early for the session), they calmed us down and encouraged us to try out some small puzzles, just to loosen ourselves. They were also very patient in explaining the background story of the rooms and also when we got stuck. Unlike some shops, they dropped hints and gave us room to figure it out instead of simply telling us the answer. It almost feels as if we solved it on our own! :D It’s this attention to detail that sets them apart.

Friendly staff helped us enjoy the game even more.
In fact, the owners mentioned that they also welcome families with children to try the rooms out. They are even willing to make the room less difficult to escape from, just so your family can enjoy themselves. It’s a great way to observe how your kids react to challenges in a team environment.

Go check them out and plan your next escape!

Happy players!

  • Refreshing, challenging, immersive game experience
  • Clean rooms with carpet
  • Friendly staff
  • Affordable pricing
  • Reception/waiting area is small



Off Peak - $19 per pax (Mon – Fri before 5pm)
Peak - $22 per pax (Mon-Fri after 5pm, Sat, Sun and PH)

Opening hours:

Mon - Thur 12 noon to 12 midnight
Fri - Sat 11 am to 1 am
Sun 11 am - 12 midnight


31B Kreta Ayer Road S088998
Opposite Kreta Ayer Community Centre

Nearest MRT station:

Chinatown MRT Exit A and Outram Park MRT Exit H (5 mins walk)

Bus services:

80, 145 (Bus stop no: 05241)


Nearby public carparks and at Oriental Plaza
Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Why I Breastfed For 12 Months

When I was expecting Aiden, I decided in a heartbeat that I would be breastfeeding. I wanted to give him the best food, and what can be more natural and better for him than breast milk.

After our dramatic experience and finally ending up with an emergency caesarean delivery, I returned to my ward, still overwhelmed by the whole episode. As I was recovering from the post effects of epidural (I was shivering and felt numbness around my head too), the nurse brought Aiden to me for breastfeeding. I knew I wanted to breastfeed, I have read up a lot on breastfeeding and watched what I could to familiarize myself with the process. But when the moment came, I felt completely clueless. Luckily I had the help of the knowledgeable nurses and one of the nurses helped me to latch him on. The moment he latched onto me, the connection made me feel like I am now mum to this little boy. It was so surreal. Watching him suckle like he's a pro warms my heart and I am overwhelmed I am able to provide comfort and food for him. After a few more practices, I felt like I got the hang of it but my nipples were sore. I persevered and we managed to establish a better latch and comfortable feeding routine. 

Here's why I breastfed Aiden for 12 months:

Bonding with baby
Just holding him close to me in the early weeks helps us develop a closer bond and it calms him down as he feels more secure in my arms. I had separation anxiety when I decided to wean him off breastfeeding and really missed the bonding, while Aiden took the the bottle so easily - not looking back. 
Bonding with my baby - the first few days.
Stress buster
The skin on skin contact when breastfeeding helps me relax which is great for the initial months when I feel more stressed trying to cope with a newborn and attempting to decipher his cries.

Breastmilk is gold
I believe that breastmilk is the best food for baby. It is the most natural and provides the nutrition baby needs. I used to think that we can't breastfeed when we fall sick, but I realized that it is good to continue breastfeeding as the antibodies will be passed from mother to baby. Breast milk is also good for baby as it is easier to digest and breastfed babies fall sick less often. I am especially encouraged to see Aiden getting chubbier by the day as he was a premature baby at 35 weeks.
My little chunky thighs at nine months.
Help all around
Throughout the time I breastfed, I also expressed milk so that other members of the family can help to feed the baby when I needed some shut eye and when the baby refuses to latch on, we can have the option of feeding him expressed breastmilk instead of formula.
Daddy Darren feeding Aiden expressed breast milk.
Breastpump - the best investment
A good breastpump that fits seamlessly with your lifestyle is the best investment you'd make. It saves time, helps you multi-task and is efficient in expressing milk for your baby's consumption. With a comfortable routine established for expressing milk, it will support a longer period of breastfeeding.

The mean machine - portable Medela Freestyle seamless for my lifestyle.
Fuss free
No bottles & teats to wash and sterilize umpteen times a day. It is so much easier to bring baby for a day out or traveling when you breastfeed as you need not bring along formula, water, bottles and teats wherever you go. With a nursing cover and some privacy, you can feed baby on the go!

Set small goals
Celebrate when you can. Encourage yourself by setting shorter time frame goals like at every 1 month mark. I told myself I would aim to breastfeed for six months and anything more is a bonus, and I celebrate every month of exclusive breastfeeding.

Support group
It helps to have a breastfeeding support group amongst your friends or colleagues so you can exchange notes or have a buddy throughout your breastfeeding journey. Family support especially from your husband and parents helps as well.

Conducive environment
What really helped me during these 12 months, is the convenience of expressing milk at the workplace. Without this, it would be difficult to continue breastfeeding when I returned to work. I was lucky to have a considerate company who had a nursing room for mums to express milk. There was also a mini fridge for us to store our milk. Couldn't have done it without this.

To all new mums out there, remember that it is key to take care of yourself first, and do not give yourself added stress and pressure due to breastfeeding. I encourage supplementing with formula if the breastfeeding routine is making you feel depressed and down. For those of you who managed to establish a good latch and breastfeeding schedule with your baby, cherish this bonding period as babies grow up too quickly.
Aiden switching to formula after 12 months
Cherie will be sharing her breastfeeding journey tomorrow at Cherieladie, so hop over to hear about her experience. Cherie Lim is a mum of 2 lovely boys who blogs over at Cherieladie. When motherhood first descended on her, she was determined to breastfeed her son but as it turns out… she struggled with latching the baby. Read about how she eventually managed to breastfeed her boy exclusively for 13 months.

This post is part of a Blog Train hosted by Madeline at MadPsychMum. There are 24 mums with 24 breastfeeding stories to share so head on over to read all about their experiences.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Back To Work

I have mixed feelings about returning to work. On one hand, I feel good going back to work. On the other hand, I feel like I have not accomplished what I set out to achieve during the past 16 weeks of maternity leave. 

Returning to work makes the time I have at home with my family more precious.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder, and this is definitely true for me and the kids.

I reminded myself not to have Ava fall asleep in my arms so she can fall asleep on her own bed and learn to settle when she wakes up. But I can't bear not hugging her close to me, I won't have the luxury of doing so whenever I want to so I gave in.
Ava at 16 weeks old. My last day of maternity leave.
Aiden at 15 weeks old. My last week of maternity leave.

How nice it is when your baby tugs at your hair and hold your arm tightly as they fall asleep. I really love these moments.

Will share more on my life as a full time working mom with two kids in the upcoming posts.
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