Friday, July 29, 2011

a couple specific restrictions

Apparently there have been a few issues on the MRT (subway/tube/underground trains) in Singapore.

The country, known for its impeccable organization and planning - sometimes at the risk of being a bit too organized and therefore dull - have released these new restrictions for baggage on the MRT.

drop those plasma's ladies

Unfortunately, they've done so around a price increase, which makes most commuters feel they should be allowed, as one fabulous facebook friend put it, "to bring a baby elephant" on-board if they wish.

What really stands out to me is how specific they've been. You are not allowed to bring a 32 plasma TV on the train. Really? Is this a big problem? I've never seen anyone on the MRT with a TV!!

Oh, and don't bring big cartons either. What's next, luggage?

Mass transit is only for commuters it seems.

Friday, July 22, 2011

how to tell if its really your birthday

Like most children, my daughter loves her birthday. She loves cake, presents and most of all, the attention!

Throughout the year, I will prep her for upcoming birthdays. For some reason, I always get the same response.
Me: Tomorrow is Daddy's birthday, so we're going to celebrate tomorrow. Isn't that exciting?
Niamh: It's MY birthday tomorrow?
Me: No, its Daddy's birthday.
Niamh: Mine?
Me: (Sigh) No, your birthday is in July. I'll tell you when its your birthday.
On top of this, she consistently offers her services in unwrapping other people's gifts and blowing out candles.

I guess because birthday's are always my word against her hope, when it actually was her birthday, she couldn't quite believe it.

I told her a week in advance, "next week is your birthday!" and reminded her leading up to the day, "Sunday is your birthday!"

This year, she got something special. A big girl bike from both sets of her grandparents. She was ecstatic, and within an hour was whizzing around on it. She also had a party with her friends at our house, cupcakes, presents, the whole deal.

Later, she spoke to her Mimi and Pops to thank them.
M&P: Happy birthday Niamh!
Niamh: Are you serious???
M&P: (moment of silence). Yes, happy birthday, today's really your birthday!!
N: Are you playing funny games?
I had to get on the phone and explain that yes, we gave her the bike and she loved it. Yes she did know it was her birthday!

But without a sense of time, how do children really know it's their birthday? It must feel like I'm a mean mom denying her a possible birthday 364 days of the year. She can hardly believe her luck when it finally is.

Monday, July 4, 2011

how to traumatize your children

Recently, my Uncle posted some baby pictures of me on Facebook. Looking at them I can almost remember these moments. Probably because as a kid I used to look at my baby pictures all the time, so they still seem so familiar.

When I was at home last week, I decided to pull out my baby album, which I haven't seen in years. I wanted to show it to my daughter, who is now about to turn four. I thought she would enjoy seeing how we look alike, what my parents (her Mimi and Pops) looked like when they were my age, and seeing her Mooma (my grandmother) back then too.

About 2-3 years old, at our timeshare in the Florida Keys

I thought I would point out our family dog at the time, our old house, and us being on vacation in the Keys - the same place we still vacation - and that it would be a really sweet Mother/Daughter activity.

Per usual, I was wrong. It lead to a hysterical breakdown complete with heaving sobs and a runny nose.
"What's wrong?" I asked shutting the album on page 2.
SOB, unable to reply through the extreme tears.
"Honey, use your words and tell Mommy what's wrong," I pleaded.
"There's no me!" she sobbed.
I tried in vain to explain that of course there wasn't yet, Mimi and Pops had a baby, that is Mommy. Then Mommy and Daddy grew up and had her. No dice, this didn't make it better at all. In fact, the entire history of the world apparently began when my daughter was born. She was born and brought the rest of us into existence with her arrival, or at least she thinks so.

So if you're looking for a fun family activity/way to traumatize your children, have you considered sharing your family album?

what's in a name?

I've been playing with the name of this blog for some time now. I just never find something I really like. So I think I need you, my readers, help.

I've gone from the rather un-original name, Dalton, to an unconventional life, to fabulous abraod. The blog is definitely a mixture of funny stories and observations from life in Asia, being a working mom and just being a mom in general!

What do you think the name of the blog should be? Please drop my any ideas.

And thank you for reading! xo

There's always a solution

One of the things I loved most about living and working in China was that there was always a solution. The answer is never really 'No' - there is always a way around the problem at hand. I admire this ability for limitless possibilities. It makes China exceptionally exciting, it has possibly, also made me petulant about the organization and limitations of working in a more 'Western' style. But that's another discussion.

However, just because there is always a solution to a problem, doesn't mean the solution is a good one - as this video reminds me.

Here is a driver in China, going over the footbridge to get around a traffic jam. Seriously? I'm shocked they could even pull this off, but possibly the best part of the video is that people continue to try and walk around the car. If I got to the stairs and saw a car at top facing down on me, I would NOT keep walking towards it. Especially the guy with the baby in his arms....

Watch the whole video, it's worth it.

Friday, May 20, 2011

the dog and the cat

We've had our completely neurotic cat now for at least 5+ years. I'm his favorite person in the world and he lives for me. This could be a symptom of his neurosis.

Last year we got a dog. I had always believed that if you have the cat already when you get the dog, that they get used to each other. I now know this is not true. Apparently, if you get them together, they grow up together. Basically, our cat still despises the dog and acts completely put out if the dog even so much as looks at him.

The dog however, cannot seem to come to terms with the fact that Tucker (our cat), does not want to a) play with her b) be chased by her.

After nearly a year together, this is what a typical encounter looks like.

1. Sandy realizes Tucker has come out of hiding - spots him in the kitchen. Tucker puts his ears back and wishes in vain that she will go away.

2. Sandy thinks she can slowly slide closer without Tucker noticing. He begins to move away.

3. Fully busted, Sandy goes into play position. Tucker tries to make an escape.

4. Tucker looses his cool and chases the dog while hissing.

Just another day in pet paradise.

Jakarta in pictures

Recently I went to Jakarta for work. It was a much cooler, funkier, vibey city than I expected. Needless to say, it wasn't a fundamentalist, jihad-hungry muslim state that the American media had previously suggested. In fact, the people were super nice and modern.

Here's some cool facts about Indonesia. Indonesia has 17,508 islands and is the world's 4th most populous country. It's Facebook's second largest market, and Indonesia's biggest twitter personality is our Chairman's daughter, Sherina Munaf - who as of today, has 1,126,298 followers!

Urban Road-side Art

Gado Gado with Rice Cake

Gado Gado without Sambal Sauce - even better!