Today is a day that I rejoice! Finally, the 3 weeks of solo parenting is OVER! The government returned my husband to me last night and even though I was stuck in a class till almost midnight, there is so much to be happy about!

One of them is, of cos, moving back into my own home later today. Can’t wait. I miss my bed!

While the solo parenting has been somewhat tough and extremely tiring, I got to bond a lot with my little kid, Jerome.

He was stuck to me at the hip almost everyday when I was on leave for a week and boy, did we have fun! I also realised that I haven’t had the chance to pay more attention to him as I had with Jerry, but I learned so much more about him during the week we both were stuck together 24/7.

It’s really quite amazing.

Us, having some fun at the corridor with his Transformers.

Us, having some fun at the corridor with his Transformers.

I found out his comprehension level is pretty good and I could pretty much get (short) opinionated replies from him. He can definitely understand/talk more than I give him credit more. He can form short short sentences to request for things, complete with a “plisss”. It’s quite cute to hear!

He negotiates with me in his own little way (No! Hurmph! Ngh-Ngh *shakes head*) and often drags me around the house for things that he wants me to give him or unable to reach himself.

Having loads of fun playing all by himself.

Having loads of fun playing all by himself.

While he can play solitarily, I observed that he likes to be in the same room as someone else. Say, he is quietly playing in room A and I make a exit while he is engrossed in play… He would notice my absence and run around the house to find me, and stay close to me. It’s very endearing yet, frustrating while I try to get chores done or cook. Because of that, I hardly cooked because it is not really safe and I ended up packing food on most days. Also partly because I was too tired/lazy to wash more things.

Posing along the corridor!

Posing along the corridor!

He isn’t really posing here actually. He was just waiting by the wall and I found it really cute like he was posing for an #ootd. He is like a little adult himself and so different from Jerry. He doesn’t ask for hugs, he isn’t needy or whiny at all, and readily gives hugs and kisses when asked. His favourite routine when he wakes up every morning is to go grab his shoes because he knows we have to send the gor gor (Jerry) to school!

It will be his turn going to the school in 1 month’s time and I am pretty sure he is going to thrive. He doesn’t quite have strangers’ anxiety, he usually observes his surroundings quietly and it is like he is making a mental checklist of what he can and cannot do. Parenting him is such a different experience from Jerry.

He can easily name his favourite toys – Prime, BaBee (BumbleBee), Boulder, Chase, Thomas! When I am driving, he points out all the trees and tell me, “Mama! Trees! Trees!” and some times, “Train!”,  “Truck!” or “Bus!!”.

He also somewhat understands that we are pretty stuck to each other and kept asking me the whole week, “Papa! where? Ah Ma! Where? Ah Gooo! Where?” and runs around the house going, “Ah ma! Where are you?!”.

I even heard stuff like, ” Mama! See! (points to empty bed) Papa go where?”

Super. Duper. Cute.

Highly engrossed with playing his transformers toys.

Highly engrossed with playing his transformers toys.

I don’t remember Jerry doing the same thing at his age. Jerry could only name a few words at 19 months, and I remembered he barely talks when he started school! What a stark difference but being the 2nd kid always have advantages since there is always big brother to learn from.

Looking so grown up.

Looking so grown up.

Just a random note, this shirt is so suited for him. It says “Little but loud!”. That’s what my kid is!

Jerome is also somewhat toilet training ready. As much as I hate to admit it, and would prefer the convenience that comes with diapers… He is really ready. He has been tugging me and dragging me to the toilet and goes “Shhee shhee!!”. I kept thinking that he mistaken “Shee Shee” as potty and put him seated on the toilet bowl, only to have nothing. A few days of repeated scenarios later, it suddenly dawned on me that he really might just mean pee, and I left him standing on the toilet bowl instead. He peed into the toilet bowl alright and left mummy here in amazement. It did happen a few more times after that so I know its no coincidence.

He also haven’t been pooing in his diaper for a long time. If we are home, he usually drags me and points to the toilet door and I would get the cue to put him on the toilet bowl. Where has my baby gone to? Jerry didn’t start toilet training until many months after he started school.

“Cheese!” Jerome poses for a picture and tries to emulate the V-sign.

This kid loves taking pictures and recently, he has been trying to form the “V” sign with his fingers. Not there yet, but slowly and surely! He is also quite the monkey. He makes monkey faces or contorts his face to show me. And then, the other day, he stuck his tongue and moved it side by side to mock me! My first reaction was, “WHO TAUGHT HIM THAT?!”.

Ok. I know no one will admit, but I am guessing the biggest culprit is Jerry Choo, my cheeky monster. So now, I probably have two cheeky monsters to deal with.

Jerome contorts his face to give me this look!

Contorts his lips to give me this look!

I never really verified but my kid is like huge as compared to his peers. I think he is easily over the 97th percentile for his age, only a few hundred grams difference in weight as compared to Jerry who is, 20 months older. He is surely going to be taller than Jerry at some point.

Kids really love going out, don’t they?

Jerome sits at the door step to wear his shoes!

Jerome sits at the door step to wear his shoes!

This kid loves bringing his shoes to the door step to wear his shoes. He attempts to wear them himself. Sometimes succeeding, sometimes not. I recently bought him a pair of tong slippers and he can wear those all by himself alright! YAY to independence!

In the one week that I was on leave and watching after him full time, I also let him have free rein of creativity within a confined environment. I gave him a stool at the corridor one day.. he was staring at it for a while.. sat on it for moments.. and guess what happened?

He sits on the stool, and observes that there is a hole underneath.

He sits on the stool, and observes that there is a hole underneath.

He sits on the stool for a brief moment, and then realised there is a hole underneath and drove his Optimus Prime to park there. And then, he realises that the car can drives through the hole.. and started pushing them through!

Jerome pushes his cars through the hole underneath him.

Jerome pushes his cars through the hole underneath him.

He then spends the next 30 mins doing the following. I like how he explores a simple stool and can have so much fun with it. I honestly prefer this type of exploration play as compared to watching TV or playing some gadgets. They develop motor skills much better this way, and build those muscles in those little fingers and hands.

Sprawled on the floor, pushing the cars through non stop!

Sprawled on the floor, pushing the cars through non stop!

I have so much fun myself just observing him! I sometimes feel the the hectic lifestyle here is a tad horrible for the kids growing up. It’s so competitive for them and it takes out all the fun in childhood.

As someone who stayed in a kampung attap house till I was 4, kids these days are really missing out a lot of fun. They don’t climb trees, catch fishes, chase chickens and build houses out of twigs, branches and big leaves anymore. They cannot even relate on catching spiders and the spiders they see are probably those “Daddy-Long-Legs” in the house or those in the tanks at the zoo. They probably don’t know spiders also exist underneath leaves in bushes and shrubs, and practically everywhere in a natural environment. I honestly miss those days so I want to expose my kids to as much nature as I possibly could.

Now that I am back to work again, it’s equally tiring but I really treasure those precious moments where the kids & me only have each other for company. There are many nights where I almost tore my hair out because they refused to sleep and I was so, so tired but I somehow managed, one day at one time.

I know there are tough moments or periods in motherhood/parenting sometimes. I know that at times, it does feel like it is a thankless job, but when the going gets tough, I always tell myself it *will* be over soon and I know I will be able to overcome this, even if it is one minute at a time. How worse can it get right? It is all about positivism and I hope that when you have some tough parenting moment, keep in mind that it would definitely be better!

And that you would be rewarded with smiles like that..

Happy Jerome with his biscuits (!!) on the bed.

Happy Jerome with his biscuits (!!) on the bed. (P.s. He is a biscuit monster)

Jumping around in bed!

Jumping around in bed!

There would *always* be a rainbow after the rain, right? Rainbows are all about optical illusions, so parenting is all about positive mindset. It’s same same, but different, but you get the gist.

Now, I have a little sweetener to make your parenting journey a little better. I have 1 x $100 Pumpkin Patch voucher to giveaway. Surely any parent winning it will think it is a bright spark right? Just follow all the steps in the widget below and you are on your way to winning! Do remember to read the terms and conditions!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and conditions:
1. All steps must be completed before it can be considered a valid entry.
2. Giveaway ends on 31 December 2014, 2359 (Singapore time).
3. Winner will be randomly selected from the pool of qualified entries via the widget on 1 January 2015. Incomplete or invalid entries will be automatically disqualified without notice.
4. Inactive social media accounts or accounts set up solely for participating in contest/giveaways will be automatically disqualified. We reserve the right to determine the qualifying entries as such.
5. This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
6. The prize will be provided for by Pumpkin Patch Singapore and any collection of vouchers will be between the winner & Pumpkin Patch Singapore.
7. We reserve the right to amend the terms and conditions without prior notice. 

If you have some time to spare, do remember to check out the M.I.C.E giveaway that is also currently happening on the blog and ending tonight (20 Dec, 2359hr) so hurry! And well, there is a *NEW* giveaway starting tomorrow too, so do remember to check back!

Disclaimer: This is a part of a series of sponsored post with Pumpkin Patch Singapore. Jerome’s outfits in this post & the giveaway prizes are all sponsored. We totally love the clothes (especially that the style isn’t at all kiddy and that it’s very in trend with the current fashion trends) and daddy is often wishing he could fit into one of those stylish berms that they have to offer. Heh! Too bad for him. Meanwhile, all thoughts, opinions and experiences in this post are of my own!