Thursday, December 24, 2015

A Christmas Post?

Here's a post, not exactly about Christmas (except for the last sentence) or a Christmas post, but simply a post just written a day before Xmas -
Many friends had commented that they admired my energy and wondered how I was able to bring the kiddos out on weekends (and even weekdays sometimes) despite having a full time job and needing to care after four rambunctious kiddos! I always shrug it off, as I felt it was no big deal as it felt natural for me to do so. As a matter of fact, I myself cannot fathom where exactly my energy came from. But I think I might have an idea, after one particular incident a few nights back.

I remember going to work one day and only realized that it was actually my off day that day. Most people wouldn't gone home to rest, but at that moment I only knew that I would like to spend more time with the kiddos, and hence I brought them out instead. There's hardly any place I would want to go without them, and that was the reason I started blogging, so that I can bring them to all the places that I may otherwise not.

On that same day, my wife needed to work late and I ended up tucking the two girls to sleep while Leroy waited up. All went well and we were actually singing "let it go" from Frozen, and having quite a bit of fun. We were laughing and giggling as we sang together. Steffi claimed she was Elsa and then Stacci wanted to be Anna. Then Steffi said I was Kristoff and I corrected her, telling her I was the King instead, because they were my daughters. But the King had died in the movie.

Steffi suddenly became quiet. She then asked how old I would be when she becomes as old as I am right now. And then she asked when death would find me. I calmly explained to both of them that all of us will die one day, and I wouldn't know for sure when it would be my turn. And although I would love to see them grow up and have families of their own, chances are, I will still go before them. By now Steffi’s eyes starting turning red.

She then asked if we would go to heaven if we died and I assured her that we would, for I just couldn't bear to tell her that I myself didn’t know. She then continued and asked if I would wait for her up there in heaven, and how will I know and how do we meet again when it is so big up there. Placing my palm on her chest, I explained to her that until that day comes when we meet again, I will live forever inside of her, right there in her heart. That started the three of us started crying, with little Stacci bawling and saying that she would miss me so much. This lasted a good 10mins at least, with Steffi tugging my heartstrings with her question, in-between sobs, on why there isn’t anything that could halt aging, so that we can grow old and pass on together. She said she didn’t fear death, but feared losing me. They hugged me the tightest that night, one on each side.

Then it dawned on me that the reason behind me having this great deal of energy is simply because I don’t want to miss a thing, and I fear time or rather the lack of it. I do not wish for time that I can have with the family to just slip by. I want to spend as much time as I have with my loved ones. My family, they are my fuel. I wish everyone a Merry Xmas and give your family the best gift ever, your time.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Our (Last) Birth Story

There is definitely some truth in the jokes that parents like to crack about having multiple kids. Jokes like how first time parents would disinfect the house and sanitize all feeding bottles religiously without fail for the firstborn, to casually dusting off the dirt off any food items on the floor and sticking by the 3-seconds rule when it comes to the third or fourth kiddo in the family. Well, I would just say that the kiddos get hardier down the line! 

Steffi accompanied us to the gynae as she wanted to look at Louie' ultrasound too!
Having experiencing 3 child birth in almost the exact same manner kind of killed the fun when it came to the birth of my fourth, our little Louie. But it was precisely because of having this intimate knowledge of knowing exactly what to expect, that I was able to capture some pretty (awesome and gruesome) photos. Both of us were really “zen” about the arrival of Louie and having already fixed a date for his birth, we only got down to packing the “luggage” for our staycation the night before. Oh, we even took a bus to Thomson Medical Centre since we had all the time. 

We even took the bus to the hospital because my wife didn't mind. This kind of wife really hard to find. 
The hospital was kind enough to upgrade us to a suite for our fourth delivery, which really surprised the wife and she even asked if we could extend our stay after we checked into our suite and realized how comfortable it was! I knew exactly what to expect, how to suit up to enter the delivery theatre, where to wait for my name to be called, how to act when inside and what can be or cannot be done. But the only thing I do not know, is how my son is going to look like! 

But what she didn't know is that we got upgraded to a suite upon registration!
It was pretty amazing don't you think so? Thanks to Thomson Medical Center!
All ready to be wheeled in. But she was really apprehensive about the surgery underneath the cuteness facade.
All ready for the big moment.
A cesarean section was definitely not our choice for our first two kiddos. It was performed on my wife because of fetal distress in the case of Steffi and it was only after she was delivered that the doctor realized it was due to the umbilical cord round her neck. As it was an emergency cesarean, I was not allowed in the theatre and it took my wife a considerable amount of time to accept Steffi after she woke up from all the anesthetics. And we did try for a natural birth the second time round for Leroy but it was not meant to be. 

The familiar corridor that I await for the nurses to call my name.
It was quite a wait and I had all the time, to even take selfies.
Friends and family had been joking that affixing a zipper on my wife’s tummy may be a better option and I would laugh along but deep down I know that every single cesarean section that she goes through, is really a gamble on her life. It is after all, not a minor surgery, even though we were rather nonchalant about it. Lives had been lost through such a surgery and I know that my wife is scared every single time, because she would confide in me just before the surgeries. The amount of blood lost, the depths of the cuts through skin, fat and muscles, and the amount of healing required post-surgery is something that I would never be able to imagine going through. That is the power of a mother, the gift of life to the next generation. 

The sacrifices of a mother. The gift of life.
She can still smile, as the gynae cut through her. I would have taken photos of everything if only they had allowed. In any case, she is the only women in this world whom I had literally seen through!
The moment Louie was delivered, just seconds old and held by the smiling gynae.
Here awaiting for hs cleanup and my cutting of his umbilical cord. 
The first time she laid her eyes on him. 
The customary pose for the camera.
All while the gynae was working on sewing her up.
And the friendly aesthetician even offered to take a family photo for us! 
She then asked me to pose for a photo with my second prince.

The wife had endure hours of trembling following the anesthetics. It was a side effect for her case.

As much as we loved children, and how glad we are with the way our kiddos turned out to be. They are the center of our lives now and we are extremely proud to be their parents. We did broached the idea of having even more kiddos but having considered the risk to the wife and the practicality of having one more newborn in the house, I guess we more or less have the answer. It’s been 7 years of having to deal with (different) babies, maybe we should have a little rest and finally watch them grow up. And yes, what other parents say about kids growing up too fast, is extremely true as well. Be sure to savor every moment with the kids, all you parents out there!

The heartwarming photo of Steffi carrying her youngest brother for the very first time.
And also a photo of all the siblings together, their first group photo! We are simply blessed!

This post is part of the ‘Birth Stories’ Blog Train hosted by Owls Well. To read other exciting birth stories please click on the picture below.

And if you would like to travel to the previous stops on this Blog Train and read more interesting birth stories, you can start with the following -

Michelle is a mother of 2 and as the founder of The Chill Mom Maternity Concierge, she has helped many busy mums-to-be plan and manage the arrival of their babies. Read her post on what she has learnt after the birth of her own daughters.

At next week's stop, we will be visiting Danessa Foo at PrayerFull Mum. Danessa is a Stay-at-Home Mum to one precious princess. Read on to find out this mother's experience of giving birth that took place 5 years ago. Sometimes we got to be careful what we pray for ...

Sunday, December 20, 2015

CoCoICHIBANYA - The Curry House

[Media Invite + Giveaway]

The latest outlet at Plaza Singapura (#03-73)
CoCoICHIBANYA is not a new restaurant in Singapore. In fact I have had lunch over at their restaurant in Bugis+ quite a number of times already. My colleagues and myself love their pickled radish, which is absolutely delish! However as I am always the economical one always, I never really got to try another other stuff except for their ebi fry curry rice, which is my favorite! I finally got the chance to, when they had opened their 5th branch over at Plaza Singapura recently and we were lucky enough to to be invited to a tasting session recently. It was then I realized what I had been missing from my past visits to the outlet!

We would've have tried even more stuff if only our stomach had bigger capacity! But no regrets having the chicken wings, wagyu beef and grilled beef! 
The Pork Cutlet Omelet that was too pretty to eat.
The crispy chicken wings were just nice as appetisers!
Would have had the grilled squid with curry rice also but no space in stomach, thus having it ala carte. Fresh and chewy! 
I finally got to try all 5 levels of hotness! Taking a sip or two is ok, but I cannot imagine having a whole plate of level 5 as my main! I will probably be bloated by the end of my meal, from drinking water!
CoCoICHIBANYA actually serves some mean wagyu steak and their grilled squids are quite nice too! I also got to try out all the 5 different levels of their curry sauce, which is now made from vegetarian stock instead of beef. I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference of the curry now from before if I hadn't been informed beforehand. They tasted just as tasty. Just a warning to those who doesn't take even a little spiciness, their level 1 is -already enough to pack a punch for the uninitiated!

Ended the dinner with their special Green Tea Cheesecake! Loved the matcha, aromatic yet not overpowering! 
Matcha ice-cream with red beans! The standard Japanese choice.
Christmas is coming and we have 5 sets of $10 vouchers to giveaway to our readers thanks to CoCoICHIBANYA! All you need to do is to follow the steps below before 2359hrs on 24 Dec 2015 for a chance to win -

1) Like and Follow The "Perfect" Father;
2) Like and Follow CoCoICHIBANYA;
3) Like and Share this FB post publicly; and
4) Tag your friends (responsibly) whom you would like to to bring along under the comment section of the FB post.

Student Promotion

Oh and for you young ones out there who are still students, you do get to enjoy 15% off when you present your student card. Valid between 3pm - 6pm, from Mon - Fri. I guess I need to bring Steffi along next time!

Useful Information 

  • Facebook: 
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  • Website: https;/
  • Twitter:

  • The new CoCoICHIBANYA outlet is located at 68 Orchard Road, Plaza Singapura #03-73, (S)238839. Contact No.: Tel: 62387539 Fax: 62387540

    Opening hours for all CoCoICHIBANYA outlets:

    Sun – Thur: 10am to 10pm 
    Fri – Sat: 10am to 11pm 
    *Last order is 30 minutes before closing time.   

    Other Outlets
    • 313 Somerset 313 Orchard Road #B3-25/27 (S)238895 Tel: 6636 7280 Fax: 6636 7280 
    • Bugis+ 201 Victoria Street #01-10 (S)188067 Tel: 6341 9978 Fax: 6341 9836 
    • The Star Vista 1 Vista Exchange Green #02-06 (S)138617 Tel: 6570 2457 Fax: 6570 2084 
    • Westgate 3 Gateway Drive #01-02 (S)608532 Tel: 6710 7062 Fax: 6710 7073 

    Saturday, December 19, 2015

    Fatherhood. Because of Love.

    [Sponsored Post]

    I had never imagined myself to be a father of four. I knew I wanted to have kids after I got married, but it never crossed my mind that I would have four kiddos and in such quick succession. 

    Knowing how the world has changed, I have never expected the kiddos to provide for me when I grow old. Seriously who dares to bank on the kids supporting them at old age these days? Horror stories of children abandoning their parents when they are old and sick is no longer new or shocking. So what exactly got into me that made me take this gamble, this great leap of faith into fatherhood, multiple times no less. 

    I always had the great honor of holding my babies (Louie here) first over the wife
    It must have been the pleasant experiences I had with each of the kids. The warm fuzzy feeling I felt when I held them in my arms from the moment they were born, to the proud moment when they started to walk and learnt to call me daddy! They were exactly how I would have wanted my kiddos to be like, and it was through them, that I realized love at first sight, was indeed possible! They made me whole, and gave me a meaningful purpose in life. 

    Parenting had also evolved. Nowadays it is no longer the case of the husband working while the wife stays at home to look after the kids. Our mindset has to change. It is the norm for both parents to be working these days to help cope with the rising cost of raising kids, and yet fathers are also more involved in day-to-day care of the kids and are as hands-on as mothers! But the more involved one is with parenting, the more rewarding it is too. I had embraced fatherhood, and it was the best decision I had made in my life!

    Everywhere we went, we went with the kiddos. I couldn’t really imagine anywhere without the wacky kiddos and the wife!
    Speaking from my own experience, once we had the kiddos, my life is no longer mine alone. I am a very calculative person when it comes to spending money, even on myself. I will think twice about having that add-on to my lunch or even that drink upgrade unless it's really worth it. And yet when the kiddos give me that longing look for something I knew in my heart, that will be replaced by something else in no time, I will still cave in occasionally. I want them to be happy, and to be about to enjoy their childhood, and I scrimp and save for that purpose. A bout of illness a few years back required me to go for more thorough checkup. It was during that trying period that I learnt it wasn't the illness or even death that I truly feared. It was really what would happen to my children and my wife should the anything happen to me that I fear. I was lucky my fears were unfounded then, just lucky.

    That had been many unforgettable moments I had with each of my kids and it was only recently that one happened. We had a late dinner with friends in town and I had to take the MRT back on my own because my whole family couldn't fit into a friend's car even though he wanted to give us a lift. After I bade the wife and kids farewell and as I made my way to the MRT station, I suddenly heard someone shouting daddy! It was my eldest, Steffi. She caught up with me and grabbed my arms. As we walked into MRT station, I asked her why she followed and she replied ever so softly, "I know you are sad, because you had to take the MRT alone while the rest of the family enjoys the ride back." Even typing this out now brought tears to my eyes. She knows me best.

    Steffi, my firstborn always knew the way to my heart with her thoughtful words and actions
    It is moments like this that make me feel whatever sacrifices I need to make for the family, totally worth it! Do you have any special moments with your kiddos that you would like to share? Do so over at Tokio Marine Insurance Group Singapore Facebook Page, and stand a chance to win $200 Takashimaya shopping vouchers too! 

    To participate in this contest: 
    1. Like Tokio Marine Insurance Group Singapore Facebook Page; and
    2. Submit a photo of a “Special Moment” you shared with your child or your Dad, along with a caption of fewer than 30 words HERE with hashtag #TMDadTalk  
    A total 5 winners will be selected and announced on Tokio Marine Facebook Page on 23 December. Remember to send in your entry before 2359hrs on Tue, 22 Dec 2015!

    Monday, December 14, 2015

    3M Hello Kitty Anti-Slip Stickers

    [Product Review]

    I was wearing slippers out yesterday when it rained. Was walking along the wet pavement and everything felt alright, until I stepped onto the smooth surface of the wet granite floor and almost fell! Got the fright of my life and it was only then I remembered I had a pack of Anti-Slip Floor Stickers from 3M that I have yet to stick on my bathroom tiles! 3M sent me the full kit just in case I couldn’t get it right! Lol. 

    Let me take you through the easy steps to make your bathroom slip-proof and Hello-Kittified at the same time -

    The pack consist of 3M Sharpshooter™ Tough Stain and Grease Remover to get rid of any dirt or stains.  Scotch-Brite™ Powerpad 2000 to scrub away any tough stains and a microfiber wipe to clean up prior to affixing the stickers!
    1) Clean the surface you wish to fix the stickers on. Remove all obvious dirt!
    2) Use Grease Remover to thoroughly clean the tiles so that the stickers can stick better!
    3) Use Scotch-Brite™ Powerpad 2000 and say goodbye to any tough stains.
    4) Now that few tiles looked so much cleaner than the rest. Hee hee!
    5) If there are any liquid that needs to be wiped away, you can use the 3M microfiber wipe.
    6) Get ready the stickers!
    7) Lay the stickers down on the tiles and arrange them according to your desired outcome. The stickers are easy to peel and fix!
    8) The final desired outcome! The toilet is official Hello-Kittified and the kiddos can look at them when doing business! No fears of slipping from now on!
    Thank you 3M for the love! And for all you Hello Kitty fans out there, these stickers are retailing at $24.00 at POPULAR and selected NTUC outlets now for a limited period only! More product information here!

    Sunday, December 13, 2015

    First Time Visit to Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove

    [Media Visit + Giveaway]

    There is Clarke Quay where tourists like to hang out at the various bars and restaurants and then there’s Boat Quay where yours truly loved to party when I was still in my teens, but I have no idea how the place is doing now since I do not venture much beyond my own neighborhood these days. And I had never been to Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove, not until our recent invite. I didn’t even know it existed and when I didn’t get much information from Streetdirectory on how to get there, and ended up having to ask our host for directions! 

    In any case, Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove is really just in the east of Sentosa, near Sentosa Cove to be exact. The most economical way to get there would be to take public transport to Vivocity, walk over the boardwalk to Sentosa Island as there is free entry, take the free monorail to Beach Station and then transfer to bus number 3 which runs every 30mins. Take in the sights while you walk slowly, otherwise you can choose to go in direct by taxi and pay the admissions fees as required. Check here for more directional information.

    Having a nice Blue Moon Burger under the shade, overlooking the yachts is simply relaxing!
    Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove is basically two long rows of restaurants serving a wide range of cuisines ranging from French, Italian, Belgian, Chinese, Western, Greek, Thai and more. The pricing of these restaurants would be similar to what one have to pay in town, but with the fantastic view of the yachts berthed at One15 Marina Club while having a meal, really evokes the feeling of being overseas and is absolutely relaxing! 

    The "B" Burger - Aged beef patty with caramelized onions, cheese and topped with garlic mayo. 

    And Stacci can't wait to devour her kid's burger that came with a side of fries.
    Look at the thickness of the patty. 
    Profiteroles de “L’Entrecôte” - Vanilla bean ice-cream profiteroles with hot chocolate sauce.
    Look at the goodies we had! Including sundaes and churros! Dessert heaven no less!
    The first place we went to was &Made Burger Bistro L’Entrecôte Express at #01-03, a place to find gourmet burgers, truffle fries and delicious desserts such as sundaes, churros and profiteroles! I always had the thinking that a fulfilling meal should consists of rice so that I can feel full, but these burgers pack a punch and would really take a little effort to finish! They have flavors such as Tandoori Chicken, N.Y. Bacon and Lamb that we are no strangers to. I personally loved the Lamb, but do not attempt that if you do not like the smell of lamb! All the burger patties are thick and juicy! Note that all burgers are served ala-carte with add-ons like fries and onion rings. [Update: The restaurant had ceased operations w.e.f. Feb 2017]

    Prawn and Green Mango Relish with Rice Crackers.
    Green Papaya Salad, a great started to a Thai meal!
    Deep Fried Prawn Spring Rolls, a favorite of the kiddos!
    The first time we tasted Watermelon Fried Rice. Full of ingredients and yummy too!
    The Thai-Style Grilled Pork Belly. Dip into the accompanying sauce and it will be awesome!
    Stir-Fried Squid with Runny Salted Egg
    Kang Ob Woon Sen - Crayfish with Vermicelli in Claypot.
    Mango with Black Sticky Rice.
    Next up, we tried some Thai food at Gin Khao Bistro at #01-12. The way I read the name sounds something like “very thick” in Hokkien. We had the Tom Yum Seafood which was really sweet and spicy, and would really whet up one’s appetite. Some notable dishes from the bistro would be their Stir-Fried Squid with Runny Salted Egg, a twist to the usual deep-fried salted egg squid dish. The squid was nice and chewy while the salted egg was simply delish! There’s also the Thai-Style Grilled Pork Belly with just that right thickness, and oozing with juiciness! Pair it with the sauce and it will be just nice, without the oiliness feeling. Some other interesting stuff would be their Special Watermelon Fried Rice, a twist to our usual pineapple fried rice, and the Thai Ice Coffee, naturally sweetened with Coconut Juice, a refreshing drink for coffee lovers indeed. 

    Now that we had finally visited Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove, we would like to treat you, our readers to a $100 Quayside Isle voucher to spend there as well! It would be a nice place to bring the whole family for a relaxing meal, away from the hustle and bustle of town. All you need to do, is to complete the following steps before 2359hrs on Sun, 20 Dec 2015 –

    1) Like and Follow The "Perfect" Father;
    2) Like and Share this photo post publicly; and
    3) Comment and Tag your friends responsibly under the comments of the post.

    A great meal with awesome peeps. Remember to take part in our giveaway! 
    Our friends over at BPDG Travels is also hosting a giveaway too! So hop over to double your chances at winning!