What my child will remember about me

One thing I wasn’t warned about Primary School was the number of school holidays my daughter was getting when she entered Primary One. You see back when Sophie was a preschooler, she attended a full day childcare where they had the usual public holiday closures and 6, 7 days of centre closures for centre cleaning, teachers training, etc. It was all good for me as a working mum because it means she’s well cared and I didn’t have to worry about making alternative arrangements.

Now that’s she’s in Primary School, we have extra days of school holidays from term breaks in March and September, school holidays in June, November and December. Then there’s also school closures for post National Day, post Deepavali, PTC, and this week school’s out for 4 days due to PSLE marking days.

I know Sophie is certainly not complaining, because no school and no classes. Since Primary Ones get to escape the dreaded year end exams (a huge relief), she’s likely going to bury herself in lots of reading plus tv and play time at grandma’s place. 

But what these extended school breaks mean for working parents like you and me is more meticulous planning of our annual leave. I hear you too that my annual leave is just never enough especially when our kids enter primary one since the childcare leave entitlement gets cut from 6 days to 2 days. 

The things my child will remember

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I know it’s easy to tell our kids that mummy and daddy got to work that’s why we can’t be with them during the school holidays. But please don’t ever tell them it’s because that’s how we get money to buy them the latest toy or take them on holidays because I know for a fact they’ll rather trade that toy or holiday for dad and mum to be with them.

Between hubby and I, we try our best to take leave whenever school’s close to take Sophie out because we know it means the world to her. I know much is said about having quality time that makes up for quantity time but sometimes it just doesn’t measure up.

Work is no doubt important but what matters more is that I want my daughter to know she’s significant too. And for that she’s always very appreciative whenever we take leave to spend time with her and create precious memories in her childhood where mummy and daddy are never far away.

Cheat sheet on where to go when school’s out

On the past few occasions, we’ve taken her ice skating at Kallang Ice World in Kallang Leisure Park which we absolutely loved as it was a much needed respite from our crazy hot weather.

Sophie was a real champ going from a total noob to skating independently after just 2 hour. I just love watching her in action as her initial apprehension turns to confidence as she skate with ease and even high fioves me for another accomplishment unlocked.

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Channeling her inner Else while ice skating at Kallang Ice World

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Two weeks ago, we took her bowling at Orchid Bowl in SAFRA Punggol on Children’s Day because according to her, it would be a crime if we didn’t celebrate it with her :P.

Thanks to my friend’s recommendation, we found out that they carry bowling balls that were just 5 pounds, making them very suitable for children. Plus they have the most adorable games to keep score where you get to “dress” your monster.

There were other variation of game scores but we were happy with this and any thing that makes the little one tick. Oh but I gotta add that Sophie had muscle aches the next day and asked for massages, so go easy  on the bowling.

Besides bowling, you can also take the kids to Splash @ Kidz Amaze, an indoor water playground where water play can happen rain or shine. Or how about karaoke at Manekineko, where you may just discover your kid’s singing prowess.

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Bowling at Orchid Bowl in SAFRA Punggol

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Another time, I took these two on the Circle Line to hunt for tape art at Sixth Avenue. It’s a part of Singapore that we rarely venture to but I’m glad they were game for a little adventure and even obliged with lots of hilarious poses which I shall not embarrass them with on the blog.


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Rocking it!

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As for this week, she’ll be mostly at grandma’s place but I’ve made plans to take her to KidZania with some friends and I hope she enjoys it since she didn’t have any company on her first visit.

The best childhood memories I had, were the moments when my parents were there

I hope that all these little seemingly small thing  creates the best kind of childhood memories for Sophie, one that held her hand when she learnt to skate, one that cheered her when she first bowled, one that had bedtime stories told by mummy, one that had crazy awesome prata tower with her, one that laughed with her, cried with her and most importantly, one where I was right there for her.

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Comments: 23

  1. Adora @ Life is for Exploring October 17, 2016 at 2:28 pm Reply

    Nice post, Susan. I also did not realise that there would be so many off days in Primary School! It’s sometimes tricky when the kids don’t get the same days off! I also spent all my holidays with my grandma, not doing anything in particular, and that reminds me that sometimes, just letting kids enjoy quiet ‘boring’ days at home is wonderful too. I often make the mistake of planing huge outings whenever possible but one day Miss 8 simply said “Mama, can we just have a stay home day today? We don’t have to go out all the time, you know”. Hehe. So yes, just spending time together doing ‘nothing’ can be nice too 🙂

    • Susan October 18, 2016 at 8:58 pm Reply

      Aren’t we all guilty of that at times? We managed to shift Sophie’s Berries class to a weekday and now our Saturday are freed up to just hang out together with no agenda and it feels so right 🙂

  2. Madeline Heng October 18, 2016 at 10:02 am Reply

    As a fellow FTWM myself, i can relate with this post. Although for my girl, I tell her I need to work so that she can go to Disneyland and Universal Studios and she usually agrees and has never asked me to stop working haha (I think I passed her the Disney and travel bug hehe). But that reminds me, I need to bring my girl to ice-skate! She’s been bugging me to and I haven’t for the longest time =)

    • Susan October 18, 2016 at 8:47 pm Reply

      I used to tell her that mummy needs to work so that we can go on holidays too but these days they don’t work anymore. Your girl will enjoy ice skating. J Cube is nearer for you?

  3. Pooja Kawatra Gupta October 21, 2016 at 2:08 pm Reply

    I am experiencing all these extended holidays in P1 and P2, home based learning, PSLE marking off and definitely difficult to keep them engaged.

  4. Lyn Lee October 21, 2016 at 2:42 pm Reply

    I feel you! I do think you are a super involved, mindful, reflective parent and that’s what counts. Not the actual minutes we clock with them.
    What has made it easier for me is that when I ask my kids whether they would rather I stay home like some of their friends’ mums or whether I should continue working, they say they are happy to have me work. I suppose that’s a reflection of how well taken care of they are by our ‘village’.
    Sometimes I ask them when they become mamas, whether they’d like to be working outside, or be like some of their friends’ mums in bringing the kids to school etc, and both say they’d like to work, just like mummy. Aww, sure sets my heart at rest for now, even if they decide differently in future!

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:52 am Reply

      That’s an affirmation that you’re doing a good job Lyn. Sometimes we question if our kids are okay without us, but knowing that they are so understanding really sets our heart at peace.

  5. Cherry Syjongtian C October 21, 2016 at 5:13 pm Reply

    I always try to remind myself that as long as our kids feel so much loved by us (working parents), we have nothing else to worry about. What really matters is how the kids find us to be the best parents in the world despite not being there physically with them all the time.
    http://www.sweetmemoirs.com

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:49 am Reply

      That’s very true Cherry. My girl is pretty understanding and she knows mummy will spend time with her in the evenings and on weekends.

  6. Andy Lee October 21, 2016 at 11:45 pm Reply

    Love this post! Kids do not remember the venues, as much as our presence.
    Spend more time with them before they suddenly grow up 🙂

    cheers, Andy
    (SengkangBabies.com)

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:48 am Reply

      That’s what I have to remind myself too.

  7. Debs G October 22, 2016 at 1:30 pm Reply

    I hear it! It’s the quality time that counts, not quantity.

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:48 am Reply

      Both matter but if I have to choose, I’ll choose quality over quantity.

  8. Michelle October 22, 2016 at 5:15 pm Reply

    I hear you. As a work from home mum, I too struggle between work and really spending time with the kids. I don’t want them growing up remembering mummy puts work before them. Thanks for sharing about the light Bowling ball. We’ll probably go soon!

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:47 am Reply

      Have fun and if bowling is not their thing then I’m sure the Amaze indoor water playground will be so much fun!

  9. Winnie October 23, 2016 at 2:06 am Reply

    Yup… Holidays are great for the kids, but can be a pain to think about ideas to entertain them. We went to Kallang for ice skating too, and it was great fun. My girls keeps asking to go back, so I guess it was a pleasant memory for her.

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:47 am Reply

      It must have been, so what are you waiting for 🙂

  10. David Sim October 24, 2016 at 7:30 pm Reply

    Thanks for sharing Susan….honestly I miss those days and I’m glad you’re cherishing every bit of it. I always say that our kids are only kids once…and as for us, we are only young once too….

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:33 am Reply

      Yes, time flies when they are young and we should do what we can to avoid regrets.

  11. Ai Sakura October 25, 2016 at 4:07 pm Reply

    Ya hubby and I were just talking about how many more school holidays Lil Pumpkin has this year!! haha… luckily between the both of us, we can still manage with her being home more too and honestly, I love that they get more free time too and aren’t that stressed in school.. yet? 😛

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

    • Susan October 28, 2016 at 1:32 am Reply

      Yes, come Pri 3, they will be busy with classes after school and CCAs. So must let them cherish their free time now too.

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