Landscape Idea

Check out Columbus Paver Patios. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a place to hang out, to smell the roses, to work outside on the laptop while your children run around in the lawn? Who wouldn’t want such a serene and relaxed environment in their own yard, right?

For now I can only imagine having the privilege to lounge like that since we live in an intermediate terrace house with limited front yard.

Our current front yard comes in poured concrete courtesy of the housing developer. The neighbors have put outdoor tiles and gravel on theirs before they moved in many years ago.

It has been almost 6 years since we moved in yet we are still thinking when and how to renovate our front yard. Finding a reliable contractor that can make the mini patio fast is another issue. Most of the local contractors drag their work week after week which I find really ridiculous.

There’s also different type of floor materials to be considered. Like I said, some people prefer gravel and outdoor tiles while others go for timber decking, stones or concrete pavers.

For a person who likes to do gardening like me, I think using tiles or stone will be slippery when wet especially since I like to water my plants at least 2 times a day. For tropical weather, we also have to consider the heat absorption rate. Wood would be the most cooling but could it last during rainy season?

And then the matter of design and style of the patio pavers. Should it be rustic or formal? And the design on how the pavers should be laid – basket weave pattern or running bond? Herringbone or jack-on-jack?

Of course if you have found a good contractor to start with, all these planning issues will be solved quickly.

Oh, I am also thinking to have additional feature like pergola so that my plants of flowering vines can climb.

Check out this amazing Rangoon creeper. It took me almost 2 years to wait for it to start blooming. Rangoon creeper is the type of plants with flowering vines that twine and climb when provided with support from a trellis or arbor.

For the time being I just let it climbs over the wall that has our post box and garbage bin.

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Red Roses For 2015

For those who have been following my story in this blog might notice that somehow in 2012 I got involved with rose gardening..heh!

I collected more than 30 different roses and now in 2015, only one is still alive.

I am still contemplating whether to revive the hobby or not. It is such a joy whenever the roses bloom.

For now, I have moved on to easier flowers like sunflowers and zinnias.

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Movie Night

My eldest son has been showing interest whenever we watch movie at home. Of course being an autistic person, he can’t grab the basic idea on why the person is crying when the other character dies, things like that. At first we were frustrated and even sad that he couldn’t understand crucial expression like that, but then it’s not his fault, his brain is wired that way.

So I try to be patient and explain it to him in the easy, possible way that his mind could understand.

It is said that autistic person lives in a world of their own, yes, that’s true. And they don’t empathize and sympathize.

Do you know what the word sympathize means?

intransitive verb sym┬Ěpa┬Ěthize \?sim-p?-?th?z\
to feel sorry for someone who is in a bad situation : to feel sympathy for someone because you understand that person’s problems

How can you feel sympathy when you can’t even understand what’s going on, let alone to realize that the other person is having problem.

The normal neurotypical people have the social skills and the ability to read between the lines, interpret the facial expressions or understand the tones of the voice (angry, grumpy, happy, funny) but for autistic person, they just don’t have that kind of abilities unless it was taught to them.

So our movie night is more like another session of behaviour therapy..heh! But despite the pause, explain, play during the movie, we did manage to complete the whole saga of Star Wars, thanks to a friend who gave him Star Wars Lego for his last birthday and sparked his interest.

Oh, this movie? I didn’t pause, explain and play. But I love most of the quotes. Gotta find the book and read it some time this year.

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Quiet Time

At times I love being a mom..well, the part that you are loved and needed all day long, even at night (when you have a breastfeeding infant). But I also crave the ME time and the quiet time.

As a crafter by passion, I need the quiet time so that I can think creatively. You can’t come out with anything beautiful when everything is chaotic. So when I have the extra energy to wake up early after the morning feeding session, I really appreciate the quiet time and the ME time.

It doesn’t matter if I don’t manage to do anything crafty during that precious length of time, as long as I am on my own, enjoying the lack of children noise..heh!

Like today, I took out the garbage because Monday is garbage collecting day in this neighborhood. And then I bring out the laundry line out in the sun. I water the plants and even spray them with diluted fertilizer.

I decided to cut down the effort of making hot Milo and opt for the cold boxed one from the fridge.

And then I switch on this laptop and start checking the emails and see the stats of this blog.

I transfer the images from my smart phone to the storage in this laptop in case something happen to my phone and I will lost all the priceless pictures of my children.

And then the baby starts to cry..well, there goes the quiet time. Till later, readers :)

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Homeschooling With A Baby

The birthday party went well, despite a few glitches here and there. I am yet to edit the pictures. And yes, I managed to get the pinata hanged and pulled for the birthday boy, with help from nieces and (future) nephew :)

BTW, as the party progressed and a friend back from University time came, she did ask about how I manage to home school my eldest while having a baby on tow.

Most people have this idea that homeschooling is like conducting class like in school but you do it in your own house.

The truth is you don’t do routine and rigid classes like that in real homeschooling or should I say, unschooling.

Everyday I wake up, tired and most of the time grumpy because of the lack of sleep, or how many time I have to wake up breastfeeding, comforting a teething baby or changing his diapers. Do you think I will have the energy to conduct a proper lesson like in school for his older brother? Definitely not.

Furthermore even if my son knows how to read at this age, I am not sure he will understand what he is reading. Mind you, my son is autistic, on the PDD NOS spectrum, so the idea of him being able to read at his age now is really a novelty. Even if his physical age is 6, I think his mental and intelligence is like 4 year old. And what do you expect from a 4 year old child, finish reading the box set of Harry Potter books?

At times I do feel the pressure and the guilt of not doing much (if I were to compare to others who send their children to kindy), but then I ponder to the time when I was his age, I think I didn’t learn that much in kindergarten ( I went to Chinese kindy for 2 years with me being the sole Malay girl in the class).

For now I just want him to learn as much as life skills possible, like to be able to go to pee and poop in public toilet without being naked and jumping around, to help take care of his younger brother while Mama is trying to get a quick shower, to understand the true meaning of sympathy and empathy, to know that others have needs and wants, like when he has to be quiet since Adik needs to take nap.

The academic has to wait for now. And I have to persevere. It’s tough, it really is. Thus why RM284 per month for normal kid to go to kindy is actually nothing if you compare to effort and energy you have to put in homeschooling.

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