Tuesday, 9 October 2018

The Great Moscow Cricus returns!

Direct from Moscow and the circus capitals of the world comes this year’s heart-pounding family spectacular – THE GREAT MOSCOW CIRCUS. Boasting the world’s most dangerous and death-defying acts, including the Wheel of Death and the Motorbike Sphere of Fear, THE GREAT MOSCOW CIRCUS sees the mighty red and white circus big top transformed into an astonishing, high octane, fun-filled entertainment destination. 

Photo source: Sliding Doors Entertainment

THE GREAT MOSCOW CIRCUS, returns to Singapore for the first time in over 10 years, with over 45 performers – acrobats, clowns, jugglers, daredevils – all circus stars renowned world-wide for their theatrical flair and breath-taking talents.

Circus doesn’t get much wilder than this!

Photo source: Sliding Doors entertainment

Here are some fun facts about the red and white Great Moscow Circus:
  • The Great Moscow Circus Big Top is a far cry from the canvas tents of old.
  • The ‘traditional’ large tents, commonly known as ‘Big Tops’ were introduced in the mid-19th century.
  • The Great Moscow circus million-dollar tent was specially created for the Singapore season by leading Italian tent manufacturers and took several months to build.
  • It is brand new and packed into 7 x 40ft containers.
  • This Big Top stands at about 17 metres high and is 40 metres in diameter.
  • It is supported by 4 steel masts, known as King Poles, that each stand at 18.5 metres high.
  • The raising requires a team of approximately 20 people to raise the 4 King Poles and the more than 130 side poles and 250 tent pegs to secure the structure.
  • The Big Top can accommodate 1,600 people per show in all chair seating.
  • The ring is 10 meters in diameter and no audience member will ever be more than 11 meters from the action so every seat provides a great view of this spectacular show.
  • The entire site set-up includes installation of the Big Top, Foyer Tent and dressing room tent.

Book from now to 12 Oct (2359hrs) to get 25% off ticket prices! Offer applicable to shows from 25 October to 2 November on Ringside to D Reserve tickets. 

Feeling the excitement already?!! We think this circus makes a great treat for the whole family of young and old. You will be delighted to know child (3 to 12 years old) and senior citizen (60 years old above) rates are available. A good opportunity to bring the village for circus entertainment! This is one circus without animals, and you know a circus without animals makes it a more worthy support. Animals belong to the wild and zoo, not for circus. 

Get your tickets here


Event Date
25 Oct - 18 Nov 2018 Tue - Fri: 7.30pm
Sat: 12pm, 4pm & 7.30pm
Sun: 11am & 3pm
Public Holiday: 12pm & 4pm

Under the Mighty Big Top 
Bayfront Avenue
Beside Marina Bay Sands

The BIG TOP TENT is fully air conditioned and seats are elevated, and tiered, for patron comfort.
Ticket Pricing
(Excludes Booking Fee)
Standard : S$155, S$145, S$135, S$115, S$95, S$85, S$65
Child [3 to 12 years old]* : S$135, S$125, S$105, S$85, S$75, S$55
Senior Citizen [60 years and above]: S$135, S$125, S$105, S$85, S$75, S$55
Restricted View : S$85, S$65
Restricted View (Child) [3 to 12 years old]* : S$75, S$55
Restricted View (Senior Citizen) [60 years and above] : S$75, S$55

*All children must be accompanied by a parent or a guardian

Monday, 8 October 2018

The Storey Treehouse book series

The Storey Treehouse is a book series written by author Andy Griffiths and illustrated by Terry Denton. Andy Griffiths is one of Australia's most popular children's authors. His award winning treehouse series is published in more than 30 countries since 2011.  To date, there already 7 books published.
  • The 13-Storey Treehouse (2011)
  • The 26-Storey Treehouse (2012)
  • The 39-Storey Treehouse (2013)
  • The 52-Storey Treehouse (2014)
  • The 65-Storey Treehouse (2015)
  • The 78-Storey Treehouse (2016)
  • The 91-Storey Treehouse (2017)
  • The 104-Storey Treehouse (2018)

Some of Js collection

And you can tell, the treehouse is built additionally with 13 storey upon each published book. 13 times table. Js have been reading and following this series since the first book. And here's what they have to say about the series:

"Terry and Andy are the owners of this amazing treehouse. Their treehouse has a chocolate waterfall, lemonade fountain, bowling alley, see through swimming, automatic marshmallow machine and many awesome features you can imagine. This treehouse definitely sends every boy and girl green with envy. Terry and Andy make books in this treehouse. They go on plenty of wild adventure while struggling to get their books to their nosy publisher boss, Mr Big Nose. With help from their friends and machines, they always manage to get the book to Mr Big Nose's office on time. This many storey treehouse is never dull! You will definitely wish to live there too."

Excerpt from 52 Storey Treehouse

Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton's fantastically funny Storey Treehouse series is told through a combination of text and cartoon-style illustrations. Plenty of illustrations. It is light and of good fit for any emergent readers, or any child who needs a coax to reading. It is a great introduction for kids into the world of chapter books. Though it looks rather large at 200 to 300 pages, they are full of illustrations, and there is never a page filled solely with words. 

Excerpt from 91 Storey Treehouse

If your child loves Diary of a wimpy kid or Captain underpants books. He will love this series, also filled with intense humour.

Here is the good news for Andy Grirriths fans, or little ones who want to know more about his books. Andy will be in Singapore to share about the 13 new levels added in the 104-storey treehouse! Join him for a time of 'treehouse tour' and be the first 50 to receive a goodie bag.

DATE: 14 October 2018 (Sunday)

11:30AM at Popular Bras Basah Complex (POP@CENTRAL)
3:30PM at Kinokuniya (L4, Takashimaya)

Mark your calendar!

We have a set of Treehouse Fun book 1 and 2 to one giveaway to ONE winner. These fun books are filled with activities like creating your own treehouse levels, imagine some amazing ice-cream flavours, spot the difference, find your way out of the Maze of Doom and answer treehouse trivia. Good fun to keep your child quietly occupied.

To win a set, simply hop over at our Instagram account @mumscalling for easy entry details.

Disclaimer: We were blessed with 2 books for the purpose of this review. All opinions are solely ours. 

Saturday, 22 September 2018

Grades can define a future

Jazz was studying for her Chinese ting xie when my brother came to tell her, "No need to study so hard, it is okay to have a low PSLE score." Then proceeded to tell us of all the social media shares on #lifebeyondgrades. Before I can start fuming at her uncle, Jazz responded, "It is not actually okay you know, jiu jiu." Glad she got the concept of studying right.

Revising her 默写 while brushing

#lifebeyondgrades campaign is a good intention. But honestly, I couldn't bring myself to say grades is not everything. Yes, they are some inspirational testimonies shared, but what works for others may not work for us. What touches most would be stories of how good grades can get one out of poverty.

What is life beyond grades when our children is a journey of no map? They have no concrete idea of what lays ahead. Let us not deny having good grades help us feel safe in the uncertainties ahead.

Our best bet as a school going child, is still good grades.

What are acceptable grades? 
Saying grades don't define us may not be entirely true. I have 3 classes of thoughts for this:
1. Those who have worked hard with their best, but DID NOT achieve a high score.
2. Those who have worked hard with their best, AND achieved high score.
3. And those who DO NOT study, simply because they are not bothered about outcome.

Which is/are the most worrying group/s in terms of stress? I think classes 1 and 2 may require our guidance on expectations and time management, but more tenderly, we want to keep a look out for those who have put in so much, but ended with an undesired score.

We want to be encouraging and accepting.

Class 3 has probably not seen the light of studying. They may have belatedly realised hard work and rewards are co-related. Sharing successes of low scoring testimonies is a worrying factor for group 3. It makes them want to snuggle in their nests longer. 

And this, class 1. If you tell those who have worked hard to achieve grade success that life is beyond grades. It sounds unjustified to all their hard work.

Juggling it all!

PSLE is not a defining exam, it is just a milestone to another long journey ahead. Exams should keep the family and community united, regardless the outcome.

We should celebrate and support those who have worked hard and put in their best effort. And for those who have not seen light in studying, so be it. It is fair too, to say our child is not strong in academics to begin with. Look beyond that, they will have some skill set or academic path to develop on. He is not out of the system, just that another pathway may be better. Whether Express, normal academic, normal technical, DSA, IP or re-sitting their PSLE, there are different pathways to help them cope better. We do have arts and sports school too.

We must believe in late bloomers.

Managing the education system
Trust the system. It is through it that can we better assess our children to find a mould that fits them. No one will be left behind.

I am a Mum concerned about not just with character development, but grades too (Read on). No, they don't have to be the cream of the crop. It is basic discipline! Managing school work is a good skill developed young. And these are the ages best to inculcate good study habits. Unless yes, if my child has learning disability that requires aid out of mainstream school, that will be a different story.

Grades are nothing if we have one terrible behaviour. We have more to gain than lose by bringing up children of good educational results and of wonderful personality. Our society of their generation will be beautiful. Whether low income or high income families, we just need a thing is common to move up. The severe hunger for knowledge. Nothing is at disadvantage.

We do not do any academic enrichment. It is more important to protect their free time for play.

Big sister helping younger brother with work

Education consumes almost 1/4 of our life expectancy. It will be wiser to join the system, if you can't beat the system. Unless you really detest it so much, that you have already got a migration plan in place or a stack of money ready for overseas education. It is because of our system that Singaporean workers are highly sought after in most countries. I count it our blessing to be living here, with my children doing a world class education at an extremely affordable fee. If you are a Singaporean.

There is no perfect system because imperfect people exists.

The change
The PSLE scoring in 2021 will be based on achievement level, somewhat like 'O' level. Doing away with the T score. This is said to meet more on learning objectives than having children focused on trying to outdo their peers. That is another move to eliminate grades stress. How effective will it be? I somehow remember my PSLE score better than my 'O' level results. Less emphasis right?

The coping
I find school highly manageable if we impart the skill of independent learning, and ingrain the habit of disciplined work in them. That is of course I only have up to P3 to speak for. Do not fully believe one who has not been there. 

Consistency is a best key. Together with the kids, we put in daily time for bite sized work and revision. Saturday is mostly our sabbath day, where we focus only on rest. No classes, no work. It is not easy to teach our own child, but if we can find time to send them in and out of classes, we have time to teach. It is unreasonable too, to penalise parents on academic enrichment. We all have different family dynamics. 

I shared Jazz's schedule previously. Sad to say, that schedule is back in routine. She is back to competitive training for gym. And if you ask, must she gym? I say that is what she loves. I cannot imagine piling her up with tuition of additional worksheets. That would leave her almost no time for play and the stuff she loves.

Schedule that needs a change

Last week, I made the call to halt Jazz's violin lessons. I was worried for her mental and physical when she sounded upset with the heavy load of school work.
Have an open communication channel with our children. Look out for distressing signs and be quick to intervene. Rejig their schedule if you need to. We play an extremely important role of managing their mental state, for as long as we can. Even up till their University years. The ultimate stress is yet seen at 12 years old.

Stress comes in angles of 360 degrees. Not just from academics. We must remember to play and relax at every opportunity. Our kids love play dates!

Grades Don't Define Us?
So, if you tell a consistently hardworking child and parent that grades aren't everything and it doesn't define a future, we feel poked. That is the basic responsibility and purpose of being a student. Why would anyone bother to study hard if they can live a successful life beyond grades? Leave that to the children born into the rich and royalty. The best insurance for now is to do their best in achieving good grades. We have progressed! We do not have jobs of farmers, fishermen or miners today, we do need good grades for wider door of opportunities.

And studying the nature of some kids, which may be brought into adulthood, the introverts and shy are less likely to talk their way across or up to achievements. If you agree, gift of gab can add favour to life and PR you to the right people. Having good grades can prove more than an ability.

Being a stay home Mum today is not one that I foresee. I may joke that my best skill and knowledge to date is my driver's license, but the years I had behind books is no wasted knowledge. My kids know they can look up to me for help in schoolwork. But actually, if I could turn back time, I would work harder to achieve more in academic. Just so there was wider options when I stepped into the job market decades ago.

Having a degree is too common in today's world.

Most times, it really is the innate perfection of a child acting up, much more than our environment. We do not want to unknowingly bring across that perfect grade is a goal.

Love is Unconditional
Remember, when we first became parents, we discovered that love is unconditional. We know in midst of the many failures and disappointments our children go through, our love for them is unwavering. They may feel it even more than us. We want the best for our child, but whatever the outcome or grades, we must always remember to celebrate hard work and best effort. 

I believe good grades can give us a little more certainties. But that doesn't mean I do not accept their shortcomings in academics.

Fuel box for PSLE warriors

I share this love pack I made for our little friends, our PSLE warriors. May I share the love virtually with you all! Wishing  all PSLE and 'O' level students the very best in success! Success is also defined by how much you love yourself by taking care of your health and well-being! 

Monday, 17 September 2018

Guest Post: Decorating Your House With Flowers on Christmas

Decorating your house on Christmas is just a common thing to make the occasion more exciting and memorable. Besides, there are easy ways for you to decorate your house without the need of spending much for the decoration such as using flowers in different colors. It is not that difficult to acquire a florist delivery knowing that flowers are widely available. In fact, you can already look for a online flower shop Singapore instead of visiting a flower shop.

Plants and Flowers as Christmas Decorations
When talking about Christmas, searching for various decorations is something that most people spend their time with. They want to feel the spirit of Christmas and somehow uplift their feelings and enjoy the season. One common way to accentuate your house on Christmas is by using flowers. For sure poinsettia will always be on your list knowing how popular this flower is during the season. In fact, you can easily find this flower in different Singapore florist

Another type of Christmas flower is the Rosemary. One of the reasons why people use this as decoration on Christmas is because of the fact that it is considered to be a lucky plant. The scent of Rosemary provides good luck to people. Mistletoe is also a famous Christmas plant that has become a romantic plant wherein a boy and a girl kiss each other underneath.  

If you are not good at making a perfect Christmas flower arrangement, then it is best that you go for Christmas cactus. You can expect this plant to bloom on Christmas by providing it with indirect sunlight during the day and complete darkness at nighttime. Avoid using artificial light because this can only affect how the plant grows.

There are indeed lots of plants and flowers that you can use to decorate your house on Christmas. This is something that you should not set aside because it can increase the excitement you feel especially if you are with your loved ones. Besides, these flowers are accessible during the season and you can even order them from Little Flower Hut . Just make sure that you can get the flowers on time so you can start decorating the house right away. Always compare the cost of different florists if you want to get a florist delivery at reasonable rates. It is also an advantage if the florist can provide discounts and amazing deals for you to save money.

This post is brought to you by: Little Flower Hut