Saturday, February 28, 2009

Malaysia Singapore Night 2009

For the past 2 years, Daddy has been performing at the Malaysia Singapore Night at UBC (MSN for short). MSN is organized by the student members of the Seri Malaysia Club (SMC) and Singapore Raffles Club (SRC) on campus. It's a cultural night celebrating Malaysian and Singaporean food and culture. Last year, Mommy wasn't around (she was working on her research in Malaysia), but Melur and Arman watched with their Nenek. The year before that, if you recall, Melur and Arman couldn't stay off the stage, while Daddy played the drums for the newly formed Gardenburst band.

Anyway, this is Daddy's third year performing. Daddy arrived separately to prepare for the show. Unfortunately, Mommy and the kids missed Daddy performance, cause we performed first. By the way, Daddy left Gardenburst, and performed with a new group of Malaysian students. We performed “Mentera Semerah Padi” and “Istimewa”. You can only view these videos from Facebook at the moment.

Mommy and the kids arrived soon after my performance ended. They had to wait a really long time for the food, cause it wasn't served until the entire show was over (I guess the MSN committee didn't want people leaving before the show was over). When all of the was done, the kids were able to enjoy some food.

I'm sorry we didn't take many pictures. It was kind of dark, and there really weren't many opportunities to take photos. Hopefully, you'll find more pictures about MSN on Facebook, cause the students were are quite active there. The kids were very well behaved over all. Hopefully they can watch my performance on-line, and it'll be just like they were there.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

New Skates

Arman got some new skates from school. Well, they're used skates, but new to Arman. It's for Arman's school skating trips which Mommy blogged about recently. I found out from the teachers that Arman's skates costs about CAD10, which is really cheap. They got it used from a place called Cheap Skates, and I know this place. We've passed by the store on Dunbar a couple of times.

Anyway, Melur's been feeling like she missed out. So I promised to get her a pair of skates too... from the same place. And so today, after Arman's Chess Club at the Old Barn Community Centre, we took the #25 down to Dunbar. It's only about 10 minutes away by bus, and the bus runs about every 10 minutes as well.

The store itself is pretty small and cramped with used goods. I guess people can also sell their stuff here as well. What happens is, you put up a price, and every week, the price comes down. So you may have similar products with different prices depending on how long it's been around on the shelf. There were many to choose from with varying prices. Melur finally chose a pair she liked (and that I agreed with as well).

After leaving the store, it was time to head home. But the kids were feeling a little hungry. Just behind the bus stop was a Starbucks. And so we went inside and got some scones to enjoy while we waited for the bus.

Here are the ice skates we got for Melur. I hope you enjoy them, Melur!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Happy Birthday Madelena

Melur is invited to Madelena's birthday party. Madelena is Jamie and Natalya's daughter (from KinderClub), and she is a year younger than Melur. But since Madelana would come to KinderClub now and then... she became quite good friends with Melur as well as a few other girls from KinderClub.

Since Jamie and Natalya live in Burnaby, we decided to get a Zipcar for that day. Taking public transportation means 2 hours of traveling time... and that's just one way! By car, it’s only about 40 minutes or so... Papa took this opportunity to get a Mini Cooper convertible. We drove in it with the top down even though the weather is still a bit chilly. The kids simply love it, and insisted on driving with the top down all the way.

After sending Melur, the rest of us went to Metro Town Mall for lunch. While Melur is having fun at the birthday party, Mommy, Papa, and Arman walked around and did some window-shopping. We picked up Melur about 2 hours later. Most of the other kids were gone already... but Melur was still running around with Madelena.

On our way back, we decided to drop by the Central Park at Burnaby. The kids played at the park there, while Mommy and Papa each took half-hour turns of running. The park has a nice paved trail for runners and walkers. The kids had fun (just look at them doing acrobatics on the slide), while Mommy and Papa managed to sneak in a bit of exercise...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Trail Run and Biking

Despite the snow we had earlier in the year, the weather's really been looking up lately. Since Mommy and Daddy like to run, we thought we’d take the kids out through the near by trails. Mommy and Daddy would run, while the kids take their bikes.

We started from the trails behind our house, and then proceeded south through the Pacific Spirit Park, past 16th street. We tried to take pictures on Daddy's camera phone, but it was quite dark in the shade of the trees. This is pretty much the only picture that turned out well.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Pick-Up Arman

As we mentioned before, this academic year, Mommy sends Melur and Arman to school. Daddy picks up Arman after school. The days are starting to end a little later, bit by bit. I was surprised to find Arman and his Kinderclub classmates playing outside when I came to pick him up. It’s usually still dark when I arrive at Kinderclub around 5:15pm.

Anyway, Arman didn’t want to go home. He’s having so much fun. I’m sure Arman (and Melur) will start having so much more fun outside once Day Light Savings time kicks in in a couple of weeks. I can’t wait for that myself.

Here’s Arman:

Skating with U-Hill

Arman's kindergarten teacher, Susan DeBeck, is very active. She likes to take Arman's class out for field trips. They have already gone to the Vancouver Aquarium, Orpheum Theatre, and Jericho Beach.

Arman with Skate Bars

For today, Arman and his classmates are spending their school day at the UBC skating rink. This is Arman's second trip to the skating rink. With Susan's encouragement, Arman made a lot of progress. He can now stand and move on the ice without holding to a skate bar. He usually moves around the ice for 10 minutes before going to the bench for a short 1 to 2-minute rest. A lot of Arman's classmates are beginner skaters as well (though quite a few look as if they've been skating since the day they were born). They seem to be having so much fun learning how to skate together. Good job guys!

After playing for a while, Susan would ask for all the kids to line up at one end of the skating rink... and the kids will skate all the way to the end after she blows her whistle. You can see Arman lining up (without holding on to a skate bar) with his friends, and waiting for Susan's whistle.

When skating is over... Arman and Mommy would have lunch together. Mommy usually asks Arman what he would like for lunch... He usually says, "Basement!" Yup, a few food stalls at the UBC Village Food Centre serves Halal food. Arman likes to have lamb shawarma for lunch, and Mommy is only too happy to oblige.

Go Arman Go

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Al-Watan Tandoori

We've been hearing so much about this Halal restaurant on Fraser that apparently serves really good beriyani called Al-Watan. And seeing as we need to get some Halal meat from Fraser anyway today, we decided to make a trip to Al-Watan to see what the fuss is all about.

Sorry... we didn't take that many pictures. The food was REALLY good. Everything on the menus is good, but our favourites are the mixed tandoori (meat the even Melur likes) and the garlic naan. The garlic naan is really fluffy and tasty. I can't wait to go there again.

The owner (at least we think he's the owner) was very nice, and mentioned that he knows of a few Malaysians who frequent here. We know who they are (Kakak Jehan, and Kakak Ina). Anyway, thanks for an awesome meal.

Check out Al-Watan on Fraser and 44th st.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Bears on Valentine's

It's Valentine's Day, and we started the morning at Kumon, as usual. Here we are waiting for the bus after Kumon at Blenz, Mommy's favourite cafe:

There was a demonstration at Cambie and Broadway. People were voicing up about the atrocities at Sri Lanka. You can barely make out the chants.

Anyway... we didn't plan anything special today. We spent our Valentine's Day evening at home, with a family dinner. Daddy got Mommy some flowers and a teddy bear, Daddy also got Melur a smaller teddy bear, as you see right here. Melur seems to like it.

I got Arman a Rubik’s cube. Arman mentioned to me that he wanted to have one, but when we say Mommy and Melur are getting teddy bears, he wanted a teddy bear too. I guess I'll be getting him a teddy bear soon.

Anyway, for those who celebrate it, Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

More Vancouver Snow

I sent the kids to school this morning cause Mommy wasn't feeling well. We took the bus. Here we are waiting for the C22 at the bus stop near Acadia Park:

In case you're wondering, there wasn't any snow yesterday. It started snowing late last night, and the snow you see today accumulated over night. This is typical Vancouver snow. It snows a little bit, and before you know it, it's all gone (at least that's what I expect in the coming days). There's not that much snow this time around.

So here's what the snow looks like at University Hill Elementary School as I left this morning.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Chess Play

We go to chess club at the Old Barn Community Centre every Sunday at 12 pm. I just thought I'd share some picture from our trip there, just to give you guys a picture of what it looks like. Today, Melur's playing chess too, which is quite rare actually.

Usually, right after chess club, we let the kids hang out at the playground outside the Old Barn for a few minutes. The weather today is pretty good, still a little chilly though. It's usually rainy in the spring. Not so today, and I'm grateful.

Come join us for Chess Club at the Old Barn Community Centre on Sundays at 12 pm.

Friday, February 6, 2009

ENT Again

Arman and Daddy made another trip to BC Children's Hospital today, to see our ENT Specialist. We saw him last time in because of Arman's raspy voice. Today, we're seeing him about his ears. Arman had a check-up at school recently, and they recommended we get his ears checked.

So what was the problem? Ear wax... Lots of ear wax. We were told that Arman has a lot of ear was on our last visit, and we diligent put baby oil nightly to remedy it. But I guess, they came back. And once the ear wax was removed, he checked Arman's ears again, and they were fine.

Thank goodness for that. We should watch his ears more often I guess. Thank you doctor.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

This is Mike

Mike is Melur and Arman's piano teacher. He's a really good teacher, much better than me. I know, cause I tried to teach Melur and Arman, but they wouldn't listen to me (maybe it's because I'm their dad). Now I'm stuck with drill duty, making sure the kids practice their piano everyday, so that they have something to sure Mike when he comes over on Tuesday afternoons.

Thank you, Mike... for being such a great teacher. We'll see you next week!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sunday Ice Skating

There's no swim class today, and whenever there's no swim class, there's a chance for the kids to go ice-skating at the UBC Ice Rink right after chess club. This is actually our second trip to the ice rink this year. Last week, Mommy came along. Daddy tried to get her into some ice skates, but that didn't work very well. Anyway, our camera has been on the frits lately, so we weren't able to take any picture or videos from that event.

Melur and Arman doing Kumon Homework in the morning

Anyway, here we are heading to the chess club in the wet snow. Arman's looking forward to the chess, and Melur is looking forward to the ice-skating.

After chess club, we headed straight for the ice rink. Arman is still a beginner, so you see him with his “training wheels”. He's not bad, still. Melur on the other hand loves the ice.

One of Melur's friends, Angela, is also here today. She comes here a lot, and she's a really good skater. From what I hear, she's taking lessons twice a week at the Kitsilano ice rink. And she comes here during Family Skate just for fun.

It's been a very fun day, ice-skating with the kids. I hope we can do this again, but most likely only when there's no swimming in the morning. It'd be too tiring. Keep it up guys!