|a pretty a day is here and away|

Documenting life's beauty, as seen through the eyes of a lady blessed with everything a girl could dream of, and more: five gorgeous kids, patient and providing husband, an adorable dog, a very cheeky frog, and still time enough to get crafty and creative in the kitchen or with my trusty needles, thread and yarn!
The joys of being Queen of the household! Rejoice, and the world joins in!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Stitches and colour...

Pretty of the night: Milly's Gollywolly, Matilda!

Uploaded this prettysome lil girl on Facebook the other day, but clean forgot to write a blog entry on her! Well she sure deserves a whole post dedicated to her existence since first of all, I made her with love, and secondly, not many little girls like black dolls! THEY ARE AFRAID OF THEM, IN FACT! Hahaha! My Milly was different! She really wanted a gollywog... come to think of it, I have no idea where she got the idea of having a gollywog, but she did mention it, and gollywogs don't come easy here in Singapore, so I stitched her one myself! She helped out with the head and parts of the arms and body and ... but you know how 9-year-olds can't stick around on projects very long!!!

Well I thought that Little Matilda definitely deserves pride of place somewhere in the home!

So out she came from the closet-of-wonders that Milly stashes all her treasures - not junk, she insists, whenever I ask her to clear it out!

I'm still casting a proud glance over at Matilda every now and then as I potter about the house!

Here's a dedication to ten years of colourful livin', Matilda!

Nightynight, dream of pretty things!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Crafty crafty hands...

Got crafty last night... SCRAPS CAN BE BEAUTIFUL! (Ah, that phrase brings back great memories of my scrapping adventures 20 years ago...

I made this little teapot coaster last night on a whim... It's made out of scraps from beautiful fabric I've been collecting over the years! (Look closely, that's the shape of my hand! HAND OF THE CRAFTER!) Try completing a little quilting piece with two jabbering kids perched hands-on-chins on your bed watching you... Ack! You gotta be made of tough stuff to be a mom! Gone are the days when I had too much time to fill with solitary work... Now I've got to fight off little gremlins, needle in one hand, and one hand holding them back!!!

Completed this little piece nonetheless, and really, the satisfaction from completing a little project neverrr gets old!

As I type this, Lil Nicholas is at the breakfast table with his daily read... Never seen an eleven-year-old so engrossed in reading! (Not since the Time of Mel, that is, but hey, that's eons ago, and the girl hardly reads anything now - at least, not the news!)

Amazed at how time flies (DECADES since I first picked up a needle, ONE DECADE since I last saw Mel read the papers from cover to cover),

FOOOOOOOOOD: the key to ANYONE'S heart!

Ideas in the kitchen with Alfie
Ideas in the kitchen for sure
Ideas in the kitchen with Alfie
Creative on the ol' coal stove!
(to be sung to the tune of Someone's in the Kitchen with Dinah, darlins!)

Hahahahhaha! Every time Alfie hits the kitchen, there'll sure be an awesome feast! So we all knew we were in for a treat yesterday evening when he disappeared into the kitchen... And boy were we right! What a spread! Sweet sweet fish, fresh from the markets, omelettes, watercrest soup... That's just the beginning! Alfie's a real gourmet chef, as Nick would say.

Speaking of Nick, that little round man, here he is insisting on a picture with our fruit haul! Pineapples are fresh from the farms nearby.

Fruits are the best way to end a meal, that's for sure!

And, inspired by Alfie's creativity, and a lil recipe for awesome 'Chicken soup for the soul', I whipped this up for Mils the second she emerged from the room! Didn't use a drop of seasoning, but Mil's eyes flew open in awake-ness upon tasting the sweetness!

Your regular foodie,

Friday, May 28, 2010

New hideaways!

So what could possibly be better than waking up in the afternoon on a public holiday! Alfred whisked off to get some good breakfast all the way from the market at Tiong Bahru.

We were all too excited at the sight of the spread to even think about taking photos!

Good morning coffee table talk and good food is definitely an unfailing combination!

The weather's pretty chilly today - as chilly as it can get here on the Equator, anyway - and as the skies outside threatened to open up, I put the finishing touches on my latest crafty project: Prettifying the Couch! With a little crafty action, the couch was reupholstered, complete with a lil brown cushion adorned with one of my crochet adventures!

Take a look at our very own new hideaway spot! I always surprise myself when I manage to create yet ANOTHER comfy space in our home. When I placed the cushion in its rightful place, I stepped back, arms akimbo, smiling at my own handiwork.

Not bad, eh? Even if I do say so myself!!

Of course, it only took a second for Milly to spot the new corner, and she promptly plonked herself down nice and comfy right there, putting an end to any further attempts at photography.

Thought this song would be apt for our nice new hideaway... a perfect song to listen to again and again and over and over on a day that threatens to be rainy like this one!

Content (and pretty prouda myself),

Monday, May 24, 2010

The littlest violin finds a friend.

Once upon a time, there sat happy a great green frog with a great green grin. In his arms, he held a violin. It was the littlest violin. He had found it while exploring the dark and dangerous cupboards (much too high up to climb, Ollie, as I've warned many times...)

That great green frog surprised me this morning (again!) by somehow finding Mimi's old violin (the smallest violin!) and attempting to play it.

Oh Ollie, this makes up for all the silly things you've been up to these past few days!

And no, you may not eat the mushrooms downstairs. They aren't edible.

The lil guy won my heart all over again when he produced this frame with great fanfare (the bears and Gino the monkey were humming some grand tune), and said, "All I wanted was to be like Mimi!"

And there's my pretty darl' sittin' pretty with the littlest violin.

And that's the tale of how the littlest violin found a new friend (in a great green frog!)

Mornings are always good for stories

My Lil Flautist

I'm particularly chipper this evening, especially since a sweet lil flautist came flittin' my way with her flute and her piccolo and her Chinese lute...

and serenaded me before she decided it was beddy-bye time (ever so punctual at 10pm, ain't that right Kim?)

She was particularly chipper too, it seems! And the cherry on the cake was her surprise on the piano. Now tell me this, is she talented or what! And we thought we had it good with Mimsy. Take a look at this, fellas, she plays over four instruments (five, if that reed counts hahahaha), and she's not even 16 yet!

So she may not be everything in the world of academia, but hey, she's my lil musical Kimsy! HAHAHA!

Will be a'postin' a video of Kim sometime soon, once she's free to help out with the techy things...


Friday, May 21, 2010

Scenes from an Everyday Living

Nick and Thumper in ye ol' candy store.

Been looking through all the photos that the happy crew and I have amassed over the years. Boy, have we come far. But it's funny how when we reminisce, it's all the small things we recall - visiting that old furniture store where they had the roof-that-let-the-light-in, ice cream surprises, jelly-cakes for birthdays (decades ago!), first teddy bears and favourite dresses...

Here's a particularly apt song for my reflective mood! Hope you like it, wherever you are, whatever you're up to in Life!

if there’s one thing that I’ve noticed
out of all the things I’ve seen
it’s that you can leave a footprint
in a place you’ve never been

Kiddos, I sure know we've left footprints on one another's hearts!

Love always,

Queen of Nuts

My friend Bryan (who started out being Mel's friend) wrote Milly a song last week! Here it is, on my YouTube channel - haha! My first video, but there'll be more.

And we spotted the good kid in the papers the other day... so today's pretty... Bryan 'Brybry'.

Made the above YouTube video with Kimmie Dear's help! She's staying home today (giving school a miss - you know she wouldn't mind that!) Kim, Nick and Mel have tickets for Gatz - a LOOOOONG production... how's EIGHT hours sound! It's based on The Great Gatsby, and the performers will read out the entire novel in about eight hours?

Now THAT really takes great awesome memory work!


Gift of Music (cheesy but ... ah nevermind)

BJ's got a brand new HiFi set, Alfie's surprise! He spent most of last night singing and dancing and reaaaaalllly having a go at it :D

He's evidently pleased, and so am I! Need to get Milly to burn more discs (ah, burn!) so we can make full use of this invention!

To end off with a few wise words from Mimi: "Let them eat cake," she quotes. "Mary Antoinette?" asks Mel. "The French Revolution," replies Mimi, "Wow. They make me wanna eat cake."

Wise indeed.

Sagely (okay okay, not quite!),

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Adventures in solitude

Less than forget but more than begun
These adventures in solitude never done

So Mils went on her very own solitary journey yesterday.

As a Mom, you learn that it isn't your duty to say 'no'. I've found that "Hmm... Alright, that's cool, you may wanna know however, that ... *insert cautionary message* ... but other than that, okay" works much more effectively.

Case in point: Mils requests (no, scratch that) Mils INFORMS me of her plan to cross the border.

Me: You didn't leave me a post-it note. (She normally leaves me notes telling me to wake her up for school.)
Me: No note!
Mils: *fumes and takes a fierce bite into her nutella sandwich, settling down on the sofa already* (so much for waking up for school!)

30 minutes later,
Mils: Should I take the train? It leaves at 1.30 p.m. (Presumably the train in question is the train to Danga City Mall. At this point, I'm thinking: She can't be serious.)

I handed her my loose change (Ringgit) from our last trip (made YEARS ago).

"You decide. Take care, watch out for the cab drivers."

And all went well.

Lil guy was treated to good food all day long.

The happy duo ended up at City Square Mall in Johor Bahru. Cool! Earned shiny new stamps in their passports too (also cool)!

Well today's a new day, and it calls for new stories, but just to start the morning, another apt song by The New Pornographers: Myriad Harbour

I took a plane, I took a train (Ah, who cares, you always end up in the city)

Mils, take a train the next time round, sure will make for interesting travel!


P.S. All song choices today were by Milly! They're now ... burned (still can't come to terms with this word) ... on a disc for me and Benji.

Monday, May 17, 2010



My brother Ben, is twenty-three
But we get along, him and me.

He likes balloons, and I do too.
He says, "I'll bring them on adventures, this I will do."

He says every morning, he talks of his dreams,
His brain full of ideas is just bursting at the seams.

"They rocket through the stars, and they swim through the seas."
"When you were done, did you bring them for peas?"

He said no, he didn't bring them for peas,
But he did say that they sat down for tea.

My family is awesome,
They're all so cool.

We've got super powers,
And every Sunday, we visit the pool.

Mom can multi-task, she confuses us sometimes,
Is she in the kitchen, or fixing the blinds?

Dad tries to play the same game,
But I think this task was meant for a dame.

My three sisters, they're here and they're there,
In a game of hide and seek, it's just not fair.

My big brother Ben, he's there for me all right,
But I don't know how to make him sleep at night.

What about me?
Well, I guess we'll have to wait and see.

One day, I decided that I shall write about me,
I shall discuss it this afternoon with my sister, over some tea.

"Make it descriptive, and it has to have a thick plot."
She ranted and ranted until there was no more tea in the pot.

So I started today, in a poetic fashion,
And I let my mind run free, my words filled with passion.

So, dearest reader, please enjoy,
This very book written by an eleven-year-old boy.


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Waiting waiting waiting...

See the stone set in your eyes
See the thorn twist in your side
I wait for you

Norwegian singers Espen Lind, Kurt Nilsen, Alejandro Fuentes, and Askil Holm perform U2's With or Without You so perfectly!

Speaking of waiting, I've been a'waiting for the gang to be home with Boon Lay Power Nasi Lemak (the name says it all!)

Sleight of hand and twist of fate
On a bed of nails she makes me wait
And I wait without you

The topic of waiting also brings to mind a play Mils mentioned - Waiting for Godot. Was so amused by the plot: two friends wait for a third friend who, by the end of the play, never arrives. Meanwhile, the two friends get up to hijinks aplenty!

Ooh, speak of the lil devils, here they are a'ringing my doorbell!!!!!!!

I've always been good with time ;)' that's something my lil Milly's gotta pick up soon though, she's terrible with time. Look at her desk - messy already after only one night of spick-and-span-ness. I suppose it's Mom to the rescue (again). Stay calm, Yol, stay calm!

Later alligators,

Why I Wake Early

Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who made the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and the crotchety –
best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light –
good morning, good morning, good morning.
Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.

(You can always count on Mary Oliver's poetry to lift my spirits!)

Why do I wake early?
To see the smiles on my children's faces
and to hear their singsong voices greet me
good morning.

I wake earlier still,
to have my slice of peace and quiet
before the nestlings get up and running
(but I'll miss them so when they fly the coop!)

I love waking up early to potter about the kitchen. Ask any of the lil ones, they'll tell ya that no breakfast is ever the same!!! ;)

Also, thought I'd share my latest earworm...


Now we're all footloose and fancy-free

This post concerns big beds and big boys enjoying big beds (that aren't theirs, nyeh nyeh!) so if big bedframes and white-themed room-warming parties aren't your thing, then off with ya! ;)''''

No objections?

Then this post shall proceed...

Darn, this song sure makes me wish my name was Jane!

He tells her, I want to paint you naked on a big brass bed
with bright orange poppies all around your head.
And she says, Crazy old man, I'm not young anymore.
That's all right, he whispers, I've never painted before.

Such a sweet song!

Speaking of brass beds, we've got our very own Beautiful Big Bedframe now! Everything I've ever wanted! Never quite found the perfect one prior to this, but really, this is it! Perfection in a bed! :D

Am beaming about it, and oh I can't wait to hop right into bed but the Internet beckons! Gotta maintain my web presence, ya know! They say that if you Google yourself and Google comes up with nothing, then you're as good as non-existent!

Anyway, here's a peek!!!

Boys chillin' in da crib (it's a big one too!)

Had the whole room done up with a new chest of drawers too, just to complement the bedframe!!!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010


So you've heard about the Leica... So feast your eyes, folks! Just one of my many Mother's Day pressies!!! Press the shutter and watch our lives unfold!

If you look closely, you get a glimpse of Benjiboy!

At the start of a beautiful new day,


Listen to the Legendary Freddie Mercury, everyone. Time waits for nobody.

(Milly's evidently finding out the hard way - for the hundredth time! Tsktsktsk... late nights late nights...)

Time is of the essence, and here's a nice beddy-bye song Mel just let me listen to.

Well Time waits for no man (and no girl either), so I'm off to bed.

Goodbye Mel, learn your lesson well!

Your Momsie Yol

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Dudes of the castle

Ben stumbled out from his regular morning shower, still bleary-eyed and not-so-bushy-tailed. Never has been a morning person, this big lil boy!

I grabbed him and exclaimed, still not quite so over the excitement of it all, "BENJIBOY! BENJIBOY! OH BENJO, WHO IS THIS?"

I pointed eagerly at the page that had so stunned me: Home B7.

"Nicholas Lam, from Rosyth School," Ben read. "Nicholas Lam! From Rosyth School!" he repeated. It was sinking in! 

"NICHOLAS LAM! NICHOLAS LAM! FROM ROSYTH SCHOOL! MY BROTHER" he enthused to Melly, who was enjoying the most delightful breakfast (gotta keep em happy so they keep these surprises coming)!

Upon seeing his lil bro in the papers, Ben couldn't keep the excitement in. He was being particularly photogenic, so why not grab a few shots for the family album!

Nick, meanwhile, was practically swimming in the praises!

My lil writer's making a name for himself! Gosh! Wowza, really can't get over it... Explains my late night!!


Benjamin - 'Son of my Right Hand'

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master; 
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim; 
If you can meet with triumph and disaster 
And treat those two imposters just the same;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute 
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run - 
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, 
And - which is more - you'll be a Man my son! 

I'm feeling poetic today, so why not let the music do the talking for me!

Feast your ears, folks!

Ben, the two of us need look no more.

Yours always and forever,

Sunday, May 9, 2010

In the wee hours of the morning, I woke up to hear the washroom being used. Must be old Benjiboy. I thought to myself, lifting my head from the jelly-like mattress Alfred got me for mother's day.

I prepared myself a humble cup of water, and skipped along to the bathroom, arming myself with plungers, brushes and Gif (Ah, Gif....). But to my surprise, the toilet was spanner than spick!

I checked the mirrors, the windows, the loo. All were shinier than speckles can be! So I put down my weapons of cleaning and skipped along to the dining table, where I saw a card propped up for a mother's reading.

At first, I thought it was another one of Melmel's wake-me-up notes. Then, I saw the oversized handwriting of Fattyfatfatfat Nick!

Oh of course his pudgy fingers couldn't handle the Swiss pen!

I read it, and it read;

Waking up in the morning,
Five A.M. sharp.

Singing us to wake,
A voice like a harp.

Oh when the delicious food is tasted,
The meal's consumed and nothing's wasted...

Keeping the house spicker than span,
and so on this day, I have something to share...

On this day, Mother's day,
You're my mother, hooray!

So I'll tell the other kids as the day is done...

"I'm proud to be my father's wife's son!"

And that really brought a large tear to my eye.

Then Ollie, who was prancing around with a miniature camera, jumped up and down in front of me, shouting "CLICKA CLICKA CLICK CLICK CLICKAROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Wheeeeheeee! Wheeeeee! Yeeeehaaaaaaaaaaaaa!"

I took the mini-camera from him and realised it was a gimmick camera with pre-taken photos! A frog couldn't have made this (Although frogs DID prove that a dead guy can be brought back to life)!

I put it to my eyes and I saw Nickyboy floundering in a leather jacket in a Michael Jackson impersonation!

Then I clicked the camera and I saw my other lovelies!

What a great mother's day this was going to be, I could feel it!

(Guest post by Nick ;))


Saturday, May 8, 2010

Sleep Talkin' Alfie!

Oh, my little boy Nick told me of this British man who sleeptalks and spouts positively laughable gibberish! Oh the Britons are funny! I was laughing my head off when I saw the one about Choc Dip!

If only our Alfred was as funny, I'd be enlightened of my everynightly laundry load...

I guess dreams never do come true, but I've had my fair bit of sleep-talking and sleep-walking Alfie for the children at the table, oh their adorable laughter!

Well, if you DO want to see the Sleep Talkin' Man himself... Beware, adults, he can be... A little on the vulgar side sometimes.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Just a quick post (phew, a mom's work is never complete - hence the late nights / early mornings!) since my darl' Mimi's off to Bintan for the week. (Have fun, homie!)

She's bound to return with stories and jokes galore!

Reason why I'm awake at this unearthly time? Packing her bags!!! !!! 

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