Friday, October 28, 2011

Sickness and birthday

As I had mentioned in the post before this one, the weather's been bad and this week is no different. Caitlin had high fever (40 deg C)on Monday but by Wednesday, the fever broke. We celebrated her ninth birthday a day earlier on Wednesday which coincided with the Deepavali public holiday. Family came over, we had lunch and did the customary song and cake at home.

She felt tired by evening and took a late nap, woke for a later-than-usual dinner.

Yesterday (Thursday 27th) was her birthday. We had planned for her to go to school and at lunch break, I'd bring a cake to celebrate with her classmates. But since she didn't seem fully recovered on Wednesday evening, we decided to let her skip school and luckily we did as her fever, although mild, returned when she woke in the morning (37.5 - 38 deg C). Her usual morning sneezes and stuffy nose due to her allergic rhinitis condition was more pronounced and her stuffy nose seemed worse than usual. I took her to the paediatrician who said she has mild flu and her nose allergy needs to be managed again with a nasal spray. She seemed a bit better by afternoon but went back to lethargy by late evening but fever appeared under control without paracetamol.

This morning she seemed fine when we went to the hair salon to get a trim (she asked for temporary curls too, and the stylist was kind enough to use her curling iron for free since she found out her birthday was yesterday). But by lunchtime, she felt tired again, with a slight temp, and is now asleep.

Sigh, I hope this viral fever will come to pass soon and I hope it's nothing else. She's not attended school or any other extra classes this whole week. I hope she'll be able to go to school next Monday. I'm glad exams are over and they're not doing much in school other than going through their exam papers and practising their performances for the Speech Day in two weeks' time.

I hear a number of kids in her class have also been absent due to fever or sickness...

Monday, October 24, 2011

Bad weather

The weather has been quite bad lately. We read about bad floods in our neighbouring country Thailand. And here, it's scorching hot in the mornings and afternoons but come late afternoon and evening, it starts to pour very heavily. Sometimes the rain can continue into the night for hours.

With such weather, I'm sure the doctors are getting good business with more people getting sick. Week before last, E caught the flu. He had traveled to East Malaysia for work for a few days. Couple with lack of sleep and stressful work, his immunity let its guard down and he caught the flu. Then last week, it was my turn. I caught a cold and till today, some remnants of it is still lingering.

This morning, C woke up to get ready for school and told us her head felt hot. She has a fever and has skipped school. I guess we'll keep her at home tomorrow as well. Wednesday is a public holiday for Malaysians as it is the Hindu festival of Deepavali or Diwali. We will be celebrating C's ninth birthday on Wednesday with lunch at home with family.

C's actual birthday is on Thursday. I hope she will be well by then to go to school as she wants me to bring a cake to school at lunchtime to celebrate her birthday with her classmates.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My Cheeky Girl

Me: What essay did your teacher ask you to write?
Her: 'My Father' or 'My Mother'
Me: So which did you choose?
Her: My Mother (Me - feeling the pride rise in my chest :D)
Me: What did you write about me?
Her: That you're 46 years old
Me: Aiyo...I'm not that old! What else?
Her: At the end I wrote that I hope my mother will live a long and happy life with me and my father.....but I bet you won't.
Me: Why???
Her (giggling and sniggering): Because I'm so naughty and give you so much stress!

This week, C is having her final exams at school. In her three years of formal schooling so far, she has yet to be nervous or afraid of exams. During exam season, she continues life as usual, reading her story books and watching TV.... and after my nagging she would revise by flipping through the pages of her books, reading its contents cursorily. One to two weeks before the exam, the teachers would do revision with them in school so I guess if one is confident enough, one can get through the exam without studying more or cramming at home.

I remind her that although she knows her work, she should study so that she can remember what she has learnt and can do better. So far she's been scoring A's and B's, except for the Malay language which she finds too hard. I think that the standard of Bahasa Malaysia is quite high now compared to my time. During my time, we leart 'simpulan bahasa' (idioms) and essay writing when we were around Standard 5 or 6 (11 or 12 years of age). Now 'simpulan bahasa' is taught in Year 1 (7 years old) and in Year 3, they are already writing essays, informal and formal letters. It is hard to do well in these if your BM vocabulary is weak.

While I nag and keep reminding her that she should study, I've also made her aware that she will ultimately be responsible for the consequences or outcome of her choices. I can only lead my horse (her Chinese zodiac is the horse coincidentally!) to the water, provide her with the necessary books, reminders, words of advice. I can attempt to force the horse to drink but in the big picture, it will not be effective..

So for now, we are letting her learn in her own way. Success is not measured by milestones the world sets for you to achieve, the strings of A's one has collected, the tons of facts one can regurgitate, or the x-figure salary you earn. Of course, there are people who measure success in those terms but I prefer not too.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Dolphin Tale

Movies these days are jumping into the 2D and 3D trend bandwagon. There's a new movie that's just been released (in the US that is...) that has been reported to even top other new ones this season.

The movie I'm talking about is a family-friendly one, based on a true story about a dolphin that was rescued. The dolphin lost its tail when it got injured and infected from being caught in a trap, but was eventually fitted with a prosthetic one (amazing!), all these in the backdrop of a budding relationship with a young boy who was very attached to it. The actual Dolphin named Winter stars in the movie alongside one of my favourite singers who also acts -- Harry Connick Jr., and Ashley Judd, Kris Kristofferson and Morgan Freeman.

I'm looking forward to catching this movie with my family when it opens in Malaysia. Caitlin would certainly love it as she loves animals and animal stories. Some of her favourite animals are dolphins, cats, dogs, tigers and other big cats.

Here are two trailers for Dolphin Tale.