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Kelvin Ang is a Daddy Blogger at Cheekiemonkies, Singapore's Parenting and Lifestyle Blog. He is a blessed owner of 3 kids, 2 terrapins & 1 fabulous wife - who says parenting can't be fun? He is one of the 10 Best Family Blog Finalists for Singapore Blog Awards 2012. Watch him get twirled around their fingers as the whole family explore new activities for kids & more!
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    This September school holidays, Jurong Bird Park is offering FREE admission to local residents!


    Jurong Bird Park - Asia’s largest bird paradise - displays 400 avian species, of which 20% are threatened and is also home to the world’s largest collection of Southeast Asian hornbills, and native and threatened songbirds such as the Strawheaded bulbul, White-rumped shama, and Greater green leafbirds.

    The complimentary admission into Jurong Bird Park is open to local residents (Singaporeans, Permanent Residents, and Employment Pass holders). While the park will be free to enter, there will be eight sections that will be gated and priced between $2 and $4. Coupons in sets of $10 can be purchased on site for entry to these gated areas.

    There will be special activities conducted within the gated areas:

    $2 per area, per pax

    Indoor Penguin Coast

    Meet the Baby Kings!
    Get introduced to the newest members of the penguin family - Percy, Brix and Arlo. The adorable king penguins are less than a year old and are excited to meet visitors in this exclusive keeper’s talk. Happening daily at 10.30am and 3.30pm.

    Wings of Asia

    Wings of Asia Scatter Feeding
    Join the park's Asian birds in the central walk-in aviary as they enjoy their lunch, and have the opportunity to feed various threatened species. Happening daily at 11.30am.

    Lory Loft

    Feed the Lovely Lories
    Explore the 9-storey-high aviary that offers a 360º view of lush greenery. Buy a cup of nectar and have our friendly lorries feed right out of your hands. Happening daily from 8.30am to 6.30pm.

    Waterfall Aviary

    Waterfall Feeding Frenzy
    Come up close and personal to an array of colourful birds as conures, parrots and peacocks flock down to feed on their favourite foods. Happening daily at 2.30pm (Extra slot at 10.30am on weekends).

    Parrot Paradise

    Blue Macaw Keeper Chit-chat
    Say “hello!” to the park's Hyacinth macaw in this exclusive keeper chit-chat. Find out more about some of the world’s most unique parrots and how Jurong Bird Park contributes to their conservation. Happening daily at 1.30pm.

    $4 per area, per pax

    High Flyers Show

    Marvel at the natural talents of our star birds and experience a free-flying performance featuring a grand finale of colours and excitement as one of the world’s largest number of birds take centre stage. Happening daily at 11am & 3pm, at Pools Amphitheatre.

    Kings of the Skies Show

    Get ready for a display of agility and sharp-eyed accuracy as nature’s best flying hunters unleash their predatory instincts in simulated hunts. Happening daily at 10am & 4pm, at Hawk Arena (Extra show at 1pm on weekends).

    Birdz of Play (Water Playground)

    Get ready for big splashes of fun at the bird-themed water playground! Get soaked by our giant tipping bucket and zip across the dry play zone on the Flying Fox. Opens daily from 9am to 5.30pm. *Two adults can enter Birdz of Play free with every paying child. Proper swimwear is required for guest safety in this area.

    Just for comparison sake, a ticket to the park costs $25.50 for an adult and $17 for a child so the good thing about individual gated pricing is you pay for only the attractions that your family wishes to visit.



    But even though there are eight gated attractions which require paid admission, there are still plenty of other areas within Jurong Bird Park that can be accessed for FREE!


    Places like the:

    Flamingo Lake and Flamingo Pool
    Wetlands
    Pelican Cove
    Dinosaur Descendants
    Birds of Prey
    Window on Paradise: Birds of Paradise
    Hornbills & Toucans
    Swan Lake
    Breeding and Research Centre


    So it is still possible to enjoy a leisurely stroll throughout Jurong Bird Park and see the birds without paying a single cent! 🤣

    If you have kids who love birds and want some fun for free, Jurong Bird Park is the place to be this September School Holidays!

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    Media Invite

    Singapore Night Festival returns for its 12th edition from 23 to 31 August 2019 and already, three light installations have been opened since 8 August 2019. This year, festival goers can expect stunning light art installations, performances and programmes presented by local and international artists. And in a nod to the Singapore Bicentennial, some of these will feature a Southeast Asian twist.


    Illuminating iconic facades and unexpected spaces, the annual Night Lights also returns from 23 August with 17 light artworks comprising of both projections and installations, encouraging festival-goers to reimagine familiar landmarks with their artistry and interactivity.


    So if you are planning to head down, here is the ultimate family-friendly Singapore Night Festival survivor's guide you need for this and next weekend!

    First things first, Singapore Night Festival is essentially divided into 5 zones:

    Zone 1: NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE

    Zone 2: ARMENIAN STREET + CHIJMES

    Zone 3: SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT UNIVERSITY (SMU) CAMPUS GREEN

    Zone 4: WATERLOO STREET + QUEEN STREET

    Zone 5: CATHAY GREEN + DHOBY GHAUT GREEN



    Zone 1: NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE



    Keep Dreaming
    Venue: National Museum of Singapore, Façade (Zone 1)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn



    Without a doubt, this is THE light projection show to catch if you have only time for one. And trust me when I say the kids will love it!



    Kids (and adults) can waatch the National Museum of Singapore come to life as three mysterious characters awaken from their deep slumber to embark on an adventure. As we join them on this whimsical journey, allow wonder and curiosity to take over as the secrets of this fantasy wonderland unravel before your eyes.


    Click below to watch a sneak preview!


    The Legend of Ramayana
    Venue: National Museum of Singapore, Banyan Tree (Zone 1)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    The famed National Museum of Singapore’s Banyan tree takes centrestage, with a projection by internationally renowned French group Spectaculaires titled The Legend of Ramayana, inspired by the Indian epic poem.


    This marks the first time that the Banyan tree will see a projection work complemented by a stirring gamelan instrumental performance, which retells the story of the Ramayana in traditional Javanese tembang or poetry. The epic story follows Prince Rama’s quest to rescue his beloved wife Sita from the demon King Ravana, through the eyes of a venerable Banyan tree.

    WHISPERS
    Venue: Gallery Theatre, National Museum of Singapore
    Dates and Time:
    8 - 22 Aug, 1 - 8 Sep 2019: 10am - 7pm
    23 - 24 Aug, 29 - 31 Aug 2019: 10am - 12mn
    25 - 28 Aug 2019: 10am - 10pm


    At first glance, the set-up seems pretty simplistic - which consists of huge fans and giant plastic sheets. And I have to admit the beginning of the 12-minute show is a little slow. But have a little patience and I guarantee that it will be a spell-binding experience!


    Executed to dramatic effect on a large scale, the immersive wind therapy session evolves from a mersmerizing hypnotic build to an overwhelming display of strength, combining forces both subtle and powerful to evoke an experience of elemental sensation.


    For best effects, do position yourself in the centre of the installation to bear the full brunt of the wind!


    Kids will love the experience, I reckon. But do note that the installations starts off in total darkness so if you have young kids, it might be good to prep them before heading in. Other than that, I have to say this is really one mersmerizing installation. Who knew plastic sheets and giant fans can conjure up something like this???

    INTERGALACTIC DREAMS
    Venue: Various locations within National Museum of Singapore
    Dates and Time:
    8 - 22 Aug, 1 - 8 Sep 2019: 10am - 7pm
    23 - 24 Aug, 29 - 31 Aug 2019: 10am - 12mn
    25 - 28 Aug 2019: 10am - 10pm


    Exploring the effects of climate change, the three-part installation Intergalactic Dreams by Singaporean artist Jahan Loh captures his exploration of althernative homes in an imagined future where Earth is no longer hospitable.


    Zone 2: ARMENIAN STREET + CHIJMES


    S.C.U.L.P.T
    Venue: Armenian Church (Zone 2)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    First presented in France, S.C.U.L.P.T has been fully redesigned for its debut international showing in Singapore. Tailored to fit every square centimetre of the Armenian Church’s centuries-old chevet, this artwork is the perfect marriage of projection mapping and interactivity, allowing visitors to manipulate its form and appearance with simple laser beams using their hands!


    Accompanied with a soundscape composed by EZ3kiel, S.C.U.L.P.T immerses visitors into a personal world of art and technology.


    Symbiote
    Venue: Walkway along Stamford Road (Zone 2)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    An installation that juxtaposes tension and lightness, Symbiote allows visitors to qander between thin, seamless fabric into an airy and undulating space, a response to Singapore’s dynamic multicultural and multireligious societal fabric, and be immersed in a manifestation of Singaporeans’ interdependence.


    Tropicana
    Venue: Stamford Court Clock (Zone 2)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    The Stamford Court clock comes to life with bright and bubbly colours, and an extravagant coating of warm tropical vibes under the sun. Washed up with whacky shades and wicked lines, this playful animated projection by The Electric Canvas will greet visitors as they arrive at the Singapore Night Festival.


    Disco Walkway
    Venue: Walkway along Stamford Road (Zone 2)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    Ever wandered through the city, a musical rhythm guiding your feet and compelling you to add a little hop and a skip? Inspired by the unheard tunes of the city, Disco Walkway adds vibrancy to the Stamford Walkway with glowing neon-coloured cubes and music.


    Waves of Time
    Venue: CHIJMES (Zone 2)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    Inspired by Singapore’s very own legend of a Prince who journeyed across the seas to visit Singapore, this façade projection on the historic CHIJMES chapel re-imagines the journey of the Prince chasing his dream to and around our island.


    In following the journey of the Prince, viewers explore the depths of the underwater world and encounter the variety of ethnic cultures which came together because of maritime connections, reminding us of how Singapore as a nation has been shaped by centuries of maritime trade and travel.

    Armenian Street Park Festival Village
    Dates and opening hours:
    23, 24, 30 & 31 August 2019 | 6pm – 12mn
    29 August 2019 | 8pm – 12mn

    Treat your taste buds to a wide selection of specially curated food and drinks at the Festival Village!


    Zone 3: SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT UNIVERSITY (SMU) CAMPUS GREEN


    Project:Dome (Air-con!)
    Venue: SMU Campus Green (Zone 3)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    There areFIVE shows within the dome: OCISLY, Soul Beads in Harmony, The Land Above, SOLIS and Strange Attraction.

    For kids though, OCISLY will be the one to watch.
    Leave your mark at the Singapore Night Festival with this crowd-sourced digital projection. Everyone can be a creator in the Project:Dome! Just scan the OCISLY QR code with your mobile device, select your emoticon and release it to populate the evolving atmosphere of the dome. Feel free to spawn as many emoticons as you want - kids will love it! 😁


    In:Sight
    Venue: SMU Campus Green (Zone 3)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    Take a moment from your exploration of the Singapore Night Festival to admire the unique light art installations that not just transform the university campus into an otherworldly space, but also add pizzazz to your SNF 2019 photo-moments!


    Glow Away
    Venue: SMU Campus Green (Zone 3)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    See slime in new light at this UV-lit installation created by members of the community. Participants from NHB’s HeritageCares programme lent their hands in making the slime which fills the luminescent public art installation.

    Zone 4: WATERLOO STREET + QUEEN STREET


    Sk(r)etch
    Venue: Queen Street (outside Kum Yan Methodist Church) (Zone 4)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn

    Inspired by childhood “mischiefs” of doodling on everything – Ca Kway Teow invites everyone to loosen up and get in touch with their inner child in this alternative space.


    Sk(r)etch is where the public is encouraged to leave their marks, quite literally, by scratching off the paint to reveal bright colours and patterns, created using 3M™ Reflective Sheeting, that come together to tell Singapore’s story. TIP: Turn on your camera flash when taking the photo to see an illuminated effect!


    Work-in-progress (Air-con!)
    Venue: National Design Centre (Zone 4)
    Dates: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn


    Asylum celebrates their 20th anniversary with an installation piece titled Work-in-progress. A scaffold structure populated with animated light formations brings across endless possibilities of “imagination”, the foundation to Asylum’s pursuit of creativity.

    Skylight and Timeline: Printed Lighting Technology of A*STAR
    Venue: Queen Street (outside Kum Yan Methodist Church) (Zone 4)
    Date: 23 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 7.30pm – 12mn



    You’ve seen its photo-worthy aesthetics on advertisements, decorations, pretty packaging and more. Now Made-in-Singapore technology finds new creative expression through Art for this inspired design collaboration with NAFA for the Singapore Night Festival! Using electricityconductible ink and paper-thin films to create flexible light-emitting sheets, Skylight and Timeline are works of art that transform the practical pavements of Queen Street into an innovative coupling of Art and Science!

    Zone 5: CATHAY GREEN + DHOBY GHAUT GREEN



    Fuerza Bruta
    Venue: Cathay Green (Zone 5)
    Dates: 29 – 31 August 2019
    Time: 8.30pm, 9.45pm, 11pm
    Duration: 30 minutes
    Admission: $15/pax excl. SISTIC fee.


    The only ticketed show at Singapore Night Festival 2019, the internationally renowned Fuerza Bruta has performed to more than 6 million spectators in sold-out shows across 34 countries and 58 cities!


    Look forward to a 360-degree sensory theatre party spectacle performed over and around a standing audience. Brace yourself for an adrenaline rush in this kinetic combination of high energy and action-packed aerial acrobatics performance. Let reality take a backseat as performers soar to the skies and pack in plenty of surprises with mind-blowing lighting visual effects just inches away from you. A show that sets one free from inhibitions and transcends language and conventional theatre, here’s your chance to fully immerse yourself and be brutally happy!


    Dhoby Ghaut Green Festival Village
    Dates: 23 – 24, 29 – 31 August 2019
    Opening hours: 6pm – 12mn

    Treat your taste buds to a wide selection of specially curated food and drinks at the Festival Village!


    TIPS TO SURVIVING SINGAPORE NIGHT FESTIVAL 2019

    Okay, so you are ready to head down with the kids. But before you do so, here are some handy tips that will make your experience a better one.

    1. KNOW WHERE TO GO
    It is always good to prep yourself by getting familiar with the area before going down. Download the festival map HERE or head to Singapore Night Festival's website to plan your itinerary for the night.

    This year, the bulk of the fun light installations are situated in Zone 1 and Zone 2. So if you have limited time, head to both Zones 1 and 2 which will probably take the bulk of the night.

    Hungry and thristy? There are TWO Festival Villages this year. One is located in Zone 2 at Armenian Street while the other is at Zone 5, at Dhoby Ghaut Green beside Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station.

    For some air-conditioned comfort, head to Zone 2's Project:Dome and Zone 4's Work-in-progress light installations.

    2. DRESS COMFORTABLY
    It is going to be crowded, hot and humid so be sure to dress in comfortable clothing and wear a pair of comfy shoes to prepare for the walking exercise!

    3. CARRY LIGHT
    For the Fuerza Bruta show as well as entry to the Festival Villages, there will be security checks before entering the areas. So if you do not want to get stuck in the long queues, head down WITHOUT a bag and you will be able to breeze through the express lane.

    4. HYDRATE YOURSELVES
    For sure, it will be humid so remember to let the kids drink enough water throughout the night. Beer will suffice for the adults, I reckon.



    HAVE FUN!


    Useful Information

    Singapore Night Festival 2019
    Dates: 23 - 31 August 2019 | Performance nights on 29, 30 & 31 Aug 2019
    Time: 7.30pm to 12 midnight
    Venue: Bras Basah.Bugis Precinct
    FREE Admission
    *While entry to SNF is free, some programmes in the line-up are ticketed.
    Website:nightfest.sg

    FESTIVAL MAP



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    From 31 August to 15 September 2019 (that's the end of the September school holidays), Sentosa Sandstation is back at Siloso Beach - with a Star Wars theme!


    The inaugural event under a three-year collaboration between Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) and The Walt Disney Company Southeast Asia, Sentosa Sandsation: Star Wars Edition is Southeast Asia’s largest sand sculpting festival, spanning almost 3,000 square metres and running from 31 August to 15 September 2019, between 10.00am and 8.30pm daily.

    And yes, entry into the event is FREE for all.

    20 larger-than-life sand sculptures of iconic Star Wars characters

    Promising fun for all ages, Sentosa Sandsation: Star Wars Edition will feature:

    - 20 Star Wars-themed sand sculptures: Immerse yourself amongst iconic characters brought to life by some of the world’s most renowned sand artists, including Singapore’s very own JOOheng Tan.

    - Embrace the light side of the Force with Yoda, Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Chewbacca and Rey or harness the power of the dark with Darth Vader, Jabba the Hutt, Boba Fett and Kylo Ren.

       - Sand sculpting workshops and ‘live’ demonstrations: Head on down to the daily free sand sculpting workshops located right on the event ground! Happening throughout Sentosa Sandsation: Star Wars Edition with three timeslots at 11.00am, 2.00pm and 5.00pm on a first come first served basis, this would be the perfect place for you to learn from the masters.


        - Guests can also look forward to Jabba the Hutt being brought to life by internationally renowned sculptor JOOheng progressively throughout the event.

        - Sentosa International Sand Sculpting Competition: Watch the world’s best sand masters compete to craft fantastic sand art masterpieces at the third edition of the Sentosa International Sand Sculpting Championship, which will be held from 31 August to 2 September.

        - Free movie screenings: Guests can also make it a whole day out with free movie screenings at Palawan Green. Happening at 7.45pm on 31 August, 1, 14 and 15 September, grab a picnic mat and enjoy family bonding time on the green.

          Free entry into Sentosa

          From 31 August to 15 September 2019, enjoy complimentary entry into Sentosa when you:

          ·        Enter via Sentosa Express trains: Simply tap your EZ-Link card on the gantry for free entry. Singapore residents without an EZ-Link card can present their NRIC or valid identification pass to our guest ambassadors for free entry.

          ·        Drive in: Singapore-registered vehicles (except motorcycles) can enter Sentosa for free during this period.

          From the Beach Station transport hub, take a 750-metre stroll down Siloso Beach to where Sentosa Sandsation: Star Wars Edition is. Alternatively, guests can hop on the dedicated shuttle loop service which runs from Beach Station to Imbiah Lookout to Siloso Point. The shuttle runs from 12pm to 9.30pm daily for the duration of the event with an interval of approximately 15 minutes.

          Oh, you can also enjoy $5 off Grab rides into Sentosa when you use the promo code: SANDSATION


          Yet another fun (and FREE) event to bring the kids to this September school holidays!

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          Media Invite

          If you are planning to find out how to let your child score A* for the PSLE Science paper, I can assure you that you will not find it at Singapore Science Festival 2019. BUT if you are looking to let the kids get involve, learn and get all excited about Science through experiential learning, then the 19th edition of the Singapore Science Festival is where you want to be at.


          Because science need not be intimidating - it can be extremely fun and simple enough for all ages to understand... and that is what the festival is all about as it takes place over 3 weekends, all through the September school holidays!

          Here's what happening over the next 3 weekends at Singapore Science Festival 2019:

          30 Aug to 1 Sep 2019

          The Magical Math and Science Show
          30 - 31 Aug 2019 | Plaza Singapura | 4PM | Free Admission

          Eddie Goldstein is a science communicator, program developer and performer who specializes in creating dynamic presentations, demonstrations and exhibits for museums and science centres all over the world.


          Perfect for all ages, this show will provide a unique combination of scientific demonstrations, intriguing explanations and sleight of hand magic. Not only will you learn science, but you will also have fun, fun and fun!

          Science Buskers Festival
          30 - 31 Aug 2019 | Plaza Singapura, Outdoor Plaza | 10am to 6pm | Free


          Watch Science comes alive through the performance of the lively Science Buskers at the Science Buskers Festival!


          The Science Buskers Festival encompasses the idea of developing the individual's communication skills through expressions of science in creative manners. Organized as a competition, this event serves as an excellent platform to spread key messages relating to the importance of inspiring an interest in science. During the competition, contestants will do a "show-and-tell" on any science topic, and judging will be based on audiences' votes and judges' scores.



          6 to 8 Sep 2019

          Snow Science Festival
          6 - 15 Sep 2019 | Snow City | 10am to 6pm | Admission charges apply


          This September holiday, experience the “cooler” side of life by participating in a host of fun activities at Snow City. Get caught in Snow City’s snow blizzard, or witness firsthand the magic created by snow and science!

          Incredible Edibles, the chemistry of cookies
          7 - 8 Sep 2019 | Plaza Singapura | 3pm to 3.30pm | Free Admission


          Join Scientist Kate Mulcahy as she gives you a delicious scoop behind one of the world's favourite treat - the cookie! Learn more about the role each ingredient plays and be amazed by the chemical transformations that take place while baking.

          This is a 40-minute long interactive science show with live science demonstrations and volunteer participation.


          13 to 14 Sep 2019

          X-periment! @ one-north
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Fusionopolis One | 10am - 6pm | Free


          Jointly organised by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and the Singapore Science Centre, X-Periment! aims to bring out some of the latest scientific research out of the labs and allows hands-on activities to the public, encouraging hands-on experiences in science.


          Fancy a peek at what goes on behind-the sciences in science? Discover the latest developments and research by researches from universities, research institutions and companies at X-periment!, a two-day science carnival, where they will demonstrate their new, cutting-edge innovations on the theme of Future Health. Great science discovery for the whole family!


          Singapore Largest Slime Installation
          13 Sep 2019 | Fusionopolis One | 10am - 6pm | Free

          SSF is on a mission to break another record! Contribute to the biggest slime installation in town by creating your very own batch of slime. Icky, gooey fun that is larger than life and great for a family day out.

          Special Science Show by Royal Institution
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Genesis Theatre, Fusionopolis One | 5:15pm | Free

          Brought to you all the way from the United Kingdom by Royal Institution, catch an exciting science spectacle featuring a host of live demonstrations sure to excite you!


          Witness energy work in action, from elastic to gravitational, kinetic to chemical, see some fiery and maybe even explosive demonstrations of what energy is and how it affects our lives.Explore the different types of energy stores, and how each of them can do work. From flaming butane bubbles to exploding tin cans, we look at the movement of energy from one store to another, underlining the notion that energy cannot be created or destroyed.

          "The Impossible" Science Sessions with Jason Latimer
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Genesis Theatre, Fusionopolis One | 2.30pm | Free


          Magic? Or just Science? Famed American magician Jason Latimer shows you the secret to “the Impossible”. From bending light to shaping water, take a journey beyond the illusions in a one of a kind magical science show!

          unbeli-BUBBLE
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Ecogarden, Science Centre Singapore | 10.30am – 12.30pm and 2pm – 4.30pm | Free but Science Centre admission charges apply


          Get your hands soapy and get ready to learn the science behind bubbles. Why are they round? Why do bubbles pop? Why do they stick together?  There is a lot more to know about bubbles through this amazing hands-on activity.

          The Inflatable Lungs Experience
          9 - 12 Sep 2019 & 13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Science Centre Singapore (9 - 12 Sep) & Fusionopolis (13 - 14 Sep) | 10:30am - 12:30pm and 2pm - 4:30pm | Free (Admission charges apply for Science Centre)


          Take a step into one of the largest organs in your body and learn more about our incredible lungs that keep us alive and breathing.


          For more information on more programmes and activities, visit Singapore Science Festival's website at https://www.science.edu.sg/whats-on/singapore-science-festival

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          My Family Weekend is back this year for the third year running! An initiative organised by the Families for Life Council, it kicks off this coming Friday, 6 Septemb er 2019 in conjunction with the Teachers' Day school holiday and lasts all the way until Sunday, 8 September 2019.


          The objective of My Family Weekend is simple - to make time for our family and celebrate family bonding through the many activities happening this weekend. As schools and pre-school centres will be closed on 6 September due to Teacher's Day, kids will have no school so a growing number of employers have already pledged their support to put in place family-friendly workplace options on this day to support family time.

          But more than that, there are plenty of events taking place this 7 & 8 September weekend - which happens to the the start of the Septemebr school holidays - and MOST OF THEM ARE FREE!

          THINGS TO DO ON 6 SEP, FRIDAY

          Kick things off on the right note on Eat With Your Family Day


          Now this is one event you can organise on your own! Eat with your Family Day has increased its frequency to four times and is held on the last Friday of each quarter. Remember to leave work on time and have a good meal together with your family!

          THINGS TO DO ON 7 SEP, SATURDAY

          My Family Weekend Picnic @ East Coast Park
          7 Sep 2019| 5pm - 9pm | East Coast Park - Angsana Green | Free Admission


          Join in the fun at My Family Weekend Picnic at East Coast Park (Angsana Green) with your family and extend family members (grandparents, aunties and uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews). There are many fun-filled family bonding activities and workshops such as Pop-up Adventure Playground, Batik Fan Painting, Shrink Art Keychain, Photo Booth, Mini Carnival Games and Music Performances. Not forgetting the all-time favourite FFL Picnic, FFL Bouncy Castles, FFL Mobile Café and Movie Under the Stars! Register via HERE.

          Highlights include:

          Families for Life Bouncy Castles
          The ever popular bouncy castles will never fail to bring out the smiles and laughter from the kids.

          Pop-Up Adventure Playground
          Have a taste of kampong spirit and play with many recyclable materials such as cardboard boxes, pots, tyres, strings, fabrics and other everyday objects.

          Batik Fan Painting (Workshop)
          Develop the family art skills and get to experience the fundamentals of batik painting on your own unique batik fan! Limited slots on a first-come-first-serve basis, while stock lasts.

          Shrink Art Keychain (Workshop)
          Make your own family keychain from start to finish! Design, draw and colour your won masterpiece before transforming it into a keychain. Limited slots on a first-come-first-serve basis, while stock lasts.

          Mini Carnival Games
          Have a fun filled experience at the mini carnival game booths where you and your family can test on your skills on reaction and accuracy!

          Families for Life Mobile Café 
          Drop by the FFL mobile café for FREE snacks and drinks and look out for the hourly specials!

          Music Performances
          Relax and enjoy the soothing sounds of live music performances.

          Movie Under The Stars - Paddington 2
          Cuddle up for Movie Screening under the stars and catch Paddington 2 with your family including extended family to wind down after a day of fun.

          For more details, visit HERE.

          Kiss92FM Discover Joy Carnival
          7 Sep 2019 | 3pm - 9pm | Clarke Quay Green (open field next to Liang Court) | Free Admission


          Play exciting games and picnic with the Kiss DJs at the Families For Life Zone, savour amazing food in the Celebration Zone, get active in the Vitality Zone, groove to the music from local bands 53A & Cold Cut Duo and ultimately chill & relax on the greens to catch a FREE movie screening of Avengers: Infinity War! Register via HERE.

          OUR ARMY DAYS
          7 Sep 2019 | 10am - 6pm | Singapore Discovery Centre | $12


          Relive your NS memories with a wide range of military related activities at S'pore Discovery Centre's signature event, OUR ARMY DAYS. Through the engaging activities, share with your family about your NS experiences. There will be three zones to challenge all toughies; Family, Survival and Warrior, bursting with a slew of challenging and exciting activity stations. Put yourself to the test and clear as many stations as possible. You can also stand to win fabulous prizes in the lucky draw!

          Family Zone:
          Pedal out on a resupply mission to replenish our equipment and necessities, learn basic first-aid skills, dress up the little ones in army uniform with face camo for a picture moment, get onboard the SAFTI Bus Tour, get tough at the nerf gun firing and many more! Perfect way to spend a great family-bonding Saturday with the little ‘rangers’. *Suitable for 3 and above

          Survival Zone:
          Challenge yourself and your friends at the Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT), learn basic jungle survival skills and conquer the mini Standard Obstacle Course (SOC). Test your fitness and push the limits – for honour and glory! *Suitable for 11 and above

          Warrior Zone:
          Defy gravity and scale the rock climbing wall, rough it out at the water obstacle course and take aim at the enemy targets! Warriors, gather your special task force now and conquer them all – may the force be with you! *Suitable for 14 and above

          For tickets, visit HERE.

          THINGS TO DO ON 8 SEP, SUNDAY

          My Family Fiesta @ SAFRA Punggol
          8 Sep 2019 | 9am to 6pm | SAFRA Punggol | Free Admission


          Spend quality time with your loved ones at My Family Fiesta – A day of family fun, games, activites and programmes catered just for you! Take part in SAFRA Punggol’s Kidz-preneur (Big Little Boss Edition), a fun-filled family bazaar, special vendor treats and much more!

          General Activities:
          - Arts & Family Bazaar
          - Activities by School of Concepts
          - Free flow Carnival Food & Drinks
          - opcorn & Candy Floss

          Big Little Boss Activities (Pre-Registration Required):
          - Kidz-preneur – Big Little Boss Edition
          - Little Pizza Chef by Pizza Hut

          Big Little Boss Activities (Walk-In):
          - Little News Anchor by SAFRA Digital Media Club
          - Little Engineer
          - Little Palaeontologist
          - Little Builder
          - Little Fireman
          - Little Golfer

          For more details, visit HERE.

          Guided Walk Along Singapore River
          8 Sep 2019 | 5pm to 6.45pm | Open Park Space Opposite Great World City Office Towers | FREE


          Come experience the history of Singapore River coming to life! Enjoy a fun Sunday with your families at the Singapore River Guided Walk as you journey down memory lane & take pictures with Sir Stamford Raffles & Samsui Women Live Characters.

          The walk will start at the open park space just next to Kim Seng Promenade (adjacent to Great World City Office Towers) by the Singapore River and end before 6.45 pm at the same location. There will be light refreshments so that families can connect with one another during and after the walk. Event is FREE but registration is compulsory. Register via HERE.


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          Media Invite

          If you have been keeping up with the news the past weekend, you will know that the dinosaurs are in town. Walking with Dinosaurs - The Live Experience was last staged in Singapore in 2010 and back then, I brought Ash and Ayd to the show - Ale was still an infant - and they absolutely loved it.


          Fast forward nine years later, did they still enjoy it? Well in all honesty, they did find some parts a little draggy but I did notice a difference... when they first caught the show in 2010, they were young kids and were very much in awe of the giant dinosaurs stomping around in the Singapore Indoor Stadium. Now, they were keeping an eye out for the animatronics used in the movement of the dinosaurs!


          Yes, [SPOILER ALERT] the dinosaurs are NOT real. 😂 The larger dinos such as Stegosaurus and Brachiosaurus are animatronic, while the smaller creatures such as the fierce Utahraptor and baby T-rex are crew members in dino suits.


          But try telling that to the young kids in the audience.


          The movement of the life-sized dinosaurs are so realistic that they will be able to suspend belief just for that 1.5 hours, seeing them running, roaring, fighting and of course, walking as if dinosaurs were never extinct in the first place.




          The show focuses on the three periods of the dinosaurs' reign; the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous. A palaeontologist named Huxley adds context to the action by imparting various facts and nuggets of information, adding educational value to the spectacle.




          And here's a tip: I would totally recommend getting the front row seats in the middle section if your kids are huge fans of dinosaurs. That's because a real highlight of the show were two life-size Brachiosaurus' leaning over the crowd, delighting the audience.



          Despite knowing they were only animatronic dinosaurs, this scene gave me goosbumps.

          Oh, and of course, what's a dino show without the Tyrannosaurus rex, which is saved for last. It too makes a stop right in front of the audience, letting out a mighty roar.


          And let me just say it was so super realistic that a little girl in the audience broke into tears. Oops. But then, we also see the other type of kids - kids who raise their hands up and roar right back!


          So while kids will certainly have an absolute blast at Walking With Dinosaurs – The Live Experience, it is not just for the little ones. The craftsmanship, puppetry and sound effects are excellent.



          And with a perfect blend of awesome special effects and interesting scientific details, Walking With Dinosaurs - The Live Experience is a sheer spectacle that will have the kids shrieking in excitement.



          GIVEAWAY

          Want to catch Walking With Dinosaurs – The Live Experience with your family? I have FOUR tickets worth $512 to give away to one lucky family, thanks to Sliding Doors Entertainment!

          IMPORTANT: The Cat 2 tickets are strictly valid for the 7pm show on 6 September 2019.

          To participate, all you have to do is the following:

          1. LIKE Sliding Doors Entertainment's Facebook page HERE.
          2. Tell me why you wish to win the tickets. Leave your comment either in the corresponding Facebook post HERE or in this blog post.


          INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING!
          SHARE this blog post of the giveaway on Facebook for a BONUS chance! Remember to set your profile to public so that I can see the shared post.

          Giveaway ends on 3 September 2019, 2359 hours.

          GOOD LUCK! 😊


          Useful Information

          Walking With Dinosaurs – The Live Experience
          Dates: Now until 8 September 2019
          Timings: Various Timings
          Venue:  Singapore Indoor Stadium
          Price: $58, $68, $88 (discounted) and $148
          Tickets

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          On 7 September 2019, bring your kids down to Singapore Discovery Centre's OUR ARMY DAYS and let them learn more about the Army's training through fun and engaging ways. Dads, especially will be able to relive their NS memories with a wide range of military-related activities and share with their family about their NS experiences!


          There will be three zones to challenge all toughies; Family, Survival and Warrior, bursting with a slew of challenging and exciting activity stations. Put yourself to the test and clear as many stations as possible and stand to win fabulous prizes in the lucky draw!


          FAMILY ZONE (12 Stations)
          Recommended for children aged 3 years and above

          1. Resupply Mission
          Venue: SDC Lake
          Participants (1 adult &1 1 child) will venture out on a pedal boat with a box of 'ammunition'. They will be tasked to race to an inflatable pool to deposit the box; simulating a re-supply mission and pedal back.

          2. Firers Watch Your Front
          Venue: Loyalty and Confidence Classroom
          Participants will get the chance to experience the basics for rifle range - holding the rifle, positioning, sighting, breathing and taking aim. They will then exercise the fundamentals of marksmanship on 2 x Fig. 12 pop-up targets and then take down the targets with automatic Nerf rifles.

          3. Grenade Throwing
          Venue: Unity/Wisdom Classroom
          Experience grenade throwing like in BMT training! Station masters will role play as commanders guiding participants in the proper process of throwing a grenade at the enemy.

          4. Colours of our Emblem
          Venue: Function Room Both inside & outside)
          Take part in the colouring of a military-themed art canvas.

          5. Dress Up (Photo Booth)
          Venue: Concourse (Lake-half)
          Kids will get to try on No. 4 & No. 1 uniforms, and snap photos.

          6. Face Painting
          Venue: Concourse (Lake-half)
          Kids can get their face painted with camouflage cream.

          7. Left-Right-Left
          Venue: Concourse (Lake-half)
          Children will try simple commands, such as Attention, At Ease, Turn Left, Turn Right and Kelaur Baris.

          8. SAF 101
          Venue: PEG (Outside Concourse)
          Embark on a self-guided tour at the Founding Leaders and Security Pavilion galleries to answer 8 questions. Receive an Aide Memoire upon completion.

          9. Medic! Medic! Medic!
          Venue: Blackbox
          Participants will receive CPR and AED lessons, and try their hand on practicing these skills on medical dummies.

          10. SAFTI Bus Tour
          Departing times: 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm & 5pm
          Enjoy a tour through SAFTI MI and get to know the intricate details and history of the iconic place.

          11. Short Film Marathon
          Screening of 3 short films: Gallant, SQ117 & Blood, Sweat and Tears.

          12. Stage Performances
          Enjoy music performances from 10.30am to 5.30pm. Stay on for the grand lucky draw at 5.30pm for a chance to win a Samsung S10, 2D1N Staycation at RWS, Nintendo Switch or $100 Capitaland vouchers!

          SURVIVAL ZONE (5 Stations)
          Recommended for children aged 11 years and above

          1. IPPT Challenge
          Venue: Discovery Land
          Participants get to try 2 out of 3 stations based on the new IPPT stations - they will have to do as many reps of either push-ups or sit-ups within 1 minute.

          2. Strike Observer Mission
          Venue: Forested Path near Discovery Land
          Kids will use binoculars to recce their assigned sectors and report the number of enemies and weapons.

          3. For Honour and Glory
          Venue: Discovery Land
          A giant inflatable obstacle course! 'Nuff said.

          4. Survival Village
          Venue: Open field next to Discovery Land


          Go through a workshop on jungle survival and a demonstration on basha-pitching. Kids can even try their hand at heating up combat rations to taste!

          5. SOC
          Venue: Mini SOC ground behind Army Museum
          Kids will be coached on how to clear the mini Standard Obstacle Course and challenge their physical and agility skills.

          WARRIOR ZONE (4 Stations)
          Recommended for children aged 14 years and above

          1. OTOT Carry On! (Paintball)
          Venue: Paintball Area
          Enjoy the thrill and learn about the basics of shooting at the paintball range. For 14 years old and above only.

          2. Scaling New Heights
          Venue: Along Hormat Ave
          Experience the thrills of rock-climbing and challenge one another in a race to the top!

          3. Chiong Ah!
          Venue: SDC Lake



          Clear a water obstacle course over the SDC lake! Just remember to bring an extra set of clothes. Participants must be 1.2m and above.

          4. FIBUA
          Venue: Multi-purpose Hall



          FIBUA stands for fighting in built-up areas, where participants will engage a force-on-force urban operations battle with laser tag weapons while navigating through an inflatable maze at the same time!

          WOW, those are sure a lot of activities to try out for one single day!

          Ticket price is $12 per person and includes the following:

          - Admission to OUR ARMY DAYS on 7 Sep 2019.
          - Unlimited number of tries for each station within the opening hours on 7 Sep.
          - Entry into OUR ARMY DAYS lucky draw held on 7 Sep 2019.
          - Admission for the latest blockbuster movie at iWERKS Theatre (Valid from 7 Sep to 31 Dec 2019).
          - Admission to the SDC’s new and exciting Military XD Ride (Valid from 7 Sep to 31 Dec 2019).
          - Admission to SDC’s exhibitions for all ticket holders including foreigners.

          Yes, the ticket admission also allows you to watch one movie at iWERKS Theatre. Psst, new movies like Frozen 2 and the new Star Wars movie are coming out at the end of the year so keep your tickets until then! Considering weekend prices at the movies is $12.50, it is not too bad a deal!

          Do note that children 2 years and below do not require a ticket.

          Purchase your tickets via HERE.


          FLASH GIVEAWAY!

          I have FIVE tickets worth $60 to give away to one lucky family!

          To participate, all you have to do is tell me which station your kid will love! Leave your comment either in the corresponding Facebook post HERE or in this blog post.


          INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING!
          SHARE this blog post of the giveaway on Facebook for a BONUS chance! Remember to set your profile to public so that I can see the shared post.

          Giveaway ends on 4 September 2019, 1800 hours.

          GOOD LUCK! 😊

          Useful Information

          OUR ARMY DAYS
          Date: 7 Sep 2019
          Time: 10am - 6pm
          Venue: Singapore Discovery Centre
          Tickets: $12
          Website

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          Gosh, is it September already? Kids enjoy a 10-day break from school, thanks to Teachers' Day and the September school holidays. Yes, soon it will be the final year exams all over again but first, there's some fun still to be had.


          As usual, there are loads of holiday activities happening this one week school break - more than FIFTY activities in fact! ENJOY! 😄


          Walking with Dinosaurs - The Live Experience
          Now til 8 Sep 2019
          Various Timings
          Singapore Indoor Stadium
          Price: $58, $68, $88 (discounted) and $148


          After 65 million years – they’re back! Seen by over 9 million people in more than 250 cities around the world, WALKING WITH DINOSAURS – The Live Experience, based on the award-winning BBC Television series, roars into Singapore! Be amazed and thrilled as the greatest pre-historic creatures ever to walk the earth return before your eyes. The dazzling $20 million production features state-of-the-art technology, making this the biggest and best dinosaur show in the world. Read my review HERE and for tickets, visit here.

          Jalan-Jalan With Disney’s Mickey Mouse & Friends
          Now until 8 Sep 2019; 12pm to 8pm
          Waterway Point, Village Square, West Wing, Level 1


          Stroll through streets of magic, from a Mickey-inspired trishaw experience to a Minnie-themed cable car photo opportunity. Plus, get a chance to meet Mickey & Minnie, shop brand-new Disney’s Mickey Go Singapore merchandise and join craft workshops.

          Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse Meet & Greet
          7 September 2019 | 2pm, 4pm & 6pm | Village Square, West Wing, Level 1
          Meet and Greet passes will be distributed 30-minutes before each session on a first-come, first-served basis.

          Mid-Autumn Festival @ Jurong Lake Gardens
          6 - 15 Sep 2019; 6pm - 11pm
          Jurong Lake Gardens
          FREE


          Come celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival at Jurong Lake Gardens! Join us on a journey to the West with characters from popular Chinese folklore and watch the garden transform into a mythical world surrounded by a myriad of plants and animals at night. Partake in the festivities as a family and plan your very own lantern walk in the gardens. Enjoy performances which will happen daily and refuel yourself at the night market with a variety of food and drinks at the Wave Plaza. Admission is free! For a detailed listing of all activities and shows, visit HERE.

          FREE Entry to Jurong Bird Park
          6 - 15 Sep 2019
          Jurong Bird Park
          FREE Admission (with gated attractions)


          In celebration of 10 years of bird conservation, Jurong Bird Park is opening its gates to all local residents for free*! For 10 days from 6 – 15 September 2019, Singaporeans, Permanent Residents and FIN holders can enter Jurong Bird Park for free. Purchase coupons to enter gated aviaries and experience special activities. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          *Nominal charges apply for entry into gated aviaries, shows and Birdz of Play area. Local residents only.


          SMU Arts Festival 2019
          6 - 15 Sep 2019
          Various Timings & Locations
          FREE & Ticketed


          The Singapore Management University (SMU) Arts Festival is an annual showcase of creative expression through the arts. Featuring events comprising a range of art forms including music, dance, theatre, literary as well as visual arts, the festival provides a purposeful opportunity to bring the arts to the public audience. For more information on performances, visit HERE.

          Geylang Serai Family Carnival
          6 - 15 Sep 2019; 12pm - 10pm
          1 Engku Aman turn (Open Field) next to Wisma Geylang Serai
          FREE Admission


          Have a super September school holiday at the Geylang Serai Family Carnival! Head down to WGS from 6-15 Sep, 12 noon till 10pm for a whale of time with your whole family and enjoy games, rides, educational activities and performances galore!

          West Marsh Visit with the 'Kranji Marshals'
          7 Sep 2019; 7.30am - 11am
          Kranji Marshes (Enter and exit the West Marsh from the gate near Moorhen Blind)
          FREE

          The West Marsh, within the Core Conservation Area of Kranji Marshes, is a special area designated for the conservation of marsh birds. To minimise disturbances to these shy animals and other wildlife, access to this section is restricted to guided activities organised by NParks and its partners. Several times a year, visitors can access this section when NParks volunteers (the 'Kranji Marshals') conduct station-guiding. They will be stationed at the hides and strategic locations to help you appreciate the beauty of the marsh habitat.

          A loop around West Marsh is about 1.2 km and takes about 20 minutes to complete. This includes about 400 m of narrow and uneven rocky path, which is not recommended for young children without supervision. Visitors are advised to wear comfortable walking shoes, and exercise caution when walking on this path.

          OUR ARMY DAYS
          7 Sep 2019; 10am - 6pm 
          Singapore Discovery Centre
          $12


          Relive your NS memories with a wide range of military related activities at S'pore Discovery Centre's signature event, OUR ARMY DAYS. Through the engaging activities, share with your family about your NS experiences. There will be three zones to challenge all toughies; Family, Survival and Warrior, bursting with a slew of challenging and exciting activity stations. Put yourself to the test and clear as many stations as possible. You can also stand to win fabulous prizes in the lucky draw! For tickets, visit HERE.

          Kiss92FM Discover Joy Carnival
          7 Sep 2019; 3pm - 9pm
          Clarke Quay Green (open field next to Liang Court)
          FREE Admission


          Play exciting games and picnic with the Kiss DJs at the Families For Life Zone, savour amazing food in the Celebration Zone, get active in the Vitality Zone, groove to the music from local bands 53A & Cold Cut Duo and ultimately chill & relax on the greens to catch a FREE movie screening of Avengers: Infinity War! Register via HERE.

          My Family Weekend Picnic @ East Coast Park
          7 Sep 2019; 5pm - 9pm;
          East Coast Park - Angsana Green
          FREE Admission


          Join in the fun at My Family Weekend Picnic at East Coast Park (Angsana Green) with your family and extend family members (grandparents, aunties and uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews). There are many fun-filled family bonding activities and workshops such as Pop-up Adventure Playground, Batik Fan Painting, Shrink Art Keychain, Photo Booth, Mini Carnival Games and Music Performances. Not forgetting the all-time favourite FFL Picnic, FFL Bouncy Castles, FFL Mobile Café and Movie Under the Stars! Register via HERE.

          Korea-Singapore Jazz Night (2019 Korea Festival)
          7 Sep 2019; 6pm - 7.15pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          As part of the on-going initiative to promote cultural exchange between Korea and Singapore, the annual Korea Festival presents a musical concert by the hottest artists of the nation in its programme of events. This year, Korea-Singapore Jazz Night, presented by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, will mark the very first time jazz concert featured in the line-up of the Festival.

          Jazz Night will feature two groups of esteemed performers from the local jazz scenes of both countries – the homegrown Jazz Association (Singapore)’s JASS Ensemble led by Music Director and Singapore’s “King of Swing,” Jeremy Monteiro, and Heo So-young, an acclaimed jazz vocalist hailing from Korea, together with her band. Additionally, the Heo So-young band and the JASS Ensemble will be bringing forth a selection of traditional folk classics from both nations, “Singapura" and “Arirang", in a special collaborative performance that showcases the best of both cultures.

          Ci Yuan Night 2019
          7 Sep 2019; 6pm - 9.30pm
          Ci Yuan Community Club
          $2 per ticket


          Gambas Mid-Autumn Celebration
          7 Sep 2019; 6.30pm
          Blk 414 Yishun Ring Road courtyard
          FREE


          Movie Night at The Oval
          7 Sep 2019; 4pm - 10pm
          The Oval (3 Park Lane, Singapore 798387)
          FREE


          Go  early and grab the best spots for the free screening of DC superhero flick Aquaman at our Open Lawn on Saturday, 7th September. If you’re hungry for movie snacks, drop bythe popcorn and cotton candy booth and have some sweet treats on the house! Before the movie starts at 7:30pm, a series of Mid-Autumn Festival themed crafting workshops will kick things off at 4pm. Start your festivities early by creating balloon sculptures, paper fans and lanterns!

          Andy Griffith's The 13-Storey Treehouse: Live on Stage
          Sat 7 Sep: 11am, 2pm, 4.30pm | Sun 8 Sep: 11am, 2.30pm
          SOTA Drama Theatre
          $62, $52, $40


          Based on the No. 1 international bestseller and multi-award winning book series by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton, The 13-Storey Treehouse is coming to the stage! Who wouldn't want to live in a tree house? Especially a 13-Story Treehouse that has everything; a bowling alley, a secret underground laboratory, and self-making beds, for starters!  Andy and Terry live there, make stories together, and have a series of completely silly adventures…There's just one problem. They forgot to write the play! And where will they find flying cats, a mermaid, a sea monster, an invasion of monkeys, and a giant gorilla? For tickets, visit HERE.

          Japan Summer Festival
          7 & 8 Sep 2019; 12pm - 9pm
          National Stadium
          Online price: $6 (til 6 Sep 2019)
          Actual day: $8
          Free admission for children below the height of 1.2m


          The Japan Summer Festival held in conjunction with Sports Hub Community Play Day returns to the National Stadium with bigger and better line-up of fun, food and activities. Visitors can get to experience true Japan right at this immersive cultural exchange event with over 100 authentic Japanese stalls, Pokemon Carnival, Pikachu Dance Parade, all-day stage performances, traditional Bon-Odori dance, Yukata try-out and many more. For more information and tickets, visit HERE.

          Wan Qing Mid-Autumn Festival 2019
          7 & 8 Sep 2019
          10am - 9pm
          Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall
          FREE Admission

          An array of engaging activities will be organised during the weekend festival on 7 and 8 September, such as heritage trails, storytelling of Chinese fables & tales, live music performances, and art & craft activities. The festival highlight on 7 September will include the penning of Mid-Autumn well-wishes on larger-than-life Sky Lantern helium balloons and a subsequent release of the lanterns into the night sky. For more details on activities, visit HERE.

          Nickelodeon Slime Time
          7 - 15 Sep 2019
          11am - 9pm daily
          City Square Mall, L1 Atrium
          Spend $50 to redeem an event passport


          It’s All Slime, Fun, and Adventure at City Square Mall this September School Holiday! From 7 to 15 Sep 2019, there will be slime-filled activity stations such as the iconic Slime Shower, Slime Escape Room or keep yourself dry at the Colouring Wall and Playground.

          Weekends in the Park: Family Yoga
          8 Sep 2019; 8am - 9am
          Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, Tecoma Green
          FREE

          Soak in the morning sun with a family yoga session in the park, every second Sunday of the month! Take the opportunity to enjoy the vast open lawns, lush banks of wildflowers and unique waterways. For the young ones that enjoy a splash, bring a change of clothes and head over to the ever popular Water Playground! FREE but pre-register HERE.

          My Family Fiesta @ SAFRA Punggol
          8 Sep 2019; 9am to 6pm
          SAFRA Punggol
          FREE Admission


          Spend quality time with your loved ones at My Family Fiesta – A day of family fun, games, activites and programmes catered just for you! Take part in SAFRA Punggol’s Kidz-preneur (Big Little Boss Edition), a fun-filled family bazaar, special vendor treats and much more!

          General Activities:
          - Arts & Family Bazaar
          - Activities by School of Concepts
          - Free flow Carnival Food & Drinks
          - opcorn & Candy Floss

          Big Little Boss Activities (Pre-Registration Required):
          - Kidz-preneur – Big Little Boss Edition
          - Little Pizza Chef by Pizza Hut

          Big Little Boss Activities (Walk-In):
          - Little News Anchor by SAFRA Digital Media Club
          - Little Engineer
          - Little Palaeontologist
          - Little Builder
          - Little Fireman
          - Little Golfer

          For more details, visit HERE.

          Guided Walk Along Singapore River
          8 Sep 2019; 5pm to 6.45pm
          Open Park Space Opposite Great World City Office Towers
          FREE


          Come experience the history of Singapore River coming to life! Enjoy a fun Sunday with your families at the Singapore River Guided Walk as you journey down memory lane & take pictures with Sir Stamford Raffles & Samsui Women Live Characters.

          The walk will start at the open park space just next to Kim Seng Promenade (adjacent to Great World City Office Towers) by the Singapore River and end before 6.45 pm at the same location. There will be light refreshments so that families can connect with one another during and after the walk. Event is FREE but registration is compulsory. Register via HERE.

          PianoBotanica
          8 Sep 2019; 6pm - 7pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          PianoBotanica is back, in its annual feature of Bossa Nova and other Brazilian rhythms. In memory of the passing of legendary Brazilian singer, songwriter and guitarist João Gilberto, often called “father of Bossa Nova” and “O Mito”, in July 2019, INDIGO, a group of talented musicians from Singapore, will perform his best-known works as a tribute to him. While being profoundly rooted in Brazilian sounds and syncopations, João Gilberto found a language that has been inspiring and delighting people all over the world since the 1950s.

          Singapore Night Festival 2019
          Now until 8 Sep 2019; 10am - 7pm
          National Museum of Singapore
          Free Admission


          Even though Singapore Night Festival 2019 has concluded, THREE installations are still opened to the public at the National Museum of Singapore... and they are FREE to visit! Of the three, WHISPERS is the one not to be missed. For more photos and details, visit my previous post HERE.

          Sunset Walk at Jurong Lake Gardens
          9 - 15 Sep 2019; 6.30pm - 7.30pm
          Jurong Lake Gardens, Entrance Pavilion
          FREE (Pre-registration required)

          Soak in the festivities and bring your own lanterns* when you join us for our sunset walk around the gardens! Join in the evening saunters at the Jurong Lake Gardens this Mid-Autumn Festival. Happening daily until 15 September, be enthralled by NParks' guides who will be sharing fun facts and stories of the plants and animals in the garden. Capture mesmerising sunset moments and watch our life-sized lanterns come alive in their splendid display of colours.

          *Battery-operated lanterns only. Candle lanterns are not allowed in the Gardens.

          Register via the links below:
          9 Sep2019
          10 Sep 2019
          11 Sep 2019
          12 Sep 2019
          13 Sep 2019
          14 Sep 2019
          15 Sep 2019

          Pet’s Day Out
          9 - 15 Sep 2019; 11am – 10pm
          Bukit Panjang Plaza, Level 2, Atrium


          In celebration of Singapore Pets Week, Purrfect Woof Gang brings you a fun-filled event! Enjoy great deals on a wide variety of pet-related goods from Artero, K9 Natural, Acana and Orijen. Check out the petting zoo and educational activities where you can learn about topics like pet grooming, positive dog training and more!

          Fantastic Mr Fox in Mandarin了不起的狐狸爸爸
          Now until 13 Sep 2019
          Weekdays: 10am | Weekends: 11am & 2pm | 8 Sep: 11am & 2pm | 9 Sep: 2pm
          KC Arts Centre
          $26, $29


          Watch Fantastic Mr Fox in Mandarin! Fantastic Mr Fox is a classic tale of goodies and baddies. It is an inspiring story about the brave and clever Mr Fox who, with the help of his family and friends, outsmarts three farmers’ nasty schemes in order to provide food for the animal community. Filled with humour and packed with action, this is a fantastic show to be enjoyed by children of all ages. For tickets, visit HERE.

          Lion City Gathering 2019
          12 - 15 Sep 2019
          The Star Vista
          FREE


          Bask in the excitement of Lion City Gathering, a four-day Parkour event where local and international practitioners display their skills in running, jumping and climbing. Be inspired to challenge yourselves at the kids and adult Parkour workshops on site, and don't miss out on watching the top athletes throw down in the Asian Parkour Championships! Visit www.lioncitygathering.com for details.

          Lantern Walk with Tayo the Little Bus
          13 Sep 2019; 7.30pm
          Downtown East


          one-north Festival 2019
          13 - 14 Sep 2019; 11am - 6pm
          Fusionopolis One
          FREE


          Jointly organised by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), JTC, and the Science Centre Singapore, this very exciting event welcomes the public to immerse in science and technology through fun interactive displays, inspiring talks, workshops and tours for the whole family.

          Come and experience fun and interactive displays from schools, scientists and entrepreneurs to address the global challenges of sustainability. Meet leading scientists and innovators and get hands-on with community activities designed to entertain all in the family!

          Singapore Largest Slime Installation
          13 Sep 2019 | Fusionopolis One | 10am - 6pm | Free
          SSF is on a mission to break another record! Contribute to the biggest slime installation in town by creating your very own batch of slime. Icky, gooey fun that is larger than life and great for a family day out.

          Special Science Show by Royal Institution
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Genesis Theatre, Fusionopolis One | 5:15pm | Free
          Brought to you all the way from the United Kingdom by Royal Institution, catch an exciting science spectacle featuring a host of live demonstrations sure to excite you! Witness energy work in action, from elastic to gravitational, kinetic to chemical, see some fiery and maybe even explosive demonstrations of what energy is and how it affects our lives.Explore the different types of energy stores, and how each of them can do work. From flaming butane bubbles to exploding tin cans, we look at the movement of energy from one store to another, underlining the notion that energy cannot be created or destroyed.

          "The Impossible" Science Sessions with Jason Latimer
          13 - 14 Sep 2019 | Genesis Theatre, Fusionopolis One | 2.30pm | Free
          Magic? Or just Science? Famed American magician Jason Latimer shows you the secret to “the Impossible”. From bending light to shaping water, take a journey beyond the illusions in a one of a kind magical science show!

          The Inflatable Lungs Experience
          Fusionopolis (13 - 14 Sep) | 10:30am - 12:30pm and 2pm - 4:30pm | Free
          Take a step into one of the largest organs in your body and learn more about our incredible lungs that keep us alive and breathing.

          Mid-Autumn Yeah!
          13 & 14 Sep 2019
          Fri: 7pm - 10pm | Sat: 1pm - 10pm
          Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre
          FREE Admission (Certain activities ticketed)


          Beyond the popular folklore of Chang’e and Hou Yi, Mid-Autumn Festival celebrates the bountiful harvest to come. Join in the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre’s Mid-Autumn Yeah! celebration and reap your own harvest of knowledge by discovering traditions anew and immersing in a feast for the senses with friends and family! Plan a heist to break into the Moon Vault in search of the secret recipe for the Divine Mooncake in an escape-room activity, learn about the secrets of the night sky through a series of planetarium shows; revel in songs that wax lyrical about the moon; or concoct your very own cup of bubble tea while learning about tea traditions. Whether you are a culture buff, someone who wants to learn more about our heritage, or a visitor who simply wants to have an enjoyable time with loved ones, Mid-Autumn Yeah! promises something exciting in store for everyone. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          Moonfest 2019
          13 - 15 Sep 2019; Various Timings
          Esplanade
          FREE & Ticketed


          Moonfest – A Mid-Autumn Celebration is an annual traditional Chinese arts festival held in celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival. Now in its 15th edition, Moonfest presents the opportunity for families and friends, young and old to be exposed to and rediscover the intrinsic beauty of traditional Chinese arts through an exciting line-up of free programmes and ticketed workshops.

          This year’s highlights include:

          - Classic Xiqu excerpts performed by “Little Plum Blossom” artists, which is the highest accolade given to young Xiqu performers below the age of 14 in China.
          - Taishan Shadow Puppetry performances where the skillful puppeteer from China demonstrates the controlling of shadow puppets, singing and playing percussion instruments all at the same time.
          - Nostalgic street opera performances of classic excerpts by Sin Yong Hua Heng Teochew Opera Troupe under a moonlit night.
          - A unique performance that blends Chinese crosstalk— a witty, humorous and light-hearted performing art—and a cappella music by Soo Wee Seng, Ho Jia Wen & The Apex Project.
          - A fun-filled performance by Singapore’s top radio group Yu Jian Huang Chong—comprising Chen Biyu, Marcus Chin, Mark Lee and Dennis Chew—featuring folk, dialect and xinyao music, and memorable movie theme songs.
          - Ever-popular Lantern Walkabout on 14 Sep where limited free lanterns will be given out.

          There will also be a series of ticketed Parent-Child Workshops where families can bond and learn more about Xiqu, shadow puppetry and Shaolin martial arts, or make their own lanterns. Those who are musically inclined can also try their hand at playing a hulusi (a folk wind instrument from China that is shaped like a gourd) at the Let’s Learn to Play the Hulusi! ticketed workshop conducted by Jonathan Tan from Dicapella Dizi Ensemble.

          For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          Ecolife at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
          14 Sep 2019; 9am - 11am
          Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, Promenade
          FREE (Pre-registration required)

          This family tour introduces Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park and its biodiversity through the use of interactive exploration themes and activities. Have fun working together to answer worksheets, conduct surveys and photo hunts, among other activities. To register, visit HERE.


          Evening Chorus at Kranji Marshes
          14 Sep 2019; 4.30pm - 6.30pm
          Kranji Marshes (Meeting point is at Kranji Gate, 11 Neo Tiew Lane 2)
          FREE (Pre-registration compulsory)

          The walk will introduce participants to this unique nature area and the species which are living in its marsh, woodland and grass habitats. Participants will be guided through the ecologically sensitive core conservation area which is not usually opened to the public. The approximately 3 km guided walk will take visitors on a two-hour journey. *Registration opens on 6 September 2019 (Friday) at 8am. To register, visit HERE.

          Weekends in the Park
          14 & 15 Sep 2019; 9am - 6pm
          East Coast Park, Marine Cove
          FREE


          Prepare yourself and your little ones for fun in the great outdoors! Drop in for free workshops and reduce, reuse and recycle at the same time!

          Mid Autumn Festival @ Robertson Quay
          14 Sep 2019: 3pm - 10pm
          15 Sep 2019: 2pm - 6pm
          Robertson Walk
          FREE (except for Lantern Walkabout & Boat ride)


          Let’s reminisce about the good old days with “Mid-Autumn Festival @ Robertson Quay”. Expect old-school lantern walkabout along the river juxtaposed with new-school creation of a human claw machine! Not forgetting our favourite LED Kite performance to end off the night. Complete with a boat ride experience along Singapore River, this mid-autumn festival will be a truly unique experience for all.

          Purchase a ticket ($25 or $80 for 4) to join in for the Lantern walkabout and Boat ride happening only on 14th Sep (6pm-8pm) HERE.


          Free Entry to National Orchid Garden

          Now until 15 Sep 2019
          8.30am - 7pm
          National Orchid Garden
          FREE


          Enjoy free admission to National Orchid Garden from 31 Aug to 15 Sep for students, Singaporeans, Permanent Residents and Work Permit Holders. Last entry to the National Orchid Garden is 6pm daily. Students are required to present valid student cards. Singaporeans, Permanent Residents, Work Permit Holders and Dependent Pass Holders are required to present their ID cards or relevant documentation.

          Mid-Autumn Festival 2019 @ Gardens by the Bay
          Now until 15 Sep 2019; 7pm - 11pm
          Gardens by the Bay
          FREE


          Enjoy spectacular lantern sets depicting stories of rich tradition and heritage. Don’t miss the tallest and widest ever display of floating lanterns stretching over 120m, and take a stroll within the very first giant revolving lantern!


          For a detailed listing of all activities and performances, visit HERE.

          Orchid Extravaganza
          Now until 15 Sep 2019; 9am - 9pm
          Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay
          Admission charge applies
          *Singapore residents enjoy $4 off admission rates to Flower Dome from 5 to 31 aug 2019!


          This year’s Orchid Extravaganza celebrates Singapore’s pop culture with a creative spin on familiar icons, as seen through the eyes of multi-talented Singaporean singer-songwriter Dick Lee. Melding floral artistry and pop art, the orchid display features landmarks and objects that have become part of local culture. From housing to recreation and food, these have been given a playful makeover under the creative direction of Dick Lee and designer Yang Derong, to reflect Singapore’s unique blend of tradition and modernity. They stand out amidst a colourful landscape of over 15,000 orchids, comprising more than 80 varieties including heritage orchids such as Aranthera Anne Black, Aranda Bertha Braga and Dendrobium Tay Swee Keng.

          Sentosa Sandsation: Star Wars Edition
          Now until 15 Sep 2019
          10am - 8.30pm daily
          Siloso Beach, Sentosa
          FREE Admission


          Enjoy FREE entry into Sentosa from now till 15 Sept, as Siloso Beach turns into a legendary tribute to STAR WARS with 20 massive sculptures of all your favourite characters, an international sand sculpting competition, sand sculpting workshops and more. Make time for an epic escape to an island not that far away. See HERE for more of my photos.

          KidZ & Innovation Holiday Programme
          Now until 15 Sep 2019
          KidZania Singapore
          Admission charges apply


          Young learners can get a glimpse into the exciting world of science and technology only at KidZania Singapore this September school holiday! Kids can try their hand at 3D drawing, coding, augmented and virtual reality, plus other fun activities! For more details, visit HERE.

          Moonstruck At Singapore Sports Hub
          Now until 19 Sep 2019
          Various Timings
          Singapore Sports Hub
          FREE

          Join in the fun to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival with hands-on activities, folklore, lantern-making contest and more! Registration for most activities are FREE. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          Vivocity's Curious Adventures in Wonderland
          Now until 22 Sep 2019; 7pm - 10pm
          Vivocity, Sky Park, Level 3
          FREE


          Embark on a Curious Adventure in Wonderland this Mid-Autumn at VivoCity and step into a world of wonder, created by a mesmerising display of lanterns at the Sky Park! Journey down the rabbit hole for a glimpse into an illuminated world of curious adventures this Mid-Autumn! Immerse yourself in 5 larger-than-life whimsical zones made of lanterns.

          Wonderland
          Now until 22 Sep 2019; 10am - 7pm daily
          ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands
          Opening hours: 10am - 7pm daily
          From $15 per Adult & $11 per Child for Singapore residents


          Wonderland is a playful and interactive exhibition for all ages, based on Lewis Carroll’s timeless stories of Alice and her adventures. Wonderland is a one-of-a-kind exhibition which follows Alice’s journey through popular culture and reveals how artists and filmmakers have portrayed Alice and her story for over a century. Visitors will step into an enchanted world that draws together a remarkable selection of over 300 artefacts and objects, including first edition books, drawings, original costumes, films, magic lantern projectors, and more. Developed by Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), this immersive exhibition makes the first stop of its global tour at ArtScience Museum. Visit the Website for more information.

          Mid-Autumn @ Chinatown 2019
          Now until 28 Sep 2019
          Street Light-up: 7pm – 12mn (Sun – Thur) | 7pm – 2am (Fri & Sat)
          Chinatown
          FREE


          The celebrations will showcase an exciting, colourful and vibrant month-long programmes from 31 August to 28 September 2019. During this period, Chinatown will be soaked in festivities and beautifully adorned with colourful lanterns and dazzling decorations. Come and join us to appreciate and experience the allure and significance of this Chinese traditional festival.

          Mass Lantern Walk
          8 Sep 2019 | 7pm - 10pm | Starting point – Kreta Ayer Square; Ending point – Along New Bridge Road | FREE
          Enjoy a fun night out with your family and friends with your creative lanterns as you join in the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival 2019 Mass Lantern Walk that is open to the general public. Immerse yourself in the festive spirit as you soak in the leisurely-paced lantern parade procession under the full moon and the dazzling displays around Chinatown. Don’t miss the impressive acts of the dragon dance troupes, energetic cheerleaders and the percussion band along the way! The lantern walk will conclude with stage performances, pyrotechnics and fireworks display in the heart of Chinatown.

          DinoQuest
          Now until 29 Sep 2019
          Science Centre, The Annexe
          $18/ adult, $15/ child, $52/ family


          Discover how different fields of science work together in a real-life dinosaur expedition at Science Centre Singapore’s latest exhibition, DinoQuest. Also, find out more about the science of palaeontology and the process of fossilisation.

          Curated by world-renowned palaeontologist Emerita Professor Patricia Vickers-Rich, DinoQuest spans across seven thematic zones that promise a multi-sensory experience like no other. An ambitious gamification creation that blends the latest multimedia technology, from holographic mapping to augmented and virtual reality environments, with dramatic fossil displays and ancient backdrops, be transported into a long extinct world. Embark on the quest to find out if you have what it takes to be a Palaeontologist extraordinaire! For more details, visit HERE.

          Floating Utopias
          Now until 29 Sep 2019
          10am - 7pm
          ArtScience Museum
          From $15 per Adult & $11 per Child for Singapore residents


          Floating Utopias is a playful and poetic exhibition that explores the social history of inflatable objects, showing how, over the decades, they have been used in art, architecture and activism. Floating Utopias reveals the impact inflatables continue to have on our collective imagination. The exhibition juxtaposes historical and contemporary works, featuring over 40 artworks by international and local artists, as well as hands-on workshops and interventions in urban space.

          Inflatables invite us to be playful and to reclaim public space; they help to forge communities and promote participation. Their disruptive, ephemeral presence challenges power structures, by reminding us that after all, everything is temporary. For more information, visit HERE.

          The Quest for the River Gem
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          River Safari
          Admission charges apply


          tokidoki returns to River Safari this September & October, with River Safari’s resident animals, the capybara, Indian gharial, manatee, giant panda, giant river otter, red panda and giant freshwater stingray being recreated in the distinct tokidoki style! Pose with life-sized 3D sculptures of these exclusive characters along with their Mermicorno counterparts and join them in the River Gem Trail to be rewarded with a limited-edition tokidoki x River Safari pin upon completion. For more details, visit HERE.

          Movies Galore!


          Dora And The Lost City Of Gold - Now showing
          The Angry Birds Movie 2 - Now showing
          Playmobil: The Movie - Now showing
          Ne Zha 哪吒之魔童降世 - Opens 5 Sep 2019
          Weathering With You - Opens 12 Sep 2019

          Children’s Biennale 2019: Embracing Wonder
          Now until 29 Dec 2019
          Sat–Thu: 10am–7pm | Fri: 10am–9pm
          National Gallery Singapore
          Free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs). Ticket prices start at $20 for others


          Back for the second edition, the Children’s Biennale has opened at the National Gallery Singapore from now and will run all the way until 29 December 2019. This year’s exhibition is themed ‘Embracing Wonder’ and invites kids all all ages to experience a new dimension of creativity and open themselves up to wondrous surprises. Through 11 imaginative artwork installations, kids can embrace a fantastic, magical world by composing their own tunes, braiding giant tresses, wandering beneath massive lanterns, popping into a dome, and more. And the best part? It is all FREE for for Singaporeans and PRs! Read more about our experience HERE.

          From Singapore to Singaporean: The Bicentennial Experience
          Now until 31 Dec 2019
          Time Traveller: Monday: 0830 – 1730 | Tuesday – Sunday: 0830 – 2200
          Pathfinder: Monday – Sunday: 0830 – 2230
          Echoes: Tuesday – Sunday: 1900 – 2230
          Fort Canning Centre (5 Cox Terrace, Singapore 179620)
          FREE


          As the centrepiece event of the Singapore Bicentennial, this multimedia sensory experience brings you back in time to witness key moments in Singapore’s transformation from as far back as 1299. It comprises of two parts - Time Traveller and Pathfinder. The first is an indoor cinematic, immersive journey which requires pre-booking of time slots while the latter is an outdoor exploratory trail featuring eight interactive pavilions and installations with no pre-registration required. Read more about my experience HERE.

          I-Opener by Playeum
          Now until 26 Apr 2020
          Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm (Closed on Mondays)
          Playeum
          $22 per child (1-12) | Accompanying adult: Free | Additional accompanying adult: $10


          I-Opener features the aesthetic and sensory play-worlds co-created by individuals with various disabilities, and also without. It invites kids aged 1 to 12 to explore their senses through play and the arts.


          As we all know, the senses - sight, touch and hearing all play an important role in a child’s discovery of the world as well as their social-emotional development. But more than that, this exhibition DIFFERS from Playeum's previous exhibitions in that instead of just introducing the art of play to kids, it allows kids to step into the world of those with special needs and experience the way how they interact, play and sense the world around them. Read my review HERE.

          200: A Natural History
          4 Jun 2019 - Jun 2020
          Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum
          Admission charges apply


          As part of Singapore’s Bicentennial, LKCNHM reflects upon 200 significant natural history events in the island’s past. These interweaving, and sometimes quirky, threads of animals, plants, events, places and people have played an important role in shaping the country’s natural heritage. For more information, visit HERE.



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          This year's Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋节) falls on 13 September 2019, which is a Friday. What this means that the Mid-Autumn festivities will be in full swing this 7 & 8 September weekend! Good thing is, the light-ups will continue to next weekend (14 & 15 Sep) as well, including plenty of lantern walks to choose from.


          Since the Mid-Autumn Festival is all about spending time with the family, parading lanterns and of course, gorging on mooncakes, what better way to spend the Mid-Autumn Festival than take your pick from the list of activities below and bring the kiddos out to soak in the festivities! And yes, all of them of FREE!

          Depending on your preference, there are EIGHT to choose from:


          #1 If you wish to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival with humongous colourful lantern displays, including a spectacular light and sound show:


          Mid-Autumn Festival 2019 @ Gardens by the Bay
          Now until 15 Sep 2019; 7pm - 11pm
          Gardens by the Bay
          FREE


          Main Lantern Displays
          Date: 30 Aug - 15 Sep
          Time: 7.00pm - 11.00pm
          Venue: Various locations

          Enjoy spectacular lantern sets depicting stories of rich tradition and heritage. Don’t miss the tallest and widest ever display of floating lanterns stretching over 120m, and take a stroll within the very first giant revolving lantern!

          AIRMESH
          Date: 30 Aug - 1 Nov
          Venue: Opposite Bayfront Plaza

          The lantern-inspired pavilion, AIRMESH, functions as a belvedere which invites visitors into an immersive experience for framed views of the Gardens with its strategic location along the scenic Dragonfly Lake. The 30 sqm cantilevered state-of-the-art 3D-printed steel structure offers unprecedented perspectives through the day with its play on colours, shades and reflections.

          Colonnade of Lights
          Daye: 30 Aug - 15 Sep
          Time: 7.00pm - 11.00pm
          Venue: Colonnade

          Stroll by the Colonnade of Lights and enjoy these displays of lanterns painted by people from various walks of life. Catch a glimpse of whimsical imagination decorated by many creative hands.

          Illuminations of Joy
          Date: 30 Aug - 15 Sep
          Time: 7.00pm - 11.00pm
          Venue: Supertree Grove

          Illuminations of Joy invites you to journey through a series of creative expressions mapped on lanterns hand painted by Seniors.


          Mass Lantern Walk
          Date: 14 Sep
          Lantern Collection: 7.15pm
          Start of Mass Lantern Walk: 7.30pm
          Meeting point: SG50 Lattice

          Join in for a stroll through the Gardens amidst beautiful lantern sets, led by a magnificent LED Dragon! Free LED fabric lanterns will be provided for participants who take part in the walk.

          GARDEN RHAPSODY: A JOURNEY THROUGH ASIA
          Date: 30 Aug - 15 Sep
          Time: 7.45pm & 8.45pm
          Venue: Supertree Grove

          Journey through Asia and immerse yourself in the rich and diverse soundscape, as the Supertrees light up your imagination of this magnificent part of the world! Look out for local artists Alemay Fernandez, Dawn Ho, Leandra Lane and Lou Peixin’s rendition of 《夜来香》,《甜蜜蜜》,’Bengawan Solo’, ‘Dayung Sampan’, ‘Sukiyaki’, and ‘Singapura, Oh Singapura’!

          For a detailed listing of all activities and performances, visit HERE.


          #2 If you are looking to spend the Mid-Autumn Festival at a new venue this year:


          Mid-Autumn Festival @ Jurong Lake Gardens
          6 - 15 Sep 2019; 6pm - 11pm
          Jurong Lake Gardens
          FREE


          Celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival at Jurong Lake Gardens and go on a journey to the West with characters from popular Chinese folklore and watch the garden transform into a mythical world surrounded by a myriad of plants and animals at night. Partake in the festivities as a family and plan your very own lantern walk in the gardens. Enjoy performances which will happen daily and refuel yourself at the night market with a variety of food and drinks at the Wave Plaza. Admission is free! For a detailed listing of all activities and shows, visit HERE.


          #3 If you wish to soak in the traditional Mid-Autumn Festival atmosphere:


          Mid-Autumn @ Chinatown 2019
          Now until 28 Sep 2019
          Street Light-up: 7pm – 12mn (Sun – Thur) | 7pm – 2am (Fri & Sat)
          Chinatown
          FREE


          The celebrations will showcase an exciting, colourful and vibrant month-long programmes from 31 August to 28 September 2019. During this period, Chinatown will be soaked in festivities and beautifully adorned with colourful lanterns and dazzling decorations. Come and join us to appreciate and experience the allure and significance of this Chinese traditional festival.

          Mass Lantern Walk
          8 Sep 2019 | 7pm - 10pm | Starting point – Kreta Ayer Square; Ending point – Along New Bridge Road | FREE
          Enjoy a fun night out with your family and friends with your creative lanterns as you join in the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival 2019 Mass Lantern Walk that is open to the general public. Immerse yourself in the festive spirit as you soak in the leisurely-paced lantern parade procession under the full moon and the dazzling displays around Chinatown. Don’t miss the impressive acts of the dragon dance troupes, energetic cheerleaders and the percussion band along the way! The lantern walk will conclude with stage performances, pyrotechnics and fireworks display in the heart of Chinatown.

          #4 If you want to celebrate Mid-Autumn in the cutest and most instagrammable way possible:


          Sweet Reunion with Sanrio Characters
          Now until 15 Sep 2019
          Jurong Point


          Jurong Point celebrates the sweet reunion of the festival by bringing Sanrio characters to the mall! Look forward to a myriad of photo-worthy displays of all things Sanrio, including Hello Kitty, Cinnamoroll, gudetama, Kerokerokeroppi and Pompompurin! From life-sized inflatables to lantern installations, cultural appreciation activities and meet & greet with Hello Kitty, there is much to experience!

          Photo credit: Jurong Point

          Vivocity's Curious Adventures in Wonderland
          Now until 22 Sep 2019; 7pm - 10pm
          Vivocity, Sky Park, Level 3
          FREE


          Embark on a Curious Adventure in Wonderland this Mid-Autumn at VivoCity and step into a world of wonder, created by a mesmerising display of lanterns at the Sky Park! Journey down the rabbit hole for a glimpse into an illuminated world of curious adventures this Mid-Autumn! Immerse yourself in 5 larger-than-life whimsical zones made of lanterns.


          Lantern Walk with Tayo the Little Bus
          13 Sep 2019; 7.30pm
          Downtown East



          #5 If you want the kids to learn more about the history and cultural significance of Mid-Autumn Festival all under one roof:


          Wan Qing Mid-Autumn Festival 2019
          7 & 8 Sep 2019
          10am - 9pm
          Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall
          FREE Admission

          Photo Credit: William Ong
          An array of engaging activities will be organised during the weekend festival on 7 and 8 September, such as heritage trails, storytelling of Chinese fables & tales, live music performances, and art & craft activities. The festival highlight on 7 September will include the penning of Mid-Autumn well-wishes on larger-than-life Sky Lantern helium balloons and a subsequent release of the lanterns into the night sky. For more details on activities, visit HERE.

          #6 If you are looking to expose the little ones to Chinese traditional art forms:


          Mid-Autumn Yeah!
          13 & 14 Sep 2019
          Fri: 7pm - 10pm | Sat: 1pm - 10pm
          Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre
          FREE Admission (Certain activities ticketed)


          Beyond the popular folklore of Chang’e and Hou Yi, Mid-Autumn Festival celebrates the bountiful harvest to come. Join in the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre’s Mid-Autumn Yeah! celebration and reap your own harvest of knowledge by discovering traditions anew and immersing in a feast for the senses with friends and family! Plan a heist to break into the Moon Vault in search of the secret recipe for the Divine Mooncake in an escape-room activity, learn about the secrets of the night sky through a series of planetarium shows; revel in songs that wax lyrical about the moon; or concoct your very own cup of bubble tea while learning about tea traditions. Whether you are a culture buff, someone who wants to learn more about our heritage, or a visitor who simply wants to have an enjoyable time with loved ones, Mid-Autumn Yeah! promises something exciting in store for everyone. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          Moonfest 2019
          13 - 15 Sep 2019; Various Timings
          Esplanade
          FREE & Ticketed


          Moonfest – A Mid-Autumn Celebration is an annual traditional Chinese arts festival held in celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival. Now in its 15th edition, Moonfest presents the opportunity for families and friends, young and old to be exposed to and rediscover the intrinsic beauty of traditional Chinese arts through an exciting line-up of free programmes and ticketed workshops.

          This year’s highlights include:

          - Classic Xiqu excerpts performed by “Little Plum Blossom” artists, which is the highest accolade given to young Xiqu performers below the age of 14 in China.
          - Taishan Shadow Puppetry performances where the skillful puppeteer from China demonstrates the controlling of shadow puppets, singing and playing percussion instruments all at the same time.
          - Nostalgic street opera performances of classic excerpts by Sin Yong Hua Heng Teochew Opera Troupe under a moonlit night.
          - A unique performance that blends Chinese crosstalk— a witty, humorous and light-hearted performing art—and a cappella music by Soo Wee Seng, Ho Jia Wen & The Apex Project.
          - A fun-filled performance by Singapore’s top radio group Yu Jian Huang Chong—comprising Chen Biyu, Marcus Chin, Mark Lee and Dennis Chew—featuring folk, dialect and xinyao music, and memorable movie theme songs.
          - Ever-popular Lantern Walkabout on 14 Sep where limited free lanterns will be given out.

          There will also be a series of ticketed Parent-Child Workshops where families can bond and learn more about Xiqu, shadow puppetry and Shaolin martial arts, or make their own lanterns. Those who are musically inclined can also try their hand at playing a hulusi (a folk wind instrument from China that is shaped like a gourd) at the Let’s Learn to Play the Hulusi! ticketed workshop conducted by Jonathan Tan from Dicapella Dizi Ensemble.

          For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          #7  If you wish to join in a mass Mid-Autumn Festival get-together:


          Moonstruck At Singapore Sports Hub
          Now until 19 Sep 2019
          Various Timings
          Singapore Sports Hub
          FREE


          Join in the fun to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival with hands-on activities, folklore, lantern-making contest and more! Registration for most activities are FREE. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          Mid Autumn Festival @ Robertson Quay
          14 Sep 2019: 3pm - 10pm
          15 Sep 2019: 2pm - 6pm
          Robertson Walk
          FREE (except for Lantern Walkabout & Boat ride)


          Let’s reminisce about the good old days with “Mid-Autumn Festival @ Robertson Quay”. Expect old-school lantern walkabout along the river juxtaposed with new-school creation of a human claw machine! Not forgetting our favourite LED Kite performance to end off the night. Complete with a boat ride experience along Singapore River, this mid-autumn festival will be a truly unique experience for all.

          Purchase a ticket ($25 or $80 for 4) to join in for the Lantern walkabout and Boat ride happening only on 14th Sep (6pm-8pm) HERE.

          #8  If you wish to just spend some family time together in the heartlands:


          Ci Yuan Night 2019
          7 Sep 2019; 6pm - 9.30pm
          Ci Yuan Community Club
          $2 per ticket


          Gambas Mid-Autumn Celebration
          7 Sep 2019; 6.30pm
          Blk 414 Yishun Ring Road courtyard
          FREE


          Geylang Serai Family Carnival
          6 - 15 Sep 2019; 12pm - 10pm
          1 Engku Aman turn (Open Field) next to Wisma Geylang Serai
          FREE Admission


          Have a super September school holiday at the Geylang Serai Family Carnival! Head down to WGS from 6-15 Sep, 12 noon till 10pm for a whale of time with your whole family and enjoy games, rides, educational activities and performances galore!



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          Sponsored Post

          With the rate that a child is growing, it somehow feels like there is a need to replace the kids' furniture at home every month! From beds to chairs to study tables for kids, it is as if kids outgrow their furniture at an alarming rate... which probably explains why some parents opt to buy adult-sized furniture so that their kids can grow into it.

          Erm, bad idea. Primarily because kids will then have to strain their bodies to accommodate the furniture and this could lead to potential ailments like musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) that can affect muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves and joints.

          So instead of having to constantly change the furniture as the kids grow older (and bigger), why not invest in a set of furniture that grows with your child? A set of convertible furniture that take care of your offspring from child to tween to teen.

          And this is where ErgoBloom comes to the rescue.


          ErgoEdge is an ergonomic furniture company based in Singapore and they have recently launched the ErgoBloom series - a line of ergonomic furniture made for kids. Specifically, the BloomDesk and BloomChair which adjust to the kids as they are growing up, to ensure they always have perfect posture when sitting at their desks.


          But the thing about kids when it comes to sitting in front of a desk is that... it is COMPLICATED. That is because kids being kids, they sit in thousands of different positions: upright, slouched, twisted, tilted, straddling their seats. They stretch out their legs, sit on them, cross them, bounce on them. And of course, they love to balance on the front of their chair or precariously teeter on the back, tempting gravity – and common sense. Sigh.

          And even as they "sit still", their bodies are still constantly moving. They shift their weight around on the chair, they rest their arms (and body weight) on the table, they fidget and sometimes, they fall asleep. 😂

          So how does the ErgoBloom series (sold by ErgoEdge) fix these problems?



          ErgoBloom is designed to grow up with your kids

          A good set of ergonomic furniture should ensure that the chair enables your child to sit with their feet flat on the ground and their knees forming an angle of at least 90 degrees. The same goes for the desk - the child should be able to rest their elbows comfortably on the desk with an angle of at least 90 degrees. Which is why having a set of furniture that grows with your child is so important.


          The BloomDesk and BloomChair are precisely that - from adjusting the desk's height and angle to adjusting the chairs' depth and height according to the height of your child - this always ensures that the furniture is a perfect fit with your child.


          One incredibly nifty feature that I love about the BloomChair is the adjustable height on it is shown in correspondence to the height of the child. You can't make it simpler than that!


          ErgoBloom prevents slouching, while promoting the correct posture 

          Bad posture in kids, who are developing quickly, can have long-lasting effect. Misaligned spine, chronic pain, and musculoskeletal problems are but some of the common problems. And these are no small laughing matter.


          ErgoBloom’s adjustability and various ergonomic features ensure kids develop proper postural habit. Besides being able to adjust the height of the BloomDesk easily, you are able to tilt the desk top at an angle between 0° to 25° which helps to eliminate slouching and neck strain, allowing kids to study at a straight posture.


          To encourage blood circulation, get a chair that allows your child to switch between postures for different tasks. This means a more flexible backrest and no armrests. Your child should be able to move back, forth, and sideways as well. The BlomChair comes with a Flexible Split Backrest – which reduces pressure to the back by 75%. It does so by reacting to any shifts in posture to quickly fill the gap, ensuring the back stays always supported.


          And how's this for a cool safety feature - the BloomChair has self-braking castors that automatically locks when seated to prevent accidental rolling over the kid's toes!


          ErgoBloom is made to last

          The thing about growing kids is the furniture that they are going to be using has to be sturdy and strong enough to withstand the inevitable ‘abuse’ your child is going to put it through. 😅 The BloomDesk and BloomChair are made of quality materials, and are designed to withstand long-term usage.


          In addition, the surface of the BloomDesk is non-reflective which prevents light and sun rays from reflecting onto your child’s eyes. This may be seemingly minor but most kids usually do their homework or revision at night under the room's light or a desk light so the prolonged reflection of the light rays into the eyes can increase the risk of astigmatism, myopia and other eye conditions.


          More importantly though, what did the monkies think of the BloomDesk and BloomChair?

          Well, the TL;DR version: They LOVE them!


          At the end of the day, a desk and a chair can be extremely ergonomic but if a child doesn't feel comfortable using them (especially since they have to use the furniture for study!), then it defeats the purpose.

          So not only did Ash and Ayd love using the BloomDesk and BloomChair, they also love them for the little features that came along with the furniture.

          Like having a compartmentalised drawer for their stationery.


          Oh, and this has to be Ash's fave. Having a pull-out book stand for his textbooks so that he can easily refer to them while doing his homework!



          In truth, the standard study desk is simply not designed to accommodate a growing child. And having a set of study furniture that grows with your child from ErgoBloom not only ensures the healthy development of your kid’s bone structure, it also lowers the risk of future health problems.


          Interested to find out more, or to view the furniture for yourself?

          Visit ErgoEdge’s websiteor check out their showroom at 110 Lorong 23 Geylang, #07-09, Victory Centre, Singapore 388410 (opposite Alijunied MRT).

          *USE this promo code: CHEEKIE58 to enjoy $58 off all ErgoBloom products! Code is valid until 18 October 2019.



          [GIVEAWAY]

          To celebrate the launch of “ErgoBloom”, ErgoEdge is giving out a ErgoBloom bundle (worth $830) each to THREE lucky winners!

          To participate, all you have to do is the following:

          1. LIKE ErgoEdge's Facebook page.
          2. SHARE this blog post on your FB 
          3. Head over to the ErgoEdge’s Main Giveaway post HERE and COMMENT ONE sentence on why you like ErgoBloom and tag a fellow mummy/daddy you know!

          *Giveaway ends 29 September 2019, 2359 hrs.
          Winners will be announced by ErgoEdge on its main FB post. GOOD LUCK!

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          Media Invite

          The thing about staycations with kids is, it is so easy to just pack and go. No hitting the road, or skies. No passports. No fuss. Just a weekend away from the usual routines... especially if it involves a hotel that is located smack in the middle of the city.

          Yes, relaxation has never been so accessible.


          Located right smack in the middle of Orchard Road and directly above Abercrombie & Fitch, the Grand Park Orchard hotel is the most iconic Grand Park hotel in Singapore. Throw in the close proximity it has with shopping malls like Paragon, Ngee Ann City and H&M's flagship store, and I think you have a staycation winner!


          Room-wise, we were put up in two connecting Premier rooms that each came with a king-sized bed.


          The size of the rooms are pretty large; big enough to accommodate an extra single bed should you require it - like my family.



          I like how the design of the rooms are comtemporary yet simple in its own unique way. A nice touch is the inclusion of the see-through window between the bathroom and hotel room, which I think will delight the younger kids.


          For my monkies though, the availability of free Wi-Fi in the room always brings smlies to their faces! 🤣


          The entire Grand Park Orchard hotel screams chic and the lobby area is probably where this is most evident.




          Of course, there are lots of spaces for families to chill within the hotel too - with the most stunning (read: Instagrammable) area being pool side.



          I love how the hotel has added that touch of green foliage and nature to the area, which makes me feel that I am chilling in an oasis in the midst of the city.


          Or posing. LOL.


          Well, all that posing certainly made the monkies extremely hungry... which was a good thing, since we had a dim sum buffet lunch at Mitzo on the agenda!


          Mitzo is a Chinese restaurant that serves Cantonese cuisine with a modern twist although I have to admit, I have never heard of or dined at Mitzo before. But judging from the display of the numerous food accolades it has amassed at its entrance, I think it was safe to say we would be totally blown away by the dining experience.


          And yes, I was absolutely right.


          Let me just say this - for a splendid weekend out on Orchard Road in Singapore, you probably cannot find a much better all-you-can-eat dim sum brunch buffet than at Mitzo.


          Priced at $68++ per adult (6 to 12 year-olds enjoy 50% off while kids under 6 dine free), the food menu is EXTENSIVE, with close to 60 dishes to choose from. Believe me, we have tried our very best to try to order everything... but even with 2 growing teens in the family, we still failed spectacularly.

          And the main reason? Because we ordered the same dishes for some of the dim sum choices. 😁

          And that's because they were just TOO GOOD! Like this Mitzo Special Barbecued Pork (or char siew).


          OMG, this is truly the BEST char siew we have ever tasted! The meat had just the right amount of fat, and it was so tender with a crunchy caramelized glaze on the outside. Just don't ask how many servings of the char siew we had because I honestly cannot remember. LOL.

          You can view the entire buffet menu HERE but the standout items that we tried include the Stir Fried Black Pepper Beef Cubes, Wuxi-Style Sweet & Sour Pork, Crispy Beancurd Roll, Wild Mushroom Crystal Dumpling, Escargot Cheese Puff, Royal Shrimp Dumpling and Stir Fried Scallops with egg white and fresh milk.


          On top of that, each  diner is also entitled to a complimentary one serving of a bamboo clam, live lobster, and abalone dish.



          But whatever you do - or eat - please please please save some space for the ultra-luscious Hokkaido milk cheese tart.


          They are bite-sized and oh-so-good. You probably don't need me to describe how they taste because all you need to know is the restaurant only bakes them a few times during the duration of the brunch so my suggestion is to place an order for them once you take your seat. They really get snapped up very fast!!!

          But all the fantastic food spread might count for nothing if one cannot sit down peacefully through the meal. Parents, you know what I am talking about. 😆 Fret not though, because there is a playroom for kids where they can entertain themselves by watching cartoons, playing toys, colouring and drawing!


          With the kiddos being kept busy, perhaps parents can indulge in some cocktails too!


          Suffice to say, all of us were bursting at the seams by the time we were done with the brunch buffet.


          Great to head back to our comfy room for a nap, I say.


          We thoroughly enjoyed our short staycation break at Grand Park Orchard. It is pleasant, comfortable and its superb Orchard location means the wifey get to do her shopping while the rest of us recharge in the room. Now that's a win-win!


          Grand Park Orchard is currently having a number of staycation promotions so head HERE if you are thinking of a staycation with the family soon!


          Grand Park Orchard
          270 Orchard Road, Singapore 238857
          WEBSITE


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          Batam is famed for being home to plenty of massage centres and spas and chances are if you are heading there for a relaxing getaway, you will be hard-pressed to pick one because there are just so many options.

          And bringing the kids along, you say? Then the task of finding a spa centre which is kid-friendly gets a little more difficult. Well, that is until we found out about Spa Central... which has THIS on its premises.


          Wait what, an entire indoor playground dedicated to kids while parents enjoy a worry-free spa session? YES. In fact, it has more entertainment for kids but I promise I will get to that in a bit.

          First, a little history behind Spa Central. Founded in 2009 by a Singaporean couple, Spa Central is  a premium boutique spa with massages and treatments priced at affordable prices - a 60min massage session costs S$20! It currently has two outlets: one in Sukajadi (Batam Centre) and the other in Nagoya Hill.


          The outlet at Batam Centre is Spa Central's first outlet and is great for couples who are looking for a massage, foot reflexology, facial, hair care or even a good nail care session.


          But if you are bringing along the kids, I suggest heading to its Nagoya outlet which is loacted beside Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall.


          The good thing about booking a spa package with Spa Central is it offers complimentary pick-up from Batam Center Ferry Terminal if you book at least a 2-hour treatment for 2 persons. So in less than 20 minutes after we disembarked from the ferry, we found ourselves within the soothing environment of Spa Central Nagoya.



          The thing about having a Singaporean as the owner is, you can be sure that every aspect within the spa - from the scent to the ambience to the service - is being taken care of, right to the smallest detail.


          The monkies had the 60-min AROMATHERAPY MASSAGE (S$24) which involved a traditional massage complemented with a blend of essential oils while my mother-in-law went for the 2-hour CENTRAL FAVORITE spa package (S$48) which combines two of Spa Central's most popular treatments: a 30 minute Body Scrub and 90 minute Aromatherapy Massage.

          How was the session for the kids? I was told that they fell asleep during the massage so I'm guessing all was fantastic! 😁


          As for the wifey and I, we had the CENTRAL COUPLE spa package (S$120), a 2.5-hour session which includes a 30 minute Body Scrub, 60 minute Aromatherapy Massage, and 30 minute Orange Milk Bath. After all of that, I had the choice of ending the session with either Ear Candling or Foot Reflexology (30 mins) while the wifey could pick from either a Hair Wash & Blow Dry or Ratus (30 mins).


          Can I just say I love the couple room that the wifey and I were given? The jacuzzi bath within the room definitely clinched it for us, coupled with how professionally trained the massage and spa therapists are.

          And through all of these, what did the monkies get up to when their 60-min session was up?

          THIS.


          KidZoopia is and indoor playground located on the fourth floor of Spa Central Nagoya and to put it simply, it is a haven for kids!


          Filled with climbing structures, rope ladders, fireman pole and even a slide, let's just say kids will go crazy at this indoor playground!






          And if teens find the play structures a little too childish, there's nothing like NERF guns to up the fun factor.



          But that's not all - there's a reason why KidZoopia has the word 'zoo' in its name and it was also the reason that made the monkies squeal in delight... or astonishment, depending whether you are a fan of giant iguanas. 😂


          Yup, there is a mini petting zoo at the indoor playground as well where kids get to pet a rabbit, cat, hamster, birds or even a huge (but friendly) iguana!





          Kids can also head to the Craft Corner where craft sessions are conducted under the supervision of a staff member.



          When the monkies were there, they tried their hands at making Sea Salt Scrub and painting rocks.



          With so many activities to keep the monkies occupied, no wonder they were so reluctant to leave even after the wifey and I were done with our spa session.

          I should have soaked in my jacuzzi for a little while longer then. Drats.


          When it comes to Family Spa, I think there isn't a better spa operator in Batam than Spa Central. Now, parents can drop off their kids at the spa's KidZoopia play area when they go for their massages - no more worrying about the kids when all you want is some relaxing me-time to yourself! 😄


          As for accommodation, we were put up at the extremely scenic Harris Resort Barelang.


          Only a short 50min ferry ride away from Singapore, the rooms are spacious and come with an extra sofa bed... as Ash will attest to.



          But I think its strongest selling point for families is the 3 huge gorgeous pools and 1 waterplay area.




          Oh, and there's a small beach too. Great for that impromptu getaway!


          If you are staying there, I highly recommend heading to the Barelang Seafood restaurant beside the resort for a meal too. Just tell the resort's conceirge and they will drop you off at the restaurant via a buggy for free.


          The unique thing about the restaurant is it is a part-kelong so you can pick your seafood freshly from the waters and have it caught right before your eyes!


          What a sumptuous seafood lunch we had!


          Looking for more activities in Batam? How about going dirt racing with the kids on a go-kart???


          Batam Dirt Karting offers dirt racing thrills we had never experienced before - and it was fun to the max! The dirt from the track racing is so REAL that we had to cover almost every part of our body before drfiting our way around the track. Prices start from S$15 per pax.


          We last visited Batam when Ash was still a toddler and my, so much has changed since then. More than just a destination for that weekend getaway, parents can now head for a much-needed recharge at Spa Central while the kids are kept occupied at its KidZoopia indoor playground.

          If that isn't the best of both worlds, I don't know what is.


          Thanks Spa Central, for having us. We will most certainly be back really soon! 😀


          Useful Information

          SPA CENTRAL NAGOYA
          ADDRESS: Ruko Nagoya Hill, Blok R4 No. D6-7, Kepulauan Riau 29444, Batam Indonesia
          PHONE/WHATSAPP: +62-811-778-5508
          EMAIL: nagoya@spacentralbatam.com
          WEBSITE
          Spa Packages Pricing
          KidZoopia Pricing



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          Exams may be lurking round the corner  - unless your child is a PSLE student (congrats!) - but I reckon kids can afford to chill a little on CHILDREN'S DAY. After all, it's the day where kids aged 12 and below get their day of fun and trust me, there comes a time when your kids will find the activities below too childish.


          So make most of the chance to bring them out this 4th to 6th October 2019 weekend and if you are fretting over where to bring them, I have done the homework for you... more than 35 options - with more than half being FREE! - to take your pick from!


          Octoburst! 2019
          4 - 6 Oct 2019
          Various programmes and timings
          Esplanade
          FREE & Ticketed events


          It's all about fun, friendship and imagination at Esplanade’s 17th edition of Octoburst! from 4 – 6 Oct 2019. There’s lots to look forward to this year with its line-up of interactive performances from around the world and workshops that encourages play and family fun.

          On Children’s Day on 4 Oct, everyone is invited to join in the PIParade as everyone troops down the waterfront led by its lovable children’s mascot PIP and the boys and girls from Kinderland Marching Band and Maha Bodhi School Symphonic Band.

          There are 4 ticketed shows and 35 (!!!) FREE programmes at Octoburst! 2019 so do check them out in detail HERE!

          Children’s Day Specials @ ArtScience Museum
          4 Oct 2019; Various Timings
          ArtScience Museum
          Admission charges apply

          Calling all children! Celebrate on how we achieve balance between art, science, technology and creativity here at ArtScience Museum! Participate in fringe activities around our permanent exhibition, Future World: Where Art Meets Science. Colour in your own Koinobori bag and learn a song as you go, and explore how simple coding can be!


          Play with Coding
          Friday 4 Oct | 11am - 12pm
          Venue: Rainbow Room, Basement 2
          Tinker with the basics of coding in this exclusive programme, only available at ArtScience Museum! Check out how coding is used in our daily lives, try your hand at some basic concepts and get active testing your “codes” with your friends.
          *$5 per participant, up to 20 participants on a first-come, first-served basis. Click here to book the workshops.

          Colours of Koinobori
          Friday 4 Oct | 2pm - 4pm
          Venue: Rainbow Room, Basement 2
          Koinobori are carp-shaped windsocks traditionally used in Japan to celebrate Children’s Day. Colour in your very own Koinobori and join in story-telling and sing-along session to find out more about this culturally significant fish in Japan!
          *This drop-in session is complimentary to all ArtScience Museum visitors. Spaces subject to availability.

          Future World Spotlight Gallery Talks
          Friday 4 Oct | 3pm - 4pm
          Venue: Various locations in Future World: Where Art Meets Science galleries, Basement 2
          Boundaries between art and technology are becoming increasingly blurred as new grounds are broken in digital artistic expression. Discover the ideas and themes in our permanent exhibition through this series of lively spotlight talks. Join us for interactive play happening at various exhibition zones.
          *Complimentary to ticket-holders of Future World: Where Art Meets Science.

          Make Your Own Tote Bag
          Friday 4 Oct | 4.30pm - 5.30pm
          Venue: The Sun, Basement 1
          Experience silkscreen printing – from the creative use of positive and negative space, to preparing a screen, then printing on fabric with special inks. Finally, design your own custom-made tote bag by choosing your favourite print combination and colourway!
          *$5 per participant, up to 20 participants on a first-come, first-served basis. Click here to book the workshops.

          Monster Mashup Halloween
          4 Oct 2019; 3pm - 6pm
          Wheeler's Estate (2 Park Lane, Seletar Aerospace Park)
          FREE (Pre-registration required)


          The Finder Kids is throwing a kooky Halloween carnival, and you are invited!  Pre-register online for an afternoon filled with awesome activities such as the Monster Hunt, photo-taking, terrifyingly delicious treats, a costume contest and much more! Suitable for kids aged 2 to 12. Spaces are limited! Click here to pre-register.

          Walk for Dyslexia
          4 Oct 2019; 6pm - 8pm
          Gardens by the Bay, Bayfront Pavilion (Flag off)
          $10


          Wear red and  join us for a walk around the Gardens in support of World Dyslexia Awareness Week. The flag off will be held at Bayfront Pavilion and the walk ends at Supertree Grove Lawn where participants get to enjoy a nice evening watching our Garden Rhapsody Light & Sound Show! Purchase tickets HERE.

          Make Your Mark!
          4 & 5 Oct 2019; 10am - 5pm
          PLAYEUM
          $15 per pax, or $48 for 4


          Taking place on Children's Day weekend, Playeum invites creators of all ages to come celebrate the role of mark-making and drawing in their lives! Make Your Mark brings together all who enjoy doodles, sketches and drawings, and celebrates the role it plays in our lives. On top of our current hands-on exhibition, there'll be fun art activities, workshops, roving artists and visual exhibits!

          Shake and Waddle
          4 Oct 2019: 6pm - 8pm
          5 Oct 2019: 4pm - 6pm
          Oasis Waterpark at Nee Soon East
          FREE (Registration required)


          A first-of-its-kind dance game! “Shake & Waddle”, is a twist to the traditional favourite, “Snake & Ladders”. You ‘Got to Move’ and complete dance challenges with your team to make it to the top of the board! Suitable for ages 5 and beyond. (no dance experience needed!)

          The aim is to try to be the first team to reach the no.“100” spot. Players will be grouped into 4 teams. The leader of each team will roll the dice and on every square is a dance challenge/mission attached to it. To win each challenge, all team members must participate in this dance activity. If successful, the team gets to roll the dice again to advance on the board. The dance challenges will get more difficult as the players advance on the board. REGISTER HERE.

          Children's Fiesta @ OTH 2019
          4 - 6 Oct 2019
          Our Tampines Hub
          FREE

          Our Tampines Hub is throwing a 3-Day fiesta from 4 to 6 Oct for all kids above 3 years old with non-stop play at Festive Walk East. Highlights for the event include a 20-meter Zipline, Pinata Games, Craft Workshops and free treats from Totti Candy Factory. Admission is free!

          Children's Day Weekend at The Artground
          4 - 6 Oct 2019; Various Timings
          FREE & Ticketed
          The Artground, Goodman Arts Centre


          It’s the Children’s Day weekend at The Artground and it has a 3 days of programmes lined up, along with the launch of a brand new installation!

          From 4th October 2019 till 22nd March 2020, enjoy The Curious Sky by Ng Fongyee, a multi-sensory arts play space inspired by elements of the weather. We often talk about the weather, but have we ever truly experienced the full spectrum of what it can bring? Come and join us to sing in the rain, dance with the rainbow, hear the thunder rumble or simply look up for the endless possibilities The Curious Sky brings you. Entry into The Artground itself is free and donations are encouraged. For a detailed listing of all activities, visit HERE.

          AERIAL FEAT OF DANCE ON WALL FEATURING BANDALOOP
          4 - 6 Oct 2019
          7pm, 7:45pm and 8:30pm
          L1, ION2
          FREE


          As part of ION Orchard’s 10th Anniversary and in conjunction with the Autumn Winter 2019 collections, be entertained by Orchard Road’s first performances by BANDALOOP, the pioneers of vertical dance, at ION Orchard’s Level 1 outdoor ION2.

          Children's Day @ Wild Wild Wet
          5 Oct 2019; 2pm - 6pm
          Wild Wild Wet
          $20 for 4pax (min 1 child) for NTUC and eXplorerkid members


          This Children's Day, have a splashing good time at Wild Wild Wet with your family at eXplorerkid's event! Enjoy fun fringe activities, take part in a catwalk contest and get to meet our dear mascots Enzo & Kayla! What's more? Tickets are priced at $20 for 4pax (min 1 child) for NTUC and eXplorerkid members. Purchase your tickets here: http://bit.ly/EKChildrensDay

          Singapore Malaysia Celebrity Cup 2019
          5 Oct 2019; 3pm
          Jalan Besar Stadium
          $20


          Boss Productions Pte Ltd is bringing the football fever back with the celebrity match between Malaysian Artiste Sports Club (MASC) VS Ex Singapore International in the shape of SINGAPORE MALAYSIA CELEBRITY CUP 2019 #SMCC2019.

          MASC will compromise of actors like,Roy Azman and Harris Anuar, comedians Yassin Senario and Mamak Puteh, singers Tomok and Fiq Mentor just to name a few. For the EX Singapore International, household names like Fandi Ahmad,Razali Saad, Malek Awab, Nazri Nasir, Noh Alam Shah,Yazid Yasin and others will again put on the national jersey for this event. This event is catered for all ages as there will be entertainments, lucky draws and fun games throughout the duration of the events. For tickets, visit HERE.

          Sci-Kids
          5 Oct 2019; 2pm - 5pm
          SAFRA Jurong
          Free (SAFRA Member) | $2 (Guest)


          Calling All Little Scientists! Join us for a fun-filled afternoon of scientific experiments and shows that will pull your curious little ones into the fascinating world of science! Register here or visit SAFRA Jurong Customers Service Counter. Registration ends Sat, 5 Oct 2019.

          Beethoven im Garten
          5 Oct 2019; 6pm - 7pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          Singapore’s wunderkind conductor Kahchun Wong returns with principal musicians of the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra to lead the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory Orchestra of his alma mater in this second Beethoven im Garten concert. Bring your picnic mats and let Wong take you on a country walk with Beethoven and experience music and nature on a high note! In addition to the concert, come and enjoy scrumptious bites and shop for plants at the Market Square in the Orchid Plaza as part of your weekend outing from 5 to 6 October 2019.

          Klook Travel Festival 2019
          5 & 6 Oct 2019; 11am- 9pm
          Halls 401 and 402, Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre
          FREE Admission


          Breaking free from this traditional mould, Klook is pleased to launch the Klook Travel Festival, a one-of-a-kind experiential travel fair that brings together and celebrates travel, fun and community under one roof. The Klook Travel Festival will also be the first fair in Singapore to exclusively target a growing segment of Free and Independent travellers (FITs).

          Held on 5 and 6 October 2019 at Suntec City Convention Centre, the event will help travellers build their perfect holiday with eight experiential travel zones, a weekend of talks featuring some of the most intrepid personalities such as Nas Daily and event-exclusive discounts. Attendees also stand a chance to win $50,000 worth of prizes. 

          Supported by travel partners and brands such as Universal Studios Japan, Japan Rail (JR) West, Korean Tourism Organisation (KTO), Scoot, Shopee, GoPro, Agoda and Sephora, the event promises to be a two-day extravaganza for free and independent travellers of all ages. Entry to the Klook Travel Festival is free. Simply download the Klook app and join in the revelry by checking out with the entrance pass here.

          SBG Market Square
          5 & 6 Oct 2019
          F&B Time: 9am to 7pm | Plant and Retail: 9am to 6pm
          Orchid Plaza, Singapore Botanic Gardens
          FREE Admission

          Enjoy scrumptious bites and shop for plants at the Market Square in the Orchid Plaza as part of your weekend outing from 5 to 6 Oct 2019! Stay till the evening for the concerts and revel in the enchanting music!

          Up Close with Sharks: Interactive installation and storytelling sessions at public libraries
          Storytelling sessions: 5 & 12 Oct 2019 |12.30pm - 1pm | Sengkang Public Library, Programme Zone
          Interactive Installation: 1 - 25 Oct 2019 | Marine Parade Public Library & Clementi Public Library
          FREE


          Ready for a hands-on learning experience about sharks? Head to our immersive interactive installations at public libraries and discover fascinating facts about these majestic animals. If you love stories, you can also join the S.E.A. Aquarium team from Resorts World Sentosa as they tell you a meaningful story about what would happen if sharks disappeared!

          Reading @ The Gardens
          6 Oct 2019; 8am - 1pm
          Gardens by the Bay, Bayfront Plaza
          FREE


          In conjunction with MENDAKI's launch of Raikan Ilmu (Celebrating Knowledge) Month, Reading @ The Gardens invites families to go outside, have fun and learn. Happening at Gardens by the Bay, the event will organise a fun-filled morning with Story Telling, Zumba Phonics, Mass Reading and various activity stations to show that learning can happen anywhere and in any form. Plenty of freebies for the whole family!

          Sunday Playdates
          6 Oct 2019; 12pm - 5pm
          Clarke Quay
          FREE


          Nothing to do on the weekend? Head on down to Clarke Quay on the first Sunday of every month for some quality time with your loved ones. Check out the carnival game booths and bouncy houses at the Fountain Square for the whole family. It's free for everyone to play!

          Singapore International A Cappella Festival 2019
          6 Oct 2019; 6pm - 8pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          Celebrate the 12th Singapore International A CAPPELLA FESTIVAL! The Festival will bring the theme of nature in celebration of Singapore Botanic Gardens 160th Anniversary! The mix of local community groups and our international guests, acclaimed A Cappella group Vocaldente from Germany, promise a varied and entertaining program for everybody.

          China, Lit!
          Now until 6 Oct 2019
          Changi Airport T3


          From 6 Sep to 6 Oct 2019, catch a glimpse of modern China at Changi Airport T3 Departure Hall! Illuminate your senses at China, Lit! Exhibition and treat your kids to the larger-than-life Flavours of China Indoor Playground. What’s more, redeem a complimentary hotpot-inspired kids activity pack at participating F&B outlets! 


          Simply spend a minimum of $50 (or $80 for supermarket purchases) in a single receipt to qualify for 2 play passes to Flavours of China playground. Pay by Mastercard® to qualify for an additional pass! For more details, visit HERE.

          Bouncy Paradise
          Now until 6 Oct 2019
          1pm to 9pm (Friday) | 10am to 9pm (Saturday/Sunday) | 10am to 9pm (Children’s Day 4th Oct)
          200 Pandan Gardens (PeopleUp Enrichment Hub)
          $10 for unlimited play


          Occupying an air-conditioned space of 20,000sqft, the playground features 20 huge bouncy castles and 1 mega ball pit for visitors. This is Singapore's largest indoor bouncy castle playground! For more details, visit HERE.

          Kid's FunLand @ Parkway Parade
          Now until 6 Oct 2019; 11am - 9pm
          Parkway Parade
          FREE


          Mark a date with Kid's Funland @Parkway Parade from 30th September to 5th October 2019. Plenty of fun-filled activities for kids in 3 categories: Adventure, Talent & Movement Zone. Absolutely FREE ! Register (either pre-event or during event period), get a gamecard & collect 3 stamps at the activities station and return for a sure-win lucky spin to win fabulous gifts.

          Catalysts
          Now until 10 Oct 2019
          Tues - Fri: 10am, 11am, 3pm | Sat & Sun: 10am, 11am, 3pm, 4pm
          KidsSTOP™, Science Centre Singapore
          $25


          Join in for a brand-new theatre experience by Singapore Repertory Theatre, where audiences roam KidsSTOP™ at Science Centre Singapore, to be immersed in unforgettable STEM learning experience.

          Madame Curie, the KidsSTOP™ Cat, has been 'catnapped' by the grouchy inventor Dr FeelBad, whose mission is to make everyone feel bad, always. Recruited by the familiar KidsSTOP™ mascots, Jo and Win, join the adventure, spurred on by Madame Curie’s advice to "Always question. Always wonder”. Venturing by rocket, train and even dinosaur, they set on a rescue mission to bring Madame Curie home and get to the bottom of why Dr FeelBad feels so bad.

          Audiences are immersed in this performance by wearing headsets as they walk about from scene to scene guided by actors. Experience a story that helps children (and adults) understand emotions. For tickets, visit HERE.

          Family Lounge presented by PLAYSTATION
          Now until 13 Oct 2019
          ST3PS, Changi Airport T3
          FREE


          Come immerse yourself into Singapore’s very first Family Lounge presented by PlayStation®. Be amongst the first in Singapore to try your hand at the Marvel's Iron Man VR Game before its official release! There will be movie screenings, Saturday performances and fitness activities for the whole family. Vist HERE for schedule.

          Island Jamboree @ Sentosa
          Now until 20 Oct 2019; 10am - 10pm
          Sentosa, Merlion Plaza
          FREE


          Sentosa turns 47 this September, and it's throwing a big birthday bash! From 1 Sep - 20 Oct, Merlion Plaza and Merlion Walk are transforming into a mini carnival complete with arcade game booths where you can win limited edition Sentosa merchandise, interactive photo points and roving musicians. Also, don’t forget to catch a very special edition of Merlion Magic Lights! Visit HERE for more information.

          SNCF Bicentennial Pop-art Event: Coming Together As One Through Art
          Now until 28 Oct 2019; 3pm - 9pm
          Plaza Singapura, Outdoor Front Plaza
          FREE


          Themed Better Together, let us take you on a journey through the Singapore Co-operative Movement from the 1900s to present. Be sure to experience fun and interactive installations while learning about the impact people can create when they band together towards a common goal.

          The Dessert Museum
          4 - 27 Oct
          Sun - Thu , 10am to 10pm | Fri & Sat , 10am to 2am
          Plaza Singapura, Main Atrium, Level 1 


          Feast your eyes and get your taste buds ready for this dreamy wonderland of five insta-worthy dessert themed room at the 1st Dessert Museum in Singapore! Min. spend of $45 in a single receipt for a pair of entry tickets. Free entry for children below 3 years old.

          Rhododendron Radience
          Now until 28 Oct 2019; 9am - 9pm
          Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay
          Admission charges apply


          Showcased for the first time in a floral display at Gardens by the Bay, rhododendrons are among the showiest flowering shrubs admired for their big, beautiful and bright blooms. Amidst this lush and vibrant landscape filled with over 80 varieties of rhododendrons in white, yellow, orange and red, spot the Gardens' adorable bear mascots soaking up the great outdoors. From camping and fishing to zip-lining and hot air ballooning, join in the adventure as you explore this colourful display.

          Halloween Fun For Everyone
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          Universal Studios Singapore
          Admission charges apply


          This September and October, enjoy family-friendly Halloween fun at Universal Studios Singapore. Join Illumination’s Minion Monsters in a mini-parade with goodies at Minion Monsters Tricky Treats, watch a musical-filled show of friendship and kindness in Trick or Treat with Sesame Street, or take part in interactive games at the all-new Halloween Carnival. For more details, visit HERE.

          Fight the Deadliest Monster
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          Singapore Zoo & Jurong Bird Park
          Admission charges apply


          This October, kids enter Jurong Bird Park and Singapore Zoo for free with every full paying adult*! Join in the fight against the deadliest monster, plastic! Over a million animals are killed each year when they mistake plastic waste for food or get entangled in plastic debris. Plastic waste in our environment never breaks down and never goes away. Witness the extent of plastic build up in aquatic habitats through the interactive Shore Debris Table and learn how binning trash right will keep plastic waste out of wild habitats. For full details on activities, visit HERE.

          *Applicable for local residents only. Free admission for one child (Ages 3 – 12 years old) with each full paying adult admission.

          Happy HA-GLOW-EEN
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          River Safari
          Admission charges apply


          Join in for a glowing fun party as the Mermicornos and River Safari's river friends celebrate the discovery of the hidden river gem. Complete the River Gem Trail to take home limited-edition tokidoki x River Safari pins. Plus, have fun in exciting Ha-Glow-een games and crafts! For more details, visit HERE.

          Halloween Brick-or-Treat
          Now until 3 Nov 2019
          Mon - Thur: 4pm - 6pm | Fri, Sat & Sun: 3.30pm - 6pm
          LEGOLAND Malaysia
          Admission charges apply


          Time to step it up ghost hunters! Miniland is overrun with ghosts. Use the LEGO® Hidden Side app to find and catch them! Looking to show off your spooky side? Awesome kids, dress up in your best Halloween costume & get FREE ENTRY to the park throughout the event period. Best costume participant stands a chance to win EXCLUSIVE LEGO® Hidden Side set! For more details in activities, visit HERE.

          Children’s Biennale 2019: Embracing Wonder
          Now until 29 Dec 2019
          Sat–Thu: 10am–7pm | Fri: 10am–9pm
          National Gallery Singapore
          Free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs). Ticket prices start at $20 for others


          Back for the second edition, the Children’s Biennale has opened at the National Gallery Singapore from now and will run all the way until 29 December 2019. This year’s exhibition is themed ‘Embracing Wonder’ and invites kids all all ages to experience a new dimension of creativity and open themselves up to wondrous surprises. Through 11 imaginative artwork installations, kids can embrace a fantastic, magical world by composing their own tunes, braiding giant tresses, wandering beneath massive lanterns, popping into a dome, and more. And the best part? It is all FREE for for Singaporeans and PRs! Read more about our experience HERE.

          From Singapore to Singaporean: The Bicentennial Experience
          Now until 31 Dec 2019
          Time Traveller: Monday: 0830 – 1730 | Tuesday – Sunday: 0830 – 2200
          Pathfinder: Monday – Sunday: 0830 – 2230
          Echoes: Tuesday – Sunday: 1900 – 2230
          Fort Canning Centre (5 Cox Terrace, Singapore 179620)
          FREE


          As the centrepiece event of the Singapore Bicentennial, this multimedia sensory experience brings you back in time to witness key moments in Singapore’s transformation from as far back as 1299. It comprises of two parts - Time Traveller and Pathfinder. The first is an indoor cinematic, immersive journey which requires pre-booking of time slots while the latter is an outdoor exploratory trail featuring eight interactive pavilions and installations with no pre-registration required. Read more about my experience HERE.

          I-Opener by Playeum
          Now until 26 Apr 2020
          Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm (Closed on Mondays)
          Playeum
          $22 per child (1-12) | Accompanying adult: Free | Additional accompanying adult: $10


          I-Opener features the aesthetic and sensory play-worlds co-created by individuals with various disabilities, and also without. It invites kids aged 1 to 12 to explore their senses through play and the arts.


          As we all know, the senses - sight, touch and hearing all play an important role in a child’s discovery of the world as well as their social-emotional development. But more than that, this exhibition DIFFERS from Playeum's previous exhibitions in that instead of just introducing the art of play to kids, it allows kids to step into the world of those with special needs and experience the way how they interact, play and sense the world around them. Read my review HERE.

          200: A Natural History
          4 Jun 2019 - Jun 2020
          Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum
          Admission charges apply


          As part of Singapore’s Bicentennial, LKCNHM reflects upon 200 significant natural history events in the island’s past. These interweaving, and sometimes quirky, threads of animals, plants, events, places and people have played an important role in shaping the country’s natural heritage. For more information, visit HERE.


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          Now, who hasn't heard of NERF guns? More importantly though, who hasn't played with a NERF gun before??? Because if you have shot someone with a NERF bullet before and felt immensely happy, chances are you will LOVE the brand new NERF Action Experience Arena at Marina Square!


          And I'm not just talking about the kids. 😂


          Located on the first floor of Marina Square - a few steps away from Carl's Jr - the NERF Action Xperience Arena is a massive18,000 square feet indoor play facility with four unique play zones that will appeal to the NERF fanatic.


          The main play areas are open to kids aged 7 and above, as well as adults. For kids below 6 years old, there is a dedicated playground for them but more on that later.

          Because first, let's head to the most exciting zones within the play arena.

          COMPETE


          If you have always harboured a dream to go all full-Rambo style and shoot at enemies to your heart's content, then this zone is for you. More specifically, the CAMP DUNE zone.


          The COMPETE area features two zones - CAMP DUNE and ZOMBIE CITY. The former has a war zone-esque theme complete with barriers and bullets strewn across the floor.


          After we went through a safety briefing, put on our safety goggles and selected our NERF guns of choice, it was time to battle!

          Modelled after the classic Capture the Flag game, our mission was to capture our coloured flags placed in the middle of the room and bring them back to our safe zone.


          The team with the most number of flags captured by the end of the game wins but trust me, the thrill of the game was actually firing at one another... who cares about winning??? LOL. Truth be told, if you are a parent with NERF guns at home, you will know the mental stress that one goes through whenever the kids have a NERF game - "Careful, don't shoot at the eyes!", "Don't anyhow shoot, later cannot find the bullets!", "Stop screaming, lower your voices!" and my most dreaded one, "Aiyoh, the bullets are everywhere!"

          Here, I can shoot my NERF gun without any of those worries. Best of all, I don't have to pick up the bullets after play!!! 😂😂😂

          But if shooting at one another isn't your kind of thing, then head to ZOMBIE CITY.


          Don't worry, there are NO real zombies inside the game chamber... only zombies on screens and figurines.


          Opposing teams are tasked to shoot at their own colour's zombies to collect points, and find hidden missileheads in order to obtain “vaccines” for their team.


          It's relatively straight-forward and fun shooting stuff. The biggest challenge would be finding enough ammo to load your guns - a choice between the Disruptor which has an easy aim and Surgefire, which holds more foam bullets. Personally, I prefer the Surgefire.


          CONQUER

          Conquer consists of 4 play areas, with The Volcano being one of them.

          The premise of The Volcano is simple: you are trapped in a volcano and have one minute to escape. How many targets can you shoot (with limited bullets) in the shortest possible time?


          The thrill is definitely trying to outdo your friends by scoring the most points in the quickest time possible... and oh, jumping sideways into the air, and into a foam pit while firing at targets at the same time. Just like how those Hollywood movies do it.


          The other 3 play areas are located together, in a hige towering rope obstacle course structure.


          If your kids love going for aerial rope obstacle challenges, then The Summit is for them.


          A two-tiered high-rope course, The Summit consists of a beginner and intermmediate levels with obstacles of varying difficulties.




          Im the middle of the obstacle course lies The Cliff, which I think is self-explanatory. 😁


          The final play area, if you can call it that, is The Glacier which essentially is a steep slide that offers a quick descent!


          Unfortunately, the slide was closed while we were there.

          One bugbear I have of the area though, is the poor layout of this zone. That's because this zone consists of THREE play areas - the rope obstacle course, the climbing wall and the slide. And there is only ONE queuing area for all of them. To compound matters, this staircase is for both entry and exit, so you can imagine the chaos during peak periods. Hopefully, they will work on improving it.


          CHALLENGE


          Have kids who are under 7 years old? Although they will not be able to participate in the zones mentioned above, they can head here for a supercharged and active play experience.


          Besides the joy of sliding into a huge ball pit at the playground, kids can also challenge their agility skills at the mini obstacle course where they can crawl through oversized bolts and leap over tyres.



          Even better, they can zoom through the car track or fly through the air at high speeds on the zip line!


          I like how the younger kids can also go on a mini rope obstacle course here as well. Everything is a miniaturized version, at a much lower level so I think young kids will love to have a go at this!



          For parents who are watching over their kids, there are ample seating areas around the play areas too.


          CREATE


          This zone is all about all fun and no rules. Here, you will be handed either a white tee or tote bag and you can blast them with NERF squirt guns to create your own one-of-a-kind design!


          So what is the price of NERF fun?

          Do note that there is only a flat rate for admissions. There is no cheaper rate for kids.

          The basic package is the Kick Off one, which is priced at $29 for Peak and $26 for Off-peak and allows 2-hour access to COMPETE and CONQUER zones.

          If you wish to design your own tee or tote bag at CREATE, then go for the Massive package ($39 for Peak and $36 for Off-peak) which is a 3-hour play session for the COMPETE, CONQUER and CREATE zones.

          For kids below 7 years old who can only play at the CHALLENGE zone, they can get the 2-hour play session for $22 for Peak and $19 for Off-peak which includes admission for one parent.


          BUT BUT BUT if you are thinking of going for the Kick Off package at $29, this is NOT the cheapest rate! If you purchase via online, the rate is $26.10 or if you have a PAssion card, you enjoy a 15% discount ($24.65).

          However, I have found an even better deal! Purchase via KLOOK and pay only $23for the Kick Off package! You can head HERE to buy the tickets.


          Overall, it's a fun place to bring the kids... especially if your kids have already outgrown the kiddy indoor playgrounds. Because seriously, who doesn't love going absolutely crazy with NERF guns, unlimited ammo and shooting at one another with a vengence... without having to worry about cleaning up? 🙋‍♀️


          Useful Information

          NERF Action Xperience
          Marina Square, 6 Raffles Boulevard #01-208, Singapore 039594
          Opening Hours: 10am - 10 pm aaily (last entry at 7.30PM)
          Admission Prices
          Website

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          There is a new nature park in Singapore and even though there isn't a playground for kids, Thomson Nature Park is home to the ruins of an old Hainanese village that was there from the 1930s which offers adults and kids a glimpse into life in a Singapore kampung back in the 1960s.


          Located to the east of the Central Catchment Nature Reserve (CCNR), between Old Upper Thomson Road and Upper Thomson Road, Thomson Nature Park complements existing nature parks including Springleaf and Windsor Nature Parks to extend the green buffer for the CCNR.

          This 50-hectare buffer park is unique for its rich cultural heritage as the site of a former Hainan Village as well as housing a rich array of biodiversity and is notably a key conservation site for the critically endangered Raffles’ Banded Langur.


          There are a total of five walking trails spanning 3.8 km around the former village's road network - Ruins & Fig Trail (1.5km), Stream & Ferns Trail (1.4km), Rambutan Trail (0.4km), Langur Trail (0.15km) and Macque Trail (0.35km). All of them are relatively short distances which means kids will be able to go on them pretty effortlessly!


          Credit: NParks
          The trails have been specially curated to provide visitors insight into the ways of life during the kampung days as well as into the variety of floral and faunal species found in Thomson Nature Park.

          Personally, I think the Ruins and Figs Trail is the most interesting trail of the lot because it will bring visitors along a trail where there will be plenty of abandoned and old buildings to spot, giving them a chance to experience the heritage highlights of the Hainan Village through carefully conserved ruins.

          If you love nature, then go on the Stream and Ferns Trail which enables visitors to appreciate the freshwater habitat in Thomson Nature Park and observe the great diversity of ferns and aquatic animals present.


          But for the most of us - and especially for kids - the thrill will be trying to spot the remnants of a Hainanese village which will take them past building foundations, still-standing walls, abandoned wells and even old road networks. Yes, there were two real actual roads in the form of Lorong Pelita and Jalan Belang which connect the village to the main road in the past.



          Hainanese immigrants established the kampung in the 1930s and by the 1960s, there were close to 100 residents who lived there. But come the 1980s, the residents started moving out due to housing development plans, and the village was eventually covered by secondary forest.

          And look at some of the stuff they left behind!



          FUN FACT: The founder of Han's Cafe & Cake House previously lived in the village. Mr Han Choon Fook first set up a small bakery along Upper Thomson Road in 1978 and eventually expanded it to become the Han's cafe chain that we are now familiar with.

          As mentioned, the Ruins and Figs Trail is only 1.5km and is in a loop so it is extremely doable for families with kids. The terrain is relatively straight-forward, with a few gentle slopes along the way. Oh, and do note that bicycles, skate scooters and all form of wheeled transport are not allowed on the trails.


          Along the way, there are plenty of ruins to keep a lookout for.


          I love how information boards have been placed along the various sections of the trail, to let the visitors in on the history of how the villagers lived and who they are.


          And for some houses, you can still even see some parts of it still standing.


          Can you spot the staircase and low wall in the photo below?


          There are many abandoned wells to spot along the trail too, even a SQUARE one!


           It's really quite something seeing these ruins right before my very eyes - things that we don't really get to see often in modern Singapore.




          And if there is one particular ruins site that one should not miss, it will have to be this.


          This is probably the most "well-preserved" building of all the ruins in the park. You can still clearly see the different rooms of the house as well as the courtyard. This ruins site is also the one that one can get closest to - in case you are wondering, all of the ruins are out of bounds to visitors.


          I have marked the site of two ruins which you should not miss in the map below.


          Oh, and do keep an eye for this still-standing sprical staircase, which was part of a two-storey house - one of the only houses with two floors in the village and owned by the Eurasian Fox family. The head of the Fox family used to drive a mobile library and he helped to bring a wealth of knowledge to the residents and children in the village.


          And in case you must know, the park has a few Instagram-worthy spots as well. 😆


          The other trail worth going on is the Rambutan Trail which is on the other side of the park. This short 400m trail is on the actual site of Han's Rambutan Garden which was once owned by Mr Han Wai Toon who embarked on a quest to cultivate trees that would yield the perfect rambutan.


          The farmhouse occupied a vast piece of land and from the stairway that still remains, I can only imagine how beautiful the farmhouse must have been in its heyday.


          One can even still see the actual staircase that leads to Mr Han's master bedroom.


          Amazingly, the water source which irrigated the rambutan garden is still around - I can hear the trickling sounds of the spring water!


          For sure, Thomson Nature Park is unlike your usual nature parks in Singapore. The presence of an abandoned Hainanese village with its ruins scattered throughout the park definitely makes it an intriguing day out with the kids, giving them a glimpse of what life was like there in the past.

          There are limited parking onsite, as well as rest shelters near the entrance too. As for toilets, the nature park has them too.


          😂😂😂 I'm only kidding. There are modern washroom facilities at the entrance of the park.


          Useful Information

          Thomson Nature Park
          Address: Off Old Upper Thomson Road
          How to get there:
          By bus: 138, 138A, 167, 169, 860, 980 - Alight at Upper Thomson Road (Aft Tagore Dr, Bus stop ID: 56061) OR 138, 167, 169, 860, 980 - Alight at Upper Thomson Road (Bef Tagore Dr, Bus stop ID: 56069)
          Opening Hours: 7am – 7pm daily (entering or remaining in the park after 7pm is not allowed)
          Carpark charges: $0.60 per 30 min

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          Media Invite

          BUBBLE TEA FANS - I'm looking at my own monkies - it's time to up those sugar levels to 100% because the Bubble Tea Factory is set to be a feast for all the senses... without having to ingest any calories of course. 😆


          Sprawled over 7,000 sq ft at *Scape from 19 Oct to 18 Dec 2019, the quirky exhibition that will have ten multi-sensory and visually-stunning installations: from upside-down bubble tea trees and visually stunning installations, to creative and delicious bubble tea-inspired treats.


          Expect plenty of photo-worthy opportunities which will beautify your Instagram feed instantly.


          Because one cannot wrong with sweet pastel colours, photo-worthy, which should perk up the ears of all you Instagram fanatics. Think sweet pastel shades, nenon lights, a huge Pearl Pit and swinging on a giant pearl a lá Wrecking Ball. Basically, boba-themed EVERYTHING!


          As part of the bubbly experience, each visitor will be given a Boba Booster Pack upon entry which consists of a set of limited-edition collectible cards that feature interactive challenges to make it even more fun. Oh, and don't forget to claim your FREE cup of bubble tea at the end of it all!



          Ready to get all suagry high? Here's what to expect from the Bubble Tea Factory's interactive zones:

          BOBA-VERSE

          Visitors get a first taste of all things cutesy in The Factory, then find themselves walking through a mystical forest of illuminated straws in the Enchanted Forest.


          You will enter the Blue Coral Utapioca next, where you can pick your fave tea-scented upside-down boba trees to lounge under!


          THE SECRET

          See the small hole in the photo above? Crawl through that and you will be transported into the Wrap Zone where everything is metallic and shiny.


          Push aside the green curtain and you'll be able to live it up like a true Boba Ballin' celebrity - only on Instagram of course.



          But wait, be sure to look for a mirror because behind it lies a ??? hidden galaxy... or if you prefer, a definite IG-worthy moment. 😂


          BOBA LAB


          Here, the experiential nature goes up a notch with free smells of different bubble tea aroma at the Smells like Tea Spirit section.


          Then, improve your IG game at the various photo booths - swing on a wrecking ball pearl at Taro-bly Wreck, pose with a BBT IV drip at Boba-jection and finish off by trapping yourself in a larger-than-life boba cup at XXL BBT!




          And don't forget to use one of your Power Cards here at Experimental Treats to collect your free sample of either Bubble Tea flvoured popcorn or Brown Sugar borad beans!

          PEARL-DUCTION LINE

          Personally, this is my most fave section of the lot.

          Because who can resist a BALL PIT, no???


          Kids (and adults) will delight in diving into a giant 'pot' of balls which resemble taro-bly cute pearls at the Pearl Pit.




          Want some hidden fun? Open one of the doors at the Pearlsonality Chamber for a great photo opp!


          I won't tell you which one though!


          And while learning some fun facts about all things boba at Ode to my Pearl, kids can have a go at see-sawing with a giant BBT.


          Which obviously I am too heavy for. Must be all the BBT. 😁


          Don't forget to use your Power Card here too, to collect your free cup of bubble tea drink at the Drinks Collection counter!


          MILK-TEA WAY

          The final zone places visitors in the Tea Terminal, where they will commence boarding on Air BBT to head to the exit. But don't fret, you will be able to enjoy one final (or a few) IG-worthy shot within the Air BBT aeroplane!


          See what I mean? LOL.


          Finally, end your visit by leaving some words on the Happiness Wall.


          If you wish to take a slice of BBT fun back home, there are also exclusive BBT merchandise on sale. Some of them are really just too cute.  YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!



          The Bubble Tea Factory will only be open for 2 months, beginning from 19 October 2019 so all BBT lovers, you know where to go for your sugary high fix!


          But wait, there's a super promotion for all... for one day only!

          FREE Entry for all

          Strictly for ONE DAY only, the Bubble Tea Factory will be open to the first 1,000 visitors for FREE on 19 October 2019 from 12pm to 6pm! Don't say I never jio okay - this is your only chance to experience the whimsical Boba Wonderland for FREE!





          Useful Information

          The Bubble Tea Factory
          Date: 19 October to 18 December 2019
          Time: Weekdays - 4pm to 10pm; Weekends - 10am to 10pm
          Venue: *SCAPE (2 Orchard Link, Singapore 237978)
          Ticket prices: $24 on weekdays, $28 on weekends/PH/eve of PH
          Get your tickets at www.thebubbleteafactory.co

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          Nature lovers are having it good. After the opening of Thomson Nature Park last week, a new green space opens today - the Gallop Extension at Singapore Botanic Gardens!


          An extension of the Tyersall-Gallop Core of the Singapore Botanic Gardens, Gallop Extension will be the only location in Singapore where visitors can see a curated interpretation of various habitats that are representative of forests in the region.

          Occupying a total land area of 8 hectares, only two features of Gallop Extension will be opened for now with the other features opening in 2020. The Mingxin Foundation Rambler's Ridge is a re-created tropical ridge habitat while the OCBC Arboretum is a living library of trees with more than 200 species of dipterocarps.


          For families with kids, the Mingxin Foundation Rambler's Ridge will be perfect for that short morning or evening nature walk.


          Rambler's Ridge has a ridge-top hiking trail which leads to the highest point in the Singapore Botanic Gardens. Okay, so it is only 40m above sea level which is hardly Bukit Timah Hill standard but it is a trail that even younger kids can complete on their own.




          The ridge draws its inspiration from unique forest habitats on the tropical hills of Southeast Asia. Some of these environments are known to be harsh, with poor soil and exposure to strong winds.


          Visitors will be able to see plants such as the carnivorous Narrow-Lid Pitcher Plant and Raffles' Pitcher Plant which have adapted to the harsh environment of the hills.



          Even more interestingly for kids, there are also Ant Plants along the ridge which have modified roots, stems and leaves that are hollow, producing a network of tunnels for ants to live in!



          The walk along the ridge is short and takes about 15 minutes, which is suited to families with even younger kids. Amazingly, it feels a little cooler atop of the ridge... much like being in the mountains!



          The other second feature to open at Gallop Extension is the OCBC Arboretum, a conservation project and a huge living library for dipterocarps species of trees.



          Wait, what are dipterocarps?

          They are the giants of the forest and can grow up to 80m tall! These trees dominate the rain forests of Southeast Asia, home to a rich diversity of flora and fauna.


          A member of the dipterocarps family is the Shorea.


          Sounds familiar? That's because if you are as old as me, you will have probably learnt about it and how it is dispersed by wind during primary school days. 😁



          The Arboretum acts as a 'gene bank', a living repository of over 200 species of dipterocarps, many of which are threatened by deforestation.



          All in all, a great green space to spend some time in the arms of nature.


          Gallop Extension is due to be even bigger when the COMO Adventure Grove playground, Forest Discovery Centre and Canopy Link opens in 2020. For now, even though the Mingxin Foundation Rambler's Ridge and OCBC Arboretum may occupy a small area within the Gallop Extension, it is still worth a visit - I strongly recommend visiting the adjacent The Learning Forest which is awesome (and you can read my review HERE) and ending off your visit to the Botanic Gardens to Gallop Extension.


          In addition, if you are heading down this weekend and next Deepavali long weekend, there will specially organised free programmes and activities for everyone! These include guided tours, talks, demonstrations, concerts, movie screenings and craft activities for kids.

          There will also be free guided shuttle bus services every 10 to 15 minutes from Botanic Gardens MRT Station (Exit B), the Botany Centre (Tanglin Gate) drop-off point and Nassim Gate Visitor Centre drop-off point, from 2pm to 6pm on 19 October 2019, and 10am to 6pm on 20, 26 and 27 October 2019. For a detailed listing of all activities happening, visit HERE.


          Useful Information

          Gallop Extension
          Mingxin Foundation Rambler's Ridge and OCBC Arboretum




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          For most kids, this coming Deepavali long weekend will mark the end of the exams! (Not for mine though 😥)

          What's for certain is that the 3-day break will definitely be welcomed by all. So just how can you keep the kids occupied during the long weekend? Check out these 35 kid-friendly activities to enjoy together as a family, of which more than half are FREE!



          Deepavali Celebrations 2019
          Now until 10 Nov 2019
          7pm to Midnight
          Serangoon Road & Race Course Road
          FREE


          Little India’s extravagant biannual event is back this year with a whole new twist catch elements of drama, dance and vehicle convoy, commemorating Singapore’s bicentennial year. Race Course Road comes alive showcasing the history of Little India in the parade and there will be launch of the Street Light Up.

          The Gingerbread Man
          From 23 Oct 2019
          Weekdays: 10am | Weekends & Public Holidays: 11am & 2pm
          KC Arts Centre - Home of SRT
          $26, $29


          This new original play from SRT’s The Little Company is a reimagining of the classic tale, The Gingerbread Man - an uplifting story about the value of teamwork and friendship, set to a rousing, rock score.

          Ginger is a giant cookie who can walk, talk and most importantly, he loves to run, run, run as fast as he can! Teamwork is especially important on the farm where Ginger lives, but Ginger would rather do things on his own. Ginger ends up making a terrible mess and breaking his mother, Anya's most prized possession; the oven. Ginger is taken under the influence of Sly Fox, who lures him away from the farm with a promise of an exciting local race in which the first prize is a brand new oven. Of course, Sly Fox's real aim is to gobble Ginger up as soon as he can get Ginger back to the fox den. Anya and the farm animals realise Ginger is in danger and come to his rescue, but Ginger must learn how to work as a team in order to defeat the fox. For tickets, visit HERE.

          SpookyTown 2: The Masquerade Hunt
          25, 26, 27 Oct, 1, 2, 8 & 9 Nov 2019
          6:30pm – 10pm
          KidZania Singapore
          $43 per person


          SpookyTown returns for its annual Masquerade Ball and exciting activities are in store for the whole family this Halloween! Following the mysterious events that happened at SpookyTown: The Lost Carnival last year, look forward to a night of family-friendly adventure as you search for clues and embark on The Masquerade Hunt to locate the town’s missing Mayor Fabiola! For tickets, visit HERE.

          Bazaar In the Garden @ Jurong Lake Gardens
          26 Oct 2019; 9am - 5pm
          Jurong Lake Gardens, Garden House
          FREE


          Head to the first-ever gardening and lifestyle market in Jurong Lake Gardens! Double the scale this month, be sure to check out the food stalls, plant retailers and local businesses! There will also be fun craft activities suitable for children of all ages. Gardening enthusiasts, you can sign up for our various workshops to learn skills and techniques from our experienced speakers.

          PAssionWaVe x TGIF Bazaars Pop-Up Festival
          26 Oct 2019; 10am - 4pm
          Passion Wave at Marina Bay (11 Rhu Cross)
          FREE


          Enjoy the scenic Marina Bay skyline at PAssion WaVe @ Marina Bay as you shop for fresh produce and support local artisan products. Don't miss the free water try-outs from 2pm to 5pm!

          Saturdays @ ACM
          26 Oct 2019; 1pm - 5pm
          Asian Civilisations Museum
          FREE


          Welcome Deepavali this year with your very own candle holder to light up your home. Discover the triumphant story of good versus evil in Hindu mythology, and why lamps are lit during Deepavali during an interactive drama performance.

          The Grandstand's October Playdate
          26 Oct 2019; 9am - 1pm
          The Grandstand
          $10


          The Grandstand brings you the opportunity to bond with your little ones while trying out new enrichment activities at the October Playdate!  Come on down to The Grandstand on 26 Oct (Sat) for a morning of fun craft, robotics classes & much more.

          NParks Parks Festival 2019
          26 Oct 2019: 11am to 10.30pm
          27 Oct 2019: 8.30am to 12pm
          Esplanade Park, Empress Lawn and Queen Elizabeth Walk
          FREE

          Parks Festival is back for its fourth edition at Esplanade Park, Empress Lawn and Queen Elizabeth Walk from Sat, 26 Oct (11am to 10.30pm) to Sun, 27 Oct (8.30am to 12pm). Get active with a range of activities such as the Imagination Playground by ActiveSG, Piloxing and KpopX Fitness by ActiveGroove, and LTA’s Move Happy Cycling Festival. Kids can also have a ball of a time at the outdoor ball pit and inflatable play area! For more details on activities, visit HERE.

          NParks Concert Series in the Park: Rockestra®
          26 Oct 2019
          7pm - 10.30pm
          Empress Place, Empress Lawn
          FREE


          Hosted by Justin Misson and featuring local acts Enigma, Jive Talkin', SuperSonic, The Common People and The Jukuleles, get ready to party the night away to hits from the 00s' by Adele, Bruno Mars, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Kings of Leon, Lady Gaga, Maroon 5, One Republic, Pitbull and many more artistes!

          Singapore Polytechnic Presents- Pop Legends
          26 Oct 2019; 5.30pm - 6.30pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          Music is a universal language that transcends boundaries. This year, the Singapore Polytechnic Symphonic Band pays homage to music history and relive the jazzy 30s, disco 60s, rocking 80s and popping 21st century. Bring your family and friends, your dancing shoes and your picnic baskets and join us for a wonderful time!

          A Singapore Botanic Gardens Movie: "Marnie’s World”
          26 Oct 2019; 7.30pm - 9pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Eco Garden
          FREE


          Free movie event under the stars! As part of the 23rd German Film Festival and in partnership with Goethe-Institut Singapore and the Embassy of Belgium in Singapore, NParks is happy to present a Singapore premiere! Pack a picnic basket and bring your friends and family to enjoy a movie screening of “Marnie’s World” (English audio with no subtitles).

          Halloween Spooktacular @ Sentosa Cove
          26 Oct 2019; 6pm - 9pm
          ONEº15 Marina, Sentosa Cove Central Precinct and Quayside Isle
          FREE


          Join in the spooky fun at this Halloween event to mark fright night with a series of fun Halloween activities. Don’t forget to dress your kids in their scariest and most impressive Halloween costumes!

          ACM After Dark: Tales from Beyond
          26 Oct 2019; 7pm - 11pm
          Asian Civilisations Museum
          FREE


          Inspired by the famous 18th-century Chinese book Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio, ACM has created a fantastical world full of creatures in this one-night-only Halloween special. Get spooked by chilling performances and paranormal panellist talks. Or go on its first-ever, adults-only immersive experiential storytelling in the dark. Make your own wicked awesome souvenir or try special ACM After Dark customised ice cream and tea flavours by Butterknife Folk and Antea Social. You might just find your new favourite haunting ground. For programme details, visit HERE.

          NMS: Nightfall - An Interactive Experience for Youth
          26 Oct 2019; 7.30pm – Midnight
          Basement Level, National Museum of Singapore
          FREE


          Created for youth, by youth, NMS: Nightfall is an interactive experience that will reshape the way you experience history at the National Museum. Head to the National Museum’s first ever after-hours youth event, organised by our inaugural Youth Panel! Enjoy a night at the museum as you embark on a thrilling journey through our latest exhibition, An Old New World: From the East Indies to the Founding of Singapore, 1600s–1819, collecting clues and completing tasks to win prizes. Or chill out at our marketplace with light bites, good music, and some late-night shopping! Visit HERE for more information.

          Admission is free with limited capacity; registration on Peatix secures your entry and entitles you to a door gift when you drop in between 7.30pm and 11pm (while stocks last)!

          FUNTIME WITH BEN 10 & THE POWERPUFF GIRLS
          26 & 27 Oct 2019; 2pm & 5pm
          Eastpoint Mall


          Beloved Cartoon Network characters Ben10 and the effervescent Powerpuff Girls are making their way down to Eastpoint Mall to meet all of their fans. The human boy with the coveted Omnitrix watch-like device, Ben10, will be there on 26 October while the superpowered trio Powerpuff Girls will be taking centrestage on 27 October. Sessions are at 2pm and 5pm on both days.

          Disney: Magic of Animation
          26 Oct 2019 - 29 Mar 2020
          10am - 7pm
          ArtScience Museum
          Local Adult $15 | Local Concession $11 | Local 2A & 2C $41
          Adult $18 | Concession $15 | Local 2A & 2C $50


          Fall in love again with your favourite films and stories from Walt Disney Animation Studios! From Mickey Mouse to Anna and Elsa, uncover the magic behind almost a century of artistry and technological innovations that has brought to life our most beloved animated characters. Disney: Magic of Animation at ArtScience Museum also debuts original artworks from the highly anticipated Frozen 2, which will be on display before the release of the animated film in Singapore.

          In keeping with ArtScience Museum’s ethos of presenting captivating interactive exhibitions, the show also includes projections, audio-visual displays and alluring exhibits that transport visitors into the world of Disney’s films using hands-on educational activities. Go behind-the-scenes at the Walt Disney Animation Studios and delve into a world of art and technology developed by the talented artists and production teams behind the films. For more information and tickets, visit HERE.

          Weekends at The Artground
          26 & 27 Oct 2019
          The Artground
          FREE Admission


          From now until 22 Mar 2020, on display is The Curious Sky by Ng Fongyee, a multi-sensory arts space inspired by elements of the weather. Come and join in to sing in the rain, dance with the rainbow, hear the thunder rumble or simply look up for the endless possibilities The Curious Sky brings you. Entry into The Artground itself is free and donations are encouraged. For details on programmes for 26 & 27 Oct 2019, visit HERE.

          Deepavali Open House 2019
          26 & 27 Oct 2019
          26 Oct: 10am - 6pm | 27 Oct: 11am - 3pm
          Indian Heritage Centre
          FREE


          This Deepavali, feel right at home as you celebrate the Festival of Lights with us at Indian Heritage Centre!


          Pororo's Mini Monster Bash
          26 & 27 Oct 2019
          10.30am onwards
          Pororo Park Singapore
          Babies under 1: Free (Adults $6) | Toddlers under 2: $24.50 | Children aged 2 - 12: $29.90 | Accompanying Adults: $6


          Pororo Park Singapore is having a party and you're in for a scare! It's a Mini Monster Bash so dress up if you dare! What a great time to become the monster in your closet! Pororo & Friends is bringing Halloween town  for a ghoulish adventure so crawl on over to enjoy great fun. Visit HERE for more information.

          Istana Open House
          27 Oct 2019; 8.30am - 6pm
          Istana (Entrance to the Istana grounds is via the main gate at Orchard Road)
          FREE for Singaporeans and Singapore permanent residents. 
          Other visitors are required to pay an entrance fee of $2 per person

          There will be a variety of performances on the grounds during the Open House. For an entrance fee of $2, visitors could tour selected function rooms in the Istana building and view a special display of gifts presented to the President and the Prime Minister. Istana souvenirs are also sold at the Open House. All proceeds from the sale of the souvenirs and the entrance fees collected are donated to charity.

          Singapore Really Really Free Market
          27 Oct 2019; 8am - 12pm
          Amoy Street carpark, next to Thian Hock Keng Temple
          FREE

          The Really Really Free Market is a temporary market based on the concept of giving and building a community based on sharing resources, caring for one another and improving the collective lives of all. Everything is free! Come share your stuff (books, cds, toys, food, etc) or skills (tarot card reading, hair cutting, poetry writing, singing, etc) by giving them to others who need them!

          ASEAN-Russia Youth Orchestra
          27 Oct 2019; 5.30pm - 7.30pm
          Singapore Botanic Gardens, Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage
          FREE

          Join us in this exciting month as the ASEAN-Russia Youth Orchestra will be making their first appearance in Singapore! The stage will be filled with young talented musicians from all ASEAN countries and Russia, to bring forth a unique cultural performance at the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage. Under the direction of two experienced conductors from both Singapore and Russia, the Orchestra will play the classical masterpieces by renown composers such as Mozart, Mendelssohn, Rossinin, Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev. Additionally, the concert will be featuring Russian sopranos Irina Vashchenko and Anastasia Belukova and a folk group “Lubo-Milo” from Russia.

          Youths Celebrate! 2019 
          Now until 27 Oct 2019; 4pm - 11pm
          Supertree Grove, Bayfront Plaza & Colonnade
          FREE, unless otherwise stated


          Watch Supertree Grove transform into an enchanting neon jungle at this year’s youth festival, Youths Celebrate! Snap pictures of neon light installations and enjoy a host of exciting programmes from movie screenings and performances to upcycling workshops. Don’t forget to drop by the neon night market for interesting offerings, and the fun zone where you get to experience games and activities amidst vivid neon lights. Visit HERE for more details.

          The Dessert Museum
          Now until 27 Oct
          Sun - Thu , 10am to 10pm | Fri & Sat , 10am to 2am
          Plaza Singapura, Main Atrium, Level 1 


          Feast your eyes and get your taste buds ready for this dreamy wonderland of five insta-worthy dessert themed room at the 1st Dessert Museum in Singapore! Min. spend of $45 in a single receipt for a pair of entry tickets. Free entry for children below 3 years old.

          Rhododendron Radience
          Now until 28 Oct 2019; 9am - 9pm
          Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay
          Admission charges apply


          Showcased for the first time in a floral display at Gardens by the Bay, rhododendrons are among the showiest flowering shrubs admired for their big, beautiful and bright blooms. Amidst this lush and vibrant landscape filled with over 80 varieties of rhododendrons in white, yellow, orange and red, spot the Gardens' adorable bear mascots soaking up the great outdoors. From camping and fishing to zip-lining and hot air ballooning, join in the adventure as you explore this colourful display.

          Deepavali 2019 @ Gardens by the Bay
          Now until 28 Oct 2019
          Colonnade (Supertree Grove)
          FREE


          Gardens by the Bay celebrates Deepavali this year with a mix of tradition and experimentation at the Colonnade from 14 - 28 October 2019. Enjoy a series of informative and fun activities in conjunction with the exhibition on Indian Traditions in Singapore, and Rangoli art reimagined with reused bottles!
          Halloween Fun For Everyone
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          Universal Studios Singapore
          Admission charges apply


          This September and October, enjoy family-friendly Halloween fun at Universal Studios Singapore. Join Illumination’s Minion Monsters in a mini-parade with goodies at Minion Monsters Tricky Treats, watch a musical-filled show of friendship and kindness in Trick or Treat with Sesame Street, or take part in interactive games at the all-new Halloween Carnival. For more details, visit HERE.

          Fight the Deadliest Monster
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          Singapore Zoo & Jurong Bird Park
          Admission charges apply


          This October, kids enter Jurong Bird Park and Singapore Zoo for free with every full paying adult*! Join in the fight against the deadliest monster, plastic! Over a million animals are killed each year when they mistake plastic waste for food or get entangled in plastic debris. Plastic waste in our environment never breaks down and never goes away. Witness the extent of plastic build up in aquatic habitats through the interactive Shore Debris Table and learn how binning trash right will keep plastic waste out of wild habitats. For full details on activities, visit HERE.

          *Applicable for local residents only. Free admission for one child (Ages 3 – 12 years old) with each full paying adult admission.

          Happy HA-GLOW-EEN
          Now until 31 Oct 2019
          River Safari
          Admission charges apply


          Join in for a glowing fun party as the Mermicornos and River Safari's river friends celebrate the discovery of the hidden river gem. Complete the River Gem Trail to take home limited-edition tokidoki x River Safari pins. Plus, have fun in exciting Ha-Glow-een games and crafts! For more details, visit HERE.

          Halloween Brick-or-Treat
          Now until 3 Nov 2019
          Mon - Thur: 4pm - 6pm | Fri, Sat & Sun: 3.30pm - 6pm
          LEGOLAND Malaysia
          Admission charges apply


          Time to step it up ghost hunters! Miniland is overrun with ghosts. Use the LEGO® Hidden Side app to find and catch them! Looking to show off your spooky side? Awesome kids, dress up in your best Halloween costume & get FREE ENTRY to the park throughout the event period. Best costume participant stands a chance to win EXCLUSIVE LEGO® Hidden Side set! For more details in activities, visit HERE.

          The Bubble Tea Factory
          From now until 18 Dec 2019
          Weekdays - 4pm to 10pm | Weekends - 10am to 10pm
          *SCAPE (2 Orchard Link, Singapore 237978)
          $24 on weekdays | $28 on weekends/PH/eve of PH


          The first of its kind in Singapore, The Bubble Tea Factory (TBTF) is an immersive, multi-sensory journey that takes you through an enchanting world of bubble tea. Spanning across more than 10 playful, visually spectacular installations, you will be treated to an experience like no other! Read my review HERE.

          Children’s Biennale 2019: Embracing Wonder
          Now until 29 Dec 2019
          Sat–Thu: 10am–7pm | Fri: 10am–9pm
          National Gallery Singapore
          Free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs). Ticket prices start at $20 for others


          Back for the second edition, the Children’s Biennale has opened at the National Gallery Singapore from now and will run all the way until 29 December 2019. This year’s exhibition is themed ‘Embracing Wonder’ and invites kids all all ages to experience a new dimension of creativity and open themselves up to wondrous surprises. Through 11 imaginative artwork installations, kids can embrace a fantastic, magical world by composing their own tunes, braiding giant tresses, wandering beneath massive lanterns, popping into a dome, and more. And the best part? It is all FREE for for Singaporeans and PRs! Read more about our experience HERE.

          From Singapore to Singaporean: The Bicentennial Experience
          Now until 31 Dec 2019
          Time Traveller: Monday: 0830 – 1730 | Tuesday – Sunday: 0830 – 2200
          Pathfinder: Monday – Sunday: 0830 – 2230
          Echoes: Tuesday – Sunday: 1900 – 2230
          Fort Canning Centre (5 Cox Terrace, Singapore 179620)
          FREE


          As the centrepiece event of the Singapore Bicentennial, this multimedia sensory experience brings you back in time to witness key moments in Singapore’s transformation from as far back as 1299. It comprises of two parts - Time Traveller and Pathfinder. The first is an indoor cinematic, immersive journey which requires pre-booking of time slots while the latter is an outdoor exploratory trail featuring eight interactive pavilions and installations with no pre-registration required. Read more about my experience HERE.

          I-Opener by Playeum
          Now until 26 Apr 2020
          Tues - Sun: 10am - 6pm (Closed on Mondays)
          Playeum
          $22 per child (1-12) | Accompanying adult: Free | Additional accompanying adult: $10


          I-Opener features the aesthetic and sensory play-worlds co-created by individuals with various disabilities, and also without. It invites kids aged 1 to 12 to explore their senses through play and the arts.


          As we all know, the senses - sight, touch and hearing all play an important role in a child’s discovery of the world as well as their social-emotional development. But more than that, this exhibition DIFFERS from Playeum's previous exhibitions in that instead of just introducing the art of play to kids, it allows kids to step into the world of those with special needs and experience the way how they interact, play and sense the world around them. Read my review HERE.

          200: A Natural History
          4 Jun 2019 - Jun 2020
          Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum
          Admission charges apply


          As part of Singapore’s Bicentennial, LKCNHM reflects upon 200 significant natural history events in the island’s past. These interweaving, and sometimes quirky, threads of animals, plants, events, places and people have played an important role in shaping the country’s natural heritage. For more information, visit HERE.


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          Media Invite

          There's a brand new exhibition in town which allows visitors to uncover all the magic behind Walt Disney Animation Studios’ most beloved animated movies from Snow White and Bambi to Zootopia and Moana. 


          Oh and yes, a little exclusive sneak peek at original artworks from the highly-anticipated film, Frozen 2 - artworks that have not been released yet.


          Titled 'Disney: Magic of Animation', the exhibtion opens at ArtScience Museum on 26 October 2019 and lasts all the way until 29 March 2020. And the ArtScience Museum is perhaps the most ideal place to stage it because it is where art, science, culture and technology come together... something which is similar to the art of animation where hand-drawn artworks used to be what defined Disney animation movies from the 1920s and gradually progressed to the digital animation that we are familiar today.



          Shown in Southeast Asia for the first time, the exhibition offers visitors the rare opportunity to experience over 90 magical years of Disney animation.


          And it all began with Steamboat Willie starring Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse.


          This section features original story sketches and animation drawings from some of the earliest Disney films. This gallery also includes a physical recreation of the iconic steamboat from Steamboat Willie (1928), the first Disney cartoon to have sound synchronised with the animation on screen.


          The exhibition features over 500 exceptional art pieces, including original drawings, paintings, sketches and concept art curated by the Walt Disney Animation Research Library. Like this sketch of Mickey and Minnie.


          Bold technological innovations then allowed Disney animators in the 1930s to explore and apply new artistic principles to capture nuances of human and animal movements and idiosyncrasies more accurately.


          It's pretty fascinating to see what the initial concept artworks were for some of the most iconic Disney characters we have come to love... like the princess below.


          Can you tell she is actually Snow White??? And here are some more of the initial impressions of the 7 Dwarves.


          Other than just exhibits of sketches, the exhibition also has interactive elements to you know, keep the kids occupied.


          Following the success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937), the world's first feature-length animated film in Technicolor, Disney Studios’ artists threw themselves into the creation of a number of remarkable films including Pinocchio (1940), Fantasia (1940), Dumbo (1941) and Bambi (1942), amazing people all around the world with magical new animation techniques.





          During the 1950s and 1960s, Disney animators started to develop numerous new production technologies as they sought to achieve even higher quality in their films.

          This resulted in a bold and brilliant variety of artistic styles with background paintings and concept art from films including Lady and the Tramp (1955), Sleeping Beauty (1959) and One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961) that showcase the talents of artists who created diverse visual worlds.



          Do you believe that the this is actually meant to be Sleeping Beauty???




          The 1990s was where the Disney Renaissance began. This golden period of Disney animation saw the huge successes of  The Little Mermaid (1989), Beauty and the Beast (1991), The Lion King (1994), Pocahontas (1995), Mulan (1998) and Tarzan (1999).



          My facve of the lot has to be this life-sized projection of Belle and the Beast dancing in the ballroom. Perfect for that IG boomerang shot.


          Oh, this was how the initial concept artwork of the Beast. 😆







          Another fave installation of mine is the sound booth, which lets you re-create sound effects like thunder, galloping horses and sword fighting for Mulan.



          The final section of the exhibition conveys impactful messages that build on social values, such as the importance of family bonds, cultural diversity and respect for nature, which includes films like Tangled (2010), Wreck-It Ralph (2012), Frozen (2013), Big Hero 6 (2014), Zootopia (2016) and Moana (2016).








          Do keep a lookout for this actual model of Sugar Rush Mountain, which is made entirely out of actual cookies and other sweets!


          Of course, the highlight of this section is the assortment of never-before-seen original artworks from the yet to be released Frozen 2.


           

          The exhibition closes with a cool installation which offers a photo oppotunity to let it all go with Anna and Elsa... which is doused in fiery red Autumn colours, perhaps an indication of the theme of Frozen 2.


          Final thoughts of the Disney: Magic of Animation exhibition? I'll be candid and say that the exhibition will probably be deemed boring to younger kids. Even though there are a few interactive exhibits, the primary aim of the exhibits is to showcase the thoughts, effort and processes that go into combining both the art and the science of animation into one - a filmmaking technique which Disney have pioneered and perfected for almost a century.

          So if your kids have all along been fascinated by how animation is brought to life on the big screen, this is the exhibtion you must bring them to.


          Useful Information

          Disney: Magic of Animation
          26 October 2019 till 29 March 2020
          10am to 7pm daily
          ArtScience Museum
          Tickets:
          Website

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          Media Invite

          There's something about Japan that makes it so endearing, isn't it? It has that irresistible mix of culture and modernity, amazing food, natural wonders and fun theme parks. On top of it all, it is a country that is clean and safe... which can only mean one thing: it is perfect for a family adventure.


          And of all the major cities in Japan like Tokyo, Sapporo and Kyoto, Osaka can sometimes be overlooked. I last visited Osaka even before when I was married so I can probably be forgiven for forgetting how much Osaka can actually be - espeically after spending 6 days and 5 nights in Osaka with the family!


          Our trip was made in collaboration with Klook, which in case you didn't know, is the world-leading travel activities and services booking platform by allowing travellers a seamless way to book attractions, tours, local transportation, best foods and must-eats, and unique experiences around the world on its website and app. In other words, convenience and no-queuing-needed FTW!

          We landed in Kansai Airport, Osaka in the late afternoon and the first thing we did was to pick up our Osaka Amazing Pass which gave us unlimited use of the Osaka subway, tramway, and bus network plus FREE entry to more than 50(!) of Osaka's top tourist attractions like the Osaka Castle, Osaka Zoo, Nagai Botanical Gardens, and even LEGOLAND Discovery Center Osaka! You can choose either the 1-Day or 2-Day pass.


          Klook is currently the cheapest place to buy the Osaka Amazing Pass. Not only that, it is also extremely convenient to pick up or passes at the airport. All I had to do was to locate the HIS counter 1F next to the Northern Exit in the Arrival Hall, show my e-booking via the Kllok app in my phone and it was done in less than 5 minutes.


          I pity the monkies who thought they had all the time in the world to play a game of Mario Kart on the Nintendo Switch. 😂


          We also booked the ICOCA IC Card through Klook, which is an all-in-one travel tap card for JR West trains, subway, private railway, and buses in the Kansai area, much like own EZ-Link card. It comes pre-loaded with JPY1,500 and can be easily topped up at any ICOCA IC Card train stations. Pretty convenient card to have especially since our Osaka Amazing Pass will only be valid for 2 days so we relied on this card for transport during the remaining days in Osaka.


          And with that, we were ready to start our Osaka trip proper!


          OSAKA DAY 1

          For our accommodation, we stayed at the stupendous Karaksa Hotel Osaka Namba which is located a 5-min walk away from the Shisaibashi Shopping Street and Dotonbori food haven, and a 15-min walk away from the main Namba station so it was extremely accessible.


          The rooms were clean and functional but what the monkies particularly loved was the snack bar at the hotel will be opened daily to guests where we had a free flow of drinks, hot beverages and instant soups from the vending machine! There is even a soft drink mixer machine which the monkies absolutely adored. I wonder why.

          Anyway, since it was close to 6pm by the time we checked into the hotel, there was only one thing on our minds - FOOD! And there was no better way to kick-start our Osaka holiday than a seafood meal at Isomaru Suisan Bar.


          Isomaru Suisan Bar opens 24 hours, 7 days a week and is extremely popular not only with tourists but also the locals. Steeping inside, the wifey was smittened with the restaurant's whimsical and vibrant interior, which features paper lanterns, wooden panels and colorful illustrations on the walls.


          Really felt like a bustling place... AND IT IS. Because there was long queue outside the restaurant when we arrived. Fortunately, I already pre-booked our dinner slot through Klook (you can choose your dining time at the point of booking) and we were shown to our table immediately, by-passing the queue. 😄


          We had the Standard Set which consisted of fresh sashimi, crab miso, cuttlefish, seafood skewers, fresh scallops and clams.





          The seafood was so fresh and good, and I thought it was extremely worth it. Just take a look at our table and you will understand why we were so stuffed.


          Well, Ale could resist finishing everything!


          After dinner, we then walked off the calories at the bustling Shinsaibashi shopping street before heading back to the hotel.



          OSAKA DAY 2

          Cup Noodles Museum Ikeda


          Orginally, this wasn't in our itinerary but after I found out about this place, I knew I had to bring the monkies to the Cup Noodles Museum Ikeda for a visit... especially since they are such fans of cup noodles. 😅

          In case you didn't know, Ikeda, Osaka is the birthplace of instant noodles. In 1958, the world's first instant noodle product, "Chicken Ramen," originated in a shed of the house of Momofuku Ando, the inventor of instant noodles and the founder of Nissin Food.


          In honour of him - and also to celebrate the impact of cup noodles on the entire world, the museum was established in 1999 to introduce the history of instant noodles and convey the significance of innovation and discovery in the stages of invention.


          Entry to the museum is FREE and we were taken on a journey through the Instant Noodles Tunnel where it chowcases the various range of instant noodles and how a single product grew into a global dietary culture... including the very first Chicken Ramen packaging.


          But the highlight for the monkies must surely be the chance to make their very own customised Cup Noodle ramen at the My CUPNOODLES Factory.


          For 500yen, you can purchase one empty cup which you can design the packaging, select the soup, and pick out a few ingredients to go into it before the staff seal it for you.





          They even provide a large bubble wrap for your completed cup noodle! Ah, the thoughtfulness of the Japanese.


          If you have time in Osaka, I definitely recommend visiting the museum and bringing back your very own cup noodle as a souvenir!


          Umeda Sky Building


          After the Cup Noodles Museum, it was time to put our Osaka Amazing Pass to work and the first place we visited was Umeda Sky Building which consists of two towers that are connected by the "Floating Garden Observatory" on the 39th floor.


          Access to the Observatory is free of course, thanks to our Osaka Amazing Pass and the view on the 39th floor was astounding.


          We enjoyed an unobstructed 360-degree view of Osaka and yes, we couldn't leave without snapping a few photos.



          Osaka Castle


          Let me just put it this way: no trip to Osaka is complete without a stop at the Osaka Castle.

          Founded some 400 years ago,the castle is regarded as the second "great unifier" of political factions in Japan and is one of the most famous castles in Japan.

          The inside of the castle is essentially a modern museum where weapons, armors, and folklife items and artifacts from those days are on display. Head to the topmost 8th floor for a view of the castle's surroundings.


          Osaka Castle was not too bad but I think the hot weather really sapped our energy. It was 34 degrees when we were there in September!


          Illusion Museum

          Luckily for us, we discovered the Illusion Museum which was in the building just beside the castle.


          Entry to the Illusion Museum was included in the Pass (yay!) and it was air-conditioned! 😁

          The exhibits within the musuem are similar to those found at Trickeye Museum at RWS, but on a smaller scale and occupying a smaller area.



          Nonetheless, the monkies still had a great time as you can probably tell.


          Tombori River Cruise


          Our final use of the Osaka Amazing Pass was for the Tombori River Cruise, a 20-minute mini-cruise along the Dotonbori waterway.


          Along the way, we were treated to some of Naniwa’s most well-known sights. TIP: Try to time your cruise during the evening time so that you can catch the gorgeous sunset from the boat!


          You know, I don't usually like city or discount passes when we travel because we tend to like to take things easy at our own pace. That said, the Osaka Amazing Pass ended up being extremely useful for us as we got to cover some of the most popular Osaka attractions in one day!

          The total entrance fee of the attractions we exceeded far exceeded the cost of one Osaka Amazing Pass, and it included FREE subway and bus transport too! Need more convincing? The Pass includes free entry to LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Osaka too (which we didn't visit) and its admission price is about S$30 per person. The price of a 1-Day Osaka Amazing Pass from Klook? S$35. Super worth it, I say!


          Sakuya Lumina Night Walk

          But wait, our Day 2 was not done yet.


          Sakuya Lumina Night Walk is a night walk (duh) experience blending enchanting sound and light into Osaka Castle Park. It is much like the Rainforest Lumina at the Singapore Zoo but only bigger and more colourful!



          The Osaka Castle grounds converts to dreamy whimsical landscape against a symphony of light and sound when night falls, and consists of a easy walk with various interactive light and sound installations dotting the trail.



          And to up the fun factor, there are plenty of interactive installations that the monkies thoroughly enjoyed.


          Okay okay, me too. 🤣

          You can pre-book tickets through Klook HERE.

          OSAKA DAY 3

          Day Trip to Nara

          A Nara day trip is perfect for everyone staying in Osaka because this cute small town is famous for one thing.

          DEER. Lots and lots of them!


          See what I mean?


          I suppose the deers in Nara aren't exactly the best kept secret because the deer are exactly why people will tell you that a day trip to Nara from Osaka is a must.

          And they are absolutely right.

          There's something magical about Nara, thanks to its plenty temples, shrines and beautiful gardens.

          Of course, its claim to fame is the cute deer which roam the streets - the entire stretch of Nara Park from downtown Nara up to the hills. The deer are free to pet and take selfies with, and you can even purchase crackers (10 for 150yen) to befriend them. But do note that some can get very persistent and I've seen some poking their noses into pockets! And please, they are seen as sacred messengers of the gods so don't smack them ok? 😅



          Before coming to Nara, I had the impression that the famed deer are in some kind of enclosure within a park but that is not the case at all - the deer are walking around the town freely, some even along the patways beside the main road... and they are not shy of people at all.


          Yes, your chances of snagging plenty of photos with a deer... or even getting photobombed by a deer here is about 100%. 😁


          There are plenty of old shrines to visit in Nara but let's face it, if you are travelling with kids like we were, the deer are always only going to be the main attraction in their eyes. That said, you should at least visit one shrine in Nara and that honour goes to the Tōdai-ji Temple.


          This famed temple was once the world’s largest wooden building and is one of Japan’s most famous temples. Founded in 745 by the Emperor Shomu, the vast temple at Todaiji was constructed as a symbol of imperial power, and took over 15 years to complete at great expense.


          One of the main highlight is the temple’s main hall, also known as the Big Buddha’s Hall which houses Japan’s largest Buddha bronze statues, at 15 metres tall!


          A definite must-see if you are in Nara. Entrance fee is 600 yen for adults and 300 yen for school children.

          We then spent the rest of the day in Nara playing with the deer and just plain chilling.


          Or if you prefer, you can even buy deer poop!!! Actually, they are just peanuts covered in chocolate. LOL.


          Getting to Nara
          We arrived in Nara from Osaka via the JR Kanjo-Yamatoji Line which departs from JR Osaka Station in 50 minutes. It was extremely convenient thanks to our JR West Kansai Pass that we had got from Klook. From JR Nara Station, it's a 20-min walk to Todai-ji Temple where you can see the deer along the way. If you prefer not to walk, there is the bus (210yen for adults & 110yen for kids).

          If you are thinking of getting the JR Pass, there are 5 different JR passes available for the Kansai region: 1 Day JR-West Kansai Rail Pass; 2 Day JR-West Kansai Rail Pass; 3 Day JR-West Kansai Rail Pass; 4 Day JR-West Kansai Rail Pass and the 5 Day JR Kansai WIDE Area Pass. The 1 - 4 Day passes can also be used on the Kyoto city subway and Keihan line in addition to the JR line.

          The JR West Kansai Pass is good for travelling to cities like Nara, Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Nara, Himeji, Wakayama, Shiga, Tsuruga and Iga-Ueno. So all you need to do is to decide how many days of the pass you should get. Being in possession of the JR West Rail Pass also allows you to travel on JR-run train in each city for without any additional charge including the Kansai Airport Express Haruka train so this is definitely the easiest and fastest way to explore Kansai region and an essential travel pass for Japan!

          Dotonburi

          Experiencing some of Osaka’s best attractions will not be complete without tasting its food, street food to be more specific. And there is no other place to find delicious street food than at Dotonburi.

          But first, let's take mandatory photo in front of the famed Glico man signboard. Complete with the pose of course!


          As you already know, Dotonbori is famous for its eye-catching signage and billboards - there's a giant pufferfish, an octopus, and the famed Kani Douraku crab.


          Osaka’s obsession with food is often summed up with the expression “kuidaore” which is often interpreted to mean “eat till you drop”! In fact, Dotonbori is said to be the best place in Osaka to experience this kuidaore-style extreme love of food. And whatever you do (or eat), you must definitely savour takoyaki which was invented in Osaka!


          OSAKA DAY 4

          Universal Studios Japan


          Now this certainly needs no introduction at all. And it's definitely a MUST-VISIT if you are holidaying in Osaka with the kids.


          Universal Studios Japan is a theme park with rides, attractions and performances based on world famous movies, and animations. From the 3D action ride at Minions Park to the exhilarating Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, be prepared to have one whole day of fun!!!




          And you know how much fun we had when the camera caught us doing this.


          Go ahead and laugh. 😂 I think the different expressions on each of our faces perfectly sum up our day at Universal Studios Japan - shocked, exhilarated & thrilled. 😆

          The Flying Dinosaur is a hanging roller-coaster ride that sits riders lying face down and the loops... oh my 天, I can't even describe the feeling. I can only say this is the MOST thrilling ride I've ever taken in my life (even though I did close my eyes during certain parts LOL). And to think I didn't even like roller-coasters before I had kids.


          If you have younger kids, I would strongly recommend heading to Universal Wonderland which is home to Snoopy, Hello Kitty and Sesame Street. There are enough rides here to keep them occupied for more than half a day, and a good portion of them are indoors!




          I will be sharing a separate post on Universal Studios Japan so do keep a lookout for it. All you need to know for now is the queues at the entrance ticket counters are insane so it definitely makes sense to purchase your tickets beforehand. I simply flashed my e-ticket on my phone purchased via Klook and we were in! We also had the Express 4 pass which gave us faster access to 4 of the more popular rides. Rides like The Flying Dinosaur had a queue time of 90 minutes so I would totally recommend it.


          OSAKA DAY 5

          Osaka Ninja Workshop


          When we first arrived at the location, the wifey remarked, "People go Japan to wear Kimono but I come Japan to become a Ninja." And that was how I ended up with a blade at my neck. 😂😂😂


          In all honesty, going to a Ninja workshop in Osaka was probably the furthest thing on my mind and I got to admit, it is just one of those things you think is going to be lame.

          But after learning how to walk stealthily like a Ninja, wield a katana, shoot a dart through a blowpipe and throw a shuriken, I have to say all of us had a wonderful time. Yes, including the two notoriously-difficult-to-please teens. AND THAT'S SAYING A LOT!








          Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan


          If you've heard of Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan before, it’s probably because of the huge whale shark.


          One of Japan’s most spectacular world- renowned aquariums, Kaiyukan is home to over 15 large tanks, each recreating a specific region of the Pacific Rim, taking visitors on a virtual tour of the Pacific Ocean. And yes, the aquarium is huge!



          What's interesting about the aquarium is its layout - we started at the top on level 8 and made our way down through the exhibits in a circular motion. And at the center of the spiral is the aquarium’s largest tank with many smaller tanks around its perimeter. The main tank is 9 metres deep and is where we spent more than just a few minutes transfixed on the many fishes and sharks.




          In addition, there is a wide variety of other animals like seals, sealions, penguins, crustaceans, amphibians and even a touch pool where kids can gently touch rays and small sharks.



          Great place to spend half a day there... and if you want, you can spend the other half of the day at the LEGOLAND Discovery Center located just next door! Again, remember to pre-book your tickets online through Klook to save time on queuing.

          Samurai Cafe Show


          If you are looking for something different to do in Osaka, then Samurai Cafe will be it. It's tough to explain exactly what the show is about - there isn't any need to understand Japanese as the skits are predominantly slapstick humour and requires a huge dose of audience participation.


          But man, the show is SUPER FUNNY. I'm not kidding when I say I laughed until I cried. I seriously cannot remember the last time I laughed so much... especially since someone is able to lift me up during one of the segments! 😂😂😂


          I have never laughed so much. The wifey has never laughed so much. The monkies have never laughed so much.

          So you can probably guess we absolutely recommend this show. 😆


          And that concludes our wonderful time in Osaka. I think we did well to fit as much activities we could into the 5 days we had in Osaka but as with most trips, I have a nagging feeling that there is so much more of the city to explore.


          Oh, and I have to give a final shout-out to this little buddy here - our pocket WiFi device from Klook. At a rental price of $2.90 per day, I think it is one of the cheapest travel WiFi device rental around! It allows up to 5 devices to be connected and covers the whole of Japan. For an additional small fee, you can even arrange it to be delivered to you one day before departure and it will be picked up from you one day after you arrive back in Singapore! Visit HERE for more information.


          All in all, a great trip with the family thanks to Klook. As usual, Klook's hassle-free e-tickets allowed us to skip the queues at every single attraction we visited. Booking through its website was seamless and fast. With open-dated tickets (like Universal Studios Japan) and a best-price guarantee, why not try booking through Klook for your next holiday? 😀


          Just in case you need the Osaka attractions links again:

          Isomaru Suisan
          Osaka Amazing Pass
          ICOCA IC Card
          Sakuya Lumina Night Walk:
          JR West Kansai Pass
          USJ 1-day Pass
          USJ Express 4 Pass
          Ninja Workshop
          Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan
          Samurai Cafe
          4G WiFi for Japan

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          Advertorial

          At today's age, there is simply no escaping from digital devices... or if you have older kids at home, the topic of  "When can I have my own phone?" invariably pops up more often than not.

          For my two boys, they have their own mobile phones when they entered Secondary One because they take the public transport back to home from school. Of course while convenient, having their own mobile phones also opens up a whole new world of issues.

          Issues like excessive usage, constant mobile gaming and busting their mobile data.


          Yes, that last issue is particularly prevalent... especially after doing a quick check with my friends. For some reasons, teens love to watch YouTube videos on the go. Add on the amount of data consumed through Instagram, music streaming and sending copious amount of photos (and videos) over WhatsApp, and I think most parents have been losing more than a few strands of hair whenever the mobile bill arrives.

          So what is there to be done for this group of  huge data guzzlers among the teens?

          First and foremost, education and laying down some ground rules.

          Like it or not, mobile data is now a want and not a need for most teenagers. So my take is if they want it, they should either be responsible for the usage or pay for it themselves.

          For me, I suggest the budgeting approach: Parents pay for a certain amount of data each month, the children track how much they have used, and then they pay for anything beyond that allotted amount.

          So how much data is enough? 2GB is enough for a start - good enough for WhatsApp among family and friends, scrolling through Instagram, navigating Maps and casual surfing on the browser.

          That will of course mean that watching videos using mobile data is a no-no which is great because it will teach teens the concept of delayed gratification - wait til they get home when there is WiFi. What I do with my teens is also to sit them down and identify the sources of data drain, teaching them to turn off any features on their phones that drain data automatically in the background.

          How much then, are you willing to pay for 2GB worth of data per month? $10, $15 or $20?

          HOW ABOUT $5???


          Wait what, $5 per month for 2GB of data... and with NO contract at that? Because seriously, what can $5 get you nowadays?

          2.5 items at Daiso.


          1 McDonald's value meal.


          Oh and here's a fave among the teens - 1 cup of brown sugar bubble milk tea.


          Or you can choose to get the 2GB monthly plan from Circles.Life at only $5!


          No contract. No gimmicks. No frills.

          The $5 plan from Circles.Life comes with 2GB data, 50 Mins Calls and 25 SMS per month. And the best part? Signing up for the plan is super easy and FAST! I signed via its website in the morning and got my SIM card delivered to my doorstep right that very evening. And yes, you can also transfer any non-Circles.Life number to this $5 plan.


          Download the Circles.Life app into the phone so that your child will be able to keep track of the data usage.

          The great thing is the plan does not automatically charge you when your child exceeds the data cap! Instead, the data will be cut off unless you top it up. NO MORE BILL SHOCKS, that's for sure!

          But in case your child needs extra data for a particular month, you can boost the plan at $8 for 1GB or $12 for 2GB, and even $5 for 30mins talktime or $10 for 200 mins talktime plus free incoming calls.

          And for that extar boost, you can even consider getting your child to pay for it from the monthly allowance. Good eh? 😂

          Parents will also be glad to know that there is an option to add Parental Control to the plan at $2.99 per month. Parental Control is a service that will protect the child from potentially harmful and dangerous content, or contact over the internet on your mobile service by blocking content that are categorized as Adult Content, Hate and Intolerance, as well as Weapons and Violence.


          So parents, if you are looking to hand your child a mobile phone and are thinking of which mobile plan to get, the Circles.Life $5 2GB plan is your best bet.

          2GB worth of data might not be the largest amount of data in the eyes of the child, but it ensures that the child will learn how to manage the monthly data consumption in an efficient manner. This will go a long way in instilling responsible mobile data usage and financing over time... and best of all, parents need not worry about being billed for extra data charges when the data limit is busted!

          So yes, I have a new found BFF now.


          To sign up or find out more about Circles.Life's $5 2GB plan, visit HERE.


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          It is incredible. It really is.

          9 years ago on this day, Ale came into this world and immediately charmed everyone around her.

          Maybe it's because she is the only granddaughter on one side of the family. Maybe it's because it is just her outgoing personality. Or maybe it is because both the wifey and I know that she is the last baby we will ever have.


          And surprise surprise, she did grow up so very fast.

          One day she was being swaddled and waiting to be discharged from the hospital to head home, and the next day she is already reasoning with me over her iPad usage time. 😂


          But yet somehow she is 9 years old.

          And some things have changed. She is taller, smarter, more talkative and independent then I could ever imagine. She knows how to make all kinds of slime, memorize the lyics of a gazillion songs, create animation music videos and - this is my favourite bit - take care of her younger cousins.

          I think the fact that ALL of your younger cousins consistently look for her and want to play with her is a testament of her cheerful and caring personality.


          But you know what, fathering a daughter is still a little strange for me. Because sometimes I just don’t know what to do with her. She has changed so much in such a short time, that some days I stare at her, watch her laugh, dance some silly moves about the house and just watch her do her thing - and wonder how all this incredible stuff happened.

          And I also wonder how I will handle all the incredible stuff that has yet to come. Because that will be both exciting and terrifying.


          You see, in another 9 years she will be 18 and that's a sobering thought.

          Things will undoubtedly change.

          The teenage years, secondary school, more friends and, gulp, dating. Of course, there will be plenty of ups and downs along the way, challenges to face and things to overcome. And she may not need me the way she does now.  But despite my dwindling demand, my job scope still remains.

          My job is to help her get from point A to point B... whether point B is her 10th birthday or graduation prom or marriage or motherhood. And I will always be right there if she needs me.


          And my princess, I don’t want to let you down.


          Enjoy the ride, Ale and have a great birthday!

          Love ya (even though Mummy still ranks higher than me 🤣)!


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          Get those cameras ready this year-end school holidays because the Disney Tsum Tsum are coming!

          Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

          From 16 Nov to 29 Dec 2019, fans can traverse the eight great rivers of the world with their favourite characters as Disney Tsum Tsum arrives in River Safari this school holiday season.

          The event features exclusive designs of Disney Tsum Tsum characters as they dress up in animal
          costumes for their adventure. Look out for them at eight unique photo points; from Mickey and Minnie Tsum dressed in giant panda costumes, to Tigger Tsum swapping out his stripes for spots as he dresses up as a jaguar.

          Snap your most creative photo and share it on Instagram with #DisneyTsumTsum #DisneyTsumTsumFestival #BandaiNamco #RiverSafari for a chance to win Disney Tsum Tsum merchandise.

          Take part in River Escapade Bingo and complete challenges to redeem exclusive Disney Tsum Tsum
          bag tags. Visit River Safari’s gift shop to bring home merchandise, featuring the Disney Tsum Tsum in animal costumes, such as plushies, tote bags, t-shirts and more.

          Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

          Activities include:

          River Escapade Bingo
          Date: 16 Nov – 29 Dec (Weekends and PH only)
          Time: 10am – 4pm
          Venue: Around the park

          Join Disney Tsum Tsum on their escapade and discover fun facts about our river friends. Complete any 2 lines on the River Escapade Bingo card and redeem an exclusive Disney Tsum Tsum bag tag*. Collect all 4 designs! *Limited quantities available, while stocks last.

          Disney Tsum Tsum Festival
          Date: 16 Nov – 29 Dec (Weekends and PH only)
          Time: 10am – 4pm
          Venue: Giant Panda Courtyard

          Be among the first to experience the newly launched Disney Tsum Tsum Festival and try your hand at 1 of 10 party games, only at River Safari.

          Disney Tsum Tsum Photo Moments
          Venue: Around the park

          Disney Tsum Tsum are on an exhilarating escapade around the park. Take pictures with them at 8 photo spots and learn how their adventure unfolds!

          Snap and Win Instagram Contest
          Contest Date: 16 Nov – 29 Dec 2019

          Share your most creative photo taken with the photo points and Disney Tsum Tsum Festival booth on Instagram and be 1 of the 3 winners to win exclusive Disney Tsum Tsum merchandise! Be sure to tag @wrs.ig and @bandainamcosea and include the hashtags #DisneyTsumTsum #DisneyTsumTsumFestival #BandaiNamco #RiverSafari

          Top Prize: Disney Tsum Tsum Festival bundle (worth up to $400)
          Second Prize: Exclusive Disney Tsum Tsum Cushion Set (worth up to $100)
          Third Prize: Exclusive Disney Tsum Tsum 3D Keychain Set (worth up to $60)

          The Disney Tsum Tsum will be descending into River Safari from 16 November 2019 to 29 December 2019.


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          Advertorial

          Flash cards are one of the classic study tools, and that's because they promote learning through active recall which is one of the practices through which our brains learn most effectively.

          When a child looks at the front side of a flashcard and think of the answer, the child is attempting to remember the concept from scratch rather than simply staring at the passage in the textbook. Active recall has been proven to create stronger neuron connections for that memory trace. And because flashcards can easily facilitate repetition, they are the best way to create multiple memory-enhancing recall events.

          Which is why word flash cards are hugely popular with parents with toddlers, who are just learning to read. But what if I told you that flash cards also exist in the form of PSLE science concepts and they have been largely effective for my Primary 3-level daughter even though she has only been using them for less than a month???


          Learnintt is a company founded in Singapore which develops teaching materials and interactive learning so that students can learn better, faster and easier. Their mission is simple - to promote a positive learning attitude and bring the “Learn through Play” concept to all students.

          And that is what the PSLE Science Flash Cards is all about.

          Made for Primary school students, the PSLE Science flashcards are based on the latest MOE syllabus and come in two sets: Lower Primary (P3 & P4) and Upper Primary (P5 & P6). Edited by ex-MOE Teachers to adhere to PSLE Marking System, the flashcards consist of all Science chapters from Primary 3 & 4 in the Lower Primary set and Primary 5 &6 in the Upper Primary Set. These include commonly-tested questions that are often found in tests and exams.


          And after using the Lower Primary set to help Ale to revise for her P3 year-end Science exam, I have seen the tremendous benefits that come with it:

          Easy Referencing System

          Let's face it, kids nowadays are a tough bunch to impress... especially when it comes to studying. Throwing them textbook after textbook and assessment book after assessment book won't cut it with them. In fact, it may turn them off even more and de-motivate them from revising.

          But that is not the case with the Science Flash Cards!

          Inspired by the rainbow cake, the stack of flash cards come colour-coded, with the content page sequencing out the various science chapters in different colours for easy reference.


          This makes it extremely convenient and easy for kids to just take out the particular chapter they want simply by looking for its colour code.

          Eye-catching Design

          Even though flash cards are effective, they also have a reputation as being one of the most boring ways to study. Not so with the Science Flash Cards.

          Every single flash card is in full colour, with pictures and words with the intention to capture the kids' attention so that they will continue to be engaged even after going through many Science chapters.


          Embrace Learning

          More importantly for kids - and this is what parents will love - the cards are designed to allow them to embrace and enjoy revising for Science.

          To prevent information overload, one card only has one question. The question is found on one side of the card, with the answer at the back.


          Kids can first go through the flash cards on their own, reading the questions on the front and then looking at the answers at the back. This process is clear and user-friendly on the brain and for one, it is definitely far more interesting than just memorizing from a study guide!


          This allows the breakdown of complex concepts into multiple simple questions - a divide and conquer strategy that will enhance the active recall ability in kids.

          Know the Keywords to Answer

          If you have a child taking the Science exam, you will know that the answering system is pretty rigid. If you miss out certain keywords in the answer, you will not be accorded the full marks or worse, fail to score any. Personally, I have my own robust view about that but that is a story for another day. For now though, the task at hand is to equip our kids with the right answering skills to tackle the Science exam and the flash cards are a huge lifesaver in that aspect.

          Each card also comes with tips with essential keywords that the child must use in the answer. This is extremely important especially for Booklet B which the open-ended questions are found. And by revising these keywords, the child is also revising Science core concepts for Booklet A (MCQ) at the same time.


          See the number at the top corner of the card? This shows the number of points the question carry. Not only does it tell the child how many points to include in the answer so as to score the full mark, it also helps to track of the progress, much like a report book.


          Using Mnemonic Devices to Create Mental Connections

          A mnemonic device is anything that helps you build an association between two pieces of information in your mind. Like the classic mnemonic, ROYGBIV – the 'Roger Of York Gained Battle In Vain' acronym that helps you remember the order of the colors in the rainbow. 

          So the trick is the weirder and wackier your associations are, the more easily you’ll remember them. Because that is how our brain is adapted to remember things that are out of the ordinary.

          And this is what set the Science Flash Card apart from other learning tools.


          There is nothing quite like capturing the attention of a primary school child with names like Ed She-ran. 😂 Well, obviously the real name cannot be used for copyright reasons but you get the idea, no?

          The entire stack of flash cards are filled with both FUN and LOCAL names (like Ms Kaya Toast, Milo Dinosaur and Laksa Aunty) to help the child in content retention because that is precisely what mnemonic devices do.


           And yes, there is even the popular DAB in one ofthe question.


          The brain definitely remembers fun and interesting content for a longer time and I had a first-hand experience when I saw Ale going through the flash cards on her own... all because she wanted to suss out all the interesting names in the questions! 😆

          Portable & Convenient

          Forget about lugging the Science textbook and assessment books everywhere you go. The Science Flash Cards come in a handy A5-size which means they are be taken almost anywhere and everywhere!


          For our recent trip to Tainan which came before Ale's Science paper, I brought the flash cards along with us and we even did a quick revision on the plane! 😁


          Even Ayd couldn't resist joining in too! LOL.

          Latest MOE Syllabus

          Are the flash cards in tune with the MOE syllabus? I think this question should weigh heavily on parents' minds.

          Yes, they are. In fact, the cards are edited by ex-MOE Teachers so as to adhere to PSLE Marking System. Besides the Lower Primary set, the Science Flash Cards also come in an Upper Primary Set for Primary 5 and 6 students.


          And you know it is proven to be effective when 11 primary schools in Singapore have already ordered the Science Flashcards to be used in the classrooms!


          SO... what is the cost?

          Extremely affordable, in my opinion.

          The Lower Primary set costs $31.50 while the Upper Primary set costs $36.50, which is probably the cost of 2 or 3 assessment books or study guides. Plus there is a FREEBIE too - all parents who purchase the Science Flashcards will also recieve a soft copy of a Science Spelling List, which will be extremely useful so that the child will not lose marks by mis-spelling words!

          And from what I observed from Ale after using the flash cards for about one month, THERE IS A HIGE DIFFERENCE.


          Ale was certainly more motivated to do her Science revision before her exam paper. Before I had the flash cards, getting her to memorize science concepts and keywords from the guidebook was a chore. Not to mention it was threatening my sanity.

          With the flash cards, she volunteers (yes, VOLUNTEERS) to go through one chapter of flash cards daily so that the wifey or I can test her in the evening when we return from work.

          Of course, the most tangible outcome of using the Science Flashcards for a month is her year-end Science paper result. And even though the wifey and I focus primarily on effort rather than grades, I am happy to report that she bettered her mid-year exam score by more than 6%! That's pretty impressive, considering she was struggling to remember core Science concepts before that. I guess Ed She-ran and Mr. Bojio had a hand in that then. 😂

          And if that's not effective, I don't know what is.


          To order the Science Flashcards, visit HERE.



          GIVEAWAY

          Thanks to Learnintt, I have 5 sets of Primary Science Flashcards to give away! Each set consists of the Lower and Upper Primary Science Flashcards

          To participate, all you have to do is the following:

          1. LIKE Learning in Transit's Facebook page HERE.
          2. Tell me why you wish to win the flashcards. Leave your comment either in the corresponding Facebook post HERE or in this blog post.


          BONUS CHANCE: INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING!

          SHARE this blog post of the giveaway on Facebook for a BONUS chance! Remember to set your profile to public so that I can see the shared post.

          Giveaway ends on 12 November 2019, 2359 hours.

          GOOD LUCK! 😊




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          Sponsored Post

          Let's face it, travel with kids is not easy. And you know what's tougher than that? Travelling with teens! Say what??? Yes, it's true.

          Of course there’s less poop to deal with, less crying to manage and definitely less stuff to lug along. But replace all those with the rolling eyes, shrugging shoulder, shuffling feet and monosyllabic answers, and I assure you that travelling with them can be more challenging indeed.

          What? Another photo? Oh. My. Gawd. Stop. It. Pa. No. Seriously. Stop. It. Enough.

          That's usually the soundtrack playing during our travels. 😅

          Or this.

          Huh? This place? So. Boring. No. Fun. Are. We. Done. Yet. Got WiFi?

          But despite all that, I have learnt that traveling with my teens can be fun and fruitful. Because teens are smart. They know things, despite us parents assuming otherwise. There are a lot of times when we were overseas, both Ash and Ayd started sharing some stuff about the attractions that they found out online - stuff that both the wifey and I do not even know. And when they share those things, I find that not only do I learn, but it's a form of communication as well.


          So how do you enjoy travelling with teens?

          The most important thing to do is to
          INVOLVE THEM IN THE TRAVEL PLANNING.

          While parents usually choose the holiday destination, they must take the personalities and preferences of their children into acount. And once the destination has been decided, seek input from the kids on things they might like to do and see while there.

          For our year-end holiday, I asked the monkies where they would like to head to and they unisonly proclaimed somewhere where there's snow!

          I shorlisted a few countries and the monkies eventually picked Sweden or more specifically, Stockholm, because it's the land of Minecraft, Spotify and meatballs. See what I mean about different perspectives between adults and children? If the wifey picked Sweden, it will have to be for H&M or IKEA while for me, it will have to be the ABBA museum. 😂😂😂

          Anyway, our destination was set and it was time to plan for the activities. Since the monkies were super enthusiastic about our upcoming trip, I gleefully delegated the task of planning for 3 days' worth of activities to them.

          And they certainly rose up to the challenge.

          Well, all thanks to Klook.

          We have been booking our activities through Klook since our trip to Macau last August and it conitnued with our trip to Kaohsiung and Kenting at the end of last year. We also had a blast with Klook in Osaka in September this year so when we began planning for our Stockholm trip, we naturally zoomed to Klook's website first.


          The thing about booking through Klook is not only does it offer travellers a seamless way to discover and book attractions, tours, local transportation, best foods and must-eats, and unique experiences around the world, the booking process is seamless and safe... and comes with a best price guarantee.

          Best of all - and this is my fave - we have skipped the queue EVERY SINGLE TIME at every attraction that we have booked through Klook because the e-tickets are stored in my smartphone and I just have to scan it at the entrance. Hassle-free!

          So with that, the monkies started putting together an itinerary.


          Stockholm has a perfect mix of indoor and outdoor activities which is great for families and especially if you are visiting during Winter. And it is popular among families for good reason - with its vast open spaces for kids to run around and a casual stroll right by the royal palace to a wealth of museums as well as Skansen (an open-air museum that features a zoo and an aquarium).

          And Klook certainly have no short of activities to choose from.


          After a few days of mulling and discussing, the monkies settled on a few attractions to visit:

          Skansen Open Air Museum
          Skansen Aquarium
          Vasa Museum
          Nobel Prize Museum
          Royal Palace (at the request of the wifey 🤣)
          Tom Tits Experiment (yes, the name caught the attention of the monkies for sure! And it's a science museum for kids in case you are wondering.)


          And in between all the planning, we learnt more about our destination together. Because like I mentioned before, kids are brilliant and their brains are sponges, ready to soak up information and experiences. And being informed about our travel destination will make our trip much more enjoyable.



          Designate a day or time that’s all theirs

          But even after all that, I have deliberately kept one day completely free. There will be one day in Stockholm where there are no plans and no attractions to visit. We might still end up visiting an attraction or two but the idea is to let the monkies - the boys specifically - decide what to do on that day, to take ownership over the outcome of our trip for that one day.


          I admit, I am a little apprehensive of that but let's just see how that turns out. You can always follow us on my Instagram to see what happens! 😆

          At the end of the day, in order for everyone to have the best family trip possible, it’s important for everyone to be involved in the entire process. Planning is such a fundamental aspect to travel and involving kids in that process will make your trip more enjoyable and memorable for the whole family.

          Which is precisely what Klook is encouraging for this year-end travel holiday period.

          With Klook's many activities spread across different countries, it is easy to build your own perfect holiday and as the monkies have shown, it is easy even for the kids!

          And there's a bonus too if you are currently planning for that year-end trip.


          Save up to $100 with the discount codes above when you book through Klook. Even better if you have a DBS Woman's Card, because you get to enjoy an additional $18 off Klook activities with a minimum $180 spend! More details HERE.


          So to all parents out there who worry about travelling with their kids, just do it. And keep doing it! One day, they will turn into awesome sidekicks who pack and lug their own luggage, plan the itinerary, take the lead in navigating, snap splendid selfies... and the one special memory.


          Cheers to more exploring and travelling with your kids, tweens and teens!

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