Masak Masak 2016

Are we among the few who only got to visit the National Museum’s Masak Masak at the last moment, before school reopened? I was browsing my FB feed and it seemed like many of my mommy friends have already visited.

We made our way down on the last Thursday of the June holidays. It seems almost like a yearly ‘must-visit’ during the Children’s Season and this year is no exception. This year is our third year of Masak Masak. I think there were fewer interactive installations but it’s the year I enjoyed the most, mainly because Faith was at an age when she could explore the stations on her own and be engaged by them.

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Mandatory shot

It’s free admission and the museum opens from 10am so as you would have guessed, we were there at 10am. There weren’t a lot of people then which was great = less chance of queuing to play at the different stations.

The first area that attracted Faith was this space where the kids could colour. I don’t think this is part of Masak Masak but the girl and her older friend spent 20 minutes on it. Maybe she’s into colouring, that’s why.

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Remember Snake & Ladder? I bought one set of this board game for Faith to play at home and when she saw this setup at Let’s Play!, she was excited. According to the website, this space is supposed to depict a magical forest but I couldn’t tell. Hah.

I love the slides though. Whee!! There is supposed to be another board game called Ludo but I didn’t recognise it or perhaps it’s because I don’t know what Ludo is. #ihavenochildhood. I do think board games are good forms of entertainment for the kids. They really do “encourage patience and promote the development of social, communication and motor skills, and impart important life lessons such as overcoming challenges as well as victory and loss.” [Source]

Clumsy Dumpty on the Wall is an interactive installation inspired by the familiar shape sorter play toy that has encouraged bonding and teamwork among generations of children in the past and present.Faith was really into this and concentrated so hard on finding the shapes. But I’m not sure if the older kids would find this installation interesting?

I would think that the older ones would find Funcycling fun (for the lack of words). There is an age limit and height restriction so our friend couldn’t join in the activity.

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No worries! Enter Le Bestiaire which is about an imaginary zoo of unexpected, abstract and hyper-realistic animals. For a minimal donation of $2, one could go into the ‘studio’ and design his/her own costume.

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What a simple but lovely space!

Just look at how engrossed she was and I’m still considering if I should send her to art class because every other day she would ask, “Are we going to the art class?”

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So, yea. This year seems to have fewer stuff but it was enjoyable nonetheless. It’s until 31 July so make your way down if you haven’t done so.

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Chinese and Japanese Garden

This June holiday, I hope to bring Faith out to enjoy as many outdoor activities as possible. I would love to get her to explore the environment that she is in so that she could stay inquisitive and learn along the way; I just hope I have the patience to share with her! Building sweet memories, that’s part of the plan too. Initially, the family had wanted to go on a trip to Taiwan but that did not materialise in the end. No worries, we will tour our city-state instead!

This morning, we decided to visit the Chinese and Japanese Garden located at Jurong East. I had been there when I was a kid myself and another time when I was participating in a run while the hubs has not visited these gardens. It would be a good change from the usual gardens that we have visited.

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We reached the Chinese Garden at around 8am as we knew that it would be really killing to stroll in the heat if we had arrived later. We are also early risers so this timing is actually good for us. We had wanted to get Faith to skate-scoot in the garden but were told that that is not allowed. ;(

20150601_082309I’m rather impressed by the interior. It is well-kept and scenic and Faith was really engaged by the things that she saw along the way.

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My only complaint? The heat. But there is nothing we can do about it but to bear with it. Thankfully, the little girl didn’t complain at all.

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Bringing the little one to be in the outdoor as much as possible is something that I would do intentionally. Personally, I’m not one who loves to stay indoors because I believe she could learn more and be stimulated about the environment when she is in the outdoors. Getting her to appreciate nature is something I’m very mindful of and we could talk about God’s creations as we explore. Also, I don’t like her to be sheltered in air-conditioned areas for too long. It’s just not healthy.

20150601_083841The dragon girl with her Papa

20150601_083633And she willingly posed for us.
“Ouch! i’m bitten by the snake!”

IMG-20150601-WA0025We reached the Japanese Garden as we crossed the connecting bridge. There was this area where we saw a girl feed the fish and at that moment, I regretted not bringing some stale bread! Faith was really interested in feeding them but well, we didn’t have any food for them!

20150601_085132Beautifully sculpted plants. So zen…

20150601_085433She spotted squirrels and stayed in this spot for quite a while.
“Squirrels, where are you? Come down…NOW!”

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After walking for an hour, the little one was visibly tired and as she descended from a flight of stairs, she lost her balance and fell down, sustaining bruises and scratches on her right hand and face. Oh, poor girl. My heart ached for her but I have been trained to remain calm because if I had responded in panic, she would too. It must have hurt and she cried out. But thankfully, she was all calm after a minute. I really do think she has a high threshold of pain after all those episodes of falling. 😉

20150601_090740All is well again. No big deal right?

20150601_090817Manja queen.

We departed from the gardens in 2 hours’ time. It was a nice walk, really but I wish that the weather can be cooler. Of course, one shouldn’t compare these gardens with the actual ones in China and Japan. It’s a far cry to be honest but still, these gardens are a refreshing change as compared to the ones in our neighbourhood.

It would be good to pack some snacks along the way and definitely refreshing drinks are essential!

Chinese and Japanese Garden
Main Garden : 6am – 11pm (daily)
Bonsai Garden & Garden of Abundance: 9am – 6pm (daily)
Admission: Admission to main garden free.
Location: 1 Chinese Garden Singapore 619795