Mummy Mondays – Lego Brick Zone

IMG_4612image

Lego Brick Zone Preview event – Watergardens Town Centre Monday 23rd June – Sunday 13th July, 2014

 It was a bit of a hard gig trying to get up Sunday morning after an intense but fun Saturday night (see here) but it was worth it. The hubby, Toddler D and I made it to the preview event of the Lego Brick Zone at Watergardens ready for this year’s winter school holidays. Daniel excitedly got straight into some Lego building after spotting the colourful Lego Brick zone near Boost Juice.

We started our Lego morning off with some Spanish coffee (thank you Watergardens and Chocolateria San Churros!) and a tour with the officially certified Lego master builder, Ryan McNaught. The Brickman himself took us through a Lego treasure around the centre telling us stories of his Lego building adventures and interesting facts about his work displayed at Watergardens.

 IMG_4616Lego Love BoatIt took Ryan 6 months to complete The Love Boat (an ’80’s tv show set on a cruise ship) and with a cross section open to reveal tiny little rooms and compartments of the ship, Ryan has included 6 movie references within his labour of love (see if you can spot them!). Ryan spent 3 nights sitting in front of his tv building all the beds and bunk beds to furnish the cabins. This model is built solely with Lego blocks, with no glue being used to hold everything together. The Love Boat breaks up into 13 different sections so it is able to be transported around. 

IMG_4621Lego ElvisWith a 100,000 pieces of Lego, Ryan built this incredible model of “The Elvis” in under a month. This $25,000 model of the Erickson S-64 Air Crane famous for assisting in fighting fires here in Australia is strengthened with steel and is designed to be motorised.
IMG_4630Lego Opera HouseIMG_4634This Sydney Opera House model was one of my faves of the day due to fact that Ryan was able to construct the compound curves of the Opera House so well, with the help of an overseas co-worker. I also liked all the tiny little details from the grand piano concert to the wedding couple – so cute! This model is broken up into two sections in order to be able to be transported and is made from around 75,000 Lego bricks and 300 hours of work.
IMG_4641Lego Apollo 11Our final stop was at the enormous model of the Apollo 11 (the spaceflight with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin). 5.7 metres high and constructed from around 120,000 Ryan showed us some panels that were able to be opened and explained that this model is also designed to sue dry ice in order to add a dramatic launching effect 🙂 

Ryan McNaught is one of only 13 certified Lego professionals and has travelled the world with his creations even having works commissioned by Myer and David Jones. Imagine getting paid to make Lego models! Originally from the corporate world, Ryan is married with twins and loves making models that people can be inspired by and interact with. Daniel was so impressed with the huge Lego treasures in the shopping centre that when we got back to the Lego Brick Zone he hurriedly started trying to put Lego pieces together – the bigger Duplo ones of course.


20140623-064500.jpg

We were also treated to a family friendly viewing of The Lego Movie which I had not seen before and we had such a great time, we were singing “everything is awesome” the whole ride home lol! If you’re looking for something to do with the kids (big and small) over the next few weeks make sure you check out Ryan’s labours of love displayed at Watergardens Shopping Centre. Maybe you’ll be inspired to do what you love…you never know where it can take you.


Legocollage

Pinoy Fridays – Saturday night out with Filipino artists Vhong & Osang

Vhong ConcertIMG_4518IMG_4568

 Saturday night with Vhong and Osang
Laugh Out Loud Melbourne concert, 21st June 2014, Williamstown Town Hall by Liz Honey Productions

Last night we got our “chickboy” on at the Laugh Out Loud concert at the Williamstown Town Hall here in Melbourne. I used to watch Vhong and Spencer in the Philippine dance crew Streetboys. Along with the Maneouvers, Vhong and the Streetboys used to be my weekly dance fix on a Filipino show called ASAP. There was a time before Keone and Mari/Shaun Evaristo/Rewind were easily found on Youtube. There was a time when choreography was not so readily available to watch and learn. There was a time when there were no competitions around like Step Up or AHC that we could be a part of. There was a time when I used to ask mum and papa to drive to the local Filipino store where we would hire the weekly ASAP episode video for $2 and grab some Filipino treats (chicharon, ensamada, etc) while we were there – so long ago, circa 1995! With no internet, YouTube or even local dance studios to learn urban choreograophy, I was a devoted fan of ASAP’s musical numbers even getting some of my non-Filipino high school friends in on the action lol!

Anyways, back to present time where we do have YouTube and are fortunate enough to have the opportunity to perform at some high quality competitions and shows, some friends and I watched videos sent to us to learn Vhong’s numbers ready for soundcheck a couple of hours before his show. Hard work, lots of laughs and focus on the task at hand had us ready for a night of back up dancing fun.

– Evolution of Dance (ASAP 2009)
Chickboy (2007 album)
– Hataw medley
Totoy Bibbo (2004 album)

Tita Liza’s next concert will be the one and only Gary Valenciano on July 12th at the National Theatre in St Kilda. Click here for more info.

Vhong photoboothingTime out at rehearsals photobombing Liza’s photobooth! #weirdofaces

IMG_4571 IMG_4470Always such a pleasure working with these dancers: Justin, Matt, Liza, Lowell and Chris
IMG_4442Interview with Tristan from Channel 31
IMG_5335Backstage with Mr Suave
IMG_4580

Vhong collage 2Chillin out in our room meant selfie time trying to stay calm and collected before having to perform
Vhong collage 3IMG_4487IMG_4493IMG_4546“O, ang galing ang galing ko sumayaw. Ang galing ko gumalaw, galing ko sumayaw. Galing ko gumalaw ang galing ko sumayaw. Bibong-bibo gumalaw”

IMG_4552IMG_4514 IMG_4597 IMG_4591Tita Liza – Liz Honey Promotions and Entertainment
IMG_4601Vhong Collage 1
IMG_4577Family fun with my cousins Arielle and JV 😀
Vhong collage selfie
Love working with Liza! – so talented and easy to work with putting a show together with chorey and costumes and all! xx
IMG_4603

Dinosaur Adventures with Daniel


Dinosaur AdventuresDinosaur high

IMG_4347
Dinosaur Adventures, Gate 20 Caulfield Racecourse
Open now until July 20, 2014

Last night I drove straight from work, picked up Toddler D and headed excitedly to Caulfield Racecourse for a dinosaur adventure. Greeted with a grand tent and loud roars we entered this year’s must-see kids holiday event with big smiles on our faces; and when we got inside there were smiles and wide-eyed kids and parents exploring the well laid-out dinosaur land. After a jam-packed week at work, it was so nice to be able to spend some quality time with Daniel seeing his eyes light up with both amazement and a little fear!

Dinosaur wooden

 We were kept occupied for hours with:
– 3D dinosaur making
– sandpit digging
– fossil digging
– jumping castles
– games and displays
and more IMG_4353IMG_4354IMG_4362

As we rushed straight from work to see the dinosaurs, we were happy to see food and drinks for sale, ATM’s readily available and easy access to clean bathrooms. Staff were friendly and we also hung out with the Flinstones! 🙂 With all this going on the true stars of the night were the giant, moving and roaring dinosaurs – with facts about each one accompanying the displays the event was not only great fun, but also educational. Make sure you get in and book your ticketshere before all the sessions sell out!

IMG_4361IMG_4377

Dinosaur story time proved popular with the older kids and they were seated quietly listening to the ranger absorbing interesting stories and facts about these prehistoric giants. There were also guided tours of the arena and couple with effective lighting, wind and sounds all made for a fabulous Friday night out with our little one.

IMG_4413IMG_4356IMG_4379IMG_4386IMG_4387IMG_4409
IMG_4418IMG_4424Some happy Urban Ma comp winners 🙂

IMG_4427Dinosaur montageCan’t pass up a photo opp!

Dinosaur Daniel sandWhat is up with kids and sand!?

IMG_4375Daniel was happy to see Fred and Barney Flinstone – maybe because they didn’t have as big, sharp teeth as all the other characters he’d been seeing all night!

IMG_4360
IMG_4363 IMG_4369The Urban Ma at Dinosaur Adventures

Mummy Mondays – 19 month update


Daniel and the kangaroo Daniel & the Delorean

My 19 month old cutie patootie!

19 months old! – where did the time go? I know you probably always hear parents say that but it’s so true! Just yesterday it felt like I was taking Baby D (ok I gotta find a new name for him since he’s not a baby anymore) to the obstetrician for our 6 week check up and now he’s almost 2!! I originally started writing his updates and milestones in a little notebook with a cross-stitched bear I stuck on the front but I think I’ll just post them up here from now on as it’s easier to upload photos than to print them out and scrapbook them into a journal.

Favourite toys/games: Baby D is obsessed with cars, basketballs, soccer balls, bouncy balls, motorbikes and trains at the moment. Thomas is the first toy he’s actually held for hours without letting go. It’s so cute to watch him concentrate so much pushing Thomas around and around his wooden track (we bought him a starter pack from My Kids Emporium, see post here). He also got a little excited about the Delorean he got to ride on set at the video shoot for the 2014 Australian Dance Crew Championship’s showreel (post on that will be up this week). Daniel loves getting chased while someone is holding him and squeals with laughter at the thought of getting caught. D-man loves watching Cars and even knows some of the lines before Lightning McQueen says them!

Favourite food: Everything at the moment! Especially cheese and all different Filipino ulams! There is nothing really that D-train doesn’t like except for olives – but at dinner tonight he actually ate one and didn’t spit it out like the first time he had it. Rice, stews, fruits, ice cream, bread, yoghurt, D-man will eat the lot! It’s so much easier to go out with him as I no longer have to pack sterilised, pureed baby food like I had to do several months ago.

Sleeping: Cutie patootie is still co-sleeping with us in a huge king size bed and especially with these winter nights, it so nice snuggling up next to him. We will start though, to re-arrange his room a little to try and get him sleeping in there by removing the cot and setting up a single mattress on the floor like this cute room I found on Instagram via @melbgirlandbaby.Room Inspo

Activities: Daniel san has been out and about enjoying the crisp outdoors on our trip to Ballarat WildLife Park. He loved the sun and the rides at the Gold Coast and he even stared in awe at the paintings and musicians at NGV’s 2014 autumn/winter feature – The Italian Masterpieces. Toddler D loves going to Ikea and playing with the wooden kitchen and all the puzzle toys and spends ages on the train set table at the toys stores. Last term we went to Mini Maestros and we might go back again next term – Daniel loves music and dancing so I think it’ll fun for him!

Potty Training: We haven’t started strict potty training with the little guy but he will tell us when he wants to do a poo..uhhh most of the time! We bought him a little training toilet seat from Toys R’ Us with little ducks on it to make life easier. What age do toddler’s normally stop using nappies?

Talking: D-star is such a little chatterbox! – he’s gone from joining 2 syllable words to now 3 syllables and even joining words together to make sentences like “Hello Daddy” and some other phrases in Tagalog. He loves his aunty and follows her when she tells him to demonstrate different emotions like laughing and crying – maybe he’ll be a little actor when he grows up? 🙂
Teeth: Toddler D has been teething lately with both his canines cutting through over the weekend and even one of his first molars showing. No wonder he’s had a runny nose and been very sooky lately 😦 No sleep for him or us!

It’s such a fun time for our little man and he is constantly enthralled by the world around him. Everyday there is always something new that he gets excited about, it’s so cute!! Btw, did any of those nicknames above sound catchy to you? How did you get your nickname or come up with one for your friends, or kids?

Hope you’ve had a great start to the week!

Daniel & the boysDaniel at Ikea Daniel giggling Daniel in GC Daniel in QLD IMG_4883

IMG_5073 IMG_5270 IMG_5234IMG_4648

In Melbourne city with Daniel


IMG_5011IMG_5014

 

My Kids Emporium – Emporium Melbourne
Entrances at both Lonsdale and Little Bourke streets

A couple of weeks ago, Daniel and I enjoyed a beautiful autumn Thursday in the city attending the launch of MyKids Emporium and visiting lola on Lygon street. On level 4 of the world-class Emporium shopping precinct we were treated to a tour of the dedicated kids space covering approximately seven thousand square metres. There was also a sweetly decorated candy bar, delicious catering by Blakes Feast, the most talented balloon man I have ever seen (he made a Despicable Me minion backpack!) and such friendly staff all around. With a variety of concept areas, Baby D was entertained for hours while I checked out the high quality brands in the kids clothing sections. Baby D was in awe – he was so amazed and spent the whole morning playing with the cars and trains (if only there were seats for us adults lol!).  Some of the features currently on show at MyKids Emproium are:

– Thomas The Tank Engine Station (we ended up buying Daniel his first ever wooden Thomas train set)
– Barbie Boutique
– Little Tikes Driving Track (your little one can even get their own little license!)
– the action heroes area
– Lego (Daniel loved even just staring at the Lego creations through the display cases!)
– there was also Sands Alive available for demo (the parents loved it as much as the kids – no mess, encourages creativity and it was so therapeutic just holding it in my hands!)

Toy demonstrations, live performance (today it’s The Wiggles!! 14/06/14) and activity days will ensure this kids space is an exciting place to visit all year around for both kids and the parentals!

 

IMG_4998IMG_4967IMG_4979
IMG_4968



IMG_499520140613-002601.jpgkids collage

20140613-002538.jpg 20140613-002512.jpg 20140613-002330.jpg 20140613-002423.jpg

Couldn’t get enough of Thomas20140613-002242.jpg

Baby was not interested at all in this Barbie Boutique session but mummy thought it was a great photo opp 🙂
IMG_5004IMG_5029

Some cool kids clothing items, it’s not all toys on Level 4! – love those tanned coloured shoes!
IMG_5008IMG_5007

How cool is this Luna Park Lego scene!
IMG_5003Adam from MyerMyer’s EGM of Merchandise, Adam, and my lovely fellow bloggers Kate of MeeToo and Fiona of Oh Gorgeous Baby

We were told the vision of MyKids Emporium is to be the destination that kids want to visit as soon as they wake up on a Saturday morning and we’ve already been back a few times! But that’s for another post! (more playtime for Daniel and the food court is so good)

 

After I was able to pry Daniel away from the train set, we headed down to Lygon for lunch at Tank Fish and Chippery with lola! We ordered the “old school fish and chips” Tank pack and it was fresh, crisp and so tasty with the perfect amount of salt and pepper. We enjoyed it in the park while Daniel immersed himself in fallen autumn leaves.

 

IMG_5015
Grateful. Happy. Exhausted. Refreshed. Loved. Full. Satisfied. Proud. Thankful.

Shall We Dance – The King and I in Melbourne


The King and IThe Urban Ma The King and I

Rodger’s and Hammerstein’s The Kind and I
Princess Theatre Melbourne June – August 2014 

After a long and productive day in the office, the Princess Theatre was my after-work destination (after a stop at Shanghai Street for dumplings of course!). We were invited to see MElbourne’s latest musical offering, the enchanting, King and I. I’d only ever seen the 1956 classic on video so I was super excited to see Jason Scott Lee play Yul Brynner’s strict but passionate character, the King of Siam.

Mesmerising costumes, beautiful music and an amazingly talented cast brought the love story to life with crowd favourites “Getting to Know You” and “Shall We Dance”. The unforgettable melodies brought back childhood memories of waltzing around the lounge room extremely fast in an attempt to mimic the scene.

With the official opening night in Melbourne tonight and new seats released yesterday, I think I just might be seeing you in the audience for another memorable night at the theatre. What is your favourite musical you watched as a child?


Princess Theatre MelbourneThe Urban Ma at the Princess Theatre

Ravishingly detailed props and costumes

etc etc etc The Urban Ma cocktails

 Themed cocktails! Etcetera, Etcetera, Etcetera 🙂

IMG_4310

During intermission we stumbled across the cutest little grocer/cafe – Spring Street Grocer. Authentic European items with a dcheese cellar and late night coffee.

IMG_4309 IMG_4306IMG_4308 IMG_4304the king and i cast

 The charismatic Jason Scott Lee was such a sweetheart spending time signing autographs and taking pictures with his fans.

The Urban Ma with Jason Scott Lee

You, you enchant me…

Half asleep. Half awake. Captivated by this.

“Latch (Acoustic)”
Disclosure feat. Sam Smith

You lift my heart up when the rest of me is down
You, you enchant me even when you’re not around
If there are boundaries, I will try to knock them down
I’m latching on, babe, now I know what I have found

I feel we’re close enough
Could I lock in your love?
I feel we’re close enough
Could I lock in your love?

Now I’ve got you in my space
I won’t let go of you
Got you shackled in my embrace
I’m latching on to you

I’m so en-captured, got me wrapped up in your touch
Feel so enamored, hold me tight within your clutch
How do you do it, got me losing every breath
Why did you kiss me to make my heart beat out my chest?

I feel we’re close enough
Could I lock in your love?
I feel we’re close enough
Could I lock in your love?

Now I’ve got you in my space
I won’t let go of you
Got you shackled in my embrace
I’m latching on to you

Now I’ve got you in my space
I won’t let go of you
Got you shackled in my embrace
I’m latching on to you

I’m latching on to you

In love with such a heavenly voice, moving lyrics and the acoustic-ness of it all after a stimulating Monday of “critical thinking” 🙂 The Abilene Paradox. Mindmaps. Cause and effect. Solution-finding. Groupthink. A whale explosion in Oregon. A380. Challenger. Six Thinking Hats. Dotmocracy. Low carb lunch. Meeting minutes. Chia seed and mango pudding. Pat Flynn. SPLAT. EP Transformers. Consultation. Disney. Brave. Hypnagogia. Edison’s ball bearings. And finally…listening to Sam Smith – a perfect way to end the night.