Saturday, March 26, 2011

Saturday morning's mission

This morning I told Aelig that we have a mission to accomplish: getting daddy a pain au chocolat (chocolate bread).

She was elated with the idea and was thrilled to go out.

Playing along the way to the bakery.

Got home, when I asked her to present the bread to daddy, she decided that she would keep both the chocolate bread and bottereaux for herself despite daddy's protest.

Didn't know how daddy manage to get the bottereaux, but it seems that he is trying to trade the bottereaux with the chocolate bread.

No, Aelig didn't want to exchange her chocolate bread, daddy took it from her.

Aelig's way of protesting: laying down on the floor and destroying daddy's internet connection. Give me back my chocolate bread!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

15th month

Note: This post was started on 24 March and I only completed it on 3 Apr. Lazy :-)

A very naughty girl! She hid daddy's remote control and he was looking for it like crazy. We didn't realize she could actually put something in a drawer and closed the drawer later.

Eating habits:

A picky eater. She is no longer the baby who accepted everything. Feeding her was painful and she masters the art of pushing / throwing food on the floor. It happened many times, I purposely cooked her porridge with pork/chicken/fish/vegetables, she would eat one bite and refused the rest.

A friend feeding her with hand. She accepted it, ate the rice and chicken. My friend was a bit scared as some kids bite her when being fed this way.

Expressions and comprehension

Her way of protesting.

She knows how to show her anger.

During our Malaysia trip, we discovered that she actually understands us. When asked where was her doudou (her favorite toy), she looked around and came back with it. Now she nods her head or shakes her head when I ask if she wants something.

These days she came to us crying when she poops. Her babysitter said she is constipated so we should stop feeding her rice. I don't know, maybe she is ready for potty training.


She was walking a lot in Malaysia so we decided to do the same here. Hubby walks her to the sitter sometimes. Of course it takes longer time as she is curious about everything. See how she peeks into people's garden.

We let her train on climbing up and down the stairs. At the beginning she was excited and decided to climb up to our floor at level 4 alone. Now she is lazy, when we ask her to climb up alone, she protests and wants us to take her in our arms.

Hubby went for regional vote and we discovered a nice place for her to play with her cart. She has mastered the skills of advancing, reversing, adjusting, controlling...very proud of her.

A future geek?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Is France richest man worried?

Bernard Arnault, the boss of Louis Vuitton, is listed as the 4th richest man in the world by Forbes Magazine last week. As the richest person in France, I wonder if he is worried about the current situation in Japan?


He ought to.

According to this article, Japan, which makes up 11 percent of global luxury sales, are expected to harm Japan's economy and severely curb luxury spending for some time. It accounts for about 9 percent for LVMH (LVMH.PA).

The first day after the Tsunami, the French reporter (France 2 at 20h) was saying that the Japanese kept their calm (Sang froid), people were still buying LV bags. However, situation has changed. Currently, people are running out of Tokyo; Toyota, Honda, Sony and other big Japanese giants are temperarily closing their factories. The Tokyo Nikkei plunged 10.55% yesterday over nuclear leak in Fukushima. Besides, Japanese ladies are among the biggest consumers in French retail stores, LV shops in Paris are always packed with the Nippons.

Look at LV's stock traded in US, it nose-dived sharply on 15 Mar (-3.1%) with extremely huge volume of trading!

Will France richest man be taken over by France richest woman, Lilian Bettencourt (L'Oreal's boss)? I don't think the Japanese women will cut spending on cosmetics.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Spring: the incredible mother nature

I always choose to go home for Chinese New Year. Beside having valuable times with family and friends, I get to escape one part of winter in France. The best part is, we I get back, spring is around the corner. Have I mentioned that Spring is my favorite season?

The flowers just painted some colour to winter background.

A full hill of flowers.

Too beautiful.

It makes me have the urge to lay down on the ground with them.

Half winter half spring.

She was so excited to go out on a sunny day. I made sure she didn't get close to those flowers though.

Isn't this tree look scary? It looks like it is surronded by broken and cancerous arms. However, it will stunning flowers later in the spring.

Cherry blossom is always the early bird to flourish.

Friday, March 04, 2011

Rant: library opening hours

Lunch break, I discovered a library just 5 minutes from my company. Excited, I went to check it out while imagining all sorts of thing I could do there during the break: reading newspaper, listening to the musics, start reading a French novel, and my heart wished dearly that I could find some Chinese books there!

I went through the automatic door but got blocked at the second one. Puzzling, I realized, they could be closed for lunch. I was very disappointed, hoping that they would at least open at 1.30pm.

Reality hit me hard, here is what I saw written on their door about their operating hours:
Mon to Fri - every afternoon from 2pm to 7pm
Wed & Sat morning from 10am to 12pm

I felt angry, seriously. My Malaysian mentality once again wanted to question the logic: isn't library one kind of public services? Public services mean serving the public right? So who could go to library at this kind of hours? Unemployed people? Stayed at home mothers? Retirees? Students? Howabout people who work normal hours from 9am to 6pm? And why aren't the library open every morning?

This incident made me realized why I stopped going to library. I used to go to the Mediatheque in Nantes when I was a student, but their operating hours were so inconvenient that I always forgot to return books on time. Since they didn't let you renew online, I paid some fine and decided to just give up.

With this kind of opening hours, I could only go after work but I usually need to rush to get Aelig. This leaves me Sat, the day I love to sleep in...

Explanations that I could think of:
1. The Town Hall here does not care if you read or not. The library exists just for its purpose of existing
2. The librarians need to have lunch between 12pm to 2pm, so the minority's need (librarians having lunch) wins over the majority one (publics need to borrow book)
3. It is a conspiracy between the Town Hall and the book publishers. Inconvenient to borrow will lead to increase in book sales.
4. The Town Hall is cutting cost, the librarians have to cover other tasks so the opening hours have to be reduced.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

My child could apply for Malaysian citizenship

In Sept 2009, I raised my concern about the fact that my child would not qualify for Malaysian citizenship as the law says that child born abroad will follow the father's citizenship.

In Apr 2010, the Malaysian government issued a statement saying that children born abroad to Malaysian mothers qualify for citizenship.

I don't know how I miss the news, but starting from 1 Jun 2010, the government has actually implemented a regulation enabling Malaysian women married to foreigners to apply Malaysian citizenship for their children born abroad. Thanks to Sze who sent me the link to Malaysian High Commission in London which contains some valuable information plus the necessary forms Borang B and Lampiran A 15(2).

I contacted the Embassy of Malaysia in Paris, they confirmed that they could now process the Application of citizenship from Malaysian mothers. However, applicant should meet certain conditions:

1. Application of citizenship must be made with the Malaysian Mission overseas in within in one (1) year from the date of birth of child. (I'm so mad at myself, I should have followed this closely. Aelig is already 14 months so it is too late for her)

2. Mother is Malaysian whe the child is born (ok for Aelig)

3. Child is born after a valid marriage (ok for Aelig)

4. Child born before 1 Jan 2010 should apply directly with the Citizenship department in Malaysia. (We could have done that, we left Malaysia just 8 days ago!)

When researching further on this topic, I found that there is a big concern / catch that would stop many from welcoming this new regulation. The parents need to sign the form A 15(2)at the Embassy whereby they declare that their child is holding only Malaysian nationality. Both parents have to agree that their child will be Malaysian citizen and they are fully aware that Malaysia does not recognize dual citizenship.

Does it mean my child have to give up her French citizenship? Will they confiscate her French passport? How can she stay in France if she is no longer French? I wrote an email to the Citizenship department and to my surpise, they replied within a few day! What a big improvement from the government agency! Anyway, from the reply, it says that I could send in my application whenever I return to Malaysia, and I could do this without having an appointment. Besides, my child doesn't need to renounce her French citizenship, she will just need to choose between being French or Malaysian when she turns 21.

Anyone knows of any Malaysian mother who has successfully gotten Malaysian citizenship for her child?