Movie at Home : The Palace of Infinite Reflections

Kid #1 has just started Primary school and I find the schedule change hard to manage. I couldn’t figure out how other parents did it. I kept trying to figure out how did they manage to fit revision after dinner. What about playing? Don’t their kids play? Why is it that those blogs and articles say kids are suppose to play? Am I allowed to let them play?

It’s a public holiday today and instead of doing exam exercises I downloaded Lego Movie 1 & 2. (Love the show! The songs!) I am wondering if I imagine kids can be managed like a manufacturing process, with strict adherence to schedules. I think it’s maybe like managing a new baby. Key jobs need to be done for a baby – diapering, drinking milk and sleeping. A schedule is necessary so that mummy and baby get what they need to do out of the way. It does depend on whether how fast or slow the baby and mummy gets all these things done.

So perhaps I should just set key tasks and we try to fit that into a schedule to get all the things done so that play can continue.

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Fear by Bob Woodward

I took while to finish this book. It was not hard to read and very gripping in the way I keep making scream faces from Edvard Munch. It was funny Americans believe in secrets in government. In British government, it’s called confidential security briefings. (I love Yes, Minister.) In Singapore, we are much more hapless and funnier. After a while, that level of surprise was unsustainable. It was tiring.

Perhaps it is American for a president to work happily with the staff around him without disagreements. Perhaps they all think the same way because the President surrounds himself with the kind of people who shares his thinking. That they have to steal papers, quit a lot, move things around, try to silence fallouts is normal if you don’t think of it as the government. If you imagine this happening in a private organisation, that’s par on course. Some might express horror how can any organisation work at all but the uncertainty is how private organisations need to work. If there is certainly and consensus, it is probably a family business and believed as stuffy and slow.

Back to the book, I enjoyed and admired his investigative journalism. The conversations he captured in the book is astounding. Unhappy people are willing to share their unhappiness. He tapped that gold vein and mined it well. I was fascinated to take out another of his book.

One eye is not enough

I notice that most YouTube channel owners in the makeup field are really open to plastic surgery. Some look dramatically different from when they started their channel. Their face and body is, in their minds, endlessly malleable.

Obviously, the problem is the camera. The camera is a laser beam that targets what we find annoying – perhaps, it wasn’t even that annoying at first – and blows it out of proportion.The camera has just one eye. That is the crux of the issue. It is not even a cyclops, who are skilled with hands. It lacks the rest of the senses and perception and is used (or abused) for its imagined objectivity. Casting a cold, distant eye on all, it suggests judgements.

The audience is suspicious yet enamored by the one eye creature. The operator assures it is all true. Only the objective truth! Trust us!

Lies, really. We don’t find anyone’s grandparents ugly. We don’t find anyone’s parents unattractive. (We don’t find parents attractive in general.) We don’t find strangers unattractive. We find certain people attractive – even if he or she may have a bulbous nose, two flapping ears, or a wide stretching mouth. 情人眼里出西施 is not the same as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The problem, I am trying to tell you, is the camera.

MOE Resource Library

I was helping the older child log into his Student Learning portal. I mucked about the site and discovered they is additional learning resources. They have them for most subjects. The kids were fighting me on the laptop to try out the activities. I think they can do this all day if I let them.

I ruined my eyes reading Deborah Cadbury.

I randomly picked out a Deborah Cadbury audio book. It was fascinating, marvelous and totally riveting how many issues Queen Victoria had. It was a bit of a shock to learn that the heads of states in Europe were family and how it led to WWI. I was so obsessed by the end of the audiobook that I had to take out Princes At War. Obsessed with WWII, I forayed into “The Last of the Duchess” by Caroline Blackwood. It was not as impressive. I went back to the French Revolution with The Lost King of France. That was terrible and awful. I wept over the cruelty exacted by the angry people on the little boy Louis XVII. My childish admiration of revolutionists dimmed with that book. So did my eyes. My eyes were crossed from reading on my phone screen. I bought an eReader. A Kobo for its ability to borrow books from overdrive. (If only it plays audiobooks.)

Last Saturday I completed Space Race while the kids were at the various lessons. My crying in Kopitiam was put to a stop when I glanced at the nearby clock and noticed it was 10 mins to pick up time. (A race all the way to maths class proved a total waste of effort because one of them was slow that day.)

I was moderately engaged when the book started, by the end, I admired the organisation, the political maneuvers, hard work and the incredible amount of risks in space travel. (I don’t watch many movies. I only know the quote “Houston, we have problem.” because other people were repeating it.) It had never occurred to me that passion was dangerous. The rocket designers had pursued their passion, their dream with such zeal. When Cold War politics came into the mix, it was the fuel that gave burst to the speed in building spaceships. Cadbury showed the extent of consideration of risks of going into space. She also showed the intensity of that desire allowed the risks to be rationalised away. I love it!

I haven’t read Dinosaur Hunters. I need a break after all that outpouring of emotion. I’ve moved on to Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth by Margaret Atwood.

Queen Victoria's Matchmaking by Deborah Cadbury Princes at War by Deborah Cadbury The Lost King of France by Deborah Cadbury Space Race by Deborah Cadbury Dinosaur Hunters by Deborah Cadbury

It takes a village

I haven’t used hyaluronic acid for years since I read that the large molecules can’t penetrate and the small molecules creates a pro-inflammatory reaction to the skin.

I used propendiaol 1,3 in my last batch and didn’t like the texture. I never liked glycerin Lately aloe made my eyes water. There is always good ol’ sea kelp bio ferment but it pills with makeup.

Some times all a girl needs is a humectant. Honey is a great humectant and I enjoy the feeling of the skin after I clean off my honey mask but it is expensive and inconvenient. This texture is really good but I felt it lacks emolliency. I had a hard time trying to resist adding oils to this water based lotion. Instead, I add a few drops of oil after the serum.