Monday, October 15, 2012

Records (Part I)

I had this strong urge to record Rayyan's progress and areas for improvements (AFIs) yesterday. Searched my shelves for an empty book and I found this book where I actually recorded Rayyan's progress when he was younger. I had totally forgotten about the book and was angry with myself for not following-up with it!  It would have been so great to have consistent records of his progress!

Anyway, the first time I made a record was when he was 24months. That was around the time when I first found out that my boy is not like any other typical toddlers.

At 2 years old (24 months)
*doesn't respond when his name is called but responds immediately when we sing
*responds to songs by doing actions (eg wheels on the bus, itsy bitsy spider, ring around the rosies, once I saw a little bird, etc)
*difficult to maintain eye contact
*do not point at things of interest (if he wants something, he will take our hand and pulls us toward the object, if he wants to be scratched, he will take our hand and put it at the itchy area, if he wants us to open a container, he will bring the container to us and tap the container)
*loves to jump and flap arms (will usually flap when he is not able to jump, for eg, when he is seated)
*doesn't like loud noises like performances or animal shows or drilling sounds
*very attached to ears (especially his Daddy's ears, will touch when he plays with Daddy or when he's going to sleep)
*able to wave bye-bye but usually doesn't make eye contact
*likes to put things in mouth (eg toys, remote control, hands, etc)
*has started to make sounds (sounds like some sort of foreign language)
*understands certain instructions (eg lie down, take your shoes, don't climb, pass the bottle)
*likes numbers and alphabets
*likes to flip books (fast but focused)
*doesn't really like to play with toys (will fiddle with them for less than a minute, then throw them aside)
*given a phone, will place phone at his ear
*likes to play hide and seek (will look for us when we hide behind furniture or under blanket)
*knows how to play drums, shake maracas, shape sorters, throw ball through hoop
*likes to walk on tip toes
*likes to look at reflection in the mirror/glass (will do different actions)
*sometimes smiles or laughs at nothing and stares into space
*when he is scolded or instructed to stop doing something (eg putting things inside his mouth, he will throw the thing aside and 'throw' himself on the floor and whine or cry)
*doesn't like to stack blocks but will unstack blocks (pulls blocks down) that other people build
*doesn't shake or nod his head to indicate yes and no
*doesn't seem to understand what is being taught (eg shapes, parts of body, etc)
*doesn't understand feelings
*doesn't interact with children or other people (plays on his own)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Brain Gym

It has been a few months since Rayyan attended Brain Gym. He goes there about 3 Saturdays per month and there's also a monthly one hour one-to-one session.

There are about 15 children per session and these children are taught to do various movements which are believed to be good for the brain. The children are also sometimes brought to the park, beach or a nature reserve to do some hiking or they are taught to climb, swing, balance on a log and many other movements. These movements, coupled with opportunities to interact and play with other children, will help the brain to grow.

The improvements that Rayyan made after attending Brain Gym are that his movements are more co-ordinated especially in terms of climbing and balancing. The trainers also informed us that he can follow instructions very well now :)

We are very, very thankful for all these improvements though I do note that he still doesn't interact and play with the other children. He is also still very hyper, jumping or running around the place.

I do hope that Rayyan will show more improvements, especially in terms of interaction and focus. Amin. If you are interested to find out more, you can go to this website..

Brain Gym

Here are photos of Rayyan's little escapades ;)
Btw, I wasn't the one who took the photos. The trainers will actually take photos and videos and send them to us..

Look who's leading the way ;)

Climbing and climbing...

It's all about balance :)

More climbing :D

Jumping Room

We call Rayyan's 'therapy' room Jumping Room.  Here, we have a crash bag, gym ball, trampoline, large tube and harness and therapy hammock.  Some parents have been asking me where I got the items from.

Here's the link (I have also included this website in my main 'links' list :

BackCare Resources Pte Ltd

This company is owned by a very kind man, Mr Richard Wong, who is very helpful and accommodating.  Do give him a call if you need to enquire anything.

Here's the full address and phone number :
BackCare Resources Pte Ltd
18 Kaki Bukit Rd 3
Entrepreneur Business Centre
Singapore 415978
Tel : 67496509

And some of you enquired about the cost too.  Well, here's what I paid for the items.

Therapy hammock $95
Cushion for the hammock $30
Tube and harness $110
Large crash bag $120
Strings and plates (the hooks which had to be drilled) $47

Please note that I bought these items almost 2 years ago so the prices might differ.  Also, I bought the trampoline and gym ball separately from a fitness store.

Here are some pictures of Rayyan's Jumping Room.  He loves it too much that we have to restrict the time he spends there!!

The tube, crash bag, trampoline and gym ball

Swinging good time!  
I used to worry endlessly that he will fall or knock against the wall but he's so good at it that I don't worry anymore now..

He loves his tube!!!

Rayyan and Irfan having fun in the hammock :)

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Irfan Syazuan

We know how important it is for Rayyan to be around kids his age, for him to have playmates. That will surely help in improving his social and interaction skills. I wish he has a sibling, one who can play with him and talk to him, someone who can just be a role model and influence him positively.

Since we can't magically produce a sibling for him.. Hehe..we decided to let him interact more with his cousin. This nephew of mine is two years older than Rayyan and is currently in Primary 2. Initially, Irfan was always jealous of Rayyan. He didn't like it when Rayyan got more attention or when Rayyan had a new toy.

We then decided that if we wanted to get his help, we must win his heart. We explained to him that Rayyan is different and that Rayyan needs his help. We answered truthfully when he asked us why Rayyan behaved in a certain manner.

And over time, Irfan has matured considerably. Although I know that he sometimes wish that Rayyan is more like his other friends or relatives, he carries out his role as 'older brother' very well. He tries his best to communicate with Rayyan and help Rayyan. When we go out, he will hold Rayyan's hand and get him back if he goes astray. And Rayyan is responding to him, not all the time, but he does enjoy having Irfan for company :)

So to my dearest nephew, thank you very, very much for being so patient and helpful. Thank you for trying your best to understand and help Rayyan. You will grow up to be a fine young man, Insya Allah :)

The wacky Irfan :P
Racing along the beach :)
Sharing the iPad in the car ;)
At the zoo
Splashing good time!!

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Rayyan is getting better and better at dressing up on his own.  He can now put on his own underwear and pants.  Still needs a bit of help with t-shirt though.  He can also wear his socks on his own though he will whine if the socks get stuck midway.

And here's Rayyan buttoning his school shirt.  Love the fact that he's so focused!  Way to go, my boy!! :))

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Spidey Watch

We got for Rayyan his very first watch last week. Prior to this, we actually let him try his cousin's watch and we were very happy to note that he didn't mind wearing the watch :)

So when I spotted this Spiderman watch at Bugis last week, I decided to get it for him. This watch is pretty cool. There are 10 different covers to choose from! The only thing that I don't like about it is that the digital panel is too small and Rayyan sometimes has difficulty looking at the time.

Anyway, since it is a digital watch, it is easy for Rayyan to tell the time. I also try my best to teach him the concept of time. For example, I will ask him what time is it and then inform him that he can do certain activities at a certain time.

Hopefully he is able to grasp the concept of time soon enough. And oh yes, he can wear the watch without much fuss too :))

What time is it????  Spidey time! Hehe

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Trash Pack

Rayyan is currently crazy about these tiny collectibles that come in garbage cans called Trash Packs. He will study each character carefully and will look at the poster to find out the names of the different characters. There are a total of 100 characters in Season One alone. Yes, they are so popular that the producers decided to come up with Season 2!!!

Anyway, Rayyan has about 20 in his collection and they're not cheap ok! Every 5 tiny characters cost $12.90!! But I guess I don't mind buying them for him because he treasures his Trash Packs and will bring them wherever he goes!

Anyway, today we did some work and as a reward, I gave him a new TP character. He looked at it once and gave me the name of the character. I was pretty stunned at first. I mean, there are 100 characters. How can he remember the name??

I decided to check the poster and true enough, the name he gave was correct. I then decided to test his knowledge on the other characters. I covered the names and asked him to give me the names of the other characters.

You know what, he has memorized ALL 100 characters!! The thing is, I didn't even go through the characters with him. He read them all on his own! I was amazed!!! Indeed, even though he is weak and need to work on many areas, God gives him strength in other areas. Thank you so, so much, God!

Now, how can I make full use of this strength??? I really want to stretch him further and see how I can maximize this potential...

Henderson Waves

We decided to check out Henderson Waves last weekend. I really do prefer to go for outdoor activities compared to shopping centres as Rayyan will get too excited and spend hours at the toy store!

Anyway, the place is nice, the view especially. Rayyan seemed very happy too especially when he spotted a sign warning us that monkeys are spotted around the area! He was definitely hoping to see the monkeys!

We enjoyed ourselves.. the view was gorgeous, we managed to see the sunset and we even had a small picnic. On the way back, while we were walking and enjoying the view, Rayyan came up to me and said, "Mummy, I want you to carry me because I want to see jungle!"

There was this small forest under the bridge and I think he was hoping to find the elusive monkeys there!

But you know what is so special about that request? It was his longest sentence ever! Usually when he makes a request for us to carry him, we would ask him why. This time round, he combined both sentences together without prompting. I was really, really happy. Thank you, God :))

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Here I come!!!!

Gosh, it has been more than a month since I updated this blog!!! The good news is that it's now term 4 and final year exams will start this week. After that, it's going to be post exam activities and then the hols!!! Woohoo!! Can't wait to spend more time with my boys! Hopefully I get to update this blog more regularly too!

Anyway, yesterday night, Rayyan couldn't sleep as he napped for 3 hours in the afternoon. So we decided to play some games and one of the games was hide and seek.

Rayyan still needs help when it comes to hiding as he gets really, really excited and would shout or go find the seeker before he's found!!

But he can seek pretty well and can also count quietly at a corner. He would go... "1,2...10!! Ready or not, here I come!!" lol

And here's our boy counting before seeking his Daddy. And yes, he would also sometimes cheat and peek through his fingers!! Hahaha

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Daddy's Day

I was going through my list of videos at YouTube and realised that I forgot to post one very important video here!!

I made a video for Hubby for Daddy's Day last June.  Just a simple video that captured a Daddy's love for his boy since he was born.  Glad that he loved it and almost teared!  I knew Hubby was controlling his tears because we were around and he didn't want to look too emotional.. hehe..

To the most important person in Rayyan's life..
You have really been the most awesome Daddy to our little gem.  You mean the world to us and we love you with our hearts.  Thank you so much for all the sacrifices.  Rayyan wouldn't reach this far if not because of you..

"Any man can be a Father. It takes someone special to be a Dad." - Anonymous

Oh yes, one more very important quote!

"The most important thing that a man can do for his children is to love their mother." - Theodore M. Hesburgh

Don't forget ok!! lol  We love you!

Saturday, August 11, 2012


I hate spring cleaning and I really do wish I have a helper at this point of time!!! Nevertheless, I must say that spring cleaning is a therapeutic activity because it brings you back down memory lane and you kind of reflect on past events, good and bad. The sweet memories make you smile and you feel warm inside and the bad ones, well, you just learn from it and hope it doesn't happen again.

There are a couple that I want to blog about because I want to remember these events...

First, I came across Rayyan's passport photos!! We have just renewed his old passport and will be collecting the new one soon.

The old and new passport photos remind me that he's growing against all odds. My little baby is getting bigger and bigger and it's just so difficult for me to grasp that!!!

Baby, don't grow so fast can???!!!
The photo on the left is super cute, right??  And the one on the right is a current photo of my handsome boy :)
And I just realised that the hairstyle is still the same.. Hehehe

Friday, August 10, 2012

Helping Hand

I was spring cleaning the house when I saw two photos that were given to Hubby because he helped out during a fundraising activity last year. That time Rayyan's EIPIC centre wanted parent volunteers to help design bags for its fundraising project and Hubby came forward. Glad that he finally put his drawing talent to good use. You should do this more often hor, Daddy ;))

And love the quote behind the photo too :)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

We are Singapore! Singaporeaaaans!

Happy 47th Birthday, Singapore!!

Here's my patriotic boy singing with such passion!  You should be proud of him, Singapore!!! :)))

Saturday, August 4, 2012


Every year during fasting month, we have gatherings with my in-laws for breaking fast sessions. Sadly, Rayyan hates these sessions. I guess it's partly because he doesn't know them very well because he seldom sees them. Another reason is because there are so many kids during these sessions and the house is pretty cramped and he feels stifled I guess. Rayyan will usually cry during these sessions and keeps requesting to go home.

This evening we went to my sis-in-law's place for another gathering and as usual I felt pretty stressed up. Fortunately, he was ok when we showed him the schedule and told him that we are going to his Mak Ngah's (middle aunty's) house. At the lift landing, he showed some displeasure because he knew we were going to his Aunty's house but I ignored him and he just followed us up.

He also followed us into the house silently and inside, he sat quietly and watched the other children playing games on television. He also watched television quietly and when the kids started playing iPad, he approached them and watched them play, feeling excited about the game, occasionally flapping his arms but stopped when we reminded him to stop.

Then when all the children gathered to celebrate the birthday of one of his cousins, he stood quietly while photos were taken and even clapped his hands while singing the birthday song.

Even though he didn't talk to them nor play with them, I am thankful that he didn't cry or throw tantrums. I am glad that he showed respect to his aunties and uncles by kissing their hands. I am glad that he listened to us and didn't make a lot of fuss. Hopefully one day he will join them, talk to them and play with them. Insya Allah :)

Checking out the game that his cousin is playing on the iPad ;)

Rayyan and cuzzies :))

Thursday, August 2, 2012

White Tiger

National Day is just around the corner and Hubby taught Rayyan how to sing one of the famous Singapore songs. He can remember the lyrics and can sing pretty well. I am amazed at his memory. He can catch and remember what we teach him pretty fast. Will post a video of him singing the song soon ;)

Anyway, today while putting him to sleep, he started to sing the song. And what surprised us was how he changed the lyrics according to what he was doing.

He had his animal collections by the bed and was holding on to the white tiger. He sang...

We are Singapore
We are Singapore
We will stand together
Hear the WHITE TIGER roar!!

He changed the word 'lion' to 'white tiger'!! We were happy and clapped our hands.

Rayyan was happy too that we were cheering and clapping and guess what he said after that??


It's little things like these that totally make our day :))

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


It used to be difficult to dress Rayyan up.. He didn't like to wear long sleeves so it was difficult to make him wear shirts, sweaters, jackets, baju kurung, etc. Hari Raya has always been such a stressful period!!

He also didn't want to wear other types of shoes apart from his Crocs. In addition, no caps or other outfits that are different from his usual attire. He still doesn't like to wear caps now but if it's very hot and I explain to him, he's pretty ok. In fact, he has improved a lot in this dressing department!! Thank God!!

Yesterday night, on the way home, he insisted on wearing sunglasses! We relented after a while but had to guide him because we were afraid that he might fall into a drain!! Lol

Wearing sunglasses is another big NO-NO last time so we were pretty tickled. In fact, he is getting cheekier!!!

Here's the cheeky, cheeky boy!!

Walking around with shades in the middle of the night!!

My cheeky boys!!

Monday, July 23, 2012


I'm sure there's just something that your kid does that totally gets on your nerves!

Well, in Rayyan's case, it is this particular habit of saying the first alphabet of certain words when he is upset.

Example :
Me: Rayyan, keep your toys!
Rayyan (whining sometimes crying) : Keep! K!!!

Another example :
Me : Rayyan, let's bathe!
Rayyan (again whining and sometimes crying) : Bathe!! B!!

And those situations really get on our nerves! Even though we have taught him to protest and say, "I don't want!", he will still protest in that manner!

Help!!! Arghhhh!!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Racial Harmony Week

This week is Racial Harmony week and Rayyan's teacher at PCS has earlier sent us an SMS to inform us of the different activities that have been arranged for the kids.

There's different theme everyday and apparently, today's theme is Malay and the kids are encouraged to wear Malay costumes.

When I was in school, Hubby smsed me and informed me that Rayyan was very cooperative. Didn't even make a fuss when Hubby put on his Malay costume. This is a big achievement as he HATES wearing the long-sleeved costume!!

Then Hubby sent me a picture of him in his costume and a while later, another picture of him with a classmate. I couldn't help but flash my huge smile when I saw the picture!! They are soooooo cute!!!!

The teacher then told us that he's very cooperative in school today and played or tried to play Malay traditional games like sepak takraw, marbles and congkak with his classmates!!

We couldn't be more proud!! 3 cheers for Rayyan!!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Ice Age 4

Yesterday, we had an awesome time watching Ice Age 4! The show is fast and exciting and Rayyan couldn't contain his excitement! He was smiling and laughing!! Of course, I still have to put my hand on his mouth whenever he gets too excited and loud!! Hehe..

The excited little boy ;)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Entertainer

Last Saturday, we went to check out my sis' new house and guess who's most excited? Rayyan!!!

It was a four-storey house and Rayyan was climbing up and down the stairs!! Phew!! He also couldn't wait to jump into the pool. He kept going near the pool and touched the water. He couldn't keep still!!

Towards the end, we were all gathered at the still-empty living room and guess who entertained us all? Rayyan! He was singing and dancing and had no hesitations in acceding to our requests. And he will also prompt us to clap our hands whenever he finished a song. We were all laughing at his antics!! And he was enjoying the attention!

I never thought that my baby would be an entertainer one day, that he wouldn't mind being the centre of attention. My heart was soaring that day. I thank God for blessing me with this little angel. He has taught me so much. He has taught me patience, humility, perseverance but most important of all, he has taught me the meaning of UNCONDITIONAL love. I love you so much my little angel...

Our little angel who loves to be kissed by both Mummy and Daddy at the same time :)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Let's play!!

Rayyan just came back from playing soccer downstairs. Hehe.. Well, he doesn't know how to play but he likes to run with the boys under our block and Hubby will usually let him be. The boys also don't mind him running around them.

Anyway, after he came back, I asked him how he kicks a ball and he showed me the action. Then he tugged my hand..
Rayyan : Mummy, let's play AI football!! (referring to the soccer player figurines he has)
Me : Ok! Go and take your AI football.
Rayyan : Mummy, follow me! (requesting that I follow him to his playroom)

Then he got the player to kick the ball around and said, "I have 4 balls!" (referring to the balls that he has gathered).

Those few sentences that he said made me so happy! Way to go my boy, I am extremely proud of you! :)
His AI Football figurines. He loves to watch the show on Okto!

Positioning the player before getting the player to kick the ball :)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

With difficulty comes ease...

Read this in FB.  A reminder to me....

Life's struggles are hard yet they pass, because with difficulty comes ease. Within hardships there is Allah's Mercy, nothing is ever completely miserable (although it may not seem that way at times). Trials are complicated, yet they are tools used to strengthen our souls in this life, our minds in reflection, and prep our hearts towards Allah. No matter how much we are tested, Allah always provides good and the best for those who submit with trust. Our Prophet SAW promised us that the believers who put up with the just a tiny prick of a thorn with patience would be rewarded. Moreso, Allah SWT made it clear that the believers would be tested with their lives to open up another way in affirming our faith even more in Allah and the Last Day. Calamities are not always a form of earthly punishment, sometimes they are reminders that the, Most Wise, Allah, Knows we are capable of acing a chapter quiz of life. We are never given more than what we can handle. Alhamdulilah for that, alhamdulilah for everything.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Like Mummy, like sonny!! Both Rayyan and I love eating beancurd!!

This afternoon while he was enjoying his beancurd, I asked him..

Me: Do you like to eat beancurd?
Rayyan: Yes!
Me: Why do you like to eat beancurd?
Rayyan: Because I want to eat beancurd!

See what I mean about him having difficulty answering WHY questions? So I took out his conversation cards and wrote...

And after that, he was able to answer correctly!! Yay!! But I have another task now... To teach him the meaning of DELICIOUS! *slaps forehead*


We went to Pathlight School yesterday to personally submit Rayyan's application form.

Pathlight School is a prestigious autism school here. Seriously speaking, we are not sure if Rayyan can get in but we just want to give it a shot.

We have heard that it's really difficult to get into Pathlight. You have to be independent, able to follow instructions and able to work in a group setting. Basically, you have to be in the high-functioning end.

I have always believed that my boy is smart, that with the proper structures, he can do pretty well academically. A school like Pathlight will provide those structures. But at the same time, I must also be realistic. Rayyan is super active, he has difficulty maintaining his focus and works better 1-to-1.

So we are leaving it to God now. We hope he will get a school that will allow him to develop holistically and let him reach his full potential.

Please answer our prayers, God.

We really hope you will take Rayyan in and transform his life :)

Monday, July 2, 2012

Silly Faces

Rayyan hates taking photos! It is so difficult to get him to look at the camera and even more difficult to get him to smile!!!

To get a nice photo of him, we either have to joke around with him to make him smile or just be prepared with a smile plastered on our faces and snap the very moment he looks at the camera!! It is a really difficult task I tell you and so far, I am the only one who has the expertise!

But I am so thankful that with iPhone, we can actually see our own images before we snap. That is a truly wonderful invention/app!!

So sometimes, when we are bored, I will take photos using that and taught him to make silly faces, or stick out our tongues and since he can see our image, he can see what I'm doing and follow me!! And we will have fun acting silly!!!

Here's a recent collage of photos we took while Daddy was busy buying food.. Hehe... And I must say that I am always captivated by his smile. My boy has one of the most DAZZLING smiles :D

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Where is Daddy?

On our way out earlier today, Hubby had to rush back to our house to get something. The lift came and Rayyan and I went in.

While in the lift...
Rayyan : Where is Daddy?
Me: Daddy went back into the house to take something. Why don't you shout for Daddy?
Rayyan : (shouting, although it wasn't very loud) Daddy, where are you????

It is very, very rare that Rayyan asks questions and the conversation in the lift just makes me realise how much he has improved. It is a slow process but with each little improvement, each statement that he makes, each question that he asks, I am truly thankful to God.

I also realised that he was able to use IS and ARE correctly. Yup, we have used those questions before and I think he was just repeating what we said before. But still, I was really happy that he remembered!

Thank you, God for every little achievement he makes. Alhamdulillah :)


Yesterday when Hubby sent Rayyan for his Brain Gym class, Hubby told two of the mummies that we are close to that we will be watching a movie after his class.

One of the mummies approached Rayyan.
The Mummy : Rayyan, where are you going after Brain Gym?
Rayyan : Watch movie.

The Mummy : What show?
Rayyan: The Amazing Spiderman!

Just that. Two questions. Two answers. And we were beaming with pride! =)

Saturday, June 30, 2012


We are going to watch the Amazing Spiderman today and Rayyan is super, duper excited!!  He has his Brain Gym class in the morning and we have promised him that we will bring him to watch a movie after his class.

I still remember how afraid he was when he watched movie for the first time.  He was afraid of the dark cinema, he was afraid of the loud sound system and we had to reassure him time and again that everything is going to be just fine.  Nowadays, he enjoy movies so much that he will pull us towards the cinema!

Not too long ago, we watched The Avengers and he was very excited because he likes Captain America!  After that day, he knew all the other super heroes!  And nowadays, whenever we bring him to 7-11, he will go to the magazines section to look for the comics.  The comics are not cheap ok! :P

And recently, we watched Madagascar.  Before we watched the movie, we talked to him about the animals and taught him the song.  He was so excited to see the animals come alive in the movie that he shouted a couple of times in the cinema!  Luckily the other children were shouting in excitement in the cinema too!  Phew!

Btw, some tips to those who want to bring their children to the cinema for the first time...

1)  We love going to the FilmGarde Cinema at Leisure Park Kallang because there are not many people there.  Sometimes there will only be a few people in the cinema!  This is good because Rayyan don't get too overwhelmed by the crowd and even if he shouts or throw tantrums, we wouldn't feel too bad for disturbing the other people :)

2)  Bring lots of snacks!!!  Sometimes when Rayyan is super excited, can't sit still and is too noisy, we feed him with his favourite snacks to keep him busy! Hehehe

3)  It is best to tell the kids what is going to happen inside so that they can anticipate and not be too scared.  For Rayyan, when we were in the cinema for the first time, I held on to his hand, hugged him and kept on reassuring him.  Loads of praises help a lot too ;)

We are looking forward to another great movie session!  No shouting or tantrums, we hope!  

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Picture Description

We bought a set of pictures from ARC (Pathlight Mall) that can be used to help Rayyan in his speech.

The pictures show children and adults doing different kind of activities and behind each card is a set of questions that can be used to ask the children.

Rayyan is still at the beginning stage. He can basically answer simple questions like..
What is the baby doing?
Answer: Crying
Where is the girl?
Answer: Swimming Pool

He still has difficulty forming full sentences and has difficulty answering the WHY, WHO, WHEN questions.

We believe he will improve with time. We just need to be more diligent in guiding him and find more pictures for him to talk about.

Patience is the only way to go!!

The picure cards we got from ARC (Pathlight Mall)

One of the pictures inside.  I like the fact that the pictures are big!

Guiding questions behind each picture :)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Next Idol?

Rayyan loves to sing and sings all the time!! Sometimes he doesn't quite know the lyrics of a song and will just sing anyhow and it is really quite hilarious I tell you ;)

Recently, Hubby resorted to writing down the lyrics of songs on the whiteboard to encourage him to sing properly and it worked really well!

Here's our idol singing one of our favourite songs, 'I believe I can fly' by R Kelly. It's our favourite because it's really meaningful and yes baby, we believe you can fly one day!! We love you!

Conversation with the Animal Expert

Here's our latest conversation with our animal expert.  Now, he not only knows the names of the animals but where they live, what they eat, etc...  And he gets all these information by reading the many animal books we bought for him :)


It has been ages since I updated this blog.  So much has happened and I went through a cycle of emotions these past few months or so.  In fact, I don't even know how to explain what I went through and how I want to start this post...  I will try my best, sorry if everything seems confusing and jumbled up..

Anyway, first of all, I lost one of the most important people in my life recently.  My mum.  She passed away in March and till now, I am trying my best to cope with her death, with losing her.  She was one of my pillars of strength (the other one is my Hubby) and without her, I felt, well, literally unstable.  She has always been the one who kept me grounded, who was willing to give me a slap in the face (not literally of course) whenever I did anything wrong.  I just miss her so, so much...   

Then, there's work.  I'm taking more graduating classes this year and I have more projects and duties to handle.  I have been spending a lot of time at work and it was very difficult to maintain the work-life balance.  It has been very, very difficult for me to cope with the demands of my job and my family..

Then of course, there is my one my only prince, my son, Rayyan.  I must admit that I haven't done much for him these past few months.  And that made me feel really, really horrible... With the heavy workload, I left everything to my husband.. from his meals, to his school stuffs, to teaching him.. almost everything.  It was like I passed the entire baggage to Hubby.  You know sometimes you hear stories from Mummies complaining about their hubbies who just work and not involved in their children's lives..  well, I was just like one of those men.  Of course, I brought Rayyan out, had fun with him, yes, I did spend time with him.  But I didn't really make the effort to teach him or build resources for him.  I'm just so busy and tired that when I'm at home, all I want to do is relax and not think about anything else...  Yes, I am feeling really, really horrible and guilty thinking about this now.

And basically these are the reasons why I have not been updating my blog... In fact, a few weeks ago, I wanted to close down this blog.. I know that many Mummies read my blog and find some sort of inspiration through this blog..  But I was thinking..... Who am I to inspire other mummies when I myself don't do much?  I definitely don't have the right to advise other mummies when these few months or so, all I did was to let my emotions control me and only thought of myself...  I was just so, so selfish!

But I have realised my mistakes now... there's no point in thinking about the past and regretting what I did.  It's time to learn from my mistakes.  I know some Mummies e-mailed me and wanted to seek my advice.  I am sorry Mummies for not replying to those e-mails.  Like I said, I just felt I don't deserve to give advice in the situation I was in.  I will try my best to get back to you when I am feeling much better ya.  Please accept my sincerest apologies...

And before I end this post, I would like to thank my ever-patient Hubby for everything.  Even though I sometimes refuse to get involved and just want to do nothing but vegetate at home, he stood by me.  He never once complained and told me he understood totally how tired I was and he didn't blame me at all.  Sometimes I feel God is too kind to me for giving me such a patient and kind husband.  Thank you, thank you so much God!!!

It is time for me to switch off my 'denial' mode and start to think of my family, especially my son.  Please forgive Mummy, Rayyan.  I promise that I will try my best to do more for you from this day onward.  I love you and your Daddy with all my heart...

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


I was at my staff meeting yesterday and before the meeting started, we were given this small notebook for reflection.  We were told to reflect on anything and something came to my mind.  This is what I wrote..

A puppy walks past...

Kid : Mummy, look at the puppy!  So cute!

Rayyan : A puppy is a baby dog.  It has four legs and a tail.  Its body is covered with fur.

You are different
You are just being you
Mummy don't want you to be any different
But please help Mummy understand you.

I love you for who you are, baby.  Always.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Can we teach our children the concept of God?  As it is, our children already face difficulties grasping concepts that are concrete, what more understanding something as abstract as God?  We know that it is very, very difficult for our boy to understand the concept of something that he can't see but Hubby and I thought that we should introduce God to Rayyan.  We believe in Allah, we believe in divine intervention and we want Rayyan to share the same belief.

That is why we decided to get him to do simple things like saying thanks before he eats, asking for God's protection before he goes out and before he goes to sleep.

I prepared a short and simple prayer that he can say before he goes out and before he sleeps.  To help him understand, I put it down in English.  One is stuck to the wall near the door and the other is near the bed and we make him recite these simple prayers daily.

Rayyan has memorised these simple prayers and everytime he recites them, my heart will swell with pride and joy.

Thank you, Allah!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Work Time

We finally started 'Work Time' last December and Rayyan is doing pretty well at it.  'Work Time' is where Rayyan does work on his own, not on a one-on-one basis.  It teaches him to be independent.

For a start, we have to make sure the tasks given are easy, something that he already knows so that he doesn't give up halfway or feel too frustrated.  We also follow the structure at his EIPIC centre, AAS so that he is familiar with the routine.

 The prompters/cue cards

The tasks placed on the racks

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Before and After

Hubby taught Rayyan the concept of 'before' and 'after' and he is grasping the concept pretty well :))

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Gym Ball

Rayyan has a gym ball at home and he likes to sit on it.  I feel that with the gym ball, he can focus better as he is always kept on his toes.  Also, when he sits on the gym ball, he doesn't jump around.

But of course, I do not let him sit on it all the time.  He still has to learn to sit on his chair quietly.

Here is Rayyan reciting numbers.  He can recite numbers to 100 but still needs to work on pronunciation.  He will still pronounce 'Fourteen' for 'Forty', 'Fifteen' for 'Fifty', etc...

And here, I am working on his reading and pronunciation.  He has definitely shown a lot of improvement in his pronunciation.  Go, go Rayyan!!


Last Friday, we went to Airport T3 and Rayyan requested to do wheelbarrows at the big empty space.  Then he wanted to do bear walk and Hubby took the opportunity to get him to do cross leg exercises and we ended up playing catch there!! lol 

The airport used as an exercising ground :)

When we play catch, we are usually the catchers (Rayyan has difficulty taking on the role as the catcher) and whenever we play, Rayyan will usually run a bit and then allow us to catch him! Haha... But yesterday, we ran together..  When I became the catcher, Hubby would lead Rayyan and they would run together.  Then Hubby would guide Rayyan and get him to catch me.

We had loads of fun.  In fact, Rayyan's melodious laughter is still ringing in my head till now.  Rayyan was having such a good time and I was truly happy.  My boy has come a long way.  I am so glad that yesterday, he was laughing along with us and not laughing on his own, for no rhyme or reason.  Well, he still does that sometimes, giggling at something in his head but yesterday, he was totally with us.  And nothing can take away the joy I felt.

Sometimes it just takes an empty space and hearts full of love to make us truly happy :) 

Friday, February 17, 2012


Hubby and I were just discussing about the kids with autism that we know and we were lamenting over how some of them are faring better than our boy, that it is so much easier for them to do certain things and pick up certain skills and so difficult for Rayyan to do so.  Maybe this is not fair to our boy, that we shouldn't compare him to others but with his IQ assessment around the corner and we are still unsure which  school he will move on to next year, well, we couldn't help ourselves.  We are just extremely worried..

We keep telling ourselves that autism is a spectrum.... those in the spectrum can be anywhere within the spectrum, whether at the higher or the lower end.  Fortunately for those at the higher end, they pick up skills pretty easily... talking, writing, following instructions, etc, they don't require as much coaching and guidance as the ones at the lower end.

We know of mothers who have never sent their children for any therapies or classes (their children only attend EIPIC and a mainstream kindergarten) and yet, the kids are doing so wonderfully well.  At the same time, we know of parents who sent their children to many different therapies and classes, who provided so much support at home but these parents are so frustrated because the children are progressing at a snail's pace.

So at the end of the day, what does it come down to?   ACCEPTANCE.  This is a reminder to myself and Hubby that we cannot expect our boy to be someone else, that we have to accept his limitations, that we have to accept him for who he is.  I am not saying that we should withdraw him from all his classes or just let him do whatever he wants at home.  As parents, we must try our best to guide him, support him, teach him and simply do our best to help him.  In fact, in our case, we have to work harder than other parents.  

We should aim for PROGRESS rather than perfection.  We should always focus on his STRENGTHS and not his weaknesses.  We shouldn't strive for Rayyan to be just like those high-functioning children we know, instead we should strive for Rayyan to reach his FULL POTENTIAL.

Ten, twenty years down the road, we want to be able to tell ourselves that we have done our best...  The rest is up to God...

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Party in School

Overdue pics of Rayyan's party in school about two months ago...hehe..  Anyway, even though we had a party for him at home, we wanted to do another one in school because we know that many children have their parties in school too and we want him to have the same experience.  And we were really glad we did it :D

It was great to see him surrounded by his classmates.  When I came, many of them came up to me and told me how much they like him.  They are aware that he's 'different' but they still accept him, love him and the best part is, they PROTECT him.  It was so heartwarming to see how loving and non-judgemental these children are.

I am so thankful that he has classmates such as this boy by the name of Alden who is always looking out for him.  When I came, Alden told me how much Rayyan likes to hug him and indeed, Rayyan keeps hugging him!  Hubby told me that even during naptime, Rayyan is always with Alden.  I am glad that Rayyan has found a good friend in school.

There is also this girl by the name of Sharlene who helps Rayyan a lot, making sure Rayyan does the tasks given and that he follows instructions.  She is such a responsible and helpful girl and I can still remember the conversation she had with me when we were there...

Sharlene : Rayyan's mummy, I love Rayyan you know.
Me : Is it?
Sharlene : Ya, I love him but I don't know if he loves me or not...

Hahahaha... Isn't she cute???!  

I pray that Rayyan will always be loved by his classmates, teachers and those around him.  I pray that as he grows, people around him will understand and accept him, autism and all.  I pray that he in turn, will be a good friend to those around him. Amin...

The theme for his party in school... Angry Bird!

Teachers and Daddy getting the kiddos together

Rayyan's lovely classmates

And yes, that is Alden hugging him like a big brother!

All couldn't wait to sing the birthday song..

Happy Birthday to you!!!!!

Time to blow the candles...

But oh wait, they want to sing the Chinese version too! haha

Finally, he can blow the candles!  And I just burst with pride everytime I see this photo :)

Alden couldn't help giggling when Rayyan accidentally touched the cake!

Good friends :D

And this is the girl who loves Rayyan, Sharlene.. ;)

Surrounded by the roses...  
One hugging him, one holding his hand... Rayyan is a ladies' man! lol

The cute, little gentlemen

And how can we forget the teachers?!! Hehe  
Thank you teachers for taking good care of him :)

Rayyan distributing his party packs

He is such a big boy now... *emo mode*

And Rayyan darling, we hope you had a good time.  I promise that as long as I can, I will make every birthday of yours fun and memorable... Love you so, so much!!