This maternity leave, I'm overjoyed to discover that places to go and things to do for little tots are aplenty in Singapore. In fact, some of the best places are free of charge.
Jacob Ballas Children's Garden - so named after a Jewish-Singaporean stockbroker and philanthropist - is a veritable garden paradise for little ones, tucked away at one corner of the Botanic Gardens.
It has designated areas for water and sand play, a tree-house structure with slides, a garden maze, a hanging bridge, and lots of thingamajigs that arouse wonder and curiosity about nature in children.
I loved how, in spite of its tropical setting, each area and walkway in the garden is framed by shady arbors - tall trees with spreading leafy branches that allow the morning sun to filter through, and channel a cooling breeze throughout.
I brought the two boys for the first time last weekend, and we couldn't resist making a second trip again when we saw how fine the weather was on Saturday.
Here are the scenes from the 2 weekends.
"A-Hiking We Will Go!"
Up the ladder and down the big orange slides at the tree-house:
Love the glee on his face!
Walking across the swinging bridge... whoa!
By turning the crank, the light comes on...
"Phew - this is back-breaking work!"
And guess who couldn't resist stripping down to just his pants and getting wet and wild!
Finally, time for a break before heading back home... little brother is already fast asleep in his stroller!