A Conversation between Siblings (or, Big Brother is Watching You)

We’re sitting around the table, enjoying an ice-cream treat. J is 9 years old, Little E is 6 years old and Thumper is nearly 2 years old.

J: I wish I lived in a Bungalow. Then I could have extra rooms for all my ornaments. Every time I get a new ornament, I’ll put it in a triple locked cupboard. Every week I’ll take out the ornaments and polish them. I’ll have to buy lots of polish. And the front door will be quadruple locked for extra security!

Debs G: Okay.


Debs G: I feel sorry for your wife.

J: Why?

Debs G: Because she’ll have to spend all her time polishing your ornaments.

J: No no no no no. She’s not allowed to touch the ornaments, because they are MY ornaments. She’s only allowed to look at them while I polish them.

Little E: I don’t want to live in a bungalow. I’m going to live in a farmhouse. I’m going to have a cat and a dog to keep me company. And I’m going to marry my friend Ben.

J: WHAT?! Who is this “Ben”? You’ve never talked about him before. Who is he?

Little E: He’s the one who gave me a kiss on the cheek last week.

Thumper: (waving his spoon) NO NO!

J: (enraged) He did WHAT?! Why didn’t you kick him?!

Little E: He asked me nicely if he could give me a kiss and I said ok.

Thumper: (pointing his spoon at Little E) NO NO!

J: You can’t just go around letting weirdos give you a kiss! If he tries to pull this stunt again, you should give him a kick! A BIG KICK!

Little E: He’s not a weirdo! He’s my friend!

Thumper: (frowning) NO NO! NO NO!

J: Well, we haven’t met him, so he’s must be a weirdo or you would have introduced him to us first before letting him give you a kiss! This is nonsense! He’s not worthy of marrying my sister! If I see him, I’m going to kick him!

Little E: That’s why I didn’t want to tell you because I didn’t want you to freak out!

J: WHY WOULD I FREAK OUT?! I’m not freaking out at all. I am totally normal!

Debs G: Little E, the next time somebody in your class asks to give you a kiss or asks you for a kiss, you should tell them that you need to ask your mummy and daddy first, okay?

Little E: Okay, Mummy.

J: And then I will find him and give him a kick.


Enjoying ice-cream at Udders Cafe

Dying of Depression

The following post has been placed behind a cut because of its frank discussion of depression and suicide, which may upset some readers.  Owls Well Blogs urges its readers to seek help if they are suffering or know someone who is suffering from depression.  Beyond Blue and the Black Dog Institute have very useful online resources to help with dealing with depression, whether you’re suffering from it or know someone who is.

If you have been thinking about suicide, please seek immediate help.  In Australia, you can call Lifeline at 13 11 14.  In Singapore, call the Samaritans of Singapore at 1800 221 4444.  You do not have to suffer alone.

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Imaginary Friends: 26 Fables for the Kid in Us by Melanie Lee (An E-book Review)

Written by Melanie Lee and illustrated by Sheryl Khor

Written by Melanie Lee and illustrated by Sheryl Khor

Imaginary Friends: 26 Fables for the Kid in Us is a cheeky A to Z compilation of short stories written by local writer Melanie Lee, and illustrated by Sheryl Khor.

If these names look familiar, you’ve probably seen them both online before. Melanie is also known in Internet Land as Tea Lady Mel, and Sheryl is a freelance writer and owner of the online fashion store, Bricolage Boutique. But, to me, they are both dear friends from my childhood and I am so proud to be able to review their published work!

The 26 fables are inspired by memories from Sheryl and Melanie’s primary school days together, when they used to make-believe that their water-bottles had names [1] and went on magical adventures. I can even see one of the games that Sheryl and I used to play using stationery and pencil boxes [2] in the story ‘E is for Elly Eraser‘.

Despite the cuddly cover and whimsical full-colour cartoon illustrations, Imaginary Friends is a highly irreverent and impudent little book written for grown-up-children like myself. The stories are full of sardonic wit, interspersed with the occasional tender moment. I especially like the life lesson at the end of each tale (because all fables must come with a pithy moral or you will learn nothing, NOTHING, I say) which can be surprisingly meaningful and relevant in our modern society.

Although there were a few little stories that seemed to end rather abruptly, I still think that it’s a superfun e-book to read, and would make very good company during the daily commute! If you liked other children’s books for grownups like Avery Monsen’s All My Friends Are Dead or Adam Mansbach’s Go the F*** to Sleep, you will definitely enjoy Imaginary Friends!  Imaginary Friends: 26 Fables for the Kid in Us is priced at a mere US$4.99 (a real bargain!) and is available in a range of e-reader formats on AmazonKindle, Kobo and MPH Online.

Debs G rates Imaginary Friends: 8 out of 10 stars! 

If you’re still not convinced of the brilliance of this book, you can listen to excerpts from the book here:

Imaginary Friends – B is for Bertie Butterfly

Imaginary Friends – K is for Kip the Kingfisher read by Sheryl Khor

Or you can watch this little cute music video here:

ebook-smspaces-1aBy the way, this is Melanie’s second anthology of short stories written in the A-Z format, the first one being Small Spaces: An A-Z Story Squeeze, which is 26 stories about the thoughts and responses of people who live in constricting circumstances. This book is available on iBook and Kobo at the embarassingly low price of USD$0.99 so it’s worth checking out too!

1.I remember Melanie had a water-bottle with a cute cover that had a Little Twin Star print on it that was the height of fashion at the time. It called Janet. I only remember this because I was terribly envious of Janet, which I felt was a particularly imaginative name for a water-bottle. My water-bottle was called ‘Ellie’. No prizes for guessing what my water-bottle cover looked like.

2. The hardcore kind with multiple layers and buttons for secret compartments.

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