SIN – PER Business Class with kids (Red eye flight)

So as some of you might remember, our last attempt on a red eye flight was last year during our return flight from Tokyo to Singapore. We landed in Singapore at 7am and were honestly worse for wear. Thankfully we were on home ground and could recuperate in our own home and on our own terms but it was certainly not a good day :p

So this time I was really hesitant to even consider the idea of a red eye flight at the start of the trip. What’s worse is the fact that the flight lands at 5am which means the cabin would be prepped for landing by 4am. Lights would be switched on, announcements would be made, seats would have to be upright and yeah you know the drill :/ But given our itinerary constraints which would ideally see us making our 4 hour road trip drive into Margaret River at the start of our trip and preferably reaching MR at 2pm rather than 7pm (during winter). We had to bite the bullet and figure some way through it.

Joel was actually very garang about just figuring it out and making it (the sleep) work. But given that Bella didn’t sleep a wink on the red eye Tokyo flight and Joel was a zombie after. I was not risking it and letting a zombie drive us for 4 hours. My solution? Redeeming business class tickets all round and hoping that this means everyone would be able to fall asleep in a slightly more comfy environment.

Of course the thought of bringing 2 kids into business class at 12 midnight scared the hell out of me. What if they didn’t sleep and caused a ruckus, disturbing every other passenger in the process. But I have to say, fear unfounded. In fact if there was any flight to put kids in business class, a red eye is definitely it. I don’t know about babies and really little kids but a 3 and 5 year old who have a pretty fixed and stable sleep schedule would do just fine.

So how did our flight go?

The kids were strangely peckish at 12midnight so instead of having our meals for breakfast at 3am. We decided to ask for the meals to be served after take off (about 1am) and let them sleep throughout.




Bella dozed off as soon as the plane took off at midnight and totally missed her meal service. She didn’t get up until almost 5am when she sensed the flurry of activities around her. A stark difference from her Tokyo red night so mummy’s efforts to ensure that the adults especially the driver would get sleep too, worked!



Jah, on the other hand seemed determined to enjoy the ‘perks’ of his flight. He stayed up till his meal was served. Thoroughly enjoyed the starter of crossiants and fruits and then was too full for the fish congee main that was served after. He even noticed that real cutlery, China and tablecloth were used. Good spotting Jah! The boy went to sleep straight after and didn’t wake until we landed. šŸ™‚


While our flight (A330) did not offer a full flat bed as it was a regional product. The kids did just fine on the flat recline beds as they were much shorter and it was almost like a flat bed for them.

Joel and I got up very comfortably half an hour before landing to freshen up and we were able to keep the kids sleeping till the last minute which minimised any crankiness at being dragged out of ‘bed’ at 5am.

Oh and if there is 1 tip I have for travelling with young kids on a red eye..it would be to bring a toddler carrier if your child still uses one or doesn’t mind being in one. No child is going to willingly walk from a plane through to immigration and then to the luggage belt at 5am. We back carried both kids from the plane all the way to the arrival hall on our toddler sized Tulas and it was a hands free and stress free process all round. šŸ™‚


Now hopefully our return evening flight will be as stress free too šŸ˜”

Day 1 –Ā Day 1 Rockingham, Busselton Jetty (Margaret River Roadtrip)

Day 2 – Wonky Windmill Farm and Orchard Picking (Margaret River Roadtrip)Ā 

Day 3 –Ā Margaret River Farmer’s Market and Yallingup Maze (Margaret River Roadtrip)

Day 4 Whale Watching Cruise and Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse (Margaret River Roadtrip)

Day 5 Ngilgi Caves, Canal Rocks and Laurence Wines (Margaret River Roadtrip)

JahBella’s Mummy

Tips when booking on AirBnb

We have stayed at a few Airbnb homes over the last couple of years and most have been absolutely lovely. I basically scour the Airbnb portal for something in the area I want, at the price range I’m comfortable with and most photos are exactly as the house is (unlike some hotel photos shown on websites) so I know exactly what I’m getting. My main criteria is usually to ensure that the house is child friendly with toys for the kids so that I don’t have to pack to much of our own and know that the kids will still be entertained when we are at ‘home’.




However I am starting to realise (especially during our recent trip) that there are actually a few things which I should be looking out for when shortlisting my options apart from just looking at the area, price range and how child friendly the place is. So here are some things I would definitely start looking out/ taking note before I make my future bookings.

1) Look at the security deposit amount

When shortlisting or deciding on a listing, don’t just look at the per night rate or the total price (inclusive of service charge and cleaning fee). Take note of the security deposit amount that you might potentially have to pay if there are any damages or ‘disagreements’. The amount varies from listing to listing (decided by the owner) and is not charged upfront. It is held by Airbnb as a middleman unless and until the owner decides to claim against it then Airbnb would inform you on the claimed amount and get your agreement to deduct it from your card. While we don’t expect to damage anything when we lease a place, you might think twice or it might help you to decide between two listings if one was requesting for an extremely high security deposit (higher risk I suppose?)

2) Read the listing carefully and ask all your questions before committing

Just because your previous experience with a listing in a particular country had a hairdryer, a washer, a dryer, a heater etc, doesn’t mean it is a standard issue for all listings so make sure you ask. Dryers and heaters are a must in winter in my opinion and make sure you find out how many heaters there are, especially if there are several rooms in the house. You know what you need in order for your family to live comfortably so don’t feel shy to ask those questions.

3) Gauge the responsiveness

While it helps to read the reviews, I realise that the level of responsiveness of the host is normally quite a good indication of their commitment or ‘service level’. Also if you are having trouble contacting the host and it is less than 48 hours to your confirmed booking, you can reach out to Airbnb for their help. They will attempt to contact the host (which works wonders) or help with a rebooking if the host fails to respond. Note that is partly what you are paying Airbnb a service charge for.

4) House rules are important

Yes it is important to adhere to the house rules so that you won’t lose your security deposit but they are important not just for that reason. While it might be a pain to see a long list of house rules (what not to do, when to take out the rubbish, what to do before you leave and the list goes on). I generally found that the listings with more elaborate house rules were in better condition and were nicer places to live in while you basically just feel your way around those that were very laxed about their rules.

So yes we have had some awesome experiences and some not that great experiences on Airbnb. Will we continue booking through them? Yes probably, depending on the country we are heading to. Honestly some countries are more conducive for Airbnb while we are better off at hotels for some others. But I will definitely be referring to the above ‘tips’ for my future bookings. Hope they come in handy for you too šŸ™‚

JahBella’s Mummy

Space-saving and Chill-out Furniture

We have finally settled into our new home and it was truly a tedious process. From trying to sort out defects with the developer to getting all our ‘suppliers’and purchase deliveries lined up perfectly because we didn’t hire an ID or contractor. And then dealing with the big move + massive unpacking whilst handling a very sick toddler. Ā I am glad to say that we lived to tell the tale!!!

So what better way to ‘celebrate’ then to share some of our favourite pieces in our new home that we can’t wait to enjoy! šŸ™‚

Dining TableĀ 

One of the first few pieces of furniture that we bought, was our dining table. We were really concerned about the amount of space that we would have for our dining table + sofa so we were alittle conservative when it came to the length of our dining table. However we were really glad that we decided to choose benches as the choice seating as it is truly a space saver! We especially loved the rounded edges around both the table and the benches! One less thing to worry about with the kids.

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Dining Table from Star Living

Balcony Swing

If I have to be honest, this favourite piece actually belongs to Jah. In fact I nearly had to can the idea of having aĀ rocking chair (which you will see later) because we got him this swing. But I can’t say I’m complaining because the kids are really enjoying it!

 

Transformer Bench

Our next favourite piece is also an outdoor balcony piece. Our Transformer Bench which can be folded into a bench or opened to become a table with seating. We love the idea that it could be a space saver but also provide us with additional seating when more people come over for dinner. Also just a nice piece to have if you want to chill out in the balcony with a cheese platter and wine! šŸ™‚

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Teak wood Transformer Bench from Widharja

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Yes its the same piece!

Rocking Chair

I promise that this will be the last balcony piece! Yes I know it seems all our favourite pieces are in the balcony :p What can I say..that was the theme we were going for..lots of spaces to lounge and chill as a family! This addition to our balcony came only after we were sure that there was enough space leftover from Jah’sĀ swing and the transformer bench. I just could not resist how comfortable and ‘breathable’ this rocking chair is and the little neck pillow attached to it, was just perfect!

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My own personal rocking chair…:)

Jah’s Army Bunk Bed

Another space saver piece that allowed us to have additional play space within Jah’s bedroom. His modular low bunk bed allows him to sleep on the upper deck (which is slightly lower than a regular double decker) and play in the lower deck, complete with army themed tent and drapes. We were initially quite concerned about him sleeping on the upper deck but we got him to test out the type of stairs/ ladder (yes there are a few variations) that he was more comfortable with. Lets hope that this piece will break his co-sleeping habit!

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Army themed modular low bunk bed from iBenma

Beanbags

You might have also noticed the bean bag in the above photo. Yes moreĀ chill-out furniture. Check out our previous post for our thoughts on theĀ Doob Bean Bags –Ā link here.

So there we have it, some of our favourite space-saving & chill-out pieces!

I guess now its time for me to go enjoy some cheese and wine on one of our chill-out furniture before the rest of the family starts hogging them!

Thanks for reading! šŸ™‚

JahBella’s Mummy

 

Doob Bean Bags – Because our butts deserve to be pampered

As we started to conceptualize how we wanted our new home to look and what kind of furniture to buy. We were very clear on 1 thing and that was that we wanted lots of areas/ furniture where we could lounge and chill in. We knew right from the start that bean bags were a must have and we wanted Doob Bags!

We have seen Doob Bags at a couple of events and even at the Future World exhibition at the Art Science Musuem. That was where Jah declared that he must have this bean bag! Well son, mummy is one step ahead of you! :p

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One of the reason and perhaps the main reason why we chose Doob Bag over other bean bags in the market is the fact that it is plushy and comfortable without being too softĀ and deflated. There are definitely ‘softer’ bean bags out there compared to Doob Bag but somehow they retain the indent of your body and in my opinion will likely not last very long. I would hate to sit in a super deflated bean bag in 6 months time.

Our Doob bag on the other hand may feel alittle firm to the touch but trust me, it is super comfortable once you land yourĀ butt on it. Only problem is you might never want to get up!

The Doob bag comes in different shapes and sizes so you can select the one which works for your space or purpose. You can also choose the fabric (polyester, synthetic leather or rayon). We went with the polyester fabric because it is water resistant which is perfect when you have little kids that are spill monsters.

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Comparison Chart from http://www.getdoob.com

We chose the rectangular shaped Plopsta’ in Large Size. You may think that a rectangular shaped beanbag will only allow you to lie flat on it or use it when propped against a wall.

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Can we just use this as a bed and save on an actual bed? :p

However we chose it for its VERSATILITY. Check out some of theĀ different positions you can use it in!

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Time for a nap?

 

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Or just to chill

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Getting on my horse!

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Mummy! Can you pass me my iPad please?

 

The one dilemma we did have was what colour or colour combination to choose but the awesome thing was also the fact that there were so many colours to choose from that you are bound to find something that suits your decor. We went with an Ash Caribbean and an Ash Apple which is half grey and half blue/ green and it was a perfect match for our home colour scheme!

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An Ash Caribbean for the living area

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An Ash Apple for Jah’s roomĀ and another position to use šŸ™‚

We also love the fact that the Doob bag is a double-layered design which means no little bean bag pellets spilling out and you can remove the cover for cleaning. The bean bag also comes with a 1-year guarantee and free delivery within Singapore (so no lugging beanbags in your car boot from the store).

I am super grateful for the Doob Bag in Jah’s room! It has become my trusty companion when I need to put Jah to bed..no more sitting on the floor or on thin mattresses…I can lounge comfortably while he falls asleep in his bunk bed…:D

Disclaimer: JahBella received 1 Large Plopsta’ Doob Bag for the purpose of this review. All additional Doob Bags were purchased. No monetary compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

JahBella’s Mummy