Conquering Timezone’s Maxi Claw

My daughter Sam and I love UFO Catcher/crane/claw machines, and we have a pretty good track record when it comes to snagging toys.

I dunno if I gained special powers when I became a dad, because I never used to win on these machines. Most recently, we conquered Timezone’s Maxi Claw, which I joked before would be the pinnacle of our career since we’ve already won toys on all sorts of crane machines.

You can bet Sam was thrilled when I snagged Piglet. It took two tries, so I only spent P58 to get the toy.

I know that I jokingly told Sam that we can already retire after conquering the Maxi Claw, but we’re having too much fun. After all, as my wife Ellen puts it, it’s “our thing.”

Onward to the next claw machine!

Kid-friendly browsing via

My daughter Sam was happy when we created a account for her.

This is a free browser that’s customized for kids. It offers tons of online content (including games, videos and music) that’s already been pre-selected for kids by parents and teachers, so that your child can experience the same freedom adults do while browsing, without you having to worry that they’ll go to an inappropriate site.

Thanks to Jerome Gotangco for the heads up — found out about KidZui from him after he replied to my tweet about Sam catching the big fish in Club Penguin.

Sam and Club Penguin

I created a new Club Penguin account for my daughter Sam, because it’s been a long while since she last played.

She had fun playing, and if you have a kid, I’d highly recommend this Flash-based massively multiplayer online game, which Disney purchased in August 2007.

Club Penguin is free to play, but paid membership is required if you’d like to purchase clothes and access other exclusive content.

Here’s a screenshot of one of the mini-games Sam loves playing, Gone Fishing.

And here’s a wallpaper.

Sam goes to Luneta

Today was Sam’s first visit to Rizal Park, still better known as Luneta.

Ellen decided that it was time for Sam to experience Rizal Park for herself, as she only reads about it in her books and actually had the impression that it’s somewhere far away (“Sa probinsya ba tayo pupunta, Mommy?”).

Turned out that it was also a chance for me to relive my childhood, as I brought them to the Children’s Playground, which was one of my favorite places when I was Sam’s age.

It’s somewhat strange to see that around 30 years later, the place seemed exactly the same, except it’s a lot dirtier now.

I hadn’t thought of the Children’s Playground in a long, long time, but seeing it again brought back vivid memories, and I marveled not only at the fact that these fixtures were still intact 30 years later, but also that they were exactly as I remembered them — except the area and the statues seemed much bigger back then. Guess everything seemed bigger when I was a small kid.

Here are more photos.

After going to the Children’s Playground, we walked across Rizal Park to go to the monument. By the way, you’ll find lots of stray cats in Luneta.

Here’s a photo of two cats sleeping in the picnic area of the Children’s Playground.

And here’s a big cat I spotted while we were going to the Philippine map area.

While you can’t tell from this photo, that’s a map of the Philippines behind Ellen and Sam — it’s a replica of the Philippine islands.

Kite flying is also a favorite park activity, so we bought one for Sam from one of the vendors here.

Here’s a video of Sam’s first time to fly a kite.

Here’s a pic of me and Sam posing in front of the monument, just in time for the beautiful sunset. Wondering why Sam looks upset? She wanted to keep flying her kite.