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05 October 2013 @ 12:22 am
I had a wonderful time with 2 friends this evening. Because of our conflicting schedules, we had to plan this dinner more than a month in advance, and we have already made an appointment for a month later. As much as I love spontaneous gatherings, they can sometimes be challenging; and I'm glad we make the effort to catch up, connect and continue to be part of each others' lives. Afterall, love and relationships keep us going, enrich our lives and help us be better people.
28 September 2013 @ 11:21 pm
Today is Aidan's first birthday, a real milestone for him and for us as well. The first twelve months was precious - watching him learn and marvel at the world which is so new to him, applauding the achievements which may seem little to adults but momentous for him, learning and grasping along the way bits of parenthood.

When people started asking how we were celebrating Aidan's first birthday, I started to wonder about expectations and if I was somehow going to shortchange him if I didn't have a big bash. But then I have never been any good at celebrations (the only big party I ever threw was my wedding) and I believe that the special day is really for ourselves and our families who has been present and will be present in Aidan's life for the many years to come.

So we had 2 birthday celebrations for him. An intimate one with my parents and close aunties when Aidan's Aunty Bu Bu was in Singapore. And another big gathering for the in laws, their friends and family.

On his actual birthday, WP made a hearty breakfast for me. It was very sweet for him to appreciate me as a mom on this day; we both reminisced the day I went into labor while looking through our random collection of Aidan's photos. We both had to work on Aidan's birthday, so he spent most of the day with my parents. They did all the things he enjoyed - a walk in the park, a stroll at the mall while giving him undiluted attention. And in the evening, I prepared some canvases and baby paint for him to work on his first art piece together. I thought his first artwork would be a good gift for him - and for us to look back on for the years to come. He had loads of fun with the paint; he loved it. The artwork was a mess though.

It was a simple day doing everything he enjoyed. I know he is not going to remember anything but I would, and there may come a point in his life when it is important for him to know. :)
19 May 2013 @ 11:21 pm
I just asked wp if he thinks one can be a happy person if he hates his job? His response was: "Isn't the answer obvious?" I suppose hate is too strong a word. I believe one can be happy with his life if he's feeling generally okay at work.

Casually chatting with the girls who gave me a sweet surprise visit (awww), I was reminded that there are many out there who do not like their jobs. It just struck me that I'm blessed to have a job that I'm loving. Curiously, I'm now motivated to put in more effort and work harder!

PS. I shall revive this blog. A 3 month hiatus is hardly acceptable!
27 February 2013 @ 11:08 am
I left STB with mixed feelings. My 5.5 years with STB had been wonderful. I met and learnt from a bunch of people who are capable with an inspiring pursuit for excellence at work. I made precious good friends. I had the humbling experience of being posted to China - a stint which gave me incredible exposure and another bunch of great friends. And I travelled: Miami, New York, New Delhi, Mumbai, Ho Chi Minh City, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Medan, KL, Shanghai, Beijing, Zhengzhou etc etc.

But much as I appreciate STB, I am happy to be moving on to something else. This Friday, I embark on the next chapter of my career. I'm a tad nervous. But more so, I'm excited at the opportunity to be doing something I think I would love and enjoy, to have greater autonomy and responsibilities at work, and to learn from the private sector. I have a good feeling about this. :)
03 December 2012 @ 07:00 pm
so i have been told that post delivery, a mother would be extremely weak after the traumatic labour and susceptible to illnesses and terrible ailments if she does not take care of herself for the first few months afterward. for us, the first month after delivery is also known as "confinement". according to many older folks, during this period of time, mom is not to shower, touch water, get out of the house, use the fan and air-conditioner, not drink plain water, not drink cold drinks, and eat only confinement food which typically involves alot of ginger and vinegar.

it is common to engage a "confinement lady" for the first month. this confinement expert would help the new mom take care of baby and with all associated chores including cooking confinement meals, washing and cleaning etc. for me, my confinement help was my mom. i moved to my parent's home for a month so that my mom could help me for this month.

i picked and chose which of these "rules" to follow. i tried my best not to shower at all after the delivery, and lasted 10 full days! even after 10 days, i did not wet or shampoo my hair. i only did wash my hair after 3 weeks, and with herbs used for showering during confinement bought from the medical hall. the herbs actually smelt pretty pleasant. by then, my hair was a disgusting mess and pretty damaged.

i was told to wear rubber / plastic gloves so that my hands would not touch water, but i didnt follow that. i had to wash the milk bottles and breast pump parts, and wash my face too. so it would be really unreasonable not to come into contact with water?

i tried not to drink water. it wasnt difficult, because my mom would cook red date or longan tea for me everyday and it was really delicious!

during the first month, it was unbearably hot for me. it seemed i was sweating non-stop, and i drank cold water, used the fan and air-condition even more than usual.

i also went out a few times. but truthfully, my limbs were weak and i felt tired after some walking in the mall.

as for confinement meals, i loved all the food which my mom cooked for me!

mom was a fantastic help, allowing me much needed rest in the day. and the great thing is that she seemed to derive much joy from looking after Aidan.

i thought the first month of confinement went really well, though it was frustrating, confusing and tiring at times. there was so much we had to learn about giving care to a baby, and we have since gotten used to criticism because there is no pleasing the well-meaning grandparent, relative, or any stranger on the street on how we are taking care of baby Aidan. but that is another blog post altogether.
08 October 2012 @ 11:54 pm
As I looked down at Aidan feeding from my breast just moments ago, I'm suddenly incredibly humbled by the fact that this little baby is now surviving and growing solely on milk produced from my body. It really is an amazing feeling.
02 October 2012 @ 09:29 am
i delivered baby Aidan on 28 September. Was estimated to pop on 10 October, so he came 1.5 weeks earlier.

it happened that the 7 days prior to 28 September, we ran the baby errands which we had been procrastinating, like fixing the car seat, packing the hospital bag, and shortlisting 5 chinese names! we also went for hair cut/wash the day before.

on 25 September evening, i noticed a tiny spot of dried blood on my underwear. i self-diagnosed it as too much walking and pressure exerted to my pelvis area. on 26 September, everything was fine, but again, at night, the blood appeared, this time a little more. i decided to continue monitoring and to call my gynae if needed. i was on leave 27 and 28 September. we ran errands on 27 September, going to the hospital for WP's checkups, going for haircut/wash, baking a banana cake! it slipped my mind, and i told myself that i would call my gynae the next day to ask about the insistent show of blood.

that night, i couldnt sleep. there was an almost painful pressure on my pelvic area when i lied down, and i got up a few times to ease the pain. it got quite bad, so i went to sit on the sofa to sleep. the pain came and went. i walked around to ease the pressure whenever it came. i wondered if i was experiencing labour contractions, but brushed that thought aside as the pain wasnt that terrible, and it did go away when i started to walk around. throughout the night, i passed motion 3 times. and the sensation started coming closer and closer. from 30 minutes intervals, to 5 minutes intervals. i was getting quite concerned, and it was already 430am then. i finally decided to call my gynae close to 5am, when i spotted blood again, this time more than the previous few days. an auntie picked up the 24hour hotline, and transfered me to the doctor's private line. i am very sure she was asleep, but she sounded quite normal. she asked if it was contractions, and i said i wasnt sure. she told me to go to the hospital to get myself checked.

so at 5am, i went to nudge the husband awake. i told him about the pains, and he groggily advised me to stay at home that day to rest. when i said that i should go to the hospital now, he sprang up in a hurry. the traffic was light at the wee hours. we were singing a hymn on the way. i was still convinced that i wasnt in labor, and that the nurse would ask me to come back another day. however, when we checked into the delivery suite to explain the situation, the nurse told us that i was in labour and would deliver in the next 24 hours. i questioned her "how do you know?", and i think she gave me the -.- look.

the contractions came and went, but they were bearable. the nurse asked if i wanted the epidural, and i wasnt sure when i should have it. i thought of waiting for my gynae to appear to ask her. and the pain really wasnt that bad at all. but wp encouraged me to have it earlier, so i decided why not.

once i had the injection, i was hit by a wave of drowsiness. i guess it was because i havent slept at all, and i was now numb from the discomfort that kept me awake. my gynae came to break my water-bag, and she was pleased that i was 2.5 cm dilated without her having to do anything. i wasnt sure what all that meant. she estimated that i would deliver between 3-6pm, and that i would dilate 1 cm per hour.

i went to sleep from 7am - noon, waking up in between on and off and the nurse came to check on me. by 1230pm, the nurse said that she could see the crown of the baby's head and that the baby is coming soon. i said ok, but went back to sleep.

at 130pm, i woke up and decided to start pushing the baby out. truthfully, it wasn't painful at all (of course, because of the epidural!), but it sure took alot of strength! i imagined it as taking the biggest dump in my life, and pushed with all my might. wp was witnessing the whole thing and i was quite embarrassed as i think it must be quite a gross sight. so i told him not to look!

suddenly, the nurse asked me to stop pushing, and wait for my gynae to come before giving the final push! i was really really annoyed. by that time, the baby was having a momentum of his own, and with every contraction, he was closer to be out. but i had to hold him back! i kept wondering where on earth is my gynae!!! when she swept into the delivery suite, i gave 2 big pushes, and the baby was out! the time was then 2.40pm. she asked WP, "where's your camera!?" he was in shock and excited at the same time that everything was happening so fast and started digging into the bag for the camera. then my gynae said, "nevermind, use your phone also can la!"

at the back of my mind, i was thinking, that's it?? then i said a silent prayer to thank God for the painless and quick delivery. i was back to feeling drowsy, but i couldn't sleep yet. the gynae had to pull out the placenta and cord blood. she also had to sew me up, which was very uncomfortable and painful because by then, the epidural effect had started to wear off. she increased the dosage of epidural, and continued sewing me up. she asked why i am so drowsy, and i had no answer. someone put the baby on my chest. his eyes were wide open and huge, and he kept staring at me. but i was so sleepy i just wanted to sleep. so i said "hmm. ok." then they took him away.

the nurses started to push me into the ward. i wanted a single-bed ward, but there were none available, so they put me in a double-bed ward. i sent a few messages, then went to sleep.

though WP and i have been praying for a painless delivery, deep down in my heart there is always a small doubt because i can never imagine how childbirth can be painless. but what i experienced was truly a blessed and painless delivery which amazes me!

it may be more memorable for WP because he witnessed the whole process. i just remember feeling very very sleepy the whole time!

18 September 2012 @ 09:37 pm
i have a mini acne outbreak. my fingers are so swollen, my ring dont fit anymore. apart from slippers, i only have 1 pair of shoes that still fit. my face is very round, as with the rest of my body actually. i've outgrown some of the maternity clothes i bought. and i get moody sometimes.

but otherwise, all's good! i'm week 36 now. 3 more weeks to go.

11 September 2012 @ 11:24 pm
1. eating!

going to somewhere new to eat! Malaysia food street at RWS. the food was okay. not too bad, but not somewhere i would make a special trip down for. nevertheless, it was a happy dinner for me because i love trying out new eating places. :D on another trip, we also went with my parents to Old Airport Road Hawker Centre. it was another lovely lunch. I LOVE the wanton noodles. SLURP.

2. helping out!

wp and i have been wanting to help out one way or another to those less fortunate, and finally (after alot of encouragement/talk from his dad i must say) we decided on the charity to contribute to and contacted them to find out how we can help. we made a trip down after buying some stuff. i must say it was my first time purchasing so much from the supermarket! thank goodness for my mum in law who works at NTUC, and got us help to pack all these items, fuss-free. we will be making another trip down in the next few weeks, to contribute some goodies for their mid-autumm festival celebrations.

3. having a good laugh!

at The Hossan Leong Show. it was way better than i expected, and we really enjoyed it! it was also nice to bump into one of our favorite couples - Huihui and Bertram!

4. home-baked chocolate cake!

it was pretty successful, and we had it over a movie at home, on Sunday night. Perfect end to the weekend / start to the week.

As my discomfort grew last week with acne outbreak, backache and some sleepless nights, i'm happy and grateful for these perk-me-ups!

25 August 2012 @ 12:08 pm
Last wk, I chanced upon this pack of cookie mix at Cold Storage going on a great discount. I think it was $5.2, after a 24% discount. And I just had to get it!

Turns out our Saturday lunch appointment is canceled, so I had time to try out the cookie mix.

wp and I baked together; he did the mixing and washing up. :-) the cookies turned out really yummy! Texture was great and it wasn't too sweet. Can't wait to let our moms try them. :-)

I'm pretty lazy when it comes to baking, and tend to go for the "pre- mixes" which are usually fool proof. But I'm determined to put in more effort, and will try baking egg tarts next!

Afterall, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. And this is surely true for my man! Doesn't hurt that I love pottering around our little kitchen.