Thursday, December 31, 2020

Goodbye 2020! Hello 2021!

We made it through 2020! 

A year of Covid-19 flew past just like that! It has not been an easy year with the prolonged staying home, home based learning, working from home, safety measures, restrictions and masks! As a family, we also battled a week of chicken pox with the girls and another month of my Tuberculosis. Despite all, I thank God for watching over us in the times of pandemic. 2020 has certainly taught us important life lessons!


What 2020 taught me? 


1. Importance of health 

I'm thankful to be in Singapore where healthcare is prioritised and people could feel safe despite all the chaos. After experiencing knee pain, Covid-19, chicken pox and Tuberculosis through the year, I've certainly treasuring the importance of good health. I pray that 2021 will be a better year with all the vaccinations. I give thanks for God's protection and healing upon us.


2. Strengthening faith

It felt different not to have physical church services. There were virtual services, Sunday school, bible study and cell group but they cannot replace in person sessions. Personally, I find it slightly harder to focus with the girls around in the home environment. Nonetheless, I'm extremely thankful for church effort in keeping our faith growing!

Thanks to the support of my dearest sisters-in-christ, I'm learning to do my quiet time more consistently - about 8 months for the record. Eversince I stepped into the workforce, it had always be a challenge to maintain daily quiet time. There were times that I do my devotions daily but there were times when I neglected it. Curcuit Breaker and TB has prompted me to quiet down and surrender myself - to slow down my pace, reflect more and pray more. I'm thankful that I'm grown to set aside some time to spend with God. I'm definitely not perfect and still a work in progress.

 

3. Treasure family time

The few months of staying home have helped us learn how to treasure family time and be patient towards each other! While there are more fights and tears, we also had more fun and laughter. We built more LEGO, watch more shows, danced, laughed more than any other year. I sometimes wondered if the girls, especially Emmalyn, had played too much. We need to do more school work!

The months away from our parents also make us miss them more. I'm so thankful that they coped well with Covid-19 too! Thank you Brother for taking good care of them. I'm also thankful for many supportive and caring family members and friends.



4. Treasure work 

It's an unusual year at work but I'm thankful to be able to continue to work. I treasure the responsibilities, recognition, flexibility, trust and understanding that my boss has given me. While things are busy, I'm thankful that it has not been frustrating. I'm also thankful for the opportunities that the social media brings. 


5. Efforts paid off! Yay to straighter teeth! 

After a year of putting on invisalign, my teeth are alot more straighter now! It takes alot of discipline to brush and wear the aligners. I'm towards the end of the journey and I'm so glad that I decided to jump into this! It's one of my best investment in myself! Of course, there are endless enhancement we can do to make ourselves good better but most importantly we need to look good on the inside too! 


6. Take care of myself more! 

This is my yearly resolution. We can only give more when we are filled and happy. I spent alot of time doing things for the family and I'm always left with little time to myself. Or rather time with the family is so precious and I enjoy them that I chose to give up some of my personal times. I still need to work harder on my beauty care. Of course, meetups with friends, salon or shopping trips are definitely much needed!


7. Teach and learn with the girls

Now that the girls are older, I find that it's less tiring physically as they can do a fair amount of things themselves. However, there are alot more to teach in terms of their emotions, thoughts, characters, value and most importantly faith. I constantly remind myself to focus on their heart while wishing that they will do well academically. It isn't easy especially on school days when the time with the girls are short. I pray that we would spend that extra effort to build close relationship with the girls while teaching and learning with them. 


 Let's look back at 2020!


January

It was the start of PG2 and Primary 1 for Avalyn and Emmalyn respectively.



February

 We celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary and Chinese New Year!




March

What's the odds of both girls having chicken pox during the Covid-19 period? Thankfully, they were pretty cheerful despite the itch.

 

April

Circuit Breaker - when work from home and home based learning rolled into one. It was pretty intense. Thank God that we pulled through it!



Thankful to be able to celebrate another birthday with my love ones at home and virtually too!


May

Avalyn turned 3 years old. We had our first virtual party with friends over a magic show and a mini celebration with just the 4 of us. 

 

My 3 children sang "世上只有妈妈好" for me for the first time!


June

We were out of Circuit Breaker and celebrated Father's day together with the family!


July 

Hubby got a new ride "Blue"!


Emmalyn had her ballet examination via recording.


August

Emmalyn turned 7 years old!


September/October

I fell sick in mid-sept, diagnosed with Tuberculosis and finally got well after a month! 

November 

Recovered in time to celebrate Hubby's birthday!

 

School holiday started and we had a fair amount of activities for the girls! Thankful to be able to spend more time with them after being sick for a long time.


 

 

December 

I'm thankful to be able to catch up with family and friends before the year ends. Glad that we were able to meet up a few times this year despite all the restrictions.

 

The girls were blessed with so many gifts and love! I tried my best to remind them to be thankful and not take them for granted.


No travel this year because of Covid-19 so Snow City is the closest to a Winter Holiday!

We wrapped up the year with a staycation!

 

What a roller-coastering year! Thank God for his protection through the year. 


For 2021, I pray that I would work harder to be a woman after God's heart. I pray for greater love, wisdom, time management and faith to juggle family, work and life. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Convenient cleaning with Dyson Digital Slim™ Fluffy Extra

Dyson cordless vacuum cleaners are true game changer! 

Cleaning has became easier when I switched from those small yet still bulky wired vacuum cleaner 4 years ago. Without the wire running around, it is faster to vacuum the house. It's also easier to spot clean as there is zero set up required. 


Which brand of cordless vacuum cleaner should I get?


Enough said, I believe many can appreciate a cordless device but the first question - "Which brand should I get?"

After using Dyson V8 Fluffy for 4 years, I can confidently say "Dyson"! Our V8 Fluffy has served us really well. In between, we only had a change of battery pack and it is still working like new. With its leading technology and continuous research & development, you can be rest assured that you will be getting the best features out of a vacuum cleaner! 

Powerful 3-in-1 multi-functional cleaning, advanced filtration, quality, style and convenience all in ONE!


Which model of Dyson vacuum cleaner should I get?


Next would be "which Dyson vacuum model should I get'?

There are currently Dyson V8 Slim™ Fluffy, V10, V11 and Digital Slim™. Within the model, there are further variations. Hence, it can get a little confusing to some. Here are some questions that you can help to identify which model to get:

1. What's your budget?

If you are looking for the most pocket friendly model, look into V8 Slim™. Look out for sale like the upcoming 11.11 promotion!

2. How big is the space that you are using it for?

If you are living in a space bigger around 2 bedroom size or smaller, a 40 mins of running time - V8 Slim™ and Digital Slim™ would work well. If you have a bigger space, V10 or V11 with a 60 mins of running time might work better for you. Alternatively, you can get Digital Slim™ and purchase an extra battery pack. V11 also comes with the click-in battery system for extended running time. 

3. Who is using it? 

It would also be good to consider the user. For me, the old V8 Fluffy (2.6 kg) is manageable for cleaning the floor and surfaces. However, it requires some strength for me to move it up the stairs and clean the higher spots. V8 Slim™ Fluffy is 2.1kg, V10 Fluffy is 2.5kg and V11 Absolute is 2.97kg.

Dyson Digital Slim™ Fluffy is 1.9kg. When I first hold on to the new Digital Slim™, I could feel the great difference in weight from my old V8 Fluffy. It was a whopping 0.7kg and I have no problem flipping it up in the air quickly to clean spots that are beyond my reach.


Dyson Digital Slim™ Fluffy Extra


Dyson Digital Slim™ Fluffy is a remarkable powerhouse! 

While it was 20% smaller and 30% lighter than V11, the suction power remains. The Digital Slim™ features a new light and robust brush bar, giving a compact and lower profile cleaner head for tight spaces and improved edge pick up. 

It uses a specifically designed motor from our range of Dyson Hyperdymium™ motors that produces the powerful airflow found in all Dyson machines; 11 scrolled cyclones, unique to this machine with greater separation efficiency for less energy whilst ensuring the capture of fine dust. The Dyson Digital Slim™ vacuum also achieves 99.97% filtration of particles as small as 0.3 microns while maintaining no loss of suction.


It's no doubt a powerful lightweight 3-in-1 cleaner: It cleans floors, mattresses and hard-to-reach areas with different attachments. I love that the brush bar, clear bin, combined pre/post motor filter, and light-up crevice tool are all washable. 


Its whole machine filtration captures 99.97% of microscopic particles as small as 0.3 microns, expelling clean air. With an airtight gasket around the cyclone assembly and a pressurised rubber seal around the advanced filter, the whole system is fully sealed – preventing dust from leaking back into the air. 


Like V11, it also has an LCD screen that shows the cleaning mode, and remaining run time, as well as offering filter maintenance reminders and blockage reports. This lightweight powerhouse run for up to 40 minutes in eco mode on hard floors, and up to 5 minutes in boost mode.  The battery is also swappable, providing up to 80 minutes run time in eco mode.  

Besides the light weight, I personally find that Dyson Digital Slim™ Fluffy Extra has a good grip. The circumference of the handle has been made smaller allowing for an easier and more comfortable grip for people with smaller hands like mine.  The shape of the trigger has also been contoured for greater comfort for a finger.

I'm so in love with this new powerful help to our family!

******

The Dyson Digital Slim™ vacuum is now available, priced up to SGD849 at www.dyson.com.sg and Dyson Demo stores at Dyson Service Centre & Demo Store – Capitol Singapore, Dyson Demo Zone – Westgate. 


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Thank God! It's Tuberculosis!

What started off as a simple sore throat turned out otherwise. After battling cough, bloated stomach, diaherrea and fatigue for 3 weeks, I finally managed to get a referral to specialist on my 2nd visit to polyclinic. My appointment was supposed to be a week later but I can't make it so requested for a reschedule. Thank God for his protection, I got a next day appointment at the specialist clinic as there was last minute cancellation. Doctor gave me a number of blood test, ECG, urine test and x ray. The x ray result turned out bad and he called me to admit to the hospital that Wednesday night.  


After settling dinner and some chores, I bid the family goodbye and headed to NUH to admit myself. Everything happened so fast after I registered. I was inserted iv plug and quickly put to a series of examinations and ultrasound. The earlier x ray result shows that my left lung was 80% filled with fluid and due the expansion of my lung, my heart was pushed to the right and slightly twisted. I had to do a procedure to insert a draining tube to drain the fluid at the A&E. The procedure was traumatising. I was given local anesthesia and some painkiller injection but it was still very painful. I could feel the doctor poking the tube to the side of my left chest and I cried so badly throughout the 15 mins.

After the insertion of the chest tube, I was sent to an isolation ward because I was considered a possible contagious case. I was eventually tested negative for Covid-19. I also did the tuberculosis phlegm test which came back negative. 

Although the insertion was a horrible experience, I felt less breathless after the drainage. My heartbeat rate also reduced. I feel physically better. The first few days were all about draining my fluid from my left lung. The fluid was sent for testing to identify the cause of all these and it took days for the results to be out. I was given antibiotics and painkillers. 

It was worrying as the draining was blocked half way. But thankful, it continued to drain after the doctor did a flush. 


But guess the most worrying part is the cause of having fluid in my lung. The word "Cancer" popped up right at the first call to get me admit to hospital. Doctor didn't know why and it could be because of infection, pneumonia, tuberculosis or worst case cancer. The CT scan also showed that I've something at my ovary but it wasn't a big surprise as I've PCOS. I was arrange to see a gynae after I discharge. All I could do is to pray and ask people around to pray for me. 

I was deisolated for a day and went back to isolation in negative pressure isolation ward because they found TB in my fluid. On Monday morning, I did a procedure to drain the fluid and get sample for biopsy. Doctor said it's very likely TB.

I was given local anesthesia (alot more) and painkiller so was awake throughout the hr plus. The professor did her work behind a green screen. I could feel many pokes but mostly pressure and suction. I could hear the professor saying to the junior doctor, don't think it's an easy thing, it's very complicated. I was taken aback and kept praying throughout that hr plus. It was yet another traumatising experience. Thankfully things went well.

I came back to the ward feeling ok until suddenly I couldn't catch my breathe for a few minutes when I tried to sit up. I got better but was weak the rest of the afternoon. My chest tube was replaced with a bigger one and attached to a suction machine. Dr came back to check on me and shared that the good news is it was Tuberculosis. There was no signs of cancer. It was a great relief as I'm still young and it is curable. I was given TB medications - alot of them. And need to take them for 6 months. 


After 7 nights at the hospital, about 3 litre of fluid out of my left lung, multiple scans, alot of prayers, I'm finally back at home. I thank God for his protection. I could have found out my Tuberculosis much later and things might be worst. I had to go through all diagnosis and treatment alone. Honestly, I was really scared but I could only just pray for courage and strength. I was much alone but God is always there for me to hold me through. 

Hubby had been really great at taking care of the kids since the start when I got sick a month back and even helped to deliver food at last minute because the food at the hospital was horrible. With his new dishwasher purchase, he can run the household except cooking.

Thankful to many who pray for me over whatapps, videocalls and keep checking on me. Bosses and colleagues have been very understanding towards my conditions too. So glad that my parents who didn't really know the full story managed to visit and asked me to pray to Jesus. Daddy even came with 2 photos of Jesus. I'm thankful that they have Jesus in their hearts.

Thankful that my condition wasn't contagious as the TB virus was on the lining of my lung. Thus family should be safe. It wonder how lucky am I to get this as it's not easy to get TB. Anyway, if you are coughing for more than 3 weeks and have breathless, do see a doctor.

Stay safe all! 
 

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Yoon Salon: 5 WFH Hairdo Ideas Ft. My Daughter

For those of you who have been working from home during this Covid-19 period, how are things going for you?

Unknowingly, it has been almost 6 months since I started working from home. It has been mostly good so far but some days can be rather overwhelming for me. Now that the girls are back to school, I find myself overly engrossed in work and take lesser breaks. In general, I feel as though I have been working non-stop, throughout the day and night. It has happened so many times and I always tend to end my day feeling drained with super messy locks! Furthermore, not needing to get out also means you don't need to dress up. On most days, I just had to remind myself to comb my tresses before jumping onto a zoom call.


To spark things up, I randomly asked Emma to help style myself. up. She jumped on the idea and was super excited! She happily took up my challenge to do up 5 working from home ‘dos like a master stylist without much help from me. She enjoys playing around with different styles. At times, she does a better job than me!

1. Pig Tails

She started off with my most favourite look and that's a pair of pig tails! This look, surely makes me appear a few years younger! Think it would look better with some curls!

2. Low Pony Tail

Next up, it's a low ponytail! I used to love high ponytails but I'm starting to love low ponytails a lot more these days! Just because they are much neater and classier!


3. Ballerina Bun

As a ballerina, Emmalyn always put on a bun. She learnt how to tie her own bun a couple of years back and is pretty good at tying them now. Do you know that there are more than 10 ways to tie a bun?

4. Braids

I tried very hard not to intervene with how she wants to style my locks. But too bad for this look, I had to interrupt her because her original idea was to tie 4 long braids around my head.

I'm proud to say that I've never really taught her how to braid. She learnt this skill by watching how her childcare teachers used to braid their students’ hair.

5. Braided Half-Tie

Then came her last styling idea. Instead of doing a normal half-tie, she added braids to it. Creative right! This is the front view and it looks so pleasant. She even suggested going for this look for my next zoom call with my colleagues.

Looks pretty fancy from the back view! Haha!

Bonus: Modified Pig tails

She didn't want to stop at 5 so we had the 6th! This is a modified version of the pigtail. She first used the end of the comb to select two small sections of my locks at both sides of my head. Then she slowly put a band around each section. Moving on, she divided my tresses into two huge equal sections and tied them up separately. She was so excited to call them the ‘modified pigtail’ style. I am thoroughly impressed with my daughter’s creativity.

Emmalyn certainly had fun being my stylist for the day! Bored of your daily ‘Work from Home’ look? Why not get your little ones to help you spruce things up? It's a fun mummy-daughter bonding activity! Last year, I let her do my make up for an outing and she was so thrilled! As a mother, I feel activities like these give me an opportunity to notice the talents of my kid. Moreover, their motor skills improve and they are well-occupied with something useful.


While I love my long tresses, I really think they need some trimming and perhaps a new colour soon. My last visit to a salon was in December last year. And after much procrastination, I've finally made an appointment with Yoon Salon for a pampering session coming week! Read on for their ongoing promotion!

 

Why Have I Chosen Yoon Salon?

YOON is an upcoming hair salon in town. Their team of stylists gleam with numerous years of experience in this industry. There is no technique that they are not aware of. They are highly equipped with the right skills to perfectly style a fresh new haircut or provide a satisfying treatment. YOON’s management ensures that the products used on clients are gentle and of high quality. I checked out their website and noted that all their treatments are right now going at a promotional rate of SGD 28. This deal is only available online and I found this incredible. Since the rate is affordable and I am in great need for hair therapy, I just knew that I should be giving this boutique a try.



I know that I definitely need a new coat of colour but I'm still contemplating whether I should also add in a perm or to change my look by trimming my hair short. Given that there are so many new modern hair colouring techniques today, I guess I'll just leave it in the good hands of YOON’s professional stylist to help me find the perfect look!

While looking through their website, I even saw a whole section full of articles that speak about hair care.

Do you want to know about hot and cold perms or about digital perming or about S-Curl rebonding? Fret not, all the information you need to clear your doubts is available on their website.


Promotion

Looking for a pampering session or a change in your look? YOON is currently having a great promotion! You can try out 1 session of any of their services at only $28. Simply complete their online form on their website to redeem. You will be receiving a call from their Sales Department to book an appointment slot that’s convenient for you.

Yoon Salon Outlets



* This post is brought to you by YOON.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

Happy 7th Birthday, Emmalyn

Dear Emmalyn,

Happy blessed 7th birthday!

How did all the time fly so fast? It felt like we had just celebrated your graduation from your childcare last Nov with a concert. We love your performance and how you shine even though you are the smallest in size. We have seen how you've grown in personality and learning. But that was just the beginning of an even more exciting journey!

Entering primary school is such a great milestone and I thank God that you've been adapting well. You gained independence and courage with your new status. You had fun making friends, buying things and still quite chill about learning even though we had our fair share of struggle in keeping up.

It's unfortunate that Covid-19 happened and you didn't get to enjoy a more carefree 1st year. Instead of lots of running around the school, it's filled with home based learning, zoom lessons, safe distancing and masking. But thankfully, like many children, you are more resilient and flexible than we could ask for. I'm also glad we had some short trips to Batam and Malacca before all the lockdown.

We got to spend alot of time as a family during the Circuit Breaker and it's a blessing to be able to do so. You get to play more than you could under normal situation - Lego, TV, dolls and role play. We should really had studied more but I can't cope with working from home, Avalyn and housework. Instead, I decided to spend more time and effort on working on your heart.


I thank God that you have been a really good sister to Avalyn. Both of you do fight over toys and disturb each other, but there are alot more loving and sweet moments. You would come back from school telling me that you miss her. You enjoy spending time with her. You always drew pictures of her. You taught her many things like talking, drawing, playing, dressing up. And of course, some naughty things too. Avalyn loves you alot too and looks up to you as a role model.

Now that we are back to the regular routine in the new normal, it's time to pick things up. You started English writing at Write Edge and went back to physical lesson at Fun with Abacus.

You were supposed to take the RAD ballet exam in April but it was postponed till July. Since the examiners can't travel to Singapore, their dance was recorded for the examiners to grade. Glad that it went well and you came out of the exam happy with her performance! You are truly passionate about ballet and would like to continue learning.

As much as I would love to see you persist in drum, I know that you lack of that passion you had in ballet. I'm proud of how far you had came along and I believe the past 2 years of learning drum has surely helped to develop your interest in music. Your 2nd drum rectial last Dec was amazing! You also did a combined piece during the Covid-19 with the rest of the instructors and students of Aureus.

Because of Covid-19, we stopped swimming lessons and you only get to attend a few soccer classes. You miss swimming but we decided to take things slow. 

 

Meanwhile, let's continue to pray for Covid-19 to get out of our way! As we celebrate your 7th birthday, I want to give thanks to God for watching over you and our family for the past 7 years. There are always so much new experiences and incidents that we aren't always ready or equipped to handle them. And, I'm feeling the inadequacies and helplessness more and more year after year. I know I could only rely on God in this parenting journey. I pray for more wisdom and faith to parent both you and Avalyn. 

With love, 

Mummy & Daddy