The month of January is GONE. How fast is that? Today, I am going to share 15 Things that I will be doing differently in 2015 as part of a blog train by Rachel of Catch Forty Winks. Had meant to share this earlier, but have been really busy at work, events, family functions as well as Jerome turning two, I reckon I needed a breather in between.

With a new year always come new resolutions for most. I don’t really have the habit of making resolutions because I just want to live life happy and that’s pretty much my life’s motto. But, I always believe that people should improve themselves over time – grow in wisdom and depth of knowledge, improve the way things are being done, change habits for better etc. So here’s what I am doing in 2015 in working towards a better me.

 

1. Take it slow.  Relax more. Start living. 

I have repetitively heard a lot of people telling me that I have so much on my plate. I constantly find myself stretched and can’t quite relax properly without a to-do list at the back of my mind waiting to be checked off. I often drop off to sleep in the midst of doing something. I also find myself a victim of bad headaches frequently and feeling like my head is really tight and would burst. So yeah, I am going to start taking it slow, relax more, start living for myself. I did that for the month of January and I feel a lot better. I don’t get a lot of things done (especially blog posts), but I don’t trash myself up over it either.

 

2. Sleep more.

See point #1. Of cos, I haven’t been sleeping well. On very very very good days, I get 7 hrs max. Mostly, I toggle between 4-5hrs and there are days where I survive on just 2 or 3hrs. That’s coming from a mom whose kids sleep through the night now. It’s crazy I know.

 

3. Prioritize better. Stop procrastinating. Plan.

I just need to plan my days and my time better. Everyone has the same 24hrs and I often think if people can do so much more, I can too. I think I can do better in terms of planning and prioritization – in matters of work, house and all other important chores. And STOP being a procrastinator! (Yes, I admit I am one.)

 

4. Be nice. Be kind. Be nice again. 

2014 opened my eyes to some of the most toxic people I ever knew. I don’t know how their brains work and function, because they are just plain nasty. I may not have triumphed unscathed, but the whole episode reinforced something that I always hold true. Stay true to myself, being nice and kind helps. The husband is forever scolding me for being bullied by others and not fighting back, but I don’t play dirty. If need to, I will fight back. But I mostly return toxic people with kindness with the hope that they will feel guilty. If all else fails, I think karma will help me deal with them some day. I have always been a big believer of the saying – Kindness begets kindness. So yeah, I am out to being kind this year, and hopefully, reap some good karma.

 

5, Eat healthy. Make an effort in keeping fit.

Enough said. I am a glutton. I eat like a cow. I am known for being greedy and being able to eat. A LOT. This year, I am going to cut down. Partly because I have been piling on those kilos and my clothes won’t fit anymore. #truestory. I’ll eat just enough to fill the stomach. Cut down on water with sugar content (i.e. green tea). I already don’t do junk food and I don’t take carbonated water but I think I can do better. Besides, every time I order a can of green tea, 1/2 of it goes down my kids’ throats and I am not sure I particularly like that. So I stop drinking myself, they would stop too. I need to be a good example if I don’t want my kids to take in all those sugar. I bought myself a new water bottle and have been bringing my own water out on weekends too (see point #10).

On top of that, the husband and me are starting a fitness regime where we set targets to for each other and make sure we fulfil it every night before we head off to bed. I have started from a 50 sit-ups & 10 push-ups target and doing +1 for every day that has passed. I see the exercise time spent as a special bonding time for the husband and me, and its just takes about 15 mins per day. I believe it helps us sleep better too, so it reinforces point #2 as well as point #8.

I am also going to try out tabata workouts and clock in more runs. Oh. I also got myself a mi band to track my daily activities and my daily steps target is at 13,000. Am going to review the mi band soon on the blog so do look out for it!

 

6. Grow more confidence. 

Do I even need to explain? I often find myself socially awkward or at a loss of words in situations. It’s not I don’t want to talk, but more like I don’t know what to say and I clam up. Many people tell me I can’t be that but I actually am. Because of this, I usually stick to familiar groups of friends and don’t quite venture out to make new friends as much. If you think that I haven’t been friendly, this might be the reason.

I feel I need the confidence to accomplish more, so I am going to try to voice out more, try speaking more often in situations, let go of my self consciousness and just do it. They say, with confidence, half a battle is won. I just need to constantly remind myself to open my mouth.

 

7. Connect more with the people that matter.

Life with 2 kids took a lot out of me. Social life mostly. I can’t remember a time where I didn’t head home after work and headed to town to chill and have dinner with a friend. Or even plan activities actively. I miss that. Being able to just relax and have a nice meal with friends. Doing a skate session in the park with friends. I do that less than 10 times a year, and mostly for my friends’ birthdays.  On most days, I am just too tired and lazy to head out so I conveniently choose to go home instead.

I want to change that In 2015 because I feel I have neglected my friends a lot. I know they are an understanding bunch but I can’t help missing out on a lot in their lives sometimes.

 

8. Work on the relationship with the husband. 

After marriage and 2 kids, I admit that I sometimes take my husband for granted. We are so comfortable with each other. I need to constantly remind myself not to be complacent. The spouse often takes a back seat when there are kids involved and I have seen other cases where kids have taken over the relationship in a family. I think a rock solid relationship between the husband and wife is the foundation to a great family, so that’s something that I need to work on. Lately, we have been getting frustrated with each other more easily, and raising our voices more.

I just need to be a lot mindful with the husband and show my appreciation often. Hopefully, he does the same too. He’s really quite the super dad.

Der, the Super Dad.

Der, the Super Dad.

 

9. Do more date nights out. More couple time. 

We barely date any more. When Jerome was a little younger, we used to deposit our kids for a few short hours with my mum and my mother-in-law so that we can have some breather and do something together. Now, we don’t. Partly because we both miss them a lot. Partly because I always ask the kids and they always want to stick with us instead of the grandparents. We probably do more fun things as a family and the kids love their playroom at home. I do cherish the time spent as a family, but I think I need to clock in more couple time and date nights so that point #8 can be improved as well. I would like to do 1 date night per month if that’s even possible in our insane schedules.

More us as a couple in 2015.

More us as a couple in 2015.

 

10. Save more. Spend less. 

The way the prices increase in SG is scaring me a lot. When Jerry was born, the milk powder was like $70/tin. Now, it’s almost $100. The inflation is very real and I am starting to wonder if we have enough funds to bring the kids up at the rate the inflation is going. The school’s fees are increasing, kids’ stuff are way more expensive, and there are still loans to pay off.

I am setting myself targets to save this year and I’m forcing myself to ask myself the question very often – Do I need to eat/buy/use this? Eat less, spend on the right things and eliminate the unnecessary. I really should stop wasting money on things that doesn’t matter too much.

 

11. Cook more.

I have been losing steam on the cooking front, mostly because I am time starved or too tired. It’s just too convenient to spend 10 mins downstairs to pack food than to sweat it out in the kitchen for an hour before everyone gets to eat, and then wash up later. I am getting a little sick of the food that we have been eating lately, and all the MSG that we are taking in.  I really love home-cooked stuff so I want to cook more for the family, and try out more interesting recipes. Have been dying to try this Chicken Rice Recipe for the longest time. Jerry loves chicken rice and I know he would be really excited about it.

 

12.  Learn new skills. 

Have you thought about learning a new skill recently? There are always a lot on my mind that I would like to learn. I just need to find that chance. Or create that chance. So, 3 days ago, I learned how to crochet from a friend. I had a 1-hr crash course on the basic stitches to survive through and made my first rabbit amigurumi. It’s not completed yet, missing the stuffing (which I do not have) and the stitching up (which I have yet to learn) but I think it is a lot of fun! I want to make minions and peppa pigs! Anyone a crochet expert with tips to share?

My first crochet rabbit amigurumi.

My first crochet rabbit amigurumi.

p.s. pardon the green yarn because this was what i had to work with.

 

13. Quit jumping (into conclusions). Start asking.

This applies to the kids. I have noticed that I often jump into conclusions about certain actions that they have done. I have assumed they did something because they were being playful and naughty. But asking Whys and Whats have been enlightening. The kids give me answers that makes me ashamed sometimes, so I have decided to give the kids a chance. Start asking the whys, where, what, when and quit jumping in conclusions and be prepared to be surprised by them.

Jerry, particularly have surprised me a few times. There are occasions when he does something unthinkable (e.g. putting his hand into the fish tank to take out a fish display), but it turns out that Jerome had asked for it and he is just doing what a brother needs to do. Helping his brother. I find it particularly important to ask the whys because it determines the purpose of the action, and it makes a lot more sense for me to guide him from there… than to just shout and scream at the poor thing when what he is doing could be the “right” thing to do.

If you find yourself frustrated and screaming at the kid often, I urged you to stop and start asking. You might be surprised too!

 

14. Read more to the kids. Spend quality time together. 

Each day, I only have a very short window with the kids. They get back at home between 9ish at night and sleeps around 11ish.  During this time, I often have to take my dinner at the same time (which comes together with the kids) and the kids play by themselves or watch TV. As such, this precious 2 hour window is all that I have to interact with them all day. Jerome recently have shown a lot of interest in books and have been asking me to read. While I used to read to Jerry every night when he has a kid… I barely did it for Jerome. I think I owe it to him to read as often as I used to, and I mandated that the husband reads the Chinese books as well which I really can’t do.

I fully intend to make us bond as a family over reading and also to help wind them down for the day before we head off to bed. Oh, I taught Jerry how to play the Chinese Chess the other day too.

 

15. Clock in more family memories. Do more meaningful things/activities together.

Meaningful activities like a trip to the beach. A trip to the Zoo. A trip out exploring the nature, people-watching, observing buildings and not spent in air-conditioned malls walking from shop to shop. I am honestly quite sick of my kid asking for a new toy every time we walk past Toy ‘R’ Us. I had a very fun childhood filled with loads of outdoor activities which I still have very fond memories of till today. I want to do the same for my kid, and exposing them to every other thing possible. I want them to know that there is life beyond the TV/computer/phone screens which is a lot more fun and can intrigue their senses. I also need to watch myself and stop picking up my phone when the kids are around. Social media can wait. Some of the activities that I plan to do in the coming months include kite-flying, picnic at the gardens, exploring islands, going to the farms, and bringing the kids to watch more plays. Do share any interesting activities that you might have. Outdoor ones preferred!

Building sandcastles at the beach, Pasir Ris Park.

Building sandcastles at the beach (Pasir Ris Park).

And that’s it! Quite a long list I’ll say, but not out of reach. I am aiming for small gains daily or weekly and I am sure, we’ll end 2015 as a better person, a better couple, and a stronger family! I hope you have enjoyed this post, and do share with me if you have similar goals or suggestions on how I can do better.

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Do click on the badge above to read what 33 other mummies have up their sleeves for 2015. I’m the 13th person on the blog train so do check back on this badge to read the updated posts daily. Next, on the blog train is Michelle Hon, a really yummy mummy with 2 little girls. Look out for her blog post tomorrow!

The Chill Mum

The Chill Mum


Michelle is a fashion model turned SAHM who spends her day cleaning up after her girls and sacrificing sleep for talking to her laptop (or more commonly known as blogging at The Chill Mom).

She has finally accepted the fact that she is 35 and it is time to make a few changes in her life. Check out what she has planned for 2015. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram