Thursday, 28 April 2016

Birth story of our newest member

We welcomed the birth of our third addition last week, on 21st April 2016. 

I am so thankful to be fulfilling the call of Mothering another beautiful miracle. 1 day shy of 39 weeks, littlest J boy decided to make his way to meet us.

Here's our BIRTH STORY to share:

I woke up at 5:30am with some bad cramps and thought I might be in labour. It however got more manageable, but the man insisted on checking into the hospital. One anxious Dad he was. I know.

6.15am: Admitted to hospital with dilation of 3cm. Contractions were mild and slow. I knew we could have waited longer.

11.30am: Broke the water bag, but contractions were still not ideal.

1pm: Put on drip to quicken labour. And that was when the ultimate pain started to kick in gradually. I depended on laughing gas which became unhelpful as the pain got intense.

2.30pm: Yelling, crying and groaning in pain! I knew the option for epidural was out, so I asked for pethidine (pain relieve jab). At 5cm dilated, doctor decided it wasn't a safe option for me.

WHAT?!!! Ok, my bad, I should have decided on a pain relieve option much earlier. Oh well, I did Jazz with epidural, Jare with pethidine and I thought I could handle this boy totally natural. 

3pm: I was one hysterical woman in the delivery suite. Whether or not I was ready, I declared the urge to push at 5cm. Apparatus were ready, doctor and nurses came in, I pushed with all my might or with whatever energy left. I did feel like giving up after some tough pushes, but I pressed on for the fear of any emergencies.

Gosh! The pain was indescribable and it was mad!

Then out came the head, which I thought all's over, but I needed another tough push for those shoulders and then, he was completely out! It was an immediate relieve, and I realized I could breathe like normal again.

My newborn was placed on me. I looked at him with much joy and at the same time bewildered over the agonizing pain this birth brought upon. I did a noble exchange and I am still amazed at how I did it!

Nonetheless, I was soaked in the beauty of miracle and cried buckets over the victory we celebrate!

Welcome to the World, baby!

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Welcome to the family!

When my doctor congratulated and praised my bravery, I could only say, "I should have...!" I should have opted a pain reliever for a less dramatic episode. How did I not realize epidural was the best medical invention?!!

Even without any pain relieve, I shivered badly, threw up and ran a temperature that very instance after birth. I was extremely exhausted after all the drama. And yes, my throat hurts badly from all the yelling.

On the bright side, I'm glad to have a lower hospital bill for going minimal.

Thankful for a smooth and safe delivery and I am all so ready to battle the parenting of 3 wonderful children. Truly a Mum's calling.

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We are complete!

We spent 2 nights at Thomson Medical Centre and I've to say, comparing to staycation-ing there 7 years ago, service and environment got a lot better. I think there were some renovations done. Nurses were angelic, stay was comfy and for being 3rd time loyal, they presented a lovely hamper to us.

Thank you for the hospitality!

If you are giving birth at TMC this year, check out the Mummy's Pampering Luggage they are giving to all Mums as gift. This is not a sponsored post, but one to appreciate the medical people in the industry. Good things must share!

Photo credit: Thomson Medical


And of course, we are thankful for our families and friends who stood by and took time off to visit us and leave us kind greetings. Heartfelt thanks for your love and gifts.

To all preggies out there, wishing you a safe and smooth delivery.

To the newly minted parents, a Big Congrats! Welcome to parenthood.

To the being parents again, congrats too! On giving our children the best gift in life, another sibling!

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Yield on Day 6

Today, a week later, I celebrate the achievement of 100ml! 

Breastfeeding may not be an easy journey, but I know Mothers are amazing overcomers! Let's preserve on.

Stay calm, birth on, nurse on and Mother on...


Monday, 18 April 2016

Little lessons Iearnt as my daughter turned 7

Dear Jazz

You turned magically seven early this month. It's now mid month and I know this has to be a milestone to document for. 

Your birth day also marks the birth of our blog! It was your birth that inspired me to start our milestones and memories in here. Together with you, it has grown to be seven years. 

I often do random read back and looking at you and your brother, I'm assured that you both are happy little beings, enjoying childhood to the fullest! That makes my Motherhood journey as fulfilling too.

On your birthday...

I packed a box of your favourite snacks to school. It was unusual to pack gummies and your favourite junkies snacks for school. But, it was your birthday! 

When I got you after school that day, you were upset that you gave up your all gummies to the classmates sitting near you. You said you couldn't say, "No."

For that kindness you shared, I brought abundance to you. I gave you a pack of gummies!

Thank you for that sacrifice to show kindness! 

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Birthday snack box!

I asked where you would like to go? You asked for the theme park. I declined because it would be a pity that I can't go on rides with you. Daddy has to be at work, and you understood us readily.

You gave an alternative of going to the beach with your favourite buddy, Pillow. I was more than happy to fulfill that simple request.

Thank you for teaching me simple joy! 


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Beach play

I asked if you would like to bring little brother along, you said, "Yes! He's my play funner." I'm amused at the love hate relationship you both hold.

Thank you for loving your family! 


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Siblings for life

Then I asked about the cake you would like. I threw out all the fanciful options, but you only wanted the cake we always ordered from my childhood baker. It was usually plainly designed, but she made it special for you. For the love of dogs you have.

Thank you for making it easy! 

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Lovely dog

I asked again, what was your birthday wish, you said a game of Monopoly with your family! I'm impressed at how you gathered everyone for an amazing game of 3 hours!

Thank you for teaching me contentment!

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Monopoly game request

Oh, I am getting all soooo emotional marveling at the simplicity and thoughtfulness in you. You even understood that we don't do anymore parties upon entering primary-hood. You never whined a single bit when we were doing so much for your little bro's 5th party this year. 

Thank you for the many little lessons you teach along our walk. You teach me what life is all about! And it's our blessing to have you as our daughter.

As you stepped into the world of massive academics, I often tell you, success is never a coincidence. Work hard with that strong hunger of knowledge burning in you. You will be one great achiever.

We love you and always believe in you!

Keep in check too, that a beautiful person isn't just about the achievements outside, but the nature of our inner core. Stay beautiful!

I hope you had yet another memorable birthday.

Love,
Mum

Friday, 15 April 2016

Rise and Shine Funanza Carnival

How does an indoor carnival or mega playground sound to you? We know how fiercely hot the weather has been and this very much appeals to us!  

Here's an upcoming opportunity for indoor fun and play brought to you by Rise and Shine! With its founding vision to help and educate parents to nurture healthier, happier and brighter children, it has put together the upcoming FUNANZA! 




You do need to keep your calendar free for a day of Family Fun! 

Event name: Rise and Shine Funanza
Date: 07 May 2016 (Saturday)
Venue: Marina Square Atrium
6 Raffles Boulevard Singapore 039594
Time: 11am to 9pm (Registration begins at 10:30am)


Families can look forward to an exciting range of fun and sports activities that will encourage kids to stay active and provide great opportunities for family bonding! Here are some event highlights that will get your fingers moving to register:
  • Meet and greet with Pororo, especially if your kids are fans of it. 
  • Skip to win! Get your child into the practise mode for the title of Skipping rope Queen/King.
  • Keep Hula hooping. Get spinning for the title of Hula hoop Queen/King.
  • Multi-sports try out. Pick a new healthy habit, or maybe, discover that talent. 
  • Mini Ninja Warrior. Get your little Ninja up for action at the inflatable obstacle course.
  • Little gym Arena. Get a healthy dose of fun at the kids' gym.
  • Family Fun shot at the photo booth.
  • Art and craft. Creativity is for everyone! 
  • Inter-family matches. Pre-register them to not miss out.

Aren't we glad that such Fit and Fun carnival is held indoor?!! I am.

All these exciting activities are of good suit for children between ages 3 to 8. Each child's ticket costs $30 and adults enter for free. We're excited to share a 25% discount code with all readers of Mum's calling to get their hands on the tickets. Simply enter 'MUMSCALLING25' upon purchase here.

Discount code will be valid till 26 April 2016. Act fast!

We are even more excited to share that we have 3 pairs of tickets for giveaway to 3 lucky winners. All you had need to do is:

1. Like Mum's calling on Facebook
2. Like Rise and Shine on Facebook
3. Leave a comment on this Facebook post, telling us which event or events interest you. 

Best of luck!

You may hop over too, to MissusTay's Journal to try your luck on the same giveaway!


Terms and Conditions:
  • This giveaway ends on 22 Apr 16, 2359 hrs
  • Winners will be picked by random.org
  • Winners will be announced on Facebook and this blog post
  • Winners will have 24 hours to respond, failing which a new winner will be drawn
  • All incomplete entries will be disqualified. 
  • All entries will be verified before the winners are announced.   
  • Giveaway is no way sponsored, endorsed, administered or associated with Facebook. 

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Peek into my week as a Mum blogger

Blogging is very much a hobby, love and passion to me. It isn't so much about Work, because really, there's no livelihood out of it! I would be overjoyed if it does help get some load off my groceries bill, but nope!

Monetary gain had never been substantial and Sponsorship are bonuses which are mostly settled like that of a barter trade.

This blog birthed in 2009, based on a simple physiological need, the need of self actualization to document the milestones of our parenting and kids' growing journey. It grew vastly along the years and I have to say, it's consuming a bigger part of my schedule now than when it just started.

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My 'workstation'

The nuclear in our family multiplies, so does blogging. It's after all, because of the kids, that my blogging inspirations come. And of course, we dealt more with sponsored posts too.

How do I find time to blog?
If you have a hobby, it's most natural that you find time for it. And I know, parenting doesn't come with that frequent freedom to groom a hobby. With passion and love, it'll be easier to nurture. Many blogs have sprouted along the decades, and without constant nourishing, they wither quickly. 

It's all about seeking time for it. For me, above and beyond the Motherly duties.  
 
Some weeks I get the peak and some weeks the trough. It largely depends on what comes through the email, and what events or products have been covered that requires a post up. I'll try not to over commit in order to still get some breather in between. And of course, I had love to keep my focus of putting up my own content, the non-sponsored posts.

To date, I'm also trying to find an auspicious time to embark on, 'Descendants of the sun.' Tell me it will be an awesome indulge!

WEEKDAYS
These are good days for me get onto my blog to update, write and share inspirations. Content is much created and published at my own pace. Flexible schedule. Sponsored posts are usually more time sensitive. So the priority and scheduling comes in here.

My day begins at 6am

Whip breakfast and get the kids ready for school. The man takes Jazz to school at 6.45am and that's when I have some time to myself till the boy wakes up at 8am for breakfast and school.

My official 'Me' time begins between 9:30am to 1pm. This crucial time is much appreciated for handling other matters:
  • Groceries 
  • Meals preparation (Lunch for Jazz and dinner for all) 
  • Household chores
  • Blogging 
  • Others - read, chat up with friends, bake etc.
  • Nap (If I've spare! Preggy you know)

Listed first is of the highest priority to lowest. I mean my boss will definitely be unhappy if I over blog without putting food on the table for the family.

I do the groceries twice to thrice a week, after sending Jare to school. Meals preparation come in everyday, except Wednesday, when we would dinner over at my Grands. Preparing the meals during this time helps me shorten kitchen time when the kids are home. All I had needed to do is to toss everything into the wok.

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Groceries!

Household chores are usually on hold if I'm competing with time. It will be an eyesore, but at least it sits where it is quietly. Best part, if it sits too long, the man will do the laundry! Yay or Nay? I keep my job.

After 1pm
When my official 'me' time is over, I do not come back to blog as I commit the rest of my day to the kids. The chauffeuring from school to home and to classes, the school work that I need to see through with Jazz, the cooking of lunch and dinner and the little chores or quality time with kids I can squeeze out will be during this time.

If I have unaccomplished work on blog, I'll log on after the kids turn in or when Jazz is independent on her school work. I do however use some in between time to update Instagram or push out a ready content.

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Snippets of a week

Some nights, when their bedtime overrun, I'll catch my missed drama on Toggle. Oh. So. Aunty! I know.

So these the snippets of my typical weekday, which is really much about Work - Home matters and Online matters.

WEEKENDS
The laptop's shut. Only Instagram and Facebook posts. I set time to be with the family since weekends are precious get together time. Being a stay home Mum, I chauffeur and work hard on weekdays for their enrichment just so weekends are very much freed up for any activities we have in mind.

I don't really step into the kitchen and I keep house chores away. I look forward too, to the time I can snug longer in bed. Recuperate I meant.

Js do their swimming lesson on Sundays, which is also a time we are all gathered together by the pool as a family and with our friends.

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Weekend Fun

Stay home Mum gets excited about weekends too! Not having to rise and shine at 6am is a great deal to me.

How often do I blog?
Consistency is always a good frequency. If inspiration comes and time permits, I get onto writing and probably keep it in draft for a couple of days of editing. So yeap, I do keep some in draft for the drought season or till I think it's ready for publish. 

Love to have something out at least once or twice a week. I'll try to spread out sponsored posts, which most allow the flexibility in doing so.

And some days, blogging and house chores can be like this too...

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Just too tired!


What blogging involves?
We very much know what's in the scope of a stay home Mum. Or more accurately, it takes a Mum to understand a Mum. A blogger to understand a blogger.

There's just much coordination and effort behind every post.

EMAILS
I reply emails during the pockets of time I have when doing the Mummy Taxi duty. While waiting for the kids to end their enrichment or while waiting for Jazz to end school. Or sometimes, when I'm waiting for my pot of pasta to get cooked.

Those in between time.

If there's more I need to read up or find out on an event or product, I'll reply when I get hold of a better time. There's always some analysis behind each collaboration. Just to ensure that every opportunity is beneficial to our family and readers, as well as worth the reviewing effort. 

Sometimes, our availability or suitability just don't fit certain events. Decisions and commitments are more manageable if we learn to sieve and say, 'No.'

PHOTOGRAPHY
Pictures complements blogging. After which, there's just so much editing behind every picture. The cropping, brightening and watermarking do take some time. I'm not a pro, but I appreciate great pictures.

Js used to be so camera trained, till recently they went, "stop taking pictures of me, Mama!" Oh well... I still have to. Even though it's quite a fret to get great photos of them now.

Sometimes, with bribery involved. 

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The little ah beng speaks!


SOCIAL MEDIA
The other platforms that I've embarked on are our Facebook page, Instagram (@mumscalling) and Pinterest (Mum's calling). Welcome you to like and follow! Instagram, which I sometimes link up to Facebook allows me to share the less wordy inspirations, and sometimes hunts of fun places that we can shout out without getting on blog.

I prefer not to be seen diving into the phone too frequent whenever I'm with family or friends. I post feeds during any freed time.

Treasure precious moments first.

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@mumscalling

Pinterest on the other hand gets very rare updates. I use it more of a platform for me to gather ideas and insights of other creative Mums and users. You will find great parenting, parties, food and other great ideas in there.

So yeap, you can tell I'm not adventurous with other new platforms and I don't think I have the resources and time to manage more than these.

PRIORITY
Blogging should never precede the priority of my family. After all, it's because of my calling as a Mum, that I got inspired to start this blog.

While many often say, "Oh, so nice, you get to go on this and that for Free!" My heart speaks much for this, we know there's no free lunch and it's all about trade. The much work behind a content is vague to readers but significant to writers.

You can never guess how much hard work is behind each content. Writing had never been my finest quality, it does take me some longer time to get chunks of words out. Days of accumulated hours for certain content.

Glad though, I am often a better voice in writing than in speaking.

As Js grow older, this is one that is unlikely to sustain. They need their privacy and I'll just run out of stories and pictures to tell. Parenting is a permanent journey, whereas blogging has an expiry on us.

With J3 coming along, my schedule definitely gets more complicated. But I guess, we can hang in here a little longer, for the new joy and milestones to add!

Over the years, I often ask myself if I would continue blogging even if there's only 1, 2 or maybe 3 readers?


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Reading a letter I wrote to her

I will! Because, it's all about you, and for you, Js.


So, you want to be a parent blogger? Welcome on board!
 

This post is part of a link-up with other Singapore Parent Bloggers to share a week in the life of a blogging mum or dad. You can peek into the life of 30 families over at Week In Life of Blogging Mum and Dad linkup here.

Next up is Michelle Hon from The Chill Mom. Find out how this busy SAHM balances between her family, running her consultancy business, blogging and everything else in between, tomorrow.




Friday, 8 April 2016

The Rainbow Fish Musical

There are many valuable lessons we can learn from a person or an experience. For the little ones of ours, it’s most meaningful that they have every opportunity and with an open heart, learn good moral values from characters and stories in books or plays. 

Making a comeback on 26th April is ‘The Rainbow Fish,’ brought to us by itheatre. This award winning storybook by Marcus Pfister is one modern classic tale about a shoal of beautiful fish in the entire ocean. Their scales are every shade of blue, green or purple, and ONE has a sparkling silver scale. Meet proud and pretty rainbow fish, and her friends, Starfish, Small Blue, Big Violet and Little Green.


It sure is one exciting and colourful musical coming up!

Get on an adventure with Rainbow Fish as she learns some very valuable lessons about her attitude to others, some hard lessons about pride and selfishness, and some valuable truths about the power of generosity and humility. Her friends find out how teamwork helps everyone, and how gossip and rumour can cause damage to friendships!

Photo credit: itheatre

After a 5 year absence from stage, this incarnation had been completely refreshed, reworked and re-imagined. It promises a time of bright, shiny and cute musical extravaganza! Expect colourful puppets characters and a wonderful black light underwater world in a hilarious comedy for every young and old.    

itheatre has come a long way. Be sure not to miss this musical as it returns to be part of its 15th Anniversary season special! Join in the fun and valuable lessons we can receive from The Rainbow Fish and friends!

Tickets purchase available over at sistic.

Event Details
Date: 26 April to 15 May
Time: 10am (Mon to Fri), 10.30am and 2.30pm (Sat and Sun)
Venue: Drama Centre
100 Victoria Street Level 3
National Library Building
Singapore 188064
Ticket pricing: $32 (Excluding booking fee)


GIVEAWAY
Heap Thanks to itheatre, we have 2 pairs of tickets for 2 lucky readers to the 30 April, 2.30pm show. All you had need to do is:
1. Like Mum's calling on Facebook
2. Like itheatre on Facebook
3. Leave a comment on this Facebook post, telling us one value we can learn from this Musical

Best of luck!

This giveaway has closed. Congrats Priscilla Q. and Doreen O.


Terms and Conditions:
  • This giveaway ends on 14 Apr 16, 2359 hrs
  • Date and time of show cannot be changed
  • Winners will be picked by random.org
  • Winners will be announced on Facebook and this blog post
  • Winners will have to pick up winning tickets from sponsor's office
  • Winners will have 24 hours to respond, failing which a new winner will be drawn
  • All incomplete entries will be disqualified. 
  • All entries will be verified before the winners are announced.   
  • Giveaway is no way sponsored, endorsed, administered or associated with Facebook.