πŸŽ„ Merry Christmas! πŸŽ„

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I Am Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

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I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

~ Psalm 139:14 (KJV)

Share Your World – December 18, 2017

 

tumblr_ms6fn5R94S1qfywy0o1_400Happy Hump-day everyone!πŸ˜ƒ It’s time for a bit of fun-on-the-blog.

Please excuse the Nacho Libre gifs I’m using. I just ❀️ that movie, it never fails to make me laugh or feel better. Have you seen it? πŸ˜€ What’s your favorite scene or quote? I like to imitate the way Nacho & Esqueleto talk, never fails to elicit laughs! 🀣

(And hey, I’ve finally gotten around to attaching gifs to a blog. That’s a first!πŸ˜‰)

Anyway, here are my answers to this week’s Share Your World blog prompt:

If you could hire someone to help you, would it be with cleaning, cooking, or yard work?

OMG, if this were any easier I’d burst into shards of diamond …. this someone would do the cooking, of course! 😁 I’m not that fond of cooking to begin with and now with a 2 month old I can’t even spell coooking.

If you were to move and your home came fully furnished with everything you ever wanted, list at least three things from your old house you wish to retain?

Nothing. If the new house has everything I ever wanted then I’d want everything to be new. “New” represents a clean slate for me, a chance to do everything all over again and better this time. It also means everything is still in good working condition, everything is still squeaky clean, fresh smelling and nice looking … Aahhh, the rush of endless possibilities and the pleasure of shiny, oil/dust/scratch free surfaces 😊

That said I realize I’m not really attached to any one thing I own right now. I only need my family, and then my phone, my Kindle and my laptop because these things hold pictures. If all pictures were in a thumb drive, then that thumb drive would be all I wanted to take along with me.Β  Unless the goal was to save money then yes, I’d bring as many stuff as I could because I don’t like waste.

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Anyhoot …

What calms you down?

Walking. In circles. Preferably with nobody within earshot so they can’t hear the occasional word that escapes from my mouth or see the facial expressions I make as I mentally argue with myself about whatever it is that’s upset me.

Crazy, huh? But that’s me 😏

Oh, and that’s my brother too. Must be genetics.

He snaps his fingers while at it.

Ooppss … tmi! πŸ˜€

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week? Β Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination.Β 

School break started this week and that means my eldest is home with me.

This also means I get to sleep past 6 a.m. (I still prepare lunch for her on schooldays). And have someone to talk to during the day. And get some help getting things done around the house. And maybe we can take a walk outside later …

Yeah, I really like it that she’s home with me ☺️

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How about you? What are your answers? 😊

Last Minute 2017 Goals

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Hi everyone! How y’all doin? πŸ‘‹

There’s only about 2 weeks left of 2017 and I guess everybody’s gearing up for maximum holiday enjoyment, right? Unfortunately for us, we have to stay in sleepy Batam for Christmas since the baby has no passport yet ☹️☹️ This really is a bummerΒ  for me who, unlike the eldest and the hubs who get a break from school and work, could really benefit from a change in pace & scenery.

Oh well, all the better to make up for this in 2018 then.

The urge to mope is very strong but I’ve chosen instead to end the year strong by doubling down on some goals for the remaining 2 weeks:

  1. Break-fast like a champion

This book said that if you find yourself procrastinating on a goal, chances are, that goal is too big and must be broken down into smaller pieces. So wise! 😏

For weeks now I’ve attempted in vain to do something about my diet (or lack thereof). I am saddled with post-natal weight (& cellulite! 😱😱😱) that I am anxious to be rid of. Unfortunately, all my strategies and tricks in the past just won’t work – sleep deprivation, breastfeeding and buying food from the outside (instead of hiring a nanny I chose not to cook instead) undermine my efforts.

But there must be something I can do, right? If only to feel some semblance of control?

My initial goal was to start cooking again so I’d have more control over what we ate.Β  But this is just not something I want to take on at this time with the baby basically running my day. Then IΒ  thought of cutting out carbs later in the day and well, anybody who’s breastfeeding probably knows how crazy that is. I think I thought of cutting out junkfood too but I don’t really eat that much of it so the move didn’t feel like enough …

Anyway, I finally had the brilliant idea of focusing on one meal instead, and doing that right. And since mornings provide the most self-control and sets the tone for the day, breakfast was a logical choice.

So the goal now reads: eat a solid breakfast before feeling ravenous every single day.

2.Β  Do Post natal abdominal-muscle-recovery exercises every Monday, Wednesday & Friday

I’m already past the 2-months waiting period for getting back to exercise and I’m rearing to go.Β  Luckily, I came across the idea of post-natal abdominal strengthening/recovery exercises before starting anything (well, this isn’t 100% true! πŸ€₯) or else I’d have set myself up for some self-inflicted damage.

I’m not a big fan of 1) slow exercises and 2) those that you do lying down, so this is a real challenge for me. But I want to get back to my original shape and this is standing in the way so … big girl panties on!

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3.Β  Seriously Bond with Eldest

I’ve been nagged by a feeling of having neglected my eldest since the baby’s arrival and still feel that I can do better in this area. A recent incident at her school (we’ll talk about this in a separate post) drove this goal to the top of my priority list.

Fortunately today marks the start of a 3-week school break which gives us plenty of time to bond. The bonding activities might be partially motivated by something juicy (like I said, I’ll tell you later!) but it’s there and I’m taking advantage of it.

So for these 3 weeks, Eldest gets a lot of spotlight.

 

Aaaaand yes, that’s all for now. Wish me luck! I better do those exercises while baby is still slumbering 😁 Updates in the next upcoming posts! Mmmwah! πŸ’‹

 

Share Your World – November 27, 2017

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Hola! πŸ™Œ

It’s the weekly SYW again which is always fun and a great reason to stay blogging ❀️ You can join anytime by goingΒ πŸ‘‰ here.

Here are my answers to this week’s questions:

Would you prefer a reading nook or an art, craft, photography studio?

Oh definitely a craft studio 😍 How wonderful to walk into an entire room and be greeted with things that represent and inspire your creative side. I mean, merely walking into the space would probably be enough to lift your mood, you don’t even have to create. Over here would be my knitting and crochet corner, over there would be my aromatherapy stuff (I’d make it look medieval because it’s kinda like mixing magic potions & such 😁).Β  And there’d be my potted plants strategically positioned here and there …

Tell how you are feeling today in the form of a weather report. (For example, partly cloudy, sunny with a chance for showers, etc.)

I’m partly cloudy but sunshine is breaking through.Β  I want to be completely sunny, but I’m sleep-deprived and flabby, so … Just keepin’ it real πŸ™„ Oh and there’s definitely a chance for showers because I also feel weepy, they call it post-partum blues and it just sneaks up on me out of nowhere 😭

If you could witness or physically attend any event past, present or future, what would it be?

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Hmmm .. I’m stumped on this one πŸ€” Sorry but right now all I can think of is a date in the (hopefully) near future when everyone is sleeping beautifully through the night and I no longer look like a cloud 😁

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week? Β Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination.Β 

I’ve been feeling down about my shape recently. When the husband takes pictures of the baby I always want to be out of it because I look so … round 😟 I mean, I expected this of course but I’m like, dear God, will I ever get my former glory back? And when?

On the local E! channel, I saw a snippet of an interview with an Asian celebrity/model. She was talking about her life and stuff but I wasn’t really paying attention because I was noticing instead that she still looked flabby in spite of giving birth about 2 years ago. She was wearing a lot of make-up to contour her face to look slimmer, she was still very beautiful, but her face was undoubtedly plump. She wore black and hid her arms with strategically placed jackets, and throughout the interview there wasn’t a full shot of her, it was always just from the waist up.

And seeing her that way, knowing that she gave birth about 2 years ago already, put me in a better mood. I mean, she’s practically living in the spotlight and she’s still carrying excess lbs. So why be so hard on myself?

I felt so good I gobbled up 2 McDonald’s apple pies immediately, in one sitting! 🀣

😬 😬😬

I need a plan!

~ oOo ~

~ oOo ~

November Read: One Small Step Can Change Your Life

KaizenOne of the perks of being a Kindle owner is being able to download free ebooks. (I think this is where Amazon puts new and aspiring authors to test the waters. If their book garners praises, then they can charge for it, if not … But I don’t really know, I’m just guessing 😁).Β 

Anyhow, I’ve downloaded quite a few free ebooks in the past and find that most of them should [perhaps] just remain free. I don’t say this to be mean, I know writing takes a lot of work but, there’s something to be said for quality and talent (or real good editors & proofreaders). I just think that quality and talent deserve distinction, price be one of them.

I digress because I can’t imagine this book, authored by Clinical Psychologist Robert Maurer, would stay free for very long*. It is well-written and well-organized. I wasn’t distracted by errors in grammar and composition (which I sadly often find even in books that aren’t free), and the thought process represented by the chapters flows logically and smoothly.

But good grammar and composition is definitely not all this book has to offer. The content itself, while not something novel or ground-breaking, is gold.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” ~ Tao Te Ching

Kaizen, a Japanese business philosophy of continuous improvement, is very familiar in the field of work.Β  Kaizen advocates using very small steps to improve a habit, a process or product using very small moments to inspire new products and inventions. Because it is so identified with efficiency at work, it just totally escaped me that Kaizen could also be applied to your personal and daily life.Β  (Yes, I’m looking at you flabby, post-baby body! 😠).

“Confront the difficult while it is still easy; accomplish the great task by a series of small acts.” ~ Tao Te Ching

Chances are, there’s something in your life that you want to change or improve but have been dithering on.Β  According to the author:Β  “All changes, even positive ones, are scary. Attempts to reach goals through radical or revolutionary means often fail because they heighten fear.Β  But the small steps of kaizen disarm the brain’s fear response, stimulating rational thought and creative play.”

The key idea here is how fear (of change/improvement) can be conquered by something small. The book helps the reader explore how small can be very potent through chapters on asking small questions, thinking small thoughts, taking small actions, solving small problems, bestowing small rewards, and identifying small moments.

Even problems such as pessimism can be subdued by the question: What is one thing about me (or my spouse, or my place of work) that is special?

The book ends with the chapter “Kaizen for Life”Β  and encourages the reader to hold on to the essence of Kaizen, which is an optimistic belief in our potential for continuous improvement.

Like earlier mentioned this book was an easy yet stimulating read. I love books that give pragmatic and sound advice, more so this one where the recommendations do not involve drastic actions or shelling out money. I highly recommend this πŸ™‚

In ending I’d like to share with you one of the phrases that I highlighted and which is, I think, my favorite in the entire book:

If you spend a minute or two each day writing a kind note to tuck into a loved one’s briefcase or a child’s lunchbox, you may save yourself the headache that comesΒ  when relationships grow cool from a lack of nurturance and daily care”.

Now excuse me, I gotta go give my eldest a hug πŸ™‚

 

‘* as of this blogpost, the Kindle edition is now priced at $7.23 … aww, drats! 😢

Share Your World – November 20, 2017

I’m baaa-ack! 😁 Or at least, I’d like to think so. My world is still upside-down what with our 1-month old baby – but she’s absolutely the cutest so she has VIP pass to do so 😘😘

Sleep-deprived me (or is it, I? πŸ€”) however, have been missing blogging, so I thought I could warm-up via this week’s SYW. (By the way, you can participate in the fun πŸ‘‰ here).

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If you were having difficulty on an important test and could safely cheat by looking at someone else’s paper, would you do so?

No. If the test were that important then I’d rather find out through failing that I lack mastery on the topic & do it over again.

What things in nature do you find most beautiful?

Verdant blooms, mysterious forests, bewitching bodies of water, fierce rains, noisy thunderstorms, gay rainbows and the wide open sky.

Complete this sentence: When I travel I love to….

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Watch & soak. Most people want to take pictures and I’ve tried that, but found that it takes away from the experience of being in that place and enjoying the moment. So I usually just take a few pictures as souvenirs and then sit in a cafe or someplace public and just watch what’s going on. I love it! 😍

Oh, and buy keepsakes of course! πŸ˜‰

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week? Β Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination.Β 

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I absolutely appreciate my husband and eldest child for being so supportive of what new moms go through – sleep deprivation and its not-so-pleasant effects.

My eldest, who enjoyed 10 (yes, ten!) amazing years as our only child, has gracefully accepted the fact that there’s a new baby in town. We thought at first she’d act up as she never seemed that excited while I was pregnant, but she’s been very sweet to her little sister instead, and helps out whenever she can.

My husband takes over without prompting upon coming home from work and on weekends, and is always ready to pitch in during night feedings (we supplement) or when the baby is just fussy.

Being in a foreign country, I certainly do not have the luxury of friends and family to call on for help when I need some time off. This does bother me but I get a second wind each time I think of how wonderful my eldest and husband are to me and the baby. I feel very blessed indeed πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

Now how about you? πŸ˜ƒ