handmade business, The Introvert Expat SAHM Diaries

My Brain’s Abuzz With 2019

Blame it on the ambivalent & un-inspiring goals I set for myself in 2018 (though I can’t be too hard on myself, I had recently given birth you know ๐Ÿ˜Š), but my brain’s been abuzz with goals for 2019.

My episode of painful gastritis really did help me clarify things, one of them was realizing that I can’t really do “loose weight” as a goal again. I mean, yes, I could do with some weight loss, but I want this to be a side-effect of something bigger (and healthier!). Like fasting, because weight-loss is just one of the many effects of it and it isn’t even the best or most noteworthy.

Anyhow, I realized that I am galvanized into action by level-up goals that are fun and exciting but are also a bit scary and outside my comfort zone. I mean, I guess all of us are like this, no? In my case the more thought I gave to it the more it started to look like this:

goal: make life in Batam fun & engaging <- learn Indonesian <- make local friends (I only have fellow expat wives as friends so far) <- use my craft as a springboard <- sell my creations for fun <- learn all about social & online selling

Now this is really starting to look like a decent party ๐Ÿคฉ

Already, because these goals are that exciting to me, I’ve taken some relevant action. I got friendly with my next-door neighbor. Now at least I’m friendly with someone local and hopefully she knows of a church that has English service (next action item).

I also made good on something I’ve wanted for some time, a dedicated craft site (fifiandriri.com). I also opened an IG account to serve as a portfolio of my creations. I’m finishing up all my crochet/knitting WIP’s at the moment so that I can start clean asap, with an eye on social selling this time.

I’m reading up about the handmade business, and my brain is lit with ideas and more to-do’s like learning product photography and opening up an FB for biz account.

So exciting! ๐Ÿคช

bulletin-board

How is all this going to help me with learning Indonesian? Simple, language is best learned though interaction & immersion. I’ve tried cooping myself up indoors facing my computer, the results are minimal and I’m not having any fun at all while at it. So I need to be out there and talk!

And how is this gonna force me into loosing weight? Well, lemme tell ya: I love to crochet lacy pieces of clothing. Clothing need to be modeled by a real person. You do the rest of the math ๐Ÿ˜ย ๐Ÿ˜

Advertisements
The Introvert Expat SAHM Diaries

Goals, Gastritis & That Blog I Was Telling You About

mark-adriane-259950-unsplash
source

Hello my beautiful, awesome friends! It’s been a while. How ya’ll doin’? ๐Ÿ˜€

I’m here to share with you that I’ve done and am doing something I find truly exciting.

But before that, a backstory in the briefest way I can do it:

The last time we “talked” I was going on about these goals I had, right? And that I was working on them, but it was all feeling like an uphill climb. I knew something was amiss since I was really struggling with them.

So I had to stop and take stock. I dove into motivational material, listened to Jim Rohn, Jack Canfield, Lisa Nichols and a bunch of life coaches on Podcasts and I realized the problem was that my goals just weren’t exciting.ย  There was no thunder and lightning at all. And they didn’t pull me out of my comfort zone in ways that energized me.

At about the same time I realized this I experienced gastritis along with the worst period pains E-VERR. It was absolute torture! But all the doctor said was …and you’re not gonna believe this, he said “just be happy”. Literally. I’m serious.

Now I totally believe in the mind-body connection, so I didn’t need to be told twice. I immediately improved the quality of the food I was eating, shifted to the kind of exercise my body truly enjoyed, tackled a couple of small but annoying things in my life, continued to feed my brain with motivational material, and allowed myself to just forget “those effing goals” for a while.

Just a few days into this routine I noticed that I could see better.ย  I’m like “why is the TV so much clearer all of a sudden?!”.ย  I also felt physically lighter. I can’t quite explain it but I was moving with more ease and fluidity and as though I had lost a ton of weight.ย  I was also in a more positive mindset.ย  My brain chatter was just … better…?ย  It’s like I gained some maturity, resilience, confidence & purposefulness all in one. So yes, improving your diet, exercising better and filling your brain with positive stuff makes all the difference in the world.

But the biggest take-away for me is really this: I created new goals and I made them genuinely relevant and scary-exciting.ย  I will be sharing more about them with you in upcoming posts but for now I would Lโค๏ธVE for you to head on over to fifiandriri.com and tell me what you think ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks and, I’ll talk to you soon ๐Ÿ’‹

Monthly Reviews & Blog Updates, Staying Sane

The Awesome Month of April & The Marvelous Month of May

April. Gurrrl how fast you go! But you gave me some awesome victories that I am definitely grateful for:

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผย  I sorted out my feelings about blogging and this blog. As a result, not only does this blog now enjoy a fresh “coat of paint”, but more importantly, I’m staying true to sharing about me and my life as it unfolds.

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผย  I started on a path to beauty because I hit rock bottom on this matter. There was a time when I was younger when I didn’t care about my appearance, and I could get away with it. But now I need to swallow my pride and get help because, as a stay-at-home-mom and as I grow older, I’d rather be an inspiration than a warning ๐Ÿคญ

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผย  I discovered a new & interesting author, understand Indonesia better, and no longer feel guilty for a few not-so-nice observations I’ve had about this country and its people (in general) because the author has actually observed the same! As they are fond of saying here “begitulah” (that’s just the way it is)!

Indonesia Etc

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผ I had my first FO of the year ๐Ÿคฉ

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผ This month my husband went on his second overseas trip and I’m no longer panicky about it ๐Ÿ˜€ As a matter of fact, I kinda enjoy the change of atmosphere ๐Ÿ˜€ It’s not that I no longer worry about what to do & who to contact in the event something unforeseen happens. But I think it’s because I’ve been learning a bit more Indonesian lately and I’m exposed to more people as a result of my new hobby.

๐Ÿ‘‰๐Ÿผ And lastly, I think it could be the start of the rainy season. Yay! It’s been raining the past few days and right about time too because the heat was sweltering. (When is it ever not sweltering hot over here, eh? ๐Ÿ˜œ).

rainy day

And Now for Making May Marvelous

A lot of people have a monthly bucket list and I enjoy reading them. I do agree that it’s a wise & deliberate way to ensure time is well spent. I’m also an enthusiastic goal setter myself (ok, way too enthusiastic most times) although the implementation part is often a bit problematic ๐Ÿคญ

But anyways, in that spirit, here’s what’s on my May bucket list:

๐Ÿ‘‰ ๐Ÿ‘‰ Stay away from anything crochet (or knitting) ๐Ÿ˜

I just thought it’d be cool to give something I’m obsessed with a break and see what rushes in to fill the void. I’m considering the following in its place:

๐Ÿ’„ย  read a book, maybe 2

๐Ÿ’„ย  learn a new recipe, maybe 2

๐Ÿ’„ย  craft something out of paper, maybe 2

๐Ÿ’„ย  have coffee with a friend, maybe 2

๐Ÿ’„ย  celebrate Mother’s Day in a positive way

๐Ÿ’„ย  buy a doll

 

Now on to YOU:

What are some of your April highlights? Looking forward to something special in May? Do share! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Better Pictures 2018

It’s Time To Get Started On 2018

Hi everyone! I’m still here, in case anyone’s noticed ๐Ÿคญ

I’m still living life in 2-hour sleep-deprived increments and experiencing post partum hair loss as we speak (eeeek!).ย  But I’m doing quite well under the circumstances.

So what’s new?

Among my goals for this year is to take better pictures and to (finally, finally) use my DSLR as I go along.ย  I’ve always wanted to improve my photography skills and I bought the thing to seal the deal – you know, very much like buying a treadmill or a lifetime gym membership to affirm the veracity of your intentions ๐Ÿ™„

However, after leafing through its manual like it was some distasteful magazine, the DSLR turned into a pricey paperweight, gathering dust as the limelight went back to my ever handy, lightweight & uncomplicated iPhone. (Which reminds me of my treadmill which also became a pricey clothes rack & laundry hamper station, but I digress… ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ™„).

2018 will be a year of ‘more doing and less hair twirling’ for me though so the DSLR has been exhumed and together we will be bonding over some photography courses this year. To help get me started, I’ve decided to do WP’s Photography Developing Your Eye 1 course rrrright now.

The 1st assignment is to get oriented with your camera (gulp!) and to take a photo representation ofย  what the word “home” brings to mind for you. Right away I think ~ hmmm, how fitting for someone who is all but home!

However, it didn’t take long for me to decide on a subject: our living room.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Okay, I do know that you’re supposed to take pictures with the light behind you, but that view just wasn’t as nice as these ones so …

I chose our living room because it’s one of my pet projects in my quest to making Batam work. I love this space because it is sunny and airy, and I want to build on this by turning it into something cozy and fun.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I still have a long way to go [because I get distracted] and have only managed to add everything else that’s not the black couch, the 2 black sofas and the square table. (Unfortunately, they come with the house so there’s nothing I can do about them). On a good day I’d put a few of my potted plants here and there but I was too lazy to get them for this shoot so you’ll just have to do with fluffy-huggable Anais and Mr. Piddles instead ๐Ÿคญ

So anyhoot, this space represents the concept of home for me. Familiar, pleasant, comfortable, fun.

(1 down, 9 more to go ๐Ÿ‘Š) ๐Ÿคช

Home & Heart

Last Minute 2017 Goals

time-2980690_960_720

Hi everyone! How y’all doin? ๐Ÿ‘‹

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 โ˜น๏ธโ˜น๏ธ This really is a bummerย  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! ๐Ÿ˜

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! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ๐Ÿ˜ฑ) 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.ย  But this is just not something I want to take on at this time with the baby basically running my day. Then Iย  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.ย  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.ย  Luckily, I came across the idea of post-natal abdominal strengthening/recovery exercises before starting anything (well, this isn’t 100% true! ๐Ÿคฅ) 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!

postnatel-exercise-to-strenghten-muscles
source

3.ย  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 ๐Ÿ˜ Updates in the next upcoming posts! Mmmwah! ๐Ÿ’‹

 

Home & Heart, Knitting

So What Happened to Those Goals?

I don’t know if you even remember but I had 3 goals for June which I shared with you in this blogpost.

Did I slay them?

Weeeeell ….

b128dc86c8f832515fadcda54474c9a0

1.ย  Complete Introductory & Phase 1 Beginner of my Indonesian language lessons.

I made progress. (Promise, I did! ๐Ÿ˜‡) I finished all Introductory lessons and a good chunk of Phase 1 Beginner lessons. My vocabulary has increased, and my grasp of sentence construction has improved.

But!

Midway through, my brain just left the building (or my skull for that matter!) ๐Ÿ˜ฏ It just went “oh-kay, that’s enough!” and NO amount of prodding could revive the interest. So no, I did not hit this goal ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

2.ย  Knit my first sweater.

I also started real strong on this one. Take a look:

beginner knit sweater

And then I just went AWOL on her! Because I discovered something profound: I DON’T LIKE TO SEAM ๐Ÿ˜• ๐Ÿ˜• ๐Ÿ˜•

Good heavens! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

I LOVE knitting. As a matter of fact, I’m almost done knitting the back portion of another sweater.

But I just don’t enjoy seaming! ๐Ÿ˜ฃ ๐Ÿ˜– ๐Ÿ˜ซ

3.ย  Learn to make meatballs.

We still have not found the kind of meat quality we really like. And when my daughter gave the thumbs up after my second try, I left it at that and stopped production ๐Ÿ˜”

Adventurous cooking is difficult when ingredients are hard to find and … I might have allowed myself to get a bit discouraged there. (sniffle, sniffle)

making meatballs

Heart to heart conclusion:

I’ve procrastinated for 13 days on this post because I didn’t earn my gold stars. (Did I ever tell you I’m a type A?๐Ÿ˜ต๐Ÿ˜ต) And I’m gonna be honest with you – I did not enjoy June that much. When I look back it just feels like too much work and not enough fun. On some days it even felt like I was being chased by a mad dog! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ ๐Ÿ˜ฑ (I’m exaggerating here for dramatic effect).

I’ve always enjoyed setting goals though and this time, I guess there were just some un-anticipated obstacles. But I did make progress and, for lack of anything else to say, don’t worry about the sweater. I got A PLAN! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

July is looking much better though ๐Ÿ’–ย ๐Ÿ’– (Yay!) Pilates, books, knitting and … NO pressure (body roll!! ๐Ÿ˜‚ ๐Ÿคฃ)

Monthly Reviews & Blog Updates

Gettin’ Busy With It

running-498257_960_720

The good thing about sitting with boredom for a while and hearing what it has to say is that I always end up with a pretty bangin’ list of things to do or learn ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ˜

It’s not the exception this time, which is why I now have the appropriate reaction down pat – put all routines on hold, grab pen and paper and give boredom it’s airtime.

It’s a pretty long list usually as I don’t censor. I then give the list time to simmer and, sooner or later a few will hold my attention long enough to become goals ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ˜

And so, since it’s the first Monday of June — Happy 1st Monday of June to y’all!!! — I figured it would be the perfect day to announce my goals for the month ๐Ÿ™† ๐Ÿ™†

7d40aad80f81b903954ec95c1c769ba8

I love having monthly goals โค โค They give focus and direction, as well as something to celebrate at the end of the month.ย  I picked 3 for June, and I feel that they give enough variety without necessarily diffusing my focus:

  1. Complete Introductory & Phase 1 Beginner of my Indonesian language lessons.

The fact that I haven’t seriously sunk my teeth into learning the Indonesian language is like a leaky faucet that’s keeping me up all night.ย  It’s about time I got it fixed! ๐Ÿ‘Š ๐Ÿ‘Š

ย  ย  ย  2.ย  Knit my first sweater.

I am still not over the fact that there are also circular needles and double pointed needles – I thought there was only those straight ones! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

โ€ฆ so from there you can imagine how lofty this goal actually is for me. But as I sat and learned how to knit-purl-knit-knit, I realized my truth: I came here for the sweaters!

So I’m just gonna dive right in and learn as I go along ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

ย ย ย ย ย  3.ย  Learn to make meatballs.

Just because ๐Ÿ˜‚ ๐Ÿคฃ

images

As you can see I’m very specific with all 3 so there’s no room for distraction.ย  And of course, to keep me accountable (and so we can have delicious chats), I’ll be blogging about my progress as I go along.

I’m actually pretty excited ๐Ÿ˜€ Wish me luck!

And now what are YOUR goals for June? ๐Ÿ™‚