Happy birthday Ah ma

Ah ma and her granddaughters. It was ah ma’s birthday today, we had a simple celebration, some yummy food and a birthday cake.

My ah ma is such a fabulous mother, her birthday should probably have been celebrated with a bit more fan fare. But I’m not sure she would have wanted it that way, she’s always saying don’t mahuan. In fact, she chose to have ramen for her birthday lunch, putting my Ah pa’s preference before her own as usual.

It was a yummy lunch, for me, it was nice just spending time with my parents.

I count my blessings that my kids are getting to grow up with their loving grandparents. I also know how lucky we are to be able to have my parents living a stone’s throw away. For almost a decade, we lived apart in different countries. Contact was through daily emails and occasional phone calls. Perhaps a trip home every year for a few weeks?

I pinch myself sometimes to think how great it is that I get to see my parents all the time now. May we never take that for granted.

Ah ma is the cliche doting grandmother who eats all the bones and leaves the meat for her kids. I know how difficult and tough it is for her looking after my kids, it’s tough for me physically and mentally, it must be even more tiring for Ah ma. And yet she does it with grace, love and patience. I’ll be thankful if I could be half as good a mummy to my kids as she is to me.

Happy birthday Ah ma. May your worries fly away, may your dreams come true, may you be happy and healthy always.

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Life

Mine! All mine! 😂

Saitaomei is at such a cute age, she’s been giving us so much joy 😍. I especially love it when she flashes her smile at me, but let’s face it, I’m bias towards my kid, I even find her cute when she cries.

Hi mummy, I is standing. This is her favourite activity nowadays, pulling herself to standing and wobbling on her unsteady feet.

My big girl. She’s so expressive nowadays, her latest thing is saying ‘how about xxx?’ when she’s asking for something. For example if we ask whether she would like some rice for lunch, she might ask ‘how about corn?’ as an alternative. It really works this suggestive tone of hers!

Still obsessed with selling icecream. I wonder whether she will ever outgrow this, I hope not.

We are so pleased that she’s settling well in her new daycare, she doesn’t cry at drop offs anymore and hugs her teacher.

Work is a bummer nowadays. But I have good friends who are always supportive (and will buy you chocolates, flowers and glitter bomb you to let you know that they’ve got your back) and a lovely family who are always there for me. I have my cute Saitaomei who stretches her hands out to me for a cuddle and my Saitaoha who shrieks ‘mummy!mummy!’ when she hears me turning the house keys. What else can I ask for?

Interviews

Today I was on the panel for three interviews that felt like they would never end. Even though the process was painful , I reminded myself that I was lucky to be on the other side of the table. I’ve just agreed to be on the panel for two other job positions, seriously, I’ve got to learn to say no. I was also asked to mentor a staff member ‘what?! Are you sure she wants me as a mentor? What could she learn from me?!’ I exclaimed to my potential mentee’s boss. In the end I also agreed, on the condition that the mentee could reject her boss’s poor choice of her mentor if she didn’t want me 😅.

There are days when I miss my old job. Perhaps not that job itself, but the confidence that comes with the years of experience, the comfort of reliable teammates and the support of great bosses. I do enjoy the independence of my current role, but it does get lonely sometimes. I’m not quite sure what I’m doing or whether I’m doing it right, part and parcel of stepping into new territory I guess.

Ending with a cute (if I may say so) picture of Saitaomei in her new pjs. I’m missing her big sister tonight, I know her papa is missing her too. Ah well, we will have her tomorrow night and indulge ourselves with lots of hugs and kisses.

Sleepless in Perth

Deer caught in the headlights. It was midnight or possibly 1am at this point, I was so tired. But Saitaomei was still very 精神. She was unsettled for the rest of the night and still woke up at 5.30!

As the clock ticked along and the baby refused to sleep, I started getting anxious because it was nearing dawn and I had to get ready for work in a couple of hours. I thought to myself ‘I can’t do this’. Don’t worry, these thoughts of desperation only hit during the wee hours of the morning when I’ve had continuous sleepless nights. They usually dissipate by the morning when the baby smiles at me.

Like this ❤️❤️❤️.

Sometimes when my parents take Saitaomei for the night, I’m so so scared to msg my mum in the morning to ask how Saitaomei or Saitaoha was for the night. When the words ‘slept very badly’ or ‘didn’t sleep at all’ appear on my screen, my heart just sinks. Sometimes I think I should just stop asking because the guilt is crushing. But I still do, always hoping it was a good night and my parents got some sleep.

Ok I’m going to crash now at 7.30pm. One hour and I’ll get up to pump. I love my girls but some days I wish I could take a day’s leave from parenthood.

Saitaomei crawls

Hmm what is this you’re offering me papa?

Can eat or not?

Let me have a taste. Tastes like paper.

I prefer broccoli but never mind, still can eat. Nom nom nom.

Hehe. My Gung Gung has been training me, crawling is easy.

Tadah! Hooray, I’m mobile now, freeeedom!

Father’s Day

The weekends are usually quite tiring because we have both kids. When they’re both together under one roof, it means disrupted sleep and generally lack of sleep. But the weekends are also the best because both my babies are with me, and R!

So happy 😃. Saitaomei not quite getting the hang of selfies.

Hehehe, love Saitaoha’s smile in this picture.

Mei mei’s favourite person is her jeje.

Hello? Is it Father’s Day? As usual this munchkin wakes up early despite playing from 4-6am. Sometimes I wonder how I function with such poor quality sleep. Sometimes when I come home from work, I’m so exhausted that I can’t even bring myself to talk to R. So I’m completely silent for at least an hour and start feeling more human after a shower.

Naughty papa offering the bub coffee! She was very interested.

Happy Father’s Day papa R.

Another one of papa with his favourite girls. I truly believe Father’s Day was great for him because he loves his daughters. Plus, Saitaoha said ‘I Lapp you papa’ today and gave him a hug and kiss. That papa totally melted.

Italian for our family dinner. It was to celebrate my fabulous ah pa of course. He is the best ah pa and Gung Gung in the world hands down. Sometimes I feel sorry for R because I unfairly compare him with my ah pa, and no one in my eyes, can beat my ah pa in best father category.

Haha Saitaoha gives the thumbs up for the food. Actually the food wasn’t as good as usual, I’m not sure I would return. Oh wait, I have a voucher so I will haha.

Saitaomei was very good throughout dinner, keeping herself occupied with her cucumber slice.

This is the face of a baby who has had too many cucumber slices😂.

It was a simple day with simple presents, simple activities like grocery shopping with the kids and dinner with the family. The kids were extra sweet to their father today and I’m glad because being a papa is pretty tough so they deserve all the love, recognition and celebration too. Happy Father’s Day to the wonderful papas out there.

Neighbours

Back in our Kuching home, we had a Malay family as neighbours. I still remember Aunty cooked the best ayam masak merah which she would gift a pot to us during Chinese New Year. We always visited their beautiful home during Hari Raya and they would visit ours during CNY. It was nice having lovely neighbours and we were sad when they eventually moved away.

During my nomad uni life I had lots of different neighbours, most of them we didn’t even know by sight. We were quite friendly with our last neighbour though, especially after Saitaoha came along.

My parents and I live a house apart, and luckily we have the nicest neighbours that live between us! They are so polite, generous and friendly. Every couple of days they will knock on my parents door to gift them with fruits and veggies from their garden. Aunty often gives us food that she has cooked like buns, curry puffs and spring rolls.

Yesterday they dropped off a giant pot of Burmese noodle soup, it was our first time trying this national dish, R really liked it.

So in return we cooked them Sarawak laksa, haha, I am loving this neighbourly exchange of culture. Mostly I’m just really pleased that my parents are getting such a warm welcome to Australia by their lovely neighbours. I’m glad neighbourly relations are still strong and thriving in our neighbourhood.


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