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SAHM to FTWM

Sorry for the long hiatus.
I’ve recently moved onto the next phrase of my life.
It wasn’t an easy decision…
But, it was one that Kitson and myself made collectively.

I am thankful for the opportunities given by many people around me.
I’ve fianlly returned to full time employment after 10 years as a Stay At Home Mom.

I’ve always held high admiration for mothers who juggle between work and home.
Now that I’ve done it for 4 weeks,
I must say my admiration has gone to a whole new level of idolization!

Sorting out childcare for James was top on our list. The childcare crunch in Punggol has not improved since our appearance on Common Cents. We are still on that ridiculous waitlist! Thankfully, we were able to find one near my work area that fits into our budget.
ichiban montessori purvis street

James aced through his first day at school. But, the subsequent days became harder when he knew that I had to head off to work and won’t be in school with him. James cries, “Mummy, mummy no school! Me home!” while sticking to me like a piece of Velcro. It was heart wrenching having to peel him away. But like a broken record, I went on reassuring him that I’ll be back for him first thing after work. Now he copes better. Just the other day he tells me, “I like school!”.

Our only struggle right now is the peak hour train rides.

We can’t live without the stroller.
Sleepyhead James won’t wake up in the morning, and would fall asleep on our way back home…
SAHM returing to Work

People gives you the “EYE” when you try to board the crowded train with a stroller.

We tried going without the stroller, with James in the sling. It seems like a good idea till I tripped. Scraped my knees while James bumped the back of his head. Besides, James was getting way too heavy for the sling, I ended that day with an aching back and shoulder.
SAHM goes back to workSAHM goes back to work

We’ve also tried different modes of transport without the stroller. The slow bus ride was relaxing, and James was well entertained by just looking out of the window.
James taking the bus

Seems like a workable idea until…..
terrible 2s James crying all the way back home

After school. One minute he was happily walking, the next minute he was kicking up a big fuss and before I knew it, he crashed out! I had to carry him all the way back home. Let’s just say my biceps were a lot firmer after that day.

Peak hour train rides are extremely stressful! I catch myself cursing under my breath and aloud every now and then! #slowclap 6.9 million by 2030, I think by then I’ll have to board the train with someone’s armpits in my face!

#end of rant mode#

We’ve been blessed with 2 very independent older kids, who protested to the idea of employing a helper. We approached the school’s after care service for help. But, there was only placement for Hiroshi. Hiroshi’s therapist felt that he would greatly benefit from “structured” learning, and the school’s after care service is perfect especially when there is no adult supervision at home. We went ahead and placed Hiroshi in the school’s after care.
Hiroshi in Proteach Horizon Primary School

Sophia is discipline and fiercely independent. She manages everything all by herself for a couple of weeks before help arrives. Yes! We employed a helper despite violent objections from the kids.
Maid from Perfect Homes punggol plaza

We’ve all heard stories about helpers… Some good, some bad, and some extremes…

I am positive, and strongly believes in what comes around, goes around. As long as you treat one right and as part of your family, they will most likely reciprocate. And so far, it has been working. Our kids adore the helper, and our helper Ria feels happy.

Life is an adventure that we’ve never given much thoughts or plan for. I’m sure God has a plan and I’m just going to go with the flow.

This entry was posted in Family.

Celebration of diversity & friendship; St Patrick’s Day 2015

I am clueless about St. Patrick’s Day.

But, according to Kitson St. Patrick’s Day is a cultural and religious celebration that has been celebrated by many countries all around the world.

When we found out that there would be one happening in Singapore, we thought it would be an opportunity for the kids and myself to experience Irish tradition and culture in Singapore.

Amidst the sea of greens, we found ourselves well positioned at the heart of the St. Patrick’s Day parade located next to Asian Civilization Museum.

Parade Chairman Colin MacDonald with guest of honour Minister for Justice and Equality for Ireland Frances Fitzgerald and Ambassador of Ireland to Singapore, Geoffrey Keating.
St. Patricks day 2015 Guest of Honour

Beautiful music played by the Singapore Pipe Band Association.
St. Patrick's Day 2015 Singapore Bagpipes

We were pretty surprised to see Indian drummers in the parade.
Well, I guess this is what Singapore stands for when we talk about racial harmony.
St Partricks Day 2015 Indian Drumers

Some other participants of St. Patrick’s Day Parade: Gaelic Dragons Dragon Boat Team
St. Patrick's Day Singapore 2015 Gaelic Dragon

The Gaelic Lions. These kids are having so much FUN!
St. Patricks Day Singapore 2015

Everybody were enjoying themselves with smiles all around. It was like the Irish community coming together in celebration of being a part of Singapore’s diversified culture. It’s just another day of good fun for the Irish living in Singapore.

Parade Chairman Colin MacDonald addressing the crowd at UOB Plaza.
St. Patricks Day 2015 Singapore Guest of Honour

Drum Performance by Down Syndrome Association
St Patricks Day 2015 down syndrome association Signapore

Bali dance performance by Down Syndrome Association
St. Patricks Day down syndrome association Singapore

So touched to see society opening our arms and accepting differences at the St. Patrick’s Street Festival. Beautiful performance!

With the official radio DJs Shan and Cheryl from One FM 91.3.
St. Patricks Day 2015 Singapore

Sophia getting her face painted with Shamrock while James is happy with green candy floss.
st patricks day 2015 singapore 2015 face paintingSt patricks Day singapore 2015 Candy Floss

James’s first ride on a ZooMoov. And I bet you it won’t be his last.
st. patricks day 2015 Signapore zoomoov

Kids were bouncing off the walls from candy floss overloading while the adults badly needed a pit stop. We ended up in Heros located at Circular Road for early dinner.

For the first time in a very long time, Kitson and myself fully indulge in a glass of Guinness Stout. A reminiscence of our couple flying days in London. 😉
St patricks day singapore 2015

In our opinion, St. Patrick’s Day is a celebration of diversity and friendship rather than just merry making. Sláinte. Happy St Paddy’s Day!
St patricks day 2015 singapore

This entry was posted in Family.

10 Lessons 2014 taught me…

1. Things happen for a reason.
2014 started with Hiroshi suffering from a hairline fracture on his feet. I was allowed to pick him up from the school’s general office. And for the days that I arrived earlier than dismissal time, I would read whatever that was left on the magazine racks to pass time.
Hiroshi Hairline Fracture on feet

One of those fateful days, I’ve picked up a nicely illustrated book entitled “I Not Naughty!” by Lim Swee Huat. It turns out that “I Not Naughty” is a comprehensive handbook about ADHD/ADD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder/Attention Deficit Disorders). The book was simple and straight forward. The more I read, the more I thought that symptoms the author was illustrating sounded very much like Hiroshi.

Just to play it safe and to be absolutely sure, I emailed the school’s counselor to voice my concern. She promptly replied and set up an appointment for me to meet a child physiologist and an Occupational Therapist from Reach. Hiroshi was then being assessed and confirmed as ADHD. Specifically, Hyperactive-Impulsive Type.

2. Better late than Never
We were relived to finally understand why Hiroshi fidgets so much more as compared to the other kids. Sigh… Revelation after 9 long years. He has been attending weekly therapy and counseling sessions from REACH since then. We still cannot see that tiny glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel! As a mom, it pains me to see him struggle.
SingaporeMomBlogs Hiroshi studying ADHD

3. Just put your faith in God.
Sophia took the huge leap into Primary one. Apart from the stress of peer pressure that she puts unto herself, she generally enjoys school and copes really well.
Sophia's first day at school

4. Every child develops at their own pace.
James got diagnosed with isolated speech delay in May. We waited forever to see a speech therapist. But when we did, we gave up on the speech therapist after the first appointment. I’ll leave that story for another day… But the good news is James has been talking a lot more recently! He is finally making meaningful conversations!
James Isolated Speech Delay

5. Always look on the bright side of life.
It is still a constant battle over James’s eczema condition. It wasn’t as bad as before and we found out that his eczema flare up are usually food related. So we just needed to steer clear of food that he is allergic to. So for now, this is considered under control.
James eczema

6. Opportunity knocks when you least expected it.
I started working full time after 10 years as a stay at home mom. And since I had trouble securing childcare placement for James, I was allowed to go on a flexible work from home scheme. I am in Public Relations. Given my experience, it is an industry where I think my expertise would be put into good use. Couldn’t have asked for more!
AT Marketing Consultancy Natual Healings

7. Never be complacent and always work on your relationships
We survived our first 10 years of marriage without killing one another. Even though our relationship is still a work in progress, I am sure that we will make it to the next decade!
Keep working on your relationships

8. Surprise yourself when you keep learning.
Conceptualize, shoot and edited my very own videos for the recent Dulux Color Transformation Challenge. It wasn’t easy learning something new, but there is a sense of accomplishment when people tell me how much they enjoyed the videos.


9. We’ve been truly loved by everyone!
Huge thank you to families, friends, blog readers and random strangers for the overwhelming support in votes during the recent Dulux Color Transformation Challenge.
Dulux Color Transformation Challenge

10. There is always a better tomorrow.
2014 was memorable. But, we believe that 2015 would be even more spectacular! Wishing everybody 365 days of love, joy and happiness ahead.
Happy New Year 2015 from Family parenting mom blogger Irene Soh

We hope to make better connection with you; our readers in 2015.
So do like us on our facebook page and follow us on instagram to stay connected.

Let us know what you’ll like like to see on this blog
and we’ll do our best to make it happen.

This entry was posted in Family.

Dream Comes True with Dulux Easy Transformation

It has been a month since we started on our color transformation journey with Dulux. For us, it has been a journey of discovery with realization on how fast Hiroshi is growing.

He has always been fascinated with planes and enjoys traveling, so we all agreed that a travel themed room would be most appropriate for his room makeover.

BEFORE
Apart from the colorful blanket placed at the foot of the bed, there is no tell tale sign that this bedroom belongs to a kid. Too much clutter, too practical and too boring!
Dulux Paint Blogger Challenge. Inspired to Inspire. A new Color, A new Experience.

In the past, we’ve always been the typical play-it-safe kind of homeowners who prefers sticking to “safer” shades. But, through our color transformation journey with Dulux, we’ve learn so much more about using colors to renew and re-energise our homes.

AFTER
A blank canvas has unlimited possibilities.
Dulux Lakemount Blue walls with white ceiling.
Dulux Lakemount Blue

Choosing the color Lakemount Blue has been liberating for us. And they were right! A new color… A ((WHOLE)) new experience! The color blue feels restful and adds character to the entire room makeover.

Let’s take flight into our travel themed room.

Jem and KelWin putting on highlights of the travel themed room with Dulux wash and wear paints. Jem painted the silhouette of the world map in Dulux’s White Pearl. While Kelwin meticulously painted a retro looking airplane in Dulux’s O’hara (red), Peacan Tree (brown), White Pearl and Nobel Grey. It’s exciting to see our plans turn into reality
KelWin Jen Travel Wall Mural by Dulux Paint

Another element to consider when decorating a themed bedroom is the use of appropriate bedding. In order to compliment our lakemount blue walls and O’hara (red) airplane, we’ve decided to keep the color theme of the room to mainly blue and red.
Travel theme kids room bedding

Bear-y America and Bear-y Britain throw pillow effortlessly adds a dash of travel mood to the entire bedroom. My hunt finally paid off after shopping for days when I found this quilt cover set. Not only does it match the color theme of the bedroom perfectly, the reverse side of the quilt cover shows the picture of a traveller’s map too! Pretty isn’t it?
Kids Travel Themed Room Beddings

Hiroshi is madly in love with his old “new” bed.
Travel theme kids room

You’re off to great places, today is your day.
Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way! ~Dr Seuss

travel theme kids room dulux paint

We’ve also added a bedside lamp to create a softer look and warmer ambience against the Lakemount Blue walls. A splash of color from the bedside alarm clock to dress up the dark colored bedside table.

Study table is placed near the window for ample natural sunlight. Due to Hiroshi’s ADHD condition, we’ve kept his study table distraction free with just a study lamp and a mini rotating globe. Definitely a more conducive environment as compared to before.
travel theme kids room Study

Despite being such an active boy, one of Hiroshi’s favorite quiet time activity is reading. He can be at it for hours, so this cozy corner will be his spot to chill and unwind.

No travel themed room is complete without the use of world clocks. City names under the wall clocks are custom made vinyl stickers. Easily available at those printing shops located in Bras Basah Complex. They are very simple to put up too!
Dulux Paint Travel Themed Room WOrld Clocks

Notice the difference in wall colors?
We’ve painted this corner of the room in Dulux Song Porcelain, and this photograph doesn’t do the color justice! Song Porcelain is a beautiful shade of white infused with a subtle tinge of violet. Brilliant contrast to the Lakemount blue walls. Apart from giving the room an illusion of a wider space, it also sets the mood for the reading corner.
travel theme kids room by dulux paint

And on top of our new cabinet lies happy memories and souvenirs of our travel experiences. The big globe that sits on the cabinet provides hiroshi a fun and great way to look at the world we live on, allowing him to reminisce his past travel experiences and to plan his next itinerary.

Other than creating a cozy environment, the blue standing lamp and red bean bag perfectly blended our color theme into the quiet reading corner.
Dulux Paint room makeover | Travel themed kids room

The kids were delighted to play their part in the room makeover.
Dulux Room Makeover trave themed door name tag

We found some theme fitting decor from Spotlight and painted them with Dulux paints.
Dulux paint travel theme door tag

Bonjour! A customized door sign for the room.
Dulux paint travel themed name dog tag

Inspired by our room transformation?
Check out Dulux’s tips to giving your home a perfect make over.

Take advantage of the promotion and attractive paint packages offered by Dulux Paint.
Dulux Paint Singapore Discount Codes

What’s More?
SingaporeMomBlogs readers saves MORE!
Enjoy additional $30 off painting packages when you call 6265 0677 and quote IS550.
Dulux Paint Singapore Discount Code
(hotline is open on weekday 8.30am – 5.00pm)

VOTE and WIN
Starting from 8 December, vote for your favorite blogger with the best room transformation on Dulux Facebook page for a chance to win up to $600 worth of prizes!
Dulux Paint travel themed room

Our room transformation was a bliss with Dulux Professional Painting Services.

This is what you can expect from engaging professional painters from Dulux:
Pre-Paint
Before the actual paint job, the good people from Dulux came down to our house for a site inspection. Professional painting contractors from Dulux assessed our walls and gave us professional advice ranging form products to colors.

Actual Paint Job
The professionals from Dulux arrived on time and worked efficiently as a team. They shifted furniture and protected them with plastic sheets. And even laid mats on the floor to protect my flooring too!

The professional painters started taping edges of the electrical sockets, switches and skirting of tiles. Damaged walls from my DIY heydays were plastered. Sealant paint was painted over parts of the wall that needed cover ups. And then they proceeded to paint the entire room with care.
Dulux Professional Painters
Dulux Professional Painters

They even cleaned up after the paint job and shifted furniture back.

Have you heard of a paint job that comes with warranty? Well, you heard me right! Dulux offers 1 whole year of guarantee against paint defects for your newly painted homes too! Now that’s what I mean by having a peace of mind.

We were extremely satisfied with the services offered by Dulux Professional Painters. They have made our room transformation so much easier as anyone who has painted a room before can testify that painting is always the most difficult, and not to mention back breaking part of a room makeover. Two thumbs up for the professional team of painter at Dulux for such a wonderful job well done.

Hiroshi is happy that his personal space has been rejuvenated with a fresh coat of paint, with colors that spell calm and peacefulness.

Thank you Dulux for making a dream come true effortlessly!

For more inspirational ideas online, Please visit
– Facebook: fb.com/dulux.sg
– Instagram: @duluxg
– Pintrest: pintrest.com/duluxsg
– Youtube: youtube.com/duluxsingapore
– Website: www.dulux.com.sg

This entry was posted in Family.

Possessed by Singulair | Odd Temper Tantrums by Singulair

James started throwing a huge tantrum from not getting his own seat in the car. I tried ways and means to pacify him, but he was inconsolable. He screeched at the top of his voice, making the 15 minutes car ride an eternal torture for its occupants. He started hitting, scratching and even attempted to bite me. Despite my stern warning he continues with his atrocious behaviour.

The tantrum didn’t stop after the 15 minutes car ride. Like a Taiwanese soap opera, it continued on… Everyone was seated for dinner and the crying persisted on. Patrons from the restaurants looked at me as if I’ve failed terribly to keep my own son under control. While the staffs were a little more empathetic, trying to coax James out of his trance. I walked out of the restaurant. Patiently talking to James hoping that he will snap out of it real soon. But my desperate pleads were being ignored. Food were ordered, food were served. But, like a broken record James went on and on and on.

My patience was running thin. I gave up. Decided to just stay in the car with James and let him vent it out. He became uncontrollably violent. Other than hitting, scratching and bitting me, he started throwing himself at the backseats. I’ve seen temper tantrums of a 2 year old kid. But, I swear this tantrum episode is out of the ordinary. It is nothing I’ve seen by far.

Nothing significant has changed in our lives for James to be behaving like that…

So we thought James’s medications (Singulair) which was prescribed by the Pediatrician for his wheezing problem might be the trigger source of this sudden tamper tantrums. After researching online, we realized that there were others in the same predicament. We stopped Singulair for a couple of days, and saw drastic improvement to his behavior.

Have you experience strange behaviors from your kids after Singulair?
Is this medication really safe for kids?
Singulair Temper Tantrums