Lukie @ 4

June 14, 2017

Dorking, Surrey
4 years old!

Dear Lukie,


As I sit down to write your  birthday letter this year I am struck by something that makes me both excited and a bit sad at the same time–you are no longer a baby. How time flies, I feel like I just held you in my arms yesterday, so Diddy and sweet. 4 years later I am starting to see that you have grown fearfully and wonderfully, you are a unique person starting to reclaim your independence and develop your own personality. I am proud of you as always.

Now that you’ve grown, I see and hear you more and more each passing day- it is you that makes you my Lukie. You are super outgoing, confident, friendly, brave, strong, adventurous, hardworking and loving. I am very grateful that despite the hardships and struggles of our daily lives I get to watch you grow into you each day.

This has been a significantly big year for you, you have adapted to all the changes, challenges and adventures that we threw at you, there have been lots of them and there will be more to come my lieveling 😘. From having your baby sister in October which wasn’t easy for you but you dealt with it like a rock star, to travelling and moving about. I am super proud of you for handling everything like a pro, In every new place, situation, challenges and milestones you embraced the changes and carried on with confidence, just to remind you we will always be few steps behind you but we will always be there to catch you when you fall and to guide you in every step of the way. You were quick to make new friends and explore the surroundings around you. I am sure that these things will always be a part of your life.

In about a month and a bit we will be moving to a completely different place, different country, different people, different language- everything will be different, this then will be your new abode, 3rd house in 4 years! Everyday I feel you when you tell me how you’ll miss calling out your friends and aunties in the neighbourhood,  you spend most of everyday playing in the garden calling out Leon or granny, walking to the forests nearby, cycling and racing with your friends on your bicycles and inviting friends over for play dates (your best friend is Leon, and you two play at each others houses, mostly at Leon’s everyday).

When you aren’t playing outside, you enjoy singing, reading books, playing and building with your mega bloks. You enjoy pretend play and you will give us names, for the moment daddy is Norman Price the naughty boy from Fireman Sam, you kept calling me Elvis because I dance and sing a lot to cheer you up and you call your beautiful sister Station Officer Steele maybe because she is a teeny bit bossy.

You play football although you aren’t really a ball person but for the sake of playing you kick the ball with dad, you used to be so obsessed with them that you even take a ball with you as you nap. You love riding your bike especially now that you can do it without stabilisers,  you went for it on the slopes in the skate park with your balance bike, I cannot believe you’ve grown a lot and that you can do all these things, that’s a lot of things learned in just a year.

You even adopted mommy’s baby Elmo and sleeps with you every night, you hug him ever so tightly especially when you get scared. Elmo has become your friend and your clown protector. At this stage you still move to our bedroom just for the sake of getting cuddles at night which I like.


And, as far as protectors go, you are starting to be quite a good one yourself! You love your little sister so much and, when you aren’t trying to wrestle her or steal her toys, you are very caring toward her. You insist on being the one to go get Ash up from her nap every day. I stand outside the door when you go in to get her and I love listening to you greet her with “Good morning, Bussy!”. I hope that this bond and love you have for each other stays the same as time goes by.

Lukie, my boy, it has been a joy watching you grow and change and mature this year. I am so pleased with the boy that you are, and I can’t wait to see the man who you become some day.

Today is your birthday and that your future would be as bright and magnificent as your little 4-year old dreams. That you would continue to grow into YOU with the joy that comes with it.

Lukie, you are no longer a baby. What you are is a gift, a blessing, a privilege. You are no longer a baby, but as long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be. Thank you for letting me be your mommy.

I love you most!

Mommy

P.s : Daddy and Ash loves you too, not only this much but to infinity and beyond. 

The Three-nager

So we made it through babyhood, terrible two’s and about to graduate with the three-nager stage, it was dreadful, it was tormenting, it was fun. I heard from a friend who survived the trenches like us and has survived to tell the story, the best stages of parenthood is yet to come.
So the tormenting three’s huh.. a combination of a three years old energy and mentality but the attitude of teenagers 😊. 
Our son started of his three-nager stage by having little opinion from the start of it and has overgrown towards the end of it. We thought the behaviour is erratic but the fact of the matter is they merely express their opinions with a dash of irrationality and mixed temperament which they are yet to learn to achieve the perfect concoction. 
I remembered when L turned two a lot, even a bucket loads of information about terrible two’s, even warnings from grannies, mommies and bloggers. But where the hell is the unforeseeable predictions about three’s, it took us by surprise,  no one ever saw the tormenting three’s coming.
At 18 months we hear a surge of words that turns to verbal explosion, and at three’s? It’s not only a surge in length but a surge in why’s and a surge of bossiness.  It’s a surge of tormenting everything. But still the love prevails right?!
Common scene at home:
M: What do you want for breakfast? 
L: Toast with Jam please mommy, I want it cut like a triangle. 
M: WHY ARE YOU NOT EATING?!
L: hugggggggyyyyyyy,  hugggggggyyyyyyy,  hugggggggyyyyyyy..the shape is not right, uh uh uh, I want water please, uhm I want this I want that
M: (on the verge of shouting) eat now or il take it away.
Dealing with lots of tormenting situations at home made me well proofed for this. Sometimes I ignore the fact that he whines then he’ll eat it anyway, but I am not a perfect parent and I lose my rag sometimes.
I mean my son is very responsible, polite, outspoken (a little too much sometimes) and kind but he has his days too. There are days where he will absolutely cry for everything, have we been such naggy parents that we created a little diva, a little drama king, but hey these too shall pass.
The hardest part is, trying to negotiate  a deal but he would stop listening half way, is it a man thing? I mean selective hearing, my husband sure does that. Or why explaining things they would run, change the topic (he is getting better at it) or just pretend not to listen, but I think they do that selective hearing bit because they learn how to filter which things are beneficial and not beneficial to them. Or sometimes maybe I nag too much and just won’t leave him be. I think I should stop having that bad habit, it’s not healthy.
The best advice I was given by my mother few years ago was that rather than keeping on nagging at them we have to give them a little bit of liberty to decide what they actually want so there is an involvement and connection rather than just barking orders at them. So rather than saying here is your lunch now eat please, I would rather say, Please L what do you want to eat for lunch? We have chicken nuggets and cod fingers. It works out on most days but obviously everyday is different and everyday is interesting.
I made some investigations and found a really cool article from buzz feed. 
1. You live in constant fear of how to cut the shape of their sandwich or toast. Do they want triangles today, rectangles, squares? And when they do tell you, they change their mind right after you cut it.
2. They say things like (with hands firmly placed on hips), “I don’t want to clean up, I want to do what I want to do!”
3. You go through three or more wardrobe changes a day. Please just pick a already!
4. Your child goes boneless the second you remind them that a transition is coming, especially when they are asked to stop playing. By the way, when was this ability given to children? You know, lay limp and double your body weight so mom can’t move you. It’s a talent reminiscent of a possum playing dead…
5. They run away from you when it’s time to get dressed, or leave a play place, or do anything they deem unnecessary. In fact running away from you is their favorite activity.
6. To nap or not to nap, that is the question. A threenager’s answer will always be emphatically “NO!” Unless of course it’s time for school, and they crawl into bed because they’re “tired.”
7. They want three of everything because they are three.
8. At red lights they yell, “Go… GOOO!” Threenagers do not possess patience.
9. Speaking of the car, you have to leave 10 minutes earlier so they can buckle their own car seat by their “OWN SELF!”
10. You realize they’ll be a great trial lawyer one day when they’ve just negotiated their way out of a time-out.
When I saw that post I was laughing so hard in the kitchen that maybe at some point passers by thought I am a lunatic or I completely gone bonkers having to deal with two children, but yeah it’s because I can relate in every single one of them!
So mums we are not alone, take a deep breath, try to see the funny side and if all else fails I find going out is an absolute saviour to get rid of unwanted energy and attitude.

Our Brexit

Yes! We are having our own Brexit and we want it in style. Let the Land of bicycles and tulips welcome us with open arms. Everything is just falling into place at the right time and in the right place. We are delighted about the outcomes of our decision, of course I still hang out with my friends here, the so called “round the block gang”, surely I will miss my girls and the kids whom I love so dearly.  Sometimes when we get to talking the cold feet comes back, how convenient it is to just speak the language and be myself. Sometimes I think it’s the change that I am worried about. 

Brexit is not all that bad, our only way now is to move forwards and look forward whatever is waiting on the other side of the pond. You know, The UK has been my home for several years and it wasn’t all that bad, except for the occasional ” chinese” taunt which I admit is not that bad, but I must say not all Asians are Chinese. And the ” what kind of 3rd world pharmacy school have you been” il have you know my school is not so bad, and yes! I had my Master’s in one of the universities here so I wasn’t sure which 3rd world pharmacy school are they pertaining about, but despite the odd remarks, I kept calm and carried on. 

There are lots of things I love about the country, the beautiful nature, the adventure farms, the museums, parks, the beautiful people and the list goes on. The young people hanging out and sharing cheerful stories,  makes me realise that The  UK indeed has a future, these younger generation all looking so innocent now will become the future of whatever is left in The United Kingdom. 

Every day is another day closer with our Brexit, it makes me realise how much I’ve fallen in love with the country, how much il miss the walks we do every weekend, how much we’ll miss playing with the children in the neighbourhood. But as I’ve said in the previous post, I think I’m just scared of all the changes that will happen, emotionally and socially.  

Whenever I think about the tall people, the bicycles, the language, I get a bit stressed out and panic. Deep inside I want everything to be perfect but I just can’t get my head around it yet but I’m getting used to the idea of having our family home few steps closer, more than ever. 

Despite the political issues, the animosity and all. I still think The United Kingdom is a beautiful country and will always have a special place in my heart, it taught me a lot of things and develop my personality as I am now.

#iloveUK

So long my second home

7 years, the UK has been my second home, 7 years of unforgettable experiences, fantastic friends, amazing and rich culture. 7 years, I was able to build my life, met people who taught me important life lessons,  awesome learnings. 7 years I managed to prove everybody that I can change, adapt to change and be independent and resilient.

Sad to end so soon, but I am now looking forward for whatever the next phase of our lives. New environment, people and culture. Wow! It’s overwhelming and scary, the language barrier, culture shock, the very tall people, and also the below sea level bit, i will be the first to drown when there’s a great flood (a very colourful humour, not! ),the bikes, the tulips, the rain (I’m not sure if il love that, but what the hell). 

I have been revising about the dutch exam, man it’s hard! Half of which is easy to read, but when I start hearing things the guttural G especially, I get goosebumps. My my my, how am I and what am I gonna do. Il be leaving friends, acquaintances and the nature which I love, for a country as flat as a pancake and people as tall as towers. The bikes are plenty more than the citizens of the country I think. But then seeing what the children will have, man it amazes me. The universities are to die for, the school places are plenty which mean we don’t have to go through the whole stress and process we did and experienced here. Our children’s world is just there, waiting for them. 

It is a goddamn massive operation, it is an expensive one, it will be a super stressful (due to moving) and a complete start of whatever we are used to. Tons of papers to sort out, exams, visas, work. Fuck my life! It will be a long, hard, confusing and a lot of emotions sort of one year. My lovely sweet hubs family is there so it won’t be all that bad. I can get support even just via a phone call, we can go out when everything gets a bit too much. My children will see their uncles and aunties and will have a relationship with them, that’s a good thing right? At least family is nearby, that is also my family so I am happy. 

I just wish people won’t be too harsh when I try and speak Dutch and ignore the grammatical errors as I learn it. I have to get used to cycling everywhere (which I love), I can’t wait to make friends and take a different learning path from whatever I am taking here now, I hope settling in won’t be as bad, maybe for the 1st month il be in my own bubble, figuring out what to do until I gain courage and confidence to leave home. It will be an interesting 1st month, lots of trial and error.

 England we will miss you, until we meet again. 

Hardest and most amazing job ever! 

I know I posted few weeks ago that I miss my work. I still do, but the work I’m doing now is way harder than dispensing medication and calculating dosages. The work I am doing now can make or break someone’s future. Sometimes I can’t get enough sleep, or no sleep at all. Sometimes I can only eat 2 meals or sometimes no meal at all. I’m not skint or anything it’s just that I am very busy, the tasks I have to do, the chores I have to finish, on top of that my bosses need me to translate something,  interpret things, respond to constant demands. 

In school I manage to finish my bachelor’s alright, then moved on to my master’s with exceptional colours, going on to work, I have constant invitations for interviews and job prospects, but this I don’t understand, I finished all those hurdles in my life and never caved in, but this job I am doing now I am nearly crawling at the end of the day. It is so difficult that on a Monday I am already wishing and praying for Friday to come quick.

The hardest job is rewarding too. I can work from home and never have to wear my fancy work suit, I can wear my shirt and jeans, teach somebody, encourage somebody and get on with life. There are days when I feel like I am a teacher, teach the children, read books,  paint some pictures and mark their progress. There are days when I am the chef, I fulfill the food requests, teach them to bake, what’s healthy and beneficial for our well being. There are days when I am the driver, take them to places, show them around, teach them about places, anything we see in our surroundings and how much we can help to improve it and what are our responsibilities too. There are days when I am the health care provider, when they are sick, I diagnose and treat, and be the doctor they want me to be, I calculate the dosages and dispense it lovingly to my patients and be the pharmacist they need me be, I then move on to caring for them, fulfilling their needs, checking them round the clock and be the super nurse I have to be. There are days when I am the cleaner, cleaning after their mess, picking up bits and pieces. And much more.

Being a mother doesn’t stop from there, from being someone else, we are someone else all the time, we can be whatever we want may it be a driver, a doctor, a maid, a cook etc. But at the end of the day we are the mother and our role is much complex than what is perceived. We are the jack of all trades, we multi task and we are very adaptable with our working environment, we can work in extremely chaotic, catastrophic and crazy work environment and yet we do it with pride. We can keep calm even under extreme pressure. We have longer patience even with the constant tormenting. We are in command, we are the captain of our own vessels and yet no matter how high we think of ourselves these teeny crazy weenies are our bosses and we take their lead. 

We work more than 100 hrs per week, nothing to minimal wages, Monday to Sunday,  on call every night and no holiday until the foreseeable future. Regardless of all the exhaustion and craziness in the umpteenth time this is the most fulfilling job ever, as we get to see the milestones,  the day to day progress and we get to raise individuals who will learn to share the learnings we teach them.

I can say proudly I am a SUPER Mommy (and I don’t care what others think of that! 🖒🖒🖒🖒🖒

All of us are SUPER  MOMS in our own special ways!😘😘😘😘

Write soon xx

Motherhood at its best

Motherhood has its ups and downs, each and everyone has our own fair share of struggles, stories and embarrassments. It is in motherhood that we learn about raising and celebrating our children, the children that we have, not the children what we thought we have or the children we were expecting. That we should be grateful and understanding that our children are the children that they are supposed to be, rather than what we are expecting to have. Our children are teachers that teaches us what kind of parents we are supposed to be. 

Motherhood is hard enough, the chores, the tantrums, the sleepless nights, the nightmare of parenting, the eyes of strangers looking (whether we are doing a great job), the criticisms (everybody is a goddamn critic), every single molecule in our parenting thing will go through that thread hole because everyone around us will think they are perfect enough to advice and criticise us. Everybody will give unsolicited fracking advices. It is up to us to filter what’s useful and not, and it’s up to us to raise our children.

It’s never easy to raise children, it’s either you make them or break them. Just looking at it, it seems to be a daunting, stressful and challenging job, well it is and nobody is perfect. Parenting, is such a job that it evolves us to become a better person and know our self worth.

Parenting requires resilience,  no matter how resilient we are in terms of adversities and challenges, we still need support, love, encouragement and inspirations that is for everybody for sure. We loathe criticisms as we are all different and we have different styles.

The hopes that we have for our children, the dreams that we want them to be, the possibilities there are, the happiness they give us, the love, they make us feel good about ourselves and to remind us that we are doing a spectacular job. The smiles they bring that brightens the whole gloomy world around us, the efforts we make to make these parenting hurdles easier. The difficulties we experience to bring the best in us. The unique abilities each and every child has, same for us parents. The storms that we experience to make us strong and to be the best people we can be. 

It is not a joke to parent a child, it is quite a job but the satisfaction we get when people praise them, when they share or when they get a bit flustered (which means they turn to us for attention) about things, it is a unique experience for each and everyone.

The embarrassments, oooh I have plenty, but I am no longer embarrass to embrace my flaws. Because one thing I figured, an embarrassing moment will make your world a lot brighter. I once had the guts to warm up my pizza from the microwave after having a rough night, yes I turned the damn thing on and to my disappointment my pizza isn’t there, so I was looking for it in the oven, fridge or wherever just to find it in the frying pan in the hob. I almost burnt the house down there. And there’s this instance I’ve been looking for my glasses for days just to find them in the fridge, or a poo-nami explosion, these experiences makes parenting a wonderful experience not a dreadful one.

I love the grunt work, the noise, the cries, the laughs, the accidents (wee and poo), the arguments (between me and dad, or dad and L, or L and me), the adventures, the craziness, and most especially the love.

Love makes up for everything.

The cries meant I need you more than you know.

The screams doesn’t mean I hate you but you are my rock.

The hugs that are super nice when you are tired.

And the grunt work, brings happiness because at the end of the day we are raising wonderful and resilient children.

Write soon 😘😘😘😘😘

Panic Buyer

What’s the difference when shopping pre babies and shopping post babies? Good question, pre babies I like doing it, I find it relaxing having some me time, smelling some scented candles that you won’t bother to buy, going from aisle to aisle, relaxed. Post babies (toddler and a baby),I panic buy, every single time! I just want to get the hell out of the shop before one of the children explodes.

I dread it when I am booked for an appointment, or run an errand may it be to the shops or post office, the dreadful part is? Getting and waiting in the queue. Queues makes my life goddamn miserable, every single time! It’s a tried and tested way to work out how short your fuse is. It is dreadful because at this point the children will reach their melting point, which both the child and excuses (solid and liquid, excuses are liquid because it depends if you can sway them with the fluidity of the excuse or otherwise) exist in equilibrium. The higher the purity of your excuse the smaller the range for a melting point, such as finding a buffer to equalise the already imminent meltdown. Gosh meltdowns are dreadful especially when it happens around strangers, all eyes on you smirking or taking pity on you, adding up to the already escalating stress levels. 

There are days when I take them to the shop and they decide to behave provided you buy what they put in the basket or trolley (for L that is). They choose things you don’t even want to buy then you forget what you were intending to get. Anyway, shopping is so much stressful around children,  the shouting (aaaaaarrrhhh), they lie down on the floor (when they want something and you won’t allow it), they cry  (for everything), then the endless why’s  (for god knows the question) that makes your head explode. I was always good in sticking with the budget and shopping list, but now I panic, and I panic buy, let’s say in my list it says 1x  organic carrots any first bag of carrots I see I buy x 2. That is so me panic buying,  so now I learned my lesson I go shopping every Friday evening or Saturday morning once a week, alone and leave daddy to deal with the children and to save me from breaking the bank.

On some days I deliberately take L and let him decide which veg  or fruits he wants to eat, hand him his pretend credit card (a garden centre club card), let him pretend pay for it and that gives him an idea how everything works and sure when he gets home he is so keen to eat what he’s chosen. It works every time. 

Shopping shouldn’t be stressful but a baby and a toddler is a very bad combination you can take one or the other not both, it’s going to be a catastrophe. As soon as you get distracted by the baby’s crying before you know it the basket is filled with crap! And you are just doomed, because whatever is in there, they know when you take it out.

I tried different strategies when taking them shopping but this one is the winner, I make sure baby is sleeping (soundly) and the toddler, I let him choose whichever treat he wants (only one!) and he is only allowed to open or eat it with the following conditions, if he is well behaved until we finish shopping and if he eats and finishes his main meals for the day, then he not only behaves for the whole shopping duration but for the rest of the day, hahaha! Talking about being smart ha!

Anyway, shopping alone without the children feels like a holiday, quiet, chill and I can take my time (a little bit).  But now and again I don’t mind having somebody, rolling on the floor, makes the experience a little bit interesting.

Write soon 😘😘😘😘😘