1 Dec 2016

That Sea Change

One of the big changes that I can finally share is we're moving. 

For awhile now we've been wanting to get a bigger home, but Sydney home prices in the areas we wanted to buy wasn't affordable for us, well not on a full timer and start up biz owner salaries. Even after discussing various scenarios with our financial planner, Sydney home prices was always the impacting factor. There were times I thought about going back to the corporate world just so I can have a consistent salary. But when I thought about giving up my business, or not being there for the boys, I would start to get emotional. I couldn't do it. 

Even if I did go back to work full time, I didn't want a massive mortgage hanging over our heads, in addition to the cost of raising a young family. Like I said prices of homes in the areas we did want to buy in had sky rocketed in the past two to three years. 

Friends would know, and maybe I may have even mentioned it on here, but we've been talking about a sea change for a long time. Even before we had children, Ian and I wanted to try living overseas but never did it because there was always an excuse we told ourselves which held us back. Well, no more!

For a good part of the first half of this year we were investigating areas to relocate to. We thought about schools, infrstructure, jobs and the kind of lifestyle we wanted and took those into consideration. We did day trips flying out to areas that we short listed to see if it was a place we could see ourselves raising a family. After a few months of research, thousands of kilometres of traveling, we found a new place we'll be calling home. 

Unfortunately it's just dirt right now and obviously will need to build a home on top of it, but I'm excited about the whole process. I'm excited to move, I'm excited to build, and I'm excited to start our life in a new place. I'm sure there will be challenges along the way, everyone who has built a home has a story, but I say 'bring it!' I love being challenged! 

A few people have questioned why move where there is no support in the form of family, no impeding job to move on to, or just questioning why move to this area altogether? All those fears are on our minds too, but if we dwell on them for too long it'll hold us back from trying. Ultimately we believe this is what's best for our family. It is a sea change for a reason. We don't want to be doing Sydney life somewhere else, we want a different life to what we have here. Not that it isn't amazing already, our priorities have changed and we're hoping to achieve an even better life by doing this move. 

So watch this space. I'll be sharing the journey with you all. The purchasing rules alone is slightly different in another state than Sydney. I'll save that for another post.

22 Nov 2016

Accidental Electronic Device Detox

Just wanted to share a little win I realised lately. The boys no longer play with the iPad's. Not at home, not when we're out, but definitely at the grandparents. 

It all started about a month ago. Eli dropped an iPad on the ground by accident. He was sitting down and had one on his lap. He stood up to grab some food and it fell a measly three inches. The screen cracked, so did hubby. Eli understood clearly he was in trouble and from the countless "I told you ..." statements he heard from his father and I he knew we were both extremely cross. So from theat moment he hasn't asked for it and because he doesn't play with one, his younger brother doesn't want to play with one either. 

Since they no longer get access to one, they're playing with their room full of toys more. They'll say to me "I'm bored!". Which I respond with, "go find something to do then", and surprisingly they go off and play together more. This also means they're fighting more too.

Going out to eat as parents you rely on the iPad. For us definitely when the boys were younger, when they start to get restless we would pull out an electronic device and put YouTube on. Now they have no choice but to sit there and wait until everyone has finished their meals. I think they're eating more because they're not distracted. I think they're more engaged in their surroundings because they're not looking at a screen. 

I'm not sharing this to show that I'm a better parent, far from it. I guess I'm sharing a progress made with my imperfect parenting. It wasn't like we decided on an electronic device detox, it just happened due to a situation. 

Another interesting outcome from this is I've realised the boys do actually like to play a lot. They're always asking me to join them in some made up game using toys and our imagination, or get outside to play basketball or even just play a game of passing a balloon to each other. 

They're very conscious of when I'm on the phone. They'll tell me to get off or follow me around bugging me until I give in and get off.

They do get access to an iPad when they're at the grandparent's homes. They'll ask for it shortly after they walk in. The other week Kai wanted to sleep over at the grandparent's place, and Kai never wants to sleep over. He was telling me to go home while he was holding the iPad. 

I hope we continue this non-iPad environment for as long as we can. Eli starts school next year so I know we can't keep the electronic devices away forever. But I know we can restrict it if we need to .... and the world will still keep spinning.

Next, getting them to eat more veggies. 

9 Nov 2016

Should I Keep Blogging?

(Asking Eli taking a photo of me. He include his Pikachu stuff toy in the shot)

It's been awhile since I've really blogged. 

It's funny the longer between posts the harder, or the more hesitant you become to publish stuff online. The content I spent some time working on becomes irrelevant, or I start to question whether it's even worth posting. 

Maybe I'll keep this post short and sweet just so I can get over these fears. Just like when someone starts going back to the gym, just rock up, have no expectations except getting your arse there. 

So I'm here. I'm little blogger-unfit, or unwell or insecure? It's been a long time since I've shared something personal.

There are exciting and challenging things I'm currently experiencing, and me maybe 3 years ago I would be sharing those things on here, but now I'm a little hesitant. 

I'm hesitant because the internet is evolving so quick and the online landscape is very different to three years ago. I never really use to worry about my online visibility, but with the increase of identity theft you just don't know who's taking your information and doing what with it.  

I'm hesitant because I'm re-evaluating my why? This blog isn't about making money or lifting my profile so I'm sharing my personal experiences for what? 

I'm hesitant because I run a business.  

I'm hesitant because my children are growing up and I've realised I'm creating an online foot print of them that they might not want me to share. Remember people once you post it online, it's on there forever! Will my boys be happy knowing I've shared their allergy episodes when they were babies online? Can it be used against them one day? 

I guess we all encounter these types of questions when we've been doing something for a long time and lose that spark that started it all for us. Just like going to the gym there comes a point you question it all. Usually, when you hit a plateau you need to re evaluate why you work out, or what your new goals are and change it up. 

Maybe I just need to change it up? 

Bloggers, business owners or even if you work for the man but usually love what you do, what do you do, or how do you keep yourself focused on your hustle or doubts? 

28 Sep 2016

Kai's 3rd Birthday

Last week we celebrated my second son Kai's 3rd birthday. It sure doesn't feel like he's only three. I feel like he's older ... it's hard to explain. Sure the year flew however, it felt like he was stuck at two for ages.

He's still a Mummy's boy. Always wants me by his side. It's annoying at times but I've learned to live with it. I may be his favourite person doesn't mean he's affectionate with me. He hates kisses, he's even told me he likes hugs, not kisses. He's very much an introvert. He doesn't like attention and he hides his face when people notice him. He won't even give family members a hello or high five when he initially sees them. 

He's still learning how to handle situations he can't control. Most of the time he reverts to yelling and sulking when things don't go his way, but now when I tell him, "it's okay you don't have to cry" or "tell me what it is you want" he calms down. We're still trying to help him learn this skill and it's been a tiring and tedious process. When I think about what starts the friction between the boys or the majority of the situations where I lose my temper at them, it's mostly to Kai's reactions to situations. 

He's talking more. I've shared my concerns about his lack of verbal communication but he's speaking so much more in the last 9-10 months. Putting him into daycare has helped. We mentioned to the centre our concerns and his attendance there has helped him come out of his shell and communicate more. 

He's actually adjusted to childcare a lot better than Eli did. We could say goodbye and leave the room without tears after a few weeks of starting. He looks forward to going and we can tell he really enjoys himself when he goes. 

He's cheeky. Have you seen his normal smile? It has cheeky written all over it. He tattle's, he annoys, he teases, he pulls pranks and he fights as good as he gets. 

He's definitely more strong willed and persistent. He will repeat whatever he wants until you give in. He will go at it for ages until the sound of his whining breaks you. I like to think I'm mentally strong, but this boy knows how to undermine me.

He still has a big appetite. He's not the fattest kid but he sure does love to eat. He grazes all day and still has room for his main meals. He's not shy to tell you he's "so so hungry" and he's first to come to the kitchen at the sound of food. Surprisingly he doesn't touch anything he knows he can't have. I don't need to hide eating chocolate or ice cream from him cause he knows he can't have it so he doesn't ask. 

We find ourselves talking and reflecting on Kai most nights. Not because we have major concerns about him, but because he's so interesting. His behaviour, his development, his personality, we can't help but discuss how far he's come these past few months.  

Happy 3rd birthday Kai. You make parenting .... hard. But your character, personality, and mannerisms is what's unique about you. I pray you continue to thrive in your development and grow into the person you're meant to be. We love you so so much. 

2 Aug 2016

Happy 5th Birthday Eli

Last week we celebrated Eli's 5th birthday and this my annual birthday post.

Happy birthday Eli. When I think about you, my heart and eyes begin to fill. I’m so grateful to have been blessed with you as my first child. You're sweet, loving, thoughtful, beautiful and intelligent little human. You're a good kid and I'm already blown away by your maturity and loving nature. 

As you've grown another year you've developed more into who you're meant to be. You're heart and mind is a lot more mature than people your own age. I know this because of the way his eyes water up when one of dad’s jokes goes a little too far and you try to hide your tears. Or when you asks me if I had a nap so I could rest. Or when you ask for things but then question whether it's expensive, cause you've heard us say those things in the past. 

You know your place in our family. You help, you contribute and you lead when you need to. You're honest and take in everything we teach you, like not to hide secrets from each other. So you felt you had to tell your dad we were going Pokemon hunting when I told you we were going to sneak out to do it. I'm already so proud of you cause you continue to blow me away with your thoughtfulness, your fearless nature, your maturity and your heart. 

Of course, you're still a five-year-old. You're at a stage where play always involves some form of pretend violence like fighting, pushing, and yelling. For you at this moment being number one is a priority so everything is a race or you have to be the first to do anything. 

I pray that God always watches over you and protect you especially in moments we’re not around. May you continue to thrive, be in perfect health and be that sweet child that you are. I don’t know how we got so lucky with you. 

We love you so much.

7 Jul 2016

Review of Marina Bay Sands Hotel - is it really worth it?

One does not travel to Singapore and not visit the famous Marina Bay Sands Hotel. Hopefully one gets to stay there to experience the hotel, in particular, the infinity pool as this is the only way you will get to swim in it, or even get close to the pool unless you're a staying guest. This actually works in favour of guests as there are so many people visiting the famous hotel. There are bars and a few restaurants at the top, as well as an observatory deck all open to the general public.

21 Jun 2016

Gen-Y Mum Update

I mentioned previously there have been some shifts in my world lately. Ok that statement sounds so grand. I think as we get older and we form regular routines any small change are big shifts to our world, and that's what I really mean. 

Firstly, I've been suffering from something I've been try so hard to hide ... psoriasis. I've been dealing with really itchy skin for a long period of time now. It's gotten to the point where it is every where and I was so uncomfortable in my own skin. I remember getting ready for a kids party I had was taking the boys to and looking at myself in the mirror, seeing the scars and I almost didn't want to leave the house. It definitely affected my confidence not wanting to interact with people. I'm finally getting treatment which is slowly repairing the damage it has done. It's still early days of treatment to try and control this condition. Adult psoriasis is hardly spoken about. I spent so many hours researching into what I had, "home treatments" to manage it and understanding what could be causing it. The worrying probably didn't help my condition either. 

We've been thinking about what we're going to do about our permanent living arrangement. I've mentioned previously our current home was always purchased under the assumption it was going to be an investment, but life doesn't always plan out exactly as you imagine it to be. So we've been talking amongst ourselves, talking to our broker, talking to agents, talking to parents, talking to our family and weighing out options. We've got some big decisions to make. 

The business has shifted ... actually, it's become more precise in its direction. I've decided to focus on particular industries which at the time I thought may be limiting but so far has worked out for the best. It kind of felt like I was starting again initially but because I'm clearer in who I want to target the work has come easier. The business has also put me in situations to things I didn't foresee I would experience, or maybe I was just too wide eye optimistic about everything at the start. Several months on I've felt the hurt and disappointment of losses, rejections, and betrayal. 

CrossFit keeps me sane and I've started playing basketball again. It's been 3 years since I've played and I can really feel the difference as I've aged. I'm trying to ignore thoughts of high expectations on myself and to just enjoy playing again. 

And lastly the boys ... well that's a separate post. They've changed so much since my last detailed post about them. Their characters and personalities are becoming more evident and individual. They crack me up, they make me so mad at times and they test every skill I possess as a human, but I'm so grateful I get to share this season of their life with them.

Enough about me, so how are you? How's things? What has been keeping you preoccupied lately? 

Linking up with Jess
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