3 ODD THINGS TO THRIVE MOTHERHOOD

Do you find motherhood challenging? Do you feel inadequate for the role? Are you scared? Are feeling frustrated? How much sleep do you get this week? How many coffee do you finish a day?
and the list goes on…

Growing up I always want to be a mother. I love kids, and they love me. Not until I had my first child; not knowing what actual motherhood was like, and being afraid to talk about it with anyone. Everything started to change – one by one, little by little, day by day. How life changing and how emotionally complex a time it is for women – the powerful change of identity new mothers go through, the isolation of post-partum depression, and the on-going attachment. But it is still by far the greatest accomplishment I have ever achieved in my life. *pat on the back*

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We all know being a mother is never an easy job. Unlike 9 – 5 regular job, it requires all of your time, mind, energy, soul – ALL OF YOU. You can’t leave when you don’t feel like doing it. Everyday is a battle between mind and soul. Some peer pressures may add the nerves within you.

When all those things collide, I learnt quickly that in order for me to survive motherhood is by doing it my way.

And some of the ways are not ordinary to most ears. It might SHOCK most of the new mothers or soon to be a mother. So, are you ready?? These are my 3 ODD THINGS ON HOW TO SURVIVE MOTHERHOOD

YOU DON’T ALWAYS NEED AN ANSWER TO ALL YOUR QUESTIONS

Human brains, especially mom brains, in general don’t like dealing with ambiguity. We want to (believe that we) make decisions based on knowing all the facts.

Why does my 24 months old baby has suffer from sleep regression? When can you start introducing sugars to a child? What is the best gap between your first and second child? How can I remain calm when my toddler’s screaming and slamming her head on the wall during the groceries? Should I give my kid iPad and video games?

Unfortunately, this motherhood journey comes with no manual book, no contract, no insurance. There is no right or wrong, black or white. Every curiosity, every perplexity, every anxiety, every scarcity – these feelings are valid but not definite. There’s always a pro and contra to your questions. And that is okay. These should not affect your decision making process. Because remember you are doing motherhood for yourself and your children, NOT for other monsters.

So, calm down…stop putting all the pressures on yourself – to get everything fixed on the tip of your finger. Your brain may filled with 963,815 questions a day, your heart may rushed to 225 km/hr but you gotta accept the fact that some questions may not be answered instantly TODAY. But, ONE DAY you will get there. ONDE DAY you will understand why does thing happen accordingly in the past. Even when you find NO answer to your ambiguity, my one piece of advice, never give up on this hood called motherhood.

You are never alone on this journey, you are not the only clueless person on this crazy road. Ask around, speak up, and stay positive. You don’t need to figure out these puzzles alone today.

ONE PLUS ONE DOES NOT NECESSARILY TWO

What does motherhood to do with this complicated mathematical riddle. THAT’S IT! It is complicated. What I mean by this is not everyone will understand and accept this fact. SO, bear with it!! 1 + 1 = 3 ; this statement bothers most of mathematicians, it intrigued them to proof that it is true. However, to most of us – common people, we don’t really care on this debate.

And this is exactly what I feel about modern motherhood. Not everybody could understand the physical and mental struggles a mother has to face everyday. I am talking about SAHM, working moms, mom of one or twins, single moms. WE ARE ALL MOTHERS. We are all putting the same effort to raise our kids. We are all moving towards one purpose. But sadly, nowadays, the society often times try to part us into different segments. Then, the next day we wake up in mothers rivalry. Who are doing better and who are working harder?

To me, no matter what! All mothers are a super woman (full stop). They are the first one to wake up in the morning – the last one to to lay her head on bed. They gave up their body, they gave up their sleeps, they gave up their freedom, they gave up their space, they gave up their moments, they gave up their life for just one breath. They are the most selfish person on this entire world. AND I RESPECT ALL OF YOU. YOU ARE MY HERO.

That is why this topic annoys me a lot. And I feel that I had to speak up for myself. This is me explaining 1 + 1 = 3 is possibly true. The society has their own perception on motherhood. So do us, we have our own voice about motherhood. Do not let it break us, instead let the similarity unite us. So next time, when the society says you should not go back to work until at least your baby 12 months old OR they might question the things you are doing with your kids at home today, look at them in the eyes and share your voice confidently.

This journey is not meant for the weak. This gig is designed for those who are committed. This road is build for those who are willing to go extra miles, those who are open-minded, those who are extraordinaire, those who are brave enough to take the risk.

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REMEMBER THIS

Bottom line: Motherhood is not for anyone. And you are blessed to be one of its special breed.

BREAK THE RULES

YES! You hear this. BREAK THE RULES> rules are there in the first place to be broken, right? jkjkjk

With the firstborn I used to do everything textbook / Google accordingly. Unfortunately, with the second one, I have got very minimal time to follow step 1 to 10. Many times I skipped the step 1 to 6, jumped onto 7 straight away. Or otherwise, I would find Jared with another lollies in his mouth or bubbles on his throat.

Thus, I quickly learnt in order to survive motherhood, I gotta learn how to break the rules. The rules of breast feed vs bottle feed. The rules of co-sleep or crib sleep. The rules of BLW vs spoon feeding. The rules of spanking vs time out.

At this time round, I choose to do whatever works best for the me and my kids at the time. I know I used to be strict with routines. But, let’s be honest, routines are draining. For those who are having zero support system other than your husband in the house, living with routines and kids are hard work. I used up all my energy in yelling and chasing my toddlers rather than enjoying the magical moments we may create in between.

So quick updates on my life lately:

  • I don’t only breast feed. I combine breast feed and bottle feed Asher (depends on the circumstances). Mostly when I’m home during day time I breast feed him exclusively. And he’s happy to take either breast and bottle. So, I am happy too.
  • I stop sterilise bottles and other baby utensils – just because it takes forever to me to get ready. Boiling water is the way I roll these days.
  • I do half co-sleep with Asher just because I have already set up a cot for him inside the boys room and our bed is not spacious enough to fit another human on it. (We definitely need an upgrade to super King size). So, first half of the night, Asher will spend his sleep on his cot on the boys room, when he wakes up for night feeding, I will take him with me till the morning.
  • I slap and yell at Jared. But I don’t prefer to make that as my first response towards his daily misbehaviour. I ask him for time out at the first place then if he did the same mistake for the second time round, I have to give him a punishment as the consequence of his action. Then, I do reconciliation every night before bed with him then we pray together.

My advice to all mothers of one, two, three or many more. Your intuition is your best weapon. Follow them and wear them with pride.

Never ever feel sorry for breaking the rules, instead feel sorry for yourself for breaking down your mental health by following the rules.

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Mama your way is the only way you do motherhood. 
There is no hood like motherhood. Wishing you all the best and luck in thriving this gig. X

 

Love,

Kenny

SMART CLEAN HOME WITH DYSON PURE COOL

Are you looking for a new way to automate your home and improve your quality of life?

Living in an apartment with 2 kids under 5 years old, and busy professions as well as ministry, requires us to be smarter in managing the house. It’s honestly hard to keep on track with the house chores and cleaning schedule, not to mention the thick dust behind the TV cabinet and window crease, which often increase the chance of my rhinitis. That is why, as a family are always on the run to find new ways to simplify and to improve our quality of life at the same time. One of them is by automating our home.

For this matter I trust Dyson for its innovative game-changing idea for the future. I heard countless reviews on some of their home appliances products, and now I get to try it myself. Yes!! Few months ago, I was invited to try their latest range – Dyson Pure Cool Tower Fan. And man…I have been using it for the past weeks and honestly I am quite impressed.

Not just another purifiers

As it names – Dyson Pure Cool Tower Fan. It is a purifier (duhhhh..) ; it removes contaminants and allergens for a cleaner environment. However, it is not just another purifiers, this appliance removes potentially toxic fumes and odours too and it also cools in summer. How cool is that?! This means we have found our long-lost house keeper for all year round.

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Automatically monitors, reacts, and purifies

What’s more, the Purifier automatically monitors, reacts and purifies – then reports to your Dyson Link app so you’re kept in the loop. Woot woot!! This is seriously one of the best innovation I love about Dyson. It automates my house and it tells me the level of air quality inside the house daily. Dyson Link App could easily download via  App store or Google Play Store. Then follow the instructions to set up your machine. Once you finished with the machine set up, you will be able to see the summary of your house air quality information on the homepage. Tap on the chart to see the daily or weekly report.

IMG_5528Dyson Pure Cool equips with an advanced sensory technology. I did some fun play with this appliance few weeks ago, I sprayed some perfumes near the meter, and guess what?? The air quality level meter turned red which was an indication of low air quality level. Then, I placed the purifier onto a mouldy room, and found that the level of air quality gave me a red signal too.

Last step, let the Dyson Pure Cool do its job, to purifies/eliminates the toxic mists, fumes and odours. Check out other cool features on your app, such as, timer, night mode, oscillation, air-flow, etc.

Quick and easy filter changing

It is as easy as setting up the machine itself. It is low maintenance. It took me less than 5 minutes to assemble everything. Place the two filters around the base and lock it in place. This filter can last up to 12 months depends on the frequency of use with built-in notifications when they require replacing.

A modern kids friendly home appliances 

The first time I noticed once I finished assembling this fan was its sleek and minimalist look. It blends with my white wall and seated steady and well on the floor just like a bigger version of a sound speaker. Dyson Pure Cool is blade-less; it has no spinning blades and it is safe near children. This fact put me at ease when I leave the boys hang around it.

The only possible way to keep a free pollutant/allergen house 

Since having children, I realised how important it is to keep the cleanliness of the house. Children are very sensitive to the changes in the air quality. They are more susceptible to the viruses and bacteria in the house than adults are. It is my nightmare to have a suffering kids from any viruses or bacterias.

And I admit no matter how well I clean my house, I can’t do a better job than a HEPA filter to get rid of the 99.97% of the particles 0.3 microns in diameter. I want our nose, eyes, and lungs to get a break from pollutant and allergens at least when we are at home.

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Ever since I got Dyson Pure Cool at home, my hay fever attacks lessened. Asher is sleeping well and longer during night time as well as Jared. Last but not least, all of us are more comfortable playing on the carpet floor without following sneezes.

So, if you’re thinking to keep the house fresh and healthy in order to increase your family quality of life, choose the smart way, air purifier is worth your attention. I would recommend Dyson Pure Cool to automate your home. And feel the difference.

 

Love,

Kenny

 

 

 

#FASHIONFRIDAY – STROLL STRIPES

Hello another weekend!

Glad that we could have spend time together as a family of four. Our family quality time is pretty simple; strolling around the city, cafe hopping, playground and capturing moments.

And guess where we visited today?! Yes! Another day in Surry Hills. It is indeed one stylish neighbourhood next to the city which filled with many cafe scene. This was the place destination when we were dating till today, we take the kids with us like a joey in our pouch.

The kids enjoy the stroll as much as we do, while sipping his  version of coffee called babycino, then we stopped by here and there to take some pictures. And how I loved seeing how the photos turned out at the end of the day; many raw moments which we will treasure in few years to come.

OH LETS PUT A PRESSURE POINT to the outfit theme of the day; STRIPES STRIPES STRIPES…

Don’t they look cute together? Horizontal lines will give wider illusion to your body, an in contrast, vertical lines will give thinner illusion to your body. Let’s see. I don’t really believe in it, I still look wide in these photo though. T T What should I do >>> ? aghhh…Nevermind let’s not focus on my flaws. Let’s take a look at the star of the day/ the over – achiever. My forever firstborn, Jared. He’s clearly looking cute with this edgy look.

Oh and tomorrow we’re going to celebrate Jared’s 4th birthday! DINO RAWR!! gonna get back to blowing some balloons. So see you next week! X


Jared: Biker’s hat, Denim jacket & Stripes turtle neck (Cotton On Kids), “Play Hard” Legging (Minimacko), Stripes socks (Uniqlo), Shoes (Vans)
Kenny: Outerwear (H&M), Stripes White Pants (Shein), Sunglasses (ASOS), Shoes (Alexander Mcqueen)
Andri: Beanie (Carhartt), Stripe Shirt (GAP), Pants (Zara), Bomber Jacket (H&M)
Asher: Bonnet (Hazel Village), Stripes tee (Cotton On kids), Stripes Navy Overall (Miann & Co), Tights (Ollies & Place)

 

Love,

Kenny

#FASHIONFRIDAY : BLEU BLUE

These shots was taken last Sunday, straight after church. Because that is the only day when the whole family dress up well for the occasion. Oh yeah…we’re meeting Jesus, we’d better put our best attire on, right?!

It was raining that day, so we chose to wear something waterproof. Daddy and Mommy were up for some navy trench raincoat while Jared was looking cool with his feather printed blue jacket.

We had such an early departure from home, church was fun and amazing, then the kids were over-tired; they had some nap in the car while us, the parents had to eat some Chinese take away lunch in the car. You gotta do what you have to do, they said.

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We stopped by at the Hunters Hill skate park on the way home, and let Jared play his scooter there. 30 minutes later, he refused to go home. 45 minutes later, he started to negotiate with us. 60 minutes late, he accepted our bribe; McDonald’s run it was. Happy Meal to keep the kid happy.

Went straight back home and took some quick indoor casual family photos utilising the minimal lights inside our unit. NOW, ALL EYES ON US.

Last but not least enjoy some #thecuttingroomfloor from last week shooting – and let me introduce you to Jared; the over-achiever, cause there’s always one in the family, right?! Happy weekend guys! Enjoy your time with some lovelies. X

both are leaning on mommy; the "big" tower


// Kenny: Trench Coat (Sportscraft) , High Neck White Tee (SHEIN), Navy buttoned shirt (Zara), Denim Skirt (@bevnoir), Suede high knee boots (Zara) //
// Andri: Trench Coat (Topman), Navy sweat (Marcs), White tee & Black Jeans (H&M), Shoes (Vans) // 
// Jared: Feather Printed Bomber Jacket, White Sweater (Huxbaby), Black Pants (Uniqlo), Shoes (Vans) //
// Asher: Overall (Cotton On Kids), Bomber Jacket (Zara Kids), Beanie (Toshi), Socks (Jamie Kay) //

 

Love,

Kenny

#FASHIONFRIDAY – AUTUMN FEELS

black and leather are very versatile for any seasons. It goes well with any denim and colours. It is a MUST ITEM in everyone’s wardrobe, including the kids’.


Hello Friday! It’s been a while I am putting my passion for fashion aside. Until last week, when I was cleaning up my IPhone storage, I found some great lookbook photos of me with the family. Somehow, it sparked the fire back to start The Tjungsquad fashion section. So, let’s level up the fun by starting a new official hashtag of my fashion section #fashionfriday – I will try my best to update this section once a week, yes new fashion inspiration will up live on Friday.

Today, let’s talk about autumn. Yeah I see it’s June already which means winter is no longer near, instead, IT IS HERE! But, how can you deny the beauty of autumn?! I can not. It is surely my favourite season. And still in the autumn feels and my favourite colour mode; Yellow and orange.

These photos were taken 2 weeks ago during our family day out. And our first time out & about photoshoot with Asher. I didn’t planned in the first place to take some family fashion shots, but just realised we were wearing colour – coordinated outfit that day except Asher when I run through the photos. So, here are some inspiration for you and your family; black and leather are very versatile for any seasons. It goes well with any denim and colours. It is a MUST ITEM in everyone’s wardrobe, including the kids’. Photos were taken at Centennial Parklands.

Hope you enjoy this section as much as I do. X

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And some #thecuttingroomfloor especially for YOU to enjoy! Because taking photos with kids are full hard work. And just to give you an idea that those perfect pictures are definitely one of many. We treasure them, we don’t take them for granted. ><

the annoyedmamafind the ducklingsJ: when smile is too basic. it is for the amateurK: what?! are you calling my name?frustrated whatever face


// Kenny: black denim jacket (Cotton On), Blue Stripe Skirt (Sussan), Shoes (Nike) //
// Andri: Black leather jacket (Calvin Klein), Black tee (H&M), Shoes (Adidas Ultra Boost) //
// Jared: leather jacket (Eve Jnr), Khaki tee (RXR), Pants (Cotton On Kids), Shoes (Vans) //

 

Love,

Kenny

OUR STORY – LAST BUMPDATE BABY #2

Hey humpday!

I am still here in front of my laptop and sipping my second cup of raspberry leaf tea of the day, hoping that it will help the natural inducing process. However, bub has another say, he enjoys being inside mum’s tummy a lil longer. WELL, SO BE IT!! I believe he will come out at the right time when he is ready.

So, let’s move on… today I am going to share my latest bumpdate at #39 weeks and 3 days.


SYMPTOMS

First thing first, let’s celebrate that my baby is officially considered full term! Yeah we made it! We gotta celebrate every small wins in life, aren’t we?

Bub is as big as watermelon. Weight around 3.2 kgs according to the pregnancy application I have been using this time round.

As my bump grows each inch, so does my level of discomfort. Often times, people misrecognized that I’m carrying twins. And no offense, I am totally fine with the statement. I would be more than happy to carry twin girls in the future. Ha. I cannot stand more than 10 minutes. I cannot sit more than 10 minutes. I cannot lie down more than 10 minutes. Every move seems like a dead-end at this point. I have to keep changing positions in order to avoid backache.

I feel a lot lighten at this stage, because the baby has dropped and settled deeper into my pelvis (not fully; getting there). I can breathe more easily than before. Because pressure on my diaphragm has been relieved. As pay-back though, I feel more pressure on my bladder, which means more trip to the bathroom. Especially during night time. However, I read once on the internet this week, way to reduce night trips to the bathroom is by avoiding to take sip of liquid right before you go to bed. And it worked!! So, please keep this in mind all expectant mama.

Stronger and more frequent Braxton hicks contractions, which is commonly known as “false” or “practice” contractions. Braxton Hicks are a tightening in your abdomen that comes and goes. They are contractions of your uterus in preparation for giving birth. For a first time mama, you may or may not notice these events. However, if you do so, don’t get panic. Stay calm, the baby may not come out anytime soon. It could be days or weeks away.

While some women experience insomnia during their third tri-semester. That has never been my case, I am blessed with the ability to sleep anytime anywhere I feel like doing so.

My physical body is getting moody. I would feel very sick some days and very energetic on the other days.

Last but not least, I am on nesting mode most of the days with loaded snacks near me. Don’t judge please.

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Clothing

Honestly, this is not my favourite topic to share with. I am comfortably living in my maternity bra, and pyjamas all day at home. When I go out, I prefer to wear one-piece dress than two pieces (maternity legging or jeans and oversized tops). I move more freely with a dress than two-pieces. I have less than 10 options for my daily go-to outfit (mostly dresses). They are from ASOS and H&M. They are made of good fabric and fit me perfectly. For more safety and support for your growing bump, get a maternity shapewear under your dress. It will help you hold the weight of your bump.


Nursery

Latest update on this matter; I decided to go with modern Nordic style, majorly playing with monochrome color; black, white, and grey.

And accidentally, I bought many bear wall and room decorations for baby #2 for no reason, other than I found them cute and trendy. Some are hanged on the wall and styled already, some are still sitting on the box. So, by saying that, I would say the nursery isn’t 100% done; more than halfway done I supposed. And honestly, it doesn’t bother me at all, since we decided to let baby #2 to sleep on bassinet next to our bed for the first few months of adjustment before we transfer him to his own room for a sleep training.

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Alright…that’s all for today! I just finished my last sip of tea and I guess I’m feeling it. Yesssss the early contractions. Is it gonna be my last bumpdate for sure?! Ha. Wish us luck. X

 

 

Love,

Kenny

EASY RECIPE // LEFT OVER FAVOURITE

Hey SMONDAY!

SMONDAY – “The moment when Sunday stops feeling like a Sunday and the anxiety of Monday kicks in.”

I am currently on my last lap of my pregnancy and I feel like the day’s long and the night’s short. I fell asleep at 3PM, wide awake at 3AM. Dear anyone…. help me.

oh lord

I have been caving inside the house and do a lot of chores and cleaning for the pre-arrival of the baby. The other thing I enjoy doing these days is baking. I and Jared spent most of our day time in the kitchen together to bake some goodies. Using some left overs on the fridge. Because, really….around these times, I have little energy to do big groceries and cook big meal. SO….WHY NOT occupied those left overs aye. Today I’ll be sharing 2 of our favourites left over recipes in the house. It is full packed of goodness and nutrients. Even though, it’s majorly made out of left over. Ha.

Most importantly, it is SO easy to cook. Throw them into the oven and voila. You have it!!


LEFT OVER ROASTED CHICKEN VEGGIES FRITTATA

Served: 4 – 6 pax // Cooking time: 35-40 minutes

1 cup of leftover roasted chicken (shredded)

1 tbsp frozen carrot

1 tbsp frozen peas

1 tbsp frozen corn

1 small onion, peeled and finely diced

4 cups of grated cheese

4 eggs

olive oil

salt & pepper

How to:

  1. Preheat oven to 160C.
  2. Heat up a pan with olive oil, mix onion, left-over shredded roasted chicken, and frozen veggies on to the pan. Stir fry them for further 5-7 minutes or until veggies soften, Salt & pepper to taste.
  3. Transfer them to an oven proof muffin tray.
  4. Sprinkle grated cheese over the mixture.
  5. Whisk eggs in a separate bowl and poor them evenly over the mixture.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, or until cooked through.

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MOMMY’S BANANA BREAD

Served: 4 – 6 pax // Cooking time: 50 – 60 minutes

150 gr softened butter

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 very ripe bananas, peeled and mashed

2 cup self raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ cup milk

½ icing sugar

honey

How to:

  1. Preheat oven tp 180C.
  2. Grease and line 11x21cm loaf tin.
  3. Using an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until pale.
  4. Add egg in 2 batches, beating well after each batch.
  5. Stir in banana. Sift flour and baking powder over banana mixture.
  6. Add milk, stir with a wooden spoon until combined.
  7. Spoon mixture into loaf tin and smooth the surface.
  8. Bake for 40-45 minutes. Cool in pan before serving.
  9. Serve with icing sugar and honey drizzles.

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Well, here’s the thing that I do enjoy doing during my last trisemester with my son. And looking at both of my boys were taking each bite with a big smile really made my heart burst. These simple things are the things that are matter the most to me. I count twice for this kind of view and moment. I am grateful for my humble little family.

What are you thankful for this Monday? Feel free to share some on the comments below. Or if you have some yummy left-over recipes, I would like to know them as well below. I created this blog as a platform for us, moms, women, to encourage, empower, and support one another. So….looking forward for more connections in the making. X

 

Love,

Kenny