Happiness is... looking forward to new beginnings

Posted by ~Summer~ on January 01, 2017
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It's the last day of 2016.

Yes, I feel a little disbelief even as I type that. Though I always feel like the years zoom by, this was one particular year that seemed to pass so fast and I haven't had time to even sit down to think about what actually happened in the past 364 days.

I don't deny it, it's been hard trying to juggle both blogging and looking after three kids. Actually, it's impossible on most days and as much as I have the heart and will to write, I just don't have the luxury of time or energy. So do pardon me and stick around if you've been a faithful reader because I do have a lot of things that I wanna share with you. Just like I said I would at the start of the year, I've been taking it slower but one thing is for sure - I still wanna be a mum blogger. Come 2017, I hope to roll into action once again and I can't even wait to start writing all about our new home!

The big girl has done well in Primary 1, not just in terms of academics but also how she has adapted to the new environment, made friends and started to enjoy each day of school. That is a huge relief for me and though I initially planned to switch school for her because of the move, I think fate has decided we will stay for now and she will commute by school bus. All I hope for is that she can continue to find delight in going to school and always see the joy in learning and being with friends.

As for the little girl, she is going to switch school to one nearer to our new home and it's going to be a time of uncertainty again but seeing how cool she has been about it and never once did she complain about the change, I foresee that she is going to settle down well. One thing though, due to the full house in the mornings, she is going for the afternoon session (lasts 3.5hrs) and will be skipping afternoon naps so we gotta adjust our timings accordingly very soon! Wish me luck!

For the boy who just turned one, I am still amazed by how quickly he has grown from the time I laid my eyes on him and can only be thankful that he is growing up well. Sure, we've had two bouts of pneumonia, battled measles and other illnesses like cough and fever. I can keep asking if there was anything I didn't do properly as a mum and keep feeling the unbearable guilt, but I can also move on and learn my lesson from these ordeals and try harder to provide him with a safe and healthy environment to grow. I still think things happen for a reason and the consolation is we've emerged stronger as a family from these experiences.

As for me, I'm currently working day and night on my big project now and that is the home renovation. Yup. You can say I'm the supervisor, interior designer, contractor, receiver, point of contact for every single thing that happens in the house. Boy oh boy, it's definitely been a hectic period but I'm also feeling a sense of satisfaction as the house slowly takes shape. I'm so grateful that the kids have been my angels throughout this period because they willingly tag along with me to and fro and I can only usually keep them in a bedroom. With no TV, no phones, no tablets. Yet they have listened to me, entertained each other and also helped me as much as they could. Awww. I can't wait to share more on each renovation project with you and I hope some of you will be excited to read about it too!

So, in this last post of "Happiness is..." for the year, here's a roundup of what we did in December. Updated at 1 Jan 2017 3am - There's some breaking news on an incident that just happened and it's pretty dismaying for me to end off the year this way. Still, I can only hope that 2017 will be a better year for all of us and may the kids always be safe and healthy. More updates below.

We've been visiting places like IKEA and Courts to shop for stuff for the new house and the kids are always with us. Sometimes we drop the elder two at Småland, sometimes we try to close one eye when they squabble, sometimes we just have to deal with meltdowns even though all the hubby and I want is to settle our needs for the house. Oh well. All parents need to be able to multi-task, right?

Packing has been progressing slowly and the baby's hospitalisation also inevitably caused everything to be delayed. By hook or by crook, we'll get there! Gosh, I still can't believe the amount of stuff we have and I still don't know where or how we're going to keep everything because there is no storeroom in the new house. Haha. Oh well, one step at a time!

You know what I am glad for when I see the kids caring, feeding, eating, loving and looking out for each other? I feel relieved that they have each other. Yup, despite the fact that they get into fights, pull hair or shove each other at times, the truth remains that they are close siblings who will grow up to protect and support each other for the rest of their lives. Thank you dearies for putting up with a busy mama who has so little time for you these few weeks and for being such understanding and helpful kids. Everything will get better once we settle down, I promise!

This year was the first time we participated in the Boys' Brigade Share-a-Gift project and we were just glad that our family had a chance to contribute to the society. We delivered hampers to the needy elderly and it was such a blessing to be able to spread some love and joy.

We also managed to watch Charlotte's Web at SRT and the kids thoroughly enjoyed it. It was the last time Ariel would get to go on an excursion with her classmates in this school and I hope this outing left behind some precious memories for her.

Talking about shows, yes we are still finding time to watch movies at the cinema. This month, we watched Moana and Sing and the girls just keep singing those songs over and over again! I wish I had the chance to watch Underworld with the hubby and go on a romantic movie date, but I guess that will just have to wait for now.

Yes, the baby turned one in the blink of an eye and we had a most awesome family celebration for him at The M.A.D.Z. I hope everyone had a ball of a time! Will share more updates about the party in another post soon!

Coming to one of the highlights of the month, that would be how we spent Christmas 2016. It wasn't what I expected, but life never fails to go against our expectations, right? Yup, we spent Christmas in KKH because the baby was admitted due to pneumonia. It wasn't as bad as the last time but from experience, we really didn't want to delay things and decided to bring him in once his fever and cough persisted and he started to be irritable and lost all appetite.

However, he suffered aplenty this time round because of the IV cannulation. According to the doctors, his veins were so fine that they had trouble inserting the plug and the first time, he was tormented for half an hour, he screamed till his voice got hoarse, yet they failed to do it. All I could do was listen from behind closed door and paced up and down the corridor with my heart about to jump out of my chest.

As if it couldn't get worse, after a senior doctor did it successfully for him, the plug fell out the next day and we had to go through the screaming cycle all over again. This time round, the hubby took him but even when I was in the ward, I could hear my baby's cries loud and clear and it just stabbed me in the heart. Yup, it was bad. Plus, the doctors failed to cannulate him once again and they waited till he fell asleep at midnight before they came to take him away to do it for the 4th time. Gosh. He was left with quite a number of bruises on his hands and even legs because they tried to poke it there too. Poor baby, I hope this won't happen too often!

The good thing was we managed to get a single ward on the second day and the siblings could come over to camp out and accompany the poor little sick baby. They brought along toys, books and balloons but I think actually all he wanted was... them.

So on Christmas day, who came along but Santa himself! Yup yup, we decided to get the hubby to dress up as Santa and we bought some gifts to distribute to the other kids. It was a small act that brought about great joy and we even had kids queuing up outside our room just so they could receive a Christmas present. What we never did expect was that the family in the ward next door even went to buy a gift so that they could give it to us in return. How sweet, right?

Thanks to friends who really care, we received a bagful of thoughtful presents right after we got discharged and the kids were too happy. You know who you are and thanks to all of you for being there for me when I was feeling down.

So the little girl's birthday comes only two days after the baby boy and of course, we had to make her feel special! We went to her school to have a cake cutting ceremony with her teachers and friends and also let her give out some presents which we wrapped and decorated ourselves.

We asked her where she wanted to go on her birthday and her reply was "I wanna go Night Safari!". So, after having the celebration in school, we went to have lunch and played at the arcade, then we watched a movie, next we took them for art class, and finally we made our way to the Night Safari! Right, and we are officially Friends of Wildlife so you bet we will be visiting the zoos and parks even more often next year! Happy birthday, Ariel!

With me trying to look after the sick baby and keep him away from crowded places, it was a good opportunity for the girls to bond with Daddy. I was proud and amazed that he managed to bring them to explore some new places and that he actually survived being out with two on his own! Kudos, dear! So, first they went to the Air Force Museum, which I've not been to, and took some pretty awesome-looking pictures there with the aircraft exhibitions.

Then, they also went on a daughters-daddy night out to Universal Studios for the RSN Family Day 2016. Yup, I wished I could have joined them but we reckoned it wasn't wise to bring along the baby who had just gotten discharged a day ago, so never mind, there's always next year! A big thanks to the families who helped to look after the girls or grown ups who accompanied the big girl for rides (it's never easy to work with odd numbers and kids who are not too tall yet), they had so much fun and stayed till the park closed at 1am (exclusive for the RSN families). Woohoo!

So the hubby just got a new phone and I have to say I'm loving these pictures he took of the kids and the Christmas lighting at Universal Studios. The girls just looked so happy too! (I wonder if they had missed me at all?)

Breaking news - The little girl fell and busted her chin an hour before the stroke of midnight and we did our New Year countdown as a family of five in KKH. Yup, we ended the year with blood, tears, guilt, horrible feelings as parents and six stitches on the girl. *Sob* So they tell me accidents do happen and there is nothing you can do to prevent it when it is fated to be, I still feel terrible because I saw her fall in front of me in our bedroom and I can't help but think that I failed to protect her. Sigh. I'm so, so sorry, my baby girl.

The bad news is this will leave behind a scar on her chin and in my heart forever. The good news is she was as cool as a cucumber and stopped crying shortly even though the blood kept flowing for a long time. We had to wait for over 1.5 hours at the hospital but she didn't whine or grumble a single bit. Unlike in Sweden where we could stay right beside our child, we were ushered out of the room this time and I couldn't be by my girl's side no matter how badly I wanted to. I was crying when I looked at the closed door and was relieved that the big girl was there to hold my hand and keep me strong. I felt, and still feel, like the worst mum ever to let my kid endure this. Thankfully. the doctor said that Ariel was a darling and never once did she move or fidget during the whole procedure. I am hoping your wound will heal well, my dear. May this incident bring us closer, make us stronger and let us grow wiser.

What a ride 2016 has been and as we move forth into a brand new year, I hope this year will be filled with blessings, good health and joy for all of us and for all of you too. Happy New Year!


  1. Oh no Ariel! I hope you get well soon!! Auntie Adora sayang sayang ok?

    Summer, please don't feel bad. There was nothing you could have done to prevent it. Scars will fade, don't worry! Since she did not complain much, I'm sure that's indicative of her strong character, and a scar on her chin is likely to not bother her at all!!

  2. I heard about mom's feeling when something has happened to her kid. Hope you are feeling good, Ariel. I'd like to use this story to include to my essay, I'm searching for service to assist me at http://askpetersen.com/essay-writing-services-reviews/ right now. It's a perfect website to choose your best.


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