being a mom

a mom’s survival guide

We usually don’t take both Daniel and Mariam out if it’s just the two of us handling them. It’s always either one (usually Daniel since Mariam is still small), and both if we’re out with our families so there’s a lot of uncles and aunties who can help. But today, Dean and I felt adventurous so we brought both kids out for breakfast.

Start: “Oooohhh we’re going to have so much fun!!” “Yeah, Mommy! I like this, Mommy!” “Brffpttttttt!” “Weeeeeeee the whole family is out together!”

Finish: I was feeling so annoyed at the hot sun, we had to go to the car to put a diaper on the potty-trained Daniel, Mariam was restless and has cried her tears all over my dUCk scarf, Dean and I had to pack our food because we could not even finish it.

I love my children so so much but these are the downsides of bringing them out. I’m just being realistic here, as usual I like to tell it like it is:

Daniel: he is extremely clingy so he refuses to walk and always wants to be carried. So with my handbag, my paperbags of whatever I bought and a 2 year old child, I wonder why I don’t have three hands. He’s also potty trained now so he’ll say “Mommy, Daniel want toilet” and we’ll have to zoom to the nearest toilet. Sometimes he says it a little too frequently just to joke with us because zooming to the toilet and chanting “Dontpeeyetdontpeeyetdontpeeyet” together is just so amusing to him. Once, we ignored his request because we were so sure he was just joking and we ended up wiping the floor of one of the most expensive fine dining restaurants in KL. Only going back there after plastic surgery. So, yes, never take your children’s toilet requests lightly; a lesson for Dean and I.

Mariam: at 6 months, she’s at that very curious stage. Wants to touch everything and puts everything in her mouth. And when you don’t allow it, she’ll cry. LOUD. This was one of my frustrating periods with Daniel too, so I’m back here again with Mariam. They are no longer newborns who lie still angelically, nor are they toddlers who are independent enough to walk. They need to be carried at all times, and sometimes you will question if it’s ok to let your child crawl on the floor (I mean, they vacuum the mall everyday right? I’M KIDDIN!)

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For me also, I feel pressured because I get recognised here and there. And just yesterday, I heard a group of girls whispering “That’s Vivy,” and I had stains all over my scarf from Mariam’s tears and Daniel’s snot. And a lady came up to me showing me my Instagram page and asked “Is this you?” before taking a picture with me, while I was holding a crying Mariam. I feel like I need to look my best all the time when I go out, and it’s doubly hard with two kids around AND the hot weather that leaves me sweating buckets. It’s too easy for moms to just say Screw this, I’m going to wear palazzos and a big shirt and a “tudung bibik”, with no make up on. I don’t blame them and I understand why they’d want to, but PLEASE DON’T LET THAT HAPPEN.

Just because you’re a mom, it doesn’t mean you should lose yourself and your appearance. Yes, it’s hard with the kids pulling your scarf in all directions, and your beautiful clothes get stained. But you have a duty to your husband to look good for him, and more importantly, you have a duty to yourself to look the best you can be with whatever God has given you. It doesn’t matter if you’re a public figure or not, but as women, we should always encourage each other to take care of ourselves and our appearances.

I’m struggling but I find these helpful:

Carseats – plonk the kids there and let them cry if they want to. It’s for their own safety and it leaves your clothes crease-free.

Re-iron and re-apply – when I drop my kids off, I take off my clothes and re-iron them since they would most probably be creased on the way. Have a mini steamer in the office. And go to the toilet to re-apply your most probably melted makeup.

Wake up early – well, earlier than the rest basically. This allows you time to shower and wear your make-up. When the kids are up, settle them first, and then only you wear your clothes right before you all leave the house.

Pick out your clothes the night before – once the chaos in the morning starts, you can’t even think clearly on what to wear for yourself. Hence the ugly shirts and big pants. So pick out your clothes the night before after the kids are asleep, in peace.

 Bra straps – that’s where you should be pinning your scarf. I’ve been asked so many times to do a scarf tutorial but I can’t because it’ll be me in a bra in front of the camera haha. But yes, basically I pin both ends of my dUCk onto my bra strap so you can pull and yank as hard as you want, but it will never come off. Try it!

Instant hijabs – I’m not a fan personally because I like the freedom to style and wrap my dUCks, but I can’t deny the convenience and time saved. So if this is your style, go for it!

Personal grooming – is a must. Shave/wax whatever needs to be off, and nails must be short or manicured at all times. No black stuff at the corners of your nails please, gross.

Sling bags – or basically bags with long straps. Yes, totes and those cute structured bags are nice, but keep them for date nights. When with kids, you’ll want as many arms free as possible.

Dry food only – nothing soupy please. Even if you crave it, imagine yourself covered in spilled soup that you have to wipe. Order dry dishes for yourself; fried rice, chicken chop, sandwiches.

Snacks – bring biscuits and snacks for your kids to chomp on. One biscuit can probably keep them busy for a few minutes. And whatever ok, every minute you can distract them counts.

Sunglasses – the best way to fake fabulosity. Buy five of them!

Hope this will help! If all else fails, JUST STAY HOME. Your kids can watch the outside world from YouTube. Haha.

And for the record, to whoever has three of more kids and still remain fabulous, I SALUTE YOU, YOU ALIEN YOU.

being a mom love

mariam’s first swim

Today was a complete family day for Dean and I.

We did NO WORK, like seriously NO WORK it felt a bit weird. But since we are obsessed with work during weekdays, we thought it’s time to focus on kids kids kids this whole weekend. No laptops, no friends, just the four of us. Today we took both Daniel and Mariam out for some lunch and shopping (for umm Playdoh, yawn). Then we came back and took them swimming; Mariam’s first time.

She totally screamed when I dipped in the water. But after a while, she seemed to love it. Well, she’s pretty expressionless like how Daniel was back then too. No laugh, no nothing. Just calm and cool, while her mom goes “This is so fun, wheeeeee!! ARE YOU LOVING THIS, MARIAM?” followed by a blank face from Mariam.

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I miss blogging about simple life things like these like how I used to back then before work started. With Instagram now, it’s so much easier to update on my everyday life there and I think there’s so much more content there than my blog. But I never want to lose my blog because I really want my kids to be able to read the stories of them growing up (and I guess stories of Mommy growing up too). You guys should pen down your growing family’s journey too, it’s pretty nice to look back and read things that you probably have forgotten.

Hope you are having a good weekend!

everyday things lifestyle living in KL

apartment floors

When my dad buys property, he’ll always go straight to the higher floors. I watched him do this and it obviously works as investments, but I never really got it growing up because I thought Hmmm you’ll be waiting the longest for and whilst in the lift… But that was the reality; the higher the floor, the more expensive. And a lot of people care about the views they get; the view of our KL towers, even a little point at the top covered by trees, demands a premium price.

Dean and I got married in 2012 and we rented the ground floor of an apartment. Start small, we thought, this is nice. Same sentiment from the rats in the surrounding “garden view” we had. You guys remember my rats story right? *shudder* Moved out immediately. Now we are renting on a slightly higher floor in an apartment in the city. Still far from the top floor, but it’s okay, we can just frame up a picture of the KL towers on our window and pretend that’s our premium view. One day, maybe, we can afford the top floor rates.

Tonight, my whole perspective has changed.

So I came home, carrying my some plastic bags on one arm, and the other arm carrying a heavy Daniel. He fell asleep in the car, so there he was, drooling on my left shoulder. The right shoulder was occupied by the handle of my handbag, also heavy with contents like baby wipes and stupid coins (and why the heck do I need two giant phones, I was questioning my intelligence just now).

I walked (fumbled) into the lobby and was about to press the Up button for the lift when I realised all of the lift doors were open. I looked at the guard, and he lazily replied, “Lift spoiled,” in that same familiar insincere tone he’d say “Good night,” every night.


He pointed to the staircase door.

I pointed to the Up button again. Repeatedly. Desperately.


But fast forward, I found myself climbing up the stairs to my apartment floor. Annoyed, of course. Arms about to fall off, taking breaks in between… I mean seriously after G it should just be 1. WHAT THE HELL IS MEZZANINE FLOOR. THAT’S JUST MORE STAIRS FOR ME.

By the 3rd floor, I was sweating, panting, basically in no condition I’d like the public to see. This one Korean guy sprinted past me and I thought he was the biggest show off ever. I know you probably love walking and all, I see you around in your sportswear but now is not the time, dude. Now is the time for you to offer to carry my bags for me. Or carry me.

After what seemed like a year, I finally arrived on my floor. Never been so happy to see my apartment door.

So yes, tonight is the night the 1st floor people laugh at the penthouse brats upstairs who never smile. I’m about to go to bed now, but they probably haven’t reached their floor yet. Teehee.

being a mom

mariam eating solids

On eating solids for the first time:

Daniel’s time: Book said baby can start eating real food at 6 months. Dean and I were so excited we went shopping for organic vegetables at 5 months. Took picture of every step of the way. Wanted to make something fancier for him but book said one food at a time, don’t mix food together since their stomach isn’t used to food yet. So avocado only. Sent pictures to everyone we know.

Mariam’s time: It’s almost 7 months. Dean and I are busy with attention-demanding Daniel that we have said things like “Mariam doesn’t look that hungry yet” and “We’ll feed her next week.” Poor Mariam having such lazy parents and a diva brother.

My future consecutive babies: Will probably get fed solids when they ask for it. “Mommy, can I please have some mashed spinach, all the other kids at school are asking why I only drink milk.” I would hate to be my future consecutive babies.

This bad parenting has got to stop haha. So today, Dean and I started Mariam on solids and felt so proud! Bought some organic carrots and steamed them with potatoes (totally ignoring the book, what does it know anyway..).

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She loved it!

Gotta think of a menu for her everyday now. This eating solids thing is a lifetime commitment, once you start you can’t go back. Hehehe. Tomorrow is Broccoli Day for Mariam. I’m going to make this baby love vegetables! #pleasedontbelikemommy

being a mrs love

before we sleep

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Watch by Malaya Co. from FashionValet

Dean and I are coming to our 9-year anniversary of…ugh… I find the phrase “falling in love” so tacky, but yes, that. I can’t tell you how much I love and respect this man of mine, and it’s really crazy how the feeling grows even more as days pass by. People ask me how I work with my husband, come home with him, sleep with him, wake up with him, go to work with him, weekends with him, weekdays with him.. hehe. I tell them it’s not enough!

This relationship of ours is still a mystery to me. How God can put so much love between two people who see each other all the time and not get sick of each other, I pray that dynamic will never stop. I really think it comes from genuine respect. Dean has never uttered a bad word to me, has never called me bad names, has never wished anything bad upon me, and has never swore in front of me. And vice versa. Yes, he scolds me if I do something wrong, but even his scolding is done with a lot of respect and reasoning. Respect is key, I think, in keeping the love alive. If you lose respect, the love fades pretty quickly and it will be hard to undo that.

Anyway, recently our work has divided us a bit. As FashionValet expands quickly and there are so many areas and divisions to look after, Dean has been working double as hard and I hardly see him during the day. 3 years back, we’d go to meetings together, but now we pretty much have to divide to conquer. As cheesy as it sounds, this makes me miss him during the day. The driver would send me home earlier than Dean because I need to put on Mom cap, so I look forward to when Dean comes through the house doors. Daniel and I would race to the door to see who gets to Daddy first. Mariam probably crawled 3 steps from her original position, she isn’t too excited about Daddy’s homecoming.

So since I don’t know much about his day, we have this new thing we came up with. I’m sharing because I imagine most of you work separately, so things like this might be good to keep each other in the loop without sharing too much about work. It’s not about work, just about your day.

Before we sleep, we have to share one thing we are unhappy about, and three things that we are happy about. Could be anything! Work was stressful, lunch was really good, happy you bought a new pen haha, anything! And of course, the positives have to outweigh the negatives, so three good vs one bad. Pretty soon, you will start to pick up the little happy things in your daily life and realise that the bads are never that bad.

 The only downside to this new thing is that both of you are usually sleepy by this time, so if one of you is chatty (i.e. me) it’s most likely the other one is no longer listening.

Our convos go like this:

Dean: I’m unhappy about..hmmm… x. I’m happy that…y. I’m also happy that… z. Then my last happy thing is… a.

Me: Ok my turn. I’m unhappy about this bla bla. You know, because today I went here and… bla bla bla… So you can see why I’m unhappy right? I just don’t understand why bla bla bla and he/she said bla bla bla. Why do you think it happened that way bla bla bla….

Dean: Mmmm…

Me:  Wait are you listening? I haven’t even told you my three Happys. Are you… are you asleep? Because if you’re asleep, you are going on my Unhappy for tomorrow night.

being a mom being a mrs love loved ones

my beautiful morning

It’s been a crazy week and I haven’t had time to blog at all. So many little things happened in the household (laundry is not one of them!) and I realise it takes like two hours to get everyone ready to go out. Haha. Kak Siti, please come back so I can have my social life back!

One highlight was Dean and I spying on Daniel and Mariam playing with each other and Daniel giving Mariam one of his animals “Here you go, Mariam,” and then taking it back after a few seconds, “No, cannot Mariam, no.” Fickle.

Oh! And Mariam has learned how to pull herself up now. I had to discover it the heart-almost-dropped-to-ground way when I came out of the shower and she was standing in her cot smiling at me. I was so scared she would topple over and fall to the floor. Never taking my eyes off this little lady.

Another highlight was this very sweet romantic gesture of Dean’s where he spontaneously took us to sleep in one of my favourite hotels in town. Of course we made full use of the bathtub and room service, and I woke up to one of the most beautiful mornings in my life.


Sigh, what have I done to deserve such happiness in my life?

being a mom being a mrs everyday things

housewife for the week

The 4 words you never want your maid/nanny to say.

“Saya mau balik cuti.”


“Oh, bisa, bisa….” you will have to say when they tell you a family member is sick. I mean, what kind of human would you be if you didn’t allow them to go back for a while. This maid is I feel a bit more trustworthy than my previous one (remember the one who I lent my suitcase to?), but we shall see if she comes back in a week’s time.

So I’ve been taking care of the kids full-time, working from home. (There is no such thing btw, for mothers. “Working from home” is a lie we all tell our bosses.) I am not very used to staying home the whole day, but that’s what I did on Monday! I was admittedly a little bored (conversations about giraffes and elephants all day guys…), but having said that, I never had a free moment; there was always something to do, some drool to wipe, some food to make, some toys to keep. And seriously, I spent so much time with the kids that now they are so clingy to me. I walk in the room and they run/crawl to me. I feel so needed I love it! I mean, Kakak got competition when she comes back, mannnn.

Dean came back at midnight last night after a meeting and found me on the bed, clutching my phone in case he called. Not kidding, arms and legs were spread open, I was face down. When he came in, the only word that came out of me was “Massaaageeeeee.”

And so my loving and understanding husband, did just that.

“How was your day, baby?” he asked innocently.

I was soooooo tired I could only mumble, “Housewives… deserve….. all….. good…. things….”

What I meant was “Do you freaking know how much stuff a housewife without a maid has to do? She ain’t no tai-tai, she is legit busy busier than any working woman. It is never about her, always about someone else or an area in the house she has to scrub, like seriously why do we need so many walls in the house. And how many times do you all need to change clothes in a day, isn’t one outfit good enough to last you through the day, why are people so selfish? Also you can’t tell me you want to eat 10 minutes before you want to eat, do you know what defrosting is, it takes at least a couple of hours. Is that my baby crying, I just put her to sleep like 10 seconds ago, that is some kind of a power nap. Oh great, now my first child wants me to feed his toy giraffe, like I don’t have loads of laundry to do. Haven’t showered, haven’t eaten, haven’t seen the outside world, don’t know where my phone is, couldn’t get any office work done, and you ask me, “How was your day, baby?” How can you be so rude?”

Fuhhhh, housewives, you guys are the real deal.

Pat yourself on the back.

And then please tell me, what number do you call to sort all this out?