Category Archives: Family

The immigrant housewife speaks

When people back home call me a tai-tai, I always scoff and say I’m a pseudo tai-tai or a glorified housewife more than anything. After all when you have half your face buried while scrubbing the toilet bowl, furiously rubbing soap scum of the bathroom tiles or mopping and sweeping my life away, thats hardly the life of a tai-tai. But then after a while, I take a stab back and realize that its just my negative thoughts speaking.

I do live in one of the most eclectic places in the world and I got a pretty shiny apartment. My apartment has a glorious view of the Hudson river and I get to stay at home while the rest of the world slaves away and I get to have ‘tai-tai’ lunches with my fellow housewives and I get to buy whatever I need without worrying about the cost too much. I guess what I’m trying to say is, I need to look and focus more on the positive aspects of my life. I may not have everything perfect all the time but I have everything (and a lot of extras) that I need to make me happy right here and now. And its the here and now that matters.

Sometimes I get a little down because I focus on my supposed career regression, my seemingly blind quest towards finding my purpose in life, difficulty of adjusting to American culture and coping with being so far away from my family and friends. All these negative emotions make me lose sight of why I’m here in the first place.

I’m here because I met a man that I’m willing to trade all the things I have in Singapore for. He treats me very well and I know that he’ll love me for all of our collective lives together but more importantly, I left Singapore with the thirst of wanting to find out whats out there and to fulfill my dream of wanting to live overseas. Except that I’ve always thought that I was going to live overseas for a few years and not leave indefinitely. But who knows what’s going to happen in future, maybe we’ll have enough to straddle two homes in opposite ends of the globe!

I left Singapore wanting to explore the rest of the world, to venture out of my comfort zone, to acquire new adventures! but yet sometimes I let homesickness and fear of change eat into my soul. But you know what, I’m not going to beat myself over that. Its normal for people to fear change and its normal for people to resist change. Instead of worrying about my imperfections of adjusting, I’m going to applaud myself for taking a bold step towards building a better life for the both of us. Its normal to feel homesick and its normal to fear change. I must remember that different is not always bad, different lends an opportunity for one to contemplate about what was and why the present is such.

Moving on….

After a few months of marriage, the exhilaration of new love and the palpitation and excitement of the nuptials has worn away. Instead it’s being eroded with the quiet comfort of knowing there’s someone at home waiting for you; the definitive comfort of knowing that when you have a bad day there will always be someone at home waiting to give you a big bear hug; best of all you know that no matter what happens, no matter what silly arguments you might have had, you take comfort in the fact that he/she will always be walking beside you for the rest of eternity.

 

 

 

 

Project Grateful 365 (Day 184, 185, 186) – Beluga Love

(Day 184) I HEART BELUGAS!!!!

I love love BELUGAS! They are like underwater teddy bears. All cute and soft and squishy!!!!!!! I was really chuffed to be able to go to the Georgia Aquarium to see my favourite whale! Belugas are usually cottony white and super friendly! They are commonly found in the arctic and sometimes subarctic regions. They also have 50% body fat, so they are quite the little chubbers!

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(Day 186) Grateful for being a ‘follow-bot’

I got to follow Kris to his business trip and I remember thinking before (way backkkkkkkk when I was younger, how good housewives/tai-tai’s get it!) I got to wallow in the nice comfy hotel bed, not have to clean/dust/cook or do any form of housework, besides packing for the trip and unpacking for the trip, watch some TV as a special treat and explore a new city. Its like a trip on my own but with company in the evenings and hugs to sleep. How awesome is that??

 

(Day 187) Grateful for being happy with simple things! 

Today I cleaned everything! I even washed the floor rugs and all!, went for a nice walk, played with little Charlie bear, made dinner, bought some groceries, signed up to be a team leader for New York Cares and even managed a combo blog entry! I feel accomplished! Best part? Its only 7pm! The night is still young!!!!

I like busy/relaxed days. Meaning I did a lot but didn’t feel rushed! Everything was done at my leisure and I have a nice time doing everything! So today I’m grateful for being happy when doing chores and living a simple life! Somedays I get annoyed being a housewife but today I treasure being one! So I must remember to be grateful for that!

 

 

 

Project Grateful 365 (Day 178) Walking tours!

June 10th, 2013

On weekends that we’re not doing a road trip, not gawking at protests or not travelling somewhere or eating at some yummy establishments. The husband and I will choose a random area to go on a ‘walking tour!’

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(Fuel before our 8.36mile walk!)

 

Along with my cooking and cleaning duties, I’m also the chief fun officer. I plan recreational activities and things to do during weekends and weeknights. So today  I randomly planned a walk around the residential neighborhood of Astoria. The prices in Manhattan and Brooklyn are rising so quickly that many people find themselves moving towards Astoria for cheaper rents. There are mostly low rise buildings and residential homes, and some nice restaurants littered along broadway and 30th ave. Either than a good, long healthy walk there was nothing really at Astoria so we’ll probably not go back ever.

We walked quite a bit before taking the train back to Union Square and witnessed chants of ‘Hey Hey Ho Ho, Erdogan has gotta go!’ I sometimes wonder tho, beyond just an ability to voice your opinions how will protests like this, affect anything that is going on in Turkey? Nonetheless, a voice in better than no voice.

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We wanted to go buy some fresh produce at the green market but unfortunately they were closing up before we had a chance. They are usually also pretty expensive I think, Wholefood prices. (Speaking of whole foods, I bought a peach for 1.80usd the other day #whysoexpensive????)

There was also a street market near University place but those ‘Pasar Malams’ usually just sell overpriced food and I don’t think they are all that fantastic. I’ve been to quite a few now and haven’t found myself being vowed by anything. They always smell fantabulous tho!

 

From Union Square we walked home, not before stopping for dinner and some scented candles. For some reason yankee candles are 12.99 per bottle now, why are they so expensive????? Bed Bath and Beyond is even worse, 20 bucks for a bottle of candle. You gotta be kidding me! Which is sad because I really love their Mahogany Teak! I’ll buy them when they are on sale 2 bottles for 22.50 before tax, which is still pretty expensive if you think about it. Non brand name candles can sometimes go for 4bucks on sale, so there’s your comparison!

The husband was craving Indian so we had Indian for dinner! Malai Marke at the east village. Very yums, 4.5 stars outta 5!

IMG_4368Lamb curry, Vegetable Curry, Naan and some complimentary papadum! Artery clogging but oh so good! 

 

Project Grateful 168: Happy 3months Darling!

Today marks our 3rd monthversary of marriage! Its ONLY 3 months you say, but one must remember to celebrate the little joys in life.

Everyday I feel more and more loved by Kris. He takes very good care of me and (he says) I do the same. YAY! He makes me very happy and we have settled into a nice little rhythm together. I am very grateful to be married to such a wonderful man.

I bought a slice of red velvet from the same bakery we had our wedding cake from. I think we will start a tradition!

*blows lots of kisses and love all around*

Family

My eldest sister had a small health scare on Mother’s Day and that got me a little worried for a while. Thankfully its nothing serious. Paupauroooos,  please take good care of yourself in Singapore. I worry for you sometimes. I hope this little incident has given you impetus to take better care of yourself.

Happy Mother’s Day Mum! I’m very far away but I thought of you lots on Mother’s Day. I hope you enjoyed the card and will buy something nice for yourself with the small AP! Or maybe you’ll just go ahead and buy fruits for little Isaiah instead!

My 2nd sister, which also acts like a mum to me. She often goes, skirt too short, don’t swim out too far, your curfew is 12am.  She’s my little mother goose. She told me that she misses me everyday and that made me tear a little. She also celebrated her first mother’s day with little Isaiah, which I’m sure was very very special to her.

I miss my family all 9000 miles away and I hope everyone can be happy and healthy!

On the bright side, 3 of them are coming next year and maybe more will come the year after!

I love to clean the house and do laundry whenever I’m homesick. I think its because its gives me a sense of structure and control. #wierdhabits

 

The Plight of the 21st Century

I’m not sure if I can be a housewife.

Actually I’m not sure if I can JUST be a housewife.

I oscillate from being at peace and serenity of being a glorified ‘tai-tai’ to an unsettling desire to want to achieve more in my life.

I mean I really like taking care of the house, making a hot meal at the end of the day for Kris, bringing lunch to his office like a cute lil delivery girl. I love the smile on his face and his happy little chubby cheeks when he tastes something that he likes. I cook 2/3 meals a day and the rest of the time, I get to read, go out, make friends, volunteer, travel, do whatever I want really!

2 generations ago, being a housewife was normal and dutiful fast forward to today; and being a housewife means

1) Your husband is rich (Not entirely true, wealth is relative especially when you’re living in NYC where all the super rich huddle together!)

2) You’re not contributing to society

3) You must be a silly housewife who knows nothing

4) Is that ALL you do?

5) The occasional look of envy (because they hate their jobs)

I feel a tinge of guilt for enjoying my housewife-hood. Very silly and unnecessary because it doesn’t matter what others think, it matters what I think and what my husband thinks.

To be really honest, its not what others think that matters. Its what I think that matters, if I feel that being a housewife is not enough for me. Then I just need to get into action when my employment pass arrives.

It would take a couple of months from now. Meanwhile I’m going to sit back, relax, do whatever I want, whenever I want and enjoy my life! I won’t lie, being a glorified housewife is SUPER BOOYA! 

Instead I should give thanks and thank all my lucky stars and the heavens and earth for giving me a year off to ENJOY MY LIFE!!!!!!