Archives for posts with tag: parenting

This is our latest gig – I ask everyone (including myself) to bring one new vocabulary (one we don’t know before) to dinner on “Meaningful Monday” or “Wordy Wednesday.” We have been doing this for several weeks now. I realized my vocabulary is so poor. At least now, we all learn at least 4 new words a week. I also decided to pick up a book and started to read, as I know this is the only way to learn new words. IMG_0725


Ah Lo wakes up the tiger in me. People often asked me if I am a tiger mom, and some even told me I am one before I can answer. With Dai Bee, I don’t have to be one. He works independently, and I am very hands off. I support him whatever he needs, and that’s about it.

With Ah Lo, the tiger can no longer rest still. I need to be fully awake to check homework, meet with teachers, help study for tests, monitor his progress, remind him to practice piano (and to sit in just to make sure he does the required time). Above everything else, dealing with the pre-teen attitude. I don’t necessary believe the tiger parenting. It works for some kids only, not Ah Lo. Nevertheless, he needs a lot reminders, discipline and lots of reasoning and explanation. I want to be a doting nurturing parent and hate to be that person who constantly nags and wears a frown. Knowing him, I have to play both roles. Ever since he was a toddler, Ah Lo likes to test his limits. He can be the most lovable kid but can be one of those who will blow off the roof for no reason.

Lately, I’ve been stashing a lot of patience in my bag because Ah Lo has been draining it pretty quickly these days. I tried my best to stay calm though I can feel the blood boiling inside of me. I already foresee the battle ahead of me, and am not looking forward to it. This is the only beginning…

Without his older brother by his side, Ah Lo has been taking the bus by himself this summer. He takes the bus to my sister’s in the morning (to get a ride to school), and then bus home himself after school. I know many of his friends at his age are still being chauffeured around. With the child spending so much time in the car, under constant adult supervision, not so sure if it is the right way to go. Having him on the bus seems like a win-win to me (more exercise for him and less chaperoning for us).

Though I still get nervous when I don’t get the phone call from him at a certain time, but being able to ride a bus independently is a great accomplishment! So proud of him!

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When your boys have too much energy and they have a few minutes before their next activity, you need to give them “work.”  All of a sudden the house is calmer and I have my sanity back to continue with dinner. img_5685

As immigrants who later became US citizens, my parents (who spoke minimal English), never voted. They believed their votes didn’t count, so they never bothered. Growing up, voting was something other people did, just not us. We just didn’t care and I never saw the importance of it…until 2008, yes, very late in my “voting” life.

It’s cliche to say “it’s a different world now.” Well it is, almost every night during dinner my boys and l analyzed the local issues on the ballot, we learned more about the election process and of course we discussed the presidential candidates.

Tonight and in past elections, I took them to the polling place so they are very much aware of what the election is about and how important it is. It is a privilege, and not to be taken for granted. No matter how rich or how poor you are, no matter how old or how young (at voting age), everyone gets ONE vote. I explained to them many people had fought hard for us to so that our voices can be heard heard. So yes, this is a different and better world.

p.s. Thank you to all the volunteers at the polling place all over for your hard work and dedication.

May the best woman win!


Today, my co-worker and I had a long talk about letting go. She has a teenager now, and with just one, it’s extremely for her to let go. She’s going through an emotional roller coaster ride with her moody teenager. Her daughter was all she has, and she finds it extremely difficult to see the big change, in personality and life style.

At that point, I realized as a parent, raising children requires us to constantly letting go. I think I (as a parent) should be used to it by now. Don’t you think? From the moment a parent breastfeed her child to giving him solid food a year later, from driving them to places to having them take public transportation, or from making their meals to having them doing it on their own, it’s all part of the letting go process. As my boys get older, each step they take towards adulthood makes a little bit harder for me to hold on to them. Though each milestone is a celebration, the “firsts” are always bittersweet. In some way, that’s the irony about being a parent – how I always want to train our kids to become independent, yet we still want to slow down the time, so we can always hold them like a baby once again.

Boys have been coming home hungry, yes, they are growing. They have been digging through the pantry for snacks after camps. Instead of loading up the pantry with chips and cookies, today, I designated a snacks drawer in the refrigerator just for them. I filled it with fruits, baby carrots and cheese. Every week, I will replenish it with energy-boosting food to give them more healthier options.


The Girl moved back with her mom this week. In a blink of an eye, 3 years flew by just like that. In the last 3 years, she taught me how to be socially savvy – through SnapChat, Instragram, Vine, and what the latest social media tool out there. She understood sometimes the destination is not as important as the journey. “Live a little,” she would always remind me. She criticized on my fashion sense and helped me to be a little bit more stylish (that didn’t go very far). We discussed world issues and talked about personal matters. During our heated arguments or deep conversations, she preached to me what the new normal is, though I may not agree with it. The house got a bit quieter without her around.

Having the two girls in the last three years was a good learning experience for me (just relieved that I don’t have any daughters…hahaha). Hope they will bring with them all the good laughs and remember all my boring lectures. Though the Girl is not physically living with me, I told her I will still be on her back, checking up on her every now and then, just like she never left.


My MIL recently fractured the humerus bone on her left shoulder. We are constantly in and out of the house. I would make dinner and bring it over there, if not having dinner at their place. Since we have MLK off, Mr. Piggy is taking her to another doctor’s appointment. She needs a lot of help getting ready.

As a parent, you know you are doing something right when you see this:


No activities planned for today, so decided to lay low in the house. By that, I have mentally prepared a long list of things to do. In the morning, we did our routine Sunday writing and/or finishing up homework. The boys had so much energy this morning, I asked them to clean up their room, which they did a fine job. After lunch break, Mr. Piggy conducted a ‘how to clean bathroom’ workshop. The work was divided up by three parts – sink/counter (for the girl), shower (Dai Bee) and toilet (Ah Lo). Mr. Piggy gave them pointers and showed them how it’s done. We dropped off the cleaning supplies and off they went. Ah Lo finished first, and now has a newfound respect for clean toilets. While waiting for Dai Bee to finish up, he was willing to vacuum the living room. If this hasn’t tired you yet, in between all these chores, the boys did the laundry together and Dai Bee washed the dishes from last night. This is what I called a productive day.