Thursday, August 12, 2010

Destressing Mommy!

This is a paid review blogpost.

Ever since moving out from the in-laws' house (since 4th April 2010) to live on our own, Mommy has to do almost everything -  household things especially - all by herself. And things can get pretty stressful when household things such as laundry (plus the ironing), cleaning, caring for the baby of the family, cooking (or even buying food), and even buying groceries (Papa tends to get impatient with Mommy's style of shopping, so Mommy prefers to shop alone or together with Juan Or only) plus the unpacking and storage of groceries, all has to be done about single-handedly almost all the time. Compounding to the stress level is the fact that Mommy is working full-time outside, so work stress (remember the MQA documentation thing that gave Mommy mental stress for 7 long months?) plus traffic-jam stress are factored in as well.

To offset the stress level a bit, these are the steps that Mommy took:
  • Wash clothes only twice in a week, usually on Thursdays and Sundays. For that matter, Papa and Mommy bought a big washing machine (10 kg load) to solve the problem.
  • Iron clothes only once a week, but that also is usually done by stealing some time here and there.
  • Stock up on perishable groceries on a weekly basis or fortnightly basis. If it is fortnight, Mommy made sure the vegetables are those kind that can stand a substantial storage duration with the use of special 'fresh bag' type of plastic bags.
  • Cook dinner only on weekends or public holidays or if Mommy is able to leave the workplace earlier than usual. Other than that, Mommy merely buy economy rice for dinner on those usual working days.
  • Cleaning the house only occasionally (*shy to say, but that's the truth!*), maybe something like once a month or when Mommy goes on medical leave.
  • Turning a blind eye to the mess created by Juan Or, i.e., the scattered toys found all over the floor, behind and under the bed or anywhere that looks like a gap) until the next house-cleaning session or until the next scolding of Juan Or.
And this is the timetable of Mommy for today (which happens to be a washing-clothes day) which Mommy finds stressful:
  • 4.10am - woke up from sleep; went downstairs to wash clothes
  • 4.20am - Juan Or woke up from sleep unexpectedly; called for Mommy when about to start washing clothes; Juan Or refused to go back to sleep and wanted to come downstairs with Mommy then requested to wash Thomas and Friends on Mommy's laptop
  • 4.30am - prepared Campbell mushroom soup for breakfast; Mommy started washing clothes (combination of hand and machine wash)
  • 5.10am - finished washing clothes; drank the mushroom soup and milk
  • 5.30am - prepared milk for Juan Or; supervised Juan Or in drinking milk because this boy has tendency to do 'funny things' when not being watched; Mommy accidentally dozed off while watching over Juan Or
  • 6.15am - decided to cook bamboo shoots (bought from Cameron Highlands) before further spoilage, certain ingredients were already prepared from last night
  • 6.45am - finished cooking, washed containers, basin, etc; aliquot some bamboo shoots to be given to babysitter, washed wok, clear and pack up rubbish (both dry and wet rubbish).
  • 7.05am - hanged clothes to dry
  • 7.30am - packed things and dressed up to go to work, then detected foul smell coming from Juan Or's buttock
  • 7.45am - cleaned up Juan Or and put on fresh diaper, packed things (and Juan Or) into the car, checked the house for switches, lights, windows, curtains and then locked the house
  • 8.15am - drove off from home; encountered traffic-jam
  • 8.55am - reached babysitter's house
  • 9.15am - reached workplace
  • 5.20pm - left workplace
  • 5.40pm - bought economy rice
  • 5.45pm - picked up Juan Or from babysitter's house
  • 7.00pm - reached home, 'entertained' Juan Or
  • 7.20pm - eat dinner, 'entertained' Juan Or
  • 8.30pm onwards - take bath, rest a bit while 'entertaining' Juan Or, ironed clothes, 'entertained' Juan Or while watching TV, 'entertained Juan Or again (and maybe dozed off somewhere in between), sleep (maybe at 12.30am or even 1.00am)
Next day wake up at 5.00 or 5.++ am and a similar routine starts all over again.

Because this kind of routine happens 5 days out of 7 days in a week and repeatedly week after week, Mommy is actually very tired - tired as in everyday lacking in sleep (even though Mommy has already taken steps to minimize housework). So perhaps one day Mommy must consider pampering herself with massage therapy to destress and rejuvenate. Mommy saw this website about Massage San Diego and Massage Hill Crest. These two massage centres are run by massage therapist, Eric Sjoberg, a Holistic Health Practitioner, who has been in this field since 1993. He is an expert in many modalities of massage such as deep tissue, circulatory and craniosacral. Now, how Mommy wish Eric Sjoberg runs his massage centre in Malaysia too! ^_^


ChloeRuoyi said...

You really wake up at 4am?? Your typical day sounds really hectic. I feel tired even reading it haha. Take it easy, ok. A too high level of stress can wreak havoc to your health.

P.S: Chloe was 2y3m when we went to CH.

smallkucing said...


As for dinner, have you tried home delivery option? Not as good as home cooked but at least better than the economy rice.

eugene said...

Hey Alice,

How come your most posts are paid review posts,,, fat tat loll

good for you

Sheoh Yan said...

Alice, I thought I am the only one lacking so much on weekdays. Mana tau, you worse than me. Wake up at 5pm or earlier. I wake up at 7am, the rest almost the same like you.

mNhL said... busy.....hope you do get a good rest during your off days.

Broccoli Ginger said...

U woke up at 4? Seeing your routine really makes me tired!!! Poor thing.
I guess you can throw everything into the washing machine. For extra care maybe you should buy the laundry bag. I used that and no problem.
what abt hiring someone to clean the house fortnightly? I doesn't cost much. In Penang, it's RM9 per hour.
For certain chores like hanging clothes maybe your hubby can help out? So you won't be too stressed.
Please get enough rest.

The Kam family said...

Wow! and you survive!

Getting a part time helper to come in to clean the house once a week or every fornightly helps a lot. And it's not costly. You can consider that.

How about throw in the clothes in the washing machine just before you leave the house, then only hang them when you are back from work? Then you can wake up later in the morning?

For the toys, you can buy those big containers and throw all the toys in at the end of the day, at least then there are not scattered around the house and looks neater, and the toys won't go missing.

You arrive work at 9+am and can knock off work at 5+pm, that's a very good working hours already!

Good luck!

Alice Phua said...

ChloeRuoyi, yes, I wake up at 4 or 4.30am only on the weekdays that I need to wash clothes. If not washing clothes, then it will be 5 or 5.30am (on weekdays).

Smallkucing, at one point, I did consider home delivery and enquired from colleagues who are already subscribing to such service. They said the rate is RM150 or RM160 per person per mth and that translates to RM6.82 to RM7.27 per person per working day. Finally I decided to ditch this idea becos I can get economy rice for about RM4 to RM4.50 person (has one meat and one vege dish plus rice).

Eugene, LOL, thanks! Actually most (99%) of my posts are still unpaid ones. It's just so happen the times when you come to visit my blog that I was given these paid review assignments - back-to-back some more! So far this is my 3rd paid review blogpost.

Sheoh Yan, the only day I get to wake up at 7am is on Saturdays. But there was only one Saturday where my workplace was holding convocation and I had some duty there, so I had to wake up latest by 5.30am, get ready, send Juan Or to babysitter and reach workplace by 7am!

mNhL, LOL, the only days that I really get a 'good' rest is when I'm on MC and Juan Or is at the babysitter's house! ^_^ Otherwise during off days, I still have to layan Juan Or and perhaps some housework here and there if we didn't go for jalan-jalan, but of course the day's activity won't be so hectic.

Broccoli Ginger, yes, I'm currently using the laundry bag for working clothes and another laundry bag for bras. What I meant by hand-washing is I need to scrub the vital areas for panties and briefs, hubby's T-shirts (the neck/collar and arm pit parts), the collar of my and his working shirts, plus his working socks. Other than that like my house clothes, I just throw into the machine, never bother to scrub at all (becos I know my dirt is not so stubborn......heheheh!). About getting hubby to hang the clothes, unfortunately by 5.30am (he's very scared of traffic-jam), he's already off to work! :(

Alice Phua said...

Mrs. Kam, about getting a part-time helper, can consider about it. In fact, my boss did suggest that too when we were chit-chatting. The only problem or adjustment I foresee is to make time to be at home to watch over the cleaner. I'm not at home on Saturdays as i'm teaching piano outside whereas Sundays is our outing day.

If the washing machine does the work while I'm off to work and then hang it only after I'm back from work, I wonder whether the clothes will have a smell or not since they are wet and kept in a closed space?

I did buy those big storage box and also used one extra unused laundry basket to throw his toys in. The toys in the big storage box are under control (so far so good!), but the toys in the laundry basket are not. Have scolded Juan Or before (many times in fact!) to clear his toys after playing, but he will only do it when I become super angry! This boy has the bad habit of throwing toys into narrow gaps like the gap between the bed and the wall, plus throwing toys under the bed and sofa.

About arriving at work at 9+am, that's the good thing about UCSI University. It gives flexi working hours to lecturers but we have to fulfill at least 25 hrs per week and our 'absence' from the official working hours has to be backed up by research acheivement. The management particularly mentioned that the 'absence' from official working hours are not for staff to go shopping or jaga anak or run personal errands, but as opportunities to upgrade themselves academically. I normally reach office by 7 something am, latest by 8 or 8+ am to avoid traffic-jam. It's just that particular day that I have no choice but to set off late from home. About leaving by 5+pm, actually there were many occasions when I have to leave at 6 or 6+pm becos there's really a lot of work (administrative + academic + blogging if there's still time) to finish. So all in all, after picking Juan Or up, buy dinner and braving thru traffic-jams, I only reach home by around 7.15pm to 8pm, depending on how bad is the traffic.

Alice Phua said...

THanks everyone for your moral suport! :-D

Alice Law said...

LOL... obviously you are 'One Leg Kick" supermom, you sound like Cinderella to me and your hubby...a hem, Lady Tremaine, cindy's stepmother, kiahahah!! I don't mind if he knows this, but he really 'bully' you which I fell it's unfair!>o<"

p/s: He should atleast help you to look after Juan Or when you were busy or doing simple tasks like cleaning the house or laundry!

Alice Phua said...

Alice Law, about he helping me to look after Juan Or when I'm busy, he did-lah, but sometimes when halfway thru, Juan Or's fretfulness became uncontrollable, I still have to stop whatever I'm doing and attend to him whereas the Papa will be fuming. SOmetimes in his fuming, end up both of us quarrel, then he will cabut upstairs angrily and leave everything behind. So in the end, I have to sambil look after Juan Or while doing housework! Other than this situation, he will leave everything for me to do. The only things he does around the house are taking out the rubbish for gabbage truck to collect (but that's only after I have already packed the rubbish!), wash my and his cars, cut grass and some maintainence job like fixing the light bulb, etc., opening/closing windows as and when necessary. Other than that, it's all on me!

cheeyee said...

Wah wake up so early! I used to do that before I have kids but now with 2 kids I no more such energy. Lol! Like you, kids and most house works are done by me. During weekdays, I just do minimum housework. No cooking too as I normally leave the office after 7pm. Kids will be too hungry if wait for me to cook dinner. I also do all laundry during weekend. Kids' clothes on Sat and hb and my clothes on Sun.

Alice Phua said...

CHeeyee, am starting to wonder when my energy will start to run long can I go on like this.