Friday, June 02, 2017

My almost half year reflection

Time only gets faster and faster as we get older and older. It's the same for this year. Before I knew what happened, June is here and almost half a year is upon us. Let's have a review on what had happened in this year so far.

1. Greatest event of the year - birth of my son

My son continues to be the source of sleeplessness, frustration, joy and happiness for me. Life is a lot different compared to a few months back when me and my wife are still living as a couple. Now with the '3rd party', we effectively reduced our weekly trips out tremendously. It's a quick sneak out to get groceries, or to have a bit of dim sum, but that's pretty much it. It's baby - work - baby - sleep cycle for me. I'm not complaining, nor am I missing the life as a couple without kids, but I'm just noting down the differences.

2. Reading goal of 52 books a year - way off track

Can't do that. I realised in the first month of my son's birth that I can't hit my reading target. With a baby, everything comes to a standstill when he cries. I'm in my 11th book now, and it'll be a cause for celebration if I can hit 15 books in this year. But so be it. I'm changing my reading habit and reading deeper now (actually, I'm studying books now), so I welcome the change. I'm letting go of this target for now.

3. Savings 50k per year - on track

I'm working a little lesser this year because I need some time off for my family. It's the 5th month into the year and I've accumulated about $29k in savings, so I'm sure I can hit my target savings of 50k per year. This is a good achievement for me, because I know my spending had increased in some areas. As a result of lifestyle changes, some other areas had reduced spending as well. I'll give a few examples below:

My water & electrical bills shot up by 30% to $160 per month. Likely because of the overnight air-conditioning since the baby sleeps better. Cooking more often at home now too, so these two reasons are main cause of the increased bill size. Should see more increase in the latter half of the year as the unit charge of water and electricity goes up.

My restaurant bills went down from 66+%, from about $300 a month to about $100 or even lesser. That is because the frequency of restaurants trip decreases tremendously. I'm eating more at home as my mum came over to help us cook for meals. Hence the groceries bills also went up from $300 to about $800 per month, more than doubled.

I also bought quite a lot of stuff from qoo10 until I'm now a GOLD member. Bought stuff from Lazada and redmart too. Usually these are baby stuff but there are also home improvements things that need replacement due to wear and tear. Crazy year this is.

4. Relationship with mum - from average to strong

My mum is a great help. Besides bringing an experienced hand to help us and guide us in taking care of my son, she also cooks for me and my wife. Home cooked food is the best, seriously. I think my health went up a few notches after eating a few months of home cooked food. I also see how my mum handles the baby gently and never lost her patience. It must have been like that when I'm a baby in her arms too. I think the cycle has gone one full round. It's important to forgive whatever wrongs your parents had done to you (or not done for you) because we're all struggling as parents to give and love our kids the best we can do. I think because of the constant interaction with my mum, all of us, including my wife, had a stronger relationship with each other. That is the best side effect that happened when my son arrived.

5. Health goals - non-existent

No exercise, no pull ups, no jogging. Nothing. To be honest, even if I can muster the time, I might not have the energy to do so. Constant lack of sleep makes it hard to commit to anything. I think this situation will improve as the baby grows older and more independent, but as of this year, I doubt I can do anything about it. Not now. The only healthy thing is a diet based kind of system, not the exercising kind. Also stopped intermittent fasting because I keep getting hungry. Probably is the lack of sleep that causes the body to scream for more calories.

6. Starting Journalling - beginning of a new habit

I've been journalling these days. This meant that I write short notes on whatever happened to my mind along the day. I've purchased a google app for this purpose. I think it serves two purposes - first it helps me in my mind training to not judge anything and write down anything that crosses my mind stream. Secondly, it serves as a diary of sorts and helps me to colour my life. If I don't jot down the things that happened, I think each day will pass by even faster. I want to note down all the little things that happened in my daily lives so that I can look back a year later and see what happened. That should be interesting.

Such a drastic change to my lifestyle. Is it worth it? Yes, it's still a resounding yes.


Singapore Man of Leisure said...


I just had a naughty thought...

What if she surprised you that she has another one on the way?

Talk about back to back happiness!!!


la papillion said...


Haha, it would never be a surprise surprise..if it is, it'll be a planned surprise LOL

SM said...

Thank you for your interesting post! I enjoyed reading it. Coincidentally, I am also planning do a mid year reflection of sorts. I am also planning to write down my thoughts more often too -may I know what's the name of the Google app u purchased, and if u are happy with it?

Anonymous said...

You will soon run out of space to accommodate your son and his ever increasing things- from clothes to toys to (later) books, study table, cupboard etc. Can you still use a room for your business?

la papillion said...

Hi SM,

Oh, I bought the Journey ( It really need not have to be this one, but I've used it for a while and like the layout and all that. Free is fine too but I thought I'll support them a bit by giving them my money, haha :) So far so good, very happy with the app.

Would love it if you can share your mid year reflection with us :)

la papillion said...

Hi anonymous,

Yeah, his things get more and more and is piling up. But as parents, I think we're quite slack in buying him things. Most are hand me downs, but still, it still piles up. I must resolve to clear some of the things that he can't use anymore.

I still have a spare room that I have not used at home. It's meant to be his room but is now currently a storeroom. There is a metal shelving that takes up like 10% of the room space, but I think it can be cleared up to free up the entire room.

My work room is definitely fixed...need that to earn income.

SM said...

Thanks for replying! Very kind of you to share your knowledge and support the app! Would be great to compare notes with like-minded individuals like your good self. Take care.

Rolf Suey said...

Hi LP,

It's a blessing and the talk about the how many books or $ we saved or earn from stocks sometimes are great, but really quite difficult to compare of raising a family.

And not just having children but to manage them well as they grow up, and teaching them and at the same time still earning enough to feed the family is not as easy we wrote.

Sometimes you have to wonder all the gurus / idols of the world like Steve Jobs, Warren Buffett, Elon Musk and many other celebrities etc are not really that successful in managing their family lives.

Then you start thinking about it? And why are many striving to emulate them in their work success?

la papillion said...

Hi Rolf,

While having a family with kids is great for us, we must not forget that we shouldn't impose our values onto others. There are many ways to live in this world and there's no model of the best way to live. It's not up to us to judge others, esp on the yardstick that we choose. I think each of us have a way to contribute to the betterment of the world, and it's our unique ways to enrich the world that makes life interesting.

Don't you think? :)

Rolf Suey said...

Hi LP,

We were cyber-friends for quite awhile already. I believed via our many mutual comments, we always show mutual respects over the years, and in fact I treat you as a great cyber-friend to have online.

You know I always speak my mind, and will never afraid to confront the truth. So same this time. Hope you forgive me if I say anything too direct. Hehe... :-)

Regarding your comment, of all the logic of this world, we may think it is imposing values or judging, but it is not.

It is just facts.

Whenever human beings wanted to be inclined to think they are right, they often turned to philosophical arguments, but it is often facts which it is simple and more obvious.

The truth is often difficult to accept and are distorted in today's society as the world evolved in an age which I think it is not the most pleasant.

It is a fact that Warren Buffet regretted about his wife Susan as mentioned in his biography. It is a fact that Steve Jobs openly mentioned about him neglected about his family life. It is a fact that Elon Musk had several divorces and hence may not be successful in his relationships' management. I did read their biographies and not commenting base on own thinking.

So why did we call it judging when it is merely stating the facts.

And it is also a fact that managing and raising a family is difficult. So why are we think that by saying that, we are imposing values or judging?

As the world evolved. human minds were indoctrinated by the pattern of this world to chase for the things which we were made to chase. For the true purpose of lives were often veiled until the day we realized. And before we realized, our human minds always like to think philosophical which overly complicated a simple fact.

You stated:
"There are many ways to live in this world and there's no model of the best way to live"

You may think I am absurd, but I 100% disagree with the above statement. In truth, in faith and in love and with all humility, I do believe there is seriously a model of the best way to live.

Hahaha... it is hard to explain, but if you experienced the miracles and supernatural things I experienced daily/weekly, perhaps then you will believe.

For now, I hope that after this comment, we still have good cyber-friendship. Enjoyed your blessed family life and may the truth and facts set this world free. :-)

Sillyinvestor said...

Hi LP;

Baby is defintely a game changer. Btw, u still have pupils coming to your place for tuition?? What if the baby cries? Hahaha talking about exercising goals? When I when on course, I wanted to run at least twice a week for 4 months, I ran 5 times only. Lol

Conincidently, I want to blog about my half year, there is plenty of changes this eyear too.

Enjoy. This get much easier when child turns 2. Some even earlier

la papillion said...

Hi Rolf,

Thanks for explaining. Don't worry, I'm not so small-gas haha! I accept your way of life but there are things that I disagree upon, but it's alright - we're all different so it's not surprising we have different views too.

Still haven't convert cyber friendship to real life friendship haha! One day

la papillion said...

Hi SI,

Ya, they are still coming over to my place haha :) If the baby cries, then if people are busy doing their chores, then I'll come out loh. It's better this way, so babies are not isolated from the place of work of their parents. Some students also ask me why the baby is so quiet and ask me to go check out! No issues so far :)

Please do write about your half year review, will be interested to read it :) Looking forward to the terrible two period lol

brattz said...

Hello LP! :D

For exercise, carry baby and go for 1-2 hr walks after dinners with wifey! :D :D
it's healthy, fun and nice bonding for the little family!

go for no.2 baby quick! :D :D don't lose momentum!!

Enjoy!! :D :D

la papillion said...

Hi brattz,

Haha, that sounds like a good idea :)

Wah, baby no 2? I think need a gap of at least 1 yr haha

Kappo said...



la papillion said...

Hi Kappo,

Wah, long time no see :) thanks!