Saturday, November 30, 2013

Subaru XV


So as I told you guys, my car sponsorship with DUO Rewards is that I get to change my car once every 4 months!

The time has come to change my Sylphy into something else, and I actually felt quite sad!!

In the short four months that I drove her, she has become a huge part of my life... It's no wonder that people who drive hardly ever can bring themselves to go back to public transport.

Having your own vehicle, your own private space to travel that you don't have to share with strangers, having a powerful feeling of freedom that you can go anywhere you please... It's a seductive feeling indeed, even with a rental car!!

I've always told Mike that him picking me up to drive me home in Laopokasaurus (that's what we call Mike's car) and me taking a cab home by myself technically isn't much difference since I'm chauffeured in both cases.

But when I am on a cab I feel like I'm still on strange grounds, like I cannot completely unwind yet. I still feel kinda tense in case the cabbie kidnaps me. But the moment I go into Laopokasaurus, I feel like I'm in my second home. I can take off my shoes and put my feet up on the dashboard if I want!

So that feeling rather intensified with the Sylphy. She was my first car (kinda, even though I don't own her) and I've always felt like she's a little mobile home of mine. :') I always feel snug and safe and happy driving her.

That being said, I was still very excited to see what my next car was gonna be!!!



It's a Subaru XV!!!

Oops so I am blocking the car and you can't see how it looks like.


Ok this is better... One of my favourite things about the XV's sleek design is that the rims kinda look like flowers!!

Otherwise, it is a rather manly car. Much more manly than the Sylphy somehow! :X

From the fierce looking headlights to the black leather interior...

Also the car gave off a manly cologne scent when I first stepped in. Not sure if it's coz the previous driver was a guy but it made me wanna thump my chest and hunt boar. LOL

Mike likes it a lot for that factor I suppose...

Afterall I've always found men tend to love Subaru cars... Is it because of the All Wheel Drive? Coz the XV has that too.

The peeps at Downtown Car Rentals told me that the XV is actually like a baby SUV. This car is spacious but not super huge. I love that when you are driving it you are really high up and can see the roads clearly from the high angle.

The boot is as spacious as the Sylphy's.

What I love about SUVs is that you can have the option of piling your stuff in the boot up higher if you need to... The rear seats also fold down so you can transport LOADS of stuff! No more paying for Ikea delivery! :D

And people in the backseat can simply reach in and grab stuff if they need to without getting out of the car!

(I've been watching too much Walking Dead but I imagine this is useful in case of Zombie apocalypse and you have all your guns in the boot so you can conveniently shoot out of the window when being surrounded by zombies... versus having a sedan so you have to physically get out of the car to access your armory and will in the process get gnawed on.)

Baby car seat fits perfectly too! Of course what matters the most for baby isn't space... It's SAFETY!!

And the Subaru XV has a FIVE STAR SAFETY RATING. :D It feels so good to know that.

The XV also has a very weird feature that I think many of you will love!!

It is extremely fuel efficient!

During stop lights when you fully compress the brake, the engine actually shuts down.

It rumbles and stops, and it will startle you, making you think the engine has died if you didn't know that this is a specialty of the XV!! In fact, it is only trying to save fuel for you. The aircon and stereo is still on, it's just that the engine stops.

When I was told about this, I was quite scared.

"HUH??" I said. "Then isn't it gonna take a while for the engine to start up again?? And I will get honked by impatient people behind me!"

But the Downtown staff told me it only takes split second for the engine to reignite. Great technology!

Oh yes you may have noticed some of the extra stuff on my car.

Embarrassing and bright thing number 1:


I actually bought two Singapore flags to fly on the car window during the National Day period. After National Day ended, I modified my flag to put on flowers!!! My mom sewed them on for me and the flowers are from Daiso. :D

They look ridiculous I know but it looks so cute when the car is moving and the flowers are flying behind!! Also it makes me easier for me to find my car in a sea of other cars!! It stands out, that's for sure. LOL

I also believe it makes other drivers laugh so they will give way more to me. HAHAHA

Embarrassing and bright thing number 2:

A P PLATE?? N0000000000B!!!!


Time to throw my P plate away!!! LAO NIANG HAVE HAD A LICENSE FOR A YEAR NOW MUAHAHAHA!! I am no longer a NEWBIE DRIVER!!!


Want to rent a car too?

Nowadays COE is so expensive, renting is definitely the way to go!!!

Moreover, the holiday season is coming!!

It's probably going to be really tough to get a cab or squeeze into a bus during the holidays...

"Where are all the #$%^@# cabs?"

Why not rent a vehicle so the whole family can travel with ease? Don't have to worry about midnight surcharges after your countdown party and don't have to keep calling that horrible hotline that tells you all the operators are engaged at the moment.

Or squeeze into a train with other sweaty passengers...

Remember to reserve your perferred vehicle early in case all of them are taken!!

You can go to Downtown's website HERE to book!!!


If you love discounts and free stuff, you definitely definitely should join DUO Rewards, Tan Chong International's loyalty program!!!

Ok here's the deal... You guys think there is a catch or something. Surely you have to pay in some form to get something good right?


Membership is FREE, it's for life. AND ANYONE CAN JOIN DUO REWARDS, not just drivers or anyone with Tan Chong cars!!

Once you have signed up HERE, you can see a list of all the merchants that DUO Rewards is collaborating with to give you great discounts and offers!!!

Here are some of them - there are too many to list!!

- 10% off for Bintan Lagoon Resort
- Free sessions at True Fitness and True Yoga
- 10% off at Twelve Cupcakes
- 5% off at Pet Lovers Centre

Why pay full prices for some of your favourite products and services when you can get them cheaper by SIMPLY SIGNING UP?? NO CATCH!!

Of course, DUO members also get rewards for every dollar they spend on any services at Tan Chong, be it car rental, car servicing, car purchase or even renting service apartments.

Also, this year, DUO Rewards is the Official Automotive Partner of ZoukOut 2013, happening on 13 - 14 December!

Ticketholders who sign up for Duo at the point of purchase from Zouk’s website HERE will stand a chance to win drink coupons or free entry passes to Zouk + Phuture!!

For those who have not bought tickets yet and would like a shot at winning a pair of FREE ZoukOut passes worth $236, check out the contest below:

You can find out more about the contest at DUO Reward's facebook page HERE and of course remember to like it!!!


Love your furry friends and want to do your part to help those that need our help??

Get involved... Just click on the picture to be a part of LostPaws and help reunite lost pets with their owners!! It's something kind you can do just by keeping a watch for lost pets near your house!

LostPaws set up a community watch to increase the number of eyes out there to watch out for missing pets... to help ease the stress of both owners and pets!

Don't worry, you won't get spammed once you sign up, merely a notification when there is a missing pet in your vicinity.


Monday, November 25, 2013

Daily Dayre

So I was just saying that it is tough for me to continue blogging because I don't usually turn on my computer anymore, I just use my phone.


Introducing my DAYRE!!!

Been using Dayre for a few weeks now to try to update more... The app is really really a breeze to use and very addictive!

Basically it seems to be quite simple. 12am to 12am constitutes a "day". In chronological order, whatever you update that day will be consolidated into one blog entry!! You can also post an unlimited amount of photos, videos, text and cutest of all, put really fun stickers (ala Line) on your blog post!!

A Dayre sticker

I found myself updating quite a bit there... And even though the content tends to be quite mundane and is mostly made up of baby pictures, at least some blogging is better than no blogging!! (right???)

Today for the first time ever I went to the web url to see how it looks like on the computer and I'm pleasantly surprised!! It looks great!! I guess I just have really low expectations for an app website... Hahaha!

It looks like just a clean, minimalist blog.

So yeah just letting you guys know I kinda have another blog.

Bookmark THIS please!!

If you wish to also get a Dayre of your own you can download the app on the App Store or Google Play. Free, and very fun to use! Blogging has been dying down and I hope this will make blogging become more popular again. :D

A baby picture before I go.

He found the headband very funny too.

No, not an ad!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Longest Hiatus

I know you've all missed my blog entries, the ones that aren't advertorials.

I've had my longest hiatus ever since Dash was born, the longest break I ever took from blogging in ten years. And weirdly enough, it's this period of time that the most exciting thing happened in my life (having a baby) and I've had so many new interesting experiences and revelations to blog about, but I haven't been doing it. I wish I had the time to.

Let me explain a little about TIME.

The concept of TIME is a confusing one... My geeky engineer husband told me that time won't exist without the speed of light and that if you can go faster than light, you can time travel. Or something to that effect - naturally I didn't understand him, developed a headache and then decided it's best not to try to understand.

Now after being a mom, the concept of TIME has also changed for me. It used to be I'm not really aware of time wasting away - everyday I'm just happy doing my usual activities: Dolling up, shopping, meeting friends, sleeping, working, eating. I had free periods where I'm feeling bored and I'm diddling on my phone or dug up some old movie to watch.

But nowadays TIME is constantly going tick tock tick tock to me. My timeline is no longer only mine but intertwined with Dash's timeline. Every moment I'm acutely aware that my baby won't stay a baby forever. Soon he will be a toddler, a tween, an adult. It is a conscious choice for me to join my "time and space" with his "time and space", so I can watch him grow, play with him, create memories of him as a cute little helpless puff.

Every moment he could be doing something for the first time - say blowing his lips - and some of these things happen just ONCE. If you miss it, you miss it.

Eating a lemon for the first time

So TIME is a choice, and everytime I choose to spend time away from Dash, his life moves on and I cannot rewind that.

Just a few months ago when he was born... Sigh...

And this is why I haven't been blogging. Is it really that I don't have enough time? Not really, I do spend a lot of time on social media afterall. I do have many short bursts of time. I mostly post my instagram pics when I'm pooping, haha... Right, suggest to my friends not to touch my iphone if possible.

Or I use my phone to post photos and videos when dash is napping. I have time to do loads of other small non-time-consuming stuff, but what I do not have, is a luxurious long stretch of say 5 - 10 hours, when I can truly sit down and complete a good long blog entry. That's how long I usually take including photo editing time. And I don't want to write short patronizing blog posts because I am used to churning blog entries of a certain quality here and people expect that. (Ahem, yes I am aware that ironically this blog entry is quite short and patronizing)

Or rather, I guess I have to say I choose not to spend this time on writing blogs.

My mom is helping me take care of Dash, so of course I can dump Dash with her for a few hours to complete a blog entry. But with Dash just outside the Princess Room playing with my mom, I can hear them, and I simply can't just stay in the room and not go out.

If he chuckles, that's it, I'm done. That's why I have a dozen half written blog entries saved in drafts. I simply didn't bother to finish them because my heart wasn't in it. I keep getting distracted and side tracked. And can you blame me? Something so precious, my baby's TIME, is ticking away outside.

So I just keep telling myself: "Tomorrow, I'll blog tomorrow. Dash is so cute and cheerful today, I can't miss it." But he is cute and cheerful almost everyday. And when he is in a cranky mood, I feel worried and I feel like I need to resolve whatever is making him upset.

And not to mention... It is extremely exhausting being a mom, both physically (Pumping milk is a total bitch) and mentally.

I cannot even describe the mental distress a new mom feels when her baby is crying nonstop and she has no idea why or how to stop it. In the past, I loved to carry other people's babies but whenever they cried, I simply passed them back to the mom, thinking "She will know how to handle it, not my problem".

But now, I realised the moms DON'T know how to handle it.

They are simply playing a guessing game and doing trial and error so baby gets happy again. Is it hunger? Is it a wet diaper? Is it too hot or cold? Does he want to be swaddled or unswaddled? Is it gas and how do I reduce the gas? OR COULD HIS LIFE BE IN DANGER? It's really stressful... And exhausting.

So whenever I get the chance to, I always choose sleep. I used to sleep 12 hrs a day in the past. That's how much sleep I need to not feel grumpy and tired. And let's just say for the first 4 months especially I hit maybe about only half of my daily quota everyday! I was so sleep deprived that when I knew I was about to fall sick, I actually looked forward to it so I can have some guilt free sleep**! (*Guilt free sleep: Sleep that isn't a choice but a necessity, because if I had a choice I know I should be spending time with my baby)

Life is all about balances too... I can't devote 100% of my time to baby care either. I came to realise that motherhood involves a lot of really confusing and complex feelings. If my mom is busy and I spend a few days in a row staying at home with Dash, despite being very happy when I'm with him I also feel dissatisfied and angry. At first I couldn't understand my conflicting emotions - then I realised this is because I needed my personal time, and probably some rest.

It isn't easy having your life completely change when a baby arrives. It's also tough to accept that all the freedom you used to have and all the activities you used to enjoy, unless your favourite hobby was to change diapers, you are not going to be able to do frequently anymore. You love your baby and you love being a mom, but you also love it when he naps and you get a break from him. It's all very confusing.

Even when I'm laughing and playing with Dash, my mind is in protective Mom mode. I am on alert and looking out for any object that can hurt him, or trying to find out why he is whining or when is the next time to feed him. Even when he is sleeping I'm wondering if he is too warm or too cold, or how he might roll off the bed.

So after many hours of baby care, I just want to pass him to someone else I can trust, so I can relax, unwind and do my own shit. I don't want to be in charge of a vulnerable little being's life anymore for the next few hours. I just want to be in charge of my own happiness for a while. Even simply playing Candy Crush or taking a shower seems like ecstasy.

Everyday I thank my lucky stars I have my capable mother to help me. I really don't know how full time moms can do this on their own!! It's no wonder if they go a little crazy!!

The cycle goes on... I happily play with baby and take care of him, then I feel exhausted and someone else takes over (usually my mom), then I do relaxing stuff of my own or maybe sometimes even go out, then I feel guilty about missing time with baby, then I play with baby again. Just like that, SEVEN MONTHS WENT BY - NO TIME TO BLOG.

Today a rare thing happened. My mom brought Dash out by herself. And I'm at home with Mike alone. If Dash were home I won't be on the computer for sure. But he is out, and there is nothing I can do with him except wait for him to come home. I don't have to feel like time's a'wasting or feel guilty that I'm not spending time with him.

So I decided to blog. And at the very least explain why I haven't been blogging for so long. I'm sorry. I know I get a lot of my privileges in life because of my blog. This isn't me being ungrateful or lazy - well in general I AM a very lazy person I'll admit but I haven't been the last 7 months for sure - this is me simply treasuring too much Dash's babyhood. You guys can understand that, right? Right?

I can't resist this face...

And whatever time I have in between when he is asleep, I'm usually unwinding or resting as much as I can. But even as I do those, I'm doing it just to be a better mother for him when I'm done... So I can go back to baby duties without feeling disgruntled, cranky or tired. They say motherhood changes you, I just didn't know the shocking extent.

Now that Dash is older, he is easier to care for, and I hope I will be able to go back to blogging more.

To the little of you still left reading my ol' blog, thank you.

Dash's Mom, and occasionally Xiaxue