We have finally come to the last week of 2020, here are my personal reflections..
WFH with 3 kids
Warning: this turned out to be quite a rant
The biggest challenge this year was having to work from home with 3 kids during the Circuit Breaker (CB) period. Unlike others who had the luxury of “learning from home” at their own sweet pace, my team was actually rushing for a product launch. Besides actually doing the work I am paid to do, I had to 1) manage the twins home-based learning (be their IT support, slap them when they’re chatting or watching twitch instead of the teacher etc etc), 2) entertain the preschooler (this is a full time job imho *crazy laughter*), 3) stock the pantry with enough fruits and snacks every few days (because there is a reason why Fat X refers to the kids as LOCUSTS), 4) do meal planning and ensure that we have the ingredients to cook planned meals (praise the domestic helper, I did not have to cook. Working mothers who cook and bake during CB are true goddesses and have utmost respect and admiration!), 5) cry because redmart has no more delivery slots, the queue to go into ntuc is 10metres long, the shelves on Giant are empty and I HAVE TO FEED SIX HUMAN BEINGS!, 6) smile when I realize some eateries are open for takeaway and small grocers are offering deliveries for vegetables and stuff!
I know many people hate 2020 but it has been a mostly good year for me. The CB has unlocked so many precious hours for me to draw and sew. I even made some cute earrings after a long long break from jewellery making.
Unfortunately my biggest gains this year are my weight and dress size! Lack of exercise plus daily dalgona during the CB period finally took its toll on my slim physique and I gained a whopping 5% fat this year ( ﾟДﾟ)
Sadly, one close relative and two dear friends at work did not make it to the end of 2020. All of them passed on suddenly, leaving us bewildered and in deep shocking pain ρ(・・、)
So goodbye 2020.. it’s been a most weird year but thank you for everything!
So this is the last week of my hospitalization leave, I am seriously gonna miss my daily naps T_T
I seriously need to kick the habit of buying every new mechanical pencil I like XD I mean it seems like mechanical pencils have become the new nail polish for me >_<
Do I need brush pens? No.
Do I know how to use brush pens? Also no.
Should I buy them? Why not?
Some say these are like the Rolls Royce in the coloured pencils world. At about $4.50 per piece, I wouldn’t deny that ^_^;;
Also, I learned that expensive pencils doesn’t make me draw better :'(
Didn’t really draw this week because I was busy testing out the different coloured pencils hee hee..
needed pencil pouches for my pilot eno and loose stock coloured pencils. Although my pilot eno pencils had a nice little home in the form of a daiso acrylic drawer, my irojiten loose pencils were just lying homelessly inside my drawer.
What to do? Make more pouches lah! The most practical thing to make is the basic pouch without zippers (because I would have sewn more pencil pouch if I had better zippers lying at home!).
Then a while ago I also bought some mahjong fabrics.. so…
The mahjong masks are for my mum and 5 aunties.. the legendary mahjong sisters <3
I’m going back to work next week so I guess I’ll blog again in another 6 months or a year!
Recovering from the flu and throat inflammation. Haven’t been sleeping well. A close uncle suddenly passed away on 10 Oct and we are all trying to come to terms with it. 人生无常 :'(
Been feeling very tired, like dry eyes, whole body feeling heavy etc.. and I haven’t done any exercise at all, 都不知道为什么酱累 ^_^;
Also, I went to do an allergy blood test and got 0 for everything. Therefore, the mystery of what triggered my swollen eyes, swollen lips, swollen ears, itchy skin etc shall remain unsolved 🙁
Shopping (tee hee)
I finally bought the Faber castell polychromos!! Didn’t have enough money to splurge on the irojiten box sets so I randomly picked a few colours to try out. Spoiler: they’re not as nice to use (blend) as the polychromos lol. Some of the colours I picked are too light
Finished “The Alice Network” and it was awesome!! The ending was very satisfying and I liked that the side characters were based on actual persons and real events, although it’s heartbreaking to know that some of the events really happened. For e.g. the Oradour-sur-Glane massacre :'(
Stupid me forgot to check the colour chart for my 24 set. The 24 set doesn’t come with the skin base colour so I had to use one from the Koh I-Noor portrait set. Looks like I need to get some loose Polychromos pencils!
Kiki suddenly developed a fever after dinner and I had no choice but to feed her paracetamol that was prescribed in May. Luckily, the near-expired paracetamol managed to bring down her fever.
2 Oct Fri
Brought Kiki to the doctor in the morning and she was issued with a 5-day SHN (Stay Home Notice) because she was having fever, flu, cough etc. I am praying that it doesn’t spread to me. (Spoiler alert: prayers did not work at all)
3 Oct Sat
She was really restless at home so I had to think of stuff to entertain her, and let’s be frank here, as well as myself.
4 Oct Sun
Went out for a quick lunch with fat X because 1. Kiki was on SHN and 2. The twins wanted to stay home and play!
5 Oct Mon
Started waking up at night from pain in my throat. Omg >_<
Struggling to finish “Rose Under Fire”. It’s quite crappy compared to “Code Name Verity”, which is one of my favourite WW2 books.
6 Oct Tue
My sore throat seems to be getting worse and voice has also become more nasal and sexy. Kiki asks me to refrain from touching her because I might “infect her with the virus”.. I pinched her cheek and reminded her that she was the one who spread the virus to me.
7 Oct Wed
Finally went to see doctor and was given 5 days MC with SHN for the flu and sore throat.. really leh.. I’m already on hospitalization leave but now have an additional MC slapped on top of it. 我究竟是。。。 ╮(╯_╰)╭
The flu makes me tired and permanently sleepy even when I’m not taking medication. So that’s a good thing cos I get to take 2 good naps a day now.
Also, I finally finished “Rose Under Fire”. I think it was totally disrespectful of the author to make Maddie say “Julie would have died there.”, even though Julie is just a fictional character. Bleh. Anyway I’ve moved on to a new book “The Alice Network”. And yes, I’m back to WW2 spy stories!! Code Name Helene was such an enjoyable read, I need a few more good WW2 books!
So I went for a keyhole surgery on 24 September and was given one month hospitalization leave to recuperate from the surgery.
23 Sep Wed
I went to work in the morning and came home after lunch to prepare for the surgery. Had wanted to work the whole day but the nurse advised me to stay at home because the drug that clears the bowels is very effective and I should be physically near a toilet all the time.
I AM GLAD I TOOK HER ADVICE. I can totally imagine the watery sai avalanche happening while I was like, say.. walking to the bus stop, waiting for a bus, or HORROR OF HORRORS while INSIDE a bus. And I can already picture the stomp or mothership headline “Middle-aged woman unable to control bowels lets loose on board SBS bus“
No, I don’t intend to be famous.
So anyway the laosai was pure torture and I did not know that the human body was capable of expelling so much liquids from the bowels within such a short span of a few hours. My bowels worked hard all the way till midnight and I went to sleep gratefully after that, fatigued from the hardship of shitting water and depressed with the knowledge that I had to wake up in 5 hours’ time..
24 Sep Thu
Because the bloody reporting time was freaking 6.30am and to add on to the sadness it was also raining, so I stood at my void deck and started singing 天空不要为我掉眼泪 ~~~
Once at the hospital, things started moving (quite fast, I would say).. before I know it, it was 8.30am and I was lying on the narrow bed in the OT, shivering from the cold (or from the fear, I may never find out). The IV insertion hurt quite a bit but it was nothing compared to the epidural injection. When someone tried to put the gas mask on my face I choked on the gas and pushed it away..
Aaaaaand… the last thing I remember from the OT was someone apologising to me about the gas mask. He probably had the last laugh though, because..
(IT’S JUST LIKE IN THE MOVIES!!)
When I woke up, it was like 10.30-ish, the surgery was over and I was lying on another bed in the recovery room! It’s like magic! And I had the BEST SLEEP OF MY LIFE! A deep, dreamless sleep! I have been a poor and light sleeper all my life; my sleep is usually full of action-packed dreams (think mountain-climbing, running away from zombies in haunted house etc) so it’s quite accurate to say that I hardly get a good night’s sleep.
I vaguely remember the nurse at the recovery ward commenting on my age “you’re in your 40s! I think you look more like 30 or 31!“.. and then later she made a phone call to Fat X on when I would be pushed to my ward etc.. and then I accidentally fell asleep..
So the rest of the day was totally blissful because I was not in pain and kept falling asleep, totally not bothered by the nurses who constantly checked on me every hour. My phone was returned to me at around 3PM but I was more interested in sleeping..
The only discomfort was the IV drip, my sore and scratchy throat, and some bites on my inner lips but these were quite minor..
I spent the rest of the day sleeping and generally chilling.. thankfully I did not experience any giddiness, nausea, or vomiting and was able to have some porridge and fruits for dinner! Because I was so hungry, I already drank soy milk and ate a tub of tau huay before that ^_^;
The pain was very mild compared to a cesarean and I was able to get up from the bed and walk around the room on my own.
25 Sep Fri
After a yummy breakfast, I felt energised enough to start drawing! The nurses were so amused by my colour mechanical pencils X’D
I finished reading Code Name Helene with a broken heart and told myself to do a fanart of Nancy Wake someday. Seriously, she’s freaking awesome!
Fatty X brought me home at around 5pm
26 Sep Sat
The horrible back pain started today.. #想死
I spent most of the day in bed.
27 Sep Sun
Wanted to go out for lunch but decided to stay home instead.
WISE CHOICE. Read on a while more to find out why.
So I was playing with Miao’s colour pencils again. Did a fucked up job on the cheeks and did not want to waste my work on the eyes (I always start with the eyes).. so I made the cheeks into some kind of tribal stripes gone wrong.
At this moment I was already damned sian.. but I cannot be so evil and let her be a botak right? So I braved on and started colouring her hair in a unique combination of greens and yellow!
Yes she looks damned 奇怪 but I secretly love this look!
28 Sep Mon
All the kids are back in school!!! Yay!!! Full of confidence, I went to NTUC with my helper today. Although I didn’t carry anything heavy (we brought a trolley), the backache intensified on the way home. At one point it got so bad that my whole body started to ache and I started to feel cold and worried about fainting on the road side.
Thankfully I managed to make my way home safely.
Immediately went to shower and lie in bed. Accidentally (but happily) fell asleep.. woke up to cook a random lunch and KO again after that. Accidental naps are the BEST!
29 Sep Tue
Today I decided to draw a picture for 中秋节!
This woman took me almost six hours to complete and I developed an epic backache from sitting for so many hours. So I spent the rest of the afternoon lying in bed
Solid shampoo and conditioner from Skincare Co AND kakuno fountain pens from Qoo10 arrived today!!
Also, I removed the dressings today and it was quite eventful. The belly button one was ok, it was dry and I couldn’t see the wound at all (quite possibly hidden by my layers of tummy fats). The other two wounds? Not so lucky!
Because the compression bandage was so sticky, I accidentally split open the skin while removing the bandages. The cut on my cesarean scar started to bleed and took some time to stop. By then I started to freak out and had fainting spells in the bathroom. In the end I before I felt strong enough to stand up and shower. #吓死人
30 Sep Wed
Happy to receive my loot from overjoyed today!! Bought 2 preppy fountain pens for the twins, a Sailor Fude for myself, a pencil sharpener (yes, I do not need another sharpener but it doesn’t hurt to have a few backups in case all my sharpeners go missing or get broken etc), and a box of colour pencils in portrait shades!
Did nothing today but eat, sleep, shit. The back pain is still there and the wounds are itching so much TuT
Erm.. so it’s been almost 8 months since my last post ^_^;
So COVID-19 happened, and Singapore went into Circuit Breaker mode.. I endured gruelling hours of WFH with 3 kids at home, with the aircon breaking down during the hottest months of the year. I deserve a bloody copper medal for everything sia (precious metal medals reserved strictly for the real heroes <3)
But then I also enjoyed the CB tremendously because I get to stay at home every single day! Instead of wasting time on commuting to wherever, I was able to do a lot more drawing and sewing at home!!
Speaking of drawing, I’ve drawn a few more pastel pieces since my first Marilyn Monroe portrait X’D
My addiction to mechanical pencils with coloured leads grew somewhere in the beginning of CB.. and I also started learning how to draw using the twins’ Faber castell colour pencils just after CB ended! 其实小学生用的色铅笔也是不错的啦!
During and after the CB I also sewed a fuckload of masks.. mostly for family. This kind of thing happens when you have 3 kids – 2 of whom outgrew their original mask size within months, and third one having to change 4 to 5 masks each day because every mask she puts on her face needs to be fresh (insert roll eye emoji here)
The pouch that I sew has a tissue holder and 2 separate pockets for masks. I extended the original design to include an additional pocket on the other side and I’m rather proud of this hack X’D
Sewing is super therapeutic and I love the loud humming of my sewing machines.. <3
Also, I discovered that barbie clothes are a great and fun way to use up fabric scraps!
I even made a wardrobe using a shipping box, and a pair of disposable chopsticks. Mini hangers made using craft wire.
Lalala~ here’s how I spent last Saturday doing what I love!
I can’t stop raving about Teacher Gina! She is soooooo patient and she has magic fingers that can turn all my mistakes into smooth blended shading lol!
Also, Teacher Gina actually stayed back for almost 2 hours to help me finish up the portrait because I was like aiyah the face already done liao so I shall just anyhow draw the ears and clothes lah but she managed to save those too!!! hee hee hee..
Therefore I’m attending her basic features drawing class tomorrow!! Hope I can learn more useful tips! like how to hold a pencil properly cos I realised I’ve been holding my pencil wrongly while drawing!
More nana green tea ❤❤❤ hope I can finish the class up by 8pm!
More info on nagomi art classes can be found on this website!