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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Better late than never: Making time for the kids

When I was still at my full time job, the only time spent with Aiden (who was then our only child) was a few hours each night, usually after dinner and bedtime. As a brand manager in a multi-brand retail concept in the beauty industry, there was never a dull moment at work. I love what I was doing and never felt that it was a chore even when I had to work into the night for event set-up, going to work on weekends for a consumer event. I brought my work laptop home almost every day as I try to have dinner with Daddy Darren and spend time with Aiden before his bed time (which is not very early, usually after 10pm) before I get back to my emails & reports.

We were always looking out for interesting activities to do with Aiden, interesting places to bring him over the weekend for quality bonding time. I enjoy bringing him for swims, going to the parks and beaches to get closer to nature and have picnics which he enjoyed. We definitely brought him out often, to the malls, to the zoo, to the aquarium, to indoor playgrounds and on play dates.

With Ava, we realized we hardly go out as a family of four as we did not want to deprive her of quality sleep which she does indulge in quite a bit even now at 10 months old. She can take 3 naps ranging from half an hour to almost three hours in a day and her bed time is around 10pm. It was also more tedious going out and there were activities or places we wanted to bring Aiden which was not so suited for babies. As a result, we often have my parents care for Ava while we bring Aiden out.

After going full time for PriviKids in August and opening our first retail store, I have been spending substantial time at the store and have lesser time for the family especially the kids. One key reason for going full time for the business is to have better work life balance and to spend more time with Aiden and Ava and the initial months are tough.

Nowadays I get to steal little brackets of time on weekdays to fetch Aiden earlier from day care and either spend time playing with him at home or bringing him out for a nice treat or water play, and on some days, springing a surprise visit to Ava and bringing her & my mum out to the malls or taking her for a walk. The smiles on their faces and the connection we enjoy during these one on one sessions serve as a reminder to me, for the bigger goal we have.

I find myself trying to pry my fingers off my laptop and handphone to reply to one last email and keep my promise to play cars with Aiden and to snuggle up with Ava. Despite not spending a lot of time with Ava, she's really loving and sweet whenever she sees me and this reminded me that it's never too late. I may regret not having spent time with her in the past few months but every time we play together, it helps strengthen our bond.

This journey is not going to be easy and smooth sailing. I am enjoying every bit of it while trying my best to strike a balance with family time. I guess each role has its set of challenges in trying to achieve work-life-personal balance.

Caught this picture of Ava and myself while taking we-fies with her and love how she looked at me. Her eyes lighting up as though encouraging me on this journey and I know I will work hard and work smart to be a role model and inspiration to both my kids.


  1. it's always tough trying to strike the balance. I've been struggling with that too with two in tow. M constantly plagued with mummy's guilt. N sometimes on the one hand, i wana spend time with the kids, but on the other hand, i wish i had more ME time. the dilemmas of life. oh well, part of being a mom i guess. life is always throwing us challenges n i think u are doing a fab job with yr dreams and ur kids mummy Cher! Jia you!

  2. Thanks Janice! It is never easy whichever role we take, be it staying at home, pursuing a career or building your own business and there are bound to be sacrifices. Sharing about this and learning from fellow mums like yourself helps motivate me too. Appreciate your encouragement! And yes, I need to find time for myself but my kids are my priority now so spending time with them makes me happy too.


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