2017 is MY year!

Definitely looking forward to a lot of blessings for this year!

There are a lot of things about to happen now in my life. For what it’s worth, most of these things are good so that makes me happy. I definitely look forward to these in the coming weeks/months – so I am just keeping my fingers crossed that everything will go well!

I rarely share anything personal or trying to keep the “rambles post” on the low. But I thought there’s just too much to look forward to, I’d share some bits and pieces here!

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Fab weather + Mother’s Day promo = great day!

Glorious sunny day for a run!

What a nice way to start the Irish Mother’s Day for sure!

Mother’s day is being celebrated a bit earlier than I got used to here in Ireland. I am not sure whether it applies to all European countries (or Commonwealth?). So, I am not accustomed to celebrating it on March.
Well, my husband and I decided to stick to “what we’re used to” and celebrate it on May. But that doesn’t mean we can’t go out and make the most of the deals available when the Irish celebrate theirs on March, right?

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Paddy’s Day in Ikea!

ikea

On Paddy’s Day, we went to IKEA to buy some household stuff..

Let me start this post by saying that it is not what I initially had in mind. You know, this entire blog entry. But then, I guess I wanted to share something a little bit different (apart from food reviews and travel) in this blog – being a parent.
On Paddy’s Day, my husband and I planned to go to Ikea to buy a couple of household items. I made a list to make sure that I bought everything and to prevent myself from buying tons of things I don’t really need. Well, I ended up buying a couple of things I may not need. But still proud to say that I didn’t overdo it this time, yay!

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Little one’s trip to Panda Play Cafe

panda play cafe

My son turned three last month and we took him to Panda Play Cafe so he can have fun..

My son turned three years old last month. Sometimes, it feels surreal to realize how time flies. Of course, hard parenting times are there – especially without having any form of support system from relatives because we live abroad. But just to see my son grow before my eyes make me emotional sometimes.

birthday cake
Of course, he had cake at home!

One of the reasons why there are times I feel bad for my son are milestones such as birthdays. Throughout my childhood, I celebrated this day with cousins and neighbors. They were also the same persons whom I consider as my close friends while growing up. But for him, it is hard to organize such events without spending a lot of money. Doing it DIY (to save a bit) is not an option either as we don’t have space to cater for guests at home.

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Panting around the convention center

across the convention center

After three long years, I found myself (again) running around the convention center

I can’t believe it is 2017 already! And with the arrival of this year, there are a couple of personal improvements I wish to do for myself. I don’t want to tag it as New Year’s resolution per se – I tend to break those. But I’ll just try my best to keep doing it!

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Making the most of the sunny Dublin weekend!

Samuel Beckett bridge

So, it’s sunny Dublin this weekend – what to do?

After a tremendous battering of wind and rain over the past two days, the weather this weekend was superb! Especially if we are to consider that it is still technically winter – to be treated to a very sunny day is something no person should miss. Even if it was so cold and chilly, it was a great chance to go out after being mostly indoors for the past months.

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Black Friday Weekend in Dublin

Coffee Angel

Some personal time-off during the Black Friday weekend in Dublin..

Last weekend was one of the days when I get to have a little bit more time for myself. I booked an appointment to go to a hair salon (Toni and Guy) at Clarendon Street to get a haircut and highlights done. I still did the groceries in the morning but made sure to go through the aisles I need to be and don’t spend a lot more time checking out the specials.
After the groceries, I went home quickly to grab some lunch and placed the groceries where it should be. And because my son wasn’t home (went to a play area with my husband), I finished everything quickly, too. I even had spare time to watch TV and prepare the vegetables to cook later in the evening!

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Winter activity for toddlers: Rugbytots!

Rugbytots

Have you heard of Rugbytots?

Since relocating to Dublin, I’ve realized my son’s childhood will not be the same as mine. For one, as parents, it is an additional task for us to find a way so he mingles with other kids. It is not the same as simply “dropping by the neighbors” or visiting aunts/uncles to meet up with cousins.
He is not enrolled in a daycare as well. We have a nanny coming in to take care of him while I work during the day. So if you think about it, he is only interacting with kids his age if he bumps into them while outdoors during summer.

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Gallery viewing at the CHQ Building

CHQ Building

This is what happens when you bring a toddler inside the CHQ Building

One of the things I “learned” after relocating to Dublin in 2012 is to make the most of every opportunity to go outdoors. Not really for myself but for my rapidly growing toddler. I think of myself as mostly an introvert anyway. So in most days, I am happy spending the day indoors. However, I notice the more my son grows, the more he “craves” for outdoor activities or the chance to play outside.
It wouldn’t have been an issue if the weather is ALWAYS nice. But now that autumn is here, it is a little bit more tricky to strike the right balance to let him enjoy outdoors and prevent him from getting sick at the same time. I do allow him to have a quick walk outdoors so long as it’s not raining or too windy – to catch some fresh air!
Before 2016 ends, I have to use a couple of annual leave days before 2017 arrives. So I planned to take a day leave starting October until December to use the days sporadically. And on those days, I’ll get the chance to enjoy (really?!) some time with my son, too!
On the first day I took the time off, it was surprisingly sunny. Not warm, though. But at least, there was no hint of gray clouds around. So I took my son for a quick walk outdoors. I thought it was a good chance to have a change of scenery for myself as I’ve been working from home, too.
On that day, I decided to take him to CHQ – same venue as the recently concluded Oktoberfest. I ditched the Luas and walked to get there to enjoy some breath of fresh air. I think my son also liked the scenery as he was so excited pointing at cars on our way there.
When we got there, I let him run a bit outside the CHQ Terrace. We arrived at the area around 2 PM. Unexpectedly, it was STILL slightly busy. There were some heading to grab a quick lunch while others on their way back to work.
After a few more minutes, I decided to take him inside the CHQ building – it was a little bit cold. At that moment, the dining area was still slightly filled with people. I’d probably consider going here at a later time to make sure most have finished their lunches and on their way back to work.
After we got inside, my son hurried to a small art gallery exhibit located at the back of the CHQ building. I didn’t have the time to check which exhibit it was for – I was too preoccupied running after the little fella! Luckily, there was nobody around when he stormed inside – we had the entire room for ourselves!

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We didn’t spend much time inside but it was a good chance for me to catch my breath. I think my son liked the photos on display, too. He was too busy checking everything out!

AirBnb Personal Experience: Our Galway accommodation

Galway

So, this is what we experienced in our AirBnb accommodation in Galway

Disclaimer: All opinions are my own and from my personal experience with the AirBnb accommodation/owner. I will also not indicate the name of the owner, even if I knew her first name.

On our long weekend trip to Galway, we used AirBnb for our accommodation. I think it was literally a week before the trip that we decided to finally proceed. And if we were to consider booking a hotel for that trip, we can bet that the price would be quite steep, especially as we have to book separate rooms to accommodate us and my friend.
For that trip, we booked a 2-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom/toilet penthouse apartment. There was another 2-bedroom apartment located at the city center we considered that has Wi-Fi but only had one bathroom. We thought that even if we had to pay more in this penthouse apartment and without Wi-Fi, at least we have the convenience of having two bathrooms. Continue reading “AirBnb Personal Experience: Our Galway accommodation” »