Saturday, November 27, 2010

Farewell to Penzance

We have left Penzance, Tai's first home.
It is bitter-sweet, seeing the house all empty again but we're giddy at the exciting few months ahead of us.

We are heading to Jersey for the next 6 weeks, to spend Christmas and New Year's there, as well as a lot of family time. In a roundabout way, Matt will get an extended paternity leave now which is fantastic.

We'll return back to England in mid-January, where we'll set up our new home somewhere in the Wiltshire area. We'll first house-sit for Matt's aunt and uncle in Shaftesbury. They have just recently bought a new home there and won't be moving in until spring, so
by occupying the place for a while, it would help them out. Perfect for us too!

After the unfortunate - yet foreseeable - ending of Matt's work with Plug Into the Sun, he is now forging ahead with a few former colleagues, who will be acting as investors and mentors, to build a new solar company in the UK.

It didn't take us long to weigh up the pros and cons of embarking on this new chapter. Although there will be a lot of work and energy needed in the next few years, we hope this will be a fruitful and satisfying venture.

Thank you for a fabulous 9 months, St. Michael's Mews. We will not forget you. We will bring Tai back one day to show him his first home... where it all began in the wee hours of the morning on June 30th with a big of cramping and moaning...

Sunday, November 21, 2010

In the Big Smoke

Tai's first trip to London! We met up with the other Thorningtons which was lovely.

It seems like suddenly there are babies everywhere!

It will be so nice for all the second cousins to grow up together.

The New Generation.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

jumperoo, we love you!

To add to our growing collection of baby paraphernalia, we now own a Fisher Price Rainforest Jumperoo.

Tai absolutely loves it. He jigs and dances around in it, spins the wheels and laughs to himself.

Hours of fun (not to mention great stimulation and development) for him = a bit of spare time for Mummy!!

It's a win-win situation and those are the best.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

across the pond

In two days we will be taking Tai on his first plan journey across the Atlantic to meet his Wong family. I am so excited, and am surprised by how excited/giddy/anxious I am.

There have been many months of preparation on the Canadian side, from arranging a substitute car seat and buggy to organizing Thanksgiving get-togethers with as many relatives as possible.

The one thing that I have worries about is the time difference.

At the exact time where we will be gathering for dinners, Tai would normally be fast asleep.

We will just have to make sure he adjusts to the time difference as soon as we land. Oh well, que sera sera.

Matt will be returning back to the UK after one week to go back to work. Tai and I will stay on for an extra week.

Seeing how much he is changing and developing every single day, already I know we will miss our little unit of three.

Still, this trip is mainly to introduce Tai to his great-grandparents. It is considered the absolute highest achievement and honour when one lives to hold his/her own great-grandchild in the world. Tai will not remember this trip but there will be plenty of photographic evidence, that I'm positive.

Monday, September 20, 2010


I am getting to know Tai more each day.

I am able to read his body language, his cues and can anticipate what he may want next - possibly even before he realizes it himself.

We marvel at each other, lock eyes and both of us crack open the widest grin imaginable. I feel my heart literally jump up and down. Is it physically possible to have an internal organ detach itself like that for a split second? It certainly seems to be possible in my case.

With new discoveries everyday, I feel more vulnerable and protective over this little human being, who is showing me his many shades and colours and temperaments.

In all honesty, I have to say Tai is a pretty laid-back baby. He rarely cries, and when he does, it's for a good reason.

I have discovered that he absolutely hates loud noises. Today I let loose one of my massive sneezes and he just started to scream bloody murder. Up until then, he had been happily sitting in his bouncy chair for close to an hour, sucking his fists like there was no tomorrow.

I catch myself gazing at him, memorizing every single square millimetre of his beautiful face.

I can remember life before him, but what's different is now I cannot imagine life without him.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

a new sense of time

Time is more precious than ever before. I now only get snatched minutes of time to accomplish something that normally I would do in mere seconds.

Depending on what is top of the priority list, those things could be taking a shower, making a phone call, washing a load of laundry, eating breakfast/lunch or more often than not, brunch, or simply closing my eyes for a 5 minute nap.

Life is full and often the days are made up of a similar routine.

It's amazing how quickly the time goes when all you do is ensure a little baby has enough sleep, food, and clean nappies.

Tai is beginning to be more alert during the days and he's started to smile and chuckle. It's awesome.

He'll hear you coming and start thrashing his legs and arms around wildly.

When you peer over his face, he'll break out into this humongous open-mouthed-gummy-grin.

You can't help but grin and laugh back. It's just one of those natural reflexes that you just do when a baby smiles at you.

This must be that giddy endorphin-charged feeling that so many parents talk about.

I think I get it now.

* pics from Aunty Claire, Great-Aunt Jan, Granny and Grandpa's visit.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My Son

I remember it took a while to get used to using the word 'husband' in my everyday vocabulary when I got married.

However, calling Tai my 'son' just seems to roll off the tongue, like I've been doing it my whole life.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

first week - bewilderment

This first week has passed by in a complete blur.

Let's just say this parenting business involves a very very very steep learning curve from the moment you hear that first cry.

Throw in random sleep patterns, messy tar-like substance poos, leaky boobs and an unimaginable sore body, then you can kind of envision what this week's been like.

Matt's been great at being the Director in Communications, fielding emails, phone calls and Skype video chats all over the world.

It's incredible to think that when Matt was born just 36 years ago, news of his birth was announced to relatives via telegrams!

And now we have instant video conferences to any corner of the planet with a decent internet connection. That is pretty amazing.

We have been spending about 80% of the day in bed, alternating between fitfully sleeping and just staring at our beautiful new son.

The rest of the world seems to have been put on
semi- permanent hold....

Thursday, July 01, 2010

a family of 3 now!

Tai has joined us in the world!

He was born on Wednesday, June 30, 2010 at 8:17pm. He weighed a healthy 7lbs 12oz.

So much to report but I'm running on 'baby time' and now I understand when new parents say they have no time for anything.

The important thing is we are happy and healthy.

This little business of being sleep-deprived will sort itself out, I'm sure ;)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

an inducing kind of weekend

This weekend was FULL-ON!

Saturday morning we walked around Penzance and took in the Mazey Day festivities.

Once a year, Penzance puts on a real street party, full of parades, music, boats, food, funfair, etc.

It's all really lively and the weather was just perfect - hot!

We then met up with Claire and Anthony at the gorgeous beach of Lansallos, down a long, steep smuggler's path which then opened into the sea.

It was such a hot day that all of us went in for a refreshing dip before munching on snacks and sunbathing on the beach.

We then had a lovely pub dinner in Fowey before heading out to the Eden Project for the Jack Johnson concert!

The next morning we had traditional Canadian-style pancakes with maple syrup.

We then walked around town some more to see more of Mazey Day celebrations.

We capped it off with watching the World Cup match before crashing into bed.

It was an active weekend for sure... and I was going to pay for it later...

Friday, June 25, 2010

Whose body is this anyway?

Isn't it strange how every day seems to drag on sometimes... but when you look back at the week, that seems to have flown by.

I am participating in Tai's first lesson to his mother: Parental Patience. You cannot hurry things that cannot be hurried.

On the physical front, I'm noticing some ungainly stretch marks on the bottom of my belly.

Because I haven't been able to see what is happening south of my belly button for several months now, I've been in blissful denial and thought I was one of the (few) lucky women who've managed to go through pregnancy sans stretch marks.

And then one day I dared to look in the full-length mirror... and staring back at me was a dizzying array of reddish marks. 'War Wounds' is what many people call them. I prefer to call it my 'Badge of Honour'.

It's absolutely remarkable what little control you have over your body, especially at the later stages when your skin is stretched and pulled in all directions. I'm retaining quite a lot of water as well, noticeably in my legs/feet and arms/hands.

I've been avoiding the scale in the bathroom for several days now. Before it was fun to see how many pounds I would put on each week.

But there comes a point where it's not funny anymore... that point was after the 40+ lbs mark for me... yikes!

I had a sudden surge of confidence this morning though and stepped on. It was more curiosity that spurred it on I think, but i was pleasantly surprised and befuddled to find that I had lost 3 pounds in the past few days. How is that possible?

It seems so silly and petty to worry about such things, especially when it is an absolutely blessing and honour to be carrying a child. Still, I think many women do worry about such things, whether or not they share it.

All our lives we've been able to have pretty much full control over our bodies, and then for a short period in our lives when we are growing another person, it all seems to go out the window!

Yesterday I met up with several of the NCT (National Childbirth Trust) ladies that we did the course with. NCT is a charity for parents and parents-to-be. They offer advice, classes and online shopping too!

Anyways, we participated on a prenatal course and met some really nice, like-minded couples. We are all due around the same time (me and another girl are on the same day) so it will be nice to be going through the same stages of parenthood together.

Anyways, the 4 of us that got together at the Blue Bar in Porthtowan yesterday was quite a sight to behold! After our leisurely lunch on the patio, we strolled down towards the sea, acquiring quite a few comments (nice ones, mind you) and stares. It isn't everyday you see 4 heavily pregnant women waddling on the beach!

It's been glorious weather lately. Sunny but bearable with the sea breeze. I'm so consumed with this pregnancy and wondering when it will end... and summer is passing me right by!

* Pics on this entry are of us on the Men an Tol walk last weekend.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Car seat and isofix-bar installed in the car - check.

No-sew dinosaur blanket made - check.

Who needs a sewing machine when you can knot your way to a soft fleece blankie?

It's the love that went into it that counts, that's what I tell myself at least!

Belly cast made - check.

Fun, messy and
memorable! A great fruit bowl, I reckon.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

To my unborn son

I have always dreamt that one day I would be a mother, a nurturer, someone who would have the privilege to share the world with my children.

That day is approaching.

We are expecting your arrival any day now with excited anticipation and with a huge dose of impatience.

What will you look like? Will you have your father's sea-blue eyes and my thick dark hair? Will you have my stubby toes? Or his long, strong legs?

When we first found about you, I was ecstatic, overwhelmed and scared all at once. Was I ready to become a mum? Well, ready or not, I have enjoyed these past nine months more than I ever thought I could.

Every night without fail, I have dreamt about the imminent labour, your birth, your first cry, the first moments of holding you in my arms, the first time we bring you home, the uncertainty of what to do with a new-born baby mixed with the exhilaration of being honoured to be your care-giver.

I can hardly believe these dreams will soon materialize into reality.

These past 9 months have been full of adventure and change. We bought a house, moved countries and are now settled in a place where neither of us have ever been to. We have read up on pregnancy and childbirth as much as we could, attended ante-natal classes and discussed our dreams and thoughts for countless hours. We've even written up a will in the unlikely circumstance that life could take an unfortunate turn for the worst.

But are you ever truly ready to become parents?

We've acquired quite a collection of 'must haves' in terms of the hardware that comes with caring for you. The Moses basket came with three left legs which your Dad immediately sorted out with some creativity - and the stumps of my piano stool. Now it is perfect; all that's missing is a little person to fill it.

We've got a fabulous bright red pushchair and the most adorable little clothes with matching socks. We can't help but spoil you already.

I've met many other parents and parents-to-be (mainly mums) and I am overwhelmed by the strong social networks that are out there to help us in any and every possible situation. There is comfort in knowing that there is a vast amount of information out there when we are so far away from our families.

I realize these last few precious days will be something of a pleasant memory; the leisurely mornings, the peaceful strolls around town, the fact that I can do what I want, when I want. Pretty soon you will be here and our focus will shift dramatically. I embrace these changes to come, and although I can't say for sure how I will cope, I am definitely entering this new phase with open eyes and open arms.

You have taken very good care of me during the pregnancy. You taught me how to take care of myself by ensuring I keep fit and eat well. You showed me how to embrace my leisure time and to indulge in my passions and hobbies.

You have brought your father and me even closer, when I didn't think that was possible. You have made us so proud already by growing big and healthy with each passing week.

We couldn't be happier.

Already you have brought so much joy to everyone in our lives, near and far. I can't believe the power you have over us, the way you have been able to knit our families closer together. Just simply by being you and existing.

There is so much I want to show and share with you. I can hardly wait, sometimes I think I'm going to burst. Of course I'm under no illusion that life comes with its ups and downs and although I don't know how it will all work out, this much I know: you are very much loved.

Friday, June 11, 2010

a brush with royalty

Friends Naoko and her honey-bunny, Satoshi, came to visit us yesterday.

He's doing a 6 month research study on the Middle East in Cambridge and
Naoko came to visit for several days.

Being the train buff that he is, they have criss-crossed the country by rail and made sure they included Cornwall in their itinerary.

The last (and first) time I met Naoko was at our Ka
zakh wedding in Xinjiang 5 years ago. It was nice to see her again and get to know her better.

Their visit coincided with the Royal Cornwall Show, the biggest fair in Cornwall of the year, where thousands of people flock to the grounds to see the animals, taste the local produce, shop at the local stalls, etc.

Plug Into the Sun had a booth in the Green Energy tent.

And look who we got to see up close and personal! Charles and Camilla! Ooohh!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010


I'm 36+ weeks now and am so ready for Baby to come out.

It's been hard going these past few days. Tiredness (but unable to sleep well), leg cramps, swollen limbs and just overall feeling very 'heavy'.

I can't imagine what it'll feel like sans bump.

A part of me can't wait to share the baby with the world. And the other part of me wonders if I'll cope with having to share the baby with the world.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

36 weeks of belly

No need to say anything here.

Pictures can speak for themselves this time.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

local Cornish weekend

Yesterday we took advantage of the sunny weather and went down to the Lost Gardens of Heligan to walk around.

A hidden garden that was discovered and beautifully restored to its natural wonders, it is a peaceful place to spend the afternoon and take in the wildlife, plants and natural fauna.

Today, after some baby shopping at Mothercare in Truro (we finally bought a car seat and found a solution to our mattress problem for our Moses basket), and a maternity ward tour of the Treliske Hospital, we heard on the radio that the Cornish Pirates were playing Munster in the Britis-Irish Cup final.

So we went to the Camborne Rugby Field to try and get some tickets. Although there were only standing tickets left, it was a fantastic game - and the rain held off!

That evening, after a nice hot bath to soothe my achy legs, we settled down for a hot meal.

The week-end ended on a high with a surprise email from the Eden Project saying that 4 Jack Johnson concert tickets for June 26th had suddenly become available and that we were next on the waiting list!!!

What luck! Now we just have to convince baby not to pop too early!