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I always promised myself that if I ever have a little bean I would not get overloaded with too much baby/kid stuff, like toys & playthings. It’s so easy to fall into that trap of wanting to get your little bean all the cute things you find. I truly envy those Europeans whose homes don’t look like children live there at all. Also those Euro-parents that can fit everything their baby needs into a super slim backpack. After taking my little bean on multiple trips, I tend to look at what other parents pack so I can take notes & pair down all of my essential items.

I’ve seen moms who bring out backpacks the size of suitcases, filled to the brim with everything (probably the kitchen sink too), & I have always made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t be that mom with the ginormous diaper bag (or one that remotely looked like a traditional diaper bag). The bag I use to carry my little bean’s diapering tools is still quite large-&-in-charge, but I think I’ve been able to slim it down as much as possible. Here is my ultimate list of top 3 absolute must-have essential items that I keep in my diaper bag at all times.

01.

A spare change of clothes. I have a small Ziplock bag with a spare long-sleeve onesie, leggings & a pair of socks packed in my bag at all times. It is inevitable that any little bean will “spill their beans” (no pun intended) while out & about. A spare change of clothes is absolutely necessary to have on-hand. Even if you’re only at the grocery store or shopping mall, you don’t want to keep your kid in their poopy clothes until you get home. It’s better to swap out their clothes wherever you can (I’ve done it in the trunk of my car), & it minimizes the chance of a little bean public freak out because they’re stinky, sticky & wet. (I also pack a spare Ziplock bag to throw the dirty/wet clothes in.)


02.

A first aid kit. I keep a small pouch in my bag for first-aid items like: bandages, a Tide stain remover pen, a pair of folding scissors, & a mini pill case filled with emergency adult items (i.e. Tylenol, acid reducers, etc.). I also keep a small tube of gum soothing gel for my little bean since she is currently going through her difficult teething phase. And you know, for mom specifically, I keep a little stash of sanitary napkins for those special times-of-the-month, if you know what I mean. Having a first-aid kit in the bag is super useful & can be customized to suit any family’s needs. It has come in handy many times while we’ve been on the road with no convenience store or pharmacy nearby.


03.

A fidget toy. My little bean is kind of weird & likes to play with things she can easily chew on like: straws, plastic spoons, or coffee drink stoppers. Pretty much anything she can gnaw on is her new favorite “toy”du jour, & no, she’s not into traditional teething toys or those silicone rings you pop in the freezer. However, I have found those pop-it fidget toys made popular by the mini-millennials of TikTok are an easy & affordable toy you can throw into any bag/purse to entertain your little bean while on the go. These toys are great because not only are they fidgets, some of them are made of BPA-free silicones/plastics, which is safe for the little bean to chomp on. I got my little bean the flower press toy by mushie (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B09Q55NT9Q/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1), & I’m so glad I thought of keeping it in her diaper bag. We’ve already used it at restaurants when she’s starting to get a little restless, & it’s kept her entertained for at least until we’re ready to pay our tab. I also love these toys because it’s inevitable for the little bean to drop everything on the floor after they get bored, & these toys are super easy to wipe down & throw back into your bag.


Those three items are the absolute top items I must bring with me at all times when I take my little bean out. Even if I don’t pack a traditional diaper bag when I take my bean on a little outing, I will definitely pack these three things in a mini bag. There are a couple of other optional things that I like to keep in my bag when we go out such as:

  • Anti-bacterial wipes: These are for wiping down all those fallen toys that my little bean will shove right back into her mouth to teeth on. Also, because of the you-know-what virus, it’s never a bad idea to have anti-bacterial wipes on hand to clean up sticky hands, or quickly wipe down anything the little bean might touch when you’re at a restaurant or public place. It’s also convenient for the parents to use as well.
  • One (or two) extra bibs in a Ziplock bag: My little bean is drooling a lot during her teething phase, so she often wears bibs to catch all the drool. An extra bib comes in handy when she soaks through the first one. Also, it’s a great barrier for those one-off, rare times the little bean might barf on the road, which my little bean did twice on our last road trip to Los Angeles two weeks ago.
  • An extra pacifier. Ok, so not all beans use pacifiers (& not all parents believe in those little suckers), but for those of us who do, it’s pretty handy to have an extra pacifier stowed away in the bag. I am a little more bougie & always keep at least two on hand. At home we have the mainstay pacifier that our little bean specifically uses for naps & bedtime (or when she gets ultra fussy). Then, on the road, the little bean has a travel pacifier that we don’t mind if it gets lost or dirtied.

Thank goodness my little bean is somewhat smoothly transitioning from the infant stage to toddlerhood. Then I can easily swap out items in her diaper bag that she no longer needs. It is also incredibly lucky for us that a few of our close friends just had little beans of their own. Then we are fortunate to pass down a lot of our bean’s gently loved items to her new friends. I almost can’t wait until my little bean outgrows her need for a diaper bag so I won’t have to lug around even more stuff when we go out together. I say almost ’cause I don’t want my little bean to grow up too fast. I still want to savor these precious younger times when she still has a need for diapers…& a need for me, her mama. Until the next diaper change, cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

I don’t mean to start this blog post off with drama, but the family “tea” just got turnt up to scalding hot, basically. Ugh! Why can’t our tea cups be empty for once?! Well anyway, I’m not going to get into specifics (as I usually say), but I will hint that a psychiatric evaluation is in order. Ok, maybe not that severe, but perhaps more like a psychological evaluation instead. That’s all I’m going to address on that topic.

So, it’s a new year & a whole new decade. I don’t have any elaborate resolutions in the new year. I only have one resolution, & that is to be more mindful of the things I say. More specifically that means that I want to continue to learn how to be less impulsive & careless in my abrupt/hasty reactions to situations, especially with the things I say. I want to incorporate more patience in my continuance to learn as well.

Often times, when a heated situation arises, & I open my spontaneous mouth to speak, I think I am being quick-witted, snarky, or justifiably defensive &/or reprimanding. However, I have come to learn that every time in those instances, I come off as offensive, ignorant of the “bigger picture”, naïve, narrow-minded, & a few times arrogant &/or judgmental. I often times end up with a proverbial foot in my mouth (sometimes two feet). My wayward lips just can’t seem to stop flapping about when it would be more wise to remain quiet, which is my roundabout way of saying I don’t know when to shut up.

Let me give you an example or two just for context. In the first instance, whenever I get into an argument or debate with Jian, I always get rightfully put in my place. I will say the first things on my mind impulsively without thinking through whether or not my statements are relevant or helpful to my argument. Jian will step in to correct my statements, or try to steer the conversation back on track, but I will only bolster my stubbornness & dig my heels in further to back up my abrupt comments. I don’t think my thoughts through. I just throw out a bunch of words hoping they will stick to something. My arguing style is very haphazard & careless, which is why I can never fully win an argument with Jian.

In the second instance, I become extremely reactionary when it comes to specific people in my life with whom I have a highly strained relationship. Oh, man. I am not exaggerating when I say I have a highly strained relationship with this person, not even a little bit. Whenever we get together with this person, the whole room fills with uncomfortable tension. As soon as the conversation starts, I can already feel my impulsive reactions bubbling to the surface waiting to explode. I have a difficult time stopping myself from shouting “You’re wrong! Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…” or something a little more colorful & off-hand.

I got my first taste of learning in the moment on how to bite my tongue when I don’t need to insert myself into a conversation during this past Christmas holiday. That specific person came home for the holidays & things had already been strained from previous incidents, yet this past Christmas break was especially awkward. There were more than a few times when I wanted to jump up onto the kitchen table & shout at this person directly to their face. However, I truly tried to enact actual change in my behavior by chanting to myself softly under my breath, “Do not react. Do not engage.”

You see, I really do want to succeed in this resolution. I understand that running my mouth doesn’t solve or do anything. I end up right where I started, at square one with nothing to show for it but with a whole lotta proverbial egg on my face & metaphorical feet in my mouth. I do have patience, as in I have patience in doing menial & repetitive tasks, but I understand that I have to channel that patience towards more useful aspects of my life…like when it comes to talking with others. This past Christmas holiday really, truly, taught me so much on how to approach my resolution for the new year. I am excited to see how far I will have come in my mental maturity. Until the next post, cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

After being severely ill (unfortunately after Christmas, I got the flu virus that everyone’s passing around these days), & getting through the new year, I’ve decided to gather all of my random thoughts, ideas, & other bits & bobs floating around in my head. This idea suddenly came to me the other day after I had dreamt two very bizarre & completely unrelated dreams. Here goes nothing.

1.) This thought has been stuck in my brain for a long time now, & I’m finally going to express it here. You know that song by Demi Lovato called SorryNotSorry? Well, I get the generic meaning of the song, you know, all about empowerment & not letting haters bring you down & all that good stuff. Well, every single time I hear that song on the radio, which is about 80 times a day, I can’t help but feel like this song is misinterpreting it’s own meaning. What I’m trying to say, to put it bluntly, is that I think this song is openly & arrogantly bragging about how much better you are than all your haters. Dude, there’s no subtle way to insert a “humble brag”. Bragging is in no way humble (or acceptable). To me, this song is just one long, public Cuss You to some bro you dated who disrespected your relationship, so you had to kick him to the curb, & then publicly shame him with your arrogant, pretentious lyrics. If you’re going to prove to someone or a group of haters that you’re doing better than they expected, or that you actually came out on top in the end, then show them! You don’t need to write an entire brag song about how much better off you are. Prove it with your results, your actions, & most importantly, don’t throw it in their faces & rub it in. Now that also just proves that you’re not actually better off, & that you’re stooping to their level, which I hope you vowed you’d never do. I can’t wait until this song finally loses its popularity & we can get better music on the radio.

2.) I have come to the conclusion that I could never own a pet. Don’t get me wrong. I love animals. However, I don’t feel any sort of emotional attachment to any particular animals. I’m not a cat person, nor am I Team Dog. Some of my relatives have dogs. I have a few friends who own both dogs & cats. They’re all great pets, well behaved & fun to play with, but it doesn’t make me have any feelings of wanting a pet of my own. I just can’t imagine myself getting so emotionally attached to a pet, or spending so much money on one animal. I can get by on financing my own human lifestyle. I can’t imagine the cost of having a pet (toys, food, medical, etc.). Pets are fun to play with, it I don’t want one for myself. This past weekend I saw all the fuss & complicated plans my friends went through with taking care of their dogs just to be able to go to a rock concert for one night. With all of the traveling that I do, I don’t think a pet would fit into my life. Jian constantly jokes about getting a dog, but when I remind him of how much work goes into caring for a pet, he immediately backs off of the subject. So, in the end, no pets for me.

3.) I have become irrationally infatuated with a popular UK actor. My fascination with this actor has become almost to the point of unhealthy & obsessive. This actor is currently making his rounds on all of the media outlets (magazine articles, talk show interviews, press tour Q&A’s). His most anticipated movie is premiering this weekend. I have been ardently following stalking his press tour on the internet lately, & the more I get to know this actor, the more endearing & attractive he becomes to me. I wish I could just let him go or better yet, block him from my mind. He’s just another incredibly good-looking Hollywood star. These types of guys are splashed all over the entertainment media news all the time. However, I am way too attracted to him. It only bums me out that this guy is very happily married to someone else with a growing family. I want him to be happy, of course, but my inner fangirl is both jealous & envious of the woman who holds his heart all to herself. I hope that once all the hoopla surrounding this guy’s highly anticipated movie dies down…like after the movie has been released…I can take a step away from his fandom & take a much needed breath/break. It’s kind of naiive & stupid of me to say this because as much as I try to take a step away from this actor’s fandom, I get thrust right back into the thick of it. Last weekend when I was in Los Angeles to watch The Killers in concert, I ran into this very actor while we were both eating at the same Italian restaurant. I spotted him having dinner with his wife & his agent a couple of short tables diagonally across from mine. I was of course fangirling & freaking out on the inside, but trying to act discreet & polite on the outside. Out of respect for this man, I did not take any stealthy ninja-like photos under the table with my smartphone. I did not approach him for an autograph or small talk. I very much kept to myself & observed him having a very animated yet quiet dinner with his dining companions as mentioned previously. As much as the crazy fangirl inside of me wanted him to notice me &/or pay any attention to me, I let him carry on with his life, & I carried on with mine…all the while, ogling this man from afar in a sort of non-discreet fashion.

4.) Speaking of fandoms, I have just secured my forever fandom of the rock band The Killers. I just went to one of their arena tour concerts, & it was one of the most memorable highlights of my concert-going experiences. I’ve already seen The Killers perform in concert 3 other times, & they were always in smaller concert venues. This time Jian & I made a weekend trip down to Los Angeles to see them perform at the Staples Center (where the Lakers play basketball). Man, oh man! I screamed & sang my lungs/heart out. I was buzzing with anticipation for this concert ever since I bought my ticket. It wasn’t only because we were going to see The Killers live, but we were also going to the concert with our best friends who have never been to a single music concert in their lives. They had no idea of the epic-ness that was about to blow their minds away. The four of us had the best time singing along & dancing in our seats. One thing I can definitely say about Brandon Flowers, the lead singer & co-founder of the band, is that he is a true showman with an incredible voice & vocal range. I guess that the Las Vegan in him. I mean, he is from fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada after all, & when The Killers celebrated the grand reopening of the newly renovated convention center in Las Vegas, Brandon walked on to the stage with two glammed-up showgirls on each arm. The band (at the time, consisting of only 2 original members & new back-up members) was so amazing to their fans. The biggest highlight of the concert was when they invited a teenage fan in the audience to come on to the stage to perform a song with them. That teenage girl totally killed it on the drums to the song “For Reasons Unknown”. The whole crowd was going nuts for this fan who got a once-in-a-lifetime experience with a seriously cool, caring, & heartwarming band. I will always remain a diehard fan of The Killers.

5.) While we’re on the subject of music & bands, I just wanted to make a note that I have become obsessed with the band Portugal. The Man! This band has captured my heart (& my listening ears). I love how all of the band members grew up together since their high school days living in Alaska. When being interviewed, the band often mentions that their parents were all supportive of them all being in a band together, & their parents encouraged their musical aspirations. It’s not only that their songs have catchy melodies & hooks, but their song lyrics are so incredible & creative.  I love how the band writes songs about their families, historical & current social issues, & about this current generation of millennials. Some of my favorite songs include:

ptm top 5

6. I’m so pumped up for this 2018 Winter Olympics!! I love watching the Olympics every time they’re broadcast on TV. I love the winter games more than the summer games, but my most favorite part is the opening ceremonies. I love seeing what each host city will create to showcase their city & country. Every time a new city is announced as the host city, I get super excited for the next Olympics. I am the most excited for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics, & I am hoping that I can arrage it so that I can actually be in Tokyo during that time…like try to stay with my cousins or some friends, but we’ll see. Until then, I’m going to enjoy these winter games in South Korea. I’m off to watch the opening ceremonies on TV now. Cheers!

Today’s song of the day:

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