Parenting »

Thoughts: Parents and Authority

28 October 2017 – 10:55 am | One Comment

‘Gee, I can’t talk to my kids! They simply don’t listen to me!’
‘They just don’t obey me!’
‘I can’t get through to my kids.’

Here’s one common issue parents face today , that is: the LACK of …

Read the full story »

From the ups and downs of parenthood, to practical tips on enjoying and managing life with children.


Where inspiring thoughts and treasured life lessons are learned and shared.

Places to Visit

From Hong Kong to Bali, from Universal Studios Singapore to farmstays and beaches in Perth, we share photos, info and tips with you!

Crafts & Activity Ideas for Kids

How many different things can we do with our little ones at home and outside? Too many.


Where precious daily moments are captured and seen through the lens. Sharing with you tips, iphone apps, and ideas too.

Home » Daily, Parenting

Stay-at-home Mom : How to stay sane

14 April 200930 Comments

I’m a stay-at-home mom of two kids. And I do get asked by people about how it’s like.

Do you get bored? Frustrated?
You don’t have a live-in maid, how do you cope?
How do you juggle everything – the house, cooking, working from home, spending time with kids?
Do you even sleep?

In short. How do you stay sane?

I don’t think there’s any easy answer to them. And I don’t think I can explain it all in one blog post. In fact, I’m still learning to juggle it all as well as I can too. Every day.

But anyway. I thought I’d share some of the things that keep me going. And sane.

Here they are:

– Know (and believe in) the importance of your role as a stay-at-home mom
When we know the grand and invaluable purpose of what and why we do something, we’ll have the willingness and determination to look beyond today’s difficulties and challenges.

I wrote a post on this sometime ago, click HERE to read it.

– Explore and pursue your passion
What are you passionate about? Spend some time each day doing it. Photography. Sewing. Cooking. Reading. Blogging. It refreshes the mind.

– Learn something new
We’re all created with potentials. Talents. And we need to keep on exploring and developing them. Pick up a new language. Go for photography workshops. Learn how to cook certain foods.

– Hang out and befriend other positive-minded moms
Negative-minded friends keep you feeling down with self-pity. Positive ones encourage you to keep on moving forward despite life’s difficulties.

– Relax!
When things don’t quite go according to our plans, don’t get too stressed out about it. Learn to let go and be a little more ‘care free’.

– Shrug and smile
When kids are behaving badly, humour often helps in keeping our mind ‘cool’.

I may not make a joke out of a situation by saying something to the kids (eg. when one child is whining and crying, while the other is kicking a huge fuss about NOT wanting to put on his pants), but sometimes I just shake my head, smile, and just shrug, thinking how one day I’ll look back and remember such moments and laugh at their childishness, hehe.

– Regularly spend good twosome time with your spouse
If you can, do ask someone else (eg. family member) to babysit the kids for a few hours while you and your spouse spend some good two hours or so together. Catch up and talk about random things. Connect. Laugh. Do this regularly, like once a week, or once a fortnight.

For my case, we don’t have any families to help us out in Singapore, so our twosome time is after the kids have gone to bed. We’d chat, catch up, watch a DVD.

– Get out of the house everyday
Go to the nearest library.Β  Bring the kids out to the playground. Walk to the nearest neighbourhood supermarket. Basically, get outside the four walls of your home! Refresh your eyes and mind.

– Expose the kids to different activities
When kids are engaged in different things and are happy, we are less tense too. Some time ago I wrote a post on activity ideas, click HERE to check it out!

– Multitask

Though not always possible, try to do more than one thing at a time.

Go to the playground and while the kids play, read a book and relax on a nearby bench.

Plonk your dirty laundry into the washing machine, switch it on, boil some chicken soup for dinner (and cook some rice), play some music (CD) and do a little dance and sing-a-long with your kids while you sweep the floor at the same time. That’s five things happening at the same time!

– DVDs for kids
I’m quite particular when it comes to what the kids watch on TV or DVD. They don’t watch shows where there are fighting scenes like, The PowerPuff Girls or Ben 10 (and I do explain to them why).

But I do let them watch age-appropriate shows on TV or DVD, for like 60 – 90 mins, spread throughout the day. And it does give me that extra time to catch up on my work and other stuff.

– Relax over house matters
If you don’t have a live-in maid like me, don’t stress too much over the house being neat, tidy and clean all the time. And don’t push yourself to doing ‘everything’ in a day.

I sweep the floor everyday, and I mop once every three days. But I’m relaxed over stuff like ironing. So when the pile of clean laundry is pretty high, and I’m bogged down by other things, I leave it till later and not worry about it.

There are way MORE things that we can do other than what I’ve listed above.

And this is where I hope to hear from parents out there. What keeps YOU going? Please share in the comment section. I’d love to hear from you!


  • EKP Mommie says:

    Hi Leonny

    I chanced upon your blog when I was googling on how mommies can managed > 1 kids without a maid.

    I’m currently having a maid, but coz of her pride, when she did something wrong today and I scolded her, I insisted her to apologize which she end up doing it so unwillingly and later, she threatened me to transfer her away if i’m not happy with what she does for the past 4 mths here. Today, was in fact the first time I really scolded her. For all the silly mistakes she did, I’d usually nag at her or sometimes, will even tell her in jokingly manner. This maid do have some attitude problem, as she’s 1 yr older than me and is considered an experienced maid become we employer her 4 mths ago. Many times, I had to instruct her to call and inform me if she’s bringing my younger boy to buy some stuff. Many times, she failed to do so, and even she do call before she left the home, she’ll not call when she reached home. Told her before, I just needed to know she’s safely in/out of home esp she has my boy w her.

    I’ve juz stopped working last Monday as I could no longer work in that co as the boss was a real difficult person to work with. I’m comtemplating SAHM but really worried I can’t handle. My boys are 4 1/2 yo and younger one turning 3yo next month. I have an old doggie which was with me since a puppy, but now, he’s 13yo, with cataracts and can hardly see. So when we are out, we will return to find the kitchen totally messed up with his poo and pee. I had tried not having maid (transition period between change of maids) for almost a wk. I almost went crazy. Not because I can’t handle my boys, but coz the dog are always messing up the kitchen and I end up having to clean up, sanitize the kitchen and wash the floor rugs!

    My husband is always travelling, almost once every 3 to 4 wks. And plus, with the maid right now, he’s hardly helping me to take care of the kids. At most, he may help to feed them once a blue moon, or shower them. But when it comes to playing or teaching them, he hardly do that.

    I’m really tired of the corporate world, but then, if I dun work, and have a maid, it’ll become very financially straining. Without the maid, we can even send the younger boy to childcare. I really wanted to send him to childcare, so he can mix around and at the same time, learn something from school. But currently, it’s hard to do that as the current expenses are very high.

    I’m in a total dilemma right now and I apologize for the long post. Hope to be able to gain some views from you.

    Thanks thanks!

    • Leonny says:

      Hi EKP Mommie,

      Thanks for sharing … Am totally okay with the ‘long post’ too (So sorry though that it took me a while to reply your message)

      After reading what you wrote, here’re some of my personal thoughts yeah …

      – If I were you, these probably would be my considerations:

      >> Become a SAHM and do without the fulltime helper. Instead, engage part-time help once every week for 3-4 hours (eg. To do the ironing, overall cleaning, etc)

      >> Dog issue:
      Does your doggie roam freely in the kitchen? Would it be possible to have him ‘confined’ to a certain area in the kitchen instead? The toys, drink, etc will then be placed in this area as well. This way, the ‘poo and pee’ will be confined in that area only too, lessening the ‘load’ of work you need to do, eg. cleaning up messy kitchen, washing the floor rugs, etc (I’ve seen ‘metal fences’ meant for indoors and for dogs)

      If we’ve always had extra help (from a live-in helper), it’s not a surprise if we find things overwhelming when we suddenly don’t have one. Not a surprise too if hubby is used to having help and thus, not helping much with the kids (because usually extra help is there and sufficient anyway). I guess, it’s just a natural thing, and it ‘can’ change over time. Just need to get over the initial tough adjustment period?

      If you decide to do without the live-in domestic helper AND become a SAHM, then it’ll be great if you can decide on it together with your hubby (this way, you can share with him too how you’ll be needing his help around the house, how his help and involvement with the kids will be greatly appreciated, etc )

      Deciding to switch and have only one person working fulltime in the family is not an easy thing. To me, it needs to be agreed upon by both parties (hubby and wife), because they’ll both be the ones ‘riding the waves’ together. There’ll be ups and downs, but I can testify how it IS possible. Not without challenges or hardship though. (it trains us mentally, if you ask me =)

      (since beginning of this year when I was pregnant with no.3, hubby also travels a lot for work, ie. 3-4 days a week, every week …till today. Yes, it is tough, because that means I handle all 3 kids myself, etc … but as I shared earlier, it is possible, and having ‘trained’ the kids to be more independent and helpful around the house since they’re young sure has its benefits …which I’m reaping right now … =)

      Am not sure if what I share above helps at all. But I do hope you find a solution that works best for you … Being a SAHM is not an easy choice, but if you can make that choice and if it is a possible situation for you to be one, … then it will be one decision you’ll not regret. Just need to get over that initial adjustment period …

      All the best!

  • May says:

    Thanks Leonny, tx for sharing.

    I am also struggling to decide if I shld quit to look after my 2 gals, age 10 mths and 3 yrs. I am afraid I can’t cope. I hv so many problem engaging a realiable maid, so I tell myself utimately I hv to quit and look after myself one day. I hv mum to help me but we can’t always depend on parents. Life will be different with just one sole bread winner at home, worried if I can provide them as much as now.

    Agnes Goh, hi..i think we may be sharing the same problem right now..hope we can link up one day..


  • Leonny says:

    Agnes Goh:

    Welcome to my blog! Am so glad that you find the sharing and stories on this site useful to you. I understand that everyone has unique situations and the struggles of every family are different.

    I share quite a bit of posts on the topic of stay at home mom, and making choices, and how I personally felt being an actively involved parent to my kids. The search box is at the top right yeah!

    Do share your thoughts and views on other posts too … I’d love to hear from you.

    Thanks Agnes for sharing!

  • Leonny says:


    Oh you’re definitely not alone! Thanks for sharing yeah … and you know you’re always welcome to visit my blog and share your views anytime! πŸ™‚

  • Leonny says:


    I understand what you meant when you said you’re still adapting. It’s a big change in the daily routine and it’ll take time. I truly believe though that if we totally know ‘why’ we made that choice to begin with, the long-term benefits for the child and etc, … we’ll have the ‘drive’ to keep on going, though things do get tough at times.

    Do share more of your thoughts and stories here yeah … I’d love to hear from readers like you .. Thanks Sasha for sharing.

    PS: If you’re on FB, do join my Our Everyday Things FB Page yeah! I share daily inspiration and parenting posts there πŸ™‚

  • Agnes Goh says:

    Hi, i am a semi-SAHM. I’m still considering if I shld convert into full time, after gg thru’ all the hiccups of hiring a maid.. Err frankly, my main concern is about getting support from like minded mum, as many of my friend’s children are either with their in-laws, maids or childcare centres.. Can’t really find one who share the up n downs of parenting.. But, I am so thankful when I accidentally found ur blog!! I love reading ur sharings, they are v encouraging.. As for my decision on whether to go full swing on being a SAHM.. Pray that I will be convinced by HIM if this is really my calling.. Cheers!!

  • food-4tots says:

    I’m also a SAHM with one kid. Reading this post makes me feel that I’m not alone! Yay! I like the last point – relax over house matters. Work smart and not hard! I do spot cleaning everyday so I don’t need to follow a strict routine to clean my house.

  • Sasha says:

    Hi Leonny, you shared some really good ideas on activities with the kids. yes being a SAHM is not easy…I resigned to look after my special needs boy (19 months). Its been a month since I resigned from my job and I am still trying to adapt to it. I will definitely try out those activities you have done with your kids!

  • angela says:

    Hi Leonny,,

    yr blog did brighten up my days.. I just left my job and my girl is still in the childcare. My thoughts have been in the mess for quite awhile. i really want to spend times with my girl but i am very worry about not able to get it done. but after so much thoughts, i want to give it a try.. then to regret again in the future.. Thank you very much..

    mummy of 2 years old girl..

  • Leonny says:

    Yin :

    I just realise that I haven’t replied to your comment left in June .. so sorry about that! I read all comments as soon as they’re left, but I guess I must’ve missed out on replying some …

    Anyway … THANKS for sharing! SAHMs share similar situations and it’s really nice to hear other people’s sharings and comments! I hope my site can be a place where one gets to encourage another!

    Tricia :

    Thanks for sharing too Tricia … and welcome to my blog too (if you’re new πŸ™‚

    It’s never easy to hear other people’s discouraging comments … because we may somewhat get affected by them… But when we know ‘why’ we made that decision to be a fulltime parent in the first place, there will be no regrets … yes? πŸ™‚

  • Tricia says:

    Hi everyone. Glad to find like-minded mummies. My ex-colleagues with children called me a tai-tai just because I don’t go to work! Also commented they wouldn’t be able to take the boredom of staying alone with their kids all day! Got to be in our shoes to understand our ‘job’.

  • yin says:

    Hi Leonny

    This is a great blog! I too am a sahm just recently in april, i resigned from my hectic worklife to spend time with my boy, 2yrs old. It is really tough to get used to staying at home at 1st esp when my husband is a workaholic and frequently goes overseas to work. In addition, my friends and relatives keep on asking me when am i going back to work!

    it seems to me that in this time and era, SAHM is looked down upon. SO SAD… WHATS WRONG BEING A SAHM?? I do get depressed sometimes. But then again, when i get to be with my little boy, i feel like i am the blessed one. πŸ™‚

    I too agree with you strongly that we should never isolate ourselves. To all the SAHM out there, go out as often as possible! bring your little ones go swimming, get to know your neighbours children so that they can play together and for safety reasons (if u are like me- husband travels frequently this is really impt in case of an emergency your neighbour can really help u!), go to the library, supermarket, corridor, invite your friends / relatives to your house for dinner.

    And do your own things when your child is asleep, eg. paint your nails, read, have a bubble bath, eat ice cream, yoga, walk around naked (ok just joking), having ME time really keeps me sane. I do keep my own journal too. I think this really helps as i can pour all the fustrations into it.

    I too have no maid to do housework. Like you, i just try to keep the house reasonably clean. i only mop the floor on alternate days and if my husband has late meetings and not having dinner, I only cook one meal like stew or soup and have it for lunch & dinner. saves time and I can stay slim too!

  • Leonny says:

    Nuniek Tirta:

    Hello hellooo … Met kenal juga!! πŸ˜€

    Thanks for dropping by my site and sharing your thoughts on the topic.

    Being a fulltime mommy sure is not easy … (I too am facing heaps of challenges lately with Vai’s Terrible Two days, it can be very draining to the mind and emotions … )

    And hey you’re coming to Singapore in two weeks time ? That’s wonderful!

    Right now I’m not sure if I’ll be in town then because we might plan for a quick getaway with friends.

    Anyway … do keep in touch ya. And perhaps we DO get to meet up when you come to Singapore!

    I love meeting up new friends πŸ™‚

    PS: You have an online shop too ? Care to share the URL ? πŸ™‚

  • nuniek tirta says:

    hi leony, salam kenal πŸ™‚

    i stumbled upon ur post on ayahbunda milist a while ago about places to visit in singapore, then it leads me to ur blog. and i can say wow, thanks God i found ur blog! because it’s so inspiring and refreshing… reading d posts, looking at d beautiful photos…

    im also a SAHM mom with two kids, 2,5y & 1y. yes it’s so tiring handling them alone, been there done that for more than a month. i was frustated in the first time, i cried when the kids were crying. though my condition was better then urs : i got part time maid who comes everyday, i got employee for my online shop, i have my mom in law in the neighbourhood and my parents in town… but still, i feel stressed out esp. when the kids was not behaving well, and feel that im not capable of handling them ALONE.

    i do agree with all ur points above to keep us sane, with additions: do have time for pampering urself πŸ™‚ i myself prefer to spend some time in salon, whether for creambath, spa, menicure-pedicure, etc. it really helps me to keep sane. let the hubby take care of the kids for a couple of hours, hehehe…

    btw, im about to visit singapore this 22-24 may with my hubby. is there any chance i can meet u there? would love to see u and ur kids, if possible…

    keep on posting, keep on inspiring!

  • Leonny says:

    Pearlyn :

    “At the end of the day, it is back to, I’m a SAHM because I believe it’s my role to be my child’s main caregiver and the value of it all”

    Well said! … THANKS for sharing!


    Sammi :

    Hi Sam! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this.

    I agree with you that when you have young kids to care for, plus tonnes of other things to do, getting a good rest does seem impossible.

    I too hardly ever nap (or get a good long sleep at night) because when the kids are asleep, that’s when I catch up with work and other things with ‘zero interruption’.

    [When I’m dead tired, I try to cat nap for some 20mins though – joining the kids, before I get back to work. To me, it does help refresh my mind a bit πŸ™‚ ]

    As for things being ‘easier said than done’ … true. ‘Ideals’ are too often easier said than done when compared to ‘reality’ yah …

    Though I struggle to juggle everything on my plate everyday … with God’s help so far I personally practise what I wrote in the post though πŸ™‚

  • Leonny says:

    Astrid :

    Thanks for sharing too ya!! And thanks for reminding too that yes we moms need to be ‘filled’ with God’s Word first, in order for us to be able to share ‘overflowingly’ to our kids!


    Asianmommy :

    Thanks for sharing!

    For my case, it’s not quite possible to have a ‘girls day out’, so what helps is that when our family is out and about with friends (and their family), my hubby sometimes ‘looks after’ the kids, while I freely chat with the moms πŸ™‚ Equally refreshing, given the limitations I have πŸ™‚


    Ed :

    Hi there! πŸ™‚ Thanks for dropping a note and sharing! I always treasure views and comments from daddies, like yourself πŸ™‚

    And yes, writing a blog can help and refresh the mind ya ( I guess it’s because it takes away our mind from the pressure of our daily routine?)

  • Leonny says:

    Kareen :

    Thanks for sharing too ya… πŸ™‚


    kkf :

    Thanks always πŸ™‚


    szeyi :

    Oh so you recently became a fulltime mommy! Wishing you all the best in the journey ahead ya … Challenging yet rewarding (though at times the rewards may not be that visible ‘right now’ πŸ™‚


    Merryn :

    Yes writing and sharing it in a blog helps refresh the mind, I think πŸ™‚

  • Pearlyn says:

    Hi Leonny
    Just want to add something about going back to the fundamentals…that is asking ourselves, why are we SAHMs in the first place?

    Once we are clear about that, it makes it easier to think long term and look beyond the day-to-day routine, be it a boring or tiring one.

    Another thing I’ve learnt is to stop bothering about what other people say…actually I’m still learning.

    In this very practical world, it is always about which is the most financially sound decision. So just when you are wondering to yourself why you are washing puke-soiled clothings, you may recall what somebody have said about wasting your education.

    Forget about comparing ourselves to working mothers, forget the whole debate about who has it worse.

    At the end of the day, it is back to, I’m a SAHM because I believe it’s my role to be my child’s main caregiver and the value of it all.

  • Leonny says:

    Sandra :

    I agree with you… Acknowledging and accepting that things sometimes are just ‘too much to handle’ is good…because we then accept the fact that we are not perfect and will never be, even though we do try our best …


    Andrea :

    Thanks for sharing, Andrea!

    I agree how ‘me-time’ is sooo important too! For those who can make arrangements with their hubby and family members to help and babysit the kids, I think they really should make time for ‘me time’.

    For my case however, ‘uninterrupted me-time’ is more possible when the kids are asleep (eg. at night) and I’m alone doing what I’m passionate about, eg. sharing through my blog or reading . So when that happens, it sort of has to ‘compensate’ my twosome-time with hubby when i have my ‘me-time’ at home.

    Thing is, when the kids are asleep I use that time to catch up on work and lots of other stuff too. So even getting ‘me-time’ is not that simple.

    As for ‘rest’, …. how i would love to get more of that πŸ™‚ I would love to get ‘lots of rest’, but with so much things to do and so little time, getting a relaxing 8 hours of sleeptime seems ‘nearly impossible’.

    So what I do at times – when I’m really tired – is I catch some 20-30mins nap in the afternoon when my kids nap too. It does help and refresh me a bit. Before I get up and get back to work, I mean πŸ™‚

  • sammi says:

    The Andrea above probably has amnesia as to how much time you can have for yourself with younger ones. I’ve not had a chance to nap in the last 2 years (from pregnant – unable, to now with 8mth old and too bz). Ah, yes, if my youngest was 10years old, I’d be blowing the same trumpet.

    Anyway, Leonny – all you mentioned….it’s easier said than done.

    BTDT – 15, 12, 10yrs, 8mths.

  • ED says:

    Interesting post!

    I am quite busy at work, so i would love to have more time with the kids as well!

    I agree with Merryn that blogging helps!

    It keeps every memory fresh and entertaining as well!

  • Asianmommy says:

    Great points! I agree that you need to carve out time for yourself, too. Make sure that you have your own passions to fulfill. & Get together with your girlfriends to meet for coffee or dessert or a movie when you can.

  • astrid says:

    Hi Le, great tips there!

    Kalo gw selalu prinsip nya, kalo kita ‘kosong’ (ga mau diisi oleh Firman Tuhan), nah kita ga bakal bisa jd berkat bagi anak2 kita. Itu yg gw alamin sndr. Tp kaloe kita mau belajar, dan diisi oleh buku, kotbah, kaset seminar.. Kita jd ‘overflowing’ dan bisa bagi berkat ke anak2.

    Dulu gw pelarian nya ke shopping (online or at the malls with the kids), tp tetep aja tuh… jenuh. Tp stlh merubah lifestyle dan pikiran utk disiplin baca buku… it helps a whole lot!

    Hehee… Jd curhat. πŸ˜‰

  • Merryn says:

    i think blogging pretty much helps.. like a theraphy.. but after some time, got addicted and pretty much create havoc in da system! πŸ˜€

  • szeyi says:

    ya, truely agree… really needs lots of determination…
    i just become one 2 weeks ago, and am now coping.
    i really need to improve to learn to relax on hsechore matter cos i am a clean FREAK! this really bothers me alot man.

    but well, tks for sharing! is nice of u πŸ˜‰

  • kareen says:

    Hi Leonny

    kareen here πŸ™‚ Really love reading your blog.. I always get to learn so much things from your blog. Thank you so much for sharing this post on the SAHM.. thou I am a full time working mom. You hv highlighted a few good pointers. such as the β€œShrug & Smile” as well as β€œGood twosome time”. I must really improve on these..

    Hope to meet up with you someday πŸ™‚


  • Andrea says:

    Great post!

    I’d like to add, though:

    Spend time with yourself! All by yourself. “Me” time is critical to staying sane no matter what the age of your children are. We need to take time to let our mind wander and not have a timeline or anyone needing us or forcing the direction of our next step. Even if just for an hour or two here and there. A weekend away is incredible, although usually unrealistic when the kids are younger. Having a supportive husband or network of those positive friends you mentioned is beneficial to making this work out.

    Along with that is to get plenty of rest. If we are not rested, we get worn down and often depressed and are not of much use to our family or ourselves. Sleep should not be considered a luxury but rather a necessity and a high priority.

    With three children, 18, 16 and 10, I’ve learned alot of this the hard way.

  • Sandra says:

    i think you pretty much covered it – i would add that it is ok to feel overwhelmed & throw your hands up in sheer tireness, exhaustion & frustration – don’t feel guilty – you need to express such emotions otherwise it will eat you up – i know – been there.
    i really need to do more “Shrug & Smile” as well as “Good twosome time”. Thanks for the reminder πŸ˜‰

1 Pingbacks »

Leave a comment!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.

CommentLuv badge