#amonthoffaves2016 Best Changes Made This Year


A Month of Faves is hosted by AndiTanya and Tamara

Best Changes Made This Year

– to your Day / Life / Routines / Blog / Habits

The Oral-B electric toothbrush

Is it weird that I’m starting with oral hygiene?

Anyway, this is a fantastic electric toothbrush! I used the Sonicare electric toothbrushes for a few years but switched early in the year to the Oral-B (whatever version that they sell at Costco). And it has seriously helped me remove all the tea stains on my teeth!

I drink tea every day, black tea in the morning, maybe a cup of coffee if I need the extra caffeine,green tea after lunch. Tea apparently discolours teeth far worse than coffee does. Luckily it was only the back of my front teeth. It was only during my twice-yearly dentist visits that these tea stains could be removed thoroughly. But now with the Sonicare, even my dentist marveled at how stain-free my teeth are. Definitely one good change there!


When we bought our house from the builder six years, the backyard was left to us to do up. We didn’t have much money (especially since we spent a lot of it on the house!) and didn’t have any clue what to do with our backyard. In the end we got someone to come in and level the place out, put in some stamped concrete and lots of wood chips to cover the rest of the space. It wasn’t ideal so this year we finally decided that we would get someone to come in and tile up a path to lead to the sideyard, put in a planter and extend our back fence upwards. And so with my new planter, the kids and I have been planting things! We tried growing from seed: sunflowers, carrots, green beans and these cute “Easter egg” radishes. And from little plants: jalapeños, yellow tomatoes, lavender. The carrots were a failure but we had some gorgeous sunflowers (including some beautiful dark red and dark purple ones), ate plenty of our homegrown green beans, tomatoes and radishes! I’ve put in some tulip bulbs and I’m hopeful for spring! Even the husband, who is completely uninterested in the gardening part, kept remarking that it’s so nice to come out to the backyard now. We definitely spent more time in the backyard this summer than in previous years.

Blog name

I mentioned this earlier but I’m very glad I decided to spend some money and buy myself this domain name. Sure I’m still using the free wordpress.com hosting but I felt like my blog had outgrown its old name and I think this one just suits it so much better!

 The kids

Now that my kids are five and three, they have been playing together a lot more. I mean, they have always played together and been best buddies, I think this year their playtime has been more coordinated, more fun. The boys also both started swimming classes this year, the 3yo just started gongfu classes at his preschool, and the 5yo piano class. Then there’s all the school stuff – the 5yo has homework from school (he’s in a Mandarin immersion programme so there’s not only English, Math also practicing writing and recognizing Chinese characters) and the 3yo doesn’t have homework but I’m trying to get him to write and read. So every evening I am completely drained. That’s obviously not a good change for me… (!).

As a parent I cannot help but wonder, in a typical fashion, (1) am I doing enough for them? (2) am I doing too much?


  1. LOVE your sunflower pic! 🙂 I grew some sunflowers by accident this year (The birds dropped sunflower seeds on the ground and then boom- I had plants!)

    I also took the plunge and bought my domain name last year. Still on free wordpress, but I like that by buying my domain it’s given me options to consider moving to a self-hosting, etc.


  2. Oral hygiene is important! As for kids and activities, I think it all depends on you, your kids, and your family. Right now, it seems to be working so not too much. But if you or they start to feel like it’s too much, you know it’s time to make a change.

    Your yard sounds lovely.


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