14 January 2012, by Mandy Loh
Almost exactly a year ago, our social group of friends enjoyed a fantastic holiday in Bintan. Last weekend, we attempted to recreate the experience, taking a similar trip with more or less the same group of friends.
Besides the logistical nightmare of hauling our bags, various baby necessities AND our food supplies across the sea, everything else went very well. The weather held up beautifully, with sunny, breezy days, allowing us plenty of opportunities to dip in our villa’s private pool and chill out at the deck.
As per last year, all that was on the agenda for our holiday was fun and relaxation together with good friends. At that time, both Yilin and I were pregnant, so we took it easy and spent our days just resting, watching DVDs and chatting.
This year, although the PLAN was to do the same, Cristan and Coco obviously thought otherwise!
As I’ve come to learn, a holiday with baby merely means a change of geography – as all daily activities remain the same! With a 6+ month-old baby in tow, there was hardly much time to relax! Throughout the day, I would still be nursing, changing diapers, playing with Cristan or cuddling him to sleep. The only respite from never-ending activities was Cristan’s occasional half-hour naps. My my, what a difference a year makes!
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining, as we definitely had a great time. It was just not as relaxing and restful as we had hoped.
Nevertheless, I’m still so glad to have been able to chill out with our friends for an entire weekend, especially since it has been slightly harder to meet up nowadays. We even managed to do a BBQ on one of the evenings!
It was awesome having a private pool at our backyard, making it extremely convenient to bring our babies swimming!
It was nice having DVD nights every evening, even though I never managed to finish an entire show as Cristan would cry for milk about an hour into the movie!
It was particularly great to enjoy some family bonding time as we left behind the stresses of daily life and work (the positive effect of not having internet access for a weekend!)
Much to my amusement, however, I found the restful “holiday” I was hoping for, after our return to Singapore! Cristan and I went to stay with my parents for the week, as Tim had to go overseas for work. During our stay, Cristan’s doting grandparents were eager and more than happy to play with him throughout the day, and if they were busy, their domestic helper was a great babysitter as well.
Not surprisingly, I thoroughly enjoyed staying over at my parents’ place, affording me with some valuable me-time. I even managed to do some speed shopping for new clothes for CNY! Besides, staying over gives Cristan wonderful opportunities to bond with his grandparents more closely too. Win-win I say!
So, what do you know? Holidays don’t always mean having to go overseas after all!