The phrase I

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Hello! - PENE­LOPE CHAN, ED­I­TOR PS. Thanks for all your lovely let­ters. E-mail us at magsim­ply­her@sph.com.sg or write to us at 82 Gent­ing Lane, Me­dia Cen­tre Level 7, S(349567), and keep send­ing in your won­der­ful ideas. CON­NECT WITH US AT: face­book.com/sim­ply­hersi

use most of­ten as a mum is “Hurry up!”. I prob­a­bly say it more times in a day than I say “I love you” or “Good job!” to my three kids.

You may have read a blog post mak­ing its rounds on Face­book, called The Day I Stopped Say­ing “Hurry Up”. The blog­ger, Rachel Macy Stafford, the au­thor of www.hands­freemama.com, wrote about how her chil­dren were a wake-up call to her to live life at a slower pace – their pace. She talks about her “hur­ried ex­is­tence”, her Type A per­son­al­ity, her “fren­zied soul”, and hav­ing a child who would con­stantly “de­vi­ate from my mas­ter sched­ule”.

I have a child like that, too. A dreamy, happy-go-lucky sweet­heart who lives life on a dif­fer­ent sched­ule from our har­ried world. When I’m ready to leave the house (al­ready late, of course), she de­cides it’s time to pack a snack to take along. When all I want is to get from Point A to Point B, she is, lit­er­ally, stop­ping to ad­mire the flow­ers along the way.

In her post, Rachel wrote that her care­free child was a gift to her tasko­ri­ented per­son­al­ity. That struck a chord with me. I re­alised that my daugh­ter, too, is a con­stant – and needed – bal­ance in my life of ex­tremes.

When I’m ready to hit warp speed, she’s my re­minder that the sweet things in life are whizzing by. Things like stop­ping to ca­ress a mi­mosa plant we spot, and to gig­gle when the leaves close upon con­tact. When my first in­stinct is to fo­cus on the end point, she shows me that tak­ing the me­an­der­ing route can make a task so much more en­joy­able.

I need to slow down when I’m with my kids, to en­joy our time to­gether. The so­lu­tion: find ways to do other things more quickly, to free up my time.

To help har­ried mums do that, turn to our story on page 47, where we have ad­vice on how to do ev­ery­thing faster – from 20-minute recipes to the most de­li­cious frozen meals, quick de­clut­ter­ing tips, how to cut down on clothes-shop­ping time, and more. Once you’ve mas­tered th­ese short­cuts, you’ll see how much ex­tra time you have, to take care of the things that re­ally mat­ter.

We’re help­ing you in other ways, too. First, with the 26 win­ners of our Smart Shop­per Clean Home He­roes 2014 – gad­gets and clean­ing prod­ucts for ev­ery sur­face in your home, from floors, to walls, sinks, win­dows and other ar­eas (pg 114). Then turn to page 92 for re­union din­ner recipes from chefs.

The Sim­ply Her team also tasted a slew of sump­tu­ous pen cai (pg 102), and Chi­nese New Year good­ies with a mod­ern twist (pg 98) – so you know the best ones to buy this year. From all of us, have a won­der­ful 2014 and a pros­per­ous Year of the Horse.

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