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Year-end thoughts 2019

Year-end thoughts 2019 Posted on 1 January, 2020Leave a comment

It didn’t feel that long ago that I sat down to put together reflections for 2018 which marked our move to Hong Kong. Twenty-nineteen is our first full year in the city – with its ups and downs – and these are my top 10 events:

  1. Completing my upgrade assessment for my PhD at UCL in January. It looks at the postpartum practices of mothers across rural and urban households in Mainland China. Undertaking this project is also part of the reason for our relocation to this part of the world. This was the first milestone which paves the way of my fieldwork to be commenced this year. I wrote a blog entry for the Institute for Global Health about it here.
  2. Spending our first Chinese New Year in Hong Kong as a family, including a lion dance along the beach front!
  3. Marking the better half’s grand 40th! And a decade since we met.
  4. Joining Taste Ed, the UK charity which works with schools to champion sensory food education, on its advisory panel. I am very honoured to be invited by Bee Wilson, who chairs the organisation, and look forward to seeing it implemented in some of the schools in Hong Kong.
  5. Welcoming baby Ingrid to our family in March. Now at nine months, she is actively crawling and climbing up the stairs! Being a second time mum makes me appreciate how every baby is truly different. Ingrid sleeps and eats in a whole different pattern to Audrey at the same age. At 5 and a half years apart, raising Ingrid brings back memories of Audrey as a baby but it feels like doing it all over again. But I also know how quick this phase will soon pass too.
  6. Joining The New Luncher as their Head of Nutrition overlooking menu design and communicating messages about food and nutrition to parents, families and carers in Hong Kong and Singapore. I contribute regularly to their blog which could be found here.
  7. Being back on Instagram after a while! Doing it for work is a rather new venture for me, with so much to learn to engage with fellow grammers. Nonetheless, I found it a nice way to organise my ‘make and eat’ as a platform to share everyday family recipes and my stories about food.
  8. Witnessing city-wide protests which have crippled many aspects of the city. So many have been saddened by the events and the level of violence ensued. The extent of emotional damage to the city of Hong Kong will take a long time to heal, and bridging the underpinning social disparities is likely to be the only way to mend this hung situation between the government and its people.
  9. Seeing Audrey settling into her new primary school. It’s been remarkable to see her transitioning from London to a local Chinese-speaking-only Hong Kong environment, adapting to new surroundings and building new relationships. The school curriculum is known to be relentless when it comes to the range and depth of the subjects, especially Math and the Chinese language. So everyday after school it often feels a little hectic making sure homework is done, hopefully not with too much screaming involved. The most important of all I think is to be able to offer the thinking space for children and teach them the tools to solve problems. It’s easier said than done, but we do live and learn as parents.
  10. Continuing project work big and small which I am truly thankful for to pave for a busy year ahead!

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