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Gong Xi Fa Cai from Amber Chia and Little Ashton

by Amber Chia
Posted on 23 January 2014

I just changed my hairstyle because I signed up with Guess as their ambassador. I love my new look! It is so easy to care for and saves me a lot of time. Besides, I was bored with long hair as I have had it for over 25 years. The best part is my new hairstyle takes years off my face – I look much younger now. grin I saved my cut hair so that I can donate it to a charitable cause. I am waiting for the right charity campaign to come along. It is more meaningful donating it than making it into a wig for myself. I am not a wig person anyway

I was with Ashton in Korea last week. It was too cold there for Ashton. Temperatures were below 10 degrees Centigrade! Ashton developed a runny nose and cough due to the cold outdoors and dry air from the heating when we were indoors. Fortunately, he recovered quickly when we came home.


We did not do much in Korea because we found it too cold outside. We attended some events and went for short walks. Most of the time, we snuggled in bed in the hotel and watched movies. We enjoyed the quality time spent together though. I asked Ashton which country he liked and he replied, “Japan” without any hesitation. It was spring when we were in Japan. The weather was perfect for touring.


I have been a full-time mommy for a month because my nanny/maid went home for the New Year. Honestly, it was not easy taking care of Ashton all on my own. I lost some weight at the end of the month.  I enjoyed the exclusive time we had together though. When my nanny returned, Ashton still preferred my company and care. It is a wonderful feeling when your child asks for you and you know you are the one he loves most.

Ashton started attending Kuen Cheng Kindergarten, remember the Chinese kindergarten that I spoke about?  I stayed with him for the entire first day, half of the second day and only send and fetch him back on the third day. He cried, “I don’t want to go to the new school” for the first two days despite my reassurance that he would make many new friends. True to my words, he made new friends by the third day and enjoys going to the kindergarten now. He has become more independent. He takes the school bus and carries his own school bag. I only see that he gets on the school bus safely in the morning. It is much easier for me too. I can be more flexible with my time. For the past two years, I have been rushing here and there, trying to send and fetch him to and from play school on time in between my work appointments.


My free spirited little darling will take some time adjusting to the new kindergarten. They are stricter and he has to learn to follow rules. I think it is good for him to learn to be more disciplined in everything. I, like all mothers find it hard to be tough with my kid but discipline is necessary. It helps my little Ashton learn self-control and good behaviour.  Discipline prepares our children to live happily in society.

For instance, when I tell him off for messing up the floor and asked, “Why did you mess up the floor? Who is going to clean up?”, he will reply quickly, “Mommy, you can ask Aunty Grace (our nanny) to clean up the floor.” I do insist that he cleans up, “No, you messed up the floor, you cannot ask the maid to clean up the floor. You have to clean up the floor yourself.” He will still argue, “I don’t know how to clean up by myself.” In the end, I will have to do it together with him because he will ask me to help him.


Ashton will also be learning a new language, Chinese/Mandarin in the kindergarten. I believe that he will be thankful to me for giving him the opportunity to learn another language when he grows up. I look forward to the day when he can talk to me in Chinese and I think that day is not very far off. Kids these days are amazing. They learn 10 times faster than we did when we were their age.

Motherhood keeps my brain cells on their toes. Ashton is always questioning me.  I cannot just tell him that he can’t do certain things. I have to give him a valid reason. For instance when I tell him not to touch hot drinks, I don’t get away with “You are a small kid. You will get hurt if you touch it”. I get asked, “Why Mommy touch, I cannot touch?”.  If I tell him, “Mommy says cannot means cannot”,  he will argue, “Why I cannot take? You give me no reason”. Some nights when I want him to sleep early, I say to him, “Ashton, what is the time now? You have to go to bed.” Almost instantly, I will get his rejoinder, “It is only nine o’clock Mommy!”

I have a lot of funny moments with Ashton too. The other day when the nurse at the clinic told him not to press the bell because he was playing with it, he told her, “I cannot off it. I press to call you to off it. I press because I don’t know how to off it.” I tell him bed time stories every night and I tell the same stories sometimes in a different way. If I missed out something, he will remind me, “Mommy, you forgot to tell me this…”  Oh, motherhood can be such fun!

My adorable son makes friends everywhere he goes. I usually park him in a corner whilst I shop and he would have made many friends by the time I return.  It happens all the time! For example, I sat him in a chair in a restaurant when I needed to have some fittings done before we went to Korea. When I came back after less than 10 minutes, he had already befriended all the people who were in the restaurant. They were playing with him and feeding him with cake and orange juice. I can’t imagine how he can make 15 friends like in 15 minutes and those were all adults. My little boy is quite a guy. When he is bored, he can walk up to a girl and tell her she is beautiful. The girl will be so enchanted and start playing with him. Then he will turn around and asked, “Can I have some cake please?” or “I want some water, I am so thirsty.”  I get to know all this from asking his “new friends”.


My little boy can be so sweet sometimes. He can tell us out of the blue, “Mommy, Daddy I love you guys!” He always like to play the hero these days to protect Mommy.

Ashton is growing up very fast. He is only 3 1/2 years old but he wears shoes for 4 to 5 years old. We were in Skechers to buy some new sports shoes and he wanted a pair too. “Mommy, I want new shoes because these are so soft and very comfortable and they are different”, he goes when I told him he has too many shoes already. My biggest challenge in motherhood is saying NO to Ashton. What makes things more difficult is that he is a very good negotiator. Once when I refused to buy him a toy, he sweet-talked “I will give you 10 kisses Mommy and I no mop mop!” He wipes his lips you know after kissing me on the lips. Result? I could not resist buying him the toy just to see if he carries out his promise. I am worried about his “spending power” at his young age. He knows what brands he wants. He is too familiar with brand names like Skechers, Adidas, etc. I am like, “Oh NO, I don’t even know what Skechers and Adidas are when I was 3 ½!”


The positive side however is it saves me the task of choosing things for him. He picks what he likes himself. Even in the hypermarket, Ashton picks his own drinks and puts them into the shopping trolley.

I can’t wait for Chinese New Year! I just launched a new fashion collection with Melinda Looi. It is called MLxAC. I am really honoured and happy to have a friend and partner like Melinda to help me create my very own fashion brand. Ashton and my husband helped me out with the fashion shoot for the collection. I have always wanted to have matching outfits for Ashton, my husband and myself and this collection is what it is all about.  The clothes are modern and contemporary with a Chinese New Year element. They can be worn during Chinese New Year and well after Chinese New Year too. I saved a lot in money and time this Chinese New Year. I just get all our clothes from MLxAC.


We will spend the first two days of Chinese New Year with my in-laws and fly back to Tawau, Sabah to visit my parents. We will be in Tawau for four days, spending quality time with my parents. My mom misses Ashton a lot.  She talks to Ashton on Skype frequently and can’t wait to see him.

Ashton,  my husband and I would like to wish everyone A Very Happy Chinese New Year, Gong Xi Fa Cai and if you haven’t got your Chinese New Year clothes yet, you can log in to our website at MLxAC to get your outfits for CNY as well.


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