Category Archives: Major Learning Project

Journey to Home Organization: Learning Summary

In EC&I 831, Social Media and Open Education, we were asked to embark on a major learning project that would entail acquiring new skills. We were encouraged to find online resources, as well as personal and in print, to help us along the way. I had thought of many different skills I could learn including sewing, yoga, and meditation. However, there was another important skill that I needed to develop and hone. I needed to organize my home with the view to living a more purposeful and mindful life in a very materialistic culture. My reading on the subject of disorganization and overabundance of stuff confirmed my suspicion that it can affect decision making, increase stress, and negatively impact the environment.

As I explain in my first post, I set out to create sustainable organizational systems and processes to create an efficient and healthy household while involving my toddler and preschooler and doing so with the least environmental impact.

In my second post, I share how overwhelmed I was with the plethora of resources online, and in print, to help a person become more organized. After some study, I was able to take away what I found to be most helpful in my journey. Including the questions to help decide what to keep, toss, donate, or sell.

Here are my top five takeaways I have learned throughout my journey:

Takeaway #1: Get connected!

My success this semester in getting more organized was connecting with like-minded Youtubers to keep me motivated and accountable. I loved Cassandra from Clutterbug and Kathryn from Do it on a Dime. What was especially helpful was Clutterbug’s Facebook page specifically for her followers to swap advice by posting photos of their own hot messes or reorganized spaces. This group was closed, which means posts are not shared on a member’s main social media feed. I appreciated this separation.

Takeaway #2: Declutter

I quickly learned that before you can become organized, you must let go of the things in your home that no longer serve a purpose. Items that no longer serve you will only take up valuable real estate. I followed Clutterbug’s 30-day declutter challenge on her Facebook page in October as described in my third post. It was only 15 minutes per day in various areas of my home. The best part of following along was posting photos of my progress. Also, I was able to get some great tips on how I could upcycle or repurpose some of my items. When decluttering a space, I found categorizing the items into bins labeled keep, donate, toss, sell and relocate. It is amazing how many items you will find in your bedroom closet that belong in the kitchen. Especially if you have kids who like to wander off with things.

At this point, I also started working on my do it yourself (DIY) skills by installing a garbage can under my kitchen sink. Youtube was helpful in navigating the features of my cordless drill. The old school illustrated instructions that came with the garbage can were very helpful in this DIY project. Although the instructions said it would only take 15 minutes, I believe it took me over an hour!

Takeaway #3: Recruit household members in organizing efforts

When I was organizing my clothes closet I didn’t expect my husband to tackle his clothes as well, but he was bitten by the decluttering bug. He was even motivated to reorganize his office space!

My little ones were excited when I moved their dishes to a cupboard they can reach and therefore help to set the table or put away when clean. In my fourth post, I learned the value of involving my little ones in helping unload the dishwasher. My son was able to work on his problem-solving and fine motor skills while trying to get the utensils out of the top rack. Recognizing the need to encourage my children to become more self-sufficient I also implemented a system in our front entryway they could use to store their outerwear.

In my fifth post, I take you on a tour of how I organized this space, including hanging a shelf for the first time. The tutorial I viewed on Youtube was helpful – to a point. I learned that context matters. This is also where I discovered that math is an integral part of placing a shelf on a wall correctly.

Takeaway #4: Designate a space for everything

This has been my biggest challenge in getting organized. With four people living in my household there seems to be many things that do not have a designated space – otherwise known as homeless! These items left in the open, or placed haphazardly, can suddenly sprout legs, or with the help of your little ones, even your furbabies, be transported to obscure places.

I realized early in my learning journey that items needed a designated space to not only prevent them from walking off but to make sure that they could be found easily. It was in my sixth post I share how disorganized my master bedroom closet had become. It was time to tackle it! In this space, I installed an ironing board hanger, created designated bins, and paired down my wardrobe. I found it overwhelming at first, but I had an opportunity to reflect on our culture of thinness and the impact on a mother’s body image. I also realized it takes courage to be vulnerable and share our imperfect lives on social media, but at the end of the day, this vulnerability leads to a connection with others.

I video documented my learning adventure demonstrating my ability to install the install the ironing board hanger. It wasn’t as easy as I first thought! I also give a video tour of my reorganized closet here.

Tip #5: Labels, Labels, Labels

Since my new mantra is “a place for everything and everything in its place,” I have found the suggestion of Clutterbug to label bins or baskets a key element in getting and staying organized. Before labels, a bin could house anything I wanted….. and anything anyone else wanted as well. This created chaos and the bins just contained random stuff. With a label, it is can only house one thing….. whatever the bin says is in it!

In my eighth post, I share how I reorganized my daughter’s closet. I allocated labeled bins for her clothes, toys, and accessories and placed them on the Rubbermaid FastTrack system I installed. I am becoming more and more comfortable sharing my projects on social media as I demonstrate in the closet video tour here:

With the development of my DIY skills, I am also starting to become more comfortable with the math involved to install shelves. However, I am still not the best at finding studs, which I thought would be the easiest part. Balancing the tools, the vertical standards, and a level is very tricky when doing a DIY project like this alone. Interestingly, putting the brackets in the verticals was also tricky!

These are the top five takeaways that have assisted me in becoming more organized. Decluttering really set me on my path to efficiently organize what was left. The major areas that I tackled this semester were the kitchen, entryway, my and my daughter’s closets. These areas are so easy to keep organized now!

Thoughts Regarding Online Learning Resources

I have come to appreciate the value of learning online even more as a result of this learning project. So many tutorials on Youtube and mommy bloggers were instrumental in my learning journey. However, the topics we spoke about in class helped me to take a critical view of the sources I used. In my seventh post,  I contemplated whether the home organization tips and tricks offered by the mommy bloggers I followed was less valuable if their messages were sponsored by corporations. I concluded that being aware of this possibility was enough to allow me to be a critical consumer of the advice given.

In my fifth post, I also talked about the dark side of sharing on social media. During Clutterbug’s declutter challenge she encouraged us to post on her Facebook page before and after photos of what we accomplished. Unfortunately, not all of her followers were encouraging. In fact, I witnessed the negative effects of trolls.  One post, in particular, was met by a very negative comment. My dismay of this shadow cast on our community was quickly lifted when 300+ positive comments were posted to counteract the negative one.

Although my official major learning project has come to end, my learning journey has not. With my newfound DIY and organizational skills, I am ready to tackle the other closets in my house and start labeling more bins!

Thank you all for your encouraging comments and support! Have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy your break.

Learning Chinese – Wrap up

My objective in learning Cantonese is that because next Summer, I will have a vacation in Hongkong where Cantonese is the main language, so being able to speak basic Cantonese for travelling purpose is what I attempt in this learning project.

During the last couples of month, I have shared with you guys the total of 7 parts of my learning project. I shared my parts in weekly basis:

Part 1: I shared my initial plan and some reasons why I chose to learn Cantonese Chinese. In this part, I identified several resources and learning network that could possibly help me learn Cantonese.

Part 2: My progress on learning Cantonese pronunciation and tones. I used Memrise as a main interactive learning tools to help me learn Cantonese pronunciation and tones.

Part 3: I documented my visit to the Confucius institute at U of R to learn of Chinese culture, Chinese cultural programs and activities that offered here, and how I found my learning buddy.

Part 4: I learned Cantonese numbers and dates. I practiced by reading out loud randomly dates from the calendar and numbers from the bingo sheets.

Part 5: I learned Cantonese greeting phrases.

Part 6: I learned how to tell directions in Cantonese.

Part 7: As I was searching for learning resources, I could see digital library and online learning resources were a big help in my learning project. However, this also had me reflect on the role of traditional library, whether the traditional library is dying because digital library and online resources are getting dominant. Also in this part, I showed to you guys some of the Cantonese grammar books that I borrowed from the library. These books would help me as I will continue my Cantonese learning after the course ended.

I found the online resources to learn Cantonese are much less than Mandarin. Even when I tried to search on several OERs, I couldn’t find any resources that really help. My subjective opinion is that OERs may mostly serve the mainstream knowledge and the subjects on some OERs that I visited need to be more varied.

I also found lots of sources on the Internet but most of them were user-created content sites and I kinda doubted about the correctness and validity of the things people posted on those sites. My solution was for one aspect of learning Cantonese, I compared between different sources of information to filter what seems to be the most reliable source that I can learn from.

Youtube was really helpful, I followed several Youtubers who had very interesting videos that teach Cantonese.

I also connected to a few Cantonese teaching Twitters.

There are a lot of aspect in learning a language. There are not just numbers, dates, tones, pronunciations, but a lot more that I didn’t have a chance to write blogs about. I decided to only document the aspects in learning Cantonese which I think most important in relation with my learning objective.

During my learning project, I was so grateful because I received lots of support from my classmates, through the comments, they gave me lots of opinions and useful ideas. Thank you all for that.

I also would like to thank professor Dr. Alec Couros for the feedback and guidance. You set a very clear expectation and objective for the major learning assignment of the EC&I 831 and that help guide me in successfully completing my learning project.

I will keep learning Cantonese and I will try to maintain this blog as a way to connect with friends and other educators.





Learning Chinese (part 7): The roles of the digital library and online education resources versus traditional library.

EC&I 831 is nearing to an end, I have learned so much about how online resources and social media play the roles in educating students and adult learners in 21st century. However, the other day I read about this article “The next step in librarianship: Is the traditional library dead?“, the author discussed about the relationship between online learning resource and traditional library, and this article had me reflect on the belief that the information technology revolution has destroyed traditional libraries.

From the start of my learning project, a lot of my research on learning resources are from the Internet. I can feel that I depend on the Internet so much that sometimes I forget the traditional library. Sometimes I miss the old days where I usually sat in a quite corner at my University in Vietnam, with no electric gadgets, no laptop, just me being busy with tons of book on the table. However, I can see at most of the libraries that I had chances to visit, the present of computers are increasing, this can be the results of the high demand of the patrons to access to digital resources. Libraries have really undergone a transformation from a manual system to a technologically-driven system. Comparing with traditional library, digital library and online learning resources have  made acquisition, storage and retrieval of information cheaper, more efficient, and faster. However, in term of cultural role, traditional library is still irreplaceable. I will address more of this issue in my summary of learning.

At the University of Regina, I feel privileged when I have the free access to the University’s library system. When I typed “Cantonese in the search box, there were 66 results on books that help facilitate my learning.


I decided to check out some of them and found this one which I think suitable with my Cantonese level. Fortunately, it is a digital book and I got free access to it with my UofR account.


I also got these books:


As the course is nearing to an end, I might not document my learning progress anymore but I just let you all know that I will stick with these books and resources as I continue with my learning. I will try to spend at least 8 – 10 hours/ week. Hopefully, until Summer next year, I will be able to reach the initial goal I set for learning this language: be able to communicate with locals when I travel to Hongkong. I just can’t wait for this trip.

Thank you for all the comments and supports throughout my learning progress!


Reorganizing my Toddler’s Closet – Mom win!

This last week I moved on to reorganizing my toddler’s bedroom closet. With each new project, I find a new learning experience. I knew I wanted to install a shelving system that I could adjust as my daughter’s needs change. As always, I went to the internet to look for inspiration. When I found Do it on a Dime’s Toddler Room Organization & Tour video I knew exactly what I wanted to do!

I went to the local hardware store to find something similar and found the Rubbermaid FastTrack system would fit the bill.  But I soon discovered that this was going to be an expensive project! I had to scale back on the number of uprights and shelves I wanted, but am still impressed with how it turned out.

This is the video of my toddler’s closet makeover tour!

My Process

To determine what configuration I would install in the closet I needed to find out what items I was going to store in this space. I first decluttered the closet by sorting the items into Donate, Consign, Toss, Relocate, Keep piles.  With the items I kept I determined I would only need three shelves. This was a good thing, considering the cost of the system.

I went to the hardware store and bought 2 uprights, 6 brackets, and 3 shelves. Turning to YouTube I found an excellent video from a Lowe’s representative installing a similar system. I soon found out I was missing the horizontal hang track that would provide strength to the system. Great, this project is getting very pricey! Thankfully, when I went back to the hardware store a representative told me that I wouldn’t necessarily need the additional item if I secured the vertical standards with a screw at every hole, and ensure I space the standards no more than 24 inches apart. This spacing will provide the strength I need. Perfect! Done!

Finding a Stud and Installing Vertical Standards

I am usually pretty great at finding things. But finding a wall stud has been difficult for me. The videos make it look so simple. Perhaps I have a defective stud finder? I did eventually locate a stud for the one vertical upright but needed to use plugs for the other to ensure the shelving would be able to hold weight. I posted my process for installing a plug when I reorganized my master closet, feel free to check it out.

Next, I attempted to level the vertical standards. Leveling is not easy to do while flying solo! Balancing the upright, the level and then trying to mark the wall was an awkward dance. It definitely takes some practice! After a few attempts, I was able to negotiate the steps and start to drill. I have to admit that it is not exactly level, but no one will notice. I have been learning to use the drill quite a bit this semester and I am happy that I really have gotten the hang of it.

Installing the brackets was surprisingly frustrating. At this point in the project, I was beginning to feel uncoordinated. I soon realized, though, that it was pretty dark in the closet and I needed a light. I wish I had someone to snap a picture of me with the headlamp while fitting these brackets in. However, I did a reenactment for your viewing pleasure, without the light.

This project has been completed for a couple of days now and my toddler’s room has never been so neat and tidy. A place for everything and everything in its place. This is my new mantra, my friends! My toddler is now putting her dirty clothes and toys back into their “new homes” as she calls it. I hope this enthusiasm lasts for a mom win!

We are now at the end of the semester so I may not be posting any more major projects documenting my learning on becoming more organized. The journey has not ended though. I will continue to use what I have learned these past few months and tackle some more unorganized, hot messes! I hope to post my top 5 tips on becoming more organized at the end of this week. Stay tuned.

Thank you for continuing to share in my learning journey.

Is Your Social Media Friend’s Advice Sponsored?

If you are a parent of little ones you probably have a friend you go to when you need advice. You might be looking for the toughest stain remover out there or how to get your 18-month-old to sleep through the night. Why do we rely on our friends for this how-to information? Because they have experience and we TRUST them! With social media, the ‘friends’ we can go to for this advice has grown exponentially.

Introducing the mom blog... These ladies are in the trenches, living the life of momdom and they have valuable advice! Their videos and blogs are the real deal. What to know how to do anything on a budget? Want the inside scoop on sleeping? They have you covered!

But what if, at the end of the day, all they are trying to do is make an income while forging friendships and connections online? Does that make their advice less valuable?

When I started my learning project to get my household, and my family, more organized I didn’t turn to Martha Stewart or Tori Spelling for guidance. I found them selling the idea of the perfect Pinterest worthy home. And trust me, I know the path perfectionism leads you on… it isn’t a pretty journey!  I was more interested in what was achievable, what was real, and, more importantly, who I could identify with.

I found two great mom bloggers that fit this bill. But the more I followed them online I started getting hints of product placement and endorsements. It only became obvious to me when I was scouring the aisles of Wal-Mart in vain looking for the exact sippy cup that Kathryn from Do It On A Dime highly recommended. Was I just following the advice of my well-intentioned friend Kathryn or had I been had by marketing geniuses! (Clearly, in this video it says “sponsored”)

Critical interactions with mom bloggers

Dr. Stephen Brookfield, a critical thinker and adult educator, poses excellent questions and methods to dig deeper when engaging in social media. One question he asked in his article Teaching Students to Think Critically About Social Media is: “Who sponsors your Communications/Devices?”. This question led me to ask myself: Who sponsors my friend’s advice? Who is behind their messages and what are they trying to sell me? Who is really benefiting from this relationship?

Is their advice any less valuable?

Ok, so now that I am aware the mom bloggers I follow might be sponsored in some capacity, do I ignore their advice? Or, have they built enough social credit with me that I am willing to overlook the potential lack of authenticity?

After considering these questions I have decided that I will continue looking to mom bloggers for advice. However, I now have a critical lens through which I can assess what is genuine and truly valuable.


Brookfield, S. D. (2015). Teaching Students to Think Critically About Social Media. New Directions For Teaching & Learning2015(144), 47-56. doi:10.1002/tl.20162

Learning Chinese (part 6): Directions



It’s me again with some progress of my Cantonese Chinese learning. As I said in previous blog, my goal in learning Cantonese is to be able to use this language when I go travel in HongKong next Summer. When learning basic Cantonese for travel purpose, next step, also the one of the most important steps is to learn how to tell directions.

At this point, I am having some difficulties in locating resources for my learning. I was introduced to OERs (Open Education Resources) a couple weeks ago, I’ve been searching for some OERs in Cantonese but I haven’t found any, most of the resources on OERs that I found are Mandarin Chinese, not Cantonese Chinese.

Fortunately, I found Quizlet, an interactive learning tool that helps the learners learn through flashcards. After each lesson, the learners have the opportunity to take tests and quizzes to evaluate their learning.

You can log in Quizlet with either your Facebook or Gmail account or use can sign up for a new Quizlet account. Basically, it’s free but if you are a teacher and you want to have upgraded benefits, you can pay a monthly fee for around $1.50/ month so you can design your own learning flashcards and quizzes for your students. As a learner, I’m good with free account.

So this is how Quizlet looks like, when I typed Cantonese directions on the “search” toolbar.

First, I need to learn the direction phrases through flashcards, there are 13 phrases in total and I have learn all of them before I can move to next step – taking quizzes and tests. While learning phrases through flashcards, I can click on the “sound icon” at the bottom of each flashcard to hear the pronunciation of that word and phrase.

quizlet 2.png

After I went through all the flashcards, I took the a quiz


Then a test:


I am currently following “Cantonese Couple“s Youtube channel. They make a lots of videos teaching Cantonese, I enjoy their videos a lot.


Apart from “Cantonese Couple” I am also following MtzCherry 文車厘, she is also a well-known Youtuber in making videos of Cantonese learning.


I am going to practice these directions phrases this week and try to find more Youtube’s videos about Cantonese directions phrases.

Thank you for reading!

Tackling the Master Bedroom Closet

Last month, I followed Clutterbug’s 30 Decluttering Challenge . When it came to decluttering clothes I have to confess, I skipped it. I have been putting off decluttering the two closets and three bins of my clothes for some time actually. Thankfully, this major learning project has been the answer to a lot of my procrastination with home organization. It was time to tackle the master bedroom closet!

Take the video tour of my reorganized master bedroom closet!

Before – one hot disorganized mess!                             After – Room to breathe!


There were three things I learned from this part of my learning project. First, developing the skills to be ‘handy’ around the house requires a lot of troubleshooting. Second, pairing down my wardrobe led me to reflect on my own body image. Finally, sharing your imperfect life on social media takes courage.

Being Handy – Hanging the Ironing Board Hanger

I video documented my learning adventure with installing the ironing board hanger. As mentioned in the video, it was not as straightforward as I had imagined when I originally bought the hanger in the summer. My super handy mom was my videographer for this job. I was lucky I had an expert to get me over some of the snags I was running into! For example, when I started the project, I checked for studs where I wanted to install the hanger and found none. I tried to hammer in three plugs into one of the predrilled holes – none would go in and each ended up looking like an accordion. My mom was laughing the entire time she was filming my failed attempts! She finally clued me in that I was trying to drive the plug into a stud.

That wasn’t the only snag I had to troubleshoot. But each time I needed to, I learned more about operating a drill, multiple ways of using tools, and how a house is constructed. I didn’t include those snags in my video because I had originally thought I would shoot it as a “how-to” demonstration. I haven’t learned how to edit videos yet, so after each time I solved a problem, we had to start filming from the beginning. After what seemed like 20 takes, I was so excited to have successfully completed the job.

Pairing Down Clothes & a Mother’s Body Image

When I was pregnant with my first child a well-meaning friend told me that she left the hospital in her regular jeans after having her baby. What did I do? I totally packed my regular jeans to wear when I left the hospital. Naive? Completely! There was no way I fit into those jeans until 12 months later. Even then, they didn’t fit comfortably. Yet, I kept all my pre-pregnancy clothes thinking that one day I would fit them the way I once had.

I thought my only reason for putting off pairing down my wardrobe was because of its overwhelming overabundance. Although that was part of it, I don’t think I was ready to let go of the notion that I would once again fit the pre-pregnancy body image I had of myself. I do not think it was vanity, but more the expectations inherent in our culture of thinness. Perhaps it’s maturity on my part to start my own revolt against popular media’s representation of what a ‘normal’ body looks like and start to embrace the mom jeans!

Once I had this realization, I started to look for ways to tackle my clothes. I found a blog post from Uncluttered Simplicity and her recommendation of shock treatment. It took about 3-4 hours to go through the process, but it was quite liberating. Especially once I had the resolve to embrace a more positive body image!

Sharing our Imperfect Lives on Social Media takes Courage

I really hesitated in sharing the before photos of the hot mess my closet was in and the photo of the big mound of clothes I had. Sharing our imperfect lives on social media takes courage. And we don’t see enough of that celebrated. We see a lot of Pinterest worthy homes we aspire to have or the perfect family photo we wish we could recreate of our own. But to share our authentic lives more often, especially on social media, takes courage and vulnerability. Brene Brown has said vulnerability leads to connection. I really hope you have found some connection with what I have shared with you.

What local charities would you recommend I donate my clothes?

Goals for this coming week

  • Install shelving system in children’s closets
  • Create and implement processes to maintain organization
  • Continue to identify ways in which my little people can help and benefit
  • Identify environmentally and socially responsible ways in which I can “relocate” the stuff I am ready to let go

Thank you for respectfully sharing in my journey!

The link to comment is below the title of this post. 

Learning Chinese (part 5): Greetings



First of all I would like to clarify my goal in learning Chinese Cantonese. I don’t shoot for a star, in stead, I made it clear that next Summer I will do backpacking traveling to Hong Kong so my learning goal is that I will be able to “survive” there with my basic Cantonese knowledge. I have decided to only focus on what really essential. I don’t think I will focus too much on grammar, sentence structures all that stuff. I would rather focus on basic vocabulary, asking simple questions…so I will be able to “survive” in a Cantonese speaking region like Hong Kong.

I have done backpacking traveling to more than 15 countries so far and in every place, learning some basic greetings is essential.



Talking about Cantonese greeting phrases there are hundreds of them, something like Hello and I’m from Canada…etc are first things I need to know. However, there are also lots of greeting phrases and I don’t know how much is enough that I need to learn. I start thinking of situations such as when I first arrive at Hong Kong airport, how should I greet people there, how should I greet and introduce myself when I arrive in my hotel, who should I greet people I meet along my trip…

This video gives many useful greeting phrases in Cantonese:

Also this:

However, I find these videos on Youtube are just about some common greetings, I think I need to learn more of the greeting phrases so I found out this site, This site has 15 pages of Cantonese greeting phrases, that’s a lot to learn, also I can hear the pronunciation of each phrases by clicking the “play button” next to each phrases. Very convenient and easy to learn!


I will go from here and try to practice pronouncing and remember these greeting phrases. Thank you for reading.

Learning Chinese (part 4): Numbers and dates

My learning buddy Yan suggested the next step in learning Chinese Cantonese in to learn numbers and dates so here I am with part 4 of my Chinese learning project. 

So basically, all the Chinese materials I am using are translated into Roman characters. It is recommended that as a beginner, the learners, especially those who have the first language such as English should start with Romanization system of Chinese first because, in order to read and write these ” 一 二 三 四 五 六 七 八 九 十”, it takes years!” We, Vietnamese, use Roman characters and our pronunciation and tones are quite similar to Chinese Cantonese so this is an advantage.  

Anyway, so I first learned to count from 1 to 10, when I speak, I pay attention to the tones and pitches


(via: proletariatfashionista’s WordPress)


1: yat

2: yee

3: sam

4: say

5: mm

6: look

7: chat

8: bart

9: gow

10: sup

For 11, you put 10 (sup) + 1 (yat) so 11 is pronounced as sup yat.

For 12, you put 10 (sup) + 2 (yee) so 12 is pronounced as sup yee.

For 13, you put 10 (sup) + 3 (sam) so 13 is pronounced as sup sam.

… the same thing applied to 14 – 19.

20 = 2 (yee) x 10 (sup) so 20 is pronounced as yee sup

21 = 20 (yee sup) + 1 (yat) so 21 is pronounced as yee sup yat

22 = 20 (yee sup) + 2 (yee) so 22 is pronounced as yee sup yee.

… the same thing applied to 23 – 29, and 29 – 99

100 = 1 (yat) X 100 (baak) so 100 is pronounced as yat baak 

101 = 100 (yat baak) + 1 (yat) so 101 is pronounced as yat baak yat

148 = 100 (yat baak) + 40 (say sap) + 8 (baat) so 148 is pronounced as yat baak say sap baat

1000 = 1(yat) x 1000 (cheen) so 1000 is pronounced as yat cheen

1975 = 1000 (yat cheen) + 900 (gau baak) + 70 (chat sap) + 5 (mm) so 1975 is pronounced as yat cheen gau baak chat sap mm.

I was so frustrated because, in order to pronounce some numbers properly, I had to do the math first, like 1975 = 1000 + 900 + 70 + 5 = yat cheen gau baak chat sap mm 😀



Day: yat (same with the pronunciation of 1)

Year: lean

Week: sing kay

Month: yoot

Date: yat kay

January: Yat (one) yoot

February: Yee (two) yoot

March: saam (three) yoot

April: say (four) yoot

May: mm (five) yoot

June: look (six) yoot

July: chat (seven) yoot

August: bat (eight) yoot

September: gow (nine) yoot

October: sap (ten) yoot

November: sap (ten) + yat (one) yoot

December: sap (ten) + yee (two) yoot

March 19th: saam yoot (March) + sap gow (19) yat (use “yat” at the end in the case of saying dates)

February 1st: yee yoot (February) + yat (one) yat

So now I know how to pronounce numbers and dates, the next step? let’s practice! So I thought of a way to practice reading numbers is to print out the bingo sheet and read out loud the numbers on the bingo sheet.


In order to practice reading dates, I printed out the 2018 calendar and randomly picked certain dates and spoke them out loud.


I hope I can “master” how to read numbers and dates in a few dates by keeping practicing. I will keep you guys updated on my learning progress.

Thank you for reading.


Mindful Decluttering and Organizing – A Work in Progress

This week we were asked to go more in-depth about our progress in our learning journey. If you recall, my learning project focuses on developing systems and processes that introduce more efficient organizational systems and processes in my home. I would like to share some insights that I have gained while endeavouring on this learning journey.

Journey to a More Efficient Household

I predicted that my house would get messier before it gets organized, and I was right! I view this as a good thing. Thanks to the suggestions of the many bloggers and online professional resources I have tapped into, I am finding that being mindful of our needs versus our wants are helping to let things go. To accomplish this, I have been concentrating on decluttering cupboards, closets, and drawers. That leaves the surface clutter. (shudder)

My house is definitely lived in, there is no doubt about it, and I make no apologies… Ok, I totally do. Anytime someone comes over unannounced I am sure to blurt out: “Don’t mind the mess.” as I kick five pairs of shoes into the front closet and squeeze the door shut.

Looking at my house with “fresh eyes” as home organization gurus suggest, I see a lot of surface clutter. Random everyday objects that have either grown legs or my little creatures find it a joy to relocate them to random parts of the house. This is certainly unavoidable, but frustrating nonetheless.

Overall, I do have to remind myself that our house is also our home. A home we create memories, raise a family and feel connected in. For that, I do not apologize. However, finding a balance between a lived-in house and one that is organized enough has been one of the greatest challengings I have faced so far.

This is where processes come into play and where I will be concentrating my effort on going forward.

Insights Gained While Learning On/Offline

Learning with others on social media

Learning from and with others online has been very interesting. As a social creature, I was motivated to join the Clutterbug’s 30 Decluttering Challenge on her Facebook page as part of my learning journey. This type of online social learning provided motivation and a community of like-minded individuals. What can I do with 14ish wineglasses I never use? This group was quick to suggest DIY projects. Need encouragement when feeling overwhelmed? This group was ready to offer support.

Although I found it to be very helpful, I did come across the dark side of sharing on social media, where a mother was Facebook shamed for her cluttered kitchen. After writing about it in a previous blog post, I came across this same woman posting a before and after photo of her kitchen despite her shamers. The 300+ positive comments and encouragement became the bright side of sharing on social media. She set an excellent example for others to believe in yourself despite others’ judgment!

Going far outside my comfort zone

After completing my front entry organization project, I was so excited! My two little kids are still loving the ease of access to their outerwear. We are still working on the consistent use of that space. This was certainly a confidence booster needed to continue being ‘handy’ with tools.

My next major installation project I hope to tackle is a shelving system for my children’s closets. However, I am a bit apprehensive of the math that will be required to space the brackets etc properly. I was surprised that this was one of my major challenges so far. Although I am questioning the level of my math literacy skills, I have a strong resolve to figure it out.

Recently, I have read two classmates talking about growth mindset in learning (Kara and Colleen). With hard work and perseverance, I will learn the math, and the logic, needed to complete this next project! I am viewing this as a growth opportunity leading to transferability – completing other projects, helping my children with math and logic and ultimately my self-efficacy!



Do you have any suggestions of resources that may help to figure out the math required to hang shelves? What would your approach be?

Goals for the rest of the Semester

  • Find another online declutter challenge to keep me motivated
  • Install shelving system in children’s closets
  • Create organizational system in Master bedroom closet
  • Continue to identify ways in which my little people can help and benefit
  • Identify environmentally and socially responsible ways in which I can “relocate” the stuff I am ready to let go