A mother's day special featuring Charmaine, @eleventhour

A day in the life of Charmaine.

Otherwise known by her Instagram handle @eleventhhour, Charmaine wears multiple hats, is a full-time mom and co-founder of @itselementaryco.

Read on as she takes us through a day in her life.


At the start of 2020 I told myself that my resolution for the year was to slow down and do less.

Packing our days with non-stop activity seems to have become the norm for so many of us and too often, I've found myself complaining that I don't have enough time. I didn't think it was a sustainable way to live, and so I consciously decided to stop over-scheduling myself. I want to be able to feel well rested, spend quality time with my loved ones. and not feel rushed all the time.

That was obviously a lot easier last year since we were stuck at home for the most part. This year, my oldest daughter Charlie started Primary 1 and the youngest, Dahlia started school for the first time. Charlie is in the morning session and Dahlia is in the afternoon, so most are spent shuttling the both of them to and from school, while squeezing in emails, meetings and calls in between.

Image taken from @eleventhour.


A typical day for me begins at 6:15am where I get Charlie and myself ready so we can send her to school. 4 expressways and 20 mins take us from the North-East to the East where her school is (she's in my alma mater, CHIJ KatongConvent) and by 7:30am we're home again. If Dahlia is still asleep, I crawl back into bed again for a short nap. If not, it's breakfast (I usually only have tea) before starting work for the day. 

We've been working from home since last March and although I miss seeing the team daily, I really don't miss the commuting to and from work & meetings. These days, most of our discussions happen over zoom and email, which always makes it a lot easier to work on the move. Yesterday, I took a call in a stairwell outside a photography studio. Who knows where I'll work from next?

The one thing I would like to make more time for would be exercise. Yoga, strength training, and rock climbing. Those are the activities I enjoy but have been neglecting since the start of the year so I need to get back to doing them more regularly again. The kids and I have also recently picked up paddle boarding and morning sessions are really so much fun. It's peaceful out on the water and if I feel like it, I can lie down on my board and relax out on the sea. 

Once the kids go to bed, it's finally me time. Long, hot showers are 100% my jam. I've also realised that most of my good ideas come to me while I'm in the shower! Before the circuit breaker, I was never much of a TV person. Now, between Netflix, HBO Go, Disney+ and Apple TV, I've no shortage of movies and shows to watch and most days that's how I wind down for the day - wine or sake in hand optional.  When I don't feel like watching something, I'll read a book. I just finished Margaret Atwood's The Testaments (I'm a huge Handmaid's Tale fan) and am now starting on Ready Player Two. Recently. I cleared out my old bedroom at my parent's place and found a whole pile of old books - some of which I've yet to read. Going to start on those at some point this year.

Margaret Atwood's A Handmaids TaleImage take from Amazon: A Handmaids Tale.

If there's anything else I really want to get cracking on this year it would be getting my driver's license. I've put it off for so long and it's started bugging me more of late, so I'm taking that as a sign that I need to finally do something about it, and soon!

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