Friday, September 7, 2018


Today is a very big day for me. I officially turned 40 today. We're supposed to be on our way to New York right now but something came up so we postponed the trip until the first week of October. No complains from me at all. I am enjoying my day off from work. Tomorrow, we're going out with a small group of friends for dinner to celebrate my birthday. If you're a follower of my blog, you probably heard me talking about my birthday for the past few weeks. Leading up to this day, I feel really good about where things are in my life. I woke up at 4:00 this morning with an overwhelming sense of gratefulness. I started to reflect on where I am at in life, what I accomplished so far and what goals do I set for myself. Today, I am sharing something very personal to me so that you'll have a better understanding of where I am coming from. I am a true believer that life events shape our thinking, our beliefs and our personal development. It was definitely the case for me. I ended 6 years of marriage right before I turned 30. I wouldn't say it was the darkest time of my life because it wasn't. My family was very supportive and I didn't feel like I was going through the divorce myself. However, it was definitely the lowest point of my life. I won't go too much into details. Both parties have moved on. I am obviously remarried and have my own family. The other party is remarried and has his own family as well. It doesn't matter how amicable your divorce is, it's a major life event, it's painful and tiring. The divorce for sure took a toll on me. While my parents gave me their unconditional love and support, they couldn't give me any type of guidance. What I want to do with my future was 100% on me. I distanced myself from mutual friends completely. I just wanted to stay away from drama and judgments (sad but true, people will judge you). I wanted a fresh start and took this opportunity to focus on myself. Slowly but surely, I started to discover my own identity, got to know myself better, what I truly want in life, what should I focus on and most importantly, I have a clear vision of who I am. I become stronger and more independent throughout this whole experience. Things started to turn around shortly after. The past 10 years of my life were full of ups and downs, trial and errors. Looking back, I can't help but feeling great about how far I've come. I wanted to note down some of my accomplishments as well as my goals for the next 10 years (hope you don't mind the bullet points - I am a visual learner). Outfit details: Keepsake lace dress | Rolex watch | Le Specs sunglasses | Express sandals | Chanel WOC

What I've accomplished so far:
  • I am married to the most wonderful person. This might sound cheesy but he's everything I ever wanted in a partner. This guy challenges me everyday, keeps me grounded but at the same time, spoils me and treats me the way I want to be treated. We came from very different backgrounds and had to work through many differences and conflict to be where we're at today. The first couple years of marriage weren't easy but I have always felt like we're a team. If we put our heads together, we can conquer anything. We're not perfect but we're perfect for each other is what describes us best. We spent the last 10 years of our marriage building a solid foundation for our future. By that I meant if something happens to one of us today, the other person would be able to take care of the family without much interruption (that's our goal)
  • We built our forever home. It is our pride and joy. We want this to be the girls' childhood home and hope they'll find happiness and comfort feelings every time they come home for the holidays.
  • I spent the last 10 years building a stable career. I feel fortunate to be a part of a fast growing company. There are growth opportunities and potential. I will talk a bit more about my new job in the upcoming Q&A post
  • The girls are growing and doing amazingly in school. I'm determined to raise my daughters to be strong, confident, not afraid of taking risks and if they fall for whatever reason, I am always here to pick them up
  • Own some of the most amazing things in my closet that I could only dream of 5 years ago.
  • Last but not least, if you follow me on social media then you know we're officially boat owners! 
Goals for the next 10 years:
  • Pay off the mortgage: We wouldn't have a mortgage if we didn't move. Our current home is a step-up from the previous home. I am planning to pay off the house before I turn 50. We have a personal financial adviser to monitor our finances. If you're interested in knowing more about our retirement plans, the girls' college plans and our investment in general, let me know. I can certainly share a few tips.
  • More travel: Travel makes me so happy. We crossed Hawaii, Paris, Rome, Canadian Rockies and Alaska off our travel bucket list. We're heading to Machu Picchu, Peru next August. What's left on our bucket list? Greece, Japan, Maldives and Amsterdam. Those are 10 places on our bucket list. There are many more places that I would like to visit. We are talking about doing a trip out West with a couple of friends who used to live in Utah. Might be able to swing a trip to Aruba with my siblings next year. I wanted to visit New England in the Fall
  • Spend more quality time with my parents (and I am not talking about getting together on the weekend). They worked very hard their whole life to provide my brother and I with the most comfortable life possible. They don't really do much for themselves. I'd love to be able to take them places while they still can
  • Now that I am older, taking care of my body and mind is one of my top priorities. Yoga has many benefits for your body, mind and soul and it's something I want to get into.
  • Sometimes, I feel like I am extremely closed off when it comes to meeting new people. I like to change the mindset and be more outgoing. I made some great connections this past year just by making small talk. Small talk turned into great friendships
  • More home projects: The patio project is a lot bigger than we anticipated but we're hoping to wrap it up in the next few weeks. Then we're going to start on the little one's bedroom. After that, it'll be the mud room then my closet. Those are some home projects that we're planning to do for the next year or so.
I can truly say I am the happiest I’ve ever been. We established a solid foundation. As long as things are going the way they're right now, the future will be taking care of by itself. The next 10 years, I'll be focusing on enjoying life in general and taking care of my body and mind. Not necessarily excited about this milestone birthday but I have accepted the fact that I am 40 and embracing it. Age comes with life experiences, goals and maturity. You're never too old to discover new vistas in the search of happiness and live life to the fullest. I look forward to this new chapter of my life. The best is yet to come.


Karrie said...

Happy Birthday! Congratulations on all of your accomplishments and for sharing all that you have shared. I know that you will reach all of your next goals.

Sandy said...

thank you for your great sharing of your life. thank you for all the positive vibes. Happy Birthday!!

Sydney's Fashion Diary said...

Thank you so much for your kind words and support. It means so much to me.

Sydney's Fashion Diary said...

Thank you, Sandy! Always try my best to have a positive mind. Enjoy the rest of your week!

Annie said...

Happy Belated Birthday and thankful for sharing such a personal and inspiring post with us!

Fan from Oregon said...

Happy birthday! Thank you for sharing such personal information. I think it's so brave of you to be out there, blogging about fashion and your life. I don't think I could be ever that courageous. You such a inspirational person - your attitude, your approach to life, and how relatable you are. I LOVE getting outfit ideas and seeing glimpses of your beautiful home. I also really enjoyed your cooking video. Congrats of all of your amazing accomplishments!

SydneysFashionDiary Blog said...

Thank you so much, Annie!

SydneysFashionDiary Blog said...

Thank you for following along all these years. I still remember your thoughtful comments from last year. You're the reason I am still here. I truly appreciate the support <3