Hi! I’m Joanna Blanding.
I’m Asian, brown, and proud.
I’m a wife, mother, social entrepreneur, sister, and friend. In our household, I’m the only one who loves spicy food.
In 2015, I got married to Michael Blanding. To this day, I hold a special place as the only Asian person in the family I’ve married into—a family that’s loved me from day one.
My husband is a kind, multi-talented and handsome redhead who's spent most of his life in Asia where we met. I was born in the Philippines and now live with my family in Singapore.
We have two children—an energetic boy named André Miguel who lights up every party with his irresistible smile, and Mateo David, our strong warrior with a gentle spirit who is now in heaven.
Here’s my observation: I see a lot of women reach the point of exhaustion when they go through life changes, particularly when planning their wedding, setting up their home, and having their first child. Along the way, precious priorities get compromised, particularly time, finances and relationships.
At the same time, I get asked a lot about how to plan a wedding, how to organize the home, how to manage the family’s finances, how to plan for having children (if it can ever be planned!), how to work from home with kids around, and a few other things in between.
So I thought, I’d help women who are going through life changes by sharing the lessons that I’ve learned, and tips on things that I believe God’s made me good at.
Welcome to The Asian Mrs. Blanding website!
Can I tell you a secret? I still cry at weddings. Always. Even after attending over 50 weddings just in the last seven years.
I’ve been involved, to varying degrees, in these 50 weddings. I was either part of the entourage, or part of the coordinating team. What a great honor and privilege it’s been!
In my earlier pursuits to help brides find resources online to plan their weddings, I discovered that the internet was lacking the kind of information I was looking for.
Most of the popular wedding-related content is focused on the aesthetics of the big day. But few talk about how to prepare for marriage. I saw the need for wiser information.
On setting up a home
If you had met me in my early 20s, you'd see that I was a far cry from "the domestic type". My room was always a mess, I could barely fry an egg, and I was never on time for anything.
My induction into homemaking happened when I moved to Singapore on my own. I had to learn things one by one. Since then, I’ve been able to put together some nice meals for other people. For many periods in a year, I’d feed over 20 adult tummies at a time, week on week. I’ve also now become known for my punctuality! If I can change for the better, anyone else can.
I was far from being an ace in homemaking when I got married. I simply taught myself to be teachable. I learned from other wives. In the process, while frustrating over the pressures of having an Instagramable home, I made a decision to not perfect things. My husband prefers a wife who tries her best over a perfectionist who doesn’t welcome help!
On being a mom
As a little girl, I was never the type who dreamt of becoming a mother. I was very much open to it, but motherhood just didn’t occupy my mind before I actually became a mom.
I’ve always liked kids, but more as a playmate than a caretaker. The “motherly instincts” only kicked in when I had my firstborn in my arms.
So, what inspired me to talk about motherhood? Well, I now love being a mother. And because every mom needs a vulnerable mom who can tell her, “I’m still figuring things out. I’ve learned this. You want to try it?” I’m taking on that role. I’m the type who’d leverage a parenting trick from other moms so I don’t have to figure things out from scratch, as long as they’re aligned with our family’s values. You might be a similar kind of mom. If so, I can be your friend.
I can be of best help with administrative tricks to manage growing families. After all, every mother has to somehow know about how the family’s budget works, how to save for rainy days, and what to do with the kids’ toys when the toy box starts to overflow they’re just getting a bit too many.
Beyond The Asian Mrs. Blanding
While being The Asian Mrs. Blanding is huge in my heart, I’m also passionate about so many other things. I’ve created these other brands:
Giving is Social. I started this social enterprise in 2013 to inspire, inform and connect givers. I’ve authored books and courses teaching people how to give back in a life-transforming way. For those who want to take their giving journey further, I offer a coaching and leadership program. If this sounds interesting to you, check out givingissocial.com or @givingissocial on Instagram.
The Collective Asia. The brand offers virtual administrative assistance to entrepreneurs and small businesses. There are productivity tools available too. Need some help with your long list of things-to-do? Check out thecollective.asia.
I’m only able to do what I do because I’ve got a supportive husband and a team of multi-skilled women working with me. These women are better at many things than I am. So I delegate. It’s a must to keep up with life’s demands.
See you around! Thanks for dropping by.