21 April 2020

🐱Being Mom to Leo

4/21/2020 31 Comments

Hi everyone! How are we doing during this MCO season? I understand that everybody is going through these difficult times in their own way and with how things are progressing, I think we're all doing a great job at trying to contain this virus pandemic. As for me, things have not changed as much. I've always been an indoor sort of person who likes to go about her day in her own privacy.  

However, even for me, I have to admit, these past few weeks have put a rather strange pressure on me. I miss going outside, meeting my friends, going to class and spending my leisure time outside of my room. At the same time, I know this will be over soon enough and I'm paying a small fraction of what I can sacrifice to have the good old days back.

I would have posted an entirely separate post about my experience during the MCO or anything about the virus pandemic. However, after much contemplation on my part, I've come to the conclusion that I rather not talk about it if I can because I know we are already so much consumed with discussions on this very topic. I thought, perhaps a different fresh conversation between you and I would give us space to bring our minds away from all of that, even just a little. And with that, I want to talk about my experience of being a cat mom to Leo.
I've actually already posted an article of Leo's background in another post called, "🐈 It's Time You Meet Leo". He had a rough start as a kitten. To make the story short, he was dropped off by his mother (I said something else in the previous post) from the high wall separating our garden with our next door neighbour twice before we finally took him in before she would do it again the third time. Perhaps she was in the process of transitioning her litter of kittens to a safer place but couldn't commit to take care of all of them that she dropped Leo with us. We might never know. Whatever the reason was, we couldn't refuse him. I love cats and little kittens, we all do as a family but that day, when my parents took a look at the ball of shivering and starved kitten in my hand, they thought he wouldn't survive another day. It was hard for me to accept that, I guess I never had something die in my watch. I didn't want to give up either.
I made sure he was warm, took every few minutes to check on him in his little box filled with dry warm towels we had to spare. And during all that chaos, I was still hoping that his mum would call out for him, knowing that she had one little kitten missing. But she never did. Hours passed by and it was noon, he looked a little freshened up after his long nap. And he was immensely hungry. He was peeking at me through his half-opened eyes, almost closed shut with dried tears. We didn't have any suitable food or milk for a kitten, and he was hungry. I think I was alone at home that day and I couldn't drive (not even for toffee) to the nearest pet store to get what he needed. Leo was getting weaker and feeling a little desperate, I booked for the nearest Grab and bought the necessary things from a pet store. He got his milk warmed up, I made sure to rub his tummy with a warm towel to circulate his bladder and put him back in his towel where he started to wobble around and explore this strange box he was put in. 
We pretty much knew we were head over heels with Leo to give him away. He's a really sweet loving thing who absolutely craved for attention, especially mine at the time. I was like his surrogate mother in a way because in every 2 hours, I would be ready with a small cup and syringe to feel him milk, cleaned out the soiled towels from his cage (he moved to a cosier "room" after his stay in the box), reheated the water from a metal bottle before wrapping it with a warm towel so that he could hug it to sleep (it keeps him quiet when I finally left him to do my own thing). I realised, that even though it might never be the same as the real thing, being a cat mum is tiringgggg. It was a full-time job because small kittens need to be attended to every few hours and they're also adamant about getting your attention too. Leo used to scream/meow his lungs out if I finally thought it was time for him to settle down back in his cage. But was it all worth it? The many restless sleep I had in those short weeks he was in my care before I had to whizz back to university for my masters? Was it worth the little heartaches when I could only see him on the weekends? 

It was. He turned out to be a handsome little cat now. As he grew up, he got plenty of interesting nicknames that I'm sure he responds to each time: Yoyo, Squirrel (for the many times he literally fly from one furniture to another, with his tail behind him and looking very much like the animal he's nicknamed after), etc. He's good company for anybody who needs to stay up for work in the living room where he'll unintentionally distracts you with his cuteness. 
He loves having attention from his hooman family but we discovered he can be a little shy with new guests. Leo might be a little braver when he's older, just like his "sister", Dessi, our cat. Despite how he got us all swooning over him, I realised that even till these days, many months after we first took him, he could never really win over our Dessi. She's pretty much set on disliking him for life although she's completely fine to tolerate with his presence at home. However, that never stopped him from trying to invite her to play and hangout. 
I present to you, Queen Dessi, the empress of this household. She insists on being featured on my blog if Leo was to be showed off to.
I always imagined that this would be how their conversation go if I could understand it. I'm pretty sure it's 99.99% accurate judging by the look Dessi throws at Leo.
One thing I can take from this experience as Leo's "mum" is that caring for a kitten as young as he was might not be for everybody. It was stressful and you have to be ready at all hours in case he's hungry, needs his bedding cleaned, etc. Having support from my family made a huge difference and I had time for myself to prepare for my upcoming semester at the time. I also learned that in contrast to how I've always viewed of myself - hesitant and awkward to display affection towards those around me, I grew to be a huge softie over Leo.
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2 April 2020

πŸ’”[Relationship Series] Can We Forgive and Forget?

4/02/2020 16 Comments
Forgiveness... I used to think it was something as simple as saying, "I forgive you." but it turns out that it needs a whole lot more of myself too. It’s complicated because the whole process of forgiving can make and break you, but what will pull you through is how how ready your heart is to forgive. Forgiveness can free you from heartaches, resentment and pain when you’re willing to let go of hurting someone back, but without it, you could be left with the pain and anger simmering for a lifetime.

I'm writing this post because I believe forgiving others is the hardest thing for me to do. I say this truthfully because I’m still learning to accept the fact that forgiveness would be good for me and for the decisions I make in the present and for the tomorrows. I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic and it was left in my draft for almost a week because I wanted to be in the right mindset before I do start writing my perspectives about forgiveness and forgetting.

People have hurt me in the past and I’m sure it must have happened to you many times before. What has been keeping me back is that I thought, if I forgive too easily, then I’m letting the persons who have hurt me “free”while their actions brand on me forever.

What is forgiveness?
Forgiveness is about more than simply letting go of the cause of your pain. Forgiving is about freeing that other person while also releasing yourself from the negative emotions that weigh you down. Hatred leaves an ugly feeling inside each of us and if you notice, it makes US feel horrible. It almost feels like you’re becoming somebody else you don’t know and your life doesn’t feel the same way like how it used to be. For me personally, I can only hold so much hate for someone not longer than a few hours or a day, because hating takes so much of my time, energy and thoughts. It feels emotionally and psychologically exhausting. I think that instead of becoming somebody my mind and body struggles to live by through hatred, forgiveness can at the very least brings some relief so that the resentment won’t eat away at my heart.

Forgive and Forget?
This also brings us back to the phrase, “Forgive and forget”. Do we also need to forget what the person and the wronged actions he/she did to us? The thing about forgiveness is that it doesn’t happen by forgetting the wrong instead, it’s about stopping the negativity of hate and want of vengeance from controlling you. If you were to prefer forgetting, it provides temporary relief but at some point in your life, you’d be occupied to put forward your energy in ignoring the pain rather than facing it. To forget the pain, it has to start from forgiving. Forgetting pain can come after once we have come to fully accept your circumstances. However, again, in my opinion, forgiveness does not mean the pain becomes non-existent because it only helps to ease you from the pain and leave the memories behind.

However, having said that, you are also not obliged to fix or stay longer in a toxic relationship, or wait for that someone to change. There is no need for you to get back and reconcile to the same person who has hurt you. You have spared yourself the hurt by letting go and at the same time, you don’t need find their actions acceptable or justifiable. Forgiveness heals you from the power of the other person from controlling you and how you feel.

How Do I Forgive Someone?
1. Recognise Your Pain and Emotions
It’s really hard to face raw emotions and it is also the reason why most of us tend to choose to ignore them, hoping that they would go away if we try not to think about them for as long as we could. All the same, your pain and emotions are valuable human experiences and just like everything about you, they deserve to be recognised and given attention to. You will feel exposed, yes, but at least now you will know how you’re feeling about the person who has hurt you and the actions they’ve done.

It'll be scary at the beginning to allow yourself to feel, but it will get better. Once you've accepted the emotion, you know it can't hunt you down again. Then, reflect on why you feel affected by what they did and once you stop resisting your own pain, you’ll have a clearer mind in what to do next.

2. Give Yourself Time to Heal
Forgiveness doesn’t have to come instantly. I don’t think everybody is capable of that and I admit I don’t think I can be that forgiving with a snap of the fingers. At the very least, I need time to wrap my head around what happened, how I feel towards the issue and then I can think straight. You can’t force yourself to forgive like how you cannot pressure somebody else to do the same. If you need more time to reflect, to digest your situation better, by all means, do whatever you need to come to terms with yourself and the person who offended you.

There are some of us who need more time forgive ourselves before we can do the same to others. Some of us beat ourselves for what happened, wondered why we didn’t predict what was to happen, and how we could let it happen to us etc. We need to come to the realisation that we did the best that we could in that situation and we can live through this, just like how we managed to live through all the other obstacles we faced before.

3. And Now, We Think About The Other Person
This might be as difficult as it is to accept our emotions. In this step, we need to put ourselves in that other person's shoes. That’s right, the very person who has hurt you. We have to admit that people can be imperfect and act irrationally, just like how we have our own moments of the same behaviour. Forgiveness needs us to understand the other person and that nobody can be perfect or pleasant at all times. We have hurt our friends or family too but we preserve those special relationships because we forgive them as well as willing to understand, and vice versa. We all need forgiveness and that includes the person who has hurt you.

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Forgiveness can be a long process. It won’t or rarely happens overnight. Nor does it take a couple of encouraging words from your part or someone else’s for you to forgive somebody who has hurt you. Whatever the situation, you’re just as hurt as that person is scarred from what they’ve done to you. To move on from the past, to enjoy the time you have in the present, you need to forgive. As Carolin MΓΌller said in INSIDER, “Our life is so short, but if you live only in the past you can never enjoy your present." 

Psychentral // INSIDER // Psychology Today // Mayo Clinic // Medium

27 March 2020

πŸ“§ 6 Tips to Spring Cleaning Your Email Inbox

3/27/2020 20 Comments
I used to drown in a sea of emails. Literally. Sometimes I missed out on important emails from friends and work, or in other, they just never showed up in my primary inbox. They weren't missing, simply misplaced or buried deep beneath the other spam messages and unimportant newsletters taking over my email. 

It was a mess. 

I tried keeping my email  and other folders as organised as I could because I received tons of emails and newsletters on a daily basis. At one point, a friend of mine saw the 900+ unread messages clogging my inbox and pointed out how I needed to do something about it fast. When I left it too long without trying to clean up a few emails, the new incoming ones overwhelmed my inbox. And it turns out that what I used to experience not too long ago is also shared by many others. 

In today's post, I want to share some tips that can help you to clear out your inbox of junk for good.

6 Tips to Spring Cleaning Your Email Inbox
1. Cut the Habit of Signing up for MORE Emails
One of the first few things that you have to do (which you will thank yourself later) is to stop subscribing to more emails. Remember whenever you come across websites that require your email address to sign-up etc. and there's a tiny space at the bottom of the form that you can tick for newsletters and promotion updates? Yes, I'm talking about those. Most of the time, they come separately from the T&C tick box and you can avoid from receiving any future mails. This is where you can decide right here right now to curb junk coming to your inbox in the future. 

2. Nip the Annoying Emails from the Bud
Personally for me, the problem with deleting junk mails that you don't need or aren't interested in is that they will come back. What's more effective is to unsubscribe them before you tick them off to the bin. It saves you the time of deleting the same spam-like mails from appearing again. If you're using Gmail like I do, here is what you can do:

  • Click open to any of the mails you don't want to see anymore
  • Scroll to the bottom of that email and click on "Unsubscribe". If it's not below the message, then it may be somewhere else in the email.
  • You're saved!
Now all you're left to do is to delete those pesky emails and not expect them to return ever again.

3. Say Hello to "Filtering" 
Filtering is great for avoiding dozens and hundreds of emails from your main inbox or primary inbox. You can make full use of "categories" such as the ones in Gmail - Primary, Social and Promotions, or folders/labels. 
My email follows the category tabs based on certain functions:
  • Primary -  person-to-person emails, especially with my friends, lecturers and work purposes.
  • Social - Updates from my social media, news subscriptions, etc.
  • Promotions - Shopping deals, discount announcements, etc.
You can edit, add or remove these category tabs according to what suits you as well. However, for this post, I'll be sharing on steps to filter your messages according to these categories. 

Step 1: Click one of the messages you want to filter. Select the three dot button at the top

Step 2: Time to create your filter

Step 3: Apply label to the message AND/OR category

This especially applies to the messages that you have just filtered according to the category tabs such as Primary, Social and Promotions. Since they're all sorted, you can safely delete them all without risking the important emails you still need. To save time from ticking each box of email to delete, make the option "Select all messages" and "Select all #### conversations" in the top blue bold text before removing them. This is to make sure that all the messages in that category are selected for deletion. 

5. Have Separate Email Accounts for Work and Personal Purposes
For some, the idea of having multiple email accounts may be daunting and complicated to manage. It makes sense, I suppose, as it makes signing up across different websites through the same email simple and straightforward. However, the truth is when you have only one email account, it becomes extremely complicated (unless you're a whizz with the filters, folders and categories). 

The disadvantages of possessing one account are many, including being at risk of mismanaging personal and work emails (like sending the wrong email to someone, I've been there many times), your inbox flooded with promotion announcements and newsletters from your personal activities, and having trouble to organise messages through your public email address/business contact email. 

To avoid the hassle and mess, create different email accounts for different purposes. At the very least, have two main emails for work and play (personal). 

6. Regularly Check your Emails
But how often you may wonder. I make it a habit to check my emails at least 2-3 times a day. I may just be a full-time student who doesn't have that many messages blasting my inbox, but at the very least, I try to clear as many emails as I can throughout the day. 

If you're working, then you might want to clear out your messages more often. According to lifehack.org, working professionals could check their email at least 5 times a day and you shouldn't spend more than 2 minutes per email unless absolute necessary. The most important thing you should prioritise is your actual work and not replying to emails. 

Times of the day to check your emails: 
  • In the morning
  • Mid-morning
  • After lunch
  • Mid-afternoon
  • End of the day

And that pretty much sums up some of my tips to have a fresh and cleaner email inbox! Let me know what other tips that work for you in the comment box below!

I recently uploaded a new YouTube video on my channel. Check it out here! 

26 March 2020

πŸ“Ί [YouTube Edition] The Good and Bad Habits

3/26/2020 8 Comments

When you're stuck indoors for so long, sometimes, your creativity gets a hold on you and you do the one thing you did not have in mind. And it works. That's what happened to me yesterday. I was testing my laptop webcam just for fun and discovered that the resolution quality wasn't so bad, and before I know it, I got changed and had an outline ready to film a brand new YT video.

It was crazy.

I haven't done something like this in a long time. The last time I did something out of the blue was a year ago when I was last active on YouTube. I realised how much I missed talking to a camera and rambling on without stopping because talking is what I like to do best (depending on my mood). Yesterday, turned out to be a blast. Great lighting, cosy background in the back, I actually looked good (???) despite the lack of makeup and I had something great to talk about. 

Of course, after contemplating on my choice of topic today, I realised that talking about my good and bad habits might be rather strange, especially as a comeback video to my channel. But that was the topic I had in mind yesterday and now it's up on my channel. 

Do drop by, like and leave your comments on what you think about my topic. I would love to have a chat! 

20 March 2020

🏠 What I've Been Doing During Covid-19 Restriction Order

3/20/2020 12 Comments

Not much. To be honest, I didn't want to publish this post yesterday when I first drafted it. It had only been over two days since the restriction order had commenced and there wasn't much to share just yet. However, overall, I can say that at least for me, things have been pretty normal. My lifestyle before the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak has always been similar to what the current isolation looks like - being at home, doing my own thing and enjoying my privacy.

As much as I love being indoors, I miss being outside too. I am quite well aware of the other obvious changes since my self-quarantine started.  Here are some of the things that I noticed:

  1. I can't leave the compound of my home
  2. I can't meet my friends
  3. The future of my final semester is bleak as of now
  4. Classes are postponed, we don't have e-learning classes either
  5. Everything is about the coronavirus on the news and social media. Sometimes I get a little bit overwhelmed and I would shut off my phone. I'm very conscious of what goes out there without even looking it up.
  6. People can be selfish and stubborn in times of crisis. Earlier this week, on Monday to be exact, I was doing my usual grocery shopping to stock up my small supply of food. I was met with a crowd of people hoarding shopping trolleys and baskets, piling food supplies high which we all know would go to waste in the near future. Some brought suitcases while one lady I managed to observe, placed a basket inside of her trolley as if to stash one basket away from another person who would have needed it. It made my blood boil.

I'm currently at home with my family as there is nothing for me on campus. Since then, I've been in between keeping myself super productive or being a little slouchy. As long as I am somewhere on that spectrum, it suffices to keep me occupied while I'm indoors. On the working vigorous side, I'm continuing to compile data samplings for my research report. I'm quite lucky that they are entirely of online newspaper reports which I can easily do from home. When it comes to my occasional relaxed moments, they include these:

Farming in Epic Seven
This is Kise, one of my favourite units in the game. I took loads of time to equip her and make her strong for hunts. In fact, I'm still trying to perfect her especially to max out her equipment. Other than that, I also make do with the time by automating my Epic Seven hunts/side story while simultaneously doing something else. With the recent updates to this game, I don't have to come back too frequently to keep the game going because now, my team can do at least 15 runs without my assistance. I'm currently trying to "farm" or gain currency/materials to purchase catalysts for unit upgrade, particularly for Luna, another unit I'm trying to build.  

Bingeing through Netflix - Castlevania (TV Series)
Where do I begin with this animated series?! It's purely amazing. Even with the extremely gory bloody bits in the story, the characters are amazing and I'm loving the plot. Initially in the first two seasons, it centers on three main characters - Trevor Belmont, a demon hunter, Alucard, a half vampire, half human, and Sypha Belnades a magician speaker. They worked together to stop Dracula's genocide on humanity along with his troops of night creatures in Wallanchia. I've just managed to start with Season 3 now and I'm taking my sweet time to enjoy the last season of the show. I'm not sure what to expect but I'm in for the ride.

Catching up with my Sims
I'm new to playing the Sims so I'm still trying to get the hang of this game. It's actually one of my first purchased game on my laptop which I previously didn't have the time to pamper myself with. For me, this kind of game is ideal to pass the time as it does require my attention to make sure my Sim character doesn't do anything stupid, like yesterday, she randomly jumped inside a dumpster and made herself stink. I still don't know why she did that till today. So far, I've celebrated two of her birthdays and to my horror, her second birthday marked her as an elderly and within seconds, my thriving and successful Sim, turned into an old woman. I-- 
Image result for shock gif
It was either just me or her, but I didn't manage to get her to marry anyone. She did have a relationship with this really cool guy from her neighbourhood, but he liked to keep the relationship low-profile. In the end, neither of them made the move to be something more serious. Sis was frustrated. I wanted to see kids!!!

Playing with my two cats
Or not...

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More updates will come soon! But in the meantime, how are you guys doing with the restriction order at home/work? What do you do to keep yourself busy or relaxed? Let's keep ourselves safe wherever we are and hope that this virus pandemic will be over soon.

I edited this template from Canva for my new laptop wallpaper. Haha! It's pretty cute!

14 March 2020

πŸ€— My Favourite Things in March 2020

3/14/2020 11 Comments

Hello everyone! How are we surviving? No, I'm seriously asking since I've been hit with the hoo-ha about the coronavirus pandemic left and right on Twitter. I can't even remember the day when Twitter isn't all about the virus anymore but then again, that just shows how much things have changed since then. With that being said, I'm doing rather well myself here with just one class each week which basically minimises the need for me to get out of the house. Just to put a disclaimer out there, I very much welcome this whole staying at home thing because it equally lowers the chance for me to be out in the world and... socialise. NOT that interacting with my fellow human friends is a bad thing, but as an introvert, I have to admit, I love spending some "Me Time" in the comfort of my own home.

Oh, and I'm broke so I think that sums up my entire situation at the moment. Travelling around KL will leave an irreversible dent on my wallet. I'm only left with one economic-friendly option - staying at home until my scholarship is credited to me for this semester. I'm still waiting for that amazing day to happen since I'm currently at Week 4 heading to Week 5. I mean... that's almost half of my entire semester already. I'm not complaining, I'm just saying. Sigh... 

Other than that, I'm sort of coping with my final research project that's due in A COUPLE OF WEEKS MORE (*insert heavy panicky breathing here*) but you know, overall, I'm surviving. I had to change my topic earlier in the semester because of the lack of time in my hands, and to be honest, I think my current topic is a lot more interesting. I'll be sure to share with you what it is when it's all done and dusted later on!

But anyway, let's get back to today's topic - my favourite stuff in March! Of course, we're barely half way through the month but I do have some interesting things to share already. 

Tote Bag
I've never been like that girl/dude who went about my day with a tote bag to carry my things. Previously, I found them a little risky to use because of insecurity reasons. The opening of most tote bags that don't come with zips is usually very exposed and open. As a woman, I don't feel very safe to carry my things in there in public. BUT I grew to love these simple yet cute bags because one, they give me this aesthetic-ish kind of feel, and two, do you know how much stuff you can bring in these things?! Loads! For their simplicity, they can fit as many things as you want to carry. I don't put my personal items in there like my purse or phone but tote bags, in my opinion at least, is super great for grocery shopping or holding books and stationary for class.

Not too long ago, I received a new laptop to replace my old one which had served me well for the last 5+ years. I had to reinstall all the programs and software back to the new laptop. I downloaded WPS because I just wanted to try it out (plus it's free, sis is broke so please understand) and what do you know? It's UH-MAZINGGGG. You can customise the theme of your WPS window and mine is in freaking PINK. WITH CATS. What really got to me is that the button for a new tab is in a shape of a cutie cat paw! But on to some more seriously good aspect about WPS as I later found out, is that you can open all its other programs like powerpoint, word, etc in ONE window but in different tabs. There are even ready-made templates of documents like slides, reports, resumes, etc. 

More ASMR videos
I know, I know, I've mentioned this before in a previous post but I can't help it! ASMR videos are revolutionary. At least for me when I'm doing work and needing some soothing background sounds/music. It's like getting a nice brain massage... for free.
Some of my current favourites include videos from Miracle Forest and Made in France ASMR. I LOVE ASMR sounds of soft rain, fire crackling in the fireplace, crinkling leaves and paper. Just thinking about them got me snoozing off because that's just how much my brain appreciates getting a "massage" now and then. 

New Sets of Cutie Clothes
Ever since my birthday last month, my wardrobe has had a rush of change with new clothes coming in to spice up my daily outfits. I don't normally shop for clothes so you can still catch me wearing what I had on 5-6 years ago if you're lucky. It's the same for my shoes too. I only got two pairs with me - my everyday Sketchers and black flats. However, these days I'm altering my clothes between my peachie-coloured velvety blouse (a birthday gift) and new baju kurung. I swear, I grab at any chance just to dress up on a normal basis.
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And that wraps up my post for today. For some reason, I felt it was very brief but it's something right?  I've included some of my own illustrations to add my own personal touch to this post. But I SWEAR, I can draw so much better if I had my drawing tablet with me. I might make it a thing for my future blog posts if they turn out to look okay. Until next time, enjoyyyyy!

8 March 2020

😭 RELATABLE Postgrad Struggles (YouTube Edition)

3/08/2020 7 Comments

Hello everyone! This will be a super short post from me but I'm ECSTATIC to share something amazinggggg with you. I recently joined Aiman (@AMN MHD) in one of his new YouTube videos and it's up on YouTube RIGHT NOW. We talked about our struggles being postgrad students based on our own experience completing our masters degree. It has its own pros and cons, but for this video, we focused on the less talked-about side of the postgrad life because we felt that not everybody know what they're signing up for before they applied for masters. Because we certainly did not.

OF COURSE, we're not discouraging anyone from continuing their studies but we felt that it's important to know what you can expect once you're a postgrad student.

Go and click on Aiman's YouTube video now and support his growing channel! Thank you for supporting us!

πŸ“Ί Aiman's YouTube Channel: @AMN MHD

13 February 2020

Wanted : A New Blog List for March-July 2020

2/13/2020 20 Comments
Since I've posted about two articles in this week alone (which is bizarre considering my past failures at being consistent), I figured that an in-between post would give me more time to brainstorm for a new topic. This time around, I'm participating in Moonroha's bloglist entry contest she's currently organising from February 13th to 28th.  I haven't joined in blog contests for a while and this seems like a good opportunity!

One of the the things Moonroha is eager to know about from fellow participants is "our favourite foods" and boy do I have something to say about that. I guess coming from a Malaysian, I believe in one special life mantra: "food is bae, food is life". And some of my personal favourites include:
😍 Mee Curry
😍 Kuey Teow Goreng
😍 Nasi Lemak Rendang with extra gravy 
😍 Bubur Lambuk with shreds of beef/chicken
😍 Ayam Bakar Wong Solo paired with my fave drink, a glass of pure mango juice
😍 And should I keep going??? Yes? OKAY!
😍 Anything that my mum and dad cooks. Confirm they're the BEST.
😍 Chocolate ice-cream with the kitkats inside. They're totally my weakness!
😍 Roti jala with curry

I think I have to stop myself here because if I keep on further, before you know it, I would be scavenging through the fridge tonight.

12 February 2020

🎭 Testing How Well I Can Write Fiction

2/12/2020 11 Comments

I've gone rusty, that's for sure.

The thing about writing fiction, at least in my opinion, is that it becomes easier if you have tons of reading experience before you begin. When it comes to my journey in reading, it's not that great particularly if we're talking about all the unread physical books that have accumulated on my shelves over the years. Other than writing the occasional poem from time to time (maybe I'll save more stuff about this for another post), I haven't done anything else outside of the usual routine.


A couple of weeks ago, I thought to myself "Why not I create a little challenge... just for fun and write short fiction narratives to see how well I can write?" I found two amazing writing prompt generator websites called "Random First Line Generator" and "Story Shack" (I discovered that the latter was my favourite!) and wrote whatever prompts that came up.

It was FUN. Seriously. Although I wasn't confident enough to whip up a full story with the plots and everything, I managed to write a couple of decent scenes. Check out a few here!

To his horror, he realised he’d been this way before - a helpless boy whose fear consumed so much of his soul that he sat motionless for death to come and get him. The same white cold feeling was creeping up from his legs to the very fine hairs of his neck brought more painful memories he buried so deep in his brain he almost felt his vision blurred by them.

Tom knew that this time around, nobody could spare a hand to help him. He could hear the clashes of swords on rotten flesh not far from where he stood and shots of bullets cutting through the air. If he didn’t act right now, the dark shadows that consumed his own would strike him and leave nothing but his bones behind. [END]

"I'm sorry if it upsets you, but I'm going to marry her."

He stared hard into my eyes, trying not linger to the sight of my fist that was held up ready to aim for his cheek. For a minute, I thought his own were flinching in fear as my eyes bore angrily into his own.

What an idiot, I thought.

I sighed a little before lowering my fist that was hovering above my head. The other hand that was clutching at his collar pushed him away before I turned my back towards him.

“I kind of knew that either you or Lydia was going to break the news to me, sooner or later. But to be honest, even though I knew about the both of you coddling together behind my back, it’s funny how it still feels like a slap to my face right now,” I muttered, putting extra emphasis on each word.

“Anna, if I could turn back time, I wouldn’t go to her, I swear. But you have to understand, she’s having a baby now. My baby. She needs me,” he said softly.

I slowly turned my face to him, gave him one last slow scrutinising look at the view of the man I spent 3 years of my life with and contemplated how the hell did I not see this coming. Things were going downhill in our relationship these last few months and not once did I bother to probe to figure out what the problem was.

Breaking the trance, I threw my gaze towards my backpack that was thrown to the far end of the room and marched towards it. I zipped it up and kept one strap over my shoulder before addressing him again, “Leave me alone. Have a life with her, get more babies if you dare to or can even afford to. I don’t care. Whatever we had, I’m throwing it away so you have one less problem to worry about. I won’t grovel to get you back. I deserve much better.” [END]

"I don't often get the chance to talk to someone like you."

“I know which is why you should treat me more often. It’s not every day a girl like me would spend 2 hours of her precious time to console you on your failing relationships, Aiden,” I scoffed as I casually brushed some imaginary dusts from my boots.

He chuckled a little and we continued to sit cross-legged, watching the city gradually coming to life in the early morning light. The slow rumblings of cars and taxis far below the rooftop we were hiding on filled the comfortable silence.

“I don’t suppose you have any more useful advices to share about what I should do in a situation like this, do you?” he asked.

“I’ve shared plenty, my dear grieving friend, but you and I both know how that turned out. You never bothered to listen. But I’m telling you now, you got to let her go. She’s not coming back, you know that,”I replied nonchalantly but I offered a small smile just to cushion the blow that my best friend had got dumped the night before. And not in the best way either.

He didn’t offer any responses for a minute or two. I must have pushed it too far. Oh God, Lea, you couldn’t be a little nicer to him in moments like this when he needs you to shut your mouth and act civil.

“You’re right, as always.”

“Aiden, I - ”

There was a small sniffle from beside me. “Dammit,” He said hoarsely, rubbing the back of his sleeves to his face, “She really got me this time, hasn’t she? I didn’t think I’d be in so deep with her but I love her. And now… I don’t know what to do. What am I supposed to be doing?”

Before I could hold myself back, I felt my hands gripping his own and stopping his motion. Through all the years that I knew him, I’ve never seen him break apart before my eyes like this. And for an even bizarre reason that I can’t explain, it was hurting me to let him be this way.

“Aiden,” I said in a stern tone, “You loved her, the world knew that and so did I. I was happy for you but I’m sure you figured out that she never felt the same way about you. The Alice you knew wasn’t the same girl you fell for. She changed, Aiden, and she threw the life she had with you for some loser. Don’t cry for her more than you already have.”

“I know, Lea but it really hurts. Why didn’t anybody tell me that it would hurt?” He laughed dryly yet his eyes still held too much emotions that I had to look away. This time, my usual smart mouth didn’t have the answers he was looking for. [END]

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11 February 2020

🧁 I'm a February Baby 🧁

2/11/2020 13 Comments

I celebrated my birthday not too long ago and it somehow transformed into a full week of birthday surprises and wonderful gifts. If you've been around my blog long enough, you probably noticed that I just about rarely talk about my birthday because a) I don't really celebrate it, b) because I don't hype it up, nobody knows and finally, c) I haven't planned out how my initial responses will be if I got surprised with a celebration for me. Am I supposed to burst into tears? Smile until my cheeks hurt? I mean, is there a guidebook on ''HOW TO REACT REASONABLY TO A ONCE IN A BLUE MOON BIRTHDAY SURPRISE FOR YOU"??? Turns out that this year was a little different and I'm showered with surprises left and right for at least 2-3 days straight.

I had wonderful birthday gifts this year including a poetry book from my all time favourite poet, Atticus whose book is called "The Truth About Magic", a super pretty velvety blouse from my roomie, a silky beautiful grey baju kurung, chocolates and snacks, and cutie birthday cards. I didn't think of what I wanted this year but the precious people in my life seem to know exactly what to get for me. There were also slices of tasty birthday cakes thrown into my surprises and with that, ladies and gentleman, my cravings for cakes have been fueled to the max to last me for the rest of the year. I'll never again ask more cakes... But I mean, we will just have to see how far that perseverance will last.

We managed to gather some of our close friends in our masters degree batch to a dinner and had a quick catching up session. Most have already completed their masters and are either working or searching for a job. I'm so proud of them and the stories we brought to the table!! Laughing till my stomach exploded is a complete understatement.
Location: Serai @ Jaya Shopping Centre

I received two EXQUISITE boxes of clothes this year with one containing a pretty rusty orange blouse. It feels so soft and velvety to the touch with a cute bow at the waist. I'll wear this for LIFE. It's the most adorable blouse I own now. HAHAHA And the second one like I mentioned earlier is a silky grey baju kurung that I was oggling at for the past year. I wore both outfits during my dinners and events that I had last week. Thank youuuuu to the two precious people in my life for these precious gifts. You know who you are! <3

Accompanying the blouse, my roomie also arranged for a surprise birthday cake with a red squiggly birthday wish for me. The Secret Recipe waiter had lit a candle that was on the cake and sang a birthday song. MY FACE WAS ON FIRE. I didn't know if it was because of all the attention I was getting or the huge weird smile permanently plastered to my face, but I was soooo happy! I ate the rest of my cake and dinner till I felt like I was going to explode for the second day in a row.

I was also gifted with a beautiful book from an even more beautiful soul who understood my deep love for poetry. I had almost forgotten that Atticus's third book is now published and simply WAITING for me to get my hands on it. Thank YOU for this present! I know it'll be sitting faithfully at my bedside for weeks until I've memorised my favourite poems in the book.

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Happy Birthday to all February babies out there! I hope your birthday in 2020 is a blast!

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