Lilypie - Pregnancy

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

[our home]

Since I've been getting requests to see our house, here goes... (click on images to see them bigger)













As you can see, I'm very bo liao...so I have time to do these things..haha :P
We actually got the sofa, tv table and kitchen cabinets second hand...all for under $800. Cool huh..heh. Well I like how we managed to find matching sets like the sofa and the tv table, and the kitchen cabinets go really well with the wall. Love how the walls are painted in vibrant colours too. We didn't expect the bedroom furniture to be so huge but they literally scaled it up from the "queen size" one we saw...which explains our huge headboard (if u can stretch ur imagination a lil haha). Love our home!! Oh and forgot to caption: caught the Honda in its full glory, cos hubby rarely sends it for washing haha. And even this time, it was cos of my coercion hehehe. He has a point actually, there's not much point in washing it regularly cos with the amount of sand/dust here and with his car being black, it got dirty by the fourth day..bleah. I shall just admire it in this pic where it looks really sexy...haha.

[one month]

"Let's celebrate tomorrow with a dinner!"
"Why? Because I survived one month here?"
"No, to celebrate our one month together."

Ah, as you can see, we have different ideas about my one month here heh.
  • I've gotten used to my monochrome scenery (black & white clothes, sandy coloured buildings) , but I still forget to put on my abaya sometimes (before leaving the house that is).

  • I've gotten used to the well-conceived huge shopping malls and giant hypermarkets, but I can't come to terms that that will be my main form of entertainment outside the house for awhile.

  • I've gotten used to watching movie after movie at home, and now that we have a TV & DVD player, we don't have to be in our room all the time; but as before, I still feel that I'm wasting my time away when I'm watching a movie at home.

  • I like trying new recipes but I miss the taste of that particular chilli and tamarind that I use to make a really good sambal.

  • I love the winter but my skin is getting really really dry.

  • I know I should be making new friends, but I so so miss the ones I left.

  • I love the time I spend with my husband, but beneath that, I still (literally) dream of Sg every night since I've been here. If dreams are a reflection of what you yearn for, boy is that a strong indication.

It's been a month and I miss my family and friends terribly. I hope I get used to living abroad, cos this month sure wasn't easy. But yes I shall trudge on. Thanks honey for being patient with my homesickness, and for looking after me so well.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

[a new beginning]

It'll be two weeks tomorrow since I left my comfort zone. Wow. Seems longer than that..haha. Today was also the "official" day I started work, though I'm still working from home now (yeah yeah I know, I'm supposed to be WORKing right now..hehe).

How has life been? Well for starters, it was great that we got to celebrate our 5th month together, together. Like, finally. Things have been moving pretty fast. In the first few days I was here, we were busy setting up the house. And in Mr F's efficient shopping style, we managed to buy almost all the things we need for our house - from the sofa set to dining table to kitchen cabinets and stove. So efficient right? Haha. I was so drained by the end of it, by Thur that week I was like, ok, we seriously need to take a break on Fri (esp since Mr F was gonna start work on Sat). Must say the one week off for Eid was a Gbless since we finished so many things then. Now we're only left with a TV and DVD player, which upon my "nagging", F agreed to getting on his next pay. Hehe.

How's the apartment? It's a nice two bedroom apt...tho I can't say much about the living room. It's so tiny we decided to be a little creative, by making the 2nd bedroom into the living room instead, and leaving the current living room to be our dining place. Otherwise, the house is great - bedrooms are big, toilets are alright. We're proud to finally say we have a HOME. (Though not proud enough to invite people yet, that will be done once my cooking skills improve haha).


apt from outside. ours is at the 9 o'clock position

How's Riyadh? Well, to be honest the city looks better than I expected. Neat roads and housing, clean and a little green (how green can desert country get right? heh) and good buildings. But that being said, reality struck in on the very first night here - we were waiting 20 mins at a pizza place, and the waiter finally comes with 2 boxes of pizza. Why? It was a "singles restaurant" i.e. only men allowed to dine there. When F asked if we could stay and eat since there was no one there, the waiter said it wasn't a problem for them, but if the religious police came by, we were the ones who would be in trouble. And so, our first dinner was in his car. Welcome to Saudi... As if that wasn't annoying enough, the next day we tried 2 places for lunch, both were "singles" restaurants, and finally one filipino directed us to McDonald's cos "that's the only place here that has family section". I was like wow, I came all the way here to eat McD??? Bleah. To top it off, the cubicles we sat in had "curtains" so that we could get more privacy "enclosed". Even at food courts there's a cordoned off section for "families" (i.e. women/families) by high walls. Hmmmm. I shall not dwell further on this. I've just told F to make sure he knows where "family restaurants" are so that I don't have to get pissed off everytime we're rejected from some place. Brrr. It's also annoying that I can't go out without Mr F cos there is virtually no public transport here other than taxis (or I can walk of course), but right now, I don't think I dare to take taxis yet. It's not that they aren't safe, it's just cos the cabbies don't speak much English. It's a lil overwhelming knowing you have to be so dependent on someone. Sigh...


"family restaurant" cubicle with an accordian style door for more privacy


one thing i can't complain about is the excellent malls they have - here's one with a safari themed deco




my monochrome life has started....

How's work? Work's great. I've got very flexible bosses who let me work from home, partly cos they don't have a permanent office yet. As you can see, I don't think that's a very good option for me cos I get distracted...haha. They're very warm and friendly, a far cry from what I imagined them to be - big burly strict men lol. Spent the last few days at work being introduced to the 2 hospitals I will be in touch with and I must say that people here are very friendly. Never did I enter a room where people were not smiling. And Dr A is so popular that the nurses just greet him fervently as he was rushing me along corridoors bringing me place to place, promising me that I'll definitely get lose in the place when I was there on my own lol. I was apparently employed because of my high-standing coming from NUS (they look up to NUS) and cos I have experience writing manuscripts. I was like wow, in SG the few papers I wrote would've been nothing, but over here they were impressed. Good for me anyway, I can pretend that I'm super brilliant. The research prospects sounds promising, and hopefully I can get to dabble in some of the things they suggested.

And the most popular question of all...How is my REAL married life? Now that I really have one..haha. It's been great I must say. We didn't fight for a record amount of time (we seemed to fight almost every other day online for all sorts of petty reasons...I attribute the fighting to miscommunications that occur while being in a long-distance relationship). Mr F has been extremely supportive, especially when I've been feeling very homesick (I miss you all so much!!). He's also helpful around the house, which is so great since I hate doing housework (alone)! We're still getting used to each others quirks (like he has to put up with the noises I make while stretching in the morning lol, I have to put up with his running to the PC the moment he wakes up...prob a habit he inculcated when he woke up at 5am daily to chat with me heh).

Guess that's all to update for now. Hope more exciting things pop up for me to update heh. See ya!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

[till we meet again]

Will be off to start my new life in approx 12 hours time. The time has finally come...wow. The past few weeks have zoomed by, with lots of things at work needed to be tied up (with my darling prof who loves to give more work when someone is leaving..gah), meeting up with friends and packing.

The goodbyes have been bittersweet. I'm really touched that so many friends wanted to meet up, even a few who haven't been in constant contact. I've also probaby put on a lot of weight cos I've been eating and eating and eating, treats or otherwise lol. Have also become a lil thick skinned: when ppl say they wanna treat I'll gladly accept instead of refusing. Haha. This is in light of the fact that I've been going out almost every single day, and dining isn't very cheap. Plus since I'm the "VIP", it doesn't hurt to be treated like one..hahaha :P

Definitely gonna miss my friends - they've been there for me a lot. Please keep in touch online, I still need you around. You guys rock my world! Can't say yet when I'll be back for hols, but hopefully we'll meet again soon.

To my darling Auntie, cousin, sis...gonna miss u lots n lots n lots. Don't be stingy with sending overseas sms k? What's 15 cents compared to lonely me right? Hehe. I shall be back in Singapore one day, with a vengeance.. ;)

This is it....

Friday, November 06, 2009

[This Is It!]

The clock is ticking fast. Can't believe 3 weeks ago I booked tix for MJ's movie, and tmr we're gonna watch it. There I was thinking, that's still a long way to go. 3 weeks have past, and the next 3 weeks will probably zoom by too. Yikes!

Things seem to be happening really smoothly. From worrying about whether MB would get the visa done on time (2 weeks all in all instead of the month we expected), to wondering whether the freaking expensive shit test results would be done on time (8 days instead of the 4 weeks they warned me about), to worrying [again] whether the Saudi embassy over here would process it fast enough since they're busy processing Haj visas now (so much for the delay, they did it within 2 days instead of 3 lol). I even found my flimsy luggage bag! Now I don't have to worry about an empty bag which in itself weighs about 5kg, taking up 1/4 of my valuable luggage allowance! The universe really wants me to go lol.

And as Auntie said, wow, it's getting more and more real...I'm leaving soon!!!

Visa - Check
Air ticket - Check
Luggage bag - Check
Packing - Pending hehe (hardworking me has already started tho :P)
Meeting up with family/friends before I leave - In process

And most exciting of all...
Apartment - Check! Can't believe we finally have a place to call our own, even if it's temporary. It's a new apartment so that's a big bonus, equidistance from both our work places...MB really put in a lot of effort into finding the perfect place *muaks*. Can't wait to start furnishing and decorating it...wee!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

[lesson kept!]

I thought I learnt my lesson when I watched "The Time Traveler's Wife" after reading the book. But no, I rushed to finish "My Sister's Keeper" before watching the movie too. And boy was I disappointed again. I guess I've gotten used to little details getting changed, such as how Campbell's long lost girlfriend Julia was totally excluded from the movie. But this was like...they changed the entire ending! Gah! Wonder why they did that - perhaps so that the masses would like it, a predictable ending. I do think though that the audience would've been more surprised at the original ending in the book. At least I was. And no, not that I like the original ending anyway. So painful. I didn't cry while reading the book, nor at the movie (only teared at the scene where they went to the beach). Surprising, since I'm an emo person..haha. Or maybe I'm currently only allergic to romantic tear-jerkers, for reasons that are obvious..heh.

Told Sakura never to let me watch book-movies after reading the books again. End of!

Friday, October 30, 2009

[sunset]

yay! decided that since i have tons of photos, i should upload one of my own as my background. since i absolutely love sunsets, and this is one of the most current ones i took from kerala, decided to put it up. pretty!

p.s. silly me didn't host the previous background myself. ah well, i used to be html stupid. not that i'm that smart now...but at least i know how to change my background...haha

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

[resigned]

Resigned to fate?

Well I'm not exactly sure.

But it seems God has some plans for me. And it's time to move on. Literally and figuratively.

I've resigned from my job as of today, officially. In what seems as a sudden move, even to me, I'll be leaving what I've called home for the past 27 years, to a distant land, to venture into new things.

Why the sudden move? Well, I shall let reasons be known when the time is right. Right now may be a little premature to announce things. And no, I'm not pregnant.

How am I feeling?
A little pensive about leaving a great workplace where I've been showered with care that I did not expect for the past 4 years.
A little melancholic that I'll be leaving family and friends behind.
A little disappointed that my stranger of a family has expressed almost no indication of missing me, save for my sister, aunt and cousin (I guess I shouldn't be too picky).

Unfortunately I have a very realistic husband who tells me the melancholia will get worse, instead of comforting me that things will be alright. It's not exactly what I need to hear right now. Sigh.

But I am also feeling...
Happy that I've been given a new opportunity, and so soon at that InshaAllah.
Excited about things to come.
Delighted that I'll finally be able to be with my husband.

Though I haven't bought the plane ticket yet, the date should be 29 Nov. So that I can fly off after a dear friend's wedding.

Am I ready?

I guess you can never know when you're fully ready. But it feels right, taking the plunge. God please guide me.

P.S. On a totally different note, gah, my blog pic is gone! Ery, where are u when I need u? Haha. Gotta find a new skin soon. Wow, talk about changes!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

[gone too soon]

First it was MJ, now him. Someone closer to heart. It was more of shock than sadness when I heard the news. 33 - so young. Somehow it makes it more real seeing the Boyz carrying his coffin. And when Ronan broke down during the eulogy...sigh... I had a few friends who said this news reminded them of me, how I used to be so crazy over him. Well I've gotten over him, but it's still sad that someone so talented, someone I grew up listening to, someone so young, will no longer be able to share his passion with the world. Truly a star who faded a way to soon. Life is fragile. You'll be missed. Stephen Patrick David Gately - 17.03.76-11.10.09 (Ha I still rem his birthdate :P)




Stephen Gately's Boyzone bandmates have paid tribute to the singer at his funeral in Dublin.

Boyzone's Ronan Keating sobbed as he told mourners at St Laurence O'Toole Church that the world had lost one of its greatest stars.

He said: "We have lost our brother and I've lost my wing man. He will live on in our songs and whenever us four are together his spirit is alive. For Stephen we'll carry on, but it will never be the same without him. A beautiful man who is now the perfect angel. Forever young and never forgotten."

Keating and the remaining bandmates Mikey Graham, Shane Lynch and Keith Duffy joined family, neighbours and celebrity friends for the emotional farewell.

Around 3,500 fans listened outside as Keating, Duffy and Graham remembered their friend before singing together in a musical tribute.

Boyzone's manager Louis Walsh said: "Stephen was one of life's positive people with a lovely nature and he was someone who always had a smile on his face.

"He loved to laugh and joke and was always the life and soul of the party and would give everyone he met his time."

Gately was found dead last Saturday after a night out with his partner Andrew Cowles and friend Georgi Dochev on the holiday island of Majorca.

A post-mortem examination found he died from natural causes, the medical report recording pulmonary oedema or fluid on the lungs.

His body was flown home on a private plane with Mr Cowles and the remaining Boyzone members, who have had tattoos in honour of Gately with the letter "S" and dates "76 09" etched on their skin. (ITN)

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

[stompin' stompin'!]

1 hr and 50 mins of sheer entertainment! Wow! All these years of waiting really paid of, I finally got to watch STOMP yesterday. I was amazed at the amount of energy these guys had - they were literally bouncing around on stage hammering, pounding, tap dancing every second of the show. The moves were very well choreographed and the beats were very catchy. My fave performances were when they swung from the high wall of pots and pans and started drumming...the sound was so good that it sounded like real instruments; and when they did their signature broom stick and stomping-on-garbage cans bit we see in cinemas at the start of movies. I was also impressed at how each performance ended with a punch, sometimes expected, most of the times with a nice twist. Ah and of course, the crowd's fave "fat guy" who was the comedian of the night. When I read that the show was going to be funny, I was wondering how it could be made funny, and I certainly didn't expect it to be this hilarious, so yep, a really great job done. Engaging the audience was also a nice bit since we found out how uncoordinated we are in clapping according to rhythm lol. The lead also had a LOT of stamina, rarely saw him going in for a (long) break, maybe only during one segment of the show. Was also thinking that boy, they must be really fit to do all that stomping and banging and hitting non-stop. We also discovered new "instruments" that could be banged on, including kitchen sinks and giant rubber tyres..haha (tho din really enjoy the bit with the metal chairs especially when they dragged it on the wooden floor...eeks..luckily no goosebumps :P). Oh, and we were so enthralled by it all, that we hardly noticed that 1.5 hours had passed when they tried to do their "we're done with the show" stunt. I was so much in disbelieve I even took out my phone to check the time lol. And they didn't even have any intermission! Luckily they came back out and gave us their last round of stomping. GH and I were so into the beats that we wished it lasted longer. Definitely a worthwhile show!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

[phuket hunger]

For some reason, ever since returning, I've been craving for all sorts of (unhealthy) food. Mee goreng, chocolates, pizza, tapioca chips, all things spicy, etc. It's not like I didn't eat in Phuket...though we didn't have very regular meals. And now I'm hungry all the time. And guess what? Mr F feels it too! Hmmm did Phuket put a hungry spell on us? Hahaha. Strange...

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

[you're my saving grace]




Remember those walls I built
Well, baby they're tumbling down
And they didn't even put up a fight
They didn't even make up a sound

I found a way to let you in
But I never really had a doubt
Standing in the light of your halo
I got my angel now

It's like I've been awakened
Every rule I had you breakin'
It's the risk that I'm takin'
I ain't never gonna shut you out

Everywhere I'm looking now
I'm surrounded by your embrace
Baby I can see your halo
You know you're my saving grace

You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo

Hit me like a ray of sun
Burning through my darkest night
You're the only one that I want
Think I'm addicted to your light

I swore I'd never fall again
But this don't even feel like falling
Gravity can't forget
To pull me back to the ground again

Feels like I've been awakened
Every rule I had you breakin'
The risk that I'm takin'
I'm never gonna shut you out

Everywhere I'm looking now
I'm surrounded by your embrace
Baby I can see your halo
You know you're my saving grace

You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
Halo, halo

Everywhere I'm looking now
I'm surrounded by your embrace
Baby I can see your halo
You know you're my saving grace

You're everything I need and more
It's written all over your face
Baby I can feel your halo
Pray it won't fade away

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo

I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo
I can feel your halo halo halo
I can see your halo halo halo

- Sasha Fierce

Monday, September 28, 2009

[i hate holidays because...]

...at the end of it, you have to return to reality. Which in my case sucks.

But still, I shall cherish the wonderful week I had with my hubby in Phuket. It was a different kind of Eid for sure, prancing around in less clothes than usual and doing wild things like visiting a go-go bar (and more hehe). Was contemplating if I should spend my "last" Eid with my family but when you live with a family of strangers who doesn't bother to fetch you from the airport after being away for a month (re: my India trip) nor ask how the experience was, I decided that spending time with someone who loves me (and shows it evidently) was more worth it.
........................................................Maya Beach

Phuket is just beautiful. The beaches are amazing - clear waters and creamy sand. Maya Beach (where Leo's "The Beach" was shot) was just awesome, with the majestic cliffs and emerald waters dominating the scenery. Though I do think Phi Phi island is a little over-rated because it wasn't THAT fantastic and the snorkeling a lil disappointing. Ah but still, can't believe that I got to snorkel with my baby - point being I got to enjoy something I love with someone I love. The feeling is great. The company was also great (Mr F and friend) - was a little worried at first that Mr R would be a little "extra" but we got along great and he knew when to disappear lol. Pics of pretty Phuket can be found here.
We cheated and said we were on our honeymoon, hence the prettily decorated bed...well it was kinda honeymoon #2 anyway hehehe.

And to top of the already fantastic week I had, I got to see Beyonce in concert at the F1 Rocks concert on Sat. It was a grueling wait after Black Eyed Peas performed - Miss Diva was the last item of the day at 12am, and this was after we started queueing at 2pm for the concert that started at 5pm so that we could be near the stage! But it was all worth it when she stepped on stage - the crowd went totally wild and she was totally awesome. We were pretty close to the stage so we got to see her upclose..wee. Her performance was really impressive and I must give it to her that she not only sings well but entertains her crowd with all her dance moves every step of the way. A talent for sure. And very sexy ;)

Right now I could die happy.



My fave song of the night. Beyonce was like, ok now this is a test of my true fans...luckily I knew the lyrics lol. And she was so touched when the whole lot of us sang along. Nice!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

[chronologically impaired]

Watched The Time Traveler's Wife yesterday with my fave bunch of girls. Who knew on a weekday night at 7pm there would be so many cinema goers, so my carefully thought out plan of breaking fast in the cinema went to nowhere (ah how exciting it would've been lol). Totally forgot it was school hols so I guess that made things worse...I wasn't the only one who was exclaiming after finding out there were only single seats left. And of course Auntie will not be letting me forget my mistake about not booking tix for a long time to come since she's working AM shift today, so I decided I shall only watch movies with the two girls since they know how to let things go...hahaha. At least we ended up having a decent break fast at Pastamania (mmmm) and continued our gluttony at McCafe to kill time - lots of it - since our 7.25 movie became 9.40.

[warning...may contain spoilers]
The movie was good - if you haven't read the book. I was so excited about the book becoming a movie and since Sakura has been highly recommending it even before there was news of it becoming a movie, I picked it up finally and amazingly completed it within one week, something I haven't done in a long while. Unfortunately like most novel-turned-movies [think Harry Potter..gah], the movie was less than satisfying. And since I'd just finished reading the book, I could recall little details which left me quite unsated with some of the storyline. Not only did they change several facts - like how Henry's mum died, how Clare finally managed to conceive or how Clare (did not in the book) became as frustrated as she was about her time traveling husband - they even left out a lot of other important struggles/relationships that could've made the movie much richer e.g. Henry's desperate attempt to find a cure for himself such that he even resorts to taking not-yet-existent medication or his relationship with his psycho ex-girlfriend. I also felt that the significant image where he shouted out for Clare when he got shot left out what would have been a very heartbreaking and touching and mysterious scene all at once. Frankly speaking, if Australia managed to be 3 hours long despite it being very draggy because of the lack of a very captivating and unpredictable plot, there would have been no harm extending this movie to at least 2.5 hours since the storyline itself was interesting. Even the script was a little simple and cheesy at times, and the overall feel was that the story had been made into just a romance thing.

It did however succeed in making 3 out of 4 of us girls sob especially at the end of it (one girl being someone who can't show much emotion even when sad...hahahaha...don't kill me Jam :P). Auntie and Jam didn't find it too confusing though Jam cheated and kept asking Sakura which Henry (past or future) appeared heh. So as I said, it's a great movie to watch if you haven't read the book even if it's just for eye candies Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams. Told Sakura that the moral of the story is to not marry a time-traveler, and used that piece of advice for Jam too lol. Reading the book and watching the movie made me miss MB even more; though I'm grateful that for us, we don't time-travel, it's just distance-travel that's keeping us apart. Hopefully that will change soon, in 4-5 months to be exact. And we also have end of this month to look forward to...yay! =)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

[Happy Ramadan]


How can I not feel touched by this simple message from my FIL. I take comfort in the fact that even tho my MIL is cold towards me for no reason (or at least reasons reflecting her own insecurities and nothing on my doing), I have a terrific FIL who not only makes me feel welcomed in my new family, but also showers so much love on me/both of us as an item. Thanks Abbah :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

[oh sweet honey(moon)]

I initially wanted to paste my honeymoon "review" which I wrote for MB here but since it's 6 pages long, here's the summary heh.

It's a perfect honeymoon when you're with the person you love and the sights are lovely. And that's exactly what I got on our trip to Kerala. All the rooms were fantastic, quaint and pretty in their own ways. The sightseeing started out a lil rough in Cochin but it got better and better. The peak point, thanks to my hubby's careful planning, was the drive to the mountains in Munnar where we saw acres and acres of lush forested slopes. I had told him before the trip that I wanted 3 things - waterfalls, houseboat, treehouse and true to his word, in no time we came to the first and best waterfall along the way to our mountain top resort. Natural scenery just fascinates me so I was staring and staring and staring into the horizon.

Next came the ultimate best part of the trip - Munnar. Not only was our beside-the-waterfall resort brilliant, the sightseeing to the national park which was up in the clouds made the trip perfect. I was thanking God for giving me so much blessing to be able to enjoy such a lovely place with my darling. And I truly truly truly appreciated it because in my recent adventures abroad I've been thinking - if only I were here with the one, and here I was, staring at the majestic mountains with my hubby beside me. It was almost paradise.

The next promise my hubby kept was about the houseboat. That was a different adventure in itself, with us covering the vastness of the lagoon around Kerala and trying to sleep in a boat. Water seemed to be the theme of our honeymoon, with the waterfalls n lake n such. And to add to that, we stayed on an island resort the second last nite, which needed a little boat to get us there. We couldn't do the treehouse because it was monsoon seasons and we didn't wanna risk breaking our limbs on our honeymoon, so F made up for it with a beach resort at our last stop. Not that there was much of a beach, cos the monsoon tides practically covered all the sand at our resort's beach lol. We did manage to find a beach nearby too, so that completed our water adventure. Oh and might I add to that the food in Kerala is yummyyyyy, especially the one served in Munnar.


So all in all, I must admit that I initially did not think much of a honeymoon "just" in Kerala, I was very pleasantly surprised and do not regret a single moment of it. Thank you honey for planning such a great trip for us. I really felt like a princess that week especially since you took care of everything, from planning right down to the execution of the littlest details. Looking forward to our time in Greece next year =)

Of course my adventures are never complete with lots of photographs so enjoy them here!

Friday, August 14, 2009

[On the wedding and such]

I'm back! It's been slightly more than a month now and since things have finally began to settle down, just thought I'd pen down a few thoughts about the wedding.

Before:
Had an amazing one week with F when he came. Although it was chop-chop do this and that since we had last minute things to do for the wedding, we were pretty efficient with things. The biggest hurdle was the marriage registration statutory declaration and thank God everything went smoothly there. Next came our wedding course which was really a good thing because we not only learned about the roles of husband/wife in Islam, but also got our personality typed by the psychologist who then gave us an insight to each other's characters and where we had strengths being together and where we have to be mindful/compromise when the need arises. Expensive course since it was intensive and private, but definitely worth it. We went off beaming after that :). We had a very well-deserved break in JB and I'm glad we did that cos the week of running errands had been very hectic.

The wedding:
F & PIL came over to our house the night before the wedding for Henna Nite and thankfully again everything went smoothly (almost). I must say I wasn't planning for a big occasion but mum invited my uncle and auntie's families so in the end dad even catered food for 30 people. The wedding morning I was really excited, started doing my room up as I'd planned. Point to note, won't do everything myself next time..tiring! Not that there'll be a next time...maybe next time there's another party..haha. Haha. Even Uncle Aziz who came early to help us with odds and ends was saying I should've called my bridesmaids over earlier to help out. But I didn't wanna trouble u girls since you were helping me out so much already. Things started getting livelier around 2 when Yatee (make-up) artist started doing her stuff, people started coming, etc. They asked me if I was nervous, I was like nah...just excited heh.

About the actual thing, everything happened pretty fast (except my driver's 10km/h drive to the mosque (gasp!)...and 30km/h subsequent drives to the CC etc...he was worried about ruining prof's car lol). The moment we went into the mosque, someone was like..come up come up, kadi (solemniser) is ready. Within minutes the process started. He didn't even ask me if I consented to the wedding before asking me to sign...maybe he knew how eager we were lol (did I mention he conducted our marriage prep course...and was of course impressed by us..hahaha...that was a nice coincidence and a great honour bcos he is such a sweet and knowledgable guy...very likeable). Then it was Farooq's turn to say his statement that he accepts the nikah (marriage)... At that moment i was like..wow, finally, and not surprisingly I got a lil emo. Jam noticed and Yatee came to my rescue with a tissue lol.


The reception was the fun part of course. I felt like a princess when Uncle Aziz came to open the car door for me. When I stepped out, Uncle Latiff was like saying to F, wow now u really have a Hyderabadi wife cos of the outfit I was wearing lol. Walking in the 4kg sharara was bloody tough, and I was clinging on to F really tightly. I might've stepped on the skirt a few times, but luckily I didn't trip (very noticably at least :P). My fave part of weddings is usually the kompang (drums) so when they were ushering me up the stairs, I was like wow, this is my turn heh. Felt really good seeing familiar faces, and faces whom I hadn't seen in awhile. It's a great feeling to know that such friends and family bothered to come to grace the occasion. I was honoured really. Ah and I should mention too that I was very happy and excited when ppl started throwing petals at us...exactly how I imagined it to be...if not more fun heh.

There were of course lots and lots of photos to take, our own and with guests who were like soooo reluctant about coming on stage to take them (initially at least...DJ had to prompt some ppl to come up). F was complaining about the funny positions Bro Ismail made us do, but I think we look good in the final product heh.

The highlight to me (then again everything was a highlight to me lol) was the 2nd march in, where I was finally wearing my gorgeous purple princess gown. Tho it didn't turn out exactly how I wanted it to be, it was brilliantly dazzling nevertheless. Seeing the smiling faces and hearing the praises about how good we looked really made my day (or evening), and seeing the bubbles plus petals effect completed my perfect idea of a march in. Again, both of us were grinning big time as we marched down the isle. I should add my ex-colleague's description of my outfits here, which sounds really sweet (I love the last line...nice way of describing things):

"...So of course it brought me great happiness to see her wedding pulled off so successfully without a glitch. And she was so gorgeous, her gowns each bringing out a different feel to her grand entrances. From sweet and demure, to breath-takingly stunning, to majestically princessy."


Everyone was so excited about the purple dress that I had to postpone the cake-cutting a little till we finished taking photos with them. The cake was as gorgeous as I imagined it to be too, and the swarovski-studded toppers added the perfect touch of glamour to it (unfortunately my mum didn't save them after cutting the cake for the guests...gah).

My overall feelings: Alhamdulillah it was a pretty successful event. There was a minor glitch which I didn't even know about till after the wedding, which I'm grateful to those concerned for holding it back from me as I'd requested so that I could enjoy the moment. Though some plans were changed or didn't turn out as I had planned (like my darling parents didn't wear the outfits I had made for them..bleah; my bridesmaids didn't turn up in baby blue/lilac..small matter since they were such dolls heh; F didn't get to sit on the pretty mat for the nikah cos they were so chop chop about starting it; the unexpected silat performance which my uncle thought I wanted...hope the guy wasn't too unprepared for that impromptu request; the dais which was more elaborate than I wanted it to be...stubborn decor person lol but anyway the deco received lots of compliments; the favours were given out by hand even tho I didn't wanna trouble anyone with that tedious job; our post-march in song (Heaven) had a glitch...later found out there were some problems with the sound system at first) - it didn't really matter cos I'm not a bridezilla and at the end of the day, like F said, what was important was that we got married. What was also important was that I was blessed that so many of my dear friends, especially all my bridesmaids [Hello Panda girls: you rawk!, Is & GH: I know I can really count on u!, CY & Ruth: loved the bubbles and petals!!, and of course my darling sister who altho was hardly present pre-wedding, really stood by me on that day] and everyone else who helped us one way or another. Thanks so much to Auntie for your help wayyyyyy before the wedding...I couldn't have done it without u! Some pleasant surprises came such as when Prof Chia lent me his Volvo AND paid for the driver...making my ideal bridal car dream come true at a fraction of the price albeit at the last minute when I was about to settle for something else after my hopes were dashed so many times (of course I have "thick-skinned" GH to thank for that heh), Uncle Aziz (whom I don't think I've had much interaction with before this) offered us lots of help (especially with his vehicles) just one week before the wedding, which turned out to be a great great help. And of course, most importantly, thank you Allah for blessing the day, and blessing me with such a loving, understanding and responsible husband.

As if all that weren't great enough, another bonus came when we checked into Amara Sanctuary @ Sentosa at the end of the day. We had booked a basic room but were pleasantly surprised when they upgraded us to a Courtyard Suite (only realised it when they gave us a form to sign about "conditions on staying in a suite/villa lol). The room had my favourite poster bed with the mosquito net thingy, and after some exploration, F found a semi-open air private jacuzzi in a little garden at the back of our room. Ahhhh, talk about the perfect setting to our perfect start ;). Worth every penny. Even our transport to the room was a bridal buggie, complete with floral decorations heh.

I shall relish in these moments before I think about what to write about our next great moments - our honeymoon. =)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

[love you anyway]

I'm a bit late...Boyzone had their reunion last year in Ireland, and are still touring UK (I wanna go!!) and I only discovered their return a couple of months ago. They went to Taiwan but they didn't come here hmpf. They look..well..they've got receding hairlines now haha, but must say, they still look fit. Their singing has improved, with Ronan's voice training and Stephen's dabbling in musicals. Am still a bit disappointed that Ronan is leading so much in the latest single (give Steve a chance!!)...hope the rest of the album doesn't go that way. And maybe I'm not drooling as much as before, but I still find them cute haha. Once a fan, always a fan...I love you anyway! ;)

Here's the first single of their latest album...hope it comes to Singapore! Poor quality vid tho..sigh (ignore the first minute of chatter heh).





For some reason, can't find a non-sped up version of the music video..so I'll put this up for the time being..gah. They look cute dancing haha...tho erm..this sped up version makes them look..well..like they're doing funny things lol.




Can I start asking for b'day prezzies? I want this!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

[July's schedule]

The things I have to do to get my family's involvement. Hopefully after this, they won't ask me for the 101th time what is happening on which day.

Friday, June 05, 2009

[angels & demons]

I was drooling. And I was excited. So yep, it was a good movie and I didn't regret watching it. It was even better than Da Vinci Code, and although I only vaguely remembered the storyline (I've supposedly read the book...but my memory sucks haha), I was suddenly jolted at who the "bad guy" really was. Some of the scenes were a bit gross...but ya...I guess...seeing images is gross-er than reading a book and imagining things (well at least, good thing I didn't imagine things so vividly...especially how the first cardinal died..yikes...). I still think Tom Hanks doesn't suit the role of Robert Langdon...but oh well.

I had forgotten that Ewan McGregor was acting in it as the Camerlengo so it was a pleasant re-surprise. Haha. Haven't watched him in ages, I think the last one I saw him in was The Island a really really long time ago. Had wanted to catch him in Miss Potter but didn't get a chance. He looked hot in the erm..robe (?) thing he was wearing...ah but he looks hot anytime. That coupled with his accent...mmmm. Even GH was drooling at the end of it. Looks like I was drooling even in the last post of him....which got me thinking....

I don't want male strippers at my hen party, but if you girls can get me either him or Johnny Depp, I think I'll be the happiest hen-ee ever..hahaha :P

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

[extraordinary!]

We won! We won! We took part in some random bridal contest and got the consolation prize...under the category for 30 Most Interesting Couple Photos. We were aiming for the grand prize of under the "Win an ExtraOrdinary Wedding" where we had to write what our dream wedding was. Guess ours was too far-fetched so they were afraid they couldn't sponsor it lol (or so we consoled ourselves into thinking..haha). The story was what I posted previously. Ahh..still dreaming of that perfect wedding heh. We had come close to winning in some other competition - they even called me to verify details etc, and told me the judges liked our love story (woohoo!) and we were one of the top finalists but unfortunately they wanted both partners to be at least physically in Singapore (even if non-PR)..shucks. Still remember...cos I received the call at Ruth's wedding and I was like trying to convince them my fiance really exists, we just got engaged, I can send photos etc lol. Talk about disappointing..heh.

So anyway, MB said this is the first big thing he's won, so I'm happy for him (us too..haha). He did afterall, write up most of the dream wedding, even sourced for that lovely chateau pic, and suggested what pic to submit for the interesting couple pic contest. Thank u baby! Though seriously, I think since most of my planning is done, with the wedding being 1 month and 29 days away (closssse), don't think I have use for most of the vouchers. Only eyeing the SellHerOnline.com voucher (don't u think the webbie name sounds a bit scary??) Guess I'll give it away to a friend (Min u need? hehe) or sell it away online...hahaha.

Happy happy! =)

Saturday, May 02, 2009

[an artsy weekend]

From a tragic tale of love to a bunch of sensual cats prancing around on stage.

On Thur night, Sakura was my date to Romeo and Juliet by TNT Theatre Britain. If you haven't already guessed, I'm a sucker for British (stage) productions. It was shown in Jubi/lee hall at Raffles Hotel, and getting to that place alone was a wow-er. Being the suaku Singaporeans we are, we were awed when we stepped into one of our biggest national icons. Although we've seen the building from outside, the architecture was even more striking inside. That and the majestic chandeliers and facade made us feel we were in another century. As if that weren't amazing enough, the more we walked towards the hall, the more enthralled we got. No wonder MJ loved staying there lol. The theatre matched the atmosphere of the colonial building, with its perennial wooden interiors and imposing tall columns. We felt like we were instantly transported into a distant past, glorius nobles being entertained with a play at our own leisure.

The play itself was engaging, with a touch of humour and austere backdrops/props. The only part I didn't like was that it was in old English (talk about being transported back in time!) so I had a hard time understanding everything. I guess as long as I know Romeo & Juliet are from warring families and got married secretly so that they don't face the wrath of their families. Haha. I must say that Leo Dicaprio's version did ruin my image of how R&J should classically be. Sakura also mentioned she pictured Leo in several scenes. Heh. Juliet was really pretty I must say, although Romeo was ahem..disappointing. Haha. I told Sakura that moral of the story was: good thing we have handphones today, so that misunderstandings such as that wouldn't happen. She rolled her eyes of course. Lol.

Today's musical was a stark contrast with yesterday's - with the grand backdrop which Jam, being the *pro* (theatre student), said was very elaborate. Initially we thought our seats were too close in front (3rd row even though on the online plan it showed 5th row "E") , but as the show started, we were glad we were sitting there. We had upclose coverage of their expressions and I think that added to the grandeur of it. Once again, another Andrew Ll/oyd Web/ber musical has not failed to enthral me heh. Yes true, the plot content was almost absent (tho Jam pointed out the old cat and her "Memory" could be some sort of plot). But the brilliant orchestra, perfect delivery of skillful dance steps and humourous lines definitely made up for it. We were really impressed with the different genres of dance that were incorporated into the show, from disco to ballet to tap dancing...dancing was definitely a requirement to be in the show. There were interesting characters like the Magical Cat and erm the one we called "MJ" cat (dunno his real name lol), and the cats looked really sexy in their skin tight costumes. Well, the ladies at least; men in..ahem..skin tight spandex doesn't do very positively with me lol.

Ahh, I could really live the life of a tai-tai watching musicals every weekend lol (that's a bit much lah..maybe every month? haha). Defintely money well spent....too bad Sakura couldn't join us for CATS. Now GH and I are waiting for Mamma Mia to return. We've already "choped" each other to watch it. Haha.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

[when hope gets crushed]

I've given up hope, that things would be normal. I have a dysfunctional family, and I'm comforted in the fact that I'm not alone. Just that I haven't met many families as dysfunctional as mine perhaps.

You have shown me how involved you want to be with the wedding. Fine, I accept. I'd rather plan things myself actually, I'm independent.
You have shown me how you want to exert power over us. Monetary power according to you. So be it. Live in your own delusional world. I swear, if I didn't need to depend on you, you'd be the last person I'd ask for help, especially with this attitude of yours.
You have shown me how quick your attitude changes. How you flip flop your moods. At least now I know your true colours. I shall be nice, but I shall not let my guard down.
You, of all people, cut me deep when you said it's not all about me. If my lifeline tells me that, what hope do I have left that I'm not alone?

I've learnt from this experience that it's best to depend on yourself. You may be your worst critic, but you're also your best friend. When you let yourself down, at least you can do something to change things. That's not something you can do with others. For things to change, it must start with you.

I can only pray that the next phase of my life goes better. Hope. Should I still hope?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

[we can but dream]


***********
Picture a dreamy village in the south of France overlooking the Mediterranean sea. The morning sea mist is fading away slowly as the sun shines out brightly over a clear sky. The chateau overlooking the sea from its majestic cliff stands out from the green valley floor. And as far as the eye can see, it is greeted with a vista of unparalleled beauty and serenity. The well-manicured garden walls of the chateau overlooking the sea are bedecked in banners of alternate blue and lilac. The guests are seated in two rows of white chairs over which white colored pergola trained with green grapevines provides shade, leaving a narrow pathway in the middle for us to pass through. The bridesmaids dressed in lilac are standing on the right while the groomsmen dressed in sky blue are on the left. The groom comes in on a horse bedecked in blue, looking intoxicatingly charming in his dark blue intricately embroidered sherwani. The bride comes in on a single horse drawn carriage trailing with lilac streamers, dressed in the finest silk ivory gown, trails overflowing gracefully, fine hand-sewn crystals glistening under the gentle sun. her father takes her hand as she steps gracefully off the carriage, and they both walk arm in arm to the elegantly decorated white dais where he places her hand in the groom's. The ceremony then takes place while the sun shines cheerfully over the joyous day. As the solemnization finishes, the groom lifts up the bride's veil and kisses her. The guests cheer and at the same instant a dozen white doves are freed which creating a dreamy atmosphere. He then carries her into the chateau where the feast begins.

***********

Friday, April 24, 2009

[what kind of person?]

what kind of person...

...is so insecure

  • no one knows her real age, tho she claims she's young
  • she flounces herself (and her cleavage) around her (male) supervisor(s)
  • flirts with every single men in sight, even if they're less than half her age
  • goes all out making her colleagues miserable by complaining to their respective supervisors and/or dumping more work on them
  • is only happy when someone is as "miserable" as her
  • get jealous when those younger than her (i.e. less than ~45) have good things going in their life e.g. doing their PhDs/getting married, etc
  • compares a colleague getting an engagement ring/married to her buying herself a ring/being propositioned by a married guy respectively
  • gets upset when colleagues from the preceeding two points above join her "gang" for tea since they're probably seen as "competitors" to her

...is so conceited

  • she thinks the whole world revolves around her
  • she thinks she is right all the time
  • thinks her junior staff is her PA, making her run errands like collecting faxes and buying lunch for her
  • complains to the whole world how her boss is unfairly not promoting her (financially)
  • shouts at the very boss who has kept her in the job all these years while letting others go unfairly
  • asks her superiors to do things for her like throwing away her rubbish

...is so dishonest

  • she takes other people's hard work, deletes "done by: XX" and replaces it with her name
  • in doing the above, makes her superiors think "oh i'm so stomped with work yet i'm so capable since i did ALL this myself"
  • she spends half her office time on the phone complaining how life is so unfair, yet continues on with the above two points
  • she says different things in front of your face and behind your back

It's also sad that someone can be so...well...insecure. Obliviously self-destructive. So much so till everyone new who interacts with her sooner or later figures her out and realises what a "nice" person she really is.

It almost seems an undeserved honour that I'm blogging about her. All sorts of people exist in this world huh?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

[Happiness Is Only Ever Now]

"Few of us ever live in the present, we are forever anticipatingwhat is to come or remembering what has gone." - Louis L'Armor

Many pubs in the United Kingdom have an infamous sign hanging above the bar:

"Free Beer Tomorrow!"

It's funny because, of course, "tomorrow" never comes.

But when you think about it, how many of us truly live our lives like that?

We spend so much time thinking about the past, or contemplating the future, that we forget to live in the moment. We fail to realize that happiness can only EVER be now.

Let me give you an example.

You're driving through the city and your favourite song hits the radio. You're stuck in traffic, but loving the music - and you start to crazily sing along. You really get into it. You're in the moment. But then you catch a few jealous faces in nearby cars, and go all shy and timid.

Suddenly you're no longer living in the moment. You're wondering what they'll think about you. You're concerned they'll disapprove. You freeze up. Your happiness has gone, and your inhibition has arrived.

You're no longer in the moment, in the NOW - you're stuck thinking about wanting approval from these people, worried what they'll think of you outside that moment.

Try to catch yourself at some random point today - and just check what's on your mind. If you're like most people, you'll be somewhere other than here and now.

You'll be thinking about whether you made a good impression with that guy earlier today. You might be thinking the holiday you have planned for next September. Or how all of your problems will be solved this time next year.

You'll be anywhere but in the MOMENT. In fact, we each spend 95% of our time in the past or the future.

But here's the thing: Life is transient. The past has gone. The future is just a dream. The only time that truly exists ever is RIGHT NOW.

In other words, RIGHT NOW is the ONLY time you can do or change ANYTHING in your life.

You are only ever what exists in THIS MOMENT.So, are you HAPPY right now? Are you doing EVERYTHING you'd like to - and feeling THRILLED with life, as you read these words? If you're not, then make the decision to be happy.

NOW.

And if you'd like, put down this book, and go fly a kite. Or tell your partner that you love them. Or get your groovy flares on and head out to the nearby disco.

NOW is the only time you can change anything. And NOW is the only time you have.

So, make that simple decision - to be happy NOW.

Karl Moore - The 18 Rules of Happiness

Monday, April 13, 2009

[show me red]

I've been quiet. I've been thinking. I've been worrying.

Suddenly 3 months seems so close. 3 months till I marry the love of my life. 3 months till my month away from work (note: NOT a vacation..haha). 3 months till...

I can't help but feel a certain emptiness. The looming thought that I'll be away from the people that made me happy throughout my years of turmoil at home. The people who kept me going, who kept me laughing. My friends. I've seen friendships disappearing once people get married. New commitments, juggling a new home, family and in laws. What more if I'm gonna move away. Will the friends I counted on still be there when I'm back? Will things be like they always were?

It's a part of life my auntie says. True. Everyone's gonna go through it. In her blunt-but-tyring-to-cheer-me-up words: Better be the dumper than the dumpee. Not that I'm dumping anyone, but true, friends aren't gonna wait for you when it's their turn to live their life; so why give up my future for them.

But as much as I'm looking forward to carrying on with my life, it is gonna be sad leaving my friends behind. So to my dear friends, please keep in touch, now and in time to come. I have to say that some of my friends have really been taking time to spend more time with me after I "warned" them last year that I'll only be here for only a year or so longer. Thank you.

For now, I shall comfort myself with God's blessings of the 1) Internet i.e. facebook, blogging, etc 2) sms-ing and 3) easier travel (let's hope hyderabad or wherever I land up becomes SIA's fave routes i.e. more discounts lol).

Maybe it's more than just missing my friends. Maybe it's the fear of the unknown. Moving into a more conservative, male-dominated society. Maybe things would be different if I had been moving to a more modern society (Sweden..woo! haha). Maybe...

I just have to remind myself that, at the end of the day, it's worth it.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

[mastery]

I talk to myself so much with ideas on what to write when I get home, but when I'm sitting here in front of the PC my mind goes blank. Maybe I have short term memory. Possibly. Haha.

So well I guess I'll just blog whatever comes to mind right now, which is not in the same calm, collected beautiful language that I construct while on the bus. Gah. That's why I need a PDA haha (MB: hint hint lol).

Well off the top of my mind...YAY My thesis has been accepted! Heh. Am really glad. Looks like things will go as planned and I can graduate on 8 July. Wee! And MB will be able to attend my graduation! Double happy! Was quite surprised when prof told me thesis was given the go ahead. But since I hadn't received official news, I thought maybe things wldn't be finalised so soon. Plus it's been only slightly more than a month....not anywhere near the minimum 2 months which it usually takes for theses to be examined (usually students start bugging registrar's office after 2nd month as to why no news yet lol). But well, last weekend, got the letter, and after some minor ammendments which don't even need to be re-marked, I've done the final submission. Woohoo. Yes, I'm euphoric. Haha. I didn't wanna be too happy yet although I'd submitted it, cos being the erm not-so-confident person that I am, was telling MB that the thesis might be rejected if it's not well written etc etc. And even now I'm like..ok, I'll celebrate only when I get the final letter that I've been conferred my degree. Haha. I guess I can save up till then to treat my prof n a few colleagues (now now..how to shortlist who are the privileged ones...haha) :P

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

[see no evil, hear no evil, touch no evil]

For the benefit of those who would like to know what kind of learners/communicators they are, am attaching some notes from the NLP course I attended several weeks ago. Must say, it has helped me to understand myself and people around me better. We're each a mixed of about 2 of the types.

I'm visual btw, and perhaps my less dominant one is kinesthetic. Maybe that's why Ruth commented that I like to put pics up on my blog heh. =) I liked the example my instructor gave: A visual husband can give his auditory wife all the diamonds in the world, but she might still go "but u never SAY you love me". Simple example yet to the point. So I told MB, for my case, it'd be "you tell me you love me but u never buy me any diamonds". Hahahaha :P

I also have a summarised version of the MB/TI Personality Type System, so if anyone is interested, do contact me directly.





Monday, March 02, 2009

[of hedonism]

The planning was astute. The execution was precise. It was a surprise that was really surprising. Pats on our back for a job well done!

My auntie had been not so much hinting that she wanted to go for a short trip for her bday - to stay in a hotel and go for a spa. So the main masterminds, Jam and I planned a lil trip to JB two weekends ago. It started with me "kidnapping" Auntie on Friday, on the pretext of wanting to go to the (pathetic) bridal exhibition at expo. Oh, but we did run some errands tho, I booked the mosque for my solemnisation venue..yay!

So anyway, after our sad trip to the fair (there were only 10 booths...after a 1 hr ride to expo..gah! talk abt economic crisis), told Auntie that we were having dinner at Kranji. She did wonder whether there was anything to eat there but she trusted I knew this "new" restaurant afterall. Sakura, Jam and even Uncle Dolah met us there and we hopped onto Causeway Link to head to JB. I changed story to we're having dinner at JB, and though auntie was worried whether her passport was around, she trusted us again.

The best part was when we reached the hotel. Even after filling the hotel's name on the white immigration card, auntie was still clueless abt our plan. I was like "Surprise!!" but she still thought we were having dinner at the restaurant. It was only when Jam literally spelt out that we were CHECKING in, did she react - tearfully might I add. Heh.

The second surprise came the next day, where we said we'd go shopping then lunch, but first we stopped by Puteri Pacific (JB's Pan Pac) and treated auntie to a yummy 105 mins "marine spa" massage. We asked her again if she was surprised/happy/etc, and she was like...u don't want too much emotions to flow out so let's avoid that qs. Needless to say, she was extremely touched.

It was the perfect holiday for us as well, cos we spent the weekend basically eating, sleeping, watching tv, playing cards, the works. The only exercise we got was shopping at City Square and boy was it tough for me cos the damn soft sofa in the hotel room ruined my back. But all in all it was a great trip - good food, great prices, cheap and good hotel room (tropical inn), and awesome company. A few details need to be kept secret tho, like the forfeits the "donkey"'s had to do when they lost. Wahahaha.

It really helped that auntie was blur, and that (she said) she trusted me with her life, so she'd have followed wherever we kidnapped her anyway. We're already thinking of our next bumming trip soon. It was a blast!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

[thesis submitted]

I finally submitted my Masters thesis on Monday 2/2/09, after 3 years of reading, research, lab work, more reading, writing, editing and more editing, and agonising. How does it feel? Really good! I feel like I have more breathing space now, not having to come home to open the same file over and over again, wondering how many more pages to go before it finally ends. I now have a couple of months (I hope!) before the examiners come back with the results, so at least I have more time to myself.

For the moment, I shall concentrate on having FUN! I'm almost done with wedding preparations, just have to commit who I want my vendors to be (I'm fickle) so not much work to be done in that area. Maybe I should work on non-procrastination lol.

Anyway, wanted to include some excerpts from my acknowledgements, those really heartfelt ones. To my baby, thank you for motivating me each day to complete what seemed like a daunting task to me and thank you for helping me every step of the way right down to editing 100 pages filled with text of what would seem like greek to you. =)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I would like to express my utmost gratitude to my supervisor Prof C SE...has not
only been an invaluable guiding and motivational source in my academic pursuit, but
also an important source of support for my personal development. His kindness and
dedication to his career as an occupational health physician and a researcher have
inspired me greatly in the field of public health.

I express my thanks to Prof C KS... giving me the
opportunity to attend the modules that were conducted in Sweden.

...

I also deeply appreciate the technical help from Mr O Y B for brainstorming and
optimising enzymatic assays with me. He has always been ready to lend a hand
whenever I needed help in the laboratory.

My sincere thanks are due to Ms L G H for her assistance and
advice in the statistical analysis of this thesis and of our published original article.
The numerous scientific and less scientific discussions with her have created a
pleasant working atmosphere and a wonderful friendship.

Warm thanks go to my parents, sister, and the rest of my family for their
understanding, support and comfort not only during this project, but throughout my
previous studies. I would like to dedicate this thesis to my dear fiancé Far.ooq; his
love and support has kept me going especially on days where everything seemed to be
going wrong. Because of him, I had the strength and motivation to complete this
thesis. Finally and most importantly, all praises be to God who granted me the
opportunity and strength to undertake my Masters studies.

Monday, January 26, 2009

[partial solar eclipse on lunar new year]

I guess the title describes it all haha. Well, I'm really happy I finally got to watch an eclipse, even it was just partial. 80% is good enough for a beginner like me heh. I shall not go into details about how 2 years ago I thought I would see the sky darken, and the eclipse with my naked eye hahaha. Hey we learn right? ;)

It was a great way to spend the holiday with my two fave sistaz. And I'm glad I chose going to N.US (organised by NU.S As.tro) as opposed to the Scie.nce Ce.ntre or one of the mosques at Ke.at Ho.ng, cos I guess it wld've been much more chaotic there (picture lil kids running ard and being chased by their parents at these more "family friendly" places). And since I just recently ended a 2 day phot.oshop workshop, I decided to try my hands at some editing of the awesomely cool pics we took thru the telescope. Uploaded more pics of our eclipse outing at my photo page. Enjoy!

P.S. To Chinese readers, Gong Xi Fa Cai. Ang Pao Na Lai! Haha. According to Chinese tradition, this shall be the last time I get ang paos on CNY. Not that I've ever gotten any...okay, maybe once. Lol.

the power of photoshop

the power of Allah

Monday, January 05, 2009

[no more earthquake]

Lying in bed the whole day on the first day of work in 2009. Well not exactly, since last fri was the first day, but that doesn't count cos I was on leave..haha. Wouldn't say I was partying that much over the long weekend, but I guess one thing led to another. See what happened was, I shared earthquake after dinner with the girls at swen.son's. Lil did I know, but only half way through the bowl, they kindly offered the info that all 3 of them were sick/just recovering from a bad flu. Great. I was like...nvm...positive thinking...I won't get sick....

New Year's Day was when I should've been resting to combat the effect of deadly germs haha. But instead I exerted myself. Rushed to IKEA in the morning to get my friend a voucher for her housewarming (didn't have time to shop hehe), then went to her place where I ate lots of good (and not so healthy) food, then went to auntie's place. I should have rested at auntie's place, but no, I went hopping on a trampoline (don't gasp lol). As if I hadn't done enough damage, ate loads and loads of apple pie which jam so kindly made for me in exchange for me coming over. Sweet lil girl she can be. Slept in air con the whole night (which even on 'normal' days is a recipe for disaster), woke up at 5.30am next morning to accompany her to school, met auntie for breakfast after that, and voila, by that evening was feeling signs of disaster.

So now I've got 4 different pills to take, 1 cough mixture, lozenges, and a very heavy head (and chest). Guess my positive thinking didn't work in this instance tsk tsk. But who am I kidding, no way no more earthquake. Just no more earthquake till I've clarified everyone sharing it has been in the pink of health lol.

update: as of tues 5 jan, i have 7 pills to pop, not including my 2 vitamins which I'm wondering if I shld add to my poor liver's load. Talk abt needing a detox, not just from junk food, but meds as well. Back to work tmr...yikes..after 7 days of care-free bumming at home....

Friday, January 02, 2009

[the year that was]

there's indeed a lot of things to reflect on this year. some of the significant mentionables:


  1. Met mind.boggler ("officially" hehe) for the first time. Also the trip where he met my parents, entranced the rest of the family, and got down on his knee. Talk about a fruitful trip. Haha.

  2. Did a lot of yoga (3 rounds of 8 weekly sessions to be exact...till instructor remembered my name lol) and exercise, and managed to get back to my pre-depression weight. Wee. Now to maintain it..argh...


  3. Did a lot of things I've been wanting to do (one of my main aims of the year)...some of which include exploring Egypt, diving, watching Ballet Under The Stars, getting a makeover+photoshoot, entering a scrabble competition, joining a life skills group to help myself and others, and shooting an air pistol.


  4. "Graduated" from seeing my counsellor(s) which also means I've come a great distance in healing. At least they think so. haha.


  5. Got engaged. Great achievement considering that I thought I'd never get married in the first place lol.


  6. On the way to planning 11 July 2009 and my life ahead with someone so special and who loves and cherishes me so deeply.


Here's to 2009, hoping it'd be an even greater year ahead. Our year. Resolutions? As mb said, appreciating God for all the blessings He has showered on us, making the most of what life gives us, and not worrying about things that are beyond our control.