Saturday, May 31, 2008

A Birthday Note to Dania Jazmin - 6 Years Old

My Dearest Dania,

Today you turned six years old. Six!! How time flies. A part of me still wants to see you as my little girl that will always be by my side yet everyday you show signs of Independence, realising my fear and astonishment that you are now a big girl.

Because of the school holidays, we had your birthday party a couple of weeks earlier. Your wish for a Princess Themed party came true and I'm so happy that it all turned out well for you. It wouldn't have been possible if not for the support from our family and friends, who all joined in the celebration of your happiest day of the year. Thank you to your wan for sponsoring the food, thank you to your maksu, pakngah and auntie Zaiti for being the gamemasters, thank you to your paklang for being the unpaid photographer (hehehe), thank you to all your friends for coming and joining in the activities and games and for bringing such wonderful presents for you to enjoy.

A huge shoutout would also have to go to Auntie Noresh for making such a wonderful cake. Seeing your eye light up at the sight of the massive castle cake really made my day. Your smile lit up the room and you contagious laughter was music to my ears. Thank you for being such a wonderful princess and for making your day all about family and friends too.

Today, as your birthday treat, abah took us to the Rabbit Farm in Semenyih. When we arrived there, you and your sister whooped with joy when you all saw the cute rabbits hopping in the pen yard. It took a few minutes for the rabbits to get acquainted with you but before long, you had them eating out of your hand, literally. You were amazed at their soft fur and wobbly noses and continued to pestered me and abah to buy you one of your own.
Seeing how gently you handled the rabbits at the pen yard, maybe that wouldn't be such a bad idea but would have to wait until we move to our new house. So soon my little princess, you may have your bunny to call you own, to play with and hopefully find lots of good memories and love to give and receive.

Dearest Buttercup,

Words cannot express at how proud I feel everytime I look at you. School has been very good for you this year, even with the added on workload. In fact you've thrived beyond our expectations, which just goes to show how much of your mother you take after. Hehe. I love the fact that you always have a funny story waiting for me when I come home, about your friends at school and what you guys did together. It pleases me that you have nice friends and that your teachers love you too. I must be doing something right.

I hope you can forgive me for being super busy this year. With work and the new spa, our time together has been limited and I can only hope this is temporary. Please don't ever think that anything could ever be more important to me than you and your sister. Please know that what I'm doing now is so that our family will be more easy off in the long run. I promise to make this up to you. I promise to make our time together more meaningful.

Because the truth of the matter is, you're growing up so quickly; next year you'll be in primary school, before I know it you'll be heading off to University and getting married and moving away from me. I realise there is nothing I can do to stop this so as a mother that loves you so dearly, my gift to you would be to prepare you for your live ahead, by giving you guidance and love and support.

Sometimes I think writing you a note once a year is not enough. There are too many memories I want to hold on to, to many things I want to tell you. So many things I want to thank you for because if anything, you are my pillar of strength. You may not know it now but there have been times when your abah and I have been so down and sad, yet then you come along and tell us a story or a joke and make us laugh and suddenly everything is alright again. That is your superpower, your ability to make the sun shine bright in our lives. And for that, I can never thank you enough.
Thank you for bringing us six years of joy, happiness and love. Thank you for all the smiles, hugs and kisses. Thank you for all the "I love You" whispers before bedtime and upon waking up.
Most of all, thank you for being my daughter. For all my faults and weaknesses, I must be doing something right if I have you as my daughter.

Happy sixth birthday, Manja.

Love, Ibu.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Worst Album Covers Ever

I'm still waiting for my brother to finish editing the pictures from Dania's birthday party so until then I bring you...


The Brothers Johnson: Look Out For #1.

Good god, I get love guitars. In fact you love them so much, they give you massive orgasms!! Shheeeeshh...

The Rolling Stones in Concert: Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out!

I dunno what a Ya-Ya is but if it's gonna make me run up and down the road like a crazed king wannabe with a guitar and a drum-wearing donkey by my side, I think I'll pass. But then again, every concert should have a donkey...hehehe.

Tim Riley: A Rainbow in Curved Air.

Apparently Tim came up with the "using your forehead as an advertising site" idea first.

Rob & Fab: self-titled

What happened to these guys? Apart from getting caught ermmm...not singing...and having to give back their Grammies. Plus I think one of them died from a drug overdose. Hmmm, I used to like these guys, I mean..come on, look at those bods!! Hehehe..but what's with the pose in this picture? It's like the photo sessions lasted for 10 hours and they couldn't even get one toilet break to ease themselves. Heh..

Jim Post: I Like My Life.
Really, Jim? Really? Coz the expression on your face tells me differently. Or maybe it's because you have ice cold water splashed all over your shoulder and that Tom Selleck moustache of yours can't cover enough of you to feel warm and fuzzy.

Heino: Liebe Mutter
The dyed hair, the thick-rimmed glasses, the black "funeral" suit, the roses, the lazy eye. What exactly is the message here? A part of me is afraid to find out.

Freddie Gage: All My Friends Are Dead
I cannot find any occasion where this album would be appropriate. A funeral for really, really old people? Maybe. This wins the award for Most Depressing Album ever.

ABBA: Gracias Por La Musica
Ahh...Thank You For The Music. And also thank you for the laughs. Look...they're even laughing at themselves. Pastels have never looked so bad.

Orleans: Waking and Dreaming
Thank god none of them had any major chest hairs. But still...why?!! Somehow 5 guys naked and embracing is not my idea of a's a nightmare!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Money Advice...From Someone Who's Also Still Learning

Today and yesterday I attended a very interesting course; Finance for Non-Financial Executives. The reason was initially so I could make heads and tails out of all the financial reports and P&L statements I had to go through during the course of my work, but in the end I came out with a lot more knowledge.

During one of our chit chat sessions, our lecturer touched on the subject of personal financial planning. She gave an example of her ex-colleagues who had retired but were forced to dive back into the corporate sector because they had non or insufficient savings to last them during their retirement years. She then gave an example of another ex-colleague who is not only currently enjoying his retirement years playing golf, but also has 3-4 houses for renting, thus generating passive income on the side.

Being seated in the front of the class subjected me to be the "example" during the lessons. The prof asked me whether I had any assets to my name; I mentioned I had a car and an apartment, both of them already fully paid for. To say she was impressed was an understatement. In fact looking back, I probably was the person in the class with the most net worth to my name.

During lunch hour, I was approached by one of class members who asked me about my financial strategies; how on earth was I able to afford a car and apartment and not have any loans to burden me with? Did I win the lottery? Did I get a huge inheritance from anyone?

My answer was simple; I made sure I spent less than what I earned.

Sounds simple, right? Yet you would be surprised to know that a lot of people I know, not only live from one paycheck to another but also accumulate debts on a monthly basis.

She then asked me, I make so and so every month and it's barely enough to get by. How can I ever have enough to start saving?

I told her, make your savings automatic. Fill out the form from HR and allow them to deduct a certain amount from your salary that will be autodeposited into your ASB or Tabung Haji. Just make sure you place this savings into a place that you can't just use an atm card to withdraw money from. Depositing money into another bank where you don't have an atm card is also a good option.

My concept is "out of sight, out of mind". If that portion of money is not made readily available for me to spend, I usually find that I don't even miss it and even find ways to compensate for the decrease in spending money.

Ways I've cut down my monthly expenses.
1. I sometimes bring breakfast to work. Usually I eat it a bit later in the day, at around 930am. That way, at lunch I'm still half full and don't feel the urge to stuff myself. Another idea would be to also bag your lunch to work, something I'm also considering after I get a more reliable maid.

2. I drink lots of plain water. At my office, we have a ready water cooler so basically plain water is free for the staff. When I go out for lunch with my colleagues, I fill up a bottle of water and take it with me. That usually saves me RM1.50 if I were to order hot lemon tea. Times that by 5 days a week and 4 weeks a month and the savings can really add up.

3. I carpool when going out for lunch. We usually take turns driving so everyone gets a chance to save on petrol.

4. I make a grocery list and make sure I stick to it. It's very easy to get "lost" at the grocery stores and by pushing the trolley down every aisle, I would normally find myself spending up to RM200 per trip, mostly on items that were never on my list to begin with. By sticking to my list and minimizing the amount of time I spend at the grocery stores, ensures that I cut down on fraudulent spending and increase my savings.

There are a lot of ways to increase your savings. Another tip that I found extremely useful was to meticulously track my expenditures for at least 3 months, then go over the receipts and figure out where my money was going to and how I could cut down on the spending. I found out that one of my weaknesses was to visit the store at the petrol stations whenever I stopped to fill up on petrol. Those RM2.50 cups of corn can really burn into your budget if you allow them to.

I would recommend everyone who's interested in finding out how to improve their net worth to visit The Simple Dollar. I find the articles to be very informative and really easy to understand, which is important for a non-finance executive like me.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Makeup Magic!!

I have so much stories to share (my birthday celebration, Dania's birthday celebration, my movie review of Ironman) but no time as of yet.

So instead I leave you with this...behold, the magic of makeup!!
(thanks to my dear lost friend PeeJ, for the email)

Monday, May 12, 2008

My Husband in a Parallel Life

I can't wait for The Incredible Hulk to come to theatres because I am just positively, incredibly in love with Edward Norton.

I don't know what it is about him that makes me swoon. He's one of the best, most versatile actor I know. He looks good thin, he looks good buffed up.

Everything he does just makes me want to take off my panties!!
Check out the trailer for TIH. Looks really fine!!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Mother's Day Celebration - Petrosains Trip

We were suppose to open the spa today but unfortunately our staff got food poisoning so we had to call up and postpone our clients' appointments to another time. Urgh...nasib baik clients very understanding.

Seeing how I didn't want to spend another day stuck at home, I suggested to hubby that we take the girls to Petrosains. They were having a Mother's Day special; free entrance fee for Mom's with one child ticket.

We headed out of the house at around 10.30am. Traffic was fine so we arrived at KLCC around 11am. We scouted all the parking places for one that did had a flat rate as some of the parking rates in KLCC was astrominal. We finally found one behind the Conventional Center that charged us RM6 for a whole day. OKlah..

We headed into KLCC and went straight to Level 4 where Petrosains was located. Buying tickets was a breeze but we did have to wait for a while to go on the Dark Ride. The girls were so excited.

The ride was nice and very informative. We had a very interesting time. The girls had fun playing with all the experiments and learning about dinosaurs and stuff like that. They were a bit freaked out with the T-Rex (it was huge) but shrieked with delight when the volcano started erupting.

We spent nearly 3 hours in the Petrosains and would probably had been there longer if not for hubby being extremely hungry. We headed to Chilli's for lunch. Around 4pm, we headed to Bangi to check out the progress of our house.

It was fun but extremely tiring day with the girls. I guess, physically I an still not 100%.

Tomorrow, I'm sleeping in until noon.

IREE Touch Body Treatment Promotion

As a gesture of our gratitude and sincere thanks to all those who have been supporting us in getting IREE Touch up and running, we are currently having a Body Treatment Promotion, valid for 1st time customers.

For this promotion, you may choose from the following treatments:

*Rejuvenating Full Body Massage (1 hr)
*Full Body Reflexology (1hr)
*Shoulder and Back Massage (45 minutes)
*Body Scrub
*Body Mask
*Hot Blanket

For any 2 treatments, only RM88
For any 3 treatments, only RM128
For any 4 treatments, only RM168
For any 5 treatments, only RM218

Terms and conditions: Promotion is only for 1st time customers. All treatments must be taken within the same session.

For those who are interested or require more information, please do not hesitate to contact us at or call us at 03-8063 3603.

Alhamdulillah, a few of our family and friends have tried out the packages and are genuinely satisfied with the service.

We look forward to hearing from you guys!!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Dania's Birthday - Planning in the Works 1

These few days at home has given me some time to wind down. Things have been on an emotional high these couple of days, that curling up in bed with a good book has done wonders in bringing me back down to earth.

Whatever it is, I still have so much to be grateful for.

Spending more time with the girls also has been a major plus. Since I've been itching to find something to take my mind of things, I decided to go ahead and plan for Dania's 6th birthday which is coming soon.

What the hell, she's going to have the princess birthday party she's always wanted.

I've designed the invitation cards (as best as I can) with Dania's help (she gave pointers on what images to use). Next we'll draw up the guest list, who will most probably just consist of her schoolmates and her friends from Yamaha. Hubby wanted to keep it short and simple; it's not like we're preparing for her wedding (yet!!), he said.

Ah, men. They want to help yet sometimes they take the fun out of "funtastic" without even realising it.

I still have decorations, food, activities for the kids (Dania wanted games for her friends, so most probably my SIL is going to be made gamemaster for this...and she doesn't know it yet!!. Hah!!) to think of. I've done tons of surfing on the web for ideas but somehow the more ideas I find, the more overwhelmed I get.

We still haven't figured out the most important aspect of the party; when to have it. Dania's birthday falls on the 31st which is smack in the middle of school holidays. Our concern is that if we have it then, a lot of her friends might not be able to make it, seeing how they might be on holiday or balik kampung. We could delay it for another week but I don't think Dania will be able to handle any postponement on the most important day of her life. Hah!

Ah well, the planning continues.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Down That Road Again

So now I am on medical leave for a week. It had to be done with. After much hope and much prayers, the doctor concluded that the baby had no heartbeat and our only option was to do (another!!) D&C.

What? And I jumping ahead here? I didn't tell you guys I was pregnant in the first place?


Well, I was. 8 weeks to be exact. Things were going smoothly, or so I thought. My MS had reared its ugly head around week 7 so I though, hey, everything is in order. Just 30 or so more weeks of projectile vomiting and we'll have that addition to the family.

As the saying goes, if you wanna make God laugh, start making plans.

Luckily I didn't announce the news to a lot of people; just a handful at the office. My mom. My MIL. The girls. My business partner, Ida. Saves me the task of having to go through the story again and again.

How am I feeling? Physically I'm doing ok. Just a little bit of bleeding and some soreness. Nothing some painkillers can't take care of.

Emotionally? I'm sad. Sad to the point I feel numb. Numb to the point I can't believe this happened to us again (and again). For the 3rd time. In a row!!

Part of me is saying, "it's ok, we'll try again, takde rezeki" and all that shit. Another part of me is screaming, "WTF!!!! Again?!! Fine!! That's it, I'm throwing in the towel. No more trying. It's just too tiring. Physically, emotionally, spiritually..."

The kids are disappointed. Hubby is beyond grief. Despite the side effects of the anesthetic, I find myself unable to sleep.

Why? Why?

I got myself a new gynae, not because I was unhappy with my old one but because this new hospital was just 10 minutes from our home. She's nice and was very sympathetic with our case. We decided to do some chromosome and DNA tests with the baby and also with my blood, which they took pints of. We expect to get some results within a month.

Until then, it's business as usual. I guess we won't be getting that MPV this year either. Heh..

Monday, May 05, 2008

Because It's Monday

and I needed something to help me chase away the Monday Blues....YouTube never fails.

Best Wedding Dance Ever!!

This couple rocks!! And they were on Ellen!! Almost make me wish I had a first wedding dance..for sure, The Way That You Love Me by Paula Abdul!!

Best Way to Get on Your Momma's Nerves!!

Cutest panda ever. And the mom's expression...priceless. But the munching must go on...krup krap krup krap....