Thursday, 27 November 2014

Once upon a december

Let me sweep the tiny cobwebs away that formed in between these clouds while I was away.

It was not on purpose, I ensure you. Being sick and involved in a family’s wedding took so much of my time that the flu bug has decided to cuddle up and refuse to budge. So say hello to a nasal Huda that has been around for 2 weeks now… Is there a way to cut of the nose and run it under the tap and fix the nose back onto my bloated face? No? No such procedure? Oh well...

After the wedding for the year (the only wedding for 2014 that involves my family), I am facing a terrible predicament; my messy room. Messy is an understatement. It looks like a landslide of clean clothes with a sprinkle of bags. I am in huge trouble. It has come to a point that I have nothing to wear for work. Yup. Nothing as I refuse to dig that pile of clothes laying on the beautiful emerald tiles. Some are draped over my crisp white Alex drawers and over the metallic rod holding my dresses. I made it sound so artistically pleasing but it is far from such grace.

There are just so many things to do! I have meet-ups with my dearest family, friends and dates with better half that was postponed so many times. I need to start doing writing down the dates on my diary so that I will not forget! December is getting packed quickly and there is still 4 more days to November. I foresee a tired Huda at the end of the year celebrating her sister’s 22nd with her Tigger in her arms, getting ready for bed at 8pm. That sounds just about right.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

With time I'll learn

A cup of coffee to soothe the soul and mind
And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him –Al Talaq (65:3)

I’ve not been the best of health lately and getting irritated seemed to be even easier than before. Things being pushed back and running late are one of my most pet-peeve. The better half calls me ‘Kan-chiong Spider’ and I am in no position to deny that.

Control is something I adore and seek. Every single day is planned out to the utmost precision for me to foresee and expect turns and setbacks. I cannot handle setbacks well especially when it is due to my own mistakes or incapability. As I get older, I learnt the hard way that things may not go the way you hope for. I used to cry each time things does not fall the way I want it to be. I will sulk for days before I console myself. I used to question why it was not granted the way I want it to.

With age I realized that HE has his reasons why. I may not see it now, but in time, I’ll know why. I realized that HE may not be putting just me through the trial but also the people closest to me. I must learn to let go of control. I must learn to let fate runs its course. I must have faith in HIM that he knows what is best.

With my health not at its best and anxious news kept on coming in, my anxiety spilled over and I, regrettably, pour it out. Anxiety is not the best of feelings to show others during their most dire need of calmness. Anxiety makes me tremble and cry. Every day is a lesson and opportunity to learn to handle anxiety. I am still learning.

With each new day, I am to strengthen my faith to let go of disappointments and uncertainty.

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Letting my mind wander

Ever since I came back from Bandung, Indonesia, my office desk has been decorated with amazing souvenirs that my awesome colleagues brought back from their travels; Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey and a few other places. I, on the other hand, have been diligently staying put in Singapore at the request of my Old Man (he is not too keen seeing his oldest travelling out of his watchful eye).

Staring at my desktop/laptop and seeing numbers dance will always make me restless. I won’t deny that my mind wanders to either images of me curling up in my comfortable bed or having coffee with the better half. Often, my mind wonders to places I would want to visit. For the past few months, Jogja has been the subject of my curiosity.

Have a read at Nathariane's Post. If you don't feel that Borobudur is beautiful then you seriously need your eyes check (or maybe you are just not inclined to what I like. Hehe)
What I know about Jogja (or Yogyakarta, as it is spelled) is Mount Merapi and Borobudur. I knew nothing else before I start googling and reading travelogues about this beautiful city. I am inclined towards culture and historical significance when it comes to travelling. My main concerns to travelling are the accommodation and if there are any historical monuments or cultural museums that I can visit. If there is a volcano then that is an awesome bonus (I have a soft spot for these lava-spouting mountains). Mount Merapi and Mount Bromo has always been on my travel list but I have yet to find the courage (and money) to start on those adventures.

Lately, I find myself googling after my trip to Bandung, Indonesia (Yes, 2 volcanos are part of the itinerary) and so many sights starts to creep into my growling list of sights to see in Jogja. I knew about Borobudur but I did not know about the other 2 UNESCO sites; Prambanan and Ratu Boko. Neither did I know of the famous street of Malioboro. So now the search of what is interesting in Jogja begins. Every hour I spent looking at travelogues, my interest peak. It has come to a point that I am planning an itinerary to Jogja as a solo traveler. Yes, I am that desperate to go. I want to soak in the magnificence of Borobudur; I want to face Mout Merapi and see the destruction it caused when it erupted in 2010*. I want to learn a bit more of my heritage; the Javanese culture and food.

Looking at the souvenirs made me yearn for another trip. With God’s will, Jogja will be my next destination as I have finally found a partner to go with!

*Indicated earlier as 2012. My mistake.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Chu! Chu!

It is a Sunday and I finally had time to whip up some Churros for the little sister.

What more could you ask for on a Sunday afternoon? Some hot, deep fried dough with a chocolate sauce. That is just yummy. Looking through cooking blogs, I am envious of how beautiful they came out. Mine is like my fingers. Short and stumpy or 'Montok' as what my better half would say.

I should have just made these!

There is just something about these long, twisty churros...
I had trouble with piping my Churros. The piping bag burst, the dough was not smooth enough and my 2nd batch of Churros brunt. All the trouble you could foresee making this simple dish just happened to me. What luck! The recipe I used calls for Churros that are a bit dense for my liking. No matter how ugly my churros are, I am still proud of them. I may not be as good as my mom (no matter how good other bakers are, mummy's still the best), I will try to be half as good. Of course to cover the browned Churros, I practically did an 'avalanche' of the mixture of icing sugar and ground cinnamon.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Manolo Blahniks would have to wait

Reaching my mid-twenties in 2 years and looking back, I am ashamed to say that I am nowhere near achieving a goal I’ve set myself at 19; To be financially organized.

Confessions time. I am one hell of a shopper. I shop so much when I first started working (back in 2011) that I am literally living pay check to pay check. Terrible isn’t it? Well, it does not help that I was working for one of the two top beauty companies in the world. I can safely say that it fuelled and sustained my obsession with beauty products. Material things became my ‘savings plan’. I save to buy what I wanted. I would not ask for it for birthdays or presents. I rather experience the ‘hard work’ of saving up to get my First Kate Spade Bag (It has friends now; Kate Spade 2, Kate Spade 3, Kate Spade 4, Coach 1, Kate Spade 5. Obviously I love a particular brand of bags) than getting it all for free.

This is the ultimate. Taken from Purseblog
Bags are not the only luxuries I splurged on. I splurged on beauty products and I am still splurging (WHO IN THE RIGHT MIND SPENT $300+ AT SEPHORA IN ONE RECEIPT FOR 3 ITEMS?! Me).I am terrible. Absolutely terrible. The cute gold, sparkly, gold, abstract-ty, gold packaging of these products just makes me go weak. I am like, take my money, just take it! (I am talking to you YSL and Urban Decay)

It is not that I have no self-control (ok I admit. I don’t) or that I do not budget myself each month. I do but I am lousy at making realistic budgets. Looking back at all my scribbling of attempted budgets, I realized that I set a tight budget that I tend to look for ways out of the budget I set. It is funny that I am running away from the budget I set. I see it like a watermelon being held captive with a ton of rubberbands in the middle. You know it will burst anytime soon. It sure did; EVERY FREAKING MONTH.

Go and watch!
I tried to google articles on this but boy is it hard to concentrate. Most of the articles are pages long (to me scrolling down thrice is too long) and wordy. Call me a kid but I love to see pictures and an article should have soul. Most articles that is on this subject matter are set in a matter-of-factly tone that has no hints of friendliness. I came across one that I truly love. It is absolutely short and straight to the point. She gave % to allocate your budget. She is a life saver! Thank you EMILY!

Go and have a read for those who are like me. I am sure her suggestions are easy to follow and sustained. I have been trying stick to the percentages and I am happy to report that I managed to stick to it for 2 months now! Let us see if this manages to last till end of this year.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Gems in my City : Tiong Bahru

Not really a journey. It was just a walk under the hot sun through one of the oldest neighbourhood in Singapore. I've been there twice but I cannot say I've truly explored the place. There are just too many nooks and crannies to go OOO! and AHH! about. So many little coffee joints to sit and soak in their ambience.

I love the architecture of the surrounding apartment blocks. It has the hipster vibe (of course! It is one of the Top 15 hippest neighbourhood in the world according to Vogue Magazine. Anna Wintour is never wrong) to it and the main reason why I fell in love with this neighbourhood was its old world charm. You seldom get that charm here in the modern metropolis call Singapore. The low rise blocks with their whitewashed walls that is occasionally broken by columns of red bricks are pleasing break to the modern buildings that now towers over 20-stories high.

It is hard to explain the vibe of the place in words. You would have to take a walk around the area and you'll get what I mean. Take a day off and walk around the area on a weekday. I am sure you'll welcome the slower pace that Tiong Bahru has to offer. Get lost in the lanes, who knows, you'll find a special shop or eatery that will soon be your favourite place to visit. I know I found mine.