Friday, October 31, 2008

Ban Yoga?

OH COME ON!

I just read from theyogainstructordiaries that the country's fatwa council are considering to put a ban on Muslims practising yoga. Because they fear that it could damage and deviate their faith and beliefs. The operative word here being FEAR.

In my opinion that's just it - FEAR. And fear is most often there because of ignorance. Ignorance of what something is really about. Have these people taken the time and done their research to really find out what yoga is all about? Do they think that people can't think for themselves, to differentiate and decide if something is detrimental to their beliefs? Don't you think there are so many other things out there that can damage and deviate people's beliefs?

As someone who has practised yoga and has done some share of reading and learning about yoga, I find this as totally absurd. Yes, yoga is largely associated with Hinduism but it can be practised without any act of worship or devotion to Hinduism or any God for that matter. Yoga includes meditation, but it is more a relaxing type of meditation - to calm, sooth and center one's self. To balance the body, mind and soul.

And it has been proven that yoga bears enormous mental and physical health benefits. What's next? Are they going to ban other sports too? Well, what can you expect? These people even wanted to ban women from wearing trousers because they deemed it as tomboyish and can lead to lesbian sex. Like OH MA GOD!! Have they been trapped in a cave all this while? You have women leading nations and multi million dollar corporations. We supposedly live in this age of globalisation and information. And you want to ban women from wearing trousers?? ABSURD!

Still On Weddings

Sitting at the church and listening to the Father deliver his message on marriage, I got to thinking. How do Atheists get married? I heard in a movie, that in some cultures, the bride and groom would just stare at each other and no one would say a word. And after some time of just staring at each other, they are married. I don't know how true this is. But whatever the religion, isn't the gist of it just the same. Marriage is about commitment and sharing your life together. The wedding sermon (is there a special name for it?) delivered by the Father has basically the same message as that which I have heard delivered by an Imam. Marriage is procedural and religious and sacred but living a life of love and respect together are universal.

But what if, what if you were stranded in a desserted place with just that other person and you fall in love and live your lives together, with no others, no imam or priests around? Can you just declare yourselves married? Would that be acceptable in the eyes of God?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wedding Shoes

Still on the topic of weddings.
These have been dubbed my official wedding shoes.
Primavera, maroon red, bling-ified shoes.
Have only been worn 3 times.
First, to my own wedding reception.
Second, to hubby's friend James' reception.
Third, to Mae's reception.
Anyone getting married soon, let me know so that I can dust them off first.
:)
Oooo.. matching red nail polish would be nice, kan?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Mae's Wedding

Our dear friend Mae got hitched to her beau, Asun on the 23rd Oct, here in KK.

Mae invited hubby and I to her house that morning and we got the chance to see her get prepared for the church ceremony. I'm glad we went and shared that precious moment with her. Most of her family members were busy that morning, so it was just us there with her. We saw her being maked up and posing for shots for her official photographer. She was gorgeous in her custom tailored white satin and lace dress, complete with puffy veil. Mae said she chose the design herself. Her bouquet was a simple bunch of ruby red roses, which beautifully contrasted the white dress. (By the way, her bridesmaid, Asun's sister had the opposite. She wore a red dress and had a bouquet of white roses..nice!) We also got a sneak peek at her dresses for the dinner receptions in KK and Kuching - also custom tailored and with lots of bling! Red dress for KK, blue dress ala cheongsam for Kuching.

Taken at Mae's house before the church ceremony.
This is also my 5 seconds claim to fame! A similar picture taken by the official photographer was featured in the slide show during the reception dinner. This one was taken by hubby.


The solemnization ceremony was held at Mary Immaculate Church in Bukit Padang. It was my first time attending this ceremony in a church. The ceremony was simple, small and sweet, with only family and close friends in attendance. It was on a Thursday morning anyway, a working day. I was pleasantly surprised to see my old friend Sophia there, who came all the way from Miri for the wedding. When a taxi pulled up to the church, hubby remarked that maybe it was Sophia. And surely, it was!

Walking down the aisle

Married!

The above two pictures were taken by yours truly, using hubby's Sony camera. Hubby on the other hand, was literally all over the place that morning. He had in his possession, a DSLR camera for the day and was snap, snap, snapping away. To the point that some of Mae's relatives thought that he was the official photographer and where the official photographer himself was just kneeling to take his pics, hubby was on his tummy! But the results I tell you...gorgeous! He managed to capture some truly beautiful and honest moments.

One for the album..Us with the happy couple..

The solemnization was followed by a simple cake cutting ceremony and brunch at the churches canteen. Even the bride and groom ate with everyone, took their own food and mingled with the guests. Proving that even though you are the Raja Sehari, there's no need to ask people to bend backwards for you. I liked that.

The reception dinner was held at Pacific Sutera Ballroom. Again, simple arrangements, no royalties or politicians abound (I think..), just good food, good music (overly zealous and loud at times!) and coming together to celebrate our good friend's big day. I wished I had dragged hubby and the girls to dance the sumazau!

Hurrah! Diane and Josie made it to this one

With Sophia

I told hubby that with Mae marrying Asun, our circle of friends have come.. full circle. My friends Leo and Soph are good friends with Asun. Leo, Soph and I go quite a long way back. Mae even more so. And now, we're all connected.

Mae and Asun's wedding slide show was accompanied by Bon Jovi's Thank You For Loving Me. Fitting if you ask me. Gave me goosebumps and moments where I felt berhabuk pula di mata. There were two parts I loved from the slide show. First, on a picture of Mae and her friends (in KL), it said..
Mae is a great friend
The girls would be lost without her..

We may not see her as often, but she is one sixth of our 'the girls' and every time she comes back or we go there, we would always always meet and catch up.

And the second, in another slide, it said..

Asun's first word was run...
And after 32 years of running.... he finally found someone he could stand still with..

Awwwww...major habuk di mata!

Congratulations my dear friends, Mae and Asun.
Wishing you both a glorious and joyous lifetime together. xoxo.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hmm..

It's been a while. I have lots to write about actually, I owe some people some tags, I want to put up some pics. Just haven't quite found the time and prolonged inspiration to do so. Some quick updates, notes and reminders (to myself):

1. Attending a good friend's wedding tomorrow, church ceremony in the morning then dinner later that night...hurrah!! Am excited..

2. I dreamt of Hugh Jackman the other night.. nanti la sia cerita lagi pasal mimpi ni

3. I've lost weight! Triple hurrah!! I need new jeans now

4. Hi Paival.. welcome back to the blogging world... naaaaanti la sia buat tu tag ah

5. Welcome home Rin

6. I'm looking for advertisers for my paper... if y'all know anyone or any businesses, let me know ya

7. Yasmin is almost 3 years old... she's amazing :)

8. Be careful what you wish for.. for they might come true..

Actually, most of the stuff above are reminders to myself on things I want to write about. So to get the full story, stay tuned la yaaa...

Monday, October 13, 2008

Oh You Am

Had my third O-you-am session last Saturday and it's really worrying. The topic of the day was axial loading and how to calculate displacement for structures and assemblies. Yet, the bulk of the class was spent helping the students to figure out how to calculate the area of a circle (I even wrote it on the board and a few were asking me what it was!), explaining about units - again the prefixes kilo, mega, giga, and they even didn't know how to expand a simple algebraic equation as in 2(x-2) is equal to 2x-4. They have their midterm coming up and their assignment due in the next session. I wonder how they will cope. I'm also wondering why they went for this course in the first place and also how they were even chosen for the course. I also discovered a few students did disappearing acts and only showed up for the first part of the class and signed their attendance.. What's new eh? How lah if like that..

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Celebrity Night

I will be attending a dinner function in mid November and the theme of the dinner is Celebrity Night. I'm at a total blank on what to wear. I thought it would be some simple theme like Hawaiian or Black & White or even Superheroes - can just buy a tshirt with a huge S on it minus the underwear on the outside! Would love to wear something that's in line with the theme. The only iconic celebrity look I can think of is Madonna's pointy boobs..hmmm..I don't think so! A skimpy kebaya ala Saloma? If only I had the skimpy body to match. Maybe I can borrow a bunch of kids and go as Angelina? Hehe... Any ideas anyone?

Saturday, October 04, 2008

TV Addict at Loose

My name is Linachu...and I'm
a TVholic.

Only these days, most of my TV shows are watched on the PC. So so happy that many of my favourite shows have returned. No more empty nights. Bless.

Here's my rundown on some of my favourites:

House - House is still House. Still not clear what's gonna happen with Wilson but I'm hoping he will still feature regularly, I like him. Also still hoping for Chase and Cameron, mostly Chase though..to have more airtime on the show. Macam tidak adil pula Foreman still features a lot but not those two.. I'm starting to like the new team though - 13 is OK, Cuttner is quirky and clever, Taub balances things out..

Grey's Anatomy - Enjoyed the two hour season premiere. Meredith & McDreamy have sorted things out. Karev is back to his old way. I find Lexi irritating. Callie & Hahn a couple? Oh..why not? I'm hoping that the army doc will join the cast and also hoping Izzy doesn't die, as some rumours have speculated.

Gossip Girl - I'm routing for B and Little J to be new BFFs.

The Amazing Race - Hurrraahh! Phil is back and looking smashing and I still love his 'The world is waiting for you..' speech. Hopefully they will come to Malaysia this time round, even better if it is Kota Kinabula. Err..too bad bout the Santa Clause and Santarina hippies being eliminated first, they certainly added..err..colour to the show. No favourite team yet. Did I mention I love Phil? :)

The Amazing Race Asia - The Malaysian teams are OK. Did you catch Ida Nerina saying 'Thank you Allah' on the previous episode? I think she's the only Muslim so far on the race... (those guys on TAR season ntah ke berapa..can't count la, first episode sudah eliminated) Anyway, I like the HongKong guys..they seem normal and genuine. At first glance, I liked Mai and Oliver, but after their huge blowout at the end of the first episode..I wasn't sure. Too bad for them.. they were cute..

Private Practise - I like this show because it's more colourful compared to Greys. There's also something crazily attractive about that Pete.

Heroes - is out! But I haven't seen any episodes yet! Soon my comrades..soon!

Any other shows I missed out? Tell me..I need my entertainment!

Raya

By the 3rd day of raya, I felt that I've already had enough of raya food. Enough curries and rendang and pulut, I was craving for normal food. Bread and nasi putih and veggies. The days before were just filled with meat and chicken and sugar.... definitely not good for the scales.

On the first day of Raya, we went to my Aunt's house in Likas. There, we were met by many, many relatives..from the Chinese side of the family, mostly from Kota Belud and most of them I don't know. The Chinese side comes from my Grandmother's side of the family. I only knew one aunty and that's only because she was our former neighbour. Some of them were familiar. Even if I bumped into them also I probably wouldn't know they were relatives. My cousin Niz, is the one who knows most of them and he is the one who's usually telling me..'ini anak si anu...', 'itu mama si anu...' Not that I would know anyway. One of them asked me, 'Are you on Geni?' Geni is this online family tree thingy, you see. Our family tree was started by my cousin Aiza, who quickly recruited most of the other relatives and apparently now I am connected to more than 80000 people on my family tree! I kid you not..look at this..

Anyway, that day was interesting. There was even a Deputy Minister and local celebrity at the open house.

After that we were at home and we went to my Mom's later that evening. Yasmin obliged to wear her pink polka dot baju kurung on the first day of raya but then she didn't want to wear baju kurung already for the 2nd day and 3rd day raya visits. Here is the obligatory raya family pic (that some of you have seen on FB..and oh, tia tau oh bila tu musim sejuk mau tiba..)

I ordered cupcakes from Deana and they were yummy and pretty. Yasmin liked looking at the letters and asking, 'What letter is this?' even though she knew what letters they were.


2nd day of raya, we went to another aunt's house in Luyang. I've previously written about a family feud going on between my mom and her siblings, and Alhamdulillah it seems that they are taking some steps towards reconciling. Mom told me that she called her sister on the first day of raya and they talked for quite a long time. Ye la, I think it's been more than two years this feud of theirs. All this while I had continued with subtlety to ask my mom to call them and I don't know if it was me and my constant nagging (terbalik pula kan, anak yang nagging mama) but I'm happy they are now talking. I was happy to meet with my cousins whom I haven't seen in a while. And they had such yummy food at their house!

3rd day of raya, we went to Anna's house at night - where I was so happy to see mixed veggies and acar timun on the menu! Sayurrr!

Yasmin got an airplane ride

I like this pic..can't remember what we were talking about though..

Hee...kesimpulannya, raya ni..makan dan makan dan makan saja laa. All the biscuits and cookies still lingering around in the house ain't good for me... try as I may, it's difficult to resist those kuih makmur and shortbread biscuits!

Itu ja la cerita pasal raya..got lotsa other stuffs to blog about..PS, you may notice the date of this post, 4th october..yeah it took me all this while to upload the photos and finish writing the post.. phew!

Of Weddings & Traditions

I was talking to a friend, who is in the stage of preparing for her wedding, planned to take place in a few months time. She mentioned how the whole process of even planning and discussing the wedding can be nightmarish and difficult. Hubby and I offered her some of our ermm.. wisdom.. based on our experience.

Firstly, one has got to realize that even though you are the one who is going to get married, it is not your wedding, it is everybody's wedding. Everybody here encompasses everyone who is on the wedding committee - parents, soon to be parents in law, aunties, uncles, grandmas, grandpas, siblings, even neighbours or any odd pacik or macik who feels they want or should have a say in some part of the wedding.

Then, of course..understand that certain 'things' need to be done in certain ways. Because you need to keep everybody happy..and you don't want to embarrass any of the family in any imaginable or unimaginable way. And this means that, when you start asking 'Why?', for example, 'Why do we have to do so and so..' the most likely responses you might get will include - 'Don't ask..just follow..' or 'Because that's the way it has always been done...' or 'It's tradition..' Yep, no rational explanations are needed. Even if you're just curious to know why the women side must send 2 more dulangs of hantaran compared to the men's side, no need to ask why we still need sirih junjung even though no one in the family makan the stuff anymore...yep, no questions...just follow...

Also, though it is your wedding, probably two thirds of the wedding guests are gonna be people you don't even know - friends, co-workers of your parents and in laws, distant distant relatives, neighbours from the opposite end of the kampung, etc. Well, this one is not too bad actually...these people usually bring angpows!

During our wedding preparations, there was a meeting..yep, ada committee meeting lagi tu..at our wedding venue, and some people suggested that we berarak to the dewan from the middle of the car park..which was quite a distant away and would most definitely be congested and hot on the day itself, a suggestion I really disliked and disagreed to. So, I pulled out my sourest face and had my say and hey presto, they in the end agreed to our alternative instead. Actually, I'm a bad liar you see and I'm a bad poker player too, anything I don't like or agree to, you'd sure see on my face. So, one of my aunts, musta seen this that day, saw how unhappy I was and she was on my side... So all is not lost you see, you can still have your say and get your way!

Additional thoughts:

Garden weddings are beautiful. In theory. And in cool climates. Although it is definitely possible to execute the perfect garden wedding here, there are many things to consider. You definitely need a meteorological consult - is it gonna be hot, or really hot or scorching hot? Or is it gonna rain cats and dogs? In both cases, canopies and tents would be essential. For the former, add in misting fans or hand fans as well - don't want guests to run to the shades or suffer heat stroke or sun burn right? I know you can't control the weather, but you can be prepared.

Also, as much as I am all for foregoing certain illogical and irrational traditions, some are worth the keep and should be considered sacred. The nikah ceremony for example, is the most important one in a Muslim wedding. It should be comfortable, intimate, exclusive. You don't want to give the Pak Imam any surprises as well!

Speaking of.. I was wondering how they do lafaz nikah in English or any other languages. Someone once told me, he had to do the lafaz nikah was it 3 or 4 times, on account that he stutters quite a lot. I think it's not as much how many times you need to do it, but what the meaning holds for you as well. Sometimes though, the lafaz can be so rehearsed (remember the point on not embarrassing the family), that it can sound so robotic, like on autopilot. Which is why I love listening to the different vows people use in Christian weddings, it's more personal.

Anyway, I'm digressing. Ultimately, your wedding is your once in a lifetime (hopefully) big day. Certain things you need to do and just follow...certain things you can have your way....
Either way, you will survive :)