Wednesday, December 30, 2009

WYSIY

= What You See In You

More important than what other people might see in you, is what you see in yourself. If you believe in you and what you are doing or want to do, then it will surely radiate out for others to see.

This morning's Linachu-ism. This was a sudden burst of thought that came to me as I prepared for a presentation this morning, thinking (hoping) what the people would see in me... Wish me luck!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Favourite Word (or Eat Pray Love Part 2)

Do you have a favourite word? I was reading Eat Pray Love and Elizabeth Gilbert says that her favourite Italian word is attraversiamo. Which means to cross over. She loves the way its combination of letters and sounds rolls off the tongue beautifully. Her friend Luca Spaghetti's (seriously that's his name) favourite English word is surrender.

So I got to thinking, what is my favourite word. Even if I have one. And one word instantly came to mind.

Serendipity

Yes, I love this word. I love how it sounds almost cute - that dipity ending. The beginning part seren- sounds and looks like serene. And the meaning, I especially love the meaning:

ser⋅en⋅dip⋅i⋅ty 
–noun
1. an aptitude for making desirable discoveries by accident.
2. good fortune; luck: eg. the serendipity of getting the first job she applied for.

See...Great meaning right? Right?

I also love the words: Bliss and Wonderful - hence the namesake of this blog.

Bliss is defined as supreme happiness, utter joy or contentment, heavenly. And wonderful - it means excellent, marvelous, great, capable of eliciting awe. Aren't those such nice definitions?? Heee...haha, I must have *geek* written all over me!

I'm still thinking of my favourite Malay word(s). How about you? Do you have any?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Cooking Again

Tonight I cooked Sup Tulang/Daging yang sedap. Hehe... no one else to compliment, terpaksa la puji diri sendiri. Cooking is pleasurable and wonderful. I started cooking again quite often for the past two months as mom in law was away and I suddenly got promoted as head chef of the household. Jamie Oliver and Nigella would be proud of me. Gordon Ramsay probably would have more to comment on! Heeee....I tried my best to cook to satisfy the boys palate. Which meant quite a lot of fried chicken and fried fish. Seriously, I cooked steamed fish one night, macam ndak kena sentuh pun. And veggies.. most of the time, I'd be the one to finish it off.

But anyway, I learnt to cook mostly by trial and by watching. Most of the time, I cooked just to satisfy my own tastebuds (which is the best way of learning and practising really). Back in school days, during the holidays, I would cook lunch for my dad and help out my mom for dinner. In Manchester, I would just watch my flatmate bake cakes (which my cakes never came out right before that) and when I came back here, I tried and hey...jadi!! I loved watching those cooking shows as well - a lot of good pointers and ideas for cooking. Hmm...like, did you know if you add in ice to your flour batter, it'll make the fried food crispier? Yep, I learnt that from Ready, Steady, Cook! And when whipping, what do soft peaks and stiff peaks look like - learnt it from Jamie Oliver!

I remember cooking curry with the boys the very first time in the UK. Haha...it didn't quite taste right and everyone kept asking, what more to add? Then, there were my usual cook outs with my friend Sabrina. Sabrina had a rented room in this lovely house in Lufbra and her landlady had this small dog that used to sit around in the kitchen. Imagine me the scaredy cat, I was worried the little fella was gonna pounce on me anytime. He never though! In the UK, I learnt to cook and love broccoli and salmon. I learnt to love cheese and mayonnaise. Seriously, before that I would be eating tuna with chilli sauce!

And cooking on the beach at OBS during our Kursus Induksi. That is one memory and experience I will always remember. The rice and fish turned out so delicious! Haha...probably because we were too tired and hungry from the hiking.

I have quite the sweet tooth, so I like sweet dishes. I like cooking honey chicken or ayam masak kicap (yang manis). These are my usual dishes if already mati kutu, don't know what else to cook. Even curries and rendang, I always add brown sugar for added sweetness. But tonight's sup daging tidak la manis. I love baking too but my only problem is that I love eating it as well. So the cakes or kuih would most probably be walloped by yours truly juga. Anyway, what else to cook for tomorrow ah?

(500) Days of Summer

...is one of the movies I watched this year that I liked. It is also one of Ben Lyon's (of Channel E!) top ten movies of the year. Light and simple, just as I like my movies. We are warned from the start though that this is not your typical love story or romance movie. The tagline goes:

Boy meets girl. Boy falls in love. Girl doesn't.

The movie also starts out with a narrator saying:

The following is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental. Especially you Jenny Beckman. B**ch.

Haha!! It's an interesting movie, romantic and humorous at times, meaningful and definitely with moments one (who is in love) can relate to. Watch it if you can!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Tis the Season to be Jolly

It's that time of the year again! Here's wishing all my friends a very Merry Christmas and a jolly jolly New Year. Enjoy the holidays, drive safe and don't eat too much. Hope you get what you wish for. xoxo.

One Dollar Laptop?

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Bidazzled. All opinions are 100% mine.

Have you finished your shopping? It's December after all, a lot of excuses to go shopping. Kids will be going back to school soon, Year End Sales are on and oh yeah, there's that little celebration called Christmas as well! My birthday was last week and this year I forgot to do one of my favourite activities - writing out my birthday wishlist! In hopes that some kind soul would be listening in (or rather reading) on my quiet wishes (more like hints..) and get me those items. Heeee...well, it saves them some time to think about what to get anyway!

I heard that the city is pretty packed though. Since last week, many people have been saying it's suicide to drive into the city. Unless, you are one of those people who don't mind being in a standstill for half an hour or so. Haahaaa, we KKian's have got it good actually. We moan and groan about being stuck in traffic for half an hour. Those people in bigger cities like KL are doing it on a daily basis and on longer duration! It's a worry though and I'm hoping we don't turn into grumpy road raging people like them.

Well, of course these days we have alternatives bah! Online shopping, gang! Heeheee. Local online sites and international ones are mostly very reliable in their deliveries and they have a good variety of stuff to chose from. If you are looking for bargains, most site have sales as well or you can try your luck at auction sites. One such site to check out is Bidazzled. It is a new online auction site with a cause. Bidazzled supports a lung cancer charity called The Ruch Foundation, selling branded, new, top name products at incredibly low prices in auctions that start for as low as 18 cents. Imagine winning a brand new laptop at just 1 dollar! It's possible! In order to start Bidazzling, one has to register as a bidder, for which you will receive complimentary bids to start out with. Even if you take part in a bid and don't win, you will receive bonus bids as a thank you for participating and to be used in future bids. They have a lot of other exclusive offers and highlights going on as well. Sounds fun and you don't have to burn out your wallet shopping at the same time. Bidazzled is currently only open to North American residents. Wouldn't it be great if we have something like this here too! Then instead of having to battle it out in traffic, you'd only need to let your wrist and fingers do the work.

Happy Holidays and Happy Shopping you lot!


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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Annual Year End Lunch

Had lunch with my lovely friends yesterday plus one little lady known as Nurul Alice Cullen :) Haha... yeah, it was just the four of us. So, it wasn't a big lunch as the title might imply but still, it was our annual year end lunch. Here's us at last year's session. Forgot to take pictures yesterday.


And so we have resolved to try our best at having this annual year end gathering and to meet up more next year. Just to catch up and laugh and chill, really. I think it's things like this that keep me sane. Little gatherings with friends. Knowing that I am not alone.


Bumped into another friend as we were leaving and she asked me, 'Kau rindu kawan lama?' (Miss your old friends) and my reply was a quick, 'Iya bah..' hehehe... and I actually love listening to them talk about their research work, what they are up to, how things are like at the uni. Just as I also enjoy reading, seeing and hearing about the successes and achievements of other friends there - completing their phds, winning awards, being published. Tumpang gembira dan bangga. Just as I know these two ladies are working so hard to achieve and that they will/are doing great things now. And raising families at the same time!


Looking forward to many more gatherings next year. xoxo

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Eat Pray Love

I'm currently reading Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert and I am feeling inspired! And energized! I feel like I need to do something right this moment. I feel like I need to go out and find myself a nice little loft where I can make my ashram and sit the whole day to read and write. I feel like I can run around the neighbourhood right now in my kain sarung. Haah! Well, maybe not!

I just started reading it and a lot of what she is saying is resonating with me. Like how doing something shouldn't necessarily be about practical application. Like her wanting to learn Italian despite everyone saying that it has no use. Italian is only spoken in Italy, they say! But what about the beauty and pleasure and excitement it brings to her, that has to speak for something. Rather than just having to do something for its practically.

I love her petition to God and how just believing it made things better and got something to happen - that's the law of attration for you.

I love the little details that she notices and writes about. I may be kidding myself here to say that she's just like me! I love subtle details and little surprises and gems that I think not everybody would notice.

Point is, reading just a bit of her book has got me this excited. Noticed the sudden number of blog posts the past few days? I am feeling inspired, Ok I already said that. BUT I am!
Thank you sis in law for finding this book for me. I hope it was pre-loved and the previous owner was as much excited about it as I am.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

It Takes Time

All good things takes time to flourish, would you agree? Well, I believe so. You can't expect something to take off in just one or two days, in some cases, even a year or two is still not enough. But if you truly believe in what you are doing, if you just persist and persevere despite the taunts and everyone telling you otherwise, then it will surely pay off, no?

We visited hubby's aunt's cafe this afternoon. It's a little corner cafe at Wisma Sabah. A location that one might question and wonder about. Well, to quote the aunty herself, when they first started it was hard to even sell off a few plates of nasi lemak. Daily and monthly earnings weren't much. Little did she know that there would be this massive development called Suria Sabah right next door! And now, the nasi lemak isn't enough, daily earnings are high, and they even open til late in the evening to cater for all the sudden traffic of people in the area!

So, persistence pays ya. Things take time. Don't hang in your towels too quick. Don't listen to those people who say you can't do it. Who ask you to go do something they deem is better and the norm. Who actually don't know squat about what you are doing and never take the time to hear you out. You never know when a Suria Sabah will land smack bang right next to you. You never know where it could lead you. Just hang in there and believe that good things will follow. I believe.

Cerita Melayu

I caught this show called Ghost on 8tv last weekend, a dual language local tv drama. I have glimpsed it before but didn't dare watch because of the title. Takut. But last Sunday, I watched it - what I presume to be a re-run, I still don't know when it actually airs - and I was captivated. To the point that I was still thinking about it the next day. The main star is Cheryl Samad and there's also Anding (don't know his full name but he was one of the former AF stars).

It's seldom that I find local shows worthy of merit. But this one is exactly the type that I have always liked and wished we had more of. It was modern, it was intriguing and it had non of that usual Malay style over the top drama. You know, the kind with overacting, screaming and fighting, etc. Well, there have been quite a few of these modern type shows that I enjoyed in the past - hmm.. can't remember the titles! The one with Cheryl Samad and the Chinese guy, the one with Zizan & Melissa Maureen (the iklan Ponds one), there was one that was sponsored by Sony (the one with Ako Mustapha, Elaine Daly, etc)... hahaa...this is so bad, I can't remember any of their titles! Way way before that was Kopitiam, but that was more of a sitcom. Another one that I try to catch these days is Blogger Boy. Cheryl Samad also. And these shows usually air on either TV3, ntv or 8tv! When is RTM gonna follow suit and move into these type of shows. Asyik-asyik all those old fashioned dramas yang jalan cerita mesti ada gaduh-gaduh, pukul-pukul (yang tidak real), over the top acting. And the actors that do these new age type shows are more or less the same people most of the time. Can you ever imagine Cheryl Samad doing an RTM drama? Has she ever?

Speaking of these cerita Melayu, I caught an interview some time ago, of the late Yasmin Ahmad. She was asked how she felt with all the criticism and complaints of her movies. And her answer, I loved. She said, 'Why is it that all those Malay dramas that portray husband and wife fighting, the husband hitting the wife, divorce, etc..accepted by people when all they seem to portray is hate and bad things?' Some of those complaints against her movies are those scenes where a husband and wife bathe together (Rabun?) and another scence where the husband and wife laugh and play and chase each other around (Sepet). She continued that her intention in those movies was to portray love. Why is that not acceptable? She said that she believes that God judges us by our intentions and her intention was just to portray love. I loved her answer.

I managed to watch Sepet and Mukhsin in the few weeks preceding Yasmin Ahmad's passing. Both are beautiful movies. I loved those subtle little touches of hers, one that you may only notice if you are looking. I forgot how romantic Jason was in Sepet, I cried when I watched it again. I loved that little cameo by Jason (it's easier to call him this) & Amani in Mukhsin. There should be more of these type of movies and shows, don't you think?

Oh, I have to mention this other thing. I caught a bit of this Malay drama whilst I was waiting for hubby at the airport the other day. There was this guy, dressed in Silat attire, sitting at a waterfall, meditating and he proclaimed (in translation) 'Oh God, with your consent, I will you to show me the Keris Bima Sakti and its powers...' something like that... and lo and behole, the Keris appeared in the waterfall before his very eyes! Tidak ka something like syirik tu? And the station that broadcast it has no qualms about this and people actually watch it! :O

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Yesterday

As Vanessa Carlton sang Just a day, just an ordinary day...What did I do yesterday? I spent the morning at home with my darling Yasmin, who woke up at a record 5am to play with her new Sweet Secret toys. I kept asking her, Are you sleepy? You can take a nap if you want to. But she was not having any of it and kept calling out to me as I tried to send some e-mails, 'No mommy! Don't use the computer!', 'Mommy, quick! Play with this toy!' Hehe...habis aku!

I went out for a meeting at noon. Closed a deal which was OK but I'm not too happy with myself for giving into the person's request. I should have stood my ground better. Then went to pick up printing at Kolombong when the dark clouds that were surrounding the city finally gave in. It started to rain. Very heavily. Got my package and sometime later, driving in the car, they played GreenDay's Time of Your Life on the radio. One of my favourites. I love those lines

another turning point, a fork stuck in the road
time drives you by the wrist directs you where to go
so make the best of this task and don't ask why
it's not a question but a lesson learnt in time
it's something unpredictable but in the end it's right
i hope you had the time of your life


This song always gets me thinking about my life and where I'm going. A little later, I switched to my cd and there was James Morrison singing Please Don't Stop the Rain. Heh..

Drove to Kompleks Karamunsing to pick up a cheque and do some deliveries. It was still raining cats and dogs plus it was crazy congested. So many people, so many cars. In the car, I remembered thinking about the authors Paulo Coelho and Elizabeth Gilbert (I just got her book Eat Pray Love!). I thought of how captivating these two are and how I wished I could write like them. 4th floor parking in Karamunsing was full and after going around a few times I decided to just park on the 5th floor and brave it through the rain eventhough I had to bring some papers with me. Didn't have any bag or plastic bag and had to improvise to keep the papers dry. Made it. Pheww. On my way back, it was still running. I was about to run for it to my car when a guy stopped and looked at me and offered to walk me with this umbrella. Hmm.. nice gesture but I just said no thanks, I was OK. Just a little rain.

Was due to pick up hubby at the airport. He was on a day trip to Tawau for a meeting. 3pm he called and said the flight was delayed. Because of the weather in KK. Tawau was fine. Ended up arriving around 430pm. We had a little late afternoon meal at Grace Point then drove home.

Night time was spent watching the Biggest Loser Asia and me wondering how I managed to gain back at the weight I lost last year. Yep, don't be surprised by a ballooned up me, if you see me around town. That would be me and not my evil twin. Actually, I do know how I gained the weight - cakes, roti kahwin, nasi lemak and nasi gorengs for the past 6 months or so! *Sigh* Must do something. I'm starting to feel some joint pains. Perhaps it's because of the weight, perhaps it's the ageing. *Double sigh*

That's about it that I can remember about yesterday's thoughts. Why does it matter anyway? Well, yesterday I turned 33. And who knows maybe someday, I'd be thinking back to what I was doing when I turned 33, what were my thoughts and who was I then. Yep, just another day but all the same, memorable in its own way I guess.

This post was meant to be written on the 15th. Ended up writing it on the 16th, hence the title Yesterday. But only just finishing it and posting it now on the 18th.

Friday, December 11, 2009

For the TVholics

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Charter. All opinions are 100% mine.

Yes, my name is Linachu and I am a TVholic. I watch a lot of TV. I always have. Since I was a wee little girl, I always loved movies and tv shows. I grew up on shows like Eight is Enough and Silverspoon and Growing Pains and The Facts of Life. Haha, remember those? What classics. Even in my boarding school days, there was always time in between prep classes and lights off, to sneak in a little bit of Falcon Crest or Anne of Green Gables or Life Goes On. Weekends and holidays would be spent.. you guessed it, in front of the TV! And what more when Astro made its way to our shores, Hallelujah! My life could not be more complete. Heeee!

And how about now, you ask? Have I managed to free myself of this addiction? Did I make it through TVholics Anonymous? Hehe... Are you kidding? Of course not! I still watch as much TV as I used to. That is... when the little girl is not demanding for her Playhouse Disney and Cartoon Network, when there are no footie matches on that the hubby just must watch, when I'm not off doing all the house chores, when I'm not too tired to do so... Hah! So OK, I'm not the TV queen that I used to be.

I watch what I can, when I can. And there are still so many great shows going on now that I just have to catch up on them when I can. House, Heroes, Grey's Anatomy, Gossip Girl are my must sees. Then of course there are my favourite reality shows - The Amazing Race, Project Runway and oh I just saw Giuliana & Bill the other day. Sigh - Bill Rancic is still hot! Then there are those other shows that I watch just to fill my time.. my current favourite game show is Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader? Hehe...

Ondemand

If only we have something like Charter Digital's On Demand here. It's free to access and there are over 6,000 movies and shows to watch anytime you want. No waiting, no schedules. If you missed one of your favourite shows, they are available here the day after they air on TV. Free! Ain't that cool. You can learn more at charter.net/ondemand. It's also perfect for your kids when they just can't wait for the next airing of their favourite cartoon shows! Then both mommies and kiddies will be happy bunnies. Well OK, daddies too I guess! As a bonus, you can also get updates and fun extras on Charter’s Facebook page. With something like this, no doubt, the TV queen can reign supreme again! Hehehe...

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Pancakes

I made pancakes for breakfast this morning. I've been thinking about it for a while now since we have some yummy maple syrup that sis-in-law brought back from the USofA. And so this morning, I finally made them. Hubby gave some exagerated compliments (mesti ada something ni...hehe) but I still haven't manage to get it into those plump, fluffy, gebu pancakes that I always see in magazines or in ads. Mine seem limp and thin and flat. Even with the addition of baking soda that many have said is the ingredient to fluffiness. I think it's all about the consistency. Guess I still need to do some experimenting on this.

Anyway, remember I told you about that teacher that wanted to add me on his FB list. I still haven't responded. But something happened that sort of made me realize why I had doubts about adding him in the first place.

Probably two weeks back, a friend had posted on her status that she managed to make the perfect pancakes! Voilaa..being the pancake perfectionist wannabe that I am, I replied to her post asking her what was the secret. What was her recipe? A perfectly simple and innocent reply in my mind. A couple of days later the teacher posted a reply after mine which was seemingly dedicated to myself instead of pancake maker friend. He wrote something of this sort

Belajar tinggi-tinggi, nak buat lempeng pun nak berguru? Pergi la cari formula kimia sendiri. Tutup la universiti kalau macam ni.

Seriously! He wrote that. OMG! I was gobsmacked. I hate, hate, hate this sort of comment. Urghh! My gosh, I was just asking about a recipe. Something normal women, people do. What relevance is it on my qualifications or work experience that he has to make a comment like that? You were my teacher and that was that. Now we're all adults and I'm not in school anymore to have to listen and accept snide comments like that! I don't want to have to read such comments each and everytime I post something trivial (as I often do) on my FB. So maybe he has his good intention in saying so.. but it just didn't come off well for me. And so, Mr Teacher Sir, at the sake of being labelled sombong again, I just don't think I'm gonna add you on for now!

Owhh..what started out as a beautiful post about fluffy pancakes turned into a rant. Had to vent. Promise more cheerful and fluffy posts soon.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

For Everything Else, There's Mastercard..

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Syndacast. All opinions are 100% mine.

It's the end of the year again. My my, hasn't this year just flown by in a jiffy. Seems like just a while ago that we were saying hello to the new year, getting used to writing down 2009 in our dates and look now, Christmas decorations are already all around and children are off on school holidays.

Speaking of this holiday season, wouldn't it be a great time to get away on a break, take some time off to relax and recharge before the new year dawns upon us again? Were would your ideal holiday destination be? There are many great places that I can think of that I would love to visit - Singapore, HongKong, Thailand, Australia, even our good old Kuala Lumpur! Shopping, sightseeing, taking in the local cuisine, the local vibes, enjoying the fact that you can take it slow whilst the rest of the world seems to go on like clockwork. Hmmm..Just the thought of it gives me a breath of fresh air.

Now, wouldn't it be even sweeter if you managed to land a great bargain for your holiday. Sure, you want to have a blast of a holiday but you don't want to burn your bank account at the same time! Agree? Then, check this out - how about staying at a beautiful, luxurious hotel of your choice, 3 nights for the price of 2!! You can enjoy a Free night's stay with MasterCard at 188 participating Accor hotels in Asia with this MasterCard Cardholder - Exclusive Deal. Participating hotels include the Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Mercure, ibis and all seasons. Great bargain, right? And now, think of how you can use that saved amount to go shopping instead! Double weee!

There is also an opportunity to win a 3 night stay in a private villa at the 5-star Pullman Sanya Yalong Bay Resort! Simply make a booking and pay with your MasterCard upon check-out to be eligible to enter the draw to win the 3 night stay with complimentary daily breakfast for 2. There are 10 of these prizes to be won! Imagine...your very own private pool, a private garden and outdoor massage area and jacuzzi. Oh wow. Magnifico! Now I'm not one for advocating excessive spending but on this one, what are yer waiting for? Get those MasterCards out!

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Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Hello December

It's my favourite month of the year!
Well, hello there December
I'm happy you are here.
I'm hoping you bring me some answers
(to my own questions),

a whole load of strength to continue doing
what I am doing,

a lighter shoulder,
the opportunity to dream and love again,
more moments of laughter and joy,
and well...OK, some actual gifts would be lovely too!

Oh sweet December, please make my wishes come true.

He's a Doctor

I'm 33 this year and frankly speaking, just too old to be having a crush. But I can't help it. It's this cutie that has got me palpitating.

The main reason that I watch the show House. Although if he left..I would probably still watch it because it is brilliant but I'd be very very very very sad. Did y'all know that Jennifer Morrison has left the show, by the way? Tsk tsk for Chameron but oh well, thankfully Chase is still there and back on the team = more scenes compared to last season's sneeze-and-you'll-miss-him scenes.

Also thankful that someone in this world wide web universe actually has a blog dedicated to this favourite doctor of mine so that I can feast my eyes on new pictures of him daily. Heeee! Look at these:
This is very recent! Love the shorter hair! Love the t-shirt!

If you look past the cutie doc for just one smidgeon on a second, you'll notice on the wall, a picture of Hugh Laurie looking kinda like a drag queen from his Blackadder days!

Nahh..33 is not too old to have a crush! Look at all those ladies, most of em mommies - who are going gaga over a certain vampire or werewolf... at least this one's a doctor! Heeeeeee

Pics taken from http://community.livejournal.com/jessepixdaily