Isolation activities..

Snow White the Disney Princess

Last 2 weeks, J and I were in isolation. A classmate of hers was or maybe still is as he is not back in school yet, is positive for Covid-19. Unless you have been living off the grid with no access to civilization or maybe on another planet, you will know that Covid-19 is not a trifle thing. The whole of 2020 can surely be remembered in the future at Covid 2020. The year the whole world was brought to their knees.

Anyway, I digress. So, since she was to be home the whole day for 2 whole weeks we set about getting some activities to do to pass our time. I have seen this particular activity but I have never done them. When M brought the first one back J couldn’t wait to start while I was dreading the possibility of the millions of coloured plastic pins all over the floor. ButΒ  I managed to stop her and coax her into starting on them bright and early the next day when I had more time to organise and do it with her.

The next day we started on the first one. The first set was a set of Disney portrais of Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Daisy. In the pictures you will see that the whole piece is made up of 4 smaller pieces put together. So we had a portrait piece if each character. When we started, it took us a while to get the rhythm going. Also, it was not that easy for J to push those little pins into the holes piercing through the paper design on top. After a while she got the hang of it. She stops once in while to rest her little hands or when she gets carried away in her thoughts while chattering away. She chatters non-stop. I had to play the ‘game of silence’ which she loses every time, just to catch a respite from her constant chatter. πŸ˜…

How the picture is made up
The paper design that it comes in

We finished that in 4 days. I limited it to one a day. It was actually enough cause each one took us about 2-3 hours depending on how chatty or distracted we are. You could probably guess that I did most of the work but she was just so cute!! I found this avtivity to be very relaxing and cathatic. I didn’t have to think, like in board game or a puzzle, which we also did in that 2 weeks. Just grab a pin of whatever colour we working on, from the bowls I have prepared and just stick it in wherver I see the corresponding colour. Easy peasy! We finished it in no time at all!

Then, M got this one. This set came with 2 Disney princesses and we had to choose. We could only do one. The choice was between Snow White or Rapunzel. You can safely guess which one won. πŸ˜‰ This took us 4 days too. I can truly say the outcome is really beautiful! So much so that we are thinking of framing it! Though I joked to M that it would probably cost more to frame it than to actually buy it. It was €12 for this set. The frame would probably cost us at least €50. πŸ˜…πŸ˜…

After we were done, i told J to hold it up as I wanted to tale a picture of her with it. She gave me a cheeky face as I took the picture. I don’t think she intended to posr like Snow White but it turned out to look like she did.

Posing like Snow White

I am glad we did this. I liked it so much that I am thinking of getting another one. Something to do for when I am stressed or in need of some distraction? How about you guys? Has anyone tried this? If you haven’t, you should. Then you will know what I mean by it veing relaxing and cathartic.

Actually, now that isolation is over and i am back to work, I don’t know if I will have the time to do this again. But for now, I am glad that we are healthy and that J is back in school. Freedom!! πŸ˜†

Am off to get some alone and ‘me’ time. Till next time! Ciao and Toodeloos!!

Upgrading myself

Photo taken from Pinterest

It has been a while since I have blogged. This time, things have aligned for me and also thanks to Nowrid I have rediscovered a part of me that I have put on the back burner to be a mother. Between work and motherhood, everything else was not that important. Then, Covid happened, everything came to a halt and my youngest is now in school. I find myself with more time to re-evaluate my life. Things that I couldn’t do before I could now look into.

When I said things were aligning for me, I really meant it. An Italian company approached me before to work with them 3 years back but I couldn’t as J was not even a year old and she was with me most of the day. 2 years later, J has just started kindergarten and I was getting used to the free time when they approached me again. This time, I was very interested. I was also very excited and nervous. Though I am on social media, I have never done any social media marketing of this kind (cosmetics and beauty) and my main business of exhibition design and construction didn’t need the same type of marketing. Also my main business has been in business for almost 30 years, and we have ties and experience in the business that supersedes this new company.

I was looking around. Checking out social media of similar companies. Doing online research on similar companies to figure out a way to market this company and to see where we fit in the grand scheme of things. All this researching open my eyes to the power of digital marketing. I was intrigued but I didn’t know where to start. I was also searching online for more info to learn about it. All this researching made me feel helpless.

So when my sis sent me a message and asked if I was interested in a course for Malaysians offered by BAC, and for free too, I jumped at the chance. This course, has been the best thing that has happened to me in a while. Also the best investment of my time. Nowrid‘s easy going, straight forward explanation of how digital marketing works was a godsend. He made it look easy. He was also open to answer all our questions and doubts. What was more interesting was that he taught from his experience and gave alternatives and brought in other experts of other platforms that he might be so conversant in.

He gave me hope that I may one day actually know what I am doing with digital marketing. All I have to do now is to apply all this knowledge and learn as I go along in my new venture into the world of beauty.

I am a strong believer in that everything happens for a reason and I know that things aligned in such a way that I was meant to take this course by Nowrid and will grow from this. Thank you Nowrid for opening my eyes to the world of digital marketing and a making it less scary for novices like me. Lets see where I will be in a year or so.

Till the next time, Toodeloos!

Timing is forever off

My timing for blogging is forever off. I think of the random-est things at the most random times and it is usually when I can’t blog. It is because I am driving, putting the kids to bed then subsequently falling asleep myself or having a epiphany while I am with kids which is almost 20 hours a day.

Thanks to my babysitter (godsend) I have about 4 hours Monday to Friday excluding holidays that I can get some time for myself. Which I subsequently fill with work, physiotherapy, and all other appointments ie. hair, nails, banks, dentist, doctor and grocery shopping and cooking if I need to. In the end when I don’t need to do anything, I literally don’t. πŸ˜€ Does that make sense? I also spend some of that time to be with M. We work together cause we have businesses together. We used to travel together very often as well. Now less so. So when I don’t have the kids, I will go the the meetings and other appointments with him so that he doesn’t have to inform me of them later.

Now that I have some time, since I have to do some work urgently, I gave J her tablet. The only way get her to leave me alone and not bang on the keypad while I am working. Not even with the TV on on the kids channel does the trick. I am forcing myself to write. Forcing because I can see that my flow of thought is not there. I feel that I am incoherent and just having a verbal diarrhea. But I know that I have to try. I also get frustrated that when I do find some time, I don’t really remember anymore what I wanted to blog about. Then my mind wanders and then I find myself on Instagram, FB or Youtube, Netflix or Viki. I am going through a documentary phase. Devouring documentaries like there is no tomorrow. Mostly criminal and historical or both.

This makes me feel like when I first went back to school. After not having to write anything longer than possibly 3 sentences, I found it so difficult to even write 500 words for my first English 101 essay. I was despairing, thinking , oh no…how am I ever going to write my papers as things get harder. Thank God, all I needed was more reading and more writing. I managed to graduate so I guess I did do something right and what I wrote coherent enough for a final thesis. *peace sign*

Sigh…absolutely incoherent again. Could you get my flow of thought here? I think I want to attribute this to mommy brains. You know, the same ones as the pregnancy brains? πŸ˜› Ok, I am just trying not to take responsibility. Just looked at the word count at the bottom and I am approaching 500. Whee!! Who would have thought this incoherent verbal diarrhea can even reach 500 words! Ah…proud mommy brains moment! πŸ™‚

Signing off and I apologised if you came here to read about something more interesting and got this. I will try to make an effort on the next one. I update on Instagram more often. See you there!

 

A Tribute To Genoa

This video was sent to me in a WhatsApp group. I couldn’t help but tear up when I was listening to this. *Sniff*

Genoa is genuinely crippled by this disaster. The city is literally divided in 2. So many areas are closed and so many families have been evacuated and so many businesses affected. Even giants like IKEA are feeling the pinch in just 20 days from the collapse of the bridge. You can only imagine the damage to smaller businesses.

Some big companies had to layoff or rather suspend some personnel indefinitely as well some parts of their building is right underneath the bridge so it is not safe for them to work.

Now the city is also at almost a standstill especially during peak hours as traffic that usually passes by the city via the highway has now got to go through the city and back onto the highway. Good thing is that highway is free for now. Even the Telco companies are waiving this month’s bill in solidarity to businesses within the vicinity of the bridge. Our business is one of them.

Some places are so dead…it is disconcerting and sad.

I hope we bounce back soon. I hope that the displaced families will have everything sorted before winter comes.

I ❀️ Genoa!!

Selamat Merdeka Malaysia

Malaysia is celebrating its 61st birthday today!!! Happy birthday!

The Star newspaper in Malaysia is running a campaign calling for Malaysians around the world to use this picture above and pose with it, post it on any platform and send back messages for our national day. So, I am posting it here for my part.

This year, for my birthday a few days ago, all I wanted for my birthday was a Malaysian meal. 😁 But the nearest to us was in Milan. πŸ˜… In the end, I dragged M to watch Crazy, Rich Asians with me. Obviously, I knew he will not like the movie, he hardly watches anything, so a rom-com was pushing it. But I told him this was what I wanted for my birthday. Just him with me. He can even sleep in the cinema if he wanted to. I got my wish. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜†

While I was browsing through Facebook, a video from Global Malaysia Network caught my eye. This song brings me back to my school’s days. When this song first came out, we had to sing it in school and also it was a choir competition song. I have sung this song so much that the lyrics comes to mind immediately every time I hear this song. This time, while watching this video, it brought tears to my eyes.

I have posted the link here. I hope it works.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/globalmalaysian/permalink/293329541280559/

Malaysia,happy birthday! Merdeka!!

Love you!!😍

β€οΈπŸ’“πŸ’•πŸ’–πŸ’—πŸ’ž

Been away too long….

I have been wanting to get back to blogging for such a long time that it is personally tormenting me inside.

What the real problem is this, I don’t know where to begin. So after mulling over this for forever, I have decided that is should just write this short blog post to start off and let’s see if I get my writing mojo back.

Lately, I stumbled upon a Korean documentary or talk show series (not sure if they should be called this) that features foreigners who have settled in Korea. Their lives and their concerns. Got me thinking about a few things of my experience here in Italy. Maybe I can write more about it in my next blog post. It is called “My neighbour, Charles”.

I will make a promise here now that I will post something this weekend. After all it is my birthday on Monday. πŸ˜πŸ˜‰

2017 just flew by…

Where did 2017 go? I remember it just like it was yesterday when we were braving snowstorms that grounded our flight in Istanbul for days. I remember the havoc that the airport was in after many days of flight cancellations and delays when we finally got into Istanbul. We were lucky to be diverted to another town, Elazig, and set up at a newly opened hotel (literally opened the day before we arrived) for 3 days before we got the clearance to finally fly into Istanbul and make further arrangements for our next flight home. Finally in Istanbul we waited a whole day for our flight that kept getting delayed till it was finally cancelled and I insisted that I do not want to be on the next flight out but in 2 days time as it was after midnight and they are finally flying people out and I know from my experience, that the airline will do its best to clear its backlog and we might still be bumped off the next flight we thought we were already booked on. With children, I rather we rest well and check out the city and finally get to really fly out instead of waiting around in the airport. By this time, the airport was already out of many things. A family was stranded so long that they ran out of diapers and couldn’t find any on the airport and they couldn’t get out of the either. Luckily I had enough to pass them some. Poor family. We finally got in on the 12th of January when we left on the 6th.

It felt like it was just yesterday! Now it is already the 19th of December!! 2017 has been a beautiful year and seeing that it just flew by it must have been a good year too. Because only when you are having fun, is when time flies. Little munchkin has grown so much and is a little tornado. The hashtag that I gave her on Instagram is #TornadoJ. I can actually say she is living up to it. Little bumblebee is not so little anymore. She is only 3 but taller than most 5 year olds. She has always had a strong character and I can also say that she is also living up to the hashtag that I gave her on Instagram, #HurricaneZ. My little forces of nature. I am so lucky to have them.

So, thank you God for a wonderful 2017 and for my family and all that I have been given and for keeping everyone safe and bring on 2018!!

A very Merry Christmas to all who celebrate and a Happy New Year to all!!

adding hashtags here #feelinggrateful #feelingloved #thankfulforeverything

 

Spending time with my bumblebee..

Recently, I have decided to dedicate some time to my elder daughter. Not that I don’t already. Just more individual time with here. She and I alone without her sister. So far, we have done it twice. I swap with the babysitter and she takes care of J instead of Z for that day and I take Z out. I can do it now as the exhibition season is winding down and my own client’s shows are over and the others I only need to be in a supportive role. So I can take time off and roam the streets, so to speak, with my daughter.

Our first outing we went to have ice cream in the drizzling rain in Boccadasse and went unique rock/stone hunting on the pebble beach. Then we went to scale the rock wave breakers. She was really excited as it was her first time. She wanted to keep going from rock to rock, to the water’s edge and back. then out again. Even interrupting lovebirds wanting some alone time out on the rocks. Had to stop her and distract her to another rock or pathway. She kept pointing to them and saying that she wants to go to where they are. She has already figured out that since those guys could get there, it means we can too. πŸ˜€ Poor lovebirds…sorry we nearly ruined you evening. We kind of did, as we kept circling around them from rock to rock…

Finally go her back on shore and distracted her to go up on the rooftop balcony to look down on where we were. Had to leave after less than 5 minutes as there were a group of smoking teenagers and it was not pleasant breathing in second hand smoke while trying to enjoy the view. Z had her kids scooter with her and it was not easy navigating the old pebbled and cobbled streets in Boccadasse. The wheels were so small that it got caught in every nook and she fell so many times. It was more fun for her after, when we finally got back up to Corso Italia. Then we scooted our way to a bar so that mummy could have her coffee fix. Then we called it a day. Because it wasn’t the best of weathers that day.

The next “mummy and me” outing, I took her to the Natural Science Museum a place I have been wanting to visit for some time now. I couldn’t find the museum’s website in English but they have the official website the region for Culture in Liguria which will give you more info on it. Or this short overview of museums in Genoa here. Didn’t visit it before because I think Z wouldn’t have been able to appreciate even a fraction of it when she was younger. Not that she is much older now, but she could at least now, identify some of the animals and best part of it all, they are having a special Dinosaur exhibit. She loved the dinosaur exhibits more than anything else there. She also liked the primates and the birds. Also the butterflies but was petrified when she saw the bones of a whale hanging above us in one of the halls. She couldn’t get out of there fast enough.

The best adventure of the day was that I didn’t have any cash with me and after visiting a few banks, I still couldn’t get any cash. Have I told you how much I dislike Italian banks? I do! With a vengeance. Luckily I could pay with my ATM card at the museum but couldn’t buy any souvenirs cause since the dinosaur exhibit was a temporary exhibit, they had a different till for the temporary shop that doesn’t support debit cards or cashless payment. Maybe it was a blessing in disguise. I could tell Zoe that we didn’t have any cash to buy the useless toy that she wanted on top of the dinosaur books that I wanted to buy for her. I could go back another day to buy the books without her. πŸ˜›

Then we had ice cream for her and a coffee for me, courtesy of the coins that I had with me. Scraped together €4, okay…it wasn’t that bad. I had more than enough coins just not enough to buy 2 books. Then we ended the evening with a bicycle ride around the office area with a cousin. All in all, fun times.

Shall leave you with her squealing bicycle moments. 

Bak Kut Teh

Did I tell you I made some bak kut teh the other day, and it was awesome!! Missing the real deal but this is as close to it as I can get for now. It was really good too. Managed to get all the ingredients too. All hail the Asian supermarket.
I took me close to 3 days to get all the ingredients. Apart from the laziness, it is the fact that parking would be a nightmare where I first intended to go and with a baby in tow it would have been most inconvenient having to park by the roadside bundle baby up and rush in and out and put groceries in the car as quick as possible and try not to get run over whule trying as fast as possible to un-bundle baby back into her car seat. So I tried to out it off as long as possible but the craving was strong. 

In the end, my babysitter saved the day. She told me of another new shop which I also thought would be impossible to get to, but she told me a day later when I lamented on the lack of parking that this place has its own carpark area right behind. Now I only have to look for that entryway. Which I did easily thanks to her great and way to follow instructions. 

Thanks to her my craving was satisfied. Albeit after 3 days. I don’t cook often. Just wanted to share it. πŸ˜€

Night!