In between long periods of anxious, impatient waits and sometimes unbearable ennui, I have mastered ways to calm my listless mind.

It’s really simple, really…Brew a cuppa tea, stare out the window & have your notebook ready!

I do this a lot, but I feel Sundays are always the best time. Some people give thanks on Sunday – although we really should be giving thanks every day, if we’re giving any at all. But I like to call this my musings. Just a little corner for my mind to run free with gratitude for the week that just passed and gearing up for the week ahead.

I hope you will enjoy this little snippets of my week that I am grateful for.


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double rainbow

I’m sure a number of you caught this on Monday, but how lucky was I? I was just minding my own tired business when I suddenly looked out the windows and gave the loudest gasp anyone can give in this quiet, peaceful flat, flung the French doors open to the balcony and ran out there admiring the beauty (and my luck). I also forgot that it was cold, good thing I had my cardigan on. I probably took in the best view until I realised I didn’t want to miss a shot and my phone wasn’t with me. I managed this shot, just right before the fog breezed in and went right folks, nothing to see here, back to your homes everyone”. I must’ve stood there for a while, just feeling ever so lucky to have caught sight of my second double rainbow. Also, it was the BIGGEST rainbow I have ever seen in my life. It was magical. And then I caught another double rainbow just yesterday! How amazing!

 

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celebrating C.’s birthday…in person!

I am very, very happy that I finally have the chance to shower C. with lots of birthday love in person! Technically, this is my first time celebrating his birthday lol. We had a nice home-cooked meal (he was kindly subjected to my cooking & new recipes attempts) & an array of unique cakes for him to pick from – but of course he went for his classic carrot cake. It was also nice that he got home from work early, he actually surprised me by coming home earlier than I thought (I wasn’t ready!!!). But I supposed the best bits was almost successfully throwing him a small surprise birthday dinner with a handful of his closest friends over the weekend. I say almost because he said he had some sort of suspicion but then brushed it off, until we got to his favourite restaurant (Honest Burgers) and the lady who welcomed us in betrayed me. She cheerily announced that everyone was here and waiting. The dramatic face-palming happened in my head as C. chuckled and went “Hah, your cover got blown.” Massive eye-rolling right there. He still somewhat got pleasantly surprised at the company, so I guess that’s a success still, right?!

 

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curling up in bed with a book & a cuppa

That sigh of contentment as you sink into bed, wrap yourself up in the duvet, and sip some hot tea. And then proceed to escape in your book of choice. Heaven.

I was going to wrap it up, but I had a thought…and this might be a little bit odd but can we please take a minute to be thankful for:

the dishwasher

I know, I know. Y’all probably think I’m strange, but honestly! Back home in Kuala Lumpur (and Singapore), no one I know has a dishwasher. It was always hard work of washing the dishes by hand. You may think it’s menial but imagine the skills you require to get rid of burnt crusts at the bottom of pans etc. When C. found out I’ve been living with a dishwasher (when I was studying here) & used it as a drying rack for my pots and pans, he might have bowled over in laughter or in pain, or both. Then he started introducing the wonders of a dishwasher and ever since then, I’ve never been able to imagine how I can ever live my life now without a dishwasher.

I had a rather grey week this last week and I am just glad there were things that made me happy.

I hope everyone had a fabulous Sunday and is well-rested for the week ahead!

Toodles. ♥

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“Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,
Bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens,
Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favourite things.”

I can have so much love for so many things. Too many things, sometimes.

I thought it would be a good idea to curate a list of things that brings joy to my life and share with y’all every month. I would do it every week but there is already a new weekly feature coming up on Sundays (so be sure to check that out too!). In a way, I wouldn’t feel all too bad if I were to miss out blogging at times. It’s like sharing mini snippets of my life!

So here you go, my February FavesUnfortunately, no pancakes were involved in this post. 

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the new flat

May I just say it is really nice to have the space and the freedom to walk around in my jammies at 12 noon and not be judged by anyone else but my teddy bears. And it is really nice not to be living out of my suitcases anymore. Also, because this flat is new very new, that’s sort of a plus point because we almost went crazy shopping for new flat things and that was very exciting. But what is more exciting is now that we are a lot more settled, I AM QUEEN OF THE KITCHEN AND I CAN UNLEASH MY CLEAN FREAK AND NO ONE CAN JUDGE. And I make good food. At least that’s what C. tells me. 

Pssst. – Totally loving the Verveine fragrance from The White Company, plus it was a gift! It took every ounce in C. to hold me back from buying everything else in the store after that.

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my new KeepCup

So I have raved about getting a KeepCup since forever but never actually gotten it. It was one of those things you know you want, but never got around to getting it, collecting cobwebs in the back of your mind. A couple of Saturdays ago, C. took me out on a surprise shopping spree and he simply refused to tell me what he was going to get me. Until we finally entered Selfridges and I was making silly wild guesses like Oooohhh you’re getting me perfume//No, you must be getting me a bag!//Or , *gasp!* you’re getting me a lipstick! etc. He found it highly amusing that I was coming up with such expensive wants and getting myself all excited just trying to guess. But really, who knew he can be such a sweetheart, he remembers exactly what KeepCup I have always wanted – even the colour (The KeepCup Brew Limited Edition cork; black lid and plug)! If you know of KeepCup, you will know that they have so many options on material, colours, sizes, it’s almost understandable why I never really made up my mind even though I already knew what I want lol. I am really pleased with this little gift, it has now taken over all my favourite mugs and has served me my mornings, afternoons, evenings, even those in-between period cups of tea!

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My Family & Other Animals

As I have mentioned in my post yesterday, C. is apparently intending to surprise me with a book a month – books he thinks I would enjoy reading. This is his first pick of the year and I was already cackling with glee in the first few pages. I might do a review when I’m done but it has already hit the spot on my February Faves!

 

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tulips

Tulips are always going to be my favourite, regardless of what month it is. It is my February Faves because I decided to go out on Valentine’s day and buy myself some blooms. These bright tulips were only £2.35 or something, and they brightened up my entire week. Sadly, they’re gone now and just writing about this makes me want to go out and buy more blooms.

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starflowers

At least this is what I think they’re called. C. managed a surprise Valentine’s bouquet with the aid of Bloom & Wild and I have watched them bloom all of the last 2 weeks. The bouquet is beautiful, the roses and spray roses sweet as ever. But what caught my eye are these starflowers. When they first arrived, they were not flowering yet so I didn’t think much of them. A few days later, I was wow-ed by the blooming starflowers! Look at them! They also seem to last well and long; they’re doing much better than the roses right now. I will definitely be looking out for them when I pop to the florist next! Most certainly making it into my favourite flowers list!

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Sundate & Sunday roast

Finally. I believe the last time I had a Sunday roast was 2 months ago. I’m a big fan of Sunday roast these days, and C. & I are finally free this last Sunday of the month to go for a Sundate lunch. It has been almost a year since we first walked into The Princess of Shoreditch and we loved it there. We had lamb the last time and this time as well, but we definitely remembered it differently. It was still very good, I loved every bit of it (and the date) but we are looking forward to check out other places for Sunday lunch. If you do have any recommendations/suggestions, do let me know, I would be only too pleased to rush over for my next Sunday roast!

I hope your February was just as colourful as mine!

What are your favourite things this month?

Toodles. ♥

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If you have been following my journey in the last few months, you would realise that it has been 5 months since I dropped everything and left sunny Singapore for cold, grey London skies.

I won’t lie; I have naively thought that the transition would be a little more smooth sailing. Oh, life’s transition is perfectly fine – I feel very much at home here, all thanks to close friends, boyfriend, & his wonderful family. But the progress and process to attain a right to live and work in the UK is far more complicated and cumbersome. The never-ending requirements and hidden fine prints are enough to send me up the walls.

The whole of last week I had to digest the new information, the new…demands of bureaucracy (I swear, bureaucracy is my new constant word these days) and quite frankly, that has gotten me down in the dumps. Half the time I found myself in denial, the other half of the time I spent hating on how difficult things are turning out right now. And at all times, C. has been nothing but so very kind and helpful, always optimistic and trying to make me see the issues in a different light. It wasn’t helping me at first, but he is constantly giving me hope until I am slowly starting to believe again, that everything will be alright soon.

And in those moments of hopeful thoughts, I channelled my energy to happier things. All my worries about how this new development is going to affect me – financially, mentally, physically – I repackaged them and sold it to myself in the form of a sabbatical. I have never really thought about it this way because I have always imagined that I would be able to jump right back to work once I settled my visa etc. Now that it isn’t all that simple, I have to buy the idea of a sabbatical. It’s not a terrible idea anyway. I can guess many might only be too happy to trade their places for mine. Not that I would let you, really, I’m quite happy here. But hey, it is making me feel a lot better. To acknowledge that I *am* on a sabbatical right now. I have all the time in the world now to do whatever I want, and I feel this is the best time for me to focus on ME.

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♦ To start with, I had a brainwave to revamp this blog. For reals. I acknowledge that in the past I haven’t been the most consistent blogger and this year I intend to change that. I want to be able to properly share my thoughts and improve my writings. And to do this, I will be starting off with a few new features that hopefully will stay regular. By making it regular, I hope it will keep me in check and disciplined enough to put more of me into this space that I call my own. I am looking forward to prettify this little corner on the internet (this is work in progress, some time in the week there should be some sort of visual changes), and tomorrow the first of my new feature will go live! So please hang around and check it out!

♦ Secondly, I am picking up French again! C. introduced Duolingo to me some weeks back and I must say, it is such a fun way to learn a new language! It is also free which is the best aha. However, procrastination is in my blood, I am not on top of it yet but apparently I am now at Level 6 and am 13% fluent in French! Merveilleux!

♦ I have been reading loads in the past few months – you can follow my reading challenge here on Goodreads. This year’s goal is to hit 25 books by the end of 2017. I seem to be doing pretty well, I have done 7 books out of 25! I have every intention to increase my goal but I am also setting myself monthly book goals on the side. I am supposed to finish 4 books in February but alas, only 1 book achieved this month. I will do my best to talk about the books I’ve read and yes, it will be one of those new features I was telling you about. C. is being an absolute delight, he wants to surprise me with a book each month and who am I to say no to that?

♦ It is a little disheartening that I haven’t ran / gone to the gym in ages. Every day I wake up telling myself today will be the day I start working out again. Never happened. I am still working up the motivation to make that first step – after months of slacking – so wish me luck!

So there you go, bits and pieces of my life thus far. Hopefully everything will fall into place soon and this whole new life I have been pursuing will then begin. There is always a time and place for everything. But until then, let me enjoy this freedom and time I have in abundance right now.

Toodles. ♥

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Christmas is just around the corner (less than a month!!!). I am happy to share that this year I get to celebrate Christmas properly, decorating a Christmas tree, exchanging gifts & all that jazz. I have been pulling on my hair trying to sort out gifts for loved ones because I am absolutely terrible when it comes to gifts. So this weekend, I have decided to compile a list – an ever-growing list – of what I would like for Christmas because it is rather fun to be thinking of nice and pretty things.

IF by any chance, you are a dear friend who is pulling your hair out to think of a gift for me, fear not. I am here to solve all your problems! *cackles*

If, however, you are a complete stranger who stumbled across this little list, then I hope this would help you instead.

 

The Christmas Wish List

1) I love books. Give me anything to do with books and I will love you forever, for sure. This Christmas, I have my eyes set for Christmas Days 12 Stories and 12 Feasts for 12 Days by Jeanette Winterson. I have every plan to read it this winter by the fire, with a cuppa hot chocolate. And the dog for company. £10.49

  • Not sure if you’re making the right book selection for friend/family? No worries! Get them some book vouchers! I’m sure they’ll be happy raiding their favourite bookstores the very next day!

 

Image from Penguin Books

2) Y’all know I pretend to be a domestic goddess most of the time. Encouraged by my wonderful boyfriend to continuously feed him until he grows fat, I find myself wanting a Recipe Organiser: Food Lover from kikki.k to store my all-time favourite recipes. Just so I wouldn’t have to trace my tracks online only to find my favourite recipes have been taken down, moved, etc. £24

Image from kikki.k

3) Winter is coming, if you haven’t already noticed. And the one thing that is missing from my life right now is a soft, cosy throw. I don’t know about you but I do like the option of walking around in the house with a throw around my shoulders while I carry my cuppa. Or sitting by the fireplace with the throw for extra warmth. It’s like a mini blanket. Like Linus’s security blanket. There is a lovely range of throws in Ikea that I would love to get my hands on. Affordable as well. Like Gurli Black-Blue throw for £5.50 or a Hermine throw for £12.

IKEA GURLI throw

Images from Ikea

 

4) I have never been an avid Ted Baker fan but while frantically gift searching for people in the last week, I came across lovely selections of wash bags & make up bags from Ted Baker. My favourites: Shella porcelain large wash bag £22.50; Arleen Bejewelled Shadows wash bag £22.50. There is even a classic textured leather wash bag option, Assfrid and it comes in black or pink £46.

Images from Ted Baker

5) Cute stationery. Who can say no to cute stationery? Those who hang around me long enough will know that I have a crazy obsession for cute stationery, and that there will never be too much stationery. Some ideas for you to ponder on: Stationery Kit: Pause Guld £21 from kikki.k (currently unavailable); Everyday Ballpoint Pen 3pk: Cute £6 from kikki.k; Christmas Stocking stickers £1.50 from Paperchase (how cute are these!!!)

 

Images from kikki.k

 

6) I am one of your big time wanderlusters so I’m almost always on the look out for travel opportunities. I chanced upon this gem while browsing pages & pages of Christmas goodies and thought it’d make a great gift for pretty much anyone! I am sure most people you know (or even yourself) travel loads. So why not let them conquer their world, one scratch at a time? Luckies Scratch Map Travel Edition £6.99 from John Lewis. Note that this is a mini version of the original travel scratch map.

Image from John Lewis

  

I hope you’ve enjoyed this mini wishlist, I also hope it might have given you some gift ideas for friends & family this Christmas.

It is also time to buy (& post) Christmas cards! Ooohhhh, the joys of picking out cards. And pretty wrapping paper!

Better get going before the sun sets on me without warning!

 

Have a happy Sunday, folks!

 

 

P.S. Some of the items’ prices stated on this post may have changed by the time you view the links. Do note that this post was written and published during the Black Friday weekend.

 

Toodles. ♥

Photo courtesy of Floridatix.com

I’ve been tagged! (Check out the competition here, just click!)

So I received a lovely email from the lovely PR of Attraction World, announcing the newly launched Floridatix.com website last week. I almost missed this email because it was found in my spam inbox instead! :O Good thing I was going through the spam as always (you never know what important things might have been accidentally sent there, like so!) and caught this email! Just in time! 😀

 

In the spirit of Christmas and magic and all that is jolly, I present to you the questions I have been tagged with:

 

1. Which Hogwarts house would you be sorted into?
So I’ve never really thought about this myself because I trust the Sorting Hat would do a better job; that said, I have been told by my friends that I am most likely to be sorted into Gryffindor. Not being biased or anything, honest. Although I am really not surprised if I end up in Hufflepuff.

2. Name a Disney character you’d like to have dinner with.
I would love love love to have dinner with the Mad Hatter. Just think of the madness that will ensue! The hilarity! Also, Winnie the Pooh. He would be an absolute darling. <3

3. Which Marvel superhero power would you choose?
This is pretty tough – I’m torn between the power to heal or to teleport. Maybe both, if I may be greedy! 😛

4. If you could bring back one dinosaur breed from Jurassic Park, which would it be?
T-REX RAWR! Just because. Small hands. LOL. No, I kid. I just think T-Rex is a definite classic.

5. You can ride a dragon at the Triwizard Tournament and visit the Owlery at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, but where else would you go on a school trip to Hogsmeade?
But of course! Honeydukes! Can you imagine all the chocolate and candies, because I definitely can! /drools. Also, The Three Broomsticks. Because, doh, Butterbeer. Need I say more? 😀

6. A scene in any Disney, Harry Potter or Marvel movie you wish you could experience?
I’m quite enthusiastic about Harry Potter at the moment – I would love to be a spectator watching the tasks of Triwizard Tournament! Most specifically where Harry battles the Hungarian Horntail!

7. Name one item from any Harry Potter, Disney or Marvel movie would you want for Christmas.
The wand. Definitely the wand. IT CAN DO WONDERS.

8. Name one unforgettable experience/moment you’ve had at the Orlando Parks. (if you haven’t been just tell us which park you’d like to go to!)
I’ve never been to any, but I would love to visit Universal Orlando! Because, DIAGON ALLEY.

 

I suppose it is rather obvious by now that I am a (huge) fan of Harry Potter. Lol.

 

Also, a little last minute but I’m tagging you girls, Jesse & Iris!

 

 

Toodles & have fun! ♥