Saturday, December 24, 2016

Remember the Reason for the Season


Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year Everyone!


Last December, Bob ( that's what my mom calls him eventhough I named him Marley ) dashed into our home without a second thought & since then, he has been a part of our family. It was my first experience adopting a cat. Needless to say, plenty of new experiences along the way!

I gave up lock downs coz the more I tried to stop him from galivanting ( more to protect him than anything ), the sleekier he became at escaping. After a while I just left the door & windows open. I told him " Go ahead. I'll give you back your freedom. After all, you were never mine in the first place. Know that you have a home to come back to, whenever. Just be safe! "

From then on, it was Christmas for him all the way. We used to worry like crazy.. And yet, now that he can do whatever he likes, there are days that he'd rather laze about at home instead. Not only that, at least now, that I've learned to leave him be, I am able to sleep better at night!

There were times he got lost on different floors of the apartment building ( smart enough to enter the lift but too short to press the button to go down or up ) but as times goes by, he became smarter, so the lift ended up becoming his hotel room ). He either gets the right floor at times, we have to go search for him if not, and sometimes, kind neighbours & apartment guards will escort him back to our unit.
He's quite the charmer! There, enough said


Christmas to me, has always been about love & the act of giving. I was introduced to the spirit of the season, years ago, when my uncle brought my mom, brother & I to live with him. He was my first Santa. He gave us gifts, beautiful lavish ones & yet, to me, his biggest gift was his heart. Home was no longer a place. It was family. Those were meaningful moments of my lifetime.

He died recently, on the 2nd of Dec. However, he didn't take Christmas with him. Why is that so? Because to me, for as long as I continue to remember his kindness & good deeds to not only my family but everyone else, Christmas will forever remain a huge part of my life. He showed me during his lifetime that Christmas does not have to be just for a season. It is how you live your life everyday & in memory of him, I shall strive to continue that tradition.


We have had bad days, really bad ones, he & I. Suffering alone or not being able to be there for the ones you love is tragic. May you be at peace now.

Speaking of Christmas, I am happy to share that the spirit of Christmas still lives on even for those that have converted to other religions or even from those that are not Christians. As of yesterday itself, my mom, son & I got to have a wonderful Christmas eve dinner thanks to a Muslim couple's generosity. May the blessings be.

So to those that thinks it "Haram", to wish anyone a Merry Christmas, do take a moment to think about our other non Muslim friends who for the love of God, never hesitates to wish us Selamat Hari Raya :)
Lets be the light that shines the soul & may we always have love in our hearts.

So, to all those of you who feels glum this Christmasy season, take heart. It was never about money & neither is it about anything glitzy..Look around. There is always someone in need of some cheering. Be generous in any way you can! You are not alone.





Thursday, August 18, 2016

Say Something Nice Campaign 2016 - Chef Leah With a Big Heart




Hello everyone! Please meet Chef Leah Choy. One of last year's recipient of the Young Changemakers Award 2015. 7 years young... with an old, wise & beautiful soul. She started a baking & painting business at the age of 4 1/2, to help raise money for her sister, Adele. Since then, Leah has earned at least RM29k for her sibling's recovery program/treatments in Philadelphia & has managed to even bake for the homeless over here.

Her innocent, fearless & can do spirit has brought her much love, support & success. She originally learnt how to bake, mostly through youtube. Her family, helps & guides her along the way.

I got a chance to speak to her for the 1st time over the phone today, early this morning. Needless to say, I felt like a proud parent. My maternal instinct took over automatically & she had an earful of advise & encouragement. She sounded so adult in her thinking & speech, she took me by suprise. How lovely! :)

She was heading off to Jakarta with her mom, Tay Mei Yean today. Since I am not able to meet her at the airport early this morning, I wanted to thank her personally for baking me such adorable & most thoughtful cupcakes. I had ordered it at the very last minute & yet she was able to accommodate my request. I am truly amazed. As this was going to be her first journey & flight with MH, she was pretty excited & so were we. ( the ones who knew about it ). I do hope she enjoyed her journey with us!

Speaking of cupcakes, if you know me well enough, you'll know that I can never resist 'em! I have many fond memories of having cupcakes with my closest & dearest girlfriends, Daphne & Leela in particular. We used to have such cravings for them! I even had a childhood friend, Wan Nor Hasny, who baked & sent to me, early this year, the most yummilicious homemade Red Velvet Cupcakes that I have ever tasted! ( The 1 year wait was worth every single bite, babes.. hehe! )

Eversince then, I have yet to have my cupcake fix, therefore, I am so looking forward & can't wait to sink my teeth into them gorgeous cutie pies again & savour those lovely little sinful bites of pleasure! ( but of course I'll share some with the rest of my operating crew members lah.. It is especially meaningful to me because Leah made it & I am super touched by her efforts! Lets see who will be the lucky ones working with me today :)

You can find out more about passionate Leah & that big heart of hers through her FB page @ Chef Leah With A Big Heart. Please do go, share & like it. Follow her progress & get inspired in the process! Do also consider ordering from her someday. She bakes other stuff too & paints art to sell. All these, so that she can help her family, fund her younger sister Adele's treatments in the US. May our paths cross again & hopefully, I'll be able to meet up with her & the family one of these days. In the meantime, keep flying high Leah :)

Do visit Leah at the opening ( 25th Aug ) & closing ceremony ( 24th Sept ) of the Say Something Nice Campaign by Anas Zubedy. ( You can check their Many Colors One Race FB & Instagram pages for more info ) She & their team, will be baking & selling her cupcakes as well as other things for the ones present. ( pay as you like ). The proceeds will all go to Adele's fund. What better way to be a part of something bigger than ourselves..Thanking all of you in advance!

Selamat Hari Merdeka & Hari Malaysia 2016 my fellow Malaysians! May we continue to be human first :)


 LEAH, ADELE & MEI YEAN with their kind advocate LEIA from Philly :)

This morning's gift for us from Leah ( we ordered those ) & some of the front end MH team that have made an effort to ensure Leah & mom will have a safe as well as a memorable flight with us. I wouldn't have known about Leah & family had it not been for Captan Afif ( seated ) in the first place. Thanks to him, MH & the rest of us had the opportunity to give something nice back!

Jangan lupa datang and meet one of our youngest Unity agents this 25th! Lets keep her spirit going & her heart full of love for always.....

I was so excited to see my cupcakes & so syiok eating it, that I forgot to open the note that was attached together with my order earlier. Work had also kept me busy. ( Oh ya! Thanks Leah, for including the buttercream toppings especially for me. Loved it much! My girlfriends also said, that they would never have guessed that a 7 year old had baked it all. Memang sedap & cantik giler! So anyway, before I forget again, back to the surprise note - Leah & Adele both finger painted this according to their mother when I thanked them. What a wonderful way to end a beautiful day indeed! I am truly humbled. Thank you girls..God Bless

p/s ~ Thanks to everyone who funded Adele through Leah, for the #belanjasomethingnice# cupcakes. Kudos to Anas & all you Zubedyans too for caring. Good job guys & may y'all have a meaningful event!

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Have Courage And Be Kind :)



Everyone strives to be better in everything they do. The goals we set daily reflect our passion and overall ambition, just like the career decisions we make. A job is never a job. The chain effect of our happiness at work affects us and everyone around us.

We all have our own internal switch that turns us on. What motivates us to work towards being a better person, having a better career or living a better life, depends largely on what satisfies our current internal hunger. It is the soul that needs to be fed the most.

We, as human beings are capable of many wonderful things. Even the weakest of us all, and the least likely able to give, can do little things with great love. Courage gives birth to kindness & love springs forth from wisdom. 

So lets be nice to others for no reason. A day might come, that we'll need someone to be nice to us, without a reason. As long as each & everyone of us care enough, many of the world's greatest tragedy can finally remain as history. 


So, what's it like being a Stewardess? It must be cool eh..flying the world, meeting people, wearing that uniform...
Hmm..definitely! I truly love what I do :)
"With great power comes great responsibilty"..was that from Spiderman the movie?? I forgot. Anyway, I totally agree. Nothing good comes easy! Besides, we all have our own strengths & weaknesses, pros & cons. However, I am not here today to talk about my life as a cabin crew. We have all heard enough of that.

After 20 years of living in and out of a suitcase, for me & to me, the only difference a day makes, is what a difference I can make out of that day. Speaking of which, it gives me great pleasure to share a recent compliment, written by one of our passengers onboard my MH flight to Auckland. I am deeply touched and truly humbled by his generosity & willingness to take the time to make a difference in my life. He didn't have to write a formal letter neither did he have to thank me or my colleagues, and yet, he chose to. He reminded me of what being kind means.

Later on, when my Purser got a chance to read it, he made sure I got my name spelled right with a J instead of a Y. When I said, "It is not a big deal. It doesn't matter. What's important is that, SOMEONE has made my day!" Hurriedly he replied "We have to get it right. You deserve the recognition." And just like that, I felt appreciated. He didn't have to, but he cared enough to and that says a lot about that man.


It is really not that difficult to care or be nice. What we need to do, is to be brave & be kind. There will be days when we'll be on a down low. Days when everything is so slow & nothing seems to go our way. People expect us to smile but all we want to do, is cry. On days like these, it takes courage to pull ourselves through, effort to put ourselves together, to care enough about others when no one else seems to want to care about us at all.


You want something? Go get it. It is after all out there for the taking. Only the brave understands what it means. In order to get what we want, we have to first learn how to extend our hands, before others are able to reciprocate. Therefore, stop wasting time. Enough with the waiting game. There is plenty to be done!


Hence, that is why & how www.getafriday.com started. Since then, together with my other Fridays from all walks of life, we have done quite a number of chores for family, friends & strangers alike. From keeping homes clean, decluttering spaces, taking care of pets & entertaining children, nothing seems impossible. We have also shopped for some, delivered for others, repaired what's broken & shared what we are good at.

It is amazing what ONE can do when ONE care enough. If I hadn't started this more than a year ago, we would not have been able to pass our Thank God For Fridays Fund ( for the poor & underprivileged ) to some Orang Asli kids last June. All it took was the kindness of individuals & their willingness to work hand in hand to make this dream of ours possible.


Good stories are worth sharing. Here's an example below. Thanks to a few of Getafriday's clients, that had hired us to feed the homeless, my family & I were given the opportunity to do some charity work during the month of Ramadhan. It certainly gave me great pleasure, especially when I got to witness my little boy being brave & kind to others, less fortunate than him. Having my mom with us, completes the feel good cycle!


As Raya approached, I decided at the very last minute to go one step further & together with the help of a few kind hearted souls, ( bless them for their beautiful spirits ) we managed to bring some much needed cheer into a single mom's home. Thanks to her grace in receiving, she became the better giver :)


So, which is better? Flying or Friday-ing? I would say both! Can't live without the other. One lifts me up higher, the other, keeps me grounded :) 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

To give is to receive

I couldn't be with the one I love today, so I decided to love the ones I am with. Feeling miserable would do me no good, so instead, I choose to shower others with happiness. First off, I shared with some kindred spirits my intention this morning of distributing some yummylicious pineapple tarts for the homeless and underprivileged. I have a soft spot for them. My family and I have had to lose our homes a few times while I was growing up and many a wonderful soul have not only open their hearts but homes to us along the way. I know what it feels like to not have a sense of belonging nor a home to call my own.


Within a short period of time, all the tarts that have been prepared were snapped up by my friends for it. I then went ahead walking the streets of KL to make a difference in someone else's day today.


What a pleasant surprise to have met Philomena, a fellow Friday of mine from www.getafriday.com and a colleague that I have worked with as a Caregiver for MH 370 a few years ago. Today, is the first time we saw each other face to face since the disaster. Philo bumped into me and offered to join me in my mission to spread some joy today, so I accepted her help. Oh..what a breeze it was! With her kind assistance I did not feel the heat of the day nor the weight of the tarts. Even walking about from one corner to the next looking for people to hand the desserts to, became a fun activity. Philo was a joy to spend time with and I am glad I got the opportunity to spend today with her doing something good.

As happy as I am handing the stuff over for the deprived to eat, there was a part of me that felt a deep sense of sadness. How tragic it is to be in their shoes and yet there is nothing much I can do about it. Giving today makes me feel good but what happens to them tomorrow or day after? Will there be anyone else who cares? I know there are plenty but still not enough. If it was, you won't see people sleeping on the streets. I feel too deeply and it can be really exhausting.

At one stage, I burst out crying today. The smile I saw on a blind couple's face when I gave them a container of the tarts were priceless! The song they were singing brought tears to my eyes. It is called " Doa buat kekasih ". To see them having nothing except being happy with each other and yet are able to make our world a better place to live in just by singing, made me feel so poor. It is I who benefitted from their heartfelt rendition of that song and it is they who showed me what unconditional love is all about.

Another blind lady whom I approached and passed a jam tart to, actually stopped me halfway through my tracks as I was leaving and said, " adik, kakak belum bayar lagi untuk kuih ni. Jap ye ". I had to tell her that it is free. One Chinese forlorn looking man was so stumped by my gesture, tears rolled down his eyes. He wasn't even begging. I had to walk away to avoid embarrassing him. Some others called us from afar and asked for it. A few said no thank you. I don't really know why. I am now at home nursing a huge major headache. I am not sure from what. I am truly grateful to the ones that have made it possible for me to do what I did today. I managed to finish what I started. May I continue to find purpose and satisfaction in all the things I do.

" The only gift I have to give is the ability to receive. If giving is a gift, and it surely is, then my gift to you is to allow you to give to me."


Thank you everyone for making my day worthwhile...

Thursday, January 7, 2016

www.getafriday.com

http://www.getafriday.com/

The above is the link to my website. Yes, I am a business owner too now. I started this last June 2015. I went off to SSM KL Sentral first thing in the morning on the 1st of June to register my company. It was a spur of the moment decision due to my stress level going off track when MH decided to pull the plug on us. I didn't bother to wait for my offer or termination letter that day, as it was too nerve wrecking. I decided to do something useful instead, hence the birth of GetaFriday.

I have been learning new things eversince. It has been pretty daunting. From wanting to vomit blood at times, to feeling a sense of fulfilment for being able to help others earn some extra income as well as get their chores done with minimum fuss. My biggest focus at present is to gain the public's trust. Be it the clients as well as the Fridays. "Friday" is a name that I have given to the folks that help me perform tasks for my clients. The name was inspired by the book Robinson Crusoe. Business have been pretty slow. Not many knows it exists. The ones that do are either sceptical about it or fully supports my dream. Neither do they know that I am the founder. Of course I have had help. I couldn't have started it without my IT friends and fellow dreamers. If they are the brains, our Fridays are the heart of our operations. Without any of them, this idealistic dream of mine could not have come true.

Come true it did. Not fast enough for my liking though. I am not used to rejections of the business sort or the manipulations of the business world. Neither am I ok with the wishy washy attitude of the people/organizations I meet to request for a grant or guidance. I started this off with Zero capital. It has been an uphill battle all the way. Lucky I enjoy climbing mountains! There are days when I feel like giving up and yet when I think of the good that comes from it and the intention behind GetaFriday, it spurs me on.

Currently, most of my Fridays are either ex cabin crew or current ones. We have a few students and some retirees. I would like to see our family grow. It is a means for us to supplement our income as well as spend the extra time we have, to help the community and be of use to society. From baby sitting, pet sitting, walking the dogs, home sitting, being a temp for others, right up to delivery of fragile and expensive items from one country to the next have been succesfully executed by us.

I do realize and am aware of the many choices that are out there, all wanting a portion of the cake. I do welcome the competition and I wish them all well. It can only get better. It keeps me on my toes and forces me to be more resilient. It also pushes me to adapt, change and go on with the times. What matters most to me is to be of help to others and as long as we can accomplish that, half the battle has been won. Rezeki ada di mana mana, yang penting ...kita usaha! :) http://www.getafriday.com/


Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Walk of Friendship with David Wu


It has been more than a year since I last blogged. Today, I felt the need to share with you the story of an ordinary man's journey. One that I have had the pleasure to experience as well as indulge in. 

It all started with a man named David. Surname, Wu. The guy who kick started Projek Wumah. By now, if you are someone that keeps tabs on whose who, Mr Wu-Man is definitely someone not to be missed from your list of people who makes a difference. A true Malaysian at heart.

 A stranger I met by chance through a mutual FB group that has now, not only earned my respect but is like family to me. What made him stand out in my eyes from the start was his giving and caring nature. He helps people without expecting anything in return. I would know, for I was one of them. In fact thanks to him and his brilliant idea of recommending his friends and strangers alike, to order the pineapple jam tarts that I started selling online during the recent fasting month for the folks of Kampung Kubang Gabus, boost my sale tenfold. At that moment in time, I have not even met him! A single act of kindness that made a difference to my existence. Not only did I manage to earn a decent amount of money, I also had a chance to be of use to society and had an opportunity to do some good. It was only much later before we got to say hi face to face. By then, it was like meeting an old friend. Happy to note, that jam tarts and our passion for the less fortunate brought us together. 


Last Sept 9th, David started walking by the streets of Malaysia ( from Merdeka Square, KL heading towards Kampung Kubang Gabus, Kelantan ) with an intent to foster relationships amongst us Malaysians as well as to create an awareness to raise funds for Projek Wumah. You can check out either his own FB page or the Projek Wumah page for the latest information on his whereabouts. Last I heard, he has reached Kelantan and is dreading another uphill climb a few hours ago. I have personally decided to write this blog as an ode to him. 


I wouldn't have been able to join him on the second day of the walk had it not been for his good friend Mujahidin Zulkiffli. With Din's help, I got to hitch a ride to where David was. It was a spur of the moment decision and since I was off, I thought why not? Lets just wu it! Wu it we did. From Batu Caves towards Hulu Yam. Beautiful scenery along the way. Something I would not have been able to experience otherwise. Met some Malaysians along the way and was inspired to say hello. The t-shirt boosted my confidence.
We even gave some of it away in good faith. On that day, Din and I had to leave him a quarter of the way as there was an important meeting to be attended to in KL. I have to admit that I had wished to be able to walk farther with him. Tak puas :)


My chance came once again on the 9th day (17/09/2015). This time around, he was already in Raub getting ready for Malaysia Day. My good friend Vasukee, my son Ryan and I arrived at our hotel around 2300 that night. He came down to the lobby with a limp and a face that has seen many lonely and winding roads all within the last few days, gave me a hug, welcomed us and went up to sleep. We on the other hand went to have supper next door. A lovely tom yam dish, with rice, kai lan, salted fish and fried eggs. Yummeh!


The next morning, we had a hearty breakfast together with our family and friends. Shah, the back up driver joined us halfway through.
It was raining then. So we waited for it to stop. The good thing was, it cleared the haze. Thank God! Lovely start to the day.
We were met by two ladies just as we were about to leave. Pearly and Felicia. It was our first time meeting them. Nice to have had company. David gave us a short and simple briefing right before heading off for our walk. 


As always, it is fun when you get to do meaningful activities with your loved ones. Ryan enjoyed himself tremendously especially when he gets to sit in the vehicle with Shah after walking for a while. They went on a jalan jalan cari makan trip while we, continued to walk in the scorching hot sun and cooling rain. We stopped for breaks along the way. Drank and ate to keep our energies up. I also had my first taste of Rambutan Jam. People were curious. Some asked what are we up to, some shied away stealing glances when they think we are not looking. Midway through our journey, a car drove close by and halted infront of David. It stopped all of us on our tracks. Worried and curious all at the same time. A couple then came out with a huge grin on their faces, introduced themselves to David as Siti Kasim's friends and handed him 6 packets of coconut water. It was Godsend. Halleluyah! Alhamdulillah! Praise The Lord! It was such a sweet gesture, it made me feel so loved. I can now imagine how such little acts of kindness will mean so much to David, along this solo journey of his. None of this would have been experienced nor any of us can do what we did had it not been for David's pure determination and selflessness. It has inspired a nation. Me, personally. I am also glad to have been able to include my son for this walk. As we left David that evening at Kilometre 21 to head home to KL, while he continued walking forward and onwards, my heart and most sincere respect goes to him for doing what others could have done and yet did not want to or were not able to..Godspeed David.


Thank you for making our world a much better place to live in :)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Paint your gift of love this Christmas with Poesy Liang




It's the season to be jolly!

I can't say enough how much Christmas reminds me of love, friendship & family. December also reminds me of birthdays ( my mom & brother's ) & happy holidays..I used to joke with family and friends alike that it is always the month that I will end up spending the most, buying gifts & splurging on holidays for my loved ones.

This year, my girlfriend Poesy gave me a wonderful gift of love this Christmas. A private lesson & a little sneak peak into her world of arts. It was a joy seeing her in action and at the same time sitting next to her in the gallery, creating my very own interpretation of art. She has just started a new exhibition & came up with this brilliant idea recently on providing a one off mentorship program for anyone who is interested to learn something new as well as an opportunity to come up with a meaningful & unique gift from the heart. Here in lies another creative way to say thank you, I love you and that I think of you often. Spend a few hours with Poesy & let your imagination flow. Trust me, you won't regret this investment. In fact, you'll have a jolly good time!




You may contact her at the number below to book your own appointment for either a view of her many beautiful works of art or for the one off mentorship program. Poesy is aware that not everyone is able to afford her paintings hence that is why she has decided on this lovely idea of guiding us step by step, to create our very own little miracles. If you can spare 3 hours or so of your time for this, I assure you that you'll leave with not only the end product but also a higher dose of self confidence & awareness not to mention, a healthy appetite of wanting to be more inspired from within. If I may say so myself, it can really be addictive.



So please, do contact Poesy Liang at the number above or leave her a message if you'd like to see her in action as well as check out her creations. Plenty of stuff to admire. She'll give you a personal tour and explain the story behind each of her paintings. On the other hand, the one off mentorship program costs only RM 500. It comes with a set of utensils that you will be able to bring home with you for future creations.

I went off to visit her one evening with a vision of love in mind. I was in the mood to create something adorable for Christmas & so we agreed on the Gingerbread couple. It was a spur of the moment decision, one that I am always known for. A little bit anxious at the beginning but I got into the groove once my heart & mind took me away.




So, I first started with a sketch, then I chose my colour scheme & theme..Slowly but surely, it started to take shape. Along the way, like a dutiful student, I will walk up to my teacher & ask for pointers.



There are times when I'd freak out & she'd smile. My mistakes on the canvas were no big deal to her. In a second, she taught me how to rectify it. It was a combination of nerve's wrecking & moments of being enlightened! In short, amazingly fun!




While I was busy concentrating away, she continued with her work. Multi tasking in between whenever I needed a helping hand. She kept on reminding me to drink & have a bite at her chocolate cake but I was so engrossed at what I was doing that I didn't even feel hungry or thirsty. Now I understand how artists feel when they are in the zone. It is like getting your hands on an interesting book that you can't afford to put down, not until you have read all the way till the end. She is indeed blessed with many delightful talents!



That few hours together, working on our own piece, made me feel truly connected with her. It was very kind of her to have included me in her world. I really got to enjoy myself much. Time went by so fast that I was a little bit sad when we had to call it a night.

The painting below is my favourite of her Cupcake Cat Series. You might have a different favourite. Do come visit & see for yourselves.



Poesy's strength lies in her steady strokes & lines. You can see it especially on the Rooftop Cat Series. It took her years to be good at what she does. How lovely it is to have the know how & capabilities of creating beauty out of nothing at all.



I used a Sharpie instead of a brush for the outlines as I was afraid of messing it further. Even then it took some effort to have a steady hand. No wonder art does not come cheap! It really is a labor of love.



The RM 500 art mentorship comes with these useful items. She'll provide you with a 1 feet square canvas board, 24 colours, 15 brushes & a palette. Below is the colour wheel included for your future reference too.




I am glad I jumped at the idea of wanting to do this. My fingers are itching to paint something new now. It is amazing how theraupeutic I felt brushing the strokes onto the canvas. Best of all, it is the company and the people that I am surrounded by that makes me feel like I am on top of the world & that I am capable of far more than I give myself credit for.

Thank you Poesy for caring & sharing your passion with me. May you continue to shower us with your blessings ♥


Merry Christmas Everyone & A Happy New Year! It has indeed been a wonderful December for me so far. Looking forward to many more pleasant days ahead.


Oh! By the way, that's Harry Putter, her pet cat ( I adore that little fellow ) with Kelly Siew, one of Poesy's close friend. Kelly chose to paint her passion for music as a Christmas gift to herself this year. How apt! Love the colours..


Poesy's a natural born teacher. She has the skill, dedication and plenty of heart in ensuring that others are left enriched by her presence. Before I sign off, here's a lovely picture of Ryan sketching a giraffe while she gently encourages him on. I am a happy mummy. Praise the Lord for our very own Living Angels :)