Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lucky week


Busy busy little fun bee! Rollerblading how fun! I think that is a great idea to get some fresh air and exercise. However, I didn't realise how great it would be for socialising! I hope you have plenty more adventures zooming around the parks in London.

I really love your drawing of the bird, its beautiful and I love the colours and your pencil work! =)

It looks like you are on a flying start to following through your goals so far. I believe that if you are able to rollerblade and draw every day, you will be able to obtain that balance that you were blogging about earlier.

Geez, to draw an hour a day will be therapeutic I say!

I have found happiness in ensuring I have a little bit of creativity every day. Ookiedoba as been wonderful company for when I am sick or just passing time between chores on the weekend, or before sleep. I am no pro, but I find that listening to the cute happy tunes that sing out of my uke, makes me simply happy; a child-like happiness, and I definitely think I need to keep it in my life to keep me being me when things get too serious.

I felt even more validated when I came across Jake Shimabukuro, a famous ukulele musician and found that his philosophy was:

"The ukulele is the instrument of peace - and if everyone played the ukulele, the world would be a better place."

This made me smile! SMILE SMILE SMILE because I already knew that, and it just made me feel even more right about loving the ukulele.

Other than my ramblings, things have been quite slow this week.

On Wednesday night I went to volleyball, and Els came to me with a square box wrapped in white. It was a belated Christmas present, which she had been meaning to give to me! When I opened it, I was delighted to see a cute fuchsia coloured piggy bank! I actually already got one from Kev about 2 years ago, in a pink colour, but I figured that I can always save more!

My cute pigs helping me save! Thanks Els!
Lucky tally = 1

Besides volleyball, I haven't done any other exercise, so I have started to feel gross. I definitely felt squishier around my belly which made me sad.

However, yesterday morning when I stepped on the scales expecting to have gained weight from my inactivity, to my surprise this was not so. In fact, I had dropped a kilo since the last time I weighed myself! Weeee!  

Lucky tally = 2

Then yesterday after work, when I got home I found a package on my desk addressed to me, sent from the UK! When I opened it, I was surprised with beautiful gifts from Petra!

Totally loving the necklace and book mark! Thanks Chia!
I felt loved! And I admittedly sniffed the bookmark to see if I could catch a whiff any lingering smells of Jordan. Unfortunately, I only smelt cardboard box. 

Lucky Tally = 3

And today, I was supposed to go play indoor soccer this afternoon, but due to some mix ups, I was unable to go... however, Kev came by my place surprised me with a new friend:

Meet Gerry The Giraffe! =)

Lucky tally = 4

This is only the beginning of the weekend, so it is definitely off to a great start!

Keep us posted about your drawing and rollerblading adventures! Also about any skateboarding experiences!

Rollerblading madness

Hi Anna

I have decided that in the next two weeks of school holidays that I will be spending all of it in London rather than travelling around Europe and this is perfect right now because it gives me the chance to attend to my NY resolutions! One of them was to draw more. Second was more of a bucket list- to try skateboarding. Now the second one hasn't happened just yet, and I've replaced it with rollerblading.

I had my heart set on blading when I woke up this morning and I had a blast blading in Hyde Park this afternoon! I only fell once because I was going down a small slope and didn't realise that it was going to pick up speed so quickly ( didn't do too well in physics!) Apart from that no falls :) I was grinning away having so much fun whizzing around. I couldn't help but reminiscence  blading around as a kid along the corridor of HW's flat back on Christmas Island. I have HW to thank forever for lending me her blades all those years ago and giving me the time of my life today :) Memory is deeply embedded I tell you :)
I shall call them my hot pink rollerbabies!
I was at the park for four hours believe it or not! The weather was beautiful and I met a small group of bladers/skaters. I bladed past this lady doing some fancy tricks on her blades and she smiled at me. On the way back I stopped and started talking to her and turns out Bonnie is a 58 year old retired lawyer originally from Singapore but lived in London since 1985 and spends most of her time practising in the park. She introduced me to a few others and I was awed at the background of all the bladers I met. I had the typical rebellious skater boy/ girl stereotype in mind but none of them were like that. I can't wait to blade around and meet a few more people. Apparently on the weekends, you get up to 40 or so! So long I don't go breaking any bones, I really think this could be my thing!!!
Tired and taking blades off to go home :)
This is one of the guys doing free style skating weaving in and out of the cones or what they call slaloming. I have never seen anything like it and next time I might give it a go if I'm brave enough and there is someone to help me.
 Ahh so they have been filmed on Check out this link.
I would LOVE to be able to do something like that! Can you guess what my goal might be?

Now what is really cool is that I bought my blades from a skate shop near Hyde Park and the "man" (I'm sure he's only 18!)  who served me offered to give me a go at skateboarding this Sunday. He said that skateboarding is a lot harder than rollerblading which is why I didn't invest in one, but I don't really mind as long as I step on that board and get my balance! I imagine it similar to surfing and it's probably nothing like it, but I think the feeling of moving and getting my balance would be exhilarating!  Woo.. I feel productive already. Something to tick of the list!

I'm relieved I'm getting back into drawing again. These are the two sketches I've done. One from yesterday and one today. I love using coloured pencils and layering the colours with precision. I find it relaxing drawing nature and capturing all the colours and if you look closely, you might notice that I never use black.

The flowers are drawn from the indoor plant I bought and the bird is a random picture I found on the internet. It makes me feel great when people like my drawings. I am a real perfectionist when it comes to my own work and I can look at it and criticize it endlessly. I'm surprised and happy when people tell me otherwise. My rule is to keep the sketching one hour max. I've done a huge project before and it's still unfinished back at home and I don't think I'll ever finish it off. By the end of the holidays I hope to have a neat collection of sketches to show my achievement!

My routine for the next two weeks will involve a morning hour sketch session and after lunch, followed by 2-3 hours of blading in Hyde Park. Currently I'm all sunned and bladed out but I can't wait until tomorrow!!! I felt like one of those 'cool'  people to have my blades hanging on my bag while I was commuting on the tube during peak hour. Forget briefcases when you have blades!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A fine balance

Hi Anna

Welll I haven't been working at all this week. Reminds me why I dislike supply work so much. Anyway I know I should embrace the freedom but I think that work and teaching is really important to me and without it I feel a tad lost and miserable!

Pene has been dealing with all my moans and groans too and she was kind enough to meet up at Hampstead today during her lunch break. It felt odd to be back there again and walking past my old flat. I looked up and the windows were open. Some lucky person is living in there now :( We bought lunch from a local cafe and walked to the edge of the heath and sat basking in the sun. Today is the warmest it has been! A whole 22C! Almost as warm as it will be soon in Perth according to the forecast temperatures. Would've posted a pic of us but the pics I took were TERRIBLE! Sorry Pene you looked gorgeous though :P

Love Pene's cowboy boots!
Anyway, I read somewhere that in order for a person to be content with daily life, a combination of physical/ creative/ educational/ social/ work/ imaginative/ spiritual activity. I think my balance is all over the place in particular the physical and creative activity. Today onwards I am going to make sure if I am not working, I will try and do a bit of all of them.  After talking to Pene, I thought that it was time I did something about the physical part and so after I got home, I decided to join the gym. The gym is a small family operated one that I googled online. It is rather near to Notting Hill and I caught the bus there but because there was plenty of sun and I was in no hurry to get home, I decided to walk home when I finished up. There is a gradual change of nice area to not-so-nice during the half hour walk. It felt fantastic to sweat it all out on cardio. No idea about the weights and all the other equipment. I would much rather be outdoors when it's sunny but I really like running on the treadmill because it is consistent and no cars/dogs/people to dodge and there is definitely no excuse for not exercising when it is cloudy/ rainy now.

I also created my own muffin recipe. Banana, pecans and dessicated coconut muffins.That was my creative activity for yesterday :) I am so addicted to the smell and taste of coconut!

I've just decided that if I don't have work tomorrow, I am going to buy a pair of rollerblades and be a master of the wheels! I haven't done it in ages and I hope to be practicing this summer until I am an expert and zipping around without any broken bones I hope! There is even a rollerblading club at a few parks! I can't wait to join... sounds a lot more fun than a running club. After hearing you and Mr D play the ukelele I feel like I need to master something. Keep you posted on this!

Monday, March 26, 2012


Hi Anna

I don't know what triggered it but I woke up this morning at about 3am. I was panicked and sweating. I had a terrible nightmare and it was really disturbing and it made me feel sick and  scared to go back to sleep. I can't quite remember details of it now but I remember waking up thinking who could I talk to?

Having a lack of sleep affected me throughout the day. I should've gone out but I had a lazy Sunday and I spent the day baking berry muffins and crackers. It was also my turn to clean the house and I spent most of the morning hoovering and getting a real good work out from it too! There is so much dust in the area.

 In the afternoon I went for a jog to the nearest park and it was slightly uncomfortable because I stood out from miles away. I was incredibly disappointed because there was rubbish everywhere from picnickers not bothering to put it in the in. It makes me sad and it made me even sadder that I'm not living near Hampstead Heath. I miss it there so much :( I just have to think of the positives, like the cheaper groceries and a bigger room and a house with a backyard.

Thank goodness for your blog post. I was waiting eagerly for it and it made me smile. I LOVE the whole idea! How creative! Wish I came up with something like that. Your design is gorgeous too Anna! It's got this sweet vintage look and ten times better than Cath Kidston! I love the birds on it, they certainly symbolise travels and freedom to me. I think it's the sweetest what Kev has been doing for you. Forgive me but what does Mr P.O.P stand for?  Although he should wait for you to read my blog before he does. Just kidding!

I also loved looking through their FB page. I think we should start a FB fan page! What do you think?

I tried sketching from the top of my head to get my creativity going but for 15 minutes I just wasn't feeling it and had no patience and too heavy with my pencil strokes.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

More pretty things! NATA.ArtRoom

Hi hi Chia!

The photos of your trip to Brighton looks like something out of the movies or tv! Especially the pier part!

I had been sleeping in this morning, as I have been sick for the past few days. When I eventually woke up, Kev told me that you had blogged. I was surprised and outraged that he had read it before I had! =P

I really like your photo of the lobster-prawn-crayfish? It's so funny! For some reason it reminds me of Homer from the Simpsons and his pet lobster that he ends up eating up! =D

Shopping YAY! You look gorgeous in your profile photo and in your half-length mirror shot. Classic, timeless- Love it!

And, your plants and candles! I am loving how you are making yourself a home. It's making me want to have a place of my own to love and to make it mine. I hope you do get a venus fly-trap! I've always wanted one! They look so cool, and I think you will have a lot of fun with them!


You may be looking at my title and asking what is 'NATA.ArtRoom". Well, on Saturday I went to this workshop in napkin art! Napkin art? YES! Napkin art!

I saw Tracy and Alison's napkin art in the city during lunch time, and then later on when I was walking to the train station on my way home. I was attracted by their 'vintage looking' bags that they had for sale. Each one was beautiful and was different from the other. Tracy and Alison was super friendly, and super approachable. They explained to me that the patterns on the bags were all made from napkins, and that if I wanted to, I can tell them what I like and they can make it for me, or, I can come to one of their workshops and make my own.

Given that the night before, I was browsing through all the Cath Kidson stuff on the web (obviously influenced by your earlier post), I was super excited and really really keen on doing something different. Doing something not sport/exercise based. I have been so busy trying to get fit, and balancing it with work and family/friends, that I had not written, drawn or read a good book in a long time. I had not used my creative part of my brain and I started feeling a little 'grey'.

So, even though I was unable to drive on Friday or Saturday because I was dizzy, and nauseous from the flu, I went to Tracy and Alison's place to do the workshop. I figured that since I shouldn't be doing anything strenuous, doing some arts and crafts indoors was the perfect thing to keep me distracted from feeling like crap.

Kev was such a hero this weekend. He was patient with my whining and my genuine (and at times, exaggerated) moans of discomfort, and he drove me everywhere this weekend, which included driving me all the way to the otherside of Perth to attend the NATA.Artroom workshop.

Mr P.O.P being a hero! =D

During the workshop I was a little flustered because I just felt dizzy a lot of the time, and concentrating and looking at something for a long time made it worse. However, it was still super fun. I decided that I wanted to make a beauty bag, because the bag that you had gave me broke. So I was given a plain canvas bag to work with and I was let loose to choose from all the lovely napkins that Tracy and Alison had collected from their travels.

The napkin wheel and the napkin bits and pieces that I chose

They had a napkin wheel and folders and folders of napkins. I was amazed at how pretty some napkins could be. I can no longer dismiss a pretty looking napkin as merely something that I would wipe my food left overs, or a dirty table, as they are inspirations and tools for art!

I had planned to make a 'travel' inspired side and then a 'pretty' side to my beauty bag. So I was selecting things that reminded me of my travels, and pretty things like leaves, birds, butterflies, flowers etc.

Tracy and Alison had taken photos throughout the day, and had uploaded them onto Facebook. They said that I was able to take the photos off their page and use it on my blog! =) So I have used some of the photos in this post.

Working away

My work space while working on my travel design

I wanted to go for the 'well traveled' look: an adventure where the experience is the reward.

After finishing my design I took a photo of it so that I could remember how to arrange it.

My travel design

Tracy then showed me how to use the napkin glue in order to place the cut outs onto the bag, and to have them 'melt' into the fabric.

I felt like a child. I was so ungraceful with my brush and glue. I tried hard to be patient and only use a small amount of glue onto the brush. But as time went by, I started adding more glue to my brush. It didn't wreck the design, however it did make the edges of my napkin cut outs break away.

Tracy patiently showing me how to 'melt' the napkin into the fabric

A work in progress

After I finished one side, I started working on the 'pretty' design. By this time, I was really struggling with my flu. I was hot, flustered, and it took forever to come to an arrangement that I was happy about. However, I eventually came up with this:

Pretty and delicate
I think birds and butterflies still tie in well with the travel theme, because they get to see the world in a way that we will never see it. They get to fly and be free! =)

Work in progress

After gluing the napkin pieces, we dabbed our bags with a damp cloth to remove the excess glue, and then we brushed on a 'finishing' glue to set the napkins and to make the bag waterproof. We then finished it off with ironing the bags (using a towel to separate the bag from the direct heat of the iron).

Just when I thought that was the end of it, Tracy and Alison took photos of my finished product and gave me a Polaroid photo of it with a sample of one of the napkins that I had chosen stuck to it. They said that it is a little souvenir to remind me, and to prove to others that the design of my bag came from a napkin.

Me and my finished product!

My bag with the little Polaroid attached

The luck of birds and butterflies

An Adventure where the journey is the reward
It took a little over 4 hours to finish my bag, and I was shocked at how fast time had flown by! I had intended to come in to make a few items, but I ended up only making one! Kev had returned to pick me up at 4pm, but I didn't believe it was 4pm, and I never checked the windows to see him waiting outside! Sorrrrryyy Kev!

I love my bag! I love love love it! I can't stop looking at it, and being super proud that it was designed and made by me! I definitely will be coming back for another workshop another day!

If you would like to find out more about NATA.ArtRoom you can find them on facebook at this link.

Pretty things in life

Hi Anna

Love the flowers!! Ahh well this blog is all about pretty things in my life right now.

We have been very fortunate that the weather is warming up and continuous days of sunshine. On Friday I decided to take the day off for a day trip to Brighton. Brighton is the best it gets when it comes to the beach. It was a one hour train ride away and it was a day well spent.

Here are some pictures to give you an idea of how the seaside is like here. No soft sand, warm waters or greenery to be seen or even the chance of getting sun burnt. I was happy to just lie on the rocks and bathe in the sunshine. I actually liked the idea of the rocks  because it was very clean and you don't have the problem of getting sand everywhere.

Postcard perfect from the pier!
I thought it was a little creepy to have an amusement park on the pier
Last night Lauren came over and I made bruschetta and we had pita bread and hummus too. Since coming back from Jordan. I have developed a mad craving for pita bread dipped in hummus.  We drank through almost two bottles of wine and with no hangover this morning, I woke up eager to go to Homebase (equivalent of Bunnings) to get some indoor plants for my room.

I LOVE carnivorous plants and I really wanted a Venus fly trap but they looked on the dead side.

Instead these are the pretty plants I bought and are now proudly displayed in my room.
Reminds me of Phyllis! By chance I could find one with a fuschia pot so it matches the rest of my room.
Saintpaullia- interesting foliage, the leaves are furry and velvety.
Mini suculent babies. They are in the cutest 10cm pots and including the plant, they are smaller than my hands.
I walked from my place to Homebase and some parts of the journey there was not very er.. scenic. Think rubbish littering and spare car parts at the front of houses along the way.

On the way back I took the bus and I had to stand and carry my plants in a box. It was a packed bus and I had plenty of people staring at me while I was balancing the box with foliage half shielding my face. I was the only non African/Carribean person on the crowded bus and I really felt like I was transported to another place during the 15 minute ride.

When I got home, I was so excited about my plants that I rambled endlessly to one of my housemates who was in the kitchen cooking away.

After lunch I decided to go to Oxford St and I really need to get a bit more exercise into me and really, what better way than to walk it off by shopping?

Apart from all things floral and Cath Kidston. I am also obsessed with candles now. I bought these two Lily Flame candles. Currently I have the mango one burning away, filling the room with a juicy and delectable mango scent. Hmm mmm!
Candles in a tin
I also bought a new dress from Dorothy Perkins for work.  It's probably not very practical for moving about in the classroom, but I really like the look of it and it has pockets!

And these blush patent ballet flats that would be neutral enough to be paired with most of my outfits.

Well that is certainly a lot of photos for you to enjoy :) I look forward to hearing about your Sunday!!!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Flowers that remind me of you

Hey Chia

One of the lawyers from my firm brought these flowers into work. They are from her garden! How pretty right?!?

When I saw them I immediately thought of you!

White, pink, soft tangerine- the pretty pastels, made me smile :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Hi Chia!

I am blogging on my way to work as I your last two posts have made me super happy!

I love the way you've started to do your room up! And I love your floral stuff! It's not the kind of thing that I would initially look at, as I seem to be attracted to bold colours etc, but the patterns from Cath Kidson really appealed to me. They are so sweet and pretty looking, and I think the vintage look is really beginning to appeal to me.

So I just loved looking at her stuff on the web, each thing just reminded me of you! Perhaps that is why I have start liking this kind of stuff? :)

I also love your teaching stories! How wonderful they are! Children are so precious! :) Your work sound so rewarding!

Here, the only thing that has happened to me is that my office continues to be freezing cold. So cold that I am wearing a cardigan, jacket, pashmina and gloves, and I am still freezing. I've been in that office for three weeks now, and it's getting unbearable. I get headaches and weird chills from being in the cold. People in the office call it' the refrigerator,' which it is, as anything that I bring in, drinks or food, actually get chilled. The fridge is warmer!

I was hoping the air-con guys would come in (as they kept on saying they'd come, but then pike out). But now, I'm just going to move my office. I don't care, I'm not sitting in there any more. Last night I felt terrible, I didn't go to boxing as I usually do.

Here's a photo of me being miserably cold:

And my gloves:

On the plus side, it gave me a 'legitimate' excuse to buy a nice jacket and gloves to wear in the office :))

Good night Chia!

Teaching delights

Hi Anna

I wanted to blog to tell you some happy things :)

Yesterday and today I worked in a school with the same Year One class. They are gorgeous children and at the end of the first day I could memorize almost all 30 children names to faces! I amuse myself and also the children when we sit on the carpet and I go through their names. It was tough getting back into work on Monday but I'm glad I decided to call up the agency for work because once I got to the school, my teacher mode clicked in and I really enjoyed myself!

I've been to the school a few times before and I love it because it is a new school and it's got a really lovely vibe. I like using the toilets too because it always smells like vanilla and coconut. Haha! Reminds me of tropical islands, pina coladas, warm sea breeze and sand between your toes. Last time I was there about 4 months ago, they were incubating chicken eggs and they were just hatching out! Absolutely fascinating and the most coolest project ever!

Believe it or not, yesterday I took the children for gymnastics! All 29 6 year olds! The problem with supply teaching is that more than half the time there is no plan to work with and you just have to make things up or ask the children/ teaching assistants to find out more. Anyway, it was my first time doing gymnastics and a lot of fun! They had awesome balancing and climbing apparatus and it was really cute watching them show me what they could do. I asked them to think of three moves. First they had to do a balancing pose, then they had to move across the balance apparatus, and finished off with another balancing pose. Very amusing! I did kick off my ballet flats that I was wearing to do a few demos. Mind you I was wearing a dress and tights so I was a little restricted but they understood what I wanted them to do. Haha!

Phonics this afternoon was interrupted by a fire drill and I was very proud of the children for lining up sensibly and following my instructions. Luckily this morning the  maintenance manager popped in to give me a quick briefing about the fire evacuation plan. I didn't really think much about it until I heard the alarm and realised he was giving me a heads up and that was very nice of him. Actually the staff at the school are the nicest I've come across when I do supply work.

There were two other hilarious things that made my day. I had a  mum tell me this morning that I was the most exciting thing that happened to her daughter Sade who is of mixed African/English race. Apparently Sade has a fascination-near-obsession with Chinese people and she couldn't stop talking about having a Chinese teacher. Hilarious!!!! I've had similar responses like that to children and I'm starting to believe that I'm the only Chinese teacher in London. Ah.. and  Mohamed, 6 years old, brown curly hair, bright brown eyes, rosey cheeks, handsome fella said to me:  "Miss Ooi, I think you are beautiful". That totally melted me right on the spot! Sweetest thing ever because it was random and he was so sincere about it! I wouldn't mind having 30 of children like him in a class :)

It's also nice to be told when you do a great job and to be requested to come back. The teaching assistant told me that she was amazed at how much control I had with the children and that the children really enjoyed having me. I have really bad teaching days and sometimes you just get so caught up with the downs that you think you're not doing enough for the children so it is really delightful to hear positive feedback.
Unfortunately I won't be working at the school tomorrow because the teacher I'm covering will probably back from sick leave but tomorrow I will be working at another school that I've never been to before.

I hope you enjoyed reading my teaching adventures on your way to work :)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Moving in


I can't believe how much I've missed blogging and how much I miss reading your blogs! You wouldn't believe how much I was laughing and smiling when I read it as always. It made me want to blog more often :D That was one super blog even if there were some downs.

I love hearing news from you and people that I know and I LOVE that photo of Drew and Katie. Katie looks stunning and oozing elegance in that dress! All of our old group are getting married one by one aren't they? Ah... oh the memories Singapore and all! I think of the Karri Valley memories too! Those were such innocent times. Remember them? ;)

Not to mention the photo of the cutest ukelele player I have ever seen! Reading about Ookiedoba, Taylor Swift and Mr D makes me miss so many things at once and wishing I was there. I think it's the cutest that Mr D has inspired you to play the ukelele. It's hilariously cute the image of both of you strumming away. Envious that you and Mr D have amazing voices and together with Shaz you could work on a ukelele band! Please send a video recording my way :p

All the fun and friends was what I was desperate to come home to when I was having a down time in London. At the same time, I wish I could be there for you when your dad was unwell. I was at school when I got your message and it made me anxious thinking about what you were going through. That triggered some panic for my parents too. It made me think of what I'd do if something like that happened to them. It is frightening and it is more frightening when you live on the other side of the world. I guess you can't worry about it but still have to have it at the back of your mind.

I've been occupied the last few days from packing and unpacking. It definitely takes more time to unpack than pack for some reason. I felt a bit tired from vacuuming the layers of dust and wiping down surfaces because the room was unoccupied for a month and also roomsick, if there is such term? I moved in just before lunch and spent the rest of the day settling in. There are a grand total of 5 other housemates and this is the information I've gathered from bumping into them in the kitchen: one Romanian couple working in hospitality in a hotel, a Vietnamese girl who works as store manager in Forever 21, a Brazillian/German accountant and another Indian man that is away on business and I haven't met yet. The Romanian couple are neat freaks and I am glad of this because at least the communal areas are kept clean and tidy. Nothing worse than a dirty bathroom!

Today was my second day and I slept quite well last night for my first night. I went from a single bed to a king and with all that extra space in a sudden was rather odd and I felt empty. In fact the room is rather empty. I spent the day getting new curtains and matching decor. I've decided to go for the floral fuschia theme. So far it looks like this, but I'm not really happy with it. It is definitely a good distraction from working!

 I went to Cath Kidston store in Selfridges to look for a few things. I love all the floral and polka dot patterns that she uses. I also wanted to print out some black and white photos with friends from travels and was really looking forward to getting them done but I ran out of time. I can't wait to show you the selection of photos that I am going to put up!

Wrapping paper
My new mug

Nothing near what I want it to look like....I really want to paint the walls and get huge vases and pot plants. Would love to get white wash furniture,  but there is no point really since it will need to go when I leave.

On other purchases,  I forgot to post pics of my new Chanel glasses. My old ones were scratched and Pene and I spent ages looking for new frames over a weekend. These are a touch tight on my sides but I love them so much with the discrete gold sides I didn't want to look for new ones.

Have to lose the chumpy cheeks

Ignore dry chaff fingers :(
I hope to be more regular with our blogs. I hope our readers don't give up on us just yet! :)

Have a good Monday xxx

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Far from boring

It has been a while hasn't it?

I love your post! It was so inspiring and refreshing and just what we needed!

I am happy that you have finally found a new place and that this is a new beginning for you! A new area to learn about, and a new room to decorate and make it like home!

On my side of things, it has been far from boring- a mixture of happiness and sadness. I'll try and summarise the things that have happened as best as I can.

Taylor Swift Concert
Well, on the Wednesday or Thursday of the week where I had my gardening leave, I was listening to Taylor Swift's new album and was just singing and dancing around the house when I got a message on my gmail. It was one of our mutual friends Mr D, who asked me what I was doing. I have no shame, so I told him exactly what I was doing. My answer was immediately followed with the question 'are you going to the Taylor Swift concert?' I said no, and then was given a warm and enthusiastic invite to join him and his friends to see her on the Friday night; I said YES!

So in one-two days I just listened to TS' new album 'Speak Now' as I had only heard her 'Fearless' album. There were so many great songs that I needed to learn, in so little time.

Anyways, the night was awesome! It started off on a high when Mr D suggested I try a... wait for it, a triple cheeseburger from McDonalds. OH MY LORDY! It was tasty as!

Yum.... three patties and three cheese... 

The concert was so much fun! Mr D's friends were super friendly and awesome fun! I love love love TS even more so now! =D Thank you for inviting me Mr D! Had a great great time! =) Here's some pics of the concert:
Taylor looking right at me!

She's so talented

I wanna be her

So sweet

Love Story!

After the concert, Mr D inspired me to get a ukulele as he was also learning it, and it sounded super sweet and cute. So my hunt was on to find the perfect instrument.

First week at my new job
The next week, I started working at my new firm- so far it has been amazing! I love the people, and I just feel happier overall. It was a changed that I needed, and at this point in time (though it has only been two weeks) I think that I will definitely be staying here for a while. The only down is that my office is super cold. Apparently, someone had put a thermometer in there, which gave a reading of 16 degrees! I definitely have felt it, as I wear a cardigan, a jacket, a scarf and gloves during the day. They are looking to fix the temperature though, and I am also considering of moving to a different office too.

Anyways, on my second day at work, I got a phone call from my Mom who was distressed. She said 'Anna, Dad is in the hospital and he is being transferred to St John of God.' I was shocked. What made it worse was that Mom had no idea what was wrong with Dad, and that all she knew was that he had come home from school feeling light headed, unwell and with a clammy sweat. After getting off the phone with Mom, I ended up calling Joondalup hospital (as I assumed that is where he was taken) to find out when he was going to be transferred to St John of God. When I finally spoke to someone, she said he was being transferred soon. I then asked what happened to him. She said 'Oh, I can't tell you over the phone...' My mouth went dry.

Part of me had a suspicion that it was a heart thing, as Dad had a heart attack and a triple bypass in 1992. But regardless of my suspicions, the fact that I had no idea what was happening, what Dad had etc I started to tear up with worry. Work was, and has been super supportive and have let me visit him. He ended up being diagnosed as having a heart attack, and he underwent an Angiogram where they ultimately performed an angioplasty to insert a stint to hold open the blocked vein. It all went very well, and Dad is finally home resting.
What saw when I came to visit day one afternoon. I found it amusing because  it was as if Dad finally got loose =)

Drew and Katie's wedding
On the Saturday of the same week, Drew and Katie got hitched! It was another great wedding, and it made me remember our time in Singapore together. Can you remember that trip? It was the only trip that we took as a group. It was such a fun trip! Our first group trip actually! I think it was also the time when I started to get to know you a lot better.

The groom and his groomsmen waiting

Getting married



Drew and Katie looked wonderful! They also looked so happy! Was a happy day! =) The wedding was held at the Scotch College chapel, and the reception at the Swan Brewery. Congratulations Drew and Katie!

My new ukulele
In the meantime, while balancing work, hospital visits (stress and worry about Dad) and wedding, I was able to purchase a ukulele. I had been researching about what one to get, and in my head, I was going to get either a Kala or a Lanikai soprano sized uke, as they were the recommended instrument for beginners. However, I ended up walking out with a Cordoba concert size.

My decision was based on how the salesman played the uke and how it sounded. The Cordoba sounded so full and rich and it came at a very affordable price ($159). I really wanted a soprano size though (the smallest and the traditional size) but the only soprano size that they had in that brand was $500 something dollars! It sounded so sweet, extremely cute; however, I could not bring myself to purchase such an expensive instrument give that I haven't even tried playing it.

I ended up purchasing it on one of the days that I was visiting Dad at the hospital. When I arrived, Dad had just come out of his Angiogram and Angioplasty procedure and was sleepy. So I took out the uke and started playing some chords quietly. Dad was sweet and with his soft and sleepy voice said "Oh, that sounds nice."  It made me feel a little teary, that even after being exhausted from the heart attack and the procedures, he still had the energy to encourage me.

So this week whenever I have had a free moment at home, I have been learning how to play chords and learning how to strum. I am going slowly, but it makes me happy. It's so cute and happy sounding! I hope that one day I will be good enough to take it out and jam with others (Mr D, Clem and Shaz have all mentioned about having a jam session!) But until then, I will keep on practicing!

Me and Ookiedoba
I've named my uke 'Ookiedoba' a blend between ukulele and Cordoba =D

If I get good enough, I definitely think I'll purchase a soprano size, as that was the original appeal for me- to have a tiny, cute instrument that makes cute music. Though, I still love Ookiedoba!

So that is all that has happened on my side of the world.

Tell me more about your new place!!! =D