Saturday, February 14, 2015

Tired of livin' like a blind man.

Besides work, life has been pretty uninteresting. Then again, those who have been reading know that I'm in Johor, Malaysia- which is pretty much a dead town with nothing much going on for a single girl in her twenties. 

So pictures are mostly from work, with the ones who keep my life interesting! 

I mean, seriously, spending my days with these girls- how could I ever have a dull day? 

And my nights with this one. 

Story Book Day! It's when we come dressed up as our favourite storybook character. It's a fun alternative to Halloween! 
She dressed up as the Singing Mermaid, complete with leaves in her hair. Of course she won best dressed! 
I was the Paper Bag Princess, if you don't know the story and you have a daughter, please go find out who she is! Definitely my favourite princess. 
Zety and I. She was dressed as The Very Hungry Caterpillar. :)

Back to my first point, how could you have a dull day with these kids? 

We celebrated our 100th day of school by having a Water Party! 
They had so much fun. 

Valentine's Day celebration for us was on Friday, the 13th of February 2015. To celebrate, we made Valentine's for parents, teachers and some staff of the school (i.e. the bus driver, the receptionist, etc.)
Painting their Valentines. 

They also had a sudden obsession with being koalas on Miss May. 

These guys are heavier than they look. 

Look at these girls, having an intense conversation on politics, the economy, etc. 

It is also Drogo's 1st birthday! 
Yes, on Valentine's Day. ;)
Look at that face, he got so many treats today and a new toy! Lucky boy! 
So much love for this furball. 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

I turn the music up.

Here's a break down of how 2015 has been so far! 

Drogo is still as cute as ever. He turns one in a few weeks! 

I got a part-time gig working on Asia's Got Talent. Nothing fancy, I was only booking audience members- mostly office work. But it was nice to be back to the busy bustle of the film industry, even if it was only for a little while.

Filming was at Pinewood Iskandar Studios again, same as where Marco Polo was filmed. I sat at a new spot though, and this was my view every morning for a week! 

I managed to get myself a t-shirt, even though they didn't want to give me one. :)

And finally, after the excruciatingly long Christmas break- the first day of school finally came around!

Our superintendent threw a "Welcome Back/Welcome New Faculty" dinner on the first day of school. Here I am with Heide, my very Spanish co-worker! 

Walks with Drogo allows me to witness beautiful sunrises like these. 

Say hello to Lucy..

..and Marta! 

This little girl loves Drogo. She waits by the gate every afternoon so she can get Drogo kisses when he passes by! :)

I realised I've worn this for a good year now. And I'm going to keep wearing it until I can't anymore. It reminds me of the year I had, realising my dreams and making changes to my life to achieve them. If I can live the rest of my life as Miss May, my life will be one that is filled with much happiness. 

With the sweetest and funniest little girl I know, Lily. 

Spot me! 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Nothing's gonna stop me but divine intervention.

On the way home from work this week, my housemate prompted me with this question: 
"If you could have one CD stuck in the CD player of your car, what CD would it be?" 

My reply?
"A mixed CD."

Which lead my thoughts to the songs I would have in my mixed CD. 

And so, out of the 1056 songs on my iTunes, I have picked my top 12. 

1. Vindicated by Dashboard Confessional
The vocabulary used in this song blows me away: flawed, redemption, mesmerizing, hypnotizing and of course, vindicated.

"I am seeing in me now the things you swore you saw yourself."

2. Follow Me by Uncle Kracker
Okay this is really just my happy jam. Whenever this song starts playing on my iTunes, I get a silly smile on my face and start singing along. 

3 & 4
Follow You Home by Nickelback

Animals by Nickelback

Of course, there are times when I just need some loud music to drown out the world. I usually go to Nickelback for that. And these two are on the top of my list.

Mom, please don't listen to either one. They're very inappropriate and you would not like them. :)

5. Bella Luna by Jason Mraz
I really can't describe how I feel when I listen to this one. I guess it mostly keeps me calm and relaxed. It also does make me want to go to a secluded beach or on top of a lonely mountain. Life doesn't seem so bad when you're listening to this and on your own. 

6. The Call by Regina Spektor
"It started out as a feeling
Which then grew into a hope
Which then turned into a quiet thought
Which then turned into a quiet word
And then that word grew louder and louder
'Til it was a battle cry
I'll come back when you call me
No need to say goodbye"

The first verse in the song captivated me. The rest of the lyrics are equally as good. There are so many ways you can interpret them too. And I love the way the music washes over me, it always puts me in a relatively good mood. 

7. Castle of Glass by Linkin Park
This whole song is brilliant. Its full of metaphors, making me love it that much more. 

8. Dear God by Avenged Sevenfold
A badass with a soft heart? Who could say no to that?

9. Demons by Imagine Dragons
I think this is, hands down, one of the better songs to have been released in the recent years.

10. Lucky by Jason Mraz ft. Colbie Caillat
How could you not love this one? :)

11. One Last Breath by Creed
This is more of a sentimental song for me. It transports me back to a time when a friend and I would play music in the car in the wee hours in the morning and we sang our hearts out like there was no tomorrow. This was our jam. It's not just sentimental though, it really is a fantastic song. 

12. I Promise You (With Everything I Am) by Backstreet Boys
I'm a HUGE sucker for Backstreet Boys and I'm not ashamed of it. They were there for me while I was growing up and they'll continue to be there for me till I grow old. This is definitely one of my many favourite Backstreet Boys track. 

Happy 2015!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Take a little time to hold yourself.

Last post of the year is filled with pictures, which has been lacking of late. 

This is Dagen. I brought him on a day trip to KL one weekend and he had a taste of authentic Malaysian food! 

This is Zety. She works with me in the same classroom! Such a joy to work with. :)

This is Denise and I, in a pretty tipsy state. She's a fellow Canadian and I think I like her more with alcohol in her system. ;)

The girls in my class grooving to "All About That Bass" by Meghan Trainor. 

One of the kids' journal entry on the last week of school. 

With Heide and Kathryn, some of the people who make Johor a little more fun! 

Christmas presents from the kids! 

We're on a four week Christmas break now (two more weeks to go!). I headed down to Melaka for the first week to visit Yang. 

Yang does this as a hobby so she gave me Christmas nails! Too cute. :)

Yang and I. 

Melaka obviously means food. 

So I had fried oyster.. 

Mee goreng..

And cendul, of course! 

And while I was there I found this for Emma! 
It made the perfect Christmas present. 

Jee Leng visited from Singapore to spend Christmas night with me. 
And because it was Christmas, we thought it would be okay to over-order food. 

We did a little shopping the next day before she went back. 

Ending this post with a picture of my little devil. 

Happy New Year! 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Closer and closer to where I wanna be.

So it's that time of the year again. The time of the year where you reflect on what has happened this past year and what you want differently in the coming year. There have been so many changes of late but some of the highlights of my year was: 

1. Discovering that I can do two of my favourite things at once: Travel and Teach. I'm currently pursuing international teaching, thanks to the advice of all the wonderful people I work with!  
2. Working on Marco Polo in the Background Casting Department. That was truly an eye-opening job for me and I enjoyed every second of it. Definitely a job I took just for the experience. 
3. Starting up a preschool from scratch and then running the preschool programme independently. 
4. Accepting that friends come and go and if we were meant to be friends, nothing would have torn us apart in the first place. 
5. Drogo. 
6. Realising that Malaysia is a chapter of my life that needs to end. Heading back to Canada after this school year, June 2015! 
7. Realising that in order to achieve my dreams, sacrifices needed to be made and I made them. 
8. Discovering that I can be happy on my own. 
9. Going on a blind date. 
10. [I'll edit this when the time comes, but for now I don't want to publicise this point yet]. 

With my ten highlights of 2014, I have ten resolutions for 2015: 
1. End my job posting at this school with a bang. Make my mark, and make sure it won't be forgotten anytime soon. 
2. Even though I'm going back to Canada, I want to keep being independent. Hopefully get a job that will allow me to rent my own space and pay my own bills. 
3. Go on that Euro backpacking trip in July. 
4. Confess. 
5.  Be closer to my family. To play a bigger role as a part of the family, to be understanding and to help out whenever I can. 
6. Make memories that will last a lifetime. 
7. Look at going back to school or taking up an additional course. 
8. Write and read more. 
9. Not lose touch with any friends I've managed to stay in contact with over the years. 
10. Cherish the people I love and always tell them how I feel whenever I have the chance. 

It's my second day of Christmas break and I'm already dying of boredom. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

While everybody else is getting out of bed.

Today on my break I read an article called Quarter-Life Crisis: 25 Disappointments You Deal With When You're 25. Feel free to click on it because this whole post will be a semi-rant on this article. 

I'm not 25 yet but I'm really only five months away from 25. So I'm sure that there will be (should be) some "disappointments" in this article that applies to people at the age of 24 as well. 

Following the article, I'm just going to share what I feel my opinion is for each of the 25 points they have listed. 
Thinking that by 25, you'd be working your dream job. 
I'm 24 and I have my dream job. I have my very own classroom, with hundreds of children's books and almost unlimited resources. I have an amazing classroom of children and an equally amazing classroom assistant. The environment might not be the best, but it is definitely better than any preschool I've worked at. 

The most important part is, I didn't get this job by lazing around. I didn't get it by skipping classes and taking the easy way out. I got it with determination and hard work. And while I was at school, I worked three part-time jobs just so I could have some spending money for myself. The thing is, you CAN have your dream job. All you need to do is put in that extra effort. 

Coming to realize that you don't know as much of the world as you thought you knew. 
You should have known that from the beginning. If you started off your life thinking you know everything, you're stupid. That's all there is to it. 

You can look at obstacles in life as a complication OR you can look at them as a challenge. Take the challenge and reach for the stars. Make it a complication and your life will be even more miserable than it already is. 

Finding out exactly how much of your paycheck is eaten up by taxes. 
You should have found that out when you got your first paycheck (which for me was 17). And if your first paycheck is at 25, you need to reevaluate your life. By 25, you should already be able to budget your spending- always taking taxes into account. 

Finding out that supporting yourself isn't as exciting as you thought it would be- before you actually had to support yourself. 
I have a bone to pick with this point. It is nothing short of exciting. I love being able to be accountable for myself. I love living off my own paycheck. I love being in control of what I can and cannot afford. I love the feeling of independence it gives me. I feel a sense of pride whenever I manage to put a couple of bucks into my savings every month. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate everything my parents have given me and I will never take that for granted. But I have never had a complaint about supporting myself. In fact, it's one of the things that I am most proud of about myself. 

Living on your own isn't as glamorous as was expected. 
At this point, I'm beginning to see a problem with the writer of this article. He had such high expectations for when he turns 25 that when it does happen, he's sorely disappointed. He's also probably watched too many movies. Being 25 (or 24) will not guarantee you a Porsche or a high level luxury suite. 

I'm having a pretty grand time living on my own. I have my own space, I get to do whatever I want, whenever I want. There isn't anybody there to tell me how I should cook my eggs, when I should clean my room or what time to wake up on a weekend. No offence, mom. Just trying to make a point. 

Having to accept that working just about always sucks. 
That's probably because you got into the wrong job line, bro. I enjoy my job. I do have to admit that report card and parent-teacher conference weeks suck just because that means late nights and too much information. But in it's entirety? I love my job. And I couldn't have asked for a more rewarding way to sepnd the rest of my life. 

Coming to accept that days are short and that there's little time for things other than work and running personal errands. 
Well, that's why we have weekends you doofus. 

Being disappointed with the people you meet. 
Again, I think this guy just has high expectations for everything. How can you be disappointed with people you just met? In fact, why do let yourself set expectations for meeting people? For example, you meet someone at the bar and in your head, you quickly assume he/she is a lawyer with a five digit salary and brains to match. Except, WHY do you assume? What's the point in that? Just be open and get to know people a little better. Nobody I've just met has  "disappointed" me. They've annoyed me, frustrated me but not disappointed me because again, how can you be disappointed in someone you hardly know?

His point was that there is a lack of fascinating people in the world. I don't think there is a lack of fascinating people. I think that they are fascinating BECAUSE they stand out from the crowd. From the normal people. And there aren't a lot of people who are like that, which is why you don't meet them every day. There's no lack in fascinating people, you just haven't been fascinating enough to attract the fascinating people yet.

Being disappointed with your preferred sex.
Just reading the title of this confused me. I didn't know what he meant until I read the description. He was talking about romantic relationships. Apparently, 25 is an age where romantic relationships tend to fail. But it does not have to disappoint you. Yeah, you can be sad for a couple of days but don't live in that sadness. Pick yourself back up and get back in the game. Shit happens in life and you just gotta clean yourself up.

Losing friends due to different life directions. 
Again, friendships come and go same as relationships. Do you really lose friends? Or do you just lose touch with them? Just because you don't talk to them daily anymore does not mean they aren't your friends. Life gets busy and takes us to so many different places. You can think about it as losing your friends OR you can think about it as you're collecting friends wherever you go.

My high school best friend and I have not spoken in years. She may not be part of my life right now but she certainly played a huge role in high school. I'm not about to scratch her off my friend list just because life took us different directions.

Realizing that most of your friends are awful friends, and then cutting them out of your life. 
If you were able to make friends with them before, they are not awful. Awful people are murderers and rapists. Those people are awful. Some people just have different dreams and opinions from you. Just because they don't agree with you, doesn't make them awful. If you thought they were awful, I wonder how many people think the same way about you.

All that school debt you still have to pay off- and will continue to pay off for a long time.
Okay I can't really argue this point because I have amazing parents who paid for my education. No, they aren't rich. They just chose to save for my education because they're that awesome.

Realizing that your major only allows you to find jobs that, it turns out, you can't stand doing. 
This is a dumb point. You should have known even before committing to the major. Finding a major for you is like finding your life partner. You need to enjoy it, you need to have the passion to do it. If you have those things, everything will fall into place, including a job that you love. All you needed to do was a little bit of research beforehand.

Not knowing where to head in life. 
This point is valid.. FOR EVERY SINGLE AGE. Not just 25. A toddler doesn't know where he/she is headed in life. A teenager has dreams that they work towards but they still don't know what the future holds. I'm 24 and I still don't know what to do with my life, at times. And I'm 99% sure it will be exactly the same when I turn 30, 45 and 60.

"Still" being alone. 
And what's wrong with being alone? In point #9 the writer mentioned that it was okay to date and make mistakes. What changed from #9 to #15? Yes, friends all around me are getting engaged, married and having babies. Me? I just broke up with my boyfriend of 7 years. But I'm happy and there isn't a bone in my body that's worried about "still" being alone. There's nothing wrong with being alone. Absolutely nothing wrong.

Always knowing there are 24 hours in a day.. but never realizing how short that actually is. 
Three words: Poor Time Management.
I'm doing just fine with 24 hours in a day.

Not being happy. 
Being happy is a state of mind. I'm not surprised that the writer is unhappy, given that this is a depressing article about being 25. I'm happy. There might not be much going on in my life but it doesn't take much to make me or anybody happy. You can find joys in the simplest of places- a happy puppy running up and down the halls, a child finally writing the letter "g" she's been working on for weeks, your boss giving you a nod of approval, the thought of having the house to yourself for a whole week, talking to that good friend of yours after a long day of work and a cup of tea before bed. If you started looking for happiness right where you are, you can find it. I have no doubt.

Realizing that your parents aren't the superheroes you once thought they were.
HOW is this even a point? BOTH my parents are superheroes in my eyes. My dad battled with leukaemia for years but he always kept a smile on his face. And even when he knew the battle was going to end, his only concern was for his family. He must have been terrified, but he managed to hide that fear from us and to me, that's more than enough to make him a hero.

My mom? She's the toughest one in the family. After my dad passed away, she had to raise three TEENAGERS all on her own. Can you imagine raising three emotional, rebellious teenagers all by yourself? Well, she did. I'm sure she probably didn't know what to do for the most part but she never gave up. She did the best she could and the family is closer now than we ever were before. I'm proud to say that she's not just my mother but my best friend. I dare you to tell me she's not a superhero.

And in all honesty? Even if your family did not go through what my family has been through, your parents are superheroes just because they stuck with you through the years. And if they didn't? I'm sure they had their reasons and it might have taken them more strength than you could imagine for them to leave you. Don't jump into conclusions before you know for sure.

Realizing that drinking, partying and raging actually does get old. 
Of course it does. That's why you don't see old men in clubs.

Being disappointed with how quickly a quarter of your life has flown by. 
Actually, I think it took a long time to get to where I am. Maybe it's because I worked harder than you did.

For those lucky enough to have found their passion by 25, they're going to have to work a whole lot harder to get to where they want to be. 
I hate how the writer used the word "lucky". I did not get to where I am with "luck", sir. I got to where I am now with hard work, passion, determination and a little bit of charm. And if you've worked that hard to get to where you are now, it's not going to hurt you all that much to work a little harder to get to where you want to be. In fact, what is the point of your existence if you don't strive to be a better person than you were the day before?

How boring life can be. 
Life is only boring if you think it is boring. You're probably bored because you're just too lazy to get off your bum to do something with your life. You won't find passion lazing in bed or sitting in front of a screen all day. You get out there and you experience things. Sure, life can be pretty mundane at times but it doesn't have to stay that way. It is your life. You decide how your life should be. Boring or not.

How much you miss being in school. 
Sure, everyone reminisces. And I won't deny that a majority of people do miss being in school. But personally, I find that the older I am, the less I think about school. The less I think about school, the less I miss it.

Realizing how little time you actually have to create your dream lives. 
Check my argument for point #22. It's because you were probably spending most of your early 20s lazing around.

Not yet figuring out the point of it all. 
Nobody has life figured out. Instead of trying to figure out the point of life, how about we just appreciate the life that is given to us and live it to it's full potential? That way, perhaps your 25 disappointments will be 25 achievements instead.

So yes, by now you should have already figured out that I have a bone to pick with the writer of this article. He may have his opinion but this is mine. Life isn't ever going to be easy. Even with all the money in the world, life has a way of throwing mud in your face. Whether you take it with a negative attitude or a positive one is all up to you. 

For me? I like the optimistic way a whole lot more. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Show the world we are one.

Here is a story of a day filled with mixed-up emotions. It was the day that I agreed to go on a 5 km obstacle run with my coworkers. They had brought the idea up months ago, but I turned it down mostly because I do not like running and it was also expensive (it was like SGD68+ or something). The week before the run, one of my colleagues pulled out due to an emergency and she had asked (the better word would be ambushed) me to take her place.

Being the naive person that I am, I agreed. 
One of the more stupid decisions I've made in my life. 

This picture was taken before the run. In this picture, I was deliriously happy. Delirious because I had absolutely NO idea what I was getting myself into. 

Still no idea and still pretty happy just hanging out with colleagues. 

I am not posting any pictures of myself during the race because I looked terrible. So bad. 

In the beginning, I thought, "Hey, as long as I make sure I'm in front of one person the whole time, I'll be okay." Well, that didn't happen. It was not even 15 minutes into the run and I was already behind. Kind of ridiculous. 

The team had a motto, "Leave no man behind." So there was always someone with me even though I KNEW they were fit enough to keep up with the rest. That, obviously, made me feel bad. 

Then came the obstacles. There was a shitload (pardon the language) of climbing and jumping that I was not prepared for in any way. Given the history of my broken left foot, I was very paranoid jumping down big steps and climbing up stupid wooden obstacles. I felt exhausted, not even halfway through the run. 

Most of the men on the team have touched my ass (sorry, mom) including my boss and his soon-to-be son-in-law. So that was definitely embarrassing.

There was an obstacle (the worst one) that involved swimming in ice water. I was hyperventilating and I definitely could not feel the bottom half of my body for a good 15 minutes after coming out of it. I was soaked when I got out and because I didn't have the right running shorts on, they started falling off because they were wet. At that point, I didn't care if anyone saw my underwear (they were red too which made it even worse) because all I wanted was for the run to be over. 

I walked most of the way to the finish line. I felt inadequate and uncomfortable (especially the part where we had to run on the sandy beach after being in water). 

Then when I saw the finish line, I felt relieved. And happy. So ridiculously happy that it was over. 

When this picture was being taken all I could think of was, "OMG, my boss touched my ass." I was obviously humiliated. 

And then this was just me pretending that I was okay with everything that went down that day. 

This was me just smiling for the camera without much actual feeling other than exhaustion. 

And that's the story of how I ran my first "marathon". 

It obviously isn't ever going to happen again. 

On a positive note, it was nice to hang out with my colleagues outside of work. :)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Is it more than you bargained for.

 I have not disappeared (though I doubt anyone other than my mom reads this)! Adjusting to being on my own has been a big, difficult change. Drogo helps quite a bit and having a housemate helps a lot during the week (he's never around on the weekends). I keep my mind occupied with things at school and when I'm at home, I usually pick up the phone to give friends and family a call. 

Other than the boredom of being in Johor (which, really, has been a problem from the start- long before I broke up with Jeremy), I've been coping. I'm excited to be back with my family next year (yes, I'm going back to Canada next year!) and to go backpacking with best friends (July 2015!). I'll finally be able to cross Italy off my bucket list. 

Anne who is 12, squeezing into her cubby. 

Drogo, being king of the bed. 

My absolutely adorable bunch of kids on United Nations day where they dressed up in clothes from their individual country. 

Because it's BBQ pork. 

Sara and I spending the night together bitching about boys who don't deserve our time. ;)

The kids found a frog and were so excited! 

Ladies Night with some of the other teachers from school. Heide, Carrie A, Carrie O and me! 

My Halloween treat for the kids! 

We're in our life cycle unit now and a parent brought in caterpillars for each child! They are actually turning into caccoons and I'm super excited about that! I might be even more excited than the kids, actually. 

So that's my life. It's not super exciting, but it's enough for right now. Being single after 7 years, there are things that I miss and things that I don't. And I'm trying to focus on the things that I CAN do now and that is what is keeping me going. :)