Sunday, September 20, 2015

Unity in Diversity

Gosh.. It has indeed been quite a while since my last post in May 2015.. ! So many things have happened and actually I had meant to write on so many things.. Alas... reality is that I have not..

Unity in Diversity - this tagline keep on ringing in my head especially with the yellow and reds bruhahaha lately .. For me Unity in Diversity is very much alive and present in my own family.

Unity in Diversity requires each person respecting the other as an individual., regardless of each's interest, expertise and passion. It recognizes the strength in complementing each other, drawing the best in each and every person.

Why do I say that diversity is present in my own family ?

Case no. 1 : My first-born. An outdoor enthusiast and a passion for conservation ans sustainability.

She did her Diploma in Sports Science, Degree in Sports Science - Outdoor Recreation. She has worked for 3 years in an outdoor adventure company. She is currently pursuing her Masters degree in Outdoor Environment and Sustainability Education in Edinburgh Scotland.

Case 2 : My second-born. True to her name which means the 'active one', she walked at 8 months old and is totally passionate in sports. Hockey is her game amongst other team sports like basketball, floorball, and others

She did her Diploma in Sports Science, Degree in Sports Science. She worked for about a year at a leading trampoline park where she is was one of the pioneer jump referee. She is now a  Physical Ed teacher at an international school and sometimes leads jump aerobics classes due to great demand from her clients.


Case 3 : My third and youngest. From small she is always singing and could memorize the Disney songs..! She loves to draw and creative in making crafts like bracelets, bookmarks, friendship bands and the likes. In school she took the school band from zero to hero. I could clearly see that she has leadership and creative streaks in her.

She is currently pursuing her degree in Professional Design : Advertising. Already gaining some recognition for her creativity, she has completed quite a few projects. From T-shirts, to mural wall in a concept restaurant, to her current passion in makeup and face-painting.


The most frequent question I get asked is 'who is the sportsmen - you or hubby ?' or 'who is the artistic one ? you ?' or I don't remember you being outdoorsy.. is your hubby an outdoor enthusiast ?'

The answer is No, No, and No... well.. not directly.. perhaps some hidden unpolished talent in arts and sports but certainly not reflected in both me and hubby's professions.

Case 4 : The husband and father to the above 3 cases.. He is the 'fish man' and introduces himself as 'saya ternak ikan' - I breed fish.. in short, his background is in Aquaculture.  His other passion is photography.. hmm.. maybe that's where the creative streak in our offspring comes from.

After decades of being in the aquaculture and agriculture sector, he has come a full circle and now enjoys teaching and sharing his knowledge with others.


Case no. 5 : Me..!! The mother to the 3 diverse girls and an 'isteri penternak ikan' wife to the fish farmer..! My background and profession is totally different from the 4 cases above. I studied Computer Science and have been an IT professional all these years. First as an Analyst then into managerial position and now part of the top management team.

In my line of work, I do get to travel a bit for conferences, exhibitions and business meetings. My passion is building teams and nurturing talents into their fullest potential.


So there... Unity in Diversity. I believe it should start at home, at each of our family unit. To recognize each family member's passion, building and encouraging them to pursue their passion, however diverse it may be from your own. Perhaps then it would make Unity in Diversity of a larger scale much easier and successful...

Let us each make a difference and move towards Unity in Diversity !!! 
For Malaysia...!!!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

School Holidays = Balik Kampung = Weddings....!

YES,,, ! School holidays are here again.. Hmm.. no I am not excited as I no longer have school-going kids.

But I remember those days when I look forward and dread school holidays.. Two contradicting feelings...? Yes.. because.. though I had looked forward to spending more time with the kids during school hols, there is always this weird coincidence that there is a major project or event at the office and everyone's holiday is sort of frozen... and to make matters worse.. the kids would be asking endlessly.. Mak, aren't we going ANYWHERE these holidays....???? Anyone can relate to this..?

There are other times when you can take some days off but when you try to make hotel reservations, they are all full... oh well.. back to cracking head to figure out what could be done..

The weekends of school hols seem to be filled with weddings of cousin, niece, nephew, bff's son or daughter one or the other.. though it is lovely to fulfil those invitations, it is sometimes tiring racing from one part of the town to another...

But I do miss school holidays now.. simply because now it is almost impossible to get the WHOLE family together.. College's semesters does not coincide, their work off-days are not the weekends.. this poses another totally different challenge...

oh well... that's life I suppose.. we have work within the limitations.. be grateful with the opportunities to be together..

Things would be different in the kampungs though.. School holidays is the time to spend jumping into the river to see who makes the biggest splash, time to look for that particular bird and try to 'pikat' to bring it home, time to challenge friends for a game of carom on the balcony or ''anjung' of the house...


Friday, May 15, 2015

Lone benches.... not lonely

I have this fascination with benches.. wherever I go I will try to snap pictures of lone benches... Lone here means single or solitary or unoccupied benches...

Sometimes we tend to equate lone with lonely or loneliness... But not in my case.. each time I see a lone bench I wonder who have sat there and for what purpose..

It could be to rest awhile and take a breather after a long walk or jog...

Bench at small tasik sek 7 Shah Alam

Bench at Taiping Lake Gardens

Some benches seem a perfect place to read a book or even write a poem..

King's Park - Perth

Somewhere in Perth

Some benches seem perfect for a meeting or discussion.. or even a picnic..!!

Serious family conference could have taken place here - Lake Toba, Medan

Good picnic place : Mornington Peninsular - Melbourne

A game of carom on a Sunday afternoon here perhaps..?

As you can see, there lots of stories that each bench can tell...

Here are Stanford University, students have their lunch sitting on the benches, catching up with their friends on the latest gadgets, startups and not forgetting football.

Humans are not the only ones that frequent the benches,,, 

perhaps this bird wants to join your picnic..!!

But there are times when we sit on a bench and wonder at the creations of the AlMighty....

and realize how small and insignificant we are compared to all Allah's creations..

So next time you see a lone bench, see beyond the structure.. imagine who sat there, what they do then..!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Reunions bring happiness

I don't know about you but 2014 was a year of reunions... Primary school reunion, Secondary school reunion and college buddies reunion to name a few.. The turnout for each reunion is pretty impressive..!

I suppose hitting the big Hawaii Five O has something to do with it.. It's a celebration of life and achievements, it's a celebration of friendship re-found, it's a celebration of memories created together oh - so long ago..

the committee that worked hard to put it all together

wonderful to be together again..

It is even more amazing meeting friends that you have not met since Std 6 and you pick up the conversations as if you are never apart..!

Another reunion to be remembered in 2014, the Regent girls reunion. The 4 of us were house-mates at the Regent apartment, Though we kept in touch fairly regularly, we have not been on an away girls trip with all 4 of us.. We decided to make it this trip and celebrate our birthdays (2 of us have the same birthday.. and all of us in February, March and April) Boy..! did we have a lovely time..!!


Happiness is having many many many friends from different walks of life.. friends who love you for who you are regardless the circumstances..

To all my friends.. You've got a Friend.. in ME..!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Remembering Mak on Mother's Day

I used to send her flowers sometimes, fruit basket sometimes and a lunch treat on Mother's Day... It has been almost 10 years since she is gone and I still do miss her dearly.

My mother was a teacher.. She started to be a teacher when she was 13 years old. Those days, once you can read and write and count fairly well you get to teach others. It was not until much later that she enrolled in the teachers' training college in Malacca.

Last Sunday was Mother's Day.. and memories of her flooded my mind as my heart ached to be with her.As I remembered each stage of my life with her, I reminisce the advice and words she used to say... be honest, be sincere, be kind to others.. When you are tasked to carry out a task or piece of work, it is 'amanah' that we need to carry out the best we could.

At another stage of my life, she always reminded us her children that we should be 'sederhana' or moderate in our life in every aspect. How we spend money for food, clothes, assets, how we conducts ourselves in the many relationships we have with others. To me, her message of being 'sederhana' does not mean to be average but to be moderate, calm, rational and composed.

Another message that she sends out to us not by saying but through her actions is continuous learning. After her retirement, she focussed on learning and gaining knowledge on Islam. She encouraged the womenfolk around the area to come to the masjid to listen to talks, follow the lessons and organized many many activities. Those deeds gave her such joy and she gained many many friends through these activities.

Those moments of hearing her advice, those observations of her activities, those messages that she kept reminding are what shaped me to be what I am today. As a mother myself now, I hope that if I can be even a small percentage of what my mother was, I would be happy.

I hope I am and can continue to be a mother that sets an example for my children to follow and let it live on for generations to come..

Happy Mothers Day... everyday...

Al-Fatihah for my mother - Hajjah Kalthum

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

New kid on the block

It's interesting how the influence and encouragement of others makes us do things.. here I am writing this second entry to my d├ębut after...6 years..! oh my..! Has it been that long..?

I was following the FB comments on my bff's post and got caught up with the excitement of reviving their blogs... hmm.. perhaps its time for me to join the crowd.. though I really wouldn't know if anyone would want to read my blog.

'Happiness is a choice' has been my mantra for a long time. Although we live in a pretty negative world (do you see many good happy news ?), I believe there is always something to be happy and grateful for. Thus the theme of my blog.. and I hope to share bits of happiness in my blog.

Can't write long now.. but will be back soon.. very soon.. not another posting in 6 years time..!

Till then.. Choose to be Happy..!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Fulfilling my 2009 resolution..

'Well Mak, you have less than a day to fulfill your resolution..' that's the reminder I just heard from my blogger daughter. She asked me on New Year 2009 day what are some of my resolutions. Most is the normal.. I need to lose weight, exercise more etc etc and then she said.. Why don't you start a blog ?

and I thought .. why not ?

Days and months past.. work caught up with me (excuse no. 1) study struggles especially with multiple assignments (excuse no.2).. I have no maid !! (excuse no. 3) ... What would I write on ?? (excuse no. 4)

I did not 'cancel' my resolution, but kept putting it off.. till now... If don't do it now, I never will.. maybe it would appear in 2010 resolutions and 2011 and 2012

So here I am.. starting a blog.. about what I really believe in and need to keep reminding myself........ 'Happiness is a choice'