Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Let's Talk About Business

I've started to notice I have interest towards business in 2009. But I really never do anything about it. So, as the years passed, I thought my idea of having my own business will just bury inside me. Truthfully, I never had the courage to learn as it is something very risky to me. I am the type of person who don't like risk..even if there is risk, I'll minimize it as possible.

via Tumblr

But the thing about life, if you don't take the risk, you just would not know it. Hence, I took the risk of venturing into business in early 2015. I chose to sell muslimah attire, specifically jubah. I knew it would be difficult to compete with the bigger names so I put a little twist in the design by incorporated a little mix of batik garutan (from Indonesia). I put all the effort, money and of course faith for it to be successful. One mistake I've made, I overly trusted the tailor. The final products are not as good as the sample T-T 

It's okay, one mistake does not stop me from being myself. I started selling handmade batik material imported from Indonesia. The sales was good,,very good BUT there is imitate products, the printed ones. And the price is far more cheaper. There it is, I cannot sustain the competition. I finished off my stocks and whatever balance, I'm going to do my tops :p Some people don't get it why I do business. They think my salary was not enough, I'm too greedy bla bla bla.. No. I'm pursuing what I am interested in. I like fabrics and fashion (also food..hihi) So, what's wrong with sharing the nice things to others. Some people don't know where to get the products so I made available to them. Only then, we talk about money.

For the time being, I still active doing business but as agent and dropshipper only. It's okay to start back. I believe that I am still pursuing my dream as long as I don't give up. What other thinks, well whatever. Negative people are best to keep away :)

This is my business Instagram account.
You are most welcome to follow. 
Thank you :)

p/s: I should share with you what I learnt in the course of making business for the past years. Later!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Career Advice To My Younger Self

I started my first job in 3 weeks right after I finished my final exam paper. You know the feeling you had when you've been offered a job,,real time job (not an internship :p), you got so excited. Well, so did I. Excited that I would not be jobless and moping around the house wondering when I'll get a job living with my parents eating out their money. Haha.

via: Google

Although I am excited to start my first job, I had butterflies when I stepped in the office the day I reported. It was different you know when you had experience and you were just a fresh graduate. Now, after almost 5 years I left campus life, I like things I wish I knew back then when I first stepped in the working world. Hopefully, it'll be useful to all future graduates out there. 

Office is more than just work - You'll spend tons of hours in a week at the office..40 hours (or more definitely), so the tips for you here is to have friends at work. It is boring when you are always alone. When you feel stressed out, you can rant to these friends and they will get you because you guys are at the same environment. Imagine if you're alone then you ranted out to someone who is outside the office, who will understand you. So, be nice and have friends.

via: Google

Stand up for yourself - You will definitely be reporting to someone when you're working (unless it's your own company). I had 2 bad negative supervisors before, and negative here means whenever they speak, it always negative. I used to take their words seriously and try to improve to whatever expectation they had in mind. Little did I know, these type of people..well they just like being negative. So, one day I decided not to allow them to belittled myself anymore. The important lesson here, bullies are not in school only, they are everywhere. So, stand up for yourself.

Office gossips and politics are real - Lesson 1, don't indulge yourself in those even you are trying to make friends. You for sure would not need those type of friends. Lesson 2, don't be the one who spread the gossips. It will make you look like hurmm.. tin kosong..no real values whatsoever. Lesson 3, office politics are everywhere, so if you resigned from company A because of this, you'll definitely find it again in company B.

Speak up - You know when you are less experience, you tend to speak about your ideas INSIDE your head. You are maybe afraid that your ideas will get rejected or maybe your working environment don't appreciate new ideas from young executives. I've experienced it all. You need to learn to speak up about your ideas and opinions. As for something you are blurred about, just ask questions.

Your teammates are not your rival - Please just don't. No backstabbing or bad-mouthing your own teammates in front of your boss.

Continuous learning - You will not know everything. Even you are a first class student, when you enter the working world, your experience is still zero. Yes, you have the basics but that's it. So learn with everyone, even the tea lady. Everyone has their own lessons for you to learn.

Discuss - There are tasks that we dread to do and keep postponing it to other time. Procrastinate really not the answer. I used to be like this. But through out the years, I learn to discuss with my boss and when things are beyond my control, my boss will take action. Better than you doing nothing and then it all be too late.

via: Google

This list would not be everything as I will learn new tips and tricks along the way. At my current job, I remembered all these and Alhamdulillah, my daily working experience and environment is smooth sailing. I believe in one thing, choose the work you love and you will not feel it as burden.

Monday, June 13, 2016

One Month Before The Terrible Two

At 23 months old, Hanna talks a lot. Well, in her own language of course. And it comes with the tantrums as well. She can be..hurm..very pushy. When she wants something she wants it now. She don't understand later. Well, I think most toddlers are like that. I read somewhere before. that at that age, they feel all sort of emotions but they don't know how to communicate it yet, hence the tantrums and all sort of behaviors that us, parents, label as naughty.

See that duck (or chicken..it's confusing, really) she's holding?
Yea..instead of ice cream, she wanted that. Why do you want that???

Around this age, Hanna also gets excited of all the things that she thought are for her. For example like my dad's (Hanna's Tok Daddy) birthday celebration on last Saturday. She was very excited and thought that cake was for her. Lagi excited bila nampak lilin! What she did was she poked the cake with her chubby finger and licked the cream. And then.. clapped her hands. Oh, manners Hanna, manners. Haha. One thing, when she really like something, she goes "wahhhhh.." especially when she joined me for shopping. Yes, that one is all from me :p

And of course..dah pandai mengadu sekarang ni. When she is upset with me, she will go to her dad. When she is upset with her dad, she'll come to me. But she will utter the same word "Ma...niiiii". Well, that is her mengadu words. When she try to be funny (and it is funny) she called her dad "Abuuuu" instead of Ayah. Sorry love, this one is a story to keep :)

The "I am a big girl" phase. She wants to do everything on her own. She like to feel pretty. And I think this one is because she is a girl.  She will ask for her lotion every night to put on her face, hands and legs. She put on everything by herself. When it is time to go out, she will ask for perfume. My expensive perfume T-T 

Datin Hanna :P

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Homemade Cookies For Raya

This year is the 4th Raya for us as husband and wife. For the Raya preparation, I mean about the food, I will always prepare the chicken rendang and nasi impit for us as breakfast before we went to my parent's house.

As for the Raya cookies, usually I will just order/ buy the ready made. What people call kuih tunjuk-tunjuk. Well, you just point which one you want and pay for it, then off you go. Betul la jugak. Haha. This year, I want to do something different. I am thinking of baking my Raya cookies, yes homemade by myself. It would be fun to get Hanna's "help" in the kitchen. I just need to get the ingredients to make those cookies. My husband requested cornflakes cookies. Well, who does not love those :)

My assistant for groceries shopping today ;)

Here are my tips to get this done (read: hopefully, it'll get done)

#1 Shortlist Recipe
I ask what my husband wants. I know which cookies I want. Hanna will eat all since she loves munching. So, any cookies she'll eat. Haha. The recipe should be simple since I am working and I need to find time to prepare and bake.

#2  Google The Recipe
Of course I need recipes for those chosen cookies. Unlike cooking, I rarely bake. I bake on occasion (read: only for Hanna's birthday), so referring to recipe is much needed. 

#3 Groceries List
Don't waste money buy extra ingredients you think you'll use. That's why it is important to have the recipe first then only prepare the groceries list. Plus, you don't want to max out your grocery budget for unnecessary ingredients right? Remember, when you made homemade food, you're supposed to save money.

#4 Time
Choose convenient time to bake. If you're working, don't choose weeknights. You can start on Friday night and weekend. The time you want to spend baking is really up to you. I am thinking to bake on Friday night and weekend nights only. So during the day I can do something else. I'll start with the least delicious first maybe. Because if I start with the most favorite cookies, later during Raya, it'll all be gone :P

Hopefully, it'll get done. Haha!

Friday, June 10, 2016

Disturbing Issue

About a week ago, on Facebook, there was a viral post regarding a Telegram group of pedophile in Malaysia. The members of the group is about 750+ members. That is really a lot and it is a very alarming news. Of course I am worried. Why should not I?

I am a mother and have a toddler daughter. It is true, that no place is safe now. Then there is this comments on why you should not share so much posts and pictures about your kids. I love sharing moments with Hanna. Why us as the parents should be blamed? Of course, I do agree with filtering the appropriate photos. With the sick pedophiles out there and for all we know is in our close circle of trust, yes we must be extra be careful. 

How you identify a pedophile? Well, you can't really tell actually. They mix with us, look like us, live among us. It is heartbreaking when I read the posts of confessions of adults which previously have been sexually harassed in the past when they were little.  Even more worst, when they told adults about what happened to them, they were not believed. How could you as a mom believe your little girl would make up such stories? Geram rasa.

I hope that there will be a public access to see the sex public offenders list so we parents can take extra precautions with whom we mix around. As for moms, come on, believe your little ones. Yes, even it is something you denied, something hurtful to you. If it is hurtful to you, imagine how much your little girl/boy hurting? And when you as mom, who supposed to protect him/her shut them by not believing their stories, that hurts even more. 

And right now, I am scared..thinking they are a lot of people in our circle of trust that we see as normal people but they are actually not normal. They are monsters who will destroy our kids childhood. *sigh*

Financial Management I Wish I Knew Before I Graduated

Sekarang ni bila scroll Facebook, banyak page yang promote a good financial management kan. Maybe dulu-dulu ada je tapi biasalah.. nama pun undergrad.. kalau online tuh, facebook biasa scroll benda2 tak ada faedah pun. Kalau online pun, online benda nak shopping. Naive and very indiscipline T-T

So, bila dah grad, awareness on how to manage duit gaji, cara savings, hutang mana yang tak patut buat dulu, semua I tak tahu. The very first mistake I've made was beli kereta baru. Yes, my parents ade chipped in some money + my own savings..so downpayment I tinggi. Tapi still.. monthly payment for brand new Saga FLX was almost RM 400 monthly for 5 years. That was in 2011. 

Yelah, contoh gaji graduate RM 2,500. Yes, tak banyak pun tapi ok lah since I live with my parents kan. Pastu bersih dalam RM 2,200 je kot.. Tolak RM 400..dah tinggal RM 1,800. Expenses macam lunch, minyak, and tol estimate dalam RM 500. Ada balance RM 1,300. The second mistake I've made was tak bawak bekal pergi kerja. Office kat Bangsar South, kedai makan for lunch bukan kedai murah ye. Pastu patut tak payah drive, naik je KTM and LRT. Again biasa la, orang baru kerja, konon boleh bayar macam-macam sebab konon gaji banyak. KONON je. Overall, patut boleh simpan max RM 1,500 mcm tu. Total savings, kadang-kadang tak sampai RM 100. Haih.

Then masa nak kawen baru sedar kena start saving up. Nasib baik sedar jugak. So lepas kerja dalam setahun lebih macam tu, my partner and I decided to get married. Mula plan nak sewa rumah, tapi rasa rugi. And again, with a little saving here and there plus my parents help we purchased our own home. The monthly instalment RM 640/month for 20 years. I think this one is the correct decision that we have made :) Alhamdulillah, dah dapat 1 asset. Tapi, lepas tu pergi pulak buat loan easy RHB for RM 20,000 for 5 years. Dah monthly instalment almost RM 500. That time gaji naik sikit, and gaji bersih dalam RM 2,700 and total komitmen masa tu dah RM 900. Dah start rasa beban. Balik semula tak dapat buat savings after kawen tu. 

Not only that, I have 2 credit cards. Hutang credit card masa tu dalam RM 8,000 kot. I dah cannot afford to pay even the minimum. Cari jalan with my husband and settled hutang tu cepat-cepat. See, how bad my financial management masa awal-awal kerja dulu.

So, here are the things I wish I knew so all the mistakes I've made right after I graduated never happened:

#1 Saving is a must
Memang kena asingkan siap-siap bila dapat gaji. First, dapat gaji asingkan total komitmen yang wajib bayar (read: yang tak boleh missed bayar). Then, asingkan for savings, tak kisah lah berapa, simpan je sikit-sikit. The balance for expenses macam groceries and lauk, pandai-pandai cukupkan.

#2 Jangan beli kereta jika tak ada keperluan
Masa study I ada kereta kelisa secondhand, which is in a good condition. Never really know why I decided to purchase brand new car. Menyesal jugak, but luckily that car loan dah fully settled. So, lepas ni, lama lagi I akan beli kereta baru. Saga tu elok je lagi. Hihi

#3 Avoid personal loan
Oh, lupa..personal loan I buat tu for our house renovation. Tapi patut guna duit savings but duit savings tak cukup that time. So, moving forward, semua yang nak pakai belanja besar, I dah buat financial plan, so nampak clear bila savings akan cukup and bila boleh belanjakan duit tu.

#4 Credit card
Simple rule: 
Bole pakai kalau you can make full settlement by due date. 
Pakai for minimum amount. 
Pakai for emergency. 

Tak ada duit for beli baju or kasut bukan emergency. I've learnt it the hard way. Lagi senang pakai cash je. Tak ada cash, tak payah beli.

#5 Proper budget
I start buat detailed budget end of last year. Memang kena buat sebab nak face the reality about my financial position. Barulah nampak how severe it is that we don't have enough savings. Baru-baru ni I revised balik the budget, sebab to take into consideration of my new income. So, hopefully, after this boleh start savings as per planned.

#6 Control your controllable expenses
Duit lunch, duit shopping, duit groceries..semua ni boleh control. Nak jimat, jangan banyak makan dekat luar. Avoid shopping termasuklah online shopping. This one I am still struggling but dah manage to control even not fully. Harap bulan puasa ni jangan membazir. Bese mommies ni membazir beli barang anak :p

I was lucky I hit the ground fast. Nasib baik sedar awal, masa still in my 20s. Kalau tak sedar diri lagi, tak tahulah. Itu pun tahan diri untuk tukar kereta even with a new salary I can afford it. I'm thinking to collect assets rather than tambah hutang :)

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Ramadhan Challenge: Cook Everyday

It is the 3rd Ramadhan. How's your puasa so far? Hopefully, it is all good :) Okay, this post is to share how you can cook every day for the month of Ramadhan. Yes, you too.. the working moms!

There are a lot of tips that have been shared through the social media right? These tips are from my personal experience. Well, you can choose whichever suits you best.

Meal Prep
You can do this over the weekend. Cut out your veggies, packed your meat, chicken and fish in containers. My way is that I apportioned all these uncooked ingredients in each container that 1 container is for 1 meal for each day. So, on the container, you just stick a sticker / write with a marker that container is for what dish. 

Paste Ready
Also, you can do this over the weekend. You know if you used to buy the ready made paste on shelf, you can try to do this instead. So easy and save money! Plus, you know the ingredients yourself so it is the better choice, kan. The pastes I always have ready are like sambal paste, curry paste, masak lemak cili padi paste, tomyam paste. So, when it is time to cook, just saute your paste and add your fresh ingredients. Kan dah jimat masa.

Cook the night before
Well, this one I've just tried for these past 3 days. Okay, this one might be best for weekdays. Hanna live with my auntie as her babysitter. So, my buka puasa will be at my auntie's house. But I am the one who prepare the buka puasa meal. This year, I've changed job and work at Kota Damansara so by the time I reached Klang, it is already 6.30 pm. To avoid the rush and everything, I cook the meal for buka puasa the night before.

Let's say, for buka puasa Wednesday, I cooked the meal on Tuesday night around 10 pm. When I am done cooking, I just half-covered the pan/pot so it would not spoiled. One tip, choose easy meal, so your cooking time would not be more than 1 hour. So, during morning, I just packed the meal in a container and bring it to my auntie's house. I actually felt this is the most convenient way. So for those who has their kids at their parents home and will buka puasa there, you can actually do this. You actually help your parents too since they already took care of your kids. Senang dah ada makanan since mesti susah nak prepare dengan budak2 lagi kan.

Salam Ramadhan :)

Friday, June 03, 2016

3rd Anniversary


On 25th May my husband and I celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary. May also the month when we first met 10 years ago. So, yea.. we've met each other when we were 18. Now, we are married and in addition have Hanna, I could not be more happier and grateful :)

Hanna at 23 month old. What's with the hand Hanna?
#youarenotaprincess :P

Since our anniversary date was on weekday and we are busy with our daily routine, we don't make any reservation at any fancy restaurant to celebrate it. But we managed to have lunch date (with Hanna tagged along, as usual..hihi) on Saturday at Setia City Mall. 
Usually, we would plan our anniversary vacation, but this year with me just started a new job and it is nearing Ramadhan, we decided to postpone our vacation until end of this year. Well, I'm okay with the plan, because it is better to have enough budget and proper planning. Barulah best nak vacation..hehe

Oh, during our outing date that day, we ended up spending more time in Kaison to find wallpaper for Hanna's room and a few other decorations stuff. See, how married couple spent their anniversary lunch date. Just to give you a hint of realistic romantic relationship after being married :P

Oh..she is dancing.. I think..Haha!

Truthfully, little did I know I was going to be your wife 10 years ago. Luckily, I did. Yes, betul, jodoh memang rahsia Allah :) Alhamdulillah for everything. Thanks for being the best husband for me and a great dad for Hanna. Happy 3rd anniversary and many more years to come!