dream & crave

Chocolate cake…perhaps a nice, creamy, dense cheesecake.

Talking about cream, a hot bowl of cream soup would be great too. Then maybe a second bowl of something else. French onion soup. Oh yes.

A hot toasty Sun Biscuit from Taiwan, to go with some oolong tea.

A hot casserole of baked pasta smothered in cheese with spinach; raw or cooked, it sounds good too.

Roasted chicken breast that has been marinated in mum’s lovely turkey rub recipe. Yum. Or perhaps why not a turkey? Or maybe a stew. Mum’s ayam ponteh and maybe ma you ji (sesame oil chicken)? Everything she cooks would be great.

Warm mashed potato mixed with the right amounts of cheese and butter and some milk, a creamy mess then drizzled with meat sauce. To be devoured with Mum’s chicken stew, made sweet with long-cooked soft red carrots.

Maybe just a bar of Rittersport’s white chocolate w/ hazelnuts would suffice.

Or a great pot of thick tom yum soup from Soi Thai’s across the road. Followed by a bowl of wintermelon ice and chewy sweet potato balls and red beans from Blackball.

A cup of Iced Thai Green tea and a stick of fried sotong (squid) from the Geylang Raya Bazaar.

And finish it off with a red velvet cake slice from Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, with a scoop of Macademia nut ice cream from Haagen Daz on the side.

….

Okay that’s enough, time for my workout session.

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Pretty is(n’t) white

Every day, we walk past or come across some kind of ad that subtly hint at the perception of beauty, or #goals as we would like to call it. Some ads are even sexualised for greater appeal. Like excuse me, do you seriously need to do that for yoghurt?

It has become something that we don’t really notice upon the first glance or thought. But it is definitely being absorbed.

Most of us view having straight legs or (ridiculously) fair skin as being ‘beautiful’. I won’t deny that I have had thoughts on the former every once in a while. In fact sometimes I look into the mirror wishing my thighs were straight instead of being curvy. Then there are days where i accept my body shape and dress to what suits it best (e.g. a nice A-line denim skirt; i love denim skirts wheee) and i feel great about myself and my body.

I digress.

So I was on Facebook as usual and uh, I came across this ad in which i simply…cannot siaaaaa. 

Like i get it – its their culture. But. The comments section. A majority of commenters did not seem to realise how the product was being marketed to them. It was as if they agreed or perhaps thought that its nothing much.

Of course, some people do want fairer skin and I’m not against it. But companies these days have no idea how much of an effect their campaigns have on young people.

Perhaps they made these distasteful word choices by accident.

In other news, why not opt for clearer-looking skin?

Coz that not only makes you look healthy, it is actually healthy.

 

The Cost of Beauty?

‘Oh my god, what a waste. What an absolute waste.’

It was a pretty jarring wake up call.

Years of collecting makeup & skincare products had all boiled down to a pile of expired chemicals in plastic tubes and bottles.

This is just the start.

It was before Chinese New Year this year and I was hell-bent on clearing out stuff that I didn’t need anymore. That included stationary that I wasn’t using (i.e. those pesky free black-ink ballpoints from Exam Welfare packs), clothes (oh yes, this is a story for another day) and for the first time in forever; makeup & skincare.

By the time I went through my stash of once-pretty cosmetics, there were approximately 25 products that I was ready to throw out.

That includes most of the products you see up there (except the body shop soaps, mum helped finished them ‘coz she travels). Well, of course, they’ve been with me for what? 5 years?

Exactly the time I started poly and watching Michelle Phan’s videos.

There I was sitting at the dining table, a plethora of products in front of me, along with a plastic bag and a plastic knife and fork from a McDonald’s breakfast set. While Dad scrambled to clean the altar, mum vacuumed and bro…well, he was in his room- I proceeded to scrape out every tube of lipstick, eyeshadow palette on the table. Followed by squeezing the heck out of my tube of 4 year old BB cream and primers. And then the emptying of about 10 bottles of semi-dried nail polish.

Things that when through my mind:

  1. WOW WHAT A FUCKING WASTE OF MONEY.
  2. I never really used all these.
  3. Omgggg I spent $30 on that
  4. Maybe I should keep this? Ah what the heck it was free
  5. But its branded. Chanel leh, when can I own one again.
  6. BUTTTTT it’s been 5 effing years, its disgusting
  7. Ohhhhh it smells like a chemical spill
  8. WOW HUNDREDS OF BUCKS IN THIS PLASTIC BAG NOW.

It was crazy. By the end of it, there was a plastic bag (you know the ones you use to put raw veggies in at the supermarket?) 1/3 filled with all that. It looked like…liquefied pizza, with beiges and greens, and the occasional purples and blues. And the red lipstick bullets which could pass off as bell pepper slices.

The next thought- Is it safe? Throwing a bag full of bio-hazardous material (think nail polishes) into the trash just like that? But there’s no way else is there?

All that money wasted on products i rarely used and the effect of it was more damage on this planet. Way to go. On the bright side, all the containers were going to be recycled anyway :)

MORAL OF THE STORY:

  • buy products with lesser packaging
  • buy it only when you really need and when you’re sure you’re gonna use it
  • If not, then do a makeup swap with a friend!
  • Of course, that said, please check the expiry date before you ruin your friend’s face.
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To be thrown 12 months after opening!

  • Rinse & recycle your cosmetic bottles, tubes, etc.
  • Buy eco-friendly products (I’m setting my sights on brands like Mt. Sapola)

Makeup = chemicals

Gallery

Monday Blues

Have you ever had a day when it’s just going perfect till something of your own doing ruined it? And then you just wanna kill yourself for that few minutes, followed by half an hour of self loathing?

*breathe*

Today is the first Monday where class ends in the morning and i have absolutely nothing on after that. Okay its self-declared. But hey, uni’s all about skipping class to catch up on class right? Haaaaaa.

After an hour’s train ride, i grabbed an iced latte from McCafe  (coz its cheaper than Starbucks and CBTL, and still tastes good).

But the lady ominously left out the sugar syrup.

*nuuuuuuuuu*

I should’ve given in to thy KOI craving instead.

Reached the library, not too crowded YAY.

Found a seat YAY.

With a plug double YAY (by the way, NTU you needa up your power point game).

Proceed to take out all the stuff i need…. *internal wails blast through thy amygdala*

‘F*CK BETCH HOW COULD YOU.’

‘OF ALL THINGSSSSSS.’

Lo and behold, i forgot my laptop charger.

Well my lappy can last for 2 hours so should be fine i guess?

‘CHICKEN NUGGETZ.’

20% battery.

Welp, what a wasted trip.

Here’s to you peeps who’s not having a smooth monday <3 Hang in there *fistbump*

#mondayblues

Do what makes you happy

‘Why don’t you try something new?’

Well, i did. In a bid to desperately try something new, I tried Wing Chun in poly…and then dancesport and guitar ensemble. I must have been high. But ’twas cool tho.

Sometimes, its not about trying different things, but simply doing things that make you feel happy. I mean, that’s the basis for doing anything, right?

And singing in a choir makes me happy.

Despite facing the conductor’s wrath (truth in secondary school HAHA), despite the long hours of practice, despite the tension and angst that came from time to time…

Absolutely no regrets returning to choral singing in university.

The past 2 years (woah) with the NTU choir have been nothing short but amazing. Apart from the minor hiccups and tension, there have been too many great moments to count.

Being with people whom you can be silly with;

When you’re standing among the section and you can hear the chords clashing or melding together;

When you’re in the LT (lecture theatre) and suddenly, all that matters is the music you’re making with friends;

For 3 hours, schoolwork is almost non-existent. If reality hits me like a truck once practice is done, so be it.

These are the moments worth living for.

5th March 2016

The sheer amount of love and faith on stage during the final moments of our last rehearsal was immense. All the bad vibes out the window, as if it never happened, leaving all the good moments. Backstage, in the holding room; minutes before we were due to perform, we hugged and congratulated each other, thankful for the past 8 months.

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Credits: Jazz’s friend

Baba Yetu was so much fun with all the percussionists and the pianist. And the absolute joy and pride when we did ‘I Lived’ at the end. Everyone was smiling. Pure, genuine happiness.

The entire concert whizzed past so fast we all kennut.

I remember everyone -okay, us girls- screaming and jumping once we were off stage, as if we just downed a couple of espresso shots, once everything came to an end. How we did the cheer for Mr Darius & Mr Tham (much LOL) and how everyone excitedly went,’See you on Monday!’ before rushing off to meet family & friends. As if it were for granted, as if we were all going to sing again as a family.

 

These are the moments worth living for.

#withdrawalsymptoms

 

 

To each and everyone who sang their hearts out that night, thank you, GREAT JOB and YAYYYY WE DID IT! <3 And a million thanks to Mr Darius & Mr Tham (GOODLUCK FOR YOUR FUTURE ENDEAVOURS!!) for your guidance the past 8 months aaand to all the committee members (esp Kok Ho & Trang!!) thank you for all your hardwork and dedication aaaaaand i should stop or else appreciation night nothing to- I should stop.

BYE. <3

Featured Image – Credits to Joelle Yong 

 

 

Limbo

There are more important things to do right now but the whole fever thing is making my lower body ache like crazy.

On the bright side, I still have time for thy throat to recover in time for the concert. (D-day in exactly 2 weeks)

Maybe falling sick now is good.

Maybe my whole being needs a break.

Being on drowsy pills does give a pretty legit excuse, right?

Maybe the celestial beings made it rain today so drained souls like me can take comfort from living in utter limbo: a world where you’re mindlessly existing…like clockwork.

School’s tough as usual, just a little strange that there’s only the 3 of us now without M & Dq. Choir keeps me sane but it brings its own set of challenges.

Aite, time to catchup on lectures before hitting the sack.

Enjoy the evening dear you. *points to you through screen*

 

Anxiety, Body and Me

It’s pretty apt that one of the core modules this semester includes Neuropsychology in Stress and Resilience.

This semester isn’t the worst, but it’s definitely been the most hectic so far: a juggling act. Commitments and schoolwork and revision and relationships, etc.

Then again, almost everyone at this point in their lives are probably experiencing the same thing right? Just so happens that every single one of us have our own ways of dealing with the stresses (and stressors) in our lives.

And well, this is one of mine: to rant, to share. 

In all honesty, I feel assured when I read stories that I can relate to. In some way, it as if I’m not alone. And in turn, I hope my story can do the same for someone else out there as well :)

So yes, I’ve been dealing with anxiety & stress for most of my life. It’s not clinical anxiety, I’m not on medication or anything. But I have had been under medication for the physical manifestations of anxiety.

When I was 16, anxiety came in the form of the tightening of my chest, as if I was wearing a tight t-shirt; as if I was chest-deep in water. Sometimes it got so tight, it hurt and I couldn’t breathe. Mum had to force me to stop studying or working on my CCA duties, to force me to do nothing.

When I was 17, anxiety made me itch. My skin would break out in hives (swollen and itchy rashes) whenever I was cold. Air-conditioned rooms, windy days, a dip in the pool, cold drinks. The moment I’m exposed to the Singaporean weather or a hot cuppa, the pink splotches dissipate.

The western doctors Mum brought me to couldn’t find out what was wrong with me. Dust allergies, food allergies. It wasn’t till the TCM (traditional chinese medicine) doctor guessed that it could be due to stress. It sounded absolutely incredulous to me back then. I was placed on a concoction of herbal potions and western drugs and creams at that time. Nothing worked. So I just kinda lived with it.

Changed my wardrobe (long pants and jackets all day errday), avoided swimming, iced drinks and desserts were taboo.

Unknowingly, as I settled into life in SP and considered it my 2nd home, the rashes disappeared. As if the past 3 months were nothing but a distant memory. (I did google my condition and it came up to cold urticaria)

Subconsciously stressed and anxious?

Yea, the TCM doctor was right.

When I was 20 and new to university, anxiety came in the form of acne. It was as if puberty came late. And I can understand how people with acne struggle with their confidence. Acne aside, I felt like I could not be myself around people. My already-deficient self-esteem was crushed in the first few months of school, I was reserved, kept to myself, believed that I wasn’t worthy of anything, or for anyone. 

I remember thinking pretty scary thoughts. But that’s a story for another day.

Now I’m 21 and its back to chest-deep-in-water sensations plus gastric (after i eat. whut).

Bound so tight by the pressure to be the best at everything and the cruel uncertainty that perhaps, maybe, I’m just not that good enough.

One thing has always been a constant though: a little inkling even in the darkest of moments; that eventually, everything will be alright.

And I’m sure this time will be no different.

You’ll be alright.