11 Years Blogging Anniversary

Happy Blogging Anniversary to meeeeeeeeeee….!!! This date, 11 years ago was the day where it all began. I can’t believe it’s more than a decade since, wow! And this is my very first post that I published in my blog.

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Hahaha… So funny okay! With the funky spellings and all… My God.

I started blogging in 2006 with my old blog; My Kunang-Kunang. Kunang-kunang means the yellow bugs – a kind of fireflies (I guess?) or insects that flash at nights in yellow. Why, is just because I loveeee yellow so much it’s my all-time and forever favourite color so I tagged it as the symbol of my space. I like yellow because it’s bright and royale. I always prefer something bright, lively and colorful. My next favourite color is brown, because brown and yellow make a complementary combination!

Back to My Kunang-kunang, the tagline was “It’s Just All About Me”. Haha. I was in University when I felt my life was so fun and interesting and I had a lot to talk about. I got crazy bunch of friends, I started driving, I learnt new things, I met new people and not to forget; I studied hard too (err, are you sure, self? hahaha). That’s when I thought of blogging. The writing wasn’t consistent but continued for a few good years.

However, it was not a solid 11 years. I once stopped blogging at all for quite long. Family was expanding, errands were multiplying, I couldn’t make time and plus, an inner conflict that stopped me from exposing personal stories or thoughts for whatever paranoid reasons. Nevertheless, I never stopped thinking to write and write again. There were actually a few times I attempted to re-blog but I just didn’t get the momentum to get in gear. So again and again I wrote a few lines and left it unfinished. And this is what I just found in a folder in my laptop :

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Haha….My ‘attempts’ to come back – once in 2013, and once in 2015. And believe me I have a lot more handwritten drafts in my note books I’d been wanting to type and publish, to type and publish, but it just didn’t happen. It’s such a struggle that I believed there are people out there who understand this in one way or another, maybe not in blogging but in anything else. Or maybe it’s just about time?

Because finally, finally… After four confusing years, it all ended. I found my reasons, I eliminated my excuses and above all, I got my true inspiration. Now here I am, celebrating my 11 years anniversary as a blogger! It’s almost a year since I came back, I write constantly, I find solace and peace in what I do and I hope you too in any, anything that you endeavour. And at any milestones, on any remarkable dates; don’t forget to celebrate because memorably, that’s where it all started for a journey worth taking.

Till the next post,
SALZY

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A Little Daydream

READING PORT

A or B? Choose one you’d love to have as your port at home.

Me? I would go for B!! I love it so much I don’t even know what it’s called. Rattan gazebo, I guess? Normally we see that typical A swing right? B is quite rare to me and I love it more because it’s spacious, static and we can lie straight on it. Just ideal if it’s placed on the balcony for me to relax on a lazy weekend reading books, or blogging!

Reality is; my home balcony couldn’t even fit that thing. Haha. It’s hugeee and round, requires spacious open area. And plus, my family and I, we’re not balcony people. Well yes, it’s nice to hang out and enjoy the breeze on late afternoons but due to safety reason for the kids; balcony is always locked. I sometimes even forget to clean that area, hehe.

But it’s sooo cool to actually have one okay! I’m writing it on my wish list already, ahaks. Hoping for one day I will have a bigger house with bigger veranda. Or even a landscape? Am gonna set this thing first before anything else. Weeeee. Daydreaming doesn’t cost a cent anyway; it’s a waste not to. So, what are you daydreaming about today? Whatever that is, may all your dreams come true!

Till the next post,
SALZY

A Writer or a Quoter?

I was composing a blogpost when my husband came and sat beside me. I stopped typing and had a chit-chat with him.

Me: You remember yesterday we went to the kindy, the teacher reminded us to teach the kids at home?

Hubs: Yea..

Me: You heard she said about the reward in the hereafter and all.. That they want us to also gain rewards as well..

Hubs: Yea..

Me: It’s soo thoughtful, right? I gotta write it on my blog!

Hubs: *nodding cynically* Your blog is like a ‘copy-&-paste’ blog, right?

Me: What? No?

Hubs: Yea… You heard something, or you read something, you like it, then you post it on your blog. It is ‘copy & paste’.

Me: *jolted* Hey. No! I don’t copy-paste things. I write with my own words, I write from the heart, okay? If I read something or I heard something and I wanna put it on my blog, I would quote it. I’d put the name of the author or whoever said it or if I don’t know I’d still acknowledge it’s not from me. I won’t pretend that the bombastic words are mine? And sometimes I don’t even take things directly; I rephrase things but would still address the original ideas. It’s not copy-&-paste, hello?

Hubs: Oh, okay. So does that mean your blog is a ‘copy-&-paste-&-paste’ blog?

Whattt, again? Is that just how you rephrased your statement earlier?? With that, I went with “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” to the longest vocal cord in my throat!!!!

How dare he?? This guy really had no idea about this writing career! Come, onnnnn….!!

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But that short and sharp opinion left me thinking for a moment.

Maybe he’s right. Maybe what he said was true. Maybe yes. I read something, I hear something, I like it, and I park it here. Add my comment, publish. In short, it’s copy-&-paste-&-paste. In fact now now I’m copying and pasting what he said.’

Hahahhahahaha! Like seriously! Okayyy…. Now it’s digested.

So yes, really. Actually, when I was about to start blogging again, in my mind was all about the things that I read from my books that I wanna share with people. It’s a lot of new things that I get to know from reading but I didn’t have a medium to exude them. I don’t have a book club and I don’t prefer social media. So I thought blogging is the best idea for this and this has become my main purpose and I’m happy with that.

But this comment from Mr. Sarcastic makes me realize that whatever it is, it’s not original. Maybe, 50% of the content of this blog is all from others and I’m just the ‘presenter’. Out of nowhere, my ears were suddenly echoed of the advice from my English lecturer when I was in Uni. This is what she said when students loved to overuse quoting-technique in essays because obviously it’s easy. She said; “This is your essay. You sign off your name. If you’re quoting so many other sources then the essay won’t belong to you anymore. And this makes you not a “writer”, but a “quoter”.

God bless my teacher. After years of leaving school, her words are still relevant and beneficial much. Hence, a writer or a quoter? Wait, let’s now take a look from the eyes of a reader. Let me slot in a bit of a book-review, shall I?

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It’s a book by Robin Sharma titled ‘Who Will Cry When You Die?’ – A collection of thoughts on life lessons in helping people to live great lives. I loveee the book so much because it’s so meaningful, it’s packed of light advices yet very significant and deep.

Buttt….there’s one thing that’s kinda disturbing throughout my reading which is – QUOTES. There were like tooooo many quotes from so many people included in it. I noticed that and wondering why is this like a quote book?? Until I reached the part that he said in all his books, he loves to use quotations from the world great thinkers because a quote contains a wealth of wisdoms in a single line. Nahhh then only I got it – he likes quotes, so he quotes quotations in his books. Okay.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s good, it’s very much inspiring but as a reader, when I pick a book especially from a particular author, I’d expect to dig as much original thoughts from the writer him/herself, not others. Hence to me albeit how good the book is, that too many quotes scratched one star from the rating I could give. My two cents!

After alllll…… my point here is not to argue about whatever writing style one would wanna apply. I don’t mean quoting is not good it’s what I liked too and I do love quote books. What I come to think is, from the honest comment made by my husband, I now fathom out that to grow as a writer, through blogging or through any medium, the best is to try to produce as much thoughts that come from our own critical thinking. Make it the first of its kind other than just evolving from world existing ideas. You got me?

Hence again, a writer or a quoter? For now, just a casual blogger who will do whatever she likes. A mixture of both I guess, haha. Thank you Hubby for the constructive feedback on my dear blog though it’s quite cynical at first I hated you for 60 seconds! Along the way, it’s something that I’m taking note of for my own good in my current and future undertakings.

Till the next post,
SALZY

Toastmasters : Table Topics

Hello back, everyone. These are the examples of Table Topics that I collected from my Toastmasters meetings in office. We usually have 4-6 topics depending on the time allowed. Always when I get home, I will have another Toastmasters meeting on my own in front of the mirror, or with the kids as my audience. Hahaha. I will practice speaking about the topics I jotted down on the day as if it were me who took that shot.

Imagine you’re the one who’s going to speak about one of these topics spontaneously.
For 2 minutes, what are you gonna talk about?

Theme : FORTUNE COOKIE | Word of the Day : LUCK

1) There’s always rainbow after the rain.
2) When one door closes, another door opens.
3) Don’t be pushed by your problems; be led by your dreams.
4) Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.
5) The beauty of your past belongs to the past.

Theme : MIND POWER | Word of the Day : CONFIDENCE

1) Third eye
2) Negative thoughts
3) Simplicity
4) Spirituality
5) Imagination
6) Consistency

Theme : LIGHT | Word of the Day : BRIGHTNESS

1) What would you do if there’s no electricity at night?
2) How do you celebrate the Festival of Lights?
3) There’s always light at the end of the tunnel.
4) Thomas Edison is the inventor of light-bulb. What is your favourite invention?

Theme : SPORTS / GAMES | Word of the Day : –

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Photo Source : All Google

Okay, enough of four sets and there are plenty more you can find online. In my record, I have done about four or five impromptu speech so far – still a very low effort, I gotta do more going forward.

Hurm yeah… Don’t just say it, self. Walk the talk!

Till the next post,
SALZY

Toastmasters : Impromptu Speech is Killing!

You have no idea what’s gonna come out. You go to the front, take a random pick, look what’s written on it, face the audience and there you go! Two minutes – TALK!

help

Photo : Google

That’s how it is; the Table Topic session in every Toastmasters meeting. Scary as it sounds? Of courseee… It’s an impromptu speech, okay. You’re not prepared with anything. Like I said, it’s killing!

This is usually the first agenda of the meeting and knowing this, the moment I entered the meeting room, I would get butterflies in my tummy. It is volunteer-based but sometimes when there’s really nobody wanna raise their hands; the Table Topic Master will just point to anybody and if it’s YOUUUUUU. Hahhh…. Gotcha! Hahaha

That extreme feeling is usually for a first-timer. The more frequent you do this; you won’t actually have that stage-fright as bad as your first time. I can vouch this because that’s what I experienced too. I’m still scared now and still not very confident but I believe, I’m better now in that nervous department comparing to the early days.

So what’s so scary about it actually? Honestly to me, the most nerve-wracking part is that if I don’t understand the thing at all. I mean, if the vocab written has never been in my diction, how?? My God! What do I do thennn? Because the format can be vary. Sometimes it can be like a question for us to answer, sometimes a picture of something, it can also be a collection of idioms. Yea, idiom is tricky. It’d be funny if the thing is well-known by everyone but you. Huwarrr… Luckily this has never happened to me so far. Please don’tttt…!!

Most times, things sound much worse than they actually are. Now, what’s not scary about impromptu speech? Actually they say; you can talk about anything! Anything at all. Yes, there’s no rule on the content of your speech. If you don’t understand it fully or you just have no idea to talk about that particular topic, we can just divert the topic to anything related, anything on our mind.

For example, your pick goes like this –

Malaysia has reached 60 years of independence. What do you think makes Malaysia an independent country?

Urghhh…Suddenly you gotta be historical and factual. Worse if you’re not a patriotic citizen. Hahaha. So, what can you do? You can actually divert the topic but still related to the word “independence”. Why not talk about yourself as an independent person! Talking about yourself is the easiest thing you can do and in fact, it’s quite impactful. I mean, pick a strong point about yourself that you can share with the audience and believed, many can relate personally.

You can start like this –

“Yes, Malaysia is an independent country we all know but the question is, are we all independent enough? Like me, ……”

There you go with bla bla bla. Make sense?

And that’s what actually Table Topic is. It’s not really formal and the evaluation won’t be so critical. The whole purpose is to urgeeee to you take the challenge and just do it! And after all, it’s only two minutes guys! Two minutes is fast, trust me. After you have passed the challenge – well done or not so well done – I tell you, you will have this feeling of accomplishment that you did it!

Have you ever heard this –

“We more often regret those things which we do not do than those which we do.”

This is true enough to me. Every time when the Table Topic session was running, I must have these contemplating feelings playing on my mind –

“Should I?…. Should not?”
“Go?…… No?”
“This time?….. Next time?”

And while I was still fighting my fear alone in my seat; the session ended, six people have taken their shots and all the picks have been revealed. And me?? Left behind with a little regret cause I’ve been defeated by my coward self! Loooooooser!!

Ahhh…. I believe each of us has our own bucket list of things that we’ve been considering to do in life. We contemplate every day, we contemplate for years. Let’s not waste time. As long as it won’t compromise our faith and religion, do give ourselves a try because know that we have nothing to lose. Have your purpose, know why you do what you gotta do, and GO!

As for this speaking thingy, this is still my current constant battle that I’m struggling to overcome but now I know that above all, impromptu speech is NOT killing at all.

If you’d like to know the kind of topics that we have in our Toastmasters meetings, click here.

Till the next post,
SALZY

I Want To Remind Myself

13th October 2017 marks 8 years anniversary of our love relationship. On the same day itself, my husband went for his company’s Annual Dinner event and brought home a lucky draw! Since when he became so lucky? Haha. It’s a Free Lunch Buffet Voucher for 2 pax @ Pullman Putrajaya Lakeside B’s Restaurant. Yeay… We consider this as our anniversary gift, then. Alhamdulillah.

pullman

Today we set to utilize the voucher. Didn’t wanna delay the pleasure and also to celebrate our son’s birthday which was two days ago. Actually, I’d been planning to organize a birthday party for him since early of this year. I’d been saving money, outlining the stuff and listing to-do’s for the event. It’s one of my important agendas for 2017 because we haven’t done any parties for him before. We did one for Dhany but none for Ayash. It’s not that it’s really a must for us do party for every birthday, but once in a while would be nice, right?

Alassss, my plan turned to no avail. Due to? Budget constraint. Haha. This year our financial goes on a roller coaster ride. I thought this is the year that we could save more for more big things upcoming. But it turns out to be just a funny thought. So many more unexpected things came rolling into our pockets and rolled out loaded. At this time, we’re just so broke! Huwarghhh…

And so I cancelled my plan to organize the birthday party for Errasy. We just couldn’t make it, baby. But with this free voucher that dropped from the sky just in time, we seized it for a little celebration with our little family.

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The cakes! Haha…call it a “DIY”. As long as there are candles on it, it is a birthday cake! What a cheapskate parents we are…haha. ‘Desperate time calls for desperate measures’ so mind us okay. Creative mom I am. Lol. Happy 3rd Birthday my baby Errasy! We loveeee you.

We spent two hours indulging the foods and later sightseeing around the hotel area and went home with happy tummies. Free meals are always extra delicious, right? Hehe. Thank you Allah for today and I’m taking some time now for a gratitude moment.

At this moment, I want to remind myself that even in time that we can call ‘hard times’ like this, we still have the opportunity to have fancy meals at a lavish place.

I want to remind myself that at the time we thought we couldn’t spare any money for self-reward like always, a lucky draw decided to reward us with something of our favourites (buffet dine).

I want to remind myself that my plan was unsuccessful but it’s replaced with something more meaningful.

I want to remind myself to be thankful with whatever I got and not whine over insufficiency.

I want to remind myself to be grateful and Allah will increase.

I want to remind myself that with every hardship comes ease.

I want to remind myself to not be hopeless because The help is near.

I want to remind myself that keeping faith in hard times is most rewarding.

I want to remind myself that despite all these we’re still blessed, we’re always blessed.

Things I’ve known so well but at this moment, I just want to remind myself.

Alhamdulillah ‘ala kulli hal.

family

Till the next post,
SALZY