11 Dec 2016

My year-long degree programme has finally come to an end. I just had my last paper on Friday. It was a relief to be able to finally completed everything. Although the results won’t be out in a few weeks, but I am pretty positive I would be able to pass through! This year alone, I had 10 exams. So I no longer fear exam like I used to.

Some (a friend was thinking of taking another degree) think that it is easy to take up another degree. It was never easy to juggle between work and your study. And do not forget – you have own life too! Sometimes, you have assignments due or exam while you have an life crisis to deal with! I do not recommend taking another degree (the keyword is another) if you could. Not only you have to devote your time to attend class, you have to dedicate your nights and weekends for classes etc. Many people do not want to sacrifice that.

My next agenda would be having a good rest and enjoy life! I wasn’t having a good rest before I start my degree programme. I was worried about my career progression. But now, I am in a better position and I can relax for a couple of years before I start making plan about my career again. My idea of “enjoy” is to watch a tv series (I have a full set of ’24’ DVDs to be watch!), read books (I haven’t been reading much this year as I was busy, busy, busy!) and write/blog more! A colleague asked me last week why I didn’t want to get more active. Oh well, I believe everyone have their own version of enjoyment. Doing more brisk walking is in my agenda next year as I do want to be more healthy. But it doesn’t mean I have to start signing up for marathon run. Getting active is always beneficial for one’s health but not everyone can do it. So I rather start with brisk walking and go slow. I don’t go to gym either because I simply don’t like the idea of having to bath after the gym activities. haha. I am weird but I hate that feeling!

Other than that, of course I do want to devote my time to minimalism. I must admit I haven’t been able to concentrate on the concept as much as I wanted to this year. Being busy means I make very instant and careless buying decision. Buying things is probably one of the way I associated with emotions like stress, angry etc. I am not buying as much as I used to. But I am still buying more than I am suppose to be! But anyway, with more free time, I am going to work on my thinking process and ensure that my thoughts are carefully think through. Buying decision would be considered more carefully. It always boils down to need or want. I will only purchase if it is a need. I would also spend more time organising and decluttering as our lunar new year is approaching too. Traditionally, I keep my room neat and tidy. Year after year, I hope that my room would be less cluttered and I am working to make it like the zen kind of room. Totally minimal.

A couple of random stuffs before I sign off!

I was at Tokyu Hands yesterday…. Naturally, I bought a new pen!

c0693ca9-efd9-4feb-9be9-e72d966eea38_zps1fhekvsi

Oops, yes I need to really work on this. No pen, no pen, no pen. But anyway I bought a Pentel EnerGel. It was limited edition – inspired by cat? I wasn’t a big fan of cat but I couldn’t resist limited edition and beautiful pens. Unlike Zebra’s Sarasa clip, for other brands, usually I would buy one or two. I had a opportunity to write an Pentel pen when someone passed me the pen to fill up a form. It writes very well. I wonder if I would ditch my love for Sarasa clip 😛

An update on my Matt & Nat bag. After one year plus of using, I am still quite pleased with it.

The model I have is Mitsuko in navy.

33215f07-7e2c-4634-bcab-7f3ea29f93b3_zps3wj8yon3

After one year plus of usage, I don’t see any wear and tear which I normally would in a PU bag. Although this bag is Made in China, but it is much more higher in quality as compared to those cheaper bags. The bag look very classy and doesn’t look like a non-leather bag. The bag itself is extremely light and doesn’t hurt your shoulder. The only problem I have is that the bag doesn’t fit A4 file that well. Hence, I don’t carry it when I need to carry A4 file. However, it is still a good size!  Overall, I would recommend Matt & Nat bag. However, last year, I have blogged about their service – if you read their Facebook, they have terrible customer service (I guess due to the lack of staffs) and terrible shipping problem. I am disappointed that their service hasn’t improve much. A few months back, I tried emailing them but they never get back to me. I purchased this bag from ASOS. Since I don’t intend to purchase a new bag, I cannot comment on their shipping. But hopefully, by the time I am ready to purchase a new one, their shipping would be much better. I am tempted to get the mini mitsuko as it would be super cute for holiday.

A few months back, I discovered another brand, Love Moschino, through my ex-colleague. I purchased an bucket bag 2-3 weeks back. I am super happy with the purchase as it is not very expensive (less than SGD200) and it is from Italy. I am also tempted to get a smaller bag 😛 but of course, considering that I have so much bags, I will not be purchasing.

July Stationary Haul – Tokyu Hands & Miniso

I decided to visit Tokyu Hands today as I have been wanting to get a new notebook!

 photo DEF5B501-3EDA-4287-8A05-631E9A9A639D_zpszqsz6his.jpg

Before I could get into Tokyu Hands, I was greeted by a new Miniso outlet.
I wouldn’t say  that I am a huge fan of them. Ya, their stuffs are really cheaper. But they are all Made In China. The main problem is their packaging seems so rip off from other brands. But then, they do have a wide range of interesting products. They are a little bit like Daiso… cos they have everything from stationary to cosmetic products 🙂

So I saw they have this reasonable priced fountain pens at SGD3.00 so I grabbed without thinking. It comes with the refill cartridge too!!! They have white and black too. For fountain pen, I tried not to buy black or white as they seems boring. And I have an major obsession with pens. I believe everyone around me realised that. And the green colour is just the perfect colour.

Then, I saw these cheap soft cover notebooks with nautical prints. So…… I grabbed all the available designs without thinking. Each set turned out to be SGD3.00. They have decent plain hardcover ones too in shade like pink, yellow etc! But knowing the paper quality of these cheap notebooks, I decided to give them a miss. I haven’t start using them yet. Keeping it for vacation 🙂 But I won’t be expecting too much.

Then I quickly paid and left the shop before any more damages could be done.

So, Tokyu Hands also restocked the Anello bags!

 photo DC4B9692-C662-4EDC-9649-E2D7E138BFE8_zpsd3a3m3h5.jpg

I saw at least 5 people buying it when I was walking around the store. I was indeed tempted to get the small size boston bag. But I don’t feel like spending 50bucks on a bag yet. Beside, they still do not have wine colour in that design. I have been waiting forever for Anello to release that. Although the wine backpack is tempting too, but I know that I do not need any backpack at all!

I moved on to the stationary sections and grabbed the campus notebook.

(I must be too excited to see the campus notebook as I had a stomachache!)

After thinking and thinking, I decided to get the 5-packs as they have the limited design (It is the same price at SGD9.90!!) and a pack of loose paper. At the counter, I was given 2 free ones! Yay for freebie! 🙂

I also get the new Uni Signo pens as they have new limited design with Hello Kitty and My Melody. Since I now preferred Sarasa clip than any other pens, I decided to get only one design for each character.

 photo 127AA396-0188-4959-BB77-33D9F714C26E_zpsthpqhqtq.jpg

I must say I really love the campus notebooks. I started with the free ones as I didn’t want to open the shrink-wrapped ones. It write really well using my Sarasa Clip (of course!). I feel like throwing away all my other notebooks at home. HAHAHA!

My favourite pen

I never had a particular brand or model of pen that I really love… I just use whatever that I buy. And last year, I went into  this “crazy-pen-buying” mode. I have been resisting buying pens every other days haha (:

So…. after using a few pens, I found my love ❤

It is….

ZEBRA SARASA CLIP!
f9994760-0420-464c-92d4-bbf7f6c4c4eb_zpsbqs28najThis is just one of the many that I have purchased. (:

I take a lot of notes and loves writing in my free time. And I have a lot of exams this year. I have at least 8th exams so far. Going into an exam hall with a good pen is really important!!

Zebra Sarasa clip just write so well. I don’t know if you have that experience – when you are using a pen, then suddenly it stop writing… the ink don’t flow or something. The ink has not run out. so…. It is irritating! I never have problem with Zebra Sarasa clip!

I have used Uniball Signo RT. As compare, I like Zebra Sarasa clip better!

Another reason why I like Zebra Sarasa clip is also because of the design! They release new designs every now and then. Beside the london series which I have just brought, I also have the snoopy series, the chupa chups series & the french casual series. I skipped the florist series & Kumamon series as I don’t really like the design! But if you do see something you like at your local stationary shop, just buy as its limited edition 😀

 

 

 

Weekly roundup – 1 to 18 Oct

Wow, It has been a long time. I have been busy with my holiday plan and re-organisation/packing of my room/wardrobe.

So firstly, I went Hanoi, Vietnam for a few days. It was not quite fun. I personally did not enjoy it… But its a good place to have coffee at different cafes (The coffee there is much cheaper than our local cafe!) and just relax like reading a book. I couldn’t really concentrate as I was with someone…. I could only be productive when I am alone. So usually I would pop by a local Starbucks on a Saturday morning with a notebook and pen….alone… And I am happily writing away! I need to do this more often though… Hanoi is not exactly a shopping heaven. But you can get good clothes there. I choose to spend a bit more to shop for Vietnam/Hanoi designer clothes (It is not that expensive as pricing is similar to Topshop) as I feel that I need to support SEA designers.  For vegan/vegetarian, I didn’t find a big problem to get food as good restaurant usually have some options but…. if you are strictly on no-onion, it is very tough as most local don’t speak English. I wish everyone would just stop putting onion into veggie stuffs. One thing I was worried about…is the washroom. I read that they can be very dirty. But the restaurant/Hotels ones are clean. I just pop into any hotels that I came across when I need the toilet. My friend say the receptionist was staring… But who cares?

Organisation/Planning
I am going to skip the minimalism part as it is not something that I have been doing! I am going to try to go back into focus on that for the next couple of weeks. But… here’s some other stuffs…
So my room was in a mess (I kept them tidy again yesterday) when I left for Hanoi and being busy when I return, I kept it like this for a few days. When my room is messy, my mind is somehow cluttered. So I didn’t use my planner. And, I don’t know… I just feel so light when I am not bringing it with me.

Let me explain a bit… I am trying to cut down (okay, you can call this minimalism :P) the number of stuffs I bring to work. When I changed my phone, I did the exact opposite things – 1) Unlike previously, I updated myself to a data plan. 2) I purchased an more-expansive-than-usual screen protector. 3) I purchased a shiny new case. So I feel like my phone is much more premium than ever. As a result, I uses it more often. So, the reminder app which I don’t find it very useful previously is now very useful! With the new iPhone, I didn’t have to bring my other devices – iPad Mini. So bag size is not really an issue. How is this linked to my planner? Of course it it. I now find my planner very bulky and sometimes I really want to bring a small bag. Oh well, this problem is really very temporary as I ordered an Frankie Diary for 2016. I think I am going to use that when I goes out/to work for 2016. But in the meantime, I will be bringing ones of my fauxdori to be the connecting planner. Although it feels like it will, but I hope I will NOT be reducing efficiency and productivity. My now-I-feel-bulky-but-it-is-expensive planner from Plum Paper will still be used as the main planner but I am leaving it at home. Now I need to write more 🙂 when transferring stuffs. I also came up with a whole new system. It is kinda inspired by the Day Designer which is btw way too expensive. I thought of shipping to my US-based shopping agent and get them to ship to Singapore with a cheaper shipping (shipping direct from Day Designer will cost $49!) But it cost $13 to ship in US itself which is…..EXPENSIVE. I got the Top Three idea from them and incorporated it into my planning. So I will concentrate on the Top Three when I am away from home. This is actually great as I do not need to bring my bulky planner. The rest of the tasks (on a normal workday) can only be completed when I am at home. I would bring a lighter planner (one of the fauxdori for now) and I don’t have many spaces to write anyway!

Shopping
It didn’t go well for the past 2 weeks or so! I started buying again. Yes, bad. 
But this time, it is because I wanted to change my style. I never had a style. I wear whatever I am comfortable with. But I think its time for me to dress up.  I discovered a style called “Preppy”. Well, I am not really going to wear in preppy style. But I think it would be something very similar.

Firstly, I need to get more basic clothes like polo, shirts etc. I used to think polo are so formal. It is casual formal. But it is too formal. I am more comfortable with graphic tee. But I think I need to wear more. So I ended with 3! (I’ll talk more about it below).  I did like basic. But I feel like I needed more. Good ones.

Then I somehow feel I need new bags. I am always looking for a new bag when I have a new purpose – a wedding to attend, a vacation etc! So it is now the perfect excuse for me to get one. But I did clear my wardrobe to eliminate a few bags that I no longer want. So my wardrobe should be more clean now. I am looking to eliminate some more tomorrow.

Finally, I started to get crazy about …. sailor stripe, anchors and sailboat!

Let’s recapped what I have purchased:
1) LL Bean
So I purchased two classic boat tote in different style. I always want classic boat tote. They are like so classic and useful. and it never goes out of fashion. The customised one is obviously more expensive as you get to design your own tote. But if you are on budget, the classic style is great too. I would write in more details in my next post (when I received it)
There was another discount (10% off) previously. I keep thinking about this for 3 hours but decided not to get. I already have 2 bags – although I would very much loves a zipped, medium and regular strap with a single letter initial, But I have enough for now! I wanted to get the S size but for the price differences of USD5, I feel that the small size is too small. As compare, Lands End have a smaller size that I am comfortable with. Which is why I purchased it next.

2) Lands End
Well, I am not familiar with LL Bean or Lands End so I decided to try them both. Lands End was having a promotion of 30% off from the regular item so I decided to order their version of tote. Their tote is not made in US but it has compartments and some say its seems stronger. Furthermore, it has sailor stripe! I ordered 2 polo on sales and opted to include a cute sailboat embroidery in one of the polo 🙂 I definitely love that option. I am aiming to get one of the shirts with the embroidery in future. One thing I hate is the annoying shipping… Ya, I wish they have free shipping for any amount.

3) Cases
In my last post or something, I mentioned I have purchased a new iPhone. I was going to go naked by having a slickwrap. But I got a bit carried away with buying cases. 
Well, I think I have enough and I need to stop purchasing more!!

SPECK
I read that their new transparent case has a new technology to prevent yellowing. Nobody is sure how true it is. But I decided to get one and try out for myself.

CASE MATE
I saw the promo for 25% off at snapchat so I couldn’t resist! Ordered the Karat case in Rose Gold at 7am when I wake up at the hotel…

DEVIA
Purchased this before my flight. I was attracted by the swarovski crystal elements. It made my iPhone look even more premium!

TAOBAO
Taobao and Aliexpress is a great place to get cheap cover/cases/screen protector.  I purchased only 3. (I used the word “only” as I would have 30 by now if it was the same person 2 years back :P)

4) AE
I was a fan of AE many years ago. But I kinda stop buying as I went to buy cheap clothes and fast fashion. Buying from AE was expensive as we need to go through a third party shipper. But I decided to get a new white polo from them as I always love their clothes – it’s always super soft and comfortable 🙂 I still have my clothes from many years ago. Now I found a cheaper way to shop so I am going to start buying from AE again. Well, once in a long while.

5) Merimies
I was doing a bit of bag shopping at Taobao. oops. Then I came across this little Thai brand. I was instantly attracted to it. I always wanted a TCSC kind of bags. No to TCSC as they uses REAL leather! Last year, I tried looking for an alternative in vegan leather but I couldn’t find one that I really like and they are expensive. I didn’t want to buy from those in Taobao as they look like they will break in a few uses. I was delighted to know that they ship worldwide! I was indecisive at first as they have too many choices. Plain, mix or stripe. I decided to go with stripe in size M. But it ran out of stock. I was asked to choose an alternative in the same price range. I decided to go bold and pick my recent favourite MINT colour.

6) Kikki K
Oh yes, I finally visited Kikki K again. (I visited a few times in the past but didn’t get anything as I wasn’t into stationaries back then!) Kikki K is officially my favourite store. I was there on a saturday afternoon. But the staffs there are very friendly and helpful. I walked around the small store several times as I was so excited about everything I saw. I was approached by the friendly staffs a couple of times even though the small store was busy 🙂 Maybe because I actually picked something up than just browsing. Anyway they asked me to join as a member when I was paying. I filled up a form but not sure how I am getting the details – probably by email? I hope I get some kind of discount coupon as I am hoping to find excuse to visit them again. I want all of their pens. Every single one.

Here’s what I purchased on saturday:

Stationaries in Mint and sail/anchor. I just couldn’t say no. I am keeping them for my cruise trip which I haven’t plan yet…. HAHA! I decided to pick up a elastic band for notebook as they could be so useful!
I do wanted to get their canvas planner. But I realise it wouldn’t be useful to me as its dated. I already have 2 planners for 2016! And I have 3 undated organisers. 2017 maybe!

Now, I am trying to curb my shopping now that I am back in full focus! I hope I could to stop buying for at least a month!

Day out
So yesterday I met up a friend and we visited Lady M.

I don’t like the space. It is too compact. They should remove the middle row and service is kinda slow.


My friend who is crazy about green tea influenced me to hate their green tea cake. But I will have to try again to really comment. The chocolate one (which look like a charcoal in the picture. But it’s a normal chocolate cake in real life) is rich and delicious.


This place isn’t known for coffee so I say their ice mocha taste all right. Just good enough for me to start my day officially….

Stylish Stationary

Stylish and beautiful stationaries just make you feel more inspired in planning and organisation!

Kate Spade New York

No need to introduce further! Kate Spade New York bags are always stylish, so is their stationaries from the Home goods section.

Kikki K

From cute to inspiring designs, this Swedish design have everything covered!

Typo

Who say stylish stationaries have to be expensive? Typo has many affordable price for stylish stationaries!

Poppin

Poppin is my dream stationary…. I will go for Pink, Pink, Pink! Maybe a bit of Mint too! I loves the minimal and simple concept. If only I didn’t have soon much pens at home!

Planner for 2016

Earlier this year I learnt that NOT having a planner is like you are missing something. I felt lost, disorganised and having major disruption to my life! So It is very important to have a planner to keep my life organised! It is NOT crazy to think about a planner for next year now even though it is only September! I am safe as I not only have a planner but I have 5! 

Customise Planner – Plum Paper Planner, Erin Condren
I am going to talk about Plum Paper Planner only as I only have experience with it. But the concept of EC is very similar.  I absolutely adore my Plum Paper Planner. It is useful and allow lots of space for writing. You can customise it by including your name, selecting the month to begin and decide on your layout. Want something even more special? PPP also is very flexible in adjusting the colour scheme. Just leave them a note in your order and they will do it for you without any charges. So you will have something really special! They have different add on which allow you have extra pages, more to-do etc!
Personally, I would say this is the planner if you are planning to plan out your activities day by day and writing extensively to-do is your kind of thing. However if you are not the kind of person who would write a lot of stuffs, then it might not be very worth it. The cost might be wasted if half the planner is filled. It is afterall not re-useable. The planner itself is rather heavy and bulky. So for people who don’t like bringing a big bag everyday, it should also be an important factor to consider. Other than that, it takes 3-4 weeks to process and the shipping isn’t exactly cheap due to the weight. But it is worth every cents!

For a cheaper option, you can consider personal planner. They allows you to customise your cover and choose the pages etc. If you have a cool design, you can upload and request them to print. So go wild on this. They ship worldwide for free. 

Frankie Diary 
I always want a Frankie Diary. I adore this magazine company. I buy their magazines once in awhile although not all the times.   The graphic they used in the diary are always illustrated and designed by illustrators. So its rather unique.  

They always ran out quickly so when I saw that it was available for pre-order, I jumped into buying one without seeing the inner page. I know it will not disappoint me. More information when I receive it! 

Filofax or similiar – Kikki K, LoveDoki
I never had a Filofax but they seems a bit too dull for my liking. A brighter version from Kikki K attracted me. But their time planner is always in leather. But this year, they made a nylon one called cute which is oh-so-cute. But I don’t need a forth planner or fifth one – if you count the one I had at work. I will get one in 2017! I will!

Another animal-friendly alternative is a china brand called LoveDoki. They comes in a variety of colours, shapes and material. They launched an canvas version which is so beautiful. But again, I do not need another planner. In fact, I have 3 such planners at home. They even have a English friendly website which anyone who don’t understand Chinese. But I prefer to order from the source at Taobao. If you are lucky like me who can understand the beautiful Chinese language, there are also a few other brands on Taobao which you can consider. I have compared 2 other brands against LoveDoki in my previous post.

Now here’s a very good advantage of using such planner. If you selected the leather material, it may last a good few years. If you choose cuter ones from Kikki K or LoveDoki, it may last you 2-3 years or more. So you are only getting the refill for the same planner. The good thing about selecting your one planner from the wide variety of China brands is that you can mix and match around. You can use the refill on the other brands. They always come in standard size of A6 or A5. I don’t know if they can be mix with Kikki K or Filofax. But I suspect they do. But anyway, you can get a one-hole puncher and adjust if you are not fussy about being very tidy. Other than that, you can also easily customise your planner according to what you want. Dividers, customise refill and accessories – such as pocket to store your washi tapes are always out there. You can also easily move the papers around so when you get sick of the planner. Buy a new one and use back the refill. No waste! This is the planner for you if you want to be free and be wild about what you can do…

Midori or fauxdori
No introduction needed. The advantages of this is very similar to Filofax and the alternative. But it is way more compact and you can take it with you on travel too. I uses my faxudori for traveling. I don’t buy the authentic cos they are leather. Wish they made something more animal-friendly!

There are again a wide variety of faxudori seller which I have posted in my previous post. You can again get a nice selection of colour! And mixing around the refill is easy too!

Muji Ball point pen

One of my favourite pens ran out of ink. It is an inexpensive ballpoint pen which I purchased from Muji.

I love this pen as it writes extremely smoothly. So far, there is none other pens that I am so pleased with.
There was never one moment that I have to write vigorously in order to let the ink to flow. And… it’s made in Japan!

Whenever I passed by Muji, I always go in and see if there is any stock of this. But they only have blue and red pen. When it comes to pen, I stubbornly prefer black ink. Anyway now that it has ran out, I am little sad. but since I have too much pens. I will not buy the replacement yet.