Whimsical Avocados

Avocados are the most capricious fruits around. In addition to being pricey, of course. I find it hard to judge when they are really ripe. I press on this side, it feels ripe. I prick the other side, it does not feel ripe! And sometimes, they turn bad so quickly!

I usually leave them to ripen in the following two ways.

1. Wrap in newspaper and to place in a drawer. I tried this a few days ago. It works well. I left two medium sized avocados in the drawer this way. When I took them out, they were just rightly ripe. The skin was greenish-brown. The skin peels off easily. The flesh was greenish yellow. And yes, heavenly smell! After that, I kept them in the fridge to try and keep the freshness.

2. Place in a sack of raw rice. This trick works really well. All too well for me. If you let it pass by just one day, you will find your avocados in a sad sluggish state.

Anyway, I think the main thing is not to forget about them. Which ever method is used, if you do not check the avocados every now and then, you will miss the right time to eat them. They are such delicious fruits, and the effort is so much worth it.

And the best way to eat them is the simplest way: Lightly sprinkle some sugar on them. *Yum*

Marriage and I

wedding proposal

No, I am not married. Neither am I getting married. At least not yet. But I am in that phase in my life where people keep asking me when the ‘big’ event will happen. It is crazy sometimes. The ‘M’ word has to pop up in almost every conversation: family, friends, neighbours, colleagues. It is as if there’s a sign written on my forehead, and as soon as you see my face, that is the first thing you notice! 😦

I know it seems like it is high time it happens to me. I am 26 years old. I have a job I like. I am pretty responsible. I manage OK in the kitchen. I can handle my own. But if it isn’t happening, it just is not! And even if it never happens, it is no big a deal!

I believe in destiny: whatever has been preordained for me will happen, whether I want it or not. I still need to point out that I have nothing against marriage. It is an institution that I respect. It is something that I want to experience for myself. I want the experience to be a beautiful and fulfilling adventure. 🙂 I do not wish to get married just for the sake of getting married, just so people will stop pestering me, just because my age is right or whatever.

Writing this takes me back to when I was 16/17. I used to keep a personal diary then. In case you are wondering, I have burnt it a long time ago. 🙂 Anyway, back then, I wrote in that diary the stuffs I would do when my studies will be over. Marriage was among those stuffs. Admittedly, I had crazy romantic notions then that I do not harbor anymore. It remains though that it is something that I do want. In the years that have passed since, I have learnt and seen for myself that I may sit and spend hours planning my life away, but God has a plan of his own as well. I pray with all my heart that what He has in store for me is far better than I expect. 🙂 {Ameen}

Actually, I honestly believe that when the time is really right, everything else will fall into place. The right guy. The right place. The right situation. Everything will feel just that. Right. It will not matter that I prefer someone who is tall or who works in that particular field. It will not matter where he lives or if he talks funny. 🙂 I do not however have the capacity to say when the time will be right. Only God holds that information and until He decides to let me know about it, I request everyone to just be patient. 😉 Myself included.

Besides, marriage is not everything. There are so many single women out there who lead a perfectly good and happy life. So what if I end up being one of them? I will be fine. 🙂 I do not need a ring around my finger to complete the person I am. I absolutely will not be like those women who need a man to be happy. If being unmarried is the best state for me to be, so be it. I will certainly not let myself be disheartened or be depressed. Last I heard, being single is not a deadly disease now, is it? Better be single and happy, than being unhappy ever after!

Success comes with Hard Work

I find it baffling how some people forget, or choose not to acknowledge, that success comes with hard work. Some of the reasons for that forgetfulness are perhaps envy, jealousy, wanting more than the other person or not wishing that the other person has more.

It has been said over and over again that when a person has a goal they want to reach, or a dream they wish to come true, all they need are motivation, discipline, hard work, a little bit of luck and the will not to give up when faced with failure and to keep going until the end result is to satisfaction.

All I want to say to those people is that whoever they see building a big, beautiful and cozy home, or driving an Italian car, or wearing designer clothes, remember that they are able to do  all these things because they have worked hard for it! Remember some of those successful people spent 18 to 20 years of their life studying: late nights, tests, exams, stress. Remember that those people invested and took risks. Remember those parents who give everything to their children so the latter can achieve what they themselves only dreamed of. Nothing happened by magic.

Instead of wallowing in self-pity, wake up and at least try to make something for yourself. Instead of envying others for their success, be thankful for what you have and always wish the best for yourself and others!

Dream Big. Work Hard.

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What’s In My Handbag

handbag

Are guys really all that puzzled about what could be present in a girl’s handbag? Why do girls have to carry around a handbag when they go out? And why, the big handbag just to go to work or the mall?

It is not all that mysterious actually. We carry the Essentials, which include: wallet (money, debit cards, tons of contact cards, passport-size photos), Mobile phone, Perfume, Tissues (wet and dry ones), Comb/Hairbrush, Make-up kit (which may comprise of the face powder, Kohl, mascara, lipstick), moisturising cream (for dry hands), sanitary pad (at least one), an umbrella, sunglasses, reading glasses, a little notepad and some pens. If the handbag is big enough, maybe a book or a magazine can also find its place in there. 😉

It is perhaps not necessary to bring along all these stuffs with us when going out, but girls/women like to be prepared. She could spill some soda on her clothes or need pen and paper to note down something important! and everything she needs is just hanging there on her shoulder. 🙂

 

 

No Man is an Island

We all come into this world alone and we will leave it alone as well. But in between, we need others to accompany us along the way. Not everything in life is easy. Obstacles come in various forms and can sometimes knock us off. How can we manage all this alone? No human being is self-sufficient. We all rely onto one another.

networking

There are times that I find it hard to ask for help or assistance in something that I want to achieve/do. Even small things. So much so, that if I really cannot do it on my own, I give up. I do that even knowing that I am the only one at loss. Why is it hard to reach out to others and ask for help or advice? Ego? Is that goal too personal that I do not want to share? Afraid of what the other person will think or say? I do not want to hear ‘you got there or did that cause I ‘helped’? May be it is a little bit of all that.

But yeah, no man is an island. It is all right to ask or accept a helping hand de temps en temps. If you cannot do something, surely someone else out there can. 🙂

One more point for me to work on. So I hope I will remember this post when I find myself in a situation and wants to give up. 😉

The Power of a *true* Smile

A smile. A simple curving of the lips or a teeth baring smile. It does not matter what kind of smile it is, it has a powerful impact.

A smile changes the most severe of faces.

A smile can stop someone’s tears from falling.

A smile beautifies a ‘thank you’.

A smile, along with a good morning, shows it is good to see one another.

A smile can say ‘I like you’.

A smile can say ‘I appreciate you’.

A special kind of smile can say ‘I love you’.

A smile can say ‘It may be hurting now, but you’ll be all right’.

A smile can say ‘Do not be afraid’.

A smile shows encouragement.

A smile shows complicity.

A smile makes you approachable.

A smile can get you a discount. 😉

All in all, a smile brings happiness, in yourself, and in others. So Smile! Not often, but ALWAYS! At yourself, at your mum, at your dad, at your brother, at your sister, at your neighbors, at your friends, at your colleagues, at people you do not know…Anywhere, Anytime baby! <Winks>

And isn’t it a little bit funny how even the smallest of smile is contagious? Smile at someone, and you’ll most probably get a smile back!

smile

The Prophet Muhammad [PBUH] said: “Do not abuse anyone, do not look down upon any good work, and when you speak to your brother, show him a cheerful face.”
[Sunan of Abu-Dawood, Hadith 1889]

Abdullaah ibn Haarith said: “I never came across a person who smiled as much as Prophet Muhammad [PBUH]. Prophet Muhammad [PBUH] regarded smiling to a brother as an act of charity.”
[Tirmidhi]

“Everytime you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” 
― Mother Teresa

“Nothing shakes the smiling heart.” 
―Santosh Kalwar, I am Dead Man Alive

Surrounding myself with good people

Throughout my life, I have tried to surround myself with good people. People who I feel great with, people who inspire me to be good myself. I am eternally grateful to God for giving me an amazing family. Then come those I have chosen for myself. Those people are my closest friends. There ain’t so many but they are for keeps. I am also very grateful to have them by my side.

It is important for anyone to be surrounded with good people. People who are happy when you have achieved something great, people who help you achieve great things, people who ain’t afraid to tell you that you are doing a mistake, people who will not use you, people you can be happy and sad with. The list goes on.

Unfortunately, bad people exist as well. And I think, whether I wish it or not, they will end up, even for a brief moment, being in my life too. I do not always immediately recognise them but eventually, they show their real colors and fortunately, you can goodbye to them. But what about those I cannot completely remove from my life? Someone I am related to? I am more referring to the ‘extended’ family here. Like uncles, aunts, cousins.

This is a tough question for myself as I cannot possibly think about severing the blood relationship. Family is sacred for me. I just love to see families where the bond is so strong, it  is unbreakable. A family where everyone looks out for each other.

Thus, to answer this question, so far, all I can say is that I have to continue to strive to make things better. And pray. And keep reminding myself to do. Also, to remind me, not to ever, not ever, take the good people in my life for granted.

1st Yoga Class

This evening I got to experience something new and wanted to note it down here. One more reason to do so is because it is something I thought I would never try. Yoga.

So today I went to my first yoga class. It is included in the package offered at the gym. I was never really that interested. But hey, ‘Why not?!’. I must say I was pleasantly surprised. The class has such a relaxed atmosphere. What struck me the most is the Silence. Not the heavy kind, just the ‘tranquil’ kind. It did me good. I could just feel the tension leaving my shoulders. I was a bit apprehensive at the beginning. I imagine the complicated postures I’ll have to endure. However, with the correct guidance from the instructor, it was pretty smooth. 😉

Some of the postures I have tried:

The Bridge:

The Warrior:

The Shoulder Stand: By far, the hardest!

Anyway, it was a good first time. I don’t really know when my next class will be. Thing is, this class starts early and I don’t usually finish work at that time. 😦 I do want to attend again. Let’s hope that I can work something out! 😉

My favorite Pair of Jeans

I believe every girl has her favorite pair of jeans. One she wears irrespective of whether she looks good or not in it. It is all about how she feels wearing it. Happy Days. Crappy Days. Normal Days. Rainy Days. She just loves the softness of the fabric against her skin. And she thinks it can fit with everything perfectly. 🙂 High heels. Flats. Tops. Ts. Little dresses. As with everything, it grows old but no matter how many times she’ll take out worn-out clothes from the closet, this favorite pair, even if faded, will always have its place back. 😉

Grammar. A Lost Art?

Is grammar gradually losing its importance? Is spelling following too?

Sometimes I find it shocking to find so many grammatical and spelling mistakes in what people write. Not just in letters, emails or text messages. You can even find them in online newspapers (the only kind I read these days).

I know we all use short-hand, especially when chatting and sending text messages. But is using it too much causing us to start neglecting grammar and spelling? I would think yes and in my opinion, it is a bad thing and that, irrespective of language.

Can you imagine there are people who hesitate or do not even know the difference between ‘their’ and ‘there’, ‘its’ and ‘it’s’? Or when to use apostrophe? Or how to use commas? Seriously?! This is so basic! And what I hate the most, is when someone write in phonetic short-hand. Like ‘Zis’ or ‘dis’ for ‘this’, ‘Z’ for ‘the’ and the list is very long.

Teenagers and those under 25 are the ones who use this way of writing most of the time. It drives me nuts to read their texts or when I chat to them. It is almost alien! And I am pretty sure that sometimes they really do not know how to write certain words and they just go with the phonetics. How many teenagers actually read books nowadays? I have been to the library the other day and there were mostly adults there. Yeah, books can be obtained online too. However, I strongly doubt it that they would bother to read a whole book in soft copy.

I am not saying grammar and spelling should be perfect all the time. Sometimes mistakes can slip in. It is forgivable. But writing like that all the time on purpose? NO! NO! NO!

I, for one, tend to avoid this as far as possible now. I really do not want to be among those who send an e-mail to the boss writing ‘u’ instead of ‘you’ or ‘Deer Sir/Madam’ instead of ‘Dear Sir/Madam’.