being a mom being pregnant

mommy is free

Do you guys hear that?

The sound of me screaming happily of freedom???

You know what that means, right…

I’ve stopped breastfeeding!!!!

I’m freeeee!!!

*does happy dance blows whistles and streamers sings with a marching band on top of a huge floral float*

Sorry Daniel, I really do love you, really. But man am I happy to have my boobs all to myself again after one whole year of sharing. Hehe.

It wasn’t a walk in the park though, the weaning process. A lot of tears and screaming by Daniel and mountains and mountains of guilt by me. The doctor said it wasn’t good to breastfeed while you are pregnant (can induce contractions), so he advised me to stop. I slowly weaned Daniel off by giving him yummier drinks and  distracted him everytime he wanted to breastfeed. Dean also helped A LOT by carrying him and walking him around  everytime he started throwing tantrums. The nights are the most difficult but Dean helped by putting Daniel to sleep without me in sight (if I’m there, he cries so loud) so I think after a while Daniel got used to it. Now he can just walk past my boobs and go Meh. Kinda hurts my feelings sometimes.

I hear a lot of stories about moms trying all sorts of ways to stop breastfeeding. Putting salt on their boobs, putting ginger there, putting lemon.. even plastering their boobs! I didn’t resort to any of that because the thought of putting ginger there makes me go Ew, but if it works for you, then by all means. For me, I talked to Daniel A LOT and explained to him that he is now going to only drink milk from the bottle. Whether or not he understood, only he and God knows. But it sure did help calm him down whenever he’s crying while I stroked his head gently.

If you ask me if I miss breastfeeding, I’d say not really. The leaking, the engorgements, the buying-bras-two-cups-bigger, the breastfeeding in public… not so fun for me. Every mom I meet lovessss breastfeeding and I totally respect that, but I’m just being honest that I like my freedom haha. Definitely can’t be poster child for breastfeeding, this woman. BUT I do agree that if you can breastfeed, please do so and sacrifice your freedom because your child needs your milk. The pahala in breastfeeding, Masyaallah! So I made sure that I at least breastfed Daniel for a year. Now that he has a lot of teeth, adios amigo.

What I do miss, though, is the bonding time with Daniel. So I make sure I bond with him through other ways like dancing around with him, or kissing him all over, or tickling him, or his personal favorite; singing to him. *voice of an angel, guys… clears throat*

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Daniel obviously loves bonding time with Mommy too!

Thank you for being such an understanding son and future big brother, my love.

P/S: Sorry if there’s too much boob talk here, peeps. But moms gotta know!

fashion and shopping headscarves living in KL pd daily working girl

city girl

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When I envisioned dUCk, I envision the city girl. The girl who has a ton of things to do but still wants to look put together all the time. The girl who is modern in thinking and is open-minded but wants to keep culture and heritage close to heart. The girl who is chic and sophisticated, confident and eloquent but still maintains her modesty. That is my dUCk girl, a proud wearer of the headscarf while she runs her everyday life like she owns the world.

So it was a no-brainer that we came up with the City Girl collection. I told the team I wanted the famous city skylines on a scarf and to pay tribute to where it all started, our beautiful city Kuala Lumpur was my obvious choice as the debut. The first batch completely sold out, and we were contemplating whether to do a restock or not. After reading emails from customers that they would love to get these as gifts or momentos for their overseas guests, I realised it was bigger than just dUCk. If we can promote our city and also our country through small things like these, that’s always a good thing!

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A cute illustration of D I stole from dUCk hehe.

So there will be a huge restock tomorrow on FV at 11 am. Know any city girl you love? This will be the perfect gift!

Wearing KL scarf from dUCk and sweater from Milktee, from FashionValet. Jeans from Forever 21, bag from Celine and heels from Giuseppe Zanotti.

media working girl

says.com

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What an honour it was for Dean and I to see this article from Says.com. Loved that we managed to represent the Malays on the list. Hope to see more in the future! Thank you so much for including us amongst these huge names in the industry. A motivation for us to work harder, indeed!

fashion and shopping pd daily working girl

long hiatus

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After a long hiatus from work to settle my domestic issues, I just had to return to the office because I missed it too much. Sent Daniel to my mom’s, went “ThanksMaLoveYou!” and buried my head in work for a few hours. As much as I love Daniel with all my heart, I needed to talk to other adults and touch some files instead of his small picture books. Felt so good to hold meetings and discuss work stuff with the team, and seeing their faces instead of the usual daily whatsapp messages (I am a very annoying boss, I won’t leave you alone teehee).

I knew exactly what I wanted to wear that morning; a blazer. Any blazer. Don’t care. Have been living in sweaters and T-shirts at home that I needed to feel all serious again. Haha. An all black ensemble isn’t really my thing so I had to break it up with a hint of print that I found in my batik top. I could’ve worn my usual pants but I’ve been wanting to wear this skirt. This is actually part of the baju kurung from Nora Danish for FashionValet collection. I especially love it because it gives the pareo feel without the actual show-leg. It has no slit so hijabis will loveeeee it and the drape at the front is just oh so feminine.

Btw,

NDFV LB NEWSLETTER FORMAT-1

The last day to enjoy this promotion is tomorrow (Sunday), so hurry and shop at FV!

Wearing top from Ruzz Gahara, skirt (part of this kurung) from Nora Danish for FashionValet, both from FashionValet. Blazer from Zara, shoes from Dior and scarf from a dUCk sample. 

being pregnant

boy or girl

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I told Dean I’m so sure this Baby No. 2 is a boy. (a) because the symptoms I’m having are very much similar to the symptoms with Daniel, (b) my tummy is so big and boys are bigger, a theory I made up myself of course, (c) Dean ate a lot of steak, and they say meat-eaters will produce boys, a theory I heard from non-medical people who I somehow felt know more than doctors, and (c) just because of Dean’s genes… 5 brothers, 2 nephews… their boy genes are just too strong.

I get to know the sex of Baby No. 2 at my next checkup and to be honest, I’m pretty nervous! A little part of me wants a girl to dress up in pretty clothes but I think a big part of me secretly wants another boy. Girls are after all more expensive and they grow up to want designer handbags and shoes and stuff. And then you’ve got to worry about the boys that come their way and all the secret dates they go on when they tell you they are going to “their best friend’s house to study”. Oh God… to have a little young me… would be a nightmare! If a girl turns out to be anything like me as a teen, I will be following her and waiting outside her best friend’s house with binoculars. And Dean will be next to me with a baseball bat, ready to smack the boy that picks her up. Nauzubillah! Hehe. Whoever has a lot of daughters, hats off to you guys, seriously!

I came across this baby gender prediction thingy and had a good laugh. If you’re pregnant, might wanna try them out for fun.

1) Highs and Lows
This one you can do just by looking south: if you’re carrying high, break out the pink. If your bump is low, you’re carrying a boy.

I don’t know, I’m just carrying heavy.

2) Be Still My Beating Heart
Next time your OB pulls out the Doppler to listen to baby’s heartbeat, ask her to tell you what the heart rate is. According to legend, 140+ beats per minute indicates a girl, and below 140 a boy.

My gynae would roll his eyes at me.

3) Sweet and Sour
Craving ice cream every single day? Some people believe this means it’s a girl. If you have to have salty or sour stuff, then it’s a boy.

*looks at the 5 packets of asam in my handbag*

4) Potty Time
This one’s a little out there. Pee in a cup (you’ve been doing it at all your prenatal appointments anyway, haven’t you?), mix a tablespoon of Drano in, and watch to see if it changes color. Green = girl, and blue = boy.

Ridiculous.

5) Unlocking the Mystery
This is one for a friend to try. Place a key in front of your preggo friend and ask her to pick it up. If she grabs it by the narrow part, she’s in for sugar and spice and all that. If she picks it up by the round part, it’s snips and snails.

What if I grabbed the keychain…

6) Spot On
If you’re breaking out like crazy, blame it on your girl babe. The belief goes that girls steal their mother’s beauty, hence, those annoying zits.

*looks in the mirror* I’m having a girl, guys. For sure.

7) Nice Ring to It
Pop off your wedding ring—if you still can!—and tie it to a string. Hang it over your belly. If it swings in a circle, a little guy’s in your future. If it goes back and forth, you’ve got a girl.

I just got dizzy to be honest.

8) Queasy Does It
Sick as a dog during the first trimester—or still? Signs indicate you’re having a girl. Little or no morning sickness points to a boy.

Boy.

Obviously we shouldn’t believe in the myths, but it’s all good fun guessing anyway! Guess I shall just wait for my next appointment to see. Pretty excited for it.

being a mom being a mrs lifestyle

my first maid lesson

I’ve been scrubbing showers, washing pots and changing poo all week long. Hence my time reduction on the blog, which I’m not happy about btw. I’ve done loads of laundry and have decided that Dean and Daniel only get 1 change of clothes a day. No more!

All this why, you ask?

Because that maid I told you I loved and you thought she was so funny with her silly emoticons… yeah she left me. *purses lips, clenches fist, books flight to Medan*

It’s all my fault, really. My mom and mil warned me that we shouldn’t let our maids go back home before their permit ends but Dean and I being all like oh-but-she-must-miss-her-kids-dearly, so we cleverly booked her a one week trip back home so she can be with her kids for Raya. I even bought her kids and her sister stuff and gave them money for school etc, and seeing my maid so happy made me so happy! Sometimes small things to us can mean the world to others, so it was all really humbling. I was so excited for her to be able to see her kids, I even lent her my suitcase! Like here here, take this gorgeous Samsonite luggage, let me help you secretly abandon me. *future maids now going to back with a paperbag, that’s it!*

A week went by and on the day she was supposed to come back, I get some sorry messages about how she can’t come back anymore because she needs to be with her kids bla bla bla. There were also some of her usual emoticons there so I knew it was really her. -___-”

Anyway, she has been messaging me to forgive her non-stop and I feel so mean that I haven’t replied because I simply do not know how to respond!! Like “Oh sureeee, no problem, don’t worry about it. Say hi to your kids!” All I could think about was how expensive my Samsonite suitcase was.

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Goodbye forever, suitcase. (Picture taken a while back)

So there you have it, Vivy, your first lesson with maids. Dean was nice though. He was all like “Don’t judge a person’s actions because you don’t know if you’re in that situation, you wouldn’t do the same.” I guess it’s tough to be away from your kids, and the one chance you get to see them, I can only imagine how heartbreaking it must be to say bye-bye again. Even though I’m annoyed at her for making my life difficult this past week, I am secretly happy for her that she can restart her life again with her new money and not have to leave her kids. But when I think about my Samsonite suitcase, that happiness slowly fades. Bahahhaha. Ok ok seriously, jokes aside, I wish her well because the whole time she worked for me, she seriously made my life stress-free.

There is hikmah in all this, I believe. One, I learn my lesson about trust and human beings. Two, having to take care of Daniel on my own has made me learn so much about him and the bonding time is priceless. Three, Dean has started washing the dishes. Four, I can walk half-naked around my house. Five, I get a new suitcase.

Ok now… if your baby eats Koko Krunch and leaves chocolate hand marks all over your cabinet, what type of Mr. Muscle do you use to clean that? Or should I just switch to Honey Stars? -__-”

#domesticissues

working girl

lunch partner

Working with or near to your husband is especially fun because you will always have a lunch partner. Unless of course you guys are the cool couple type who don’t flaunt it at work. I’m nowhere near that, what with my blowing kisses and “What do you mean you can’t lunch with me today?” exclaims in the office. It’s sickening really, ask the FV team. Haha.

So anyway, lunch topics are always random between Dean and I. One day we could be talking about Daniel’s future school (which we always disagree on) and one another day, we could be talking about how cool Harvey Specter is in Suits (going to make Dean wear suits everyday at work soon).

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Today’s lunch (well, actually…brunch) topic is on a statistic that Dean discovered which is 98% of businesses fail within the first 3 years. So it was a pretty intense lunch with lots of “smart talk”. When Dean gives me a stat, I believe him since he reads a lot and he remembers all these stuff. If I ever give you a stat, it’s most likely made up so yeah.

“Holy moly, that’s scary. What do you do if you know 98% of businesses fail??” I ask Dean.

“Well, you can open 100 businesses. 2 will survive,” his smartass answer.

But seriously, it’s very scary when you think about starting your own business isn’t it? I remember back in 2010, we had all the plans and it looks like a good idea (and thank God we’re almost 4 years now and going strong, thank you Allah swt) but still… nothing’s for sure and we were terrified! Dean and I look back now and we both agreed that in hindsight we probably wouldn’t have made it so far if it wasn’t for Proudduck and my online presence at the time. If I didn’t have a ready audience to announce the birth of FashionValet, we would’ve had to do it the more expensive way which is well… normal advertising. Which we had no money for at the time. We had to cut corners and ask for favours left right center to make it work. That’s why I tell a lot of people who ask for business advice to do their homework and map out their marketing strategy first. Who is your audience and how sure are you that your audience is even interested in your product? Is your product addressing a gap/problem in the market which people need or are you creating a whole new thing (which you will then have to convince people about)? How do you make your product different than the rest?

Until now, nothing is ever easy for us and the issues never stop; it’s always one after the other. So if you don’t have the drive and motivation to handle the stress, it’s very easy to fold and pack up.

Everyone finds motivation in different ways.

A motivation to always keep close to your heart is God. Anything can be said to you (like how I got the whole you-don’t-deserve-success remarks from people in the beginning), anything can be done to you, any competitor can set up shop even next to you, but if you’ve got Allah swt in your heart, you won’t be scared even a little bit. I have cried many times on my prayer mat when things got rough, especially in FV’s 2nd year. I have poured my eyes out to Allah swt asking for guidance and to give me strength when I needed answers. And guess what, everytime after I take off my telekung, I feel so refreshed and so alive. If I’ve worked hard and I’ve put my trust in Him, whatever happens after that is beyond my powers because all our lives have been mapped out anyway. Whatever He says is and will be, no matter what anyone does. Seriously, God is the best motivation. For anything in life.

Another one of my many motivations is definitely my partner. Whether or not he’s my husband (or scandalous ex-boyfriend hehe), I have always had faith in him to always take a good lead on the company. So my advice to all future business owners is if you have to have a partner, make sure you choose the right one. Someone you can see yourself with for a long long time, someone who can solve problems and someone who isn’t easily stressed. Kinda like looking for a husband, no? Lucky for me, God gave me a 2 in 1 deal. Saved my time and money. Haha. So many times we hear businesses going sour because of partners. So before you get in bed with this person for the rest of your professional life, do your homework. And maybe also ask if you can see yourself having lunch with that person everyday. Silly, but could be important! In my case, yes so far.

Anyway, my lunch partner and I were invited to the BFM studio for a live interview recently. Have a listen to us talk (or rather, me talk over him hehe) here.