everyday things

cold sore

One thing I like to do throughout the day is drink loads of water. I feel weak when I can’t drink water and I get so dehydrated that I have to reapply my lip balm every few minutes to hide my dry lips. And worst of all, I get cold sores. Red mosquito bite-like thingies on my face (they always just attack the face don’t they, why oh why).

Anyway, so during Ramadhan, I’ve been getting red dots on my face due to dehydration. I chug down my throat bottles of water at night of course and drink until my tummy looks 3 months pregnant, but still I get the occasional cold sores. Can’t be helped, I guess, especially the combination of air conditioning blasting indoors and our scorching hot Malaysian weather outdoors.

Today, a big one on my upper lip.

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Can’t really see how bad it is because of the sunlight and the phone resolution, but there’s a super red bump right there I swear.

I was conscious about it all day and would check the mirror every few minutes to see if it has gone down. Of course I keep thinking it has gotten even bigger each time.

Guess who’s having a field day about my cold sore? Oh, my husband, of course. Love of my life.

“Do you notice it?” I looked at Dean and asked.

“Notice what? The super huge thing on your lip? Oh, it’s hardly noticeable,” followed by an evil chuckle.

And more of these kinds of remarks…

“Whoaaa baby, what is that? I can’t look directly at it.”

“Push it back in, baby. Push it back in.”

“Hey baby, I think your lipstick ran… Oh wait…”

And when I look at him, he goes, “WHOAAA, that’s scary!” 

-_____-”

Anyone know what to do to get rid of cold sores?

hokkaido goodness

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What’s up, guys?

I’m in Hokkaido, Japan and here I am sharing the photos I took from my afternoon walk just now. Fresh air, clean water, beautiful nature.

Ok fine. I’m in my living room and these photos I knicked from Google Images. But mannnnn how I wish I could be walking along those pink flowers. I’m sure you do too!! But fret not, guys. We can’t be there, but we can have a piece of Hokkaido in our tummies.

Here. Come sit down with me on the floor and have some Royce’ chocolate.

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I just had some Royce’ chocolate so I’m feeling all serene and calm and zen like how I would be if I were in Hokkaido. Let’s pretend I’m whispering calmly throughout this whole post ok?

I’m just so amazed with Royce’ chocolate after I learned more of their origins. All the products are made in this beautiful place, the agricultural heart of Japan. The ingredients must be super fresh and knowing Japanese people, everything is done systematically, hygienically and with utter perfection. I love that every piece of Royce’ is carefully packaged and presented. They have absolutely NO PRESERVATIVES which also means they have a shorter shelflife… well, 1 to 3 months, but let’s face it, I finished my Royce’ in 1 hour.

They are not certified Halal because some of their chocolate contains liquor so you just need to ask which ones don’t. I had the pleasure of choosing for you (I ate them for you, too. I’m sweet like that)

First, let’s try this Nama chocolate since it’s their signature chocolate. Nama means pure and fresh, btw.

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Ah ah!!! Don’t use your fingers. Please girl, we’re not peasants! Here, have a spatula to scoop it up.

Yep, all Nama chocolate come with a spatula because it should not be exposed to the heat from our fingers. They’re made so specially that they become very sensitive to warmth and pressure (they come with their own cooling bags, how cool is that!). They are invented and conceived by the Royce’ founder himself, Mr. Yasuhiro Yamazaki, Nama chocolates are a soft ganache chocolate made with fresh Hokkaido cream and gently dusted in fine cocoa powder. This special one is super soft and creamy, and just smooooothhhh. *bows Japanese-style*

Comes in Mild Cacao, Ghana Bitter and Ecuador Sweet. Nama Mild White that you see above is the first liquor-free seasonal Nama white chocolate and is only available in July.

Now, the Chocolate Bar.

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This one I dowan share with you because it’s my personal favourite. I kept eating one piece while doing work and every page flip deserved one little cube. I loveee milk chocolate and this one did not disappoint. Full rich creaminess that just melted in my mouth.

Still not sharing.

Comes in Milk, Almond and Black. (Rum and Raisin contain alcohol)

Ok, this next one I can share. Have a piece of Amande Chocolat Black.

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For nutty lovers, these are chocolate-coated almonds. Each Californian almond is first roasted to bring out their fragrance and crunchiness, then wrapped with rich, dark chocolate before being coated with fine powder sugar and cocoa powder. This one… you’ll just go crunch crunch and realize half finished already….

Also comes in Amande Chocolat Milk and Amande Chocolat Assortment.

Ok next is R Chocolat Milk Cocoa.

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This is a fun one to have at home or office because they’re individually wrapped, perfect for guests who you feel obliged to feed. Water? Please… take it up a notch and feed them Royce’.

R Chocolat (R as the first letter of Royce’) has 2 distinct shapes inside and 4 different flavours. Creamy milk filled with cookie crunch and milk cocoa cream, this is also a good one for milk chocolate lovers like moi.

For this next one… I am going to be honest and tell you how disappointed I was… that I didn’t even get to try one!!

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Their Potatochip Chocolate.

This was the story. I was in a generous mood and I said, here guys, try these new chocolate potatochips I got. Everyone went ooohhh let me have one. (They said ONE). I went for a meeting. Came back. Gone.

For what it’s worth, I’ll take that as an indication that these were “super yummy”. One colleague said “V, you have to try one!!” followed by a look from me that clearly said Then why didn’t you leave me any.

This is their best-seller. Salty and sweet all in one, the crispy ridged potatochip is individually coated with chocolate on one side. It even has a surprise guest appearance by Mr. Cheese to add to the perfectly crunchy potatochip. I need to buy another box of this and HIDE THEM!!!

Ok sorry.. cannot get angry. I’m in zen-mode now, back to whispering.

If you would like Hokkaido in your tummy too, you can get Royce’ from any of their 7 outlets; Isetan KLCC, Bangsar Village, The Gardens Mall, Ben’s Independent Grocer in Publika, Tropicana City Mall, Tropicana Golf & Country Resort, and Empire Shopping Gallery.

If you do everything online like me, head on to this website now. They deliver to selected places.

being a mom

daniel is turning one

Daniel turns one next week and people have been asking what I have planned for him and how excited they are to see a lavish celebration. Well…. I hope a lavish birthday to you means me baking a burnt cake (that will end up to become brownies because I’m that good at baking) and Dean, Daniel and I in one end of the dining table taking selfies. Hehe.

On the AVA group chat today, Toots asked me what I have planned for Daniel. My answer:

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Tough love, indeed! My dad, as soft as he is, tries to always discipline us sisters and always try to keep our heads firmly on our shoulders. Yes, birthdays are special, but some people take birthdays too seriously that they’re just not good for anyone! Of course he gives us a huge kiss and birthday presents, but before that he will tell us about life (longgggg monologue here) and even make us answer his questions like “What do you expect to achieve this year?” since it’s a whole new year in our lives. He even writes them down so later on he can throw it back to our faces when we screw up. I used to find it so annoying but now that I’m a parent, I think that’s quite clever to do that to your child! Haha. It might be a small thing, but it’s definitely meaningful because you actually make your child make a vow to herself that she came up with herself, and it keeps her in check throughout the year. (Well, that’s the hope anyway!)

So next week, Daniel, prepare yourself because I’m going to ask you on your first birthday, “What do you expect to achieve this year?”.

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Yep that’s right. Think about your answer, my son.

Your answer better be “To do really well in play class.”

I expect nothing less, sweetheart. *nose in air*

#asianparent

being a mom fashion and shopping pd daily shoes working girl

seeing monochrome

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It’s been one of the most hectic weeks in my life, professionally and personally. We had a huge launch which is Nora Danish for FashionValet Eid collection (everything is RM 199, you have to check it out!) and I’ve been answering press left right center for this first ever celebrity collaboration with Nora. The response is pretty amazing, Alhamdulillah. Will post up BTS pics soon.

Personal life, Daniel is just such a delight to be around because he’s starting to talk. He’ll babble words none of us understand yet words that make us tickle with excitement inside. I never knew I’d be so intrigued with “Geh geh” and “Bwa Bwa”. I just know they mean “I love you Mommy” in Daniel language. Now that Ramadhan is here, Dean and I barely have sleep at all because we’ll finish work on our laptops so late and in a couple of hours we wake up for sahur. In between all this, Daniel will wake up for breastfeeding sessions. It’s pretty challenging (and exhausting!) but I love this rush.

Anyway, in spirit of the #nd4fv collection’s monochrome-ness, I present to you today’s monochrome outfit.

Wearing striped shirt from Milktee, shoes from Melissa (all their shoes are on 20% off now at FV!) and scarf from dUCk, all FashionValet. Pants from 7 For All Mankind, bag from Celine. 

designer review fashion and shopping pd daily

a good kind of change

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Crop tops seem to be the craze now with the fashion bloggers that I follow on instagram. But of course they can bare it out with their belly buttons showing. If I did that with my headscarf on, fuuhhhh the outrage from fellow Muslims… so let’s not go there! But who says hijabis can’t rock crop tops? I bought this one white crop top and I love it! I wear it with a shirt underneath it for the preppy look, or if I want to wear it on its own, I’ll look for something high waisted.

Here, I’ve paired it with a super flowy and yummy skirt from Mizz Nina’s new brand Madeena. She had a brand on FV called Mizz Demeanor before but she has left that behind and rebranded everything to become a Muslimah-friendly brand called Madeena. Respect to her for her beautiful change! What I love most about her is that her items are always affordable as she said to me that she wants all women to own a piece of Madeena and they’re all basic items that we all need. I especially love that I can get the long sleeve maxi dresses and the basic turtlenecks from her brand. Kudos to you, Nina! May God bless you for all the dakwah you are making now.

Wearing Stellar skirt from Madeena (comes in 2 colours), men’s watch from Daniel Wellington, Sofina bag and black inner from dUCk, at FashionValet. Scarf by Louis Vuitton, crop top from Zara.

fashion and shopping

raya shopping

The Raya madness at FV still continues with soooo many brands launching almost on a daily basis! We have so many rtw collections from established designers, new designers, independent designers, sometimes even I can’t keep up with the new arrivals!

Anyway, check them out if you haven’t by clicking on this tab to check out all the individual brands’ Raya collections. We’ve got more coming in July too, so keep checking and don’t be the last to know!

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Happy Raya shopping!

being a mom

where art thou, remote

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The whole evening today, Dean and I were looking everywhere for the Astro remote control. Daniel is always the culprit now that he has discovered legs and he is soooo active and loud (and so cute Masyaallah when I see his butt running around the house, hands wailing in the air for no reason). The other day, I found my credit card on the carpet, Dean found some money at his play area (Daniel loves money btw, it’s quite funny), and remote controls at the darnest places. And did you guys see my instagram post of teabags all over the floor? I made him clean it up, that boy. I dread the day he can reach the fridge door because I’m pretty sure I’ll find chicken or steaks defrosting in the bathtub.

We looked for the remote control in our room, in his room, in my handbag, in between cushions… everywhere! And when we ask him where he put it, he innocently put up both arms out by his side and went “Hehhh?” like he had nothing to do with it. It was soooo cute I can’t even. But as cute and cheeky as he is, we are losing things in the house and finding them in odd places. I’m sure this is normal huh?

But at the end of the day, I don’t mind at all. I’m just enjoying this phase of my life because it’s just flying by so fast.

Daniel’s almost 1 soon, and this whole year he has just brought so much happiness in Dean’s and my life. Everytime I walk into a room, his face lights up and he just wobbles over to me with a big smile on his face. He is superrrr clingy to me (still wakes up a few times a night, I’m still sleep deprived, guys) but I find myself hoping he wakes up sometimes so that I can see him come to me and I get to squeeze him in my arms. He’s definitely brought new meaning to my life, and I just.. sigh.. I just love him. Today when he walked to me with that big grin, I hugged him soooo tight he squirmed to get away from me. Hehe. So geram.

Ok back to looking for the remote. Wish us luck! So sick of watching 5 adults go “One two three four… HIGH FIVE!” over and over again. Need to watch the bloody news or something for a change!

Now… if I was an Astro remote, where would I be….