Chewing on gummy worms

The room is quiet and the only thing I can hear is Gavin James humming in my ear. But I’ sure girlboss can hear the tap-tap-tapping of my fingers on the keyboard and me chewing away at the Haribo gummy worms I bought earlier.

We’re in Brunei right now, finally resting after a long day. I got up at 2AM, was in a cab at 3AM, got to the airport at 4AM, had the bags checked in and ready to meet girlboss at 5AM, and was finally on the plane at 6AM. Travel is not as chic as it may seem to be.

Girlboss worked super hard today as a judge for the #AirAsiaRunway Ready Designer Search in conjunction with KLFW that’s coming up in August. I love tagging along for the judging sessions because I learn so much and it’s fun to pick favourite designers and cheer them on till the end.

The pool of designers from Brunei was pretty small compared to the other ASEAN countries – which is totally fair because they do not have a design school here and this is the first year AARDS came to Bandar Seri Begawan. But what a great pool! There’s definitely amazing and untapped talent here, there were a few contestants that I really liked. Hopefully we get to see them next year!

So girlboss is taking some much needed rest-time before we head out for dinner with Nabeela (better known as the super famous, extremely chic, uber cool LipstickMyName) and her husband *girl-crush sighs*

I better go get myself together before we head out.

 

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Signing our house loan!

It’s after official work hours but everyone is still at their desk. I’m so happy that I ticked off a good amount of things on my list. Ashraf and I are going to meet our banker this evening and sign our loan agreement for our first house!

I am so excited, this is a big step! I had to learn so much about financials, loans, and picked up so many acronyms! MRTT, MOA, FD, EA – I now dream in acronyms!

I think one of the toughest things about buying a condo is actually waiting for the keys. Why do they take so long to build?! I guess the bright side is that 2019 is ONLY 2 years away. Haha!

Our first house! A piece of land (well, actually sky) that’s going to be all ours. Something with our names on it! It’s such a huge feeling and I can’t believe it’s actually happening. It took us a while to get a loan because of all the paperwork, but it’s finally going to be worth it when we seal the deal tonight.

Sidenote: Imandatory #7 was published a while ago, and #8 comes out this Wednesday! These are two have been my favourite ones to share with you guys.

I think I put a bit of pressure on myself when it comes to the articles because I want each one to be better than the last. The worst thing would be for someone to say “oooh, last week’s article was better..” – which of course is bound to happen because it’s a very unrealistic expectation.

If you’ve read my blog before, #7 will seem somewhat familiar. I’ve written about breaking up with Journalism before, and this article is just an extension of the feelings I’ve had since writing the post almost 2 years ago.

7) Why We Broke Up 17) Why We Broke Up 2

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No paper, lots of problems

I have to write Imandatory #7, it’s due tomorrow and all I have is a blank page and a blinking “|” (you know what I’m talking about – the thing that moves you when you type, haha)

I seem to get the best ideas when I’m driving – which is annoying because I can’t type or write them down, and when I get the chance to, the words and sentences don’t line up the same way. Infuriating!

Hopefully posting up Imandatory Reads #3, #4, #5 and #6 will give me the boost I need. I hope you guys who are reading these for the first time, enjoy them! Reading them in newspaper format is a lot different (and better, for me personally!) than reading the online versions. As always, thank you for your support and love!

3) My Hair Lady 13) My Hair Lady 2

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Blue-sy Monday

I am trying to be a part of the 5AM club. I have decided that 2017 is the year where I make this habit a reality – it’s a lot harder than I thought. Last night I thought I’d be able to jump out of bed at 5AM, but when Taylor Swift sang “‘Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play” – Ashraf turned her off and buried me under the sheets. Totally his fault.

So the day didn’t start off how I wanted it to, but Alhamdulillah I’ve been very productive today! It’s been a bit blue and slow, but I’ve ticked so many things off my list!

One of my to-do things is uploading last week’s Imandatory up on here so you guys can take a bit of a peek. I’m working on article #4. Article #3 has already been submitted (my editor likes it!) and I have to submit photos for it. Going to Mims’ after work to get some of the photos I need. I’m planning to leave right at 6PM and do food prep for the week, wash Ashraf’s white shirts in bleach,  organize my desk and find someone to help me put up my whiteboard (more on that later).

Have a great week everyone!

the-lego-t-shirt-epiphany-1 the-lego-t-shirt-epiphany-2

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Say Hello To The “Imandatory Read”

Be honest – who can’t pronounce it properly? Or do you need a split second before saying it to be sure?

I’d like to put it on record that I checked with at least seven people before deciding on naming the column “Imandatory”. I wanted my name in it (a bit into myself eh?) and thought a play on words would be nice. Mims and Moo came up with a ton of suggestions and I really liked Imandatory.

Do you get it though? I want the column to be a “mandatory read” for you – something you have to read all the time (or every two weeks) – and my name is “Iman”, so all I needed to do was pop an “I” in front of “mandatory” and that’s it!

So start off by saying my name “ee-mun” and add “duh-toh-ree” and you got it! Imandatory! Meh, we’ll see how long we go with this.

I’ve gotten some very kind and sweet messages of support and congratulations, I just want you to know how grateful I am for this overwhelming response! I never imagined people would even realise I had a column (but when someone who has 800K+ followers posts about it, you’re bound to get a reaction, haha)!

My journalism professor for International Affairs in third year, Professor Cohen was a columnist in the Ottawa Citizen. He wrote about the world, politics and current affairs. I used to think he was so cool and I would imagine what it would be like to be able to write about anything you want, and have people actually want to read it.

Well Professor Cohen, I hope I made you proud.

Okay sure, my content is not as serious as the global status quo, the impending pressure on international security or why America chose who they did – but I still hope he’s proud of me! Hahaha.

I was blown away when I got the offer from the Editor of Flair. Really? Me!? I’m just, Me!

But she told me I could do it, and I thought it would be a great way to gain more experience and to try out something new. Also I wanted to make the little journalist in me feel fulfilled and finally get to see her name in black ink. Plus my dad makes jokes about paying for journalism school and not seeing me on the news or in print  -_-

I guess I am on TV (in a different capacity) and in print (also not under the hard news section, oh well) so Papa’s jokes can now die.

The Imandatory Read comes out every two weeks in the Flair section of the News Straits Times – and for all my wonderful friends abroad who aren’t able to get a hard copy, you can read my “maiden article” here – and I’ve also uploaded the scanned versions below.

Thank you again to everyone for your constant support. I’ll repay you by blogging more.

Wait, maybe I should not make promises I can’t keep, haha. Okay, I’ve got to write a few articles now, deadlines are coming up! Love you guys!

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I Hate This Funk

Tonight I am feeling a mish mash of feelings. I am annoyed, sad, frustrated, confused and a whole cocktail of other negative emotions.

But the worst part of it all is I don’t know why I feel this way. Is it because I’m annoyed Ashraf would rather play his video gamed instead of hang out with me? Is it because I know I have to wake up early tomorrow, or simply the fact that I’ve reached my cookie quota for today and I’m dying for a bag of Famous Amos.

I don’t like negative feelings. They’re alright once in a while because balance is important – but I hate being in a “funk”. If I knew what was bugging me, I’d do something about it and resolve my issue, but I’m at a loss … I’m annoyed that I feel this way.

Iman is not positive all the time.

I’m going to sleep this off, and hopefully tomorrow morning will be much much better.

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We’re Going To The Beach!

We’re sitting in a pretty bumpy plane heading to Male. Male is the capital city of Maldives. Yes, Maldives is big enough to have a capital city.

Girl Boss and Man Boss are in Tokyo for a work trip and it was “too expensive” to bring me along. I secretly think Man Boss is trying to phase me out of their trips so they can make it more romantic #thirdwheelproblems They’ve been on four trips without me – how is that supposed to make me feel?! Who’s going to iron their clothes, carry her bag and make sure they have all their limbs?! drama lebih

Anyway, they’re gone for the whole week and the last time they left me I was bored out of mind. There’s only so many times I can clear my inbox in a day. 

Lightbulb: take the week off! People assume that if they’re gone, I don’t work, but far from the truth, I’ve been at the office sorting mail and “boosting morale” on all their previous trips.  But this time I felt like I was due for a bit of break. 

This job takes a lot out of me (dedicating your life to someone else does that!) and I don’t want to burn out, though it feels like it sometimes! So I cashed in some of my untouched annual leave, visited AirAsia.com and decided to go somewhere we’ve never been before!

Ashraf recently finished his Masters and starts his new job in October inshallah so this trip is a nice break for me, and a fresh beginner for him before he starts his new adventure. Fine, these are just lame excuses for a trip.

I’ve never done something as impulsive as this before and it seems sort of surreal to not have to “ask permission” from my parents or worry about having enough money to go – you just have to dive in and make it happen. We just casually told them that we’re leaving for a few days, and I shifted around some of our budget to make it work. Being married is awesome guys, you can do (almost) anything you want! I highly recommend.

So the plane ride is 4.5 hours, and we’re more than half way through it. I splurged on the hot seats (big spender) and bought a bottle of water for RM 3. I’m tired of reading my book, my mouth is dry from eating too many sour skittles, I have a bit of a stomach ache, my phone died, Ashraf’s laptop only has Batman cartoons and thriller movies, and I just want to get there already!

I can already imagine the ocean and the palm trees and all the sunblock I’m going to have to slather on myself. We’ll be arriving at 8PM though so I hope the ferry that needs to take us to our hotel will still be operating. If not, we’ll figure it out. It’s an adventure!

Okay, I’m going to play the jumping dinosaur game on the google page that comes out when there’s no internet – you know what I’m talking about. See you in Male!

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