Teefa Says..

Slide Show

June 5, 2017

Teefa Doodles

i have always had this creative side of me that loves art, specifically in doodling and sketching. When i was little, i did these cute little drawing of myself and my family, of castles, princesses and mermaids, and i always draw stuff and hide notes for my dad to find.

Fast forward to adulthood, nothing really changed. i still draw but less princess, more doodles of women. Sometimes, when i'm bored or when i'm stuck in a long meeting, i found myself doodling random stuff. Friends who sees my doodling would say that they are nice but i just shrugged it off. i never thought of it seriously.

Until recently.

i found myself obsessing over sketching and coloring. i'd Google stuff like "how to draw face expression" or "watercolor for beginners". i'd watch videos on Youtube on watercoloring and lettering. i even bought a proper tools for sketcing and coloring. i started with a sketchpad (200gsm instead of the normal A4 paper), a set of brush pens that could be used as watercolor (Sakura Koi Brush Pen), and various brushes.

Slowly, doodles, illustration and letters started to fill my initially-blank sketch pad.

i'll show you but don't laugh okay? These are very rookie/newbie/amateur/whatever term for a beginner.

 A sketch of my friend, Shaf.

 My new Hershel backpack that i bought on sale


A gorgeous, gorgeous pair of shoes that i so want but can't afford.

 This little card i made for my Mama-in-law on Mother's Day but didn't send out. Bad menantu! Will present it to her on Hari Raya.

Guess who?

A late-night doodling when the boys were asleep and i wasn't. i drew this girl and on the last moment after i painted her lips, the sleeve of my t-shirt spoiled the still-wet paint. Menangis mak! But it kinda looks like the girl had her lipstick ruined by a really good kiss lol

Afif and Dhani's current obsession is Wall-E.

 Kids

And then i got interested in flowers, leaves and wreathes. i began finding my way into them..



There you go, a peek into my sketch book. All of these are sketched using pens and colored with Sakura Koi brus pens. Banyak la lagi tapi tak cantik langsung especially my lettering. Ni buku dah nak abes mukasurat, kene beli buku baru haha.

Watercolor Workshop by The Craft Crowd

Last Saturday i attended a watercolor workshop for the very first time. Semangat takkk? Because i still have so much to learn, might as well i go out and learn from professionals. This workshop is the perfect one for my first proper class. We're painting tulips!

i thought i'd do okay as i'm quite familiar with brushes and colors but boy, i am wrong. First of all, real watercolor is so different than these colors from brush pens. Second of all, i found it hard to 'budget' the water and color ratio. Like how much should i dilute? Ehhh why la my colors don't shade as beautifully like the girls in front of me? i panicked and convinced that watercolor is not for me, i might as well give up now. Third of all, it seems like people come with friends and the instructor knows some of them quite well. i did make small talks but at a workshop like this, everyone is engrossed with their work. How to properly talk laa? i feel lonely with no one to talk to.

Anyway, at first i hated my painting but the more i look at it the more i feel like they're not too bad. Ada lah rupa tulips, tak la jadi rupa rumah ke rocket ke kann..


At the start of the workshop. We sketched our tulips.

The end results.
Not too bad but definitely need improvement.

Now i have a set of real water color. i can't wait to explore and create beautiful things. These things definitely need lots and lots of practice which means i need to spend time on it. Time is not really a luxury for me as i have a full time job, house to manage with two kids to look after and grow. But it's okay. Will take it slowly and no giving up!

Wish me luck in my arts journey. i have a goal and a plan for this but it's still so premature. Will share with you from time to time. In the meantime, you can check my doodles out in Instagram account @teefadoodles and hashtag #teefadoodles.

May 26, 2017

Back on (the Fitness) Track

When i was a school kid, i've always wanted to be the cool girl when i grow up.. You know like the ones in Hollywood movies who are always put-together; with a stable career, fabulous wardrobe, hot body, a loving partner, glamorous life with red carpet events and a gym membership.

Remember this movie? Elle Woods who is put-together, career as a lawyer, fab wardrobe, HOT BODY, handsome boyfriend, glam life and gym membership.
In a version of me in my head, i'm all these with less pink stuff, no pet and a brunette.


Fast forward to 6 years ago, alhamdulillah, even though i don't have it ALL, but i have a gym membership. Hahaha. And i made sure i go to the gym at least 3 times a day. 

Oh yes, i remember the thrill and rush i felt when i go for workout sessions at the gym. Going to yoga, pilates, kickboxing and RPM classes. Exchanged look with sweaty hot guys. And in the locker room, staring jealously at the women's rock solid abs.

Not only that, a few months before my wedding, i joined a bootcamp nearby my office. One-hour session twice a week of pure torture. i remember the pain in my arms, abs and ass after each session and i remember being addicted to the pain. THAT much effort made me careful with what i eat. Apa guna 50 push up dan beratus kalori terbakar pastu makan pulak nasik lemak ayam kan?

Believe it or not, before i became a mother that was my life. i was quite an active person.

i know it's not an excuse but being a mother really takes a lot of me. Ever since i got pregnant with Afif in January 2012, i didn't work out. Ye lah lepas dah beranak, masuk keje pastu setiap hari nak bergegas balik sebab tak cukup bekalan susu ibu kat rumah. Nak pulak badan maintain pre-pregnancy weight idok ler rasa perlu nak workout bagai. Tak sempat wean off, pregnant plak with Dhani. Lagi la tak bersenam. i admit i missed being active but running after my boys are workout enough for me.

 Me now. One toddler on hips running after a preschooler on the loose.


Sehingga lah sekarang. Baru sedar diri.

Starting from January 2016 after my unpaid leave ended and i return to work, i notice my weight gradually increased. Masuk keje dengan pre-pregnancy weight. Now i have gained 7kgs in total weh. Ye la seronok tetiap hari makan dengan kawan-kawan.

Back then i never let my weight reach 55kg. Now it's a hard battle not to let it reach 60kgs.

i know we should never let the number of the scale to determine our fitness and body figure tapi bila seluar yang dulunya longgar dah jadi ketat, sila paham-paham sendiri la ye.

I KNEW I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING.

People talk about carb-free diet like Atkins. i know that's not for me because i'm a breastfeeding mom. i need sufficient calorie intake to ensure Dhani gets Mama's milk. And i love food so i'm not ready to sacrifice that.

i considered liposuction but my husband said NO.

The other option is to get physical.

The cheapest way is to go running at the park. i started running in October last year. i made sure i run at least twice a week. Sometimes when the kids are napping or when my husband is home, i go for a run during the weekend. Usually i spend around 20 minutes per session, running for about 2.5km. Man, it feels so good. Heart pumping, spending time outside and see the world. i even joined Orchid Run last year, running for 5km. i notice my weight hasn't really dropped. Sekilo je la kalau ade pon but my pants feel a bit looser.

Makin lama makin demotivated sebab apsal aku tak kurus-kurus weh?

So since last April i stepped up my game a bit. i started going back to the gym!

GASP!

It all started when the rainy season hit KL. i cannot run in the park so i go run on the threadmill at the gym (free membership by the employer, bless them!). But i hate running on treadmills because the time seems to be ticking so slowly.

So guys, i started to go to cardio kickboxing and zumba classes!

Nowadays my schedule looks like this: 
- Tuesday and Thursday: one hour Zumba session after work. Organized by Petronita woohoo!
- Friday : cardio kickboxing class at lunchtime

Recently i tried a Zumba class at the gym on Monday noon and it was awesome too! So i might make that a permanent. So bye-bye lunchtime get-together!

Speaking of Zumba, oh God i love Zumba! i can't believe all these time i never thought of trying Zumba. i love that it doesn't feel like a workout - it feels like you're dancing. So i dance, dance, dance during these sessions. Our instructor, Hannah Kamal is a beautiful lady with a lean, hot body. Looking at her is like looking at a dream body that i couldn't have.

All these activities look like a lot but sadly i haven't lost any kgs yet WHICH IS SO FRUSTRATING OH MY GOD!

Ko bayangkan 3-4 kali bersenam seminggu tapi tak kurus-kurus sape tak stress weh. Memang meroyan. Husband and the Sisthurs have been reasoning with me that maybe lemak dah cair but you're gaining muscle but whatever lah kan. My pants are still tight at the ass. So you guys are wrong!

But i'm trying to keep positive. Maybe i didn't reduce my calorie intake. Maybe i take too much carbs. Maybe 2 months are not sufficient to see results yet. So i'm gonna keep trying to get my pre-Dhani weight back.

It's really a struggle. When i was in my twenties, diet or workout seminggu dua dah nampak kurus. La ni habuk pon tadak! It's true what they say; aging sucks!

Wish me luck, guys!





April 23, 2017

Beijing Winter Trip 2016 (With 2 Kids Under 5, No Kidding)


Ni gambar introduction. 
Haha.


Tak mau ulangi kemalasan berbelog pasal Seoul trip, hakak akan cuba untuk berbelog dengan komprehensif trip ke Beijing kami baru-baru ni. Okay, it's not exactly baru-baru ini. It was 4 months ago *face palm*

Anyway, ceritanya begini.. 

Kitorang memang tak pernah terfikir atau teringin pon nak pi China. Mungkin sebab banyak cerita tak berapa best yg aku dengar pasal China kan. Plannya hujung tahun nak balik rumah PIL di Kuching. Tup tup MIL ajak pi berjalan ke Beijing. Ada kawan dia ajak.. Ikut tour katanya. Kitorang on je la asalkan dapat bersama keluarga. Gituh. *calon menantu terbaik please*

Usually when we travel, we prefer a DIY traveling. From air ticket to accommodation to transportation and food.. Semuanya plan sendiri lah. Bila semuanya DIY, memang aku control freak habis. Bukan apa, nak elak tak cukup duit, tersesat and segala macam ketidak-best-an berlaku. You are fully equipped.

Tapi bila ikut tour ni aku jadi cam tak senang duduk. Not much information were shared pre trip (mungkin sebab aku tak banyak tanya.. ye la semua MIL handle. Tanak jadi control freak plak) so banyak bende yang aku tau tak tau. Bila ikut tour ni, semua orang dah sediakan. Aku tak lah research and google apa-apa sangat. Ikut je la. Yang bestnye dah terjaga segala transportation (naik tour bus), makanan Halal and important tourist spots memang ko akan pergi. Kalau sendiri, segala harga tiket, train route, kedai halal ko selidik sendiri maka ko banyak la belajar tentang tempat tu. Gitu la sedikit sebanyak pros and cons DIY travel or tour-guided travel.

Our tour schedule looked something like this:

 Itenerary by our tour agent, Flyworld Travel & Tours

Though the itinerary looks like this, the actual order of program wasn't 100% as per the itinerary. It depended on what day of the week it was. For instance, we were suppose to go tho the Great Wall on a Sunday but the tour guide shifted it to Monday to avoid weekend crowd.

We reached Beijing at midnight. The next day, our tour started at 10am. Macam biasa, kitorang memang lambat lah. Dengan bebudak dan mak bapak tak cukup tidoqnya kan. i don't really remember our exact schedule so i'm gonna comment based on the placed we went to.

We are the back seaters of the bus.

Tiananmen Square

We went to Tiananmen Square on our first morning. It was so cold but sunny at the same time. Dhani cried for the first few minutes of walking towards the square because of the sun got in his eyes. Drama anak aku ni. Afif refused to sit in his stroller, instead he insisted to push the stroller all the way. Haha. Once we got into the square compound, we're a bit relaxed to let the kids roam free because there weren't that many people around. Seronok la diorang berlari.

Overall, Tiananmen Square visit with kids would not be too much hassle. Afif and Dhani enjoyed the space and they were in constant amazement looking at how huge things were (huge gates, huge statues, huge doors, lots of space to run freely..) but they wouldn't care much about history. i had to breastfeed Dhani but couldn't find any nursing room close to where we were at that time, so we sat down on a bench a bit hidden from people and do our business. Only down side is we had to walk a bit, about 15 minutes from our bus to enter the Tiananmen Square. It was a challenge because the kids got excited to walk (and run) along with all the people.

On the way to enter Tianmen Square. In an attempt to carry him instead of letting him run wild.

Marching of the guards and my husband and Dhani were in the middle of it all.

Entering one of the many doors


The kids went crazy here because of all the space.

Running wild

Dhani with his beloved Atok


Half-frozen river


Walking in the park.

Yours truly.

The Summer Palace

The Beijing Summer Palace comprises of a huge land with a big lake, gardens and palaces in it. We went to the Summer Palace on our second day. It was a bit hazy that day but it wasn't too bad. I'd say it's a good recreational place to go for a stroll on haze-free day. Afif and Dhani like the place because they can roam free. There's this long huge padestrian bridge which Afif loved and kept singing London Bridge is Falling Down when we walked on the bridge.

The main bridge at Summer Palace compound.


The Summer Palace.
We only viewed it from across the lake. Look how hazy it was.


Afif's 'London Bridge'


Girls and selfies :/


The Great Wall at Juyongguan

It took us around 2 hours to get to the Great Wall of China at Juyongguan Pass. Okay, honestly i'm not sure which Great Wall that we went to (was it Badaling or Juyongguan?) but based on my search on Google, our photos look like the one at Juyongguan.

There are ample of parking space for buses and private vehicle, two or three coffee shops just by the entrance and a mini photo studio where you can pose with traditional costumes. And of course, the Great Wall of China..

The Great Wall look as majestic as i imagined it would be.

It was a cold day. Temperature was around 3C. The kids were well behaved at first. They just had their lunch, so Afif was his usual jolly self and Dhani was half asleep in his stroller. Butttttt the Great Wall, being the Great Wall with steps and all, it is NOT suitable for stroller usage. We parked the stroller at the little photo studio but as we began our walk, Dhani cried and cried. He just wanted to breastfeed and nap. He demanded that we return to the bus. It was not an ideal situation for a hike up the Great Wall. My husband and i decided that i go back to the bus with Dhani and he went up the wall with Afif and the rest of our family. i admit i was so bummed to have missed hiking up the Great Wall but a crying baby will make the experience even worse.

When we got to the bus, our driver was nowhere to be found. Upon seeing the bus is locked (and a bit of explanation from me), Dhani suddenly forgot that he needs milk and a nap. He was suddenly okay again and wanted to walk (-_____-)

So i made my way up the Great Wall AGAIN, carrying a 12kg baby in my arms (i fully regretted that we left the baby carrier at home). So up we went.


At first i carried him..

..and then we walked.
The walk is the good part. The stairs is the hard part!


Half way through the wall, we finally saw Mr. Chenta and Afif climbing up the stairs.
Look how steep the steps are!


Afif and his Atok

Bertabahlah sayang mengangkut anak naik Tembok Besar Cina


Jendela istana konon.

Family!

Moh balik. Penat dah!

This is my review of our Great Wall visit in Tripadvisor.

Beijing Snow World Ski Resort (Caution: Scammers Alert!)


Before we went to the Great Wall, we went to Beijing Snow World Ski Resort (BSWSR). It was a bit of a joke, really, because 1) even though it's winter, it wasn't snowing. So instead of real snow, we have man-made snow at BSWSR, 2) there's no resort whatsoever. Just 2-3 buildings and 2 snowy slopes for skiing.

It's a good thing that we had our tour guides. We were informed that the workers at the resort will charge you for every little things they do for you. It is their way to earn a living as they can only work during the winter months because only in these months the ski resort is opened. If money is not a problem for me, i won't mind but i'm not a rich girl so yeah.

Scammer alert #1:
After you put on your rented ski boots, the ski resort workers will escort you to the 'travelator' that will bring you up the slope and  will offer to teach you to ski down. While they don't really speak English, they all looked so friendly and sincere but this won't be for free. They will charge you for the ski 'lesson'.

Instead, we straight away refused their offer to accompany us. We climbed a little bit up the slope (our first time skiing actually so we're nervoussss) and tried to ski down on our own with guidance from Ustaz Shahul, our tour guide. Even for first timers, none of us fell down. This built our confidence so we took the travelator to go higher up on the slope.Not to boast or anything but even for first timers, we didn't fall on our asses at all. i mean i'm so natural at skiing i should compete in the Winter Olympics *blows nails*

Scammer alert #2:
After you've done skiing, make sure you receive 3 cards upon returning your ski gears; one for the ski sticks, one for the ski, and one for the ski shoes. Only when ALL 3 cards are collected by the gate bouncer, they'll let you leave. USD25 will be charged if you miss a card and believe me, they'll make you miss a card. My husband didn't receive his ski card after returning the ski and after we really insisted on it, the old man finally gave him the card.

Baru sampai

Fefeeling jadi teenager balik.Excited laki bini.
Thanks Mama and Babah for entertaining Afif and Dhani while we ski!


Travelator that takes people up the beginner slope.


Teehehe.

Keras di situ.
Ok belum cukup layak bertanding Olympics.

There's also this little hill for sledding at the ski resort. Unfortunately it has a separate entrance with the main ski area and you have to pay 10 Yuan for 2 rounds of sledding. Memandangkan kesian Afif excited nak main snow tapi tak dapat sentuh snow pon kat tempat ski tadi, kami bawak la dia pi main sledding ni.


The sledding area.

Preparing to sled down.


Jyeahaha!

He asked me to build Olaf. But notice my ungloved hands there? i only managed a small snowman and Afif wasn't impressed at all (-___-)

Dia paling bahagia bila jumpa salji. Sampai skang ajak pi main salji.


Panda Visit at the Beijing Zoo

What's a trip to China without looking at the pandas right? We went to see only the panda at the Beijing Zoo. Dhani missed all the fun because he slept all through the visit. The panda center biasa je la nothing wow to shout about. But i guess visiting zoo in Beijing is much nicer than our KL zoo trip because it's so hot in KL. Kat Beijing nyaman ja. Gituh!

Pandas are so lazy they just sit around. i don't know how they came up with Kungfu Panda. Haha.

Tengok panda dari jauh.

Dhani tido don't care about no panda

Silly picture is a must.

All in All..
.. we had a blast during the Beijing trip! i think you'll have a blast anywhere as long as you're with family right? A few things to note tho:

- Beijing air is always polluted because of the limitless factories in Beijing and its surrounding area. Some days you'll get clear day, but most days are hazy. It's always a good idea to bring face masks to Beijing.
- Traveling in winter could be a challenge if like us, you're from a tropical country. During our trip, the temperature ranged from -7 Celcius to 7 Celcius. Naturally, the kids were our main concern. For each of them (for 6 days duration), we brought 3 sets of thermal inner and long johns, 2 winter outerwear (fleece and down jackets), 1 pair of fleece lined jeans, lotsa gloves, 1 pair of scarf and winter hat. Other than that, we brought their normal jeans/khakis and long sleeve t-shirts. The key to winter wear is LAYERING. Layer your usual outfit with thermal wear and jacket and you'll be fine.
- Also bring along lipbalm and moisturizer for the kids. And feed them lots of water. It can get pretty dry.
- Trips to Beijing memang tak sah kalau tak melawat kilang teh, kilang sutera kilang jade dan kilang bamboo charcoal. These are like a requirement for all the tour agents to bring the tourist to these places. Kitorang tanak pon, diorang kata kene jugak bawak. Dah la barang mahal kat tempat-tempat ni. Haih.
- I'd recommend our hotel especially if you're a Muslim looking for affordable accommodation in Beijing. They serve halal breakfast spread, a halal noodle restaurant and Tesco are next door.
- There are LOTS of Halal Chinese food in Beijing if you know where to look. Because we traveled with a travel agent, our meals are all taken care of. We went to various Halal restaurants but unfortunately i didn't really take note of the restaurants' names.

My Tripadvisor review of City Inn Beijing Hotel.


Beijing on hazy days.


That's all for now. Til next post!