Image Slider

Work Related : New Shop Stickerrific

This post was drafted on September :

For those art & craft lovers, you must have heard about Stickerrific in PJ (near JayaOne). Well, I contacted them last year asking for a spot to send my products - and they asked me to come with my products when I have the time. But last year I was super busy with Fin soon after I contacted them and I didn't find the time to make stuffs. So I kinda kept low afterwards.

Until 2 weeks ago I contacted them again, and they were still interested to meet me & my stuffs. So for the past week I've been preparing stuffs to send to Stickerrific. I am the only worker - so I had to do every single thing : designing, preparing file, printing, cutting, packing, bar-coding & sending the items. Imagine if you want to send 10 types of your products and for each of the 10 items, you want to send 10 pieces of it, then you'll have to prepare 100 items. Most of my items are not ready-made stuffs, they are in a way or another : hand-made or needed my personal touch. So you can imagine the time-consuming process.

Of course I can choose to 'just design', mass produce all my stuffs, and not having to think about the small fussy things. But here's the difference between just a designer and an independent artist : independent artist like to give personal touch to each and every item. This explains why I love preparing my sticker packs and why I don't really feel connected to items like my postcards (because I just send it to print and it is ready).

If you are a crafter + hoarder, this is your heaven :


So on that Thursday we went to Stickerrific.
Other than Af, my mom and my brother tagged along as well. I was greeted by the siblings and we discussed about all my items (well they take it all) and I felt oh so happy oh oh ! I prepared the delivery order copies, let them count the stock, and that's it - my items are officially at Stickerrific :D You can now get some of my items at Stickerrific (like the travel journal, Japanese food sticker packs, Kuroneko postcard, enamel pins and some of my other big stickers) - so you don't have to wait for an event or pay the shipping fees.

I did some shopping here as well.
I bought Stickerrific's cat sticker and a beautiful letter-pressed postcard :

Anyway, just a few days later they informed me, telling that all my Japanese sticker packs are sold out and I need to restock +.+ I am super thankful, but I was busy preparing my stuffs for the Jesselton Artisan Market in Sabah so I had to put the priorities first to the event then to the shop.

Current situation : I am preparing all the items I need to send to Stickerrific especially the sticker packs. I'm not sure about the pins (all the pins that I brought to JAM was sold out so I need to prepare the packaging as well). Busy busy week. This weekend we will be having a mom's birthday holiday at PD and next week's weekend I'll be joining Machi Mochi Market at Sunway Velocity - so I don't think I have extra time to rest for now :F

Run : My 2nd Half Marathon with Minimal Training

Last weekend I ran my second half marathon and Af ran his first half marathon ! (read my last year's first half marathon here) :D

We hardly run these days - because honestly I'm a bit bored of running. I can't run when the sun is up because I always get headache afterwards, so I had to run at night and usually at night I want to do my works + watch my series after a long day of working :F

If you aren't familiar with running, a half-marathon is a 21km run (half from the full marathon, 42km - the length of the town of Marathon to Athens). 


Is it possible to run a half marathon with a minimal training ? :
I actually started my training just less than 2 months before our run. I did yoga stretches, strength training and weight lifting at home. We only managed to run a 5km training for 7 times before our half marathon. So we didn't trained for a long endurance run and the last 15km relay run we did was in April. With our training, it looked like we were training for a 10km run instead of 21km :F

So I was worried sick, I even wanted to call it off (because I started to go to the toilet 3 times that day - and wanted to use that as an excuse). But Af wanted to try his first 21km, and I was going to be there to support "his firsts", so we did.

To answer my question, yes, almost anyone can finish a half marathon (it is possible of course) but whether you'll get to run the whole way, or probably walk half of the run, it all depends on you and your body. If you are curious to whether you can run a half marathon and want to try it, well you should - especially if you already tried 5km, 10km and 15km. I urge you to try a 21km run :D

Preparation :
We each brought 2 sachet of fruity energy gel to eat during our run and we shared 1 sachet (half-half), 1/2 hour before our run. We also ate lunch 6 hours before our run and didn't eat anything for dinner. Didn't go for carbo-load, just ate rice as we do everyday. 

Weather :
It was a calm night, not so windy in Cyberjaya compared to Putrajaya at night (because we've been running every night for that same week).  

The route :
Less hills compared to Putrajaya. I think, it was quite an easy-ride for me because there wasn't as much hills than my first half marathon. First timers should run in Cyberjaya ! But the environment is a bit boring, just darkness or random buildings or construction sites. Here's the map :

The run :
KM 1-10 : It was a slow paced run (I always run slowly : pace 8-9), nothing to prove here. I've always been a slow runner. I stopped at every water station and shared the water with Af so that I won't be drinking too much and feeling bloated. Af left me so many times, but I managed to chase him afterwards.

KM 10 - 18 : I started my 20-20 counts, count to 20 for running, count to 20 for fast walking (this works for people who don't train much :D so you don't stop and walk). I ate my energy gel every 1/2 hour after hour 1 1/2. We got a banana at one of the station, but I just hold on to it (I didn't want to go to the toilet while running). 

KM 18 - 21 : I left Af, I still use my 20-20 counts. My body was still fine, my feet was aching. The whole run felt like a super-long walk in the park (maybe because I didn't really pushed to run fast). Af arrived around 10 minutes after me :D He was a bit moody and pukey and gloomy - just like me when I did my first half marathon. I ate my free ice-cream and pumpkin soup. And I felt good.


Result : 
Inofficial Time : 3 hours 18 minutes

Things I learned from my 2nd half marathon :
  • It is possible to run a half marathon with minimal training :p
  • Eating an energy gel 1/2 hour before the run kinda help a bit, but it left me feeling suuuuuper hungry during the whole run. My stomach was growling. 
  • I hated the portable toilet, so I try my best to avoid going to the toilet :F (girls, you would understand). But I stopped at every water station and I drank the water, thank God I still didn't feel like I have to use the toilet for those 3 1/2 hours. 
  • The aftermath happened on the 2nd day after the run. 
Aftermath :
The worst day is usually the 2nd day after any run. I walked to the pasar that day like a pregnant lady. On the 3rd day, I still can't run (I tried jogging in the house and it didn't felt good), so I just did minimal weight lifting. On the 4th day, you can start running again :) Oh, and I even got my period 3 days early after the run (I usually have a problem with getting my period on time) but not this time.

The running & finisher's shirt :
The running shirt is bright orange with an ugly looking HUGE semi fire-fighter + man at work's illustration at the back of the shirt. We both agree to donate the shirt after this. But the finisher's shirt is a decent one (thank God) :

The running shoe :
Oh. I'm still using my black + white POWER running shoes that I've been using for running since last year after the Bromo run. If you are worried you don't have super-expensive running shoes to run for a half-marathon, no worries guys, I survived with my running shoes by Power (the price was less than RM 80). You can definitely run with anything you have. Imagine Pheidippides running from Marathon to Athens - he definitely didn't wear a running shoes :)

Am I going to do this again ?
Yes, of course.  

Movie - Old Childhood Horror Movies

Last weekend, we watched the latest famous horror movie that used to haunt us when we were small, IT (1990). Before we headed for Af's shooting for a contest that afternoon, we watched it together at Alamanda (AF + my whole siblings sans my brother). It's been ages since we watched any movies together, and knowing this movie is related to our childhood, I thought asking them all out was a nice plan. 

The 'old' IT (1990) :

I remember when I first saw it, we were still living in the Mardi quarters. That night after we watched the movie, it was almost midnight and Ma said it was already too late (because we got school the next day). I was probably 7-8 during that time. My older sister and I had to brush our teeth (and we were terrified - remember the toilet scenes?). She rushed to brush her teeth as fast as she could and I tried to keep up with her. I was smaller, so everything I did was a bit slower. She ran, pushed me so she'll be ahead of me, and left me in the bathroom. Leaving me alone, crying, because I was scared =.= (or that's how I remember). I was scared for quite some time afterwards, it is all because of the movie.

When we grew up, I bought the VCD to re-watch the famous childhood horror movie and we did watched it together (and it was super bad). The scenes were funny, the effect was bad and the ending was frustrating (if you haven't watch the 1990's IT, don't be surprised when IT finally turned into a giant spider). I might be biased, because I'm not afraid of spiders so the thought of something horrifying/ghost-like finally turned into a giant spider, well it was not exactly as scary as the odd-looking clown.


The 'new' IT (2017) :
There is something about the arch of his eyebrows and his awful unnatural smile that makes him a bit uncomfortable to look at. Also how the eyes go sideways when it shows its sharp teeth was amazingly horrifying as well. This was a nicer version of the old horrifying clown :

Anyway, I hardly watch the jump-scare parts so I was safe. The movie showed a lot of scary faces so it wasn't as scary as horror movies that hardly show 'the ghost' (just the present and unseen entity) - which I think gives better effect in using our imagination than trying to capture the things that we are scared about on screen.

The idea was a bit old-fashioned, maybe because it was written in the 1986 (and I did read the book - I didn't like it as well). So clown and giant spiders aren't exactly as scary as other current horror movies in the market.

One of the main way to fight this evil-entity is by not being afraid of IT or what IT shows because most of the time, it is not real. Maybe the message here is just trust your guts and fight-off the scary things that lives inside of you instead of shoving it up to IT and let IT feeds on your fear.

All in all, yes, the movie got a lot of jump-scares and it didn't even ends there (because there will be the second part in the future). It was nicely done as well, but I just didn't really like the idea. It was a good entertainment to keep up with the latest version of the old 1990's movie, IT. If I let kids watch this movie, I'm pretty sure they will be scarred for quite some time like we all did when we were small :D


Gremlins (1984)

I also watched Gremlins on Netflix last week :D
Gremlins is the bad version of a cute furry looking animal called Mogwai. There are several rules regarding these Mogwai (looked like those 90's Furby) :

  1. No bright lights
  2. No water
  3. Do not feed Mogwai after 12 am
Look at those human nails ! Ewwh.
Here's a thing about re-watching your childhood horror movies : it is ridiculous and funny (because of the bad effects). These Mogwais look like hand-puppets in some of the scenes and those bad multiplying and morphing scenes ! I cringed so many times. How on earth did I gave myself permission to be afraid of Gremlins under the bed when I was small :F

Other worthy mentions : Child's Play (1988), Tremors (1990), Evil Dead (1981)

Note : As we grow older, we learned that monsters, zombies, aliens and evil creatures aren't real. What we are really afraid of are unseen things, those sounds in your living room, those feelings when you know something isn't right, those corners your cat stares at, and of course, evil human beings, deep dark lake and cancer :F

Little Things 239 : The Book Challenge, Flash Version

I hardly read books since I worked at home, freelancing. So I decided to finish as many books as I can to catch up on my 2017 Reading Challenge (6/30 books - in August). Especially all the books that I've been hoarding. I cheated a bit, because most of these books are motivational/self-help books (so it is way easier to grab than fictions) and I reread books that are easy + I liked.

Here is the book list (since August):
  1. H+ (Plus) A New Religion? : How to Live Your Life Positively Through Happiness, Humour, Help, Hope, Health by Edward de Bono
  2. O's Little Book of Happiness by Oprah's Magazine (Contributors)
  3. Damn Good Advice by George Lois
  4. Blanket by Craig Thompson
  5. How to be Happy by Eleanor Davis
  6. The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami
Current Read (Books completed : 12/30) :
  1. After the Quake by Haruki Murakami
  2. The Longest Honeymoon (travelogue) by Izni Zahidi
It's hard for me to read other fictions since I read Haruki Murakami's books (so I decided to reread all his books, and buy his latest 2 books soon) and thankfully, other than him, I'm still reading Orhan Pamuk & Elif Shafak's works. 

I now hardly buy other fictions, but several days ago I listened to Yann Martel's interview on Spotify (Monocle 24 : Meet the Writer) and he talked about how he finds it odd for an adult to claim that he/she no longer reads a fiction, especially those powerful people/leaders. Here's an excerpt I took from his interview while talking about powerful people who don't read fiction : 
He's the man who doesn't read. I think he's a kind of man, who stopped reading probably in his 20s. He's obviously a bright man but he came into the conclusion that fiction is not real, therefore the truth must be relative. Therefore stopped reading fiction and probably just started reading non-fiction, history, biographies, and there is nothing wrong about it, of course. But, in defence of fiction, fiction goes further than non-fiction can go. We go with our empathetic imagination where you can't go with the facts & histories, even with the most insightful interpretation. Nothing can do it like fiction can do. So if you failed to read or you never read fiction or poetry or plays, it's impossible to know human condition. There are only 2 ways to knowing who we are : either by reading or by traveling. To me these are two very equivalent activities. Travel to Turkey is like reading a book. How can you know the human condition if you don't read especially if you are a leader. If you are a leader of a nation and you've never read and you've never travel, how can you rule? How can you know what our dreams are, where we must go, if you don't have dreams yourself? I'm just suspicious of powerful leaders who don't read. - Yann Martel.
Points taken.
Although I've been reading fiction for more than 20 years and I can't deny the fact that I'm bored of all the repetitive man-made stories. I will try to find more fictions by underrated writers.  


How to read when you are busy 24/7 ?
  1. Put your current book next to you, every time you take a short rest, read several pages. 
  2. Read at least 1 chapter before you go to sleep, after you ate lunch and dinner, after your zohor and asar prayer.
  3. Start on 2 books at each time, so you can take turns whenever you feel bored. (Easy if it is motivational books than fictions. But just imagine it like you are watching several series on Netflix, and you take turns based on your mood).
  4. Plan your next book, so you can start right-away. I'm guessing you have lots and lots of books you haven't finish yet, if you are an avid reader/hoarder 😛
There are 3 more months & 18 more books to go.
Good luck !

Little Things 238 : Fictional Series, my Daily Entertainment

It's September guys ! 
Shondaland strikes back, soon the season 14 of Grey's Anatomy and the final season of Scandal is coming back after a long hiatus. And because I support everything that Shonda produces, I just started to watch How to Get Away with Murder

Plus, the new season of Walking Dead is also just around the corner :F

I've been watching a lot of series from iFlix & Netflix (the amount is ridiculous) because I can watch these series while packing parcels, cutting stickers, sewing stuffs, or inking my travelogue (even though my Macbook screen is only 13 inch small). I never really sit around doing nothing and just focusing on watching series/movies because I'm the kind of person who can't just sit around quietly and I'm a multi-tasker !

Let me summarize and mention all things worth mention throughout the year. 
These are all the series that I've watched until the latest series/the end of the series :

The funny & drama :
  • The Office (9 season) - I think by far, this series is the most fun & entertaining one to watch with other people. In my case, especially during our daily dinner time. We don't really binge-watch series in one shot, so usually we will take some time to finish off each series. So we watched 'The Office' for several months and we really love it. It was fun and hilarious and annoying and we love each character (my fav are Micheal vs Toby and Jim vs Dwight ). You can definitely watch this with your family & friends (and there won't be any awkward moments). ⭑⭑⭑⭑
  • Gilmore Girls (7 season) - In celebrating the 17th year anniversary, I rewatched the whole seasons of Gilmore Girls + A Year in a Life. Even after all those years, I still love the long witty dialogues and unique relationships among the characters. What changed was : I first watched it when I was 15 and I felt connected to Rory and now when I watched it as I turned 31, I felt more relatable with Lorelai. Things that I used to think that I'll choose (for example over Jess or Logan) changed with my experiences in life. Things that used to annoy me (like Lorelai's lack of commitment) now seems understandable. I noticed I grew up a lot since I last watch the series. (and it is sad because I'm getting old, and calming because I'd found my peace). ⭑⭑⭑
  • Grey's Anatomy (13 season) - I've been watching Grey's since my school days. I can't remember how many times I did my reruns because every time I finished watching until the latest season, I probably almost forgot the earliest season (because the series is so long and still on going after 13 years). I still love it, despite having to watch the original team reduced the size and just leaving only Meredith & Alex. So many people are dead, so many people left, so many changes and I can see them grow old on screen. It is still the best drama for me. ⭑⭑⭑
  • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (2 season) - I watched it because I didn't know what to watch when I cut my stickers for events. I needed something light and funny and simple. I love the unique character Titus Andromedon and it is quite entertaining to watch. 
  • 2 Broke Girls (5 season) - About 2 broke girls trying to open a cupcake store. Nothing heavy, just normal daily problems, silly stupid jokes and a friendship. 
  • Fresh off the Boats (2 season) - About an Asian family in the 90s living in the US. 
  • Unreal (2 season) - About a young TV producer in charge of reality TV dramas. I learned that all reality shows are mostly about rating and manipulating contestants into producing the biggest drama that will make people want to watch. What's sell and what's boring. I am not into a reality series, so I can't give a full opinion on this. 
  • Younger (2 season) - About a 40-year old single mom trying to get into the working industry after a long hiatus. After failed interviews, she decided to turned herself 'younger', cheated about her age and got herself into the industry she was going for.  
  • Guidance (2 season) - School life drama from the school counselor's point of view. 

The mystery, crime & thriller :
  • Breaking Bad (5 season) - I started this series last year and I just finished the final season last month. There is a big gap because I was a bit bored. I didn't like how all characters changed by the end of the series, I didn't like the ending, I didn't like everything because it was not a happy story. It was depressing, heart-pumping and sad to watch. I'm just glad it is over :(
  • 13 Reasons Why (1 season) - Depressing yet we just can't stop watching because we wanted to know whyyy. Can't wait for the 2nd season. Read more here. ⭑⭑⭑
  • Fargo (3 season) - We LOVE the series. If you love mystery and fucked up story, please please watch the series, it is the best one so far. ⭑⭑⭑⭑
  • Scandal (6 season) - I think by far, I only love the first 4 seasons of the series (because politic + crime is a new genre for me). I never really have any exposure on political tactics and possibilities - I hit the-moment-of-adulthood and I'm no longer innocent :F I could never understand why some people crave for power & money, so I never really thought about most of the current political issues. Watching this opens my eyes to real issues out there (aside from all the scandal & drama lah). 
  • Walking Dead (7 season) - This is all Af's doing. I watched the series because Af watched it so now I'm hooked. It is the era of zombie apocalypse and the zombies are dying because there are more zombies than human. Human are trying to survive from dying hungry zombies and mean sociopathic Negan + his huge clan :F About people trying to find meaning in the midst of all the chaos. 
  • The OA (1 season) - I can't really explain this series. Everything is very vague and confusing. You'll get a hint of The Life of Pi (where you are not sure whether what's been told is true or not) and there are more questions than answers. About the issues of near-death-experience, where they'd go when they flatlined, etc. ⭑⭑⭑
Fantasy :
  • Game of Throne (7 season) - Oh my God, are you cikeding me? If you haven't watch it, well you should. I was a late bloomer because I watched the series since last year after having to watch it together with Af. So AF did a rerun, watched it together starting from the first season and since then I became emotionally invested. The latest series ended just couple of weeks ago and we already can't wait for next year :F The anticipation is just too much. But it is not a family series (you can't watch it without having to see nudes everywhere for all of the early seasons). ⭑⭑⭑⭑

Other than all the series that I've watched, here are my current on-going series for daily dinner :
  • How to Get Away with Murder
  • Orange is the New Black - also a huge amount of nudity & same-sex relationships.


What I learned from watching all these series ? :
  • It's amazing how people can get emotionally attached and fully invested in a fiction. 
  • I love how open people (producers/directors) are these days, how they try to change something, send a message to the public. I noticed several Muslim characters in the latest Grey's Anatomy season - when there was none in the past 12 seasons. I noticed a lot races in current series compared to the older says, not just white people. There are a lot of African American as a lead characters in series or all strong female characters as lead characters (Shondaland dramas). Geek and nerds are not portrayed like they are used to (refer Glee & 13 Reasons Why). Gay people are actually everywhere as how it is in real life. 
  • I learned about political dramas (or those possibilities) & power-craving world we are living in, and I'm not as innocent as before. I educate myself about crime & awful stuffs that could happen in this world.
  • I laughed a lot. Some of the fictional characters even became apart of our family, some sort of random discussion and inside jokes in our lives. 
  • I don't really watch sci-fi or superheroes series (still not so interested).
  • I'm trying to open myself to real-hard stuffs/issues : crime, mental problems, politic, moral values, historical events. So I'll try other genre in the future.
If I can read while I do works, I'll probably read as much as I watch series :F

Random : Question question

Good morning guys, I have a great news ! 

The inking and colouring process of my second travel diary is almost finished (current : 45 pages !) . There will be more additional pages of short comic to connect the story, so I think the book will probably reach 50 - 60 pages. For now, most of the pages are just list of things that happened and illustrated visuals. I am sooooo happy and excited :F 

The main question here : 
  1. Do I want people to use it as a guide & use it as an activity book while they are in Japan, or just read it as a story? Because this decides how the book should go. 
  2. What will the possible title be? 
  3. What should I draw on the cover page? 
Tell me what you think !
You can also answer in my Patreon here.

All your input will be taken into consideration ❤ ❤

Random : Holiday Season + Findings

Last Thursday during Merdeka holiday, we went back to Raub for Eid-Adha celebration. 
Happy things that happened during the holiday :
  • Learned another new dishes from Af's mom : Chicken rendang + Sardine Curry + Curry Mee with crab. My cooking skill extended vastly since I got married 2 years ago because every time we go back to Raub, there must be something new to learn
  • Special birthday party to Af's little sister, we have a very nice relationship despite huge age difference. We clicked since we first met, and she's only 10. We gave her a book, DIY felt set and loom bands accessories. 
That's the traffic when we went back to KL on Sunday and our surprise birthday partay 
    • A company in CA, US contacted me regarding stocking my enamel pins + patches to their online shop. Definitely will consider !
    • Af's mom passed all raw crystal stones to us (belonged to Arwah Ayah) and I can't wait to do a research. I wear black shungite pendant from Russia (kinda mentioned it before in this post) and keep a moonstone from India on my desk. My dad and brother are also crystal collector =.= but I don't want to be a collector, I am more interested in the crystal properties itself instead of their physical beauty. Note : The reason I wear a shungite pendant with a black thread is because I looove how it looked on me instead of gold and silver and all the lovely things most women love. I don't really wear girly jewelries so I've been searching for something more suitable to wear. And I found this mineraloid for my 30th birthday. Flat black stone kinda represent my rebel and sarcastic nature :
    Image taken from their website, thus the dried flower & old parchment
    • I also received my parcel consisted of 2 new enamel pin stocks and I am not waiting for the backing card specially designed for these 2 new pins. Pre-order now (until 6th Sept).
    • Ptptn loan balance updated and currently only RM 6.5k left to be paid ! Look how far I've crawled.

    Interesting Findings :

    Little Things 237 : Paying PTPTN using KWSP 2 (updated)

    I currently have a remaining balance of RM 22,730 for my PTPTN loan from my full loan of RM 40k in 2010. I graduated almost 7 years ago from Uniten and I've been paying my PTPTN religiously. Some of my friends finished paying off their loan, some (like my brother) still shamelessly refusing to pay it. 

    So Af and I discussed about our education loan, and decided that we should try to pay some of our PTPTN using our KWSP - Akaun 2. Several weeks ago, we went to KWSP to ask around about the procedure, the process sounded easy so we decided to proceed with our plan. After we registered for the i-Akaun at KWSP, we went to PTPTN in the same week to apply. I had to wait for 2 days for the online application before receiving a message on my phone and went to KWSP again to sign a form.

    1. At KWSP (I was in Raub) :
    • Register for i-Akaun
    • Print out your EPF statement to see your balance and decide how much to use. (You can only use the money in Akaun 2)
    • Time : less than 5 minutes
    2. At PTPTN (in KL Sentral) :
    • Bring your transcript and statement of graduation from your university.
    • Take a number, wait.
    • Tell the guy at the counter (about taking out your KWSP to pay PTPTN loan)
    • He will then ask you to fill-in a short form
    • He will ask how much you want to use from your account to pay your PTPTN
    • He will give a form (for you to bring to KWSP)
    • Wait 1-3 days, you will receive a sms about your application
    • Time : less than 10 minutes (depending on the crowd at PTPTN)
    3. At KWSP again (in Petaling Jaya) :
    • I received the message
    • We went to KWSP in Petaling Jaya (bringing my transcript, the copy and the form from PTPTN)
    • She asked for my fingerprints on my form
    • Settle, wait for 7 working days to see the deduction
    • Time : less than 5 minutes
    After a week, I received a text message stating that my application got rejected because of incomplete documents (not my fault, I did asked the counter whether I should submit any documents and she said "NO"). Af's application was successful, his loan is now 10k lighter. So after 2 weeks, I decided to reapply :

    1. At Home (online) :
    • I got online and applied to pay my PTPTN using account 2 again
    • In 1 day, I received a text message stating that my application has been received and I need to go to any KWSP to submit my documents (University transcript & graduation certificate)
    • Time : less than 5 minutes

    2. At KWSP again (in Petaling Jaya) :
    • Take a number
    • The same woman at the counter asked for my IC
    • Submitted all printed documents & showed the original copy for approval
    • She asked for my fingerprints on my form
    • Settle, she said to wait for 7 days for it to be approved
    • I mentioned about previous rejection (she said it was odd that I got rejected, the application was pretty straight forward. I should have received a phone call from KWSP if they need more documents - but maybe I missed the phone calls, maybe )
    • Time : less than 10 minutes

    3. The application : 
    • After 7 days, I checked my KWSP status : DILULUSKAN
    • I checked my PTPTN account and received the latest balance of RM 7,786 (Aug 2017)


    I decided to use 15k to pay my PTPTN, and because it is more than half of my remaining PTPTN balance, I should get the 10% discount (I'm not sure why I didn't get the discount). I saved long years of interest fee. So, the balance of my education loan now is : RM 7.7k. Way ahead of my original timeline to finish off paying my education loan :D I am so happy, I can't believe I paid up so much over the years and it is almost over soon ❤
    • Education loan (2010) : 41k
    • Current loan (2017) : 23k
    • Current year : 7th year after graduation
    • Pay-out (KWSP) : 15k
    • 10% discount : 1.5k
    • Balance : 6.5k
    During 5 years of my early working life, my salary was so low I had to pay the minimum payment requirement. The 2 years after that was a great career time. My main goal is to pay in less than 10 years, at least to be free from my education loan. And then I will think about my next step to pay off my apartment loan (which seems like a looooong way to go) - but step by step guys !

    Note : I will ask the PTPTN about my 10% discount and will update this blog post later.

    Update : I went to Ptptn and asked them about the 10% discount, and they told me that the discount will be added in Sept. And I just checked my account today and noticed that I received the 1.5k discount ! My current Ptptn balance is updated and the remaining balance of my education loan is 6.5k. I can even pay it full by the end of this year if my account is strong :F

    Extra notes :
    • Your KWSP account (Please apply for i-Akaun at KWSP)
    • Ptptn applicants - Check your PTPTN loan balance here.
    • MARA applicants - 
      • Apply i-Akaun at KWSP & take fillable form
      • Go to MARA HQ and request to pay MARA using KWSP (more forms)
      • Go to KWSP with forms, submit documents and leave fingerprintsss. 

    Little Things 237 : Family & Friends

    I suddenly remembered the first open house that we did during Eid, after such a long time of living in shadows of broken past. I was excited, the whole family was excited, because we don't really invite people to our house. It was a rare occasion, a feast, a celebration. It was the first house my mom felt comfortable for social gathering after the divorce (more than 10 years ago).

    After so much foods that we cooked, so many hours for preparation, so much efforts and excitement. I ended up inviting the one and only close friend (she got something else planned, so she didn't came), Af invited his friends as well (but none turned up), my younger sister didn't really invited anyone that she knew will come, my older sister invited her close friends and colleagues ( but I just met only W during the feast) and my younger brother invited his friends over (which in this case - some of his ex-school mates). My mom didn't asked anyone other than relatives that stay in the area (2/3 families came). That's it. 

    The event reminded me of why we didn't really do social gathering anymore. 
    Other than we are all socially awkward beings and we don't really have any friends, we are just too broken to have relationships other than the our own family ties. We don't really have the energy to build up trust and connection with others. Either we just brush it off, or everyone around us can see how tall the walls that we built from all those years. Some part of me did felt disappointed, in a way, I felt like my wedding all over again.

    But in any relationship, the connection needs to go both ways. There are reasons why people won't commit in a one-sided friendship, it is just a waste of energy. And I understand this. But I didn't realized that almost my whole family is on the same page as me. 

    I'm not sure whether I should worry.
    I am fine without friends in my life, but I'm not sure how they cope with that.
    Whether they enjoy the solitary life as me, or they do feel lonely.

    Work Related : All Things New + Shiny

    I think I've been super productive these couple of months. I love making and creating things without anyone telling me what-I-should do or not-do. I think there is something about being an artist, you kinda choose to follow your instinct and passion. 

    As a designer, I had to follow all the designer's rules and requirements made by clients. Although it is good (in a way), I always thought it was somehow giving me limitations and I'll be stuck and depressed (every day). It did taught me how to be a better designer, but I was born a rebel. I don't like to follow :F I think if Yayoi Kusama listened to other people's critiques since she started making art, she won't be the legendary Polka-dots Queen now. 

    As an independent illustrator, I can experiment on things that I want to learn and explore. I can use the same colour all over again, I can try different styles and decide on how the end product should be. All my syok-sendiri stuffs that make me feel excited to work everyday. ❤

    Here are the things I made since I work as a full-time independent illustrator :



    They are available at my :

    Local e-store (Malaysian only)
    Etsy (International)

    And I am forever thankful to people who chose to
    support me on my Patreon (I love you guys forever)
    ❤ ❤ 

    Work Related : First Self-published Travelogue 2

    My love for far-off places started when I was 14, after my first Fukuoka homestay program in 2000. I decided then, to collect as much money as I can, to distant myself from my friends (so I wouldn't feel bad when I need to say goodbye) and to love being alone (in case I never meet any like-minded life partner) in order to fully commit to the idea of travelling in my whole adult life. 

    When I was small, travelling was only something rich people/international students would do. Without money, we can't really go to far places because flight tickets alone was so expensive. As I mentioned, I started collecting money when I was really young, by the time I finished my degree when I was 25, I managed to collect RM 10,000 from all my duit raya, daily school money, and part-time works. Those were collected since I was born, because I hardly touch the money from my ASB and I am a very dedicated person. It wasn't much la, but collecting money that much without any help from parents or full-time work, RM 10,000 was a LOT.

    So by 2009, I started travelling every year. 
    I think I started by going to Umrah, and every year afterwards, I allocated money to go to at least 1 new place each year. 

    And because I am really thankful for achieving my life-long dream to travel to new places, I also put an effort to record my stories while travelling by writing, taking photos and doodling. So that I won't forget that I've been dedicating my life to see these wonderful places in this world and I'm hoping to share it with the world back.


    I love books, I love writings and I love illustrations, eventually I knew I wanted to share my own travel journal. Of course, anyone can write a travelogue, or buy a guidebook from the bookstores. But what I wanted to share was something more personal. Little tit-bits, little stories, random mini adventures. 

    When I read a visual travelogue, I want to know the person, their stories and how the place + adventure affect them. So I started collecting travel journal, and visual travelogues from illustrators & comic artists.

    The first visual travelogue I bought was in 2012 : French Milk by Lucy Knisley and soon afterwards, I bought all visual travelogue each time I found out an illustrator made one. I love their stories, I keep them as an inspiration, I read them over and over again. 

    The list of my travel/illustration related books :
    • French Milk by Lucy Knisley (France)
    • Displacement by Lucy Knisley (a Cruise)
    • Carnet de Voyage by Craig Thompson (Europe & Morocco)
    • Memento bento by Alessandra Criseo (Japan)
    • Tokyo on Foot by Florent Chavouet (Japan)
    • Maneshima Island Japan by Florent Chavouet (Japan)
    • Perfect Tree Shapes by Frannerd (France)
    • Orange Ginger Jam by Frannerd (Chile)
    • Natsu by Atelier Sento (Japan)
    • Jejon di Jepun by Jonsuraya (Japan)
    • We bought a bus ticket from KL to England by Black Jellyfish

    You see, passionate people make things that they are passionate about. As for me, combining stories, travels and illustrations in a book is something that I want to do mainly for myself (syok sendiri)

    That's why I finally finished digitizing the last year's travel journal and self-published it. I knew I don't have something solid to purpose to publishers and I hated the idea of being controlled by what-can-sale and what-not-so-'in' the market. So I just made it myself. Some of the books from my favorite illustrators produced were self-published, and I did bought it online straight from them. So I thought, why not?

    In this Indonesia-Singapore travel journal that I recorded, I kept those little stories in the simplest form of writing and doodles (because I am not a comic artist, I don't do stuffs in comic boxes, and I don't have rules to follow). It was just a travel journal that I recorded during that time, only. So it wasn't perfect, and collecting 22 pages of random doodles thinking that I might want to share with the world was hard. BUT, as I would always say, "JUST START" with whatever you have and whatever know, you'll learn to improve along the way.  

    Here's to my first self-published travel journal ❤ :

    Anyway, if you want to read and also add my book in your collection, 
    you can now buy it from : My Online Shop ⭐⭐

    And if you want to help me making more illustrations and more books, you can support me from my Patreon account , I usually post early videos, secret projects, and post random gifts and latest zines to my Patrons ❤ 

    Little Things 236 : Wedding/Event Videos


    As some of you might have guessed from our various #sirieskapi videos, my husband, Af is a videographer & video editor - if you guys are planning on getting married soon and is currently searching for an event's videographer, you can contact him at : ♥ I am his loyal assistant 😀

    Sample of his works : Vimeo 

    *2017's Price Offer

    Mini Escapism : Days in Melaka

    We needed a short break from work.
    I wanted to go to Ipoh but we only had 3 days because we had to attend my cousin's wedding on the weekend, so we decided to go to Melaka again (it is one of the nearest anyway).

    But I went to Melaka so many times and just several months back, I stayed in Melaka for almost a week for the Melaka travelogue project. During that time, I tried so many stuffs, I went to so many places, I ate so many local foods. So, this trip wasn't as exciting as I anticipated :( We didn't really know what else to do other than beach-walk and eat !

    Things we did in Melaka :
    • walked in Dataran Pahlawan and Jonker Street area
    • tried the Asam Pedas dish near Taming Sari Food court area 
    • went to Mamee Museum for a nice Ais Kacang ❤
    • window shopping in Dataran Pahlawan
    • went to Coconut Shake in Batu Berendam ❤
    • sat at the beach of Pantai Klebang ❤
    • dinner at Umbai seafood
    • walked in Jonker Street at night 

    Af compiled this video yesterday :

    ESCAPISM #14 from Farik Karim on Vimeo.


    Here's a detailed post on places we went and foods we ate :

    Mamee Jonker Street

    Our main stop would be : Mamee Jonker Street. I think I've been here 3-4 times since Mrs Lim told us about this place. She brought us to several other places that you can find nice cendol/ice-kacang in Melaka and this is my favorite !

    I love their ais kacang and cendol ❤

    If you are like me : you like the taste of evaporated milk more than gula melaka, you will definitely like their cendol and ice-kacang :D The place is a bit underrated, because I'm pretty sure people hardly go to Mamee Jonker Street to try their cendol/ais kacang. I wouldn't, if Mrs Lim didn't tell us about the foods there.

    Ais Kacang + Matcha Latte


    Coconut Shake in Batu Berendam

    And instead of bringing Af to the famous coconut shake in Klebang Beach, I suggested to go to Batu Berendam instead (this is also Mrs. Lim's idea). I love their coconut shake special and the free-flow of coconut water. You can also try their Yong Tau Fu

    Here's the map :


    Klebang Beach

    We didn't do anything much. The weather was nice when we arrived. We sat around on our mat that we brought from home, taking videos and pictures before the rain came an hour later.

    Klebang Beach

    Klebang Beach

    Klebang Beach


    Ikan Bakar Parameswara, Umbai

    We went to Umbai Beach after we finished taking photos and videos in Klebang Beach (around 45 minutes drive). The weather was really bad, it was super windy and dark. We went here just for the seafood galore :D Instead of going to the famous Umbai Seafood, we went to the other seafood restaurant : Ikan Bakar Parameswara.

    We ordered for nasi lemak (AF), kerang rebus and sotong celup tepung because we weren't that hungry after our short stop at Coconut Shake Batu Berendam just few hours before. I think I like the foods in Kedah & Bagan Lalang much better.

    Umbai Beach

    We also found this man-made long wooden boardwalks near the restaurant :

    Umbai Beach

    Here's the map :


    From the look-out point on the highway
    (if you like to do random stops) :

    Look-out Point


    This trip felt so short because we went out on the afternoon and arrived in Melaka around 3 pm on that Thursday and went back home on the afternoon of Saturday. If I count by the hour, it was just a 48 hours visit in Melaka. 

    Hopefully we can plan more mini escapisms soon.

    Event : CAFKL & Food Poisoning

    Last weekend's event was a success !

    A lot of my stuffs that I brought and prepared for the event were sold out (sticker packs & enamel pins), people also came to pre-order the Eskapi travelogue and I saw a lot of talented illustrators and comic artists all around. There were a lot of self-published comics and zines. I think I spent around RM 100 just for buying other people's works.

    Look, my favorite Moana artprint by Sillyjellie ! :

    For me, this was my first comic-related event. I usually apply for art & crafts events because I don't really feel like I belonged to the comic-industry (I don't do comics). So I never really know what to expect in this event. Fortunately, it was the best among the best sales so far, doubled from my previous best sale record ! I am so extremely happy, so I applied for this December's Comic Fiesta in KLCC.

    I am happy because just several days before, I spent several thousands on self-publishing my travel journal (and so I got it back almost right-away). I was so worried that I won't survive next month without taking any freelancing and only focusing on the Japan's travel journal. But, I think I can pay off all my bills for next month and still survive by working silently in my nest studio :D

    Note : I just wish more variation on the styling of drawings/illustrations instead of focusing in manga & anime though. It's good that the industry is here and beginning to get bigger, but I just wish more people would explore their own unique styles & strokes.


    The bad from the event :
    I had the worst case of food poisoning, just an hour before the event ended.
    I felt bad in the stomach, nauseous, I can't no longer sit at the booth (so I let Af took care of the booth). Finally when I felt really-really bad (kenot tahan anymore), I ran to the toilet and threw up badly (around 6 times in one shot). I pitied the girl next to my toilet, she had to listen to all the drama. 

    I asked Af to pack all the stuffs because I can no longer do anything. We left while it was still busy in the hall, I didn't even say 'good bye' or 'thank you' to anyone. The second time I threw up was when we almost arrive at our car in the parking lot. The third time was in the toilet in KL Sentral when we had to do emergency stop because I also had to go to the toilet so bad. And the final one was right in front of the clinic, near my house. 4 times in 1 hour, and because it was so bad, the doctor advised to take a shot to stop the vomiting. But the diarrhoea had to continue until all the bad stuffs come out from my body =.= 

    Yes, it wasn't my first food poisoning. But this was the first time that I had the worst case of vomiting until I felt like I had to surrender my body to the urges alone. I felt like I was possessed and my body was so weak and so foreign that I could no longer stand or walk. :F So I took a shot, drank a gallon of water, ate charcoaled pill and all the other little colourful pills the doctor provided. And I slept and rested the whole night.

    Af had some minor diarrhoea and Ma also had several times of vomiting and bad diarrhoea. The whole family ! There must be something we ate together (like the sandwich Aja made for all of us because we didn't eat anything else) :F Worst food poisoning ever.

    Work Related : First Self-published Travelogue

    Heyyy, it's been more than 2 months since I resigned from being a full-time Chief Designer at a local start-ups ! I've been really productive and excited lately, I don't think I've ever been this productive (maybe I've been collecting ideas and content for long). 

    New stuffs :
    • Book : Travelogue Melaka (is still in the checking-editing process by the publisher)
    • Enamel pin : 90s Game Nerrrd
    • Patch : Wandering Soul
    • Art prints : Moonrise Kingdom & Just Start
    • Self-published book : Eskapi - Travel Notes & Doodle !  


    The stories from this book/zine is not really new stuffs la (dah basi), plus, I already uploaded everything in this blog (in writings). These were travel notes and doodles while I went to Surabaya & Singapore last year, so the contents were already there waiting to be inked & digitized. I actually took 10 months to make this :D Hah.

    This isn't my first travelogue. I've been keeping visual travel notes since 5 years ago (if I'm not mistaken). So I have some from previous Eid, Beijing trip, homestay programs and stuffs. But they aren't worth my time to digitize (old lame stories, I cringed when I re-read it). 

    Anyway, long story short, I want to share my travel notes & doodles as an illustrator and someone who loves to travel since young. I want to make each journey matters (I already wrote it, photographed it, now I illustrated it). So I digitized this and self-published it. Hope you'll like it 💖

    You can pre-order yours now at : My Shop for RM 12 and even get a copy of "Things to Doodle" zine for free (if you pre-order it before the 3rd of Aug). 

    The estimated delivery time is : Mid August (they are currently in printing process) 

    Who is this book for ? 
    • People who love to travel, this is a fun + easy book to read about my short experience in Bromo & Singapore. 
    • People who love doodles & scribbles in book, this is one example of how to turn your experience into something physical, a different way to share with the world. 
    • People who love visual journals/visual travelogues, here is a sample from someone who loves to doodle and to record things in writing. 
    • Anyone who would appreciate the work of a local illustrator ! 

    About this book : 

    • Size: A5 (15 x 21cm) 
    • Printing info: Printed on 210 gsm gloss laminate cover, 128 gsm art paper content 
    • Pages: 22 printed pages (24 pages in total) 
    • Language: English + Minor Malay Printed in Malaysia
    • Self-published (no local publisher or editor or distributor) :F
    • All rights reserved to the owner.


    Upcoming travel zine : Osaka + Kyoto 

    The difference between last year's travel note and this year's travel note : the dedication and effort. In Japan, I really pushed myself to jot down something every day so I won't forget all the stuffs that happened. I also kept little stuffs (tickets, passes, stamps) to be added in the travel journal. I kept track of the foods I ate, and where I ate it (so people can use it as a guide as well). Plus, this time, I did all these in coloured version (because I'm getting used with illustrating & colouring ). I think so far so good 😃

    I'm excited for this one to be published next !

    Event : Pre Comic Art Festival KL 2017

    I'll be at booth A4 !

    Dewan Bunga Raya Campbell Complex (Near Sogo),
    Date : 29 & 30 July 2017


    Work Related : New Enamel Pin & The Process

    Sometimes I get overly excited and inspired, and when that happened, I create a lot of things. After the Uber project and several more little projects, I got some money to invest on new things. Things that I've been wanting to make but didn't have enough money.

    This time, I decided to create an iron-on patch series and enamel pin.
    Let me tell a detail story about how I ordered for these enamel pins first (because I love to share things that I wish other people would share with me T^T).


    The process : The 90s GameBoy 
    I actually used my old doodles from my sketch book. I searched for simple items that I drew, that have potential to be turned into patches/pins. So I found the doodles I made for the Malaysian Hobby Expo last year  :


    The designing, vectoring & colouring :
    • I found a small doodle of game boy with my iconic sleeping face in my sketch book.
    • I wanted to turn it into an enamel pin for 90s game nerds (like me). Usually when I think about enamel pins or patches, I think about the message/label it stand for. 
    • So for this one, I decided to make one that says "90s game nerds". 
    • Then I turned the doodle into a vector using .Ai CC 
    • I picked the simplest purple gradient colour (that I currently like for my works) - because I don't have time to experiment on different styles at that time.
    • I'm not sure whether the stroke thickness would be okay, so I just followed my instinct. 
    • I didn't even re-check the colour using Pantone code

    The supplier :
    • I searched for an agent through Alibaba (giving a list of request), had a short interview with more than 10 people in one day and I found one that I like !
    • I asked her some important stuffs that I needed to know (like what's the policy, what is the process, the rights, option of materials, etc). 
    • Extra thought : I was worried of being scammed because I have this wild thoughts about business people from mainland of China (like they would do anything for money - and probably not being honest, scams, etc). But I remember those things that I learned in high-school history, about how China man would travel across the sea for business, it is something noble and they would do anything to have a good business relationship with others. I also remember Alibaba's founder, Jack Ma, when he talked about his rules of success (watch here) and seeing how much he wanted to create Alibaba so the whole world can reach businesses in China - I think those were the reasons why I decided to try the website.
    • After I chose the agent, I gave specific requests on things that I wanted on my product.
    • She then gave me a quotation and asked me to prepare the file. 
    • Proceed with the order, I make half of the payment through Paypal and waited.
    • Almost 3 weeks later, I received an email saying that my products are good to go and need to pay the remaining balance.
    • After I make a full payment, she then posted the parcel using DHL and the item arrive after 3 days!
    This is how it looked when it first arrived (Individually packed)

    The material :
    • I wanted a black stroke instead of the normal silver/gold. So I chose a black nickel plating, most of local companies don't really offer this option. 
    • I also requested for a backstamp of my name 'azreenchan' ♥ because it looks cool (*extra $$$). I wasn't sure how small I should make while designing because enamel pins are small. I was worried about designing it too small until the machine can't get the details in its mold. I didn't see any problems !  
    • I also chose a butterfly clutch because my pins are small.
    • I chose hard enamel pin because I wanted the smooth shiny surface.
    • I love the size and heaviness. 

    The packaging & marketing pictures :
    • And because I really like the result, I think I want to make other enamel pins later (when I got other small investment) 
    • I designed the packaging (back paper) in the most generic way. So I can still use it for other enamel pin designs in the future and just use the same back paper. I didn't have any idea to design as fun as my wandering soul patch that I designed before this because by then, I was draining. I've been using too much of my creative juice that month.
    • I also designed some images for marketing purpose (because it is fun).


    Other things :
    • How much did it costed ? Although I'm quiet transparent with most of the stuffs, I'm not comfortable in telling the world how much I spent for this, so I choose not to answer. But roughly, you need to take into account : the cost of each pin, the molding fees, the extra requirement fees, and the international DHL fast-shipping. Everything in USD, so yes, it is not cheap for us Malaysian. But it is surely quite cheap for others with higher money rate. 
    • How much I love it ? Words can't express how grateful I am in trusting my instinct. I really love the outcome, the detailing and the quality. ♥♥♥
    • And I am super thankful for this chance of having fun days at home creating stuffs that I love. I hope every creative soul will eventually find their true passion and pursue their dreams (even how scary and risky it might look, your days will be packed with so much satisfaction).

    You can order my limited edition enamel pin :
    ( here - if you are local Malaysian )  and ( here - if you are living outside of Malaysia ).

    For my Patreons, thank you for your support & love.