Dear Mr Wonderful
On 31 March 2014, boredom visited me. So at 8:00 pm, I found myself sitting inside my walk-in wardrobe and staring at my clothes. Boy, do I have a lot of them! Despite my few trips to Salvation Army, Vinnies and Good Sammy to drop off some of my ‘unwanted’ clothes, the ones sleeping in my closet could easily last me for a year.
Since it is the first day of the month, I decided to challenge myself, and the challenge is to have a ‘not to buy’ list for 6 months to lessen the guilt of owning too much. It will be tough but an unprecedented goal in my life.
My ‘not to buy’ list is as follows: eye shadows, blushers and lipsticks, cardigans and knits, belts, leggings, jeans, jackets and coats, tops, dresses and shoes (I know!). I have a plethora of these items sitting in my closet and I have not even used all of them. My goal is to make the most out of the 6 months to wear them and get the value out of them.
I often hear myself saying under my breath that “I have nothing to wear” or “I don’t know what to wear” whenever I am getting ready for work or attending a social gathering. These words are too familiar. The truth is, I have plenty to wear but I think my subconscious mind is constantly reminding me (whenever I enter my walk-in wardrobe) that I need more things so I could satisfy my shopping craving.
To help me succeed the challenge, I told my friends about it and I am glad I did as they’re are supporting me. For example, when I went for a leisure (cardio) window shopping exercise with a friend, I couldn’t help but pick up a top from one of my favourite shops. He then asked me whether buying a top was part of my list. I said yes and, without hesitation, I returned the top to where it belonged; on the clothes rack. That was bitter sweet, but I felt brave and more determined to continue with the challenge. Maybe I can do it! No. Strike that. I can do it!
I am obsessed with these Cotton On pants. I got them for $10.00 at Cotton On outlet store in Harbour Town, Perth. They are my new wardrobe best friend when I struggle to come up with something to wear. Comfortable. Stylish. No fuss.
I can wear them with my flats or, if I want to be a little fancier, my heels. A simple t-shirt, a razor back singlet or a lacy top goes well with these pants.
A definite must have for your spring/summer wardrobe.
Dear Mr Wonderful
I had a great morning walk on the beach. What have I been missing out? I don’t know why I’m afraid of getting my feet wet. I should do this more often.
Scoreboard: 2 wins for me. Nil to Fear.
Pastel colours can be your bestfriend during a hot day because of the pleasing and calming effect on the eyes. So if you think the day is going to hit boiling point, you know it’s time to grab those soft pinks and baby blues.
This blog entry is dedicated to my brother and my cousins.
Dear Mr Wonderful
Two years ago, my brother and cousins told me that I will not survive kayaking. Their reason was simple: I am too weak and too lazy to paddle my own kayak. As you know a kayak is a small, human-powered “boat” that needs to be manually propelled by a double bladed paddle to enable the kayak to move.
The thought of me doing manual labour – such as paddling - makes people nervous.
As a great start to my 2014, I decided to defy the definition of myself as a weakling. Armed with enthusiasm, I tried the art of kayaking.
I hopped inside this kayak. It was red, shiny and wobbly. My kayak ride was at 3:30 pm on a Friday, and by this time the waves were so strong that my kayak was swinging relentlessly from side to side along the shore. I squirmed because it brought back a dreadful memory of my beach experience. When I was young, my grandfather took my brother and I for a short dingy ride on a beach near my grandfather’s house. He decided to leave us for a reason that until now I still do not know why he did that. Why would you leave your grandchildren on a dingy? After half an hour, there was no sign that he was returning. He has forgotten about us! He wasn’t coming back. I saw the tide rising and within that half hour it had somehow pushed us further from the beach. My grandfather didn’t even put an anchor or any object that would at least stop the dingy from floating away. The dingy was the most untrustworthy dingy I had ever been on. I didn’t want to move because the thought of the dingy capsizing meant trouble for me and my brother. I did not know how to swim, and so as my brother (at that time). I was seven and he was three. My brother was a chubby kid and I begged for him not to move because I was fearful that his weight would trigger the dingy to capsize. Luckily, a family friend saw us. I was almost in tears. My body was as stiff as a bamboo stick because of being scared for half an hour. I thanked the angels for sending this friend to save us from being a washed into the ocean.
The gushing waves to the shore snapped me back to reality after my momentary relapse from that awful childhood memory. While I believed for a second that I was getting over with that, more undesirable thoughts came running through my mind. My heart was pounding so fast I felt like someone was dribbling a ball inside my heart. What if I fall off the kayak and into the water? I don’t know how to swim. Who will save me? My brain was sending exaggerated messages to my whole nervous system; I was on semi-panic mode.
“I wouldn’t drown”, I said to myself. Drowning wouldn’t have been an issue for me because I wore an oversized life jacket. Besides, there was a little kid (I believe he was about 10 years old) frolicking in the water with his boogie board so I knew he would be able to save me.
I was already inside the kayak and that was why I was determined to at least move an inch. I needed to master the art of kayaking if I wanted to challenge the misconceptions of myself as this lazy little Asian girl. A spectator came and offered to push my kayak. I said yes sheepishly, and quickly said to Mr Stranger if he could push my kayak within the shallow area of the beach. He laughed and said that my kayak was on shallow waters. Fair comment. He was standing beside my kayak and the water only came up to his hips. I nodded and said “I’m ready”. Off I went.
The good push from Mr Stranger gave the kayak a smooth start. The cool breeze touched my face. It was pleasant until, 5 seconds later, when a blimp of swell interrupted my short reverie, I realised that I didn’t know how to paddle. Worse, I didn’t even know how to hold the ore!
I could hear my friend from the background, as my kayak bounced amongst the waves, shouting “Left if you want to …” “Right if you want to..” I got more confused because I couldn’t distinguish the difference between my left and my right. So I just nodded for the sake of nodding. Worry was painted on my friend’s face.
I breathed in. I breathed out. How hard can it be to determine my left and my right? I had to concentrate or else I will be kayaking in the middle of the ocean.
So I swung the ore to my left followed by a couple more left strokes. I felt my kayak moved into the direction I wanted. I paddled to the right, and then to my left. I noticed that my kayak turned parallel so I continued with the left and right paddling motion until the kayak was smooth sailing. I was paddling like an Olympian! Everyone out there saw me sporting a beaming face.
Although I was on shallow waters and my kayak experience lasted for only half an hour, the fact that I still pushed on, paddled away and did not succumb to my fear of being near the water meant a lot to me. My kayak experience may not be as rough, challenging and exhilarating as the photo above, but the effort of kayaking on my own and enjoying every minute of it was bliss.
Scoreboard: One win for me. Nil to Fear.