Tag Archives: Design

The Year That Wasn’t Again

31 Dec

The never-ending year 2021 finally concludes today. I look back, and what a year it has been! I feel history has repeated itself, with the year being another year that fell short of expectations like 2020 because the pandemic has dragged on.

When the nation went into lockdown again in May, we were short-changed for several months to have a good year. And the lockdowns implemented under the Movement Control Orders (MCO) had so many versions, I lost track of it all.

But life goes on. With what we had experienced in 2020, we handled 2021 a little better. We became more accepting of the situation and were more productive, and the hobbies picked up in the year before continued. We also got vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus, and it was our passport to venture out (if needed) without hassle.

Towards the end of the year, I picked up another new hobby – felting. What fun this turned out to be! Felting is immensely enjoyable and therapeutic when I am not carving or crafting miniatures as it is a short and fast activity to complete.

Looking back, being home this time around wasn’t so bad because there’s so much to do at home, and I love it. There is no rush or fear but simply comfort and ease. As long as there is good time management, the days go by quickly.

M2 came back for her Summer holidays, and it was great to have her home. My cooking skills improved from last year, and there were many great mealtimes together at home as a family since we couldn’t go out at all.

Then M1 came home for good after completing her Master’s degree, and both of us are very blessed to have the family as a complete unit. But soon after, M2 returned to Ireland, and M1 started working. By the third quarter, we were juggling work, albeit not much, and playing golf when the country reopened to more activities.

But just when we thought things were improving with vaccination and economies opening everywhere, the world saw a new virus variant! The Omicron. The pandemic management globally was sucker-punched with this new development. Travels, activities, and economies were restricted once more, and many countries faced fresh lockdowns. When will this onslaught of the unknown ever end?

So we start 2022 with uncertainty again. I see no point in toasting the New Year for better fortune and goodness. Just brace yourselves to stay negative (Covid-wise) in a positive way, stay healthy, and stay safe. Goodbye 2021, I wouldn’t say it was the best, but we survived. Happy New Year, folks!

Painful Moments

14 Dec

What is worse than stabbing yourself with felting needles or carving tools? It’s slicing your finger with a blade. Shudder, ouch, and cry!

Yesterday I was at the office cutting some paper with a blade, and the accident happened. It was a bloody moment, literally. Stab pains by both my activity tools pale in comparison to this!

Snoopy to my rescue! 🥰

I am much better today, thank goodness. However, I cannot use my thumb to type on my iPhone as I usually use both hands. I hope this temporary disability is short-lived.

But I will stop the paper cutting for the time being and go about with pure design work on the Mac. As for felting, no stab pains will stop me from continuing this newfound enjoyable activity.

A New Hobby

29 Nov

M1 recently gifted me a new hobby kit – a complete felting kit. I talked about wanting to try felting but never followed through because I was obsessed with crafting DIY miniatures. She must have remembered and bought the kit for me to try. Of course, I was thrilled when I received it.

The latest activity to try

But I was also afraid to even start on it. What if I don’t like this new hobby? What if I do like it? Then, how do I plan my schedule? As it is, I have so many things to do to keep me busy.

There’s the crafting of DIY miniatures. Currently, I am at the tail-end of DIY project number 22. And there’s carving on balsa and meranti wood to make my Citizens of Gigglesville and gnomes of all shapes and sizes.

Let’s not even delve into painting, which I have my easel and several canvases sitting there collecting dust. Throw in the cooking, cleaning, golf, and occasionally, some design work – there’s hardly any time left. And now, with a new hobby venture, how do I divide my time? Tough.

Breaking 90

18 May

The past year I played so much golf, I improved by leaps and bounds. It was during the CMCO phase that I spent more time on the golf course than ever before. And that was because there was hardly any design work in the office, and outdoor activities, like golf, were allowed.

Towards the end of last year, my handicap came down, and there was a sense of achievement. I was also breaking 100 for the gross scores now and then. At least something good came out from the lockdown phases last year.

This year, there is further improvement! I have almost broken 90 as far as the gross score is concerned. I had two excellent games recently, returning with a score of 92 and 91 at two different golf courses, respectively. But this was before our latest MCO lockdown. While I am thrilled about my vast improvement, I wonder if I can reach this level again when the MCO is over. Only time can tell.

I Think It’s Jinxed, Part 2

3 May

I figured out why progress has stalled for DIY project number 13 or 12A – it’s my time management. I have been going to the office daily as well as playing a little bit more golf. As a result, there’s hardly any time to sit down to work on the project.

However, it is also procrastination to get going because of the stage where I am. I’m supposed to put stems for all the fruits and vegetables from the itty bitty beads. And it’s not easy, so I have been putting it off.

Look at the itty bitty pieces! Twirling the paper to make a long stem, then cutting it to make tiny stems. Crazy.

I keep telling myself it is not the superstitious jinx of the project number but simply my time management. As of now, I have set a new target for myself to get the job done. The other DIY sets have collected too much dust already.

The Perfect Cuppa

12 Apr

Two years ago, after months of serious searching, I finally found the perfect teacup to use with my Nessie and the Deep Tea Diver tea gadgets. And coincidentally, the glass cup is a whale-themed one, perfect for me who, once upon a time, carved Whales (besides my Gnomes and Citizens of Gigglesville). These days, there is hardly any carving done because I ran out of wood.

Anyway, the teacup comes with a ceramic lid and spoon and just nice to keep my tea hot. However, these days I hardly go into the office because of the pandemic and MCO restrictions. The glass cup and the two tea gadgets are left unused. Pity.

Nessie and the whale glass cup

DIY Project #12, Part 2

5 Mar

Lately, I can’t find the right opportunity to get going with DIY project number 12. Maybe because I can play golf again with the MCO relaxed, the need to kill time at home is not so essential. After all, a round of golf will take up almost half the day, whether it is a morning or afternoon tee-off.

Also, there are things to do in the office, and I have been going to the office. By the time we head home, the usual evening dinner routine and chores leave hardly any window for me to sit down at my little station to work on the miniature. Oh well, I am not rushing to complete it.

Almost done with this

But luckily, towards the end of last week, I had time as I did not play any weekday golf, and work at the office was complete. So I think the project is at the tail-end, and I should complete it soon.

The remaining decor items to complete
Project #12, a wonderful piece

MCO 2.0, Part 2

18 Jan

It’s coming to a week already that we are under lockdown in the MCO 2.0 phase. I must say this time we are better prepared. There was no panic-buying for grocery on our part because it feels normal, like what we have been going through. The only difference being no golf outing and no need to be in the office.

We have been good staying home this time because there are things to keep us busy. Hubby baked while I worked on my DIY project. There is also much to catch up on as far as house chores are concerned. I even washed all my golf shoes to the point of removing all the laces to bleach them white.

Giving the shoes some sun to dry!

Before this latest MCO, I did not have time to clean my golf shoes. I just rotated them because I was playing so much. Now, with this two-week break, the shoes are getting a makeover. Other than this effort, I am, of course, working on DIY project number ten. It’s coming along swell. I reckon I can complete it before the end of the week! Yay.

Almost done with project #10!

MCO 2.0

15 Jan

We were all expecting it, another lockdown. True enough, on Monday, the announcement came that MCO (Movement Control Order) 2.0 will be enforced from January 13 to 16, 2021. However, not the whole nation will be under MCO, only states with a high number of positive Covid cases. And where I live, we are affected, and thus, we have to follow the MCO rules. States that are faring better will be under either the CMCO or RMCO phases.

This lockdown is inevitable as the public healthcare sector cannot cope already with the surge of positive cases in four-digits for several days now. During this MCO phase, SOPs are more strict going out and being out in public areas. If possible, don’t go out.

So for the next two weeks, golf outings are out of the question. Maybe this is for the best. I can rest and focus on DIY project number ten that has stalled.

Design work in the office picked up a little during the last two weeks. As such, I couldn’t devote too much of my time to my whimsical project because I was tired-out when I got home. But now, with this forced break and no golf, I can focus on it. Perhaps I can complete DIY project number ten before the two weeks are up? We shall see.

Coming along swell!

The Year That Wasn’t

1 Jan

Goodbye Year 2020! What a year it turned out to be. I felt that it was a year that wasn’t – in other words, we were, firstly, short-changed for nine months in our lives and secondly, didn’t turn out so great as many envisioned it would be.

Before reaching this nice number, people, myself included, thought it would be a spectacular year. But alas, how wrong we all were. The Covid-19 pandemic created so much havoc in the world. And everything is never the same again.

Gone are the closeness and freedom that we took for granted with our movement with friends, society in general, and places we visit; in place, it is now constant caution, fear to a certain degree, and restriction.

For me, I felt my 2020 was just three months only, the first quarter of the year. After we went into lockdown in March, the next nine months, day-in, day-out felt like deja-vu. A new routine was born, and old habits had to give way because we had to learn to adjust to the new normal. Thank goodness we didn’t go crazy with cabin fever, and instead, discovered ourselves in many other aspects.

I learned to appreciate my friends, the home, and family more. Although work at the office took a beating to practically zero design work in March and April, it did not dampen our spirits. M2 came back from Ireland and had an extended six-month summer break. M1 stayed put, and we talked every morning to keep her company.

The new normal made both of us manage our time better to be more productive in other things. Hubby learned to bake, an unthinkable endeavor in all the years that I have known him, and I brushed up my cooking skills to widen the variety in our meals because eating out was not an option.

I also picked up a new hobby to keep myself busy after my Meranti wood supply for carving depleted by May. From June onwards, I started working on DIY miniature sets, and have completed nine DIY sets thus far in a spate of six months.

Another good thing that came out of this situation was my golf game, which improved tremendously. With downtime in the office, I was playing more golf than ever. After the lockdown eased, and golf was allowed because it is an outdoor activity, I was golfing up to four times a week! So maybe the year wasn’t that bad after all on the personal front despite being in deja-vu mode.

As 2020 is behind us now, it does not mean the pandemic is over. Far from it, in fact. We should remain vigilant, put on our masks whenever we are in public areas, and keep a one-meter distance apart to be safe.

A toast to a better year ahead – may 2021 bring better fortune and goodness for everyone. Happy New Year, and stay safe wherever you are!