My birthday was 3 days ago. Gosh, I'm a year older now! Haha. I thank Allah that brought me this far in life. Without Him I'm absolutely nothing! 

I didn't have a birthday celebrtion at all believe it or not. Frankly, I am completely okay with that. I don't feel depressed or like a loser which is quite surprising. Before this, I always had something plan up for my birthday months in adance .... every.single.year! If it doesn't happen according to plan, I'll get depressed. This year, I'm not depressed. The birthday wishes that I got from Whatsapp and Facebook was enough to make my day! 

This year, I just don't give much thought about my birthday because I think me being alive is already more than a blessing that I usually took for granted. I don't mind about what others should do for me. Not anymore. If people do something nice for me... I'll take it as a bonus. If they don't, I wouldn't hold it against them. Be it family members or friends. 

This makes me wonder. Since when I changed. But I like this change. It's a good change. I feel like I'm much more at peace with myself. I think ... the less I give some thoughts about things that doesn't do me any good...the better I treat yourself. I do notice litle by little that I changed in the last 12 months. Emotionally and spiritually for the most part. I guess this is the stage in my life where I begin to "figure my own self" more and more. I don't have much of this "internal rage" inside of me too. The one that eats me from the inside. Not that it's not there but somehow it is almost non existent.

Ok, I guess I better stop now. Moving on, I hope I continue to grow. Continue to be a better person. A  better daughter. A better big sister. A better friend. A better listener.  In Syaa Allah. 
My sister and I at the start of the race.
I've returned to KL Marathon this year. I've signed up for this event like months earlier thinking that I have a lot of time to prepare me for a 10 km run. Haha. Truth is, I did not fully prepare myself for long distance running. Just don't ask me why. So, on race day which was last Sunday, I just thought ... just run. It's only a 10 km race. What could go wrong right? My plan was to just run really slow in a comfortable pace so that I will make it till the end. 

Did my plan work? Oh yes, it did. Haha. My run went well for the first 5 km. I just ran and ran comfortably ... sometimes I slowed down to a walk to take a sip of water from my water bottle and continue running. My sister was my buddy the whole time. Another reason I ran at a slower pace was to avoid any major injuries to my muscles or ligaments. I hate recovering from I want to stay injury free this time. Hihi.
PictureThat's my finisher medal
Buuut I started to feel some pain in my feet at the last 2 km which was something that I had expected. Just a bit of a nagging pain but enough to waive away my concentration from runnning. So, I ran a little slower. I did feel a bit sluggish here but I keep reminding myself to keep my back straight all the time and not to slouch. Gosh, that was such an internal struggle! A struggle that was way harder to keep towards the last 1 km of the race. 

At the last km of the race .. I was struggling between running and walking. Part of me want to run but when I ran ... I feel like I'm going to faint anytime soon. So I returned back to walking. Slowed my pace a little bit. Last 500 m of the race, I was still walking. Only like 100 m to the finish line run did I ran and end the race without much of a drama. Haha. 

I was soooo hungry when I finished the race. I din't realized I was hungry until I was given a banana by the volunteer. I gotta say that I've never been soooo happy to see a banana in my life! Haha. I chomped down on 2 bananas straight away. Oh yea, of course I got the finisher medal. :)

I really gotta say a huuuuuge thanks to my sister. Her pace was much faster than I am but she did slow down a bit for me to keep up with her the whole time. So her presence gave me a bit of relief that I can do this although I didn't do proper training for the longest time! It's good to know that if anything bad happen, she is there to help.   

This was my second time at Putrajaya Hot Air Balloon Fiesta. The main attraction is of course the hot air balloon in various shapes and sizes. My first time at this annual event was last year. It was a big disappointment for me because it rained the night I went to watch the Night Glow event. It rained so heavily that Night Glow event had to be canceled! 

So, I prayed hard that this year there is no rain during Night Glow show. My wish wasn't totally answered though. It drizzled a bit that night. Ok, more on that later.
PictureA balloon in a shape of a cone ice cream taking shape.
Now, what is this Putrajaya Hot Air Balloon Fiesta all about? Well for me, it is just another excuse to bring my friends and family for a good fun time watching balloon up in the air - which doesn't happened often in a year. Heck, it only happened once a year in Putrajaya, Malaysia! 

Besides the balloon as the main attractions, there are lots of other things to do during the course of this fiesta which usually last for 3 days. You can have a picnic nearby the lake, tethered hot air balloon rides (very popular), kids play area and last but not least the most anticipated event  - The Night Glow. 

I definitely came here for the Night Glow event. My sister who came each year for this annual event (she lives nearby Putrajaya), have so many things to say about this Night Glow. How awesome it is ...interesting..bizarre ..bla bla bla. So, I decided to come and have a look...that was last year. But the rain spoilt it! 

There are many balloonists taking part at this year's Putrajaya Hot Air Ballon Fiesta (as always). I think the most bizarre balloon was the one from United Kingdom. It is a hot air balloon in a shape of a man on a super bike. Sadly, I didn't get to see it in action. Oh well, perhaps next time.

Now my story of how my wish wasn't totally answered is here. I arrived in Putrajaya around 5 pm and the there was dark clouds hanging over. Uh oh, not a good sign at all. It may rain but I was still optimistic that things weren't going to be so bad. I crammed myself into the crowd waiting for the hot air balloon flying show. True enough, not long after, rain starting to fall lightly. Noooooooo. But the crowd didn't move a bit. So was I. 

Slowly, a few balloonists came in and set up their balloons one by one.  The first one was a balloon in a shape of a cone ice cream. Why oh why?! At that moment I suddenly crave for a chocolate cone ice cream. Damn! Haha. Then another was inflated and then another one. So one by one fly over the sky of Putrajaya that evening. i watched in awe. This was my first time seeing a huuuuge balloon being inflated. 

Right, now to the highlight of this whole fiesta - The Night Glow event. It is where the balloons are lined up one beside another and it'll glow following the music that was being blasted. No idea what I was talking about? Watch this video. 

Tips to get best view during this Putrajaya Balloon Fiesta.

  1. Check the event itinerary first before going so that you know what time a particular show starts. You can their official website here
  2. Get there early so that you can secure the front unobstructed-hot-spot. Looking at the balloon while your view is obstructed by tall trees is not my idea of fun. 
  3. For flying show, I suggest you come for the morning slot. The weather is much, much more forgiving in the morning and the natural lights are superb. Perfect for those who is thinking of bringing their DSLR along.  
  4. For the Tethered Hot Air Balloon Rides (RM20 per person). Well you have to queue really early for this one. It is very very popular and some people queue up before 6 AM to try to get the tickets! Some even earlier than that!
So, yeah next year I'll sure come again. I hope I can wake up really early for the morning flying show. :)
Haze in Kuala Lumpur reached unhealthy level few days back. Gosh,how suffocating the air was. There was burning smell and it is really not healthy to breathe that kind of air. But can't help it, I still have to inhale it, don't I. My company distributed the N95 mask to all it's employees to protect ourselves outside. Wearing one of this outdoor is really not coolI must say. Haha. 
Kuala Lumpur and other parts of Klang Valley still a bit hazy today. Although the level have gone down (yay!)  after it rains yesterday and this morning. So, it was such a relief to have the air finally clears a bit. 

The thing I hate the most during this hazy season is apart from not breathing good air is ... I can't spent time outdoor doing the thing I love which is run. I miss running in the outdoor. I wish I can do so very soon. 

Some of my friends got sick during this season. Oh, haze usually happens during the driest season in Malaysia. So we don't only have haze problem but heat and water problem too. My friends who got sick, they got fever and also headache. So, this is not only a time to stay indoor but have to drink lots of water too to keep one hydrated. 

So my advise to all of you is to stay indoor as much as possible. Make sure you drinks lots and lots of water.  I really mean LOTS of it. For me, I consumed as much as 3 liter of waiter daily. Sometimes even more. It helps me beating the heat a bit. 

Let's doa that the rain will fall more often and this hazy days will soon end. :)

I've been searching for almond milk for ages and finally found it at a nearby grocery store. I don't know if I hadn't searched hard enough but yea, I finally got it. Yes! Why do I bother looking for almond milk? Well, read on!

First of all I have a high bad cholesterol level. Not too alarmingly high but still a little bit off the scale. Doctors have advised me to reduce it otherwise the level will be getting higher and I will have health complications later in life. So, no! I want to be a healthy old nut. Haha. 

So that brings me to oat and almond milk. Oat has been known to reduce cholesterol level and can be easily found in any hypermarkets or grocery stores in KL. Almond milk howeverrrrr, is a little hard to find. So, I was soooo happy, I felt like jumping when I finally found it - not too far from my house ... and I've been searching for it high and low - duh!

What is so special about almond milk? 

Yea, so what is sooo special about this almond milk huh. Good thing is, almond milk does not contain cholesterol (Yay!). So, when there is no cholesterol, there is also no chance of me increasing my cholesterol level. Just so you know that taking oat and almond milk alone will not help reduce bad cholesterol if you don't watch what you eat other times.

Other reason why I chose almond milk over cow's milk is that it doesn't upset my stomach. Almond milk doesn't contain lactose. So, I'm a happy girl because I don't have gas problem after consuming it. 

There are lots of other benefit of almond milk. But the two I mentioned above were the reasons why  I personally prefers almond among all other types of milk out there. 

Ooo yea, one more thing I forgot to mention. Almond milk is low in calories too and that only means I'm not going to gain much weight from consuming almond milk almost daily. :)

How do I consume almond milk?

Good question. My favorite way (and the easiest) is to soak oat in almond milk overnight. I also throw in chia seeds and a bit of cinnamon in the mix. Keep the mix in the refrigerator. The next morning when I'm ready to eat it, I top it up with banana or blueberries and pour a little bit of honey for some sweetness. I can't really eat the mix without honey in it to be honest. So yummy and healthy! Give it try!
I'd say it's about time! I believe many of you still holding the old driving license which is basically a piece of paper with all details on it then the paper is laminated with plastic. In fact, this driving license has been in used in Malaysia since 1989 without any upgrade! That's 25 loooong years! 

So, last year in around July Jabatan Pengangkutan Jalan (JPJ) has introduced new driving license with improved security. Gone were the days where your driving license needed to be laminated. Now, the new one looks and feel pretty much like your Mykad. 

And starting from July last year, anyone who has to renew their driving license will get the new one at the same fee. Yes, the fee is still the same! You don't have to pay any extra money. Thing is, you can only get it directly from JPJ offices nationwide. You can't get this if you renew your license at any Post Malaysia branches...yet. There, you will still be issued with the old type of driving license.
That's my new driving license. The expiry date will be adjusted to your birth date.
It doesn't just look and feel better (sturdier plastic) but have higher security too. Your information on the card is protected with High Secure Hologram. So, when you hold it in your hand, you'll notice the hologram of Malaysia and JPJ logo. A sign that your driving license is a genuine one. 

Getting the new driving license is quite a breeze.

I think this only applies if you renew the license at any UTC  center. I went to the one closest to my place in Sentul and I've got my license in about 35 minutes from the moment I took waiting number until the new license is given to me. Don't bother going to JPJ center in Wangsa Maju. Just too may people there and the queue is ridiculous! I know because I went there to try to renew my license. 
Back to UTC in Sentul. I went there after 3 pm on a working day. I actually went a few days earlier but system was down so they couldn't do any transaction. Darn! So, when I went there again, thank god the system is working. 

One you arrive at the ground level of the UTC Sentul. Take the elevator up to the 3rd floor. Go out the door on the left. You'll see Post Malaysia first. Then JPJ right right next to it. Easy peasy!

So there weren't much of a long queue at JPJ UTC Sentul. When my number was called, I went to the counter. Pay the necessary fee for my license and the expiry date will be adjusted to my birthday. This is compulsory and I think it is a good move too. Easy to remember when to renew my driving license next time! 

Then I go and placed myself in a short queue in front of a door.
At first I was clueless as to what I have to do after I pay for my driving license fee. The person there told me that my name will be called to take a picture. But I have a feeling that this wasn't the case as I saw a short queue forming in front of a door. I peeked inside and immediately understood that one has to go inside the room to get their pictures taken. Just follow the queue and enter one by one. 

You have few options when taking picture. If that day is your bad-hair day. Hehehe. You can opt for your picture to be taken from your Mykad. Or you can bring your own passport sized picture for it to be scanned. If you are absolutely gorgeous (hate you :P), then just take your picture then and there! Since I'm not the gorgeous type, I brought along my passport sized photo. 

Once the picture has been taken or scanned in my case.I walked out of that room. Wait outside for about 5 minutes. Later, an officer came out of another door and called out my name. I approached him and he handed my new driving license. Yaaay! I got my new driving license in my hand.

Ok, I have a new driving license. Big deal?

It is kind of of a big deal. Apart from the improved quality and security, the new driving license now has dual language. One is Bahasa Malaysia (of course) and the translation in English. So, this new driving license is accepted internationally. If you are a traveler like me, then it is a huge deal as I no longer need to obtain international driving license in the case that I want to drive overseas. 

Oh, if you simply want to upgrade to this new driving license but your expiry date is not yet due, please note you can't do so. You have to wait until the expiry date is due to renew and get this new type of driving license. A reminder though, for now you can only get the new one from any JPJ offices and branches. Post Malaysia will offer this service soon  but I'm not exactly sure when. 
Yes, Morib which is roughly 75 km away from Kuala Lumpur has its own Gold Coast. I spent a weekend at Gold Coast Morib Resort with a few friends a few months back and here is my review of the place. (Sorry, this has been long overdue)

Gold Coast Morib Resort is THE only resort in Morib that has its own water park smack in the middle of the resort itself so far. Yerp, you read that right – a water park. But don’t expect Sunway Lagoon scale here. The water park at Gold Coast Morib Resort is just a nice decent outdoor water park that the whole family can enjoy and have a bit of a chill without worrying much about a huuuuge crowd and super long queue. Oooooh yeah! Definitely the kind of water park that I like. Read: short queue even on school holidays.

First, where exactly is Gold Coast Morib Resort and how to get there. Obviously, it is in Morib  - been known for the loooong stretch of beach overlooking the Straits of Malacca in Selangor. To find your way here is a bit tricky because the signage is NOT on every corner of the road. Unless you are soooo familiar with the area, I suggest that you navigate your way using your trusted GPS system or in my case, I use the handy app – Waze. Found my way there with no hassle at all! 

Mind you it was a school holiday when I went there. I arrived at around noon. Although there seems to be ample parking space provided but it was quickly snapped up later in the evening with a few tour buses too. Most that made their way here were families.

So my friends and I headed to the reception area for check in process. We were given access cards to our rooms and also wristbands to enter the water park. We bought our package from Matta Fair which includes 2 days 1 night stay, 2 days entry to the water park and 1 buffet breakfast. Sweeeeet!
Gold Coast Morib Photos
Room for 2 is quite spacious in my opinion.
Once we left our bags in the room, it’s time to check out Gold Coast Morib Resort water theme park. Each of us was armed with wristbands, ready to venture into the wet zone. Ok, here is a warning though. If you came here looking for a thrilling-super-speedy-super-high water rides – well, you won’t get it here. All you will get is a decent water rides and a swimming pool that your kids would absolutely still love. No wonder the guests that made their way here were mostly families with kids. 

One good thing when it comes to Gold Coast Morib Resort water theme park is, if you seem to lose sight of your kids, well you can find ‘em in just minutes! The park is not that big, just a few glances here and there, you can easily spot your kids somewhere in this water park. That’s going to be a huge relief huh!
Gold Coast Morib water there park
Gold Coast Morib water theme park.
What I really like about Gold Coast Morib Resort water theme park is the fact that you can repeat the rides that you like in literally no time at all. Unlike a water theme park of much bigger scale, you have to walk quite a bit to the starting line aaaaaand patiently waiting, waiting, waiting in the queue for your turn to again have a go at the ride. Such a waste of time isn’t it?! Good news, that ain’t going to happen here at Gold Coast Morib Resort water theme park. Rest assured you get to enjoy being wet without the hassle of waiting in that loooong queue.

Now, if you're not a fan of water park. Then there are a few other activities than can keep you occupied here. ATV was on our list. So, my friends and I head out to the sandy beach. Walked out a short distance to where the action is right next to the resort, just a couple blocks away from the water park. If I remember it correctly, I forked out RM50 for half an hour ride. We went round and round the broad sandy beach killing time and stopped here and there for pictures.  
Gold Coast Morib Resort activities Aktiviti
Other things that you can do here.
That night after dinner at the Korean restaurant there, we spent time chatting the night away at The Pier. We did came earlier that evening as the stated operating hour is from 5 pm to 1 am but when we went there, the bar wasn't open. It's not until that night that we went again that the bar opens and we can order some drinks and food. 
The Pier Gold Coast Morib Resort
The Pier Gold Coast Morib Resort.
The breakfast the next morning was just so so. I don't remember any particular dish that I particularly fond of. We headed back to the water park for one last round before we head back home.

It was a nice weekend getaway for my friends and I at this Gold Coast Morib Resort. It would also make a perfect weekend getaway for the whole family as well I think. Kids would still love water no matter how big or small the water park is. :)