Thursday, June 28, 2007

30 years ago...

An sms from a good friend of mine, which I've just received this morning...

"30 years ago,you were born. Today, you are a successful business woman, wife and mom of two lovely boys. Cherish the moments you have now. Have a smashingly happy birthday, Rafiqah dearie!"

Yup, today is my 30th birthday!! Like 3-0! Am I the 3 series already?!

Yup, yup.

Except for the "successful business woman" part, the sms is so true...
I am grateful that at the age of 30, I am happily married to a man who loves and understands me (and also the first to wish me happy birthday, all the way from London).
And are blessed with two handsome boys, who teaches me the meaning of responsibility and patience.
And are secured with a permanent job which pays me salary without fail every end of the month.
And a good helper to help me taking care of the kids while I'm away making end meets.
And parents who never fails to support me in everything I do (and sings a loud "Happy Birthday" song to me this morning while I was having my breakfast).
And a mother-in-law who treats me just like her own daughter.
And good friends who are there for me, giving me shoulder to cry on whenever I need it.
And cyber-friends whom I've never met but leaves me comments and visited my blog every now and then.
And a good health.

I couldn't ask for more (except maybe for a greater increment and a good bonus at the end of the year...hehe).

Although I may say, it gives me this teenie weenie creep when I woke up and realised that I'm no longer in my 20s and that no "3" is a sign that I am older. But it is also a sign of maturity. It's a signal for me to change myself from bad to good, from good to even better. So, there goes "Age is just a number".

Happy 30th Birthday to myself. Hope I have a good year ahead....

Ok, terkeluar sikit dari topik asal but tak lari jauhlah...
Everytime birthday ni, I selalu terasa yang I'm older than my hubby. Like I'm already 30, but he's still 29. He was born in September, like 3 months younger than me.

And talking about the 3 months gap ni, Ashraff was born in August so dalam surat beranak dia tulis "Umur Ibu semasa lahir = 27 tahun, Umur Ayah semasa lahir = 26 tahun". Hangin tau!
So, from then on, we all kena make sure that no more babies to be born in between 28th June and 15th September. That's why Aliff was born in November. "Umur Ibu semasa lahir = 29thn, Umur Ayah = 29 thn". Kan sedap sikit bunyinya...hehehe...

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The (quite) long interval.

What's up with me for the past two weeks?

Busy with office worklah, apa lagi. But that's not the only reason..
Other reasons are:-

1. Our computer network is out in the office for the whole of last week and yesterday. Kejap ok, kejap tak. So, I couldn't check email, browsing the net, blogging or blog hopping for like 7 days?! And office is the only place I could access the Net for free...

2. I have other blog which I just started. It's for my lil homie business, CreateMyOwnGift. Do check it out and leave your comment to win our personalized newspaper.

Guess that's bout sum up what's happening in my life for the past two weeks.

Oh yeah, one more thing. My Hubby is in London currently. He left like the last two Saturdays and only will be back this Sunday, which makes him not presence in our house for like two weeks. And I thought I'm use to not having him around because that's his line of duty, outstation and outstation again. But hey, this time around, I have to admit I miss him a lot. And it makes things worse having Ashraff to ask "Mana Ayah? Mana Ayah?" every now and then. Guess the whole family is missing him. Even my Mak and Abah told me this morn that "It's never the same without Fitri around".

Really look forward to seeing him this weekend...with his guni ala Santa Claus (ni dia yang cakap sebab barang banyak, dengan orang pesan lagi...).

So yeah, that's it. Nothing interesting. Just the same old routine...

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Ada Apa Pada Nama?

Ehem...I was tagged by Aliah's mom, so thinking I was quite free this morn, might as well I do it before the work comes rushing in.

REQUIREMENTS : Write about what or how or why you gave the name(s) to your kid(s). QUANTITY: 5 people
TAG MODE: Firstly you leave their blog and post link and add to the list below and secondly you let the blogger you want to tag know that he/she has been tagged by commenting in his/her blog or etc

Before we even have kids (or before I even pregnant), we have discussed on what kind of name to be given to our little angels. We come out with three requirements -
1. The name must have good meaning.
2. The name must blend well internationally.
3. The name must be short. The shorter the better. Only one word will do. And kalau boleh, that word could not be further shorten so much so that we are force to call him with his full name.

Why do we have such requirements?
Requirement no 1 - standard. Semua orang want a good name for their kids.
Requirement no 2 - Sejak kat sekolah lagi I dah bernekad akan bagi an easier name for my kids sebab some people have a hard time pronouncing my name - Rafizah, Rafikuah, Rafi etc. Urgh...I hate it. In Australia, I ended up introducing myself as Eliza coz that's easier to pronounce. Itupun depa pronounce as Elaiza. Urgh...I hate it too.
Requirement no 3 - my name has three words (including my dad's). Lenguh tangan nak isi borang UPU. Hubby's name has two words (his alone), so if I gave my kids another 2-word name, plus the bin/binti, jadi 5 words. Lagi lenguhlah tangan depa nak tulis.

Early in my pregnancy, we've choosen a boy's name that suits all the three requirements above. I guess because me and hubby wanted a boy so much, we ended up not looking for a girl's name at all. So, when my gynae told me that we're going to have a boy, we were thrilled and ecstatic.

So, a prince it is. And he was named Ashraff. Full name? Ashraff bin Mohd Fitri...hehehe...
In kitab, Ashraff carries the meaning "Yang Mulia". At first, we were contemplating on how we want it to be spelt - Asyraf or Ashraff. We then decided on Ashraff with an extra 'F' because at least kalau dia study overseas pun, people can still call him as Ash. Gempakkan? Hehehe...

All in all, it was an easy selection process. Me and hubby shares the same objectives and goals in this so it makes thing easier.

With our second one it's even easier.
Out of the blue, one day Hubby suddenly said "Kalau anak nombor dua pun lelaki, kita namakan dia Aliff nak?"
I replied "Aliff? Best jugak nama tu. Bolehlah...Apa makna dia?"
"Tak tahulah. Tapi sure baik punya..."
"Yelah kan? Macam Alif, Ba, Ta..."

That conversation took place long before I was preggy no 2. Early planning is crucial. Hehehe...
When I was preggy again, I had the feeling it's gonna be another boy. I have a very strong instinct at that time. Or is it because I want another boy just to accompany his big brother? Or another boy to keep me active and running and teaches me the meaning of patience? Perhaps.

And alhamdulillah, it was. And whether it was a coincidence or not, at that time I was preggy, my sis approached me and asked "Hey kak, dah ada plan nak bagi anak nama apa this time? Kalau belum dapat nama lagi, I would suggest Aliff."

So, Aliff it is. Nama penuh? Aliff bin Mohd Fitri. And up till now, I don't quite know the meaning of Aliff. Could not be bothered checking. But I think it should carry a good meaning.

Now, kalau ada rezeki, for no 3, I want a girl. And follow suit, also a girl to accompany her big sister. I've got names line-up for the girls. And I've briefly told hubby and he seems agreed to it. As I said, early planning is a must nowadays *LOL*. But I don't mind another active lad. Cumanya, we don't have any boy's names left in our list-of-our-children-names. So, if it's gonna be another boy, I think we would have a hard time in selecting his name.

So, ada apa pada nama? Everything!

msau the meaning of SQ and Kiki
shopping mum the meaning of Justin and Isabelle
Judy Chow Terry S
hannon Rachel
Samm Gordon and Malcolm
Sasha lil J Mott 2 Monkeys
Fatty Poh's Fatty Boy
Abg Z Abg H Princess & Litle D DadofFour Siti Khadijah, Muhammad Yusof, Siti Kauthar, Muhammad Ibraheem and Muhammad Umar
Minahsongeh Camillia, Camarina, Cqistina
IzreenFara NadyaAzureen
Lolyta Haris
Nana Sarah Nur Aliah
Rafiqah Ashraff & Aliff

5 people to tag:
1. Momma-Mia
2. Haariz's Mom
3. Zahra's Mom
4. Ibu Haziq
5. Aysh's Mom

Wanted to tag Eiseai, but I remembered she had made an entry about giving names to her two boys before. Maybe next time...

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Keeping Track of Discounts?

As I reached home yesterday, Mak gave me a piece of letter. It's not a letter actually, but more of a catalogue from C1mb Bank, detailing the list of benefits you can get by using / carrying their credit card.

10% discount at this, this restaurant.
Get your hair-cut at this salon, and get 15% discount.
XX% discount at this, this, this...bla, bla, bla...and the list goes on.


But how do I keep track of all these discounts?

Let me see, I've got few cards in my purse (credit card cuma satu, managed to get rid of the others)....And all come with a set of benefits and priviledges.

Most of the times (or is it all the time?) I regretted not using the cards I've got to make full use of the discounts offered. Not that I don't want to, but seriously tak ingat that this card entitles me a discount if I dine-in at their restaurants, or bought stuff from their outlets. Like bila dapat a catalogue like yesterday, barulah terasa macam "Eh, dapat discount ke kat sini? Le..baru je spend duit kat sana. Tak ingatlah guna card ni boleh dapat discount."

Kedai tu pun satu. They seldom remind us that you can use this card to get discount. Or probably the cashier itself pun couldn't remember what card gives what discount. So, it's all up to us. Kalau-kau-nak-jimat-duit-kau-ingatlah-sendiri kinda thing.

So, any ideas on how I can keep track of the discounts? Any system? I can't go on carrying few catalogues everytime I shop, right? That wouldn't be practical. Plus, kalau I go on reading the catalogue while "menjelajahi" KLCC for example *ala-ala baca peta kalau sesat*, orang kata minah ni kiasu pulak. But orang tak kaya macam hamba ni, discount penting beb...RM3 punya savings, lepas makan tengahari hamba untuk satu hari....

Friday, June 08, 2007

The many faces of Aliff

An attempt to take Aliff's photo for his passport:-


He got cranky with all the flashes of the camera. Tak boleh jadik model anak aku ni...

So, which one did we choose?

The first one. That's the best that we can get. And it was accepted by the Immigration Dept. Now, that particular photo is on Aliff's passport.

And the rest of the funny looking photos are on my blog-:)

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


I can't refrain myself from blogging. That's how addicted I am to this blogging world. Hmmm...

Ok. The scratching-head-and-pulling-hair-session at the office is finally over. Now I can breathe. Temporarily that is. I know my boss is just giving me the space to breathe a little before he starts overloading me with work again. Things are never the same again around here. Not until we get a replacement for a collegue of mine who just left the company for greater opportunity outside. And also another collegue who just took an unpaid leave for one month, followed immediately by 2 months maternity leave (and she doubt whether she'll ever return to the office). To top the pressure that is fuming here, another collegue is tendering for resignation end of this week. So, we are short-handed here. Very short-handed. Of course, the unfortunate ones like us are being pressurized to take up the portfolios of the resign staffs. Sakit tenat. And we do not know how long this will last *sigh*.

People moving out from the company is not the only 'epidemic' which took place in the office lately. Another 'epidemic' is a situation which I labelled as "Jambatan Roboh" - a situation where there were miscommunications among collegues leaving them not communicating to each other. Hmmmm...

What can I say about this?

I was one of those people who involved in this office conflict before. It all happened six years ago, the year I started working right after my graduation. I have to admit I was naive when I first entered the corporate world. Not only I was experience-less, I was also clueless about office politics. And the best part was, I thought everyone was a good-hearted, transparent, open minded and trustworthy soul. Little did I know that some people are back-stabbers, talam dua muka and busuk hati.

Because I was naive, I trusted most people. And I told them what I honestly think about almost everything - boss, other collegues, work. At the same time, I was also short-tempered and very sensitive. Semua benda kecik adalah besar. Semua benda nak masuk kepala. Semua office gossip mesti nak dengar. At the end of the day, I was haunted by negative feelings. And one slight mistake can caused my blood go upstairs.

During my first year working, I had entered an argument with this female friend (well, I thought she was a friend), leaving us not talking to each other. Orang kata terajak perahu boleh diundur, terlajak kata badan binasa.

Do I feel good? Not at all. I felt bad. You know the bad feeling that you got when you are not talking to someone, despite who's fault it is. It somesort of haunting you. You could not sleep well at night because you could not stop yourself from thinking about it. Yeah, that kind of feeling. So, I took the step to approach her and apologize but she was playing ignorance and did not budge. Thus, the thing prolonged. At least, I felt better because I've done my part.

I learnt my lesson from there. Thanks to my mother from giving me some good guidance and office tips, which I implement and practice till today. Mak, throughout her working life, has gained respect from her bosses and collegues. Even her bosses, called her Kak Adah. And if you know my mother, she's the quiet type. Tak banyak cakap, lebih banyak berfikir and senyum. I can't even remember when Mak actually nags at me. She hates nagging, coz she thought nagging uses lots of energy with little result.

Anyway, back to Mak's advices, she told me that in the office you have to be cautious in every move you make. Try to limit yourself from delving into other people's personal issues, or in other word, stop gossiping. The least time you poke your nose into other people's business, the better you will be. After all, it is not work-related, so tak tau pun takpe. But if you want to listen, then do as it says - just listen. Jangan tokok tambah dan jangan menyampuk.

Mak also told me that should there be any person, say Mrs A, who confide in you about other people, for example Mrs.B, just listen. But keep your mouth shut after that. In other words, don't go and sampaikan cerita itu pada orang lain, or worse still, sampaikan cerita itu directly pada Mrs. B. Senang cerita, sampai-menyampai is a no-no in the office. It can make small issues bigger. And it might be trapped you in the end when people find out you are in the actual whistleblower. You'll ended up not talking to Mrs A and Mrs B.

From what I deduce from Mak's advice, it's better to keep our mouth shut and concentrate on our work. Of course you can socialize, you can enjoy listening to gossips (but do not gossip) but at the end of the day, just zip your mouth and act like you know nothing. If someone comes to you and asked question like "Betul ke dia tu macam ni, macam tu?". Just answer politely that you do not know and you don't intend to know, eventhough in actual fact, you have heard quite a lot about that person before.

Oh yeah, another good advice by Mak is not to leave your water bottle on the table, especially if it still contains water in it. Hide it. People could put microelements in it for some ill intention.

Now move on to my father pulak. There was also this one time when he told me on the way to office that "The work itself is not hard. What makes it hard is because you have to deal with human behaviour".

I completely agree with him. In work, you have to deal with lots of people. And as a front liner like me, I have to deal with clients that most of the times pushed you to the edge with their 1001 requests. And to get things done, you have to push other people too - finance people, HQ people (I'm in branch), legal, it. So, to make other people do work for you is not easy. You have two choices - be harsh and bossy type, or create a good rapport with them so they'll help you in return. I chose the latter. Get to know people. Make friends with them. Don't forget to smile eventhough they do not smile to you in return (orang ni kadang-kadang "urat senyum" dia putus). Write nice emails to them asking for a favour. Talk nicely to them over the phone. Don't forget to smile coz your smile can be 'heard' over the phone. Choose your words properly.

As for the first choice i.e. harsh and bossy type, that one can easily cause "jambatan roboh" with other party. They are lots of people like that in the office. And personally, I don't quite like that kind of style. Memang sakit hati kalau kena suruh dengan orang macam ni. They talk to you like you ni kuli diaorang sedangkan you are just the same level as them. Or even if you are lower level than them, that gives them no right to main suruh je orang sesuka hati dengan menggunakan perkataan yang kasar. I hate to admit, I was one of them before. Like I say, I'm short-tempered. But you tend to grow in age and maturity, so you have to adjust your way. I left this kind of behaviour long time ago. I'm happy with what I chose to be.

But I'm not happy bila I yang kena herdik atau disuruh seperti kuli. If someone did it to me, I'm pissed of. Kalau dulu, I akan jawab balik, with equal intonation and choice of words. But now, I chose to keep quiet. And do what is asked to do. I was this type of person once, so I know how they actually behave. Orang macam ni panas cepat, sejuk pun cepat. So bila dia dah sejuk, dia akan datang kat kita, cuba cakap dengan kita. Some did apologise, but some just cuba berbaik dengan kita semula sebab dia tau dia dah terkasar bahasa dengan kita. So if they did approach us, talk to them nicely like nothing happens. Try to smile eventhough your heart bleeds. Or if you are bleeding badly inside and couldn't face this chap, perhaps you couldn't give them any feedback initially, but don't prolong this matter. The next time she/he tried to talk to you, do talk to them in return. Or if dia dah malu nak approach kita balik sebab his/her first try was a failure, then you go and make the move to talk to him/her. Or write an email to her. If she/he is your friend, perhaps you can tell her that you are hurt by what she says and give suggestion on how she can improve things. Some people can accept this, if they are cool enough. If we do not take necessary steps, then 'jambatan roboh' situation will continue. And you don't actually feel good after all.

Mak also told me that it takes two to tango. It takes two people to get involve in an argument. And it takes two people to mend things over. If any of the two people is jenis yang berkeras hati, sampai bila-bila "jambatan roboh tidak akan dibina semula". I guess that's what happened around me here. "Jambatan roboh di sana-sini". I harap I takkan terjebak in any of them....After all, we spent more time in the office than at home (minus the sleeping time that is). So, you tend to see the people in the office more than you see your loved ones at home. Thus, try to minimise the probabilty to get involved in office conflicts. It can make yourself feel miserable. I tau, I pernah terjebak sebelum ni-:)

Friday, June 01, 2007


I'm taking a 10 mins break from my very busy schedule. Busy sangat2 cam rasa nak pengsan.
This week alone, twice I left the office at 10.30 pm. Sampai2 rumah, bebudak dah tidur:(

And I think this busyness will go on till next week (hopefully). So, I am disconnecting myself from the blogsphere (and the internet) and hope to return to the cyberworld once this commitment is over. Please pray for my return...(cam bagus je bunyinye).

To my friends, whom I have not reply your email or not returning your call, or not visiting your blog, I'm sorry. InsyaAllah, I will catch up with you soon...

So for now, Rafiqah is in hiatus...chow...