Ok since I rarely write about work I decided to do so now cos…. the last two weeks have been pretty difficult!
We are launching two more Colonies in June this year – one in the city with a view of the Petronas Twin Towers at Star Boulevard, the other in Mutiara Damansara. Which means that both are currently in building phase.
My job is to basically lead the creation of all our spaces (from conceptualization to end). So I’ve been doubly busy this year since we’re running two projects at the same time. *screaming emoji wtf*
To give you a little background, my job is not just coming up with the concept or the design of the place. It’s everything involved in creating the space. Once Fatty and his team have signed an agreement with a landlord or developer, the entire thing is passed on to me.
My job is to:
- Deal with the landlord and building management to secure approvals before we start building
- Make sure our ID firm submits architectural and engineering plans for city council and BOMBA licenses and approvals
- Manage the given budget and make sure everything we want fits into it
- conceptualize the design theme for that particular space and come up with mood boards. That means I start pinning!!! I have lots of secret boards on Pinterest hahahaha.
- Review the designs presented by our ID. Revise until completely happy with it
- Make sure that all drawings are complete – mechanical & engineering, plumbing, elevations, 3D renders, etc
- Manage the timeline. I basically hassle everyone involved to make sure we finish the project on time. Each Colony’s renovation takes 2-3 months which usually amazes everyone
- Ensure the space is not only beautiful, but functional. This means also managing the IT (phones, internet) parts -which honestly I still suck at and have no idea what everything means and only have Nitaya to thank she seriously handles like 95% of it wtf; outfitting the kitchen if we have an in house cafe; installing CCTV ;and a security and access system
- Planning and choosing the furniture, flooring, textiles, art, and other decorative elements
My job is to basically hassle everybody to do things la wtf.
Up till now, I’ve completed three Colonies with the help of Hoe & Yin, our designer and architect. Colony 4 threw me a complete curve ball. From here on, Imma be very honest about the problems I face at work, the mistakes I made, and what I’ve learned.
I’m really bad at confronting problems that seem insurmountable to me
It’s also why I procrastinate so much wtf. So many followers think that I’m a god at balancing my shit. Lol please wtf. A terrible trait of mine is I tend to ignore a problem and hope it goes away, which obviously never works wtf.
Back in college it was so bad that whenever my bank statements arrive (and dealing with anything financial really scares me), I just tossed them in a drawer, unopened. O_O I never looked at them and this was the time before Internet banking ok. Ten years on, I thought I’d got this bad habit in hand but clearly I don’t.
I genuinely like our designers as friends… and I have trouble working with friends. When our design renders were delayed, instead of chewing someone’s butt out, I assented, in order not to create conflict. I was completely overwhelmed to be honest, by people who kept assuring me that everything would be ok. I wanted to believe it so I closed my eyes and convinced myself we would catch up later.
But when the design is delayed, it affects the costing, the drawings and overall timeline of course. We completed our costing late and then only realized that we couldn’t afford it. By then it was too late to revise without losing a lot of time or money.
Outdoor venues are really hard to pull off
For Colony 4, we secured the penthouse level of Star Boulevard, a gorgeous new building, that has a view of the Twin Towers. We also had the entire rooftop to do whatever we wanted with it. And our floor has double height ceilings.
The entire building is seriously good looking wtf. Double height ceilings, and floor to ceiling windows that let in tons of light. The rooftop was a dream too!
Before it turned into a nightmare wtf.
Colony 4 is our biggest project ever. Biggest floor area, biggest budget all. We get quite a lot of enquiries for bigger events that we can’t accomodate cos our event spaces are not big enough, so Fatty decided he wanted the rooftop to be a designated event space.
Our budget this time is a lot bigger than before so although I wasn’t completely sure, I went ahead with it. But here problems started mushrooming up. First, the rooftop was split level. Which meant that to create a decent event space that could potentially also cater for weddings, we had to level the roof. Which means we have to pour concrete to make the whole floor same level. Then we had to put in new flooring.
Then I started visiting outdoor wedding venues. I realized that nobody just had an outdoor space. With our unpredictable Malaysian weather, every outdoor venue also had a backup indoor space to escape to if it rained. So I explored the cost of getting a glass roof in, to keep away rain but still have a view of the city skyline. But glass roof cannot exist without walls ma wtf. So I have to build walls too, which essentially makes it a complete building in itself wtf. And building a structure like that is expensive! Then got structure already I need to install aircon and lighting or else everyone would suffocate inside. And IT access so everyone can IG stories. And we haven’t even started decorating the place and buying banquet furniture. All this not gonna pay for itself yo wtf.
There were other things too. Since the ceilings were double height, it basically meant we had to build everything up to double height too. Which means double the cost. T3T Since we had those double height ceilings, it seemed a waste not to build a mezzanine. Mezzanine means more structural work. Lastly, our design itself was just cost a lot to execute.
With everything included, the final came up to RM 2 million over budget. *screeching sound effect* *suffers heart attack*
It was bad wtf. Fatty was hounding me to slash costs, and Katrine and I were trying so hard to cut, but with what we wanted to do, there was no way we could fit it into the budget. Fatty was telling me I needed to penalize the designers and that we might need to scrap the whole project if we cannot cut it down to size. And if we did, we’d lose so much money cos we’d already begun work. T_______T
It was a dark day wtf. I had never been in this situation before and I realized that there were still so many things I don’t know. And I couldn’t see a way out of it. Cut my own salary ah wtf. I actually offered but Fatty said I siao wtf. Cos cut ten years also cannot cover lol.
Mansplaining is real
I would say partly cos of the digital and social media industries I’ve been immersed in are majority women, and partly cos I wasn’t woke wtf, but I’d never noticed “mansplaining” and its close cousin, “talking over women”, until I started working at Colony.
In contrast to advertising and marketing which is quite female dominated, construction is a man’s world. I’ve had contractors refuse to answer my questions because “she wouldn’t understand”, and building managers not look me in the eye, decline to shake my hand, but then become damn brother with Fatty. One manager even acted like I wasn’t there the whole time, until I asked him a direct question. Even then he replied without looking at me! I felt like tearing off his facial hair to be honest.
I’ve also had men brush me off with a supposedly reassuring, “don’t worry I’ll work it out with Tim” wtf as though my concerns don’t count, and I shouldn’t worry my pretty little head about it wtf.
Which helps me understand Katrine, our designer, a little more. I’ve heard stories about her being difficult and I’ve personally seen the way she rips into vendors lolol but it doesn’t seem like she has a choice. Maybe that’s what she has to do to get things done in this male dominated field. If I do this longer, I might be the same.
In the end, we managed to find a solution for the problem that’s even better than what we originally wanted. And we just have really amazing designers on board.
This is the design for our reception and concierge area! By 161 London.
And our lounge area. A pretty different style from what we’ve done so far. :))) What do you think guys?
So all’s well that ends well wtf. But Colony 4 wasn’t the only issue – I had some issues with Colony 5 too one week, and after I managed to fix them and keep on, Colony 4 started banging on my door fml. Hahaha it was one thing after another and we ain’t done yet wtf. That’s why I haven’t released any new blog post or video in two weeks. T_T
This blog post is really just to jot down what happened. And we’re off to Shanghai tomorrow!
This is a vlog post so you’ll see my vlog further down!
My birthday happened on a Sunday this year and when Fatty asked me what I wanted to do I was really stumped wtf. In the end I told him I wanna go for a massage and eat braised duck rice for my birthday LOLOL.
So that’s actually what we did. We tapau-ed braised duck rice and fish head curry (from kopitiams) and invited my family over to eat with the kids. Sieu Ee and Dawid came along too cos I think my Everything Buddy TM was worried I wouldn’t have a celebration this year hahahaha.
I spoke about this on my vlog but I’ll elaborate here a bit.
I think because it was my birthday, I woke up subconsciously wanting to have a chill day to focus on myself and just relaxing. Do my makeup leisurely in the morning, take some OOTD shots, read my Kindle, etc. Instead, I got two very clingy children, one of whom woke up on the wrong side of the bed or something, was defiant and had multiple tantrums throughout the day.
Fatty (bless him wtf) was doing his best to make sure I had a nice relaxing day but even then I was so fed up. And when I’m fed up I know cos I’ll spend more time on my phone than usual wtf. And I know you can actually see it in the video!
My stoned expressionless face and phone time is very obvious in this vlog I think. Even if we didn’t manage to catch much of the bickering, meltdowns, and disciplining, you can see it all through me hahaha.
I decided to post all this up (even though I look like a shit unenthusiastic mom) because I’m supposed to be an honest blogger ma hahaha. I’m keeping it real yo wtf. Everyone has shit days and social media is doing too good a job of hiding it.
So here. My day in which I felt like running away from the critters, which also happened to be my birthday lolol.
Every time I post pictures of my kids getting ready for bed, I’ll get DMs asking how I sleep trained them, followed by complaints that their own kids cannot go to sleep early.
To be honest, my first thought would be, why cannot? Most parents worry about their children’s diet – how much they’re eating and whether the food is healthy. But to me it’s equally important that kids get enough sleep, cos sleep fuels growth and development. And Fighter being so small for his age, I just want to make sure that he gets everything he needs in order to grow well. T____T
So yeah, my kids are in bed by 7 pm and usually asleep by latest 8 pm. I know some families have working parents who come home late and can only see their children at night. So I understand the need to keep the kids up a little longer so they can see mommy and daddy at the end of the day. I think in the end, all it boils down to is your family’s lifestyle and finding what works for you.
Since I get questions about the critters’ sleep all the time, I thought I’d do a sleep FAQ here for what we do.
what time do they sleep?
Ok so on weekdays, I’m quite strict with their bedtimes. Both of them have to wake up at 6.30 am for school (FTL) so by 6.30 pm they start getting ready for bed. Normally both are fast asleep before 8 pm.
what’s their sleep routine like?
From 6.30 pm, they start winding down! We wash up, change into pajamas and brush teeth. I read them both a bedtime story (picked by Penny) and then Fighter goes into his room to play a bit. I turn off the lights, turn on her night light while Penny arranges her stuffed toys in a specific way on her bed wtf. I give her a bottle of milk, she drinks it and usually falls asleep immediately. Sometimes she doesn’t right away, so I stay in the room with her until she does.
After Penny falls asleep, I go over to Fighter’s room. We read another book that he chooses himself, he tells me whatever he wants to say about his day, then he drinks his milk. He doesn’t fall asleep immediately so he brushes his teeth. Then I tuck him into bed, turn on night light, turn off lights, kiss him goodnight and leave the room. He goes to sleep on his own.
why so early?
They both wake up at 6.30 am on school days. On weekends they may sleep in until after 7 am but that’s about it hahaha. They also don’t nap anymore. On weekends and holidays though they usually sleep later, about 9 or more.
However, even before they started school they already slept early. Two reasons – we have a circadian clock and it’s healthier for small children and babies to sleep early; also sometimes I want to go for a dinner with just grown ups and it’s easier to put them to bed then I can go out and relax HAHAHA.
For a guide on age-appropriate bedtimes for children, you can see here.
when do you know to drop the nap?
When you notice that it is consistently difficult for them to nap at their usual time! Penny used to nap from 12-1 pm and then go to bed about 7 pm, but after a time, I noticed she’d struggle to sleep cos she just wasn’t sleepy. Her nap dragged on, and consequently, her wake up time would get later, and she ended up with a later bedtime.
When it gets harder for your kids to fall asleep for naps, it may be time to drop one nap. When it happened to Penny and she was already down to only one nap a day, I decided to just take it away. At first she’d get cranky about 5 something, and end up going to sleep at 6.30 pm. But that was ok with me too cos she’d sleep a good straight 12 hours at night.
I prefer that both her and Fighter don’t nap, so that when they sleep at night, they sleep longer. I notice that if they do nap, they end up going to bed much later, and the total hours of sleep they get is actually less.
my kid didn’t nap and he’s still sleeping at 11 pm!
I get this question a lot too. I don’t know your situation well enough, obviously, but I think there are a few questions to ask. Were they overexcited? Over tired? Kids are human, not robots. My kids don’t go to sleep at the exact same time every day, and neither do I wtf. If you stop their nap one day and they still sleep late, just keep trying. ^^ Sleeping late is a habit they have to break after all. As long as you stick to a consistent schedule for them, they should end up sleeping at the time you wish.
how do you get fighter to sleep on his own?
Actually I also just managed this the past few months wtf. Even though they have their own rooms, ever since they were babies, I’d either breastfeed them until they sleep, or sit in the room with them until they do. I never sleep trained them to sleep on their own. But they’re older now, and they don’t go to sleep immediately all the time. So end up I can stay in Fighter’s room for very long sometimes, and only get to eat dinner very late. This is not sustainable wtf.
So this is what I did. I asked Fighter why he wanted me to stay in the room with him, and he said cos he’s scared wtf. But he’s actually not cos when he wakes up at night, he gets a drink of water from a Thermos we keep in the room, and goes back to sleep on his own.
So I told him we can do it slowly. I usually sat on his bed while he fell asleep so every day I would move slightly further away. From the bed next to him, to the foot of the bed wtf. To an armchair in his room, then on the floor right next to his door wtf. Then I told him I would just be right outside his door, eating at our dining table, or in the living room, watching TV. I told him he could come out and check on me if he wanted but not too many times hahaha. And I’d go in and periodically check on him too. And it works! He pops his head out once or twice, but goes back in by himself and goes to sleep peacefully.
For Penny I don’t know if this would work wtf. Cos she’s way more stubborn and cannot reason wtf. But she’s still younger so I’ll give it time and try a different method if I have to.
any other useful tips?
- a consistent sleep routine is useful. For toddlers and small children who can’t tell time, going through the same routine every day (wash up, ready story, chat about the day etc) can be very calming and prepare them better for bed.
- decide what time you want them to sleep and stick to it. Don’t anyhow one day sleep at 9 pm, next day want to sleep at 7 pm. If you cannot sleep at erratic times, don’t expect your child to be able to.
- time their naps if they’re still napping. I did that with both kids. For example, if Penny always wakes up at 5 pm from her nap and only falls asleep at 10 pm, it means she probably only feels sleepy 5 hours after her last nap. So if I want her to sleep at say, 8 instead of 10, I make sure she doesn’t sleep anymore after 3 pm (5 hours before 8 pm).
- car naps are the worst wtf. I don’t know about you guys, but every time those two fall asleep in the car it wreaks havoc on their sleep. Cos they won’t sleep that long in the car, maybe max 15 minutes? But end up sleeping an hour later than bedtime it drives me mad wtf.
I realize writing this blog post that I may sound slightly anal about my children’s sleep and maybe I am hahahaha. It’s just that my kids, when sleep deprived, are very annoying hahaha. Cranky, grumpy and not fun to be around. Plus I don’t want their immune systems to be compromised by a lack of sleep la.
My methods may not work for everyone cos it really depends on your lifestyle and preferences. But hopefully some of my tips will help you if you’re looking to fix your child’s bedtime.
Leave me any other questions in the comments and I’ll try to answer!
OK this one I rush like sai to get it out before Chinese New Year actually ends wtf. Cos we got wish you happy CNY in the video ok so must make sure it’s still relevant lolol.
This Chinese New Year was pretty ok actually. I usually dread CNY – the rush, the preparation, the weather wtf, and the billion family obligations that make me feel like my time is not mine wtf.
But this year CNY was in the middle of the week and we got a longer break. We didn’t rush as much, we took a flight and avoided the horrific jam, and it was generally very chill with close family members.
Also, I’d planned to vlog for the New Year and my kids vlogged some for me! Hahahahaha. So watch this if only to see Fighter and Penny vlog LOL.
I’m back at vlogging! *everyone quiet cos how many times have I said this before wtf*
- my kids are the biggest fans of my vlogs WTF. They watch it on repeat constantly and….
- it made me realize that these are such good memories I have for the future. Last time I stopped vlogging cos I felt like I was too busy capturing moments to really be in the moment but I think I could get the hang of it. Hopefully wtf.
- Fatty got me a Go Pro for my birthday wtf. My initial reaction was ‘what am I gonna do with this!?’ I didn’t think I needed a new vlogging camera but…this camera finally has a stabilizer. So people don’t get headaches anymore watching my vlogs which is very motivational lolol.
So anyway I’ve decided to restart vlogging. And in addition, I will also write a little bit more about Behind-the-scenes of the vlog – what really happened, what happened off screen, and my general thoughts about things.
So this vlog was taken the week before Chinese New Year. CNY is a huge thing in the kids’ school since it’s a Chinese medium kindergarten and all the classes had their own New Year performances, so I decided to vlog it!
Penny’s four year old class did a simple Chinese dance that involved mostly clapping and jumping from side to side. You never saw anyone jump with so much gusto ok hahahaahha. At one point I noticed she even did a wiggle mid jump ok hahahaah.
Fighter on the other hand. :X He was one of the kelefehs – he said his role was “people in China” LOL and at certain points he looked a bit blur and had to be prompted by his friends fhl. But I am so proud of him cos he’s come such a long way since refusing to step on stage at all and crying when he saw me, or agreeing to perform but banning me from attending his performance wtf.
This time he was so excited to perform for us and asked us all to attend. So we all showed up – me, Fatty, Mummy and Fat Her Ooi, and even our helpers who were bursting with pride.
So worth capturing this ok!
Also I got hair extensions so this is the video debut of my new hair *self obsessed wtf.
As a parent, sometimes you get days filled with joy and smiles. And sometimes you get days filled with poop.
Saturday was one of those days for me FML.
We were happily eating dinner with my parents and brother, when suddenly Fighter said in a panicked voice, “I need to poo.”
He’d kicked off his shoes at the table so suddenly everyone was in a flurry trying to get the right shoe on the right foot, while Fighter pulled weird faces as he tried to control his sphincter muscles. Hahahaha.
I grabbed my phone and sanitizer spray in one hand, and Fighter’s fist in the other. We half walked half ran to the rest room which thankfully was quite near the restaurant.
Got to a toilet stall and he managed to get his pants down and sit on the toilet bowl in time.
But then! Calamity struck wtf.
See, he was sitting down, but his bird wasn’t down wtf. It was resting on his thigh in fact. So when he started to pee, he peed on himself WTF. Thankfully, it wasn’t a geyser wtf. But because his thighs were closed, pee was pooling on his legs T______T In a panic, I pushed open his legs. Clearly it backfired because the movement caused his pee to start spraying everywhere instead. @_@
I thought the worst was over when he finished but then he said very calmly, “Mommy my underwear is wet.”
I quickly cleaned him up and stripped off not just his underwear, but also his jeans which were both soaked. @_@ By this point, we were both just standing in the bathroom looking at each other. Fighter still had his tshirt, socks and shoes on, but no pants. Hahhahaahha.
I said, “OMG Fighter you have no pants. How to go home like this?” Then I started laughing uproariously. #shitmom
And Fighter started sobbing.
HAHAHAHAHA oh God. My family and I are the worst when it comes to toilet humor and laughing at other people’s misery (also our own misery wtf). But my son was crying his eyes out, so I swallowed my giggles and asked him, “Why? Why are you crying?”
“Because I don’t want people to laugh at me!” *cries*
*coughing to subdue laughter* “No way! Nobody is going to laugh at you!”
“How do you know?”
“Because only Mommy can laugh at you. If anyone else laughs at you, I’ll scold them.” Said while pinching my own nose so I wouldn’t laugh.
And he sniffled and nodded like the trusting lamb he is.
So that left the little matter of him being pantless. I certainly didn’t want to ask him to roam around without pants because he’s all of five years old and very aware of the concept of shame. But I knew what to do.
Other people might consider this a problem, but not to this family wtf. My kids bring the weirdest things out with them but that day Fighter had brought with him what would turn out to be the best solution to our problem.
Normally Doggie Dog Dog is always brought along with us, non negotiable one wtf. But this time, Fighter also decided to take along his old lunch bag which he called Doggie’s luggage…. packed full of Fighter’s own old underwear WTF. He said those were Doggie’s outfits.
So Fighter ended up wearing a pair of underpants formerly belonging to Doggie Dog Dog formerly belonging to himself. Hahahahaha.
To solve the issue of no jeans, I decided to just grab him and hotfoot it over to the nearest kids’ clothing store. We found a great pair of skinny jeans for him, and while it cannot be used for Chinese New Year anymore, it looks really nice on him, and most importantly, we preserved his dignity hahahaha.
But let’s backtrack a little. Doggie Dog Dog’s suitcase was back at the restaurant so I called Mummy Ooi to come save us. She came bearing the bag and a skipping Penny at her side.
While Mummy Ooi helped Fighter on with his underpants, Penny declared she had to pee.
So I brought her to the next stall, which had a squatting toilet in it. Penny’s new school has mostly squatting toilets and I’d taught her how to squat and pee so I wasn’t too worried about her. She got up and squatted over the toilet with ease.
Unfortunately, she didn’t back up enough so when she started peeing, her pee also missed the toilet with ease and hit my shoes and legs FML.
Luckily my shoes were relatively waterproof but still. *anguish* Some more had to remain calm cos I don’t want her to panick and spray even more haphazardly LOLOL.
Calmly wiped off her shoes, my shoes and my legs and then sprayed everything with our trusty Softaman spray.
And then we calmly walked over to Next to get Fighter his new jeans.
So thanks chudwens (how Penny says ‘children’) wtf. For giving me the chance to be covered in your bodily secretions. Also for teaching me unconditional love. Lolol.
As they say, shit happens. Especially with kids. ^^
Oooh can’t wait to write this blog post!
As you guys know *ahem* my job is to manage the build and design of every Colony location we come up with. So far we have two locations (KLCC and Eco City) and the third one is at KL Sentral.
KLCC design theme was ‘modern gentleman’s club’ while Eco City was ‘British Colonial’. Every design theme so far has been a luxurious blend of old fashioned concepts with a modern twist on it. The third Colony is no different!
This time we chose ‘Parisian apartment’. I personally love this theme ok lol. Many apartments in Paris are old, so they come equipped with grand old fixtures like plaster crown moldings and cornices on ceilings and walls. Contrasted with modern furniture, artwork, and plain wood floors, the effect is gorgeous. <3
The challenge however, was to adapt this concept to a 15,000 square feet space, as opposed to a cramped French apartment hahaha. The theme is beautiful in a small space, but when we did the artist sketches, the concept was too sparse for a space of our size. I’d removed our signature black and white checkered tiles for Colony @ KL Sentral cos I sien already wtf. But ended up putting them back in a different style to create that grand feeling that was initially missing.
For every location, we try to come up with a ‘Wow.’ For example, Colony @ KLCC’s Wow was the black and white marbled corridor.
For Eco City it’s these pink phone booths and canopy beds.
For KLCC, it was our signature black and white hallway.
I didn’t have a Wow for KL Sentral. *forced smile wtf* Like I’d said, we had to up the luxe factor here already and while it worked, it also looked like a standard luxurious place. Not that special wtf.
But then towards the end suddenly got a lot of lightbulb moments and inspiration! So let me take you guys on a virtual tour ahem.
Ohai iz me.
This is our main door! When you step out of the lift (we take up the whole floor) this is what greets you. Opted for a wrought iron gate for that grand feeling! Fatty said got The Greatest Showman feel hahaahha but no. This gate is inspired by Les Miserables (movie version) ok. Jean Valjean’s gate in his garden is like this hahaha. Cosette and Marius sing to each other through this gate please hahahaha.
On the left is our reception and concierge. Every Colony has a different color scheme and this one’s accent color is duck shit green lolol. The name very bad but it’s very beautiful!
Our signature black and white tiles are present in our main lobby – but in a different, jazzed up configuration.The pantry is towards the right of this picture, and you can see Nitaya doing her work at the pantry seating lol.
Here’s the pantry area! We don’t have an in house cafe for this particular location so to make up for it, we created an extra pretty pantry. Coffee and snacks are readily available, and coffee will be brewed by our community managers without you needing to do anything!
The cart in front is for snacks and desserts and was inspired by Laduree hehehe. It’s a Parisian theme after all.
Another view of the pantry. Behind the wall is a mid sized meeting room.
What the entrance looks like from inside.
This is our lounge slash event space! This space was designed to hold seminars and workshops or annual meetings (besides product launches and media events of course).
Our furniture is modular which means we can rearrange into whatever configuration is needed.
And for privacy and sound proofing, we have these padded foldable walls!
When closed tadah wtf. The panels are custom printed with this Japanese crane print. *hearts in eyes*
Comes with sound system and projectors of courseeeee.
The highlight of the event lounge is the mock fireplace. T_______T *caresses
Can I bring this home with me wtf.
Seemed a bit extra to pile firewood in the hearth or put electric fire there lolol. So we styled it with ferns and cork. I’m also looking for a piece of tree trunk to add to it! Let me know if anyone here got jalan wtf.
Now for the more business looking side of the office wtf.
On the other side of the pantry is our hot desk and reserved desk area.
The doors to our private offices. Posting this picture because I feel with this Colony, I got a lot better at identifying the little details that really pull a look together. And gives the place character!
So please note the cornices and mouldings framing the doors guys. Hahahah.
Each Colony location has a bigger conference room that can fit 14-20 people. This is KL Sentral’s!
One of our hallways. Beyond the fire door ahead is a special area – where all the Luxe Suites are located.
Each Luxe Suite is named after a former British colony.
Our Luxe Suites are scaled up versions of our private offices. They cost a bit more, but come with a slew of additional services, meant for people who are interested in the ultimate office experience.
For example, we have a fully ergonomic chair and desk for use! Can be fully adjusted for any individual’s height and preferences. And the desk has a wireless charging option so if your phone has wireless charging capability, you can just place it on the desk and it will charge. ^^
The suites are also automated. You can choose to control the light colors and brightness, curtains, music and TV via Google Home voice control, or an app.
Each Luxe Suite comes with a mini bar and fridge, and a lounge area to entertain guests. Plus a personal concierge service on call for anything a Luxe Suite guest needs.
Oh and my latest vlog! Has a sort of tour of Colony plus our usual day.
That’s about it! What do you guys think? *seeks for approval WTF*
You can check out our website here for free tours and if you need any questions answered! Our team is very prompt. If not prompt tell me wtf.
As a kid, education meant going to school, finishing homework, and following whatever the teacher told me.
I was really good at school. Just as well cos I looked like this LOL. I gave up all sorts of activities – taekwondo, piano, electone, swimming, Chinese, art class… The only thing I really stuck with was my studies.
I entered Year 1 (age 7) in a government school. The main medium of instruction was Malay and I didn’t understand a word. When we chanted the Rukun Negara every Monday, I heard the words undang-undang (law) and wondered why we were talking about prawns (udang) WTF. I had to sit next to a girl I knew from kindergarten who translated everything the teacher said.
By some miracle, I did well in my exams. Good enough in fact, that I was first in my class wtf. And still, cos I didn’t understand Malay, I didn’t know I had been announced first and Mummy Ooi didn’t find out until she came for report card day wtf.
So the bar was set. I was supposed to be clever, so my parents had high expectations, anticipating straight As and top class rankings. And for the most part, I fulfilled that. I scored straight A’s in all major exams, and also the minor ones wtf.
But I saw no significance is what I was learning, except that it was good for passing exams. I’d memorize facts days before an exam, vomit them out on the test paper, then immediately forget everything… until the next test.
It didn’t even matter whether I even understood the content, as long as I knew how to answer test questions. For example, I scored an A1 in Add Maths for SPM because I was so good at answering questions. I didn’t understand Calculus at all, but I could dydx the shit out of it. When I got to college though, Calc turned out to be a graduation requirement. College level calc actually requires you to understand the concept, and I nearly failed. -_-
I’m pretty sure that was the case for most of us in Malaysia. Now that I’m a mom, that’s not the learning that I want for those two! I was actually thinking a lot about the purpose of education, and I do think that education is not only about learning facts. Because today’s world is so different – information is literally at our finger tips with Google, so I think what children today need is not what to know, but how to know. They don’t necessarily need to know information, they need to know how to get the info they need, and what to do with it.
I asked this question on Instagram too! I don’t remember anyone mentioning they wanted their kids to ace exams, but I remember getting a lot of answers like learning manners, independence, sociability, kindness.
So here’s what I want Fighter and Penny to get out of their education.
The ability to solve problems
I am the worst at this honestly. When faced with a problem, my first instinct is to refer to an authority for answers. Because I’m so used to getting the right answers from my teachers and not having to discover answers myself. So yeah, I want my kids to be able to look at a problem, and think and find creative ways to solve it.
This gets me so much because I feel like 70% of people around us? Don’t know how to think wtf. Simply put, critical thinking is defined as the objective analysis of an issue in order to form a judgment, but I really feel that is lacking in Malaysians every time someone RTs a cyber trooper or sends a whatsapp message with some urban myth. It drives me mad honestly, when people don’t do some quick research and just jump on a bandwagon for something or worse, spread misinformation. I want the kids to learn how to think – to seek information, to be discriminating, analyze and then form a logical judgment. And to know when an opinion (even if it’s their own) is wrong.
To love learning and own their own learning
Like I’d mentioned earlier, I had very little regard for what I was learning in school. I especially hated Sejarah in high school, but when I got to college, I randomly took a class on Chinese history to fulfill my requirements. Surprise! I ended up falling in love, and majoring in Asian Studies with a focus on Asian history. In college, I finally understood the significance of history to how it affects us today. When I wrote essays and papers, I knew I was improving my writing, not just to get an A. I started to appreciate the effect of learning – the joy of unlocking new knowledge and knowing I was getting better and smarter.
And that’s what I want for my kids. To have the joy of learning, and not only when they go to a liberal arts college. And I want them to control their own learning journey without me nagging from the sidelines wtf.
The world today is so different from our parents’ time and it’s changing even more quickly. It’s going to get more and more crucial that children today learn the skill of adaptibility. As current jobs phase out and new roles develop, they’re going to need to know how to turn their hands to new challenges and tasks.
This one speaks for itself la wtf. I am again terrible at coming up with new innovative solutions to anything because I never tried and I wasn’t pushed to either. Fatty is actually excellent at this! I think creativity can be cultivated, it’s just that local schools are crap at this. So kids, please be creative wtf.
Humans are social creatures and nearly everything we do will involve other people, and forming and maintaining relationships with people. To succeed at anything, we will likely need to know how to get along and work with others. I hope my children will have empathy and know how to read others right and treat others well.
This is such an underrated skill in Malaysian schools I think. Besides maybe the debate club or something, I don’t think this is a key focus at all, at least not in my schools. Malaysians are generally at least bilingual which is great, but everyone has a first language. The problem is, I notice that for some, they’re not even fluent in their first language, be it Chinese or English. Eg. they could lack a strong vocabulary or make grammatical mistakes. Angela and I talked about this years ago; she wondered how people who didn’t have a good vocabulary would articulate ideas even inside their heads if they didn’t have the words for it. I figured that instead of one accurate word, they probably used a string of them to describe something in particular. But I understand what she means.
Language is essential to the development of ideas. And communication is a way to share those ideas. Without effective communication, where would we be? How would we spread ideas, persuade others to a cause, change perceptions? I don’t mean saying whatever comes to mind either. I mean organizing thoughts and conveying ideas in an articulate, eloquent manner, whether it be written or spoken.
All these skills I wrote above? I don’t even have all of them but those which I do, I developed only in college or when I started working. For example, being a liberal arts school, the writing at Mount Holyoke was rigorous. We had to craft arguments, sell ideas, tell stories. My writing improved so much after four years of writing papers.
Children shouldn’t have to wait until they get to a good college or start their careers to start developing these skills. In my last blog post I wrote about my concerns about Chinese school and received a lot of comments from people who did attend Chinese school and fared well. I’m not saying that Chinese school or other options we have are bad; I just believe we should want better for our children.
What do you want for your kids?
End of the year has been super busy for us!
Within the last week of school, Fighter’s school celebrated Children’s Day and took a field trip to school.
Penny even busier wtf. She had a Rainbow Party, a year end performance, a full on water play day at school, and a Christmas party wtf.
Fighter on his school trip. They went to a local theme park but I can’t remember what it’s called wtf #shitmom
I don’t have photos of his concert but he apparently did so well! Last time he wouldn’t even let me come watch him, but now he agreed to have Grandma and Daddy come. He said Grandpa cannot cos Grandpa farts too much WTF FHL. Hahahahahaha.
Penny and Jenn Vie, whom she says is her best friend now hahaha. It’s Rainbow Party today, which is basically the culmination of all the colors they’ve learned about. They’re supposed to wear colorful clothes but I miraculously found a rainbow print dress in Penny’s closet! I’m proud of my shopping wtf.
Messy paint and water play time.
She wanted to be Cinderella for the last day of school hahaha.
During her performance! She’s saying “Hi everyone” hahahaha. Super cute this picture I love.
Penny got a Good Behavior cert on the last week of school! This is her second one this year; every week they choose 2-3 children who did something exemplary that week to present a certificate to. It could be they were the best at something, or a personal achievement.
Penny got hers for “being loving to her friends and helpful to her teachers”. :))) When I met the teachers for end of term chat, they told me the same thing too – that Penny would look out for her friends and make sure everyone was ok. And she’d rush to help the teachers wipe down tables and clear away their supplies. :)))
This was the rest of Penny’s report. I more or less already know all this, but just posting cos the pictures the school took are cute hahaha.
OK I know this one she’s damn good at cos she already bosses everyone else around to follow rules lol.
This one cos the top picture also so cute! This little boy really likes Penny, calls her his best friend and is always seeking her out apparently.
Penny will be leaving this school and joining Fighter at his school next year! I’m quite sad about this actually because both kids have been at this school since the start. Fighter started play class here when he was one, so it’s been 4 years of our lives. We’ve had a good experience at this school and Imma miss it!
But I decided to put them both in the same school next year cos I’m tired of doing two different school runs every day wtf. Every day I drop Fighter off, then Penny. Then I wait around a couple of hours before going back to Fighter’s school to pick him, then to Penny’s to get her. Penny is quite mature anyway so I think she’ll do well there.
Fighter is at a Chinese kindergarten now and he will go on until primary school. Penny will be the same.
I registered Fighter for Chinese primary school because it seemed the best option out of international and government schools, but I’m starting to doubt my decision. T____T The problem isn’t that he can’t cope, it’s that he’s coping too well WTF.
He’s normally very agreeable and eager to please. So because of that, he’s generally very well behaved and attentive in class. As a result, he’s really good in his studies, especially Chinese, not just because he likes languages, but cos he tries very hard.
The downside is that said agreeability inside a strict Chinese school environment, where there’s only one right way (the teacher’s way), has created an unreasonable fear in him of getting scolded or “being wrong”. I’ve noticed a reluctance to try new or “risky” things because he can’t make sure he’ll be “right”. His teacher even told me that when she even turns her attention to him and asks, “Jude what are you doing?”, he freaks out and bursts into tears. O_O
And his school is just kindergarten, not a proper Chinese school! They have rules but the teachers are cheerful and loving. And – I asked Fighter himself – his teacher has never even scolded him before. So I can only deduce that it’s the environment that has created this irrational fear in him.
It’s not that I want an environment free from rules for my kids – definitely not la cos life doesn’t exist without rules. But I don’t want Fighter to be afraid of being different, or to make mistakes. I want him experiment to find answers, without worrying if it’s the right ones. If it’s not the right answer, it’s okay because if he’s not afraid of trying and failing, he will eventually get the right one.
Penny is a more immovable character who wants to excel but doesn’t care what people think so much so I actually think she’ll do well in a Chinese school hahaha. But I also have doubts now about how much of her potential she (and Koko) would reach in this environment.
So that’s my dilemma now. Where do the kids go from here? (
Feeling super brain dead now but I’m facing a backlog of work (ironically thanks to my Vancouver trip which is what Imma blog about) so lets get cracking wtf.
I did a week long Vancouver trip recently because…. *drumroll wtf* my soul mate got married! Wah I just remembered there’s an Angieentry blog category that I can add to wtf.
This is the story of Angie’s wedding and the first solo trip I’ve taken in yearsssss.
Beware a shit ton of photos coming up!
So the trip started with these two crying their eyes out because I was leaving. -_-
I’d already prepped them for weeks beforehand, telling them I needed to go help Auntie Angela with her wedding, and that I’d come back with presents for them.
Penny told me I can go but I must come back in ONE MINUTE wtf. Fighter asked if he could come with me, and he already has a visa (it’s his Australian visa wtf). Then Penny said I don’t need to go there to buy presents, just buy here (in Malaysia) lolol.
Normally my parents come over to stay before I leave for any trips and they’re so happy and distracted with Grandma and Grandpa that they don’t mind me leaving. But my mom had an eye infection so she couldn’t come over yet.
This was the hardest trip ever to leave on cos I got in the car and both of them were wailing outside with our helper Dada. T________T I ain’t gonna deny I cried in the car too. T____T
So much guilt that when I saw the Disney Store in HKIA I might have gone overboard with the gifts. :X
Anyway I must public service announcement first.
IF SOMEONE COMES UP TO YOU IN KLIA AND OFFERS PORTER SERVICE, DO NOT TAKE IT.
I’d just got to the airport and before I could get a luggage cart, a guy dressed in some uniform came up to me with a cart and offered to help me. He said it was a porter service, and I was like oh? Since when does KLIA have this? He told me it’s been some time and my first, optimistic thought was, wow Malaysia Baru service also better now wtf.
We got to my check in counter and the guy continued to wait there for me while I checked my luggage in. I smiled at him awkwardly and still didn’t think it was anything.
After I was done, he basically pushed my tiny pink carry on suitcase to the security checkpoint and said….
That will be RM 27. Actually it’s RM 30 but now got discount.
FML. I was too scared not to pay him after he brought all my bags in, but seriously WTF. He did NOT inform me prior that there would be a fee, making me think it was a considerate service from the airport! Believe in the best in people also cannot wtf.
And he basically charged me for something I could easily have done myself! I only had one suitcase for check in and one carry on bag!
So guys. Never accept this service from these con artists. I should have reported them la gah.
The second incident is this.
I arrived a day earlier than expected WTF. Normally traveling from Asia to North America gains you a day and you arrive on the same day. But for some reason Cathay insisted at different times that I would arrive the day after only. Angela and I attributed it to my layover in Hong Kong but seriously my layover was only three hours wtf.
I spent the flight from Hong Kong to Vancouver puzzling over the timing until just before we touched down, the pilot announced the time and date of arrival. Then only I knew I was a day early hahahaahha.
Reunited and it feels so good~
As usual with us, it’s like we just saw each other last week, no matter how long we haven’t met up.
Visited Melu! It’s Angela’s cold pressed juice bar (and other healthy stuff) and I’m so proud of her. T______T
My juice! Flu Fighter or something it’s called. Picked it cos I had a raging running nose thanks to the change in temperature from KL to Vancouver. It was orange and turmeric mostly and very yummy!
With Angela and my Zara jacket wtf.
Melu is in downtown Vancouver, on West Pender Street wtf so go check it out whoever’s in the city! Shit seriously I actually remember the road name cos I had to walk over using Google Maps hahahaha.
On the way to run wedding errands! I was there a few days earlier so I went with her to get stuff done. Very nice actually cos we travel together and all but we rarely get to just hang out doing mundane every day stuff. I haven’t been back to Vancouver since we were like 22 and it’s nice to see her every day life too. *not creepy*
Wah this one hahahaha. So one night we were at an izakaya and we were seated in a booth just talking and laughing. Then suddenly this guy came up to us and said, “Sorry but my friends and I heard you talking and we’re wondering what language were you speaking? Japanese? Korean?”
FOL. We were like “….English?”
And he was like, “Hahaha! No seriously, what language were you speaking?”
He asked three times, and we said English three times and he still didn’t believe us WTF. Then he proceeded to try to ask us out wtf. I was tempted to tell him sorry we busy doing wedding planning but I didn’t know if Angela wanted to give out that info hahaha.
But anyway what the. Hahahaha. When Angela and I talk to each other, we speak in Malaysian English, but even then I already minimize our accent with her. I speak like Malaysian but pronounce words American if that makes sense lolol. So that’s like our special language wtf.
Clearly it’s also our secret language cos nobody around us can understand hahaha. We were friends with Americans for a year (and damn close some more ok, hang out every day type) and after one freaking year, we realized they thought all this while we were speaking Chinese to each other WTF.
OMG Malaysian oysters can jump back into the sea wtf.
Saw a raccoon outside Angela’s house! I thought it was so cute until the next morning we woke up and discovered it had dug up a large portion of her backyard WTF.
Movie trip! Watched Ralph Breaks The Internet.
Also with Angela’s cousin Kelvin who used to hang out with us a lot on weekends back in college.
Opened my door on my last night in Canada and found this homeless trio waiting for me outside my room hahahaha. It’s because I’m very fun to be around ok wtf. Angela is stretching out on Frank if you can’t see hahaahha.
Two nights before the wedding! Bride doing DIY teeth whitening hahahahaha. And my sinus was really bad wtf.
One night before the wedding! Bride booked a room for her bridesmaids at the hotel, and we went to check out the hotel bar, called Reflections and apparently super popular cos of its decorations.
It is very pretty! And I got some ideas for Colony too hahaha.
My (non alcoholic) drink.
We used to selfie so much and now neither of us take photos that much also. Is it age or trends? We will never know wtf.
So take more now!
Wah this one turned out a bit gross hahahahaha.
Little Christmas details!
Oh yea this was right before my phone dropped to the back of the sofa cos I balanced it precariously on the edge wtf. I had to climb next to the couple seated beside us and the girl was crying OMG I think I rudely interrupted a breakup wtf.
Cleaned up the next morning cos someone’s getting married!
With Team Bride! Vivian, C and Chen, the sole bridesman wtf.
The first look! I was wholly expecting Frank to cry but he didn’t. Sucks wtf.
This magical couple. T____T
After that was a lot of photo taking, and we even adjourned outdoors to shoot portraits at the art gallery.
Looks so nice right? Well it’s mid winter wtf. It was 6 degrees C and windy. T____T My smile is frozen hahahaha. We’d all have our coats and capes on and when it was time to shoot, we’d throw the jackets towards the team to quickly catch and snap.
I was seriously dreading this portion of the wedding cos I am so bad with the cold, even with my bedroom aircon I’m wrapped in two blankets wtf. By the time we were done, my nose was running big time, and even my neck and head hurt from shivering too much hahahaha. But it was fun too, complaining about the cold and joking and posing. And achievement unlocked ok, take outdoor photos in winter in a flimsy chiffon dress hahaha.
Ran back indoors after and had the most glorious hot tomato soup ever.
I really really like tomato soup now after this hahahaha.
The wedding coordinator, Lisa from Shing Weddings is so detailed and thoughtful. She made sure the bridal party had time and food to eat because we were on our feet with duties the entire day.
These two hahahahaha.
Then it was time for the ceremony.
Angela walked in to Elvis’s Can’t Help Falling In Love and as the opening chords struck, even before she walked in, my face crumpled and I thought I was going to bawl WTF. She was just so beautiful and everything was so beautiful. T_T So god bless us, the photos here with me inside are probably gonna be damn ugly cos the whole time my face was moving trying to control my tears sorry guys. -_-
Congratulations you two. T____T So so so happy to be there and see these two get married and fluff Angie’s train. T______T
With my beautiful Angie T______T (this is what one glass of wine does to me)
The beautiful, beautiful set up. The hotel was gorgeous, the decorations impeccable and the coordinating team was amazing. They only invited 80 people so everyone who was there wanted to be there for the newly weds.
The layout is quite different from Asian weddings! The main table is viking style, on stage, and it’s the bridesmaids and groomsmen that sit up there with the couple, not the families.
It was where I gave my maid of honor speech too! Slightly stressed cos Angela is damn competitive and kept telling me I must beat Frank’s best maid (his best friend is a girl)’s speech WTF. She even brought props so I was looking around hastily to see what I can use as props too hahahaha.
But I think my speech went well! Cos everyone laughed so much at it hahaha.
The prettiest cake ever. Made by Angela’s friend Effie!
Playing with the photo props.
We were really tired hahaha. Bridal party taking a break on the floor hahaha.
First dance by the newly weds. T3T
Me and Vivian, whose husbands didn’t come hahahaha.
Met all Angela’s friends from her side of the world. :)))
It’s a wrap!
So tired after it all we changed back to sneakers and loafers hahaha.
We always joked about this day, and it finally happened. My best friend and soul mate got married to a man worthy of her love and life. 🙂 I’m so happy for them and so glad I got to be a part of the biggest day of their lives.
Posting my MOH speech here. 🙂
Hi everyone. My name is Audrey and I am Angela’s maid of honor. Some of you I’ve had the pleasure of meeting just now. But well, most of you – may not have seen me before and that’s because I live in Malaysia.
Angela and I met in 2004 – 14 years ago! – at college, Mount Holyoke College in the US. We were going through orientation together. And I noticed this girl who I thought was really cute…. She’s pretty, she was wearing pink like me. And makeup!
But I didn’t like her immediately. I think everyone here knows what Angela’s voice is like? It’s high pitched and very cute. So yea…. the first time she opened her mouth I thought she was faking it.
I was like guys. Nobody has this voice. Yea I was super judgmental.
So I avoided her. To my surprise, she kept coming up to me and inviting me to do stuff with her! And I didn’t really have any other friends anyway so I went along with her. (She told me later that she’d already identified me as potential best friend because like her, I was dressed in pink). We went on an organized trip to Target for school supplies and ended up picking all the same things. From that day on, we were inseparable.
In junior year, we made it to Kyoto, Japan together for a year abroad. In our senior year, we had the option of having our own single rooms but we still chose to room together. She was literally my other half. We bonded over the same interests – shopping, Japan, and the love of pink for example. We also shared the same sense of humor and values.
We are basically the same person, except for some obvious differences. She’s very neat while I’m super messy – she’s had to kick my dirty socks over to my side of the room more than once. She’s very organized, while I lose things on a daily basis, and she remembers everything I forget (especially when it came to school work). And luckily for our friendship, we like different types of guys. One of my favorite things about her though is her drive and determination to achieve whatever she’s set her mind to. I mean look at Melu guys!
When we graduated, the day before we both flew home – her to Vancouver, me to Kuala Lumpur – we sat in the bathroom and cried. We called ourselves soul mates and at that point , we couldn’t imagine life without each other or even if we’d ever live in the same country again.
Well today we still don’t live in the same country. We plan trips and meet every one or two years – she either comes to Asia or we meet in the States. And when we meet, it’s like nothing has changed! We’re still soulmates. The only thing that changed was the introduction of a boy named Frank Yeh.
I first heard about this Frank guy in 2012. Angela was in Malaysia for my wedding, and I remember the night before, we were lying in the dark in my room while she went on about Frank.
It wasn’t until two years later in 2014 that I met Frank with Angela on a trip to LA. My first thought was – this guy is EXACTLY Angela’s type. Tanned skin, big eyes, and like, a cool demeanor.
Frank is the opposite of cool. He’s warm and friendly and hilarious and I could see he was crazy about Angela. I’ve only had the pleasure of meeting Frank on two occasions – once when we did that trip to LA, and a year ago when we were in Bangkok for a friend’s wedding.
I got to know him better during that trip and found out that in addition to being hilarious and friendly, he’s also stable, genuine, wise and calm. In other words, he’s perfect for Angela who has been known to be excitable and emotional… when it comes to guys. I don’t think I could have chosen a better man for Angela to spend her life with. If I had to give up the title of soulmate, I would willingly give it up to Frank. She’s always been amazing, my favorite person in the world. And he makes her an even better person.
I’m so happy to be here today to celebrate the marriage of my soulmate with the best man. To Angela and Frank. May you both have the funnest, most loving life together.