Thursday, September 30, 2010


The countdown has begun to my trip to Bali. Attending Leticia and Tjun Hong's wedding on 10.10.10 plus a little pre and post wedding holiday.

I am of course looking forward to the wedding. It's been the 'talk' among our gang for the past year. I am also in desperate need of a little r&r. Let's just say that the past few months have been challenging. I am clearing as much work as I can prior to the trip so that there are less tasks to tackle when I return. I ain't a fan of the first day back at work after a holiday.

While relaxing by the pool at Maya Ubud Resort & Spa (one of our stays), I'll be contemplating, in particular what I'd like to achieve, what I'd like to experience, what I'd like my life to be like in 2011. Of course, what travels are in store too.

Photo of one of the pools at Maya Ubud Resort & Spa in Bali, Indonesia.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pre-Wedding : Leticia & Tjun Hong

This photo was taken on Friday, 16 October 2009, the day Leticia and Tjun Hong legally became husband and wife (you can read about it here). I was really honoured to have been invited to the ROM lunch then and am again honoured to have been invited to Bali for the wedding next month.

A year has passed since that fateful day and I am grateful to have been part of the wedding plans of these good friends of mine. The bride has even given me permission to slap her if she becomes too much of a bridezilla, and I say this with much love! Being a wedding planner herself, Leticia is one for perfection, well, as perfect as one can get to I suppose. I designed her wedding gown, as I did for our other good friend Eileen last year, though they are polar opposites when it comes to what they want (yes, you can read about it here). For Leticia, let's just say I did what I was told, she's that adamant, and even I have to admit that the gown turned out really well, though I did have my reservations at the onset about whether the design would be suitable for a beach wedding in Bali. Now, I love it and I can't wait for the reaction of all the wedding guests when they see her in it. I also did the bridesmaids' dresses, a pocket square for the bridesman (you did not read wrong!), altered both fathers' shirts to fit better, as well as designed outfits for the mothers, not to mention attire for industry friends who've been invited to the bash too. That's a whole lot of work, and that's not counting the bride's additional outfits. Having said that, it was a total pleasure, and I am not saying that just because that's what one does for good friends. Ask Debra about the invites and I am sure she will say the same (that in itself warrants a post as long as this).

This is by far one of the most enthusiastic weddings I've been involved in. There's the wedding proper in Bali, and there's the bigger bash back home later. And boy, do Leticia and Tjun Hong know how to get us all excited. We have received in total, 6 newsletters leading up to the big day, keeping us informed of developments and whetting our appetites for what is to come. For now, our attention is all focused on Bali (read Eileen's take here). Thanks to Richard, our itinerary (by our, I mean Richard, Eileen, Debra and I) for our pre and post wedding holiday is all set, thanks to Leticia, our spa sessions are all booked, pre-thanks to Jim in the hope that he'll capture some great shots of us and not only the bride and groom (since we've made a huge effort to dress according to the theme!). To Shirlyn and Leonard, good luck to the both of you when we land in Bali, you'll both be responsible for perfection to say the least! And Shirlyn, we have received strict instructions to refer to you for all our needs haha! And to Cindy, just make Leticia look beautiful and all will be good!

When all is said and done, I am writing this post purely because I know Leticia and Tjun Hong will appreciate it, in particular Leticia. She is one sentimental person, much like me. I will not be surprised if she prints this out and files it in her scrapbook. Then years down the road, she may just whip it out when we're all having one of our 'makans' and we can have a good laugh.

For now, here are some thoughts of the bride herself, and yes, I do have to remember to bring along the customised passport the soon-to-be-weds designed and printed for every guest, now that's what I call making sure your guests are well prepared and taken care of.

Leticia's thoughts :

Photo shot at The Dining Room of Carcosa Seri Negara in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I Choose

I was watching an episode of Grey's Anatomy Season 7 in which a patient tells Meredith what led to the choices she made in life. The choices are ours really, and though I believe in fate, I also believe that we control our own destiny in some way through the decisions we take. We choose.

So ................

I choose to put my best foot forward in all aspects of my life.

I choose not to settle for second best, it's all or nothing.

I choose to be as much of a perfectionist as I can be.

I choose to appreciate and be grateful for the little pleasures in life.

I choose to stop and smell the roses every now and then.

I choose to work hard and play hard.

I choose to reward myself from time to time.

I choose to put family and good friends high on my priority list.

I choose to travel and see the world.

I choose to be difficult when the situation warrants it!

Photo of the Season 7 cast of Grey's Anatomy.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Something To Look Forward To

I, like many of my friends work hard. I'd like to think then that we deserve to play hard too. And nothing epitomises that more than a holiday.

I'm privileged to have been invited to a destination wedding next month, a beach wedding to be exact. I've been looking forward to it for quite some time for a number of reasons. Firstly, the couple in question of course, both friends of mine, both caring and with much integrity. Secondly, the guest list which includes some other good friends of mine, all great travel companions. And thirdly, well, I've managed to work in a little holiday pre and post wedding, with said travel mates.

I'm counting down the days and as with every impending trip, the anticipation grows daily. There's still a bit to be done - finalise itinerary with transport at the destination, currency exchange, sort out my camera which is currently being serviced, consider attire and pack, you know the drill. Anticipation ........

A beautiful sunset.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Food With Dave And Elaine

Cousins Elaine and Dave are back in town with their kids. And like we always do, we've been getting together for 'makan's. Dave would concur that it's good food whenever we catch up, not shopping, not sightseeing, but food.

We've had a couple of meals together these past 2 weeks; I never paid attention before, but I gather that perhaps 'kangkong belacan' is Dave's favourite Malaysian vegetable dish, not bad for an Aussie. So 'kangkong belacan' was on the menu tonight. So was claypot chicken with salted fish, sweet and sour pork, fried crispy pork in dark soy sauce, four 'heavenly king' vegetables with dried shrimp and chilli, deep fried 'wan yue' fish in soy sauce, braised tofu with prawns and vegetables as well as sizzling venison. We were eight adults and two kids, and we literally swept the plates clean. It is extremely enjoyable having a meal with these cousins of mine, they really appreciate the cooking that we sometimes take for granted.

Elaine summed it up best. When I said, "We always say that the servings are too large but yet we 'sapu' everything", she replied, "See who's eating with you lah". Need I say more. Next 'makan', Wednesday evening! Fuiyoh!

Photo of Dave, Elaine, my sis Suk Harn and I shot last October during Auntie Mary's birthday celebration.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Reflect And Learn

I find myself in one of those moods. Looking back at what might have been, what could have been. What if I had chosen another route when I reached that particular crossroad? I find myself in such a temperament from time to time.

Some say it is not healthy, since we cannot change the past. I think it is good to reflect, re-think it through, and hopefully realise that there is no right or wrong. Whatever decisions we make in life, we live with them, we learn to live with the resultant outcomes, good or not so good. That is the lesson to be learnt.

So as I sit here and brood, I'd like to think that I'll be in a better frame of mind tomorrow. There's much to be savoured in life.

Photo shot at Taksim Square in Beyoglu, Istanbul, Turkey.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Hiplist : Wedding Photographers 2010

Message From The Publisher & Editor-In-Chief

This 4th issue of The Hiplist : Wedding Photographers is an interesting one, with a variety of photographers featured, each offering a different perspective, at different price levels. It is heartening to see that despite the at times soft economic climate, couples are still placing a premium on independent, specialist photographers to document this milestone in their lives.

This publication will serve as an introduction to a number of our wedding industry colleagues, not only photographers but also designers and makeup artists, eco-venues even that are perfect locations for pre-wedding shoots. We hope you find your preferred vendors here.

Explore, enjoy and be inspired ........

Kris Wong

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Mini Facelift

We recently had a mini facelift at That Special Occasion. We've always tried to avoid having to do any renovation works; the thought of having to move stuff and pack is very much off-putting.

However, after being in business for 10 years, it was time for a badly needed touch up. A fresh coat of paint, new carpeting, retro drapes.

It's funny how minor accents can reinvigorate the senses. We feel a bit more creative, the place feels more cosy. Come by for a visit!

Photo shot at That Special Occasion in Desa Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Selamat Hari Raya

My wish this Hari Raya is firstly for all to be safe on the roads and secondly for all Malaysians to be as one. These are lofty aspirations, easier said than done, but I shall keep the faith that they are possible to achieve, hopefully sooner rather than later.

I always feel that come Hari Raya, Deepavali, Christmas and Chinese New Year, it is time for renewal. Time to shed the wounds of the past and start afresh. To look forward to better things ahead. To see what life has in store for us. A new chapter so to speak.

Selamat Hari Raya to all!

Photo shot in the beautiful Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey when I visited in April this year.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Uncle KC

I shall always remember Uncle KC as someone who lived life to the fullest. We often shared tales of our travels, of interesting encounters, more so of late since his retirement and recent travel exploits. An adventurous spirit is what he had in abundance. Although sad at his passing, I think it was fitting that he left us doing what he loved best, riding his superbike. No amount of cajoling would have gotten him to give up this passion of his, that strong was his conviction. I, like all my other family members, feel a deep sense of loss, and it was a privilege having him a part of my life.

A devoted husband, a loving father, a doting grandfather, a good friend ... kind words of an eulogy by his lifelong friend. I would add - a wonderful uncle. Someone who always had a kind word, an enthusiastic disposition, an affirmation of the importance of family ties.

We did not have the chance of a proper farewell, so sudden was his passing. We seek comfort in the personal goodbyes we bid in our hearts. Rest in peace Uncle KC.

A game of Mahjong with Uncle KC during this past Chinese New Year.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Plan To Have No Plans

Some friends have been asking if I have any plans for the Hari Raya break. Here's the deal, I plan to have no plans. Actually, that's not quite true. I do plan to sleep in. I have a dinner firmed up.

I seem to be sleep deprived. Working late nights has caught up with me and I intend to sleep as much as I can during the long Raya weekend. I am going to make it a point not to pack too much into the couple of days other than having a dinner with family friends whom I haven't seen in a while.

Of course there's always the pool. Deck chair, magazine, sunglasses; bliss. It will have to do for now if I can't get to a locale as seen in the photo above. A silver lining? October is not too far away ... a week-long holiday beckons.

Photo shot in Antalya, Turkey.