Monday, January 05, 2015

Resolutions 2015: AppRes/15/0105

We've not been doing any resolutions because: it never gets resolved by year end.

And apparently when we do plan for resolutions it turns out to be for stuff that requires organizing ie album art, scanning photos to digital copies. As it is these kinda of organising work never ends. When we think of how we want to reorganize our photos from our iPhone to our Mac, renaming them and then moving them to separate folders...we're not fully sold onto iPhoto (not to mention how iPhoto isn't getting any more love with Yosemite and iOS8).

So. Let's try for this year.

We are aware that we're quite the hoarder: memorabilia and souvenirs are one thing but having that mentality of 'we should keep this, we should be able to repurpose this in the future' meant we have lots of used papers (to re-use as rough notepaper), ribbons from presents (for future presents if the ribbons match the wrapping and is long enough), the packages of things we've bought (we're staring at our hard drive boxes as we type this), pamphlets and magazines and reading materials and...gah. Our tabletops never really get to enjoy being left clear of things.

We are aware as to why we hoard: we're aware our memory isn't the clearest and so we tend to keep lots of stuff to remind us of things we've done, places we've been to, things to do...

Only, we're never great at clearing away stuff that can be cleared away once we don't need it any more. We were holding on to brochures and marketing aids about oral contraceptives from 9 years ago, for goodness sake! Every time we think, oh, we should read this up again one day, and yeah that day never did came.

And that's a topic that was brought up in Marie Kondo's book: not knowing how to let go off stuff you don't use any more. Better yet is how it also mentions about how some of these stuff, instead of being discarded, gets given away to someone else (who may not want it either) to dispel some of that notion that you are being wasteful by getting rid of something still useful. So when it comes to cleaning now we have a slight awareness that we really ought to just throw away stuff that we know we would keep but would never use. If we need it rarely (or if ever) we can just get a new one then. We shouldn't need to thank every single thing for its purpose before discarding, because we don't want to anthropomorphize everything in our life.

Thus our resolution this year would be to tidy up our workspace. Because we really do spend a lot of time at our table and honestly it would be nice if we have the space to wrap stuff again without having to shift the mess about.

It's just too bad that there's no way we can get rid of everything that doesn't spark joy from our worktable.

Saturday, January 03, 2015

3,679,200 Minutes

It's 2015! Time really flies near the end of the year, and honestly we really felt the final quarter of 2014 just zip past.

Last year we tried something new, following the footsteps of marsyparsy (who's done this for 2 years now) and alakzen (who only tried it for 2013 and decided it was enough) and post a photo a day on Instagram. Except we weren't satisfied with just posting a photo and using the caption to state the date, we had to find extra work for ourself by:
1. Editing the photo to place text, specifically a hashtag and the day;
2. Publishing first on Tumblr;
3. Getting the Tumblr link, then only publishing on Instagram.

Thank goodness for IFTT and Instagram having the option to post directly to Facebook, otherwise we would have given up sooner or later with all that trouble we found ourself.

So, for 2014, we've captured a moment every day in pictures. Most days were mundane, some days couldn't be captured in just a photo. But the idea there was just to jot down: here, look, today was an experience, don't forget it, don't let the day just go by. Blogging used to be how we kept our memories of what happened (well, this blog has survived up to now) and is probably still one of our best repositories of what we've done. Facebook? Endless scrolling and scrutinising posts if we ever wanted to find something from years past - it's great for the present, not the past (unless you've specifically made a photo album of it). Instagram would be slightly easier provided you've used an unique hashtag to categorise your own photos, and thumbnails are easier to scan compared to blog titles.

Currently we are writing using a Bluetooth keyboard paired to our iPad, which means it isn't easy linking words to events that happened (we guess in this case linking to our Tumblr posts) like we used to do (three years ago). But it would still be good to list down highlights for the year (we'll just update this post later once we refer back to our photos):

To start, we'd stayed on with the Young KL Singers for the third year (since joining back in 2012 for the 10th anniversary production), with the start of the year seeing us perform 2013's production, YKLS.Period, in PenangPac in January, before starting our new production: Incantations. Boardgaming made its way back with a higher frequency when the occasional Fridays saw some members of YKLS coming to YCA for the occasional gaming session. In more choir-related happenings, a bunch of us got together to sing an a capella version of Everything Is Awesome from The Lego Movie. A bunch of us got into the Shake 'n Take craze. Performed and experienced the Yayasan Sime Darby Arts Festival at KLPac, which was a great eye-opener. Followed a bunch of choirmates to the Henessey Artistry event. YKLS then performed in DPAC before heading up to PenangPac a few weeks later to perform, which was an awesome experience with more members driving up this time (and it being a more intensive food trip)! To round up the choir year, we managed to join all the carolling sessions this year at 1 Utama.

We decided to start watching Doctor Who, starting from Series 5, working our way to Series 7 before going back to Series 1-4 to tide us over while we waited for Series 8. Then started Being Human after that, both the BBC and US remake (although only for the first couple of seasons in both cases. Sailor Moon Crystal finally started showing much to our excitment. The Hobbit trilogy finishes and we're left feeling it would have been better off as a two-parter instead.

Chinese New Year this time we experienced our first pun choi. It's been agreed among the TTDIans that birthdays should now be just a makan celebration without the stressful part of pooling and getting presents, and while we managed to avoid celebrating with the January babies (on account on being sick), we celebrated a belated version with the March babies instead. As for the Chief's birthday, we were slightly slow at planning it but managed to pull it off starting with a joint celebration with the TTDIan's, then a quiet date at Way Modern Chinois trying out their truffle roast duck, and pulling off a surprise party with the guys (featuring lots of spinach). There were also a couple of weddings, leaving only a handful of collegemates and schoolmates that haven't tied the knot (and speeches warning said folks that the hengdais are no longer as young and active as they used to be so don't take too long). More friends are also now proud parents although this year we couldn't make it for the full moon celebrations. The Chief also brought us along to attend the gala dinner event of A Journey Through Time.

Played Diablo III (again, only as far as the storyline was concerned). Attended the Professor Layton vs Pheonix Wright launch at Berjaya Times Square. Dropped our portable hard drive containing our iTunes media, and lost most of our recent music and videos (thank goodness our photos were backed up to the laptop instead). Got our first Mac Mini and started moving over to the Mac. Bought not just one, but two Logitech bluetooth keyboards (they are so worth it). Won a Lenovo Yoga tablet running Android OS. Finally found Ultra Street Fighter 4 on sale on Steam.

Made a couple more trips to Penang and a number of trips to Singapore! Finally made full use of our Universal Studios Singapore season pass before it expired. Also, experienced Guangzhou for the first time and once again walked for hours due to excellent weather.

Finally ended the year on a quieter note as we didn't have a Christmas party this year (due to a hectic December), and a simple New Year's Eve with friends for dinner and games.

Gosh. We must say that the photo a day project does help in reminding us of the many things that did happen in 2014! Here's hoping there's plenty more in store for 2015!