Evil Eye Mug Fifth Spirit Tarot Journal
Diary

Lockdown Diary: Day 3

When I sat down for the Monday Morning meeting, the first thing discussed was the high probability of lockdown getting extended. Not a great way to start the week, eh?

I tried to push the speculative news aside, along with the thought that I most probably won’t see my parents nor go on Kumano Kodo pilgrimage this year.

Instead, I spent the day working, reading a few pages from the boring CPA textbook, running, practising yoga for runners, texting friends and gentle journaling.

Some highlights of the day include bed coffee, payday (I pulled the King of Pentacles), cozying up on the sofa with Fafa and watching The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel on Netflix, the smell of the burning candle ━ a gift from Jik, getting a package and Wood Frog’s pumpkin seed sliced bread.

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Film Camera MjuII Kodak Colorplus 400 Mirror Selfie 2020 Meletos
Celebrations

2020 The Year I…

…Rang in the new year in Japan for the third time in a row. We had sushi and sake as the first meal of the year.

…Went to Bali for a weekend getaway. Now reflecting back, I am grateful we had the chance to travel outside of Australia this year.

…Started a new job in a new company.

…Practice with Miko, the first (second-hand) film camera I scored on eBay at the end of last year.

…Celebrated my friend’s, Liz, 30th birthday with a stay-cation in Mornington Peninsula.

…Self-isolated.

…Joined a witch coven.

…Bought my first ever indie tarot deck created by a female artist, then the second, then the third.

…Studied for CPA.

…Started liking black-coffee which no doubt is heavily influenced by Fafa.

…Finally enjoyed a good sandwich. It’s from Tivoli bakery on Toorak road which was introduced to me by Liz.

…Lived in lock-down for the most part of the year.

…Had a lengthy period of sadness from the combination of Covid and seasonal depression.

…Which made me pick up running.

…and cooking.

…and journal-ed as if my life depends on it.

…Got a tarot deck and oracle deck for birthday gifts from Fafa and Jik respectively.

…Had plenty of tarot readings.

…Deepen my tarot practice.

…Started a tarot blog then stopped because I thought I didn’t have that much to talk about in relation to tarot.

…Facetimed with my parents every single day from March onwards.

…Started this blog, a personal blog, but proceed to discuss mostly about tarot.

…Paid for a Google Photos account.

…Found out that Chiron has entered my chart since March and will stay there until the beginning of next year. Eek!!

…Finally read The Alchemist and generally read more books than last year.

…Stayed in a Mornington Peninsula airbnb.

…and in a Meletos winery in Yarra Valley.

…and in the farmhouse in Echuca where I took a boat trip along the famous Murray River.

…Went to an art gallery in Bendigo to celebrate our date-anniversary.

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Growth Word of the year 2020 Dry Yellow Flowers
Musings

Looking Back At Growth

I chose Growth (Eight of Pentacles) to be my word of the year. Throughout the year, with Covid looming upon us, I have given up checking-in with the word. I kept thinking:

What’s the point?

But today, I got a reminder I set on my phone at the same time I chose the word in the beginning of last year. So I took a few minutes to reflect back, even if it’s a failure, surely I could learn a thing or two from it.

Turns out, I did grow a bit this year. So had my life.

This year I learned to cook at least 20 new dishes, passed my CPA exam, obtained my driving license, stepped into the managerial position at work, deepened my tarot practice, adjusted my expectations and goals due to Covid, started this blog, journal-ed, read more books than the past few years and achieved a few more things that matter to me.

For me, some of the things above were significant growths ━ but the most important growth for me was outgrowing parts of my old self and beliefs that I released and left behind.

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Celebrations

A Small Celebration

First thing first, I passed my CPA exam! I was so stressed out about the result that I fell sick the day before.

Instead of acknowledging the, albeit minuscule, achievement, my immediate reaction after seeing the result was to book the next subject, which retrospectively speaking, was bad of me.

How could I not thank myself, Fafa and the Universe first for helping me progress in life and ticking off my goals. Especially after all the complaining, pre-exam stress and post-exam crash.

When I told Fafa that I passed the exam, he congratulated me and proceeded to book a table at Fonda, our favorite Mexican joint. I told him it seemed unnecessary, after all, it was just one subject. But then he reminded me of my own words:

“celebrating. small and big, things will breed more things to be celebrated”

Ah to be reminded of my own wisdom. I believe any reason to celebrate is a good reason to celebrate. And passing CPA exam that I paid more than $1k for, spent hours studying and stressed out over the result for seems like a more than an okay reason to celebrate. So we are off to Fonda in another 15 minutes — to celebrate both passing my CPA exam and the second anniversary of our second wedding.

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Musings

Post Exam Crash

I completed the first of six CPA exams today.

By completed I mean I sat for the online exam, while a stranger watched my ugly-thinking face for four hours straight through the webcam.

The result will be out in December. What an anti-climax it’s to wait for the result for two whole months. By then I would have forgotten what are the eight ethic codes established by OECD.

Send cookies pls.

The intial post-exam plan was to do a bit of office work. After that, maybe write a bit and read a chapter of People From My Neigbourhood. The latest book by my favorite Japanese author, Hiromi Kawakami. I ordered it from the Paperback Bookshop early this month, yet haven’t had the chance to immerse myself in it.

But, my brain was like “Hell no, I am way too spent rn!” — Partly because of the exam but also because I have been constantly stressing out about it since last week. My brain was crashing, so was I.

I zoned out with The Binding playing on the Netflix in the background, before eating delicious dinner — courtesy of Fafa who treated me to Indonesian food for completing the exam — and drinking a whole (relatively small) bottle of wine.

An hour ago, not wanting to drop the 30 days writing challenge ball this early, I opened the laptop to write about chasing the Glico Running Man in Osaka. Well, I tried, but I just couldn’t.

The Running Man will have to wait. For now, this will do.

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Musings

Kovfefed Monthly Digest – Sep 20

Kovfefed Monthly Digest series was inspired by reading the life happenings of others on the internet. Having always found it interesting, I started my version of a monthly recap. These are the highlights and life happenings of my life in the past 30 days. Hope you find something entertaining, informative, or at the least amusing here. 

Highlights and Happenings

My colleague started a running challenge to be achieved as a team and it has inspired me to run. The last time I ran as a form of exercise was, well, never. I used the app NikeRun and have clocked in 70km this month. I am targeting 100km next month.

I celebrated my first (and hopefully last in this lifetime!) ISO birthday together with Fafa, Jik, and my parents on Zoom. It was a memorable birthday; it reminded me that I have infinity things to be grateful for.

Every Friday evening, I take out the watercolor set I got myself for my birthday and pour a generous amount of of rose to my tea mug, and practice gouache for fun. it has been great work week stress releasing outlet.

New and Loving

ISO September turned out to be my busiest month this year, which means I had to put the cooking on the back burner (pun intended).

In the first couple of weeks, I resorted back between UberEats, sending Fafa to do Indonesian food pick-up, and going to Hecho Mehico to collect my triple order of $5 prawn chorizo tapas. Though I have been eating delicious food (definitely better than my home cooking), I can see the hit on both the weighing machine and ISO-savings acc, so I thought why not try those ready-made meals subscription. I don’t believe the 20s-yo me had envisioned the 30s-yo me standing in front of a microwave waiting for my food to be done daily. But here we are. YouFoodz has been great — except that one time when they rang the doorbell to deliver the food at 3.30 AM.

This month I also drank a copious amount of tea from Tea Tonic, shifted to oat milk, have been using Neutrogena body oil excessively,

Internet

I published three posts. I must say, for someone who almost retires the blog, it feels like a mini accomplishment. I wrote about food, obviously – stroopwafel and Tahu Gejrot and interviewed Neera, a blogger who I met at a blogging conference last year.

I also resurrected my KodakKween IG account, so I can post my side passion for film photography all willy nilly without making it culture-y or artsy.

Read

My read numbers have been running behind on Goodreads 2020 List, so I tried to catch up this month.

At the start of the month, I read and loved a thriller His and Hers by Alice Feeney.

I also finished my first ever fiction audiobook, The Secret She Keeps (free to download) by an Australian author, Michael Robotham. It’s the Avid Reader online book club choice for October. “It started good but finish off meh“, will be my feedback during the zoom sesh.

On nonfiction section I read: Don’t Be a B*tch, Be an Alpha by Seo Kelleher (read and loved), I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron (currently reading), The New Diary (presently reading, loving and kicking myself for not reading it earlier – the book was published in 1978), The Power of Tarot by Liz Worth (currently reading), You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero (reading this almost immediately after You Are a Badass), Reading the Leaves (currently reading and savoring), Pilgrimage in Japan by Lauren Hines (read and mega loved because it was published in diary/blog format).

Media

TV – I watched a few horror movies this month. Starting with The Boy II, The Grudge, The Wretched The Pyramid (really liked this one), As Above So Below, and Room for Rent (the best!). These movies sent me into a rabbit hole of the horror-movies-explained rabbit hole on Youtube. There, I discovered FoundFlix. It’s a horror movie commentary channel. I also watched and loved Away, #Alive, Criminal UK season 2, and American Murder on Netflix.

Podcast – my current favourite, which might surprise you since it’s not another true crime, the Wildy Tarot Podcast. The girls in it recommended the Power of Tarot book above.

Alice Feeney – I have been playing On brulera by Pomme on repeat on Spotify. I accidentally heard and immediately loved it when it’s played on an ending scene on one of the episodes in AWAY.

Last Time

Last year this time, I was living my best life traveling around Scandanavia with my best friend. During which I wrote about Rijsttafel-ing Indonesian Food in Amsterdam and said Hi from Bergen.

Thank You, Next!

The seven million Victorians are looking forward to being freed from lockdown in October. That is if the 14-day average for the new cases continues to drop etcetera.

Meanwhile, Fafa and are also going to celebrate our wedding anniversary with dinner-date at Yagiz and a staycation in Meletos.

There are more than a few good things to look forward to, I guess.

On the opposite side, I am sitting for CPA exam mid next month. All I can say about that is GAH!!!! But I am going to try to stay positive while still operating with a come-what-way attitude, which has been serving me well this month. I am also worried that I might experience the case of lockdown nostalgia.

But that’s for me to be worried about, next month.

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Musings

Kovfefed Monthly Digest – May 17

Kovfefed Monthly Digest series was inspired by reading the life happenings of other bloggers on the internet. Having always found it interesting, I started my version of a monthly recap.

These are the highlights and life happenings of my life in the past 30 days. Hope you find something entertaining, informative, or at the least amusing here.

Highlights and Happenings

The highlights of this month would be going to my Indian colleague’s house half-drunk for an Indian Dinner & Drinks Part 2; going to comic-Con with Fafa and Newman, dressed as Kamala Khan, just Fafa, and Luke Skywalker; and girls only hot-pot session at Liz’s.

I took a day off work last Monday because I wasn’t feeling well, both physically and mentally (needed to recharge). I also went to hardware Societe (still can’t pronounce it) and had the best salmon dish in Melbourne. The hype is real, people! If you don’t mind waiting in line for some time, do give it a visit.

The best friends and I have reinstatedFace-Mask-Thursday routine. I am in the progress of collection 100 pictures of us to display it ala Andy Warhol.

New and Loving

Let’s start with the big news. I moved to a cross-functional job a few weeks ago. Working on a new project in the company. I have a significant imposter syndrome! I zero knowledge on how to manage a project. And the accountant in me is cringing at the idea of working with a big group of people. I am worried that I am not contributing or understanding enough. I am careful about not stepping on other people’s toe, something I never had to worry about in the previous function. What should I do? I welcome any suggestion, you guys!

I filled up my weekends with workshops, including the healing power of herbs. The best part about it was meeting and making new friends.

I also tried the famous Anzaccookie for the first time, which I bought from IGA. It was terrible. Ugh! Why are we celebrating a holiday with this horrible tasting cookie??!

Autumn is here, baby! And it brought a ton of gorgeousness into the air.

My colleagues in the new project are fantastic! The female-only team does meetings over chai-latte, where the words like “family”, “tree of trust” and “circle of sisterhood” are being thrown around.

We tried Mukka, an Indian restaurant in Fitzroy, suggested by a colleague. Oh, my lord, it was so good! It finally manages to replace my year-long good Indian food craving. We are going there again for lunch next weekend.

I donated eight bags of clothes to theRed Crossover the weekend, special thanks to Uber free-pick up service. It felt good to give away clothes which don’t bring me joy to others. Bonus: no more mini-anxiety attacks when I open the cupboard.

Read

Books bought this month: Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism, Healing Magic The Guidebook to Conscious Living and Kitchen Table Tarot. I am halfway through the first one and dabbed here and there on the last one.

We loved and highly recommended Train To Busan, a Korean zombie movie. It’s on Netflix, add it to your list for the weekend!

I also finished and had plenty of discussion with various groups about13 Reasons Why? Which resulted in more than a few arguments. Side note, how cool was the Skye reading Clay tarot scene.

There is no new-to-me blog this month, just glad that Y, the blogger behind I Live In Japan start writing again after being hiatus the first half of 2017. I enjoy reading and slightly jealous of her daily life in Japan.

I started listening to the Lunar Abundance podcast by Ezzie Spencer, whose book I purchased a few months ago. I have been studying about the moon phase, including woman cycle, and it has been fascinating. Check out Emgoddess in Perfect Potion.

Internet

I wrote about five reasons why you should take a gap year. If you are currently in Japan, check out the Charming Journey exhibition in Tokyo. Well, if you are in Japan, do visit Mt FujiFushimi Inari in KyotoKoyasan, and Takayama.

Thank You, Next!

I am going to Jakarta next month! Can’t wait to bear-hug Mama Kween, awkward-hug Papa Kween, kiss Kiwi, my cousins, and Che. And food! I have made a list: nasi campur, nasi Padang, bakwan, KOI bubble tea, sweet pancake, chilli noodle and chicken porridge.

The Emerging Writers Festival is also happening in June. I got the weekend ticket. See you there?!

Lastly, I am planning to squeeze in Ayer Rocks into the calendar for either next month or July. I am trying to convince Jik to come with me. She is stalling. Jik come on, C’mon, C’mon! Let’s go!!

You guys, it’s not easy to rewind the whole month, I only remember last week clearly, but the first three weeks? Not so much. I need to do something about it. Either I start bullet-journaling my weeks’ happenings or break the expat’s diary into two parts in a month, on the new moon and full moon—end of the rant.

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