Sunday, March 31, 2013

Of Living (Sun)Room

Both my husband and I love this.

Source: Elledecor

High ceiling. Straw blinds. Concrete-cemented floor. Glass wall or perhaps open air ventilated room.

I wonder if this room will be too hot to handle in Malaysia's climate.

Of 3 Months Old Ruhi

This is what I wrote on the second week of 2012. 

Time flies by so fast, work mounting up (as always), I had resolutions, some I already failed to maintain, some I haven't start.

Biggest plan so far this year? I don't know. We would like to have a baby. We would like to live in the same house to raise the baby. Meaning, I am (very soon) applying for a quarters. I never imagined to be living in the very heart of capital city. But it looks like it's the best option so far, so my husband wouldn't have to travel another 50km to reach me. And I wouldn't have to travel far to work.

But am I ready to be a mother?

With preparations, I could.

What a year that has passed!

We had a baby exactly a year after I wrote them. I applied for quarters, called them somewhere during October and said the application was being processed (and some more that the 2008 applications were still being processed).

We bought a house.

Not yet bought, anyway. Just had paid the deposit and in the middle of loan processing. More on that later.

And Ruhi to turn 3 months old next week. Alhamdulillah. Our girl is healthy, and kicking. She loves to kick her legs in the air, that is.

Ruhi 7 weeks old

Ruhi 10 weeks old

And she's still exclusively breastfed. She's turning 3 months old means that my paid maternity leave has come to its end. And welcome to another 3 months (unpaid) leave. This has become one of my life's major decisions - to take a half year leave to exclusively breastfeed my first child, to care for her within my eyes, to live as a family. 

To our Ruhi, you are such a brilliant child. A pleasant to our eyes. Umi and Abi cannot wait for more happy months and years with you.

Of Serambi

I was inspired by this scene of a Korean drama "If In Love Like Them" a few weeks ago. I pointed this scene out to my husband and said I liked this architecture (well, it's not so much architecture - it's just how people create the space and use the space - it's architecture in some way). My husband said that I was fooled by the production team. The things I learnt from dramas or movies are not real.

"Mostly are make-ups. They do not depicts the real culture and lifestyle of the people." He used to live in Japan for 6 years and he saw them with his own eyes. Ookay... (-.-'). But they still might be doing what I thought they are doing. You didn't see everything (so do I!)  After all, culture and perceptions of culture are different for every person.

So, I'd like to keep the good interpretation of things I have with this scene.

Raised deck.. people congregate together.. one washing clothes.. one making kimchi.. one exercising.. sandals and shoes tucked under the deck.. woven mat spread on the deck.. sliding door opened for good ventilation..

If any Malays in Malaysia can recall, we also used to have serambi (deck) in our traditional Malay home. It's the place where people sit down in the afternoon, sipping coffee and munching kuih muih while chatting with the neighbours. I remember my father's grandparents' house where we used to live. The serambi was the forefront of the house, and anything forefront was considered formal so Boyot (or moyang - great grandparents) had a pangkin (big, elevated bench) constructed under the house. Everyday in the morning, after Zuhur or Asar, she would sit on the pangkin, doing stuff. Sometimes, we even ate lunch there. 

I couldn't remember much as I was only around 7 to 9 years old at the time.  

Serambi, or pangkin is considered a core point of a traditional home. The similarity I saw in traditional Malay house, Korean houses and Japanese houses depicts the culture of these locals. Visitors are sometimes entertained in this area, so it leaves the interior private to the family. Informally, it is used for doing house chores such as preparing meals.

In a scene of Ombak Rindu movie, the pangkin was made from old wooden bed frame. Such an old school, and a great way of recycling or redefining furniture.

I'll make myself more observant while watching movies after this and collect more scenes which reminds me of my culture.