grateful heart

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I just celebrated my birthday at the weekend, so close to my 5th decade already! A thought crossed my mind; will I live to see my 50th, 60th, 70th or 80th birthday? Actually something else triggered this line of thought, a visit to my bereaved friend’s place mid last week. She’s a lovely 70 year old lady who I befriended just over a decade ago. We first met at the local library where we chatted casually. She was skeptical however when she learned that I home-educated my children. I remember how she challenged my views, she’s of the old school where there’s only one route to education. However, over the years she’s become rather fond of me and vice versa. As my children grew older she could see that I’ve done a fairly good job in educating them. She respects me for it and I value her wisdom, advice and friendship. She also loves reading, hence our first meeting at the library many moons ago. So you can imagine how well we got along over the years. Despite the age gap, I can relate to her easily each time we met and chatted.

The last time I bumped into her at the library again (late last Autumn), she told me that her husband of 50 years has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. It was sudden, no one saw it coming. Then we heard of his passing in early January. I managed to pop round to see her last week, she was grateful I came. She was calm but I caught the tears in the corner of her eyes. She told me how her husband refused any further treatments. Her husband had said that he’s had a good long fulfilling life (he turned 87 just before he died). He didn’t want his life prolonged any further. And 50 years of marriage, what more can she ask for? Everyone has to go someday, like it or not. Main thing is to focus on the blessings, the times you’ve shared together. Her words rang in my head for a while afterwards. I hugged my husband tight and cried when I got home. I realised the future is not ours to see, life is like an open-ended storybook. My parents had 34 years together, until my dad passed away suddenly too. What about us? What’s in store for us? How long have we got left?

I can worry and wonder all I want, but it wouldn’t do me any good. You can’t go around living your life like that. You’re supposed to take one day at a time. You focus on the present, you live from moment to moment. You be thankful for all the little things that come your way each day. You be grateful that you’re still alive! I’m reminded of my elder sister at this point, yes, I had an older sister who died in infancy. She was named Siti Baizura. My mom used to tell me how fair and beautiful she was, even as a baby. We visited her grave every year on Eid when I was growing up in Penang. I sometimes wonder what it would have been like had my sister lived. But I’ll never find out. My sister died, I was born a year later. I cheered my parents up just by being born, I took their grief away. They never forgot their eldest who died, it was apparent from the graveyard visits. But their focus shifted, they were happy once again and blessed with 3 more daughters!

I end this post with a grateful heart. I cannot foresee my future but I shall focus on the present and learn from the past. I’m grateful for every little thing; the air I breathe, the roof above my head, the food on my table. I’m grateful for the chance to continue living, to love and to be loved. I don’t know how long I’ve got, only God the Almighty knows. But I am ever so grateful for the 48 years I’ve had, I know I’ve been very blessed. The miracle of living, to experience a glimpse of heaven on this earth, for that I can only put my hands up and say, Alhamdulillah (Praise be to God)!!! And now let me get back to filling the pages of my open-ended storybook, somehow I’m not so afraid anymore…

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birthday bouquet from my family in Malaysia!

One of my favourites back in the 80s, I think it holds a new meaning for me now….

old songs

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Greetings again! On to my second post of the year! Since my Instagram is already full of my family pictures and activities, I’ve kind of decided that my blog should focus more on myself. But you never know, it might change again as I go along, I’ll see how it goes anyway. As my regulars would know, I’m quite fond of including songs at the end of my blog posts. But you’d be surprised if I tell you that I hardly listen to them any longer. I think I kind of stopped listening to songs when my children came along one after another. It was only when I started blogging that I looked up for songs that meant something to me in the past. I thought it would be a nice way of spicing up my posts for a bit.

I started enjoying songs a lot as a teenager whilst at boarding school in Malaysia. We’re talking about growing up in the 80s here, the songs then were simply awesome! Not like today’s rubbishy trashy ones. Even all the supermarkets I shop at tend to play songs from the 80s and 90s most of the time, probably targeting middle aged moms and dads like me. We’ll buy more when we feel good, right? The moment the more recent songs come on I can’t wait to get to the checkout counter and leave! That’s how much I loathe them. Even my youngest girl who’s almost 8 agrees with me. She’s got good taste. But certainly not my eldest son who is 17!

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The good old days, with my best buddies from boarding school. Can you spot me?

Anyway, one of the cassettes (no CDs yet back then) I remember proudly owning of was Debbie Gibson’s. She’s about my age and I absolutely adored her, used to dance to her songs all day long. I’m sure both my younger sisters would remember if they read this post! We used to call the Royal Australian Air Force radio station based in mainland Penang to request for songs (I grew up on Penang Island, Malaysia). The DJ was Australian of course and the radio show was for the Australian expats living in Malaysia. But I tried my best to sound like an English speaking girl just to get my favourite songs aired. What a joy when most of the time he played them, I’m not sure whether he realised I was just a local Malaysian girl who was into music big time!

Alright, I guess I won’t blabber on too much this time around. Still trying to get the hang of blogging again! But yes, it does get easier for sure as several of you commented. I certainly feel much more positive after pouring my heart out about dealing with negative people in my debut post. Good to know I’m not alone. People are people, just have to deal with them the best we can, even the difficult ones! Anyway, hope you enjoy this Debbie Gibson number I used to love. Brings back memories of my teenage self bopping along to it. Hard to imagine, I know! But hey, everyone’s young once upon a time, right? When I reminisce the good old days I can’t help but smile. Always young at heart…

welcome 2017

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welcome 2017 words on spring note book

Greetings everyone! This feels kind of weird, me getting back to my blogging world after a whole year’s break! I have to take baby steps I suppose, hopefully in time I’ll get the hang of it once more. I miss writing down my thoughts and feelings like I used to. As a result I crammed everything in my 2016 diary! But this time around I think I’ll not post countless of pictures to accompany them. Instagram is a better platform for that! So you’ll have to bear with my writing here more than anything else.

Plenty has happened to my family and I within a year, both good and bad. But such is life, as humans we amble along and make the best of whatever comes our way. Some things are beyond our control, we just have to live by it. No matter how awfully painful. Like the death of a loved one for instance. But other circumstances like dealing with annoying or difficult people, those who constantly try to bring you down, or those who don’t really hear what you’re saying, is more manageable (but challenging) I think. It’s well within your power to handle the situation the way you think best. What would you do? Easier said than done though sometimes. Depends on your relationship with that person. I used to be tolerant of such people who surround my life, but of late, I’ve had quite enough. Maybe I’m getting older and wiser, or perhaps I’m just tired of it all.

But then the more pure hearted you are, the more likely you are to get hurt. There are people out there who use you sometimes (intentionally or unintentionally), they don’t really care how you feel inside. We lead such busy lives these days, who has time for that sensitive soul? Nope, they don’t care at all. So let it be. You can either choose to get hurt each time, or move on. I say let’s get a move on! Life is so short after all. Close that door firmly behind you, look ahead. There must be others who love you unconditionally, no matter how imperfect you are. There are those who choose to close their eyes to your flaws and recognise your worth. There are genuine people who’s always there for you, both in good times and bad times. Focus on those beautiful souls. They are the ones who make life worth living…

I usually end with a song! This one is in memory of a remarkable singer who shaped my teenage years. Somehow this song also sums up this debut post of mine for 2017. Wishing all my readers and followers a Happy New Year 2017, may it bring you more sunshine than rain. But if it does rain a lot, get that umbrella handy!

moving on

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2016-Happy-New-Year-Wishes

It is with a heavy heart that I write this final post, I’m certain you’ve seen it coming somehow. For months I’ve lost my blogging ‘mojo’. I’ve seen many bloggers before me go through it so it’s not unusual after all. I’ve been blogging for 4 years in total, however you might not find all my posts there as I’ve had to delete quite a few due to limited space. I have too many pictures in my blog, so I’ve moved to a different platform to share them. I find Instagram very convenient, so for those of you loyal followers you can find me there instead as glevum_rose. I don’t know what the future holds; I might return occasionally to blog, you never know. But for now I have to bid you a long farewell. I simply cannot find the time nor inspiration anymore to sit down in front of my computer to blog. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my readers and followers, my blog is nothing much without you reading them. I would like to wish everyone out there a Happy New Year 2016, may this year bring you more sunshine than storms. Nonetheless, do not despair if caught in a bad storm, learn to dance in the rain instead! Wishing you all peace, love and happiness always. Take good care yeah! ❤

Let’s say goodbye with James Blunt…he expresses it so well, always! 

winter blues

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Winter, a lingering season, is a time to gather golden moments, embark upon a sentimental journey, and enjoy every idle hour.  

Winter must be cold for those with no warm memories…

If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant:
if we did not sometimes taste of adversity,
prosperity would not be so welcome.

Hello everyone! Hope you’re all doing well. It’s getting chillier here, time to hibernate. Having said that, this time of the year is the most festive in England, we’ve been out and about a lot of late. Joining in all the festive fayres to keep our winter spirits up. You have to somehow, especially with young children. I need to create as many happy memories for them as my parents have done for me! I have posted many photos on my Instagram, so less of that here. I now find posting photos here a bit tedious to be honest, takes up a lot of time for sure! But one or two doesn’t matter I suppose. So as you’re aware my family and I are still around! As you know, this time of year usually makes me extra melancholy. The weather does get to you, especially the lack of bright sunshine and shorter days (dusk around 4 p.m right now). But it’s kind of nice in a way, time to reflect in front of the fireplace, curled up under a soft blanket with a cuppa tea. All the heartaches of the world can just stay outside with the cold. Adele couldn’t have chosen a better time to release her latest album ’25’ either, lovely numbers to keep my winter blues intact. In the nicest way of course, melancholy but warm. Knowing that I’m happiest right now, Alhamdulillah. When you’re middle-aged like me, you get to look back upon your adolescent years, your 20s and your 30s, and be grateful for all the good times. And you learn from the mistakes you’ve made along the way, as painful as it might have been. You also realise the road less travelled which you took turned out to be the best thing you’ve ever done! Enough chattering, I’m going to bid farewell with my favourite from Adele, enjoy! ❤

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me by a giant Xmas tree, cold but warm!

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my younger two with The Victorians!

MY CURRENT FAVOURITE, SIMPLY BEAUTIFUL…