Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Wishing you all a Happy Halloween!
Hoping to share a few things with you all very soon. We are still trying to get back to normal after the craft fair:o)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Get ALL Your Tax back . . .

Visit http://howmuchtaxcanisave.co.cc/

Lets say this year your gross income is $20,000 ( about $ 1,700 a month ), you may start to pay tax.  ( about $10 a month ).


Click the extend + sign to see everything.  Then think of which item is relevant to you.  For below case, this guy can

  • buy a life insurance of $ 3,800
  • buy $500 magazines
  • buy a $2,000 PC 
Make sure keep all the receipts and the receipt dates show 2011.  Then comes 2012 when you are filing your tax, you can get back all your tax deducted by your company !!



The web site is just an estimator or for fun or for educational purpose only.  Your actual tax plan and figures may subject to your very own unique condition.  Do consult a proper tax consultant or IRB is providing FREE advices when it is near tax submission date.

Enjoy !!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

This Just Pinned

Afternoon Snack

I made the kiddos some cookies this afternoon. Huge hit:o)
For some reason I have been in the baking mood. I have made a peach cobbler and chocolate oatmeal cookies in the past week too. 
Could it be that I am a stress eater and I am freaked out about this craft fair? 
maybe:o)
Anyway, I found a great cookie & icing recipe over at Girl Inspired today. The cookies were really really tasty...yes, were..not are...just kidding. I left a few for the hubs;o) I froze less than half of them for another day:o)
I hope that you all are having a great Tuesday. Mine would be slightly better if the cleaning fairy would show up;o)

Robert Kiyosaki copied our article ?

Finally, even a guru like Robert Kiyosaki has to copy MalPF article and post as his own ...


just kidding, of course.

Friday, October 14, 2011

First Item for Craft Fair Completed

These pictures are terrible..I should have taken them while the sun was still on this side of the house, but I am too excited about finally completing an item for the craft fair....that's in TWO WEEKS! 
 The rocking chair was given to me by some dear friends. It was a cherry color before I had my way with it.. The seat cushion is covered in an antique grain sack, and the skirt is a ruffled painter's drop cloth.
 This is when I should have taken the pictures...if only the rocking chair had been done then:o)
Isn't this aster bush amazing?
This bush is unbelievable. When I planted this last year, it looked like a dying twig...
see picture below.
Can you believe that is the same plant?!?
Beautiful!!
We have lovingly named it the "Mozzie" Bush. Mozzie was my great grandmother, and one of the sweetest women that graced the earth. This plant started in her garden, and has been passed along to several family members and friends...what a way to remember such a beautiful person! 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Happenings....with very little motivation!!

There hasn't been too much going on in the crafting realm...I have been tending to sick children (they're better now) and nursing a cold. There have been days where we were bored to tears, and days where boredom would have been welcomed.
The hubs has started working on redoing the back yard...it is going to be beautimous! I can't wait to see how it all turns out. He used a sod stripper the other day and pulled out a ton of grass. Here the little ones are helping daddy clean up.

 Here is evidence of how I had wished for a boring day:o)
 S.R. lopped off half of her hair which caused Mommy dearest to come out:o) I was one UN-happy camper. Thankfully the child was blessed with naturally curly hair, so the 2 inch long hair blends in with the rest. She went from this:

to this:
 I had to cut 3 and 1/2 inches off the back of her hair....oh well...thankfully it grows back!! Oh yeah, this was also the same day when E locked the dog in the outdoor toy basket and we thought he was lost in the neighborhood...um, yeah, we were so glad when 8 p.m. rolled around:o)
In other news, our homemakers club is hosting a craft fair. I am going to have a booth. I am really lacking any motivation to get anything done for my booth. I have been focusing mainly on advertising...
I have started on a few things, though.
  Hymnal wreaths are in the works. 
 I also have some signs and chalkboards that I am working on.
Small furniture and some shelving will be added in too...I am kind of making things up as I go along:o)For those of you in the area, we would love for you to show some love and attend...check out the homemakers' blog, HERE, for more information.

Friday, October 7, 2011

A new level of Frugality

Frugality in Kuala Lumpur has just gone one level deeper.  A saving of about $550 monthly, a 2 hours exercise sessions for FREE and an opportunity to explore natures within the city has just been proven recently with just ONE simple ACT !  As everything goes, there is some trade off or 'risk' too ...

Its Cycling To Work !

Mathew was a guy who suffers from a terrible 24.3% inflation in 2009.  After he started to follow this blog, he has learned a trick or two to keep things going smoother.  Today he is working as a top executive in a public company but situation hasn't changed much.  He is still in middle level income group.  After his 5 figures income divided by the number of people he has to support, his actual cash-at-hand per person monthly is much less than average personal income ie. $1,500.

Many staffs who worked for Mathew always complains about how tough their lives are and demand a salary increment without extra performance to the company ( while their single income is about $1,500 as well).  Mathew thinks it was obvious his staffs weren't educated well enough in personal finance so he decided to role model to show a point - live frugally.

He used to drive about an hour to work, commute about 22 km and then spent about $10+ for parking fee.  Now instead of doing all that, now

He cycles to work

After the decision was made, he first bought a huge term insurance to cover this temporary needs.  After all, he doesn't want his teaching to his staff to affect his even more important loves to his families.

Once the insurance is approved, he started cycling to work.  It wasn't easy.  He first followed his driving route.  It was dangerous as cars and motorbikes are cruising fast by, ignoring his existence.  But the good thing about cycling . . . is that its both a pedestrian and a driver.  So very soon he found a much shorter and safer path, only 12.1km instead of driving 22 km away.


It took him about one hour to cycle to work.  ( Above 2.5 hours was for walking time )  So practically this doesn't affect any of his schedule at all.  As a matter of fact, this improve the stability of his schedule.  Even when there is an unexpected traffic jam which would cause a normal 1 hour driving to 2-3 hours, his cycling time remains the same as 1 hour.


Mathew also lost 6-8kgs since then, has a much tougher built body now.  He used to pay a lot joining fitness centers etc. but never got the time to actually exercise because he is a workaholic.  Now he HAS TO exercise 2 hours a day.

Mathew also started a health diet to eat more veggie and fruits even before this cycling idea.  Thanks to this cycling exercise, his cycling route passed by a local market at Chow Kit ( one of the oldest and largest wet market in Kuala Lumpur ), he now manages to buy 5 star fruits for only $1, which fuel his breakfast and lunch.

There are much more indirect benefits he received since he started cycling to work.  But as everything goes, there must be some Cons that comes with the Pros.  Should one accident happens during his cycling commute, it would most probably cost him his life.  While he was well aware of the risk, he took action to insure against that rick and he also find ways to improve his own skills and awareness to maximize his own safety.

There are quite a lot of tips and tricks he has developed since he cycles to work.  If you were moved by this article and wanted to try this too . . . be warn ahead, there is some risks involved.  Do spend some time to buy me a cup of coffee so I can share with you whatever those tips and tricks are so that you can minimize your risk and maximize your return / saving / investment.


DrivingCycling
Time1 hour1 hour
Petrol$10 per day$0
Parking$5 - $10 per day$0


I am just glad living frugally in a city like Kuala Lumpur has just gone one level deeper.  With tons of other extra benefits and with only ONE major risk that a person who really cares can mitigate easily with skills and experience.

Have you managed to find any innovative ways to cut your expenditure or increase your saving by 25% !?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sew Much Fun

 Yesterday I was a short order seamstress. The kids are on fall break right now. So I decided that they could tell me what they wanted me to make them, and I would make it right then and there....they loved it! 
E got a pirate hat and pretend watch, and S.R. got a princess cape and mask. 
While they were napping, I made S.R. this Halloween shirt. 
 This time of year is the only time that it is appropriate to wear such ghastly colors all at once:o)

For those of you who are from my hometown...S.R. will be donning her new "Boo" shirt at a certain high school athletic event involving a white ball and net tonight:o) Maybe we will see you there!!

 While we are on the subject of shirts...I made this one for S.R. a few weeks back for our family pictures.
 The picture taking process was excruciating. There was a melt down, and then funny faces, hands in the mouth, tempers flaring, etc...but we all looked cute:o) The pictures turned out fantastic, and I can't wait to share them with you all.
Anywhoodles, back to the shirt..I really wanted to do a peek-a-boo shirt for her. I think they are so sweet and I had never made anything like this before...
I am really happy with the results.
Yes, I am completely aware that this shirt is in desperate need of an iron, but laziness has overcome me at this point:o)
 So what have you been sewing these days?
Have you tried out a new pattern? 

Monday, October 3, 2011

Interview : FatherSez - fathersez.com

FatherSez is one of the pioneers in Malaysia Personal Finance blogsphere.  He started his first blog post on 8 September 2007, one year earlier than this blog.  He has always been one of the great minds I wanted to meet in person one day.  But little did I know back then, opportunity fade away sooner than I thought.  FatherSez passed away on 4 August 2009.


Although we never met and now lost the chance to ever meet again, we never feel far apart.  During earlier years even after 100 posts, I was still a skeptic about blogging.  It was actually FatherSez who found my sharing useful and kept me going.

Even years after his departure, I never forget every single word we transact online; through our virtual identities.  But he was busy with his venture and I was busy with my entrepreneurship back then as well.  We never met in person although both of us wanted to.  Well, at least I wanted to ( Fathersez received too many requests to meet that he couldn't accommodate to all . . . )

FatherSez is unique in his own way because it was clearly a message from parent to kids.  It was written with a legacy in mind, for the kids and the future.  I haven't read a personal finance blog that is as parental, as philosophical, as practical and most truthfully show his love toward his kids without reservation.


I was very scare and afraid after confirming the fact that he did pass away 7 months after his departure.  I worry his web site will be shut down very soon.  But 2 years down the road, I managed to contact one of his legacy, Azah.  And words cannot describe how grateful I am when I know FatherSez is still alive today.  This simply means whatever message FatherSez wanted to deliver has been well received.

What else can be more grateful 
than after you are gone, 
your messages are still 
being hold tight by someone ?

I have conducted email interviews to some of the personal finance web sites or blogs recently.  Fathersez is one of them.  Since I couldn't reach Fathersez anymore, I made a request to his legacy.  To my surprise, she accepted the interview request ...




At young age, Fathersze was one of those where today's basic necessity was not readily given by nature.  He had to walk 12km to school.  Luckily his uncle had supported him mostly not from any monetary form but most critically important - the existence of love and family tie.  Also thanks to his uncle?  Fathersez was exposed to accounting at early age, as early as his primary school time working in a cloth selling shop.  This was one of the key differentiation why he was able to contribute so much to our personal finance blogsphere today.  For other luckier kid like me, I was only worrying what lunch I can have with my 50 cents pocket money for that day.

. . . here is the original interview scripts . . . with minor censorship for privacy reason.

If you were also a FatherSez follower before you read this, you would most probably agree with me that a FatherSez 2.0 is in the making.  The way Azah write and feel for herself and also on behalf of Fathersez, clearly show how great a legacy FatherSez had left behind.  And how similar she is to her father.  And yet with a touch of 21st century of her own.

Lastly, a word for my dear friend Fathersez, for science or for faith, I hope one day you can read this . . . one way or another, I want you to know without a single doubt, a stranger like me . . .  miss you very much too.