Search This Blog

Friday, January 30, 2015

Post-grad job hunting: commence

Post-grad job-hunting is more intimidating than I thought it would be. I was so adamant that events life was for me that what I missed the giant flashing signs telling me that it wasn't.


Sure, during my internship, I thoroughly enjoyed myself, especially when it came to actual event days, when all the grueling planning and activities made magic happen. The satisfaction that comes with the close of an event is next to nothing.


The company where I did my internship organized 3 annual events a year, and so all activities would be executed according to the requirements of those 3 events only. Despite acknowledging that other companies would definitely handle many more events than what I experienced during the internship, I did not anticipate a team of less than 10 to be handling 200 events annually, excluding ad hoc jobs.


I scoured JobStreet for jobs that appealed to me, yet still related back to my major. Public relations, in all honesty, is not my cup of tea, especially when so many different people has shown me the many different concepts that public relations can be, and not often in a good light.


Three different companies offered me three different jobs. One that would sacrifice my personal life in the long term, one that will pose the most challenges for me, and one in a suspiciously dingy office in Mid Valley (I might do a separate post on that later).


Regardless of how much I love the exhilaration of being in the events industry, I'm not prepared to sacrifice my personal life for work. The company where I interned had 3 events annually, and while I prepared myself for a heavier workload in other event sectors, I never expected to be posed with 200 annual events excluding ad hoc projects - and all done by a team of less than 10 people.


Even when they emphasized that they are in a lack of manpower, I don't feel adequate enough to take up such a heavy responsibility, and to be honest, I still want to be able to plan dates and vacations ahead of time with my SO, as well as spend public holidays with people in my personal life.


Everyone around me says take whatever job I'm offered now, because it's better than being jobless. And while I do agree with that mantra, I want to at least find a job that I would probably enjoy doing, rather than spending most of my work and after-work hours resenting the job, then resigning less than a year later.


In essence, I'm terrified of the change - I'm terrified of the fact that I might not be able to perform to the expectations potentially set by my resume.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

RECIPE: Chicken soup

Recently I've been cooking more often than I'm used to. And the most cooking I'd typically do would be to stir-fry a bunch of veggies (or more often than not, mushrooms) and make it into a pasta or into some kind of lunchbox-friendly mash.


And typically, it'd involve just boiling/steaming potatoes and/or eggs, then mixing them with some stir-fried mushrooms, maybe? The most complicated thing I made for myself was a pumpkin miso cream sauce pasta, I think.


However, in the recent days, I find myself making shopping lists for the morning market and planning meals for my SO. Apart from my miso chicken (which he likes), most of my other cooking ventures have been hit-and-miss (mostly miss).


The stuff I made revolves around chicken (breast meat, particularly) and miso - my two weapons within the kitchen... kind of... And for the past few times, the food was saved mostly by my SO's more advanced cooking skills (and standards for seasoning).


Today's venture... was also partially saved by him. I made the soup particularly for him, so I asked him to taste it - lack of saltiness, and so he suggested some soy sauce.





Reason why I opted for chicken soup was because I'm more familiar working with chicken, and I read that chicken soup was good for reducing phlegm. And what is more nutritious and warming than a good bowl of homemade, MSG-free chicken soup? I added radish because it's helps clear the lungs (according to another internet article, and because there was still half a radish in the fridge).


Ingredients (makes about 4 Chinese rice bowls of soup, or about 4 smaller servings):
  • 2 pieces of chicken (preferably thigh, bone in and skin on)
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and chopped into large chunks
  • approx. 5-inch block of radish/daikon, peeled and chopped into large chunks
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and quartered (around the same size as the carrots and radishes)
  • 2 stalks celery, washed and chopped into approx. 4-inch lengths
  • 7 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
  • 4 small-medium-sized eryngii mushrooms, split down the center and cut into diagonal chunks
  • pinch of black pepper (best if you can get your hands on some whole black peppercorns, gently crushed)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • enough water to cover everything in the pot

To make: (no photos~)
  1. Place the chicken and veggies into the pot (excluding the mushrooms), and add enough water to just cover everything. Sprinkle on the black pepper/black peppercorns. Put the lid on and heat on medium heat until boiling. You can add a bay leaf or other herb flavors if you like.
  2. Once boiling, turn to the lowest possible heat and simmer for 2-3 hours. You can skim off any oil or scum that floats on the surface if you like.
  3. After 2-3 hours, add the soy sauce and miso paste (spoon the miso paste into a small bowl and dilute with some of the soup before adding into the pot). Stir gently, then add the mushrooms, pushing them down into the soup gently.
  4. Simmer for another hour or so - the longer you cook it, the more flavor there will be. However, if you're using miso, be careful to not overheat or overcook it, as miso loses its flavor easily.
  5. Turn off the heat and leave covered on the stove for about another 1-2 hours (completely optional, but I'm paranoid).
  6. Fish out the chicken and veggies, covering them to keep them warm. Strain the soup if you wish (gets rid of overcooked veggie bits and scum, leaving a clearer soup).
  7. Arrange the veggies and chicken in a bowl, then ladle over the soup and enjoy!

I got the basic recipe for chicken soup from multiple sources - Sorted Food, Allrecipes.com, etc. The typical recipes called for chicken, carrots, onions, and celery. I would have used leek, but I couldn't find any larger leeks at my local morning market. And I also added radishes for good measure.


For serving, I discarded the celery. The onion takes longer to soften than the carrot and radishes, so if you're not going to cook it for that long, maybe you could opt for smaller pieces of onion.


You could use this as a noodle soup base too, I guess. It was good enough on its own though... He was a bit skeptical at first when I just added the miso, soy sauce, and mushrooms (I am surrounded by people with exceptionally sensitive olfactory and taste senses). But after cooking for longer, the raw chicken taste cooked out, and the flavors of the seasonings and veggies got some time to get along and socialize.


Hope this was interesting enough to be helpful as well (what am I even talking about...)!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Win a $100 Amazon Gift Card with Kreydle!

Online shopping is one of the modern wonders of modern people - apart from the shipping and handling fees, you can find practically everything online. You can even do grocery shopping online!


When it comes to online shopping, most people tend to recognize Amazon as one of the first places to getting what they want. Books, electronics, collectibles, you name it. Now what if I told you that with just a simple selfie, you can get your hands on an Amazon gift card worth $100?


The steps are simple:

Remember: "I LOVE KREYDLE!" Your entries don't count if you spell it wrong!
Image source: kreydle.com
1. SNAP YOUR SELFIE

Snap as many photos of yourself with the words "I Love Kreydle". You could take a selfie, or a groufie, but make sure the person submitting has their face visible in the photo! Get creative and even get your friends to join in on the fun, and fit the photo into square ratio (1:1) for Facebook.

If you're not sure about the words, here's a little help.



2. POST TO SOCIAL MEDIA

Once you've got your photo, upload it to Instagram or Facebook with the following caption:

kreydle.net Win $100 Amazon Voucher for Your Selfie! #ilovekreydle
Remember the caption! And set your photo/account to public so that the Kreydle peeps can get your entry!



3. SUBMIT YOUR POST URL

Now that you've uploaded it, you'll need to direct the Kreydle team to your post by submitting your entry through this form. You have until 11th January 2014 to submit your entries. One post counts as one entry.

For example, one photo on Instagram is one entry, and another photo on Facebook is another entry. Here you have two entries. Got it? But it only counts as one if you have the same photo on Instagram and Facebook, so get those creative juices flowing!



4. GET YOUR FRIENDS TO VOTE

The Kreydle team will post submissions within 24 hours on working days (submissions on weekends will be posted on the following Monday), so check out their Facebook page to confirm your submissions.

Voting officially starts on 12th January 2014, so check back here to get your unique voting URL. Winners will be selected on 20th January 2014.


Image source: kreydle.com
5. WIN $100 AMAZON GIFT CARD

The top 10 most popular photos are counted as the winners, and the winners will receive their gift card via email within a week after 20th January 2014.



I'm gonna be spending some time taking some selfies for my chance for the gift card, and you should too. And fast!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Fatal attraction

It's amazing how someone could become so important to you.


Every scent.


Every touch.


Every sound.


Whether or not it's done carelessly seductively, it never fails to just make me fall head over heels over and over again.


I have yet to see two individuals who can coexist in complete peacefulness. Hell, even my best friend and I got into a couple of ruts ourselves. Even those whom I thought were my best of friends earlier on turned out to be just people who had the graciousness to put up with my "bullshit".


Despite all my insecurities and jealousy toward practically every other female (yes, even virtual) that he comes into contact to, time and time again he tells me I'm the only one - in his own words.


His direct approach to honesty gets to me sometimes, in ways that would most probably have provoked me to decapitate the individual who expressed the flaws in my body.


But every day he amazes me - how he can learn things overnight, how people rely on him for things that I can't even begin to fathom, how easy it is for him to craft the perfect product by trial and error. He's simple, but so complex. It's amazing how he can morph into so many different facades so smoothly.


I'm sorry for all the hurt I caused you. I'm sorry for still being insecure. But I still love you more than anything, and may there be an amazing year ahead (and more years to come!).