Dependence

They say not to depend your happiness on someone or something, but sometimes it necessary to do so. Why? Because to generate happiness requires an object or idea; you have to be happy about something. I guess you could be happy for the sake of it, but who are you trying to please? Ultimately, we are all in search for meaning- the meaning of life…what it means to be happy, what it means to succeed, what it means to mean something to someone. Whatever the desire, we are all inevitably searching for meaning of some kind. We depend on ourselves for perseverance, for strength and for happiness…we are depending on ourselves to depend on ourselves. It is just a continuous loop. Maybe instead we should seek to embrace those around us and allow ourselves to divide our dependence, so that we are not pressuring ourselves to create this mindset where we are constantly trying to please ourselves- trying to find a reason to be happy and trying to generate a feeling that is not fully attainable. What I mean is, we are capable of creating our own happiness; but when we do is this happiness true? Is it completely reflective of how you are truly feeling on the inside? There is no right answer. But in my opinion when I am with other people ad with my loved ones, the happiness that I feel is greatly exceeds that of the self-generated. This may not be true for all, however I truly believe that in order to be emotionally connected to yourself and the world around, there is a need to depend on others.

Having said that, your dependence on others should not be 100% because once (for example) the person who you depend on for a good laugh exits your life; you may be left to fill the void. If you only had depending on this person for 50% of your laughs, you only have to fill half a void versus if you depended 100%.

I am contradicting myself a bit..I think what I am trying to articulate in this mess is that do not be afraid of depending a portion of your happiness on other people because at the end of the day they will amplify this emotion. But on the other hand, maintain a proportion of happiness to be self generated because people are like the ocean; they come and go.

P.S I hope this post made sense

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The place in between

Do you ever just get stuck? Metaphorically speaking. There’s this weird place I’ve discovered recently, where I am not happy nor sad- but somewhere in between that is somewhat indescribable. Perhaps, this is not a feeling but rather a desire; a desire to feel. The human mind is both fascinating and confusing to me, there are things that simply so not amount to words- things that are indescribable, things that are beyond the capacity of science…yet we somehow know what they are. Emotions, thoughts, feeling, consciousness they are all phenomenons that we know to be true yet cannot actually prove it. For example what is dreaming? Why its when you see vivid real images while we sleep. But how exactly do we know those images are real? We have all had dreams, but how do we know that what you classify as a dream is the same as the people around you? Likewise, how do we know that the colour red is the same red that the person next to you is seeing through their eyes? It may be darker, it may be lighter or it may not even be red, it may be orange for that matter. How do we know that what is happening right now is reality? How can we prove that? My reality may be true, but is my reality the same as yours and is your reality the same as mine? Also, what about the past? They say the past shapes who we are as both individuals and as a society; but how can we be certain that any of the events in the past actually happened? Lets say we can be sure because of the many different interpretations of the same event (like teh holocaust) but are the recounts of the events plausible? Each recount is a different version of the same event; none of them will be identical to the last- because of the fact that one’s pain may be another’s strength and one’s weakness may be another’s victory. People obscure and twist stories to make themselves central to their experiences; if and when they articulate their memories bits will be left out and bits will be emphasised. Nothing is objective; everything is subjective. Something may seem objective but the nature of the human mind cannot help but have a ‘mind’ of its own (pun intended)

The art of acceptance

I know it’s been a while since I blogged…so about a week or so ago I was waiting at the bus stop as per usual, and as I was waiting a girl approached me to ask about the bus times. Now, this girl was one of those people who you knew had a hard time everywhere they go; with huge teeth, big nose and stringy hair, she was no the modern depiction of so called ‘beauty’. What troubles me is that I had already formed a preconceived idea of who this girl was without even talking to her. And as we engaged in casual conversation I found out how real this person was. Her hardships made mine seem minuscule in comparison; stories of abuse and torment that made me feel extremely ashamed of myself for judging such a damaged soul. Every aspect of her life effected based on the way she looked- dropping out of uni due to constant death threats and people casting away her artwork. As I continued to talk to her I realised just how much she needed someone to express her feelings to, how much she needed a friend. In those 20 minutes spent with her, I learnt a very valuable lesson. It may seen very cliche but I don;t think people truly understand the importance of  not ‘judging a book by its cover’ until they experience such a lesson. We can talk good of ourselves and create a desirable persona but to really be that creation we must have certain experiences before we become who we aspire to be.

What I’m most upset about is the fact that society has conditioned us to believe that persons attributes are enhanced by their appearance, or in other cases negative attributes are overlooked. For example a person who is both good looking and kind-hearted automatically becomes a person who is looked up to by others around them. Where as someone who is not deemed good looking but also possesses the kind-hearted trait will receive less recognition simply due to their appearance. How does the shape of your nose, the size of your eyes, the arch in your eyebrows in anyway dictate your personality? It just frustrates me that the degree to which someone is ‘caring’ or ‘sweet’ is emphasised by the way they look and not by the nature of the trait itself. Can we not just accept people for the way they have been created- for the way God or for the way our cells have arranged themselves to form a unique being.

I just feel like this has been discussed time and time again but nothing really has been done; and with the introduction of social media people feel the pressure to be somewhat presentable at all times, just in case someone posts an unsuspecting image of them. I guess forces of technological development and out of our hands but the development of society and eliminating fixed ideals is certainly a possibility. What do you think?         

The start of vegan-ism

So a few days ago I decided to ‘trial’ a vegan diet…1. because I wanted to lose weight and 2. because I wanted a challenge. So far I’m feeling less bloated, more energetic and ‘lighter’ in a sense; it’s been tough though…not going to lie I did cheat a couple times (unintentionally) but that’s what this is about I guess, overcoming obstacles.

Anyway, there is another reason for this post; I made a Vegan banana bread/loaf yesterday that I absolutely loved, so I though I’d share it with you guys!

INGREDIENTS

  • About 3 cups oatmeal (you can use gluten free if you wish)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 tablespoon olive or coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar, plus 1 tablespoon (I used coconut sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 squares of 70% dark chocolate (or- of course- vegan chocolate chips) – optional but strongly encouraged
  • 3 tablespoons oatmeal
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Tried to make it look all pretty but I guess I’m still new to this whole blogging thing haha:P

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 175.C (or 350F) and line a 23x13cm loaf pan (or 9×5 inch)…to be honest I just used a random loaf pan I had:P
  2. Place your oats into a blender and blend for a 1-2minutes until it resembles flour; you may need to give it some help by stirring it to surface the oats that are still whole
  3. Measure our 2 cups of your oat flour into a bowl and add the other dry ingredients and whisk until everything is well incorporated
  4. Place the banana, vanilla extract, oil and sugar and beat until well combined and creamy; pour in your dry mix and fold until just combined…DO NOT OVERMIX then fold in the chocolate
  5. Pour into prepared loaf pan and sprinkle the 3 tablespoon of oats as well as the 1 tablespoon of sugar. Then bake for 30-40mins
  6. Loaf is done when a skewer inserted comes out clean. Cool for 10-15mins before removing from pan

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NOTES

  • If batter is too thick for your liking, you can add some almond milk, soy milk, coconut milk etc. to loosen it up
  • If cut into 10 slices…152 cal, 2.6g fat, 3.3g of protien and 29.6g of carbs

Credit to ambitiouskitchen.com for the amazing recipe!

The rest of the holiday plus epic plane ride!

Been a bit busy lately since I came back from Brisbane, so haven’t been very active…any who here is the rest of my holiday!

DAY 9

The day was pretty relaxed and chilled to begin with, I spent the morning lazing around and uploading the previous post before deciding to head out to Carindale and suss out a dress to wear for my cousins graduation.

OOTD!
OOTD!
SOTD! (Selfie of the day;))
SOTD! (Selfie of the day;))

I didn’t end up finding a dress, but I found a really cute play suit though!

After I walked around a bit more, my Aunty wanted to meet up with me so we could look for Christmas presents for my 奶奶 (grandma) and my 爷爷 (grandpa). I remember meeting her at a mini bar because she had spent the last 3hrs out touring a university campus with her English class…on a 30+ degree day!! So when I found her I couldn’t help but laugh at her; red faced and downing a large glass of white.

I later met up with my cousin and her boyfriend to drive over to visit my second cousins; when I last saw them- a year ago- the were so much littler and younger! This time I saw them the youngest could already stand. I couldn’t help but mock the situation we were in since in Chinese our second cousins are regarded as our Aunties and Uncles, because they are our parents cousins and our cousins are what we call ‘adoptive brothers and sisters’ hence being aunties and uncles. Hopefully that made sense haha…

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We stayed at their house for a longer than expected due to some heavy thunderstorm; after it had eased a bit, we said our goodbyes and met up with a friend for some pho and bubble tea. No, you cannot get any more Asian then that.

DAY 10

Last full day in Brisbane:(

My cousin and I woke up really early to head out to the city and have breakfast before getting ready for her big day (by ‘big day’ I mean her graduation ceremony not her wedding haha)

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The ferry ride to the place we had breakfast!
The ferry ride to the place we had breakfast!
Not the sunniest day but still nice!
Not the sunniest day but still nice!

The ceremony started at 2pm but my cousin had to get there a bit earlier to suit up and do a run through.

The actual ceremony was really inspiring with really motivational guest speakers and even an activity that required some graduates to walk on glass in front of the whole audience! Definitely the most interesting presentation I’ve been too.

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DSC_4487   DSC_4475 The event ended with a live performance of On top of the world by Imagine Dragons and a shower of balloons and glitter…the perfect way to end in my opinion!

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We spent the rest of the night celebrating with cheap chicken wings – which my cousin and her boyfriend shared 30 of…- while I stuck to my quesadillas. We played pool and wasted the night away talking and meeting new people.

LAST DAY…THE CRAZY PLANE RIDE!

Another early morning because we spent the night in the city and needed to be back at home by 8am to pack in time for my 10:40 flight back to Melbourne. When we got home at around 7;30 I thought I had plenty of time to pack and shower before heading to the airport…turns out I was so wrong. I had misread/ forgotten the actual time of my flight and instead of 10:40am like I thought it was it was actually 9;15am! So seeing this I cussed a few times before composing myself (sorta) and found everything in the house that was mine and shoved it into my suitcase; at this point my cousin was freaking out too but I was confident I had enough time because at this point it was only about 8am; we picked up my cousins boyfriend and began our trip to the airport. Usually a 15min drive turned into a half an hour trip due to a car accident on the highway…even my cousin said that this road was never congested! By the time I got the airport there was still 30mins to take off so I sprinted over to the check in counter but unfortunately I didn’t make and had to take the next available flight back to Melbourne at 2:20pm.

We went back home and had some breakfast and watched a movie while I packed my stuff neatly back into my suitcase; we left at 12:00 because we did not want to miss another flight. When I got to the airport my flight had been delayed by 20mins which wasn’t too bad…but then another 20mins was added on…the another 20mins…

Finally we boarded the plane at 2:50pm for a 3pm take off; but when we hadn’t moved for 15mins we knew something was up…turns out a storm had broken out and the weather conditions were too severe to fly in, and passengers were required to wait inside the plane until the conditions had calmed. 45mins had passed and the current pilots had exceeded their flight times and we had to wait 90mins+ for other pilots to arrive. When they had finally arrived we did not take off until 6:30pm as we were 8th in queue for take off…all the passengers cheered when we finally took off!

All in all were stuck in the plane for 6hrs total…lets just say its a trip I will not forget; touching down in Melbourne at 10pm I knew there was no way I could make the train back home, so I stayed at my cousins apartment in the city and woke up early the next morning to catch a 3hr train back home.

Although this trip was less fun than my usual ones, it was an adventure nether the less…can’t wait for the next one!

Holidays so far

My time here in Queensland has been so amazing that I’ve neglected to update my blog so here is a collection of photos from day 3-8!

DAY 3 

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On this day my Aunty was eager to take me out to a place called ‘Wellington Point’ that was fairly close to where she lived; she insisted that we each take a book and spend a relaxed day at the local cafe. So that’s how I spent a large part of that day, drinking my chai tea and finishing off Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, and that to me is the epitome of a holiday.

At night my cousin took me to karaoke; which is something we do every time I come up here. We belted our current favourites, as well as some timeless old-school songs.

DAY 4

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Thursday I went out for lunch to catch up with a friend I hadn’t spoken to (face-to-face) for a pretty long time; we went to ‘Hogs Breath’ and chatted a bit- catching up on each others lives- while our wraps slowly made their appearance onto the table. I met a bunch of his mates, including this one girl (Angela*) who had the most loveable personality- she was easy to talk to and really knew how to make a good first impression (haha). She worked at a little store called ‘Hipster Ice’ where they sold ginormous shaved ice desserts, flavoured with sweet syrups and assortments of candy. I posted a picture of it on my instagram if you would like to check it out- I ordered a monstrocity called the ‘Flat White’, pretty ironic if you ask me

We later decided to watch the latest instalment of the ‘Hunger Games’ trilogy (Mockingjay Part 1), a movie in which both of us had anticipated in watching for quite sometime. The movie did not disappoint and I cannot wait for the final part next year!

Thursday ended with some late night shopping as a met up later in the evening with my cousin, who had to be rescued due to forgetting her wallet. She really wanted to buy her mum and stepdad gifts in honour of her finding a well paid job, how sweet of her right?

DAY 5

In the evening my cousin planned to spoil us by buying us (Uncle, Aunty and I) dinner. We went to an authentic little Greek restaurant (named appropriately ‘Little Greek Tavern’) where we order a whole lot of seafood dishes, washed down with coffees and dessert

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This is after my cousin gave her mum and stepdad the gifts we chose the day before; the joy that is depicted in this picture just says it all.

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Day 6

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Saturday we woke up early to clean up the house for an inspection at mid-day; although it was extremely tedious, the holiday vibe took over and made the time into something that was really enjoyable. I don’t know about you guys but we really just love to pump up the music and clean (haha)

The rest of the day was a much needed girls day- we got manicures and shopped till out hearts content. We had a light dinner at a cute Japanese restaurant before feasting at Max Brenners- which if you do not know is THE most delicious chocolate dessert place ever. After that we stayed at my cousins apartment in the city and watched movies till 2am.

DAY 7

We got up late Sunday morning/afternoon and headed out to an Italian eatery called ‘Va Piano’ the set up was really unique; you could say it was like a high class cafeteria or fast food joint. Instead of waiters taking your order, there were different stations for various categories of food; for example their was one for salads, one for pastas and one for pizza and so on. You would line up at the station corresponding to what you wanted and order; they would then make it on the spot while you waited.

I think because all their efforts were directed away from waiters/waitresses their interior design of the place was so superb that it made up for the lack of table service.

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After lunch we watched another movie ‘Alexander and the horrible, no good, very bad day’ which despite being a kids movie; had us all in stitches.

The photo below doesn’t really have anything to do with the movie, other than it was at the venue (haha) I actually cannot wait to see that movie though!

DSC_4415Day 8

Yesterday I had originally planned to go swimming, but the weather did not work in my favour as it was thunder storming majority of the day. But I did have a nice relaxing time at home catching up on ‘Bones’ and doing some pilates. The highlight of the day was when my cousin came home from work and took me to get  ice-cream at BR (haha) I’m still a kid on the inside;)

*names have been altered for privacy