Friday, November 30, 2012

Welcome to the world, STATE of Palestine...

My dearest daughter watching me from the heavens,

I wish you could have witnessed such a historical day. On 29th November 2012, your beloved land, the one you refused to leave, the one you sacrificed your very life for was acknowledged as a state by the United Nations.

Did we not have an e-mail chat just months ago about the role of the UN and what they could have done to set your land free? 138 member countries of the UN voted in favour of recognising your land my daughter. My country, Malaysia which I maintain to this day has the best beaches (although you say yours are the most beautiful) in the world included.

I wish you could have been there in Gaza to witness today, celebrating in the streets, drinking the best tea in the world which your father would make every Friday as a treat as you would tell me.

I wish we could have celebrated this together.

I wish you were still alive.

I miss you so very very much.

From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!

Love you always,
Ummi Idza

Thursday, November 29, 2012

My Stretch Mark Cream

Hello readers,

A reader has asked me what kind of stretch mark cream I use. During my pregnancy with Airiel, I used a variety, but mostly 2 brands

I realised this 2nd time around that I am allergic to Bio Oil, and when I use it I start getting red splodges on my skin that itches like mad.

So now I am using Pureen and it has worked like a charm so far.  Invest in these creams because those stretch marks are FUGLY babes!.

And I have checked both products and they seem to be Israel free. If anybody knows otherwise,  please let me know.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Boycotting Israeli Products - Does it Work?

“It's the action, not the fruit of the action, that's important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there'll be any fruit. But that doesn't mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi

Hello Everyone,

I was once very ignorant of the concept of boycotting the products that either come from Israel, or support the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

I thought they were rumours which tried to defame products and companies and cannot be trusted. So I ignored them. I was having a chat with my friends the other day and they were of the same view, they all said "What difference does it make if one person aka me boycott? In the end, it only inconveniences myself"

But little did I know that a movement was already in place for some time, systematic and non-violent who does research not only on shareholding, but documented support campaigns and funding to Israel for their war on terror. Let me introduce you to INMINDS. Go to their website and see the work that they have put in. The people behind Inminds transcends gender, religion, race and creed. They consist of muslims, christians, jews and other races who stand united against the war on terror which Israel has perpetrated on Palestine.

Now, in so far as the boycott is concerned, if you do not think they are effective or do not work, let me give you a heads up on the companies and/or organisations who have withdrawn their support and/or divested their shares in companies complicit in their Support for Israel due in part or wholly to the boycott and this is taken from the Inmind website:-

"Why are some of the brands in the previous Boycott Israel Campaign missing from this campaign?

Over time many companies have reconsidered their support for Israel and some have divested from Israel due to many reasons including the accumulated pressure of the boycott. These changes are reflected in the new card.


Disney, working with the Israeli embassy, was given 1.8 million dollars by Israel to promote Jerusalem as the capital of Israel at a special exhibition at its Epcot centre in Florida, strategically positioned so that every visitor to the centre would have to walk through the exhibition in order to reach the exit. Jerusalem is an illegally occupied Palestinian city and under international law can NEVER be the capital of Israel. The exhibition has since been removed so Disney is no longer on the boycott list.

Sara Lee

Sara Lee has divested its large stake in the Israeli textile giant Delta Galil so it along with its two dozen plus brands have all been removed from the boycott list.


Nokia Ventures Organization which had so heavily invested in Israel is no longer part of Nokia and is now called BlueRun Ventures and has many investors now. Note that Nokia is still one of its investors, but its stake in Israel is now no more prominent than countless other technology companies who are not on the boycott list, so Nokia has also been removed from the list.

Arsenal FC

Following a concerted campaign, Arsenal Football Club's contract with the Israeli Tourism board to promote Israel as the teams "official and exclusive travel destination" on its digital perimeter boards (to an estimated 700 million viewers in 198 countries) was not renewed. Subsequently, Arsenal FC has been removed from the boycott list. Note that Arsenal still runs 'Arsenal in the Galilee' coaching project in Israel.


Selfridges flagship store in London was picketed for stocking a range of settlement products including Ahava and soon a boycott of the store followed. It no longer sells Ahava Dead Sea products on its website, although it does advertise Estee Lauder Origins 'body scrubs' which include Dead Sea salts. As part of our strategy of a more focused boycott campaign where individual Israeli brands like Ahava are targeted, Selfridges in no longer on the boycott list."

And so my readers, the boycott DOES work. The aim is not to put people out of jobs or to jeopardise their livelihood, but to inflict enough pressure on boycotted companies so that they withdraw their support and/or pledges for the Israeli government, which as you can see HAS happened. We are not targeting Jewish companies, but rather ALL companies who support the Israeli occupation in Palestine.

Let us all do this, all of us regardless of race, religion, creed and position. I realised when Aisha died that I must be the change that I want to see. And this my way of doing it.  I know I may not see the results in my lifetime but I cannot simply close my eyes and look away and pretend the problem does not exist.

Like I said, she was a lifetime and millions of miles away, and maybe that was why I was never sensitive to the issues that plagued her. If I can convince and change even one person to start this boycott, that I will have succeeded.

From now on, I will also frequently post on alternative products which all households in Malaysia can use that is Israel-free.

Please help me keep Aisha's memory alive, please do not let her death be in vain.

Join me.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Online Shopping 2012 - Part 7

Hello everyone,

I bought these things sometime ago, but just thought I'd share them with you guys.

This beautiful telekung is from Telekung Medina

Bought set no. 3 and 4 from E-Baby

I bought some batik material but the pic was deleted from the fb page before I had a chance to upload it. Anyways, they have some pretty batik for reasonable prices at Yumna Batik.

You can check them out. A number of my readers have asked to post some more info about palestine and how to help and other information about the conflict. InsyaAllah I will from time to time and share what I know.

Have a good weekend everyone

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Death of a Loved One

Every since my miscarriage last year, I have been harbouring a secret.

After my loss, I added on a new family member and I sponsored a child's education in Palestine in secret. None of my family members knew. Aries did not know. She was mine, a child I gained from a loss that I went through. A girl, bright, types perfect English. Sometimes, she would email me and update me on her progress. She wanted to be a lawyer like me.

This morning I found out that she was killed four days ago along with her father in Gaza while walking home from school. She was 12.


I struggle to understand the world she lived in, how she grew up. I even promised her that I would visit her one day and come to her high school graduation which would be about 5-6 years from now.

She would tell me a lot about how she was so used to bomb attacks and air strikes that she no longer feared it. That she would walk to and from school everyday anyway. That the Israeli soldiers would point guns at her and mock her while she walked.

Some kids would urinate in fear. She would just walk away. She said her goal was to get an education and help out in ways other than force i.e. military manner in the West Bank. She said that was why she wanted to  be a lawyer and that was why I was such a blessing to her.

I would tell her about life in Malaysia. How the traffic jams were bad. How Airiel was doing in playschool. How online shopping is the bomb. How we have the best islands and beaches in the world. How in Malaysia different races of different religions live together and tolerate each other. She was really wowed by that, because it was a concept foreign to her. I told her that once she graduated she should visit and stay with me.

She was my child to me as Airiel was, only a million miles and a lifetime away. We talked of the future but also talked about death. I told her, you are bright, leave Gaza and study elsewhere. Come back after your studies and help, what is important is that you and your family survive. But she told me that people in Gaza do not look at life that way. This is her home, her land and she will never have the heart to leave it. They do not fear death, although when it happens, it is always sad for them. Whatever life they have, no matter how short it is, they cherish it to the fullest.

She has seen more death and destruction in her 12 short years than I know I will ever see in a lifetime. But she was bright, full of life and cherished it to the very end.  I always ask her, what can I do to help, what else can I do for the people there and she will say, 'Pray for us, remember us' and that is enough for her.

I did pray for her, for Gaza everyday but that was not enough to save her. She died anyway. Collateral damage as the US and Israelis and the Western World would say. I failed. I didn't do enough. I didn't pray hard enough. My grief I cannot even begin to describe. She was just a child.

I vow from today, to never again touch any product even remotely related to Israel. I will adopt more children from Palestine. I will try to promote awareness about the conflict, at least among my friends. This is the least I can do in HER memory. It may take a massive overhaul and major changes in my life, but I am going to do this and dear Allah, please help me be consistent in this change. Please never let me forget this day.

I will do this for you Aisha.

May you be blessed up there. You say that I was the miracle in your life, but you were wrong, you are MY miracle. Thank you for being present in my life even for a short time to make me realise what is really important in life.

Guys, this is the updated list of products to boycott for 2012. You can get the list from here. Donate, do what you can to make a change.

Have a good rest of the week everyone.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Online Shopping 2012 - Part 6

Hello everyone,

I am back to the office after a long week away for Deepavali. Went back to Mars and thoroughly enjoyed myself. Work was crazy while I was away (hint: erinford injunction to oppose in Kuantan no less) but managed to prepare all the paperwork for the bosses before I left.

Anyways, I have bought a few things over the long weekend.

This is from Kedai Brooch Korea. I figured that since I like shiny things and I don't want to habiskan duit Aries beli barang kemas, might as well go for cheaper shiny options! Hehehe. I usually share these brooches with my mum. So we order and/or buy the ones we like in bulk. Pretty aren't they?

This is for me. Honestly I am no longer interested in leather or patent leather bags. Having an active kid around, I realised that nylon bags last me the most and are the most durable. And this bag is so cute!
This is from Style Exchange.

And something for my mum. This is from Bella Lady Store. Like I said to the young generations of today. Me and Bonda's motto is simple. What our parents want, they get.

A far cry from my grandma being starved to death by not having anything in her kitchen and having to recycle her diapers ehh? (opps, I wonder if this portion will be PHOTOCOPIED and DISTRIBUTED by certain batu api relatives - Baik korang balik kampung opah aku tgk barang dapur dia ada ke tak, pampers dia cukup ke tak daripada dok sibuk mengumpat pasal aku. Ada aku kisah? ) Nauzubillah.

Off to an extremely busy week everyone. You have a good week ahead. And remember no matter how bad it is for you, it cannot be as bad as the suffering as our brothers and sisters in Gaza. So just suck it up ok?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Reading List 2012 [Part 4] - Percy Jackson series

Hello everyone,

It has been a very busy week. Phewww...

Anyways, in my moments of stress and my family members know this. I either tidy stuff or read to chase the blues away.

And so being preggers, tired and stressed...I walked into Borders and saw a BARGAIN. Buy 1 book and get the 2nd for 50% off. I know some people would think that I am so lame because now there's this e-book thing, but I just can't seem to get into the groove of reading e-books. I still like the real thing.

And you know what made me drool, I saw the Percy Jackson series under the deal section. So I just had to buy it ALL.

Ahhh, there's nothing like reading a good book I'd say. And I love Greek Mythology! I read the Illiad like at least 20 times when I was a kid and we had a little makeshift library at home. Homer is the bomb.

I have read the Lightning Thief, the Sea of Monsters and am now reading the Titan's Curse. Go to Borders and get the perks of the deal guys!

Because I spent quite a bit on the books, I got a free membership and got 2 complimentary memberships as well! Hehe.

It really is truly easy to make me happy.

Have a good rest of the week!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Airiel's Graduation Day

Hello Everyone,

Last Saturday was Airiel's graduation concert for the year 2012.

All pics and video are in Aries' phone as my camcorder has issues of the day la plak.

But this was one pic I took.

Boy, my son has grown. He speaks fluent Malay and English now and dabs at Mandarin too as there are Mandarin classes as well. He has moved on to Igra' Book 2 alhamdulillah. But the problem is, he never wants to do anything at home sbb he always says 'Airiel dah learn kat school mama'.

Instead he tries to teach me alphabets and numbers on his blackboard we got from Ikea (RM79 what a bargain!) and he is so garanglah. He goes 'Look here mama!' and 'Pay attention Mama!'. Alahai anak aku ni.

You should see him scolding Aries on the weekend when its his turn to be taught. Hahaha

Ok, what a way for me to start the week. My heart is melting.

Have a good week ahead.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Bliss Boutique Hotel, Johor Bharu

Hello everyone,

Its Friday! Just wanted to share with you this new boutique hotel which I found in one of my many stays in JB for work. Frankly, I was tired of the big hotels because I have been to them all. So this was refreshing. You know what I loved about this hotel? Its so quirky and funky!

It has designer boutique rooms that each have different themes, meaning no one room is designed the same!
I got the 'Pink Fever' room.

What an interesting space for hanging your clothes 

Queen size bed 

Love the little touches 

It has a fridge, water, coffee and tea and has a bar sort or area with a stool here which you can lepak, all in your room 

Funky light designs 

It has a separate 'duduk bersila' seating area to watch TV with magazines and all 

Love the quirky wallpaper! 

It has a small bathroom, but I love the funky wallpaper again! 

Basic amenities

And its feature wall is a lovely raspberry colour! Yummy

Ok, it is not a 5 star hotel so do not expect the normal luxuries of one, it has a small bathroom so I would not recommend it for families either. For couples it is great! Their website is here.