Hello, there! I know it’s already the third of January and everyone on the internet has already finished their year-enders. However, the last few days of 2017 meant gatherings to attend, family and friends to see, and even a bit of travel.

(You would have known if you were following me on Instagram. 😉 But come to think of it, not everything’s there either. Gosh, been so lazy to post everything these days. As you get older, you do find that some things and experiences are best kept to yourself. But that’s for another post.)

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Here are a few photos from just some of the events (most of them related to Alvin’s work and Wilkommen in Berlin) in December. We also went to Amsterdam during Christmas weekend visit my mom and her boyfriend. I don’t know how we were able to squeeze everything in! So, there just wasn’t enough time for me to sit down and type something worth anyone’s time the past few weeks. But now that I’ve finally gotten a breather, I would like to tell you something.

It’s been quite the ride since I rebranded this small space online a couple of years back. You may be someone who’s been reading my musings since then or you may be new. Either way, I’d like to thank you for being here. This space won’t survive without its readers and every view, click, or comment makes sure it stays live. I hope you’re all enjoying the things you read about here or at the very least, find something helpful.

2017

It felt like the past year was a blur. I wasn’t posting much here. I stopped filming for my small Youtube channel because I just didn’t have enough time. There was also a point when I went through a beauty product fatigue! Nothing was making me excited. Crazy, right?

I took a less active role on The Binge, and I was even a little lazy posting on other social media channels despite my work revolving around them. Our move really threw me off my writing/work routine.

I have been doing my journalism, in case you’re wondering. I even found myself making video reports again! Hooray!

After learning a bit of German (enough to order food and help me get around, at least) on my own, meeting friends in Berlin (some old, some new), going through the motions of settling down here (it’s a bit more challenging than one might think – Southeast Asia is easier, believe me) and really getting to know the city, I can now say that Berlin is really starting to feel like home. The same way Kuala Lumpur did for the two years and few months we lived there.

That really is the funny thing about life as a diplomat and as a trailing spouse. It’s a constant cycle of packing up, then trying your best to settle down as quickly as possible. Just as you’re feeling comfortable in your new space, you’ll be leaving soon enough. We still have almost three years here so I’m hoping that’s enough time to build something significant while we’re here. What it is, I don’t know yet. But as you know, I really do have a hard time sitting down and not having a full plate.

2018

And with that said, I want to share with you some things that I’m implementing this year. Twenty seventeen went by too fast and I was honestly distracted by so many things that came with settling down. Also, with every bit of travelling that my husband and I could squeeze when there’s a long weekend or when there are airfare sales. His impeccable work ethic still amazes me four years into this marriage.

In 2017, I felt like I ‘adulted’ way too much that I seriously feel older than 22 on the inside. Just kidding. I’m 28. But I do feel like I’m in my mid-30s for some reason. It is, in a way, good. Getting older does come with experience and learning to let go of things that are weighing you down.

So, I declare this year to be the year of me continuing to apply what I’ve learned not just in 2017 but all through my life. As one of my favourite Daft Punk tracks would say: Harder, better, faster, stronger. But let me add one more thing to that – smarter. No more looking back and spiralling down bad and lazy habits. Also, towards bad and/or negative people.

This is the year, I will be getting stuff for my personal and professional life done. Even the ones I’ve put off. I’ll cut off distractions and negativity and focus on getting more stuff on my list done.

Of course, without sacrificing our only vice – seeing new places. 😉 

Coming right up

The next posts would hopefully be shorter to make time for more content. I will be writing more posts that are personal musings. As stats would show, you guys seem to prefer that and that really makes my heart swell.

I would love to share more about what I think – candid while keeping it classy. And, I promise to keep at it with being as authentic as anyone can be online. It’s hard to be 100% authentic when I’m not in front of you and you can’t touch me. Also, that would be weird if you did. I have personal space issues.

You won’t see perfect photos of a perfect life here and on my social media. I’ll try to keep them pretty, though. My mother did get me a more professional camera over the holidays and I need to give her gift justice. But – I’ll let you know what goes on behind the scenes as well. Like that time I enjoyed a glitter bath bomb but then came the responsibility of cleaning up after it. No life is perfect – even that of a diplomat’s wife. Seriously!

I’ll keep sharing my diverse interests with you. That’s just who I am. We’re human with multi-faceted personalities and I’m one of those who can’t seem to just fit in one box. I guess this is why I just can’t seem to treat myself or this space as an online brand and rake in success and money. (Cue: Evil laugh with Black Mirror Opening Theme in the background) I’ve been advised so many times to do so. But – I just can’t seem to get into it and do it right. I blame the brainwashing they did to us in journalism school.

The return of beauty is also in the pipeline. My beauty product fatigue is wearing off and I’m starting to get some interest boiling in me again. Is it because of Douglas having regular sales? The opening of Sephora (finally!) in Berlin? My skincare obsession as I near the big 3-0? Or my recent decision to change to Zoeva brushes?

I still haven’t given up on getting through my travel posts backlog so rest assured, you’ll be seeing some throwbacks and even more recent trips popping up here.

I’m so excited to share another year with you!

More later.

Love,

Carol