Monday, August 27, 2007

typical apartment layout

layout #1

this layout is very common for a 3 room apartment and very similar to the one i am staying in.

layout #2

this is space planning for the above layout except this one doesn't have a balcony. balcony is very important for apartment living. that is where you hang your clothes to dry. of course there is a yard or wash area, but usually yard is converted into wet kitchen, the place you do the real cooking, the kitchen inside is for food preparation, also known as dry kitchen. compared with layout #1, this wash area is bigger, replacing the balcony. if i saty in layout #2, i seriously dunno where to hang my clothes to dry. when i cook, smoke from cooking will stick to the clothes hanging to dry at the yard. i may sound like an aunty but when you really stay in such aparment, you will understand how sticky the situation is.

another thing i dont like about this layout is Room 3 is in between two toilets. if water proofing is not done properly during construction time, the room will be damp all the time. it can be converted into a study or storeroom if not many people living under the same roof.

layout #3

this is a second common apartment layout. note the bathrooms are next to one another. the bathrooms are smaller though, which i think you should avoid. actually this design can be maximized futher is the toilets are in-line with room 3.

layout #3 has no balcony again!

layout #4

so far is the best aparment layout, the spacing is just right and the room arrangement is just right. i wonder what is the built-up area. if it is 850 sqft, it tends to be a bit smaller. if it is 1000 sqft, then this apartment layout is just perfect.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

property search

after the wedding and all, we have many friends come asking how to search for the right property. we are all getting to the late twenties where renting is not a good option anymore. while renting is almost responsibily-free but now that we have climbed higher in the income group, coming back to the comfort of own home is the right thing to do. while many has planned extensively how to save and penny-pinch their way into owning a landed property, some decided to settle for less, apartments!

me and my hb is now living in a low-rise 850 sqft walk-up apartment. what does this mean? how to differentiate them?

high rise or low rise?

high rise is usally serviced with lift. it can be 10, 15 or 20 storeys high. comes with basement or without. the basement, ground and first floors are usually carparks. for medium cost, there are usually 16 units to a floor. the lesser the better. some high-end or niche has 4 unit to a floor, with bigger built-up of course, 2000 to 3000 sqft. but this time, i would like to focus on more affordable ones.

some may favour lift, as it offers easier access. and for some reason, prefer to stay higher. maybe on the 8th floor and above? for the wind and less noise i supposed? some even for the night view. some apartments with view over-looking the klcc tower has skyrocketed over these past few years. high rise are very available at 'hot' locations. for example, near the lrt station. i can give two examples, one is kelana jaya and another bukit jalil. the price increases with the floor levels.

low-rise apartment are five storeys walk up units. used to be called flats, low-rise used to be cheaper. now developer started building 4 units to a stair. meaning one staricase servicing 4 units at each floor. gaining popularity now due to more privacy and lower density. you do the math, one block of 20 storeys with lift has 16 units each floor vs one block of 20 units each for 5 storeys. the price decrese as u get higher, totally opposite of high-rise. why? because you have to climb higher to get home.

apartment living vs landed property

for apartments, both low-rise or high rise, one unit come with one carpark so if you have a second car, you either rent a second carpark or park your car on the roadside. being malaysian, most people car by the roadside. making it a sore-eye. prior to purchase, it is advised to visit at night. this is when most people are back from work.

landed property! aha. who doesn't dream of owning one? there are many pros and cons actually. it has been overated to own a landed property. i personally has no objection to landed property, or have any bias opinion against them. but good landed properties are so expensive now. and not to mention, far far away from town. all the near ones are taken. either you pay higher in the second hand market or you commute one hour to work from putra heights or kota kemuning, for example. but owning a landed property give so much more space. car porch for example, your second highest investment/asset are all inside your house. be careful though, terrace houses now come with shorter car porch. meaning back to the second car park outside scenario again.

many aparment owners will graduate to landed homes one day. when you start having children, the space factor is very very important. some delayed buying property now, because they are looking for the right landed one. or saving more to buy a landed one.

second hand homes vs new development
second hand homes meaning it has been stayed/owned by someone else. newly developed meaning you buy from developer. second hand ones, you get to choose, the location, the house layout, the renovations doned, the price. and the list goes one. you see the product you purchased.

while newly developed ones, offers you free legal fees, you choose based on the catalogue or show unit that developer set up. it's new and no one stays in it before. it may be in a newly developed well planned new township. the access roads are wide the rows and rows or houses are well organised. one section has 100-200 units, with lanscape all around.

now most high rise come fully furnished. they throw in some furniture and electricals and you get zero moving cost. the real scenario is, they lump everything into the home loan, so you dont need to fork out 10-20k buying all these.

actually, applying the same method, choose an apartment or house which are already semi furnished. you get to move almsot immediately. if the prvious owner is moving on to landed, the furnitures in their apartment might not be suitbale anymore. some owner will not bother removing lights and fans installed when they first moved in. be aware that new houses do not have all these installed. so some excel spreadsheet calculationg before paying that 500-1000 booking fees. road shows and show units are very very tempting.


i might not be the person with the best advise but i can proudly say, i have been there and done it. so it makes me slightly more experienced. plus, i am a structural enginner. i see homes layouts everyday at work. i know what is workable what is not. you have no idea how some people can come up with such lousy layout design sometimes. space management is very very important when you are only buying small properties.

for more info, try visiting there are so much choices here. for prising, try calling some adjustor offices. they are happy to tell you what is the fair price etc.

happy shopping!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

bacherlorette party for sl

yesterday, we organised a bacherolette party for sl who will is getting married middle of next month. firstly, we had dinner at santuary, the curve. the retaurant serve thai food. since it friday and traffic jam day, on average everyone arrived an hour late.

we had thai food for dinner. we ordered pineapple fried rice, pandan chicken, sesame chicken, tom yam, green curry etc. the dinner would have been nice but we started late and everyone was starving. so we dont really get to savour the food, we just whack eveything within half an hour.

we chat for a while, talking about marriages and weddings. discussing about how married life is, in 5 years and in 10 years to come. then after dinner, we headed to laundry for drinks. we had magaritas and another cocktail which i didnt remember the name. the cocktail is nice. if i go there again, i dont mind orderingt he same thing. then we treat sl to a flaming lamborghini. will post the photo here if sh send them to me. cos i forgot my camera, again! should put it in my bag to wherever i go from now on.

i have a message to my dear friend sl.

congrats and welcome to the club, *muaks*

let me do a list here.
1. cl and sin
2. me and bill
3. sl and yeo

hmmmph. i wonder who will be next.

Friday, August 24, 2007

true love

this came to me in a fwd mail. a very touching story.

This is what True Love is all about:

It was a busy morning, approximately 8:30 a.m., when an elderly
gentleman in his 80's, arrived to have stitches removed from his
thumb. He stated that he was in a hurry as he had an appointment
at 9:00 am.

I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would
be over an hour before someone would to able to see him. I saw
him look at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with
another patient, I would evaluate his wound.

On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors,
got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his

While taking care of his wound, we began to engage in
conversation. I asked him if he had another doctor's appointment
this morning, as he was in such a hurry. The gentleman told me
no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast
with his wife.

I then inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been
there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer' s
Disease .

As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late.
He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not
recognized him in five years now.

I was surprised, and asked him, "And you still go every morning,
even though she doesn't know who you are? "

He smiled as he patted my hand and said, " She doesn't know me,
but I still know who she is." I had to hold back tears as he
left, I had goose bumps on my arm, and thought, "That is the kind
of love I want in my life."

True love is neither physical, nor romantic. True love is an
acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

joke of the day

i have been playing with blogger setting for past few days. today i was surfing like normal. out of boredom i googled my name and saw some guy with the name guan-tai. in his myspace he wrote this:

"you can pick your friends and you can pick your nose but you cannot pick your friends' nose. you let them do it themselves. "

haha. i laughed aloud in the office. now everyone know i was not working! ish

Monday, August 20, 2007

change of url

i have decided to change my recipe blog to 'malaysian food recipe' instead of 'express home cook', thus change in url to instead of

Thursday, August 16, 2007

check your poo poo today

ok. i admit! i am bored.

passive income

what is it about? people might ask.

working in KL is similar with pushing a thread uphill. it's a long term battle. so many has tried and is still trying to find passive income.

a few categories
there are a few catergories actually. some jump into multi-level-marketing or direct selling. the products range from health food to home appliances to aromatheraphy lamps. people joined into believing that customers will continue buying the aromatheraphy thing their entire life and make you the seller, a millionaire and promises of an early retirement.

some are more realistic and serious, like insurances and unit trust. both uses the same method as direct selling. this is how they run their business, persuasion and word of mouth. everyone needs insurance, is their motto. if you already have life insurance, you should consider medical insurance! if you are planning to have a child, you should consider ladies insurance, for the prenancy complications unforseen and uncovered with life insurance. when your child is born, you will need children insurance and maybe teamed up with education fund.

the insurance industry is so saturated. while the policies per person is not as high as larger cities like tokyo. but there is no denial, at this time, people are more aware of the impoortance/ no unimportance of insurance. if i have to speculate, i think out of ten person, 3 are insurance agents, either active or not.

the latest trend now is insurance with some investment funds paired up. the buyer can take back some money or if times are good, can fund their insurance policies with the 'units' they invested. the manager of the funds, are of course the insurance company.

this leads to another mushrooming direct selling, mutual fund! the infiltration is fast. before long, all insurance agents have converted mutual fund agents. what they want it your money to be invested into the numerous funds their company have created. some examples are far-east funds, developing countries fund, china funds la, india funds and many more. the theme play is a marketing strategy. after buying one, there is another excuse to buy another one. why? because people will not say no to opportunity.

the real scenario
through my four years of working, i have been introduced to countless of passive income mathods. some simply want to 'share' their success stories so you will join them and be a sub-line and help generate their own income while some just want you to buy their products.

it's not hard to understand why. our monthly wage just not enough! but how much is enough? bosses can be earning 10-20k a month but i still hear them say money not enough. if his junior staff can survive with a 2k salary, y not them? because they have a bigger morgage/car loan?

friends my age have moved on to manegerial posts with higher pay and more responsibilities. and not to mention stress. maybe i refuse to grow, i have learned that the older i get, the more i have to earn. for what reasons, i simply dont know!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

a new blog

i think i m getting addicted to blogging. i have started a new blog tittle 'express home cook food'.

maybe i am just plain naive starting a recipe blog where i know in the internet there are millions and millions of recipe websites. but it's blog! it's free and i can write whatever i fancy! haha.

the recipes are simple, usually took 30 minutes or less to prepare. those who are interested, especially my fellow girl friends can click here.

for those who have recipes they would like to share can email me at all dish in my recipe collection is simple and hassle free. and not forgetting tried and tested.

Monday, August 13, 2007

yahoo photos closing

on this gloomy monday morning i received a mail from yahoo stating that yahoo photos is closing. but i have the option to move all my photos to flickr.

personally i dont like flickr. i have uploaded quite a few albums inside and they have upgraded me to pro, for three months only. after that i might have to pay for the storage space.

i've always like online album. they serve as a backup to my photos. and at the same time i get to share with friends easily. just tell them to click on the link at at my blog.

right now, i still have flickr, webshots and picasa. in my opinion, too many accounts already. i hope i wont have to spread the photos all over the place just because they limit the storage space!!!!!

Married life

"how is married life?"

i have heard this numerous times after the wedding. maybe it's out of curioustiy. usually i answer with just simple word. "ok lor"

how should i put it leh. let's start with some daily/weekly routines. i wake up at 6.30 am for work. breakfast is simple milo and bread. if i am in the mood i will fry some egg and bacon. if not then it's be peanut butter or kaya with bread. hb will only wake at 7.30 because his workplace is a stone's throw away. mine is 45 minutes drive.

after work at about 6.00 or 6.30 i leave the office and go home to prepare dinner. i dont cook everyday but i try to. the last thing after a hard day at work is to think what to have for dinner and where to have. so the best option is to make some simple dinner at home. i cook chinese dishes mainly. simple and fast dishes. if i m really lazy i toss some pasta into boiling water, open a can of sauce, and that's dinner. LOL

on the weekend, time is spent mostly on the home. on saturday i spend the morning cleaning the house. and mopping the floor. on weekdays i dont sweep and mop. luckily there's only two of us in the house. minimal cleaning is required. hb has to work on saturday. sometimes i go groceries shopping, either alone or with a friend. and maybe the rest of the day while waitting for him t come back i m either glued to the TV or bed.

on sundays, we have lunches and dinners with friends. we have received so many invitations. and glad to know that we still have social life post wedding. haha. meals with freinds are nice. maybe 4 or 6 pax. too many people tend to be too noisy and not much quality conversations can take place. on every other weekend, we will have dinner with our own parents and siblings.

there! that's how married life is. the next question is the hard one........

"are u two planning for a baby...?"

which i will not comment.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

recap from hk trip

i came home to sban yesterday. my mum's bday on the 8th of august. came back to have dinner with the whole family.

since i just got my new laptop from de_ll, which they delayed for 45days. i decided to copy some files from the desktop at home. most of them are photos actually.

i came ot see these hk photos taken last may when i went with sheryl, sook mei, poh poh, sau leng and yeo yeo and loose.

this is taken in LCCT. when me and sheryl first went, it was both our first time. the place is like a warehouse with some plastic chairs. i dunno how the airport looks like now cos i hvnt been there since. now najib announced that they will build another better LCCT. what a waste. they shouldn't have divert the AA planes at the first place. imagine how much business KLIA is losing because all the passengers are at LCCT instead.

this is when they announced we can board our flight. everyone is rushing out the door and into the runway. we have to walk a bit and board the plane by climbing the stairs. hahaha

this is when we reach hong kong jetty from macau, because airasia lands in macau, we have to take ferry to kowloon because we booked the hotel there. hotel in hong kong island is too out of budget for us.

lobby of the standford hotel in soy street. dont ask me why the name. very near to ladies street.

we walked around and realised hong kong is just like how it's shown on tv. neon lights all over the place.

this place is where the jumbo boat is. forgot the name. according to the tour guide, this is where the hong kong community started. they came from china started as fishermen.

i see this building on tv all the time too. built when hong kong is returned to china. shaped like tortoise. in chinese they say 'wui guai', meaning 'going home' symbolising the hong kong is going back to china.

typical breakfast, yau char guai pak chok (white poridge). really different from malaysian one wor.

this is causeway bay. the places where famous hong kong or rich people stay.

all these high end condos, even if i work 24 hours a day, i can't afford. facing the sea. good feng shui.

this office building is in almost every tvb series. seems like everyone work here.

this is the queue to the tram at central. going up to the peak. people keep saying we cant miss the peak if we ever go to hk.

well, it's worth the two hours wait. the view is simply terific.

then we go to another famous movie scene, lan kwai fong. took photo in front of the road sign. just to remember that i have been here!! LOL

in front of the peak tram station with loosey.

the police station in every hong kong movie. haha.

i dunno why the word soho is so popular in hk. the place is called soho, the shop is called soho.

busy street in hong kong. with the ever popular red taxi.

sloping street in hong kong. most of the buildings were constructed on the slope. the island itself is hilly and as u go further in, the higher u get. the highest location, of course, it the PEAK itself.

the hsbc buidling. the famous lion, steed, another lion i forgot the name.

it was sunday and all the indon/philipine maids took the day off to picnic/camp here. they meet up with friends and chat. some do each other's hair and nails.

the famous ferry that bring passengers to and from hk island to kowloon.

an old school ferry! this is strictly for tourists only.

chung king mansion. a place where they make the movie chung king espress starred faye wong and tony leong.

front view of chung king manshion.

bbq pigeon. sold on the street.

after a few days in hk, we hopped back to macau. macau is fast developing too. hong kong is over developed. so people turn to other places like macau, lantau island and shenzhen.

the kuan yin statue in macau. dont miss it.

i m facinated with this building, as a structural enginner, half of the building is hanging as cantilever. dunno how they did it.

as a conslusion to this entry, here we are in front of the ever famous gate.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

the seed of love

today i would like to introduce a new blog by my friend and his girlfriend, who are both new to the blogging scene. they knew each other online and have been dating since. not all people are fakes when they get online. bravo to both of them.

for the rest of the story, please visit their site by clicking here or find them in my list.

such lovely couple. wish you two all the best

to blog or not to blog

those nice daily visitors will be shocked when asked for login and password these two days.

i was in a dillema whether to blog or not to blog. hb mention and strongly disapporve because he worries i expose too much information. i convinced him that i only tell close friends about this blog.

however, words get around and his friends get to know my blog. from positive side of view, it's a good way to keep in touch with people. people who read but have not spoken to me immediately found a topic to talk/ ask when they see me.

i do hope my previous entries are not offensive or over-exposing myself and of course, the person i care most, my hb!

now, i have decided to continue blogging and thank to those friends who still visit everyday! thank you so much for you support

(macam super star pulak!!!)

Thursday, August 2, 2007

lazy entry

out of boredom i stumbled across some interesting stuff in they have a list called blogs of note. and if you are a fellow blogger, you might notice it changes everyday.

there are so many interesting blogs out there. mostly are personal thoughts, some use it to expand their business. some use it for good cause. i, personally is helping sook mei with hers.

there is one i would like to link to. tittled

if you are felling a bit wushy and love sick, can always go and post a message there and send the link to the target person.

another i stumbled upon is itsknotwood. who in this world would imagine, people have this kind of interest. interested in wood i understand, interested in something that looks like wood but not wood. i dont understand.

come to my part. when i started this blog. i wanted to share some photos with friends. it started when i move into our new apartment in puchong and then into the wedding.

now that both are over and we are pretty settled down, i will update less and less. maybe when i come across something weird or worth talking about, i will put in an entry or two.

the next major thing i am looking forward to will be the family trip to hanoi in november.