Friendship #InHisLoveMail

We had something in common, it was a second job for the both of us after University. After having moved from various media agencies, this was our first foray into the client’s business, doing marketing in a consumer goods MNC.

We were wide eye and enthusiastic, and I first met K about 6 months into the job. I was in Corporate Marketing, while she was in Trade Marketing. What bonded us together was that we were both in the less glamorous marketing jobs in the company, since Brand Marketing were highly coverted roles. Besides, she was seated diagonally across to where I was seated, so naturally she became my lunch partner.

I initially thought she was too prissy at times, but we clicked nonetheless. We saw each other through various changes in that company, after a year, I joined her in the trade marketing team, and we eventually move to Brand Marketing with separate portfolios.

I left the company to do brand marketing for a beauty company, while K stayed another 2 years in the company. Despite not being colleagues anymore, we met each other for dinner then drinks weekly, as it always seem that we had so much to chat about.

She was a ’sister’ at my wedding and when she got married, I was also her ‘sister’ despite already married.

Our weekly meetings slowly fizzled out over time. It became once a month, then once a quarter, then barely twice a year. In fact the last 2 years, I met up with her twice. It has been tough to find some time on weekday nights to wrangle myself away from my responsibilities at home.

So when I embarked on #InHisLoveMAIL project this year, I thought that she should be one of my personal friends, who will be the recipient of my first snail mail package.

 

Why Snail Mail?

Simply because I think it is one of the most meaningful ways to show love and care to a friend. It is a very good excuse for me to pull together my love for crafting, through sewing and paper-craft. Then personalise these items, together with a hand-written letter in a cute little package.

Most people love receiving letters and cards though mail. I do! I used to love receiving snail mail from my pen-pal in my teenage years, and really looked forward to receiving mail from my sister when I was studying in Australia.

It may be an old-fashioned way of communicating in this ‘technological age’, but there is so much love that is bundled up into an envelope for the recipient, even if it may be just a simple card or just a few sheets of hand-written letters.

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How does #InHisLoveMAIL ties in with #InHisLoveFund?

To date, about $350.00 have been raised for the fund. This $350.00 will be converted to 7 sets of $50 Supermarket vouchers that will be placed in each #InHisLoveMAIL mail package. The package will consist of hand-made items, some stationery items and a personalised letter.

This snail mail package was personalised for my friend K, who loves bunnies, giraffes and is fond of cute concepts and sweet flower motifs.

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My good friend Pauline, who is another avid crafter, will be working with me to personalise 7 sets of #InHisLoveMAIL packages this year. So the items in each package will vary according to our inspiration for that month. In other words, our ‘crafting and encouragement services’ :P are available for any readers who want to encourage or bring joy to a friend through a #InHisLoveMAIL package.

We will create the items, write the letter, throw in a $50 Supermarket voucher with each package, and then mail the package directly to the recipient fully at our cost.

There are 7 sets available, 1 will be prepared for each month.

So do comment on this post and share with me, why you hope to send a #InHisLoveMAIL package to your friend, and I will do a random pick. This could be a friend whom you haven’t met for some time, or she may be going through some challenges in her life, and will need some encouragement. You can choose to remain anonymous if you wish.

Your friend’s name do not need to be shared in the blog comment, as confidential information will only be needed if you are selected. If you are selected, do provide more details about your friend and her design preferences, as the #InHisLoveMAIL package will be personalised according to the concepts that she will like.

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If we do not get any ‘nominees’, Pauline and I already have quite a few people in mind whom we want to send these packages to :)

So do join us, and participate in nominating a friend and let us work together to spread some love, hope and encouragement through #InHisLoveMail this year!

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5 Craft Design Trends for 2015

Craft5in2014

These Craft Design Trends were really popular in 2014, but I think its really time to retire these design ideas; mustaches (slightly over-used), mason jars, monograms, chevron prints, nautical style, chalkboard everything and the pineapples (huat ah!).

And embrace these 5 Craft Design Trends for 2015;

1. Colours for 2015 

Neon is officially out, and earthly colors have taken the place of these bright hues.

  • Pantone Shade for 2015; Marsala

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  • Gold Accents on almost everything

Gold accents

  • Black and White are still Classics

Black n white

  • Pastles like mint green and peachy pink 

Mint greensource

2. Print Trends for 2015

  • Drop the Pineapples, and move on to Watermelons and Donuts are still cool 

Watermelonsource

  • Wildlife Inspired Design with Animals, Insects and Birds. I am seeing Flamingoes quite a bit recently. 

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  • Geometric Prints, like triangles and hexagons 

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  • Polka Dots, Arrows

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  • Florals and Feathers

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  • Maps are still in 

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3. Handwriting 

In line with the personalizing trend. There will be more ‘handwritten’ fonts that will be used in Home or Wall Decor.

Personalising cards, pictures with your own handwriting have never really gone out of style. If you really need some help with creating prettier handwriting, try picking up Calligraphy.

Handwritingsource

4. Sewing Craft

Knitting and embroidery are no more considered as old-fashioned craft activities. Knitting and embroidery creations are featured in women’s fashion, home decor and Amigurumi will still retain its popularity amongst knitting crafters in 2015.

But I am sure that there will be more creative ideas sprouting out in Pinterest this year with Knitting and Embroidery.

Knitsource source source

5. Paper

  • Paper Flowers are in trend this year, a good site with ideas to make your own blooms  at allfreepapercrafts.com.
Flowers
  • Something from your teenage years is coming back and will get rather popular in 2015; Planners!
Planners
 

It’s like scrapbooking in a book format, except a planner helps you be more organized on paper. 2015 Planners will have more personalization with fancy stickers, stamps, drawings and washi tape. Even if you are not a crafter, having a planner and ‘prettifying’ it, is definitely do-able!

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This round up of Craft Design Trends in 2015 will definitely be providing a good starting point for ideas in my crafting creations this year.

So which craft trends do you like the most, and will look at incorporating into your crafting or DIY projects for this year?

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The Primary 2 Form Teacher

Have you had a teacher in your primary / secondary schooling years that fit into this profile:

Unmarried woman in her 40s, with a perpetual scowl on her face.

I still can recall a teacher known as Ms Tay, that I encountered in Primary 5, who didn’t rank too highly in her personable attributes. Being 11 then, I think it was easier to manage a teacher whom I don’t feel really compelled to give gifts to when Teachers’ Day came around that year.

This reminds me of a retro card game I used to play in Primary School;

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So how do I manage when it is my barely 8 year old that is experiencing a form teacher of this profile in Primary 2 this year?

This experience with K’s new form teacher is like an understatement to experiencing a fast track education in Singapore. Not just in academics, but also a fast track lessons in learning EQ.

I suspected that this teacher is quite ‘different’ during the 2nd week of a teacher-parent briefing, when she insisted that she will not give her mobile number to the parents but will prefer to communicate through email. Many of K’s classmates parents expressed their preference that it will be a more effective form of communication with her. Besides last year, we could call or drop an sms to the previous form teacher. With reluctance, she wrote her mobile number on the white board, and highlighted that we should only call/message her when absolutely necessary.

As for how K feels about his form teacher? It can be seen through these short anecdotes after 3 weeks of school;

“I think Ms Ong is not a happy person, I hardly ever see her smile.” :(

“You know what happened today, C (his classmate) broke her water bottle and was really upset about it, and you know what Ms Ong said. She said that she does not care! She actually said that she doesn’t care!” – with a look of disbelief on his face.

“Ms Ong is really not sharp, she ended up scolding the wrong person in class. Instead of D who was the one who started disturbing E, she punished E. I pity E, who did not deserve the punishment.”

“Ms Ong punishes the whole class, when just one person makes the mistake. The rest of us get punished even when it is not our fault” (I told him like it is in being in the Army, as that happens when someone makes a mistake in the platoon).

“Sigh…I really miss Mdm Tan (his teacher last year). Even though she is strict and firm, she is caring, but Ms Ong…(sigh again)”

 

What he needed was fast track lessons on EQ;

- To learn to be alert and watch her emotions and body language during class time.

- And be really, really attentive during her lessons so that he knows what he to do for her subjects that she teach.

So far he hasn’t experience any issues with her, but have been sharing stories about how some of his classmates, the not-so-alert ones, who have been getting it quite bad from her.

Still, I can see myself writing her this note to her;

Letterhead

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As much as I wanted to send this to her through K, I decided not to.

Having come from the ‘school of hard knocks’, I have come to realise that often in life we are not able to change the circumstances surrounding us. Until we take drastic measures to change the situation with these bad bosses or not-so-good teachers, and look to switching jobs or the schools.

Having a not-so-good teacher may not be that bad after all, when this becomes an opportunity to teach K to manage challenging situations by changing his attitude towards it, rather than always expecting things to change for him.

Nonetheless, we find ourselves praying for her nightly before we go to bed, in the hope that she can experience the love of God, so that she can be transformed to be a more loving person towards the children and others.

To be frank, I am not really that excited to meet her again for PTM in May, as she just made it more challenging for me to motivate my child in his second year of Singapore’s School system.

And if desperate measures are ever needed, this letter that I just imagined myself writing to her, might just reach her one of these days.

—–

Read here on my take of how a parent can manage the pressures of the Singapore School system, Part 2 of post here.

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