Tag Archives: christmas



I haven’t written in a long while. Heck, I haven’t even Instagram-ed anything in a really long while, hence the stark absence of my Instant Months posts – my last being September.

2014 is about to come to an end, and to be honest, all I could think of was how bad it has been. I had a lot to deal with, from work related matters, to a flurry of funerals and hospitalisations that required my (almost) immediate attention, inevitably forcing me into a place of spreading myself thin, in efforts to meet my deadlines/catch up with friends/spend time with my family/work my church duties/make time for myself and so much more.

But I’ve grown. It’s been a tough year but I’ve grown, and I choose to carry that with me from the rough and turbulent everything else the year chucked my way.

Every new year, there are two seasons that garner big resolutions – the beginning of it, and six months into it. Yup, and I used to be (or might still be) a sucker for all that too. Come 2015, there are just three things I’d like to make happen.

1. Dive
2. Get fit.
3. Be happy.

It’s not much, but it’s really quite a lot when I think about it. You know what I mean?

This shot was taken on my recent trip to Singapore. This bunch of workers were putting up, or painting down, whichever, a fresh new Hump Ahead sign. It was a work of art, if you actually saw how they did it. Them – chalk, rulers and paint in hand, it was like watching someone work up a typography poster, large scale, freehand. Love.

And I just thought I’d immortalise their work that would very soon be weathered down by rain and shine, tyre marks and soiled footprints.

This is a reminder, that there will be hump(s) ahead, whether you are ready for them, whether you approve of them or not. All you got to do is to hit the road, enjoy the ride, and make the most out of wherever you are headed for. 2015 will be okay, if not better than 2014.

We’ll all be okay.(: So to everyone out there, Merry Christmas and have a happy, happy New Year! Whatever your resolutions are, just remember to live every moment, good or bad/happy or sad. xx

Tagged , , ,


New Year


I apologise for being so bad at keeping up with my writing, that every time something comes up – a vacation, a personal struggle, a workload explosion – my posts take a backseat. I need to try harder at keeping at it, and I will.

2014 is now. It’s crazy how time flies. Many will start off with resolutions and new lists of things to accomplish, while some will find that one thing that drives them crazy and allow it to take them further.

This year, I decided that I will have nothing to do with lists and resolutions but everything to do with remembering each day in a question, and for the next four years on. I picked out a Q&A journal over Christmas in Singapore and have started taking on the questions a day at a time. 365 questions, 5 years, 1825 answers. To be frank, I am curious as to how and where I’d be when the five years are up. I’d like to know if I’ve grown at all, if I’ve matured and how have things and people around me changed, evolved, weathered, with time. I’d like to know if I succeed at being the person I want to be, and if I have wholly and completely distant myself from my past. I’d like to know if I’m attached, or if I’m single and living in a luxe little condo. Or if I’ve been to the same restaurant the past three years, or if my victory dance has ever changed. Haha. I’m…curious, you know.

If you’re just as curious as I am, you can pick up your own Q&A a day like the one I have here and start journaling each day and then reading it back four years after when you’re done. It’ll be a like a time capsule, of written words. And then I also decided that I would like to live my life in books this year, hence my Nook ink-reader. And my yearly companion, the Moleskin planner. I am set to take on 2014, I suppose. I do hope you lovelies are too. If there’s a fitness regime you’re putting yourself through, or a family plan you’re executing, or just a part of your life you’re making a change to…keep going at it! It’s going to be a good year.(:

Happy new year all! I will leave you the questions for this week, if you’d like a taste of being part of this Q&A journey. So grab a notebook and start writing away.

Lots of love for the New Year’s,

Q&A A Day
Jan 1 What is your mission?
Jan 2 Can people change?
Jan 3 What are you reading right now?
Jan 4 The best part of today?
Jan 5 What was the last restaurant you went to?
Jan 6 Today was tough because…
Jan 7 You are lucky; how so or not so?
Jan 8 What song is stuck in your head?
Jan 9 Was today typical? Why or why not?
Jan10 Write down something that inspired you for today/
Jan 11 Today you lost…

{Read, write and schedule by Jolene Tan}

Tagged , , , , , ,



Good morning lovelies!

So it’s the end of November. I’m hoping for a better month ahead. I believe we could all use that.

…December rings in with Christmas carols, lots of shopping and all of that yuletide hype. Have you shopped for the holidays yet? I haven’t. I usually have things sorted by this time of the year but I’m thinking I’d let loose for once, forget the gift-shopping bit and just have a good dinner with my family, maybe even cook one.

If you have ticked off everyone on your gift list, kudos and great job! But if you haven’t, don’t stress just yet. There are plenty of things you can do that will make up for, or make an even greater gift, I’d say. Read: cooking and entertaining. And while at it, you can even Instagram your preparation, finished meal, table settings and guests! Also, maybe it’s a good year to start writing those Christmas cards and posting them to your favourite people scattered around town, or the globe alike.

I was working on some initial designs for my design blog yesterday and loved the way the whole thing turned out. It’s a bit too early to reveal anything at the moment but I hope when I’ve compiled just enough designs to make more than a couple of posts, I will let you guys in on it, so as to not disappoint you, or myself should the project not kick of ever (this happened many times before). I am still however, hunting for an authentic letterpress printer in Kuala Lumpur. Yes, hunting is the exact word I will use over and over again because it is that crazy just looking for one. Locally, people are not receptive to letterpress, for its price and perhaps because they don’t appreciate such an extent of customisation, that also goes back to the costs. But I personally love it; love the effect, love the textures and especially love it when the ink doesn’t sit entirely perfect. It’s like perfection in the imperfection.(: Haha!

I’m off to meet some friends for breakfast, and then lunch. So please enjoy these gems for the weekend and enjoy your day to its fullest!

p.s.: The sun is out and my flowers are finally singing, “Glory hallelujah!” It’s been pouring and they’ve been drowning in an excess of rainwater. Hooray!

Been listening to lots of Jason Reeves’ pieces, like this and this.

Did I read smoked salmon bagels? Yums.:9
p.s.: Oh and the photography in this blog? LOVE.

Stories that make your subway ride feel less horrid.

I love this publication, and am thinking of subscribing to it. *rubs chin*

If you get the Malaysian slang with the whole -lah, -leh and more, read all of this.
p.s.: I found myself laughing to myself at countless posts.

Another food blog to note with superb photography.
p.s.: If you have more food blogs with great photography to share, please let me know!

{garden bloom by Jolene Tan}

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,


So, I opened a Facebook account for my still currently non-existent web shop, and also a separate Gmail account to go with it. Baby steps!

I have been hunting online and on my travels, making purchases in teeny tiny quantities to add to the shop’s list of items sold. I haven’t gotten to working out the pricing (the large, scary part), and most definitely haven’t gotten to photographing them but I’d like to do so soon, perhaps after my big NYC trip.

I’m gearing up and hopeful to get the web shop up and in time for Christmas. I know with such a niche of a market I am looking at, I might not get the response I am hoping for at first but well, it’s got to start somewhere. And I will keep on keeping at it until perhaps, I’m too broke to fund my shop or something. Boohoo.

But well, all will be good.(: Now, a muffin for dinner and back to my work, and web shop planning.

Cheers to a good evening!

Tagged , , , ,


48 shotsPutting together this patch of 48 shots, I am beyond blessed to have had so many good times with some of the best-est people in my life. While I am definitely looking forward to a million more adventures, big or small, I am thrilled with every bit of the world I’ve traveled to, seen and loved.

There’s more to 2012 that’s undocumented within these 48 shots- laughter, fun, drinks, game nights, breakfasts, road trips to the clouds and oh so much more!(: I keep telling myself that I need to take more pictures! And so I shall- starting by adding it to my resolution list.

I hope every one of you had an amazing year. Let’s raise our glasses and toast to a brand new, even brighter and better 2013!

p.s: I got me my Moleskin planner for the new year. Have you got yours?(: Click to shop away!

A year in 48 shots. A compilation of (in no particular order): 2011/12 New Year’s countdown in Singapore/Biking trip to Chiang Mai with dad’s biker bunch/UDMO weekend convoy to Port Dickson/Exploring Tokyo/Publika day-out with Mr. Bentley/Dad’s 60th birthday-do/The awesome Melbourne vacation/Dessert dates at Alexis/Family trip to the wintry Hokkaido/Girls-only Langkawi trip/Legoland weekend/Hong Kong whirlwind trip/Stuffed toys and such/Singapore brunch with the cousin/The supposed Christmas project.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

christmas (ideas) came early

In efforts to come out of the horrible state of uninspired-ness I’m in, I decided I was going to work on something for Christmas. This year, I will be giving away a little stationery set containing eight self-designed greeting cards, a pen to write those season greetings and a little cookie pack to nibble away while you’re at it. Sounds good?

I’m a total freak and I’m going to say this, please don’t steal my idea.): But if you’d love to support me, please do check this space come November. That’s when I’ll start rolling out the goodies!

I’m hoping that I will be able to start a little something by doing what I love. And along the way, to actually make a difference with the people around me. Maybe this Christmas will be someone’s first time receiving a hand-written card designed by yours truly. I’m hoping, and wishing for that sort of thing, you know. It’s the whole idea of Christmas anyway.(:

I haven’t been counting down to Melbourne as expected, sadly.): But I’m still as excited and thrilled by the idea that it’s just less than a week away! I will be packing this weekend and hopefully finding the time to update this space too. Sorry for neglecting my posts but work has been real hectic since I’m clearing up to go on my long hols! So please bear with a little empty updates, or no updates at all, but it will get better soon I promise.

In the meantime, please enjoy these mighty inspiring sites that have kept me sane throughout the weeks.(:

An initialled coin, a wishbone, and a dainty anchor for you.

Shoes, shoes, shoes I’d die for!

I’m itching for some letterpress goodness.(:

Finally, a stop for my love for papeterie.

Tagged , , , , ,