Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

The scariest thing about eating at Bangsar is finding parking! So I love all eating spaces that are within walking distance of Bangsar Village; I can park underground and perhaps do a grocery run while also getting lunch. 

We originally wanted to have a lunch date at bait after reading that their fish and chips is delicious, but that odd place only opens up from 3PM onwards. So on the fly, we decided to head up the stairs to this restaurant called Roost... 

It sounded perfect; small portion food that's healthy as my date just spent 2 hours at the gym. 

The space is so pretty and MUJI-esque! I really loved sitting right in front of the open kitchen and watching the chefs at work. I noticed there were a lot of cabbage preparation so I'll try to order the cabbage dish next time. 

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

My favourite must-order dish is the scallop and my date loved the beef tartare. He loved it so much that he went again the next day with his friends.

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

You can skip the hummus dish but the panna cotta was also quite nice. 

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

Lunch at Bangsar (Roost, Jalan Telawi)

It costs about RM100 per person which is reasonable for an adult date and most of all, I love how you leave the place feeling full but not guilty because everything is fresh and good for your body. They also have interesting beer selection you won't commonly find but I heard that it's expensive (I am the kind of person who will order a flat white or latte wherever she goes).

Highly recommended for a quiet lunch or dinner to talk and catch up!

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala (My Story)

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

When you decide to swap your professional career for a small business, winning awards is so far away in the back of your mind. 

Lately I have begun opening up on how we started the business from my perspective, and it is humbling to see the look of disbelief on everyone's face. 

On the outset, it is a husband and wife business, dedicated to helping Malaysians find jobs in IT... 

But in the beginning...

Pre-baby we were a young KL couple living in a tiny apartment in the chic part of town; the house didn't need any cleaning because we never cooked and we even sent our clothes to the laundry shop so we didn't have to worry about it. 

On weekends we had high tea, KFC and pizza and sometimes only ate one meal a day because we were too lazy, sleepy and unmotivated to go out. We were absolutely not "entrepreneur" Type A people.

Then we moved into an empty new house (with no time for renovation!), I was heavily pregnant with our first baby and somehow we thought that would be a great time to start a business - just because I had 3 months of maternity leave from my marketing job. How hard could it be to figure out how to raise a newborn baby while running a business and also figuring out how to keep a household together? 

Right... we were idiots. 

But sometimes you need to be a little crazy to make a little crazy dream work. 

And so both the company and the baby is over 4.5 years old now and we also have another 2 years old (Yes. While working from home, being a part-house wife, part-business owner, I remember clearly being adamant that I wanted to get pregnant again FAST). 

I remember the days when I hardly got any sleep and days when I got a lot of sleep. 

I remember days of "closing the business" to go on holiday trips every month and every year overseas like it was no big deal (because I didn't know if you have a new business you should not take a day off) 

I remember hard days, frustrating days, testing days. But in all the days, somehow we were all super happy and the house was filled with a lot of love. Things just somehow always just turned out fine.

I now know that it is a stupid decision to have a baby and a new business and a new house all at the same time; I do not recommend anyone to follow in our footsteps. 

We are still living in a house that has not been renovated yet, and the business still has a long way to go before it can stand on its own legs. And the babies probably have another 15 years to go before they are independent adults who contribute to society. 

Steve Jobs says you can only connect the dots when you look back, so I hope that when we are truly free from the rat race, my crazy lifestyle will become a new blueprint, a new philosophy on how we (women especially) can have it all - the babies, the husband, the home, the holiday, the nails, hair and beauty and having the ability to afford it all by ourselves. 

Until then, winning an award or two in recognition of how far we've come is amazing and humbling at the same time. That we can stand shoulder to shoulder with public listed companies and giants in the HR industry is breathtaking. 

JP Associates has won GOLD for Best New Recruitment Agency, GOLD for Recruiter of the Year and SILVER for Best Specialist Recruitment Firm. 

We have grown x10 since we opened our first official office in 2018 and I am so proud of the team who believed in us and our unorthodox methods of getting the job done. 

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

JP Associates at the Asia Recruitment Awards 2020 Winner Gala

Here's to more recognition and awards as we run as hard as we can to meet the future! 

Monday, October 5, 2020

How to renew maid visa in Malaysia

Finding good help is hard! With two babies in the house and a busy household/business to run on top of it, we were very lucky to come across Kawasama maid agency to get a suitable helper for our home - I was really counting my blessings that I have help when the MCO lockdown happened and we were stuck at home with so many tempting house chores to do, while also needing to keep the business running at the same time. 

So when the MCO was lifted and helper's visa was due for yearly renewal, I was more than happy to renew her for a second year. 

How to Renew Your Maid Visa 

I read that you can renew the visa on your own, but the process was too complicated for me to follow. So I just contacted my agent and requested for them to do the paperwork for me. 

Step 1 - How much it costs for maid visa renewal in Malaysia - RM1,405 


Insurance - RM100

Levy fees - RM631

Renewal fees - RM400 

6% SST - RM24

After payment is made to the agent, they will work on processing the FOMEMA form; choose the clinics closest to your house for convenience. 

Step 2 - FOMEMA check up

For more accurate blood results, take your helper to the clinic in the morning. Fasting is not required but she should not take any medicine that can affect the reading. If she is on her period, wait for 5 days before visiting the clinic. 

The checkup should take about 30 minutes if you go early. You don't have to pay for anything, just wait for the results in one week. 

Step 3 - Wait for the maid's agent 

Once the results is out, the agent will process the visa renewal. This stage will take about one week. 

Step 4 - Wait for MyEG 

Once the visa is approved, MyEG will inform you that they will be delivering the visa to your doorstep. Do note you must show the helper's passport and employer's IC to collect the new visa. 

In our case, myEG took over 2 weeks to deliver our pass as our timing was always off (this is a busy household!) so in the end we went to the myEG office to collect it. It's quite a nice office with very nice people, we had to wait much longer because the runner handling our visa was out of the office... 

How to renew maid visa in Malaysia

How to renew maid visa in Malaysia

How to renew maid visa in Malaysia

Overall it was quite painless, so I'm leaving this post here to refer to it when I have to do it again next year! 

Also, I received the new EP at the end of July; I started the process on the first of June - so expect it to take nearly 2 months for your helper's EP to be renewed. 

Monday, August 3, 2020

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review

I have been wanting to wax for months but Fear of Pain and then COVID lockdown delayed everything. Last Saturday seemed like a good day to finally get my messy bush out of the way. 

I love how beauty services these days provide Whatsapp numbers so you don't have to be on the phone for 5 minutes trying to communicate with the Appointment Lady on the other line, trying to agree on a date and spell your name correctly - texting makes everything so much easier. So all I had to do was text my usual wax shop at Strip Bangsar Village 2: +6011-52851111 

I texted them the night before; they will ask you for your preferred time and therapist and then you are good to go. No unnecessary human contact required to make a booking. My therapist was Tracy and she's a lovely Chinese girl who got the job done quick and painless (mostly).

It's also advisable to make a booking because even though it's COVID season, most of the wax rooms were full when I was there. 

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review

Very pretty, very nice. No mention of hairy vaginas anywhere. 

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review
The waxing took over 15 minutes, I think I heard 6-7 songs playing on the radio until the nice therapist was finally done waxing away everything I have, which made me sad. One day my daughter will also have to go through all this pain, just to have a nice, smooth you-know-what. 

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review

This is the bed where you lie down on. The lighting is not at all romantic like this - they turn on a white fluorescent light so the therapist can ensure all hair gets taken off.

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review

This is the cupboard to store your clothes and other stuff (do remember to wear a 2 piece, instead of a dress so you don't have to get completely naked.

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review
That's the wax, you guys!!! I got the chocolate wax but I suspect all wax is the same. It's not as if you'll eat it or smell it anyway.

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review
My view while I contemplate my beauty decision. But as I type this now with a hairless hooch, I can't help but feel pretty. The trick to not having a painful waxing session is to suddenly breathe deeply while she pulls off the wax. 

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review
Before you get on the bed, you need to wipe yourself between your legs clean with this wipe which looks like a packet of condoms 

Strip Bangsar Village II - Brazillian wax review

... and then you throw away the wipe in the bin here OK? 

Also, one more thing to note:

You are literally taking off a layer of skin from your body, so no swimming 24 hours after waxing (to prevent infection). They say waxing only hurts the first time and after that, it's much easier, but I don't know because I always wait for years to get my next waxing done. Hopefully, I will take better care of myself from now on and will get my next session done in 6 weeks. 

PRICE: About RM120, I purchased the RM600 package to tell myself to come back again, please don't lead a busy life with a messy bush... 

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Learning About Customer Service from My Parents

Today we ship out the very last of our Covid-19 care packages to our VIPS - select clients, candidates and fans of JP Associates. Goodbye, care packages! May you be very useful to all your new owners!

The content is simple and rudimentary, but it's handmade and is well received because anyone can see that a lot of thought and effort was put into it.

Face mask, gloves, hand sanitiser, webcam cover and lemon mints.

It took some effort to show the team why it was important to JP to keep reaching out to our important people with non-expensive gifts.

It took even more effort to show the team how short-term effort will turn into long-term rewards as thoughtful gifting is just a simple, casual way of saying, "Hey, how are you? I'm thinking of you." It's very important for me for JP to have a soul, that we are building relationships, not just running business transactions every day.

It took the team some time to realise that while everyone is busy sending e-mails and making LinkedIn connections, the joy of finding a solid gift in the mailbox is so much more valuable than a thousand likes on an Instagram post.

I realised today that this was a trick (a value?) I learned from my parents.

When I was a little girl, I used to help my parents at their firm. We will help sort out files, format reports and also help to send out annual Chinese New Year cards during school holidays. We'd make a mini production line of 4 kids, 2 adults - someone would sign the cards, someone would chop the card with the company stamp and someone would seal and stamp the envelopes. Then my mom or uncle would drop off the cards at the post office to be mailed out. Maybe that's why to this day, I still believe in sending gifts by mail.

On other occasions, I also remember sending out annual statements to clients with overdue payments. I didn't realise it back then that having overdue payments meant that my parents business might not have been doing well (don't worry, their business is still thriving!). My only thought was that the stamp was so super cute, it looked like this:

What a nice and subtle way of collecting payments.

I still collect payments these days, but I don't use crying emoji to get my point across. I use polite, sweet language - because I think it's only natural to do so, but also maybe because somewhere in the back of my mind I remember how I used to help my parents send out subtle overdue payments to all their clients.

They say you have everything in you to succeed at anything you want in life.

Sometimes when I think about where I've been and what I'm about to do, I do think it's true. Stay tuned to find out!

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