ViolinStar.NET

  • Posted On: March 15th 2021 at 10:17 pm | 2 Comments
    Categories: Fashion, Friendship, Insights, Korean related, Makeup, Personal life, Rants, Shopping, Wants, Work

    I was watching YouTube and saw 1 video from a YouTuber about minimalism spending. I thought it will be a good topic to talk about in ViolinStar.NET too. I haven’t been blogging as much as I hope to this year. I also haven’t post any photos on my Instagram accounts in 2020 and 2021 so far.

    One of the first few things I realised after turning 30 in last December is that my health/body is not as strong as before. I can’t stay up late without impacting my mornings. I really need at least 7 hours of sleep everyday. I can no longer work so hard because I will get burn out. I need to pace myself in both personal life and work life.

    I also need to save up for the future and rainy days. After seeing 1 of my friends who got cancer when she is the same age as me back in 2019, I cannot underestimate the amount of money and insurance coverage I need to protect myself. Having a deep pocket provide more options for treatment too. Insurance is important if you don’t have really deep pockets. Hence, I really should not spend wastefully like what I did in my 20s.

    These are the categories that I want to spend less in my 30s as I learn from my mistakes in my 20s after reviewing my expenditure in my 20s. Yes, I do track all my expenses ever since I started work in an Excel file. :smile: I should have done it over MySQL on hindsight but oh well. Data analytics will be much easier if I am not tracking in Excel. :sigh:

    (1) Buy less lower quality bags

    I spent quite a bit of money buying fashion bags that are either in trend or of poor quality (such as Charles and Keith) when I was in my 20s. I even bought a Steve Madden bag from San Francisco. I thought it was leather but it turned out to be PU. It only lasted for a few months? It really cannot carry heavy stuff and it was the most expensive backpack I ever own at that time? It was US$54.44 (S$79.16) and only lasted a few months. :sigh: I have now discovered Fjallraven Kanken and got the second original kanken bag in Beijing after my first bag lasted for more than 2 years. We are talking about more than 2 years of daily use. It could have lasted even longer if I didn’t see a sale at Beijing store and decided to replace my old, dirty and worn out bag.

    I will still buy bags but I think I only want to buy the better quality ones. For backpacks, I am sticking to Fjallraven Kanken or Thule. For other bags, I think I want to either get real leather bags which I can send for servicing/repairs or nylon/cloth bags which can be dried which I can bring out on rainy days.

    (2) Buy less makeup

    I spent my 20s exploring different types of makeup and also going for makeup classes. I bought mascara that I end up throwing away after using 2 to 3 times? Yeah, it’s the cheap ones from Innisfree/Watsons but to use them for less than 5 times before throwing it away because they have a expiry date of 6 months is just too wasteful. I still like lip and eye brow makeup though. Sadly, this pandemic has force us to wear masks all the time when we are out so there’s really no need for lip makeup anymore. Maybe when we don’t need to wear masks, I can go back to using lip makeup again. :happy:

    I definitely want to buy less mascara or eye shadow palettes or eyeliners since I am just too lazy to put on full makeup and these items expires too fast for me to use them up.

    (3) Buy less costume jewellery

    When I am in my 20s, I really love to buy earrings and sometimes necklaces. I used to buy at least 20 pairs of earrings when I go to South Korea for vacation. I buy earrings and necklaces in whichever country I go to. I have some that I really love and some are just brand new which I haven’t wore. I have some that is very dressy which I can only wear when I go for wedding lunch/dinner. I really like accessorising my outfits and spend quite a bit on them. It makes me very sad and I can’t bear to throw away the ones that has either tarnished or rusted. As a result, I am always running of space to store them. :sad:

    I have learned to buy fine jewellery in recent years. These don’t rust and I can send them for professional cleaning at the jewellery stores. My first fine jewellery necklace is a silver necklace from Tiffany and Co. It’s from their Return to Tiffany collection and I bought it when I went to San Francisco in 2018. I remembered walking in to want to buy the music note necklace but they don’t have it so I fall back to my backup plan of the Return to Tiffany necklace. I have sent it for professional cleaning in Singapore boutiques numerous times. Silver is not really a fine jewellery piece but since I paid a premium (because it is Tiffany and Co), I decided to consider it as a fine jewellery piece. :smile: I was quite sad when my pendant was badly scratched after using for some time. I even brought it to ask if they can polish it and the sales associate told me it costs S$40 for polishing. :shocked: Ever since then, I decided not to get another silver piece for a few hundred of dollars. It’s either yellow gold or white gold for me.


    Posted On: January 11th 2021 at 7:05 pm | 1 Comment
    Categories: Insights, Personal life

    Happy 2021! 2020 has been an interesting year that I am sure many won’t forget. The pandemic has been with us for close to a year and accelerated many technological advancements which will probably take another 5 to 10 years without COVID-19. Who would have thought that a pandemic would drive technological advancements in such a high pace?

    I wanted to review the following new year resolutions I had for year 2020. I didn’t manage to fulfil all of them but I did try.

    1. Sleep early everyday, even on weekends. I failed these miserably. I am even sleeping at 3am sometimes. Sigh.
    2. Eat more healthily. Yes I am drinking more probiotics. Healthier eating and less fried food. Can I consider this as done?
    3. Exercise more. Thanks to the pandemic, I am staying at home even more hence got more chance to workout. Like Chloe Ting workout videos and Yoga Movement on Zoom.
    4. Practise violin more. Sigh, didn’t manage to hit this. :sad:
    5. Spend wisely. I am less prone to impulse buying but I got a luxury bag this year. I think I am going to fail this badly in 2021 though.
    6. Spend more time reading up on investments and invest for the future. I still didn’t get to learn how to invest although I did make a few investment decisions this year. 2020 is a good year for investment which I wished I am more brave to make the decisions to buy certain stocks.
    7. Get a technical certification this year. I got 5 in 2020! 3 Azure certifications, 1 AWS certification and 1 Splunk certification.

    4 out of 7 completed in 2020. What should I set for this year? Hmm… maybe I will set the following and strive to complete as many as I can.

    1. Sleep before 1am everyday, even on weekends.
    2. Continue to eat more healthily.
    3. Workout at least once a week.
    4. Practise violin more.
    5. Spend wisely and keep to the budget.
    6. Be brave and make the investment decisions needed to improve my finances.
    7. Get another technical certification this year.

    Hopefully I will do better this year than 2020.


    Posted On: October 20th 2020 at 9:10 pm | 1 Comment
    Categories: Insights, Personal life, Rants

    Gone are the days where we see at least double digits of new COVID-19 cases. It’s hardly any case in the community now but there are still massive testing. In fact, it seems like testing and tracking are increasing.

    The world after COVID-19 is going to be very different and I am starting to see the first signs of the new world in Singapore now. :sigh:

    I’m not sure if I will like the new world post COVID-19. :confused: Bleh. Probably not. :sad: