Category Archives: General

The first 4 months

Livia’s first two months went on very quickly. We extended the services of our confinement lady, Mei Je, for two additional weeks. I must say it was a wise choice as we were not weighed down by Livia. However, after she left, my wife and I had to take care of Livia.


Livia few days only

I must say that Mei Je’s services were excellent. The stuff she cooked was tasty and she does housework for us. I had no problem with her. She even came back to take care of Livia when she was on a break after her next assignment.


Livia slightly older than one month

Our new Filipino helper, Elena, arrived before Mei Je left. The latter had some time to train Elena before she leave for another job. My wife and I took care of Livia exclusively after Mei Je left. Elena’s job was to do housework but she slowly took over our role on the third month. My wife’s maternity leave lasted for 4 months.

10 days after her birthday, i registered her birth at the National Registration Department. The queue was pretty short. It took me only half an hour.


Bathing Livia for the first time. My confinement lady guided me throughout the way. Livia poo-ed before I could put her in the tub. Nevertheless, she was quite cooperative and thus it was quite easy to bath her.

I am glad that I started my own law firm. I became a stay home dad. I had plenty of time for Livia. The only drawback is that I can’t focus on my work much. It gets interrupted every hour. I guess that’s what you call Work Life Balance.

Livia’s growth was pretty quick. At two months, she is taller than an average Asian baby. At 6 weeks, Livia started to interact and speak. Her first word was “Oo”. She mimicked me after I kept repeating the word “Oo”. At her 8th week, she could mimic the word “HI”.


Slightly older than a month

When she reached 3 months, she could interact with us. She would smile or laugh whenever we talk to her or tickle her. She would also mumble and make small gestures like scratching her ear to tell us something. The tone of her voice would also indicate what she wanted. A cough-like sound indicates that she wants to sleep.

Speaking about sleep, Livia’s sleeping habit, like all babies, was erratic. She also wants to be carried to sleep. She wakes up every 1 to 2 hours for feed. We barely had enough sleep. Fortunately, it became better towards the end of the third month but wakes up at 3am – 4am once in a while and refused to sleep thereafter.

We engaged our wedding photographer to shoot Livia’s newborn portrait. It was a terrible experience as Livia was crying most of the time. However, the pictures came out fantastic.

Livia’s full moon party was held at Marmalade Cafe, Bangsar Village II. We had about 100 over guests. The party started from 11am to 3pm. We finished most of the food. I was busy catching up with some friends whom I have not seen for ages.


Decorated by ThinkPartyThoughts!


Part of the full moon gifts from friends.

We brought Livia back to Kota Kinabalu to see her grandparents and grandaunt. Kota Kinabalu’s brunch and coffee craze just started hence we visited a few of the new coffee places like October Coffee House and Santola Coffee @ Kelombong. Mum in law took care of Livia while we were out. My father in law managed to get a bassinet for her. All he did was call the airline to book a bassinet.

We brought Livia to Hippopo Baby Spa when she was 3 months old. We were hoping that she will enjoy the swim and massage. She enjoyed the first few minutes of it but burst into tears after that. Had to calm her down and call it off. Fortunately, we could redeem our payment for next time.

Before we brought Livia to Singapore, we had to get her passport done at the Immigration Department at Jalan Duta. There’s a special lane for children at the department. We were pretty late hence we had to take Livia’s picture at the department. We had a hard time trying to get her to pose for her passport photo. Even the immigration officer helped. She was crying non stop until we fed her. After she calmed down, we quickly snapped a few shots. The best we got was a picture of her looking out from the camera. The others were pictures of her crying.

Toward the end of her 3rd month, Livia’s interaction with people became more frequent. In fact, she craved too much attention sometimes. But she loves staring out the window so I put her in front of the window to kill time.


Livia at 4 months old. Sigh, they grow up so fast!

Goodbye Proton, Hello Mazda 6!

After driving a Proton car for 15 years, I finally said goodbye to this brand. My 5 years old Proton Saga was traded in for Mazda 6 2.0. It certainly cost a lot more but as a businessman now, I would need to drive a nicer car. Furthermore, my Proton Saga was falling apart thus it was the right time to change it.

It was also a business decision. As the car is purchased for the use of my law firm, I am entitled to claim capital allowance. This would mean less tax!

No doubt the car was a good buy. It comes with fuel saving Skyactive technology and various electronic features. Very spacious, the drive is smooth and fuel consumption is great. I think all I have for this car is praises. I guess any car seems better after driving a Proton for 15 years!

My father had always discouraged me to buy an expensive car. That is why I have been driving a Proton all these years.

My Proton Saga was purchased by my car salesman for his sister’s use. It was difficult to get a good price. I bought it for RM45,000. 5 years later, I could only sell it for RM16,000. The offers I got were around RM12, 000 to RM14, 000. I am told that the low price is due to Proton offering discounted prices for their new Saga cars.

The only complaint I have of my Mazda 6 is that it doesn’t have some very basic features.

There is no spare tyre and no auto lock (when the car is moving). There’s no button at the driver’s seat to open to boot!

Since the car quite long, I also can’t park my car in my porch as the road infront of my house is very narrow. If someone parks infront of my gate, I won’t be able to drive my car out. When I had my Proton Saga, I usually bump into such car to get out. Now I have to park my car outside the house. Hope it doesn’t get stolen!

I showed my new car to my client and he said, “Finally, you look like a lawyer!”

Welcome to this world, Livia!!

At about 2am, I woke up hearing my wife groaning in pain. We thought it was just contraction pain and it may go away later. We were scheduled to meet our gynae the next morning.

However, the pain became unbearable and we came to the conclusion that my wife is going in labour. We were not sure because her water has not broke. Nevertheless, we packed our bags and headed straight to Pantai Hospital Bangsar. I brought my dSLR along.

I dropped her at the emergency counter and headed straight to the parking lot. When I got to the emergency counter, my wife was not there. I was told that she had been brought to the maternity ward.

The hospital was almost empty at that time. There were some guards but most of them were sleeping (one was snoring loudly). I wandered around the corridors before finding the maternity ward. There I found my wife on the bed. We were told that our gynae, Dr Patrick Chia, was on the way.

I must thank the person who invented epidural. Within a few minutes the pain went away. Nevertheless, we had to wait for the cervical dilation and I slept on the hospital chair. I had a sore bum a few hours later.

I drove out from the hospital to have lunch and check on our house. I returned to the hospital after taking a short nap at home.

We were planning to have natural birth but we abandoned the plan as our baby’s head was not in the proper position. We had to go for cesarean birth instead. It all happened in a jiff. Within minutes, my wife was wheeled to the operation room.

I had to change to hospital clothes and had to wait in a room.


I took this picture and posted it on Instagram.

Few minutes later, I was escorted to the operation room. By the time I was in the room, the doctors and nurses have started operating on my wife. The room was spacious and cold.

She said she didn’t feel any pain. The doctors and nurses seem to be having a hard time pulling our baby out. I think there were 5 people trying to get the baby out.


At 1:43pm on 1st April 2014, Foong Livia was born. She was 3.5kg.

The nurse immediately brought Livia to another table to clean her up. She wiped blood off her and clamped her umbilical cord. She also cut off Livia’s excessive cord and packed it into a bag.

I then pointed to a bowl filled with blood to the nurse.

“Is that the placenta?”

“Yes”

“Oooooooo”

Livia was then brought to the nursery. I escorted her there while the doctors were patching my wife up. Livia was crying and seems to be shivering from the cold. I held her arms and feet to warm her up.

A nurse gave her 2 injections and she shrieked a little. After spending some time with her, I went back to our ward, C325, to check on my wife. She was no where to seen. I waited an hour and yet still no news about her. I got worried as the doctors and nurses were a bit rough on her. I later found out that she spent some time in the recovery room.

My wife’s second aunt and grandma were waiting at the lounge. They too were eagerly waiting for the arrival of my wife and Livia.

We were swamped with visitors for the first few days. Many brought gifts. Many thanks to those who came.


Livia had jaundice. We had to put her under ultraviolet light.


Livia and I before we left for home.


Livia opened her eyes on the second day. Here we are having a staring contest.

Wife was discharged on Friday and drove her and Livia home immediately. I’ve never driven so slow in my life.

We immediately picked up our confinement lady, Mei Che. She had been a great help. I wouldn’t know what we would do without her. She cleaned, cooked and took care of Livia for us.

My routine didn’t change much but my wife’s routine turned 360 degrees. Livia is being breastfed and she wants her milk every 1 – 3 hours. Sometime my wife takes an hour to feed Livia!

The feeling of being a father is a feeling that I’ve never felt before. Whenever I think of my little one, I feel joy in my heart.

It’s great to be a father!

Chinese New Year 2014

CNY 2014 went well. We were in the Klang Valley most of the time except for one day where we had to travel to Mentakab to meet some of my wife’s relatives. I spent most of my time eating or playing with Finley, my cousin in law’s son.


Finley’s urinal. So cute!

The only thing that marred our CNY celebration was when my sister in law’s bag got snatched at Damansara Uptown while we were having lunch. She had unfortunately left it behind her seat. A young man in helmet grabbed her bag and ran toward a motorcycle driven by an accomplice. By the time I got out from the restaurant, they were already far away. She was supposed to go to Medan for holiday in the evening but her passport was in her bag! She also lost a quite a lot of money, a Samsung Note 3 and an expensive hand bag. We spent our afternoon in the police station (which was just a street away from the restaurant!). The bastards got away.

Our reunion dinner was at one of the Chinese restaurants at Seri Petaling. It was just my dad, my wife and myself. Mum decided to boycott the place cause she didn’t want to eat there. wtf. Fortunately, she didn’t kick a fuss when we had dinner at Chili Padi on the second day of CNY.

On this rare occasion, Aussie boys Umeng, sLoonG and Jin Han were back this Chinese New Year. It’s been a while since the three of them were in the same country at the same time.


Umeng on his first night in KL.


At WK’s house.

We spent quite a bit of time “playing cards” and attending open houses. My luck was almost the same last year. I won most of my Blackjack games against the banker. However, I lost all my dosh when I became the banker!

Speaking about open house, we had one at our home on the 4th day of Chinese New Year. We bought curry puffs, Nyonya cakes and mee siam for everyone. It lasted from 1pm to 1:30AM. I was so exhausted by then. Different groups of people come at different times!

I am glad that I made it to En Peng’s Pai Tin Kong session at his house on the 8th day of Chinese New Year. I’ve been attending it since high school and I thought I shouldn’t miss it at all. Attendance this year was sightly better with WK, Kiang, Mandy, Ping, Yoke Chin and myself. We folded some offerings while waiting for En Peng to serve the roasted pork. [Edit: Unfortunately, this is my last picture of En Peng’s father. He passed away on 28 February 2014 after a heart attack. May his soul rest in peace]


Kiang got told off by En Peng’s dad for wearing a cap while praying. Caught En Peng’s dad in action Haha.


Burning offerings


Firecrackers!

It’s our turn to organise CNY dinner with my sisters and their family. We had steamboat again.


Group picture taken with my camera phone. I broke my dSLR after I fell off the tripod! ARGH

It was a rather happening Chinese New Year. The year of the Horse will certainly bring joy, luck and happiness. HUAT AH!!

The year 2013 at a glance

2013 had been a good year. My practice was doing well. My book got published. I don’t remember any bad thing that happened that is worth a mention here.

The Firm

I had more work than last year. I don’t have many litigation cases but I managed to defend a patent infringement case in the High Court and successfully defended it in the Court of Appeal.

I also managed to get some large corporations as my clients. I think my ability is win work is not due to my media features but based on my reliability and likability. I always return calls, emails and messages within 24 hours. I am contactable 24/7. I am easy with my clients and not calculative. I will do what I promised. I think these are the keys of winning clients. Media features and articles are just a method to increase leads and educate potential clients and clients of my skills.

This year also marks the departure of my partner, Dymphna, to greener pastures. My previous intern, Chia Ann, rejoined me as an intern after her return from UK for her studies.

Books

This year also marks the first time I went on a reading rampage. I’ve never enjoyed reading books until last year. I always thought I don’t need to read any books since I read case laws and contracts everyday. However, this year I read more than 20 books.

Karpal Singh’s book made the biggest impact on me. It made me rethink of the death sentence. His description of a mother dressed in black outside the prison waiting for her son to be executed was a sad thought.

Former High Court’s Judge, Ian Chin’s autobiography, “Justice Encounters”, was a good read too. This book comes with a CD of few hundred judgements written by him. The late PG Lim’s autobiography, “Kaleidoscope“, was also a good read. I love how she described her life was in the 1920s and 1930s.

I also bought some old antique books. I have a copy of a 1942 copy of Frank Swettenham’s Footprints in Malaya. His description of old Malaya is intriguing. He met Yap Ah Loy (third Kapitan of Kuala Lumpur) for a meal and he knows the guy who discovered Cameron Highlands!

The Last Eunuch of China – Life of Sun Yaoting has great insight of the Forbidden City during the Ching Dynasty. Sun’s story begun with him castrated by his own father. He was there was the last Emperor was kicked out from the Forbidden City. Of course, I read the Puyi’s, the Last Emperor of China, autobiography as well.

January

Visited Beijing, China. It’s my first time in motherland. Finally got to touch and climb the Great Wall of China.

March
I was elected as a Kuala Lumpur Bar Committee member. I was appointed to chair the Kuala Lumpur Bar Information Technology Committee.

April
Visited Singapore to give a talk on Malaysian data protection. I also attended the Startup Asia Conference. The conference was a great eye opener. It was great to see innovation at its best.

May
13th General Election. Disappointing results. But great build-up before election. It was my first time attending rallies in Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu.

My wife and I ran the Borneo Marathon. We both clocked 1:22. 

June
June was busy month for me. I was networking around.

I attended tech startup conference Echelon @ Singapore.

I went to Melaka to speak on “Marketing for Young Lawyers“. Got to meet some awesome Melaka lawyers.

I also gave a talk in Kota Kinabalu on data protection to the lawyers there on the invitation of the Sabah Bar.

July
Visited:-


London,


Liverpool


Blackpool


Brastilava, Slovakia


Vienna, Austria.

I quite like our visit to Williamson Tunnels.

September


Celebrated my 32nd birthday with good friends and great food!

November
My first book, Compendium of Malaysian Intellectual Property Cases – Trade Marks, Volume 1, was published. I am told that we sold 50 books in December!

Wife and I visited Umeng in Macau!

I am happy to announce that we will be expecting a new member of our family. Our daughter estimated to arrive in April 2014!


We caught our little one yawning at 24 weeks.

Fatherhood here I come!

ThinkPartyThoughts @ Markets, Jaya One

On 5.10.2013, ThinkPartyThoughts (wife and her partner’s little start-up selling partywares) set up a booth at Markets @ Jaya One. It’s a quarterly bazaar held at Jaya One with numerous stores selling all sorts of stuff like clothes, accessories, food and handicrafts.

It was their second time setting up a booth there and I had to help them carry their stuff (I’m their coolie).

They now have a permanent spot at Sunday’s, Bangsar Village II. Ms. Helen Read (founder of local fashion plus size boutique, Ms Read) liked their product and gave them a spot.


At Sunday’s.

Anyway, the traffic in Jaya One was not bad. We had a steady flow of traffic and we got a good spot in front of Starbucks. Hence, we took two tables to accommodate our friends who came to visit and hang out. I cant remember how many drinks we bought from Starbucks.

We were there from 9am to 6pm. It was fun in the beginning but started to get draggy towards the end. Sales were mostly made in the afternoon but slow in the evening. Anyway, the purpose of setting up the booth was for exposure and publicity purposes. I think they achieved that in the end.

It was nice change from working as a lawyer to a retail outlet coolie.

Hunderwasser House @ Vienna, Austria

We visited the Hunderwasser House. It’s a building built after the concept of Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser with architect Joseph Krawina. These buildings have weird but interesting concept. Floors are uneven, the walls are colourful. Trees are grown inside or attached to the buildings. It stands out from the traditional stone buildings of Vienna. There are people living in the building.


Toilet of Modern Art…you need to pay to get in


I guess these people got fed up with tourist knocking on their doors thus this sign.

A few blocks down the road lies KunstHausWien, also another building built after the concept of Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser. This one is a little bit smaller and has a museum exhibiting Hundertwasser’s works.


There’s a background story to this pose but let’s leave this to another day


Uneven floors.

There is a garden and a small cafe at the back of the museum. I didn’t like the place much as it was dark and damp. Further, I dislike the uneven floors.

Tell You Later

*RING RING*
Wife: Hubby, where are you now?
Husband: Tell you later.
Wife: Huh? Why tell me later?
Husband: Tell you later la.
Wife: Why??? TELL ME NOW!
Husband: TELL YOU LATER!!
Wife: TELL ME NOWWWWW!!!!!!

Samsung Laser Printer – SCX-3405

As some of you may know, I operate a paperless home office. Paperless here doesn’t mean “no paper” but less paper. I do not retain physical copies of my files and I scan all my hard copy documents before disposing them or returning them to clients. This saved me a lot of office space.

Paperless law firm is not a new concept. I’ve know many large international to local small firms doing that. In fact, I was trying to help the KL Bar to implement a paperless system.

I still print and photocopy documents. I currently use a worn out second hand photocopy machine, an old printer and a Samsung Monochrome Laser Multifunction Printer (SCX-3405).

The second hand photocopy machine is nothing to shout about. I rented it for RM90 a month. It breaks down once in a while but it will magically heal by itself after a few hours. But there had been times where the machine broke down while I was in a hurry. Thank god for back up printers.

The Samsung printer on the other hand is great. It’s a 4-in-1 multifunction device. I use it for personal and office use.


Surface fit for anything A4 size and below


Quick installation guide. Very, very easy. It’s plug and play!

It can print, copy, scan and fax. I normally use it to scan incoming documents (for archiving purposes). There’s a feeder on top of the printer which allows me to copy numerous documents at one go.

One great function about this printer is that it has wireless printing from mobile devices.

Couple of months ago, my firm had a little disaster.

My roof leaked couple of weeks ago after heavy rain. Many of my documents were damaged by water. Documents printed by the old printer were badly damaged. The ink faded! However, documents printed by my Samsung printer was okay as the ink did not fade.

Other than that, the water flooded my room and consequently my laminated floor was damaged. The power tripped causing a few electronics to short circuit. My Samsung printer was also exposed to the incoming water. Fortunately, it is still working after having a “bath”.

For more information on the Samsung printer, please visit Samsung’s page.

Think Party Thoughts! – Part II

After barely 5 months, my wife and Jessica’s little startup ThinkPartyThoughts, an online boutique partyware store, is now available at Sundays, Bangsar Village II!

Sundays is owned by the Ms Read family who owns Ms Read (well known plus size clothes boutique), Plan B and Ben’s Independent Grocer. Helen Read’s daughter bought their products and was interested in putting their products at Sundays. It’s a big breakthrough for my wife and Jessica as their little startup is just a few months old. Sales have picked up quite a bit. The ladies worked 24/7 to get their products out!

My Thoughts

This handcraft business is quite interesting to me. It’s a tedious job. My wife and Jessica spent a lot of their them putting things together. I help them out sometimes by doing no-brainer jobs like gluing things together. I usually give up within an hour. I could be spending an hour making products worth RM100 (just a rough estimate). However, my time cost for my legal services is about RM700 an hour. Thus, the work didn’t really interest me.

Of course, I have no control over ThinkPartyThoughts’ business but it doesn’t stop me from wondering how can one scale this business to a multi million dollar business. My wife has a book that says handicraft business doesn’t make millions but I beg to differ. So long there is a demand, millions can be made.

I think the most effective way to do so is to outsource the production of the handicraft. It could be to housewives or even our local kampung folks. We could pay them for each piece that they product (e.g 1 – 5 cents per piece). With an endless (rather substantially) supply of ready to sell products, one can have increase their distribution chain.

It goes without saying that distribution chain must be wide. Other than local retailers, I think focus should be given to the foreign purchasers who want to purchase high quality handicraft at a lower price. ThinkPartyThoughts products are in essence “western” products thus it appeals to Westerners too.

Other than that, ThinkPartyThoughts can pivot by offering to their distribution network by selling products of other aspiring handicraft entrepreneurs. The former can charge a commission for each product sold.

Well, easier said than done. Nevertheless, I think following this method the business can flourish faster and easier.


ThinkPartyThoughts has really quite name cards!

Lastly, ThinkPartyThoughts will be at the Markets@JayaOne on 18 May 2013! Details are below!

Time: 11am – 6pm
Venue: Jaya One, Section 13, No.72A,
Jalan Universiti,
46200, Petaling Jaya,
Selangor