agirlnamedclara thank you 2020 grateful blessing
Health & Beauty,  Life,  Money

Thank You 2020, You’ve Been a Blessing

This year, nobody can escape the impact of the arrival of Covid-19. As you may have read in the news, some have it very tough, some not so, and the rest maybe even richer than before (hint: Zoom, Amazon, the 1% society).

I myself find the year 2020 as a blessing. Compared to the lockdown and no travel this year, I feel that God opened the floodgate of blessings to me.

I’m sorry if this isn’t the case for you… I treat my blog as a diary, hence I always write a yearly review as the last post of the year. 

Blessed 2020 – Career

exness malaysia office agirlnamedclara

I landed a new job in the middle of the year. The role was on hold, but then the recruiter called me again to inform me that the position was reopened. After sweat and tears (I had to pass the math test), I finally got the role.

Been working with startups my whole life, I never thought that one day I would work with a mature, successful, and very generous company. I’m not holding a high position, but I feel as if finally, this is it.

You’ll grow old when you stop playing!

Thank you, God, for blessing me with a great employer in the midst of the pandemic.  Thank You, that I:

  • get many benefits (free meals, dental, optic, gym, transportation, flights + accommodation, Christmas present, etc)
  • can play slide every day in the office
  • become healthier thanks to the almonds + walnuts + cashews in the pantry (protein snacks for the muscles = checked!)
  • don’t need to go for a monthly massage anymore because there are massage chairs

Also read: “God, Why Me? Have a Break at Kenny Hills Bakers, Ampang”
Also read: “Working from Home: How to Maintain Your Weight”

Blessed 2020 – Travel

cute cat banana passport cover jetoy on christmas tree agirlnamedclara
Giving my passport a new cover. Now, it’s ready to travel again next year!

I’m glad that I could meet my boyfriend in Bali after Valentine’s Day because Malaysia starts to implement a lockdown in March. At least, I could see him before that and still able to enter Malaysia.

I may not be able to go for my solo annual trip this year, but I’m glad that I received a partial refund for my flights (one more is still in process).

2020 travel plan vs reality agirlnamedclara safari game south africa

Thank you God for 2020, I couldn’t travel this year but I:

  • have 21 days annual leave + 15 days public holiday + 7 days carry-forward leave in 2021 (that’s 43 days in total!)
  • have more time to save money = upgrade my flight (I’m eye-ing Emirates’ economy class)
  • more annual leave = extending 1 day of my annual trip to explore Johannesburg, 2021 (I’ve booked the hotel, yay!)

Click here for your 2021/2022 travel bucket list

Blessed 2020 – Unexpected Expenses

If you’ve been following my blog, you might know that I’m not a gadget person. I don’t like to buy new gadgets unless mine are broken or it’s a necessity.

Well, this year, I spent quite a lot for gadgets!

At first, I felt sad that the emergency fund that I diligently saved (or the money that I could use for travelling) must be used for new gadgets. But then, thank you God for 2020, that:

  • my personal laptop suddenly dead thus I got myself a good & very light laptop (Acer Swift 3)
  • my broken AC was suddenly fixed for a few months until it’s no longer working, but by then I had enough money to buy a new one
  • it makes me happy that my freelance income allowed me to get my dad a new AC (the old one is spoiled) –  the feeling that I’m an adult and I can take care of my parents xx

Also read: “I’m Building Proper Toilets for Children This Christmas. Will You Join Me?”

Blessed 2020 – Personal Habit

taman saujana putrajaya girl smile sunflower agirlnamedclara
Little Miss Sunshine meets sunflowers – Taman Saujana, Putrajaya

When I was a kid, I always went missing when going out with my parents because I was (and still), a restless girl.

Once, I even approached the security guard and said, “My parents are missing!” and they made an announcement about a lost child.

2020 taught me the art of staying at home aka become a homebody. The result of the ‘training’? Now, I no longer fancy walking in the mall for hours as much as I used to.

I enjoy watching movies at home, sleep, walk in the park to get vitamin D, and read books at home.

Why should I go to the malls, when I have nothing to buy? But I still do it sometimes, especially after meals so I don’t gain weight, hehe!

Also read: “Clara’s CMCO Essentials – Try It!”

Blessed 2020 – Relationship

birthday cake framboise le chocolat sugar box patisserie agirlnamedclara
Framboise le Chocolat by Sugarbox Patisserie – I sent this raspberry dark chocolate cake for his birthday ^ ^

What do couples in long term relationships usually do? Video calls, texting, phone calls?

This year is challenging for couples, especially those in long distance relationships. With the arrival of Covid-19, suddenly LDR = XXLDR 🙁

No amount of video calls, texting, or phone calls can replace real-life meetup.

But, luckily I and my boyfriend share a similar habit: we’re not fans of video calls and we’re good with communicating moderately. We text every day (but not too much), especially when we see or experience something interesting, we would share it with each other.

We’re definitely not the 1-hour video/phone call-type of couple. Once, we accidentally did a video call but ended up starring at each other because we didn’t know what to talk about.

However, it was very heart-warming xxx

Thank you, God, for 2020 because the year made us stronger.

Also read: “A Rainy Day at Penglipuran, Bali, One of the World’s Cleanest Villages”

Blessed 2020 – Investment

girl blue dress ride a car christmas decor mid valley agirlnamedclara
Bye, unit trust!

2020 made me realized that unit trust isn’t for me.

I held my unit trust portfolio for around 3 years and, probably it’s my bad luck that the situation in Malaysia wasn’t good soon after I placed my fund (from political unrest to Covid-19), I saw around RM2k loss.

Not a single cent of profit.

Yeah, yeah, they say unit trust is a long-term investment but when I compared it with my ETF portfolio, I turned to resent it. Here are the reasons why I kissed unit trust goodbye:

  • My ETF portfolio gained profit within 1 year
  • Even though my ETF portfolio suffered a loss in March 2020, but at least I didn’t lose my initial capital. And I got the profit back in the next few months.
  • ETF has a much lower annual management fee than unit trust (0.8% vs 5%)
  • My ETF will adjust the portfolio automatically according to the global economic situation. No more manual switching and RM10 switching fee.

Although I had a very professional and capable UTC, I finally made my decision. Now, I’m not saying don’t invest in the unit trust. But invest in what gives you security over your portfolio and hard-earned money.

Build your ETF portfolio and sign up through
my StashAway referral link for a 6-month fee waiver

Also read: “Tony Robbins’ Investing Rules of Thumb – Simplified”

Disclaimer: investing is risky. The result of your portfolio may differ from mine.

Blessed 2020 – Self-care

healthcare iguard bilberon st ives lotion ufc velvet almond oat milk agirlnamedclara
My new must-have: iGuard Bilberon (eye vitamin), St.Ives body lotion, UFC Velvet oat and almond milk (lactose-free + taste good + not too sweet + high in calcium)

Next month I’ll turn 30 and Covid-19 helped me to slow down and notice whatever changes in my body. Thank you, God, for 2020 that I:

  • realized that I’m now a lactose-intolerant
  • learn to eat well and my weight gain is because of too much caramel popcorn
  • have to move more and watch my diet because it’ll be harder to lose the weight once I reached 30
  • make a promise to myself to sleep latest at 11pm (except gym days on weekdays, it’s unavoidable)
  • am still mistaken as a college girl (finally, this feature is a blessing now that I’m almost 30!!! lol)

Also read: “Workout Tips for Dummies Who Don’t Want to Hire a Personal Trainer”

So… finally, it’s a wrap!! Thank you, God, for blessing me throughout 2020.

Thank you to all of you for reading my blog. I wish you and family a Prosperous, Healthy and Happy New Year 2021 🙂 🙂 🙂

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