Thursday, June 30, 2011

Ramble on Thursday: Oh! I'm tired

We are already coming to the end of the first half of the year, and I already feel exhausted. So many of friends have given me advices what to take to boost my energy level, but so far, I have not follow any. I guess I just need a break.

A long break, but not too long, or else my brain will be rusty, where I can rest my tired brain. Physically, I’m not tired because in the morning, I feel energetic and always ready to tackle the day. But when it's inching towards the end of the day, my brain is slowly telling my body, “Hey! You need to slow down. I’m running out of fuel.”

As a commander to the body, the rest of the body parts will listen to the brain. One by one will slowly shutting down their engine. By the time, it was ten o’clock at night the whole body is screaming for bed.

But there’s one part of the body who refused to listen to the wise brain. The HEART. The heart would always go against the brain’s command. The heart will say, “Huh! Still early. Why should I go to sleep?” 

The heart will then persuade the others. “Hey friends, why are you slowing down? It’s still early. Lot’s of thing you can do. Get up! Do what ever you want!” The heart will continue to coax and persuade the others.

When the legs and the arms dragged the body to bed, the brain was very happy, but the heart never gave up. It continues to whisper to the eyes. “Come one Eyes. It’s too early to sleep. Why not read?” and he will chant, “Read! Read! Read!” 

After continuous chanting and whispering from the heart, the eyes gave in. “Oh yeah! I wanna read,” said the eye. “Hand, can you take the book, please?” 

Hands, who have always had a soft spot for the eyes took the book from the night stands. The body and the legs have no complaints. To them as long as they get to rest on the bed, they are okay. That made the brain very annoyed, and it kept reminding the eyes of how tired he is. The brain forced mouth to keep on yawning.

When the eyes ignored the mouth, the brain got very upset and screamed, “ALL! Go to sleep and rest before I EXPLODED!."

That got the eyes attention. “Oh! Okay brain. I'm sorry. I go to sleep now,” said the eyes. The hand put the book away, the eyes slowly closed, while the mouth recites the SYAHADAH, and the rest of the body relaxes.

The brain smiles and said “Good night all, see you in the morning."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My Little Girl and Durian

WOW! There’s a lot of foods for my buka puasa (iftar) today. I have to thank my mother-in-law, who is kind enough to cook all those foods. 

There were ‘ayam kampung masak cili api’, ‘ayam goreng’, ‘sambal udang’, veggies, and the kids favorite, ‘santan durian’. On top of that, my hubby brought back ‘Roti Boy’. Hmmm…makan sakan la..

This morning, before I left for work, Zara asked me for some money to buy 'durian'. Since I don’t have small change, I gave her RM50, and she gave it to her grandmother. Zara loves durian very much. Every time we passed by the durian seller, she would always said, “Sedapnya…” (Delicious).

So when I gave her the money this morning, she was the happiest person, because she will get her durian. 
Damn! I thought it would only cost me RM30, but I was wrong.  The durian is expensive. It was RM10 per piece, but I'm okay because it was for my kids.

So today, Zara had her durian feast. She had eaten those durian before my mom-in-law cooked it. When the santan durian was ready, she was the first one to eat it too. She ate it with bread, dipped into the santan. Hmm… Yummy! Yummy!

I also like 'durian', but not so much like my kids. It can give me headache. Because of that, I only eat it a little. Furthermore, the ‘ayam kampung masak cili api’ was much more appealing than the santan durian. Heh! The ‘ayam kampung masak cili api’ is one of my favorite dish. Hot and spicy!

So who else has made 'santan durian'? Did you eat with glutinous rice or bread? What ever it is, durian rules!!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


I never felt like this before
When I don’t know what to do
I was lost without you
Oh dear, where are you?

I felt like drowning
In the streams of numbers
It looks alien to me
And it doesn’t mean anything to me.

Today, my head almost exploded
From working non-stop
I got to stop
or else I meletop (exploded)

Lately, everything didn’t look good
Including my favorite book
What can I do?
To bring back the mood

How long will it be?
Before Mr. Mood knock on me
Will it be soon?
Or do I have to wait for eternity

Will I be happy?
When the future looks hazy
Hmmm… I don’t know
I can only say
What will be, will be…..

For now, I just want Mr. Mood to come back….

Monday, June 27, 2011

Another Sick Baby

My Toyota Corolla is really sick. What do I expect from eleven years old car? If I have my way, I will like to trade it, and take a smaller cheaper car, but my hubby loves it very much.

On Saturday, we took it to Toyota Service Center in Balakong. Well the Service Advisor said they need to check what’s wrong with the car. Well, let just said that, it has been leaking here and there.

As my hubby discussed with the Service Advisor, I went to the waiting room, watching the British version of ‘So You Think You Can Dance?’. To be frank, I never watched this show before; therefore, I was fascinated by all the moves. They are highly talented young men and women.

Not long after that, my hubby joined me, and we ordered coffee from the counter. From our table, we could see what’s going on in the workshop. After waited for more than forty-five minutes, the Service Advisor came. He said besides the steering leaking there are others that leaked too. He further said that we need to leave the car for at least 2 days for them to find out.

I asked my hubby to find how much those going to cost us. He came back, and said it going to cost us another RM7K to repair of those leaks, which RM5K was for steering only. Waa…laaaa…another big chunk of money need to spend on the car.

I told hubby that we should let go the car, but he said, “I’m gonna fix it. I’m going to make it new. Have the body paint done, and it will be good as new.”

He still refused to part with the car, and on Wednesday, the car will go back to the workshop for repair. Meanwhile, he has to figure out how he wants to go to work. He can drive the Golf if he wants to, but definitely I’m not going to part with my Grandis.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Not a happy results.

This morning, I attended the Parent-Teacher Meeting or Report Card’s day at my sons’ school. They had their midyear exam before the school holidays, and today is the day where the parents get a chance to get feedback about their kids progress.

My kids were already shown me their exam papers, so basically, I know where they stand. They know I was not really happy with their results, and they know that any negative feedback from their teachers will means trouble. 

When we reached the school, it looked very chaotic. When I asked them, where should we collect their report card, they said not sure.

After looking around, we saw the notice board that directed us where to collect the report card. Standard one was at the canteen, standard two at the badminton court while standard three, standard four and standard five are in their own classes and standard six at the foyer.

When I looked at the canteen, it looked like market. Very noisy. I wonder whether it was a right place to discuss our children. 

Since there are fourteen classes in standard one, we have to search for the teacher. My hubby found Zaki’s teacher, but then Zaki told him that he has moved to a different class. So, another round of searching. When we found the teacher, she was free. Nobody was with her. 

After I had introduced myself, she showed me Zaki’s report card. His results were not bad, but he’s not in the top ten either. Since the teacher didn’t know Zaki very well, she advised us to see his previous class teachers.

Oh! His previous teacher was really busy. There was a long queue waiting to see her. We were number twenty-five, and since she was still handling number thirteen, we decided to go to see Amir’s teacher first.

Amir class is on the third floor. It was very quiet compared to the chaotic environment at the canteen. Not many parents too, and we didn’t have to wait that long to get his result. Ah! Amir result was really a disappointment. The teacher said he could have done better except that he lacks focus in the class lately.

Not only that, the teacher also said that Amir is a dreamer and always didn't finish his class work. Sometimes, he forgot to bring his book. I looked at him, and he knew that he was in trouble.

After Amir’s session, we went back to the canteen to get feedback on Zaki. Oh! The queue was still long. After more than thirty minutes, it was our turn. The teacher gave a better feedback on Zaki. The only negative feedback is Zaki is shy in the class. Didn’t talk much.

So what do they get when they reached home. Nothing. I didn’t scolded them or lectured them. They knew that we were not happy with them when their father took their PSPs, and bicycles away.

Okay boys. You know what to do. If you want your PSPs and bicycles again, show us good results in the next exam.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Lunch at Tupai-Tupai

I went to Tupa-Tupai for lunch today with my friend, R. My BFF, Y, supposed to join us, but she was on medical leave. So it was only the two of us ladies. Oh! R also took me to Tupai-Tupai on her brand new Red Puegoet. Nice and sexy car. Just like the owner.

We left at 12pm after our meeting, and when we reached there, it was still early. The place was already half full. We didn't go and get the seat first; instead, we headed straight to the foods section. Wow! There were so many to choose from, and I had ‘rambang mata’. 

After checking out the foods, I choose baby kailan fried with oyster sauce, kacang botol fried in chili, ikan masin, masak lemak cili api telur itik (duck’s egg cooked with cili and coconut milk) and ikan bakar cencaru. Since so many ‘lauk’, I asked for half rice only. 

I’m not sure what R ordered, but what I saw on her plate was daging bakar, sambal, and veggies. For drinks, I ordered ice lemon tea whereas R order lime juice.

I was really looking forward to eat my food. The moment it went into my mouth, I felt like my whole mouth burning. The hotness went all the way to my ears. Quickly, I grabbed my drinks to cool it off. Half way through eating, I have to order another drink. 

My non-Malay friends have been laughing at me for not eating hot stuff. Actually I do eat hot stuff, but normally when I cook, I reduce the chili so that it would not be very hot. Otherwise, my tummy will be upset, and that’s what happened today.

Eventhough, it was hot, but the food was yummy, and the company was great. Lots of stories between the two of us. And the best part is the price at Tupai-Tupai is very reasonably. For two persons, it only cost us RM25.00. If I eat at Sooka, I don’t think I get that price. 

Okay, gotta go. Tummy upset. Salam.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Excellence Day

My husband and I took leave today and spent our day going around in KL. But the first destination that we went to was not KL, but Putrajaya.

I went to Immigration Department first to renew my passport, which expired last year. I thought that I would have to wait for a few hours before I can get my passport, but I was surprised. The whole process took less than an hour. Kudos to the Immigration Department for the excellent services.

After that, we headed to EON bank in Putrajaya. Hmm… my husband must have travelled around Putrajaya a lot because he knows all these places. I kept on asking him whether he took the right turns until he asked me to keep quiet. Ahhh… Men!.

When I was leaving the building, I saw a sign board at the parking lot that said, ‘SHORT TERM VISITORS ONLY (less than 30minutes)’. I kept staring at it until my husband asked me what was so interesting. I pointed to him the sign board. We then had a good discussion on that ‘Short term’ on our way to UMW Toyota in Balakong.

I love to be at Toyota Service Center. They have excellent Customer Services. While waiting for my hubby to finish his business with the Service Advisor, I was sitting at the waiting area, enjoying the tea and biscuits that they served. The waiting area has big TV, and it is equipped with few computers for people to surf. They also have free WiFi. I guess people don't mind to wait for hours there.

From Balakong, we headed to KLCC. It was lunch time when we reached KLCC. As usual, the place is packed with office workers out hunting for food. Husband wanted to eat at the Food Court, but I told him, it would not be easy to get a place to sit. True enough, when we reached there, it was packed. 

After going around, we decided to go Aseana Café. The place was full, but we were lucky to get a table. Since I have been to Aseana Café before, I know what I want to order, but hubby was flipping the menu from front to back. As usual, I ordered Spice Chicken Rice for me, and hubby ordered Nasi Lemak with Beef. Both were good.

From KLCC, we went to Tabung Haji to sort out our planned trip. Hubby has finally received the offer and now, both of us can start preparing for our trip. It is a trip that we look forward to. In fact, it is a trip where every Muslim look forward to. At least once in his or her lifetime.

From KLCC, we made one more stop, that is, in Kajang. By this time, I was already tired, and looked forward to go home.

Oh! During that nine hours that we were away from home, I received twenty calls from Zara and Zaki. They took turns to call until I have to ignore it. Do they missed us, or they just wanted to give us a hard time? I guess it is more that they missed us. If possible they wanted to follow, but they can’t because they have school to attend.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Apam Balik and Teh Tarik

Teh Tarik
My along (oldest in the family) came to my house on Sunday. She was on her way back to Seremban and stopped by at my place. I ordered something from her, and she was kind enough to send it to my place. Not only she brought my things; she also brought curry puff, apam balik, kuih keria and keladi goreng for the evening tea. It was hmmmm….sedapnya...

I also made teh tarik, and I brewed my tea first before I mixed it with the condensed milk. All my kids love to drink teh tarik especially if they have it with cream crackers. But the favorite with the kids that afternoon was not the teh tarik, but apam balik. My sister bought two big pieces, and within few minutes, all were gone. They only ate other kuih when the apam balik finished.

They love apam balik very much. On Saturday, my hubby bought three big pieces from our favorite apam balik’s seller in Sg Besi. They finished it too. Everytime they see apam balik, they will want it.

Oh! By the way, the Sg Besi’s apam balik is not only our favorite, but also my office mates favorite too. That shows how popular is the Sg Besi's apam balik!
Apam Balik

Since our current office is far from Sg Besi, it is not easy to get it. Whenever someone go for a meeting in Sg Besi, they will try to get some and bring back to the office. It has to be eaten when it is still hot or warm. Once it is cold, it will not be tasty anymore. Six years ago, when we were based in the Sg Besi office, almost every week we would buy the apam balik. We will not get tired of eating it.

What is so special about the Sg Besi’s apam balik? Well, their apam balik is not that oily, it is not that sweet, you can taste a little bit of saltiness, and the thickness and fluffiness are just right. It suits my taste. What else so special about it? Maybe my friend BSS, who is a great cook, can best describes it than me.


Smoking- The difference between now and 30 years ago

Smoking! What’s so good about smoking that I see so many young girls smoke nowadays. Some of these girls are wearing 'tudung', and they happily smoked in front of this old lady. I don't mind if they smoke in private because when you wear 'tudung', you have a certain image and standard to live up to.

Ahhh! Maybe I’m old that I find it difficult to accept this. Maybe times have changed that if you don’t smoke, you are not hip or cool. Peer pressure, I guess.

When I was at their age, you can hardly see any woman smoking in front of public except if you are at kampong, but then, those who smoked were old ladies. They were not only smoking but also eating and chewing sirih and betel nut. They were social smoker because they smoked when there was kenduri. 

My great-grandma (we called her Uwan) smoked too, but not regular. Once in a while I would see her smoked. She was more of a sirih and betel nut lady. None of her grandchildren smoked either, including my mom.

Eventhough my mom and her sisters didn't smoke, I and my sibling were tempted to try. So what did we do?  Whenever opportunity arise, we would sneak into my grandma room and took her cigarette. Hah! We had to roll the cigarette ourselves. Most of the time we only smoke it without tobacco. Why no tobacco? Because we don't want to be caught sick from smoking, or else our butt will be smoking.

After we took the cigarette, we would run to our favorite place. We smoked under the mangosteen tree or the rambutan tree where they cannot see us. Luckily we didn’t burn down the trees.

But when I was about nine or ten, I did tried once with tobacco. Wow! I felt like I was zapped. I felt dizzy, and after that, I didn’t dare to try with tobacco anymore.

Did I tried to smoke in my adult life? Heh! It is for me to know, and for you to find out, but for your info, as I grow older, I can’t stand the smell of the cigarette, especially if it is rokok keretek.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Let's play quiz!

Haha! My kids were very cute today. The youngest two, Zaki and Zara, were testing my knowledge on animals.

I was having my iftar when they kept me company. Zara had her dinner earlier with her grandma while Zaki was waiting for me to get home before he had his.

Dinner was good as we had curry crab, mushroom soup and fried chicken. Since I was fasting today, my kind mother-in-law also made ‘lepat pisang’, and it’s our favorite.

As I was eating, Zara, with her book and color pencil, were sharing her story with me. So did Zaki. Suddenly, Zara said, ”Let’s play. Whoever can answer the question will get 5 points.”

Her first question was directed to Zaki, “What’s animal eat grass?”

“Cow,” said Zaki confidently.

“Five points for Zaki,” said Zara raising her hand and show five fingers.

“Now, your turn ibu. What animal live in the tree?” she asked.

“In the tree?” I asked, raising my eyebrow.

Quickly Zaki answered, ”Ants,”.

"Not your turn yet!” chided Zara, and then whispered to me,” If you don’t answer you will not get five points.”

“Oh! In or on the tree?” I asked again.

“Never mind! I rephrase," said Zara. “It climbs the tree, and then stay on top of the tree.” She made of snake movement going up the tree.

“Oh!” I said smiling. “Snake.”

“Yeah! Five points for ibu,” she shouted. “Now your turn to ask a question to us,” said Zara.

“Okay. What animal has black and white stripes?”

“Zebra,” answered Zaki. “Five points to Zaki. Now Zara, your turn. What animal has trunk?” I asked.

She looked puzzled. “Trunk?”

“Yeah! Trunk.”

“Elephant,” said Zaki.

The game continued until I finished my dinner. The last question that I asked, “Who is the most stubborn?”, and Zara, raised her hand and answered, “Me.”

“Yeah! Fifty points for Zara,” I said and she was so happy because she finally got points from me.

Hehehe…. All the day job stresses went out of the window.

For your info, Zara is only five year olds while Zaki’s seven.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Saturday Afternoon with Hindi Movie

I’m glad that I don’t have to work on Saturday. It means a lot to me where I can spend my Saturday relaxing with the kids. For the past, one month, I have been spending my Saturday afternoon watching the Hindi movie from either TV2 or TV3.

Watching Hindi movie helped me to stay awake especially in a hot Saturday afternoon. The actors and actress are handsome and beautiful. Their movies are full of colors, wonderful songs and dances. Not only that, I also learnt something about their culture and tradition.

Sometimes I would be flipping between TV2 and TV3, but today, it was totally TV2. They were showing Baabul starring Amitab Bachan, Hema Malini, Rani Mukarjhee and John Abraham. The movie was about the Mili (Rani Mukarjhee) who moved to her in-laws house after she got married. This is part of the Indian culture when the girl married she said goodbye to her family, and started a new life with her new family.

Milli was very happy until her husband died in an accident. She changed from a happy person to a sad women and devoted her life to the memory of her husband.

She lost the zest to live, and when her father in law, Balraj (Amitabh Bachan) saw this, he wanted her daughter in law to be happy again. He approached Milli’s friend, Rajat (John Abraham) who still in love with Milli.

He brought back Rajat from Europe, and pushed them to be together as much as possible until Milil decided to accept Rajat as her husband. She only accepted that, after her father in law explained to her that he wanted to see her happy again. He further said what she had is not life, and he also said that he loves her like his own daughter.

On her wedding day, the father in law’s older brother came and disagreed with the marriage, as he viewed it as something against their culture and tradition. Hah! To make it more interesting, they had a brother who died at a young age, and his widow lived with their family. The older brother pointed out that the sister in law was happy, and didn’t need to find another husband. I like the replied from the widowed sister in law. “If wearing white and eating two times a day, is called happy, then I’m happy,” she said with a sad eye. 

As usual in Hindi movie, they always have a happy ending. So was this movie where the older brother realized his mistakes and agreed to let the wedding proceed.

Eventhough, this movie didn’t have any suspend elements or twists, it was a good movie as it leave a message to those who still practicing and believing in this tradition. To me, it is an eye opener because if I don’t watch this movie, I wouldn’t know that there are still some people in India practicing this. 

Talking about Hindi movie, my favorite Hindi movie is Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. No matter how many times I watched it, I will cry. Here, is the song from the film. Enjoy.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

My Abah, My Hero

It was a very busy week for me, and I hope things would slow down next week. It was very tiring, and at each end of the day, I just wanted to curl up on my bed with my book. 

This week, to be exact 14th June, marked six months since abah left us, but he continues to live in our memory every day. Not a single day passed by without my kids, or me talked about him. And it will be first time we will be celebrating the Father's Day without him.

Abah and mak has been married for 59 years, and they were blessed with seven children, eighteen grandchildren, five great-grandchildren. A very big family and we miss him, especially when Raya is coming soon.

When I went back to Seremban last week to visit mak, I saw his room was kept just they way it was. No changes to the room even after six months. The only thing I saw missing was his medicine, which he kept on the side table next to his bed.

Abah always think about his kids even though he didn’t show it to us. Whenever he knew that one of the kids coming home, he would be the busiest man. Not cleaning the house, but stocking the house with our favorite foods, and would remind mak to cook our favorite.

Heh! Abah loved to eat, and he was a great cook also. If mak specialized in Malay food, abah was the one responsible to introduce us to western food. When we were small, he cooked for us eggs and bean for breakfast or sometimes steaks for dinner. His Fried Rice was fantastic. Sometimes we prefer abah’s cooking to mak. Whenever we asked abah to cook, mak would be happy as she didn’t have to cook for us that day.

Abah was also a great influencer on us. He encouraged us to speak English, and introduced us to the world of Scrabble. I always like to play against him. Eventhough, he didn’t finish his school, it didn’t stop him from learning. Do you want to know why? It was all due to the World War 2. He stopped going to school went the Japanese invaded Malaysia.

After the war, he went to work in Singapore and joined the British Army. He picked up English when he was there. He came back to Malaysia to marry mak, and he became mechanics. They relocated to Port Dickson.

Maybe army was always in his blood. Not long after that, he joined Malaysian army. He didn’t join the Malay Regiment unit but the Electrical Mechanical and Engineering (EME) unit. He continues to excel in this area, and he was selected to attend training in Fort Bragg, Maryland in US. That’s inspired us to do well and further our study in US too.

When I bought my first car, a used car, I asked abah to test and choose the car for me. Not only me, my sisters and brothers, did that too. Every time we had a problem we our car, he would be our reference point. 

He was such a handy man too. Anything that broke down in the house, he would repair it. Sometimes mak would say, “If abah is still around, he will repair this.” Ohhh! She missed her partner. We too!

Ya Allah, ampunkan dosa abah kami. Tempatkanlah dia di dalam golongan orang-orang yang beriman. Amin.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Happy Birthday Boss!

Yesterday was my boss, EG, birthday. Since he is alone here, me and my friend, S, decided to take him out for lunch today. We went to Kelantan Delights at Sooka Sentral. It just a short walk from my office to Sooka. S and Boss went first, and I joined them later as I have something to finish.

When I reached there, I thought they have ordered the food, but they were busy talking and still deciding what to order. It was easy for me because I already decided what to eat. Nasi Dagang with fish and coconut for drink. S order Soto Ayam and soya for her drink.

Since my boss is allergic to seafood, we have to check with the waiter what are the food that do not have any seafood. I don’t want anything happened to him, especially he is alone here. We finally decided to order Mee Ladna for him, and he order lime juice for his drink. For the appetizer, we ordered Keropok Ikan and Keropok Lekor (Fish crackers).

While waiting for our food, we ate the keropok first and ate it with chile sauce. Hmmm...Very nice but we didn’t finish the keropok.

We talked about foods in general, and his comment was that we Malaysian like to think about food. Heh! I have to agree on that, and furthermore we are the nation that greets others with ‘Hey! Dah makan? (Have you eaten?).

He also said that foods are much cheaper here than in England. It’s true, but few years ago, it was much cheaper. Now the food prices here have increased. If the price is not increased, the food portion is reduced. Which ever way, the food sellers, won.

I felt the introduction to Malay food was not complete if he didn't drink the 'Teh Tarik'. I wanted to order for him, but he said he was already full. We told him that ‘Teh Tarik’ is very nice, and he should try it before he goes back to England. He said he would give it a try.

Oh ya! We also plan to take him to eat at the Banana Leaf Restaurant. If you are not familiar with the term, it is actually the way the food is served. Instead of using plate, the rice will be served on the banana leaf with veggies, meats and papadom, and you use your hand to eat instead of fork and spoon. It will be interesting.

Okay..Chao dulu...Salam.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wonderful wonderful Abacus!

How many of you know what is abacus and how to use it? If you don’t know what is abacus, look at the picture there, and you can go to Wikipedia to find more about it.

My first exposure to abacus was ten years ago when Syafiq attended the Mental Arithmetic. Since the teacher gave him a lot of homework to do, I have to also learned how to use it. Furthermore, I had been trying to learn it since I was small when I saw the Chinese tauke used abacus to calculate my mom's groceries.

It is easy to use once you know the concept. But if you do not use it regularly, you will get rusty. That’s what happened to me. After eight years of not using the abacus, I have to learn it again. 

The new mathematic curriculum included abacus as part of its teaching tool. Every student must have abacus, and they must bring with them during mathematics class. I thought that it would be easy for me to use it again, but I was wrong.

When Zaki asked me to teach him using abacus, it took me a while to remember the rules. I have to dig deep into my memory to remember it. Alhamdulillah, I still remember how to use it. I can still remember how to do addition using abacus, but not subtraction. 

When he asked me to how to do subtraction using abacus tonight, I was stumped. I can’t remember how it was done. After few attempts, I gave up, and taught him the traditional way of doing subtraction.

I found that abacus has developed Syafiq’s mathematics skill. He is no great mathematicians, but when it comes to solving mathematics problem, he will get the answer correctly and fast. In fact, there were few times he preferred to use his fingers, as if he has the abacus with him, to calculate than using his calculator. It is much faster for him to get the answer. That's how wonderful abacus is.

Meantime, I have to brush up my abacus again, or else Zaki will have problems doing his homework. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Z & Z love durian
I’m so happy that my little girl is enjoying her school life again. Three weeks before the school break, she refused to go to school. Every morning, I had a battle with her trying to get her to school.

She would get up and had her bath, but when I put on her school uniform, she would take it off. Or some times, she would runs out from the bathroom and quickly get dressed into shorts and T-shirts. Someday she would pretend to sleep even though I know she was awake.

She kept on giving one excuse after another, and I also rang up the school to find out what happened. It seems she was okay at school and no problem.

So after a long break, all of us talked to her. Syafiq, Amir, and Zaki promised her something if she goes to school. She agreed, but at Sunday night, she was in two minds. One moment she said okay, and the next moment she would be pleading to me that she doesn’t want to go.

On Monday, she tried to use the same tactics like before, but I told her if she didn’t go to school, she can lives with her grandparents in Seremban. After five minutes, she knocked on my door and said that she wanted to go, but with a condition that I send her to school.

When she said that, I quickly get ready before she changed her mind. Within 10 minutes, I was ready. We were 10 minutes late, and everyone was already in the classroom. Someone from her class shouted, “Zara!” and she knew that her classmate missed her. 

I walked her to the door and explained to the teacher why she didn’t come. When I looked inside, she was already playing with her best friend, a boy name Harry. Ah! She doesn’t mix well with the girls but is very good with the boys.

When I called her in the afternoon, she was very excited, and said the school was great, and she can’t wait to go.

Oh! I pray that she will continue to feel excited to go to school like before.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Do it before its too late.

Today, I was a little bit slow and tired. Not that I’m not feeling well, but I fasted today. It was actually replacement for those days that I missed fasting in last year's Ramadhan. I still have quite a number of days to do. What about you? Have you replaced yours? If not, better starts now before its too late.

I got up at 4.50am this morning for sahur (early morning breakfast). I normally have light meal for sahur. It was just toast and coffee and imsak was at 5.30am I cannot eat or drink anymore after imsak until the sunset.

Since the iftar (breaking of fast) is at 7.25pm, I left office by 6pm so that I can have my iftar at home. When I reached home, the kids just got home from schools and tuition. Everybody has something to tell me about their first day back to school. Since I was tired, I lie down on the sofa while waiting for iftar.

For iftar, I had a simple meal. It was just a cup of coffee, kurma and curry puff. It was so kind of my husband to bought me the curry puffs; otherwise, I wouldn’t have anything to eat except for the kurma.

Not that, there was no food, but I just don’t feel like eating rice tonight even thought there was ‘lala masak cili api’. Maybe, I go out later when I feel hungry, and when the kids are already in bed. I need to eat something or else I might have problem to fast tomorrow.

It's always take some time to adjust to the fasting no matter how long I have done it. I always felt slow, especially my brain, on the first two days, but once the body adjusted, I would be back to normal. Did I lose any weight when I fast? Yes, but not much. 

Heh! For your info, last year, I didn’t lose any weight at all. I blame it on the varieties of foods that was available for iftar. Talking about varieties of foods, I’m looking forward to the Pasar Ramadan in Bangi. One just need to have the money ready.


Sunday, June 12, 2011

An evening in Seremban

I went back to Seremban today to visit my mom. I promised the kids to take them to visit their grandmother during the school holidays. Furthermore, Zaki has fully recovered as confirmed by the doctor this morning.

We reached Seremban at 6.30pm because we stopped for our tea at Old Timer Kopitiam first, and before we shoot off to Seremban, we stopped at JM Brayani too to buy Chicken Brayani for mom and Musliha.

Not long after we reached, Bang Ngah and his family came, and the house suddenly became more lively. Not from the voices and laughter of the kids, but from the adults. Bang Ngah, as usual, will be telling jokes and stories.

Since the food that I brought back for dinner was not enough, we cooked. What did we cook? A' ha…Sup Kepala Ikan Merah (Fish head soup), Deep Fried Chicken (marinated with Tumeric powder and salts), Masak Lemak Cili Api Ikan Parang with Bacang (my favorite), and for the veggie, it was Bitter Gourd with prawn. Perghhhh…Sodapnya!!!

We didn’t sleep at Seremban because the kids have their music class tomorrow morning, but we stayed until 9.45pm, and watched the FA Cup Final between Terengganu and Kelantan. I didn’t know mom likes to watch football. Maybe, it’s her way to keep dad’s memories close to her. Dad loved to watch sport especially football, and indirectly its influence mom too.
Bang Ngah left before half-time. He was frustrated with the game. He likes to tease Zaki, and tonight Zaki didn't get a chance to escape from him.
“Show me your birdie and I gave your RM50,” he said.
“No way,” said Zaki.
“How can I know you really went through it?” he asked Zaki. “If you don’t show, I gave you RM10.”

Zaki looked at me, and did a quick thinking, and agreed to show it to his uncle. He went to the room with Syafiq and showed it to his uncle. He got the RM50. Easy money! That money will be part of his collection for his Wii.

And before we left, the kids said they will come again to visit their grandma. And since I was in Seremban, I like to share this song 'Apo Kono Eh Jang?" (What happened to you boy?). This song was sung in my hometown dialect. Enjoy it!


Friday, June 10, 2011

Back to normal.

Next Monday, my schedule will be back to normal. Yup! School will be reopened next Monday, and it going to be rush at home and on the highway. I hope all four kids will have no problem getting up in the morning and going to school. 

Since Zaki had his circumcision last week, I was quite worried with his condition. I was worried that he might not recover before school reopen, but Alhamdulillah, he was running and chasing ball this evening. Eventhough, he has not recovered 100%, he can now wears his pants, walks properly and runs.  When I reached home today, the four of them were playing football, and Zaki was chasing the ball with Syafiq.

I seldom see them play together especially during weekdays because most of the time, I will be reaching home late. Hmmm...I should try to get back early, and spend more time with them. 

Since we have not gone anywhere during the school holidays, I was thinking of taking them to see the movie. There are so many good movies showing now that I don’t know which one to watch. Zara wanted Kungfu Panda whereas the boys wanted to watch X-Men First Class. There is also Pirate of the Carribean that I wanted to see. Ahh…why should I cracked my head? Lets their dad decides which one. 

Talking about movie, we are supposed to watch Astro First tonight, but there’s nothing good to watch. The last one we watched was ‘Hantu Mak Limah balik kampung'. Heh! That one was really funny. The whole time, we were laughing. 

However, I missed the ‘Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa’ and ‘Cun’ when it was shown on Astro First. Everyone that I know said it was a good movie, and I hope that Astro would show it soon on the free channel. 

Meantime, I need to check on the school homework. No movie if they didn’t finish their school works. So kids, you know what to do if you want to see the movie.


Treat them like your own sister

It is tough if you are a working mom and no helper at home. I have no maid since 2008 when my maid decided to return to her homeland in Sumatera after working for us for three years. She was good, and my kids still asked for her. We always treat her like our own family.

When she first came, she was only 18 years old, and we trained her. She was a good maid as she listened to what we said. She's also very smart. All her salaries, she kept herself and by the time she went home, she brought quite a big amount of money back to Sumatera.

After she left, we have few maids, but we found that they didn't meet our requirement. Not that we were picky, but there were reasons why we have to let them go.

The first maid had Hepatitis B. Her medical report from her homeland showed that she was clean, but when we sent her for another test, the doctor found her with Hepatitis B. It was a risk to keep her, so we sent her back.

The next one was quite an elderly lady, and she gave us a different problem. She loved to butt into my conversation with my husband. Instead of doing her work, she would join us in our conversation.

The last one that we had, she has an attitude problem. She thought that she had worked in Saudi Arabia that she can boss me around, but she forgot who's the boss in the house. She snapped at my husband, talked back to me, and rearranged the whole house. “Ahhhhh….troublemaker!” I told my hubby. So we sent her back to her agent.

Getting a good and reliable maid is not easy, and once you get them, treat them like your own family. I believe in that. You treat them well they will give their loyalty. If you treat them badly, they will retaliate.

If the maid has an attitude problem, send her back to the agent, don’t abuse her. They are human too.

Two days ago, I read in the newspaper that a maid was abused until she died. Isn’t she human? Isn’t she deserved to be treated like one? I really don’t understand how the couple could abuse their maid until she died.

Is it because of the maid attitude itself, or it’s the nature of the person, cruel and sadists? If it is due to the maid’s attitude, sent her back to the agent. Don’t treat her like animal because if you do, it shows something about you.

Appreciate your maid. Without them, there will be no one to take care of your kids or help you in your housework. No matter how angry you are with your maid, don’t hit her or abuse her. Pause, take a deep breath, and calm yourself. Once you are calm, then only you address the problem. It will help you and your maid.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My little encounter with road bully

Road bullies! Have your ever encountered road bullies before? I had, and it was a year ago. I was not sure what’s triggered the guy to hassle me. Was it because I was slow on the fast lane? I don’t think so because there were many cars in front of me. Were I zigzagging in front of him? Definitely not because  the left lane had many cars.

I was on the NPE Highway on the way back from work. Traffics were heavy. I was on the right lane since I’m heading down south. Most of the cars were moving slowly on both lanes when suddenly a black car behind me kept on flashing his headlights. I couldn’t move to the left lane as there were other cars. The impatient driver changed lane to the left and quickly cut right in front of me on the right lane.

Luckily, I was slow, and I was able to break on time. He then continued to hassle me where he kept on breaking his car break until we reached the Pantai Tol.

He stopped his car at the SmartTag lane, and he came out from his car. I stopped about 20 meters behind his car. He walked towards my car, and I was not sure what triggered me to react to him, I opened the car door. I didn’t go to him but stood next to my car.

He was shouting at me, and I asked him what was the problem. He kept on shouting, and I kept on staring at him. By this time, there were others cars passing by, and some stopped behind me. When he saw cars stopped behind my car, he walked back to his car, and he flipped his middle finger to me. I raised my hand, pointed it to my head and make empty gesture indicated that he had empty head. He glared at me, opened his car door and drove away.

Eventhough I looked calm I was shaking inside. I drove off, and Alhamdulillah, even though it was scary, nothing happened to me.

I was lucky that I only encountered a mild road bully, and I can’t think what would happen to me if I met the violent road bully. Would he kicked and slapped me? What if he has a weapon with him? Would he used it against me? I shuddered every time I think about it.

Some of the bad road bullies can really hurt you. They never think that their action is wrong. To them, they are always right, and they also has a very short fuse. Simple thing can trigger their anger. 

Surprisingly some of these road bullies are mild-mannered guys. But when they are behind the wheel, they changed. Instead of becoming like a super hero, they become super villain and terrorizing people. 

These road bullies need to learn to manage their anger. They need to get helps from the professionals. Don’t wait until it is too late.

Sekian. Salam.

Monday, June 6, 2011

When a nephew met an uncle...

Uncle and Nephew
I had visitors yesterday. A visit from my niece, Iza and her kids, Emil, Mika and Maryam. Three adorable and cute kids. Iza is my oldest niece in the family. Her mom and her father also came yesterday, but very much later.

This is the first time they come to my house since I moved to Bangi, and took this opportunity to visit Zaki. Emil and Zaki are of the same age, except Zaki was born in April, he was in November. An uncle and a nephew.

When they were young, they were not closed. Emil is more closer to Sophia, who is 9 years old, and Kimi, who is eight. They are Emil’s auntie and uncle too. Actually, Emil and his siblings are the fourth generation in the family.

I’m not sure when Zaki and Emil started to be closed. Maybe when they were 5 years old during the Hari Raya holidays. Since then, Zaki and Zara always asked about Emil. Whenever we went back to Seremban or visited my sisters, the first question that they would ask, “Is Emil going to be there? What about Sophia?” 

Whenever these five kids met, just be prepared what kind of havoc they would create. I still remember during Hari Raya last year when the room they played in, looked like a hurricane just passed through. They thought they could escape from cleaning the room. But their Maksu, which we nominated to play the role of the bad auntie, forced them to put the room back in order. But I don’t think she’s playing the role well because she’s the kids favorite. 

When Emil came yesterday, his mom intention was for him to find out from Zaki about bersunat. When Iza asked Zaki whether it was painful, my dear Zaki pretended that it was not painful. Hah! Only me knows how he was after he came out from the OT.

Emil who didn’t want to go through 
bersunat at first was convinced enough by Zaki that it was not painful. After he reached his home, he told his mom that he wanted to bersunat too, and in returns, he wanted PSP. Hahaha, his mom didn’t expect that request. Well Kak Yong, you have until November to get out from that request.

Sekian. Salam.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Mother in the Dream

This afternoon, I saw a youtube link on my facebook wall. The video was on 12 years old Mongolian boy, who sang ‘Mother in the Dream’ in the China's Got Talent. The link was shared by my friend, and I was glad that I watched it.

As I was watching it, even though I didn’t know a single word that was said between the judges and him, or the meaning of the song, I cried. He rendered it beautifully and full of emotion, and he delivered it deep from his heart. If you watch the video, look at his expression.

Oh! His singing touched every audience and judge too. You can see some of the women cried. after finished watching it, I shared the link through my Facebook, and commented that I wished someone can translate what was said between him and the judges, and the lyrics.

My friend then posted the write up below.

A 12-year-old Mongolian boy- Uudam (乌达木 Wudamu in Chinese) who lost his parents at the age of 8 in a road accident singing the song-"Mother in the Dream" (梦中的额吉) to his mother at heaven. He seldom talk about his story, but when he missed his mother, he would sing this song. Besides, he always dream about his mother, sitting beside him.

The song is in Mongolian; therefore, not everyone can understand the lyrics. However, his singing touched every judge and audience in the hall, eventhough not everyone understand the lyrics. He sang out all his love and though to his mother.

A touching song, performed by a boy who got a sad story behind, a voice comes from far Mongolia sending his though to his mother at heaven. A great performance by a 12-year-old boy! He got an interesting and beautiful dream which is to invent a kind of ink that just need a drop to drop on the ground; the whole world will cover with green grass. One more thing to add, his mother wished to see his singing on the stage when she was alive.

I wish him all the success in his talent show and may he fulfill his mother’s wished, and thanks to ricchthefallenangel who upload the video. 

8th Jan 2012.

Here is an update to this wonderful song. Thanks to Reiko, who has been generous enough to share with us the lyrics and meaning of the songs.

Here is the lyric, hope you enjoy it
from - Reiko:

sumeih zeregleend gegee anirlaad
susuglehiin erhend eej mini bodogdana
huugee irene geed suugee orgood
huslee chiltel alsiig shirtee dee

zadgai ten gerd uul ni zamharna
zalbirhiin erhend eej mini bodogdana
argaliin tsogond tsaigaa buliyeelj
anis'haa chiltel alsiig shirtee dee

alsad suuga eej mini
amin hairtai shuteen mini bilee

Huhereh uuls’aas ; hoglerj haragdana
Huugiin tani setgil ; gegelzeed baina
Hunii zeregleend ; huu chini yavnaa
Husliig tani nimgeleed yavaad ochina daa

Alsad suuga eej mini ;
amin hairtai shuteen mini bilee -

In my heart is reappearing the mother in the pray
She offers the milk to the God for me
She also looks at her distant son
My distant place mother, you are the belief which I love

With holy flower dew ~
to make the tea lets you enjoy first
I have found the serene look in her eye

Mama , please come quickly!
Your son awakens from the dream!

I’m riding silver bird in the dream, ~
Flying in the horizon.
Dreamed of you to arrive at ~
The auspicious omen and happiness …..

Mama to wait for me …. Your son is coming

The difference between today's circumcision compared to forty years ago.

Today everything is back to normal. Hubby went back to work after taking the day off yesterday and left me with the kids. I have no complaint about that. It was a lovely time for us to spend our time at home together.

I thought that I was going to have a tough time to take care of Zaki, but he was such an easy boy to take care. He also didn’t lie down on his bed all the time. In fact, he went up and down the staircase making me worried that he might fall, and make it worse. If I compared his circumcision with what my brothers went through before, it was totally different.

When my brothers had their circumcision done, it was such big occasion for the family. The whole family and kampong folk celebrated their journey to manhood. My Bang Ngah was 12 years old while my abang Zahir was two years younger than Bang Ngah. To celebrate, there was a big feast where everybody in the kampong was invited.

The event started early morning. The kampong people would come dressing in their best dress and brought some food or cookie with them. The morning tea was served and later, the womenfolk joined my family members to cook foods for lunch.

While the kampong people prepared the food, my parent was at the hospital with my brothers. At that time, it was uncommon for boys to circumcise at hospital. Most of the kampong kids had theirs done in the traditional way. Hmmm... I don’t encourage any of the young boys to go through that.

Before noon,  my brothers reached home, and they were helped by the men to the house. They were taken to their special bed in the living room. At the living room, the ceiling was covered with a special cloth and so did the wall surrounding the bed. I didn’t know what it was for, but it has something to do with our customs.

My brothers were then put side by side, and their sarongs were then tied to a string which was strung to the special cloth. This was done in order to avoid the sarong from hurting the newly cut skin.

They were treated like princes, and they were not encouraged to get out from the bed. Foods and drinks were sent to them. There were always someone with them, and at night time, there was music to keep them company.

It was not live band singing rock songs, but a violinist and his group singing folk songs. The group was led by an old man known as To Ki Jambut, and it was the main event where everybody was looking forward to. Not only people from my kampong came to the house, but those from the next kampong also came to watch the performance by To Ki Jambut.

Heh! I don’t know whether my brothers enjoy the music, but for one thing they can still remember the old man.

Looking at what my brothers went through and what my kids went through, It was such a vast difference.  We don’t have a big feast, no musician, no special treatment, no special place for them to sleep and the only common thing is the sarong still needs to be tied to avoid hurting the little birdie.

Ahh… modern world!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Oh! Sakitnya...

Alhamdulillah! Zaki circumcision went well. He cried for a while after he came out from the Operation Theater. Maybe because he was still drowsy and confused, or he was in pain.

Let’s see how the day begin. We have to be at the hospital by 8am for admission. Therefore, we have to leave the house latest by 7am. We also have to send  b my in-laws to my sister in law house in Kajang because my sister-in-law and her youngest daughter were going for Umrah today.

My husband’s plan was only me, Zaki and him to go to Ampang Putri Specialist Hospital, but the kids have a different plan. Zaki insisted that Amir to come along, or else he would not go to the hospital. When Amir goes, it means Zara will also go. When Zara goes, Syafiq needs to come along and looks after her because my husband has to leave by 9.45am to go and send her sister to airport. So everybody went to the hospital to cheer Zaki.

During the trip to the Ampang Putri, Zaki was very quiet. He was not his usual self. He also didn’t play his PSP like usual. When we reached there, I could see that he was worried. He didn’t know what to expect as the stories and experiences shared by Amir and Syafiq were conflicting.

After the registration, we went to the ward. The nurses were good. They engaged him in conversation and finally, he forgot about his worries. After they had taken all his details, I helped him to change to the hospital gown.

The nurse asked who would be accompanied him to go inside. I said my hubby. Zaki wanted me to go with him, but I told him that I would wait for him when he came out.

At 9.20am, the nurse called him in. He kissed me, and my husband took his hand and walked to inside. I prayed that he would not cause any problem and chicken out. Ten minutes later, my husband came out and said that he already knocked out.

At 10.15am, the nurse came and told me that it was done, and Zaki's in the recovery room. I followed her, and I saw Zaki was restless and started to cry. He also tried to get up. The nurses and the doctor had to hold him down.

When I reached there, he was yelling, “Sakit! Sakit (Painful).” I looked at the nurse, and she said she had given him medicine. It took me a while to calm him down. When he was okay, we pushed him back to the ward.

He still cried when he was in the ward, and when I asked him whether he wanted Amir and Zara to come in, he nodded. When Syafiq, Amir, and Zara came in, he looked a little bit happy. I also showed them the skin that was cut off.  He kept asking for it, and holding it, as if, part of him was missing.

At 12pm, he said he was hungry. He hasn’t eaten since 10pm the previous night. The nurse gave him warm water first to make sure that he would not vomit. He didn't vomit, and after waiting for half and hour, I got him sandwiches and Milo. He finished the sandwiches and wanted more.

My husband reached the hospital at 1pm from the airport. The other three went out with him to have lunch at McDonald while I helped Zaki to change into his t-shirt and sarong. When my hubby came, he bought us Mc Donald for lunch. Zaki finished his while I didn’t finish mine because of my sore throat. I can’t swallowed anything without feeling pain.
 I thought when he reached home he would just lie down on the sofa, but he didn’t. He went up and down the staircase, holding his sarong and walking slowly. When I asked him whether he felt any pain, his replied, “Sikit aja (a lit bit only).”

I am worried how he is going to sleep tonight knowingly that he likes to sleep on his stomach. He will be sleeping in Syafiq’s room tonight, and I definitely will have a sleepless night.

Oh yea! He wanted Wii as his present to go through the pain. No more RM10 that he wanted earlier. It must be his older brothers’ idea. Will he get the Wii? I don’t know. The father has to pay for that, but I overheard that he promised Zaki next week. Let’s wait and see!

Sekian. Salam.