Friday, December 22, 2006

Hectic


So, Kakak, how was your day today?

Urm... Kakak busy sangat hari ni. Kakak penat. *sigh*

Oh... ye ke? Why don't you tell me what you had to do...








Sofea's verrrrry busy day



And I thought MY day was bad. Hmmm.




Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Last Weekend's Get-Together

The gathering was sweet.

A bigger turn-out would've made it even more meriah, perhaps. But last weekend's crowd was special enough to make the event worthwhile and memorable.

Some Bits and Pieces I Want to Remember:

The Talk on Women Health Issues
Some parts were a bit too medical methinks, but very informative nonetheless. The cancerous truth is scary. *shudder*

The Mommyhood Sharing Session by the founder of SM
I was holding back tears. The topic was simple... "How to be a 'cool' (read: penyayang, pengasih, penyabar) Mom" in this era, what with all the cabaran global masakini. But the details were a bit too overwhelming for my poor heart. *sebak*
Time tu terbayang muka budak-budak, menyesal giler sebab marah, cubit, tengking and bebel kat diorang the day before.

The Fashion Show
I hate to admit it, but being the model-dipaksa making cameo appearance was actually fun! My 30 seconds of makcik glamour. Nervous, toksah cakap lah, but I went ahead and shook my not-so-little tush and did my little turn on the catwalk (on the catwalk, yeah!), with the spotlights shining on me and the cameras clicking away. But parading on stage in 3-inches-high-tumit(s) boots is no joke, I tell you.

The Emcee Stint
The thought of having to model in the fashion show threw me off-bearings as the Pengerusi Majlis. It had me fumbling through my notes for a while. As a result I had extra many fluttery butterflies in my tummy. Even Butterflutter's presence and moral support could not extinguish. *blows kisses at mama butterfly*

The UkS Down Memory Lane Slideshow
Entertaining and endearing. My my, how much we have grown over the years. Powerpoint slide #28 proved that I was several kilos lighter 5 years ago. *sigh*

The Celebrity Who Came
I met Nazrah in the flesh!! :) She's definitely more comel in person, and not makcik-looking at all. And her lil princess Aishah is much taller than I thought.

The In-house Celebrity aka Tudung Sifu
In@ Ali of SM makes me want to dress up and look pretty all the time.

The Food
Lunch menu nasi beriani, dalca (I think), salad, fried chicken was good. I took big spoonfuls of the sambal belacan, meleleh hingus tapi cukup puas hati. The cakes were yummmmy. I was smacking my lips and licking fingers lepas tu. Gendang gendut tali kecapi. I didn't get to taste the sponsored cookies tho, coz I was given the goodie bag that didn't have cookies in it.


Enuff wordy-gurdy, here are some pictures.




Friday, December 15, 2006

Playing to Learn and Learning to Play

Part of a child's learning journey is learning through play. Studies have shown that children who engage in this type of imaginative, open-ended play are more creative thinkers who eventually mature into better problem solvers.

This is Aidiin being his Ayah (Dad) 'wearing' his usual accessories, i.e his watch and mobile. Note that this picture was taken last Ramadhan, so a kopiah was another necessity added to Helmy's normal attire. The hilarious part for me was the made-up conversations that he would have. Hello? Hello! Ni Aad-diin. OK? OK, OK! Bye! Bye! Sounded like a very important phone call. Gestures, facial expressions, everything. Markah penuh untuk gaya dan penghayatan. Aad-diin te-pon ni... he would tell me when I asked him what he was doing.

Sometimes I'd catch him with a sejadah (praying mat) performing prayers. Allah(u) Akbar, he'd say out loud, then whisper whisper whisper, reciting other surahs. Allah(u) Akbar lagi. Sujud, sometimes terus meniarap tak bangun balik. Sometimes followed by a series of jumpings: up and down, up and down, up and down. Aidiin sembahyang ke? His response would be a cheeky grin or a bashful smile. Adorably cute and priceless. Mak-mak yang ada/pernah ada toddlers would know what I mean.

Sofea, the cheery chirpy Ms Dilly-Dally, is more imaginative when it comes to role-playing. I don't know if this is the reason she daydreams a lot. Or is it the other way round? Hmmmm...


Occasionally, I'd find Sofea impersonating me. *gulp*

This discovery has made me become wary and cautious (except during 'naik angin' (angry) moments when I cannot be held responsible for what I say/do).

Sometimes she is Fun Ibu, the Ibu that is very well-liked and loved. Sometimes she becomes Nasty Nagging Ibu, especially when Aidiin makes a boo-boo. Other times she'd imitate 'Melatah' Ibu. Yes, unfortunately I sometimes melatah (gosh, what's this word in English, eh?), especially when taken by surprise. But, but... don't we all melatah somehow? I hope it's not just me.



Sofea likes being in control, dominating the situation. When playing Teacher-Teacher (with her toys, cousins, friends or aunties/uncles, sometimes with me), she would automatically assume the Teacher role educating her would-be student(s).


"Then Carrie the Cat looks up to the sky..."


Before this, Aidiin would passively play along, obligingly eager to obey his sister's instructions. Now that he's older, more defensive and aware of his emotions and needs, their role-playings get more interesting and errr... challenging.

...

One time Sofea asked me if she and her brother could play "Bookshop". Being a bookstore junkie, I was very much terharu and flattered by this request. Sejuuuuk perut Ibu mengandung. Of course, of course, you can play "Bookshop" together.

Sofea was Ms Shopkeeper (obviously), and Aidiin was The Customer. I eavesdropped from the bedroom and watched them from afar.




Ms Shopkeeper, very politely, asked The Customer if he's interested in buying The Book. The Customer nodded and grinned.

Ms Shopkeeper walked The Customer to the payment counter. Sir, please pay RM5, she said. No response. Ms Shopkeeper repeated herself. The Customer pretended to be busy with his phone.

Ms Shopkeeper asked again. The Customer ignored her and wanted to walk run away with The Book.

The Customer shall be known as Difficult Customer from now on.

Ms Shopkeeper, attempting to remain graceful under pressure, insisted that Difficult Customer pay her or he would not get The Book, AT ALL.



Ms Shopkeeper would not give up without a fight. She tried to take money from Difficult Customer's pocket. Difficult Customer violently objected, screaming "Ta-naak, ta-naak! Aad-diin pu-nya, Aad-diin pu-nya, Aad-diin du-iiiit!" (It's mine, it's my money!).

Then Difficult Customer decided to throw a tantrum. He pushed things off the table and pulled Ms Shopkeeper's hair. Ms Shopkeeper started to cry. Difficult Customer stomped and stomped his foot but decided to cry as well. Uwaaaaaaa!!!

*sigh*


Sometimes, I would role-play too (tapi tengok 'mood' dulu lah). Take the above crisis for example.

What actually happened next...

Upon hearing sounds of wailing and screaming, Police Super Ibu rushed to the crime scene. Interrogations and interviews were conducted. She accused him, he accused her. She tried to push him, he tried to grab and pull her hair. More accusations, finger pointings and exchanges of "Ka-kak buu-aat" and "Taaaakkk... Adik yang buat" could be heard repeatedly.

Because Ms Shopkeeper and Difficult Customer had not played nice, Super Ibu immediately ordered both of them to the room to take their afternoon naps. Any 'bunyi' from either one of you and there'll be no TV-watching tonight, understand??

From their "Bookshop" playing, my kids learned about people skills, basic customer service -- 'Service with a Smile', how the customer is (not) always right, shopping skills and the value of money. And that Super Ibu has super veto power, ALWAYS. Nyeah nyeah nyeah.


Anyways...

I just wanted to tell you that role-playing is tonnes of fun. And not just for kids, but for adults, too. *wink*


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Let's Talk about Love

*giggles*

It wasn't really a date date, it was rather a time-off-to-unwind-after-a-long-and-stressful-two-weeks outing for a couple who's relationship as husband & wife turned 7 years old in November but they did not get to celebrate it earlier because they were miles apart and afterwards when they were back together they could not celebrate it either because their son got very sick.

A belated anniversary (mini) celebration it was. So... what did we do?

We went out to see a movie. Only the two of us. Just like old old old old times. It just goes to show that we don't go to the movies much.

famyBoy was ecstatic about the fact that he'd get to watch Casin0 Roy@le on the big screen. He was even humming the J@mes B0nd tune to himself. Err... hello? Who said we were going to watch Casin0 Roy@le?

Since the theme of the day was supposed to be romantika d'amour, we I opted for C1nta instead.
And a wise choice it turned out to be. I like I like I like. Even my husband (who originally was reluctant to watch), too, thought that is was good.

This entry is not a review of the movie, so you need not worry about any spoilers. And I promise that I will not elaborate on about the beautiful cinematography, the commendable performances by the cast, the memorable lines, the excellent plot and unfolding of storyline, or the emotions-evoking soundtrack.

I would recommend that you go watch it yourself.

Somehow or rather, you would get 'affected' by the going-ons in the characters lives. It may not be something you're experiencing right now, but it might be something you have gone through at some point in your lives. For me specifically, as a girl, a woman, a spouse/wife/parent, a sister, a daughter, the different scenarios and the different types of 'cinta' touched me in different ways.

I wouldn't say I cried buckets, but me being extra mushy (and overly-sensitive somehow) on that day had my tudung soaked wiping off hopelessly romantic tears. *blush* Yes, yes I am sappy like that. But I like being sappy about this movie.

There were some corny, cheesy parts (I would expect a certain amount of corny-ness lah since this *is* a movie about love to begin with) but I felt that they weren't overly done. Didn't think much of them, taklah sampai menyampah, you see.

I won't be mentioning that line spoken by Dato' R@him Raz@li's character here, alaaa... the one about "isteri bukanlah hakmilik, tetapi suatu anugerah..." tu or the voice-over by Nanu about the sacrifices you'd make out of love. I'd just like to point out that besides the cleverly written lines, this movie highlighted some taken-for-granteds and reminded me to not only cherish the people I love, but to also cherish the love (that gets displayed in so many ways) of the ones who love me.


Monday, December 04, 2006

Slowly but Surely

Thank you all for your well-wishes. Glad to inform you that Aidiin has recovered from the stomach flu, Alhamdulillah.

For the first two days since he was brought home from school and taken to see a doctor, he continued to throw up non-stop. His body didn't seem to respond to the medications. When I called the clinic on the 2nd day, the GP recommended that we take him to the hospital to be admitted for fear of dehydration. The doctor prepared the necessary documents and advised us not to wait till it's too late.

I cringed at the thought of the IV drips going into Aidiin's little veins. But I went ahead and packed whatever's needed to take to the hospital, praying in my heart that the admission was not necessary. famyBoy went to the clinic to pick up the letter from the GP.

Aidiin slept the whole time. I didn't feel like waking him up so I let him sleep but periodically checked on him in case his fever returned.

He woke up sometime in the afternoon asking for water. I fed him some, using a spoon. He asked for some more. I hesitated at first, in case he vomitted again, but he started crying, so I gave him a few more spoonfuls. Then he went back to sleep. No vomitting!! I was hopeful. This was definitely good progress.

famyBoy came home and asked if I was ready. All packed? Yes. Ready to go? No. No?? No.

We discussed and decided to wait a bit longer.

That evening Aidiin woke up asking for milk. I offered him some porridge instead. He gladly accepted.
One teaspoonful. Two teaspoonfuls. Three teaspoonfuls. Aa-diin nak lagi... I want some more, he said. Four teaspoonfuls. Five teaspoonfuls. Poor kid, he must be starving.

I tried not to feed him too much, so as not to upset his stomach. Every feed stayed in. No exorcist-like vomitting anymore, and that meant no hospitalization was needed. Phew!

I continued giving him his medicines and slowly introduced his normal diet. Eventually his appetite and energy returned. By the third day, he was his usual active self -- running, kicking, bugging and chasing after his big sister around the house. As for me, I was kept busy with the extra load of accumulated laundry (due to the throwing up episodes) that needed to be washed, hung to dry and folded.


Monday, November 27, 2006

Bad Timings

There is a major issue at work affecting two of the regional load-bal@ncing webservers. Since the actual (Sing@pore) administrator is on vacation for the whole week, I was designated to assist with the tasks that involved troubleshooting, solution-seeking, dealing with 3rd party vendors and liasing with the users/customers. Bummer. Leveraging of skills and resources they said. Hokay.

I was in the middle of a conference call with M1cros0ft, when my mobile started vibrating. It was a call from the school. Teacher Im@h called to inform that Aidiin had vomitted 4 times, wait... make that 5 times since this morning and now they've ran out of clean clothes for him to wear. 5 times?!! Apparently nothing the teachers gave him stayed in, not even water. My poor baby. My poor sick baby.

He threw up two more times in the car on the way to the clinic. The doctor diagnosed him as having stomach flu, as he was showing the major symptoms - continuous vomitting, fever, diarrhea. Judging from his cries, he probably has tummy aches too. My poor baby. My poor sick baby.

He hasn't eaten anything since we brought him home but vomitted twice regardless, spewing whatever bodily fluid left in his tiny body.

He is asleep right now. He looks so weak and helpless. He could barely open his eyes. My poor sick baby.

Oh little Darling, if only Ibu's butterfly kisses can magically take all the pain away and kill all the nasty rotaviruses, naughty noroviruses and the bad bad bad adenoviruses (hey... this virus has a name similar to yours!) type 40 or 41, sapoviruses, and astroviruses.

I have decided to keep Aidiin at home for the next couple of days. I feel bad about having to abandon work at times of crisis, but this is an emergency. I'll be there in spirit, I'd troubleshoot telepathically if I could. Why can't I get rid of this stupid guilty feeling?

I am thankful that Sofea is okay. At least she can still go to school.

But more importantly, I am thankful that famyBoy is back home.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Sometimes the (Idea) lightbulb simply refuses to turn on

You manage events, you organize seminars and parties, but when it comes to your own anniversary celebration, your mind just goes... b l a n k.

It's lunch time now. I'm taking a short break. Didn't feel like going out coz I've been sneezing like crazy since this morning... spreading my germy germs in the control room, the ladies room, the server room, the shoe area, the corridor, the document cabinets. Ugh. Itchy+runny nose and all. Double ugh.

Used up two "Pocket Packs" of Kleenex in an hour. I probably need to drop by the pharmacy this evening to stock up on my tissue paper supply.

It is very tempting to apply for sick leave, especially when you *are* sick to begin with. But with the way things are going on at the office these past weeks, I'd rather force my sick self to come to work instead of lying in bed resting. With the almost due deadlines, a workday missed would seem like a week. The catching up afterwards will be worse than non-stop sneezing and runny+itchy nose. Therefore, selagi ada daya, akan kugagahi jua.

Anyways, I guess with famyBoy being offshore till Sunday, I actually have about a week to plan/think about our belated anniversary celebration. What to get him for a gift, what we could do, where we should go etc etc etc. You know... how we should celebrate our 7th anniversary.

...

The Question is: How should we celebrate our 7th anniversary???

*garu kepala*


Sunday, November 19, 2006

Seven Years Have Gone By

It sucks being alone on your wedding anniversary... it just does. Seriously.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Can I Get a Fast Forward, please?

I'm not your superwoman...
I'm not the kind of girl that you can let down
And think that everything's okay
Boy, I am only human...


At work, these last two months are normally the busiest times of the year. Year end deadlines-lah, fiscal closing-lah, freeze periods-lah, urgent updates and security patches-lah. Everyone needs everything ready before so-n-so workweek, everyone claims his/her request(s) should be the priority. How-lah like that? Makcik is getting chest pains already.

It's scary, y'know? Especially when you don't feel like doing a n y t h i n g (but procrastinate instead), despite the accumulating To-Do(s). Yes, yes, I'm in denial. *big sigh*

So... if you don't see me hopping my way to your blogs and/or responding to your comments in a timely manner, you know why lah. Never ever meant to neglect you folks. But I know you all ni a very very understanding bunch, kan? That's why-lah I saaaaayang you all. *hugs*

And my updates will be sporadic too, I guess.

I know I shouldn't be making excuses bringing home issues to work, and vice versa. But my other half is out of town for at least the next 10 days or so. Now I don't have anyone to go home to and whine about work. I never expected him to reduce the workload but it's good to know that he's there to attentively listen (even if he was just pretending to). My personal shrink cum punching bag cum bantal peluk (bolster).

On top of that, nowadays my sensibilities have been overcome by paranoia. Especially after watching news about helicopters crashing and whatnot. I realize it's all Allah's will, qada' and qadar, ajal-maut di tangan Tuhan, and it's his rezeki yang sudah tertulis, but I *still* am entitled to worry, no?? Accidents do happen. Although lately I found out that more people tend to die (young) due to heart attacks. Na'uzubillah.

I miss him already.

My parents are staying over during famyBoy's absence. It's good to have company although it isn't really necessary. I already foresee potential 'differences in opinion' with my mom regarding my cooking and my home management & decor methods but I'm thankful for their presence nonetheless. At least the kids will not have to listen to me nag often. It's not their fault, really, it's all mine. I just have to find some way/place to let it all out. And they, being the precious darlings that they are, just happened to know which switches to trigger.

Without their Ayah around, the kids automatically become my shrinks cum personal assistants cum consultants cum bantal peluk bucuk(s). Not punching bags-lah of course, satgi kena tuduh domestic violence and child abuse pulak, lagi haru.

Did I tell you I miss him already, already?



Monday, October 30, 2006

Di hari mulia ini, kususun sepuluh jari...

Mari Berpantun di Aidil Fitri



Tinggi sungguh terbang si helang
Akhirnya hinggap di pohon jati
1 Syawal kini menjelang
Ramadhan yang lalu moga diberkati.



Malam raya main bunga api
Dentuman mercun kuat macam bom
Di pagi raya cantik berseri
Menarik tertarik dan memang da bomb!

Budak-budak bermain getah
Bermain getah di tengah laman
Aidil Fitri disambut meriah
Ketupat dan lemang jadi habuan.

Biarpun di kampung mahupun di pekan
Biskut raya semestinya terhidang
Ziarah-menziarahi tanda ingatan
Sanak saudara tersenyum riang.




Baju raya kasut raya
Duit raya jangan dilupa
Aidil Fitri hari mulia
Maaf dipohon sesama kita.





Salam Aidilfitri, Maaf Zahir Batin
and Eid Mubarak to all!!
:)



Monday, October 09, 2006

Ideal Ideas

I don't normally favor being caught off-guard with definition questions. Especially when the questions originate from my forever-inquisitive daughter. On my lucky days, it would be something quite straightforward like "what is a light bulb?" or "what is oyster sauce?". Things that I can find around the house and just point to and she'll instantly know what they are/mean.

On some days it would be something intangible and/or abstract.

hi Ibu, what is Idea?

You mean an idea?

No Ibu, I meant Idea. What is idea?


*clears throat*
Well, to have "an" idea is to have a thought or a notion in your head. It could be a plan, a principle, a feeling or a mental image. It is something formulated in your mind...



Ok, ok, ok. Of course I didn't answer her that way. The truth is I was stumped for a while, trying to find the appropriate words. The only thing that came to my mind was the image of a mentol (light bulb) being switched on.

Ibu?? Ibu??

I gave her a somewhat lengthy explanation of 'idea' in M@lay with some examples to support, but I'll only write a summarized English version here. I don't sound stupid when I speak M@lay, but I also don't want to sound too clever either. heh heh. I am just too lazy to type it all out in Bah@sa Mel@yu and then translate it for the purpose of this entry.

Anyways...

Urm... okay, it's like this. Say, you have a problem, which initially, you don't know how to fix, so you try to figure out different ways to resolve it. You sit down and think, think really really hard. Then suddenly, the (possible) solution comes to mind. You now know how to fix the problem. That is what we call an idea.

*appears to be digesting the new bits of information*


But, but... you don't always need to have a problem before you get an idea. Sometimes ideas just appear in your mind. You know, some things that you think of. Usually you write them down so you won't forget later.


*nods head*
Ohhhh... okay!! I know, I know! And she sped off happily.




The next day I found this stuck on the wall of our family hall.


Sofea's remark: Look Ibu, I have an idea. It's you!!


I then discovered many, many other 'ideas' of hers around the house. In the bedrooms, in the kitchen, on the railing of the stairs, on the cabinets, on the fridge, even on the laundry basket and on the bathroom door.



I don't know if I have succeeded in explaining the idea of having an idea to her, and I wonder if she grasped the concept of having ideas correctly.

I have no idea where she got the post-its from, but she seemed to have a pretty good idea of how they (the post-its) are supposed to be used. heh.


Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Ogos adalah Bulan Orang Kawin...

... which literally means August was the month of Weddings.

Firstly, congratulations to the lovey-dovey blogging newly-weds Berry Bear and Diah!! :) *throws confetti everywhere*





As mentioned before, Sofea and Aidiin's Sports Day took place on Sunday, August 27th. On this same date, while the parents and teachers cheered for the kiddos, my cousin and her fiance were married. I had to miss the akad nikah (matrimonial) ceremony (so no pictures) but I got to attend the dinner reception on the same night.

We left for JayBee after the school sports and arrived there about an hour before the reception. Letih, wa cakap lu.

My mom kept calling my mobile, asking about our whereabouts once I sms-ed her that we've just crossed the Joh0r state border. Every 10-15 mins or so.

Where are you?

Errr... Machap.

Where?

Machaaaap.

Bila boleh sampai? Nabila tunggu Sofea, nak practice walking down the aisle. (When can you get here? Nabila is waiting for Sofea. They want to rehearse walking down the aisle.)

Tak tau lah berapa lama lagi. Kereta banyak. (Can't really say, there are a lot of cars on the road.)

Where are you now?

Still Machap, no no wait... Simpang Renggam.

Berapa lama nak sampai? (How long will it take you to get here?)

45 mins kot. (About 45 mins)

*pause*
Ok, NOW where are you?

*rolleyes*


We managed to arrive at the hotel (the Z0n Reg3ncy H0tel by the sea) about an hour before the reception. Sian Kakak, tak sempat nak practice baling-baling bunga. Checked in, dragged our bags to our room, freshened up, jamak-ed Maghrib+Isya' prayers, changed into our "reception" attires, and headed straight to the grand ballroom.

Sofea and her (second) cousin Nabila were the flower girls, dressed in girly-girly pink attires.



I wasn't in my usual take-picture-of-everything self that night due to an unexpected headache cum migraine, which initially started about half-way through the journey from KL to JayBee and refused to go away despite the berbiji-biji Panadol that I'd consumed.
Naturally, famyBoy became my designated photographer for the night. But since he was also the designated Aidiin-chaser for the night, he was not able to take as many pictures as I would've wanted him to take.


Selamat Pengantin Baru and Congratulations to the bagaikan pinang dibelah dua newly-weds MnR. Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness and lurrrrve... :)

Judging from my cousin's (the bride) big sigh of relief during one of our conversations, I could tell that both she and her husband were glad that people have stopped asking them about their Special Day.
Little did they know that they now need to start preparing themselves for the cepumas questions pertaining to the expected arrival of their first bundle of joy. hee hee hee.

More pictures available in my multiply album.





The weekend before that, on August 19th, we attended another wedding ceremony (the bride is famyBoy's cousin) in Sel@ma, Kedah. This is the same wedding that Ondeonde and her family attended.

We were supposed to leave for Kedah on Friday night but my bro-in-law had to work really late, so we decided to travel on Saturday morning itself. We missed this akad nikah too, unfortunately, because it was carried out on Friday afternoon and we were only scheduled to arrive there on Saturday.

We missed the earlier part of the kenduri because we only arrived in Sel@ma at about 3:00 PM (traffic maaaa.... cuti sekolah summore), so we missed the earlier parts of the ceremony - the kompang playings, the groom's arrival and the bride's shy-shy smile when she greeted her husband. Ondeonde wrote a lengthy piece about the ceremonious event and took lotsa pictures so you can view them in her multiply site. If you look carefully, you might even find me in her album somewhere. ;)

Like any kenduri or family gathering, food was in abundance. The kids (cousins (1st, 2nd, 3rd), nieces and nephews), when gathered together, became instant buddies and oblivious to their surroundings.




Congratulations to Dayah and her husband. Semoga berbahagia hingga ke anak cucu cicit... (apa lagi lepas cicit?) :)

We left Sel@ma with full tummies and good memories.

More pictures here.


Friday, September 08, 2006

Parrot, Parrot, 1 2 3!!!

The theme for this year's Sports Day was "Kemerdekaan dan Keamanan Palestin" (Independence and Peace for P@lestine).

When I first read the memo given by the teacher, I was confused. The "Kemerdekaan" was supposed to be in conjunction with M@laysia'a 31 August celebrations (you know, happy happy joy joy kinda thing), and "Keamanan Palestin" is, well, a whole different thing altogether. Somewhat conflicting, no?
Checked with one of the teachers and was told that my interpretation was in fact, correct. Apparently I was not the only parent who enquired about it. heh heh.

Anyways...
All parents received the memo about 4 days before the event. Parents were encouraged to get together-gether to prepare props or costumes for the children, based on the theme, so that the kids could wear them during the Sports Day Parade.

This year, the teams were divided based on names of birds - Parrot, Eagle, Kingfisher and Peacock, which represented teams Yellow, Green, Blue and Red, respectively.



Both Sofea and Aidiin were members of rumah (team) Parrot. So, naturally, it would be advisable to come up with costumes and props that fit nicely with their uniforms: white t-shirts with yellow cuffs(?) around the collars and sleeves, and yellow pants. It was decided that the kids will be dressed up as Umbrella Cockatoos (from the parrot family), mainly white, but with striking yellow crests. With the help of another mom and her friend, the mak-mak Parrot (Parrot mommies) came up with 13 sets of costumes made of corrugated cardboards. Each set consisted of a headgear (which is the bird's head and beak attached to a white cap) and a pair of wings.


Not bad, eh? ;)

I used party streamers (in red, blue, yellow and white) to make J@lur Gemilang-ish necklaces for the kids to wear around their necks. As an added personal touch, we had the kids wear white belts with the words "AMAN PALEST1N" printed on them.

All the kids marched to the "Tanggal TigaPuluhSatu, Bulan Lapan LimaPuluhTujuh" tune in conjunction with August being Merdeka (Independence) month for Mal@ysia, while the judges evaluated the costumes.
I was the designated spokeperson who had to explain why team Parrot kids looked the way they did, and I came up with this: We chose umbrella cockatoos because they are white; to represent pure, freedom, peace. The necklaces the children are wearing represent our beloved country because they are the colors on our J@lur Gemil@ng (Mal@ysian flag). On the white belts, the words "AMAN PALEST1N" (Peace for P@lestine) are printed, which is self-explanatory. These children symbolize little birds of freedom flown all over the world, representing Mal@ysia, carrying the "Peace for P@lestine" message across the globe...
Pretty convincing, imho, because we won 1st prize for the costumes. ;)

The event this year is much more relaxed and 'controlled' because the principal decided to have it conducted in a dewan (hall) due to the current weather conditions -- too hot, rainy and/or sometimes a bit hazy. The hall itself has central air-conditioning so that helped make the environment more pleasant overall. Taklah masam berlemoih sangat.

I've seen this slideshow thingy at some other blogs and thought that it was really cool, so I decided to try it out myself. Check this out:



I kept checking my watch throughout the event coz we were supposed to drive to JayBee that very same afternoon to attend my cousin's wedding. All in all, the event ended around 1:30 PM (inclusive of lunch) and we rushed home immediately. Got the kids bathed and then famyBoy and I performed our prayers. Quickly stuffed our bags into the car... by then, the time was almost 3:00 PM.

The kids fell asleep when we drove past the USJ toll exit. I tried to stay awake but I was too sleepy and tired so I took many short naps while famyBoy drove all the way to JayBee.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Warkah Buat Kakak

Dearest Kakak,

Ibu nak cakap Sorry kat Kakak sebab Ibu marah Kakak semalam. Ibu tengking-tengking Kakak, suara Ibu jadi sungguh nyaring, Ibu rasa satu Jalan Ser@mbi boleh dengar. Ibu perasan 'pitching' Ibu semua lari, tapi penuh dengan 'feel'. Berdesing telinga Kakak, kan?

Tapi apa yang Kakak buat semalam tu sungguh unbelievable. Ibu tak tau macam mana nak deal with Kakak punya misbehavior tu. Ibu tak faham, sungguh. Dah berkali-kali Ibu ngan Ayah bagi tau Kakak, masa Ibu dengan Ayah tengah solat "Jangan Kacau! Jangan buat bising!" Tapi Kakak macam tak ingat semua tu semalam. Kakak sakat Adik. Padahal Adik tak kacau Kakak pun. Tapi Kakak sengaja bagi dia nangis terjerit-jerit macam tu. Kakak bukan tak tau Adik tu kememeh lagi dramatic. Biarlah dia amik sejadah kecik tu, dia nak ikut Ibu dengan Ayah solat sekali. Biarkanlah dia dengan chee chee chot-nya. Kakak kan tengah tengok B0b the Builder masa tu.

Ibu ngan Ayah baru je start solat, Kakak lari masuk dengan sejadah kecik tu, with Adik trailing behind in tears and screaming "Aaaddiin nak, Aaaddin nak ma-yang!". Kakak tease dia, Kakak sengaja angkat sejadah tu tinggi-tinggi sebab Kakak tau Adik tak sampai nak capai. Kakak panjat atas katil Ibu so that Kakak lagiiiii tinggi dari Adik. Bila Adik panjat atas katil Ibu, Kakak lompat turun bawah. Kakak acah-acah dia, nak bagi, tak nak bagi. Not nice lah Kakak buat camtu. Kesian Adik dok nangis-nangis sampai basah lencun muka ngan pyjama dia dengan air mata, dengan peluh, dengan hingus, dengan air liur. Macam kena rabies je Adik, bila mulut dia berbubble-bubbles camtu.

Bila Adik finally caught up with Kakak, Kakak stop pulak sebelah Ibu (masa Ibu tengah sujud, trying to keep up with Ayah). Lepas tu Kakak main tarik-tarik rebut sejadah ngan Adik. Sampai terlanggar Ibu pun ada. Macam mana Ibu nak concentrate solat? Bukankah naughty tu? Adik punya volume dahlah se-maximum mungkin. Kakak pun boleh tahan jugak kuatnya dok tergelak-gelak. Kakak still nak torment Adik lagi. Sampai last-last dia batuk-batuk, and finally dia muntah. Bukan sikit. Macam exorcist ala Linda Blair tu Adik muntah. Terpancut kena sejadah Ibu ngan Ayah sekali. Kain Ayah pun kena sikit. Masa tu Kakak baru nak panic. Masa Ayah tengah baca tahiyat akhir Kakak panggil-panggil Ayah-Ibu, kata "Adik muntah, Adik muntah!" Dah terlambat dah tu.

Lepas Ayah-Ibu habis solat, Ayah marah Kakak. Adik still dok nangis. Kakak diam. Ibu try to control Ibu punya anger, tapi Ibu tak boleh. Sebab apa yang Kakak buat memang tak masuk akal.

Masa Ayah bawak Adik pergi toilet, nak basuh muka, tukar baju, Ibu start pok-pek-pok-pek lepas Ibu simpan telekung Ibu. Kakak macam tak dengar, Ibu lagi naik angin. Blood Ibu semua go upstairs. Ibu piat telinga Kakak sebab Kakak tak dengar apa Ibu cakap. Ibu babap bahu kanan Kakak. Kakak nangis sebab Ibu dah start naik suara. Ibu nak nangis juga, tapi sebab Ibu terlalu marah dan gerammmm.

As punishment, Ibu suruh Kakak amik tisu, and start to lap muntah Adik tu. Kakak nangis sebab taknak lap. Kakak buat muka kesian. Ibu tak kira, Ibu paksa jugak. Last-last Kakak buat jugak. Amik tisu, lap-lap-lap kawasan lantai bilik yang kena muntah Adik tu. Ibu berat hati sangat masa tu, kalau ikutkan hati Ibu nak suruh Kakak duduk luar je, biar Ayah/Ibu bersihkan, tapi Ibu nak Kakak learn your lesson. Ibu keraskan hati, Ayah pun berdiri tengok je. Ibu rasa Ayah pun terkejut Ibu naik angin semalam. Normally Ibu mulut je bising, tapi semalam Ibu was exceptionally strict. Ayah pun tak berani cakap apa-apa. Lepas dah clear sikit kawasan muntah tu, Ayah suruh Kakak basuh tangan, brush teeth, shi-shi. Then Kakak kena duduk kat chair, stare at the curtains. 'Goal' Ibu-Ayah was so that Kakak take time to think about your actions, think about the consequences. Ibu tak tau if that 'goal' was achieved sebab masa tu Ibu bawak turun all the sejadah, kain yang kena muntah tu nak cuci and masuk washing machine, and Ayah was mopping the muntah area.

By the time Ibu naik, Kakak dah nak tido. Ibu was still too upset ngan Kakak, tak boleh nak cakap ngan Kakak punya subconscious masa Kakak half asleep.

Pagi ni Ibu tengok Kakak macam biasa je... your usual chirpy, cheery self. Ibu jugak yang masih rasa terrible terrible inside. Guilty toksah cakap laa. Ibu tak tau kalau Kakak dah lupa pasal peristiwa semalam. Ibu tak sempat nak slow talk sebab kita semua rushing pagi-pagi, Ibu+Ayah nak pegi work, Kakak+Adik nak pegi school. Ibu tak tau macam mana nak get through to Kakak sometimes. Maybe Ibu kena gi cari and baca buku "Personality Plus (for Parents)" tu, or that other book yang Ibu nampak hari tu "How to Talk so Kids Will Listen and How to Listen So Kids Will Talk". Sometimes Ibu just mati akal. Time Ibu marah, tak teringat dah approach apa yang patut Ibu buat, dari buku-buku parenting yang Ibu pernah baca before this.

Kakak,
Rest-assured Ibu sayang Kakak sangat-sangat. Memang Ibu marah semalam, tarik telinga and/or tarik tangan, tapi tak bermakna Ibu sayang Kakak any lesser. Ibu frustrated sebab Kakak dah big girl, tapi Kakak buat perangai naughty macam tu. Most probably malam ni, lepas makan, settled semua benda, before bed, Ibu akan slow talk dengan Kakak. OK? Maybe Kakak boleh tolong explain kat Ibu why you acted the way you did.

Again, Ibu nak cakap Sorry kat Kakak pasal semalam.

Much Love,
Ibu



Tuesday, August 15, 2006

I should start worrying about the terrible two(s) now, shouldn't I?

Aidiin turned two years old yesterday, August 14, 2006. My baby is two!!

I still have trouble remembering the fact that I went on maternity leave two years ago. It still feels like it has only been a year. Maybe because time flies by too fast nowadays. But most probably because I am still carrying the access weight from my last two pregnancies after all these years.

Currently, Aidiin is desperate to be independent; may it be during feeding time, brushing his teeth, undressing and dressing up (diaper-wearing too!), combing his hair, switching on the TV or lampshade, changing channels using the remote, putting in or ejecting the DVD or even pouring water from a bottle into a cup. Always "Aad-diin nak se-li-li" (Aidiin nak sendiri -- I want to do it myself). He is surprisingly meticulous, especially when maneuvering food into his mouth with a spoon or fork. His elder sister would end up having more bits of food spilt or dropped around her and/or on the floor. Sofeeeeaaaaaa!!!

I (quickly) learned that he should never be left alone with a cup filled with liquid. Puddles, puddles everywhere. Chocolatey-brown puddles, strawberry-pink puddles, milk-white puddles. And that the bathroom door should never never be left ajar. Puddles, more puddles, splishes, splashes, sploshes everywhere and a drenched-from-head-to-toe little boy.

Aidiin gave me the opportunity to experience the joys of exclusively breastfeeding, up till he turned 14 months old. He decided to wean himself off somehow, much to my dismay. It was quite a struggle for me at first; the exclusive breastfeeding, pumping at work, breastfeeding during Ramadhan, sleep-deprivation, engorgement and sore/cracked nipples. But my son made it impossible for me to quit as he showed me what a rewarding journey it turned out to be. He made me see that if I wanted something really badly, I would/could do whatever it takes to make it work. I was amazed at myself actually and I have him (and Allah SWT) to thank for that.

I learned a lot from my accident-prone hero these past two years than I ever did in my lifetime. Some lessons were humorous, but unfortunately most were traumatic ones.
He freaked me out with his first encounter with the iron.
He taught me perseverance and patience when he was hospitalized for pneumonia.
He demonstrated to me how hard his head was/is.
He almost gave me a heart attack when he fell down the stairs on Eid-ul-Adha earlier this year.
And if that was not enough, he tested me again (this time with his sister's help) when his left eardrum got punctured.

Enough, enough. No more surprises, please.

Despite the fact that I was in (painful) labour for 30 hours before Aidiin decided to come out and see the world, I have no regrets. Except for one thing though. I thought he would be a lefty like me, but he was only a lefthander for the first 10 months of his life. Hmmm.... maybe I should start considering making another potential lefthander... *grin*

Anyways...

HAPPY 2nd BIRTHDAY, AiDiiN!!!

Many many many Hugs and Kisses from Ibu, Ayah & Kakak.




A big boy he is now, was an adik-adik toddler(s) and very soon a preschooler.

But in my eyes, he is still a baby. And I am more than thankful that he is mine.


Read also: Aidiin - a year ago

** 2nd Birthday bday card image taken from: http://www.systemaxonline.com


Friday, July 21, 2006

Remedies

Q: What's worse than having a sick and whiny child to care for?...
...
...

A: Having TWO sick and whiny children to care for on your own while your husband is away on an outstation trip! That's what.

*sigh*

Both Sofea and Aidiin had fever and were not sent to school.

In addition to the doctor-prescribed medications, I decided to include some get-well-soon-quickly remedies of my own.



For lunch, I served them pasta in alphabet soup, as an alternative to (the usual) chicken porridge. For dessert, they get to devour 2-in-1 chocolate & vanilla ice-cream in a cup.



As Ibu's TLC bonus, I read and reread (and then made to re-reread with actions) Mommy's Best Kisses to them. To return the favor, they agreed to take their naps (Thank God!). I took this golden opportunity to complete the house chores. Laundry, dishes, more laundry, clearing up scattered-everywhere books, puzzles and toys.



For late afternoon cum evening entertainment they were given the luxury of watching Dora the Explorer VCDs marathon. Because Ibu ran out of ideas and energy to keep them entertained.



It was not a surprise to me that they enjoyed this treat the most.

...

I think the truth is they miss their Dad. I gotta admit, I miss him terribly too. :(


Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Four Weddings, a Sports Day and a Party

Three couples I know are tying the knot next month. First, there's the lovey-dovey couple (yayyy!! for Berrybear & Diah). Then famyBoy's cousin is getting married in Ked@h. Then my cousin's wedding ceremony in JayBee. Oh and Ms. S1ti will also be marrying her D@tuk boyfriend.
So, make that four couples I know are tying the knot next month. heh heh.

I was invited to three out of the four weddings, but I'll only be able to attend two. One is too far away in Dum@i... so unless Bear & Diah sponsor our plane tickets there, I doubt we'd be able to make it. ;)
The other one is obviously only for VVIPs, VIPs, royalty (?), celebrities, reporters and such, and unless I am a biiiiiiig fan who'd be willing to drive up to Pah@ng for the other wedding reception in S1ti's hometown in September, I'd have to miss that one too. And plus, they'd probably broadcast the event on TV, and I'd rather read all about it from the papers. Guaranteed to make the headlines punya lah.

Sofea's school's Sports Day is also happening in August, which unfortunately will coincide with my cousin's doa selamat (prayers) and akad nikah (the matrimony) ceremony. So, we can only attend the dinner reception, and hopefully I get to watch the earlier happenings on video.

InsyaAllah, a 2-in-1 siblings birthday party will also be held in August, to (belated-ly) celebrate Sofea's turning 5 and Aidiin's going-to-be 2. I have nothing planned out yet so far, but most probably it will involve two birthday cakes and 2-in-1 party favors. Since the school is relocating early August, I hope the teachers wouldn't mind having a mini party like the one we had for Sofea last year, only this year it'll be at the new premises. Hmmm... maybe I should talk to the school's principal first.

Good thing there are no other major events scheduled to take place next month too, like the previous seminar, for instance. And luckily, I've gotten that migration project out of the way. *phew*

Oh well, it looks like it's gonna be a very busy August... but at least I can look forward to not being in auto-pilot mode next month. *winks at ondeonde*


Friday, July 14, 2006

Hello K1tty

Ooohhh yes, we finally brought the new kitty home.

Everyone, say Hello to H@rry*** the cat.



I told you he's tall, dark and handsome, didn't I? *wink*

A few weeks back, famyBoy and I went shopping for additional food and water containers, a litterbox, a collar and a shiny new nametag. At the pet store, famyBoy grabbed the first food dish his arms could reach. The dish had a reddish-pinkish shade.

Pick another one-lah.
Why?
Coz it's pink.
So???

We're buying for a boy, ok? Get the blue one, please.
*rolleyes*


I also bought a grooming comb because H@rry inherited the long thick, flowy coat from his persian parent (his Dad, I think) and his sleek, silky hair needed brushing at least every other day.

Before bringing him home for the first time, we brought H@rry to the vet for a thorough medical checkup, which included a blood test, a kidney profile test and liver checkup. During his 2nd visit he was given his feline leukaemia vaccination and deworming treatment. The doctor also gave him a flea bath and did his nails, i.e. H@rry's nails were cleaned and trimmed. Sheesh... even *I* don't get pedicures, what more to pamper myself at a spa.

For an entire week at home, I had to apply eardrops and clean his ears daily because the doctor found some traces of earmites. Harmless, but good to get rid off from the beginning. I saw that the mites were gone by the 3rd day (the insides of his ears looked clean unlike previously where there were bits of black stuff) but I continued applying the drops anyways in case they came back.

H@rry has a charming personality; he is friendly, playful, pretty laid-back and calm. Memang sesuwai buat menantu dia ni. He enjoys having Sofea and Aidiin fuss over him and sometimes he'd chase them around the house trying to catch and grab at their ankles and they'd be giggling and shrieking in delight.

For the time being, the vet advised not to keep H@rry together with my other cat until he (H@rry) has completed his series of vaccinations. So for now H@rry and M1sha can only main-main mata (steal looks at each other) from their respective cages.

It surely feels like I have officially adopted a 'son'.


***Note: H@rry's previous owners have daughters who are big fans of H@rry P0+ter, hence the name. The other cats in his family were named P0+ter and R0n.


Friday, June 30, 2006

As if my hands are not full already...

A friend wanted give away her 10 months old cat and asked if I was interested to take him... and I'd said Yes!!

Tak pasal-pasal kan? All these while I complain about so much to do, and already I've got so many things to take care of, bla bla de bla... *sigh*

...

If you have been reading my older entries in the other blog, you'd know that I already have a cat at home.

Anyways, several reasons made me decide to proceed with the idea. The main reason was I felt guilty for not really taking care of my (existing) cat M1sha lately. I can tell that she is lonely. We were very close, you see. I've had her since 1996. She slept with me on my bed, she entertained me and my roommate with her kitty antics, she gave me massages before I go to sleep and woke me up in the mornings so that I didn't skip miss my early lectures. In return, I ensured that she got enough food, water and love. Not only that, I also assumed the position of the sanitary engineer who cleaned her litterbox using that scooping thingy everyday and made sure she had a clean, odor-free, fresh llitterbox to do her business. M1sha and I travelled across the globe on a 30 hours flight when I graduated and returned home to M@lays1a in 1997.

When I got married and was pregnant with Sofea I was still staying at my parents' since famyBoy was working in another state and his job required him to be outstation most of the time. We were weekends husband-wife-lovers. Later, he got another job that's in-state, and after Sofea was born, right after pantang (confinement), we moved out and found our own place. I left M1sha at my parents' since the place we were renting then was a small apartment that had limited space. Moreover Sofea was still a baby. As for me, I was learning to be a fulltime wife and working mom.

We took M1sha with us when we moved into our own (current) house. Still trying to juggle between work, home and family, I did not really spend much quality time with my cat. Then I got pregnant with Aidiin, and even lesser time was spent with her. famyBoy took over the cat care responsibilities until Aidiin was born. Actually he is still helping out till now (thank you, Love). My kids have become my highest priority (after my husband) and M1sha was somewhat neglected. *guilty*

With the current lifestyle and work/family demands, we are normally not home during the daytime on weekdays, and only return late in the evenings. With the kids, household chores and whatnot, I am not left with much time nor energy to give my cat the TLC she needs. Our weekends are normally spent visiting the kids' grandparents, or running errands n stuff. Very limited cat-human quality moments.

M1sha is often left alone at home, mostly in her cage. I wasn't really keen on having her caged but I worry about her safety if we let her loose. Wild/stray dogs, other 'gangster' cats, crazy human drivers, non-hygienic food. pssst... zan, confirm bukan kucing kiter yang berak kat laman awak, tau.
Plus I didn't want her to mix with the wrong (cat) crowd and get knocked up by some random alley cat. Yes, I'm picky about who she befriends and hangs out with, and that's the reason she's still a virgin till now. *guilty some more*

You might wonder why I never considered taking in another cat a long time ago. I did, I did. But the two (or was it three?) male cats DIED before I could confirm with their respective owners. Seriously. Y'know, for an animal that has nine lives, theirs were used up rather quickly.

Lately I have learned to juggle better (although still struggling) between kids, home, work, life... so now I want to make things right (if I could).

I feel really bad about abandoning M1sha the last few years.

I hope she will forgive me when she sees the tall, dark and handsome stud that I'm bringing home to her. Sudah diperiksa later belakangnya... memang dari keturunan yang baik-baik.

[edit]
I wondered if cats M1sha's age have already begun menopause, but was relieved(?) to learn that unlike humans, female cats remain fertile throughout their lives.
[/edit]


Thursday, June 22, 2006

Picture (not so) Perfect

The many attempts at taking a passport-sized picture of Aidiin...






The finished product... nganga pun nganga lah.



 

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