Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wee hours rambling...

It's 4:25a.m now, and here I am wide awake - for two reasons.

Firstly - Ayah was woken up by a phonecall from Sri Ko*a Medical Centre, Klang just over an hour ago, and he had to leave immediately to attend to an emergency heart attack case. He left within 15 minutes of the call - after taking a quick shower to freshen up and gulping down a mug of Ali Ca*e coffee I made him - as an added measure to make sure he stays wide awake and alert on the road at this hour of the night/morning.

He has brought along his work attire with him, just in case his Klang patient needs an emergency angioplasty which would probably, give and take, take 2 hours to complete, after which it would already be time for Ayah to go to TMC for his ward round and later – clinic.

It has become a norm for Ayah to either come back VERY late and/or being called in the middle of the night to attend to his patients for the past 6 months or so. The reason being - he is now covering four hospitals. On top of TMC where he is a Resident Physician and Cardiologist, he's also a Visiting Consultant at 3 other hospitals - Col*mbi* As*a (Puchong), Ass*nta Hospital (PJ) AND Sri Ko*a MC (Klang). He has also been accredited to practise at Su*way MC, but, as it is, he has his hands full with the said four hospitals and has yet to start his sessions at Su*way.

So, you can just imagine the amount of to-ing and fro-ing he has to do on some days if he has patients to see at ALL four hospitals! It's just like you doing your current job, but, four times more at four different offices spread out at four different locations. Almost everyday.

Attending to his scheduled clinics and ward rounds at these hospitals is not much of a problem, as Zaidy, can drive him around. It's answering to emergency cases like this morning that is making his life topsy turvy now (and my life, too, for that matter!) The calls could lead to him going to Kota Damansara (which is not too bad), or Puchong, or PJ, or even Klang at godforsaken hours, like this morning.

But, Ayah did warn me early last year when he was leaving PP*M to go private that the first couple of years would be hell as he would have to establish himself in the private practice first and get his patients base in a few hospitals as he would not be able to survive just on income coming from one source. And true enough, he has to do just that now.

Syukur alhamdulillah, his earnings since leaving the government hospital has been pretty steady without too much fluctuations between the months, but to guarantee that, he has to work twice as hard as when he was in PP*M. (and as it was, he was already working like 14-18 hours a day then! But, it wasn't too bad then as he was only covering PP*M, and was not running here and there between four hospitals like now!)

The kids and I have gotten so used to Ayah's crazy schedule now, and what little time we have with him would be maximized with whatever family outings we could go on.

It has not been easy for both parties – Ayah, and me and the kids. But, over the years, things have become relatively easi-ER.

I know a lot of people out there are thinking just how on earth does he do that? And, maybe a LOT MORE are probably thinking – “How on earth does she know that his coming home late everyday IS because he’s attending to his patients? How on earth will she know if he is in fact up to no good with some other woman?!”

Well, I don't, and I probably won't know.

I’d be lying if I were to say that these thoughts had never crossed my mind – especially in the early years of being married. Hell, I have to admit that as recent as maybe 5-6 years ago I still had doubts about that!

But, like all couples, we would have our arguments, and more often that not, they were always because of him not spending as much time as I wanted him to with the kids, and me doubting if he was really at work during all those long hours he was not home. Hati perempuan, kan…?

But, Syukur Alhamdulillah… things are so much better in that department now. I guess we grew up… Or rather, I grew up.

I guess, as long as I focus on fulfilling my duties as his wife well, and as long as I bersangka baik with him, and trust him with all my heart, and as long as I appreciate just how hard he’s working to provide for the family, and as long as (and I make sure he does! Hehehe…) he appreciates the sarifices the kids and I also have to make over the years for him, insya Allah, we will be okay. In fact, MORE than okay :)

It is strange, but, I do find our relationship has reached another level whereby there are better understanding and tolerance between us, since Ayah went private, even though as mentioned, he is so, so much busier now.

I now see and focus on how hard he works for the family, rather than on how little time he spends with us. BIG difference there.

And apart from focusing on how hard it was for him to be where he is now, I think Ayah now also focuses on how hard it was for me and the kids to go through life with him not being around for most of the time, and I know that he appreciates that fact.

Experiencing life as a doctor, and even more so, as a cardiologist, AND seeing how it has affected us as a family, Ayah is forever trying to discourage the kids to follow his footsteps. His latest attempt at this was made last weekend when he had to give a talk to a group of students aspiring to become doctors, whereby he had dragged the whole family to listen to his talk which covered his journey to becoming a doctor and what he had to give up along the way until now.

Listening to him that day had made me realize that I should have appreciated him more as a very good and responsible husband and father all these years and should have given him 200% more support than I had given him all this while. I should have given him more credits…

Anyway, I don’t think he did a good job at discouraging the kids to do medicine – cardiology in particular, as I think Hasya is more determined to become a cardiologist now after listening to her Ayah’s talk!

In a way, I guess it is not fair for us to discourage the kids to become doctors, and even more so - cardiologists. So, we have agreed that we will not discourage them, but, at the same time, we will not ACTIVELY encourage them to follow their Ayah’s path. We have gone through the trials and tribulations as a family in medical life conundrums - and we know that not everyone will be able to go through it like we did/do.

However, if Allah SWT has determined their paths to be so, then we as parents will embrace it whole-heartedly, and will support them and their families all the way, insya Allah…

So, THAT was one of the reasons why I’m still wide awake at this hour – being woken up by the emergency call for Ayah at 3:30a.m!

A blessing in disguise, I guess, because I have somehow managed to come up with this entry :)

Now, the SECOND reason why I still can’t go back to sleep is that in less than 5 hours, Hanna will be getting her PMR result!

I’m pretty nervous even though I have every confidence in her, insya Allah…But, Moms, being Moms, we just can’t help feeling the jitters, kan?

Come what may, I know she has worked hard, and I’m very, very, very proud of her.

And as my senior at school, Along Faezah would say, “Usaha sudah, tawakal sudah. And now kita redha with anything that comes our way…”

All the best, my darling Hanna! Mommy and Ayah love you VERY, VERY MUCH! And don’t you ever forget that…

And (after all that was said! :)) even when your PMR results would mean that you probably would get good SPM results, too, insya Allah, and can probably go ahead and pursue medicine after school, do think about it twice (or maybe, three or four times, or more, okay, dear…?) ;)

* By the way, Ayah's MM article for this week can be read here :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Cerita choti...and such...

God. I'd better not get used to NOT blogging for more than a month!

All rusty already.

Ayah has been asking me every now and then, "You ada blog posting baru tak?"

I guess, with him being so ultra-busy nowadays, reading my blog might just be the only way he could keep up with what's happening with me and the kids kot? Hehehe...

The last one month had been okay. In fact, more than okay!

Did I mention that we went to Gold Coast?

Well, yeah, we did. We were there for a week - terbang there on 19 November, and terbang balik on 26 November.

It was a really nice break for just us family, and we had a wonderful time there.

We stayed at Mark*am Court, Broadbeach - which was just about 5 minutes walk to the beach and The Oasis Shopping Centre, and 5 minutes drive to Surfers Paradise and Pacific Fair Shopping Mall. We rented a 2-bedroom apartment with 2 bathrooms, a kitchen (fully equipped), a living room, a dining hall, a utility room (with washing machine, dryer, and ironing facilities), with a secured basement parking - only accessible by residents. Worked well with us as we had rented a car for the full one week we were there.

We had booked our car online from Coolangatta Her*z Car Rental and we didn't have to pay any booking fees at all. Right after clearing the customs check-point, we just walked to Her*z Counter at the airport with our rental reference code, and within 15 minutes we got our car - a Camry Sportiva(o?). And on the day we were flying back to KL, we drove to the airport, parked the car at the parking lot, dropped the key at Her*z counter and went straight to the AA Check-in Counter. All done within 10 minutes!

Mark*am Court is located just off the Gold Coast Highway which brings you straight-ish to all the Theme Parks - Movie World and Wet n Wild (20 minutes drive), Dream World and White Water World (25 minutes drive) and Sea World (10 minutes drive). We bought VIP tickets to all the Theme Parks (valid until 30 June 2011 - a good excuse to go back to GC before the tickets expire, huh? ;)It's cheaper getting the Family VIP tickets + 1 Adult ticket compared to getting individual tickets for all) and we did in fact go to Movie World and Dream World TWICE over 4 days - the first time just to go on the rides and do a bit of shopping, and second time - to indulge in more shopping there! Hehehe... :)

Even though it was mostly gloomy throughout most of our stay there - with intermittent showers and sunny intervals here and there, that didn't spoil our fun at all. Well, we just didn't linger on the weather facts even though we only had ONE full sunshiny day in the 6 days we were there. We made sure that, came rain or shine we were on the rides at the parks for most of the times! (Well, at least the kids were :)).

The day we arrived (we arrived at Coolangatta Airport at 7:50am, and at the apartment at 9:30am) we just spent the time resting and lepaking at the apartment, and later that afternoon, we went to The Oasis to shop for our one week grocery stock, and also to purchase our Theme Park tickets.

The next day was spent at Movie World and later at Broadbeach (even though it was freezing cold!)

The day after that was spent at Dream World and White Water World, and later that night we went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows at Pacific Fair Mall. Like la cannot watch the movie in Malaysia, kan? But, the kids insisted on watching it there that night! Aiyooo... But, Ayah said, "This holiday is mainly for the kids, so, we just do the things they want to do to make them happy lah, kan?". So, the Boss (who's also the Menteri Kewangan) won, and the kids got their movie treat :)

The day after that was spent at Wet n Wild, Movie World (again!) AND Dream World (again).

The day after that - it was my turn for some thrilling "rides" at Harbourtown Outlet Centre, and later that night, we spent some time souvenir shopping at Surfers Paradise.

The day after that - we went to Broadbeach again, and we later went to Sea World, and then shopping (again) at Pacific Fair. And of course - being our last night there - malam tu pulun shopping for souvenirs at Surfers Paradise again!

Hanna and Hasya went on MOST of the BIG THRILL rides at the parks. You just name it, they were on it (except for the ones which were under maintenance on the days we were there). THEY DEFINITELY DO NOT HAVE MY GENES, unlike Hilman who was rather selective when it came to choosing his rollercoaster rides. He opted to NOT go on the ones which would leave one with a zero-gravity sensation and those which would make one feeling ultra-dizzy, post-ride. So very like his Mommy... Hehehe! :)

Apart from the Theme Parks and the occcassional shopping trips, we didn't really go out that much as the kids preferred to just sleep and rest at the apartment. And what with Ayah subscribing to a week Wifi connection to the apartment, the kids had a field day going online in the evenings!

Anyway, as we were not really rushing to go to all the places around Gold Coast and Brisbane recommended for tourists, all in all it was quite a relaxing break for us, for Ayah especially, as he managed to catch up on some sleep over there. (But, having said that, he had to spend a few hours on Tuesday to work on his MM article which he had to submit that night for the Wednesday issue! What to do? Orang Gila Kerja like that lah!)

After spending 6 days in Gold Coast, we checked out of Mark*am Court on Friday morning, took the 9:50 am flight back to KL and by 3:30pm (Msian time) we were back on home soil.

Syukur alhamdulillah, everything dipermudahkan for us from the day we left KL until the day we came back :)

If it's a relaxing but fun break in GC that you're looking for, I think 1 week is just nice with you renting an apartment and a car (with a GPS), and do as what you please in your own time, having a good nap here and there. Just like what we did.

BUT, if you feel like you want to explore a bit more of what GC and Brisbane have to offer, you should rent an apartment and a car (with a GPS, of course!) and stay for 10 days. OR if you can't afford to stay that long due to limited cuti and all, then, alternatively you can go for a 5D4N OR 6D5N packaged tour (which will be pretty hectic as there are so many things to do and so many places to go to (on top of the 5 Theme Parks!) within that 6 days.

Anyway, I had wanted to post an entry on our GC trip earlier, but, after coming back to KL I was pretty buried in an avalanche of exams invigilations, and of course - with the task of marking the exam scripts lah pulak after that. And on top of that, two days after we came back, it was my MIL's turn to go for a vacation, and we were "house-sitting" for her for a couple of weeks, while she was in London.

Nak jadikan cerita, her maid ran away last Friday, 2 days before my MIL was due to come home!

I was not at home when it happened. In fact I was on my way home from the office. My SIL Rubiah was there with her kids, along with Hasya and Hilman, and Bibik Dar. Everybody was inside the house, while the maid - Eton - was sweeping outside. We checked the CCTV recording after she cabut and it showed her tawaf the compound a few times, looking out to the main road nervously every now and then, and at 4:57pm, she went down to the garage with the penyapu lidi, pretending to sweep there, walked towards the garbage closet, walked through it, and never came back in!

And I reached home at 5:25pm.

And we only knew she was gone at 6:45pm when Dar could not find her when she was supposed to start cooking dinner then! All those while everybody was thinking that she was outside watering the plants, and doing some gardening.

And the recordings also showed that the guard was standing about 30 feet from the garbage closet when Eton went out. He was looking out at the back, probably enjoying a breather of the angin petang, watching the golfers doing their thang. And he was oblivious to the fact that Eton had cabut lari right under his nose...

Anyway, like Hilman (maybe rightly?) put it, "The guard is supposed to make sure nobody comes INTO the house, NOT goes OUT of the house, Mommy..."

My MIL came back on Sunday night, and with her being maidless now, we are extending our stay at her place so that Dar can help her out around the house.

So, begitulah ceritanya...

So, that's all for now. Hopefully, there'll be another update from me soon, insya Allah.

In the mean time, here are some pics from our Gold Coast trip. Enjoy!

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

P/S :- Please be warned : A friend took nearly 3 days to go through the pics (in between his free time and work schedule, of course :))

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hikayat 64 Malam...

Hmmm...the last time, I was off my blog for more than a month. And this time around, it's another record.

Forgive me Blog, for I have slackened. It has been more than 2 months since my last posting - 64 days, to be exact! :(

Life has been pretty hectic at the home front and also at work, and with FB being at my mere fingertips day in day out, it became a preferred venue to share my thoughts with friends. Less hassles, and less time involved.

Believe me, many a times I had wanted to post new entries here, but somehow or rather things got into my way, and when opportune times came by, I would be just too zonked out, or the news that I had wanted to share had become yesterday's news.

And you know how it is when you have heaps to tell and/do, and you just don't know where to start, that after a while it becomes such a humongous task to actually carry them out, and you decide to just put them on hold. Time and time again. And again.

Guilty as charged.

But, I have to say this - I do miss blogging. Very much :(

I know I have friends out there who had followed me through this blog of mine, and somehow I feel that I have lost their/your friendship over the last few months due to my non-active blogging phase. For that, I humbly apologize...

So, I hope this entry will kick-start my blogging streak again, insya Allah, and what better way than to pick up from where we left off, kan? For those who have been following my rattles and ups and downs over Facebook, please bear with me, as most of what I'm going to write here will be very much like a re-play of events. Sorry, guys!

So, where do I begin?

What had happened since 7 September 2010?

Hmmmm...Let me see.

Of course - there was Raya Puasa which Ayah, me and the kids celebrated in KL. Pagi Raya - we were at my MIL's place in Tropicana, and in the afternoon, we celebrated with my parents in Kota Damansara. The big hoohah for Raya was of course - Baju Melayu Ayah and Hilman tak siap satu pun! (And there I was worrying about us girls punya baju yang takut tak siap! Khadijah, our tailor had in fact managed to siapkan 2 pairs of our baju kurungs! (Alamak!!! That reminds me! Our third pairs - the orange themed ones are still uncollected since Raya Puasa! Have to call her. Hopefully dah siap, so that we can wear them for Raya Haji next week, insya Allah. And, Baju Melayu Ayah and Hilman yang tak siap for Raya Puasa hari tu pun are still uncollected from Omar Ali for that matter! Mak oiii... They actually called Ayah 2-3 weeks after Raya hari tu asking him to collect the baju Melayu, but, both of us have been pretty tied up, and langsung terlupa! (Alamak...mana la pulak I letak receipts for the baju, ya?)

Whatever it is, Insya Allah I will collect them by the end of this week, and we'll have an ORANGE Raya Haji this year :)

And of course, there was Hanna and her PMR. As we were without a maid then, we decided to "pindah" to my MIL's house for two weeks - a week before PMR and a week during PMR to make sure that Hanna's studying schedule would not be disrupted and so that she could concentrate and focus on her revision. If we had not done that, Hanna would have had to carry all her books and stuff to and fro from Tropicana to Sri Damansara everyday, and THAT surely would not have helped her to have a clear mind to sit for her papers.

If we were to have followed our normal routine then, she would have had to go to my MIL's place after school, and I would have picked up her and her siblings from there, and go back to SD after 7:00pm, and the next day she would have had to leave the house from SD to go to school, with all her materials for her revision for that day, to be brought to my MIL's after school, etc and the cycle would have continued, and she would have been mentally and physically exhausted at the end of every day!

So, stayed at my MIL's place we did. For 2 solid weeks.

Hanna was pretty cool about her papers. Unlike her Mommy (who tried her very best to stay cool though...). She said they were okay, except for her Science 2 Paper. Anyway, apparently many candidates reported the same, so, insya Allah, she'll be okay.

And after PMR until now, she has been making her school like her Bapak punya sekolah, and only goes when she feels like going. And there had been days when she felt like going, but, Mommy said "No need to go!" (coz' Mommy malas nak hantar! So, Mommy buat sekolah Hanna macam sekolah laki Mommy lah pulak! HAHAHA!)

And of course - the biggest news must be this - BIBIK DAR IS BACK!

Remember when I posted on incident berbalas-balas SMS with her hubby dulu? Was it in January this year?

Well, anyway, apparently, Dar had in fact returned to KL in January using the permit that we had renewed for her, but, instead of coming back to us, she had gone to Muar to work with her brother there. And all this while she had been there, thinking that her permit was still valid, not knowing that we had in fact cancelled it early April.

So, I guessed, thinking that her permit would expire in November (which she didn't know that in fact it had been cancelled dah pun!), she called me early last month, disguising as "RIRIN", her friend - asking me if I still needed a maid and that Dar was wondering if she could come back and work with us again. This "RIRIN" told me that Dar was then still in Indonesia, and that her husband had then allowed her to come back to Malaysia and work again, and that Dar ONLY wanted to work with us.

I knew it was her on the phone, but, I just played along and told her that I would have to discuss the matter with Ayah, ESPECIALLY when at that point in time, we had already submitted our application for new maid, and we were just waiting for the new maid to come. (Remember Mutmainah dari Jawa Tengah?)

And the next couple of days that followed, I received calls from her brother in Muar, pleading me to take Dar back and when I asked him why was it that Dar didn't admit that "RIRIN" who had called me was in fact her, the brother said that she was afraid that I would scold her. Duuhhh?! You'd think?!

Anyway, me being me yang cepat kesian kat orang, decided to take her back, even though I know Ayah was (is?) dead against it...

Ayah told me that he should not be the one who's angry with what Dar had done, as she not returning had actually affected me more than it had affected him, in that my life had gone haywire since I became maidless in Sri Damansara for 10 months! And because of that, Ayah had let me decide whether I wanted Dar back or not.

And after weighing the pros and cons of things, I decided to take her back.

So, Dar is now back with us, and our house has ceased to be a tongkang pecah anymore, and more importantly - my laundry is being done (washed/ironed/folded/hanged) everyday, without fail. (Too bad for Mr. Dhobi who had made a fortune out of me for the last 10 months, though...Hehehe!)

And more importantly, the kids are very, very happy to have her back! :)

But, I have to say that Ayah did not speak to Dar for the first 3 weeks she was back with us. In fact, I think, he only started speaking to Dar at the end of last week, kot?

But, it's good to have her back. It's like she never left. The first day she came back, she started mengemas everything and by the third day, everything was tip top again. Syukur alhmadulillah...

But, of course, now we're in a fix.

We don't really know how to "legalize" her again, and Mutmainah will be her at the end of this week!

We had thought of just cancelling Mutmainah, and in fact there have been quite a number of friends who are more than willing to take her from us. But, it just so happened - my SIL's maid ran away a few days ago (what's new, huh?!), and so, Mutmainah will be working with my SIL, instead, insya Allah.

Our agent offered to process Dar's documents for a fee of RM5k which we think is pretty steep, and we are now still looking for other agents who can do it for us at a lower fee. If any one of you knows a reputable agent who might be able to help us to get out of this fix, please, please, please let me know, ya? Thank you, thank you, thank you! :)

Hmmmm...Have I missed out on any other significant events which happened in the last couple of months? Let me think...

Nope, I think that's about it.

If anything pops up later, it'll be in my next posting, insya Allah :)

So, that's all for now, and I hope to come up with another entry soon, insya Allah.

Maaaannn...It's good to be back, you all! :)


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

From Aidifitri :)


God... Can't believe that I have not updated this blog of mine for more than a month!

Ramadhan has been pretty hectic for everyone, I guess, and no exception for me. Somehow, this year puasa seems to pass by so quickly. It has not been as bad as I had expected, being maidless and all. And I surprised myself this year with the fact that out of the 28 days of fasting, syukur alhamdulillah, I had managed to consistently wake up between 4:30am to 4:45am to prepare sahur for the family. Cuma once we nearly terlajak when I woke up at 5:25am, and we ended up having bread and jam for sahur!

Anyway, sahur has been okay since we very rarely have rice, and the whole family can survive the whole day fasting with just 2 pieces of bread/toasts with our own choice of fillings or soups/dips, and/or other non-rice stuff for sahur. So, my life has been pretty easy when it comes to preparing sahur thus far.

The kids and Ayah are also not fussy when it comes to Iftar either. I would cook when time permits. If not, we would either eat out, tapau or berbuka at my MIL's or my Mom's.

All five of us have lost some kilos over the last 3-4 weeks, but unfortunately, I have not succeeded in meeting my aim of losing 2kgs more over Ramadhan, but syukur alhamdulillah I have managed to lose 3kgs out of the aimed 4kgs which I started out in April.

I was just telling Hilman how much weight he had lost and I was praising him for being such a good boy over Ramadhan, and had encouraged him to maintain his weight or lose a bit more after raya. I was just telling him how much more handsome he looked now that he has lost some of his baby fat (Hehehe!) and that he should start controlling his food intake from now on.

And this was what he said, "Okay, I'll start a week after raya".

Me : Why a week after raya, Man?!

Hilman : Because I'll be busy the first one week.

Me : Busy?! Busy with what?

And Hilman dengan selambanya replied - "Makan..."

LOL!!! That's my boy :)

Anyway, I still have not collected our baju raya from the tailors yet, and hope to do it today. I just hope Khatijah, has finished siapkan baju for us girls. I actually sent to her to sew 3 pairs each of baju kurung for us, and she said she could only guarantee to siapkan a pair each, and if we're lucky we'll get two pairs. My worry now is if she has not even siapkan that one guaranteed pair! I have been calling her since yesterday, but she has not been answering, so today I'll just drop by her shop at pasar Taman Tun. Wish me luck!

As for Baju Melayu Ayah and Hilman, clever me has misplaced the Omar Ali's receipts! But, luckily, I remember Ayah's number for last year's baju which Abang Man the tailor has re-used for this year. The only thing is, I hope they have kept Hilman's bajus together with Ayah's because I for sure cannot remember his new receipt number. Sigh...Anyway, hope to drop by at Wisma Yakin later today to collect the baju melayu and get a new samping for Hilman. Our boy has outgrown all his old sampings!

Hilman has really shot up over Ramadhan, and I guess maybe it's because he has lost some weight, and somehow that has made him look taller :) But, having said that, we've also discovered that he's now wearing Size 7 shoes when we went to get his chapal raya the other day! That's like 2 sizes more than his previous Raya shoes! Hanna and Hasya have also lost a lot of weight and have grown rather lanky this Ramadhan, and somehow have become rather matured young ladies over the month :)

As always, there's a tinge of sadness to say farewell to Ramadhan especially when I feel that I could have done so much more in terms of amal ibadah. Insya Allah akan diberikan rezqi again to sambut bulan mulia ini di tahun hadapan, dan memperbaiki lagi diri ini, insya Allah. Amin...

Raya this year will be extra wonderful as Ayah has been extra generous this year as Ayah has presented me with early Raya and Anniversary gifts early last month in the form of a bracelet and a ring! Yeay!!! (Oh, that reminds me - I have to get him an Anniversary Card and gift for our 16th Anniversary this Thursday 090910!) And he had also asked the girls to choose a piece of jewelry each as raya gifts, and a raya watch for Hilman :) And oooh, I realized that the girls have outgrown their little girls' taste when I saw the designs that they have chosen for themselves! No more charms or cute dangly bracelets and pendants, and the likes. (Yikes!! They're growing up too fast!)

Apart from that, Raya this year will be the same as all our previous rayas. Raya eve will be spent at my parents' place when I would help out to kemas the house gotong royong with my sisters and help to cook the rendang and all and then I would go back to my MIL's and spend the night there. Pagi Raya will be spent at my MIL's and we will only go back to my parents' in the afternoon and stay on until very late. My Sis Lala also has a similar arrangement with her hubby, so, her family will also be there in the afternoon until late. And my second and third brothers (if they don't go back to the wives' kampungs) will be there at our parents' the first three days of Raya.

That's one of the things that I'm thankful for - the fact that my parents and my MIL stay about 20 minutes from each other's and our house, and we don't have to ikut giliran balik kampung. The downside is - my kids don't really have a kampung per se, and as such do not really get the real feeling of Raya like most of their friends get :( But. like they say - we win some, we lose some, eh?

My raya leave only starts on Thursday, and I will be away from work for the whole of next week. Nice :) But, as it is, I'm already in Raya mood, and can't seem to do much at the office this week. But, I'm trying my best to finish whatever I can so that I can really enjoy the long break with the family. We're not planning to go anywehere, but, lazying around the house for one whole week sounds perfect (and surely would contribute to the accelerated post-raya weight-gaining process. Sigh...But, what the heck... It's Raya :))

Ooops! Is that the time? Okay, gotta go and get ready for work now.

But, before that I would like to wish you all -

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri :)

And if in any ways at all I might have wronged or offeneded any of you with the things I have written in here, or in any other ways at all -

Jari Sepuluh disusun, Mohon Maaf Zahir Batin.

Enjoy the time spent with your loved ones, y'all!

Take care! :)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

I hope my kids will miss me...

I'm 42 years old this year. Syukur alhamdulillah.

I know some who didn't make it past 40.

And I also know some who have lived nearly twice the years I've been on this earth. My Abah is one of them. He turned 81 in March this year. Syukur Alhamdulillah. Having survived two episodes of cancer in his life, and on medication for hypertension for the last 10 years now, he looks good for a man his age. A bit frail, but still good, considering.

And my Mommy will be 71 come November this year, insya Allah. She's a diabetic, she has hypertension, she had a stroke a few years back and she also had triple angioplasty done on her. But, syukur alhamdulillah, she's doing okay.

I have passed the 40-year mark. And I don't know if I will ever pass the 70-year mark, let alone the 80-year mark.

But, I hope I can fill whatever time I have left on this earth, even if I don't meet the ripe age of 80, with things that will make my kids miss me.

It may sound selfish - wanting the kids to miss me when I'm gone. But, I mean this in a positive way.

I don't want my kids to mourn and grieve their Mommy forever. Of course not.

I just want them to remember me. I want them to remember how I look, how I smell, how I touch and hold their hands, how I hug and kiss them. How I stroke their heads, how I touch their cheeks, how I laugh with them. How I smile, how I talk, how I walk.

I want them to remember that I am always with them - physically, and if not - that they are always very much on my mind. Constantly - throughout my waking hours. And that sometimes I do dream of them when I sleep.

And for this to happen, I will need to spend as much time as possible with them as I don't know when I will breathe my last breath.

It's quite hard given the fact that I have to go to work, and they have to go to school (and also to the 1001 classes they have in between school and bedtime). And of course, they need their breathing space. I, too, need my breathing space.

It is hard, but it is not impossible.

It is impossible ONLY if you don't try. At all.

I know that I've been pretty hard to please and rather grumpy when I'm at home - having to attend to the house chores after a stressful day at work and all. And I also have to attend to so many other things/chores which are not home, or work-related, too.

Many a times, at night when the kids have all gone to sleep, I would just look at them and have this unexplainable sense of guilt and regret for yelling at them earlier in the day for what later seems to be such a simple and harmless act, and I realize that it was just the "pressure-cooker" in me doing the yelling...

I know some parents spend so much time at the office, and as if that is not enough, they would bring work home with them. And when they're at home, they are oblivious to what's happening around them - what the kids are doing, what the kids are (trying) to tell them. And some even snap at their kids for disturbing them. Some are always on the phone - talking or SMSing either with people from the office, or with their clients, or with friends. Some just come home and sleep, and go to work the next day. And the cycle goes on and on.

Of course we would expect our spouse and kids to understand just how hard we have to work for the family, and that we do need to rest and sleep when we're at home.

But, we also must not forget that our spouse and kids ALSO expect us to understand that they also want to spend time with us.

It is as easy as that.

The problem is, we tend to take our husbands or wives or kids for granted. We expect them to be there everyday waiting for us day in, day out. No matter what.

But, just because they never complain openly, that does not necessarily mean that they're fine with us not spending time with them.

I'm not saying that we should cut ourselves off from our friends, or that we should not get the rest and sleep that we badly need. But, what I'm trying to understand here is that IF we can MAKE time to attend to our bosses, to our clients, or to chat or SMS, or do whatever friends do with/between friends, why is it so hard for us to MAKE OR FIND TIME - however little, with whatever little time we have, for the family? Just THERE WITH the family. And I mean BE THERE TOTALLY, and not with our minds wandering elsewhere.

I DO TRY my best NOT to be that kind of a parent. I fail miserably sometimes, but, I do try my best to be there with the family, for the family.

Some may think that the time spent with the kids is just that - time with the kids.

But, I believe time spent bringing them to the doctors when they're sick, time spent bringing them to the shops to get the stuff for school, getting ice-creams on that hot and clammy day, sending and fetching them to and from their classes, bringing them to the barber/salon for a haircut, cleaning the hamsters' cage, listening to their favourite songs together, going shopping with them, getting to know what they like, what they don't like, performing solat with them and/or bringing them to the mosque to perform the solat, cooking for them and having a proper meal at the dinner table together, and through out all these, having meaningful conversations with them.

THOSE are the things that our children will remember us by.

NOT those fat cheques we bring home at the end of the month after slogging 18 hours a day, 7 days a week at work.

Well, the kids MAY appreciate the fact that we can afford to buy them stuffs and such. But, at the end of the day, they are just that. Things. And like all material things, these will never last.

If you can spare 18 hours a day at work, what is 12-18 hours over the weekend for your family? 6 to 9 exclusive hours per day of QUALITY time for just 2 days WITH and FOR the kids.

Just think about it. Why are you working so hard? Who are you doing it for?

Just be very careful - for one day you might end up long gone, and also long forgotten by your kids just because they don't have anything of you to remember by - those special moments you spend with them.

What they might have may just be images of you working, and working, and working...and you blowing your top with them because they are in between you, and your work.

Are these the images you want your kids to remember you by?

I hope not.

And with Ramadhan just around the corner, I hope we can all take advantage of the Holy month to start making more efforts at home to become better parents to our kids.

I hope to spend more time at home as a family and beribadah as a family, insya Allah...

I pray that Allah SWT will guide me so as not to take my loved ones for granted.

And I hope when I'm long gone, they will miss me...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Coming Soon - Mutmainah dari Jawa Tengah...

"Ok..I want 2 do dis 4 u dear..Duit bole cari, but I want u 2 relax n chill out wen u come home. Kalau x tu habislah anak2 kena marah..+ bapak they all sekali! Haha :)"


(Okay, okay... Granted. I can be so like a singa betina when I'm dead tired after a round of Bibik duties at home - and especially after a stressful day at the office).

Anyway, THAT was the SMS I got from Ayah last night after various SMSes between him, myself and Pn No*iz*n from a maid agency in SD. Even though we were quite shocked when we got to know the amount of dosh we have to part with to get a maid, we finally decided to just go ahead with it. Apparently, the amount quoted to us is the standard fee that one needs to pay for an Indonesian maid nowadays. In fact there are some agencies which charge between RM1k to RM1.5k more than that!


Really mencekedaghah more like it.

We've chosen one candidate by the name of Mutmainah, a 33 year old Mom of 3, from Jawa Tengah. She has worked in Malaysia before - there are pros and cons to that, like there are pros and cons to chosing EVERY single maid candidate out there irrespective of what are written in their biodata. So, pejam mata ajer lah. Pengemis tidak boleh menjadi pemilih... Bukankah begitu?

I was given the impression that this girl was already here and she could start straight away, and I was already planning to fold and iron at least HALF of my laundry yang dok menggunung in the back room, and also clean and tidy up the house a bit, coz' takut nanti Bibik pengsan bila sampai our house... Later I was told that it would take 2 months before all documents would be in order, etc. So, tolak campur kali bahagi, the new Bibik will only be here after Raya.

Well, I've been without a proper maid for 8 months now, what's another 2 months, kan? (I don't consider my last maid as a "proper" maid - for obvious reasons!)

Furthermore, this would also mean that I don't have to rush to iron and fold all those undone laundry, and there is also no need for me to break my back to do all that tidying up, too. At least for now ;)

So, insya Allah, we will not live like Kaum Badwi lagi nanti come end of September.

Having said that, this would mean that I can only REALLY chill out and relax at home in another 2 months time.

And in turn, this would also mean that Ayah and the kids would have to bear with this stressed out singa betina at home for another 2 months lagi...


Friday, July 9, 2010

Towkay tongkang pecah...

We are living like nomads. Again.

Back in 1998 until 2003, that was how we lived. We stayed with Mak - my MIL, in PJ, as it was more convenient for us given the circumstances then. Our SD house was just our weekend home.

We had two sets of everything. One set in PJ, another set in SD. Toiletries, Clothes (different categories - homewear, sleepwear, "jalan" wear, baju kerja, towels, beddings), shoes, socks, baldi, etc. You name it. Two sets of everything. And we're talking about stuff for FIVE people, okay?! And sometimes I would end-up wearing a baju in PJ, only to realize that the matching tudung(s) were in SD. The same goes with my shoes. Major crisis, weh...

Then we decided that someone had to cut the umbilical cord, and we started to slowly settle in our own house :) The kids were getting bigger and needed the space, and Ayah and I needed our own room (Hehehe!;)) And I also needed my own kitchen :)

We still kept two sets of some of the things in PJ though, but just what the kids might need while waiting for me to fetch them after work. Furthermore they still had their tuitions and a couple of nights mengaji in PJ. But, we got used to the arrangement.

And then Mak moved to her new house early last month.

And we now have THREE sets of everything in three different houses.

As Mak has yet to move fully out of her PJ home, the house is still very much the centre of the kids' Universe. It is still the more convenient stop/transit point for the kids compared to her new house, as it's near their school, tuition centres, music class. And, they still have their mengaji there as it's more convenient for the Ustadz. And of course - it's just 7 minutes away from my office (on a jam-free day).

Mak still goes back to the old house every day to shift the barang-barang bit by bit to the new place, and I'm doing the same thing.

Some of the stuff - I have shifted to the the new place. Some - back to SD.

And our old room in PJ is already like tongkang pecah.

The same with our house in SD. Sememang sedia maklum macam tongkang pecah since my maidless status. And now - with all the stuff shifted back there, dah jadi macam tiga tongkang pecah. And it doesn't help that now we spend most of our time at Mak's new house, and I just couldn't find the time to really tidy-up/clean-up our SD house!

And our room in the new house is also like tongkang pecah as I keep bringing stuff there from PJ, and I couldn't/can't seem to find the time to unpack and kemas them properly.

So, just imagine. Living in three tongkangs. All pecah...

But, we do find it relatively more convenient for us staying at Mak's new place especially when it's so much nearer to Ayah's hospital. He doesn't have to drive that far at the end of a hectic day at work to get home, and he doesn't have to drive that far in case he gets called to the hospital in the middle of the night.

Not to mention, our SD house pun sejak dua menjak macam merajuk (macam tau we're moving out to our BJ house). Air-cond bocor, plumbing leaking, some of the lightings buat hal, etc. So much so, that we feel it to be so much more comfortable staying at Mak's place. And of course - there's Mak's AV Room, which makes our World Cup experience more gempaq the last month or so :) Hehehee!

Every 2-3 days we would go back to SD so that the kids can get whatever stuff they need for school/lessons for the next 2-3 days. And also to feed Benji and Button (the hamsters) and Jasper (the terrapin). And I would normally try to do as much ironing and tidying up as I can in the short span of time we're there.

And now, I shudder to think of how it would be when we finally decide to move in to our BJ house nanti.

EMPAT tongkang pecah?!


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Minus 2, and okay with it :)

Salams, and 'Hi' y'all!

Remember on 20th April 2010 - I set a target for myself here?

Well, even though I have not managed to shed 4kgs by 30 June (today) as I had set out to do, I am still pleased to report that I have managed to get rid of 2kgs, and I am happy :)

Considering that I had to forget about spending 2-3 times a week at the gym, or going on the treadmill and cross/trainer daily at home after Anis the Bibik decided to quit, I think I have done rather well. 2kg loss - that's more than I had ever lost in the last 3 years. The most dramatic weightloss was 4kg over 3 months back in 2006. So, syukur alhamdulillah for the current feat :)

I will continue with whatever I have managed to do in the last 3 months in terms of trying to lose weight, and hopefully, I will meet the 'Minus-4' target eventually, insya Allah.

It's Minus-2 target now - by Merdeka Day :)

Come. Join me (again) ;)

Another 2kgs. That's definitely achievable!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Jalan-Jalan Cari Makan, and Down Memory Lane...

The last time we went for a family holiday was in November last year (I think?) Even then, I wouldn't really call it a "holiday" as such, as it was only a 3D2N break in Genting, and we were there to tag Ayah who had a meeting there. We only spent time as a family when Ayah had fulfilled whatever obligations he had during the meeting. Even then, the second night we were there, Ayah had to turun bukit as he had a prior commitment in KL, and he only re-joined us the next morning. Like most of our "tag-along" breaks, all accommodation and meals at the hotel were taken care by Ayah's sponsors. So, we only had to foot the bills for all the fun stuff at the Theme Park :)

The school holidays which had just passed was no different, as yet again we went for another tag-along break with Ayah. This time to Penang. Ayah was one of four speakers at a Cardio Meeting held at Ho*id*y Inn, Batu Feringghi, and he was given a couple of duties for Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning, and again, all expenses for our stay at the hotel were sponsored by the organizers.

(Hehehe...So, by now you all have surely got it - we only go for a holiday when we don't have to pay for it! Hahaha! Cheap-skate, huh? ;))

Anyway, we decided to start our trip up to Penang on Friday morning and break our journey in Taiping - spending the night at my Brother Jame's place before continuing our drive to Batu Feringghi on Saturday morning.

It was somewhat a different experience this time around as we brought along Zaidy to drive us, and as we were in no rush, we managed to take a few "Jalan-jalan Cari Makan" (JJCM)and "Down Memory Lane" (DML) breaks along the way. It was a leisurely drive, and Ayah managed to get some sleep during the journey (which was just as well as he only had a 2 1/2 hours sleep the night before - NOT because he was watching a World Cup match, but rather because he had to attend to an emergency until 5:30 in the morning).

Suffice to say, the trip brought a lot of memories, and not to mention a few kilos back! Dang...Whatever kilos I had managed to shed in the last couple of months, I gained back half of them over the four days break :(

Anyway, just to summarize our JJCM and DML trip, the first stop we made on our way to Taiping on Friday, was at the Sg. Buloh R&R for our breakfast (where I had a bowl of Meehoon Soto - calorie counter started its duty then). The next stop was at the Tapah R&R to buy some fruits as buah tangan for my brother and family - the normal Jambu Air, Jambu Batu and Mangoes with the Serbuk Asam Boi and Kuah Rojak. We then proceeded to Kuala Kangsar as Ayah wanted to bring and show the kids his alma mater. We spent a good 45 minutes just walking around the school compound and taking pictures, after which we had lunch at the Sungei Perak Resort (where I had a plate of Char Kuey Teow pulak. "Kachiiiinnnggg!!" screamed the calorie counter!) The next stop was the Masjid Ubudiah Bukit Chandan, and I must say that we were very impressed with how the exterior of the Masjid was being maintained. It was simply beautiful.

We left Kuala Kangsar at around 3:45p.m, and ended up taking the jalan lama up north instead of the North-South Highway when Zaidy missed a turn - which was in fact a blessing in disguise as we ended up in Bukit Gantang. And of course, when you're in Bukit Gantang, it would be a sin NOT to indulge yourselves in their famous durian, right? And that was what we did. We just stopped by a durian stall along the jalan lama, and had the most delicious durians beramai-ramai. I think I probably had 7-8 pieces of durians at one sitting (calorie counter on over-drive!) I swear I could have taken in more durians, but the plateful of Char Kuey Teow which I just had barely 2 hours before that just didn't leave much space for me to do that! :( Silap strategy wehhh...

We reached Taiping Town just after 5:00p.m, and went around the beautiful Lake Gardens, and I decided to show the kids my primary school - Treacher Methodist Girls School. Tak mau kalah... Ayah dah tunjuk sekolah dia, Mommy pun kena tunjuk sekolah Mommy...Hehehe! I have to say that we were REALLY impressed with how clean the whole school was. Kudos to the teachers and pupils of TMGS! One thing I realized - the things that seemed huge around the school when I was schooling there seemed so much smaller last weekend. So many things have changed, but having said that, I was still overwhelmed with the familiarities and memories the visit to the school had brought back to me.

We later brought the kids to visit my Uncle Yang who was staying at my Arwah grandparents' house in Kamunting, and yet again, memories of how I had spent my days at my Atok and Atah's house when I was a child flooded in. I remembered playing hide and seek around the kampung, and I remembered how my siblings and cousins used to hide in our Atok's neighbours' houses. We were free to roam the kampung, and we were welcome to hide in all the houses there, tak kira mana ceruk rumah. We were known as "Cucu Tuan Haji Ismail" - the Tok Mudin Moden :)

After Kamunting, we made our way to Assam Kumbang to show the kids the two houses I lived in before I left for boarding school in JB. The house in Rodger Place (government quarters) where I spent the first 5 years of my life is still there and I must say is quite well-maintained, compared to the house in Jalan Sekolah Arab which we rented from 1974 to 1982. I could feel a heavy tug on my heart when I saw how the latter was pretty much abandoned and rundown, and I suddenly realized that my eyes were welling up with tears looking at the house which was once known among the orang kampung as the "Rumah Putih Jalan Sekolah Arab". It was not the only house which was abandoned there. A number of other houses which my childhood friends used to live in and which I used to frequent were also in similar conditions, if not worse. It was just so sad.

I left Assam Kumbang with a heavy heart, and we made our way to the Taiping Railway Station where my Brother Jame was to meet us. He and his family had just moved to a new house and I was not familiar with the new area. Jame met us outside the Railway Station - another place which brought a lot of memories back to me as that was where I used to bid farewell to my Mommy and Abah and shed buckets of tears everytime I had to go back to JB on the Keretapi Mel at the end of every school holiday in the 80's. I must say, the Railway Station didn't seem to have changed that much, even after 25 years since my last train ride from there. It was as if time stood still there.

We had a late tea of Satay Basree and Popiah Basah Cashier Market at Jame's place. It was sweet of Jame to remember my favourite - Satay Perut and Limpa/Paru, and I dare not reveal how many sticks of that sinful stuff ended in my tummy that day!! (calorie counter kerja kuat!) As if that was not enough, we had a late dinner and yours truly had Rice with Daging Merah and Telur Bungkus that night. Tak hengat dunia...

Breakfast the next morning was the customary Nasi Lemak and Roti Chanai (and I just couldn't be bothered with my diet dah at this point. Hehehe!) We only left Taiping at 11:00a.m.

The journey to Penang took us slightly more than 2 hours, as we were not that familiar with the roads. We checked-in at the hotel just after 1:00p.m and were given two rooms - the girls got one room all to themselves, while our Boy Chiman had to settle with sharing a room with his Ayah and Mommy :) We had lunch just before 2:00p.m and yours truly had a plate of Mee Goreng Mamak (the damage has been done anyway, kan? Might as well...LOL!).

The time after lunch was spent making myself busy unpacking stuff and making the rooms homely while waiting for Ayah to come back from his meeting. But, by 4:15p.m when there was no sign of Ayah coming back to the room, the kids and I decided to go down to the beach first. The kids went horse-riding before starting their sandcastle-building project, which later transformed into a dam-building effort, but which ended up as deep hole-digging venture between Hasya and Hilman and a few new friends they made on the beach.

Ayah managed to get away from his meeting and joined us at 5:30p.m. and what better way to welcome him to the beach than by getting him to watch Hanna go para-sailing! (I tell you...I know for certain that she definitely does not follow her Mommy. I would have peed in my pants even before I were to take off with the parachute!) So, that was fun. For Hanna. But, not for her Mommy who literally stopped breathing a few times watching her daughter floating/gliding so high up in the air! Lomah lutut den...

We had a poolside BBQ and Buffet Dinner at the hotel (which meant I basically walloped whatever I fancied at the buffet station) after which we decided to go for supper at Hard Rock Cafe. Malang nasib kami, as we didn't make any reservations, we couldn't get in. That place was filled to the brim. (A note to self - next trip to Penang, have to make sure I make reservations first). We made up for the disappointment by shopping sakan at the Hard Rock Shop, and later jalan-jalan at the night gerai along the main road leading to the hotel.

Sunday morning - after a breakfast of Teochew Porridge, Fried Meehoon, Scrambled Eggs and sausages (some in big and some in small portions...Hehehe!), the girls accompanied Hilman who wanted to go for a swim in the pool while their Mommy started to pack everybody's stuff back in the room. A good 2 hours were spent at the pool before the kids came up to have their shower and help me with the final packing.

By 12:30p.m everything was ready, and while waiting for Ayah to come back from his meeting, the kids and I had a few rounds of table tennis (which I'm sure did not help much in burning the newly-gained calories in me...) Ayah finally joined us for a couple of games at about 1:00p.m before we proceeded to have lunch at the Terrace Cafe. No need to tell lah what I had for lunch...too sinful :) Suffice to say there was Lamb Korma somewhere in it ;)

We checked out at 2:00p.m and started our journey back to KL. Again - a slow drive down as we were not in a rush. We made two stops on the way. The first stop was at Kuala Sepetang, just outside Taiping - for the famous Mee Udang Mak Jah just before 5:00p.m. I had the Mee Udang Special (with loads of udang and 2-3 Udang Besar thrown in) and we all agreed that the prawns were the freshest we've ever tasted. I have to say that the taste of the Mee Udang was not really out of this world, but, the fresh big prawns were definitely worthed the detour to Kuala Sepetang :)

We left Gerai Mak Jah just before 6:00p.m and continued our journey back to KL, making one last stop in Tapah to get some fruits and petais for my Mommy and MIL.

We reached my MIL's house just after 9:00p.m, syukur alhamdulillah...

Kesian the kids - had to go to school the next day, but, luckily they had prepared all their uniforms and schoolbags for Monday before we left for Penang, and I think they went to sleep as soon as their heads touched the pillow that night.

And with all the mix and match of food going through my esophogus over the four days, you would have thought that I would end up with a tummy upset, right?

Syukur alhamdulillah - nope.

But, the next day, I got this text from Zaidy -

"Salam, puan. Hari ini saya MC boleh? Sakit perut".

So, there goes my leave for Monday as I had to be on supir duty the whole day. His perut is not as durable as my perut it seems :)

Hmmmm...Maybe that's God's way of helping me to shed the excess kilos I gained over the weekend, kan? ;)

* Click here for some photos ;)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Something new and something old for the holidays :)

It's Friday today. Exactly one week of the school holidays has come and gone, and it doesn't really feel like a holiday. Well, for me at least.

The past one week has kept me busy with work at the office and organizing and managing stuff relating to Ayah's practice/business (filing this and filing that, paying this and paying that, etc.) But, most of all, I've been busy shifting things and stuff to my MIL's new house.

Yes, after more than 6 years, her house is finally ready, syukur alhamdulillah...

She had planned to hold a Khenduri Do'a Selamat, Tahlil and Majlis Kesyukuran sempena her moving to the new place on her 70th Birthday on Sunday, 6th June 2010, starting with Solat Maghrib, followed by Tahlil, Solat Isya' and Dinner. So, the few days leading to that date, everybody was busy cleaning the house, moving stuff and making the rooms in the new house homely for the Khenduri.

The night before the Khenduri, the five of us - Ayah, the kids and I decided to "test" sleeping at the house. We were the first 5 people to do so as my MIL is quite a conservative when it comes to all these, whereby she only wanted to start sleeping there after the Khenduri Do'a Selamat disempurnakan. Syukur alhamdulillah, everybody slept soundly and peacefully that night. Even though it was a strange feeling waking up at the new place the next morning with just the five of us in the house, I could see that the kids were all excited about their Wan's new abode.

The Khenduri went well, albeit an initial hitch when there was a blackout while we were performing Solat Maghrib. Thanks to a friend - Ir Jo* of TNB who was one of our guests that night, we managed to get back the supply just before 8:00p.m.

It was a bit chaotic later on when the caterer only provided us with 3 (VERY SLOW!) waiters/waitress to attend to nearly 200 guests (when my MIL had requested for at least 8!), So, most of orang rumah had to also turun padang to speed everything up. Very stressful indeed, especially for my MIL, but, syukur alhamdulillah, the whole thing went okay.

The last guests left just before midnight, and after we cleaned up the house, and had our food, we finally went to bed close to 2:00a.m - the first night Ayah's family slept together under one roof in the new house (except for Along and his family who had to be in Perth). It was, I'm sure a very meaningful night for my MIL...

We have been sleeping there ever since the Khenduri, with me only going back to Sri D'sara every other day to wash the clothes in the morning before going to the office, as the washing machine from the old house was only sent to the new house yesterday. I also need to replenish the hamsters' and terrapin's food and water every other day. And of course, while I'm in Sri D'sara, I also take the opportunity to pack some of our stuff from Sri D'sara and send to the new house.

Those who knew our living arrangement before this would know that we had two sets of nearly all of our daily necessities - one set in our own house in Sri D'sara, and another set in Mak's house in PJ. This was because the PJ house was basically the kids' transit point after school, whereby they would be there until I fetched them to bring home to Sri D'sara after work everyday.

The PJ house is still there, and still being used by my MIL. So, a set of our daily necessities and clothes are still there. My MIL still goes back there everyday to hold meetings with her staff from the office, and I think she will continue with this arrangement indefinitely. The kids still have their Mengaji Class there, and as the house is nearer to all their tuition/piano/chess classes compared to the new place, it is still very much our transit point at the moment. So, basically, when we say "Wan's house" to the kids, we now have to specify WHICH house we're actually referring to :)

So, my job for the past one week has been to build up another set of all our daily necessities at the new house - Baju "Rumah", Baju "Jalan", Baju Tidur, Baju "Kecik", Beddings, Towels, Toiletries, decors, soft furnishings, etc. And doing just that has kept me pretty busy outside of my working hours in the last 5 days or so.

As if having two sets of necessities before this wasn't stressful enough, I now have to make sure that all three sets are complete everytime we plan to stay at either one of the houses! Hehehe...

The kids don't seem to mind not going anywhere this school holidays, as I think they find discovering all nooks and corners around their Wan's new house is an adventure in itself. Many times I just couldn't find where they were in the house exactly - Hilman and Hasya, especially!

We had not made any plans to go anywhere this holiday as Hanna's having her PMR this year, and she has tuitions nearly every other day the whole of the cuti. But, we pity the kids, so, Ayah and I decided that we should tag along with him for his meeting in Penang next week. And insya Allah, we'll break our journey in Taiping - my hometown. Yeay!! :)

I'm really looking forward to that trip as the last time we were back in Taiping with the kids was probably 8 years ago! Hanna was 6, Hasya was 3 and Hilman was only 2 years old then, and I don't think they remember much of that trip, especially the two younger ones.

My second brother - Jame and his family are still in Taiping, as are a number of my uncles, aunties and cousins. As my Abah and Mommy are staying in KL now, we rarely go back to Taiping nowadays, as everytime there's a long holiday, my Brother Jame would come down to KL instead.

I plan to bring and show the kids the house and the kampung where I grew up in - where I lived with their Jaddi and Jaddati before going to boarding school, to their arwah Moyang's house (which is now occupied by an uncle) and to my old primary school which is located within the beautiful Taiping Lake Gardens area. And insya Allah, if time permits, we'll probably go on the Night Safari at the Zoo :)

This school holidays might not be an extravagant one for the kids, but, in a way, I hope that this will be one of the most special ones for them, insya Allah. On one hand, they're going through the new experience of staying at their paternal grandma's new house... and on the other hand, they'll also be tracing and discovering the old treasures and memories (mine, that is! :)) at their maternal grandma's kampung...

Nothing can be cooler than that, I think ;)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Letting go...

Today is Wesak Day. The first day of a three-day weekend.

Unlike the normal weekends, the house is pretty quiet today. Ayah is at work and will only probably be back around 4:00pm. No surprise there, huh?And Hanna is busy doing her revision for her Mid-Year. Or at least I HOPE she is revising in her room now. She has yet to come down today, not even to have her breakfast. I normally would just leave her to study in her own time and on her own terms, and with her own style of studying. It has worked well thus far, and she has been doing quite well in school. Hopefully she'll be fine, insya Allah.

As for the other two munchkins who have been the ones who would be making the noise and memeriahkan the house during weekends (and weekdays, too, for that matter) - Hasya and Hilman, they are away on a school camping trip in Sungkai, and will only be back tomorrow evening. It's for the school's Unit Beruniform. They've been having the programme for years now, and Hasya was supposed to go last year, but, I didn't let her.

We never had problems with Hanna going on overnight school trips before this, even when she was in Primary School. I guess because we knew that she was quite independent, and the fact that the first few trips that she went on, they were all made compulsory, and we could not say "No". So, after a few times, it was easier to let her go.

This time around I had decided to let Hasya and Hilman go on the overnight school trip even though it was not compulsory for them to go. I was quite reluctant initially, but, Ayah said we should just let them go. And after their pleads and "Pretty-pleases", I gave in and decided to let them join their friends on the trip - NOT without feeling anxious about it the whole time (and still feeling it now actually!). One of the reasons why I finally gave in was the fact that both of them will be there and can (should?) keep an eye on each other.

And the preparation for their first camping trip was quite an experience for me, too. The things that they needed to bring, included, inter alia -

Sleeping Bags

Selimut (on top of the sleeping bags?)

Insect Repellants

Baju and Seluar Sukan yang mencukupi (And how many pairs should that be?)

Cawan atau Gelas Plastik (and both insisted that they needed to bring BOTH?!)

Kasut yang sesuai untuk bersukan (Okay - does that mean ON TOP of their school shoes which they normally wear with their Pengakap and Tunas Puteri uniforms anyway?)



And because BOTH of them were going, whatever in the list that they didn't have, we had to go buy those stuff. TWO of each. So, TWO Sleeping Bags, and I went to get TWO types of Insect Repellants for EACH of them, TWO new pairs of Baju and Seluar Sukan each (on top of their existing ones), and new trainers for them as their old ones dah tak muat. I also got them a travelling toiletries set each.

And of course, I also added my own wajib items for them to bring along with them -

Panadol tablets for kids
Minyak Cap Kapak
Kool Fever Patches
Two pairs of normal clothings (even though it was not stated on the list)

And not forgetting some food supplies which included some Gardenia Butter Scotch Bread, Chipsmore Cookies, Tiger Biscuits, Some Pringles, and some Zip Chocolates for each of them. (Yup! This Mommy is worried they all tak cukup makan kat Camp nanti, especially anak bujang I yang memang kuat makan tu...Hehehe!)

The process of packing had started a few days before that. And Hasya insisted that the teachers had told them that they were not allowed to bring the normal handluggage type (with the rollers, etc.). So, everything was packed in duffel bags. One for Hasya, and one for Hilman. Two BIG duffel bags at that, too, as I didn't want them to bring too many bags with them. Even their sleeping bags could fit in them.

The arrangement was for me to send their camping bags to school on Thursday afternoon, when they would also hand their school bags for that day to bring home with me.

Came Thursday morning, after they had left for school, I made one last list check. Satisfied that they had everything they needed in the bags, I started to zip the bags up, and as with other things which could have only happened to me, the zippers to Hasya's bag just ripped open!!

It shouldn't be a major problem because we did have other bags which I could have transferred all her stuff to. But, I kept on hearing her voice insisting that they were not allowed to bring the normal roller bags.

So, this Mommy had to wait until 10:00a.m for the neighbourhood Midi Market to open. Went there, and they only had roller bags. Rushed to Te*co, and they only had roller bags. Rushed to OU. Oh yes - they do have duffel-like bags, BUT at over RM500/= each?!

Luckily one of them had some promotions going on, but, I had to walk a bit to an open area in one section of OU, and spent about 10 minutes searching for a good one at a relatively cheaper price. Found one which looked solid, selling at RM100 (after 50% discount). Aiyyyooo! Still quite expensive just to bring to a kid camping trip, I thought. But, I had no time to look for cheaper ones, and just pejam mata and paid for it.

Nasib baik lah Zaidy was driving me around, so, on the way to their school I managed to transfer all of Hasya's stuff to the new bag and we reached the school just before the bell rang. I was asked to send the bags up to the Hall while waiting for the kids.

The bell rang at 1:00p.m, and while waiting for Registration for the Camping Trip to start at 1:30p.m, the kids and I had lunch at the canteen. After lunch, I had to follow them up to the hall as I had to show Hasya her new bag and asked her to REALLY look at it and familiarize herself with it. Takut nanti dia tak kenal her own bag pulak lah kan?

And I was so worried if they (Hilman especially!) could not find any of the things that I've packed in their bags, and kept on telling them, "IF you cannot find any of the things, PLEASE check ALL the pockets, okay? They should be in one of them, okay?" I think I must have said that to them at least TEN times? THAT, on top of my pesan to brush their teeth and go to the toilet before they go to bed!

After registration and a briefing by the teachers, Hasya and Hilman salam-ed, hugged and kissed me and we bade farewell. They boarded the buses and I could see how excited they were. Hilman kept on looking at me, smiling and waving, while at the same time talking to his friends non-stop! But, I could see from his face that he was feeling a bit sad to go without me. While Hasya being Hasya, even if she was feeling sad, she was not showing it at all...

I had to leave before they bertolak as I had something on at the office at 3:15p.m. And as Zaidy drove me off, and as I glanced back at the bus they both were on, I felt a huge lump in my throat, and I was fighting back tears which had already welled up in my eyes...

And I said to myself... "Oh God. Ni baru camping trip nak gi Sungkai! How la nanti when they are really leaving home for good...?

Oh tidaaaaakkk...

...SOBS... :(

Saturday, May 22, 2010

How we spend our time together in the car... :)

One of the things that is common to maidless moms like me is that we could not leave the kids at home whenever we need to run errands outside, for me - especially at night when Zaidy, our driver, has gone home.

For instance, last Tuesday night - I had to send Hanna to her guitar class at OU, and I had to bring both Hasya and Hilman with us even though the class was just going to be for half an hour. And mind you, Hilman was having a slight fever and I would have preferred him to just stay at home and rest, but, NOPE - I still felt safer to angkut all of them sekali with me.

And last night, when I had to fetch Ayah back from the hospital - again, had to angkut everybody with me. Much to the dismay of Hilman and Hasya who were watching the final episode of MONK! And you could see how frustrated they were when we reached home at 10:00p.m and Monk had just ended, and they didn't know how the mystery was solved. Sorry, kids! :(

I even contemplated to bring them with me when I wanted to send the washloads to the laundrette last night, but decided against it as the place is just 3-4 minutes away from the house. So, I made sure I got back home within 12 minutes!

But, one thing I like about all this is that I get to spend more time with them in the car. Something that I've missed since Zaidy started working with us. And I like it even better when every now and then Ayah would also use the driver and not drive to work, and I would have to fetch him from the hospital when he's done. Like last night. The conversations in the car can be quite interesting and amusing when all of us are together :)

For instance -

Ayah : So*ha*dy (his doctor friend at work) has been promoting this game to me to be uploaded to my phone, It's called "Mo*ste*s and Pl*nts. But, you have to pay for it laaa...(FYI, Ayah and I only upload FREE stuff ajer so far :))

Me : What does it do? I mean, how do you play it?

Ayah : Apparently it's quite clever and interesting - the monsters will attack you, and you have to defend yourself by planting trees/plants around your house, and the trees will have all the ammunitions, like seeds and all for you to shoot the monsters with.

Me : And what do the monsters do?

Ayah : Oh they have several ways of penetrating into your defence - they can use polevaults, and....

And just at this point, Hanna butted in.

Hanna : Oh God, Ayah...Don't tell me that these are the things you and Uncle So*ha*dy talk about when you see each other at the hospital, please...(eyes rolling...)


Another conversation -

We were using the jalan belakang Sungei Buloh to go back from TMC to Sri Damansara last night, when Hilman saw the sign to go to Kuala Selangor, and he started asking -

Hilman : Mommy what other "Kualas" are there in Malaysia?

Hasya : There's Kuala Lumpur.

Me : Kuala Lipis, Kuala Kedah...

Hasya : Oh yes, Ayah's school - MC*K, in Kuala Kangsar.

There was about a 10 seconds silence, when suddenly, out of nowhere -

Ayah : Kuala Bear...

And the kids just started laughing uncontrollably!

I know...I was quite a LAME joke ("What do you expect from Ayah?" - the kids would say) but, the kids laughter was just contagious and all of us just started laughing! :)

Another one -

Hanna was just sharing with us some of the lame jokes she and her friends had come up with at school using their fingers and thumbs.

Hanna : If this is a "spear" (and she held up her index finger), what is this? (And she started moving the finger vigorusly to the left and right)

Us : Hmmmm...Dunno?

Hanna : SHAKEspear...


Hanna : Okay, okay...If this is a "lighter" (and she held up her right thumb), what is this? (And she started bringing the thumb up above her head).

Us : Dunno? (Obviously we just didn't want to think too much knowing how lame the answer was going to be!)

Hanna : HIGHlighter... :)

Hehehehe! :)

And she continued -

Hanna : Oh ya! Oh ya! Another one! Another one!

Us : Okay... (?)

Hanna : If these are your thumbs (And she held both thumbs up), what is this? (And she started moving her thumbs up and down alternately)

Me : ThumbDRIVE!!!

Hanna : LOL!!! Yup!!

And then Ayah exclaimed excitedly -

Ayah : Okay, okay! I have one! I have one!

Kids : Oh no!!...(eyes rolling...) (LOL!)

Ayah : If this is Hanna (and he put his index finger in front of us - and at this point the kids had started giggling already!), what is this?(And he slowly raised the finger up above his head)

Hanna : Oh Ayah...puhleeeaaazzz?!

None of us could give any answers!

Ayah : Give up? Give up?!

Kids : WHAT is that, Ayah?!!

Ayah - giving his victorious look as nobody could figure it out, then came out with this -

Ayah : Hanna SO HIGH LAAA.... *


But, we ended up laughing bagai nak rak anyway. NOT so much because we thought the joke was funny, but, more because of how lame the joke was!


Aaaahhh...I love spending time with the family in the car... :)

* For those who didn't know - Hanna's full name is Hanna SUHAILA ;)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Kids trivia :)

I was having tea at Ayah's niece's birthday do at Sa*ja*a KL with Hasya and Hilman this afternoon when both of them started to ask each other some trivias to test each other's general knowledge while at the same time throwing in a few riddles to each other.

Two of the questions, and answers which really cracked me up were these two :)

# 1

Hilman : Kak Ngah. What's the difference between painkillers and killer pain?

Hasya : Pain killers kill pain. Killer pain kills you!

HAHAHAHAHAHA! Good one, Hasya ;)

# 2

Hilman : Which planet is hotter, Kak Ngah? Venus or Mercury?

Hasya : I don't know. Mercury?

Hilman : No, Kak Ngah! Venus. Because Venus is Luuurrveee (with full expression)... and Luuurrve is HOT!

And I looked at Hilman and he looked at me, and both of us looked at Hasya, and the three of us just burst out laughing!


(Hmmmmmm...Should I be worried about the second trivia? I wonder...) :)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Good riddance...

Her name was Anis.

She was the replacement maid whom we got after four months of me being maidless in Sri Damansara. There was no contract between us. The deal was - we had to pay the introducer some RMxxx, and we pay Anis RMxxx every month. No strings attached.

Apparently she had been working on this modus operandi since 1997. She could go anytime she wanted, and we could terminate her service anytime we wanted.

We got her on 13 March 2010, and within a day of working with us, I got to know the A to Z of all her previous employers. Why she didn't like or liked working with them, why she left the job(s), etc.

The first two days, I found her to be too talkative, and as if she was laying down HER terms with me indirectly.

Example 1 - she told me that she once worked with a Chinese family who lived in a BIG house, but her job was easy because rumah "tu tak bersepah". And I felt that she was hinting at me that my house WAS bersepah! And I remember cursing underneath my breath - "Of courselah rumah aku bersepah, mangkuk! I had been maidless for nearly 4 months then. What do you expect?! It is YOUR job to unsepah my house, woman!!!

Example 2 - she told me that she once worked whereby she had to take care of an elderly couple, and she hated it.

Example 3 - she told me that she once worked with a family but, she didn't like the mother-in-law whom she said always "interfered" in her job. My take on this was that the MIL was not happy with the way the job was done by the maid around the house and was merely telling her on how to do things right. And she didn't like that. Indirectly telling me NOT to tell her what to do.

Example 4 - she told me that she once worked with a certain "Tan Sri", and the Tan Sri was really nice, but, she didn't like the Puan Sri because the Puan Sri was really fussy. Hinting to me that I should not be fussy like the Puan Sri (?!)

And the list goes on and on. You got my drift?

And on the second day, after telling me all her working experiences, while at the same time subtly "laying down all her terms" etc., she suddenly became very quiet and non-responsive! It was just so damn hard to get her to react or respond to any of our requests, etc.

She never uttered a word whenever I asked her or give her instructions on what to do and how to do things around the house.

Example - "Anis, bawang ini nanti, kamu tolong potong dadu, okay?"

And she would continue doing whatever she was doing (washing dishes, etc) without acknowledging what I had said to her. And I would then repeat myself again until I was sure that she actually heard me, and she then responded, "Iya, iya, kakak! Saya dengar tadi!" Sounding annoyed with me!

Many a times when my kids asked her for help, she would raise her voice and asked them to do the things themselves!

Example - Hilman would ask her where his baju sukan and seluar sukan were (as the maid would be the one who either washed/ironed/folded and kept them), and she would just tell him at the top of her voice, "Carilah sendiri dalam bilik!" And Hilman would come to me and tell me that he had tried looking for them at the normal places but he could not find them anywhere. And we then found his baju sukan and seluar sukan kept in his baju tidur drawers.

She would also tengking my kids if they put the cushions on the carpet while watching TV in the living room! What the...??!! My kids couldn't even lepak and enjoy watching TV at home! She even pushed Hasya's head once! Pantang nenek moyang I!!

And the third day she was with us, our ASTRO decoder ranap. We came back one evening and found the channel set/fixed at the "Pay Per View" Menu and we could not access any of the regular channels! The decoder ranap. The remote control also ranap!

And since she came, my microwave has also rosak and whatever mode we now use, it can never go beyond 59 seconds. So, if I need to cook something for 10 minutes, I would have to wait in front of the microwave and re-start it everytime it hits 59 seconds. So, that means 9 times of re-starting the damn thing over 10 minutes!

And I once found the blender LEAKING while she was using it!

I know some would say that I should understand that some of the maids had never used all the elctrical appliances, etc., and that is why we have to be patient with them while they learn how to use them.

But, this Anis surely could not use the same excuse as she had been working in Malaysia for the last 15 years!

And lagi satu pantang nenek moyang I - she suka sangat buang makanan!

Many a times I found rice and leftover lauk in the bin. And once I caught her pouring the Chicken Korma which I just cooked a couple of hours before that, into the sink. Mind you, there were still 4-5 chicken pieces left, with some potatoes and carrots in it! And when I asked her why she was throwing the korma which was still good, she said "Saya tak suka lauk ini!"

WTF?! I didn't cook the dish for you, you *&%$#!!*!! Even if you didn't like it, my family could still eat it, you *%^$#@!*!!!

Menggelegak hati I!! But, me being me - I just tegur with a slightly raised voice.

I guess, tu yang dia naik kepala tu!

She slept at 9:30p.m or latest - at 10:00p.m, irrespective of whether Ayah dah balik from work or not, or whether Ayah has had his dinner or not! So, Ayah being Ayah, he would normally come back after 10:00p.m, and I would set the table and prepare his dinner and later tidied up the kitchen, etc. A few times Ayah had asked me to just leave everything for the maid to do in the morning when she woke up. Sometimes I would do that. But, sometimes, if I larat, I would just clean everything up myself. Malas nak tengok sink with dirty dishes. But, if I was not up to it - I would just leave everything as it was. And the next morning you could see the maid tarik muka when she saw the dirty dishes.

She woke up at 5:30a.m every morning - the same time as me. And if you do your maths right, that would be EIGHT hours of sleep every night, whereas yours truly only got an average of 4 1/2 or 5 hours of sleep! Siapa yang boss sebenarnya, kan?

The only thing she did when she woke up would be to set the breakfast table, and dump the washing into the washing machine, while I do the cooking. She would then sweep and mop the floor while waiting for the washing cycle to finish, after which she would hang everything in the backyard.

I would leave for work around 9:00a.m, and most of the times the kids and I would only come home after 7:00p.m. That would be TEN hours of being left alone. TEN long hours alone at home while I was at work.

Apart from folding and ironing the clothes, you tell me what else would she be doing in that TEN hours...

She really got it easy working with us.

I also found her very rude and she had no respect for us.

But, I kept my patience as I fikir and bersyukur that at least she was helping me out around the house, and more importantly, she was doing the damn laundry for me - the whole package of washing, drying, folding and ironing for me! So, I tutup sebelah mata aje to some of the things which would have driven me up against the wall in a different circumstances.

It's true what they say - beggars can't be choosers...

Many a times I felt like firing her and sending her back to her SIL's place in Kg Sungai Kayu Ara (which is just sepelaung from our house!), but, selalu tak sampai hati coz' I pitied her as I knew that she needed the job and money. (And of course, I needed her to do my laundry, too ;)Hehehe!)

The kids didn't like her. They called her "The Wicked Witch" as she had this really shrieking high-pitched voice. Ayah didn't like her, too, simply because he felt that I was doing things around the house more than the maid did! But, he kept quiet as he knew that whatever it was, at least I had some help around the house.

The arrangement was for the maid to have cuti once in one or two months, so, I was not surprised when she suddenly told me last Friday that she wanted to go back to her SIL's place on Saturday, and that I could then fetch her on Sunday night. She TOLD me to send her at 1:00p.m on Saturday.

Came Saturday, Ayah and I and the kids took our time in the afternoon as we wanted to wait for Edisi 7 on NTV7 which was airing an interview I did on some current issues. We were just waiting in front of the telly when the maid suddenly came down the stairs and halfway down she just asked me "Kakak! Bila mau hantar saya balik?!"

Tak ke kurang ajar?! Why couldn't she come down and ask nicely instead of literally shouting at me from the staircase?!

Ayah masa tu dah meluap-luap dah, and if I hadn't been there, mau dah kena penampar Minah tu there and then!

We sengaja took our time after that because we were so bengang with the maid, and we only left the house at 2:15p.m after solat Zohor.

On the way, I asked her how much money she wanted for belanja. I offered to give her only RM400 and she insisted that I gave her her full gaji. Ayah was reluctant as he was afraid that the maid would run away and not come back.

But, for me, I'd rather pay her whatever wages she had earned, and if she decided to not come back, at least I didn't owe her anything. So, I gave her her one month pay (FYI, we had already given her half a month pay at the end of March, i.e exactly 2 weeks after she started working with us as she claimed that she needed to give the money to her brother who had to go back to Indonesia to berubat kena buatan orang, etc. Ladida dida... They can really come up with most amazing tales, kan?) But, well...

Anyway, we dropped her off at Kg Sg Kayu Ara on Saturday afternoon.

And on Sunday afternoon, I got this SMS from her -

"Assalamualikum! Kak saya anis, saya tak mau kerja lagi dg kakak. Saya tak dikasi sama kakak ipar...saya mau kerja restron"

And I tell you, I had never felt so relieved hearing the news that my maid was not coming back as I had felt then!

And when I told the kids the news, all of them gave a BIG "YEAYYYYYY!!!! Makcik Anis is not coming back ever!!! YEAAAAYYYY!!!"

The kids REALLY, REALLY, REALLY didn't like her. And mind you, our kids are not those type who are that particular about maids before this.

It feels so peaceful around the house now.

Bersepah a bit. But, VERY peaceful :)

GOOD RIDDANCE, I tell you :)

Monday, April 26, 2010


Today marks the 26th year of our cerita chenta :)

Happy 26th Anniversary, Saudara Haizal ;)

Love ya loads!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Lesser of two evils...?

The thing I discovered/realized since my "No-Rice" Lunch regime was that the lauk-pauk served and sold at the Cafeteria were/are giler salty!

It was not obvious before this, I guess, because I had always taken them with rice, and somehow they didn't taste THAT salty as the rice in a way had suppressed the taste.

But, eating the fish/chicken, etc., and the veges on their own REALLY brings out the saltiness of every single dish there was there that I've tried in the last one week or so. my attempt to cut down on sugar and carbo to avoid getting diabetes, I might just end up with hypertension instead...

Adakah ini tandanya I will have to bawak my own bekal from home from now on?


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"Minus-4 Mission"...

Remember last week when I decided to (re)start a healthier lifestyle?

Well, so far, so good. Syukur alhamdulillah.

I have actually worked out a schedule - for both my meals AND exercises, and have been sticking to it quite well. And if TERlanggar, I would somehow compensate it in some ways.

I have set a target for myself. I call it the "Minus-4 Mission" - i.e., I aim to shed 4kgs by 30th June 2010, and I have also called upon my MT gang to join me on this mission. It does not matter how much we weigh now. The target is for all of us to lose 4kgs.

And, I'm writing this down here as an affirmation to myself.

My regime consists of, inter alia -

(1) Rice-free lunch everyday. I've been taking extra proteins and veges instead (and my lunch costs more now!) :(

(2) Rice for dinner on alternate nights - I'm taking smaller portions than before, and will start taking brown rice this week.

(3) On nights that I'm not having rice, I take wholemeal bread - either by making myself sandwiches or dipping into whatever gravy we have at home, and proteins and veges.

(4) I'm taking more fruits now, too. Made some research on which fruits are okay for diabetics and found out that Grapefruits, Apples, Guavas and Cantaloupes are the best. And fruits to avoid include Mangoes and Bananas!

(5) I'm avoiding all sugary stuff (i.e. drinks and desserts) EXCEPT on Sundays - which I declare as my INDULGENCE DAY ;)

(6) And I've started going on the treadmill and the cross-trainer at home every morning before I go to work! YEAY!!! (They no longer serve as tempat gantung baju and place to store boxes! Hehehe!)

(7) AND I've started going to the gym again :) Had to pay RM99 last week to reactivate my Life Membership at Ce*eb*ty Fitness at OU. The last time I actually went for a workout there was 5 years ago! Quite pathetic considering OU tu is like my second home. Tersangatlah selalu melepak di situ, tapi tak terjejak kaki kat CF tu!! So, I'm making a point to go to the gym on nights when Hasya and Hilman are having their Mengaji at their Wan's house and Hanna has her guitar lessons at OU, and also when the kids are having their piano lessons. At least tak rasa guilty going to OU without them :)

And of course - this also gave me a good excuse to shop for new gym attires last week! Hehehe! Sempaaaaat... ;)

Ayah has also joined me on the meals regime, but have yet to join the exercise regime (although I know he gets a lot of exercises running around the hospital from morning till night!)

And after 7 days, I have managed to shed 0.5kg :)

The easiest part is to get rid of the excess water. It's shedding the fat after this which is going to be a major headache.

But, I know I can do this...

By 30th June, I WILL be 4kgs lighter.

Come. Join me! :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Biggest Losers...Insya Allah :)

Ayah and I were just talking about all the insurance coverage that we have for ourselves and the kids thus far, and we were thinking of getting new policies, especially for the kids, considering how high hospital charges can be sometimes. Of course, kita always do'akan we'll be healthy, and dijauhkan dari masuk hospital,etc., but, of course, we'll never know these things, kan?

The kids being minors, of course their policies would have to be either under Ayah or myself. And of course, at this age, most of the times, we as Payor would have to go through Medical check-ups before our applications would go through and be approved.

The thing is, it has been quite some time since I last went for a thorough Medical Check-up : the whole blood tests, etc., and frankly speaking I'm quite anxious to go through one now, for fear of discovering any illnesses. I know, it's rather strange coming from the wife of a doctor!

The thing is, I have quite a family health history on my Mom's side. Both my arwah maternal grandparents had diabetes, hypertension and heart problems/complications. My Mom is also diabetic (she's on insulin) and she had a stroke in 2004, and also a double angioplasty done on her 3 years back. All three of my brothers are diabetcs, too. So far, syukur alhamdulillah, my sisters and I have been spared.

On my Abah's side - my grandfather was also a diabetic, and he probably also had a heart problem. He passed away when my Abah was 12 years old. We have a photo of him at my parents' house. He was a BIG man, he was. My arwah grandmother pulak passed away 3 months after my grandfather. And we don't really know the cause of death.

As for my Abah, apart from his recurrence of nose cancer, and his hypertension (which came naturally with old age), syukur alhamdulillah, he's quite healthy.

But, I worry of course. Just in case, I might discover that I am diabetic, etc., too, after the Medical!

Ayah had wanted me to just do a self-test first, but, even that - I takut nak buat! So, the next best thing is to UP my efforts in jaga makan and exercising BEFORE (IF, that is) I'm called for a Medical lah kot?

And the efforts officially started yesterday.

Below are excerpts taken from my SMSs with Ayah yesterday after I came up with a regime which BOTH of us should follow religiously from now on -

Me : Treadmill n X-trainer at least 20 mins each everyday. Rice 4 dinner only, plain water from now on, n we indulge in sweets and stuff on Sundays only. Deal?

Ayah : Deal! :) P/S - Everyday? ;p

(See how sceptical he is of my willpower?!)

Me : Yes. Everyday. Hv 2 make time for daily execrcise now. Startg 2day. Don't wanna die b4 all kids get married! Who will uruskan their khenduri? Can't harap u 2 do it :p

Ayah : Whoa...dat's deep! Wokay then...Starting?

Me : Startg now. Jz puttg on my trainers :) Hope it's not too late!

Ayah : Have fun! :)

20 minutes later -

Me : Thx! 2 km done. Cals burned : 155. X-trainer next.

Ayah : Add a few more n u will reach TMC! :)

Half an hour later -

Me : Only went on X-trainer for 7.5 minutes. Giler semput!! Cals burned - 20 only! Huwaaaaa!!! :(

So, I was a bit disheartened yesterday, but, I did try to stick to the regime.

Masalahnya, I cooked Sweet and Sour Ketam, Sup Kepala Ikan Merah, and Lemon Chicken for lunch yesterday! In other words, it was quite a feast lah jugak!

But, to stick to the once a day Rice regime, I cooked Kuey Teow Goreng lah pulak for dinner!

And in between, I managed to squeeze in some Shortbread Cookies and Turkish Delights which Ayah got from one of his patients!

(But, actually I was still sticking to the regime, kan? Coz' in the deal - we are allowed to indulge in sweets on Sundays. And yesterday WAS Sunday, innit? ;) Hehehe!

Adakah ini tanda-tanda awal that the regime will go down the drain soon?! Kita tunggu dan lihat perkembangan Biggest Loser Sri Damansara, okay? ;)

Anyway, I'm off for my treadmill and X-trainer session now.

Wish me luck, and doa'kan that both Ayah and I can maintain and stick to the regime...(and by June, you'll get to see a healthier and slimmer and toner us, insya Allah :)

* And that reminds me - I'd better make full use of my membership at a certain fitness centre at One Utama. Life membership konon...but, the last time I worked out there was 5 years ago!!