My Ramblings

Lilypie Kids birthday Ticker

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

So Parlia wan ???

Something irked me today.  Very angry at that moment but I let it pass and got over it.

I was waiting for Amber at tuition, busy texting my friends on a crab dinner tonight. Hubs was talking to a prospect at the tuition class. Tuition teacher was listening to hubs proposal and talking to Amber at the same time. TT was a demure young lady.
I said 'was'... you'll  know why now .........

Amber was fidgety and as usual, boh-tiam ! It was almost 10pm and that girl had 2.5 hours of tuition work and naturally, she was tired and restless

TT kept asking her to speak in Mandarin and for this, I appreciate her efforts. I've asked her to speak to Amber in Mandarin to improve on her language.
Amber relented and spoke very loud. I have to say, Amber is loud. L-O-U-D !!  TT said something like.. ask you to speak Mandarin , you dun wan.. So parlia wan !

My antennaes ticked... parlia ?? did she just say parlia ??

Ohh kay,, I minded my own business, looking through her homework.. 2 seconds later.. again..
so parlia wan ??   I kept my cool...

Then she walked away to another room and giggled ... something about Amber and again...

so parlia wan ?

I asked hubs.. did I hear wrong ? I heard 'parlia' 3 times !!! Hubs - the blur also nodded and thought he heard her uttering 'parlia'

I kept my cool, I didn't want to confront her in front of Amber, otherwise the fart will learn a new word today and I can bet my last Ringgit, she WILL utter 'parlia' and will ask till no end, the meaning of the word..

For god's sake... SO PARLIA ???

Takes a parlia of the highest order to call another, parlia !

and what's parlia by the way ???  I searched and googled.. tak dapat wor...

Monday, October 25, 2010

To Go Or Not To Go

The kindie has arranged for a field trip to Vitagen factory. I must applaud the amount of effort the principal and teachers put in for the pre-schoolers. This is her K1 year and she had 1 excursion to the Deer Park/Science Center, 1 Sports Day at an external venue, 1 School Concert, also external venue and 2 PTA Meetings.

Back to the Vitagen factory. She earnestly told me about going to see people make Vitagen and yogurt and asked me to check the 'komikasion' book.. Communication book, she meant, but it was so funny hearing her spit the words koh-mee-kay-syen out slowly.. LOL !!

Anyways, she can't take Vitagen so what's the point of visiting the factory. Ain't it a bit torturing ? To have your cake and not eat it ?

Parents are invited with a small fee and that doesn't help either. Me, paying to visit the factory and holding back, not taking Vitagen ? Or be very very mean and sip the chilled Vitagen in her presence ? Nah... we'll have to come up with some excuses of not letting her go.

Let her sleep through it and not kill off her enthusiasm tonight.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Mince My Words

2 incidents happened and made me reflect my own words and actions. She's so smart and picks up everything we say and use it against us.

We were out at Thomas' car for dinner. She, me and little Sharon was seated at the back. She was restless and seated in the middle. In the midst of the motion, she accidentally knocked into Sharon. I said  'you hit Sharon'. I didn't mean hit as in deliberately but only accidentally.
She was defensive. No ! I did not !
I wanted to bring my point across and insisted she did and it was purely accidental.
She pointed out her fingers at me : I don't want to hear your sound !  (SHUDDUP !)

Hubs was changing her pyjamas. She was cranky and in a foul mood, runny nose,  missing her afternoon nap and after pushing herself to do a page of homework.
Some argument ensued.. something about her taking off her clothes and putting on her pyjamas.
She chided her father : You think I have 8 hands ah ??
Hubs was fuming mad !

I remember clearly telling her off one day,  when she had wanted me to do something immediately but I was busy and my hands were full.  I did tell her if she thought I was an octopus ! I also told hubs her one day, if only I was an octopus, I can do this, this and that and she overheard. I also remember asking her to keep quiet when I wanted to shut her up.

She's picking up all the bad words and phrases from us. *SIGH*

I hv to mince my words carefully now and that's so, so, sooooo darn hard !

Discovering Playgrounds

We discovered another nice well maintained playground, slightly further than the one that we went last week. We took her there to unwind after a whole afternoon of homework. Oh talking about homework, she has lots from her mental arithmetic class. I'm thinking twice if she should continue. Last week's homework was 5 pages of sums, with 48 equations in a page, total 240 equations, to be completed over a week. *PENGSAN*

Kids are kids, they need to play and let off the energy pent up inside. My girl has lots and lots of energy and we can't keep up with her. She's either physically active or verbally.  She can talk, she can yak and she can complain. She's complaining there's no place at home to run and she's right. Though we have a fairly big area but a home is not suitable for kid to run to their hearts content right ?

So, playground is still the best place. We took a walk uphill to the playground and along the way, the residents made us of the common area to plant some herb gardens, bananas, nangka and jambu. Very nice.

Armed with our sunnies, we walked uphill. errr.. i do look very big here...

Ms clumsy tots tripped and fell, and hubs was fast enough to catch a pic

mou see... mou see. just tighten the shoes a bit

see the bananas ? nice to be close to nature ya ? macam kat kampung.

amber . . oh amber.. yr moustache ruined a pretty picture.

the playground was at a housing area 700ft above sea level, adjacent to the Ulu Langat Forest Reserve. The air was crisp and cooling, plenty of nice houses here too.

she played on her own..

aahhh.. she's a happy gal

and we were happy too...we need some fresh air now and then, a change from our daily routine.

We'll be going outdoors with her more frequent. :D

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ooppss I Did It Again !

Remember my post on overzealous drinking ?

We all had a good laugh when goofy Amber was cupping  a piece of masak masak on her mouth. I was in the kitchen and didn't see it, when I saw, it was too late. Everyone was already laughing at her. Amber,  the attention seeking child, was showing off how she could cup a masak masak on her mouth. You see ! You see ! she asked everyone to see. Hubs, Thomas, Joanne and Sharon, who was visiting all saw but when the masak masak dropped, she looked like this :

Ooopps ! She did it again !  Coupled with a cold sore, her mouth looks very very red.

Being mean, as I always am, I jokingly told her.. her mouth looks like 'monkey backside'.. LOLOLOLLLL !!

So called Fiesta

The company had a fiesta for the staff yesterday. Us, being 'commision based contract workers' are excluded from most staff benefits. No complains about that as that's the usual industry practise. When the company organized a 'fiesta' and invited us, we happily put our names down and looked forward to enjoy the fun. I sneaked Amber in too.

Major regret !!! The fiesta was so badly organized. Everyone was given food vouchers for Stall # 1 to Stall #9 . That means we had to queue at Stall 1, then queue again at Stall 2 and so forth ! You think I made it to Stall 9 ?? I would have cursed myself stupid if I did that.

Firstly, there were only 2 food areas and the queues were long. At the stalls, some students were serving the food and don't bother about food quality, the 3 stalls that I made it do were serving barely edible food. Stall 1 had blazing red chilli fried rice, served with sambal.  Another had pizza slices so small, not even big enough a slice to feed preschoolers, and the pizzas were blank.. spread with tomato paste and nothing else.

Secondly, the stalls were served by some foreign students who can barely hold a spoon, Stall 1 had a guy scooping fried rice measured to perfection ! He almost had to mentally weigh each spoon of rice before placing on our plate. Hear me ? He used a spoon and not a ladle. For heavens sake when you have crowd of more than a thousand, for heavens heavens sake,, use a ladle and dang it.. scoop a ladle of rice on the plate for us, not measure spoon after spoon and after spoon before splashing sambal on the chilli fried rice.
Then, the pizza fella, had a side serving of salad with balsamic and vinegar..he served me 2 leaves !  2 tiny lettuce leaves !!! Can I ask for more ?? NO!  So I fished out another coupon from my hubs and I was given another 2 leaves !

I was so frustrating mad, I had to queue, get food for hubs who was managing Amber and queue again. I got hubs to take over and queue for the roti jala and curry chicken.. the chicken chunks, were small but edible. 1 coupon, 1 piece of roti jala and 1 chicken chunk ! No more, no less. Unfortunately, the roti jala was rancid.

That's it.. I left whatever coupon I had on the table and left. I doubt anyone picked it up. We donated RM20 for coupons to purchased goodies and we spent it on cotton candies and peanuts but that's ok, it's for charity anyway.

If only the banks were more charitable towards it's employees and feed us proper meals. Or perhaps the bank wants us to be grateful for what we have today and decides to feed us  catastrophic tsunami or some earthquake victims style with food coupons !

Amber was most happy coz she had balloons and cotton candies and we didn't force feed her.

No more company fiesta for me.. I'd rather siesta at home..:D

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Home Spa Series

I'm so obsessed with her bath time.. I must be one cuckoo mom. Then again, I am very very careful what to show and what not to. I don't want her to hate me when she grows up and sees her exposed photo on my blog

This home spa, I like.I have found a good use for my kaffir lime plants by adding it to her bath. The lime is flowering again and I think I could have at least 20 budding limes on the tree now. I can't wait to harvest them. I added a cut lime to some flowers I packed from the temple for shower purpose. Purportedly to cleanse her aura but I was secretly hoping it'll change Amber entirely, to listen to us 100% of the time, to complete here homework always, to eat well and yada yada yaaadaaa.. Fat hopes la Elaine.. don't wish for what you should not from the temple! Wellbeing and peace is sufficient.  :)

Our entire bath was smelling of kaffir lime and aitelyu, the smell lingers on, very lovely.

If the tub was big enough for me, I would have hopped in

Amber, Amber,, you see now how much Mummy loves you ? I do the things that makes you happy !

Friday, October 15, 2010

All About Her

Thanks for all your comforting comments on my previous post. I have replied you personally and it's just a small issue that we have to deal with and hope it'll be sorted out, eventually. Otherwise, I'll have to fall on my backup plan ( I hope not )

Hubs and I made a pact with her. We're giving her stars for good behaviour. 1 star for finishing her lunch, another for taking her nap and another for finishing her dinner fast. For each page of homework completed, 1 stars and the ad hoc stars for good behaviour etc etc etc.. She's all into stars now, counting her stars and making sure she is not shortchanged. She's very good in her mathematics and there's no way we can cheat a star from her. She's also good in bargaining, this girl. Once I stopped my car and refuse to budge until she swallow her last spoonful of dinner, which was in the mouth for more than 15 mins. Oh.. she loves to talk with her mouthful too. She bargained.. I swallow, you give me another star. At 4 and a half years old, this girl really knows how to bargain !!!

Back to her.  I made hubs promise to read his papers in the office and leave office as early as possible. On days that he needs to work out  his cardio, he goes running and I excercise at home, on our elliptical trainer. On non-workout days, it's Amber days. We make time for her, take her to the playground, even if it's for a shortwhile and we try to get some homework done too.

Yesterday, a typical evening but somehow when you have a timeline to follow, you tend to get your butt moving faster. I dropped hubs home at 5.45pm, asked him to bring in the laundry and I went to get some groceries. Quickly dashed home, cooked a beef bolognese, boiled pasta and cuts some fruits. By 6.30pm, we picked her up and went to a small playground just a walking distance from the childminders.

We drive pass this playground everyday for almost 2 years and yesterday we decided to stop for a short play. Sometimes the best stuff are found at our own backyard. Like how we used to fuss and hassle about making a trip to the playground that's a long drive away when a small, clean and well maintained playground is sufficient to bring her smiles.

We caught a beautiful view of the sunset yesterday

She chose the big kids swing and wanted us to stand behind and push her. I walked away when I thought she was doing fine and she cried.. loud and pitiful.. she's afraid.. it seems.. but I think it's another one of her dramas to get our attention.

She has a cold sore on her right lips.. Anybody knows the cure for cold sores ? Cold sore on a hot weather.. hmm.. sounds very very strange to me !

We stayed till dark.

We left when the moon was out.
Back home, while I prepared dinner and squeezed some fresh orange juice, hubs did some painting with her.
She also ate a kiwifruit.
 Yesterday evening was great. Some outdoor acitivities, some indoor activities, homecooked dinner, fresh juice and fruits for all.

I did an evaluation and reminded hubs that all she needs is undivided attention from us. Selfish as we are, we often overlook her needs and she comes home, creating havoc just to demand our attention. 

Another thing I noticed about Amber is to keep the evenings and days peaceful is to foresee a meltdown and avoid it. Hubs gave her a little lecture when this happened:

Hubs : Amber, drink your milk,, hubs holding the milk in his hand
Amber : nonchalant.. doing her own things
Hubs : Amber, come here, faster, drink your milk !
Amber : you come la..why you never put the straw closer to my mouth ???
Hubs : *explosion*

I was in the kitchen and analyzed the whole situation. The father was doing his job and the girl was being rude and wanting things his way.. *wong pa pa* style.
So, to avoid another argument with her, I told hubs.. he should foresee where she's coming at.. little missy is going to shoot some bullets to up our blood pressure again and instead, he should just put the cup of milk on the table and leave.

Many times, meltdown happens when we want her to do things our way, and she wants to do otherwise.

and many many many many times, we parents are to be blamed for not paying enough attention to her, the high needs child.  :D

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Difficult Tuesday

I woke up a bad day today. Angry, frustrated thoughts running through my mind.
Mostly about the childminder and her

I wish she is an obedient kid, we will not need to shout
I wish she'll finish her meals in time, we'll have more time to do other things
I wish she'll nap every afternoon, not disturb the other kids
I wish she'll listen more than talk, so as not exasperate the adults talking to her

I wish ! I wish ! I wish !

Maybe I've not done enough and that's the reason she is what she is today

Maybe I should be grateful, she is a healthy and hyper kid and not ask for too much.

But.. ain't all kids HYPER and deaf to instructions ????

Monday, October 11, 2010

Not Very Bento

Jacss gave Amber a small goodie bag of flannels and bento tools when she last visited us. I put the bento tool to use and the easiest bento trick I know is shaping the rice. I followed the sample instructions and shaped the rice into 3 designs - a bear, a boy and a dunnowhat (can't remember, and the end result is unrecognizable) I decorated with seaweed.

My very very bad art :

See the nose on the bear ? I had to stick 2 grain of rice to it.

I really need bento lessons from Annie Q.

However, the little missy went wuahhhhh... WUAHHHHH !!!!!
and that, made me feel proud of my very shoddy work.  :D

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Sambal Belacan

My waisek-ness got the better of me yesterday and I tried making my own sambal belacan. Sometime ago, I read Jomel's blog on sambal terasi and that, has got my saliva glands working overtime and talking to my brain that I really should go make my own sambal belacan. Cravings ! cravings !

My earliest memories of sambal belacan was those made by my good friend Liz's mom. She runs a chicken hor fun stall at Brickfields and is never stingy when it comes to ingredients. She'll fry the shallot oil for crispy and fragrant shallots to garnish the hor fun, something you hardly see now. Most stalls will buy prepacked shallots that lack oomph and I've read over the internet that some unscrupulous traders even add plastic straws when frying the shallots, so to maintain it's crispiness.

Back to Liz, her mom makes rocking kick ass sambal belacan. The ichiban stuff ! After she retired, Liz misses her mom's sambal very much and once her mom made her a tub to bring back to Singapore and she gave me some. That small pot of sambal belacan was devoured like gold, a little bit at a time,nothing wasted and the remnants of sambal juice will be wiped over with some white rice.

From thereon, I got hooked but could hardly ever find good sambal belacan, one that rocks the dining table, that is.

Worst are those so called sambal belacan or 'mah lai chan lat chiu' offered by many pan meen stalls. They are watered down and anything but belacan or sambal.

I bought 3 main ingredients - red chilli, kalamansi and cili padi from Giants yesterday. Added with some shallots, I gathered my bouquet ala sambal.. No need to follow recipe,, just agak agak, around 5 chillies, few sticks of chilli padi for the extra oomph, 3 shallots and a knob of belacan. I heard Malacca and Penang belacans aren't the same and mine was the Cheong Kim Chuan belacan I got from Penang last year. BIL claims the premium variety is very very fragrant and I used those. It was blackish and creamy and I toasted it till almost crispy and yes, its very very very fragrant. In fact my house stinks of belacan now, from the living room up to my bedroom, so you can imagine - this is GOOD STUFF !

Then came the big adventure. I was willing to make do with just average sambal by blending the sambal instead of tumbuk - or pounding - the traditional and 'a must' when making the belacan.

Firstly, I toasted the belacan till very dry and fragrant. Then, I used a mini chopper claimed from Cosway  - Empress brand. Set up everything, put in chilli and shallots and ready to  brrrrrrrrrr...
Dang ! that chopper didn't 'brrrrrrr' as expected. Checked power supply, ok. Everything ok, my chopper koyak-ed.. Can't believe the lousy chopper. So if you wanna redeem Empress mini chopper from Cosway, think twice, thrice.. and better still, just don't waste your coupons, this chopper is lousy !

So, I had to dig out my mini pestle and mortar and do it the hard traditional way. I soo miss Sopheak, my helper, while pounding. I never touched the pestle and mortar since the day she left. I had very nice thoughts of her while I was pounding the chilli. Then, the juice.. ter-PIAK up to my eyes. OMG !  chilli + onion + belacan juice in my eyes

At that point, I don't feel much burning yet. I took a tissue paper to wipe it off. Washed it and dripped cold Eye-Mo. Then I felt my eyes burning, so painful and I cursed myself for adding the few chilli padi !  Can't cry coz the eyes were already tearing. I wanted to cry Sopheak ! Sopheak ! pls come back !

I still went back to the pestle and mortar, but this time smarter, I wore my sunnies ! Slowly and patiently 'tumbuk-ed'.. I got these :

Add some salt and squeeze in a kalamansi, it's as good as a Nyonya's (ahem.. . .. gloating a bit here but that's what hubs said.. 'authentic and very Nyonya)

We had it with rice and tau yew bak (soya sauce pork)  :

 Braised tau yew bak I cooked the night before

and steaming hot rice and cold cucumber slices.

Lip smacking dish on a boring weekday night !

That's my first epi on sambal belacan and my good pal, Linda Phua has given me some 'petua' to improve on it. More to come.

but not until i get a bigger pestle and mortar or a good chopper.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Stewpid Act

It happened on Monday. Hubs and I had a long day at work and only got home around 9.30pm. I put Amber to bed close to 10.30pm and she suddenly asked me to clean her ears. I refused as I've already gave her a good cleaning 2 weeks ago. She has this thing about cleaning her ears and it gives her great satisfaction when I dig some gold from her ears.

She insisted her ears were very dirty and I pushed her aside almost wanted to scream "GO TO BED", NOW !!!

I don't know what made me gave in and checked her ears and  lo and behold !!!! a big ball of what seemed like dirt until I checked her ears under much proper lighting, I saw it was a small paper ball, stucked inside.

It's a sticker paper, she claims! I tried to use the ear wax remover stick to dig it out but didn't work. I had to tell hubs and the little one panicked.

Don't want ! Don't tell Papa, I want Mama to take it out for me !  She panicked and freaked out !

I screamed to hubs to come and take a look.

Hubs has 'lou far' and couldn't see properly the little ball inside. I used a tweezer and couldn't get it out either. I didn't want to risk pushing the tweezer further inside and causing a bigger mess and we decided to send her to the clinic.

At this point, hubs was very very angry with her and shouted at her for such a STUPID ACT ! He cannot believe his 4 year old would do such a stupid thing to stuff things inside her ears. Totally stupid !

I think for the first time, the word "STUPID" is shout out aloud at our home.

Apparently, she put it in the ears while taking her afternoon nap, and she had to wait for so many hours before telling someone.

Hubs was fuming and couldn't believe his 4 yr old can do such a thing. Frankly I didn't either. I expected better from her.

We said if the clinic cannot take it out, we'll have to send her to hospital and get her ear cut off to remove the paper ball.. and she'll end up looking like Frankenstein with stitches all over her face and she can never look pretty anymore.

WUAHHHH !!! she wailed and wailed and refused to go to the doctors.

You know how it's like when you have an opportunity to scold and teach her a lesson she'll remember, make sure SHE WILL REMEMBER !!! So... must exaggerate and blow up into a big Oscar winning drama !

I also threatened that if she does not get it removed, she'll lose her hearing, she can't listen to Michael Jackson and Justin Bieber anymore. Her world will be 'blank'

I almost wanted to laugh when I saw her pale face, her horrified look but the hubs was otherwise, still fuming from her stupid act.

And so, we went to the 24 hour clinic. We did silly things like ask for the doctors age and his eyesight. Hubs was worried the doctor will have long sighted like him and cannot see the paper ball properly. The nurse also said they weren't sure if they could get it out and we might have to go to a ENT instead. Our better judgment told us to go straight to the hospital instead and by then it was almost close to midnight.

There was a long queue at the A&E and it's not a pretty sight with a room full of very sick patients. The little fart was very quiet and I warned her many many times not to move when doctor removes her mess ! When it was her turn, we made her tell the doctor exactly what happened and the doctor almost wanted to laugh at her innocent horrified face.  He used a very narrow tweezer to pinch the paper ball out. It was soo small, around 0.5cm in diameter.

She was also found to have reddish ear and throat and enlarged lymph nodes, signs of  an infection underway  but not related to the paper-ball-in-the-ear incident. She was sent home with some antibiotics and fever medicine.

I kept the paper ball with me and asked if she wanted it.. maybe to stuff her ears again, stuff her nose *in a jest of course*

DON'T WANT !!!! DON'T WANT !!!!  she wailed.....

... and reached home close to 2 am !

I hope she learns a lesson she'll remember this time !

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Concert

Last Saturday was her Concert Day. A day waited in anticipation and excitement. Her class had 2 performances. Half of the kids danced to 'Raindrops' and Amber's team danced to Justin Bieber's Eenie Meenie. It was because of her concert that hubs got a Justin Bieber's cd , getting hubs to buy a pop cd is unheard of but this daddy will do anything for her baby.

We got up early, dressed her up 'carefully'. Her costume's fabric wasn't quite comfortable and I had to make sure she doesn't itch and cry her heart out during performance. I sewed pipings on the joints of her top and I put on shorts for her to cover over her tummy, so the garters do not pull on her tummy but on the shorts instead. I also put on lotion, followed by powder, carefully on her body.  The hubs was responsible for the camera. Both of us were as excited and we were just like little kids again, waking up early, changing, packing and screaming at each other for being late.

I'd say we were both proud parents sending our little kid off to school for her concert. She is to arrive early, the teachers will put on make up, prep them up and they'll all go to the concert venue in a school bus. We parents, made our way to the venue on our own. When arrived just in time as the kids and I nearly wanted to cry when I saw her. Our little baby, the fart I've been carrying in my arms since birth, breastfeeding her, changing her diapers, helping her toddle, guiding her walking,  is now a little girl, with make up and all and getting ready to perform on stage too.

Our baby is no longer a baby!!!  You know the feeling ? The feeling of watching your little baby do all things adult, dancing, dressing and making up. Makes me wanna cry. I'm sure many moms feel the same.
I'll let the pics do the talking of the day we had  :

Dressing her up for the concert.

Arriving at the location, with make up and prepped up with bling bling hairbands and all

She was a proud little girl as we were the few parents there early, greeting them and she was all SMILES.

The concert started with the kids and parents singing Negaraku. 

Her performance was dance #6 and before the dance started she waved at us.. Mama !!! Papaa !! Take more picture ok ?? she called.. 

Justin Bieber... Eenie Meenie

Miniee moe lover

Then the concert ended and they sang the school song. Amber was all smiles again, she knew her Papa was taking photos of her.

Here she is with Sharon, both of them had so much fun and we almost didn't want the concert to end.
 The principal, teachers and assistants did a great job. Took them months and months of hardwork to realise a 2 hour performance. The school took a well deserved break today.