Sunday, December 23, 2012

countdown to Christmas

Our tree is up ...and all the presents are wrapped ...all that is left to do is to enjoy Christmas with my family

Umang and her parents are spending Christmas here with us, and with their arrival, our family are complete ...everyone under the same roof ..and that really makes my parents happy ...

will be leaving for the cottage soon - and will update more on our christmas countdown later :-) it will be Umang's first Christmas ... and my last christmas in my 30s hehehehe ....

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Surprise Farewell Party

I am utterly and completely shocked students organised a surprise farewell party for me and I was not aware of it ...I thought I was attending a party to mark their end of the semester, a party to celebrate the end of classes and before the final exam ..liitle did I know, I was the guest of honour!

they have cakes, and speeches and all that - I am so honoured an touched by it all ..all the other lecturers from my programme knew about it, but no one let the cat out of the bag ...even the Dean was in the know ...

they even prepared a performance segment lol very entertaining ..these guys are so funny ...making jokes and all that, and their song choices are awesome ...said that they chose "I will survive" as one of the songs, just to let me know that they will survive till the end of their course no matter what, and so that I do not have to worry about them - how sweet!!! I am so touched by their kind words, wishes and determination ...

and I took my nephew with me to the party - he gets on well with the guys!

Actually, I have been teaching this class for two semester - one of the most interactive groups that I have taught in this uni ...they would argued their points relentlessly, and willing to debate the issues. These sort of interactions are very lively and I do hope that they will remain like this in their other classes ...i sincerely hope that I have given them some knowledge that would be useful for them ...sometime they tested my patience, but most of the time they are ok. just a typical undergraduates ...Just have to remind myself that I was young once, and I was one of those who often skipped class, mischiveous and what not ...

Guys & girls - thank you so much for the wonderful surprise. It is not something that I'll forget :-) and may all of you be successful in your chosen careers ..Thank you!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Medical Check Up for the purpose of student visa (NZ) application

ooolaalaaa ..i had a double date a few weeks ago, had a date with a GP in the morning and another date with a dentist in the afternoon ..not the pleasure-kind of day, but more to the "have-to-see-them" kind of dates ....and those who  know me, knows that I hate doctors and dentists I equate them with sickness and pain! but that day, it was the dates that I could not avoid

the first date was with Dr Robert from Asia Clinic ..his clinic is listed as panel clinic under the NZ Immigration Dept - so, I have to get my medical clearance from him in order to apply for my student visa time was running out, i had no choice but to go that day (as I was leaving for my Kapit field trip the very next day)..the forms by the NZ Immigration was more comprehensive than those required by KPT (for sponsorship purposes). I actually thought that I can re-use my medical result from my previos medical check-up (done a month earlier for KPT) ..but NOOOOOO it was not to be NZ Immigration only wants the medical check up to be done by their list of panel doctors ...hence, my visit to Asia Clinic

had my weight, height, abdomen, eye etc tested ...also had to do blood test, urine test - the whole works ....but the great thing about this clinic is that it is very efficient... the whole process took less than 25 minutes ...and there was only two other people in the queue in front of me that morning ....the only scary thing for me was when the doctor was about to draw my blood! I absolutely hate it ...but the doctor was so serious (reminded me of my dad's stern face) that I was afraid of making a sound, so i just clenched my hands and tightly squeezed my eyes shut! till he said it is all done ...the nurse was smiling when I finally opened my eyes (bet she knew how scared I was) ....that was that ..and I was told to come again at the clinic to pick up the result in two days ..and for me to go to Normah Specialist Hosp to get my x-ray done ...

after the dreaded blood test!

I drove straight to Normah Hosp after that ..I had not had anything to eat since midnight and by the time I was on the way to Normah, I was shaking with hunger ..stopped by a cafe for some kueh and to eat whilst driving ...and when I reached Normah, it was after 11am ...the car park was full and the queue at the Radiology Dept was long ...was finally done by 1.00pm ....

was still eating inside the car while this photo was taken #famished

The result was great pronounced medically fit (except that my cholestrol level is a bit on the high side)....and got the reports back upon my return from ny Kapit trip.

So, a note for those who are applying for a student visa to NZ, you will need to provide a completed medical form and chest x-ray form - which can only be filled by their recognised panel doctors. In Kuching, there are only two clinics listed in the NZ Immigration, and one of them is Asia Clinic (Padungan - located on the row in front of Country Kitchen). The total cost for medical check-up (inc the x-ray at Normah is RM350) and must allow 2-3 working days before you get your results. Both the medical forms and x-ray form can be downloaded from NZ Immigration website :-) You also need to include in the forms 3 passport-sized photographs as well ...

and another important reminder is that you must bring your passport with you when you are doing these medical check up ...and the doctor and radiologist have to see the passport for verification of identity :-)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Shopping for dad

last saturday we went shopping for dad ....he has been asking us to accompany him but I was always too busy...till mum reminded me about dad's plan ...actually dad was at the point of sulking coz he thought that we are not paying him any attention :-(

dad got his early Christmas present

but truth be told, i think we (the children) are, to a certain extend, just focus on our own timetables, and ignoring his needs, or request. we just assume that he is as capable as he was before. On my part, I always see my dad as this very independent person, who is very organised and just go for what he wants ...he seldom request things from us, he is always quiet and contend with what he does ..he is the one we go to when we are in trouble...he is quiet but he gives sound advice ....someone we rely on very much and the one who provide us with basic grounding to life.....along the way, I forget that he is getting old (he retired in Jan 2003 at the age of 55 years old) ...i forget that he may need us more now than before ..and that he might feel "useless" as he is no longer working / earning and have to rely on us for something ....i mean, he is financially independent, never ask a penny from us fact he is the one who give money to the grandkids ...and the one who pay for the utilities bills in my house (he insisted!) my dad's case, he is relying on us to chauffer him around Kuching ...he admits that his reflexes are not as fast as before, and he does not want to drive in Kuching, where the cars are just everywhere ....he would still drives himself to Sri Aman and the cottage and the longhouses as those routes have less traffic ....

A friend of my said, she also faces similar situation with her dad. The more she tried to take care of her dad, the more her dad rebels ...the dad said, he felt very useless and he is not allowed to do anything anymore that same friend advised me to just let my dad does anything he wants, and tried not to restrict his movement ...and to ask them, from time to time, to help me with something - so that he will be useful again is something that I never thought of myself...I just want to take care of them ,and put them in a bubble wrap ...and do nothing i feel that it is high time we, the children, are looking after him ...but I never realise that the parents might construe the situation differently ....

I hope I will have more time with my dad (and my mum too, of course) ...i could not imagine my life without him ....and leaving in January is hard for me now that my dad is unwell ...i hope, and pray that he is blessed with good health, happiness and longevity ...I love you dad!!! I may not say it often, but I do ....

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Adik - then and now

was browsing the lappy to get photos of adik ...I am in the process of selecting photos to be printed off ..and also thinking of having a photobook made to document certain phases of our Adik's and Al's early years ...our family holidays and what nots parents are not satisfied of having pictures of their grandkids in digital form, they prefer the hardcopy versions - in the albums!

anyway, found these pictures of adik ....i think he was 1 year old at this time ..some photos are blurry as they were taken using my mobile at the time ....and what strikes me was that Adik does not change much over the years ....

and also, we noticed that most of adik's clothes are RED ...hahahaha suits him very well as he is fair ....his favourite colour which I started on him since he was born. I always, without fail, will buy him several red item of clothing for every special occassion - birthdays, christmas, gawai and what not .....i really think red suits him :-) power colour gitu ...

it was the, and here's the "now" pictures (taken in 2012):

he is a big boy now ...and a very cheeky one at that! He is somewhat impatient (like me) ...and he can definitely imitate my mulut muncung! In fact, his mulut muncung is so me that my closest family notice and often commented on ...hahaha a boy after my own heart :-) His daddy often said that he is mama's little boy coz he always run to mama for help, he always look for mama when things dont go his way, and his tantrum is very much similar to mama ....i think the next step is to introduce adik to Uncle Fendi and Aunty Liz - so they can verify if adik's mulut juih is similar to mine ...hahahaha

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Adik's schooling experience

It has been 3 weeks since adik started at his pre-school ...we actually planned to send him to school next year but when Jane met up with the principal, she suggested that Adik start in November there was some slot free ...adik went to a pre-school which specialised in behavioural interventioan ...he has speech delay and upon advice from various professional people, we send him to this school ...we were given a list of names, but we found this one to be the most convenient for us ...and when we checked out the place, we found that we like its structure and the staffs there are very friendly and professional ...and they do not enroll students all at once, it is a staggered process .....since, there was a free slot in November, we immediately took it ....

a bit sullen on his first day ...hehehe he was not used to waking up early!

we were all apprehensive about his first day, knowing that Adik is a bit shy and always avoid strangers will he cope in a room full of strangers, and not one familiar face around??? those were the questions that we have ...but, God knows best ...and adik actually coped extremely well on his first day ....we were the ones who have extreme traumatic stresses on that day!

Like i said earlier, it has been three week already ...we are happy to note that adik has made tremendous progress ...the teachers are telling me that he did well in school ...he even mix around with the older kids, play together etc .....and his anxiety attack is less than before ...he is able to stay the whole 3 hours in the school with people who are not familiar to him ...dont get me wrong, he has his  good days and bad days ...there are days that he will cry when daddy drops him off ...but the teacher said he would cry on and off for 30 mins and after that he will be ok ...and there are days when he would wave his daddy off and be independent ....essentially he is coping really well ...much better than we has expected is a long way to go, but at least he has taken the first steps ....

during my school run day ...

the decision to send him to school which is a bit far from home was agreed by everyone in the family ...we recognised that there will be times when mummy or daddy will be unable to pick him up ...due to their work commitment, me and my parents are helping anyway we could ...for now, I am helping to pick him up from school ...alternate days with mummy depending on our schedules ...while my dad picks up Al from his school is not easy as everybody has their own work schedule, but for his sake, we are making these arrangements between us ....we love him so much and we pray that these schooling experience will be useful to him in the longrun ....and from this three week, progress can be seen so proud of my little hero!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

passport renewed! Hassle free @ Simpang Tiga

Renewed my passport 2 weeks ago. Glad to have it finally settled. Have been procastinating actually, coz my passport expires in June 2013, but as I need to get my visa sorted, I have to renew it earlier ....i thought i would loose the 7 months left from that passport ....but, it was not the case...i only loose a month! As the remaining 6 months was added to the new passport ...yipeee!!!!

one of the reasons I procastinated with my passport renewal is because I just hate to queue up ...i mean, all these while (hahahaha every 3 to 5 years lah )we have to queue up in order to renew the passport right ...and there are sometime the case of "over-efficiency" (NOT) of the staffs manning Malaysian public service counters ....tak semua, tapi banyak lah kes kes yang dilalui macam tu the office at Simpang Tiga is notorious for its limited parking spaces. But, as the dateline is drawing near, I had no choice but to get it done, took the day off to get it done .....

Went there on Thursday afternoon, and found the queue was up to the door and it was a double queue! Went to the information desk to get the forms, and was told I have 3 options (i) renew it using the KIPPAS kiosk on the ground floor; and I can get the passport within 2-3 hours; (ii) renew using online application - so that I dont have to queue; and (iii) wait patiently and that could take hours, I choose option 1 ...beat the queue to the door ...found the kiosk on the ground floor, and there was only 3 person in front of me! The whole process took less that 10 minutes - provided you have all the required documents ready ....very fast and efficient!  I never knew this KIPPAS kiosk existed, but now gladly recommended to Malaysians who want to renew their passport to use them - very quick, and hassle free ...but you must bring these items with you at the kiosk:

(i) the passport that you want to renew;
(ii) a photocopy of your Identity Card;
(iii) your original Identity Card;
(iv) a passport sized photograph - must be a recent one, and should not be the same one as used in your old (or to be renewed) passport;
(v) cash - it was RM300 for a 5 year renewal or RM100 for two year renewal

then after you are through with the renewal, the staff will take your documents and he/she will tell you when your passport can be collected. Mine was ready in 2 hours but I dont want to wait - so i collected mine the following day .....again, it was hassle free (very pleasant surprise!) and took me less than 5 minutes took me longer to find a parking spot there!

so, there you go we have options when it comes to avoiding queues when renewing passport - a good thing indeed! 

 so, have passport - will travel ...hehehehehe

Monday, November 19, 2012

my little heroes

People always made a mistake when they saw me with the boys ....even my aquaitances whom I knew through FB or twitter made the same mistakes ...they thought these two monkeys are my sons ...well, they are actually my nephews but i have been taking care of them since they are little ....especially when their mummy and daddy were working outside Sarawak a couple of years ago ....mummy was in Ridyah for a year, and at the same time daddy was in KL ....but the boys stayed with me in Kuching, yeah, in my heart, I consider them as my own :-)

my manja boy, Airell

my cheeky monkey, Alistair

I was talking to a group of friends from the office a couple of weeks ago, and they said that they have stumbled upon my 30-something blog, and were among the silent readers ...hehehe thanks guys (said they prefer the BM version!) ..and one of them said your sons are cute...are you taking them with you to NZ? I told her that these are my nephews and she was so surprised ...said she always assumed they are my sons ...afterall, they called me mama, and we were very close .....deep down in my heart, these monkeys are more than my nephews them like my own! definitely going to miss them terribly next year when I am gone ......

Friday, November 9, 2012

lady in black?

some photos taken at our office gatherings ...

this was earlier in the year during Gawai celebration at our faculty usual I am wearing black - my official office attire according to some people :-)

during Raya celebration at Uni level ...I am not wearing black as the event was held outdoor :-)

during Students' Annual Dinner (again wearing black!)

after Faculty Retreat - hahahaha again was in black (with green cardy!)

and it struck me that I was always in black! Someone pointed it out to me before but I thought he was joking. But looking back at all these photos, most of my outfit is black ....i only ever use other colours on top of my black outfit - like a cardigan, a shawl, or bright accessories like necklace and bags and shoes ....

pas nie jadi budak itam le nampak nyer :-)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

playtime at school

Jane left her camera at school last Thursday and the teachers took a few photos of Al and his friends during school time. That day Al requests for a cake for his teachers and friends (i wrote it in the other blog - malas nak ulang here) ..and since he has been behaving recently, (read: no fuss when it comes to going to school, homework done, doing extra work at home without being prompted) we decided to indulge him ...

the photos were a revelation to us shows us the side of Al that we seldom see ...of him interacting with his classmates happy he was with the other kids ... and what their activities are at school ...

he looks so happy at school ... and to think that we were so apprehensive to let him go to school at the beginning of the year! How we thought that, since he is a shy boy, that it would not be easy for him to mix around with the other kids  ....but, it has turned out very well the next couple of weeks, they will be having a long school break ....and that will mark the end of Al's first year at kindy :-)

accommodation sorted

yeayyyyy finally got my accommodation in NZ sorted. And I have exactly 3 months to go before I uproot myself from home, from my comfort zone, from all things familiar, having my accommodation sorted is a relief - not just to me, but to my family. Mum and dad, in particular, are worried (though they don't say it out loud) about me leaving home again. I guess they are so used to having me round after my last (long) stint abroad the last time, knowing that I have already secure a place is somewhat a relief to them Dad said, despite my age, I am still his little girl - hehehe and being the eldest has its previleges!

I opted to stay at uni accommodation - at least for this first year. It is a bit pricey compared to renting a room or flatting outside of campus. But, I just want something which is convenient for me - a roof over my head, a place that is within walking distance to the office and library, that has all the basic facilities - heating, laundry facilities and internet included in the rent!Saw a map of the area, and apparently my flat will be very near to my office and library ...and library is facing the harbour! So the views will be awesome!!!

on the down side, it is a flat shared by 4-5 people ... sharing with strangers can be tough if you cannot get along. But, am thinking positive the uni asked us to fill in a preference form - to gauge our compatibility with future flatmates should be ok kot! It is not like I have never been in that situation before ...all my uni days in Newcastle before were spent in uni accommodation, it is going back to similar environment ...goes with the territory I suppose ....

whatever it is, i know I will be missing my bed, my room, my house ......and mom's cooking! but hey, it is my choice to go to NZ, so just have to toughen it out for the next 3-4 years ...

"When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it."
 - Henry Ford 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Dresses for lil Umang

got something for Umang ....since my mom is going to KL in 2 weeks time, I decided to get Umang something ...i have not get her anything since she was 1 month old :-) so, last weekend, i took mom and dad to the shop and get something for Umang ...seriously, shopping for baby girl is soooooo fun! so many things to choose from, so many colours, so many patterns and so many accessories ...... but dad put a stop to my unstoppable spending ...said I can only get one dress as Umang is such a fast-growing baby, better to get her a few things first, and get her Christmas gifts nearer to the time ...well, point taken dad!

i bought the sleeveless white dress...and my dad bought that pink short cardigan ....said better not expose Umang's bare back! when I told my sister, she said that she had the right hair band for this dress lol i think she has hairbands in all colours imaginable at the rate she's buying these things online!

then my brother also shows us the dress that she got for Umang during his trip to Singapore recently ...very girly and princess like! We just love to shop for little girls :-)

complete with a matching hat and bracelet!

we have been saying that it is so hard to choose for girls when it come to clothes many choices ..furthermore, Umang is our first neice, so we tend to go overboard buying thins for her ....but for Christmas, we already got a message from her mommy that we should not get her more clothes, instead we were told to get some toys .....i am sure that I will be buying her dresses as well ..i mean, who can resist pretty clothes right?

for my boys, I still dont know what to get them ...I may be going to Toys r Us soon to survey what is available...Alistair is so into his train set now, I might buy him and adik some train sets, and maybe a couple of shirts ...and books that both are attending school, I think books are the best gifts encourage them to read :-) (well, one can only hopes!)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

craving mode: pamelo salad

it is one of those cravings ...out of the blue i have this craving for pamelo salad ...i have not had the dish for over a year, but suddenly last night i was salivating at the thought of pamelo salad ..its tartness and the sweetness are oooo so yummy ...the problem is I dont have any pamelo at home! desperate punya pasal, called my cousin at the longhouse and ask them whether the pamelo tree at the cottage had bear fruits or not, or whether it is ripe enough to pluck ...and the answer is yes, there are a few fruits at the orchard, but no, it is not ripe enough for plucking! Punah harapan jap ....

the one I made earlier (years earlier lol)

Fear not, I am so determined to get this elusive fruit, am going to pasar tani this weekend to get it, and pamelo salad will be the dish of the weekend! couldn't wait!

last night we had a sumptuous tapau dinner Fendi said, I went overboard (probably because I was hungry when I ordered the food) called me to ask me to get some takeaway dinner coz mum was not feeling well, i stopped by my favourite seafood restaurant to get some of their yummy dishes ...alang2 menapau, biar tapau yang terbaik! ended up with calamari dish (sotong masak telur masin), baby kailan braised with garlic, braised tofu with all the trimmings, chicken in dried chillies mix, and seacucumber soup ...the soup is my mum's all time favourite, so something hot for her to sip since she didn't want to have any rice last night .... and it was way too much, ended up as leftover which we (my parents and I) had for lunch just now usual, nafsu makan mengatasi segala2nya ....nasib baik tak membazir!

am getting home late tonight as I have to invigilate a mid-term exam (my own paper)..but my SIL already texted saying that she will get some take away meals for us for dinner that mum can rest. And knowing my SIL, am sure tonight's meal will be veggie-less she hates vegetables! macam macam hehehehe

Friday, October 19, 2012

hairband obsession

My sister is very obsessed with hair accessories right now ...not for herself, but for her baby! She was the one who was adament that nobody should get her daughter anything in pink as she hates pink and considered it as too girlish ...i was warned very early on not to get Umang anything pink ...or not to get Umang anything with frills or any girlish accessories ....all the warning did not affect our judgement ...i bought Umang tonnes of pinkish rompers, and clothes brother and SIL also did the same, we just ignore the mother's request (ON PURPOSE!!!) and my dad was the one who said that we should just ignore my sister's request :-)

that is why we were so surprised when my sister started buying hairbands and other hair accessories for dear Umang ...and not just one, or two pieces ...but A LOT! she even texted me to hint that if i were thinking of getting Umang some Christmas present, I may like to get some hair pieces to complement the dress ...shocking! a complete 360 degree change for someone who dislike pink and dislike girly outfit ....

my sister sent me the above photo for hints! LOL so I asked her why the change of heart. her answer is hilarious! She said she is treating Umang like her doll and she just love to doll her up ...hehehe and she said, Umang might not like being dolled up when she grows up, so now is her only chance to make her daughter looks pretty! Hilarious ...but dad said that, having a mother who is a tad tomboyish - dislike skirts, girlish outfit and hates pink - there is a slight chance that Umang may inherit that taste in the future ...

looking back when we grew up, I was always the one in skirts and dresses and proper girly shoes sister was so into denims, shorts and t-shirt ....but people change kan .. and it is great to see Umang being dolled up hehehe i just love going shopping for her many girly clothes to choose from shopping this year should be more fun!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Excuses excuses

My nephew is at it again .... he was so cranky this morning, just because he didn't want to wake up to go to school ...said he rather sleep and watch tv than getting up ....some days he is ok, but there are days when you literally have to drag him into the bathroom ...and the bad guy who always have to play this "dirty cop" is non other than myself! His mummy will not do anything as she will be the one who will console him after I forces the 5-year old to brush his teeth, and have his shower parts end after supervising the shower! and mummy will take over then Al will be ok and not sleepy anymore

Now I found a new tactic to get him to up quickly .... i will pretend to call his teacher to say that my nephew is sleeping and doesnt want to get up ....he will automatically get up if he saw me (pretending) looking for my mobile phone ....he knows that I have the teacher's number coz he heard me calling the teacher one day a couple of months ago when he was absent (due to flu at that time) ... now that tactic seems to work, I am planning on using that every if I have to wake him up!

before this, the only tactic that works is by bribing him ..told him that if he gets up early, and get ready by 7.45am, he can play with my iPad whilst having his breakfast ...that works wonderfully for about 3 months ...before that I used to bribe him with cold milo ...promised him that if he goes to school or do his homework, I will take him to the corner shop not far from our place so that he can choose his own milo drink from the fridge ....

but he is such a cheeky boy ....i told him that he did brilliantly in his spelling tasks that I should reward him ...and I told him I will take him out for ice-cream as a treat ...he was jumping up and down saying thank you mama you mama .....over and over again touched! So, I took him out last Saturday to McD (his fav ice-cream is choc sundae) but the cheecky boy said he wanted chicken nuggets, french fries and cold milo as well ...and when he finished all of that, then and only then, he requested for an ice-cream ....clever huh? i promised him dessert but he negotiated for a whole meal inc dessert!

and he is only 5 years old ...pas nie apa dia nak mintak tak tau lah ......

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

busy mode - PhD preparation

i have been very busy lately that i dont have time to update anything here ...the good news is that, I will be officially on study leave effective 1st Feb next year ...i was supposed to start last September but due to short notice from the sponsor, and a request from my supervisor, I defer my start date to feb, still have another 4 months - give or take - to enjoy life at home ...

the not so good news is that I am swamped with documents ...that need to be signed, initialed etc etc and the dateline given was very short ....i have to sign 2 different agreement with two different sponsors, have to find two guarantors (luckily I roped in my siblings!) but since my sister lives in KL, i have to courier documents to and fro for that purpose ...and my brother is now in Singapore for a conference, and he forgot to give me his IC! and my documents are due this coming friday stressful ....

then the medical check up ...had to do it last week...i have been delaying it for a while ..coz of the haze, I have been coughing non-stop, and i was asked to wait till my cough is better ...and I am one of those person who hates hospital and anything related to a syringe! but, i had to do it, so cekalkan ati jer lah! Went to Kuching Specialist for that .... Done everything within one day ...and was proclaimed as medically fit! so happy ....syukur sangat2 for that :-)

other than that, I have to sign a lease with the University for my accommodation ...the good thing is that i already have a place at a uni hall there ...and my office space has already been sorted by my supervisor as well ...but there are still a few things that i have yet to do; namely (i) renewing my passport; (ii) visa; (iii) tickets; (iv) allowances and other financial related matters; and last but not least (v) shopping! i need a luggage; a new laptop, a new phone, a new camera ...hehehe i really have to distinguish between my wants and my needs!

so, i will still be busy in the next couple of months ...but after waiting since last Feb for this, another 4 months should be more bearable, as the light at the end of the tunnel is much clearer and more welcoming now!

wish me luck, k.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Asthma - symptoms and precaution

It is that time of the year again, when the haze phenomenon is back to haunt us ..everywhere you look is hazy ..with this lingering white-ish cloud hovering at the background ...blocking your view could barely see the blue sky ...but not only that, the haze is not a good news to asthma sufferer ...and I am speaking from  the point of view of an asthma sufferers ....

since my attack 2 weeks ago, I was advised to my doctor to be extra careful as the haze season is back ...and coz of the seriousness of the last attack, I am (I hope) more careful now ....and i was given lots of things to read about asthma ...I guess the Doctor is fed-up with my couldn't-care-less attitude all these while...she even commented that I don't seem to take it seriously ..and said hope these phamplets will open your eyes to the fact the asthma is a chronic disease and it can get worst if uncontrolled ...and then Liz told me of a passing of an aquaintance's son who died of asthma a few weeks ago kecut perut akak now ok ...and I think hard about it ....and did what I do best ...look for extra information regarding asthma ....

Most of the readings indicate that one should control one's asthma should not be left unchecked (like I did before), i found lots of medical related website on asthma and learn new things .....but most importantly, I think now I know the signs when it is about to attack ...

Signs and symptoms (from this website)

• Coughing, sneezing, itchy throat
• Tight chest, wheeze
• Shortness of breath
• Wake up at night
• Fast heartbeat and breathing
• Headache

Being in this hazy condition is certainly detrimental to my health ...can feel the itchy throat, shortness of breath and feeling really tired despite not doing anything much ...even walking from my entrance to my car (less than 100m) is tiring ...and going up the stairs in the house is also tiring for me i am taking extra precaution by keeping my inhaler ready and with me all the time ....

I was also advised to avoid things that can trigger asthma ....I have remove nearly all of the carpets in my house (when adik has asthma 2 years ago) ...there is only one carpert in my hose now - the one in the living room ...I seldom use that area, unless we have guests ...and we also have a helper coming in once a week to clean and clear the dust and what not I read that, the type of detergent used for washing clothes and bed linen may also act as trigger due to its content ...I have never heard about that before and I will read more on this ....and another thing is to avoid the outdoor when there is haze, pollen season etc etc ....

i am hoping that I dont have to see the doctor too frequently about this ...i am hoping that I would be able to control my asthma and prevent it from getting worst first asthma attack was in 2006 when I was on a field work to Baram area ....that was mainly due to over exertion and lack of rest ...but then I only ever saw the doctor like 2-3 times a year for neb ....nowadays the rate has gone up is more like 4-5 times a year ...but the doctor say it is still manageable as I only had this attack when I am overly stressed and do not have enough rest ...or when the weather is bad ..either too hot or too cold masih ada harapan bagiku

Friday, September 28, 2012

avoiding Coffee @ Week 2

me and my coffee addiction ...

 maybe i should have this huge photo in my room ...tak minum tapi tengok pun jadi laaaa

it has been two weeks now that I have to reduce my coffee intake. So far, I managed to cut down on my intake of coffee ....from 8 cups or more a day to just 2 cups a day in the morning and another one when I get home from work ....there was no coffee in between these hours and certainly no coffee before bed! At first it was hard ..but it gets better now ....

I substituted coffee with lots of different drinks ...i need to find the drinks that can replace coffee in my life now :-) Nowadays, my lunch will be accompanied by hot barley drinks or lemon honey drink ...and I am avoiding carbonated drinks and ice as well I said, hilang nikmat dunia ...but one got to do what one got to do ...i want to be healthy, so have to make some sacrifices ....

honey and lemon drink @ OldTown

and my supply of H20 in the office today is ......

mineral water and non-carbonated drinks

I just recently discovered this passionfruit tea ...nice! especially cold but as I am avoiding all cold drinks and ice, I had this at room temperature ...also nice! This Heaven and Earth brand is actually a product of Coca Cola .. there are a few flavours but my favourite is passionfruit ...

so, so far so good in avoiding coffee ...hope it will last this time!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Going gaga over bread!

Not everybody has the time for leisurely lunch ...or even a good choice of eateries near their workplaces a dear friend always said, she is stuck with her canteen food and have not much choice either ...

I am lucky in a way coz we have a number of eateries just outside the campus ...but the downside is we have to drive there and sometimes it is just not convenient ...especially when the timing clashes (when my lunch buddies are free, i am stuck with classes or other errands) ...or when i have classes during lunch hours ....or it is just plain maniac busy that I'll have to sacrifice lunch and just sat in front of my workstation all day trying to finish my work ....the scenario sounds familiar right?

and today I am bringing packed lunch to work. Bemen has a full schedule today, and that means I'll have to do lunch on my own. I dont to go out by myself (I always thought that only loser sat out to lunch on his/her own ...without friends hehehehe) so my solution was to pack my lunch. Since there are two loaves of fresh bread that has yet to be sliced at home, I decided to make myself a sandwich ....

 hahaha i had already taken a few bites before I remember to take a photo :-)

a simple sandwich ...with chicken slices, lectucce and tomatoes with a dash of coleslaw sauce to gel them together .....yummy! but most importantly, it was quick and easy!

My brother had his breakfast of eggs and chicken slices with this yummy bread as well this morning fact the whole family is going gaga over this loaves :-) Al had this with his favourite nutella spread and mom had hers with peanut butter and grape jelly spread ...while jane and dad had theirs with eggs (dad had poached eggs and Jane took some of my scrambled eggs to put on her bread). All these can be done in seconds and will make a filling lunch or breakfast treats :-) I might be having tuna and sweetcorn sandwich for lunch tomorrow all time favourite since my uni days ...

talk about uni days, bread and sandwiches were my good friends ...had them nearly everyday ... tuna sandwiches, tuna and sweetcorn sandwiches ...sampai muak! but now that I am home, i kinda miss those moments ... tuna pun tuna lah asal dok overseas hehehehe ....

who knows, I'll revert back to this routine when I am in NZ?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

chubby cheeks and nearly ready blanket

Oo.My.God!!! My little neice is turning out to be so cuteeeee ...and, chubby- of course! My sister sent pictures of her everyday ...for us to ooo and aaahhh over despite the distance .....

look at that chubby cheeks!!! (taken from my sis's FB)

just 3 months old and already 6kg

My mom was busy over the weekend ...she was sewing Umang's patch blanket is 80% done. My mom is very quick on the sewing machine ...and is planning on having another one made up for Umang to take back to KL as well .....and Al also asks my mom whether she is going to make one for him and adik, of course my  mom was touched and said she will make them one each is just that she'll have to figure out a different design for them :-)

the green one ...the other one will be purple or red I think

I used to make patchwork blanket before ..if i am not mistaken i made 2 extra large ones ...when I was waiting for my SPM results ...I left one in Penang and I am not sure where the other one is now. Maybe at the cottage on one of the boxes ...I am thinking of making one blanket for myself, but I am too busy ...I dont ant to start something and left it hanging and unfinish ....

anyway, another photo of the chubby baby (a.k.a. my neice) ....sooooo sweet!!!

Have a great day people ...whatever your plans are :-)

Monday, September 24, 2012

cutting down on coffee

was advised by the doctor (yet again!) to cut down my coffee intake, instead of 8 cups a day, I am down to 2 cups a day ...that's the best I can do! I cannot (and I repeat, CANNOT) go cold turkey on this ...

I have tried it before....i will suffer like an addict who is experiencing withdrawal symptoms if I were to go without coffee is a torture, believe you me! But i usually managed to cut to coffee to 1 -2 cups (cup NOT mugs) of coffee a day ...and then, like an addict ..I will increase my intake of coffee when I am feeling better and night, the moment I wake up and a big mug of coffee before bed ....and Starbucks takeout almost everyday ...

But it has been a week since I cut down on coffee ..and i am craving the foamy, delicious aroma of Starbucks Caffe Latte ...should I stop by on my way home later? I am still unwell - I can feel this mucus thingy in my chest and am still coughing ...but the craving is too strong ....arghhhhhhhhhh

mind over matter. mind over matter. mind over matter. mind over matter ......

who is this awful looking gal? just a reminder to self - DO NOT DRINK COFFEE IN HUGE QUANTITIES ....i hate being sick ...and that was apic of myself during my neb session at the clinic ..when my asthma was at its worst ....

i really need the willpower to cut down on my coffee intake ...maybe i need to find new drinks that can rival coffee in my life :-(

Happy Monday people. Be safe.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

spending time with family

the weekend is here again ...seriously, time flies really fast nowadays!

Now that I am still in a limbo, not knowing when (if ever) I will be leaving, I plan on enjoying every available moments with my family ..coz I may be "directed" to go as soon as possible - only Gods know ...and it is weekend already ...and weekend seems to be the time when everyone is relax and just be there with each other ...there is no rush to do anything, no rush to take shower in the morning (hahahah) that everyone may still be in their PJs well into the afternoon rush for lunch as we will be sitting round for heavy brunch (am planning on cooking something this weekend  - not sure yet what it will be though!), then a relaxing afternoon ...and leisurely time for dinner ....and same thing again on Sunday ...sound peaceful, right?

well, there were times in the past when all that is just a dream ...I was always busy with my work ....if it is not preparing for lectures, I will be involved in some research - which means my weekends will be spent poring over books, writing reports - or even field trips away from Kuching ...this year, all that has gone.Not time for family activities ...but part of that years, I was alone...with mom and dad in KL taking care of Al and what not ...then Airell came along and stayed with us ....I tried to make time, but it was hard ...but this year it all changes... Basically I have not been that busy this year coz I have decided to cut down my research as I am concentrating more on applying and preparing for my PhD ..that's why my weekends are more relax compared to previous years ...

and that's why this year, I have more weekend trips with my family ....

 beach side break during Easter this year

 walk at the park

 and I have more time with the kids ...they have this habit of barging into my room first thing in the morning ..and play in my room before they go to bed ... adik likes to watch DVD in my room, play on my bed, same with Al....he even run to my room if he is quarelling with his parents ...and sometime he choose to use my bathroom to do his business! If that is not a close bond, i dont what else to describe it :-)  I know I will them terribly when I am gone!!! I have yet to go, but i can feel that I will miss them so much ....

I am about to cry now (such a watery faucet!) and i better stop writing.  But yes, i am planning on spending as much time with my family nowadays .. and next weekend we will be gong for another shortbreak - this time at Damai Resort. To celebrate Adik's belated bithday and Dom's birthday ..and my belated birthday as well  ...

Guys, dont work too hard. Stop for a while and enjoy your time with your precious ones ..coz once it is gone, it will be lost forever ....time and tide wait for no men, so get your act together. Work is work, and it will always be there ...but family? your kids will grow up and you might miss the moments ...your parents will grow old, and you'll miss seeing them the way they used to be ....

Happy weekend people!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Adik is 4 years old today

Happy birthday to you,
you live in a zoo,
you look like a monkey
anddddddd you smell like one too!

That is adik's favourite birthday song - from Madagascar Movie ....

My boy is 4 years old today time flies ....and he will be going to kindy next year ...i am so proud of him. He really is a very special boy to me, always has ..and always will be. Mama loves you, Airell.

We are not planning on having anything today - just our usual makan2 ...but we will be celebrating his birthday belatedly - by going to spend next weekend at the beach!!! yeayyyy ...looking forward to that ....and will keep it updated in future postings.