Monday, January 21, 2013

Chilling at the cottage

One of our favourite places to chill is the cottage ...we love it there is quiet, and away from people ..we have a complete privacy there ..and we dont usually have visitors there -sort of by invitation only (feeling ala ala celebrity) ...

the kids love it here coz they are able to just play outside the house ..and lots of activities to do ...there is a fish pond and a natural river at the back, and that is where we usually go for fishing ...mum and myself love to potter round the cottage and its gardens love it out here coz he has lots of fruit trees here ...both mum and dad tend to go here when they want to get away from their babysitting duties hehehe ....

  Photo was taken by Al - dad was trimming what he hope to be the main landscape feature of the cottage - he plan to have this plant to grow and be shaped as a welcoming arch :-)

Fruit picking is one of the fun activities here at the cottage ...lots of rambutans, cempedaks, jackfruits, durians and what nots here ...but for the first time ever, last Dec we harvested our mata kucing was fun!

not bad for a first harvest :-)

It is kind of nice to have a place to go to just to chill ...and what makes it great was it is a completely private place ....still a lot to be done here but we are taking our time ...

Sunday, January 20, 2013

counting the days

Last Friday was my last official day at work ...I didnt even know it till lunchtime that day ...was so busy with marking and keying in the marks that I had forgotten about checking my leave. Once the marks were endorsed, and when I wanted to apply for leave, I realised that I had 6 days leave to take ..and I can only take 4 days since there is a public holiday next week hahaha and guess what, i had mixed feelings about all this the one hand, I am excited but I am somehow feeling something is not right I am leaving a place that is so comfortable and familiar ..and somehow it is difficult for me to let go ...but  i know i have to go ..coz it is my dream. I have been fighting so hard for this chance ...

and since yesterday I have been trying to be realistic ...I have started to pack some of my stuffs ..much to the displeasure of Al - who kept on pulling things out from my luggage ...and I also started to spend more time (as much as I can) with the kids ...I am so gonna miss them!

And being realistic means I am finally making a list of what I should do, bring or buy ...amongst other I have to:

(i)   get all my documents copied and certified,
(ii)  settling all my standing orders so that all my payments are on time;
(iii) clearing personal items from my office; and
(iv) making time to meet my close friends for farewell hahaha and that usually involve food!

But one thing that I am so happy to have done before I go was to spend the weekend with my besties ...had a really fun weekend in KL last week ...just chilling and relaxing with friends awesome weekend!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Christmas at the longhose 2012

We celebrated Christmas at the longhouse last year ...Dad has been renovating the longhouse for months and it was basically done (except for the finishing touches) a few days before Christmas. And it is also the first time EVER that all of us were there together to celebrate Christmas ...the whole clam was there, including Umang who visited Sarawak (and the longhouse) for the first time it was a very noisy affairs with 3 kids and 7 adults in the house :-)

We went back to the longhouse on 23rd Dec - and believe it or not, we used 3 cars! Too much stuffs to bring with us, specially with the kids' stuffs taking about half of the storage space...we also transported the presents and the food stuffs ....luckily we have a spare Christmas tree at the longhouse, so i was tasked to set it up and re-arrange the presents ..mountains of presents this years - and more than half are for the three kids ....Al was the most excited at opening presents hehehehe and he helped adik to open adik's pressies.

Christmas is usually time for family - to know new family member, rebonding of the relatives and strengthening family ties ...we have 2 new family members this time round - Umang and her daddy was introducing them to our close relatives ...we had a private bbq party at the cottage on Christmas eve ....which was a roaring success ...everyone was very happy finally be on holiday hahaha I was the odd one coz I was on leave since the 20th december :-)

Dom and family plus mum went to chrch early on Christmas day, while I stayed back and do the cooking ..a very untypical christmas dish making sup tulang (request from my dad), and re-heating the dishes that my mom had cooked before she left ....Umang and my sister also stayed back coz they are preparing to go to her inlaws' place after lunch that day ....she wants to wait for everybody to get back from the church and to open our presents together ....

Umang having her breakfast on Christmas morning

Mum wanted a portrait with all her grandkids ..but it was not a smooth process ..all three kiddos were not co-operating as they were more interested in doing their own things ...hahahah poor mum ...after a few attempts, the pic above was the best shot of the lot ...both al and adik were doing their own things hahaha

Umang's other aki came just before lunch to pick them up ....also Umang's first trip to her dad's longhouse ...they left after lunch, and after we opened our presents ....and guess what, coz we were so disorganised (hahaha) we completely forgotten to have our family photo on Christmas morning!

The rest of the holidays were great ...lots of visitors - my cousins and their families came over to see mom and dad ....other people from the longhouse visiting from door-to-door was such a merry holiday :-) Usually Gawai is merrier than Christmas ...but somehow, I just feel that the last christmas was awesome had a grand time ...I had a good rest, doing absolutely nothing but eat, sleep and be merry ...

we also went to Pantu to visit family friends .. this elderly couple has been friends with my parents for a long time.

We waited for Umang to come back to the longhouse on 29th before heading back to Kuching. Dom & family meanwhile, headed to his inlaws' on the same day as they were spending the NY with jane's mom. It was a tearful scene again when we bid goodbyes ...especially for my sister and Al ....Coz by the time Jane and the kids came back to Kuching on NY day, Umang would have already reached KL, that's explains the tears and the sad faces

the sad scenes - it was always like this everytime these two say goodbyes to each other!

It was a great and memorable time spent with family. It is very seldom that we get a chance to be together under one roof every Christmas least dad was very happy to see everyone there. He kept on saying that, if his parents are still alive, my grandparents would have been very proud of us granddad died in 1987, whilst my grandmother died in 2004 ...that's why our longhouse is empty, and we only stay overnight there like 1-2 times a year ....but now that dad has renovated the place, and it is beginning to look like home, i think we will be going there more often ...

a week into 2013

my first posting for 2013 ...a week and a half into the new year usual my days are filled with chores - both at work and at home is the exam season at work, so i am up to my neck in marking and exam invigilation duties, not really have idle time to do a posting, here's a quick posting on how i am faring in the new year:

feel so good that I am finally sorted in terms of my documents for PhD: visa sorted before Christmas, tiket bought and confirmed, supervisor has been notified of my arrival, accommodation paid for throughout this summer holiday, my leave from this uni has been sorted, all agreement and documentation signed and returned to relevant units, all is well - so far so good, so lets all keep your fingers crossed for me :-)

another great news - ticket to KL for this weekend was bought - so I will be meeting my besties in KL for our ronggeng is something that we have been looking forward to ..and this will be the very first time the whole gang will be there ...our first reunion in Bandung was incomplete coz Ita wasn't there ...and subsequent meetings were never complete :-) so, here's to a great weekend of makan makan and gosip gossip with the gang ....and it is only 2 days away! here's my wishlist for the weekend - nasi dagang, lompat tikam, murtabak, tomyam ...and of course the seafood meals and, if the time permits, lunch at Chillies - i want the molten lava cake!!!

the not so great news is that I have tonnes of marking to be done by 18th Jan ...and that is a very short time span ...i can feel that i will be burning midnight oil in order to meet the dateline ....and that could trigger my asthma ....-which is not something that I am looking forward i am taking extra precaution - no iced drinks, no carbonated drinks, less caffeine ..and to try to reduce anxiety ....

plus I am feeling sad ...i will be leaving my comfort zone, and somehow the nearer the time, the less excited I become ...i must get a grip coz once i am there, there is no turning back ..and it is not an easy journey ...and I am praying that things will go smoothly for me ...

ok, enough of the rambling - back to marking now!

Happy New Year 2013 everybody, wherever you are. Have a blessed year ahead ...