Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The All-Day Sickness

Alhamdulillah I haven't really been craving for anything unusual so far, and hopefully not ever. Now that my all-day sickness and nauseous (seriously why the heck do they call it morning sickness when it's practically all-day??) has subsided (I still throw up every once in a while but it's is not as bad as before), I can now start eating properly and not feel like I've been poisoned. I mean seriously, the nauseous and vomitting was so bad. I can't eat anything basically. Even a simple, mild meal like oats, Koko Krunch or plain crackers with milo for breakfast. Within an hour or less, I would start running to  the toilet to throw up. I drank some plain water and hey what do you know, I will throw up plain water too! And when there's nothing left in my poor tummy, I will still throw up, only this time, it's stomach acid. It's yellowish in colour, tasted bitter and sour and horrible. I ate lunch, of course I throw up lunch, be it nasi campur, soup noodles or buns. 
To add to my misery, I am very sensitive towards smells, especially cooking smells. Heck, I can't even stand the smell of coffee when my colleagues made them! To make matters worst, below my office is a row of pubs, a Thai restaurant, a Chinese coffee shop and at the end of the block is Soul'ed Out Cafe. My office is situated on the 1st floor so the smells from the cooking below would come up and made me even more nauseous. I even resorted to refraining myself from drinking a lot of water because I just don't want to go to the toilet as it will make me gag, and most of the time throw up, not so much from the smell of the toilet but the cooking below.
On better days, I would throw up maybe 2-3x a day but on some really bad days, I even threw up 5-6x a day. So can you imagine how 'meh' I felt? Sometimes the gagging and the retching was so bad that tears and sweat all came out. Sigh. I kept telling myself, "Please be over" "Please let this be a short period" "Please be kind today" "Please no throwing up today" and kept reminding myself that I am carrying another life inside me and the end product at the end of the pregnancy will be worth it, Insyallah. That's what's everyone has been telling me too but if you have been throwing up like a bulimic, no amount of words could calm you down. 
Sometimes when I threw up at home, Babycakes would come to the toilet and ask me, about a thousand times, "Mummy, putah (muntah) ke?" On one hand I felt aww such a thoughtful little girl I have but on the other hand, I feel like screaming because how the heck am I supposed to answer when I feel like my whole intestine and guts are pouring out? *exaggeration added* She would also come to the toilet and patted my butt or my thigh to calm me. So sweet, right? I also asked her to rub some nutmeg balm on my back and on my forehead, which she would be ever so willing to do. 
During the weeks that I felt like death, I just want to lie down everytime I go home so I would tell Babycakes "Mummy nak rehat ok? Jangan kacau Mummy. Irene duduk diam2 ok?" Who am I kidding? How can you expect a 2 1/2 year old to sit quietly? It's like telling a cat not to eat the fish in front of it. -_- So to keep her 'occupied' I asked her to do these instead.

 It's a win-win situation.
She's happy she gets to play with the lotion and rub it all over my feet and legs and I'm happy to get a free foot and leg massage and also get to lie down for a few minutes. And what happens if I fell asleep and left her on her own? These.
She opened my handbag and took out my make-up bag and started applying the make-up on her face.
Peace Mummy! -_- Nak marah ada, geram sudah semestinya! Tapi kelakar pun iye jugak.  Habis my eye shadows, my compact powder and my lip balms kena korek. And there were traces of it on the bedsheet and her clothes and pants. Pandai pulak buat peace kat Mummy kan! Sigh, my pride and joy.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Keep The Memories In A Book

My husband has been into taking pictures this past year or so. He bought a decent camera for our trip to Sydney last year and has never stopped clicking since. It is not a huge, bulky DSLR camera that costs thousands of ringgit but a decent enough camera that is not too big and bulky yet takes nice and quality photos. He would take pictures of everything from ash trays to leaves, a half full glass to his fat wife chomping down on foods like a greedy person. So unflattering. But the memory cards of the camera is 90% filled with pictures of none other than his precious little girl. So what better way to preserve the pictures if not in photobooks? Why let the pictures sit in your hard drive? It may go kaput or the memory may get lost if something happens to your pc or if your hard disk is stolen. Since hubby is so into taking pictures, I am the one who would compile the pictures and turn them into beautiful photobooks. Thankfully photobooks are made affordable now with so many companies having promotions and deals on the deals websites. I am always on the lookout of good photobook deals. I don't think I would spend hundreds just on a photobook. To date, we have 15 photobooks and the number will definitely grow.

These are our very first photobooks. Pictures of our akad nikah, malam berinai; reception at Prince Hotel and reception at Pusat Komuniti Bukit Damansara. Hubby created these photo albums. We didn't or rather haven't made  our engagement day photobook yet. Must remember to make one so that I can see how "thin" I was back then. -_-

This album is an album of beautiful, fond memories of my first pregnancy right up to Babycakes' first few months of life. So precious, this album.

 These are softcovers albums with pictures of us going places and doing stuffs.

 These are hard cover albums. 

These are our raya albums. Actually I have another raya album for raya in 2011 when I was pregnant with Babycakes but I have misplaced the album. It's small in size and the pictures weren't really of good quality. The photobook wasn't really nice too. And there's another album of our Singapore trip back in June 2011. I am thinking of re-doing the albums.

These three albums are the latest to add to our collection. They are quite small in size, 8" x 6". 

I am always on the lookout of good photobook deals. Most of the albums above are priced at less than RM50 per book. For example, the latest three albums were only RM25 each, exclusive of RM8 postage. The normal price was RM92.  I bought it last year when they are having a Christmas promotion. I always buy at least 2-3 books at one go especially if the price is so cheap. Sometimes when I buy, it feels like a lot but now I've ran out of vouchers but still got tons of pictures to preserve. Creating and designing the photobooks takes some time and patience too as you need to choose the pictures carefully, choose the page layout, design, background etc but the end product is worth it. Alternatively, if you are too lazy to design your own, you can always use the wizard or use pre-designed templates.
So what are you waiting for? Why keep the beautiful pictures and memories in your handphones and laptops? Turn them into books and you can always turn the pages anytime you feel like walking down memory lane.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Little Miss Chatterbox

If there is one word to describe my Babycakes, the perfect word would be Chatterbox.
This girl talks a lot, like a lot a lot! Sometimes I can't believe that a 2 1/2 year old can say such things, can ask such questions, can talk that much. I guess she must have gotten it from me. Well at least a lot of people say too. "Mummy kan lawyer, banyak cakap. Tu yang dia ikut tu." Not sure if that is a compliment or a sarcasm though.
Anyway my Babycakes can talk fluent Malay, alhamdulillah no pelat/slang whatsoever. I just need to speak English with her more so that she can master both languages. I also have to watch my word, especially when I am with her. For example, everyday when I pick her up from the nursery, I would come to a T-junction on the way home. It gets a bit hard to go out because people just never give way and worst, they never turn on their signals. So I would say "These people!! Bagila aku masuk!! Aku nak balik rumah ni!" To my surprise, not long after, Babycakes said the exact same words when we reached the T-junction. Lucky I didn't use any foul language or else habis!
Another  incident was when she asked me, "Semalam balik pukul berapa?" I was speechless. The previous night I went out with my friends and when I came back, she was already asleep with Daddy. I know she must have heard me asking hubby sometimes. But I never thought she would ask me the same! Wait till you're 20+, Mummy will ask you that same question ok?
She also has an answer to everything. One time I took her to see her grandparents i.e. my parents. We went out to dinner and then it was already 11pm. So i said to her "Irene, masuk car. Jom balik." She then said, "Irene tak nak balik. Nak masuk rumah. Irene nak rehat." Yes, she can speak in a full complete sentence, I am not kidding. I was like "What rehat? You can rehat di rumah. Balik rumah tidur!" She said "Tak nak!" And then I had to coax her by saying "Jom balik, nanti kita minum susu kokit (susu coklat)" She said "Tak nak susu kokit. Dah kenyang."
I could go on and on about her but I shall stop before I get emotional (damn pregnancy hormones!) Sigh my baby is all grown up. I love to hear her talk, what with her husky voice and all, though it can be tiring at times to answer and respond to her because she can ask the same thing over and over again. My mum always reminded me "Must always be patient with her, talk nicely with her, layan her so that she becomes more and more bijak yada3." I know she will definitely be my kawan berborak (and bertekak) later in life lol. Mummy love you so much Babycakes!

Picture taken at Fraser's Hill, November 2013

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The reason why

There is a reason why I have been away from blogging for the past one month+. 
First, I was bogged down with so much work, preparing for a Trial which was supposed to be held on 27 & 28 February 2014 but was postponed to 1 & 2 April. I have been going to our KL branch office for at least twice a week for a meeting with my boss and counsel and also have lunch with them, before going back to my office in Hartamas. Trial eventually went on the 1st and 2nd April and will resume on 5 May. I also came out in the Malaysia Namban and Tamil Nesan newspapers with my boss, counsel and client on 2 April 2014. :D

Apart from busy with work, I haven't been in the best of health for the past weeks too. I wish I could just stay at home, in bed, with the curtains drawn and basically do nothing all day long. It feels like death is creeping up on me. *exaggeration added* I don't feel like I want to meet anybody, I don't feel like going to work and I just want to be on my own. However that is not possible. I have a life to live, a work to do, a boss to answer to, clients to attend to, court matters to attend to and most importantly, I have a husband and a toddler to care for. The reason for my feeling bleugh is this.

I am currently 14weeks pregnant with my second child and since the 1st trimester is over, I guess it's ok to update it here. I didn't update anything on FB yet though. So far only my family members and close friends know about my pregnancy. I shall wait a few weeks more before I announce on FB, if at all. I know there are people in my friend list who are struggling to conceive, who has been trying but failed and I am thinking of what is the best and most appropriate way to announce it so as not to rub it in so much into their faces. You get what I mean? I feel sorry for them for they have yet to get their rezeki from Allah and I couldn't be more thankful and happy to be pregnant for the second time but I also want to be sensitive towards others. As much as I want to share the happiness and joy, I must also think about other people.
Anyway, please pray for a smooth and complication-free pregnancy and delivery for me, will ya?
More updates in the upcoming posts, Insyaallah.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Lost my groove

I have lost my momentum and my groove to blog. I noticed my last post was on 5 February 2014. That is more than a month! So bad. I need to find my groove back. Once I have found it, I will resume blogging, Insyaallah.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Vanilla Souffle for Dessert

One night I was feeling extra hardworking and decided to make desserts for after dinner. I've been wanting to try and make souffle but I knew that it is a very complicated dessert. However I was determined to try because how will you learn if you never try, right? I bought my ramekin cups from IKEA and it has never been used so this is the perfect time to use it.

There you go. My souffle raised nicely but it was a bit too brown on top. Next time I need to make sure the temperature is low. Babycakes and hubby loved my souffle. Next time I will try and make chocolate souffle, Insyaallah.
Recipe and instructions are courtesy of Eugenie Kitchen.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Homemade Cheese Biscuits

I finally got around to baking my own cheese biscuits for Babycakes. It is so simple, it requires very little ingredients and it is delicious!
The ingredients you need are:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 4 tbsp butter. If you use unsalted butter, you might want to add about 1/2 tsp salt into the batter. I used salted butter so I put just a teeny pinch of salt considering that the cheese and butter are already salty.
  • 2 tbsp ice water
For instructions, click here. I used recipe from this site.

After taking out the dough from the fridge, roll it out evenly and start cutting the dough using your favourite cookie cutters. Of course I used my trio cookie cutters in the shape of a star, a heart and a teddy bear.

Arrange the cookies on a parchment paper. As you can see, they are close to each other because they don't expand since there is no baking powder in the recipe. Make sure you poke the cookies with a fork so that they don't puff up when being baked.

Bake until golden brown and you are done. The biscuits were tasty even my hubby loves it! He even said "Banyak ni je ke biskutnya? Tadi I tengok you buat macam banyak je?"  Will definitely bake another batch because this batch is already finished. Go try and make them yourself. It is so easy and most importantly, preservative free, homemade and made with love.

Day Trip to Bentong, Raub and Colmar Tropicale

Last weekend was another short and impromptu trip for us. Initially we wanted to go to Zoo Negara on Sunday but by the time we got ready, it was 11ish am and it was starting to get hot. Inside the car, I asked hubby, "Betul ke nak pergi Zoo? Ke nak pergi tempat lain? Colmar ke?" Because the previous day, he asked if we wanted to go to Colmar but that was already 4ish pm and I told him by the time we get ready and reach there, it'll be dark and there won't be anything much to do, unless we want to stay overnight. However we didn't make any bookings. He also said we could go to Bentong or Raub to find durians but where to stay in Bentong or Raub? So on Saturday evening, we went to Setia City Mall instead and bought this cute dress for Babycakes at H&M. Her necklace is from Cotton On Kids, which was on sale, RM5 only.
Babycakes posing in the car on the way to Zoo Negara, which later we diverted our plan to Bentong instead. That escalated quickly, right? I only packed one packet of chocolate milk for her and a spare change of clothes. I didn't bring a cardigan for her because we were supposed to go to the Zoo, remember? That's why she was all ready with her sunnies and hat. Poor child. She thought she's going to see the elephants, tigers and giraffes. Next time ok?
Before we reached Colmar, I told hubby let's have lunch first maybe in Bentong. Bentong is further up than Colmar btw. We found a nice restaurant which serves nasi campur at a decent price. The foods were quite nice too. Then we went to search for durians. Surprisingly, most stalls along the road sell nangka madu (jackfruit). We were wondering where the heck are the durians? Aren't they in season anymore? We went towards Raub and found a few stalls selling durians so we stopped by the road and had a really good D24 and Musang King. Gosh the taste was divine! We also tapau some back home. Even though the durians were put in containers, the smell was so overpowering and it lingers in the car even until today. Babycakes love durians too and as usual, she doesn't mind posing in front of the stall.
After the durian feast, we went back to Bentong and stopped by an ol skool ice cream shop. We thought this is the famous ice cream shop in Bentong because this is the only one we saw. Apparently the famous ice cream shop is Kow Po. Never mind, we shall make another trip to Bentong then. We had the ABC with pandan ice cream. It was good especially on a hot day and after eating durians. We told Babycakes "OK lepas makan ice cream, kita tengok animal."
We reached the Animal Park at about 4pm. Entrance fee is RM3 for adults and children below 2 enters for free. I am not sure about the fee for children aged 2-12 though. If I am not mistaken, it's RM2. Even though Babycakes is 2yo, they didn't ask to pay so oklah. I bought two packets of animal feed, RM3 each to feed the deers and rabbits. At first Babycakes hesitated to feed the deers and the food tend to fall on the ground because she got geli when the deer's wet nose and mouth touches her hand. I showed her how it's done (that is after a few attempts because I was geli at first too) and she got the hold of it. She kept asking for more animal food.
The place isn't that big but big enough for the deers to run around. There are also an outdoor playground and an indoor playground (not in picture). So if you bring your kids here, they will sure have a nice time. There are also deers with spots (think Bambi!) and some with antlers but  I didn't take their pic with my phone. More pics are in my husband's digicam and I am too lazy to transfer the pics. You have to go there yourself to see the animals. They're really tame especially the plain ones. The spotted ones are a bit shy/eksyen because they always run away when you come near them. Menatng2 lah cantik! Their fur is softer than the plain ones. The plain ones' furs feel like a broom, I am not kidding.

There are guinea pigs in an enclosure together with some deers, some cages for rabbits and also an enclosure for rabbits to roam free. You can enter the rabbits enclosure and play, pet, hug, feed and touch them.  It was a nice experience for us, even though this is our second time here. Babycakes had a lot of fun playing and feeding the animals, touching them and chasing them and also had a great time playing at the playground. With such minimal fee, this is definitely a worthwhile trip and experience. It may be a bit far from KL but the weather was cool and nice, the park didn't smell at all and you get a hands-on experience with the animals. After all that play, Babycakes conked out almost immediately in the car on the way back. We will definitely come back!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Impromptu Trip to PD

Last Saturday we went to Port Dickson (PD) for a short trip. Hubby asked us to get ready and said we'll go to see some animals. I ask, "where?" He said "Colmar Tropicale." But that was already 3ish pm and it was a bit cloudy outside. I said to him by the time we reach there, it might already be closed and what if it rains? Then he said, "Ke u nak pergi beach?" I said "which beach?" "PD". OK set. We quickly got ready, I made nescafe in our hot cup, packed Babycakes spare change of clothes, diapers and milk and off we went. My husband loves to take us on an impromptu short trips over the weekend. We've been to Genting Highlands on a short notice a few times already. Good thing that Babycakes napped along the way and by the time we reached PD, she woke up refreshed.

Instead of going to Teluk Kemang Beach, we decided to go to Pantai Saujana. The beach was bustling with activities, there were so many people on the beach and there was a pasar malam (night market) opposite the beach. Perfect! We strolled along the beach and watched people burying themselves in the sand, people swimming and playing balls on the beach. However, the beach wasn't very clean as there are litters scattered on the beach. So disgusting.
There was a playground and we let Babycakes play. After a while, she got knocked down by another kid after going down the tube spiral slide. Unfortunately the kids' parents didn't monitor their kids. Kids, being kids, didn't know that they were supposed to wait until the slide is clear and the person before them had got off the slide before they could come down. So yes, Babycakes cried. While Babycakes were playing, I went to the toilet to pee. The fee was 50sen but if you want to bathe, you have to pay RM1. When I entered the toilet, to my utter shock and disgust, the toilet was packed, stuffy, people were queuing and there were only three freaking cubicles available! At the place where you can take your wuduk (ablution), some people were squatting bathing their kids and themselves. There were clothes hanging everywhere. At the sink, also there were people bathing and squatting using a rubber hose and one kid was bathing inside the sink. I just couldn't take it, I left. If I were to wait, it'll take forever. I should have asked for a refund considering I didn't pee and didn't even use the sink. It was just too disgusting and a horrible sight. I am so gonna write to the Majlis Perbandaran Port Dickson to improve this. There were a gazillion people on the beach, covered with sand and whatnot so good luck to them! Unless they won't mind getting into their cars in wet and sandy clothes. Bleughhh. I told hubby, that's it, I need to find another toilet to pee!
We then crossed the road and went to the nearby Petronas because Babycakes was whining for Ribena. I won't mind drinking the drinks sold at the pasar malam for myself but I don't think I'd want Babycakes to drink them. After that we went to have an early dinner at one of the restaurants, all within walking distance. The foods was OK but I won't recommend it. We went to the pasar malam and thought of buying some apam balik and putu piring but we were already full. So we bought some grapes and corns.
There were a row of stalls selling all sorts of T shirts (there's even a Hard Rock Port Dickson t shirt!), floats, kids' swimming suits, balls, magnets etc. I bought a pink ball with Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck for Babycakes and also two pairs of leggings for RM10 each. I also bought this slippers for RM6 because my sandals were sandy.
 We got into the car and went to PD Waterfront. Last time we went there, there was a funfair so we hoped there is one and what luck, there is!
There were not many people so we had a nice time. A token is RM2 and some rides require 2 tokens. Babycakes wanted to play with these ducks because she was excited to see so many ducks!
I went on the train and dinosaur rides with Babycakes and then I got dizzy because of the dinosaur ride. So I asked hubby to take Babycakes on the Ferris Wheel. I wonder why they call it balloon wheel though. Besides, I am kinda scared of heights. -___- The Ferris Wheel operator said it will take 5 spins but it was definitely more than 5 spins. After that, all three of us went on a boat ride which spins. Basically most of the rides spin so that got me dizzy again hahaha. After that we head home. Babycakes wanted to play even more but there weren't that many rides and she's too small for one of the rides. Next time I want to book a hotel and we can stay and enjoy the beach and explore PD a little bit more. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Fun Carrots

Since I have yet to get around to making my own cheese biscuits for Babycakes (so ambitious with the cookie cutters, I know), I found another creative use for it! 
Check out my abik (teddy bear), twinkle (star) and I Love You (heart) shaped carrots! Made these for dinner last night for my cantonese fried koay teow. Babycakes loves carrots but making them in cute shapes like this made eating carrots more fun for her. Next time I must cut the carrots into horizontal strips so that I can get more shapes out of it as compared to round ones. As for the remaining bits of the carrots, of course I threw them into the gravy as well.

I too haven't gotten around to making my own chicken stock just yet. I've been using Maggi or Knorr cubes and powders for my cooking. Not so healthy, I know. So when I found this vegetable seasoning powder at Cosway, I decided to give it a try. It is MSG-free and it's made of vegetables so it's much better than using Maggi and Knorr's right? Next I will purchase the mushroom seasoning powder and see if it tastes nice.