Friday, October 21, 2016

My Not-So-Batik Kek Batik

Last night I made my very first Kek Batik. I saw a video on Kek Batik on Facebook so I googled the recipe. There are now a Kek Batik version with cheese OK! Wow. I shall try that someday. But the recipe I used was from this website.
It was pretty easy except for the part where my Milo becomes lumpy and I had to stir on very low heat until my hand hurts. LOL. The good thing about this recipe is that the Kek Batik didn't turn out to be too sweet. It has the nice balance of sweetness, buttery and creamy from the combination of butter, condensed milk, Milo and cocoa powder. I omitted the vanilla essence. After I was done, I covered the tin with cling film and kept it in the fridge. 
This morning, I took it out to cut. My mistake was that I used tin foil and the tin foil I used isn't the heavy-duty type. I bought mine at Daiso so it's really thin and easily torn. It was hard to remove the tin foil from the Kek Batik, especially at the corners and the edges of the Kek Batik. Gosh. I should have used parchment paper instead!
This is the reason why I called it Not-So-Batik Kek Batik because clearly you can see that the layers aren't pretty. I followed the exact measurement so the chocolate should be enough, right? It was challenging to press the cookies too to make it compressed. And cutting the Kek Batik is quite a chore OMG. I thought it is one of the easiest cakes to make! I used a long serrated knife and I think I should have used a normal knife. The biscuits weren't soft so they sort of crumbled under my knife. Aren't they supposed to be soft-ish? Despite the appearance, I am glad it tasted so nice. I gave some to my babysitters and some to my office cleaner lady and also packed a few slices in the kids' lunchbox today. Appearance can be improved, definitely.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Monday Morning Mishap

This is a throwback post because obviously today is Wednesday but I've been quite busy these past two days and today I can finally write about what happened on Monday morning.
Nothing unusual, just another manic Monday. *i bet you sang the words to the song Manic Monday by The Bangles* I got dressed, asked the kids, Babycakes in particular, to get dressed and chop chop! Get ready quick or we'll be late to school! So there I was, cleaning my little ear with a little cotton bud when suddenly the cotton came off and was left in my ear canal! I was like NO! Oh No!! I asked hubby to try and retrieve it with a tweezer but the tip of the tweezer was a bit sharp and it made my ear hurt. Hubby kept saying that he can't see the cotton anyway. Since my ear was hurt, no thanks to hubby, I said to him, that's it, I'll have to go to the clinic to get it removed!
After sending Babycakes to school, I went to the office and had my breakfast and coffee because most clinic opens at 9am or 9.30a.m. After I finished my breakfast, I walked over to Klinik Segara which is nearby to my office. When I reached the clinic, there were already 6 people in front of me so I had to wait for a while. When my turn came, the nice Dr. Soraya (I am quite familiar with her already) asked "So, what can I do for you today? What's wrong?" I replied "I was cleaning my ear and the cotton bud came off and got stuck in my ear." To my relief, she said "Ahhhh, it happens! Don't worry, you're not the first one." She then called her nurse to take something called 'an alligator' (if I had heard correctly) and honestly my heart kinda skipped a beat when I hear the word 'alligator'. Her nurse came with the 'alligator' which looks like a long scissors and a torchlight. Dr. Soraya then proceeded to insert the 'alligator' inside my ear and within seconds, the cotton was out. It was a tad uncomfortable but I was so glad it was over within seconds. When she took it out, she said "Done!" Phew. I left the consultation room and the other patients waiting outside looked surprised to see that I was done so quick. 
Next time I must make sure that I don't go in too deep inside my ear. Mind you I was using Guardian brand cotton buds, which I expect to be of high quality. But of course, things happen, accidents happen. So be careful whenever you clean your ears OK?
By the way, that costs me RM20. Yeah. And because it's a clinic and a doctor, who is also a professional, I cannot ask for a discounted fee, let alone walk away without paying. So whenever you go see a lawyer and ask for advise and got some work done, make sure you do the same and pay the god damn bills too, OK? And no, you are not allowed to bargain or ask for discounts. What do you think we are? If you can pay your medical bills without complaining, without asking for discounts, why can't you do the same with our legal fees? Hmmph.
Anyway, here's Manic Monday by The Bangles, just because.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Who Doesn't Love Snacking?

Imagine this: You are in your office, reading through mountains of files all morning. Your tummy starts grumbling and when you look at the clock, it's nowhere near lunch time. Happens all the time, right? You feel like you have spent hours in the office and yet the time is actually moving at a tortoise's pace. Annoying, I know. Your tummy starts calling for some foods but you wanted to have something light so as not to ruin your appetite for lunch. What do you normally have for snacks?
Sometimes I have japanese cucumber, cherry tomatoes, strawberries and grapes (not in picture) for snacks. This is usually when the fridge is well-stocked or we have just done our grocery shopping. Sometimes I eat chocolates, biscuits or kerepek. You know how these are loaded with sugar, salt and preservatives, don't you and snacking on them on a daily basis won't do you any good.
I have heard about Signature Snack for a while now. I have subscribed to their newsletter but I have never come around to making any orders or any purchase from them. Honestly I find the stuffs they sell are a bit on the expensive side. 

However, on Monday, 10.10.2016, they had a one-day promotion where a lot of items on sale were priced at RM10.10! I thought that was a good deal so I went ahead and made a few purchases. This morning my parcel of goodness came.
Look at all those goodness in a box! I ordered on Monday and the parcel came today because apparently "Some of the items are freshly bake hence it is worth the wait." What did I order? Here is the list:
  1. California Walnut Natural (raw)- I plan to use this in my brownies and/or carrot cake
  2. Chocolate Chip Cookies
  3. Berry Treasure- a combination of dried cranberries, dried blackcurrants and dried blueberries. These can either be added to my overnight oats or into my cupcakes and muffins
  4. Salted Vanilla Cashew Crumble
  5. Chocolate Chip Almond Crumble
  6. Triple Choc Cookies
  7. Organic Chia Seeds
  8. Organic Five Grain Rice- consists of organic brown rice, organic red rice, organic buckwheat, organic millet and organic black rice. Question is, how the heck do you cook this and what do you eat this with? I simply bought this to try because they were so cheap for a packet of 500g! They were sold for RM6.90 on that day. Impulse buying! 
Anyway I am glad I managed to grab the promotion price because it was totally worth it. In case you haven't noticed, I'm a huge fan of chocolates and I have already opened the Triple Choc Cookies. They were crunchy and yummy! I can't wait to try the other cookies. So if you are looking for a healthy snack, head on over to their website.

Monday, October 10, 2016

DIY My Little Pony Magical Dreamland

Babycakes is so into My Little Pony at the moment. She requested for a My Little Pony birthday cake for her 5th birthday. I went on Pinterest to get ideas and inspirations for her birthday cake and I was spoiled for choice. It was hard to choose one design because all of them were so pretty and cute. However, I have a set a certain budget for her birthday celebration which includes a cake and party packs for her classmates. 
After consulting with my cake baker Murni of MurniSue Cakes, we agreed to a simple design of a vanilla cake with buttercream. As much as fondant cakes are pretty, nobody will eat the fondant and they would go to waste. Not to mention that fondant cakes are priced slightly higher than buttercream cakes.
Inside the cake are pink and purple vanilla cake with buttercream filling. 
Where are the ponies? Instead of having fondant pony figurines or an edible image printing of the ponies, I decided to buy little pony figurines. I found them on Simply key in the word My Little Pony in the search button and you will be able find these mini figurines. What I did was simply arrange the little ponies on the birthday cake. The set I bought comes in 12 pieces but they're really small so most of them went onto the cake while the rest was simply arranged on the cake board just before cutting.

Since the ponies are really small, they have a very high tendency of getting misplaced or worst, lost. It doesn't help that Babypie likes to play with Babycakes' stuffs and throw them all over the place! Luckily I found this pin on Pinterest on DIY My Little Pony Magical Small World. I told Babycakes that I will make a 'pony house' for her to keep her little friends so that they won't get lost easily. She was excited and kept asking me when we are going to do the 'house'.  
On Saturday afternoon, we finally got down to work. We gathered our materials which include papers, colour pencils and crayons, glue, cotton balls, a shoe box and glitter glue, which is optional but glitters make everything better so why not. Plus, they're really cheap at Mr. D.I.Y. 
First I asked her to take some used papers from Daddy's stash and a blue colour pencil. She started colouring the clean side of the paper with colour pencils but it's taking forever to cover up the whole page. Being the little diva that she is, she started saying that her hand is tired. -______-
So I asked her to find a blue crayon instead. I then showed her how to colour the paper using the crayon. It was so much easier and faster. I asked her to repeat the process with green colour for the grass.
After she finished colouring, I glued the papers inside the shoe box resembling grass and sky. Then I asked her to paste some cotton balls to make clouds. 
Using the glitter glue, I drew a rainbow, some birds and a sun in the sky and also some flowers on the grass. As for the bridge, it was part of my moisturizer packaging so we recycled the package and used it to make a bridge. It's perfect for the dreamland because the size is right and it is glittery gold.
The hardest part was not making the entire magical dreamland but waiting for the glitter glue to dry. It takes quite a while to dry and clearly somebody wasn't patient enough that she kept touching the glitter glue to see if it's dry, thus smudging the rainbow. Babycakes was so happy that she helped created the 'house' that she kept playing her little ponies in it. This is a good way for her to let her imagination run wild. I wish I have a bigger shoe box though and I should have made a bigger rainbow but I guess this will do for now. The best part is, she can keep all her little ponies inside the box after playing and close the lid because I told her if I ever see the little ponies lying all over the house, I will take them away. For now, she closed the box and kept it nicely. Let's see how long this will last. 

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Rainbow Hair

The rainbow hair trend has been around for a while and gosh I secretly wish I can have such lovely rainbow hues. But let's be real, if I were to have such hair, I would probably go viral and get mocked at. Pfft.  I mean, just look at the pic below. How gorgeous are those locks OMG. 
Picture credit: Google
It's like unicorn hair or My Little Pony's Rainbow Dash's hair. Sighhhh.
Picture credit: Pinterest
Also, go and feast your eyes on the lovely lovely rainbow hairs in Pinterest. OMG its was like rainbow-hair heaven!!
Well, good to know that actually it is achievable and do-able and the best part is, it is not permanent! How? Let me introduce you to Hot Huez Temporary Hair Chalk.
I got mine from Supermodel's Secrets Website. When I bought them, they were on sale and they costs me less than RM20. They were on promotion and I managed to grab them then. Too bad the promotion has ended but the price has been slashed from RM49 to RM35 so go and grab yours!
Babycakes was excited when I told her about the hair chalk so during the Hari Malaysia holiday which was also school holiday, I let her try them on when we were on holiday in Melaka. When else to give it a try, right? To apply the hair chalk, you have to damp or wet your hair slightly so the chalk can easily transfer to the hair.
The applicator is soft with one side sponge and one side chalk. All you have to do is take a section of your wet/damp hair and place them in between the applicator. Press the applicator and slide down to the end of your hair. 
Babycakes' hair was a bit dry here because she went swimming in the morning so the hair wasn't as soft and shiny as usual. Due to the lighting, the colour can't really be seen but in reality, the colour isn't really bright too. Not sure if it's due to her hair condition or maybe the colour isn't meant to be really bright. Even though application was easy, unfortunately the sponge came off from the applicator thus making it a bit hard to apply so I had to adjust and put it in again. When you slide the applicator to the hair, the sponge tend to get folded so the chalk wasn't properly transferred to the hair. This is also probably why the colour isn't so bright. You don't have to worry about removing the chalk from your hair because it can be easily removed when the hair is washed. Overall, considering the price I paid for it, the product is OK and maybe I got a not-so-okay set. if you have little girls, they will love this and this can be used for fun or for when there's a party. 

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Milky Goodness with Dutch Lady

By now you would have most likely seen my never ending posts on my breakfasts on Instagram and Facebook and you would probably wonder why. I mean, my breakfasts look simple and nothing great and definitely wasn't taken at some fancy cafe or coffee shop and neither are they Pinterest-material! BUT you may have noticed that in every single picture that I posted, there is a packet of Ducth Lady Purefarm Full Cream Milk or Dutch Lady Purefarm Low Fat High Calcium Milk. 
Since I was small, I was taught and trained (or rather forced) by my mother to have breakfast, whether I like it or not or whether I am in a hurry, be it a simple glass of milk or malt drink, a slice of bread dipped in chocolate drink, a half-boiled egg or anything for that matter. I still remember finishing my breakfast when the school bus is already waiting outside. The key note is to ALWAYS HAVE BREAKFAST because we all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I really need to thank my mother for instilling this good habit in me because until today I never ever skip breakfast and I ensure that my kids have theirs too.
I try to have healthy breakfast like eggs, bread or sandwiches, cereal or oats but of course, being a typical Malaysian, I do indulge in the occasional nasi lemak and roti canai. I always down my breakfast with a cup of coffee and occasionally I used fresh milk to go with my coffee. 
Now that I am in my *ehem*3 series*ehem* and a mother of two, with one who is currently breastfeeding, I know I have to keep a healthy lifestyle and I have to take care of myself so one way to do it is by drinking milk to get the much needed calcium to strengthen my teeth, bones and hopefully *fingers crossed* I won't suffer from joint pains and osteoporosis! Apparently, Malaysians are not getting enough calcium from their daily food intake. To think of it, some people may not like milk so much but good news, Dutch Lady has a variety of milk flavours to choose from namely chocolate, coffee and strawberry and they come in various sizes too.
Nearly one in two children does not have adequate calcium intake*; and the average intake of calcium among adults comes up to less than half of our daily requirement**. The nutritional gap may lead to a brittle nation. Hence, Dutch Lady Malaysia encourages Malaysian families to load up on milk before work or school. Just two servings a day helps meet a family’s nutritional requirements! Having one of the two servings at breakfast pumps at least 200mg of calcium into the body.
Milk, the motherlode of calcium, helps children to develop strong bones and teeth. It is also the key to locking in healthy bone mass for adults, even during their golden ages. In other words, the creamy beverage builds strong families. Indeed, a balanced breakfast paired with milk is the backbone of a physically and emotionally strong family and advocating breakfast with Malaysia’s No. 1 milk***
I recently received a box of Dutch Lady Purefarm Milk which contains 7 packets of milk.

Here I want to share with you how I have my breakfast paired with Dutch Lady Milk. Of course you can go crazy and get creative with your breakfast. 
DAY 1: Breakfast of sausages, toast, two sunny side ups and sauteed mushrooms, courtesy of Dutch Lady. What a pleasant surprise I received upon returning from Court on Monday, 19 September 2016. 
DAY 2: I had to rush to Court in Shah Alam on Tuesday, 20 September 2016 but that doesn't mean I have to skip the most important meal of the day! So I simply grabbed a banana, a roti krim and a packet of Dutch Lady Purefarm Full Cream Milk. I had my breakfast-on-the-go and it was a great combination of breakfast and I was off to a good day in Court. FYI. waiting in Court may take ages so with a full tummy, I don't have to starve while waiting for my case to be called.
DAY 3: A simple bread with butter and kaya, a banana, some pomegranates, japanese  cucumber and of course, my favourite milk.
DAY 4: Clearly I have a lot of bananas at home so I have been having bananas everyday of the week. For breakfast day 4 I had bread with Reese's Chocolate Peanut Spread with bananas and chia seeds, paired with Dutch Lady Purefarm Low Fat High Calcium Milk.
DAY 5: Again, I have to attend Court so I had a quick breakfast of bread and sausage and none other than Dutch Lady Purefarm Low Fat High Calcium Milk.
DAY 6: Finally the weekend is here which means I can sleep in a little until my Babycakes and Babypie woke me up and bugged me, that is! We were going out so we had a quick breakfast at home. Even though it's a quick breakfast, it is nutritious and fulfilling. I simply blended some avocados with Dutch Lady Purefarm Low Fat High Calcium Milk and some honey for sweetness. This thick smoothie is packed with nutrition, omega 3 and goodness from the milk.
DAY 7: What's breakfast without a serving of good ol' half-boiled eggs, right? But in my case, they're more like 3/4 boiled eggs because the yolks have hardened. 

Did you know that after about eight to 12 hours from your last meal, a glass of milk provides the nourishment your body needs in the morning to regulate itself? So guys, if you are really really pressed for time to have breakfast because you need to catch the LRT or the morning bus or you have to be in a meeting or court by 9am, at least just grab a packet of milk to start your day on the right track. 

*               Nutritional status and dietary intakes of children aged 6 months to 12 years: findings of the Nutrition Survey of Malaysian Children (SEANUTS Malaysia), British Journal of Nutrition (2013), 110, S21–S35.
**            Current nutrient intake among Malaysia, Adult: Finding from MANS 2014, THE MEDICAL JOURNAL OF MALAYSIA, VOL. 70 SUPPLEMENT 1 SEPTEMBER 2015, pp 12.

***          Based on Retail Audit for 12 months ending July 2016 in Total Penisular Malaysia (Copyright © 2016, The Nielsen Company (M) Sdn Bhd).