Friday, 23 October 2009

What a stupid article....

Check out this link, and read what’s inside.
(http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2009/10/20/live-porn-aboard-economy-train.html)

I’ll give you 3 minutes.
One, two, three...
Done?
I took me just 10 seconds to read this article before my blood temperature suddenly hit the high note.
The article was named: Live porn aboard an economy train?
It was about how in Indonesia, in the commuter trains in greater Jakarta, people breastfed their children in public, which the article said would make “.....the group of men ... enjoyed free porn that hot day.”
I think it’s sick to say that opening your blouse to breastfeed your baby would be considered as porn. For God sake, it’s an act of Love! Not porn!
The writer wrote,“How can a baby exploit their own mother’s privacy just to satisfy their hunger or thirst?” Again, she hasn’t done her homework. Don’t you know that that’s the only emotion that a baby knows? Babies are not born with database of emotions you know and of course she can’t TALK or find food on her own! She only knows that if she feels hungry, thirsty, wet, or uncomfortable, then she’ll have to grab her mother attention by... of course ,crying!
She mentioned that ‘guys’ kept watching the event curiously. Well, male commuters will always be watching this kind of incident, since commuter train in Jakarta is usually used by people from ‘that’ education level. We can ask the mothers to try covering up the breast, for example with some cloth, or bring some extra formula/breast milk on bottles. But, if these people could afford the luxury of having a breast-cover or a milk bottle, they obviously will take another mode of better but more expensive, transportation, not some low-key economy train.
Looking from the way she wrote this article, this person, whoever wrote it, has never felt the joy of breastfeeding your child, or maybe even worst, never felt the warmth of being breastfed by her mother.
I also believe that she probably never watched “real porn,” before she used this term in her so -called writing.
Please Mrs./ Ms. writer (yes, the name implied that she’s a woman), don’t be a mother , you’ll be ruining a generation or two by telling your daughter to breastfeed is to perform an act of porn. (Or maybe in fact, God had read this article and noticed that you are probably not capable of being a woman or a mother?). And do yourself your homework by watching Asia Carrera or Miyabi before using the word porn unwisely!
Shame on you, for thinking the way you think right now, and shame on Jakarta Post for publishing this article. Congratulation for creating such a low-quality, stirring up article!

Thursday, 8 October 2009

The low Miss Low??

I just got back in Singapore and voila! The first thing on the paper I read - other than stories about Padang - is the blunder in Singapore Beauty Pageant results. Well, not the results, but more on the behaviour of the winner(s), especially the chosen miss Singapore, Ris Low.

She made headlines weeks ago after media found out that she has (on-going?) charges on credit card fraud. Then, when her colleague- the second place winner-made a remark about her support to Low, Low, instead of appraising her, made accusation that her colleague was the one who leaked the her cases to media.

Before that, Low also made stirred up comments during her interview, both during and after the pageant, you can see her interview here.

Not only that, recent news also mention that from now on, a judge on her fraud charges had ordered her not to shop alone anymore, because she had spent 8000 SGD on accessories, bags, shoes, right after her winning. Talk about being a material girl :p

What bothers me is not the quality of Low as a pageant winner, but more on the quality of the juries. I mean... contestants, of course, join the contest to be a winner and believe me, being a pageant contestant myself some 10 years ago; they would do ANYTHING to win. Including faking yourself in front of Juries for example, and I'm sure, this person is really good at that. A contestant certainly would try to conceal her weaknesses and not introducing herself like this: "Hello, I'm Ris and I love credit cards so much, I used up mine and other people's to splurge. I'm sure I can represent Singapore. No? "

Supposed a contestant shared an answer like this: "My quality? Oh, umm. Let's see... I'm easy going, I'm a quick learner and I always pursue my dreams and goals." Well, inexperienced jury might just eat the raw answer, but experienced judges would translate the answer to: "My quality? Oh, umm I'm a wild party goer, I cheat on my exams and I would do anything to win this contest as it has always been my dream." Only experienced and senior judges can differentiate this type of candidate from the real ones.

Then, as I mentioned earlier, how stupid can these Miss Singapore World juries can be? I'm sure she can fool one jury, but to fool a whole panel? It turns even crazier after I found out from the latest news that Low actually is suffering from bipolar disorder. How come the juries didn't get that from their interviews with her? Shouldn't contestant be exposed to at least a basic personality test? And her English.... man... even I can do better. And I started to speak English only when I was 10 or something (on my first trip to Singapore :p). There was also a blunder concerning the English ability of winner of a beauty pageant in Indonesia a couple of years ago. Miss Indonesia 2006 (or 2007), Nadine Chandrawinata came to Los Angeles for the Miss Universe Finale... and she didn't even know how to perform a decent interview. She called Indonesia as a nice "city", and her English was comparable to those of a high school's freshman. BUT, fortunately, physically Nadine is extremely, extremely beautiful. A 6 foot tall statuesque, brown eyes, big boobs, clear skin. And Ris Low? I can tell you she's extremely PHOTOGENIC- meaning she looks pretty after makeup and through the lenses only. But she's no beauty, both inside and outside.

So I presume, from next year on, not only the quality of the contestants should be improved but also the quality of the juries. In the mean time... I have 20 years to nurture supposedly, the future Miss Singapore/Indonesian and her name is Rania :p

Monday, 5 October 2009

TURIKE IS BAAAAACCCKKK!!!

Finally, I'm back!!!
In case I forgot to mention, I just got back from Surabaya and Jakarta. I stayed in Surabaya for a week to visit my Mother in law, and then to Jakarta, the place where I grew up.
Surabaya is located near East Java Sea, which made the city humid and the temperature hot, VERY HOT. Just 5 minutes in an open space made me sweat like I had just finished a 5km run in midday. Another 5 mins and my skin would melt and dripped.
Life went slowly in Surabaya, perhaps it was just me? I dont know. But life here started at 5 am, because at 5.30 we would have sunrise already. So at 5pm, the sky was already dark and we would have sunset around 5.30 pm. By 6 we would have dinner, and by 7.... we have nothing to do. At 8, we were alrady in our pajamas. Sometimes I felt that I was in a time machine and it took us back to the 80's where we don't have internet and TV cable. How I miss those times and how I love Surabaya. Can't wait to be back next year!

And Jakarta? Still as crowded and busy as ever! We had only 3 or 4 'days of silence', the days where Jakarta's residents went home to their 'original' hometowns during the "eid Mubarak" holiday. After those days are over, roads were filled again, malls were crowded and people seemed to flood to all the places that I went to.
Rania even experienced something 'interesting' : a black out for 6 hours, because elecicity main generator had blown out.. Cool. Jakarta, how I miss you already.

Still, it's so nice to be back... no, it's not that I love singapore and its ambience that much, but it just feels good to be back on your OWN home. So good to be back to certainties, MRT, starhub, fast internet connection and... my VAIO PC :P

Friday, 11 September 2009

The Culprit

Have I told you that I used to have such a tidy-spotless-lovely living room? Well, the term 'used' to is the watchword. It was still possible to keep it clean before Rania started walking, but now? It’s practically not viable. IF I let her alone in the living room, when I came back I would find:
a) A scattered and ripped newspapers
b) Ripped pages from the yellow pages
c) Sofa pillows on the floor
d) A smiling baby tried turning off the TV
e) Or 90% chance, all of the above

So you can imagine, me, running like a frenzied Frankenstein to scoop up my baby, who was trying to put up one of her legs to climb the coffee table in the living room.
I guess those articles on ‘baby-proofing your home’ are true, that once you have a walking baby, men, you will have no time to baby-proof your home.
Just yesterday, I was talking on the phone with my mother on my computer table when I realized some smudges on my white drawers. The smudges were black handprints of 5 little fingers, guess who the culprits was... It took me 30 second to realized the culprit was the smiling baby who sit under the computer table, observing the computer switch box , making decision on which switch to push, he he...

From DIVA: See the world from the eyes of Turike...


Anyway, now her hair is long enough to have a ponytail. Cute, isn’t it?

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Able to upload pictures, finally.

I'm finally able to upload pictures. It was rather difficult to do it this time with a new computer. Wait, have i wrote that I have a new computer? Yeah, we have a NEW ONE, it's a SONY VAIO JS, the sleek, lean desktop, yeah!!! 4 Gigs, plus we decided to invest on a new, extra disk storage of 1... TERRA bytes!!! Yeah, my baby rules!


From DIVA: See the world from the eyes of Turike...


( Ijust put the "undercover economist" book just to make the picture looks more intelligent :p normally the keyboard is smudged with chocolate-covered little hand prints, and right now i'm reading the X Men comic instead of the "undercover economist" :p)

Anyway, back to the problem. Before, it was easy for me to upload pictures from my phone camera. Just turn the bluetooth on, simply send the pics to the laptop (before was a laptop) then upload it via blogger tool.
But now... *sigh* first I have to allign the handphone and the PC, and I have to do it via a PC Sync program. Which was like, difficult, because every time I try to syncronise the phone, it upload 200 pictures in the picture folder instead of a single picture that I wanted to upload in the first place. Then afterwards, like I mentioned earlier, my freaking browser didn't allow me to upload pictures from my PC folder OR even from the web.
So, now I need to use a picture uploader on the net and embed the pictures instead of uploading it.

But, what the heck, I using a Sony Vaio JS, can't complain, woohoo!

Monday, 7 September 2009

Can't somebody tell me!!

CAN SOMEBODY TELL ME WHY I CAN'T UPLOAD MY PICTURES, EVEN FROM PICASA! HUAAAAAA!!!!

Geylang Serai Night Market

We went to Geylang Serai Night Market Yesterday. The market, a temporary one, opens during the month of Ramadan, the fasting month for the Muslim Community. During the Ramadhan, the practising Muslim are supposed to fast, or refrain from eating, drinking, smoking or anything to do with passion, from sunrise till sunset. In Singapore, it's about from 5.45 am to 7.10 pm. For those of you who never heard of Ramadhan, muslim-fasting, etc, click here.
Just like a Christmas market that sells Christmas candy, sweets, traditional stuff, this market also sells stuff commonly famous during the Ramadan. This night market becomes THE hot spot during the month for the Malays.
From DIVA: See the world from the eyes of Turike...


The market was actually a very big one, with area as big as 3 football fields stitched up together (OK, I over reacted). The wooden and unlevelled platform could make you trip here and there. You can find almost anything in the market, from toys, typical malay food, kebayas from Indonesia, carpets, aromatherapy candle from China, till, yep, "shot the can and throw the ball" game stalls. And I had a feeling most Malays in Singapore AND Johor Baru had the same intention as us that nite: searching for food.
From DIVA: See the world from the eyes of Turike...

By the way, did you notice the lady in gold head-covered dress? Well, she was wearing a telekung, or praying dress for muslim. Indeed, she was praying at that time and at that place. Sweet, huh?

As muslims ourselves, last nite we decided to go there after fast-breaking, hoping to find some good dinner. And whatta good meal we had. After 30 mins of coming in and out of alleys filled with 2 millions Malays (!), we arrived at the Geylang Serai Market. This one was a permanent market, that sells chicken, meat, etc during the day and at nite became a famous hawker centre. I ordered a fried kway teow and unlucky me, this was what I got. It was RED...rice noodle with everything. But it was nice, well, take into account that I was totally HUNGRY at the time.
From DIVA: See the world from the eyes of Turike...

Remind me to go there after DINNER instead next year.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

On civility, tipping, hostile waitress and pesky molesters in Singapore

The Oprah Show last night talked about civility or being civilized. The show had given me yet another proof that even people from developed countries can be less cultured that those from 3rd world countries. Let's just say that cab-snatcher, pesky molester, I'm-a-customer-so-I'm the-queen and touch-me-bump-me people exist everywhere, even in Singapore and the States!

Talk about civility, I just had a very unpleasant experience last week when a Malay (or was it a Bangla?) guy followed me from Bugis MRT and tried hard to have a conversation with me. It was sickening, man! But what's more sickening was when no one seemed care enough to help me. One girl who eventually helped said she was sorry for not helping me earlier because she taught we knew each other. D'oh! Something has to be done in the future to get rid of these pesky molesters... and to brush up the society civility as well. I was lucky I was taller than the guy. But what if the victims were skinny foreign maids or small-build mainland Chinese shopkeeper, wouldn't it be fatal? I just wanna say to all the foreigners out there in Spore to be careful and vigilant when an ugly-looking bangla, malay or dark-skinned* man approach you for ANY kind of reason, RUN! And if you somehow *knock on wood* got molested don't be afraid to scream for help and to take pictures of your molesters. The least we can do is to send his pictures to newspapers, have it printed and circulated island wide under the headline: UGLY LOOKING AND SMELLY MOLESTER. The statement 'low crime doesn't mean no crime' is indeed correct.

Talk about civility and the Oprah show again, during the last part of the show they talked about 'hostility' towards waitresses and the importance of tipping. I realized in most countries that I've visited tipping are somehow a must, between 15-25% of total and in Singapore however, tipping is not an obligation. Some generous uncles or cab drivers a couple of times gave me a 10 or 20 cents markdown to round down the fares. Now, hostility towards waitresses... well, in Singapore, compare to other countries I've visited, there were times when I feel that I was the one being intimidated by the waitress, no kidding! I found that some waitresses who didn't speak English or even singlish, mostly from mainland china, were the most hostile. Some were even unfriendly towards baby Rania ; once a waitress took away a plastic spoon Rania was using for entertainment purposes – well, rania was checking the earth's gravity effect using the spoon. Another time a waitress took away her baby chair abruptly without consulting me, when Rania's feet was still strangled inside the chair. She said she's gonna keep away the baby chair back since it seemed for her I was not using it anymore. Blah!

I don't know whether it's because I look foreign and Indonesian, or that's the way they behave towards every customers regardless whether they are white or copper skinned (hum, interesting...).

(*) No offense towards Bangla, Malay or dark-skinned people in S'pore. And to hostile waitresses /waiters.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards

There's new blogging awards in town ! It's called Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards.
It's not like me to ask for some favour, but in case you like the way I blog things around, feel free to nominate my blog :p ha ha ha.....
For nomination link, click here.
Thank you!

The journey to find new friends and communities in Singapore

Having been in Singapore for almost two years now, I have joined several meeting groups looking for new environment and searching for friends: local, foreigners and fellow Indonesians. Because I believe life is much more valuable by having new friends and learning new cultures. And here goes the story, the journey to find friends and communities in Singapore (and along the story I'm gonna tell you a bit about each group I encounter or have joined).

The first group I tried joining was a group of Fellow Indonesian Moms in S'pore. It turned out my effort to join to be such a blunder, and the group's communication was limited only to an email mailing list, so it wasn't that worth it. So I continued my journey by searching for a group of mothers or stay at home mom, and I found this group: New Mothers Support group or NMSG. The group mainly consists of expatriates or ang moh (Caucasians or white people in hokkien) and their activities including talks and mom-baby socials in Gymboree and botanical garden. I found joining the group to be helpful because it consists of different nationalities and it's filled with informative sessions. I presume I was the first Indonesian to have joined the group.

After my daughter was big enough to be left at home with my helper, I decided to pursue my passions for writing. The journey started by taking a course in Feature Writing by NUS Ex. The teacher was nice and the class itself was fascinating. The class was filled with Mainland Chinese, some Singaporeans and two Indonesian students, including me. Realizing I need to have more discussion to sharpen my creativity skills (blah!), I joined a group called "Singapore Writers Meetup Group". Don't get me wrong, although it's called a 'writers' group, it's largely consists of writers wannabe or aspiring writers, including me, hi hi. During the group weekly meeting the attendants discuss about their writing process or do several writing exercises. Due to scheduling conflicts I have only able to attend one meeting, but I look forward to join the fruitful upcoming meetings!

And my journey continues. The latest group I joined is the Friends of Museum. It has several discussions cum study groups and it provides a course for becoming a valid Museum Docents in several Singapore Museums; the peranakan museum, the national museum of Singapore, the Asian civilisation museum and the Singapore art museum. So cool! I plan to join the course for peranakan museum but I need to hold back due to again, scheduling conflict (blah). And like an official course, it has a specific curriculum, some reading list and materials, a thesis (research paper) and a final presentation in front of a Panel. Whoa! Like NMSG, it's largely consists of expatriates and, like before, I have the feeling I'm the first Indonesian to have joined.

I still plan to join this group called Primetime, a group of working and professional women. I haven't joined just yet, so I still cannot give info on this one. I'd like to join the group though, if I got 'the' job *fingers crossed*.

My journey to find more groups or communities to cure my culture–thirst pangs still continues. I do wonder though, if I could find a group of 'Singapore-window-shopping' lovers, or better yet, 'singapore-discount & bargain-shopping' group. Let me know if you heard about them.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

reciprocal link

Expat Women Blog Directory

Baby Olympic

Rania is a big girl now. She has yet to walk on her own, but her fave activity is now playing with her push carriage/cart that she got for her 1st birthday form Auntie Wita (thank you Tante). She started by pushing it slowly, but after a couple of hours she was able to grasp and was moving very fast; I ought to register her to Baby Olympic - Cart pushing. We wouldn't now if she would win or not, but otherwise I can start teaching her about ... errr... becoming an ice cream Seller?


video

Monday, 24 August 2009

No photos or videos!

I can not upload my photos or videos, due to 'javascript void'. What the hell was that supposed to mean!

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Hawkeye and Amy

I'm so relieved to have found some children's book series that I used to read during my childhood, in the community library near my condo complex. The series is called "Can you solve the mysteries with Hawkeye and Amy" or "the little detectives " Indonesia. This series of books were the first ones that filled up my early detective-sleuth reading list. Late in life, the list added up with Manga detective like Meitantei Conan or Kindaichi Case files, to Agatha Christie's work wonders like Poirot's cases, Miss Marples stories, or Parker Pyne's chronicles.

And yet, mystery-cum-sleuth-cum-whodunnit novels have never failed to entice me. During my scavenger hunt in the community library, along with Hawkeye and Amy I also found this semi-sleuthing-chicklit called: "How to kill your husband and other household hints" by Kathy Lette. Talk about a new genre of chicklit.

Well, I hope that my list of borrowed books can help me pass through the hours of fasting during the Ramadhan. Beside praying and reciting the Koran of course. AND taking care of Rania. AND blogging. And... ouch, whatever. Don't mind, this is my empty stomach is talking. (PS: And I haven't even started fasting just yet, still having my period!).

Thursday, 20 August 2009






New Email addresses available on Yahoo!
Get the Email name you've always wanted on the new @ymail and @rocketmail.
Hurry before someone else does!

My Cupcake

I was so busy with all the rambling thoughts, the vacation, that I forgot to submit this.

31 July 2009

One year ago today, at exactly 3 in the morning I felt a kick on my stomach. I thought I was just being tired because I slept at 12.30. But two more contractions later I realized it was for real; the tiredness had drawn my energy, but the feeling of being able to see my baby soon had eradicated them. At 5 in the morning, me, my husband and my Mom went to the hospital. The sky was pitching black at that moment, but our hearts were pounding with happiness.

We arrived at around 5.45 am and at that moment the effort began: the pain, the throbbing, the thirst and hunger. At 3 pm I started pushing and my lovely hubby helped the process with all his energy, he even held his breath too! Not only that he didn't hesitate in holding her crown or cutting her umbilical cord. You have a very daring Papa, Rania.

And after 14 hours of pain and nearly 3 hours of pushing... you came out. Just one cry and I forgot all the pains, the 38 weeks of carrying you on my tummy...

... And now, look at you. Now you stand up, talk and run with your carriage. I never thought God's Love can come in such an adorable figure.

Happy Birthday my cupcake of blessing. I will always love you as the light and fortune of our life, just like we named you Mayeesha for "life's blessings".

The Ramadan fasting and the Hungry Ghost Month

Last Sunday, one day after we got back from Bali we went to watch "Where Got Ghost" A hor-medy film by local director's Jack Neo. The fact that I still worn out after the trip and never have enjoyed any kind of ghost film, have made me a bit resistant to watch it. But I have made a promise to hubby so I went. To my surprise, it was funny and creepy at the same time and has some moral values as well. It consists of 3 independent stories that portrayed Singaporeans and their values including kiasuism (wanna be the best) and the metropolitan-mixed-with-kampong-spirit attitude. First story was of a group of con-men that stole oranges meant for spirit-praying, the second was about a couple of NS men that did not follow instructions given to them during field trip which led them to the 'spirit land' and the last was about 3 siblings who tried getting rid of the ghost of their lovely mother. I screamed and laughed at the same time. It was hilarious!

The movie however got out just right before the start of Hungry Ghost month, which, according to Singapore-Chinese culture is the month to honour the ancestors' spirits that come back to earth during the month (the hungry ghosts). On the contrary, for the Muslim society tomorrow will be the start of Ramadan, a month of fasting from emotional zeal which rituals including not eating and drinking during the daytime.

This is what I respect from living in Singapore: that completely-opposite cultures and religion could go hand in hand.

Monday, 17 August 2009

Connected and Disconnected at the same time

I just came back from my first family vacation with my husband and child. I've been to Bali several times, if not many; but this trip has been one of the most interesting. We stayed in a villa in Ubud, owned by my Distant Aunt and her Family, from Europe. It was a remote villa like 10-15 minutes from Ubud center, was located next to a river, a paddy field and a .... duck farm. The view was breathtaking. And it was properly prepared for enjoying the scenery: there wasn't any house phone, there wasn't any television (but it has a CD player), there wasn't any computer and there wasn't any phone signal when you need it. When I went there before, I got jaded and ended up asking someone to drive me to the centre for an internet cafe, everyday.

But now, I have a daughter, which means I can not jump on a motorcycle and hastily ask someone to drive me to find internet and leave my baby crying for her milk. So this time, before I arrived on the villa 7 days ago, I took a deep breath and prepared myself to do some 'digital detox' in my own way. The first couple of hours were the most difficult. Both me and my husband checked our phone so often, tried searching for a wi-fi connection, played with my daughter for a couple of hours and then got bored. And during dinner time in a Resto in Ubud Centre I cannot helped myself to search for an internet cafe. I sneaked out and checked my email. No important messages have arrived, but I felt good after doing it. I just felt connected to the world.

But after that, I continued my dinner and began thinking about it. How stupid I was? This was supposed to be a vacation, a place for relaxation? Why should I worry about the outside world? Why should I be worried about being disconnected to the rest of the world? And that moment I decided to get connected to the 'real world' and disconnected from the 'online' world.

Technology brings us closer indeed. I remember I used to send recording cassettes of my twaddle talks to my grandma via post mail, which could take a couple of weeks to reach her. Now, just five minutes after making video of my Rania's first steps, I could easily upload it to Facebook and my mom could easily watch the video in less than 10 minutes after it was made. Technology made us connected to each other easily, but also made us disconnected to nature and life as well. With the rapid movement of technology that surrounds our lives every day, sometimes we just forgot how life was like before it exists. So now, I'm gonna return to enjoying life before technology exists. I'm gonna smell the wind, gonna taste the food and I'm gonna see people, real people. So if you cannot reach me sometimes, well, just let me do my 'disconnected' moment for a while, OK?


 

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

The rocky boat of marriage

And as an avid TV watcher, one of my most favourite channels is E! Yes, like any normal woman in the world, I love to hear news of other people, err, celebrities I mean. And now that I have my own family the newest story that grabs my attention is the Gosselin family split-up. In case you don't know, the Gosselin family is the well-known family of the reality show "John and Kate plus 8." Yes, a family with EIGHT children: a pair of twins and a group of sextuplets. And you think you have such a huge responsibility hah? He he.

Anyway, the shows is about how the couple, Jon and Kate, that are trying to cope with issues of raising eight children. From the shouting, the travelling, the potty training to making new rooms for the kids. Kate shouted a lot to both Jon and the children especially during the last few episodes, but I guess that's what people do when they have to raise eight individuals in similar ages. Jon however cannot cope with the pressure of both his marriage and the family's TV show so he ended up having several so-called 'affairs'. I even found a picture of him with a young lady … and he's wearing earrings! Again, from the TV, I found out that Kate also did some 'naughty' stuff. She has a bodyguard (what for? I dunno) and the media portrayed her as a very bossy person which is why the family has so many 'ex nannies'. But I have no right to judge them. Life must be hard for them and I can tell from the show that they did everything they could for the children. I was just upset to hear about the splitting up and apparently the divorce.

What I learn from this kind of situation is that, at some point your 'boat of marriage' would hit rock bottom, storm or even tidal waves. Some of use survive, some don't. I have some friends who had been through such times and eventually split-up. There is this couple that split up because of financial problem. Another, because there are too many people involved in the marriage: the husband, the wife and the lover. I even found a marriage that ended because the 3rdperson instead of a lover is …. The mother in law.

Sometimes I wonder, is there such a mantra for having a harmonious family? I always say tolerance, but I guess patience is also a key. Before we got married it feels like eternity to wait for a call from our then-boyfriend. But after the lavish wedding party, we have to deal with not only the kissing and cuddling, but also with our spouse's bad breath, his habit of leaving the toilet seat up or the all too-spicy food. For me in the end, there's no perfect plan to split-proof our marriage. What we can do is to make sure that when the hard time comes, we have to put our common sense in our heads and work from there.

And oh, I guess having a dinner for two in the weekends also works. *wink-wink*


Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Feeding Rania with love

I started feeding Rania -my now 11 months old baby girl- with solids around six months after her birth. And boy, how she refused….. I need to try several brands of instant baby food before I finally found her favorite. I've tried baby rice cereal, baby cornflakes, baby porridge, baby biscuits; all kind of foods that starts with the word 'Baby' in the front. I've tried all the flavor too: apple, banana, peach, chocolate, strawberry, vanilla even some strange 'exotic' flavor that even I'm not familiar with : peach with sweet potato (what a weird combination),fig with raisin (what?), pomello with beetroot (even I won't eat that). And the taste? They are either too bland or too sour for Rania, the picky eater.

I thought at first this eating-game would be much easier when she's bigger and more conscious, because, maybe, just maybe she starts to grow her hungry pangs. But hell no… the stuff that grow are her legs and tricky brain as her angelic wings and the HALO over her head shrink.

When she started to crawl, then the eating-game developed into a game of cat and mouse, hit and run. Whenever I come with a bowl and spoon and put her on her chair – yes, she has her own pretty yellow chair with cushion and straps – she freaks out. In some events I have to put her on my lap as an alternative. But just when I turn to fill up the spoon, voila, within second she's either half a room away or slipping under the computer table… or in some extreme cases, pressing the buttons on the TV side, changing the channel. The game ends up with me running like a frenzied zombie and scoops her up back to my lap. Not really the end, because I still have to 'swing the spoon' in front of her mouth and say ''aaaaaahhh open your mouth Rania please…", then wait for miracle to come. If she opens her mouth –that's the miracle – I spoon the food in. If not… well, this is where another game starts. It's called the "'Put the chocolate cookie in front of her mouth and when she opens up, scoop in the real food, quick!" And of course, Rania hates this game.

Not only did Rania learn about eating solids this past couple of months, I made some self discovery too. I never thought I have enough the much-needed patience, tolerance and perseverance to conform to a baby roadrunner like her. If she refuses to eat the homemade porridge I made for her and demands for the peanut butter sandwich that I'm having instead, then I need to be tolerant. If she doesn't fancy sitting in her crowning chair during a meal, then I need to be patient and let her sit on my lap. Moreover, if she runs - err I mean crawls - around the room when it comes to meal times, then I need to be firm. And of course, I need to develop a lot of imaginations to come up with mad games, like the "put the chocolate cookie" game. But at the end of the day, no matter how little vegetables Rania eats, we both laugh it out. I would watch her sleep with a smile on her face, have my sentimental cry and realized how much I love her.

Rania is now 11 months old and now she's more tolerable to food, though I still play the "put the chocolate cookie" game occasionally. Up to this day, I still haven't found the right formula to teach her to eat well but I'm sure I'll find one soon. I'm not going to rush it though, because no matter how mischievous Rania is she is only an 11 months baby. I'll have her whole juvenile years to teach her on being independent, let alone on finishing her vegetables portion; so I won't rush it all in the first year. Besides, she has taught me the greatest teaching of all: liberation of my inner unconditional love.

He loves me, he loves me not

Here is a writing of mine, a task from my recently finished Writing Class. It's a review of a movie called "À la folie…pas do tout" in which we all watched it together.

À la folie…pas do tout (2002)

(He loves me, he loves me not)

If you spot À la folie…pas do tout (2002) movie
poster
and assumed it to be a romantic comedy, well, you can kiss your assumption goodbye. It's actually a smart psychological drama with a twist, an imaginative French twist, that is.

Angelique (Audrey Tautou), the imaginative and talented art student falls in love with Loïc (Samuel Le Bihan), a cardiologist, and throughout the movie, we see her hard yet always-failed attempts to make him leave his pregnant wife, Rachel (Isabelle Carré). The first half of the movie then implicitly brings us the platonic love story from Angelique's viewpoint; her disappointments towards Loïc's attitude to her suicide attempt. But from there, it winds back and explains the same events from a different point of view. Then abruptly, the second part of the movie becomes a unique obsession suspense cum psychological flick instead of a regular love drama, with a twisting end that'll make your jaws drop. For that, we have to thank Laetitia Colombani as director.

The young French writer/director has an ability to build tension using arty setting; a brainy example is when a frighten Loïc found a stunning adult size mural of him by Angelique made from everyday items, including a dried rose he gave first time they met! Colombani, who also made the script along with co-writer Caroline Thievel, has cleverly presented a story of delusion and false perceptions in a thrilling yet entertaining way. It gets the tension of Fatal Attraction (1987) with the entertaining factors of a romantic comedy flick.

Tautou, forever known as Amélie in Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (2001), is pretty convincing in portraying the cheerful-yet-tricky-erotomaniac Angelique. Her big-brown eyes are the best camouflage to hide Angelique's lunacy. One loophole of the movie conversely, is the rather clichés performance and dialogues by Le Bihan resulting from a slightly unripe characterization of Loïc's (such as Loïc final meet up with Angelique). But this is only Colombani's first full-length movie, others being short ones. So we can expect more clever ideas coming from her, similar to her newest Mes stars et moi (2008).

Once the credit rolls, trust me, you'll be seeing crazy in-lovers in a new perspective. Next time your (girl) friend is in love; go ask yourself the same question as the tagline of the flick: "Is she crazy in love, …..or just CRAZY?"

Rating : ☺☺☺☺ (4 stars) Worth Watching

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Honey, I really need a bigger closet, please…

I just made a blog entry about smart shopping, and boy… If I could only apply that to myself… on Fashion shopping. See, I'm so bad at fashion shopping, because I always think not once, not twice, but thrice when buying a clothing or any jewellery. And when I have made up my mind, it's either: a) they have run out of my size (which could be an M or XL or even XXL, depends on my body parts), or b) the items I want has just sold out. Or in other times when I don't think too much on something, I would buy stuff like a long glittery silver skirt that only looks good in the shop's mannequin but definitely will make my bum look one extra size bigger ( like my bum is not big enough already…).

A couple of weeks ago when I went to Bangkok (and boy, it was a heaven for shoppers), I went to places that were mentioned in shopper's paradise bible. But what did I buy? A pink rock-star-style shirt that's too short (again, not good because bum is not covered), 3 tights that are all too short or too small (those skinny Thai people!), 2 summer tops that are too revealing, and a gold summer dress that's too 'Goldie' (I didn't even dare to use it for a high tea event last weekend). Good buys? Yes. Wearable? No. To be part of unused-closet-collection and wardrobe closet filler? Definitely.

Have you seen this beer commercial where the homeowner shows her girlfriends a walk-in closet on her housewarming party? Well, if only I could have one walking closet like that then this problem will likely be solved. Because I could just throw in all my fashion items since I developed my fashion awareness 13 years ago, and I could have a huge collection of clothing that probably would fit an entire village in Malacca. Of course, if those villagers are willing to wear a 10-year-old extra-mini skirt from forever 21; or a 15 year old bohemian top from banana republic. Or, I can just make myself a personal fashion museum of unique-cum- weird and wonderful fashion taste. But anyhow, I have to live with the fact that there will be no walk-in closet , at least until the next 5 years -unless my cat's neighbour suddenly died and the owner becomes so sad he just left and leave his condo for me, THEN I can build my walking closet – the only problem is my neighbour doesn't own a cat.

So, instead of bragging about a bigger closet, or a closet filled with unused items, I'm thinking of to just be self-assured and wear them all, for the sake of 'reduce, reuse, recycle' concept. So next time you see me with a too-revealing top or a too-mini skirt, please don't be surprised, I'm just trying to force myself to be a smart shopper. (Blaaaaaaahhh).

Friday, 12 June 2009

Smart Shopping

In recession days like now, not only fashion-shopping budget needs alteration, grocery shopping too. You'll be amazed at how much you can save up. Some are tips I found on the net and some are based on my own experience.

  1. If it's cheaper, buy non-perishable-every day-use items in bulk.

    This includes soaps, toothpaste, sugar, shampoo, oil etc. Even baby diapers. Some bathing items or toothpastes sometimes come in packet of several bottles/ tubes with of course, whooping discounts.

  2. For meat, veggies, or chicken, (if you feel like it though) buy them in frozen form. I know a hypermarket than sells frozen chicken for 4.5 SGD…. For FOUR pieces of chicken! Yes the chicken is a bit small, but I think it's worth it especially if you only have a small family (and it's Halal too). Some hypermarket sells 1 kg bag of frozen mixed vegetable, I even found one hypermarket that sells frozen RAW SPINACH (though it's quite difficult to find them).
  3. Why buy things in bulk and frozen state? To cut your (yes, I know you!) almost-daily trip to the supermarket. You see, each time we go to a supermarket we'll ended up with at least one item that fits into the category of so-called "useless buying." Like a pudding mix, or cake concoction that rots in the deep corner of kitchen shelf. So…. Fewer trips to supermarket, less useless buying … more savings. Capish?
  4. Rearrange your kitchen shelf and food storage shelf to be observable. Once your food storage is visible and organized, you'll know which items you need to buy and how much. So you won't buy the wrong item, buy too much, or too little.
  5. Need some household items but short of budget or just need some semi important stuff? Buy it in a two dollars store instead of a hyper mart and you will cut some cost. In Singapore, you can find this kinda store in 3 or 4 malls throughout the island. Yes, I know some of you will laugh at me when you read this.

    "Shopping in a two dollars store? C'mon! It's all cheap stuff!" Yes, it's true, it's cheap, but cheap doesn't mean it's not functional. Buy things here that are functional and unnoticeable. Most of the stuffs in the store are of good quality, but STILL you have to keep your eyes on. For example, you can buy some freezer bags in here but check for one with good material with more than 12 bags. Some boxes only contain 10 or even 7 freezer bags, but if you're lucky you can find a box with 20 freezer bags.

    Other stuff I recommend to buy here are storage or organizing boxes (see tips number 4), brooms and sweepers (but check the materials), and other organizing materials (cable and cords de-tangler, racks, small garbage cans, etc). But I don't recommend buying, for example, items of personal hygiene, like soap, toothpaste or face scrubber. For this kind of items, price talks honey.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

End Hunger, Walk the World, Spread the Word.

Since Daddy is away this weekend, Rania and I don't have any specific plan to do. So when a good friend of us friend, Korin, informed us about a Free Walk charity event by UN World Food Programme (WFP) called End Hunger: Walk the World, I certainly don't wanna miss it. So there we were this morning, arriving at 9am in F1 Pit Stop Building, me, a baby, a backpack full of baby food and milk with a yellow buggaboo stroller. At first, Rania liked the Walk, but she cried at the end of it because she just can't bear the heat. Poor baby, she looked red, wet and crying, totally not a good view. But she smiled a bit after she tasted the free Conello ice cream provided by Unilever. Ha ha.
But the point that I want to share is about the objective of the Walk. It is to make efforts to build awareness of child hunger and raise funds for the WFP. Hundred of millions children in fact go to bed hungry everyday, and almost half of them are girls, who do not attend school. So WFP raise some money through this programme to provide them with free meals at school and some food to take home to, with an expectation that their parents might be encouraged enough to send their children, especially girls, to school. I just read the website, that it takes only 19 cents USD to help a child a free meal at school, and with 34 USD, you can provide a child with school meals for an entire school year!

Although I did not give a donation directly at the event ; the crying baby just keeps me occupied, I plan to do it online. For more info you can visit http://www.wfp.org/schoolfeeding. You can donate via this this link http://wfp.aidmatrix.org/

Imagine, 19 cents for a free meal, even our afternoon tea cost 10 times more! And next time if your about to spend some 40 bucks on a fashion belt that will only add to your collection of one-time-wear fashion items, think about a year supply of food to an underpriviledged girl.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Giggle giggle

Rania's acts everyday just mesmerize me. I would record or make picture of them from my phone and play it before going to bed and just laugh over it with my husband. Including this one where she giggles over small stuff. We played it back to her and she just pointed the screen and giggled back, like she understood that it was a video of her!

I just cherish them at the moment because it's probably the last time she would act like that, because tomorrow, she might do the same act differently :D



video

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Kaypoh Aunties and Uncle

When I first saw the Kindness Movement Singapore commercial on TV a couple of weeks ago - about a girl who saw people do small stuff that helps others- I put a smirk upon my face. First because I think it's a unique campaign which I have yet to see in other countries. And second, because I believe this movement comes up just at the right moment.
Forgive me for saying this, but other than Hongkong, I experience most of my 'ungracious manner' nightmare(s) here, in Singapore.
Yes, almost 99% of people I met here in Spore are nice.
Yes, I do have met not so friendly people in other countries that I've visited, even in my own, Indonesia.
But here, in Singapore, those unfriendly gestures came from people that are supposed to help you. Take for example taxi cab drivers. My goodness, I can ask 100 people about any incidents involving cabbies and they would give 110 stories instead.
Other culprit includes Bus Drivers, Food Stall workers, Guard House officers and just this afternoon, a bathroom cleaner just made it into the list! I couldn't not believe it. Just this afternoon a bathroom cleaner literally SHOUTED to a friend who brought her baby in pram to the restroom "BABY NO THIS LEVEL, BABY LEVEL 3, BABY LEVEL 3!" So she, of course, explained that it was her, the mother who wants to go to the bathroom. So the cleaner, blushed, instead of saying sorry, replied back : "THEN QUEUE, QUEUE!" Which was actually a very foolish statement. Because there was nobody else in the bathroom!
Well, I discussed it with my hubby what to do should we encounter this kind of behaviour. In conjunction with the Kindness Movement (blaaaaah), I don't think shouting back would be the answer. I think what's best is to show them educated behaviour, talk to them in crisp - and not broken- English ..... and tell them ( as what I always do) : "Don't shout and be angry laaah, we're no foreigners here so we know the rules laaahhh."
Again, I'm happy that most of the Singaporean that I met are nice and genuine people, and some silly kay-poh aunties and uncles won't ruin my wonderful days here! :P

Friday, 15 May 2009

The feature writing class, and why I do look like a 4th year undergrad student

I've been blogging for like 4 years now. My first blog was a mixed blog of Bahasa and English, and was on blogspirit .com. But after abandoned it for quite a while, err like 5 months, the domain was taken by a new user. Then friendster came along, equipped with a Blog for its users. So for a couple of years I filled up my friendster blog with my daily log in Bahasa and English.
After moving to Singapore, becoming a SAHM - stay at home Mom with many stories and experiences of motherhood, I decided to give my blogging a twist. I made a new blog in Blogger, , added some ads to it, made it 100% in English, and updated it whenever I am off duty from mummy hood.
Then I became so drawn into, and realized that I actually have a 'thing' for writing. So when I noticed an ads of a writing class, I said, why not?
So starting early April until last week of May, I'm officially student of a Feature Writing class. The experience of coming back to study in a classroom with other students was very entertaining. As well as the course material itself. I had to research, worked on some specific kind of writing, read some columns for comparison... I even wrote down and print out my homework even when I know it was not for submission. Talking about stuff I wouldn't normally do in my previous study, ha ha!
The course was taught by a somewhat famous local writer and poet named Felix Cheong. He was nice and even gave us an opportunity to tail him off an interview.
A funny story actually happened on that occassion. Felix introduced me as his intern and one of his students so the interviewee and some PR persons on the interview assumed I was a final year student from NUS or NTU (he taught in one of the Unis). Therefore, when Felix told them that I was actually from his "adult" class and that I was a mother of a -then- 8 months old baby, everyone's jaw just just dropped! Some of them even apologized to me for the false assumption. But I was OK and laugh it all off. I mean, why would I be angry if people thought that I look younger that I really am? Which also means, that those Younger Looking Balm freebies from Clarins really do works! :p

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Taken, Wolverine, The International: The review

April and May is actually the best time to go to the cinema. Because good 'not-made-for summer-blockbuster' movies usually come out at this time of the year. Typical of this kind of movie is an action or drama movie from big or semi-big studio, with somewhat well known actors. Taken and The International fall into this category. Wolverine however, fits into a 'pre-summer blockbuster' movie. Basically, it's a supposedly blockbuster movie, but isn't competitive enough to be released in the summer.
Anyway and anyhow, here's my review:
Taken
Storyline, OK. Actors : somewhat OK, Liam Neeson is the only famous actor in this film. The dialogue was in English and French, some also in Croatian and even Arabic. The story is about an ex CIA agent who searched for his kidnapped daughter in France, allegedly a victim of human trafficking. I vowed to sleep while watching this film - hubby tricked me into watching this one- because I generally don't like the idea of the movie, but in the end, the film had moved me. Not only that I was fully awake by the end of the film, my heart was pumping blood, hard. An OK background story, but nice Plot and twist. Good formula of action and drama.
Wolverine:
Talk about Franchise. The fourth installment of the X-Men Genre, X-Men has proved itself as a very powerful franchise. Meaning we know already what to watch and and what to expect from the movie, and yet, still willing to spend 10 bucks + booking fee to watch it at the cinema. The title of the film actually already explains like 50% of the story : it's the storytelling of the origins of wolverine, prior to joining X-Men. So we'll see wolverine in his usual charm, running around chasing bad guys half naked with claws coming out from his fists. Blah.
Storyline: predictable. Actors and acting: quite OK. Dialogue: cornish. But CGI, entertainment factor and all : Perfect.
The International
I really don't know where to start. Well, the story is about an Interpol officer joining forces with a New York Assistant District Attorney to bring down a powerful yet corrupt Financial Institution. Supposedly good, right? It's a conspiracy theory kind of movie, except that, it is lack of conspiracy and too much violence instead.
Confession of an economic hit man as background story : check. Die another day - James Bond attitude : check. A bad and open ending: check.
Even the big name of Naomi Watts and Clive Owen can not save this film from doom.
Advice: Watch Taken and Wolverine (or the latter, you can buy the DVD instead), avoid The International, AT ALL COST.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

What makes a good mother?

What makes a good mother?

A stay at home mum? A mother who breastfeeds and changes nappies? A mother who always say 'yes' to her child?


What makes a bad mother?

A mum who works and has activities of her own? A mother who regularly watches TV and still has time to read books? A mother who didn't breastfeed her baby?


These questions have been running around in my head chasing each other's tails like crazy. And yet I couldn't figure out the answer. So I decided to rewind my memory just trying to seek out some 'aha' moments. (duh! I sound like Oprah don't I?)


Anyway, once upon a time, I had lunch with some bunch of girly mums. We talked and talked and reached a point of discussion of why my baby didn't like to be breastfed because I only produce so little breast milk. And out of the blue, one 'good' mum said that it happened because "You are not passionate enough in breastfeeding your baby." I of course, was left speechless with her statement. Other, told me how a good mother she is by not working and always brings her daughter wherever she goes, shopping, that is.


So a couple of week later, I joined again this group of mums for a shopping spree. I arrived at the scene to find a stroller with a crying –hysterically crying- toddler inside, while the mum – the so called good mum- was inside an fashion store, mix and matching some items. Then the procedure repeated itself in a few more stores. Mum saw a bargain / nice shoe / nice dress / nice earring; mum went in store, left the stroller till baby screamed; mom went to cashier, finished shopping, and strolled down with baby for a while. Then repeat. When I was about to go home, mum got shoes, dress and matching sets of earrings. And baby was in "temper tantrum mode: ON."


On a similar occasion, we, of course, discussed our recent days. I told them I am taking a writing course (stay tune for more stories on my writing course). Some of them became bug-eyed, like saying "what is she doing? Taking a course? In writing?" One of them told me, though, "a writing, a hand-writing course?" she said, "you should ask my daughter to teach you, her teacher told me she has a good handwriting." I again, of course, was IMPRESSED.


I saw moms who said she "did all things possible for her children, all on her own", and yet gained no respect from her kids.


I saw moms who stay home and do all the chores by herself and yet didn't have her words listened by her daughter.


I grew up seeing my mother doing tons of activities.


Some of my friends grew up watching her mother work from 9 to 5 and yet still be able to comment on her daughter's hideous outfits.


I know a mom who didn't breastfeed her daughter at all, but 15 years later spent a day off of work with her daughter to seek David Archuletta's autograph.


So what makes a good mum?


It's not merely about breastfeeding and changing diapers ONLY. It's not only about breastfeeding your daughter exclusively ONLY. It's also about what you "do" in your life and how she sees you as a person. Are you in a time warp that stuck on the day that she was born? Or are you developing yourself?


I guess it's about evolving. Yup, a good mum is an EVOLVING Mum. This means not only that you nurture your child while she grows; you nurture yourself and grow too. So one day you can answer her questions on herbivorous dinosaurs, instead of thinking that it's a new line of shoes by Todd Oldham. And growing and evolving, can only be achieved by being active, a process of learning and adapting. To go out alone without her (well, ONLY if you have somebody to take care of your child) is not a crime. That's what I call 'educated risk'. I don't' think you can do no harm going out once in a while, shopping with your girlfriends, take an art class, get that manicure. And even if you have nobody to take care of your baby, you can always count on the baby's father, right? For example, I know a mum who takes painting lesson during weekend when 'papa' is home.


A couple of hours a week will do, sort of having a lunchbreak from 'mummyhood'. I think it's better than pushing strollers down the shopping lane with a hysterical baby inside.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

what is your ‘ red balloon’?

From DIVA, October 29, 2006.

what is your ‘ red balloon’?

As if they were a bouquet of red balloons, you have been holding on to wish after wish for years now. Today, one of those balloons might slip your grasp and sail away from you, but you shouldn’t run after it. Watch it float higher, to land in a place you’ll never know. Then, realize that it didn’t actually elude your grasp. You consciously LET GO. Value the fact that YOU were the powerful force in that scenario and then go wish yourself another red balloon….

PS: Gonna miss you my red balloon…

PS: I don't remember wheter this is really my writing, or a made out poem from cut and paste of a chain email. But I think I wrote it myself. Blah. Whatever I did, just enjoy.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Pre-Summber Blockbuster I can't wait to see

1. Wolverine
Having seen all the series from the franchise AND had been a mad, mad X Men card collector for quite some time, I desperately longing to see the film. Searched the net for the so called ' leak' but couldn't find it anywhere. Anyway, I'd love to see the story behind the 'making' of a wolverine. Wolf serum? Adamantium skeleton? Let's just watch.

2. Star Trek XI
I'm a Trekkie. Period

3.Transformers II
Robotic Cars, animatic transformation AND a background story that comes from a nostalgic 80s Cartoon Show. All the contributing factors in making a good action movie and a box office, too.

4. Terminator: Salvation
Just love the connors and T something something - err I mean Arnold's character. Love to see HOW the story evolves. The last installment just told us the virus had made weapons to act on their own. Now we'll see the explanation of the time travel by John Connor's father. Hopefully.

5.Angels and Demon
Simple, watched and read Da Vinci Code, would love to see it transferred into moving pictures.

Titles I would like to see in the near future however:
1. Wolverine II : The wedding
2. Star Trek 23 : The search for Dr Xavier and Jean Luc Picard
3. Wolverine vs terminator : Battle for earth
4. Transformers VI : the time travel trek to the stars
5 Angels tranform to demons
6. Wolverine vs Terminaor vs Transformers : the battle begins
7. Wolverine vs Terminator vs Transformers II : between the angels and the demons

Just some pics

Just some pics I got from my weekend dinner las saturday.











Grandma's old cup
Loc : PS Cafe














Smoked Salmon / Sashimi Pizza ?
Loc : Ben & Jerry's Dempsey

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Things in life you can't change, even if you want to.

1. Your birthday (& funeral date)
Yep... Our births and deaths, along with judgement day, are waaaay out of our knowledge. And like it or not, 'He' had already settled it loooong long time ago, even before the making of the universe.
2. Your Parents and Siblings
There were days when we hoped we become part of The Osbourne or the Hilton clan. But, we merely regular people, so get real. Always respect your parents and your siblings, because just like you can't choose your parents, they can't choose you as their offspring.
3. Your Race
You can change the front cover of your passport, but can never change your heritage, or your race. It sticks with you wherever you go.
4. You Physique
Michael Jackson can erase his cappuccino -or dark mocha-pigments out of his skin and flattened his puffy nose. But people will always know him as "that black kid, the youngest of the Jacksons five". Sure you can straighten your frizzy curly hair, but your primary school friends will always call you "curly". The point is : accept who you are and what He has given you. Inacceptance will only lead to pointless unsatisfaction.

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Minimo

I'm just checking out some photography blogs and I just realize that now there's a digital Lomo camera - called MiniMo. I remember I saw it in once in one of toy outpost cubicle (Plaza Singapura Level 7), but forgot to note down its website. Wonder if anyone is willing to share me some infos on Mini Digital Lomo Camera or MiniMo.

Rania and the iPod



Mommy, can you add more disney songs to my ipod's playlist? :P

Thursday, 2 April 2009

The biggest loser is the winner

The biggest loser. It's the name of a reality show in US. No, it's not about gambling - that's what I first thought too - it's about losing weight.
A bunch of obese contestants gather up in a ranch, work out and try to lose weight... the old fashion way. Yep right, diet and exercise only. Therefore no tummy tuck, no acai drinks, not even diet pills. And man, do they lose weight! Some of them only lost a couple of pounds ... but some of them lost more than 40% or 120 pounds!
But then again, the show is not about just losing weight. It's about effort, endurance, hard will and getting to know your own self.
It shows me that the best thing in life is not to be thin and beautiful. It's about to be healthy, happy with who you are AND what you have in life.

Truly, the contestant has inspired me... nope, they THINSpired me.

So, starting tomorrow, I'm gonna start losing weight and exercising....and eating healthier food....

(Of course AFTER I finish this full bag of Famous Amos cookies, PROMISE!)

Thursday, 26 March 2009

To wean or not to wean

I've heard that weaning period is one of the most difficult periods in a mother's life. And I surely agree.
Not only it's difficult to prepare the food itself, things become more complicated since Rania is a picky eater!
I've tried rice porridge, steam rice with vegetables, all those gerber and heinz bottled food... and her favorite? Just a simple 2 scoops of instant rice milk from nestle. With nothing.

So yesterday I came up with an idea of mixing the rice milk with a stash of blended asparagus and water. Well, she didn't take it well. I decided to give it a try and boy, now I understand why she didn't like it.
So I made a conclusion : even babies like tasty food and their taste buds to be tantalized. So again, with a little bit of kitchen-experiment, I finally came up with a recipe that Rania likes : rice porridge with cheddar cheese with asparagus and corn soup. The porridge will her a full stomach, the cheese to satisfy her palate (if she has any already) and the asparagus and corn for fiber intake. And Voila. A happy Mama and happy Rania... and a gentle tummy. That's right, since we introduced her the recipe, she's been poopoo-ing daily!

Friday, 6 March 2009

Is friendster dying?

Welcome to the Internet era, where people all over the world, thanks to such social networking site can gather up and find long lost friend, relatives. Friendster, was my first social networking site that I opted. It was fun at first but then became boring after a year or two because updates were not that often.
So first there was friendster and now, we have facebook.
It was really fun to see the updates of other "facebookers" in real time. It was so fun, more people are joining it, not only young people and adults, but also seniors and primary school students! There are even some people I know who learned to use the net and laptop for the first time, so they'll be able to have an FB account to connect with their old friends.
In my facebook friends list for example , you'd find : My Auntie in Netherlands, my cousin in Borneo, a girl I met while preparing my Belgium visa, my long lost primary school friends, and my husband relatives whom I have yet to meet... and even my Mom!
I think that the status updates part was the most interesting part of facebook, because you can just see what others feel or think. I remember I used it once to deduct the relationship status of the ex boyfriend of my relative, how strange!
It was fun to see the updates, comments, and photo updates of your friends, but imagine, if you can do it to others then others can also do the same to you! Or in other words : loss of privacy. It utterly dismayed me when I found out that anyone on my friends list (remember, sometimes we accept a friend request just in the name of courtesy. Haaaa, I'm sure you do it too he he!!!) can comment in anything I do with my account. Like for example changing your status from married to "single" - a friend of mine has tried this by the way- and the whole world would try to figure out your whole story. Once, 10 minutes after uploading a picture, I found 20 comments on the recent update pic, which turned out was a conversation between two relative that has nothing to do with the pic, or with me : they were just testing their account, how silly!
Things can get a bit messy, like when your OLD pictures starts showing up, showing you in party(ies!) in which I look my best, or worst! (ehm, yeah right!), in primary school uniform (and yes, I look so damn SKINNY!) or in your high school uniform (wearing BRACES!!!). Especially when you don't want certain people to see them, like your future employer, your aunties, your in-laws, ha ha! That's what I mean!
But, all in all, facebook is the best tool for making and gathering (old) friends and family. At least now I know how my old friends would look in case we accidentally meet at the mall. And I can keep in touch with my distant relative in a distance. And at least I can use my status updates for anything. Like what I did just yesterday : begging for a free Jason Mraz concert ticket. Bwahaha!

Ps : I'm not analyzing nor questioning the dying of friendster. I'm just a facebookers. :p

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Mommy, it hurts!

You never realize how difficult it is to be a mother until you feed her, and you hear her cry for help. And I truly understand the meaning of those words today. 
Rania is now 6 months old, the starting of weaning period. So just like any mother, I've been trying my ass off to feed her. And just like any baby would at first, she refused. It's either she spit it out or she threw off the spoon. Papaya, peaches, or banana. Instant milk rice, bottled pureed or real fruit, I've tried it all. So I thought, what the heck, if she doesn't want to eat then she doesn't want to eat. Well, guess again. 
Today, just this afternoon, suddenly she had constipation, it was so bad, I had to dug out some of her stuff! And what's make it worse, she cried like hell so for a baby as quiet as Rania, that means she really is in deep pain.
After an OMG moment (read: panic attack) at the doctor, she finally can pass some stuff. Like some VERY BIG, THICK stuff. Man! I never thought baby can pass out poo like that!
So in conclusion, turns out that she actually HAS to eat, especially fruit that's rich with dietary fiber. SHOOT! so that's mean I have to FORCE her to eat. 
The moral of the story is: when you are a mom, you have to do your duty even if it will make your baby uncomfortable, like forcing her to eat stuff that she hates. It's better to do that, than to hear her crying for help, trust me. And oh yeah, and the second moral of the story, baby poo stinks, ugh !

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Hello From Jakarta (3)

For those of you who thinks that Jakarta is Hell, think again. I went to a hectic trade center (yes, hectic like hell) yesterday and found this baby store. There is not even a proper signage or placement shelf, but the stuff that you found were no lesser than branded stuff in a pricey baby store like mother care or the first few years (In Singapore). And the price? 30%, 40% or even less than 50% off!!
I found this jumparoo ( just like the name, it's like a jumping seat for babies over 6 mths) in Singapore for 240 SGD.

We planned to buy it at first, but then decided to spare some time to think about it. Then, yesterday, out of the blue I found the SAME ITEM exactly, sitting on the floor of the cheap baby store, for how much? No, not 200, not 150, not even 100 SGD... it's only 87.5 SGD!!! CHEAP LIKE HELL!! That's less than half from the original price of a branded baby store in Singapore! I bought the item directly without further ado. Now, I'll search for more bargain items in more places. Perhaps some designer baby bag? Hi hi hi. VIVA Jakarta!

Hello from Jakarta (2)

I promised you all i'll write once something interesting came up. And well, something did come up alright. 
One day after I and Rania arrived, my brother came up with high fever. Followed by my Father, and then my mother's helper. We thought at first it was  just a common cold, but the fever wont come down even after a booze of antibiotics. After 2 days of uncertainty, the lab test result finally proved it that it was actually DENGUE FEVER. Gosh, 3 people from the same house was infected by the same virus!
For those of you who didn't know, dengue fever was spread by a mosquito called aedes aegypty. The infected would have myalgia, loss of orientation, cold sweats and super-high fever. There is no vaccine nor antibiotics to kill the virus, and the virus would leave only after 7 days. The treatment would be: to drink a lot of water to flush out the virus, and paracetamol to treat the fever and the aches/ myalgia. 
To get rid of the virus in the house, and to prevent it from spreading, we need to kill the mosquitoes and the larva by a process called fuming, or spraying the house with some sort of anti-mosquito killer spray.The fuming took a couple of hours, and left my parent's house with a distinct smell that can even make a cat puke. 
Anyway,  I just hope this is the first  and the last time for us to have the disease in our home.  

OK, since its already 11pm Jakarta time, I think I need to go. So see you in the morning, hope to bring you more stories than just a mosquito disease. 

Friday, 13 February 2009

Give me some choco please, it's valentine's day!

When I was a kid, I cherished Valentine ’s Day like every normal teenager would do. I would cry whenever I hear any valentine’s inspired songs. Cards, Chocolate and valentine emails. Ouch, so corny.
But as I grew older, I feel that valentine has lost its meaning. I’ve tried to look for the real reason behind the story of Valentine ’s Day and I don’t find the story meaningful cum romantic. Well, what’s so romantic about a priest or a saint who got beheaded because he helped young couples getting married and declaring their love? So later in life, I concluded that Valentine, the same as Halloween, is just a big conspiracy of major corporations that sell: greeting cards, candies and chocolates, balloon and flowers. And oh, Teddy bears and plush toys (FYI, I got one when I was 21, ha ha!).
But then again, now that I’m married, I look back and try to reveal what made me think that way. Was I just being skeptical, or being cynical? Because there’s a big difference between those two. Then after carefully investigating the attestations (d’oh…) I concluded that I was just being cynical. I mean, what’s so bad about giving cards and stuff, as a symbol of our extra attention? And you just don’t have to give it only on valentine’s day, you can give it anytime. And if you wanna give something extra on Feb-14, then go ahead!
Hence for me now, every day would be Valentine ’s Day. I don’t need any cards to tell my hubby and my daughter, others surround me, or even mother nature me how much I care for them. I can do it verbally, or by doing something valuable. In fact, we can only show your affection to Mother Nature only by ‘greening’ our routine. (Well, you can hug a tree or give it chocolate, but it won’t love you back, so there’s no use).
But in case anybody would like to give me a V-day present, I’d love to have chocolate. In fact I still love it, whether it’s valentine’s day or not. Hi hi.

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Just some silly post from Jakarta

Finally.. I have arrived in this busiest city in the region... oops sorry.. the CROWDIEST (is there such a word?) in the region...

The sight, smell and sound...

Jakarta, Jakarta, Jakarta.. I welcome my self in ur arm (he he he..)

Rania was a bit awkward when we arrived last nite, we spent like an hour trying to calm her down, I guess she was a bit of afraid of the high ceiling and the bright lamps and the BIG room (compared to her room).
But today she's already adjusting, she did some bird watching and met some of her cousins who came by.

AND she ate her first portion of peach and BANANA! and she liked it (although she didn't dig peach that much). I guess deep down inside she's still a tropical girl.

Anyway, gotta go now. I'm gonna keep posting more stories from Jakarta tomorrow.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Rania's New Job : Forest Ranger

Hi, I'm Rania, Boogie-Jungle Ranger




To keep in shape, I do some baby wiggle in the morning


Followed by some push-ups


This is me, look how happy I am with my job!




But, afterwards, I become soo tired...

And my Lovely mum would try to feed me this stuff..
a whole mug of baby rice milk....


well, things still under control at first..

But then I become bored...

... And I ended up pouring the stuff ll over my face... ( Don't I look like Charlie Chaplin?)

Thursday, 5 February 2009

long time no post

hola hola.... Sorry for not posting so long.... Things come up, this and that and suddenly i just forgot to write in my precious bloggie! Hoa! Anyway, just wanna share with you that i'm reading this book called 'momstown' it's like a guide for new mothers about juggling life, family, sort of a survival guide of motherhood! recomended for you mothers outthere! Anyway....i'll be away for quite a while -i'll be going to jakarta for 6 weeks. hopefully i can write some interesting stories from there. Thats all for now, keep watching, ill be loading some ranias photos soon

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Busy Baby

Sea-horse Back ride

Watching TV

Baby sit-ups
YES, I'm A BUSY GIRL...



Friday, 16 January 2009

And there it goes… my Kate Spade Bag…

Yep yep, I know it's silly to write about beauty treatment in between posts about Gaza. But, hey, a girl's gotta write, what a girl has experienced, correct?

Anyway… I went to a facial a couple of days ago. Since I haven't had any facial treatment for the past 1 year, I decided to indulge myself to some sort of 'semi luxurious facial'. Well, it was only my silly excuse actually :p

To make a long story short, I had my appointment at this spa in Orchard. Upon arriving, I told the receptionist I wanted to have a diamond peel facial, which considered as a "middle rank" facial on their menu list. However, she replied by saying that "the therapist will assess your skin first and advise you on the kind of treatment needed." OK I thought, she'll assess me first, but I'm the person who would make the final DECISION, right?

BEEP, WRONG!!

First, she cleaned my face with regular face milk, toner whilst inquiring me with my face care daily routine. Then she quickly made a good look at my face. Need to remind you though; it was done in a dimly lit room. THEN… she carefully told me:

"Your skin is very dry. So you need an extra moisturizing facial. We have one called the 'Super Duper Replenishing Moisturizing Luxurious Crème Facial ' (of course it's not the real name of the treatment lah…)

Feeling suspicious, I asked her about the price. And she said a number that actually can buy a return ticket to Phuket. FOR TWO PERSON!! WTF!! I was like, what?

But pretending to be calm, I asked her if there's such similar facial. And she told me that there's this "Ultra hydrating Masque Vibrating Facial". The cost? An On-SALE Kate Spade bag. Sigh.

Gulping, I told the flawless-skin therapist, "let me just have the diamond peel, OK?"

But she kept on giving me this lecture of how my skin was dry, and I will start and maybe had already starting to have wrinkles. That I have dark spots here and there, and also discoloration and chapped skin in some areas, etc, etc… After 10 minutes of hearing her bragged, I was like, sigh… decided to give it a try. And there it went swiftly, my on-sale-bright-leather Kate Spade Bag. Sniff.

Although feeling a bit ripped off, I decided to enjoy the facial anyway, and luckily I had a very good result. Just a heave a sigh of relief after paying for my 'BAG'….the therapist started to again, give me lectures about skin care… and before I knew she was already trying to sell me these products that would cost me a new GUCCI bag! "C'mon lah, you should take care lah… I can give you some instalment plan you know, 24 months, ain't that cheap, what?" Crazy huh, how they never stopped. This time, I didn't buy her speech.

On my way home, I decided to stop by at WATSON and buy some economical facial care products: a good facial foam, and a good moisturizer that cost me less than 30 bucks. I decided to really take good care of my skin now, to avoid going to some facial therapy in the near future, because I'm hoping to participate in the upcoming GUCCI or KATE SPADE sale: P HELL YEAH!

… And oh yeah, just after 4 days of extra moisturization (blah!) from those inexpensive products, I got my pre-pregnancy glowing-hydrated skin back. Who needs a pot of gold to pay for a glowing skin? Obviously a 'very silly mummy who just couldn't say, NO! to a talkative facial therapist'. Hehehe.