Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Raya Parcel

I do want to write about my raya here but I was caught up with a lot of things and now I am infected with with blocked nose and irritating cough (yet again). I will post my raya experience here next. Perhaps with a picture or two. With the slacked kebaya? Tengoklah..

But now I want to write about this long awaited parcel that have finally arrived. My mother in law posted it. It took two weeks to reach here via normal post, which from the date stamped, I was supposed to receive it on the 17th October. Somehow, maybe some people are too lazy, we only get to collect it today. But better late then never.

The top three photos are my kids particularly Haziq who were very excited. I was correcting him (dengan marah-marahnya) on his Al Qadr tajweed, but he was too distracted that I finally let him go.

Well generally there were lots of kuehs. My mother in law must have thought that I love London Almond so much that she posted them too. You see, I usually give her those for each raya. I am never a fond of modern kueh raya actually, but I guess London Almond is an exception. She gave murukus (lover loves them), kerepek (lover's), tart nenas (I want my mummmmmyyyy's) but one thing that caught me by surprise was she gave me kueh bangkit. Yay!!! I love kueh bangkit. This is the true "don't melt in your hand but melt in your mouth" cookie. Hmmppsss feel them plastering in the mouth. I just love them. And the one that she got for me were the good ones. She must have seen me gluttonning over kueh bangket. Oh I love her.

And she got me ketupat segera Adabi. Yayyyy!! I have been experimenting using plastics, tupperware and was about to go back to my student's day of pressing them in sarung bantal (unused okay). Legaaa.. And not only that, she also got me the plastik tahan panas for more of the easy peasy nasi himpit that will last throughout my stay here, including if I ever call people over. Yayyyy!!!

She also got me a big pack of serbuk kari. Alamak one je? He he. And gula melaka. Ohhh I can already imagine my sago puding and pengat pisangku. And udang kering (dried shrimp). Yayyyyyy sesangat. And ikan bilis (dried anchovies). (Hope the photos are not yucky to some of you). Alamak mine should be the white clean one, but hey beggars cannot be chosers. So yayyy again.

But most importantly my dad passed me the one thing I was in need most. My Jamus (traditional supplement for guaranteed aphrodisiac and energy needed to fulfill the high libido caused by taking the supplement). Love you ayah. Stock good enough to last me until the day I go back home.

Yummeh. Lick lips.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Selamat Hari Raya Semua

Hmm I clearly have missed the timing to wish everyone Selamat Hari Raya. It's a long holiday over there is it? Dang it! I didn't even send well wish emails to my friends. Sigh..

I haven't been feeling myself lately. Not that felling myself is such a great thing but yeah I am a bit off.

Like all mothers with little children, I still put up a facade so that Eid is a joy to my children.

I got all their baju rayas ordered way before fasting. Everyone's baju raya except for Sya was tailored at the tailor over here. And I must say they are quite good at copying. The ladies dress they tailor here looks like it pops out of haute couture cat walk thing. You just bring a photo of a dress you like and they can copy almost verbatim. Serious! My kebaya ada sikit slacklah but you know kebaya and with too much curves, it can post some difficulties. But the boys cekak musang are excellent. They look tremendously good. I even tailored up Haziq's and Jack's samping. Alaaa hensemnya. I sent Sya's baju kurung to Ms Fashion Designer. Sokong bisnis member maaa. (She doesn't do kebaya though)

Then we made up one of the rooms which is suppose to be the guest room. We took the beds out. Lay out new carpets and put up a few bedoin low sofas. Now the room is a majlees for guests to sit about. We had to sacrifice one bedroom of course, but our current living room is too small and it has the TV set. The children, the TV, the adult talking are just uncomfortable. I always avoid inviting people over. Will I start inviting people over after this? Nyeh nyeh.

qatarI think it was a good purchase. You know the kind of purchase that you feel that you manage to get value for money kind of thing. We initially wanted a wall to wall carpet but it was too expensive. So we got the second best thing and bought a really really big carpet. It didn't fit the whole room for the room has an odd shape, but it covers most of the room. The carpet was not the typical carpet that I would buy, but I like it because it is different and it has a picture of a tree. With hanging leaves. I like. I think we need to paint the room. Perhaps moss green. Get some gold frames with arab motifs. Or wall coverings with bedouin patterns. I also want those dangling things to put at the door. You know the beads that hang and get in your way as you want to enter a room. The curtain probably needs to be changed too. The colour is off. They are ugly as well. Bookshelf perhaps. I really like the one they have here.

I bought a few flower pots and plant. Bought some pelita. Have been listening to lagu raya.

Should I make cookies? Hmmm probably not.

I miss lots of things. I listen to raya songs and I think about my dad. I think about my mum. My kids want to go back.

I feel empty.

Selamat Hari Raya. Saya mohon maaf jika ada terkasar bahasa at anytime saya berblog ini.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Word Sunday : Surfeit

Surfeit means

The state of being more than full. Or eating until excessively full.

Which of course during the fasting month, is not a wise thing to do. One of the reasons for fasting is so that we realise how the poor or those who are not fortunate suffered when they had to go without food and drink. How can we empathy when we indulge ourselves excessively during breaking fast?

I am of course guilty as charge.

What with the food I am cooking. However I must announce, unlike the previous years where I throw the excess food, most food I have now are just right. Both in terms of quantity and quality. Ehem ehem.

The thing is I don't really like throwing food away but sometimes some of the kuehs I bought turns out yucky and some siput sedut masak lemak turn out bad. Hmmpphhh.

Now no such thing though. He he. Spring rolls are filled generously. Donuts rich with sugar. Murtabak thick enough for teeth to set in. Home made chilly sauce can be refilled. Soy milk so creamy and tasty. But no air tebu. I want air tebu (sugar cane drink.) Fried mee rich with haiwan. And no food turn out bad.

I digress actually. I wanted to share with you this new word I found. So timely during the month of Ramadhan. Surfeit. At any time do avoid it.

The Prophet said: "Do not eat before you are hungry, and stop eating before you are full". This is the best guideline for dieting.

I should abide it.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Ooopsss in Fasting Month

I had one oopss this fasting month. It was on the first day of fasting. I was boiling the sugar for the keria. I flick the sugar coating on the ladle and licked it after. that's like a subnconcious thing I do while cooking. My lover said, "Woi! Puasalah!" (It's fasting month O' beautiful wife.) I quickly gargle the sweet taste and spit them off.

Haziq had his share too. It was on the second day. JackJack asked for his help to pierce the straw so he could drink his creamy chocolate milk. Out of routine, Haziq sipped a bit. Then when he realise that he was fasting, he panicked. To get rid of the chocolate taste in his mouth he sipped some plain water.

Unlike me, Haziq felt so guilty that he cried telling me this.

Laaa, I told him, it is ok. And he's done good. No worries. Allah knows.

A piece of white cloth that boy.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Word Sunday : Intuition

The last summer I sent Haziq and Batrisyia to swimming classes. The thing is the classes are in another club which we are not a member of, so I couldn't dip in with little Jack. And because I worry about Jack being deprived of the pleasure of paddling in a pool, and will make a scene, Jack and I went to another place instead.

Lover stayed with the two kids. Each time he picked me up, I would almost routinely ask these questions. How did they do? Getting better? What are their progress? Tell me! Tell me everything! Tell me also whether Sya's pink goggles go with her pink suit.

As expected lover would say they are doing good. Haziq is really well. He is not scared of the depth. He can swim in one whole lap. He can dive to the floor. And sya well... she can swim better now but scramble a bit. Sometimes she worries about the depth but she doesn't mind jumping in though. Sya doesn't swim one whole lap like Haziq.

This is of course expected because Haziq had a headstart. He was already learning to swim in school. He was refining his skills in this class. It was expected for Sya to scramble because its new for her and she doesn't have as much energy as her brother.

I routinedly ask these questions each time they finish class and my lover dutily answered their progress.

Until sometime later when I asked the kids to get ready for the class, I noticed Sya's lack of enthusiasm. She took a long time to get ready. She continued watching TV and pretended not to hear me. She even said she didn't want to go swimming.

Hmmppffff. It was QR350 for 12 classes each, do you think I would let her give up like that? I watched her for sometime. Then my intuition tells me, she didn't like the comparison between herself and the brother. Maybe she felt that she was not able to compete with her brother at the rate he is going. And in the last class, the teacher insisted that she get in the depth and she felt scared but he had to pretend that she was not because her brother was not. The last thing she need is a jeer from Haziq. And ayah, yes her beloved ayah, kept saying that her progress is not as well. All she wants is to impress him.

So I told lover, perhaps next time when I asked how the kids are doing. Say good things about Sya. How much she has improved and not make it sound like a comparison with her brother. And of course make sure she heard the conversation as well while pretending that we didn't know she is listening.

Than later both of us will congratulate her and say we are proud that she is good now. She would tell you of course that now she is not afraid of the depth and you would say wow, you are brave.

My lover asked, did Sya tell you this? Did she tell me that she is not happy? I said of course not. Sya wouldn't say such thing. She has far too big an ego to admit. Just call it a mother's intuition. Some things can be read even when no words are spoken.

And wehei it works. She is not as inferior to her brother now. She doesn't take heed of what her brother can do, but rather what she has achieved. Cayalah babe. Picit hidung sikit.

Intuition is almost like clairvoyant kan jill? Mothers can nearly always predict what would happen next with their kids. Remember also we have a hundred eyes. Mothers see it all.

P/S : On another note, my mother knew that I had the thing with that Electrolux salesguy when I was err 15 years old. That guy turned out to be so yucky. Now now now how did she know this. Hadn't I been guarding it well? Intuition eh?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Helping Hand

You know the blessing of Ramadan being far away from a country with those delicious looking Bazaar Ramadhan is that my kids get to eat my food and also experience seeing me do it

Anyway, Batrisyia is always the excited one. She would come in the kitchen, checked the real cooker, open the lid, look at the table, look in the sink and ask, what are you cooking today? Then she would also ask, "Are we going to someone's house?" or "Is someone coming over?" She is asking this because I rarely cook dessert at home unless I am going out or someone is coming over.

Then she would ask, "Can I help?"

Now this is a magic question most of the time. She is always excited to "help". Actually she is always trying to do something but I notice this more during this fasting month since I am doing something every day.

The first time was when I was making keria. I was shaping into a ring and she helped shape it into heart shape. It didn't come out so much like a heart though.

Then she helped me roll the roti jala.

The other day I made sardine roll. She watched me cut off the crusts and roll the bread thin. Then she volunteered. Since I was rushing to do everything before iftar and have not done the main food yet, I let her do them while I filled in the sardines.

Then I have finished mine and was waiting for her batch of bread. I urged her for the rolled bread. Quick Batrisyia I need to fry them up. To this she answered, "Ibu, I am only a little child ok."

Now, that is my daughter for sure.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Word Sunday : Fast and Fasting

Man I haven't been blogging for a bit. Like most bloggers, I have been actively blogging in my head, I think I could puke. Then I wonder if I were to puke, is that consider batal puasa kerana muntah dengan senghaja.

Anywaaaaaaay, I have been occupied. I was trying in vain to finish up the newsletter. Second issue this time round. :D. I was encouraging people to send me articles, in the hope to get more articles of course. And when some do, I don't like them. Ayooo pleaselah don't expect me to put forwarded email articles and lame (in my opinion) outdated stuff. Me no like lah.

This is the most trying fasting month in my life, not counting my first few years of me learning to fast of course. I am still ferrying the kids around. Haziq still has evening class. I have to reschedule everything for both their timetable have changed in completely opposite time. Sya finishes earlier while haziq starts later. And how many time do I have to tell you that it is mega hot out there.

And now there is no bazaar Ramadan here, I had to cook everything, everyday! If before I usually cook up lauks only and buy kuehs from Bazaar Ramadhan. Now I have to make them, if I feel like eating them. The thing is I don't break fast with rice and all. I want kueeehhhhhhhh. Hu hu hu. With the limited time I have at home, I rushed to prepare a decent meal. I have made some and surprise myself. But I am sure those are mere peanuts to most goddesses out there. ;)

But I want my mummy. Her kuehs are always best albeit the presentation is a bit off but seriously all her kueh melayu sungguh mengasyikkan. I know some of her own designated kueh apam are a hit in Muar now that some akak took the recipe from her. I was doing keria and felt like talking to her for tips. I was kneading donut and remembered her fluffy donut.

I want to tell you this ok. You know my late mum..she has some Arabic feature. Sharp nose. Deep set eyes. Sharp feature. Radiant skin. Tall. Rest assured that I don't take after her. The week before Ramadhan, I have been seeing a lot of her. One was almost like her. Her oldself. Like her the last I saw her healthy. At the airport sending me off. The one I hugged tight and drop a few tears on her comforting shoulders.

I thought about my dad during this fasting month. I wondered how is he coping fasting alone. Oh I talk to him often. But emotionally, I wondered how he is.

Then it got me pondering. When we first got married, my lover and I, we often fast together, alone. Then we are blessed with kids and breaking fast can be quite hectic and noisy, but beautiful. There will be time when either of us will have to break our fast alone. I want to savour this moment I have with my family forever. I remebered breaking fast, the whole lot of us at my mum's and my mum prepared so much. So much, I felt like crying now.

My dad remembered like it was only yesterday when he shared his breaking fast with my mum, alone.

Time flies fast. And fasting month is always a reminder of that.

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