Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Then and Now: The cheeky faces

Assalamualaikum wbt..

This is my first attempt and many more to come on doing this {then and now} post. I wish I have taken more pictures AND note to self... I need to work on getting more family pictures!

It is absolutely insane just how fast a baby can grow! and not only them, we are also getting older and older:) I think I'm gonna love doing these Then and Now post, I may make it a post that happens a lot in the future!

Again I say.......what a difference a year makes!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

My banana whoopie pies become muffins

Assalamualaikum wbt..

In this household we take Bananas seriously :D It's one of the best fruits there ever is! Which is why stocking it up on weekends is a must for us.
Do head over here to read about the goodness of this yellow fruit.
Anyway, I've been baking diligently for the past 2 weeks- some with very happy outcome that made our big tum tum thank us and some, not so :)

I came across the recipe for banana whoopie here  and was intrigued how a whoopie pie might taste like. I followed the recipe to the tee and substituted yogurt for the sour cream (coz sour cream are expensive!) and ended with these:

Whoop whoop whoop whoop whoop, oopa whoopie style:

Except I wasn't convince whoopie pies are supposed to be soft with a muffin/ bread like texture. The idea of filling it up with cream cheese in the middle was repulsive for some strange reason. So I popped the 'pies' into my mouth and damn, it was LOVE at first bite. Minus cream cheese and fillings and all. Sometimes, some things are good enough to be eaten alone!

I had a request from the husband to make it again (always a sign it's good!) and it was him who suggested I make it into muffin form. I of course happily obliged coz getting making these babies small using a ice cream scoop is a bit of a pain.

It was a nice moment roping my daughter in to give her helping hand in baking. She was very excited over her very important task of helping out with mashing the bananas. She tried to steal a few bites of course, oh yes she did! Monkeys should never go near bananas I swear, lol, I kid!

Perfect scoop not required. That's the beauty of baking just for family. haha. And it's all ready to be popped into the oven.

Some 20 minutes later... a beautiful aroma consisting a familiar banana smell was hitting the kitchen and living room which prompted the little one to run to ask if its ready..She always does that whenever there's something in the oven.

Perfect banana muffin which made an awesome quick breakfast! We made this on Saturday night and half of it finished within minutes! Amazing..
Instead of 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup sugar as called by the recipe, I only used 1/2 cup brown sugar in order to make it a little healthier. The husband whacked half of the tray ALL BY HIMSELF and we were down to only 5 muffin (of course Aulia' and I whacked one each too) for weekend breakfast, haha.

Mmmm..B.A.N.A.N.A muffins!

And thats lady and gents, is how we butchered a whoopie pie recipe into becoming our favorite banana muffin for the family. Regardless, thank you, Martha, you've got me anxious baking on Saturdays now:) Highly recommend you try this recipe for the kids and family-they will LOVE it! And you of course!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

When she's in a good mood & decide to pose

Assalamualaikum wbt..

I've said it before and I'll say it again- at 1 year 9 months when kids are at the stage of moving around in lighting speed, sometimes it almost impossible and frustrating to photograph them. There are times I just don't bother taking out my phone camera coz I know it will take ALOT of effort on my part to get a nice shot. But then after a while I take it out anyway coz I love photographing every single minute of her life and feel almost guilty if I don't, lol.

You should see whenever my dad attempts to take photos of Aulia'-we need a pack of cheerleaders around them both so he could get a good shot and even when I take photos of her, it is NEVER easy as I literally have to tell her to hold still coz she gives poses in less than TWO seconds people and by the time she has moved on to another pose or movement, I would have just only clicked on the camera resulting in a very shaky blurry photo.

Either I need to step up on my photography skills by snapping it fast OR that kid needs to slow down. It's never a win win.

BUT on days when my kid is being absolutely co-operative, I call it a good day and what else, take tons of photos of her. So advance apologize for the lack of a proper post, instead here are tons  of photos of Aulia' taken this morning when we went out for breakfast. I know there are probably just six photos of her at the actual restaurant but that's only because she was in a mood for a lil mini-photo-shoot at home.  I found the lazy way out of turning on the flash to capture my lil speedy Gonzales so the photo wouldn't turn out blur or shaky. It may look harsh but that's what I'll have to do for now.

Aulia' wearing Tia Amour by Fashionvalet.com

And that shall conclude this post for today, lol. Hoping there'll be more cooperative days to come. I really don't know how kiddie photographers do it, they must have alot of  patience when doing their job!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Meeting the Gyneacologist

Assalamualaikum wbt..

Okay first of all..I'm NOT pregnant. Don't get me wrong:)

Beginning of this year, I decided to book for gynea visit..*at last!* Because ever since I delivered Aulia', I've never been for a thorough check with the gynea, because I'm scared and I thought it was painful after the last  checkup during my pregnancy. 
I know one can get a yearly checkup with a normal GP, but I thought I should start to find a gynea that both of me and Hafiz are comfortable with, so we can use the same gynea when we decided to have another baby in future. *avid planner*
So I started googling around and speaking to friends who have done the checkup. 

I finally drew up the requirement for my gynea and she must be willing to go for a natural birth. Okay, not fully natural like birth in bath tub lar but of course if last minute cannot for whatever reason, she will still do ceaserean on me. Because I heard alot in  Ampang Hospital, the gynea will 'push' you to opt for a ceaserean so that it is scheduled etc. Plus it cost more and save their time.

After scouring every single possibilities, I decided to make an appointment with Dr.Roseline Moo. She was highly recommended by both a friend as well as my neighbour (and they do not know each other, just happen to speak about their gynea and then their eyes shines when they speak about her!). My friend even had an emergency pre-mature labour, etc, and told me how calm and quick she was at the hospital ready for her. Sigh! I wish I had that experience during my first delivery.  However, both of them gave the advice, get yourself in the doctor's patients list, as there will be a very long queue. Once you are in the list, you can easily  get an appointment should you have any issues/ or pregnant in the future.

So finally my appointment was just two weeks ago on the 11th of May.
I must say, I am very happy with her, and she tick off all my requirements for the perfect gynea.
Hubby accompanied me to the appointment as I also need him to be comfortable with her, seeing that I am looking for a 'lifetime' gynea.

We only went in at 11.30am although the appointment was for 11.00am. I was a bit nervous as I had bad experience with the gynea checkup last time and most of my friend says it's uncomfortable. Indeed it was uncomfortable for me last time due to my shyness with the doctors and nurses who widely straddle my leg. *shy*

My first impression of the gynea was..wow, she dresses nice *haha, serious*
Okay, okay she is very friendly from the start and smiles and also very genuine.
She takes her time talking to us, chatting about family history, asking if I have any question etc.
To be honest, at times I was thinking this at the back of my mind,'Are you sure my appointment is that long?'

Finally it was time for me to lie down and she does the checkup, she also takes time to show me the monitor and points to me my ovary, uterus etc. Hubby seems to see what she is seeing, but I don't. It's just blur pitch black and white and makes no real sense to me *sad*. She also did a breast screening and pap smear. I like the way she explaining to me what she is doing before she starts, so I am prepared for what is about to come. Surprisingly, it wasn't painful or anything *brave face*..

Then I was sent to the pathology lab to get some blood to check if I have rubella antibodies (if not, I will need a jab). All in all, I am glad I waited to get in this gynea's patient list, so that I will be in good hands when we plan to have another baby.

And yes, we are trying to get another baby this time:) Another hard work I tell you.. :) 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Potty Training

Assalamualaikum wbt..

I will be doing some major potty training with Aulia' this weekend! It's a 3 days weekend and I don't have anything serious going on so I can focus on it 100%. She is ready, for sure! She is excited about "big girl panties" too!

Do you have any tips or tricks for making it a smooth transition? I have potties and I have panties, although I may buy more because I don't want to run out of clean undies!Here is our potty of choice! We also have the Sesame Street one that makes noise!

Also Aulia' is a fan of the cartoon panties! Minnie Mouse & Dora are a hit!
We have this potty book sitting right next to the potty. She reads it when she goes!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Here and now

Assalamualaikum wbt...

I live my life on a pendulum. I'm constantly swinging between extremes of either always thinking and dreaming about the future or being naively focused on the present. There's a plus to both sides, but a happy medium would be ideal. When I'm in my future- focused state I'm a dreamer, I'm determined, and I take action. But I'm also more stressed out and I lose sight of just living in the moment. When I'm wholehearted content in the present and embracing the here and now, I'm happy. But, I'm just letting life live and I tend to get lazy. My motivation has died down.

Right now I am stuck in my "I'm happy now" mode. I feel great! I'm living day to day, soaking up life's little moments. I'm honestly happy with all aspects of my life. I'm just floating along in my "whatever happens, happens" mentality. Life is good.

But what about my daughter's 2nd birthday quickly approaching? Or the fact that we have yet to write a will? And what about the debt that needs to paid down? Or where we are going to vacation this September when I has a week off work? What will my life look like 10 years from now?
Like I said, I'm struggling to find the happy medium between caring about the future and soaking up the present. I'm struggling with a lack of motivation. I love having a carefree mentality, but where will it get me in terms of my to-do-list, in term of my goals? I need a reminder please..really bad.

Ever wish your husband could read your mind? I always do.

Last night when we finish performing our Jemaah prayers, my husband ask me to sit down with him..He said he wanted to have a tazkirah (some sort of lecture) on our ibadah (worship) and to discuss on our daily routine/work/responsibility..

There you go my reminder and motivator..Alhamdulillah..he can actually read my mind.
You see, in many Muslim cultures, men are raised to be stoic and tight-lipped. Muslim husbands are very often (not always) reluctant to talk about certain things with their wives. Part of the problem is also that sometimes it is hard to actually formulate our thoughts into the right words.
We've tried our best to communicate each day and here we are sitting together after performing our Isya' prayers and discussing on our relationship as husband and wife, our duty as a Muslim and our responsibility towards our children and parents.

Today I'm choosing to just be happy in this current moment. And for now that is good enough.
Now, go and get married peeps. and love your spouse!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

When I became a mom..

Assalamualaikum wbt..

On the daily I get slapped in the face with the epiphany that I'm a mom..woah! It feels so surreal to me at times. I mean, I still fell like a kid trying to figure this world out-not perfectly put together, know-it-all mom, I expected myself to be.

But being a mom isn't about the success you achieve in life. And it's not about having the laundry put away and making home-cooked meals. And it sure as hell isn't about having it all figured out.

It's about love. Period.

When I became a mom, I learn the true meaning of love. Being a mom opens up a chamber of my heart that I didn't know existed. It puts my world in perspective and teaches me the true meaning of life. Family. Hope. Love.

Some aspects of my life before becoming a mother were better. Easier. But I don't think I really lived until I was a mom. Because now I'm not just living for me-I'm living for them. I don't just have the weight of one life on my shoulders. I have the weight of more. And I feel stronger than ever. Empowered. I'm doing exactly what I'm meant to be doing. Maybe every day isn't great and maybe I still have a ton to learn, but that may just be the best thing about being a mom. It provides you with the greatest opportunity for growth and development and learning imaginable. Not to mention the rewards. The simple rewards- the smile, the laughter, the "I love you's"-they far outweigh any rough mom moment. 

I don't have much figured out. I change my mind daily on my hopes and my dreams. Even just deciding what to make for dinner throws me for a loop. But the defining in my life- the one thing I am certain of and exceptionally proud of it this:

I'm a super hero, super mak- I'm a mom.
And I wouldn't trade it for ANYTHING.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Gifts for my beautiful mom

Assalamualaikum wbt..

Mothers Day is one of my favorite days of the year! As a daughter I love the chance to show my own mom how much I appreciate her. As a mom myself, mothers day reminds me of the birth of my own baby girl. Whether you are a mom, daughter, or both, we LOVE getting gifts that express just how special we are to everyone in the family. I remember always wanting to either give something or do something special for my mom on mother's day and it didn't matter what it was, she was always so thankful. She has 4 children and we all try to honor her in some way on this very special day of the year. I know, being a mom can often be hard, stressful, tiring and scary. At the same time, it's also the most rewarding job out there, worth every moment I can assure you. No doubt.

I've been thinking so hard what would be my mom's favorite since she's been staying mostly at home after her surgery earlier this year. She must be bored staying at home, watching her faves series on the television, house chores, cooking..yes, my mom still cook while she's at home..its been her all time favorite-feeding her family with her home cooked meal. The only time she can release her stiffness with all the house chore is when she's in her bath tub soaking herself with the warm water. It must be heaven for her since she's been  decorating her own bathroom with her favorite color (green), beadboard wallpaper, used the stylish baskets, jars and cups as functional decor accents. She even had a small fish vivarium jar thingy in her bathroom. So her bathroom more or less had become like a mini garden with the small pot of curry leaves that spread the good smells of it. I always loves my mom bathroom and her hot shower even more!

The Body Shop had been my all time favorite so I'm thinking to indulge my mom with a personalize gift from the new spring summer gift collection.

I choosed the Olive oil bath set which consist of Olive shower gel, Olive body scrub, Olive soap, Bath Pom Pom Green and Beautifying Oil Moringa. All these aroma and smells are sensory overload and I bet my mom love it!

To my mom:

You have lived your life for love of friends & family,
Neither asking or nor wanting a return,
Your day became a sunlit homily,
With other's joy your joy and main concern.
When 4 of us were ill, you also became sick,
When we were cut, you too, began to bleed.
Of our oil lamp you was the wick,
Drawing your bright flame for our need.
Some say that such behavior out of date,
That self-fulfillment is the way to grace.
But mom, without much voice, then chose your fate,
Finding greater truth in an embrace.
You lives on in the sparkle in our eyes,
Laughing, quiet, gentle, loving, wise.
I shall pray that Allah swt grant you the highest Jannah. Amin!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Women Empowerment Day

Assalamualaikum wbt..

My company's Public Relation (PR) and Marketing department organized an event called Women Empowerment Day. So women from all departments (Engineering, Procurement, Finance, HR,  Legal and Project Development Department) gathered today in the conference room to celebrate women, raise awareness of women's health and beauty and to make positive steps towards greater empowerment of women.

There was about 50 of us during that day and two speakers from M.A.K.N.A (National Cancer Council Malaysia) and BidanKota was invited to give a talk on health and beauty.

It serves as an important reminder to us in the company who work really hard to look after on our own health and inner beauty. The issue on cancer are myriad. But today the speaker from M.A.K.N.A was focusing on the breast cancer issues and understanding breast cancer. The representative from M.A.K.N.A was explaining on the pros and cons of the standard breast cancer screening tests, including mammography and clinical breast exam, as well as MRI. She explained on what happens if a test shows something abnormal. In rare cases, breast cancer can occur in men. Well, do you know about this? We just get to know it today.

The other interesting part of today's event was when the founder of BidanKota, Puan Safi Abd Rahman,  gave her speech on the traditional medication and massage especially for post-natal treatment. There was also a live demonstration on basic light make up for office, traditional tea making using ginger, lemongrass, and mas cotek leaf!

What I learned today:
Make your own lemongrass tea

2 lemongrass stalks
Honey or sugar to sweeten (optional)
Boiling water
I tea bag
Juice from ½ lime

1. Cut off the root end of the lemongrass stalk and remove any of the dry outer leaves. Gently bruise the base of the stalk with a rolling pin.
2. Tie the lemongrass in a knot ad place on a cup and sweeteners if using.
3. Pour in the boiling water. Add a tea bag and remove as soon as the water is golden brown.
4. Add lime juice to taste and serve with a lemongrass stirrer.

Just so you know, drinking a cup of lemongrass tea after a large meal will take away that full feeling and will aid in digesting the food just consumed along with helping to remove unhealthy food additives, chemicals and excess fats. It also aids in the relief of constipation, keeping the bowels working properly and removing toxins to keep our body healthy and energetic.  Interesting fact isn't it?

Adding more fun to this event, Puan Safi held a guess and win contest and we had a photo session before the event ends.

Again this month, the PR and Marketing Department will organize an event involving the employees and Pertubuhan Rumah Amal Cahaya Tengku Ampuan Rahimah (RACTAR). This is the first charity event organized by our company.There will be treasure hunt activity with 40 kids from RACTAR at Lake Garden Kuala Lumpur on 26 May 2013..

Well done PR and Marketing. We are looking forward for more events like this:)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

When we first met

Assalamualaikum wbt...

May is a month that always feels jam packed with events.. be they holidays or birthdays or memories.
This week, especially, is choc full of momentous occurrences. Ones that have changed my life!

14. 5. 2007

This is the date when we first met.
We was introduced to each other and became good friend. Best friend
Five years later, he became my husband. Today, I called him old man. Yes, he is old. I'm right behind him. But if you ask me, he gets better with age..he is so ambitious and intelligent, so sweet and thoughtful, so supportive and encouraging.. and so blasted good looking!! Aulia' and I just adore him, and love to spoil him with kisses as much as he loves to spoil his girls!

Six years and counting...

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Cranky baby girl

Assalamualaikum wbt..

Quick, someone say my name 3 times fast and maybe the sleep issues we've been having for the past few days will magically disappear.  Wait, that's not how it works?! Crap. 

See, I knew I shouldn't have said anything about sleep, because all of a sudden, Aulia' has started waking up at the butt crack of dawn in a bad mood. Normally, during the week when I get ready for work and to get her at 6.45 am and she's usually still laying down (though not always asleep). On the weekends, she's been known to sleep (or stay quiet in her bed) until as late as 8.30!

Not lately though. Since Saturday, the latest she's slept is 5am. On Monday she was crying at 4am so I tried to rock her back to sleep. She wasn't having any of that and restless, so hubby decided to put her in the cradle.

No such luck. He said she maybe dozed off and on for about 30 minutes, but was wide awake and restless the whole time. Same thing in the morning, starting at 5am. I'm thinking it must be a growth spurt, but of course I worry that she's having some sort of reaction to the whole milk we've started gradually adding to her breast milk (hopefully not, but it's just in my nature to worry about things like this).

Whatever it is, I'm ready for this phase to be over! Aside from me being tired, she's more tired and cranky, which is making her transition to the toddler room at daycare this week a bit rocky so far, and her evenings full of tears. I really do like to think of Aulia as a generally happy baby, but lately that image is becoming a little tarnished...

I want my sweet, smiley, good sleeper back..pretty please?

MomDad Surprise Birthday Party

Assalamualaikum wbt..

This month is very special since we celebrate Labor day on May 1st, Mom's B'day on May 2nd, Mother's Day on May 12th, Teacher's Day on May 16th and Dad's B'day on May 21st.  It was a pretty crazy time for my family so it kind of got overlooked. Mom turned 53 while dad turned 66 this year so I decided to kill two birds with one stone and throw them a joint surprise birthday party.

At first we decided to celebrate by going out to eat at one restaurant where a chef cooks and does tricks in front of us. But later, my baby sisters requested that they want a home cooked meal so that all of us feel homey and comfortable over dinner. I had been planning a surprise party for them since last month.

As much as I wanted to do a surprise dinner party, it was just going to be too much pull off with Aulia' and the house chores. I do have limits. I kept it simple by just doing few main dish, cake and drinks.

My family came over dinner and I had everything set up for mom and dad surprise party with simple decors, pink-black theme utensils, love balloons and with the girls dressed up in pink.

Aulia' was wearing Shoulder Embellished Top-Hot Pink from BBluvsme

Happy 53th and 66th birthday mom and dad. We know that both of you deserved a great celebration from your kids and I am so happy with the way it turned out. It was a lot of work but it worth it.

May Allah swt grant both of you Jannah and our pray will always be with you. I hope you know how much you are loved!

And to you guys, if you plan to throw a birthday party you can contact marvel-factory for more info:)
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