Sunday 20 December 2009

Mum's birthday & Christmas Gathering

Mum's 65th birthday is on 21st December, the next day is always a "tung" celebration marking the start of winter in the Chinese lunar calendar, some said this day is "bigger" than Chinese New Year.

As the Christmas is just round the corner, I decided to celebrate the ocassions earlier merging mum's birthday and Christmas together on 19th December at my house, the pot luck style.

I baked two cakes, one butter orange cake requested by mum and a small fruit cake, Christmas is not so complete without a fruit cake, so I finally decided to bake a tiny fruit cake yesterday, it was decorated by Crystal and Pearl.

I prepared my speciality for the dinner, that's the spaghetti bolognese, cream of mushroom chicken puff and fried some ready packed chicken rolls. We moved around the furniture a bit to make more space for the evening too, that's kept us busy for the whole day. It was a very memorable and meaningful gathering.

My parents and five of us siblings
I should have taken a photo of the cake :C
A cute little Christmas cake, it's a bit sweet, gonna reduce on the sugar for my next baking.
Pizza from Pizza Hut brought in by Sis
Home made potato and ham salad by SIL, Shirly, Clet like it, I will need to get the recipe from her.
spaghetti bolognese by me
Older generation like my parents always prefer to have rice. Alfred took over the wok cooking this fried rice under the supervision of his wife, Catherine who is due to gave birth to a son end of this month. He is picking up cooking very well.
A big plate of fried meehoon by Alfred too, prove of great improvement in his cooking.
Egg and ham sandwiches ordered from the shop
fried chicken roll
Cream of mushroom chicken puff and tuna puff, my favourite baking.
Pause from eating to take a photo. Clet is busy fixing the video cam at the background.
sisters sharing a small table, Pearl and Anneliese were playing more than eating, they left their food almost untouched.

Sunday 13 December 2009

Christmas Decoration is up

While I was busy baking cookies this afternoon, I asked Pearl to help me to take some of our Christmas decorations that Clet has put up inside the house. Most of the decorations are old ones. I can feel that this year's celebration is very quiet, the mechandise and decorations put up by the shopping complexes are much lesser than previous years, recession has really set in...:(

Saturday 12 December 2009

Do you like Bambangan pickles?

I love Bambangan pickles, but not for Clet and my 2 daughters. They would close their nose as soon as I open the container of bambangan pickles. This was what happened this afternoon when I mixed some of it with my plain noodles. One closed the nose and the other shouted, "mummy, please close the container rigth now, I hate the smell of it". "alright, alright!" I said.

Bambangan belongs the wild mango family, it is a famous traditional appetizer to the Kadazan and Dusun tribes but it has gained popularity among other communities as well. The fruit can be eaten when it's ripen but I prefer it to be made into pickles. Bambangan pickles last for several if it well stored. I normally refrigerate it.

Friday 11 December 2009

My birthday

It's time to update on my birthday, gosh.. I'm already 41. First of all, I would like to count my blessings for which God has given me and my family, and also pray and hope that God will hear my prayers and grant us our wishes. Thank you Lord.

My birthday breakfast at Bandaran Berjaya.

A mango birthday cake, especially ordered by SIL, thank you.
Discovering what birthday present my girls have picked for me
A new oven, a present from Clet, thank you. The bottom heating element of my old junk oven has stopped working just a few days before my birthday, just in time to start a new one for Christmas as well.
We dropped by Wong's house to cut the cake after dinner. You may want to find out what we had for my birthday dinner here.

Wednesday 9 December 2009

The best birthday present

I have not been participating Tuesday Toot for quite a while , and I am back this week cos I have to give my precious little daughter, Crystal, a "Toot" for her wonderful birthday card that she had personally designed for me on my birthday last Wednesday, 2nd December.

She insisted to draw me a birthday card just an hour before the birthday dinner. She has also insisted her Daddy to buy me a birthday present on the very afternoon, popping in and out of the boutiques in the shopping complex, and finally, she decided on a floral long skirt for me. She was so tired that she felt asleep in the car on the way to fetch me off from work.

The messages in the card is simply pure and sweet though with some spelling mistakes which I do not mind at all. I love her thoughtfulness and her creativity. I read the card again and again, and always put a smile on my face each time I read it. This has become the wall paper for my computer at work. It takes the work pressure off me by looking at it. :D

Thank you, my precious Crystal, you have given mummy the best birthday present ever, love you lots!!

Especially designed by Crystal

Tuesday 1 December 2009

Book : Secrets of Asia's Most Successful Internet Gurus

I found a very good and informative book on Internet Marketing written by Pearlin Siow entitled, "SECRETS of Asia's Most Successful INTERNET GURUS" at Popular Book store. The selling price for this book is RM45.60 with a 20% off.

It was so interesting that I managed to finish reading the whole book in a night, yes, in just a matter of few hours. For those who are into Internet Marketing will definitely benefit from this book, big time; it is very well written and easy to understand. It has enhanced my knowledge to the wide range of Internet Marketing out there though a lot of work still needed to be done in order to get the know hows on areas that interest me most.

The content of the book is written in an interview contexts. The content covers :

1. List Building - Jaz Lai
2. blogging - Alvin Phang
3. Pay-Per-clicj (PPC) Advertising - Eugene Ang
4. Affiliate Marketing - Ewen Chia
5. Ebay - Benjamin Marc Wee
6. Niche Marketing - Patric Chan
7. Membership Website - Ian Del Carmen
8. Search Engine Marketing - Fabian Lim
9. Content Marketing -Patrick Grove
10. Copywriting - Ng Khai Siung

You will find each Gurus revealed their success methods in this book and the best thing is that it provides the websites for each Gurus at the end of each topic which allows us to explore further on what they have to offer.

Personally, I reckon this is a very good read for a newbie like me and recommend to all.

Monday 30 November 2009

Christmas Gifts Ideas

Christmas is fast approaching, as we celebrate the birth of Christ, it's also time for giving and count our blessing on this special occasion. Have you decided on the Christmas gifts that you would like to give to your loved ones?

To avoid the traffic jam, crowded shopping complexes and long queues at the paying counters, it would be a good idea to start your shopping spree on line, there are many choices and brands for you to choose from, the prices are reasonable too..

Nice clothing, shoes, designer handbags are among some of the gift ideas that pop up in my mind. For those who like golfing, a pair of fashionable golf shoes is what they are waiting for; a pair of sneakers or running shoes would be suitable for whom like to work out and enjoy outdoor activities. Why not buy yourself a pair of beautiful shoes for the celebration too..? I would love to.

Sunday 29 November 2009

Movie : Disney's A Christmas Carol

From Wikipedia

We brought our girls to watch The movie, A Christmas Carol (2009) on Friday night, they totally did not enjoy the movie. Right from the beginning, the face of the bitter and miserly old Mr Scrooge is not pleasant to them, there came the Ghost of the Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come scared the heal out of the kids. Just a few minutes after the movie has started, Pearl asked to go home. Crystal covered her face under her daddy's arm and slept almost throughout the movie just to let the time past. Pearl only watched those pleasant scenes when I told her no more scary ghosts, other times she covered her ears and used the jacket to cover her face most of the time.

The moral of the story for the movie is good, however, the kids would prefer not to watch it due to the scary ghosts scenes. When I asked Crystal what does she think of the movie, her replied was, " Not nice, made my mind full of *momok* (ghosts) now". Luckily she was able to sleep because she woke up early to attend her introductory class in the morning, she was very tired and sleepy that night.

Picture from Wikipedia

Crystal & Pearl were fascinated with the Barbie in a Christmas Carol which was released on 4th November in 2008. We thought they will be delighted to watch the newly released Christmas Carol, instead, it's was a very disappointing movie outing.

The stories of these two movies are similar. Barbie in a Christmas Carol is definitely merrier in comparison. The Christmas Ghosts characters are not that scary thus acceptable by the kids.

Friday 27 November 2009

Home baked pizza

Nice to have public holiday! Got the chance to bake something in the oven. I bought a 10" pizza pan the other day, and eager to try baking a pizza. It's a home baked pizza cos I used the pre-packed pizza flour for the dough by just adding on the toppings so it's not a home made pizza.
my new 10" pizza pan
Our girls have longed been asking me to make a pizza after seeing one of the Barney VCD last year. After pressing the dough on the pan and spreading a layer of thousand island dressing, I let them put the toppings on the dough however they want it. They enjoyed the task very much.

An unbaked pizza fully packed with chicken sausages, crab stick, mixed vegetable and shredded cheddar cheese. It is too thick than I was worried whether the dough can be cooked probably or not, I took the chances by putting it into the oven anyway, just need a bit longer baking time.

The baked pizza after 30 minutes. 10 minutes longer than the instructed baking time.
Crystal kept saying it's very delicious, she finished the whole portion of her share (cos she is very hungry at tea break, no lunch earlier on for the day).

Like usual Pearl eat some and play at the same time, she only ate the toppings but not the pizza bread.

The pizza bread is not as nice as expected. Probably I should make my own dough from scratch next time (only if I have got the time :C)

Thursday 26 November 2009

Sarawak local produce

It has been a long drive from Kota Kinabalu, Sabah to Kuching, Sarawak. After the first trip about a month ago, Clet told me that he would not want to travel to Kuching by road again. However, due to work commitment, Clet and his nephew Mitchell drove to Kuching last week, it took them 9 days for a return trip this time. Haha...the journey to Kuching by road does not take that long, don't be misled by the numbers. They took a few overnight stops along the way to and back from Kuching. They have to go through Brunei, Miri, Bintulu and other towns before reaching their destination. The good thing about driving instead of flying is that they are able to visit their business counter parts along the way; Mobility is the main reason why they decided to drive despite of the long journey.

Clet bought back many types of Sarawak local produce, all are dried food, very hard and crunchy snacks. There are two types that I have not seen and tried before, that's the vegetarian goose meat and bird's nest with rock sugar sweets. The goose meat is very hard and dry while the bird's nest sweet is overly sweet.

(Bottom left to right) Bird's nests with rock sugar sweet, biscuit telinga, ring biscuit, assorted crispy rice biscuit, Peng Piang, (Top right to left) vegetarian goose meat, keropok pisang

Monday 23 November 2009

1st day of school holiday

I am taking leave from work on the 1st to 3rd day of school holiday so I do not have to send them to holiday school, knowing that it would be a big challenge sending Pearl to holiday school without Crystal being there. I prefer to just being at home, it doesn't matter letting them driving me nuts than dragging myself to work.

Besides busy with the house chaos, I managed to get down to experience some baking over the weekend. Inspired by Shireen's blog on making home baked bread, I tried my hands on making my own bread and buns, it was pretty successful. I put red bean paste as filling for my buns which I bought meant for making moon cake but then moon cake project was a disaster..hahaha..

I also baked some durian butter cake as requested by my mum. It came out smelling and taste really nice, I feel like having the whole loaf of it but then it is too fattening to indulge myself, so i better give some away to my brothers, they do not mind tasting whatever I try to bake. They always give me honest comments.

The Camera is with Clet at Kuching that I used my handphone to snaps some photos of the buns I baked, unfortunately, my handphone went spoilt while I was trying to download a software onto my computer so that I can upload the photos. Now my handphone is totally not functioning probably due to virus attack buy the software I uploaded.

Sunday 22 November 2009

Local Female Magazines

I love reading magazines. One of my favourite is Her World Magazine. I bought the November 2009 issue featuring Datuk Yasmin Yussuf on the front cover. It comes with free sample of Shiseido Zen Eau de Parfum 1ml and a packet of May White Radiance Shower Cream. The Shiseido perfum is pretty nice, I have got 2 pieces of the same, one of it came free from a copy of the Female magazine that I bought at the same time.

The copy of the 480 pages thick Female magazine was a big disappointment, most of the pages are advertisements nothing much of interesting write up. It is very much different from what it used to be.

What is your favourite magazines?

Saturday 21 November 2009

Stay at home Saturday

Many of you might have taken the opportunities to go holiday, a long distance drive to outstation or even hang out at the shopping malls with the children to mark the beginning of the long year end school holidays starting today till next year, 4th January.

But for me, I am longing to stay in the coziness of our little messy home with my 2 little princesses while Clet is outstation in Sarawak for the launching of eXfuze. Though our girls love going out so much they do like being at home at times. First thing in the morning, Pearl told me that she doesn't want to go to school just like to stay at home. Crystal has no objection.

Like usual they will find ideas in keeping themselves occupy, one of which was to find ice from the fridge to rub on the barbie mermaid's hair and body to discover the change of colours on them, so much of watching mermaid on Youtube that they wanted to bathe the barbie mermaid in water, I gave them a small basin and later Crystal complained it's too small for their barbie mermaids to swim, they have got 3 mermaids altogether, she needed the baby bath tub . They got themselves all wet, and finished the game off with bathe and shower with the barbie dolls .

Unable to post any photos here because I am having difficulties in getting my photos uploaded from my handphone. Clet has brought the camera along with him to outstation all the time that I find myself lacking in blogging without photos.

Sunday 15 November 2009

Products of Philippines

Chicharron (dried pork skin), popcorns, dried mangoes (I can finished the whole pack of dried mangoes, been eating too much that I felt a bit dizzy the next day, probably too high sugar content, :D)
Chocolate brownies
Butter macaroons, simply cococnut

From a business trip to Clark, Philippines, Clet brought back some local produce and also some clothing for us, I particularly like the children dresses from the Philippines, the prices are reasonable and I have no complain on the qualities and designs. Will ask him to buy some shoes during his next trip there.

At cousin's son wedding dinner

8 course meal is the basic for a wedding dinner. The price of each table is very much depends on the type of food that are included in the dishes. Dishes with shark fins, abalone, prawn will definitely more expensive.

At my cousin's son wedding, it is the first time that I have and tasted abalone in fried rice. My cousin, Mr & Mrs Yong Chee Loong's youngest son wedding was on 12 November 2009. Here's the snapshots of us at the wedding dinner and the delicious 8 course meal.

Mum and aunties meet. chit chatting before the dinner.
Sister and son, Jasper
Me and my only sister
Crystal, Pearl and Daddy
Happy with the balloon in hand

Tuesday 10 November 2009

PayPal withdrawal available for Malaysians

Solution Graphics
I am not just off from blogging for many weeks due to heavy workloads, both at work and at home , I am also haven't got the chance to check on my PayPal account for a while. Today, I logged on to my PayPal account with the intention to find out how to withdraw some funds to my credit card which I have accumulated since I started blogging.

I am pleased to find out the we, in Malaysia are allowed to withdraw funds to the local Malaysian banks now, this is what many of us have been waiting for.

There will be no charges if withdrawal is more than RM400.00, otherwise, we will be charged RM3.00 for the transaction. It will only take 2-3 working days to receive the funds into our bank account. Withdrawal to a credit card will take 5-7 days, with a charge of RM20.00.

Amazing truth of Fruits and vegetable

I am a vegetable lover but not a vegan. Times and times again, I read about the health benefits of certain fruits and vegetable but never noticed some of the vegetable I usually eat actually resemble our body organs and have direct benefits to that organ too. Do you know that?

It was brought to my attention when I received an email enclosing a slide entitled "God's Pharmacy" from my colleague today. It is amazingly true, that,

1. Carrots, when it is cut into halve, the round middle part resembles the eye, thus eating carrot enhances blood flow to and functions of our eyes.

2. Tomato, has four chambers is very similar to the heart which has four chambers too. Tomatoes loaded with lycopine, a form of carotene, good for the heart and blood.

3. Grapes, a cluster of grapes hanging on the tree resemble the human heart thus also profound heart and blood vitalising food.

4. Walnut, look like the brain. Consuming walnuts help develop more than 3 dozens neuron, the transmitter for brain functions.

5. Kidney bean, look exactly like kidney, it actually heals and helps maintain the kidney functions.

6. Celery, its stems look like bones. it contains sodium which is what our bones need. Eat celery to replenish our bones strength and skeletal needs.

7. Avocados, eggplants, pears, provides the health and functions of the womb, cervix of female. It says that by taking one avocado a day helps balances the hormone, prevents cervical cancer. Do you know that it takes 9 months to grow an avocado?

8. Fig, the fruit is full of seeds, hang in 2 on the tree. It has the function of increase the mobility of male sperms and increase the sperms numbers.

9. Sweet potatoes, looks like pancreas, thus has the function of balancing the glycemic index of diabetes.

10. Olives, assist the health and function of ovaries.

11. Oranges, grape fruits like the mammary glands of female, assist the health of the breast and the movement of lymph in and out of the breast.