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Friday, July 31, 2015

Going The Throes Of Motherhood

Lately I have been arguing a lot with the big girl.   She has exactly a month to go before the big day -- the dreaded UPSR exam. The nearer the day is towards the exam, the more relaxed she gets.  I don't see an ounce of panic or worry in her. She's as cool as a cucumber, come what may!

She has to stay back in school for compulsory tuition and gets home at about 4 - 4:30pm since February this year. After a fruit and snack break, she takes her shower.  She used to take a nap after her shower but these days, I don't know what's with her. She would walk straight to the living room and plonks herself on the couch to watch DVD or Astro programs for at least 2 hours, thus skipping her must-have siesta.  This girl MUST take her 2-hour nap each day, just like a baby, failing which she will be crabby and bolshy towards the evening.  Sometimes, she will watch You Tube or sends messages to her friends on Facebook using the iPod.  Now this Apple gadget is the biggest mistake hubs has made when he bought it for her a year ago for getting good grades.  I have tried hiding the iPod but this girl boldly takes it back from me. No matter where I hide it in my room, she can still locate it!

The last straw was about 3 days ago when I found her playing with the iPod on her bed. She should be taking her baby nap but she was nonchalantly playing with the iPod. She did not give two hoots about me catching her.  All hell broke loose and I lost my cool.  My sensitive daughter broke down. We had a sizzling argument.  Long story short, I snatched the iPod back from her and hid it again. I did not talk to her until the next day when she begged me to have the iPod back, like an addict, high on drugs!  I was furious and my blood was boiling, so ready to spew out acidic words on her again. After another wrangle of words and another meltdown by my sensitive girl, I gave her an option -- she can only have the iPod back for HALF AN HOUR each day on condition that she finishes all her homework (school and tuition) and writes a Karangan (Malay essay) to show me. She did not accept the condition and protested. I stuck to my guns and told her that she could take it or leave it.  After sleeping over it, she accepted the 'offer'.

Some kids are very disciplined when it comes to revising for exams. My kids are not so, mainly because my other half is very lenient. So they know they  have the leeway.  Sometimes I wonder if my tiger mothering ways are beneficial or  detrimental to my girls. I have read stories of how some kids take their own lives as a result of parental pressure and pressure in school.  Just a few days ago, I read that a girl in Singapore took her own life when she could not score straight As in her O Levels exam. She was afraid to disappoint her mother who wanted her to be a medical doctor.   A few months later, the girl's mother took her own life. That story broke my heart. This should never ever happen to any family.

Ever since the big girl and I reached an 'agreement' on the usage of her iPod, she is a much happier girl and so am I. Today she came home and told me that she is the top in class again in her July exam.  I told her that all her hard work has paid off. I told her that all our arguments and tears and my forcing her to study diligently  have reaped bountifully.  The both of us are very happy today.

So my conclusion is that for this big girl, I have to drop my initial plan of keeping the iPod out of her sight for  a whole month until her UPSR exam is over.  This does not work for her.  It depresses her and me a lot.  Parenting kids is never easy. But the rewards are immeasurable.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Our Tuesday - 28 July 2015

Breakkie with hubs and mil at a newly opened cafe at our neighborhood yesterday while the girls were at school...

Omelette with cheese, mushrooms and tomatoes.

Omelette with house-made baked beans, bacon and salad for the hubs.

Not really used to having such a heavy breakfast, I was so stuffed that I had to skip lunch.  And I made smoothie (pineapple + orange + apple + chia seeds + coconut water) for everyone :)

Monday, July 27, 2015

Weekend Chow With My Family (Old Klang Road Bah Kut Teh and Oiso Korean Traditional Cuisine & Cafe)

On Saturday night... Bah Kut Teh at Old Klang Road.

We were all so famished (had a late dinner) that I had forgotten to take a mental note of the name of the shop or snap a picture of the shop. We dashed right inside hurriedly to 'chop' a table as there was a large crowd outside the shop waiting to tuck into a piping hot bowl of mean porcine herbal soup.

The bah kut teh was really good -- broth was tasty and soothing and the meat oh so tender and juicy.   Hubs ordered 6 bowls of ribs, several bowls of lean and partial lean cuts, piggy intestines (no no for me!), puffed tofu, Enoki mushroom as well as a claypot spicy pork.  Everything was wiped clean.

However, the tables, chairs and loo were dirty! I was already nauseated when I saw the sticky peeling plastic chairs with black stains. All of us used wet wipes to wipe down our chairs and table. Well, like they say, if you want good Malaysian street food, you just have to bear with the not-so-hygienic conditions :)

Bah Kut Teh bill came up to RM151 for 6 people (3 adults 3 kids)

On Sunday, we had lunch at Oiso Korean Traditional Cuisine Cafe at Faber Tower, Taman Desa.
It was our first time at Oiso's new outlet at Taman Desa. There are about 5 outlets around the Klang Valley.

Food was good. The girls who are fans of Korean Kimchi and everything spicy, wolfed down all the spicy dishes.  Oiso serves home-style Korean food cooked to the family recipes of the owner.

Unlike the more common Korean barbecue, little cooking is done at the table except for the stirring of the delicious bibimbap (RM17.90) - rice in a red-hot stone bowl together with vegetables, egg, beef, seaweed and red pepper paste (aka gochujang).  Oiso's bibimbap was so delish that for a no-rice no-carb person like me, I could not resisit chowing down a bowl of  yummy bibimbap.

The fried kimchi with saba fish (RM20.90) came with a chunk of fried mackerel, then simmered in a hot stew with kimchi in it. The fish soaked up all the flavours of the vegetables and hot bean paste of the stew, which made it very delish.

Bulgogi beef (RM21.90) -- paper thin beef slices pan-fried with onions was top notch in taste. The girls wolfed down this dish in a jiffy and when hubs was done serving the girls noodles, there were only a few strips left for him :D  He wanted to order another portion but we stopped him coz more dishes were on the way!

Seafood ramen with spicy soup (RM14.90) -- the girls' comfort food and something that we hardly cook at home. At home, instant noodles are eaten twice or thrice a year maybe?  There was also a kimchi ramen @ RM12.90 (very spicy but very flavorful). That came last and I had forgotten to snap a picture of it.

Pan-fried BBQ chicken with foo pei (tofu cake) @ RM22.90. It's sweet and suitable for kids. Another yummy dish!

Steamed egg in hot pot (RM10.90) for the girls...

When the Pajeon @ RM10.90 (Korean pancake) arrived, we were already too stuffed to eat it. So we had it taken away for dinner.

Along with 5 organic barley tea @ RM1.90 each, total bill came up to RM151.25 including tax (same amount as the bah kut teh that we had the night before!).  There was a 10% new opening discount, off our bill.

The menu has a good and broad selection of dishes and sets and  the pricing is very wallet-friendly. Before we left Oiso, we were already talking about going there again very soon! Yes we better patronize Oiso @ Taman Desa again soon before the 10% discount ends. This time, I'll definitely try their kimchi pancake, kimchi fried rice and other spicy stew dishes.

Oiso Korean Traditional Cuisine And Cafe
Ground Floor, Podium Block, Faber Tower
Taman Desa
58100 Kuala Lumpur
016-315 1349

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Carb-Free Chicken & Char Siew 'Rice'

While Cass is going to have chicken and char siew rice for lunch today, my lunch is a skinny carb-free chicken and char siew 'rice'!    The rice is replaced with sprouted mung beans (the mung beans look similar to rice) which tastes better than rice and way healthier too!

Carbohydrate-free chicken and char siew 'rice' for health freaks and weight watchers, composed of sprouted mung beans, sprouted alfalfa and sprouted snow peas, with a drizzle of chicken rice chilli sauce and ginger sauce.  High in protein and fiber and packed with nutrients from the raw sprouts.  I used lean chicken breast and lean char siew.  Yums! :)

What To Expect From In Home Care

When you begin to make decisions about the long term care of your elderly family members, one of the options to consider is home health care. There are numerous advantages, and there are some expectations that you should be prepared to discuss with the provider before someone enters the home.

Home care is often less expensive than someone going to an assisted living facility or a nursing home. The person can remain at home, in his surroundings, so that he feels comfortable. The only thing that will be different is that someone will enter the home to provide basic care and help if there is a medical necessity. You can hire someone to come every day or once a week. The flexibility of when someone can provide care is often up to the family unless the care is ordered by a doctor.

Most home care workers are nursing assistants or have some kind of medical training. This is beneficial if your loved one needs help with walking, bathing, eating or other daily activities. The worker can assist with making sure the person eats and takes any prescriptions as needed. Some workers will help with preparing meals for the week so that the person doesn't have to cook. Cleaning the home is also one of the things that a worker can help with. These tasks can take some of thee stress for the family in providing care.

Before hiring a home care worker, you need to sit down and make a list of the expectations from the worker and what the worker expects of the family. In order for home health to be successful, both parties have to put forth the effort. If there is any sign that in home care is not the best solution, then other options can be put into place.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Izumio To Fight off 'Heatiness'

The past 2 weeks have been very eventful for the girls and me.

First up was the arrival of my SILs and their kids from all over the world to have a mega reunion in KL.  There was so much fun for the kids and so many parties at home!

Next was the girls' mid-year exam. It was hard for the kids to concentrate studying with so much fun around them. Nevertheless, they made it!  So long as I don't place too high an expectation on them, they are happy and so am I.  I can loosen up my expectation once in a while.  Mega reunions like this one do not happen every year and I am glad that my kids had a great time bonding with their cousins and aunts.

The past 2 weeks has also been a very, very sinful 2 weeks for everyone.  We  indulged in different guilty pleasures from Musang King durian to Nyonya kuih, curry, fried kway teow, yau char kwai (Malaysia's version of fried Churro), Indian Rojak, bakuteh, pizzas (for the kids) and snacks almost everyday.

I was really worried that with so much heaty stuff and lack of sleep, the kids and I would succumb to throat infection and inflamed tonsils.  But we didn't, thanks to Izumio and Super Lutein. On days when we helped ourselves to excessive heaty food, we drank a little more Izumio.  One morning some time last week, I woke up to a throat that was on the verge of getting sore and inflamed. I went to the bathroom and spat up a glob of yellowish mucous.  I thought that I wasn't going to be spared by the strep throat virus. I drank an extra packet of Izumio and popped 2 extra caps of Super Lutein.  The next day, I was feeling fine and dandy again!

I am so glad that my kids and I can now indulge in heaty food without getting a throat infection anymore.  Though Izumio and Super Lutein are very expensive, they are worth every single sen.  The money I save on visits to the hospital and on expensive supplements are now invested on the products. It is one of the wisest choices I have made. If you are interested to get a box or two of Izumio or Super Lutein to try, you can buzz me at my email at shireenyong@gmail.com.

For more reading on Izumio and Super Lutein, please click on the following links:

 Dangers of Eczema Steroid Creams

Super Lutein and Izumio Hydrogen Water For Glaucoma

Effects of Hydrogen Rich Water On Metabolic Syndrome (Diabetes and Obesity) - from US National Library of Medicine

Friday, July 17, 2015

Project Friday

The girls woke up at 5am today to follow their daddy to the airport to send off their aunt and cousins  to board a flight back to Auckland.

After an early breakfast, Alycia's classmates came over to work on a Kemahiran Hidup (Living Skills) project.

The first classmate who turned up was a boy, X. When the doorbell rang, I got a little surprise to see a lanky young lad standing outside the door with his mother! LOL!  Alycia had not informed me that there were boys in her team!    X's mother and I introduced ourselves and he came in.  It felt really really awkward to be inviting a boy into the house and calling out to Alycia to welcome her friend.

Alycia had planned to have the project carried out in her bedroom as her computer is in the room. Since X was half an hour early, we had them seated at the dining table.   Alycia felt awkward too, with just X  around but X was pretty good in breaking the ice. He's a chatty guy with a great sense of humour too.  An hour later, all the team members arrived.  I ordered McDonald's, to be delivered over.

The kids working on their project.

The kids played, munched on snacks and yakked more than working on the project!  I was the one who was doing most of the thinking for them!  Oh well, I didn't expect them to have the discipline of an adult. After all, they are only a bunch of 11-year olds and 12-year olds.

When the project was finally completed after 4 hours, the kids played table tennis at the function room while I brought Cass for swimming.

Daddy joined in the table tennis game too later...

The last kid left at 7:30pm after spending a day at our place.   Alycia had a swell time with her classmates. As for me, I was tuckered out after a long day and this Hari Raya holiday ain't no holiday at all for me.  Alycia needs to be in school on Monday and Tuesday while everyone else gets a holiday!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Musang King Durian Party - Round 2

We had another round of Musang King durian party on Sunday at home!  All the Yap relatives converged at our home for a mega party cum reunion.

The hubs ordered over 30kg of Grade A Musang King durians...

While the adults had durian, the kids had pizzas and chicken wings from Dominos, again!

Fruit rojak for those from overseas who have not tasted this for yonks...

None of the kids went near the durians, though my girls are lovers of the king of fruits... just because their cousins don't like durians :D

Friday, July 10, 2015

A Good Workout Friday - 10 July 2015

This morning I had a very good workout, not once but twice!

After half an hour of air-walking in the gym and another half an hour of brisk walk on the road, I had my shower. Then my friend's hubby came to send me my new batch of stock of Izumio hydrogen water and Super Lutein.   The both of us carried the 12 boxes of Izumio from his car to the lobby of my condo.  Each box of Izumio contains 6 liters of hydrogen water and the weight is about 6kg per box.  After he left, I transferred the boxes of Izumio onto the trolley and dragged the trolley of 6 boxes (over 36kg) back to the 5th floor.  I had to make 2 rounds as only a  max of 6 boxes can fit onto the trolley at a time. More than that - the boxes will topple over.  By the time I was done loading the first round of 6 boxes onto the trolley, I was already sweating profusely, though I had just taken my first shower.  By the time I was done dragging the second round of 6 boxes of Izumio on the trolley back to my unit, I was oozing sweat all over.

Back home, I had to carry the 12 boxes of Izumio inside and find space to store them.

By the time I was done placing the 12 boxes of Izumio, I was already drenched with sweat.  That took me about half an hour to transfer the 12 boxes of Izumio from my friend's car back to my unit and had them arranged nicely.  All in, I lifted more than 100kg of weights today!  And needless to say, I had another shower from head to toe, though I had just taken my first shower half an hour ago! These days, with mercury rising up to 38 degrees Celsius,  I need 4-5 showers in a day, I kid you not.  Only a housewife would understand why we need so many showers in a day!

Now, the muscles on my hands feel sore.  What do you expect from a petite lady weighing 45kg but had to carry over 100kg weight!  Good thing is I had burnt at least another 150-200 calories from this kuli job haha!

Some of the stock you see here belong to my customers and some for our own consumption.  If you are interested to get a box or two to try, you can buzz me at my email at shireenyong@gmail.com.

Have a good weekend! :)

For more reading on Izumio and Super Lutein, please click on the following links:

 Dangers of Eczema Steroid Creams

Super Lutein and Izumio Hydrogen Water For Glaucoma

Effects of Hydrogen Rich Water On Metabolic Syndrome (Diabetes and Obesity) - from US National Library of Medicine

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Eve Of Exam - 6 July 2015

They should be revising for their exam. They would have to sit for 3 test papers tomorrow (today) but the girls were having a time of their lives playing with their visiting cousins from New Zealand.

Hopefully with lots of play, their brain would be decluttered from the stress of exam, leaving it more space for what should stay inside.

After an hour of play, we had pizzas and BBQ chicken drummets delivered by Dominoes  - the kids' occasional food, which I'd only order during the exam week (once only during each exam week).

As usual, my pix got photo-bombed by starving kids who just couldn't wait to lay their hands on their once-in-a-blue-moon treat :D

Friday, July 3, 2015

Feasting On Durians

Hubs has been buying durians every other day.  Yesterday, he brought home some Grade A+ Musang King durians that were from his friend's durian orchard and oh my, the durians were indeed superb!! My visiting elder brother, SIL and niece from Singapore had the opportunity to taste the durians.

The texture of the Grade A+ Musang King flesh was fine and creamy and taste was bitter sweet.
I must say that it is the thick luscious flesh and fine creamy and moist texture that discern these Grade A+ Musang King from its inferior siblings.  It is comparable with the Bamboo Leg durian species.

So how do we manage to keep 'heatiness' at bay from all these crazy durian binging?  With Izumio hydrogen water of course and I swear by it - for my kids and me!   During each durian season in the past, getting a sore throat is not uncommon for us.  Thankfully this time, we have Izumio to bring down the heatiness from the durians and crazy heatwave.  And we have Super Lutein to strengthen our immune system guards too :D

Give me a buzz via email @ shireenyong@gmail.com if you want to find out more on Izumio and Super Lutein.