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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant @ Pavillion KL

On 27 May 2012, which was our 12th wedding anniversary / 13th ROM anniversary, we went to Watami Japanese Casual restaurant to sample some "good and affordable" Japanese food.  This was what some food bloggers had described the food at Watami as in their blogs.

As usual, we started off with a salad.  We ordered the Watami Salad (RM19.90) -- a refreshing salad of fresh raw  greens with red onions, corn, cherry tomatoes, brocolli florets, shredded cucumber, shrimp, teriyaki chicken, nori, flying fish roe and fried wantons tossed with tuna mayo and goma (sesame cream) dressing.

With a tummy rumbling after a long wait for our food, my 4YO baby girl could not wait to lay her hands on the Gyu Eringii Kushi.  The Komochi Shishamo (pregnant fish) is my all-time favorite grilled fish whenever we dine at a Japanese restaurant. I like the idea of a no-waste fish, where I can chomp down the fish from head to tail, even the bones :D

We ordered 2 bowls of Japanese noodles -- Shio Ramen and Shoyu Ramen, specially for our 3 noodles crazed girls...

Can't remember what this is called. It tastes something like fish cake and I find it a tad salty for the kids as well as for myself. 

Japanese style sticky dumpling... not sure what it is called and it tasted mediocre.

Gyuniku Sukiyaki Nabe (Japanese hot pot) @ RM24.90 -- shiitake and enokitake, beef, tofu, chinese cabbage, leek are slowly simmered in a pot of  flavorful soup. Once the soup starts to boil, you break in the egg and mix everything up for a smoother texture and better flavour.

We also ordered a Ishiyaki Bibimbap aka hot stone rice (but had forgotten to snap a pic of it), which was very tasty, a Tempura set and Kyuri maki.

We will definitely dine at Watami again, the next time we shop at Pavillion.

Watami Malaysia: Japanese Casual Restaurant
C4.04.00, Level 4, Pavilion KL Shopping Mall,
168, Jalan Bukit Bintang,
55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +603 2141 6671

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Dedicated Teacher

Rascal #2 received this pretty butterfly wrist band from her English teacher from school (Chinese school) last week. Before the exam, the teacher had promised all the Primary 1 students in Sherilyn's class that she will give them each a present if they can score a mark of 80% and above for their English test paper in the recent mid-term exam. My rascal came home from school and proudly showed me the wrist band. She had scored a 93% for her English test paper. She lost all her marks to sheer carelessness and not because she did not know how to answer those questions. I think she could have done better had she been more careful. Nevertheless, I am pretty contented with this rascal's marks for all her test papers. And I am very amazed that this English teacher had taken the trouble and money to get gifts for her pupils to motivate them to do well. It does not matter that the gift is cheap (well, the butterfly came off from the strap the same day that she had received it and the quality looked cheesy). What matters is that the teacher was willing to spend some money and time to buy those gifts to encourage her students to study hard in order to achieve good marks. Such dedicated teachers are an almost extinction breed these days. Do you not agree with me?

Monday, May 28, 2012

My 2 Teaching Assistants

Whenever I am busy, I will surely enlist the help of my girls. The youngest can help me with preparation of the Pos Laju bags and tearing of consignment notes. Sometimes she helps with folding the clothes. The 2 older girls can now help me read to their baby sister -- story books and flash cards from her pre-school. And my 4YO baby girls finds it more fun when her che ches read to her, rather than mummy.

Here are my 2 assistants - Alycia would be in charged of reading the Mandarin flash cards and Sherilyn is in charged of the BM and English flash cards. I am blessed with 3 girls, truly I am and I thank my blessings every  night :)


Friday, May 25, 2012

Cass At Work

Years ago, it was her che ches who used to help me with the sticking of docket plastic bags onto the Pos Laju parcel bags. Now that her che ches are always busy with school homework and tuition, I have trained her to take over this task, which is no easy job, especially for a 4-year old. One needs to have good hand and eye coordination and hand dexterity to handle this job well.  It's not easy becoz if you do not handle the sticky section (which is super sticky and flimsy too, thus making it difficult to hold the piece of sticker bag) of the docket plastic bag with care, the entire bag will be twisted or damaged.  But my baby girl could  carry out her job very well with almost 0% damages done, thus far! Good job Cassandra!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Little Singer In The Making

I thought she has a super 'bad memory' as she cannot seem to remember very well educational facts. Things that she had learned in pre-school a year ago were forgotten when I went through with her recently.  She would always give me a 'blur' look whenever I do revision with her, sending me to the loo to vomit blood!  But know what, she did very well in her recent mid-term exam, with marks that I never expected to see. All 90% and above, even for her Chinese paper.

This 7-YO girl of mine has got superb memory when it comes to memorizing lyrics of songs, verses, poems and Chinese poetry.  Recently she volunteered to participate in an English song singing competition.  Then today in school, again she put up both her hands and was earnestly hoping to be chosen to participate in a Chinese song singing competition.  Just now I saw her reading lyrics of Chinese folk songs from her school song book and she was practicing her vocals for almost an hour.  She could sing pretty well and has very good tone too. I am surprised that she is doing all these when I have never seen Alycia doing this sort of singing, though she is already in Standard 3 now.  Alycia then told me that she hates singing!  What a contrast in personality these 2 sisters have.  One is sporty while the other one is like a 'siew jei', who prefers to be dancing in an air-conditioned room.

What I admire most is Sherilyn's confidence and boldness to go up the stage to sing facing hundreds of pupils and teachers.  I asked her if she felt a teeny weeny bit nervous and had stage fright when she sang in front of so many people and she gave me a resounding NO with a "why should I be embarrassed?" look on her face.   She told me just now that when she sang in the recent English song singing competition, a boy gave her his thumbs down!  I felt so hurt for her.  I asked her if she felt embarrassed  with being jeered at but she gave me the same answer and an unfazed look.  I am loving this girl's cheerful and happy-go-lucky attitude in another perspective.  And I hope that she will continue to have such high level of confidence and positive outlook in life, without neglecting her studies.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Cass At Work

My 4-year old baby girl loves lending a helping hand to mah mah each time she sees mah mah plucking veggie leaves from the stems.

And if you are wondering what veggie Cass is helping to pluck off here, this is a kind of vege with tiny elongated leaves and has medicinal values. I buy them from a farmer from Seremban who plants them naturally (without the use of pesticides) in a farm.  She comes to our place twice a week to sell her organic produce.  This species of vege is supposedly good for the relief of hand numbness and diabetes.  For the past one year or longer, I have been suffering from hand numbness every morning. The numbness is more profound if the air-cond room that I am sleeping in is cooler than usual or if I sleep on my side. I suffered from a very bad bout of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome immediately after the birth of Alycia.  Till today, I still get this terrible numbness on my hands, especially on my right hand every morning just before I wake up.

So did this vege help to remove the numbness in my hand? Well, not completely.  I still get the numbness on my hands several times in a week.  I think I'll need to chow down a plate full of this vege everyday to be able to see significant results.  But it's impossible as the vege seller does not come to our place daily. Even if she does, we may not have a helping hand to pluck those leaves everyday as it is a darn time-consuming chore.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Quirky Kids

Caught Alycia holding on to her baby sister's hand whilst the both of them were deeply engrossed watching the TV and she was smelling Cass' hand, as if the hand was her nice-smelling smelly bolster LOL!! 

The funniest part is that Cass was not even aware that her che che was busy smelling and hugging her hand. Both of them would be like in a 'trance' whenever they are deeply engrossed watching the TV, oblivious to the surroundings and even oblivious to me hollering at them!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Homemade Goodies To Nourish The Soul

While I was busy doing revision with Alycia and Sherilyn last weekend, my mil busied herself in the kitchen by baking cookies and cakes for her beloved granddaughters.

Here's a tray of organic oats-pistachios-almonds cookies that she baked.

And here are just part of the dishes that she whipped up for dinner last week...

Stir-fried leek with roast pork, steamed minced pork with Chinese preserved veggie (my favorite!)...

Oven-grilled salmon with crackling skin -- everyone's favorite!

Pan-fried tofu braised with minced pork and egg, stir-fried big head bean sprouts and pan-fried salmon in the background....

Yesterday, she baked some carrot cup cakes with lemon cheese cream and pistachios topping. Now, she is busying herself in the kitchen cooking dinner. My tummy is growling now as the aromatic 'holy smoke' is wafting into my work area from the kitchen!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

An Early Morning Near-Miss Heart Attack

Since her babyhood, rascal #2 has been giving me umpteen numbers of heart-beat stopping moments.  From a 8-day constipation episode during her infancy to being hit by a high moving swing, her thumb being squashed by a steel door, a crack on her forehead resulting from a piggy-back ride fall, a walk into a glass door which smashed her front tooth and lips, the list goes.  This morning she gave me another scare. At about 7am, I received a call on my mobile phone. Now any phone call at this hour of the day is NOT good!  My heart skipped a beat when I heard the phone ring. My heart skipped a few more beats when I heard a little girl's voice and it was Sherilyn's!  The incoming call number that appeared on my mobile phone was 012-xxxxxxx.  This is not good I thought.  What was racing on my mind was accident and ransom -- the 2 most dreaded fears by a mother. I know I am a dramatic person but these things can happen to anyone. 

Rascal #2 had left her school's message book behind.  She had called me to check where it was.  She gave it to me last night but in my haste to bring Cass to the ER of the hospital for an ear infection last night, I had forgotten to sign it and did not put it back into her bag.  I thought that my rascal had borrowed her friend's handphone or used the school office phone to call me but she had used the pay phone at the school.  Now I am wondering how on earth does she know how to use the pay phone as I do not remember ever teaching her how to use it.  I will grill her when she is back later!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Meals Served By Daycare Centres

When I picked Cass up from pre-school a few days ago, I saw one of the assistant teachers preparing lunch for the daycare kids.  I was taken aback with what I saw.  She was scooping rice onto the plates and each plate of rice had about 1-2 tablespoons of steamed egg. She then mixed the rice with the steamed egg.  The steamed egg was plain without any minced meat but just a drizzle of soy sauce.  I asked the assistant teacher if that was it for lunch.  Any veggie? Any soup? And she smiled and said NO.  I was like "That was it??!"  I seriously think that there should at least be a plate of green veggie or a simple soup. But that was just it.  A  no-frills budget meal for growing up small kids. Several times last year when I picked Sherilyn up from that pre-school, I saw the same assistant teacher preparing lunch for the daycare kids.  Lunch consisted of only 1 dish or only 1 soup.  Once I saw baked beans with rice and that was it.  Another time I saw a simple ABC soup with rice and that was it.

Parents, do you think that the quality of food served by daycare centres should improve? At the very least, there should be a meat (or an egg) + veggie dish everyday.  And I am just very curious to know if other pre-schools serve similar type of food with solo dish for lunch everyday.  If I can remember correctly, the daycare fee is about RM500+ a month from that pre-school and this I think is costly taking into consideration the quality of food that is served.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Nominated As School Prefect On Probation

Alycia came home from school yesterday and related excitedly to me that she has been selected to be on the prefectorial board of her school.  A total of 12 students from her class of about 40 students were selected.  The selected 'nominees' would have to undergo a 3-month probation period, after which they will be 'officially' installed as full-fledged prefects.  Starting today, she wore the school's neck-tie and would have to wear it not only on a Monday but everyday. She was also given a yellow tag with the word 'trainee prefect' written in Chinese, which was clipped to her pinafore.  One of the criteria that the prefects on probation would have to meet is that they have to be in school by 7am to be on duty. This I am not sure if she could meet as the time in which she reaches school all depends on the transporter. I think she would be able to meet other criteria like exemplary behaviour and satisfactory achievement in academics, though I think there is also room for improvement in her leadership skill. Well, I shall wait patiently and see if she passes the probation or not. Even if she does not, I will not be disappointed as I know she's trying to put in her best effort now.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Kids' Quirks

My 3 daughters all have their very own quirks.  This is one of Alycia's -- dunking Oreos into her mug of green apple-carrot-pear-orange juice!  Her quirky mummy came up with the quirky juice concoction :D

Monday, May 7, 2012

My Kids Still Prefer Chopsticks

My kids are true blue Chinese.  They still prefer using a Chinese bowl, Chinese spoon and chopsticks to eat to plate, fork and spoon.  All 3 of them mastered using the chopsticks  at age 3 years old.  It is only when their mah mah is around that they get to use the chopsticks though as she uses them too. I do not really encourage usage of chopsticks by rascal #2 and #3 as they're not they type who would sit still during mealtimes. Chopsticks usage can be pretty hazardous for hyperactive kiddos like them who move about a lot during meal times.


Sunday, May 6, 2012

Tanning Without The Sun

Each time I see someone sun basking on the deck chair at the pool of our condo at the peak of the scorching sun in the afternoon, I think to myself that these people are crazy!! I am one who will surely 'melt' in the sun. I hate the feeling of my skin roasting under the searing sun, not to mention that I am also risking my skin to skin cancer. But some people think otherwise. They jump at the opportunity of getting a sun tan when they see the bright yellow sun. They don on their skimpiest swimwear and some even lay bare to be roasted by the sun. If you want to get a nice tan for your pale skin, there is a better way to do it through mobile spray tanning equipment!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

My Typical Afternoon With Cassandra

On most afternoons when her 2 che ches are not around, Cassandra has mummy all to herself. I will guide her with her homework, practice flash cards or read books from her pre-school with her. When I need to complete some work on the desktop computer urgently, she will be seated next to me at my work desk, where I will have to split myself into three parts -- guiding my baby girl, doing online assignments and attending to my online store. When Alycia and Sherilyn come back from school at 4pm, that's the peak period of my day. That's when I have to metamorphose into a super multi-tasker handling 20 tasks at the same time, I kid you not!

Cassandra snacking on some cherry tomatoes, which are her favourite vegetables while I practice flash cards with her. That's our typical afternoon on a school-going day.

  Cassandra at exactly 4 years old.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

When Mummy Is Busy

When mummy's busy and can't leave the desktop PC, whoever needs some guidance in her homework has to be seated next to her. This is my typical afternoon on a week day and everyone's happy. I get to do some work while teaching the little one her work. Her homework gets done and so does mine, albeit only partially.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Luck, Destiny and lots of hard work

I have just ditched my existing insurance agent who has a lackadaisical attitude and switched to another insurance agent from another insurance company. This husband and wife team insurance agents are indeed a wonderful team who work together so well making big bucks though neither one of them are university graduates. The hubby left school after Form 5 (or was it Form 3?). They got married after they left school and had their first born when the lady was still a teenager. The couple are now in their mid thirties and have 4 kids, including 2 teenage kids! They are earning a 5-figure income every month with a bunch of charges under them. They sell a whole range of insurance products including error and omission insurance. They can afford several overseas vacations in a year and are leading a life that everyone would dream to have. I call this pure luck and fate. And of course one needs to put in lots of hard work and have a very determined and positive mind-set.

Baby C's 3rd Post-Surgery Anniversary

Every year at the start of May, since May 2009, I really cannot help going down the horror memory lane that lasted for 3 nightmarish weeks. This morning as I was going through the list of May 2012 public holidays on a piece of paper from Sherilyn's ballet school, which is stuck to our fridge door, I remembered that in 3 days' time, it will be the 3rd anniversary of Cassandra's surgery.  On 5 May 2009, my then 13-month old baby went through a major surgery that lasted over 5 hours. Something really wrong happened after the surgery and she was cut up again 2 weeks later... after daily X-rays, a CT scan and other invasive scans failed to diagnose what was wrong with her intestines.

Day 1 - after the 1st op which was a Ureteral Reimplantation surgery. She was down with high fever for over a week. Surgeon suspected something was wrong as there should not be a fever for so long. She was devoid of food via mouth for 3 weeks and had to be fed with nutrients through a tube that was inserted through her right chest.

Day 2 of the 1st surgery. I myself was down with high fever, throat infection and flu, whilst hubs was hospitalized and isolated at the same hospital (suspicion of H1N1). I wore a face mask 24 hours a day but Baby's immune system was weak and she too got bitten by the bug. It was a triple whammy for me! 

And my baby girl 3 years later... a very happy, chatty and charming girl. She has definitely come a long way and is the toughest little girl I have ever met.  May God bestow upon this girl with an abundance of good health forever and NO more surgery for her.