Friday, January 23, 2009

A Great GONG XI FA CAI To All!

Wishing all a Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year.

May you be blessed with HEALTH, WEALTH & HAPPINESS all through the Ox year!

Cheers :)

Fussy Mum & Family

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Our Precious Girl

Our precious girl is 4 years and 3 months old today. I just realized this when I looked at the calendar this morning. Hence, I wish to write this post to jot down her development so far. Sharlene has grown up tremendously over the years. I must say our life is so complete with her around. *smile* She brings so much joy and happiness into our daily life and most importantly, the valuable experience that we gained in the course of our duty as parents. Of course we also have to deal with her difficult attitude and other typical problems from time to time. Honestly, at one time I thought I would never experience this wonderful feeling in my life.

I have so much to write about my precious darling but don’t really know where to begin. Don't worry, it will not be a long-winded post (I hope). I shall make it as short and sweet as possible :)

At her age now, our girl is more understanding. She knows she has to sleep early during school days and will not kick up a big fuss when I say it’s time to go up to her room. Occasionally, she will attempt to delay her bedtime especially when she's in the midst of playing with her cousin sister. Nowadays she wants daddy to sleep with her too. Being hyperactive and playful, she loves to play hide and seek in the room before she let me brush her teeth and change her clothes. She still cannot sit unmoving when I read to her.

She likes to share her food but definitely not her toys. Whenever I give her some snacks like honey stars or peanuts (she’s crazy over all kind of nuts), I will prompt her to share with her cousin sister. At first, she did not want to oblige but now she will go around the house and offer everyone her food. Sometimes she even put it directly into my mouth. So sweet~~

It’s really sad and unbelievable to say that Sharlene still doesn’t like to go to school even though she’s in K2 this year. Every time I mention about school her response would be “Mummy, I don’t want to go to school, I don’t like school”. She won't cry or protest in the morning but when she reaches school, she just refuses to mix with other children. She won't smile also :( She prefers to stay at one corner or sit in the classroom when other kids are running and screaming outside. I’m really worried about her aloof behavior and what will happen if she goes on behaving this way.?? Hopefully this is only a fleeting phase and she will soon get out of this.

Although she dislikes going to school, she still looks at her school books, completes her daily homework without much fuss (she has 3-4 books of homework [writing and colouring] everyday now) and willing to share with me the things she did in school. Sometimes, she even sings for me. It's really hilarious when she sings. :)

Lately she likes to say this to me - Mummy, I love you very much. At times she would surprise me with a hug too. Her action really melts my heart. I don't know where she learnt this from. Perhaps from us as hubby and I love to hug and kiss her everyday without fail.

Hmmm...there are so much more to write about my girl but guess I got to stop now before it turns into a lengthy post. Thanks for reading peeps :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Some Of My CNY Cookies

I've finished baking my CNY cookies a week ago. I am glad that this year Sharlene’s nanny was around to help me out. With her assistance I managed to make 4 types of cookies in 2 days. Apart from that I also have 2 little helpers in the kitchen and they were none other than Sharlene and her piao cheh.

I gave them the easiest task i.e. to sift the flour. They did pretty well with one holding the sieve and the other one scooping and scraping the flour into the sieve. But obviously crumbs of flour were scattered everywhere by them. I think my flour weighs a little lesser at the end of the sifting process. *frown* My 2 keen helpers weren’t so eager after all. They didn’t stay in the kitchen for long.

Here are the first 2 types of cookies which I baked on a Saturday –

My all-time favorite, Choc-chips Hazelnut cookies. This cookies are very crunchy, nutty and full of hazelnut flavor. Simply yummy!!

My very first attempt in baking traditional peanut cookies. For this, all you need to have are peanut, sugar, salt, flour and peanut oil. It’s simple and the ingredients were cheap too. I was satisfied with the outcome but maybe lack of appearance, as I was too lazy to decorate it with half a peanut on top of each cookie.

Cornflakes and Mixed Fruits cookies which were baked on the next day. For this, I reduced the sugar too much and hence, the cookies taste a bit plain. Sigh! my oversight. :(

Nevertheless, I was very contented with the overall result. I actually produced quite a few containers of cookies this year – the above 3 varieties plus ‘kok chai’, ngaku and seaweed crisps. I’ve since kept my baking utensils in the storeroom and will not be baking any more cookies until the next CNY.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Walking On The Foot Reflexology Path

There is a foot reflexology path situated in the playground nearby my house. Besides this facility, there is also a jogging track that hubby and I go for our morning jog every weekend. One fine evening, we brought Sharlene and her cousin sister to this playground. As usual they enjoyed so much of running around, chasing after each other and playing with the facilities in the park while hubby and I watched over them. Occasionally, I play along with them too. Hubby will usually be the photographer.

Before we left the playground, I took off my sandals and went on the foot reflexology path. This path consists of stones of varying shapes and sizes. Some of them are rather thick, flat and rounded and others are thin and sharp to give a stronger stimulation to the feet. I quite like the massaging sensation on the sole of my feet but at times it can be painful as well.

After seeing me walking on the path and out of curiosity, the 2 girls also tried to step their feet on the stones. They walked so slowly and carefully with their eyes fixated on the stones to avoid those sharp-edged pebbles. They whined, laughed and giggled along the way. I just can’t help but laughed at their funny expression and the way Sharlene said, Ouch, ouch, my leg...ouch, so pain! Despite the pain she still continues walking with her cousin sister.

Kids being kids, they just love to have fun and follow what the adults do. :D

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Winnie The Pooh Coin Box

Sharlene received her first coin box during a barbecue party held at our friend’s house last year. She loves to receive presents and as usual she can’t wait to unwrap her little pressie given by our friend. Once the wrapper was removed, she quickly pulled out the contents and was fascinated with the cute Winnie The Pooh coin box (a.k.a. piggy bank). She didn’t want to part with her new piggy bank for the whole night. Whilst she was holding her piggy bank, one uncle was so kind to bring out some coins from his pocket and drop it into her piggy bank. Her face lighted up immediately! Guess what she did next? She then went around the house asking for coins to be put into her piggy bank. *pengsan* Some guests even obliged her request. Later I managed to stop her from doing it.

Being very persistent in collecting coins to fill up her piggy bank, she took out my wallet from my handbag and started to search for coins.

She poured out all the coins in my wallet and needless to say, the whole load of it ended up in her box. Hopefully when she’s older she can be a thrifty spender and learn to save up her money like the way she’s doing now. :)

She started to feel bored and gloomy after she had finished putting all the coins in. Look at her pitiful expression here.

Haizz, no more coins already.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

"Your Blog Is Fabulous!" Award

Thank you so much Ling for passing this award to me. I feel really honored to receive it. Hopefully one day, my blog will be as fabulous as yours.

As part of this award, I must now list 5 addictions and then pass on to 5 more fabulous blogs.

My addictions:

1. chocolate chip cookies
2. chilli padi
3. hugging and kissing my daughter
4. ice-cream
5. surfing the net

I'm passing this award to:

All my blogging friends out there - Every one of you has fabulous blogs!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Jumbo Inflatable

~This is a backdated post~

Hubby and I brought the 2 girls out during one of the school holidays weekends. On our way to the shopping mall car park we saw a colorful jumbo inflatable placed outside Ikano. The 2 girls were thrilled by the look of it instantly and pestered us to bring them there. So instead of heading to the shopping complex first, we went to check out the play land. We paid an entrance fee for the 2 girls (can’t recall the amount but it was definitely less than RM10 per kid).

They had so much fun playing on the giant slide and they don’t seem to get bored of climbing and gliding down the inflatable over and over again. Hubby took the opportunity to snap some of their happy moments with his Samsung handphone.

Here are a few pixs of the 2 happy girls :)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Triple Awards!

Many thanks to Kristie for these lovely awards. I'm so happy to receive them all in a row ;)

Here are the rules for the recipients:

1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 10 blogs which show great Attitude and/or Gratitude!
3. Be sure to link to your nominees within your post.
4. Let them know that they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
5. Share the love and link to this post and to the person from whom you received your award.

I would like to share the above awards with the following bloggers:

1. Mummy Moon
2. Irene
3. Doreen
4. Suesue
5. Olive
6. Leona
7. Adrine
8. Slavemom
9. Rachel
10. Mummy Gwen

Friday, January 09, 2009

Sharlene And Her Interest In Learning Mandarin

Sharlene has very little interest in learning Mandarin. I realized this sometime last year when she chooses to read only the English and Bahasa school books most of the time. Her Chinese school book is always left behind and she will only look at it when I told her to do so. I am starting to worry as this year she has more Chinese books. Needless to say, there will be more mandarin homework as well. I’m just so afraid she can’t pick up this language if she doesn’t show much interest in learning now. Sharlene’s nanny is currently coaching her in her Mandarin homework and hopefully under her guidance she’s able to improve.

Just before the school closes for holidays last year, Sharlene’s class teacher told me that whenever she speaks to her or asks her question in Mandarin, she would reply and answer her in English. I suppose she understood the question at that time otherwise she would not have answered her teacher. Looks like I really have to 'zhiang hua yue' (speak mandarin) with her more often.

The pre-school that she is attending focuses mainly in Chinese, even the Principal and teachers speak to the students in Mandarin. I even noticed that majority of Sharlene’s peers speak good Mandarin. Hubby and I intend to enroll her in a Chinese primary school, as we really want her to learn and be able to speak Mandarin. It’s always good to know an extra language, don’t you agree with me? At the moment she can only speak a smattering of Mandarin. I am trying my best to speak more Mandarin with her nowadays. Sometimes when she doesn’t understand what I’m saying she would show me her blurry stare or totally ignore my existence. But apart from that it’s quite fun to converse with her in Mandarin.

Yesterday she gave me a pleasant surprise. She was riding her tricycle in front of the house when I arrived home. I got down from my car to open the gate. At that time she was pointing her finger at something on the ground and said Mummy, ‘ni kan che li’ (look at here). I was elated that she uttered those words and I quickly walked towards her direction to see what she's trying to show me. Guess what she’s pointing at? Hah…it’s a pile of dog droppings!! Yucks, and luckily she didn’t run over it with her tricycle.

Anyway, that's surely a good start and I hope she uses more of this language everyday. :)

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Scott's Vitamin C Pastilles

I bought a bottle of Scott's Vitamin C Pastilles from Guardian Pharmacy for Sharlene a few months ago. She already finished the first bottle and this is actually her 2nd bottle, which I purchased from the pharmacy last week. I’m not too sure of the retail price but I got it for RM9+. The bottle contains 50 pastilles of mixed berries (blackcurrants, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries) flavour. Everyday after dinner I will give her 2 pastilles of this to chew. She loved this tasty and healthy snack very much and would always ask for more. However, I can’t accede to her request, as the recommended dosage is 2-3 pastilles per day only. Apart from vitamin C Sharlene is also taking Scott's Emulsion cod liver oil. She has been taking cod liver oil since she was 1 year plus. While everyone at home hates the smell of this stinking fish oil, Sharlene enjoyed taking it so much that she would slowly savor and lick the cod liver oil from her spoon. Sometimes she even spilled and stained her clothes with a few drops of fish oil. After that, she really smells 'fishy'...haha! :D

Anyway, I really hope that these 2 supplements can help Sharlene to build up her body's natural resistance against infection and also help her body maintain good health.

Monday, January 05, 2009

1st Weekend Of 2009

It was another busy weekend for me where I had spent most of my time in the kitchen. I have started baking my first batch of cookies for Chinese New Year. It’s the right timing to start now as CNY is approaching very soon, in about 3 weeks’ time only. As I am working the only time I can bake is during the weekends. I normally prefer to bake my own cookies for CNY, as they are cheaper, tastier and not too sweet. If I am following a particular recipe I always reduce the amount of sugar by 20gm – 30gm. In times like now, I am sure a lot more people will home baked their own cookies. It really saves you a great deal than buying them from shops. But the only thing is that you need to spend a lot of time doing it.

I already planned to bake 5 types of cookies this year. Hopefully, I will have enough time to bake all of them. During the weekends, I managed to do ‘kok chai’ (mini peanut puffs) and fry approximately 7kg of ‘ngaku’ (arrowhead chips) with the help of Sharlene's nanny.

I love to eat ‘kok chai’ make by Sharlene’s nanny. Every CNY I would look forward to her tasty and crusty 'kok chai'. I wanted so much to learn the way of doing it and finally I’ve got her to teach me how to do it last Saturday :)

Here's the mini peanut puffs ready for deep-frying. The pastry dough consists of plain flour, peanut oil and water only. It took me one whole hour to master the skill of pinching the sides (which resembles flower plait) to enclose the filling. Phew! really not an easy job but so glad I was able to acquire the technique and I am an expert now...haha. Besides doing this way, you can get a mould to save the hassle of pinching with hands.

And here is the filling for the puffs - combination of ground roasted peanuts, toasted sesame seeds and castor sugar.

All you need to do is to deep-fry the puffs in hot oil until the pastry turns golden in colour (like the pix above).

Dish out the puffs and drain them well on kitchen paper. Once they are completely cool store them in air-tight containers.

While we were busy making 'kok chai', hubby and sil went to Tesco for grocery shopping and they bought about 7kg of 'ngaku' (arrowhead) back. So on Sunday, we spent most of our time in the kitchen again to fry the 'ngaku'. Everyone in the house loves this snack to bits!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Rolling Good Time

After we had our lunch on Dongzhi day I made some ‘tang yuen’ (glutinous rice balls) for everyone. I followed this recipe which I saw it in The Star newspaper a few days earlier. The picture of ‘tang yuen’ looked so colourful and appetizing, so that prompted me to try out the recipe which requires orange and purple coloured sweet potatoes. Further, instead of using the usual sugar syrup, this recipe calls for coconut milk and sago. Although it’s very unhealthy to use coconut milk but the taste of the syrup with coconut milk is just so sweet and creamy. Everyone seemed to like the syrup better than the ‘tang yuen’….haha, so at the end of the day, lots of leftover rice balls with no more syrup.

Well, before I cook the ‘tang yuen’ I let Sharlene and her piao cheh have some fun rolling the dough into balls. It was pretty tough to roll the dough with sweet potatoes as it was really wet and sticky. So I just let the girls roll the one without sweet potatoes.

It was easy and look how they enjoyed rolling, pressing and shaping the pink dough into balls.

My little helper was really good at shaping the dough and Jasmine was busy counting her rice balls. Both of them were competing as to who can roll more 'tang yuen'. lol! Like most children, they don't fancy the taste of the rice balls at all.

Mummy, you see my 'tang yuen' is so round.

And here’s the bowl of colourful ‘tang yuen’ but the appearance of it was nothing close to the one in the picture.
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