Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Trip to Genting Highlands

We decided to make a trip to Genting Highlands and it has been a good 6 years since we last been there. And yes, it is only like 1.5 hours drive from home. Now that Isabelle has reached the age of knowing how and want to have some good time, we thought it would be fun to bring her up there to enjoy some cool air, away from the hot weather here and of course, the themepark! Plus it was also our 4 years and 5 months (53 months!) wedding anniversary!

Packed and left home at 10.30am. Isabelle pretend to sleep (I don't know why) and only want to 'sleep' in my arms and not in her seat. We guessed it was the slightly windy road, made her felt uncomfortable and she feels better having me carry her.

Reached the top of the hills at about 12pm. Checked into Hotel Themepark. Despite some negative reviews about this hotel (check-in process, rooms, service etc), I was surprised and glad that it was very much the other way round for me! It took us less than 5 minutes to check-in and the room was immaculately clean and trendy. Nothing major to complain. Worth the value and not too bad for a 3-star hotel. Our room window faces the valley and also the beautiful view of KL city.
As usual, the little boss checking out every corner of the room. She even flip the curtain in & out.

Isabelle : Bag... bag....

View from room

After a light lunch in the room, we adjourned to the themepark. Tried to get Isabelle on some of the kid rides and no, she rejected all of them. So we just took a stroll, click away some pictures for the album. Then head for late lunch and then back to the room.

Daddy warming Isabelle up for her rides

Fish feeding

I took a good solid 2 hours nap with Isabelle while DH read the papers and watch TV (I think he caught a short nap too). Was so tired I just dozed off the moment my head hit the pillows. Had a late night before that.

Relaxed a little in the room after we woke up, feeling recharged. And we hit the themepark again. This time, Isabelle agreed to go on her rides! And after a few rounds of kid rides, yours truly got so bored that I went on a roller coaster ride, all by myself. DH and Isabelle watched from below. I love the thrill and shouting out all my stress was so therapeutic!! Being in Genting and no roller coaster ride is as incomplete as to some, being in Genting and not trying their luck in the casino!

Monorail ride

Fountain - Outdoor theme park entrance

Dinner - Vietnam House
Grilled pork chop rice, Seafood yee mee, Fried spring roll and icecream in coconut

Entertainment after dinner

After a few rounds of rides, we decided we had to hunt for dinner. We were just so spoilt by the many choices. We settled for Vietnam House. The bridge at its entrance was attractive enough to lure us in. I had rice with grilled pork chop and the chili fish sauce was so yummy! DH had yee mee with seafood. So so. We had icecream in coconut for dessert. And Isabelle was the happiest with the icecream!

We resume our rides after dinner. Good to walk around and burn off the calories!

Returned to the room, cleaned up and got Isabelle ready for bed. She must have been exhausted that it didn't took her long to fall asleep.

Got up the next morning at 9.30am and rushed to get ready because the breakfast buffet closes at 10.30am.

Took a walk at the garden outside the hotel and then head back to pack our bags and bid goodbye to the land of cool air and lots of fun.

Job done. Time for a break

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Reflection of a Friendship

*cute picture sourced from google search

I just expressed to a new yet very good friend that I am so blessed to know her. Time is not the most accurate way to measure the depth of a friendship. It is the trust, respect, chemistry and honesty.

What does friendship really means? How do you define true friends?

Friendship & friends....
  • Someone who dares to tell you that dress make you look like a hippo or bamboo stick, and you will not feel offended.
  • Someone who don't agree (blindly) to everything that you said or do just to please you
  • Someone who have the guts to critic your cooking so that you can improve
  • Someone who calls you for no reason
  • Someone who calls you when they need help
  • Someone who may not call you often but you know you are near to each other's hearts and thoughts
  • Someone who encourages you in times of need
  • Someone who is not stingy in praising you (at the right time, for the right things)
  • Someone who will be angry (out of worry and concern) not getting your returned call
  • Someone who don't judge you by how much you have in your savings account
  • Someone who don't mind giving more than receiving
  • Someone who does not care about your background or history and still love you the same
  • Someone who self invites themselves to any party you organizes
  • Someone who you know will be there for you in any circumstances (if not, they will surely get back to you soonest they can)
  • Someone who you won't feel bored even if you see her/him every day up to 3 times a day
  • When you don't need to pretend or be someone you are not
  • You can be yourself (or be at your worst) and you know you won't be judged
  • Not having to hold back your feelings and be true to each other
  • You can tell her/him that you are blessed to know them and not feel embarrassed of wearing your heart on your sleeves

If you have a friend who fits into half if not all of the categories above, do let them know. You have nothing to loose but make a true friend smile and know your friendship is worth it all!

*picture sourced from google search

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

SOS-Dry and Rough Hands!

*picture sourced from google search

I regretted that I took my once so smooth, soft & dainty hands for granted. Being a mom, a cook, a cleaner and a clean freak contributed a lot to my now dry and rough hands. I thought with a faithful washing machine for the laundry, a kind and helpful DH to do the dishes, I would be spared from this painful ugly outcome. But I was so so so wrong. Regular hand wash - CULPRIT. After each diaper change, before feeding Isabelle, cleaning up as I prepare for my cooking and I can't tolerate sink full of potato skins and what nots (they drive my insane!). Not forgetting, I do cook when she is awake and that means I multitask, cooking and watching her at the same time which results to more washing of my hands.

If you know of any proven good home remedy to cure dry and rough hands, please do share with me. I am hoping and praying hard that I will see my once soft hands again, soon. Thank you! :)

Cooking ~ Tomato Tuna Penne & Refreshing Cucumber Salad

Had been in the mood for pasta and salad since last week. Here is what I did for our dinner tonight.

Tomato Tuna Penne
1. A can of tuna (in water or olive oil)
2. 1 onion (diced)
3. Garlic (minced)
4. 4-5 sundried tomatoes (cut into strips)
5. 2 tomatoes (cut into wedges)
6. Swiss brown mushrooms (sliced)
7. Salt and pepper to taste
8. 2-3 tsp of tomato sauce or puree
9. Vegetable oil or EVOO to saute
10. Penne (or any pasta preferred) cooked
11. Parmesan cheese to sprinkle
12. 2-3 tsp of cream or evaporated milk

1. Saute onion and garlic in oil till soft
2. Add in tomato wedges and mushroom. Fry for about 1 minute.
3. Add in sundried tomatoes.
4. Add in tomato sauce or puree.
5. In goes the salt and pepper.
6. Add in water according to preferred consistency of the sauce. Let the sauce simmer for about 2 minutes.
7. Add in tuna. Use spatula to break up the tuna.
8. Mix well and simmer for another 1 minute.
9. For creamier sauce, add in cream. I used about 3 tsp of evaporated milk in this recipe.
10. Pour in the cooked penne and combine them well. Dish up, garnish with parmesan cheese and dig in!

Refreshing Cucumber-Pineapple-Tomato Feta Cheese Salad
1. Diced cucumber (chilled)
2. Diced pineapple (chilled)
3. Diced tomato (chilled)
4. 1 tsp of balsamic vinegar
5. A pinch of black pepper
6. 1/2 tsp of olive oil or vegetable oil
7. Some feta cheese (preferred quantity)

1. Mix the cucumber, pineapple and tomato
2. Mix the oil, balsamic vinegar and pepper in a separate bowl. Then drizzle on to the mixed fruits.
3. Garnish with feta cheese. Ready to be served.

DH - Can we have this everyday?
DS - Thumbs up for the penne and requested for more sauce the next time I make this again. No comments for salad because to her, salad is rabbit food and she gave it a pass.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Banana Leaf Rice & Masak Masak

I love Saturdays!!! Well, who doesn't right?

Our plan to go to the park had to be called off when it started to rain the moment we step into the car. So we made a detour to the market to get some groceries for next week. While I shop around, DH took Isabelle to a toy kiosk and bought her her first masak-masak set (toy cooking set). She was very excited and keep telling us 'Please open'. We told her she had to wait till we get home and she was obedient and cooperated. Then we head for banana leaf rice lunch at TTDI Sri Paandi! It has been a very long while since I had this. If memory serves me right, before I had Isabelle. We always enjoy watching Isabelle experience new things, and we know this one would be no different too! What more, this is her first banana leaf experience!

Banana leaf rice and papadam!

Left: Exploring her masak-masak set. She said, 'Isabelle cooking eggs'! :)
Right: Daddy played along and asked her for coffee! :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Cooking ~ Pumpkin Rice Flour Cake (Kim Kua Kuey) - Steamed & Panfried

This is one savory snack I can have for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner and even supper! I grew up eating this snack every now & then. My aunt (who is also my god mom) whom I fondly called her Mami, was an expert making this special snack and always made it for me when I was young. But I do not longer have this chance because she has been called home by the Lord. I miss her dearly and by learning to make this dish, it feels that I am keeping her love and memories alive.

Fillings ~
1. 1 medium size pumpkin. Cut off skin and remove seeds. Cut the flesh into strips (or any size or shapes preferred)
2. Garlic (chopped)
3. Onion (sliced)
4. 7-8 mushrooms (soaked in water and diced)
5. Dried prawns (soaked in water and minced)
6. Pork belly (thinly sliced and cut into strips)
7. For seasonings - pepper, salt & sugar
8. Water or chicken stock

Batter ~
1. 600 gm of rice flour
2. 2 tsp of corn starch
3. 800 ml water
4. A pinch of salt and pepper

1. Mix the batter ingredients. Strain and put aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan and saute onion and garlic till fragrant
3. Add in the pork belly. Let them sweat.
4. Once the pork belly is slightly golden, add in dried prawns. Fry till they start to dance on the pan.
5. Add in diced mushrooms. Fry till they are well combined.
6. Add in pumpkins. Let all the ingredients coat the pumpkins.
7. Add in seasonings.
8. Pour in water, just enough to cover the pumpkins. Simmer for about 2-3 mins.
9. Lower the fire and pour in the flour mixture (step 1). Continue to stir till the batter become dry and sticky. Keep fire low.
10. Remove and fill them up in container to be steamed. Steam for approx 45 mins-1 hour or till they batter become firm or thoroughly cooked (check by sticking in a chopstick in the middle of the cake and the chopstick comes out clean).
11. Let it cool for about 20 mins or so. It is easier to slice them when they become firmer after they are cool.
12. You can eat it without panfrying them. But I prefer them crispy so I had them panfried. Dip in chili sauce and voila!

DH - GOOD!! Can fight dim sum's restaurant's rice flour cake!
Me - Not bad for first time trial but I think it would be much better if the batter is firmer. Next round, I will cut down on the water for the batter.
Isabelle - mam mam .. mam mam... please give me...

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Hooray for Wednesday!

Hooray! It is finally the mid of the week and another 2 days to weekend!

When I was on the verge of giving up on Isabelle's potty training due to the many (M.A.N.Y.) accidents and me not being able to catch her timing, today, she wee wee in her potty before I shower her! This is quite a sweet motivation for me to continue with her training. Thank you Isabelle for cooperating and making Mummy happy!

And, here's a sneak peek of what my little precious did today and also one picture from yesterday evening.

Our very cheeky little one!
Taken yesterday evening in our condo's playground

Mini vainpot in the making. Trying to put on the pretty hair band all by herself
Playing with Manfred's toy car that he forgotten to bring home

At our condo's squash court-cum-Isabelle's safe playground
Attempting to open the door with keys

In deep thoughts. In Mummy's sandals

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Progress of Our 22 month old Isabelle

General Words/People/Names/Animals/Objects/Body parts etc





Crocodile ~ Co Co Dull

Sorry ~ So Weee

Thank You






Take out

Fall down

Give me please

Give you

Go down

Go out

Come out


Octopus ~ Oc-toe-past



Swimming ~ Shermain (sounds like a name!)

Swimming Pool ~ Shermain pool

Mikhail ~ Kyle




Audrey ~ Awe Lee =D

Short Sentence ~ Mama come out, Papa go out let's go, I put back, What is { object }, This is { object }

Numbers ~ One, Two, Three (Tee), Four, Five, Six, Seven (Salmon), Eight, Nine, Ten, Eleven (ee leh men), Twelve (twelfff), Thirteen, Fourteen

Alphabets ~ A thru Z

Favourite Music/Songs (Able to sing the whole song/chorus/part of the song/hum the whole song)

ABC Song ~ She can now sing the whole song! :)

Ke Ren Lai (Mandarin song) ~ She can now sing the whole song too! :)

You & Me (by Olivia Ong) ~ One of her favourite non-children song and can even sing the chorus

Jesus Love Me ~ Whole song!

My God is So Big ~ Chorus

Jingle Bell ~ Chorus

She can even invent her own song by filling in the tune of ABC song with other words spontaneously.

Hobbies/Motor Skills/Physical Activities

- Walking up the stairs (without assistance but with close monitoring)

- Walking down the stairs (without assistance but with close monitoring)

- Loves to arrange objects/toys (that includes chairs and some of my kitchen stuffs) according to size, shapes and color.

- Loves to build towers and blocks

- Likes to talk on the phone

- Very good memory, likes and can remember her routine specially bath times.

- Likes to tickle us and laugh very loudly :)

- Painting with water colors

- Likes to help take out and put on her clothes

- Enjoy pretends to feed her dolls and bears, and sometimes check if they poo-ed.

- Can balance on 1 foot and jump with both legs

- Can name her friends by name (Mikhail - Kyle, Aarika, Shawn, Jude, Manfred - Man, Audrey - Awe Lee)


Sleep ~ Isabelle learn to fall asleep by herself since she was 5 months old (no rocking or patting) and it has been a good 17 months!

Potty Training ~ This is an on & off progress. We have been trying to train her for the past week with a few successes and countless accidents. I am trying not to give up and at the same time, not wanting to push her too hard and create fear in her. So will take this one day at a time.

Broccoli-Cauliflower-Mushroom Soup & Garlic Bread

Broccoli-Cauliflower-Mushroom Soup


1. Oil and butter for sautéing

2. Broccoli (cut into small florets)

3. Cauliflower (cut into small florets)

4. Swiss brown mushroom (sliced)

5. Onion (diced)

6. Garlic (chopped)

7. Chicken stock or water

8. Salt and pepper to taste


1. Sauté garlic and onion till soft and fragrant

2. Add in broccoli and cauliflower florets. Fry for 1-2 minutes.

3. Add in the mushroom and fry for another 1 minute.

4. Pour in stock or water just enough to cover the vegetables. Replenish water as and when required.

5. Simmer for about 10 minutes or till the broccoli and cauliflower is tender. Add seasonings and continue to simmer for another 1 minute.

6. Let the soup cool. Scoop half of the soup to blend. Return the blended soup back to the pot with the rest of the unblended portion. *Optional – I prefer chunky veggie in my soup therefore, I didn’t blend the whole pot of soup.

7. Mix well and serve with some cream. I replaced the cream with evaporated milk as I didn’t have any in my fridge today. Drizzle a few drops of olive oil and milk on top of the soup as garnish.

Garlic Bread


1. Butter

2. Minced or grated garlic

3. Bread


1. Mix butter (at room temperature) with minced garlic

2. Freeze them back in the fridge.

3. Toast bread in oven for 2 minutes at 150 degrees.

4. Remove bread from oven and spread garlic butter generously.

5. Return them back into the oven and continue to toast them for 1 minute at 150 degrees.


Garlic Bread

The soup

DH and DS gave me 3 thumbs up! Bonus!

Monday, March 14, 2011

My Little Picasso

My little picasso at work today :)

Tools: Water color, brush, recycle paper and used toilet tissue tube.
Result: Loads of fun and a very happy toddler

Lazy Sunday Pizza

Well.. okay.. this is not a genuine, real pizza. It is a shortcut pizza I made using just the plain wholemeal bread. But this is good enough for tea on a lazy Sunday at home and better than just a cup of coffee & biscuit.

Here's how I did it:

1. Bread (I use wholemeal)
2. Diced onion
3. Raisins (soak them in hot water for about 5 mins to prevent it from turning dry from the baking)
4. Sundried tomatoes (cut into strips)
5. Grated cheddar cheese
6. Pepper to taste

1. Toast the bread in oven for about 2-3 mins on 150 degrees.
2. Remove bread from oven and start to decorate it with the onions, raisins, sundried tomatoes, sprinkle with some pepper and top with cheese.
3. Drizzle the toppings with a little bit of olive oil or melted butter. I used olive oil *optional
3. Return them to the oven and bake for another 2-3 mins or until the cheese turn golden brown.



DH said it is good and can beat Pizza Hut! :)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Be Still And Know He is God

11 March 2011 marks yet another shocking episode act of God and this time, it slams Japan. 8.9 on the Richter scale, fifth-largest earthquake in the world since 1900 and proving how fragile and vulnerable we can be. And No matter how rich and sophisticated a country is, no one and no Einstein on earth can predict God's plan, let alone, to fight it and prepare us for it. But one thing is for sure, we can overcome the effect of the catastrophe with faith and with a humble heart.

When tsunami hit India and Aceh Indonesia badly in 2004, it all felt like end of the world to many. Loss of countless lives of loved ones and homes. But with God's grace, they stood up and recovered. The unexpected event also taught many experts in the world to extend their research and the people to accept that tsunamis can go anywhere at all. There IS a silver lining in every cloud after all. Out of the mourning and all, it is heartwarming to see every country sending in their rescue team to assist. Disasters do bring the world together, don't they?

Keeping Japan & those affected in prayers and may God's mercy be with them. May the people of Japan stay strong.

Closing this post with this beautiful song, Be Still & Know by Don Moen.

Be Still & Know (by Don Moen)

Hide me now, Under Your wings
Cover me, Within Your mighty hand

When the oceans rise and the thunders roar
I Will soar with You above the storm
Father You are King
Over the flood
And I will be still and know You are God

Find rest my soul, In Christ alone
Know His power, In quietness and trust

Be still and know, that I am God

I am the God, That healeth thee

8.9 earthquake wreaks havoc in Sendai, Japan.
*picture sourced from google search
Homes burn in Natori City after 8.9 earthquake and resulting tsunami
*picture sourced from google search

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The More The Merrier!

If Isabelle is happy to have playdates, I am happier because I have lunch company and it is not just another routine monotonous day at home! The best thing is I don't have to yawn through Mickey Mouse Clubhouse show! :)

Lyn came over with her 2 handsome princes. I made simple lunch for us, rice with chicken in oyster sauce and blanched broccoli. Lyn brought the glorious RT's strawberry and mango mousse cake for dessert.

It took only a while for Isabelle to warm up to Manfred and Jude. And Isabelle can remember Jude from their last date, she was almost chanting 'Jude' when we greet them at the carpark and also after they left. :) How sweet.

Some very funny stuff took place through out the fun session here. While the mummies chat, Manfred seems to be quite intrigued in our conversation and even mimic some of our expression and words. And Manfred tried to do the mat rempit stunt and fell off the bike, knocking the back of his head against a chair behind him. Ouch!!!

Jude was so adorable, mimics almost anything funny that Manfred does. Hehe!

It was just fun to see them play, talk, reacts and even cry :)

Pretty and delicious mango mousse cake

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Our Weekend

Weekend... can't get enough of it!

What did you do over the weekend?

As usual, DH & I stayed up extra late to catch up on movies on Friday & Saturday night. A luxury for us as we don't get to that on weekdays. Managed to finish 'Little Fockers'. Great & sensible comedy. I miss watching movies in theater! But again, it is the company that matters, not the ambience.

On Saturday evening, we attended a friend's son's 2nd birthday party. Isabelle had a time of her life playing to her content with Aarica and Mikhail. For a kid's birthday party, you would expect the party to be filled with kids but you would be disappointed because there were only 3 of them. The rest were adults which explains why there were more food & drinks appropriate for adults than kids! Wine, vodka and rosé. All that sound like music to me!

While the daddies catch up on their manly gossip (and I wonder what they gossiped about), the mummies and ladies had a mini party by themselves. Feasted on the beverages and food and shared about each other's life, culture because we have everyone coming from different countries and GOSSIPS (what is party without it)! There were Raksha an Australian Indian, Diane the very happening Vietnamese American married to a local, Ching An & Louise both Taiwanese and yours truly, the pure Malaysian Chinese. Talk about 1Malaysia... this is even better!

Good times usually fly by very quickly. Isabelle happily said goodbye to us (and not to the host & family) when we told her we had to call it a day! But she was a very cooperative little girl, after a little coaxing, we had her out of the house with no fuss at all.

I am still waiting for pictures from Raksha's camera as I totally forgot to bring mine along because we left home in a hurry. So for now, I only have these 2 very cute picture of the 3 little angels to share with you.

With Mikhail, the birthday boy

From left: Mikhail, Aarica & my little sweetheart Isabelle

Picture taken during Sunday lunch at Jack's Place after service at church.
I love the blissful expression on Daddy and Isabelle's face.

That pretty much wrapped up the weekend. And I am counting moments to the next one in 5 days' time!

Wishing you a great and lovely week ahead =D

Friday, March 4, 2011

Who, Where, How & What's That

*picture sourced from google search

Phone ringing

Isabelle: Hello. Who… Who…

Objects dropped on the floor and rolled under the couch or table

Isabelle: Where?

Being bullied and we pretend to cry

Isabelle: How? How? Is okay (hands on our shoulder)

Walking through an alley in shopping centre and sees something interesting on the rack

Isabelle: What’s that?

Playdate 03.03.2011

In this picture(from left): Mikhail, Isabelle & Eva
Not in this picture : Angus and Erica

Picture taken from playdate at Vanessa's home yesterday. Mummies had lunch, ideas-info-exchanging and ranting session. The 5 kids had a party and a blast.

Result : Vanessa's home turned into a post-war zone, toys literally E V E R Y W H E R E.
Conclusion: Loads of fun, great way to kill time/boredom and kids fell asleep way faster during their nap time back at home after the session.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Birthday Card for Daddy

Happy Birthday DH! May God continue to shower you with His sweet blessings and health through out the year!

Left ~ Isabelle practicing with the brush
Right ~ End result !

Didn't know what to get DH for his birthday present this year and he has 'warned' me not to spend a cent to get him anything. I know he meant good but I do want him to have something. Thus, this idea came to mind. I have started to let Isabelle paint with water color earlier this week. So we made a card for Daddy! Isabelle's first 'handcraft'!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Discovery : For Your Home

If you are always on the lookout for ways to make your home spotless and at little cost, and even if you don't but you would love to start soon or want to start training your little troop to help out, check this out.

Happy cleaning!

*picture sourced from google search