Saturday, February 22, 2014

Money lessons - teaching my kids about money

For the first time, I took Brendan to the ATM. That was sometime last month, to deposit his money, of which, half of it was collected from his school under the govt incentive for school children. 

I do not give my kids pocket money to school most of the time as they prefer to bring food from home. They are times when I'd give them some money to buy things from school so they can have the feel of having money in their hands and be in control of the things that they buy.

Brendan is a very cost-saving boy. He is careful in spending unnecessarily. He used to pester me to bring him to the bank to bank in his money, even if it's just a few ringgit. I've since set a rule that if he needs to bank in money into his savings account, he will have to wait til he has at least a RM100 to make our trip to the nearest ATM machine more worthwhile.

I instill the importance of savings in my children when they were very young. It works most of the time. But Eryn doesn't seem to follow it consistently yet.

Here are my money tips which I found useful. It may not go well with some but it worked for me. 

1. No pampering even if they whine and cry and kick a big fuss out of it.
When Eryn was in preschool, she would kick a fuss about not having that pretty doll that she wanted when we were in the supermarket, or in shopping malls. When she started school, she would sometimes use her pocket money (if she was given) and buy junk food. Brendan, being the rather reasonable one will tell her that we have some snacks at home and that it is always more expensive and unhealthy to buy these stuffs in school. I’m glad they have now grow up to be wise and reasonable when it comes to spending. We do pamper them occasionally in our own ways like getting them what they’ve wanted – that pretty hairband, the  storybook they’ve been eyeing for, that nice pencil box, etc. At times, they may not get what they want, but a clear explanation and an alternative to what they want sets the message clear.

2. Learning from example. My kids have observed from us parents that we do not necessary have to have something just because someone is having it. They used to want everything their friends have – playstation, x-box, branded toys, tons of Barbie dolls or toy cars, Ipads and many more. Eryn still loves Barbie dolls and she treasure her 3 dolls very much which is not sitting in the dark. Brendan has stopped demanding for whatever IT gadgets and is so contented with just having the computer at home to play his online games. Once in a blue moon, we do surprise them with things which their friends get so easily. To them, they know that to have these things require certain hard work from the parents. After all, we are just average income-earners, and now that both of us are in our own business, things do get a little tough at times, and we have learn to live and be content with what we have.

3. Opening a kids savings account and setting goals.This is a must have for my children. I have three forms of savings account. One, which is the bank junior savings account which is for their long term savings plan. Two, is their piggy bank which they can take up to buy anything they might like with our approval (so far they have not used it except for losing a book in school). The last one is a wallet for each of them to keep their money for school pocket money. You may not believe this, but my kids only ask for RM1 for pocket money, that is if they need it. And in a month, I have never ever given them more than RM5, all because they never need it. I do set aside a certain amount which I’ll bank into their savings account for being so prudent, and without their knowledge. They each have a goal in wanting to buy something within a certain time frame. So far, they have not decided to use it yet.

4. Reward and wages. “You need to work for It”. Occasionally,my  kids do get rewarded in things that they do. And these rewards may or may not come in monetary form. It can be a simple holiday trip which most people take for granted. My kids know that a trip is an extremely rewarding thing they would ever have. An outing to my kids favourite steamboat barbeque buffet is much appreciated. As we do not eat out in expensive places most of the time, things like this tend to make them more appreciative and not take things for granted. Think about it. Look at some children around you when you go to a restaurant.. It may be a normal outing for some, it may be a privilege for some.

5.The power of compounding. MY kids know that there is such a thing as inflation and the power of compounding. Well, not so much on Eryn but Brendan understands the power of compounding. The earlier you save, the more you earn. The more you save, the higher your savings would get in later years. They don’t know how exactly it works but let’s just say that it is through our live experiences and observations that my kids learn from.

I encourage my children to save. I help them to set goals and do up a simple dreamboard. I bring them outside and enjoy nature – hiking, cycling, evening walk. And in the midst of these activities, there are things I can observe from their characters. It also get them thinking on issues on life.

There are beauty in imperfections.

Finally! Finished watching The Heirs. All the casts are so good-looking. And I wonder how many of them undergone plastic surgery? Love the pairing of Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye, two of my favourite Korean casts.

My girl watched a few episodes with me and asked why are all these people so handsome and beautiful? 

I remember she once came home from school and told me that she didn’t like her big nose. Obviously someone must have pointed it out at her. One of her friends, told Eryn that Eryn’s good in everything and she’s lousy. Another friend told her that Eryn is a nice, cheerful girl, while she is quiet and unknown.

My little girl has this special gift in telling people to accept their imperfections and to improve themselves where they can – in their studies, in their sports, in their writing.

My little girl has grown. Like most little girls, she loves all things pink and pretty. She knows that imperfection causes insecurity. I hope she continues to be an inspiration to others just like how she is now. 

She knows that some issues like being obese, not by birth, but by diet and lifestyle, is a flaw. Or that, having an ugly heart, is a flaw. Or being a bully, is a flaw. And it is because issues like this are based on the progress on one's lifestyle, upbringing, attitude, and character of that person. And that, is what real imperfections is all about.

I was born average-looking. And have been called by people that I have panda eyes, stick-out ears, serious-looking, bittergourd face, ugly eyebrows and I don’t even know what else. I never felt that I was imperfect until these were all pointed out to me.  But I’ve come to terms with my imperfections, acne scars, wrinkles and all, I think.

In one particular part-time job I took up, my superior at that time loved to pick on the way I dress. “You’re too old-fashioned”, “You should put on more make-up to meet clients”, “You need to be a little bit more dressy and wear some jeweleries”. I tried all that. But now, I wear what I want, without my accessories most of the time, unless I have important meetings or special functions. The only thing I still carry on is having my make-up on in meeting clients. 

Yes, I do feel imperfect still. And thus, a little make-up that brings colour to my face and certain clothes help ‘enhance’ my appearance when I meet bosses. Despite my imperfections, my friends are still my friends. My clients are much appreciative of what is in my brains than what is physical. I don’t think anyone has run away from me because of the way I look.

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.  
Be your own kind of beautiful. Afterall, we're all beautiful.

Memories to remember, treasure and to last a life time.

I kind of gave up pursuing in penning things down in this blog and sort of migrated to facebook instead.

As I looked back at all the posts in this blog and the photos (I'm a 'visual-person') I uploaded on facebook, I realised so many things have happened. Some do come back as flashbacks and some were forgotten.

I shall continue to pen adhoc messages here. And my main audience would be my children. Afterall, I don't think anyone would really pop by in here anymore. My children will grow up some day, with children of their own. And when the time comes, we parents will kick the bucket. And it is my wish and hope that this blog serves in bringing them comfort, smiles, love and memories to remember, treasure and to last a life time.

Friday, March 1, 2013

High fever that wouldn't go away

Approximately one and a half months ago, Brendan had to missed school for 3 days as he had extremely high fever at 39.9 degrees. We took him to see the dr who said that he didn't require any antibiotics and the fever should subside after a few days. We were given paracetamol which unfortunately didn't help very much.

The fever did go down for just a little while but would go up quickly again especially at night. Brendan was extremely weak and his body was extremely hot. He didn't have an appetite for days. He couldn't even finish a cup of water. I had to keep reminding him to drink sips and sips of water every now and then.

I wanted to try the egg white and flour rub down but decided to send him to see a lady who specialised in 猪毛   (“zhu mao tan” or also known as Chinese typhoid fever or demam kepialu in malay) in Seri Kembangan on the 4th day, upon recommendation by a friend.

She did a quick check on Brendan and asked him to lie down while she rub a watery mixture in red on his chest. Within seconds, there were tiny little hair on his chest. She proceeded to pass us a few packets of some powdery medicine to be taken every 4 hours for the next 2 days plus a packet of clear water. It was all done in a jiffy. There were no description of the herbs or the water which I later found out to be some sort of cooling water.  She didn't even confirmed it to be 猪毛 丹. So, to this date, I'm still not sure whether it was 猪毛 丹 or "atapchee" fever.

This traditional chinese remedy believes that the appearance of the harsh looking hair on the body is the relieving of body heat. If not treated, it can lead to death.

She passed us a small piece of paper which states "Diet: rice, egg, apple, sweet potato, pork, chicken, fish. No Bath for 2 days. Diet for 4 days". I thought that was the diet Brendan was supposed to be taking until my friend who recommended me this lady said that those are the food to avoid.

His fever did subsided 2 days after that lady's treatment. It was a big scare for us as his fever was so high and he couldn't even walk.

Over the CNY holidays, I had the privilege to consult a very experienced sifu in treatin猪毛 丹, shingles, snakebites and centipede bites. He taught us how to identify whether it is  猪毛 丹and how to treat it.

Here's the video taken. Hopefully this helps anyone who is looking for any sort of info on this. Kindly excuse our bad Chinese in the video.

Contact of Sifu Tan :

Tan Eng Huat
013-7046165 (updated : 011-1077 6165)
21, Jalan Muhibbah, 
Taman Kerjasama, 
86000 Kluang, Johor.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Disappearing act. Peeling garlic act.

Yeap, I've disappeared for a while. I've kind of migrated to FB for most of my updates where I can limit my posts to selected group of friends. Over the Chinese New Year break, I met a friend who asked why I stopped "writing".

To begin with, I don't write. The few "writing" episodes in the newspaper many years ago was by chance. It was just articles I submitted just for the fun of it. I don't have the intention to keep on blogging. It started basically as my personal mission to keep memories in writing where I can reflect back on the things that have happened, to give memories to my children on a (not-so-private) journal in my journey on motherhood and my personal rants in life. 

Concentrating hard to peel garlic
I showed my children, who can now read, this blog, and they kind of enjoyed reading some of the 'stories'. This has also prompted them to write their own diary everyday. As Brendan says, "I also want to keep track of the things I do so that when I am big one day, I can look back at what I did as a child".

Ok, children, you will know some personal stories which I keep in a private journal. You can also continue coming back in here anytime to read my journey, and your baby/childhood stories which will be kept in limited updates. 

My lovely children, found it entertaining to read interesting stories of themselves as babies. 

Anyway, Brendan caught me by surprised when he suddenly sat down at the kitchen table last week to help me peel garlics. Lots and lots of it. Motherhood does springs its surprises at times. After half an hour, he decided to call it quits, finding it too tiring to continue any further. He says, "This is hard work."

Monday, September 24, 2012

Silhouette in the middle of the night

At around 2:00am this morning, I awoke to the sound of thunder. It was raining heavily and the wind was howling outside the room window. I got up to close the windows in all the rooms and went back to bed. 

As I drifted back to sleep, a bright strike of lighting flashed in the sky followed by a deafening sound of thunder and car alarms ringing through the air. The power tripped.

And then, I saw a silhouette. I wasn't wearing my spectacles and was wondering if my eyes were playing tricks on me. I glared hard. I notice it's a human-like shadow on the wall, swaying very gently. My heart was beating faster. I couldn't tell if there was someone standing outside the window or if something is in the room.

I lay still for a while, observing the shadow and was wondering whether I should jump out of bed or stay still or start screaming. I tried to remember whether my golf stick was beside my bed.

Hubby was snoring beside me and I didn't dare to turn. I quickly calm myself down and said a  quick prayer. I decided to just sit up straight in bed and to confront my fears.

It was Eryn, standing by the foot of my bed, staring at me. She gave me a fright. She said in a hushed tone that her back ached. I knew it was just an excuse and could have been frightened by the sound of thunder. I gave her a back rub and then she went back to bed.

Hubby got up and went downstairs to check on the circuit box. I went back to bed and closed my eyes. Once again, I had a big fright when there was this face right in front of me, with eyes wide open and whispering in a slow voice in Mandarin saying that the power has tripped. That was Brendan, speaking slowly and whispering so as not to fighten me. Sigh!

This kind of experience is definitely not for the faint-hearted. I remember the older folks used to have a chinese saying : "frightened by a human being can cause a fright to death where else frightened by a ghost can still be overcomed".

This is not the first time that Eryn has given me such fright. She has always stood there quietly and very straight and looked at me, always careful not to disturb me - while I'm cooking, while I'm in the toilet or while I'm watching TV or working on my pc at night. 

She's not always like that though. She likes to come up to me and snuggle and hug me but cooking time and toilet time are a big no-no. When it's bed time, she's not to come downstairs too. So, she'll just stand still and look. 

During such times, when I noticed a silhouette, I would normally turned very quickly, and there stood Eryn, looking at me and then breaking out in a wide grin. 

What would you do if you encounter a silhouette in your room?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sperms and Eggs (part II)

Here's the 'sequel' to my earlier post titled "Of sperms, eggs and balls", the kids know how fertilisation occurs but has never gotten down to the details of where sperms actually come from.

My little 7 y.o. Eryn came up to me after dinner and said she's got a very interesting story to tell me. So, I sat with her and she took out her kids' magazine, 小星星  or Bintang SinChew, and showed me this page below.

She then went on to tell her story which goes like this :

"These are all the sperms and the fastest and strongest sperm will go to the egg in your body 

and make a baby. Just like how the sperm, which was daddy, and the egg, which is inside your body, 
meet and made me. 

"The little egg baby will go inside your womb and slowly grow into a real baby and when the baby is ready
to come out, it will come out from this part (pointing to the vagina in the picture)".

I then proceeded to ask her, "Where did the sperm come from?"

She answered like a girl full of wisdom, "The sperm is quite invisible. It is very tiny, and you can't see it. 
It's like the size of kutu (lice). Wait, it's more like the size of germs because you can still see kutu. This
sperm will go down your mouth and inside your tummy to find the egg."

I almost chocked on my guava hearing that! Gosh! Trying to be smart indeed. he he he....

She continued, "And only married people can have babies."

Earlier this year, Brendan's version of where sperms come from is from kukubird and two balls.

I wonder what new versions I'm going to hear.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

"Kari Ikan Tongkol" to go with Nasi Dagang

Yummy Yummy!

From my earlier post on how to cook nasi dagang, here is the recipe for 'kari ikan tongkol' (Kelantanese style fish curry). I'm not sure what 'ikan tongkol' is called in English. I think it's some kind of a Malaysian tuna?

Well, we eat rather heathily on weekdays as I cook almost everyday, and we definitely do not consume much salt, sugar, santan, oil and stuffs that contribute to the high level of diabesity and overweight problems that is increasing in our country. So, do take it easy with the curry since it's generously laden with santan (coconut milk). I think you may opt to use evaporated milk or use less santan, but the taste be slightly less fragrant.

This is an occasional treat where we usually invite some friends over to indulge in this yummilicious meal.

Here's sharing with you our recipe. We prefer ours with more gravy. Do note that we do use any specific measurements as every ingredients are based on estimation according to our preference.

 Our 'Kari Ikan Tongkol' recipe for approximately 10-12 pax :

Ingredients A :
~ one big bowl of shallots (approximately 4-5 handful)
~ a quarter big bowl of garlic (approximately 1-2 handful)
~ 4-5 stalks of serai (lemongrass) - more if you like the fragrance

Ingredients B :

~ 5 to 6 medium sized 'ikan tongkol' or 'tenggiri' (Malaysian tuna?)
~ santan (coconut milk) from one coconut
~ one/two cucumber (cut in big pieces)
~ long beans (cut in thumbsized length)
~ 5-6 fresh red chillies or green chillies (the light green type) - we like to have more of it
~ a few cili padi (bird's eye chillies) - if desired
~ cili giling (chilli paste, comes in a container and is easily available in the market)
~ a few pieces of asam keping or asam gelugor  (dried tamarind skin),
~ fish curry powder (we prefer Baba's brand)
~ lengkuas, thumbsize (1 to 2) (galangal)~ 2 to 3 big bowls of water
~ salt and sugar to taste

Method :

( Pre-cooking steps ) :

1) Boiled a big bowl of water in a pot with 2-3 pieces of asam keping (dried tamarind skin) for approximately 20 minutes. Turn on low fire and add in the fish. Turn off fire when fish is halfway cooked. Leave the fish in the water and let it cool totally. Cover pot and let the fish 'soaked' in the asam water overnight in the fridge. This is to ensure that the fish would have a slight sourish tangy taste. Alternatively, you may soak it for a few hours prior to cooking.

2) A few hours before cooking, do the same for the cucumber and long beans. Boil half a big bowl of water with 1-2 pieces of asam keping. Turn off the fire and add in the vegetables.
Leave the vegetables in the water for approximately one hour. You may pour away the water afrer it's cooled down.

( Cooking steps ) :

1)  Heat up oil. Lightly fry two tbsp-ful of the chilli paste.
2)  Add in ingredients (A), stire and fry over medium heat till fragrant.
3)  Add in 2-3 tbsp of fish curry powder and continue frying over medium-low heat. Be careful not to burn.
4)  Add in the bowls of water and let it boil.
5)  Add in the fresh chillies and one or two more asam keping (to your preference)
6) Add in all the fish and let it simmer on medium heat and then to low heat.
7)  Add in the asam fish water (tamarind water) from the pot that was used to 'soak' in the fish.
      Simmer on low fire for around 20 minutes or so for the flavour to come out.
8)  Add in approximately 2 tsp of salt and 1 tbsp of sugar, to your preference.
9)  Gradually pour in the coconut milk and simmer on low heat for around 5 minutes.
10) Turn off fire. Add vegetables from the pre-cooking steps above into the curry before serving.
      (I prefer to keep my vegetables separated so that it's easier to scoop out).

As mentioned in my earlier post, 'kari ikan tongkol' goes well with nasi dagang which is a well known dish in the states of Kelantan and Terengganu and southern Thai, accompanied by 'acar' (pickled vegetables), hard boiled eggs, salted fish, 'sambal belacan' (a type of chilli shrimp paste) and keropok.

I've made a video here for your perusal. Happy Cooking!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Nasi Dagang recipe


Our kitchen is our mini bonding time for DH and I on some weekends when we undertake the task of cooking together. I cook for the family on weekdays and on weekends, DH would be the one who normally does the cooking. Occasionally, when the mood sets in, he'll go on a huge marketing spree and we'll then decide at the very last minute to call a few friends over.

Since we do not have a maid, our day starts right from the early morning till the evening, starting with the marketing, cleaning, chopping, slicing, cooking and washing the dishes. The rice will be soaked the night before. The kids love these cooking extravaganza weekends cos it means that they can watch unlimited cartoons or play games online while we toiled in the kitchen :-)
DH is a kelantanese and learnt this dish with recipe taken from the web, and improvised according to what we want. It's actually easy to cook, minus the time consuming processes in the preparation. With such a famous dish in the east coast, it would be a shame for those from the area who cooks but do not know how to cook this dish. Really! It's that easy!

A quick introduction on nasi dagang. It is a well known east coast of Malaysia and southern Thai dish, commonly eaten with 'kari ikan tongkol' (a type of Kelantanese style fish curry), accompanied by 'acar' (pickled vegetables), hard boiled eggs, salted fish, keropok and 'sambal belacan' (a type of chilli shrimp paste).

You can find the 'kari ikan tongkol' recipe in the next post.

'nasi dagang' and 'kari ikan tongkol'
The rice itself is rather reddish brown in colour and is like glutinuous rice. You may opt to use 'beras merah' (red rice) mixed with 'beras pulut' (glutinuous rice) as it can be quite hard to obtain it in KL area.

Below here is our version. Most of the ingredients here are just 'agak-agak' (based on estimation) on the ingredients used. You may improvise it according to your taste buds.

shallots, ginger and 'halba' (fenugreek seeds)

Nasi Dagang recipe for 8-10 pax :
Ingredients :

~ 1 kg beras nasi dagang (nasi dagang rice, or you may substitute it with a mixture of red rice and glutinuous rice)
~ Santan (coconut milk) from two coconut (you may opt to use lesser santan if you find it too 'lemak', or too rich)
~ one rice bowl full of peeled and chopped shallots
~ one knob of ginger, sliced and shredded (approximately palm size in length)
~ 1.5-2 tbsp biji halba (fenugreek seeds)
~ sugar to taste

Method :

1)  Soak the nasi dagang rice overnight in water to soften it.
2)  Discard water the next day and rinse rice. Heat up steamer.
     Place netting in the steamer and place the rice on top of the netting.
     (You may get this netting in sundry shops. We got our cotton netting from a fabric shop)
3)  Steam rice for 20 minutes in steamer.
4a) Remove rice and scoop them out into a huge clean pot.
      Add in some santan (approximately half).
      Stir well to mix the rice evenly with the santan.
4b) Scoop rice back into the steamer and steam rice for another 20 minutes.
5)  Remove rice once again and scoop them out into the earlier pot.
     Add in more santan (approximately one, depending on absorption)  
     to stir and blend in together with the rice. This will ensure that the rice absorb the santan)
5b) Once again, scoop rice back into the steamer and steam rice for another 5-10 minutes.
6)  Remove rice for the third and final time and scoop them out into the other pot.
     Pour in remaining santan. Add in shallots, ginger, halba and a little sugar. Stir evenly.
7)  Scoop rice back into the steamer and steam rice for approximately 5 minutes.
     Turn off fire after that and serve rice warm with the curry.

Appended below is a video for your reference on the steaming method of nasi dagang.

Do try it. You'll love it!  :-)

Kids outing to KLCC Park and Istana Negara

It was Merdeka Day (Independence Day) last Friday. Since it was a public holiday and the kids' little cousin, Jas, came visiting, we decided to take them out for a short outing to the KLCC Park just before Jas leaves KL in that same afternoon.

We would have expected to see lots of foreign workers hanging out there but were surprised to see that the park was rather empty at 10:30am. It started getting rather crowded about half an hour later. So, we had to drag the kids out from the pool in less than an hour.

Merdeka! Merdeka! Merdeka!

Kids lying down by the pool
While driving towards Federal Highway, we decided to just make a quick stop to Istana Negara as the kids have not been there. I have to admit that I've never been to the guard post nor the main gate outside Istana Negara before. So, was rather surprise to see that the place were opened to the public.  We didn't know this prior to this visit.

It was a lovely place surrounded with lots of greeneries and a nice garden with a pond. Unfortunately, what was once a beautiful garden and nursery, was a big let down with unkept surroundings. The field was pretty well kept though, and the grass were green and trimmed.

Overall, it was a good experience for us all as it was our first time visiting Istana Negara.
Inside the Istana Negara grounds near the entrance

Tiled road leading up to the main halls

Beautiful landscaping garden with a water fountain feature in the middle of the pond

Not a pretty sight : stagnant water in a boat by the pond

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Cherating Turtle Sanctuary and Information Centre

Last Friday, we went to Kuantan for our group agency’s family camp for a three days and two nights stay.

Part of our itinerary was a visit to the Cherating Turtle Sanctuary and Information Centre on that Friday afternoon.

Kids at the entrance to the Cherating Turtle Sanctuary and Information Centre.

The Cherating Turtle Sanctuary is managed by the Department of Fisheries Malaysia alongside the State Government of Pahang. Apparently,  it was opened to the public sometime in mid 1998.

As we enter the centre, we went straight to the three ponds at the centre where there are turtles and terrapins swimming in the pond. From here, we moved on to a room with a video playback on the efforts in the turtles conservation programme in protecting the turtles from getting extinct.

We were earlier been told that there were baby turtles ready to be released into the sea. We had to prebook the number of turtles we required a few days earlier as release of the baby turtles are limited. A payment of RM5 per turtle hatchling is to be paid which is also treated as part of a donation towards the conservation programme.

The kids were extremely excited to know that there are baby green turtles ready to be released to sea.

After the video presentation, we headed outside to get ready for the turtles release. Just beside the centre, there is a turtle hatchery area where turtle rangers transfer turtle eggs laid by the turtle from the beach to the hatchery to protect from any harm.

This would ensure that the turtle hatchlings will hatch safely, after which, it will need to be released to the huge ocean out there.

Turtle Hatchery

We were told by the guide that the baby turtles from this beach will normally come back to lay their eggs when their time is due.

Admission is free and the visiting hours are from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm with an hour lunch break from 1:00pm to 2:00pm/ On Fridays, there is a 3 hours break for lunch and prayers from 12 noon to 3:00pm. The Sanctuary is closed on Mondays.

You may need to call and verify if you want to participate in the release for the baby turtles or watching turtles laying eggs at night.

Cherating Turtle Sanctuary Address:
Turtle Sanctuary & Information Center
26050 Balok, Cherating, Kuantan, Pahang.
Contact No. :
(6) 09-581 9087

baby green turtles in a box, ready for release

kids taking great care and being gentle with their hatchlings

Brendan's extremely careful with his baby green turtle

Up close with a baby green turtle

Eryn gently releasing her baby green turtle on the sand
A baby turtle making its way to the sea

wriggling their way through the rough surface on the sand
Love our turtles.

Brendan at the beach

Friday, August 10, 2012

Cup Bangle?

On school days, my mornings are the routine of waking the kids up, showering them, preparing breakfast for kids, wash their water tumbler, ensuring their bags are properly packed, washing the dishes and then sending them to school. In-between, there's the constant nagging to get them to hurry up cos they like to take their own sweet time, dilly-dallying here and there.

Anyway, this morning. I did the usual routine, and then this happened!!

While I was washing this particular glass, the bottom just broke and in a split second just before I realised the bottom was broken, I pulled my hand back in and had various cuts all over my right hand, plus one on my left hand too. The one on the second finger on my right hand is really deep. I put on soap and tried to pull my hand out gently. There were blood all over the sink.

The kids started screaming! "No! Mummy! No! Don't do that!"

Sigh! Had to get Brendan to bring the hammer out. Wrapped my hand in towel and smashed the cup away.

 I can feel my whole hand throbbing with pain right now.

Damn!! A domestic goddess I'm not! Not domesticated, and definitely not a goddess. So, you see, my days are NOT filled with pleasant mornings all the time.

I don't know what is more comforting. Brendan taking this photo for remembrance, or Eryn saying "Mummy, don't die! Who is going to take care of us?!" or the kids suddenly became so grown up and concern and started taking their bags and stood at the door without me having to open my mouth.

Oh well, just another day in paradise........not!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Tesco, Oh Tesco!! How disgusting can you be?

Aaarrrrggghh!! This is totally disgusting! Damn!! I just can't believe that I did not learn my lesson, and I'll tell you why.

I shop in Tesco a lot mostly for the dry goods and household items. I don’t normally buy meat products or fish from any hypermarkets or supermarkets as they just don't look as fresh as the ones in the morning market. People tell me that NHK (I first heard of it last week), Cold Storage and Jaya are the better supermarkets.
Occasionally, the meat section in these "super hyper markets" tend to emit some sort of nauseating smell. I do get the chilled Australian sliced beef to make pizza once in a blue moon, provided I "think" they look fresh and does not smell. We take more fish and vegetables most of the time and the morning market supply really fresh ones though they may be a little pricey as compared to the supermarkets.
Anyway, this morning, I was in Tesco Puchong doing some grocery shopping. As I passed the fresh meat section, I  thought I could make do with the packed  chicken fillet in Tesco after noticing that it was packed today (based on the label). Since it's a weekday and it's a rush for me, I didn't want to make a detour to the pasar and besides, it's too late to go to the morning market.
Upon reaching home, I proceeded to remove the fillet from the pack to rinse and was extremely shock to see a slightly harden piece of fillet  with greenish parts on it. Eeeww!!
I immediately drove back to Tesco Puchong to return it and filed a complaint to the customer service girl at the front counter. Apparently, one lady whom I spoke to, said that this is rather normal. Yet, the photo that I showed her made her gasped in disbelief.
Another lady staff of Tesco (in apron) said that this could be packed by a newcomer. While a third lady staff (in office clothings) mentioned that the meat was from a supplier and not packed by them. The fourth person that came by was a guy by the name of Din, who was apparently in charge of the “fresh food” area for day, indicated they will give me a refund.
Gosh! I’m not concern about the refund!! I drove all the way back to Tesco Puchong, just to show this and file my complaint. It took off some of my time and petrol, so that little refund is not my concern. Don’t they have any assurance or QC check on your supply? This is a shame. Are the fresh food even fit for human consumption?!!
I don't care if this meat was packed in Tesco, or from a supplier. They seriously need to look into this.
With the rising rate of health problems due to food and environment, this kind of greenish meat will definitely make your life shorten. Eewww!!!!! Horrible!! Disgusting!! I'm feel sick just talking about this...
I feel like puking...

Look at the date! It's supposed to be freshly packed this morning!!

If you read my first sentence above, I mentioned "I did not learn my lesson". Why? Well, this is because I just can't trust these hyper or super thingy. Below here is a pack of Tesco brand honey breakfast cereal which I bought in December last year. My first and my last time buying that stupid "cicak cereal". NEVER EVER buy Tesco brand food products. Just stick to Nestle or Kellogg's and you'll not get it bad.

I only realised that dried and shrivelled lizard after the kids ate a portion of it. Again, I called to file a personal complaint. I cannot tahan. This time must make it public. I even drove all the way to return it back, not even bothered to get back my refund. To date, I don't even get any assurance from them.

Spot the lizard!! No price for getting it correct.

This fella is not enjoying his cereal bath. It's dead. Period. And it's found in my cereal!!

Note to self : Stick to my standard household goods, biscuits and vege and only when it's fresh. No meat! No cicak cereal or in-house brand food products.


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