Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pandan Idol

The 3 of us were relaxing on the couch watching American Idol on a Sunday evening.

During the commercial break, Nyla suggested that she audition infront of her own Es-mon And Ka-ra.
We were more than pleased to do so. Duh! Free entertainment leh!
Nyla sang Daniel Powter's Bad Day.
During the audition, the husband and I squeezed each other's hands real hard because seeing Nyla E belt out that song with so much gusto was painfully funny.

Judge Ka-ra then asked if Nyla E could do the audition once more, telling her that it's toooo good.
(Actual fact, I wanted to snap pictures! Kesian Nyla E kena sabo!)
Sorry about the very poor quality of the pictures though because this Nyla E could not keep still and her mummy Nura J's hands were shaking!
Tak boleh control la! Kelakar sesangat-sangatnya!
Audition time
Singing in front of Pandan Idol Judge Es-mon
Golden ticket for you!
Yipee! I am going to Hollllyywwwooood!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Diana 'Lux'

The best friend, Nurdiana Laksa-Skare called me while I was conducting tuition and I told her to call me again 4 hours later, which she did. :)

I miss you babe.

That's us with 2 of our buddies back in YISS.
Best times ever.

Yes, my hair was short cos Nadya Hutagalung was my idol then.
She's pretty. I also want to be pretty. She cut her hair short. I copy lor.
My mom didn't talk to me for a few days because I didn't consult her about cutting my hair.
My dad commented,'Now I have 3 sons.'
Whatever.
Kononnya rebellious.
Anyway, I doubt I'll be cutting my hair short because my mom and mom in law prefer me with long locks.


Diana, when she just gave birth.

Because we lived only 5 minutes away, Nyla and I would visit her daily.
Nyla was abit bothered that Diana still had a tummy after she gave birth.
She thinks the tummy will immediately flatten the moment baby gets out. Oh how we wish!

Nyla: Aunty Diana, you need to go back to the hospital.
Diana: Why?
Nyla: I think you need to give birth again. There's another baby inside.

Remember the above conversation babe? Lepak!

Fast forward a few months...
The dreaded day arrived when I had to send her off at the airport because Diana decided to follow her husband, a Norwegian, back to his homeland.


I was, literally, crying on her shoulders.


Well, we chatted just now and she's coming back in September, insyallah!



So babe, when that wonderful day arrives, let's go for the Indian Rojak at West Coast k! I pwomise!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

BROTHERS

I know the above is the title of a newly-released movie but this is not going to be a movie review, guys.
Today, I want to blog about my own brothers.

My elder brother, Bah.


My younger brother, Jam. (pronounced as 'jam' jump, not strawberry 'jam'.Hah!)


Oh, they were such pains in my a#%@ when us siblings were 'united' under one same roof.



Bah was my tuition teacher (right up to when I was in JC!) and my discipline master.
I still remembered this one incident very vividly.

I was 14 years old and my mom was away on her Haj pilgrimage. Freeeeeedommmmm!

I took the opportunity not to make my bed or do any kind of household duties and Bah was pissed, big time.
My room was really messy. Clothes were strewn everywhere. Maklomlah, teenagers kan perpetually in a confused state. One moment, I was dressed like an Ah Lian (think cushiony Sonia Rykiel bags!) and the next moment, a skater girl (think big baggy pants!)
Bah nagged at me incessantly. Booo ya! Like I care!
Then one (NOT) fine day, when I returned home from school, I had difficulty entering my bedroom.
Strange, I thought, because the door wasn't locked. I pushed the door with all my might and squeezed my skinny self in between the tiny gap.

To my horror, a heeeeyuugggeee mountain of clothes greeted me. I couldn't even see my bed. Bah then popped his head in between that tiny gap. (I so felt like slamming the door and break his neck.)
He smiled and said sarcastically,'Since you love mess, might as well be a real big mess. Don't need to thank me. Anyway, it's much easier to select your clothes rather than you having to search for them in the wardrobe. Happy digging in!'

He actually emptied my wardrobe to teach me a lesson.
I bawled my eyes out and started 'work' immediately. Sat cross legged and folded clothes throughout the night. And yes, I was also cursing him with whatever expletive words my angry self could come up with. But of course, not in front of him ah! Wait, he flying kick my face how?!
Such a sad scene, I tell ya. I felt like Cinderella.

My room was spick and span the next morning.
So yeah, that's my steely brother for you.



My younger brother, Jam, was my playmate at home since our age difference is just 3 years.
Because we are always in each others' faces, there were times we would get very irritated and rained punches on each other mercilessly, each of us very determined to inflict as much pain on the other party as possible! Besides that, this one has a kind heart. Except for the times when he is pms-ing.

Jam took really good care of me when I was pregnant with Nyla. Whenever he saw me lie down on the couch, he would ask,'Oi, you want me to massage your feet or not?' Wooohoooo!

So when I was pregnant, everytime I heard the door, I would hope and pray it was my brother. Sorry ya hubs! Jam would massage my feet religiously almost every night.
Jam was also the first one to spot Nyla's first kick. I was feeling really hot, so I just let my tight tummy hang loose that particular afternoon after a long day in school, during those hectic NIE days. When he saw my tummy roll, he panicked and screamed, 'Motheeerrrrrr! Sis is giving birth!!!!!!!!!!!!!'

Come on Jam, I was only 4 months pregnant man. Sorry, that freaked you out big time! Haha! So from that day onwards, he would always say,'If you want me to massage, you cover your belly.'

The services stopped right after I gave birth. Damn!


Today, like how all uncles are to their nieces and nephews, my brothers are wonderful to Nyla.
My Bah, her uncle Bud, would buy her soft toys and pink stuff whenever he returns from his overseas business trips.



Jam, her Uncle Jambi, is exceptionally close to Nyla because he will frequently be at home when we visit my mom. Nyla is very manja with him.



Both of them enjoy their conversations with each other.


Nyla: Uncle Jambi, Tok Mommy gave birth to Uncle Bud first. My mommy, second and you are third. (Way to go with the ordinal numbers, Nyla!)
Jam:Yes, you're right!
Nyla: I really pity you, Uncle Jambi. So poor thing, you....(gently stroking his hair)
Jam: Why?
Nyla: Uncle Jambi, you're the LAST!
Jam: *Speechless*


This is random but kids always think that being last is negative. Well Nyla, in the family dynamics, being the last one, the bongsu, has got to be the best thing ever! When you have new siblings insyallah!
You will have a new perception of the word 'last' sweetie. Hehe!



Anyway back to my brothers, I love the both of you. Very much.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Lifelong Learner

Recently, I have discovered that a healthy dose of audacity and a willingness to take chances have served me well.
I am definitely one who is willing to take chances but I need to be responsible and make sure that they are not reckless ones.

Why?
Because, my line of work involves education and in turn, the future of the young ones.


Here, I would like to sincerely apologise from the very bottom of my heart for turning down the requests of you concerned parents who would like me to tutor your children.
Yes, I am specialised in primary education.
However based on my past teaching experience, I am most confident and capable in teaching the upper primary children.
(But who knows, in the near future, I might be able to rope in my awesome teacher-kakis to teach the lower primary levels 1,2 and 3.)


For now, Bottoms Up! which was initially targeted atP5/P6 children taking English and Mathematics at Foundation level, it has 'spread its wings' after much persuasion from parents through the many email exchanges and phonecalls. There are now upper primary children who take Standard English and Mathematics joining my tuition classes. Welcome aboard the newly-modified ship, fellow Bottoms Uppers!


So, currently, I am tutoring P4, P5, P6 pupils and lo and behold, Sec 1 N(A) and Sec 1 N(T) students.
Biar Betik Nura?! Sec 1?


The bulk of my Sec 1 tutees were past year's batch. I have been lucky because I have a very positive parent-tutor relationship with the parents. To all you parent clients, thank you for the enjoyable interactions.
Anyway back to my Secondary One abang abangs and kakak kakaks....
It took me about a month to finally confirm to their parents that I will teach their teenagers this year.
In that one month, plenty of studying was done because I was not familiar with the Secondary 1 N(A) and N(T) syllabuses.

Even Nyla noticed and I remembered her asking, 'Mommy, are you doing homework? Who is your teacher?'

I personally feel that I should have strong content mastery so that I will be able to teach effectively. On top of that, I also had to create meaningful activities to teach 'free writing' and 'prime factorisation with index notation' since this batch was so used to fun and engaging lessons last year.

As an educator, I have to be that positive role model and commit myself to continual learning and improvement in everything I do. I always tell my tutees that we need to be 'lifelong learners'. Hence I need to practice what I preach. In this case, I have most certainly 'set the bar' higher when it comes to my own personal performance.

To be a successful person, I must be willing to learn and apply new concepts and that was what I did the past month, burning midnight oil every night, after putting Nyla to bed. Thanks to this study schedule, Nyla's bedtime now is 830pm, which has given me not only the rest of the night to study but to do my lesson plans with no interruption and guilt.

I am still learning. I am very much aware that I will never be a Miss-know-it-all but I will make education and continuous learning as one of my primary goals.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Top 10

I've seen my friends on facebook joining groups.
Some groups are really funny.
So hilarious because somehow, I can relate to them.
Here, I have shortlisted my top 10 groups.

HILARIOUS but TRUE!

1. When I was younger, I put my face close to the fan to hear my robot voice.
(LOL! Guilty as charged! I remembered doing this when I was younger. Only stopped when my hair got stuck in the fan on that one fateful night. *Shudders* Anyway, I discussed about this with Fara who joined this group and this was what she commented, 'Build confidence k, makes me feel sexy too, with wind blowing emotions.. after that my face feels tight due too much wind blowing at ma face.. :( those were my selengz days'...... WAHAHAHAH!)

2. I wish our school was full of hot people, like schools on TV.
(Ya lor.. How come on TV, the gals and lads in their high school look so hot one. Back when I was in YISS or JJC, the girls and lads so plump, sweaty and pimply one. Myself included. :S)

3. Going to Macdonalds for a salad roll is like going to a brothel for a hug.
(Who lah orders salad at MacD? Anyhow, please bring the cinnamon melts back....)

4. I hate it when you make plans...get excited... they never happen.
(Frust tonggeng right?)

5. Sometimes I put on a smiley face and pretend that I'm fine.
(This one is for Mr E. :P)

6. I hate when I can't sleep because I am thinking .
(Sometimes, I have a tendency to think too much, too deep. I need to slow down and relak jack a bit. I am still working on this.)

7. I wet my toothbrush before I put toothpaste on it.
(I do this every morning and night and it feels good to know that there are many more out there wetting their toothbrushes before they put their toothpaste!)

8. I hate laughing when I'm trying to be angry/serious.
(Especially when I am trying to discipline Nyla. Just last night, I was angry at her for not putting her scattered books back on the shelf. Nyla's brushing up on her Malay. She said,"Enggak bisa, buk. Enggak bisa reach.' Bahasa Melayu dong, Nyla. Bukan Bahasa Indonesia sih! Mommy ended up laughing.)

9. I walk into a room, I forget I went there, I walk out, I remember.
(Happens everytime.)

10. When my teacher is wrong, he/she says 'Im just testing you.'
(Argh! Who is the smartass who created this group?! Now I need to change my favourite line. Heee!)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Dear God...

Nyla will occasionally perform the Isyak prayers with us.
Esman and I also have asked her to always ask in prayer and encourage her to believe and have faith that she will receive what she has asked for.

So right after solat a few nights ago, with her hands cupped and palms up at chest level,
(I overheard/eavesdropped her and I controlled myself from bursting out in hysterical laughter)

Nyla prayed to dear God:
Ya Allah, please let my Mommy and Daddy buy me so many pink stuff.
Ya Allah, please let my Mommy let me eat so many sweets.
Ya Allah, please don't let my Mummy and Daddy make me sleep in my own room.

....and then she wiped her face with her little palms.

Esman and I have been discussing about letting the girl sleep in her own room and I think based on the third doa, somebody is getting very stressed.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

F&N

F for Farah.
N for Nura.
F for First (Lady)
N for New (Arrivals)
As always, the shoot was F(u)N!


Our so sweeeet Lynn working her magic.


With our new artistic director, Rowena.


The duo from First Lady who decide who wears what.


This time, I'm the chosen one to don the tudung. :)




And when the rest were distracted discussing about the lights, poses, outfits, us, F&N, also got distracted and turned into lunatics.


With the entertaining abang abangs.
Once the advert is out, tunggu apa lagi? Serbulah First Lady!

Monday, January 18, 2010

'Katy Perry'

Last night, Esman helped me dye my hair because I needed his help, especially with the back of my head.
I've never had it done at home but since I'm dye-ing the whole head black, I thought, sure cannot go wrong one la.
I'm sick of being a 'red-head'. The fact that I have dry hair, it really looked like it's toasted.

Why black?
I want to feeling feeling Katy Perry. She's so pretty. Heeee!
It is also a frugal choice to do it at home. Save duit beb!

Outcome:
1) No botched outcome despite the fact that I now look like I put black shoe polish on my head. And no, I do not look like Katy Perry at all. Hmmpf.
2) Esman and I are one (in our case, 2) of those people that is a constant disaster and I can’t tell you how many things we have ruined while trying to get the hair colour on my head. It almost became a joke because we had slopped color on the floor, WHITE dining table, WHITE chair, WHITE cupboard and ourselves.




Thanks to Esman the very 'experienced' hair colorist, he has now left stains on my neck. Now it looks berdaki. Aaarghh.....
And my hand!

I have First Lady photo shoot tomorrow. If you see me hiding my right hand on TV, you know why ah.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Aspiring Chipette

Having not watched the first one, I was a little bit worried I would not be able to understand the Alvin and the Chipmunks the squeakquel.
My friends assured me that the plot didn't 'carry on' and they were right!
Nyla thoroughly enjoyed the movie and is now a HEEEYUUUGEEE fan (and impersonator!) of the all girl group of chipmunks- the Chipettes. (They are reallllyyyyy cute. I so feel like squeezing Eleanor, the overweight chipette dressed in green! Toooooo gerams.)

Nyla's been pestering me to log on to You Tube over and over again to watch the Chipettes sing Beyonce's Single Ladies.

At first, she sat and watched.
Now?
Member let loose hokay!

I present you the 4th member of the Chipettes, Nyla!

video

There is also another video.
Acapella, this time.
According to an Indian buddy of mine, it sounds Tamil-ish. Hee Hee!
I present you now Nyla...singing 'Single Ladies' yet again..this time versi Hindustan!

video


With a girl like her in the house, there is no need to watch comedies!
Thanks for the entertainment, babe!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Date with Mom

I realised that I hardly spend quality time with my mom ever since I have a place of my own.
That plus the fact that I am now wholly in charge of Nyla and busy with my other baby, Bottoms Up!.

Yes, I do see her nearly every weekend when I visit her and my dad but what I mean is I seldom go out on a date with her, as in just me and her.
I remembered pre-marriage and pre-Nyla, I used to go out with her pretty often.

To JB, we would take bus service 170 to Larkin.
To CK Tang if she needs a new bag. Lunch would always be at Far East Plaza because she loves the mee goreng at Puncak.
To Arab Street/Geylang if she wants to buy new kain. Lunch at Zam Zam if at Arab Street and Hjh Maimunah if at Geylang.

Last Monday night, I missed her terribly so I called her asking her if she would like to go out on a date with her only daughter.
She sounded very keen. Yeay!

So the very next day, she dropped by my place for a little while to relax after her religious class. Then once I got Nyla ready for school, we left my place, dropped off the babe at her school and off we went to Geylang for some uninterrupted time together for a delicious lunch, some shopping and of course loads of chatting.


Mom, we should do this more often.
I had a lovely time and will try to make time to increase our bonding moments, I promise.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Spilt Milk

I was in a pretty foul mood yesterday.
It also does not help at all that when everytime I get bitchy, Nyla will somehow do stuff, either accidentally or intentional, that will annoy me big time.

I was in the kitchen, getting ready to cook for Esman. (nothing fantastic. just maggi noodles. Foul mood, remember? Anyway selamat laki aku suka Maggi curry! Heng ah!)
Nyla then appeared and decided that she would give me a helping hand by ripping the packet of noodles.
She did such a wonderful job that the little bits of uncooked noodles landed on the floor.

I was about to scream but seeing her swiftly scoot away from me was such a funny sight. (But still not funny enough to even make me smile. Foul mood, remember?)
I just gave her my stare and of course nagged like a mak nenek going on and on, 'Nylaaaaa, you ah....Aiyo....See. Now I have to sweep! Nylaaaaaaaa.Tsk Tsk.....'

Well fast forward 3 hours later, after putting Nyla to sleep, I was surfing the net and I came across this wonderful story I thought I'd share with you. I hope it makes you think twice before you scream your head off.


The Split Milk

This is a story about a famous research scientist who had made several very important medical breakthroughs. He was being interviewed by a newspaper reporter who asked him why he thought he was able to be so much more creative than the average person. What set him so far apart from others?

He responded that, in his opinion, it all came from an experience with his mother that occurred when he was about two years old. He had been trying to remove a bottle of milk from the refrigerator when he lost his grip on the slippery bottle and it fell, spilling its contents all over the kitchen floor—a veritable sea of milk!
When his mother came into the kitchen, instead of yelling at him, giving him a lecture, or punishing him, she said, "Robert, what a great and wonderful mess you have made! I have rarely seen such a huge puddle of milk. Well, the damage has already been done. Would you like to get down and play in the milk for a few minutes before we clean it up?"

Indeed, he did. After a few minutes, his mother said, "You know, Robert, whenever you make a mess like this, eventually you have to clean it up and restore everything to its proper order. So, how would you like to do that? We could use a sponge, a towel, or a mop. Which do you prefer?" He chose the sponge and together they cleaned up the spilled milk.

His mother then said, "You know, what we have here is a failed experiment in how to effectively carry a big milk bottle with two tiny hands. Let's go out in the back yard and fill the bottle with water and see if you can discover a way to carry it without dropping it." The little boy learned that if he grasped the bottle at the top near the lip with both hands, he could carry it without dropping it. What a wonderful lesson!

This renowned scientist then remarked that it was at that moment that he knew he didn't need to be afraid to make mistakes. Instead, he learned that mistakes were just opportunities for learning something new, which is, after all, what scientific experiments are all about. Even if the experiment "doesn't work," we usually learn something valuable from it.

http://blogs.softbeats.net/page/Social-Today.aspx

Beautiful ain't it?
Damn! After reading the story, I felt extremely lousy and guilty.
There could be a teachable moment out of the incident in the kitchen but I snapped.
If only I could turn back time.
Well, I just have to wait for Esman to crave for his maggi curry noodles and this time, Nyla, please feel free to scatter the noodles on the floor.

Sampai Cinta Menjemputku

I remembered watching him on stage with the rest of his Echoboys members during the Kara-U-Ok musical I attended in 1998.
I was still a secondary school girl who was very kental to the max.
Since he was the only malay guy in the group, the malay girls were pretty fanatic and gushing over him because he was (and still is!) one good looking mat. Kembang la tu!

Fast forward 5 years later, I bumped into him again at the Krayon auditions, only this time, I was *ehem ehem* in the entertainment industry as well and no longer kental blachan.


We, together with Kak Oni, were selected as the Krayon hosts and I realised then that Hatta was truly meant for the entertainment industry because he is an all rounder.
He's got looks. He can sing. He can dance. He can act. He can host.
When Hatta left us after 3 seasons of Krayon because he wanted to fly, we were devastated because we were really a dynamic team. *Remember the tenderloin thighs joke at Bishan Park! Hah!*
Anyway, Hatta is now back in showbiz with a vengeance!
When I heard his latest single, 'Sampai Cinta Menjemputku' on the radio sometime ago, I wasn't surprised at all because it's about time!
The song was also chosen to be the theme song of last year's Hari Raya Haji drama - a joint collaboration between Singapore & Brunei !
Good on you, bro! I'm really proud of you.
I wish you all the best in your future endeavours. :)
So Hatta Said fans, whatcha waiting for! Request for the song on RIA/WARNA! :)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Nylarella

My little makcik has been anxious to explore the world of adult activity.
When she was much younger, we bought for her some useful tools such as broom, mop, brush etc and allowed her to pretend help.
Well, she is a big girl now and her help is no longer pretend anymore. Good news for me!
A reliable helper, she has learnt to pick up her toys, put her clothes into the laundry bag before her shower and even help me carry light shopping bags.
Sometimes, she even attempts to wash the dishes, much to my horror, because the kitchen floor will surely end up flooded. And I think I know why she loves doing the dishes.
Reason number 1: She gets to play with soap and bubbles.

Reason number 2: She loves mopping the floor.


What are the other housework she helps me with?
Folding clothes.
We also managed to 'slot in' a Maths lesson. Arranging the clothes hangers in the same order. Hee!

And then when we go to JB, she'll help her Tok Daddy water the plants.
Thanks for the Science lesson, Pa!


I guess I'll seize this household chores fever moment while Nyla is still very enthusiastic.
Anyway, Nyla was really cute when she told me this,
Nyla: Mommy, this is so fun. I don't want to be a vet anymore. When I grow up, I want to be a Bibik.

Any employers out there keen on hiring Bibik Nyla?

She is definitely a great little helper but I should warn you that she gets easily distracted and being her hilarious self, she will ocassionally dump her chores to express her best self by
dancing

and practising her catwalking skills. Tsk Tsk!


and might I add, you might also spot some blocks under the couch. :)

For you, a thousand times over

As the first few days of school rolled in, I realised that I had been a witness as well as an accomplice in the diminishing of Nyla's joy of learning which I'm sure will also slowly and eventually lead to the diminishing of her self- confidence.

The new environment she was in the past few days offered little opportunity for her to use her creativity and imagination.

Therefore, Nyla will be coming back to her first love, Chiltern House.
Chiltern House, thank you for welcoming my girl again with wide open arms.

Seeing that beaming face when I told her she'll be seeing her friends again was priceless.
Never mind that I have to travel to and fro.
For you, a thousand times over, my baby girl.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Tanjong Pinang

Tanjong Pinang was SHIOKADOODOOOS!

The moment we reached the hotel, Esman and I booked our slots for foot refloxology and full body massage sessions. Our masseuses did great, kneading away all the stress and the angins in our bodies.
We felt so much rejuvenated after that.

Foot refloxology time.
Cream bath for hair is a must whenever I am in Indonesia to nourish, revitalize and moisturize my toasted hair.

Esman followed suit, mainly for the head and shoulder massage.

We also dragged Nyla into having a hair cream bath to disentangle her web of curls.
She enjoyed her experience, I must say, until the lady towel-wrapped her hair, turban style.
Yikes!
And while waiting for her hair to ‘suck in’ all the nutrients, she requested if she could also do her nails just like Farysha.
Nyla waiting for her turn to do a manicure.
End result: Left hand, pink nail polish. Right hand, purple.
Gasak kau la nak. Asal kau bahagia.

This time round, I did not eat much. The last time I went to Tanjong Pinang in 2008, I was struck by food poisoning. Hence, I refrained myself from being a pelahap and controlled my food/drinks intake. It was tough for me boy! Drank only canned drinks and bottled mineral water. The kelong food was delicious, especially the black pepper crabs. I also tried the kapal selam and pisang goreng keju, strongly recommended by Farha and Shof. Takleh angs!





I didn't do much retail therapy either.
I don’t know why but ever since Nyla, when I go on holidays, my shopping-drive just goes downhill.
I just want my girl to have fun and oh yes, she truly had one helluva fun!










Ultimately, humans in general strive in a social fraternity and I personally feel that nothing can beat the family network. This short trip has definitely strengthened the bonds among us.














To Busu, thank you for doing all the planning and making our short getaway a memorable one, yet again. :)
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