Friday, March 30, 2007

What I've Been Up To

1. I was feeling ill for the past few days, with sore throat and a cold. It was a frustrating feeling of 'almost' falling sick but never got there. Something like, wanting to sneeze but it just cannot happen. By the way, my definition of sick is the full blown fever. So now I have all the pent up heat energy with no channels to release it. Hot and bothered... nyeh.

2. Since I didn't get REAL sick, I went to a work conference which was held at the Pan Pac Singapore. The best thing about it is the free hotel-food lunch. Then right after the conference, I was just few minutes away from one of my favourite shopping place.

3. I've been collecting a lot of scrapbooking tools and materials, mostly paper, ribbons and buttons. But I am not into scrapbooking. I'm getting my routine materials for my greeting card making hobby, which I have been passionate about for many years, something which surprises me even, because I've never been interested in something for more than 3 days. So this card making hobby is for real and here to stay. That's why I dare to invest so much money and time for it.

4. I'm looking for a camera to take good pictures of my card products for possible web business in future. So far my Canon IXUS couldn't capture the 'true' colour, so this is definitely out. I probably have to stick with the traditional film and scanning. I'll see...

Monday, March 26, 2007

Boy's New Haircut

He refused to put on that plastic protector and as a result, both of us were covered in hair! That dungu! But I guess it was worth it. I think he looks dashing. So dashing that I found myself letting him off the hook everytime he was up to mischief.

I read somewhere that apparently, parents tend to treat the more attractive child better. In fact, all throughout life, the more attractive people get more advantages in life, like higher pay, promotions, not getting a ticket by the traffic cops etc.. In one episode of a documentary about children, one advice given to parents who are sending their kids off to school on the first day is, to make the child look good. Why? Even at that tender age, looks play a part in social life. By looking good, you're more likely to make new friends and be popular in class, thus boosting the child's self-esteem. OK, who doesn't know this right... everyone does. But is it really really true? I think personality plays an equal part as well. Daniel will be a great class his daddy.

Friday, March 23, 2007

What I Heard on the Radio Today

Apparently, Cheng Meng is such a big thing in China, to the extent that people are burning paper Viagra pills and pictures of condoms and bargirls for their dead male relatives.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Cheng Meng

On Monday, I took half a day off from work to go to Seremban for Cheng Meng. This is an annual event for Chinese, something like a memorial day I guess, to visit the graves of their deceased family member(s), clean up the area a bit and of course, to pay respect.

I took a 2.5 hours drive with the little one which was quite a pleasant journey, since he is ok being strapped up for that period of time and didn't complain much. I am one lucky mother. Since we travel quite often to Seremban, I guess this is not new to him. And I was also lucky that I didn't feel sleepy at all, which I usually do on a long-distance drive. Maybe because I had to sing songs and chat with him throughout the journey. Exhausting!

The next morning, we headed to the cemetery with our offerings which consist a boiled chicken, some rice dumplings, some 'paos',3 bowls of rice, chinese tea, rice wine, lots of jossticks, prayer candles and folded paper money to burn. Ya, this is a memory re-cap for those who hasn't done this for your ah gong ah ma for a long long time.

Nowadays, the cemeteries are cleaner and well-maintained compared to eons ago where you might get lost in the jungle of tall grass and lalangs all over the place and get scratched by the thorny plants. That's why kids don't really like this event I guess, as well as vainpots because you're practically under the blazing sun for an hour or more, and this is an event you don't do at night. Even with an umbrella, the heat can really get to you, plus, how would you offer jossticks and hold an umbrella at the same time right. Well, I tried. Not because I'm a vainpot, but because too much sun is not good for babies. I developed good arm muscles within an hour.

By the way, two funerals took place when we were there, and grandpa tried very hard not to let the little one see it because it's a taboo especially when the coffins are lowered into the ground.

We were done in a couple of hours. Daniel and I head back to JB that day itself, and I had the whole journey to myself and my iPod while he slept. Ahhh...bliss.

I am glad I made this trip :)

Monday, March 19, 2007

Desaru Beach Part 2

The beach has opened, marking the end of monsoon. And it's no better time to get exfoliated by the sand and sea water and watch the little one get fascinated by the waves.

The sandcastle that Count De La Somebody built.

The sandhouse that I built.

Another Convenite Lil Gathering!

Wow, I feel like I'm meeting up with a lot of lost ol' Convenites these days, and I hope to keep it up! And it's a good training ground for the littel boy to learn how to hang out with aunties and che-ches.

From left: Anette ( Prema's church buddy), Carolyn Chuah ( Yes! Carolyn Chuah! It's been 12 years!!And she has 4 beautiful children, 3 boys + a girl), me and Daniel, and Prema. I met Linda, too briefly unfortunately. But she looks the same.

Another boy with a little janggut, Hong Kit.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Home Sweet Home

Sometimes I imagine that I am moving back into my family home, which is in Bandar Baru UDA, the home where I spent most of my teenage years, studying like a dork, looking like a dork and acting like a dork. It was my home before I moved out and into my current marital home where I spent a lot of time making out, cooking, cleaning, raising a baby and a husband, and wishing I could go back as a dork for JUST one day.

I think about my old home as a messy art canvas waiting to be cleaned up and re-painted. A FRESH NEW START. The excitement of being given a second chance to make things right, to reorganize our tonnes of stuff and to trash our tonnes of unused garbage ( which we always need 3 days after throwing them away, dunno why).

The best part about sweet-dreaming is the fact that it can actually become a reality soon! I say 'can' only ah. Suspense...

Monday, March 12, 2007

Chingay Parade

T'was the time of the year again to block up some roads and to jam up the other roads. It's the Chingay Parade! There's one held in Johor Bahru every year, but this was the first time I actually watched it upclose. I was rather fascinated, not to mention the little one. All he babbled after that was "Gong gong gong gong gong gong gong gong apunehkonah?" Before I flood in the pictures, here's a littel trivia about the Chingay festival.

Chingay is held as part of the Chinese New Year festivities, and the name coined in Penang, which means "decorated miniature stage" or float. Today, the such parades have evolved into massive multicultural and sometimes international event, something which the parade in JB has NOT evolved into... yet. Now, you may not know about the little untold history about the Chingay in JB. Thanks to my mom who is a tour guide (they get many untold histories/stories about everything and anything). One of the Sultan of Johor's great great grandmother was a Chinese from Hong Kong, and she wanted the Chingay parade to be held in Johor Bahru every year. When she died, the tradition went on, but there was this particular year when the state officials decided to do away with it. It rained non-stop for 3-4 days. Maybe her spirit got angry... So then, the back-by-popular-demand Chingay Parade was back. Moral of the story is, don't anger the Chinese gods and deities and spirits.

What we saw:
A LOT of dragons.

Lion dance.

The Drum 'Chariot'

A God (?) who smokes and drink and be merry! He also gives away red packet that symbolizes fortune and prosperity. So naturally everybody wants to be near him.

Seriously, I don't know who these characters are but they definitely look like the Chinese opera troupe.

Convenite's Lil Meet-Up

Friday, March 02, 2007

Is that a Cornetto in your hands?

"No, mummy, I'm NOT eating a Cornetto all by myself"

Work has been piling since I was back in the lab after the traumatizing CNY road trip. Yes, it did have THAT much of an effect on me. When we came back to Johor Bahru, Daniel came down with fever, on and off, and rather alarmingly high. Turns out, he had a middle ear infection. I've always been a little anxious and maybe a little paranoid too, about babies having fever. Some mothers are little more relaxed about it, saying that it is normal for babies to have higher temperature than adults during fever. But there is always this lingering fear of what a simple high fever can do. So, I constantly 'test' Daniel to reassure myself. So far, nothing serious that needs to be addressed.

And oh yes, he did finish the whole Cornetto all by himself. Nothing for me.. boo hoo.