February 26, 2015

the household winner.

I try to cook on most days even if I get back home slightly late and even if cooking only means making the simplest dishes, bak kata orang; masak bodoh-bodoh aje. There's a mamak restaurant at my office but really, how long can you survive on mamak without getting bored, ey? I mean like, I can't even stand my own cooking, especially if I've been cooking every single day, so... yeah. 

So, since I like eating home-cooked meals (and so does everyone else at home), I'll normally have a game plan of some sort to make dinner preparation as stress-free as possible. And that means whipping up something that is filling, wholesome and yet easy to prepare such as -

ONE POT MEALS. 

Or more specifically, one post PASTAS.

At one point, I had to google one pot pasta recipes every single day because that was the only form of carb Luqman would take. After a while, my husband and I got really bored of pasta so we ate out so that Luqman could continue to have his pasta while we took a pasta break. 

Be that as it may, one pot pasta remains to be one of my favourite game plans, because it really is as easy as it sounds!

The base ingredients are the same; pasta (duh!), onion, garlic, olive oil, some vege, stock/sauce and protein of your choice and these ingredients are normally readily available in my kitchen.
 
Just 2 days ago, I got home a little late. It was pasar malam day but I really didn't have the mood to go through the whole cari parking, choose food and pay process, I just wanted to get home! So naturally, it turned out to be a one pot pasta day. 

My husband had his own plans that night so he didn't eat that much, leaving us with loads of leftover pasta. Coincidentally, overnight pasta is also a favourite in my household because seriously, it tastes so much better the next day! You should really try!

Last night, both of us had to work late. Of course that meant that there wouldn't be ample time to prepare an elaborate dinner. Luckily we still had the overnight pasta so I just had to buy some protein to add to whatever we had. 

When my husband finally got home, he saw the pasta and the ayam goreng and told me that he only wanted a little bit of pasta but wanted to ratah the ayam goreng. After years of knowing him, I knew better not to kecik hati with this because that only meant that the ayam goreng looked more appealing, no offense to my pasta. So, I obliged and prepared the necessary. 

While he was having dinner, I got other things done and when he was done, I was sooo bummed, I forgot all about the left overs, so I asked him about it. 

"SAYA HABISKAN SEMUA PASTA."
 (and it was ALOT okay!)

Turns out that the pasta was yummier than the store-bought ayam goreng. 

My pasta wins! Yeeehah! 

*flips tudung*

February 25, 2015

enjoying my own company (too much).

These past few weeks, I've been spending most of my lunch hours commuting to and from the office to our new place. Yes, just in case you are curious, the photo below shows 2 of my biggest achievements in life; a child and now a new place of our own. 

As with all new houses, there are tonnes of works to be done to make a house a home, hence the constant commute to make sure that things have progressed as per plan. 

Just before the CNY break, our contractors got all the wet works done, as promised. 

And then, after the CNY break, the other contractors came by to do some defects rectification works as we are still in the defects liability period of 6 months. 

Just now, I signed off a piece of paper saying that I am satisfied with the works done (for now at least) and now, all we have to do is wait for our furniture to arrive. 

Hence, the free lunch time. 

To be honest... I don't know what to do with all this time. 

At 1245 I sat down at my desk, just staring at the time, watching as the minutes went by, wondering if I should go out for an actual lunch; a luxury which I have dearly missed. 

But now that I actually have the time (and it's 2 minutes past 1300 at the time I'm writing this), I really don't know anymore if I actually miss that free time all that much...

More than anything, I'm so overwhelmed with the endless options of what could be done to fulfill this short hour, which is weird because I don't normally get sooo worked up about this hour since it's so short to begin with! 

Gah!

I'm so weird. We're all soo weird.

More than anything, although this isn't really news to anyone, I think, I think I'm beginning to enjoy my own company a little bit too much.

I should go out and bask in the sun. 

And just so you know, I don't know why I had to write all of that down.

It's been a while, hasn't it?


February 24, 2015

mamahood 101: the wrong crowd.

It was a normal school day and perhaps the only thing that happened differently that day was that I was the one who picked Luqman up. Normally, I wouldn't be so lucky to get off so early (guilty as charged). 

And like any normal day, I told Luqman to do his round of salam teacher, which he was really hesitant and rather bashful about but that was also pretty normal. 

What wasn't normal was when his teacher made a passing remark (not in verbatim) - 

"Eleh, malu-malu je lebih padahal samseng!"

And my.heart.dropped.

 Obviously, I wasn't very happy with her calling my son all kinds of names, after all, panggilan tu kan doa (?) but I figured that this wasn't the time for preaching, so instead, I probed further on what she meant. 

SO, she told me that Luqman has been getting into fights with one of his friends (?) once too often. It's like the both of them really hate each others' guts (not sure why) and they start fighting the moment they meet. She also told me that he's into the habit of squashing people on the floor (there's 5 of them including Luqman who lovee to do this) and also biting others with all his might.

This was news to me. Really. For a long while, I swear I felt sick to my stomach. I found all of this hard to digest because he is nothing like what his teacher tells me when he's at home and I know for a fact that he is not a habitual biter.

Though hard to believe, I also knew that the teacher had no reason or motive to tell tales of my sweet boy, so I thanked her for telling me and corrected her name-calling, just to set things straight. She got it and thereafter stopped.

I had a sleepless night. It was hard to believe that the boy I raised had turned out to be so... unlike how I raised him (?). I know that I have to get to the bottom of things but I just don't know how. It wasn't happening at home so there was nothing to immediately rectify when he was in my presence so I tried talking to him about things.

About how he was always fighting with that particular boy;
About who he was friends with;
About why he was biting people,

You know, things you normally talk about with your 3-year olds (not!).

I never expected that I would have to face these kind of problems so early in my mamahood and frankly, I don't know yet how on earth I am supposed to solve the problem.

So, if you have any idea or have faced the same problem, please do shed some light on this clueless mom!

Who knew that Taska too, has a "wrong crowd", right?

Sigh.

For now, I'm just pep-talking him and praying that this is all temporary.

*urut kepala*

February 18, 2015

with a big warm hug.

 49/365.

12.02.2015 was for me, a very special day for it was the day that I turned 30. 

I don't know why, but the rest of the world seemed so stressed out to be entering their thirties. And because that stress (for me at least) seems a little unwarranted, I tried my best not to jump onto that very stressful bandwagon. 

After all, growing older really is inevitable, isn't it?

On that day, I took a day off from work, like I always try to do every year. Only this year, I didn't have any "birthday plans", so to speak. 

That day wasn't about blowing candles off my cake or celebrating with a hundred balloons. Instead, it was spent embracing the growing up that had to come with that age. (But of course the mini celebration with the husband and little something something he got me was very much appreciated! Ehehehe) 

If I had to describe that day into a single word, it would be - "Apt".

xxx

Some time last year, I admit that I did wonder about what is expected out of a 30-year old; whether there are milestones that I needed to reach, or any achievements that I needed to unlock, a certain number of children that I should already have or a certain salary that I should be paid.

And honestly, it worried me if I wasn't thirty enough.

That was until I met some of my friends who have had the luxury of travelling the world, to whom I expressed my envy, only to be told how lucky I actually was to be coming back to a home, a husband and a cheeky baby every single day. Because for them, travelling was a way to fulfill the life they wished they had, which is mine.

It made me realise that success really is a matter of utmost subjectivity. There is no one definition that could rightly fit a 30-year old and everyone is measured on their own measuring scale and device of choice. 

If you're happy and you know it, that is all that really matters. 

xxx

And like I've said more times than I care to remember in my older posts, when I vowed to make my happiness my own responsibility, it took me to greater heights; higher than I've ever imagined. 

For that, Alhamdulillah.

I am now 30 and I'm welcoming it with a big warm hug. 


And Alhamdulillah, the unlocking of some personal achievements too.

February 06, 2015

IAMJANUARY


Like most women who can only dream of having long, uninterrupted, physical shopping trips, I enjoy online (window) shopping ALOT. When the going gets tough, I surf websites providing these services and dream of owning pieces I know I won't ever have the time or event to wear them to but put them in my "cart" anyway. Then, reality hits and I forget all about it... until... these online shops remind me that I have unpaid items in my cart, would you like to proceed with payment and own them pretty please (while they bat their virtual eyelashes at me).

AND I think, "Why not?" and make the necessary payment and wait at the door for my parcel to arrive because I don't want my husband to find out although there was once, when he got to the door first and then came knocking at the toilet door shortly after, asking me who Fashionvalet is. Well, in my defence I never thought they would deliver the parcel on New Year's Day, so... (changed my mailing and delivery address thereafter hehe)

Well, anyway, those are my shopping (mis)adventures.

One of the upsides of online shopping though, apart from not having to spend hours that I can't afford at the malls, are the discount codes that they dish out to their loyal customers. Even if  loyal only means that I keep browsing page after page after page, and keep putting things in my virtual cart only to forget/discard them later on. 

And just recently, Fashionvalet gave me the IAMJANUARY code. 

You all know I AM NOT A JANUARY PERSON, right? I mean like, just look at how my January turned out to be.

Nonetheless, even though they forgot that my birthday is in February, I appreciated the gesture and wondered what I should get my hands on. Read the fineprint many times to see if there were any product/brand exclusions and saw none, which I must say is apt, because we should be able to choose anything for our birthday right? 

And so, I locked my eyes on the dUckscarves, which seem to be all the rage. 

UNTIL,

they announced that they would be launching #sofina3 on 28 January 2015.

After they announced that they would be having a secret sale for members, I was excited because that only meant that the chances of me owning at least one Sofina was higher. 

Only... 

The red Sofina sold out in 3 minutes flat during the secret sale.

I managed to put the thing in my cart. And couldn't check out. By then, I had already anticipated that there wouldn't be any left for sale to non-members.

So I went to Sometime and signed up because I wanted to grab it at 11 a.m.. I had my heart set on the red one and that was the only one I wanted, nothing else. 

Told myself many times not to fall prey to "as long as I get myself a Sofina" trick but getting the red one was just SO hard. 

At 11 a.m. I was already on Sometime. 

Put the red bag in my cart and I COULDN'T FREAKING CHECKOUT because there were 3*** next to my product code. Since I am not familiar with Sometime, I really didn't know what that meant and tried and tried and tried again to no avail. Finally, I saw the fineprint which said that the product wasn't available in the quantity that I wanted or was sold out.

I went back to Sometime's main page and checked the other colours out... I was so tempted to put at least one bag in my cart, just one, but the colours just didn't scream, "I wana come home to you!". Eventually, after much deliberation, I decided not to make an impulse purchase and saw the other colours slowly, but surely fly off their virtual shelves. 

Coincidentally, 28 January 2015 was one of the worst days of January. THE WORST! 

It was so bad that I was crying on the phone while talking to almost anyone who would hear me cry. Even then, I didn't feel any better so I turned to Adik, who seems to have learned the art of saying everything while saying nothing.

While I was on the phone with her during lunch hour, I told her about my very bad day and told her that I so badly wanted the bag but it was just impossible to own the bag. Just to prove a point (not that Adik could see me through the phone), I went to Fashionvalet (for the umpteenth time that day!) to tell her that they didn't appear on the page anymore,

ONLY THEY DID!!!

I carefully picked the red Sofina and put it in my cart. I slowly keyed in IAMJANUARY code and held my breath, just in case it was rejected, but it went through so 25% was slashed off the original price! I proceeded to checkout, made my payments, checked my mailing address, twice (hehe) and all the while, I was on the phone with Adik telling her that she should get one too (she didn't!). 

Fast forward 2 days later, which is exactly a week ago, it arrived in my office.

I WAS SO STOKED, I LITERALLY JUMPED FROM MY SEAT! 

And so far, I am very happy that I jumped on the Sofina bandwagon. It has an amazing make and seriously sturdier than I thought it would be. Adik agrees that it even smells like real leather (saw her secretly stroking and smelling it when I was back in TTDI the other day ehehe).

And to Fashionvalet, I wouldn't mind getting an IAMFEBRUARY discount code in my mail, either. 

Hehe. 


#justtryingmyluck
#dahbagibetisnakpeha

February 04, 2015

sugar at the bottom.

35/365.

(written on 32/365)

As I was sipping on my store-bought instant coffee this morning, which I mixed at the convenience store to-go, I wondered why it wasn't as sweet as I thought it would be. After all, I did read the ingredients TWICE just to be sure that sugar was part of the package. 

My January was pretty much the same as my coffee this morning. After making sure that I had all the bases covered (or so I thought), I ended up having to constantly take deep, deep breathes to pace myself. Very deep ones. 

My stress levels were so stretched, they almost left permanent marks on my otherwise bubbly disposition. 

But then today, as I was coming to the last few sips of my coffee, I could finally taste the sweetness of the sugar. Talk about saving the best for last, huh?

And in the same way, that's exactly how my life went by in January (and actually pretty much every other month of the year, actually. Only more so this January, kind of); bitter--sweet - in that order. 

While I thought that my life had pretty much hit rock bottom just the other day, life itself promised that, contrary to popular believe, misery is not bottomless

It isn't. 

January closed with a HUGE bang (and a really good one at that); one good thing after another came (some of them when I least expected) -- one of them being the long weekend, which was one of most well-spent ones we've had in some time now. And with February starting with such brightness, it's difficult not to be thankful for how life has turned. 

Indeed, with hardship comes ease. 

Because even my bitter coffee had sugar at the bottom - as promised.