Monday, March 30, 2015

What a March!

It has not been an easy month but am glad that it is almost end of March. Everyone was ill, and we have to deal with the unpredictably warm weather. Jamie is very moody and nearly get to my head lately. Hard dealing with his tantrum. Not even 2 and he is already showing the "Terrible 2" behaviour?

And now here I am drafting this post with a pain in my butt. Yup, you read it right. I had a little slipping accident last night at home. Did not realized the floor was wet so I slipped and hit my butt. Still sore at this point of time.

Oh boy, you could imagine how we got through the month but glad that we are getting back to our normal routine again. 

Jan and Jay are blending in well in schools and doing fine. After schools, both are busy with school works. Not much times to nap. More school works and tests are coming in this semester and that include Jay too.

Jan got good result in her 1st semester exam. As usual, her Chinese is her weakest subject. All subjects scored 90+ except Chinese. She is number 2 in her class out of 40 students. Well done and keep it up, Jan.

While both kids are in school, I can catch up on some tv and slot in some times to teach Jamie. And I have started to potty train him too. Will blog about his training soon.

Once a week I will bring Jamie to market with my mum to replenish my fridge. He enjoys his outing as he loves to see and walk around. A bit guilty as I seldom bring him and the other kids out as often as I could.

Have submitted Jay's primary school registration forms. And starting this month end, I put him and Jan into trilingual reading centre, so every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday he will have 2 hours of tuition in the afternoon while Jan only goes to Tuesday and Friday for an hour Chinese language class. I like the centre as it is 1 to 1 teaching method and more on words recognition, understanding and reading. Lesser time for them play and watch tv at home now. Lol.

Jan has been helping around more in house chore. Sometimes she helps me in the kitchen by preparing the vegetables and do the dishes. She is washing her own school shoes now.

She also manage and clean her own bedroom. Give her a little sense of responsibility so she would be more independent and take care of her small space by herself. Of course once a while I will clean her room just to make sure everything is in order.

Jay is more playful so it takes time to train him to manage his room. However he knows his duty where every afternoon after back from school, he will have his lunch, bathe and then do school works and learn. Only when both Jan and Jay finish their school works, then they can switch on the tv and watch their programmes.

Both have not been going to their swimming lesson since early this month after Jay was infected with HFMD. Maybe when the outbreak has cooled down, I shall get them to continue with their lesson.

That is how our daily grind of life looks like lately. With a little help from Jan, we manage well. Good news is that soon my hubby is transferring back and how happy are we! After 4.5 months, we are going to be together again. No more separation. Thank God for answering my prayers.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Last night

Dropped by the 3rd miles hawker market for a supper last night since we had early dinner at my mum's place.  The kids complained that they were hungry. They wanted satay so we came to the market since it is along the way.

One could find some of the good hawker food there. As usual it was packed on Saturday evening.

I had this refreshing and cooling bowl of tong sui called ngor bee thng, which is a must-order there. This tong sui was not too sweet but I personally think it was lack of ingredients. I prefer the other one that I had few months back from another stall. We could not order from the other stall since we were seated right in front of this drink stall last night. Nevertheless I enjoyed my ngor bee thng.

Sis had this fried noodle from Stall 15 which she said is the best around there. RM2.70 per plate. You can have it sweet or salty, but I always go for the latter taste.

Mum had her usual dose of kueh chap(RM5.00). She loves it very much. A lot of ingredients for this special order.

As for me, I were craving for pork porridge so I went for it last night. RM3.00 for my porridge, which I think was nice but I still like the one in Open Air Market. Always my favourite.

When I dug in, all the unwanted innards came out. Oops, forgot to tell the lady to replace them with extra pork mince instead.

Well, with full tummies, dad sent us home. My mum was commented earlier that I lost some weight. Probably because I was sick for over 2 weeks and did not eat much. I told her after this supper, I would gain few calories. Lol.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Weekend mood

A very good girlfriend just messaged me telling me that she has undergone an abortion. Oh dear! Her 3rd baby is almost 20 weeks and doctor discovered that baby has genetic disorder called Trisomy 18, which affect the brain and heart development. So given no choice, my friend has to abort her baby.

Really heartbreaking. I shared my friend's feeling and loss. I am a mum too. Wish her and hubby will recover from their loss and get on with their lives.

Thinking of it, I am blessed to have 3 wonderful children. With them around, my life is complete and contented. My prayers always been for them to stay and grow healthy, happy and well; and follow God's words.

This week has been nothing but busy. Rushing here and there. And am I so look forward to the weekend.

Weekend means I can breathe a bit and slow things down. No rushing here and there. However I have been planning to bring the children out this weekend.

Picture taken from here

I know the children have been bored over the school holiday as we basically stayed at home away from the warm sun. And just a blink of the eyes, the school is here again!

I did promised them I will bring them out after Jay and I recovered from our illnesses. I have been taking a rain check from them for over two weeks now. So, weekend, here we come!

Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Rat tails in my soup

Oh, no worry. What I am saying here is rat tails noodle in my soup for breakfast.

My childhood favourite noodle. Lao Shu Fen (rat tails noodle or more fancy name is silver needle noodle). This rice noodle is tapered at both ends so it resembled rat tails or needle. It basically like kuaw tiaw but thicker and cylinder-shaped.

I have this lovely lao shu fen soup the other morning. Something different from my usual kolok mee for a change.

And I bought something after my breakfast. Another of my childhood favourite. A snack! For the children.

Kuih Bahulu or Ji Dan Gao as fondly called. Don't think it is that nice as I could remember. Soft and fragrant. This one that I bought was too dry and did not taste good.

Oh well, not everything survived with the times I guess. Or maybe I should look else where to find better food.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

An egg a day

Think of it, it is more than an egg a day!

My family is an egg lover. We eat so many eggs that we buy 2-3 cartons per month. For breakfast I would cook at least 4 eggs for the whole family. I have not yet count lunch and dinner where I would whip up an egg dish.

If hubby is at home, he must have his usual breakfast set of bacon, hash brown, baked beans and omelette. Used to be 2 eggs for him but he has cut down to one.

The kids like to have their sandwiches for breakfast so I would fry the luncheon meat and egg for their sandwiches. Most of the times, they bring this sandwich to schools in their snack boxes.

Some days I would go for French toast as it is easy, delicious and goes well with a cup of tea.

The week when my mum-in-law was here, she introduced me to her breakfast recipe that she sells in her canteen. She called it "Roti Koboi" as she first saw it in a jeans advertisement few years ago. So from that day onwards, she experimented and cooked it in her canteen.

One morning she cooked her "Roti Koboi" for me. It turned out to be what people known as "egg-in-the-basket". She beat the egg before pour in the middle of the English bread. Feel like eating a French toast, except it is hollow in the middle!

Last week, I made my own egg in the basket breakfast. Just cut off the middle part of the bread. Once butter melt in the pan, I added my bread and let it toasts for few seconds. Flipped over and break an egg into the centre of the bread.

Let it cook for few seconds till the egg has set. Add a pinch of salt and dash of white pepper before dish it out into serving plate.

I love my egg yolk soft and runny while the egg white is not too set. I run out of cheese, otherwise I would add a slice of cheese underneath my egg. Nevertheless I enjoyed my egg in the basket.

What do you think? Does this entice anyone for an egg-y breakfast or brunch today?? What is your favourite egg breakfast? ^^

Sunday, March 22, 2015

What's the name?

The name of this place? Bo Jio Pai.

"Bo Jio" in Hokkien means "did not invite". "Pai" is name, sign or address. However if combine the 3 words together it would be "no signboard or name". So, literally this place has "no name".

First time here on one afternoon. Pass by this place every time send the kids for their swimming class and have been wondering about the food they served. It is a big plot of land with a single storey brown house in the centre. The set-up inside the "house" is very simple; nothing impressive. Long tables, ceiling fans and open concept. Rather warm on a very hot afternoon. Feel like I am eating in a canteen. ^^

One afternoon I brought my 3 musketeers for lunch here. I ordered barley lemon drink as it was a very warm day that day. Jamie loves barley so I could feed him some of this drink.

The waiter recommended its Bo Jio Pai fried rice so I agreed. Fried rice with a little twist of fruit. Green apple!! Can you see the cubed green apple in my fried rice? RM5.90 for this delicious fried rice. I quite enjoyed it. Not too oily and enough "wok hei". Taste-wise, it was just nice. Not much msg or salt detected, which is good. It would be even better if they could add more prawns and sliced chicken than what they served me.

The kids each have a plate of fried mee hoon. Nicely done from the look of it. Quite a lot of ingredients to it too, compared to mine. Both kids said it was good. RM5.90 per plate.

Not cheap considering the price but at least I give it a try.  They have economy rice too. Dishes look very home-cooked. Should not be too expensive, I assume.

If anyone interested to try this place, it is situated at Stapok-Sky Garden junction. It is pretty easy to be spotted with its big banner on the road side.

Friday, March 20, 2015

As simple as that

Did not go out much over the school holiday. Warm weather and I were super lazy to drive under the crazy weather and jam. 

This afternoon I cooked a simple fried rice for lunch since there was leftover rice from last night's dinner.

My fried rice consists of these simple ingredients such as minced garlic, sliced shallot, sliced sausages, chopped long beans and egg.

Just toss in garlic and shallot into heated oil. Fry till they are fragrant and then add in sliced sausages. Fry for few seconds before adding in chopped long beans.

After a minute, break an egg into the pan. Let it cook for few seconds before break and cut the egg into smaller pieces.

Mix all ingredients in the pan then add in the white rice. Mix well and break any rice lumps. Dash in white pepper, salt and light soy sauce to taste. Mix well and dish the fried rice out.

Simple, right? Tasty and appetizing too!

And for a side dish, I grilled a black pomfret using my flip pan. Just rub some salt and white pepper onto the fish, leave for few minutes and grill it. 5 minutes on each side before flipping over and then repeat another time on both side. Sweet, soft, flaky, yummy and healthier than deep frying it.

That was my simple lunch.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Pretty & Yummy

I love a refreshing fruit salad on a warm day. I make it a habit to prepare at least 1 fruit serving for the kids every day. Some day it is dragon fruit, other day is oranges while red apples on another day.

The other day, I saw these super beautiful grapes and strawberries in the supermarket so could not resist buying them home.

Immediately I prepared my fruits delight. I could not resist combining my strawberries and grapes in a fruit salad - a refreshing dessert on its own or over a scoop of ice cream.

Lovely bowl of fruit salad, don't you think so? And the kids love it as they keep forking up the sliced fruits.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A tonic after illness

Bird's nest is one of Chinese delicacies and there are 3 types of bird's nests : white, blood and feather. The white one is the best of all. It is useful to ease coughing, fatigue and diarrhoea. And it is believes to help the body to recuperate after illnesses and hence it is a tonic for our bodies.

I have a pack of bird's nest from the CNY hamper so I used up one piece over the weekend. We also have some unprocessed bird's nests that we bought from my SIL that are full of feathers and impurities that I have no time to clean and use yet. Another day for that.

Very simple to prepare the bird's nest. I just soak for an hour or so. I used some big red dates too. About 6 red dates.

Toss the washed red dates and bird's nest in slow cooker and put on high heat. Let it cook for 3 hours. 

Off the slow cooker, toss in a lump of rock sugar to taste. Give it a stir and let the rock sugar melt before serve it warm or cold.

You can add a knot of 2 pandan leaves (screwpine leaves) together with the bird's nest like what I did here to give that fragrant taste.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Closer at hand

Heard that she is a daughter-in-law of the famous Kuching Kolo mee in Green road. I am not so sure but what I can be sure of is that she serves good kolo mee and other noodles.

The famous Green road's kolo mee is this shop. The middle shop that faced Chong Lin Plaza. It has been there for ages. A family business.

Photo credit from here

I usually bring my kids for a kolo mee breakfast at this so-called Green road kolo mee stall in Big One Food Court, MJC on almost every Saturdays before their swimming lesson. It is close from our house; less than 5 minutes drive and the service is faster. If want to eat at Green Road, it usually packed, hard to find a table and a long waiting time.

Even that it is school holiday now, the kids will still wake up early than what I wanted. Like this morning, the kids were up around 7am and only when Jan and Jay entered my room, I were woken up by their noises. Usually they will switch on the tv in the family hall and watched without disturbing my sleep but when they are hungry, they will wake me up for their breakfast. So, this morning, without fail, we went to Big One Food Court for kolo mee breakfast.

The kids love her kolo mee very much. I usually ordered the white one (with no red char siew sauce) for the kids. RM3 per bowl.

Jan and Jay can finish their own bowl of kolo mee by themselves.

Sometimes I will go for kolo mihun with kiaw (meat dumplings). RM5.00 for this bowl of goodness. Could not have enough of the kiaw and the minced meat. Really delicious and bowl-licking good!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Weekend Menu #66: Fish maw soup

I have not been cooking much lately. Not on a weekend! Even if I cook, I will usually whip up simple dishes for myself and kids. Kids-friendly meals I would called them. 

However hubby was home over the weekend so I put on my cooking cap and cooked this soup. One of my favourite soups when growing up and ordered when dine outside. I have been planning to finish up a pack of fish maw during CNY but did not manage to do so. 

I love fish maw. I considered it one of the auspicious dish during CNY. I love it in my clear soup, in mixed vegetable dishes and even in stew. So I whipped up a simple fish maw soup over the weekend. Hope you like this version too.

I used this Chilean abalone from one of the CNY hampers for this dish.

That is how it looks like. Whiter than those from China. My other ingredients as following.

I did not have any measurement for my ingredients; everything "pakai hentam". 

Fish maw, soaked for an hour and then slice to smaller pieces
A handful of fishballs
8 big prawns with shells intact 
Chicken breast meat, sliced
3 Shitake mushrooms, soaked and sliced
1 Chilean abalone, washed, soaked and sliced
3 slices ginger
Pinch of salt and dash of light soy sauce
1/4 tbsp of dark soy sauce (optional)
1 cube of Maggi chicken stock
1 litre water

1. Add chicken stock into a pot of water and bring to boil. 
2. Add fish maw, abalone and ginger into the pot. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Add chicken, mushrooms and dark soy sauce into the pot. Simmer for another 3 minutes before add in prawns and fish balls. Add salt and light soy sauce.
4. Simmer for another 3 minutes before turn off the heat.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

A little celebration

Not really a celebration of anyone's birthday or something like that. It was just a little "selamat" dinner after me and Jay recovered from our HFMD ordeal. It has been a week since I were down with the virus and thank the Almighty for our speedy recovery.

Last night we went to Sharing Planet in Stapok for our dinner. And a little treat for Jan who had her school's trial exam and obtained good result.

School holiday has began. So I guess that was few reasons to celebrate last night.

For Jan, she celebrated with this Fish N Chips. She missed it when she had it few months back. Jay had some of it too. However as precaution, we divided our food and distributed into our individual plates. Learnt something from the HFMD!! ;)

Hubby ordered this Garden Salad which surprised us when it arrived. Humongous portion of vegetables! 

We also ordered this plate of Jumbo Sausages for the kids. I had a bite and it was good.

And for me, I got to try out this Supreme De'Vollaille. An interesting chicken dish indeed.

It is a double portion of sliced cheese, chicken ham and crispy grilled chicken, so it was very filling for me. I enjoyed it though with its mushroom sauce at the side. If only they could change the coleslaw to something else as it was wet and made the fries soggy.

I forgot to take a shot of the last dish which was grilled lamb cutlets. Hubby's favourite but we still think the best we had was in Sibu from the Fisherman's Restaurant. The lamb cutlets in Sharing Planet was well marinated but rather tough. We waited for more than 20 minutes for the lamb cutlets after all the other dishes arrived and started to wonder what went wrong with the lambs.

Overall it was a delightful dinner. Something that we enjoyed as a family where everyone was together.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Miscellaneous Picture #36: my childhood

During my sickness, I had a moment of time where I were looking through old photo albums and reminiscing about my childhood.

I particularly love this one. An old photograph of me and my younger siblings posing with my dad's old car in front of my maternal grandparents' old house in Kenyalang Park. 

Can anyone from Kuching recognise where is this location by looking at the background? 

I could not be more than 13 years old that time. My sis should be same age as my Jan that time. I were pretty skinny when I were young but as I hit puberty, I were curvier and more on the fleshy type. I am the shortest and fattest among my siblings!

One of my most favourite food during my childhood is this porridge cooked by my mum. Cuttlefish porridge. Mum cooked it almost every fortnight as I could remember. My dad loved (and still do) to eat this porridge so he would always requested mum to cook for suppers. 

For recipe, click here.

Do you love looking through old photo albums? What is your favourite childhood's food?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

"Ouch!" is an understatement

It could not be any worse than what we have been through. 

It has been nothing but painful and miserable days lately when I was contracted HFMD from Jayden last Saturday.

Feet is in pain when walking. All my toes are swollen and cannot bend at all. I feel like a penguin, wobbling around or limping my way through. It takes a lot of strength and will-power to walk up and down the staircases. Even a challenge when I get to carry Jamie around. I could not sleep well on 1st night because of my painful feet.

Hands are very sensitive when in contact with hot stuff. Painful when touch and hold things.

I did not wear any gloves but keep my hands clean at all times by washing and using hand sanitiser. Lost counts of how many times I wash my hands!!

I did wore socks on the first night in bed but during the days, I wore home slippers around the house.

Mum asked me to try this Chinese natural remedy using green beans. She heard that people take them and heal faster.

Green beans are great property in detox and cooling. I needed to crush the beans so I used my pestle to do so. Then toss a spoonful of crushed beans in a mug. Add some salt to it. Add lukewarm water and stir. Using a strainer, I pour the content into another mug. I drank the water.  I drank this few times a day other than the powder medicine that the Chinese physician prescribed to me.

I am blessed to have my mil around during this difficult time. She came down from Kapit to be with me on Sunday afternoon, help me with Jan and Jamie, and house chore. Really ease my burden.

And dad and mum who help me with Jay and also come to send and pick Jan from school this 2 days.

As of now, I am getting better and it is less painful. Now my feet has started to feel itchy and I am trying not to scratch. Able to walk around in normal pace and do my chore. I got back some senses to my fingers unlike first 2 days where it was painful and numb.

I could not wait till the the day I can go out freely and enjoy myself. Sigh! 

Saturday, March 7, 2015

The first time

No. This was not my first time at this 8 Way Restaurant as I have been there a couple of times for dinner. Coincidentally the taukeynio who open this restaurant is from Sibu and I used to buy take-away from her coffee shop in Rejang Park.

This was our first time celebrating Chap Goh Mei without hubby's presence. Kind of miss him on this special occasion. 

So we joined my family's side for dinner on Thursday night.

The roasted chicken has never failed to impress the kids. Not too dry and tough and went well with the salt and lime dipping.

We also had this fried fu yong omelette. We asked for a small portion but it came out too big and we could not finished it. Initially ordered for my kids but end up they were busy digging into the roasted chicken.

Dad's favourite dish - yam basket with mixed vegetables. The basket was good, I like it.

As for this steamed fish, it was fresh but the sauce was rather salty. And so was this deep fried prawn!! Nice coating and I could eat the whole prawns including the shells but need to eat with rice. Too salty for my taste bud.

A little update on Jay. He agreed to stay overnight in my parents' house after the Chap Goh Mei dinner. So for the first time, he is staying with my parents. Kind of miss him. The house was rather quiet without him but I think it is the best to separate him from other kids.

We brought him to a famous Chinese physician on Thursday and the physician confirmed few spots in his mouth. Just starting to shown in his mouth so he has felt no pain. He eats well. Actually eat much better than normal day, I am surprised. ;)

Went to his kindergarden yesterday to collect his school works. He was happy to do some work when passed his school bag to him yesterday.

He is getting better and the rashes have turned dark and should be gone soon. 

Get well soon, Jay. 

On a bad note, I woke up this morning and noticed some red spots on soles and palms. And feel pain when walking and on my hands too. Immediately went to see doctor and confirmed that I am down with HFMD! Oh God! What a month of sickness landed upon us!! :(