Thursday, December 27, 2012

Stimulating baby's right brain - DarwishDarwisya's Method

The easiest way to stimulate your baby's right brain..

TV!!

One of the most powerful technology in hypnotizing your mind.

The ones that define everything. That has the most powerful influence to your children, unfortunately.

I'm sure subliminal messages in Disney were not something new to us.


Tangled

The Little Mermaid

The Lion King

Some critics said "it was your mind that has been programmed and hypnotised at one time or another in your life to think that they were dirty or going to be dirty drawings".

Yeah, sure.

Go ahead, take a look at this youtube video, "Naughty Cartoon Drawings".

Then, pause and wonder. Is it safe, those cartoons you let your children watch.

Such a scary world.

So, while you can control what they can or cannot watch, let's just introduce them to something very safe, no hanky panky. My choice at the moment..

Very boring you might say. But if you introduce this early to your children, way before Spongebob and Upin Ipin, this will be the ONLY entertaining thing they know. (Btw, Spongebob also has subliminal message, please google :( )

I might be a bit late. By the time I introduced this to Spiderbaby, she was already obsessed with a ridiculous show called, "High-5". Everytime I watched that with her, I went like, "Seriously??"

But, after a while, she found Al-Furqan VCD interesting and almost every day, when I got home, she would bring me the CD and asked me to play it for her.

Whether it helps or not, in terms of her learning capability, I am not able to assess just as yet. But for me personally, why not educate while entertain.

My choice after Al-Furqan..


Monday, December 24, 2012

Khaira at 14 mo!

Sekarang ni setiap hari excited nak pulang!! :)

Spiderbaby learns new things everyday.

Nearing 13mo, at work, all of a sudden mom messaged me, "Kak, Khaira dah boleh jalan."



And when I arrived home, she walked like a tiny dinosaur, tangan kat depan, 5 steps then she fell down. And clap her hands. That was the beginning. About a month after, dah berlari. Very handful nowadays.

Then, a couple of days after that, she started to recognize things in her baby books. Things like "banana", "apple", "baby", etc. Managed to record a video there.

Then, I started teaching her to show her tummy, eyes, nose. Masya Allah, kids are very fast learners.

Now macam-macam benda comel Khaira buat, would like to write it here for my keepsake. Among the most adorable ones..

1. "No, no, no, no, no" dengan gesture tangan yg sangat comel!
2. "Jap! Jap" Again dengan gesture tangan and kepala hangguk2.
3. "Khaira, nanny masak apa?" Tarik nafas. "Kaghi." Pause. "Ayom" (referring to Kari Ayam). Some other days. "Ambal" (referring to sambal)

And yes, she can say 2 words already. "Nak air", "Bye, Ayah Ngah" at 14 mo.:)

Excited nak balik rumah every day!!

Anyhow, this youtube pages are dedicated for my little angel. Only God knows how much I love her.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Life oh life

Life has been very ironic for Love and I these couple of days.

To cut the story short, we recently found out that Love's car that he bought from a dealer, Mazmi Syah bin Mohamed Munzani (IC num: 791105-01-5377) was somewhat stolen. He faked the signature for the transaction. Hence, the transaction of the car was not valid :( Eventhough the name of the grant has already been changed to ours, JPJ has the power to change it back. We filed a police report towards the dealer already, doakan yang terbaik. Orang yang teraniya insya Allah dimakbulkan.

I can only imagine what Love is going through currently. He has the power of letting go, insya Allah.. everything will turn up just fine for the both of us.

But, remember that when Allah closes one door for us, He opens another. On a brighter note, I was at the peak of my career yesterday (Still on cloud 9 today :))

Received a call from one of the big people in the biggest industry of my field. They came and visited my lab yesterday. They were REALLY interested in my project, Alhamdulillah. And I received one of the best offer I could imagine. Alhamdulillah. :) The highest peak of my career.

Who would have thought all these years, someone really appreciates and follows my work. It feels good to be appreciated after a while :) Such a good news for both of us.

But all these are too overwhelming for Love and I. We decided to go out for a supper with Spiderbaby to take a break from all the madness. But after feeding Spiderbaby last night, for what seems like months, she fell asleep after Maghrib, boleh? As if saying, "go Ibu and Abi, you needed this."

Went for a piece of cake at Secret Recipe near our place. And we just talked and laughed. And I began to understand what Love meant when he said,

"Regardless of whatever happens in our life, as long as we have each other, things will be just fine.."

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Big bad wolf 2012 - a review

Went to BBW 2012 a week after it started. And ohhh goodness, my first to many visits after this inysa Allah :)

My verdict: Very well organized! Books are placed according to genre. I went like, 'romance' - lame! 'Science fiction' - done with it. 'Young adults' - errr???

Books I bought..


Didn't take much time for me to decide on what I want. I didn't go scrutinizing each book, because the obvious ones are tempting enough.

First went to the Bestseller section, and just had to buy ''The Lost Symbol" by Dan Brown, of which I've been visiting multiple times to MPH to buy this book but ended up buying something else, rezeki sungguh. Price = RM8.

Then, saw the only Jeffrey Archer's I could find - "Paths of Glory", never read his work before. Bought this after I have been recommended by almost everyone. Price = RM 8.

Fell in love with this one, which I never heard of before, "Her fearful symmetry" from the author of Time traveller's wife, simply because I love this movie so much. Price = RM8.

Then to Self Help, very disappointing. It's like a compilation of Self Books I never wish to read. Except there's "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell, which I already have them in my Self Help collection.

So, to Memoirs section, and found "Donald Trump: Think like a champion" which I have been wanting to buy for quite sometimes. Price = RM10.

Books Love bought..



Love doesn't read. Period. Except about cars.

He bought his "Porsche The Ultimate Guide" for RM12, which I can assure the only time he is ever going to read it is either in the toilet or while waiting for his flight if outstation.

And he bought another book "More show me how" for RM15 which honestly, I don't categorize it as a book. Just a manual with compilation of beautiful pictures in it.

For everybody else..

I must say the best section is the Children section. Grab these in less than 10 minutes while browsing through. Read along Curious George with CD for RM8 and Kai Lan activity book with crayons for RM6.


These are in the Dummy section. "Natural Childbirth" for RM10 and "Cooking For Two" for RM8.

So, altogether we spent a total of RM103 for 11 books in less than an hour, can you beat that?

It's a must go again event that I totally stamp on! Very well organize, comfortable and the place is big, so you don't feel crowded at all.

As of now, 80 more pages to be done with "What the Dog Saw", 10 more books waiting for me at home. Tak sabar tak sabar tak sabar!!! :)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Co-sleep no more!

Dear Khaira Asyikin,

You're a big girl now! At 14 months, you no longer co-sleep with Ibu :)

We were sometimes worried, Khaira. At a year old, you were still behaving like a baby. You would wake up every 2 hours (Lucky cases, else every hour) to feed at night, you need your rest.

Abi said because you were too close to me and the smell of my milk made you distracted.

I did not argue with that. So, Ibu and Abi tried slowly to separate the bed, though my initial intention was to do that when you were 2.

I first tried to breastfeed you until you fell asleep, then I would carry you to your baby cot. But, it did not work. You would cry, and started to breastfeed again, and it was more tiring for both of us.

Last weekend, you developed an allergy towards tomato. Rashes caused you to have sleepless nights. I had even more sleepless nights, causing me to catch a flu on the third day. The flu worsened until I sneezed non-stop at 3 am, and decided to sleep separately from you to avoid the virus.

To my surprise, you sleep like a baby until the next day.

Since my flu persisted until the next day, I thought it was a sign. So that night, we put your bed next to Ibu and Abi's bed, and I breastfed you at your bed until you fell asleep. Then, I went to my own bed, it was better. You slept like a baby and woke up only one time to feed. And when I climbed into my bed, you were already in deep sleep by then.

Last night was day 2. You woke up in the middle of the night to feed, startled I was not next to you, quickly searched for me and immediately climbed into Ibu's bed. Saddd.. :( But I have to be strong, I can't be that clingy with you, kay. Else, I would make life harder for you in the future.

So, I held you gently and fed you to sleep. Held you a little longer and took that courage to climb up to my bed again.

It's for the best, Khaira Asyikin. You need a better sleep. And if you need anything, I'm still next to you, still wakes up at every moves you made and still holds you at every sounds you produced.. :)

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Informal teaching with flashcard - DarwishDarwisya's Method

Overwhelming responses to my previous post of flashcard :) Thank you, peeps!

Some shared on the flashcard apps like Superflashcard!! Check this one outt!!

Khaira's milk mother shared on the gorgeous flashcard she did by herself, Masya Allah :)


Some asked whether it's really working. Wallahualam. But this is the chart of our brain growth from baby to adult.

It grows rapidly from 0 - 6 years old, where at 6 y.o, it reaches to about 80% of the adult's brain already. Why not just try to put in Al-Quran at this very early stage, insya Allah. I have faith that benda baik mesti dimudahkan.

Anyway, for Selangor, it's a public holiday this Tuesday, yay!! I'm going to Big Bad Wolf with my Big Friendly Giant, then later for a movie, just the two of us. :) Super excited!!

But, if you don't have plans yet, perhaps you can spend your day as what I have been spending my couple of weekends ago..





Sticking the flashcards everywhere around the house. Now 'homer' looks like a nursery already!

As I mentioned in the earlier post, I have 5 sets of flashcard.

One set I hung them everywhere in my room in mom's place.

One set I hung at homer.

One set for Spiderbaby to bite and chew.

One set for me to teach her formally.

One set in my handbag.

So, why stick them everywhere?

Very simple, every time I bring her to the fridge, I would say, "ha", then when I open the door I say "ba". Everything is subconscious, because she would look at the hijaiyah alphabets everywhere she goes. Every time I passed by the alphabets, I would pronounce them to her. So, she would be more familiar with the alphabets, until the day comes when she recognizes the alphabets. I would then ask her to pronounce them for me every time I open the fridge or door or etc.

Learning for babies need repetition. Because they learn too many things in a day, they might forget others.

And why do I have a set of hijaiyah alphabet in my handbag?

 Actually, to be honest, I'm just about to start with this one. Insya Allah, baby steps. But according to Puan Lina, this is especially useful for the alphabet that is hard to pronounce.

When you go out, while looking over a beautiful garden or playground, introduce one alphabet that is hard to pronounce and pronounce it for your baby while showing the flashcards.

Repetitively, then insya Allah your baby will get use to it :)

That is all the sharing session for the day! Happy public holidaying! :) Next session insya Allah on stimulating your baby's right brain.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Formal teaching with flashcard - DarwishDarwisya's Method

"Ibu said she refused to take her nap today," Dad updated me on Spiderbaby's daily report as I reached home from work yesterday.

"Khaira Asyikinnnn, whyyyyy???" I said in a dramatic way, looking over that round big eyes of hers. She giggled hysterically, showing off eight teeth, which every time I looked at them I wonder, why the gaps???

"She slept eventually.. only after Ibu turned on her radio playing the Quran," Dad continued. Masya Allah. Alhamdulillah. Just a week ago I introduced her to the sound of Quran before she sleeps and now she refuses to sleep without it. Alhamdulillah :) May Khaira Asyikin digests all the surahs that she sleeps with, insya Allah. Ameen. And thank you mom, for continuing to play the Quran for Spiderbaby after Alif started his first real job yesterday.

After Dad wrapped up on his updates of Spiderbaby, I said to Khaira, "Give me 10 minutes ok, Ibu wants to take a bath for a while, then we'll start our lesson for the day, ok." This statement never fails to piss my dad off EVERYTIME. Because Spiderbaby would reply this statement with a cry, refusing to let me go. She gets clingy every time I left her for work.

But I couldn't bear, leaving my baby without any notification and reassurance that I will be back. I sure wouldn't want her to do the same to me, so marilah berlaku adil. ;p Furthermore, I want her to be mentally prepared for her flashcard lesson after I'm done freshen up.

So, to the flashcard lesson..

Why flashcard?

I know.. I know.. I was a bit skeptical on flashcard at first. I thought it was messy. I thought who needs flashcards when you have books? Of course, that was before I was blessed with a daughter who was so eager to look at the rest of the pages of the book other than the page I was teaching (T_T)

For the flashcard, I used the ones given in the seminar, by IPN. Because I got them for free and because my intention for the flashcards is to just introduce the alphabets, the rest insya Allah using books. Some of my friends are using the ones from Al Furqan. According to Pn. Lina, the differences are:
1. IPN consists of all hijaiyah's alphabets, Al Furqan only selected.
2. IPN consists of only "Aa, Ba, Ta..". Al Furqan consits of "Aa, Ii, Uu.."

IPN's flashcard, can get it from here

Regardless of any flashcards, the most important thing is how you teach your children using them. The content below is from the various reading I read from the net, so thank you Uncle Google. I'm going to compile everything I read so that you can understand it easily.

There are actually two different metods of using flashcard; Shichida's method and Glen Doman's method

Shichida's method
  • Flashcard is shown as fast as possible a.k.a speed flashing.
  • Training exercise for the right brain, to activate photographic memory.
  • The practice is to flash 200 cards in three minutes.
Glen Doman's method
  • Flashcard is shown slowly so the children can capture how to pronounce the word.
  • Training exercise for the left brain.
  • One flashcard is shown in about 15 seconds.

The method used by Pn. Lina is Glen Doman's method. Because, babies are born with right brain capability, so it's important to teach them how to use the left brain. And also because, televisions are fast, so they can exercise their right brain using TV.

As for me, I used both method. First, I showed Spiderbaby the Glen Doman's method, then I sum everything with Shichida's method. Because from my reading, "..as the left brain develops, that is, as the child grows older, it becomes harder to develop natural abilities of the right brain." Wallahualam, jadi guna jelah both methods.

It takes only about 5 minutes of my hectic schedule, really. After freshen up, I made sure by 8.30pm, I would be alone with Spiderbaby, no TV, no toy, no radio, nothing. Just Spiderbaby, flashcards and I. It's important to maintain the same time, so that Spiderbaby (and I) would be both physically and mentally prepared for the lesson.

I would have two sets of flashcards with me. One set for her to play around with, to chew, to bite, to make a mess. Let it be. According to Pn. Lina, they have to touch the alphabets to satisfy their curiosity, then only they can be interested with it.

Then, another set would be for me to flash to her. Every week I would have a set of 5 different alphabets to teach her. I started with the vocabs that she always used. As for Spiderbaby, she loves to use, "Aa, Ba, Ma, Na, Ya". So, every day for the whole week, I would spend 15 seconds for every alphabet. Put the flashcard near my mouth, while exaggeratingly pronounce the alphabet, so that she knows how to move her mouth to make that sound. Then, I would flash her all the alphabets very fast before I ended up her session for the day. 5 minutes, done.

The following week, I would change to a different set of 5 alphabets, for my case, I used, "Ta, Sa, Wa, Ja, Da". So by the weekend, I would then repeat the two different sets to her altogether, "Aa, Ba, Ma, Na, Ya," then, "Ta, Sa, Wa, Ja, Da" for her to refresh as has been done by Pn. Lina. So, on weekends the lesson is a bit longer. But maximum, 10 minutes.

Of course, being very active as she usually is, she never sits still. I used to worry a lot on her concentration level. After seeing how Pn. Lina taught Darwish, I am more at peace. So, I would let Spiderbaby climbed the bed, played with the other flashcards, hid under the bed, sometimes not even looking at the flashcards. Patience. That's the key.

The first day, she wouldn't even look, what more to pronounce. The next day, she started to repeat after me, and at the end of the week, she managed to repeat the whole set of alphabets, is yet to recognize them. It's ok, move on to the next set before she got bored. This needs repetition. Insya Allah, I would repeat the sets again and again until Spiderbaby masters all the alphabets. I'm at peace there. Let her move at her own pace.

So, that's how you use your flashcard for teaching. Next entry insya Allah, I will share with you how to use them informally. Doalah diberi lebih kekuatan untuk berkongsi, Ameen.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The radio - DarwishDarwisya's method

Guess what we did after DarwishDarwisya's seminar?


Cendol by the road.. :) Of course, while evaluating back our parenting and discussing on our way forward.

We realized, we have to start now, while the momentum is there. Despite of being both mentally and physically tired after the seminar, we gather all our strength to hunt for a portable radio although we had to be at the airport by 11pm to meet up MIL before she headed back to Korea.

So what's up with the portable radio?

Pn. Lina (a.k.a mother of DarwishDarwisya) played the 30 surahs of Juz Amma to her babies from the womb (babies develop the ability to listen since they are 5 months old in the womb) until now everyday. During play, during travelling in the car, etc.

Why?

This is what I mean when I said she's a sub-conscious junkie like me. When I learned about hypnotizing, one of the key points is REPETITION. Have you ever encountered a day, when you remember to climb into your car and the next thing you know is that you're already in front of your office. You don't have any memory of thinking about the route because you're using the route everyday, it becomes a norm to you.

I guess the same concept applies to Darwish and Darwisya. After 3 years of listening to the same surahs everyday, they must have listened to them for about 1000 times already and the hafazan becomes effortless. They have been hypnotized with the Quran, Alhamdulillah.

I tried that on Spiderbaby recently. Was very easy whenever I was around. But since I'm leaving her with mom during work, I tried very slowly so that mom won't think I'm obsessed. At the same time, I don't want to burden her. So, I played it very gently and subtly. Insya Allah.. Benda baik kan, so just have faith :)

What about the surahs Wisya's memorized after Juz Amma?

Her technique is very simple. Juz Amma is played only during the day. When her children were about to sleep, she would play selected surahs she wanted the children to memorize after Juz Amma. These children play with Al Quran, sleep with Al Quran, Masya Allah.

What's the benefit of sleeping with Al-Quran?

My supervisor always tells me to sleep with my PhD research. Also in Islam, one of the best time to give advices to our children is during the time when she was just about to go into deep sleep. That moment, when I learned during hypnotizing, is the moment when you put an information to someone, they will sleep with it, dream with it, put it into their subconscious mind and when they wake up the next day, they would remember about the last thing they think before they sleep. In this case, the Quran.

I remember some days when I was really tired at night. Sometimes couldn't help but complaining, Astaghfirullah. Spiderbaby was born since she was birthed, to wake up every hour until she was about 6 months old. Until now, she was like a baby, would wake up every 2 or 2 hours and a half almost every night. Challenging in that sense, other than that, she is a super easy baby.

But now I am really thankful. I would play the selected surahs throughout the night, because she would wake up multiple times and she has more times to absorb the Quran to her subconscious mind. Everything happens for a reason, Allah SWT the almighty! :)

There are of course many Qari you can find nowadays, which one to choose?

According to Pn. Lina, the ones that we like during pregnancy might make the baby loves it too. My choice - Syeikh Masyari Rashid Al-Afaasi for surah pilihan.

Juz Amma, I used this one..

Simply because I got it for free during the seminar and because I want to vary.

Pray for me to be given the strength to share on flashcards later on!



Sunday, November 25, 2012

Goldcoast, Morib

It was Love's birthday, yesterday. I stole him for a short get-away at Goldcoast, Morib.

Funny story though. I bought the deal from mydeal, read the T&C carefully, called the number and asked whether it's okay if I checked in on the 17th Nov, 5 days before Love's birthday and she said okay. So, when I tried to book after I bought the voucher, suddenly they said there's a surcharge if I checked in any day  that is not on the birthday or not a day before or after the date. And of course, it's written in the T&C of the voucher (which I can only read after I bought and received the voucher) which differs than the T&C I read earlier. Whatever.. My first and last ok.

Anyway, the get-away was super fun. Our room had the nicest view, looking over the theme park.


The theme park was fun though, the entry for adults = RM20, for children = RM10. It was worth it. Khaira had fun for a while..


..10 minutes after, she was shivering cold. Lucky there's a small dry place for her to play..


But, we still wanted her to play with the water. Luckily there's a Jacuzzi inside the room. That was the best part. The hotel room was so-so, actually. Just the bathroom was marvelous. Khaira had super fun. Love even slept for like an hour in the Jacuzzi, apparently that's the only bath tub that can fit him. (T_T)


Dinner was good :) More than I expected.

The only pic of the three of us and I don't like this pic, semua muke tak ready :(

After dinner, Love received his gift, cake and certificate from the hotel.


All in all, it was a cycle. Love and Khaira happy = I'm super happy.

Happy birthday, Sayang. It was fun!! May we have an even more wonderful year ahead of us, with Spiderbaby around. Thank you for everything you've done to us. I'm forever blessed to have you as my husband. Whee!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

We are having our UPSR next year! ;p

Happy 11 year anniversary, Love! :)

If we were born the day we were together, we are in Standard 5 already this year. Haha!

Too hectic for any fancy celebration, work overloads!

But, but.. love still needs to be celebrated! Tomorrow we are going to Goldcoast everyone!!

Ehh.. bukan ke ticker kat atas tu said it would be 5 months lagi?

Tu Goldcoast, Aussie. Kite pergi Goldcoast, Morib je lah esok! Yay!!

*Holiday mood on*



Monday, November 19, 2012

The start of Iraq war based on a picture?

An excerpt from 'The Picture Problem' in 'What the dog saw and other adventures' by Malcolm Gladwell.


In February 2002, just before the start of the Iraq war, the Secretary of State Colin Powell went before he United Nations to declare that Iraq was in defiance of international law. He presented transcripts of telephone conversations between senior Iraqi military officials, purportedly discussing attempts to conceal weapons of mass destruction. He told of eyewitness accounts of mobile-biological weapons facilities. And, most persuasive, he presented a series of images - carefully annotated, high-resolution satellite photographs of what he said was the Taji Iraqi chemical-munitions facility.

"Let me say a word about satellite images before I show a couple," Powell began. "The photos that I'm about to show you are sometimes hard for the average person to interpret, hard for me. The painstaking work of photo analysis takes experts with years and years of experience, poring for hours and hours over light tables. But as I show you these images, I will try to capture and explain what they mean, what they indicate, to our imagery specialists." The first photograph was dated November 10, 2002, just three months earlier, and years after the Iraqi was supposed to have rid themselves of all weapons of mass destruction. "Let me give you a closer look," Powell said as he flipped to a closeup of the first photograph. It showed a rectangular building, with a vehicle parked next to it. "Look at the image on the left. On the left is a closeup of one of the four chemical bunkers. The two arrows indicate the presence of sure signs that the bunkers are storing chemical munitions. The arrow at the top says 'Security' points to a facility that is a signature item for this kind of bunker. Inside that facility are special guards and special equipment to monitor for any leakage that might come out of the bunker." Then he moved to the vehicle next to the building. It was, he said, another signature item. "It's a decontamination vehicle in case something gone wrong.. It is moving around those four and it moves as needed to move as people are working in the different bunkers."

Powell's analysis assumed, of course, that you could tell from the picture what kind of truck it was. But pictures of trucks, taken above, are not always clear as we would like; sometimes truck hauling oil tanks look just like trucks hauling Scud launchers, and, while a picture is a good start, if you really want to know what you're looking at, you probably need more than a picture. I looked at the photographs with Patrick Eddington, who for many years was an imagery analyst with the CIA. Eddington examined them closely. "They're trying to say that those are decontamination vehicles," he told me. He had a photo up on his laptop, and he peered closer to get a better look. "But the resolution is sufficient for me to say that I don't think it is - and I don't see any other decontamination vehicles down there that I would recognize." The standard decontamination vehicle was a Soviet-made box-body van, Eddington said. This truck was too long. For a second opinion, Eddington recommended Ray McGovern, a 27 year CIA analyst, who had been one of George H. W. Bush's personal intelligence briefers when he was vice president. "If you're an expert, you can tell one hell of a lot from pictures like this," McGovern said. He's heard another interpretation. "I think," he said, "that it's a fire truck."

Friday, November 16, 2012

Mockery of the highest order

"When we heard Obama's victory speech last week, most would be touched by the humbleness and sincerity.. but when we look at the Palestinian plight then we see a mockery of that at the highest order.."

So said my supervisor, I couldn't agree more.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A story not to be judged

A dear friend came up to me one evening, very subtly putting things in my mind, testing the water. I've been through this before. And finally she confessed,

"I've an affair with somebody's husband."

...

"Don't judge me."

"I'm not!" Yes, truth is I was not. I was too busy judging the guy actually, and their marriage.

There will be some times in your life, you couldn't help but reflecting yourself and relating all the stories you heard. There must be a reason why she talked about this to me. And a reason why I heard about this from her.

See, it works both ways. Perhaps I was sent from the above to help her. And she was sent from the above as a reminder to me.

"What made him attracted to you?" I asked.

The usual answer. Wife is a successful lady in her career. Too intelligent to impress whatever he has to say about his works. My friend is way younger and of course intelligent successful man tends to be charismatic to her.

Noted. Big bold caps lock statement in my head.

"So what now?"

"I want to get out, but I don't know how. What do you think?"

"Honestly, if you stay, you're breaking your own heart. Would you stay knowing that with someone else you'll always be that someone's priority."

"But he did things for me that I don't think I can find in other guys."

Old habits are like that. Very hard to get away from the familiarity you have, very scared to walk to uncertainty, paranoid to lose what you thought was the best, but that's life. If you stop the adventure, you stop life.

"Baby steps ok."

But yesterday, about two weeks after she decided to tell me the whole thing, from the hardest time to even make the decision to walk away, she took a giant step to stop everything and walk out of it straight away.

A win win win situation. I could not be prouder.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shortcuts

Shortcuts, don't we all love them?

What is not to like?

It saves time, it's efficient, much shorter way to get to the destination.

But, life is not a shortcut.. Like it or not.

You need to wander around, make mistakes, get lost once in a while, in order for you to be sure and to remember the correct path to the destination.

The same applies to research life.

If you think you can do a research via shortcut, don't bother calling yourself a researcher, seriously.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Sinister

I have an obsession with..

..a real life..

serial killer :(

I know.. I know.. Please don't judge me.

It all started with Zodiac the killer. Then after years, I found my shelf started to fill up with some serial killer books and I was glued on documentary about them and at one time, I had to stop myself from finding out about them when I was pregnant.

Such obsession that I was not at all proud of.

I found it mind stimulating about how they managed to deceit the police; on how they teased them, I mean come on.. Are you not challenged by this??




I guess, when I read/watched about them, I am more focused on the clues they left behind. Or the covering up they did, such genius people, but for the wrong purpose.

But after watching 'Sinister' yesterday, my glass shattered. I never actually imagined 'how', always 'why' they killed their victims.


And the 'how' is really sickening! Made me dizzy the whole day yesterday.

Oh what a way to end my date with Love.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Khaira's first year food review

As some of you might already know, Khaira Asyikin was born a colicky baby as similar to me. As she reached 6 months old, she could better tolerate my milk, except when I ate sticky rice (pulut) of all kind be it tapai, or even lemang, then the three of us would have a sleepless night. But the new challenge was that we had to introduce her solid. And here are some guidelines for parents who are having colicky baby like ours.

Khaira started to eat solid a couple of days before she turned 6 months. Due to her condition, we followed the three days rule strictly. We first introduced her to banana. Then, we introduced her to brown rice. Just brown rice; no fruits whatsoever.

Bear in mind though, that wholesome food is more gassy than the white ones. Thus, after three days of having brown rice, we mixed them with white rice. Later we added barley, and a few days later, Khaira ate a combination of white rice + brown rice + barley + oat.

Barley help reduce cholesterol levels 

This rice combination is actually a Korean's culture, where they would put a lot of other combinations in the rice such as sticky rice, beans, nuts, even sometimes sunflower seed. I found it a brilliant idea when I had them at my MIL's place, less carbs = more nutritions = happy :)

Since I'm working, what I do is that during the weekends, I would wash the white rice, brown rice and barley, let them dry. Mix them together with oat and blend for a week's stock and store them in a refrigerator. This way, I would be able to cook the porridge in less than 20 minutes.

Until Khaira was 8 months old, she was a vegetarian. I wanted her digestive system to work slowly. I gave her all the fruits that she could tolerate; from my observations: Dates, honeydew, banana, papaya and grapes. But she doesn't fancy grapes that much. As of vegetables, she could tolerate carrot, zucchini, salad, cauliflower, and spinach. She doesn't fancy spinach that much.

Banana can diminish the uncomfortable effects of diarrhea and constipation

After 8 months, I started to introduce fish and tofu. Her favourites are Siakap and Salmon. I introduced Siakap, Salmon, Merah, Tenggiri, Dory, and Senangin. She ate three times a day, a combination of white rice + brown rice + barley + oat, fish and vege. So far, her digestive system tolerates to all the fishes that we gave her, but bear in mind that some fish gives itchiness to baby. So, I did not give to Khaira the ones that I couldn't eat during confinement.

Salmon has Omega-3 fatty acids that help your brain to work better and improve your memory

At 10 months, I introduced chicken and mushroom but she couldn't take it. She developed a skin rash, I decided to postpone them. I thought it's about time Khaira needed some snack, thus I introduced her to bread, first the white ones, then wholemeal, she loved them a lot.

As she reached a year old now, she could tolerate chicken. I added some variety to her food, yesterday I made some noodle soup for her. With onions and anchovy as a little flavour. I grilled her fish, previously just rebus, added some sesame or vegetable oil. After this, I intend to introduce spaghetti to her. Also, bought some Heinz teething biscuit for her snack, would try today.

I never added salt or sugar in her food. Ketchup or chicken stock lagilah tak. Tried to give her the healthiest that I could.

Every parents has different things that they are particular about. I'm very particular about what goes in into my baby's mouth. And yes, I received some distructive comments about what I gave to my baby. And yes, I wonder why did they feel  troubled about what I gave to my baby. I was the one who needed to carry a pan everywhere to heat up my baby food during Raya, I was the one to wake up at 5.15am every working day to cook for her.

But, really it's ok. Soon, Khaira will reach 2 years old, then she shall have more freedom to eat as what everybody else eats. Not that I wanted to take all her freedom, just thought that if she was going to spend the rest of her life, eating like us, why not just delay it a little. :)

P/S: Food that gives her colic the most: Potato, watermelon, sticky rice.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Happy Birthday, Khaira Asyikin!!

Dearest Khaira,

You're a year old today! :) How time flies..


As Ibu left to office, you were still in deep sleep. I know it might not be the best feeling in the world, waking up without Ibu and Abi by your side, but the truth is.. I couldn't bear. I couldn't bear hearing you cry and holding me not wanting to let go every time I'm about to go to work.

That's a sacrifice all of us have to make. Abi has to go to work to support us. Ibu has to work to pursue the ultimate dreams. And at times, Ibu needs to go back a little late because of my PhD. I am now in my writing process, very close to the end insya Allah. Meaning, more hard work. And Khaira has to sacrifice by spending more time with Nanny just a little while.

See, I don't believe working really hard is necessary. I believe family always comes first and that we must have a balance. I promise you, this is temporary.

Last Saturday, we made a small birthday party for you. I hope you're happy meeting all your relatives and friends. There are many types of people in this world, Khaira. And as your name suggests, be kind to each and every one of them; especially the relatives and friends. Then, they will be nice to you in return.

Each and everyone in this world has their own kindness, dig until you find them. But if somehow, the goodness inside them still couldn't make you tolerate to the evil inside them, walk away gracefully, with pride. You must always define your lines in life, Khaira. What you can tolerate and what you can't. Once you have defined them, stick to them and pray may Allah SWT guides you.

Whatever it is, Ibu and Abi will always be with you every step of your journey.

Happy birthday, Khaira Asyikin, you're a prayer come true, I can't express in words how much I love you.

There is this song in 90's called Yellow by Coldplay, and if you look at the lyrics, there is this one line,

"For you, I'd bleed myself dry.."

Without Ayah Ngah and Busu

With Khaira's milk mother and Aunty Sumay

This is an example of a good friend, Khaira :)

With Ibu and Abi!
Birthday wishes from Aunty Melissa..

"Happy birthday my sweet Khaira! Be a good daughter ya! Moga jadi anak yang solehah. Aunty Mel cant wait to see you again!"

And from Ibu's friends..


Monday, October 8, 2012

Just to cheer up the day

Desperately need something to boost up my mood..

Hahahaha!!

Ok, now.  Happy mood on, thinking cap is on. To thesis, bismillah.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

We don't say goodbye!

"So how many kids do you have now?" He asked.

"One, the other on the way." She answered.

"Gosh, what are you gonna do? Clean the house all day?"

"I'm gonna have a day maid come over."

"What are you going to do? You're gonna get bored!"

The above conversation took part when a dear friend decided to retire at the age of 28, with a Master degree. And by retiring means, at the moment she is a full time stay at home mum (SAHM), with no part time business whatsoever - just the way I dream my retirement days would be. Just some passive income because I'm not into business.

And the questions were asked by a husband (I guess I should rephrase that to husbands, because many asked) of a SAHM wife. For me, it's an insult!

They seriously think raising a child would be a simple, boring job and expect the house to be clean by the time they got home and the wife to cook and then still we got bored?

Funny! A SAHM friend barely had time to eat, busy taking care of her three kids and making sure the house was organized.

But SAHM is still my ultimate dream regardless of however challenging it might be like. I once asked this dear friend, just remember your ultimate reason of why you want to retire, so that in difficult days you'll always think back of that reason. Love called it, the "in case briefcase".

She wrote her "in case briefcase" in a book that she gave me on her last day, "Remember in life, our goal is "lillah" (for Allah)! Insya Allah, that will keep us steadfast, happy and contented always, Ameen." I took the advice to heart.

For that is a very strong reason why my ultimate dream is to be a SAHM.

At this moment, I still feel at lost. That dear friend, Dr. Sumay is the closest to me in Uni. She is part of who I am today. I love her beyond words.

But I am so secure by her retirement, that I know, she is a friend I will keep for life, insya Allah :)

We're just a WhatsApp away, I love you to bits!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Penang with Khaira.

Had a conference at Park Royal, Penang and just had to bring the 2 important Ks in my life!!

I must thank this sweetheart for driving me all the way to Penang, supporting my conference and taking care of Khaira while I worked.

It was a relaxing holiday. Arrived Saturday night. Checked in at Holiday Cove.

The next morning, brought Baby K to swim :)


I didn't swim. Dah cukup "putih" from Langkawi's sunburn.



 Check out in the morning and had breakfast at Kapitan. Owh the best Nan Cheese and Tandoori!!

Then, check in at Park Royal, man I love this hotel..

Look, Kokonut Club, play area for kids!!



And the view is breath-taking.


Then, off to work. It's daddy daughter time. Tada!

Monday, September 24, 2012

My parenting vs your parenting

After about a year nursing Spiderbaby, I guess nursing has become very natural to me. Alhamdulillah. I am forever grateful as I remember how hard it was for me, that first couple of weeks when Khaira was born. I always believe that everything happens for a reason though, and after a year I finally understand why my breastfeeding journey started off so.

In the environment where I live, breastfeeding has been a norm. Everyone that I know in my office breastfeeds. Even before I got married, in every conference that we went, they would bring two large bags, one for their laptop and the other for their breast pump. And I would observe with amazement of how this magnificent machine works.

I admired their determination. In my mind back then was that, my baby had to be breastfeed. There is no alternative way. Back then, I had a perception that those who did not breastfeed were either ignorant or plain lazy. Little did I know the challenges of breastfeeding. And how much determination it takes. I learned, not in an easy way, but owh well.. if that's the price I have to pay, Alhamdulillah :)

When my EBM's stock spoilt due to power disruption in our house, my heart broke into million pieces. At a sight of seeing random friends posted their dozens of bottles of EBM in the freezer made me numb.

"We have to always look back at the purpose of why we breastfeed," my pumping buddy once told me. "Is it to give the best to our baby? Or more of for show? We don't want the good 'niat' at first changed to 'riak'." I took that advice to heart.

A little reminder to self and to all mommies, and so we breastfeed our baby, yes. And give her the healthiest food we thought we could. And the best stimulating toys. Even the best educations. And we attended the best parenting courses. How sure are we that our child would turn up as the best? And is our best equivalent to other people's definition of best?

Having one healthy happy baby doesn't give the right for us to condemn other people's method of parenting. Whether she wants to breastfeed her child or not or whether she wants to dress her child in high heels or etc.

There's a fine line between 'condemning' and 'advising'. And between 'showing off' and 'motivating'.

May we be on the better side of the lines. :)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Langkawheeee again :)

Langkawi again!! :) Third time in three years. First, during our honeymoon (read it here) and then with my mom (read it here).

We travelled to LCCT by bus and ERL. Khaira? It was her (and mine) first time by train, super excited! No worries, mommies, ERL and shuttle bus are super convenient for babies. ERL is on time and the interval is every 20 minutes.


As of the plane, it was Khaira's second time (read Khaira's first time at 7mo here). So, she behaved better :) Plus it was just an hour away! We rented a Suzuki ERV MPV auto for RM350 for 3 days, super cheap. Thank you, SIL and BIL for the contact numbers!

Day 1

Our first visit is to Beras Terbakar, shopped for some souvenirs.

Then, to Mahsuri's tomb.

After lunch, we checked in, stayed in Perdana Beach Resort Apartment. Very convenient especially with Baby K. I blended the rice and vege beforehand, cut the fish into small cubes. So, in order to cook Khaira's food, just dump the rice, vege and fish in the microwave for 10-15 minutes.

Later in the evening, we went to the Eagle's statue. And after dinner, we wrapped our day!



Day 2

Was drizzling in the morning, but just as we reached the island hopping's jetty, the weather was all perfect, Alhamdulillah. The boat ride was much better than Bali's but somehow Khaira was a bit unsettled here.


First stop, Tasik Dayang Bunting :) Had a timeout just Love and I for our solar boat ride. Owh how wonderful!


Next stop, Eagle feeding.


But the best has got to be, Pantai Beras Basah!!! Look at my little girl! How she loves the beach! ♥



Later in the evening, we shopped at Chenang and then to Wan Thai, Kuah for dinner as suggested again by BIL and SIL! Sedap and murah okeh. All these for RM156 :)



Day 3

Started our morning with swimming at the pool. Khaira was super happy!


Then, after lunch, shopped a little bit more. Love and I took another time out for a little Spa treat. Had my pedicure and scrub, Love and a foot massage.



And that was how our sweet trip ended. Best! Alhamdulillah, since I brought my whole family with me, everything is smooth sailing. Food sedap, murah, even island hopping we got it for RM25; previously with hubby and mom, RM35 each.

And travelling with my little traveler meant the word to me!

Next trip, Penang!!