Sairah Turns 4!

19 Sep

Sairah Turns 4!

Can you believe it?  Your favorite blogger’s kid (ahem) is all of 4 as of a week ago? That’s close to 4 years of reading about this random child that you do not know of on my blog and that’s 4 years of me putting up with her, haha. Man, that’s 4 years worth of poop cleaning come to think of it! The last week of her threes were indeed horrendous as she was acting up as though to say hey, it’s the very last week of my Terrible Threes so I’m going to make the most of it before I  move to to my Fabulous Four stage. Or do they call it Frightening Four???

I somehow think its the latter.

*Que some sort of horror music*

Anyhos, birthday gifts -we all love em aye? What more a child! So here’s some photos of the lil munckins opening up her presents and boy was she well behaved that day.

On to-do list after breakfast on my birthday: why, open them presents of course!

Yes! Bunny pants, coz I love bunnies and all things cuddly and fluffyyy.

Lego set from Sairah’s buddy Krisha.

The smirk says it all because she requested this gift from grandma.

And as they say, a grandma will climb and move mountains if she could just to go find the damn golf set. In this case, it was Toys R Us where she had to look it up herself despite the SA telling her they didn’t have such toy. Malaysian customer service at its best :D

Ish, not too sure who’s more excited to get the golf set. That’s how sexy the husband looks in the mornings by the way, hah.

A stroller, just because.

She also received some gifts via post…

Mr.Postman brought me these?? Now I understand why mom loves getting parcels…coz it IS exciting!

I guess the expression says it all…

Frozen dolls all thanks to her Aunty.

Peppa pig jammies from the husband’s cousin…

And every four year old needs a ceramic cup and bowl to eat and drink from. Like an adult! After all, turning 4 means saying goodbye to the milk bottle *fingers crossed soon*!

And a parcel from good ol UK thanks to Aunty Wylane.

Last but not least, Sairah received the best kind of gift which was grandma’s presence in Australia. Since these two were missing each other terribly, Sairah’s mommy and Aunty decided to fly grandma here (spoken like as though we own a private jet yo, haha) for this very special mission to spend time with the birthday girl. What can I say except, her expression when she saw her grandma at the airport was absolutely priceless and how we wish grandpa was around for the occasion as well.

We wanted to do something simple and low key so when the birthday girl requested to go to the beach for her birthday we immediately thought of Geelong.

Stopped by the Cheesecake Shop to pick up a cake before the trip. And how many of you swear this set up looks familiar? That’s because this franchise was actually opened back in Malaysia MANY years ago and I have strong memories walking into the shop one too many times with mom back in Taman Desa for their delicious cheesecakes. That’s how I got fat back in the day. True story :eek: Wait, I”m still fat because of damn cakes!

Walked into cheesecake shop and came out with a mud cake, coz we’re rebels like that.

The journey to Geelong was absolutely a scenic one with these yellow flowers out in bloom so can you imagine seeing these beauties a good 15km of the journey? Breath-takingly beautiful.

Went to a friend’s house first so we decided to cut her cake there. Friend was kind enough to get some balloons for Sairah to make it a lil festive.

Let’s cut and eat this sucker up now!

Then it was off to lunch.

And again, cannot praise my love for Geelong.

I.am.four.years.old.today.and.mom.reminds.me.everyday.that. I’ll.have.to.go.to.school.soon.meh.

BEACH TIME!

We were lucky the weather was just about right…with sun out in the sky with some cool winds which made it the perfect day to be out and about at the beach.

4 years of doing, as what Sairah calls it the ‘up and down’ as a workout for her old man. Check out this video I took some 2 years ago when that form of exercise seemed easier then, hahaha.

Nothing like a good catch the ball when at the beach I reckon.

And goes without saying, nothing makes this child happier than to be at the beach and it was definitely a good way to spend her fourth birthday.

If we could only live nearby the beach…

I shall end this post with a short video of a 4 year old Sairah reading a story. Yup, it’s definitely going to be an interesting year ahead for all of us!

Mishmash Round-Up

10 Sep

Mishmash Round-Up

It’s been a little over 3 weeks since we moved here so I just wanted to share some pictures taken from my crappy phone about our weekly round-ups – mishmash style.

The farewell – It is never easy saying bye to family members and friends, esp with blood you’ve literally grown up together with but as I’ve said it over and over again, with cheap flights these days and the power of whatsapp/viber/skype, it definitely makes the journey living abroad a lil more easier.  Not the same, but something’s better than nothing aye. After all, I should know since the husband and I were doing a 5 month long distance relationship this year! God only knows how couples did this sans technology some moons back.

We flew on MAS on a one way ticket (#support!) on their night flight and arrived in Melbourne at 6 a.m and an hour later, Sairah was reunited with her daddy. Who also forgot to do grocery shopping to stock up food for us so we actually drove ourselves straight to the supermarket (they open at 6.30 a.m here, joy!) with our luggage still in the booth  just to get the essentials. Sigh….MEN….hopeless as hopeless gets, lol

Gotta say, the supermarket was literally ours!

Picking out one of her favorite Milo snack…and it’s always time for snack.

Cannot believe how bright-eyed she was at 7.30 in the morning (technically 5.30 a.m Malaysian time!). And because I didn’t sleep a single wink on board, I literally KO-ed the minute we got home.

We currently live about 30 minutes away from the city (suburban folks yo) and there’s this lake in the center of our township that’s a hit with Sairah.

We stop by to have snacks sometimes…

The calm before the storm.

The storm – esp when they know you have food with you.

But on most times, we stop by to feed the ducks. We can almost never finish up the entire loaf of bread on time here so for most parts the ducks at the lake have been benefiting from this.

Father of all birds feeding his babies :lol:

And just a 10-15 minutes walk from home, lies this amazing public library which is fast becoming one of our favorite hang-outs.

Besides being FREE and being able to borrow up to 20 books at each go, I have to admit – this is probably the most well equipped library I’ve ever been to. Not like I’ve been to that many but still…

There’s books on almost every subjects out there…

The kiddie section is pretty stocked up with its selection.

Hmm, what to choose, what to choose…

This is just one corner of the library, there’s more books on the other side. When I first walked in, I thought I was walking into Borders.

Look there’s also kiddie DVDs and DVDs for adults to borrow too. They do have reading session for kids but problem with that is – its held at ungodly hours while we’re still asleep :lol: Woe.

There’s also a CAFE inside the library, coupled with free desktop with internet access and they hold all kinds of activities and groups meet-ups/discussions.

And of course, I am excited over the fact how I can read the latest magazines at the library without forking out AUD7 to buy it. Score!

Just some of our borrowed books. To think how we’ll never have to spend money on buying books ever again. Well maybe not ever but for a while then. They also have a cool self check out counter that you do on your own when you borrow these books.

If you ask Sairah what’s her favorite thing about Melbourne at the moment, she will tell you its the playground with the YELLOW slide. Because all she ever wants to do is visit the playground. Not the one near home. But the one that’s about 10 minutes walk from home because it has an awesome yellow slide.

Kids.

Come on mom, I can see the yellow slide from here.

Said yellow slide. Have lost count on how many times that kid has gone down the slide.

Out at the park under 2pm sun. Because the sun here is less forgiving than the one in KL :lol:

I have way too many shots of my lil one taking charge walking up ahead of me because all of a sudden she has become a keen explorer ready to check out what’s in front of her. Or perhaps, these old bones are getting slow!

Lake lake lake…let’s go see the duckies.

Yellow slide yellow slide yellow slide….let’s go sliding down the yellow slide.

There’s also benches and tables at the playground, perhaps we’ll have a picnic there too one day. Under 1pm sun this time!

Besides playground, I’ve been prepping her for kinder because *sobs*, my baby girl, will be hitting school come next year! We’re in the process of signing her up for kindie and will be checking out the schools come next week to see which one best suits her. Fun times ahead.

Artsy fartsy -ness in session. Nothing like spending quality time with daddy on a Friday night painting the night away…

She has even dubbed her painting as the ‘mud puddle’ and quite aptly so, haha.

Markets are a culture here! They’re big on local artist and designers hence there are several markets set up around the city for one to explore/buy. Sellers sell strictly their own creations or prints from a local artist and this is nice to see how local talents and skills get recognized.

This was taken outside Rose St Market. And oh it’s suppose to be Spring now. There are good weather days, but there are days where it still gets cold and so windy. But for now, weather during the weekend seems to be perfect for some reason.

Fitzroy Garden – so beautiful and peaceful.

She spotted a lil playground at the corner hence the speedy running towards it.

Out and about having lunch in the city using our voucher from Scoopon. Haha I can never say no to vouchers, they’re my way of life, hehehe.

Random as random gets, TIM TAM RED VELVET!! This is sooo bloody good that I’ve stocked it up quite a bit since it’s limited edition. If it ever hits Malaysian shore, please do sapu the whole damn thing coz it’s that good. Not overly chocolaty, not overly sweet either, just nice and orgasmic :)

Why do you have to be so good?!

Out on a shopping trip….I simply just love this dress on her.

And last but not least, there’s a temple about 15-20 minutes from home…and I think no matter which part of the world you’re at, going to a temple gives you that warm feeling of being at home.

I definitely wouldn’t want Sairah forgetting her roots but I don’t think she ever will since there are tons of Asians in Melbourne :lol: I do like how schools here have become so diverse though.

To top it off, it couldn’t get any better after the hubby mentioned about the cafe just next to the temple that sells your typical Indian fare. Joy.

That’s all about the mishmash updates for now. So far this still feels like a holiday because everything just seems so new  and foreign to us. So the key to it all for now is to take everything in, one at a time, mishmash style, haha.

Park In The City

31 Aug

Park In The City

On 16th of August, Sairah and I boarded a flight to Melbourne and we’ve been pretty much bumming around for the past 2 weeks. It’s already the tail end of winter or so it says but weather forecast is predicting cold days ahead despite tomorrow being the first day of spring – that’s Melbourne for you! I’m not going to complain coz I rather have  the cold than the heat (though I’ve heard summer here can be quite brutal) plus its amazing how I find myself not having to wash my hair twice a day here  :lol:  Anyway the weather has been pleasant for the past 2 days around 20 degrees  so we figured a day out to the park in the city seemed like a lovely thing to do and also park-culture (okay not sure if there’s such a statement) is huge here. People have picnics in the park, they jog around the park, they stroll around the park, they play badminton, they roller-blade, kids run around like crazy, love birds just hang out for a cheap cheap date and well – you get the point.  Oh, you can also have birthday parties in the park – no joke! It helps that Melbourne has tons of greenery and parks/gardens to offer.

There was a Sunday Market taking place near the National Gallery so we decided to go look see….

We obviously didn’t buy anything.

But we did end up at a cafe nearby for some coffee!

What I absolute love about Melbourne? Its coffee and coffee culture! Combine that with an outdoor seating under just-right type of weather and you’ll have the perfect chillax day. Well until your toddler decides to ruin it somehow for you I suppose.

Sairah having her snack

And as usual, must help her daddy stir his coffee.

She was even kind enough to feed the birds near our table some of her sandwich crumbs.

There there, they’re all full and happy now.

We decided to stroll around the gallery and the park nearby.

Went into the art gallery for 10 minutes to use the toilet, lol. We did visit the gallery on our previous trip in June and looks like these bear exhibition are still on display. So a compulsory photo posing in front of it seemed like a good idea.

A stroll in the park…

As usual, huge open space = speedy Gonzales toddler.

Lucky for us, she did recharge by sitting down quietly for a few minutes. Or so.

Let’s climb up the hill old man, I’ll race your old bones

The view

The rest from the ‘hike’ up the hill, lol

Ugh, sloppy kisses – lemme out of here! Story of my husband’s life….haha

And as usual – run run run…

Father-Daughter race.

This ought to make her sleep like a log tonight then! I hope.

Making our way back to the train station.

Without a doubt, a popular Melbourne landmark.

Birds love Sairah so much, they tend to follow her around, even to the train station :D

And incase you haven’t figured this out yet….yup, we’ve finally made the BIG MOVE after years of barking talking about it and boy has it been a journey of sorts.

But more on that soon.

Baby Chef

26 Aug

Baby Chef

There used to be a show on BabyTv called Baby Chef which was a hit with Sairah. I’m pretty sure it’s STILL aired on BabyTv. Lucky for us we’ve long ago abandoned that channel :)  You could say this post is inspired by that because up until today, I can’t shake the theme song off my head….baby chef baby chef…cooking is a lot fun…baby chef…fun for everyoneeee.  And it’s been 1.5 years or so since she last saw it :o  Naturally there’s more to that song too.

So here’s sharing a post that you could do with your own  lil munchkin as well as it’s easy and best of all less mess to deal with!

Most important step of em all: place baby chef on a high stool so even if they get bored of ‘cooking’ mid way, there’s no way of them escaping, lol. Ok I kid.

Peace all, this is gonna be easy as pieeee.

The ingredients you need are going to be fairly easy and you can customize em to fit your taste.

The key to a good easy peasy pizza base is this – Lebanese bread! Its a healthier version of course but most importantly it’s also light hence this shall be your thin-crust base!

You can saute up the filling yourself first. Husband seen here sauteing spinach with ricotta in the pan for me and ham bits for himself. In a separate pan of course.

Placing the bread in a pizza board or plate, get your lil one to spread some ready made tomato sauce with a spoon and get him/her to spread it evenly.

Here we’ve decided to use chicken slices and baby chef Sairah proceeds to place them evenly on the pizza base. Who am I kidding, we had to tell her many times to spread em EVENLY and not just put everything in the center.

Next, get them to sprinkle generous portions of Mozzarella cheese. This she had no problems at all coz hey, who doesn’t want cheese to be in every corner of their food.

And this is where you’ll probably tell your Baby Chef many times to remain professional and NOT eat the dang cheese just yet! Like so:

Baby Chef hygiene when preparing food – FAIL :lol:

We decided to make this half and half, so we got her to fill daddy’s half with some chopped stinky olives. Which I despise.

Baby Chef Sairah’s creation is allll ready to  hit the oven! Looks pretty good eh?

Here’s some other variants you could make too. If you can get yourself a box of dip (I got the roasted capsicum one that’s pretty spicy), just spread em as a base sauce for your pizza.

For a totally Indian dose, you can spice it up with some Jalapeno peppers!

And then top it off with some Moza and Colby cheese!

And the last variant is the spinach + ricotta mixture spread (sauteed first) 0n the bread and topped off with some Moza +Colby and with a few dollops of Ricotta. Mmm mmmm mama mia-ness extreme.

Bake em all in the oven (in our case we did it one by one) and this was the results:

Sairah’s pizza all cut into pieces ready to serve…

The spicy capsicum + jalapeno combo with some ham on other half belonging to the husband.

And last but not least, the spinach + ricotta combo.

Seriously yummy and light!

And most importantly, as you would tell your Baby Chef, no greater satisfaction comes from making your own food and now that you know how much trouble (or maybe not) your mother goes through to prepare your meals on a daily basis, you bloody learn to sit down quietly and eat it all no matter how ‘yucky’ it may be at times!

Like this:

Mmmm, I made this!

Definitely a good experience and lesson to every toddler out there. Try it and you just might inspire your kid to be the next MasterChef!

And She Starts Cooking Again

23 Aug

And She Starts Cooking Again

Has it been raining like crazy in KL past few days? Coz I’ve been cooking religiously (surprise surprise) :lol: and figured these were worth sharing since they are quite easy to put together. The first is Spinach Lasagna Rolls which were adapted from Giada and Laura Vitale. I decided to simplify the version and you can literally put them together quite fast for a real hearty Italian meal. On a side note, I am obsessing with any recipes that involves SPINACH. And it’s also toddler friendly since the greens get lost over the cheesy goodness that somehow even the most veggie-phobic  of toddlers (like mine) might not even know mommy has sneaked in some greens!

For this simplified recipe you’ll need:

5-6 large lasagna sheets, cooked in hot water for 4-5 minutes. Add in some salt and oil to ensure the sheets do not get stuck to each other. Keep aside.

In a pot, sautee half chopped white onions until translucent and add in baby spinach that is enough to use as filling for all 5-6 lasagna sheets. Cook until everything is wilted. Add in some pepper and salt.

Once cooked, transfer to a bowl and add in 3-4 tablespoon of Ricotta until spinach is coated well. More if your waistline can afford it. You may opt to add in some feta cheese too as it gives you a good balance of saltiness to the dish. I didn’t  have feta in the fridge so I left it out. But damn, feta would have been good. Maybe next time!

Taking your lasagna sheet, spread the mixture upwards and then roll them to mimic a cigar.

Spray your baking dish with some cooking oil and place all your rolls down next to each other until baking dish is filled. After which, get a bottle of yummy tomato sauce (any store made one will do or you could make your own) and spread them over the rolls until even. Then throw in generous portions of Mozzarella with a mix of Colby cheese (whichever cheese that tickles your fancy) and top it off with some sundried tomatoes (optional).

Bake under 200 degrees for 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted.

Like so:

Now cut them according to the rolls and SERVE these bad boys up! For a rough estimation, it takes about 2 rolls for an adult to get filled up. So although making 5-6 rolls seems little, it’s definitely not!

And savor the cheesy goodness that comes with the healthy stuffings!

YUM! Sumpah sedap! And definitely quite easy to make.

And moving on to something local, I was craving for something spicy and we had just bought a food processor a few days ago. So I decided to officiate the food processor by making sambal from scratch!

Here is the recipe if anyone is keen:

And this is the end result! I toned down the spiciness to 2 long chilies only because the husband cannot tolerate e anything too spicy but feel free to follow the recipe to the tee.

Being the lazy smart ass that I can be sometimes, I decided to add more water so I can get more paste/sambal out of it and stored the balance in the fridge. The next day, I simply sauteed one whole chopped onions, some capsicum, some chopped carrots and some beans in the paste and wala -an easy peasy dish for dinner! It took under 15 minutes to put everything together and it was even easier to clean up, naturally :)

Served with yummy taufu for a good dose of proteins. Won’t say its healthy since I fried it :)

A satisfying meal for sure!

Try em both! You won’t regret it…it’s as easy as easy gets, well except for making the sambal from scratch (oh and I freaking HATE peeling off the shell for the hard boil eggs!) but hey there is a certain degree of satisfaction that comes from making it from scratch. Yourself.

Damn. Never knew I’d see the day where I’d say something like that.

Oh well :lol:

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