Mar 30, 2011

4S

Sultan Sulaiman Shah School or famously known as 4S is about 1 km away from our school, but this morning was the first time I've ever  been to the school. It came as a shock (both to me and the Australian delegates whom I was  accompanying) when we learnt that our bus could not access to the school as there was a narrow entrance and it was impossible for the bus to make a u-turn. Hence, we had to walk through the shoplots and housing area to reach the school. The sight of us walking invites some curious stares from the people in the area. It was indeed a rare sight for some foreigners to be walking around the town in local school uniforms.


Upon our arrival, we were greeted by the kompang and the representative from the Australian Embassy, followed by the usual opening ceremony and welcome speeches.


After a short break, the students were taken to the classrooms for some interactive activities with the selected hosting students. Those students from 4S were very enthusiastic and bombarded the Aussie students with tons of questions. When the teachers joined in, they were also being attacked vigorously. Nonetheless, they were attentively listening to every explanation given. I could sense that these students visualising themselves being in one of Australian schools.

Then, after another break for lunch there was a showtime.....The closing ceremony was very entertaining when we were presented with cultural dances by the Indians and Chinese. The Indian classical dance was my personal favourite. She has done the school proud, especially her dancing teacher.


The Chinese dance...

More Indian dance... with candles


And last but not least, the Aussie (students and teachers) presented their national anthem..


This weekend, I'm taking two of the girls home.........

Mar 29, 2011

An Australian Affair

After much anticipation from us, finally on Monday, the Australian visitors arrived at about 6.30p.m at our school. The reception was done at the hostel. The guests were assigned to their respective rooms and after dinner, they were taken to town to buy their school uniforms. This morning, they joined the school assembly wearing the newly bought-unwashed-and-unironed school uniforms. Pity them, from their expressions I could tell that they were totally unimpressed with the uniforms but got to wear them anyway.    



The students are from five different schools in Melbourne ages between 14 to 16 years old. Most of them are bigger and taller than our average 16-17 years  old students. One of them could not find the uniform that fit her size, so that she got to wear her casual clothes to the class.

One obvious problem is the food.. They are not familiar with our food and most of them refused to eat our hot and spicy food especially in the morning. At the conference room, we had to order another set of breakfast - French toast for them.   


Two of accompanying teachers, Sam and Kim.


They put on boring expressions on their face which later were reprimanded by one of the teachers. I heard she said something about having manner and showing gratitude. I'm not blaming them, I know they must be tired from the travelling and one of them claimed to have a jet-lag.


Having a short rest while waiting for their class assignments. They will only enter the class for today to get the first-hand experience. There are many other activities lined up for them until the final day they are here. In the afternoon, they were taken to Bukit Melawati historical site in Kuala Selangor.



Two of the girls joined the physical education class in their school uniforms...

Mar 25, 2011

Down under.

Next week, our school will be expecting 17 Australian students and four teachers. They will be staying at the school hostel for the whole week and at a foster home for one night. All these while, we expected them to be white but to our surprise, this morning a representative from the Education Ministry came and clarified that these students are actually from indigenous people. I could see the disappointment from some of the teachers as they are looking forward to seeing white Australian. It has never occurred to them to be meeting these indigenous people.

(google image)

Anyway, I'm grateful to have them at our school for one week as it is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for my students to be subjected to an international event like this. In the past, according to the rep, this kind of program only involved cluster/elite schools. This is the first time ever for the embassy to choose a school (well, two schools actually-our school and one neighbouring school)  outside Klang valley to host this event. The embassy wants to expose the students to the schools that represent the real Malaysian student-life as well as to expose them to different ethnic groups in Malaysia. Our school represent the Malay community while the other school represent the others such as the Chinese and Indians.
   
 It's an honour for both of the schools to be hosting this event. There are lots of activities lined-up for them  hoping that it will be a meaningful endeavour for both schools and the Australian embassy.

Mar 20, 2011

Homemade pizza



Finally, yesterday, their dream came true. The twins were very excited to make their own first homemade pizza (this time with my help coz they didn't know how to shape the crust). Saturday is our grocery shopping dayand  they were more than happy to tag along as they got to choose their own ingredients to be put as topping. They were planning to make seafood pizza so they grabbed two cans of tuna and a big packet crab meat, while I could only picture of mushroom with lotta cheese pizza. It's ok, we make two different varieties, they suggested. Hmm, so clever.... 



 Button mushroom is my all-time favourite.



This is how the pizza looked like before it was cooked. The good thing about making your own pizza is you got to invent your own topping and decide the thickness of the crust. So, it was a very thick crust with lotta goodies as topping. Finally, there were three regular size of 'pizza Hut' pizzas for dinner and were all gone almost immediately after they were served......



This is the masterpiece seafood pizza by the twins. They have grown to love with the varieteis of things that can be done with flour and yeast and planned to try new recipes with them soon.... 
  

Mar 18, 2011

It was meant to be..



It was the first time ever happened to me at home (happened once before at the school canteen), a miserable little fly dived into my steaming hot coffee.  It probably died immediately after... A little annoyed, I poured all the content into the sink and made myself a cup of green tea instead. Maybe it was meant to be, tak ada rezeki, hehe... So, it was green tea and crackers for me that afternoon.... 

Mar 17, 2011

Cinnamon rolls

This is the first time I've ever written anything about food but I think I need to hail this one to acknowledge my daughters' achievement in making cinnamon rolls.  They've been wanting to make/bake it for quite sometime, but I didn't realize that they didn't know what dry yeast was. So, yesterday I bought them two packets of yeast and they just couldn't wait to experiment with it for the first time with the recipe they found on the net.  



They really loved to play with the texture of the flour after  mixing all the ingredients together. It was just like playing with the play-doh...I didn't have to do anything, simply sat and watched them doing it....


The dough balls were left to rise for one and half hours. 


Then, it was done...there were plenty of rolls for our tea in the afternoon.


Ready to serve...glazed with fine sugar.

P.S: they are planning to make pizza next time.

Mar 16, 2011

New babies...

I'm welcoming and celebrating new babies in March...On the 4th of March, my sister had given birth to a cute baby boy....The first boy of five siblings, which no doubt brings cheers and excitement to the family. My brother in-law commented 'Allhamdulillah, putera pertamaku' on his facebook when he uploaded the first pic of his son to share with everybody...  


Welcome Muhammad Ammar Qaweim...he looks so bright and energetic even though he was only a few days old when the photo was taken. Then, a week after on 11 of March, my other sister had given birth to her second son. There's no picture of him to show but I'm sure he's as cute as well; all babies are, aren't they? Now both of the mothers and babies are at my mother's in Kedah. I can imagine how hectic it is for my mum to cope with two new babies along with a bunch of their siblings at home. 

My twins are very excited about it and wanted to go back to Kedah to visit their new cousins but their  daddy is busy and they have tuition classes to attend, maybe next holiday we are going back... I tried to console them.

To keep them busy, yesterday my hubby brought home a pair of baby birds his colleague found in the garbage bin. He was not sure how the babies ended up in the garbage bin, maybe it was dumped by somebody coz I don't think a mother bird is capable of doing it. Anyway, he took pity on the birds and brought them back home to be cared of by the twins. 

  
 The birds were ravenous when they  arrived home and the twins made them milk and fed them using a spoon and syringe. My two daughters really have a special affection towards these little animals ever since they have pet rabbits and hamsters. It's been a while since I last posted about their hamsters. Here is the latest pic of baby hamsters, strawberry, chocolate, vanilla and caramel (I can't tell which is which, they all look the same to me)



To date, they have a total of seven hamsters along with four rabbits and two baby birds, it's like a mini zoo. Anyway, we are not planning to keep the birds and will set them free when they are strong enough to fly.....


Mar 15, 2011

What's your secret??

I've been wanting to write this post for quite sometime but I didn't how to start without making me sounds like a proud peacock or something.... 

Anyway, often times I was asked by my colleagues or acquaintances if I have any secret of keeping my skin healthy and youthful. If the question was straight forward like this, my answer was also simple and straight forward....'there's no secret, just keep smiling.' Nonetheless, when the question was a bit complicated like what skincare product I'm using, then I need to clarify and explain that my skincare product is not of those expensive brands but the ordinary drug store brands which can easily be found at any pharmacy.




Well, the truth is I had tried at least three rather expensive brands; Clinique, Estee Lauder and SK-ll hoping that they would improve my skin condition but after only a few months of using them, there were blemishes all over my face. Yup, all three of them had an adverse effect on my skin and  I even tried Clinique anti-acne range to solve the problem. After trying for quite sometime, I gave up and thought maybe my  skin is not meant for the expensive brands...so I settled with Eucerin after reading a nice review about it and been using it for five years now without having any problems except for occasional breakouts.

The only thing is, I told my friends if we want to have a great skin without visible pores and/or wrinkles, we need to be very persistent and never skip the three-step routine which is cleansing, toning and moisturising no matter what brand we are using (which I've been so religiously doing for the past ten years or so).  But then, they would say that they don't have any time and/or money to spare for it as they have other commitments. Well, if you are not willing to sacrifice your time and money for it, then I think you should not be complaining about your skin condition. Just be happy and grateful about it... As for me, it just doesn't stop with your face, other part of your body is also important. That's why I'm never tired of applying lotion to my whole body, especially after long hours in the air-cond. I'm a lotion freak... 


Anyway, it never ceases to amaze me to see jaws dropping when I said that I have six children with the eldest being 23, my valentine boy who celebrated his birthday last February. This is the picture of him with my two daughters which  was taken last year. He was sometimes mistaken as my husband by the people who didn't know us because he is my driver whenever my hubby is not around.


Speaking of my hubby, actually he also shares the same awkward situation with me when sometimes people thought my daughter was his girlfriend when they happened to go out together.  Well, now the truth to be told...we got married early at the tender age of 20, that's why we have grown up children and still look young....There's no secret, after all...

Green tea and oral care


Green tea is believed to treat bad breath or halitosis. It is also said to cure gum disease and reduce gingivities. Research shows that green tea polyphenols (antioxidant compounds) can hinder the strength of bacteria causing gum disease and the damage it causes.

Mar 11, 2011

The last day

Today is the last day of school for the first half of the first term for this year (happy, holiday mood!!!), it's also the last and final day for one of my colleagues. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, in fact I didn't know how to act when someone is retiring. It's my first experience and I was sort of going with the flow even though I was one of the members who organized the farewell party (well, it's not a party really!) for him.....


Personally, I'm not very closed with him, that's why I didn't know how to act (or what to feel) but he managed to share some words of wisdom with me when we happened to sit next to each for a brief moment. He said that we need to show our affection towards the students in order to get their attention and make them wanting to learn from us....(thank you, Cikgu Jamali...I will always remember that)


In his final speech, he advised the students to respect the teachers and to take a really good care of themselves so that they will not be easily influenced by others. I learnt that Cikgu Jamali was one of the pioneers of this school 12 years back and he was also one of the key players behind the development of the school. His contributions to the school are treasured and remembered by all, I'm sure of that. I saw some of my friends brushed away the tears when the song "Pelangi petang" by the late Sudirman was played in the background.....


His final thumb print.....



Cracking jokes with the principals.......



The driver is taking him home....farewell, Cikgu Jamali...
You will always be closed to our hearts and have a great retirement...... 

  

Mar 9, 2011

Counting the day.....

Right at this moment, I'm counting the day for the mid-term break to start....Even though it's only for one week, I'm desperately yearning for a break right now.........this is because I've been working so hard for the past few weeks that I think I deserve a nice loooong break, but one week will do for the time being.....

It's just to spare me sometime to come back to my senses and realign my mood to be ready for the next line up activities waiting to be realized in the second term....yikes! Let's see right after the break, there will be:
  • SPM result 
  • general PTA's meeting
  • a visit from a group of Australian students 
  • meeting and more meeting
  • debate competition
And the list goes on.....I think I gonna be crazy if I face all these without having enough energy/spirit to do so, given the stressful and long week I'm having now.....had to stay back all week for a course, meeting and some more meeting...gosh! now I realise that we are having meeting (both planned and unplanned) every single day this week....no wonder I get burnt-out.....

Can't wait to pamper myself and finish reading Norwegian Wood this coming holiday....

  


Mar 8, 2011

Yes, finally....

Yessss!!!! finally I did it, even though I'm not really, truly satisfied with what I 've done at least I have taken the first step and  given the course to my colleagues. So now that the heavy burden on my shoulder had been lifted off and I know where do I stand and what I'm capable of (or not).... hehe..

 Credit goes to my hubby who went into trouble to edit my Power Point presentation which no doubt received encouraging compliments from everybody. And I gathered everybody had fully understood what I've shared with them because they didn't raised any questions and seemed to be very attentive during the whole session......phew!!!

Clearly, from what I've experienced  I think it might be a good idea for us to try something new in our lives once in a while, so that we can see things from different perspective and feel good about ourselves....

Mar 3, 2011

How to say no to your boss?

Well.....
 the truth is you simply don't......it's something that I learnt that from my previous boss who advised me years back when I jhad just started my early career, the three magic words "never say no".

Just the other day, I was debating with myself whether to say no or just accept my boss's suggestion (read: order) without giving him a slightest idea that I'm not capable of doing it ......it's kinda hard to explain coz it's not my job and I don't want to be a scapegoat to be doing it just because somebody else doesn't want to do it.

 Anyway, it happened in the meeting, out of the blue like one bright idea bestowed upon him, my boss suggested me doing it ......which, no doubt appalled everyone in the committee and I was left absolutely stunned and speechless........obviously, I didn't make any comment and it was decided then....

Later, came few close friends playing devil's advocate......'This is not your job'.....'You should not be doing this'...'Ask someone else to do it'....and I was truly touched by their concern.......How supportive, some friends they are! Confused, I turned to my hubby for some advice (while secretly hoping that he'll be on my side as well)....but then he said 'just do it, it's a good opportunity for you, besides, it's not as difficult as it seems' Bla,bla,bla....

Yeah right! he thinks giving a course to my colleague is easy ......c'mon,  I haven't done this before and  it's about 70 of them not 7.....what if I got cold feet? what if I lost for words to say? and the possibilities are endless.....sigh!sigh!sigh!

Dissatisfied, first thing the next morning I was determined and went to confront my boss, hoping that he would change his mind so I could name some eligible candidates(or rather, one paricular most qualified one) to be considered.....and it turned out to be he is singing the same tune with my hubby....'Why don't you just go ahead with it and don't worry about a single thing, I'll be supporting you all the way. You know, this is inevitable given your position right now, take it as an chance and your colleagues will respect you more.'

But, I don't want their respect, I don't need their respect....I'm doing fine right now and not planning to change that anytime soon...... 

But then again, I guess it's useless to argue with my boss...the boss is always right....so I flashed him a sweetest smile I could fake and said, 'Ok, boss, I'll do it, so how do you want me to start.......' Just then, it was like a deja-vu when I remembered my former bosses (not one, but two of them) who had the wisdom to know and were kind enough to supply me with some valuable insight to hold to in my career. Sadly, though lately I observed my young colleagues are openly saying no to the boss..... oblivious to the fact that their names are making their marks in boss's little black book...

Ultimately, on Monday, I'm giving my colleagues the short course as directed by my boss...am having butterflies in my stomach...... nonetheless, am keeping my fingers crossed....

  

Mar 1, 2011

February Reflection

Last January, I have started this so-called monthly reflection...and here is my February's.....if I could remember correctly, I think I would start living a healthy life which means to eat healthily and do exercise....I've been trying, quite unsuccessfully, I'm afraid to exercise on cross-trainer...my target was at least twice a week but it seems it was only twice a month for Feb (too bad).

Again, I guess time is to be blamed and it is the best excuse to be found....busy, tight schedule and so forth...And as far as food is concerned, I think i'm pretty satisfied with what I have achieved so far...even though I find it hard to have green tea everyday, at least i'm trying to.....

As for my reading, I have finished reading the first novel last month and now have started on the second one....will be finished during the coming school holidays....no worries about achieving ten books for this year..

And since everybody seemed to be pretty preoccupied last month, it was less spending time together (even when we were having take-out pizza and cake for my oldest's birthday's dinner, two members of the family were not around i.e. dad and sha). Need to work on that during the holidays or weekends....

Well, obviously for this month much effort is needed to cover up what had been amiss in February...
(need to work more, need more efforts....hehe)

Green tea and skin care

This post is to motivate me to drink more and more green tea....at least once a day...which I profoundly think I need a drive force....huhu... it's not easy when all this while you prefer to enjoy a cup of coffee instead of tea....but now, I manage to cut down on coffee to three cups or less in a week. (with a lot of effort, of course)


Green tea is known to have antioxidan which can protect the skin from UV rays and chemicals in the air. It also prevent wrinkles and skin pigmentation.....
So, ladies drink green tea for your beautiful skin.

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