Saturday, April 30, 2011

Easter Break's Still On

Today, everyone was talking about the Royal Wedding but here's me, still going on about my stories of the Easter break. Well, congrats to Prince William and Kate. They are just so beautiful. Beautiful wedding, beautiful everything.

OK, so I've posted that our last weekend was really busy and full of activities. I still have two more days to report on but I think I'll cheat a bit and summarise both busy days, today. Hehehe...

On Sunday, the kids' swimming class was on as usual and straight after that we went to Farmleigh for a quick picnic. I just made some burgers and my friend brought some fried noodles and another some chicken nuggets. There was an Easter event going on the park and there even was a live local band by local performing there. My hubby was even convinced to fork out some cash to buy the band's CD. It was a really nice day and we even got the timing spot on - as soon as we finished eating and the kids had enough fun, it started to rain. Phewwww...

The next day was Easter Monday and we attended Mrs Tasya's daughter's birthday party at a theme park of sorts called Fort Lucan. Even though it's just a 10-minute drive away from where we live and we pass by it almost every time we head to Lucan, we've never had a chance to go there, until now that is.

 King Hisham
 Jumping on a trampoline - I wish I could join in

OMG, It was really high. Can you spot Ameera?

It was a really nice place, not too big to let the kids play by themselves and not too small for us to enjoy the day. The price was also quite reasonable for us to go again and the best part was that we can even bring our own food.

We really had a good time that day. Thank you to Mr and Mrs Tasya for inviting us and for MY special Nasi Ayam with Dada... heheheh and Happy Birthday to Heidi.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Invasion Dublin: Star Wars

As mentioned in one of my earlier posts, I had booked a family ticket for Invasion Dublin's Star Wars exhibition last Saturday. Taking the advice on the website, we went there early in the morning to get the best of whatever was on offer. There were already lots of people there as well as lots of replicas and Star Wars characters walking around on the grounds of the RDS so, we had the opportunity take pictures with them.

To the stormtrooper on the left:'re a bit short to be a trooper?

Obi-Wan: The force is strong in these two

Family pic with one of Jabba the Hut's crib guards. Not the one in black, the green one, OK?

Overall, it was quite a cool show but perhaps it could've been better especially with the amount of money that was paid. A couple of complimentary goodie bags would have been nice as souvenirs. Seriously, there's loads of free stuff at the other shows we've been to.

Hisham doing a Yoda impersonation while Mummy and Daddy take a break

Anyway, the important thing is the kids enjoyed the event as much as we did (probably more) and the best part is, they got a lightsaber each courtesy of their parents.

Jedi Academy - now enrolling

Of course, after that we took the opportunity to get a bit of  makan makan at one of Dublin's newer Indian buffet spots (all you can eat for only €6.50!). Unfortunately, due to my overwhelming hungriness and tiredness on the day, I totally forgot to take any pictures. Maybe next time!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Busiest Break, Ever!

This week was the longest bank holiday weekend in Ireland, at least for this year. It started from Friday until today - a whole four days. As quick summary, our weekend was filled with food and even more makan-makan as well as some leisure activities. It was really tiring but we had so much fun, especially the kids.

A totally random pic of people in my back garden!

BBQ Butter Squid and some gorgeous Spicy Beef Sausages

The weather on Friday was really bright and sunny in the morning but towards the afternoon it began to get a bit cloudy and even rained. Thank God, the rain stopped the minute we started our little impromptu-ish gathering. Impromptu in the sense that it started as a small going-away lunch thingy for a friend that was going home to Malaysia for good but ended up as a full-blown BBQ feast.

Very refreshing Strawberry and Peach Frappe

Extra creamy Mashed Potatoes with BBQ Butter Prawns topped off with some salad and cream black pepper sauce

It was a last-minute plan but it was still a success. I just provided the main dishes (forgot to take a picture of the Pasta I made) and some side dishes while my friends brought along some other food for the BBQ.

Watch this space for my report on our weekend activities especially all the gorgeous food, in the next few days!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Easter Holidays

Although I'm not working, I mean not working in the going to the office sense, I feel like it's been forever since I've had a decent break, be it a Bank Holiday (as official non-religious public holidays are called in Ireland), school holiday or any other type of holiday. My definition of a proper holiday means I can wake up after seven in the morning, don't have to take a shower as soon as I wake up and doing anything remotely involving getting the kids ready for school, including dropping them off wherever they need to be. I'm sure lot of people out there understand, right?

Fortunately, this week would be the longest Bank Holiday weekend we would get until summer comes along. Yayy for me! It's the Easter Holidays and most of people will have Friday off work (for Good Friday) until Easter Monday. As with most of these things, we don't actually celebrate Easter as a religious holiday but still, the thought of having the short break makes me ever so happy as I'll be able to be with my complete little family.

What Husayn got at school plus some other things that he made.

At the moment, the weather forecast looks great and InsyaAllah, it'll be the same over the weekend. A BBQ would be nice as well as a visit to the park. I don't know. We don't have any concrete plans yet but what we'll definitely be doing on Saturday, is pop over to a Star Wars exhibition in town. Pretty cool, eh?

Till then, to everyone in Ireland, do enjoy your break with lots of dinosaur-size Easter Eggs like the one I got from my hubby which he got from his office earlier today.

PS: I had to fight with the kids to get to eat this giant chocolate egg. Hisham just refused to let go of it and wanted it all for himself. Just like Mummy...ahaks!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

March - The Longest Month

I personally think that the month of March is the longest month in the year, espeially this year. Would you agree with that?

Hmmm...on the very last day of March, I just couldn't believe it was still not April yet. The month went by slowly until one day, during one of my grocery shopping trip with the kids, theykept asking people what day it was? Well, I remember that one sales lady at the check-out counter who actually took the time to reply that it was a Friday. Husayn said...'s April....It's April Fool's Day! 

...and laughed at his own "joke". The sales lady smiled politely and continued with her scanning.

But, phewwwww. What a relief to know that March is out of the way. It was a good month though. You see, lots of thing happened but this is a quick summary of the few that I can remember, for now.

To start off the month, my car brokedown and needed to be towed to the garage. I was on my way home from picking-up my daughter from her weekend activities and was alone with the kids with no purse on me as the trip was only meant to be a short one. Thank God, I had my phone with me. So, to cut the story short, it was a very long and tiring day. To add to the misery of the day, there was misunderstanding between ourselves and the tow-truck driver which resulted in the car being sent to a very posh car dealer (Land Rovers, Jaguars, etc.). My husband was worried would be if that particular dealer worked on the car. Alhamdulillah, everything eventually went well and the car was sent to our garage of choice. The car's OK by the way.

Then there was St. Patrick's Day. When I first came to Ireland, I thought it was some sort of National Day (like Hari Merdeka) as the highlight of the day involved a parade through the city center (I just love parades!). Well, we don't celebrate it in the traditional Irish sense but do join in the festivities every now and again. This year, we decided to go to the park that was at the centre of the celebrations and have a picnic with my friend Mrs AngeliNatasya and the kids. She cooked a lovely Nasi Lemak with Sambal Sotong which we ate before enjoying the funfair near Merrion Square. Nyummm...

We certainly had a very good time. And, the kids really enjoyed it too with the rides, face-painting and all the silly costumes that people wore on the day.

The very last week was special too. Well, I went to meet Rachel Allen (again) but this time it was for a cookery demostration. It also happened to be my first night out alone without my kids and the hubby for a very long time. It was a new experience for me and it was great. I just loved it as I just love anything to do with food. Hehehe...

Due to a bad weather camera, I don't have any nice pictures with Rachel. Boohoo...

I also did try to make the crumble cake that was baked in the cooking demo - twice the following week. Then, with a few tweaks that suited me, I managed to bake a crumble cake that was oh-so delicious and is as refreshing as cakes can be! I'll post the recipe for this soon.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Oucchhh... I Think It Hurts

Last night, as with most nights, I was in the bathroom to give my kids a shower before they go to bed. While washing a very active Hisham in the shower cubicle, he suddenly fell and obviously hurt himself. There was blood coming out of his mouth non-stop. Within a few seconds there was blood all over his chest and tummy.

I panicked but kept it together just enough to ask Ameera to call her Daddy who was downstairs. A few minutes later, after I had calmed down a bit, I cleaned the blood and put him on the bed when I realised there was really deep cut on his chin.

Oh my God! I reverted back into panic mode. My two other kids must have sensed my feelings and cried when they saw me. In a way, it was kind of funny, no was sweet to see my kids crying over their little brother because they thought that something really bad had happend to him. Seriously though, I was all over the place when I saw all the blood and cut. To tell you the truth, I am not as bad as my Dad or my siblings. They can't even stand the sight of blood...ahaks. OK, maybe it runs in the family...heheheh.

My husband calmed me down and he said it was nothing to be too worried about as it was just a small cut but I didn't think so.

Since we had to leave the house anyway as we didn't have any bandages or plasters left in the house, I insisted that we consulted with our good friends, Mr. and Mrs. Tasya. Based on our description of the cut and the pics above (no, we weren't thinking of a blog entry when taking the pics!) they suggested that we bought ourselves a pack of Steri-Strips on our way to their place to give Hisham some much needed special medical attention. Oh goodness, a big Thank You to you guys for your help. We owe you big time, as always.

My poor baby. I think he was in a bit of shock since his fall as he has been quite quiet. I hope he'll be fine soon.

Seemingly, chin injuries are inevitable as it runs in the family. One of my younger brothers has one and so do two of my SILs as confirmed by my FIL.

Monday, April 18, 2011


I love tulips. It's one of my favourite flowers and I never fail to plant them in my back garden. In fact, even when I lived in a small apartment which had an even tinier garden, I used to plant them. I really think the tulips are going to be one of the many things that I'll miss whenever I leave this country and go home to Malaysia (one day eventually!). I don't think I'll be able to do so. it possible now?

Very warm and humid weather = Tulips? Well, if people can build a snow-covered mountain slope in the middle of a desert, why can't people grow tulips in Malaysia?

Anyway, the tulips in my back garden have been in bloom for a while now which coincides with the good weather that's beginning to look better by the day. Look at my kids and Mrs Tasya's as they enjoyed themselves (still in their PJ's) picnicking in the back garden.

Here's hoping the weather will stay like this so the kids can continue to enjoy the same things that I enjoyed when I was a kid back home in sunny Malaysia.

PS: Some of my tulips have been vandalised by that small boy in the stripy pajamas.Noooooo...

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Owhhh.. my looks like for the past weeks, I've only updated my blog once a week now and it's only when there's a special occasion in my life. Like today, for instance. It's my beloved hubby's 33rd Birthday.

I've been so busy for the past few days including yesterday. I didn't get enough sleep and rest and when there was a break in things to do, I was out of the house to get some stuff to cook. This morning, while my hubby took a quick nap after getting the kids breakfast, I made him a quick surprise birthday cake. Actually, since I first heard of rainbow cakes I've always wanted to bake one but somehow, I wasn't rajin enough to prepare the many layers of colour. So, instead of the rainbow's seven, I've decided to make only two. OK, maybe I could say four layers if I wanted to show more of an effort...hahaha.

So, this is what the cake looks like inside.

I basically wanted to use red velvet or normal white cake recipe but I like the taste of a swiss roll so, I used Kak Mas from Ilham Dapur Kek Gulung's recipe as a starting point and it was surprisingly, really simple.  I simply doubled the ingredients to make four layers in 8" round tins. Don't worry if you feel the batter is too thin because the cake wouldn't look nice and would be too big for the whole cake.


140 grams cake flour sifted
2 tbsp milk powder
6 eggs
120 grams sugar
1 tbsp essence vanilla
1 tbsp Ovalette (Omit if you don't have it)
120 ml vegetable oil
Food colouring

1 package Phildephia cream cheese
1 stick unsalted butter
1 cup sugar

Preheat oven at 170 degrees celcius and grease a baking tin with parchment paper. I only have 3 pans so I reused them.

Mixed all the ingredients except the oil until foamy. Then, stir in the oil with a spatula until well mixed. Divide the mixture and put in the desired food colouring. Pour the mixture into the baking tin and bake for 15 to 18 minutes each until lightly brown. Remove from the oven straightaway and turn out immediately onto a cake rack and cover with a clean towel until ready to frost.

Whip all the frosting ingredients until fluffy. Layer each cake with the cream cheese frosting and cover it all with the rest. Decorate it as desired.

My daughter actually asked me to draw the Vespa at the bottom of the cake. I'm not that artistic so she taught me how to do it in her style.

Ameera: Draw a semi circle, Mummy and two wheels and stick in a line and a dot for the handle and headlamp.

And...she put in the 6 candles. Well it's suppose to be 3 and 3 for 33.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

9 Years Already?

I wanted to post this last week but due to unavoidable circumstances, I wasn't able to do it then. You see, the 5th of April this year marked our (my husband and I) ninth anniversary. Yup, it has been 9 years (11 years if the single, college years were counted) with three kids, living abroad far away from our respective families. Thankfully, we managed to survive on our own here. Alhamdulillah.

We didn't do any big thing on the day or the day before or the day after. As is the norm these days, when it comes to special events, I just baked a special cake for our very special day. Well, I'm more than happy to have just my family around on the day for a little celebration of sorts.

True love is spending one day getting married... and the rest of your life feeling glad you did.
Happy Anniversary to you my beloved hubby. My love for you is like a circle. It has no END!

Thank you for everything. Semoga Allah sentiasa melindungi kita sekeluarga. Amin.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

Over here in Ireland and the rest of Europe, we celebrate Mother's Day today. I'm not sure why but it's a good thing for me I guess because where I come from, we celebrate it at a different time. This means that I'd be able to celebrate it twice a year if I wanted to.

Not that we celebrate it or treat the day differently with any other day but today I feel extra special as my kids competed with each other as to who was going to give me the "greatest card EVER". Hehehe. I just love it.

On Friday, when Husayn came back from school he gave me this.

How sweet, isn't it? And this was at the end of the card...

Of course, I can't forget Ameera who made a very special card for me. Two cards actually but I only managed to get a picture one of them. She's such a creative little angel. She just loves arts and drawing and with her brilliant imagination can make almost anything without any help.

Well thank you kids Mummy loves you so much and really, can't wait for Hisham's first card.

To all mothers out there especially my Mom and my Mother In Law: Happy Mother's Day. We love you so much and miss you guys lots.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Where Has Mummy Nana Been?

Eh, I'm here. Seriously, not that I was sOOoO busy to not be able to put up posts. I've still managed to get online and browse my blog every day while at the same time, reading other blogs. But somehow, when I want to start writing my baby son, Hisham will automatically climb on me and start ripping off my top (exaggerating here of course but it certainly feels that way) trying to get his food supply out of me! He'll push anything that gets in his way - including my laptop. He's going to be 2 next month and like some other toddlers, I still breastfeed him but the problem is that the breast milk is the ONLY thing he takes as food every  single day. Nothing else. He refuses any other food. OK, maybe sometimes he eats some baby fromaige frais but trust me, I have to use force and all my energy to make him eat the tiny pot of yogurt. And, when I try to feed him with other solid foods, either he throws tantrums or he starts playing with it until the food covers the whole floor. Sigh...

On the other hand, apart from being a very petite baby, he looks as healthy as can be. I do know at this stage he should get more nutrients to make him grow bigger and healthier. The problem is, (the same problem faced by other breast-feeding-stay-at-home moms), my baby won't eat anything else if I'm at home with him as he's just comfortable with only my milk 24-7. And that makes me super tired, with no other extended family to help around it's just so impossible to do so. Double sigh...

Anyway, not that I'm complaining. I'm just a bit worried. But if you guys have any workable tips, do let me know how to stop him from breastfeeding. The sooner the better. With my previous two kids, I've tried so many different things, from putting tamarind paste, ground coffee to taping my boobs with cellotape! Hahah...can you imagine? Ouch! When you want to take it off. With Hisham all these "techniques" just don't work and he just doesn't care what I do, he will try his best to get milk from me, morning and night.

Anyway, March was such a nice warming up month to welcome the summer ahead. The weather is not that great but we get good sunshine throughout most of the month and we even managed to go for a quick picnic in the park, pop out to a funfair and personally, I got to meet Rachel Allen (again) and had loads of parties to attend.

I know I've said this before, but I'll try my utmost to write more often because there are just lots and lots of stories, recipes and pictures that I would love to share. Till then, have a very happy weekend.
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