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Archive for April, 2009

I tried a new recipe, Bechamel which I came across in one of the blogs, belonging to an Egyptian-American sister.

 

I finally folded all the washed clothes and I still wonder when someone is going to invent a machine that can do that automatically because I hate the job! (I have seen the machine on Gerald Mc Boing Boing – can one of the engineers out there do that please?) 

 

I craved for some really good penang laksa so my dad brought me to this stall along Jalan Jelapang. Not even a single drop of kuah laksa was left! I practically ‘hirup’ the whole bowl.

 

I finished reading three novels – Kuseru NamaMu Kekasih by Maya Iris, Selagi Ada Dia by Aisya Sofea and aA + bB by Hlovate in two days.

 

I also realized that I need an additional bookshelf. I just have no more space to put any more books.

 

I unintentionally watched Point of View on NTV7. I was amused (and had a really good laugh) by some of the very contradicting (and stupid) comments made by the BN representative on racial-based political parties.

 

I managed to control my temper (or anger) towards my kids over the whole two days. I just let them do whatever they want – scream, play, fight, act – so, everyone seemed happier.

 

I tried to sleep for a minimum of 7 hours but I don’t think I like it very much. I had a headache after waking up, maybe because I am so used to sleeping a lot less.

 

However… I need to go back to my old schedule tomorrow. I promised to meet my supervisor early June so I need to catch up on my reading.

 

And yes, life is short!

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A Day at Eagle Ranch Resort

We discovered the Eagle Ranch Resort from the internet and decided to give it a try last weekend.

 

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Truth is, I was so mentally exhausted after completing one major take-home examination for Quantitative Research and one mini research project (which was not that “mini” afterall) for Qualitative Research. I needed a break. Since Monday was a public holiday for Perak (it was Tuanku’s birthday on Sunday), we left on Sunday morning for Port Dickson and stayed at the Resort for one night.

 

We had so much fun. I spent the full two days reading some novels which I didn’t have the chance to complete since it was just academic reading all the while. Seriously, I just couldn’t take it anymore.

 

Anyway, there were so many types of accommodation to choose from: the tepee (built exactly like a red-indian hut), the log cabin (too small for us), the bandwagon (it was also cool but just too small for the family) and the paddock chalet. Since my parents came along, we decided to stay at the Kampung House. It had a nice view, and most importantly, the kids got too busy feeding the fish as the pond was just outside the window!

 

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There were many activities we could choose from, but the kids were more interested in the swimming pool!

 

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On the way back from Port Dickson on Monday, we stopped by at PWTC – the Kuala Lumpur International Bookfair is back! Hah! There goes another RM300++!

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I spent half of Saturday attending a talk on Khalifah Method of Parenting.

 

Heard of the Khalifah Institute at Jalan Ampang? Some background on the Khalifah Institute and its founder, Allahyarham Prof. Muhammad Al Mahdi can be found here. I was especially touched when I read Prof. Muhammad’s letter when he found out that he had cancer, and a few years to live. He was definitely an inspiration, and may Allah grant him jannah for his efforts!

 

Anyway, it was an exceptionally interesting and informative session. I learnt a lot from the two trainers, Prof. Dr. Alini Marzuki and Puan Azra Banu. The talk reminded both of us that being parents is not easy (even worse, we will be questioned by Allah for what we have done) and we need to be trained for that. They shared with us the Khalifah Method of Parenting, including some tricks on how to handle your children especially when they grow older.

 

Putting things into practice for the past two days, we (especially me) have been trying to control our temper especially when the kids are being so ‘creative’. It is quite challenging, when the kids are already so used to our style of parenting for the past 6 years!

 

But, we have made it a point to remind ourselves, and remind each other what was discussed during the talk so that we can raise up our little kids to be Khalifahs of Allah.

 

And of course, seeking divine help is compulsory!

 

To young parents out there, check out what the Khalifah Institute has to offer here!

 

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The past few days have been full of excitement. I am glad it is all over, at least for the moment.

 

But then… as much I am thrilled with Ir Nizar’s win in Bukit Gantang, I still feel that as a society, we still have a long way to go. There are so many things that we need to improve… and there are so many things that need to change, for the better of course. Ir Nizar will definitely face challenges in the next few months, and all this is done to make this country a better place to live in. I was just talking to a friend of mine this morning – imagine the Opposition team in Parliament – Anwar, Lim Kit Siang, Lim Guan Eng, Karpal Singh, Haji Hadi, Wahid Endut, Azmin Ali… and now Nizar! Wow! A perfect team indeed!

 

I like to talk about change, because change is inevitable.

 

Change is what makes life interesting. Change is what makes a person, a better human being. Change is what everyone needs.

 

In trying to make changes, I think the first step is to realize that we need the change. Because if we don’t realize that we need to improve, then we will resist the change.

 

And I realized that I need to make more changes today.

 

I realized that I need to step back a little bit, take stock of my main strengths and weaknesses, accept that I have too many weaknesses that I need to improve, and find ways to overcome those weaknesses. Afterall, we are all human beings, with too many weaknesses. Only Allah, the AlMighty is perfect. Other than Him, no one else is perfect, or even close to perfect.

 

And to effect change, I must be aware that criticisms are extremely important. I must learn to accept it when people criticize me. It is like a ‘no hard feelings’ thing. Yes, I admit that this will be the hardest part, but if I resist being criticized, I will remain unchanged for the rest of my life!

 

This morning, one of the leaders in our organization gave a talk on transformation. It was very inspiring, and I learnt a lot from him and the vast experiences he had in life.

 

One thing that he said that really got to me was this. When he was asked what actually motivates him to come to work, he gave a very simple answer.

 

Life is like flying. You collect Enrich points everytime you take a flight. In life, you collect points from every good thing that you do – be it work, be it family, be it religion. These points are what you will bring with you to meet Allah when you die. Hopefully, you will have gathered enough points for you to ‘fly’ into heaven!

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Alhamdulillah, Allahu Akbar!

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My second semester as a part-time PhD student officially ended on 31st March 2009.

 

The last class on that Tuesday ended a bit early since we have covered what we needed to cover for the semester. But then again, similar to the other subject, I still felt I have a lot more to do. My knowledge is still, so limited. Yes, you get so much from the classes – you learn about what research is all about, you learn about the different approaches to research, you learn about how qualitative research is far more interesting than quantitative research, you learn to write academically, you learn the different tools of analyzing data… the list is endless.

 

But when you try to apply the knowledge and turn it into your own research proposal, and still, you don’t know where you are heading… I think that is a bad sign. I really still have, a long way to go. I am not even sure if I will complete it in the end and get that degree that I desire. I will just continue to put in as much effort as possible, with the little time that I have, and pray hard. I need divine help, seriously!

 

Anyway, dear husband was kind enough to accompany me to KL by taking some time off from work, so I am thankful for that. At least I get to take short naps in between the trip. J

 

But things didn’t all turn out well that day because on the way back after class, I misplaced the toll ticket!

 

We spent nearly 30 minutes searching for it at the Rawang R&R. It just wasn’t in the car. So, for the first time, we had to pay a full amount of RM63.80 (that was after 10% discount since we arrived after 12 midnight).

 

I was already accepting the fact that this payment was a ‘kaffarah’ on me… maybe Allah wants me to be reminded of certain things. But, when we got home, the ticket was there. In the car! It was actually hidden under the air-cond! How did it get there? Only Allah knows! So, we went again on Wednesday evening to get the refund, which Plus kindly gave us.

 

Allah is great.

 

He teaches us in so many ways, mysterious ways… and through that minor incident, I am again reminded that everything actually belongs to Him. And, He can take it back anytime He wants!

 

And my journey, as of today… is still very far…

 

PS: See this photo taken during the Bukit Gantang Nomination Day. Someone said to me, “macam Perang Uhud!”

 

Source: PerakExpress
Source: PerakExpress

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