I'm not talking about those creepy-crawlies, people. I'm referring my own babies as caterpillars or in Malay we call "ulat beluncas".

Last night during bedtime both of them were behaving exactly like caterpillars - squirming on the bed and refusing to sleep. We had the light switched off and the aircond turned on, hoping that a soothing environment would make them settle down.

But nooooo... Khayla soon sat up and bounced on the bed. Boing! Boing! Boing! Khadeeja became excited as well and rolled over, sticking her bum in the air as she attempted to go on hands and knees. And when she's excited, she lets out a high-pitch shriek that goes like this - 'Ehhhhhhhhhhaiihhhh!'

Khayla began to sing and act out Gwiyomi song in the dark. Khadeeja then got in the groove, rocking her small yet chubby body back and forth to her sister's singing.

Despite being exasperated by their antics, I couldn't help bursting in laughter. They both reminded me of those wriggling and constantly moving caterpillars - but a CUTE and ADORABLE version of course!

Tonight luckily Khadeeja decided to be an angel and went to bed early. Khayla is, however, still an unrepentant rule-breaker when it comes to bedtime.

Good night folks an sweet dreams!

My adorable "ulat beluncas"

Semalam lepas ambik Khayla kat sekolah dia, aku bawak dua adik-beradik ni jalan-jalan kat Prima Sri Gombak. Nak beli laundry net bag yang baru memandangkan yang sekarang zip nya dah rosak beyond repair dah. Huhu. Pastu, aku nak belikan seluar pendek untuk si Khayla pakai kat rumah sebab sekarang ni cuaca panas. Khayla ni jenis yang cepat berpeluh bila pakai seluar panjang kat rumah. Tidur dalam aircond pun boleh berpeluh-peluh jugak! Heee… macam la dia lahir kat London!

Anyway, lepas je parking dan dukung Khadeeja keluar dari kereta, mula-mula aku decide nak cari seluar pendek Khayla. Tapi lepas tu aku berubah fikiran pegi kedai barangan rumah kat seberang jalan dulu cari net bag.

Dengan dukung Khadeeja sebelah tangan dan pegang tangan Khayla di sebelah lagi, kami pun terkedek-kedek la pegi masuk kedai tu. Lama jugak aku cari net bag tapi tak jumpa. Last-last aku cuma beli benda lain je. Khayla pulak pantang masuk kedai je mula la berlari sana-sini. Ambik satu barang pastu letak kat tempat lain. Ambik pulak barang lain. So agak lama jugak kami kat kedai tu (padahal tak jumpa pun benda yang aku nak).

Lepas setengah jam, kami keluar pergi ke kedai baju di seberang jalan. Hubby kata kedai ni jual baju murah, tapi bila aku masuk takde jual seluar pendek untuk budak perempuan. Pembantu kedai tu bagitau mungkin kedai sebelah ada jual.

So kami pun masuk ke kedai sebelah. Senyap-sunyi je kedai tu. Kat dalam, ada dua orang pembantu kedai perempuan tengah borak-borak. Aku cari seluar pendek tapi sama jugak, takde. So kami pun keluar dari kedai tu dan pegi pulak kedai jual barangan bayi kat sebelah.

Dalam kedai tu, ada la jumpa seluar pendek yang aku berkenan. Ok la not bad harganya, RM19.90 sehelai. Time pembantu kedai tengah tolong Khayla cuba seluar tu, dua orang lelaki masuk kecoh-kecoh tanya perompak naik kereta Wira hitam ke?

Tak lama lepas tu, bunyi siren kereta polis dan polis pulak yang masuk soal siasat kat dalam kedai. Sebabnya pembantu kedai barangan bayi tu yang nampak jelas kereta perompak tu dan jugak rupa paras perompak tu.

Aku terpinga-pinga. Apsal citer pasal perompak ni? Alkisahnya kedai kat sebelah yang aku baru je masuk sebelum tu kena rompak tak sampai setengah jam sebelum tu. Bulat je mata aku tengok Khadeeja dan Khayla. Nasib baik terdetik hati aku nak pergi kedai di seberang dulu sebelum pergi kedai baju tu. Kalau tak, mungkin kami akan jadi mangsa rompakan jugak!

Syukur alhamdulillah, aku dan anak-anak aku terselamat dari bakal bencana. Walaupun kedua-dua pembantu kedai tu tak diapa-apakan, aku rasa mesti gerun jugak bila berhadapan dengan perompak.

Moral of the story, ada hikmah bila Khayla naughty-naughty main sorok-sorok kat dalam kedai barangan rumah tu. Hehe.
... Is not really a celebration. I've been a mom for almost 3 years now but for the past two years it was just a day to wish my mom Happy Mother's Day and forgetting that I'm a mom too.

Before I proceed I hope it's not too late to wish my blog readers (if there's any) Happy Mother's Day & Happy Teacher's Day! :) Hope you had a good celebration with your kids / students too ;)

Anyway this year I had a pleasant surprise from my baby girl Khayla. I wasn't expecting anything out of the ordinary when I fetched her from school last Friday. As usual when I arrived, I honked to let the teachers know since I couldn't leave my baby Khadeeja unattended in the car.

From afar I saw Khayla's teacher helping her put on her shoes and holding her hand as they walked to the school gate. Khayla was holding a red piece of heart-shaped paper in one hand which I assumed was her school project. In the other, it appeared like she was holding a small branch.

When they stepped out of the school gate, it turned out she was holding a bouquet of carnations, which the teacher explained with a smile, is a Mother's Day gift from the school. But she quickly told that Khayla also has her own gift - a Mother's Day card which she made herself!

My first Mother's Day card from my two-year-old


My heart swelled so much as I took the card from my baby girl (she's only two years old, peeps!) and then her teacher took a photo of us. Awww…

Being a mom is not always easy for me. When I had Khayla two years ago, I was so overjoyed to receive the much-awaited child of ours that I overlooked a lot of the challenges of being a mom. Khayla was a clingy baby but I did not notice because I was as clingy to her as she was to me. When Khadeeja arrived, although I was as thrilled to welcome my second baby and love her as much as I love my firstborn, that elated feelings sort of toned down considerably with experience of raising a baby before. I began to see things in a more practical manner, and being practical is just so… exhausting.

Having a precocious toddler and an active baby means I have to do everything quickly and fit things around their clocks. For example, cook three dishes in less than 15 minutes. Accompany Khayla in the toilet and while waiting, wash Khadeeja's dirty diapers. Read my study notes while they are busy playing (5 minutes tops before Khadeeja wails to be picked up), breastfeed her while feeding Khayla.

Sometimes I did not even have time to take my bath, then I would have to rush to Khayla's school without a shower. Sometimes I have to sacrifice my studies to put the kids to bed for their afternoon nap (the girls would sense that I was not sleeping and would stay up till I settled down and napped with them). Sometimes when the girls fight over toys I just want to throw the toy out of the window just to stop the loud cries and screams. Always, my house is messy because I just do not have the time to tidy up or because I know it would stay tidy for just half an hour. And you know I have this obsession for organisation, so this stresses me out a lot :(

But every time I thought I just want to throw up my hands in surrender / exasperation, the kids will do something to remind me how lucky I am to have them around, even though nothing much gets done and I'm living in a pigsty.

Things like flinging their arms around me in a tight hug. Mouth-to-mouth kisses. Khadeeja's wild chuckles and bright eyes as I make funny faces or sounds, or tickle her. Khayla's very adorable gwiyomi acts and just the way she says 'Ma-mak'.

To this, I wish myself 'Happy Mother's Day' because it is just that - being a mother is a happy experience, every single moments every day.




Dah hampir seminggu aku tak berapa sihat. Demam selsema yang berjangkit daripada anak-anak yang dah menular ke aku, sekarang dah upgrade jadi batuk pulak. Perubahan cuaca yang kejap2 panas, kejap2 hujan pun menyumbang kepada faktor tak sihat ni. Hmm. Sabar je la, semoga penyakit ni menghapus dosa aku yang berkoyan-koyan ni!

Anyway, walaupun tak sihat aku gagahkan jugak pergi kelas sebab semalam ada presentation. Cuaca buruk menyebabkan aku terpaksa bawak sekali anak-anak ke UM sebab takut terlewat.

Presentation berjalan lancar walaupun aku terpaksa cut banyak point sebab tak nak markah kena potong. Lepas abis presentation aku mintak excuse nak balik awal dengan alasan tak sihat. Nasib baik lecturer ok je.

On the way balik tu, terperasan whatsapp Kak Ret pesan ambik brownies Kartikasari yang dia bawak dari Bandung. Dalam hati, I loike, I loike! Hehe. Even sebelum aku beranak lima bulan lepas aku teringin sangat nak brownies Kartikasari ni tapi takde pulak sapa2 yang pergi Bandung masa tu. Aku suka bangat (tetiba accent Indonesia pulak) brownies ni. Sedap dan ada lapisan flaky kat layer atas brownies yang sangat la heavennn!

So malam tu jugak aku pegi ambik brownies daripada Kak Ret. Ingat nak bayar harga brownies memandangkan aku pesan kat dia, tapi dia tak nak pulak, katanya memang dia plan nak bagi kat kawan-kawan pun :) Heee... Mesti lagi sedap bila orang kasi ^_^ Thanks Kak Ret!


Ni la rupa menatang brownies yang diidam-idamkan tu...

Sampai kat rumah aku tengok Kak Ret bukan setakat kasi brownies Kartikasari ni, tapi dia ada bagi a few stuffs jugak:


Terima kasih Kak Ret! Love the souvenirs especially brownies tu :)
Sedar tak sedar, dah lima bulan aku ambik cuti tanpa gaji. Time flies fast. Perasaan? Entah la. Mixed feelings inside.

First of all, aku suka spend time dengan anak-anak. Suka dapat menikmati masa yang tak terhad melihat Khadeeja membesar di depan mata sendiri. Menjaga dia sendiri. Menyusukan dia sendiri. Compare dengan sebelum ni, aku takde problem stok susu berkurangan. Bila dia nak menyusu, aku susukan. No wonder supply susu yang dipam pun tak berkurangan jugak dalam freezer. Tapi most of all, aku happy melihat dia membesar dengan happy jugak.

Masa Khayla baby dulu, aku memang struggle sikit nak maintain production susu sebab kat ofis aku memang busy dan stress. So susu pun berkurangan. By the time dia 5 bulan, aku terpaksa beri dia makan sebab kalau tak, confirm tak cukup susu yang aku bekalkan kat nursery hari-hari!

Dan aku suka mendengar celoteh Khayla setiap hari. Menjemput dia dari sekolah. Melayan aksi manja si kakak yang mengalahkan si adik. Bawak mereka pergi ke playground. Ya, aku rasa ni ialah part yang paling best tentang unpaid leave ni.

Lagi satu, aku dah tak stress fikirkan masalah orang lain (masalah kakitangan atau masalah kerja). Aku cuma fikirkan masalah diri-sendiri je. Yalah, bukannya aku ambik cuti tanpa gaji ni untuk bergoyang kaki je. Hopefully aku dapat habiskan MBA tahun ni, supaya lepas ni aku dah tak payah fikir pasal assignment, exam, thesis. Dulu aku mungkin sanggup nak melaluinya sebab fikirkan rezeki anak lambat lagi. Tapi bila dah jadi macam ni, takkan aku nak berpatah balik kan? Aku tak suka buat kerja alang-alang. So sekarang ni, my biggest stress ialah nak siapkan assignment je. Kalau tak siap, setakat hilang markah tu je. Tak de la kena maki-hamun atau kena jawab kat boss, atau kena potong gaji pun!

Tapi at the same time, ada kekurangan jugak bila tak bekerja. Pertama, most of the time aku cuma ada anak-anak untuk layan aku bercerita. Kadang-kadang, aku call mak (tapi lately, dia selalu busy dengan aktiviti kemasyarakatan merangkap sosial dia. Tak boleh salahkan dia jugak, sebab dia pun bosan jugak duduk kat rumah). Ada masa jugak, aku catch up dengan kawan-kawan lama macam Kak Za. Tapi takkan la aku nak call dieorang hari-hari kan? So, kesimpulannya bila jadi full-time housewife kehidupan sedikit lonely.

Nasib baik ada jugak geng ofis / team lama aku yang kadang-kadang akan berhubung melalui Whatsapp, bertanya pendapat dan bercerita tentang berita dari ofis. At least tak de la aku macam kera sumbang sangat.

Secondly, aku dah terbiasa ada duit sendiri. Masa bekerja, aku tak payah fikir panjang kalau nak beli baju ke, toys ke, makan kat restoran mahal ke, pergi spa ke, atau pergi bercuti sebab ada duit gaji sendiri untuk buat semua perkara-perkara tu.

So bila duit gaji bulan terakhir aku dah habis dibelanjakan, aku rasa sedikit meroyan jugak la secara jujurnya. No more makan kat luar. No more keluar jalan-jalan sebab keluar je, means duit pun keluar jugak. No more pampering my kids dengan baju baru, toys baru. No more. Even semalam selepas sebulan terperuk kat rumah akhirnya kami keluar ke KLCC, bila makan kat food court yang paling cikai tu pun aku rasa sangat mahal. Eh, camane aku boleh makan kat sini hari-hari ye? Aku terfikir. Beli air je dah RM5!

Dan akhir sekali, ya. Walaupun aku kadang-kadang rasa bosan jugak kerja dengan syarikat berprestij (biasalah, syarikat besar bermakna birokrasi pun besar dan karenah manusia pun macam-macam), tapi tak dinafikan ada imej tertentu jugak yang perlu aku bawa di depan kawan-kawan dan keluarga. Family aku especially mak aku bangga sebab aku kerja dengan syarikat ni. Pernah kawan aku bagitau dia nak anak dia ikut jejak langkah aku - belajar rajin-rajin dan kerja dengan syarikat terkemuka. Aku sendiri pun tentulah nak anak aku jadi orang yang berjaya jugak. 

Masalahnya, aku sendiri ragu-ragu sama ada definition berjaya tu ialah apa yang aku alami sekarang. Berjaya ke kalau kerja di syarikat terkemuka tapi sentiasa rasa tak de life dan tak suka dengan kehidupan kerjaya sekarang? Adakah aku perlu ubah definition berjaya tu atau ubah attitude aku terhadap kerjaya sekarang? Kalau aku teringatkan adik ipar aku yang dah belajar bersungguh-sungguh dan cuba dapatkan kerja di tempat aku tapi tak berjaya, aku rasa insaf sekejap. Maybe aku take for granted je kerjaya aku ni, padahal ramai orang yang menanti peluang yang aku dah dapat. Tapi… mungkinkah ada peluang yang lebih membahagiakan di luar sana?

So entah la. Sebenarnya aku buat keputusan ambik cuti tanpa gaji untuk tahu apa pro dan con kalau aku berhenti kerja dan jadi full-time mom. Kesimpulannya, aku masih lagi berbelah-bahagi. Kalau takde masalah kewangan, mungkin aku tak de la kalut sangat kot nak buat keputusan dari awal lagi. Sometimes terfikir jugak nak buat perniagaan sendiri supaya aku boleh sentiasa dengan anak-anak aku. Cuma… bila aku tengok kehidupan orang business ni, kadang-kadang lebih dahsyat daripada orang makan gaji. Aku jadi tak yakin pulak.

Oh hati, moga diberi petunjuk bila cuti dah nak berakhir kelak!

... Is going down the drains. Seriously.

Yesterday I thought of baking home-made chocolate chip cookies using a recipe that I found online. So after fetching Khayla from her school, I drove to a baking supplies shop nearby Giant Batu Caves.

These are some of the stuffs I picked - self-raising flour, brown sugar, chocolate chips, butter, sugar sprinkles (so we could have more fun baking the cookies), a packet of Oreo cookies which Khayla asked for, and cake mix (I was thinking of baking red velvet cupcakes as well) that costed me RM7.50 a packet. 

When I brought those stuffs to the counter, the girl who minded the store calculated everything and told me that the total price was RM44. Naturally, I was shocked! It wasn't that many items and only to bake one type of cookies, and I spent almost RM50. 

At first I thought she had done something wrong like scanning a few items twice. When I reached home and checked the receipt, I noted that everything was in order. Apparently home-made cookies cost more to bake nowadays, it's cheaper to buy them from stores (the Oreo cookies are just RM3.50).

Then this afternoon, I noted that I've run out of cooking oil, milk and eggs. Again, I went to the nearest grocery store to get these staples and also a few other groceries namely: 

1. 1 liter Ribena drink
2. 1 liter mineral water
3. A carton of juice
4. A carton of ready-to-drink green tea 
5. 350ml bottle of Coke. 
6. Milk (I chose the lower price between two familiar brands)
7. Cooking oil

The checkout counter told me that everything was RM37. Again, it reminds me of how little the value of money nowadays.

I remember when I was small, we could buy nasi lemak for 50 sen (complete with fried anchovies and half a boiled egg) or even 30 sen (the kind of nasi lemak sold in small plastic packets complete with sambal, a quarter of a boiled egg, and a slice of cucumber, and you meshed it together and ate it right from the packet). And with RM1, you can get 3 pieces of roti canai.

Now a standard nasi lemak (no chicken or whatsoever) will set you back by at least RM2. And 1 piece of roti canai is the same price of 3 pieces of roti canai back in the early 90s.

So basically a budget of RM500 per month for groceries at present time is a very skimpy budget. There's very few things that those RM500 is going to get you. Maybe if you consistently ate rice with eggs and dried or salted fish,  this amount can last you that long, no problem.

I can't figure out how some people can be super-rich and spend their time shopping for the latest clothes, shoes, makeup and handbags while just living off their husband's income. Their biggest worry is probably which smartphones to choose or which place to go for vacation.

Here we are on the other side of the world worrying about how to stretch the value of money so that we can last till the end of the month comfortably. 

I can't imagine how it is for families earning lesser income than ours and with a lot more children than we have. God bless them. No wonder people are mostly unhappy nowadays.