May 22, 2008

Plans for Memorial Week

Memorial weekend is just days away and I know what are my plans for that long weekend. We have a BBQ gathering on Monday but for the rest of the days... Take a guess or scroll down to see.
Back of van all filled up.

Squeeze 2 more trays in the 2nd row.

Yes, I've finally made myself drive out to this Nursery called Sunrise. Its about 45 min drive and its worth it as plants are usually much cheaper out there. Its the largest nursery I've seen so far. Its even bigger than whole of Home Depot or Menard and its all filled with annuals and perennials. We spent almost 3 hours there and I had to bribe Greg with a McD Happy Meal treat after this shopping spree. I will shut my mouth up about how much I spent there but there goes my 1 month of piano lessons money... Time to recruit more students???

Driving down to the nursery just reminded me that last year when I made my annual trip, my dad was with me. He helped me plant alot of my plants and this year I just have myself... oh my back.. one guy who walked passed my 3 tier cart smiled and said "you sure have you work cut out this weekend". I know I'm gonna tire myself but when you go to this nursery, you need to make sure you do buy as much as you need but oh... the variety of flowers they have is just so wide... makes me go crazy like how a kid gets crazy in ToyRus. I'll post photos of the garden once all the plants are in the ground or potted.

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May 16, 2008

Last day at PreSchool

Today, its been an up and down day for us here. Being a last minute person, I had to wake up and quickly make Greg's Preschool Contact list, then wrap up 3 presents for his teachers then rush to school to get the list xerox-ed. I realized after leaving Greg in school that I didn't have breakfast. Oppss...

Besides being a crazy day, it was emotional too. I had to fill up the Thank You cards for Greg and he helped with the wordings. When he was about to sign his name, I noticed he was wiping his face. I suspected what it was and by the 2nd card, I knew for sure. He has had tears in his eyes everytime he came up with wordings for the cards. By the 3rd card, he was really down. I had to sit and tell him it was OK that it was his last day of school.

Yes, my baby is having a hard time saying goodbye to his preschool days. He has had a wonderful 2 years in preschool. His teachers have been lovely to him, teaching him school is a nice and fun place to be. Its amazing how both my kids started scared going to preschool and ending up excited about full day Kindergarten by the time they finish preschool. I'm very grateful my kids and I have had a good experience with the teachers and staff at our park district.

Its been hard for me too. I know summer is coming and I look forward to having fun with the kids free of any schedules. We are looking forward to spending our days at the waterpark but at the same time I've been feeling abit nostalgic. This is my last day taking my kid to preschool. The next time I'll be taking any kid to preschool will be my grandkids!!! Man... do I feel old now.... hahaha... I guess being in my late 30s... and still having a kid in preschool always made me feel still "young"... Oh well.... knowing me.. I'll survive and look forward to all my future adventures. As for preschool days... I will miss it .... hey.. Katherine if you need a buddy, give me a call and I'll come with you when you drop Cricket at preschool!!!

One of the best things about preschool... I've made awesome friends with these 2 ladies, Katherine and Sherill. I will miss the times where we all go hang out at Starbucks, Target or Costco while waiting for the kids. You gals did make my mornings interesting.. and for this.. I am grateful to have met you guys.
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May 14, 2008

I don't think I like Mother's Day

I hope everyone had a good Mother's Day. Here in Chicagoland, Mother Nature didnt' give us a break or did she? Well it was raining heavily and it was so windy that I could feel my house shake. What did I do... I decided to have a nice day and not rush out for Church. Shhh!!!! Please don't tell God that I've been sinful. Its Mother's Day... I do deserve a break. Well, I just stayed in bed and watched TV the whole day. It was between Hallmark and Lifetime Channel and boy I sure enjoyed myself. Hubby went to get us McD breakfast and man that was delicious (as long as I don't have to cook and clean up... anything is delicious). What did we have for lunch and dinner? I seriously don't remember... maybe it was leftovers and take-outs.. but definitely not my gourmet cooking.

I did have a very nice Mother's Day present from the kids... a pot of dianthus from Gilly and a hand drawn mug from Greg... but the bestest of all was from Hubby.. He vinyl tiled the steps in my garage and pegboarded my garage wall for me to hang my tools... and that was all done WITHOUT me asking him to do it. I told him that was the best present ever. Men out there.. if you want your wife to respect you and admire you and get extra "action".... that's the way to go.. do things for your wife without being told to do so!!!!!!

Then came my boy... he was starting to fight with his sister so I told him to take a nap. He said NO without hesitation... and I told him, "Its Mother's Day, you should nap and make mummy happy." He gave me that look tat said "I'm thinking here".... and then proceeded to tell me "I dont' think I like Mother's Day".... sigh.... I guess its gonna be a annual thing he won't be looking forward to... him having to make something for mummy and celebrate it... and yet not liking it when that day comes... hahaha.. too bad...
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May 8, 2008

One more year to Mammogram

Yesterday, May 7th was my Birthday. I just celebrated my 39th birthday... the last of my thirties... and next year I'll qualify for Mammogram.... Is it scary to be 39? No, I like my age.. I rather be where I am than in my twenties where we don't who we are and always trying to please everyone. Do I please anyone at this age? No but the difference is I don't care anymore. I'm just comfortable with who I am. I guess with a loving hubby and two lovely kids, who could ask for more. I could!!! hahahaha... look at the photos.. my hubby has always been camera "challenged"

I've added photos of us at home with my birthday cake. Hubby went out to get us an ice cream cake. We did go out for dinner at Mimi's Cafe at Orland Park. We were pleasantly surprise at the good service. We asked what was good as it was our first time there... Not only were the kids given "free" fries when we realize their kids food didn't come with fries, the co-owner/manager came out at the end with a box of muffins for us to take home. Yes, it was free. Later I told Gilly that if they had told the manager it was my birthday, we would have gotten free cake as well but Daddy already has cake at home. We can't be too greedy can we.

I got a call at 8pm from Katherine, she called to wish me a Happy Birthday when she realized from Bella that it was my birthday. She told me Bella had mentioned during dinner that Greg had told their teacher it was my birthday. Apparently I was having a big birthday party and that I was 53!!!!!!! Yeah.. 53!!!! Later greg said Bella must have misheard cos I was 26.. hahaha yeah.. my kids thinks I'm 26 and that Daddy is 46. Chris(Bella's daddy) commented that I sure look good for a 53. We sure had a good laugh about that...

I certainly did have a nice birthday... relaxed as Daddy did take the day off and "Ahmad" (chauffered, in Malay) the kids around.

Nice clear pic of us... when we were not ready..

We were ready but Daddy had his magic touch and made photos blurry..

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May 7, 2008

Matt's Birthday Party

Last Saturday we were at a birthday party. It was at not a usual party as we were invited to go watch Aladdin at Emerald City Theatre in Chicago (ah... no... not Admiral Theater !!!!). Yes, its the Disney's Aladdin and for the young audience version. The kids had a lovely time watching Aladdin. The kids had a good laugh a the jokes and even the parents were laughing as they added some "adult' jokes as well. By the end of the show, Greg was jumping up and down clapping his hands when each actor came for their final bow. Greg loved Genie the mostest as he says it. Gilly just can't get over how pretty Princess Jasmine is. Apparently it was their 1st show, and I guess being the guinea pigs, the production had a few hiccups like Jasmine's hair almost falling off... a few miss lines... but hey.. what the heck.. the kids had a blast of time. Greg got abit restless towards the end, but I guess its normal for a 5 year old to be restless. Gilly was enchanted by the actors that she sat still for once ... hahaha....

Kids with Jafar

Being the so popular Princess, it was hard to get to photo the kids with her..

but Gilly insisted on a photo of Jasmine... Your wish shall be Granted

Ever so cute and lively Iago

Greg's favorite ... The Genie

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Mee Goreng

Greg so happy there is so much noodles

Couple of weeks ago, our church had a fundraiser and the event was called "International Noodles Night". I was asked to make baked mostachioli for the Italians to eat which I thought was ridiculous. The Italians should do their part to cook true authentic Italian food for the occassion. I know its easy to cook but hey.. for a $30/person function.. you should come up with something more original than Prego sauce... Thank Goodness someone managed to get some Italian restaurant to donate 2 trays. Me like an idiot volunteered to cook "mee goreng". Yes our Malaysian mee goreng which I've only attempted once. Yes it was easy cooking the first time... so I thought I could do it for 200 people. hahahaha...

Ok.. now how much of noodles do I need.. the original recipe which I got from a blogger... only used like 150g of yellow noodles.. which means... I needed to triple the recipe just for a 1 lb of noodle... Some "know-it-all" from my church told me to cook 10lbs per tray.. and excuse me.. I needed to cook 2 trays.. so that means 20lbs in total... that's crazy... I didn't trust that advice. I managed to ask this Indonesian lady who happens to cater on the side.. she told me to use only 5 lbs each tray. Without hesitation she told me "mee goreng? just 5 lbs" and that I do trust as she does know what type of yellow noodles we use for our mee goreng.

I had 2 lovely ladies who came over to my house to help me with the cutting and washing up... and I do appreciate their help as it was a lot of help. Thanks Gemma and Theresa. Both of you made food preparation and cooking a happier and livelier task.

How did the noodles turn out??? It was delicious and spicy enough, I had to cook them 2lbs at a time so the first batch was too spicy for the locals. I had to refrain from using too much chili sauce but it was enough to sting some tongues. I ate some of it during the event but wished I could have more. Oh well... I'll just have to cook it again.

If some of you are interested, I got the Mee Goreng Mamak recipe from

Mee Goreng Recipe:

150 gm Noodle
1/2 cup boneless Chicken Meat
some Prawns and Fish balls
some tau kua (fried firm tofu)
1 Egg(beaten)
1/2 cup Beansprouts
150 gm Mustard greens-cut into 2-1/2 cm
2 clove Garlic-chopped
3 Shallots - sliced thinly
1-2 tbsp Chilli Paste (soaked dried chili that is blended)

1 tbsp Chilli Sauce
1/2 tbsp Tomato Sauce
1-2 tbsp thick Soya Sauce
1 tsp light soy sauce
Salt and Sugar

Shredded Cucumber
Chopped Spring
Onions Shallots crisps

1. Heat wok with 3-4 tbsp oil until hot and fry garlic until light brown.
2. Add shallots and chilli paste and fry further.
3. Mix in chicken meat, prawns and fish balls and stir fry.
4. Add in the noodle and all the sauces.
5. Add seasoning and sprinkle with a little water
6. Mix in all the fried ingredients together.
7. Spread all the ingredients around the wok.
8. Create an empty space in the center.
9. Add in the beaten egg into it and a bit more oil.Leave for about a minutes.
10. Then cover the egg with the ingredients and stir-fry evenly.
11. Finally add in mustard leaves and beansprouts
12. Stir another 3-4 minutes.
13. Remove the dish to a plate and garnish it.

*Note: I didn't use bean sprouts this round as the noodles were cooked 6 hours before the party and bean sprouts do get soggy after sometime.

I managed to buy good yellow noodles from a noodle maker in Chicago Chinatown.. if anyone that is in town and needs to get them, let me know and I'll point you to the grocery store. I love that noodle maker's noodle as it doesn't get mushy/soggy when cooked with sauce or soup.
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