Friday, 28 February 2014

From His Pocket Money

Somebody has been asking ever so nicely (with the occasional whine) for a phone upgrade.

Been asking Mommy to pass her phone to him if she plans to upgrade hers. Well, the thing is, Mommy's phone need an upgrade too as it's been throwing tantrums lately.
Nothing too fancy.

Nothing too expensive.

He's content with a cheap Samsung smartphone. Mommy probably gonna change hers to a Samsung too. Nothing expensive. She just can't stomach paying 4 figures for a phone.

His first phone was bought by Mommy. This time, the phone will be paid from his savings. His own pocket money. Can't serve everything on a silver platter for the kid, you know?

Thursday, 27 February 2014

A Heavenly Treat

Sometimes help comes just in time when you need it without too much trouble seeking for one.

I was searching high and low for a nice cake to buy for my big boss (I mean BIG BOSS) and the usual Secret Recipe & other cake shops selection are getting a tad boring. Just as I was cracking my head and looking up the usual contacts to make an order, Small Kucing's Mamarazzi came to the rescue. She tagged me to this Heaven Premium Ice Cream Cake page and I decided to check both their FB page and their website. Got intrigued enough to make some queries about ordering cake and intrigued enough to be "muka tembok" and ask to join their tasting/review session. Hohoho
We went there after work yesterday. Located at 10 Boulevard, PJU 6A, it was rather easy to get there though the shop is kinda secluded if you aren't looking for it purposely.

pssstt... parking rate quite reasonable here.
Kepoh-kepoh looking at the menu before entering the shop. Long list wor. Few pages some more.

Quite nice selection. Western food lah. Though nothing too heavy. No nasi OKAY... LOL
They even have a play area corner. Nice...
After kepoh-kepoh at the decor and stuff, kepoh-kepoh tasting their homemade ice-cream pulak. Yummmss... (Notice the happy faces there?)
What the shop offered that day.

Chocolate, blueberry, vanilla, strawberry, mint, coffee... Well, their names are fancier but I cannot remember. But I do remember ALL the ice cream I tasted were nice. ;)
Ice cream cakes and some cupcakes available. We got to bring back some! *lucky us* hehehe

Kepoh all done. Talk talk a bit then it's time to eat!
We were served with this delightfully creamy wild mushroom soup. 
and Chilli Cheese Melt. I'm not really a fan of Chilli although the two boys are, but I had no problem wiping this off the plate. 
I chose this for hubby, Beef Mex Tostada. Well, actually we shared all the dishes served. Good thing too... because in the end we need space for dessert!

The Beef Mex Tostada tasted mild at first but the heat kicks in after a while and boy, a few second after putting it into my mouth, I felt the fire. 
I like this Tomato Bruschetta. Even Raimie loved it, and he had two slices! Tomatoes, black olives, feta cheese and parmesan cheese on garlic bread. Awesome... So awesome, I forgot I was eating vegetable. hah hah
Latte for the boys. Mommy drank sky juice. (Mommy wanted to wear an S sized t-shrt, remember?) LOL
The meal ended with ice cream cupcakes!
Thank goodness we didn't eat a heavy dinner and saved space for dessert.

A nice dinner.

A nice evening with warm and friendly host.

And I got to order two cakes for Friday.

Plus we brought back more cupcakes home to eat.

WIN!

Thank you Heaven Premium Ice Cream Cake for a nice evening. Can't wait to share our cake with my #krazirunners kaki during our next gathering. ^^

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Something Gotta Give... For the Quest Of A Lot Of As

Son is sitting for his big exam this year; the UPSR.
Ujian Penilaian Sekolah Rendah.
Primary School Evaluation Test.

THE exam before going into secondary school next year.

He was completely ambivalent about the prospect of going to boarding school before this, despite Mommy’s effort to “brainwash” him but I guess his teachers are more persuasive. Kids do listen to their teachers more than the parents once they enter school anyway. Like, really.

Now, he is all gungho about it and is motivated enough to do revisions himself without much persuasion to get good results. His parents on the other hand, still kinda had to be forced to sit with him and revise together. Hohoho

Anyway, his school has arranged for extra classes 4 times a week on weekdays after schooling session and Son opts-in.

We had hoped (well, I had hoped) for Son to continue with the SRA (religious school) and do his UPSRA (the "agama" version of UPSR) this year, but I guess it’ll be too hectic for Son to cope. Well, if the Ustazahs allow him to enter class an hour late, that is.

They don’t seem to like the fact that some students are late because of their morning school despite the fact that these students do really made the effort to attend classes instead of just missing them. Son had had to endure their “displeasure” for the past years.

He had done his UPKK (Ujian Penilaian Kelas KAFA, which is basically an exam that covers the ability & competency of students to read Al-Quran, knowledge of the way of Islam & being a muslim plus reading skill in jawi and also Arab language) exam last year; which is another big exam for the SRA and gotten all As in it and I do think he does well in the Agama stream. We even asked Son to consider the Islamic school stream for secondary school. I know quite a number of successful friends who entered secondary religious school (Sekolah Menengah Agama) and entering one doesn’t mean you are bound to come out as Ustaz or Ustazah. No, not at all.

But we finally decided that Son has no choice to stop going to the SRA. It's hard to continue when one doesn't receive support from the teachers too. Maybe it's hard for us because we didn't fight enough but ah well...

Our respect to students and parents who manage to make studying at both stream work in Standard 6.

For Son, all the best with studying and for the exam. We’ll try our best to support you.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Water Cut. Water Rations.

Let the mayhem to buy containers begin!

A few friends living in Balakong had been experiencing water cuts for the past two weeks and looks like it ain't gonna end soon.
 
We experienced the same problem last year and had no water for weeks during the dry spell. 

Better be over-prepared than unprepared, right? Time to take out the containers and store water, use them sparingly, not waste water and hope to survive water rationing or cuts!

Uhuhuhu~

Sunday, 23 February 2014

A Mall's Charity Run

So there's this charity run organised by Mid Valley City Megamall today, the Mid Valley City Charity Run; and somehow I was registered to run in it. Wasn't too keen about doing it initially because well... at the risk of sounding snobbish; I really rather not wake up at 5am just to go out and drive into KL to run for 30minutes.

But I did and I had fun. With friends and colleagues.

That's what counts, right? Can't be all too serious about running, all the time.
Seconds before the flag-off, at 7am sharp. 

I chose to linger, snap some photos and only made my way to cross the start line 3 minutes after flag off.
The route was still pretty much packed so can't even run in the first loop and I alternated between walking and slow jog. Passed by familiar faces whom I greeted (or rather hollered). 
Second loop soon after and to mark that you did the second loop, we were given a balloon to run with. (Actually, if you didn't have the ballon, you still get the medal if you sauntered by the finish line after 8.30am. Hohoho)

Didn't stop at the water station as didn't feel the need to. Continued to run. Continued to kacau people. Saw a few little kiddos running alongside their mom so I clapped encouragement to them. They are so CUTE!

Finish 27min later so yeah, nothing fast. Someone told me later it wasn't even a 5K distance. Just about 3.7K? I didn't switch on the GPS on my Timex so I had no idea how far I did.

After finishing, I lingered in front of the Finish arch so that I could take photos of my colleagues finishing. Got "scolded" by hubby who told me to go queue for my medal and goodie bag first, in case everything habis. LOL

Queue for each station was long but fast moving and met a few other runners while queuing and had fun chatting with them. Some I recognised, some their names completely escaped me. Sorry folks!
Since it's a Mall run, there were many sponsors from the tenants of the mall which made the goodie bag pretty awesome!

Not in photos, as the food kena walloped earlier were egg tarts, donuts, Gong Cha tea, Nestle breakfast cereal and of course MILO!

All in all,a fun event for non-runners. Actually for runners too; because of the freebies. HAHAHA But running wise, unless we started way in front of the pack, we can't really run much as the one lane closed for runners was pretty jammed with walkers.

But hey! I saw that my colleagues had fun. Good for them. They enjoyed a good morning out today, I hope. ^^

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Same Interest, Different Taste

Daddy would love to read something like this. 
Kids being kids, Son loves comics like this.
But he read something like this too. Mommy noticed he's been reading similar kind of books lately. 

Mommy?
She's not an adventurous reader and she sticks to what she likes. 

How's this for a short post? ;-)

Whose making trips to the Big Bad Wolf Fireball Sale? Tomorrow is the last day and I know a couple of friends who are making several trips there!

Mommy wanted to buy the "Hansons Marathon Method" from Amazon.com but damn! The shipping cost cost more than the book itself! Huhuhu

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Titi 100 : The Not Running A Race Edition

Both Zaini and I actually registered for Titi Ultra Marathon, but we decided not to be crazy hardcore like some of you runners out there (heh heh) and slinked out from it when we still had the chance. 

When the organiser was looking for volunteer and support crew, I immediately gave our name to be a part of the team. Not running, pass water and fruits to Ultra runners also can la. ;-)
We were stationed at CP4 together with 6 awesomely helpful and chirpy Pengakap and two deadbeat medics.
Turn left to CP4, runners! 
Hard work zone!

What's the big deal about carrying heavy stuff, right? At least it didn't involve us running uphill this time. Driving through the route with hubby, I was like "WHOAH! When is this hill ending???" 

Salute those running it. Both 50K and 100K. More so those running starting their run under the blistering hot 4pm, ran in rain at one point and finishing like some 18 hours later.
Both hubby and I were at CP4 and CP7. 100K runners need to see us twice Saturday night and Sunday morning. Whether they wanted to or not. ^^

Son helped out too but he decided to ditch us and follow his buddies; Suzie and Arman's kids and helped out CP5.
 One photo before work begins. 

The first 100K runner arrived at around 7.40pm after the CP got really busy after 8pm. A steady stream of runners came in an hour or so after that; some alone, some in pairs, some in threes. Some runners had some issues and unfortunately I wasn't able to help since I'm clueless about pretty much everything and the medics didn't seem to have anything to help either.  They were actually pretty much unable to do anything other than smoke, eat and drink copius amount of 100-Plus nicked from the CP cooler box, that is.
 
After the first runner arrival, Zaini shuttled back and forth from CP4 every hour or so to the roundabout about 5K away to check on the two boy scouts stationed there for road marshalling.Can't just leave two kids in the middle of nowhere and forget about them all through the night, can we?
 
 
It was really great that Yim who is an accomplised ultra runner accompanied me later. His wealth of experience was shared with runners (and myself too). He took care of those coming in to CP7 after running 63.5K, not only handing out drinks, fruits and food but also dished out advices and giving a bit of pep talk to motivate runners. Plus being stern not to let runners linger too long, if they want to reach the next CP before CP closing time too! Heck! He even gave away some of his stash to needy runners : sprays, ORS, gels...

Yim even drove for kilometres in the middle of the night to scour for some ice for the runners when it was apparent for us that we won't be getting any more ice for our CP. His effort was timely because runners arriving CP7 did ask for ice and that was despite what was being told to us earlier; that runners won't be needing any ice anymore. Thank you Yim! *muaks*

We were supposed to close CP7 at 3.30am and the lorry and bus to pick up the scouts arrived around that time. While the scouts got busy to close the water station, there were still runners arriving to CP7 and we were informed that there were more behind them.

Not wanting to let the runners arrive to an empty CP7 without any fluid repleshisment at the very least, we put aside a few bottles of 100-Plus, mineral water and some fruits and carried it to the junction where they would run before the turn into CP7 proper, and stood by the roadside waiting for them with what little we had. 

Some runners arrived later, some still wanted to go on and some had doubts as they seemed to be in pain. It was up to the runners to decide whether to DNF (did not finish) or to continue even after the cut-off time but Yim was on hand to advice the runners on what to expect should they decide to trudge on. Some got us worried as they insisted on continuing on despite injuries.

We were there until 5.30am and left only after the few DNF runners that were being gathered at CP7 were picked-up and a sweeper car drove to CP6 to check on whether there were any more runners still running from CP6 to CP7.

Hubby drove slowly past runners along the route and we tried to scan every runners, just in case someone needed help. Saw a lady friend who was doing the 50K, running strong towards CP9 and we waited for her there to cheer her up (maybe it just annoyed her and slowed her down. I dunno. hahaha)

Saw more familiar faces (or rather, their backside) when we continued our drive back to the finish line. I dunno they noticed me yelling "Go Go Go" as we passed them by. Yell saja la...Hahaha

Don't think Chief Jamie and Cap'n Skechers noticed us passed them too. Either they were too focused on finishing or too zombified already. Heh heh

We got to the Start/Finish spot at around 6.30am. Had thought of waiting and cheering for runners who would be arriving to the finish line but as luck would have it, I got tummy cramps. Really bad one that made me not really keen to move at all. Ugh. Why does it have to come today and at that time???

So after 30minutes, I told hubby I rather be at home instead of being uncomfortable and in pain sitting in the car, at the Start/Finish line.

Friends, sorry we couldn't cheer for you. You guys and gals rocked Titi 50/100K Ultra Marathon! Big congratulations to everyone!

I learn a lot from my experience today. I met a lot of awesome people today. A lot of gracious runners. 

I learn that an ultra marathon is not something one decide to join on a whim or because someone you know run one. It's about knowing your limit, pushing it and having the commitment to train for it. Would I try and do it? Maybe. But I definitely would not want to run an ultra marathon because it's the next big craze in running. That I learn today.

50K is not "just add another 8K" to a full marathon. A 100K is not a walk in the park. My deepest awe to all who attempted this.

To the organiser, to the crews, to the volunteers and especially to the runners, thank you for the experience. 

Again, to those who ran : CONGRATULATIONS!

Friday, 14 February 2014

Friday, The Fourteenth Of February

On one fine afternoon

Her : “Aren’t you shaving that?” looking critically at the guy sitting next to her
Him : “Why should I?”
Her : “Because I asked you to?”
Him : “Like I said, why should I?”
Her : “ Because I’m cute. I’m so cute that you married me.”
Him : “Hmph, I was suckered into marriage”

The son who was nearby, scowled at the two adults and grumbled : “The way
you two talk, I don’t think you two are meant for each other.”

Aaaahhh yes… After 18 Valentine’s Day together, that is. HAHAHA

Happy Valentine’s Day to those who are celebrating it.

For those who don’t. chill. ^^

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Appreciating Nature

Remember my previous post on our stroll in TamanWetland? Taman Wetlands is divided into two  components. 
1. Taman Wetland Putrajaya 
2. Lake Recreational Centre

Among the attractions in Taman Wetland are the look-out tower, flamingo pond and the Nature Intrepretive Centre. After almost an hour of walking under the hot sun last Sunday, we thought we could do with a bit of air-conditioning and upon asking, we were told that entrance to the centre was FREE!

Located in Taman Wetland, Putrajaya, this Nature Intrepretive Centre (NIC) is a mini showcase of what the wetland offers to us in our environment. 

In Taman Wetland's case, it is to show why the wetlands is important and how it functions and its benefits. Bla bla bla
No entrance fee (I think there used to be but got waived now... maybe due to lack of visitors?) but must register first, yeah.
We entered and was greeted with this. Three floors for us to explore and we started our "journey" from the Ground floor then to Lower Ground and finally up to the first floor.

I guess due to dismal visitor count(?) some exhibits like the 240-degree cineplex was not available.

Place was still nicely maintained and since we were the only visitor that Sunday, we even got our own personal security guard following our every move! *priceless* No, he wasn't being too obvious about it and we understand he was just doing his job.
This is fun!

It's one of those 3D Aqua graphic display. This particular display got flowers sprouting up when Son walked around on the lighted area. Flowers blossoming at his every step. Cool, eh?

There was another that showed fishes swimming about too. Kids would definitely love this.
 
Some freshwater fishes in aquariums. These are a few of fish species that were released into Putrajaya Lake. That's why fishing is allowed at the Taman Wetland Water Recreational Centre (the one where the boat house is located). For a fee, of course.

Hey! There are Kelah in the lake! Kelah wor... Ikan Sempam also got. Ikan Baung too. Cannot remember what else.
Interactive showcase of other wetlands.
Map of Wetland Cell and Putrajaya.
 
This is at the Lower Ground area. Dark and creepy. Rightly so. It features the underground level of the eco-system.  Saw ada groundhog (tikus mondok, right?), lotsa earthworms and tree roots on the 3D corridor walk. Very realistic!

Not a lot of stuff here since the cineplex has nothing so we took the lift to the first floor.
There's a resource centre available up on the first floor. Books to read. Computers to use.  

Then there is this nice hanging sculpture in the middle too.

Nice area to chill out and take a break for parents while letting the kids let off steam a bit.
We got interested in this.

Adjust adjust the square paper to a correct spot until animals get shown on the screen. Dunno why it was so fun but it was!
Got nice mural to see too. And take silly photos at. Hehehe

Despite its rather small size, the centre was fun and informative for us. So much so that we were in it for almost an hour.

If you go to Taman Wetland, maybe you can make NIC a stop. At least for some air-con and learn a bot about our wetland while you're in there. Win-win. :-)

Sunday, 9 February 2014

A Stroll In Taman Wetland

First of all, congrats to all who participated in the weekend's activities; be it XTerra Teaser Event, TNF Thai 50km/100km Ultra Marathon or even the Konvoi Berbasikal Hari Wilayah Persekutuan in Putrajaya. :-)

For us, we were not happening enough so we didn't participate in any events. Hah Hah

Saturday evening.

Hubby asked "what's your mileage planned for tomorrow?"
Wifey : "No mileage. I'm reserving Sunday to walk with you, remember?"

And so we did. The family had a stroll and a picnic, sorta. ^^

This week, we chose an easier route to tackle. Just a stroll with no planned mileage somewhere in Putrajaya.

We parked our car at Taman Botani and walked to Taman Wetland. Taman Botani to the Boat House of Taman Wetland got us around 2K. Plenty of cyclists here. Adults and kids. So much different from a few years before when we would rarely see another visitor there.
From Taman Wetland's Boat House, we could use the bridge nearby to get to the other side of Taman Wetland but we chose to pass through the tunnel under the bridge and walked on this gravel path.
Would've missed this view if we walked on the bridge. Of course, choosing the gravel path meant we added an extra 1K to our route.
The path connecting both sides of Taman Wetland, enabling one to walk across the lake.
And we arrived to this area. 

We continued our walk on the gravel path along the lakeside. We only started our walk at 9.00am and it was getting hotter as the morning progressed. Plenty of fluid taken (we were prepared with two bottles of isotonic, one bottle of Ribena and one botter of mineral water; apart from food). There were shady paths that helped ease the heat.
The boy, despite being tired and hot (and a tad grumpy occasionally) played and goofed around while enjoying the scenery.

Next time, please follow Mummy's example and wear a hat/cap...
Plenty of stuff to learn too, during the walk. Do stop and read! ^^
Mountain bikers aplenty here. Some are nice and friendly.
We walked about 6K and reached to this intersection and decided to turn back. One can continue to walk on the gravel path as it continues onwards but we're reserving that long walk/jog later, when we'll start at an earlier time and without son. There are many "rough" paths that we can try. *fun* 

Zaini opined that we could get 20K+ mileage on the Taman Wetland path, just following the MTB trail. Would've nice to train running there to get used to an un-surfaced rroad. It's a relatively flat route so it's perfect for a newbie like me.
After the intersection, we chose to walk on the tarred road instead of the lakeside gravel path. Murder on the body! It was shadeless and boring! Hot! Hot! Hot!
We got to an area nearby the flamingos pond and had our picnic there. Nasi lemak! There are plenty of wakafs, tables and benches in Taman Wetland for anyone especially those coming with the family to relax there.
Lepak for our Nasi Lemak break for twenty minutes and then we continued our walk until we reached the Nature Interpretive Centre.

We decided to enter to enjoy the air-conditioning (heh heh) but the exhibits there were kinda nice and we ended up looking and trying stuff at the centre for almost an hour! I'll make a post about the Nature Interpretive Centre (NIC) or Pusat Penghayatan Alam, Taman Wetland later. 

Oh, by the way; entrance is free.
Heading back, we decided to use the shortcut and walk on the bridge to get to the other side to reach Taman Botani. The boy was happy to know we were almost finished. Can't blame him. ;)
Back to Taman Botani! Yeay!!!

We took almost 3 hours to finish a 10.50km walk. 20min to eat brunch. About an hour at the Nature Interpretive Centre.

Good bonding time with the family.

Next time, we'll have another family bonding time helping out at Titi 100K/50K. See you there, if you're running in it!

A map and summary of today's stroll

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