Saturday, November 29, 2008

What's happening??

The last week has made me wonder what is happening to this world??
First, I read from MamaPumpkin's blog that her Muslim cousin was told by her teacher that "satan will shit on her head if she does not wear her tudung"
Then, I read in the papers that Yoga is banned to Malaysian Muslims....
And that conservatism is on the rise....
Then the incidents in Mumbai. understand a little more, I've bought two books today (TIMES bookshop had an opening discount of 20%) ..."Encyclopedia of Religions" (actually, this is geared towards kids. Figured it will be easier for me to read. :-D ) and "Inside Islam".

Let's see if I am enlightened...but as I am currently a slow reader...don't know when I will complete these two books. 

No Tree This Year

H asked me to put our  Xmas Tree  up two weeks ago, i.e. when we had the dinner party.  
Thought hard about it, and decided that the Xmas Tree will not go up this year. 
No point.
Since we won't really be around to 'enjoy' looking at our lovely tree. Don't wanna come back in early January 2009 ...and first thing I do is DISMANTLE the tree. 
Yes. Usually, I end up to be the one bringing the tree down....with the maid's help, of course. 


Got four laptoppers from the ANZA Bazaar last Tuesday. Don't know why...but they had a lot of batik ones, and some stripes. Not so many of the patterned or floral ones. Figured that I should just stick to the stripey ones. 

As I've got to lug three laptoppers DownUnder, I need to know which one I should bring back to KL. The black stripey one would be for TK since it's the most macho one. Don't think he wants the other three. :-)

I was thinking of the whimsical lamp one for the HOT shot advertising exec from London, ...the blue one for the preggie one and the orange stripey one for the bride. 

What say you??? If everyone agreeable, I will bring the blue stripey one to KL...and the rest to Melbourne....unless the bride wants me to bring hers to KL. 

Oh yah...since we are NOT doing the Xmas pressie thingy; consider these your advance BIRTHDAY pressies. 
(And TK - consider this as your wedding pressent!! Hahhahahaha)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

TAG - 8 Random Things About Me

Got this tag from Slavemom; and thought that I should get to work ASAP. :-)

1. I like to do arts and crafts stuff....but would not really consider myself as an artsy person. I don't know how to appreciate Picasso nor Gaudi's masterpieces. 

2. Am currently doing this tag at the front desk of the Australian New Zealand Association... Why? Volunteered to man the Front Desk for two days. Was actually referred as "the receptionist" by one of the drivers. Mmmm.... 

3. I am a lazy, procrastinator. Need I elaborate?

4. I absolutely love to stay at home.  Have been yearning to stay PUT at home without having to leave the front door for the last two weeks...but to no avail. :-( 

5. I still feel like I am 18-22 years old (Sapp-patt-yia-yee)....though everyone has told me to add 20 to those years!.. Hahahah

6. I thought that I had pretty good fashion sense. But has been told by H that my taste, my clothes, my music, my dance moves are all from the eighties. BLEAH.

7. I sometimes have pretty bad emotional swings.... I could be happy one minute, and the next, feeling the blues. Could it be hormonal? I donno... But sure does feel like a YOYO...going up and down. Up and down. 

8. I am still seeking more fulfilling things to do...but being the lazy bum that I is really quite difficult to REALLY start something. How like that?

Not tagging anyone in particular. However, please feel free to do this TAG okie?

Flight back home from the States

Thought I should finish all my posts of our USA trip before I fly off to Melbourne in less than 2 weeks time. 

From my previous post, I wrote about our AA flight from JFK to SFO was delayed. Only found that out when we were at the airport, after checking-in via the auto-machines. Had a shock to see that the boarding time was 3 hours later than our original departure time. This delayed departure would mean that our arrival in SFO would be very very close to our departure flight from SFO to SIN

So..from NO need to queue at the auto-machines, to a LOOOOOOONG queue of the check-in counters. We tried to get an earlier flight to SFO
Not possible. 
We tried to have our bags directly transferred from the AA flight to our SQ flight at SFO
Not possible.
H then called SQ to inform them of our impending LATE arrival at SFO.
We were told to notify the AA ground staff on arrival at SFO. And I did that but was rudely brushed aside by the big fat AA ground staff...telling me that I COULD catch my flight. (H had gone ahead to try to retrieve our bags from the carousel and to check-in at SQ counters).
Well, we MISSED our flight from SFO to SIN, and had to stay one night at San Fransisco. out of our own pocket. Supposed to get AA to pay for the one it was their fault.  But we couldn't find any AA staff in the airport at that hour (it was almost 1 am), and we were out on the concourse rather than the terminal. *sigh*

Anyways, we manage to get seats on the next SQ flight out, i.e. the 12.40 pm flight (19 Oct) via Seoul. The SQ staff recommend that we stay over at the Hyatt. H and I proceeded out to the Free Hotel Shuttle rank.... I think there were about 3 or 4 different shuttles to other hotels, and the one to Hyatt was still no where to be seen. Was gonna just stay in the other hotels but they were either full or more expensive than the Hyatt. Then another shuttle came. Again. Not Hyatt's. At this ungodly hour, there were no more passengers. This particular Chinese driver said "if you give me tip, I take you to Hyatt".  
Of course, we took up his offer. 
We had to give the drivers tips regardless....
As he was driving a COMPETITOR hotel's shuttle, he had to drop us out on the main road rather than OUT in FRONT of The Hyatt. :-)
Check-in was seamless. Had a hot shower, and then zzzzzz.
When we woke up, we headed straight to the Airport. Had breakfast in the lounge...FREE ma. What for pay extra to eat the hotel's breakfast?? hahahahhaha

Then I remembered KC. The friend that I didn't manage to meet while I was in San he was in Boston then. I recalled that he said that he would be on the afternoon flight to Singapore on the 19th. So...I went up to the attendant and check to see if they have this passenger on their list. And lo and behold...she said "he has just checked in five minutes ago". Within ten minutes, he walked into the lounge. 
It was GOOD catching up in that hour or so.... 
No. Not in the plane...He was in the FRONT of the plane, and we were waaaaaaaaay back in the plane. Hahahah.

Luckily, the flight from San Fransisco to Seoul was NOT full. Both H and I managed to have three seats each. ...Our own SLEEPER BEDs. Economy-style. :-)

On arrival at Seoul, we did meet up with my friend again. 
The flight from Seoul to Singapore was really really full. And I mean 100% full. So no choice but to get squashed up in our little seat. But at least this leg is not that long. By the time we arrived in Singapore and catch a taxi to sister's place, it was like 2 AM already!!!

The next morning, we had breakfast as one of the nearby foodcourts in a market, and then dad (Yup. Dad was in Singapore then...helping sis with babysitting and cooking) drove us to the airport for our flight home.

All and all. H and I had a good trip to the USA. 



Tuesday, November 25, 2008

General Updates - 25 November 2008

"Sick" Boy
As I mentioned in my previous post, I decided to keep S2 at home on Thursday. Took him to the clinic to have the nebulizer again. As we were leaving, I saw S2's classmate and his mom walked through the door. She had just picked him up from school. The reason? 
He fell and knocked his head on the concrete ground, and had started to vomit. 
Anyway, she texted me later to see if we could get together for lunch the next day, that is, if her son is okay after the CT scan and all.
All is well at the doctors, ...and guess what?
We met up at the local pizza joint for lunch on Friday, and the two "SICK" boys donned on aprons and chef's hat and went to the kitchen to make their own pizzas, whilst the mommies chit-chatted. They were certainly having a ball...then my friend told her son "you better not tell your teacher that you had lunch with S2 on Friday"....YUP. Two "SICK" boys who didn't go to school, but could have a play date????
Actually, the teacher is just overly-cautious.

Boys' Sleepover
S1 had two of his friends over on Saturday for a sleepover. S2 supposed to have a friend sleepover too, but because he was still coughing, I thought it wasn't such a good idea for him to be sharing an enclosed space with his friend. So his friend stayed till about 6 pm. 
Actually, am not so keen to have sleepovers at my house, but I reckoned that I should do it as this way, I get to know my boys' friends and their families too. 
One of S1's friends, S was sent by the driver. The mom did not come...I don't think that I have really met her. And I thought it odd to NOT come and meet the people that your son is going to spend the night with. I could be a child-trafficker or worse! The other moms did come and have a short chat and coffee. 
And when it was dinner time, this same boy S commented "It's about time!" ....I thought that was kinda rude to be making such remarks at people's house. I commented to H that this boy must be one of those spoilt RICH local kids that have like TEN maids or what-nots in the house!! 

Brunch Again!
Didn't want to go to the Four Seasons Sunday Brunch. I wanted to just stay at home and ROT on the couch, and GROW worms!!! But H had already made arrangements with his friend and family. So reluctantly had to go... 
Didn't eat that much. I drank more. 
NO. NO. Don't be mistaken...I had the non-alcoholic brunch. Just that I drank alot of fruit juices.  The others DID DRINK alot!!! And I mean ALOT!!!
Boys? Didn't really eat...except for the dips at the chocolate fountain. 
Luckily they didn't charge for the kids. 

Roast Pork
Tried out dad's Roast Pork recipe....had to say that it was pretty good. Will certainly make it again. Errr...forgot to take photo lah.

Finished my Balinese Dancers already...

Working on another new painting...a Buddha Statue. Waaaaah. This one is very very hard! The light graduations all soooooo difficult. Will show you when I'm done.

Xmas Bazaar
Went to a Xmas Bazaar this morning...specifically to buy the four Laptoppers requested. Will post pictures next day as they are still in the car....

Okay lah. Later...abit lazy.

Good Deal or Not?

S2 gave me a little catalogue of book titles from his school's book club this morning. I had a quick scan over the titles and thought that there were some really good deals. For example, 20 books of the "Horrible Science" series for less than GBP 20/-.  However, I discovered a separate list of pricing in the local currency. A quick calculation revealed that the school had not used the current exchange rates. Using the same example as above, I would have thought it would work out to be less than USD 35/-. Instead, the list price was almost USD 50. I certainly would not be buying from the school's book club!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Next Assignment

H has repeatedly said that we would stay in this country for another year. Thereafter, we will all ship out to a new location. One possible place that he has mentioned is the US. From what I gather, the company's office is in Dallas. And I can't help but wonder if I should actually go back to work, as boys would be older and more independent by then. As for job prospects, I'm sure there are plenty of jobs in Dallas for a Chemical Engineer. The only problem is whether I could revert to a working-mother role after so many years.....

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Not Again!!!!!

This morning......happily hopped into the car at about 10.05 AM.
My destination was to be the Driving Range. Made appointment to meet my friend at 10.20 am to hit some balls, and then lunch. Was even planning what to eat during lunch. Wanted to have Duck King's Malaysian Curry Mee. Yum Yum. Couldn't wait till lunch.

Just as I was about to put my socks on, my mobile phone rang."Mrs. NomadicMom? This is Mr. M, S2's teacher....blah blah blah blah"...with this single 2-minute call, I had to make a U-turn and head towards school AGAIN. I feel like I have gone to school like a 1001 times to pick S2 up in the last week already!!!  (read here and here)
Yes. S2 did have a 'funny' and coarse voice this morning when I put him on the bus. Abit of cough but not of such a concern that he's got to stay at home. His teacher said "keep him at home tomorrow unless he shows significant improvement". 
His teacher must think that I am some sh!tty mommy that sends her son off to school despite of his illness.
Seriously, I would send him to school at his current condition....BUT I am NOT going to. 
NOT because he is NOT up to it...but MORE of me being NOT up to another ride out to school to pick him up AGAIN.
Basically, it takes about 40 minutes each way. So this morning, I head out to school at 10.10 am, picked S2 up and only managed to reach the clinic (which is about 600 m from our house) at about 11.35 am. H said to just bring him to the clinic...
Anyway, he does need the nebulizer and have a blocked nose. His throat is alright. Doctor said "yes, he can go to school...". But I'm not sending S2 to school....fai-see lah

All this hopping off to school, then to clinic, and then off to quick lunch, and back to clinic again took like 4 1/2 hours!! By the time we got home at 2.30 pm, I was really tired. More tired than a game of tennis or an hour in the gym. I scared I be the one going to be 'sick'! 
So FORCED S2 to have a nap with me. 
Last week when he was home from school, I FORCED him to nap, and he couldn't and then I said "just rest then"...and he kept looking at the clock and counting down the one hour rest time that I set. 
Luckily he did nap today...and so did I.

Oh my 'sick' fella... I asked him "do you want porridge for lunch at home, or eat out?"
Waaaa...faster than anything "JAPANESE. Let's go Sushi Tei."
I said too far..
"Sushi Groove"
Still too far..
"How about the one near the Burger King one?"
Well..he was right. There was a Japanese restaurant nearby to Burger King. So we went to Shabu Nobu. That fella had a Unagi HandRoll and a Salmon Set!
When I told H "where got sick? Eat so much",  H was rather he usually judge a 'sick' person as one who has NO appetite. 
Also a 'sick' S2 will NOT continue to TALK so much!

Yes...keeping him at home tomorrow. 
Haven't decided yet whether to send him to school on Friday or not.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Day 8 & 9 - New York City

Day 8, Friday 17th October

Early start of a long day....
H wanted to bring me to his regular breakfast haunt, but on the way to HSBC to withdraw some dosh, we passed-by so many hotdog stall that I just could not resist. Besides, hotdogs from the NYC streets are a MUST, right? After the hotdog already, where can go for breakfast summore?? So didn't go. 

Let me think what we did after breakfast on this day:

1) Went to Rockefella Center
..but did not go to the Top of the Rock as I've already purchased advance tickets for the Empire State Building

2) Walked  along 5th Avenue from 38th Street all the way to Central Park 
I have never walked sooooooo much in my life. Not even when living in London! In NYC, it's walk to everywhere! Walk here. Walk there. Aduh! 

3) Walkabout inside Central Park.
Of course took picture by the lake.... :-D I tourist maaaa

4) Had lunch at The Plaza hotel.
We cannot afford to stay there but must at least go in look-see, and have a meal lah. But I tell you...the lobby also nothing to shout about. But of course, I take photo nevertheless.

5) Went to the Observation Deck on the Empire State Building
...waliow!! The queue was majorly LONG! Even with our advance-purchase tickets, we had to queue to get through security-checks, then queue for the elevators. Only bypass the ticket booth. To bypass all queues, one would have to pay extra $$$ ...think it's extra USD 20 per ticket. Queue. Queue. Queue. 
Of course H was a little ngam-ngam-chamm-chamm lah....saying this should proof that he loves me. Bleahhhh..

6) Did some shopping on 5th Avenue
....Got some discount stuff!!! Three pieces at Ann Taylor for less than USD 27 only leh.

7) Look-See at both Tiffany&Co and Cartier
....Phtui! Some salesperson at Tiffany&Co rolled her eyes and then immediately ignored me! When H was seriously considering buying something, I don't go to her lah.  
Yes. The sor-lou wanted to buy this Elsa Peretti (?) bracelet which had a few small (and I mean small!! Combine all the diamonds, still smaller than my 'pei-see' lah) which costs like USD 6K over. GILA. I could get tennis bracelets for this price in Malaysia. Sure I don't want lah. No need Tiffany&Co one, okay!
The guy over at Cartier was much nicer....Again, I thought really NOT worth it.
I know. I know... Laundryamah is going to say that I am stupid..."lou koong oi mai pei lei, just take lah!"

8) Watched Mamma Mia on Broadway...
Of course must watch the musical production on Broadway!! We had pretty good seats, which we pre-booked waaaaaay in advance. Have to say that it was FABULOUS
I was singing along, and H had to nudge me a couple of times to STOP SINGING. Hahhahahahah. The best part was the end, when the audience could join in with the singing and dancing. Waaa...d@mn SHIOK!....Errr...I know you all sure say SIOW...but I did tear-up during the musical. Hehhehe
And then when I came back home, I watch the MOVIE version and I tear-up too. Then H asked "did you also cry at the Musical?" and of course he said SIOW!

9) Had Dinner at Roxy's at Times Square
Portions were huge!!!! So huge that we couldn't eat the famous desserts. What a bummer!

And on Day 9, Saturday 18th November: - 

10) Ferry-Ride to Staten Island
Why?? To view the Statue of Liberty, of course! Cheapskate people don't want to pay $$ to go with the tour to Liberty Island. So took the FREE ferry to Staten Island. H tried to take a photo of me, but the Statue of Liberty was like a toothpick next to my ear! Hahahhaa

11) Visit to Wall Street
Typical Tourist...(didn't want to walk to nearby Ground Zero. Too lazy liow)

12) A short visit to Union Square
They have the weekend Farmer's Market there...would have loved to buy some of the produce!

13) Visited  Macy's  flagship store.
No lah...didn't buy anything here.

Then it was time to go back to our hotel, pick up our bags and head for JFK for our flight back to San Fransisco. On reaching the airport, had a SHOCK that our AA flight had been delayed for 3 hours. Couldn't get an earlier flight...nor could they check -in our flights all the way to Singapore. Thus, on reaching  San Fransisco, we would have to retrieve our bags and rush to the SQ counter to check-in our bags. Needless to say, we couldn't make it....even after we've informed SQ of our delay. More about this in the next post.

Some photos...

Saks, Rockefella Center, Crysler Building, Grand Central Station, Times Square @ Night
Empire State Building, Some 5th Avenue Churches, Restaurant in The Plaza
Views from Empire State Building
Grand Central Station, Roxy's 
Wall Street, Ferry to Staten Island, Statue of Liberty, Subway
Macy's, Pretty Produce @ Union Square, Wall Street
Roxy's Desserts...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Dinner Party...

Was just writing about diet pills in my last post...and here I am talking about food??

We invited two families over for dinner last night. The kids came earlier at 3 pm for games and a swim, whereas the grown-ups came later in the evening. 

This is what the adults had....
Salmon & Cream Cheese Vol-au-Vents
Fried Aubergine & Cheese Mini-Patties
Pitta Bread and Tzaziki

Cream of Mixed Mushroom

Roast Whole Leg of Lamb
Roast Potatoes
Mixed Salad

Banoffee Pie

And Lots of Wines, Bubbly and Beer!!!

The Salmon & Cream Cheese Vol-au-Vent was really easy as I bought the ready-made pastry cases. All I had to do was fill them with cream cheese and top with slices of smoked salmon. Would be nice if I had some dill for decoration....but I certainly wasn't going to buy a whole big bunch for a few sprigs. This is the only photo I have from the list of foods....taken just this morning as they are the leftovers. 

For the Fried Aubergine & Cheese Patties, I made the mixture much earlier in the day from roasted chopped aubergines, feta cheese, parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, egg and chopped parsley. My maid then shaped, coated with flour and fried them when required. ....Yes. These are very fattening!!!

The Tzaziki was as per H's birthday....

I used three different types of mushroom for the soup - Button, Portobello and Shiitake. Roasted them first, then pan-fried them with some butter and onions; before adding them to the chicken stock; and then finally blended the soup. I wanted to add some cream as the final touch...but realised I had forgotten to buy the cream. Oh well.... a much healthier soup, I supposed. 

Couldn't find a smaller lamb leg, so ended up with a Leg of Lamb that can feed 8 people (Kiddies had spaghetti bolognese and the mini-patties). Roasted the potatoes towards the last hour of lamb-roasting time (total of approx 3 1/2 hours). Sorry no photo as guests were already here. Not so nice to be taking photos in the kitchen while they wait. Cheated with the Mixed Salad. Bought ready-washed and prepared salads from the supermarket. 

Prepared both the Tiramisu and Banoffee pie on Friday. Yes. Two very decadent and sinful desserts! Again, forgot to take picture when they are still whole. The leftovers are too messed-up now to take a photo. :-)

Also baked a batch of cupcakes...thought the kids might want a snack after their swim, plus I wanted to give some to my boys' Mandarin teachers...for patiently tolerating their nonsense in class.

The Odd One Out

Pretty Daisies....

I'm PINK and Sexy!

PINK and Sweet...

Should have taken a photo of my nicely set-up table...Donno why I forgot. Anyway, here is one of the two identical arrangements I had for my dinner table...

WARNING: GROSS description from NOT read on if you can't stomach it.....err also kinda MALU lah.

I actually didn't eat that much. Can't really eat if I'm the one that does the cooking. 
Think that's the problem. 
Didn't eat much but DRINK and DRINK and DRINK!
Had wines, bubbly, kahlua (in my tiramisu) and beer...think the combi was too much.

One family left at about the kids were tired and pestering to go home. The other family, left the kids at home, thus continued on to have more drinks out on the patio till about 1.30 AM.  When I went to bed, I already felt uneasy...and wanted to p%ke but thought to myself "don't...don' sayang" so went to bed very uncomfortably. Sleep was rather disturbing as well, head was spinning all over the place. SHiaks

Must be about 3ish AM in the morning when I beh-tahan. Woke up and went to the toilet in the darkness of the night. Didn't want to blind my eyes, so kept the lights off. Thought I want to be smart....don't want to be too high from the porcelain throne (in case projectile not accurate and I would have to clean-up the sides) so squat to p%ke. Thought closer, less mess.
That was definitely a DUMB-@SS move!
The force of my stomach muscles were sooooo GREAT that while I p%ke, I pee-ed as well! 
Summore my p%ke was not sekali-gus. I could feel my stomach going like spasms like that...and with each wretched pull of my stomach muscles, a projectile of yucky wine and whatever alcohol products propelled out. The force of the projectile was so great that I absolutely could NOT control my bladder muscles. 
Literally, I was p#king and pee-ing simultaneously!!
Bleah......blardy bladder was blardy FULL to the max summore!
What to do???
Turn on the bl@rdy lights to start cleaning myself and the floor lah!!!!!
Maid gone off this morning summore...

Geezzz... and woke up this morning with a bl@rdy hang-over! 
Never felt so sh!tty ever. Made myself a HOT bowl of soupy chicken maggi mee, took a panadol and went back to bed. H nudged me at about 11.30 AM; to tell me that he's bringing the boys out to have lunch and to buy DVDs....leaving me to continue to zzzzzzz. 

The moment they came home, S1 asked if I was better.....heheheheheheh... 

NO more drinking like a fish!! Or at least I should fill my stomachs with some foods first....

BTW, did I mention that my dinner party was a success? :-)

To Binge or Not to Binge?

Okay. I have to admit that I somewhat borrowed my post title from Shakespeares' Hamlet. But it is really the right question to ask ..."to binge or not to binge" when one is at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

- Do you binge and then starve for a few days after?
- Or perhaps starve a few days, and then binge?
- Or pop a couple of diet pills to suppress your voracious appetite?
- Binge but not forgetting to take some fat-burner pills 30 minutes prior?
- Or would you be sensible enough to eat just enough?

So what type are you?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Got sent back again!

Remember my post about S2 being sent home from school on Tuesday and Wednesday??

Well, I did insist that he go to school on Thursday. As usual, sent him off onto the bus at 6.45 pm. As about 9.30 PM, I got a call from his school again.
This time, it was the Head Nurse. 
I knew her her son used to be in S2's class. We went on chatting about S2's to why he only coughs badly in class and NOT in the nurse's station nor at home. She then asked if S2 is unhappy about his class; and stressed that at his age, he may have difficulty voicing-out. 
Anyways, she told me to collect him from school as the teachers were rather concerned about his BAD cough....and that he may be coming down with a flu. So it's better to let him stay at home to rest. YES. Stay at home on Friday too! I trot to school again. 
As I entered the Nurse's station; I saw S2 laughing and chatting with a fellow classmate. She's also been sent to the Nurse's station.
I asked them if it was a PLOY to get off-school. Heee heee...

After picking up S2, I decided to drop by at Carrefour (since I have a dinner party planned for Saturday...and sending S2 home first would be too time-consuming). The whole time we were there, NOT a single cough out of S2. And the moment I asked "where got sick?", he would cough so hard as if he was gonna belch!

I did take him to see an Allergy Specialist later that day....S2 IS allergic to something which I donno what. That something triggers his asthma. Some allergens will be quite mild, and others will put him in a state of wheeziness. So..want to check what exactly he's allergic too. After the results are out, I want to bring him to the Bio2000 (sci-fi???) place that uses electromagnetic waves to check for allergies as a confirmation....
As I had given S2 Actifed for his cough, the allergy test could not be conducted. Had to wait for a week for the medication to wear off.  The specialist did prescribe S2 with an additional inhaler ...which had to be used even if there is NO attack. I read the inhaler insert and it did say that it should be continually used even if there is no symptoms of wheeziness. 

So...will see how this goes...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Belated Post - Birthday Gifts

This post should have been completed waaaaaaaaaaay back to September. 
Anyway, better late than never lah.

Birthday dinner was with H and both the boys over at Portovenere (Italian restaurant) at Ritz-Carlton. Can't remember what I ordered exactly...but it was something PORKY. :-) 
After the bill was settled, the wait staff brought a small tiramisu cake with singular candle...and proceeded to sing the birthday song. Lucky the restaurant wasn't full...otherwise would be quite malu (embarassing)! Overall, the meal was pretty good. (S2 has requested that we have his birthday dinner here the next time)

When we got home...still had two cakes to blow. Both of the cakes were gifts.

Bakerzin's Strawberry ShortCake from Sis from SIN
(The delivery guy must be driving the cake was partly damaged. I complained to him and he offered to replace it. But I just accepted it as it is....Taste still GOOD lah)

The Harvest's Rich Chocolate Cake from a Local Friend
(Gave a BIG chunk to the 3/4 of the cake!)

Gucci Moon Bag
(This was my birthday present from H.....Errr. Actually, I chose it myself, and he paid for it. Got this LARGE bag for our US trip. Have to say very GOOD for travelling. Can put all sorts of, wallet, lip-gloss, H's wallet, brochures, cardigan, medicine pouch, mints etc.... I look pretty good carrying it too!!!!! Heeeeheeee)

What am I to do?

....with S2 that is.

Let me start at the Monday, 10th Nov. 6.
Time is 6.20 AM.
S2 announced that he 'lau-sai'. I told him to go wash up, change and wait for the school bus. Then proceeded to get him some medicine.
When to check on him. He was still sitting on the throne. I had a peek. Not much of a 'lau-sai'. He did stain on his underwear a little bit. Told him again to wash, change into new school shorts. 
S2 immediately asked "what if I lau-sai in school again?".
I was very skeptical of this boy....remember the time that I was leaving on a flight? 
Read here
Mom did pick him up from school but she said "where got lau-sai? Summore want to follow me out and want to eat KFC!".
So I said "Eh. I'm not grandma. I'm not going to laugh over it if you make me go all the way to school to pick you up!". 
S2 reluctantly boarded the bus to school on Monday. 

Then there's Tuesday, 11th Nov. He boarded the bus for school at 6.45 AM. 
At 9.00 AM, I got a call from the school nurse ...informing me to come collect S2 from school as he was coughing and wheezing badly. I was due to attend a Coffee Morning/ Lunch at a friend's house. Made apple crumble and vanilla custard for dessert at the do. 
BUT I had to go to school right?
So off I went to school to pick S2. Only reached home about 10.30 AM. 
With a "supposedly" sick kid. I told my friend that I had to cancel and got my driver to send the dessert over without me. :-(
Was a sick kid sleeping and resting?
Noooooooo. Insisted to go on the computer and did all sorts of nonsense. Not only that, had to bombard me with non-stop questions.
 *sigh* Why can't they keep him in school? At least give me some hours of peace and quiet.
On top of that, he wasn't coughing much at home too.

And today, Wednesday 12 Nov...
He was perfectly okay when I put him on the morning school bus. 
Again...I got a call from the nurse at about 9.00 AM.
This time, I asked if she could keep him in the Nurse' Station for observation, and I would call later to check on him.
I did call her about 10.30 AM. She said he was fine, and since it was break time, that fella has gone out to play with his pals... 
I told her to talk to his teacher and see if he could stay in class rather than being sent home....blah blah blah.
Not long later, his class teacher called. I'm sure he must think that I am a BAD mommy. 
(see my previous post on how he might think I am a SLACKER mommy...). He said he'll keep Ethan in the class for the time being, but would send him home if need be. And then went on about how he should rest at home etc etc etc. Told him that he was perfectly ALRIGHT when he is at home. Thus it's really difficult to decide if it was really necessary to keep him at home. 
And guess what?
S2 turned up at the doorstep at about 1 PM. Teacher actually sent him home on an earlier school bus!
Don't want to pick him up ...He also can find his way home! 
Again...not much coughing at home. When you ask him "where got cough?"
He'll go on a 'forced cough' streak! 
Went on the computer like forever...Of course when S1 came home, he was pretty upset that S2 got to SKIVE from school AGAIN!!

So...What am I to do?
Send S2 to school tomorrow or NOT???

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Day 7 - New York & New Jersey

We arrived at JFK New York early in the morning of Thursday, 16th Oct at 6.20 AM.
(We took the RED-eye out from Las Vegas the night before)
Our flight, which was on Delta was MOST uncomfortable. Our seats could NOT recline whatsoever. Not even a wee-bit.
As a result, H was wide-awake throughout the flight. Certainly RED-eyed indeed!!!!
Me? I did catch about forty-winks despite the discomfort.

First thing that we did was to proceed to Budget to pick up our rental car....or should I say van?
It was a 7-seater with ample boot space.
When H saw it, he asked " intend to buy alot of things is it??". Actually, this HUGE vehicle was the cheapest on the list. Even cheaper than those compact economy ones. And cheaper by quite alot too, if I might add. Booked it through I have to say that this online site is quite good (NO. I am not doing a paid post). It allows you to see a list of offerings from major rental car companies in your selected pick-up location and hire-dates. You simply pick and choose from the list. 

Why do we need a car in New York City?
Well.....that's because we are going OUT of NYC . 
To be more precise, we are heading for....... Woodbury Common Factory Outlets!
This place is definitely a  MUST-GO for shopaholics! 
Even NON-shopaholics would find loads of goodies here. 

We did get a Garmin GPS from Budget. But somehow, this particular unit that we got was a bit 'fann-ying-chee-tun' (slow reaction) and didn't give the turn-right command on time. And because of that, we missed a turn and had to re-route through a residential area. H was a bit p%ssed with the detour. I on the other hand, thought it was a good detour. Got to see the RICH New Jersey FALL colours of REDS, BROWNS, ORANGE, YELLOWS... and houses all decked out in their Halloween decor. 
Didn't know why I didn't take any photos of this picturesque site.

On reaching Woodbury, it was still waaaaaaaay too early. Shops were still closed and H was zombiefied from non-sleep the night before. 
So what do two 'sor-lous' (silly man) do?
We parked, reclined our seats and slept in the car!
Think we slept about an hour. By then, shops were starting to open....and we were both REFRESHED and ready to go SHOPPING!
What did I buy in this particular outlet? Cannot really remember totally...but I remember another pair of Cole Haan's, a Cole Haan wallet for MIL, a Coach wallet for mom, my Wedgewood India-design coffee pot, 2 x Calvin Klein tops (which costs USD 5/- each!!!) and donno what. Been to so many factory outlets that I donno what I bought from where... will post all purchases (except the wallets...given to mom and MIL already) in a separate post.

Some were having like BIG BIG sales with clothes all over that I donno how to look nor buy. Loads of Emporio Armani stuff starting from USD 10/- but like I said, donno how to rummage. Didn't buy anything from Tods nor Bottega. Didn't have anything I like. :-(
There were other brands like Prada, Gucci, CD, Crate and Barrel, etc etc. The thing that I wanted to buy very much was an Espresso Machine...but H said that it would be 'ma-fann' (troublesome) as the voltage is different. 

Anyways, we left Woodbury (which is in NY state) in the afternoon and headed back to NYC.....passing through New Jersey again. This time, I did take some photos...but as we were on the highway all the way, couldn't get better pictures of the beautiful foliage.

RED, ORANGE, Woodbury's Carpark

FALL Colours from the Highway

En-Route back to NYC

On arrival in NYC, we checked into our hotel, Shelburne Murray Hill on 37th E/ Lexington and left our baggage with the concierge....then immediately headed out to return our rental car on 43rd Street East. The walk back to the hotel was quite leisurely.  The hotel is part of a boutique hotel chain. Rooms were quite nice as they were newly-refurbished with LCD TV and Aveda Toiletries. Though this room is slightly bigger than the one in San Fransisco, the price is like DOUBLED. Room rates in NYC is crazily high! ...that's why we took the RED-eye over so that we can at least save one night's room rate!
Initially, H asked if I wanted to stay at The Plaza. I checked the rates and it was at an exorbitant price of over USD 900! GILA lah. I could buy sooooooooooooooooooo many things with that money man!

Had a shower and abit of a rest before heading out towards Grand Central Station (42nd E/Lexington) and Times Square. We had dinner at Red Lobster ...*BURP*

Weird and Silly!

I had the weirdest of weird dreams last night!!

First, I dreamt that this guy (one of H's friend) jilted me for my schoolmate from secondary school...and married her. Of course I was devastated!!! 

And then suddenly, my dream continued with 'Mr. Big' as the leading man.
Do I hear you say "Mr. Big who?"
Remember 'Mr. Big' from 'Sex and the City'???
Well...that's him.

Story or should I say dream started off with him drifting back to into my life after many years of non-contact....we broke-up maaaa... (hahahhahah..funny, I know. I woke up laughing). 
When I saw him, I heart ached for him. Yearning for his hugs and kisses (Ehh....the feelings in my dreams d@mn real okay!!!)

Anyway, we were somewhat working together...and he was as his usual flirty-self.
Of course I tried to distance myself away from him, and at the same time being pulled by this great force of magnetism. :-)
But I remained strong and avoided him whenever possible. 

I also had constant reminders from my friends on how he HURT me when he jilted me, (ehhh...this is continuation from the first dream...just donno why the leading man can fully-change into a different person one leh??!?!?) how devastated I was; and that I should NEVER EVER let this man into my life again...
Somehow, in between....there was a part that I wanted to return 'the engagement ring' that he gave me years ago. (Blur-blur lah this part)

Aiya...but my heart very 'gian' (yearn?) for this fella, and accepted a lift from him.
But hor...I donno why 'Mr. Big' can speak Cantonese one wor..... very good lah him. Hahhahaha. Really. Whole time in the car, we were speaking Cantonese.
And yes. This 'Mr. Big' is also a RICH guy like in 'Sex and the City'. 
He was going on-and-on about something...and then asked if I wanted to have his baby!

Don't know what happened, and we ended up in an orphanage supervising some kids in their colouring.
Alamak! This time, all of us conversing in Mandarin. 
For those who knows me, you know my Mandarin is the worst of the to converse in Mandarin? And 'Mr. Big' conversing in Mandarin?

I supposed our relationship would have gotten back on-track (and perhaps some hanky-panky too??? heeeeheee) if not for this wretched thing...
Yup. Alarm ringing...... Doo-doo-du-dut. Doo-doo-du-dut (the sound is like that ma...I'm using my Nokia phone as alarm lah).

Time to wake-up. To wake my two school-going monsters. 

Back to Reality....

Guessed I won't know how hanky-panky with this guy works out.....