Out of the usual
Wow... two months of inactivity. This is SO unusual. But the inactivity is just limited to this blog space. Elsewhere, business as usual...:)
Now, where do I resume? What to write? Which story to tell? Since I started off this entry with unusual, maybe I should write on something unusual. Something from two months back.
I was offered to attend a course organized by the faculty, Transformation Course, in Malacca. Mahkota Hotel to be exact. Since hubby was not able to join, I was on my own. And to make it more pitiful, it was our wedding anniversary. :`(
Anyhow, there I was. Alone in a nice hotel room. With a living and kitchen area. And no one to share it with.

The hotel is in the middle of the city. Situated opposite the shopping mall, Mahkota Parade. And yet, I was not able to enjoy the luxury of shopping or window-shopping. The course schedule was packed until the night. And you just wanted to hit the bed once you are back in the room.
Interesting course, I must say. Not just because of the programme line-up. But also the participants. The participants were a mixture of all posts and grades in PPUKM. From lecturers to lab technologists, to nurses, to administrative staff, to drivers etc. I was put in a group in which I was the only lecturer. The group members thought I was someone else. And they could not believe it when they know who I am. Ha ha....
Some of  the pics of the group.

Amongst the activity that we had, one activity was very interesting. We were each given a blank piece of paper and a cellophane tape. We were then arranged in a circle and we had to stick the piece of paper onto the back of the person on our right. And then we had to go round and take turn to write on the paper our first impression of the person. Well, it ain't easy. Because of the large number of participants, I really could not make a fair or accurate impression of most of the participants. Apart from my own small group, I hardly communicate with the rest of the participants. I ended up reading what others had wrote on the paper and I tend to write the same or similar thing. Ha ha... Cheating I know. Tapi sungguh, it was hard. And to make it worse, we had a few minutes of darkness when suddenly the electric went out. Lagi la tak boleh nak buat first impression. Anyhow, these are what the others think of me... :D

We had fun. And I am glad I attended this course. Because I would never have known these people if not for this course. It is very unlikely that our paths will ever cross considering the different careers that we have. So I count my blessings and were really grateful to get to know these 'out of the usual' people. At least one should realize that the world does not revolve around oneself. :)
Varsiti Kita
Masuk Matrikulasi UKM Tahun 1 di Sekolah Muzaffar Syah Melaka, Ayer Keroh, Melaka.

Sambung Matrikulasi UKM di Pusat Matrikulasi Kuala Pilah, Negeri Sembilan.

Bergelar prasiswazah di Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

Menyambung pengajian di peringkat pascasiswazah juga di Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

Mula berkhidmat, masih di Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

Mungkin pencen pun di Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

Semasa di matrikulasi dan bergelar pelajar di UKM, tak pernah perasan atau terkesan dengan lagu UKM, iaitu Varsiti Kita. Bila dah kerja, baru mula nak menghayati lagu ni. Lagu yang sangat sedap sebenarnya, dan lirik yang sangat bermakna. Pelik jugak, kenapa dulu tak pernah nak ambil peduli pasal lagu ni... Mujur sempat juga perasan akan lagu ni sebelum pencen. :)

Komposer : Nazri Ahmad
Penulis Lirik : Muhammad Hj. Salleh 

Lihat kampus ku yang tenang
Damainya alam ciptaan tuhan
Paduan ilmu dan keimanan
Amal dan jerih digabungkan
Lautan ilmu kita harungkan
Sumber ilmuan berkembangan

Inilah varsiti kita
Ditegakkan hasrat rakyat kita
Dari mula untuk semua
Bagai tanda perjuangan kita

Bangun berbakti membina
Memupuk insan jiwa bertakwa
Memimpin manusia semua
Kenal akan adat unggulnya
Membina negara sentiasa
Maju berilmu dan bahagia
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Raya @ Ganu
My youngest brother was engaged on 4th of Syawal recently. To one mek Ganu. So to Terengganu we traveled, on the 3rd of raya. Wakaf Tembesu to be exact. There were 11 cars altogether in the convoy, consisting of my parents, siblings, nieces, nephews, uncle and cousins. It was a very long and tiring journey indeed.

We stayed in a homestay, named Sri Delima Homestay, at Teluk Ketapang, Kuala Terengganu. We left Raub at about 10 in the morning and it was already dark when we reached the homestay. Nice and cosy place. It is actually a large 2-storey bungalow, divided into 4 house units. Each unit has two or three rooms. Almost all rooms have its own bath. Each room with double bed. Each unit has a dining table and living area.One negative thing though, there is no sink at the dining area. So we had to use the sink in the bathrooms to wash our hands during mealtimes.

Some of the pics of the unit.

The next morning, we set out for the engagement ceremony at about 11 am. 

My brother gave a short speech before the trip.

The hantaran.

The ceremony.

My youngest brother is officially engaged. 

And this means, another trip to Terengganu some time next year, InshaAllah.

We headed back to KL after the ceremony. Hubby had to work the next day. It was another long and tiring journey back home. And it was not easy for hubby since he was not feeling very well. That's another story for another time, maybe. He really suffered and swallowed his discomfort and pain during the journey. And for that, I am really grateful and appreciate him more. :D
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Jangan mencuri masa mengaji
Ramadhan, bulan di mana umat Islam berlumba-lumba membuat kebaikan dan amal ibadah. Bulan yang diimarahkan dengan solat terawih dan tadarus.

Bercakap pasal tadarus, teringat masa belajar mengaji suatu ketika dulu. Ada ustazah datang ke office dan tunjuk ajar pembacaan yang betul. Ada dua pengajaran yang sangat terkesan di hati dan masih ingat sampai sekarang. Bukan pasal mad atau dengung atau nun mati atau huruf iqlab atau lain-lain hukum tajwid. Tapi something pasal jaga pernafasan untuk pembacaan yang betul.

Almaklumla, nafas kadang tak berapa panjang. Tak cukup nafas nak abiskan ayat yang panjang. Terpaksa berhenti di tengah-tengah ayat yang bukan designated sebagai tempat wakaf. So bila berhenti tu, kadang-kadang tak sure nak start baca semula kat bahagian mana. So, once, pernah tanya ustazah tu, macam mana nak tau nak mula baca balik kat mana. Ustazah tu kata, haa... kena la tau Bahasa Arab. Aduss... Terkesan sebab masa Form 1-3 belajar Bahasa Arab tapi sangat tidak ambil serius. So hasilnya, sekarang dah banyak lupa. Satu kerugian yang amat besar.

On a different occasion, one of us tanya ustazah, macam mana kalau curi nafas. Ustazah tu jawab dengan soalan. Mencuri dosa ke dak? Berdosa kan? Adusss... Terkesan sebab rasanya memang selalu sangat berlaku bab curi mencuri nafas sebelum tu... 

Jadi, peringatan untuk kita semua, especially diri sendiri. Dalam keghairahan nak khatam Quran semasa Ramadhan, mudah-mudahan pembacaan dilakukan dengan betul dan tiada aksi curi mencuri. :)
The (food) diary of Cik Kiahs
Hemy, Mas and I have been on several food missions previously. Just tak sempat nak update in this blog. So let's take a tour on some of these missions.

We went to SACC mall and had lunch at the Teapot Deli. A small restaurant with nice English deco.

Hemy and Mas boasted of the deliciousness of the chicken pie and I just had to try it. It was very nice.

Hemy and Mas had nasi tomato set (picture is not available) which also came with dessert, a choice between bread pudding and trifle. They chose the bread pudding.Not so appetising by the looks. The taste pun kureng jugak. :)
We shared a slice of red velvet cake. Very delicious.

On another day, Hemy suggested that we should go to a restaurant in Sg Penchala area, Sambal Hijau. And we went one day. The place was very packed during lunch hour. Luckily Hemy arrived early (as usual) and secured a table. The place offers nasi campur and varieties of lauk. Semua nampak sedap. Kalau ikut nafsu, memang haru. So, I settled with this. Ha ha... pergi travel jauh-jauh makan kat Sambal Hijau, ambik lauk cenggini je? Layann... diet la konon...

Before I made the trip to Sambal Hijau, I did my homework on this place..(kiasu or what? nak gi makan pun, buat homework bagai). Anyhow, I visited a few blogs which feature Sambal Hijau and saw that some of them ordered teh o ais laici. Looks appetising, so I ordered one. Nice... Well, teh o ais is one of my favorites, and adding laici is like a bonus.

The restaurant also sells lots of other things like snacks such as rempeyek, desserts such as durian crepe and this bubur sum sum. It was the first time I tried this dessert. Quite nice...

Sambal Hijau is not the place for you to hang out and berlama-lamaan untuk minum-minum and borak-borak. Ramai orang kot tunggu meja. So, after having our lunch, we headed to The Curve and met Mas there.

Later we settled down at Marche. Marche, pronounced as Mar-shay, is a French word for market.

It does applies the market concept.They have various stalls and you choose what you want to eat.

Once you have chosen the dish, they prepared it fresh for you.

We had one of this. Rosti and sausage. The rosti is actually a dish made from potatoes. Quite nice.

MidValley is also one of our destinations. Once, we dined here, Spaghetti Grill.

Hemy ordered this stuffed mushroom dish, as starter. Sedap...

All of us had pasta. Well, dah nama tempat ni Spaghetti Grill, pasta is a must la kan. Could not remember the name of this dish.

Or this dish.

And we topped of with this dessert. Ntah apa ke nama. Something chocolatey.

After Spaghetti Grill, we strolled around the Mid Valley before we settled down for our afternoon tea. We stopped by this Japanese bakery shop, Komugi.

We bought some of the Creamy Custard Krone and took it to Pappa Rich and eat the krones there. Memang sedap.

On another occasion, Hemy secured Groupon discount voucher for Spice of India. Again, we met at Mid Valley and had our lunch at Spice of India.

The place was deserted, as if we reserved the whole restaurant to ourselves.;P

The pappadom. The dipping sauce looks weird in green but taste-wise, not bad.

We had nasi briyani.

With mushroom dish.

And chicken and prawn dish. Can't remember the name of the dishes. But it was marvellous. Padan la pun harga mahal. Satu dish RM30 kot. We had to ask for another bowl of rice. Tak cukup. And to really get the feeling of the Indian taste, we ate with our hands. The spices are really awesome. Sedap hingga menjilat jari. Not only that, the smell and the colour of the spices linger on the fingers for a long time. (Err....SPR should consider using these spices to replace the indelible ink..;))

Next in our mission was Sunway Pyramid. Initially, Hemy suggested Hartz Chicken Buffet. So when we arrived in Sunway, we browsed through the Directory list, found the restaurant's name but the restaurant was nowhere to be seen. So we asked one of the security guards there. Dah tutup rupanya, baru seminggu. Isyh...melepas we all. So, we settled down at TGI Friday's.

We had these potato skin dish as starter. Potato skin pun boleh jadi dish kan? ha ha... Tapi sedap.

I had pepper and mushroom chicken that comes with herb rice. So-so la... Penat kunyah ayam.

Hemy had pasta. The pasta does not usually looks as plain as this. But Hemy asked for no sayur, thus the plain and colorless look of the dish.

Mas ordered the burger. Looks appetising.

That ends our food mission for now. It won't stop here, I'm sure. Will be more later.:) 

Sempena Ramadhan yang akan tiba, would like to wish all selamat menyempurnakan indah puasa. Mudah-mudahan Ramadhan tahun ini lebih baik dari tahun-tahun sebelumnya. Dan mudah-mudahan our Ramadhan diary is not just full of food for the tummy, but also food for the soul.:)
Managing my stress
I was at a wedding some time ago when someone said this to me: 'You don't look like someone who has 5 kids. You must have managed your stress well.' I just smiled and said, 'Ye ke...?'

Well, I am not sure about that. I don't deny that at times I do feel stressed out. But a good stress manager? I don't know. But I do know that I have several mechanisms of releasing or venting out the stress. One of it is my whatsapp groups. Particularly the group of my high school friends. 

Once, when I was stuck in a heavy traffic jam while driving back from work, these conversation took place:

Nak stress sebab jalan jem pun tak jadi bila baca the conversation. Ha ha... In fact, I still laughed when I read the chat history just now. I supposed this can be one of my stress management kit. What's yours? :D