Archive | September, 2020

Leaving on a Jet Plane, Part 3

29 Sep

For two nights in a row, the both of us had restless sleep, anxious for M2’s journey. The flight was delayed in Doha, hence the anxiety for us.

Apparently, the runway was closed but no further details were provided for the passengers. And after a four and a half hours delay, the flight finally took off.

Well, she has finally arrived safely after the long and tiring journey, and has checked into the dorms, ready to start her two-weeks quarantine.

Leaving on a Jet Plane, Part 2

28 Sep

M2 flew off yesterday evening. My heart was heavy, and there were tears, mostly mine when I hugged her ever so tightly. The time has come to let her go, now that her college is ready to welcome back returning students.

We arrived at the airport early and waited for a bit before the check-in counters opened. Most of the passengers were young adults, students like M2, returning to their respective universities.

The airport was not a bustling hive of activity like the pre-pandemic days. The place looked gloomy. The ever-popular KFC and McDonald’s were shuttered since 18 March, the start of the nation lockdown phases. So unfortunate.

My brave girl returning to college by herself

M2 arrived in Doha early this morning and in transit for the next flight. We managed to talk to her just only. She’s in good spirits despite feeling tired from a lack of sleep and having to wear a face mask and face shield provided by Qatar Airways throughout the journey.

We will be more at ease once we hear from her again the next time from Dublin.

Leaving on a Jet Plane

25 Sep

It has been six months that M2 came back from Ireland at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic mayhem. And it was a good six months with her around; the house is not so big and empty.

But sadly, all good things must come to an end. Time has flown by so fast, and it is time for her to return to Ireland for her studies.

While we are worried about her journey, there are many precautions and SOPs taken by the airlines and airports to ensure a safe journey for every traveler. So we should be comforted by these new norm practices.

I will, as always, track her flight on and being unable to sleep through the night until I know she has arrived safely on campus. A mother’s worry is constant regardless of how old a child is.

She leaves on Sunday evening. Sniffles.

Winged Critters

22 Sep
Critters in the house

It’s been raining a lot these past few nights. And we’ve been getting a lot of of winged critters coming into the house. Looking for a warm shelter?

Last week, we had a dragonfly that M2 and I called a big-assed dragonfly because the wing markings made it looked big at the bottom. Bottom heavy, hence big-assed. Heheh…

Last night, it was a big moth that was unfortunately a little injured. Poor thing was flapping about near the living room sofa but ended up perched on the ceiling light tray.

I wonder what we will get next. Hmm…

Of Snoopy and Happy Meals

21 Sep
My Snoopy World Tour series

I was cleaning out the closet last year and found a forgotten bag of Snoopy collectibles from my Happy Meal days. Ah, the things we did when we were younger.

McDonald’s meals are not for everyone for various reasons. But there was once, a long, long time ago, both hubby and I ate a lot of McDonald’s, particularly the Happy Meals as I wanted to collect the Snoopy figurine that came with it.

I adore Snoopy, and I would go to lengths to collect anything and everything to do with Snoopy. Even if this means eating Happy Meals, I will do it.

After that bout, there were other Snoopy series, but I stopped the Happy Meals. Now, during this pandemic and the various MCO phases, we did eat McDonald’s occasionally when we don’t know what else to eat, or I don’t feel like cooking. However, no Happy Meals choice since there’s no more Snoopy offered.

Day Trip: Cameron Highlands

18 Sep

Wednesday was a public holiday, being Malaysia Day, and we took the opportunity to do another day trip excursion. This time, we went to Cameron Highlands.

Mom came along this time for the little adventure. The journey started late as we couldn’t wake up early. But as we’re not in a hurry, it did not matter. The first stop was at Bidor for brunch.

Wantan Noodles for brunch

I was disappointed that I did not get to eat the Duck Noodles because the order taker was not very clear when she spoke in Cantonese to us. Nor was she attentive to recommend. We all ended up having Wantan Noodles instead.

After the quick meal, the journey continued towards Cameron Highlands. Traffic was not that heavy, and the drive was pleasant enough despite the winding road along the hillside. Along the way, we stopped to buy local produce – bamboo shoots and stink beans, or commonly know as petai.

Buying bamboo shoots and petai

By 12.30 pm we arrived at the Boh Plantation. The weather was cloudy, windy, and a wee bit chilly. Nice though. However, with the pandemic and SOP enforced, visitors had to be controlled for social distancing; we couldn’t stay too long, enough only for a quick tea and scone break.

The picturesque hills of the Boh Plantation
The scone

I felt the scone paled in comparison to hubby’s home-baked scones. It’s good to know though the quality and standard of hubby’s baking skills. As the factory tour has ceased due to the pandemic, there was no reason for us to linger. We left shortly for the Bee Farm, which was not too far away.

Bees and strawberries, and masks on!

It was a short visit as there wasn’t much to see. There was only one strawberry plant worthy to be photographed, and I did just that.

Vegetable farms on the hills

We left for Cameron Highlands for Raju’s Hill Strawberry Farm next. By now, traffic began to build up. Before we knew it, it was like every other car on the road was also going to Raju’s farm! The traffic crawl was a good hour or so. Not nice.

Look at the sky and traffic! It was like a long arduous drive into the abyss

By the time we arrived at the junction to turn towards the farm, the long queue in front change our minds. We decided to leave before the traffic built up again when everyone decides to leave the place.

Along the drive back, we stopped at the roadside to buy some fresh vegetables and more petai! The rest of the journey down wasn’t too bad as there weren’t that many cars yet.

More petai and fresh vegetables

We arrived in Tapah by 5.30 pm and had an early dinner. We were all ravenous as I realized we didn’t eat lunch!

A satisfying meal after a rather long and tiring day

The rest of the journey home was pleasant without much traffic build-up, and after sending Mom home, we arrived home safely. A wonderful day trip indeed.

An Early Surprise

15 Sep

I was pleasantly surprised when my online purchase arrived yesterday. I certainly did not expect the parcel to arrive so soon this week. But it did, and I’m pleased.

So, what did I buy? Yet another DIY set, of course!

DIY project number five! 😍

This will be my fifth set, and from the looks of it, the biggest and heaviest by far (1.682kg according to the parcel description). But even without the weight mentioned, the package felt heavy when the delivery man handed the parcel over to me.

Ooohhhh… I can’t wait to get started on it. However, I have to finish project number four first before I can even open the individual packs inside this latest DIY set to get a feel of things.

Missing Pieces

14 Sep

DIY project number four has been coming along at a good pace until a slight hiccup several days ago. Or should I say, a big stumbling block? I discovered that some pieces were missing! Uh oh.

Unfortunately, I discovered two important elements missing only now after working on the set for some time. I guess I couldn’t have found out earlier as the focus was on the bigger and individual pieces. These two missing pieces are essential for the itty bitty decorations.

Missing item #1: labeled K10, it is a bunch of plastic leaves for the flowers. I sat on this problem for several days, wondering how to overcome this. In the end, I bought a pack of leaves and improvised from there, cutting them down to fit. And they did, thank goodness.

Missing item #2: labeled K09, it is an 80cm length of wire for making the stem/stalk of the plants/flowers. I took some garden wires from hubby’s supplies, and trimmed them down to make the plants and flowers. And they came out good. Phew!

Sometimes we need to improvise and DIY a DIY project. I hope no more discoveries of missing pieces from here onwards.

Knock! Knock! Let Me In

11 Sep

It’s been a while since my preoccupation with the caterpillars in our garden. Ever since the various MCO phases, I’ve hardly ventured out to the garden because I’ve been busy cooking, carving and crafting inside the house.

Knock! Knock! Let me in… 😅

So it was a surprise when we discovered one adventurous caterpillar on our front door! Is it trying to come in? Hahaha… It amazingly made the long trek from the lime tree in front of the house, a good ten feet away, and four feet up the door. How? Why? I don’t know.

We also spotted another one on the same lime tree. While it’s nice to have them around, just to observe their growth and transformation, they’re actually detrimental to the plants.

Nonetheless, we didn’t have the heart to harm our little adventurous friend, so hubby relocated him to the garden. It certainly looked happy chomping away on the leaves when I checked on it the next day.

Relocated to the garden

A New Tray

8 Sep

The mood for online shopping struck a few weeks ago. And I purchased a silicon baking tray, not for me obviously but for hubby. He has been baking a lot during the MCO, so we thought it’d be fun to vary the bread shapes and sizes.

Now, this is our first silicon tray for baking, and it took hubby a couple of bakes to get it right as far as the temperature and timing control are concerned. On the first attempt, I was left in charged to watch the loaves in the oven because he had to leave for the office.

Obviously I cannot bake! 😅

And the mini loaves, under my watch, came out a little burnt! Oops. I had followed the temperature and timing accordingly though…

Second attempt using a wheat bread recipe

So hubby had to make some adjustments. On his second and third attempts, using a wheat bread recipe, the loaves turned out okay. And by the fourth attempt, the mini loaves turned out lovely. All these attempts, I wasn’t roped in to help, thank goodness.

A tad too little (dough) that resulted in skinny minis?

We love the new tray and the breads.

Lovely mini loaves by the fourth attempt