Tag Archives: USA

The Other Baker

19 Nov

It looks like hubby is not the only person who bakes in our home. M1 is quite a baker too. I supposed this came from her lockdown periods when she was still in the US. With nothing much to do, baking was an outlet to keep busy.

But our other baker bakes adorable stuff. She baked these cute little bear cookies not too long ago. Pretty to look at, delicious to eat too. I hope she will continue to indulge in this whenever she has the time.

Want some bear cookies?

Gain One, Lose One

20 Sep

It was the beginning of Summer when M2 came home, and it was great. With the lockdown imposed, we felt safe in our bubble at home. Then M1 returned from the US not too long ago, and we were complete.

But just when we are comfortable with both girls being home after being empty nesters for some time, the situation has changed again. The Summer holiday has ended for M2, and she has to return to college. Within a short time, we gain one and lose one.

M2’s Summer vacation is officially over, and yesterday, she flew back to Ireland. I’m tracking her journey at flightaware.com as she is still flying when this post is published. I only hope she will be on time to arrive, unlike when M1 returned.

Sending M2 off at KLIA

During this pandemic, every country has its safety measures for international travelers. Although Ireland’s SOP is very different from the one imposed in our country, M2 must self-isolate even though fully vaccinated upon arrival. Rules are rules, and they should be abided by to stay safe.

Here’s wishing her all the best for the Fall semester ahead, and stay safe!

My New Putter

6 Sep

Whenever M1 returns from the US, we get a lot of new toys and gadgets! Her return this time is no different, and there are several new fun things again. One of which is my new 32-inch Raspberry Red putter called the Peanut Putter.

The Peanut Putter!

A whimsical yet ambidextrous and very easy-to-use putter, I think this will be good for me to reestablish my putting dexterity. Having laid off golf for four months already, I think I have lost some putting ability. Sure we have the chipping net in the garden, but that’s for chipping and pitching. Putting is a different game altogether. And even though we have the putting mat, it is not the same.

So if and when the time is right for us to go back to playing golf, my Scotty Cameron putter will have to make way for my Peanut Putter to debut. I hope the occasion will come sooner than later.

Proud Parents Again

30 Jul

Amid this pandemic and trying lockdown, there is good news to share. M1, our firstborn, passed her Masters Thesis Defense yesterday (our time), which is equivalent to the day before for her in the US. It is indeed a blessing to be proud parents again, and we are most thankful this arduous journey is now complete.

This time around, the achievement is more meaningful because she had to endure the lockdowns and work around the disruptions because of the pandemic. And she prevailed. Words pale to describe the relief and joy for all of us. Well done, for lack of a better word; we couldn’t be more proud of your accomplishment.

Out of Quarantine

28 Jun

The wait is finally over! M2 is out from quarantine today. No words are needed to describe the joy and relief for all. We are together again except for M1 who is still in the US.

A Milestone Anniversary

18 Jun

Last Saturday marks the 8th Anniversary of my blog! Wow. I am amazed that I have persevered for so long to keep this going. But all this achievement is unattainable if it wasn’t for the support of all my readers.

The blog has certainly evolved from a journal to share the antics of my girls and my travels. Along the way, I picked up new hobbies, the girls grew up and went off to college, and the travel escapades were lesser.

The travel non-escapades were more evident in the last two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic that has taken over the world and disrupted many things taken for granted.

Well, I certainly won’t take the things I do for granted and am thankful to every one of my readers as you follow me on my whimsical endeavors and daily musings. Happy Anniversary and happy writing to me!

A Virtual Celebration

19 Jan

A memory feed popped up on Facebook this morning: M1 turns 18 today, and we celebrated. That was six years ago. Today she turns 24! Dang, time sure flies.

Wasn’t it just yesterday she turned one, and we had friends and family over for a party? Then the next thing I know, we were at her graduation commencement in the Summer of 2019. That was the last time the whole family was together. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree.

With both girls pursuing their education in two different countries, it certainly is hard to have a birthday celebration. Add in the three different time zones that we are all in, a virtual get together is the only way – either a FaceTime or WhatsApp group call for this occasion.

Happy Birthday, M1! Stay safe.

The Year That Wasn’t

1 Jan

Goodbye Year 2020! What a year it turned out to be. I felt that it was a year that wasn’t – in other words, we were, firstly, short-changed for nine months in our lives and secondly, didn’t turn out so great as many envisioned it would be.

Before reaching this nice number, people, myself included, thought it would be a spectacular year. But alas, how wrong we all were. The Covid-19 pandemic created so much havoc in the world. And everything is never the same again.

Gone are the closeness and freedom that we took for granted with our movement with friends, society in general, and places we visit; in place, it is now constant caution, fear to a certain degree, and restriction.

For me, I felt my 2020 was just three months only, the first quarter of the year. After we went into lockdown in March, the next nine months, day-in, day-out felt like deja-vu. A new routine was born, and old habits had to give way because we had to learn to adjust to the new normal. Thank goodness we didn’t go crazy with cabin fever, and instead, discovered ourselves in many other aspects.

I learned to appreciate my friends, the home, and family more. Although work at the office took a beating to practically zero design work in March and April, it did not dampen our spirits. M2 came back from Ireland and had an extended six-month summer break. M1 stayed put, and we talked every morning to keep her company.

The new normal made both of us manage our time better to be more productive in other things. Hubby learned to bake, an unthinkable endeavor in all the years that I have known him, and I brushed up my cooking skills to widen the variety in our meals because eating out was not an option.

I also picked up a new hobby to keep myself busy after my Meranti wood supply for carving depleted by May. From June onwards, I started working on DIY miniature sets, and have completed nine DIY sets thus far in a spate of six months.

Another good thing that came out of this situation was my golf game, which improved tremendously. With downtime in the office, I was playing more golf than ever. After the lockdown eased, and golf was allowed because it is an outdoor activity, I was golfing up to four times a week! So maybe the year wasn’t that bad after all on the personal front despite being in deja-vu mode.

As 2020 is behind us now, it does not mean the pandemic is over. Far from it, in fact. We should remain vigilant, put on our masks whenever we are in public areas, and keep a one-meter distance apart to be safe.

A toast to a better year ahead – may 2021 bring better fortune and goodness for everyone. Happy New Year, and stay safe wherever you are!

I Need a Haircut

1 May

I have never gone past seven weeks for a haircut but alas, it’s been nine weeks since my last haircut on 28 February! With the MCO in place since 18 March, my hair has grown to become an awful length and mess. I cannot stand it. Ugh!

One day I decided to tie the front of my mop to be what we affectionately call a ‘coconut tree’. One day during our daily video call with M1, who’s doing good in the US, she decided to make fun of my new hairdo. See what happens when getting a haircut is not an option?

😂😅

I think the first thing I’d like to do when the MCO is lifted is to get the mop fixed. I can’t wait…

The End of the Food Trail

7 Jan

M1 has arrived safely this morning after a long but on time flight. So the adventures of her food trail officially ended on Sunday with an early dinner before leaving for the airport that night. With the end of the food trail, this means no more constant heavy meals for us except for several upcoming Chinese New Year-related dinners with friends that have been pre-arranged earlier. We have gone back to the 16/8 diet routine immediately, kicking it off with a salad lunch yesterday.

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Bak Kut Teh with two sides was a good farewell dinner choice

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Contrasting the meat-based dinner, lunch the next day was just fiber and more fiber

The big question I’m sure that must be on everyone’s mind, did I gain weight? Of course I did! How could I not when the eating window was switched to 16 hours and the non-eating window reduced to eight hours or less, three quarters of which was being asleep. So essentially there was very little time in between for a meal to be fully digested before the next meal.

There were nights when I fretted to step on the bathroom scale knowing the numbers I’d see would not be pleasant. But I took it in stride because I knew the situation was temporary and it won’t last long.

There were several times when the weight climbed steadily upwards, it was rather horrifying. However the numbers fluctuated when we ate less; I even managed to squeeze in a couple of salad lunches to lessen the guilt. Thankfully, yesterday morning when I stepped on the bathroom scale, the final result was somewhat comforting for I had expected it to be more. I gained only a kilo (2.2lbs) which wasn’t too bad considering it did spiked up more than that!

I’m sure within a week, this gain would be erased and the 16/8 continues until when Chinese New Year comes around, a new round of festive eating to indulge in!