Monday, March 30, 2009
According to Wikipedia, a good posture is the stance which is attained "when the joints are not bent and the spine is aligned and not twisted." In this position, a person is thus able to completely and optimally attain balance and proportion of the body mass and framework. Good posture optimizes breathing and affects the circulation of bodily fluids.
I've come to realize it has become my bad habit to slouch - and nowadays I find myself conscious of my posture. I am more aware now than ever that I've been slouching whenever I sit down - and this has always caused a severe pain on my shoulders - and I've come to realize how important good posture is to my overall well-being and also the image that I project outside.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
I know I’ve got a million things to do – but today has been a particularly stressful day for me – physically and emotionally. So I decided to just sit back, de-stress, relax and enjoy a good book. That was what I did most of today – reading Nicholas Sparks’ The Choice – fun and endearing book to read – setting the right mood that I needed to be in – and it helped – thanks to the author.
I’ve believed that I am not the kind of person who loves routine – I love spontaneity and variety – to spruce up my daily life – but lately I miss the routine I had and the longing to return to a normal, routine life. And I miss the attention and the pampering to being respected and acknowledged and all that - and I wanted to rant about it - it always feel better after pouring out.
Right now, I am imagining lazing on a hammock in a tropical paradise...
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Friday, March 27, 2009
The chapati's recipe is from my mom - and she is known for her soft chapatis. It's a healthy and wholesome meal - a great way to start the morning - and it's delicious too - soft warm chapati served with any side dishes you prefer. Herewith is the recipe for chapati:
- 1 cup of atta flour
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup of warm water (the amount of water required depends on the consistency of the flour once you mix it)
- a pinch of salt
- 1 tbsp of olive oil
1. Place atta flour into a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Gradually pour in water and add in olive oil. Draw in the flour and mix into a crumbly dough.
2. If dough is too dry, add a little more water and mix until the dough binds well together. Knead the dough for 10–15 minutes until it is pliable.
3. Leave the dough in the bowl and cover with a piece of damp tea towel. Leave aside to rest for at least an hour.
4. Knead the dough again by hand for 3–4 minutes then pluck out a small piece of dough, the size of a golf ball.
5. Place it on a lightly floured tabletop. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough into a circle (of whatever size you prefer). Dust lightly with extra flour.
6. Place a non-stick flat pan over a medium fire. Once the pan is warm, place the rolled-out dough on it.
7. When small bubbles of air pockets are seen on the surface of the dough, turn it over and cook the other side. Pat down the edges of the dough with a dry tea towel. This helps to puff the chapati up.
8. When the chapati is cooked, serve immediately with any side dishes you prefer - potatoes, or dhal curry, or tomatoes sauteed with onions, or even cheese!
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Herewith is the recipe:
125 gm cream crackers
60 gm butter
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp cocoa
175 dark chocolate, chopped small
500 gm Philadelphia cream cheese
150 gm castor sugar
1 tbsp custard powder
3 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
150 ml sour cream
1/2 tsp cocoa, dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
75 gm dark chocolate, finely chopped
1 tsp golden syrup
1. To make the cheesecake base, process the biscuits to make rough crumbs and then add the butter, sugar, and cocoa.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
I cancelled my trip to Cambodia and Vietnam on 23rd March – after much contemplation, I decided not to go (due to more than few reasons) – first, I had to go for ultrasound on that day; second, because my dad and granddad will be returning from India on the 24th,; third, because of Alfred; and fourth, there’s just too many things that I needed to sort out.
We (my colleagues, Chin Lay and I – 11 of us) booked the ticket from Air Asia some time last year – which I should have realized that it’s way too long a period to wait before the travel time – I should have realized that life can be so unpredictable that it’s not practical to book flight ticket one year in advance – although it was a super-save deal.
I was really looking forward to go on this trip – first reason: I will be travelling with some fun-filled-adventure-loving-people whom I can get along with; secondly, I have always wanted to visit Cambodia and Vietnam. Chin Lay is also supposed to follow us – and because I couldn’t go, she didn’t go as well – feel bad for that. Until the end, I was almost sure that I will be going – but, at the end, because of the ultrasound that I needed to go on that day, Chin Lay advised that it’s better not to go.
Right now, part of my thoughts are with my colleague in Siem Reap – what a waste for me…
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Sunday, March 15, 2009
I particularly love his message advocating freedom in pursuing dreams and to enjoy the miracles of life. The Witch of Portobello is another one of his excellent writings - advocating about loving unconditionally and to embrace life with an open heart. Some of my favorite lines from the book:
~ Everything is worship if your mind is focused on the present moment ~
~ Start doing what you want to do, and everything else will be revealed to you ~
~ Why do people prefer to believe in something far away and forget what is there before their eyes, a true manifestation of the miracle? ~
The statement from the author that strikes me the most - Love simply is - there is no reasoning, no judgment and no authority involved.
I've always pondered on my religious direction and as time passes, I've come to realize the distinction between religion and spirituality; that I am more inclined to explore on the spiritual plane. I've come to realize that the road towards the spirituality quest grants more freedom on what I choose to believe and how I choose to worship the divine force. Every act of mine now carries more meaning and significance than before. And every ritual that I practice now comes from my heart and have a life of its own. And as time goes by, I am learning more and more on the things that drive me forward and am convicted that I am on the right track - the path towards a spiritual journey - filled with love and contentment. I've wondered what faith or religion would I impart to my children - and as I learn more, the answer is gradually becoming clearer to me.
At least we are happy that there is some progress - the lights are all fixed - it looks so much better now. We had a list of priority things to buy according to our budget. We got some kitchen-counter top stools from Ikea and a pair of reading chairs - it is so comfy. During the weekend, we spent almost all our time in Ikea and also on cleaning. We got a pretty cool working table - a peanut-shaped-red-color table - quite mod - and also a working chair. We also managed to get a good deal on Ikea bed and mattress - we spend a total of RM 800++ inclusive of a bed-side table - we bought it immediately since we thought it was a good bargain.
Now, I will just dream of a Thai massage to soothe my body aches ;)
The muffin turned out to be almost a cloned version of the Kenny Rogers muffin. It has a great fluffy moist texture and the texture of the muffin is denser compared to the earlier versions I made (Strawberry muffins topped with crunchy streusel and Oatmeal-apple-raisin muffins) because of the cornmeal. Herewith the recipe (makes about 12 muffins):
- 1/2 cup butter
- 2/3 cup sugar (I reduced the sugar to 1/3 cup)
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3/4 cup frozen yellow corn
1. Preheat oven to 204 degrees Celcius.
2. Cream together butter, sugar, honey, eggs, and salt in a large bowl.
3. Add flour, cornmeal, and baking powder and mix thoroughly. Add milk while mixing.
4. Add corn to mixture and combine by hand until corn is worked in.
5. Grease muffin pan and fill each cup (till full) with batter.
6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until muffins begin to turn golden brown on top.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Day 2 (Friday): Washed and cleaned the unit - nearly freaked out when we saw the marble floor was discolored when we washed it with the normal floor cleaner - after a while, we realised it was the dirt - went to Gas Malaysia to submit gas application form (the form was not accepted due to the waiting-for-approval-from-the-developer-stage) - had dinner with Alfred's family to celebrate his parent's wedding anniversary.
Day 3 (Saturday): Went to Jusco to get miscellaneous items and the marble floor cleaner - went to a lighthing shop and bought 10 sets of downlights - called over the electrician to quote the price for fixing all the lightings and fans - at night, went to Low Yat Plaza to get the Celcom broadband package (I was so happy - finally I can surf whenever and wherever I want) - bought a pair of jeans - ate Chinese food for dinner.
Day 4 (Sunday): Brainstormed on the lightings outlay and design (with occasional disagreements) - went to Ikea to get the lightings - had lunch at his parent's place - went over to Uncle Bala and Aunty Veni's house and had dinner with them.
Day 5 (Monday): The contractors dropped by in the morning to repair the master bedroom aircon unit which was leaking - went to Ikea again to get the Basisk pendant lights which was out-of-stock on Sunday - had lunch with Alred's good friend, Tat Mun and his wife at Marche's , 1 Utama- received a call from the contractor saying that they've fixed the leak in the air con and also the water heater - we were so elated that they didn't have to hack the wall for the repair work - watched Marley and Me at KLCC (which is just 10 mins walk from our condo) - had dinner at Chilli's - I enjoyed my salad to the max.
Tuesday: I took a bus back to Melaka.
I told Alfred that we should take one step at a time and not be stressed out- after all, this is the experience that we should cherish every step of the way. - will post the pictures of the vacant unit soon.
And the best part of it was that we were the first person to move in to wash and clean our unit. We brought in some lamps to 'camp' in the apartment just for the sake of it. The contractors and the management guys were smitten by our excitement and enthusiasm, hehe. They exclaimed 'Wah, going to move in already ah? How? No light and furnitures!" We just casually said "Oh, that's okay, we brought in some table lamps".
After camping-in there, we understood why they were all surprised at our moving-in-right-now-act. There were still some last-minute QC work and minor repair work to be don- the condo was not fully ready for occupancy - we learned it the hard way, haha, after the attempt of staying over there for a couple of nights. First day - the water suddenly stopped in the middle of showering - and I was standing there stark naked with shampoo on my hair and foam on my body. And I waited and waited - and it all turned out hilarious as I laughed out loud - had to use the drinking water to wash myself. And then we got stuck at the unit floor because the lift was not working - and we were on the 18th floor! The Murphy's law started executing itself. A string of funny events - to reminiscence and laugh at in the future.