Friday, December 23, 2011

Not Ready

Christmas is sneaky this year. It crept up to me unawares. I'm not ready.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Best Christmas Present of All

At Ken Ray, the Christmas season offically begins with the putting up of our Christmas tree. Then we draw lots to pick someone we have to buy a Christmas present for. This year the budget is not less than RM15.00.

Tradition demands that on D-Day you must identify the mystery giver of your present failing which you will be penalized. If you manage to identify him or her then the giver is penalized. Under such circumstance everyone lies. No one could be trusted to tell the truth.

Our Christmas wish list

 Wishes range from the outrageous to the more realistic and affordable

This was my wish: I really want a holiday in Venice...but I wouldn't mind a trip to Bali. Ok la, I close one eye for a holiday in Langkawi.

After weeks of subterfuge and investigation the day finally arrives when we submit our guesses and open our presents. And that's today!

Lots of presents were already waiting for me at my table 
bright and early in the morning

  Tension mounts as we get ready to collect our presents 
knowing that a penalty awaits us if none of our three guesses are right

Our Christmas tree laden with gifts

All of us with our presents

My gift wrapped in a an AirAsia advertisement torn from the newspaper

To my surprise it's really an air ticket to Pulau Langkawi!!!

Courtesy of my 'Bee

Never in my wildest dream did I expect my wish to be granted. This only goes to show that no wish is too ridiculous. 

All things are possible. 

Dreams do come true. 

And you cannot trust anyone this time of the year - not even your nearest and dearest!

So THANK YOU VERY, VERY MUCH 'bee for making my wish your command - Siri-style! Please keep it up and you'll have a happy bunny for a mommy!

And now our Christmas tree stands forlorn denuded of gifts

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


I planned a surprise for Vive but it backfired on me.

So here we are... Indian dressed in China man baju and me in a saree

How was I to know that he was thinking of dressing cross-culturally as well? Anyway, this was 1Malaysia and muhibbah demonstrated at John Loh and Hui Min's wedding dinner. 

I think I should wear the saree more often

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Iron Therapy for Sleepless Nights

I had one of my sleepless nights last night. I was so fed up tossing and turning, trying to sleep that I finally resorted to my tried-and-tested Iron therapy. It works without fail. Every time!

My best buy of the year

Monday, December 12, 2011

Raymond's Forty-Sixth Birthday

We took Baby Brother to Delicious to celebrate his 46th birthday. For once we managed to take him somewhere nice instead of the normal coffee-shop-style vegetarian restaurant. (That is due to his dietary preference which restricted our choice of venues for meals.)

 The Tong siblings from Lto R: Baby Brother, Baby Sister and me, Big Sister

After a delicious dinner we proceeded to order dessert. We were so kiasu that we ordered 3 different types of cakes for him - Coconut Cake, Macadamia Cheesecake and Peach Frangipane with Vanilla Ice-Cream.

 The birthday boy with his cakes

 We then asked him to make a face and this was the result.

 After that he couldn't hold back his laughter.

 Then he made a comment. Couldn't remember what he said. 

 Then he laughed again.

I love my Baby Brother and I love to see him laugh even more. I think he needs more exposure to both his siao sisters to bring more laughter into his life. 

My share of the yummy cakes

Finally we had afogato to end the wonderful meal.

I hope you enjoyed yourself, Raymond! I did. And here's a Hokkien blessing for you that's worthy of our Mom.
Sin Ku Eong Eong. Choot Jip Peng Aun. Kee Tar Loh Ooi Too Tio Ho Kooi Jin. 
Literal Translation: Body strong, strong. Safe going out and coming in. Everywhere you go, you meet people who will bless you. 

Happy birthday, Baby Brother! We love you.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

24th Peranakan Convention in Penang

I did not sign up for the whole convention but only appeared for those events where I have a part to play.

Somehow the convention this year did not stir up as much exceitement for me as the one held in Phuket last year. Baby Sis also shared my sentiments. Going away for a convention helps because the novelty is missing when you are on home ground.

25 November 2011
Sunset Welcome Dinner-By-The-Sea at Tanjung Bungah Beach Hotel

 Dressed for the beach

 Dressed to participate in the mock "sang jit" ceremony

26 November 2011
Gala Dinner and Dance at Khoo Kongsi

We were dressed in "baju panjang" for our dance

 We couldn't resist fooling around with the sedan chair

 More fooling around

 Our scarf dance

27 November 2011
Baba Nyonya Morning Bazaar at Upper Penang Road

Fan dance from the Sayang-sayang Nyonya Dancers

Peranakan Mansion Book Launch

Received an invitation to the book launch on 24 November 2011. It was a totally nyonya affair.

 The CM Lim Guan Eng receiving a copy of the book. 
Fr L to R: The author of the book Chan Suan Choo, the Director of 
the NUS Centre for the Arts Ms Christine Khor, Soon Jr., Mrs Soon, Mr Soon, 
the CM, a descendant of the original owner of the Peranakan Mansion, 
the Museum Director Lillian Tong and Baba Peter Wee from Singapore

The CM also launched the newly formed Persatuan Peranakan Baba Nyonya Pulau Pinang.

 The CM unveiled the logo for the society and it's the very appropriate nyonya kerosang!

Baby Sis and I with Ms Tan Siok Choo

At first I was a a bit overawed to find myself seated beside Ms Tan. After all her grandfather was Tun Tan Cheng Lock, who together with Tunku Abdul Rahman was instrumental in Malaya's fight for independence. Her father was the late Tun Tan Siew Sin, the country's longest-serving Finanace Minister (1959-1974).

Beyond her illustrious heritage, I later found out that Siok Choo herself is also a very accomplished lady. She had been trained as a lawyer and then became a journalist. She is now director of United Malacca Berhad and OCBC Bank Malaysia Berhad.

My first impression of her was that she is a regal and refined lady but as the evening went on I was even more impressed by her friendly and unpretentious manner. She is so humble and unassuming.

How appropriate the Malay proverb that says: Seperti buah padi, makin berisi makin rendah; jangan seperti lalang, makin lama makin tinggi. (Translation: Be like the padi that bends down as ripens, don't be like the lalang that grows tall but is useless.)

 Me with Dr Lee Soo Kim, author of Kebaya Tales

I also had a fun time showing Dr Lee around Little India while we waited for the event to start. We dropped by a Bubur Kacang stall for tea and mooted the idea of taking the Peranakan Convention back to China!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Glassy Problem

I hate these glasses of mine. They don't suit me at all.

I don't understand why some people can look so gaya in glasses whereas I look so dungu in them?

But I can't change them for the moment because of the cataract on the left eye.

If I remove the cataract, I cannot wear glasses because of difference in power for both eyes will be too great. According to the optometrist that'll cause me a lot of problems.

I can wear contacts on one side, which I do, but I don't want to wear contacts all the time.

All I want is a pair of glasses that makes me look good and is not too heavy so it doesn't press down and leave two depressions on both sides of my nose.

Susah la.