A very sad story of the life of my little FeeFee

I received news that my precious FeeFee passed away peacefully on 9 July 2017 after a short illness.

She lived a long life, prolonged perhaps since she lived in a cage for over a dozen years.

Cute and so playful as a kitten and so proud and self confident as a mother cat.

My heart is heavy and feeling sad.  Numbed beyond words but she is now in a better place.

Beloved FeeFee
4 July 1999 – 9 July 2017

Greatly loved and fondly remembered always.

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We did not know when her actual birthday was but American Independence day, 4th of July was an easy date to remember hence we adopted that date for her birthday.  On her birthday, we would cook a whole fish for her and that fish was a treat and symbolizes a birthday cake.  A friend gave her to us.  She was cute and adorable with blue eyes and grey fur, a tiny little wee kitty barely a month old.  That was a long, long time ago, way back sometime in August in the year 1999.  We named her FeeFee.

This post is a very sad story of the life of my FeeFee.  I am extremely remorse as I type this story.  It is a story that hurt me deeply, yesterday, today, tomorrow and everyday. I am hurting so badly because I believe my FeeFee’s life must be in agony.  What is…

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A jar of caper & a crying baby

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I was promoted to be a new grandmother and that was almost four months ago.

Today, I am still lost, not knowing whether to laugh or to cry.

Our little baby is such a handful.  My poor daughter is having a hard time.  If only our little bundle of joy doesn’t cry so much, her mum would caper with glee.

All we could do at this stage is to stay calm, provide all the care we could to pacify our crying baby.

That jar of caper sits unopened on the kitchen bench.

There’s no time to even bake a pizza !

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From the desk of a new grandmother

Upgraded to GM (grandmother) at the age of 55, I am not sure if it is a sign of old age or a sign of happiness or both.  Feeling buffed, perhaps like a sportsman coming out of the gym showing off his muscles.

When one gets past 40 years old (at least for most women I know), one tends to forget her age.  Unlike the teens or the early twenties who look forward to their birthdays,  year after year.  Oh, you can’t wait to reach your 21st birthday to be an independent adult and wear a key pendant around your neck.

After reaching my early 40s, I tend to reflect in my head and do a little sum to get my age.  Mentally I took my year of birth minus the current year equals how old I am.  I honestly stopped counting.  Inside me, I feel the same way as I did some twenty years ago.  My hobbies have not changed though perhaps my body may look a little bit out of shape and my face may show some wrinkles.

The best thing about being a GM to me is that I have successfully gone through motherhood and raised my daughter (or perhaps a son for others) into a fully grown responsible adult about to start her own family.  A little one is born, another generation.

A new grandchild tends to be a bond between a mother and her daughter (son).  As the daughter reaches out to her mother for advice on what to do with a crying baby, the connection is deeper, more of respect and guidance that the new young mum seeks to care for her baby as her mother had cared for her years ago.  Ideally, mother and daughter appreciate each other more fully when the daughter becomes a mother and the mother becomes a grandmother.

Our little Gloria (as I call her but Kirsty is her name) is two months old.  She is not an easy baby and demands 100% of her mother’s time.  My daughter, Jo is undergoing baby blues, in fact postpartum depression .  I wish I could help but having a full time job is no help at all.  In my free time, all I can do at this stage are the little things like helping her with dinners and bringing them out for some fresh air.  Those are mother-daughter’s bonding times made possible by little Gloria.

This is just the first part of my journey.  I have yet to experience any grandmother-grandchild bond.  Perhaps when my daughter returns to work, I could care for Gloria where possible hoping to make childcare more affordable for her parents.  At present, I cannot imagine myself to be a ‘mother’ (or grandmother) as years ago, I was blessed with help from my aunt (who raised me and my children) or hired help that didn’t cost us an arm and a leg.  I have not raised any of my children single-handedly as Jo does (other then when her husband is home) with Gloria.

One day perhaps, I will have a bond with my grandchild, a stronger bond that I ever had with my own children.  My three children have strong emotional bond (love) with my aunt whom they look upon as their grandmother.  Sharing of affection for each other is the best thing in the family.

As my journey of a GM begins, I look forward to an opportunity for nurturance (mother-daughter), a sense of reliable alliance (bond),  showering love and feeling loved.

Feeling good, something money cannot buy.

From the desk of a new grandmother.

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Our wish for a healthy bundle of joy

Friday’s child is full of grace.

Our prayers and wishes for a healthy bundle of joy finally arrived.

Little Kirsty, born on Friday 10, March 2017.

Our first grandchild, first child of my eldest daughter Joanne and her hubby Terence.

Precious story, a milestone into my autobiography.

Little Borneo girl is now a ‘Nanna’.

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The Road Taken

I was back home again !

A much awaited yearly trip to visit my elderly aunt who is like a mother to me.

After two weeks quality time spent in Kuching where I was born, my Auckland home looks more ‘Peranakan‘ than before.

The road taken – from Kuching (Malaysia) to Auckland (New Zealand) came my grandma’s betel nut set and her Nyonya beaded slippers.

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This photo is a living tradition of my heritage.

Happy Year of the Fire Rooster

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The world celebrated the Lunar New Year of the Fire Rooster on 27 Jan 2017.

In Chinese astrology, each zodiac year is not just associated with an animal sign, but also one of five elements: Gold (Metal), Wood, Water, Fire, or Earth.  Both zodiac sign and element are believed to affect one’s personality and destiny.

We had a few family and friends round for dinner and we did the prosperity toss.

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I may be a Banana (a term for an Asian person living in a Western or non-Asian country) but I have not lost touch with my cultural identity.  The term is derived from the fruit banana which is “yellow on the outside, white on the inside“.

Wishing all bloggers good health, happiness and prosperity. Happy blogging !

Rare – My one and only Toby

I was a cat lover till I decided to adopt a wee four-legged golden boy.  Years ago, I had dogs before but never made any effort to bond with them.

With Toby, it was different.  He came to me when he was around a month old.

He came from a litter of six pups, a cross of Staffordshire terrier and Labrador.  We got him from the local SPCA.

My Toby is a rare find.

He has the face of a Staffordshire terrier and the colour of a golden Labrador.  Sometimes, he barks for no reason.  He runs around in circles when he is bored.  For some reason (no idea why, probably his Staffordshire bred), he is weary of strangers especially when they come around the house.  He wants to be the boss but he is timid so he barks at the same time wagging his tail.

There were instances when he lunged at strangers and frightened the hell out of them getting me into trouble and frowned upon.  Although he doesn’t bite, his barks makes him look vicious.  However, if you are not fearful of him, a pat to him means you are a friend.

He is loyal and loving.   He loves to go for car rides and walks, loving them more than food.  He loves me and anyone who takes him for a walk or car ride.  He sleeps either in my flatmate’s room or mine.  He loves to go under the covers even on a summer night.

He loves toys and goes crazy with them.  His favourite game is ripping the squeaker off any stuffed toys.  When you walk into my house, you may think I have a baby in the house.

Yes, I do have a ‘baby’, only that baby is four-legged.  My baby turned 7 years old on 19 August 2016.  He was so thrilled to have a lick and a piece of his birthday cake !

Woof, woof, my cake is the same as what mummy had on her birthday too !   Yummy !

 

 

 

Tob & Hog well and alive

toby in autumn

It’s autumn and the nights are getting cooler.
Hogs are rare as they’d keep away.

In this house we have a hog catcher,
who despite the pricks and thorns
goes crazy every time the scent of hog comes near.

It seems like the more he got pricked,
the more excited he becomes.

At the close of St Patrick’s night,
New Zealand time,
this dog by the name of Tob
who visited the Vet
this afternoon for his annual jab,
was supposed to relax
and have a good night’s sleep.

Instead, it’s three hours since
he caught that Hog.
Little drops of blood
which may remain my carpet stain.

Let’s pray that what’s inside the prickly ball
though hurt will not die.
Indeed, no one is passing,
not Tob, not Hog.

Tob’s still on the go,
at my back garden
barking every now and then.

The neighbours will sure make noise if this carries on.
Most will probably frowned at me
for the lack of disciple
in raising such a wild uncontrollable boy.

May God bless that no one is going to die tonight
for I know, my Tob though playful and not so nice,
a Hog catcher he may be
but not a Hog eater and never will be.

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via Witness

When you write, who is watching you? A post about a beloved dog’s passing inspires this week’s challenge.

Dining with strangers

I thought being a foodie has all the blend such as love, connection, passion, thankfulness, satisfaction, courtesy all in one bag.  For the love of food, I aim to connect the community and neighbourliness through my cooking.

‘Dining with strangers’ as the reporter bluntly wrote is perhaps so true.  In fact, I was hoping that opening my house for dine-in will bring the normal ‘let’s go out for dinner’ into another level.  Not a typical restaurant with separate tables but just one table in a home where diners sit down to share a meal and engage in conversation.

In fact ‘Dine with Locals in a Home Restaurant’ is already happening all over the world.  I had been busy last couple of weeks trying to bring this foodie connection into New Zealand starting with my neighbourhood.  I hosted what I called an ‘inaugural degustation dinner’ at my home on 18 Feb 2016, invited a representative from our local community press and a few friends.

Our pretty reporter was polite and came with a bottle of wine (a NZ custom when you are invited to a home dinner) and a photographer who took hundreds of photographs both on the food and me.  He was all serious and I guess I won over the food because there was only me in the published article without the food.

I was hoping that through the press, I could communicate to the community that here is someone who hope to create neighbourliness through food.  As strangers sat down for dinner that night, some tend to talk a lot more than others and one seemed to lead the conversation astray (from my objective). Our guest of honour was pretty quiet and I sensed she probably could not understand why I could open my home to some strangers.

Today the article came out and  inevitably, it was very opinionated and even had a food rating.  Wow, I did not expect that but a score of 6/10 was like a hole in my cooking bag and loosing some of my lovely blends.  I wasn’t expecting to be a top 50 Auckland Restaurant, I am just someone who cooks with love in her heart and one who hope to connect the community in friendship through the food.

As my website puts it, if you can cook, come cook with us, if you are looking for homecook nutritious meals, we are just a click away.  If you want to do something different other than going to a local or new restaurant, come dine-in with us.  We may be strangers but perhaps we could walk away being acquaintances and one day be friends.

Join Fusion Homechef and dine with a difference.  Come dine or cook with us.

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“If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him… the people who give you their food give you their heart.” -Cesar Chavez

Thank you to Natalie Brittan and Wayne Martin of Pakuranga Times for the article.  

I am a foodie

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I call myself a foodie because I have a thing about food.  I used to be the first to try any new restaurants but at the end of the day, I ended up going back to those same restaurants that suit my taste buds.

I read that an average person has about 10,000 taste buds and they are replaced every two weeks or so. But as a person ages, some of those taste cells do not get replaced. An older person may only have 5,000 working taste buds. That is why certain foods may taste stronger to a child than they do to adults. Smoking also can reduce the number of taste buds a person has.

This knowledge is important to me in my new food adventure as a ‘home chef’.

Going back to my passion for food, I have now come to a stage where I tend to appreciate cooking and creating recipes more than trying to be a food connoisseur going around town to every new restaurants.

Collecting recipe books is one of my foodie habit.  Recipe books are big and bulky.  They are all over in my house, some in cupboards, others on bookshelves or below my TV display racks and coffee table.  Most are near-new but they do collect dust as I read them once (maybe twice) and never actually use them for the purpose they were meant for.  I love to cook but I tend to create rather than follow the step-by-step instructions.  Hence, I guess I am no good as a baker but creative cooking is my passion.  I  love the blend, the aroma, the mix and match, the art of creating something so delicious that just melts in your mouth.

This post comes about as I am on my way to launch my adventure and share my love of cooking with the community.  My Kiwi Home Chef aims to unite all foodies together through our love for food.

FOOD is such a mouthful  that further extends to fruits, vegetables, gardens, orchards,  meat, savouries, sweets, vineyards, wine, food photography, recipe books, anything and everything.  So be it eating or cooking, everyone can join us in this adventure.

We will have an inaugural dinner at my home sweet home tomorrow to share my cooking passion.

Life Imitates Art – I will imitate the Chef.

Little Borneo Girl has been a ‘bit’ (in fact very) busy all because I am a foodie !
Welcome to my Kiwi Home Chef. (Please click to enter.)

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