Watching the Artoo Network

Eid Mubarak & Happy 7th Birthday

Aidilfitri greetings to everyone from us who are spending the holidays in Pasir Mas this year. This year, our family was garbed in black on Aidilfitri morning. The next day was Irfan’s seventh birthday. There was no place in the fridge to store the cake so we cut the cake that morning. Irfan’s cake was very nicely decorated by the cake shop, complete with edible Donald Duck, Doraemon, Ultraman, some funky cat and for some reason, an unidentifiable Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle with a goatee. He must be evil. Meanwhile in the kitchen, Ain was leading the team to cook her nasi dagang, which I sampled quite a lot of before the end of the day. Later that afternoon, Aiman came to visit from Salor with his parents, so Irfan and Aiman did their regular things together, watching TV, chasing each other all over the house and playing with the […]

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Allie’s 13 Month Birthday

Behold, a mosquito bit the 13-month-old Allie’s cheek! [[image:allie361a.jpg:Mozzie bit me!:center:0]] Allie was 13 months old last Saturday August 22nd, also the first day of Ramadhan. She’s had another month of a full-time Mama since I am still in-between projects. And today, Allie is 13 months and 6 days old and it is the last day of my “summer break”. Both sad and glad about it. ūüôā Anyway, another action-packed month has passed by! I can’t believe that even without work, our days are so full and busy, and time still flies like nobody’s business! Allie has been busy growing and exploring her world. She is a pretty fast crawler, and is pulling herself up on furniture, and especially loves to run around the house holding our hands (which is terrible for our backs!). She’s still a little scared to try standing and walking without support, but we think she […]

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The one with the birthday cake

Since there has been a demand for cake, here it is!! [[image:allie330a.jpg:Let them eat cake!:center:0]]¬† * Please mouse over the pictures for captions On Sunday, July 26th, we held a small gathering, a cookout and potluck to celebrate Allie’s first birthday. Guests include a few members of Vin’s baseball team (the team conveniently played their Sunday morning game at the local high school a block away), some of our neighbors, and a few friends. Even though it rained the day before, Sunday was a gorgeous sunny day. [[image:allie328a.jpg:Guests at the cookout with Allie in her high chair:center:0]]¬† Vin played baseball then came home and straight away lit the grill and commenced barbecueing. Burgers, hot dogs and chicken were the meats, while I’d prepared a couple of side dishes.The neighbors brought food and drink as well as presents for the birthday girl! Allie also ate her lunch while everyone mingled: [[image:allie329a.jpg:Picnic […]

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The one with the birthday crepes

Two days after Allie’s first birthday was Vin’s birthday! And since it was his day, he got to pick what he wanted as his birthday treat and he chose crepes. This is my first attempt at making crepes, but I gave it a shot! But first, Allie takes a shot at Lily. [[image:crepe01.jpg:Allie goes after Lily!:center:0]] The recipe was obtained from here, (thanks Alton Brown), where I used his Sweet Crepes recipe. I substituted lime juice for the liqueur. After the dough rested for an hour, I commenced frying up the crepe. The first one was a bit sad – full of holes. More like Roti Jala than crepes… [[image:crepe02.jpg:Holy crepe, Batman!:center:0]]¬† [[image:crepe04.jpg:First crepe ended up a little over crispy too:center:0]]¬† For filling, I made a dark chocolate sauce: [[image:crepe03.jpg:Dark chocolate sauce:center:0]]¬† Allie kept watch to make sure Mama didn’t make (m)any mistakes: [[image:crepe06.jpg:You can do it, Mama!:center:0]]¬† I thought […]

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Allie’s 12 Month (aka First) Birthday

Can you believe it???? Allie had her very first birthday, and turned a YEAR old last Wednesday, July 22! [[image:allie312a.jpg:Hellooooooo I’m 1!!!!:center:0]] Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday to Allieeeeee,Happy birthday to youuuuuu Many thanks to everyone who called/emailed/sent presents/cards/ecards/facebooked/forummed and even blogged birthday wishes for Allie! It made us all very happy and we thank you for your wonderful wishes. *As always, please mouse over the pictures for captions. This last month has seriously flown by! I’m in-between projects so have been able to spend a lot of time with Allie and her Papa! No pesky work to get in the way! Teehee! And Allie has come so far! She has two teeth now (doubled her teeth total in one month!), commando-crawls forward especially in hot pursuit of Lily the cat, strides purposefully if you hold her hands and help her, and she even kicks […]

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Allie’s 11 Month Birthday

Well, somebody’s pleased to be 11 months old!! [[image:allie297a.jpg:Wheee! I’m almost a year old!:center:0]] ūüôā That’s right, the girl was 11 months old last Monday, June 22, 2009. Another fun-filled month has gone by. It seems like I plan to do so much, but then suddenly it’s 8 PM, Allie’s bedtime and the day is done! And she is now 11 months and 6 days old. She sleeps through the night, enjoys music, and seems to be paying attention to the commercials on TV. She still has one tooth (but goodness, it is sharp!) although it looks like others may be coming soon. Allie is growing fast. She can now pull herself to a standing position if we give her a hand, and she is learning to balance and stands with little help. She can lean her back against the sofa and stand while holding objects in her hands. She […]

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Allie’s 10 Month Birthday

My goodness, I can’t believe that is is already June. Allie was 10 months old on May 22nd, and yes, I know it is now June but here it is, Allie’s 10-month birthday post. It’s later than it usually is because the month of May has been very busy for our little family. So let’s get to it. Allie is 10 months and 11 days old today! 45 weeks! She has been ex-utero longer now than she was in-utero. She sleeps through the night most nights and has a grand total of one tooth! Wheeeeee! [[image:allie264a.jpg:Blueberry-stained and happy:center:0]] Can you see the tooth in the picture above? Allie’s personality is definitely becoming more and more defined. She is mostly easy-going and easy to please. She sits by herself to play often, and loves to be read to and sung to. She now stands (with help) and “dances” to the Bingo […]

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Allie’s 9 Month Birthday

I feel like a broken record, but it’s true, time has passed so very quickly. Unbeknownst to us (seemingly), 40 weeks have passed. Allie has now been ex utero as long as she was in utero. She was 9 months old last Wednesday, April 22nd! So it makes her now, 9 months and 1 week old today. 40 weeks altogether. Woo! Her personality shines through strongly, and she most definitely is her own person with definite thoughts in her head about what she likes/dislikes, what she wants and when she wants it. It really is a balancing act to love her and give her everything, without becoming over-indulgent. Plus when she bats those eyelids of hers and smiles, how can we resist? ūüėČ [[image:allie236a.jpg:9-month-old Allie cons the ‘rents:center:0]] Before Allie was born, I thought that she would be the most important thing to us, and that we would love her […]

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Allie’s 8 Month Birthday

This past month has also gone by in a whirlwind. I can’t believe it, but Allie is now 8 months old (last Sunday, March 22)! She’s just continuing to grow and develop before our eyes, and we feel blessed to have her in our lives. [[image:allie198a.jpg:The birthday girl:center:0]]¬† Allie sits like a professional now, able to balance while she plays with her toys, reaching with impressive yoga-like stretching ability to pick up the toys that she has thrown everywhere. She expresses her emotions in so many different ways (not just crying). She giggles and squeals, hugs and kisses, and kicks her feet happily. She loves peekaboo, and loves to run around in the house in our arms, chasing and being chased by each other. She rolls all around the floor as her means of “crawling” – she does get where she wants to go! When she sees you walk in […]

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Allie’s 7 Month Birthday

Last Sunday, February 22, Allie was seven months old. I know I can’t believe how quickly time is flying by, and that it is already March 1st. How did that happen? It feels like we just celebrated the new year, no? And I don’t mean Chinese New Year, either. I mean Times Square, ball dropping, happy 2009! I am hardly even used to writing “09” on my checks (cheques to us Malaysians) and it is already March. ūüôā [[image:allie186a.jpg:Reaching for the camera:center:0]]¬† At any rate, Allie has progressed further in this last month. We are done with reading stories from the Crab Orchard Review at bedtime. Now we are reading another short story anthology (I forget what year the book covers but I know that Michael Chabon edited it). For the most part, Allie sleeps well – from her 8 PM bedtime to 6:30 AM, with usually only one night-time […]

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Sequence of Events

I have a few backlogged blog entries to make, and here is the sequence of events detailing why they were delayed: 1. Thursday January 22, 2009 – Allie’s 6-month birthday. Lots of picture taking occurred. 2. Friday January 23, 2009 – my laptop screen dies in the mid-afternoon. Connecting it to an external monitor shows that the laptop itself is fine. I drive to Best Buy, stand in line forever, only to have the Geek Squad (f*ckers!!!) tell me that a) my laptop warranty ended November of 2008, and finally they come around to say that they don’t fix laptop screens. Please call someone else. They suggest a company. (Don’t even get me started on how angry I was that I drove all the way to Best Buy to have them give me this bullshit. What kind of Geek Squad doesn’t fix laptop screens?) So I get back in the […]

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Lines of Communications

Commemorating Sila’s birthday on the 29th, we have here a series of screencaptures taken from Skype on Atok Irfan & Alya’s computer in Sitiawan The proliferation of the internet and its communication applications has been one of the most amazing things to be invented in the last decade or so. I remember in the early 90s, when my sister’s vacation was over and she had to return to the States, it was the saddest time ever for me. Nowadays, or at least the last couple of times Sila and Vin were¬† on their way out of here, I was all like, “Going? OK, see ya when you get home.” So here are Alya, Alya’s Mom and Dad in webcam view. Alya catches sight of the webcam and is intrigued. Perhaps it tastes good. Grab the sucka! [[image:alya-skype-jan2009-01.jpg:Incoming flyer!:center:0]] [[image:alya-skype-jan2009-02.jpg:Attempting to acquire target:center:0]] Who are these strangle people crowded in the […]

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Allie’s 6 Month Birthday

It happened! Last Thursday, January 22, 2009 (also Yong’s birthday, happy birthday Yong!), Allie was six months old! She is filling her (and our) waking moments with giggles, squeals, chuckles and lots of love. She is an excellent hugger and cuddler, but hasn’t quite yet mastered kissing, and she can be quite the babbler. She still enjoys tossing her toys overboard and making us pick them up for her, and she is getting quite good at manipulating toys, books and such. Vin’s and my glasses are rarely without her fingerprints on the lenses somewhere. Some biggies: she rolled over on her own steam! Yayyy!! She can practically sit on her own (we need to help her balance a little but she holds herself upright quite well). We are done with the stories of Ambrose Bierce (the Civil War short stories turned out to be too disturbing for us) and we […]

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Irfan drinks everyone's drink but his

Intersections in Real Time

The counter ticks up for Ain every year on January 22nd, which makes this the thirteenth year I’ve been around her to hear the counter tick. This year also marks first year Irfan contributed to his mother’s birthday card. We, including Cik Ma and Cik Su, travelled to The Mines to consume some chicken at Kenny Roger’s Roasters. However, there was a chicken shortage there. So instead we invaded Nando’s instead for some peri-peri chicken. In conclusion, I loved the peri-peri sauce and Ain did not. More for me! Happy birthday, Irfan’s mom.

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Allie’s 5 Month Birthday

Yet another month has passed! On Monday, Allie was five months old. She is growing into her own little person, smiling and reaching out for a favorite toy, and able to spend more and more time amusing herself. She has a bedtime and a daily routine. She listens to short stories by Ambrose Bierce at nights and seems to enjoy watching football (American football) on TV (oh no!!!). She giggles and squeals and sings and is generally a good-humored baby. She is getting quite good at manipulating things with her hands, including picking up and sucking on the rubber ducky at bathtime. She finds it amusing to drop a succession of toys onto the floor when she sits in the stroller, and watch us pick them up and hand them back to her. In short, she is a total joy. And of course, pictures! * Mouse over the pictures for […]

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Allie’s 4 Month Birthday

And just like that, another month has gone by. Alya turned 4 months old yesterday. It seems so unreal that she is now 4 months old, and able to do more and more, and becoming her own little person. She now squeals and babbles regularly, sometimes going into the only-dogs-can-hear-her register. She is starting to sleep better at nights (and thus, so are we), and wakes up happy and smiling (as do her parents). She’s really tugging and yanking at the hanging animals on the gymini, and has been busily at work massacreing Yellow Belly (the little hanging insect at her right-hand side off the car seat handle) and the Bee Buzzer. She can almost sit up on her own (I need to give her very little support), and she can stand and support her weight if we hold her up. She’s just learning new things every day! It’s totally […]

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