Sunday, January 29, 2006

CNY in Charlotte

I was expecting a quiet Chinese New Year this year, not like the ones I used to know back home... lion dances,visiting friends and family, cookies, firecrackers, games, gambling, people wearing red and lots of eating. But my dear hubby did some research and whisked me and mom-in-law off to the Asian Mall downtown for the morning festivities on Saturday. The mall was packed with Asians, some dressed in their traditional costumes, everyone carrying a happy face filled with excitement. We had Vietnamese for lunch and bubble tea. It was good!!
Then we heard hoohahs outside the restaurant and was pleasantly surprised to see a large crowd gathered to watch the lion dance performance. Two lions were dancing outside a row of shops accompanied by loud drums, a court jester lookalike (chinese style) and loud firecrackers. So loud that my eardrums are still numb.
Though I've seen all this before back home, but seeing it in a foreign country brings out a whole new perspective and excitement. I felt like I was seeing this through the eyes of a child.

Later that evening, the whole family went to Tin Tin Buffet for dinner. They had some sort of a special CNY spread at the buffet on top of the usual buffet stuff that consisted of frog legs, quail eggs (which I found out was rare here),fresh oysters, salmon,crab legs, fatt choy(beard-looking seaweed), an assortment of sushi and the best persimmons I ever had. We were all stuffed to the max.

So, I'm all ready to welcome the Year of the Dog and bid farewell to the Year of the Rooster. The Rooster has brought many exciting changes to my life last year. Incidently, Jason was born in the year of the Rooster, so go figure.

"So what can we expect from the upcoming year? The Dog is an ethical and idealistic sign, and the year that bears its name will also bring increased social awareness and interest in society's less powerful members. Any tendencies to take, take, take will be replaced by a widespread sentiment of generosity and selflessness. In general, we will all be imbued with the Dog's keen sense of right and wrong" - by Master Rao

Thursday, January 26, 2006

I've been tagged!!

I've been tagged by delapetite
Well, actually I asked for it. I'm such a slave to this kinda crap.
So, here goes....

What was I doing 10 years back:-
Left K.L and started working in Mahkota Parade in Melaka.
Bought my first car.
Bought my first HP computer.

What I was doing ONE year back:-
Planning our wedding!!! Started wrapping our wedding favors.
Contemplating when to quit my job and when to give up my apartment
Working on my immigration paperwork

5 snacks that I enjoy:-
-"PoPo" fish crackers
-Macadamia cookies
-Roasted chestnuts
-Rice crackers

5 Songs I Know All The Lyrics Off My Head Right Now:-
-If by Bread
-Smile by Rod Steward
-Looking Through the Eyes of Love by Melissa Manchester
-Never Been to Me by Charlene
-Part of your World from The Little Mermaid

5 Things I Would Do If I Was A Millionaire:-
- Travel!!!
-Invest in bonds and properties
-Fly home to Malaysia three times a year!
-Share the moolah with the family
-Donate to a children's fund

5 Bad Habits: -
-Being aloof
-Scratching my head and looking for split-ends
-Being a worry-wart
-Acting like a neat freak eventho I can be sometimes a slob
-Not admitting that I have a bad habit when hubby points it out

5 Things I Love To Do:-
-Taking walks in the mornings
-Getting my hair washed at the hair salon and a massage
-Inventing something in the kitchen
-Just lazing around with a good book

5 Things You Would Never Buy, Wear, or Get New Again:-
-Piercing my ears or any parts of my body
-a G-String
-An iPod
-a cactus
-a Cat

5 Favourite Toys:-
-The PC
-My Videocam
-My Sony Digicam
-My Samsung cellphone
-The remote control

Then select 5 people to pass this on to:
I know you guys would probably hate doing this.. but we'll see how many would actually do this :)
Furball Got her Claws
The Mommy Librarian
The Austins

Sunday, January 22, 2006


Had my first encounter with Eurorails last night with Brian, Sophie, Chris, Elizabeth and Jason.
Based on the award-winning Empire Builder game system, Eurorails allows players to amass fortune and power by picking up commodities from cities that produce them and delivering them to cities that need them. Efficient rail lines and effective laying of track means larger fortunes for the players.
Players use erasable crayons or marker pens to lay tracks between major European cities and use the European Currency unit (ECu) as money to purchase routes."
So there I was, the blur one, trying to learn how to play this much-talked-about game with the other Masters of the Rail.
The Masters were confidently strategizing how to transport their pigs, stinky fishes, tobacco and Swedish milkmaids across the Euro continent. I was mostly TRYING to locate the cities and learning how to count!! Pigs seemed to be in high demand last night.
Game ended at almost 1am... and Jason and I went home feeling zombiefied and happy. T'was a good Saturday.

Friday, January 13, 2006

The Disordered One

It's been 13 days since I updated my blog. So, since today is Friday the 13th.. I might as well make this number significant. I have been under the weather (again) since New Years day, and I practically begged my doctor to prescribe a child's dose of antibiotics for me this time for fear of what the last batch of antibiotics did to me. Now that I am finally well , I will start finding a remedy for sickness number two. The doc has diagnosed me with a "mild" case of anxiety disorder + IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). Symptoms result from what appears to be a "disturbance in the interaction between the gut or intestines, the brain, and the autonomic nervous system that alters regulation of bowel motility (motor function) or sensory function". Mr Google also said IBS is generally classified as a "functional disorder".

As for the Anxiety Disorder, my case is more of a
generalized anxiety disorder. Specific manifestations of anxiety vary for each person, which can affect six major systems of the body. Mine would be in the gastrointestinal system and respiratory system, whereby anxiety leads to reduced salivary secretions, spasms within the esophagus (the hollow muscular tube leading from the nose and mouth to the stomach), and alterations in the stomach, intestines, and anal sphincter. These systemic changes result in symptoms of dry mouth, difficulty swallowing, "butterflies" in the stomach, the gurgling sounds of gas in the intestines, and mucous colitis (an inflammation of the colon), causing spasms, diarrhea and/or constipation, and cramp-like pains in the upper stomach, and rapid heartbeats. So if you put two and two together, you can probably classify me as a NUT case.

I am probably going through this because of having to adapt to a new life, interviews, learning to drive in unfamiliar surroundings, learning to be a wife and daughter-in-law, dietary changes, new job, meeting new faces, feeling homesick, withdrawals from "nasi lemak", stress over the townhouse and new house. On top of that, I also think it's because I have yet to have control over my own life and still learning to adapt. I know it probably takes time.
So, probably this whole new change of lifestyle triggered these attacks. I am fine when I am in the solace of our home, but these attacks start when I am in the car, especially at the stop lights, slow traffic and long journeys. I could not even stay inside the car at a fastfood drive-thru or stopping at the ATM. And if a red stop light lasts for more than 30 seconds, I feel like jumping out of the car.
If it was just stress alone, I would have had these attacks before my wedding!!! But no, I was fine then, because I had my family around me then and I had control over the situation. So, atleast I have found the cause of it, but I now need to find the solution.

I am trying to source for natural remedies to cure my anxiety disorder instead of putting myself through medication (Xanax or Paxil). If you have any suggestions, I'd be glad to hear.

However, I am not totally doomed yet!!! Because I just read that meditation, yoga AND MASSAGE (I hope my hubby is reading this) are some tools that may be beneficial for reducing anxiety. So if I can persuade my hubby to give me a massage every night, then perhaps I shall be cured!!

So, yes, my New Year resolution is to find a cure and stop for my anxiety disorder so that I can lead a normal life!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Hello 2006!!

As the new year dawns, I begin reminiscing events in my life throughout the past years. Lots of changes, big and small, lots of hellos and goodbyes, lots of paths crossed and bountiful memories.
Here are some of my profound memories throughout the recent years , and not so recent years. (not in any order of preference (except the first one that is)) :

(2005) Walking down the aisle with my soulmate

(2003) New Year countdown in Sydney : watching fireworks from Harbour Bridge

(2003) Climbing up Harbour Bridge, Sydney

(2003) Hiking in Alaska's Eagle Lake

(2003) The view of Mount McKinley from a 4-seater plane.. and then puking

(2003) Catching my first fish in Pertang Village

(2002) Making my first snowangel

(2002) Spelunking in Gua Tempurung (Tempurung cave)

(2000) Millenium countdown with my co-workers in Melaka

(2001) Running across a field of mean looking iguanas in St Thomas

And events that I wished I had pictures of!! :-

(2000) Evelyn and I went out with a group of male models that we had a crush on.. and we ended up in a gay bar!

My partner in crime(Felicia) and I pushed our sleeping-on-the-sofa Aunt Annie out of the house on the patio in the middle of the night (sure wished we had taken a photo of that)

Cycling with my dad

Just hanging out and talking with my mom

Cousin and I pulling pranks on her ex-boyfriends

Riding on a motorcycle in the rain

Hiking in Frasers Hill and pulling a dozen leeches off from our body

The International Girl Guides Jamboree

The Charismatic Youth Rally - seeing my mom walk in in the last session

Wendy and I sprinkling curry powder on my 2 sleeping cousins.