Dearest Dania Jazmin,
Happy 3rd birthday my dear.
I can’t imagine, exactly three years ago you came into my life. Even we hadn’t plan for you so soon after getting married, the news of you was certainly most welcome. After 36 weeks of morning sickness, cramps, back aches and 5 ½ hours of labor, there you were. When the nurse placed you in my arms, I gazed into your eyes and just knew..I KNEW, everything I had suffered through was totally worth it.
My Little One - a few days old, and so full of life.
I remember the day we brought you home. We stayed at Wan’s house during my confinement. You were such a happy baby, even then winning people over with your big eyes and scrunched up nose. Even when you cried, it sounded like music to my ears coz it was proof that I had indeed given birth to a 2.4kg baby, that I was indeed A MOTHER.
The days went by swiftly. You learned things quickly; I always suspected you had your fathers’ features and your mothers’ brains. You were rolling, sitting up and standing in what seemed to be a matter of months. It was amazing to watch you. It was heartbreaking for me when I had to go back to work. Still I cherish the fact that I was there for your first clap, your first donkey laugh, your first step. Thank you God, for these small miracles.
So smart. So happy.
For a long time after you were born, I would wake up in the middle of the night, just to see you sleep and hear you breathing. I would creep up on you and place my little finger in your hand and you would squeeze it so tightly, I swear you had waken up. I would steal a kiss and comb your hair with my fingers and you would give me a little smile and sigh. Hopefully you dreamt of flowers and rainbows and cute little rabbits, just like those in Telletubby land.
What can I say about you now? You’re a totally different kid than when we brought you home. You’re fiercely independent but still want my attention and assistance when the time suits you. Most of the time is when I’m paying attention to your little sister.
You have such a smart mouth on you; I swear I never can tell what’s gonna come out of your mouth sometimes. Your grandparents and everyone else thinks it’s cute and adorable; let’s see them handle you for a week. I’m sure they’ll drop from sheer exhaustion from having to deal with all your questions (usually several at one go). Am I complaining? NO! I hope you’ll always come to me and feel free to talk like this, even when (if) you grow up to be an obnoxious teenager. Just don’t forget, your mother is the coolest one around so don’t ever think you can’t talk to me about anything.
A cheeky smile for Ibu.
I love the fact you picked up my habit of reading, especially now since you’ve taken up the duty of reading to your sister. I love the way you explain the pictures in your own funny way, making all the animal sounds and causing your sister to break into hysterical laughs at times.
Hard at work.
I love it when you hug me from behind and kiss me on my cheek. I love it when you take initiative and rub my shoulders; you just seem to know when I’ve had a hard day at work. I secretly love it when it rains, coz you’re afraid of the thunder and you always want me to hold and comfort you. I realize these moments are a treasure coz eventually you’ll grow out of your fear and won’t want or need me to hug and cuddle you anymore.
I love it when you pull my hand and say “Ibu, let’s dance!” and we’d jump, hop and dance to the theme of Bob the Builder or whatever cartoon that’s on TV. We’d dance till we fall down and can’t get up, then we would both start laughing for no apparent reason, just that we realized how silly we must have both looked, with our arms and legs twitching about.
Let's dance some more, Ibu!
There are so many things I want to say to you, so many moments I want to write about here. If there is ever a moment I get mad at you and scream and shout like a mad banshee, please remember how much your parents love you and how much you’ve changed our lives for the better. When you came, you completed our lives and made the world a much brighter place to live in. Because of you, I have a stronger and more meaningful purpose in life.
My Little Princess
Hope this birthday rocks, Manja.
Tuesday, May 31, 2005
Dearest Dania Jazmin,
Posted by Along at 11:39 AM
Friday, May 27, 2005
So it’s Day 3 in Kota Kinabalu. Hubby’s flight is at 9.15pm, so after breakfast I headed off to the reception counter to request for a late check out time. The lady there was kind enough to let us stay until 5pm, no extra charge. Wuhuu for Hyatt Regency!!
We had initially planned to go island hopping but Dania was itching to go swimming again. So we scrapped our plans and spent most of the morning lazing around the swimming pool.
I received a call from Jojet around 12pm, saying that the rest of the team had touched down in KK. Mimi smsed me, saying that there would be a briefing at the event venue at around 4pm. I called up Sobrie and asked him to come and fetch us at Hyatt at around 3.30pm.
Sobrie, bless his heart, was kind enough to take us sightseeing first. Being a regular visitor to KK, he knew of all the nice places to take pictures and see the beautiful ocean view. We went to Sutera Harbour Resort and took pictures by the jetty. Pictures as below.
Dania and Abah in one of the mini parks at Sutera Harbour.
Dania and Abah eyeing the jet skis.
Us at the Sutera Harbour Resort jetty. Notice the yatchs behind us.
Dania and and old boat (called Matahari, which means "The Sun") in the background.
Taking a breather by the jetty at Sutera Harbour Resort.
Sobrie took this picture. I love it!
We then headed off to Pantai 2, with Deen, for some refreshments. We took a stroll by the beach and enjoyed the gentle breeze and the smell of the ocean. We ate keropok lekor, which tasted mighty delicious. It was heaven.
Dania and Ibu by the beach.
One of my favorite pictures of hubby and Dania together.
We arrived at Shangri-La Tanjung Aru around 6.30pm. Hubby and Dania got ready to head home. I was feeling kind of sad to see them leave. It had been a nice holiday getaway, even though it would have been nicer if Dina had been with us too.
We went to the airport at around 8.30pm (it was just 5 minutes from the hotel). After checking in his bags, hubby took some last pictures of Dania in KK. Here’s one with a friend she made while waiting for her flight. How friendly she is!! I hope she never loses the trait of making friends easily.
Dania with her new friend at the airport.
After seeing hubby and Dania off, I went back to the hotel to crash. I could feel a headache coming and was starting to experience tell tales of a fever (sore throat, blurry vision, sweaty palms). Great, tomorrow the event starts and I’m getting sick.
2 Panadols later, with the hotel robe, socks and slippers on, I finally doze off.
Posted by Along at 4:01 PM
Tuesday, May 24, 2005
One of the many perks of my job is I meet interesting people and get to go to entertaining events. Like last night, my company sponsored four tables to the Malam Bintang Lagenda (Night of Legendary Stars) which was held at the Palace of Golden Horses. The event had been organized by Persatuan Karyawan Malaysia, THE organization to be in if you’re an artist. The dinner was held in order to raise funds for a pension scheme the organization launched last year for veteran artists who had contributed significantly to the country’s entertainment industry.
The event was supposed to start at 8pm but as always, these things never start on time. Which was a good thing, coz hubby and I were running late. We arrived around 8.30pm, just 5 minutes ahead of the VVIP, Dato’ Seri Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, the wife of our Deputy Prime Minister. So all in all, it was perfect timing.
The event kicked off with the compulsory speeches from the Chairman and the VVIP. Then it started to get good, with duets from Rosiah Chik and Nash, Ahmad Jais and Salwa, Jalaluddin Hassan and Raja Azura plus Ibnor Riza and Liza Abdullah.
Dato' Seri Datin Seri Rosmah giving her speech.
After that was the fashion show, with kebayas and baju melayu from Chong’s collection. All the models were actors and actresses so it was a much glamorized showcase. Among the models were Maya Karin, Juliana Banos, Aleeza Kasim, Tony Eusoff and many more. Picture as below.
Fashion show. Let's work it, baby!!
Next was more singing by M Daud Kilau (Auwww!!), Fara AF2, Anuar Zain (he was amazing!!), Jamal Abdillah and DJ Dave. The new line up of Panca Sitara (Aziz Sattar, Aziz Jaafar, Salwa, Bob AF2 and Radhi Khalid) also gave a medley of songs.
Jamal Abdillah did an effortless rendition of Zaiton Sameon's Manaruh Harapan.
Anuar Zain - Awesome performance!!
M. Daud Kilau was a hoot!!
Comedian Yusof Chong was hilarious!! Impersonations of Tun Mahathir (former Prime Minister), Tan Sri Mohd Rahmat, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and Datuk Seri Samy Vellu were right on, and had everyone in stitches, laughing. Even hubby (who had acted bored the entire evening) lightened up and laughed until tears rolled down his face. :D
After the mock cheque presentation (our company sponsored RM30,000!!!), hubby signaled to me to go home. OK, fine. I guess 3 hours of formality was enough for him. We went home around 11.30pm. As a result, we missed Siti Nurhaliza’s performance but no matter, we had had enough of her during the Sure Heboh period.
Mock cheque presentation by En. Ghazali Omar (the one in the blue batik shirt), our GM Sales.
When we arrived home, the kids were already asleep in front of the TV. Poor things. We carried them up and decided to call it a night. 12.00pm and the next day is a working day. Arghh!!!
Posted by Along at 5:15 PM
Friday, May 20, 2005
So we arrived in KK around 5pm. Actually I arrived much earlier and had to wait at the airport for nearly 2 hours. After grabbing a taxi, I headed out to Terminal 2 to pick up hubby and Dania, then we headed off to our hotel.
I had picked Hyatt Regency coz
1. It was a 4 star hotel but much cheaper than Shangri-La Tanjung Aru (half the price)
2. It was smack in the middle of town which made walking to wherever we wanted to go to possible.
Hyatt Regency KK.
The room was nice but unfortunately we didn’t get one with the view of the sea. Instead we got one that was overlooking the café so every night we were serenaded by the hotels’ band, which, fortunately, was very good.
The first night, we walked along the towns’ beach strip, looking for some place to eat. We went through the Filipina market, which is basically a souvenir place. Thousands of souvenirs available at really cheap prices. We didn’t stop to shop coz all of us were hungry so we just browsed around to see what was available. Finally, after walking from one end of the beach strip to the other (with plenty of complaints from Dania), we decided to eat at the pasar malam (night market). Food was nice and very cheap.
Dania at the breakfast table. More cornflakes please, ibu.
The next morning, we decided to take a walk around town. I had planned for us to go up the Signal Observatory Hill and see Atkinson Clock Tower.
If you plan to do a lot of sightseeing, DON’T bring along a 3 year old. Especially one that ENJOYS whining all the way.
“Ibu, penatlah. Dukung!!” (Ibu, I’m tired. Carry me!!)
“Bile nak sampai ni?” (Are we there yet?)
Tak bestlah jalan-jalan ni. Nak balik hotel, mandi swimming.” (This sucks. Let’s go back to the hotel and go swimming.)
So at last, we didn’t go up Signal Hill. We did get to see the Clock Tower. Pictures as below.
The Atkinson clock tower, halfway up the hill.
About the Atkinson Clock Tower.
Dania and Ibu enjoying the sights in KK town
Dania in front of the water fountain
Dania and Abah with Mr Swordfish in the background.
It rained a little bit in the afternoon so we spent the rest of the day in the room, watching movies. Finally, I got to see Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Great movie, by the way. Dania was a little freaked out by the werewolf scene but overall she loved it.
Watching Harry Potter in the hotel room. Ooo, he's handsomelah, ibu.
Hubby took Dania to the swimming pool around 6pm. I followed suit ½ hour later. Terminator 2 was on; Edward Furlong rocks!! Hahahaha. You can see pictures of Her Royal Highness swimming like the little mermaid below.
Dania and Abah at the swimming pool
Dania luuuurrrvvvvess swimming!!
A colleague of ours had promised to take us out for dinner that night. I was already visualizing tasty prawns, lobsters and fish. This was exactly what we ordered when we got there. Thanks to Sobrie and Deen for taking us to Salut Seafood Restaurant. For three people, we ate seafood until we burst and it only cost us RM132.00 In KL, I can imagine it would have cost us at least triple the amount.
What we ate at Salut Seafood Reastaurant. BURPPP!!
With our tummies full, we headed back to the hotel. Hubby asked if I wanted to go island hopping the next day but I didn’t want to get too ambitious.
Dania tired out.
Work calling (yes, I’m blogging on company time) so more on our trip in the next entry.
Posted by Along at 10:41 AM
Wednesday, May 18, 2005
Like I mentioned, my trip to KK was great. Even though for some minor hiccups (which I’ll tell you about later), we all had a fabulous time. Never thought that sheer happiness was just a short 2 hour flight away.
The beginning of our trip was adventurous enough, to say the least. Since hubby and Dania were on a separate airline as I was, we had planned for the flight schedules to be near each other. My flight was scheduled at 12pm so hubby booked his flight online at 11.40am. Or so he thought.
That morning, we got out of the house around 9.30am. Drove to the office as some of my officemates had offered to drive us to the airport and then bring back our car and park it in the office basement. We planned it so we would arrive at the airport around 10.30am, loads of time to catch the 11.40am flight.
11am and we’re standing in line at the Air Asia counter. Hubby gives the counter lady his ticket printout and waits for confirmation.
The lady looks at him.
“Err..what time is your flight? You’re not going to be able to make it.”
I look at hubby. Hubby looks at me.
“But it’s only 11am. The flight is at 11.40am.”
The lady checks the computer.
“No, the flight is 11.10am. Here, it says so on the printout also.”
Hubby reaches out for the printout with shaking fingers and scans the ticket. Sure enough. Flight time to KK: 11.10am.
“I’m sorry but there’s no way you’re going to make this flight. They’ve already closed the gates.”
Hubby looks at me. “I’m so sorry”, his eyes tell me, “I fucked up”.
“You’ll have to purchase another ticket for the next flight at 2.15pm. Ticket counter is over there.”
We head towards the ticket counter in silence. Both of us are still reeling from the shock.
“Two tickets to KK for the 2.15pm flight....that will be RM707.00.”
Hubby takes out his credit card and hands it over to the ticket lady with a heavy heart. I give him a hug and tell him “It’s ok. What’s done is done. It’s not your fault. I should have checked the ticket too. When we get to KK, everything will be on me. Let’s not let this spoil our holiday for us.”
Five hours later and we’re all in KK, safe and sound. What proceeded was three glorious days of relaxing, sightseeing and eating seafood till we burst.
More on that in entries to come.
MORAL OF THE STORY: Always check and recheck your ticket. Hubby swore he had booked online the 11.40am flight but what was printed out was 11.10am. Always get someone else to check the ticket for you, in case of rare eye-disorderly-whatever-infections. It never hurts to be at the airport EXTRA early, just in case.
Posted by Along at 5:09 PM
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
Yes, back home with my babies again. I've never seen such beautiful faces, greeting me at the door.
KK was great!! The food, the people, the view. I’m sure going to go again, maybe when Dina is a little older then we can all go as a family.
I’ve been away from the office for nearly a week so work is piling up. So many papers to prepare so I can’t write much.
Stories and pictures from KK coming soon.
Posted by Along at 3:31 PM
Wednesday, May 11, 2005
So I’m in front of the computer, waiting for hubby to get back from mother-in-law’s place. Dina and Nisa are safe in Melaka. God damn it, but I miss my baby so much already. It’s her feeding time and my breasts are telling me so. Dania is asleep, despite all her best efforts to stay awake until morning. The bags are packed, ready for our trip tomorrow.
So I’m flicking through the channels, watching reruns of friends and other mundane night shows. I flip through the photo albums and pause at Dina’s pictures.
She’s been gone for 4 hours. It feels like 4 weeks.
This is truly one of my worst nightmares. Not having my baby with me, close by.
Not being able to hold her, kiss her and smell her hair.
I know, this is just until Monday. Some mommies feel like this indefinitely.
I say a prayer, please don’t let me be one of those mommies.
Posted by Along at 12:38 AM
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
We’re going to Kota Kinabalu. By “we”, I mean hubby, Dania and myself. Poor Dina and Nisa (my maid) are being shipped off to Melaka to my in-laws. At first I wanted to take Dina with us, coz the thought of 5 days away from her was just too much. Then I thought since the main reason we’re going is because I have to attend an event there (in other words, work!) plus hubby and Dania will be going via Air Asia while I’ll be going via MAS (company paying), it would be too much for hubby to handle if BOTH kids went along with him. Plus, Dina is still too small to appreciate the trip, she’ll just get tired and grumpy all the way.
So we’re going tomorrow. Hubby and Dania will be staying until Friday night and I’ll be coming back Monday morning. I must make sure to bring my breast pump so I don’t dry up while I’m away.
I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures while we’re there. We’ll be staying at the Hyatt Regency which is nice coz it’s smack in the center of the city. So we’ll be able to walk to most of the places we wish to see.
I’m gonna miss Dina like crazy. I just know it. It’s amazing; she’s 7 months plus already. How time flies!!
She’s so smart. She’s sitting up, which really took her only 3 days to master.
She’s already crawling all over the place at lightning speed, which is kind of funny and frightening at the same time coz you’ll always find her at the end of the stairs or under the couch or near the entertainment unit where all the sharp edges are.
She’s definitely a morning person, already up and chipper at 7am.
She laughs when you call her name and cries when she sees no one around her.
She’s an attention grabber, much to the annoyance of her sister. I can spend hours talking to her and listening to her coo back at me.
The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades!!
She already has a favorite cartoon (Bob the Builder) and shouts with glee whenever her sister sings the theme song to her.
She’s starting to sleep through the night, which is kind of sad coz I enjoy those quiet night moments we share together, just the two of us.
My sleeping angel
Dina, please be good at nenek’s house. Ibu will call you everyday. Sleep well and think of ibu when you’re unhappy. Ibu will be back before you know it.
Posted by Along at 9:15 AM
Friday, May 06, 2005
This is the only excuse I can come up with for my last entry. And guess what? I’ve also been bitten by the lazy bug. Lazy to blog, that is.
Yeah, so hubby and I had a disagreement. It happens in marriages. Fortunately, since the kids arrived, we don’t get into fights that very often. Weird. People always say “Having kids really tests the relationship between husband and wife.” I believe in my case, the kids definitely brought hubby and I much closer together.
So don’t worry. We’re not getting a divorce or anything drastic like that. It was just a case of me being too sensitive and him being blur, as usual. We made up that very night; it’s always hard to stay mad at each other for long.
I'll post another entry up soon. Promise.
Posted by Along at 5:06 PM