Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Overnight Oats

I have tried a couple of overnight oats recipes before this, but for this Ramadan I decided to go hunting for a new one and stumbled upon this one on Wholefully. They have a classic recipe which serves as the base recipe upon which you could whip up some other flavours to make it more interesting. The classic recipe calls for the normal stuff like rolled oats, milk and greek yogurt. For flavour, they also add some other ingredients such as maple syrup, salt and vanilla extract. They also add some superfood goodness of chia seeds or grounded flax seed to thicken the mixture.  

The Classic Recipe
For today's sahur, however, I didn't add the chia seed (coz I don't have any with me today, will add them in my next batch) and skipped on the suggested flavouring scheme and went with Kurma Milk instead. (Totally knicked this idea from @rinsramli as I bumped into her while going to the groceries to get the stuff for this recipe yesterday). So that made my base recipe.  

Banana Chocolate Chip
To make matters slightly more interesting for @azrulx this morning, we tried the banana chocolate chip variety. I put the chocolate chips in the mixture the night before together with the base recipe. Come sahur time, I quickly sliced half a banana and poured some granola mix on top of it. 

There are some other varieties that I thought looked kinda interesting on the page: 
Chocolate Peanut Butter
Tropical Fruit
Strawberry Cheesecake
Chocolate Coconut

There were some others too that was an interesting combination but a bit too adventurous for my taste profile. These include the Carrot Cake and Pumpkin Spice flavours. Check out the Wholefully page for the full recipe.

OK, Selamat mencuba. Do tell me how you would like to have your Overnight Oats. ;)


Friday, June 09, 2017

Khaleeq On Hard Work and Achievements

It is not always easy being different. And it is obviously extremely difficult when you have two overachieving siblings who amass medals and trophies like bees collecting nectar. They have, like a lot! I kid you not! My number two came to me a couple of times already stating a matter-of-factly that he does not get many medals nor trophies. Not like Khadra or Khaleeda in their various co-curricular activities. On occasion, he would get upset that he "never wins anything". In a more extreme incidence, he feels so demotivated and dejected that he would tell me that I should just put him up in an orphanage somewhere because he does not fit to be in our family due to his lack of achievements. :( He gets over dramatic sometimes, but when this is how it makes him feel, it really makes me feel sad too. 

We have had numerous talks on achievements with Khaleeq - be it about being just a part of something i.e. participating, finishing something difficult and about winning. How it is equally important to show good sportsmanship, about being proud on beating your own limitations and doing better than your last performance, rather than fixated on just winning the top prize. We also talked about how achievements, more often than not, comes with sheer hard work. Just look at how many hours a week Khaleeda puts in for her rhythmic gymnastics, cheer, ballet and tarian practices. It gets even more intense nearing a competition or a show. So, in order to reap the glory, he really needs to work hard. He said he was up for the challenge and so, the quest for something that he could actually participate in, enjoy doing and maybe travel for begins.

From friends' recommendations we found the livemore event series and I went ahead and signed him up for all the remaining Aquathlon and Triathlon events for this year. His first event was an aquathlon (200m swimming and 2km running) in Alice Smith School a couple of weeks ago. Specifically for this, he attended running training with Coach Lini (twice a week) and swimming training with Coach Nur (once a week). At this point, our focus is more on practicing the correct way to run and building stamina - awakening all the sleepy muscles that hasn't very much to do all this while (he does have some balancing and coordination challenges too) and correcting his swim techniques. To prepare for the cycling portion of the triathlon, Azrul had taken the lead to teach him how to ride a bike and he successfully cycled on his own within 2 sessions. Yeayyy!!! We also came as an observer in an earlier triathlon event at Nexus International and attended the pre-competition workshop to familiarise with the transition and whole race setup. So, basically we were ready. Insya Allah. 

So the day finally came for his first aquathlon event and we were there bright and early and feeling nervous. Well, I had butterflies in my tummy. hihihihihi The aim was not yet to be in the middle or leading pack for the Under15 boys category. It was more to set his base timing and more importantly to finish and finish strong! To earn his first aquathlon finisher medal. Just looking at him with his bib number stamped his arms made me smile. Wouldn't it make you too? I was just already so proud of him. Can't believe we were actually doing this. :)

Style sangat shot keluar pool ni

His swimming portion was steady and very consistent. Wasn't in the leading nor the middle pack. Whilst the others raced on in their speedy front crawls, Khaleeq took his time doing 200m worth   of breaststroke, not even stopping for awhile. When he got tired, he did a back crawl or a dog paddle then back to his trusted breast stroke. By the time most of the participants come out of the pool, he had around 75m to go. And when he was out of the pool, the last person still had about 50m of swimming to complete. He was actually looking back and wanted to wait for the boy to finish before we urged him on. 
Father and son, side by side.

Transition was OK and he started with his running portion next. After the first KM or so, Azrul joined him on the road en route to the tracks to finish up his first ever Aquathlon. We were so, so proud of him already for taking on this challenge. Even more so for finishing so strong. He remembered the tips Coach Lini told him for running - for keeping his posture, running tall and swinging his hands and that last dash was just priceless.   

He darn well earned his finisher medal. Alhamdulillah. I was proudest of him for staying on to cheer for that last boy till the finishing line.  

Sweet taste of success
Job well done, Khaleeq. Here's looking forward to many, many more!


Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Back at it. I hope.

Hey there!!!

Been a long, long while, hasn't it? Well, let me keep you updated with the family status right now. 

Me - currently maintaining my weight circa 58-59kg. Always that topic, kan? The constant battle of staying on the right side of the scale. I don't really know since the weighing scale in the bathroom has been showing "Err" since a month back. kikikiki. I do remember that time when I weighed 66kg way back when. So maintaining this is good, but it could be better. Have had a HHTA (Hot Hot Chicken Shit for the uninitiated) attempt to finish the Bikini Body Guide (BBG) for the first time ever a couple months back but yeah, that didn't happen. hahahaha. I might find some flicker of drive to restart it one day. Maybe. Been eating fairly healthily. Alhamdulillah. I used to cook a lot when we first moved into the new house. Now my schedule is kinda haywire with the kids schedule, mostly. What else is new, right? There has been a little bit of travelling too. Will get into it when we get into it later, ok? 

Inche Suami - well he is Turning 40 this year. Alhamdulillah. Generally healthier now. Double alhamdulillah. 

Khadra - Off to a boarding school now. It's her second year now. She is exploring new things like orchestra and choral speaking ; as well as pursuing things that she already loves - dancing, singing and Girl Guiding. So that is keeping her busy. Like really busy. Alhamdulillah.

Khaleeq - Finishing off his first year of secondary school in a couple of weeks! Can't believe it!! We are currently working on quite a bit with him. The main one is his triathlon series to boost his morale and also to work on the physical side. He has also started taking formal art classes to explore his creativity. Academics are also on the plate. Well a little bit of it, at least. hahahaha The final one in the mix is his scouting activities for his social skills, discipline and teamwork. Interesting to see how these individual projects pan out. 

Khaleeda - My ever so busy little diva. Still doing a lot of things this year - ballet, rhythmic gymnastics, cheerleading, dance, running, drama, recycle art club etc. Trying to get her to slot in some study time too to balance it all out. Lots of stories to tell about her.

Kharis Jawhar - he just turned two a week back! So yeah! That's gonna be a post on its own! hahaha

I plan to write quite regularly from now on. By regular, maybe a post a week kinda regular. (Let's not over promise now shall we) Mainly coz I miss writing. (Haaa!! Dan rindu tulis audit report lettew. Sapa suruh resign???? hahahahaha) Also coz I don't want to forget the good and bad memories in my life. I used to write and write a lot. I wrote about my early miscarriages after Khaleeda. Both of them, I think. And as I read the posts, I was taken back to that time when it happened just like it was yesterday. However, I kinda slacked off from blogging after that and I didn't even write about the pregnancy with the twins. Yes, they were the ones expected to be delivered around a year before Kharis was born. That was when my heart was broken to a million pieces. I kinda remembered it in general but no detailed recollection of what actually happened, blow by blow, you know. So I kinda regret not penning that down. So yeah. Let's try. Insya Allah. Here's to more writing. 


Monday, February 29, 2016

Feeding Kharis Jawhar

As at the time I am writing this, there is already another addition to our family. It's been a while, really, because baby Kharis Jawhar just turned 9 months yesterday. :) He has been fully breastfed and I was really, really looking forward to feeding him when he turned 6 months. So, a couple of days before he turned 6 months, I went out and get myself a Beaba Baby Cook. I actually wanted the SOLO model but the store had run out of stock. So, this is what we got: 

I was armed now. To introduce him to solids, I started puree-ing mainly fruits and vegetables, one flavour at a time, whilst looking out for any possible signs of allergy. Using the Beaba Baby Cook made my life a whole lot easier too. The gadgets does the steaming and the blending for you, so that was really convenient. Once the puree is done, I batch freeze them in blobs of 60mls. The silicon freeze compartments are really easy to handle and facilitates 

By trial and error, I stuck to feeding baby KJ at around 120ml per serving. He actually cried pretty loudly when I don't feed him enough. kikikikiki 

We had apples, pears, bananas, sweet potatoes and carrots puree; amongst others. Then after, I started combining two flavours together. The ones that Kharis really liked were apple + pear, apple + banana, avocado + banana, strawberry + banana and sweet potato + carrot. 


Monday, February 22, 2016

Solat Tree

Back after 3 years. And what an apt reason to start writing again, I have something to share.  #sharingiscaring 

I have recently discovered the "Solat Tree" online and had begun using that for my two middle kids - Khaleeq and Khaleeda - last week. The concept is easy enough, the Solat Tree consists of a tree with 7 branches, each branch representing a day in the week. Each branch has 5 leaves, clearly marked for the five compulsory solat of the day. I wanted to train my kids to keep their solat, so this was what I did. I introduced them to the Solat Tree last Tuesday night and asked them to colour the first branch according to these rules:
1. Colour the leaves of the solat that you performed GREEN
2. Colour the leaves of the solat that you missed RED

So, after that exercise, Khaleeq had two reds and Khaleeda had three red leaves. To make matters more interesting, we collectively agreed that they will get to open a reward for getting 30 leaves green this week. With that in mind, we started to strategize. 

I asked them the reason why they missed their prayers and if there were any way for them to make sure they can perform their prayers within the stipulated times. They said it was possible, so we deviced ways of doing so. Khaleeda for example has many activities after school, so we came up with specific strategies on how and when to perform her solat. For instance, she has gym class at a nearby community hall at 1pm. So, she plans forward and makes sure she brings her kain telekung, sejadah and slippers to practice. Takes her wudhu' before class starts and stops for a while after warmup to pray Zohor. We decided to setup a little prayer corner by the hall as the dedicated surau was quiet and a bit scary for little girls to be in alone. So, I had to help her figure out the kiblat direction that day and set up the sejadah ready for her. The point here is that I wanted to facilitate, we were trashing out issues so that they are able to keep their solat complete. Khaleeq had issues with Zohor as his school finishes in the evening. By the time he gets home, it would already be almost Asar. So he came up with the strategy to pray during lunch break, i.e around 1.45pm at the surau near the canteen. On days that he has sports, he would have to bring along his jubah. 

As I shared this on my instagram feed (follow me if you hadn't already (@dillazag)) and Facebook, people were asking where I got the Solat Tree from. I thought to myself, "Hmmm.. maybe I should just redraw this and distribute" So here we are right now. I did just that - this is how my version of the  Solat Tree:

Please feel free to save this and use it. The pdf version is also available - just email me to get it ok?