Monday, April 27, 2020

Three pieces of masks

We received our 3 pieces of masks in the mail today. It's a good gesture but I somehow find it impractical. Three masks for three people in my house and for only one time use.

The practice in Taiwan is different. They allow each person to buy 2 pieces of masks per week using their ID card. The price is controlled and they make sure they produce enough stock. And the have a system to ensure you adhere to only one purchase per week.

It is still ok now we are mostly at home and do not need to use it so often. But when MCO is lifted, it will be another story. Will we have enough supply for the entire nation?

I certainly hope so.

Will there be another panic buy when MCO is lifted?


Saturday, April 25, 2020

Setting up a recording studio at home

My church has been meeting online even before MCO began on 18 March, partially online before that and fully online after.

As per our duty roster, I wasn't my turn to worship lead until next week and with the team now up-skilled to run the weekly worship service seamlessly, it's now my turn to get myself set up for next week.

And I wondered if I need to get the proper equipment to set up a home recording studio and I found this video simple and informative. 

5 Things You Need to Set Up a Home Studio

All is good except that if I were to get the mixer pad and the condenser mic she recommended, it will cost me RM2000.

So looks like I will have to just settle for the bare basic that I already have: just my computer. 


Friday, April 24, 2020

MCO Police Block #2

I was caught in a police block today, for the second time since the start of MCO.

The first one was when I went to the airport to pick up my son returning home, and that was exactly a month ago. That time, the police officer was very nice and friendly about it. 

But not so this time.

I wasn't worried because I wasn't flouting any regulations. I was within 10km of my home, I was alone in my car, I had a mask on, I went to the doctor's office, got some groceries and was on my way to pick up food I have ordered via the telephone. All essential purposes. 

The moment I stopped my car at the blockade, I showed them my identity card with my address on it and told them why I was out. 

The police asked me if I have a letter of authorization.

A letter? To go buy food?

I do have a letter for work since I am working in essential services, but I was not out for work. Just to visit the doctor and to get some food since I was already out. 

The first police officer directed me to the other side of the road and the next police officer questioned me again and I repeated the same thing. He looked into my car, which was full of groceries, but he was so reluctant to let me go. 

He finally did but he was so unwilling to do so.

I did wonder why and I figured out he must have thought I was trying to lie my way of out of it. 

I do have my doctor's report, which I would fish out if he would still not let me go. 

But wouldn't you think he would render it fishy since I seem to have too many valid reasons?

I understand they are doing their job and it is right that they should call out those who lie to break the MCO.

And good for them. And thankfully, he finally believed me. 

My lesson though is that - avoid that stretch of road! I wasn't thinking and took the wrong route. If I had stuck to my usual route, I wouldn't have been caught. 

But it's an interesting experience nonetheless.


Thursday, April 23, 2020

Wonderful Things of the World #13: Fried Meehoon

I had a craving for fried meehoon and I made some today. It was simple but oh so delicious. 


Wednesday, April 22, 2020

It feels like an oven at home

What I miss most about my office is the winter-cold air-conditioning. I am not joking, some of my colleagues do go to the office in woolen jackets. 

Now that I'm working from home, the only air-conditioner I have is in our bedroom and that is not working so well either. 

And the unit in the lounge which we seldom use is no longer working, and so conveniently at the wrong time. 

My hubby bought a room thermometer and it arrived today. I'm not surprised to see what's the room temperature right now.

And my body temperature is just 3.5 degrees away.

So how do I stay cool?

I have no choice but to bear it and to get used to it. When it gets too hot, I put a bottle of frozen drinking water to my face and as it melts down, to drink.

Such is life working from home. 


Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Yummy Chocolate Mug Cake

I have been craving for chocolate cake for the longest time. 

I have only been going out to the supermarket to get groceries once a week and not anywhere else and so I am not sure if the bakeries are open. And I rather not go check them out either. 

And so I decided to make a simple mug cake. No eggs, no oven. Just mix cocoa, flour, milk, sugar, oil, baking powder, salt and Nutella in a mug and pop it into the microwave.

And voila!

At a time when I am working from home and having done that for more than one month now, I no longer have the energy to make anything complicated.

So the microwave is a lifesaver. 

It is not as good as a baked moist chocolate cake of course, but still, it's the good old rich chocolate cake albeit in a mug.

If you want to try it out, the recipe is found here.


Monday, April 20, 2020

A full day of back to back Teams meetings

I spent the entire day today running townhall meetings for my company from 9am to almost 5pm with 15 minutes breaks and an hour lunch break in between. 

By the time we were done, I practically shut down both my PC and my brain and retired for the day. 

It was not a tough thing to do but having the mind on full alert to manage all the sessions from 9 to 5, it was certainly taxing. 

I hope the next townhall will just be one session for everyone.


Sunday, April 19, 2020

Psalm 23 - beautifully translated in Bahasa Indonesia

With our choral group Grace Notes not meeting up for practice since the month of March, I am still trying to connect each other by encouraging all of us to do a daily devotion together. 

So some of us are doing this devotion from YouVersion: Journal - Psalms courtesy of International English Service Jakarta.

It is a very good reading plan. 
In the devotion on Psalm 23, we were recommended to read the psalm in Bahasa Indonesia with it being a beautiful translation of the Hebrew. 

I can't find an online Malay Bible, and so looking at the Bahasa Indonesia version, it is indeed very beautiful written:
Mazmur 23
TUHAN adalah gembalaku, takkan kekurangan aku.
Ia membaringkan aku di padang yang berumput hijau, 
Ia membimbing aku ke air yang tenang;
Ia menyegarkan jiwaku. 
Ia menuntun aku di jalan yang benar oleh karena nama-Nya.
Sekalipun aku berjalan dalam lembah kekelaman, aku tidak takut bahaya, 
sebab Engkau besertaku; 
gada-Mu dan tongkat-Mu, 
itulah yang menghibur aku.
Engkau menyediakan hidangan bagiku, 
di hadapan lawanku; 
Engkau mengurapi kepalaku dengan minyak; 
pialaku penuh melimpah.
Kebajikan dan kemurahan belaka akan mengikuti aku, seumur hidupku; 
dan aku akan diam dalam rumah TUHAN sepanjang masa.

I'm so thankful to the LORD, kerana saya dapat berdiam diri bukan sahaja di rumah saya sendiri, tetapi lebih pentingnya seumur hidupku boleh saya berdiam diri dalam rumah Tuhan sepanjang masa. 


Saturday, April 18, 2020

Kuih Keria FAIL

I wanted to make this:
...but this was the results:

I made two mistakes. 

One, I accidentally bought Japanese sweet potatoes and two, I used brown sugar.


I'm not sure if I will try again. 



Friday, April 17, 2020

My new home office

Finally! I cleared up the clutter in my library and I now have my new home office.


I was using a small table and dining room chair downstairs and I keep getting backaches and stiff neck because of it. 

So I gathered the energy to clear the clutter and set up office in my library. 

It's not ideal since I'll be using a sofa with a regular table. My hands may suffer. 

And it would be much warmer in the daytime. I wish I had central air-conditioning for my whole house. Don't we all.

I hope this will work.


Thursday, April 16, 2020

Getting familiar with MS Teams and MS Live Events

I spent the whole day figuring out how MS Live Events would work for an event for my company, and if MS Teams would be preferred for our purposes.

I did not have the chance to host the Zoom meetings for my church but from my limited view, I can see how much better and versatile Zoom is compared to Teams.

Except that for Zoom's capabilities, it has compromised its security and we are not allowed to use it for work anymore.

We have to use the more secure MS Teams and MS Live Events and it looks like I will be spending the whole day again tomorrow testing it and getting it ready for use next week.


Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Dah tak larat nak hadap dah...

"Don't you dare think this is heaven cluster...please clear the table after the meal. Wash your own plates. This frontliner has no energy to face it anymore..."

This is not funny or amusing anymore.


Sunday, April 12, 2020

Out of energy, out of ideas

I'm already running out of energy and ideas to cook. 

But more out of energy than anything.


Saturday, April 11, 2020

Getting a haircut during MCO

My son needs a haircut badly but even though our government will be allowing hairdressers to open during the third wave of MCO, I won't be sending him there.

It's better to be safe and have long hair.

I found this video on a tutorial on how to cut medium to long men's hair by scissors, which looks doable...

...except that my son, who do cut his own hair, just told me he doesn't trust me.


Friday, April 10, 2020

I am grateful

Too many things happened today, good and not so good but I am grateful.

This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. 
~ Psalm 118:24

Blessed Easter to all!


Thursday, April 09, 2020

I am obsessed with my phone storage space

I don't know why but I'm so obsessed with maximising my phone storage. I keep clearing its cache and clearing media in my WhatsApp.

Maybe it's all because of that, my WhatsApp.

I have been receiving so many photos and videos it's really clogging up my phone. 

And since I'm home, there are a few apps I don't use much. So off they go.

So from this...
...I reduced it to this.

I need to stop online shopping and window shopping with Shopee and Lazada. Off they go.

I have my Kindle Paperwhite with me and since I started working from home, I can't find the time to read anything anyway. So Kindle app, off you go.

The Facebook app is huge, second to my Outlook app. It went up to the size of almost 800MB. It had to go. I shouldn't spend too much time there anyway. Without the app I'll be logging in via Chrome. 

And finally my Outlook app. It's crazy huge. It went up to a whopping 1.1G! 

I can't remove it since I need it for work as I can't always be sitting in front of my PC every minute and every second. I did a search online but couldn't find anything that could help reduce the size, until I figured out something. 

It has to do with what I have in my Outlook. It syncs across all my devices and what I have in my PC Outlook is what I will have in my Android Outlook. 

So what I did was to clear my folders, i.e. my Sent, Clutter, and Junk folders. 
And voila! it reduced in size. Not by much though. It went down to 756MB but it went up to 897MB and now it's at 767MB. Not by much but I'm so glad that I figured it out at least. 

I'm not sure how long this obsession gonna last. I only have 64G internal memory, with a 128G SD card. But not all apps will automatically store documents externally.

And so probably I will be still obsessed, until I get a new phone with more memory.


Tuesday, April 07, 2020

My big blob of water blister

The blister I have on my finger now isn't so bad but I have never had one this bad.

The entire scalded section of my finger is now a water blister. 

I'll save you from the sight of it. 

I googled and found out that water blisters are fluid-filled sacs on the skin and they are formed when when the outer layer of the skin is damaged and the body sends blood to heal and cool the injured area. 

The blood sent is in the form of blood serum without clotting agents or blood cells. Ah, that why it's not red but clear fluid.

These serum sacs serve as protective pads with the outer layer of skin protecting the wound from infection, while new skin is being formed underneath and the fluid absorbed. 

Aren't our body is so amazing in self-healing itself?

Though most times it cannot.

And it is now top most in our responsibility and priority not only to protect ourselves but to protect others by social distancing ourselves.


Monday, April 06, 2020

My finger got fried

I was careless while preparing dinner today that I got hot oil splashed on my finger and got it scalded.

It was so painful but dinner had to be served and so I continued cooking with water running down my hand or a cold pack wrapped around my finger. 

As a result, the kitchen was in a mess, since I can only cook with one hand. But dinner was good. I made fried rice rice with luncheon meat. 

It then took me 3 hours to dull the pain. I was adviced to use apple cider vinegar and aloe vera and a few other things which I do not have, but in the end, only cold water worked. 

It doesn't look too bad but it's about 2cm long with a big blob of blister in the middle of it. 

I read that it will take 3 weeks for it to heal. Apparently I do not need any bandage if the blister is not broken but it will be a challenge not to irritate it.

This is what happens when I am not careful.

And this when my friend suffered the same fate with boiling hot water yesterday.

Tsk tsk tsk...yeah, how careless.


Sunday, April 05, 2020

A slight scare

I had a slight scare today. I'm praying and hoping all will be okay and that it's nothing in the end. 


Saturday, April 04, 2020

A dance so sublime

Ok, I spent the whole day mostly lazying away but found this video that I watched over and over again so many times.  

Ten x Winwin Chereography to Lovely by Billy Eilish and Khalid

Ten (in white) is from Thailand and he is known to be an excellent dancer. Winwin (in grey) is from China and he is trained in Chinese traditional dance, which gave him a ballet-like quality and shape to his dance. 

Watch it and tell me what you think it means, and which of the two dancers moved you more.

You might end up like me watching it again and again and picking up more and more things as I watch.

It is spectacular.

And also check out Winwin's solo here:

Winwin solo dance - 7th Sense


Friday, April 03, 2020

Have you been stress eating? I am

How have you been controlling your food intake being isolated at home?

I find it more difficult because I keep wanting to eat. I don't think it's because I'm more comfortable at home or that food is more available. 

I think it's the stress.

Which is why I find this helpful.

I always keep a packet of Fisherman's Friend Cherry Flavour in my office drawer to pop one into my mouth after lunch to stop myself from eating anymore. But I don't do it all the time. 

I now have a packet on my table at home. 

And I think my stress has been sky high. I keep popping them into my mouth. 

It's working though because not only am I maintaining my weight, I am beginning to lose some. 

But I'm hungry now.


Thursday, April 02, 2020

I can't imagine having to cook everyday but now I do!

I am no cook and this 16 days of having to cook at home has been hard.

I don't cook everyday, we took delivery but only once and we do venture out to take away food. We still get to eat the food we like, from nearby restaurants.

But when I cook, it's either...

...beef spaghetti or...

...pork or beef porridge.

And a few other dishes I don't care to mention, though my kimchi fried rice and my variety of sandwiches aren't too bad either. 

But I need to cook something different.


Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Grocery shopping this morning in Giant

I went to Giant to replenish my supplies this morning and considering the situation we are all in right now, they are doing it pretty well.

They are only limiting 100 shoppers every half an hour. 

On entry, my temperature was taken and sanitizer squirted onto my hands. I was then given a green tag with a number and "30 minutes" printed on it.

Just as I was wondering how they are going to enforce the 30 minutes, they started announcing that those with the green tags are to proceed to the payment counters immediately. Looks like I've used up my 30 minutes. Brilliant.

I had all the stuff I needed according to my shopping list except for a few items and off I went to the payment counter, and there wasn't even a line. 

But as I proceed to pay, a line began to form but it wasn't long. It was like the pre-coronavirus days except we are more focussed and no one was talking to each other. 

I then noticed that the tags are in 3 colors. I figured that when I go there again next week, provided they still maintain the same system, I'd arrive 5 to 10 minutes before the half an hour to the hour and have my shopping list ready. 

Shopping has certainly changed. Life has definitely changed.