Monday, March 31, 2008

Once upon a morning...

10. 16 Am. On the way to city….

My mobile buzzing, from Mrs. X, old friend of mine. We will meet at the city on 10.30.
“Sorry dear, I might be late. How if we make, let say…11am?”

I text her back. “That’s ok. C u @ Jets CafĂ©”. Send.

10.45am; Jets Cafe
I still had 15 minutes; I decided to write whatever pops on my head.

11.03Am. Buzzzz….another text message. Mrs. X again. “Can u call me, please.I’m out of credit”.

Hmmm….I felt something doesn’t right.

I rang her, just to find out that she still home –or her hotel, precisely- and said that she thinks she couldn’t make it; her child is upset with her. And she asked to come over.

What? Come over to her place, across the bridge? Forget it.

I just say no. I tried to say as politely as possible. Not only it’s far away, I also had other things to do at the city. Had to pick up something and meet someone. There is no way I can do it –and I won’t-.

She still insisted –asked me to come in- and she doesn’t care if it will be just 30 minutes chat. I kept saying I can’t and tried to explain my reason. It will take me about 40-60 minutes to get to her place, and another 60 minutes journey back to city, and another 30minutes from City to my home.

I am cranky. Not only I’m in the city this early and I did sacrificed other things I can do at home this morning, just to get here on time. But more like the way she told me in the last minutes, and even asked me to come over –as if her place just in the neighborhood.

I’m honoring our-will-be-meeting. With the fact that she lived in Melbourne and we haven’t been meet since like 10 years ago –since I graduated from Uni- I tried to be a good host, with coming early to this place just to save her from unfamiliarity with the city and this building.

I am very cranky now!

I decided to had another cup of coffee -thanks God I’m the one who choose this meeting point, the coffee is good – and started to think about her excuse.

I am mother of two. My second is younger than her. I’ve been through a lot with my first –he is 5years now-. Her excuse is her kid doesn’t want to go, and this kid was angry because mommy ask her (or him?) to go to meet mommy friend, and she gave her mommy ‘angry face’ for like –forever- an hour as she told me. How come you –as the mother- can’t persuade 1.5years old to do or get her with you, and I can’t believe a 1.5years old can put that angry face for so long?

There are might be another issue she doesn’t want to tell me, I guess.

Anyway, here I am now, 11.20am, with a cup of vanilla latte accompany me, and borrowed pen from a very kind waiter –yup, I really want to share this to you, and my pen boycotting me-.

Oh well. Just have to see the positive perspective from this matter. This must be a good time for me just to do some shopping –personal shopping- alone, and spoil myself.

It meant to be.

Saturday, March 29, 2008


We participated on Earth Hour 2008, which finished just about 2 hours ago. We were living lightless for an hour – 8pm to 9pm- without any appliances but fridge running –I can’t sacrifice my fridge just yet- . We had a candle lights dinner, not kind of fancy candle lights dinner –we just had pizza and canoli gelato for dessert-, and we quite enjoy it.

The next thirty minutes we found ourselves busy chat on the couch. Seems like everyday live, only this time with frangipani and lemongrass-scented candle all around our lounge. What else we could do better than chat? And last time I remember did something like this, it was more than six months ago when we had experiencing our first –and only, I hope- electricity blackout because of power-pole failure. We chat everyday. But it’s always one of us chat while doing something, not on the relax mode.

Do we felt good for doing this earth hour? We did. Not only because we enjoy the candle lights pizza dinner or being proud for joining this-become-global-campaign, merely because we can teach our son about this Earth Hour, and why we did it.

I found someone forwarded the article about Earth Hour on one of mailing list I joined. She urged everyone to follow this path, to turn off the lights and appliance and kind of disconnecting with everything electric for an hour. What made me thinking is –sorry, I’m not being cynical here- if she lived in Indonesia, which you get electricity blackout quite often, not only for an hour but like for hours, you did taking part a bit saving the earth from more global warning without you really plan for being electricity disconnect. It’s more like you had no choice. And again –excuse me for being frankly here- Indonesia is not sole country that causing this global warming problem. There are more countries that took bigger slice on this problem.

Enough politics, though.

Just go to the best part, we looking forward to do it again –especially my son- don’t have to wait for next year Earth Hour, another candle-lights-pizza-dinner could be anytime soon.

Monday, March 24, 2008

A girl venture to find best web hosting company….

I met my girlfriend yesterday. Not met ‘met’ but kind of meeting through internet, armed with web cam and microphone. And we talked and talked and talked, as if we sit face to face on a coffee shop.

She told me about one project she having at this moment, building her personal website –she works as a personal trainer for people wants to loose weight or stay fit, she needs her profile to be reachable so people will use her service-. She told me her ventured from one site to another, looking for the best web hosting company, web designer and best support she could get.

De javu? Yep, I felt de javu. Not only I’ve been through what she told me, also I’m still working on it to. Building my online shop from scratch.

I told her that I’m with Site Ground and I’m happy with what I get, so far –I got my domain for free without being overpaying- ; and I choose this web hosting company after I ventured from one to another sites –just like her- ; compare them, asked hundreds of people owned website about their hosting company, and that was the result.

She said she will check this hosting company. Nor because she didn’t believe me or she wants to spare her time do what I did, she just likes to check everything before act. I suddenly remember there is someone who blog about this thing, about best web hosting company. He researched and pulled some information from many web hosting company, and he made a simple list, so people can look and check themselves if anything they can use –doooh…he must’ve been living and breathing the same air with his computer for doing this, imagining there are so many web hosting company these days-.

After hours of talked and laughed –and tears- ,my girlfriend dropped me an e-mail this afternoon, saying that she been out there checking and the blog I recommended to her is very useful, although my web hosting company not listed on this blog. At least, save her time for not to do comparison herself. Good grieve for her.

Now, I can’t wait to see her personal website.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Rules are created to.....

There are 2 rules when you go to dentist –or you can say there are my rules, I’m ok with that-.First, don’t put your lipstick on, it is useless, he or she not going to look on your pretty lip or your perfect shade, he will look at your worst part inside your month which doesn’t need lipstick. So, again, it is useless. Waste your lipstick and your time to apply it.
Second rule is, don’t make appointment to close to lunch time, like 15 minutes before lunch for example –except you’re in emergency and this 15 minutes really worth to fight for.

I consciously breaking these rules last time I visited my dentist. Reason for breaking the second rule mainly because I change my appointment time, nothing left but 11.45. Take it or leave it. Since I really need this appointment, I took it.
For the first rules, the reason just plain silly. I forgot that I went to dentist, not out for shopping. So, complete make-up was on, one minute walked from home, suddenly I remember that I’m going to dentist, and wasting my lipstick. Great.

My appointment took about 1.5 hours –which was quite long and tiring; I have to kept my mouth open for 1.5 hours, remember?-. So after about 1 hour in constant yawning-style (this including couple of minutes falling asleep; yes, I sometimes fall asleep while the dentist worked inside my mouth), my tummy started to felt hungry. When the hungriness stroke peaked, I can’t really help to stop my tummy for made such a beautiful noise. You know that. Noise from tummy when you really want some food. I tried to change my sitting position, doesn’t really help, my tummy kept the action.

I’m sure my dentist noticed it. I can see he was smiling behind his mask. He too, can’t run away from the same tragedy to be occurred. One minute on, I can hear the familiar sound, right into my right ear, and I know exactly where it is come from.

When my dentist finished with all the treatment, he booked me for next session with his receptionist. “Oh, and please, don’t put her long appointment next to lunch time. She’ll hungry and she’ll pass it to me,” he said with big grin on his face.

Good point, doctor!

Monday, March 17, 2008

From "Vantage Point" to Gado-gado

Ever wondering, what this "Vantage Point" correlation with Gado-gado?"
Vantage Point" as you might know is movie title, screening at cinema at the moment. Which we decided to go and watched it today -after years never been stepping into cinema- in the cinema on one of the Shopping Centre close to our place.
And after 15 minutes waiting inside the cinema, pouring half bottle of water into my thirsty throat, they announced that they had problems with the projector and had to cancel the movie due this problem. They gave us complimentary tickets and refunded our money, but that wasn't make us felt better. Our switched back our bad mood.
Took us 3 days to decide that this Monday is worth to sacrifice for movie. Don't start to raise your eyebrows, I know you must've been thinking that we're weird -for taking 3 days just to decided something simple like, go to cinema-. And the joy of walking inside yet waiting for the movie to be screen, blown in like five seconds.
So, why gado-gado?As you also aware that gado-gado is an Indonesian Mixed Salad with peanut dressing. Gado-gado is also a word in Bahasa Indonesia to describing of something mix. That also describe our mix feeling when we had to walk out from Cinema, knowing we have no second plan to spend the morning, and wandering around the Shopping Centre will only make us do more impulse shopping.
At the end, we opt for going home, and stopped by in one of Indonesian restaurant for lunch.
Our lunch menu: Gado-gado.

Sour Cream Pound Cake

Serves 8-10

You need:
250grams butter, softened
1 1/2 cups caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 eggs
1 cup sour cream
3 cups plain (all purpose) fluor
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

How to...

  • Preheat oven to 160 degrees C.

  • Place the butter, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until light and creamy.

  • Gradually add the eggs and sour cream and beat well.

  • Sift the flour and baking powder over the mixture and stir to combine.

  • Spoon into a 23cm (9 in) square or round cake tin (lined with baking paper if necessary), bake for 1 hour or until cooked when tested with a skewer.

Recipe from Donna Hay - Classic 2 Book

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Notes from a wannabe shop-owner

Time flies. I’m running out of time.

This is what happens: I need a website for my products; I want to sell them online. Like I told you before –weeks ago- I though it will be easy. It wasn’t. I am walking toward closely to my deadline. Yes, I am the one who set this perimeter. It supposed to makes me works harder and quicker. But it seems a very big-thick wall always against me, pushing me away from what I plan.

Now, I looked back to Ashop. I felt like I don’t know where to go. Not the Ashop Commerce Australia, this is their umbrella in US. They do the same thing though, e-commerce software as well shopping cart software, the things that I need for building my website from the scratch.

Since I was in 10 days trial with the Australian ‘branch’, I came back to them with full expectation. This US Ashop should be capable to help me better with my shopping cart. Their Customer Service as helpful as always. I believe they might got headache during all the conversations time –or chat-time or e-mail time, whatever you want to called it- with me because I bombarded them with thousand questions and I always wanted instant answer –good customer, huh?-. And all of that session put me toward another dead-end: they can’t help me more. Still the same problem as before: I want to sell my product either with USD and IDRupiah, they don’t have the program to support it-with IDR, I mean-. GOSH !

They really trying hard to help me –and please me-. Then, the got one unexpected advice for me: what I should do is just get the domain & hosting with them, they will provide me with their easy navigate and moderate template, I just have to find someone who able to dive deep into the entire HTML code, and change the code of currency. Or so.

I took that advice happily –and I’m happy to come back to this site again-. They not even hook me with any term or anything upfront, let say, register with them or buy their product first, before gave me the advice.

This is what I call service!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Me on Surya Newspaper - today edition (O-week @ UNSW)

This is the fruit of my labor, for being a spectator of Orientation Week a.k.a O-Week for a whole week at UNSW.

It was a good experience, very entertaining event.

For full story published on koran Surya - Surabaya today, just click here.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Bus-style gift-wrapping

I did this simple gift-wrapping when my son gets invited to his mate party. Very easy, good enough to make an instant impact.

And I apologize that since we’ve been choosing book as a present, I had no picture of this gift-wrapping style applied on bulkier or thicker thing. But you can always use your imagination, use this just for an idea for your own-style bus gift-wrapping.

What you need are:
· Plain paper in 3 different colors (First paper is for main wrapping paper, second and third
paper is for embellishments). Here, I choose light blue as first paper, light yellow as second
paper, black as the third.
· Paper glue and sticky tape
· Scissor
· Color pen / marker (I’m using gold marker)

What you have to do:

1. Wrap your gift with your first paper as the base
2. Draw small squares and triangle on your second paper, and cut. Draw and cut as many as you need. I’m using it as the windows of the bus.

3. Draw circle on your third paper, and cut. Again, draw and cut as many as you need. I go with 4 circles. It will become the tyres of the bus.

4. Stick all windows and tires on your gift that been wrap with first paper.

5. Using your marker or pen, draw circle onto ‘bus tyres’ and Small Square inside ‘bus windows’ so it look more alive.

6. For finishing touch, I did write the birthday boy name on the bus, the bus route mirrored his birthday date. (It always lovely to have your name written on something someone gives to you. Kind of personal touch)

It was turn out this boy’s mum very flattered with my simple work, not to mention the birthday boy for having ‘bus-present’

Cook Book Editor…whoaaa……

This is the hardest thing I ever do for the Daycare my kids attended to. And might be the biggest project I ever got from them –the Daycare Centre Management-. Being a cooking book editor. Yap. Huge task...

What happen is, this centre had accepted one of their casual staff project to collecting recipes from parents and staffs, and turn into a-supposed to be- cooking book. The writer –or I might say the compiler- need this book as her project to pass one of her college assignment. Once the book was ready, and handed to Centre Director, it put her in disbelief. Not because this recipes compilation was very sophisticated, in fact the opposite. Not to mention some fatal typing mistake.

That the short story from the director about the book.

I, being one of the parent who handed my recipes, also furious with the result she taking care of my recipe. I deliberately gave her permission to take as many recipes as she needed from my kitchen-blog, and she turned my recipes into disaster. One of the recipe printed on this book even had the picture & title with no correlation to the recipe itself. I did not understand, is it that hard to just copy-and-paste, and yet the compiler apparently did not do check and re-check.

So, that is my short story about this cooking book.

And also, I want to save my face from further embarrassing moment. My name clearly stated below my recipes. Imagine when parents get the copy, they read this sushi recipe title without the recipe under it – instead of sushi; it is a tip about how to make your own stock-. This will make me look like a moron trying to cook.

Once I got the hard copy, I tried to sit down with post-stick-notes and made some notes. It turned out that I had to edit every single recipe on this book! There are 32 recipes, and not only small mistake like kind of typing or spelling incorrectly –I was wondering if she ever know about spell checker and grammar checker in MS Word- but also fatal misguide. Just imagine that you have to add one vital ingredient when you half way cooking that that ingredient doesn’t listed on the ingredient list so no way on earth you have that ready to add. Perfecto.

3 days on, I’ve been sitting on Uni Coffee Shop for about 3 hours every morning, and I felt stuck. I felt like I’m not making any progress. Still another 20 recipes plus 4 desserts need to check –and edit- and the more I flip the book’s page, the more I found the problem.

I start to think, word “Editor” that was sound so great and glamorous, just loosing its bling now. Not because it’s unpaid job, just purely frustrating. I know the only way to break my frustrating feeling is to switch my span of attention to another thing. Like reading…a cook book.


Tuesday, March 4, 2008

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