Monday, May 26, 2008


I read this in the papers today. Yee I-Lann a Sabahan artist's creation, the Huminodun was sold for close to RM100k at the Christie's Art Gallery in Hong Kong. That's a pretty amazing achievement. Congratulations! Finally, some real talent and something truly worthy of pride coming out from Malaysia! Unlike the world's largest flag or tallest building (which wasn't even designed by a Malaysian to begin with) or biggest curry puff! And I love this image. The feeling of mystery it evokes, the beauty of the Kadazandusun woman. The beauty of the pregnant woman and the miracle of pregnancy. The power and strength of the woman as a 'creator' - according to the legend of Huminodun, a woman's body was sacrificed to create paddy and in this image life is created in the woman's womb. The dark, cloud-heavy sky combined with the woman's long black hair is haunting and mysterious. Mount Kinabalu another symbol of strength in the background. I even like the black dog looking on. All set in the middle of the barren paddy fields. Hey, Sabah's got talent. But we knew that already. So I wanted to know more and googled Huminodun and this is the story of Ponompuan:

Sources: after a text by Benedict Topin (Kadazandusun Cultural Association), and with excerpts from ‘Traditional Stone and Wood Monuments of Sabah’, by Peter R Phelan

First, there was nothing but Kinoingan and Sumundu . Together, they created man and the universe, the earth, and everything seen and unseen, known and unknown.

In the beginning, all was well in the Heavens, and the world was pure and beautiful. But one day, Ponompulan, Kinoingan’s son, rebelled against his divine father, and he corrupted the hearts and minds of the humans on earth.

Disappointed and angry, Kinoingan banished Ponompulan from the Heavens and cast him to Kolungkud . Then, to punish mankind for their sinful ways, Kinoingan sent seven plagues. The last plague was a severe draught, and famine threatened to destroy every living being on earth.

But at last, the people on earth realised their sin, and turned back to Kinoingan, to ask for forgiveness. Ponompuan, Kinoingan’s only daughter, entreated her father’s mercy to forgive the people of the world and consented to Kinoingan's proposal that she be sacrificed, as a symbol of the greatest love of all.

Kinoingan sacrificed His only daughter so that the people could have food. Her body parts were planted as seeds and became the food resource of the world: rice. Ponompuan’s spirit dwells in the paddy, and is the seven-in-one Bambaazon (Bambarayon), the spirit of the paddy. Red rice is the most sacred of all, because it was from the flesh of Ponompuan.

Ponompuan, who is often called Huminodun, is in essence the soul of the paddy. During harvesting time, the Bobohizans (Bobolians) usher the seven-in-one soul of Bambaazon to dwell in the Tangkob (Toguruon), at home, until the next planting season is due.

Bambaazon is embodied in every part of the paddy and its related products. During the course of its seasons it is inevitable that the paddy is damaged, be it naturally, unintentionally, innocently or through abuse and neglect. Also, during the harvest itself, parts of the spiritual components of Bambaazon are separated. Thus, it is of utmost importance that immediately after the harvest Bambaazon’s dispersed mystical spirits are collected by the spiritual specialists, brought home, re-united, healed and appeased.

The Bobohizans perform the Magavau, Modsuut and Humabot Ceremonies, travelling though the different levels of the spiritual world to rescue the severed and strayed Bambaazon. Whole again, Bambaazon will ensure that the next harvest is equally bountiful.

To thank Kinoingan for Bambaazon’s gift of a good harvest, the Pesta Ka’amatan (Harvest Festival) is held. The Kadazans forgive each other, restore and strengthen peace and harmony – not only on a worldly level, but also between nature and the spiritual world – and play the gongs, sing songs and dance to the ancient rhythm of life.

To commemorate the greatest love of all, Kinoingan’s sacrifice of His only daughter, the Kadazans idolise Huminodun and select the Unduk Ngadau (lit: zenith of the sun; Harvest Beauty Queen) in order to remember that Ponompuan was perfect: she was of total beauty of the heart, mind soul and body.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

I'm a lefty, so what?

I'm a lefty. We're creative people. Lefties should NOT BE engineers. Did you know that less than 10% of the adult population is left-handed? And that it is more common for a man to be a lefty than a woman? Most lefties prefer their right hand for some activities and some of them are ambidextrous to a certain extent. I however, am not in this category. I'm a lefty all the way. Oh, in case some of you are wondering there is one exception; I wash my arse with my right hand. Heh. Lefties are supposed to be intellectually advanced (compared to righties) in Math, Sports and Art. This is super interesting, I got it from Wiki:

"In 2006, researchers at Lafayette College & John Hopkins University in a study found that left-handed men are 15 percent richer than right-handed men for those who attended college, and 26 percent richer if they graduated. The wage difference is still unexplainable and does not appear to apply to women."

"...does not appear to apply to women" Shucks!
Studies have shown that the left-handed's lifespan is also considerably shorter than our right-hander counterparts. By 9 years!!

More From Wiki:

"There are many theories on how being left-handed affects the way a person thinks. One theory divides left- and right-handed thinkers into two camps: visual simultaneous vs. linear sequential

According to this theory, right-handed people are thought to process information using a "linear sequential" method in which one thread must complete its processing before the next thread can be started.

Left-handed persons are thought to process information using a "visual simultaneous" method in which several threads can be processed simultaneously. Another way to view this is such: Suppose there were one thousand pieces of popcorn and one of them was colored blue. Right-handed people—using the linear sequential processing style—would look at the popcorn one at a time until they encountered the blue one. The left-handed person would spread out the pieces of popcorn and look at all of them to find the one that was blue. A side effect of these differing styles of processing is that right-handers need to complete one task before they can start the next. Left-handers, by contrast, are capable and comfortable switching between tasks. This seems to suggest that left-handed people have an excellent ability to multi-task, and anecdotal evidence suggests that there are more creative stems due to this ability to multi-task.

Right-handed people process information using "analysis", which is the method of solving a problem by breaking it down to its pieces and analyzing the pieces one at a time. By contrast, left-handed people process information using "synthesis", which is the method of solving a problem by looking at the whole and trying to use pattern-matching to solve the problem."

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Guilt Trips

Some time last week I was feeding Elil her dinner at the table. She was on her high-chair and I was seated beside her. Meal time was going ok initially but after several spoonfuls she suddenly started crying. A manja cry. She had her arms stretched out to me and obviously wanted me to pick her up. Instead of picking her up immediately, I tried to pacify her first. Maybe she was thirsty? So I gave her some water. Or maybe she wanted her toy that dropped on the floor? That didn't work either. She just wanted to be in her mummy's arms. So I stood up and pulled her up slowly out of the high chair. This didn't happen smoothly though, she was a little stuck but I continued to pull her up slowly anyway. Hoping she would eventually wriggle herself out. Then suddenly she lets out this really loud cry and in moments is screaming on top of her lungs. I know instantly that I have hurt her. I release her gently back into the chair and realize that her thigh was stuck under the tray and as I pulled her out, it was scraping against her skin. It was red and bruised. I then removed the tray and held her close to me making sure I was not touching the scraped area. Poor thing was bawling. I held her tight and kept telling her I was sorry but she seemed upset, angry even with me. I don't know if other mother's feel this way too but the guilt that just rushed through me was unbelievable. Obviously she was in pain and maybe in a little shock but she was fine. No permanent damage. But I felt like such a failure. My sister and Mon were around. Both were silent. I kept thinking to myself, they probably think I'm an incompetent mother. I definitely felt like one.

Another incident happend on Monday. At the dinner table again. She was having soft rice with boiled carrots and fried fish. I put a small bowl in front of her with little balls of the soft rice, small carrot cubes and tiny pieces of fish. She's had quite a bit feeding herself and me giving her some in between. Watching me tear pieces of fried fish off the fillet she gets excited and wants the fillet. I don't want to give it to her but she's crying for it. And it's SO HARD to not give her what she wants. So I compromise, I cut off a bigger piece from the fillet and let her hold it. She is so happy. She starts to bite off pieces and chew slowly. I continue to make little rice balls for her and not a split second later, she has the whole chunk in her mouth. I PANIC. She coughs a little, her face turns a little flushed and she looks like she's about to choke. I think the fish is not in her throat yet. So instantly, with my thumb and forefinger I push her jaw apart and try to pull the piece of fish out of her mouth. Alas, no fish. She's swallowed it. There was no choking threat afterall but there was difficulty in swallowing hence the cough. In my panic, I must have been a little rough and gave her a shock. And she burst into tears. My Boo Boo was so angry with me. Again I hold her in my arms and try my best to comfort her. She was not very forgiving. Only till I showed her the little fishies in uncle Allen's huge aquarium of course. In an instant she was quiet and smiling. My heart doesn't stop beating at 5 gazillion bpm until much later. do I love thee, let me count the ways....

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

My "Sacrifice"

I know I know. It doesn't seem like a big sacrifice. But really it is. Especially to an addict. CD shopping makes me happy. Really happy. I know all you CD fanatics out there reading this are nodding your heads in agreement right this moment. Thank goodness I am not alone in this CD crazy world! Above is the Blueberry One Size Deluxe Prints AND it comes with a GAD One Size Microfiber Insert. I got the Blueberry Minky in Pink Dots on Chocolate already! Soooo hehpie.

Why you may ask am I giving this one up (for now anyway)? Well, Elil has 17 CD's to date. Which really is enough for an average wetter. And since I am determined to Bokashi my kitchen/organic waste, I've decided to spend my hard earned dosh on the trusty bin! And take a break on the CD shopping. It's still fun (downright addictive) to check out the new CD (and all that goes with it) arrivals though. The temptation is oh-so strong. Don't know how long I can hold back.

Hubs is flying out tonight. He will be gone for 5 days. Boo Boo and I will miss him dearly. ONE good thing from all his travelling is....well I am on the lookout for a wetbag, preferably Wahmies (regular) coz they got the Pink Disco Dots design that I love so much and will never go out of style. AND I found a baby pouch with the same design from, Peanut Shell. Thank goodness they have a retail outlet in Sydney! Plus they have a Mother's Day sale and are giving 40% off all slings/pouches. Woohoo! I am torn between a cotton stretch and a cotton reversible. I want the reversible with the stretch but somehow it can't be made this way. Any one oso can la, both oso santik bah. Here they are:

The cotton stretch. They have the pink version as well but somehow doesn't look as good.

The cotton reversible. Reversibles are more expensive.

I have a sling (adjustable with rings, a gift from a friend) which is great. It's a Moms In Mind and if I am not mistaken is from Singapore. You can get it from my friend's online store, Great Expectations. The great thing about this sling is ANYONE can wear it, me in my petiteness and hubs in his giganticness. The reason I need another sling/pouch is so that while my current one is in the wash, I can still go on wearing lil' Elil. I don't think you believed that excuse for a moment! Darn it! I just lurrrrve the funky designs and colors okaaaaay. CD's and slings/pouches are like shoes, you need/should have one to match every outfit!

REUSE: Composting Kitchen Waste

Ever heard of Bokashi? Yup, neither did I until one day I stumbled upon this post, Composting Kitchen Waste. Please take the time to read the entry and I hope at the end of it you will be inspired like I have been. Well, I have contacted one of the blog authors, Helen and have ordered a set for myself. The initial payment for the set is on the high side (RM100 - includes a 20L Bokashi bin and 1kg Bokashi) but think of how you can help sustain our environment by reducing the amount of chemicals released into our ecosystem. To all you cd crazy and envinronmentally friendly mamas out there, the set equals the cost of a cute One Size Blueberry Minky with a RM3 discount (shipping costs excluded). I'm sure we can make this sacrifice for our planet! For our children in fact and future generations too! We mummy's (and daddy's) need to be role models for our babies. As much as cd's have become an addiction, so should Bokashi. Right? Right!!

On top of that, in the long run you will be saving yourself some $$ too since you won't have to purchase additional chemicals to clean your toilets and sinks. Plus its free fertilizer for you greenfingered women and men out there. However, like is mentioned in the blog, in order for this to work well you will need some PATIENCE and a GOOD UNDERSTANDING of the process. And I guess some getting used to too but for motivation think of the GREATER GOOD.

Some other ways we can....

REDUCE. Reduce the use of plastice bags. The next time you go grocery shopping, buy a re-usable bag (such as provided by most major supermarkets) and stop/reduce using plastic bags.

RECYCLE. Recycle all recyclable waste. First, find the nearest recycling station. Have separate bins for plastic, paper, glass, etc. We all know where the organic (kitchen) waste goes. Set a garbage dump day and send all your waste to the recycling station. We all know how it goes.

SIMPLE. QUICK. EFFECTIVE. Together we can!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Christ Is The Head Of This Blog

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I'm not shouting "I'm clean livin'. I'm whispering "I was lost, Now I'm found and forgiven."

When I say ..."I am a Christian," I don't speak of this with pride. I'm confessing that I stumble, And need Christ to be my guide.

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I'm not trying to be strong. I'm professing that I'm weak, And need His strength to carry on.

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I'm not bragging of success. I'm admitting I have failed, And need God to clean my mess.

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I'm not claiming to be perfect. My flaws are far too visible, But God believes I am worth it.

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I still feel the sting of pain. I have my share of heartaches, So I call upon His name.

When I say ... "I am a Christian," I'm not holier than thou. I'm just a simple sinner Who received God's good grace somehow.

-Maya Angelou

I was blog hopping and stumbled upon a fellow Sabahan's blog and decided to copy this. It's a good reminder for me to practice humility in my daily life. I hope other Christians out there are inspired by this too.

Friday, May 02, 2008

I love these jammies!

Ala punya main angel!

Elil has a question. "Why is my chiu chiu not in my mouth?"

I got these jammies from a make-shift stall in PBD (Pusat Bandar Damansara) for RM15. Elil doesn't need jammies coz her daddy got her a lot from Mothercare when he was last in the UK. However, I could not resist these. So adorable. They're from Disney. And its Mickey, Mini, Donald and Daisy prints. Its zippered and has a little protective button cover so the zipper handle doesn't scratch baby. These are so much easier compared to the button-up sort especially if you have a wiggly-wiggly baby like my boo boo. The soles are brright pink and they are rubbery, non-slip. Even cooler, there is elastic at the ankles to keep the feet snug in its place. Yee! I got the 12 month size but its a little on the skinny side so its quite fitting on lil' Elil. Sexy starting young.

If you look closely you can see the elastic at the back part of the ankle and the pink rubbery sole.