Sunday, July 27, 2014

An anxious Hari Raya :(

A few days ago, we took Arif for a scheduled cranial ultrasound. These types of ultrasounds are routine for preemie babies, as they help detect abnormalities in the brain. Unfortunately, Arif's scan detected a few problems and he was immediately admitted for tests.

First, the saw a cyst in his brain, which is a form of scarring as a result of the Grade II Intraventricular hemorrhage that he suffered at birth. They also noted that the two hemispheres of his brain was asymmetrical. These conditions may or may not have long term effects on his development, only time will tell. 

The thing that had the doctors alarmed, however, was the presence of what they believe is a sort of liquid in the layers outside his brain. Whether the liquid is cerebrospinal fluid or blood, they cannot tell from the ultrasound. As you can imagine, my husband and I were in absolute shock and horror.

They ran an eye test on him and thankfully it showed that his eyes were normal and that there was no bleeding behind his eyes. They ran a blood test twice and noted that most of the tests came back showing that nothing was alarming. I was told the other blood tests will take longer to complete. I did not hear results of his urine tests, but I think they are either fine or the results are pending.

The doctors also noted that Arif was healthy, his head circumference did not increase during his stay and its growth since birth was consistent and normal, and he had no fever or seizures. We explained to the doctors that he has been a calm and happy baby since the day we brought him back from the NICU.

As there didn't seem to be anything wrong with Arif and there was nothing else they could do for him at the moment, they discharged him after a two-night stay. We are to bring him back to the hospital on the third day of Hari Raya to be sedated, so that they can run an MRI scan on him on Thursday morning.

We pray that the scan will show that nothing is wrong with Arif. This is a difficult and challenging time for me and my husband, but we have faith that we will get through this and it will be ok. Arif has been through and survived so much already, he is my little amazing fighter.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Herbed Fried Chicken made healthier with Scott Calorie Light

During the holy month of Ramadan, I like to cook for iftar because frankly, it's better to eat home-cooked food, plus it saves money. Don't get me wrong, Ramadan bazaars can be fun (although sometimes the food can be disappointing), but they can also burn a big hole in your pocket! One of the dishes that I like to prepare for iftar, is ayam goreng berempah or herbed fried chicken. It was one of my favourites when I was growing up and my mum has taught me the recipe. Take a look... yummm!

Making it is simple, it's all in the marinade. The ingredients for a basic herbed chicken marinade are...

Red onion, lemongrass, ginger, garlic and fresh turmeric. 

Coriander seeds
What I love about this marinade is, you can tweak it by adding extra ingredients, like coriander seeds (above), chillies, galangal, torn kaffir limes leaves or a dollop of dark soy sauce. You are free to experiment and give it a flavourful twist each time you make it.

The next step is to put all the ingredients into a blender with a bit of water, then blend it to a paste. 

Then, pour the blended ingredients over your prepped and cleaned chicken and add salt to taste. Marinade the chicken for at least 30 minutes, although a few hours or overnight would be best.

Once marinated, deep fry the chicken until it turns golden brown. Get ready for some seriously yummy smells!


Last, but not least, drain away all the excess oil from the chicken with Scott Calorie Light Premium Towels. This will help prevent the chicken from becoming soggy and, best of all, it will help you cut down on calories!

Yup, you read right. The brand-new Scott Calorie Light Premium Towel is specially designed for superior oil absorbency, reducing your calorie intake by up to 25%!

Now you can enjoy your favourite fried foods with fewer calories! Just use 3 sheets of Scott Calorie Light kitchen towels to soak up the excess oil.

(Bottom right, from L-R) From Kimberly-Clark Malaysia, Danny Tan, Managing Director, Emily Chong, Marketing Manager, Soo Woon Yee, Marketing Director, and Chef Florence Tan at the launch of Scott® Calorie Light.

If you're interested to try out the Scott Calorie Light Premium Towel, it's available at major supermarkets, hypermarkets, mini markets and provision stores nationwide for RM6.20 for 2-roll and RM14.90 for 6-roll packs (West Malaysia).

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

It's the moment of TOOTH

Okay, before I begin my story, let me offer a word of advice to everyone out there. If you're experiencing a toothache or any kind of problem with your teeth or gums, go to the dentist as quickly as you can - DO NOT DELAY! I say this from experience. In the past few years, I've ignored far too many nagging issues with my teeth and gums due to being too busy and hesitant about visiting the dentist, and now... I'm paying for it.

After my preeclampsia and hospital ordeal and now that Arif is home and things have settled down a bit, I decided that I had to have my teeth looked at. My husband found a dentist in PJ New Town and I booked an appointment.

During my first consultation, there was certainly no sugar coating it - I have quite a few major problems with my teeth and they must be corrected one by one. Simply put, I need scaling, root canals, dental crowns and extractions... phew!

This means I'll be visiting the dentist's once a week for quite some time. Plus, there will be a considerable "cavity" in my purse afterwards. But hey, like I said earlier, I have to "pay" for neglecting my pearly whites. I've had three appointments so far, and here's what I've had done.

More after the jump...

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