Taking Care of Your Parents and Talking About Death

June 10, 2013 at 5:35 pm

The hubs was clearing the extra room in the house planning for his father to come and live with us. We had this conversation in the household, which I captured as best I could.

Me : Daddy is clearing the room so that yehyeh can live with us.
After a moment of silence.
Zara : Why must he stay with us? If he stayed with us, then we have to share our money with him, we’ll be poorer.
(We always tell the children that we’re not rich so that we cannot fulfill all their wants for toys/knick-knacks, stay in the best hotels when we go on holidays, or even send them to private or international school. The latter 2 are real though. But I don’t know why this came to her mind the first thing.)
Me : Ah Kong (Chinese: Maternal grandfather) too stays with Karen yiyi right?
Zara :Karen yiyi is not as poor as us. Why must yeh yeh stay with us and not his other children?
Me :We have to take care of him since no one is taking care of him. Now I’m worried, next time when I’m old, what will you do to me?
Zara : You are my mom, it’s different.
Me : Yehyeh is daddy’s daddy too.
(Both girls thought a bit.)
Zara : When we go shopping and all, do we need to bring him?
Me : Yeah.
Zara : He’ll slow us all down. (FIL doesn’t walk so well)…
Me : I can go with you girls first to see what you want to see. (should have told them they slowed us down too when they were younger but we still brought them shopping etc)
Zara : He’s daddy’s responsibility so daddy will handle him.
Zara (suddenly) : Who’s going to pay for his funeral?
Me : o.O” …….
Hubs : Daddy will ask everybody (his siblings) to pay.
Me : I wonder what will happen when it’s my turn. Wonder who’s going to pay for my coffin?
Zaria : You said you wanted to do that thing… burn your body right after you are dead?
Zara : Yeah. You said you wanted cremation. Why do you need to get a coffin when you will burn in later anyway?
Zaria : Yeah. Why do you need to cut trees to make the coffin?
Me : Then? I don’t even have a coffin to lay on? I’m just supposed to lie on my bed?
Zara : Yeah, then we’ll carry your body and put in you in the fire to burn.
Zaria : And I’ll pick 2 big bones later from the ashes to turn them into drum sticks.

Zaria’s May Chitter Chatter

May 12, 2013 at 11:26 am

We’d been really busy the last few weeks, with the Malaysia General Election (following real news on the internet, going to listen to ceramah or speeches held by political parties); the preparation for the girls’ exams, etc etc.

Still sorting out the photos taken during our holiday in Sri Lanka, and working on the posts.

Here is a post to capture some of the things that Zaria said in May.

Brought Zaria for music class and waited for a car to back his car from a parking spot so I could take it, and the fella took forever so I drove away cursing.
Me : Idiot!
Zaria: Well, why don’t you call him a jerk.
Me: Hey, watch what you say ok.
Zaria: What? Why can you usethese words and I cannot?
Me: Because I’m an adult you are a child.
Zaria: So?
Me: We are different.
Zaria: Are you saying I’m not human because we are not the same?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Looking at a poster in a lift of a crowd cheering (concert attendees I guess). Zaria asked me, “They are attending Ceramah (Bahasa Malaysia : lecture) is it?

I think we’d been watching too much political ceramah on youtube.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

At one of her tantrums, Zaria was taking the pencil and writing really hard on the dining table.
Hubs : Stop it yeah. You are damaging property.
Zaria still angry, glared at hubs and then started drawing on her own hands.
Hubs : So I don’t let you draw on the table, you draw on your hands yeah?
Zaria : So what? This is my property right?

Zaria’s Apology

February 27, 2013 at 3:27 pm

After 2 days of super bad temper, she wrote this.


Zaria : voiceMummy, this is not about my bad temper ok. Just to tell you something.
After reading,
Me : You know, love is not about writing.
Zara : Yeah, it’s about your action.
Me : You see, you scratched daddy until he has a scar. What happened if he got gangrene?
Zaria : How do I know, because I’m not a doctor.

I Don’t Want To Go To School

January 6, 2013 at 10:12 pm

Zaria has started Std 1, and attended 3 days of school last week. Is she enjoying school? I don’t think so.

As I was getting them to bed just now (Sunday night), we had this conversation. Lucky for me, Zara can help to reason with Zaria most of the time.

Zaria : I don’t like Chen Lao-she (Chinese : Teacher Chen).
Me : It’s school Zaria. I can’t change the teachers in school. For your swimming class or music class, I can change. But I cannot change your teachers in school.
Zaria : But I don’t like her.
Me : Give her a chance.
Zaria : What? I’d given her 3 chances wut. (i.e. 3 days of school)
Me : If you really don’t like her, maybe you should talk to the headmaster.
Zaria : I don’t know how to speak in Chinese.
Me : The headmaster understand English.
Zaria : ….

(after a while)
Zaria : I don’t want to go to school. Why do I need to go to school.
Zara : The spam (Zaria has a protruding forehead and we said it’s her spam) on your head is filled with ideas and thoughts.
Me : And knowledge
Zara : If you don’t go to school, your SPAM will be empty.
Zaria : Then why should I go to Chinese school? You should send me to English school
Zara : Mummy cannot afford it.
Zaria : Then work work work work work.
Me : You will go and work?
Zaria : No.. you.
Zara : If mummy worked like this, she won’t have time to play with you. Or bring you to the park. No one will read to you at night.
Zaria : Then daddy bring me..
Zara : Daddy too have to work and work to send you to English school.
Zaria : Then Auntie Minerva plays with me.
Zara : Auntie Minerva will be too busy cooking.
Zaria : Then you don’t send me to school
Zara : Let me tell you something. (getting serious) You know, the government wants everybody to go to school. If you don’t go to school you know what will happen?
Zaria : What?
Zara : Mummy and Daddy will go to jail. So, do you want your parents to get locked up in jail, or do you want to go to school?
Zaria : I thought I’ll go to jail.
Zara : No.. You parents. Not you.
Zaria : Then.. ask the lawyer to help. o.O” (thanks to Kidzania, she vaguely knows what a lawyer is)
Me : Ask the lawyer to help with what?
Zaria : Ask the lawyer to protect us.
Me : *laugh*I don’t think the lawyer can help us.
Zaria : Is the lawyer more powerful or the government?
Me : The government.
Zaria : *frustrated* Why is the government so bossy?


After her school orientation, she told me this, “I’m still Chinese deaf you know, because I don’t know what the teacher is saying “

2nd day of of school she refused to get dressed, telling us, “Why do I need to go to school when all I get to do is SIT??!!”

It’s going to be a long 2013.

Kids Say The Darndest Things – Zaria’s & Zaria’s October Chitter Chatter

November 27, 2012 at 1:39 am

Just capturing the girls’ October’s conversation (which I posted on FB), although it’s already end of November now.

While planning what to bake for Zara’s school carnival recently.
Me : Mei, what should I be baking today. For jiejie’s carnival?
Zaria : Chocolate chip cookies? (which I normally make with peacan)
Me : Yeah. Should I?
Zaria : Nope! What if somebody is allergic to nuts.. and chocolate?
(pretty right, but I didn’t think she would give me advice like this)

Before going to bed..
Zaria : Hmm.. I’m thinking about having kaya toast tomorrow for breakfast (she loves my kaya, just like Zara loves my pesto).
Me : You love my kaya right?
Zaria : Yeah.
Me : (just to tease her) What if mommy died and then who’s going to make kaya for you?
Zaria : I’ll hire Teacher Siew Pin’s (her kindy teacher) mother to make kaya for me.
o.O” (the other day she said she wanted a dog and she will hire a kakak to take care of the dog..)
Me : Zara, what about you? If mommy died already then who’s going to make pesto for you?
Zara : I’m going to use the iPad and google… hmm.. maybe not.. what if I don’t have an iPad… I’ll ask someone who knows how to make it to teach me.
Me : Why do you think you won’t have an iPad?
Zara : What if I don’t have money?
One always worry.. the other always optimistic.

Trying to shop on the net. Showed a couple of things I was interested in and asked Zaria if they were nice.
She took a glance at my shopping cart and said, “I’m not keen on stuff that are plain.” And then walked away.

While we were talking about birthdays..
Zaria : This year my birthday, I just want to invite jiejie (her only guest every year).
Me : Don’t you want to invite your BFFs?
Zaria : No. So I don’t have to waste time chi-chatting, and just spend all the time playing. o.O”
Zaria : And then nobody needs to sing Happy Birthday to me!
(but in November, she changed her mind, she even wanted to invite her teachers to her birthday celebration!)

For homework, Zaria had to colour a quarter of a cake, 3 quarter of a cake etc. As it was getting late (10pm), I told her to just colour them with one single colour.
Her reply? Slowly and smiling, “It’s my choice. You are not in my body. You are not my spirit.”.. and she continued to pick her colours, have her icing, the decorations, the flowers coloured in different colours for the quarters and of course carefully.

We were planning to buy mattresses and we shortlisted 2. 1 probably made in China, the other made in Malaysia. Zara chipped in, “Buy the one made in Malaysia. Barang Malaysia bermutu tinggi.” (Malaysian made products are of high quality)
I asked her how did she know that?
She added, “They taught us that in school.” o.O”

Over dinner Zaria just asked Daddy, “Daddy, why is your Chinese so bad, when your mother is Chinese?”

Kids Say the Darndest Things – Girls Oct Chitter Chatter

November 2, 2012 at 9:35 pm

Over dinner, Zara picked up a stray rice grain.
Zara : Do you know it looks like maggot?
Me : Every rice grain came from the sweat of the farmer, you know.
Zaria (put down her spoon) : What? I’m eating farmer’s sweat?
Me : It’s a figure of speech Mei. The farmer has to work very hard and under hot sun to plant rice.
Zara : So, farmers use a lot of sun block?
Me : I don’t think they want to spend money on sun block, because they are not so rich.
Zara : Maybe you should go and donate some sun block to the farmers.

Hubs had asked Zaria not to eat one of the jelly stick that Zara brought back from her school party, telling her all the artificial colouring/sweetener that it contained etc… She didn’t listen and had it anyway.
Zaria : Mummy, I think I’m going to die?
Me : Why?
Zaria : Because I ate the jelly stick.
Me : You ate it? I thought your daddy already told you not to eat it? Why didn’t you listen to him?
Zaria : Because I don’t want jiejie to be angry with me. After she came back and said, “why you didn’t eat the jelly I gave you? I don’t want to friend you anymore” (blame her sister some more o.O )
Me : Your jiejie won’t be angry.
Zaria : Now tell me, what am I supposed to do?
Me : Take some vegetable will help.
Zaria : It won’t help. I need a chemical stronger than that. If I die, who’s going to make you cards? Who’s going to make you laugh? I’m the joker in the house, who will do tricks which you’d never seen before?. … I want to live. If I die, I won’t be able to do the choral speaking in the school on Monday. My school will be very quiet I’m a chatter box in school. What I take to get rid of the poison?
….. she went on and on…..
And then she drew this.

Zaria's writing

And you would think she would not eat any more of the jelly? The following day, she told me, “I think eating a little will not make me die” Before I could say anything, I saw her taking a small bite from another stick of Jelly, and then thew the remainder in the bin. o.O”

Homeschooling Zaria?

July 30, 2012 at 5:19 pm

Conversation in the car yesterday when we talked about confirming Zaria’s placing in Zara’s school.

Me : So mei, next year you are going to jiejie’s school, ok?
Zaria : No. I don’t want to go to jiejie’s school. Because there’s bees and rotan (Malay : Cane) in her school. I want to go to English school (Zara spotted bees in her school and told Zaria about it)
Me : We cannot afford English school. So you either go Chinese school or Malay school. So which one do you want? Chinese or Malay?
Zaria : English
Me : You can only choose Malay or Chinese?
Zaria : English
Me : But we don’t have money to send you to English school. So how? You want to stop going to school?
Zaria : No. Then I want to be in home school.
Me : Who’s going to teach you?
Zaria : You.
Me : But I’m so fierce. You want me to teach you?
Zaria : Daddy.. Daddy then.
Dad : But daddy sometimes not around.
Zaria : Daddy teach(es) me when Daddy is home. When he’s not home, mummy teach(es) me.
(she has it all planned out).

Later I asked her.
Me : Do you know what is home school?
Zaria : A house that gives you homework.

Not sure if this one will reject Chinese school next year. Sigh.

I Need To Speak To Najib

July 23, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Oh no, this is not a political post. Read on.

Zara just finished her exams recently. This round, as I was not well for a couple of days, she was a bit slack in her revision (because I’m not there to go through stuff with her).

She told me her class teacher mentioned that she didn’t do as well this round, so I gave her a lecture.

Me : Yada yada yada. Next time if you don’t do your own revision when I asked you to, fine! If you did badly in your exams, I’m going to throw your books away in the dustbin. Since you don’t want to study, then no need to study. Can go sweep the street when you are older. Yada yada yada.
Zara : (angry) If you want to throw my books away in the dustbin, go and throw then. After that, you need to speak to Najib and explain to him everything.
Zaria : Who is Najib, mummy? Hehe, how come his name is so funny.
Me : (still o.O”) Najib is our prime minister.
(recovered) So, why do I need to speak to Najib? What has he got to do with your studies?
Zara : My teacher says the books are given to us by Najib, so if we don’t take care of them, we’ll have to explain to Najib.

Najib will be very busy if he has to get involved in these.

My Age and When She Becomes A Mom

June 27, 2012 at 9:04 pm

We had this conversation the other day when Zaria asked me how old I was.
Zaria : How old are you mummy?
Me : Me? 15.
Zaria : (suspicious) The number is so little.
Me : Ya. Because I’m not that old really.
Zaria : (a little convinced) Oh…
….. then she thought for a while.
Zaria : (a bit worried) So when you are 18, you are going to leave us and go to college?
Zara : Mommy is just pulling your legs. How can she be so young!
Awww.. when they are older, they become less gullible.

Over dinner on Sunday.
Zaria : I don’t like fried bee hoon. BUEK.. so horrible… BUEK.(always exaggerating)
Me : If you don’t like fried bee hoon, you can have a dumpling. Your choice.
Zaria : I don’t like dumpling too! I don’t want to eat dinner. I want to drink milo.
Me : (not giving in) If you don’t finish your beehoon, nobody is allowed to make you milo or give you milk, and you cannot have any snacks after that. Anybody give you snacks or make you a drink, I’m going to cane that person! And if you got so hungry in the night and start shivering, I won’t give you anything to eat as well, you’ll have to wait till tomorrow breakfast! So your choice. Eat your dinner or go hungry for the rest of the day.
Zaria : (started eating reluctantly) Next time if I was (were) a mummy, I’m going to let my children eat anything they want. I won’t say (change her voice to higher pitch) YOU MUST EAT THIS… YOU MUST EAT THAT…..
So lets see what she will do next time when she becomes a mom.
And she did ‘force’ herself to finish her dinner and then went on and had all the other snacks she wanted.

Kids Say The Darndest Things – Zaria May’s Chitter Chatter

May 31, 2012 at 11:26 pm

These are the things she said in May that raised my eye brow, or put a smile to my face (although I have to pretend I’m not amused).

Zaria made a mother’s day card for me but she can’t recall where she’s placed it.
Asked her to search.
She said can’t find (without moving her butt).
Me : Go help mommy find please.
Zaria : *moved her butt reluctantly* Find until I become an old lady is it?

About cars and money.
Zaria : I like your car more than Ah-Gu’s car (BMW)
Me : Why?
Zaria : B’cos your car is a bit more simple than Ah Gu, and you can save money.
Me : Save money for what?
Zaria : For your wedding dress.
Me : *laughed* But I’m already married.
Zaria : Then maybe save money for Zaria’s shop then. (she’s always very jealous of Zara having so many shops named after her, and found in all big shopping malls).

Zaria : Why is Ah Gu so rich?
Me : You ask him next time you see him
Zaria : Maybe he studied very hard when he was young
Me : Maybe
Zaria : And he work very hard when he’s older
Me : What about mummy? Mummy doesn’t work hard? How come I’m not rich?
Zaria : You.. you spend time playing with Bug Village (iPad game which I checked 4 times daily) only.

Zaria : Next time when I’m older.. I’ll buy a BMW.
Me : Oh.. will you give me a ride in your BMW?
Zaria : By then, you are dead already. o.O”
Me : I won’t be dead so early.
Zaria :Then you’ll be an old nenek (granny)? Yah.. I can drive you.. o.O”

On a day where her Yamaha class was cancelled.
Zaria : Why is my class cancelled.
Me : Ms Tan has to take a day of holiday
Zaria : Why does she want to take a holiday?
Me : (simply pick a reason) Maybe her daughter is having exams, so she needs to do revision with her?
Zaria : Oh.. you mean now she’s at home shouting at her daughter?
(revision == mom shouting at daughter… now you know how it’s like during Zara’s revision) o.O”

Zaria : I love you mum
Me : I love you too Zaria
Zaria : If you love me, why you scold me, pinch me, smack me and give me chili to eat then? Huh?

On the way home from school.
Me : Zaria, what songs did you sing in Parent’s Day last year?
Zaria : I cannot remember.
Me : I cannot remember too.
Zaria : I know, you can go to google, and then type Zaria, and then you’ll get the answer…. Wait, not Zaria. Because if you type Zaria, then all the things about other Zaria will come out. You have to type Zaria Low, then you’ll find the answer about me.

Zaria before playing the iPad (she likes watching those MTV with skimpily dressed dancers/singers)
Zaria : No sexy shows right?
Me : Yes.
Zaria : Then why did God create Lady Gaga? o.O”

The diarrhea bout I had early this month has made me lost some weight, so I could squeeze into the dress that I wore as my friend’s bride’s maid.
Me : Do I look nice? I wore this as Auntie Ping Ping’s bride’s maid.
Zara : You looked puffed up now. o.O”
Zaria : You mean you were Auntie Ping Ping’s maid? Her kakak? Cleaning all the mess after her wedding? (maid to her is domestic helper) o.O”

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