Monday, January 30, 2017

Southern most tip of Canada

This photo or the location had puzzled me very much. In 1975, when I first went to Canada, Windsor in particular, I went to this beach, at the lake. I was given to understand that this was the Southern most tip of Canada, and the name was something like Pt S_________.

Now when I google, and Canadian fellow Bloggers tell me that it is The most southerly part of Canada is Middle Island. It is located in Lake Erie, just 100 meters from the Canada-US Border, between Pelee Island, Canada, and Sandusky, USA.

Read more:

Before I tick off my bucket list, or before I kick the bucket, I really would like to know.

Do any one of you know and solve my puzzle?

Our World Tuesday Graphic

Student days. University of Windsor

In 1976, I was the secretary of the Malaysian Indonesian and Singapore
  student's association of Windsor University In Canada. Every year, 
on International Day, we had a big event and countries provided ethnic food 
and an item. The previous year, we did a Candle dance . Though I had never 
danced this before, I had to, because there were very few girls, and as 
the assistant liaison officer, I was made to do it. We didn't dance well, 
but the lights made it very  lovely to watch.
WE chose to sing that year. We sang the "Lenggang Lenggang Kangkung".
 I did not know Malay and neither did most of us. The tune was catchy, 
and our international guests LOL with our  "Lenggang Lenggang Kangkung".

I wish we had some one explain to us and our audience. The tune 
and the "Lenggang Lenggang Kangkung" never left me.

This You-tube dance is probably how we would have danced and sang. It is not professional, just look at the beautiful costume. They even got the audience to dance.

(Indonesian Folk Song)
 "It is very popular with children and adults alike. The topic is 
about a water spinach which is a favorite dish of the people in 
Southeast Asian countries…

Kangkung is a semi aquatic plant that grows on the river banks 

or lakes in many countries in South-east Asia, of which Indonesia 
is the largest since it consists of 17,000 islands and a population 
of 240 million. It is called the Ipomoea Aquatica, or Water Spinach 
and also known as Water Morning Glory, because it has flowers 
that are similar to the morning glory in shape and color.

The phrase 'Lenggang kangkung' has also the meaning of being 

leisurely and being idle or walking in a slow and peaceful gait."

I asked Sammy if the phrase, "Lenggang Lenggang Kangkung"

 is describing a person strolling along or is it describing the water 
spinach plant swaying.

 He wrote, "It is describing both, and if you want to be exact, 

you must mention the way the Kangkung, or water spinach
 with its long floating stem swaying gently and in a leisurely 
way on the rivers or lakes, gently swaying 
s they are blown by the wind or moved by the 
current underneath.

The word 'lenggang kangkung' literally refers to a person

 who strolls leisurely and without a single care, as if he or 
she owns eternity. This is a description of the peaceful 
and serene life in the beautiful life in the villages of Indonesia."


People dance while swaying their hips to this song. 
Lenggang Lenggang Kangkung

1. Lenggang lenggang kangkung, Kangkung di tepi kali 2x
Begitulah kalau punya kekasih yang cantik sekali. 2x

2. Lenggang lenggang kangkung. Kangkung membawa untung. 2x
Beginilah nasib kalau punya kekasih yang jauh dimata. 2x

3. Lenggang lenggang kangkung. Kangkung di rawa-rawa 2x
Begitulah kalau punya kekasih yang suka cemburu. 2x

4. Lenggang lenggang kangkung. Kangkung membawa untung. 2x
Begini nasib kalau punya kekasih jauh dimata. 2x

Folk Song  (English) Carefree Kangkung

1. Carefree in a leisurely way, kangkung* by the river side. 2x
That's just my real fate for having a sweetheart who is very pretty. 2x

2. Carefree in a leisurely way, kangkung which brings me luck, 2x
That's my real fate for having a lover so far away. 2x

3. Carefree in a leisurely way, kangkung on the paddy fields, 2x
That's just my real fate, for having a lover that is so jealous. 2x

4. Carefree in a leisurely way, kangkung growing in the swamps, 2x
That's just my real fate, for having a lover that's so far away. 2x

LENGGANG KANGKUNG (The Quests' version) 

Live performance instrumental by The Quests, 
at downtown Kota Kinabalu on City's Day on 11th Feb., 2012.
This is an Indonesian folk song popularized by a Singaporean band, The Quests as an instrumental hits in the 60's.The Quests, a very popular band from Singapore in the 60's.

Lagunaria Friday flower

Lagunaria is a monotypic genus in the family Malvaceae. It is an Australian plant endemic to Lord Howe Island, Norfolk Island and parts of coastal Queensland. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Weet-Bix Better-Brekkie Survey

Kiwi Kids Lacking in Basic Life Skills - Weet-Bix Better-Brekkie Survey

By Fleur Revell
26 January 2017
How good are your children at using their mobile device, accessing an online movie clip or posting cute selfies on Snapchat? What about making their own beds, or creating a wholesome breakfast for a great start to the day, or packing themselves a lunchbox that contains all the nutrition they need for a busy day at school?

A recent survey by Weet-Bix Better Brekkie revealed eight in ten (78%) children aged 5-7 years could operate a cell phone and a further nine in ten (89%) have mastered a TV remote, but less than a third (29%) of this age group make their own lunch.

Less than half (49%) of young Kiwi children usually eat a nutritious breakfast seven days a week; however as children grow older, the figures get worse. Just one-third of children between the ages of 13 year and 15 years are eating breakfast in the mornings every day, and half of this age group skip breakfast altogether once a week.

The figures are a wake-up call for parents and professionals alike. Sanitarium has developed the Weet-Bix Better Brekkie initiative, in which popular Kiwi chef Michael Van de Elzen creates easy, delicious and nutritious breakfasts designed to inspire adults and children alike to pile into a breakfast with a punch, and prep a lunch like a pro.

“It’s not that hard to create a really awesome and filling breakfast in minutes that the kids will love,” says Michael, who, as a dad to two young girls, understands all too well how hard it can be to juggle the balance of feeding children well with a busy schedule.

“A good breakfast doesn't need to take ages to prepare, or create stress in the mornings. Getting the children involved and teaching them to do simple tasks like packing a good lunchbox doesn't just take the pressure off parents - it teaches the kids basic skills they’ll use for the rest of their lives.”

The results of the Sanitarium Better Brekkie survey have caused concern, not just among parents who want their children to learn about healthy eating, but by health professionals who believe teaching kids household tasks like getting involved with simple chores like cooking and meal preparation is essential to children's development.

“Children these days are so invested in social media and the advances of technology, they`ve forgotten how to do the simple things,” says mum of four and psychologist Sara Chatwin.

“By allowing children to take part and get involved with simple household chores and prepping easy meals, you’re ensuring your children have some of the basic skills. It`s all very well taking over [as a parent] to get the job done quickly and well, but this detracts from children`s simple skill knowledge and learning.”

Despite a whopping 99% of parents believing that learning to make your own meals is a vital life skill, the Sanitarium Better Brekkie survey results highlighted parents’ reluctance to allow their children to make their own breakfast, either because they didn't have time to clean up the mess, or because the morning rush is simply too stressful to include watching over the children in the kitchen or teaching them how to cook in such a time-pressured environment. A third (30%) of parents said they were concerned if they didn’t take matters into their own hands, the children would skip breakfast altogether, or choose an unhealthy option.

The survey was carried out by Sanitarium in conjunction with the company’s Better Brekkie programme and was designed to investigate Kiwi attitudes to breakfast, according to the company’s marketing manager, Jessica Manihera.

“I know in my own household that it's always a bit of a rush in the morning, but I also know it's important to prioritise a good breakfast for the kids as it sets them up for the day. I’m also mindful of how important it is for us as parents to encourage our children to make their own breakfasts and create good habits around food which will last them a lifetime,” says Manihera.

For more information see

Written on behalf of Sanitarium by Impact PR

an non alcoholic park

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Chrysanthemums are among my favourite flowers. I felt in love with them when I saw them in Auckland New Zealand.

The Buddhist and Chinese ancestor worshippers use this flower to worship their Gods. On the first and fifteen of the Lunar month, they would buy bunches to do their obeisance or "Bai Shin". They are also funeral flowers. They take them to the graveyard. I didn't know this because I grew up in a Roman catholic family and we didn't "Bai Sin".

When I buy Chrysantehemums in Singapore, the florist asked why I buy them when it wasn't the first or the fifteenth. They asked if I have lost a loved one. I tell them, I just love the Chrysanthemums, I don't "Bai Shin."

Coincidentally, when my baby Andrew died, a very good friend gave me a pot of Chrysanthemums. G said she didn't want to give me a bunch of flowers since I had requested," No flowers." Later, when the flowers were gone, she told me that I could grow it in the garden. It thrived and flowered well. It gave me a mixed feeling of my thoughtful friend G, and it also gave me feelings of how much I missed Andrew.

curry with a cause

A pot of Curry Chicken with Saffron Rice cooked  for charity.
For 4 adults

My curry leaf tree produced fragrant leaves. Curry leaves are ingredients for cooking curry and other South East Asian food. Friends came from far and near. It became a communal tree. When I left Singapore for NZ, my downstairs neighbour wanted to own it. I said yes, but my friends should be allowed to pluck from it. 6 years later, I went back to visit. It was a sorry sight. The tree missed his mummy (me) and her green thumb. The neighbour was sheepish when she told me the tree went downhill shortly after I left.

Happy Australia Day. Kookaburra

I was in a park in Brisbane, heard some birds sing and, looked up the tree, and saw the Kookaburras.

Happy Australia to my family in Australia.

Marion Sinclair wrote this Australian Icon and classic song, Kookaburra sits in the old Gum tree. She wrote it in 1934 for a girl guide music competition. Half a century ago, my teacher taught me to sing this song in Methodist school, Sibu. I was singing in rounds and had no idea why the king was singing in the tree, or up the tree.

Back then, there were no copyright infringement, and the song was sung by the girl guides and some schools like mine in Borneo to the mountains of America. I, LOL, when I heard about the legal spat that The Down Under men at work were sued by Larrikin that they stole their song.

I took these photos when I was in Brisbane, Australia. I was attracted by the laughing of the bird. I looked up the gum tree and saw the two kookaburras.

When I was in Primary 1, my teacher taught me this song.
Kookaburra sits in the old Gum tree.
Some of my siblings have chosen to live in Australia. 
Australia is bitter sweet to me,
She claimed my mother's life while she was 60.

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Merry, merry king of the bush is he
Laugh, Kookaburra! Laugh, Kookaburra!
Gay your life must be

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Eating all the gum drops he can see
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
Leave some there for me

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree
Counting all the monkeys he can see
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
That's not a monkey that's me

Kookaburra sits on a rusty nail
Gets a boo-boo in his tail
Cry, Kookaburra! Cry, kookaburra!
Oh how life can be

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Auckland University and The Playgroup Club.

My 9th book is now circulated in my Alma Mater. When I was studying at the Old Arts building and Choral Hall, I probably never thought of writing books, needless to say I would find my books in the library.

My rainbow child.

My Rainbow child

The weather is hotting up, my rainbow  child is back at the beach, getting very tan.

I learn for the first time the term Rainbow babies from a fellow bereaved mum, Caterine from Australia.

Rainbow babies are conceived after the lost of a baby.

"Rainbow Babies" are the understanding that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of the storm. When a rainbow

appears, it does not mean that the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with its aftermath. What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and the clouds. Storm clouds may still loom over but the rainbow provides a counterbalance of color, energy, and much needed hope.

Many mums for various reasons choose not tohave rainbow babies, and many well meaning people tell them, " You will be alright, you can soon have another."

For me, my rainbow baby came 7 years after Andrew died. I had not planned for him. I went through hell during my pregancy because I was worried I would have a repeat of Andrew.

Flowers: Hydrangea

I have lots of stories about the hydrangea. In the house when Andrew was born, women came to help themselves with the hydrangea. In another house, my neighbour chopped off the whole hedge. He said, he didn't want burglars hide beside the hedge.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

B for bag

My sister Grace made this bag. It is a cake.

I have an anecdote of a metallic clutch bag. In 1990, my husband got a job lecturing in the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. Before we left New Zealand, my girl friend B. said, "Ann, you will be an important wife and will be going to dinner parties, so let's go and buy you a good Oroton bag."

So off we went, I bought a silver metallic bag. In the sixteen years I was there, I have never been invited to an important dinner party, even though he became an associate professor. In reality, they didn't invite wives.

When I came back to New Zealand, I gave the bag to Deborah. Hopefully she will get to attend important dinner parties. LOL

Monday, January 16, 2017

Adopt A Star

Some bereaved parents adopt a star to the memory of their deceased child.

Adopt A Star

Wrap up an out-of-this-world gift and give your loved one a star!

Do you know someone who deserves a special gift or an occasion that should be honoured with a star? We invite you to adopt-a-star!

Adopting a Star makes a really special gift and is a wonderful way to honour an occasion. Adopt your own star, and you’ll get a personalised certificate dedicating the selected star to a nominated person or event, a star chart to show you where to find the star, some background information on the star’s constellation, and a ticket to see a show at Stardome.
For $60, you will receive a special pack with the dedicating the selected star.
Each Adopt-a-Star pack contains:
  • A presentation certificate (suitable for framing) dedicating the selected star to a nominated person or event.
  • A star chart showing where to find the star in the night sky.
  • Background information on the star’s constellation.
  • One Adult Pass (or two Child Passes) to a planetarium show at Stardome.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Common chicory

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Frisee is also marketed under the name Curly endive and in France as chicorée Frisée.

Roquet French, in english called rocket, italian Aragula, I grow both italian chicorino with the blue flowers and French roquet with the white flowers above. both are very attractive. I like this concept, first the salads and then the pleasure of the flowers. Then seed again and the process returns, Nature is unbeatable!

Common chicory is also known as blue daisy, blue dandelion, blue sailors, blue weed, bunk, coffeeweed, cornflower, hendibeh, horseweed, ragged sailors, succory, wild bachelor's buttons, and wild endive.[

knitting for my children

 I crash gated on a group of about ten ladies in the MABC craft group. I was meeting my friend C for another meeting, but got in too late because I forgot where I placed my sets of knitting needles and I forgot what size wool and needles I needed to make winter slippers.

I sort of budged into the lounge with empty hands and the ladies were wondering why i was there. Any way, I sat beside R, remember the lady I told you who had married for 61 years? She was very busy "knit purl knit purl."

R told me that she was knitting baby jackets for the leprosy mission. As a volunteer, she had knitted 150 of those. 150???? Ka Pai good job R.

I told her I knitted two of those, and have not knitted any since. We chatted, she said, may be I will when I become a grand mother. I flipped through her folder and found the pattern I used almost 25 years ago. I thought they were called scallops pattern but these ladies said it was feather something.

D, my 25 year old kept the pattern and I think one set of the pink jacket. I dug out the old photos. Was I clever? I made sets of matching jackets, leggings, booties, bonnets and beanies.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Us and Stardome
We have our sweet story about the Stardome. Back almost forty years ago shortly after we were married. We didn't have children or nappies to worry about. We used to go around Auckland driving our Ford Escort. We were at the Stardome one evening, and we met this Japanese lady with her two pre-teen kids.
We said hi, and she thought we were Japanese.  My grand dad would have been proud of my hospitality and we struck up a conversation. They were very trusting when we offered to take them round Auckland. She was a plastic surgeon and was holidaying with her kids. We took them places that the tour  guides would not normally take tourists to.
The next evening, I cooked her dinner of pan fried mullet, steamed rice and veg. She was so pleased as they were tired of Kiwi food. When we took them back to their hotel, she told us to wait at the lobby
She came down with two beautiful dresses, a Japanese silk make-up bag, and two bangles. The dresses are long gone, but I can still remember them and the remarks of my Japanese dresses. One of the bangle was very unusual, it had some twenty "bangs" join together at the ends. The gold colouring had gone, and I asked a jeweller in Malaysia if he could coat it in gold for it. It proved too expensive, and he said, he won't recommend it.
I still keep them, as a token of our friendship. I have forgotten her face, but I guess she would remember the time when she met this couple who she said," very handsome couple who have no need of her professional services as a plastic surgeon." May be her son and daughter might come back to visit the Stardome and recollect the time they had pan fried mullet in our little apartment.

The other day, my daughter rummaged through my trinkets and found a neck version of the bracelet. I told her this story, and how I replaced the original bracelets had the plating gone.

angel's trumpets, friday flowers

Will some one please confirm this is Angel trumpet, or if it is not, what is it?

When I took the photo, I was sure it was, but looking at it again, I am not sure.
Brugmansia is a genus of seven species of flowering plants in the family Solanaceae. Their large, fragrant flowers give them their common name of angel's trumpets,

Trumpet flower, Friday flowers  My archive blog

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Chinese Arugula flowers 

 Arugula rocket salad.  These are Chinese ones given by my student. They have pretty purple flowers.  Could be endives
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Image may contain: plant, nature and outdoor

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Friday floral: Rapheolepis 

Not sure if the fruits are made into Haw flakes that we know,

Haw flakes, shānzhābǐng (Chinese: 山楂餅) are Chinese sweets made from the fruit of the Chinese hawthorn. The dark pink candy is usually formed into discs two millimeter thick, and packaged in cylindrical stacks with label art resemblance of Chinese fireworks.

Rhaphiolepis indica, the Indian hawthorn, India hawthorn or Hong Kong hawthorn, is an evergreen shrub in the family Rosaceae.   Found at   western springs.


Friday, January 6, 2017

loving the earth

As Waitangi day approaches, I recall 2009 when I had the most meaningful celebration with a difference. Teaching people to be zero waste.

Zero-waste Management Strategy:
Here's the collection of the bags by some of the volunteers, including a very young boy. Ka Pai to him. They had to lug the heavy bags to the quad bikes as runners.
The back-end" of the system is the worst of the jobs. Resource Recovery Centre Manager, Chris with some volunteers have the awful job of additionl sorting of bagged waste. When we finished our part at our stations, we helped them out. We had to sort out the three groups of rubbish, and by the time I left at 7.45pm, they were still working.
What I admire about the Maoris is their ability to joke. One uncle I didn't get his name asked if I got enough of being a Maori. I told him I was just very tired with the sun getting into my head. He joked that he had to do this every day, and he should be called a garbatologist. Another joked that we should have diplomas. Some one joked that disposible nappies should be banned.
I did not meet Ivy who liaised with the stall holders, and Te Hira (Chiefy) who sets waste stations with Ngarimu and monitors the effectiveness of the waste plan.
The volunteers are the silent brigades that made the festival a pleasant one for the festival goers. I have been to many countries, and usually at the end of the day, there is a mountain of rubbish. The Orakei park was very clean, free of rubbish at the end of the festival.
Ka Pai to Ngarimu, Te Hira, Chris, and Ivy for all their planning and logistics. Ka Pai to all the volunteers. Ka Pai to everyone in the Marae for letting me stay in the marae. Something I always wanted to do, but never got the chance.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

My mum's Apai and Indai, foster dad and mum

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  Grand Miring ceremonies are performed during the Gawai Dayak. In 2012, I was invited to a visit to a longhouse in Bintangnor. We had Ling Kie King representing us for the ceremony. 

The Chans and the Kongs go back a long way with the Ibans.

In 1907, My Paternal grandfather arrived in Borneo in Sibu where he had contact with the Ibans.

What is unknown to many people, my mother Kong Wah Kiew had an  Apai and an Indai. (Apai is for father and Indai is for mother.) Mother must have been the first Chinese child to be born there. As with the Chinese customs of KAI/Fostering a child, my Mum went through a big ceremony where the head man of the long house would adopt her, and they promised to take care of the clan. The clan and the Ibans remain on good term.

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Friday flower:Ivy-leaved toadflax (Cymbalaria muralis) 

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 Image may contain: plant, outdoor and nature
Ivy-leaved toadflax (Cymbalaria muralis)

It spreads quickly, growing up to 5 cm (2.0 in) tall – it commonly grows in rock and wall crevices, and along footpaths. The leaves are evergreen, rounded to heart-shaped, 2.5 to 5 cm (1.0 to 2.0 in) long and wide, 3–7-lobed, alternating on thin stems. The flowers are very small, similar in shape to snapdragon flowers.[4]


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

ABC Wed letter Z

I love the zoo, mainly because I grew up without one.  In a rare occurrence, twin giraffes were born at Auckland Zoo on 3 Jan, though sadly one calf had to be put down. According to Auckland Zoo, only about 30 cases of giraffe twins have been reported worldwide. Here is 7-year-old giraffe mum Kiraka with her new female calf.