Messages les plus consultés

samedi 28 février 2009

This one is for Shrek

They say that the best medecine is laughter and I would tend to agree. Hence I bring you my outrageously self-depreciating gaffe. I washed a toy electronic steering wheel with water and it went wonky and began playing music by itself until we removed the batteries. Needless to say Shrek had a good laugh at my expense. I am glad I can be of service and spontaneously ignite such a round of hearty laugh. Being ridiculed is good as a mood lightener sometime!
You would know all about this wouldn't you Shrek?

I know now it is much better and wiser to wipe it with a wet cloth or sponge and be done with it.

Lil hurricane

I have a lively and hyperactive hurricane that goes by the seemingly innocuous name of Baby Mini M. He loves wreaking havoc everywhere he goes. He cannot help himself as he naughtily and surreptitiously empty my kitchen cupboards, rearranging the contents and rendering it impossible to trace the missing items for he has hid cans..etc God knows where. He rather unintentionally but proudly mess up the living room and our study/bureau/storage room. Moreover he continuously whirls and swirls leaving a trail of litter and rubbish in his wake. He does a fantastic job of sabotaging and wrecking whatever motivated and concerted efforts I put into house keeping

He makes my life just that little bit more difficult as I futilely tidy and clean up after him. All the while he maintains that mischievous smirk on his face. He is still adorable even when he exhausts me so... I just wish he would be a bit more considerate... sigh sigh

He is little in size but big on damage. I think his new nickname should be Lil Tassie Cyclonic Devil. It fits him like a glove. I do hope he does improve with age and turn out surprisingly angelic. Yeah right I am daydreaming as I am oft inclined to do.

jeudi 26 février 2009

Moy is the master of disorder

My long backlog of arts and crafts projects I would like to do with my kids are piling up.

There is a Dora play-doh castle which has to be built.

There is play dough that I can fabricate and they in turn create a wondrous number of objects as their flight of fancy partake.

There is a wooden Robin Hood castle that we can build together as well as Lego structures and a farm...

There are countless mugs and numerous other objects waiting to be painted.

Alas there is a burgeoning abundance of projects that I have put on hold for two reasons: my fatigue and more importantly Baby Mini M's interference each and every time I actually want to initiate any task.

I also have difficulty teaching Petit Suisse because Baby Mini M is always stirring and decides that the perfect time to climb onto my lap is whenever I am in the middle of partaking in an activity: educational or crafty.

Baby M is still in that impossible age when he does not play individually but cannot partake in complicated arts and crafts nor engage in conversation or pay attention long enough to get into any activity wholeheartedly. He plays with toys for five minutes and gets readily bored. It does get better when he gets to the stage where I can involve him in activities and teach him language and mathematics.

I do feel slightly guilty for not being able to juggle all three kids without resorting to the easy option of allowing them the pleasure of vegetating like a couch potato..I attempt to educate them but with Baby M ever so young and always on the verge of interrupting and disrupting/destroying whatever we are doing (not deliberately) because he is simply too young and unknowing to realise and my nagging, constant and ever so present pelvic floor/bassin pain there are days where I opt for the easy way and let the kids play a lil on the Wii or the computer or let them watch a DVD which normally is off limits.


All three children have had chicken pox save the yet to be born Ben. The last one being Baby M about 6 weeks ago, Petit Suisse contracted the nasty but innocuous disease in Sydney at the beginning of 2007 but didn't have an explosion like lil Miss N as she had much more exposure from her brother and I was afraid of the lil Poxy creature that used to be my daughter but I could barely recognise as she was ravaged by explosive poxy pimples from head to toe. Sharing is caring... I am recording because one's memory tends to be unreliable with age and I will be asked one day by one of my offsprings if they have in fact been infected with the chicken pox.

So Petit Suisse, lil Miss N and Baby M: you have all been graced by the generous Pox.

Alarm clocks

I do not have to buy alarm clocks because I already have three highly reliable personal alarm clocks that do not require battery change ever.

Each morning without fail Petit Suisse and lil Miss N awake from their slumber and join me in bed and I instinctively know that it is 7.30am . They are cute like that saving me from having to spend needlessly on alarm but costing me when it comes to grocery shopping/food budget as they can be heard chiming relentlessly all day long "J'ai un faim de loup" roughly translated to "I am so hungry I could eat a horse right now"

mardi 24 février 2009

Lil update

. My poor plants have been frost-bitten and left for dead on the balcony, hidden from sight and hence 'loin de yeux, loin de coeur'. Much to my relief I do not have to care for the plants anymore, not that I ever claimed to have a green thumb.

On the contrary I have always been a disparaging death maiden to plants !!

Plants that are healthy and full of vigour come within my reach and live under the same roof as I and then it only spells disaster for the plants as they wither and waste away: a slow and painful bereavement. I do not know what it is about plants or me that refuse to cooperate and co-exist harmoniously under the same roof. I would really like to keep them alive and flourishing if only they had the heart to collaborate and not self-destruct the way they do in my presence. Woe woe woe is me...

I will post pictorial proof if I do eventually get around to photographing dead plants.

dimanche 22 février 2009

All in a name

We are squabbling over the given names of soon to be little Miss Ben(it's her nickname at the moment) as in Benjamin- the last.

I should think that the pregnancy and ultimate delivery/birth gives me the right to name her-.
Her name has been narrowed down to two possibilities
Shrek can make contributions but the ultimate decision is mine to make.


I did not expect to have to vie for Petit Suisse's affection with his two-timing little amourette so soon. I thought that playground puppy love was still a few years away. My little boy is growing up fast. I deplore the hard fact that Kids these days seem to have lost their innocence at an alarmingly early stage and are precoce and all grown up before they even hit puberty.
It is cutesy and all but I just wanted to stay number one for a few more years before relinquishing...

Actually it's not about having an amourette or what not I just thought that Petit Suisse was not so interested in such frivolity and I was proven completely wrong.

Shrek will have to psychologically prepare the birds and bees talk for the not too distant future.

jeudi 19 février 2009


I sorely regret having gotten married too young and letting somebody else dictate the making of the decision to having kid after kid after kid after kid soon after.

I believe that frank and honest communication is important in all relationships be it in marriage or de facto partnership or parent-child type relations. I will not hesitate to say that a lot of children born are a result of an accident and/or lack of contraception thus unplanned pregnancies.

Perhaps I will ultimately serve as a reminder or example/role model of what not to follow for my own kids. I will say that I did not plan on having four kids before I turned thirty. Kids need to feel wanted and loved but not lied to about how they were conceived.

I have witnessed many big families: safe to say that three or more children nowadays qualifies as large families displaying more discord than harmony. There is no reason why a closely-knit family of two children will have less joy than that of a family with four bickering kids on semi-to no-speaking terms or displaying alarmingly and unbecomingly incompatible and irreconcileable differences. I have seen some strong bonds between two siblings and lots of discord and dispute between siblings from a larger family. Although subconsciously I think people do try to replicate their own family from childhood memories which are often seen through rose coloured glasses and not a real reflection of the reality now. The model they have seen sets a precedence and they will attempt to reproduce this chemin just like Shrek has done. I could care less and frankly it would have sufficed for me to have two children:well raised and taken care of than to have a small army of kids who have to have attention divided etc. Granted children from big families learn some important lessons in life like the need to share and the older children will in time be asked to help out with household chores and other tasks because their mother is just overworked: thus life and basic survival skills. This does not necessarily as I have seen translate to the last child because sometime the smallest becomes a self-centric and egoistic spoiled brat- funnily enough is usually the case of a unique child syndrome. In short it is somewhat dependent on how the children are raised and their character and not being given preference/favouritism because they are the smallest or mummy/daddy's favourite.

Quite often I feel like the thankless tasks that I fulfill everyday are just taken for granted. I realise that my children are too young to understand whatever feeling I emote let alone comprehend how to alleviate my anxiety or pain. I do feel however often misunderstood. I try to commiserate with the workload and stress that a working person (namely the father in this household) feels and that lack of sleep etc... leads to less than agreeable manners. I myself have my no less stressful and frustrating days at home. I do feel however that by being plunged unwillingly into an unplanned and much too soon pregnancy that I was in no way ready for somebody forgot that it wrought much apprehensiveness,anguish and tenseness into our already troubled communication.

I will opt for the solution perhaps the less communication there is the calmer the ménage. Maybe if we do not come to an agreeable and open sort of connection or exchange then it is better to converse less lest there be more tranquility in the house.

There is some angst-ridden fury all the more enraged by a hormonally charged pregnant woman up in arms about how unfair it is.

I do try my best to be understanding and sometime maybe even most of the time fail but whenever the screaming match begins and the row/quarrel intensifies with livid exchanges I realise that nothing has changed and that I have a case of hopelessly misplaced confidence in someone I thought was my partner.

Drawing me to a conclusion that I should distance myself and measure my words and actions much more carefully before it is too late.

lundi 16 février 2009

Shrek's surprise

I am deeply touched and grateful for Shrek and all my children's presence in my life. Shrek came home with a grand bouquet de fleurs that is overwhelmingly big, a cake which he decorated and a box of 'Mon Cheri'. I am over the moon with the thoughtfulness and all the efforts Shrek has been effecting. I will cherish my small but lavish 30th birthday celebrations.

Thank you Cheri and mes petits b'chous.

I love you all wholeheartedly!

Endearingly and affectionately yours,

Reflections of a 30 year old

I wanted to document by way of my blog some of my feelings on turning 30.

Frankly I do not feel like it makes any difference whatsoever now that I have turned 30.
Age is but a number and all that makes a difference is how we feel. Although physically age does have a connection with our biological clocks (especially for women). I do not have any problems though as I have more than done my fair share of reproductive duty and populating/propagating Shrek and my genes for at least another generation.

Physically I do not resemble my age. I still look relatively fresh and wrinkle free. I am by today's standard an extremely young mum who can still turn heads and stand out in a crowd. Shrek (humour me )

I do struggle with the whole paradox that demands women to be super working mums juggling a professional career with that of home duties and children rearing. I have four children to keep me on my feet and occupied.
I do not feel particularly wiser than I did at my 21st birthday which supposedly marked my entry into adulthood. I just know that I am armed with life's experiences and am more likely to make more informed decisions than before.

I hope to overcome the complexes that come with age: i.e. getting wrinkles and sagging and ailing health and little nicks and crooks.

I want to age gracefully and with the least pain. Hope keeps you alive as Shrek so often repeated.

I will continue hoping and doing everything I can in my power to try and slow the aging process.

30 is supposedly the golden age for women or so I have been told. Here is to me and my teetering adventures as a 30 year old!!! Oy Oy Oy

Prolifique maman malgré elle !

I have been through pregnancy 3 times and am now more than two-thirds of the way through my fourth. It does not get any easier or better. I do however can safely claim that I am more experienced than first time mothers and have some notions of what to expect for the birth.

I want to recount all my pregnancies and my three deliveries so to make sure that in the future my children will know what their mum went they themselves are equipped with some faint notion of how they came into the world.

I will go through each pregnancy and delivery in a manner most accurate as to how I remember them.

Petit Suisse : I had four and a half months of morning sickness, nausea, metallic taste and fatigue, all the hallmarks of symptoms of a pregnancy. It got better after five months although the fatigue stayed and this is something that is common with all of the pregnancies I had. I walked everywhere and one night after having traversed the Leman lake and it was 3 almost 4 weeks earlier than my expected due date my water broke at the wee hour of the morning probably around 2-3 am ish. It was impressive as I had lost all control and wetted/soaked the bed. in amniotic liquid. Shrek called the maternity and we promptly dashed for the hospital. The contractions came soon after we arrived and the intensity heightened and amplified. Beforehand I had heard some horror stories about the epidural and was reluctant at first to ask but the intensity of the contractions got the better of me and I decided to greenlight the epidural injection.
Delivery time came and I pushed for a fruitless hour. I had an inexperienced first-time midwife who had just assisted one or two births. She told me to push, push and push some more and Petit Suisse's hair kept making an appearance so he was yo-yoing without actually making his grand entrance. The Dr had to then interfere and she did so with the vaccuum (ventouse). I pushed during a big contraction and she pulled with the vacuum violently and brutally. She could have employed more finesse or been gentler but as a result I tore and had to be sewn up post-partum. I did not have an episiotomy which studies have shown not to be a better option than to tear naturally. So I was stitched up while the epidural was wearing off and I was now feeling the culmination of pain from the tearing and the labour. I did however endure the excruciating pain without screaming hence Shrek although present did not attest to the fact that it hurt.
One of my biggest gripes at that stage was he did not seem all that sympathetic for he saw it as pretty much routine and painless because I was not screaming and hurling like a headless chicken. He then took it upon himself to take up parole and become my spokesperson (my French was miserably not up to par at that point ) and explaining to people that

"It was fine, nothing out of the ordinary and quite alright by all standards."

What he did not know was that I suffered in silence for almost two months because the stitches hurt like hell everytime I urinated or walked... I kept up a brave face because my pain threshold was high and soldiered on without hinting at the physical laceration and agony I was enduring. Shrek had no inkling of what I was going through and quite frankly I felt indignation and disgust that he could nonchalantly tell people that it was fine blah blah blah when in fact he did not know what was really going on- it was misleading.

I even smiled in the photos taken...without wincing because it is my personal reflex to do so. Maybe I mask my pain by smiling so brightly in photos... Sometime I regret not letting my true feelings shine through.

I felt dissapointed, isolated and alone and had the baby blues accentuated by an incomprehensive midwife. She was not to know because I did not speak French and was not one to complain or demand service.

I cried many a silent tear to sleep. I felt that having one loyal suppporter was better than a dozen of half-assed supporters. I did not think that people cared about how I was doing or if I was in pain or suffered... all they cared about was the fact that I delivered a baby boy who was in good health. I did not feel like I counted as a woman or person, just merely a vessel and birthing instrument.

The fact is that I would have preferred my mum being there. In the old days the husbands or partners were not allowed in the delivery rooms... My mum had been accompanied by a good friend or her sister when she gave birth. I think on the whole it was a uniquely female bonding moment because only one who has been through it herself can sympathise with what the woman in labour is feeling. Men can empathise to a certain degree depending on their penchance for insight but cannot fully appreciate the extent to which pregnancy and birth changes a woman. Shrek's unintentional insensitivity floored me.

Nowadays I say to hell with suffering in silence, that is a misnomer. Being stoic only leads to wallowing in self-pity and resentment.

So I vow to let it be known when people ask me how I am doing the truth even if repeating that I am tired, exhausted and in pain bores even me. Make no mistake about it.

Lil Miss N: my period did not return after Petit Suisse's birth for a year. The first three months of pregnancy was uneventful as I did not exhibit any symptoms that I previously had with Petit Suisse. I did not know and had no suspicions that I had fallen pregnant. My stomach did not change much either which meant it was quite late when I discovered the pregnancy. I had to abruptly severe breastfeeding as advised by the gynocologist because my milk contained an excess of female hormone (estrogen) whilst I am pregnant. Petit Suisse was not impressed as he wailed and cried for two weeks.
Lil Miss N was comfortable in the warmth and safety/security of my womb so she did not want to be birthed. She was 6 days overdue.
I broke my water in the morning and we went to the maternity. I had not dilated that much by this time. Shrek returned home to park the car and he was coming back by bus. The midwife called Shrek to inform him that in fact things were moving faster than we had anticipated and he should hurry back if he did not want to miss Lil Miss N's grand entrance. I had the epidural injection again as per usual habit, this time with a lil bit less hesitance and trepidation.

I had an experienced midwife who guided me because eventhough it was my second time I had not learnt the first time how to properly and efficiently push. She was quite helpful and I felt more reassured as she assisted me and Miss N's head pushed through the threshold after only a few propulsions on my part. It was so fast and I was running the risk of tearing that the midwife told me to hold on and wait. With her head out and her body almost out I felt the urge to push...but had to hold back and this hurt...I screamed a little much to my surprise. I was relieved when I could finally release and she was born.

The post-partum was slightly better than that of Petit Suisse. I think if it was worse I would have been majorly depressed. As it was I returned home for three weeks of house-arrest save the weekend because Shrek had to serve the army for three weeks and as I had a newborn in winter with kneehigh level of snow. It was a particular year where snowfall was unusually abundant. I did not leave the house as I was not equipped or felt fit enough. I had just given birth and taking care of Petit Suisse who was understandably jealous at first and not in the least bit independent and a newborn took its toll(was enough to drive sane women mad)

It passed and things got better as I slowly adapted to the way of life in Geneva. I still have not been able to make as many friends as I would like but that is another problem for another rant.

Baby M: Once again I did not suspect being pregnant. I fell pregnant after returning from an extended four month holiday: three month long stay in Sydney and a month long stay in Vietnam. The first few months were once again uneventful and went by without much notice. The last month leading up to the birth though left me with much pain in the pelvis as Baby M's head was in birth position and it put pressure on my pelvic floor/bassin.

His birth was initiated by the water is dictated by precedence. I did not have contractions and stayed a night at the maternity being monitored. Since the water had broken I had to be induced by pills to provoke contractions and hence commence labour.
I once again requested the epidural.
I was assisted this time by the head-midwife who is experienced and pleasant and gentle. She is in fact a friend of Shrek's. She was astonished by the lack of blood when Baby M came. I did not loose any blood whatsoever but more than made up for this later up in the maternity recovery ward when my uterus was pressed and an abundance of clotted blood came rushing out. I felt light-headed and was attended to by the midwives to ensure that uterus contracts properly. I lost quite an impressive amount of blood clots.

I did not enjoy the maternity stays for the three because medically speaking I got the care I needed but missed out on some comforts...and could not get any rest because unfortunately for me I was always in a full capacity room with either snoring mums (they are worse than Shrek) or perturbed newborns.

That sums up my three children's births so far. In resume I would say that the fourth and final pregnancy resembles Baby M's the most with the pelvic floor pain even more intense and acute. Shrek has been meticulously helping out much more so than before. He is more aware and conscious of what I am undergoing.

I will post more about the fourth birth after post-partum.

I want my children to know that I am first and foremost a woman in my own right, capable with an intellectual insight.

I will always savour the lessons my mum taught me and how she stressed the importance of being an independent-financially and intellectually woman. Being a working mum to be valued and counted.

I also want them to know that despite the current trend of mums who give birth and immediately return to work without skipping a beat, I fight against the current and am a full time stay at home mum to endow them with the gift of time, care, attention and love. I would like to educate them and even when I lose my patience and temper would like them to know I always have their best interest at heart and that I do want them to make their own mistakes, follow their own dreams and paths. Whatever they choose to do in life, I am here with Shrek to guide them but not to dictate, to support them without being judgemental (or trying not to be) and to love them unconditionally as best we could. I cannot be the perfect mum because perfection does not exist but I try my best to be the best mum and person I can be so that my children will be proud of me as I hope I will be proud of them despite our differences and likely discord/arguments over certain subjects in time to come.

This is my favourite biblical passage Corinthians 13:4-7 which sums up elegantly how I feel. Oddly enough this is also the passage I chose to read at my wedding.

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

It ends on an optimistic note because I believe that dwelling on the positive will make a difference.

samedi 14 février 2009

Nein-zager (sic)

Nein-zager is German for nay-sayer. Shrek being the epitomic Swiss that he is reserves a knee-jerk action of saying no to everything and anything before first testing the viability of projects, usefulness of products, etc...

He is always reticent about trying new things so when I first proposed/recommended that he use the Oral-B Sonic Vitality electric toothbrush his knee-jerk reaction was to say 'Nah, not interested.' I insisted and bought the said device anyway. Once he tried and found that it was not so bad after all, he has become addicted to brushing.

It goes to show that first impressions can be misleading especially in Shrek's case. Right Shrekkie ?

vendredi 13 février 2009


On at least 5 different occasions I have attempted to cook sticky rice using the Ceran stovetop (induction). )I have been thoroughly dissapointed and the very last attempt which took place today no less ended in disaster as I soaked the sticky rice grains and then cook it as I normally did using the ordinary electric stove and it ended up a messy, sticky, mushy blob and the final straw came when Petit Suisse being the busybody that he is turned the heat to high as the ending draw near and burnt the whole pot of goo.

Needless to say I was in a particularly pissy mood. I will now challenge Shrek to use the darn Ceran stove and cook sticky rice without it turning into mush or porridge or inedibly undercooked or entirely burnt goo.

I am not impressed by the stove at all which was Shrek's idea in the first place. It is a temperamental and moody entity much to my dismay and chagrin. It does however have a few saving graces those being that it can reach boiling point at lightning speed and does OK for other types and genres of cooking, just do not try to mess with the sticky rice God. Shrek can probably vouch more for its qualities...

Next time I am going to employ the microwave for sticky rice, seems more foolproof and less frustrating.

One more important attribute I forgot to mention about the Ceran stovetop: it has 3 stoves and one of them (the smallest) is reliably unreliable as 9 out of the 10 times I turn it on, the control flashes and flashes for a full minute before automatically turning itself off because it cannot detect the saucepan or frying pan sitting atop it (eventhough I only use exclusively Inox pots and pans nowadays). It does not work as simple as that. Shrek however will rush to its defence and say that it does not work because it's the pots/pans fault. For a universally black or white omni response Shrek is being rather evasive when I criticise his dada Induction plaques.

jeudi 12 février 2009

Differences of opinion

When Shrek and I first got together there were many incompatibilities which oddly enough centred around food, food preparations and the way leftovers are conserved etc..

The unforgettable episode involved an explosion over how vegetables should be cut shortly after we started to live together. This has been burned into my mind and I will never quite get over how grave it seemed at the time. He was convinced that the only way to cut vegetables was how his mother had taught him. I refused to cut it the way his exigency commanded. He demanded that I acquiesce to his authoritarian tyrannical way and so a feud soon followed. Suffice to say that since that memorable (for all the wrong reasons) clash we have come to a compromise about how veggies should be cut. I will cut it the way I see fit whenever I cook. He can cut it however he wants but he will not impose his will onto me without resistance.

Other non less spectacular affairs centred around how unhygienic it was for me to reuse over and over the oil that has been deep-fried and stored for a few weeks. This led to some short-cut chemistry lessons: how bacteria develops even when it is invisible and how no temperature high enough will succeed in disintegrating these persistent toxins. It deeply enriched and enlightened me. Needless to say I was less than thrilled and delighted with how he delivered his lessons and the condescending tone and ensuing belittlement and denigration. He maintained that eventhough I had passed college level chemistry and physics that I was in need of refreshment courses. I felt quite insulted and bullied.

Anyway I have resolved to not accept such behaviour from Shrek. I had to quickly correct him and remind him that due respect had to be given and that I like himself can commit errors and mistakes and we can learn from them but that noone is dispensed to changing overnight their lifelong habits and that some of his habits befuddle and annoy me to no end.

Food for thought and reflection. I hope that we have thoroughly rectified and can slowly move forward by ironing out incompatibilities. Life is a series of compromises. This general rule of thumb applies to all aspects of life: work, family and even pleasure.

A disclaimer: I wanted to record this once and for all. I do not hold grudges for an eternity. I have almost all but forgotten about these events.


Shrek has said that a duck cannot reproduce a swan but I tend to argue that little ducklings can grow up to be swans.

Petit Suisse was diagnosed with mild myopia and his vision is -1.5 degrees in both eyes. I rarely wear spectacles as I do not need them except for driving and watching some sort of screen such as the TV teletext and cinema. Shrek is heavily myopic so it is that Petit Suisse has inherited this trait at the tender age of 5 and a half.

I just hope that it does not degenerate and stabilise over the years as the more education one acquires and intensive studies one engages in the worse the degree of myopia.

mercredi 11 février 2009


I do really wonder about Shrek's culinary skills as he was able to deliver overcooked broccoli branches and undercooked, almost raw broccoli flowers in the same dish.

Only Shrek is capable of such a contrasting dish: with textures so extreme. He is unique that Shrek.

I must praise him for all the efforts he has been willing to pitch into the sharing of household chores lately. Bravo Shrekkie. He can be thoughtful when he chooses.

Tentative first steps

Baby Moy's first few drunken or wobbly steps reminiscent of a duckling were registered but his milestone has been marred by 'déjàvu' by which I mean he is the third child in a series and somehow whether I would like to admit or not the novelty has worn off somewhat.

This by no means take away from his feat. I still got excited albeit a tiny little bit less than the first time I caught and captured on film Petit Suisse walking his tentative first steps.

In time Baby Moy will mark his place in the world and be remarked by his own unique footprints. When they are babies the little milestones are remarkable but after the first year the leaps and bounds are more far and few between.

In fact Baby M's first few drunken master steps seem to have taken place so long ago and I've only recorded it now...

He's got a grand total of eight bunny like slightly crooked teeth : four on the upper and four on the lower gum.

He recently learned the art of smacking his lips onto my cheeks at request (more like coaxing, blackmailing) and Shrek's with less frequency.

dimanche 8 février 2009

Passport photo

I really do dread having to renew my passport for one sole reason: having to have my passport photo taken. I have been unsatisfied with previous photos.The requirements/guidelines are standard: not too far away nor too close, not too dark nor bright, no smiling allowed, neutral expression with closed mouth, hair out of the face etc... It sounds innocuous enough but I spent the good part of yesterday morning getting ready just to look presentable.

The time came when I asked a sleepy and grouchy Shrek (he had insufficient rest) who had not been caffeinated enough to take a series of close-up photos which will be selected, sorted, filtered and developed as my requisite passport photo. He complained about my twitches, my mouthy expression, my turned-up nose, my uncooperative and unruly hair...etc... I got a bit fed up and just wanted him to take the photo already. Which he did take : close to twenty. I dread for the most part the results because I somehow do not find myself very photogenic in these awkward shots. I think the strict guidelines (which are necessary because otherwise noone would be able to stick to a standard) contribute to the unattractive (for the most part) attribute and it is mighty difficult to capture a good/photogenic or attractive shot of most people given such circumstances. Shrek did capture an OK looking me...albeit tentatively speaking because I believe that I am capable of looking damn good... (may sound a little vain but it's the truth) and yet in passport photos one would be forgiven for thinking that is contrary.

Thanks to Shrek's mighty effort, patience and understanding I have 2 acceptable prints that proves to be not too much of an eyesore.

The results speak for themselves...I just have to wait for the Australian passport office/embassy to accept that it is coherent with their stringent rules.

vendredi 6 février 2009

Pas Question

There was a period Lil Miss N's favourite and most .often employed phrase was 'Pas Question!!' which translates to 'Out of the question' or 'No way'. She employed this phrase regardless of what situation she was in. She was the epitome of sartorical elegance and simplicity.

Pas Question was uttered left, right and centre to signify disdain, rebellion and ultimately her pig-headedness as she was in effect figuratively playing deaf.

The pas question phase has returned... much to my amusement.

jeudi 5 février 2009



How many ways I loathe thou

Thou art wretched and despicable.
Thou hath etched an imprint of discontent.
Thou art the epitome of inefficiency
Thou giveth independent service providers a bad name

Thy service art full of impediments and disruptions.

Thou must not enrage more frustrated customers
Thou deserveth to go bust
Thou art the peak of troughs.
Thou hath to be stoppeth.

Thou shall not be the cause of more desolation
Thou shall be the beacon of despair
Thou shall reap the rewards of apathy
Thou shall die a listless, unglorious and painful death.

In memoriam.

I shall revel in thy descend into obscurity and obsoletion.

After the laboriously long and tediously time-consuming procedure that Shrek went through to bring about the downfall of Cablecom aka the worst/most abominable Internet and telecommunications company in the lengthy history of my dealings with net/fone providers I ever have, I now have a grudge against them.

Numerous long winded phone calls to their hotline resulted in frustration, 3 plus long months of waiting patiently for some service being reinstated ended in a rupture of a contract. Their promises to call back, to get onto restoring service as soon as practiceable were empty. They lied to the Ombudsman when pressed for a response as to why they had prolonged the delay. Technically we were still linked to them and the contract stipulated that we have to notify them of our intention to severe the contract at least a month in advance hence we were impeded by this and could not on our own accord sign and start afresh with a new provider.

Shrek filed a complaint with the Ombudsman in order to resolve the conflict. After back and fro letters and emails, it finally ended in a non-resolution and impasse.

I am wholly dissapointed and will vouch for Cablecom's ultimately pathetic customer service. Their server constantly got interrupted...

They deserve to go bankcrupt because not only are they morally corrupt and their non-existent service resulted in lost time and inconveniences for our household, we are sworn off them for life. There can never be a 'NON-service' provider worse than this pitiful bunch of morons!!!

A picture of Shrek's newest darling

Here is the digital representation of Shrek's newest and most prized acquisition, the darling gem

taratata "PFAFF 654 iron roller".

She is a life and time saver that renders Shrek's existence more comfortable and slightly less stressful/worrisome. Phew

He whips her out once a week and sets her rolling pin in motion for about an hour ironing everything he can get his hands on. It is his new passion after auctioning for expensive luxury watches and jewels for a fraction of the price. Shrek's got a lot of dada these days.

My grievance against the local library

I frankly think that the opening hours at my local library can be extended and many improvements can be made to their overall service. It is a public library and they are supposedly there to serve the public: they are public servants and after all their salaries are paid for by the council.

Alas they seem to have limited working hours.

I will post a link to their opening hours and let you judge for yourself if that is not pathetic.

I want to emphasise the fact that they are closed for loans on Mondays. They are open more or less in the afternoon Tuesday to Friday for about 3 hours at best. This makes it extremely inconvenient for frequent library users like myself. They do not have a 'return box' so that I can simply drop off items borrowed on their off days and hours which I might add largely outnumbers the hours they are open during the week. Hélas they open on a Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm during the school year and 10am to 12 noon during off season. I really do wonder about what the staff supposedly do the rest of the time

They do not answer their phone because apparently they are understaffed. I tried ringing 5 times different numbers: adult loans, children loans and the main line before somebody finally answered.

In short the library is only the tip of the iceberg in what I refer to as the lack of customer service in Switzerland.

mercredi 4 février 2009


I have not taught in a long while and the lapse consequently results in rustiness. I have recently attempted to relearn the art of teaching children by practising it on my own children. Teaching invariably involves a lot of patience when it comes to kids. Perseverance and most importantly comprehension that it is the first time a student comes into contact with such concepts as word recognition, sound matching and association between the spoken and written forms. I have been humbled somewhat and have to keep reminding myself that reading does not come naturally to a 5 and a half year old. It is painstakingly difficult to get it right from the word go but the reward is that once it is mastered the pride the said little person will have garnered is something to behold not forgetting that the teacher cum mother will be elated and gratified by such a breakthrough.

All that said Petit Suisse still has quite a way to go before he can truly be considered as a capable reader. Lots more practice is needed. I believe we will get there and it will be an event to celebrate. I am quite content with the progress in Mathematics and Logic he has made so far.
When I used to teach kids ranging from 4 to 18 year olds I took the greatest pride in achieving that seemingly impossible feat of inspiring slow and not so bright kids to attain their personal best and reach a level that would encourage them to further their academic endeavours. It is a teacher's hallmark to instill a sense of betterment and self improvement in their pupils.

lundi 2 février 2009

IRON MAN saga continues

He is not content being pigeon-holed as an IRON MAN. I think it's a rather chivalrous gesture for him to iron his own chemises for work. I do not mind the other household chores so much but I abhor ironing. It must be said I did not ask to be pigeon-holed as a full time housewife whose only dominion consists of home duties and taking care of children but I have found myself here so it's only fitting Shrek should sacrifice and share a bit of the burden. I think Shrek would be carrying the torch for champions of ironing the world over. He does it so well and has recently acquired a rather auspicious equipment called PFAFF iron roller that would facilitate and hasten his ironing thereby rendering it mere childplay.

Behold mere mortals Shrek is the newly crowned king of IRON MEN !!!

I cannot wait when the time comes to don my suits and rejoin the workforce, employ my faculties, engage in adult conversations and start feeling slightly more important than a simple-minded housekeeper/round the clock nanny. I am engaging in wistful thinking again. --SIGH--

Human beings are such fickle creatures. One is never satisfied with ones present. One always always yearns for the greener grass on the other side. Insatiable

Shrek is a Zebra

Shrek's laundry filters have only two colours : black or white. I am worried that he might be colourblind. I have to sort out the clothes: wool, silk or anything that requires a soft wash from the ordinary mostly cotton and polyester and then Shrek will mindless load the washing machine with either black(colours included) or white only vêtements. He has ruined quite a few woollen items of clothing. He should eschew the whole ordeal but he has been rather conscientious lately with his share of household chores/tasks hence he employs his resources in loading but more importantly emptying the washer and hanging of clothes.

One can be a pharmacist but one cannot distinguish between 'fragile' and 'normal' garments. It is the lack of attention to details/a deficit disorder which I might add can generally extend to the whole of the male species.

dimanche 1 février 2009

Little Miss

My darling lil Miss N is a sweetie. She usually repeats whatever her older bro Petit Suisse says to the letter. She feels that by mimicking him she is going to achieve more notoriety. She has her own character which is stubborn and headstrong just like her parents but she has to find her place in the world because she is sandwiched between one older and one younger bro. She sometimes resorts to acting all baby-like by babbling in a monosyllabic language mamma, papa, mamamama... and other times she will say 'N aussi, N wants' whenever Petit Suisse has requested something be it nurture or alimentation or what not.

N aussi, N muô'n literally translates to N too, N wants.


Lately I have been feeling especially desperate as I often time and again find myself under self-imposed house arrest much to my dismay.

I have several reasons for being under such a strict regime of house-arrest.
Baby Moy just caught the nasty chicken pox hence I have to limit my outtings to a minimum. It was snowing and the ground was slippery and wet making it risky business for a mum of 3 and 3/4 kids to manœuvre 2 hyperactive toddlers and a pusher. Lastly Sundays are literally Sabbaticals for Geneva-siders (except Shrek who today is working until very late) rendering it pointless to go out when there is nothing open and not a soul to be found roaming the short not one exciting event to get hyped up about.

Around the time of Little Miss N's birth it was snowing much more heavily. The snow stayed and it was almost knee high and I found myself stuck inside the four walls for weeks on end as Shrek was serving his yearly compulsory term in the Swiss army to carry out his duties as a good citizen. I was frustrated,isolated and felt enclosed and close to breaking point. Who wouldn't when having to deal with a jealous first-born and a crying newborn without any help ?

This time the entrapment is only temporary as I hope to take the kids outdoors and into the wind-swept, frost-bitten cold as soon as is practicable.

Cottage cheese

I still do not get what the deal with cottage cheese is. People seem to praise it for its comparatively low-fat content and a good substitute for the evil decadent hence rich hence good cheeses such as cream cheese, double cream cheese. It is supposedly reeked with health benefits. I on the other hand find it bland and as tasty as chalk. I have used it a few times in 'Gratins' once in gratin Dauphinois and another time in a pasta bake or pâtes gratiné with near-disastrous results.

Chalk it up to another overrated food. I would rather deprive myself of dairy products altogether than to endure eating chalky and bland cheese with no character whatsoever. Call me finicky but I give cottage cheese thumbs down, it's better left alone.