Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Lagi Lagi Gambar Makanan

My stomach started grumbling at 5.30PM and I realized I haven't eaten since breakfast. Went down to the kitchen to find a defrosted chicken breast, but couldn't figure out what to do with it that would be fast. Saw some potatoes by the fridge, and I thought..hmm how about an herb butter baked potato? I peeled and cube the potatoes into little pieces, threw in some dried rosemary and dill, some garlic, some small onions, butter, salt and pepper, and mixed them in a small casserole dish. Sprinkled some mozarella, and chucked it in the oven for about 15 minutes. E voila, that should keep me stuffed until dinnertime, i think. Here's a picture, looking rather gross, but totally edible.

Btw, Happy Merdeka Day, everyone!

Day +50 dan Sedikit Emosi

Dang! It's 8.30 AM and I'm late! Was planning to wake up an hour earlier so I could do more in the morning (exercise, thesis, etc)...but maybe I exerted myself a little last night and got tired. Today is Day +50 post transplant, and I'm halfway through to my 100 day mark. God has been really kind to me so far. Anyhoo, I heard this song yesterday and it reminded me of the many uncertainties that I'm currently faced with, on my way to recover from this bugger called leukemia. Actuallly, I do firmly believe that the leukemia is gone...I just have to make sure it doesn't come back! Trying to live with that is the scariest thing at the moment, for me.

Damien Rice - Cannonball

Still a little bit of your taste in my mouth
Still a little bit of you laced with my doubt
Still a little harder to say what's going on

Still a little bit of your ghost, your witness
Still a little bit of your face I haven't kissed
You step a little closer each day
That I can’t say what's going on

Stones taught me to fly
Love, taught me to lie
Life taught me to die
So it's not hard to fall
When you float like a cannonball

Still a little bit of your song in my ear
Still a little bit of your words I long to hear
You step a little closer to me
So close that I can't see what's going on

Stones taught me to fly
Love, taught me to lie
Life taught me to die
So it's not hard to fall
When you float like a cannon..
Stones taught me to fly
Love, taught me to cry
So come on courage
Teach me to be shy
'Cause it's not hard to fall
And I don't wanna scare her
It's not hard to fall
And I don't wanna lose
It's not hard to grow
When you know that you just don't know

Jiwang sikit hari ni...

Monday, August 29, 2005

Inikah Cinta

Alamak, I missed it last night, and I missed it today. What happened? Somebody tell me! Diorang still kat kampung ke???

Day +49

Blood counts ok. Total White 6.9, Hb 9.9 and Platelets 105. Prednisone reduced from 25mg to 20mg daily, other medications continue as usual. I'm happy, doc is happy. Alhamdulillah...The only thing I wasn't too happy about at the clinic today was the waiting. Ugh. Arrived at 8.30am, only managed to get my blood sample at 10am, then waited to see the doctor and after that another 1/2 hour of iv medication before I finally get to go home. Nice system they got there. And there were so many people today at the clinic that I might as well just be in a cinema or a dinner party. Doc also asked whether I go out to eat, I said no, but she said I could and should only eat at posh places (do you hear that Z? POSH places only!) hehehe...

Finally, here's a picture of the chicken in the bag. It's already out of the foil bag (obviously) when I snapped this. I didn't forget the water this time, so it came out just a bit soupy, which was nice. Yum yum (yes masuk bakul angkat sendiri, masak sendiri makan sendiri). Memang sodap.

Ok...TV time..I thought I ordered Beauty & the Beast from eflix, it turned out to be Beauty & the Beast Enchanted Christmas, which is a different movie..bargh.

Dubai Baby!!

Why are all my best friends moving out of the country? Do I stink ? I hope not! Is it my lack of hair? Is it because I've got a fat face? (Incidentally, does the world revolve around ME? hehe) First there's I and her grand plans to move to Australia. Now Mar's got an attachment in Dubai, and she's leaving Friday morning. Yes, THIS Friday. Bit too soon, eh? (cue: tears well up in eyes) I'm genuinely happy for her career advancement, but I sure will hate to see her go! Boohoo..!

We went through the starting of our working adult life together. Made mistakes together. I tagged along when I didn't have a boyfriend, she tagged along when she didn't have one. We used to be inseparable when we were unattached that it got my mum worried for a bit back then. When we first started working, we had the periodic group of friends that we hung out with. As time passes, these friends got weeded out somehow, and some remain our very good friends until today. Aah...those were the days. I don't hang out with her as much these days, but she remains the one person I will tell mostly everything to, be it a fight with Z, work complains or whatever. We have this weird thing between us, where when we meet, we will hug everybody else, except for each other. I don't know why that happens, but I think it's the "sibling" theory. You don't really show affection for the ones you care about the most usually, do you? Just my guess, but I could be wrong. Perhaps I stink, that's why. Hehehe...

I will miss not being able to see her. Well, with technology we can always talk on yahoo or whatever, but it's not going to be the same, you know? It just feels a little...inconvenient. But then again, who ever said friendship is all about convenience? If your friend has to transfer to Dubai, then you must inconveniently save up some money so you can pay her a visit during the sale while getting free accomodation. Haha.

Good luck Mar. And take care. I will come use your facilities during the Big Dubai Sale. Get my room ready.

Alfie - What's It All About?

Alf yang koreng....looking angry because she can't jump through the window.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Chicken in a Bag A-la Thai With Noodles

Dang..my mouth is on fire! Everybody else had spaghetti bolognese today, but since the minced meat was from I don't know when, I was told to make my own lunch (kesian..). So I decided to try one of Jamie Oliver's Chicken in a Bag recipes...the ones where you put the chicken in whatever concoction, and chuck it in a tin foil bag, seal it and bake. Tried some ala-thai one I saw him make on TV. Ok jugak chicken in a bag, coz the juice don't evaporate. I forgot to put some water, so my noodles became too dry and salty from the soy sauce. Chicken seasoned well though. Will try again, next time will make sure I get the instructions right so the dish will have some gravy. So no pictures this time, sebab malu!! Hahahaha...

Anyway here's the recipe for what I tried today (I saw it on his Happy Days Tour video):
1 red chili sliced
1/2 red bell pepper sliced
1/2 thumb ginger, chopped
4-5 tbs kikkoman soy sauce
1 tbs sesame oil
1 juice of lime (save the pulp)
some spring onions chopped
some fresh coriander, chopped
noodles for 1 person (the flat chinese ones)
1 breast of chicken (make some slits so the flavors can absorb quickly)
1/2 - 3/4 glass water (if you want soupy, use more water and soy sauce)

mix everything in a bowl. throw in the pulp of squeezed lime as well. make a bag from tin foil. throw everything in tin foil..put chicken last (on top of everything). pour the remaining juices from bowl into foil bag and seal properly. put in oven at 200 celcius for 20 mins. i used the little toaster oven and it worked just as well. heheheheee...

ok selamat mencuba!

Day 47+ and my computer is going mad

Warning: This is more of a "what I did today" entry (Aren't they all? hahaha).

Wanted to post pictures of Alf chilling outside my room window today, but somehow couldn't transfer the pictures from my camera to my computer. Everytime i try to drag or copy the pictures from the camera, my computer reboots on its own. At the bios startup screen, after it recognizes the hard drive, cpu, memory and what not, a message appears, which says "secondary IDE channel no 80 conductor cable installed". Any nerds out there know what is wrong with my computer? Do I have to replace my IDE cable? Argh! Wish I had a camera with a bluetooth chip now. Being wired is so difficult and messy.

Had an awesome day. Finally got my road tax renewed. Went to the shops for a bit, and bought a couple things on sale. Then some girlfriends came to visit and we gossiped for hours, until the lovely Z arrived. I did tell you I was getting rather lonely at home, did I? Kira kalau main The Sims tu, the Social bar dah blinking red la...hehe. Ordered some takeout for me and brother since it was already 9.30pm by the time Z arrived, and I couldn't be bothered to step into the kitchen. Can't wait for tomorrow (actually later today since it's officially Sunday), a couple more people coming to visit, Yay!

If I wake up early later I might go get more RAM for my computer, and get this annoying auto-reboot problem solved so I can get cute Alf's picture up.

My blood pressure is a bit high today. The good news is that over the past three days I've lost about 3 kilos of excess water. Yess! Hail the power of Lasix! I'm feeling good, despite the fine hair growing around my mouth, but that can easily be remedied with some hair removal cream (after 24 hours of patch test, of course). I wonder if I crush the Ciclosporin pills and rub it on my head, my hair would grow faster...kekekeke!

I'm gonna go finish my Harry Putar fast, so I can start reading the foot-high pile of books that I bought at the Times warehouse sale yesterday. Oh yea...i've been playing Prince of Persia - The Warrior Within for a bit, found the game a bit darker than The Sands of Time, but will try again soon.

Au revoir, mes amis.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Super Spicy Shrimp Spaghetti

Got back from the Times Warehouse Sale around 1PM. Bought books to last me a year. hehehe...(they were cheap!). Came home to find there was no defrosted chicken, so I decided to concoct a new pasta recipe.

(Sorry! no accurate measurements since i didn't really pay attention, use your instincts. As a reference, 2-3 cloves of garlic should make 1-2 servings)
2-3 cloves Garlic, chopped
1 half thumb size Ginger, chopped
1/2 small red bell pepper, diced
1 green chili, sliced thinly
1 cili kering sliced (kalau nak tambah kick)
Some black olives, sliced (optional)
Shrimps (shelled)
Fresh coriander, chopped coarsely
Paprika powder
Olive oil (i think about 3 tablespoons)
Salt + Pepper to taste
Spaghetti (cooked)
Parmesan cheese

Saute the garlic, ginger, red bell pepper, green chili, chili kering, olives in olive oil. Then put in shrimps and let it cook. Sprinkle some paprika, salt and pepper. Add in the coriander leaves. Then lower the heat and mix the spaghetti in. Toss. Put in plate. If it looks a bit dry, add in a bit more olive oil to your liking. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese, or grated cheddar pun boleh. Eat. Time to prepare 20 mins, time to eat 10 mins.

My kind of pasta these days, I got tired of the carbonara and tomato based sauces. Eugh.

Oh oh...

Bugger...i think I'm growing facial hair..noticed it this morning..around my lips. Ni semua ciclosporin punya pasal lah ni!! Argghh...tumbuh la rambut kat kepala...why the mouth!! isk..sabar je lah.

Ok lah...i'm off to the Times Warehouse Sale while it's still 10 AM in the morning. Before it gets crowded with kiasus.


Another poem from Reza to me

While I was busy looking up "electrolysis of aqueous solutions" for my little brother so he can understand his chemistry better, R Yahoo-ed to tell me that his mum is not very well at the moment. Let's pray that R's mother will recover from the operation soon. Amin.

Anyway, here's another poem the poetry man sent me:

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on that sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

-Dylan Thomas

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Black Pepper Dispute

It's 5:00 AM and I'm up. Seems like normal practice these days, sleep at 1, then wake up at 4+, sleep again around 5+ and wake up again around 7 AM to resume my daily activities.

Anyway, since i'm up, I thought I'd do some research on the usage of black pepper in cooking, for a neutropenic patient like me. (Although I still don't understand how I am still neutropenic when my total white count is 9.3 with 85% neutrophils.) My mum and I seem to be having a dispute about my using black pepper in my food. I put black pepper all the time in my cooking (like Jamie Oliver does, hehe) and she doesn't think that that is allowed for an immunosuppressed patient like me.

So I scoured the net, and found this article on UNC Healthcare, a 109 page pdf document, which I found very useful. It contains all the information a bone marrow or stem cell transplant patient would need to know before, during and after a transplant, including exercise suggestions!. The best part is, it has a FAQ for easy reference! Here are my some of my favorite FAQs:

  1. Can I use black pepper?
    Black pepper can be used if it is added to the food while it cooks. You can not sprinkle black pepper on your food after it has been prepared because there are certain kinds of molds in pepper that can cause infection.

  2. Do I have to get rid of my cat and dog?
    You do not have to get rid of your cat and dog. However, your caretaker should take care of your pets. Avoid close facial contact with your pets but you may pet them in moderation. Please make sure your pet is bathed regularly and doesn't have fleas. Do not handle the cat litter box and keep it in a room which you are not using (for example the basement, garage or an extra bathroom or closet). Do not clean bird cages or fish aquariums. Notify your doctor if you have a bird in your home.

  3. When can I drive?
    Driving can be resumed when you have fully recovered from your transplant. However, it may be dangerous to you and others if you are not fully recovered and still taking medications that make you sleepy or weak.

  4. When can I go out to eat?
    You may go out to dinner during a non-crowded time and eat cooked foods. Take-out is also allowed if it is fully cooked. Avoid all potlucks, salad bars and buffets.

  5. How long do I have to wear the green mask?
    You must wear the mask each time you come to the clinic! You do not need to wear the mask in the car or at home. The mask must be worn for outdoor outings or to anyplace with crowds until your provider tells you a mask is no longer required. Allogeneic patients must wear the green mask at least until day 100 and off all immunosuppressive drugs.

I don't seem to have violated any of the FAQs so far. My black pepper is always used while cooking, not after. Must print this 109 page guide out, and highlight stuff for my mum to see. I've been buggered with this "black pepper" issue for a long time, and getting tired of being told of what I can and cannot eat, despite already printing many copies of the Neutropenic Diet table for easy reference around the house.

I don't see what's so difficult about following the Neutropenic Diet. Just follow the "What Food is Allowed" column, avoid the "What Food is NOT Allowed" column, and I believe I should be safe. Of course the Neutropenic Diet does not explain what is nutritious, but my aim is to eat both nutritiously, and deliciously. So what's the problem with trying to make nutritious food delicious? For example, why shouldn't I be using cheese when the Neutropenic diet says its OK? Cheese got calcium what? It's not that I use the whole block of cheese in one go! Sure it's got some sodium, but a little sodium won't hurt, I believe. Huh...penat betul lah.

Ok, enough research. Going back to sleep now. Have a doctor's appointment later this morning..bargh..another long wait at the clinic I expect.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Huh....tired, and excited!

Woke up and made my way to KLCC early this morning to have breakfast with my boss and two colleagues. Boss wanted to hand me a letter before leaving for his stint in America to gather himself some knowledge. It was excellent to see my friends again, I am starting to feel rather lonely at home now. Mum was reluctant at first to let her beloved daughter eat outside for the first time post transplant, but i promised her that I would only eat the food if the place looks clean. Ended up in Warung with a nasi lemak with sambal rendang (it looked clean and it was yummy) and a can of Chrysanthamum tea. I'm still alive now...thanks guys for inviting me out!

After breakfast, I walked around the mall for 1/2 hour, and took the opportunity to shop a bit since I was out and there was a sale. That should count as my exercise for the day. After that it was back in the car with mum, and off home we went. All the excitement tired me, and I slept for 2 hours after that...I guess I'm not that fit after all. Need to work a bit more on the stamina bit.

Ok ciao....

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Jimi Asmara

Sedap jugak cerita ni. Siapa ada soundtrack dia? Boleh pinjam?

Apa nak makan hari ni?

Bought a french loaf just now. I wanted to make a philly cheese steak, but there's no steak at home. Maybe I could sub it with chicken instead...but it won't be the same...! Hmm maybe i'll just not make anything until dinner.

A picture of my breakfast "pizza"...sliced bread, tomato paste, sprinkle oregano, black pepper, paprika, a little salt and some mozarella cheese and toast in toaster oven for 3 minutes until cheese melts and the bread becomes crunchy.

Man...the toaster oven my brother got for free from Citibank Reward Points is really coming in handy. The only thing that won't fit in there is a whole chicken.

Movie agenda for today: Jimi Asmara. Hehehe..

Now this is what I had for lunch. I made the chicken cheesesteak sandwich anyway. Eh...ni blog makanan ke blog leukemia? Hmmmm.....

Finally got some beef in the fridge today. Special order from I don't know where. The meat is supposedly the freshest. Apa nak masak ha...apa nak masak...a proper philly cheese steak perhaps? No more pictures la, it will look just like the above, except there will be beef instead of chicken in it. Mmmmmm...too much cheese in my daily food intake..but I need the calcium!

Monday, August 22, 2005

Please la Jamil....DO SOMETHING!

Topic: Drama Inikah Cinta.

I'm hating this Jamil character because he such a softy! If he truly loves Rima, DO Something! Why let that Shidee guy get in the way? (He's too bulky anyways, yuck). Huh...letih la tengok drama Inikah Cinta ni...Jamil's too busy being nice to Shidee while Rima is mad coz Jamil won't do anything about their obvious love for each other. Why don't we just twist the plot, where in the end Jamil confesses that he actually loves Shidee and they both fly off to America to have a gay commitment ceremony? The other thing I don't get is why they like to meet at roadsides. Who does that? Who stops by a roadside in Putrajaya to "get some air?" Who calls their friend and say "eh, let's meet by that highway in Putrajaya. I got a problem to talk to you about. See you in an hour yeah?" Tak logic langsung! The other thing yang tak logic is me still watching the drama despite my complains. hehehehe...cannot miss...it's some sort of an irritainment for me, somehow...much like watching Britney and Kevin's Chaotic or Newlyweds.

No cooking today. Too long time spent at the clinic. Had the helper reproduce Viccuda's Ayam Goreng Kunyit (3rd try) and finally it turned out perfect today. He he he...Spent the rest of the day watching DVD (Breakfast at Tiffany's - Nice!!) and working on my MBA thesis (tiba2 semangat).

This is Day +42. Doc told me that I'm doing very well at the moment. My counts are up, WBC 9.3, Hb 11.3 and platelets 116. Nice! Liver ok, kidneys a bit off, from the lasix (diuretic) I've been taking to reduce the swelling around my ankles, torso and face. I'm still not off the steroids, the dose is decreased slightly every week until i get off it. Pray to God that I continue to do well in the longer run. Amin.

Adios amigos!

Sunday, August 21, 2005


I had a craving for Chili's Chicken Fried Chicken, so I made me and my brothers that for lunch today. Except the chicken was marinated and grilled instead of breadcrumb coated to make things healthier. Served with low-fat garlic mashed potatos, gravy, corn on the cob and paprika garlic bread. It's not Chili's, but it was close enough.

Looks quite alright, doesn't it? I think i have garlic breath now. Eugh! Need....dessert....help.....!

Ok gonna go watch Braveheart now for dessert (takleh makan banyak2 nanti gemuk). Can you believe I haven't seen that movie? Freedommmmm!!!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Exercise and Music

While Googling for "music for exercise" for ideas for my exercise playlist...i found many articles like this:


COLUMBUS, Ohio – It's no secret that exercise improves mood, but new research suggests that working out to music may give exercisers a cognitive boost.

Listening to music while exercising helped to increase scores on a verbal fluency test among cardiac rehabilitation patients. [more...]

No wonder I've been feeling smart lately. Ha ha ha ha...!

Anyway, here's my exercise playlist...the songs are slower now that I'm weaker post stem cell transplant. This takes me to about 1/2 hour per session...although maybe I only go up to 15-20 minutes:

  • Ray Charles - Mess Around
  • Ray Charles - I've Got a Woman
  • Al Green - How Can You Mend A Broken Heart
  • Ray Charles - Hit the Road Jack
  • Alicia Keys - If I Ain't Got You
  • Alleycats - Hingga Akhir Nanti
  • Jordis Unga - Knockin' on Heaven's Door
  • Peter Pan - Mungkin Nanti
  • Spider - Relaku Pujuk

Friday, August 19, 2005

Menu Untuk Hari Ini

Garlic Rosemary Chicken (Lunch)

It doesn't look very appetizing, huh? Since I'm just eating it myself, I couldn't be bothered with garnishes and stuff. Plus I can't eat uncooked garnishes, so I don't see the point. Hmm maybe I should've put some olives in there for color.

I'm feeling quite alright today, feel a bit lighter, less puffy. Maybe it's the lasix, maybe it's the ice-cold cotton that i put all over my face last night. Must exercise tomorrow to get rid of the excess fat I've accumulated, on top of the water.

Ahh what a boring day...I'm gonna watch The Wizard of Oz now, delivered by eflix a half hour ago.


4 1/2 hours later, for dinner...I decided to try this again for me and my brothers.

Ini baru Chicken Parmesan! (Since yesterday's attempt was unsatisfactory). That empty space on the plate is where the planned garlic toast was supposed to be, but I got lazy after having to make the tomato sauce myself. Mum wouldn't let me use Campbell's canned spaghetti sauce (too much preservatives and sodium for me).

Now I can sleep in peace, and stay off chicken parmesan for the rest of the month. Will probably have something healthier like tuna or fish tomorrow. I can already feel my ass expanding from all the cheese. Burp!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Which Famous Leader are You?

I'm Abe Lincoln..though it is not my desire to become an assasination victim.

Tried my hand at making chicken parmesan once I arrived home from the clinic...the chicken itself was good. But I think i made a mistake of drowning the chicken in the spaghetti sauce instead of putting just a small layer on the chicken to make the gravy. This is what happens when you try to "belasah" stuff like Jamie Oliver, when you are in fact, NOT Jamie Oliver. ha ha ha. Anyway, masak sendiri, makan sendiri...kira cincai lah.

at the clinic

Long day at the hospital. Arrived at 8.15 am for blood test, then went for my CT scan. Am now at the clinic, getting my immunoglobulin medication. My blood counts are getting better, though my liver has become toxic since two of my many medications have adverse reaction towards my liver. So the doc reduced my dosage of one med, the ciclosporin to 3/4 of the normal dose.

Aargh, this hospital is so noisy! The security guard blowing away his whistle like nobody's business! He thinks he's the traffic police kat Bulatan Pahang ke? Then there's a car whose alarm has been off for the past 15 minutes! It has one of those annoying sounds that changes, ninoninonino-piaupiaupiaupiau-neeneeneenee-woowoowoowoo... Takda bunyi yang elok sikit ke? Lambada ke, Macarena ke...entertaining la jugak. Please shut the f*** up!! Argh!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

eflix review

i've been renting from eflix since the past week, and it's awesome! i'm still on the free trial, but i think i might continue the service, at least until i start work again.

for RM48/month, u can rent as many movies as you want, for as long as you want. the best thing is they deliver! the only problem is you might want to have someone at home to accept the delivery if you're at work. otherwise you can go pickup the DVDs/VCDs at their shop in Desa Sri Hartamas.

now they only have 3,500 titles, compared to netflix, who carries like 50,000 titles. but i guess that'll do for the time being.

perfect service for a bum like me.

now when is One Utama going to have a virtual shopping mall? wouldn't mind that at all.

Silence of the lambs...

Gambar menakutkan di pagi hari. Hannibal Lecter on the prowl. Sempat lagi nak pakai cold eye mask while chatting on the Internet. haha...

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

All is puffy on the western front...

I seriously look like this today. Without the thorny bits, of course! Aaaaaaargggghhh!

Went to the doc yesterday for a regular follow up. My total white is normal, a bit of anemia, and platelets a tad low, but nothing too much to worry about. I just told the doc how uncomfortable it is to be puffy (in the face, legs and torso), so he gave me some Aldactone to reduce it. Aldactone is supposed to remove the excess water while conserving the potassium in my body (my potassium level was a bit low last time). I took it, but somehow it didn't work! I'm supposed to be going to the bathroom every few minutes to get the water out, but after taking the pills yesterday, I was just going at my regular daily rate. Trying again today. Note to self: don't much too much of the Arnott's pizza cookies, might contain too much salt.

I bought an eclipse machine yesterday. Will arrive on Thursday...we shall see how long I will be using the machine before it turns into a towel hanger, yea? hahahahaa...

Better try putting a cold towel on my face, maybe that'll reduce the swelling...seriously, my glasses feel tight on my face right now, I'm afraid it might break!

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Weekend Project(s)

(A) Understanding the Rubik's cube. I always get stuck at the bottom layer.

(B) My quest for american cheese, to make myself a philly cheese steak. The cheddar cheeses they sell in the supermarket are too milky for a philly cheese steak. Know where I can get some?

(C) Project Homemade Burger

Mix minced meat, 1 egg, sauteed red onions, breadcrumbs, mixed herbs, cumin seeds (a small pinch), salt and black pepper in a bowl. Make into patties. Pat extra breadcrumbs to prevent the patties from sticking to each other. Fry. Put into a burger bun with a slice of cheese. Eat. Wanted to make some fries, but decided that the carbo from the burger bun would be enough for me.

Sorry lah takde gambar coz I was so hungry I couldn't be bothered to get my camera...it tasted pretty good. The meat was a tad overblended that it didn't really have the texture of proper minced meat. I would skip the cumin next time though.

My kaki so sakit and swollen from standing in the kitchen. I better put my feet up before the edema gets worse.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Side Effects of Prednisone

Man...taking the prednisone is really making me uncomfortable. I hope the doctor stops this medication soon. I feel really sluggish, bloated, a blah most of time time although I try to be cheerful. Looked up the web and found a list of prednisone side effects and how to cope, though they might effect different people differently. Here's what i found:

  • Allergic reaction - no
  • Increased blood pressure - sometimes
  • Sudden weight gain - yes!
  • Insomnia - yes
  • Nausea, vomiting or stomach upset - sometimes
  • Fatigue or dizziness - sometimes
  • Muscle weakness or joint pain - sometimes
  • Problems with diabetes control - no
  • Increased hunger or thirst - yes
  • Acne - no
  • Increased hair growth - no
  • Thinning of the skin - yes
  • Easy bruising - yes
  • Cataracts - no
  • Glaucoma - no
  • Osteoporosis - not sure
  • Roundness of the face (moonface/chipmunk cheeks) - yes
  • Changes in behavior/moodiness - yes


  • Exercise
  • Protein rich diet
  • Calcium rich diet
  • Vitamin D
  • Avoid concentrated sugar
  • Potassium
  • Lower salt intake to reduce water retention
  • Lower carbohydrate intake

Wanna go get that exercise machine now. The haze has cleared up a bit, I can see. Should be safer to go to the shop for a few minutes to arrange for the delivery.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Cerita Paling Bosan Dalam Dunia

Verdict...tengok Lady Boss lagi baik. It took me two days to finish this movie.

Random Stuff on Friday


The weather at 9 o'clock in the morning shouldn't be like this!! I feel like going away for the weekend. Where in Malaysia can I go where there's no haze? Just looking outside the window is making my breathing constricted already.

I pity my cats, Alf, Cookie, Mr Frodo and Owen. They have to sit out there in the cage inhaling the dirty air. Wish I could setup a little air purifier for them outside. They look so tired, just lying there in the cage. I told them to drink lots of water (if they understand me, that is. haha).

Speaking of cats, yesterday while I was sitting at the day care center chatting with another fellow leukemia patient, we somehow got into the topic of pets. I told him that I have cats at home, at one of them has skin cancer (Cookie). Btw, Cookie's starting to bleed again...poor kitty. Then he suddenly launched a theory about how maybe Cookie's sick to take away some of my sufferings. He told me that he has a Flowerhorn at home that also became sick a short while after he was diagnosed with CML. Hmm..i never thought of it that way, it's quite logical hehe. I've heard about the thing where your pets will pray for your "kemurahan rezeki" for taking care of them, but this one is new. If his theory is right, thanks Cookie for sharing the sickness with me, although you didn't have to.

What else do I want to say on this hazy Friday morning? Ah...here's a picture of the giant medicine Ciclosporin. The length of the medicine is a bit more than the diameter of a 20 sen coin. Horror tak? I have to take two of these, twice a day..uwek!

Ok lah...gonna go make some banana pancakes for breakfast.

1 hour later....

Had my banana pancake. it was good, but I now realize how I managed to go on for 5 years without cooking anything in my mother's kitchen, other than the odd roti bakar and peanut butter sandwich. While I was trying to fry my pancakes, there were three other people standing around me, trying to grab the ladle from my hand because they think I'm doing it wrong. That's how I managed to live for 5 years without knowing where anything is in the kitchen. I don't even know where the Nescafe is. Someone makes it for me.

I've got to get me own kitchen.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Day +31

Went for another follow up today and also to get my IV IGG (Immunoglobulins). Potassium a bit low, but will top that up with loads of bananas this weekend. My counts are OK, WBC 4.4, Hb 10.3 and Platelets 47.

Nice to spend time at the clinic...it's becoming like a social affair for me. Hang out there and chat with the other day care patients. Haha...

I'm hating the haze (who doesn't). Everything looks so yellow! Feel like I'm in CSI Miami all the time....aaarggghhh haze go away!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

An Urge To Shop Part 2

Oooh yeah...I'm RM140 poorer and feeling 100% better. Giant Mall pun Giant Mall lah...the haze is awful, don't think I'll be going out again any time soon. At least until the haze clears. Those poor school children waiting for their school buses...they shouldn't be allowed in school..in fact nobody should be out!

Retail therapy is good. Got some magazines, VCDs (Tentang Dia and Lady Boss heheh), a couple of snow caps to cover my head, a shirt and some snacks. Went to look for micro hi-fis, but didn't realize they're so expensive! Might settle for a mini-compo instead...

My ankles are now a bit swollen from walking. Better rest now.

An Urge To Shop

i've been at home for almost a week now. and I'm getting so bored. I wake up early, catch up on office gossip, exercise for a bit, and then I have nothing to do. I'm tired of watching TV...I don't know what else to look for on the net, nobody wants to play Star Wars Monopoly with me at home and reading makes me woozy most of the time. I'm trying to re-learn French and Italian, but listening to the people speak on the tapes is also not the most exciting activity on earth.

So when I'm bored...i think about what else I could buy to minimize the boredom. A new oven so I can start cooking my big recipes? An iPod Mini? A blender? Some magazines? An exercise machine? Recipe books with nice pictures? A Fiat Coupe (red) for myself? Or maybe a Volvo S40T? At this rate, anything is possible.

After a half-hour of wondering, I think I may want to get a new mini Hi-fi. Mum and dad can have my old one (the one I bought with my first salary). I want a new one that looks sleek, can play CD-R/RW, MP3s and things like that. The ones in the Sen Heng website look pretty nice. I hope they're not too expensive.

And perhaps get some Korean TV series at the video store. Any suggestions (other than Winter Sonata, please)?

Am gonna go shower. Maybe can pursuade mum to drive me to the shop when it opens so there won't be too many people.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Hunger Pangs

Overall good day. I've been feeling hungry all day tho. Had a load of rice with crispy fried little bawal fish and sambal belacan. Then had an ice cream...and a little piece of chocolate. Then had a piece of fried banana and a nescafe ice. I'm still hungry...my God i hope the steroids is not going to make me fat.

Listen to me!!! When I couldn't eat..i complained. Now that I'm constantly hungry...i complain even more. When I'm well, I think I will be a master complainer.

Downloaded some pizza dough recipes today..mum wanted to make pizza, but we discovered that the little toaster oven brother got from rewards redemption can't do it. We need to get a proper oven. Got some frozen flour tortillas (frozen capati sebenarnye) in the fridge..might make a quesadilla instead for dinner.

I'm hungry...help...bro also got some sticky toffee cheesecake from Tesco...mmmm, shall have that for dessert.

Oh..did i tell you about my ice milo dinosaur last night? I finally made it...with a blender and all. The blender was the real dinosaur..mum said it was a gift for her and dad's wedding. Imagine that!

From Tolkien to Reza to me

had a little chat on yahoo with a friend Reza this morning, and he read me this from Tolkien, which i thought was beautiful, and it touched me:

All that is gold does not glitter
Not all those who wander are lost
The old that is strong does not wither
Deep roots are not reached by the frost

From the ashes a fire shall be woken
A light from the shadows shall spring
Renewed shall be blade that was broken
The crownless again shall be king..

Now i'm ready for some yoga..till then.

i miss my friend I

I, my friend of almost 10 years went for holiday in NZ after her last day at work last week. She's my link to most gossips, be it office, friends, etc.

Realized that I haven't chatted with her in many many days. Woi bila kau nak balik ni.....!

Not that I think she would be reading my blog while in NZ, but I thot she should know that I'm feeling lost without her goss.

Hehe. Have fun girl.

ps: I finally got my copy of Harry Potter. Ada difference ke adult edition and the children's edition? I looked up the book in Amazon and found an Unabridged version. Wtf? I'm still reading it...so far Half Blood Prince's reading more like Half-Baked Potter.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Day +28 - First Checkup

My first checkup since I was discharged. Things are looking good. My counts are up. Today's counts total white 5.5, Hb 10.4 and platelets 50,000. My next checkup is Thursday.

Doc reduced my prednisone to 20mg BD...so hopefully i'll be off the prednisone soon, hence no more chipmunk cheeks. Then he said that the Ciclosporin (anti-rejection medicine) may cause some coarse hair to grow around my neck...is that like a beard doc? oh-oh...anyway we'll see..hope not.

Otherwise, nothing much...he advised me to get a stationery bike to exercise at home...after hospital, went to spend about 15 minutes at Guardian pharmacy sniffing shower creams. i had to store away all my nice smelling shower gels at home coz it makes me nauseous! Settled with Simple's shower gel...nice no smell moisturizing shower gel..

I'm home now, had my shower, and I'm hungry...I feel like having a philly cheese steak..but mum's frying me some fish downstairs..i guess that'll do. While driving pass Giant, saw a Ramly burger stall...my god that was tempting!

Ok la...looks like i'm rambling like a rabbit. Don't worry I'm ok. I'm just so happy my counts are up! Alhamdulillah..

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Day +27 and doing OK.

Good morning! And a happy Sunday! AF3 concert....what else could be said? It was kind of boring and expected, but I guess everybody knew that already. The lovely Z came over with four Cornettos, and we watched the show with brother, grandma and mum. I wished so hard that Amylea would win either the best vocal or the best performance, but I guess if you left the judging to the audience, there's no chance in the world that the prizes would go to her. So off Mawi goes, RM26,000 richer in cash, a car and apartment owner. All the best to him. My next project is to download all the songs that Amylea sang through the concerts and make a CD compilation.

I've made little alarms on my mobile phone to spread out my medicine intake, after my vomiting episode late last night. Perhaps taking them all at once is a bit too much for me...strange thing was I could do it when I was in the hospital! Anyway here they are:
  • 08.30 AM - Prednisone
  • 10.30 AM - Ciclosporine (you won't believe the size of this..i'll post a picture soon)
  • 12.30 PM - Antibiotics, Iron Pills and VFend
  • 04.30 PM - Prednisone #2
  • 06.30 PM - Ciclosporine
  • 10.30 PM - Antibiotics, etc.

Overall feeling a bit more energetic, just a bit. I'm not liking the heavy feeling when I have to go up the stairs or walk. Before my transplant, I used to be able to run up and down the stairs. These days I feel mostly "sembab" (what's sembab in English?)...sluggish, is it? I try to walk a bit inside the house (no going out yet because of the haze), watch my cats from the window, but otherwise I mainly sit in front of the TV or computer watching something.

Couldn't sleep last night. Keep wanting to go back to Pittsburgh, for some reason. I wrote down a list of food I had when I was in Pittsburgh, and realize how much I miss it. Maybe the food's not even there anymore! I even miss grocery shopping in Giant Eagle Squirrel Hill. Some people miss being in New York, or London. For me, it's Pittsburgh, baby! Am gonna type out the list later.

Got Z to go out today and get me a copy of Harry Potter - Half Blood Prince. Hope that will occupy some of my time as well.

Ciao for now.

Saturday, August 06, 2005


was wondering what the difference is, since k ida mentioned it...Googled it up and found this on wikipedia:

"Prednisone is a synthetic corticosteroid drug which is usually taken orally and can be used for a large number of different conditions. It has a mainly glucocorticoid effect. Prednisone is a prodrug that is converted by the liver into prednisolone, which is the active drug.

Prednisone is particularly effective as an immunosuppressant and affects virtually all of the immune system. It can therefore be used in autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases (such as asthma and Crohn's disease), various kidney diseases including nephrotic syndrome, and to prevent and treat rejection in organ transplantation." [..more..]

and that will be my public service announcement of the day.

now this is what I call yummy..!

This is Ice Milo Dinosaur - found it on a Singaporean food site. According to Najah, this is quite popular in Singapore. I've only ever found it in one shop in PJ. It's actually iced milo or ice blended milo, topped with loads of milo powder...and whipped cream (if you like). Am going to go down to see if I can make this, see if this goes down my throat well.

Yum yum..


wishing i look like this....but i'm also glad that God has been kind and I'm still alive today. :-)
picture from Egotastic!

Friday, August 05, 2005

i obviously have nothing much to do

2 hours..and another blog post.

i have attempted to eat. sardine sandwich and an iced cappucino..which went down my throat with absolutely no taste. when will this go away? i expected everything to become normal once i got home yesterday, but so far it's just a big dream of mine.

the prednisone is also making me look like popeye...or some would say, a chipmunk. i'm going to avoid looking in the mirror for sometime now, i think.

ok...what happened to my cooking plan? I'm going to wait until i get my taste back. right now i have a list of things i want to do all at once so i have to plan them out:
  • watch Naked Chef
  • watch Futurama
  • watch TV
  • write out my thesis proposal

but all i'm doing now is chatting in Yahoo Msgr with a bunch of friends...

oh dang...i gotta go take those medicines...i forgot! till the next few hours...


question: has anybody out there tried eFlix? Is the service any good?

home sweet home

huh....good morning! streamyx is good...it's so much faster than what i had in the hospital, that I finished all my necessary blog readings in 10 minutes. now i don't know what to do. probably bum around the house and watch some malay drama today.. i feel a bit woozy...like i can't walk properly, like i can't lift my legs properly when I walk. don't know why.

to friends who'd like to visit me, gimme a couple of weeks to stabilize (and re-establish) myself at home. don't bother with the flowers yea, I'm not allowed to have them around the house.

my cats have gotten FAT!!! especially the skinny Mr Frodo...oooh i feel like hugging him! (brace yourself!) Cookie the one with skin cancer also gained some weight..and she looks fine!

bye for now!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

i'm still at the hospital, feeling extremely flabby..

it's 5PM and they just finished handing me over my bills, mc, discharge documents and medications. lucky i waited till late to have a shower or I would've gotten pissed waiting. i put on normal clothes today after 30 days of wearing those baggy green hospital clothes, and realized how flabby i've gotten. I only gained a net of 0.5 kg throughout my stay here, but how could i have gotten so flabby? this calls for serious exercise when i get home, and as discussed with Najah just now, perhaps a cup of coffee to get all the excess water out a.s.a.p.! Or else all my hopes of learning to cook will fly off the window...help!!

Day +24

Alhamdulillah, today I will be discharged. I've been in the hospital for exactly a month and a day now, 24 days post transplant. The doctor said that the chest x-ray looks clear, so I can go. I still have some cough on me, so I'm praying hard that it doesn't get worse like the lung infection I had in January. I'll just have to come back next Monday at the the clinic for follow up.

Many plans for when I get home. On my priority is to learn to cook the recipes I've collected during my month in the hospital and start a new proposal for my MBA thesis. After a year of leaving work, I doubt that my last proposal is still relevant due to the changes that have happened at work. So i'm choosing a topic outside of work instead so I won't be bound by what happens there.

Other big plans. To watch what I eat. To exercise. To get back to work as soon as the doctor will let me. Tentatively before/after raya, but as for now it's still less than a month post transplant and there are still many uncertainties. So we'll see how it goes. :-)

Will write from home later! (After I get bored catching up on the shows on Discovery Travel, yeah?) Bye.

ps: Updates from Mobilemom's hubby on her surgery have been good ones, Alhamdulillah. Way to go Mobilemom & MaleNurse!

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


they better let me home tomorrow...i'm hungry! i want home cooked food! perhaps something that I cook myself! murtabak maggi...murtabak maggi...

Day +23

Yes! No more i/v medications! I asked the doctor if i could take out my drip line so the vein can heal over the weekend. Who knows, i might need a vein next Monday for platelets or blood or whatever the need to give me when I go for my next checkup. So for now, my hands are free!

Feel a bit groggy today, but it's probably because I still haven't washed my face since I woke up this morning....(eww i know) I'm so lazy. In the afternoon I had my x-ray, but I'm not sure what the results are yet. Perhaps I'll know tomorrow and the doctor can let me go. AF3 finals here I come! Although I think we all know who will win already, yeah? I'll just watch for the fun of it.

Speaking of AF3, what is this i hear in the news about the DPM's comments on reality shows? Chill out la, what's the biggie? It's not like they're showing anything too bad. It's entertainment (or irritainment for some), so let it be la. Don't they have any other issues to talk about anymore? Or...have I been missing any interesting 'westernized' local reality shows while I'm here? If so...tell me, and I shall watch. he he he..

Watching some holiday show on TV now. I think I need a holiday lah.....hmm.

bye for now.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Day +22

...thanks to Lyds for counting.

Feeling good today. I'm starting to have some nausea...probably due to the Ciclosporin (anti-rejection steroid). I can stand the pills, but they just leave a weird aftertaste that bothers me. It's not a bad taste, it's like a sweet, milky taste that makes me nauseous every once in a while. They pills are damn huge too! About the size of 2/3 of your little finger, if you have medium sized fingers like mine. Apart from that I have to swallow like 9 other tablets (calcium, magnesium, antifungal, antibiotic, more steroids), since the doctor is tapering off all my i/v medications.

The Sister from the Bone Marrow Transplant Ward came to visit with one of her Staff Nurses today. Just to see how I'm doing in the other ward. Gave me some advice for before i leave, regular stuff like:
  • watch my food
  • don't go near my cats (if possible give them away). my answer: a firm no. The way i see it, I took on a responsibility of the cats. They will stay for as long as we can manage it. Alright..alright...i won't go near them!!
  • don't go near flowers
  • don't push myself even when I think I'm strong enough

She also informed me that she and the doctor have actually read my in-patient comments and noted that they will try to make the changes. Oh shucks! What did I write in there? I know I wrote quite a bit (not just ticking the boxes but added more comments underneath)...only because I thought nobody was going to actually READ it! I was also high on the morphine at that time. I hope i didn't sound like a royal ass expecting VIP treatment here. But if I know myself, i probably wrote some nice, sensible comments in there.

Has anybody seen the movie Ray? The story of Ray Charles, starring Jamie Foxx. I love it! Unfortunately, the movie got stuck somewhere in the middle..which sucked. I'll have to get it exchanged when I go home. I'm making do with Seinfeld Season 2 right now. Better call mum to bring me more supplies. She went home to make me some spaghetti...mmmm.


all the best, Mobilemom!

Couldn't sleep thinking about Mobilemom's surgery in Sydney today. (macam surgery aku plak!) anyway, all the best to you, dear. We're all thinking of your success!

Monday, August 01, 2005

Inikah Cinta

Just saw a new drama on TV1 called Inikah Cinta, directed by Rashid Sibir. Starring Nasha (gorgeous as always), Ako and Fahrin. Cheesy in a modern sense, i bet it's about a love triangle that develops among the 3 colleagues. They're successful, beautiful and drive awesome cars. I'm hooked, y'all. Or maybe i'm just easily pleased, being in the hospital and all. But really, i haven't seen a malay drama that i want to see again since Kutub Utara Kutub Selatan. Heehee..!

day +lost count

The drips connected to my hands makes me lazy to type stuff out. I felt some more dizzines this morning, and decided to snap out of it. Walked a bit around the room, and sat up instead of lying about the whole day. The iv drips are a nuisance due to my small veins, but i'm banking on going home in the next few days so i can go maintenance free. Ok they're going to give me some weird breathing medicine now. Later!