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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

At my wits end

This is how I feel since yesterday. Keep staring at my screen and hoping I get an idea.

For two hours yesterday I sat down with Dr. R while he explained to me about the background of the data which I used for my research. He is the one responsible for generating all the spectral data. You might think that I should have known the inside out of my research by now. Well, I. AM. NOT. While I sat there listening and asking few questions, I felt like my brain has gone to information overload state. I felt like it soaked and soaked the explaination he offered. But now, I can't even decipher what I learned yesterday. I know my understanding of what I learned yesterday stucks somewhere in my brain. I just need to let it break free. It really irritates me to feel like this. So you see, my romance with my PhD is not all hearts and roses.

I need to incorprate some of the information that I got from Dr. R into the introduction part of my report. I haven't got my full report back from my supervisor except for the introduction part. My Oh! My, they want me to elaborate more on the objectives, contribution and novelty of my research. My report is due this Friday. YES! This Friday. And I'm just at my wits end to even add a word into that introduction section. Now I feel like crying and going to bed and not wake up until my introduction section magically writes itself.

Rabbi yassir wala tu a'ssir,
Rabbi atnim bil khoir

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Doodle Stiching -Gila Kraf II

my 1st try, no tracing whatsoever, just do as I go. ~ tengoklah senget benget tu

my 2nd try ~luruslah sikit sebab lukis paten sebelum stitch.
doodle stitch 1: @ both bottom corners of my fleece curtain~this is my own idea, no pattern at all :)
*click on the picture to see the type of stitch used*

I don't know what's gotten into me lately. I'm wasting my time looking at sewing blogs. Then I start planning in my head. Yeah! List of things I wanna sew. The list goes on and on. I want to make:
- tote bag& groceries bag.

- diaper bag from oil cloth(just in case if I do get pregnant next year)

- some dress for me ( I've bought a really nice shirt-dress & I like the way it feels when I wore it. I had my sister sent it to me from Malaysia. The postage costs more than the dress itself! So annoying! Thing is I can't seem to find a decent shirt-dress with a decent price here in UK. And that's like super duper annoying! Hence I think I better copy my favorite dress pattern and try to make one for myself. )

-baby changing mat, baby bib & other baby things (they look so cute & I do want to be a hip mummy so I kind of neeeed those things. Crazy me!)

I can't really jot down the list you see -Oh! I already have- because I don't even have a sewing machine. My hands are itching to sew something. Anything. Not that I am a sewist but I like sewing actually, hand sewing more like it. What I don't like is the list in my head won't go away.

I've already discussed with my husband that I plan to buy a used and cheap sewing machine. Cheap is the operative word here. I've searched E-bay and found none to my liking. My husband, a wise man he is, asks me to wait and save for a better sewing machine. Sure I can save but I don't know when I am going to be able to buy the kind of sewing machine he is talking about. The one which can do embroidery and has that little computer thing attached to it so you can download a pattern straight into the sewing machine. Hmmm....

So for now, to appease my cravings for sewing, I have to resort to doodle stitching and some other hand needle works/craft. I'm currently doodle stitching on our fleece curtain. I also have strings of crochet which I want to turn into a bag. And I have meters of vinyl cloth which I plan to make dinner set bags out of it. Made one before but my measurements screwed up somewhere so the bag does not close properly. I promised a friend I'll put up my dinner set bag picture here but I have to say 'NO' now as it doesn't turn out the way I picture it should.

doodle stitch 2: @ the middle of our fleece curtain.
~I saw a cross sticth picture in the internet, like it, so I sort of using that picture as guideline. But all the stitches used here are my own idea.
close up on the windows
*click on the picture to see the type of stitch used*

Oh! The house is not 100% done. I have yet to put some lingering plants on the brown fences (not seen in this picture) and probably couple of butterflies.

happy stitching!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Geordie dan Slangnya

Coming to Newcastle, UK in one way or another has made me realize that there is probably no correct way to pronounce English words. Grammatically, yes there are rules and guidelines that you have to follow. But pronounciation wise, A-ah, if you live in Newcastle or in Scotland, where the accent are quite thick, the pronounciation of some words are completeley off base. People from Newcastle upon Tyne is known as Geordie. (Kalau kat Malaysia, orang negeri sembilan kita panggil orang noghori). Hence their slang is known as Geordie slang/ Geordie dialect. Watch this L'oreal advert featuring Cheryl Cole to hear how does Geordie slang sounds.
(Note: Cheryl Cole is a celebrity in UK. She's from Newcastle).

I even found this website which provides Geordie slang dictionary.

On another note, not everyone who lives in the UK speaks English. If you go to Wales, they talk in a complete different language. Its not English. It's called Cymraeg -according to a source from Britannia. Err.. I don't know how to pronounce that.

Took this picture when I visited Wales last June. At Snowdon, Wales. See the words on the right hand side, try to pronounce that!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Gila Kraf

Kelmarin hari Sabtu, suami dan saya pergi ke Boundary Mill Shiremoor. Kononnya kami nak check out harga pinggan mangkuk keluaran Portmeirion, tapi bila tiba kat situ, salesgirl tu cakap diorg dah tak jual Portmeirion. Aiseh... terpaksalah kami pergi ke Stoke-On-Trent yg jauh itu kalau nak beli serving dishes Portmeirion yg cantik meletop tu. Itupun kalau ada sales, kalau tak 'Portmeirion Dalam Anganku' sajalah jawabnya.
Note: Stoke-On-Trent: kawasan perindustrian pinggan-mangkuk (pottery) di UK.

Satu perkara yang sangat best kat Boundary Mill Shiremoor ni ialah harga barang-barang kraftangannya. BEST SANGAT-SANGAT!!! Dengan designer papernya, designer ribbonnya, stickers, kerta-kertas yg bermacam gaya; ada kertas yg ada effect baldu, kertas yang boleh dihaluskan macam kita gosok papan dengan kertas pasir tu. Memang bermacam-macam. Oh! By designer paper I mean Laura Ashley's papers, Amy Butler's Papers & other top designers. Kebiasaannya kertas-kertas yg didesign oleh mereka ni sangat mahal. Jadi kalau saja-saja nak keronyok-keronyok, minta ampun maaf. Kalau sesiapa yang suka buat kad, kotak & kraf-kraf menggunakan kertas, Arts&Crafts section kat sini memang heaven.

Melambak pilihan, sampai tak terpilih. Cuma duit je batasannya.

Yummylicious designers' papers.

How I wish I can have all these stickers...
Hah! Kertas khas untuk boys pun ada :P

The Laura Ashely Collection (yg kat atas tu yg ada velvet effect tu)... delicious!

Saya betul-betul tak keruan memilih. Kalau ikut hati memang saya nak borong kertas-kertas yang cantik-cantik tu. Tengok kertas pun saya dah rasa bahagia. Tapi memandangkan 2 minggu lepas kami dah ke kedai bernama Hobbycraft dan saya pun beli sejilid designer paper, saya terpaksa menahan nafsu bershopping ini. Sadis! Demi untuk memuaskan hati, saya beli jugak stikers yg sangat comel, ada guli-guli kecil dalam stikers tu. Yummy!

Stickers that I bought. Sooo cute...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

You are A Worrier

-Pokok yg sangat cantik dekat Postgrad School Office. Bangunan Coklat tu tingkat bawahnya ialah Masjid Newcastle University-

I went to see both of my supervisors last Friday to submit the draft of my 1st year report. Thing is my report is very 'COMOT'. 'Comot' because I haven't list down my references, I haven't write up my abstract, some of the figures are incomplete i.e. no legend, and mostly because I have not finished writing on one topic-Principal Component Analysis (PCA). And yes, my grammar is everywhere. Huh!

I actually sent an e-mail to my supervisors the day before asking if I can postpone the submission date. She asked me to submit whatever I have at the moment. Hence the submission of the 'comot'report.

When my supervisors skimmed through my report, I was actually quite nervous and dreaded to hear their comments. Not that they are mean or anything. They are always nice, friendly and supportive to me. The first comments from both of them were:

SP1: You're a worrier.
Sp2: I don't agree. She's a TOTAL worrier.
~I am relieve to hear that actually :)

SP2: Nor, what are you trying to do? Finish your PhD in record time?
~WOW! That's a compliment. I was beaming inside but still worried that I have a lot of reading and understanding and simulation to do.

Me: I just have a scholarship for 3 years plus 6 months extension.
~I can apply for another 6 months extension after the 1st extension but the 2nd extension is without cost of living scholarship. I've walked that route before (during my master) and I am not going to take it again.

SP1: Well, what are you gonna do during your final year?
~I just smile and keep quiet. I'd like to say 'I'll go travel around Europe but that sounds dope isn't it? As if I have the mean to do that.

SP2: How long do you need the extension?
Me: I don't have much except the PCA and its case study to write up.
SP2: Alright, I'll e-mail the postgrad office and ask for 2 weeks extension.
~Actually, I wish for a month extension. But I don't want to propose something hideous like that won't I? Takpelah, 2 minggu pun cukup je sebenarnya. Bak kata Ani, "Kalau dapat sebulan tu, 2 minggu menjahit, 2 minggu lagi buat keje. Oh, yes! I've a new hobby, embroidering. Will share on that in my later post.

-The same tree as above-

I'm sharing this not because I'm proud of myself. Seriously, I don't feel proud at all. There are number of reasons why I stop myself from feeling 'on cloud nine'.
1- ANYTHING, I mean ANYTHING can happen along this journey. I pray to Allah for a smooth sailing.
2- If in the future I might have to apply for an extension due to whatever reasons, and some people might say something like, "Itulah dulu riak sangat". Even though I don't feel 'riak' at all.
3- I bear the responsibility of coming here with a background as a lecturer in a Malaysia's university. My supervisors are well informed about my background so if I don't give the best of impressions to them, what's left?

I'm just happy -well, extremely happy if I must say- that both of my supervisors appreciate my efforts and they like my work. Above all, I learn a very insightful lesson.

1- I want to be a better, nicer and supportive lecturer to my students (postgrad students' supervisor as well) when I go back home, just like both of my supervisors.
2- Praises can motivate people. When my supervisors praised my effort, I was delighted and am determine to perform much much better. So, I'll probably utilizing on this psychology technique on my students (and my children when I have them).
3- I hope to stay humble when appropriate. Well, there are situations where we need to give some attitude right? Hahaha...

Most importantly, I need to keep praying for Allah's guidance and help throughout my journey of PhD and journey of life. Also I have to keep praying so that my supervisors will stay supportive and nice to me.

Not to forget, my heartfelt gratitude to all of you who leaves constructive and supportive comments on my Shut The H*** UP post. I know thank you is not enough. May Allah bless us all.

Batuk Orang Lidi

Ini bukan gambar lukisan anak siapa-siapa. Ini hasil lukisan doktor yang saya jumpa minggu lepas. Masuk minggu ni dah 3 minggu saya batuk. Elok je macam nak sembuh batuk semula bila cuaca bertambah sejuk.

Minggu lepas selepas melihat saya menderita batuk, suami ajak (ala-ala paksa) saya ke klinik. Saya sebenarnya malas nak pergi klinik di UK ni ( di UK kami panggil GP-General Practitioner). Satu sebab je saya suka pergi GP. Kat GP ada banyak majalah hiburan&fesyen yang saya boleh selak-selak sambil tunggu giliran. Hahaha...

Awal tahun ni masa winter hari tu, saya pernah batuk teruk jugak. Jumpa doktor yg saya panggil doktor berjimat (Dr. J). Kenapa saya panggil dia Dr. Jimat? Sebabnya bila jumpa Dr. J, bukannya dia nak bagi prescription utk beli ubat. Lepas cek pernafasan saya dan pastikan saya tak ada asma, dia mula cerita pasal sejarah batuk. Siap dengan analogi pulak tu.

Katanya, batuk tu umpama penjahat. Bila penjahat datang menyerang tekak kita, antibodi dalam badan kita akan bertindak sebagai polis untuk menangkap penjahat-penjahat tu. Polis akan menang akhirnya walaupun mengambil masa.

Kata Dr. J lagi, "Your cough will heal itself. Take grandma's medicine. If you still want to buy cough syrup, don't buy it at the pharmacies. Go to ASDA, TESCO. Get the cheap one. They are the same."

Bawak bersabar jelah saya ni. Jadi minggu lepas tu bila suami nak bawa ke GP saya berat hati nak pergi. Kot-kot dapat Dr. J. Hemm... bila tiba giliran saya jumpa doktor, saya tengok nama yang terpampang kat depan pintu tu 'Dr. J'. Arrghh... rasa macam nak balik je. Tak yah jumpa pun tak apa. Buang masa je. Tapi saya masuk jugak. Seperti dulu jugak, cerita dia, nasihat dia, sama je. Cuma kali ni, saya minta hasil lukisan dia tu untuk share dengan korang.
Edit: Amalan tradisional untuk mengubati sakit tekak atau batuk:
1- Campurkan perahan lemon atau limau nipis (1/3-1/2) dgn sesudu madu dan air suam. Kacau & minum.
2- Larutkan 1/4 sudu garam dgn air suam. Kumur2 atau lebih tepatnya 'gargle' dgn air tersebut.
3- Larutkan pes asam jawa di dalam air suam. Campurkan sedikit gula batu. Minum.