Monday, February 29, 2016

Red: Lucky red

Red is a lucky colour for the Chinese. I wore my red dress to my local Chinese New Year dinner, and I won a beautiful red pot of bromelaid.

May 2016 be a lucky year for my writing.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Red: Kapit

KAPIT: Last Thursday and Friday saw river transport at a standstill as wooden debris clogged Baleh and Rajang rivers which adversely affected navigation from Sibu to Putai, a distance of some 300km.

JOURNEY INTERRUPTED: Four days after the massive wood debris laid a siege on Baleh River and Rajang River, the water at the upper reaches of Baleh is still muddy. Many outboard engine owners claimed that their engines were spoilt due to the sand and silt.
This massive logjam along Malaysia’s longest river was a cause of grave concern and drew wide-spread discussion and speculation on the causes, especially in Facebook and other blogs on the Internet, thus getting the attention of foreign media and environmental groups.
A man from Sungai Melatai, a tributary of Baleh River, gave the following account of the cause.
“The cause of the ecological disaster and the extensive environmental damage has nothing to do with the rain or rising water level because on the day it happened the water level along Baleh River was low and normal. There was extensive landslide of between five and 10km on both banks of Sungai Melatai. This has nothing to do with farming activities. It is caused by human disregard for the environment through extensive logging activities.”
A child died when its mother could not send it for medical treatment in Kapit due to the logjam. Two men in a Land Cruiser died in the landslide.
“We are very angry but helpless, it is time we wake up to protect our environment,” a teacher who was a relative of the mother said.
A bank employee said political leaders should not blame the weather and appealed to the government to engage an independent body to investigate and get to the root cause because the people deserve to know the truth.
A retired army personnel and a fish breeder from Sungai Sut, who wanted to be known as ‘Robert’, lamented that many types of indigenous fish had died along Sungai Melatai to Sibu, depriving the people of their source of income and protein. According to Tuai Rumah Kilau who returned from Tunoh to Kapit on Friday morning, the massive riverbank erosion was caused by the eruption of dykes formed by sediments, wood and other debris caused by long periods of logging activities.
When contacted, the Superintendent of Land and Survey Kapit Affin Bawi said the massive landslide was the culprit. His view was confirmed by an officer from Sarawak Rivers Board.
An elderly casual worker identified as Jilan explained that the Ibans described the phenomenon as ‘baruas’ or massive landslide affecting a huge area, when nature gives way.
“All the fish would die and in my young days I used to follow my parents in the longboat to catch lots of fish that appeared on the surface”, he said.
The massive logjam prompted an onlooker to exclaim that one just could jump from one log to another to reach the other side of the river bank.
An elderly Chinese was heard murmuring to himself that this could be the first signal of ‘the end of the world’ because of massive destruction to nature caused by humans.
Among the many reasons, the phenomenon could be attributed to the heavy rainfall in the interiors of Kapit, particularly in Baleh, which had caused the river to burst its banks and grab debris and deadwood along the way.
But surprisingly a check at the Kapit waterfront revealed that the water level was low and the velocity of flow was very slow and normal.
On Friday, the situation returned to normal. The extent of damage it had caused to the shipping industry is yet to be ascertained.

alternative food for monarch caterpillars.

There is a shortage of swan plants/

Gomphocarpus physocarpus/ swan plant

. Some schools are asking for donations of the plant which the Monarch butterflies eat.  My local garden Centre King's barn even gave plants free to families to grow in their garden.

sharing from Judy Lee with permission. Here she is feeding the monarch caterpillars with cucumber and pumpkin.
Last year, we had a shortage of swam plant, Gomphocarpus physocarpus/ swan plant
. Some schools are asking for donations of the plant which the Monarch butterflies eat. My local garden Centre King's barn even gave plants free to families to grow in their garden.
Thanks, Lee Judy, I will past on this information to New Zealand. Just cut thin pieces of pumpkin and slices of cucumbers and courgette.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

flowerinbg flapjack. Kalanchoe thyrsiflora or flapjack.

My family knows my passion for sharing photo. Grace was driving along at the Gold Coast when I spied this plant. She kindly stopped so I could take this photo.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Thursday Challenge: Sweet Donut.

"SWEET, 2nd week of 2" (Candies, Sugar Bowls, Cakes, Treats, Honey,...)
Next Week: CLOTHES (Outdoor, Indoor, Formal to Fun...)
roseThursday Challenge is a place for photographic fun and learning. A theme is announced on this site each week. You may either take a new photograph related in some way to the theme or select one that you have taken previously;

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Monday, February 15, 2016

Red: Lunar New Year.

Lion Dance at a dinner,

Thursday Challenge: Lots

We often travel west from Auckland to Muraiwai beach to see the gannet colony. Australasian Gannets migrate from the north to nest in dense colonies on small islands and jutting cliffs with most being in the North Island of New Zealand.

In 1979 the Auckland Regional Council (then ARA) established the Takapu Refuge with the help of the Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society.

Gannets come in early spring. The males usually arriving first. After breeding and once the chicks have fledged and left the nest, they fly north. The mature adult birds tend to be sedentary, only fishing over inshore sea close in to the coast.

One sad story about the cruelty of nature, the old and the laggards are left to die while the rest fly off back to the north. Once, we went in April, and there were dying birds and carcases. Even the realistic me felt a lump in my throat.

There are two other mainland colonies at Cape Kidnappers and Farewell Spit at the top of the South Island.
"LOTS" (A great quantity of anything...)
Next Week: SWEET (Candies, Sugar Bowls, Cakes, Treats, Honey,...)

Thursday, February 11, 2016

FSO: Love is in the air

When I saw this couple,
I realise this is the epiphany of what love is.

In the lovely park of Western Springs,
the sun was shining,

He was in a scooter
and she, sitting on the bench with a walking frame.

They epitomized what love is all about.

They were even older than the Beatles' when I am 64
When I'm Sixty Four (64)
~ The Beatles

When I get older losing my hair,
Many years from now.
Will you still be sending me a valentine
Birthday greetings bottle of wine.

If I'd been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door,
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

You'll be older too,
And if you say the word,
I could stay with you.

I could be handy, mending a fuse
When your lights have gone.
You can knit a sweater by the fireside
Sunday mornings go for a ride.

Doing the garden, digging the weeds,
Who could ask for more.
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

Every summer we can rent a cottage,
In the Isle of Wight, if it's not too dear
We shall scrimp and save
Grandchildren on your knee
Vera, Chuck & Dave

Send me a postcard, drop me a line,
Stating point of view
Indicate precisely what you mean to say
Yours sincerely, wasting away

Give me your answer, fill in a form
Mine for evermore
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I'm sixty-four.

Celebrity Chef Michael Van de Elzen & Weet-Bix Create A Better Brekkie

Celebrity Chef Michael Van de Elzen & Weet-Bix Create A Better Brekkie

By Fleur Revell
03 February 2016
Star chef Michael Van de Elzen is on a mission to make breakfast a more exciting time of day. Co-host of the TVNZ series Kiwi Living, Michael has teamed up with Weet-Bix to inspire Kiwi families to eat a Better Brekkie.

Busy running his Auckland restaurant Boy and Bird, filming TV shows and writing cookbooks, Michael knows how it can often seem as if there isn’t time for breakfast. But he’s learnt the hard way that starting the day on a cup of black coffee doesn’t pay off.

“In my profession I work very long shifts,” he explains. “It takes its toll on you and I notice I do get cranky if I don’t eat breakfast.”

Michael’s secret weapon? “I keep a pack of Weet-Bix at work and my go-to breakfast is three Weet-Bix with frozen blackberries that have been roasted in the oven for five minutes then left to soak in their juices overnight. It’s absolutely my favourite thing.”

Growing up on a farm in West Auckland, there was always something tasty for Michael’s breakfast. His mother would make pancakes or her special fried eggs with a thin slice of gouda cheese on top. “Breakfast was a big thing in the Van de Elzen family,” he recalls. “We’d sit down together at the table and there would be lots of bread, fruit, cheese and always some Weet-Bix.”

Now a Dad himself, Michael has continued the tradition of an interesting, tasty breakfast for his daughters Hazel (5) and Ivy (3) “They get bored eating the same thing every single morning so the key is to keep changing it. I’m always looking for new ideas to fill the childrens’ breakfast bowls. The girls love Weet-Bix covered in hot milk with just a touch of cocoa powder on it - they think that’s a real treat. In summer we have smoothies made with banana, almond milk, cocoa powder and dates. For an on-the-go breakfast I crumble up some Weet-Bix to put in there too.”

Working with Weet-Bix on fresh ideas for wholesome and nutritious Better Brekkies, even Michael has been surprised at how versatile an ingredient the long-time breakfast favourite can be. “It makes a great, nutritious base and from there it’s so easy to build in the flavour.”

From a breakfast trifle and a wake-up shake, to Weet-Bix bircher muesli, porridge and pancakes, through his Better Brekkie recipes Michael has brought a chef’s flair to the first meal of the day. But his recipes are still quick, simple and family friendly.

“I want Kiwi children to wake up every morning and say, ‘Wow what’s it going to be today’.” says the TV chef.
For more information on the Better Brekkie see

Weet-Bix Wake-Up Shake
(Serves 2)
With all the goodness of bananas, dates and Weet-Bix, the Weet-Bix Wake-Up Shake delivers a source of iron and fibre.
•    2 Weet-Bix wheat biscuits
•    300ml So Good Almond Milk
•    1 banana
•    4 dates
•    1 tsp cocoa powder
•    1 tbsp chia seeds
1.    Place the Weet-Bix into a blender with the So Good Almond Milk and let soak for a minute to soften.
2.    Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth.

Weet-Bix Breakfast Trifle
(Serves 4)
Try Weet-Bix Breakfast Trifle for a treat that delivers fibre and fruit – while being just a little indulgent
•    1 cup frozen blueberries
•    1 cup unsweetened yogurt
•    4 Gluten Free Weet-Bix wheat biscuits
•    ½ cup toasted pecans
3.    Using a small saucepan, heat the blueberries and reduce for a couple minutes until thick.
4.    Take a glass (approximately 270ml) and start to layer your trifle, starting with ½ crushed Weet-Bix followed by a spoonful of yogurt, then the blueberry mix and pecans. Repeating once again.
5.    Finishing with a layer of the crushed pecan nuts. Sit for a few minutes to allow the Weet-Bix to soften before eating.

Written on behalf of Sanitarium by Impact PR

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

From the Mt Albert Baptist eNews.

The International Street Food Festival was a wonderful success. Thank you to all who supported the event by giving (time, effort, food, money) towards our missions partners and our International Pastor. Lots of people mixed and mingled, all the food was eaten and plenty of money was raised and we will give you the figure shortly. It was great to see unity in such a diverse community as we have at Mt Albert Baptist.

My pastor's wife asked if she could use this photo,(which I haven't seen) because it was a beautiful photo and it represents the diversity of our church. Kiri was born in Canada, and I was in university in Canada. 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

ann's book cv


Ann Kit Suet Chin-Chan.

Ann Kit Suet Chin is a New Zealand Chinese writer. She was born in Sibu, Sarawak, Malaysia. She attended Methodist Primary and Secondary School in Sibu. She graduated from Windsor University in Canada, Auckland University and Auckland University of Technology.

Ann is the fourth child of the late John Chan Hiu Fei and Mary Kong Wah Kiew. She is married to Chin Chen Onn, PhD. She has three surviving children, Deborah, Gabrielle and Sam. Her third child, Andrew died when he was a baby and is the inspiration of her first book.

作者 陈洁雪



Diary of a Bereaved Mother
ISBN 9780473187095 

This is a real life story of losing one's only son. This experience has made the author strong and caring. This tragedy has been a great help for her to help understand other bereaved people. The author is very brave to write this book. It has not been easy and she aims to touch,...

featured in the Aucklander.

I appeared in Television 1 Down Under program. It's ok to cry On baby bereavement.
I spoke in the Baptist Women's Annual Convention, North Island Chapter.  
My book was exhibited  at the Peacock 
Art Gallery, Upton Country, Dorset, Park England.

I  presented a workshop on Asian Infant Bereavement at the Sands National conference for Sands families and medical personnels for 200 attendees in September 2013

Used as a reference book for NICU staff at the University Hospital, Toronto. 

Dr Simon Rowley is a consultant at Starship Children's Hospital who's been given a copy of the book.
"It is a good reminder to all health professionals that when our patients leave us, the story does not end for the parents. The detail is amazing, and every little thought and action seems to have been recorded as it happened, and then has been reflected upon.
"For parents undergoing similar experiences this book could be a great comfort. For health professionals, I would see it as essential reading."



By Chin-Chan, Ann Kit Suet
ISBN 9780473239008  English
ISBN 9780473309626  Chinese


This is a hundred-year-old journal of two families, the Chans and the Kongs. It traces the first movement in 1907 from Kwang Zhou, China to the jungles of Borneo. It is a six-generational record with the second wave of movement to England, Canada, Japan, Singapore, Australia, USA ...

This book records with humor the life of a busy and active family through World War II, the formation of Malaysia and Confrontation. It is a personal reflection of a way of life that has moved on and provides insight into a family and its relationships. It is most of all a work of love and respect for the Chan and Kong families and for Father and Mother.

M M Ann Armstrong

Lodge International School
She explained the people in Sarawak, especially among the Chinese community, could relate to the book as it traces their roots and identities.
“From China to Borneo and Beyond kindled a lot of interests in the state. I am very happy to hear a publisher is going to print a Chinese version of it.”
From China To Borneo and Beyond was her second autobiography book, which is a hundred year old journal of two Families, the Chans and the Kongs. The book contains records of historical events and current affairs endured by her family from 1907 to 2006 such as the Opium war, virgin tropical jungle, the Japanese World War, colonial days, revelation and fighting with the communists. 



This book is about the embodiment of the darker side of today's society.
ISBN  978047325414-8

1 July 2013

a fiction novel – Mail Order Bride. The story, set in Auckland, New Zealand, touches on social issues such as teenage pregnancies, drugs, paedophile and the like. The book took two months to finish.

Her third book, Mail Order Bride is the first fiction piece from Ann. She said that the book targets an audience of young adults and that it appeals readers interested in social issues and ills that young adults have to face.



Women suffers from oppression. This story traces the life of Nadine who overcomes her own problems of oppression, grows up to be a social worker and helps women who have suffered from physical and mental violence, domestic violence, rape, pornography, swinging, sex slavery, human ...
1 July 2014
Interest Age
All ages

Judy Lawson, Counsellor
A book I would use in my work as a reference. 

World War II in Borneo, Tales of my Grandpa
ISBN:9780473339005 (Pbk)

It is seventy years after the end of the World War II, or the Japanese occupation in Borneo. Captain Cheng aka Captain Fong and his Canadian soldiers are remembered in their role of leading the surrender of the Japanese.

I've been reading your book World War Two in Borneo: Tales of my Grandpa.  I was a bit hesitant to start it, since it is combined fiction and fact and I didn't want to get the history mixed up in my mind.  However,  I'm finding it very compelling to read.  

Canadian documentary maker, Keith Lock.

Traces the lives of 2 girls. The poor girl is sold to the rich girl as a slave aka mui zai to serve her for ever. Different Chinese Tradition are explained, and tragedy brings them to the South Seas. The Japanese invasion, the slave protects her mistress and is sent to a brothel as a comfort women.