Hi! This morning I went to Queen Victoria Market to get these souvenirs for my respondents. Got about 200+ of them and six fridge magnets for my sister in law.  The key chains cost $10 for 5 packets, and I bought 35 packets in total.  I was contemplating between the clipping koalas/kangaroo but I reckon these key holders are more practical. 😉  In my humble opinion, the clipping koalas or kangaroos are getting too common in Malaysia nowadays.  I want to give my respondents something special, something that is rather ‘uncommon’ for the time they spent to participate in my study.

Some people argue that giving tokens are akin to ‘bribing’ respondents into participating into your research.  What say you? I believe it is a token for their time and for their contribution, period.  And you might think – whaaaaaaaat, only a key chain?  Well, it is a one and a half page survey, mostly close ended question and may take at most 10 minutes to complete.  And it is all they way from OZ, okay! (Oooohhh, I just hope that they will not be taken by the “Made in China” label somewhere on the key chain…).  Emo lah pulak aku nih, mcm orang menjengah kat blog nie pun. Hehehe. 

Oh, changed my mind about putting them in a padded bag. Although the bag is tough and able to hold the weight of the items, the nice lady at the post shop advised otherwise. Imagine, she said, a 20kg parcel is stacked on top of your parcel and we don’t provide fragile services…  With that caution, I decided to transfer them into a box which, according to the lady, is more reliable for the kind of consignment that I had in it. Anyway, the souvenirs are on their way to Kuching now and should be there between 3-5 days’ time.

With that out of my hand, Afyq, anjang is counting on you now! 


Iris poses in front of her kinder. The door opens 8.30am on the dot.

Iris poses in front of her kinder. The door opens 8.30am on the dot.

Exploring the school ground before entering the building.

Exploring the school ground before entering the building.  Ohhhh… a sand box!

Placing her bag and hat on the hook that she chose on the day of orientation.  It has her name on it and an image of a butterfly at the side.

Placing her bag and hat on the hook that she chose on the day of orientation. It has her name on it and an image of a butterfly at the side.


Educating them about diversity from young?


Tea party on the ground. Iris said one girl refused to let her in because only 3 persons allowed on the mat. She went to play in the sand box instead.

Yesterday, we went back to Roxburgh Park Superclinic for the second appointment for Iris’ immunization.  But first, we need to drop by at Chemist Warehouse at Broadmeadows Shopping Center to collect the vaccines.  According to the chemist, we can’t leave it in the car as the high temperature will definitely ruin them.  Plus, the temperature yesterday was insanely high – not that we are not used to the sun in Malaysia – but the heat here is totally different.  It is hot and dry, which makes it “panas yang menggigit” according to Din.  In Malaysia, it is hot and humid, therefore it is not as bad as the humidity will shield the raging effect of the sun.

Show this receipt at the counter, and the vaccines is all yours.

Show this receipt at the counter, and the vaccines is all yours.

The appointment was set at 1.30 pm and we arrived at 1:15 pm, immediately passed the vaccines to the staff at the counter for storage (as advised by Dr. Rahaman) and we waited.  Movies are shown on the LCD TV to occupy awaiting clients and in between, there are commercials related to health/life insurance, and one or two commercials on the danger of smoking (that day, it was about a doctor getting ready to amputate a patient’s gangrene foot – all thanks to nicotine).   Someone’s reaction towards that commercial was priceless!

Tak berani tengok, tapi nak tengok... Notice the blushing cheek because of the heat?

Tak berani tengok, tapi nak tengok… Notice the blushing cheek because of the heat?

Anyway, we were called in not long after that and Dr. Rahaman explained to us that he will prepare the summary of Iris’ immunization.  We could get hold of the record immediately.  Thank you, Doctor!  Since the jabs will be administered on both arms at the same time, two staffs attended to us.  They are professionals, and they have this motivating scripts that (I think!) they rehearse all the time to  ease the child’s fear.  The moment Iris stepped into the room, Nurse 1: “Hey, I think we are going to have a brave one today…”; Nurse 2: “Yeah, I can see that she is a strong and brave girl the moment she walked in through that door!”.  THAT girls, was a huge score!

There is a big chair in the room where the mother will sit, and the child is to be seated on the mom’s lap.  I was asked to hold her hands (not in the locking manner, but rather to comfort them) and on the count of 3, both nurses stick the needles in.  It was swift, and there was no cry from her.  In fact, she was elated that the whole thing is over and was so proud of herself for being brave.  She showed off the patches to her daddy and shouted, “Daddy, I did it!”  Similar to what we normally see on TV, the session was concluded with a couple of lollies and praises from the nurses.  To the two nurses who tended my girl yesterday, you are the best!  I can’t thank you enough for making the jabbing session painless – or rather, a memorable one for my daughter.

Had a lolly on her way home...

Had a lolly on her way home… The glare behind gives an indication of the heat that day.

We rewarded her with a small Slurpee on our way home, not only because of her accomplishment that day but because we know that she would appreciate something cold in the burning temperature.   From this experience, I can conclude that mental preparation is extremely important.  We explained to her the purpose of the jabs, which is to strengthen her body.  We also explained to her that without those jabs, she won’t be allowed to school.  I think the moral boost arrived when she learned that her good friend, Laila, has received the jabs as well and that she didn’t cry.  Peer influence, ma…  🙂   Anyway, until the next entry, bye everybody!

Enjoying a Slurpee as her reward.  Notice the patches on both arms?

Enjoying a Slurpee as her reward. Notice the patches on both arms?

Like I said in the previous entry; different country means different requirements.  In the case of immunization, there are additional jabs that Iris needs to take although she has fulfilled all the immunization recorded in her health card in Malaysia.  Up to date vaccination is vital for school requirement, and the details will be kept by the council.  Seeing a GP in Melbourne is nothing like in Malaysia.  Here, we need to set an appointment, turn up at the exact time at the clinic, see the GP, obtain medical prescription from the GP and with the prescription, purchase the medicine at the pharmacy.  The consultation fees will be covered by the health insurance, however the purchase of medicine must come from our own pocket.

On Monday, we went to Roxburgh Park Superclinic to obtain the details of Iris’ immunization.  It is located at 101 Ravenhill Boulevard, Roxburgh Park, Vic 3064.  Having being informed several times about the importance of getting the jabs (no matter how much she dreads it), Iris was mentally prepared to receive the needles.  See the smile?

Budak yang tak sabar nak kena cucuk... :)

Budak yang tak sabar nak kena cucuk… 🙂

The required documents during the visit to GP - must also include passport for photo ID.

The required documents during the visit to GP – must also include passport for photo ID.

The GP is none other Dr. Abdul Rahaman Pozan (also from Kuching).  Apparently Iris still requires two jabs (for rubella and for some other illnesses which I can’t recall) – to be given on another day once we get hold of the medicine. Apart from checking the requirement for immunization, Dr. Rahaman also checked her weight and height (which she adores very much!).  At the age of 4 years and 7 months+, she weights 18 kgs and measures 109cm.  Based on the growth chart (by Australian standard), she is doing OK.  Between the height and the weight, the doctor is more concern with the weight because height is usually inherited while the weight indicates nutrition intake.  Hmm, I didn’t realize that – a measure may outweigh another due to certain factors.

Oh ya, Iris was rather confused when we left the clinic without the “injections”.  Anyway, she is already looking forward to the next visit.  Here’s a look at the prescription. We decided to get them from Chemist Warehouse as their price is often lower compared to other pharmacies.  I was looking at $300.00 to $400.00 for the medicines and it turned out to be $87.70.  Whoa, what a relieve!  Whew! Anyway, they are ready for collection on Wednesday (6th Feb. 2013) and we have set an appointment for the jabs on the same day, after Iris’ schooling hours.  Btw, I am putting plural for the jab because both vaccinations will be administered on the same day. Sounds horrifying, no?  Be brave, darling! 

The prescription for the two vaccinations.

The prescription for the two vaccinations. One copy for the pharmacy and a copy to be sent to the council – by the chemist (so said the staff at the counter of Chemist Warehouse).

Lookout for this logo if you are searching for relatively lower-priced medicines and supplements in Australia.

Lookout for this logo if you are searching for relatively lower-priced medicines and supplements in Australia (Source:


The last entry for this blog is dated about a year ago and today, in the midst of rushing for the dateline, I had the cheek to upload an entry drafted about the same time; and it has been waiting to be posted since then.  And I finally did, later this evening before I left the office.

So many events took place during my absence (in the blogging world) and I don’t plan to put everything in here.  Perhaps I just pick some of the more memorable ones and one of them is my internal battle whether to send Iris to school before the end of this year. It happens 3 months back (about in February 2011).

The pressure originated from my mom who couldn’t stop comparing Iris’ progress with the other kids (in Miri) who are a few months my girl’s junior.  Occasionally over the phone she will ask me if I planned to send Iris to school because so and so’s son is already going; or so and so’s daughter already knows how to write…  And I often brushed her notion with the fact that Iris is doing well “home-schooled with Mickey Mouse”.  Well, she learns a lot from the program and her command in English sometimes amazes us.  Or when mom says that this or that girl can count 1-10 after going to school; I would respond “without attending school, Iris can do more just by watching Mickey Mouse, so what is the use of school?”  Ohhh, bad answer! Bad answer!

My negative attitude towards school only suggests that I am not willing to let her go off yet; because I feel she is still very young and I was afraid that she will be bored with school if we sent her too early.   As long as she hasn’t reach 3 years old, I’ll put the matter to rest.  For now, I’ll just let her learn from Mickey, Oso and Little Einsteins.

Playhouse Disney’s Mickey Mouse Clubhouse