The Lemon & Banana Boy!

Lemons are sour but this boy is sweet,

Ali’s his name, his cuteness can’t be beat!

Ali’s so sweet he makes sour lemons,

Sweeter than sugar, as sweet as a melon!

Ali love bananas, he loves them a lot!

He finds them so tasty, you should give them a shot!

This cute little boy just can’t live without

A banana a day, without it he’ll pout!

Bananas and lemons, both yellow in colour,

One is sweet, though, and the other’s sour…

But look what Ali’s done, it’s such a wonder!

He’s totally rocking this stylish T-shirt,

(the fruits are making me hungry for dessert!)

Bananas and lemons, who’d have thought,

Somebody could flaunt such a style?

The sweet with the sour, it just doesn’t click,

But Ali can make anything fit!

Ali, of course! His cuteness is great!

That and his new look, impossible to hate!

Bananas and lemons, sour and sweet,

Ali is WEARING them – isn’t that neat?

A poem by Omar Mukhtar a.k.a. The Pawsome Lion

Written for my little brother Ali!

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My Last School Report!

Is there such a thing as school-sick? Because if there is, then I am SCHOOL-SICK! This was my last school report, written by my class teacher, Miss Patrick. As you can see, it is very detailed! When I first received it, I was awed, not by the length of it, but by the fact that she didn’t miss a single detail about me! Just thinking about the amount of effort she put into it touched me! This is something that I will never forget. I will definitely treasure this forever! And in case you’re wondering, yes, that bouquet of flowers that Miss Patrick is holding was from me! 😊

Have a pawsome Wednesday,

Omar Mukhtar

a.k.a. The Pawsome Lionlast school report

miss patrick last day

Books, Glorious Books!

Holidays are the best times for you to READ! Don’t just sit around playing games, spend time with your nose in a phone or watch Netflix day in, day out! Make the most of that free time and get stuck in a good book! And if you’re travelling to spend the holidays someplace away from home, even better! Kill time by reading a book! Whether you’re on a plane, in a car, travelling by bus or cruising in the sea, read! You can read anywhere: in the kitchen, in the garden, at the park, at the beach, or even in the bathroom!

Here’s my latest catch, some of which were bought by Mr Dad (thank you so much!), but most borrowed from my local library. So far, I have managed to read 8 of them, which leaves me with another 9 to go! Stay tuned for my next posts, I’ll be sharing more about the books I’ve read with all of you fellow bookworms!

“When people ask me if I like reading, it’s like asking me if I like breathing.”

mukhtar books.jpg

Here’s a complete list of the books as seen in the picture, from top to bottom:

  1. Through The Mirror Door – Sarah Baker
  2. Grandpa’s Great Escape – David Walliams
  3. The Wonderling – Mira Bartok
  4. The Bolds In Trouble – Julian Clary
  5. Book 3 of All The Wrong Questions: “Shouldn’t You Be In School?” – Lemony Snicket
  6. Wildwood – Colin Meloy
  7. Under Wildwood – Colin Meloy
  8. The Midnight Gang – David Walliams
  9. My Arch-Enemy is a Brain in a Jar – David Solomons
  10. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain
  11. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
  12. A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
  13. The Song From Somewhere Else – A.F. Harrold
  14. The Tiffin – Mahtab Narsimhan
  15. Wilderness – Roddy Doyle
  16. Where The World Ends – Geraldine McCaughrean
  17. Where My Wellies Take Me – Michael Morpurgo *missing from the picture*

Thank You Malaysian Digest!

This post is specially dedicated to Ms Hana Maher and the team at Malaysian Digest! Thank you so much Ms Hana for writing an EXCLUSIVE FEATURE about my humble self! Words can’t describe how much I appreciate it! Also, thank you so much for speaking so highly of me! I am very grateful! I’m so humbled by your kind words! As always, the write-up was very well-written and high-quality, and, just like your previous articles (some of which have been displayed in my school), it was written with great care and not a single detail was missed! I loved reading it, not because it was about me, but because Ms Hana’s style of writing is truly captivating! In fact, why don’t you give it a read? I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!

Click the link below ⤵️ to read the full article:

http://www.malaysiandigest.com/frontpage/29-4-tile/747393-exclusive-meet-the-british-born-m-sian-who-was-offered-a-full-scholarship-at-top-uk-school.html

It’s not just Ms Hana who deserves thanks – the whole team does! I’d also like to say a special thank you to Ms Deza, the Editor of Malaysian Digest, for honouring me with this EXCLUSIVE FEATURE! Ms Hana, Ms Deza and the Malaysian Digest team are brilliant people who have been supporting not only me, but my whole family, and continue to do so! I am truly blessed to be surrounded by so many supportive people, including all of you, my beloved readers! On behalf of my family, I would like to again thank Ms Hana, Ms Deza and the team at Malaysian Digest for all your kindness! May God reward you handsomely! Not forgotten, to all my dearest readers, your PAWSOME support is highly appreciated! Please continue to keep me and my family in your prayers!

p/s: Stay tuned for another EXCLUSIVE FEATURE on Malaysian Digest where Mrs Mom and Mr Dad will share their parenting secrets very soon! 😉

Officially A King Edward’s Boy!

harrypotterTPL.jpg

It’s official! I am finally a King Edward’s boy! 😆 I’m going to go to King Edward’s School (KES), my dream school! I am more than over the moon right now, and all the hard work and sacrifices that led up to this moment have paid off!

When I was in Year 5, my class teacher, Mr Webster, said I had the potential to apply for a grammar school. At the time, I was clueless as to what a grammar school was. I had never heard of it. All I knew was that after Year 6, I’d be going to a normal secondary school. Mr Webster then gave me a leaflet for an open day at King Edward’s School. I went home and did some research, and I found out that KES was one of the best schools in the UK and one of its famous alumni was the author of ‘The Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’, J.R.R. Tolkien himself! That’s when I decided that I had to attend their open day!

It was 18th March 2017 when I first set foot into my dream school for their open day. It was like I was Harry Potter stepping into Hogwarts! The building looked old and grand, and almost castle-like – just the way I like it! I felt that connection between us as soon as I stepped through the front doors. KES was the only grammar school I visited, and I didn’t want to go anywhere else. Whenever people asked me what my school choices were, I always said KES and only KES! Everybody was surprised because the other students had at least 3 choices of schools that they wanted to go to…but not me! I couldn’t see myself going anywhere else other than KES!

The entry requirements to join a grammar school were not easy! First, I had to take and pass a test called the 11+ to be considered for a place at any of the grammar schools, and a separate entrance test for KES. And I couldn’t just pass the test! The results had to be outstanding because there were thousands of students like me sitting for it too! However, Mrs Mom was gravely ill at the time and Mr Dad had his hands full with taking care of Mrs Mom and Fatimah and Ali, so, unlike the many other people who started preparing many years back, I had to start a few days into the summer holidays when the 11+ was less than one month away in September (2017)! 😰

Preparing for the 11+ was hard enough as the things I had to learn were not covered in school, but the search for someone to become my tutor was FRANTIC. Almost everybody turned me down because it was seemingly impossible when everyone had started two or three years back when I had to cover everything in less than a month, but one person had gone beyond the act of kindness and took me as a student of her own – Auntie Shaheen. We didn’t even know her. She was a complete stranger to us but she was like a God-sent angel! She was willing to give me some guidance and support so that I could do the test! I couldn’t have done it without her and I will never be able to thank her enough! Not only that, she also guided Mrs Mom and Mr Dad and told them what they could do to teach me from home!

The whole family was super supportive too! Dadajee and Dadijee flew all the way from Malaysia to help us! Mrs Mom and Mr Dad taught me all they knew, Dadajee always sat by my side every day to help me and time my practice tests, and also made sure that I had enough rest, Dadijee took over the kitchen and made sure all the food was ready and everybody else encouraged me to keep on working hard! Dr Auntie and Mamajee also played their part in assisting me in my studies! I studied from morning to evening and we didn’t go on holiday anywhere during that summer! But I think that the hardest thing I had to sacrifice was reading! I have Obsessive Reading Disorder😁, and giving up my books was like TORTURE!!! There were days when I found myself reading the back of cereal boxes at breakfast time – that was how desperate I was to find something, ANYTHING to read! 😂

After plenty of preparation, the day of the 11+ finally arrived, and I wouldn’t say I whizzed through it with ease, but I was feeling pretty confident! Soon, it was over, and there was nothing I could do other than pray and wait for the KES test. That came in a matter of a couple of weeks, too, and the anxiety was getting to me. 😞

Then, one fateful day, I was at school when I was unexpectedly called out of class by Mrs Chesney-Ly, my school’s English Leader. She told me that Mrs Mom had called. I wasn’t that sure about why. Maybe something serious had happened at home. But then, I put the phone to my ear and when the conversation ended, I was speechless. I had passed the 11+ – with flying colours! I nearly burst into tears of joy! This was basically a dream come true! Now I could go to any grammar school I wanted to! I can still remember that moment when I broke the news to Miss Patrick, my class teacher, she jumped up, waving her hands in the air, and shouted my results out to the whole class!

I thought that this was the last of God’s blessings because this was much, much more than I asked for! I quote what Auntie Shaheen said: “Now you don’t have to worry about anything! No school will reject you!” I had hoped to just pass the 11+, but I had excelled! But later on, we got a phone call from none other than King Edward’s School…my dream school! Apparently, I had done extremely good in their entrance test, and had been offered a school place with a chance to get a scholarship out of the 125 students! In order to actually get the scholarship, I would have to attend a separate interview at the school. The funny thing is that the results for the 11+ were released on Mrs Mom’s birthday (10th October 2017), the call was on Mamajee’s birthday (10th November 2017), and the interview was scheduled on Dr Auntie’s birthday (14th November 2017)! I had a good feeling about this, and when the interview was over and done with, I was glad that I had done my best. But deep inside, only God knew how anxious I was about not being able to get the scholarship because the yearly school fees for KES were extremely high! 😳

Then, the awaited day came when we were all waiting for a letter from King Edward’s School. It was the day before the deadline date for the outcome of the scholarship interviews. The night before, me, Mrs Mom and Mr Dad were discussing that it was fine if I didn’t get the place, even if it did break my heart 💔. KES seemed far out of my reach, and we were grateful that we wouldn’t have a problem to secure a place at any normal grammar school. I was restless, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Then when I came home from school that day (Thursday 7th December 2017), I found a letter on the fireplace addressed to me and it had a KES stamp on it. Both Mrs Mom and Mr Dad were there too. They were both waiting for me to open it. I opened it nervously…and I couldn’t believe my eyes! Suddenly all the tension melted away, as if a weight had been lifted off my back. I had been awarded the full scholarship! It was one of the happiest days of my life – I burst into tears of joy! I was going to be able to go to my dream school, where one of my idol authors studied, where I would be able to do great things! I am truly blessed!

So only a few days ago, on Thursday 28th of June, me and the family were invited to the Admissions Ceremony, where I was formally welcomed into the school! Walking up onto the stage to shake the Chief Master’s hand – Dr Mark Fenton – feelings of nervousness overwhelmed by excitement passed through me. I couldn’t believe that this was actually happening, that I actually had the chance to go to my dream school and make my family proud! 😊

Dear Future Pawsome Lion,

You may be reading this in 10 years or so from today, Sunday 1st July 2018, and if you are, then never forget all the people who sacrificed things for you! Remember what your family has done for you, what Mrs Mom and Mr Dad have been through, what Fatimah and Ali have had to sacrifice for you, all the prayers family, friends and teachers have sent for you, and all the hard work everybody has done for you, because without everything, you wouldn’t be who you are today! And most importantly, please remember to stay humble, be thankful to God as He has given you more than you wished for, and be a great person in this world so that hopefully one day…YOU CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!

From The 11-year-old Pawsome Lion

Sunday 1st July 2018

Dear God,

Thank you for all the blessings You have bestowed on me and my family. I can’t thank You enough! Please restore all world peace so children across the world can have happy moments like this too and can grow into wonderful people who can make a good difference in this world and SHINE…

p/s: Feeling:

  • Blessed 😇
  • Grateful 🙏
  • Excited 😜

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National Writing Day 2018

ndw 2018

I feel most free when…I am writing. Like now. It feels fantastic! Writing is a time when you can let loose and get caught up in what you love most. It’s almost like magic! You put pen to paper and then suddenly…you’re sitting in another world altogether! There’s enchantment in the air, impossible becomes possible, you can do anything you want! But the best part is that the subjects aren’t limited: you can write about anything! Football, flowers, the great outdoors, magic – anything you can think of can be turned into a brilliant piece of writing! You could even write about writing, like I am right now! The possibilities are endless! So that’s what I think. I feel most free when I am writing! What about you?

p/s: Happy National Writing Day 2018!

#nationalwritingday #writeaway

My Last Parents’ Meeting…

ms patrick

Yesterday, we went to my last parents’ meeting at my primary school. Wow! I can’t believe how fast time has gone! In a few weeks’ time, I will be finishing school, and in September, I will start my new journey in secondary school! Since my Reception days, my parents never missed any parents’ meetings! No matter how busy they are, they always make sure they both attend. Bless them, they’re very supportive to me, Fatimah and Ali!

This is Miss Patrick, my current class teacher. The same like my previous teachers, Miss Patrick is great! Me and my classmates are so lucky to have such a dedicated teacher! She’s the type of teacher who brings the best out of her students! She’s fun, knowledgeable and always there to help! I will definitely miss not just her, but all my primary school teachers when I go to secondary school as they have done so much for me! Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today! Thank you!

Dear God,
Please guide me on the right path and let me remember the kindness of my teachers and all the things I have learnt from them. Allow me to stay humble and know that they were the ones who helped me get to this point in life! Allow me to stay not just humble, but also lead me on the right path so that I can set a good example to my little brother and sister…and also inspire others so that TOGETHER WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William A. Ward

Happy Birthday Dadijee!

dadijee birthday

It was Dadijee’s birthday on Friday 8th June 2018, and it was a very special day indeed! Dadijee is an amazing grandma to all three of us – me, Fatimah and Ali – and a brilliant mother to Mrs Mom! She’s an ideal role model: she’s kind, considerate, and loving! She’s always there to help us and support us in bad times. She is willing to spare her time to listen to us, and she will always have some handy words of wisdom to share! And of course, her cooking is PAWSOME! But most of all, she’s loving! She’ll always be there to comfort us, as a grandma, mother and friend!

So today, I wish Dadijee a very Happy Birthday! Happy Birthday Dadijee! May God bestow all the greatest of blessings upon you! And what could be better than celebrating her birthday than when we’re all here together? Yes, that’s right, Dadijee and all the family just arrived on Thursday, right on time for her birthday! It’s so nice to have the family together for this special occasion! And as my gift as a grandson to a grandma, a special poem specially for one of the amazing people in my life!

A Brilliant Grandma

A Poem By Omar Mukhtar, The Pawsome Lion

She is a brilliant grandma,

With special qualities,

She’s kind, unique and sweet,

And puts up with my frivolities!

She is a brilliant grandma,

A brilliant cook too,

And so much food upon the plates,

It’s more than I can chew!

She is a brilliant grandma,

And on her birthday,

A thank you

Is the least I could do

For all she’s done for me

But I think I’ll start with that

Thank You and Happy Birthday!

p/s: Dear God,

Please shower my grandma with the greatest of blessings and reserve her the best place in Heaven – she really deserves it!

Love,

Omar Mukhtar a.k.a. The Pawsome Lion

A Message From A Brother…

When I was born, people from Malaysia laughed at my parents for naming me ‘Omar Mukhtar’. According to them, it was a backdated name. They said, “You live in England, why would you give him a name like that?”. The funny thing is that living in England, none of the local people who lived here ever made fun of my name, even at school, students and teachers alike. My parents call me by my full name ‘Omar Mukhtar’, or ‘Mukhtar’ for short. I did choose to be called ‘Mukhtar’ at school too, because ‘Omar’ is also my father’s name and it could get confusing. Even though my friends and teachers found it hard in the beginning to pronounce the name ‘Mukhtar’, they didn’t choose to call me ‘Omar’ just because it was easier for them. They all respected my decision and tried their best to pronounce it. They never call me anything I didn’t want to be called.

I love how my parents named all three of us – Omar Mukhtar, Fatimah and Ali. They didn’t simply just say, “Ooh, ‘Omar Mukhtar’ sounds like a nice name, I’m going to call my son that” no, they named us after the owners of the names, hoping that one day, we might become as great a person as they are – Omar Mukhtar, after the famous Lion Of The Desert; Fatimah, after the beloved Prophet’s daughter; and Ali, after the 4th Khalifa in Islam. Our parents always reminded us how important our names are and that we must live up to them. They also told us to be proud of our names and never be ashamed of them, even though some people say they are old-school.

Whenever we go out and people ask all three of our names, they praise our parents for giving us such great names. There is even a teacher from my school who, whenever I pass him, tells me how much he loves my name. He tells me this on a daily basis without fail!

Now, the same thing that happened to me is happening to Fatimah too. People called her ‘Timoh’ and made fun of her name. It made her really upset! She gets annoyed whenever people call her anything other than her full name because at home and at school, everyone always calls her Fatimah. Sadly, the only people who make fun of our names are Malaysian. Some people simply label those who call Fatimah as ‘Timoh’ only from Kelantan or Terengganu. They’re not! They’re actually from all over Malaysia, which has spread to Singapore and Brunei too!

My parents have been telling people for years to call Fatimah properly but they never stopped calling her ‘Timoh’ until my aunt decided that she too has had enough with all this name calling, so she wrote a post about why we called her Fatimah. After this was posted, we received floods of messages from people who went through the same experience as us. It was truly shocking reading their stories and thinking about what effect it must have had on their lives! But sadly, after that, still, there were many who kept on calling her ‘Timoh’ because they say it’s ‘cute and funny’. How rude!

Name-calling is an act of insult and is a form of bullying. I’m surprised how with all this anti-bullying awareness around the world, people still don’t realise that name-calling is an act of bullying! Don’t take name-calling lightly because it’s a very serious matter! It can affect the person really badly on the inside, even though you can’t see it. They may lose their confidence, for example, and that may affect their life in the long run.

They may blame themselves for their problems, which can also lead to loss of confidence. I could go on and on with this list of effects.

As the Head Boy of my school, if anything like this happened, I would strongly go against it as bullying cannot be tolerated in any situation whatsoever! I would also plead to parents and teachers out there to take this matter seriously and do as much as they can to play their role and prevent things like this from repeatedly happening!

Imagine that every day for a week, you went up to a mirror and called yourself something you don’t like being called. It wouldn’t make you feel too good about yourself, would it? That’s exactly how Fatimah feels when she’s called ‘Timoh’, and how I felt when people made fun of my name. Sure, some people don’t do it intentionally, but we’ve been telling them how to call Fatimah correctly, and still, when she’s now already 4 years old, they continue to mock her name!

Honestly, I’m curious why some Malaysians, who are from the same religion as us, mock our names, whereas people from different religions praise them.

So all in all, name-calling? It’s an act of bullying. It’s something that needs to be stopped and together, we can make that happen. Let us build a world where we can feel safe and happy, a world where bullying is a thing of the past! I am an 11-year-old boy in Year 6 whose sister has experienced bad name-calling, so I’m speaking for her and for those who have suffered and are still suffering from the same issue. If we all act as one then maybe, just maybe TOGETHER WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!

p/s: STOP calling my sister TIMOH. Her name is FATIMAH! She has me on her right and Ali on her left. As for me, I’m not bothered if you don’t like my name because I am OMAR MUKHTAR THE PAWSOME LION!

Mostly Bitter, Not So Sweet…

One night, while I lay in bed, I found myself tossing and turning, not being able to sleep. As I lay there counting sheep, a poem kept ringing in my head, ‘Brother and Sister’ by Lewis Carroll, who also wrote the famous ‘Alice In Wonderland’. I had actually read it earlier on, and it became my new favourite poem! Becoming inspired to write my own twisted version, I quickly pulled out my mini notebook from under my pillow (yep, I keep a notebook under my pillow) and penned down my ideas! Here’s the finished product, which is about a brother and a sister with a bittersweet relationship, which, as the title implies, is mostly bitter, but not so sweet…

Mostly Bitter, Not So Sweet…

A Poem By O. Mukhtar O. Mukhlis a.k.a The Pawsome Lion

There was once a boy, a boy and a girl,

And that little girl made her brother hurl

“Oh sister!” he said,

“I must rest my head!

So I’m calling Doc Crest

To get rid of you pest!”

“Such rudeness, boy!

I am not your toy!”

Her brother replied

“I shall smack your hide,

Or would you, perhaps, like a scratch,

So on your face, you’ll wear a patch?”

Doc Crest came bursting through the door,

“Where is the little pest, so poor?”

And thus replied the young girl’s brother,

“There is the stinky little bother!”

“What special treatment do you require?”

“Please tie her to a castle spire!

Or better still, just put her in

A soup we can put in the bin.”

“A soup it is!

First cut then whizz!”

The poor girl fainted,

It looked like red, her face had been painted

When she woke up,

She was tied up

Next to a pot

So boiling hot

She felt like she had just been shot

Right when her brother picked her up,

The cops came in and shouted “Stop!

Don’t put her in!

That’ll be a sin!”

He said “I don’t care,

She’s a rotten old pear”

And just when he was feeling bold,

The policemen knocked him out cold

He was dragged to jail

So young and frail

And was never heard from ever again

“So now you see,” said a coffee barista,

“No good comes out of cooking your sister!”

(Who, in actual fact, was drinking his brother, in the form of an innocent coffee cup)

So, what do you think of it?

The message that I wanted this poem to send was to BE NICE! Whether you’re brother and sister, best friends, colleagues or any other relationship, being kind is key. Typical me, I like to be different, so instead of writing about what to do, I wrote about what not to do! Remember how the brother tries putting his sister in a soup? That represents a bad action, and just by doing it, he releases the darker side of relationships. Of course, there are consequences for these things. Like how the brother was ‘dragged off to jail’ in this piece, the consequences are serious, and trust me, you don’t want to face them. And of course, the very end teaches us not to judge a book by its cover…or the contents of a coffee cup by its label (honestly, you never know what a two-faced person your coffee barista could be). The coffee barista in this poem represents the many two-faced people in this world that give out words of wisdom but do the exact opposite of their own advice! Nobody should be like this. Instead, we should all be our true selves and try to be the best we can and help others be their best every day!

p/s: Oh yes, and not to forget, cannibalism is BAD!!! 😬