My dear boys....
As far back as I can recall - zaman dolu-dolu, Ibu would never miss to get my baju raya. Those baju raya were 'new' to Ibu, but not necessarily brand new. Somehow, it didn't matter at all to Ibu whether they were brand new or not for Ibu knew Ibu Noi would carefully select among the best of her frocks/dresses/baju kurung that she had outgrown and reserve them for Ibu, specially for Hari Raya. Similary, Ibu Noi would get her share of the best reserved for her for Hari Raya by Mak Ngah. And it didn't matter to Ibu Noi either. I cannot recall where Mak Ngah got her baju raya from. It didn't seem to matter to Mak Ngah at all too.
There was one year when all of us girls got a pair of brand new baju kurung each for Hari Raya. What a treat! We found out years later that Nenek had bought a par of cloth, supposedly meant to be as a present for her sister-in-law to-be. She had offered to sew the curtains for the bridal room. Unfortunately, her sister-in-law to-be totally rejected the present and simply returned the whole par to Nenek - she said she didn't like the colour. So waste not want not - all 3 of us girls got a pair of brand new baju kurung for Hari Raya that year - same colour, same design, same material - all handmade by Nenek.
It didn't matter to us at all.
We saw them working hard day & night to raise us 6 siblings. What mattered to us girls then, was not to make Nenek & Atok worry too much over expenses of baju raya for their daughters. For we know there were other expenses that deserved higher priorities.
That - as far back as I can recall ......... zaman dolu-dolu.
And since 'zaman dolu-dolu', we've definitely come a long way, my boys. All because Nenek & Atok set the right priorities on what matters most for their growing up children then.
Matters that could not be sacrificed for immediate gratification.
Matters that could not be achieved without sacrifice.
I know Ibu Noi or Mak Ngah would buy at least a pair of 'baju' for Nenek & Atok every Hari Raya. And they would also ask Nenek not to worry about preparing Raya dishes as they would do that part and send one periuk or one kuali over to Nenek's house by eve of Raya.
Ibu? Even if we live next door to Nenek & Atok, you know Ibu can't offer to cook anything safe, healthy and edible for them. So Ibu would transfer some money to Nenek & Atok instead, for their discretionary disposal for some other expenses that may become a priority for Raya preparation.
This despite their assurance from the other end of the phone line that "There is nothing to worry about, my children. Just don't forget to balik kampung for Hari Raya, you hear? That's what matters most to us".
I know sooner or later, I may be echoing that very same line to you, my boys.