Nov 10, 2014

A Bit (More) from the Daily Fix

While writing and receiving loves on my earlier post of the Daily Fix, I got the opportunity to chat a little with Julian, the Founder. More on, feedback on his food and coffee we had. I approached him further if he would like to share about his story on the café business, those vintage collections, his effort, his vision and what not. I mean, how clever is he to hunt and keep those antiques and oldies? Making them as part of his life beautifully is another great success. He must have some secret!

Here’s his reply:

Oct 15, 2014

Malacca: The Daily Fix, Jonker Street

We travel back to Kuala Lumpur from Singapore to visit my family, at least thrice a year. Hence, SC and I would bring the girls pop by Malacca whenever we could, just to be a day or two of wondering wanderers. Malacca maybe now a very tourist hotspot, it is still a new adventure place to the girls, many to see, many to think about and learn. We also think that it is a living book for us to read and get to walk our history physically. 

[Ok, the true is adult us love the food there, cheap and authentic].

Usually, we would pick off-peak season to visit the centre of Malacca city. It is always jam-packed during weekends and public holidays, on the road especially. Traffic congestion gets worst after listed as UNESCO heritage site. Good and bad I guess. I don't like crowd, and frankly we can't afford to spend more on the accommodation. Y'know, they charge more during peak seasons. (And they charge almost half the price when it is off-peak.)

So, after we had enough of wandering (and books), we went to The Daily Fix.

Oct 14, 2014

Malacca: Jonker Street and its Very Own Library

As I was saying, I have fond memories of Malacca. My dad brought little us to visit Malacca to makan angin (to travel for leisure), mostly during school holiday. Vaguely, I saw the red shophouses a lot, and the Christ Church, and the Fort A Famosa. And Trishaw! We didn't have it in the big city of KL nor small hometown of my dad's, you see. Malacca provided us a glimpse of the past and slower pace of living (few days though) from the Kuala Lumpur city. Over the years, I learnt a lot more about its history of Sultanate, Laksamana and Temenggung, as well as the unique Baba and Nyonya culture from our textbooks. It was one of the proud eras prior to Colonialism of Malaya. 

Profoundly, Malacca set the modern nation of Malaysia. If I may conclude so. 

Like many other cities in Malaysia, Malacca grows and develops rapidly too, vertically and horizontally while I was reading it from the textbooks. Some parts of the city stay physically intact as much as it could, some parts try to integrate the past and redevelop. Conservation and Preservation are not easy when socia-economic consideration is the primary aspect for a city. In 2008, together with George Town of Penang, Malacca became one of UNESCO World Heritage Site. More effort of redevelopment ever since, but I think that listing gives some of us some sort of relief that many of the past get to stay permanently.

Speaking of which, we love visiting Jonker Streetbeing the core of the Malacca UNESCO World Heritage SiteDuring our last visit to Malacca, we had great fun. 

Oct 7, 2014

Sept 2014: Malacca

In many ways, Malacca is a very charming place to be. Its food and its mixed arts and cultural are the main attractions, along with those well restored historical architectures. Jonker Street, aka Jalan Hang Jebat, being the core of the Malacca UNESCO World Heritage Site, is where we don’t mind coming back again whenever we are visiting Malacca. Jonker Street is where I would find surprises whenever we are the wondering wanderers.

Slowly, I realised that, Malacca is also one of the places that I injected best memories to my children, my family. Pretty much similar to what my dad did to us. We used to visit Malacca for family trips. Those days, Malacca was much more leisure, much more simple; not as happening as now, was not so scorchy hot, was much lesser cars, little chaotic developments, no reclamation (or was it started in process?)... 

Malacca was a good place for us to escape from the metropolitan KL.

Credits: Amanda Yi Designs; Sahlin Studio; Kim Christensen's Design; Akizo, etc.

The text in the digital scrapbook is in Malay, for Melaka = Malacca; Bandaraya Bersejarah = Historical City. I am slowly losing the power of writing in it and speaking of it. 

I share more of our surprises in Jonker Street here and there.

Sep 22, 2014

Review: Creative Horizons

My girl's English isn't fantastic. She is confused with grammar, weak with word decoding; speaks Singlish (Colloquial Singaporean English) wonderfully and brings them into her comprehension, composition and oral too.

I don't have solution for her, except being very patient in correcting her. You see, I was brought up in an environment that English is being third or four language to acquaint with, I didn't learn the language formally until i was in third year of primary school. I learnt English bit by bit slowly over the years and I am still learning the language to-date. So in a way, I don't push very hard in her study. I let the big English-speaking environment do the hard work; the school, her friends, the media are the greatest teachers, aren't they? Eventually, she should be mastering the language, right? I am just a supporting role when she's back home.

But. My home environment is kind of rojak (mixed): Mandarin, English and most of the time mixing them up in a sentence to convey a message. Even though I don't speak perfect English, I was taught the right way to speak simple English and so cautiously, I speak to my children in grammatically correct manner... by right. In such a big environment of Singlish, I am slowly localised, been quite confused with the language sometime, while exhaustively reminding her what's right and what's not. Slowly, I get into more serious business, past years' paper for her to practice, holiday programme to revise, hoping to improve her proficiency level. I hate to admit, I am doing little help to her, in her English. To some extend, I speak more Chinese to her instead. Let's go back to our mother tongue, she should be mastering the language eventually, right?

I think I was giving up in helping her.

Aug 20, 2014

Fun for Free Singapore: Venus Loop, MacRitchie

This post is part of the FUN FOR FREE SG series of blog train, brought to you by a group of mum bloggers. We’re sharing on one fun and free venue a day in the month of August. For the complete list of places, please scroll right to the bottom of this blog post.
. . . . . . . . . . ~ ~ . . . . . . . . . .

Today, I'll be sharing with you another fun and free place to be with your little ones: Venus Loop, a small part of MacRitchie nature trails.

MacRitchie situated in the core area of the Central Catchment Nature Reserve (CCNR), it is believed that it boasts a rich biodiversity with over 500 animal species. Together with MacRitchie, the CCNR now consists of a mixture of young and mature secondary forests with virgin primary forest surrounding the reservoirs.

As you may already know, MacRitchie Trails is a 20-km network of forest trails and broadwalks winding through the forest, to allow public to experience and appreciate nature. TreeTop Walk is another key attraction of CCNR. Whilst, Venus Loop is less mentioned.
"The MacRitchie Forest Trail at Venus Drive meanders along the banks of a forest stream that is full of freshwater life. Here live dragons and damsels, freshwater crabs and prawns, the Puff-faced Watersnake, Pygmy Halfbeak and Saddle Barb." from Toddycats.

Aug 13, 2014

Aug 2014: Bomber's First Excursion

Little Bomber's first field trip to Singapore Zoo, without daddy or mummy. She probably missed us, but the teacher said, kids had a wonderful time. She mentioned many new animal names after the trip; built a giraffe with lego (at home) the next day. She is a step closer away from clingy. I think, I should celebrate the milestone, here, in digi-scrapbook way.

And then, I recalled of Jijie's first excursion, I did a layout for her too. It was 6 years ago!!! I walked through a wonderful memory lane while clicking through those scrapbooks I did over the years. One child, then two. It is a lot harder to parent these days. I reckon, this is a way of me trying to replay the moments with my children, and be reminded of how blessed I am to have them. Quote and unquote Louise Erdrich, time with children is like water runs through fingers, we tried to hold, to capture, to fix moments in a lens... 

My firstborn is grown up, my littlest baby no more; I am memorialise now.

Jul 28, 2014

Duxton Hill, Duxton Road

We came here unintentionally. We wanted to visit Oriole, to sip one of the best specialty coffee in town, but it was closed to our surprise (apparently there was a moving out party in mid July). We roamed around the area and found Duxton Road, as well as Duxton Hill - one of the elegant conservation neighbourhood in the city.

Jun 26, 2014

May 2014: Holi Colour Fight!

Here, a layout for this crazy fun moment we had at the very first day of the school holiday. Evelyn invited us over for a colour fest- Holi, an ancient Hindu religious festival, celebrating the triumph of 'good' over 'bad'.

Our first to Holi, Bomber was totally astonished to the mess on everyone and clung to me when we arrived. For a while, I thought we would not be able to enjoy the fun. I tried to soothe her, tried to rub some goop on her gently, coloured myself too! Somehow, the baby powder did the magic, she was unleashed very quickly after holding the bottle of baby powder, exclusively. In total, it took less than half an hour for the girls to warm up themselves and joined in the attack and run. 
Credits: Sahlin Studio, FeiFei's Stuff, Pixels and Company,

Jun 14, 2014

Sekeping Serendah, Malaysia

I remember vaguely about my maternal grandma's old house in Kuala Pilah, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia. It was a dwelling built with woods and metals and some concrete sat in a forest. Well, there was a huge estate of rubber trees behind the house, managed by my grandparents, according to my mum. And many fruit trees, a small vegetation and a little farm with some chickens and ducks for 12 children, together with my grandparents. I think my mum mentioned pigs was there once, when she was young. There was a swing too. I loved that swing! The house was a distant away from a main road. There was no near neighbours to be seen or to be heard. Every household was sprawling away from each other. When it was dusk, it would be totally dark and quiet out there, it was better stay in that house and don't step out, little me concluded.  

Those were the days of Malaysian's kampung (rural) living, very scatter from one house to another, admist in the wild and man-made vegetation. I was only baby, then a toddler, tasted and learnt about rural living.

This mid year school holiday, we brought my mum and the girls back to experience an idyllic living. We rented a Glass Shed in Sekeping Serendah.
"让生命稳稳流动(也)是我的功课之一。" by Bubu Tsai