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, www.veralim.com.

Jun 14, 2014

Back to Nature: 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.

May 20, 2014

Paddington Market, Sydney

Something colourful to share, taken from our visit to Paddington Markets. Even though, it was one year ago, I remember it was a relaxing afternoon to admire variety, creativity, originality, practicality, quaintness and deliciousness. I love wandering in Aussie outdoor markets.

This one in particular, has a playground area for me to dump the girls and wander all by my self (The hub and the relatives willing to look after them at the playground area).

Apr 29, 2014

Bangkok 2014: Yaowarat

Right after our visit to The Grand Palace, we headed to Yaowarat, a. k. a. Chinatown. We considered various transportation options. Unexpectedly, bus was the one we took. Just because the taxi driver we checked with refused to go by meter and we were afraid that Tuk tuk could not take the capacity of five of us. Furthermore, the price of taking a Tuk Tuk was not much cheaper than a non-metering taxi. Then, we thought of walking over as the map shown a pretty convincing distance via foot. In the end, one of us sought help from a group of school girls passed by for a rough direction. Apparently they understood some simple English, advised us to take bus. When they pointed towards a bus stop, mentioned a bus number, all of our eyes followed her hand direction, the exact bus was stopping there to pick up passengers. Immediately we ran and hopped on... 

Apr 4, 2014

Mar 2014: Shining Four

As she was marching toward Fourth birthday, I showed her what is four, playfully with her fingers, one, two, three, four. She grinned marvelously. Four seems to be a big number compare to Three, she was very looking forward to. I reckoned she has learnt a lot more about her growth and development from past year. As I looked at her happy face to the new discovery, I thought and added on, "When you are four, you have four things to do...". Indicatively, each finger tied with a challenge for her to take up. It would be some form of change to her life moving forward. Knowing her, she doesn't really like changes, but I believe she could do it and would get the great sense of accomplishment to meet her milestone significantly. I promised her that I would help. 

It was also a task for myself to learn her growth, that she is baby no more. 

Credits: Akizo, Sahlin studio, etc.

Mar 25, 2014

Bangkok 2014: The Grand Palace

As my friends had not been to (or fade memory of) the dazzling, magnificent Grand Palace, I put a half-day palace tour in my proposed itinerary. I wanted to learn about the exotic palace! Gasp, it must be a mum thing for unable to run away from planning an "educational tour".

But I'm lucky again, no one objected.
It is really a beautiful palace!

Mar 14, 2014

Bangkok 2014: Street Food

When we were in Bangkok, we stayed in Glow Pratunam Hotel, a very new hotel as I understand from Trip Advisor. Google map which has not caption the latest completed structure/building, would not be able to tell you the actual location unless you type in 919 Petchburi Road, or Shibuya 19. Yes, Glow Pratunam and Shibuya are co-located, vertically.

Ok, I am not talking about the hotel here. Yes, it is a very nice hotel, bed is comfortably clean and soft, staff are friendly, etc etc. But I am actually wanting to lead you to food. Right behind the hotel, there's this yummy alley called Soi Petchburi 19. This is the highlight here- the street food!

As my hotel booking did not include breakfast, Soi Petchburi 19 was the place we went to for first meal of the day. Every morning of our stay.

Mar 10, 2014

Feb 2014: Risky Affair

I forgotten how my secondary school classmates' chat group sparked a brilliant idea to travel together. It maybe because we ran out of topic to chat(?). There are nine of us, and by now I know the routine of each one of them and pretty much to sum up that our living as mother is boring and those singles are... boring too. Of course, we share more than just routine. Like old days, we argue sometime and piss off one or another, but we get to usual selves fast too. Certain days, we talk non-sense, we laugh crazily in front of our own phone; we give virtual hugs, we understand one's long silent without much asking. 

Sorry I digress. As majority of us supported the idea of  a weekend trip together, the destination has few criteria to meet: fun, safe and easy for us ladies to explore. I suggested Bangkok: cheap, exotic and not too far of distance, from both KL and Singapore. Truth to be told, I had not been to Bangkok! They all did, many years back. Lucky me, the travelling time and budget match most everyone, the food and shopping in Bangkok are already well known and attractive, they agreed unanimously to the Land of Smiles, again! Yay!!!

It's exciting, undoubtedly. No man, no kids, just us, ladies having lots of fun over a weekend. Just like old days. Since my friends were so accommodating, I volunteered to hunt for hotel and crafted the brief itinerary. I love doing it, I love learning about the city prior to the trip. It was overwhelming, too much resources, too big a city. 

Along the way, the news about the riot came in. We got worried. I doubled the reading about the city, about the situation. The news about the explosion near Central World shopping mall and at Lumphini Park protest rally site were just happened few days before our departure. 

To go or not to go?! We asked each other.

Feb 28, 2014

Pig Maw Soup

Growing up, pig maw soup is one of my comfort food. Strangely, I can't remember how did I acquire the taste of pepper or texture of pig maw from young. Why do I enjoy it so much?

Perhaps it is the consequence of consuming a bowl of the soup: the peppery of the soup dispenses into my tummy and stays warm for a long while. Perhaps, it serves as a reminder of my mum to take good care of my weak stomach these days. To her, this peppery soup helps to strengthen weak digestive system.

And over these years, I managed to convince my daughters to eat pig maw too. If I have the time and strength to do the cleaning of the pig maw (usually you would need 20-30 minutes standing by the sink for getting a satisfy result of a pig maw) during weekend, it would appear on our dinning table in one of the weekday after. Conveniently, it has become a one-pot meal for my family. I could easily gather all the needed ingredients and prepare the soup in the morning and boil in the pot of the vacuum thermal cooker for at least 30 minutes long before I head out to work.

So this is my version of pig maw soup-
"让生命稳稳流动(也)是我的功课之一。" by Bubu Tsai