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Wednesday, 31 October 2007

Happy Birthday, Mother & Happy Halloween

Today is my mother's birthday. We celebrated her birthday again, with another cake, lol. A mango cake this time and from Hilton Hotel again, lol.

Here is wishing you a very Happy Birthday.
May all your wishes and dreams come true.
Love from all of us in Singapore and England

Today is also the Eve of All Saints' Day or Eve of All Hallows or Halloween. We often joked that since my mother was born on Halloween's night, she must be a witch, lol. :P Well, she often has very uncanny insight into matters and people. Can be really scary, lol.
For more information about Halloween, click here.
Happy Halloween. Trick or treat. =)

Field Trip to The Science Centre

Today, the girls' pre-school arranged a field trip to The Science Centre for the children. Parents are often invited along to such field trips, 1) can keep an eye on their own children, 2) to be involved in the children's schooling. This is the fourth field trip I have been with the girls as the days happened to coincide with my non-working days. (I just love working part-time! Lol.)

It was raining in the morning but the girls were still as excited as ever about going on the filed trip. When we arrived at the centre, it was PACKED with students!! It seemed every school has decided to choose to go to The Science Centre as their after exam excursion! Seeing the HUGE crowd, my excitement was already dampened by half but not the girls. The centre was also very confusing like a maze, it seemed as if we were walking in circles. The lighting wasn't very bright too, trying to be green perhaps?? But quite dangerous, especially for the little children who couldn't see clearly where they were going. What irked me the most was the rowdy students who were running and dashing about the centre most recklessly with no care about others. "There are little children around, you idiots!", I swore under my breath. Throughout the time at the centre, I was always in front of my girls like a mother hen protecting her chicks from being knocked down by the students who were dashing around. Argh!

When a good friend heard my girls were going to the Science Centre, he mentioned that when he visited Science Centre during his school days, he did nothing but push the buttons, what more little pre-school children. He was so right! Lol. My girls did nothing but just push at every button they saw, and pull or push every lever they came across before moving off to the next button or lever, lolol.

We returned to the pre-school at 12pm. I let the girls take their usual school bus home at 1pm while I went to Borders for a look around. I got home at 1:30pm and went to sleep. I was really exhausted mentally and physically from today's field trip. I had a real nice nap until 4pm. =)

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Happy, Happy, Happy

Today, a former colleague and good friend, Min came back from Brisbane with her family for a visit.

It is really so wonderful to see her again. Min is a real funny girl and she always makes me laugh. As she is from Brisbane and I used to study at The University of Queensland (UQ), we ended up talking alot about Brisbane - the shopping malls, UQ, etc. We also talked about meeting up in Brisbane one of these days. Yes! Let's do that. Then we can go shopping at Indooroopilly, Chermside, South Bank Night Market, Eagle Pier Sunday Market, ... Ahhh, I WANT TO GO BACK TO BRISBANE! Lol. One of these days, Min, I will bring my girls back to Brisbane again and the fathers can look after the children while we go shopping. Game? Lol. :P You take care of yourself. Maybe we can meet up again before you return to Brisbane. :) Oh yes, many thanks for helping me to buy the Battlestar Galactica Season 1 & 2 DVD sets. Hee hee, may need your help to get BSG Season 3 when it is out. Lol. :P

I rushed home after work today because another good friend of mine, Hoon came over for dinner. We were supposed to bring my mother out for dinner at Marmalade Pantry to celebrate her birthday which is tomorrow actually. but my mother turned down the invite and decided to cook dinner for us instead. Sigh, we can't win her. Lol. Hoon bought my mother a fruit flan from Hilton Hotel as her birthday cake which we had after dinner. The fruit flan was really delicious. Yummy. Yes, I know I am over my sugar intake! :P I can already see my good friends shaking their heads at me and sighing away, lol. :P

Received some enbloc news after dinner. I would like to think it is good news but I don't want to get my hopes up high, in case I get disappointed. Will update you guys later once I am more sure.

Monday, 29 October 2007


I came home today just before noon after giving a talk in school to discover there was something wrong with the wireless Internet connection! I was most distraught!!! How could this have happened?! At 6:30am, I could still access the Internet but why not now??

I tried rebooting the system, I tried re-starting my laptop, I tried switching on and off the Internet console - SEVERAL times! Nothing worked, short of me taking the Internet console apart! SIGH! No choice, I took my laptop and went somewhere with Internet connection.

Yes, I can hear some friends saying, "Why the urgent need of the Internet?". No Internet, then how to log on to Facebook? No, I mean needed to do some work so I need the Internet connection? Err... really. :P I am addicted to Facebook? No lah, no more than the usual persons. No, I am not swimming "In the Nile". Serious.

Ok, FINE! I admit!


I am just VERY, VERY interested in Facebook. That's all! That doesn't count as addiction, right? I am NOT addicted to Facebook.

PS. The Internet is working again! Happiness. Yes, I am still NOT addicted to Facebook. :P

Sunday, 28 October 2007

Wedding Banquet

Tonight, we attended my close family friend's wedding banquet at The Ritz-Carlton. Her wedding was spread out over two days. Yesterday was the solemnisation and the Tea ceremony. Tonight was the wedding banquet. It was a good way to avoid being too stressed out.

My parent and I, together with the girl's father, were seated at different tables. My parent was seated with the family friend's extended family. The girls' father and I were seated with strangers. This time, we couldn't be seated with the other cousins :( because their respective parent-in-laws were also invited. But I was thankful we were seated very near to the stage, the 2nd table from the stage so I was near enough to the action on stage in order to get quite good photos (I think, lol) and close ups too.

Again, I was "commissioned" to take photos, lol. So I was walking up and down the aisle in my long dress trying to snap photos, lol. Strange sight indeed, vying with the professional photographer for a good spot but always getting blocked by him. Lol.

The food was quite tasty and the service was good. Sorry, no photos of food here because I was seated among initial strangers at first so quite shy to take photos like that, hahaha. After an hour or so, we were all became less shy and started talking and mingling with one another at the table. There were some pretty interesting conversations going on at our table, so the company was quite good and entertaining. I really adored the wedding favour. It is a miniature, you know, those traditional Chinese bamboo baskets where you use during weddings to put the things in, hmmm... you know what I am saying, right? Anyway, just look at the photo below, you will know what I am trying to say. Inside this tiny basket is a little bottle of honey. Really sweet, eh. No pun intended. :P

There were the usual bridal march-ins (3 times), a video highlights of the Wedding Day on 27 October 2007, and the speeches by the bridesmaid, the father of the bride (Uncle Peter), the best man and the wedding couple. The wedding banquet programme was a little behind schedule but it was really entertaining, especially Uncle Peter's speech. I always knew Uncle Peter was funny, but never knew he is that FUNNY, hahaha.

The wedding banquet ended close to 11:45pm which was rather late. But I totally enjoyed the food, the company of the other guests at my table and the taking of photos, lol. Maybe I should take up some photography courses, maybe can do photography as another part-time job, lolol. :P Below are some of the photos that I have taken of the ballroom decoration and of the cousins and I. :)

Marutama Ra-Men Lunch

Tonight, we are going for the wedding dinner of my close family friend who was solemnised yesterday. So for lunch, we thought we should have something light. What's light and suits us but Japanese food?! Lol.

We went to The Central as we haven't been there for ages. I wanted to try the ra-men restaurant on the 4th floor that was always crowded and had long queues. Yes, we got there early today. Too early in fact, we were the first customers at 11:30am! Hahaha. Talk about being kiasu, lol. :P

Marutama Ra-Men specialises only in ra-men. It has three kind of soup base for the ra-men - chicken soup, spicy chicken soup and chicken soup but cooked with 7 kinds of nuts. It has the various toppings which you could order as additionals to be put in your ra-men such as seasoned egg, seaweed, char siu, stewed pork belly, etc. It has about 6 or 7 side dishes which you could order to accompany your ra-men.

We ordered the Marutama Ra-Men ($12): chicken soup ra-men with toppings (a piece of char siu, seaweed and a generous sprinkling of spring onion). We varied in our choice of additional toppings - I ordered Ajitsuke tamago ($1): seasoned egg and the girls' father ordered Kakuni ($5): pork bellies stewed in soy sauce. The chicken soup was fantastic, full of flavour and not salty at all. The ra-men was springy and thin enough. The girls who shared the ra-men with us, totally enjoyed the ra-men, the soup and my egg! I didn't even get to try it. But it looked good as what a seasoned egg for authentic ra-men should look like, the yolk is almost hard but not yet, not exactly a yellow colour as in hard-boiled egg, but an orangy colour. Should have ordered two eggs. Lol.

For the side dishes, we ordered:
Daikon ($4) - steamed radish. The radish pieces were totally soft but not mushy and full of flavour as it has been stewed in broth.

Dashimaki Tamago ($8) - Japanese omelette. The girls' father totally loved it and said it was well-worth the price. I thought it was not too bad, at least better than those at Sakae Sushi, lol. :P

Tori Dango ($5) - stewed chicken meatballs. The chicken meatballs were really tender and they had pieces of onions and chilli flakes in them. Thank goodness, they weren't not spicy at all. The broth that came along with the meatballs was delicious too, light and fragrant.

Marutama Ra-Men is a definite HIT with us. The ra-men, the soup, the side dishes are really authentic. The taste is simply wonderful. Marutama Ra-Men is ran by a Japanese chef, no wonder, the high standards in taste. There were a lot of Japaneses eating at the restaurant. It is not a very big restaurant but the turn-over rate of customers is really high. Try to get there early to get a table. If you love Ra-Men, you will love Marutama Ra-Men!

PS. Will upload the photos later. Have to get ready for the wedding dinner. So please check back later. Thanks. :)

Happy 5th Birthday, Abel.

Sending a little boy who's 5 today,
Big hugs and kisses,
On this your special day.
Happy 5th Birthday, Abel!

Here's our long-distance wishes to you in UK from Singapore's 姑妈, 姑丈, Marieann 姐姐 and Juliane 妹妹. Have a really happy day, my dear nephew. Hope you liked your present.

PS. 姑妈 has posted the food photos that you love looking at so much. :) Will try to post more photos of food, ok? But bear with 姑妈. It is a bit difficult now because Ah Ma doesn't really like us to eat out so often, not healthy and expensive. :P Shhh... don't tell Ah Ma, I tell you that, ok? ;)

Saturday, 27 October 2007

Happy Birthday Dinner

Tonight, we went to Lawry's for my birthday celebration.

I quite like the whole ambiance of the restaurant. =) Thank goodness, the girls were well-behaved, lol.

The girls ordered from the Kids Special which came with a starter, main course and dessert:
Starters: Soup of the Day - Cream of Roasted Carrot. It was really delicious.
Main Course: Kid's Burger ($19.80++) - Chicken burger char-grilled with melted cheddar cheese, fried egg, sliced tomato, lettuce and served with French fries and tomato sauce.
Dessert: Marieann ordered Haagen Dazs Strawberry Ice cream while Juliane ordered the oven-baked Pecan Nut Brownie Cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (Haagen Dazs) and covered with chocolate hot fudge, garnished with light whipping cream and maraschino cherry and chopped pistachio nuts. The brownie was to die for, lol. Ok, maybe because I haven't had any brownie in ages. (NB: I only took a two teaspoon, lol) The girls also each received a free juice and free gift. Nice touch.

For the adults, when we ordered the main course, they came with Lawry's The Famous Original Spinning Bowl Salad. The salad was a blend of crisp romaine and iceberg lettuce, watercress, shredded beets, chopped eggs and croutons, and tossed with an exclusive vintage dressing in a salad bowl spun on a bed of ice. The girls were really intrigued by the the spinning bowl salad. The salad was really nice, fresh and crisp.

My father ordered a Tequila Salmon ($43.80++) The salmon was almond Coated and pan seared, accompanied with three different canapes: a crispy corn tortilla spoon with tomato salsa, tiger prawns with caviar, and sun dried tomato cream cheese with pistachio nuts on toast. The salmon was served with a lemon grass cream sauce, Idaho mashed potatoes, pan seared asparagus and roasted cherry tomatoes. Didn't get to try it but it looked good. :)

The girls' father ordered Fresh Fish Selection ($43.80++) - sea bream with melted cheddar cheese, topped with mussels and bacon and served with assorted vegetables. I wasn't listening to the server when she was describing the catch of the day. When it came, I was also more interested in my own main course, lol. Sorry, just try to guess from the photo if it was good. :P

Both my mother and I ordered the Seafood Maryland ($78.80++). It is a seafood foursome of: an Atlantic lobster tail with caviar cheese sauce, pan seared almond coated salmon fillet with lemon grass sauce, a pan fried sea scallop stuffed with prunes and served with a sweet balsamic vinegar sauce, and a Champagne batter deep fried banana king prawn with a citrus tartar sauce. Served with Idaho mashed potatoes and assorted vegetables. I thought it was sumptuous! The portion was just right and not too heavy. The various sauces went quite well with its respective seafood except for the caviar cheese sauce which was a little too salty but overall, it was good!! Simply heaven. :)

There was a "surprise" birthday cake for me and singing of "Happy Birthday" by the staff of Lawry's. It was nice. The girls were more excited than I was and wanted to blow out my candle for me, lol. We blew it out together and I made a wish. Shhh... can't tell or it won't come true, lol.

It has been a most lovely birthday. Throughout today, I have received birthday wishes from family and friends via SMSes, emails, Facebook, and phone calls. I received a few gifts too. Thank you very much, my family and friends. I really appreciate and treasure all the well wishes that you have sent my way. Thank you.

Happy Wedding

I decided to have multiple posts for today. Otherwise a single post would be far too long and I might lose some people along the way. :P

At noon, I attended a close family friend whom I grew up together, J's solemnisation at her husband-to-be, KW's place in Katong. KW's place was beautifully decorated for the solemnisation ceremony. I braved the sun and walked around the courtyard taking lots of photos. :)

There was buffet lunch first followed by the solemnisation ceremony. As I wanted to get good shots, I sat in the second row so as to be nearer to the action. And guess who came along and sat right next to me? Mr and Mrs Mah Bow Tan, lol. I laughed because Mr Mah is the Minister for National Development of Singapore. Any enbloc matters, he is the man. Hahaha. Don't worry, I know my manners and I held my tongue. It is a joyous occasion, no talking shop. Hahaha. (Aiya, missed opportunity, lol :P) At least, I took a photo with Mrs Mah, lol. :P

It was beautiful (and HOT) weather. The ceremony was beautiful too. I managed to take quite a number of good photos (perfect lighting and composite, if I may say so, lol :P). The wedding couple looked great together. Perfect weather, perfect ceremony, perfect wedding, perfect couple!

Here are some of the photos I have taken (I think I became an unofficial photographer, hahaha :P)