Monday, January 31, 2011

Man shall not live by bread alone

Today's lunch. Home-made egg mayo on softmeal bread, hot milo... And
the gospel of Matthew. A nice quiet lunch while it poured outdoors.

Wet Wet Wet

I do so love moody grey days and incessant rain, but this weather puts
a real dampener on getting to work. On a monday morning, to boot (pun
somewhat intended...wait for it...)

On a day like this, when it seems like the sun is busy sleeping, jeans and
boots make it tolerable - fun, even - to get to work in the rain. I'll
have to change later but my toes are warm and toasty - well worth the
effort. Have a grey I mean great week.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Laduree box


Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dinner, tapao-ed

Continuing the musings on food in Singapore... How convenient to be
able to nip over to a hawker centre and ta-pao bak chor mee, satay,
orh-luat, sambal squid... It's quite a rojak of cultures, if you ask

Dum bryani at Masala Hut

There was a day in which I had a farewell lunch for a longtime
colleague at little India. I like how Indian food is part and parcel
of Singapore life.

I suppose this isn't a very polished review but here goes: the chicken
was tender, the curry delicious and the papadam super crunchy. And the
deep fried cauliflower FELT healthy (I mean, cauliflower!) even though
it really wasn't...

It's a grey day

I like! (well, only because I'm home)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Flea Market, Haji Lane

Back in December, I helped out at Chelle's make-shift stall.

I had fun arranging the displays and helping to sell things.

The crowd was pretty good - a steady stream of people through the afternoon, and people who were interested in quirky stuff.

In between helping out, I popped into the regular shops on Haji Lane (aircon!).

There were some pretty displays. I ended up buying more things from the regular shops than from the flea market, like from Soon Lee, below. It's full of beautiful things and smells great.

My necklace from Soon Lee is a new favourite!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Strawberry jelly & cheesecake

There was a day in which Bee, a dear friend of mine at work, popped
over to my floor with this unexpected treat. I was plodding along on a
rather blue morning and along she came with a delightful surprise. How
nice to be thought of! :)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Bees & a strange yellow flower

Have a meaningful & satisfying week!

Photo: I risked my life, dear reader, to bring you this shot of wildlife...

Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Kite in a Tree

This looks like it might be in a temperate country but it's not.

I was on a walk with my mum and was drawn to the bright colours of the kite, stuck in a tree. I like how it looks like a bird. I like the sparseness of the leaf-less tree in the early morning light.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Baking with my grandma

Today's unexpected adventure:
I made pineapple tarts with my grandma.
It's like art and craft, just that this is edible :)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Grateful Thoughts

At first I took this shot because of the interesting east-meets-west juxtaposition (but then again, didn't Marco Polo bring back spaghetti from China...). I imagined some interesting conversations between the Italian spaghetti and the Chinese mee sua...

But then I thought of how blessed I am to have so much choice at my fingertips. When the question is 'what to eat' and not 'whether we will eat'. I want to live with an attitude of contentment and gratefulness.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Before & After: Flowers from Ikea

My mum enjoyed these flowers thoroughly.
They are much better value than a bouquet that lasts just a few days, though I suppose they wouldn't be considered too romantic :)

Monday, January 17, 2011

Random Photo Day!

Have a fabulous week ahead!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Like a kid in a candy store

Happened to pass by this shop at Central Mall and lo and behold, it's the shop that my Christmas candy came from. I have always loved watching the live displays of cakes being decorated, and this was pretty cool to watch too.The candy comes in a roll that gets chipped off skillfully into smaller pieces.

The Red Kitchen Aid

On my previous Bali trip, I made birthday cupcakes. Boy, it was fun keeping it a surprise and whipping up a storm at 1120pm, i.e. shortly before midnight. The villa staff were so helpful and helped to gather the essentials like oil and butter, as well as this kitchen aid mixer!

So I mentioned this to my family when I got back home.

To cut a long story short, some time later, my brother suggested that we get our mother a KA for Christmas. Mostly out of practicality, we don't often get our immediate family presents unless there's something they particularly want or need. This year would be different, though.

We embarked on an investigation of market prices and debating which colour machine to get. Oh, it was tough. I even tried to engage my mother in a hypothetical which-colour-machine-would-you-like conversation (without much luck).

To speed up the story even more:
We ended up getting a red KA because there was a major sale happening online in the States and it was on sale. Even with shipping - and with the need to use a transformer because of the voltage difference - it was still worth our while to buy it online.

Then we hit a snag - shipping delays! We waited and pretended like we didn't have a present for my parents, which wasn't too hard to do.

The Christmas gift came a few days after Christmas, and my mum was thrilled. Thrilled enough to call my aunt (who was already in on the secret) and relate the thrilled that she couldn't go to thrilled that we did some cleaning and moving that very night and settled the KA into its permanent spot in the kitchen...

The mixer purrs like the Ferrari of mixers and it's beautiful to watch. Just a mixer, you might say...but a gift that we'll likely be talking about for many years to come :)

Special thanks to the BFF for helping to chase the fedex guys... oh and my old mixer was adopted by my aunt. The End.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


I've had such a good start to the weekend, jam-packed (literally, come to think of it) with good food and company, fun and hanging out. Lovely.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Marks & Spencer's Tea Boxes

(and a shout-out to occasional perusers of this blog who are tea fanatics... :)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Christmas Candy

A friend gave me a jar of super-cute handmade candy from sticky for Christmas.

Too cute! They're tiny works of art and they taste pretty good, too. They can be customised and I think they'd be great for special events.

I brought them to a meeting at work but I was heartily amused to see the guys at the meeting wolf them down (and a couple at a time...) without so much as a glance at the patterns! Talk about mars and venus...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Mushroom, Long Beans & Dried Shrimp Porridge

"...porridge with a delectable combination of mushrooms, minced meat, dried shrimps and diced long beans cooked stir-fried together and mixed into the porridge pot. Ooh, it's the best." - Manda, "My official Saturday food" (6 Sep 2008)
What? You mean I haven't shown you photos yet?

Oops. It's been languishing in a folder on my desktop.

Just a small sidetrack: I love the smell of these mushrooms. They look ugly but taste so good. But I say 'ugly' with affection because they're actually fascinating when you look really close, beautifully textured (and they smell yummy, at least to me).

This is my kind of comfort food. The kind of food that my aunt would feed to a few of us cousins from the same bowl/spoon while we watched tv or ran around the house.

It's quite easy-peasy, this porridge. Boil porridge in a big pot. Slice & soak mushrooms & dried shrimps (hei-bee). The minced pork shown here is in a frozen block, but anyway when it thaws, season with salt, pepper, light soya sauce, a little dash of black soya sauce if you like it dark like I do, and corn starch. All quantities based on aggaration... Also slice long beans (not shown here). Then stir-fry the minced pork, mushrooms, shrimps, long beans. Chuck this stir-fried mixture into the pot with the cooked porridge and stir it in. Leave to sit.

Add garnishing - sliced spring onions & chilli padi, fried shallots, and voila.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

This is i Elizabeth...

In my family, I'm generally the one who spots a movie that my mum, aunts/cousins will love (read: heartwarming, bring-on-the-tissue-paper). So when I heard about this book, I thought my mum would also enjoy it. Written by a former school Principal, the book is written breezily and humorously about her life growing up, the perks of being squint-eyed (not having your chicken drumsticks stolen at the dinner table), her journey through school ranks, touching the lives of students and living a full life (mountain-climbing!) despite facing cancer (twice). I myself had great times growing up with lots of family around me, and spending weekends at Changi Beach, so I enjoyed reading her account. So did my mum (usually a reluctant reader) and my dad.

And as a bonus, I spotted the mention of my friend Ian's mother in the book! Well I didn't know at the time that it was his mother but I felt sure they were related so I checked with him and found out. How cool is it to have a former student write a whole paragraph about how you touched her life? Anyway, I was pleased to be able to give Ian's mother a copy of the book, with a bookmark stuck in there to mark the page :)

A literary voice can make a positive impact in the world just as well as any choir. Proceeds from the book go to Goducate, a non-profit organisation started by 3 Singaporean Christians. Goducate aims to help poor Asians to help themselves in ways that I think are meaningful e.g. not simply handouts for the community but identifying the real needs and working with the community to initiate self-help projects (FAQs about Goducate are found here).

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Day, 2011

Photo: My aunty Lil's lovingly-baked chicken pie!

Thinking about the year ahead and my hopes, dreams and prayers both for myself and those reading this, I find that the Bible in Hebrews 12:2 puts it really neatly:

"...let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of God".

So many things can pull us down, distract us, fill our lives with such busy-ness and needless worry. As the old song goes: And the things of earth will grow strangely dim - in the light of Your glory and grace.

I want to live this year simply, gratefully, purposefully, with God...
  • Treasuring family and friends.
  • Living simply, thankfully, healthily, joyfully.
  • Living as a good steward of what God has given me.
  • Living in God's wisdom, by His word, with His presence so strong in my life.
  • Being a blessing to others, especially to those in need.
Have a blessed 2011.