I dreamt of my baby

It’s the last month before life changes forever next month. And this morning, I had the first dream of my baby.

In my dream, I was frantic and was wondering what I had missed out. Then I realise I have a baby.. and she’s out. She was sleeping soundly in a cot, in the room where DR and I were in when we were still staying with my parents. I peeked into the cot, and she was sucking her pacifier, sleeping soundly. Mom was also standing near me.

“She looks like me when I was a baby,” I thought in my dream.

Then I woke up… and I felt God assuring me that my baby will be out to see us soon… counting down to end Jan 2018!

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Things you need in your fridge

Realise this was in the draft. Since I am now on WordPress, let’s get this published!

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DR and I enjoy grocery shopping together. After staying on our own for slightly more than 1 year (oh my goodness… Where did time go??), these are the things we buy most often/need minimally in stock at home to survive:
1. Carrots

2. Eggs

3. Cheese

4. Garlic

5. Seasonings (e.g. salt, sugar, soy sauce, oyster sauce)

6. Navel oranges (because they are sweet and easy to eat as fruits)

7. Apples (only NZ’s Pacific Rose apples allowed in the house… They are the best!)

8. Greenfields milk

9. Rice

10. Nissin and Myojo instant noodles

11. Yakult 

12. Fruit juice 

What skincare/cosmetic products to buy in Korea?

After my trip to Korea just this July, I’ve been wearing a little bit more make-up. I bought some products to try since they were relatively cheaper than many cosmetic brands from the US or those distributed in Singapore.

Mantra to Korea trippers – when in Korea, buy their skincare products!

So I googled and found a list of skincare products people buy when they head there. It was useful to guide me when I was tearing down Myeongdong in a race against time. Don’t judge – I only had 1 to 2 hours left to shop all the cosmetics I wanted to get for myself and others before the shops close! So I needed to get the essentials!

Anyway, here’s a picture of my loot first! It’s everything I’ve bought for friends, colleagues and family.

20141011-005220.jpg

Here’s my list of things cosmetics/skincare products you may wish to buy/stock up when in South Korea! Like buying clothes wholesale, the more you buy, the more discounts and exclusive freebie sets you get at these Korean cosmetic shops.
1. Banila Co’s Clean It Zero Make-up remover (the pink box at the extreme right of the picture)
2. Laneige’s Water Sleeping pack. It costs about SGD$25 when you get it from this shop called Aritaum. I also bought one at the airport before I flew back to Singapore. I thought it would be way more expensive but surprisingly, it only costs me about SGD$27 when I paid with my credit card! They give more discounts if you buy 8 of them! Still not too pricey considering the price it’s selling at in Singapore.
3. Innisfree Super Volcanic Clay Pore Mask; quite helpful in stripping dead skin cells.
4. Banila Co. Primer; cheaper than Benefit’s (it costs about SGD$24 if I’m not wrong) but has almost the same effect!
5. Tony Moly snail masks; I hear people raving about it so I’ll just add this on my list. On a side note, ever since I discovered My Beauty Diary masks, I’ve decided they are more effective than Korean masks. Hehe…
6. Étude House’s lip tints; cheap and good… They cost about SGD$4 for a handy tub.
7. Skin Food’s Black Sugar mask which is actually more like a scrub.
8. Laneige or Innisfree BB cushion
9. Pink lipsticks! From places like Banila Co., or The Face Shop.

Leave me a comment if you know of any skincare or cosmetic product one must definitely get when in Korea! I’m keen to know (:

Feeling September

September – with summer almost over and autumn drawing near, feels like a month of reflection. I can’t believe that we are now only left with 3 months to the end of 2014!

I am turning 27 this month, and I am exceptionally pensive. While I feel old, my Director kept telling me that I am still young. Being 27 is actually a good place to be at to make changes as I have yet to carry the full load of responsibilities of an adult (e.g. kids + management of staff at work + elderly parents), and there seems to be still a little bit more time before you hit the big-and-very-mature-sounding “30”. 

Okay, enough of emo-ing! Sometimes, I realise I think too much, imagine too much that I’ve failed to enjoy my present life and realise that I have so many things to learn from my current experiences. I think one thing I have learned this year is to live in the present, and stop fretting about what would happen in the future or whether I am fulfilling my calling, or whatever. While I remember my calling, I believe also that each step I take, no matter how illogical it may seem to me, is always within God’s plan. Calling or no calling, the important thing I should seek is having God in my everyday. 

Anyway, I would like to share with you all about my new hobby – reading up about house renovation! I want to arm myself with as much information I can so that I don’t become some ID/Contractor’s “carrot”. Also, I am starting to research on how our home would be like – Scandinavian/industrial/resort style? I see so many people going for the Scandinavian style… which I think in layman terms, is the Ikea style lah… hahaha. 

I also amazed myself by coming up with a rather decent house planning spreadsheet. This Excel spreadsheet provides me a reference for my budget, decor ideas, a list of IDs/contractors to consider, and useful links to take note that could help me in appliance/furnishing shopping/renovation! I used to be so frightened of using Excel. But because of my work, I guess Excel doesn’t seem too daunting in the end 🙂 Yup, I’ve grown professionally! Heh. 

Quirky household items I want

DR and I were browsing kitchen ware and products at Tangs, after walking past the absurd, snaking queue for fried dough at the newly open Krispy Kreme. Similar to Krispy Kreme, there were a lot of products over there that were more of a “want” than a “need”.  Nespresso machines, honey syrup spoons, Le Creuset pots…. etc. I have always been a strong advocate for buying “need” products. On the other hand, I find some “want” products quirky, fascinating… and wouldn’t mind having them at our new place –  if only I can convince myself that they are worth it.

Presenting you the top 3 household items that I want:

1) Sodastream – It allows you to carbonate beverages (yes, if you want to carbonate milk, you can do so, though I doubt people like fizzy milk… *yucks*). We saw the demonstration by the sales lady and it was incredible. Without batteries and electricity, you get to fizz up your drink with a help of a carbonator (a slim, pressurised can of carbon dioxide). Each carbonator allows us to fizz up to 60 litres of water. When it finishes, you can buy refills either from Tangs or Taka.

Imagine a cooling, fizzy ribena or lemon tea or juice drinks, any time at home! Sparkling water every day, if you like!

2) Yonanas – Touting itself as a healthy dessert maker, this could be a must-have for many when one feels like having ice-cream on a humid day but don’t want the fats that come from the milk. Basically, what you do is freeze the fruits (works best with bananas and berries), place the frozen fruit in the small machine, pull the lever down and voila, frozen fruit soft serve – minus the fats!  I may get this for our new place. It is good for entertaining guests (:

3) Vintage tea cups – I will feel like a princess when I drink from vintage tea cups! Look at the picture below. Isn’t it lovely? Now it needs some hot scones and jam at the side.

Sharing my Taipei + Taichung six-day itinerary – in anticipation of my upcoming trip

I will be heading to Taiwan end of this August. Yup, people have been telling or rather exclaiming to me that it is going to be really hot and humid during that period. Roger that. Oh wells, for really cheap tickets (promotion from Scoot), I guess Sarah and I were ready to face any kind of weather. WHO CARES ABOUT THE HOT WEATHER! Ok, I am concerned about getting tanned 😦 BUT. I will bring sunblock and my trusty umbrella along. I have plans to buy Kose Sun Protect Gel (SPF 50) when I fly off to Taiwan, to protect myself, Sarah, Mum and Nainai against the merciless sun.

And yes, you heard it right. It is just going to be us – 3 generations of women holidaying together.

As I was surfing for some possible itineraries for our week-long trip, I recalled the wonderful trip I had with DR just late last year to Taiwan. Love the company and exploration we did together as husband and wife. He is a great travelling companion. He is meticulous and resourceful. I am very easy-going. In addition, we have similar interests (shopping and eating at the night markets, cycling, nua-ing in hotel room), so it’s easy to travel together.

Anyway, I shall share with my readers the itinerary of my last trip as I gear up for the upcoming trip. Hopefully you will find this reference useful if you are planning for a six-day trip to Taiwan in December/January.

MY TAIPEI + TAICHUNG ITINERARY (29 Dec 2012 – 4 Jan 2013)

Date Activities
29 Dec 12 (Sat) – Land at Taoyuan Airport at 5.45am

– Put luggages at Hotel 73 (near Dongmen station) – Check in only at 3pm

– Head to Ximending and have Ah Zhong Mee Sua

– Chiang Kai-Sheik Memorial Hall

– Walk 10 min to Raohe Night Market

– Raohe Night Market饶河夜市 (Houshanpi station)

30 Dec 12 (Sun) – Attend church service – Taipei Bread of Life Church 台北市南京東路二段139號B1 (near Songjiang Nanjing Station)

– Head to Shihlin station. Arrive at National Palace Museum (NT$160/pax) by latest 2pm

– Shihlin Night Market (Jian Tan station)

31 Dec 12 (Mon) – Travel to Ruifang station

– Shi Da Night Market (Must eat: Lu Wei, red lantern)

– Countdown near Taipei 101 (ideally…. but this did not happen cos we ended up nua-ing in our hotel room, watching the countdown on TV)

– *Cannot go wufenpu on Monday as most suppliers will be on leave

1 Jan 2013 (Tue) – Take 11.54am High-Speed Rail (Train No. 1147) to Taichung (book tickets through: http://www.thsrc.com.tw/en/ (50 min)

– Arrive at Taichung TSR at 12.43pm

– Check in at Doris Home (near Sun Moon Lake) from 2pm onwards

– Go cycling around Sun Moon Lake

 

2 Jan 13 (Wed) – Check out of Doris Home at 11am

– Travel from Sun Moon Lake to Fengjia (~ 1 hour)

– Put our luggages at Beacon Hotel (estimated to reach at 12pm) as check in only at 3pm (For transport, we rented a cab outside the hotel for NT$2200 for the entire day from 12.30 – 6pm)

Carton King Creativity Park 紙箱王創意園區-大坑店: 台中市406北屯區東山路二段二巷二號〈大坑圓環前〉

Lavender Cottage (薰衣草森林), 20 Zhongxing St, Xinshe district

Summit Resort (Please don’t go there…. It was really boring and the food prices, exorbitant!)

Mushroom Garden (百菇莊)

Fengjia Night Market (try the Guan Zhi Ling 大肠包小肠 – I like it!)

3 Jan 13 (Thu) – Check out of Beacon Hotel at 12pm

– Take free bus from Fengjia to Taichung HSR – 45 minutes

– Board 1.35pm HSR (Train No. 652) to Taipei (1 hour)

– Arrive at Taipei HSR at 2.36pm

– Check in to iTaipei Service Apartment at 3pm.

Raohe/Shihlin Night Market

– Dinner at MALA YUANYANG HOTPOT 馬辣鴛鴦火鍋 @ Ximending

 

4 Jan 13 (Fri) – Travel to Ximending for Ah Zhong Mee Sua

– Be back in hotel at 12pm

– Be at Taoyuan Airport at 1.45/2pm; flight at 3.45pm

 

 

Don’t pay late!

The price of late payment for my UOB credit card?

$20.36 for paying two days late. This translates to paying out $10.18 in interest per day!! $%^&*^&*

I was aghast when I saw the amount of interest I had to pay for being late. So, please, remember to pay your credit card bills promptly. It’s really not worth paying the penalty for late payment with such a high interest rate… :/

 

[Post-edit: Found out that I was actually charged $50 for late charges and $20.36 for interests! Gave a call to UOB to get them to waive these late charges.. I will know whether I get the waiver next month.]

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