Wednesday, June 23, 2010

OH NO!!!

SHUCKS. I've exceeded the total quota for photograph uploads on this particular blog. *sob Sob*. I think I shall go and create a new blog. Will post details here soon.

another trip back -eh sian boey???

This entry is aptly titled because my fatherinlaw was hospitalised after a minor op to remove a growth recently. Because of this sudden ailment, we drove back to Singapore to visit him, just a few days after touching down on KL soil from Melbourne.

10 June 2010 (Thursday)

Alan got off work and the three of us got into the car and endured the long journey back again. It was around 6+pm when we got to Tiong Bahru Plaza - I had to make a stop to pick up diapers and puree for Ethan. We also popped by Eu Yan San to buy Ah Ma and Daddy some tonics.

We got into the Volvo again and attempted to drive away and head for my inlaw's but the car was too heavy and Alan had parked too deep into the lot and the bumper got stuck with the concrete divider. My goodness. It took a while before my Iron Man (Alan lah) solved the issue. Of course, although the human traffic was heavy at the car park, no Singaporean stopped and offered to help. It was expected.

We headed finally to Ye Ye and Nai Nai's house. By then, it had turned dark and was after half past 8. We chatted and after dinner left for my mum's place.

11 June 2010 (Friday)

After fetching my mum from her office and marking the start of her retirement, we drove again to YeYe's house. After a simple lunch, Alan met with a contractor to settle some renovation stuff. In the evening, we went to Great World City to pick up some plates necessary for a photoshot the day after.

Dinner was at Ichiban. I wolfed down by cold soba and then whisked Ethan away and the both of us had a good time in the beautiful Baby Care Room in the shopping mall, a stone's throw away from the restaurant. :)

12 June 2010 (Saturday)

Alan had an appt in the morning so my mum, Ethan and I headed to Great World City ourselves in a taxi. We settled all our bank stuff by noon and then went back to YeYe's house to view the photoshoot.

Next, it was to Yvonne's Fernwood condo for a swim with Ethan's cousin, Tyler. :) This was Ethan's first time in the big pool and he actually enjoyed himself thoroughly. He also sat in Tyler's blown-up toy car and started munching on the wheel. haahhaha.

After our showers, we had a yummy dinner at Chat Masala's - Jean's treat with her first pay cheque! :) Thanks Sis!

13 June 2010 (Sunday)

It was almost 1pm when we reached Millennia Walk. We had wanted to park at Marina Sq but the CP was full. Anyway, since Harvey Norman was having a sale (GSS) and my mum was complaining that her TV was making weird noises, we bought her a new tv for the living room. Now she will not entertain the thought of absconding with the one in my room :P

At 2pm, we met Kala (OMG Kala was the only one on time for once), Elaine, Leo and Wan Hui for lunch and dessert at the Japanese restaurant next to Billy Bombers at Marina Square. Alan and I enjoyed our scallop ramen and creamy icecream with dumplings and red bean paste. After chitchatting and showing them our Melbourne pics, we bade e/o farewell and headed to the baby department. I wanted a Baby Sign Language DVD for Ethan. I had read in the forum that since he hasn't developed talking, it would greatly aid communication between him and I (etc) if he could pick up sign lang and sign whatever he wants to tell me. :)

We popped into Swensen's next to pick up an icecream cake for my MIL's bday and then zoomed to Tung Lok at ECP (where we were to have dinner) to store the cake in their freezer. After picking Jean and my mum from home, we met Alan's side of the family at Tung Lok.

After getting irritated (that's putting it mildly) with my MIL for feeding Ethan birdsnest although I had insisted NO, the dinner progressed smoothly on. *sigh* I was VERY PISSED OFF over that incident and had a sleepless night that night. She kept asking me if she could feed him whilst I kept saying "NO" because I was unsure and I hadn't done any research on babies eating birdsnest this early in their lives. This happened for about three times until I was so angry - you could see my face turning red. My totally unaware husband was happily ordering food and blissfully ignorant. :PPPPP

It is suffice to say that in the end, The MIL had her way. So one wonders, WHY THE FUCK you wanna ask me for MY PERMISSION??? ok enough. I don't wanna think about this incident any more. *blood boil* It's good to live away from Spore and just visit once in a while.

14 June 2010 (Monday)

Yes, FINALLY I can return to peaceful KL. Alan wanted to pick up a bag to house his camera so he deposited my mum (who was going to enjoy retirement for a while in KL), myself and Ethan at Raffles City whilst he headed to Peninsula Plaza. We met Ye Ye there and shopped in The Market Place to use the vouchers Alan had received last year.

I picked up some stuff for the house and also purees for Ethan - those dessert type and some biscuits. When Alan finally joined us, it was time for lunch and we had that in Mos Burger. After that, we sent Ye Ye home and then zoomed back to KL - Home, Sweet Home!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Our First Long Family Trip to Down Under

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls.....

WE ARE BACK FROM WINTERY MELBOURNE! Hahahahah. I wanted to log on to update my blog since Monday but a couple of factors prevented that:

a) Too tired. The trip was as exhausting as it was fun and enjoyable so Alan and I caught up on our much-needed rest when we arrived home on 7th June at around noon.

b) Our internet is down. Due to a massive thunderstorm on 1 June, our phone line has been fried and we therefore cannot log on. Must thank my neighbour today, for 'lending' us use of his wireless internet. muahahaha. Hope the signal stays strong....

c) We headed for a massage on the evening of 7th June to relieve our sore muscles - it's not easy lunging a baby around, u know? and yesterday, Alan was still on leave and so we popped by Bill's for a hair cut as well. :D

Let me now relive the magic of our wonderful trip :)

27 May 2010 (Thursday)

Happy 3rd Year Wedding Anniversary to Alan and me! :D Uncle Raymond came over a tad late, for once, and he drove us in the Volvo to KLIA to catch our 650pm flight to Singapore. We transitted in Singapore for only an hour + and scampered to buy Alan's facial cleanser and then board our connecting flight at 9pm to Melbourne.

We sat next to a Taiwanese born JJ Lin look-alike who had been bred in Melbourne and spoke English with an Aussie drawl. He was very nice and accomodating and very interesting to talk to. Alan and him chatted most of the way whilst I struggled with Ethan, who fussed a bit and who pooped twice. Ethan, of course, refused to sleep in the bassinet and I carried him throughout the 7 hr flight. hahhaa. What a way to start the holiday!

28 May 2010 (Friday)

When we arrived at the MEL, it was only 620am. We lost 1 neck cushion of Ethan's which was attached to the stroller (which was placed in the cargo) *sigh* Strolling to get our car and in no particular hurry, we headed to Thrifty, just outside the airport. They allocated us a rather new SUV but apparently a maintenance message was flashed on the dashboard. Being Australian (read: very nuar), the guy insisted that it was OK for travel and did not offer to change the car for us. We, however, did not want to take any chances - esp since we were travelling with a 7 month old baby. So Alan insisted on a change. We were finally given another car. ;)

The GPS took us literally in circles for the start of the journey to Phillip Island. By the time we got to our hotel, we were certainly exhausted. We grabbed a wrap and a roll respectively and then popped into COLES to pick up some necessities. The avocados were HUGE and CHEAP and so I bought one for Ethan to try. I also needed purees for our baby. There were SO MANY different flavours that we were spoilt for choice. Finally, I settled on pear, pear and banana, apple, chicken noodles etc, mashed sweet veges, mashed golden veges etc...

then checked into Phillip Island All Seasons Eco Retreat. The studio was nice and lovely and all three of us proceeded to shower and catch up with lost sleep till around 430pm.
Then, we got ready for the exciting event - watching the Penguin Parade! We zoomed to the nearby Penguin Parade and collected our audio sets. We had paid around A$40/ pax to view the little furry sea creatures at close range and so we got to sit at the grandstands just next to the beach. The penguins would walk right past us on the boardwalk and head to their burrows. hahhaa.

Soon, dusk fell and the penguins appeared in herds (?) all of a sudden. It was like they were waiting 'backstage' for the lights to go off. They waddled in , wary of the peering faces but soon lost their fears. Off and on, one or two penguins would relax under the platforms where we were standing to wait for their lagging peers. haahha. Very interesting. Ethan was most amazed by the sight as well. Alan carried him very close up to view the penguins and he stared intently at them and then at Alan, as if questioning him about the birds' identities. hahahaa.
After hundreds of penguins had come in, we made our way into the warm building and browsed the Penguin Parade shop, buying a small keepsake magnet. Deciding that it was already too late (around 6+pm) to venture out to look for food, we settled dinner at the cafeteria and enjoyed our two free hot chocolate drinks and a lagsana and a delicious pumpkin salad. YUM YUM!

After we fed Ethan and all of us had our warm baths, we collasped back into the comfy bed and ZzzzzzzzzzZzzz.

29 May 2010 (Saturday)

Since we were allowed a later check-out, we checked out at noon and then drove back to the city. I suggested hitting QVM (that was around 1+pm) as I did not want to incurr extra parking charges in the hotel. We shopped a little (but it was nearing closing time) and bought Ethan a THREE DOLLAR 2-piece swim suit and some clothes. We were also thrilled to see that the fruits and veges were going for a song as all the stalls were about to close. We picked up some bananas and some grapes.

Rachel (Yeo), my ex-student, met us for a late lunch at ard 2+pm and we headed to Nando's. I didnt have a v good impression of Nando's as the ones in KL are not fabulous but the Australian ones did not disappoint. hahaha I guess there's a good reason why Singaporeans love their chicken from that restaurant.

After catching up, we checked into Causeway 353 Hotel at Lil Collins St. The hotel was very nice buttttttttttttt we had to park quite far away as there was no private parking facilities. OMG. It wasn't easy with Ethan and the two huge luggages and the stroller and etc etc... but somehow Alan managed it (admist cursing and swearing and sweating).

Dinner was downstairs at the restaurant and bar after we had fed Ethan in the room. Big mistake. We knew afterwards that it was much better to feed him whilst we were eating to keep him occupied. ahahaha. Alan had a delicious Scotch Fillet (beef) and I had a Duck Confit Salad ( during the earlier days of the trip, I was still concerned about my waistline.... :P)

30 May 2010 (Sunday)

We were supposed to meet my ex-colleage from CGS today but she cancelled last minute due to a leaking pipe in her new house. So three of us headed to the Arts Market at Southbank. The market was very small but we managed to buy Ethan 2 pairs of shoes for A$35 (discount $5) and 4 bars of soap and a beautiful wooden photo frame for A$15.

I carried Ethan on the harness as he did not enjoy sitting in his stroller ;P It was a good workout. We crossed the the bridge and walked to Flinder Stn etc then decided to walk back to the car. After parking the car again at the original car park it had been parked within walking distance to the hotel, we headed to Crumpler for Alan to splurge again. He bought a nice brown and orange camera bag which immediately housed our video camera and his GF1.

Then, we walked in search of Swanston Street to a fantastic and well-known Vietnamese 'restaurant', MeKong for our Phoa fix. We each had a big bowl of beef tendon and slices phoa and shared two huge rice paper rolls. Alan's iced coffee was delicious and my almond drink did not disappoint. After the meal, we were stuffed. Thankfully, Ethan slept throughout our indulgence, in his stroller. YaY.

We walked back to Causeway 353 after that and fed Ethan puree. Because our lunch was so heavy and late, we ate fruits for dinner hours later...

31st May 2010 (Monday)

Alan was majorly pissed off this morning. We checked out of the hotel at around 10am as we wanted to go GOR earlier. Ethan and I waited for him at the lobby whilst he went to drive the car to the hotel for us to load the luggages. He returned once, sheepish that he had forgotten to validate the car park ticket and proceeded off again.

Then, he returned again cursing and swearing because apparently the Indian lady at the concierge did not do a proper job in the validation and the ticket was still not validated! My poor husband spent the whole morning walking to and fro (from hotel to carpark and back). By the time we finally loaded the luggages onto the car and set off, it was already 1110am :P

We set off to the GOR but accidentall took the inland route which eventually got us to our destination abit faster :) Enroute to our self-contained cottage at Lavers Hill, we stopped by Apollo Bay to have lunch. There were a few cafes open but fate brought us to Apollo Bay Seafood Cafe. The decor wasn't much - but the fooooooooooood was gooooooood. Both of us had fish and chips and we added battered scallops to the sin as well. The batter was so light and the fish and scallops naturally sweet and fresh. I actually finished all my chips as well (I normally don't really eat fries) as they were made to perfection! 10/10!

We drove to the Fauna Wildlife Sanctuary and checked into our Wombat Cottage with Kirsten to welcome us. After poor Alan lugged the luggages from the car into the cottage using a not-so-well-oiled trolley, we took a short strol outside our cottage.
Just directly outside, we found two Southern Long nosed Wombats. They looked like pigs and not your typical wombat you find in the tourist shops as toy souvenirs.They gnawed at the carrots we offered them with surprisingly sharp and huge teeth. As we strolled around, we noticed some shy small kangaroo-like creatures (which Kirsten later told us were called Penny Melons or something like that). These were not as exciting and tame and bold as the creatures we had encountered at Yelverton in Perth a year ago and did not dare come up close (except for one who tapped on Alan's boot) to get our carrot-feeds.

We retired early that night in the small but cosy Wombat Cottage.

1st June 2010 (Tuesday)

We met Kirsten at around 10am (check out time) and she took us to meet the family of koalas residing in the sanctuary. I hadn't seen koalas for a long , long time and not this close anyway! We knocked ourselves out petting them as they fed on the eucalyptus plants (which hit poor Ethan in the head a couple of times). The little one did not complain as he was too busy surveying the koalas and petting them on the head. After petting one, he promptly put his finger in the mouth to my horror - thankfully nothing untoward happened after that.

We left the sanctuary and drove down to Port Campbell. Lunch was a delicious and decadent affair at Room Six, manned by a sweet couple. Alan had a yummy yum yum steak burger with salad and wedges and I had a big bowl of mushroom and leek and pepper soup with turkish bread on the side. Our compliments to the chef!

After an approximately half and hour drive, we arrived near our next stopover (Macka's Farm along GOR). We had to go into Timbon (a small town) to pick up some groceries (for our meals for the next few days and nights) and I needed puree for Ethan as well. We purchased $102 worth of groceries and then checked into Macka's Farm.

What a warm welcome we were given by their two farm dogs - Andy and Jack (two Jack Russells). Macka, himself, came to greet us at the door and show us to our lodge. We were allocated Lodge One and that, in our opinion was the best and it had the platform outside to bbq and to view the farm. It was also the one nearest to the barn but thankfully the smell did not permeate. ;P

We were taken for a quick tour of the barn and it was an amazing feeling - like stepping into the movie set of Babe. We saw chickens and roosters running around, small calves, as many as 7 cats (all soft and velverty), two HUGE pigs and many piglets and many, many cows.

Macka came to start up the fire for us in our lodge and then we went to see the cows come home (literally) to be milked. Macka's wife and farm help, Trudi, gave us a jug of freshly squeezed milk (still warm) as a welcome gift. hahaha. I didn't drink it as I am breastfeeding but it smelt of our milk powder.

Alan was so sweet and he cooked dinner for us (delicious beef steaks) on the verenda. I did my part by cooking the spicy tomato soup (read : open can and dump contents into a big bowl, add water and milk and microwave) and feeding our starving son. Ethan was introduced to a yummy Yoplait Vanilla yogurt this evening too. Everything was perfect - the sheets were Laura Ashley and very comfy but the nextdoor neighbours were very inconsiderate and made lotsa noise at 11+pm, when we were trying to get our rest. :P

2 June 2010 (Wednesday)

We slept in this morning and got up only at around 10am. After the usual routine, we left the lodge at around 1230pm and headed to the Gorge Chocolate Factory (a smallish place owned by a young couple). They were both very friendly.. hahaha The fella even greeted us with a huge smear of chocolate on his cheek, close to his lips.

Again to Timbon we headed , but this time to check out a widely recommended eatery - Timbon Railway Shed Distillery. We were still very full from brekkie so we ordered a piece of Lemon Meringue Cheesecake and two scoops of icecream (vanilla as usual and a delicious Turkish Delight which tasted like Bandung).

We arrived at the Arch and the London Bridge at approximately 4+pm and then left for the lodge to cook sphagetti for dinner.

3rd June 2010 (Thursday)

Again, we woke up around 10am and then left for brunch at the Distillery. I was very impressed when the nice and sweet lady owner actually greeted Ethan by his name. Alan had Fish & Chips which did not hold a candle to Room Six's and I had a Chicken Maryland which had a weird Indian spices taste.

After lunch, we headed to the Loch Arg Gorge. I harnessed Ethan again whilst Alan took his shots. Good workout to burn those calories. We arrived at the 12 Apostles a while later but it was too bright to take any nice shots- according to the professional of a photographer, Alan. Thus, we headed back to the farm after a while to cook our pre-marinated pork chops and sausages and soup for dinner.

4th June 2010 (Friday)

Alan woke up early (6+am) to shiver in the cold (possibly 0 deg C) at the 12 Apostles to take sunrise shots there. We left Macka's farm at around 11am n then Alan drove us to the 12 Apostles again to get some photographs.

We travelled inland towards Colac and there was a sudden dip in temp to 10DegC and a weird fog outside the car. *shiver* We drove and drove and finally got back to Melbourne city and embraced a lap of luxury at the Crown Plaza. (isn't that a great way to end the holiday?) We valet parked our car for $60 for three days and two nights - multiple entries and exits. YaY.

Our big room overlooked the Yarra River and beautiful architecture of the Southbank but we did not have time to enjoy it yet. We wanted to SHOP at the DFO (South Wharf) since it was Friday and Late Night Shopping was available. hee hee. Good planning , eh?

We arrived at the DFO easily (it was a stone's throw away) and tried to shop. Pumpkin Patch was a hit and we picked up quite a few items for Ethan of course. He's outgrowing all his clothing we had bought for him in Perth July '09. Alan savoured his FCUK deals and picked up Iron Man tees and a pair of berms and fell in love with a jacket which we would pick up from another outlet the day after. There was of course nothing for me, again. hahaha. It's oK. I'm happy when my boys are happy!!! :D

We savoured a delicious hot chocolate and latte and then decided to head again to MeKong for dinner. The chargrill pork and phoa (again) did not disappoint, obviously. Their slogan read: "President Bill Clinton had two bowls. How many can you have?"

After the filling meal, during which Ethan was an angel and entertained himself with the mirrors next to us, we headed back to the Crown PLaza to watch the fireball shows from our hotel window in Room 409. :D

5th June 2010 (Saturday)

The breakfast spread in the hotel was much better than the ones we had been offered in Causeway 353 and Alan and I had freshly squeezed juices, eggs, sausages etc etc. After sinning at the table, we headed to the Crown Casino (not to sin at another table but) to pick up Alan's FCUK jacket. I finally found myself a top for $80 and our total FCUK bill combined with the previous day's purchases chalked up to around $400 - enough to claim VAT 10%!

Another trip was made to Queen Victoria Market and it was surprisingly quiet and not crowded at all. Perhaps it was because of the gloomy weather and the slight drizzle. We bought many t-shirts for little Ethan and ourselves and soaps and creams and nuggets and nuts and raisins. Then, it was closing time again at 2pm at the fruits and vegetables section and we picked up another bunch of grapes for ourselves to feast on.

It was 3pm when we sat down to lunch at Nando's again. Sad to say, it started to POUR when we had just finished our lunch and Alan braved the rain to get to the car park whilst Ethan and I waited in the restaurant. We headed back to the hotel reluctantly as it was difficult to walk on the streets whilst it was storming and with Baby Ethan.

We realised only in the hotel that my friend Hidayati had messaged us a couple of hours again. Yati is my secondary three and four classmate and we had been rather close. However, due to the lack of mobile phones then, we had lost touch 17 years ago! Recently, we 'reunited' through Facebook and arranged to meet in Melbourne for a rendezvous and reunion. ahahhaha.

Happily, our two families (she was travelling with hubby and two young 'uns on 3 and 5 years of age) met at the bustling Crown Casino and we walked to Southgate which was much quieter and settled for a foodcourt dinner. I was still very full from the Nando's and had my Boost juice as dinner whilst my hungry husband wolfed down half a wrap and half a slice of glorious cheesecake.

6 June 2010 (Sunday)

All of us woke up at around 830am and had breakfast at the hotel's restaurant again. Alan was adamant about making strawberry juice and clogged up the juicer. hahhaa. It was delicious, by the way!

We parked at QV and walked around the streets aimlessly trying very hard to shop. There was nothing much to offer in the boutiques though. In the end, we walked into David Jones and picked up two jackets for Ethan (for his planned trip to Taiwan in Dec haha).

Lunch was delicious and at Yoyogi along Swanston, a stone's throw away from MeKong. I chose the easy to eat beef don and Alan had a bowl of ramen. Both portions were HUGE! We also shared a side dish of sotong.

It started to drizzle a tad and after Alan visited a few camera shops in the vicinity, we made a beeline for QV and popped into Big W (Elaine's recommedation) and was wowed by the baby clothes. Of course, I did not waste any time in selecting quite a few rompers and shirts and pants for Ah Boy! :)))))

We had extended our stay in the Crown Plaza for the day and so we headed back at around 430pm to shower and feed ET before checking out at 6pm. A mistake we made however was to purchase the latest timing plane tickets for the day (0005hrs on 7/7) to maximise our stay. We were bored to bits after checking out as all the shops had closed for the day.

We took a drive around St. Kilda's and saw the Luna Park in the dusk. Then, I suggested heading to Chinatown, for the lacking of something better to do. We parked and walked there and bought (wrongly) a small bag of green tea nuggets for Zesa. ;p Then, we decided to do dinner at Crown Bakery along Swanston.

Alan had a delicious Lamb Shank and I could only stomach a fruit tart as my lunch had not been entirely digested. Then, we topped up petrol at a station in town and commenced our journey to the airport.

Along the way, our trusty garmin GPS screwed up and constantly 'recalculated' the route. Alan was cursing and swearing whilst I silently prayed in the backseat. Thankfully, after a while, it finally decided to show us the way to MEL.

Upon reaching MEL, we dumped the car at Thrifty and shivered in the rain (it was FINALLY cold enough to make us shiver) before checking in our baggage. Alan was impressed by how neatly and thoroughly wrapped our car seat was for A$10 and I missed an 'interesting show' whilst in the loo - a lady ( woman more like it) had missed her flight and was kicking up a big fuss in the airport, alternating between fucking e'one and kneeling down at the reception to beg to be allowed on the plane. ahahha. Ethan also tried to entertain a surly Chinese lady next to him, bearing the hopes of being offered a slice of the apple she was munching (to no avail, of course).

We got on the plane and horrors of horrors the bassinet seats were DIRECTLY next to each other. Poor Alan slept in between Ethan and a very irritating 9 month-old Indian baby who spent the 7 hours (a) kicking Alan, (b) blowing saliva at Alan or (c) kicking AND blowing saliva at Alan. He also fussed throughout the whole journey incessantly and our poor Ethan, who was all knocked out from the 12 day trip and who was sleeping soundly in my arms for most part of the flight, woke up a couple of times because of the bugger to sigh and then close his eyes and go back to slumber. Poor thing!

This was (I think) my 4th trip to Melbourne and 3rd to the GOR but I thoroughly enjoyed myself and so did Alan. This trip did Ethan a whole lot of good and our lil' one has come out of his shell and is a much friendlier baby than previously :) Hurray!

Learning Points:

1) GPS can screw up, so do get road maps ready - just in case!

2) Australians are SO MUCH friendlier than Asians and Ethan enjoyed interaction with them probably because of their bright and sincere smiles and also their high-pitched singsong voices when talking to him.

3) There are so many more choices of baby purees and yoghurts etc in Australia than in Spore / KL.

4) Go to Queen Victoria market when it's closing time to pick up super good bargains of fresh produce. E.g. (and I still can't get over it) one BIG CARTON of avocados (the size of my palm each) for A$2 at 2pm. The hawkers will slash their prices and compete to finish selling their wares.

5) Fresh milk from the cow's udders smells strong and of our tinned full cream milk powder.

6) Fresh farm eggs have such BIG yolks and are of a bigger size than the normal ones you purchase in the cartons.

7) Cows do come home, after all!

8) Don't have to overbring diapers - I brought a total of 57 and used miraculously 56! *clap clap* Talk about the powers of estimation.

9) Invest in good seats for the penguin parade. The A$80 we paid in total was worth it when we saw Ethan staring face-to-face at the little feathered creatures who came home at dusk.

10) Family trips like this are exceptionally good for bonding - especially betw Father and Son! :) Alan is much more affectionate and patient towards ET now and the latter is also more accomodating towards him. hahahaha. YaY

Now, to look forward towards Taiwan December 2010! *Beams*

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Bye Bye KL, Hello Melbourne (again)

Hello everyone,

An hour after this time tomorrow, Alan, Ethan and I will be in the cab on our way to KLIA. We are bringing Ethan to chilly, wintery Melbourne! This is our first trip away with him (excluding Singapore and Cameron Highlands etc) and we are very excited but also a little worried (petrified, more like it). Just hope everything goes according to plan and he will behave himself and be an angel. :)

We are leaving KLIA for Spore (transit 1.5hrs) and then taking SQ direct from Spore to Melbourne, arriving in MEL at 620am. We will then collect the car and try to make our way successfully to Phillip Island 2.5hr's drive away from Melbourne airport. The adventure will begin then!! OOOOoOooo How exciting.

ANyway, Ethan turned 7months old today. How amazingly fast. and tomorrow, Alan and I will celebrate our 3rd wedding anniversary on board the plane. haahahha. How lovely! *claps* OK just a short update - have to go n stuff MORE things into the suitcases ---> It's certainly NOT easy packing for a 10 day trip which comprises a 7month old kiddo. :(

I think this will be my 4th time placing foot on Melbourne soil. ahahahaha.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ethan has a COUGH :(

Yesterday, after Alan knocked off, he came home straight and brought Ethan and I to MVMM. Ethan was suffering from an intermittent cough and we wanted it treated so that he can enjoy the chilly wintery Australian air soon.

We went to Medicare on the 2nd floor of MVMM and although the clinic was empty, we had to wait for quite long for ET to be seen - such efficiency. The doctor, to my disappointment, wasn't the Chinese young man we had seen when I wanted confirmation for my pregnancy. He was a blur looking Indian doctor with VERY hairy arms.

Anyway, he took ET's temp (3 times) and then listened to his chest and also got him to open his (screaming) mouth. Then prescribed some medication for the inflammation. Then, again we had to wait for a long time to collect our meds. :P

Next stop - ZA ALtera. Alan needed to collect his jeans that had been sent for alteration. We stopped by the bank to change money as well and chatted with the over-friendly lady selling chinese cookies at the pushcart and next door to check about dowloading the Australian map onto the GPS.

Then, I popped into Cold Storage and picked up two avocados for Ethan and we quickly left for home so that I could feed him his dinner.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Sunny Sunday!

We slept in- with permission from Master Ethan, of course and got outta bed only at around 10am. :) YaY.

I tricked Ethan into finishing his sweet potato today with a small cube of laughing cow cheese - that did the trick! :D *Happy Mama* He also polished down his ounce of sweet corn puree with a knob of butter. The Father was impressed! :)

We wanted to sneak outta the house after that but in the midst of our dilly dally, Ethan had his 20minute power nap and then woke up just as we were about to leave. Hahahah. That prompted us to bring him out.

Making our way to Bangsar Shopping Centre, we spotted the Pets Lovers Centre in an obscure area in the car park! What a weird location! Anyway, we are thankful that we don't have to travel that far to buy dog food etc anymore ;)

We roamed aimlessly around with nothing in mind and also trying to decide where to eat. Exploring the new wing, we discovered a couple of stores had opened - Mothercare, Times the Bookstore and also a huge Guardian. Cool. Still purchase-less, we opted for Chilis for lunch.

"Disappointing" would be a good word to describe our meal - I had grilled chicken sandwich which came in a burger form. I was misled by the pic in the menu and had thought it was to be served with toasted bread like a club sandwich. And Alan, went against my wishes, and had his red meat as usual - mushroom swiss. I think the ones in BK taste MUCH better.:P The drink was shared - a sour milkshake of a variety of juices.

We headed into Cold Storage next - the real reason for coming to BSC. I picked up Ethan's RUSK teething biscuits (which will be brought to Australia) and also a small bottle of puree to feed Ethan at KLIA before we board our flight to Singapore (to transit to Melbourne :P)

After that, we headed home for Ethan to rest (read: roll all over the bed and pretend to sleep).

In the evening, after En returned from the pasar malum, she took over Ethan and I went out for dinner with Alan to have his favourite (read: can eat e'single day) fish head beehoon soup. We picked up 5 blurays to stock up as well and went into Sri Kota for some chicken.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

A Special Saturday Morning

This morning, we did something different. Ethan roused us early again and we took a lovely walk in the neighbourhood again. I carried him on the harness, instead of the stroller and Alan took charge of JCo. :) We made our rounds and woke up the neighbourhood with the barking dogs and then headed home so that Ening could bathe Ethan.

Alan and I then took off for an early breakfast at OUG - he wanted me very much to try this bachor noodles soups that his colleagues had brought him to savour near his office. We ordered kuayteow soup and had a big bowl each, washing it down with a tea and coffee respectively. Not bad... 7/10! Ingredients were generous - cabbage, minced pork, lean pork slices, prawns, sotong and some minute pieces of pig stomach. The soup did not leave us thirsty as well. :)

It started to pour just before we left the coffeeshop and we braved the rain and skipped to our car, not beforing stopping along the way at a wet market. We picked up a carton of eggs and roamed deeper into the market to see cages of live chickens! I haven't seen this scene in a wet market since I was a little girl!! The unfriendly lady manning the chicken coop chided us for taking photographs whilst she captured a squawking bird, ready to be slaughtered for RM11/kg. :P I was traumatised and looked away quickly, saying a silent prayer for the feathered one. ;p I

We stopped by a big fruit stall as I wanted to pick up fresh fruit for Ethan's puree. He has a slight cough and I did not want to aggravate it by feeding him the mango I had already pureed for him. I picked 5 red apples initially intending for ET. We also bought two persimmons and some grapes. Then, I caught sight of some huge pears and selected two for Ethan's snacks in the evening.

We then drove home in the drizzle and I pureed the sweet pears for Ethan and enjoyed watching him wolf them down . :D

Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday Night at Bangsar

After tuition this evening, Alan came home and we brought Ethan out. We are trying to bring him out of the house more often to socialise and also to 'see the world', just in case he thinks that the world is made up of only two bedrooms and one living room.

We had nothing to buy, for once. But I wanted to play blowing bubbles with Ethan in our garden so we proeeded to Toys R' Us at Bangsar Shopping Village. I found the bubbles and they cost an amazing RM7.95 for each bottle. I refused to buy them! Gonna make my own, albeit outta soapy water. I havent decided what item can be used to blow the bubbles from - Ening said that in her kampung, they use papaya leaves~ Interesting eh?

Alan looked like a tourist with his GF1 hanging from his neck and he snapped pictures of Ethan like a paparazi. heehe. The Husband is pleased with his new toy and is practising for our trip to Australia. hahahaha.

ANW, we left Toys R' Us and popped into the dvd shop Rockcorner or something like that. There was nothing to add to our collection. We walked around aimlessly, trying to decide where to have dinner. For Goodness Sake (the Jap liquor) beckoned and we decided to give it a shot. Both of us had cold noodles and shared a plate of deep fried oysters and a plate of beef-wrapped asparagus. Nice. The service was so good that they got their chef to slice us wedges of fresh carrots when we rejected their appetiser dish of cabbage and dip. The damage was around RM60 only and Alan tipped them gratefully. :) Ethan was also v cooperative and lulled himself into a slumber just before we started on our meal and roused just after we dabbed our mouths with our paper napkins after polishing off every morsel of food.

Video Ezy allowed us to purchase our evening entertainment - a Chinese movie (Fire of Conscience) which boosts many well-known actors such as Leon Lai and Richie Ren.
Our next stop was The Village Grocer. Ethan was enthralled by the wide array of colourful
vegetables and fruits. I wonder when he can sit in the trolley and be pushed around? hahaha

I wanted to check out their yogurt selection as it will almost be time for Ethan to be introduced to this yummy delight. All their frozen yogurts are low fat or no fat but they have the non-frozen pasturized type which they displayed above the formula milk for babies. Maybe that is suitable? I need to do more research :D

We bought a box of Laughing Cow cube cheese though. I am going to try and 'trick' Ethan into finishing his sweet potato puree with that. haahha. Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Have a Little Faith

In line with my endeavour to read more and enrich myself, I have been reading Mitch Albom, my favourite author's most current creation, "Have A Little Faith". So far so good. Have gotten till page 75 (out of 249 :P) I wish sometimes that I could find the time and opportunity to read more. We've subscribed to Reader's Digest again but I again can't seem to find windows of opportunities to tuck my legs under my ass, curl up and just enjoy. Ok ok... I better spend less time on facebook hor? hahahaha

Anyway, Ethan has been introduced to quite a variety of foods - *proud mama beams at this juncture*. There are three vegetables - carrots and sweet potato and corn. And 5 kinds of fruits - banana, papaya, avocado, peach, apple. In another day or two, he will try his daddy's favourite fruit MANGO! It's all pureed and waiting for him in frozen freshness. :) He tried sweet corn with a knob of butter today and polished everything off the plates quite promptly. I am thankful. :P

We will be leaving for Melbourne in a week's time. I've got to get off my ass and start packing!!! My goodness. There will be tonnes to bring this time and since it's chilly winter there, I must be well-prepared to brace Ethan for winter! :) Our itinerary has been planned and it's pretty much flexible and easy-going. Nothing to strenuous for Papa and Mama Bear since it's our first trip with the little one and we are not sure how good a traveller he'll be.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Gastronomical Sins

Saturday 15 May 2010

A lovely start to the day was a trip down memory lane. Alan and I had once volunteered our Tuesday evenings at a home in Desa Petaling called Ti-ratana. I used to conduct English tuition classes for a group of teenagers every week with Mr Iron Man Tan as my assistant and IT helpdesk operator. hahaha. Sad to say, we no longer continue this because of personal reasons (read: Ethan Tan)

Anyway, I was forwarded an email that the home needed confinement foods (they also house unwed mothers, infants, elderly- even stray dogs!) and I wanted to hand them my leftover rice wine, black vinegar etc etc. I also packed tonnes of clothes Ethan has outgrown as giveaways too.

We passed the stuff to Raj, the i/c there and then quickly headed to The Gardens to pick up a late lunch at 1pm. Again, Alan wanted to eat Oh Sushi and I reluctantly agreed for the lack of a better option. We overordered this time with butter corn ramen (it SUCKED) for me, and garlic rice and a plate of pork for Alan. We also shared a pan fried fish and salmon nabe. *burp*

Immediately after that, we were slated to go for facial (for me) and a massage for Alan at Cres. Alan had to wait for me (and he spent his time wisely at the MVMM photography fair) as I had a longer treatment time than he did.

I then popped into Isetan, which was on SALE and bought Ethan three pairs of thick socks for Australia. Alan met me at Cold Storage and we went to the fruit shop nearby to pick up 3 (for RM20!!!) small peaches and 8 big and juicy mangoes (for RM40). Guess what Ethan will be having for snack next week??? heeeheee

Sunday 16 May 2010

After Ethan was cooperative and had his breakfast, we got him ready and then left with Jay Jay and Coco for Dogroomz. The two furry ones needed their full grooming - Jay Jay can hardly see with his fringe covering his big round eyes! Hahahaha.

Once we had unloaded the two dogs, Alan sped us to Noble House at Imbii for my "Mothers' Day lunch". hahaha. He had wanted to buy me this meal last week but the restaurant had been fully booked. We had a voucher for one person to dine free for this buffet. It cost RM 45 (cheap untilll) per pax and came with a yummy bowl of shark fins soup.

We opted for the double boiled shark fins soup- the fins were stuffed into a chicken wing and had to pay extra. But it was certainly worth it. The rest of the buffet spread included big succulent prawns, soups, dim sum, appetisers, scallops with cheese, escargot with cheese etc. They even had lobsters in the buffet but apparently they were all served up when we had got there at around 1245pm. The moral of the story? Book your table for 1130am, when the buffet has just begun!
Anyway, we didn't stuff ourselves silly because Ethan was a tad cranky. Just a tad, which was handleable. ;P Sally, the waitress tried to entertain him but at the end of the meal, he was already in tears. I fed him in the car whilst we made our way to Pavilion Shopping Mall.

Popping into Tangs straightaway, we collected our free RM 50 voucher (membership really has it privileges in this country). The voucher expired today and Alan was 'forced' to spend. He did not disappoint and selected (albeit too excitedly) two Iron Man FCUK T-shirts (which cost altogether RM200) - my husband can REALLY SHOP! The salesgirls took turns to entertain Ethan as well but he cried and cried. haahaha.

Next stop, PARKSON. I wanted to buy shoes for Ethan for OZ - to keep his feet warm. I selected a pair and mistakenly bought a pair of jeans for Ethan which I thought was on 50% off. It was , but the price (Rm39.90) was already discounted. Oh well....

We went down, down, down to the basement:

On to Watsons - I needed some personal stuff. Popped into Caring Pharmacy for some pills too.
Coffee Break was at Old Town White Coffee. I had a ice blended mocha coffee and Alan had a hazelnut iced coffee. Both were delicious and pick-me-ups.

Next stop- Chinese Medical Hall to replenish our dried scallops stock and we bought a big box of green raisins to serve as munchies in front of our goggle box.

Then, it was home sweet home to rest and feed Ethan his avocado. After I bathed him, again we set off to Dogroomz to fetch the two naughty boys back home.

Monday 17 May 2010.
IP MAN II beckoned in the evening. We polished off two hotdogs and a small popcorn during the show. hahaa. Decadence with a Capital D!
The show was still very good and exciting and touching - even though it cannot hold a candle to IP MAN I. Quite impactful, I must say. I had seriously wanted to slap the angmoh sitting next to me when Twister was on the big screen. haahah
After visiting Altera to send Alan's jeans for alteration, we grabbed Subway home for a late dinner.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Today is a special, special day! It's MOTHERS' DAY!! Happy Mothers' Day Mother!!!!! Hope you had a wonderful day out with the family! :D It is also my VERY FIRST MOTHERS' DAY as an official MOTHER! :P

Alan and I were so tired out this morning (around 1030am). Ethan was put to bed early last night and he woke up at around midnight to do his business and sing loudly. hahahaha. Yes , he sings at the top of his voice and chooses unearthly hours too! Anyway, after Alan changed his diaper, I fed him and then he pooed AGAIN. By the time his eyelids drooped, it was almost 230am. OMG. I was absolutely zonked out. Unfortunately, he roused again a few hours later, to have his milk again. THEN, at 730am, he woke up and started singing (me a Happy Mothers' Day song) and after another feed, all of us collasped until 1030am.

Unfortunately, Ethan had no appetite for his sweet potato puree and millet cereal this morning and hardly touched any. I was so exhausted that I was keen to call off the outing we had planned.

After a cuppa tea however, I was revitalised and we decided to leave the little one at home and make our way to The Curve/ Ikano Power Centre and IKEA. I know it's ironic to leave ET at home to celebrate Mothers' Day, but it was a good idea because Alan and I really enjoyed ourselves. hahahaha

Lunch was a decadent affair at a Taiwanese restaurant at The Curve. I hadn't had any breakfast and so I was famished. It was 3+pm when we sat down for the meal. I ordered the usual meesuar and Alan had a pork chop rice. We shared a deep fried chicken roll, stir-fried chilli lala, mini BUddha Jump over the Wall and a yam bubble tea. Ohhhhh.. Delicious! And definitely easy on the pocket! Good Choice!

We roamed back to IKEA after our waistline-busting meal to pick up a couple of items in the crowded IKEA. We needed a RM45 high chair for Ethan for him to join us for meals at home, a big plastic box container to store his food and drink cutlery etc when not in use and etc. We were very much on task and got the two items, plus an extra cute cushion for Ethan for his high chair in a jiffy.

After placing the items in the car, we made a beeline for the Pet Safari at Ikano Power Centre. We needed dog food and Jay Jay's Eye Envy lotion had run out. I chose bags and bags of doggie treats for the furry sons as well. The damage, after discount, was a hefty RM300+!!!

It was nearly 530pm when we arrived home, exhausted but very, very fulfilled. hahaha.

p/s: The husband is a sweetie and 'surprised' me with a pair of Destinee (Lee Hwa) ear-rings for Mothers' Day! Xie Xie Laogong! I Love You!!! :D

8 May 2010 (Saturday)

This morning, at around 1030am, the Tan family popped by again to kindly pass us big bags of books for Ethan. Now, if you must know, the Tans have produced a doctor and a dentist and the books are a promising start for Ethan to be groomed as Dr Tan Ee Hom, Ethan. ahhahaa. They are about the Human Anatomy and etc. There are a couple of books about animals as well. :) These friends of ours are indeed very, very sweet and kind. How lovely to have such people as pals!!! :D They also invited us to join them trekking (they don't know us v well hor?) at Gasing Hill. But we politely declined.hahahahaha.

After I fed Ethan (sweet potato puree and carrot puree - OMG so ORANGE) today, he bathed and had a nap before we left for MVMM. Alan wanted to eat Oh Sushi again so there we were. it was a good meal which was healthy and not too filling. :) Ethan self-entertains in Mommy's arms. First time in a high chair... Ethan telling Mommy which sushi he wants... Portable entertainment rox!

Off we sprinted, after our late lunch, to the Moms and Babies Expo at the top floor of MVMM. I was itching to see what the fair had to offer and hoped to pick up some stuff for Ethan. However, it was disappointing and we left , after a few minutes, just picking up some old copies of Parenthood- a magazine in KL about babies / toddlers. They were at 3 for RM10. Sad to say, our only other purchase was a packet of wet wipes. ;p

We were already very exhausted after that saga but decided to shop around for Ethan's cold wear for our Melb trip. Finally, we spotted a suitable light wind-breaker (the other shops did not carry his size) at Adam's Kids, which was miraculously going for 70% off~!! YaY!! Of course we bought it!!

After that, we popped into a pharmacy and bought Vaseline for all our potential chapped lips (in lieu of Melb's wintery chill) and then left for home, satisfied. :D Clowning around after returning home from MVMM.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Sweet Potato & Apple Puree

Today I sent Ening to the market/ supermarket early and she came back with some treats for Ethan. :) She bought HUGE ( i have seen any others that rival them in size) sweet potatoes in the market and a bag of apples from USA from TMC.

I got to work in the kitchen whilst Ethan took his nap. I peeled two and a quarter of the 5 sweet potatoes (the other 3/4s I cooked for lunch). Then I chopped them into smaller pieces. They totalled around 400g in weight. Off to the steamer they went. I did the same with around 4 apples. They are not of a good quality though. What do you expect of the brand "First Choice" ironically. Told En not to buy those anymore. But they actually made quite good puree.. ahahaha

After the sweet potatoes and apples were steamed till tender, they were pureed into a pulp. I put around 45ml into each baby cube (normally I will fill it with 30ml but there was just so much). There was some apply puree remaining and insufficient cubes so I fed that with a cube of carrot puree to Ethan for lunch. He finished every bit! :D
This is what the top half of my freezer looks like. haahhaha.