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Showing posts from 2005

What we've been up to this week

This is an informative post to tell you what we've been up to and what we did over the Christmas hols.

23rd Dec: MH finished work early. Basically, almost everyone in the office went home right after a long leisure lunch which ended at 2.00PM. So he was home by 3.00PM. We decided to go down to Darling Harbour in the city for a walk and to enjoy the Christmas decorations and carol singing. It was lovely. The sound of the Christmas carols sounded so magical together with the beautiful scenery and ambience. We also walked around a shopping centre to hunt for the missing piece of MH's Transformers boxed set collection. We saw a myriad of last minute shoppers racing around everywhere.
{I wonder why despite how early the Christmas sales season begins, there will ALWAYS be last minute shopping to do, and there will always be the last minute mad Christmas rush. Puzzling isn't it?}
After dinner, we went out for supper with some of MH's ex-classmates to meet up with one ex-classmat…

Merry Christmas to all!

I realise that this is our first Christmas Eve as an independent family unit. So it was up to me to roll up my sleeves and cook up something worthy (or at least decent enough) for dinner.

The spread looks simple, but I can assure you that it tasted fantastic. MH will back me up on this... sometimes simplicity is really the key. And you can't really go wrong with the classics. And I was bold enough to throw in my own twists.

The basic: roast chicken, anointed with a touch of olive oil and butter. The twist: sweet stuffing of apricots seared in honey.

The basic: mash potatoes. The twist: lots of cheese and a touch of sour cream.

The basic: tomato and cucumber salad tossed in olive oil and vinegar. The twist: actually there's no twist, salads taste best when they are simple and uncomplicated.

Although I miss the usual Christmas feast with the rest of the family back in KK... but we made our own as memorable as possible anyway.

Merry Christmas to all!

Christmas pressie for himself

Last night we went Christmas shopping. Westfield shopping centre in Burwood was packed with shoppers with late night shopping extended to midnight. So exciting! We walked around Myer and looked at all the pretty and shiny new things. I was itching to buy a nice new solid good-sized cooking pot (Oh man, I really am turning into a Stepford wife!). In the end I settled for a little stopper so I can keep olive oil in old wine bottles and drizzle them over salads like a professional. Cost $2.60 after 25% discount.

My beloved hubby on the other hand was more extravagant. He spotted the DVD boxed set of the transformers animated series and went absolutely ga-ga over them. He spent a loooong time poring over the sets, contemplating the "to buy, or not to buy" question. Then we went all over the entire Westfield shopping centre to see if there were better deals in other shops. There were none. So it was back to Myer once again. He couldn't decide which one to buy, so he bought bot…

Our very own Christmas Tree

To keep up with dad's recent posting of the Christmas tree they put up back home in KK, I thought I'd show our own Christmas tree here in our little home in Sydney.

We picked up the tree for a bargain at $5 at a garage sale. The silver tinsel and decorations cost $9 from Ikea. MH insisted on having proper Christmas lights for around $10 also from Ikea. The only drawback is that the lights do not twinkle, but that's alright.

We've spent a few quiet evenings sitting quietly on our couch looking at our pretty Christmas tree. It's very therapeutic.

On another topic, despite the Christmas season,the current issues in Australia is minority groups protesting Christmas celebrations. And they are not even Muslims or Jews. Just ordinary "free-thinkers" who strongly believe that Christmas carols and Christmas greetings should strictly be limited to churches or religious settings. They were deeply offended that a local school sent their family a Christmas card to wish t…

My new toy

Our first Christmas present in Sydney. MH's old classmate gave it to us during the dinner party we held at our place. This is exactly what I've been itching to buy for the past few months.

I first saw this at MH's friend's house where we stayed when we first arrived. I was so amazed at this gadget... they way it steamed things so perfectly in such a short time. The friend was also very enthusiastic about showing me all the features and raved about how easy it was to use and maintain. I was determined to get one for myself too.

So we went to Myers to look at it. The price was fairly reasonable, but MH suggested we wait for a sale and get it at a discount. We didn't need it urgently anyway. So I agreed.

Then lo and behold, the same friendwent out to get one for us because she saw how much I liked it. I'm so amazed how nice people can be. I was like a little girl all over again, opening up the box and admiring how beautiful it looked.

It's now sitting prettily on …

Little pears

Aren't these cute? This batch is part of my Christmas baking projects. I made this from a basic shortbread recipe. I could just look at them all day... cute lil' buggers...

Survival skills

I am presently sitting in front of the TV with MH's laptop on my lap. Life is very comfortable here. But I must take care never to forget that I am a SABAHAN!!! Growing up in Sabah is GREAT... I had a fun, memorable and happy childhood... but life was not always a bed of roses, and I've had my share of gruelling and life-toughening experiences.

What are the two basic modern amenities every household should have? Water and Electricity. Agree? Good. So imagine if these were taken away from you. Sometimes only for a couple of hours. How about a couple of days... even longer at times. This situation equals the basic OBS experience. Heck, I heard even OBS always provide these anyway...

Here is my survival guide for such situations:

Water Cuts
It never fails to happen in Sabah once every few months... sometimes every few weeks even. Dad said it happenes because one of the major water pipes had burst (again). And it seems happens more often during the rainy season. Ironic, eh? I could ne…


I went for a job interview yesterday (Thursday). The company was actually one of the competitors of my previous company. It didn't turn out as exciting as I'd thought it would be (hey, there's a possbility that thewere calling me to spy on my previous company, right?).

When I got the call requesting me to come in for an interview, the secretary told me the name of my interviewer, and I realised that it was an ex-colleague from my previous company who was in Australia on a business trip. How queer is that? As she walked up to me at the reception, she was still the same sweet, smiley little thing as always.

After the interview, I felt torn.

It might be a good opportunity to try working for another company to widen my exposure. But I had a naggy little feeling of doubt that this was really the job for me. Somehow, I still enjoy the type of exposure I might get working for my previous company. But is it really worth banking everything on just that?

What to do, oh what to do?

Drat ulcers!

I made scones today. Soft, warm and buttery little mounds.

See how yummy they look!

You can find the recipe here: Scones

Unfortunately, my ulcer prevented me from enjoying the full bliss of savouring the scones.

It's official

I am now a quarter of a century old.

I remember one time when I first started work at my company, a colleague remarked how young I was to start working... and said the same thing again when I announced that I was getting married.

I don't like it when people pass comments like that, what kind of response are they hoping they get from me? I only have one answer for a question like that: Yes, I suppose I am.

She would then say condescendingly, you are young now but once you hit 25 and over, you'll start to feel it.

So here I am now at 25.

What is it I am suppose to feel again?


We had lunch with our couple friends today after church. They are very nice people... pleasant, helpful, generous... But somehow, something isn't clicking firmly in place yet. There are still moments in our conversation filled with short awkward silences... times when we are not quite sure what to talk about next... instead of a smooth-flowing conversation, I rack my head trying to think of something interesting to talk about... settling down in Australia, church activities, family back in Malaysia, places to go for holiday... but this shouldn't be the way, should it?

I really hope we find something that clicks us together eventually soon. They are very nice people and we do value having them as friends in our new country. But sometimes I fear that they might soon become bored with our company... heck, sometimes I'm tempted to feel bored too... but I try not to let myself dwell on thoughts like that.

Cherries Galore!

What to do with all these cherries???

Make Cherry Clafoutis!!! It's very easy...

Click here: Cherry Clafoutis by Bill Granger

Yummy Supper

Raspberry and cream cheese triangle pastries, mmmm...
Lucky for MH and lil' bro that I had a whim to bake something up last night for supper!

Weekend with friends

We had a lovely time yesterday at IKEA with D&G whom we met at our church connect group. They just bought a car and were planning to drive down to IKEA to buy some furnishings for their house and invited us to go with them. We didn't intend to buy anything at all but ended up spending $70 (phew!). I told MH that we mustn't buy on impulse, but these were all little things we needed to get sooner or later... a rubbish bin, dish rack, placemats. We also bought some Christmas decorations for our Christmas tree (yes, we have a tree... we bought for $5 at a garage sale). MH insisted that it was very important for a Christmas tree to have lights, so we bought those as well. We spent the whole day shopping together and only reached home at 5.00pm.

Today, they picked us up to go to church and we had brunch together afterwards. We wanted to find a nice dim sum place to eat but we were all not familiar with the area, so we ended up eating MacDonalds (much to the delight of the two men…

What's on the menu for lunch?

Grilled tomato & cheese sandwiches for lunch today.

Yummy snack...

Remnants of my yummy banana & strawberry smoothie... we gulped it down as a healthy post-dinner-snack... very filling! *burp*

Our house looks more like a home now

We brought in the final load of furniture on Sunday... 1 dining table, four dining chairs, 1 coffee table, 1 sideboard, plus a swivel chair... a great deal at only $180 for the entire lot. We bought it second hand from this foreign uni student who was going back to Canada after completing her studies. With the couch costing only $10, we actually furnished our entire living / dining area for less than $200!!! MH is so amazed and blown away that I managed to accomplish all this. I spent Monday afternoon arranging the furniture and setting everything up. The place looks quite nice now.
(Check out the link in the blog title)

Leisurely Saturday

It's such a treat to have a nice leisurely Saturday (big difference from Saturdays in Singapore which were packed with activities or at our cafe).

Aaahhh... the luxury of sleeping in till 10.00am...

This morning, I convinced MH to sit with me and watch Dances with Wolves... one of my favourite epic films. He was wary of getting sucked into some boring drama at first, but in the end he had no regrets.

After the movie, we went to do our usual weekly grocery shopping. We racked up a little more than our usual bill because we decided to buy some extra pillows for guests and 4 bottles of wine which were on special... only between $6.00 to $7.00 per bottle.

After putting the groceries back home, we decided to walk down to the park near our home and explore our neighbourhood further. Most of the shops were already closed, but at least we could get an idea of what other shops there were in our vicinity.

Tonight, we had leftover spaghetti bolonaise for dinner... I put in whole peppercorns like …

The world keeps getting smaller...

We attended our FIRST CONNECT GROUP MEETING on Wednesday night. It's not too far away from our house - only 3 stops away by train (less than 10 minutes journey). We were the first to arrive at the connect group leader's house even though it was already 7.25pm (the meeting was supposed to begin at 7.30pm).

So we chatted with the connect group leader. She's a young working adult, 29 years old, Australian-born Chinese. Her parents were first generation migrants from Mainland China. But she's lived in Australia all her life and is already very "aussie-fied".

Finally at 7.45pm, the doorbell rang and a young married couple walked in the door. The moment our eyes met, there was a flash of recognition between MH and the other man. Ahah! They new each other from Taylor's College in KL! They immediately talked about a common friend they had in college. We can't seem to avoid bumping into people we know everywhere we go.

The connect group is run in a fairly unstruc…

Noodles by the hubby!

Tonight's dinner was courtesy of MH, the hubby... fried noodles. Yummy... maybe could do with a little less salt, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Sometimes it's nice to reverse roles and be the pig lounging around in front of the TV and sipping juice while waiting for dinner to be ready... nice...

Australian tai-tai

My life has been revolving around work - gathering info and data on banking messaging systems... and housework - washing, cooking, cleaning and shopping (for groceries, not clothes!). I'm enjoying myself so far. Just need to be careful that I don't fall into the trap of becoming slack!

We're had a lovely time exploring our suburb. There are plenty of quaint little shops to look into. And it's pleasant to walk down Burwood Road and see people in the cafes and shops as we pass by. Plus, I am convinced that some of the best Chinese food is actually tucked away in our little subsurb... right under our very noses... mmm... I am tempted to rate one place as having the best Chinese BBQ pork ribs in the world! But I won't pass the final verdict just yet... still some more exploring to do...

Well, Paul is now enjoying himself in Sydney (in Burwood to be exact). Sleep, eat, watch TV, DVD & VCDs, play computer games, eat, sleep. It's nice having him around. I'll def…

Nasi Lemak

Mmmm... my leftover nasi lemak is heating up in the microwave now... I made it last night for dinner and deliberately made extra for everybody's lunch today. MH should be tucking it into his now at the office. Yum!

News update of our house-hunting... we finally found a lovely little unit on Belmore Street in Burwood. We'll be going down to the agent's office to sign the contract this Friday. I'll definitely take some photos of it to send over. After we sign the contract, there's still so much to do... we'll be renting a car to move all our luggage over and then there's loads of shopping to do as well... Yeah! So exciting!

It's about time

Finally... it's about time I sat down and type a new entry for my blog... even if it has to be a short one.

It's beautiful in Sydney now. Now that I am here... I can remember how this is really one of the prettiest cities in the world. MH and I were at Darling Harbour on Monday night to meet up with Ronald who flew in from Perth on a business trip... it's so pretty there... you get a nice sense of calm and feel like you can really exhale as you stroll down along the water down there.

I've also been exercising my culinary skills here. We're still staying at MH's friend's place. But we definitely cannot eat out every night. So I cooked as often as I can for all of us. Somehow it's so easy to be a James Oliver wanabe here... don't know if its the cheap and fresh ingredients... the spring air... or MH's friend's lovely kitchen... whatever it is, it's good...

We finally found a place to rent in Burwood. The rent is a bit higher than our initial …

Sad to be leaving my first job

What a whirlwind week it has been.

My official last day of work was on Friday. I was already starting to feel a little sad. It has definitely been an interesting and sometimes exciting chapter of my life working at this company. I also have really great colleagues. I've heard of cases of back-stabbing and weirdo people that keep bugging you (like at MH's company). But at my company, I had no such impression of my colleagues... although they can be weird too... in an endearing kind of way.

And guess what? My collagues planned a mini-surprise farewell party for me. All my colleagues were there, plus my manager and the directors as well. The secretary prepared some snacks for all of us and I gave a little good-bye speech. The real surprise was the gift they gave to me. All of them collaborated to make a PowerPoint presentation entitled "Serene at Synovate". There was also a 1 minute video clip of each colleague sharing a personal message on video for me. They compiled the…

Images of my childhood

Inspired by mom’s recent blog entry on Traditional Pastimes, images of my childhood flashed across my mind…

Eating hot pisang goreng after swimming at KGC
Exploring the abandoned construction site near our house (we called it “the mountain”)
Barbeques in our house backyard with dad as the head chef
Helping mom to ice cakes and decorating it with ‘smarties’
Bathing Snowball (almost) every Sunday afternoon
Walking down Gaya Street after church on Sundays
Cycling home from the playground at twilight with Snowball running ahead of us
Climbing down into the “longkangs” to catch tiny fishes
Making sandcastles at Tanjung Aru beach and poking a dead jellyfish on the shore
Chasing hermit crabs and trying to cover up the crab’s hole with sand (we were so cruel!)
Counting and jumping over waves in the sea at Tanjung Aru
Picnics at Kundasang and driving up the steep hill to Perkasa Hotel to see the view
Building our own fire at the fire place at the chalet in National Park
Snorkelling at Pulau Manukan… even th…


I am seeing stars!!!

Today we had a Mediacorp filming at our cafe for a local talk show series. They wanted to feature our cafe as a good place for family fun... food... and games...

So I had the honour of shaking hands with a local Singaporean celebrity who was hosting the show. I shall not reveal the name of the person here for confidential reasons (ask me in person if you want to know who I'm talking about).

Anyway, I had the opportunity to have a close up look at a real celebrity. And it was interesting to see the whole "lights, camera, action" sequence in progress. We had a group of kids come in to sit down and play games in front of the camera. Wah! These kids really can act! Except for one screaming brat who kept on misbehaving, messing up the cards and refusing to cooperate, all the other kids were well behaved and put up a good show of having fun with the games. We removed the brat in the end -- much to the disappointment of the mother who was probably keen to have…

Chicken Mackumbay Mystery

My brothers and I were obsessed with chickens when we were kids

We doubled up laughing over any "why did the chicken cross the road" jokes (even though those jokes are so lame)

And we were also into "Chicken Mackumbay"

What is “Chicken Mackumbay” and why did we find it so funny? Even now I burst out laughing as I try to tell MH about our “Chicken Mackumbay”… but he has no head or tail what I’m talking about.

We were so into chicken stuff then… we even made a song about chicken “A-May-Meh, A-May-Meh, A-May-Meh, and a Pok-Pok-Pok-Pok-Pok-Pok”

But the case of “Chicken Mackumbay” is still an unsolved mystery to me. Or maybe I’ve just forgotten this secret over the years.

Sam and Paul, pray, enlighten me (if you can) what exactly is this “Chicken Mackumbay” thing anyway? And how did it all get started in the first place?

The Evolution from wannabe "Baby Malaysian Idols" to the SSP Radio Show

My mom and dad are truly ingenious parents. Most parents will just be trigger happy and snap every single moment of their children’s daily activities on camera. My parents were just as trigger happy as other parents... but being such creative parents they ALSO recorded our voices on tape. The microphone must have been the most amazing invention in the world… at least to three excited children back then.

I really enjoy listening to myself and my brothers on tape belting out nursery rhyme tunes repeatedly… we must have sounded like broken records… all day long it was just “tinkle, tinkle, ‘ittle ‘tar, ‘ow I wonder what you are” or “baa baa black theep ‘ave you any wool”

Another thing we just LOVED to do was to tell fairy tales… Top on the list was Little Red Riding Hood, followed by The Three Little Pigs and Goldilocks. Picture how animated we were as we passionately squeaked Red’s exclamation “grandmother, what big teeth you have!” and in the gruffly voice of the wolf “all the better to …

Tribute to supermom

I was watching a movie on Sunday night called “Mom on Strike”. It’s about a working mother who feels overworked, unappreciated and burnt out. She’s a supermom to her kids but also works full time 30 hours a week from Monday to Friday. Everyday she makes breakfast for the whole family, makes lunch for her kids and sends them to school. After school she sends them to their various activities like sports practice, dance class etc. After dinner she helps her kids with their homework and gets ready for the same hectic routine the next day all over again.

It reached the point when this mom realised that she was doing practically everything for a family but not one appreciated her, much less helping her. They all just assumed that mom will take care of it and treat her like a servant and chauffeur. It was just “mom, please clean my sports jersey”, “mom, send me to hockey practice”, “mom, help me type out my assignment” and so on. So finally she decided to do something drastic… she went on str…

Morning routine with dad

As I was walking to the MRT station this morning to go to work, I saw a father walking his daughter to school. This is quite unusual because it is usually mothers that walk their kids to the school near our flat. It made me remember how my dad used to send me to school every morning at then pick me up afterwards during his lunch break. It may have developed into an ordinary routine. But even then, I treasured those moments spent with my dad.

I remember how we used to stop at the newspaper stall at Foh Sang on the way to school, I would run down and buy the Daily Express for dad. And after school, I would look out for his big purple 4WD to rumble up near the side gate where I waited for him. During my Pre-U days, I wondered if dad would become impatient as we inched through the traffic jam in front of the school. But he always had a big smile for me as I said good-bye to him before I alighted from his car. I can’t remember any time that he was ever angry or sullen or grumpy. What a grea…

A Chinese who cannot speak Chinese

I am Chinese but I cannot speak Chinese. To many, I don’t even look like a Chinese. Some identity crisis, huh?

Just yesterday. I was chided about the way I handled a sensitive case with one of the customers of our café. The conclusion was “Serene doesn’t know how to handle things in the ‘Chinese way’”.
This has been a recurring chorus in my life… I am not Chinese enough.

When friends laugh and poke fun at my inability to speak Chinese… I can only laugh along and agree what a terrible person I am, not being able to speak a word of my so called native language. Their eyes demand an explanation. I am obligated to justify myself… to offer an explanation for my condition. It must be some kind of sickness it seems.

When coffee shop aunties and taxi drivers speak to me to take my order or ask my destination, I can only try to follow as best as I can with my smattering of Chinese… and try my best to make myself understood with the few words and sentences I know in Chinese. I am already familiar w…

Marathon weekend at the Cafe

Hello… well, a lot has been happening on my side for the past few days. It has been a looong tiring weekend since Friday afternoon. Mabel was really sick last week since Wednesday. We had a major special event on Friday afternoon – product launch of a new game. The inventor of the game came to Singapore and organizers of the event chose to hold the launch at our café since we were a gaming café. On top of that, we had people from Disney Princess magazine who wanted to come to our café on the same day to do a review on our establishment. That same afternoon, some kids from a local primary school dropped by our café and wanted to feature us in their school magazine. Since Mabel was sick, I had to take half day leave to stand in for her. I was totally flat out by the end of the day!

The next day, we also had a major event – a children’s birthday party. Mabel was still sick so I was in charge of hosting the party. It was no party for me, that’s for sure. The family postponed the time of th…

Has your hubby cooked for you before?

Yes, he has cooked for me before. He doesn't really know how to prepare 'western style' cooking. But he noticed that I often like to order Yong Tau Foo for meal (actually I order it because it's healthy). So one day he called me at the office to tell me he was cooking Yong Tau Foo for dinner. He went and bought all the fish balls, bean curd, crabsticks etc... all by himself. I arrived home to see him happily fussing around in the kitchen. He cooked SO MUCH! I think he overestimated the amount of food... so we ate fishballs for the next 2 days for dinner. It was also sweet that he bought some authentic nonya style garlic chilli especially on my account, even though he himself doesn't take it. So that was a memorable event... just the two of us eating home made Yong Tau Foo cooked by my own hubby!

Savour the moment

I was listening to a friend who was telling me how frustrated she was that her BF recently moved house to somewhere much further away from her place. It was especially frustrating since the both of them are extremely busy people. She was a cell leader and actively involved in church as well as many sports activities. He also had a lot of after work activities and sports practices to attend every week. Their relationship was becoming strained because they had so little time together.

I reflected that it would be good to persuade him to move to a place that is not so far away… and possibly but down on some of their team sports activities and devote the time to playing couple sports like tennis together. But sometimes, all this could be a time of testing… if a relationship can withstand this difficult and strenuous time, then it shows that both people are strong enough to retain your individuality yet able to flow together as a couple.

MH and I also find it frustrating at times that we hav…

Of Laundry and Hair-mountains and more Affogato...

Just came back from the cafe tonight. We meant only to drop by a while as it was not actually our turn on duty, but in the end we stayed all the way until 1.00am. I think MH and I are both feeling a little tired and snappish. This is not meant to be a long term practice of working there every weekend. But since this business belongs to us, we are driven by every bone and sinew in our body to labour for it to make it work. But we both cannot deny that this will eventually take a toll on us. So we definitely need to find a solution to improve the whole system of running the place, so that we will not have to feel the need to "help out" all the time, or worry about whether everything will run smoothly if we are not there. It was really busy at the cafe just now - full house! If we hadn't dropped by to help, Mabel and the rest of the staff may have found it difficult to manage.

Sometimes I feel that MH and I don't have enough time to spend with each other. But I can't…

Looks can kill

I just got off the phone with my parents just now. I always enjoy talking with my parents. I know many people who find it difficult to relate to their parents as friends – this concept is very foreign to them, they can’t imagine joking and chatting their parents in such a candid manner. So I count it one of my many blessings that I have this kind of relationship with my mom and dad.

It’s interesting how the relationship between parents and children change over time. It begins with children as dependants on their parents. And as they grow older, the relationship evolves into mutual respect and even interdependence. The pastor conducting our Marriage Enrichment Course says that interdependence between parents and children can only come when children gain their own independence first. I am grateful that my parents have the grace and openness to release us children to gain our own independence… I realise this is actually not an easy thing for parents to do. Many parents try to hold on to t…

Letters from the past...

I was looking through some of the 'guest cards' from our wedding. The many warm and funny messages made me smile.

When the world looks bleak and you think "Life can't get any more 'sian' than this". It's things like this that help you see the world through rose-tinted glasses once again.

Zooming in on the personality of the day... my hubby!!! (minimal sentimentalism almost guaranteed)

Sunday night... *SIGH*
Another busy weekend is coming to an end and tomorrow it's back to the office again.

Although my life seems to be all about work and our new cafe, I shall resist the urge to talk about the cafe (again!) and try and be more reflective about other matters...

Let's see... hmmm.... okay here goes...

Earlier this week, one of my closest friends broke up (sort of) with her BF. I considered it a break up because one of the phrases he used during a really SERIOUS conversation they had was something like "we should try to spend time together to continue to build the FRIENDSHIP". But I really cannot say for sure that he was trying to end the relationship at all, so don't take my word for it. Although they discovered vast differences in their expectations (e.g. different ambitions, ideals, values) but my friend still wants to fight to make the relationship work and not give up so easily... otherwise what was the point of the whole getting together?

I reall…

Hustle and bustle of business

It's almost 1.00am on Saturday morning - 5th March. MH and I just returned from a tiring but fruitful evening at the cafe an hour ago. I thought I'd better squeeze in a word or two before I retire... in case I don't have time to write tomorrow, at least you'll have some idea of what has been happening here.

All 6 tables on the 1st level of the cafe was packed with customers all evening... and we had some turnover for about 3 of the tables from 6.00pm all the way until 11.00pm. Although I am a wee bit tired, but I'm feeling excited about the cafe and I can't wait for tomorrow to be there again. My colleagues will be dropping by at 1.00pm tomorrow... it will be fun to have them around - they're really a nice jolly bunch.
Things are still a little bit messy at the cafe as we do not have 100% of the systems fully in place yet such as the credit card machine and the cashier... but so far things are going pretty well. We had a couple of power trips today but we'…

Rejoice with those who rejoice…

Currently my office workload is in a sort of lull period. I am currently in between projects… finishing off one project and about to start another one. We sent out our draft final report last night and today I spent the day preparing for a new project that will start next Monday. It’s nice to have a breather in between projects to brace yourself, sort out numerous emails that have been piling up for the past few weeks… and it’s nice to have a nice new clean project to start afresh.

My parents and my youngest brother – Paul, will be participating in a survey conducted by a colleague from our HK office. It’s a very interesting survey to find out the spending patterns of Malaysian students studying in Australia. This is the time Paul will need to ‘fess up and be truthful about his spending… but I’m sure Paul will not have any deep dark secrets about his spending… he has always been quite thrifty.

Our café will have its soft launch starting from tomorrow, Friday 04-Mar. Reservations have al…

News update on Australia and The Cafe

Update on major happenings in our lives:

1. Moving to Australia

MH has decided (together with me) to accept the offer at Sydney. This does not 100% confirm that we are going yet because he still needs to go through an internal interview etc. The exact date is not confirmed yet. One person told MH that they need this position filled in 2-3 months time. But another person MH spoke to said that it could extend up to end of the year. So hopefully, perhaps we will actually need to go through a major rush after all.

Our partner, Mabel is quite ok with the situation. She says she was prepared for it and knew it would happen sooner or later anyway because we told her about our PR. Our other partner is not so happy… maybe he didn’t truly realise the implications until now (although we did make it known to both of them about our Australian PR)

But the conclusion is that both MH and I still want to carry on this business and we are prepared to work it out with our partners so that one feels shortcha…

Starting out my two cents collection

Yesterday, I mentioned to a friend, "If I could collect all the two cents worth I've been giving for all these years, what a collection of cents I would have by now"
She replied "I couldn't put a price to your thoughts... they're priceless..."
How profound!
So I thought of starting my personal collection of two cents worth for myself and for the people who matter to me in life, especially my family and friends overseas or back in my hometown whom I do not see and cannot talk with all the time.So perhaps my sharing my thoughts and reflections every now and then, it wil bridge the distance and bring us closer together even though we may be far apart.
So here is where I start...

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DSC07989Our DIY outdoor chalkboard

Today’s entry is not so much a post as it is just a way to showcase the latest addition to our outdoor play area… Our new mega sized outdoor chalkboard!


SnailCraftCollage2Learning about snails

This past week has been all about snails.The children are always fascinated by the snails in our garden and ask endless questions about them.A couple of weeks back, one of my boys stumbled across a snail crawling along the ground.


[image%255B6%255D.png]DIY magnet shapes

A couple of weeks ago, I had posted this snapshot of these set of magnetic shapes I made on my Instagram. I received a few curious questions on how I made them.


DSC06501A_thumb[1]Three Questions

And so Nathan’s very first day of kindergarten is over. It was a mixture of good, bad, sweet and sour. I think that so much happens throughout the day, it can be challenging for a little person to filter through it all.


DSC05282My cup runneth over

These days my days are packed full to the brim. From the moment I wake up to the sound of Grace calling through the baby monitor and Nathan’s cheeky face peering at me over the edge of the bed… to the evening when I finally tuck them into bed and say goodnight.