Wednesday, September 25, 2013

250913: Coffee Quote of the Day

Everyone should believe in something.
I believe I'll have another coffee.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

A watch's insight

Change does not necessary have to be something big or transformational.
It can be as slight as wearing your watch on your right wrist rather than the usual left.

Had this insight when I happened to injure my left wrist while doing some heavy lifting over the weekend - in case you are interested, I now have wolverine claws-like scratches under my wrist - which is a little painful whenever my watch's strap rubs over it.

The extra weight from the watch felt unusual on my right wrist. For a moment, it's as though my right arm was weaker. My senses was heightened even though I was doing the same stuff I usually do with my right hand; driving, picking up my bag, opening doors....

I was more aware of my every movement...more cautious if I may put it. Like the learning mechanism in my brain has kicked in and is saying, "Hold on, this is something new. Slow down while I learn.."

It's a teeny-bit worrying to think how easily we can fall into our comfort zones, our learned & safe zones, and rely on the auto-pilot mode to take over. And after watching a certain drama on the art of flying, I believe it's good to practice one's manual-maneuvering skills once in a while less we forget. You never know when you might need to perform an emergency landing and getting the plane to stop in time before that runway runs out....

Sometimes small changes are good to help keep us on our toes.

Perhaps you can try too and share your experience with me :)

Saturday, July 27, 2013

A Saturday Project

I've gone without a pocket tissue holder for a while now since I misplaced my Fendi holder, which I got at a real bargain at their outlet in Florence a few years back.

Not anymore.

I've decided to make my own. I realized I didn't have much material to begin with so I had to make do with whatever I could find from my trusty albeit a lil' dusty craft box.

Staying true to my motto of "Keep it Simple" when it comes to designs (also an excuse to make up for my lack of creativeness :P), I spent a few hours of my Saturday, measuring, cutting, and sewing..

Hah, I can't even recalled when was the last time I held a needle. Lucky thing I still remember how to do my "Insang Pari" ("Blanket Stitch"). Thank you Kemahiran Hidup (Living Skills) subject in F3!

And voila, here's yours truly's new pocket tissue holder..100% handmade :)

Sunday, July 14, 2013

With Eyes Closed

A tranquil Sunday just lying on the floor,
Feeling the coolness of the floor tiles against the skin,
the soft breeze from the ceiling fan gently caressing the face and playfully rustling the hair.
Inhaling the delicate scent of a Rose 4 Reines perfumed sachet.
Listening to the chirping of birds beyond the window under a cool, cloudy sky,
the cheerful cries of neighboring kids playing hide-and-seek,
with the occasional friendly barks joining in the fun..
And all away from the hustle and bustle of the traffic.

Some days should be enjoyed with eyes closed.

Peace, Tranquility, Serenity.
Refresh. Recharge. Reconnect.

Have a wonderful day, everyone!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Winning Shot

Well, not exactly first prize.

Won 6th place to be exact. A winning shot nonetheless, seeing that it was a win in my first ever photography & caption contest.

I don't usually participate in contests where I have to crack my head for slogans - I'm not creative like that. This one was a little different, maybe because it looked and sounded easier than all other contests. Oh, and did I mention the grand prize was a return air tix + 4D3N accommodations to Switzerland? (That sure got me seating up straight..)

Anyways, in conjunction with French Language Week 2013, all I had to do was take a shot of a building or a signage or a billboard, anything basically, that has a French word on it - name of a shop for example - and make a caption of the photo utilizing the French word. Piece of cake, isn't it?

Wait till you have to round almost the entire Penang in search for a shop with a French name, like I did. There were a few shops with French names though the challenge was not only to get a decently nice shot of the shop but to find one with a name that I could use to make a creative-sounding caption!

What I did was to capture the photos first and figure out the caption later. This way I would have a variety of words to select from for my "best" caption. And so began a French shop scouting adventure for me - La Vanille, Les Memoirs, Alliance Française, La France, Mon Délice Patisserie ....yes, I'll be able to tell you where they all are now *winks

Submitted just in time before the deadline. Yup, to be honest I did everything 2 days before it was due. Shuey even watsapp-ed me a photo she took in KL when I told her I might pass because I was lazy to go hunting. It was nice of her though I probably wouldn't have won if I had used her "less-than-sharp" photo, if you know what I mean LOL [no offence, Shuey!]

At the end of the day, well, I may not have gotten that Switzerland trip but I did win a products and treatment pax worth RM500. And I'm glad I won the 6th place rather than say the 4th spot, which was 1 free term of French classes at the French Alliance KL. Now, that would most definitely have gone to waste as I am presently already doing a wobbly juggling act with my weekly French classes, not to mention that KL isn't exactly 5 mins drive from where I live...

So if you are curious to know, here's yours truly's humble submission - nothing fancy really..

Till the next easy contest, au revoir! ^^

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Here's To Never Growing Up

There comes a point in life when you know you have to grow up.

But not tonight.

Tonight, let's make a toast..."Here's to never growing up!"

HTNGU, the first single from her upcoming 5th album, is a song by the beautiful and talented Avril Lavigne. The song is so catchy that one can't help but hope that they really needn't have to grow up. And you should really check out the MV - it makes allusions to her very first single "Complicated"; same outfit, same skateboard and all. I must say, 11 years into the industry, it's as though Avril never aged a day!

Can't wait for her to stop by our shores again for a concert. I can totally see myself rocking to this song

** Singing Radiohead at the top of our lungs
    With the boom box blaring as we're falling in love
    I got a bottle of whatever, but it's getting us drunk
    Singing here's to never growing up

Call up all our friend

Go hard this weekend
For no damn reason,
I don't think we'll ever change

Meet you at the spot,

Half past ten o'clock
We don't ever stop,
And we're never gonna change

* Say, oh just say forever, stay

   If you stay forever, hey
  We can stay forever young

[Repeat **]

# We'll be running down the street, yelling kiss my a**

   I'm like yeah whatever, we're still living like that,
  When the sun's going down, we'll be raising our cups
  Singing here's to never growing up

Oh woah oh woah here's to never growing up

Oh woah oh woah here's to never growing up

We live like rock stars

Dance on every bar
This is who we are,
I don't think we'll ever change

They say just grow up but they don't know us

We don't give a f**k and we're never gonna change

[Repeat *]

[Repeat **]
[Repeat #]

Oh woah oh woah here's to never growing up
Oh woah oh woah here's to never growing up

Say, won't you stay forever stay
If you stay forever hey
We can stay forever young


[Repeat **]

[Repeat #]

Oh woah oh woah here's to never growing up

Oh woah oh woah ( raise your glass and say )
Here's to never growing up

Sunday, June 02, 2013

The Great Gatsby

One of the best movies to reach our shores this summer.

With names like Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Carey Mulligan among the cast, how could it not be. Which is why I am rather surprised at the minimal screening The Great Gatsby is getting. Even the cinema was packed right up to the first neck-breaking row.

The film is an adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 novel of the same name and it follows the story of the mysterious Jay Gatsby, as recounted by his neighbor, Nick. The movie takes place in New York at the height of the Roaring Twenties so expect nothing but the most elaborate of sets. From iconic costumes, flashy cars, pompous carnival-like parties at the grand mansions of the rich upper class right down to the filthy "valley of ashes", an industrial dumping ground where the not-so-rich stays, one must really applaud the details that were put into bringing everything to live.

The storyline itself is dramatic and shocking yet filled with comedic moments that one could not help but be sucked into the jazziness of it all - not unlike how Nick was swept off his feet the moment he moved to West Egg, Long Island. Imagine he had to seek psychiatric help after that!

And then there is the soundtrack. The Great Gatsby featured a beautiful selection of scores and songs but the one that most stood out would definitely be the theme song, "Young and Beautiful", performed by the talented Lana Del Rey. She totally captured the soul of the song and the heart of the movie. When the snippet of the song came up in one of the scenes, it literally brought tears to my eyes. Such a sad yet surreal feeling...

I do not want to be dishing out spoilers but my heart does go out for Jay Gatsby and I concur with what Nick shouted to him toward the end of the movie:
"They're a rotten crowd. You're worth the whole damn bunch put together!"

Indeed he's worth more than they will ever be.

Ad finis fidelis.
My Rating:

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Eighty Tree Cafe

It was a case of serendipity.., stumbled upon the place as we were walking along Lebuh Cintra, with another destination in mind. The place looked inviting so we decided to check it out.

Eighty Tree is a cozy little cafe, almost invisible, in one of the many rows old pre-war shop-lots that make up the heart of George Town. At a glance, it was pleasantly decorated with knick-knacks, polaroids, artificial potted plants, books and what-nots, giving out a warm ambiance. It felt like as though one could easily laze the afternoon away here, sipping on coffees and nibbling on crackers, while the world sped by outside...

The menu looked pretty decent, with beautifully captured shots that showed some mouth-watering delights - toasts, soups, pastas, poultry, etc. From light snacks to more hefty meals, Eight Tree has a selection tailored for almost everyone. 

Except there are no cakes. 

One would think it's a norm for quaint little cafes like Eighty Tree to serve cakes and desserts. But nop, the owner mentioned about not being one of those "cafes", if I heard correctly. Anyway, it was fine by me seeing I am not really a dessert person myself *winks

The choices of coffee caught my eye too. There were items like toffee coffee, charcoal-brewed coffee, tiramisu coffee, among others. Quite a fresh list from the usual mocha-s, cappuccinos, and lattes, if you know what I mean. Coffee was served on a nice tray with mini crackers to savor.

I ordered the most interesting item on the menu - the candy floss toast. Actually it was more like marshmallow toast; made of rows of marshmallows on top of 2 pieces of toast and drizzled with chocolate syrup. Not a very healthy snack at all, hah. And while I had expected it to be sticky, I hadn't anticipate a layer of peanut butter underneath. Talk about peanut butter overload....definitely a one-timer for me.

And I've had better mushroom soups before - this one was just straight from Campbell. I guess the owner's right about not being one of those "cafes". Maybe someday I'll have to give the mains a chance and see how they fair.

For now, Eighty Tree is an alright-y place but they might need to do a little bit more than just a comfy corner to stay on the map.

Eighty Tree Cafe
83, Lebuh Cintra
10100 Penang

Sunday, January 27, 2013

iPhone: Bonnie's Brunch 2

Time to review this game in the midst of the long weekend. It has been backlogged for a while now and I feel a little guilty for not doing it earlier. Anyways, here goes my 2 cents...

Bonnie's Brunch 2, the sequel to Bonnie's Brunch (read my review here), was released sometime end of 2012. The game play stays true to its predecessor - serving a variety of brunches to customers while moving from place to place. The range of food items stays very much the same too; from croissants to bagels, tacos to hot-dogs  as well as sandwiches with different type of breads and fillings (hams, eggs, cheese, lettuce, sauces, etc). Even the type of customers do not deviate much. Though this time around, there is an impatient cute-looking alien who will not hesitate to electrocute your other customers if let to wait for too watch out.

And while the first game took place in France, leading to the City of Lights, Bonnie's Brunch 2 travels the USA, starting from The Big Apple. So we get to enjoy a different set of lovely artworks as we play. And if by chance you get tired of that, Bonnie's Brunch 2 now allows you to change the scenery with a background photo of your own. A little personalization feature but doesn't alter the game play in any way.

Also with Bonnie's Brunch 2, you can now make use of the coins you earned to buy "help" items - items that aim to assist you to achieve your goals much easily/quickly. To give you an idea, there's the Wealthy Candle (customer will give more tips), the Patient Music (increase customers' patience levels), the Speedy Power (speeds up your equipments; toasters and the likes of it), and a few others.

In truth, Bonnie's Brunch 2 might not be your cup of tea if you are expecting something entirely different. It'll work if you are a Bonnie's fan or if you are into this genre of time management games. Personally, I believe the difficulty level can and should be up a little more. I clearly did not have to try very hard to get 3-Star achievements in all levels. But I did make use of a couple of help items along the wasn't like I had any other place to spend my "hard-earned" gold coins, eh? *winks

One last note, there are a total of 8 chapters (10 levels per chapter) in Bonnie's Brunch 2 but only 6 are unlocked at the initial purchase. The remaining 2 chapters will have to cost another $0.99. Worthy or not, that's for you to decide.

My Rating:

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

2012 was the year

  • that moved slowly - almost frustratingly stagnant at times - except for a few significant changes that gave the year its splashes of color.
  • I was least active in my blog; only 16 posts in 2012 (~50% and ~75% drop compared to 2011 and 2010 respectively!) ...a new year resolution to write more perhaps?
  • I shared most of my thoughts through every day pictures and a couple of songs.
  • of tea appreciation with many "siplicious" moments. With a beautiful teapot-shaped tea strainer and the must-have deep-tea-diver, how can it not be anything but wonderful? *winks
  • I rocked and rolled to Avril Lavigne's Black Star Tour with Pat & Shuey. My 3rd Avril's concert and yes, I would do it all over again -  the 2-3 hours queue, the crowd, and the drenched look at the end. Oh, and next time I'll have a FOC light stick to take with me ..hehe
  • I decided to learn French, passed 3 levels of exam thus far with pretty satisfying marks, and wrote my first blog post in French too ...merci beaucoup!
  • of the full-blown internet shopping that ain't dying out anytime soon.
  • cafes and restaurants still played an essential part with a few becoming regular haunts - especially a certain aromatic affogato, mouth-watering grilled chicken wings, stir-fried brussels sprouts, chili-baked ladyfingers, and the ultimate "kam heong" crab.
  • I thought I read too little too few but well, I managed 11 books & comics combined .. not too bad, eh? 
  • I went back to Melbourne, Victoria after 5 years and discovered it all over again with many new spots added in. I had such an amazing time there it seemed like only yesterday ... I could almost smell the air and feel the cold wind brushing against my cheeks. Though not everything from my initial plan took off ... but I take it to mean that I would be going back again - some day!
  • I made the big leap to switch from what I'd been doing the past 8 years to an almost entirely different ball game. Though the feedback from the first 90 days have been assuringly positive *phew
  • a family member's health scare truly reminded all of us of how fragile we are and how we should really cherish and make every moment in life count. 
  • I became a first-time aunt to my bro's lil girl, and also to two other very close cousins' baby girls .. wow, I am officially old! lol
  • I received a request to review an iPhone game in exchange for a complimentary download (but have not done playing yet, oops) Soon...I promise!
  • TV series and movies continued to dominate my  free time. I was there in the Glee breakup episode, The Robin episode (the best HIMYM ep of all!) and of course, the Delena-finally-together-YAY episode of TVD. Yup, I was there through it all...
  • Rudolph saved Santa from the clutches of evil so we could all have a merry, merry Christmas.
  • I discovered the super oishi deep-roasted sesame salad dressing that is on par with Edo Ichi's, and my salad has never tasted better since!
2013 is a year filled with challenges and much to learn. A year that requires a lot of positivity, belief, faith and definitely some hard work. And a year to get that mojo back
So what better day to start than Day 1 of 2013, right? C'est La Vie ~

HaPpY NeW YeAr 2013!