Friday, March 22, 2013

Reunion: At Rodman's

The Chinese Lunar New year has long gone so i suppose its a good time to bring out those delicacy and start regretting the calories we have since put on :)

My apologies that the entry came too late, but i was busy with [the-usual-stuff] and thought this is no excuses i'll still have to use it -.-"  Trust me when i say i am really guilty about this .. please??? *wink*

... Anyway ever since thing between Rodman& i started getting serious, CNY had from then on became different for us both. We use to do our separate house visitng & celebration but now we try to at least cover reunion dinner together with our families. 

Thankfully for us, the boyfriend's family always held their reunion dinner earlier for they have to set off back to their house in Malacca to celebrate CNY, therefore so far there was one once (this year 2013) that there were clash in the dinner dates and we are fortunate to be able to enjoy dinner together with our families for the rest of the year nevertheless. 

Over at the Goh's, Aunty never fail to impress us with a lot more delicacy on top of the mandatory Steamboat fiesta.   This year was even special as they had invited their extended families over for dinner so the feast was more than we had wished for :)
Aunty's specialty - her soy sauce chicken that tasted like the real thin you would eat at a chicken rice stall.   However i wasnt a lover of tender, jelly-ish white chicken so i can only manage the breast meat (which i still duly loved & recommend to you )

Can you imagine how meticulous she was with her array of food that even the garnishing looks like it came straight out from the chinese restaurant.

The selection of uncooked food for the mandatory steamboat, the color of the food makes it really appealing, i am glad  i had my camera set straight to the correct mode so you can see the actual-ness of the colourful array

Something different from the usual steamboat this year was the sibling's suggestion to take away 奇味鸡 in addition to the chicken stock soup base. All of us are huge fan of this delicacy and with the added  bonus dinner that night was a hit.. especially with this chicken pot that we savour every bit till its dryness.

i learn this year that shabu shabu will be a hit among the younger generations, and most are particular which part of the animal did the meat came from, the hot catch is if its the collar meat.. hmmmm.. 

my favorite food  for all steamboat feast - dried tofu skin.

a huge array of mushroom, each to the liking of one individual that night :)
We got the food arrange & display nicely while awaiting the arrival of the rest of his extended family.  While trying to curb our hunger we joke around & found interest in ang pow packets and the ornaments lying around Rodman's place
aint they adorable?

 As a significant to hoping for a better year ahead, the "Lou Hei" is a ritual that helps to "get over with the old and in with the new".. The ritual is symbolised by the ingredient  place neatly in the centre of a pretty plate while words of blessing is read aloud as it is placed. When all is done, those who wish to earn a bit of the fortunate & blessings from this ritual came forward and "fish"/Lou the ingredient & toss them up the air while shouting prosperous blessings...

This is a practice i wish will not die down because it signifies the Chinese joyous mood & positive hopes more than anything else :)

This is Rodman's sis camera being taken by mine.. i though the whole [camera-shot-camera] feels funny.

The entire waiting actually bores me a little so as we got fidgetive everyone did anything they could to stay away from oogling over the delicious food.
 i did my online shopping...
Rodman's brother & his wife pose for a picture 
and we periodically turn our head to catch a glimpse of the movie that was airing.

not too long after his relatives finally reached & it was dinner time, which i have zero pictures to describe the eating because i was too involve in eating.. but that is how the Reunion dinner at boyfriend's will be like... after dinner they either try to plan for some activities or head our separate ways if we have work tomorrow.... Pretty sweet don tyou think?


Monday, March 11, 2013

The Lunar Calendar

Got inspired today to blog on something that everyone generally has mixed feeling to. While reading some books recommended by friends & relatives i came to realize how alot of people have different form of belief for something that is coin by different terminology around the world.

Some would call it fate, others says its luck. Some can relate their life to being predestine while the others strongly believe they are themselves who alter how their life is lead - Cognito. What about those who had no explanation or who cannot make up their mind what to believe in? Well, here's one example of such kind - ME!   and to solve that dilemma i've open my arms to welcome feedback & opinions of the different kind of "ways-of-living" as suggested by others.

Last week, i made a trip to "Uncle" as Rodman reminded me how i haven't visit him in a long while. [Uncle] is someone i have little background introduction on. i was advise by his firm believer to take his words seriously and his telling are generally accurate. At first i was skeptical, but after too many coincidental accurate readings by this Fengshui Master (as i will to call him) i had no reason not to trust his advices & take them seriously. As per my acceptance to "The Secret", at this point, i should explain that the "advices" from Uncle is accurate only because of the manifestation of my own thinking (that is to say, the more you feel the real-ness of your predicament, the more accurate it will shape your reality)

An eerie example would his warning of my "mid-body" health during my visit at the start of 2011, he had mention, not just once, for me to take special care of my health around that area and initially i could not relate  it to anything except to watch out when doing sit ups, turns out only months later i would meet with probably the largest health scare of my lifetime and undergo a major op on my abdominal. Prior to my operation i again drop him another visit providing more information of what was to come, he made a commendatory that give so much relief "you'll be fine, nothing to be afraid" .... and man.. was it comforting :)

After that huge shock, i attempt to visit Uncle again in march last year when i was down with my luck as finance burden started piling up & then comes the news from my parents to prepare a a large sum of money to urgently purchase a house. Everything was getting out of control and i desperately needed his advice. Unfortunately, he was nursing a bad health and could not attend to us when we visit, when i pop over the altar place at his place i prayed for peace & spoke to him slightly. I knew than that it was  up to me to shape my destiny, at least till he has recover. Looking back , i am really glad i made it through and have a nice & comfortable home with the support of my boyfriend & family:)

So last Saturday, together with Rodman, his mum & sis, we've decided to try our luck to visit him again. Upon reaching, i could see the  the familiar queue of believer all waiting to speak to him. We pray to the altar & sat by the side, waiting for our chance.
If you have never seen a Fengshui, here are some things you might want to prepare in advance for your visit (i visited him countless times without the info& his advices always seems to come with a clause, i dare say his advice would be accurate if you are more prepared. 

  1. Your birthdate per the Chinese Lunar Calendar
If you are unsure of your chinese birthdate, i can suggest the MOST ACCURATE of finding out. Just log into Google & enter the following keywords e,g " 1987 Chinese Lunar Calendar .pdf".   Replace the year you are born with the year indicated and out pops a few thousand application, all ready to count your chinese birthdate for you. My birthdate falls on 31jan1987, and by the chinese lunar calendar (and my mum's own accurate memory of me being born during Chinese New year), i am a 正月初三 baby. 
2. Your Time of birth

This is probably the most difficult preparation you need. I can only count on my mum's good memory + some documents by Mount Alvenia Hospital (where i was born) to help. 

3. Someone who can understand chinese proverbs / Hokkien very well

Thank God Rodman's mum is an expert on this & Rodman is not easy feat himself. i had difficulty understanding whenever Uncle translate my destiny for the year in dialect so its up the rest of them to explain to me when my session was done. 

That is all you will need to prepare, the Fengshui Master will help you with the rest now. 

By the time it was my turn to speak to Uncle, i had prepare an ang pow (red packet) containing some money to express my appreciation of his services. There are no minimun amount for this, i increase the money based on my salary as i grow.   You will sit beside him, and 

Uncle: "your chinese birthdates"
Me: “正月初三”
*i told him..... He will scribble some stuff as his flips throught the almanac.  

Uncle: "i am always so worried really really counting Rabbits (my Chinese Zodiac).... They are always on the opposite end of their destiny, either they 一飞冲天 if not 一败涂地。 The clear line that differ them are the time of their birth... i am always worried for Rabbits"    

*this is nothing new as i have heard him say this about us Rabbit in every visit, he will never repeat the same to other Zodiac, only Rabbit, and each reading about Rabbit is different, the lady that spoke to Uncle before me was also a Rabbit, he mention a different advice to that he had gave me. 

Me: tells him my time, accurately followed by saying it is in the wee morning/slightly before noon/after noon/ late afternoon/ night/ midnight....

Uncle: "you are having a good year Xiao Mei, everything is going well for you "
*obviously happy because this is the first time i heard something positive followed by a smile

Me: "Uncle what do you mean by good, my luck? My career? My health?"
Uncle:" do you gamble Xiao Mei? Your luck is not based on hardwork this year, you will meet with surprise fortune here and there, everything will goes well this year"
Me: "Uncle, you sure? i do not gamble & i dont bet on 4D..."
*my reply, much to the dismay of the audience who seems genuinely happy for my readings \
Uncle:" Oh you should try your hands on small bets, nothing major.. just for fun... a toto or something.. a quick bet.."
Uncle: "Do not eat anymore beef XiaoMei, your saviour is the Great Guanyin Ma, you should not eat beef when you are devoted to her"
*throws a quick glance at Rodman, who was equally shock that he had caught me trying beef... .i have skip beef my whole life due to the stench which i dislike... but recently my love for IKEA meatballs gave me away... then Rodman also introduces other delicious beef cuisine that i am slowly learning to accept....... i can even conclude expensive beef like Wagyu & sirloin does not stink as bad as the other beef would.. 
Me: "ok Uncle, i will skip beef, My boyfriend is an ox (his Zodiac)... haha.. i dont want to eat him up.. *giggles*"
Me: "Uncle can i also ask about the new house i have bought & my health for the year?"
Uncle: "Nothng you need to worry about! The rest will do just fine, everything is going up for you"
Me:" But i had a health scare per your advice last year, are you sure it's all going to be fine?"
Uncle :"i'll run a ceremony on you, you'll be blessed nothing will go wrong this year"

and that is how my session with Uncle went this year. The next day, Rodman drove his mum, sis & me to give thanks to 观音菩萨 as well as offer our respect to 虎爷。  The comfort from his words gave me a new strength to face the challenge ahead. That sunday morning i also joined thousand of ladies to take part in the Venus Run 2013 & i am proud to announce my average pace for a 5km run has improve by about 1.30min compared to the pace last year at august 2012.   i shall work harder to conquer my second 21km standchart marathon given this year, so as to maintain a healthy body that does not give in to the side effect or Mercilon (my permanent medication, side effort might not be the real reason) OR the stupid excuses i have been giving for the now slightly chubbier look.


Friday, March 01, 2013

brussel sprout 2013

[[heavily picture loaded post]]

Paperstop plan a unique experience for my birthday meetup in 2013.  It was an unforgetable day because of the surprising elements she had in mind.... i was told to report at 6.15pm by the station and we took a train to who knows where..    i was told to drop off when we reached.. 
when us two ladies meet, it usually endless pictures taking of each other and then comparing the camera to see who took a better shot.... 

We started out as colleagues in our previous company and the other ladies had to warn us to stop cam-whoring & eat our food during lunch time... amazingly with that little food we eat when we meet, she is a size zero & i am that much bigger... hmmmmmm
as it turns out Paperstop had done her homework pretty well (except maybe the directions.. we had our little hiccups - as usual)... we finally arrived at Brussel Sprouts & was brought to our sits because she had done a reservation earlier!    Very gentlemen move you have there young lady... bet you learn it from a gentleman  haha
the food served at brussel Sprout are awesome, Paperstop did a research earlier & confirm their mussel was worth the try. We had a choice to taste unlimited amount of Mussels but we pick the single portion instead because i didnt feel we can finish that much food. The fries served were ok-tasting but dont be fooled by the "free-flow" option because the crowd comes around dinner time and by then you'll fine it impossible to get a refill done. (besides, their food comes in huge portion there really wasnt much appetite left for fries if you ask me)

One of the main reason i got my camera was due to its self-shot function, and this is one great moment that the camera was put to good use, just look at the amount of self shot we took.. 
coincidently both of us came in the same shade :)
lotsa of chatting, very little eating, busy crowd & fantastic music in the house... Even the staff were getting high, cheering on customer to order beer during happy hour, special happy hour.. and all sorts of excuses.. 
too soon, Paperstop had to pop over so we can take our pictures better.. i notice we have the almost same hair color.. haha
the picture taking simply wont stop.. we could be talking serious, but our finger continue clicking away.. 
she said this could be the lowest shoulder she ever had to lean on... but did it anyway..... i like us together... she make a great friend.
what happens when we ran out of poses... it gets geekier.. hahhaa.. 
i think we took alot of pictures that even the table behind us was astonish... at one point you even hear them giggling, laughing at us, but it was the embarressment we felt from being laughed at. 

With close friends anything is do-able, possible, so much so that #notAsingleF***WasGivenThatDay

Then the tricky part came, i think we stayed long enough that the food was beginning to feel less tasty, or edible. i look over to Paperstop and said "shall we get the bill? we could continue our camwhoring elsewhere" 
she said" not yet, there is this thing i wanna show you"  (that "thing" was never found.. wonder why) then she call for the waitress & whisper to her..   without suspecting too much i continue our camwhoring.. 
eventually, Paperstop's plan got screwed up because 
1. the reservation was done in advance with a special arrangement, which didnt take place BECAUSE we hadnt spoke to the correct person (like duhz... we were suppose to recognize someone by their voice?!)
2. the waitress she call on to serve the surprise did not get her msg - via whisper
3. the waitress took out a piece of napkin & ask her to write on the napkin... i wonder what she was asking for.. 
4. the waitress got more confuse when i piece everything together & told Paperstop it wasnt worth her anger that her surprise got screwed, and i told the waitress i dont need it anymore

Well... nothing to complain about because i could tell they were genuinely apologetic when they found out the "surprise" was meant for me, who had caught them dumbfounded. Eventually Paperstop requested for my surprise to be served.. anyway... and the waitress pats us on the shoulder and promise the night wouldnt get any worst.. haha.. i really like her "ok.. we make a mistake.. but screw that..we'll bring you MORE fun" kind of attitude.... 
and this... *sobx..sniff..sobx..sniff*  was surprise PaperStop had called to arrange for earlier.... WHY YOU SO NICE TO ME MINNIE MOUSE#1?!!!!!!!!!!!!
the crew got together & make an annoucement that it was my birthday, then they proceeded to sing a brazilian version (by so i meant the whistle, dancing, clapping version) of Happy birthday.... i was embarress.. but i was giggering too much to care.. i was actually HAVING FUN.... and Paperstop did a marvellous job i dare say.. 
after they sang the song, i tot all was over & thank them all for the lovely surprise.... then Paperstop & i took a picture of the cake.. make a wish & blew out the candle... before Ms "promise-more-fun" returns & throw me my next challenge.. 
my astonish face, all too scare to know what is in for me... a staff pops over & explain the game... 

look at the genuine pleasure look PAperstop had on her face, knowing fully well i was going to embarress myself for the challenge... 

i shall not go into details how the game was played, all you need to know was the shot glass contain whip cream+some mix "juices" and the game was call "BLOWJOB"
yup.... i did it! with encouragement, cheering & jeering from my beloved friend, just look at her amusement face... classic...... man... i felt so brave... must be the mussels.. 
me and my cake that came tooooooooo differently.. 
tasted yummy too.. even the font were tasty.
the young lady who had made it possible.. 3Q sweetheart!
one last shot of us at Brussel Sprout.. and we call an end to our dinner date... 

and you thought that was all?
of course not.. haha.. 

not too far from the diner was where the colorful bridge stands (Paperstop & i prefer to call it the ugly bridge, and reckon the only reason why its a happy bridge is because of how silly it looks.. and that makes us both happy)
making full use of the spot light by the bridge
you look stunning minnie mouse
and becuase we couldnt bear to say goodbye... here's lot more
this series of pictures here make me smile ... i know i will look back at the album & recall this day where i had so much fun with you.. 

thank you minnie mouse.. i appreciate how much you have put into our friendship.. cheers to all that years ahead we are gonna have to put up with each other.... i love you Minnie mouse :)