Thursday, January 31, 2013

Foodie Fridays - The Line @ Shangri-la Hotel Singapore

Recently our company holds our Chinese New Year lunch at The Line in Shangri-la Hotel Singapore, its a little bit early but we have to find a time where every one is in town and not on business trip on some other parts of the world.  Well, we had a great time and every one (all 16 of us) ate till our tummy almost explode!

The food was good but I think we choose the wrong day coz there was a seminar going on and The Line was running FULL HOUSE!  Imagine the crowd, the noise, the dins and the overwhelmed feeling of being squashed (because the bigger built Caucasian from the seminar took up more then half of the restaurant!).  We can see it clearly that our Big Boss is not too happy with it, especially when the waitress who, without informing us and probably thought she did us a favour, decided to move us from the original quiet corner to the centre of the restaurant where all the actions are!

And because of that I took limited out of focus photos of their delectable to-die-for food as its kind of hard to jostle my plate in one hand and my Samsung SIII on the other or to dance around the other patrons with the camera trying not to get in their way lest they give me some rude sound (they say Hungry Man is An Angry Man right?  Better don't mess with that).

I simply love their sashimi which is always fresh n juicy, it helps when the chef only takes out the salmon or tuna from the small chiller and slice the pieces when you order it.  There's something about eating chilled sashimi, the chilling sensation on your teeth when you bite into them, the stinging rush of the wasabi up to your nose and feeling the sashimi flowing smoothly down your throat... HEAVEN~~

Oysters are a little bit disappointment today, its not as fat as juicy but nonetheless are still fresh and sweet.  And I guess there are too many people asking for them, understandable that the chef is tired from shuckling it, he wasn't giving me a smiling face when I went to take 2 oyster from that station *ooppss*

The Raws!

Usually I don't go for roast chicken as I was afraid it may taste dry and tough, however the 2 whole chickens at the counter looks very inviting and I took my chance.  They did not disappoint me, they taste as good as they look, soft, tender and juicy, add a little mustard and its perfect!

Roast Chicken

On the way I took a little bit of the cooked food to go with the roast chicken, have to save the stomach for the rest of the goodies.  Love every thing on my plate!

My plate of pineapple rice, roast chicken, teo chew steam fish, stewed beef and a mysterious cheesy mushroom crepe lookalike thing.

I did not know they have roast food too, saw it while I was walking pass one of the station.  Not sure whether its tasty or not but since there is no queue means its not so great? 

Roast Pork, duck & char siew

Their satays are going off like hot cakes!  My colleagues have to go back a few times before they can lay their hands on a few sticks of satays.  I'm not a satay fans so I leave them for those who adores them.

Satays that got snatched up the seconds they are out!

We are seated near the noodle station, how can I miss out the chance to savour their laksa?  Besides laksa they have mee siam, prawn noodles, fishball noodles and wanton noodles.  The chef is very obliging, one of my colleague wanted fishballs with soup only and he promptly asked how many she want.  Seeing that the chef is ok with her "special" request, she further asked if she can have some mushrooms and 2 prawns in the soup, which the chef obliged with a smile on his face.

Check out the huge elaborate veggie display at the station!

Noodle Station

Laksa~~~ Thick creamy gravy with a hint of coconut, the way I like it but rarely able to taste it in the local food courts or coffee shops.  There are tau pok, bean sprouts, fishcakes and quail egg in it.  Its sinful but who cares!

Delicious laksa

Me enjoying my laksa~

Last but no least, the all time every one's favourite - DESSERTS~~~~

Due to the crowd, I was only able to take 3 pathetic photos of the desserts, truly UNJUST to them and I'm not feeling happy about it too.  Besides the fondue, fresh fruits and the cakes section, there is also the nonya kueys, ice cream & crepes section.  Most of the plates on the nonya section are either empty or almost empty so I did not take a photo of it, must be delicious and got snatched up fast & furious.  Long queue at the ice cream and crepe section too!

Fondue anyone?

Colorful cakes

To die for desserts

Again, not a true blue dessert person but they are too pretty to skip!  The strawberries in the strawberry short cake is big and generous, I like it a lot.  And what not to love the tiramisu and anything chocolate?  Mmmmmm~~ with capital M!

Strawberry short cake, tiramisu and a devilish looking chocolate cake

That ends my 2 hours lunch which I have no regrets even if I put on a few kilos.  Truth to be told, I was still feeling full at dinner time 4 hours later, so perhaps you would want to go easy with the food if you decide to go there for dinner.

*** *** ***

Lower Lobby, Tower Wing

Operating Hours
Opens daily from 5am to 1am

- Continental Buffet
5am – 10.30am (Daily)
- Full Buffet
6am – 10.30am (Monday to Friday)
6am - 11am (Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays)
- À la carte
5am – 11am (Daily)

12noon - 2.30pm (Monday to Friday)
12noon - 3pm (Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays)

6pm - 10.30pm

À la carte
11am - 1am

Dress Code

Smoking Policy
Smoking is not permitted at The Line.

Remarks : I am in no way affiliated to the management of The Line restaurant or have been compensated to write about this. All opinions are 100% based on our experience during our visit. 

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This linky is for anything that is FOOD related. It could be a restaurant you visited recently, meals you cook with your family or for your family or recipes you wish to share with every one.

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Little Boys love shopping too!

We went shopping for Chinese New Year last weekend. I decided to let DinoBoy choose his own clothes since I think that he's a big boy now.  I decided to let him shop at Zara & Esprit as Regina told me that they were having sale, SALE is a very exciting word to hear so we made a beeline for it.

I was little disappointed with Zara as there was only a small section for boys; as compare to a HUGE selection for the girls and babies *hhmmpphhh*  We were going through the tees and chance upon the skull tee which DinoBoy insist that its zombies.  We found nothing that he like and left the shop after paying for the zombies.

We head off to Cotton On Kids to get a pair of socks.  Actually saw a pack of 7 brightly colored stripe socks at some shop (forgot where) but thought I'd give it a miss as I think DinoBoy will not have many chances of wearing socks now that he's in primary school and weekends shoes are either slipper or GAP playground shoes.  He choose this bright blue with black star socks.

We head off to Esprit and saw these 2 cute  monster tee which he immediately says OK!  He was contemplating between a red or blue tee for the monster with the comb and after thinking for a while he decided on the blue tee.  We looked around, I saw a bermudas which I asked if he likes it but he promptly say "Not Nice, don't like this color [beige]".

We only spent SGD33.25 on the above, SALE is really and always music to my ears.

PS :  I did not insist on getting a pair of pants or bermudas as there is a new one pair of beige *ooppss* pants hanging in his wardrobe.  I also decided to get tees only and not polo tee or shirt as he will have fewer chance of wearing them.  And of course no red red Chinese button/collar CNY set of clothes for this boy coz this mummy wants something he can wear at every occasions, plus after the tees grow out of shape or color faded he can still wear them at home, cost saving!

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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wordless Wednesday - Our furry hamster

Foey, our 1 year old plus hamster is making her rare appearance today!

This fat little round white ball of thing was having a snooze in her food dish when I decided to whip out my Samsung SIII and start snapping away. 

Above photos are taken with my Samsung SIII mobile phone camera with NO editing done, I am extremely pleased with the photo's quality, its clear (not grainy) and sharp.  Shuttle speed is fast to capture the split second freeze moment of Foey.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

It all starts with a simple habit - Responsibility

Couple weeks ago on a Sunday Catherine tag me on her facebook post "have you done your homework", this was exactly how I felt at that moment... ...


Ok truth to be told, I actually KNOW that DinoBoy has some school work to be done.  I did ask him after dinner on that Friday & a few occasions on the following Saturday which he replied "Oh ya!  Have!  I'll show you later.", and "later" never materialized.  I was prepared to let him go to school the next day with his home work not done and face the punishment from the teacher.  However, Catherine's message made me hopping mad that I just couldn't keep quiet about it.  He got an earful from me for full 10 minutes and after that I told him that I will not be helping with this piece of home work.

This homework is actually a cut out prize ribbon which he is suppose to put his photo, write his name and birth date on it plus decorating it, I guess its going up on the class' wall for some purpose.  I told him that I do not have time to go to the nearby mall to print just ONE photo for him, he just have to find a way to do his homework.  Either he do not hand the work in the next day or he do it without any photo.  He was sad... then he said teacher told the class that they can draw a picture of themselves if they do not have photo.  I gave him a cold shoulder, told him to solve the problem himself.

So he took a piece of paper and start to work on it.  He drew, he cut out, he ran to the craft boxes and grabbed the glue to stick the self portrait onto the ribbon.  Wrote his name & birth date then ran back to the craft boxes to grab some small pom-pom balls, stars & flowers to decorate the ribbon.  I must say, he did a good job BUT i was so fuming mad that I forgot to take a photo of it.  After he's done, he show the finished piece of work to me with a proud look on his face.  I was beaming all over inside me and I am really proud of him for trying his best to do it instead of giving up or worst by breaking down into tears and demanding me to help him finish the work.  I showered him with a lot of praises for a job well done.

Then I explained to him the rationale behind my firm stand of not helping him to finish this piece of home work.  I told him clearly that he has to be responsible for his things, especially now that he is in primary school, it is different from child care centre where he can finish the school work the next day in school, in primary school he WILL be punished if he fail to finish and hand in his home work on time.  He must form a habit of keeping track of his things because I have many things to remember and some times things will slip my mind.  And if he does not pay attention to his things/work he will be the one facing the music from the teachers, not me or anyone else.  I was not sure if he understands what I am trying to put across and teach him but I left him with his solemn face, deep in thoughts.

The next day and the following few days, the minute he steps into the house he will take out his student handbook & yellow file to let me go through.  Well, apparently he remember the things I told him yesterday.  Till today he has been doing a great job in keep tracking of his things, some times we will talk about the home work he have and finished in student care while walking back home from school.


It may seems cruel and unloving initially when I ditched him with his unfinished home work, but I feel that I must let him see the big picture and the seriousness of the issue.   After all he is the one attending school, not me, if I were to continue to help him remember things or check on his stuffs every time, he will grow to rely on me more and more.  Eventually he will not be bothered to remember things, this is not how I want things to turn out.  Looking at this issue from another angle and treating this as a life lesson I would have taught already him something valuable, something call RESPONSIBILITY.

For with responsibility comes a string of other things.  You will feel the need to take charge of your life, to become some one who is able to make the right decisions, to do the right things so that you can pursue your dreams and hopefully become some one who makes a difference in some people's life.  

This, is what we want DinoBoy to achieve or hope that he will achieve in the future.  

This, is how we hope our teachings will mould him to be a better person.

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Monday, January 28, 2013

Encounter with a Flopsy Furry Rabbit

We were at Thomsom Plaza for our early lunch and DinoBOy requested to go to the pet shop to look at the small animals. A lady was looking at this beautiful loop ear rabbit, the sales assistant carried the rabbit out of the enclosure and put it on the floor.  It immediately hopped away and DinoBoy was running after it, amused by this furry little thing.

He approached the rabbit with caution but turned to run away squealing in excitement when it turned around and hopped towards him.  It was a 5mins fun but he couldn't stop talking about it for the rest of the morning.

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Wee Stories

Friday, January 25, 2013

Rest & Relax after a long week of school work

Most of the day when he comes home from school, you can see tiredness written all over his face.  After our dinner which usually ends around 8pm we will go through his handbook to check his home work (not alot so far, perhaps only 6 or 7) which he would have finished it while in the student care.  Sometimes there will be letters for me to read, money to be paid and misc.  Then he relax by the tv for about half an hour before heading off to the shower.

Some days after his shower he will laze with DinoPapa, slouching and relaxing, watching tv till bed time.  There were a few occasions he dozed off minutes after he laid his head on DinoPapa's chest.  These are the time we felt our heart wrench for this little fella who have to go through this.  Given a choice we would not want to put him in student care and want him at home straight after school, but regrettably such options are not available to us.

On Fridays, after coming home from dinner at Granny's, we allow him to stay up later then usual.  We let him do what ever things that he want, there are almost no rules for the night, we just want him to relax.

What more could a boy wish for when he could play a game or two, watch youtube movies on the ipad with his favourite Angry Bird plushie by his side?

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Foodie Fridays - Chinese New Year Reunion Dinner 2012

Chinese New Year is just round the corner, how is your preparation going on?  Have you bought new clothes and shoes for yourself and the family?  Have you started to decorate your house with those bright red new year ornaments?

One of the highlights of the Chinese New Year should be the reunion dinner.  Have you plan what you are going to cook for your reunion dinner?  Or perhaps its a "whole village" affair so you will be settling it in one of your favourite restaurant?

This year the in-laws will be coming over as usual for a quick dinner before we have to head off to my mum's for dinner with the siblings.  Thus we will be cooking something simple but have not decide on the dishes yet.

We started to opt out of steamboat last year and for the first time in many years DinoPapa cooked up a storm on the new year's eve to put on the table every one's favourite dish.  

~Here are the dishes~

Dish #1
Peng cai or poon choi - There are roast pork, roast duck, pig's leg tendons, sea cucumber, Fa-choi, scallop, abalone clams, fish maw, white cabbage, prawns etc etc.  Wow! Its really lip smacking delicious! 

Dish #2
Abalone with Spinch - MIL's favourite~ The abalone covers up the spinch, YUM!

Dish #3
Steamed Sea Bass - FIL's favourite~

Dish #4
Pig's trotter wth sea cucumber - DinoPapa & my favourite~

PS : Pardon the photos which was taken before I was given photography advise by DinoPapa & Adeline.

I would very much LOVE to know (ok ok I'm nosey) what are you having during your reunion dinner.  Of course I will share the DinoFamily's reunion dinner dishes too!  Therefore I will be doing up a linky in February 2013; have not decided on the exact date yet, so if you would like to share with us, remember to take loads of photos of the dinner and link up!

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This linky is for anything that is FOOD related. It could be a restaurant you visited recently, meals you cook with your family or for your family or recipes you wish to share with every one.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Wordless Wednesday - Zombie Attack!

During his recent make up lesson on the art school's term break, DinoBoy finished his work & pop over to the next class to "play" with teacher Syafiq who is not having any lesson at that moment.

The above stylo Zombie in yellow tee is drawn by Teacher Syafiq. I'll be hopping happy if DinoBoy can drawn that at his age hahaha~

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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Teach them the skills instead of being a worrywart

Its the 3rd week of the new year, how are your kid(s) coping with the new routine and environment in the new school?  And especially for those starting primary one, are your kid(s) adapting well?   For the pass weeks I have heard or read comments by friends in facebook on things their Primary One kids did in school, here are some of the example;

"My child has been eating the same food from the same stall for the past 3 days because  she doesn't know what the rest of the stalls are selling."

"My girl has not made any new friends and she is feeling miserable.  She keeps crying and refuse to go to school, she wants her kindergarten friends back."

"I just realized that the buddy system in my son's school is only on Day 2 & 3, they will be on their on after that."

"My son got bullied in school!  He got strangled by another classmate, he retaliated and got caught by the teacher who punished him without finding out the truth!"

"My child cannot understand her Chinese teacher who speaks with an accent.  I had a chat with this teacher and also have difficulty understanding her.  I am afraid that my child will not be able to catch up with the teachings, what should I do?  Should I feed back to the school?"

Truth to be told, I was caught worrying in a couple of the situations above, but my nightly chat with DinoBoy proves to be more assuring to me then to him, I know for sure that he is adapting well in the school.  Yes he did have sandwich for at least 3 days in a row; Yes the buddy system is only for the first 3 days of the school; Yes he was the one grabbing classmate's shirt at the chest *YIKES!* - ok that's not the topic for today, but in the end all turns out well; YES even for that last one.

So does it means that we should not worry about our children?  Of course not!  Since eon ago, parents earned the right to worry about their kids from the moment they were born.  We worry from every day little things like "is our baby drinking enough milk" to future things like "will he be a successful person when he grows up?".  However, has it become a habitual worrying that you hope and wish that it will turn out fine when the day comes OR do you teach your child the necessary skills to survive in any given, especially new situations?

We think we did a good enough job in this department.  We have taught DinoBoy to speak up, to be heard, to question, to participate, to defend, to retaliate, to obey, to show respect, to think, to analyse, to learn, to love etc... just to name a few.  We have taught him the skill to survive in a society. 

Since DinoBoy was a toddler we have given him much freedom and independence to explore on his own.  Being a toddler with curiosity crawling inside him, he explores, he check things out, he smile, he greets, he made new friends without any reservations.  This has built his level of self confidence which we think is an important basic element in the equation of life and in the world of surviving. He was 3 years old when he ordered his first bowl of fish ball noodle from the hawker centre and few months later paid for it after ordering, running back to me with the change in his hands.  He was not shy or unsure, he knows what he wants to eat and he set out to order it.  I need not push him, I need not urge him, I simply asked if he would like to order his own food and he eagerly said OK!

However, we know that not all children are as out going or out spoken or ready to jump into every challenge, some needs more encouragement then others, some needs a little harsh push too.  Which ever the case, we as parents must take the first steps to give our child the appropriate guidance and advice, teach them the necessary skills, show them the correct ways to progress in life.  Also, we must learn to let go a little bit, let them explore on their own even though there will be bumps and bruises, you will be there to nurse them back.  Sit back and watch how your little one transform from a defenseless caterpillar to a beautiful butterfly, you will be amazed by the changes in them.  Children have an amazing ability to adapt and survive in any situations, equip them with the proper tools and they will breeze pass the difficult times easily.  

Ok back to us, DinoBoy had cheese sandwich for the first 3 days in school because he likes cheese and saying that he does not know what the other stalls are selling are just plain excuses (in my view) to keep eating cheese sandwiches and of course from being reprimanded by me.  That 3rd night I encouraged & suggested to him to try to find out the food from the other stalls but was given the "No Way!" look plus a "I don't know how!" reply, I was starting to worry that he does not know how to READ (see, the worrying again).  However the next day he came back declaring that he had fish ball noodle during recess, in his exact words "I bought fish ball noodles to eat today.  Yupe, I just go to the stall and bought it, so easy."  See!  He can do it, its just a matter of whether he wants to do it or not; he also bought a packet of milk from the drink stall to go with his noodle.  Well done son!

Last but not least, make sure you make friends with the uncles and aunties in the school, namely the canteen stall holders, security guards and the cleaners.  They are the ones who see you child in the school everyday and it sure does not harm to have another pair of eyes to watch over them while we are away at work.

On a lighter note, what did Gloria Gaynor sang that inspired most of us, make us raise both of our hands and sing in agreement? *hold the image of Archie the bear in Dr Dolittle and sing together now*

Oh, no, not I, I will survive
Oh, as long as I know how to love, I know I'll stay alive
I've got all my life to live, I've got all my love to give
And I'll survive, I will survive, I will survive

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Bento fun for the kids

We signed up for a bento workshop organised by Alicia through her Home Learning group, the workshop was on 19 January 2013 and held in Anchorage.  It was a small group workshop and we had a blast of time!

It has been raining since morning but it did not dampen our spirits, we reached Anchorage at 2.50pm, 10mins earlier.  I was not familiar with the place as it was our first time at that place, since it was raining there wasn't any security guard I could asked for direction as they were taking shelter in the security guard house or some where.  We managed to find the location and saw that the workshop is not ready yet.  The teacher was still preparing things, we thought of hanging around outside but they saw us and invited us in.  We did not have to wait long before the rest starts to arrives.

The kids were excited to see so many new gadgets and things on the table, soon they were playing with the punchers, the spatula etc...

soon they got bored and its time for a game of...

That's the game DinoBoy played in his child care centre and he is teaching his cousins and friends to play this, sometimes insist that they play this rule.  Strangely they obliged though they have no idea the exact rule for this game and why he is always the one winning.

Soon everyone arrives and settled in, the workshop finally got started and it is conducted by Ms Josephine Yam of Baker1314.  She is very patient in explaining and showing us the various tools and methods to make cute little rice shaped such as Hello Kitty, star, heart, gingerbread man, Tigger, Pooh etc.  This is a kids hands on workshop so they are suppose to do most of the work with minimum help from the parents.

Bento Teacher Ms Josephine Yam

Every one's listening attentively at Teacher

A while later the *impatient* kids finally got their wish and starts to do their bento, they got their hands "dirty" but moulding, squeezing, patting the sticky rice into the different moulds. I was too excited to want to help DinoBoy (which he promptly rejects me) that I keep forgetting to snap photos!

DinoBoy had a chance to "play" with so many different tools, he was especially interested with cutting out the cheese and seaweed (both his favourite food) into flowers shapes.  On top of that, he gets to put them in the bento and decorate it any way he likes.  Needless to say he enjoyed himself to the fullest.

Hard at work

Look at DinoBoy's creation!  Ms Josephine also prepared some finger food, fresh vegetables and fruits for the kids to decorate their bentos.

Finally, our Bento!

DinoBoy even receive a Certificate of Achievement for a job well done!

Ms Josephine prepared cupcakes for the kids to enjoy after the workshop ends and DinoBoy is delighted to receive his cupcake as it is not as plain and boring as the ones I baked, its got a cute little monkey on it!

And what's best to enjoy cupcake with a friend, Ms Poppy... ...

Poppy & DinoBoy

How about enjoying it with TWO friends, Ms Poppy & Ms Dana?  Happiness to the MAX (though he looked "squeezed" by Poppy's overwhelmed enthusiasm hahaha~)!!!

Dana, Poppy & DinoBoy

And of course I visited the neighbourhood Daiso to get some bento tools, I hope to make some simple bento for DinoBoy soon.

Remarks : I am in no way affiliated to Bake1314 or have been compensated to write about this.  All opinions are 100% based on our experience during the workshop.