Monday, February 27, 2006

Janine's 1st month party

Posted by Dawn at Monday, February 27, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Yesterday, I cooked a hearty breakfast with Grapefruit juice. Check this out! As you can tell, it is Italian bread with fried eggs, and whole slices of luncheon meat with lettuce. I was inspired to cook this from a HK drama serial I watched where a couple went to an eatery to have this for breakfast and the gal was complaining that her mom uses whole slices of luncheon meat, rather than small bite sizes of meat. So, she was telling how much she would miss her mum's luncheon meat sandwich when we goes to US. Haha...So, that is why I pan fried whole big slices of luncheon meat.

It is definitely yummy..but I felt so so full after eating this. Tat was why I drank grapefruit juice to appetise my stomach.

Today, is my niece's first month party. The actual day is actually 2 days later, but being usual Singaporeans, we are all so busy that weekends are better for most people.

Went first to my parent's place to take the car together to Bukit Timah where my brother stays. But before that, we had to help carry my dad to the car.

We went earlier to play tennis. Played doubles with my cousin, and my god-sister, Chloe. My dad took Chloe as a god-daughter during his stay in SGH as she was his physiotherapist. She happens to be the same age as me, from HK and coincidentally, she is from the same church as me! Never knew..

That is Chloe helping my dad in the picture, with the helper and my mum, while CT is in the car pulling my dad.

We played for about an hour, as my dad was the umpire and scorer. My dad is a very good in tennis. Actually, my dad is an all-rounder who plays well in all kinds of sports. I am very sure he would very much love to play with us.

While we were resting, my uncle and auntie wanted to play. It was real fun watching them play as they were improperly dressed! Haha...

Above is my uncle playing in long sleeve shirt and pants.He used to be an accountant for many years but is now retired and happily taking care of his huge collection of orchids in his garden. When I went to his house one day, he passionately showed me his collection and told me a lot about orchids. I, myself love orchids but I am not sure whether I can take care of them..Simply amazed at how my uncle can take care of so many of orchids. Think it was about 100s of them.

This is my aunt. She is playing tennis without her high heels. She has been a teacher all her life and is still working in MOE in the CCA department, mainly looking into band. My parents all say my bro and I got her genes. Haha..

Anyway, we had a great time playing. My god-daughter, Phoebe came too! I was feeding her while CT was feeding me!

During the party, dad was holding Janine..

Brought Phoebe out to see the Koi fishes and playground as well..

Phoebe is only less than 2 years old and she already looks quite tall. Kids really grow up very fast!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Belated V-Day dinner

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, February 23, 2006 2 comments Links to this post
I have not started work yet and thus, have a lot of time with my family and run errands for them and for myself. Just this morning, I walked to Sengkang and did my supermarketing there as the NTUC there has more variety. compared to the one in Punggol. So, I did my grocery shopping there, bought a Toman Fillet Fish for dinner and got a big deep pot for myself.

I have always wanted to own a deep pot for soup. I always use a slow cooker for my soups but sometimes, I prefer soups that are thick, thus needing a pot of soup over a big fire. Once I bought the pot and walked back home, I immediately cooked soup with it!. I cooked papaya pork rib soup which I was very pleased with becasue of the natural sweetness and thickness in the soup. I boiled it over the big fire for an hour plus reducing the big pot of soup to 3 bowls of soup. I added peanuts, north and south almond seeds, honey dates, pork ribs and cut papaya. I have even planned my next soup to cook with this pot! Cant wait!

Last night, I finally celebrated V-Day with CT. Well, it wasnt actually a celebration cos it was just a usual dinner...but it was meant for that purpose. Anyway, we went "Outback Steakhouse" at Millenia Walk. I was hugely disappointed maybe because of my hugh expectations I have developed from eating in US so many times.

"Outback Steakhouse" in US serves larger portions at a cheaper price, with excellent service all the time! However, "Outback Steakhouse" in Singapore serves smaller portion at an expensive price, with very poor service! So of course, I was hugely disappointed with service in Singapore. I went into the restaurant earlier than CT as it took him a while to walk from City Hall MRT station. The waiter did not even bother about me-did not even ask me whether I wanted a drink or not while waiting. I was totally ignored. Nevermind about that. When we needed to order, we had to grab the waiter's attention by standing up and waving our hands frantically.

When the food was served, the waiter did not even notice that CT was without his cutlery. He just placed the food and left as if we were invisible. He should have asked, "Is there anything I can help you with?" People in the service industry need to learn to open their mouths and talk. I can understand that they might be shy but if they are shy and refuse to talk, they should be in another line.

I was disappointed with the portions because in US, when I order a main dish, it comes with free house salad or casesar salad. In Singapore, we have to pay for ordering a salad. So, when I ordered my main dish, all it came was one small piece of steak and my side dish, which was garlic mashed potatoes. Can you imagine paying S$30 for a small piece of steak and a spoon full of mashed potatoes? I was still hungry after eating though paying so much.

And again, to ask for the bill, we had to catch the waiter's attention..sigh..very tiring. When the bill came, it indicated that we ordered beer! Crazy! When we approached the waiter that we did not order, he seemed puzzled as if we were lying..Our tables only had ice water..where ever did the beer come from? Glad we had 20 Voucher from Maybank which helped reduce the price a little...If not, I will got nuts paying so much for a lousy meal and service. The food was tasty but disappointed by everything else.

I do wish Singapore will one day introduce the tipping service and hopefully, waiters and waitresses will thus serve better, despite their race as the foreigners sitting opposite our table seemed to be served much better as the waitresses were filling their cups for them and always going to their table.

Nobody came to our tables except during ordering and paying. Sigh..

Saturday, February 18, 2006

played tennis

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, February 18, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Today, ran errands by going to Maybank at Siglap to apply for a new card, then had lunch next door- Ampang Niang Tou Foo. Yum. I love "Yong Tau Foo"...

After that, went Parkway to change our US dollars leftover to Sing dollars and bank it in straight as we had so much leftovers. We were even so scared of getting robbed as we carried the stacks of cash from the money changer to the bank.Sigh of relief once we cash deposited it into the machine, thought still skeptical since machines may fail. Ha..

Went Korkor's condo at Bukit Timah after that to see the baby and played tennis. Actually booked the court from 3-4pm, but since I was there early and no one was playing, we played from 2-4pm. Boy, it is tough playing in such weather! I was perspiring so much and feel so faintish from the scorching heat...Made me miss USA and the wonderful weather!

I played against Korkor and CT and they also 'bullied' me by pairing up against me. Or rather, I should feel I won them both during individual games. It was all for fun and we had a great time.

Right after we played finished, someone took over the court but it rained and started pouring suddenly. Poor people-chose the wrong time to play.

Janine was sleeping so soundly and her hair seemed to have grown thicker. How adorable.

After bathing at Kor's house, we went for church service and then, had dinner at my mum-in-law's place. Loved home cooked food.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Time spent with family

Posted by Dawn at Tuesday, February 14, 2006 2 comments Links to this post
Today is V-Day. CT and I had discussed that we would not like to go out for dinner on this day because of the crowd and the exorbitant prices! So, we decided to spend this day with my family and I suggested cooking for my family.

I went Siglap early. Had lunch there and when my dad and mum went for physio, I went out to Parkway and ran some errands. I bought an exercise mat for CT as his V-Day present as we wanted to get one. I also collected some photos which I sent for development a week ago. When my parents came home, I gave them the photos. It was actually all the pictures of the accident leading up to today...showing the progress of my dad's condition. I thought he would like that as it is a reminder of how God has been good and how much He has healed him.

I prepared bak ku teh for dinner..there was also Lo Hei, steam fish and I did tang yuen as well. I love the peanut ones. Made red bean soup with lotus seed to go with my tang yuen. I had the red bean paste since US trip but never had the chance to use it. So, I finally decided to use it up today since I was going to do tang yuen.

I wanted the dinner to be simple, but in the end, we were all so full! Haha..

I invited Esther for dinner as well and we had an enjoyable time stuffing ourselves.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Took Mary Beth around

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, February 11, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
This few days have been raining. I left my house at about 10 am, took the bus to my parent's place. My dad's friends were there visiting him when I arrived. I went there to collect the car and then drove to pick up my friend, Mary Beth.

Mary Beth is actually CT's immediate boss' wife. She is probably about high 20s, just got married. She is from Chicago, US and has moved with her husband here for about 3 years for his work since they are setting up a new chemical plant here in Singapore. I knew her when we were in Knoxville, Tennessee as our husbands went there for work. So, we, wives went out together during the day time.

I went up to her apartment opposite Tanglin Mall. It is a very new apartment with modern design and modern looking pool. Very nice... i went up to her house and saw her pet rabbit which she just got. She got this place unfurnished and had to buy all her furniture and kitchen ware here.

After touring a nice place, I took her to Parkway parade for lunch. I wanted to bring her there as she has not really been to the East side before and I was familiar with the East since I grew there all my life..

Had lunch at Crystal Jade Kitchen and ordered seafood hor fun, steam pork ribs, veggies with 3 diff types of eggs and this dish had century egg which I wanted her to try! Haha.. With my influence and guidance, she ate it and did not think it was that bad. I told her that a lot of things are all in your mind and if you tell your mind it is not that bad, it wont be.

After that, we went to the Pet Shop as she bought some stuff for her pet rabbit. Then, I took her to Giant and with an adventurous mood, I took her to this durian puff/tart shop and asked for a sample. She gave us and I told Mary Beth that a lot of people do not like this and it is very strong smelling. Then, I told her that I find it sweet and bitter, and the texture is like cream puff. So, with this idea in mind, she tried and she could take it! I felt so proud of her.

Then, to pass the test, I went to this durian seller in Giant and asked for a durian fruit to let her try and Mary Beth took a little and felt it was ok. After looking around in Parkway, I drove to my mum's house to pass her my lunch leftovers and introduce her to Mary Beth. So happen, my bro was around too. So, I showed her my family members. But too bad, my dad was not around as he went for rehab.

Anyway, after tat, I showed her my house in Punggol before going to Yew tee to visit a friend with her. Her name is Angeline, CT's colleague's wife. She gave birth to a daughter few months ago and I have not had the chance to see the baby.

So, took this opportunity to go with Mary Beth since they have met each other before.

I told Mary Beth that today, I brought her to many expressways. We travelled ECP, TPE, SLE, PKE, KJE just within 4-5 hours! I was quite amazed at myself as I have not done that before...

Angeline's daughter's name is Nathanielle. We talked and ate New Year goodies. Yum.. Here is a picture of Angeline, Mary Beth and baby...

At about 6pm, I dropped Mary Beth at Yew Tee Mrt station as she didnt want to trouble me to go all the way to town again and moreover, my mum needed the car by 7pm. So, I was rushing. On the way to my mum's place for dinner, I picked CT up from Tanah Merah MRT station.

Had dinner there and then, rushed to bible study at a house in Bedok which starts at 8pm. What a busy and long day!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Rest Day

Posted by Dawn at Monday, February 06, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Sunday is our rest day as our church is on Saturday. So usually on Sundays, we would rest at home, do marketing in the morning at Punggol Plaza where they have open/wet market only 7 mins walk from my place, and at times, we would visit our families.

But today, Marianne, Joshua and baby Phoebe would be coming over for lunch. I invited them over. Cooked Yong Tau Foo, veggies with fresh scallops, braised duck and a soup. I bought the duck down at my block at Prime Supermarket as they have a small shop in the supermarket selling roast pork/char siew/roast chicken/roast duck/braised duck. I loved that store cos if I do not know what to cook, I can always buy something like that to add dishes!

Phoebe was as usual curious and running around during lunch time. She was checking things out in my house and she especially love dogs. So, she spotted my soft toy dogs all over my house and got them into the living room. Haha.

After a while, we went down to my house park. It is a nice big park. Phoebe had a own small little basketball, while CT brought the big normal one down to play. It was hot and sunny...

We also gave Phoebe some shots at the hoop...but she would just aim the ball on the floor.

The adults were playing and shooting hoops and there was a time when Phoebe saw us playing and clapped for us... so cute.

After playing a while, we went back up to our apartment to cool off. They left shortly after while Esther came at about 330pm. I was resting in bed. Esther said she would drop by to visit me. So just sat down in the living room and talked. Also watched TV at the same time as I still have my Star Movies and HBO channel. Cool!

When Esther left at about 6, I started reheating dinner. We just had the leftovers from lunch.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Day of travelling

Posted by Dawn at Sunday, February 05, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Today as usual, is our cleaning day. I am in charge of the toilets, mirrors and cleaning the dust off tables while CT is in charge of vacuuming the floor and mopping the floor-more strenous. After every washing, I will always emerge from the toilet, wet! haha..Because I get on my knees to scrub the toilet floors and clean the basin the water always splashed on my shorts and T-shirt.Anyway, I love getting wet.

After cleaning our house, we always get a sense of satisfaction. We left the house at about noontime. Took LRT and MRT to Little India station visa the North East Line. We wanted to go Sim Lim to get a hard disk for my laptop computer as the hard disk crashed when I was in US. We had lunch at Tekka Market- Hainanese Chicken Rice and Po Piah. Yum.

I love looking at the computer stuff and gadgets in Sim Lim but after a while, I do not really like it because it is crowded and messy. So, I will feel confused in that place. There are just too many shops selling the same things.

After buying the hard disk, we took a bus from Sim Lim to Bukit Timah to visit my bro, Pam and baby. They stay in "The Tessarina" along Bukit Timah Road. So, it was a straight bus down the road. Very easy. The baby was crying at spurs of moment suddenly but overall, quite quiet.We stayed there till our church service was about to start. Then, we took a bus back up to Adam Road.

What a day of travelling! Had dinner at Adam Road Food Centre, famous for its prawn mee and nasi lemak. CT and I had nasi lemak..yum yum. Unfortunately, I did not bring tissue paper. In US, I never had to really use tissue paper as the places we ate always had napkins/serviettes on the tables to take.I wish Singapore could do that..

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Lunch with friends

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, February 04, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Today, I met up with Marianne and Esther for lunch at Stamford House, City Hall. It is a small shop called "Curry Favour", serving Japanese curry. Yum. I quite like the food.

For me to get to City Hall, took me only about 25-30 mins. I took a LRT just outside my house to the MRT station. Then took a train from Punggol station to Dhoby Ghaut which is about 15 mins. Then, from Dhoby Ghaut to City Hall is very near cos it is the next stop. So, when people comment how "ulu" Punggol is, I actually feel it is not and I like where I am staying as it is away from the crowds but yet, convenient in some way.

After lunch, I went home by the same way. No bible study tonight because of Chinese New Year. But heard the group meeting at Boat Quay for dinner. CT and I wanted to rest and spend more time with each other, so we did not go.

Cooked hor fun today. My first time cooking that. Quite fun.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

accompanied dad

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, February 02, 2006 1 comments Links to this post
Today, I drove to my parent's place to return the car, had lunch and accompanied my dad for his physio at "Society for the Physically Disabled" (SPD). My mum pays for the transport to bring him there and usually it is either my mum or the maid who goes with dad. So, this time round, I sat in the van with dad to SPD.

Mum drove her car to SPD and waited for us to arrive. My mum came along as after the physio session, I would be going out with mum to settle my vocational license and dad would follow the van home alone. My mum has ordered a van for my dad so that she can take him out in future. So, this vocational license would allow me to drive mini buses. Cool cos I love to drive...

When we arrived, the physiotherapist was not around yet...but we were kept busy as my mum introduced me to all the nurses there..

Of course, I did not leave my camera at home.. This place is like a gym..very neat.

The first exercise, my dad was made to stand up with the help of 4 people. His record so far was 7 mins standing and today, with all our support, he managed to stand for about 8 mins plus.

I must say it wasnt easy to get my dad up. The physiotherapist had to pull him up while the lady helpers, including my mum had to push his buttocks and knees...

After that, my dad tries to use his arms by pushing on the bar. At one point, the helpers and physiotherapist were not using much strength as compared to previous times..and we were all so happy. My dad said he felt that his arms were aching from using it. That is a very good sign as it shows that my dad has gained more strength to his arms.

You can see from the second picture below that my dad is not leaning unto the physiotherapist body already as compared to the first picture..

After standing for a few times, he did some shoulder exercise next by lifting a stick one by one onto a ladder like thingy. Since he has no feelings on his fingers, his hands had to be wrapped up with bandage to allow him to 'hold' the stick.

It took my dad a very long while to get unto the next level. It was not easy..but whenever I see my dad performing the task, I could see his determination in his eyes.

He also played 'basketball' during physio..

The last exercise he did was just exercising his arms by rotating forward. It is like cycling but done with his hands. This machine shows the strength and speed you put my dad kept keeping his speed at 20% until when the physiotherapist said last minute to go..I could see my dad increasing strength and it went up to 50%... Seeing my dad giving his all, really thought me a lot...

I remembered when I was in the van with him to SPD, I asked him if he feels excited every time to go for physio and he said yes as it is another opportunity to strengthen his muscles. He seems to be enjoying whatever he does and I am just glad he continues to have this hope as he fixes his eyes on Jesus.

CT off today

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, February 02, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Today, CT took leave as he wanted to rest and just have a longer holiday. So this morning, CT and I went to Rivervale Mall at Sengkang to close some of our UOB bank accounts. We discovered we had too many bank accounts to keep track and rather focus on a few. After that, we took bus 27 from Sengkang to Tampines MRT. It is only about 25 mins ride in the bus.

Then, we met my mum-in-law at Bedok MRT to go to Hong Leong Bank. She needed to do some stuff at the bank with CT as it is a joint account with him. I left shortly later while they were still waiting in the queue as I needed to go buy roast chicken for my family. We would be going to my parent's place for lunch as my bro and Pam would be discharged from hospital today and they would be going there for lunch with baby Janine. It is so that my dad could see the baby.

So I told CT that I would wait at the bus interchange where 608 bus leaves. After I bought the roast chicken and sat in the bus interchange at the bus 608 stop, one old man sat down beside me and started asking me for the time. After that, I started asking him if he has eaten and whether he stays near by or not. He started opening up immediately and told me about his poor eyesight and how he has no one to talk to. He told me that he comes to the interchange area at about 5/6am in the morning and stay till late. He would have his meals here before he goes home. He said that no one ever talks to him. He also said that he is just waiting to die and even if he dies, no one would know.

I felt very sad hearing his story as I tried to cheer him up. He kept mentioning that I have made his day. He said luckily I am here today and I talk to him... Well, to me, is not luck. I seldom wait in the Bedok bus interchange and seldom open up to people and talk to them...but dunno what made me do so today... I suggested to him some things he could do, like going to a community centre or make some friends while he is here..I also shared with him that he should always think positively and started telling him about the train accident I was involved in with my family and how my dad is so positive despite not being able to move.

Then, he mentioned that because there is someoone who cares for him...He said that no one cares or bothers about him.. After that, I felt he was quite right as without family or friends in one's can be quite miserable. So, I started talking that it is not mainly about people caring for my dad that made him so is Jesus who gives us the peace and joy.

Anyway, when CT and mum-in-law came, I did not even realised as I was too caught up with talking to him.

Took bus to my parent's place and had lunch there. Met my ex-church mates who were there visiting my dad. By the time I was there, dad already carried Janine. But managed to get this picture from my brother..

Baby Janine was asleep the whole time shiok.

Anyway, after lunch, I borrowed mum's car and drove to Parkway Parade as my mum-in-law needed to put some stuff in the safe deposit box. I dropped them first before I went to find a parking lot. We went to "Giant" after that to look see and buy some stuff that we need back home.

Then, dropped my mum-in-law back at Simei and drove back home to Punggol.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Rest in Punggol

Posted by Dawn at Wednesday, February 01, 2006 0 comments Links to this post
Whenever CT has no work, we would still wake up quite early. Latest is about 8am but we usually wake up around 730am. I would prepare breakfast and then we would either head to the study room to check our emails or watch some TV.

At 1030am, we went to Doc John's place just 5 mins walk from our house. Doc John is CT's friend for quite a number of years already. He is a youth pastor cum worship leader, now serving in Prinsep Presbyterian Church.The church is actually a National Monument. Anyway, we would always catch up with his family-wife and 2 year old daughter, Aint. Even more so now since they moved from Tampines to Punggol once their contract was up. They are from Phillipines but got PR here. Doc John as you can guessed from his name that he is a medical doctor. Well, used to be...

Their daughter Aint is very cute with 2 huge eyes... She is 2 years old and can carry conversations quite well in sentences already. I remember when she was 1 year old, she could already read books. Amazing!

Anyway, after dropping by at their house, we went to Rivervale Mall at Sengkang. We walked there as there is a overhead bridge from our house across the TPE to Sengkang. Took us about 10-12 mins walk..

Went there to eat at the Food Court. We both had Jap food. I ate salmon with rice bento set, while CT had chicken cutlet udon soup. After that, we shopped at NTUC Fairprice before taking a free shuttle back home. Yes, they have a free shuttle bus that ferries people from Punggol to Sengkang and back. So, quite convenient.

So, the rest of the day, we just relaxed and spent time together 'recharging' our energy from the past few days of visiting.

Since we were at home, I have been taking sunsets of my house. Unlike US, I cannot see the whole vast sky from my house..but I am just glad I can still see a little.

This is the view as I cook, from my kitchen and some are from my living room balcony...

I love looking out of my window now and then to see what people are doing in the park and just catching sunsets...and lately, there has been a lot of wind coming in to my living room..So, it has been really nice and relaxing.

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