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our end-of-the-year roadtrip

Come 27 December, we will be leaving for a week-long roadtrip (our longest ever!) driving thousands of kilometres to the northern part of Western Australia. It is something we always wanted to do because we haven’t explored much of that part of Western Australia known as the ‘Coral Coast’ except for our last Christmas camping trip at Jurien Bay. Some places I am really looking forward to visiting are:

  • The beautiful landscape of the rugged outback Kalbarri

  • Getting up close to the dolphins at the World Heritage listed area of Monkey Mia

  • the must-visit Shell Beach

  • the Hamelin Pool Stromatolites
  • the Hutt Lagoon or the ‘Pink Lake’ as it is called

  • hanging out and chilling by our campsite which is metres away from the beach…bliss..

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ten days, 240 hours, 14400 minutes later…

This is our fourth year in Perth now; and we are fortunate to make at least a trip back to Singapore to visit family and friends every year. This time, however, I decided to take note of what we did, who we met and what we ate. So this is how our recent Singapore trip looked like:

Thurs – Day 1

Breakfast with Liz @ Jalan Kayu – roti prata and teh-o ice

Coffee with Liz @Forty Hands, Tiong Bahru

Lunch with Liz @ Zion Road Hawker Centre – fried fish head noodle, Nasi Padang

Dinner with family@ home – steamed fish, soup and veggies

Coffee with Becky @Starbucks, Holland Village – Peppermint Mocha Frappucino

Fri – Day 2

Breakfast @ Holland V Hawker Centre –  Mee rebus, vegetarian Beehoon, soya bean drink

Brief shopping @H & M, Orchard Road where I bought a dress and two tops

Lunch with CS’ family @ Far East Plaza – Thai food – fried fish in sweet and sour sauce, stir-fry kang kong, beancurds on hotplate, prawn omelette

Unexpected stopover at Far East Plaza where I spent almost two hours in one shop and bought six dresses in one go!

Dinner with family @ Crystal Jade, Holland Village – handmade noodles, dumplings

Coffee with Pris @ Coffee Club, Holland Village – drinks, chocolate and banana tart

Sat – Day 3 

E only – Lunch with Esther @ West Coast Mall – Japanese food – raw octopus and sashimi, sushi and fried mackerel

CS only – Lunch with Arthur @ Bugis – Nasi Padang

Attended YAYP church service at Grace 1, Tanglin Road

Dinner with Huiyi & Joey @Dian Xiao Er, Vivo City – herbal roasted duck, broccoli with mushrooms, sliced fish, double boiled chicken soup, spinach with salted eggs in broth, pork belly

Coffee with some young adults @Jimmy Monkey, Buona Vista – raspberry mint tea, chocolate molten cake

Sun – Day 4

Breakfast @Redhill coffeeshop – chee cheong fun aka steamed rice roll, glutinous rice, rice cake with preserved radishes

Visited grandma

Lunch with Rach & Hann @Ikea – chicken wings

Afternoon tea with Huifen & gang @Jimmy Monkey – raspberry mint tea, chocolate molten cake

Family dinner @home – porridge – curry, veggies

Coffee with mum and bro @Coffee Bean, Holland Village

Mon – Day 5

Breakfast with mum and younger bro@Holland V – Beehoon with spam and fried egg, fish ball noodles

Lunch with family – Japanese buffet @Kuishin.bo, Great World City

Brief time at Great World City – played arcade games with the brothers and nieces and I bought three pairs of shoes from Tangs

Visited Garden by the Bay @Marina Bay with family

Went prawning at East Coast Park with family

Brief shopping time at Anchorpoint – CS bought 2 shirts fand a pair of shoes

Dinner with family @Alexandra Village Coffeeshop – string ray, hor fun, spicy egg plants, shell fish

Tues – Day 6

Breakfast @ Holland V- minced pork noodles

Lunch with David & Yihang @Maxwell Food Centre – Chinese Rojak, Ngo Hiang, Popiah

Quick visit to Sia Huat @Chinatown – a wholesale kitchen supply store

Afternoon tea with David @K.Ki inside Little Drom store, Ann Siang Hill – iced peppermint tea and basil infushed chocolate cake

Dinner with Liz, Cheryl and Carol @Long Beach Seafood, Dempsey Road – chilli crabs, pepper crabs, veggies, rice

Wed – Day 7

Breakfast with Kieran @Alexandra Village coffeeshop – soon kueh, glutinous rice

Visited grandma

Lunch with Jon and David @Central Mall, Clarke Quay- Japanese ramen

Visited Cats Socrates @Bras Basah where I exercised lots of self-restraint and bought only a bag, three paper mobiles and a post card….

Coffee with Jon and David @Starbucks, City Hall – White Chocolate Cranberry Frappucino

Dinner with Lionel and gang @home – sukiyaki steamboat

 Thurs – Day 8

Breakfast with Ronald @ Jurong West – fish porridge, wanton noodles

Lunch with Pastor George @home – roast duck, century egg porridge

Coffee with Becky @Starbucks, Cathay Cineleisure – White Chocolate Cranberry Mocha & Toffee Nut Frappucino

Dinner with Jen Chong @Paradise Inn, 313 Sommerset – steamed pomfret, black chicken soup, wasabi prawns, veggies

Coffee with Jen Chong @Starbucks, ION – Toffee Nut Mocha Frappucino

Fri – Day 9

CS only – Lunch and movies with family

E only – Lunch and shopping with Melody@Carl’s Jr, Vivo City

Dinner with family @home – salted egg yolk butter crayfish, tom yum soup, steamed fish, veggies

Coffee with Huiyi & Joey @Starbucks, Holland V – Toffee Nut Frappucino

Sat – Day 10

Breakfast with former neighbours and the kids @Holland V – Mee Siam, Yong tau foo noodle

Lunch with Liz @ Holland V – claypot rice

Tea with CS’ family @ Terminal 1, Changi Airport – Polar pandan chiffon cake and famous curry pie

Noteworthy facts –

Unforgettable dessert – molten chocolate cake served with berry compote and vanilla ice cream@ Jimmy Monkey

Most extravagant drink – birds nest soup by mum

Best meal – Japanese buffet @Kuishin.Bo

Dish I will be relishing for a long time to come….Chilli crabs with steamed buns at Long Beach Seafood

Regrettable moment – lost my Starbucks water bottle and found out that Starbucks isn’t selling any at the moment…heart pain…

Best investment – the Ipad which made travelling on the plane a much easier task to endure – most of this entry was typed on it!

Most treasured momentos – drawings done by all our three nieces given to us

Best memories – Spending time with both our families, in particular our nieces – Ruth, Megan and Mazel

By the end of our trip, we had caught up with 47 people (families not included) over 22 catch-up sessions!

I think the photo below (taken when we took a stroll along Orchard to see the Christmas lighting) really encapsulated how I felt at the end of our trip..

arrgh…there’s a tear in my skirt!

Yesterday I woke up earlier than I usually do on Sundays to spend some time reading God’s word. I was also the emcee for church worship service later and had wanted to prepare myself for that.

I had what I thought was a good time with God. Lately, I think I am learning to read God’s word simply for what it’s worth. Not trying to “apply” it to any situation I am facing. Not trying to “read” into the Bible what it could be saying to me. Just simply reading His word for its own sake. No hidden agenda of asking God to show me direction, grant me revelation or give me signs. Not that any of these is wrong, of course. But I think I am learning to simply enjoy God for who He is as revealed in His word.

And that was what I did yesterday morning; had a great time and thought I was ready to worship God in church later. I was about to leave the house, took one last look in the mirror and that’s when I noticed a small tear at the hem of my skirt.

Arrgh…I sighed or rather, growled. “I am going on stage later and the whole church is going to notice the tear!” I debated whether I should change but time was running out, so I wore the skirt.

But honestly, I was still fretting when I got into the car. And then a prompting:

“It certainly didn’t take you very long to lose your focus on Me, did it?”

Then I realized it was just minutes ago that I thought I had a great time with God and was ready to worship Him in church later. And now I am fretting over a slight tear at the hem of my skirt.
“Don’t major on the minor” was the next thing I heard. And I had to repeat that to myself a few times while on the way to church because frankly, I didn’t ‘feel’ great.

But by the time we arrived in church, I was over it. So I decided to share that little episode with the church to encourage them to leave aside whatever may be on their mind that morning, and focus on worshipping God. Yes, I showed everyone the little tear at the hem of my skirt on stage!

God really has a sense of humour because he turned what would otherwise be a humdrum incident into a teachable moment for me.

Thrifted!

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I am a happy girl today. During my lunchbreak, I found this gorgeous glass dome cake/cheese stand in the opshop. And on my way back, I decided to pop into a secondhand bookshop to try my luck to see if I could get hold of Bill Bryson’s “At Home” and I did!

Evidence of spring- flowers from my backyard pots

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After a record-cold winter this year, I am looking forward to spring more than ever. The thing about spring is that everything seems to come to life. Wildflowers are blooming alongside the streets. There are more outdoor activities because the rain is gone. On a side note, I am feeling particularly blessed to read this news on the internet today – Perth is ranked 8th in the world’s most liveable cities. And I live there! Woohoo!

quote of the day

 

Saturday’s lunch- homemade zucchini spinach sweet potato & bacon quiche

After work – Rainbow outside our house

Flowers to chase away the wintry blues…

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