Sunday, July 28, 2013

Minion Madness and Other Things

One of the best things to do in Penang on a lazy afternoon would be ...

Bubs's version: watch TV at Grandpa's house, mess up Grandpa's bedroom with sooo many toys and hide behind Grandpa when Mummy scolds me while Grandpa tells Mummy to just let me be a little kid.

My version: wear a pretty dress, love the cherry-and-strawberry print, carry a vintage (if it's longer than 10 years, does that count as vintage?) clutch.

Hubs's version: go for a drive in town, savour in all the sights and bask under the hot sunshine.

We spotted a cool violet wall with a metal rodwork art explaining the history of the place.

Teehee - Penang is filled with minion madness ... Look what we saw at Soo Hong Lane, a minion painted post! Heaps of people were lining up to snap a photo with it.

There are now an abundance of little cafes around the area. You've got to love this one for its catchy name Soohongry at Soo Hong Lane, geddit? :D Fairy Godma, if you're reading this, let's take a day off work and thoroughly explore this area!


On the way back to the car, I found this gem of a wall - it looks to be just vines growing on a metal grill. Look a little closer and you'll spot tiny yellow flowers and bitter gourds growing on it. That just sums up the Penang I love - filled with treasures everywhere, you just have to look closer :)

Sukhothai and Miam Miam at Gurney Paragon

I can't stop raving about Sukhothai which serves IMHO the best ever beef noodles in Penang so when I found out that they have moved shop to the new Gurney Paragon, I was overjoyed. Beef noodles plus shopping - could there be a better combination?

There weren't that many shops opened yet at Gurney Paragon, I'm still waiting for H&M, Godiva and Denbenhams to open. There's also going to be a Michael Kors. Sephora and Victoria's Secret were packed with people.

My favourite Thai restaurant. They also cook up a really melt in your mouth stewed pork rice that my Dad and Hubs love to bits.

No meal at Sukhothai is ever complete without their signature mango sticky rice with both white and black glutinous rice. Bubs polished off all the fresh mango while we were left with the rice.

Gurney Paragon
Tel: 0164387788 Joanne Ang 0164335588 CE Ang

Gurney Paragon has a Flaunt Your Feathers program going on where if you're spotted wearing feathers, you get a surprise gift comprising of vouchers. I love my peacock headband - when I was pregnant with Bubs and got bored of my limited wardrobe, it was accessories like these made my outfits go the extra mile.

They hide my tummy with a girly frill - what's not to love about peplums ;)


After all the jostling with crowds, we had a quick afternoon tea at Miam Miam, a whimsical Japanese French cafe that serves pastas, sandwiches and delish desserts. It's just next door to Ben's and they retained the gorgeous, pre-war floor tiling. I found the service to be really fast and efficient given that it was a full house.

The hot matcha latte (RM10.80) was a winner. I usually avoid green tea based beverages as I find them to be too artificial and cloying but this was really good, with the slightly grassy, full bodied green tea mellowed with the creamy, warm milk.

The vanilla souffle (RM16.80) was eagerly attacked by Hubs and Bubs who loved its comforting sweet taste and warm, eggy interior. I found it to be a little on the small side but as it was perfectly executed and not sickly saccharine, it was not too bad. Hubs found it funny that I choked on the icing sugar when I took a bite :(

I thought the matcha ogura pancake (which comes with a choice of cream of softee ice cream) was really nice, it had a fluffy and soft souffle-like pancake base topped with red bean paste, green tea jelly cubes and green tea ice cream - green tea overload, much? ;) I loved it but Hubs wasn't a fan so Bubs and I pretty much polished this off in a jiffy.

Miam Miam
St. Jo's, Gurney Paragon (right next to Ben's)

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Long Weekends Are Meant For ...

We took a day off work together to bring Bubs to the dentist. A couple of months ago, Bubs had a checkup at our regular dentist and we were floored to hear that he had 3 large cavities. Considering that we weaned him off the bottle since he was about 8 months old and have been strict with his diet, we must have failed in the brushing department :( The dentist didn't want to do the fillings as Bubs was already freaking out and suggested that we bring him to a hospital to see if they were able to sedate him before the cavities got worse. A friend recommended a child friendly dentist so we gave it a go and was pleasantly surprised.

He got to drink from a cartoon tooth printed paper cup while waiting. The dentist was so nice to him, she let him sit in the dentist chair and showed him up it went up and down, explained what all the tools were for, misted his hand with the water from the whirling thingamajig, gave him his own mirror and sunnies to protect his eyes from the glare of the light and ... played cartoons for the TV deprived kid while on the chair. That totally won his heart and he was such a brave boy throughout the fillings. After he was done, she even rewarded him with stickers. I couldn't stop thanking the dentist enough!

Keong and his little family booked a weekend at the Hard Rock Hotel so Bubs got to use the pool for a while. The pool was amazing: a rubber matted kids area with jets of water blasting out, squirting water guns, a mini flying fox ... and all the sand a kid could ever want! Even the bottom of the kids pool was covered in sand and Bubs had so much fun trying to heap piles of sand together into a makeshift sand castle.

And a totally random shot of the best breakfast for a long weekend: freshly made yogurt (once you've tried the real thing, you'll never go back) topped with chunks of dark chocolate, orange pieces and drizzled with runny honey. I like to be sneaky and sprinkle in chia seeds, flax seeds and wheatgerm for a nutritional booster for Bubs. Mmmm ...

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Hair Inspiration

image credit

I've been trying forever to grow my hair past my shoulders and just when it has reached the length for it to be called long, I saw this pretty little bob and I'm now soooo tempted to cut my hair again!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Coloured Jeans

Coloured jeans - passe? If they are, I never got the memo ;)

I love how they just add such a cheerful pop of colour into every day outfits and they are certainly FUN! I'm lucky that my office has a smart casual dress code so I've gotten away with sneaking a few pairs of coloured jeans into my work wear.

One of my most preferred colour combinations: a mint green lace tank and bright blue jeans with aqua heels. My favourite little guy is wearing his favourite Elmo tee with hand me down jeans (he is blessed with cousins older than him) and gifted Adidas sandals (thanks Aussie Godma!)

I haven't worn cutesy print round neck tees for ages but thought I could get away with a black and white cat print and salmon pink jeans. Topped it off with glittery ballet flats and a gold clutch.

Okay, I thought this combination was kinda loud but Hubs assured me that the colours were fine: a coral peplum top, lilac jeans and neon orange heels.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Long Weekend

Given that Hubs and I had crazy work schedules, the long weekend was very much welcomed and Bubs loved all the extra attention he got. We lazed around at home, took him to the park, played toys with him, it was sooo good to just recharge our batteries for a while.

CS got this magnetic animal toy set for Bubs and he is hooked onto it. It comes with a mini  whiteboard which flips over to a blackboard, an erasable white board marker, chalk sticks and a jumble of  magnetic animal pieces that you can mix and match to create a jungle scene. Bubs is such a stickler for getting all the animals done "proper-berry". When I tried to put elephant legs onto the frog, he wouldn't let me and insisted on finding the correct froggy legs.

We got another expansion set for Bubs's Ikea trains and even though Hubs refuses to admit it, I think he gets a kick out of setting it up with slopes, intersecting tracks. Bubs can sit there for quite a bit going "choo choo" as he pushes the trains along. I love to annoy him by suddenly stealing half the trains and pushing them away onto a different track ;)

We finally got the electrician to install the Ikea dandelion light. I fell in love with it years ago but the original one was far too big so when they came out with a smaller version, I jumped at it. Hubs had the unenviable task of putting all the paper petals together.

Ever since my boss raved to me about Game of Thrones (on HBO), I picked up a copy of the book and never looked back. I'm onto Book 5 now: A Dance with Dragons and reading it oh-so-slowly because it's the last book and the Book 6 isn't published yet. It's ironic that I love reading the books but don't have the patience to watch the series.

We took away Macca's breakfast and had a sort of picnic at the Youth Park. Bubs devoured the hotcakes and Hubs drank what was left of the hotcake syrup, gross. We washed everything down iced Milo so we were all on a sugar high for some time.

We brought Bubs's scooter together and he was so chuffed about that, though he was lazy and refused to kick along so Hubs ended up having to pull the scooter for him while he stood on it like a boss. Once when I was pushing him on the scooter, we hit a curb, it tipped and Bubs sprawled to the floor, Hubs gave me an accusing look and muttered something about being a terrible mum ... until it was his turn to pull Bubs and he did the exact same thing, hah! Poor Bubs ...

All three of us went tried out the reflexology path. I yelped in pain while Bubs said "it's not painful" so Hubs and I pretended to walk away fast and when Bubs tried to run after us, he shouted ow ow ow. Okay ... we're kind of sadistic.

The best place in the world for breakkie or a leisurely afternoon tea has to be at Toh Soon. Some how the world seems to slow down, the toasted bread, nasi lemak and iced coffee just doesn't taste as good anywhere else as compared to here. Bubs agrees, with two little greasy thumbs up for their buttered toast.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Beach Bums

Fairy Godma's family were staying at a hotel in Tanjung Bungah and generously offered us the use of the washroom so it was the perfect chance for Bubs to spend a couple of hours at the beach. I was surprised that the tiny stretch of sand was relatively secluded and pristine. There wasn't much litter and to my delight, I spotted plenty of seashells, yay!

There was a rocky little cove at the side where the waves were very tranquil, almost like a small lake. We spotted a bungalow that had a bridge leading out to a make shift viewing platform. Fair Godma said this was her dream house.

Hubs attempting to fly ;) It was slightly hazy in Penang during that weekend and though we had some misgivings about bringing Bubs to the beach to play, the skies at Tanjung Bunga were relatively clear.

My little beach bum as happy as a clam doing what little boys love the most: digging around in the sand, being hyperactive and getting all messy.

Fairy Godma and me. If you're curious about our relationship, we were colleagues (her cube always had the best snacks and toys) a decade ago and bonded over a mutual love for good food, good music and Calvin & Hobbes.

I bought Bubs a set of beach toys months ago but he lost all of it so we went with makeshift gear instead: a plastic bowl and a soup ladle, LOL. We tried to build a sandcastle and a moat ... which pretty much ended up as a mound of sand with seashells stuck all over the top. Bubs still had a blast though.

He was still freaked out by the sea and refused to go near it. Every time Fairy Godma tried to lure him to inch closer to the waves, I'd shout "Watch out, the sea monster's going to get you" and he'd wail as he ran away. Evil mum, much? ;)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Busy Little Bee

After reading this post about modeling beeswax, I was so keen on getting some for Bubs but was intimidated by the shipping charges on Amazon so I put that idea on the back burner for a while.

While we were at the Straits Quay weekend market, I was thrilled to find a stall that sold - lo and behold - Stockmar modeling beeswax plus a bunch of other beeswax crayons. Each bar sold for RM60 and if you get the boxed set, it works out to be cheaper. I immediately grabbed a pack of 6 colours for RM52. The stall owner was super friendly and they had a tiny kids size table and chair for children to play with the modeling beeswax and crayons, too bad I lost the name card :(

It kept Bubs occupied for some time while Hubs and I had an iced coffee and cake at Starbucks. I'm not a big fan of the colours getting messed up so I limited Bubs to only play with one block first. The wax was stiff initially, not to mention the air con there was freezing so it took quite some warming up in between our palms for it to be softer and more pliable.

Too bad the Starbucks Asian Dolce Latte is limited edition and most places have already stopped serving it :( I really like it iced.

Bubs found the beeswax to be tougher to mould as compared to play dough. I like it for precisely those reasons. Play dough tends to be a bit messy at our place and you could always find where Bubs is by following behind the trail of crumbled play dough bits that he leaves behind. Our artworks were ... well, lol, need more work on, I guess. This is going to be one fun and very portable plaything to bring along on road trips.
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