Friday, October 28, 2011

.: Moonblushed Tomotoes :.

Simple recipe to make a great substitute of the very expensive sun-dried tomatoes. Great in flavor, lovely in aglio-oglio, salads, sandwiches and many more...
  • 500g (about 24) on-the-vine cherry or other baby tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons Maldon salt or 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme/dried mixed herbs
  • 2 x 15ml tablespoons olive oil

Method: -

1.Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7.

2.Cut the tomatoes in half and sit them cut side up in an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle with the salt, sugar, thyme and olive oil.

3.Put them in the oven, and immediately turn it off. Leave the tomatoes in the oven overnight or for a day without opening the door.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

.: Lil Boy Turns Three :.

JohnJohn's turns three!

A bit bummed of the quality (or lack of) of the pics I took due to wrong camera settings. Arg!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

.: Adventure With WaMu :.

The adventure of Kath & Wamu!

Once upon a time, in a land far far away, there lived a girl named Kath and her pet (albeit an imaginary one) named Wamu.

Kath & WaMu loves an adventure. 
And their adventure was to travel around the world.

They went to Paris

Crossed the great wall of china

Watched Happy Feet the penguins in the North Pole.

All that without leaving the comfort of home.

Boy, what an adventure!

Ok, so it's kinda lame, but I sure would love to watch the Adventure of TinTin (and his dog Snowy) in cinema, coming soon! :) 

.: Project Casa : Financing :.

So the husband has been shopping around for the best mortgage rates by the various banks in town while daddy has graciously helped us to engage a lawyer to draft the Sale & Purchase (S&P).

The most important thing is to get the S&P done in two weeks time, if not, the 2% earnest money will be forfeited.

As far as the housing loan shopping goes, we currently have HSBC & Maybank (surprisingly) offering a competitive rate. We have eliminated OCBC as their valuation of the property is slightly lower than the former two. We are still shopping til we make our final decision.

So hence, the next few weeks will pretty busy for me. Sigh. When will this rush ever ends?
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Monday, October 24, 2011

.: A Letter To God :.

While helping up with the arts & craft at the kids Sunday School yesterday, Joel (my cute ring bearer), finished making a beautiful card.

He asked me "Who should we send this to?" even tho it's obviously addressed "To Jesus".

I just smiled and replied "Well, we can send it to God!"

He shouted in glee and then threw his card up with all his might as high as he could to the ceiling as if trying to send it to our Father in heaven.

Adorable much, no?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

.: My New Handphone :.

So like a typical Malaysian, here it goes
*clears throat*
testing 1 2 3...

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Saturday, October 22, 2011

.: Project Casa : Downpayment :.

So we have placed in the 2% earnest money today. The clock starts ticking this Monday for us to get the S&P signed in fourteen days time. So, with the high-adrenaline bit of Project Casa completed, we are left with just the paperworks & nitty-gritty details to conclude this project. This is our second investment property in our portfolio and we hope that this portfolio will continue to grow in time to come (under a different project name of course!)

Meantime, we will be launching Project Umbrella & Project Scribe alongside with the dormant Project Moo Moo.

Hopefully these two projects will be concluded as soon as possible! As for Project Moo Moo, it's the husband's forte, so I will just let him handle in for the time being.

Friday, October 21, 2011

.: Project Casa : Negotiation Stage :.

Project Casa
I, like most women, love a good bargain.
JC, like most men, couldn’t care less.

When we go shopping, especially to places where prices are not fixed, it really frustrates me that JC is willing to pay the first price quoted by the vendor. I, on the other hand, would get the satisfaction of even a RM1 discount. Ok, fine. The RM1 discount may be grossly exaggerated. But what I meant is that I wouldn’t want to pay a price that is higher than what I can get elsewhere.

So when it comes to negotiation of price, it’s usually my forte. And tho I have had some informal training from, in my opinion, the most brutal bargain hunter aka my Mom, I believe that I am nowhere near her skills, but still well within the range of a good bargain hunter.

Anyways, after a few investment props hunting escapade, we manage to secure one that is of a bargain price at a, what we believe, upcoming area. The price of this condo units have already shot up late last year, almost double it’s value from the developer’s price. Believe this price hike is driven by the proposed LRT. Amazing how accessibility to public transport (no matter how much we complain of our Malaysian’s public transportation system) can uplift the value of one’s property.

When we checked out this place, we immediately liked it and decided to place an offer to the agent the next day. After praying about it (most critical step in any decision one make), we quoted a price we believe is fair (after whipping up our NPVs & ROIs & CFSs and what not). The agent became our mediator in this battlefield, where the owner tries to yield as much as they can get and the buyer to squeeze down as much as they can afford. In the end, it was a short battle. And both party sealed the deal at a pretty much what I would call a good bargain price. JC was quite surprise that we manage to lock in at this price, coz he was, at his end, more than willing to pay slightly more. I on the other hand was more firmed with the initial price that we offered.

Now I pray that the S&P and loan securing process will be as smooth as this negotiation process.

Oh ya, and I am off to shop for a new diamond ring from the money that I will get from JC on the ‘savings’ I worked for from this negotiation (told ya I can nego, JC!) :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

.: Real Steel :.

A gritty, white-knuckle, action ride set in the near-future where the sport of boxing has gone high-tech, Real Steel stars Hugh Jackman as Charlie Kenton, a washed-up fighter who lost his chance at a title when 2000-pound, 8-foot-tall steel robots took over the ring. Now nothing but a small-time promoter, Charlie earns just enough money piecing together low-end bots from scrap metal to get from one underground boxing venue to the next. When Charlie hits rock bottom, he reluctantly teams up with his estranged son Max (Dakota Goyo) to build and train a championship contender. As the stakes in the brutal, no-holds-barred arena are raised, Charlie and Max, against all odds, get one last shot at a comeback. -- (C) Dreamworks

I loved this show and would highly recommend to all to catch it as well.

Girls, watch this because of Hugh Jackman!
Guys, watch this because your girls wanna watch Hugh Jackman! :)

Jokes aside, it is a great movie to catch! Care not to elaborate further.
Sorry, I am just too bogged down with work of late.

Monday, October 17, 2011

.: Watsons : Trade In Your Chemicals :.

Bring in your conventional skin care product and trade in for Esmeria Organic Travel facial set!

Friday, October 14, 2011

.: Doesn't Help :.

Doesn’t help that I will be having a busy day tomorrow.

Doesn’t help that I have had not had a decent sleep the past two days.

Doesn’t help that I have to work late.

Doesn’t help that I am just in a grumpy mood all day today.

Doesn’t help that I am worried sick bout the consequences of a possible mistake I’ve made.

I want to just cry!

.: My Happiest Moments :.

This is a picture of me and my then 5-year-old cousin, Rachel Tan!

I love her to bits and she can definitely make my day by her wide cheeky smile, proudly showing off her carious tooth!

I love the way she calls me Jie-Jie ever so lovingly and doting voice….

I love to have phone conversations with her, even tho the conversation doesn’t make very much sense…

I also love talking to her face-to-face so that I can see her roll her wide dolly eyes whenever I say something lame…

I love how she does cute and adorable "supermodel" poses in front of the camera…

And I also love how she sneakily tries to get chocolate, when she already has her fair share…

I also love how she, in her child-like innoncence, teaches me things I never knew and reminds me of things I have forgotten.

She is just so precious to me and being with her is one of

Thursday, October 13, 2011

.: Paint It Purple :.

The annual “Paint It Purple” campaign raises awareness about Violence Against Women (VAW) by getting a global audience to “paint” the internet purple during the campaign using social media. The campaign also raises funds for The Pixel Project, our partners and participating VAW nonprofits worldwide through cupcake bake sales and “Paint It Purple” parties. “Paint It Purple” was initially created by The Pixel Project to honour Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

However, starting from 2011, as part of The Pixel Project’s commitment to stopping all forms of VAW, the campaign will run from 8 October to 24 November which is the eve of the International Day of Elimination of Violence Against Women and the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence campaign. “Paint It Purple” is open to all VAW nonprofits, grassroots groups, bakeries and individuals supporting the cause to end violence against women.

Ten Reasons Why I Am Taking Part In the "Paint It Purple" campaign (and why you should too!)

Reason 1: It is a Cause that Impacts YOUR Life. Violence against women is not an isolated problem that only impacts the victim – it has consequences that affect the victim’s family and community ranging from health problems that affect a woman’s ability to be a mother, to millions of dollars and lost work hours faced by employers with staff facing violence. With 1 in 3 women across the world experiencing some form of gender-based violence in their lives, chances are, you already know somebody who faces domestic violence, was raped or sexually assaulted or even forced into marriage.

Reason 2: A Fun Ice-breaker for the Silence. Violence against women is a difficult issue that many people shy away from. Having a campaign with enjoyable activities can help break the silence and that is exactly what ”Paint It Purple” is all about – an ice-breaker campaign that engages the general public with lots of fun-filled activities from putting on purple parties to baking purple cupcakes to painting the internet purple with specially designed badges. (I'm going to decorate a purple cupcake this Sat, how purrrfect!)

Reason 3: Raise Funds on a Sugar High. Everybody loves a cupcake (Amen!) and having a cupcake bake sale or a cupcake party is the perfect way to raise funds. Your friends, family, co-workers and classmates will happily chow down on delicious cupcakes while handing over money for these delicious treats! (Oh I do hope so!)

Reason 4: Every Single Action Counts! (Because you can really make a difference!) Whether you pull out all the stops to host a “Paint It Purple” party, record a YouTube video in your best purple shirt or donate your Facebook profile picture to feature the “Paint It Purple” badge for a week, we’ll count you in… and your action will go towards Say NO – UNiTE Against Violence Against Women‘s action ticker too!

Reason 5: It’s Easy To Get On Board. We work hard to make it easy for anybody to get on board the cause. From auto-counting downloaded “Paint It Purple” virtual goodies to ensuring that registration forms for parties are short and sweet, we know that taking part should be simple and to-the-point. (Coz it's just so easy, there is just no excuse not to join!)

Reason 6: There’s Something For Everyone. Whether you love parties, are a baking guru, a time-starved professional, a YouTube fan or a social media whiz, chances are, “Paint It Purple”‘s got something that would suit you to a tee. That’s the beauty of this campaign – that you have a variety of ways to participate instead of just one!

Reason 7: It’s Family Friendly. With cupcakes as the star of the menu, “Paint It Purple” parties are really family-friendly as most of them are held either as brunch or tea-time events. Last year our Kuala Lumpur party had ice-the-cupcake sessions for kids and the Cardiff event had local musicians entertain the guests. This year, with our brand new “Paint It Purple” cupcake recipe gallery kicking off, you could even bake your cupcakes together with your kids, family and friends for a yummy, low-key get-together! (Hooray!)

Reason 8: Flexibility Rocks! The “Paint It Purple” campaign is designed to provide a great framework for you to get started with activism raise awareness and funds for the cause to end violence against women. We give you a few ground rules and basic support on the back-end and with online publicity. The rest is up to you. For example: You can make your “Paint It Purple” party as elaborate or as simple as you wish. You can write a short blog post or a long one. If you don’t feel like contributing a recipe, you can help us paint the internet purple instead. (there is just so0o0o many ways to contribute!)

Reason 9: Join a growing Global Community. When you join “Paint It Purple”, you’re joining a growing global community speaking out to end violence against women. Whether it’s our global chorus of voices on our Wall of Support or our “Paint It Purple” cupcake recipe gallery or our “Paint It Purple” Blog Carnival, every person who participates in the campaign is part of the greater movement to end violence against women.

Reason 10: It’s Time-Friendly. For those who are super-busy, (like myself) “Paint It Purple” offers options for action that only take a couple of minutes. Whether it’s helping us paint the internet purple or recording a YouTube PSA for us or just buying a “Paint It Purple” cupcake from your local participating bakery/cupcakery, many “Paint It Purple” activities take between 2 to 10 minutes tops.

I will be attending a "Paint It Purple" charity cupcake party on 15th Oct 2011 (this Sat) at The Academy Of Pastry Art, PJ. If you are interested for tickets, contact Ann Nunis (03-79575636) (

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

.: Egg Sandwiches :.

Humble as it may sound, I just love having egg sandwiches.

The egg sandwich has got to be one of the simplest & easiest dishes to prepare – you can even get the kids to do it!

The basic egg sandwich would involve eggs (duh!) and a slice of bread.

The eggs can be hard-boiled or fried or poached or scrambled. For bread, you can do a simple plain white or slices of baguette or toasted wholemeal bread, whatever combo that tickles your fancy.

So last night, on the way home, I thought of making some sandwiches for breakfast. We have a couple of leeks laying in the fridge, so I thought it would be great to experiment making some leek & egg sandwiches (or egg & leek sandwiches, whichever way you wanna call it). I read somewhere that leeks make a great alternative to onions albeit a less pungent one and can be eaten raw (honestly, I didn’t know that before). So while the husband put four eggs into a pot of boiling water, I took about 4 inches of leeks (from the root/bottom) and chopped it into tiny bits. Once the eggs was done and the shells peeled, I took out a mixing bowl and mashed the eggs (but not too much as I love my egg sandwiches with a lil more bite into it – but then again, its really personal preference) together with the chopped leeks. I added about a tablespoon and the half of mayonnaise (yogurt would be a great alternative too) & throw in a dash of dried mixed herbs (fresh herbs such as thyme, parsley or dill would be much better, but I have neither of those on hand, so I just have to make do with what I have). Of course, I season with a pinch of salt and a dash of black pepper. Mix the entire ingredient in the mixing bowl well.

For the bread, I used some Massimo bread, toasted on my pan (coz I don’t have a bread toaster or an oven toaster).

I spread a generous amount of eggs mixture onto a slice of toasted bread, top it up with a couple slices of moon-blushed tomatoes and voila, it’s ready to be eaten for supper.

As for the rest, I didn’t bother with toasting the bread and after packing it, I left it in the fridge. Today, I woke up with lovely cold egg sandwiches for breakfast. Yummers! What a way to start the day huh? :)

Friday, October 7, 2011

.: Seriously :.

- Oscar Wilde -

Sunday, October 2, 2011

.: Project Casa : Wait-And-See :.

And so our investment property hunting have been renamed to Project Casa. Well JC being JC-the-investment-banker, everything we do have to have a project name. So if you would recall, our house renovation was Project Castle, our wedding was Project Downhill, our Australian migration was Project Wallaby and so on and so forth.

We have identified a few locations, but still choose to be cautious given the fact that many seasoned property investors have taken the wait-and-see-approach as prices of properties are a lil bit on the high side. Also given the worldwide and local economy, it is in the view of many that the property bubble will burst approaching next year.

Meanwhile, we just have to load our mini war-chest and keep our eyes open for more opportunities.

.: My Day Today :.

It has been an eventful day.

Took part in Nuffnang's Malaysia's First Ever MasterChef Blogger competition. The 20 bloggers that took part were put to two task.

First task was an Invention Test, where the 20 bloggers are suppose to create a dish within one hour incorporating the "secret ingredient". Kyo no tema *in Kaga (Iron Chef) tone*..... CHICKEN.

No biggie right, one would think. Chicken has got to be the most versatile ingredient one can use. But under the time pressure and just being in a kitchen that is not yours together with the limited complimentary ingredients, it is not as easy as it sounds. Anyhows, after going thru some options - Sweet & Sour Chicken, Curry Chicken and even Ayam Masak Merah, I made a decision to play safe and go with Grilled Chicken in Lemon Sauce with a bed of sauted vegetables. A dish that, sadly, didn't push me to qualify for the finale as they were looking for something more creative, hence playing safe wasn't exactly a smart move.

Anyways, it was a good and enjoyable experience and I really did had fun! Competition was great and indeed the top 5 deservingly gets to make the cut. Made a new friend - Dharm, do check out his foodblog here! And yeah, I did finally get to learn how to make poached eggs. Have seen it a couple of times on TV, but never really gotten a hand on it until today, where it was part of the second task. The first attempt was terrible, the egg-white came out too runny. But the second attempt was a good (tho nowhere near perfect) poach egg, with the judges : Ryan Khang (from The Cooking House), Azlin Reza (from Astro Ria) & KY (from KYSpeak) nodding their head in approval.

(will share pics once I get a few from others as we didn't lugged our DSLR along)

When all was over, JC was hungry (and grumpy because he was hungry) and we had lunch at Bulldog Pub & Cafe. By the way, the Spotted Dick's custard sauce is absolutely delish! I heart!

I had a terrible headache and was feeling nauseated, probably still have not recovered from my flu early this week or probably from last night's drinking at The Tavern, Guinness Factory (some ICAEW City Group event). So I napped while JC drove to Avalon for us to get a lamp for our home.

Went home after, took a nap and was up for dinner and a yum cha session with my secondary school mates at our favourite Starbucks place in Uptown (we have been meeting here for the past five to six years). It's good to have finally catch up with them after months. We were planning to have our TEN YEARS reunion for SMDJ's 5 Batai 2002. Wow, seriously 10 years have passed since we left highschool. It has been that long, hasn't it? Time flies.......

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