Thursday, March 29, 2018

#JCSinBKK 2018 [Bangkok Trip ' 18]

My first trip of 2018, I went on a all moms' trip with two mums who were strangers-turned-friends from the blogging community. I felt that this is indeed a bonus for a stay-at-home-mum like myself to be able to connect with other mums who have the same passion and widened my network of friends instead of just being alone, dealing with the kids only for this lifetime. I feel the need to make effort to connect with friends, build and keep the beautiful friendship going.

Bkk Kakis Jenn, Cynthia, Me

It is a double bonus with a really supportive other half who is always so encouraging. To be a SAHM is a choice, I made that choice because I have expectation of how my kids are going to be raised. So the best will be to look after both myself so as not to strain any relationships if they should be under the care of my own mum, my inlaws or even others.

At times, I do have my meltdown moments when I felt like a complete failure when the kids just did not behave or learnt their lessons despite the umpteen times of reminders, nagging and scoldings. At times when Don felt the need for me to go on a trip to recharge, he will ask me to go find a few friends, take a break out of the usual routine and get myself recharged. Hence, this was how this trip came about.


Long story short, let me just start on sharing our trip! "After You Dessert Cafe" was our first stop at Central World, this is a must whenever I made my visits to Bangkok.


It was our first stop for the day after touching down, you have to give Mango Glutinous Rice a try!


It was just like Mango Sticky Rice with chunks of mango and glutinous rice buried beneath a coat of mango shaved ice. Looks very sweet ? But nope, I find that it blends well with the rest.


We ordered Ferraro Toast as well and boy, these two desserts kept our tummies really filled for the evening.



However, you can give the Mango Frappe a miss, it paled in comparison if I put it side by side with the one I ordered from YenlyYours. (read below)  The two-tone Kakigori remained as my favourite. The other outlets I have tried before are located at Siam Paragon and Siam Square.


After You Dessert Cafe
Central World
999/9 Rama 1 Road, Khwaeng Pathum Wan, Khet Pathum Wan, Krung Thep Maha
Nakhon 10330, Thailand 
3rd Floor
Opening hours: 7 am - 7 pm daily

YenlyYours is another must-go if you want to indulge yourself in the variety of mango desserts, slurpping mango shaved ice with real juicy mango cubes filled with nice and sweet mango juice when you sink your teeth in.



Don't forget their Mango Sticky Rice, it was really fragrant and I dare say, it was one of the best among those I have tried before.


Mango Mochi 

Big chunk of mango cube was wrapped within. It did not taste too sweet, another must try.


YenlyYours
Central World, 7th floor
2 branches;
In front of Tops supermarket and Nara restaurant

The remaining branches are as follows:
- Central Pinklao, G floor
- Central Eastville, 3rd floor
- Central Rama 3, G floor
- Central Rama 9, 6th floor
- Central Westgate, 1st floor
- Siam Center, 2nd floor
- MBK, 6th floor (Food court zone)
- Emquartier, B floor (next to Swensens)
- Mega Bangna, g floor
- Don Mueang Airport, 4th floor Terminal 2

If you are heading to Siam Square, After You Dessert Cafe has another branch there. You can head over after your meal if you are going for Somboon Seafood for their famous fried curry crab. But I did felt a dip in their standard as compared to the last time I dined there.


We ordered the Orh Jian ( Oyster Omelette) too and surprisingly the oysters were really fresh that I took a few even though I do not usually take them.


Somboon Seafood
4th Floor
Siam Square One Building Rama 1 Road,
Patumwan, Bangkok 10330
(BTS Siam Station)
Tel: 02-115-1401-2
Opening hours: 11 am - 10 pm

The first night, we headed to Talad Rot Fai Night Market. Basically, most of the stalls sell repeated stuff. Well, I left there empty handed but did had some chitterlings and grilled pork sticks as light snacks as we were all still feeling full from the earlier desserts. Conclusion, try not to have anything filling before you head to the night market otherwise you would be missing out on the massive variety of food there!


Kids probably may love these cute pancakes but with loads of colourings is a no-go for me.

Handcrafted pancakes

Rainbow cheese toast, looks pretty but no-go for the tummy as well.

Pretty toast with rainbow cheese 

The New Rot Fai Market Ratchada
Ratcadaphisek Road (Cut through Esplanade Shopping Mall to reach the market) 
MRT : National Cultural Centre
Opening hours: 5pm - 12 Mn (Thursday - Sunday) 

Second morning before we headed to Chatuchak Weekend Market, breakfast was at Soi 19, SabX2 Wanton Mee. My first visit there though I had visited Bangkok thrice. Portion of Wanton Mee was probably just nice for my intake though alot of reviews were saying it was expensive to pay for that small portion at 100 baht per bowl. Anyway, it's a typical tourist spot, concept of space is similar to that of cafes in Hong Kong, the eat-and-go concept and yes, be expected to share tables too.


Overall, I find the noodles on the dry side, no doubt that I liked that they were thinner than the normal "mee-kia" , the pork lard and shallot oil made it stood out from the usual wanton mee. We ordered the braised trotter as well as a mixture of chitterlings which were quite tasty, could be better if it was less saltish.


To my surprise, my Bangkok kakis are fans of this too!


It is always nicer to have people share the dish than to eat it alone. Overall, it is good to try if you do not mind paying for that price which most considered it on the high side for a roadside coffee shop and to queue not more than a 20 mins to get a table. Attitude of the staff, I feel that they were pretty alright based on the experience from both visits. 

Hmm... there seemed to be some inconsistency, first visit we did not get any crab meat toppings but got it on the second visit.


Sabx2 Wanton Mee
Phetchaburi 19
10400 Bangkok, Thailand

Chatuchuk Weekend Market also known as JJ Market, was next on the list. It can be reached by either taking BTS  (Bangkok's Mass Transit System) and alight at Mo Chit (last station on the line) or you can take MRT, alight at Kamphaeng Phet or Chatuchuk Market. 



Lunch was done at Toh Plue Restaurant within Chatuchak Market and had our first Tom Yum Goong for the trip. I have visited this restaurant during my last visit to Chatuchak with the kids, it is air-conditioned, has wifi and serves pretty decent thai cuisine. I loved how they make it more welcoming by asking where we were from and to our surprise, the dishes served have the little flags to represent where we came from. Pretty interesting to look around our table and find people who came from all walks of life.


Tom Yum Goong

Something to spice up our appetite from the sweltering weather.

Spicy Mango Salad

I love the concept of presenation but scooping out may not be as easy as via the horizontal opening.

Pineapple Rice

Overall, this is good to visit if you are planning to take a break from all the shopping. Other than that, no necessity to intentionally plan a trip down to Chatuchuk Market just to try.

Toh Plue Restaurant
Section 27 of Chatuchak Market.
Operating hours: 8.30 am to 7 pm (Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays)

Third day, breakfast was at Macdonalds, trying out their new menu before we made our way to Yaowarat to stock up on the kids' schooling needs.


We fuelled up with Nai Ek Roll Noodles (aka kway chap) which was rated one star Michelin. I loved the pig blood pudding and stomach in the peppery Soup !


The sio-bak (crispy) pork was really crispy even in soup! Worth a visit if you are in the city !


Nai Ek Roll Noodles 
442 Soi Yaowarat 9, Samphanthawong, Krung Thep
Operating hours: 9 am- 12 mn

This is my fourth visit and I just got to try Noodle boat. Take BTS and alight at Station Victory Monument. Walk the roundabout overhead bridge until you see a river with a stretch of shophouse at the back, take the steps down and you will reach a stretch of Boat Noodles shops.

We read that the shop with staff wearing Orange Tee was the best. Walk by the side of the first Noodle boat shop (River on your right), walk all the way inwards and you will reach the shop we went to at the end. Do not expect it to be an instagrammable place, nothing fanciful just a shop where you can slurp down bowls of noodles in miniature size.



I always wonder why and how people could eat up to a stack of 10 bowls. I got my answer finally and I think visually, the mini portion works great for people like me who will feel full even without eating should a big bowl of noodles or rice is served to me. 

For only 10 baht per bowl,you can choose among: 

Beef Noodles

Spicy and sour noodles

Yong Tau Hu Noodles

Pork Noodles 

The fishballs were simple yet nice! We felt that they were made more using the fish meat and starch is minimal. Dip them into the chilli and pop them into your mouth! I love the springy texture! 

Simple and nice fishballs 

That was how much we could eat as we took some desserts before this and saving some space for other food after this.


Cynthia has kindly brought us to the world's fourth best market, Or Tor Kor Market. You can make a trip to this local market for local some fresh produce if you have extra time. Good place to get mangoes if you are a fan of them, I spotted tourists getting the manoges nicely boxed up in cartons for check-in. I bought some Chye-po, hae bee hiam, tom yum paste and some Chiang Mai garlic which were much more fragrant than the China ones sold in NTUC.




Or Tor Kor Market
Kamphaengphet Road (Opposite Chatuchuk Weekend Market)
Operating hours : 7 am - 5 pm (Daily) 
MRT: Kamphaeng Phet (Exit 3 leads you directly to the market) 


Last but not least, if you have been reading this viral post on FB about Phoenix Lava (Durian Lava Bun), let us just help you to save your time and effort to hunt for it. It is totally not worth the effort in our opinion to seach for it. If you are a hardcore durian fan, you can skip this. My review, sorry to disappoint those who may be craving for it. This is confirmed OVERRATED. The bun was not as soft, the filling was pretty sweet and slightly saltish to taste and probably durian flavoring was used. Good to try but not worth the effort to go search for it if you are not near to any of the malls that sell it. #Nothingtoraveabout #wastecolories




Foot Massage
As for massage, so many to choose from right? There was one shop that we went just a few shops away from where we stayed (Glow Pratunam). Yee Heng Thai Massage and Spa, the technique was better than the one we went for in the hotel which was more pricey (pay for ambience). At Yee Heng, we paid 250 Baht for a 60 mins foot massage which was inclusive of a bit of shoulder massage and I loved those heat packs that they used to gently pound along the sides of the spine and on the shoulders at the end of it. If you can do it during their happy hours, it costs only 200 Baht !

Yee Heng Thai Massage and Spa
703/11 Phetchaburi Road, Khwaeng Thanon Phaya Thai,
Khet Ratchathewi,
Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10400, Thailand

I thank Don for taking leave to babysit the kids while I came back more recharged, better mood to handle the coming semestral exam.



There was no cat fight among these three women with different habits, staying together in one room for the 5 days. I am thankful that the trip was made pleasant with accomodating each other, understanding each other more and looking out for one another during the 5 days in Bangkok. Thanks Jenn and Cyn for being such great travel companions, till the next trip!

#JCSinBKK

Thank you for reading and do share with me if you have any recommendation on food and places to go to in Bangkok. There are my previous trips to Thailand and hope it is useful to those of you who may wish to plan a trip:
- Bangkok 2015 

- Khao Yai 2016 Day 1 
- Khao Yai 2016 Day 2
- Khao Yai 2016 Day 3

We have a giveaway coming out just to share our happiness from the trip. So stay tuned! If you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram !

Disclaimer: This trip is sponsored by my very nice and supportive husband, Don. All other expenses are fully paid from our very own pockets and all opinions above are of my own.  

Thursday, March 22, 2018

APS 12th Junior Squad Meet 2018

It has been 5 years plus from when we signed him up to take on swimming, looking back on his trial in Nov 2012. The thoughts of Xav being in the competitive team was never on our mind as our initial intention to enrol him to learn swimming was to help him outgrew his quarterly wheezing when he was a preschooler. Indeed it helped, he no longer needs to go back to the ENT specialist for review, weaned off singulair (he had to take a pill daily and he took for 3 long years) and he has outgrew his childhood asthma with changes made to his lifestyle, diet and oiling by the age of 6.

He took part in APS Swim School Novice Swim Meet 2013 for the fun of it and progressed up to Stage 8 (Endurance) over the years. In the midst of Stage 8, he was given the opportunity to attend cross-training to see if he could make it into joining the competitive team. He did not make it eventually but he did continue to swim and train.

After a period of 9 months, he was then again given an opportunity to join the competitive team based on his good attitude as recommended by his former coach. I told him to grab hold of every opportunity that comes knocking on his door and go ahead and give it a try if he is keen.

11th April 2017, he joined BlueSky Team officially. Since then, the pool became his third home. Every Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday evenings, at times on Sundays, he will be at the pool for his training. So far, I have not sign him up for any competition or national time trial yet as I feel that he still got to train harder, it is still a long way for him.


This year, we encouraged Xav to give a go for butterfly and backstroke event for the junior squad meet. These two are his weaker strokes as compared to Freestyle and Breast Stroke. He dreaded Butterfly stroke especially as I recalled him struggling halfway during last year's meet.


Initially, when he got to know we submitted the registeration for Butterfly stroke as well, he went "huh, I'm really bad at it...... " But we were glad to know that he was willing to challenge himself this year. We told him, it does not matter if he is weak, he just need to give his best at it. No matter what, finish the race and I think he did much better as compared to last year. 


Boys 9-10, 50 LC Butterfly, timing 01:16:28 (Third lane from the last )  


Boys 9-10, 50 LC Meter Freestyle, timing 00:48:23 (Second lane from last lane) 


Boys 9-10, 50 LC Meter Breast Stroke, timing 00:58:34 ( Third lane from the last) . 


Boys 9-10, 50 LC Meter Backstroke, timing 00:58:04 ( Second lane from the last) 

Well done, my boy ! We see that you took on the challenge and outdone yourself. Always remember not give up. It is alright not to be the fastest but keep on working towards breaking your own personal best, that will always be the goal for you. We know that it is not easy and it can be tiring (late dinner and lights out timing is delayed by an hour and you have to wake early for school the next day) but you are coping well! We did not hear you lament about the tedious training, keep it up and enjoy your swimming journey! Daddy, Mummy and meimei will give you our fullest support!



Tracking his swimming journey:
1. APS Novice Swim Meet 2013 
2. APS 11th Junior Squad Meet 2017 

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

"Above and Beyond" - The Ultimate Interactive Exhibition @ Science Centre Singapore

We kicked start our holiday programme at Science Centre Singapore and decided to take to the skies first at "Above and Beyond" - The Ultimate Interactive Exhibition brought to you by aerospace leader - Boeing. If your little ones do have a keen interest in aviation, bring them here!


Ready to take off ! Hope on with me for a mini tour !


Full Throttle is one of the activities which allows one to apply the aerodynamics principles to design and test their very own virtual flight in space! Probably too profound for the young ones to comprehend but with just a few tap on the touch-screen, Xav designed and built his own supersonice fighter get and went on full throttle in a virtual high-speed competition against other virtual crafts.

Play around with the different specification and see observe how it can make a difference in the performance of the jet fighter. This is a win for all, the kids especially!


Space debris and their potential hazards to other functional space crafts and through games, the kids get to help to clean up the space junk.




It is never too young to introduce though Vera may not understand the history of flights, she was tapping onto the screen with curiosity, looking at every single image that appeared.


If you have dreamt and wished of travelling to the earth's orbit. Here's a chance to step into the Space Elevator of the future! Be pampered with those breathtaking digital display coupled with a virtual tour guide to make it an engaging tour.


Xav and Vera, both "transformed" themselves into virtual birds. Go on, flap your wings, sore and explore the forces of flight!


This is how they soared.

What's for this March holidays? We almost spent a day @sciencecentresg With so many exhibits to explore and play around with! Bringing you to Above and Beyond for our first stop. . My budding pilot designed and flew his own supersonic fighter jet and go on full throttle in a virtual high-speed competition! Play around with the different specifications and see how they make a difference! . Xav and Vera transformed themselves into virtual birds! This is a sure hit with the kids with the motion sensing technology. Go on flap your wings, soar and explore the forces of flight! . And the kids could be the space heroes! Help clear up the space debris and if you have also dream about travelling to the earth's orbit. Here's your chance to step into the #SpaceElevator of the future! With breathtaking digital display coupled with a virtual tour guide, the tour was made engaging for all of us. There is something for everyone, even Vera was happily tapping on the touch screens to look at the images of the flights from the past to now. . If you have not visited "Above and Beyond", The Ultimate Interactive Flight Exhibition currently running till 8th April 2018 in Hall C. Admission to Above and Beyond is free (Admission to Science Centre Sg applies) . #Aviation #Boeing #AboveandBeyond #Aerodynamics #Exhibition #Singapore #ScienceCentreSg #Science #Space #Spacecraft #Planes #Nasa #Flight #Technology #ExploreSingapore #Asia #ExploreSg #Kidsfriendly #Kidstagram #Sgkids #FamilyFriendly #Funforkids #Education #Marchholiday #TermBreak #Schoolsout #Sporemombloggers #Sgmom #Sgparentblogger #mediainvite
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The Ultimate Interactive Flight Exhibition "Above and Beyond" is currently running till 8th April 2018 in Science Centre Singapore, Hall C. Cost is free (Admission to Science Centre Singapore applies) 




Professor Crackitts Light Fantastic is another highlight! We spent a good 20-30 mins in the mirror maze. It was pretty fun to try to figure out which is a mirror and which is not and to search for that exit which looks all the same.


How timely it was for me to introduce more to Xav on the effect of concave and convex lens and how the reflection and effect looks like. For a concave surface to function like a mirror, unlike the flat mirror, the objects were inverted when reflected. As we moved our hand in, the reflected image seems to grow and made it looked like as if we had another hand to shake. Pretty interesting!


The mirror maze, do not be like Vera who got so excited to count how many Vera(s) there were around her, ran straight into one of the mirrors and ended with a loud bang. Thankfully, it was just a reddened forehead which went off after a while and the mirror did not crack.


We had a great time trying to locate the images reflcted around us as well as locating the real exit,  what we saw may not be the exit we were looking for. Please do remember to get one from the staff if you are going into the maze, it is supposed to be used for tapping around to determine if there is a mirror right in front or beside you, to assist in finding your way out without banging into the mirrrors. 



Shadow does not only come in black!  Find out how many more other colours you can create with the Dynamic Chromatological Shadow Splitter !

Dynamic Chromatologic Shadow splitter

Next, we went to Phobia2: The Science of Fear. If your child is uncomfortable with dark places, then you may wish to skip this. I think this is more suitable for older kids and adults. However, I was not comfortable plus with Vera who was not a fan of dark places when we reached the last section. I wished Don was with us and he could lead Xav in. We ended up skipping the last section for lunch.

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Dialogue with Time - Embracing Aging

A different zone from the rest of the exhibits, where Senior guides (retirees) were the ones personally facilitating the dialogues. I feel that this zone was unique, through the different stimulation, youngsters can experience and have an idea through experiencing the various section and learn to be more emphathtic towards the elderly in terms of their hearing loss, shaky hands, blurred vision and poor

Suitable for all age to visit but probably kids 10 and above may engaged better during the discussion. Xav could follow through quite well and I loved how real they stimulated the real-life losses faced by the elderly as they aged.


Having a feel of why elderly folks tend to walk slower with some weights added onto his feet. 

@ScienceCentreSg #DialogueWithTime A zone which is unique on its own, facilitated by Senior Guides who are retirees, bringing us through short discussion on how we perceive aging. Probably older kids like Xav age will be more suitable for discussion and to voice his views. Personally, I think this zone is really well done to allow all ages to learn and know what comes along with aging, the youngs and youngsters to learn to be more empathetic towards the elderly. Shaky hands, heavy legs, blurred vision, poor hearing comes along as we aged, we got a feel of it through the exhibits. When asked how would we like life to be when we retire, Xav said he will love to be surrounded and soak in the company of his family members and added that to him, Family is important and always the best to him. While I chose to travel and see the world with my other half since half of my lifetime is committed to looking after the both of them and hardly have couple time with my old man. By retirement age, I wish to have more time with him πŸ˜„ #ScienceCentreSg #Science #Education #Singapore #Exhibition #EmbraceAging #Aging #VisitSingapore #ExploreSg #Sgkids #Kidstagram #Shakyhands #AgingLoss #Sg
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What happy aging means to us? I chose the picture below. I hope I could tour the world with the company of my other half when I retire since half of my lifetime would probably be committed to looking after the duo.


Xav chose to be surrounded by family when he retires as he shared that he would like to have his family with them everyday. Do set aside more time for this zone.


The Mind's eye, one of the kids' favourite as their senses get challenged and teased with the illusions from the different ways of looking at it. We gave this a miss as we had previously covered during our last trip.


With tonnes of activities to explore and play around with, be warned, you may need to plan a full day out at Science Centre Singapore to have all the fun with the family!

Science Centre Singapore 
15 Science Centre Road
Singapore 609081
Tel: 64252500

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on : 
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