Sunday, January 31, 2010

Renovation Don'ts Part 2



You know what those are in the photos? Yupps - light and fan switches. Nice ones too - canggih clipsal branded ones. The switches light up when the switch is off, so that you can find your light switch in the dark. But then not all of them light up when off, some light up when the switch is on - err.. am not sure why.

Anyhow...  so why is it appearing in this post about a renovation don't, these being quality branded switches and all?

Try figuring out which switch is for which light or fan - it's a renovation don't because you'd probably be standing there pressing each switch on and off to get to the one that you want. Someone (not me) commented that this is a super lazy way of the architect to organise all the wiring to switches. Having heard that, I'd have to say I agree. To the architect's defense, he was being neat? bahH! I think practicality should take preference over neatness of running the electrical wires. It's actually quite annoying and typically I just end up switching ALL of them on and off. Plus, laying them out like that, leaves gaps in between the switches that could not physically be possible for it to be properly finished with plastering. This is definitely a renovation don't.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Dong Dong Chiang!!!

Snake (1917, 1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001)

Positives: Intuitive, wise, perceptive and compassionate. Snakes prefer the finer things in life.

Negatives: Lazy and extravagant. These people may have a problem of depending on others.

Chinese Astrology Horoscope for the Snake in 2010: 
Snakes may not find 2010, the year of the Tiger, especially easy. The quick and often hectic pace may be unsettling for many Snakes. The best advice is to avoid resisting change at all costs, as the more Snakes resist, the harder their struggles will be! Snakes are usually more comfortable in a Yin year and 2010 is a Yang one. However, Snakes have the ability to control or master Metal, so although the overall forecast is an uncomfortable year, it does not bring challenges that Snakes cannot handle masterfully.

I got the above from here. It's not great, but hopefully it'll just be a better year than the last. So let's wait and see. Feel like getting loads and loads of 'dong dong chiang' decor for the house - a trip to Petaling Street beckons. This year the first day of Chinese New Year also falls on the same day as Valentine's Day. So there goes my plans for something special to mark the 10 years the husband and I would have been together (not married, just since we started dating till now). 10 years = 1 decade = wah, damn long time!

Anyways, my logo for the coming festivities:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Renovation Don'ts Part 1.1

On the same point about heights of kitchen benchtops that I had posted about here ..... just driving home the point:

she climbed on a stool after her arms got tired from having 
to mix batter for cookies in a bowl on the super high benchtop
and didn't even notice that the other ppl in the backgroun
were also tiptoeing!

New renovation don't coming up soon!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Must Love Dogs

You know that romantic comedy starring John Cusack and Diane Lane?  The tagline "must love dogs" was actually included in a personal dating ad that the sister to Diane Lane's character had advertised for her in the movie.

The statement has been popping up and again in my head, well, because there are about 5 dogs currently in my life! hahaha... note: i said "my life", not "my house"because the 5 doggies are, thankfully, spread out between my house and my parents' house. Growing up, I always loved dogs, but parents never got us one when we were kids. I remember one that strayed to our house once but we didn't get to keep that doggie. So in the last 10 years of my life, have gone from zero dogs to having many many doggies in my life!

Just felt like doing a post to introduce all them 5:

Bubbles Lim

Breed: Maltese
Age: 10 years this year
Owner: She's my li'l precious
Nickname: Poochi, Old Lady, Babuji
About her: Loves to eat, will beg for food, opinionated, territorial, a little chilli padi who will pick a fight with dogs of any size but is still scared of the thunder and fireworks. Doesn't like football games on tv because the husband will usually go, "AIYO! AIYO!"- same goes for action movies.

Logan Loh

Breed: Golden retriever
Age: 1 year this year
Owner: Father-in-law's
About him: The sweetest dog who loves being patted by anyone and everyone. FIL's dog who basically lives with us in our house. During walks, he will come nudge your hand for a pat on his head while walking! Also loves being combed - will lie down at your feet as soon as you have the comb in your hand. He looks a bit moody in this photo though but maybe he's bored most of the time having to entertain himself.

Gracie Lim

Breed: Golden retriever
Age: 2 years this year
Owner: Brother + sister-in-law
About her: Very well interacted and smart dog although always needs your attention all the time. Always whines, for some reason, especially if she's been left alone in the house for a while. Between Logan and Gracie - she is the more dominant one. Otherwise, she's a great dog for my dad, because she will keep coming back for more no matter how much he wrestles her, pushes her away, kacau's her - unlike Bubbles.

Buddy Lim

Breed: Maltese mix poodle (we think - he was suppose to be a maltese puppy!)
Age: 9 years this year
Owner: My parents (although he's more like my parents' maid's dog)
About him: Poor fella was sick from the time he was brought back home and now has early onset of cataract in his eyes (he's pretty blind). But the sweet fella still finds his way around the house and will come for a scratch at his chest when I'm in the house :). Spends most of the day sleeping and plays hide-n-seek with the maid.


Breed: Terrier mix
Age: should be 1 year this year
Owner: not sure (maid brought her home from her friend who didn't want her anymore)
About her: read all her background here, here and here. She's gotten much better with us, the people folk. Will come greet and go into a playful-please-scratch-me pose now. She's a cutie and quite smart too although she's a bit rogue-ish! She needs a bit of training cause she's a little rough around the edges and is on a biting/chewing spree. But can't blame her - she's got no toys to keep her entertained! She doubles as a good pretty good guard dog too - have seen her bark really loudly at strangers who pass by the house.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Home Made Indonesian Rojak Sauce

I love rojak! all types really - Penang (with the prawn paste sauce), Indian (with the kari sauce) and Indonesian (gado-gado with the peanut sauce). I'm not sure what it really is with me and rojak, although I do remember when I was younger, and even now, my parents used to takeaway Penang rojak and we would sit around the table all digging into the rojak. They tapau-ed both the Penang and Indian style rojaks.

So, actually it's not just me, but what my whole family who has this love for rojak :). It is even more special because the husband does not share the same enthusiasm for rojak *yawn*. He does not understand why on some afternoons, one needs to drive out into the hot Malaysian sun looking for rojak to eat *bleah*. Anyhow, I recently found out that Indonesian rojak sauce, no, not the gado-gado type, is actually like the Penang rojak sauce, but without the prawn paste. I mentioned it to my maid one day and she said she could make it! (have I ever mentioned that she's heaven sent?) Indonesian rojak sauce was ideal for those who wanted the same taste but didn't or couldn't take the prawns.

It's mainly made with sambal, tamarind and gula melaka for that thick goo-ey spicy sweet yummy sauce. So, I stepped into the kitchen just the other day to kepoh what she was cooking and she said ROJAK SAUCE :). I was delighted as I had just been thinking of asking her to make some to try.

Here's the finished product:
home made Indonesian rojak sauce - super yum! pictured here with pieces of pomelo
(looking at the pictures now make me salivate for some rojak sauce already)

Conclusion: was good and it ranks on the 'will-make-you-cry' end of the spicy scale but shiok nonetheless... eating it is somewhat akinned to some form of sado-masochistic torture, cause you are in some sort of pain with the spiciness (guarantee you will not stop hissing), but yet you keep wanting more. Have put aside some for S to try so that I can get her verdict, but she has yet to find some time in her busy schedule to pick it up or for me to drop it off at her place.

▲ the ingredients for sambal which maid 
also made on the same day - no picture of 
ready-to-serve sambal but that is yummy!

PS - oh yes - my maid makes gado gado sauce from scratch too! that might make its appearance on another post!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Making You Fross All Day!

Chilli Pork Fross
Making you Fross all day!

hahahaa.... but this is seriously good - it's super spicy chilli pork fross. the spice doesn't quite last all day but I could eat the fross all day.

I've had it toast with strawberry jam with chilli pork fross - it's damn good!

ok - in case ppl were wondering, i do know it's suppose to be "floss" la!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Renovation Don'ts 1

Thought this may be a good series to start writing on. Will see how much material I am able to come up with.

Just a disclaimer to anyone who actually reads my stuff or stumbles across this, I am no architect, nor an interior designer, nor any sort of home stylist (other than my own)... just someone who cares to notice and observe details. I have done 1 house renovation of my own, observed a rebuilding of a bungalow, and seen the transformation of a couple of friend's houses. This series also work kinda as my mental notes for future projects.

So, here's a very important renovation DON'T:

Please make sure your kitchen benchtops are the suitable height for your own use, ie, not too high nor not too low. Although the latter may not cause too much problems, as it couldn't possibly get way too low, unless your contractor or architect or ID is a midget, or short person (what's the politically correct term?) and designed the height for himself. But this is what will happen if it's too high:

standing on a stool to cook!

Make sure you allow your kitchen cabinet heights to include any concrete slabs and final finish layer, ie such as granite, or solid surface or watever it is u are using. And then the height of stove (in the picture above a temporary fire stove is pictured, which is about 4-5cm in height?) and then height of the pot holder, the bit that  (is that wat it's called? which added another 2-3 cm)

▲ thought this height worked pretty well for a temporary stove,
allowance of about a 5" drop, height of higher bench is about 33" from the floor

disclaimer: am sure there are international standards or standards that work for Malaysians, but dunno what that is - not saying this is it! 

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The New Chippendales

Try JibJab Sendables® eCards today!

Dainty Cupcake

Walked past this little stall (think they are called Dainty Cupcakes) on the Groud floor of the now-revamped Parkson (next to Sg Wang) a few times. Thought the cupcakes looked okay enough to try and they were only selling for RM2.60 each.

So today, as i walked past it to get to lunch, I decided that I would try it for a little bit of a sweet treat after my lunch. And as I approached the stall, I saw handwritten signs that said, "Edible Cupcakes Sold Here" and "Real Cupcakes".... I thought to myself, erm.. okay... should I be worried? For their benefit, I am guessing it's probably because it's quite an odd place to be selling cupcakes, as the other stalls sell non-food items and more than one passer-by must've asked if the cupcakes were edible.

Here's the chocolate with vanilla icing one I got

Conclusion: It was edible.

But the icing tasted nothing like the Cupcake Chic ones that am used to having. At least the cake itself was soft, and not hard. Okay, I know I shouldn't have expected anything close to Cupcake Chic's cupcakes... but it's hard not to compare it to that.

So, satisfied my curiosity - Yes.

Satisfied my craving for something sweet after lunch - Yes.

Would I go back again - No.

Now, I just hope it doesn't give me a stomach upset or anything like that. please.

▲ Red velvet (front), peppermint (left back) and oreo (right back) cupcakes
from Cupcake Chic

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Lunch was....

 a Prosperity Burger!

Had nobody to lunch with today and sis suggested this for lunch, because she was busy chowing one down as we spoke on msn!

hahaha... I must say, it was definitely good... just the right amount of spice from the black pepper sauce! Well worth the walk over to McDonald's in Sungai Wang. Made sure I went over slightly later than the lunch crowd and sure enough, it was a breeze with no queue. :) I had a brief cheesed-off moment when the girl behind the counter ushered some other ladies who were waiting to my left in front of me, but then she gestured to serve me right after that. So all was well, and I was my nicest, sweetest, most pleasantest polite self with her. :)

▲ Also made sure I got some curly fries

Didn't have a camera and was too busy wolfing down the burger and fries that were topped off nicely with an ice milo to think about photos at that stage... so had to go look for pictures on the internet. The photo of the curly fries was courtesy of the guy's name on the picture that you see... Thanks, dude! Nice pic!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year....

Hopefully.... *fingers crossed*

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