Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Nosey Mozzie

Was kept up by an irritating mosquito last night. I saw it flying about minutes before I went to bed but by the time I had my trusty electric racquet in hand, it was gone and out of sight. Tried looking for it but to no avail. And then I got tired and just went to bed by midnight.

2 hours later... I woke up scratching. I had EIGHT mosquito bites!!! WTH??? An hour after that, I was rudely awakened by an annoying buzzing near my ear. Stupid mozzie was taunting me in the dark!! Presumably saying in his mozzie tongue, "Catch me if you can, suckerrrr!!!"  >(

After that, I just couldn't fall back asleep. So, at 5am, I finally got up and out of bed, and decided enough was enough. It's time this mosquito paid the ultimate price for his pesky wrongdoings. WITH HIS LIFE. >( NO MERCY!!! >( >( >(

*cue dramatic killer scene music*

I hunted him down in the dark of the night
and slayed (read: electrocuted) the winged beast
with a swift sweep of my trusty yellow racquet.
(Saw him resting, all fat and heavy at the edge of a chair.)

And then, just to be a hundred percent sure that this was the mozzie that was biting me all night, I squished it for evidence of my blood. And true enough...

Pictures taken at 5.24AM with Easy-Macro™.


 Last night's victory cry after murder.

Sweeeeeet indeed!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Missing Christmas

I'm at home, sitting upstairs, in the study, right next to the balcony, sweating like a pig, and melting from the supreme heat of our tropical noon-day sun, when all of a sudden...

...I miss Christmas. =(


I've come to realise that Christmases have somehow
become significantly less Christmas-y for me over the years. :-/

Maybe it's cos I've stopped downloading music. (That includes downloading Christmas tunes to celebrate the season, too.) Heck, maybe it's because I've pretty much stopped listening to music altogether. I used to listen to music whenever I drive. Now, I sometimes drive in silence when I'm alone; and when The Husband's in the car with me, there's even less reason to have the radio (or any other music, for that matter) on.

I used to wake up to song and go to bed with it, too. But that was back when I was flying solo and living it up on my own in a rented room. That's how my housemates knew I was awake, alive and kicking. Haha. But when you've got someone else in the room to talk to, you tend not to resort to music for entertainment or comfort. Plus, it gets difficult settling on music that both can enjoy. (The Husband and I don't always have the same taste in music. I personally think my taste is better. =p)

Also, I think singletons tend to have more fun Christmases. My housemates and I used to put up our tree together (we had a teeny-tiny 1ft tree – HARHAR), string lights around our staircase banister/railings, put presents under the tree (for exchange of gifts), and blast Christmas songs MONTHS before Christmas arrived. It was all very fun, light-hearted, cheery and celebratory.

Christmas celebration at the time was something for us to look forward to amidst the truckload of assignments and boring college work we had to deal with. It also served as a final get-together for all the housemates (who were also friends) to round up the year before we said our 'goodbyes' and return to our hometowns till next year came around.

I miss those times. And I miss having my "Christmas song of the year" to turn to. You know, I used to prepare a whole Christmas playlist before Christmas and have at least one of the tunes on repeat on iTunes till way past the new year. Now, I don't even have a single Christmas tune in mind for 2012 yet! In fact, what did I listen to during the Christmas of 2011? I have no idea. -_-''' The last time I had a "Christmas song of the year", it was 2010. Sigh. Too long ago, too long ago.

Ok, this is getting depressing.

Excuse me for awhile, folks.

I need to go find a Christmas album
to download NOW. Catch ya later.

A Starbucks Surprise

I'm not a fan of Starbucks. I only ever visit it when Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (CBTL) isn't available, or when I feel like putting my HSBC credit card 10% Starbucks discount to good use. *snorts* Other than that? Nope. Always CBTL for me.

Until last week.

Was at Gurney Plaza for some last minute necessity shopping when Mama mentioned she had a birthday voucher for 2 free drinks and 2 cakes at Starbucks. Not a fan, but... when it's free, WHY NOT, RIGHT??? Hahaha. #classicPenangitementality So off we went to Starbucks to grab a quick (and free) tea before moving on with our errands.

I ordered a Tiramisu. It looked like
my best bet out of all the cakes available.

It was disappointing. Dry and not very Tiramisu-ish. :-/
Ritz Cakes & Pastries still sells the best kind, if you ask me.

But that isn't why this CBTL fan is blogging about Starbucks. You see, I asked the barista for "an ice-blended drink with no coffee" and he suggested a coffee-free vanilla ice-blended. @_@ SAY WUD??? Isn't that a... a... a... PURE VANILLA???

And so it turns out, it totally was!

How come I never knew??? Ok, fine. In my defense, it wasn't even on the menu to begin with. (Why not??) But still! OMG, I've been missing out! (Not really, I always had CBTL's version of the same drink. =p)

I also extra love the fact that it's also generously topped with whipped cream like it is at CBTL. At least now I won't have to moan and groan whenever my friends call the shots and decide to meet at Starbucks. Haha. Pure Vanilla FTW! Woo hoo!

p/s: After thinking about it a little, I may just jump ship to Starbucks instead of CBTL after this cos I get 10% off there thanks to my HSBC credit card anyways. Why pay full price when you can pay 90%, right? Hmmm... Something to consider. Also, I have a Starbucks hot-drink tumbler, which will give me RM1 off the RSP if I decide to bring it (and The Husband) along. =p

p/s/s: I just won't order the Tiramisu ever again. Blergh.

Frankie Pizza, Bee Hooi Restaurant

Today, I'm going to introduce you to my very favourite el cheapo pizza on Penang Island – Frankie Pizza. It's situated at a busy corner lot kopi tiam at Pulau Tikus, along the same row as the Baskin Robbins, and right opposite Belissa Row. It's cheap and not at all fancy, but it. is. da. bomb. =D

Back when I was in upper secondary, my oldest friend in the world (time since we've known each other; not her age) and I used to have it for dinner every Friday night after tuition. (Yup, that's how we roll. Cheap pizza, followed by expensive take-away Ice-Blended Pure Vanilla from Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf across the road at Belissa Row. =p)

Well, we've been talking about revisiting our shared past by indulging in classic high-school-time food in my recent Mee Goreng post so... needless to say, I've been longing for it for a bit now. Didn't think I would get to tuck into a good, cheap, hot Frankie Pizza anytime soon given my situation but... surprise, surprise! Last Saturday's massive jam across the island fulfilled my dreams and made the impossible possible.

It was a long weekend, the jam was horrendous, we were out of gas... and wonder of all wonders, Bee Hooi Restaurant was the closest kopi tiam to us. So that's where we ended up for dinner! Unplanned. Haha! So OF COURSE, since I'm already here and all *flips hair, blows nails* I just had to have my Frankie Pizza in Chicken Ham with Extra Cheese sprinkled on top. =D =D =D

Ok, to be fair, I think the previous college dude who ran the stall used to be a lot more generous with the chicken ham. So was the Indonesian maid who took over after he left. This new Chinese aunty I've never seen before is a bit kiam siap so it's not as rewarding eating this as it was before. (It's been y-e-a-r-s since I've had a Frankie Pizza so I'm not sure when the changing of hands took place. :-/ #lousypatron) But even then, it tasted just like I remembered it to. DELICIOUS! In a cheap, no-frills pizza kinda way. Haha.

Oh, and as always, I took out
what I don't eat from my pizza:

Onions – good for flavour, not for eating. =p

Haha. My old friend used to eat all of this for me. (She likes onions; I don't.) This time around, it all went to waste. BUT NEXT TIME... when she's back... we are soooo having Chicken Ham Frankie Pizza with Extra Cheese (and Ice-Blended Pure Vanilla from Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf) again together. I can't wait! =D =D =D


To my oldest friend in the world, Gannie,

A reunion is in order! 
Can't wait till January. =)

Pam Song

Bee Hooi Restaurant
Lorong Pulau Tikus
Pulau Tikus, 10350, Penang

Opening Hours: 6pm – 12am

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Begin Again

Artist: Taylor Swift
Song Title: Begin Again

Took a deep breath in the mirror
He didn't like it when I wore high heels but I do
Turn the lock and put my headphones on
He always said he didn't get this song but I do, I do

Walked in expecting you'd be late
But you got here early and you stand and wave, I walk to you
You pull my chair out and help me in
And you don't know how nice that is but I do

And you throw your head back laughing like a little kid
I think it's strange that you think I'm funny cause he never did
I've been spending the last 8 months thinking all love ever does
Is break and burn and end
But on a Wednesday in a cafe, I watched it begin again

You said you never met one girl who
Had as many James Taylor records as you but I do
We tell stories and you don't know why
I'm coming off a little shy but I do

And you throw your head back laughing like a little kid
I think it's strange that you think I'm funny cause he never did
I've been spending the last 8 months thinking all love ever does
Is break and burn and end
But on a Wednesday in a cafe, I watched it begin again

And we walked down the block to my car
And I almost brought him up
But you start to talk about the movies
That your family watches every single Christmas
And I want to talk about that
And for the first time, what's past is past

And you throw your head back laughing like a little kid
I think it's strange that you think I'm funny cause he never did
I've been spending the last 8 months thinking all love ever does
Is break and burn and end
But on a Wednesday in a cafe, I watched it begin again
But on a Wednesday in a cafe, I watched it begin again

Same girl, different guy.
The latter is what makes all the difference.

Yup, being with the right guy
makes all the difference. =)

"You're Fired!"

I've never been in a position where I've had to fire someone before. I've always thought it would be a little like breaking up. Haha. Or maybe like telling a junior, "Hey, I'm sorry but you've not been accepted into the Prefectorial Board." You break a little bit of heart and bruise a bit of ego but... the person generally steps away unscathed, albeit a little emotionally scarred.

But two days ago, I came to realise
that it's not exactly the same.

Donald Trump makes it seem so easy saying those two words nobody ever wants to hear but... trust me, it's not easy at all. It's not easy to do what's best for you, best for your company, or even best for your family... if it means being the bad guy to somebody else. It's just not easy being the bad guy. Period. But sometimes... a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do when enough is enough and too much is just too much. :-/

Having said that, I didn't exactly
use the words, "You're fired!" 

Too harsh; too harsh.
Instead, I went with, "Pack your bags."

Sounds better, right? :-/

Garrett's Popcorn Shops – A Chicago Tradition Since 1949

First tasted the crunchy, caramel goodness of Garrett's popcorn back in February 2011 when Karaoke Queen brought back a pack of it from Singapore for those of us at KRPG to tuck into. Enjoyed it then but... I wasn't totally in lurrrve with it, ya know? Just am not the biggest fan of popcorn although I don't mind having it every once in awhile.

So... when Chatty Lass told me she was going to get some from KL for her dad in Penang, I half-heartedly tumpang-ed her buy, too. But only out of layan-ness and maybe some greed and gluttony. That's all. Haha. The "might as well lah" mentality lah. Not really cos I was craving it or cos I really liked it all that much.

But guess who ended up
loving it max – THE HUSBAND!

He had never tasted Garrett's popcorn before this and was very impressed with its taste. Haha. And I tell you, this man now ah... once pop, cannot stop wan. #curitagline No kidding. He pretty much wiped out a quarter of the pack in one sitting while watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians on E! with me. @_@

Ok, fine. To be fair, I ordered the smallest pack available lah, so it wasn't exactly a h-u-g-e pack to begin with. =p But still... it's a LOT of sweet, caramel-y popcorn to eat at one go, if you ask me. Haha.

RM17 for the smallest pack of Caramel popcorn from Garrett's.

I've always associated popcorn to movies. And even now, we do snack on our little stash of popcorn whenever The Husband and I are in bed watching iTunes movies on his iPad. But no way in hell can I ever picture myself buying Garrett's popcorn – tasty as it is – to snack on in a movie at the cinema. Heck, it costs more than a movie ticket! @_@

Eat gold meh? Cheh.

Traditional, high quality, zero preservatives, fresh from the kitchen – whatever lah. I personally doubt I'll be buying Garrett's popcorn very often. It's the price that's a big turn-off, really. I just can't justify spending so much on popped corn. :-/ A few bucks cheaper and it'd be a totally different story.

Anyway, here are some Easy-Macro™ pics
I shot of Garrett's popcorn via my iPhone 4s.

I think I can safely conclude that
this popcorn tastes better than it looks. Haha!

Related Post

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mee Goreng, Kedai Kopi Swee Kong, Pulau Tikus

If you're looking for amazing Mee Goreng on Penang Island, most people will direct you to the one at the corner of Bangkok Lane. Well, as a Penangite, I personally don't like that one. I think it's waaay overrated and it doesn't taste as good as this one about 100m away, on the opposite side of the road, in another corner kopi tiam called Swee Kong.

The Mee Goreng here is to. die. for. It's tasty and it's not swimming in fake tomato juice unlike the other one. This one is fried to perfection until it's just dry enough to have all the egg and sauce stick to the noodles. Just the way I like it.

 My super duper yummy Mee Goreng with egg,
but no taugeh, no sayur, and only potato and tau kua.

Don't be quick to judge if you think it looks pathetically plain. It's only cos of my special order. Dee's Mee Goreng looked more "normal" and appetising. Like so:

See?? Looks good right??

I tell you, this uncle's Mee Goreng is waaay better than the one at Bangkok Lane lah. Seriously. Just take my word for it. To be fair, Bangkok Lane wan used to be ok. Not my favourite but a good substitute if this uncle's Mee Goreng is sold out. But now?? Jatuh standard maximum. The last time I tried it a few months back, it tasted worse than crap. The whole plate of mee reeked of tomato and nothing else. That, and the mee was so wet I almost thought I ordered Mee Rebus by mistake. Terrible, terrible, terrible. I'd rather not eat, man.

So, yes. The Mee Goreng at Kedai Kopi Swee Kong
at the corner of Solok Moulmein is the way to go. =)

Heard that, Chatty Lass? =p

Making Room In The Room

After moving down to KL for almost 10 months and now coming back up to Penang again, I discovered that I have accumulated a lot of extra stuff along the way that I need to make room for in our room in Penang. I've now got more books, more clothes, more bed linen, more blankets, more electrical gadgets and more odds and ends than ever before... but no extra storage area to put them all in. @_@

So how to make room leh?

  1. Double stack all books
  2. Toss out old clothes
  3. Give away wearables that are no longer worn
  4. Fold up wedding/dinner gowns and keep them out of sight

Urm... What else can I do ah? :-/

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Round 2, The Morning After

After a night of pampering by Aesop, I still had some leftover face wash and body wash to use this morning. (I am super kiasu and will usually try to maximise my sample usage. One pack, use two times. =p) Though I must say... after using the leftovers in those samples a second time around, I may have had a slight change of heart. Haha.

I still really like the Parsley Seed Facial Cleanser. (Am seriously thinking of buying it after my current cleanser runs out. Thinking, thinking.) But the A Rose By Any Other Name Body Cleanser isn't half as bad as I said it was last night. The scent is starting to grow on me. =p

No new comments on the shampoo and conditioner cos I already finished it last night. The shampoo took more to sufficiently lather up and I thought the conditioner wouldn't work so I used it all. Haha. So... only face and body pampering this morning. Which is perfectly fine cos I wash my hair once a day only anyways. And that's only at night. =)

The Most Belated Wedding Present Ever!

Received it this morning. Hahaha. Delivered right to my doorstep by Crazy Stick Abu 1 year and 3.5 months after my wedding. Haha. I laughed like mad when I found out it was purposed as a wedding gift. Alamak, that woman. By the time her wedding gift arrived ah... first year anniversary long time passed already and I could have conceived, carried and given birth to a baby liao lor. Haha. So funny la this old friend of mine. Haha.

But still, I thought it was sweet that she bothered even though
she couldn't make it for our wedding cos she was in Shanghai. =)

And the gift was...



 Estée Lauder's Purse Spray Collection that comes with a pouch,
which include Beautiful, Pure White Linnen, Sensuous, 
Pleasures and Pleasures Intense.

Bwahahahaha! This is the way to go lah. Seriously.
As if guys care about wedding gifts to begin with, right?? HAHA.
Now, for some pictures of MY present:

Love the purse. I wonder if anybody will notice
if I use it as a clutch instead of a make-up bag. =p
Maybe during the next wedding dinner I'm invited to.


I have no idea what they all smell like except for Pleasures. Gotta try them out one by one and see if they sit well on my skin. First spritz will be the next time The Husband takes me out on a romantic date. =D

If ever that day comes, that is. -_-'''

Calamari Batter Recipe

Ok, first up, let me start by saying that I do NOT profess that I am a good cook. I don't really use recipes, nor do I follow them to a T. For everything, I just Google, read up a little or ask around, get the general idea in my head, then I pakai hentam aje. Haha. Thankfully, the results usually turn out well and I don't have to toss my hard work into the trash and tapau. =p

Having said that, I cannot guarantee you that this recipe will be educational in any way (or will ensure a good dish, for that matter *gulp*) but I'll try because you asked, Miss Crystal Hew! Haha. Anyway, it's such a super simple batter recipe you'd think I was conning you.

*deep breath*

Ok. Here goes.

Fried Calamari, as seen on this post.

  • Lots of corn starch or cornflour
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Hahahahahahaha. Seriously!

But if you're asking e-x-a-ct-l-y how much
of what I put into my batter last night, urm...
I'll try to recall and try again. =p

  • 5tbsp of corn starch
  • 1tsp of sea salt (probably need a little more than that if you're using regular table salt)
  • Slightly less than 1tsp of pepper (you can put 1tsp if you like the taste of pepper but I don't so I used less)
 * Note: This was what I used for just 1-and-a-half sotong.

But ah... to be honest with you, I think (again, no guarantee ah!) what really made the batter tasty, crispy and nice was that I used really, really hot oil to fry the calamari. Make sure the oil is so, so very hot it smokes before you toss in your batter-covered sotong. Should do the trick. I hope. @_@ HAHA. Anyway... Let me know if this recipe works for you! =D

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Aesop Night In

Barely an hour before this, I was tucking into a yummy dinner. At this very moment, I'm sitting on my bed, fresh from an Aesop bath (more on that in a bit =p), blogging on my comp, on my bed, in my room, alone at home and enjoying the quiet of the night. Ahhh, bliss. I could do with more supremely relaxing nights like this. =)

So, about that Aesop bath. Haha. (Yes, the obsession continues... =p) After dodging flying oil, eating my fill and feeling like a happy lump of lard, I decided to take a peek into my not-so-secret-anymore Aesop stash, grab a sachet or two (or three or four) and pamper myself tonight. Settled on these packets:

From Top-Bottom, Left-Right: Colour Protection Shampoo,
Colour Protection Conditioner, Parsley Seed Facial Cleanser and
A Rose By Any Other Name Body Cleanser.

That's right! Full head-to-toe pampering by Aesop. =D

But then again, it's not very much of a pamper if you're only using bath-time basics like shampoo, conditioner, face wash and body wash, right? :-/ So, of course, I planned to fill in the gaps with these two Aesop products I already own.

Geranium Leaf Body Scrub (back) and
Purifying Facial Exfoliant Paste (front).

Ended up only using the Purifying Facial Exfoliant Paste
in the bath cos a DIY full-body scrub would take
too long and my back was already aching. =(

I don't think I've blogged about this exfoliant though. It's actually a face scrub I bought a couple of months back. (Awhile after I bought the Geranium Leaf Body Scrub.) Was looking for one cos I found that my neglected skin was starting to look a little dull. So... where better to look than my favourite skincare brand these days – Aesop! Haha. Or so I thought. @_@

To be honest with you, I was a little disappointed with the scrub after using it. In hindsight, I wish I had a sample sachet of it to give it a try before I made my purchase. :-/ I mean, it's not bad lah. But it's not super-duper wonderful either. I just wish it smelled a little better. Don't get me wrong though. It doesn't smell bad. It just doesn't smell like sunshine and rainbows. Haha. But it does the job. The after-effects are acceptable. My skin was smoother and had a moderately better glow. I only wish it didn't leave a slightly oily film on my face after, too. But then again, it's not unbearably oily lah. I can live with it. :-/

 Colour Protection Shampoo.

I LOVED THIS SHAMPOO. It looked like thick olive oil in my hand. Haha. Clear with a little bit of yellow tinge. It lathered well and smelled great. Only bit that bothered me a little was that it finished off squeaky clean. Like, SQUEAKY! There's no way you could use this shampoo without a conditioner. I'll bet the tangles thereafter would be crazy!

So, thank goodness I was given the conditioner...

 Colour Protection Conditioner.

The conditioner didn't work like I expected it to. It didn't feel "conditioning" at all, unlike other conditioners. It wasn't slimy, smooth or slippery. Just a thick, semi-translucent, white paste that you apply to your hair. Thing is, since it doesn't feel like a regular conditioner, you can't really tell where you've applied it on and where you haven't. :-/ I was pretty disappointed at first. Thought sure no effect wan. BUT... after rinsing it out... man, oh man! It worked! My hair was no longer "squeaky", yet it didn't have that slimy texture regular conditioners always leave behind! I was impressed! Totally redeemed in my books. =D

Next, I tackled my face.

 Parsley Seed Facial Cleanser.

I really liked this gel cleanser. It didn't lather very much, but it cleaned my skin the way I like my facial cleansers to – clean, but not squeakily so. It also didn't leave my skin feeling tight or dry after even though I didn't bother toning or moisturising at all tonight. (Whoops. Bad habits die hard. =p) Need another plus point? It smelled pretty good, too! =D

Finally, I gave my body an Aesop wash.

This body cleanser smells semi-nice, semi-funky. Haha. I think the Black Pepper messes up the scent a little and the Rose Petal is what saves the day. It doesn't lather much at all but my skin felt clean after use, without any noticable dryness. Still, I would want to try their other body cleansers first before buying one. (IF I ever buy one, that is.) I'm not fully sold on this baby just yet.

All in all, I had a good night pampering myself with Aesop in the bath. I was very satisfied with the results of the shampoo, conditioner and the face wash, but was least impressed by the body cleanser. If the shampoo and conditioner cost a little less, I would totally get me some of that. But... my current shampoo and conditioner probably only cost one-third the price of Aesop's so... I've got a lot of thinking to do before I even consider jumping ship. :-/ Same goes for the face wash, to be honest. Why does Aesop have to be so expensive?? Haih! T_T

Maybe I'll just work on getting more samples instead. @_@

Home-Cooked Seafood Platter

I say "seafood platter" but I really mean just two kinds of seafood. Haha. Norwegian Salmon and Squid. It just sounds better – fancier! – when I put it that way. =p But, yes. I just enjoyed a scrumptious dinner of grilled salmon, deep fried calamari rings, crinkle cut fries and salad, washed down with fresh coconut juice from our very own coconut tree, out in the garden.

 Grilled by Mama with salt, pepper and olive oil.

 Fried by Yours Truly. Batter prepared with cornflour, sea salt and pepper.

First time working with Squid; first time making my own batter. I was surprised at how tasty this came out! Totally yums, even if I do say so myself. Think the supreme freshness of the squid really made a difference. If only I didn't have to dodge as much spattering oil when cooking it. Haha. But after eating... I think worth it la. Damn tasty. =p

Having said that, I think should start ang moh deep frying more. I always deep fry my White Pomfret but that's Chinese-styled deep frying without batter; only seasoning. Now, I feel like exploring other deep fried dishes. Like maybe prawn fritters or fish in batter like those you eat when you order Fish & Chips.

 Instant fries from the freezer, fried by Yours Truly.

 Pre-packed garden greens that Mama bought.

 My own sauce for dip!

I wanted to make Tartare Sauce but didn't have the ingredients on hand so I went with a sendiri-mari, pakai-hentam-aje sauce with whatever was at home. Mixed Mayonnaise, Tomato Sauce and Lingham Chilli Sauce together and, truth be told, I think it turned out A-W-E-S-O-M-E. I loved it! It went very well with my Calamari. Made good salad sauce, too. Haha. =p

Tonight's dinner.

And the preparation plus cooking time
for all that delicious goodness you see up there?

A mere half hour. Wheeee! =D