Thursday, December 23, 2010

My Blog is Now Available on Nokia Ovi Store

Finally, my blog app for Nokia Ovi Store is approved. To me this means that I've taken one step further in serious blogging hemisphere and I'm quite happy with this advancement. Now, if you have Nokia smart phones, you all can download my mobile blog application in Nokia Ovi Store, for FREE. Experience my blog on the go via your Nokia devices. I chose the below picture as my blog icon there, so you won't miss it!

Download my blog's mobile app HERE to follow me anywhere, anytime!Try it!

Remember this.
With this, you can read my blog updates, rate and review it on Nokia Ovi Store! If you are happy with it, don't forget to give me the star there. Otherwise, you are welcome to share with me your sentiments on how to improve it as this is my first trial in integrating mobile social media platform for my blog. I love exploring social media!

My blog outlook on Nokia Ovi Store.

I'll keep on wandering around so this blog will surely have updates for your reading pleasure.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Baby Pluto is in the House

A couple weeks ago, we received a S$10 voucher for Takashimaya from the M1 Workshop we attended. Today we purposely went to Orchard and tried to spend the voucher wisely. I know it's only S$10 but money is money and we just had to utilize it.

We walked and walked and walked around Takashimaya's department store to find the right thing to buy. Something we liked, is useful and worth exactly or slightly more than S$ 10. We almost gave up in finding the thing that we wanted to buy. Apparently, randomly spending money is not that easy.

Due to my life time commitments to Disney's classic characters, when we reached to a rack full of Disney's dolls, I was so tempted to get one. I saw some Disney's baby characters in Disneyland shop in Hong Kong Airport few months ago but decided not to buy one then. Today, I saw similar ones and could not helped to ask my husband's endorsement to get one. The doll comes with an air-tight plastic container too.

As usual, my husband had to go through some long painful contemplations with me in choosing which baby to bring home. The choices were Baby Mickey Mouse, Baby Minnie Mouse, Baby Tigger, Baby Piglet, Baby Goofy and Baby Eeyore. Difficult, right? Finally, we mutually agreed to pick Baby Pluto to take home.

Baby Pluto and its lodging.
Look at the tongue!
Hello, folks!
The Disney baby dolls are on sale so today its value was exactly S$10 (UP S$12.90)! Not sure what we will do with this Baby Pluto and the container, but as for the time being, I just feel like keeping it safe and sound in my glass cabinet. Hopefully this Baby Pluto represents the premiere of my Disney's baby collectibles, if husband does not object.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Comes Alive at AMK Hub

We live in Ang Mo Kio and AMK Hub is just walking distance from our place. We noticed some cute Christmas decorations were put on in the mall's entrance already more than a month ago and planned to snap some shots there when we got time.

The truth is although we walk pass this decoration everyday we just never took some photos until today. I happened to be a bit dressed up from the Christmas celebration with friends today and my husband brought his camera. So yes, he put the Santa's hat onto my head and asked me to pose around while we got the chance and the mood - before they take all these cute boards and dolls down right after Christmas.








I love the Christmas festive season in Singapore! Everywhere is so delightful and merry although there is no snow involved! Everyone in the country is just so enthusiastic in celebrating Christmas.

And this is how I show my enthusiasm over Christmas this year, I've been wearing the Santa's hat at the Christmas celebrations and wore it until I reached home after the photo session at AMK Hub. I think some peopled glared at me and my Santa's hat on the street on my way back home this afternoon but I didn't give a damn. It's Christmas time. I mean, yes, I can be that shameless sometimes.

Jingle bells! Jingle bells! Jingle all the way...!

Party-of-Five at 7017 Flavours Restaurant

Today is the day for another Christmas lunch with mini gift exchange session. This time around I had it with my dear ex-colleagues cum now friends plus my husband. I was looking forward to this one for the longest time. It has really been a long time since our last rendezvous.

Rej chose the lunch venue for today, the 7017 Flavours Philippines Cuisine Restaurant at Marina Square. The restaurant's unique name is apparently based on the fact that the Philippines has 7017 islands. It was my first experience dealing with real Filipino cuisine galore in a fine-dining setting.

First timers at Filipino food fare.

Finally we were together again!

Introduced by our Filipino friends, Rej and Irish, we dined on the best authentic Filipino food in town. Very interesting. Nice lunch and we learned something new today. These are the food fare that were introduced to us today.

The Main Course:

Cute steamed white rice.

Pinakbet (Shrimp Paste Vegetables). 

Inihaw (Grilled Seafood). 

Crispy Pata (Pork Knuckles).

Me and Iris going crazy!
Oops, Irish and I forgot to take the picture of the best dish for today (in my opinion). The Adobo Chicken. Shame, shame.

The Drinks:

 Filipino brewed coffee.

Sago Gulaman.


The Desserts:

Maja Blanca.

Leche Flan.

Brazo de Mercedes.

One last important thing before we ended our small Christmas party was the gift exchange session. I thought since it was a small group, we would just randomly exchange the gifts. Apparently, Rej has given some serious thoughts on how to do this properly.

We exchanged the gifts in three attempts since some of us received our own gifts. First round was led by Rej. She read a long story from the internet with countless "left" and "right" words. Whenever she mentioned "right", we had to pass the gift to someone sitting on our right side, and vice versa. It was really amusing and interesting but unfortunately, it didn't work out as planned. Second round was led by my husband. He suggested us take turn in 'grabbing' the gift on hand that we wanted from other person. However, it still didn't work out either. Last round, we just decided to draw some lots from the numbered folded papers. It worked and concluded our short catch-up meeting today.

Two of us with our Christmas gifts from friends.

I got Irish's gift! So sweet, huh?

Lots and lots of Christmas gifts for us today. 
Additional presents from Rej: Nail polish for the girls and
a bottle of nail color remover for my husband's wife.

By the way, it was a small international gathering we had today. Participants comprised of Indonesian, Malaysian, Singaporean and Filipino nationals.

Maligayang pasko! (Merry Christmas in Tagalog).

Friday, December 17, 2010

Attending [Nuffnang] Nokia Ovi Workshop

Last Wednesday night, I became a workshop's delegate for one more time. I attended Nuffnang's Nokia Ovi Workshop at Suntec City Mall. I was among those 50 bloggers in Singapore who got selected to attend Nuffnang's complimentary workshop last weekend.

The workshop was held in partnership with Nokia. It was about publishing our blog as a mobile application with Nokia's Ovi App Wizard. After the workshop, my blog app should be down-loadable on the Nokia Ovi Store, for free. So those who have Nokia smart phone, please give 'The Wanderer's Journal' a look on the Nokia Ovi Store. Last time I checked, my blog app is still under their review for publish but I do hope it can be published real soon (apparently it has taken way more than 24 hours for their review).

Anyway, Nuffnang's Nokia Ovi Workshop was quite an interesting workshop to attend. It was my first time attending a workshop related to personal blogging and social media. At 7.00pm sharp, before the workshop commenced, the organizer from Nuffnang did some ice-breaker games amongst the participants. It was quite a funny experience. All of us were given a blank white paper and a pen. We were supposed to draw ourselves in one minute time and the organizer would collect all the drawings once the time was up.

This is how I pictured myself in my drawing.
Then, they would distribute each drawing randomly to the whole participants. Everyone was asked to find the person on the paper and have some introductions with other nuffnangers in the room.

The guy that I had to find during the game. Easy to find? Tell me about it
It took me four or five wrong guys to finally find THE ONE on the paper that was given to me. As for my drawing, I think I drew myself quite well. It's not fantastic but I guess it was pretty much self-explanatory. One girl who had my paper shouted "Is this you?" to me when I was about to search the chap in the above picture.

Right after the game, the workshop started at about 7.30pm. The workshop was led by Nokia's representative called Elliott Renton. He opened the workshop with some brief overview of Nokia and the Ovi store. Moving on, he taught all the participants the step-by-step guides on how to create the mobile app for our blogs in the Nokia Ovi Store. It was a really fun thing to do and not so difficult to create either.

Before the workshop started.
A greeting surprise from Nokia on every  table.
A sneak peek on my blog app to-be on the Nokia Ovi Store.
These are the freebie that I got during the workshop. Not bad, on top of the chance to have more publication on my blog if my mobile app is published, I also walked away with a Nokia optical mouse.

Optical Mouse from Nokia. Cool?



 
Me showing off my Nokia's mouse to husband at home.
After a one long day outside, I definitely looked like a train wreck.

Oh, at the workshop I actually saw my favorite blogger in Singapore, Leonny, attending the event too. I check her blog like e.v.e.r.y.d.a.y but when I saw her and her daughter at the workshop, I was so chickened out. I was too painfully shy to say hi and introduce myself to her. I pushed myself so many times with a thinking like "Come on, both of you are Indonesian stranded in Singapore, why can't even you show some guts and say hi to her?". Yet, I still didn't talk to her when she was like only 50cm away from me in the dinner buffet area. Bummer!

A lesson learn for me as a blogger if I were to attend this kind of workshop again in the near future: Please prepare a camera (although luckily I was saved by my iPhone 4 at the workshop). So, a camera is a must. That's how a real blogger act. Have a camera ready and snap photos for blog updates. No camera, no photo, not cool.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Small Christmas Party with Colleagues

Yay! Today I had the first Christmas Party for 2010. The first ones who celebrated Christmas with me were colleagues in the new office. We had Christmas buffet lunch and loads of presents. The best part of today's Christmas celebration was that everybody got early release from office on Thursday! Yes, we all were dismissed from work right after the lunch. I think we all only worked in less than three hours today. Cool, huh!

First thing in the morning when I reached office, I was surprised by the Christmas goodie bag sitting on my desk that the office manager prepared quite some time ago. She did all the shopping, from the Christmas tree to the contents of the goodie bag. All this while, she kept all the goodie bags under the Christmas tree that she herself put on. 

The office's Christmas tree.
The Christmas Goodie Bag.
At10.30am, the office manager announced that all the staff should leave the office and share cab with other colleagues, head to Holiday Inn Atrium Hotel's Melting Pot Cafe at Outram Road for buffet lunch at 12.00pm, wear the Santa's hat, have some games and gift exchange sessions and then everyone is permitted to not go back to the office after the small party. *Felt like going back in those schooling days*

We had heavy lunch, some internal networking sessions (to get to know each other since most of us are new to the company) and hilarious games during the gift exchange. We all had very good laughs today.

Everyone was tasked to bring a Christmas present of S$10 value and put some clues on the gift so the receiver could guess who gives the present.

The Christmas presents I packed this year.
A colleague blessed with loud voice assisted everybody in reading the clues and spiced the game session with humors. The person who could not guess who gave the present should take a bite of wasabi bread or dance briefly. This is what I wrote in my gift: "Merry Christmas to whoever receives this gift. This is from the new kid on the block who sits about 2 meters away from the Christmas tree in the office". I thought it was an easy clue but the whole colleagues were guessing about 5 minutes.

Sliced bread with wasabi paste for those who cannot guess who gave the gift.
Office Manager as the MC and they guy in pink acted as the MC assistant.
Guess who!
Group photo with colleagues after the small party.
Few colleagues thought today I purposely wore the red dress to match the Santa's hat from the office. This morning, one colleague bumped into me and made a remark that I looked like Santarina, who is allegedly the Santa Claus's wife. My red dress made me an accidental fashion victim during the party, but it turned out to be a nice match to be paired with the Santa's hat, isn't it?

These are my first Christmas presents this year: chocolates, S$ 50 shopping voucher, first-ever Santa's hat, no-smoking balloon and a mini Teddy Bear. Once more, I am so jinx in lucky draws. I didn't win the extra S$ 20 shopping voucher during the lucky draw. Anyhow, I am so happy today and have a strong feeling that tomorrow everyone will be on severe holiday mood.

Domestic treasures of the day.
Well, I guess it's no longer that early to say Merry Christmas to everybody.

Merry Christmas to you!
Have yourself a merry little Christmas!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Happy Birthday to My Journal

Today marks the second year of my journal's existence. I'm so proud of it. I forsook it once but I rekindled my romance and fell in love with it again even deeper after I realized how important it is to my life.

Happy 2nd Birthday to my Blog!
Hey, my journal! You've been a great company for the past two years. So many things had happened since the day I created you. Thank you for your kind help in maintaining all my life records, entertaining my astronomical rambles and expressing my wandering thoughts. You've been a splendid silent best mate. Really.

I truly wish I could keep my burning passion to you for the longest time possible. I really hope to keep this infatuation feeling with you just like the first moment I titled you and clicked your "Publish Post" button exactly two years ago.

Wish you many happy years to come!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Dusk

We've been kinda stuck at home this Sunday. Literally, we've been browsing internet and watching one after another old movies all day long. We only went out for breakfast and lunch. We just don't know where to go today. And we both really can't believe that tomorrow is already Monday. All of us had been waiting for weekend for damn long. Isn't it way too fast to see how weekend just pass by like this?

Anyway, I spotted a nice sunset view from my apartment and asked husband to quickly snap photos of it. 

 View from my 20th floor apartment. 
Taken by YK at 7.56pm.

 
 Another view from my 20th floor apartment. 
Taken by YK at 7.57pm.

Then, I asked him "Shall we go out and see?" He said, "You won't get to see this kind of view downstairs. This is Singapore. The sky is blocked by buildings". Well, well.

Albeit we have dawn and dusk everyday, unless we are bound to be somewhere in a beach or mountain and deliberately spare a time to witness them, most of the time we rarely appreciate the exquisite views they produce. Moreover, in a city life like this, when the sky is clear, how often we notably mind the beautiful sunrise and sunset saying hello to us every day?

Minutes later, there it goes, time flies once more. As I blog about these sunset photos, the sky is already dark.

Dating with Birds at the Jurong Bird Park

Yesterday, we had a marvelous date with birds. Since my husband's office is located at Jurong East area, he suggested us visit the Jurong Bird Park when we had the chance. Enough said, yesterday right after he finished his half-day alternate Saturday work, we went to Boon Lay, took bus 251 from there and headed to Jurong Bird Park.

All this while, I was always so skeptical about visiting animal parks, something like Jurong Bird Park per se. I always thought that I already knew everything about animal and had seen most of the animals in this world from TV or live observation at zoos when I was small. Thus, purposely paying tickets to see these animals at a park is just pointless.

I shared my plan about visiting this park to a friend over lunch few days ago and she said, "Hey, Jurong Bird Park is nice. It's really fun there. I came there many times. Since the park charged the bird feed at S$1 per cup until they charge it at S$ 3 per cup now." Oh well, she was indeed big time right about this. Both my husband and I had fun with the bird collection and the bird shows at the park yesterday. I must say the whole visit was really more than checking out birds at a huge park.

When we first set foot at the park's main gate (i..e just about to go to the ticket counter), we were stopped by a guy from Wildlife Tour & Travel offering us a package of entry ticket, panorail ride and bird feed at S$ 26/pax. The normal entry ticket for adult costs S$ 18/pax. Without thinking so much, we said yes to the offer.

First time we entered the park, on our right side, we were greeted by a place full of penguins called the Penguin Coast. I was just startled looking at how big the penguin display and how many penguins they keep there.

YK in front of the Penguin display.

The marvellous Penguin Coast.

Then we continued to find our way to Penguin Wonderland. We expected a place full of penguins running around where we can touch or at least see them in an open area but there was apparently nothing wonderful about the so called Penguin Wonderland. It was just a kid play ground with a penguin theme.

OTW to the Penguin Wonderland.

Mimicking the Penguin.

Looked like they just had a penguin party with lots of kids and their parents and we got to see some of the party left over at the Penguin Wonderland.

I found an eco-friendly penguin handicraft made from the egg carton holder. 
Cute, isn't it?

Since we came to the park already in the late of the afternoon, we kind of missed most of the shows of the day. We only managed to see the Birds n Buddies Show at the Pools Amphitheater at 3.00pm. We purposely chose a VVIP seat and really enjoyed watching all the various birds' aerial shows. Gosh, we didn't know that birds' show can be so amusing. One important note here is that most of the audience were really entertained by one parrot who can really speak and sings in English and Mandarin at the very end of the show.

 Philip 'The Host' and the Vulture.

 Pretty trained parrots at the show.

Donate any amount for the bird and get this 'Sassy' post card.

Right after this show, we were rushing to catch the last show at the park, the Kings of the Skies (Birds of the Prey Show) at the Fuji Hawk Walk at 4.00pm. On our way to get there, we spotted a real nice pond full of red flamingos. Look at those long legs!

Red flamingos parade in the pond.

The carnivore birds show was not bad! The eagles, hawks and falcons in actions were just awesome. Some of them really do look so handsome (and macho)!

The MC with the Three Vultures.

Honestly, their shows are not just for kids. They are really good shows for adult's consumption too. They are really entertaining and educative. We just found the ways they slipped lots of messages and gentle reminders to preserve other birds' habitats out there by keeping our environment well throughout the show are creative.

Before we rode the Panorail, the mini "MRT" that transports visitors to three different aviaries within the park, we made a stop at the World of Darkness. According to the park's brochure, Panorail is the world's only monorail that runs through an aviary. The World of Darkness displays so many kind of nocturnal birds in this world. Apparently, this bird house features a system of reverse lighting, converting day to night and vice versa.

Important note about the owls.

One kind of scary look owls inside the display.

Enough with analyzing the owls, we took the Panorail and headed to a place called the Lory Loft. It's a really large walk-in lorry flight aviary. We got to feed the bird with honey water mix and the lorries immediately flocked to us!

The Lory menu.

 It's fun to have the bird flock to you.

We love feeding the birds.

Before we ended our date with the birds yesterday, we made our last stop with the Panorail. We had a look at the African Waterfall Aviary. Seemingly, this place hosts the tallest man-made waterfall in the world.

The African Waterfall.

After we snapped some pictures with the waterfall, we quickly went back to the Panorail station and headed back to the main station since the last Panorail operates at 5.50pm. We really needed to go back to the main gate ASAP. Before we really left the park, we had a chance to see some more penguins. This time around, these endangered penguins are kept in an open area.

Important Notice. Please read. Save the Penguins.

The swimming African Penguins.

Last but not least, I forced my husband to pose with this hollow board before we really made an exit from the park.

The Zoo Keeper.

So, I guess that's the end of our long date with the birds on Saturday afternoon.

I am so going to bring my family to this place once they get the chance to visit Singapore in the near future.