Sunday, November 27, 2011

Christmas Giveaway: 2 Baking Recipe Books (100 Everyday Baking Recipes)

My favorite holiday season of the year, Christmas, is just around the corner!

Christmas is always a wonderful time of the year and I literally love everything about Christmas - from Santa Claus, Christmas trees, Christmas carols, Christmas desserts, Christmas cookies and of course, Christmas presents!

Christmas is all about CELEBRATING AND GIVING! I have no specific plan yet on how I would celebrate my Christmas this year (other than spending my Christmas in Singapore, perhaps) but I already have a Christmas plan for all of you, my blog readers!

This Christmas, I'd like to give something away to my blog readers. Since my hobby is baking, what I have chosen to share with you for Christmas this year is TWO (2) BAKING RECIPE BOOKS containing 100 of everyday baking recipes! Although I am just an amateur baker who happens to love baking and testing some new recipes in general but I would like to share the joy of baking with all of you too!

This said, if you love baking, do join this Christmas giveaway contest! If you plan to learn baking or just bought your oven, participating at this small giveaway contest might be a good chance to motivate you to bake more or complete your baking recipe book collections. If you do not bake at all, but you know someone who loves to, I'd advise you to also take part at this contest as well! Why? Because if you happen to win this book, this book would indeed serve a nice and meaningful Christmas present to that person. Remember, Christmas is about giving too! Let's make someone's Christmas special together this year.

The two (2) recipe books to be won are:


My little Christmas presents for (two of) you this year!


Here are the simple ways to join this Christmas giveaway contest:

1. 'LIKE' The Wanderer's Journal Facebook Page, if you have not already.
     http://www.facebook.com/TheWanderersJournal

2. SHARE this giveaway contest on your Facebook, twitter or email. Spread the words. The more people participating at this giveaway, the merrier! If you have twitter account, you can tweet about this giveaway by using this tweet: "Enter the Christmas Giveaway and win the baking books via @christinetj's blog http://shar.es/oGHBA"

3. Leave a COMMENT below this blog post and mention the name and which part of the country you currently reside plus tell me who you'd like to give this book to as Christmas gift, should you win it? (Your Mom, wife, girlfriend, best friend, sister, brother or yourself maybe?) ** One person, one entry please**

* This Christmas giveaway contest ends on Sunday, 11 December 2011 (11.59pm, Malaysia time).
** Two (2) winners will be announced as soon as possible via a separate blog post and The Wanderer's Journal Facebook's wall.
*** The winners are randomly selected by number generator. If the selected winners do not respond in 48 hours, I will have to redraw.
**** This giveaway is open to blog readers who live in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore only.

Stand your chance to win this book! 
Leave your comment below this post now!

Early MERRY CHRISTMAS from me, everyone!

Do start leaving your comment below to win this book!

I'm very excited about this Christmas giveaway contest and I hope you are too (by participating at this giveaway)!

P/S: This is a non-sponsored giveaway contest.


[This contest has been closed. Winners will be announced soon]

Experimenting with Basket Weave Frosting

I purchased four boxes of cute colorful sugar flowers and a rotating cake tray for cake decorations in Indonesia earlier this week. I was ecstatic with these findings and as usual, I could not wait to start utilizing them.

Yesterday, I made the rich chocolate cake and frosting that I once tested with the kids. However, this time around, I tried to experiment with a new method of cake frosting. It's something that I have never tried before - the basket weave decorating technique. Based on some online cake decorating tutorials and inspirational floral basket cake pictures found in the internet, basket weave frosting seems easy to be done and guarantees beautiful end results.

In short, I was challenged.

My intention yesterday was to make a pretty floral basket cake. Oh well, making basket weave frosting turned out not as easy as I thought. It indeed required practice, patience and butter cream with correct spreading consistency. Also, I think I went a little bit overboard with the icing sugar for my chocolate butter cream frosting yesterday. Hence, the frosting that I used yesterday was not so cooperative when I forced it to make the woven designs for the cake. *Sigh!* Apparently I am still not that savvy enough when it comes to mixing butter cream.

Moving on, for an amateur like me, experimenting with this frosting style was utter laboring moments. My husband told me to quit it after the first three stripes I made and asked me to do the easier frosting method. My Mom-in-Law who happened to see me having a hard time decorating this cake remarked that making patterns for the cake frosting was kind of pointless to do as once the cake is swallowed into the stomach; it's going to be shapeless anyway. No offence, but does not this law apply to any kind of food we eat?

Nevertheless, amid the protests, I persevered. I tried to finish what I started.

So here we go, some photos of the somewhat messy floral basket cake that I made yesterday.

 Floral basket chocolate cake: Before.

I used melon essence for the green frosting which tasted quite nice, in my opinion.

Floral basket chocolate cake: After.

By the way, on the taste front, overall, the cake's taste was still quite nice I guess, except that the frosting was kind of too sweet for adults. Thanks for this; my funny husband said that I am indeed a sweet person to him because I always bake really sweet cakes for him. Hmm, do we have an Amen here? Do you think this is a correct way to define a sweet person at all? Haha.

In conclusion, my first floral basket cake yesterday didn't exactly meet my expectation but I forgive myself for this mess since it's only my first time trying. Practice makes perfect!

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 21

This is it! The last day of the journaling challenge. Finally.


The #21 Day Question: What is Your Biggest Wish for the Future?

My Answer:

I wish to be a contented person.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 20



The #21 Day Question: What Limiting Beliefs Are You Holding On To?

My Answer:

Something that may hold me back is the belief that I may not be able to do something well like others do. This means my lacking of self-confidence and fear of taking risks. There are times when I am afraid to fail and worry too much in doing something (big).

However, if I just give something a try really hard and pray enough, at the end of the day, usually I end up just fine.

Friday, November 25, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 19


The #19 Day Question: What Words Best Describe You?

My Answer:

I am a complex person. I think and worry too much most of the time. I am a fussy, demanding, conservative, overcritical, practical, humorous, serious, determined, hardworking, loyal , easily-angered, jealous, impatient, bashful, confused/contemplative, moody, reserved, quiet, sensitive,  ignorant, somewhat organized, analytical, panic freak and less adventurous. 

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 18



The #18 Day Question: What Matters Most to You?

My Answer:

What matters to me are the well-being and happiness of my family and myself. The pursuit of my life goals and dreams are also important to me.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 17



The #17 Day Question: If The World Came to An End Today, How Would You Feel?

My Answer:

I would be very sad and scared because I would not know what happen next (I mean after death). I would be devastated too because I may not be able to be together with my loved ones again.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 16



The #16 Day Question: What Makes You Happy?

My Answer:


Another tough question posted here. However, after some thinking and realizing on my current efforts in finding pleasures in simple things, I guess I am happy when:
  • I meet my family and relatives in Indonesia
  • I call my parents in Indonesia
  • I reconnect with my old friends wherever they are
  • I see my flowers bloom in the garden
  • I successfully bake something
  • I accomplish so much work in a day or have a fruitful day at work
  • I win or am nominated or selected for something big! For instance: I was nominated for ablog awards, my pre-wedding photos were featured in the local newspaper and chosen as the Bridal House's advertisement banner, etc.
  • I get the chance to travel, sightseeing or shopping
  • I date my husband
  • I do not fight with my loved ones
  • I am not sick
  • I receive comments on my blog

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 15



The #15 Day Question: What is the Most Painful Thing You Have Experienced To Date?


My Answer:


After reading all the heart-breaking stories shared by the other participants, I find it rather difficult to mention mine. Although I may have several unfavorable situations in my life thus far, such as my then-boyfriend (now-husband)’s serious car accident two years ago, the demise of my maternal Grandfather from cancer about six years ago, broken friendships, being bullied, etc. – it’s just hard to pick one here.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 14


The #14 Day Question: What is Love?


My Answer:

Love means caring, understanding, accepting, faithfulness, patience and kindness.

Love is a lot of giving and little of taking.

Love gives more reason for us to lead a better and happy life.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 13


The #13 Day Question: What Do You Fear Most?

My Answer:

I fear of losing my loved ones to death. Death is impossible to prevent as it would eventually happen to every one of us but I am really scared of losing my family, relatives or friends who ever crossed path with me.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 12



The #12 Day Question: What Are Your Biggest Goals in the Coming Years?

My Answer:

Since my husband and I had finally had our wedding celebrations, we would love to expand our family. This said, I guess my biggest goal in the next few years, would be conceiving our first baby. We have been trying for few months by now but we still got no luck.


On top of that, I hope, my husband and I could move into our very own house soon. I also plan to keep working to earn and save some money so I can help my parents in Indonesia buy a new decent car.


Also, I really wish that I can see growing traffic on my blog and monetize it in the coming years.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 11


The #11 Day Question: Out of Your Five Senses, Which is the Most Important to You And Why?

My Answer:

At first, I thought what most important to me would definitely be the sense of hearing because I am very sensitive with noise or news. But after I think again, I think I would not last without being able to see again. I can't imagine of living in the darkness, not being able to see the people or places that I love; hence, not being able to store them into my memory either. It would be a complete madness.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 10


The #10 Day Question: Who Do You Enjoy Spending Time With?

My Answer:

I enjoy spending times with my husband because he makes me laugh most of the time and always stands by me. He is comforting, not gossipy and a very objective person.

On top of that, I really enjoy spending my times with my parents and some old friends in Indonesia because they know me best and are the true like-minded friends who celebrate with me when I am happy, console me when I am sad and correct me when I am about to make mistakes. Also, thanks to the mother tongue that we all share, it is easier for us to deeply talk and laugh out loud about every little thing that happens around us when we meet offline and online.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 9

I chose to abstain from being connected to the internet when I was in Indonesia because I wanted to spend more quality time with my family and rest my mind. This said, I had to postpone my participation from 21 Day Journaling Challenge for 9 solid days. And now, I am trying my best to catch up before this challenge is closed in two days time.


The #9 Day Question: What Drives You?

My Answer:

I am driven by the desire to have a better life. I strive to create a better life (mentally, financially and physically) for myself and my loved ones, especially for my parents in Indonesia.

Surprise, Surprise!

My husband and I just came back from nine days lazy holiday at my hometown in Indonesia late last night. When I woke up this morning I was pretty much half-conscious as I was still very sleepy and tired from the long trip yesterday. Moreover, I was swamped with clearing work emails this whole morning. Thus, although today is Friday but I felt a tad of Monday blues.

Anyway, during lunch time, my husband received a call from his friend and this call instantly changed my lethargic Friday mood.

Since my husband and his friend spoke in Mandarin, I initially thought that they were talking about the wedding photo contest that we participated back in September. Once my husband hung his phone up, I made him spit every bit of the content of the phone conversations that he had with his friends out to me in English.

The brief call that my husband shared with his friend roughly sounded like this: "Hey, have you seen?" "Seen what?" "Your wedding photo! Placed as the advertisement banner of a shop in front of the market (Pasar Besar) in town. Very big photo. Half of the shop!" "Huh? What shop? The Bridal House you mean? That Bridal House was the one who took our pre-wedding photos some time ago".

Seemingly, the Bridal House that we hired to shoot our pre-wedding photos earlier this year decided to use a couple of our photos as their shop's new advertisement banner. I was really surprised and excited with this news! I gorged my lunch quickly and forced my husband to finish his real fast too so we could go to town for a while and see the banner that my husband's friend mentioned with our own eyes.

After lunch, off we went to the Bridal House. From afar, both of us really saw two of our pre-wedding photos were placed as a giant advertisement banner of the Bridal House, on top of its shop.

A really nice surprise we had today! 
Our pre-wedding photos is being showcased as 
the Bridal House's new advertisement board.

Happy to say that we are very proud with our own pre-wedding photos now. 
Haha!

I was elated and felt that it's really a huge privilege for my husband and I to have our pre-wedding photos being selected for advertisement banner like this. Albeit the Bridal House never asked for permission from us for this advertisement placement but for this particular occasion, both husband and I actually do not mind at all. In fact, we both are now quite proud with our own pre-wedding photos because among all the amazing pre-wedding portfolios that the Bridal House had done so far, they chose ours.

By the way, I could not help but immediately announced this news to all my family, friends and practically to the whole world (via Facebook)! My Mom-in-Law drove all the way to town with Grandma and aunties who happened to visit us this weekend to witness our giant pre-wedding photos banner too.

So yeah, I had a happy Friday this afternoon, before the flu symptoms hit me hard at around 3pm.

Monday, November 14, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 8



The #8 Day Question: How Much Do You Love Yourself?

My Answer:

On a scale of 1-10, I would say I still stand on the scale of 7 when it comes to loving myself. I realize I have not loved myself to the fullest because I still underestimate my life, at times. 


There are times when I am not grateful enough with myself (and my life) because I always think that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.


Although these days, I am trying hard to inject myself with more happiness by learning to find pleasures in simple things in life; but there are times that I make myself miserable too, simply because I want to please everybody, which I obviously can't. 


Lastly, I think I have not fully loved myself yet because I still find it hard not to bother some people's non-constructive criticisms towards me. There are times when I get too carried away with people's non-constructive criticisms on me and for few moments, these make me feel that myself is less worthy. Non-constructive criticisms require a lot of efforts to be completely ignored as they are actually nothing but poisons and cruelty to my soul. Hence, in the attempt to love myself more I should seriously try not to take non-constructive criticisms to heart as they do nothing good to me.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 7


The #7 Day Question: What is the Most Important Thing You've Learned in Life So Far?

My Answer:


My life motto for years has been "Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight".

Persevere. Never quit on yourself or your dreams. Always try again until you succeed.

That's important in life.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Snippets of Guilin, China: Day Four

This post of my fourth day in Guilin is a long one because I have a lot of beautiful photos that I want to share here. By far, I think my day four in Guilin was the most relaxing recreation time I had there. By looking at the photos taken on our fourth day in Guilin, all the good memories of our beautiful day there were so heartfelt.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

8.30am After breakfast and checked out from the hotel in Yangshuo, we went for a river cruise at #7 Scenic Spot Destination in Guilin, the popular Li River (漓江). It is one of China's most famous scenic places and featured in many scroll paintings for the longest time. From here, we could see all the beautiful mountainous scenery that we often see in Chinese paintings. This river is also used for the natural stage of the Impression of Liu San Jie Performance. I was so happy when we were given to enjoy this river cruise because I could finally witness the beauty of all these mountains in person.

A beautiful mountain in Guilin.

Us at the Li River Cruise.

Savoring every moment and the scenery surrounds the Li River.

My husband purchased these deep-fried 'river-food' as our snacks 
when we were in the boat.

A fisherman in Li River.

The stage and audience seats of the Impression of Liu San Jie during the day.

The first official group photo with all the tour members.


21 Journaling Challenge: Day 6


The #6 Day Question: What Frustrates You?

My Answer:

I get really frustrated:
  • When I am forced to do the things that I do not fancy doing
  • When I am in a noisy place
  • When I run out of time
  • When there is communication breakdown
  • When someone orders me to do something in a rude way - worse, without even saying thank you
  • If there are sudden changes in some aspects of my life which force me to leave my comfort zones almost immediately too
  • When other people, or rather those who are close to me, cannot understand me
  • If I cannot control the situation nor do the things in the way I want or as I plan
  • When I have to spend a huge amount of money
  • When I am in a very cold weather

Friday, November 11, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 5


The #5 Day Question: Who Is the Most Important Person to You in the World?

My Answer:


My Dad on my wedding day in Malaysia.

The most important person to me in the world is my Dad! Come rain or shine, he’s always there for me. His unconditional love, tireless and endless supports have made me of who I am today. He consoles me when I am sad and celebrates with me when I am happy. He’s the one who never fails to immediately call me back whenever I ring (but unanswered) or leave him a message. Even though I am thousand miles away from him, when I’m sick he always makes those expensive international calls every single day just to check if I already feel better than the day before. He is the one who always makes sure that I have reached my destination all right when I travel. I’m already married and 27 years old this year, but I’m always Daddy’s little girl.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 4



The #4 Day Question: If You Are to Travel Back in Time to 3 Years Ago, What Advice Would You Give Yourself?

My Answer:


In 2008, I celebrated my 24th birthday. I was new to Singapore, had about 1 year working experience as a conference producer in Singapore, already experienced overseas business trips (which sounded so cool to me!), had begun sending some money back to my parents in Indonesia, started my first and only blog, spent a lot of money for shopping and was in the search of right community or group of friends. The latter part was not so easy. Although I had a lot of friends here and there in Singapore but I only had two or three that were really close to me.


31st October 2008: Me and two of Serangoon Condo's ex-housemates.
Yep, this was taken when we were about to move out from the condo.


Some advice that I'd like to give myself if I could travel back in time 3 years ago are: (1) Be more less serious, kinder/friendlier and have more fun, especially with my ex-housemates in Serangoon Condo. Four of us only got close after the condo's contract was about to expire and once it was, we all were scattered. I stayed put in Singapore and the rest of them moved to Indonesia and Australia. Although, in the end, we became close friends and still manage to be in touch from time to time until to date, but I regretted the one year that I wasted without really relating to or hanging out with them. I should have been more curious about their lives too, not too busy with mine. Just an update, now four of us are already married! *see how time flies - they were all students three years ago and I just started my career in Singapore*


Another advice that I'd like to give myself then  perhaps is (2) start dieting more seriously. I was really chubby back then (Oh, God! I can't stand looking at my old photos now). Lastly,(3) do not spend so much money for clothes!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 3


The #3 Day Question: What is Your Ideal Diet Like?

My Answer:


My ideal diet would be food which is low-carb, low-fat and high-fibre. It doesn't matter whether I get this food from outside or I cook myself; the main point is the dish selection on our plate. I take pleasure in eating a lot of vegetables (I love colors on my plate), fresh fruits and white meat; and drinking milk and plain water. I used to practice this blood (type) A diet rather strictly few years back. On top of that, I seldom touched junk food; do not drink alcohol and smoke.

Sadly, since I moved to Malaysia (although I am still a fussy eater when it comes to the menu), I have become more like a carnivore here. I have been eating red meat and processed food for the past year and binging on junk-food more often than I ever did. I know it's wrong but I find it challenging to get back on the right track now. One day, I want to return to my previous blood (type) A diet lifestyle which is heavy on vegetables, fruits and free of red meat.

Also, since I have gastric problem, my eating habit is always several small meals a day. It is proven that eating 5 smaller meals a day prevents me from painful gastric irritation, makes me feeling full all the time thus easier to maintain my weight and gives me better digestion. I always feel healthier that way. My husband always asks me to eat bigger portions three times a day so I won't feel hungry so fast. However, this just doesn't work for me. I have to eat smaller portion for every meal otherwise I'd have upset stomach. My idea is I just stop eating when I am full. I don't make my stomach take food more than its capacity.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Snippets of Guilin, China: Day Three

I know I have stalled my Guilin Honeymoon story for the longest time. Somehow, I just had too much photos, places and stories to remember from my Guilin trip. Hence, I have become a little bit lazy to write about it because I need to think again when writing about the trip. Anyway, since I have determined to write about the trip, I will complete these Guilin series one by one as planned. Slowly but sure.

After we visited the Merryland Theme Park in Xing'An County, on the next day we rode the coach again for about two hours to get to Yangshuo County.

Monday, 19 September 2011

7.30am Checked out and had breakfast at one of the restaurants at Merryland Resort.

Checking out the souvenir shop at the Merryland Resort.

My husband and I in front of the five-star Merryland Resort.


8.30am Made a move to Yangshuo County by coach.

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 2



The #2 Day Question: If You Are to Do Something for Free for the Rest of Your Life, What Would It Be?

My Answer:

If I am to do something for free for the rest of my life, I would probably be pursuing my passions which are baking, travelling and blogging.


1. I'd be baking and testing recipes every day without the need to think so much on the money spent for the baking ingredients, various good quality utensils/equipment, books, gas and probably courses too.


2. I'd be exploring new places every other month (or week perhaps) with my loved ones - seeing the world together. Sightseeing, enjoying different cultures, meeting new people and tasting local food.


3. If I don't have to worry so much about the so-called 'office' working hours to earn my living - I'd spend more time updating my blog too. There would be no more 'spare time' for blogging. There'd always be blogging time for me, anytime and anywhere. For as long as I want to.

Monday, November 7, 2011

21 Day Journaling Challenge: Day 1

Last week, I committed myself to join Celestine Chua's challenge for the second time. The challenge for this round is 21-Day Journaling Challenge which I personally found suitable and beneficial for my traits. Celestine would post a question to all the Journaling Challenge participants via her blog on daily basis and those who registered are required to answer every question on Celes's blog on daily basis too. On top of this, she suggests all the participants to also keep a record of their answers during the 21-Day Journaling Challenge. This said, without much thinking, my blog would be the perfect avenue to record mine.

A memoir of Celestine and me when we were in Hong Kong, back in October 2010.

I honestly contemplated before joining this challenge given the fact that I would be away to Indonesia for more than a week this month and I might not have internet access there. But, what the heck. I am very keen in taking part at this challenge and will try my best to join in the forum and answer all the question (in her blog) every day. If not, I will catch up when I have the internet access (I hope this is okay, Celes!)

So after a week of waiting period, finally all the participants received the first question that we need to ponder and answer during this challenge.


The #1 Day Question: What Would You Do If You Have 1 Million Dollars?


My Answer:


If I had 1 Million Dollars, as per previously planned in my bucket list, firstly, I’d like to use some of the money to help my husband with the mortgage of our very own first house and buy all the stuff we need to build our dream house.
Secondly, I plan to send some money to my parents in Indonesia so they can purchase insurance (which is quite expensive for older people), get a decent brand new car and have some savings for my little brother’s university fees and their daily life necessities. Thirdly, I’d like to spare some budget for yearly overseas trip with my husband and/or with my parents as I believe that travelling would broaden one’s mind. Lastly, in the mean time, the rest of the money would go to long-term savings deposit/property investments for future use.
By the way, even though I had 1 Million Dollars, I don’t think I would quit working yet since by keep on working I would stay connected with people out there and keep my mind sharp (although I must say that work can be stressful at times).

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Making Banana Chocolate Mini Cupcakes with Kids

It's the long weekend now and I am very grateful for this! We are skipping Monday tomorrow. Yay!

Anyway, I bought two mini cupcake/muffin molds that I have longed for the longest time few days ago, got two kids staying over in our house this weekend and happened to have some ripe bananas in the kitchen. I have actually been planning to entertain my nieces again with some baking sessions after our fruitful first baking session a couple weeks ago. Thus, without much head-scratching and over-thinking, I decided to make some banana mini cupcakes for the kids today. I bake. I frost. The kids decorate. Perfect plan!

Baking with kids: Banana Chocolate Mini Cupcakes.

The girls and I had so much fun today. The banana mini cupcakes turned out pretty good and the chocolate frosting was indeed finger-lickin' good. Seriously, my little niece who helped me decorated the cupcakes with the sugar stars could not stop putting her little fingers into her mouth when she accidentally touched the chocolate frosting.

If you have kids at home and plan to have some fun baking sessions with them, you might want to try this recipe.

Banana Chocolate Mini Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 50 gr Unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 120 gr Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • Vanilla Extract
  • 110 gr Mashed ripe bananas (about two medium bananas)
  • 30 ml Liquid milk
  • 125 gr Flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda

Frosting:

  • 50 gr Unsalted butter, melted
  • 25 gr Cocoa powder
  • 40 ml Liquid milk
  • 150gr Icing Sugar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Sugar stars, for decorations

Tutorial:

  1. Preheat the oven. Combine the flour, baking soda and baking powder in a dry container. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar by using high speed electronic mixer.
  3. Add in egg, vanilla extract, milk and mashed bananas into the butter and sugar mixture. Mix well by using high speed electronic mixer.
  4. Fold the flour into the cupcake batter by using spatula until well combined.
  5. Fill the paper-lined mini cupcake/muffin cups with the cupcake batter until two-thirds full.
  6. Bake the cupcakes at 180 degree Celsius for about 17-20 minutes. Remove to wire racks and cool completely before frosting.
  7. To make the chocolate butter cream frosting: Stir in the cocoa powder and vanilla extract into the melted butter. Alternately add the icing sugar and milk into the melted butter, beating to spreading consistency by using medium speed electronic mixer.
  8. Frost the cupcakes. Decorate. Have fun.
*This recipe makes about 27 mini cupcakes.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Converting Indonesian Driving Licence to Malaysian Driving Licence

I had my Indonesian driving licence (SIM A) converted to (Probationary) Malaysian Driving Licence (Class D) some months ago. All I could remember now is that the conversion processes involved quite a bit of paperwork and took longer time that I thought, as usual. I chose to have a Malaysian driving licence so I could drive in Malaysia without having to carry my valid Indonesian driving licence (SIM) and passport wherever and whenever I drive here. Moreover, I hope when I, unfortunately, happen to do driving offense in Malaysia, I would not get into so much troubles with the traffic police here and pay so much money just because I drive under foreign driving licence.

Here are the overview of three main steps that we need to do to convert the valid Indonesian driving licence (SIM) to Malaysian Driving Licence. These below steps are optional, considering that there are alternative options for foreigners (holding long-term visa) in Malaysia to do all the driving tests at the local Road Transport Department/JPJ offices all over again to get the (Probationary) Malaysian Driving Licence. I skipped the latter choice and was determined to do all the following tedious legal paperwork instead.

1. OBTAIN A DRIVING LICENCE LEGALIZATION LETTER FROM THE INDONESIAN EMBASSY IN KUALA LUMPUR

Indonesians who live in Malaysia and plan to have a Malaysian driving licence need to get a legalization letter issued by the Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur before proceeding with other legal documents submission to the related Malaysia government offices.

Required documents and submission details: Can be found here.
Required working day: One (1) working day
Fee: RM 55

Temporary receipt issued by the Indonesian Embassy. 
This receipt is required to collect the legalization letter on the next day.

Result: A legalization letter stating that the current Indonesian driving licence (SIM) is valid and the applicant is eligible to apply for the Malaysian driving licence.

The legalization letter produced by the Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.

Challenge: Massive queue at the Indonesian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur and two back-and-forth trips are required to get this letter done. Those who do not stay in Kuala Lumpur must be prepared with the travelling distance and potential time consumed. My lesson learned here was that, when my husband asked about the necessary documents to convert my driving licence in the local JPJ office, the officer did not tell us about the importance of this letter. Only when we were ready to submit all the necessary documents to the local JPJ office, we were told that we lacked of one very important statement letter from the Indonesian embassy. So trust me, this letter can't be skipped and must be obtained in the first place.