The Snacks I’ll Be Missing Most

I’ve been told that it’s best not to bring any food items into Australia. So, I won’t be able to indulge in my Stephen James Organics yummies while I’m there! :(

During my trip to Korea, I brought these snacks along:

Stephen James onboard

Yes, I brought my own food onto a budget airline flight. Oops! :D

This time round, I’m gonna miss my all-time favorite: Organic Brownie Bar and Pili Nuts!

An actual brownie vs the Organic Brownie Bar :D

One gets you fat, the other has ‘Living Energy’!

Organic Brownie Bar

Pili Nuts

The brownie bar is really the next best thing to eating an actual brownie! And the pili nuts are super delicious nuts from the Philippines. I hope I can find something as good in Australia!

I don’t simply eat the brownie bars and pili nuts straight from the pack all the time. I will sometimes add them to salads, for instance:

Pili Nuts and Brownie Bar Salad

If you’re not flying to Australia, and you want to get some of these delicious and healthy snacks, click HERE to purchase them online! :)

The Asia Premiere of ‘The Wolverine’ and Meeting Hugh Jackman! :)

The highly anticipated movie, ‘The Wolverine’, will be screened in cinemas here starting 25th July, this Thursday. And… I’ve already watched it! :D All thanks to Scoot and Golden Village for flying me to Seoul to catch the press conference, meet Hugh Jackman, have him sign on my poster, and they even gave me a ticket to the movie premiere. Yes, I am super fortunate! :D

I was one of three bloggers on the trip. The other two are Alvin and Regina. And there were also winners from contests run by Class 95FM, Y.E.S. 93.3FM, Scoot and GV as well. Joining us on the trip were two celebs – Jean Danker (so friendly and hot!) and Lim Peifen (super fair skinned and pretty!)

Winners

Picture from GV Movie Club

We have cute dimples! :D

Me and Pei Fen

Me, Jean Danker and Regina:

Me Jean and Regina

You probably want to know my take on the movie, right? First up, I have to say that I was EXHAUSTED from the long flight to Seoul (with transit in Taipei) and the press conference early in the morning nearly killed me. BUT, I did not fall asleep during the movie, which was screened around 9pm. It was THAT good. Like Hugh said during the press conference, the movie has the action scenes, the romance, the twist in the plot, and lets viewers have a deeper understanding of this character.

The press conference room at Hyatt:

*WOW*

Press Conference Room

So many cameras, I lost count:

So many cameras

Me and Regina

I have to honestly say, though, that there’s perhaps no real need to watch the movie in 3D – nothing will be flying at you. Ha! Just saying. :D

Here’s a trailer on Youtube:

I probably don’t watch enough movies ‘cos the ending really caught me by surprise – I totally had a “Isn’t he the good guy?!” moment. I don’t want to spoil it for you (I’m trying so hard not to give away too much of the plot!) so go watch the movie k! :D

And oh… before the movie screening, there was a performance by a Korean band called ‘Dick Punks’. It just seems like a really strange name for a band and erm… quite unfortunate as well, because I found them rather ‘feminine’. (@_@) But the Korean girls in the audience just went CRAZY! Ok. I shall stop here. Don’t want to receive any death threats. :D

And… Hugh Jackman signed my poster. Hehe! As part of the Singapore ‘contingent’, I got up close to Hugh, and got him to sign a ‘Wolverine’ poster for my giveaway. :D

This is how close he came to all of us:

*I see at least one very excited fan! LOL*

Hugh Jackman

I’m giving away a pair of tickets and a notebook too!!!

Wolverine Giveaway

All you need to do to win 1 of these 3 items is to like and share my facebook post about this wolverine giveaway, and then comment back here on this blogpost with your choice of either the poster, notebook, or pair of tickets PLUS your email address! :)

Contest ends TONIGHT, 23:59hrs! Results to be announced TOMORROW!

Introducing Grace Tan: Your New Shampoo Ad Girl

Don’t worry, I’m not considering a career switch. Just amused at how, in the space of one month, I have accepted two hair product reviews (one from Pantene and one from Silkpro). Come join me on my hair-raising ADventures (hur hur) and see if these products are better than what you are currently using! :)

Hello Kitty blogger

Here’s my pre-treatment hair

First up is Pantene’s Liquid Crystal Shampoo System:

Pantene Liquid Crystal Shampoo System

Pros: Smells really good, helped untangle and moisturize my hair after I got it bleached twice and dyed multiple times [DO NOT do what I did!] :P

Cons: It doesn’t quite make hair color vibrant like it promises to – my new hair color faded a little after a week [not sure if it is due to the off-the-shelf dye pack]

I’m now alternating Pantene’s range with Silkpro’s Hair Fall Control shampoo, Treatment Conditioner and Hair Tonic:

Silkpro

Pros: Despite containing 11 herbs, the shampoo has a mild, pleasant scent and leaves a cool, tingly sensation on the scalp! Perfect for days when the weather is hot and my scalp gets oily and itchy! :D

Cons: The Hair Tonic made my scalp feel warm and prickly. Would have been great if it was cooling like the shampoo instead.

 *Tip: Alternate between two shampoos to keep scalp and hair receptive to each product’s benefits. 

Pink Hair

My hair now – on a good day

Got a good shampoo to recommend? Leave me a comment? :)

Also, vote for me to win at the Singapore Blog Awards 2013. Thanks everybody thanks! :D

Photo Canvas from Canvas Perfection: Capturing Those Precious Moments On Canvas

*Sponsored*

When Joy from Canvas Perfection emailed me and offered to print my photographs on canvas, I was initially at a loss – what would I do with those canvas prints? Then I visited their website and found that a canvas would not look out of place in a living room, it’d, in fact, beautify the room and is more meaningful than a random painting.

Living Room canvas

I selected two photos to be printed on canvas – one’s the photo in my blog banner (at the top of this blog) and the other photo is of my friend Stella gazing at one of her twin boys, Joseph. The mother and child photo was taken sometime in June this year. :)

Stella and Joseph

I sent Joy the photos on Nov 22. Received the canvases about a month after.

Photo Canvas

I believe Stella has never received such a present before. ;) She took the canvas from me and immediately went to show it to her husband. I think it’s a meaningful present that I wouldn’t hesitate to ‘gift’ to another friend in future.

It’s pretty evident that Joseph has been *ahem* growing well these past 6 months. He now looks like this:

Joseph

I think it’d be pretty cool to decorate a kid’s bedroom with canvas prints of him/her at age 1, 2, 3, etc.

Are you thinking about getting some canvas prints yourself? :)

Pros

- Great as gifts!

- Looks great as decorative pieces in your living room – No more boring, white walls!

- Affordable: prices start from S$61

- Comes in many sizes to suit your space requirements

Cons

- Requires very high resolution pictures (hence those taken with your phone cameras are unlikely to make the cut).

- Photos should ideally be pre-edited: No photoshop or touching up of photos was done for my photos after they were sent to Canvas Perfection

- I didn’t know exactly when the canvases would arrive – I was told it’d either be one week or the next. Best to state beforehand if it’s an urgent order or required by a certain date. ;)

My canvas

If you are ready to decorate your home for the new year…

~ Visit CanvasPerfection now ~

*If you’d like to sponsor a product/service, write to me at gracewwg@gmail.com :)

The Most Versatile Chair I Own: The Kherlax!

*sponsored*

A friend and former coachee has quit his job to start his own company (www.seats.sg) *hurray for him* specializing in quality seats for your home and office.

He sent me one of the chairs pictured above (I like the red one) and told me to find out how awesome it is. So I did.

I love the adjustable height (I can lie flat on it for a catnap or sit it upright for a spot of blogging). If you’re watching TV, levels 4 or 5 would be good, any lower and you may fall asleep! :D

I think it is a pretty and practical addition to any living room :)

I was told that among the available colors (black, red, brown and green), red and brown are most popular. And it’s easy to see why.

Yes, I have an apple tree at home – Mum’s idea

It’s great for chilling out at home with a good book, some macarons and tea or maybe a slice of cake or icecream and cookies… *ahem*

I worked on this blogpost while seated on the Kherlax too. Pardon the messy hair – I’m at home, what do you expect? XD

Then when your Hello Kitty-loving, Japanese-wannabe friend comes over, you can seat her and her Hello Kitty plush (of course) on this very cushy Kherlax. Oh wait, said friend is still me. Muahaha.

I suspect your friends will also want to lie on it to watch TV or simply fall asleep on it ‘cos it is just too comfy.

Also, the Kherlax can be used on bay windows, providing you with a comfortable seating area by the window, for you to curl up and chill out.

BUT WAIT

“Isn’t this chair too pricey? I asked my friend. It sure has many uses and I think both kids and adults will love it but I will likely only buy one for my future home. I don’t know many people who will pay $178 for a chair.

Hence, the good folks at Seats.sg have decided that if you are willing to pick up the chair yourself (it’s really very light!), you’ll only need to pay $78. That’s a cost saving of $100 !!!

If, however, you require delivery of this item, it is chargeable at only $15 for unlimited pieces to one location. *Only for this blog’s readers!*

How to order:

1) Go to Seats.sg.

2) Select the Kherlax and quantity you want to order, including other specifications like color.

3) Enter code “workingwithgrace” when prompted to “input promotion code”. Tadah! You’ll get your brand-new Kherlax at a cool $100 discount. *Promotion valid only till 23:59, 16th Dec, 2012.

You’ll thank me for it! ;)

Whether as a versatile piece to add to your home or a Christmas gift to someone you know will appreciate it, or a useful chair to have around when pals come to visit at Christmas or Chinese New Year, the Kherlax will delight.

Own one now.

Additional Information:

* Choice of color is subject to availability – order yours early.

* All chairs will be delivered by 22nd Dec, 2012. In time for Christmas :)

* Self-collection location: 58 Tannery Lane

* Enquiries: promotion@seats.sg

The Casio JE10 Camera is so tiny – Is It Worth Buying?

[Sponsored Review - no monetary compensation received]

When I collected the Casio Exilim JE10 camera, I was shocked at how tiny it is. It is one of the smallest compact cameras I have ever used.

Straight out of the box

Size Comparison with my ezlink card:

I figured it’d sit nicely in my Coach wristlet and I’ll still have space for other items:

Does it pass the blogger’s test?

I was impressed that it comes with a camera jacket which allows you to snap photos without even removing the camera. Photography is usually about capturing that special moment in time – but it’s tough if you’re rummaging in your handbag for that digicam or trying to carefully remove the lens cap from your DSLR. That fleeting moment… is gone.

You can sling this camera around your neck using the camera jacket and turn on the camera and snap photos almost immediately.

This camera is targeted at the female consumer and has female-friendly features such as a ‘make-up function’ and the toggle which helps those with really long nails. BUT, the screw on the base of the camera jacket is difficult for those with long nails to manage – I actually chipped a nail and ended up cutting my nails short (not a bad thing actually, with hindsight).

I brought the camera with me to Johor Bahru on Sunday. Let’s see if it passes the test… *Note: The photos are in their original, raw state and have not been photoshopped or otherwise edited.

With food pictures, there are more misses than hits. If you’re a food blogger, or someone who loves snapping photos of everything you eat, then this camera is likely not for you.

If you love snapping pictures of yourself or those you love, then yes, this camera does the job well, is light, and will sit nicely in your pockets too (if you decide not to use the camera jacket).

Update: I brought the camera with me on a staycation at Oasia Hotel, Singapore. Read the blogpost to find out if I’ll bring the camera with me on other holidays! :)

The Casio JE 10 – Good Enough For Holidays?

Ultimately, remember…

*Update 31/10/12: One picture has been removed as the Exilim/Omy folks believe it’s out-of-focus.  (@_@)

If you’d like to find out how to remove the camera from the jacket without chipping your nails, watch this video: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151148194519263 :)

Doraemon Exhibition in Hong Kong – Dreams Come True

Read Chapter 1 and Chapter 2

Chapter 3: Dreams

This trip to Hong Kong for the Doraemon Exhibition is indeed a dream come true. On top of a relaxing stay at the Marco Polo Gateway Hotel which is linked to Harbour City, us bloggers got to check out what the mega-mall has to offer in terms of shopping and dining options!

Before Marco Polo Gateway Hotel, I’ve yet to stay in such spacious accommodation in a Hong Kong hotel! I loved the huge bathrooms and sleeping on a big bed with 4 pillows all to myself (4 pillows!!!). Talk about sweet dreams! And waking up to an international buffet breakfast spread was just icing on the cake!

As you can see above, I had no complaints whatsoever about the food available. In fact, I looked forward to the yummy omelettes every morning! At the omelette station, you can choose the ingredients you want to include in your omelette and the chef will cook it for you. I define pure bliss as biting into an omelette with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms and salmon (YES, SALMON!), with some cheese in-between too! YUMMY! There’s also capsicum, bacon, ham, etc which you can choose to add into your omelette. :D

And the staff, especially Ms Katie in my picture, were professional and also friendly. Katie actually brought over a map of Hong Kong for us when we asked her for recommendations about places we should visit. She really went the extra mile in service (all she had to do, really, was serve us tea/coffee and remove the used plates) and I hope her boss reads this! :)

The fact that our hotel was linked to Harbour City meant also that we could shop till the stores closed, and just lug our purchases back to the hotel lobby. :D How convenient!

The mall is so big that I won’t be able to introduce all the stores to you but here are some that we went into on the first day:

Faces for cosmetics & PageOne for stationery and gifts!

And where food is concerned, Harbour City definitely delights!

I loved that they have Agnès B Cafes! I thought these could only be found in Taiwan! Their cakes are pure delish! And so pretty too, don’t you think?

The amazing part about this mega-mall is that there are not only many directories available, plus information counters, but also special stations where you can touch the screen to speak with their service staff who will show you, on the screen, where your current location is and how to get to the place you want to go to. Where the use of technology is concerned, our local malls pale in comparison with Harbour City.

And some other fun things we did:

At night, you can also board a ferry nearby- I guarantee you’ll love the ride:

Right now, I’m sure you want to head over to Hong Kong for the fantastic Doraemon Exhibition and to check out the mega-mall that is Harbour City. You deserve the vacation! Besides, getting there, as they say, is a piece of cake!

To find out more about the Exhibition and Harbour City:

http://www.harbourcity.com.hk

http://www.facebook.com/harbourcity

http://twitter.com/hkharbourcity

Doraemon Exhibition in Hong Kong – Friends from the Future

<- Read Chapter 1 here

Chapter 2: Future

Doraemon is a robot cat from the future and his actual date of birth is 3rd Sept, 2112 – this year is the start of the 100 year countdown to his birthday! :)

From 14 Aug to 16 Sept 2012, Harbour City (Hong Kong) will be hosting the “100 Years Before the Birth of Doraemon” Exhibition.

Charmaine and I got to visit the Bo-logne Cafe, the Gallery and the Exhibition – all of which blew us away.

Join us and step in through the famous “Anywhere Door”…

Doraemon's Anywhere Door

Right into the transformed BO-LO’GNE Cafe…

Fill your tummy with food then check out the Gallery by the Harbour where you can ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ over various gadgets, and take many pictures!

Gallery by the Harbour

Before you view the Exhibition, take in a deep breath of air first. Because the arresting sight will take your breath away!

100 Doraemon figures are available for your photography and viewing pleasure!

And here’s the crowd streaming in for the opening ceremony on 14 Aug, 2012:

I’m so glad we got a media preview first! :D

Preview of Doraemon Exhibition

And here I am with my Doraemon bag. A couple actually stopped me in Zara to ask me where I’d bought my bag from. When I said “Singapore”, they looked disappointed. Seems the people in Hong Kong really love Doraemon A LOT!

And at the opening ceremony…

A photo with the pretty ladies:

The party continues all the way till nighttime! Can you believe it?!

Ask me where I’ll go if I have the Anywhere Door before me!

The exhibition again, of course! :D

Hurry and book your tickets to Hong Kong now! The Doraemon figures won’t be here forever. You can catch them from now till 16th September only! And no, they are not for sale. I asked! :D

The final blogpost about the awesome mega-mall that is Harbour City: http://workingwithgrace.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/doraemon-exhibition-in-hong-kong-dreams-come-true/

Doraemon Exhibition in Hong Kong – Friendships Forged

Who knew that one blogpost would put me on a plane to Hong Kong for a 4D3N sponsored trip in celebration of Doraemon’s birth – 100 years early? :D I’m attaching the cartoon from that particular blogpost and you can click here to view the entire winning blogpost… Lots of thanks to Harbour City for the kind sponsorship and Omy.sg for organizing the contest! :) The campaign theme for the entire celebration is ‘Friendship, Future & Dreams‘. So the first in this series of blogposts is entitled ‘Friendship‘!

Chapter 1: Friendship

I had never met the blogger who was supposed to go to Hong Kong with me prior to the trip. Thankfully, she turned out to be a great shopping buddy and oh-so-funny to photograph. You can read her winning blogpost here. She is 22, works at a maid cafe and has 3 names: Charmaine, Kiyo and Jae. <- She doesn’t have split personalities, though, and I simply call her Charmaine. :D

It was great going shopping with Charmaine ‘cos she NEVER gets tired and squeals in delight at every shop or brand name she recognizes (and she does know a lot of them, especially the Japanese brands)!

And if you visit Hong Kong, you definitely have to go to Harbour City in Tsim Sha Tsui (just a 5 minute walk from the MTR station!)

Harbour City certainly lives up to its reputation as a shopping paradise located on over 2 million square feet of prime real estate, with a wide variety of over 450 shops! We had to consult directories every so often to find out where we were within the mega mall – the largest in Hong Kong!

And even before us new shopping buddies managed to hit the stores and walk away with our first shopping bag, our new friends from Harbour City gave us fantastic goodie bags…

Us bloggers were made to feel really welcome indeed and we have to thank Ms Season Chan (the Assistant Promotions and Advertising Officer) for making us feel really at home with her tips on which stores and cafes to visit, and in general, for being an awesome host. She also brought us out for a fantastic dinner the evening before our return flight to Singapore too! :)

Season also helped us take this jump shot, in front of many curious onlookers… (>_<)

It was such a fun trip – I’d do it again in a heartbeat!

Doraemon 100 years before birth celebration

Read on for the next 2 blogposts – about the futuristic “100 Years Before the Birth of Doraemon” Exhibition and the dream shopping and leisure destination that is Harbour City! :D Enjoy!

Blogpost 2: http://workingwithgrace.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/doraemon-exhibition-in-hong-kong-friends-from-the-future/

Blogpost 3: http://workingwithgrace.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/doraemon-exhibition-in-hong-kong-dreams-come-true/

*This trip was made possible because of the good people from Harbour City, Hong Kong (thank you Karen and Season) and Omy.sg (thanks, Alvin!) :D

I Ran A Half (Spa) Marathon at Hado Beauty Wellness, Sophia Brow House & Porn’s Restaurant

Two Sundays ago, I went for a spa marathon organized by the folks at Street Directory.com.

The flag-off point was at Hado Beauty Wellness at 26A Liang Seah Street which is a stone’s throw from Bugis Junction!

Hado Beauty Wellness facial

The most relaxing start to a marathon I have ever encountered:

I dare say this is one of the best facials I’ve had so far. The therapist did a “spring cleaning” for my face as I don’t do facials religiously nor regularly as I should. She stuck plastic (or paper? I don’t know which) onto my face. They resemble the oil control film ladies use for oily T-zones and noses. What happened was they had the effect of waxing strips and removed the majority of the whiteheads on my face! It was painful, but oh so worth it! My skin felt very smooth after the Gua Sha facial.

Here are the products used for the Gua Sha facial:

Gua Sha facial products

I’ll not traumatize you with my post-facial complexion but the subsequent result was good!

And after the facial, another blogger and I went for a pedicure at Sophia Brow House next door. Despite its name, it does more than just brows. Services include manicures, pedicures, face threading, mole removal, eyelash extensions, etc.

I chose an OPI pedicure using a rich red polish. Because my skin’s considerably dark, pastel or lighter nail colors don’t suit me well. I’ll usually pick a dark red, purple or brown for my nails.

pedicure

And the marathon ended for me after lunch at Porn’s restaurant – the restaurant started by celebrity Pornsak and given a suggestive name which has raised more than a few eyebrows.

Porn's Restaurant menu and serviette

I had a Kway Tiao Pla (Thai noodle with clear fish soup) that costs $9.90 and a Nam Ga Jeab (Thai roselle with lime) priced at $3.90. The food’s decent enough, though I would have tried something spicier if I wasn’t nursing a sore throat.

Thai Roselle with Lime

It was a refreshing end to half a day of pampering. While one other blogger continued the marathon and headed for a massage, I had to run off to my next appointment! :)

If YOU would like some pampering too, here’s some good news – For this blog’s readers: try the Gua Sha facial at only $68 (U.P$280) Call 6338 4532 to book an appointment slot. :)

Sophia Brow House also has a number of promotions available. View them here: http://www.sophiabrowhouse.com/services.html