Planning A Dream Wedding Online With Bridestory

Bridestory

[ Picture credit: ANSEINA BRIDES / Bridestory ]

Wedding planning is very much a chore for me, so I’m glad friends have stopped asking THAT question – “When are you getting married ah?” The answer will always be “SOON”. Put simply, I’m procrastinating because there are just too many things to consider. I guess this is why many people just give up and shell out good money for a wedding planner instead. (@_@)

So it’s pretty interesting how Bridestory wrote to me recently and introduced me to their online platform which helps couples plan the perfect wedding… online! (And nope… no talk of wedding sponsorship just yet. Haha!)

The website has a really ‘clean’ layout, is very easy to navigate and reminds me of Pinterest actually! :D Have a look:

Bridestory

Established in April 2014, Bridestory is a leading online wedding vendor which has a strong social media presence among Indonesian and international audiences. Their focus is on building an advanced wedding platform that connects engaged couples with wedding vendors around the world. Cool eh? We will no longer have to rely on recommendations from friends and relatives, and can instead select from the best vendors around the world! :D

And I guess there are different kinds of brides – some are the bochup (anything goes) kind, and there are the Bridezilla ones, and many others in-between.

In fact, I am reminded of a YouTube video I watched this week – an interview with Hillary Clinton. And one of the things she shared was about her marriage to Bill. She’d actually bought her wedding dress off a rack just the day before the wedding. :D That sounds pretty incredible (and rather cool too) but quite unthinkable for couples these days.

Usually, lots of prior planning is involved, from selecting that perfect dress to getting it altered to fit well, and of course, co-ordination of the bridesmaids outfits too.

And yes, besides wedding gowns, I’ve found bridesmaid dresses on Bridestory too:

Bridestory bridesmaid dresses

[ Picture Credit: INTOXIQUETTE BRIDESMAIDS / Bridestory ]

One can easily compare prices among vendors, check out their portfolios online, and also send them any queries. I’ll most certainly tell my photographer pals to get their businesses listed on Bridestory while it’s still relatively new in Singapore. :)

And what I love most about this platform is that my options are not restricted to just those wedding vendors located in Singapore – I’m also able to check out vendors in other parts of the world, e.g. Australia, Japan, Taiwan, etc. And there are vendors for everything from Catering to the Honeymoon, while still working within one’s budget of an affordable wedding or a splash-out premium one!

Photoshoot in Japan, anyone? :)

Bridestory Wedding Photographer

[ Photo Credit: MOMOYAMA CANDID / Bridestory ]

Perhaps I’ll share with you my top picks among the local wedding vendors in another post. Stay tuned! :D

Book Review: Penguins Can’t Fly by Jason Kotecki

Penguins Can't Fly by Jason Kotecki

It looks like a book for children, what with the too-cute illustrations and how it’s just the right size as a picture book for kids. But this book ‘Penguins Can’t Fly’ is quite a page-turner. Jason Kotecki is an artist, author and professional speaker who has selected 40 “rules” to include in this book, and he encourages us to break them all, and offers good reasons why this should be done too! And I’ll start by breaking a few rules myself:

“if you obey all the rules you miss all the fun” – katharine hepburn

This book might seem less-than-serious to snobbish readers, but it offers up pearls of wisdom in a most palatable manner. I won’t be able to reproduce all those pages here (some rules are not meant to be broken, unfortunately) but here are some takeaways I got from reading this book:

  1. Every single day is a holiday. It’s just that most days, what to celebrate is up to you.
  2. Pay attention to what your inner child says.
  3. Go ahead and eat dessert first – that’s what you promised yourself as a kid; that when you’re all grown-up, you’ll eat dessert before your meal. *reaches for pint of ice cream* Penguins Can't Fly by Jason Kotecki
  4. Celebrate playfulness. Dance in the rain like a child, hop into a puddle instead of skirting around it!
  5. It’s “okay to consume pizza, cake, or wine for breakfast”
  6. Mondays don’t stink – it’s your job. Change your attitude or change your job. “The REAL key to happiness (and so-called work-life balance) is not figuring out how to work less, but doing more work that matters.
  7. Should you be obsessed about being busy, or appearing to be busy, when you can proudly say “I haven’t been busy at all. I’m just taking life as it comes, enjoying it one moment at a time”? :D
  8. Question all those rules.
  9. Write your own definition of success.
  10. Worried about wrinkles? Well… “no one ever died at the age of one hundred looking like a nineteen-year-old” !!!
  11. “If a dream is realistic, it’s not really a dream. It’s a to-do. If you want to be realistic, be realistic about your fears. After all, most of the things you worry about will never happen.”
  12. Why keep the fine china locked away till there’s a special occasion? Every day is special. Think about that family member who has passed on. Wouldn’t you give just about anything to have one more dinner with that person?
  13. Fact: We will all die with stuff on our to-do list.

And these are just some of the things that Jason shares in this really cool book. You should head out to a bookstore and get a copy, or order one online. I highly recommend that you read it. :)

Penguins Can't Fly by Jason Kotecki

What was most striking for me was that point about keeping the tableware till that fine day when there’s a special occasion. What if that day never comes? What if I die before that day comes? What if the house gets burnt down together with everything in it? Sobering thought, no? Why not understand that every day is special and worth celebrating, as today is a gift and tomorrow is not guaranteed?

~

This book retails at S$26.12 (before GST) in all good bookstores :)

Review: Harper Lee’s ‘Go Set A Watchman’

Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee

I guess Harper Lee has led the life many aspiring novelists can only dream of – publish a book and have it sell over 30 million copies, and have (more than) enough to last a lifetime. Plus, what a lasting legacy the book ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ has. For sure, any other novel that she writes after this will likely pale in comparison (oops), but Harper Lee now gives us ‘Go Set A Watchman’. *wink*

‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ fans can read this second book without fear. Instead of destroying your impressions about the characters, you’ll get a greater insight into what Scout and Atticus really think about racial issues. But… if you have trouble coming to terms with reading about a now-old Atticus Finch (72 years old and almost crippled by rheumatoid arthritis) and a Scout who is quite comfortable doing the unimaginable – SMOKING – then you’d best not read this book. :D

I also came to realize that I missed the character Dill / Charles Baker Harris. I love reading about the things that Dill, Scout and Jem did as kids and the part about Dill dressing up as the “Holy Ghost” in ‘Go Set A Watchman’ was laugh-out-loud-FUNNY! I’ll not spoil it for you… you can go read about it yourself.

I’m not sure if ‘Go Set A Watchman’ was indeed, as Wikipedia says, the original text that should have been published instead of ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’. But how different things would have been! I’m not sure if Harper Lee would still have gone on to receive “the Pulitzer Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and numerous other literary awards and honours” as the book’s cover sleeve so proudly shares.

Free postcards at the back of the book :D

Go Set A Watchman postcards Harper Lee

My biggest disappointment in reading this book is finding out that Jem had simply keeled over and died one day. Presumably, he had a heart problem, just like his mother had. But we do get to read about Henry Clinton a.k.a. Hank. Hank is Scout’s suitor and when they are together, we get something to laugh about. From the late-night swim in the river (they were caught by spying eyes and said to have been swimming naked, when they were in fact clothed. Atticus’ response was pretty epic and super funny!) to the flashback to Scout’s schooldays when she showed up for a Commencement Dance with a pair of “false bosoms” which did not stay in place during the dance (what Hank did thereafter led to a hilarious situation in school). You’ll really have to read about these instances!

And, of course, there’s no avoiding issues about race and racial tensions in this book.

If more people are like Scout, we’d have fewer outbreaks of racism all around the world. Scout says on p179 that “They were poor, they were diseased and dirty, some were lazy and shiftless, but never in my life was I given the idea that I should despise one, should fear one, should be discourteous to one, or think that I could mistreat one and get away with it”. I would attribute this to Atticus’ not having a second marriage to a white woman and instead, employing a black woman (Calpurnia) to be the cook and also help in raising his two children.

As Scout’s Uncle Jack a.k.a. Dr. Finch says, “You’re color blind, Jean Louise… You always have been, you always will be. The only differences you see between one human and another are differences in looks and intelligence and character and the like. You’ve never been prodded to look at people as a race, and now that race is the burning issue of the day, you’re still unable to think racially. You see only people.” 

We definitely need more people who are color blind when it comes to race. And I do believe that this book still serves a purpose in reinforcing this point, especially when Scout begins to think that Atticus might be a racist and lashes out at him.

Dr Finch explains to Scout that “He (Atticus) was letting you break your icons one by one. He was letting you reduce him to the status of a human being”. And isn’t this what Harper Lee is trying to do for us readers too? *wink*

All in all, I think this book is a good read. Not as mindblowing-ly awesome as ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ has been, but it was great reading about Atticus and Jean Louise again, and the central message about racial issues remains. And perhaps some of us just need to hear it again from Harper Lee. :)

As Dr Finch says, on p264, “Every man’s island, Jean Louise, every man’s watchman, is his conscience.” What does your conscience say to you today about the way racial issues are playing out in your country, in the world you live in, and your response to those issues? :)

Park Hotel Alexandra: Crystal Club Lounge

Park Hotel Alexandra Crystal Club Lounge

I’ve had a most enjoyable stay in Park Hotel Alexandra’s Crystal Club room (click on the link to check out my review) and the Crystal Club Lounge is part of the experience. Located on the 19th floor as well, the lounge offers a quiet setting and great views. I love that there are only a few people at the lounge each time I visit. :D

Park Hotel Alexandra Crystal Club Lounge

Park Hotel Alexandra’s Crystal Club Lounge has a panoramic view that I think you’ll love too. So go check it out if you get the chance. :) And complementary hors d’oeuvres are served at the lounge from 530pm to 730pm* while light refreshments and non-alcoholic drinks are available throughout the day.

*During those 2 hours in the evening, you can drink your fill of the alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and nibble on some of the fruit, cheese and cake. I’d recommend couples to book a staycation in a Crystal Club room and enjoy these perks. I sure had a great time chatting with him over drinks. Too often, we are consumed by work and don’t spend quality time together just chatting with each other over drinks and taking in a scenic view at the same time. :D

Park Hotel Alexandra Crystal Club Lounge

Park Hotel Alexandra staff have impressed me during this visit:

  1. I wanted to head downstairs to the lobby to meet Feby from Febspantry as she’d some cupcakes for me. Alan exited from one of the lifts and I stepped right in, but alas, the elevator was heading upwards instead. And Alan waited for the next lift with me and even apologized for not reacting fast enough in helping me to stop the previous lift (totally not his fault). :D
  2. Sabrina did a great job in the morning, chatting with guests as they waited for an available table for breakfast. *Tip: Head downstairs for breakfast (at The Carvery) EARLY if you don’t want to end up queuing.
  3. Eileen was the only one attending to all the Crystal Club guests during the evening when we had our (free) drinks. When I was eating the coleslaw, she came over with a fresh tray of lemon meringue tarts and offered to replace the one I had taken – she said they taste better when cold.

Park Hotel Alexandra Crystal Club Lounge

After which, she made sure to come by our table, address us by our last names, and ensured that all was well. She also offered me Bailey’s and gin & tonic, and even brought us a bowl of cashew nuts because it seemed like we were happy with our drinks and weren’t going for more food. :D

Free drinks, good service and a great view. What more can one ask for?

Park Hotel Alexandra Crystal Club Lounge

~

As for breakfast, it was not at the Crystal Club Lounge during my stay. We headed downstairs for breakfast with all the other hotel guests, at The Carvery. *Breakfast at the Club Lounge (for Club guests) will commence in September 2015.

Park Hotel Alexandra Buffet Breakfast

As with most hotels, there’s an omelette station which serves decent omelettes. The siu mai and pau are pretty good too! But I love the pastries the most! I actually neglected to take a picture of the pastries because I was happily enjoying them! :D

We had a workout session at the gym and also a swim in the hotel’s infinity pool before breakfast, and we were famished. Thankfully, the food did not disappoint. Some angmoh ladies sat at the table next to ours and even they were impressed by the breakfast options.

The infinity pool in front of the restaurant…

Park Hotel Alexandra infinity pool

This staycation was one of the most memorable ones we’ve had (that’s not us in the picture by the way). I’d love to head back here again soon. :) A swim in that pool first thing in the morning is pretty invigorating. You can admire the surroundings without being in a pool that’s too crowded. ;)

Park Hotel Alexandra – My Crystal Club Room Review :)

What I love most about Park Hotel Alexandra has to be its superb location. If you’re a foodie, you won’t have to venture far for good food. Within the hotel itself is The Carvery on level 7, IKEA is just next door (Swedish meatballs, anyone?), Anchorpoint and Alexandra Food Centre are just across the road, and there are a number of old-school bakeries nearby.

Also, to get your sporting goods, Queensway Shopping Centre is across the road as well. If you didn’t bring your gym gear, just head over to Queensway Shopping Centre to get a set then pop back into the hotel’s gym:

Brand-new gym that you’ll love… It’s next to the pool too. Great views!

Park Hotel Alexandra gym

*Here’s a tip for you: Queensway Shopping Centre is a place many of us locals go to for sportswear as there are so many stores there selling everything from Nalgene bottles to football jerseys and running shoes. However, there is a store at the (often-overlooked) basement that has a signboard stating ‘Queensway Sports Warehouse Sale’. The prices here are likely the lowest in the entire complex. :) I’ve bought 2 pairs of Nike shoes here on our previous visit. And he couldn’t resist either…

Queensway Shopping Centre

His Nike purchase (S$79) from this warehouse sale, and from Pedro (S$57) at Anchorpoint:

Queensway Shopping Centre and Anchorpoint

*And oh, when you’re at Queensway Shopping Centre, you can try the laksa which is supposed to be linked to the famous Katong Laksa? We had that for supper *oops*

~

Park Hotel Alexandra opened its doors to guests in June 2015, has 442 guestrooms and suites, and is “designed in natural woods, earthy shades and prints that embrace the botanical theme and provide a relaxed and tranquil atmosphere for guests”. I have to agree. I felt right at home here. The only downside of being so new is that it can get a bit difficult to lock/unlock the door.

There are 6 room types: Superior, Deluxe, Premier, Crystal Club, Executive Suite and Park Suite. I stayed in a Crystal Club room and I must say I love the view from the 19th floor! My room (1923) overlooks the hotel pool too! :D

 Park Hotel Alexandra crystal club room

The toilet features a standing shower with a rainshower, and comes stocked with amenities any business or leisure traveler will require.

Park Hotel Alexandra toilet

Park Hotel Alexandra toiletries

For your reading pleasure, there’s a copy of The Straits Times, TIME and Fortune magazines within the room too. The cupcakes were sent to me by Febspantry. :D

Park Hotel Alexandra

Why stay in a Crystal Club room? You get to enjoy perks like late check-out at 3pm, light refreshments and non-alcoholic beverages at the Club Lounge throughout the day (very useful if you have work to catch up on), complimentary use of the club meeting room (one hour per stay), 20% off dining at The Carvery, personalized check-out, etc.

The Coffee Belt at the hotel’s lobby offers barista coffee and artisan teas, together with gourmet wraps and homemade pastries. I haven’t tried them since the F&B at the Crystal Club Lounge is complimentary :DPark Hotel Alexandra The Coffee Belt

~ Soft-launch Promotion ~

Stay a minimum of 2 nights and enjoy 30% off Deluxe rooms, plus 20% off F&B offerings for in-house guests at The Carvery and Aqua Luna. Valid till 31 August 2015. Book via http://www.parkhotelgroup.com/alexandra

Park Hotel Alexandra: Meat Lovers Will Adore ‘The Carvery’ on Level 7

Park Hotel Alexandra The Carvery lunch

I enjoyed a lunch buffet at The Carvery during my staycation at Park Hotel Alexandra last weekend, and I have to say that the food’s pretty good! Unlike other buffet places which try to impress you with a staggering variety of food, The Carvery focuses on quality instead. :)

The first thing you see upon entering The Carvery is the 3-metre long meat carving station. During my visit, there was roast chicken, beef and lamb. We were bowled over by the well-seasoned, tender and juicy roast chicken that we had second helpings. :D

Park Hotel Alexandra meat carving station

Depending on when you visit, you might be treated to beef prime rib, pork knuckle, New Zealand roasted leg of lamb, etc all roasted and sliced before your eyes! I also spotted one diner happily slicing off a big chunk of the chicken when the chef had gone back into the kitchen for a bit, presumably to supervise the cooking going on inside. :D :D :D

After selecting the meats, you can then pair them with any of the 5 different fine salts, house-made Anchovy and Truffle butters (*available during dinner), and a myriad of sauces. It’s probably something unique to Park Hotel Alexandra, and The Carvery in particular – any one kind of food can come with a mind-boggling variety of sauces to go with it. Take mustard, for instance…

So many kinds!!!

 Park Hotel Alexandra mustards for meat

It’s the same with the salads: you get to choose from a range of extra virgin olive oils. Good luck finding your favorite! :D

Park Hotel Alexandra The Carvery salad dressing

And when you are back at your table, don’t forget to check out the custom-made designer Laguiole steak knives from France. At The Carvery, they take the meats they serve very seriously, it seems.

*Psst… The restaurant is next to the rooftop swimming pool and the sunset bar Aqua Luna so get a table with a nice view of the pool if you can. *wink*

Besides the meats served at The Carvery, there are side dishes which have been carefully selected to complement the meats: look out for Yorkshire pudding (*available during dinner), Lyonnaise potatoes, Vichy carrots, Sauerkraut, smoked eggplant, etc.

While there’s no sashimi (which is my favorite item at buffets), there’s some seafood on ice: chilled Tiger prawns and Canadian black mussels. You’ll also get shucked oysters at dinner…

Park Hotel Alexandra seafood on ice

For the pasta lovers, there’s a pasta station where you’ll get 3 choices of pasta (spaghetti, farfalle, or linguini) and 2 classic sauces (Pomodoro or Aglio Olio) and you’ll get your pasta cooked a la minute. I didn’t taste the pasta during my visit as it was cooked in large quantities to cater to the guests invited to someone’s birthday celebration hosted within the restaurant.

But you won’t want to miss the wood-fired pizza – the pizzas are all freshly made here. Pretty cool huh?

Park Hotel Alexandra wood-fired pizza station

As for dessert, there’s fresh fruit, brownies, blueberry cake, Crème brûlée, mango pudding, etc.

And to sum up my lunch buffet experience here, I have to say it was really satisfying and that I’ll definitely recommend it to meat lovers. Prices below if you’re interested :)

Park Hotel Alexandra The Carvery dessert

~ Prices ~

Lunch (daily) at S$38++, Dinner at S$52++ (Sun to Thurs), S$62++ (Fri & Sat)

Opening hours: 12pm – 3pm, 6pm – 10pm

Seating Capacity: 100 indoor and 40 outdoor

Reservations: 6828 8880

Jamaica Blue @ The Star Vista: More Than Just Coffee :)

Jamaica Blue The Star Vista

I love cafes which serve all-day breakfast. You probably do too, no? :D And even though Jamaica Blue is at The Star Vista, where I go to for church services, I’ve never thought I’d step into a “coffee place” as I don’t drink coffee. But as I found out today, upon the fiancé’s invite, Jamaica Blue serves more than just coffee.

I ordered the Frittata Breakfast (S$8.90, before the add-ons) you see above. I’d actually selected two add-ons (mushrooms and avocado), otherwise it’d be a less crowded plate. :D I’m not a big fan of the Frittata – didn’t quite like the texture as the egg inside is kinda rubbery. But I have to say that I love the mushrooms – quite a generous serving of the tasty shrooms for just S$3.

As for him… he had the Classic Breakfast (S$15.90)

Jamaica Blue The Star Vista

Hashbrowns were ok, poached eggs could have done with a bit of seasoning, ham was too salty and tomatoes were alright. But we were famished after our mooncake workshop in the morning. So it was a most satisfying lunch at Jamaica Blue. Hehe!

The customer service was decent as well – this is important because bad attitudes can destroy even the best impressions of good food in a cafe or restaurant. I suspect I’ll be back here again soon! :D

1 Vista Exchange Green

#01-32 The Star Vista

Tel: 6694 4592

Interview with Feby from Febspantry

Febs Pantry

I’ve been very impressed with Feby’s creations since I got to know about the Febspantry instagram account after a fellow blogger posted a picture of a cupcake bouquet. Who knew that a simple cake could be ‘dressed up’ to look even prettier than an actual bouquet of flowers?! Here comes the problem: How does one cut up a cake that the baker spent 4 to 6 hours decorating? (@_@)

I’m hoping to order one from Feby soon, for my birthday (and his) :D Prices to follow below…

1) Your cake creations are absolutely gorgeous! Where do you get your inspiration for the cake designs e.g. the one with a seaside design or those popular floral ones?

For me, nature is the best inspiration. And of course, thanks to technology I can browse any information that I want to know about.

2) How long did you take to learn and perfect these designs, and how long do you take to hand-pipe those flowers for a whole cake now?

I think learning is long life process and there is always room for improvement. Every design is unique and beautiful in its own way. For flowers decoration, it takes about 4 – 6 hours (for single tier cake) – not including baking.

3) How did you get started with baking and do you have a full-time job now (or before this)?

Curiosity brought me into this passion. I’ve never learned professionally and this was not a hobby as well, just a curiosity at first and the more I explore, the more it became my passion.

Currently, I’m working for a non-profit organisation during the day.

4) What’s next for your business – Retail shop? Cookbook? Baking classes?

Professional Kitchen / Studio – I want to keep focusing on “made to order basis”.

5) What do you love most about baking?
I can express my wildest imagination and ideas into a cake and its decor, so I can deliver my edible artwork to my customers and inspire many.

~

The ordering process:
1) Contact Feby via Whatsapp 85226822 [to consult about the date and cake details] *Tell Feby you read this blogpost :D
2) Receive confirmation of the order
3) Make full payment in advance via bank transfer

Self-collection or delivery [additional charges may apply]

Price range for these baked goodies:
Cookies $24 – $27/box – Seasonal
Cupcakes $60/dozen – $84/dozen
Cakes? $120 – $290* [depend on the size, flavour and design]
*price is for single tier 6″ and 8″ cake – upsize is available

~

Update:

Febspantry Cupcakes

I’ve tried 2 cupcakes from Febspantry. In case you are wondering, the talented baker’s name, Feby, is pronounced just like ‘Phoebe’. *wink* And the buttercream used for those beautiful floral designs is very light and amazed me because I’d thought it’d be sweet, but it isn’t. The muffin at the bottom is moist and quite delicious.

You don’t have to be afraid of the cream being too dense and cloying, or overly sweet, because it’s none of that. To me, the cream seems… HEALTHY. :D No, seriously. Go try it. And if you’re one of those Instagram addicts, well, Feby’s creations are always Instagram-worthy.

Things I’d Do If Born A Guy

During today’s makan session with my personal trainer, one of the topics that came up was the impending birth of his child, and how he thinks he’ll never be able to fully understand the pain women go through during childbirth and even the discomfort we face during our menstrual cycles.

He says he feels really fortunate that he’s born male. Hmm… I had to agree that there are definitely perks to being a guy, and that I wouldn’t mind being born male actually. :P

Told the fiancé about this and he said he’s interested in finding out what I’d do as a guy, as he might be inspired to try some things too. I’m not sure if he will, but it’s always such a nice feeling to have your man interested in finding out your thoughts and opinions – at least that’s something I appreciate. :D

So here are some things I’d do as a guy – I’m not saying I don’t like being female, or that I’d take steps to change that fact, but one can always wonder at the possibilities of being in someone else’s shoes, no?

#1: Go Backpacking Round The World… Solo

I’m not saying that I cannot do that as a female, just that it’d be less dangerous if I’m male, no? And way more convenient too, as guys can pee into bottles if need be.

I’d venture into the world with just a decent, not-too-flashy camera with video-recording capabilities, and maybe a laptop too. I’ll find work along the way to pay for my expenses. I’ll blog on the go and definitely get a book published when I’m back, or even before I get back. I can easily send a manuscript to the publisher while I’m overseas, and arrive back in time for the book launch. :D

And if you’re wondering why I’d like to travel solo… well, it makes a person more independent, more willing to chat with strangers, gives one more freedom to roam about without having to care about someone else’s preferences, and offers a lot of ‘me time’ for reflection and introspection.

Someone once wrote in his book that we should all do two things in our lifetime, the first of which is to drop everything and take off on a whim, and the second… is something I’ve forgotten. :D :D :D I have accomplished what I remember though… I took off on a trip to Japan on my own in May/June. The airfare was about 6 times more expensive than what I paid in July/August (which was planned in advance).

But it’s about being impulsive, seizing life by the horns, following your heart… and unfortunately, spending a lot of money. LOL!

Mind you, there is a distinct difference between travelling and tourism. Most of us are tourists – we do research before our trip, go armed with travel guidebooks, visit the tourist spots, eat at the recommended food places, take the obligatory tourist photos, and most importantly, have our return flight tickets booked.

Travellers don’t have a planned itinerary and they do not know when they’ll return. This might cause some people to freak out, but it really appeals to me because there’s so much FREEDOM! :D

#2: Learn A Martial Art… And Be Really Good At It

It’ll definitely support #1 – always good to know some self-defence moves in case one gets mugged.

Also, I’d want to have 8-pack abs just like my trainer, ‘cos it gives one some serious bragging rights. Muahaha.

#3: Go To Bible College… And Be A Damn Good Pastor

*The reason I’m using the words “damn good” is just to prove a point: I’ve been really impressed by the oratorical skills of our local pastors.

And have you wondered why the senior pastors of mega churches (or just about any other church) in Singapore are male? Pastor Prince from New Creation Church, Pastor Lawrence Khong from FCBC, and Pastor Kong Hee from City Harvest. All male. The twelve apostles. Also male.

I’m in awe of how these pastors can capture the attention of their congregation every Sunday. Sundays are usually when many people in Singapore sleep till a little later, and if they have to head to church, especially on those cold, rainy days, can be prone to dozing off. Hurhur.

#4: Save A Lot Of Money… Donate Most Of It, And Adopt A Dog

If you don’t already know, being a woman is costly. We spend a lot more than men do on daily necessities. Just imagine how much money you’ll save if you don’t have to buy bras, sanitary pads, tampons, makeup, skincare, facial treatment packages, manicure/pedicure packages, beauty supplements, etc!

If I’m a guy, I’d save all that money, donate it to SPCA, and adopt a dog. Folks, don’t buy pets. Pet shops are gonna hate me for this but it has to be said: Adopt, don’t buy.

Why get a dog though? Besides it being man’s best friend, the dog’s gonna do me a favor by making me go out for walks every single day. People these days are getting lazier and fatter. And some people even “invest” in motorized bikes, skate scooters and the like… ‘cos walking is too mainstream?! I suppose they are unafraid of losing their mobility ‘cos they can just buy motorized wheelchairs in future?

And I think dogs have so much to teach us. For one, it teaches us how to respond to family members when they return home. Wives, instead of asking if your husband has forgotten to buy the chili sauce again, or give him a reproachful look for being back late, I think there’s something to be learnt from dogs – they are so happy to see their ‘family members’ returning home. We can all learn how to judge less and love more. :)

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That’s it. It’s late and I shall have to head to bed now. Hope you enjoyed this chit-chat. There are definitely more than 4 things I’d do if I’m a guy, but that’s another blogpost for another time. :D

Mindfulness Singapore: A Special SGD50 Package To Help Stressed-Out Urbanites :)

If there’s one thing that is lacking in the lives of busy urbanites, it’s mindfulness. And a supporter of my 50 for SG campaign, Colin Koh, has the solution for you. Read on to find out more from Colin and Mindfulness Singapore:

Mindfulness Singapore

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I offer an integrated health and stress-management solution to help leaders overcome physical, emotional and mental challenges, as well as to achieve high-performance results in their business and life in general. Training programs are customized for each individual with whom I work based on their current state of health, motivation level and personal goals, specialising in three areas.

I offer three levels of one-on-one coaching, so you can choose the style that is right for you:

Life Coaching: for those who are seeking to make positive changes and are committed to train for it, including executives, athletes, business men and senior management leaders.

Mind-body Therapy: for sports or stress injury management and prevention; or for those who want to overcome obstacles or weaknesses they encounter in their mind, body or core energy.

Energy or ‘Chi’System: for students and instructors of Tai Chi Quan who want to upgrade their understanding and practice of the neigong system to harness and cultivate ‘Chi’.

I will teach you techniques on:

 Nourishing your body

 Releasing blockages in body meridian channels

 Personalized for each individual’s schedule

Highly recommended for:

Individuals who need privacy.

Work schedule requires travelling.

Find out more here: https://www.facebook.com/MindfulnessSingapore

~ Special SGD50 Promotion ~

Mindfulness Singapore

Special promotion just for my readers: Get the Easy5 Package for just S$50 (valid till Dec 2015). Simply send an email to shifucolinkoh@gmail.com and state that you are a reader of this blog and want to secure this promo price. :)

I wish you the best of health!~