CNY 2015 – Year of Sheep

Woah! My last blog entry was actually in April… Since the June school holidays have just begun,  I finally found the energy and time to do some updates here. Obviously I’m going to have quite a bit of backlog posts coming up.

As I was going through my account, I realised I still had my Chinese New Year 2015 draft pending. Like seriously, Chinese New Year had already past for 4 months you know! But I feel that this significant occasion certainly deserved to be remembered. To me, it is not exactly about the goodies, yusheng, steamboats, liondance, the new clothes and redpackets but more of a yearly affair where everyone makes the effort and time for each other. You get to see those people who you hardly see in a year time. So how can I not love celebrating such a happy occasion in Singapore. Hence CNY 2015 would be my first post for the start. 🙂

***February 2015****

This CNY had been quite a crazy tiring one, given that the first day of CNY was on a Thursday, we had the luxury of having four continuous days of visiting all over the island. Although I love having the four continuous days to visit our friends and relatives, it was really tiring.



In fact, Wednesday seemed like the start of CNY already. As usual, reunion dinner was at my in laws’ place. Now that we have kids, having the reunion dinner at home would be more ideal for us. She had pre-ordered a set deal from Soup Restaurant and we thought food was mediocre only. Anyways it’s our custom for married woman to be having reunion dinner with the husband’s family. Though I miss having my mom’s steamboat, she can prepare anytime if we want. So it’s seriously not of an issue.






As usual, CNY Day 1 was spent at both the parents’ house where all the relatives gathered around. The first half of the day was at the in laws’ place before we popped over to my parents’ for dinner. The good thing is that they are both living few blocks apart which really made travelling so convenient. So the entire day was all about poker cards, foods, foods and more foods… Oh ya my mom cooked a feast! Her cooked from scratch, Deluxe Treasure Pot (aka Buddha jumps over the wall) was marvellous! We were totally amazed at her superb cooking skills. It was a pity that we didn’t take a picture of our delectable dinner. My father was telling us how early my mom woke up just to prepare the dinner all by herself. Yep we definitely appreciated her efforts and hard work but I guessed we appreciated her yummy food more. heehee 😉 With that, CNY day 1 ended nearly 12 midnight!














The next three days and the following weekend, we went around Singapore, from the west to the east, visiting our relatives and friends. It’s always such a joy seeing them during CNY. We even attended baby Tyler’s mini first birthday party. I’m sure double Ds were both elated throughout the festive period. I could see that they were totally immersed in the festive mood. Now, I’m already looking forward to the next CNY with new little ones coming. 🙂


December family fun time

The whole of December had been an incredibly fun and fulfilling one, mostly the second half because Papa Yap took leave from the third week of December until 4th January. The kids, especially Darian who was having his school holidays, and I were absolutely elated to have him around the house. For that past two weeks, we went out most of the days so I hardly cook. Besides, with him in the house meant having extra hands to help me with the kids. Hence, it was like a well deserved break for myself as well. 🙂

There were simply too many activities that happened in December. As such, I decided to sum up everything with this post. Anyways I was pretty sure that double Ds totally had a smashing great time throughout December!

Polliwogs at East Coast

Going to Polliwogs is always a happy time for double Ds. They seemed to have infinite fun playing there and will always ask for more. Coincidentally our dinner dates, Steven and Cassie, were around the vicinity and decided to join us for a while before going for their movie date. Later in the evening, we met up again for dinner at Junction 8. The kids enjoyed their company and we could tell that they adore double Ds as well.




Lunch at Changi City Point and playtime at the Petite Park.

It has been such a long time since I met up with my gf, Angela. So I thought meeting her, together with double Ds, at Changi City Point would be ideal for a little catch up. At least I’m confident enough to supervise the kids in that little indoor playground while chatting with Angela. Apparently Double Ds enjoyed playing with her too. She certainly was good at entertaining the kids. 🙂




Bowling at CSC Changi

We had a bowling and dinner date with Steven and Cassie. Darian was exceptionally happy to hear about our date as he has always been very keen in bowling. The bowling center at CSC Changi is newly established  and has sofa seats rather than the conventional bowling seats. The comfortable settings created a cozy environment for both bowlers and non-bowlers. It’s a great place for friends and family to get together. The other good thing is that the lanes are equipped with gutter bumpers to help kids keep their balls rolling towards the pins. This definitely kept the kids’ morale high. Now that Darian is older and could lift the lightest bowling ball, bowling seems like another family activity for us. Overall, we had a fun bowling experience with Darian and the couple. Looking forward to our next bowling session with them again. 🙂






Yes, the kids love playdates and the best time to plan for playdates is of course during school holidays. This December,we met up with SukChing and baby Tyler for a couple of times. Double Ds are always talking about baby Tyler and they certainly love visiting him at home. We also had another playdate with my friend Fiona and her two lovely kids, Jovan and Joey. It didn’t take the boys long to warm up. The girls however, were at the stage where they were unable to engage in cooperative play. Still, the playdate was an awesome one. I totally enjoyed talking to mummy Fiona and double Ds were happy to have double Js in the house too. 🙂



New Life Community Church

We brought the kids to support the grandparents and their friends for a line dance performance at the church. Darian was all focused watching the performances while Dyann fell asleep before the grandparents went up the stage. Haha…




Yap’s Family day out at the Universal Studio Singapore

Since Papa Yap’s elder brother and his family came back from London for a month stay, we decided to have a family outing to the Universal Studio. It was a good idea for everyone, especially the kids, to get together before they fly back to London. Weather was hot but still bearable. As usual, we spent lots of time queuing for rides and taking photo. While the in laws decided to leave the park at 4ish, we remained in the park until 8pm. We thought it was too early to leave and the kids obviously didn’t have enough fun. Surprisingly queues at night was very short and double Ds were so excited for the rides. Double Ds had an enjoyable day and Dyann was even happier to receive a USS balloon from one of the staff. But someone else wasn’t too pleased about it… 🙂









Christmas 2015

Christmas eve was spent at home together with Jeff and family, Richard and Yanni. Double Ds always love seeing this group of people. They love playing with Double Js all the time. It was absolutely a great occasion to hang out together. On Christmas day, we went over to SukChing’s house and stayed there till late night. Needless to say, we all had a enjoyable time there. This year, we bought a Christmas tree and had all the presents placed under the tree until Christmas Day. Somehow they did manage to wait until Christmas Day to unwrap all the presents despite all those anticipation. Double Ds were very delighted and grateful for all the Christmas presents.







SukLin and Kim’s Rom

Although we didn’t make it to SukLin and Kim’s grand wedding in Thailand, we were still glad to witness their ROM in Singapore. Their ROM was hosted in Tunglok Central and only the close relatives were invited. It’s another wonderful reason to gather with the relative. Wishing them an everlasting marriage and hope to receive ‘good news’ from them soon. 🙂




Cycling at East Coast park

It was an impromptu family activity at the East Coast Park. Weather was cloudy and windy, absolutely perfect for a evening leisure cycle. We rented a family bicycle and a small four wheeled bicycle for an hour. Darian wanted to cycle on his own and we thought it was also a good time for him to practise cycling. It’s always great to be doing such activities during the weekdays where there isn’t any crowd at all. We all had a splendid evening cycle at the beach that day.




Gardens by the bay

We managed to visit Christmas at Gardens by the bay before the theme changed for the next season. Dinner was at Satay by the bay before we began our night stroll at the Flower Dome and Supertree Grove. Luckily for us, it was a cooling night for a stroll around the park. Doubles Ds enjoyed the walk in the Flower Dome and the super tree Rhapsody. The Christmas decorations were all so beautiful to look at. We took many pretty photos and only left the park at about 10pm. Yet another happy family outing. I totally love family time like this. 🙂





Mid-autumn festival 2014


Our family had our first overseas Mid-autumn experience in the States last year and couldn’t be any more glad to be back home for this festival this year.


We didn’t celebrate the Mid-autumn festival on the actual day as Papa Yap had to work late. So here’s what we did during the Mid-autumn festive weekend this year. On Friday, after our dinner at Tampines mall, Papa Yap decided to bring the kids to Chinatown for a walk. The streets were brightened up with so many lanterns of various colours. Such a beautiful sight. The kids were also happy to be going home with a lantern each from their Papa.









The next day, my sister and John came over to my place to accompany double Ds while Papa Yap attended a dinner date with his friends. After dinner, we brought the kiddos under the block and they had a fun time playing at the playground as well as playing with the lanterns. And guess what, we ended up using the lantern from previous years. Dyann actually spoilt both her new lanterns and one of Darian’s shortly after purchase. Haha…







On Sunday night, we brought the kiddos to Punggol end for a lantern walk. We walked around with the lanterns, played with candles, had ice-cream, and watched the kids run and glide around. It was absolutely an enjoyable and happy night with the kiddos. Papa Yap and I would definitely keep this traditional festival going for our little family. We want them to have wonderful childhood memories just like us. 🙂










CNY 2014

This Chinese New Year is rather an unique one for us. It’s our first time we spent CNY out of Singapore. It’s my first time having to prepare reunion dinner for my little family, making my own yusheng, albeit missing the CNY atmosphere. Back at home, yusheng is sold everywhere, my mother and MIL prepare all the ingredients and dishes for the reunion dinners, and all we do was just eat! Haha 🙂

Frankly, I was feeling quite emotional on the eve and the first two days of CNY especially when I browsed through lots of CNY photos in Facebook. I have always look forward to such occasion where family, relatives and friends gather around. It is certainly nice to see all the familiar faces during such festive season. Couldn’t help but to have such mixed feelings…

We only experienced a bit of the CNY mood the following week when we visited SLTC Tan and family, attended the embassy CNY reception and went to DA’s
house. Although we couldn’t find any mandarin oranges in stores, we managed to select the biggest tangerines among all to make do for our house visits. Heehee 😉 Still we did have had some celebrations with fellow Singaporeans after all.

So here I wish everyone a Happy and Prosperous Horse year with abundance of good health and wealth! Let’s us all Huat in this ‘Horseh’ year!! 🙂


Simple reunion dinner for the yappies. Fishball cabbage soup, breaded prawns and omelette, minced meat tofu and pan-fry fish. Obviously I overcooked again. Well it can also means abundance right? Heehee 😉


Darian and Dyann wishes everyone Gong Xi Fa Cai! 😉


My first homemade fruity veggy yusheng. It was a great success and Papa Yap finished the plate clean! Really yummy and I even prepared one for Papa Yap’s classmates the next morning. Am glad that they enjoyed it too! 🙂


Darian having fun tossing the yusheng! Huat ah!


Aww… My two lovely angels in their Chinese costume. 🙂


Papa Yap and Double Ds


Us at the Embassy  CNY dinner reception. 🙂



Day 6 – Disney Magic Kingdom

***25th December 13***



Just one word to sum up Christmas at Magic kingdom…Overwhelming! Overwhelming place, crowd and queues! I got a shock when we got into the car park at 8ish. It was already packed. From the parking lot tram to the monorail station to the entrance of Magic Kingdom took us about one and a half hour. Crazy! According to the staff, Christmas is the busiest day of the year. And our friends were telling us how big the park was and apparently it was quite impossible to complete the park within a day. It’s true! Now that it’s Christmas, we couldn’t even finish half a park. That’s just how ridiculous it was. Given that it was our first time there, it seemed rather ‘wasted’ you know.  I did wonder if we have chosen the right time to visit but it was Papa Yap’s idea for us to celebrate and soak into the Christmas atmosphere. Somehow we did despite the crowd. But I am very sure there is no way for me to visit such popular theme park during any festive seasons again. 😉


Magic Kingdom surely lives up to its name. It is certainly one beautiful theme park! And I’m so in love with the castle. Anyway do you guys know that not all the castles worldwide are the same. The one in Orlando and Japan belongs to Cinderella while California, HongKong and France, has the Sleeping Beauty castle.








How can you not take photographs with Mickey, Minnie and the Disney characters when you visit Disneyland. It’s like a must-do regardless of the wait right? Anyway we could tell that Dyann likes Minnie quite a bit as she was looking and touching Minie throughout the photo taking session. So adorable! And whenever we entered a gift shop, she would be looking for Minnie stuff. Hmm… seems like we will be expecting more Minnie stuff at home! heehee 😉




We did take The Winnie the pooh ride and watch a 3D Mickey show too. It didn’t take us that long to wait for the two as we managed to grab the fast-pass tickets. So peeps if you are planning for a trip to Disneyland, do your homework and check out their fast pass stations. This can really save a lot of waiting time.









We totally enjoyed the Disney parades and managed to catch two parades in exchange for all the other rides. Yeah we really spent A LOT of time waiting. Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime parade which is filled with Disney Characters, elves, reindeer, toys, candy, and also Santa atop a sleigh. The music is catchy and the floats are spectacular making it a parade not to be missed. Of course we were glad to have made it. The other one was the Disney electrical parade that is a night-time parade where Disney characters come alive in bright lit colourful floats, marching through the streets. Beautiful!





The fireworks performance was absolutely stunning! We felt that it was better than the one in Japan. Having to wait for the show since 7pm when it only begin at 9.45pm. What more can I say? By then Baby Dyann was already sleeping on the double stroller while Darian was still battling with the ‘sleeping the monster’ in him. Haha.. Well he did manage to stay awake and watch the fantastic fireworks and laser show. The moment the show ended, he sat in the stroller and dozed off. That’s just how tired he was. 😉



It was certainly one long and tiring day at Magic Kingdom. You know what… we were there until 12am yet we didn’t get a chance to finish touring the entire theme park. Seriously we got to find a way to come back again! Haha 😉 Nevertheless it was definitely a magical Christmas for us. What a splendid and wonderful Christmas! 🙂


Christmas just around the corner

We have our very first Christmas tree set up in States because Papa Yap wanted the kids to feel the Christmas atmosphere. Thank you Papa! 🙂 We specially love the Christmas atmosphere here. We get to see people getting real pine trees for Christmas, houses beautifully decorated with all the Christmas tree, lights and light up figures. It feels so different! The mood is definitely much livelier here. 🙂

Darian and baby Dyann were really excited and happy to see the tree and lights in our house. They were pretty much involved in the hanging of ornaments too. One enjoyed hanging the ornaments while the other one has fun pulling down the ornaments! Is not that hard to guess who right? And that explains why our tree is like only half decorated! We could only start at the fourth branch onwards. haha 😉

Thanks to nainai, maipors and gugus for the all the presents! If not there would only be 5. heehee 😉 Darian was extremely happy waking up to see so many presents under the tree. He believed that Santa came in the middle of the night and wondered how did Santa enter our house. Well well looks like he watched too much of Christmas cartoons! He checked the fireplace and thought it was impossible as there isn’t any hole for Santa to drop down from the chimney. The doors were locked so there’s no way Santa could come in through the door. So I told him that it was actually me who opened the door for Santa while he parked his sleigh on the balcony. He was so so upset that I didn’t wake him up to see Santa! You should have seen his face! Hilarious boy! 🙂 There’s no doubt that he wish he could tear open all the presents now but we managed to convince him that, if he ever open the presents before Christmas, they will disappear. Yes it did work for him! And now he is very worried that Baby Dyann would tear up his presents as she just tore up one! Haha 😉




We are all ready but we will be out of town for Christmas. Still, it’s going to be a jolly Christmas for us. Another 9 days more to Christmas! 🙂



MCU tree decoration and potluck

***2nd December 13***

Our family attended a tree decoration and potluck party organized by the school for the international students. Families were expected to bring along a dish for the potluck session and a hanging ornament as well. Thanks to my very very nice husband who replied(without consulting me) that we would be bringing sambal(chilli) prawns. Oh why don’t you suggest something easier like green bean soup? Haha… That jolly meant that I have to shell and devein 2 pounds of prawns. Still, I was glad that the sambal paste that we bought was really tasty and spicy. We received good feedback on the dish and our Filipino friend, Richard, was telling us how spicy and hot it was. I suppose it was way too hot for him!


Sambal prawns. Yummy!

It was a nice evening to gather around with the other international students and their family. We tried quite a bit of international food and they tasted good too. It was certainly great that the organizing committee indented a bouncing castle for the kids too. I’m pretty sure the kids had a lot of fun, so did Darian. 🙂


International food.




Bouncing castle


The girl who cannot play in the bouncing castle.

As the tree decorations began, the kids took turns to hang their ornament on the tree. It was only then we realized that we have to bring along a hanging ornament. Thanks to Feroz who brought some hanging ornaments and gave it to Darian for him to participate in the activity. This boy insisted to hang his ornament facing the front because he wanted them to be seen!


Darian hanging the ornament.


All done! 🙂


Hi mister snowman! 🙂

At the end of the event, there was a lucky draw with some cookbooks and a light up musical snowman to be given away. We didn’t win any prize yet double Ds went home with the snowman! Guess what? A little girl(maybe 8 or 9 years old) who won the snowman gave it to Darian. Nope, Darian didn’t ask or cry for the snowman. It was just so unexpected when the little girl approached us and gave it to Darian. Wow that was absolutely sweet and kind of her being so generous! Of course Darian and Baby Dyann were really happy. So maybe we did win the lucky draw after all! Tis the season to be jolly… Lalalalala lalalala… 😉


Mid-Autumn festival

***13th September 13***

Just as we thought that we would miss out this year mid-autumn festival, LTC Tan invited us to his house on base for a mini celebration together with some other international families. He had prepared mooncakes and lanterns as well as drinks and snacks for all of us. We arrived at about 7pm and started preparing for the walk to the Potomac river to release our sky lanterns. It was a long and cold walk down. I can feel the chill even in my cardigan. The duo were dressed in long sleeves as weather has started turning cold lately and I wouldn’t want them to catch a chill.

At about 7.40pm, we carried our lit paper lanterns and began our walk to the river. All our candles went out half way before we could reach. I think we probably took about 30 minutes walking there. We were supposed to fly our sky lanterns at the river. Most of the people were at the platform nearing the river while I was at the start of the bridge with the duo. I have this phobia standing near to the sea especially without any fencing, and naturally my legs would turn ‘jelly’ hence I didn’t want to take any chance with the duo around. Thank goodness I made the right choice as Papa Yap told me about the shaky platform thereafter. All the kids were so excited about the lanterns. The first few sky lanterns didn’t manage to fly up and landed into the water shortly. It was pretty disappointing because the sky lanterns were all scribbled with respective families wishes. Until the last one flew right up to the sky and we were all so nervous hoping that it would not land into the sea. Finally it made its way right up into the wide dark sky. I was wondering who that lucky family was. Then Papa Yap walked back and asked me if I have seen our sky lantern flying up into the sky. Woohoo! So it was ours! I was absolutely delighted and so was Papa Yap. Huat ah! 🙂


LTC Tan briefing on setting up the lanterns


Waiting for Papa


Papa Yap showing Darian how to lit up the paper lantern


Our sky lantern penned with our wishes and Darian’s little drawings. 🙂


It has been really many years since I last carried a paper lantern. heehee 😉


Darian talking to Uncle Feroz. We were all getting ready to set off.


On the platform flying the sky lanterns


The orange object at the top left. That’s our lantern up in the sky! Yay 🙂


LTC Tan helping the kids with the paper lanterns.


Papa Yap indulging in mooncake


This is the first time Darian carry a paper lantern. He was pretty much frightened that he would get burn. Haha 😉 Anyway it was a very good experience for him. For the past two years, he received like 5 to 6 musical battery operated lanterns from his grandparents and grandaunts. I can tell you how irritating those are and Papa Yap hates them. Haha… 😉


Papa Yap with his little princess.

Happy mid-autumn festival everyone! 🙂



Last day of Lunar New Year

***24th February 13***


CNY is celebrated for 15 days. During these 15 days, people will go around visiting their relatives and friends bringing along two mandarin oranges which symbolised good fortune. This year, it has been raining almost everyday. Hopefully the rain will wash away all the unhappiness and sorrows of life. Yeah! The last day of CNY is known as the Yuan Xiao Jie 元宵节. Usually on this day, sweet glutinous rice balls, tang yuan 汤圆, are eaten on this day, marking the end of CNY festivities. These round and sticky balls also symbolise family closeness and togetherness!


And so after dinner,  I started cooking the tang yuan 汤圆 at 8ish.  I bought the ready-made tang yuan from the supermarket as we were out the whole day and had only reached home about 7pm. It is really easy to prepare. I got it all done in about 20 minute time. All you need to do is to boil two pots of water, one for the tang yuan and the other for the sweet soup(using brown sugar and pandan leaves). Then serve the tang yuan in the sweet soup when they are cooked. That’s it!

May this year of Snake bring us the best of health, happiness and prosperity. Gong Xi Fa Cai! Huat ah! 🙂

CNY at Punggol Lodge

***16th February 13***




We had invited Papa Yap’s OCS friends and their family to our place for a CNY gathering session. We are really glad that most of the peeps turn up, making the gathering a successful one. So thanks to Jeff’s, Richard’s, Adrel’s, Luke’s, Joel’s, TT’s, Shaiful’s family and Lek for coming by. There were totally so many kiddos in the house, just like a mini childcare. Perhaps there will be more juniors joining us in near future. heehee 😉 For dinner we had ordered mee siam, chicken wings, nuggets, fishballs and curry puffs. On top of these, Lesley had prepared potato cutlet and jelly as well! And for the kids, I had cooked macaroni soup for them as I don’t think they will want to eat mee siam.


Yu sheng from Nihon Mura


Getting ready to toss for another wonderful year of happiness, good health and prosperity! Huat huat huat! 🙂


The boys washing their hands right after the Lo hei session. Haha 😉

As it was the seventh day of lunar new year , the ren ri 人日, we ordered yu sheng for another round of lo hei session. The seventh day, traditionally known as the common man’s birthday, is the day when everyone grows one year older.  It is also the day when tossed yu sheng, is eaten for continued wealth and prosperity. So how can we not have a lo hei session then? Heehee 😉


The BFFs


Meimei with Auntie Yanni


Adorable baby Tristan


Our group photo. ( missing out TT’s family and Lek who left earlier)

It was definitely one awesome evening, catching up with them all. And I am sure the kids had a great time too. Marvellous! We were saying that we will make it like a yearly affair until one day when the kids decide not to tag along with us. Heehee… Looking forward to our next round of gathering, most probably at Adrel and Christina’s new apartment! So till then 😉