Thursday, September 30, 2010

What's Up, Doc?

This week, I blogged about how to stay healthy financially. At the end of the day, it all boils down to saving for the rainy days. I was browsing in the net for a picture to post in my blog, when I came across the idea of coin box.

Coin box have always held sweet and sentimental memories for me. Just thinking about it brings up images of my mom taking us to Standard Chartered to open a savings account, and in us getting a coin box (I truly can’t recall what shape the coin box was in). In the case with Maybank, we got a coin box in the shape of a tiger. I love them all, and love them most when it got full and we took it to the bank to count them and have them deposited into our savings account.

After having blogged about it, I remembered just a few weeks ago, my younger brother handed me an old coin box of mine that he found in my room in our family house. My room has now become my nephew’s room, so out goes all my stuffs.. L

The coin box, in the shape of Goodday milk box, is about ¾ full and is extremely heavy.

I took it out again to have a look and started missing having a pretty coin box. Surprisingly just the other evening, as I was going through one of my shelves, I found this coin box which I bought from Pos Malaysia many years back. When I first saw it, it was love at first sight.

It's still in it's plastic wrapper, mind you. I am now on a mission to look for cute and unique looking coin box, coz I would love to start dropping spare coins into a box. More meaningful that way... :-D

Below are some of the coin boxes which I managed to find in the internet. Nice!

                                                                   Picture taken from here

                                                                           Picture taken from here

                                                      Picture taken from here

Next - Our food adventure for the day
We were in Kelana Jaya today, at our freight forwarding company. Knowing that we have a meeting at 2.30 pm in Semenyih, we went over to Sunway for lunch, because we both felt like eating lots of veggies. When we arrived and when I saw the variety of veggies, dishes and ulam they have there, I flipped. It was like, I wanted everything on my plate and I forgot about my diet..!!

In my excitement, I whipped out my camera and took 2 shots of the veggies, and was about to take picture of the ulam when I saw one of their staffs and asked him if I could take picture. He said no, so quietly I put the camera back. Since they told me no photography, I won’t mention the name of the restaurant here, but I feel that it’s just too good not to share.. :-D

The vegies itself (not including ulam) has about 20 type of varieties.

Picture taken from the other end of the veggies section.

ST’s lunch, with very minimum rice. I forgot to take mine, coz I started digging into it before I remembered.

Next - Magazine Talk
Was browsing through some magazines and came across some stuffs, which I would love to share with everyone here.

Most people ask me how come I am always spotted with short hair and why is it that I don’t keep it long instead. Well, I’ve had long hair before, I guess they don’t remember, but I've always been a short hair person. Furthermore, here is the reason why I just love short hair (ref below pix).

Short hair, the way it should be, simple and elegant. And I truly admire ladies who looks so natural, whether they have make-up on or not.

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" - Leonardo Da Vinci

                                               Model - Sinje Lee in SK II advert

Having said that, I'm not saying I will look that nice when in my short hair. In fact, not everyone is able to look so feminine in short hair.

This attire (pix below) is what they call the toga design, for the most obvious reason. Ok, if you don't know, it's because it follows the Roman toga fashion, you know, where they wear "robe like" attire that drapes down on one side of the shoulder? In all my life, I have never really liked the toga design, maybe because I feel that it’s rather one sided, there’s no balance. It look odd to me, but I saw this picture of Megan Fox in a toga dress, and I think it’s the most elegant dress I’ve ever seen. The way it’s designed and worn is perfect & sexy!

                                      Picture taken from Female Mag - July 2010 Edition

This is a shift dress (pix below), a dress design that I’ve always fancied. In fact, I think I have a whole wardrobe of them, and was just giving it away to my eldest niece the other day coz I can no longer fit into them. I think Emma Watson look nice and elegant in this piece. Love it!

                                               Female Mag, July 2010 Edition

And this one, hmmm…. I’m not sure what design is this, but I think she looks "stunning" in it. Maybe it’s because she is fair & pretty, but she certainly look lovely.

                                                                Female Mag, July 2010 Edition

Did you eat your "raw" veggies today?


You may have had your dose of veggies today, but have you had your dose of raw veggies?

Do you know that raw vegetables are extremely rich in minerals, vitamins, trace minerals and enzymes. The concept of enzyme is probably something new to you.

Enzymes are complex proteins that act as catalysts in almost every biochemical process that takes place in our body. There are 3 major categories of enzyme and the largest category play a role in all bodily processes including breathing, talking, moving, thinking, behavior and maintenance of the immune system.

Being a Chinese, our traditional cooking method always ensure we eat cooked food, including and especially veggies. Cooking veggies reduces the amount of minerals, vitamins and enzymes in vegetables. Of the cooking methods, steaming has been shown to retain the largest amount of vitamin content although it still reduces it. A diet composed exclusively of “cooked food” puts a severe strain on the pancreas, drawing down its reserves, so to speak, leaving it exhausted.

                                              Picture taken from here

You will get a lot more out of your vegetables if you consume them raw. The enzymes in raw food help start the process of digestion and reduce the body’s need to produce digestive enzymes. If your body has to rely too much on its own digestive enzymes the result is more stress is placed on your systems and organs leaving less time & energy for other jobs such as rebuilding and replacing damaged cells and tissue and keeping your immune system strong.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

How to spa-up your bathroom


The bathroom is such an important room in a home, in my opinion, even though it may be one of the smallest room. It is the one place most of us can get some privacy, a place where one can relax. 

Tips on how you can spa-up your bathroom
1) De-clutter your bathroom
2) Soften the lighting
3) Go green
4) Use unique tiles or wall colors 
5) Delight your sense of smell
6) Calming visuals and tunes
7) Add lots of rolled clean towels around (love their presence in my bathroom)

I was browsing in the net and found some pictures which are so inspiring. Of course, some of those are bathrooms with plenty of space, but there's no stopping us from turning our little bathrooms into a little haven.

See how lightings can really create that soft & lovely spa atmosphere.

                                                     Picture taken from here

                                               Picture taken from here

I love adding potted plants in the bathroom, it creates that nature feeling and it soothes the eye. It will also boost up the oxygen supply to the room and helps me to feel calm.

                                    Picture taken from here

                                              Picture taken from here

                                               Picture taken from here

Hate having plants in the bathroom? How about painting it green instead?

                                          Picture taken from here

Using unique tiles or paint color on the wall or the floor helps in a thousand ways than one. Having done that, you can basically keep the bathroom simple and minimal.

                                      Picture taken from here

                                        Picture taken from here

Fill the room with aromatherapy essential oils. Scented candles around the bathroom or bathtub works just as well. Soft scents such as lavender, ylang ylang or peppermint does wonders to the mind.

Of course, the ones below are bathrooms that we can only dream of, but.. no harm dreaming & feasting our eyes.. :-D

If your bathroom doesn't have a window with a view, like most of us, you can put up relaxing visual like countryside/seaside painting on the wall that you will be facing.

                                                    Picture taken from here

                                             Picture taken from here

I've always love blue..

                                            Picture taken from here

                                       I can't recall where I took this picture from

                                                      Picture taken from here

And if space is something that is of concern, you can always tile it up like the one below & install a shower glass to create that exclusive feel. Just love it!

                                               Picture taken from here

Keep the space simple and organized. Opt for a small cupboard under your

sink to keep products hidden from sight.

                                            Picture taken from here

And don't you just love this...!!!

Hey, check this out!
1) The joy of being a minimalist
2) Koh Samui, Thailand
3) Five facts about me
4) My heartfelt thanks
5) What I feel like doing right now


Blog name - carrot head and applemint

Sunday, September 26, 2010

5 tips on how to stay healthy financially

1) Begin a “rainy day” savings account early
The minute you start working, get a good insurance personnel to work out your insurance policy for you, that covers critical illnesses, H&S (hospital & surgical), PA (personal accident) & long term cash saving. This will force start you on saving monthly & you pay the least amount for starting early.

At such young age, it’s difficult to manually save, as there are plenty of temptations out there that will dry up your account by mid month. Review and increase the saving amount as your salary increases, and you will have your retirement covered. It’s never too early or too late to start, if you haven’t already started one yet.

2) Pay all bills & your financial commitment at the beginning of the month as soon as you get your salary
Never owe credit card companies money. You saw something that you must have while shopping, what should you do? Do a quick math in your mind. If you know that you do not have the money to settle this item immediately when the bill comes, don’t buy, unless if it’s on interest free installment.

3) Don’t buy if it’s not on sale
If the item that your heart so desire is not on sale, at least 30% lesser from its original price, drop it. It’s not worth buying. With sale/discount, at least you are buying something and saved some monies. With the current whole year ongoing sale, 10% discount is nothing. It’s probably just a gimmick.

4) Be in control of your finances
Keep track of your daily spending. This way, you will see clearly where all your money/spending goes to, which item is unnecessary and which can be cut off/reduce.

5) Learn about investing
Make it a point to read up a bit. The best thing would be to invest your extra monies in a diversified plan, with some in the fast cash investment and some in the long term investment.

Alternatively, each time you get extra cash, allocate a 10-20% of it into your savings. Do this automatically each time and you would have started a healthy saving habit.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Snapshot of the day

Picture taken by a friend - Christopher Harriot


Blog name - carrot head and appleming

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Stay young by watching Kiki's Delivery Service

Kiki's Delivery Service is a 1989 Japanese animated fantasy film produced, written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. The film won the Animage Anime Grand Prix Prize in 1989. 

It features a 13 year old witch-in training. It's traditional for witches to live for a year alone when they reach 13.

The story touches on the gulf that exists between independence and reliance in Japanese teenage girls. Going far beyond coming of age themes, it deals with the nature of creativity and talent, and the central difficulty every person faces in becoming themselves, whether through luck, hard work or confidence.

Aaawh... how I wish I can fly like her..

I enjoy watching this cartoon as it gives little girls lots of positive inspiration in times of personal difficulty, and I truly enjoy watching the beautiful scenic view (the unusual tall medieval city walls, the city which is raised on a hill, the clock tower, etc).

Hey, check this out!
1) Five facts about me
2) How to stop addiction to Bejeweled Blitz in FB
3) Coffee talk


Blog name - carrot head and applemint

Monday, September 20, 2010

Wake up to beautiful & subtle acoustic chime

Was browsing through the Yoga Journal magazine a few weeks back and saw an advert on this Zen Timepiece.

They seemed to have created the world’s ultimate alarm clock, with a “mindfulness bell.” Their Zen Timepieces acoustic 6-inch brass bowl-gong fills your room with beautifully complex tones whenever it strikes.

In the morning, its exquisite sounds summon your consciousness into awakening with a series of subtle gongs that provide an elegant beginning to your day.

You can watch the product demonstration video in their website, in the link provided above.

I love the soft acoustic sound that it makes, gently & elegantly nudging us into consciousness.

What else will they come up with next, I wonder..

Blog name – carrot head and applemint  

Friday, September 17, 2010

Moon Festival @ The Mid-Autumn Festival

Amongst the Malaysians, I believe it is more widely known as the moon cake festival or lantern festival, as it is largely associated with moon cake eating and colorful lantern being seen to be carried by little kids around the neighborhood at night; both of which are my favourite activity.

This year, moon cake festival falls on Sept 22, 2010 (next Wed).

I truly love and enjoy watching the colorful soft hues of the lantern being carried or hung around a shady tree at night. It’s most beautiful when it’s stringed together in a row, or carried around by a group of people.

The mooncake feasting and tea session is my favourite part, though my personal preference is not the traditional moon cake as seen in the 2nd picture above, but more of the “ping phay” type (non bake type – ref pix below, the one in green color), with lotus seed. I don't know how to eat the red bean one.. :-D

The mid autumn festival or in Chinese – Zhongqiujie, is a popular harvest festival celebrated by Chinese and Vietnamese, dating back over 3,000 years of moon worship in China’s Shang Dynasty.

It is held on the 15th day of the eight month in the Chinese calendar, which is usually around late Sept or early Oct in the Gregorian calendar. It is a date that parallels the autumnal equinox of the solar calendar, when the moon is supposedly at its fullest and roundest. The traditional food of this festival is the mooncake, of which there are many different types.

Traditionally on this day, Chinese family members and friends will gather to admire the “bright and full moon”, while they enjoy eating moon cake and drink Chinese tea. Meanwhile the kids will be busy decorating their garden or home with paper lanterns.

Blog name – carrot head and applemint

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Koh Samui, Thailand (Part II)

Cafes & Bistros Galore
One of my favourite activities at Koh Samui, was checking out and parking myself into one of the cafes/bistros either in Chaweng Beach or Lamai Beach with my story book, if I can't be in the resort enjoying the facilities.

This is one of my favourite coffee hang out at Lamai Beach, just outside our resort. It's called Perk & Peck.

The reason why I posted 2 of the same pix above is because I love looking into details. When you click on the pix for a clearer & enlarged view, you'll be able to see different things from different angle inside the cafe. That is what I love, and I like doing that once a while, coz it reminds me of how the inside look like. I didn't take pix inside because I wasn't really able to capture what I wanted to show in the camera.

Inside looking out..

See, they have tons of books which we can just pick out and read there (pix below). It's next to the board.

The other reason why I love this place is also because of this....

They have about 9 cats & kittens running around the whole place, sleeping everywhere tho you don't see them all at one time. They are stray cats that gets treated like "royalty". But don't worry, the place is squeaky CLEAN. 2 of the kittens are three legged, due to illness at young age. The owner is such a nice person.......! He paid for the amputations. Oh, the owner is an extremely shy guy.. :-D

See what I mean...  and did I mention they are stray cats.....?!?!

Flip flop craze
There was nothing much to see at Lamai Beach, but in Chaweng, I found this flip flop brand that I never knew of – Sanuk. The flip flops are made of yoga mat, can you believe it, and when you walk on it, OMG….!!! Feels like you are floating on air, so comfortable…………..!!!! It’s so good for the feet! And it’s not that expensive… about RM 80.

I didn't managed to snap a pix of the one I saw, but I googled it back home and found some very nice ones. Click on pix for a clearer view. NICE.....!!!

I saw a simple light blue color "Rip Curl" flip flop which I really like – RM 178. Would have bought it if I don’t already own one, which I was already wearing there. The one that I was wearing was purchased at Bali many years back at around RM 129, I think.

Yeah, I know, ST thought I was crazy to spend so much on a slipper. But it’s really good quality flip flop (note that I refuse to call it slipper). Flip flop or sandals sound better for this sort of high quality items. Here’s the one I currently own, from Gravis. Love it, don’t think you can find it anymore.

Since I don’t believe in buying something just becoz I like it and have them rot in the house, I decided not to get it. One person can’t be using so many, you can only wear 1 pair at any one time, and it’s not like we stay at the beach all year round.

Favourite hang out in the resort

If ST doesn’t ask to go out and walk the street (which is his favourite activity), I can be found either at the beach with my book or in the library/internet room with my book. See how big is the screen of the pc, so syiok....!!! And look at the "canggih" mouse...!

Even the screen saver is a picture of something green with running water, wt heck! So serene. And I love the smell of the room, it has something that smells natural and refreshing!

There is a whole shelf of story books which we can pick and choose from too.

If ST wish to stay in the room, he’ll be in the room watching his CNN with the air-cond turned on, while I’ll be at the balcony, lazying on the day bed with my book.. :-D  This is the daybed.

Speaking of books again, there are a few little shops outside the resort that sells and rent story books. Heaven...!!!

Making friends with the locals
Ladies and gentlemen, meet Chillin…

On those occasions where we pry the street (we walk out very often for lunch, dinner and when ST feels like he need his retail therapy), we made friends with the locals. Chillin belongs to a shoe shop owner (shop called Chilli Chocolate). Extremely small, FAT, cute and friendly. Love this playful lil fella..

Unfortunately when ST tried to take a pix with him, he looked the other way, just refused to pose. He's probably thinking, "Eh hello, you're male and I'm male, and I'm not gay, so buzz off."

The next day, when we went back, see how active he was again...  Oh, and that's his teddy bear... +___+

Actually his name is Chilli, he has another sister called Choco. Both were named after the shoe shop. Choco is not that friendly, hence, she stays home. But the lady kept pronouncing his name as "Chillin" or rather, it sounds like that when the Thais pronounce it, so "Chillin" it is...

We also met some "old friends" along the way to the temple nearby our resort. 

Meet my scary looking guardian... :-D

No, they don't move. If they do, you won't find me standing next to the thing. You'll see me running off and screaming at the top of my lungs.....

Renewing my relationship with photography
This is what I did in between my other favourite activities. Taking pix… of my flip flop.... :-D

Crazy, yeah, I know… told ya I'm flip flop crazee...

This pair of flip flop, I bought in Bangkok.

Bought a ring
I bought a ring from Joe, an American who now resides in Koh Samui, owns the light and costume jewelery shop, as well as the Subway by the main road of Lamai Beach. Nice and friendly guy. This is the shop, on the left. See all the round lanterns? That's the one.

And this is the ring. It’s a silver ring with a moonstone. I love this ring..!! Really I do! And for those of you who knows me, I'm sure you know why I chose "moonstone".

I was not able to take the above pix with my normal digicam, coz it's too small. Had to use ST's Olympus SP-500 UZ, I love that camera, I tell you. It has 10x optical zoom.

Glorious food!
Due to all the walking, we were hungry most of the time, so we didn't actually take a lot of pix of our food, coz we chomped it down before we realized we were supposed to take pix. But here are some which I managed to..

Our first day at Koh Samui, after checking in, we were famished, so we just walked out of our resort, to a nearby little cafe for our first "tom yam goong." The rest, no need to see, pix didn't turn out that nice.

At Chaweng Beach, I ordered this lovely rice with many different types of my favourite mushrooms, yuumm....!!! Restaurant is called Will Wait, yeah, odd name. See the shape of the rice.. :-D

Pasta in our resort's Italian Restaurant. No, we didn't have 6 eggs, it's raviolli something something...  Too hungry to remember what it is called. Yuuummy...!

Three types of pastas..

My breakfast, followed by fruits. They have 4-5 different types of bread which is so "sedap"! I couldn't help but pile it on.

Oh, sorry, one more vegie before the fruit, he..he..

Shark on sale
All along the beach, there will be plenty of resorts/hotels/motels and seafood restaurants. In most of the restaurants, whether they at the beach or in the commercial area, sharks (especially baby sharks) are sold for dinner. Sad, but true..

Reading light
I remember, twice when we were at Gem Isle, I had problem reading a book at night, because the lightings at the resort at night is rather dim, whether it’s at the hang out area or in the room. It’s worse of course, when ST says he need to sleep on certain night coz he was bored to death in the room, with nothing much to watch on TV. The “emperor” can’t sleep with any lights on (even though they only hv dim lights in the room). So this time round, I went to an island fully prepared.

Bought this reading light from Ace Hardware @ RM 47. It’s extremely useful…!!  You can just clip it onto your collar and point the little reading light at the page (the neck is extremely flexible for pointing at whatever direction). It’s bright enough for reading (well, very much better than those room lights) and won’t even disturb a sleeping person next to me.. :-D

Uses just 1 normal AAA battery, which comes with the light, and it has a magnetic base. Perfect!

I found out when I was there, that they have a gym. Unfortunately I didn't bring my sports shoe, but they also provide yoga mats in the gym. That was a saver! Hence I managed to squeeze in a full yoga work out on my 2nd day, coz it was pouring in the evening when we wanted to hit the pool. I also managed to do a bit of cycling in the gym on other days. 

Island Airport Again
Oh, this you gotta see. I thought I've seen it all when we first arrived but this is something new.
After we have checked ourselves in and our luggage, we had to walk quite a distance to get to the departure hall/gate. This is the walkway to the departure gate..

Boutiques and cute little shops line up on both left and right of the walkway..

Feeling the heat? Drop in to Swenson for some cooling ice cream.

ST and his window shopping again..

This is the departure gate/hall where we wait..

And in this departure hall, they provide free pastries, coffee and tea and free internet too. Really "tak boleh tahan" leh, so nice one...!

And their toilet, what the heck, so nice one also...

Ok la, that's it..! 

I was reading Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert throughout the trip. Will put up a separate post on that, on my own opinion of the book and it's content.

For your info, most of the above pix was taken with my Nokia E72, becoz my digicam gave up on me. Not bad, eh?

I have more pix posted in my FB album. These pix were posted here in my blog for the benefits of "some people" who doesn't have FB account and refuses to get one. Nice of me, eh? You know who you are, faster say thank you now..


Blog name - carrot head and applemint

Hey, check this out! - Coffee Talk
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