Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Durians for Birthdays?

I actually quite like durians, and would often stop to look see whenever I see them stacked up high at the fruit stores during the season. But I would never buy them by the kilo, as I am always scared of getting "chopped carrot head". I would however be tempted once in a while, to get their pre-packed ones whenever they decide to slash prices during the closing hours. That is definitely a hit and miss for me because I am no connoisseur, but with pricing at 3 for $10 type, no complains lah.

Seems like there is only one person left in my family who likes durians and would happily eat them with me. The rest seems to not mind, but would also not like lor. And the person is none other than my firstborn, Steffi, whom also just celebrated her 14th birthday last weekend! Time really flies. She was just an infant in my arms but has blossomed into a teenager now. A birthday cake is of course a must and we had an indulgence this time round thanks to The Durian Bakery

Her delicious choc cake filled with durian pulp and the awesome Dark Choco MSW Mousse!

So we had the very 'gelat' Dark Chocolate Fudge Drip Cake with Mao Shan Wang Core which was totally relished by the birthday girl and myself lah. Chocolate and durian do complement each other lor. But that's not all we had, as they not only have cakes, but also sells a variety of durian patisseries as well! And if you cannot make up your mind, you can get their Signature Durian Dessert Box and try them all!

Just look at all the durian goodness!

Ok I am not exaggerating. The huge-ass puffs are the biggest I have even tried and chockful of delicious pulp!

Definitely a great experience for durian lovers, without the need to unhusk or the messiness, and it definitely tastes like 100% durian flesh in my cakes and bakes. Thank you The Durian Bakery, for sending all these goodies over on Steffi's birthday!

Friday, December 31, 2021

Pineapple Tarts Singapore

Wow Chinese New Year is just around the corner and I am starting to have the craving to snack on all the wonderful titbits already! There are lots of different types of CNY goodies in the market already, with new ones being added yearly as well. Just Pineapple tarts alone, I am sure the variety and flavors boggles you right?

Wow... look at the assortment of flavors! 

We had the great pleasure of trying out the assortment of Pineapple tarts from Pineapple Tarts Singapore, and their CNY goodies are supposedly 100% homemade, handmade and award-winning hor, mai siao siao! Oh despite the name, they do carry a wide range of other CNY goodies.

You get a nice paper bag to fit your 8 bottles when you get the Mega Premium Pineapple Tarts Bundle. 

I have tested all the different flavors for your already and I must say that they did well to blend stuff like Mala and even Truffle into the tarts that they still tasted pretty awesome. Cheese and Salted Egg are quite common these days but Mala was a first for me. Imagine spicy Pineapple tarts? Really never expected such a combination but tasted awesome!

Here are the Cheese, Mala and Truffle Charcoal! The black one sure looks premium with the brush of gold. Tastes great with that hint of truffle too!

Price aside, my honest opinion of the Pineapple tart, regardless of the flavors, are that all of them are melt-in-your mouth, delicious bite-sized goodies that you would want to pop in your mouth one after another. I am serious about that but you must practice self control lah, otherwise sure sore throat! Go order and grab yours from https://pineappletarts.sg/ now. 

They also have the Traditional Nyonya Pineapple Tarts as well!

Monday, December 6, 2021

A Night At The Airport 2D1N Family Camp

What do you say to a family camping trip deep in the forest, amidst the wonderful sound of mother nature, with the crickets’ chirps lulling you to sleep and waking up to the sound of birds calling? I do not know about you but it sure sounded great to me, especially when it is air-conditioned and confirmed mosquito-free!

Look how at home the Si Ginna is!

That was exactly what we did last week over in the Night At The Airport 2D1N Family Camp which I attended with the 4 older kiddos. We started the day early, with a visit to the team from the Airport Emergency Service Experience. Awesome fun learning how to save casualties, put out fires, get into cool vehicles and listen to real-life sharing by the team as well!

Learning more about the airport’s first responders!

Kiddos and adults can all try out some of the suits for photos!

We got to check out all the cool vehicles as well!

The kiddos learning how to properly put out a fire with the extinguisher! 

It was then followed by an exclusive tour of their Changi Nursery, which although is just beside the runway, is still quite a long coach ride away. And it is there where the kiddos get to build their own “green wall” with moss in the workshop to bring back and adults can buy back beautiful potted fauna as well! 

Kids get to enjoy building the "green wall" but adults can also pay to join in!

So this is where the sunflowers in the airport come from, and we even got some seeds to try planting too!

Awesome spot for some vacay-feeling photos!

Well, it can get pretty hot so one must drink up!

Learning about the Bougainvillea ‘Changi Airport’ that was recently discovered! Learn more here!

Then come the best part of all, as the kiddos get to attend a design-thinking workshop where they get to stretch their creativity while us adults get to relax in Changi Lounge for 2 hours! Woohoo! We also had access to bathing facilities within the lounge before getting into Changi Experience Studio for exclusive playtime from 8pm onwards as only campers had access to the place!

In their design-thinking workshop!

The only time when one can roam around in pajamas!

They had the whole place to themselves lor! So fun, but so tiring for adults!

We were allocated the area in the Garden of Harmony and our tents were already set up for us when we were refreshing ourselves. Kidding you not, my kiddos were super excited when shown the camp and we had so much fun playing games under the (artificial) stars without any worries about the weather! 


We are already missing this campsite. Really feels like being in the jungle but with all the creature comfort. 

Many had asked us what to look out for and the necessities to bring along. I think the chance of parents overpacking is quite high. If you ask me, just portable charger for your mobile (bring along power plug as you might get lucky), a change of clothing, towels, toothbrush and toothpaste will do lah. 

Please do note that we were only issued a "sleeping cushion" hor and they had recommended sleeping bags. We brought along but also never use in the end because we can sleep anyhow and anywhere lah. 

In any case, bring along your sense of fun and adventure, and treasure the precious family-bonding time! You can find out more information and also do your online booking of the camp over here - https://www.changiairport.com/en/changifestivevillage/stay/a-night-at-the-airport.html.

Tip: You can use your SingapoRediscovers Vouchers for this program. Book first before end of the year and utilize it before 31 Mar 22!

Monday, November 29, 2021

Christmas Tree Review

Less than a month before Christmas, but have you gotten your Christmas tree yet? If you are hoping to be in time to get it up, I would seriously advise against pinning all your hopes in your shipping from China. Or you might end up like us, with our Halloween costumes arriving way after October.

Our Granfeur 7ft Christmas Tree Bundle came packed like this (without the puppy).

Hence if you are looking at ordering one for THIS Christmas, your best bet would be getting the tree from companies with ready stock. We just got our Granfeur 7ft Christmas Tree from Pine Concept and I must say that the quality of their artificial Christmas trees is really not bad! Their prices ranges from $39.90 - $249.90 and I can guarantee it is much better than the cheaper trees we ordered before from other sites lor.

The branches were individually wrapped as well.

Look how bushy the individual branches looked after unwrapping!

You can consider getting their Christmas Tree Bundles which included Christmas ornaments such as basic baubles, tree toppers and lights, if you do not already have them and want to save the hassle. You will also save quite a fair bit of $$$ by getting them in a bundle rather than individually. But given their low price point, do take note that these are really the very basic plasticky stuff. Still looks good in photos lah!

Tada! Fixed it up in less than an hour!

There are pros and cons with having a real tree and a really life-like fake tree lah. But I feel a good quality fake one is so much more economical lor. So what are you still waiting? Still waiting for Christmas ah? Go get your now!

This post is a review collaboration between The "Perfect" Father & Pine Concept but all photos and views belongs solely ours. 

Saturday, October 30, 2021

Staycation at SG Hotel on Wheels

[Media Invite]

It has been a very long time since we slept in anywhere else other than our bedroom, where we, 2 adults + 5 children + our Maltipoo bunk in together! So naturally we were all really excited when we were booked for a one-night stay over at the latest talk of the town, the SGHotelonWheels recently. So to the East we travelled! 



I did wonder to myself on how our family of 7 would fare in a 40ft container but then again, we are so used to squeezing into small hotel / apartment rooms whenever we travel, that I think we would have absolutely no problem at all! In any case, we were booked into 2 containers, a 20-footer Retro Mambo and 40-footer Pop Art SHOWrooms for our staycation lor so all was good! Children above 12 are considered adults and there is a maximum capacity of 4A1C, 3A2C, 2A3C, or 1A4C for the 40-footer and 2A1C for the 20-footer SHOWrooms.



Front porch of our 40-footer SHOWroom.

We were ushered to our rooms upon the standard check-in at their front desk and it was really quite an experience to check into a container room lah. The small porch at the front with the fake grass turf, fake tree and beach chairs was a nice touch, adding to the vacay feel. No keys to hold too, because the room is secured with an electronic lock and you just need to key in your 4-digit password to unlock the door. The older kiddos were also free to go anywhere on their own after getting the hang of it.


This is our 20-footer SHOWroom.

Looks like your typical hotel room layout.

Very bright and cheerful!

Toilet and bathroom with rain shower.


Ok I shall address the cons first. The one biggie for us, would have to be the cost of the SHOWrooms, which ranges from $188 for a 20-footer on a weekday up to $358 for a 40-footer on a weekend (I checked from the website), may not be cheap for us lah! However, this is obviously not a problem for many, because the SHOWrooms were already fully-booked on many days liao, so you better hurry if you wanna try this unique experience! There are only 10 such rooms available and NTUC Members do get $30 off per night as well. 


Quite a lot of goodies!

Another thing that's missed (I cheapo lah), would have to be the inclusive hotel breakfasts. Even though we always sleep in late and miss our intercontinental breakfasts, it somehow still feels more complete with breakfast thrown in hor? But the rooms do come with quite a few free gifts from the sponsors lah, such as facial mask + ampoule from Allureskins Potions, disinfectant spray from Efil, corn snack from SHNACK, E.A mask + Bion spray from Ecom and even Vitamin-C tablets from Holistic Way.


A fully-functional kitchenette I would say in our 40-footer.

Very spacious toilet / bathroom too!

The booking of the containers does not come with any meals but our 40-footer does have a rather well-equipment kitchenette, with utensils and all. And the best thing would be Don Don Donki just within a short walking distance away to pack all our meals! There are of course lots of other eateries located at Downtown East and you will never go hungry for sure.


Kiddos enjoying their snacks while watching Netflix in our 40-footer. Protected by a giant ECOM 030+ air purifier too!

Your kiddos like the pool? But there's no swimming pool at the carpark lah. However all guest do get complimentary tickets to Wild Wild Wet nearby, which is a great thing IF you are booked over the weekend as the park is only open from Fridays - Sundays. Otherwise you can always utilize your tickets on another day lor which gives you more time to enjoy the comfort of the SHOWrooms lol.


Pardon the mess. But this is the view from our 40-footer bedroom.

There are your usual hairdryers and even an LED face mask for your beauty rest!

I would have honestly preferred waking up to nature, perhaps really just by the beach or in some forested area if I were to stay in the "portable" container SHOWroom again. But it is not as easy as plonking the container anywhere lah, considering the sanitation and utilities required. Plus, I would like to be able to buy all the food and stuff whenever I need lah. As of now, some fringe activities one get to try out after waking up in the carpark, would be complimentary bike rentals and discounted art classes by Fara Design Art Studio.



So was it still fun and enjoyable for us? Well according the the kiddos and wife, it was an overwhelming YES! The kiddos enjoyed the stay and loved how awesome our SHOWrooms looked and the wife even remarked that with Don Don Donki it felt as if we were in Japan, where we would just walk over to the nearest convenience store for our meal / snack fix whenever we felt like it! 

As for me, it was truly an unique experience, sleeping in the carpark while feeling as if I was on a cruise, but yet free to get onto land at any time. With the many fun amenities and F&B options over at Downtown East, a stay here can really be D’Ultimate XCape lor! With all the sanitizers and air-purifiers, I think it may even be cleaner than my house.

Go check them out at https://sghotelonwheels.com/ before end of Mar 22!

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Latest D-Link Compact Full HD Wi-Fi Cameras (DCS-6101LH & DCS-6501LH)

[Product Review]

We had been using D-Link IP cameras for the longest time, since 5 years ago with our very first DCS-960L which we are still using now! I think it is a pretty hardy good camera that had performed really well over the years, but can feel a little pricy at $209. Along the way, D-Link came up with newer cameras that comes with better clarity, functions and compatibility with popular Smart Homes apps such as Alexa or Google Assistant. I have not reached that stage of having to automate every damn thing yet, and is happy to be using their free and very user-friendly mydlink app. 

Actually with their app, you will even get free mydlink cloud recording for up to 3 devices for a day. But if that is not enough, like in my case because I use so many cameras, you can also choose to subscribe to their plans starting from $2.49/mth. The app also has security features that can rival the banking apps as well lor, and comes with 2FA and biometric security features for that added safety!

Dun pray pray, 5-times Best IP Camera Brand Winner liao.

In any case, we are absolutely stoked to be reviewing their two latest cameras, namely the DCS-6101LH & DCS-6501LH because I know they would come in very handy for our home indeed. The DCS-6101LH is the smaller and cheaper one in the left of the photo above but let me share the common features for both of them. It is amazing how much technologies had advanced while the cost had been brought down.

Personally I find that no need so many packaging material lah, because the camera and cables are quite compact already. I find that the DCS-6101LH looks like one-half of a crab's eyes. Cute.

Shared Features
  • Full HD 1080p Resolution
  • Sound / Motion Detection
  • Day / Night Vision
  • Rich Notification (Take action from your lockscreen)
  • Cloud Recording
  • Smart Home Compatible (Works with mydlink, Alexa and Google Assistant)


Both screenshot of the camera view of my very messy house looks the same lah, because both are full HD 1080p resolution mah.

The above features would have been sufficient for our use, but with the DCS-6501LH which is slightly more expensive, you will get additional features such as auto motion tracking, microSD card slot, pan & tilt function, 2-way audio and WPA3 encryption. If you were to ask me, I think I wouldn't mind paying just $10 more for DCS-6501LH just for the pan & tilt function which can give you an almost 360 degree view!

The DCS-6501LH has a slightly bigger casing that houses the rotating motors for the pan & tilt function. I actually had to search for the microSD card slot because I never read instructions but had to refer to it to find the slot right below the lens, hidden from view and visible only when the lens is pointed upwards.

So if you have the intention of setting up security cameras for your house, the Lazada 7.7 Great Singapore Sale may be the best time for you to buy the hardware from D-Link. I do have a link (https://bit.ly/3oRh8Ju) for you to get a $5 voucher if you are a new user. Aiyah last time I also never believe in sales until I started using the app and realized one can save quite a lot with the discount vouchers that you can stack and D-Link (https://www.lazada.sg/shop/d-link-official-store-new) is also giving out vouchers too! Just do not fall into the trap of buying useless stuff.

 


After writing so much, I still never mention the price hor? Actually this is really the selling point for the cameras! I ever wrote in my previous reviews of their cameras that although they perform well and really lasts, their price can be a little on the high side. This time round, guess what? The DCS-6101LH is only going for $39 while the higher end DCS-6501LH is only $49! If you get a few of these and use the discount vouchers in Lazada, you can get them even cheaper lor! Best deal I say!

Monday, April 26, 2021

Scarred for Life? There's help from The Clifford Clinic.

Ok, I am not talking about some traumatic life experiences that I have gone through, but rather the physical scars I carry on my face due to my very bad acne during my younger days. There are different types of acne scars such as boxcar, ice pick, and rolling scars and guess what? Damn it, I have all of them and I even had an aesthetic doctor tell me before, straight in my face that "Erm, your face ah, difficult." In any case, I have also never looked into any treatments for my scars because since married already, with 5 kids some more I think no need liao lah.

But hor last July, I actually got the opportunity to try out some rather fanciful acne scar laser removal treatments in consultation with Dr Gerard Ee from The Clifford Clinic. Straight from the onset, I went with an open mind and with not much of an expectation, especially after my earlier first experience with an aesthetic doctor. But Dr Gerard was quite positive though and worked out a schedule of different treatments for me to try out, and we agreed to just see how it goes. I was thinking to myself, no harm trying too, since my face can hardly get any worst lol...

Infini Acne Scar Treatment

The Infini acne scar treatment was first treatment that Dr Gerard performed on me. So what this treatment does, is to penetrate deeper into the dermis so as to stimulate the production of new collagen fibers so as to "level" the skin. 


I tell you hor, this treatment no joke. I had numbing cream applied to my face and was forewarned that it can be a little painful. Of course I was scared lah, but had to act brave as I sat in the chair. So the good doctor went one round my face with the laser and it felt like someone stapling my face softly with a bunch of microneedles. Can tahan, a little discomfort at this point only. 

I look very cool and collected but I think I was 'luning' nia... 

Ok what... not pain leh I thought... Until he started going over my face the second time and then the third time, going deeper and deeper each time. By the second time, I think I was already struggling to keep a straight face and was so glad once the treatment was over. Miraculously the treatment only left my face reddish leh and I was already ok by the third day. 

PICO MLA Laser Treatment

I felt more relaxed this time round, after going through Infini, which was supposedly the most painful of the lot I was going to try. And yes, it was definitely not as painful as Infini and I only felt minor discomfort. However I was told not to be alarmed by how I looked after the treatment and I was told not to share photos of my face somemore lor! 

For this treatment I need to wear safety googles, looking much like Ultraman ya?

Ok take my word for it, PICO MLA acne scare treatment confirm got downtime. Expect bleeding which would stop soon after the treatment and for scabs to form. In fact my kiddos got a scare when I was home from the first time of trying it. The laser treatment is supposedly great for enlarged pores, fine lines, wrinkles, uneven skin texture and acne scars.

Edge Fractional CO2 Laser Treatment

Fractional CO2 laser was the last type of treatment I tried, which is meant to trick your body into producing collagen by zapping your skin with lasers. There was minimal discomfort experienced but being able to smell your own skin being burnt can be quite an experience. As scary as that sounds, it is really the mildest treatment of the lot.

This is indeed the least painful of the 3 treatments and you can see the grid-like marks left by the lasers.

What I loved about the very short treatment, is that my face suddenly does not produce as much oil as before for at least a few days after treatment. I can feel minimal scabbing, with only raised dots at fixed intervals. If it does really make the skin produce collagen hor, I really wouldn't mind going for regular fixes! 

Does it work or am I scarred for life?

To be absolutely honest, I never expected just 6 treatment sessions to have a very impactful change to the 'weather-ravaged pockmarked' face I had since teen. I am already used to friends making fun of my face by comparing me to Mark Lee, but hey guess what? His complexion also improved quite a lot over the years and was also seeing Dr Gerard too.




I had only undergone a total of 2 sessions for each of the 3 different treatments over the course of half a year. And my wife commented that some of the scars does seem to be less obvious, especially the shallower ones. I honestly cannot see the difference myself, because I see my face everyday leh but the clinic did take photos every time I visited and yup, you can see for yourself in the before / after photos. 

I am of the opinion that for people with deep acne scars like myself, it is already considered very good if treatments can lighten the appearances of the scars. Any effective treatment would likely have to be a long drawn process, if one needs very visible improvements. After all, if Mark Lee is still undergoing maintenance to date, I probably need even more sessions lah! Aiyah, if my wife can love a face like mine, I am happy already. Besides, there are also lots of photo editing apps if one needs any touch ups lah! 

The Clifford Clinic is located at 24 Raffles Place #01-04, Clifford Centre Singapore 048621. You can reach them at 6532 2400 to schedule an appointment.