Sunday, March 1, 2015

Seven Pages of Fifty Shades of Glum

i tried to read it because there is now a movie which stars Bruce Willis' and Melanie Griffith's daughter. she looks like she got the best of the two of them so i naturally wanted to see the movie that she stars in. but i thought i'd read the book first, since it's in my bookshelf already coz somebody forcefully lent it to me back in France and i forgot to give it back before moving to SG.

fifty shades of "ho-hum" grey

but OMG. it is the most boring crap ever. i couldn't get past page 7. i think my Mills and Boon teenage pocket books are a lot lot better written than this crap. it was putting me to sleep. i stopped reading it for fear that i might dream about it and continue getting bored in my dream.

now, i'm having second thoughts about seeing the movie.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Le Nouvel An Chinois

cette année, on a décidé de rester à Singapour pendant le nouvel an chinois. c'est parce qu'on était trop paresseux de decider de quoi à faire et où peut-on aller pour prendre les vacances.

this is how you make Spritz... first, some bubbly drink (prosecco or champagne, or this time, we had some cava from Spain)

add some apérol (we are so glad to have bought this one in Italy since it's three times more expensive here)

and finally, some sparkling water (we used San Pellegrino)
it's good to make use of the abundant mandarin oranges during Chinese New Year... don't you just love this vibrant color?

pendant le long weekend, il y avait mes beaux-parents qui étaient là pendant deux semaines pour nous rendre visite.

on a juste profité le temps des vacances pour aller manger dans les bons restaurants et pour visiter quelques endroits sympa ici  à Singapour qu'on avait pas l'occasion de visiter avant.

et pour fêter le nouvel an chinois, on a visité un carnaval près de la rivière avec la petite. elle s'est vraiment régalée dans quelques tours de manège.

le soir, on a resté dans la maison tranquille et decider de faire un dîner simple et de faire un cocktail vraiment spécial.

Spritz with the view of the city from our balcony

fancy a dip? :)

best shared with loved ones... chin chin!
et voila!.. c'est la fin de l'histoire. je souhaite un magnifique nouvel an chinois chèvre à nous! :)

Friday, February 6, 2015

Tracking Shipments

i am a huge fan of online shopping. this fanaticism borders on addiction just a teeny tiny bit. :)

i think what i best love about it is the part of waiting to receive something at your doorstep. it's the thrill and the anticipation and the looking forward to receiving that something special that gives a bitter-sweet feeling to it. bitter because it might not be what you expect in person, or that it just doesn't fit well... if it arrives at all! but if all goes well -- arriving just in time, fitting well, looks even better in person, then you really feel very lucky and very happy for making such good judgments.

everybody loves bitter and sweet. it's like chocolate -- bitter + sweet.

and the part that especially makes me super crazy about it is when i can track the progress of my package online. which makes the anticipation and the wait all the more exciting!

wow! my package has visited Biarritz before me

here you can see the tracking details of my Ted Baker dress. i had no idea it was coming from UK since i ordered on the French web site where it was on sale.

i was starting to worry when it was taking too long in processing each time i check the status online. i was really hoping it will make it on Thursday at my parents-in-law's place so that they can bring it with them this weekend when they arrive at our place.

and i am just so happy my package made it in time. definitely super happy with my Ted Baker order for the fast delivery. and also for the half-price sale! :)

and now, i have the weekend to really look forward to. bon weekend, everyone! :)

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Physio Pilates Experience

one of the torture machines at the physio pilates gym
ever since having a baby, my back has never been the same. during the first few months after delivery, it was extremely painful getting up in the morning. and it was always painful when i stay in a single position for a long time.

since then, i have always been taking physio, or when i was in France, going to the kiné.

here in Singapore i have tried going to the physiotherapist also. i have had a couple of physiotherapists in the same clinic, which is quite close to our place. my sessions were quite good but they seem to offer temporary relief... after the stretching and the massage, the pain would just come back again.

this time, i ventured into trying physio with pilates. and i was quite lucky to be able to find a french kiné. i never thought it would be advantageous to get a woman kiné over a guy one. until i realized that a woman is less restricted when it comes to touching your upper body parts to loosen the muscles, while a guy one would only touch your back and the extremities. :)

i have been taking the physio pilates for quite some time now. it has helped me a lot on improving my posture and working on my core muscles. the best part of it all is that i have also found out that i do not have a diastasis recti so i can now start doing more abdominal workouts. :)

Saturday, January 3, 2015

The Best of the Year

a well-cherished trip to Ubud, Bali with family and visiting friends from France

last summer's trip to France (here at Le Cantou, a lovely restaurant with a huge orchard right next to the airport)

having a smiley, giggly moment inside the Flower Dome at Gardens by the Bay with my cutie pie who cannot keep still for even a second

the view below from where we were seated at Salt Grill and Sky Bar during my surprise birthday dinner date with hubby

a colorful platter of tropical fruits at the breakfast buffet of Kad Kafé at the Shangri-La Hotel in Chiang Mai, where my family spent the holidays

refreshing spa at Fah Lanna in Chiang Mai

a blue margarita at some café close to our hotel during our last evening in Chiang Mai

these were some of my many favorite images taken by my iPhone throughout the past year. i have always had a fixation on images. most people do, i think. at least for the sentimental lot. and for those who cherish memories. these images help aid the memory of things and tiny bits of rare moments when we considered everything perfect... and all that perfection captured in a tiny rectangular frame encoded in bits of zeros and ones, which nowadays even seem to have more meaning when gathering likes on Facebook or Instagram.

a very simple New Year's Eve Dinner with family and friends

a star-studded selfie, the last for the year (no filter, folks)

traditional round fruits to bring prosperity and good tidings for this new year... and some home-made spritz for auld lang syne and to commemorate the best road trip of the year in Tuscany

a lovely view of Marina Bay's skyline from our balcony where we watched New Year's fireworks

2014 was one of the best years i've had in my life. i have had a lot of good experiences in travels, enjoyed being with loved ones and managed to get back to work again after three years!

it has also, hopefully made me wiser and better as a person in terms of experiences and wisdom. and speaking of wiser and better, i think this year, i will be doing a lot less of facebook and social media. i personally think it corrupts and corrodes the mind, the body and the soul and puts weight on social relationships. i'm not saying it's a bad thing. but i stick to the old adage that too much of anything is not a good thing at all.

i hope we all have a wonderful 2015 -- good health, good life, good relationships and good vibes! ;)

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Best Christmas Gift Ever: MacBook Pro with Retina

my first ever mac was the first ever model of macbook pro. i bought it during my first year in Singapore. and it has been my trusted companion for seven years now.

this year, i received one of the best Christmas Gifts ever -- the macbook pro with retina screen:

it came with a very minimalistic clean gift box

english translation: Merry Christmas My Love!

and a "Merry Christmas" it is, indeed! :)

it was love-at-first-sight, just like with my old mac

couldn't really wait for Christmas to open it and start using it

you need an AppleID and have to be connected to the internet to set up everything on initial boot

hubby thought of everything -- he even bought me this laptop slip case... so sweet and so thoughtful! :)

it's a little bit smaller compared to my old mac

a bit of a downside -- i actually prefer the silver keypad as it's not so painful to the eyes in the dark when it gets back-lit

and here i am, using it for the first time... and totally loving it!

i really love the new macbook pro with retina technology. and it's not only this retina screen that i love. i also love how it's using SSD, which makes it noiseless. it's also lighter and it has HDMI.

i know having a mac is a bit expensive compared to the other laptops. but my macbook pro of seven years is still usable up to now. i only had to replace the battery once. and during all the seven years that i had it, you can count with your fingers the number of times it crashed... so in the end, it's really worth all that money. although it's still usable and working perfectly well, it's starting to get behind in terms of the latest technologies... i'm going to miss the old mac just like an old friend. but, sometimes, we need to make room for new things in our lives so we don't get left behind and become obsolete.

Merry Christmas, everyone! :)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

La Ferme aux Grives

December for me is all about reminiscing about the best experiences of the year that is almost about to come to an end. and so this December, i'm starting a blogpost about the best experiences i've had this year. and what better way to begin this than by talking about food.

the best restaurant experience i had was of course back in France during our family visit in the summer. my in-laws took us to this nice restaurant called La Ferme aux Grives in a small ville called Eugenie-les-Bains, in the South of France, not far from where my in-laws live.

the restaurant was set in the middle of a lovely garden, at the edge of a huge farm, and is owned by a two-Michelin starred chef, Michel Guerard.

the ancient stone house that makes up the restaurant of La Ferme Aux Grives

Charming signage by the main entrance right on top of a small pear tree

we were seated right across this table with fresh produce, right behind is a huge oven

suckling pig, quietly roasting in a corner

jambons and herbs hung on ancient chandeliers

our table setting -- notice the heavy silverware

no meal is complete without fine wine

the strawberries in this slice of heavenly Charlotte were extraordinarily fresh and delicious

lovely window framing

charming and rustic -- just the way i like it

even the toilet is lovely and full of character

this is the herbs and vegetable garden right beside the restaurant. there were leeks and onions, lavender and lots of sweet-smelling herbs that bring out the characteristic smell of summer in France

dandelions growing through holes on this rusty garden chair

Un rêve accessible (a reachable dream)

i had so much fun taking photos all over the place, until i realized taking photos is not allowed... trop tard!

went for a walk around the farm after lunch... the surroundings took me back to the relaxing, refreshing and familiar countryside setting of my very own childhood

having a meal at La Ferme aux Grives is one of the best experiences i've had in 2014. it was a perfect summer day with family and friends in a lovely setting. the food in the dishes was fresh and each plate was beautifully-presented, the ambience was wonderful, calm and relaxing. the service was impeccable and the staff were friendly. they even made an impromptu birthday cake and bouquet from their garden for my belle-mère. and most importantly, taking pictures was supposed to be prohibited but nobody stopped me from shooting away anyway with my huge camera. i guess they make exceptions for rare asian tourists. :)