Jul 27, 2016

4 The AINO Warehouse Sale, I'm Done With Gift Shopping!

Would you believe that I'm done with Christmas gift shopping already? It all happened when I popped into AINO's warehouse sale at Desa ParkCity over a month back.

I love going into this home furnishing store. It is my place of happy. They sell exquisite kitchen and tableware at reasonable prices. The bright red ads they had placed strategically along several roads were effective in getting my attention. Hubs and I made our way to the warehouse sale that was organised in an open carpark

This mandoline was going for RM30. I'd been eyeing for one the longest time; it had always been too expensive ranging from RM80 to as high as RM300. This is a steal!
 
Mandoline

What's Inside The Mandoline

Tadaaa..my new toy! Ready for slicing and grating action.

A Stand And Various Cutting Blades

We checked out every corner of the sale. There were so many pretty things. Then, we saw it. This item (pictured below) originally costs RM14.90 per set. Guess how much I got it for at the sale. What thing? It's a secret known only to few.

"Wow, this would make a great Christmas gift . I'll take ten-lah." So I told the young chap who was assisting us.

"What do you mean ten. We'll take the whole carton!" My husband quipped in excitedly.

That's 24 in a carton and we paid RM24 for all of it. Yes, it went down to RM1 each! I am feeling so blessed by this phenomenal find.

The Secret Christmas Gift

That's why I love going to warehouse sales. It's like a play centre for adults. Here's a couple of photos showing what the scene is like.

AINO Warehouse Sale

AINO Warehouse Sale

Coincidentally, AINO is running a small-scale sale at their stores right now for selected items. Check their website out to see the bargains.

As for me, I think I have enough to hold off shopping until the next warehouse adventure. Or do I ..

Jul 23, 2016

10 Spring Cleaning - Stuff Happens!

The plan was to redecorate the bedroom, but this has gone on to become a major spring-cleaning exercise that includes the store room.

Stuff happens when you're doing so many things at one go. I accidentally snapped the drawer bottom into half. It felt like my heartbeat dropped for a moment as I stared at the broken piece in tiny panic. The feeling washed over; I'm planing to tape it up and am keeping my fingers crossed that it can at least hold up lingerie.

What do you think? Can she-hulk, that's me, save this?

Broken Drawer Bottom

It was part of a 3-drawer cabinet that I had purchased from IKEA many years ago.

IKEA Drawer Cabinet

The Daiso vacuum seal bags are proving very useful. I have not vacuumed these items flat yet since I have more bags to fill. It's taking me a lot of time because my small washing machine can only handle so much abuse and the drying area? Fits two comforters, max! Besides that, pillows and soft toys take at least 3 days to dry.

Guess how many pillows are packed here in the picture below? ..At least 6 sleeping pillows, 10 cushion pillows, 4 bolster pillows. Then, I've got comforters, bedspreads and a sofa cover too. That leaves 10 blankets and a bag full of bedsheets still to pack.

You must be wondering why I have so many bedding items. In addition, I have three sofa beds and 2 mattresses. I get a lot of visitors staying over. Taking people jalan-jalan (sight-seeing) is an activity I love.

Pillows, Comforters And Bedspreads

It looks like it'll be sometime before I start with the wall-painting but that's okay. I'm in no rush.

Jul 20, 2016

14 Die-lor, I'm At Daiso ..And I Bought More Than Vacuum Seal Bags

Die-lor, I'm at Daiso. This means an excitable me and a bout of over-spending. All the items are priced at RM5.30 making it one of the best stores to shop for presents and household items for the budget-conscious.

I was here to get some storage bags, the vacuum seal kind. Spring cleaning is the new exercise. I always feel good after a major one and I'm midway through the bedroom. It needs to be revamped, the walls painted, curtains changed, cabinets re-organised and so forth. I've been washing all sorts of things from soft toys to old pillows the past couple of weeks. Four bags of used items have been donated away. I'm always surprised by the number of things we accumulate over the years! It feels like yesterday that I gave away ten bags of stuff ..

As it is, I did over-buy at Daiso, a few lovely tray organisers making their way into my shopping basket. It was white and had these beautiful carvings around the sides. I thought it'd be perfect for keeping our skin and beauty products neatly in place. No more using old recycled chocolate tins - these I'm saving for gift-wrapping.

On the vacuum seal bags, I wasn't sure which would be the better buy so I brought home two varieties - one a plain ziplock bag in XXXL size and the other with a valve.

Vacuum Seal Bags

I dug my vacuum cleaner out and proceeded to vacuum pack my bedspread and comforter. It worked like a charm - both items were flattened to half its size. I cannot wait to do the same with the fluffy pillows!

Vacuum-Packing To Save Space

I wasn't too pleased about the one that had the valve in the beginning because it didn't look aesthetically pleasing with a huge button sticking out on top. However, compared to the other, it proved to be the user-friendlier one! Without the valve, it wasn't easy to vacuum the bag flat. The plastic kept getting sucked into the vacuum cleaner .. perhaps I'm not doing it quite right.
 
Vacuum Seal Bag With Valve - Easy-Peasy!

Vacuum Seal Bag Without Valve - Phew! Hard Work!

Therefore, it will be the one with the valve for me from now onwards!

Have you any storage tips for large items?

Jul 14, 2016

16 In A Village Far, Far Away ..

 ....lived this girl (me), her family and the relatives. It was a world of greenery and beaches. Then, she moved to the concrete jungle of the city. The fairy tale faded away leading to a life akin to those you read in chick lits.

Anyway, I was back in my hometown for some two weeks just before Raya. The one thing I love doing at the kampung (village) I grew up in is to take pictures of trees and plants around the compound. I don't know if it's true but it is said that seeing greenery improves our eyesight. So feast your eyes on this.

Coconut, mango, rambutan, jackfruit - these are some of the trees that are grown here. There used to be a guava plant at the back of the house which I was fond of climbing. The fruit had pink flesh. There was also a soursop tree but both are gone now.

Mango Tree (left), Coconut Tree (at the back)

These are some of the trees that are fruiting at the moment.

Banana Trees

Mango Tree

Mangoes

Pineapple Plant

Papaya Tree

I gave my aunt the seeds to grow this blue pea flower plant. So happy it's flourishing!

Blue Pea Flowers / Bunga Telang
 
The cassava tree. Haven't eaten this in a quite a while.

Tapioca

There's herbs like basil and lemongrass plus aromatic pandan leaves.

Sweet Basil

Life may look laid-back in the village but the amount of effort people put towards gardening, picnicking and get-togethers after a day in the office is really something to me. Comparing city life, I guess the difference is one finds joy in doing the things they do, hence a feeling that nothing is too much to do. The other is stressed out from things they don't want to do like being stuck in the office all day, being caught in traffic jams and getting too focused on earning a living rather than making a life. Not everyone, of course. Just generally.


Jul 11, 2016

18 Dragon City Bak Kut Teh, Kepong

Bah Kut Teh (BKT), a delicious pork soup cooked for hours in Chinese herbs and spices, is the stuff that warms the body and makes you feel good on a chilly day.

It is my comfort food and I have been having lots of it lately. My husband knows of my love affair with BKT. If it's mentioned as a lunch 'suggestion', it will most likely be our meal of the day. I'm grinning as I type this.  

We popped into a BKT restaurant in Kepong impromptu one evening. Besides BKT, we ordered a soy sauce pork belly claypot dish, lettuce greens and chinese crullers.

The yummy food:

Bak Kut Teh

I was wearing a bright yellow tee. Coincidentally, yellow was the theme of this restaurant too so, I blended right in with the waiters! Hubs kept teasing me about it.

Dragon City Bak Kut Teh, Kepong

I enjoyed the food and the friendliness of the staff. They were a jovial lot.

The Ambiance

The View

To end, should you happen to wear a shirt and colour similar to that of the waiters of the restaurant that you intend to have your meal at, would you shy away from walking in and choose to eat elsewhere instead?

Jun 10, 2016

22 It's A Seremban Food Trip!

How I love weekends. It's either a trip out of town, the movies, visiting new neighbourhoods or a day with my closest friend. I could go on -- goo-gooing over fresh produce at the local grocer, wandering through bustling pasar malams (night markets), taking in the flowers at Lot 61 ...

This one weekend, Hubs and I decided on a food trip to Seremban. We started with brunch at a banana leaf restaurant and ended the day with a Lucky King Bun takeaway.

Curry Leaf Restaurant
Eating with your hands? It's the stuff of heaven. Leave the spoon and fork aside. I'm exaggerating but truth be told, there's nothing quite like a meal of rice and curry on banana leaf enjoyed without the taste of stainless steel and the awkward twists and turns of a fork to cut out a piece of meat from fried fish. Use your fingers - it's the most authentic and easiest way to eat. When in Rome, do as the Romans do ...or we could go with -- 'It's a free world.' Whatever makes you happy. 

Banana Leaf Rice

We paid just a little over RM30 for two banana leaf rice sets, mutton, fried fish, and drinks. The set comes with a basket of papadum and would you believe 8 side dishes? That's not counting the gravy. I was bowled over by the variety and the generous portion!

Banana Leaf Rice with 8 Side Dishes

After we finished our meal, they served us a bowl of payasam. It was a delicious dessert that I would have asked for seconds had I not been full.

Payasam

We reached the place at 11.30am. It was good timing and we avoided the crowd. The restaurant was full from 12PM-ish.

Curry Leaf Restaurant - The Ambiance

Curry Leaf Restaurant, Seremban

Restoran Curry Leaf
Address: 1273-1275 Jalan Rasah, Seremban, 70300 Seremban, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia.

Lucky King Bun
Again? Yes, again! We had a goal to try all three varieties of the bun. It took several separate trips to achieve this but I'm happy to report that it's now 'mission accomplished'. Chicken Curry, Pork Curry, Dongpo Pork - been there, ate that!

My first experience: Food Discovery : Lucky King Bun, Port Dickson
The second: A Love Affair With Giant Curry Buns

And now this:

Giant Buns Fresh Out Of The Oven!

Yin Yong Pork Curry / Dongpo Pork Bun

The RM40 price tag on this bun is no surprise considering that there are two meat dishes wrapped inside.

Curry (left), Dongpo Pork (right)

Address: 28 & 29, Jalan MPK6, Medan Perdagangan Kepayang, Lebuhraya Seremban - Bukit Nenas, 70200 Seremban, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia.
Phone:+60 11-3129 9393
Hours: 11:30AM–10PM

What's next on my bucket list? A trip to Kampar, my dad's hometown, to try out more huge Curry Buns. Who's with me?


Jun 6, 2016

10 Property : Elmina, Shah Alam

It's been a long time since Hubs and I went property hunting! We're two weird people who love checking out what's new in the housing market. I'm baffled by our interest seeing that we're neither investors nor agents. We're not in a rush to put our money down on landed property either but you never know ... *wink*

This was a Sunday outing that was unplanned. There had been a terrible thunderstorm just before the weekend, so we decided that it was best to postpone driving too far out of town. We went exploring the wide expanse of Elmina, a new township developed by Sime Darby instead.

We checked out a couple of recently completed homes on our own, namely Keana and Regia, before running into Vincent Tan, a Senior Property Negotiator who was already there showing a potential customer around.

These are some pictures I took of the place. There is no shortage of empty units up for sale as you can see from the banners hung on the fence.

Elmina Keana

Elmina Regia

Children's Park, Elmina Keana

Elmina is neat and peaceful. I like the serenity. Done properly, it would be a really beautiful place to live in. For the moment, it lacks the basic needs of a typical community - there's no grocer, mamak or clinic nearby. Haha, I'd be happy with just these three shops!

Vincent took us for a tour inside an empty Cressida unit. It was spacious and bright with more than enough large windows to allow lots of natural light to come through. There is no need to switch the lights on in the daytime, saving some electricity. That's a plus point for me!

Elmina Cressida
Secondly, the back lanes are spacious enough for garbage trucks to drive through. This could mean no rubbish bins lining up the front porch. Neat!

I didn't snap any photos of the interior as I felt it looked fairly the same as any other bare unit until it's done up, as in fully decorated.

Elmina Cressida

Exercise Park, Elmina Cressida

This is not a gated community which is great too. We shouldn't be a society that thrives on paying to be safe or to have beautiful gardens. The spirit of 'gotong-royong' should be inculcated from young. It is something that is becoming rare in this generation.

Elmina Crista

Elmina Crista

I would say that Elmina's a great neighbourhood to live in. Driving is a breeze. The only thing that could mess this place up would be poor planning of roads (insufficient parking for commercial zones and lanes for high traffic) and drainage for heavy rainfall. As I have no clue as to what the developers have planned, I can only keep my fingers crossed that they are far-sighted professionals.

That said, I've never met a more down-to-earth property agent. I may not know Vincent personally but I firmly believe that it's better to deal with someone who is truthful about the current state of affairs in the property sector than one who sings that there's nothing wrong with it.


Finally, I'm not sure if I got the names for all the units right. I found it quite a challenge to tell them apart!
Property is priced from RM800K.

Jun 1, 2016

22 Eat All You Can At A Minor Place - It's Only RM11

It is, to date, the cheapest Chap Fan (Mixed Rice / Economy) style lunch buffet that I know of - with fried noodles tossed into the mix.  The catch? None, except that you pay extra if you waste and you have to reuse your plate. Sounds fair to me! This would be heaven for big eaters. Hubs went straight for it.

Round 1 - Lala, Chicken, Fried Rice

Me? I chose to go ala carte and ordered Wat Tan Hor (an eggy noodle dish) that Sunday. It was just one of those times that I craved for wet noodles. Oh, well.

Flat Noodles In Egg Gravy

I took a peek into A Minor Place's Facebook page and noticed how kind and generous the owners are. They clearly have a charitable heart. A story published on Star Online tells how the owners, in order to prevent food wastage, distribute what's left uneaten to security guards in the area.

The other thing that warmed me to them is that they do not practise ageism. Retirees are welcome to apply for jobs here. It is something I long to see more of in our society.

I don't know about you but anything that puts the warm-and-fuzzy in me is a great place to eat. My taste buds aren't solely dictated by perfectly cooked steak or macarons baked on point. It includes my feelings, and I'm feeling really good about this place. Hubs and I enjoyed our meal.

A Minor Place
We will be back!

Address:
A Minor Place
Block G-0-11, Plaza Damas,
60 Jalan Sri Hartamas 1,
Sri Hartamas, 50480 Kuala Lumpur.
Contact number : 03 - 6211 7418
11.30am to 2.30PM - Buffet Lunch RM11 daily
Non-Halal


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Random thoughts --
Something I wrote for Ivy, a friend whom I love to bits.

Everyone needs a friend who says, "Hold on, this isn't right! Stop!"
That's my buddy for you. It takes guts to have real friends.
It's easy to surround ourselves with "yes" people, the forever-supportive (even when you do wrong) ones
but to grow into the best version of ourselves, we're gonna need an Ivy in our lives.
Someone who reels you in when you go overboard with the bad stuff.
Someone who says it's ok to fall but you gotta get up.



May 27, 2016

22 A Little Gardening, I'm Mad With The Rain

It was a hot afternoon. Still, I put my gardening gloves on, motivated to breathe new life into the long neglected spot of green in my balcony area. If plants could talk, I'm pretty sure I'd be reported to teledera for abuse.

Two bags of different soil were mixed together, new pots were filled and moved, vegetable seeds were planted, fingers were crossed. Beads of sweat rolled down the sides of my cheek. I could feel the burn from the midday sun.

"Vitamin D, it's only Vitamin D ..good for you. " I muttered amusingly to myself.

I ignored the heat, rubbing the sweat away with the sleeves of my shirt. I knew if I stopped to rest, I'd probably get too comfortable to continue.

I used the gardening trowel to loosen the soil in the old potted plants and sprinkled a bit of fertiliser over. The plants were trimmed and weeds were pulled out. Finally, the tiled floor was swept and mopped. By then, I was sticky and sweaty all over but feeling really proud of myself. I wish you could see the huge satisfied grin on my face. If I did take a pic, it'd be a selfie I wouldn't put on social media.

I wasn't done yet though. I still had to wash and keep away the gardening tools. That I did, before finally sitting down with a mug of iced tea. Aah...how satisfying.

I thought I heard the rumble of thunder but I was too exhausted to really notice, that is, until I realised that rain was beating down on the balcony glass door.

"Nooo....unbelievable! "  I was flabbergasted to see the garden bench which I had just wiped down, splashed mercilessly with rainwater. A huge puddle had formed near the drainpipe. The floor was wet and dirty again!

It was sunny just a moment ago. The unfairness of it all -- gah! I was really looking forward to having a bath...I lay on the cool tiled floor, powerless, waiting.

These are some pictures I took of my plants and the creatures that thrive there.

Can you spot the ant between the leaves?

Spider Plant With A Large Ant
Cyanide millipede ? Sure looks like it.

A Millipede, Baby Millipedes and The Snail

My potted turmeric plant wasn't doing well so I decided to pull it out, and discovered this. Lucky me! I could blend this into a curry paste.

Turmeric

My other turmeric plant is looking quite healthy. To tell you the truth, I threw a couple of old turmerics here sometime ago not really hoping for anything.

Turmeric Plant

My ginger plant, whom I've nicknamed Gina, grows really fast. I've trimmed the plant several times already!

Ginger

Don't believe me? See this. I cut the stem just three days ago. Look how much it has grown.

Ginger Plant

Finally, this is my money plant which has crawled 7ft up.

Money Plant

The rain finally stopped. I waited for the floor to dry out a little before cleaning the place up again. What a day! It was good exercise. I would describe it as " Drama betullah! " (Full of drama!)


 

Elephants & Mangoes Copyright © 2005 - 2016 |- Template created by O Pregador Aldenir Ara├║jo - |- Powered by Blogger Templates