Sunday, May 31, 2015

Fliker rides at Punggol Point Park

It has been awhile since we visit Punggol Point Park. Apart from the restaurants and cafes blooming in the area, many are engaged in the outdoor activities like horse-riding, skating, cycling and scooting.

We rented 2 bicycles and flikers for our evening workout and the kids were extremely excited to be back in the outdoors once more. It was our first time on the Flikers - a 3 wheeled scooter, suitable for all ages. We took turns to hop on the Flikers, maneuvering our hands and legs and shaking our bodies in order to scoot. ^_^

I must admit that Hubby and the children were faster to master the flikers while I struggle to make myself move faster. 

Siblings having a mini competition to see who can reach the finishing point first.

It was a great workout and I believe we will be back soon for more fun rides!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Restoran TaSiXi (大四喜香港点心小厨) @ Impian Emas

It was a 2D1N trip into Johor Bahru with my in-laws.  Thanks to a family friend, we were guided to a nice restaurant at Impian Emas for Dim Sum (点心). Restoran TaSiXi (大四喜香港点心小厨) has a couple of outlets around JB and it seems to be one of the popular Dim Sum place to go for the locals.

Similar to the Dim sum restaurants in Hong Kong, staff will carry a large tray with a variety of dim sum dishes on it for your selection. If you have something in mind, just call out your order and it will be delivered to your table.

Siewmai (烧卖), Har gao (虾饺), Chee Cheong Fun (猪肠粉) are some of our favourite that we will always order.

Golden Bun (金沙包)

Gladys' favourite dim sum is 金沙包. She adores licking the rich salted egg yolk filling flowing out of the bun the moment she chunks her teeth into it. Best to savour when it is warm. This is one dim sum that we would not mind ordering more for our family to share. 

Shanghai Xiao Long Bao (上海小笼包)

Another must order at TaSiXi is their Shanghai Xiao Long Bao (RM7). Not only is the price reasonable, the skin of the steamed dumplings is smooth, thin and tender. Fresh minced meat and juicy delicious soup within the filling made it even more enjoyable and fun to taste.

Herbal Jelly (龟苓膏)

Fruit tarts 

Apart from a wide variety of Dim sum to choose, Restoran TaSiXi also serve desserts! We tried 龟苓膏 and Fruit Tarts which were refreshing and sweet, perfect to conclude our meal.

Special Thanks to Uncle who treated our family for an exceptional filling and yummy breakfast. We could not figure the total 'damages' we incurred for our meal but I believe it was reasonable and affordable. If you are looking out for a nice place for dim sum which is not overly pricey, this would be one of the alternatives.

Restoran TaSiXi (大四喜香港点心小厨)
Address: No. 5 Jalan Impian Emas 5, Taman Impian Emas, 81300 Johor, Malaysia 
GPS: 1.543241, 103.684098

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Hwa Kuo Shan (花果山) @ Sedenak

In the Legend of Monkey God, Sun Wu Kong was born from a mythical stone and crowned the Monkey King of Hwa Kuo Shan (花果山). Do you know that there is a Hwa Kuo Shan temple at Kampung Baru Sedenak that is dedicated to the Monkey God?

Located about 34km (21 miles) from Johor Bahru, it seems like many pilgrims visit the temple to seek lottery luck judging from the numbers that can be seen everywhere around the area.

Beside worshiping the Chinese deities, Hwa Guo Shan also houses the Thailand Buddha. The coffee shop at the right side of the temple serves as a resting point, providing refreshment and snacks.

Overlooking the small hill is a panorama scenic view of the 12 Chinese Zodiac statues and Guanyin Bodhisattva sitting on the hill top. You can take the stairways and climb up to the top and have a close up view of the sculptures.

Statues of the 12 Chinese Zodiac animals

Fish pond

Tortoise pond

Next to the tortoise pond are bathing rooms where visitors can take a bath with the blessed water. Some even use the water to wash their car plate number hoping to be Lucky! "Heng Heng"

Hwa Kuo Shan would not have earned its name without the presence of monkeys. They are practically everywhere around the premises! Jumping on the rooftops, swinging on the cable, sitting by the ledge or even eyeing on your food!

Beware! Some monkeys can be quite hostile even when you try to take a picture. If you have young children with you, do keep a lookout and stay close to them.

Some monkeys seems rather tame. We spotted the Mommy and baby pair where she sat quietly with her little one clinging onto her - a heartwarming sight.

If you are keen and feeling daring enough, you may purchase peanut packets from the coffee shop to feed the monkeys. We brought some packets along with us and Hubby lead the children to feed the long-tailed imps.

Merely seconds after we made our way down, the monkeys swarmed towards our group. Despite feeling a little afraid, Denver & Gladys managed to satisfy their tummies by throwing the peanuts towards them.

Taking turn to savour the peanuts...

It can be quite daunting seeing so many monkeys within the temple but also an interesting one. For once, the children did not feel bored and was always on guard!

Hua Guo Shan (花果山) 
Address: Kampung Baru Sedenak, 81010 Kulai, Johor
GPS: 1.690758, 103.512730

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Yangtze Hotel (Permas Jaya)

It was a short trip into Johor Bahru and we decided to pick another hotel to stay in Permas Jaya since the area has many eateries in the vicinity.

Yangtze Hotel (formerly known as The Great Wall Hotel) offers a variety of rooms (Superior, Deluxe, Executive, Family Suites) which comes with free WIFI. For those who are driving in, you may like to know that there is no security guard on duty. Instead, Yangtze has a covered car porch (within the hotel) which can park up to a maximum of 12 cars. If you wish to leave your car within the car porch (particularly overnight), you need to leave your car keys at the counter in case the staff needs to move your car to allow the movement of other vehicles.

We booked a Family room for our stay which comes with 2 Queen beds. Room is relatively clean and spacious. It is equipped with basic facilities including a mini fridge, coffee maker, hair dryer, iron and ironing board. It also comes with 2 extra pillows.

The family room has one attached bathroom which comes with toothbrushes (exclude toothpaste), towels, soap and shower gel.

With the recent implementation of a 6% GST, we paid RM178.10 (Weekend rate - RM168 + 6%GST) for the family room. Cheaper rates for weekday.

We had a pleasant stay at Yangtze as it fulfills the following basic requirements.

1) Air-condition is cooling
2) Clean bedding and toilets
3) Variety of TV channels available
4) Strong Wifi signal with multiple connections
5) Strong water jets from the shower
6) Safety!

Yangtze Hotel
Address: No. 70, 72, 78 & 80, Jln Permas 10, Permas Jaya, 81750, Johor
GPS: 1.499129, 103.815464

Want to find out more where you can stay in Johor Bahru?
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Friday, May 22, 2015

Ayer Hitam - Town of Pottery and Crafts

During our drive-in to Johor Bahru, we passed by Ayer Hitam. Located at one of the interchange along North-South Expressway (junction of route 1 and 50), the town is well known for pottery and crafts.

Take a walk down the streets of the laid back town and you can find more hidden gems within.

Cute stuff toys

If you are looking for assorted stuff toys of various sizes, this is definitely a place to consider and explore.

Ceremic pots, cups, bowls, plates, vases - something that you can find for your home.

Fruit stalls


Snacks and tibits

It was a hot afternoon and the streets were quiet during our visit. We had the luxury to browse through the stalls and it felt as if I was back to my childhood days. Ayer Hitam has retained its charm over the years and continues to be an attraction to the locals and tourists with it's nostalgic look and feel.

If you are travelling up to Kuala Lumpur, do consider stopping by and take some quiet moments to enjoy the craft works and potteries.

Ayer Hitam
Address: Jalan Besar, 86100, Ayer Hitam, Johor, Malaysia
GPS: 1.917876, 103.180066

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Media Invite: Scrapbooking Workshop with Canon Singapore

Art and Craft has always been one of my favourite hobby hence I was extremely thrilled when Canon Singapore and Claudia invited us to join the scrapbooking workshop last Sunday. Together with other parents bloggers, we gathered at BWB (Burger Vs Wings + Bar) at Orchard Central,  all set for a fun-filled afternoon.

Advancement in technology has made printing of photos so easy and convenient. Introducing Canon PIXMA MG7570, a wireless photo all-in-one printer where you can enjoy mobile printing using the Canon PIXMA/Maxify Printing Solution app. Simply download the app, connect your mobile to the printer, select your photos and start printing!

Another interesting product which was showcased at the workshop was Canon Rayo R4 - a mini projector with built-in speaker ideal for entertainment and work purposes. The slim design makes it portable and fitting into the pocket. Its plug and play feature also enables you to display content from your smart devices to a big screen. I can imagine bringing this along to chalet where the children can gather for a late night movie.

After a sumptuous lunch provided by BWB, it was time to start scrapbooking! Claudia shared with us her personal experience and tips which were really helpful especially for newbies like us.

Coloured papers. paper doilies, pre-cut shapes and envelopes are the main resources needed for scrapbooking. 

We began by making the cover page for our scrapbook. Gladys was assigned to be the Gluing Agent since she was so fascinated by the Glue Tape. 

Then she became the Cutting Inspector where she ensures each photo has been cut perfectly. Before we began sticking deco on our scrapbook, one helpful tip would be to arrange them first before sticking it down permanently.

There are no hard and fast rules to scrapbooking. All you need is to let your imagination flows.

After 2 hours of snipping and sticking, this is our final product! 

Gladys and I had a great bonding session. We love our scrapbook and I am so inspired to start scrapbooking!

Many Thanks to Canon Singapore and Claudia for the invitation. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Sweet desserts with Sweet Heart (甜甜屋) @ Toa Payoh

After we explored the Dragon playground, a bowl of cooling dessert is what we needed to cool off from the heat. Situated within the food centre at Toa Payoh Lorong 5, Sweet Heart Dessert offers a range of hot and cold desserts for selection.

What I like about their version of Ice Kachang at Sweet Heart is the scoop of ice-cream on top of the shaved ice. Generous drizzle of syrup over the ice mountain powered up its sweetness level. Perfect for those who have a sweet tooth.

Stone Ice Kachang ($2.50)

Gladys saving her ice-cream to the very last. 

One of my favourite dessert which is not always available at all dessert stalls is Longan with Red Tea Jelly. This dessert was first introduced to me by Hubby many years ago and I could not explain why I fell in love with this fusion dessert above the traditional ones like Ice Kachang and Chendol.

It could be the milky sweetness from the condensed milk blending in perfectly with the longans and red tea jelly making this dessert interesting and refreshing.

Longan Red Tea Ice ($1.60)

Sweet Heart's desserts tasted sweeter as compared to the ones we normally have. The sugar content was a little over for us but pricing was reasonable ranging from $1.20 to $4.50. We will be back again to give their other novelty desserts a try.

Sweet Heart Dessert (甜甜屋)
Blk 75, #01-06, Toa Payoh Lorong 5, S310075