Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Change Amidst the Rough Time

Change is a way of life (Pic source: Google.com)

"When I  did no go to work, I had a walk from my home to the TV Station in the morning. The wind was big, so nice and comfortable."

One of the elder workers from my previous job kept uttering the same sentences over and over again after she came back from her medical leave. I guessed, that was the syndrome that happened to human once we got old.

As I walked out from my new working place last night, the place was really windy that required me to put on my wind breaker.

It happened that my new working place was located just around that local TV Station area (what a coincidence!). It was very far from my house (it took me 1 hour and 15 minutes to reach there one way).

"Since you walked there, did you see any (local) movie stars?" 

That was another question raised by another auntie to that elder worker. And she said, unfortunately no. 

However, in the morning on my first day to work, as I passed by the campus (I did not even know there was such campus available for acting!), I saw one famous local actor walking on my opposite direction. With his white hair, he greeted the Chinese New Year wishes to the man who walked in front of me. He even removed his mask a while to ensure the person knew who he was. 

Some of Mark Lee movies (Pic source: Google.com)

I knew him, but forgot his name. Therefore I was keeping quiet as I walked and did not do anything (like waving hands or asking to take photo etc.) Then I quickly searched for his name in Google and found out. He was Mark Lee (known as Lee Kwok Huang), a Singaporean comedian, actor, television host and film director. He had produced and starred many local movies in Singapore and I has watched many of them too. 

Wow!!! What a day! The Aunty walked for so many days and did not see any stars even once, but I met one on my first working day! Hahaha... Maybe it was a good sign for a new beginning *grin *grin

So yes, I had started yet another chapter of working life since yesterday. The kueh lapis job had just over last Friday and was ended with dinner. I felt getting better at doing it by now (maybe the increasing number of years and experiences made my confidence level grew higher).

As I mentioned before, I wanted to share with you about my new working place. First, the location was in One-North area. It was a subzone and business park, developed by JTC Corporation for the R&D and high technology cluster, comprising biomedical sciences, infocomm technology (ICT) and media industries (Source: Wikipedia).

Info on Mediapolis (Pic source: Wikipedia)

And the exact location of my working place was at building called Alice@Mediapolis

"Right in the heart of Mediapolis, ALICE@MEDIAPOLIS is a business park created for startups and as a base for established organisations. It offers startup spaces, shared media facilities, flexible work-live-play-learn spaces, a childcare centre, and retail outlets. 

The Deliveroo Food Market is also housed in the building, featuring 10 kitchens and a 40-seater dining space, all based on a fully automated ordering system."

(Source: Wikipedia)

Deliveroo Food Market at Alice@Mediapolis

This was how the 40-seater dining place looked like. And the 10 kitchens mentioned was located just behind the area. 

"Deliveroo (legally incorporated as Roofoods Ltd.) is an online food delivery company founded by William Shu in 2013 in London, England.

It operates in over two hundred locations across the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France, Belgium, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.

Its subsidiary operation, Deliveroo Editions, focuses on growing a network of ghost kitchens—kitchens located off-site from restaurants for the preparation of delivery-only meals."

(Source: Wikipedia)

So, I worked in one of those 10 ghost kitchens located behind. 

List of kitchens and brands participating at Deliveroo Food Market

As mentioned above, the ghost kitchen was there to prepare food for delivery only meals. And ordering system was all fully automated, meaning that it was ordered through online (Deliveroo website or apps). No service staff taking order at the counter and to serve the food for you. It would be delivered by the Deliveroo food delivery rider to your home or office, or you can pick up at Deliveroo Food Market like the place above. 

Where you pick up your meals :)

When Covid-19 struck in Singapore since March last year, many F&B establishments were suffering as less people dined in. They were struggling with the restaurant's high rent cost, high labour cost, and so on. 

Food delivery had become trends as it encouraged less interaction between humans (as ordering, payment etc. were fully automated). People would not mind to pay more to get the taste of food that they wanted without having to move their butts and queue up. 

The GM of the restaurant that I worked saw this as a very good opportunity and time to strike this type of business. What they needed was to rent a small kitchen and hired few kitchen staffs (3 full-time staffs and 3 to 4 part-time staffs) to operate in their daily basis. 

They showed their food menu on the Deliveroo apps and to widen the market, he was creating the business Instagram accounts to introduce, show, and market what they sold. 

With premium ingredients used, well cooking skills and creativity, it could produce a delicious, healthy, and eye-catching food and many people who were health-conscious and loved high quality food, would not mind paying a high price to get the products. 

I was sometimes amazed with it because even in difficult times like this, people were still buying and spending their money on these types of food unhesitatingly.

Well, Covid or not Covid, people would still have to eat. You just had to change the way you run your business to maximise your profit. I loved this idea though. 

Delivery wise, you did not have to headache because Deliveroo would manage. You just had to focus on your food and beverage operations. 

All the prepared food was just put on the kitchen window and the staffs from Deliveroo would transfer it to the collection point, ready to be picked up by the rider or customer. 

The food had to be prepared in short time (as short as 7 minutes) so that it could preserve the heat, quality, and freshness by the time it reached the recipient's hands. So we had to work fast and good teamwork was necessary. 

Well, that was only the beginning. I hope it would go well and smoothly. I did not say it was easy but I would do my best to learn and be a good team player. Wish me all the best!!! :D

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Life update - Jan 2021

Hello January

Time indeed flies. January is going to be over soon, in few days time. Many things have happened, be it in my own personal life, and also in everyone else's life. 

First of all, Chinese New Year is coming (on 12th February 2021). It is in two and half weeks more. Many people are preparing it diligently now - from cutting their hair (to ward off the bad luck), buying new clothes, shopping food for CNY Eve's family gathering, changing new notes for the red packets, buying CNY goodies and decoration, and so on. 

However, 4 days ago, the authorities came out with new rules on visiting and tossing Yusheng (related to the upcoming CNY celebration). More details can be found here. It is summarized in the picture below:

Covid-19 Safeguards (Pic source: CNA)

With it, the CNY is expected to be quiet this year, very different from years before. Haiz.... I know. But when Covid-19 is still rampant everywhere, I think precautions are better than sorry and we just have to bear with it.

Anyway, many people are happy with the new rules though. Because they will get excuse for no-visiting this year. No need to prepare CNY goodies or delicacies, no need to distribute hong bao or red packet (although e-hongbao is recommended these days), no need to answer unnecessary (or sometimes stupid) questions - e.g. to those single - when have boyfriend or girlfriend; to couple - when to get married; to married couple - when to have kid; to married couple with kid - when to have a second one; and so on. No visiting means, no need to wear new clothes, shoes, bag, too.. Imagine how much money will be saved this year!!! Lol!!!

Second, I have quit from my part-time job. My last day of work was 17th January. It lasted for five months. It was short, but I experienced the busiest and quietest moments altogether. Have found friendship in it as well. Thank you for the opportunity and experience given to you know who you are! I am glad I was there in the team!! :)

From 11th itself, I started the other part-time job - baking kueh lapis . It is my fourth year doing this with the company. Yesterday, the kueh lapis from the company where I work was featured by 8 days (a weekly Singaporean magazine published by Mediacorp). 

Lina Confectionery Backstory Coverage (Pic source: 8 days.com)

They bought 17 kueh lapis from all different shops in Singapore - undercover - meaning: no ads, affiliations or insidious under-the-table hand-shaking involved. They placed it all side by side and compared the taste. Amazingly, they ranked it fourth best!!! With the coverage, personally, I am very happy with the news. 

And the comment! (Pic source: 8 days.com)

If only the Lady Boss (Tante Lina) - the founder - were still alive, she must be very proud and happy too!!! The kueh lapis recipe was created by her and it was her sweat and hard work for the product to be recognized by many people. She must be smiling from heaven now.

Third, once the kueh lapis job is over (first week of February), I have accepted another part time job. It is still F&B related job, still related to my passion, but handling different food. I will post it next time once I have started and familiar with it. There is something interesting about it, and that was why I chose to try :)

Yeah, it is funny right? When everyone was busy with their works, I was jobless and did nothing (other than travelling). And when Covid came, many people lose their jobs and do nothing, I was the other way around, busied myself with the part-time job I took. Hahaha...

I feel blessed though. Because even when the time was tough, we are all blessed with good health, safe environment, have job to do, and so on.

So, that's it for now. January is a busy month for me. Work, work, and work. Hope to have more rest. Til then. Hope everyone is in good health! Take care! :)

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Books read for the second half of the year 2020

Quote by Lloyd Alexander (Pic source: Google.com)

Hi hi, how have you been readers? Have you managed to read much for the second half of the year 2020?

I read lesser than the first half as since August, I had started working. With more hours spent at work plus the Korean drama I had binged to run myself away from reality,  the lesser time I had spent on reading.

Nevertheless, it was not too bad. 

Below please find the lists of books I had read for the second half of the year 2020:

July 2020

July 2020:

1. Before the Coffee Gets Cold - Toshikazu Kawaguchi
2. My True Love Gave To Me (Twelve Winter Romance)
3. The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down - Haemin Sunim

August 2020

August 2020:

1. 1984 - George Owell
2. Sex and Vanity - Kevin Kwan
3. Last Tang Standing - Lauren Ho

September 2020

September 2020:

1. The Two Lives of Lydia Bird - Josie Silver
2. Love In No Man's Land - Duo Ji Zhuo Ga

October 2020

October 2020:

1. Hidden Bhutan - Martin Urlz
2. The Hating Game - Sally Thorne

November 2020

November 2020:

1. The Perfect World of Miwako Sumida - Clarissa Goenawan
2. The Other Mrs - Mary Kubica 
3. The Good Girl - Mary Kubica 

December 2020

December 2020:

1. The Glass Hotel - Emily St. John Mandel
2. Sleeping on Jupiter - Anuradha Roy
3. What Lies Between Us - John Marrs
4. Never Look Back - Mary Burton

Quote by Margaret Atwood (Pic source: Google.com)

Btw. how was 2020 treating you? It was not a easy year to pass through right? And yet, it flew so fast. It was a transformation year which affected so many people around us. It was tough but we all went through it. 

Year 2021 did not promise a better life either. Perhaps, it could get worse as apart from the pandemic (more countries around the world had to be locked down), many calamities had happened too at some parts of the world (the missing plane and earthquakes in Indonesia).

The vaccines has come but the bad news is, not everyone is able to get it (especially those who have immune-related problems, allergy problems, and so on). Haiz... Even then, it was not proven to protect human from the virus 100% yet, especially when the new variant had also appeared lately in Europe. 

Nevertheless, I am thankful for what have happened into my life so far, and will continue to be thankful more what we have so far. My prayers and wishes that we all can survive and go through it all with positive mind, one step at a time. I believe everything happens for good reasons and whatever reasons, it always teaches us something and makes ourselves stronger each and every day. 

In the end, I hope book writers can publish more books at this point of time so that we can continue reading despite the pandemic. Fighting!!!

Saturday, January 02, 2021

Happy New Year 2021

Happy New Year 2021

The alarm played the Merry Christmas melody at 7.30 am (my daily wake-up time), waking me up from my sleep. I felt coolness from the untouched bed sheet surface surrounding me. Hhhhmmm.... I stretched my legs and arms as far as possible and slowly released my breath. 

The room was still dark as I drew my curtain close the night before. I headed to the toilet inside my room to release the bladder inside me that was full of water. Raining sound was heard from the window. Hmmm... no wonder it felt so cold... What a perfect morning to start with, especially when I did not have to go to work. Supposedly, it was a perfect day to continue sleeping. However, many things I wanted to do and I did not want to miss.

First thing first, breakfast. Hubby had to go to work, even on weekends. I took out 6 slices of bread from its packet, still freshly new. I spread the butter on each bread evenly. I put a slice of gammon ham and cheese on it, making 3 sets. I heated the oven before putting them inside for 10 minutes. While waiting, I washed the fresh salad, cut a piece of kiwi, put them inside the bowl, and added blueberry on top. At the separate small bowl, I poured the sesame dressing, a perfect companion for the salad bowl.

The water was boiling. Two empty cups with coffee powder were prepared, ready to be poured. Hmmm... the coffee smell was so great in such cooling morning!!! Tinggg!!! The oven timer was stopped as well and the toasts were all ready. I made 3 sets - one for hubby, one for myself, and another one for my sister-in-law (her packed breakfast to be consumed at her working place). Sometimes, when I was free like this, I prepared some breakfast for her as well, which brought some envy to her colleagues hehehe....

Simple breakfast and yet comes from the heart :)

Hubby and I sat down facing towards each other, slowly enjoying our breakfast. The music from the radio was played at the background, connected from my old mobile phone to the alarm clock cum speaker Bluetooth that we purchased from Taobao. I loved listening to the radio. Apart from listening to the music and DJ's speaking, I could also hear some latest news (well, I seldom watch news on TV. So, short news from radio or newspaper would be my only intake for news - not the fans of too much news though).

The door towards balcony was opened widely. From my seat, I could see the rain pouring down quite heavily. The sky was grayish and gloomy. The temperature was as low as 23 degree, felt like winter (very rarely we had such temperature in this tropical country of Singapore). That was why I loved Singapore when it came to January :)

As usual, hubby and I would have chit chat, about life, about our lives especially, on what was going on surrounding us, including what had happened to our growing up son. I loved such moments, where it was only us here, having our own time together, even it was only a short while. I did not like having my morning getting distracted by other sound (be it TV sound, people's visiting, and so on). 

And since today was Saturday, no one came to our house in the morning. In short while, hubby and sister-in-law went for work. Baobei was still sleeping, and mother-in-law had gone out since dawn (to her usual market and would not return until afternoon). So I have the whole morning by myself now. 

Yummmmm..... I devoured such moments. I decided to take out my dear love (Microsoft Surface Pro) and brought it together with my new diary (2021) plus journal, to the dining table. I poured the hot water over my Doraemon mug and filled it with the Japanese green tea's bag. The rain was still pouring and cooling air entered in slow pace throughout the door. It was beautiful!!! Happiness could be gained as simple as that, no matter where you were. 

Life is good :)

Here I am now, translating my feelings into words, typing it onto this blog post. As the year 2021 has began, I have so many things on my head to say, so many feelings to express. Yesterday I was working almost a whole day, therefore I had no time to do this (public holiday meant double pay, that was why I chose to work hahaha.... :P).

I  wanted to retrospect over what had passed throughout the year 2020 and think over of what to do in this year 2021. 

First of all, the retrospection. The year 2020 passed so swiftly. I still felt as if I was still in February or March, where the spread of Corona virus in Singapore had just begun. It developed so fast that the country had to go through the Circuit Breaker period. At that time, we thought that it was going to be over in few months' time. Who ever thought that even until now, the situation had not yet gotten better. It even got worst as the Covid-19 new variant was developed in UK recently. 

Today, the Covid-19 cases are still rampant anywhere in the world, including the small country like Bhutan. Healthcare staffs there (many of them I knew) were busy fighting the disease and had to wear protective gears to protect themselves from getting infected. It reminded me of my dear friend, Tashi Chenzom, who had left this world for over 9 months (she left on 28 March 2020). Sometimes I thought that it was good that she left early so she did not have to face this kind of situation. To this day, I still miss her and wonder where she is now (or where she has been born into).

With Covid-19, I have not had a chance to meet up with my parents and siblings who stay overseas. Lucky I still have a brother who live here in Singapore. The rest of them, we meet everyday in our What's App group chat, updating our lives each and everyday online. We missed our family gathering, our family holidays, and so on. 

When my mom was sick (due to high blood pressure), we were all helpless, did not know what to do to help her. She was not dare to visit clinic and hospital as there would be many Covid-19 patients visiting the places. She was lying on bed for few days, eating whatever medicine that they thought would help her. It did not work though, because it was not the right medicine to encounter it. Luckily my eldest sister managed to video call with her usual doctor and to get prescription from her. With the right medicine, she finally could feel better and the blood pressure had gone down. 

Year 2020 was also the year without travelling. Since no travel, I did not have much things to do too. It caused me to engage in many different activities. It was the year where I watched Korean drama the most, watched various movies online, tried many different recipes, read books, and so on. Until one day I decided to do a part-time job to kill time and find my passion back. It has been 4.5 months now and it has been getting better. But many staffs (both full time and part time) were leaving to pursue different or better job prospects. Changes were never avoidable in any type of situations or places. And we could only accept and adapt. I would no more put an emphasis on feeling sadness or loss anymore. Just acceptance, let go, and adapt into new situation.

When the time passes so fast, unknowingly, we are getting old each day. My son had turned to 18 last month and had girlfriend too. He had even openly announced his relationship by posting their photos in his Instagram story yesterday. We, the parents, could no longer treat him like a baby anymore. He had often missed our dinner session at home as he went out for dinner and date with his girlfriend during this school-holiday term. When love was still in the air, the rest was transparent like ghost. Hahaha...

I am grateful that throughout year 2020, I was blessed with few group or circle of friends whom I had chance to meet often with. We met like once in a month or more (as and when both party was free). Like we all know, as we grow up, it is not numbers of friends that matter, but just few close ones that really matter to us that worth to keep. That too includes those who are far apart. Due to this pandemic, there was no chance for us to meet ( I had to forgo my UK and France trip that I planned this May), and no way in meeting others who were living all over the world. But I just want you to know, despite we live apart, your presence was always living in my hearts (you know who you are - all my dear friends everywhere around the world :) ).

Quotes 2021 (Pic source: Google.com)

Now year 2021 is here. When I chatted with my friends, sometimes we mentioned of our plans and goals, of what is next. Not only plan for this year 2021, but for many years ahead. One favorite topic was where will you plan to live on your retirement days? 

Although the retirement age in Singapore is planned to be 68 in year 2022, and still many decades lie between now and then, many of my friends have already thought and planned about it from now on. Majority of those who live in Singapore (even my Taiwanese friend) wanted to spend their old days in Thailand. Low living cost is one of the major reasons (cost of renting or buying apartment there, cost of owning vehicle, daily living cost - like food, clothing, etc.). The comfort and safety level as almost 95% of its population is Buddhist. The weather can be cooling at some season in northern area of Thailand. My friend had even learned the language so that she could communicate well with local.

Many of my Bhutan friends who are working here have planned of buying plot of land or upgrading what they already had back home. With it, they plan to build an apartment to rent, or making holiday guest house for tourists. Therefore, they save their earnings here and live their lives modestly for now.

When we were talking about all these plans, I was asking myself in my heart. What was mine? And to be honest, I have no plan. My mind is blank. Nothing. 

I live my life - day by day. Whatever comes, let it comes. As life is full of uncertainties, there is no point for me to plan too far ahead. First, due to health condition. My risk of uncertainties is far much higher than the rest. It might come anytime, anywhere. And I have no idea how long more I could live (really no idea what may come).

Second, I am happy and grateful with present moment. I have roof to stay, food to eat, clothes to wear. I live in a good country, with good weather, good political stability, safe country. I have numbers of good friends, loving families, loving parents, siblings, good relations with relatives and so on. I have job and good colleagues and managers. I can do things I love doing, have lots of freedom, get mostly what I want. And it is all enough. 

That is why I never think of moving somewhere else. Because for me, as long as I am healthy and happy, this place is good enough to live. It is a good hub place to travel everywhere too. So not necessary staying elsewhere and start all over again. If I like a place, I can just book hostel and travel for 2 weeks to a month and enjoy the place and its life temporarily. No need to headache on so many things and create more troubles. such as unnecessary paperwork, and so on.

With sickness on hand, I was not able to get insurance policy to protect me on bad time. And yes, the hospital fee is really expensive in Singapore. But as Singapore citizen, we are getting the subsidy from the government. And up to this day, our Singapore government is taking care the elder generation  and low-income families quite well. I mean, government in many countries does not giving so much privileges or benefits to their citizens. Therefore, I am grateful enough for everything.

Every one of us thinks differently about life, so do I. I do not need to stay in private apartment or condominium, or upgrade to five-room flat. I do not need to have car because I can travel comfortably with MRT, public bus, and Grab car. I do not need to eat at high class restaurant or purchase exorbitant prices food just to be happy. Any food that fits the purpose and keep my stomach warm and full are more than enough. I can let go my desire and settle for less as long I can live. Cheap biscuits and cheap tea sachet? No problem at all. I can still be very happy with it as long as it serves the purpose. Home baked muffin and not those come from famous bakery, that costs so much? Even better, because it is filled with love. Whatever comes with love, it does not have to be so good or expensive. It still fits the purpose. And it makes me happy :)

I do not need branded clothes and bags. Just normal shirts and any bags that fits the purpose are enough. There is no need for me to show off. As long it serves the purpose and makes me happy, that is enough. And so on.

I do not say that planning for future is bad. It is good. It is just, it does not applicable for me. My daily goal in life is to be healthy and happy. That is.

The good healthy mindset and positive outlooks are much needed to face any challenges that comes in life. Instead, I spend my time to be aware, to think and to do better in any situation. I have learnt many things from the past and not wanting to repeat the same mistakes again. I know I am still lacking in many part, especially preparing myself for future's life (after death). In fact, no preparation at all. Just focus on present moment and do what I shall do. That is all.

Well, what about you readers? 

Quote by Rick Warren

I bumped into a quote saying, "Lives do not change just because it is the New Year. Lives change when Mindsets change." - Rageshwari. 

Think about what kind of life you want to live and focus your mind towards it. Accept the changes. Learn to let go. And adapt with it. 

With this post and my thought sharing, I wish all of you a good health and lots of happiness this year to come. Be safe and take care everyone. Love you all :)

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Baking journal :)

Baking with heart (Pic source: Google.com)

I forgot when was the last time I baked at home. It seemed like ages my toy had been left abandoned at the corner of my kitchen table, so did the pastry equipments. Many ingredients had also expired and could not be used. 

If you know me well enough, you should know that I am the type of person who would do things seasonally, depending on mood. After some time, it stops. Hahahaha.. :D

My hubby had complained enough of mentioning all things I bought and used only in the beginning, and then, left behind :P

On 12.12 sale, I happened looking at the muffin or Cupcake mold tray sold online together with the paper. It had been long time that I wondered if I could make it my own. 

Cappuccino and orange muffin from 7-eleven in Melbourne

Talking about muffin, I loved eating muffin that I bought from 7-eleven store in Melbourne. It was big, delicious, and cheap (AUD$2 per piece when you bought with their $1 cappuccino!!!). My favourite was orange! Such a bargain right???

Without thinking much, I ordered it right away and a week later, it came right into my house door :)

Dadadaraaaaa.......  my new toy :D

On the same day, I browsed Youtube searching for the muffin recipe. The first that appeared was Chocolate Chip Muffin Easy Recipe

Well, who did not love an easy way??? I clicked it right away. Then I clicked few more as comparison (to find the easiest hahahaha.....)

I bought the ingredients at supermarket and started making it after reaching home.

Well, for the first try, the result seemed not bad. The taste was there (as I used good ingredients for the butter, chocolate chips, flour, etc.) However, the shape was a bit out and colour was so much dark. 

My first chocolate chip muffin with Dalgona coffee :)

Then I realised where the mistake came from (on colour side). I did not remove the tray from inside the oven. It made the position of my mold tray slightly higher and easily burnt from the top heating part from inside the oven. 

Anyway, I tasted it happily for the afternoon break with hubby-whipped Dalgona coffee. 

Few days later, I tried making the orange muffin. Again, I browsed Youtube and found the easy recipe there. 

Just nice there were 2 big orange inside the chiller, perfect ingredients for the day!!! It was easier too. I multiplied the ingredients into 2 and made 11 muffins from it. 

First time came out from oven, the shape was still not right. 

My first time odd-shape orange muffin :D

Hmmmmm.... could not be!!! I followed the same ingredients and steps as per shown in Youtube, and yet, the results were unlike shown there. So something must be wrong somewhere!!!

Well, there is always lesson from everything that we do in life. And like everything else, practise makes perfect. I found out that the setting of the oven was not right. The heat was not set from up and down, but going sideway. That was why the shape became like that!!!

I tried my second tray with the up-down setting, and voila!!! 

After setting it right!!! Yassss!!!!

Were they beautiful like me??? Hahahaha.... No more uneven colour and it came out round shape :) Taste was good too!!! The orange flavour was there. Yummy!!!

And today I made the chocolate chip muffin again. The result was much better from the first one. The taste was equally nice. 

Christmas home baked cake gifts :)

I packed it into the ice-cream container and decorated the cover on my own hahahaha.... (saving the money from buying the Christmas card) and gave it as a Christmas gift :) I hope the receivers will like it :)

And after long day of shopping ingredients and baking, I had finally my me-time to enjoy what I made :)

Me-time with home-baked chocolate chip muffin :)

Hmmmm.... it was nice, perfect having it in going-to-rain evening :)

In my opinion, it was not difficult in making it. No mixer was required as the nature of the cake itself did not required over-stirring process. Ingredients required were also easy to get. Recipes were easily followed and obtained from Youtube. 

I am not into the icing thing on top of the muffin or cupcakes, and prefer to keep things simple with its own flavour inside. It can be a perfect gift to people as well :)

So, if you wonder if you too can try, I am sure you can. You just need an oven to bake it. Happy trying if you decide to try!!! And I will make more next time when I have time and let others tasting it too :) Be patient ok? :)

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Another stage of parenthood

Happy 18th Birthday (Pic source: Google.com)

"While many of my friends recently entering into their first stage of parenthood (currently busy with their newborn babies), I am myself entering into another phase of motherhood. 

My dear Baobei will turn 18 soon, and these days he has shown tell tale signs of having attraction to a girl, which commonly found in teenagers of his age. 

I might be busy with work these days, but there was no escape for him to keep hiding what was going on in his life. 

Perhaps it was an instinct of a woman and a mother (especially strong in my self) that made me thinking something was off for the past few weeks. 

Two days ago our doubts had come to reality as I saw it with my own eyes (as she too works at the same place), entered  after him into the staff room, with her glowing face and wide smile shining so bright (usually shown by those who was falling in love - the extremely happy face that could not be hidden).

There was a 'winning' and proud sign shown as she looked into me, as if she wanted to tell me that she managed to conquer his heart over mine.

My heart felt a pinch when I saw that both of them were wearing couple sandal. My son with his blue Adidas and white stripes that he bought and wore for quite some time, and she with her white Adidas and blue stripes, still looking new. 

I was just keeping quiet but my heart was shattered as if I have lost in the battle to keep the heart of my loved one.

I immediately sent messages to my hubby to share my findings and he told me that he would talk with him that night, and give him some advise as this sounds to be his first time to be in the boyfriend and girlfriend relationship.

After having conversation boy-to-man that night, he finally confessed his feeling. He even mentioned a little more details about the girl that he likes. 

It is not that I do not agree with it or want to stop him from it. But we as parents, just want to give some guidance and advices on what to expect from it. As we all know, in beginning stage, it is usually all about beautiful, flowery, and loving stuffs and world. Hahaha.... (talking from own experience :P)

We had talked with him days before that, but who could stop the heart from falling right??? At least he told us that both of them knew and understood that study is still the priority for both of them. So I hope they both can keep their words and still happily enjoying the relationship moments that they deserve having at this stage of life. 

I felt lost at first, because it had never happened before. In my eyes, he is always my baby, who came out from inside my stomach. I still remember vividly how he cried just after coming out and was brought to my side. My eyes were swelling with tears of happiness as I saw him born healthy and normal. And soon, I have to share him with another girl - his time, love and so on. 

This made me recall the past of how unhappy (or maybe jealous) my father was,  when I was dating with my boyfriend (now ex-boyfriend), and spent most of my day and time with him. 

The relationship did not end well. I went through heartbreak moments and took me days to overcome (with so many tears to shed almost every night).

Perhaps at that time, my father was relieved, because after that, that was when I was supposed to get to know with my current hubby here in Singapore. 

Anyway, I never hope Baobei to be in the same situation as I had before, but if anything happens, I hope he would know how to face, accept, overcome, stand tall again, and move on with his life."

The above post was written mid of November. I decided not to post it immediately.

My Baobei just celebrated his 18th Birthday yesterday. In Singapore 18 years means lots of thing.

It is the legal age here to vote, sue or to be sued, open bank account in own name, get a tattoo, buy cigarette or tobacco, buy and drink alcohol in the bar, and so on. 

For me, it is the age when we should allow him to be in relationship. However, we can only wish him to use all the allowance responsibly, and not forgetting what he told us earlier (to prioritise study).

It took me only a while to accept this fact and realisation. I feel much better now.

Like a kite (IG: rimareyka.writes)

"Raising a child is indeed, not an easy journey. Like flying a kite, you must know when to pull and when to let go." - Rimareyka.writes 

Happiest Birthday to dear Baobei. I may not be your best mom, but I will always be your only mom in this lifetime.

For your 18th, I wish you be healthy and happy, live your life well, balance your time well between family, friends, and her, know what you want, reach your dreams, know your limit on how far you can go. Be kind and good to all sentient beings too! May Buddha bless you all the time. 

Love you always and forever.

Your loving parents. 

Monday, November 16, 2020

Way back to follow my passion (Part 4)

Rich at heart (IG: rimareyka.writes)

In 2 days time, it will mark my third month working here. Wow, time flies right? It just goes by in a blink of eye. 

I do not even have much time to update my blog, try whipping new recipe, or engage myself in more reading (at most I can only read a maximum of 2 books a month - that too is only done during my trip to and from work, on my bus ride).

Day off is spent mostly to rest at home, shop grocery at supermarket, window shopping at department store, or have some exercise like morning walk (depending on the weather), and so on.

I try my best to make time to gather with friends and family members too, plus once-a-month family of three eat-out lunch or dinner (I think we need to have this treat as all of us are busy with work and school, so family bonding is much required where we can chit chat and share our love and thoughts towards each other).

With this post, I think I have reached the stage where I have familiarised my work much better compared with my last post. I have conquered the stage where fear dominated most of my feeling. I am into the stage where the confidence level is getting much better despite the speed and skills may not reach the mastery level yet (not sure if the day will come also hahahaha... :P)

But at least, at some area, I dare my own self to give it a go (no more excuses saying that I have not learned or done it before). Because after all, each of us have to do it soon or later. 

I have worked where the staff figures are at the lowest (as many students have gone back to school). One person is forced to do one-man show, juggling multi-task works, finishing one order to another, especially at peak times (lunch and dinner). Manager needs to go around to check if any back up help is required but he or she can not be there all the time. 

Sometimes when the staff figures are more than enough, the Manager also puts you in one-man show. In this scenario, I just tell myself that they just want to train me so that I can work faster and better. Lol.

Whatever it is, Positive energy is very much required. That too not yet including additional request (sometimes ridiculous one) from the guests (when your area is directly serving them). To remind myself to be positive is not enough. I also have to remind myself to be patient. Sometimes, I feel grateful that all of us have to wear mask due to this pandemic. It is indeed very useful to hide our annoyed face behind :D

Never too old to make friends (IG: rimareyka.writes)

With time, the relationship with colleagues are getting better too, especially after they find out that I am my son's mother. Some have even changed their attitudes after knowing that :D

Team work is very much required in this fast paced job. Some colleagues are very friendly, polite and helpful, while some think highly of themselves, rude, and try to act blur. When facing them (to appease myself), I just tell myself that they may not learn well about karma yet in their lives. No matter how strong or skilful you are, one day you will still need help from other people. So, I just treat them the same, not to remember how they treat me, with the hope that they will change their attitude someday. This will do good to them :)

Well, will give you more updates again next time. Hope everyone of you is in good health (both body and mind), and keep your spirit up in positive ways. Jia you!!! :)

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Way back to follow my passion (Part 3)

The same result (IG: rimareyka.writes)

It had been more than 16 years since the last time I worked in Food and Beverage company on the operational side (excluding the once-a-year part-time kueh lapis though).

In the beginning, I was not sure if I still had the energy (standing up all the time; long and shift working hours), speed (that was very much needed in a fast-moving operation), and the ability to work with the young and energetic people and environment.

I have the passion and love though, and that what keeps me motivated to get myself ready for each shift to start.

It was just I did not know that all the staffs here (both full and part time) were required to have many different skills as we were expected to work in many different areas each day, and the tasks given were changed all the time in every few hours depending on the demand in the operation side.

It was really not easy to have the skill set for doing each job. But surprisingly, my son did not feel having any difficulties in doing any tasks given. I never heard him complaining except that it was tiring. 

Unlike me.

Overcome fear (IG: rimareyka.writes)

Every time I was given a new task, I was filled myself first with "FEAR". Fear of doing wrong, fear of not doing good enough, fear of being too clumsy, fear of getting complained, fear of not doing fast enough, fear of missing the items or ingredients, fear of the items not looking presentable, and so on.

I had to tell myself over and over not to be afraid. The fear naturally came to me as I had not worked for so long, plus this company served the premium selling items using only premium ingredients, and sold it at a very high price (the Management too, had a high expectation from each of their staffs to do their jobs well and fast).

With fear that appeared first with me on every first task I learned, there were always things I did wrong, too slow, not satisfactory, and so on as I was not used of doing it before. 

Of course they would not expect someone who just worked in that area for few times to compare their abilities with those who had worked there for some time. Yes, they were lenient and understanding. 

But sometimes, even after doing it for several times, there were always comments given by others - e.g. "you cannot do it like this," "cannot put it like that," "this is too small," "it was not done right, do it again," and so on.

Some staffs were good. After telling me where my mistakes were, they taught me on how to make it right. This led me to do things better. It was okay for me for them to tell me my mistake because it meant that they cared. And I had to remember it so that I would not make the same mistake in the future.

Sometimes, it brought other staff with frustration when having me as their partner (I even made them crying for help from the Manager) :D

After all, we are just a human being (IG: rimareyka.writes)

Personally, I too had high expectation from my own self. For example, I believed that "LOVE" was the most important ingredients in the dishes  that I usually prepared. Therefore at work, I wanted to treat every food that I handled, with love, e.g. cutting only the best parts of the leaf (those broken one, yellowish, discolouration, would not be used), handling each part of the ingredients gently (so that it would not break, look ugly, not presentable with finger pressing mark), using both hands to take the food instead of one, etc. And with those things in mind, it made me working slower (plus not long enough practise as I believe in practise makes perfect - or at least, better).

Many times, I put myself on the customer's shoes. "If I were the customer, by queuing for so long to get here and paying so much for the food ordered, I would have such expectation for the good and services received from the company." Therefore, I tried doing my best to deliver the best to them.

And with Internet and social media, people could write review about good things and disappointments easily these days that would affect the company's reputation. Instagram users would also post many of the company's food and beverage items on their accounts. Therefore, food presentation was definitely important.

Both visual (presentation) and non-visual (services rendered by staffs during their dining experience) were equally important and highly demanded by our customers.

Looking at how each full-timer and old part- timer staff worked, it made me wonder if would there be a day when I could reach their standard (of speed, quality, accuracy, and so on).

Be stone sometimes (IG: rimareyka.writes)

As for now, I could only say that my day-to-day working experience was like a rollercoaster ride - full of ups and downs. Sometimes good, sometimes not good.

Not all was bad though. Sometimes I worked well too and was even praised when doing good job. 

Some nights I could not sleep thinking of what had happened before or would happen at working place and all those forced me to remind myself to always put myself back to the present moment (as what happened, had already happened, I could not go back to the past to undo those mistakes. And what would happen, hadn't happened yet, so why should I worry about it??)

I could only tell myself to do the best each day. If my ability was not up to it, let them decide on it. We were given probation time before they confirmed us to be their staffs. So by then, just keep doing and practising, making it better. Whatever the results would be, que sera sera....

Friday, September 18, 2020

Way back to follow my passion (Part 2)

Quote by Steve Jobs (Pic source: Google.com)

I have an independent teenager son at home. Once he reached legal age to work (in Singapore - 16 years old), he immediately found a part time job on his own and started working during his school holiday to earn some extra income. He applied the job and went to interview all by himself (not even his friend accompanied him). 

He prefers working at restaurant (F&B related business) as some establishment provide meal to their employee and some gives huge discount for purchasing the meal there (as part of employee benefits).

With the money that he earns, he is able to purchase all things that he wants and to eat all his favorite meals with his friends, without asking us (the parents) any single cent. Even when we give him, he often rejects it as he says that he has enough money on his bank account. Thank you Baobei for being such an understanding and growing up son. We are very proud of you on this matter. 

He joined this current company last year during school holiday. He still works even when school has started (with a much lesser hours to clock in). When he just started, he often shared with us about new things that he had learnt.

I happened bumping into the company's website one day and read about the referral incentives (when new staff is able to work there, the current staff who introduce the new staff will be given incentives as the company has saved the effort to get new staff on their part - be it advertisement fee, agent fee, and so on). With that, I casually told my son to check with his superior if they were still hiring for part-time staff. 

I found out from the Manager later on, on how my son checked this with him (after I started the job). Initially, my son told him that his friend wanted to work. After some time (when I became more serious about it), my son told him that his Aunty wanted to work (hahaha..... perhaps he was testing if the company was going to employ elderly staff into the company because majority of the part-time staffs there were students). And later on, when I got impatient because no news received after so long, he then confessed to his Manager that actually it was his Mom who wanted to work. Hahaha....

It took him some time to digest this, I guessed, as which teenager would want to work at the same place with his mother or father? I mean, his colleagues' parents might be someone who work in office, bank, school, hospital etc., but not here. In addition, he might not be able to imagine what his colleagues said when they found out that his mother working together there. That was what I thought considering to put him on my shoes.

Nevertheless, he still got me the application form, let me fill it up, and submitted it to his Manager. After some time, the GM asked me to come for an interview. He might want to see for himself how suitable me for joining the workforce there (as I mentioned, most of the staffs there were youngsters in their teenagers, 20s, or 30s; not included the Managers though).

So, as per agreed timing, I went there for the interview. It went well. Soon they sent me for orientation and training for hygiene - refreshment course - as I attended the basic course many years ago.

And as for today, I managed to complete one month working there. Will share with you more about what I felt during my work there. To be continued :)

Wednesday, September 09, 2020

Way back to follow my passion (Part 1)

Singapore - In times of Covid-19

It has been 1.5 months since the last time I posted my blog post. Covid-19 is still around all over the world, including here in Singapore. Travelling abroad for leisure purposes is still not possible yet. Until when? Nobody knows.

Due to this pandemic many people have lost their jobs. Many shops and food stalls are seen closing down for good. Travel agents do not open for business for more than half a year now. Many hotels are quiet like ghost-infected buildings.  My heart is very sad when passing by those places.

Fortunately things still go well with my family members; all are in good health (thank Buddha), and at least everyone still holds their jobs safely.

3 Hobbies you need (Pic source: Google.com)

My days were filled with so much unproductive things, mostly at home. I had watched over 15 series of mostly Korean dramas (with an average of 16 episodes per each series) and 50 over movies for the period of five and a half months. Crazy, weren't I? 

Cooking and trying to whip up new dishes were other activities I loved doing for my family at home. Walking, cycling, and hiking once in a while were done to keep myself fit, active, and healthy.

Cycling in the evening and watching sunset (Punggol Waterway - Singapore)

The future of Covid-free life is still far unknown. At least, it is controlled well with less cases within the community. 

Being tired of spending time unproductively, I thought of doing something - that according to my passion, and at the same time, could earn some income. Anyway, I can not travel to anywhere until at least next year when vaccine has been found and given to most people all around the world.

To find the real job is kinda challenging at this point of time, although Singaporean and PR would be given priorities to the job vacancy. And for company that hire them, it would be given the subsidy of their employees' monthly salary by the Singapore government.

"For eligible employees under the age of 40, the subsidy will be 20% of the monthly salary of those employees for 6 months, capped at S$6,000 in aggregate. For eligible employees who are 40 and over, the subsidy will be 40% of the monthly salary of those employees for 6 months, capped at S$12,000 in aggregate."

(Source: https://www.singaporebudget.gov.sg/ - May 28, 2020)

Office job will be less tired physically, but can give lots of stress mentally. Higher pay or not will depend on the type of job because these days, many company try to cut their labor cost as much as they can by employing lesser staffs. Therefore, 1 person may have to do 2 or more people's job (bad times or less business quantity will be the usual reasons given).

Usually office workers will get their days off on weekends. However, after staying at home for some time, I realize that weekends are never good times to go out as too many people will also be going to the same places - to shop, exercise, dine, etc. I will rather stay at home and have a peaceful days off during weekdays.

Power of passion (Pic source: Google.com)

I wanted to find something that I like doing (my passion) at this period of time. I had been through few types of jobs before and I knew well what I liked doing and what I did not like. Of course, there were many pros and contras regarding the thing that I wanted to do.

Physical job would be more tiring but depending on the nature of the job. I preferred doing a low-rank job where I would use my brain only when I work, but not after working time is over - no need to headache to plan about tomorrow, next week, and so on.

Full time job would give me less freedom (Monday to Friday or Saturday job is quite dull, wasn't it?) There were more crowd too during office hours - when taking public transport and having lunch.

Part time job would give me more freedom (as I could choose which day I want to work, which day I want to rest), although the pay that I might get would be much lesser (price for freedom).

And most importantly, when you do something according to your passion, you will not feel that you do it as a job or is solely done painstakingly only to earn money. Of course at the end of the day, money is still the motivator or the drive for getting the job. It is just how our mind set it in separately. 

When working with money as the main motivator, no matter how horrible the job is, people will stay put at the job only because the money is rewarding or attractive enough (even when the job scopes are suck, colleagues are crap, and workload is crazy). 

However, life is too short to be filled with unhappy things in life. And I want to do something I love doing this time.

Therefore, one day, I finally decided to do the part time job, and it is where my son works.

The post to be continued :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...