Monday, October 27, 2008

My 23rd Birthday

How time flies... I'm 23 already!! Last thing I remembered, I was 18 and I think 23 y/o ppl are quite old already.. haha..

I celebrated my birthday with my gf a day day earlier cause the day after my birthday, I'll be having CAs and plenty of projects, reports and assignments due the following week. It's gonna be a hectic week.

So, the night before we celebrate, my gf was super stressed out cause she already found the places to eat but don't know how to get there! haha.. She's not very familiar with Singapore and normally relies on me with directions and she wanted to 'surprise' me.. hahah.. but in the end, she consulted me on timing wise and how to go to one location from another.. lol..

We started off with lunch at Swensen's at Marina Square. Initially, she wanted to bring me to the sandwich place where Elaynne was talking about in her blog but because we were there to purchase HSM3's movie tickets, it was quite redundant to walk all the way back to Raffles City and then back again to Marina Square. So... she treated me for lunch where I ordered Almond Lamb Chop and she had Macaroni and Cheese. We also had Apple Crumble for dessert! Yum!

Apple Crumble (by P3rSeUs)

After lunch, we watched High School Musical 3 where I bumped into Jacqueline's family. haha.. her lil' bro is soo cute.. ANyway, the show was alright.. Very delightable show suitable for families.. If you like the first two prequels, then I think you'll like this one as well.

SO.. after movie, we headed towards Tanjung Pagar where she took me to this place called the "Tea Chapter". It's a place where you get to enjoy chinese tea in real authentic Chinese Style!

Tea Chapter (by P3rSeUs)

Tea Chapter (by P3rSeUs)

It's where you sit down on wooden floors with low tables and you can even brew your own tea. The staff will first demonstrate to you proper way of tea-brewing and how to drink it. It's quite similar to wine tasting.. I enjoyed being in that place...

Tea Chapter (by P3rSeUs)

I always wanted to do such a thing; those Japanese Tea House kind.. Now I understand why people can just spend hours just to drink tea.. We played the board games that were offered there; battleship, snap.. haha.. There's also Chinese Chess, Weiqi - that'll be more Chinese style but don't know why didn't play that.

After spending 2 hours in there, we had to leave cause otherwise, we'll be late for dinner. Problem with dinner plans is that, she has no idea where the place is. The restaurant is called "Spizza" along Smith Street and the only clue she has is that, it's somewhere in Chinatown and near Chinatown Point.

So, we explored and walked in circles within Chinatown.. Smith Street was nowhere to be found. Just when we were giving up, she told me that the vicinity has lots of fine cuisine and at that spark of time, I recalled that I've been there before where my sister and her bf took me there for my birthday when I was 1st year. We had Mediterenean Cuisine at that time but I could not recall where that place was.

After venturing around again, aha! I saw a familiar place from a long time ago.. Eventually, we found that place after walking for about 2 hours in Chinatown... hahah
There it is - Spizza! For all her effort, I treated her for dinner where we shared a nice whole original Italian pizza. It was something out of the norm and worth trying out! It's crust is simply crispy and the filling are something different from what we get elsewhere.

Katerina (by P3rSeUs)

We headed back to NTU after that. Just when I thought it was over, she had another surprise for me! She gathered friends from my batch together to celebrate my birthday with me. She tried very hard not to let me know from her constant flow of SMSes. haha...

And her gift to me - a "Magic Box". It contains endless supply of food and snacks. It'll "magically" replenish itself when it's about to go empty. haha.

DSC00768 (by P3rSeUs)

DSC00769 (by P3rSeUs)

Dear, thanks a lot for planning such a wonderful celebration for me. =)

Also, to all my friends who wished me at facebook, phone calls and smses.
Thanks..!

Monday, October 20, 2008

The All New Yahoo! Mail

Just when I was permanently going to shift my calendar to google, I found out that Yahoo! has just recently come out with a new Calendar early this month. It's still at it's very early stage but at least, there is an improvement and a CHANGE since 1998.

It uses the iCal format where you have multiple calendars and it tries to integrate Flickr into it. Maybe this will be a useful feature for me as I will then be able to see what pictures I have taken at any particular time from my Yahoo! Calendar.

Oh well, guess I'll still update and manage BOTH Google and Yahoo! Calendar in the meantime. Apparently, I can integrate both calendars together but it doesn't seem to be working very well. Guess I'll give it a few months to finally decide which one I'll stick to.

If you'd like to change or try the New Yahoo! Calendar, you can do so here.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Migration from Yahoo to Google

I was browsing and surfing around the net yesterday and wanted to try something new.

It started from blogger's "Blogs that I read". I thought of subscribing to those since it kinda looks more 'organized'. From there, there was a link to "Google Reader" and I went there.. and started playing with it. It's basically an RSS reader but a much more organized one. Previously, I was using "My Yahoo" where I organize all my feeds including news and friend's blogs. But after seeing what Google Reader can do, I officially made it my "default" information reader. It's really much more user friendly and faster too!

After that, there was the embedding Google Reader into iGoogle. It's basically the incorporation of Google Search Website and something similar with My Yahoo. I was thinking whether to use it and after much consideration, I decided to replace My Yahoo with iGoogle since whatever I have inside My Yahoo can now be found from Google Reader. It's that good. Much faster than My Yahoo. Probably the only things I miss from My Yahoo is my Yahoo Mailbox Preview and my Yahoo Calendar.

Which leads to the next thing; Calendar. Currently, I organize all my events, birthday reminders, meetings and such in Yahoo Calendar. I started using Yahoo Calendar back in 2004 if I'm not wrong. So, I decided to see what Google Calendar offers and to my amazement, it kinda beats Yahoo Calendar.

Firstly, Google Calendar is able to let you use multiple calendars where you can separated your calendars to categories like "work", "personal", "birthdays", etc and can set different colors for different calendar views.

Google Calendar is also much faster than Yahoo Calendar.

They have intelligent time detection where you can just write "Meeting 7pm tomorrow"

Not only that, Google Calendar is able to send reminders to my Mobile for FREE! How nice of them.

Too bad the only thing that is not letting me migrate fully from Yahoo to Google is that my primary email is still Yahoo. All my emails are sent to Yahoo! and Gmail is er.. well, storage for me. Maybe next time if you want to send email to me, you can send it at gabsch@gmail.com =)
I'll still be able to check that email as I can see my inbox preview inside iGoogle.

Monday, October 13, 2008

23rd Birthday Celebration

My birthday is at the end of the month *coughs*27th*coughs* but it was celebrated earlier with elaynne (link contains her account of the event), wai seng, yi wang, de zien, shaun and yin sin together with zhi sin's birthday.

I was told that it's a birthday celebration for Zhi Sin ONLY and I was to be at Wai Seng's room at 6pm. We're gonna have pizza for dinner, talk and will last until very late.

So, I was there at 6pm to see De Zien sitting at the staircase. So, I joined him there and asked him why isn't he inside. And he told me it's a loong story and better wait for Elaine to fill me in. okayyy.. after a while, Zhi Sin came along. We walked our way towards Wai Seng's room only to be denied entry. Okay.. Fine, I thought. They wanted to forfeit Zhi Sin or something.

Next thing I know, I have to follow Zhi Sin to look for a location sent in Wai Seng's MMS. Okay... I now have to accompany Zhi Sin.. There were props at the location and next thing we knew, they wanted BOTH of us to pose with the props and dance to some music! hahah.. Like hell we would!! especially the dance part.. hahah

So, Zhi Sin was mooned them and I just happily stood there listening to Zhi Sin argue with them.. haha.. Let him do the 'dirty job' negotiating.. =P

Eventually, we "won" the negotiation and collected parcels from Wai Seng and Elaine's mailboxes; our birthday gifts.

Photobucket

We had Munchkins as our gifts!! I got the original Munchkin and Zhi Sin got Munchkin Bites! whahaha.. now we can play munchkins whenever we want.... =D

Munchkin Gifts (by P3rSeUs)

Later, we had marble-cheese cake (the birthday cake), Sarpino's Pasta and Oishin's Pizza!
Familiar? We had pizza from the same place for my birthday the year before... But their pizzas and pastas are nice.... =)

Oishi Pizza (by P3rSeUs)

Sarpino's Seafood Pasta (by P3rSeUs)

We ate till we couldn't fit anymore stuff in our stomach and played Munchkins from 830pm till 330am!! Amazing.. hahah..



Birthday Cake (by P3rSeUs)

Thanks guys for the celebration! Appreciate it.. =)

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Family Trip - Cameron Highlands

This Cameron Trip is one of the very rare COMPLETE FAMILY trip since many years ago. Normally, one or two of my siblings won't be free as they have their own important affairs but not this time. This time, EVERYONE made it back for the family trip! including me! I have to skip my classes cause Singapore only has one-day Raya Holiday. Sucks..

Anyway, this Cameron Trip consists of ALL my nuclear family, my eldest aunty and her daughter, and all my nephews and nieces; except for my eldest nephew as he has to prepare for his SPM Examinations. Coincidentally, all spouses of my siblings were not able to make it; so, it's just US! =)

We rented a bungalow at Tanah Rata at one of the hill's peak.

The bungalow house (by P3rSeUs)

It's a 3-storey bungalow with 3 sections. My family took the furthest one towards the end. The first storey is where the dining table and kitchen is.

The dining table (by P3rSeUs)

The 2nd storey is another living room furnished with Astro and bedrooms for everyone. It consists of one master bedroom, one very big room and lots of locked rooms. haha
The TV area (by P3rSeUs)

This is the multipurpose room where my mum, all my sisters and my nieces/nephews will sleep. Me, my brother and my dad has to sleep on the 3rd storey; where it only has 3 mattresses and a couch
The ladies' room (by P3rSeUs)

So, what places did we go in Cameron Highlands you may ask? Basically, no where!! We just loitered in the house to chill and relax.

These are the only outdoor activities that we have done.

Visiting the Tea Plantation
Tea Plantation (by P3rSeUs)

Rosemary and her daughter, Marielle
Going down the tea plantation (by P3rSeUs)

Tea Time at the tea plantation
Tea Time!

Playing at the playground
Playing catch (by P3rSeUs)

Monkey bars (by P3rSeUs)

Other than that... again, we just chill out!

We laze around the bed...
Rise and Shine (by P3rSeUs)

Play cards
Play cards (by P3rSeUs)

Camwhore
The kids (by P3rSeUs)

Play sparkles
Playing with Sparkles (by P3rSeUs)

Sparkles (by P3rSeUs)

And of course, there are also the 'workers' who do the kitchen chores and feed the youngs. haha

Preparing food (by P3rSeUs)

We had steamboat for one night
Steamboat (by P3rSeUs)

and BBQ for another night!
BBQ (by P3rSeUs)

My sister brought back jumbo size german sausages!! It's sooo gooodd!! especially with mustard. Actually, the sausages shown here are from 3 different countries; Austria (Vienna), Germany and Switzerland
German Sausages (by P3rSeUs)

Grilled Sausages (by P3rSeUs)

Oh, and the weather there? It's bloody cold! It rained everyday throughout our stay. Can even see the clouds outside the house.
Mist (by P3rSeUs)

Clouds outside (by P3rSeUs)


Overall, it's something that's worth skipping all my classes even if it means that I have lots more work to catch up. A truly de-stressing event in the midst of my final year education.

Monday, October 06, 2008

A Worthwhile Break

I was back in Malaysia during the Raya Holidays where I skipped my Thursday and Friday classes. Went to Cameron Highlands with my family and it was a great break!! Shall blog about it when I have the time. But for now, I have lots of catching up to do; almost like I'm one week behind...

Things will get busier now.. I wonder when I can have another break.. From what I can see, most likely after my examinations... No wait.. I still have to do my FYP!! argh!! *sigh*