Saturday, November 29, 2008

Sch. Holiday Treats: Visiting the Singapore Art Museum

Its the school holidays so its time for my girls to explore various parts of Singapore, tourist spots and museums for some learning experience. We checked out the Singapore Art Museum on Thursday to see what its all about.

The last time we hit exploring a museum was the National Museum. Post for that can be found HERE. The people over at the National Heritage Board caught my post that was posted up at as a National Museum feature. *Honoured honoured hahaha* and thankfully sent us complimentary tickets to the Singapore Art Museum to check it out. Each ticket costs $8. My mother in law came along too!

So at around 3pm that day. We reached the museum. Posed in front of the sign up front and then head in.

Passed our complimentary tickets to the gentleman over the counter who promptly gave us little blue stickers which we stuck on our shirts and went in.

First thing I noticed were the lights... very pretty lah! But must be such a pain to upkeep. Very nice though... then I looked around and then noticed.. chandeliers! ..... I like!

Very nice... apparently according to CJ, the S.A.M was converted from the Old St. Joseph's Institution of way back then. And SJI was his school. :) So looking around the place, you can see where the old chapel was and the various "classrooms" and halls and stairwells where students once roamed.

We went up a spiral staircase and was greeted by this "devilish" dog creature thing on a plastic cushion which was pearched on a gondola... hmn.. it gave off some sexual sadomachoistic underlying vibes with the part man part dog thing exposing its penis and being strapped up with needles... and horns etc... okay.. thinking too much... moving on....

Then here was this statue of a wired man.. interesting.. then we entered various rooms. Frankly, I was uninspired because looking at things in terms of symmetry, repetition, space and materials was not something I really wanted to visit again in terms of design and pattern. School is over! But the girls seemed like they were enjoying themselves running from hall to hall...

The rooms were cold and we walked along the spaces looking at what was displayed on the walls and on the floor. Various shapes and abstract pieces all around.

Once in a while we would come across some pieces that made me stand and stare for a while. I remember doing something like this for design class when I was doing my advertising & design studies some years back...

Structures on the wall. I found this one quite striking.

And we entered a dark corridor attracted by some moving screens and walked into a dark room where there was a bench and these 3 screens. Each showing the same scene but from different angles. It was of this lady in a leather outfit sweeping silver plastic balls in a garage. It would start with her sweeping and the balls bouncing around and you could see this done from all 3 angles. I would assume that this was to give the impression of perspective.

We walked along the halls and came to a local artist corner where there was a carpeted area with soft PVC covered "blocks" and the girls took the opportunity to play and stack these soft blocks. Lauren with her castle.

And Eirian didn't really build anything, she just pushed the blocks about and was categorising them by colour.

They played for awhile whilst I strolled around the area looking at paintings done by local artists.

Then we went up to the 3rd floor which had a Korean Art Exhibition. Some pieces were somewhat peculiar, abstract, some with alot of clutter and there were pieces that were done 3D style. I like this piece because it reminded me of Toy Story, the cartoon.

The 3D pieces was what I found interesting bc they were flat art pieces but were painted with such depth of shading that they looked like they were popping out and 3D! I stood in front of each piece to sway left, right, front and back just to admire how holographic they looked.

Then we saw this one. From afar, it looked like a small patch of grass which seemed to be like a green glass covered walkway as you walked closer but upon closer inspection. This "walkway" was not grass but made of many many little people supporting the thick glass slabs. Put together, they formed a solid base.

This was interesting to me because I'm sure there are times where we always wonder how things work or how things are built and if there were actually little people like that making things happen. Ie little people in the ATM machines.. or little people in our heads when we have a headache.. or little people in vending machines...

But the best of all was this piece which I thought was absolutely beautiful. I stood looking at this piece for a while because I love how they made that droplet of water look so 3D and showed how water has focal and magnification power of something it's placed against. And colour wise, it was just gorgeous. Somehow though, it seemed reminiscent of an art piece I'd expect to see in a lobby of a 5 star hotel.

Along the corridors, there were many displays of clay art which was made into various abstract forms, there was a long stretch of these shell-like sea creatures that lined the cabineted displays. Along with explainations of various methods of how to manipulate clay... ie. pinching....

We entered another room which had a wall filled with these coloured glass bottles with coloured oil. Visually very stunning and if these were Vodka bottles, I would have thought it would make an excellent display at a nightspot.

The girls took another photo in front of a shiny silver reflective wall before we moved on. As you can tell, Lauren really loves that polka dot dress.

There were some pieces of industrial design like this copper pipe piece.

And we entered a room with a really high wall and we noticed that it was tiled with tiles! Differently designed pieces of tiles that they lined up the whole wall. Some with actual objects stuck on them ie teddy bears, rubber duckies, photo frames, and other little toys. The rest were painted. It was like as if a huge group of people came together and everyone contributed a tile and they stuck it up on the wall. There were so many and the wall so huge, even after stepping back, to the farthest wall, I could not capture all of the tiles in one single shot.

And next to it was another huge wall filled with a very colourful drawing of pens & pencils. This picture was only 1/6th of the whole wall. Indeed something very visually stunning.

We went downstairs again after walking about for a short while and entered another room to be greeted with a room wall filled with portraits like this! They all looked like they were staring right at you! Scary....

Right in front of this wall was a table and it had colour pencils and papers for the children to colour so the girls sat themselves down and did a little colouring while I walked about viewing the other exhibits in that room.

I found yet another corridor so I walked in and was greeted by another video wall.

This video projected show was quite strange but yet strangely intruiging. It had a naked woman kneeling and not moving.

And seconds after, from the ceiling came pouring down streams and streams of flour. Right over her head. And she doesn't move while this goes on for about 2 minutes. The flour just keeps piling on her head, shoulders and body and she doesn't move. My mom in law and I just stood there silently and watched as the flour streamed on this woman.

Then it stopped and she shook off the flour from her head and body onto the floor around herself and gathered it into a pile in front of her and then.... water started dripping from the ceiling right into her flour pile and she started mashing and kneading the flour into a huge dough ball.

All the while she was doing that, my mom in law kept on commenting "eeee... eeee.. would u eat that? would u eat that?" ahahaahaha!

That woman made it seem like she was very buay song *not satisfied* while she was kneading the dough, slapping it about and wacking it. When the dough was formed into a ball, she rolled it out and started pull it into little pieces and throwing the individual pieces onto the floor.

When it was all broken up, she gathered it all again and made it on big lump. The End.

That video must have gone on for at least 8 minutes but we still stood there TWICE to watch it. It must have been that she was naked that it was so intruiging. And who makes bread like that anyway!?!

Naked and making bread that way? = Strange = Classified as Art. Wahahhaaa...

Personally, I found the National Museum a whole lot more interesting than the S.A.M. I wouldn't go again unless they have something really interesting. Now that I know whats in there and somewhat now you too.. I'd recommend if you want to bring your kids to a museum this school holiday.. make it the National Museum and leave the S.A.M for a day where you're reflective and want some time alone. Without the kids so that you can sip your latte at DOME which is right at the museum itself - Al Fresco.

Is that me? Yeah.. thats me - not very impressed as I expected to be awed by some arty farty experience.

It was an experience though.

Lauren on the other hand says "so nice! I like!"... err... SOTA* anyone? I think I should start saving up for a course for her there in some years... *SOTA - School Of The Arts* or maybe La-Salle or maybe NAFA.... we'll see... and leave it up to her.

Beefy Mushroom Spaghetti w/ Corn

Made Beefy Mushroom Spaghetti w/ Corn today for dinner and it was good as usual!

Whats needed for this?

1 large bottle prego. tomato sauce
4 large cloves of garlic *minced*
1 can of button mushrooms *sliced*
8-10pcs of large fresh mushrooms *sliced*
3 large tomatoes *diced*
500gms minced beef *you can use chicken or pork*

Season with...

1 tbs black pepper
10 dashes white pepper
10 dashes italian spice
5 dashes oregano

Put garlic, tomatoes and mushrooms in a pan and pan fry till everything turns soft, about 5-8 minutes. Add tomato sauce and seasoning. Blend well for about 3-5 minutes and add minced meat and stir occasionally till fully cooked through. About 10-15 minutes on a simmer.

Boil spaghetti or linguine noodles in salt/oil water till soft, drain & put aside. Boil corn in boiling water for about 10 minutes. Drain and put aside.

The boiled corn made an excellent choice as a side as it added bursts of sweetness with each bite. When all done, assemble & serve with cheddar & parmesan cheese. Enjoy! :)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Soy Joy Event Picture Update

The nice people over at Ogilvy PR sent over some pictures taken from the event. So I'll share it here too as an update. :) Apparently this mugshot montage was the surprise that they were talking about to recieve today. And everyone kena the High GI card bc we ate everything except one! Pwee...

And Uh oh! They caught me wolfing down the banana and talking to Marina.

And of course, whats a product driven event without POSING with the product. :) Say SoyJoy! SoyJoy!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Soy Joy Open Room Bloggers Event

I was invited to the Soy Joy Open Room Bloggers event held last night at Ann Siang Street. The PR person managing this event dropped me an email sometime last week to see if I was interested in attending so I did. And I brought Lauren along with me too! There were so many pictures taken of her, I'm sure I'll have to track them down once people start blogging about the event.

When we reached the location, we went up the townhouse to find that it had a very gorgeous interior! I love the staircase leading up to the roof.. very rustic yet modern... we entered with alot of cooing "ooohhh.... very pretty!" Hhahaa...! Kudos to them to selecting a location as such which was private and very plush for an exclusive invitation only event like this. I like.

On the agenda was Soy Joy obviously along with some snacks, a movie - Super Size Me which was about a man who went on a 30 day McDonalds only Binge to find out the effects of what eating too much fast food can do to a healthy man like himself. The results obviously were not good leading up to him having liver problems, depression and poor sexual performance issues amongst several other health issues that appeared during this experiment.

We were introduced to the 4 flavours of the new SoyJoy Bars. Namely Apple, Hawthorn Berry, Raisin Almond and Cacao Orange. We tried all of them. Personally, I think the Raisin Almond one is the best of them all.

As a person who eats various types of bars - protein bars, nut bars, granola bars.. I love bars.. SoyJoy tasted relatively different. It didn't pack as much sugar kick as you would have in other bars which were innately sugar laden.

Its Soy based and roughly tasted like fruit cake rather than what you would expect in a bar. I would have to say that it would probably make a good fibre choice as it did take some chewing before it could be comfortably swallowed.

Lauren didn't like it at all but I would assume that children, who are naturally attracted to more sugar laden choices are not the ones who would be taking SoyJoy as a choice bar. Eirian on the other hand however, LOVED IT. And with that, she was "awarded" with all the Soy Joy bars that we brought home for her own personal consumption.

Packaging wise, I would say that they had made it pretty attractive. I would pick one up based on how it attracted me on the shelf. Their advertisement was also quirky albeit a little disturbing to me. A fruit giving birth and then its "a bar!".... OOOokay.. a little corny.. but memorable nonetheless which is what advertising aims to do, put the product on the top of mind recall.

The topic of the evening was about Low GI food which means Low Glycemic Index. Which is one of the unique selling points of the SoyJoy bar. It would be considered a healthier choice of bar because of its Low GI content.

As any of my readers would know, I have been on a low carb. diet since last year which had lead to the weightloss that you have been reading about over the past couple of months. Quite frankly, I have not monitored the GI of the carbs that I have selected but this is still good to know in the long term in terms of making better food choices, carbohydrate wise. I'll definitely look into this esp. now that I'll be incorporating carbs back into my diet as my journey comes to a close once I hit 55kg and it would be good to get in the "better"carbs rather than eat the empty ones. Correct?

What is Glycemic Index? I have adapted the following information from the Glycemix Index website where you can find out more about GI. They also have a complete GI food chart too which you can use for reference if you are interested.

"Not all carbohydrate foods are created equal, in fact they behave quite differently in our bodies. The glycemic index or GI describes this difference by ranking carbohydrates according to their effect on our blood glucose levels. Choosing low GI carbs - the ones that produce only small fluctuations in our blood glucose and insulin levels - is the secret to long-term health reducing your risk of heart disease and diabetes and is the key to sustainable weight loss."

What are the benefits of the Glycemic Index?

Eating a lot of high GI foods can be detrimental to your health because it pushes your body to extremes. This is especially true if you are overweight and sedentary. Switching to eating mainly low GI carbs that slowly trickle glucose into your blood stream keeps your energy levels balanced and means you will feel fuller for longer between meals.

Low GI diets help people lose and control weight
Low GI diets increase the body's sensitivity to insulin
Low GI carbs improve diabetes control
Low GI carbs reduce the risk of heart disease
Low GI carbs reduce blood cholesterol levels
Low GI carbs reduce hunger and keep you fuller for longer
Low GI carbs prolong physical endurance
High GI carbs help re-fuel carbohydrate stores after exercise

A Wiki. definition of the Glycemic Index can be found HERE for more information.

So we were given nametags upoon settling in to our chosen sofa for the evening and were told once again of the agenda for the evening that after the movie, a dietician would be telling us more about Low GI. That presentation after the show was indeed informative and also involved a short question & answer session too.

Lauren was very pleased to have one of her own too. Nice touch by the organisers to keeping everyone who attended involved. And shortly after, as bloggers do best, it became a short cam-loving session! It was particularly fun snapping shots of eachother simply because, we all knew each other already! Somewhat at least.

So there was Claudia and me... see Lauren peeking from behind! Babe! I'll see you at dance class soon arh!

and there was Marina and me.... hey babe! Very nice meeting you after reading you for some time now. :)

and Nadnut and me.... *this pic was taken with Nadia's camera... and obviously it is colour superior - see how we don't look "deer in the headlights" brightly stunned like my other pictures? -Damn! I need a new camera*

Hey Nadia! When I'm feeling better, come by for the launch of BodyJam dance class on the 5th of December okay! :)

And Nicole and me... I love how she introduced herself... "honeymeow? I read your blog." Hhahaaha... never fails to tickle me when I hear that... and it was very LOVELY meeting you too! :) Nicole very graciously sent me this photo from her camera... thank you!

And then we moved on to the snacks.. alot of snacks!! And I ate ALL OF THEM... I didn't finish them all but I surely ate some of everything.

Bananas and crackers... I like bananas...

Chocolate bars and Potato Chips... and I had a whole bar to myself too.. argh... the temptations...

More Chips and Twisties... and other than these there were spring rolls, lamb kebabs, chicken wings, and some other little appetisers which the waiters and waitresses carried about for everyone to pick off.. no pictures of those bc they came and went so fast!

So when the show was over, the organisers distributed goodybags which included a set of Soyjoy bars and... a sheet of paper that was this.....

And then we looked at the back of the sheet and realised.. HO HO HO! Even the snacks were "set up" specific to their "experiment" and when asked if we ate everything.. well. many of us just went "oh man! we ate everything!!" so we ticked off every box. The only thing I didn't have was the carbonated drinks because I opted for water for the evening.

Before we all left, we were requested to submit our form as above and take a picture. Which we did holding a blank piece of vanguard sheet. They would definitely superimpose something against that blank sheet with that picture so I'm waiting to see what they're going to do with that shot since everyone took one. They mentioned that we'll hear from them this Friday so I'm assuming that it has something to do with the picture. We'll see.

And after all that was over, Lauren and I headed for supper and walked right into... BURGER KING! For some high GI burgers and Onion rings... bwuahahhahahaah!

Okay thats it... :) Soy Joy Open Room Bloggers event evening... Go grab a Soy Joy and try it.. since I have a couple of them, I'm definitely popping some of them into my bag to take before dance classes as a quick treat...

And before I end all this... one more picture because I just can't resist it as I actually look healthy when I'm still sick as a cow.... SMILE! Say SoyJoy!! *sniff sniff sneeze*


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Weightloss Update: An insanely quick 67.5kg

I stepped on the scales this morning and I did that at least 10 times.

Its an insane drop of another 1.5kg from Sundays' weigh in of 69kg.

I'm now 67.5kg! A total of 32.5kg down from 100kg and only 12.5kg away from my goal!! Its getting nearer! I'm a little euphoric...

Damn! I should stay sick longer! Esp. since I've had so much to eat and its still dropping.


Hahahha!! Anyway.. its all good... if I was well and actually went running, I would easily move down the scales another 1-2 more kg after all that workout... lets see what the next couple of days will bring...


Monday, November 24, 2008

What sick people eat...

When sick, do as the sick do and... eat porridge to keep the digestive system light...

So I made fish slice porridge for all at home today. Complete with sliced century egg, stirfried Dou-miao veggies with garlic, blanched bak choy with oyster sauce and black bean minced pork with Tofu.

And we had green bean soup on the side too. I was apprehensive cooking today esp since my nose was blocked and I couldn't taste anything. But then again, I realised that I don't taste my food while cooking anyway so it should be alright and they all came out fine.

Dinner was good. I still am not. In fact, I'm a little worse now than before with a medium grade fever brewing, blocked ears - which is annoying me to hell. Anyone know how to unblock blocked ears? and the constant nose blowing is making me wonder how much mucus can really be up in my head! It just keeps on producing!! Arghh!!!

And to my Zumba/Rumba dance people who have been buzzing me all day today since I've missed classes since last week. Thank you for your concern lah..a little overwhelming can....I can so feel the luuurve.. hahaha... I miss u all too but I'm not gone. I'm just down & out.

-.-'' Darned flu bug caught me if you haven't already read but I'll be back up at class as soon as this flu decides to let up. :) My bones are getting creaky from not dancing for so many days already!! I need to move!! You pple will see me soon. :)