Best Ramen in Singapore and Hongkong

Our favourite ramen pig-out place in Singapore has got to be Ippudo at Robertson Quay. Mainly because the likelihood of a queue is not as high as that in Mandarin Gallery. Taste-wise, they’re very very similar – so obviously we’d prefer to frequent a place less crowded 🙂

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You just can’t go wrong with ramen at Ippudo – my favourite would be the spicy ramen. You can choose to have your noodles soft, medium or hard and the best part about the ramen is the egg. It’s yolk is the right consistency – still soft and flow(y). However, for me, what sets them apart from other ramen stalls is that the egg actually tastes slightly sweet and salty, whereas other ramen stalls use eggs that are somewhat bland (though some do get the yolk consistency correct).

However, earlier in September this year, hubby and I tried Butao Ramen in Hongkong. It is amaze-balls! It beats Ippudo in Singapore hands down.

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Above: My spicy ramen at Butao Ramen (“Red King”)

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Above: Hubby’s black ramen (“Black King”)

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Above: Absolutely divine egg. Right yolk consistency and also has that slightly sweet, salty taste – not bland at all.

We went to the outlet at Causeway Bay.

Well, since we reside in Singapore, Ippudo is definitely good enough – but have to say if Butao Ramen brings its franchise to Singapore, it would definitely give Ippudo a run for its money. 🙂

P.S: At Ippudo, we normally would order garlic to crush and add to our ramen for that extra oomph. But for Butao Ramen, the broth is already super tasty as it is without having to add any seasoning or garlic 😉

My Pregnancy Pillow – by Theraline

I am currently into the 27th week of my 2nd pregnancy and for some reason, my back pain is alot worse now than during my 1st pregnancy. So I had to go in search of a pregnancy pillow. The long u-shaped kind. 🙂

Having used it for a few nights now, I can’t say I regret it much. 🙂 I don’t mind it that it is filled with micro-beads instead of the regular foam or down feather commonly used in pillows – which means that I can shake the beads to one side (either on the side that I’m leaning my back on or the side which is under my belly).

Purchased this from Spring Maternity at Vivocity.

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‘confinement period’ myths & practices

In a follow up on this post, I have to update/add that the scars initially left behind by my heat rash is now no more. During the 1 month confinement, I used Palmer’s Scar Serum religiously every time after shower. It is super sticky, but hey, I’m vain and used it anyway. I suppose it worked for me as now the scars are gone! 🙂

Germaine's World As She Knows It

Being asian and pregnant usually involves a period of 30-day confinement. My mom being a first time grandparent was eager to be the appointed confinement lady. And so she was.

While at the hospital recuperating after deliivery, my parents brought over Red Date and Longan Tea, both key ingredients are “heaty”. Before going further into detail, for the benefit of other cultures who are not familiar, asian confinement period during the 30 days typically involves the following:

  • no showering
  • no washing of hair (yes you read this right, for a period of 30 days)
  • consuming lots of “heaty” food such as : ginger (by the truck load), red dates, chicken, liver, kidneys assortment of chinese herbs meant to nourish the body as it is believed that after delivery, the woman’s body experiences alot of wind and loss of blood.
  • no exposure to the fan/aircon
  • be house-confined, no going out for…

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Time waits for no man

 

Our baby girl is growing up fast. Here she is at 14.5months. We pray that she grows up healthy, happy and financially independent. 🙂

Looking back at all the old videos on youtube, I realise that we cannot hold on to time. As much as we try to spend most of our free time with her, we can never stop her from growing. And we shouldn’t. Except to cherish and treasure each waking moment with her.

At 4 months, she was babbling, not able to talk nor indicate her wants, nor walk. At 6 months, she is paying close attention to the environment around her – eyes more alert. She knows when you’re talking to her. She can hold her head up. Starting to prop herself up at 7 months – we thought that was pretty amazing. Then she started to crawl at 8 months, which we thought at that time – wow, can mother nature surprise us anymore? We felt super proud when she took her first step at 9 months (sometime end Feb/early March 2014). We felt proud not because she started walking early. We just simply felt proud because our firstborn took her first steps. Now at 14.5 months, she is pointing her wants, knows how to say basic words, she knows a dog says “woof, woof”, a sheep says “baa, baa” and a duck says “quack, quack”. She likes dancing  and loves to run in open spaces (as most toddlers do, i think).

I wonder what the next few months and years will bring. But one thing I can be sure – I can never stop time. It waits for no man.

Babymoon Part II – Las Vegas Baby!

Let me just begin by saying that our trip to Vegas was hottt.. quite literally. In a 40 degree heat, i could feel my skin burning.

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Our front row seats to the Shania Twain concert. Unfortunately, Celine Dion was not showing at the time we were there, else, we would definitely have watched CD instead.

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My outfit for the night 🙂

We had Homestead for dinner in Caesars Palace – the lamb rack I ordered was not bad. Doesn’t look like much though..

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The next morning – we tried a breakfast place opposite Bellagio. It was so-so but I have to rave about the breakfast we had at Central, which is a 24hr restaurant in Caesars Palace (CP).

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Above: View of Bellagio from opposite the breakfast place. 

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So at Central, I ordered crabmeat omelette for breakfast. The one thing I appreciate most about this is that it is actually nice chunks of crab meat! Not crab mince, not crab shreds, not crab floss ( as how we would get back in SG).  I also ordered the crab cakes – but it was sooo tasty, I ate before I could take a photo of it. So if anyone goes to CP after reading this, do give the crab cake at Central a shot. Yummmyyy

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Our outfit for the day before roaming the shops at Bellagio and the Wynn.

I don’t gamble – so I would have to say that my most memorable activity in Vegas is SHOPPING! at the North Premium outlet. We took a bus one way (stops right outside the breakfast place that is opposite Bellagio), paid $8/person which is good for a round trip. But it was just so damn crowded – I told DH there was no way I was taking the same bus back to CP from the premium outlet after we are done shopping for the day, armed with our bags full of shopping. So on the way back, we took a cab from North Premium outlet to CP – only cost us $20 for that trip. So my advise – just take the friggin cab. 🙂

We went crazy at the premium outlets here in Vegas. Everything was CHEAP!!! & i guess with summer sale on, there was another 40-50% off listed prices. So we went crazy. I would have come back here for a 2nd day if my legs weren’t aching so bad at the end of the day.

I would definitely come back to Vegas for shopping! – if we are already in America.

 

 

 

 

Babymoon Part I – NYC

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Our rental car during the first part of our trip – in Illinois (accompanied DH on a work trip). It was  quite crazy for us to adjust to left hand drive. Everything was all over the place!

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This was the start of our holiday! First stop – NYC. Bryant Park was a nice place – and I liked how there are parks right in the middle of one of the world’s busiest city.

 

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A spot in the park for people to play board games. Nice!

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Our first time in Times Square. In my opinion – as how it is seen in the movies, but not as glamorous and slightly over-rated.

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Made it up to the Rockefeller Tower – suppose it was nice, but it was quite a hassle to go up and down. If we go back to NYC, highly doubt we would come back here – unless maybe with the child(ren).

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nice view of central park

We were pretty hungry after that, so we went to search ourselves some nice seafood. 🙂

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Our hotel was right next to Grand Central Terminal – which is pretty convenient.

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I have a gripe about the train station system in nyc. As you can see from above, the sign on the top left indicates subway 4, 5, 6, 7. As a foreigner and total stranger to this city, now is that line number 4, 5, 6, 7? Or is that a subway platform 4,5,6,7? or is that subway stop number 4,5,6,7???? And again, if this was the correct way to board the subway, you mean I need to take a separate shuttle to connect myself to the subway? Frankly, we have had an easier time manoeuvring the trains and subways of Tokyo than NYC – and Tokyo is supposedly more complicated (as claimed by Westerners) and further, the signboards in Tokyo are NOT in English. The above signboard is in friggin english, but makes no sense to me. Seriously, america, (as we say in “Singlish”), wake up your idea!

I mean, I’m definitely sure the locals totally get this subway/train station, but the signboards are SERIOUSLY not user-friendly nor tourist-friendly! (kinda like finding platform 9 and 3/4 to Hogworts!)

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Taking the courtesy photo in front of Macy’s.

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We possibly went to NYC at the right time – it was summer sale everywhere!!

 

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Our damage on the first day 🙂

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Some random park we passed by after Macy’s

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That night, we went to watch a show on Broadway – called Kinky Boots. It was pretty good – great comedy, great storyline. But not sure if it was worth SGD480 for 2 pax.

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This was at Totto Ramen – supposedly one of the better ones in nyc. Not quite suited to our tastebuds though – far too sweet for our liking. Much prefer the ones we have back here in Sg. Surprisingly a pretty long wait. At 10.30pm, we still had to wait about 20mins before we were seated. We had one of the ramens below. Call me judgemental, but which proper ramen shop uses pepper in their ramen??? Sorryy, this cannot be authentic.

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Day 2 shopping damage – love the variety in nyc. obviously not the cheapest prices for european brands, but definitely more variety than back here in Sg.

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Outside the famous Plaza Hotel.

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Blue Note is supposedly one of the good jazz places in nyc. All I can say after this is – jazz music is definitely not my cup of tea.

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The meatpacking district at the High Line. Nice area for a stroll in the evening.

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Trying out the panoramic function on the iPhone5 for the first time. not too bad.

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Some nice looking seafood at Chelsea market near the meatpacking district.

All in all, we did enjoy the trip to nyc and would most probably come back for shopping. But next stop should be Italy & France for branded goods.. lol

 

 

 

 

 

Baby #2… Hopefully

It’s been awhile since I last blogged. For several reasons, I have not had the mood to blog >> About 2 months back, I found out I was pregnant again. Which should be a happy reason for most people – except that the doctor did not give me quite positive news on my pregnancy. 

Baby #2 was growing in a waterbag that is too small for its size. So the doctor put me on hormone pills, and did not explain further to me the implications of what a small water bag size. In comes Mr Google (which I assure you, is not a good thing all the time) who gave me all sorts of answers till I went crazy trying to figure out myself what could the possible implications be of a small water bag. 

Crazy-ass terminology like Oligohydramnios starting popping out on the Google Results screen. Obviously, it drove me nuts – especially when it reads that chances of miscarriage could be quite high, etc. I was in no mood to blog about any damn thing. & I was feeling drowsy so often from the hormone pills prescribed by the doctor. 

I am currently 17 weeks and will be seeing the doctor on Wed (6 Aug 2014) – hopefully all goes well. It has been 2 doctor visits since he first told me of my small water bag size. & he says that my condition is improving. He told me no gym, just lots of rest, lay in bed all day (which is friggin impossible to do when you have another 14 month old running around the house). No gym for me is quite a bummer as I would normally hit the stepper at least 3x a week. He said there wasn’t enough blood supply and nutrients going to the foetus – so no gym this pregnancy (I was rather active at the gym during my first pregnancy). He was also against the hubby and I going on a trip to the USA due to my condition (but we had already purchased the tickets and could not get a refund), so we went ahead with baby moon trip anyway… more on this in the next post. 

Keeping my fingers crossed for the 6 Aug doctor appointment…