The Best of 2016

They say, "The more you give, the more you receive." 

Modesty aside, I am generous by nature. My family and closest friends could attest to that. I strongly believe it is the very reason why I am blessed. I know some people cringe with the hashtag #blessed but I truly am in every sense of the word. I am blessed abundantly year after year after since 2007, the year I re-married and finally redeemed myself from the pit of life's unimaginable trials and tribulations. 2016 wasn't an exemption. In fact, we were blessed over-abundantly last year and we are extremely grateful.

Of course, I am not trying to say my life has been nothing short but perfect ever since. Anyone's life wouldn't be complete without a bit of drama and hardships here and there. It's what makes us human. But as my blog title implies, I only share the highlights of our year. We do have fair share of ups and downs but it's my personal choice to only share the best days we had in the past year.

Here's our 2016 Year in Review:

JANUARY
It has become a habit of hubby and I to celebrate every 28th of the month. We were off to a great start having an impromptu date at D' Good Cafe. That day turned our to be a day to remember, so I documented it here for posterity. I did wish 2016 will be a better year for our marriage as we were badly shaken in 2015.


Other highlights of January 2016 for us include visiting the newly revamped Chinatown Heritage Centre, and Bondate with K at Osaka Osho. I also had blog sponsors in December which I was only able to blog about in January because we were away for a long break. I truly loved D' Elegance and still benefit from their body shapers up to this day. Also, I would do an eyelash extension with Beauty Hope again in a heart beat to save me some time from curling and lengthening my eyelashes by applying mascara.

FEBRUARY
The month of love landed us at The Flutes, a very rare fine-dining indulgence hubby and I do at least once a year. In the same memorable month, quicky bondate with K at Nene Chicken, high tea with my girlfriends at Amara Hotel, and family date at Vista Mall on St. Valentine's Day after G's trial class at My Gym @ Buona Vista. Coincidentally, all those happened in five consecutive days so I documented it again as a sign of gratitude for a five days well spent.


Other highlights of our February 2016 include receiving abundant CNY blessings, food and shopping trip at Ikea Tampines, visiting Singapore Zoo and River Safari with my MIL, another bondate with K at Kith Cafe, checking out Dahlia Dreams Floral Display at Gardens by the Bay, Beach Day with Olympus OMD and a much-needed detox with Expression's Wellness.

MARCH
The most memorable day of our March 2016 has got to be watching Disney on Ice for the very first time! You can read our review of the spectacular show here.


During March school holidays, we also visited Children's Festival at Gardens by the Bay right after watching Disney on Ice, Kaboodle Kids, Kingdom MOSH! at Sentosa, and the inaugural floral display of breathtaking Sakura Blooms at Flower Dome.

APRIL
The highlight of our April 2016 has got to be our 3D2N stay at Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour and revisiting Legoland Malaysia to finally check out Legoland Water Park and enjoy the rides once again at Legoland Theme Park.


Other noteworthy happenings include having Salmon Egg V Facial Treatment at Expressions, attending BlogMeet SG event for the first time and visiting Gardens by the Bay again for the Tulipmania Rediscovered floral display.

MAY
I was spoiled rotten in May as we celebrated Mother's Day at Salt Water Cafe. I was treated to a free buffet complete with pretty and thoughtful Mother's Day cookies. Best of all, I received so much love from the kids and the hubby. They always give me handmade cards and flowers and I love it!


Other highlights of our May 2016 include discovering Spicy Thai Thai Cafe, coming up with my very own quinoa salad recipe, working with Garden Picks and being invited to an Appreciation Dinner by the Singapore Kindness Movement.

JUNE
We had the funnest vacation in Penang for the second time in June 2016 in collaboration with Golden Sands Resort. We had a ball of a time lazing around the resort and maximizing its fabulous facilities, we had a memorable time at Penang's nature themed Escape Park, and we did mural hunting in Georgetown. Definitely a travel experience that we'll remember in a long time, if not forever.

Other highlights of our June school holidays 2016 include attending the launch of Valcucine's first kitchen showroom in Singapore, G playing as VIP (Very Important Paleontologist) at Tanglin Mall, learning about marine conservation at KidsSTOP, attending a trial class at People Impact (G still remembers Teacher CK up to this day), being invited to try The Manhattan Fish Market's new breakfast menu, celebrating Father's Day by playing tourists and re-exploring the Singapore River via tug boat, having facial treatment at Adonis and working with 3AM.

*3rd and 4th quarter of 2016 to be continued...


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How to Create Flawless Skin

We all want to look in the mirror and see a healthy complexion staring back at us. Unfortunately, our skin cannot always be flawless. Most people are prone to spots and blemishes, which is often all we can see when we look at a reflection. However, there are a few little tips to improve your skin.

Sleep
One of the easiest and best ways to improve your skin is by enjoying a good night’s sleep. Late nights can take their toll under eyes, as dark circles will give away your lack of sleep. If you want your skin to appear fresh and healthy, enjoy at least seven hours of sleep per night. So, give up the late-night movies and opt for an early night instead! Your skin will thank you for it.

Relax
It is important you take time to relax, no matter how busy and stressful your personal or professional life can be. Physical stress and tension can play havoc with our bodies, including on a person’s skin and can worsen conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. Stress causes the cortisol hormone to break down elastin and collagen in the skin, which can lead to wrinkles and therefore a more mature complexion. So, if you want to slow down the ageing process, learn to slow down your body.

Moisturize
Healthy skin requires moisture, which is why you must maintain your skin’s water content. Moisturizing is a fantastic way to hydrate your skin, as it slows down water loss. You should therefore increase your moisturizing routine in the winter months, as it is during this season that the air can be quite dry. People with skin conditions should consult their doctor to discuss their moisturizing options to avoid flare-ups.

Wash & Cleanse
The air is full of all sorts of debris, which is why it is important to wash and cleanse your face every morning and night. The micro particles in the air can potentially weaken your skin, while makeup can clog your pores. So, wash away the day to maintain a fresh face.

Avoid Sugar
You know that annoying pimple that pops up at the worst moment? Well, that could be due to sugar. You should therefore aim to banish foods with a high glycaemic index and incorporate healthy fats into your diet, such as salmon and kale.

Self-Restraint
Speaking of pimples, you should never attempt to banish them yourself or you could be left with scarring on your face. If you cannot help yourself, treat a blemish with care through steaming or speak to a dermatologist about a diluted cortisone injection.

Botox

The thought of ageing can be a little scary, but Botox can be an effective anti-ageing treatment that can provide a more youthful appearance. So, you can say goodbye to crow’s feet and frown lines to feel more confident in your own skin. However, always ensure you make an appointment with a qualified practice, such as Your Laser Skin Care

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Surfing Locations That Have the Best Waves

There are hundreds of places to choose from for your next surfing holiday adventure. Whether you’re using a traditional surfboard or a water jet board you’ll find somewhere to suit you from one of the locations listed here.

A good surfing location doesn’t just have great waves, it should have a great atmosphere along with lots of cafés and bars.

source
For the best waves you have to have the perfect combination of wind, swell direction and tides. This combination can reliably bring on huge waves, sometimes up to 50ft tall.

It’s important to note that to surf monster waves you need to know what you’re doing, they’re certainly not for newbies!

Cape Fear, NSW

Cape Fear has huge waves but it can also be a dangerous place to surf as the water is relatively shallow. Only accomplished surfers should take on this location as there are plenty of obstacles that you don’t want to hit, including the reef bed and sharp barnacles.

Teahupoo, Tahiti

This area has extreme, powerful waves that you have to treat with respect. It also has very sharp reefs that you don’t want to be pushed into by a strong current. Teahupoo is a mecca for surfers because of its reliability in producing perfect waves. The sea floor is perfectly setup for creating these large waves because it goes from deep to shallow very quickly, making wave after beautiful huge wave.

Shipstern Bluff, Australia

Known as one of the most popular big wave locations, Shipstern Bluff is an iconic surfer’s paradise and it is also one of the most dangerous places to surf in the world.

This place is also known as Devil’s Point and is globally renowned. It is located near Tasmania in Australia. Most experienced surfers have heard of Shipstern Bluff and added it to their bucket list.

Padang Padang, Bali

This area has monster waves and beautiful beaches. While there are often large swells it’s also a great location for beginners. Kite surfers will also find the wind perfect for catching air at Padang Padang.

Banzai Pipeline, Hawaii

The Banzai Pipeline has claimed many victims over the years and has to be treated with respect. It’s notorious for giant waves that create a tube ride, hence the name Banzai Pipeline.

Conditions for creating these types of waves are excellent at this location because it has a flat table top reef that has caverns inside. This creates a big air bubble that pushes itself out from the front of the wave before it breaks. 

Mentawai, Indonesia

These islands have some of the most perfect surf in the world. Waves can be up to about 12 feet high and there are many big swells. It is one of the locations that is most likely to produce the biggest waves (with a 91% certainty). So if you want to find somewhere where you’re almost definitely going to be able to surf massive waves, Mentawai is it.

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Hammock Day Out with Yeo's Natural


It's been a while since we last had a picnic by the beach so I took the opportunity to bring my family for outdoor fun at Yeo's Hammock Day Out yesterday. It was held at one of our favourite parks in Singapore, East Coast Park. Having lived in the East since the day we landed our feet in the Little Red Dot almost 12 years ago, we frequent this long stretch of sandy beach that offers invigorating and exciting diversity of sports activities, plethora of dining options and family-friendly recreational activities like sand castle building, kite flying, cycling, camping and more.


It was a beautiful sunny day albeit extra warmer. Thankfully, we were provided with lovely hammocks to sit back, relax and enjoy a picnic under the shade of the swaying coconut palms. We were also given free flow of Yeo's 100% Natural Coconut Water to keep ourselves hydrated whilst basking under the sun.


Photo props were provided for us to take fun shots for our family. We only had one hammock, luckily mom-me remembered to bring extra picnic mat so I was saved from having to play a referee from the kids fighting over a good spot to play. I got them to take turns calling the hammock their territory and declare, do not disturb. How clever can a mom be? Haha!


Of course, our family fun day out wouldn't be complete without my husband and I stealing some couple time! Hubby and I drink coconut water almost every day so imagine our delight drinking free flow of Yeo's 100% Natural Coconut Water! We've tried it before and love its natural and refreshing taste. Definite no sugar added, you only savour the natural sweetness of a fresh coconut water. We have yet to convince the kids to follow our suit but we will get there in time. The secret to convincing the kids enjoy a healthy drink or food (particularly vegetables and fruits) we love is to just keep letting them try.


We played games and won prizes (will share photos of us playing after downloading from hubby's phone), ate delicious and freshly grilled satay dipped with Yeo's very own delectable satay sauce, and lazed around so we could catch the beautiful sunset.


Thank you Yeo's Natural for the lovely and fun-filled Hammock Day Out. Our family made more precious memories to add in the first pages of our 2017. To God be the Glory!

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A photo posted by 🇵🇭Family & Lifestyle Blogger🇸🇬 (@sweetmemoirs) on

About Yeo's 100% Natural Coconut Water:
Yeo’s 100% Coconut Water is not made from concentrate, but packed straight off from carefully selected picked Thai coconut. It contains natural minerals and electrolytes like potassium, calcium and magnesium, making it a natural choice to rehydrate after a workout. What is even more enticing about the drink is that it is naturally fat free, cholesterol free and with no sugar added, the drink is low in calories too. Bursting with the fresh taste of Thai coconut water, you can now enjoy this delicious beverage anytime, anywhere. Perfect for the health conscious, Yeo’s 100% Coconut Water is approved with Health Promotion Board Healthier Choice endorsement. 4 Yeo’s 100% Coconut Water is available island-wide at all convenience stores, supermarket chains, petrol kiosks and major minimarts from May 2016.
Available in a convenient 330ml for $2.00 and 1L family pack for $4.20.
For more information on Yeo’s 100% Coconut Water, like Yeo’s Natural on Facebook
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Fruit Juice: Benefits to the Body

We have the habit of consuming aerated beverages along with our food. This can cause a huge buildup of sugar in the body. The best alternative to aerated drinks is fresh fruit juice. We place great emphasis on the world ‘fresh’. This is because you get the processed and canned fruit juices in the market as well. They are simply as good as or as bad as the aerated drinks are.


Processed fruit juices have a high content of sugar as well. Therefore, one should consume as many quantities of fresh fruit juice as possible. Fresh fruit juice has its own advantage over the processed and canned juices. We shall learn the benefits of fresh fruit juices in general without concentrating on any one fruit during the course of this article.

Immunity boost:
Usually, all fruit juices contain a high proportion of Vitamin C. This Vitamin C is the primary antioxidant in our body. They help to fight off the free radicals and thereby boost the immune system of our body.

Detoxification:
One can also find abundant quantities of Vitamin A in addition to the Vitamin C content. Hence, you can infer that the fruit juices have detoxifying properties. Vitamin A is very good for the eyes. Hence, consuming a regular dose of fruit juice enhances your eyesight.

Improve circulation:
Fruit juices have a high content of folate. This entails that they have good quantities of Vitamin Bg in them. The main function of this vitamin is building the DNA. The folate content also keeps the cells safe from mutation. Folate has another important function as well. They are instrumental in the building of new red blood cells. This ensures that every part of the body gets its regular supply of oxygenated blood.

Anti-inflammatory properties:
Whenever we speak of fruit juices, citrus fruit juices are some of the first juices that come to mind. Citrus juices have great anti-inflammatory properties. Consumption of high sugar foods and meat can cause inflammation of body parts. They can also develop the resistance to insulin making the body prone to diabetic attacks. The citrus juices reduce the inflammation and thus protect the heart and the liver in an indirect fashion.

You have seen four benefits of fruit juices. However, one should understand that the whole fruit always has a higher amount of fiber than the juices. 

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Spreading Love & Joy with Floral Garage Singapore


Are you familiar with the well-known hashtag #ihaveathingwithflowers on Instagram? Well, I certainly do! I have always been drawn to fresh and pretty flowers to the point that I started making it as my main subject in my amateur photography few years ago. 

I used to have a photo blog where I post my flower photo collection. I even went on properly naming all the flowers that I photograph by self-studying floral nomenclature in the internet. In fact, you may still find some of it here as I find it a complete waste to delete all when I turned my photo blog into a family and lifestyle blog that it is today.

Moving forward, I don't shoot flowers using my digital SLR camera (a.k.a. big cam) that often anymore. After G was born, I stopped pursuing my flower photography seriously. Even though I've been told many times that I have a photographer's eye, I belong to those who own digital SLR but never really used it properly like a pro. I have come into a conclusion that I am just a photo hobbyist and not a photographer.

All thanks to the amazing Instagram community, I still get to showcase some of my flower snaps from my archive. I post randomly when my feed is in dire need of happy vibes and use the hashtag #ihaveathingwithflowers. I also love sharing the flower bouquets I received from my hubby occasionally with the same intention. 


That must be how Floral Garage Singapore noticed my penchant for flowers. Two days before the New Year's Eve, they sent me the prettiest floral box ever gifted to me in my entire life. With the purposeful intention of spreading love and joy through flowers, I was very grateful for their thoughtfulness. It may be a coincidence but my flower box was in round shape, it came just in time to usher the new year with all things round and beautiful for abundance and prosperity.



To show you how many people appreciate the beauty of flowers, I am sharing this snapshot I shared over at Instagram.


Chinese New Year and St. Valentine's Day are just around the corner. Let's spread joy and happiness by gifting our love ones well thought gifts they will love and appreciate. Floral Garage Singapore doesn't specialized mainly on flower bouquets and flower boxes, they also have gift hampers and party supplies for all occasions.

FLORAL GARAGE SINGAPORE
Facebook: FloralGarageSG
Instagram: @floralgaragesg

*The colour of the flower varies in different shots due to different source of light and its intensity during the shoot. 
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