Thursday, February 13, 2014

beginning of 2014

It's time to move on to 2014! Here are some miscellaneous pics from my phone...

On the first day of the year, we attended the wedding of our second cousins from New Zealand! Both siblings got married around the same time and the wedding reception held here was a joint one. Here's Dad with the family elders on Mum's side of the family.

Another one with relatives and the archbishop emeritus. Mum's cousin is Bishop Dominic Su, so quite a few religious brothers and sisters attended. Cousins Marie and Bartholomew who got married are Bishop Dominic's niece and nephew.

The little boy so hungry after the first day of school, he was eating rice with one hand and holding cake with the other!!

This is what happens when you ban the iPad and tv. They actually read!! *gasp*

Goofing about during squash lesson....

 Bishop and his brother, also a geriatrician like Big Sis, albeit a retired one, from Canada, came to Dad's house for dinner.

Met up with old school pals at our regular ice-cream spot, Cloud 99.

The girls started their ballet lessons again after a long break.

Baking Chinese New Year cookies. Home-made is always the best!

 The boys hanging out with Grandpa.

 Dad at Genting Highlands; pit stop before heading to Penang for a Lions conference.

Lions conference in Penang.

Mutant monster jackfruit from Dad's garden! It was so heavy it began to split, so they had to cut it down and use a trolley to move it!!

Brought the kids to watch a spectacular ballet performance; "Life in the Jungle". It was held at the old Dewan Undangan Negeri building. The location was not very good, as the floor was not graduated, so we didn't have a good view. We went to the back and stood throughout the performance. It was however an excellent production, involving Layna ballet academy, the Sarawak Symphony Orchestra and the Batu Lintang College Choir.

Boys being boys...

My Zumba buddies and our amazing instructor! Had to Zumba every day before the eating spree come Chinese New Year!!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Christmas in Indonesia


Hubby and SIL both missed Christmas 2013 at home. They were both in Indonesia, but in different parts. SIL went to Bali for a diving adventure with her buddy. Hubby and partner went to Bintuni for a business 'reconnaissance' trip. Bintuni is really far and remote, so he had to take 3 flights to get there, via Jakarta, followed by boat and motorbike!

cheap seafood at Sorong

A really small plane!

Bintuni airport

One of the stops before Bintuni is a coastal town called Sorong. We found out that it is actually the gateway to Raja Ampat! In case you don't know, Raja Ampat is the holy grail of scuba diving! So since Hubby had to miss Christmas at home for this trip he figured he might as well make the most of it and try to squeeze in some diving on the way back!

Sorong- gateway to Raja Ampat

Since it was a last minute thing, all the resorts were fully booked and they ended up staying at a home-stay kind of place. The food served was miserable and the ceilings leaked onto the dusty netting above the bed. To get to the better diving sites, you had to take a boat out to the islands. A trip which took about an hour. They didn't have the luxury of time, so they just dived around Sorong. To really enjoy the best dive spots of Raja Ampat, the best way is to liveaboard, i.e.: live on a boat that brings you around to all the remote dive sites.

the home-stay

leaky ceiling

not a happy sight for the hungry diver!

Hubby was not too enthusiastic about the diving, maybe because he was missing Christmas at home and the home-stay place left much to be desired. We have also been spoiled by amazing diving experiences in Manado, Sipadan and the Maldives, so admittedly, the bar has been set rather high!

with dive buddies and dive masters

However the pictures look great to me! White sand beaches and crystal clear waters. They saw many things too like manta rays, reef sharks, different types of nudibranches and even pygmy seahorses! I would prefer a resort to home-stay anytime though! Hehehe... I'm definitely not the backpacker kinda girl! :)

So here are some of the pics. Hubby brought the smaller camera, without a  strobe, so the picture quality isn't too great.

manta rays

black tip reef shark

crocodile fish


Hubby's Christmas eve turkey substitute!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Christmas 2013 - New Year 2014

Wow! It's been super busy and fun this past 2 months!! I've gotta catch up on the back log of events!

So Christmas holidays were a blast! The cousins from Singapore and Miri came back and it was the usual year-end havoc! Kids everywhere and a whirlwind of non-stop activities!

I don't know where to start, so I'll let the pictures do the talking...

 First up was Christmas carolling at Ee Poh's coffee shop! They sang all the fun songs since there were so many kids!

 Dad rushed to another Christmas party after that. One organized by The Lions Club for their various charities.

While I was busy with my Merdeka Band reunion, the kids followed Kung Kung to the church at Tebedu to distribute the gifts and food that they packed.


 Here are the kids and Kung Kung at yet another Christmas party, this time at Home of Peace, the old folks home at 10th mile.

We also cooked some 'balls' (tang yuen) for the winter solstice festival. I remember mum used to say you have to eat the same number of balls as your age! It signifies growing a year older or something like that! I think next year I should eat 21 then! lol!

Next up was Christmas carolling at Dad's house. We had the usual group from Holy Trinity Church.

Before we knew it, it was already Christmas Eve! Time sure flies when you're having fun! It was time for our annual Christmas eve dinner. Christmas Eve was mum and dad's (Kung kung Titus and Agnes Popo) anniversary, and mum is always sorely missed during this time of the year.

My bacon wrapped turkey was a little burnt, but yummy nonetheless!!

Dig in! All home-cooked dishes.... Ever since we heard from Sis no.2 the story about the pak lo duck ordered from a famous shop that was full of maggots, we try to cook our own food whenever possible!!

The main event: opening Christmas presents!! Solomon had been asking me everyday for more than a week, when we were going to open them!


Uncle Polycarp bought a putting mat for Kung Kung.

The kids were more excited than him!

 On Christmas day, Dad invited the old folks from Home of Peace and members of the Society for the Deaf over to the house for lunch.

 The kids sang Christmas carols and Cousin Alaena performed two of her rhythmic gymnastic routines for them. She was very confident and so graceful!

In return, the members of the Society for the Deaf performed a line dance number for us. Even though they cannot hear the music, they managed to do just fine with the help of a couple of leaders who were not hearing impaired.

 Modelling another set of matchy matchy t-shirts! Teeheehee...

Christmas Day dinner was at Kung Kung Paul's house. Yes, more food!!

 Then of course, it was more presents!!

 The next day, Boxing day, it was dinner at Sis No.2's house, followed by even more presents!!

Hubby came back from Indonesia at midnight on Boxing day (yup, he and SIL both missed Christmas at home. Both were in different parts of Indonesia). So we saved some presents at home to open with Daddy the day after Boxing day! That means the kids had presents to open over 4 days!!

 Another Christmas dinner that night, at Taiku's house! Look at the gorgeous turkey Uncle Dylan roasted!

Of course there were gifts to give out!!!

 Eva playing with her Play Doh set; one of  their many presents!

 Laksa at Mei Mei is a must, for Sis No.4, before leaving for the airport!

Creating a ruckus at the airport as usual!!

Look at Adam hanging on Uncle Richard's leg!


 We went bowling at Crystal Bowl. We like it there because at the last two lanes, there are railings that can be pulled up so that the balls cannot go into the gutter!

There was even karaoke! Though all the songs were pretty outdated!

... and Play Station to entertain the wee ones.

Before we knew it, everyone had left for home and we welcomed the new year! Here we went to the arcade at City One for a bit more fun before school began the next day!

I managed to squeeze in some doctor's appointments. Claire and Annie had their eyesight checked. Claire saw a skin specialist for the wart on her foot. Eva went for a hearing test. She's always ignoring me when I call and since her hearing test came out normal, I know it's not a hearing problem but selective hearing!

Well anyway, that was it, the end of 2013! Here's to another busy year ahead, filled with joy and love!!!
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