Pre-Holiday Stress

After so many years planning for family holiday, I must admit that this round is the most stressful. Reason being that we are travelling on ID/FOC Ticket. We thought that May is non peak season, should not be an issue getting on board. But as the date come nearer, I start to have doubts since the number of seats is getting less and less.

For this reason, I’ve had sleepless nights for the past week. I even had dreams of us not getting on board, and ended up in London .

As we are travelling on ID/FOC ticket, and seats are not firm until 1 hour before the gate close, we couldn’t book our accommodation. I’ve only managed to shortlist those Airbnb within our budget, in preparation of booking them once we can get on board. Luckily, for transportation, I made a call to the car rental company and made the booking with some pre-arrangements which didn’t require any payment. Due to our travel arrangement, I also couldn’t pre-book any tours/performance that we want to go. I’m praying hard that tickets are still available when we are ready to make the bookings.

New Zealand is our 1st option, thinking that the flight won’t be full since it’s not China Holiday or Hong Kong Holiday. But it seems that everyone is interested to go New Zealand in May . As backup plan, we even had Plan B, that is to go Osaka, since there’s 3 flights a day to Osaka, so chances of getting on board is better.

As a result of Plan B, I also had to make itinerary plans for Osaka, in case we go Osaka instead of New Zealand.

I’ve finally finished both the Plans, now I’m working on shortlisting Osaka & Kyoto accommodation .

Next have to change currency for both countries, and also get ready simcard (docomo) if we going to Japan instead of New Zealand.

I hope I won’t be so stress the next time I plan for family holiday.

In Between Travels

Been busy lately, did a bit of travelling for the past 2 weeks, plus hosting Photography Meetups.

We went for a short trip in Okinawa, from 4-7 March. This is not the first time we go Okinawa, but rather covering the parts which I didn’t go previously. This time, we went with Jimm & Anna’s family, church friends.

We had so much fun eating & venturing Okinawa. Faythe & Vyktore even brought along UNO and we had quite a few games of UNO during idle time.

Earlier this week, Hon & myself made a trip to Shenzhen, for acupuncture, shopping & eating. Shenzhen is a shopping heaven for us because it has our favourite sports outlet, Decathlon. Time to get some new gym wear to replace the old ones .  This the first time Kat go to Decathlon, she also had a great time shopping at Decathlon.

Prior to that, we paid the acupuncture Sifu to torture us. I’ve been having this naggy pain behind my right knee for months. After the previous round of massage in Nov with Loong Sifu, it went off for a while, and then came back again. No amount of stretching and resting helped fix the situation. Kat recommended us to go to her acupuncturist in Shenzhen. After 15 minutes of needles poking, it was such a relieve that I could now bend my knees without much pain. Apparently there’s some blood clog at that area. I still need to go back for 1 round of acupuncture to get it fixed entirely. Meanwhile, Hon got his feet acupuncture due to numbness. He complain he couldn’t feel anything at all. Probably dead nerves? He was screaming like hell when the needles were poked through his feet. But after that, he was glad that the numbness is gone. He too need to go back for another round of acupuncture.

We had a great lunch & dinner at Shenzhen, eating at our favourite restaurant, Grandma’s Home.

We will be travelling again next weekend, not sure yet where to, but March is surely a busy month.

Adjusting to Stay-At-Home-Mom Lifestyle

It’s been 6 months & 12 days I have left my previous job. I had a hard time settling into a proper schedule for the 1st few months due to all the changes in the family (outgoing maid, Christmas, travelling, Chinese New Year and more travelling). I came to realise that I needed a schedule for myself to work on so that I can manage things better.

I wanted to do meal planning on a weekly basis, but after trying for a week, I gave up. Too much planning, I kid you not! Fast forward to today, I’m glad that I’ve got my SAHM lifestyle pretty settle down and things are rolling smoothly.

My Fitness Plans

When I started the year, I target to go to gym or workout at least 3 times a week to shed some kilos and loose a couple of inches (I’ve gained 10kg the past 1 year…OMG). But only making 3 days effort doesn’t seem to flourish into anything except the urge of eating more LOL. A friend introduced me to an app call MyFitnessPal, which helps to track your food intake, exercise, and weight gain/lost. I started using this app late January, and it made me realise that if I don’t go exercise, I am confined with just eating 1200 cals per day. This is somewhat a problem for someone like me who enjoys food. Hence I started to resume my kickboxing class, alternating with gym session, but Saturday and Sunday is no exercise day. Then CNY and some travelling with friends kick in and it all went hair-wired (more eating, not much of exercise LOL). I came back to HK on 21st March, weighing 2kg more!!! Dang!!!

I decided that my workout plans are screwed entirely and I need to be more discipline (for food and workout). I started using the MyFitnessPal App extensively, tracking all the food I eat everyday and became more cautious with my daily food intake. I also use Record App to have a more accurate recording of my workout sessions, which syncs its data to MyFitnessPal (same company). I ensure that I go to gym everyday (including weekends), except on day I go kickboxing, then I’ll take a break from gym. And lastly, Zumba class, 4 times a week. I pushed for the first 21 days really hard, because apparently, once you start an activity and maintain it for 21 days, it becomes a routine in your life. I passed the 21 days, but going into 2nd month, it seems even harder than the 21 days itself. Struggle, but I told myself, the changes will come. Gotta be patient and continue workout. I started loosing my 1st 1kg end of March, which help motivated myself.

Fast forward to today, I’ve lost about 3.5kg, but since I’ve gain 2kg during CNY, it’s just 1.5kg I’ve lost from where I started. A lot of handwork and hours of sweat. Control my food intake (but still giving myself some treats once in a while) and I’m happy that I’ve reduced by 1 size. I still have a whooping 7kg to loose…so the journey hasn’t ended. But I’m penning this down so that I can remember it later down the line.

My workout activities for a week:

Mon – Thu: 45 mins in gym in the morning (30 mins on the cross trainer, 15 mins for abs & legs workout – my problem areas) 

Mon – Thu: 60 mins in Zumba class in the evening (this is killer, but I totally love the sweat)

Fri: 120 mins kickboxing (this is another killer, but heck, gotta kick some asses)

Sat – Sun: same as Mon – Thu activities but I tend to cut it short to just 30 minutes sometimes due to weekend activities with Church and Family

I skip gym sessions when I have errands to run, e.g. marketing, school field trips, but I figure that doing these activities (walking) will also account for my daily exercise that I need to do, so it’s totally fine to skip gym session.

My Time in Kitchen

Now that I have my workout in place, I needed to plan my time in the kitchen as well. Life as SAHM is not easy life. No maid (just part time maid to help cleaning) means that I have to get up as early as 6:15AM to prepare kids lunch, wake the kids up, do all the marketing, cooking and whatever that the part time maid doesn’t do. And since I go for Zumba in the evening, I have to workout some meals that I can prepare earlier before my Zumba class that I can just quickly cook or heat up for dinner after Zumba class. The timing for Zumba class is not ideal (6-7pm), but it’s a FOC class, so it’s worth all these planning LOL. Not working mah, so gotta look for FOC/cheap alternative instead of spending more money right.

For lunch, I usually combine with breakfast since I only eat after I go gym, about 10AM. I will try take something heavy, sometimes I’ll eat with hubby outside, other times if there’s extra food from the kids lunch, I’ll just eat them. No additional cooking needed and keep it simple.

For dinner, I usually stick to soup with a steam fish since we have the tier-steamer, it’s very convenient. Soup boiling at the bottom, steam your food on top. Then a stir fry vegetables for the complete meal. Hon wants to cut down on rice as well at night, so sometimes we will just eat the dishes. If kids request for noodles or rice, I’ll just prepare for them. On other days, I’d prepare stews or casserole kinda food, which I start doing all the chopping and cooking at 2/3PM, and have it all done by 5PM. After Zumba class, just reheat and we have our dinner served. On Fridays, where I only go for kick boxing, I’ll cook something more elaborate since I have more time in the evening. Weekends are usually lazy day in kitchen, we either eat out or cook whatever I can dig out of the fridge.

I’m getting more skillful in the kitchen (AHEM) and challenge myself with more variety of dishes for the family. Photos can be viewed on my instagram account, jazzmint. I crawl the internet for new recipes and I use an app call PepperPlate to store all my favourite & tested recipes. It’s so easy with this App, so I don’t have to go to my bookmarks when I need to cook. Yes, I admit that I’m not a born Nigella Lawson. I’m never good with cooking and I’m still improvising them as we speak here. Having recipes as a guideline is really a beauty. If I need my food to be more flavourful I can also adjust the ingredients accordingly.

Needless to say, with all these cooking going on, there’s also a lot other activities happening in the kitchen, such as clearing of all the expired/old food and rearranging of things in kitchen. I wasn’t very happy with my previous maid. Not only she’s a lousy cook, but she’s probably the worst person when comes to keeping track of inventory in the kitchen. I found so many repeated food stuff stored in different containers in different parts of my kitchen. Frustrating is the word. But as of today, I’ve somehow sorted out 80% of the entire kitchen. I’ve cleared up plenty of rubbish in the kitchen and have an inventory of what’s in the kitchen at the back of my mind. I’ve rearranged the kitchen cabinets the way I like it (more organised) so I can find things easily. I’m still working on the kitchen drawers rearrangement, but I’m slowly loving my kitchen now :).

I’ve also started to explore new wet market in HK, because the one nearest to our home is very expensive. Just this week, I went to Tsuen Wan Wet Market and was delighted with the range of stuff available there, not forgetting cheaper groceries as well. I usually do marketing every 2 weeks, but since I discover this new market, I now want to go there every week instead.

Some before and after photos here as a record.

My Time with Faythe & Vyktore

Both of them are no longer toddlers, and they spend half the time in school. They leave as early as 7:10AM and comes home by 3:30PM/4:30PM depending on whether there’s ECA (Extra Curricular Activity) or not. They are both very happy to come home having Mommy to greet them nowadays. I ensure they shower and change into fresh clothing once they come home. Those days when I’m still at work, they won’t shower till when it’s near dinner time (roll eyes). I’ll also check if they need help with homework or not and we will do the homework usually before I go for Zumba classes. At times when they needed more homework attention, we will get to it after dinner. During exam month, they will have to work on worksheets after they finish their homework. Yes, I’m a 1/2 tiger mom LOL. Must have balance of work and play right.

Sometimes, I’ll also prepare some light snacks for tea time for them when I’m not lazy LOL.

On nights where we finish dinner early, we spend time together. We will chit chat and tell jokes. I enjoy listening to all their crazy ideas. We also play games. I’ve recently started teaching them Bahasa, once a week. They seems to enjoy it so far.

I’ll tug them into bed (no bedtime story since they can now read themselves, just hugs and kisses) by 10PM.

Weekends, we will usually chill out at home or go to town if we feel like it.

My Time with My Other Half

Now that I’m not working, he doesn’t have any reason to get upset that I’m back home late LOL. We get to spend time going lunch dates as well, which is great to improve our relationship. But on the downside of it, because I’m around at home, I seem to be more busy when he’s around as I need to cook breakfast for him, cook lunch for him, fix his laptop, fix his printout…Now he’s doing his promotion course for his work, I’m also helping him up, like a pilot side-kick *sweat*

My Time for Myself

I have plenty of time for myself, now that I’m no longer working. I must admit that at times, I’m like driving an F1 car. I’ll be going to gym, rushing back to cook, go Zumba, work on photobook and so on. But sometimes, I’m just so slacking I can sit there for hours playing my Candy Crush, Soda Crush, Farm Hero and what have you. Bad and addictive. Trying hard to control myself, but when I get hold of my iPad, it just comes so naturally LOL. Which is why I’m choosing to update my blog today, cause I’ve done my rounds of games hahaha…I hope I can be better at controlling myself in another 6 months time.

I still have plenty of backlogs photos that I need to touch up. Not forgetting the phonebooks that I need to work on. So far I’ve only completed 3 books this year.

OK, I’m gonna leave this blog space now, after all the reflection of my past 6 months achievements and bloopers. I need to work harder to update the blog instead of crushing games :).

Black & White Photography, 31 Oct 2015

Backdated post. 

Since I resigned, I try to ensure that I don’t work on weekends so that I can start adjust to my jobless life. I also start to fill my weekend with personal activities. Hence I join another photography meetup activity on 31st Oct. The theme is black & white photography. It seems easy topic, but the selected location is challenging. It’s Shum Shui Po. In such a busy area, how can we shoot something black & white that requires very distinct outline and contrast to give the effect of black & white. To make it even more difficult, it’s a night shoot (low light!!!).

Seriously, after walking for the first 10-15 minutes, I was struggling to capture shots because it was more colourful than black & white itself. I also try not to limit myself to jut portrait shots, but more to capturing the scene, surroundings & other things that might catch my attention.

We try to steer clear of the busy area and headed to Shek Kip Mei side to get better shots. I like how we are confined to shoot within a certain topic so that we don’t go click-crazy on the camera. I only manage to take about 30 shots or so, of which I’ve only shortlisted a few which I really like.

Here are my Black & White Night Shots for the day.

Backline of Shum Shui Po…like the effect of the stairs stacked up.

A lady packing up carton boxes in the dark alley.

A fruit stall with busy customers picking up fruits.

Fruit stall owner.

I took this shot because of the distinct shapes of the wine bottles vs. the crowd.

Lady at the vegetable stall packing some vegetables for the customer. This shot was taken at the Shum Shui Po Wet Market.

A quiet street.

Another quiet street, away from the hustle bustle of the heart of Shum Shui Po.

Pedestrians busy crossing the street during the red light.

A team of young kids playing soccer at the local housing area of Shek Kip Mei.

Contemplative Photography, 17 Oct 2015

Living in HK and having a hectic work life means that I have little chance to meet other people apart from my colleague’s, hon’s colleagues & my kids. I have always wanted to know more like minded people that has interest in photography. Hence I’ve joined a Meetup Photography Group. Only until yesterday I manage to join the 1st outing organised by this Meetup Group.

The topic of the day was Contemplative Photography. A very interesting topic focusing on things that people rarely pay attention.

We all met at Sai Ying Pun MTR Station at 3PM, then started the Photowalk thereafter, exploring some very interesting streets in Hong Kong. I was in awe, mainly because I rarely venture to this part of Hong Kong (shame on me). The entire walk took us about 2 hours and we ended walking the trails along Hollywood Road and Lan Kwai Fong.

Most of us made it to Insomnia Bar at LKF for a quick drink and viewing of each others photos. It was definitely a good outing. I got to know some cool people, made a couple of new friends and exchange some numbers. We were also made to post 5 of our photos to the Meetup Group for feedback.

Here are some of my favourite for the day.

A mermaid having a taco wall grafitti

Old style lift buttons that caught my attention

A dysfunctional fan outside a balcony of a flat

Playing with shadow

Lines perspective from an opened window

A sneak peak into an empty shop house

A lonely bird sitting on the TV Aerial

This graffiti certainly caught all of our attention

came across some shops selling Chinese Burning Stuff and couldn’t help to take photos of these lovely folded Hell Bank notes.

More lines from the Chinese Burning Stuff Shop.

A cat dwelling in its dream.

A taxi driver taking time off by the road side to clean up his taxi.

Patterns spotted on a wall, which I cropped it

Of round, rectangular and tall plants.

June – Sep 2014

OMG, I’ve not updated my blog for more than a year. Clearing cob webs all over the place. Life had gotten too busy in the past 1 year. A couple of overseas trips, crazy workload and growing kids. That’s what kept me busy for the past 1 year.

I actually drafted this post last year, but totally forgot to publish it on the blog.

Here’s a quick flash back of what we were up to from Jun – Sep 2014.

In June 2014

After 2 of my projects go-live, I took 8 days off work and brave myself to bring Faythe and Vyktore to Tokyo. Yes you hear me correct, just the 3 of us. Prior to that I spent my weekends planning for the trip with both of them to ensure we cover as much as we could during our stay in Tokyo.

Happiness on their faces upon arriving in Tokyo.

We went to Ghibli Studio, Harajuku. Spent 3 Days in Disneysea & Disneyland (12 hours everyday). We also made a trip over to Odaiba to visit the Trick Art Museum where the kids had plenty of fun. Then we took a long trip to Hakkeijima to view some sea creatures and catch some fishes before heading to Yokohama to visit 2 Museums (Ramen Museum, Cup Noodles Museum). We had great fun and was totally max out by the time we return to HK before continue slaving myself at work.

Here are some photos taken from our trip.

Us in Disney Sea. We enjoyed the weather and all the rides.

DIsney Sea Performance during the day. The parade was performed on the Lake. We were so impressed with the performance.

Our favourite ride, Toy Story Mania. We went for the ride for both the nights.

The night time performance and fireworks is Amazing as well at Disney Sea.

Faythe & myself.

The Disneyland Castle lighted up at night. They were telling all the princess story with all the different lighting.

Alice in Wonderland projected over the castle. Love Love Love the performance.

Oh and Rapunzel Story portrayed on the Disneyland Castle.

The rainy weather never did dampen our Spirit in enjoying the Disneyland & Disney Sea.

We spent 1/2 day in Odaiba to visit Lady of Liberty. I love the the view of Lady Liberty, with the Rainbow Bridge behind her.

Here’s Vyktore pretending to be attacked by Shark. One of the reason we went to Odaiba is to visit the 3D Art Museum.

Faythe being attacked by a giant spider at the 3D Art Museum.

Hakkeijima trip was all for Vyktore, the animal lover. Various sea creatures, giant moon fish and whale shark. It was a very far trip, further to Yokohama.

The kids amazed with the tall fish tank and fish swimming in it.

Faythe had fun catching fishes at Hakkejima. The fish we caught were fried on the spot and we ate all of it.

After Hakkeijma, we went back to Yokohama for the Ramen Museum. This is a place where they have various Ramen served in different ways. We went to 3 different shops to try 3 Ramen and we all LOVE it.

On the last day in Tokyo, we went to Yokohama again to spend our time at the Cup Noodles Museum.

Various different type of cup noodles on display in the Museum. We also participated in decorating & selecting our cup noodle. Faythe was so delighted and thankful because we purposely went back to Yokohama just for the Cup Noodle Museum.

Our last lunch in Tokyo. Tasty Pork Cutlet served with Japanese Curry. The Pork Cutlet was crunchy on the outside, but the pork meat was juicy and succulent on the inside. Never had I tasted such yummy Pork Cutlet.

In July 2014

We went to stay a night at Macau and dine with Kungfu Panda and his clans. Then we visited the notable Transformer Exhibition which was a huge let down.

Us having breakfast with King Julian of Madagascar. The food served were mediocre, it was just the cartoon characters which were good.

Kids showing their excitement before going in to see the Transformer Exhibition.

Bumble Bee.

In Aug 2014

Elephants from Elephant Parade finally landed in HK and it was great that Citygate was one of the few locations where they place the Elephants.

Faythe picking the nose of the Dragon on the Elephant.

Myself with the Blue Elephant. Photo taken by Faythe.

Vyktore with his anxious face, taking photo with the Mahjong Elephant. This is so Hong Kong.

This is his Favouriter. Turquoise Elephant with the Dragon on it.

Then I brought the kids to work at HP Office to participate in the Annual Bring Your Children to Work Day. Kids had fun using Lync Conference and playing games. We also took the opportunity to take photos of more Elephants that was up for display at City Plaza.

Future HP Lady CEO, Faythe Hon.

Future HP CIO, Vyktore Hon.

All the kids listening to the briefing before the games start.

Kids, in meeting room. We did Lync Conference with other teams. Kids were all excited experiencing the technology they’ve never been exposed before.

Look we found the Orange Elephant in CP1, HP office.

Goldfish Elephant at display at CP1, HP Office. This is by far my favourite.

Souvenirs from HP, personalized photo frame.

In Sep 2014

Summer Holiday is over and kids are back to school. They went back to KL for a short holiday prior to that. We spend our weekends making Gummy Sushi and Gummies they bought from KL.

Gummies made by Faythe.

Sushi anyone? These are too sweet to my liking.

Faythe enjoying her gummy creation.

I also sign up for 2 baking classes with the kids. Learned to make Serradura & Brownies.

Reading instructions to make Serradura.

Enjoying all the biscuit crumbs leftover.

Faythe “curi makan” while waiting for the brownies to be ready.

Then we spent a night camping (the 1st time for the entire family) and star gazing at Pui O.

Beautiful sky at Pui O.

Gazing at stars and took this lovely shot.

Kids enjoying the hammock we setup by the beach.

Getting ready to go to bed. They are all very happy being the 1st time camping.

Early morning at Pui O.

This was where we camped last night.

Vyktore enjoying the hammock. He hates the sand so much he refused to get off.

A small crab by the beach.

What an exhaustive 4 months. I started off 2 new projects in July when I came back from Tokyo. AD & Exchange Migration Project. Very complex in an ageing environment, and I see that this is the “project” that will bring my career to greater heights.

I’ve been catching up with my Photobook Project. I completed Year 2008 Photobook and got it printed before the end of Year 2014. I have also completed Year 2009 Photobook and recently got them printed as well.

OK, lets hope I’ll squeeze some time to write about the past 8 months of 2015 in the next post.

Vyktore: The PvZ Addict

More about games we play at home. Plants vs. Zombies were introduced by Hon few years back. He was totally addicted to it. I didn’t like the game at first, but soon got addicted to it. It’s a very popular game since few years ago and recently they came up with Plants vs. Zombies 2.

When we first played PvZ, Faythe and Vyktore were very afraid. Afraid that the Zombies might jump out of the iPad/iPhone haha..Each time I play, they’ll sit quietly next to me to watch. But when I pass to them to play, 90% of the time they will refuse. Particularly Vyktore, the scary cat.

Look at him, concentrating fully and so serious hahaha…my boy has definitely grown up alot.

But he has outgrown that stage, he’s not a PvZ addict LOL. He spends his free time figuring out the power of each plants, the nature of the Zombies and tries the most difficult stage, fighting against Dr. Zomboss.

Personally, I feel that PvZ 1 was much more challenging to play as compared to PvZ 2. There were some stages which I was stuck like forever and took so long to pass it.

I also miss some of the plants they featured in PvZ 1, but no longer available in PvZ 2, e.g. the smelly garlic.

Hiking to Wong Lung Hang (黄龍坑道) – 6 May 2014

Before the weather gets too warm and start of summer, church friends organized another hike at Lantau Island. We were not told that it’s a rock/stream hiking trail. Only saw some beautiful photos on some blogs. Hence I packed my camera to ensure I snap some good photos.

Around 15 odd of us met the petrol station across across North Lantau Hospital. I decided to warm up and walked to the petrol station with a Katherine while the kids followed Hon and went there via public transport. Soon, everyone started arrive and we started our hike.

For the first 30mins, it was pretty easy walk along the road. Then we entered the Wong Lung Hang Picnic Site, and thereafter that’s where the torture begins (*.*).

Sharon told us that she hiked before and we need to be prepared to get ourselves wet as there are some parts of the hike we need to go in to the stream. *Gulp*. My biggest worry was not my kids of course. But instead of DSLR which I can’t get it wet.

As we go deeper into the stream and forest, the hike gets more tricky. At some point, you need to stand and plan your route to ensure that you walk through shallow part of the stream. While I struggle to hike up to the waterfall, both Faythe & Vyktore were doing fine. They were so fast and I soon lose sight of them.

In fact, I was the last arriving at the base of the waterfall. Of course the scenery was awesome and was worth the 3 hours climb!!!

The water was so clean and cold. Even the kids who wanted to swim earlier pulled back. We took our break and ate all the food we brought up since we’ve burned all our energy on our way up LOL.

After rest for a while and take some photos, we make our way down. Gosh, going down was much worse. This is because most part of the stream were covered with rocks and you can barely see what’s lying over the rock in front of you. Me being me, keep on worried about my camera getting wet.

This part is like a mini spa. It’s near the main waterfall, but a secluded spot where you can sit down and let the water gush down your shoulder after a tiring hike :).

In the end, we took about 4 hours to finally reach the base. There were only 4 of us left. Hon, myself, Vyktore and Pastor Kevin. Gosh, my legs start to ache as we inch our way to have a quick bite where a few others waited for us there.

To take it further, we walked home after our tea. By the time we arrived home, I could feel the legs aching much more. Kids being kids felt nothing. They were still jumping around after taking their shower. But soon, fell asleep by 8PM.

I fell asleep by 10PM and the next day I woke up and try to remember what happened. I felt as though I was beaten up hahhahaha…

It was a great hike despite all the challenges. It’s worth it definitely. But I’d think twice if you ask me to go again. Definitely not gonna lug the DSLR along :).

Look at the water, so clear, I could see my shoes LOL.

Wish I could swim LOL. This is definitely a rare scenery in HK itself.

Visit to Fanling & Water Baptism – 1 May 2014

What better to do on Public Holiday than to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Wanted to bring the kids out of HK since 1st and 6th was public holiday. But thought it would be crowded, so probably the better option is to stay in HK.

Church organized water baptism on 1st May at a farm in Fanling. Hence we decided to join in the fun. Hon also ordered a roast pig to be shared among fellow church goers. Something that we have not done for years.

Kids were all excited as they went there last year. They were telling me there’s goats, rabbits, fishes, tortoises and even cow there.

Church rented mini bus and we gather at Novotel Citygate at 9AM. Left for Fanling, which took us about 1 hour or so to get there. It was darn far. And it passed by the area at University Station that we went on our Geological Tour few weeks ago.

Everyone was excited about the roast pig and couldn’t resist to take photos with it. And of course savoring the roast pig once it was chopped into tiny little pieces by 2 butchers LOL.

Even bones and all the parts were not spared. All the ladies having a gala time dividing the remaining of the roast pig.

Kimchi fried rice with roast pork LOL. Yes we got creative later on.

We also setup the BBQ pit and even heat up the roast pork on it so that the skin stays crunchy and warm.Of course, after all the pig out session, it was finally water baptism time. There were 5-6 kids/teenager and a few adults to be baptist this round.

It was a great day to spend our Labour Day and weather was great as well, although at times it looks gloomy and about to rain.

We finally left Fanling at about 330PM and arrived at Tung Chung close to 5PM.

Serai. There were plenty in the farm and we helped to get rid of it by hoarding all the serai back. According to the ladies, these are expensive stuff in HK.

Kids surrounding the rabbits cage and trying to disturb them.

What’s everyone looking at? Check out the cow’s butt on the left of the pic LOL.

Kids playing with the water after the water baptism was executed.

Geological Trip at 荔枝莊 & Crooked Island (吉 æ¾³) – 29 Mar 2014

I thought it would be fun to bring the kids to see some volcanic rocks and some remote island for a short getaway within HK. So i purchased some Groupon for a visit to Lai Chi Chong (荔枝莊) and Crooked Island (吉澳).

We headed off from Tung Chung at 645AM as the meeting point was pretty far, at University Station (Hung Hom Line). We arrived there 15mins early, hence I quickly bought some bread, drinks and snacks in case they get hungry between breakfast and lunch.

We waited till 0815AM and finally made the move to the Ma Liu Shui Pier near University Station and boarded the boat. There were 20 odd of us and the day was rather gloomy. Praying hard that it won’t rain, else we will end up sitting in the boat instead.

While we were on our way to 荔枝莊, we saw this huge Kuan Yin Statue. Apparently build by Li Ka Shing and spent millions on it. It took us about 30mins when we  finally arrive at 荔枝莊. We took a walk along the rocky beach side. The tour guide busy yakking and yakking, but we didn’t bother. We took our take taking photos and enjoying those green mossy rocks. The moss were amazing, like carpet!!!

The rocks were awesome too. Volcaniclastic sedimentary rock formed millions of years ago. Research has shown that this region has rather complicated geological setting and rock types, with Mesozoic volcaniclastic sedimentary rocks, tuff, rhyolite and Paleozoic sedimentary rocks occurring locally. The uneven stratum on the foreshore near the Lai Chi Chong pier is volcanic ash sedimentary rock. Displaying very distinctive foldings, faults and bedding structure, it is an ideal location for geological study.

seaweed that looks like zombie brain LOL.

Major outcropped sections of Lai Chi Chong Formation can be found on the beach west of Lai Chi Chong pier. Although less than 200m wide, these sections manifest extremely complicated rock properties that include tuffite ,tuffaceous sandstone, siltstone, coarse ash crystal tuff, eutaxitic fine ash tuff and porphyritic rhyolite in current bedding. Bedding development is excellent with a wealth of visible sedimentary structures, such as current bedding, graded bedding, convolute bedding and subaquatic slump. Signs occurring from folding, fault and discordance of strike directions are also clearly noticeable.

There were a group of students that came by too. Probably geologist students. It’s great stuff since I love Geography and I used to learn about Volcanoes. But just wondering how did these rocks end up in Hong Kong, since it’s not like there’s Volcano here.

There was this part of rocks that was black (like burnt) and it looks as if they were scraped by something. The tour guide called it the the dragon’s mouth or something. It forms a U shape, like the dragon’s mouth.

After finish “cerita” and snapping photos, we head back to the Pier and went to another side of the island, just for a walk. But it started to drizzle, so we all went back to the boat. The boat started to head for 吉 æ¾³ and the rain got heavier. At one point it was so foggy, we couldn’t see those rocks formation that we were supposed to stop by. The tour guide quickly did some shuffling of schedule due to the poor weather condition.

Porridge. Faythe had 2 bowls of porridge. Vyktore opt for Rice instead.

We got off at 吉 æ¾³ and headed to the restaurant for lunch. Nothing to shout about, but nice home cook food. They are known for the handmade cuttlefish ball. So yummy, and was lucky that I could have 2 since Vyktore wasn’t too interested LOL.

After lunch, it was still drizzling a bit but we took our chance and started walking towards the Tin Hau Temple at 吉 澳. It was a short walk and by the time we reach there the rain had stopped.

The tourist did his story telling thing again before we were given opportunity to take some photos around the temple.

On our way out, we stopped by a stall selling some local desserts. For once, I manage to convince my two banana kids to try Chinese Desert. Bought the Loh Mai Chi for them. The ones sold here comes with red bean stuffing apart from the normal peanuts stuffing.

We hang around at the Pier while we wait for everyone to be ready to board the boat. After the rain had stopped, the sky was so clear and what beautiful scenery we witnessed in 吉 æ¾³. You couldn’t imagine that’s HK.

We continue our boat trip to look out for more rock formation since the sky was clear now. And we finally made it to witness the oldest rock formation in Hong Kong. Found around Pak Sha Tau and Wong Chuk Kok Tsui on the northern shore are called Wong Chuk Kok Tsui Formation.

A buddha face.

The rock formation was given all sorts of name due to it’s shape and how it’s formed. Some look pretty obvious by their name. Some you really have to squint your eyes and look at only a particular angle to get the meaning of it.

The monster fist.

The monster face.

Good thing is that we didn’t have to get off and walk. Else the kids might be complaining. They were busy eating the snack i bought and having some self entertainment on the boat.

Right after we finish all the sightseeing, it started pouring again. What a day!!! As it takes about 1.5 hours to get back, we all fell asleep in the boat while it sway along the border of China and back to Ma Liu Shui Pier. Yes we went right up to the China border!!!

We were all so tired, when we arrived at home, we were like jelly. Well, I did enjoy myself, seeing something different. As for the kids, they say no more rocks LOL.