Tuesday, October 17, 2017

D-Link Powerline AV2 1000 Wireless AC1200 Starter Kit

[Product Review]

The positioning of your home router is of paramount importance to ensure good WiFi coverage and we all know it is always good to have it in the centre of the house since its reach is in a 360° radius. However this is not exactly possible due to many reasons, such as your home décor, structural constraints or power point location. For my case, my living room is in a longish configuration but my router is fixed nearest to the door because the fibre line can only terminate at that point unless I fork out extra money to have it lengthened into the living room.

Previously the wife was complaining that the WiFi signal in our room was quite weak and even YouTube streaming was really slow at times. We tried D-Link WiFI Range Extender last year and it did pretty well. This standalone extender works by pulling the WiFi signals from my WiFi router and broadcasting it further at the direction of my choice. It definitely works well if the conditions are good, as my missus do find a slight difference in the strength of the signal within our room, with the door opened or closed.



This time round, we got to try out the D-Link Powerline AV2 1000 Wireless AC1200 which is essentially a set of device that uses your electrical wiring as conduits for your WiFi. Installation is pretty much idiot-proof and took me only a couple of minutes to fix it up. All I needed to do, was to plug the DHP-P610AV into a power point and connect it directly to my router using the Ethernet cable provided, followed by plugging in the DHP-W610AV into any of the power points in the room I want the WiFi to be! Finally I just needed to follow the easy first-time configuration setup in the instruction manual and we were good to go!

The joke when I plugged in the DHP-P610AV was that I was still thinking of where the hell I was supposed to find an additional power point for my other equipments! See, it is has a pass through socket leh! I only needed to connect the Ethernet onto the device.

I only needed a couple of these DHP-W610AV to ensure every room in the house has fast WiFi! Easy right?
I had been using the Powerline for a couple of weeks now and I am truly amazed with the uploading and downloading speeds in my room. I do process quite a lot of photos regularly and rely on cloud storage such as Google Drive and Dropbox so I can firmly say that viewing, uploading and downloading of files in my room had never been faster. This is easily the best solution for bad WiFi coverage at home for us, and requires no extra wiring etc. Its performance surpasses any range extenders because no physical obstruction matters, as long as the area you want covered, has a power point installed. Sometimes I will notice that the speed drops, but that was only because I was still connected to the powerline in the room when I got out of it!

I will be getting the keys to my new house quite soon and initially I was kind of worried of what I needed to do to ensure that my house will have proper WiFi coverage throughout. Now that I have tried and tested the D-Link Powerline, I know for a fact that I need not worry about this anymore and that I can place my router anywhere I want, as long as it is near a power point! Have you been suffering silently from poor WiFi connection within your house, and just been making do with whatever little speed you have in your rooms, or having to move your ass to right beside your router like me at times? Suffer no more, this is all you need and I guarantee it! Thank you so much for sending faster internet speed our way D-Link Singapore!

Friday, October 13, 2017

Forever Crazy by Crazy Horse Paris

[Media Invite]

Besides catching the cabaret show at Neptune Theatre restaurant more than a decade ago, Forever Crazy by Crazy Horse Paris would be the only other burlesque show (featuring topless dancers) that I had the chance to watch. So I was pretty excited when I got the invite and brought my missus along for the opening night here in Singapore!


Of course I was prepared to see boobs, but wasn't THAT prepared to see them so up close and magnified on the big screens by both sides of the performance stage. I personally thought that watching the performance in its entirety from a distance would be classier than viewing blown-up boobs on the screens. Aiyah maybe I too conservative lah.

I thought that the lighting effects were really good and the dance moves were pretty well-choreographed and very well-rehearsed by the dancers. In fact I was trying hard to determine which is the TV screen was showing the live action, and which was showing pre-recording footages by other dancers performing the same routines, other than looking at the boobs.
 

The only male performer really took all of us by surprise with his first act. I was expecting some form of striptease from him, since the women in the audiences were all getting REALLY excited but it ended up becoming a high-energy, scarily entertaining dance number, and one of the highlights of the show.
 
Thank you for having us at this world famous show (and eye-opening performance for me) BASE Entertainment! For all you readers out there, the tickets are going for as low as $35 for students, NSF and the elderly! Just make sure you are above 18 years of age! *Wink

Useful Information

Performance Times (now till 22 Oct 2017):
Wednesday - Thursday: 8pm
Friday: 8pm and 11pm
Saturday: 5pm, 8pm and 11pm
Sunday: 5pm

Ticket Bookings:
Internet - www.MarinaBaySands.com/ticketing or www.sistic.com.sg
Phone - +65 6688 8826
In Person - Marina Bay Sands Box Offices (Museum, Theatres, SkyPark, Retail Mall and Hotel Tower 1 Lobby). For more information please log onto - www.MarinaBaySands.com/ticketing

Monday, October 9, 2017

Our Dream Flat

My parents were happy recipients to the their 2-room rental flat from HDB, barely a few months after my birth. And it was in this little apartment where I grew up with my 3 older brothers, my parents and my grandmother as well. It was small, it was crampy but it was enough, and it was where some of my fondest memories were created.

I would do my homework on the living room floor and when night came, I would just roll out a thin mattress over the same place to sleep. We survived, all 7 of us but slowly we had more space. My older brothers got married and moved out, my grandmother passed on and then I bought my own HDB flat at the age of 23.

We were so happy when we first got the keys to our resale flat. The space in the recently vacated apartment was considered HUGE for us, even though it was just a 3room apartment. I remembered I was really house proud back then, and would clean up our newly-renovated house every weekend. Every little blemish on the wall or floor was always taken care of by yours truly.

Soon our little babies came along one by one. From newly weds, we finally became parents after 6 years. It was just a natural progression, and as we moved along in our parenting journey, we realized that our babies give us immense joy, far greater than what any inanimate material possessions could. So what if we have drawn or sticker walls, chipped furnitures or holes in our sofa? These does not matter anymore, so long as we had each other.

Even Mark Lee cannot tahan the amount of stuff and the sticker wall made by the kiddos years back!
We had been practicing co-sleeping with the kiddos since our first. I had never read up on articles related to this topic but we had been doing this all along because it just felt right for us. As irritating as it feels sometimes, the kiddos' requests to hold on to a part of us, be it our hands or legs before falling asleep, do give me the fuzzy feeling. At first it was just Steffi between the two of us on our queen-sized bed, and then Leroy came along. It was quite a squeeze when Stacci came,  so we added another single-sized bed by the side to accommodate all 5 of us in our bedroom. Up to today, we are still able to accommodate our last kiddo Louie, and the 6 of us had been sharing one bedroom all these while!

Although we were comfortable with our flat, we had dreams of upgrading to a bigger flat after we had our third child, BUT my wife left strict instructions for me, not move too far. We ever considered a jumbo flat in our block once, because that was our dream house and it was NEAR enough, but it was going for $810,000 and that required almost $100,000 in COV. We never had that sort of cash anyway. Then we considered a 5-room point block unit near our place a few months later too, but the wife finally decided that it was still better we stayed put, because our 3 kids were still young and we could still use help from our in-laws who are our neighbours just 2 units away.

Got to know my new neighbours even before we moved in, but ended up...
In the end, we finally decided to try our luck with a BTO project that opened up just a few blocks away from where we stayed. We applied under the Third Child Priority Scheme and secured our 5-room unit on our first try. At the point of our application, Louie was not even conceived yet and by the time we were supposed to collect the keys to our new flat, he was already over 3 years old! It would be just nice, now that the 2 boys get their own room and the 2 girls get one too. We thought that this would be it, that this would be our slightly bigger new home, with one extra bedroom, till the children grow up.

But as luck has it, just weeks before my key collection, my immediate neighbour came by our place and asked me if I would be selling my current flat since he knew I had gotten my new flat. I told him that I would be selling my flat to my sister-in-law since she had indicated that to me before. On hearing that, he casually mentioned that he would have to look for a buyer for his flat instead as they were looking for a bigger place too. That was when the thoughts of having my own jumbo flat came about again! I knew it would be my last shot at owning one, and at a big financial cost too, but I know I had to give it a try, for me, for the family.

Ater over a decade of staying in my 3-room flat, I finally bought a new flat, and became my own neighbour!
So after many weeks of negotiations and uncertainties, we finally sealed the deal on the purchase of the 3-room unit from our immediate neighbour in the month of September this year. So we will be having our 3-room + 3-room mini Jumbo flat soon. It will be an expansion of our current place, without the need to pack up and move to somewhere unfamiliar. Having a bigger unit, without the need to sell my current unit and incur any resale levy. It was truly the best thing that could happen to our family now. We are so excited and looking forward to a brand new home after our renovations! Sometimes life may take you on a long winding road, cause much doubts and requires you to give things up. But who knows if it might still bring you just what your heart desires, albeit a little later?

Sunday, October 8, 2017

POPULAR Readers' Choice Award 2017

I am really a "bo-chup" father when it comes to the kiddos' reading comprehension. In fact, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that my eldest two actually loves to read books relating to nature and Singapore, partly due to my ban on screentime during school days I guess. Reading was the next best thing for them to indulge in and exercise their imagination.

When POPULAR sent us Singa & The Kindness Cubbies The Kindness Adventures Collection by Sheri Tan and Secrets of Singapore: National Museum Edition by Lesley-Anne & Monica Lim for our reading pleasure, the kiddos were so happy and excited. All the cute illustrations on the books caught their attention for sure!


Just 2 days after the kiddos received their books, Steffi and Leroy had already finished reading them. The Singa series which consisted of Level 2 and Level 3 books, great for lower primary students. And what I liked about the books is that after every book, there will be pointers for discussion with the kiddos that touches on friendship, neighborliness, as well as caring for environment and elderly. Just the right stuff that we need to impart to the future generations!


Steffi enjoyed reading the Secrets of Singapore: National Museum Edition more because it actually retold the story of Singapore, something she has heard in school and had kind of hazy ideas of the timeline of how it happened. So this book actually gave her a better understanding and probably would have made a trip down to the National Museum even more fulfilling. 

These books are actually nominated for POPULAR Readers' Choice Award 2017. You can check out the official website for the full list of 30 book nominees, vote for your favourite books before 5th Nov 2017 and stand to win prizes as well! Not to mention, you will also get 20% off purchase of these books too! Thank you POPULAR for sending over the books for the kiddos!

Friday, October 6, 2017

PastaMania Kid's Meal

[Media Tasting]
Sometimes I really dunno how other people’s kids seem to eat everything, whereas mine for some reasons, seems to thrive solely on play, air and maybe soda water. I had tried to get them to eat more but to no avail unfortunately. They are never adventurous when it comes to food, but I do wonder if some cute kids’ meal would be able to whet up their appetites?


We went to PastaMania recently to check out their recent collaboration with the famous Little Miss Bento, whose creations are often too cute to be eaten. They had launched four beautiful sets for kiddos not too long ago, that were meant to entice and encourage the young ones to enjoy their meals!

So we tried out the 4 different kids’ meals (which comes with a cup of hot/chilled Milo) as follows –


Snowball (Mac & Cheese) - $12.90


Baked with love and lots of cheesy goodness between layers of penne, Snowball is the resident bunny who lives atop the Kids’ Meal Mac and Cheese – she loves her greens and is always excited to greet you!


Meows (Beef Bolognese / Chicken Bolognese) - $9.90


Choose between PastaMania’s all-time favourite beef Bolognese, or juicy minced chicken in PastaMania’s traditional homemade sauce, a favourite of Meows’, who loves playing games with his friends. Tasty and often adding a pop of colour, tomatoes are a nutrient-dense superfood rich in Vitamin C, beta-carotene, manganese and Vitamin E – giving your little one a boost of energy.


Paw Paw (Meatballs/Chicken Cheese Salsiccia) - $12.90


Paw-fectly cooked, Paw Paw is served up with flame-grilled beef meatballs or cheesy chicken sausages, a huge hit with its flavorful pasta coated in a tomato herb sauce and an adorable face to boot.


Sunny (Al Funghi/Cheesy Ham Pasta) - $9.90


Sunny days are here to stay, so come out and play with Sunny and take your pick between two choices: Al Funghi – sliced shiitake mushrooms in smooth creamy sauce or Cheesy Ham Pasta – chicken ham in homemade cheese sauce topped with parmesan, accompanied with waffle potatoes to top it off!





So did the new meals encourage my kiddos to eat more? For a start, they were definitely excited when they first saw the beautifully plated sets, but slowly they still picked out the stuff they didn’t love, like the carrots and olive slices. Of course yours truly tried all the sets too, and I must add that they were as tasty as they looked BUT my kiddos did not eat as much as I would have wanted them to! Must be our problem lah, but these sets are definitely "Instagrammable" food for sure, and I would consider them reasonably-priced too for the portions served as well.

Go try it out when you are at PastaMania with your kiddos and thank you for having us PastaMania! You can easily check where is the nearest PastaMania outlet for you here !

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Courageous Kids Challenge 2017 - Halloween Spooktacular

[Giveaway]

If you are still wondering where to bring your kiddo for some fun during Halloween, perhaps you should consider a visit to Waka Waka by The Polliwogs on 28th October 2017 for their “Courageous Kids Challenge: Halloween Spooktacular”! For $50 per child (2 accompanying adults enter free), you get to enjoy the specially curated fun and games from 5pm – 8pm, have buffet food spread, get to enjoy unlimited playtime + free Adventure Bundle worth $22 (you can get in early), and bring home a Goodie bag worth $28 as well! I calculated, it’s totally worth it! Oh wait, there are also great prizes to be won too!




If you would like to stand a chance to bring your kid there for free, you just need to complete the following steps before the end of Fri, 13 Oct 2017 -

Giveaway Instructions

1) Like and follow The "Perfect" Father Facebook page;
2) Like and follow Waka Waka Facebook page;
3) Like and Share this Facebook post publicly; and
4) Comment in the Facebook post once done (tag your friends who might be interested too okie?)

Check out https://thepolliwogs.com/courageous-kids-challenge-2017-halloween-spooktacular/ for more information on the event!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Chicken Little

[Giveaway]


Synopsis

Life on the farm can be a scary place if you’re poor Chicken Little! Mercilessly teased by her brother and sister for her everyday fearfulness, Chicken Little’s afraid of absolutely everything - even the rain! So when one day she feels something fall on her head, she immediately fears the worst – the sky is falling! But when none of her family hears her plea, she sets about telling the only one who’ll listen to her – The King.

Join Chicken Little on her quest to save her fellow farmyard animals on a journey where she’ll meet a whole host of quirky, vibrant much-loved characters, including Cocky Locky, Ducky Daddles and the brave Turkey Lurkey. But with the fearsome Foxy Loxy on the loose, can they make it to the King alive?

An infectious new musical adventure with toe-tapping songs from the creators of SRT’s Red Riding Hood and Treasure Island.
 
 
 
 
All thanks to our sponsors, a family of four will get to enjoy the new show on Sat, 11 Nov 2017! Go check your calendar, and do take part in the giveaway if you are able to make if for the show. The steps are as follows -

Giveaway Instructions

Ensure that you complete the following steps before end of Sun, 08 Oct 2017 -

1) Like and follow The "Perfect" Father Facebook page;
2) Like and follow Singapore Repertory Theatre (SRT) Facebook page;
3) Like and Share this Facebook post publicly; and
4) Comment in the Facebook post once done (tagging your friends who will be interested would be great)!

Useful Information
 
Venue: KC Arts Centre - Home of SRT at 20 Merbau Road, Singapore 239035
Date: Wed, 25 Oct - Fri, 8 Dec 2017
Time: Weekdays: 10am / Weekend & Public Holiday: 11am & 2pm
Booking Website: https://www.sistic.com.sg/events/clittle1217
 

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Caltex Fuel Your School - Tech Jam 2017

[Media Invite]

Although I go to the Science Centre a couple of times a year, it was always to visit KidsStop with the kiddos or for the exhibitions happening at The Annexe. It had been ages since I last visited the main exhibition halls and boy does it bring back memories when I revisited Science Centre yesterday with the whole family. I can still vividly remember how much I loved touching the exhibitions, pressing the buttons and figuring out how they worked when I was in primary school! I had always loved Science, was always getting distinctions for it, and the Science Centre was just like a huge playground for me back then!


We were back to Science Centre this time round for a special preview of an interactive workshop that was supposed to get the kiddos better acquainted with Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), but I ended up just as interested as the kiddos, if not more!


During the session, the kiddos got to learn how about basic circuitry and how to make LED bulbs light up with copper tapes and a simple battery! For adults, it may simply be how electricity and circuitry works, but for the younger kids, it was nothing short of magic as they watched the LED bulbs light up before their very eyes.



We were given instructions hand-outs that showed how one should arrange the bulbs and copper tapes. After we went about practicing how to make the circuits work and getting the bulbs lighted up, we were then allowed to unleash our creativity and build our own projects with all the materials provided. Well, since I was supposed to let the kiddos exercise their own creativity, I started on my own little project as well!

Steffi did her interpretation of a robotic girl with blinking eyes!
While Stacci decided to help me with my little project.
Tadaa! My very own little pot of lighted flowers powered by a single battery!
Your child will also get to participate in this project, as well as others such as "Sewing with Electronics", "Programming with Arduino" and "Music with Makey-Makey" come 14 and 15 Oct 2017 at Science Centre Singapore. It is open to kids of all ages BUT you do get priority access if you present a recent Caltex fuel transaction receipt along with a Plus! card on a first-come-first-served basis. On top of this priority access, you will also get 20% off admission to Science Centre Singapore (valid till 31 Dec 17)!

Thank you so much Caltex Singapore and Science Centre Singapore, for inviting our family over for this very educational and interesting workshop. I am confident that all those attending the open workshops on 14 and 15 Oct 2017 will feel the same way too!

Creating music with Makey-Makey




Caltex Fuel Your School - Tech Jam 2007 is an enrichment program organised by Caltex Singapore and Singapore Science Centre to spark curiosity in coding and tinkering among local school students.

The program features free interactive workshops that aim to inspire students' passion for innovation and encourage creative thinking, while breaking perceptions of traditional gender stereotypes associated with the fields of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

Integrating arts and design with traditional STEM subjects, the projects available at the workshops were specially curated by Science Centre mentors for their simplicity, relevance to real-world applications and gender neutrality. 




Giveaway Instructions

1) Like and follow The "Perfect" Father Facebook page;
2) Check out the event page on Facebook, indicate you are "Interested";
3) Like and Share this Facebook post publicly; and
4) Comment in the Facebook post once done and tag your friends too!

Complete the above steps before the end of Thu, 12 Oct 2017 to win -

  • 2 sets of goodie bags (consisting of FYS notebooks, paper circuit bookmarks, VR headsets) &
  • 4 tickets to Science Centre Singapore 

Winner to self collect prizes at Beach Centre, 15 Beach Road (near Raffles Hotel) during office hours.


Monday, September 25, 2017

Are commuters in Singapore really that terrible?

I recently read about the story of a frustrated Singaporean mom who had to commute daily in the MRT with her 10 month old baby. It was unfortunate that she encountered a nasty elderly passenger who lashed out at her for taking up space in the carriage with her pram and for “blocking” the way and it probably brought back memories of other unpleasant incidents that happened earlier when she was pregnant. While I have no doubt that these incidents are absolutely probable, but is the situation really this bleak in Singapore?

We do not always get a seat, but we are happy together!
As a father of 4 kiddos who doesn’t own a car and relies exclusively on public transport, we take the bus and MRT wherever we go, with only the occasional taxi when we are running late or are simply too tired. So I can safely say that I do have the experience of commuting with young children aged 2, 4, 6 and 8 either alone, or with my missus and so far it has always been a smooth ride (except when the MRT breaks down). In fact, I am often pleasantly surprised by the kind acts of fellow commuters at times, like my previous encounter with an auntie on board the bus which I blogged about years back.

But sometimes we do, and commuters will try to give up their seats so that the family can sit together. Maybe they paiseh also, but we are always thankful and the kiddos will always thank them! 
Even now when I get into the MRT carriages with the kiddos, I have had fellow commuters coming from afar to offer seats for the little ones. In fact, most of the times I am the one feeling bad especially when the kiddos decided to reject their offers because their idea of a fun ride involved doing some pole dancing. And when they do take up the kind offers, I always make sure that they appreciate and offer their thanks, sincerely! I will be lying if I said that seats are offered every time, but even when they are not, the kiddos also understand that they are able-bodied and it is definitely not their entitlement. I do remember that my wife was usually being offered seats too when she was pregnant back then.

Nevertheless I have to admit that getting around via MRT is a little trickier with a pram during peak hours, because for some weird reasons, MRT commuters fear moving in to the center of the train carriages. But as long as I verbalize to others on the need for me to move in with my pram, I usually have no further issues. Commuters are sometimes too engrossed with their handheld screens to notice and it sure doesn’t help for one to rely on telepathy for needs to be met. In any case, MRT doors closes fast these days, one really have to be alert when getting in or off the train.

I empathize with the mom on meeting the “crazy” lady whom I would almost be certain I would be giving a piece of my mind to if I were her. And I do recall that I did that once to an elderly lady who used vulgarities on me on the bus, but only to realize much later that she probably had some mental issues because she was doing the same thing to other passengers when I met her again a couple more times on different occasions. No point getting angry over this right?

If all else fail, maybe a trishaw for the family?
I am of the opinion that the ease of getting around Singapore with infants and young kids via public transport is still great. Unfortunate incidents do happen on and off, and everywhere as well, so I do hope the mom feels better now after writing down her thoughts. There are all sorts of people out there and while we cannot change how others behave, as parents we have the responsibility, and we definitely can help shape the way our future generations conduct themselves.

For me personally, I will ensure that my own kiddos are being schooled on the following –
  • Whenever things do not go their way, stop, take a step back and relax. It doesn’t always happen that way and there are surely more pleasant occasions!
  • No one can make you unhappy, except yourself.
  • Do not be afraid to ask for assistance if necessary, and always remember to offer theirs if the situation calls for it.
  • Do not be disappointed with rejections, you can never really know the reasons behind them. Besides, no one owes anyone a living, so be gracious. 
Hopefully with the above, my kiddos can be stronger, more self-reliant and empathetic and not grow up to be self-centered and self-entitled little monsters! 

Note: This blog post is in collaboration with Friso. Kids learn from experiences whether big or small, good or bad. That’s why Friso provides the right nutrition for your child to be strong inside to take on challenges. For more information on Friso, follow them on their Website, Facebook or Instagram.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Mid-Autumn Fair @ Junction 8

What is Mid-Autumn Festival without mooncakes? There are so many different types of mooncakes in every conceivable flavour and even designs these days, that it is difficult to make up my mind on what I want, let alone what to get for friends and family. But come 18 Sept - 03 Oct, Bishan Junction 8 will be holding its Mid-Autumn Fair where over 20 different bakeries, hotels and restaurants will be showcasing the best of their mooncake creations!


You can be sure that all the famous brands will be present and you will be able to sample the mooncakes before making the purchase! Try not to do that before having your meals though, with that much variety available, you may be tempted to over-indulge with the sampling! Here are just some of the brands you will be able to find at the fair -


Goodwood Park Hotel


Prickly Pear with Bergamot Snowskin Mooncake 冰皮仙人掌果佛手柑 - A stunning new entry decked in a delightful hue of blush pink, this creation is made with the fruit of the cactus plant – also known as prickly pear. A fascinating ingredient that is purported to be very healthful, it lends a juicy texture and mellow sweetness to the confection. The use of bergamot yields a citrusy top note while diced pears add crunch to the filling mix.



Apple Cider Snowskin Mooncake 冰皮苹果酒 - A tribute to the fizzy favourite, this deep pink-coloured mooncake boasts a refreshing flavour that is a balance of sweet and tangy. Dotted with diced apples, this mildly-alcoholic creation is perfect to liven up the afternoon and best enjoyed with the same drink! Root Beer Snowskin Mooncake 冰皮根汁水. A taste of nostalgia for some, this crowd-pleaser of a beverage has now morphed into a cream-coloured mooncake. Using root beer as a base, this version is given an added boost of flavours with vanilla beans and a tinge of rum.


Mandarin Oriental


Singapore Pandan with dried cherries and pistachio mooncakes Inspired by Singapore’s national cake, Cherry Garden introduces the pandan with dried cherries and pistachio mooncakes, a perfect pairing of the aromatic pandanus palm and smooth lotus paste, studded with sweet dried cherries and crunchy pistachio bits for a luscious finish.


Long Jiang Chinos


Restaurant Long Jiang’s Signature Teochew ‘Orh-Nee’ Mooncakes Our trademark Teochew ‘Orh-Nee’ mooncake have come a long way since its humble beginnings in 1988. Savoured by the young and old alike, each bite is reminiscent of your childhood, with a lingering aftertaste that assures you’ll be asking for more.


Keeping to tradition, Long Jiang continues to be committed in delivering only the true Singaporean flavours without compromising on top-notch quality. Every ‘Orh-Nee’ mooncake is set to charm you with an exquisite sweetness that beguiles your palate. The unison of the dense sikly yam paste, and the flaky puff pastry is baked to a gorgeous creamy brown, makes each mooncake a pleasant trove of flavours.


Home’s Favourite 



Snow-skin Top Grade Black Gold Mao Shan Wang Durian Mooncake The push to continually create new tastes for our customers saw the launch of its 100% pure Durian Mooncake in 2002. It proved an instant hit and in 2007, they introduced the first ever Black Durian Mooncake. This scrumptious mooncake so lusciously good they even picked up a few awards overseas! Today, Home's Favourite is synonymous with top quality durian mooncakes and a delectable range of tarts, cookies, mooncakes and desserts. The mooncakes are going for 20% off from 18 - 20 Sept for the launch f the fair!




Here are some good reasons why you should be getting your mooncakes from Junction 8 -

CapitaStar and American Express® CapitaCard Members

Enjoy up to 25% off selected brands at the fair!

Personalized Gift Set 


Special price of $80 (U.P. $128) a special gift set consisting of 4 mooncakes, rose tea and tea cups. Mix and match selected flavours from any of 9 hotel brands: Carlton Hotel Singapore, Holiday Inn® Singapore Atrium, Intercontinental Singapore, Mandarin Orchard Singapore, Marina Mandarin Singapore, Orchard Hotel Singapore, Regent Singapore, Sheraton Towers Singapore and The Fullerton Hotel Singapore.


You can even opt not to take the rose tea or teacups and get it as a set of 5 or 6 mooncakes! If you buy two boxes of this special gift set, you can also purchase red wine at a special price.


Gift With Purchase

The Miffy promotion is still on-going and you are still in time to collect the beautiful Miffy tumblers! Get one free with every $180 purchase so check here for more information!




This blogpost is brought to you in collaboration with Junction 8!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Mid-Autumn Go Where?

[Event Listings]

Mid-Autumn Festival is coming soon and there are so many activities lined up for the entire family, happening at different places. Check out some of these activities which were brought to our attention, many of which are free too!





GARDENS BY THE BAY 

This September, Gardens by the Bay celebrates the season of abundance with its annual “Mid-Autumn @ Gardens by the Bay” festival, and a new floral display in Flower Dome called “Autumn Harvest”.

The month also sees the launch of a new orchid display in Cloud Forest – the first in a series of biannual displays in the cool-moist conservatory to showcase the world’s most diverse botanical family.


"AUTUMN HARVEST” FLORAL DISPLAY (丰收之秋) 

A lavish flower field saturated in rich hues of orange, red, gold and green welcomes visitors this September, as autumn comes to Flower Dome in the “Autumn Harvest” floral display. Savour how the traditional season of crop gathering is interpreted in creative ways – a bounteous land is inhabited by a fruit and vegetable giant; a lush farm plot overflows with abundant produce and blooms like anemones, gaillardias, phloxes and chrysanthemums; and Cinderella’s pumpkin carriage sits pretty amidst pumpkin trees. Pumpkins take on yet another twist in the mini Halloween exhibit, where myriad carved and decorated versions celebrate the most anticipated festival of fall. There are more than 10 varieties of special pumpkins to see, such as the pristine white “Polar Bear”, the pretty striped “Pump-Ke-Mon” and the bizarre-looking “Red Warty Thing”. 

This year, the lanterns dotting the outdoor gardens as part of the annual Mid-Autumn Festival continue inside Flower Dome. Look out for a plethora of fruit and vegetable-shaped lanterns, and drop by the Mediterranean Garden for a photo opportunity with a giant pumpkin lantern. 

Date: Friday, 1 September – Sunday, 29 October 
Time: 9am – 9pm 
Location: Flower Dome 
Details: Admission charge to the conservatories applies. 

CURIOUS TO FIND OUT MORE? 

Pick up an Autumn Harvest Garden Trail for more interesting information or join us for daily “ASK Me!” tours by our friendly Display Interpreters as they share fascinating botanical facts and anecdotes about the floral display. 

Date: Friday, 1 September – Sunday, 29 October 
Time: Daily at 11am and 3pm (2pm – 5pm on 23 and 24 September, and 14 and 15 October) 
Details: 
  • Guided tours are free, but admission charge to the Flower Dome applies. 
  • Tours last approximately 15 minutes and are available on a first-come-first-served basis. 
  • To participate, gather at the “ASK Me!” poster near the Flower Field. Tour will begin when a group of five or more visitors is assembled. 
  • Tours will not be conducted on Flower Dome closure dates.



MID-AUTUMN @ GARDENS BY THE BAY 2017 (滨海花园庆中秋) 


A much-anticipated event in the Gardens' calendar, Mid-Autumn @ Gardens by the Bay draws visitors with its sprawling lantern displays and myriad festivities amidst a lush garden setting. This year, the Gardens celebrates autumn abundance with lantern sets symbolic of bountiful harvests and good fortune, nightly cultural performances, a food street featuring Asian delights, and craft booths offering activities like lantern decorating, umbrella painting and Chinese knotting. 

Visitors are encouraged to download the new “Mid-Autumn @ Gardens by the Bay” app from the App Store or Google Play, available from 4 September, before exploring the festival. Developed by students from Singapore University of Technology and Design, the app allows visitors to uncover fun facts and quiz themselves on the different lantern sets while strolling through the Gardens. 

Date: Friday, 22 September – Sunday, 8 October 
Time: 6pm – 11pm Location: Various locations (see details below) 
Details: For more information and updates, visit www.gardensbythebay.com.sg/midautumn


Lantern Displays 

Take a stroll through the outdoor gardens where sprawling lantern sets bring to life scenes of bountiful harvests and abundance. Don't miss “Waters of Prosperity”, the largest lantern display created by the Gardens to date. Spanning an area of 1,250 square metres over water, this lantern set portrays a fishing village teeming with 70 carp lanterns. Other highlights include “Grains of Gold”, a paddy field illuminated with 4,000 glowing rice stalks; “Splendour of Blooms” featuring some 250 waterlily lanterns floating on the lake; and “Flight of the Dragonflies” with more than 100 dragonfly lanterns adorning the Supertrees and Dragonfly Bridge. The lanterns dotting the outdoor gardens continue inside Flower Dome as part of the “Autumn Harvest” floral display; look out for a plethora of fruit and vegetable lanterns including a giant pumpkin one! Updated 22 August 2017 

Illuminations of Joy 

The Silver Garden comes aglow with some 1,000 light installations created by beneficiaries from 30 voluntary welfare organisations in Singapore. This community project is the brainchild of local eco designer Didier Ng and visual artist Vijaya Mohan, who holds a Guinness World Record for the largest Rangoli pattern (2003) and 14 Singapore Records. 

Blossoming Harvest – Traditional Arts Showcase 

Curated by co-organiser, the National Arts Council, the free nightly cultural programme will present opportunities for visitors to enjoy and be inspired by Singapore’s rich heritage. Appreciate vibrant and diverse traditional arts performances by home-grown arts groups of different genres, race and age, and bond over the creative interpretations of Blossoming Harvest. 

Lantern Riddles 

Traditionally written on lanterns hence the name, lantern riddles were often enjoyed during the MidAutumn Festival. Have a go and discover more about Chinese language and culture! 

Fun Zone 

Try your hand at arts and crafts like lantern decorating, umbrella painting and Chinese knotting at the interactive craft booths. Charges apply. 

Food Street 

Indulge in a spread of Asian delights at Colonnade at Supertree Grove! Charges apply. 



GARDEN RHAPSODY: TALES OF THE MOON 

This special Mid-Autumn edition of the popular nightly light and sound show Garden Rhapsody features a medley of popular tunes that revolve around the moon, such as the jazz favourite “Fly Me to the Moon” and the Chinese classic “The Moon Represents My Heart” (月亮代表我的心). 

Date: Friday, 22 September – Tuesday, 31 October 
Time: 7.45pm and 8.45pm 
Location: Supertree Grove



DINING CRÈME DE LA CRÈME 2017 MOONCAKE COLLECTIONS AT BAKERZIN 

This Mid-Autumn Festival, Bakerzin presents award-winning favourites from a total of eight collections! The new and limited Bold Collection features four new flavours – American Ginseng, Ginger, Sakura Ebi and Tom Yum. Durian lovers rejoice as the Majestic Collection of Durian Snow Skin Mooncakes makes its comeback. While the classic Signature and Premium Collections of pure Premium Egg Yolk Blend Mooncakes and Classic Melon Seed Mooncakes are perfect as gifts for business associates and families. For more information and early bird discounts, visit www.bakerzin.com. 

Date: Monday, 7 August 2017 – Wednesday, 4 October 2017 
Location: Bakerzin 
Details: 
  • Mooncake flavours are subject to availability while stocks last. 
  • Collection of mooncakes from 10 September 2017 onwards. 



MID-AUTUMN FESTIVAL MOONCAKES AT MAJESTIC BAY SEAFOOD RESTAURANT

Majestic Bay Seafood Restaurant ushers in Mid-Autumn Festival with its popular mooncakes. Besides signature favourites like Baked White Lotus Paste with Double Yolks (Low Sugar) and Mini Snow Skin King of Durian, there are also new snow skin mooncake flavours like Thai Tea, Raw Honey and Ginger, as well as Chocolate and Truffle. For more information and early bird discounts, contact Majestic Bay Seafood Restaurant at 6604 6604. 

Date: Monday, 28 August 2017 – Wednesday, 4 October 2017 
Location: Majestic Bay Seafood Restaurant 



AUTUMN GARDEN HIGH TEA FOR 2 AT INDOCHINE 

IndoChine at Gardens by the Bay presents an Autumn Garden High Tea for 2 at $48++ per set. Choose any two pots of specialty teas of your choice, such as the Orange Peel Chrysanthemum and Rock Sugar Lemongrass, as well as a sweet and savoury tapas from the tapas collection. The lineup of savoury tapas includes the Potato Beignet with Truffle Mayo, Norwegian Salmon with Herbs and Spices on Tart, and Signature Rice Paper Prawn Roll. As for sweet tapas, the choices include Apple Vanilla Les Tarte, Double Chocolate Chous Chous and more. 

Date: Friday, 1 September 2017 – Sunday, 29 October 2017 
Location: IndoChine 
Details: 
  • Subject to service charge and prevailing GST. 
  • For enquiries or reservations, please call 6694 8489 or email rsvp-supertree@indochinegroup.com.  



EXHIBITIONS CHANGING ORCHID DISPLAYS IN CLOUD FOREST 

If you love orchids, you will be in for a treat this September, as the first in a series of changing orchid displays in Cloud Forest will be launched. Orchids belong to the family Orchidaceae, which is one of the largest families of flowering plants in the world. The changing orchid displays in Cloud Forest aim to educate visitors on the various genera of orchids, and showcase their fascinatingly myriad forms and colours. 

The first display, which opens on 11 September, focuses on orchids from the genus Cattleya, and will showcase more than 400 of them in the rich colours of fall. Regarded as the “Queen of Orchids”, the Cattleya is also called “Corsage Orchid” due to the significant size of its blooms. With hybridisation widely practised, Cattleya flowers now come in a wide spectrum of colours. Visitors can look forward to seeing varieties such as Rhyncholaeliocattleya Duh’s Fantasy ‘Mellow’, an award-winning orchid with deep red blooms and a ruffled dark fuchsia lip marked with yellow grooves, and Cattleya intermedia¸ a pinkish-white orchid native to Brazil that is known for its sweet fragrance. 

Date: Monday, 11 September 2017 – Sunday, 10 December 2017 
Time: 9am – 9pm Location: Cloud Forest 
Details: Admission charge to the conservatories applies.



Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival 2017  
年牛车水中秋节庆祝活动 
(20 Sep – 19 Oct 2017) 


Walk down memory lane with your loved ones at Chinatown’s annual MidAutumn Festival Celebrations this September! Soak in the joyous atmosphere that will bring back nostalgic memories of your childhood, as the streets of the Chinatown precinct are illuminated by a plethora of dazzling and brightly-hued LED lantern displays, guaranteed to leave visitors in wide-eyed wonder. 

Other than the impressive lantern display that seeks to bring out one of the most well-known and beloved traditions of the Mid-Autumn Festival this year, visitors to Chinatown can look forward to various other festival activities organised by Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng Citizens’ Consultative Committee (KA-KS CCC) from Wed, 20 Sep to Thu, 19 Oct 2017. 

Themed “Celebrations of our Traditions <<传统新意庆中秋, 同心共乐贺团 圆>>”, event highlights for the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival 2017 include: 

Lantern Painting Competition 灯笼彩绘比赛 
17 Sep 2017 (Sunday) 
9.00am – 12.00pm 
Chinatown Point


The annual Lantern Painting Competition will see up to 500 children and students 16 and below from all over the island compete as they put their artistic skills to the mettle to create beautifully-painted lanterns that will add to the festive decorations in Chinatown. The winning lanterns will be displayed along Pagoda Street until 19 October 2017. 

Festive Street Bazaar 中秋街头市集 
20 Sep – 4 Oct 2017 
10.30am – 10.30pm 
Pagoda Street, Trengganu Street, Sago Street, Smith Street, and open area in front of People’s Park Complex 

During the Mid-Autumn Festival, the streets of Chinatown will be abuzz with stalls selling a wide array of festive items, including mooncakes, decorative ornaments, preserved fruits, potted plants, and everything you need to celebrate the festival! 

Official Light-Up and Opening Ceremony 开幕典礼与亮灯仪式 
23 Sep 2017 (Saturday) 
7.00pm – 10.00pm 
New Bridge Road 

Officially kicking off the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival Celebrations 2017 is the Official Light-Up and Opening Ceremony, where the streets of Chinatown will come alive in a vibrant splash of colours forming this year’s lantern display. Take a blast to the past as this year’s performances showcase the traditions synonymous with the Festival and be awed by the spectacular lighting and visual effects at this year’s Opening Ceremony. There will also be jaw-dropping acrobatic acts and multicultural performances by the various racial and cultural communities in Chinatown. 

Nightly Stage Shows 综艺晚会 
23 Sep – 4 Oct 2017 
8.00pm – 10.30pm 
Kreta Ayer Square 

Visitors can look forward to two exciting weeks of traditional Chinese cultural performances, from festive songs to music and dance items by top-notch troupes and entertainers, that will lift the celebratory mood each night during the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival Celebrations. 

Street Light-Up 牛车水庆中秋亮灯 
23 Sep – 19 Oct 2017 
7.00pm – 2.00am (Fri & Sat) 7.00pm – 12.00mn (Sun – Thu) 
Eu Tong Sen Street, New Bridge Road, South Bridge Road 

Following the Official Light-Up and Opening Ceremony, the Chinatown MidAutumn Festival Celebrations’ Street Light-Up will come alive each night for a month. One of the main highlights each year, the annual Street Light-Up draws local and overseas visitors, young and old, to Chinatown to view the mesmerising display of lanterns that bring out the festive mood like nowhere else in Singapore. This year, the splendid lantern display will depict one of the most well-known and beloved hallmarks of the Mid-Autumn Festival – the tradition of carrying lanterns. This year’s Street Light-Up is also designed in collaboration with the students of the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA). 

Mid-Autumn Family Fest @ Chinatown 中秋“家”节 @ 牛车水 
24 Sep 2017 (Sunday) 
9.30am – 12.30pm 
Kreta Ayer Community Club, Level 2 Multi-Purpose Hall 

A new highlight this year, the Mid-Autumn Family Fest @ Chinatown will be a melting pot of traditional festive activities such as mooncake-making, calligraphy writing, tea art appreciation, and lantern painting! It promises to be fun-filled day of bonding and discovery of the meaning and stories behind these traditional activities. Suitable for all ages, participants can look forward to getting hands-on as they try their hand at the fine art of calligraphy, learning how to savour different types of tea and even bring home luscious treats of their own creation at the snowskin mooncake-makingworkshops. 

For a participation fee of $5 per person, participants will be able to take part in the mooncake-making, calligraphy writing and lantern painting activities as well as receive a goodie bag containing a mooncake mould, ingredients for mooncake-making, and lucky draw coupon. Slots for the mooncake-making workshops are on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Mass Lantern Walk 中秋大型游灯会 
1 Oct 2017 (Sunday) 
7.00pm – 10.00pm 
Starting point – Kreta Ayer Square (Registration location) End point – Main stage at New Bridge Road 

Soak in the festive atmosphere and take part in the annual Mass Lantern Walk during which families, friends and the community will come together and take a leisurely walk through Chinatown while carrying lanterns of all shapes and sizes! Featuring performances by local clan associations, dragon dance troupes, overseas performing groups, as well as a special dragon dance performance by the troop from Thye Hua Kwan Moral Society (德教太和观龙 狮团), celebrations will mount to a high at the closing event of the Chinatown Mid-Autumn Festival Celebrations 2017.



ESPLANADE - THEATRES ON THE BAY 
Moonfest 艺满中秋 2017

From ONE to SIX: Highlights of Moonfest 2017 

1. The TOP Peking Opera artists and Chinese classical musicians meet at Moonfest

Dubbed the National Key Peking Opera Troupe by China’s Ministry of Culture, Hubei Provincial Peking Opera Theatre (China) brings to opera lovers in Singapore its signature Peking opera comedy Promotion of Judge Xu featuring two-time Plum Blossom award winner Zhu Shihui, as well as Peking Opera Classic Excerpts performed by Plum Blossom Award winners Pei Yongjie, Wang Xiaochan and Wan Xiaohui. A selection of principal and star players from the China Broadcasting Chinese Orchestra—Jiang Kemei (huqin), Zhang Gaoxiang (yangqin), Chen Yin (pipa), Ma Li (percussion), Cui Junmiao (liuqin), Hou Changqing (dizi) and Zhou Yixiang (suona)—will lead a 20-strong chamber orchestra to enthrall music lovers with Virtuosos & Classics – A Chamber Concert, featuring favourite classics such as A Moonlit Night on a Spring River, Hua Bang Zi, Sentiment of Qin Chuan, Mountain Dance, and more.

2. PAIR up and double down the fun in Parent-Child Workshops 

To encourage the younger generation to learn more about traditional Chinese arts in a fun way, parents can bring their little ones to participate in the Parent-Child: DIY Snowskin Mooncakes and DIY Dough Figurine Workshops. Or, get the children to make their own rocking rooster lanterns in the Lantern Making Workshop.

3. THIRD Festival Commission by Paper Monkey Theatre 

Another programme that young ones can look forward to during Moonfest is the new production by Paper Monkey Theatre, The Magic Paintbrush which is a puppetry adaptation of the classic Chinese folktale. This is the third puppetry production that Esplanade has commissioned Paper Monkey Theatre to produce for Moonfest, following Journey West: Web of Deceit in 2015 and The Magic Lantern in 2016.

4. FOUR ethnic minority folk dances by young, award-winning solo dancers 

Over the years, Esplanade has expanded the variety of traditional Chinese arts programmes presented at Moonfest. With Chinese opera and classical music presentations as the festival’s mainstay, Esplanade has specially commissioned a folk dance production for the first time in Moonfest! In Soulful Steps – An Ethnic Dance & Music Recital, discover the beauty of Dai, Kazakh, Mongol and Tibetan folk dances through modern interpretations by young, awardwinning dance graduates from Minzu University of China, one of the most prestigious universities in China that specialises in ethnic studies and the arts. The dancers will be paired with live music played on traditional instruments such as the dombra (long-necked lute) from Kazakh, morin khuur (horsehead fiddle) from Mongol and eagle-bone flute from Tibet.

5. FIVE new programmes to engage the youths in traditional Chinese arts 

Passing on traditions and engaging the youths in Chinese arts has always been a key focus of Moonfest. This year, the festival introduces a range of new programmes that features young artists doing their part in preserving various traditional Chinese arts. These include a fashion parade in Hanfu (traditional clothing of the Chinese Han culture); Chinese opera performances by youths; ‘grandfather’ storytelling (Chinese street storytelling) sessions, as well as hands on workshops on water calligraphy and Wing Chun martial arts.

6. SIX days of free programmes at SIX public spaces around Esplanade 

Not to be missed too are the free programmes that will take place at the Esplanade Concourse, Festival Corner, Forecourt Garden, Waterfront Canopy, Outdoor Theatre, and The Edge during the six-day festival. Walk down memory lane and celebrate the Mid-Autumn season through traditional Chinese arts performances and activities such as orchestral music, dance, crosstalk, lantern riddles, street opera performances at the outdoor Moonfest Chinese Opera Stage, and more. Pick up a free lantern sponsored by Gold Roast Instant Beverages and join in the fun at the festival’s popular Lantern Walkabout on 30 September 2017 too.

Moonfest – A Mid-Autumn Celebration 2017 is made possible with the generous support of Arts Partner – Gold Roast Instant Beverages.

Esplanade&Me Special Ticket Prices for Moonfest 2017 

Tickets for Moonfest 2017 are available from Esplanade’s website, and through SISTIC (Website, Hotline: +65 6348 5555 and all SISTIC outlets). Esplanade&Me cardholders will get to enjoy special ticket prices for various performances at Moonfest 2017. Launched on 1 July 2015, Esplanade&Me is a platform for Esplanade to build stronger community ties with its fans and supporters. Beyond the savings that cardholders can enjoy across Esplanade’s festivals and programmes all year round, Esplanade&Me is also an opportunity for arts lovers to get closer to the arts and be more involved through various behind-the-scenes activities. Sign up for Esplanade&Me now! For more information, please visit www.esplanade.com/e-and-me.

Check out the ticketed and free programme line-up on www.esplanade.com/moonfest!