Let’s go to… the Singapore Garden Festival 2014

One of my friends had texted me a few weeks ago to ask if we were interested to visit the Singapore Garden Festival because they had a couple of tickets to spare and thought of us. How sweet right? I thought since I haven’t seen this friend in a long time, we arranged to go to the festival together on the 1st day.

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We saw all sorts of flowers that day. Rare flowers, common flowers, big flowers, teeny tiny flowers and even Old Flower Eyes (老花眼. Chinese translation of Presbyopia). I was told many of the exotic flowers were specially flown in just for the event and designers from top garden shows around the world were invited to create special themed displays during the festival as well.

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Visitors were especially attracted to the Orchid Extravaganza which housed several award winning orchids in the Flower Dome. Everybody wanted to get closer to the orchids and take multiple macros of the same bloom in the same position. They were also waiting to get into the 10-metre column which I heard had a nice surprise insideThe line into the special area was so long that we had to give it a miss. I mean, we can still see it from the perimeter. Just not close enough to take nice macro shots of the gorgeous blooms. All of these special blooms were on loan from private collectors and external vendors. There were even medals and plaques displayed quite prominently next to the flowers. Next to these medals and plaques, you will see Do Not Touch signs. In fact, these signs can be seen all over the Flower Dome. Even the hardy succulent zones had signs to remind visitors not to pelt the poor plants with the stones that were scattered around them. People don’t understand these cactuses can DIE one. I saw a kid threw some small stones at the plants for fun and his parents did nothing. So irritating.

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You would think at the Orchid Extravaganza area with so many ‘caretakers’ and signs people will understand right? Nope. I saw a guy trying to pull some orchids closer to his wife so she could use her puny iPhone to take shots of it. Come on. Don’t act blur when told you are not supposed to touch the flowers ok? A simple Sorry or Ok is good enough. Don’t pretend and say “Oh I nair say the sign” or “I was just taking photos” or worse “No, I nair touch!” You so big size, how not to see your big burly hand tugging on the delicate flower leh? Look! It was still swinging from side to side when you suddenly let go of it lor. *rolleyes* Luckily, the ‘caretakers’ were very polite and friendly, unlike me, so there was no drama after minor confrontation.

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We were wandering around the tents in The Meadow and came across some students showcasing their works made from recycled materials. One in particular caught our eye and we went closer to take a look. While we were watching the student demonstrate how she used a plastic bag to make into a flower, a lady decided she NEEDED to record the entire process on video with her camera. She shoved Xan (who was standing right next to me) aside saying “I want to take a video of this.” HARLOW? I told her “Hey! He was here first, don’t shove him around!” It was as though I was invisible because she didn’t seem to care at all. I wanted to tell this auntie her camera has this thing called the Zoom Lens and that if she looked down she will realize she has feet and can use them to move around my child to take her video. Why must be at that particular spot leh? Wah lau. *grumblegrumble*

I wished I was able to spend more time to see all the flowers properly especially the 10-metre column. It would’ve been nice to take a picture of the inside. Oh well. Kids and babies are not made for long walks in crowded spaces. Maybe next time I should go on my own. It is impossible to take clear photos with a wriggly baby strapped in front of you.

Today is the last day of the festival and in case you decide to go take a look (I highly recommend you should), here are some tips I want to share with you:

  1. Try not to bring your strollers. It will be very crowded and trying to manoeuvre your tank through the sea of people will be tricky. If you simply have to bring it, bring lor. Don’t say I never tell you ah.
  2. There are very few resting spots at the festival so if you are bringing your elderly parents (such fillial chewren you are! *clap clap*), go slow and seek refuge inside the air-conditioned tents frequently.
  3. Bring a hat and sunglasses because it might get really hot and sunny.
  4. Limited carpark lots. You might be better off taking public transport.
  5. Don’t touch the flowers if they tell you not to touch them! Some of the plants are very sensitive to the oils on your hands and will DIE! Admire the flowers with your eyes and cameras only please ok?

Do hop over to Cheekiemonkie and Princess Dana Diaries to read about their experiences at the festival.

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Venue: Gardens by the Bay (in case you didn’t know)
Show Opening Hours: 10am to 10pm daily
Conservatories Opening Hours: 9am – 10pm daily

SGF 2014 Ticket Pricing

Let’s play… Vegetable stamping!

I had been thinking of doing some vegetable stamping with Xan for quite a long time because we have never done it before. Usually thinking of it after the vegetables end up either in our bellies or in the trash. I only cook We love eating Shanghai Greens and the stems are perfect for the art project. I managed to save all 3 this time and even struck a deal with the Little Man to finish every grain of food and we could do some art and craft after that. I think he barely looked up from his bowl and managed to finish his food in record time. He absolute LOVES art and craft. I haven’t met any child who loves it more than he does. If he was given a choice, he will want to do crafts all day (and night) long. He’s too easy to bribe 🙂

Good to eat, great for print.

We started off with single colour stamping on a few sheets of drawing paper before progressing to multiple colours. I tried to convince him that it was ok to mix colours without mixing completely. Er. You know, put 2 or 3 colours together but not mix them into various gross shades of…brown. I hate brown. I like coffee, I like chocolate, I love suede. Just not brown. It’s so dull. Cannot stand it.

Simple pleasures.

Tried as I might, Xan ended up mixing all the colours to create a wonderful dull shade of brown. Haha! Never mind lah. There will be plenty of opportunities to do stamping again. Perhaps then I will try with a variety of vegetables or even attempt to carve shapes onto some root vegetables. *gasp!* I’ll be sure to update here if I do. At least now, I have a few sheets of his masterpieces to make into Christmas cards for our family members this year.

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Happy Mother’s Day

Xan’s school organized a simple Mother’s Day celebration in school on Friday. He kept talking about the card he had made for me with the teachers in school for days. “Mummy I made a heart-shaped card on a stick for you!”, then goes on excitedly to describe it as best as he could. Although I was excited to see the card he had made for me, I was dreading the interaction I have to have with the other mothers. In fact *whispers* I can’t stand a few of them. 😛

Growing up, I’ve always had more guy friends than girl friends. Sure I played masak masak, dressed up my 1 and only Barbie in weird and wonderful outfits and liked puffed up princess dresses (never owned any though). That was only in the privacy of my own room. I preferred to play other stuff when I’m out with friends. Ride a bike, poke some random frogs, pluck weeds, roller skate or whatever activity that will result in a hot and sweaty mess. Girls my age back then don’t like to sweat.

As a result, I’m not usually inclined to interact with other women because I can’t seem to connect with them. I’m not quite a girlie girl who lives for makeup, fashion brands or high teas. No common interests to keep the conversation going leh. My only contact with them so far is when we’re stuck in the lift together or outside the door while we wait for the teachers to let us in at 9.20am or downstairs when Xan spots one of his friends from across the road “HI ASHLEY!!! Mummy mummy! That’s my friend Ashley and her mummy!”

Anyhoo, back to the party. It was a much simpler affair this year. In the middle of the room, there was a table with containers of freshly chopped up fruits and vegetables with a few salad dressing on the side. The kids were supposed to gather some for their mummies and the mummies were encouraged to join in. As soon as the teachers gave the go ahead, the herd of mummies attacked the table of fresh vegetables. Xan had to jostle his way through the sea of backsides just to get his dear mummy some salad. Aww!

The kids were being their usual happy boisterous selves. The mummies were either busy force feed feeding healthy food to their kids or showing off their child’s latest portfolio of headshots to the teachers or pretending every other parent is invisible. Me? I just sat there, get fed by Xan and taking mental notes of everything to tell you here lah!

I was happy to see the kids enjoying themselves and playing with each other. It was an opportunity for me to put names to the faces I see on FB and in school. I was a little peeved when a mother didn’t even thank me when I made Xan gave up his seat for her when her seats were hijacked by another mum. When she saw Xan sniffing away because he had a slight runny nose, she very loudly asked her kids if they were having runny noses too then made them grab their sweaters from their bags. Hello? I’m not more than 20cm from you leh. Don’t be so obvious mah. Anyway, your crappy sweaters ain’t gonna do shit to prevent your kids from the diseases the other kids in school are just dying to spread to your babies. What a donkey.

There was 1 or 2 genuinely friendly ones but like the plastic chairs, they were also quickly hijacked by other mummies. Never mind lah. I was there for my little boy and I’m glad he had a good time. He was gracious to give up the chair for the woman and thoughtful to give mummy a few bites of the salad even though you could tell he was famished! LOL!

Thank you for the lovely gift, baby! I love you too!

My son made this, with the teachers’ help of course but I don’t care lah.