So I went back home for a short trip recently with one main agenda in mind. It's something both the wife and I have been planning and looking forward to but I'll come to that later.
I exited the gates of the KLIA to be greeted by gloomy grey skies ... not suprising since it's now the dreaded monsoon season. Wifey took the day off to pick me up from the airport but I was being all cranky from the severe lack of proper rest. I guess it's the built up from weeks of lousy slumber and the red eye flight I was on was absolutely torturous with a toddler literally screaming his head off through out the 7 hour flight. If only murder wasn't a crime, I wouldn't think twice about flushing that li'll bugger down the toilet.
Anyways, I perked up after getting my much needed dose of caffeine at Old Town Kopitiam with the family. From there, wifey and I adjourned to the in-laws and we were presented with a gift from YJ. It's one of em' steamboat cum grill set which I'm certain we'll put to good use. :)
We then braved the rush hour traffic frenzy to the gym in PJ for a special Body Combat class by Peekae (a Les Mills Master Trainer from our nothern neighbour). The crowd was overwhelming without an inch of space to spare in the studio. Even with the intteruption of the failed sound system, it was a awesome class and I enjoyed the preview to the upcoming release. After a good workout, wifey and I treated ourselves to some delicious grub along Jalan 223 ... we feasted on Hokkien Mee, ikan bakar and ling chee kang. And that concludes Day 1.
The next day, we met the in-laws for breakfast before taking Bryan to the hypermarket for some grocery shopping. Bryan was gonna serve us chicken chop for lunch and we spent quite a fair bit of time buying the ingredients as wifey and I were also shopping for our own. Back at the in-law's place, I met Bryan's other half for the first time and Abby turned out to be a rather pleasant girl. Although it was a wee bit too salty, Bryan's chicken chop in mushroom sauce is good enough to sell. Credit must also be given for his efforts in the presentation of the dish. Later that night, wifey and I thougt of heading to Feast Village for dinner but detoured to Paya Serai @ PJ Hilton instead since it's been a while since we both had buffet. The spread was decent and by the time I paid the bill, satay and rendang were oozing out of my ears.
We met up with the Lims for lunch the next day at Duck King @ Jaya One. Shaun's buying in conjunttion with his graduation from the management trainee program. The food was excellent and we adjounred thereafter to Starbucks for coffee. Later that night, we attended a friend's wedding dinner and it was good to catch up with some ol' mates. Food was aplenty that night since 4 others from our table decided to emulate Houdini's dissapearing act.
We were invited by the in laws for lunch the next day. Tony Roma opened a new outlet along Jln Yap Kwan Seng and wifey's parents being regular customers were invited to grace its pre opening. The management of Tony Roma wanted to train their staff and so we were the designated 'guinea pigs' to test out how well the team was doing. Food was delicious although teething problems with the service were encountered. That is to be expected though and we couldn't really complain much since the entire meal was on the house. *Woot*
Alas, disaster soon struck. It was pouring heavily and Rain (our family dog) was barking like crazy as he is terrified of thunder. So to calm him down, dad released him from his leash, so he was roaming free within the porch area. When I got home, I totally forgot that Rain was unleashed despite my dad sms-ing me earlier bout it. The moment I opened the gate, Rain dashed out of the house. By the time I parked my car in and went out to look for him, he was no where to be found. Dad and I drove around the area but there was no sign of the furry bugger. This isn't the first time Rain 'escaped', so we were hoping that he would eventually find his way home, just like last time. Wifey and I hit the gym later that evening but I guess Rain being missing really affected me. Halfway through the class, I lost focus and left abruptly. We had a simple dinner of porridge before calling it a day.
We woke up early the next day and had some dim sum in USJ 21. Still no sign of Rain but we've got pressing matters at hand. Today is the day wifey and I are officially moving into our home. We bought a small condo and spend the last couple of months doing up the place. Bit by bit, the place is almost complete now and we're proud to call it home. After breakfast, we went to Carrefour for some last minute shopping before making our way to he condo. My mom had earlier prepared an auspicious basket of pineapple and oranges as a token of luck and prosperity. I've also printed out a list I found on the internet pertaining to the do's and don'ts of moving into a new home. We turned on the lights, gas and water for some time and opened all the windows to regulate the flow of 'chi' in the house. We also boiled some water and sprinkled a mixture of rice, salt and tea leaves on all corners to ward off uninvited guests. :p Next, we hung up a piece of red cloth at the main entrance and placed sweets on all desk and table tops ... apparently this is for garnering wealth. Better to be safe than sorry no? *Hehe* We then said a simple prayer before 'asking' all 'uninvited guests' to please vacate the house. *BOOOooo ...*
We then busied ourselves to prepare for dinner. Both our families were coming as well as a couple of YJ's and Bryan's friends. We cooked some and bought the rest. Our families helped as well. Mom prepared her signature chicken curry and helped with the dessert. Shaun made his trademark almond jelly while YJ whipped up an awesome raspberry and blueberry cheesecake. Sree made roasted chicken, yellow rice and fried up a very tasty dish of mixed vegetables. I made 'char siew', salad and coleslaw while Ah Yi added a fruit salad (which kicked my salad's ass) as well as a cheese dip that went along very well with crackers. We also ordered satay ... A LOT of satay and some ketupat to add on to the menu. Oh yea, we also had some nyonya kuih that added pretty colours to the food spread. Everyone enjoyed the sumptious meal except Shaun who couldn't make it due to work commitments. Ryan presented us with an ice bucket as a housewarming gift. He knew I was eyeing it at the Kitchen Shop previously. *Thanks bro*
We ate drank and be merry. By the time the party ended and we all helped with the cleaning, we were totally worn out and I slept like a log. Wifey had a little trouble adjusting to sleeping at our new home though.
When we woke up the next day, we vacuumed and mopped the entire house since we didnt do it the day before. Apparently we weren't suppose to clean up the 'luck' on the first day of moving in. :p
We re-heated up the balance of the food from the night before and wifey's family came by again to help us 'kautim' all those grub. Later that evening, we had a few friends from gym drop by to see our place. Ping arrived first while Sharon and Celest busied themselves shooting photos before we went to Madam Kwan's @ Empire Galery for dinner. After that, we walked around the mall for a bit before heading home.
I promised Wifey that I'll cook her a meal, so we went to Sunway Pyramid for grocery shopping at Giant Hypermarket. Lunch was at Canton-I and it wasn't long before we were home and I started preparing for dinner. Since there seemed to be quite a lot of food, wifey suggested we invite my family over to join us for dinner. Mom, Dad and Ryan took us up on the offer. Shaun couldn't make it again due to work. :(
Anyways, it was going to be a simple meal of soy sauce chicken, pickle veg soup, stir fried mix vegs and fried rice. Sounds easy and I'm sure it is for most people but it's the first time I'm cooking for five people ... so this is pretty huge for me. *haha*. The food turned out to be pretty okay, so I'm giving myself a pat on the back for that. *pat pat* For dessert, I made caramelised pear with honey and orange sauce and vanilla ice cream. Although it didn't exactly turn out the way it was supposed to, I reckon it wasn't half bad either. *keke*
Now here's the amazing part. Just before dinner time ... mom called to tell us they are going to be late. Apparently someone called and said he might know where Rain is. Here's the story. The day before, my dad was chatting with one of his client and the subject of Rain goine missing surfaced. So his client suggested that my dad check out Paws (a center for dogs and cats), just in case someone who found Rain might have brought him there. My dad went to Paws and met an elderly couple who enquired if my dad was there to adopt a dog. My dad told them bout Rain and soon the couple were describing Rain's looks. Apparently, their son had a friend who called the day before saying that there was a lost dog near my housing area. Someone had tied Rain to a lamp post hoping that its rightful owner would be able to come and claim him. By the time the couple's son went there after work, he said Rain wasn't at the lamp post anymore. The son's friend also took a photo of Rain and posted it on FB. My dad then asked for a copy of the photo to confirm that it is indeed our Rain. The next day, just as my family were getting ready to come over to our place for dinner, they received a call from the couple's son who said he might know where Rain is. My dad and Ryan met the young chap at a temple in SS13 and indeed they found Rain there :D Looks like it's all been fated as a string of coincidences miraculously led Rain back home to us. When we bought Rain ... it was raining heavily. When we lost Rain, it was raining heavily. When we found Rain, it was raining heavily. Hmmm ...
Anyway, suffice to say, everyone was really glad that four legged rascal is safely back home and dinner that night tasted especially delish!
The next day, we took things easy. We were suppose to head to Ikea to buy a serving tray and some stools but ended up spending a lot of moolah on so many other stuff. Everything is soooo tempting to buy there and it's excruciating to say 'no' to them. *Blehhh* Later that night, we made our way to Kepong for a friends' gathering at Eric's place. Although not the entire SASA gang was present, it was a good catch up session nonetheless.
On Saturday, we had our housewarming session with the same SASA gang. Good thing is more of them were able to make it this time around. The menu was almost identical to the food we had with our families before except this time, we had spring hoppers (putu mayam) instead of rice. I would like to think everyone had a jolly good time. We ate, drank and be merry. Got ourselves a couple of nice gifts as well. As our last guest left and we cleaned up the place, it was already past 3:00 a.m. It's been a while since wifey and I partied till the wee hours. O_O
Next morning, I went to church and was about to head home for lunch when Shaun called to say his car suffered from a tyre puncture. So after we both fixed his tyre, I got him over as well for lunch and we were joined by Ah Yi's sister and family. We polished the leftover food from the night before. Haha ... not good to waste food ma.
We barely had time to digest before we made our way to Lemon Garden @ Shangrila Hotel for a scrumptious buffet dinner with my family. The food spread was nothing short of splendid and we makan makan makan. *nom nom nom* This time, it was wifey who overstuffed herself but who could blame her ... the food was THAT good.
The next day, we ran some errands before I headed back to the sand pit. Till my next trip home ...
P.S. Photos for all the above will be on my FB :)