Thursday, December 13, 2012

It can't rain forever...

Yes I have been in hiatus for a while.  The fourth quarter of this year has been tough for us, but so far we have managed, and thus the long silence. 
At the onset of the fourth quarter, hubby got flu. So between taking care of him and trying to stay healthy too because of the growing baby inside my tummy, I think it was just too much for me that unfortunately I got the bug as well.  (Hirap kasi sa abroad, there is no help and you have to do everything.  Living in a first world country does have its conveniences but home is where the comfort still is) I have to stay at home for 3 days because I can only take the mildest of medicine.  And to make matter worse, we receive news from home that my mother-in-law passed away. 
 I wanted to go back to be a support for hubby at one of the darkest period of his life (he is very close to his mom) but I was having high fever, and doctor’s advice and my family and friends’ suggestion to the best interest of the baby ‘s health and me is to just stay put.  I know the agony that hubby has to put up with to be torn between the two women of his life.  I assured him I would be alright and that he does not need to worry about me.  After a few days of rest, and lots of fluid, I recovered, while hubby was back in the Philippines making funeral arrangements for Mama Oping.
Just when we were recovering from all those blows, after Sunday service early November, I felt a sudden pain in left side of my tummy.  I brushed it aside as just the normal pregnancy pains and discomfort.  Monday came; I was just trying to bear the pain.  I do have very high tolerance of pain.  Good thing Tuesdays I work from home so I do not have to commute to work, so I still bear the pain.  Wednesday came; I knew it was something not normal anymore because even with just one single step I would cry in pain.  Thursday, we went to see my OB.  The reason for the pain was the degenerating fibroid.  I knew I have fibroids early on my pregnancy because my doctor saw it during the first ultra sound I have.  It is about 7cm by 6cm in size. 
Fibroid are benign (non-cancerous) growths present in 30% of women over the age of 30.  Very large fibroids even if silent (meaning hindi cya masakit and not a threat to the pregnancy) are inclined to undergo a process called "degeneration", an event which occurs if the enlarging fibroid outgrows its blood supply. Not receiving sufficient oxygen, the cells of the fibroid die, causing abrupt, severe pain and tenderness.  That was what I have experienced.  I was ordered by my doctor to bed rest for 7 days and asked to take a hormone pill every night to avoid premature contractions.  Up till now I am still taking my hormone pill because of a “slight” problem with my cervix according to my OB.  It’s close but it slightly opens and closes again….“Bumubuka buka”.  So now I am just following doctor’s order to avoid walking too much and carrying heavy things.  My next check-up would be on the 22nd of December.  Hopefully all would be well now.   
There are still some blows we experienced, but I think I would not be mentioning all of them in this post already, this post have too much negative vibes.
We receive blows that knock us down, but if I may quote the well-loved Filipino boxer Manny Pacquio “Don’t worry. We will rise again”
With all those things that have happened to us, it has helped me to see pregnancy and parenthood at a different light.  Yes the big fibroid in my tummy is ugly, but I know I am carrying a beautiful baby.  And yes the world can be unfair and tough, but we will do our best as parents to let our little beanie experience life and love.  Hubby and I echo the worlds of the Psalmist when he says “But the LORD has become my fortress, and my God the rock in whom I take refuge.” Psalms 94:22
While the challenges and struggles still continues, we will put all these things behind us as reminders of how we can rise above it if keep our unity and love as partners and our full confidence and trust in God.
My next post would be a happier note.  We are preparing beanie’s sleeping area this weekend! I’m excited!!!


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hard Rock Hotel @ Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore

The plan was to go on a three day holiday here

and just simply laze the days away as we savor the moment that we have finally reached 1 year of togetherness....But due to unforeseen but very welcome circumstances, we opted to cancel the travel plan.  But an important milestone cannot  be just  celebrated at home, so Hubby and I decided to have a staycation.  We are staycations fanatics, as you can see from here and here.  And this time round, we booked a one night stay at Hard Rock Hotel Resorts World Sentosa.

Hard Rock Hotel Singapore received the Gold Award for: Best 5 in Asia in the Category of HAPA Signature Deluxe Hotel. The hotel's tag line is "Rock and roll attitude meets five-star service"  True to its word it's rock and roll attitude all right with pictures of rock and roll stars and other pop stars decorating the place.

I was kind of weirded out though by the pictures hanged above the bed, I felt like someone was watching us while we were sleeping.  Ha ha ha, just making it obvious that I am not a rock and roll fan.  However, i love the sitting nook by the window.  It was cozy and comfy and the view from our window was the pool.  Love it!

our headboard have pictures of the beatles and others I don't actually recognize..hehehe

pool view from our room
Consistent with the rock and roll theme, even the bathroom toiletries are charmingly placed inside a small box designed to resemble a guitar. I find it cool despite me being void of rock and roll vibes in my body :)

The overall stay was A-OK.  Probably I was not very impress kasi nga, I'm not a rock and roll fan.  But the pool was another story.  I am inlove with it.  It is huge, with a pool bar!  One side of it was made to make it appear like a beach, they filled it with white sand with few coconut trees dotting the sides of the pool.  It was like you are transported to some island get-away. 

getting ready for an early morning swim

hubby contemplating by the pool ;) 
Yes, despite cancelling the Phuket trip, we celebrated our anniversary in style.  Hard Rock Hotel baby!  But the best part of it was that we did not spend a single dime for our stay (sans our dinner and breakfast of course (since the price was not inclusive of a buffet breakfast, that is my best part pa naman of staying in a hotel ...sadness). 
As an advocate of the good life for less, I scoured the hotel deals at, and fortunately was able to get a discounted rate of 50% off.  Cool!  And then, I offsetted the remaining balance from my company benefit of a healthy lifestyle.  Total price = $0 sgd.  How cool is that?  Healthy lifestyle indeed!
The best things in life do come by for free... and what makes it priceless?  That I was spending it with the love of my life.  Ahhhh bliss.   And now thats what I call a good life.
How about you,  what are some tips  you can share to live a good life for less?  This frugal wifey and momma to be would love to know.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Nesting Already? :)

I think my nesting period is starting to kick in quite early.  I have suddenly felt the urge to be organized.  The site of clutter gives me headache…No wonder I am having headaches more frequently now ;)

Pregnancy experts say the cause of the nesting instinct is both physical and emotional. A woman’s hormones during pregnancy are responsible for the most of the nesting instinct, and residual survival instinct is responsible for the rest. The nesting instinct can be observed in all pregnant mammals as they prepare for birth.  Well I'm mammal after all.  :D
Now I have three projects in mind. I want to rearrange our room, get ready the baby’s room and buy me a Moses basket.  Yah, yah I know the Moses basket is way too early.  But I stumbled upon Frances Sales blog and saw her cute baby boy snuggled inside his Moses basket.  Just adorable...  So I think if I buy me a Moses basket, baby beanie (aka Jasmon) would look equally adorable too. Ha ha ha… 

Here are some inspirations I have for our bedroom:
I want it clean and simple, criteria should have a nightlamp at the side for my late night readings.

                                                       I like the lamps and the paintings above

                                                 Again clean and crisp with the night lamps J

 Ideas for baby room and my Moses Basket ;)  Dream dream dream…I’m always dreaming…
                                                          Loving the Japanese latterns

                                        Space maximized is really appreciated in cramp Singapore ;)

                       I don’t like the predominant brown color though.  But I like its compactness.

Jasmon, whether you are girl or boy, you will look simply adorable snuggled inside one of these baskets J LOVE

 We will start the cleaning this weekend!  Of course I’m on boarding hubby with my nesting J

Ahhh happiness is a loving husband!
How about you any interesting nesting experiences you would like to share?  I would love to hear about it :).



Tuesday, October 2, 2012

We are expecting!

When I found out I was pregnant, it sent a flurry of emotions all over my body.  I felt nervous, excited, surprised, scared, delighted, overwhelmed all at the same time.  When the pregnancy test came out with two red lines, I was excited to tell the news!  But I was also hesistant because of this morbid fear that if I miscarry, I don't have to retract the announcement and save me from the unspoken or spoken sympathy that might be offered to me.  Yeah I told you its morbid :)  But anyways, we are on to our 13th week! Yay!  And according to experts and numerous articles I have read on the net, the likelihood of miscarriage has dropped significantly.

Since I have not let you in the news, allow me now to tell you how I find out about this little beanie inside me....

I was in denial stage.  My inner gut feel was seriously suspecting that I was pregnant. My period was delayed. Not just fashionably late but really late.  And I never missed a period.  But as I was on denial stage (with so many plans ahead, baby for this year was not really included, we were hoping for it to arrive by 2013), so I just blame it to stress and other stuff.
But then my gut feel did not stop nagging me, that I finally asked hubby to buy me a home pregnancy test kit.  I waited for a couple of days before I used it. Very early in the morning, first try two red lines.  Is this real?!? Did I follow the instructions correctly?  Hmmm I went back to sleep as I do not want to disturb hubby who is sleeping so soundly.  When I woke up again at 5:30, I used the remaining kit and did a test again.  2 red lines… This has to be it, I lay beside hubby and when he stirred I told him I was pregnant.  Though he was still a bit sleepy he looked silly happy when he heard the news.  I on the other hand was still unconvinced.
The following day, hubby and I went to the local pharmacy to buy another pregnancy kit.  2 red lines…And I asked hubby to use the other kit to test on him (hahaha I know it is silly, but I was not convinced, maybe his would also show two red lines LOL).  One red line for hubby, ok the kit is reliable.  And so that means that yes I am going to be a mommy soon! 
I was happy, but scared.  I “sms” my mom and sister and told them about the news.  I know they will relay to my brother and SIL.  Yes I am happy scared.  I know with this gift comes responsibilities.  I know that gone are the carefree days of mindless eating out, impulse shopping and on the whim travels.  I know we are entering a new chapter of our lives.  And soon we will take on a new role.  Yes we will become parents soon!  A little one would now depend his existence on his parents.  I am happy.  I am scared.  I am moody.  I am crazy, bursting into tears for no reason.  And I am also always hungry.   

But when I saw beanie (which by the way we have nicknamed Jasmon courtesy of my niece Reeze) for the first time, with his tiny hands as if waving to his parents and his heart beating, an unexplainable feeling of joy enveloped me.

I guess this is pregnancy, the good, the bad, the ugly.But yes, it is a truly beautiful experience that I am relishing now.
How about you, how did you find out you were expecting?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

A life well lived

As I rush from one task to the next.  Catching the next train and running after the bus, answering an email while paying online bills, I stop and reflect on my life.  I am living a life well lived, or is everything just a blurry of things to be accomplished so I can tick items off from my “to do” list?
Why the sudden reflection of a life well lived?  I read this story from unknown author, probably you have read it too because it is widely circulated in the World Wide Web, the story of the Mexican fisherman… And the story goes like this.
The businessman was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The businessman complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while.
The businessman then asked why he didn't stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs. The businessman then asked, but what do you do with the rest of your time? The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos; I have a full and busy life, señor."
The businessman scoffed, "I am a Harvard MBA and I could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats; eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the processor and eventually open your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City where you would run your expanding enterprise."
The Mexican fisherman asked, "But señor, how long will this all take?" To which the businessman replied, "15-20 years." "But what then, señor?" The businessman laughed and said, "That's the best part! When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions." "Millions, señor? Then what?" The businessman said, "Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."
The fisherman, still smiling, looked up and said, "Isn't that what I'm doing right now?"
Well a life well lived would be, it seems to me is appreciating what you have.  While it’s not bad to plan for the future, but it is another thing if we are foregoing living in the present for the future.  Possessions and wealth are not enough.  While comforting, it cannot fulfill everything.  A life well lived is love and happiness in abundance.  Acknowledging that love is not a feeling but a verb is to show the people that matters most to you that you love them.  And happiness is in having the realization of how blessed you are for what you have.  Not everything will be easy and turn out exactly how you planned it, but choose to be grateful for what you have and happy for that gift of your life.
As I go on with life adjusting and trimming it to become what I want my well lived life to be, my only hope and prayer is that I may not be drowned by the mundane things of life and the lure of “success” that every Jane, Mary and Harry are aimlessly striving for that I lose focus of what a well lived life is really about.
What is a well lived life for you?



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lessons I learned from my bucket of tears


Last night I cried buckets.  Yes literally buckets.  When I woke up this morning I looked like a nasty bee had stung my eyes.  Well good thing I was working from home today, so no one would give me the weird look of why I looked that way.
So why did I waste precious tears last night?  I was simply being unreasonable.  At least there are three things I learned I should stop doing because it is simply a waste of time.  It is as if I am wasting away my life.
1.       Throw out of the window the fear of missing out.  I live far away from mom and my siblings.  Every time I see them together, hear stories of what they have been doing, I feel a stab of pain.  Sadness, envy or I am simply missing them? I don’t know…..  I feel I am missing out on a lot of things.  But when my mom, would asked me to leave Singapore for good and come back to the Philippines, I cannot right away say yes, because I fear I might miss out of the opportunity I have here.  It’s silly really.  This feeling of being anxious because we are missing out on something.  But no matter how hard we try to do everything, travel around the world or simply work and have fun all day long we just could not simply do everything.  Nobody can be at two places at the same time right?  So the lesson learned…This is the moment and place that you are in.  It may not be perfect, but this is your choice.  Make the most of it.  Take a deep breath; enjoy and savor the moment you have.  Be in the now. 

2.       Erase that picture of how you think life is supposed to be.  Goals and plans are good.  It gives you direction and focus.  And as what the law of attraction says, painting a mental picture of the things you want to achieve will cause the forces of the universe to conspire until ultimately you will get what you want.  While I don’t think this is all entirely an abracadabra formula, however we should strike a balance.  When I was younger I have a clear picture of what I want, of things I want to accomplish, of goals I want to reach.  I even knew that I wanted a house with white picket fences, not brown but white and dog to match it.  But fast forward two decades later, I live in an HDB flat, no dog, no white picket fences, but window grills to make sure I don’t fall off from the 12th floor of the 15th story building I am living.  But I do have a roof above my head, a comfortable bed and hot water for my early morning showers.  

Yes we discover detours along the way, a lot of detours.  And what we have envisioned things would be turns out to be how things are supposed to be in real life.   Lesson learned?  We cannot choose the music that life plays, but we can always adjust our dance step to go with the beat of the music being played.   

3.       You are not perfect. Nobody is so stop berating yourself for not being one.  Don’t be too hard on yourself.  Life is already hard as it is without you conniving with it.  As a wife, a full time career woman and wannabe blogger, I want to do everything.  I want to be able to deliver quality work.  I want to have a spick and span home.  I want to  cook fantastic dishes for hubby.  I want to do music and craft.  And on top of all these, I want to look polished and vibrant all the time.  So what happens to me?  I end with my bee stung eyes, running nose and disheveled hair.  Lesson learned?  Love yourself and be proud of what you do.  Own your mistakes and be proud of it.  Why? Because it simply shows you are trying. 

How about you, any lessons learned from your silliness lately?  At least we learned yah? That’s what’s important.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Appreciating the gift of marriage...

1 year! Yes we celebrated our one year anniversary last September 10, 2012.  The plan was to go on a holiday to Phuket Thailand, but because of circumstances that I would share to you soon, we opted to cancel the trip and instead booked for a staycation in one of the resort hotels here in Singapore.  We stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel at Resorts World Sentosa.  I will let you know the details of how we celebrated our anniversary on another post.  This post is purely an appreciation for God’s gift of marriage.
I often hear clamors of married people of their regrets on marriage.  And sometimes hearing it from Christian friends makes me sad.  Not sad about the institution of marriage, but saddened about how they view marriage.  Yes marriage brings about challenges.  And it’s definitely not a bed of roses.  But having said that, I still believe that it is a very beautiful gift we received from our creator.  If only we appreciate the gift and take care of it then we can truly see it for it’s worth.
What blessings spouses enjoy when they truly love each other and never let pride, the childish silent treatment, or other unchristian traits mar their marriage!  I am no marriage expert and I don’t have a long record of married years under my belt, but there are two things I truly believe that every married couple should consider to make their marriage truly a blessing. ..
Love and respect... So work hard to make your marriage mate feel secure. By your loving words and respectful actions, look for ways to reassure your hubby or ‘wifey’ that to you, he or she is the most important person on earth. To the extent that it depends on you, do not let anyone or anything come between you and your mate.
During our wedding, the elder (as what we call pastors in our church) read us a bible verse at Genesis 2:24 “A man will leave his father and his mother and he must stick to his wife.”  What does that mean? Former ties to friends and relatives have to be adjusted. Each mate must first give the other his or her time and attention. Friends and relatives can no longer take priority at the expense of the new family; nor should the couple allow parents to interfere in family decisions or disagreements. The couple must now stick to each other. That is God’s direction. 
I may sound very biblical in this post, but after all the originator of marriage is God himself and it is wise indeed for us to heed his guidelines.
How about you, what is your view regarding marriage?  How do you appreciate the gift of marriage?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Ditch the guilt - Travel!

Ditch the guilt!  And that’s my take on travelling. Well you can read all the books in the world about “those” places but being there is an entirely different story.  I can describe the city of Dumaguete and its amazing beaches and its historic sites to you, but you really have to see it for yourself to experience it. 
I can give you a narrative account of how efficient the transport system is and how ingenious the government has done in transforming a small almost concrete covered island state of Singapore into a bustling and vibrant Garden City.  But still nothing compares to being there and being wowed by it.
As I walked the streets of Bangkok, I realized how rich and diverse different cultures of the world can be.  And I realized that delicacies are not only confined to caramel covered cashew nuts but also are crisp fried bugs and beetles.
I used to think that my hometown boasts of having the most number of motorcycles roaming around the city, till I bravely crossed a street in Hanoi.
Yes travelling brings about adventure.  An opportunity for us to disconnect from our regular life and amazingly with that it helps us to understand and figure out things that we would not have understood without the distance that travelling gives.
It brings about new experiences and increases our resourcefulness.  We learn creative ways of doing ordinary things.  At the same time it increases our knowledge and widens our perspective.  It humbles us, and makes us realize how insignificant we are as compared to the grandiose of the world. 
Travelling affords me to learn about myself that I didn’t know before.  I could be very patient and daring you know ;) I figured out a lot of stuff by actually doing it (riding and elephant for one) and I learned to appreciate what I had, and not focused on what I didn’t have.
And what I especially like about travelling is that long after you have paid for that not so cheap air ticket, the memories of your travel lingers.  It lasts a lifetime.
Yes I still have a lot of places to see.  It’s a wide, exciting and colorful world out there I have yet to experience.   Yes it does burn a whole in my pocket, but you get to learn to be creative and prudent through proper planning and thorough research.  But one thing I’m certain that after I come back from each and every trip, I never felt sorry I took that trip.  On the contrary I always think where my next trip would be the second I come back from the airport.

How about you what’s your take on travelling?  What benefits do you derived from it?


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Be here...NOW

Last week, I blogged, or rather I blabbered about how frenzied I have become.  Jumping from one task to the next, without actually completing a thing! At the end of the day, I become so tired, irritable, and so unproductive. 
Fortunately, I stumbled upon a blog that I find very informative and inspiring, the working mom journal.  Though I am not a working mom YET J I am bookmarking it for future reference.    The article I enjoyed reading was “Staying Effective While Juggling a Busy Schedule”.  Like the author, I am juggling multiple roles.  Aren’t we all? 
Most of the time, the roller coaster ride we experience from trying to manage everything leaves us emotionally, physically and mentally drained.  So how does one stay effective while the world around us spins continuously with all its bustling excitement?   Two words… “Being present” 

Today, I tried to follow the advice and did my best to be present.  Be in the moment so to speak.  And yes, it was effective for me.  I was able to complete several tasks and tick off a lot of things to do in my list.  I felt great and in control.  I tried my best to be fully conscious of what I was doing and my mind was clear and focused.  I was able to work decisively and work more effectively and efficiently.
And to quote Buddha ““The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
How do you strive to be present amidst the chaos of everyday living?



Friday, September 7, 2012


My mind is a mess.  I cannot concentrate on one job.  I super multi-task to the point of being unproductive.  I need to put order in my chaotic life.  A few months ago I was talking about how frenzied I live my life but appearing to be calm on the surface.  Just like a duck.  But now, I think I cannot do that.  The disorder inside is showing to reveal outside.  I need to be calm and collected again.  I have to have a proper priority list.  I need to have proper scheduling.  I need to simplify and be organized.  Yes for my sanity and productivity sake.
As I am juggling multiple roles and taking on additional ones, I now need to be a more organized person.  There are so many things I want to achieve.  So many things I want to excel.  But the so many things around me just consume my time.  I am writing this in my blog, not to exude negative vibes, but to begin a journey, a journey to excellence.  Excellence as how I define it.  The goal is not to be perfect or a superwoman but to be completely calm and not frenzied.
Where do I start?  I have no idea.  Where will I begin? I do not have the answers.  I have been “googling” and blog hopping, hoping to get ideas, but the more my mind gets cluttered.
Any tips for me?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The goal

Or rather the goals :)

Last night while I was on the bus ride on the way to our meet, a suddenly out of nowhere thought occured to me which I posted on my FB status. I want to get fit. Spiritually, physically and financially fit.

They say that random thoughts are actually what you really desire deep inside. Actually I have lots of plans (big, enormous, small… name it I have it). I keep on thinking of such lofty goals but sadly I don’t have the drive to fulfill them. Yes such a loser! :(  But I want to break free from that cycle…

Yes I have GOALS and I will do my best to achieve them!!!

Yes, will get there ;)......

What are your goals?  May we continue to be inspired by our goals....

Thursday, June 21, 2012

St. John's Island - an escape from the hustle bustle of the mainland

With yet another attempt for us to get-away from the hustle and bustle of city living without having to leave the country,  with a few friends, we decided to have a short get-away to one of the Southern Islands of this tiny island state (Yes, this tiny islands is surrounded by other tiny islands ;).
St. John Island, previously known as Pulau Sakijang Bendera, is one of the Southern Islands in Singapore. It is located approximately 6.5 km to the south of the main island of Singapore, off the Straits of Singapore.
There are a number of holiday bungalows and a holiday camp located on the island to cater for those in need of a short break away from their hectic lives on the mainland.
The island has a much colorful history than simply being a holiday destination. It is formerly housed a quarantine station for cholera cases detected among immigrants in the late 19th century, and starting from 1901, victims of beriberi were also brought to the island. By 1930, the island gained world recognition as a quarantine center screening Asian immigrants and pilgrims returning from Mecca. The quarantine station was eventually also used to house victims of other diseases, such as leprosy. When mass immigration was closed in mid-20th century, the island was used to house a penal settlement and a drug rehabilitation center. The 40.5-hectare hilly island was transformed in 1975 into a tranquil getaway with swimming lagoons, beaches, picnic grounds, trekking routes and soccer fields.  –source-
Despite its “colorful” history, we manage to have a good time.  Rustic life I should say but after all it’s not the place but the company you are with.  Here are some of the pictures we too from our short get-away
welcome to St. John's

boat ride

get away with friends

vanity at the beach

an early morning stretch

i believe i can fly!!!
They also say, that the island boasts of marvelous reefs and marine life in Singapore…Hmmm this I have yet to see…Maybe till next visit…

But you may check this blog as proof of that amazing marine life in talking about

Any short island get-away recently? :)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

A mountain getaway

Hubby and I scored yet another deal from deal sg (unfortunately ,no, deal sg is not giving me free deals for all the plugging I do) Ha ha ha But nevertheless…
To continue on with my story, one fine weekend on the Month of April we set of for yet another short get-away.  This time we headed to Malaysia’s highest point accessible by road, Cameron Highlands.  At 5,000 feet above sea level, the temperature during the day seldom rises above 25®C and can drop to as low as 12®C.
The coach ride from Singapore was approximately around 9 to 10 hours! But the magnificent view of tea plantations blanketing the undulating hills; the crisp and refreshing coolness of the mountain breeze was all it takes for me to forget about the long and winding ride.

a carpet of green as far as your eyes can see

For the nature and Agro lover, at Cameron, a variety of activities awaits you.  We only have the weekend to explore the highlands and we wanted to make the most of our stay.  We booked with one of the pioneer in the travel industry in the highlands, Titiwangsa Tours.  We booked their Nature Discovery Tour and the Agro Delight Tour.

After checking in Equatorial Cameron Highlands, we joined the Nature Discovery Tour.  First stop was a drive up the highest point of Cameron Highlands – Mount Brinchang at a height of 6666 feet above sea level.  It is one of the mountains in Malaysia where its summit can be reached by road. Due to easy accessibility, this mountain enjoys many visitors all year round. The observation tower at the summit enables tourists to enjoy the breathtaking view of Titiwangsa Mountains from the summit.  The weather wasn’t so cooperative with us that day.  I still did the climb, too bad for me, my climb did not reward me with a breathtaking view because it was a very foggy morning but well at least I can live to tell that I climb the observation tower from the summit ;).

weather was not too cooperative. a foggy view :(
A short trek into the mossy forest was next in the list.  Be prepared to get dirty.  But all the crawling and wadding in the mossy ground is worth it.
eerie but beautiful
 Next stop was a visit to the renowned “BOH” Tea factory.  We learned the full process of how tea is made.  It made me appreciate the bittersweet beverage more ;)  Then we went to the café to have a boh tea drinking experience while enjoying a view of a giant green carpet against the azure blue skies.

In the afternoon after a quick nap at the hotel, we joined our second tour for the day – the Agro Delight Tour.   Hubby being an agriculturist by qualification enjoyed this tour very much.  We were taken to an exotic cactus farm
my mom would have love this :) cactus, cacti big and small

And then to a strawberry farm where self picking of strawberries where allowed.  They give us a container which we are to fill up (around half a kg) (30RM if a remember correctly) .  If you harvest more than the ½ kg, you have to pay the extra.  Hmmm good marketing strategy I tell you.  Because when you are in there, you get so fascinated with the strawberries that you just pick and pick to your heart’s content.
hubs happy with his bounty

enjoying the picking
Then we stop by a water-cress farm, some organic farm, hydroponics farming of lettuce.  It was such a delight.  And the last stop was a beautiful flower nursery.  We had to climb the muddy hill (told you earlier that the weather was not so cooperative, it rained and shined and rained and shined that day).  But the climb was worth it was we feast our eyes on the lovely blooms.

lovely rose

pretty blooms

tuwang tuwa si mister

organically grown veggies
 The tour ended with a sumptuous  steamboat dinner of fresh vegetables.  Yum yum J

the veggies tasted sweeter and crispier...or was I just too hungry? ;)
 As there are not much night happenings in Cameron, after a game of pool with hubby at the hotel lobby, we decided to call it a day for we know that we have a long and winding ride back to SG the next day.

We woke up refreshed (must be the fresh air, no air conditioner in the hotel, guess they save on their electricity bills) and had a hearty breakfast.  And that was the end of our refreshing mountain getaway.   

Do try visit the highlands, it a nice and refreshing welcome if you are so used to the hurried bustle and hustle of city living. 

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