Wednesday, 25 July 2018

5 simple ways to worry less and stay positive

THINK POSITIVE! Oh what a cliche it seems, doesn't it? Easy to say, yet difficult to fulfil for many out there. And yes, of course including myself at times too. I have my times of anxiety and stress, and wallowing myself in negativity isn't helping a single bit. Here are some little tips to help yourself feel better! While I may not be an expert in this field, these have helped me felt better at times, and I hope that it will help you too.

Note down the things you are grateful for

A friend of mine taught me about this, she asked me to write down the things I am grateful about, including all the small things no matter how insignificant it may seem. It might seem like a really simple idea, but this helps to remind myself of how I should be thankful for the little happy things in life, and any worries or obstacles are just temporary. When you're grateful, you tend to complain less too.

If you are feeling artistic, you can even write down happy notes, roll it up and place it in a mason jar! Adds as a decorative element to your room too.

Find bits and pieces of joy

When things are tough once in awhile, people always tell you to think positive. But thinking positive sounds kinda vague, don't you think so? Find some joy in your life, depending on what works for you. Cheap thrills, games, shopping, and whatsoever. For me, food is one of the biggest motivation ever. So lets say if I am really busy on that day, I would reward myself with my favourite cravings like Pokebowl! At least this makes me happier at a small cost.

But of course, every individual has different motivations, you'll have to find one and balance your happiness with it!

Recall redundant worries from the past

When was the last time you had a panic attack about something which was solved in no time?

That's right! Recall those moments and tell yourself that there is actually not much to worry about as things will eventually sort its way out. This is a really effective method as it is a solid proof that you might just be too paranoid at times. #truestory

Be Prepared

Some people often neglect the importance of preparation, but it's actually a useful tip in building up confidence and thus overall positivity. List down the things you have to complete and also go through the steps mentally (if it is a complex issue). This allows you to take better control of the situation and be confident for it.

Of course, this only helps with anxiety/ worries/ panic attack but not so much when you're feeling sad. I guess my main issue is always over worrying hence this is one method that really helped me a lot! 

Look forward to your next excitement

If all else fails, just try to look forward to something happy over the next few hours, days or even weeks. Having something to look forward to makes it a lot easier to tide past the current difficulties, which makes you hang on there.

While this may not be applicable to everyone, I hope it can help you stay positive through your tough times!

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Som Tam at Orchard Central | Durian Curry, Mentaiko Squid and Instaworthy Drinks

Durian and Curry are both my well-loved flavours, but combining both into one dish? It's honestly my first. Curious, excited yet slightly doubtful were my reactions when I found out about the existence of Durian Curry at Som Tam, a modern Thai fusion restaurant located at Orchard Central.

But if you're not a fan of durians, don't click away first! Som Tam offers a promising range of mouthwatering Thai delicacies, and I'm not even kidding, they tasted fantastic!

The drinks already got us excited with such colourful and vibrant tones, perfectly ready for the 'gram. Phones come first, don't they?

From my previous experiences, sad to say,  I tend to have this impression that colourful drinks = overly sweet taste. But it wasn't the case for Som Tam. The drinks were pretty refreshing, especially the Blue Cha with Coconut ($6.80). It had a really similar taste to the freshly opened coconuts at Jumbo or Long Beach Seafood restaurants, except that this is way prettier. You can't go wrong with coconut drinks at a Thai restaurant most of the time.

Avocado's Shake ($7.80) was also on my favourite list. While the avocado taste was quite subtle, it was a great combination with a hint of chocolate syrup. I was still sipping on it at the end of the meal even though my tummy was almost filled to the brim.

Other hipster drinks include Rainbow Perrier Ice ($6.80) and Purple Rain ($6.80) which were equally instaworthy. I love how the ice cubes were so colourful!

Thai Souffles Steamed Egg ($10.80) looks like the simplest dish but what a surprise! The eggs had a hint of sweet and sour Tom Yum flavour but without the spiciness. Such a simple delicacy but easily one of my favourites of the day. If you find it a little too salty, I suggest mixing it with white rice.

Thai Style Grilled Squid with Mentaiko ($18.80) was topped with a generous amount of decadent mentaiko, resulting in a perfectly chewy texture and a creamy finish. I could really taste the mentaiko, unlike some places which don't give as much toppings. There's also a subtle spiciness to the mentaiko that adds on to the rich flavour of the dish.

Massaman Curry with Roti ($23.80) is quite a flavourful dish, and good to share between 2-3 pax. If you're hoping to enjoy a spicy dish, this might be a slight let down in terms of spiciness kick, but it would be great for those with lower spice tolerance. The curry is rich and fragrant, and most importantly, the chicken was very tender and I could easily tear the chicken apart for sharing.

I also didn't have to deal with the mess since the prata are all in bite sized portions. I highly recommend adding the salad to the prata and chicken as the sweet tangy sauce balances the curry really well, and adds some crunch to it.

Lastly, let's move on to the biggest star of the day - Black Chicken Curry with Musan King Durian ($26.80)! It's quite an unconventional and interesting combination to begin with, and it is rather difficult to even imagine the outcome of the taste. Accompanied by a huge dollop of durian paste, you can choose to mix it into the curry for a more distinct durian taste or leave it out if you prefer the milder flavours.

If you find this dish a little too quirky and slightly confusing, just see it as any other sweet and salty dishes. I was a little taken aback by how the two opposing flavours could blend so well together, creating a seamlessly delicious bowl of curry. No doubt it's an interesting and unique dish, but the taste got a little overwhelming towards the end of the meal, and I would suggest ordering this for sharing, perhaps leave it to the last so that the durian doesn't affect your palate for trying out other food.

Even if you're not really a fan of Durian, do give this dish a try! Who knows it might change your perception of durians!

Som Tam
Orchard Central
181 Orchard Road
Singapore 238896

P.S. This is a food tasting invite, but all opinions are of my own

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

LOFREE Four Seasons Mechanical Keyboard Review

Anyone else likes the typewriter sound like I do? Not sure if it's a strange fetish but I've always enjoyed listening to the sound of keyboard as I type away on my computer aggressively. #ASMR? 

Gone are the days when people use typewriters for typing documents. Inspired by this concept, the Lofree Four Seasons Mechanical Keyboard is cleverly designed to create a colourful and retro look to match with our tech gadgets in the modern days of the present. 

It comes in 4 seasonal colours - Aestival Blue (Summer), Autumnal Grey (Autumn), Hibernal Black (Winter) or Vernal White (Spring)(currently unavailable)which are simple and versatile with a touch of glamour. 

Before you doubt its usefulness, ask yourself: What is the amount of time you spend on mobile or computer gadgets daily?

Personally I would say, most of the time except for eating, sleeping, baking and going out. 

I tend to avoid using my phone at home, simply because it's a lot more inconvenient to type on such a small screen. I like how Lofree keyboard allows me to switch easily between multiple devices conveniently - including Mac, Android and Windows OS. It is especially helpful when I need to reply to my baking enquiries and have to type out a huge chunk of message! 

The layout of the keyboard is also designed similarly to a Mac built-in keyboard, which allows Apple users like me to adapt to the keyboard very quickly without trying to figure out the buttons.

In case you were wondering about the main difference between a normal keyboard and a Lofree Four Seasons keyboard other than the design itself, every single button contains Gateron blue switches, which requires lighter pressure to actuate the switch.
In other words, you don't have to strain your fingers repetitively when you type. And it's pretty sturdy too! #plusspoint!

Source: Lofree

The steps for bluetooth pairing is convenient and took me only one try to figure everything out, with special thanks to the instructions printed out on the wrapper. I'm prolly less willing to dig out the manual instead. 

I also prefer rounded corners/ circles over square-like buttons as they are more comfortable to type on, and also looks a lot more aesthetically pleasing to the eyes. 

The only thing I would love if it has an added function to slot in my phone or tablet at the front! But since I am mainly using it in my room, it wouldn't be an issue for me. 

Click HERE to enjoy 20% off your total order! 

or use promo code: FRIEND-ZQBXLLC

Friday, 6 July 2018

Pooltime Cafe at Bangkok | Playing with Raccoons

Bangkok is not short of unique animal cafes and Pooltime Racoon Cafe proved this point well! Obviously this has to be in my travel itinerary because I need to fill up my list of the different types of animals I have interacted with. Raccoons are not easily available anywhere else especially in Singapore so this was a rare opportunity for me to experience playing with Raccoons. Pooltime Cafe wasn't located near the popular areas, but Grab is really convenient and cheap, hence it wasn't really a problem for us. 

We arrived shortly after their opening hours and we might just be the first customers as it was completely empty. The theme was kept to minimalistic pink, blue and white colour tones and it was quite relaxing to chill at this cafe with a cuppa coffee. Judging by the lack of customers (not sure if its because of the non peak hours), this cafe is rather underrated in my opinion, and it could be due to the lack of online exposure as compared to other prominent cafes, such as the husky one. 

Even with such a sleek and simple marble design, instagram opportunities were not lacked of. I was quite surprised that bf ordered the Pooltime signature milkshake (150 baht) instead of his usual favourite - Iced chocolate. But that means YAY, more pretty photos for me isn't it? I never really fancied artificial coloring/ flavouring in my drinks so the taste was pretty normal, but thankfully it wasn't overly sweet like others. 

A single ticket costs 150 baht per person, and you get to play with the raccoons for about 15 minutes. If no one is waiting in line, they might extend the time for you. I was told by the FB admin that you are also allowed to requeue after 15 minutes of playtime and there won't be additional charges!

Looks like I've got a matching outfit! 

Pooltime Raccoon Cafe Menu

Due to safety and hygiene reasons, the raccoons are not allowed to roam around the cafe freely and there is a segregated play room for us to interact with them on the second storey.

We were also given some snacks to feed to the raccoons. It was rather difficult to snap a photo because they would snatch the food from your hands very quickly.

They are also really active and enjoy climbing around. Playful little raccoons! 

While it might not be as happening as some popular animal cafes, it is a really good experience for those who wants to interact with animals other than the usual dogs/ cats/ rabbits. Pooltime Cafe is also a cosy place to chill with your friends and of course, to take plenty of selfies. (We sppotted 2 girls sitting nearby and they were busy taking OOTDs in the cafe). Overall, it was an unique experience, and I'm just wondering why there were not a lot of people. 

Pooltime Cafe
582/11 Between Ekkamai 26-28 (Tai Ping Tower)
Bangkok, Thailand

+66 90 652 4109