Thursday, January 31, 2013

Gardening in an apartment 30 September 2012

Some flower buds finally grew on the cherry tomato plants! :) It was almost 3 months since we planted it from the seeds.

It grew to about 3 feet high. Next to the cherry tomato plant is sweet basil. We have harvested it for making pesto and the leaves grow again. :)

 We are constantly suprised by the tiny plants grown out from the compost soil. 
I think it is a pumpkin seedlings. We don't have enough space for a pumpkin to grow. 

Mini composting bin. 

We are so thrilled to find the cherry tomato plant is fruiting after almost 4 months!

When it turned red, we were jumping with joy! 

Spring onion is the easiest to plant. :)

The pandan is beginning to grow. 
It was almost dead after we brought it back from R's home, and was left with a few leaves.  

J.W.W Birch Memorial Clock Tower, Ipoh Perak 16 October 2012

I came here after our discussion on the murder of J.W.W Birch, the first British resident of Perak at Teluk Intan while we were there last month. 

A close-up look of the mural around the tower. 
So, my older kid asked "Is JWW Birch a good guy?"

The old buildings near the clock tower. 

Geology Museum Ipoh, Perak 16 October 2012

Can you see the visiting hours? 
Mon - Thur 830am to 1230pm. 2pm to 5pm
Fri 830am to 12pm. 3pm to 5pm
Closed on weekends and PH. 
Free entrance. At Lorong Hariman.

I came here solely because my children love precious stones. 

Besides the exhibition on tin ore and collection of fossils, stones and minerals, there are also some tools and equipments on display. 

Nine Emperor Gods Festival, Tow Boh Keong Temple, Ipoh Perak 15 October 2012

We arrived Ipoh on the first day of Nine Emperor God Festival and decided to take a peek on how the celebration is done at Tow Boh Keong, a Taoist temple at Jalan Tokong. As I drove onto Jalan Tokong, the road was congested by cars parked along the road on both side. As I drove on, a man signalled me to park at an empty slot by the road side. Without much hesitation, I took the offer just so I could get off the car and relieve my aching legs after a 2 hour plus drive. 
When my children and I got off the car, the same man requested me to get a pack of incense sticks for RM5.     I wasn't sure if it is cheap but I took a pack from him, in return for his favour.

Tow Boh Keong 05 - 241 4042

There were a a big group of people making pau (bun) at both side of the front entrance.  

The bright pink colour pau caught the attention of my little kiddo. These pau were seen as offering to the Nine Emperor Gods. 

There were nine lights lit up, tied to the pole, right on top.

The observation on the praying ceremony was an eye-opener for both my kids and I. The only thing I know of this festival is, it will surely be raining on this day. That's what my mom told me. And so, I told my kids what my mom has told me.  

It was so smoky inside the temple that my children ran in and out of the temple, trying to avoid the smoke and watching the believers doing their ritual at the same time. It is funny seeing them running in and out. In the midst of that, I randomly asked two women which ones are the Nine Emperor Gods. They stared at me blankly and turned to the many statues of great god and deities. Then, they replied " I don't know!!!"  


Two pieces of crescent moon shape wood that the believers pray with and throw on the floor. 
Watch the video above.

There will be a chinese opera performance every night at 8pm during the Nine Emperor Gods Festival. 
Here we were waiting for the show to start. 

While watching the show, I recalled watching it when I was younger. I didn't understand much of what they sang and yet, the whole performance was so captivating.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

FRIM nature walk "Aliens" with MNS 13 October 2012

Leaves of Camphor tree. 
The older one commented it smells like tiger balm whereas my younger one here, said 'basil'.
We were told that the wood of Camphor tree has a strong nicer fragrant and it is sold at Daiso.
 This is the only tree that originated from Japan over in FRIM.

 Ming, a botanist and MNS nature guide of our group.

Trumpet tree came from tropics America. Its leaves look like an umbrella and it is very similar to our local tree, Mahang. Fruit is small and is very popular among the bats which helps to spread the seeds. 

Dumbcane is a popular house plant and it is commonly seen. Little did I know that should our lips are in contact with the sap will cause one to be not able to talk for a day or two!

Bougainville's flower is just the small white one in the center. The pink colour part is a modified leaf called bracts. Interesting!

Hibiscus originates from China and it is known as China Rose! 

  Adancum piper (pepper) plant is one of the top 100 most invasive plants. There is a whole plantation of it at Guang Nuang. A crushed leaf will help in stopping bleeding when it is rubbed on the wound.

This tree here is dubbed as "Malaysia Sakura". It produces pink flowers during Chinese New Year season and lasted only one to two days. 

Acacia Mangium is also one of the top 100 most invasive plant here.
The photo in the middle shows its branch and its twig, which look like a leaf! 
The twirly one is the fruit. 
The bark is rough and mostly not healthy and could tumble easily as the tree is not suitable for Malaysia climate. 
The tree is planted for paper but it doesn't produce good quality ones

.  My older kid chasing after Ming and talking to her. 
Seriously, children doesn't need a school setting with hundreds of people to be able to socialise.  

Caine's Arcade Global Day of Play 6 October 2012

When I read about this event, I am so sure my children would love to be part of it. They love boxes. In fact, I think all children love boxes, if only their parents allow them to play with it.  I showed her the video above and explained how it works, build your games out of box, group together with other kids from CLIC (Cooperative Learning Initiative Centre, read here) , invite people to play and the fund goes to Imagination Foundation. Without much hesitation, they said "YEAH".

The walking ticketing machine. :)

In a flash, she thought up a game and set to work. 

Her initial idea was 10cent per game and RM1 for a "fun card" that entitles to unlimited play.
The customer have to insert the money into the box and a ticket would be issued. (check the video).
As I am not sure how exactly the payment system work at CLIC, I told her to "prepare for changes and see how to adapt to it. Life is full of changes"  
At CLIC, they have a standardized payment of RM1 = 2 tokens. 
After discussing with my child, she adjusted her ticket booth to 1 token = 1 game, 2 token for a fun card.
I thought the inserting of token and waiting for the ticket to be slotted out of the box idea is slow. It turned out to be fun for the children-customers. They love looking at the ticket being slotted out!

Measure your height here. 
She said " she doesn't want to make any child cry" and so, her height measurement started from 0 which also means everyone get to play. 

The height measurement corresponds with the measurement on the floor. The customer has to stand where his/her height is.
Customer is given 5 balls. Each successful throw will get to choose a sticker.

The game attracted a crowd. By 12pm, she was exhausted.

The little toddler was one of the loyal customer. :) She was waiting for her stickers.

The busy arcade.

Food in Teluk Intan, Perak 30 September 2012

We followed this blog link to explore Teluk Intan's food.  We personally like the food recommended especially Liew Kee's chee cheong fun. 

My young kid watched the making of chee cheong fun intently while we lined up in a queue.

You can pre order the chee cheong fun at night and collect the next morning to take home.

As we went about exploring the town, we met a lot of down to earth and kind Teluk Intan folks! Such heart-warming town this is. 

Leaning tower of Teluk Intan, Perak 30 September 2012

The leaning tower light up at night and changes colour as well.
The kids were so looking forward to seeing this similar tilted tower as leaning tower of Pisa. 
It is located at Teluk Intan town itself. You wouldn't miss it.

We came again in the morning.
If you look up the tower, the water tank that was originally housed is visible. It was used to supply water to the town area.

Tue to Fri 8am - 5pm
Sat, Sun and PH 9am - 6pm
Closed on Monday.
There is no entrance fee needed.

There are 110 steps altogether but we could only climbed 53 or 55 steps which I have forgotten.

It is locked up half way through.

This is the exterior platform. 
There are so many Malaysia flags hanging around it that we have to bend down to take a look outside.