Archive | Others RSS feed for this section

Healthy Banana Oatmeal Cookies

11 Nov

I have seen so many beauty gurus making these healthy cookies. To be honest, I’m not a person who eat healthy, but seeing how easy they are to make, I decided to give it a try.

Freshly Baked Banana Oatmeal Cookies

I searched online and customized my own recipe. To give the cookies some extra flavors, I added peanut butter and cinnamon powder. You can, of course, add other ingredients to enhance the flavor, such as honey, nuts, raisins and chocolate chips (evil little ingredients). So this is how I made them:

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 1/2 cup of instant oatmeal
  • 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (optional)
  • Cinnamon powder (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C.
  2. Peel the bananas and mash them in a bowl, until no chunks remain.
  3. Pour in your own choice of ingredients and instant oatmeal. Then mix well.
  4. Place a teaspoon on a lightly-oiled aluminum foil, and shape them as you wish.
  5. Bake them for 20 minutes and let them to cool after taking them out of the oven.

Volia! Don’t expect them to be like crispy and crunchy cookies; these cookies are soft and moist, and of course they are delicious and healthy.

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Advertisements

Book Recommendation

29 Oct

To be honest, I do not like to read, but recently I’m so free and thought “maybe I should do some reading”, and I would like to recommend this book “Why We Buy, The Science of Shopping” written by Paco Underhill.

Recommended to those who are in the Marketing, Retailing or PR industry, or generally anyone who’s interested in understanding more about shoppers.

“NEW” Fashion Online Shopping Website?!

24 Oct

I was browsing through Instagram and found this website Rowme.com. By looking at its website, it’s a fashion online shopping website similar to ASOS, and I’m guessing it should be based in China (by looking at its return address).

I was so excited to see another website that provides free shipping worldwide, and was just about to do some crazy shopping, especially with the 15% discount they provided while registered as a member. However, when I was looking through the T-shirt section, and found this T-shirt so familiar. I clicked in and…. oh yes, it’s exactly the same as my H&M t-shirt, which I bought 2 years ago.

Not sure about the service and quality, but I don’t think I would ever buy anything on this website. That t-shirt was originally priced at $26.99, definitely much more expensive than the one at H&M. I don’t have any experience buying things on this website, but just as a kind warning, things sold might be fake or an exact dupe from a well-known brand.

If anyone has bought anything through this website, please feel free to comment below and share your experience.

Movie Review: First Position

1 Apr

I’m definitely not a movie fan; I seldom go to the cinema, unless my friends invite me to or there’s a movie that I particularly want to watch, which is a rare thing. Therefore it’s very uncommon that I decided to go and buy a ticket to watch this film without accompany at all. I’m used to watching ballet performances or musicals on my own, but it’s the first time I ever went to a cinema on my own, and I can ensure you, it’s totally worthy.

I saw the trailer of First Position probably half a year ago, and was waiting for the release of their DVD, because these kind of movies normally won’t be on air in Hong Kong. Surprisingly, I saw one of my old ballet friends saying on Facebook that it’s going to be included in the Hong Kong International Film Festival this year, so I decided to check it out. I couldn’t find anyone to watch it with me because of the weird showing time, but I decided to watch it on my own anyhow, because there hasn’t really been a movie that only features ballet for a long time.

Billy Elliot and Center Stage are my favourite dance movies, and First Position is definitely going to be on my list! This documentary follows 6 talented young dancers while they compete at the Youth America Grand Prix, showing how they struggle and work very hard to succeed, hoping to get into the finals, win the competition, a scholarship or a place in a ballet company, and also showing their love and passion for dance.

Unlike other dance documentaries, I think this documentary gives you a picture of the reality but not all on the “dark” side. I remember seeing some ballet documentaries showing the painful process of dancing, little dancers crying because of the pain and being scold by teachers. Well, I know this is all true but this documentary does a better job and makes a balance between the “bright” and the “dark” side in the dancing world. On the other hand, some dance-related movies seem too commercial, focusing more on the plot and love relationship, while this documentary is based on the dancers’ true stories and focusing on ballet and dancing itself.

This documentary is full of laughter and tears. Happy moments like the cute little Jules, who tries very hard to jump high but often fails and falls down, and how his teacher covers his eyes after seeing him like that. Touching moments like Joan returning home after more than a year in the States and how his family fully supports him. Moments of struggle like how Michaela overcomes her pain during the competition. Well, there’s just too many awesome and memorable scenes, hard to name them all.

If you are a ballet fan, I’m sure you will love this documentary. For those who don’t know much about ballet and dance, do watch it if you have a chance, you will start to understand why so many people love ballet and understand the hardship and effort dancers have put into dancing in order to stand on the stage.

One of my favourite dancers in the documentary: Miko Forgarty

I found some more recent videos of Miko dancing, definitely check out this young girl, she’s talented and amazing! (http://youtu.be/azQxyOORm8s )

Gaya (Second from the left) and Aran (Second from the right)

Gaya is also one of my favourite dancers, as I really like her expression on stage, very determined and expressive.

Official website: http://www.balletdocumentary.com/

P.S. Happy April’s Fool! xd

Review: Seven Seas Worldwide Shipping

11 Mar

I guess many people would need to send a lot of things back home after studying a few years overseas, so I thought this might help some of you. This is my first time sending things back home after a year studying in Australia; I have never used these services before, but because the luggage allowance from Australia to Hong Kong is not enough, I had to do so. I wish the airline companies could upgrade the luggage allowance and permit 2 luggages, up to 40kg! Or maybe they should all have student tickets or special offer for students!

After some research, I decided to choose Seven Seas Worldwide, mainly because I have seen some good reviews about them and they have a Hong Kong office, though there were some bad reviews too. Anyway, I called their office in Australia to ask a few questions and to clarify things before I made an order. The man on the phone was pretty nice, although at some point, he sounded as if he wasn’t too sure. Luckily he gave me all the answers I want, and immediately after the phone call, I made a booking online. Please note that there is a 3% surcharge if you pay by credit card.

After paying the deposit, you will receive an email with your login details and password. That afternoon, I also received an e-mail and a text message telling me around what time they are coming to give me the free empty boxes.

They said they were going to come between 10:15am to 11:15am, and they were really on time, which gave me a good impression. The guy called me exactly at 10:15am and asked me to go downstairs to catch him. He was kind enough to bring the boxes to my room too. The big plastic bag came with 2 large cartons and 1 standard cartons, a clear file with all the documents that I have to fill in and sign, a marker, bubble wrap, and a roll of tape. One thing to note, if you have a lot of fragile items to send out, be sure to check with the staff if you can have extra bubble wraps, because they don’t give you a lot.

The big plastic bag with the boxes and everything else in it

The documents, the marker, the tape, the bubble wrap

Immediately after they sent me the empty boxes, I went online to choose the collection date. I was actually in a rush, because I am going to leave that Friday, and the Thursday before is a public holiday, so I want to make sure the boxes are picked up before Wednesday. I originally chose the next day (Tuesday) as my collection date; however they said the date wasn’t available, so I had to choose Wednesday instead. During this process, you just need to confirm your address again, and confirm the number of boxes to be collected.

I was planning to send 1 large carton only, but I also ordered a standard carton just in case I don’t have that much stuff to send out. They automatically gave me a spare large carton too. In the end, just as I expected, I only need 1 large carton, so I returned the empty boxes back to them in their original state, which they promised they would not charge you extra fee.

In order to send out your items, you have to fill in the inventory form, insurance form, payment options form. You also need to provide a copy of your passport and maybe a copy of your visa, depending on your destination. There is a total of 23 pages, but I didn’t find much difficulties filling in the forms, apart from the insurance part, which was a bit complicated.

The day before the collection, the company sent me an email and a text message again, informing me what time they are coming to pick up my box, and that they are going to call me to check the documents later that evening. At around 5:20pm, a staff from the company called to double check everything and go through the documents with me. The lady was very patient and explained things clearly, because I was a bit confused about the insurance form.

The packed large carton

On the pick-up day, the company told me they were coming between 11:15am to 12:15pm; the same guy who delivered my boxes called me at 12:15pm, which I still count that as in time, especially because it was a rainy day. In the documents, they said that customers have to have their parcels ready on the ground floor of our building, but I think they actually can help you carry the boxes, which was what the guy did. At this point, you just need to sign two documents, and you will receive a collection receipt too. One extra credit, Chris, the guy who picked up my boxes, was very nice and friendly.

To my surprise, they issued the invoice to me at midnight after the collection, and of course they sent me an email and a text message as usual. I chose to pay online, so I just need to log into my account and pay the remaining balance. At this point, I’m impressed with their service so far, and I’m happy that I settled everything before I leave Sydney, so now I just need to wait for the box to be shipped back to Hong Kong.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

After I paid, I didn’t receive any news from the company. I logged in my account, and saw the transit status, it only showed an estimated arrival date and says that my shipment will be delivered to my destination approximately 2 weeks following the vessel arrival date. The information for vessel name, number and departure port didn’t show up; and when I pressed Global Tracking, it only showed the contact details for the China office, instead of telling me where my shipment is at the moment. I was slightly disappointed, because I used DHL’s shipping service once before and I was able to know where exactly my parcel went, which port they have arrived and when they left for another port.

Approximately 3 weeks after I paid, the company finally sent me an e-mail with all the shipping details, including the ship name, the container name and the estimated arrival date, so I was a bit relieved, knowing that at least my carton is still somewhere on its way to home.

2 days after the estimated arrival date, a man from the company called and told me that the parcel has arrived in Hong Kong and they will deliver it to me the next day. It arrived earlier than I thought, which was a good news, because there were a lot of things that I need inside the carton.

Carton arrived safely

Carton arrived safely back home

On the day, the delivery man called me to check if I was at home and he arrived 50 minutes earlier than expected time. I did not need to pay any extra fee, but just sign a document to confirm that I got the carton. The carton was not delivered by Seven Seas Worldwide but by Pedder Logistics Godown Ltd. It came back in its original status; I don’t think they opened it at all and everything inside was still in place.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Overall, I’m very satisfied with the service. I paid a total of AUD$209.50 (with total loss insurance) and it took approximately 6 weeks by sea from Sydney to Hong Kong.

Childhood memories

13 Jan

Today I decided to visit a place that reminds me of my childhood! Had a really long walk around the suburb and ended up having blisters on my feet! Luckily I had a great time revisiting some places I have been to when I was young, and happy to find that things haven’t changed a lot.

Local bakery

Local bakery at Padstow

Egg, bacon and cheese meat pie

Egg, bacon and cheese meat pie (AUD$3.20)

I have totally forgotten about the meat pie with an egg on the top! I remember the day when my mom bought me this meat pie for breakfast before heading on the train, I was super happy and satisfied, and I think this was the best meat pie I have ever had! Today when I walked pass this local bakery, I suddenly remember the meat pie, and rushed into the bakery and found that they still have it. I can’t be 100% sure it’s still the same bakery, but I still had the “Wow” face after eating the whole meat pie! It’s delicious and I still like the egg! Wish someone in Hong Kong knew how to make real meat pie like this!

Banana milk

Banana flavoured reduced fat milk (AUD$1.70)

I love banana flavoured milk when I was young, and chocolate flavoured milk too! I think that Moove was one of the brands I used to buy, but I think my taste has changed, because I didn’t like it. It has a very strong plastic smell and taste, don’t know if it’s the plastic bottle or what, and it doesn’t have a a hint of banana flavour, not even artificial banana flavour! I just didn’t like it. Maybe I’m no longer a little kid…

Share a Coke Australia

30 Dec

Not sure if you have heard of this advertising/marketing campaign by Coca-Cola Australia; it’s pretty massive here in Sydney. I have seen people posting their customized Coke on their Facebook, or updating their status saying how they finally found a bottle of Coke with their name on it.

It’s rare, at least to my own knowledge, for the Coca-Cola company to do such a massive campaign. They do a lot of advertising campaigns, but definitely not like this one. They are giving out free 200ml Coke and having kiosks at several locations, which means lots of effort put in. The kiosks where you can create your customized Coke have been around for some time; however, I didn’t have the time to visit one of them. Finally they are back in a nearby Westfield shopping center, so I decided to get a customized one for my little brother.

Share a Coke Australia

It wasn’t a very long queue, I waited for like 20 – 25 minutes. Didn’t know what to expect when I was queuing, but when I finally got closer to the kiosk, I was a bit disappointed to find out they are just putting red stickers on the can. However, the red sticker isn’t very visible, it looks as if it was printed on the can. Mine wasn’t done perfectly, but I was pretty satisfied with it.

One thing I wasn’t really impressed is their service. The first thing is that their staff had their own personal belongings inside one of the cabinets, which was visible to all of the customers, right next to the queue. So I saw a staff finishing work, getting out her bag, taking off her work T-shirt and putting on her own T-shirt. Well, I think that’s not a good thing to do in front of all your customers, right?! And I also saw the staff, who was in charge of the sticker machine, getting his lip balm while there was a long queue waiting for their customized Coke. Their service isn’t up to the standard, not what I would have expected from the company.

The another thing was the whole atmosphere. Nothing exciting there, the staff didn’t seem to be that friendly and fun. They were not very organized too; there were two sticker machines, but most of the time only one was in use, because the other staff had to get Coke out of the cabinets. That staff was even a bit pissed off when people were inside the kiosk, but no one ever told us not to go inside the kiosk while waiting in line.

Not sure if it’s because it’s nearly the end of the campaign or whatsoever; I think they could have done better, they should have made more use of social media and online media. They could have asked people to hold their cans and take photos in front of the kiosks, and immediately upload them to the official facebook page. I’m sure they are a lot of people willing to do that. And of course, they could have better customer service, even though we are not paying for what we get.

Not sure if the campaign result is really that good, but I’m certain they are burning off their money!

TYPO: Get Crafty Cards

10 Sep

Went to Westfield Eastgardens this afternoon, planning to buy some new clothes, but didn’t find anything I was interested in. Clothes in Aussie are relatively more expensive, I wanna shop back in Hong Kong! Anyways, back to the main topic, so I came across Typo and thought I might wanna get a birthday card for my friend. Bought Typo’s cards a few times, and was out of ideas what to get there; but these cute cupcakes caught my eyes!

Typo Get Crafty Cards

You can get them at AUD$6.95. They come with 2 large cupcakes and 1 small cupcake, 3 happy birthday tags, 3 cards and 3 envelopes in different sizes.

Well, I would have to say the paper quality isn’t that good and it would have been better if the medium-size card wasn’t in red, because the cherry on top of the cupcake is red too.

They also have a few more different options, some with butterflies, some with elephants. If you are bored with regular cards, try Typo’s Get Crafty Cards and “Stick Create Send”.