Thursday, July 30, 2009

Tanah Lot, Bali Pictures (Part 2)

It was hot in Bali, & especially for travellers, we really need to keep drinking lots of water & fruit juice to keep us cool ;)
These were taken on the long stretch of road leading to the beach, at Tanah Lot. I love shopping at all these street vendors. But, you must always bargain, with a minimum of 50% from the opening price. 

I noticed some of the vendors were not as enthusiastic when I spoke Indonesian with them to ask for the price. But I understand ;) ... generally, they don't earn as much out of us as the "obvious" foreigners. Even the "starting price" for bargaining were already slashed by half for us, in comparison to other foreigners. (I overheard the price they gave to some ladies in the shop, compared to the price the shop owner offered me).
Towards the end of the road, leading down to a flight of steps. I heard the view there at sunset was breathtaking. Well, we didnt stay to watch that, hehe...

The kids LOVE the snake! Mommies cringe...

Group photo with Mr Anaconda (actually I have no idea what type of snake this is).

The kids with grandmother. From left: Natalie & Hans (our kids), Joseph (eldest brother's 2nd son), Jonathan (3rd brother's oldest son), & Jeremy (eldest brother's eldest son).

You see, the Jubilees (my husband's family) had 6 kids, all boys. Now 5 out of 6 are married, & most of us already have kids. But all the grandchildren are BOYS again, hehe...with the exception of our Natalie! *yipee* We've got the bonus! hehe...
These towering sculpted pillars are common sight in Bali. Perhaps their hallmark ;)

In tomorrow's article, I'll post more pics of the 1st hotel we stayed in, and also my short experience as a wedding photographer :D

See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I'm back from Bali! (Pictures Part 1)

I'm finally back from Bali! It was a short trip, but quite a "fruitful" one...hehe...depends on how you want to translate fruitfulness ;)

First of all, it was a family gathering of sorts with my in laws, & my children getting to meet their cousins. It was also a visit to the island where we spent our honeymoon *-) And, not to mention, the really delicious local food, & great street shopping! Fruitful indeed :D

The above picture shows the villa/hotel where we spent the 1st 3 nights with the family. It was at a great price of Rp 350,000 (~ S$50) per night. The place is actually very nice, unfortunately we felt it's not well maintained. And, it seems pretty deserted as well, cus we felt that we were the only guests around! hehe... not that we mind! Our big family took up 5 rooms in a 2 storey-building by itself.
I'd always wanted to check out Bali Silver, which are usually quite costly in Singapore, or anywhere else! And I was pleasantly surprised to find out on our 1st day, that the guide my bro-in-law hired is actually bringing us to a place that sells Bali Silver ;)

The above picture shows a craftswomen handmaking/creating the bead cap, embellishing it with the designs, by hand....tiny bead per tiny bead, literally dust per dust! Amazing! No wonder they don't come cheap, its truly labour intensive.

The guide cant help but comment that he should allocate a whole day dedicated to shopping... hehe... cus what he thought will be a short trip to the Bali Silver place, ended up us staying there for several hours! Well, half of our big group are women, thats why, hehe...

Nx destination (I'm not sure if its in Ubud, but my husband says it is) was for lunch, at Dirty Duck Diner (Bebek Bengil). They named it Dirty Duck, cus these ducks are the ones that played in the rice field...thus they are wet & "dirty" ;)

I was starving already, & really enjoyed the food, even though I don't normally enjoy duck meat. It's deep fried, till crispy. The chilli dish/sauce is really tasty! I especially enjoyed the one pictured below with shallots & other ingredients thrown in (I'm not sure what, as I'm not really a culinary expert) and of course the other "sambal terasi".

In Singapore I don't normally eat chilli, as I cant quite take spicy food, & I don't quite like the taste of chilli sauce/paste here. But in Indonesia, I find my "spice-tolerance" increase several notches at once. Eating without the chilli dish there is not complete! ;)

At the "back" of the restaurant is this huge grass field, with coconut trees in the distance.

Natalie loved the fresh air here ;)
We loved the lush greeneries in this huge eating place (restaurant?). These type of eating places are common in Indonesia, but not in Singapore. This particular "restaurant" has the "cottages" at the side, for private dinings for each families/group of friends. It has ponds, & mini rice fields at the sides. Beautifully landscaped!

I'm glad to be back in Singapore, but still missing Bali & the family we left behind. Traveling does make me feel more comfortable & closer with my in laws. 

I still have many more pictures to show, which I'll do so in "parts" ;)

Check back again for more Bali pictures tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

On Vacation 22-27 July 2009

Hello Everyone!

Just a short announcement to let u know that I'll be away on vacation to Bali for a family reunion with my in laws, starting from today 22nd, to 27th July.

Especially for all The Laughing House customers: I may have limited access to internet, so please bear with me if I'm slow in responding to all your enquiries ;) But, rest assured that I'll get back to you as soon as I'm able to.

All orders & purchases made from today onwards will be sent out promptly on the 28th, with the exception of custom orders, by which you'll be duly advised upon placing your orders.

Thank you for your continued support! & Please keep our family in prayer, that we'll have a safe & enjoyable trip :D

See you again soon!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 8m (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:
Hello ~ I'm a stay at home wife with a passion for all things scrappy.

I enjoy designing pre-made layouts and page kits as well as mini albums. Honestly, just about anything that will help tell a story with your pictures.
Check out this shop for some scrap booking fun! Careful, else you may get hooked ;)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 7 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:

I'm a 24 year old preschool teacher who crafts too much for her own good. I live in Florida with my husband, two dogs, my husband's Jeep, and my craft projects. It's a good life.

My goal in creating my embroidery pieces is to bring a little homespun goodness to your homes. I grew up with a mom who was constantly cross-stitching. I love the look of cross-stitch and embroidery on walls in homes. It gives your home such a lovely, lived-in, warm look.

I am open to custom requests and would love to create anything for you! I hope you enjoy my pieces and I hope your life is full of goodness and joy!
Love how cosy this shop looks! I've always been attracted to cross stitches since I was young too. However, I've never really completed a single project! lol...I guess I simply lose interest in it after a while, especially since it's always taking so long to complete.

I suppose, all craftwork tend to be tedious & time consuming in its own way... & we can only complete something if we truly have the interest & passion for it. Kudos to Jess in creating so many handmade goodness to add warmth & colour to a home!

My Mom's last stay at Yishun.

How time flies! It's been slightly over 2 months since my mom came over, & this morning I've sent her back to Indonesia again.

It's strange how the absence of a person can make the house seems quieter, especially when she don't talk a lot, nor make much noise! lol...

The kids & me will surely miss her these few days. But, it's a good thing that we'll be off for a short vacation 2 days later, where we'll have a family reunion with my husband's side of the family, in Bali! *yay* At least, this upcoming vacation will divert our attention away missing her too much (esp the kids who've grown attached to her these 2 weeks).

The next time she comes for a visit, we'd have moved to our new house, in Pasir Ris. I told her to have a good "final" look around Yishun & the place where we live in now, which we've grown to love. We'll sorely miss the open space & park right in front of our building, as that's where we go for our daily evening walks, & Hans (my 5.5 yr old son) will cycle & meet his friends from school for an (almost) "unlimited" play, running, cycling & simply spending his over-charged energy without getting into too much trouble with me! hehe...

The friendly neighbours we've gotten familiar with, & the close proximity to the MRT Station, the newly renovated & expanded Northpoint mall are just a few more things we'll miss here.

However, I'm sure that we'll easily adapt to our new surroundings in Pasir Ris, find a new park & playground where we'll enjoy visiting for our evening walks, & new neighbours we can call as our friends.

All of us gets nostalgic from time to time I guess, & I simply can't help feeling this way recently, especially with our impending moving out date looming closer. But I know, good things are in store for us for are in Christ! ;)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 6 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
Are you a dog lover? You'd be smitten by photographs of these canines in various pose, by an award winning photographer from Leesburg!

Check out this newly opened shop on Etsy ;)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 5 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:

My name is Rebecca. I live with my husband (Jay), my daughter (Brennah May) and our puppy (Ruby Tuesday). For the last few years I have been an elementary school teacher and had to give up my hobby of jewellery making (from my University days ) due to the busy life of lesson planning, marking, and managing large groups of kiddies! Since going off on maternity leave, I've finally had the time (while my baby sleeps) to dabble in jewellery making once again... And I'm loving every minute!

My goal on Etsy is to sell a bit, be inspired, and hopefully make better and better jewellery all the time!
Rebecca is actually a customer of mine, & I never realized that she makes beautiful jewelries as well! (Similarly with Elan of Hapagirls, featured a few days ago) Well, I hardly check the profile of my customers, as I simply assume they are mostly buyers only, with no shops on Etsy. Perhaps it's high time I do so, & see what kind of handmade treasures I can dig from their shops, lol...

This shop is filled with "modern" vintage that are bound to delight the young & old alike. I know I'm smitten! Happy Browsing ;)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 4 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:
I specialize in creating unique jewelry by using Swarovski crystals, charms, and miniatures. Now making custom photo pendants!

I recently added a new section titled Elegant Bridal. I love creating custom designs for brides and finding the perfectly shaded accessories for the wedding party.
Came to know about this shop when I was in the Etsy forum on the search for new shops to feature. I was instantly attracted to the avatar of this shop, which featured a cute miniature teacup in turquoise. It's unique, eye-catching and with a touch of vintage all rolled in one! Don't you just love it too?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 3 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:

Hi, my name is Suse and this is the story of how Suse Hocking Designs came to be…
I have a degree in Primary Education, however, after my 2 daughters came along I decided to be a full-time stay-at-home-mum. I have always had a passion for craft and started out with painting and drawing. After getting married I discovered scrapbooking and became instantly hooked. I have since been on several design teams for scrapbooking websites and local stores. I have also had my work published in several Australian scrapbooking magazines. I have worked in a local scrapbook store on the Gold Coast, teaching and designing classes.
As my other friends started having babies I started hand making baby gifts for them such as crocheted blankies, hats and booties, soft toys and customized singlets and shirts. My own girls were wearing my designs and soon other people were asking where they could get them from. It then occurred to me the popularity of this unique and funky quality children’s wear and that it couldn’t be bought in major chain stores, and thus, Suse Hocking Designs was born.
In this shop, you'll find some gorgeous handmade items such as appliqued singlets and t-shirts, aprons, book bags and change mats, all meticulously done with love!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 2 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:
I am a stay at home mom to my beautiful 21 month old daughter. I love making handcrafted pieces out of metal and wood.

I have a BFA in 3-D Media / Metalsmithing from California State Long Beach. Although my emphasis was in Metals, I love to work with wood as well. In fact, I like to incorporate the two whenever I can.

My philosophy is quite simple. I like clean lines and great craftsmanship. I will not ship anything that is not to my standards.
I like to be inspired when creating a piece and hope that the product will reflect that inspiration. I also like to design things with functionality in mind. However, on occasion, I will branch out of my box and make things that are simple and pretty. Sometimes you need to focus on the simpler things in life...
I simply love the look of handmade jewelries, especially those that are fabricated with sterling or fine silver metal clay. All the more so, cus I don't know how to make them! lol... I find that such pieces truly speaks of the crafter's creativity & skill with the hands. Check out Hapagirls, for such jewelries!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Etsy Featured Shop 1 (Part 3)

Buy Handmade
A little something about the seller:
I have always really liked doing origami. I only recently got into this cardmaking kick. Hallmark makes really nice things, but I feel that homemade/handmade gives everything a whole personal touch. I decided to put my two loves together by making cards that feature origami, and thus, KittyKatKards was born. I also using rubber stamps so some of my work features stamped images. I'm currently researching other origami that I can create to expand my horizons. Stay tuned...

Loves naps, ice cream, Asian and Italian and Mexican food (food, in general), Harry Potter, running, Sour Patch kids, Jack Bauer, etc.
I came across this shop in the etsy forum, & fell in love with this cute & pretty shop with all its handmade cards featuring origami! They're so pretty that you may wanna keep some to be framed... likewise, the recipients of these cards would love to do the same! Check it out now for some pretty wall art :D

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Making a Bible Cover again, that is... ;) Yes, it's my 3rd attempt now. And I can proudly say that I can confidently tackle this on my own from here onwards. 

After making 2 pieces of Bible Cover, I felt confident enough, & had wanted to make something else for the nx project. But my mom said I needed practice on the trimmings, & adviced me to make another Bible Cover.

I'm glad I followed her advice. This time round, I ran thru the procedures with her (b4 doing anything) just to make sure that I have it right in the head. Then I proceed to do it, entirely on my own, without referring to her even once.

Because of that, I was more careful & measured & re-measured everything b4 putting the fabric on to the sewing machine. I realized thats exactly one thing that I cannot be lazy about, ;)  As my mom repeated like a mantra, we need to make sure that the proportions are right, so that our projects will turn out well.

Thru this 3rd attempt, I also paid closer attention to the trimmings...knowing what was my downfall in the 1st 2 pieces. I sew them tighter by hand, & understood more of what & how it meant to do it, for a better effect. Like I mentioned last time, the trimming is really the "king-maker"... it's what made or kill the finished item.

After this was fully completed, I proudly present it to my mom for a verdict. And she nodded in approval after a close inspection, and said that I've improved a lot on this piece, and that really meant a lot, coming from her! ;)

I felt such a great sense of satisfaction seeing this final/3rd project, & proudly showed it to my husband & my brother...hehe... can't resist the urge to hear more praises from the family. Yes, thats me! *grin*

Some ppl commented that I had made a progress pretty fast, within such a short period of time. But while I was it, I realized one thing. As I was growing up, and saw my mom sewing etc, I often wished that I had the same skill as her, and often doubted if I can do it.

I tried few months back, & was not that pleased with the result. I feel it was not as difficult as I had earlier thought, but felt that I don't have the patience, nor the drive to see a project through. But now I see things differently. I realized that I can do anything I set my heart & mind to "I can do all things thru Christ who strengthened me..." Phil 4:13 and also realizing the fact that any work that we do, is actually an act of worship to God! (I can't remember the verse, but I heard this in my pastor's message in church today)

Lastly, the verse that really encourages me constantly, in regard to what I'm doing at home (work, craft etc)  "May the favor b]" style=" line-height: 0.5em; ">[b] of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us— yes, establish the work of our hands." Ps 90:17 In some other version, it mentioned, "May the beauty of the Lord rest upon us"

This is an example of discipleship at home. My mom can teach me how to sew, but I still remembered vividly the image of her working on the table/sewing machine till late at night, when I was still very young, & how she seeks perfection & beauty in what she does. And it was that, which made me think that it's not so much "taught" but "caught". Given my "wishy-washy" attitude (often-times) I may give up halfway thru if it's too tedious & time consuming. 

I'm thankful, & my confidence level in an all time high. But I must come back & remember to give thanks to God who's leading me. "Whatever your work is, do it gladly. Do it as you would do it unto the Lord and not for people." Col 3:23

Thursday, July 2, 2009

What do you think of my NEW Camera Case?

I'm using Canon Digital Ixus 60 (size: 3.3 x 2.1" with thickness of 0.8") and this camera case was patterned after my own camera case as shown in the last picture. Unfortunately, I'm unable to photograph it with the camera inside the case, ... obviously :D

I merely wanted a camera case that has pretty/cute fabric prints on it, instead of boring black synthetic material. I also wished that the original case has a small pocket for me to put my extra battery in.

This camera case was made exactly the way I wanted it. With a cute fabric, and a pocket at the back of the case for my extra battery :D 

It's fully padded on the "body" to protect your camera, and layered with a stiff material (I don't know what it's called) to protect/retain it's shape. The flap closes with velcro strip.

I'm really proud to carry this camera/case around now, knowing that it's definitely OOAK (One of A Kind!)

Now, you can have your own camera case, in YOUR Choice of Fabric too! 

Measurement of this camera case:
Total height (when closed): 3.8"
Total Width: 2.9"
Side Width: 1.2"

Thank you for looking! I hope you'll love it ;)

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