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Chinese New Year 2014 正月初一

The first day of the Chinese Lunar Calender. It’s Chinese New Year.
The time of the year where we binge on Chinese New Year Goodies,
and delude ourselves that there will always be tomorrow to go on a diet!

It’s a day of PURE happiness for the kids.
They get to receive red packets, have full access to goodies, candies and sodas.
There will be no homework, no revision and no sighting of books since the word for book sounds like “shu” which means LOSE in Mandarin.

It’s a day where we drench our lips in honey
saying Auspicious greetings wishing others well and prosperity.

Strangely, the auspicious greetings has taken a pit fall in the recent years.
I couldn’t quite pinpoint if it was modernization or are we too embarrassed to be Chinese. My hearty 恭喜发财 (which means congratulation and best wishes for a Prosperous New Year), was only reciprocated by a mere Happy New Year.

Auspicious well wishes is just like a game of Ping Pong.
I wish you well, you wish me well lah!

This is OUR well wishes for you!
May the year of horse bring you and your family
good health, great wealth and abundance happiness!

This year’s Lunar New Year was a little special.
My niece, Daphne returns from Perth to celebrate this joyous occasion
with her bouncy 6 month old; Asher. Such a joy to be with!

恭祝大家,
在马年里,
年头旺到年尾。
旺旺旺!!!

Reunion with the In-Laws at Johor Baru

I treasure relationships, especially of those with families.

In my last post, I said that Reunion is the start of a million migration…..
We did our little “migration” to Johor Baru for Reunion Lunch with my In-Laws.

Kitson took Hiroshi on the bike,
while I lugged the other 2 kids on the bus across the causeway.

I could only thank God for the smooth moving traffic!
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh Heads over to Johor Baru for Reunion Lunch
Sister-in-Law Peggy, Brother-in-law Chong, their 3 wonderful daughters + Mother-in-law.

Prosperity Pot (盆菜) by Pekin Restaurant, 发财鱼生 by Dragon-i, Mother-in-law’s version of “Ratatouille”, & Stir Fried Vegetables.

Our family with Mother-in-Law.

Even though the journey of “migration” is a little inconvenient, the good food and the great company makes it all worth while! I am already looking forward to my next Reunion Dinner at Johor Baru!

Linking up with Dinomama for Foodie Fridays:

The Significance of Reunion Dinner

The Reunion Dinner: The start of a billion migration.

In China, it is estimated that for this year’s Spring Festival, there will be over 3.6 billion “journeys” by Chinese people trying to make it home by plane, train, bus, or anything in between.

This shows the Significance of Reunion Dinner for the Chinese. Reunion Dinner normally happens on the eve of Chinese New Year. It is a day when family gathers and have a good meal together.

Being a Cantonese, we are particular about what we dish out during Reunion Dinner. Every dish should have an auspicious meaning to it. This is our first time preparing Reunion Dinner from home. I personalty find that it holds more significance than eating out at overcrowded restaurants.

This is what our Reunion Dinner looks like:
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh Cooks Auspicious Dishes for Reunion DInner

1. James having a light hearted moment with Aunty Ivy.

2. 发财鱼生 Prosperity Toss “raw fish salad” Consists of strips of raw fish, mixed with shredded vegetables and a variety of sauces and condiments, among other ingredients. Yusheng literally means “raw fish” but since “fish (鱼)” is commonly conflated with its homophone “abundance (余)”, Yúshēng (鱼生) is interpreted as a homophone for Yúshēng (余升) meaning an increase in abundance. Therefore, yusheng is considered a symbol of abundance, prosperity and vigor. Highly Recommend YuSheng from Giant Supermarket Sushi Counter!!

3. EXTRA 鱼生 given by Our Neighbour! This year confirm will end in ABUNDANCE!

4. 六宝冷盘 Six Treasure Clod Platter

5. 横财就手 Braised Pork Knuckles with Mushrooms, Dried Scallops, Dried Oyster, Chestnut, Sea Cucumber & Sea Moss. It literally means “windfalls that are easily accessible”.

6. 年年有余 Steam fish in soy Sauce topped with fried garlic & caipo. This dish literally means to have a surplus every year!

7. 哈哈大笑 Steam prawns in Chinese Wine. The word for prawn sounds like “ha” in Cantonese, hence symbolizing laughter and happiness.

8. 花开富贵, 包有余 Stir fried vegetables with Abalone. When the flowers blossom, there will be prosperity and confirmation of surplus.

9. The Love of a Family is Life’s Greatest Blessings!

I am encouraged by the compliments by everyone and will definitely do this again!

May the year horse be filled with
galloping success, good health, great wealth and abundance happiness for everyone!

Linking up with DinoMama for Foodie Fridays:

Chingay 2014 | Colours of Fabric, One People 布海同心

Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Since it was our very first time watching Chingay, we didn’t really know what to expect from it. But, as we sat in our seats, the kids got excited as they rummage through their goody bags.
SIngapore Mom Blogs | Chingay 2014

We were seated at the edge of our seats as we watch talented artists by PAssion Visual Arts Paint Horses while waiting for Chingay 2014 to start!
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

The opening act saw People’s Association PAssionArts, Vocal Associates singing 麻雀衔竹枝. This song has been playing in my head the entire night like a broken record! I love how catchy and meaningful it is! Photo Credit: Victor Lim
Signapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

It was not only a treat for the ears. Our eyes were fixated by the colourful costumes by graceful dancers from different ethnic groups.
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Chinese Dance 俏花旦.
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Malay Dance-off between traditional and modern contemporary Malay dances
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Vibrant Indian Bollywood-themed Performing Contingent
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

One of the many reasons Chingay 2014 is so unique is because it has incorporated community efforts of many levels. Take for instance, Project Batik 360; Paint With ONE Heart has seen different communities coming together through Batik painting. The intricate 360 meter Batik Fabric that will flow through the entire Parade route accompanied by colourful multi-cultural performers.

Community Puppetry Art with Gigantic 4 meters tall Puppets!
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Mass children ballet display. Sophia was in awe looking at these beautiful ballerinas.
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Singapore Getai “新加坡歌台” with celebrity artistes Liu Ling Ling, Wang Lei, Lee Pei Fen and Rawi Hamin singing an upbeat version of 一人一半.
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Another community project for Chingay 2014, Knit with One Heart has seen different communities coming together and bonding through knitting. These knitted art pieces exemplifies a closely-knitted Singapore.

Spectacular Grand Finale! Featuring 720 meters of colourful Community-knitted Tapestries from Project Knit with One Heart. The theme song for the finale; 网织同心” is an Original Song composed by renown local music talent Mr Lee Si Song. I love how the song is able to intertwine 4 different languages in 1 song. Uniquely Singapore!
Singapore Mom Blogger Irene Soh | Chingay 2014

Chingay 2014 | Colours of Fabric. One People 布海同心
will be happening on 7 & 8 of February 2014, 7pm,
at F1 Pit Building.

Get your Tickets Now from Sistic.

Soup House SG Whampoa

Looking at the amount of dedication put forth in every bowl of soup by Andy; the proprietor of Soup House SG Whampoa. I totally felt that this is Soup made for the Soul.

Not only does Andy makes soups that are delicious. He is also adamant about bringing nutritious, and healthier food choices to his customers too.

明目鱼汤 (Ming Mu Yu Soup)
The rare ingredient in this soup, 明目鱼 has properties to improve ones sight.
The texture of the yam rice is light and very delicious.
Andy uses olive oil for his yam rice for a healthier alternative.

冬瓜汤 (Winter Melon Soup)
The clear soup broth is mild and has a hint of sweetness from the winter melon. Andy said that the skin of the winter melon should be left intact as it helps the removal of dampness in the body.

药材黑鸡汤&药材鸡汤
(Herbal Black Chicken Soup & Herbal Chicken Soup)
Herbal Black Chicken Soup was packed with flavor. Andy added his magical touch before serving up the Herbal Black Chicken Soup; a dash of chinese wine. To the commoner, the action may seem insignificant, but to the master, it opens up a whole new dimension. Taste of the Herbal Chicken Soup on the hand was less empowering, but equally as enjoyable.

翅瓜汤 (Skarkfin Melon Soup)
Looking at the presentation of each soup, I could only imagine the amount of effort puts forth in every bowl! This looks like restaurant standard but kopitiam prices. Mellow clear soup broth, beautiful presentation and pleasant tasting.

木瓜汤 (Papaya Soup)
This is a hybrid between soup and dessert. The subtle sweetness from the papaya and the nourishing white fungus and the promises of better complexion makes this soup a hit with the ladies. Very unique and tasty.

It has been an enriching experience at Soup House SG (Whampoa). Andy shared many secrets of enjoying double boil soup, stressing that all ingredients should be taken alongside with its soup.

We’ll be back for more soupy goodness!
At the meantime, checkout our interview with Andy
and what others think about Soup House SG:

Linking up with Dinomama for Foodie Fridays

Full Disclosure: We have been invited to Soup House SG Whampoa for food tasting. All views and opinion are our own.