Be Our Guest: Mom and Jeanne Ann

Today we have a guest post from our visitors, Mom and Jeanne Ann! Today will be an introduction, but later in the week they will share some of there experiences in Singapore. If you have any questions for them, leave it in the comments box below. We hope you enjoy their posts!

How do you know Mary and Taylor? Why did you decide to visit them?

Mom: I am Mary’s Mom. This new Nana came to see her new grandchild. Also, to help celebrate Mary’s birthday.

Jeanne Ann: Technically, I am only a distant cousin of Mary’s. My mother and Mary’s grandmother were first cousins and good friends. Chris and I kept that tradition going, and Mary and my daughter, Katie, are the third generation of friend/cousins! Realistically, Mary has always seemed like more of a daughter than a cousin.

Where are you traveling from?

Mom: I live in Northwest Indiana and I flew out of Chicago O’Hare.

Jeanne Ann: I live in west-central Indiana, so I drove from there to Chris’ house, spent the night, and flew from O’Hare to Hong Kong and then on to Singapore.

How long are you staying in Singapore?

Mom: I plan on staying until October 11th.

Jeanne Ann: We are planning on staying until early morning on the 11th.

Do you plan to travel anywhere else while visiting?

Mom: No, I don’t plan on going anywhere else. We are on a short visit and want to spend time with my grandchild when she arrives.

Jeanne Ann: We have plans to do several activities here in Singapore, but we won’t be going to other locations.

How was your flight?

Mom: The flight from Chicago to Hong Kong was delayed 3 hours, the only perk was that Jeanne Ann and I had 3 seats to share.  It was a very long flight. The flight from Hong Kong to Singapore was also delayed. That flight was full and we did not have a empty seat to share.

Jeanne Ann: Crazy long! We went through so many time zones I was constantly confused about where we were when. I had an aisle seat with no seat in front of me, so I had plenty of leg room.

What are your first impressions of Singapore?

Mom:  I was too tired and anxious to see Mary and Taylor to pay attention to anything on the way to their house from the airport. So far today, I’ve noticed its very clean and there are not as many people out and about as I thought there would be.

Jeanne Ann: We got here in the middle of the night, so there was not much traffic, and I couldn’t see much from the back of the taxi. Riding in a taxi where I have no control-on the wrong side of the street was an interesting experience.

What are you looking forward to while visiting?

Mom: I am looking forward to visiting Mary, Taylor and Baby B. Also, I am looking to forward to interesting shopping experiences around Singapore.  I  can’t wait to see the Botanical Gardens and Marina Bay Sands.

Jeanne Ann: I’m looking forward to meeting Baby B, seeing what she looks like, and learning her name. I really want to see the architecture and examples of the influences from the different cultures.

When do you think the baby’s actual birthday will be?

Mom: October 2nd

Jeanne Ann: October 1st

 

Readers, when do you think the baby’s birthday will be?

Advertisements

A Walk Around Chinatown

Spending the day walking through Singapore’s Chinatown is always a unique experience. This is an excursion from when Mandy was here visiting that I thought would be fun to share. Our walk combined a bit of culture, shopping and of course exercise! We left our house and took the MRT to the Telok Ayer MRT stop where we got off and walked to our first stop.

The first stop was a small little temple along Telok Ayer Street that has a great little model of what the street looked like in the past. Hard to believe that we would have been standing in the ocean just steps outside! (You can see the model in the background of this pictures!)

Chinatown-1Next on our walk, we headed to Thian Hock Keng Temple which is the oldest temple in Singapore.
Chinatown-4 Chinatown-7 Chinatown-12 Chinatown-16 We continued walking and headed through and around Ann Siang Hill Park. Chinatown-19 By this time, we needed a rest and it was almost lunch time. We headed to one of the most famous hawker centers in Singapore, Maxwell Road Hawker Centre. This place boasts over 100 stalls selling a variety of local dishes. We got chicken and rice from the famous Tian Tian Chicken and Rice stall along with black and white carrot cake. The Tian Tian stall is famous for a Gordon Ramsey food challenge and is said to be the best in Singapore(it always has a long line.)  This was Mandy’s first experience of eating hawker food. This place was packed with the usual lunch crowd and I’m glad she got to experience this eating adventure.  To top our meal off we got some delicious fresh squeezed strawberry pineapple juices, it only cost $3 a cup!

Maxwell Food CentreChinatown-26 Waiting in Line for Chicken and RiceChinatown-27 Chinatown-28 Chinatown-29 Carrot Cake-Not a cake and it doesn’t contain carrots!Chinatown-32 Chicken and RiceChinatown-33 Chinatown-35 Busy Lunch CrowdChinatown-37 Chinatown-38 Yummy Juice!Chinatown-40

After lunch we headed to the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple just down the street. It’s located in the heart of Chinatown and a great place to visit. We were able to go inside and visit, but we didn’t see the tooth. It’s locked up in a special room!

Buddha Tooth Relic TempleChinatown-22Outside DecorChinatown-41 StatuesChinatown-45 InsideChinatown-51 InsideChinatown-52 Prayer Service-The sound was enchanting.Chinatown-53 Chinatown-55

Making our way out of the temple, we headed to the streets for some shopping. Chinatown is a great place to find knick-knacks and Singapore treats at a low cost. Surprisingly, it was not a busy day which it made it much more tolerable to look around.
Chinatown-57 Chinatown-60 Chinatown-69 Lastly, we passed the Sri Mariamman Temple which is known as Singapore’s oldest Hindu temple. I loved the detail of the outside of this temple, it was so unique. By this point, we were hot and getting tired so we passed on the inside tour and headed home to relax and cool off!

Chinatown-67 Chinatown-66 Chinatown-62 Chinatown-61 Chinatown-64 Chinatown-67

Marina Waterfront Trail

The marina waterfront trail is a great walk around the Singapore Marina Bay area. Walking this loop gives you great views of some of Singapore’s top sights at a leisurely pass. Mandy and I did this one late afternoon into evening back in July. It was interesting to get different views on things from when we had taken our river cruise early in the week.

The loop took us about 2 hours, but we were stopping and taking pictures and relaxing around the area. After we completed a full loop we grabbed a refreshing drink at Starbucks and relaxed until the sun started to set for some fun night time pictures.  Here is a link to a map with the points of interest and more descriptions if you are interested!

Starting our Stroll
IMG_0406Merlion and Marina Bay SandsMBWW-2Merlion and CBDMBWW-9Marina Bay Sands and Ferris WheelMBWW-36Arts and Science MuseumMBWW-38Lily PadMBWW-43The Helix BridgeMBWW-56Helix Bridge and Marina Bay SandsMBWW-60SunsetMBWW-68MBWW-72NightfallMBWW-90Merlion and CBD at NightMBWW-95MBWW-97

MacRitchie Reservoir: Tree Top Walk

Treetopwalk-16

We have had MacRitchie Reservoir and the Tree Top Walk on our Singapore “to-do” list for some time. When Mandy was here visiting, we thought it would be an excellent opportunity to see a different side of Singapore. This walk provided a great dose of nature and exercise.

We took the shorter version of the trail that took us about 2 hours. We packed our bug spray and water and hit the trail! It was great to escape to a jungle environment and get our sweat on!

The Start of the TrailTreetopwalk-3 CreekTreetopwalk-6This Sign Scared Mandy!Treetopwalk-14Treetopwalk-15Treetopwalk-11The Tree Top Suspension BridgeTreetopwalk-17Treetopwalk-18Crossing!Treetopwalk-19So Sunny!IMG_0280Friends on the Path!Treetopwalk-31Treetopwalk-32Treetopwalk-35We were sweaty messes after this hike!IMG_0276

Over all we loved our hike and look forward to heading to another nature reserve park here in Singapore in the future!

Prepping for Baby

Gearing up for our little girls arrival I’ve been doing a lot around the house to be as prepared as possible.The last few weeks I have started nesting around the house, cleaning, re-organizing, running last minute errands and making meals ahead of time.  One of the things that I am most worried about after her arrival is running out of food for us! We have  a super small freezer and refrigerator. A couple of months back we were able to pick up a small used fridge to help add more space, which has helped. Part of my fear stems from grocery shopping being a large task and there are not a lot of easy take-out or delivery restaurants near by that we like for an easy no frills meal. I’ve already researched meat markets that will be able to order from and get meat delivered weekly, this will help considerably.

For Example, Our Three Small Freezer Drawersphoto 1 (8)

In this post, I thought I’d share some of the meal prep I’ve done ahead. Everybody loves learning some new recipes, right?

Here are meals that I have pre-made/marinated/etc. for when the baby arrives(and cooks leave, aka Mom and Jeanne Ann.) These are some of our “go-to” meals so I’d thought I’d share if you’d like some new recipes. The recipes are all linked in the title to the webpage I found them on.

Asian Marinated Crockpot Beef Spare Ribs(I used boneless short ribs)photo 4 (2)

Meatballs and Marinara-This is just the marinara.photo 3 (4)

Smokey Bacon Chiliphoto 2 (4)

Hamburger Patties-I just put together some ground beef and spices and pressed them in to patties!

Damn Fine Chicken-Sorry no picture!

Apple Sauce-Sorry no picture!

Pork Breakfast Sausagephoto 1 (6)

Crock Pot Orange Chicken-Sorry no picture!

Chocolate Cherry Muffinsphoto 1 (7)

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

photo 2 (5)

Granola Bars-Just out of the oven, cooling waiting to be cut!photo 3 (5)

Here’s what the freezer drawer looks like with the above items. It’s pretty full!

photo 2 (6)

 

I plan to make a few more things in the coming weeks that are left and making sure our fridge and cupboards are stocked at all times. Have any suggestions on easy meals or things that I should stock up on?