Sunday, June 30, 2013

Photography Class

Hubby bought himself a new toy at the end of last year, a Sony NEX-6 dslr camera and had been attending the free photography classes organized by Sony to learn how to use his camera.

A few weeks ago, he was checking the Sony website and found that this month's class was about photographing food. Since I'm a blogger I thought it would be good for me to tag along and see how I can improve in taking photos of the food that I want to post up on my blog.

The venue was Haikara Cafe in Subang Jaya, near Subang Parade. Our instructor for the day was Mun Ho, a professional photographer.

Our instructor
There were about 12 of us, mostly couples and everyone had their own dslr camera...except me. I figured that I would just learn about the photography angles and hubby could learn more about using his camera. Oh, and we were the oldest couple there; most of the others look like they were in their early thirties.
Using white paper, aluminium foil or even
a white paper napkin to reflect light onto
the parts where there is shadow
The food looked really delicious and most of the time I was waiting for each session to end so that we could taste the yummy food (yup, the food was cool is that for a free class!)

First came the salads and main meals....

This is how I would usually take a photo of
something delicious
...and this is how we can make the food
look even more mouth-watering!
Everyone busy taking close-ups of the dishes

Then came the desserts....

I could hardly wait to taste this!

Photos taken by hubby...not bad eh? Looks kind of professional. 

The instructor showed us how the shots would
look on the laptop since the camera lcd screen
is rather small
Hubby taking aim at a piece of cake...
and me? as usual, standing behind him giving
instructions ~ "a bit more to the left, 
zoom in a little, no no focus on that grape..."
bla, bla, bla...
The instructor was good and everyone picked up a lot of little tips on how to maximize the functions on the camera to take that 'perfect shot'. For me, it was a little too technical and this aunty was quite clueless most of the time when it came to ISO settings, shutter speed and aper-what?? However, what I learnt was how amazing and complicated our eyes are, and how the camera cannot fully capture the images that we can see.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

R & R in Pangkor

 During the midterm school holidays we went on a much needed vacation to the beautiful island of Pangkor. We have fond memories of the last time we were there 7 years ago with our kids.

This time we travelled with some church friends, a newly married young couple . We decided to be a little more adventurous and took the trunk road instead of the highway, stopping every now and then to indulge in the favourite Malaysian pastime ~ eating.

We set out at 9am, and our first stop was Kedai Kopi Shin Lok in Jeram which is famous for it's fresh pau and yam puff (woo kok).

This is so unbelievably yummy even though
I'm not a fan of yam
Then we travelled up to Teluk Intan for Rojak Ah Chai which is located near the wet market. 

Despite all the good reviews on the internet
we found it so-so.
Finally made it to the Lumut jetty at around 2pm, parked, bought tickets and had a quick lunch of KFC before boarding the hotel ferry at 3.45pm. 

We all know sand-art. Heard of fly-art?
It's just sticky fly paper stuck to the wall
of the ferry...with lots of flies stuck to it!
Stayed at the Pangkor Island Beach Resort, formerly known as Pan Pacific. It's pretty much like a back-to-nature kind of place surrounded by lush forest with close up views of peacocks and monitor lizards that walk about the resort grounds, hornbills that fly about from tree to tree and monkeys that hang around the balconies on the lookout for food left out in the open.

Peacock that made itself very at home
on our balcony railing, hence the close-up shot
Monkey stealing snacks from the room next door
because they forgot to lock their balcony door!
Tiger toy placed on roof to scare away the monkeys,
not sure whether it's effective or not.
We took to the beach on the morning of day 2. The weather was absolutely perfect, slightly cloudy with just the right amount of sun so that we didn't get toasted. CoolTeen and SweetTeen went kayakking and saw some very large jellyfish through the crystal clear waters.

In the afternoon we did some archery where I found out that I have very poor aiming skills (fortunately I didn't accidentally shoot a peacock or monkey!). The wind was rather strong, so hubby and our friend had a fun time flying kites that we had brought along.

Our kite soaring high in the sky :)
We went to Pangkor town for dinner, at a restaurant recommended by a friend whose husband's hometown is in Pangkor itself. Taxi to anywhere in town is a standard rate of RM6 per person. 

Dinner here on day 1
Dinner here on day 2. Food was good
I must say that I looked forward to the daily hotel breakfast buffet, which had such a large variety of food, both Eastern and Western. 

The morning we spent some time taking photos on the beach before checking out at 12noon. 
Lovely rainbow in the sky after a slight drizzle
Headed to Sitiawan for lunch at a famous restaurant, but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone because of the poor level of hygiene observed.

Then it was off to visit Kellie's Castle, an unfinished castle near Batu Gajah. Entrance fee is RM5. CoolTeen was hoping to spot some paranormal activity but everything seemed calm and peaceful.

Reached KL around 7pm and had claypot chicken rice for dinner at Heun Kee. We had to queue but it was worth the wait as my family loves claypot chicken rice and this is one of the best in the city.

It was a relaxing and unhurried vacation, truly what we needed to recharge our batteries before going back to our very busy daily routine.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Removing Some Wisdom (Teeth)

My son complained of discomfort in his jaw, so I took him to the dentist. I'm glad he takes good care of his teeth because the last time he went to the dentist was 9 years ago, when he was 10 years old.

The dentist took a look at his teeth, shook his head and gave us the news...all 4 of my son's wisdom teeth were coming out all at once!

X-Ray of CoolTeen's teeth
From the x-ray, the dentist explained that the 4 wisdom teeth were pushing  his other teeth out of alignment. CoolTeen said that he wanted to wear braces to straighten his teeth and so the dentist recommended the extraction of all the wisdom teeth because there was not enough space in his jaw for all his teeth.

So an appointment was made and on Wednesday I brought him for his tooth surgery...he had 2 teeth taken out at once. The surgery took about 1.5 hours because it involved cutting the lower left tooth in half and removing it a piece at a time in order not to damage the nerves which were lying very close to the tooth. The upper left tooth was much easier to extract. Then it was antibiotics   for a week and pain medication whenever needed....and also soft food (which CoolTeen really dislikes. He's a meat-loving guy!) 

The dreaded dentist's chair!
Need to sign consent form
In a month's time I'll bring him to the dentist again to remove the other 2 teeth...not a nice way to spend my time but like what my fellow blogger Yuin Ting says - we need to fix our 'production defects'.

The first thing hubby said to CoolTeen when he got home from work was, "So you lost some of your wisdom?" As expected, CoolTeen with his swollen jaw didn't think it was very funny!