Engagement Rings

Ok let’s just admit that engagement rings serve no real purpose besides accessorising and showing off. Any two persons can get married without being engaged, hence this whole thing is just a Western tradition that we imported, seemingly just for the fun of it. It’s bad enough that we adopted this “tradition”, but Singaporeans decided to go ahead to dumb it down even further with the stipulation that the engagement ring has to be 3 times of the man’s salary!

So assuming the groom to be is an average joe drawing a decent salary of $3,000. The ring will have to cost at least $9,000! Here’s what $9,000 can buy you:

  • 3 27″ iMac with Retina 5K display
  • 7 pairs of Christian Louboutin pumps
  • 3% of a $300,000 housing loan
  • Trip to Japan for 2, inclusive of lodging and food, and with change to spare
  • 1,500 McDonald’s hotcake meals

So to spend that amount on a rock is just… I can’t even find the right word to describe it. Absolutely wasteful comes to mind. But I suppose it’s none of my business after all.


Guide to a fuss free wedding

So you’re getting hitched and you’re wondering what’s the most cost effective way to get married. Here’s a piece of advice I wish I took: elope.

Of course “eloping” in Singapore is a little less elegant and a little more complicated than driving to Las Vegas for a midnight rendezvous, if you want your marriage to be locally certified. To do so:

  1. Decide on a date to elope
  2. File for your marriage, meaning let the ROM know when you want to elope. The earliest date you can file is three months before your actual date, meaning if you decided to elope on 1 April, the date will only be available for filing from 1 January onward.
  3. A week before your actual date, you need to go down to the ROM to sign some papers plus take some oaths.
  4. On the actual date, arrive on time, bring along two witnesses (you can grab anyone off the street and pay him a token sum), take your vows and then be pronounced man and wife.

Paperwork costs $26, which is dirty cheap!

If you’re still going for a traditional elopement, all you need to do is to register your marriage overseas, and you can come back to Singapore as a married couple. There is no need to re-register your marriage! Although the process to be registered overseas can be quite complicated and may require more documentation.

So there you have it. The best and only way to get married.

Chinese Invitation Wordings

We have been pouring over our invitation drafts, especially the Chinese text. There’s a certain order for everything, yet there are also exceptions. The ladies from M********* are my age so I certainly don’t expect them to know everything as well, so the following is a collection of online resources that I used as reference:

Chinese Wedding Invitation Word Guide by Nineteen Design Studio
This was my go to website as it has a very elegant pictorial guide on what means what and what goes where. Very nifty!

Chinese Wedding Invitations Wording | 結婚喜帖內容 by Best Gifts for Wedding
The website took the information from Chinese Wedding Guide, but as the latter has some unicode issues on the page, all of the Chinese text is unreadable.

In addition, it is important to write the correct Chinese date equivalent. This site provides a conversion in calendar format, which is very handy. You’ll also need to know the Chinese name of the year, and while I can’t find any sites with a simple compilation of the names, I did come across this site. As you can see, 2016 is the Year of the Red Fire Monkey, and when you click on 2016 it tells you that it is the 丙申 year.

You’ll be glad to know that we are 90% done with the design, just waiting for the last draft from our vendor!

Getting engaged

I’ve reached marriageable age, which means it is the period of engagement and marriage for all my peers. Just today I saw on Facebook 3 separate updates of friends getting engaged, accompanied with a mandatory couple-hugging-with-girl-showing-off-ring-ala-success-baby-style photo.

I’m very pleased that many people are discovering love and deciding to take the plunge into a $300,000 HDB debt and a $50,000 wedding debt, I feel it is important to one’s emotional well being to find a partner to ride out the tough times with.

In terms of timeline though, I find myself greatly disconnected with most of my peers*. Having been legally married and a home owner since last year, I mentally muse to myself, “been there, done that” whenever I see such updates. The need to post anything on social media still perplexes me, and needless to say I think 90% of the people on Facebook do not know that I have crossed the two major milestones of my life.

Not that it matters, though. The truth is there are very few people I want to share good news with. Family is obligatory. Beyond that, there are only a handful: FX, Sponge, I, S and V; all reachable via WhatsApp instantaneously.

I don’t think you can find someone else who treasures privacy as much as I do. 😀

* FX informed me that one of our schoolmates got married, had a kid and is now expecting her second child! Holy smokes!

Songs List Part 2

Thought I’d expand on the original list, so here goes:

  1. Mr Roboto by Styx (1983)
  2. Karma Chameleon by Culture Club (1983)
  3. (What A) Wonderful World by Herman’s Hermits (1965)
  4. You Take My Breath Away by Rex Smith (1979)
  5. Nights Are Forever Without You by England Dan & John Ford Coley (1976)
  6. December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night) by The Four Seasons (1975)

Wonderful World is a new find on the radio. The lyrics are adorable:

Don’t know much about geography
Don’t know much trigonometry
Don’t know much about algebra
Don’t know what a slide rule is for
But I know that one and one is two
And if this one could be with you
What a wonderful world this would be

I think it is important to introduce my young readers to real autotune-free music. Real talent is hard to come by nowadays.

Also, December 1963 is highly inappropriate but it reminds me of Sherlock and co. so that’s fine!

Facial Cleansing

(Again, I am running out of things to write about)

When I hit puberty at the ripe old age of 11, pimples started emerging and I had no choice but to start on a facial cleansing routine as prescribed by my mom. I basically used whatever she was using, and what I didn’t know then is that we all have different skin types and not all facial products are suitable or even beneficial to our skin.

In the course of teenhood and for much of my early 20s, I used whatever that was available in the bathroom. In 10 years I have experimented with Kose, Clinique, Fancl and finally Dermalogica, which was recommended by my sister’s beautician. For the past two years we have religiously used D products, and although the results were not that great, they were still acceptable. And they didn’t come cheap!

A while back I was introduced to the site Beautypedia by Paula’s Choice, it rates beauty and skincare products based on the ingredients used. To my horror, D products were rated the worst (!!!). I don’t understand many of the mambo jambo scientific terms, but apparently D products contain irritants that are harmful to our skin in the long run. I highly suspect that is why our skin got better for the first few months, then worse after the initial effects had already worn off. Unfortunately I had already made my routine bulk purchase of items, so we had no choice but to finish them up.

While we trudged through the last bottles of D, I bought Paula’s Choice’s BHA exfoliant to combat my blackheads 😦 . Then as all the internet knowledge unfolded upon my screen, I joined Sephora as a member and have since bought a few other “highly recommended” facial products. The first purchase was a clay mask from Clinique, followed by a moisturiser with sunscreen (ALWAYS USE SUNSCREEN), and then an oil control mask for the sister. After a few weeks of usage, I think we both agree that there have been some improvement to our face!

My enthusiasm to rid my sister of acne extended into the pharmaceutical realm, and at the drugstore I bought Benzac 2.5% and Nizoral 1%. Benzac is God sent and has saved our foreheads from zits and ugly bumps! It is now a crucial step in our daily routine, although I fear our skin may develop immunity towards it. Nizoral is a new buy, and although it is marketed as an anti-dandruff shampoo, many have claimed that its anti-fungal properties actually help to combat acne too.

My latest buy from Sephora is First Aid Beauty’s facial cleanser. It was pricey at $16 for 2 oz before discount, but I am quite excited to try it out! Let’s hope it doesn’t burn off my face. I have a tremendous fear of using new products, which is why I force my sister to draw first blood with every new product.

Skincare is an expensive routine. Sigh. 😦

Good news!

I’m super excited to announce my latest findings: I get to keep the car floral decorations!

I don’t know why I thought I had to return them, maybe because the florist will be using silk flowers instead of fresh flowers. I engaged H**** F****** in the end because the prices that Annie (couldn’t abbreviate as “A” is already taken by A) quoted was most reasonable, and she was the only one who suggested using silk flowers. Artificial flowers are of course cheaper, so I was very glad to have that option. Besides, no one really cares about how the car is decorated, right?

styled shoot with deborah (126 of 411)

It will look something like this except our car is white with a roof. But to be honest I am more excited that I get to keep the garland! I will use it to decorate the sofa console after the w.

Note to self: Arrange for someone to remove the decorations before the car person comes to collect the car