Sunday, October 11, 2020

Going places : central Ciudad de Mexico (CDMX) in a glance

 Ciudad de Mexico (CDMX) means capital of Mexico.. a very colorful city which always being misunderstood by outsiders. Thanks to its high altitude, the weather is always cool and chilly all year long. You may notice the changes of four seasons but never too extremely hot or cold.. it is just nice and perfect for a daily stroll or bicycle ride. If you are a first timer, this is a list of must go places in central CDMX:

                                                    Aquario Inbursa - similar to Aquaria 

1) Polanco : Avenida Masaryk, Lincoln Park, Museo Sumayya, Aquario Bursa

Stroll around the posh Avenida Masaryk street lined with designer boutiques and artesanal stuff. Have a coffee or visit the morning market (every Saturdays) at Lincoln park. Walk a bit to check out the Antara shopping mall (it has a public play ground infront of Hamleys), Museo Sumayya and Museo Jumex. Bring your kids to enjoy the fish at Aquario Bursa.

2) Chapultepec : Park, Zoologico, Chapultepec Castle

Check out the huge Chapultepec Park for a picnic, a jog or even a boat ride. There is a train inside the park for you to enjoy the scenery and a merry go round to entertain the kids. A lot of local merchandise and food are sold here. Don't forget to visit the free public zoo.Also visit the Chapultepec Castle up on the hill to learn about Mexico history and enjoy the view.


Outside Palais de Bella Artes

Inside!
Pretty wall at Calle de Condesa (near Calle de Madero)

Calle de Madero is always alive !

3) Centro historico: Zocalo, Palais de Bella Artes, Calle de Madero, Avenida Reforma, Ciudadela

Get on the Avenida Reforma towards Zocalo by car or the various tourist buses to enjoy the historic and modern buildings assimilate together. Stop near Palais de Bella Artes (Palace of Beautiful Arts) and enjoy the many historic buildings around it. Walk through Calle de Madero (Wood Road?) to find small shops selling beautiful handcrafts and rows of coffee shops... at the end of this road you will find the famous Zocalo - a place where they declare independence and a center of various celebration. This place resembles Dataran Merdeka and its colorful, historic buildings around it. A MUST SEE. And its free! If you're looking to buy souvenirs, go to none other than Ciudadela, you can find all sorts of souvenirs here.

4) Condesa & Roma Norte

These two are photo worthy places which are lines with lots of hipster coffee shops and bars.

Some traveling tips :

1)Best public transport to stroll the cities will be the hop on hop off buses and metro line buses. 

2)Rent the public bicycles to enjoy the historical buildings and amazing views. 

3)The metro subway train connects most important places in the city but beware of pick pockets.

4)Wear your most comfortable shoes and clothes - usually shirts, jackets, jeans and sneakers are sufficient

5)Always check the weather forecast! The weather changes are sometimes quite extreme in CDMX.

6)Always alert with your surroundings - either from unwanted bad attention (thief, pickpocket) or the earthquake alert (sismo). Be in a green zone (safe zone) when you stroll around this humongous city. Best to keep yourself at the touristy places and avoid the shabby and small alleys

7) Learn few basic Spanish language ;) it may be extremely beneficial for you.


Sunday, August 30, 2020

Life in a glance-Mexico

 When I first step on the soil of Mexico in April 2018, precisely in the capital, Ciudad de Mexico (CDMX) my first impression is ' Wow, nice weather!' thanks to its high altitude location.And since we just completed a grueling 30+ hours flight journey with one transit (KUL-LHR-MEX) and 3 kids in tow including a 45 days old baby, we just skip the amusement later and focused to cure our jetlag..

Luckily the company provides a decent apartment in the heart of Polanco, a nice neighbourhood in CDMX... wikipedia describes Polanco as this :

Polanco is an affluent neighborhood in the Miguel Hidalgo borough of Mexico City. Polanco is an upscale community, famed for its luxury shopping on Avenida Presidente Masaryk, one of the most expensive streets in the Americas, as well as for the numerous prominent cultural institutions located within the neighborhood, such as the Museo Soumaya and the Colección Jumex. Polanco is often called the "Beverly Hills of Mexico", having one of the country's densest concentrations of luxury shopping, with the most Michelin star restaurants, high-net-worth individuals, upscale hotels, and diplomatic missions and embassies. Additionally, it is one of the most desirable real estate markets in Latin America.


Well, I must admit the neighborhood is pretty cool and most locals and expats living here are loaded with money (us excluded). I like the fact that there is a 24 hours supermarket located at ground floor of our apartment, a posh branded boutique mall beside our building and many green parks around us.. also I like the fact that most people walk or ride bicycles everywhere. They have an efficient public transports like buses and metro,but if you're a first timer and outsiders please be more aware of your belongings as you can be easily spotted - not by your looks though because our skin complexion might be quite similar with Mexican, but the fact that you cant speak their language and also if you wear tudung like me.

After few days, the reality hit me. As this is my first time actually living abroad, i just realized that visiting foreign countries is NOT the same as actually living in a foreign country.. I immediately realize the challenges - language barriers, security and safety issues, lack of halal food and muslim community, not many Malaysians around, different culture and high living cost..the list goes on and on. Additional challenge for me to adapt with my just habis pantang baby! Overall it took me 4 months to battle my emotional issues.. I settled down when my kids are safe in school, even the baby went to school when she was 5 months old, and this mommy joined the bandwagon of newly enrolled students! Yay! 

I enrolled for Spanish class mainly to talk to my kids' teachers and also for other domestic chores as well like buying groceries and ordering food. This was when I felt like human again, enjoying my me time before the chaos begin again when I fetched the kids from school at around 3pm. Good thing is the language centre, CEPE was also in the neighborhood, about 20 mins walking or 10 mins on bike.

As time goes by, more Malaysians were coming hence we made more friends, some even turned family. Our weekends were filled with jalan2 inside and outside the city.. or small gatherings among ourselves... i will furnish the jalan2 part more later...

After 2 years, we started to feel at ease with our routine here.. but of course never a day passed without me thinking about Malaysia, my families, the food and my job that I left temporarily... 

to be continued😎

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Breastpump comparison

 I've been using few breast pumps for the last 8 years and thought this comparison might be useful for new mommies out there.. well, actually the best breast pump for you should address all your priority needs.. so identify those first, then only choose. My priority features are double electric pump, compact and mobile.

1) Medela freestyle double electric pump

This was my first pump and obviously most expensive.. I bought this just because there were not many brands available 8 years ago.. the big names were just Medela and Spectra at that time. So I choose this since I need a double pump to pump at work. So far it is quite durable and reliable too.. however by the 5th year the battery was dead but I still can use it with power point.

Pros: Durable, double pump, sleek, pretty, good suction, has 2 funnel sizes to choose, long lasting battery time, comes with a chic bag n cooler bag, has hands free clip feature

Con: EXPENSiVE! Last i check the price is about RM2,000.Many parts so leceh to wash and assemble, quite noisy

2) Avent manual pump

I bought this as back up incase my Medela has issue.. but dont really like it coz produce low yield and need strength to pump it.. or maybe i just dont know the correct way to use it! guess manual is really not for me😛 But few of my friends really like this manual pump.

Pros: Sturdy, less parts hence easier to assemble and wash, cheap

Cons: its manual😂 and single pump

3) Cimilre F1 double electric pump

Since my Medela batteries were dead i need a new pump so i can mobilize and pump anywhere. Bought this for my 3rd kid in 2018.. I actually like it. With quarter of Medela price, I would say it match the performance and yield.

Pros: Easy to assemble, sturdy, less parts compared to medela, light weight, less noisy compared to Medela, cheaper of course, long lasting battery, has hands free feature

Cons: I dont have anything that I dont like about this pump.. the price is quite affordable, i think around RM500 now

4) Treenie Konvito double electric pump


I bought this since both my Medela and Cimilre were left in Mexico and i needed one quickly as my 4th baby was due soon! While naturally people upgrade, i downgraded my pump as I was curious why some breastpumps are too expensive while some are too cheap?? So i resorted to one of the cheapest in the market, Treenie Konvito. I bought at RM129 from FabulousMom recently.I was quite sceptical at first coz apsal murah sangattt.. consult hubby about it and he said try je la, kalo x best pun padan je dgn investment. So i tried. Amazingly it works wonders.. as currently I am a stay at home mom, i just used sparingly to keep some stocks when my baby is left at home for a short while, or to pump when I am out and about..so I just pumped about once per day..it works perfectly for me. With that price I totally satisfied! But if you're a working mom and looking for durable pump for pumping few times a day, perhaps you need to invest on a better priced one. 

Pros: Super cheap!!!! use usb port to charge, quietest compared to Medela and Cimilre, compact size, less parts, easy to wash and assemble

Cons: No timer, no LED screen, no hands free feature, short battery time hence need to charge every 3-4 times usage, only one standard funnel size available.

Hope this review will help those in need😃

All images from google.com

Simple and Easy Choc Chip Cookies Recipe

 I am an avid cookie monster, so do my kids! I've tried many recipes so far but this one is the easiest and most delicious for my palate, I must say. Whenever my kids beg to bake something, this is always my favourite choice :) Hence I'm sharing with you guys.

The best and easiest choc chip cookies recipe

Ingredients :

250g butter 

250g brown sugar

100g granulated sugar

500g flour

2 eggs

500g blended oatmeal

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

200g chop chips (preferably Hersheys/Beryls)


Cream together the butter, sugar, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla extract - not too long. In a separate bowl, mix flour, blended oatmeal, baking powder and salt.

Then mix both mixture together and add in chocolate chips.

Chill the dough for 20 mins, or sometimes I cant wait and skip this part..

Arrange bite sized dough on a tray lined with baking sheet.

Heat oven and bake for 20 mins at 150degC.


Done!

Monday, September 09, 2019

Totally new experience: HolaMexico!

Well, people from Malaysia will usually NOT choose Mexico as their travel destination. Why? I guess due to its location which is very very far from our country (some of us might say, alang2 pegi sana baik pegi US terus..) and also due to limited promotion and knowledge transfer from both countries... I mean, yes we heard the name of the country before, and we usually imagine cowboys, natives (Pocahontas? Merida?) narcs and drugs cartels.. nothing fancy or exciting though.

I was thinking the same as well.. even I never would want to go to US because it is too far.. with small kids on tow, I would rather let my husband went alone for his few business trips.Until the day that we were all forced to move to Mexico.. well the nicer term was my husband was transferred to Mexico fork work and all of us moved there.

It was a memorable and rather fancy experience for me. Reminiscing 1.5 years back, we fled to the new, mysterious country after 45 days I delivered my third baby.. alot of people prayed for our smooth journey, and alhamdulillah, after a total 24 hours flight time (2 legs,1 transit) later, we arrived to Mexico City. Since that day, our life changed.. the routine, the people, the culture, the food.. everything were new and strange. And exciting. I remembered we were confused,excited,happy,scared and sad at the same time.. no words can describe the feeling of settling in a new place, until you experience it yourself. I've been to many countries before for vacations, mostly to touristy places.. but this, i tell you is hell different from what I ever expect or experience.

I will write in detail about tips on adapting to new surroundings.. until then.

Monday, September 02, 2019

Come back alert!

Salam and hye all!
Yes.. finally I decided to make a come back in blogging world.. after a 2 years hiatus. Like most of you I turned to Instagram for my sharings... but now since my Insta is dedicated to record my personal milestone and life anecdotes, I will write about my public sharing here..

My current interest is obviously motherhood and travel and also tips on living abroad.. since it is now almost 1.5 years I live away from my home country, I have lots of tips, tricks and experience to share, which hopefully will be beneficial to you and even myself in the future😄

And please pray for my consistency in writing😁

Love lots, Shiera I.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Reminiscing 2016

Well, its been a while since I write my personal post here.

2016 was a colourful year.. and i hope 2017 will bring more good things ahead :)

My 2016 in a glance (if i can fairly summarize everything here) :

1. Since early of the year we attended the weekly kursus haji at the mosque near our house. We had appealed for Hajj this year after i declined the offer in 2014 due to pregnancy.. however His plan superseded all plans. We were not selected - nak dijadikan sebab adalah my appeal letter was missing/did not reach Tabung Haji! Well maybe belum rezeki.Tahun ni kami akan cuba lagi :)

2. My company's major restructuring that affected our job scope and way we do things. In a nutshell, we need to do more work with less resource. A number of friends got laid off.. so things were not the same again.

3. Slow global economy and low oil prices affected our lifestyle too.. we tend to be more prudent and cautious with our spending.

4. Our family trip to KK and Kundasang was the highlight of our family event. KK was SO HOT at that time while Kundasang's whether is worth the 3 hours hilly and bumpy ride!! We got to view Kinabalu Mountain every day, thanks to the clear air and good weather. We can even see the mountain peak post earthquake (tanah runtuh and different peak shape was evident).

5. Kids are getting bigger and cheekier.. Amna is certainly everybody's sweetheart, while Adni makin besar makin clingy and mengada :P Managed to completely wean her off in few days before the year ends.. so she is a proud wean off child at 2 years n 1 month. Not so far from my target (2 years)

6. Adni has severe eczema since Sept and we were in constant battle with her eczema which sometime makes both of us tired and cranky at the same time. Mind you its not easy to see your child constantly scratching hard her hand and legs until it bleeds.. and then we moisturized and applied medicine only to see her scratch again and the cycle continues. We met countless doctors and dermatologists. We learnt new type of treatment like wet wraps... we even tried many type of moisturizer and medicine just to see which suit her best. Our current favourite now is Mustela brand range.. it suits Adni very well. Cuma harga nya tak berapa suit Mommy's pocket huhu mahal gila! But not the most expensive in town i guess. You can find the products in Mothercare or selected pharmacies including Prince Court Hospital's.

And finally during our last visit, doctor prescribes antibiotics and antivirus since she might had infections due to constant scratching and perhaps contact with people/surroundings.. her condition improved a bit now. Owh just to share once we brought her to the beach and bath her with seawater, and her scars healed like magic. Maybe we should go to the beach more often.

7. I cooked more. Yeay!

8. I completed reading 10 books this year, so yeay!! Do you know that on average each Malaysian only read just 2 books per year, so I am above par i guess :P

9. I joined a whatsapp group that tracked daily Quran reading.. so more or less improve the frequency of my Quran recitation. Although i need to admit that i am quite lagged behind due to the time of the month and also, not proud to admit that some days i am too tired/busy to recite. Need to improve more in 2017.

10. I forgot this point earlier  but among the best thing happened in 2016 was I met Freshpicks and instantly fell in love with the product range. It is home made with love by my uni senior and using premium ingredients.. if you are like me who dream to make your own skincare to ensure the best ingredients to be used to your skin.. then Freshpicks is the best for you. Seriously! I really enjoyed the homemade soaps that is enriched with essential oils.. wangi sangat. Not to mention my most awaited product -homemade deodorant!!! OK i can rant for 10 pages about Freshpicks alone, so i better stop here. Dont worry i will be updating about Freshpicks from time to time :)
 May you to had a great 2016 and may 2017 be better.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Vanilla latte Body Scrub

Untuk penggemar kopi, Freshpicks ada produk Vanilla Latte Body scrub dan Coffee Soap tau :)
Produk2 berasaskan kopi sangat sesuai sebagai ejen de-stress selepas penat seharian bekerja dan/atau melakukan tugas harian.. dengan bau yang sangat best (ever wonder kenapa ramai yang addicted to coffee??) dan mampu membersihkan kulit dan membangkitkan seri secara semulajadi (natural glow) :)

Antara bahan2 premium yang digunakan dan fungsi2 nya :

Pure Coconut Oil – Minyak kelapa berfungsi melembapkan kulit dan menyuburkan kesihatan kulit
Castor Oil – Castor oil adalah minyak yang sangat bagus untuk menyamakan tona kulit.
Coffee- Caffeine ada efek perangsang untuk menegangkan kulit, merawat selulit,juga kaya khasiat untuk anti antiaging
Sugar- Mungkin ramai yang belum tahu, gula sangat bagus sebagai ejen pengelupasan yg lembut pada kulit dan mampu membersihkan sel2 kulit mati.
Vanilla extracts – sebagai aromaterapi,meredakan stress,kurangkan mual(jika hamil), anti inflamasi,kaya vit B untuk mencerahkan kulit


Dapatkan body scrub Freshpicks sekarang :) Cuma RM15 untuk 50 gram.. boleh tahan sampai 4-6 bulan tau!

Cod available in KLCC/Setiawangsa | Postage fee : RM 8 (SM) / RM12 (EM)

WA sekarang 019 3755 133 ataupun layari http://freshpickskualalumpur.com/ untuk pembelian online.

Love lots from your beauty agent!