Dessert Go-to’s to Beat the Heat in Singapore

Anyone in Singapore, locals and foreigners alike, constantly look for ways to beat the heat. You can go to the beach and take a swim, or you can go to airconditioned malls to shop (or window shop). But if you want to just sit down and chill, there’s no better way to keep cool than to have a nice cold ice kachang. Being one of the staple desserts in Singapore, you can easily find ice kachangs and other cool desserts in food halls and hawkers centres.

Here are some the best places to get your fill:

Jin Jin Hot and Cold Dessert

Jin Jin Hot and Cold Dessert is famously known for their “Gangster Ice”. Liu Mang Bing is a shortened Chinese term that basically translates as Durian/Mango Ice. Liu Mang, coincidentally, means gangster in Chinese hence the name of the dessert. This then has served as a great marketing strategy for Jin Jin. But make no mistake, the Liu Mang Bing is a great dessert to have given the mango cubes, the sweet durian puree, and the condensed milk covering the shaved ice. They also have another famous iced sweet dessert called Power Chendol which is definitely a must-try as well.

Mei Heong Yuan Dessert

What sets Mei Heong Yuan’s ice kachang apart from others is the shaved ice itself. They use a more high-tech ice shaving machine that produces thinner ice than the traditional ones. There are times when the shaved ice can get gritty and rough, but not here. Once you try their ice kachang, you’ll immediately notice the difference in texture and smoothness of their shaved ice with that of other stalls. Two of their famous ice kachangs are the sesame-almond shaved ice and the mango shaved ice.

Annie’s Peanut Ice Kachang

If you’re tired of having the same kind of ice kachang, you should try Annie’s Peanut Ice Kachang. If you’re wondering what’s different, it’s in the name. That’s right, peanuts! Here, ground peanuts are added to the ice kachang. You might say that that sounds like it isn’t much but wait ‘til you try it. Because peanuts are not a common addition to ice kachangs, you’ll have quite a new experience. The ground peanuts add a certain crunchiness along with the sweetness of other toppings.

Dove Desserts

Though Dove Desserts have ice kachang, they are better known for their chendol. In fact, a lot of people say they have some of the best chendol in Singapore. Chendol is an iced dessert that contains green rice flour jelly, coconut milk, and gula melaka or palm sugar syrup. Those three key ingredients are highlighted here in Dove Desserts. The homemade green jelly has the gentle taste and scent of pandan with a soft and bouncy texture. The coconut milk and the gula melaka are also fresh and definitely superior in quality.

5 Amazing Ways to Give a New Spin to Your Old Furniture

With 2019 already starting, it’s high time you greet the year with a new interior that looks fresh, calm, and inviting – and while adding a paint job toy our walls can be easier, it might be a little trickier with the furniture.

But the good news is there’s no need to ditch your existing furniture. Here’s how you can give them a new spin to work with your new home interior’s design and layout (or even just improve them after being in your house for a long time):

            1. Oil it

Wood can dry out and develop cracks over time, which is why one way to take care of it and maintain its appearance is by simply applying a wood polish or conditioner to the wood’s surface using a cloth pad, and letting it dry for a solid thirty minutes.

            2. Give it a new polish

If your wood furniture has a worn finish, you can easily restore it by giving it a good polish with fine paste wax that’s appropriate for the type of wood, though you may have to strip off the old finish by scraping it off using super-fine steel wool along with a wax remover.

            3. Add a new coat of paint

Wood can also be painted to add interesting contrast to your interior wall colors, as well as make for beautiful accent pieces that are sure to stand out.

Believe it or not, you can even do the same for leather upholstery. There are specific acrylic paints you can get that are dedicated for painting leather, which is great news if you want to make your leather couch match the rest of your home decor.

            4. Darken it with a stain

Staining wood can be intimidating at first, but when you get the hang of it, you can darken your furniture as a way to provide the adequate amount of contrast to the light and color in your interior walls.

Stains also make wooden furniture appear that much richer and more sophisticated as a result, making cheap stools, cabinets, and shelves look a lot more expensive than they really are.

            5. Give it a deep clean

Whether it’s your wooden chairs or your leather sofa, the first thing you need to do to take care of them is to give them a deep clean. For wood, this means getting rid of the varnish and stains using a specific chemical and super-fine steel wool.

For sofas and other types of upholstery, this is best taken care of using a vacuum cleaner with different attachments that can reach in tight spots that can house dust and dirt.

Organizer Items Everyone Should Have at Home

Everyone needs the right tools and systems that work for them to turn their homes around from cluttered areas into functional spaces, but they don’t have to be expensive. In fact, you can get these items right now and start getting organized to make sure you have a smooth 2019 ahead of you:

  1. Drawer dividers

Having too much storage space can sometimes be just as bad as having too little storage space, so by having a divider, you can partition that space to have just enough for the items while also keeping them from mixing into each other.

If you can’t find dividers, you can always make them on your own using strips of wood panel screwed together.

  • Baskets

No matter what room you use them in, baskets are always a great storage option that keeps visual clutter to a minimum and turns messy rooms into functional areas with ample space.

Instead of baskets, you can also opt for dedicated plastic storage boxes where you can easily house all kinds of items without needing to worry about where to find them later on.

  • Multiple trash cans

When it comes to properly getting rid of trash no matter where you are in your home, you can never have just one. Place a trash can in different areas to serve different purposes and for different types of trash.

For instance, you can have one near the front door of your home for any letters and utility bills that you’ve already read, or for getting rid of scraps of paper and magazines, while another trash can could be placed in your kitchen for dealing with food scraps.

To make waste disposal even easier, be sure to line your bins with a garbage bag to keep trash in one piece and allow for easier removal.

  • Holder for cleaning supplies

One thing that doesn’t get enough attention in your home is the cabinet or drawer for your cleaning supplies. In fact, these can fill up fast with all kinds of sprays and bottles, so having a way to organize them is crucial.

Ideally, should have a box, basket, or any kind of storage container or cabinet dedicated for them to make them easier to find.

  • Custom labels

When you have different items stored in identical boxes or containers, it’s important to know which item is stored in which container, which makes labels an important item to have in your home.

The best part about labels is that you can have them in different shapes, types, and sizes, whether it’s rectangular handwritten tags on baskets, chalk markers on jars, or even a dedicated label-maker for your utensil drawers.

The Importance of Warming Up and Cooling Down

Warming up and cooling down is fundamental in any workout. Sadly, many people neglect the importance of these two and immediately start their workouts. There are some who warm up but don’t cool down and there are others who do the opposite. To highlight the importance of these two components more, here are the reasons why you should warm up before and exercise and cool down after.

Why Warm Up?

To increase blood flow

Warming up allows your heart to pump out more blood and improve blood circulation all throughout the body. This encourages blood to flow more effectively towards muscle tissues and gets the muscles ready for any kind of physical activity. In addition, warming up allows oxygenated blood to flow all throughout the body better and helps increase body temperature so that the muscles can adjust to the intensity of the workout easily.

To prepare the heart

Warming up not only lets your heart pump out more blood efficiently, it also prepares the heart to meet the demands on the circulatory system made by physical exercise. When you go from zero to a hundred without having a warm-up, your heart might not be able to efficiently pump out enough blood. Without enough blood circulating around the body, the muscles will also be deprived of energy and fuel. The heart might also have difficulty to adjust to sudden rigorous exercise and that might definitely lead to a dangerous situation for the person.

To prevent injury

Injury prevention is probably one of the most important reasons why you need to warm up. As said earlier, warming up increases your body temperature. This means that your muscles can easily stretch and contract without any risk of injury. Surely, there are some of you who have made the mistake of going to an ActiveSG gym and immediately hit the dumbbell racks only to find that you’re not able to push your muscles to their full potential.

Why Cool Down?

To gradually lower heart rate

Exercising clearly makes your heart beat substantially faster. Having time to cool down allows your heart rate to lower little by little. This is important because when you stop suddenly and your heart rate is still high, you might feel dizzy and you may even faint. So cooling down helps our body regain balance in terms of temperature and heart rate.

To reduce muscle soreness

You typically incorporate a lot of static stretching when cooling down. This is possible in a cool-down and not in a warm-up because your joints and muscles are already warm. When you stretch, you’re helping the muscles flush out any excess waste that would otherwise cause cramping and stiffness if they stayed there. This reduces the likelihood of a muscle getting sore after a workout and also improve muscle flexibility in the long run. 

Reasons Why You Should Go Cycling

You can’t deny that cycling around Singapore can be quite a pleasant experience. The trails have sights you definitely should not miss and cycling around places can be really fun too. Aside from being another form of transportation, cycling also has a lot of benefits.

Cycling is good for the heart

It is already known that cycling is a great form of cardiovascular exercise. The cardiovascular muscles will be able to pump out blood more efficiently especially during rigorous activity. Obviously, this also improves the circulation of blood throughout the body. Consequently, this helps our resting heart rate. This means that you won’t feel like your heart is going to burst out of your chest after a simple physical activity.

Basically cheap transportation

If you can use a buy to go to work or school then, by all means, try it. Clearly, you don’t have to spend on transportation fees. You also won’t have to pay for gas, unlike motorcycles and cars. Plus, even though bicycles still need maintenance, they’re still pretty simple and cheap compared to motorcycles and cars.


You’re helping to save the environment by cycling, just going to get it out there. Obviously, unlike cars, motorcycles, buses and etc., bikes don’t emit any harmful gases because they don’t need fuel. Cycling, even if it’s a small change, can help us save nature.

Can protect against pollutants also

Aside from being environment-friendly, cyclists are also somehow protected from air pollutants. Surprisingly, it has been found that cyclists are less exposed to polluted air compared to vehicle drivers and passengers.

Can help burn some calories

Cycling for an hour can burn about four hundred to a thousand calories depending on your weight and the intensity of your cycling. Cycling might also be better compared to jogging when it comes to weight loss. When you jog, all your weight falls on your legs, which might make you more prone to injury. But when you cycle, your weight is supported by the seat, reducing the chances of injuring your lower body and enabling you to continue exercising for weight loss.

You get to explore

Cycling can be a great way to go around places you’ve never been to before. You can also improve your navigation skills and sense of direction because you get to figure the routes out for yourself. If you’re looking for an adventure, turn off your GPS and cycle around! You might even learn about places and see interesting sights you’ve never visited before.

Great way to relax

Cyclists know how great a stress reliever cycling is. You can go out on the weekends and just cycle around places or routes for fun. It’s also a great way to start your day and energize yourself in the morning and you can even try doing it at night to take your mind off all the stress before going to bed.

5 Reasons Why You Should Get Started into DIY Woodworking

Woodworking doesn’t look like the most glamorous work you can do at first, since it requires a lot of effort, careful planning, and patience. But if you have the knack for it, then it can be a very rewarding hobby.

Here are a few reasons why you should start doing it:

  1. They’re cheaper in the long run

Buying furniture is one way to get you quality that will last a long time, but you don’t always find the right one that suits exactly what you need. They can be hard to find and also get expensive quickly.

The best way to get quality furniture that’s perfect for your home – and your tastes – is by making it yourself. This way, you have more control over how you want

  • You can make repairs to existing furniture

Do you notice any damages to your furniture? Deep scratches? Chipped paint? What about wobbling and unstable chairs and tables? If so, then you can take your DIY skills from your various home projects and put them to good use!

Not only can you make them last for a longer time, but you can even make modifications to your existing furniture as you see fit.

  • It offers a lot of versatility

DIY woodworking not only lets you make and repair furniture, but also gives you the tools to spruce up every area of your home the way you want it. It also lets you do things on your own without having to call a contractor for everything.

And because of its versatility, you can even branch out and pick up on other skills, such as metalworking and home automation, other than just woodworking.

  • You pick up a valuable skill set

Carpentry requires a lot of careful planning and execution, especially when it comes to choosing the right materials and tools, so there’s a good chance you won’t always get it right the first time.

And aside from the skills, you also have with you a set of quality tools you can use for all kinds of projects, and will last you a lifetime when you give them the proper care and maintenance.

  • The results are definitely worth it

At the end of the day, there’s nothing quite like seeing the finished product and taking a moment to admire how gorgeous it looks.

From large home renovations to simple construction projects, you’re guaranteed to be proud of the accomplishments over the things that you spent a lot of time working over.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your tools and get started today

5 Tips and Tricks to Maximize Space in Your HDB Flat

When you’re spring cleaning or just doing a clean-up for your HDB flat, you may realize at one point that you just have too much stuff that you have trouble throwing away, whether it’s furniture that has been in your family forever or something with sentimental value to you.

And with HDB flats in Singapore getting even smaller, every square centimeter of room now comes at a premium.

Fortunately, maximizing breathing room for your small HDB flat doesn’t have to be too stressful. Here are five amazing ideas for getting the most out of your limited space:

1. Utilizing under-the-bed storage

Adding hidden compartments for your bed let you store practically anything you want while keeping the dust off of them at the same time. And because it’s under your bed, it doesn’t have to be an eyesore!

Your under-the-bed compartment doesn’t even have to be strictly for storage – you can modify it to turn it into a sliding table for anything that suits your fancy.

2. The bedside study table

If you’re having trouble looking for a study area but your HDB flat can’t accommodate a desk for you to do so, you can turn your bedside into a makeshift study area simply by adding a shelf or two.

This way, you can use your bed both as a chair for studying, and as a bed if you want to take a break. Who knew studying could feel so comfortable?

3. The flip-out bed

Say goodbye to messy rooms and uncomfortable sleeping bags! This platform bed can work whether you love to have friends staying over or simply want a new way to save space by combining both your bed and your study table.

4. Wall-mounted tables

Dining tables take up a lot of space when they’re not used, so why not just bolt them to the walls?

By having a wall-mounted dining table instead of a regular one, you can utilize more space in your dining area by simply tucking it back, and your home will look a lot neater as a result.

5. Using built-in storage walls

The best way to maximize space is by making it look like you don’t have a lot of stuff, and you can do this by hiding it in the walls.  

While it may seem expensive at first, the end result will definitely be worth it since you can store almost anything, from board games, consoles, and even CDs for your home entertainment system.

The same goes for dedicated storage spaces in your HDB flat: if you have a dedicated floor-to-ceiling area, you can disguise it by using chalkboard paint on panels.

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