The Little Princes

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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Goodbye 2005 ... Hello 2006!

Hey, for those reading this, Happy New Year!

This will probably be the last post for 2005. Wasn't particularly a good year for me. Most part of it was spent at home hopping around and nursing my leg. Hope things will be better for 2006. For these last few minutes of 2005, I have decided to spend them at home updating my blog and keeping wifey company. No party for me this year, but I guess counting down to the new year in good health and with someone you love is far better...

No, I will not be sharing my New Year's resolution because I don't have one. Anyway, I never really believe in New Year resolutions cos basically I never end up keeping them. Also, why wait till New Year to try and achieve something?

Finally, here's something funny from two chinese boys to start of your 2006! General_

Cocktail

Have you ever accidentally (or intentionally) mixed different drinks together and formed your own concoction, well, here are two that I have tried and recommend:

Grape Light
Remember the old Fanta Grape that used to be available at hawker centres? If you have a craving for that and cannot find it at the drinks stall, try mixing 2 parts Coke Light with 1 part Aloe-V Grape. The result, pseudo Fanta Grape with Aloe bits. The bonus, reduced calories!

IPPT Sling
This is rumoured and sworn by some to help you pass your IPPT. Mix Red Bull with 100 Plus and drink it about half-hour before starting the static stations. I have personally tried this but I guess I am beyond hope. But for borderline cases, you never know! Food_

Monday, December 26, 2005

SG Small Objects

Finally managed to collect the goods I've ordered from SG Small Objects. Cool stuff at rock bottom prices. Bought the following:

  • Nokia 6021 screen protector
  • Ultra slim USB Notebook HDD Case with pouch
  • USB to IDE adaptor (To hookup any internal IDE devices such as 3.5" HDDs, CD-Writers etc. through the USB port!)
These guys were great to open their office on a holiday for collection. Thanks! Technology_

Christmas Day

Attended Selene's baptism in the morning at a Church on Dover road.

Later on, lunch was at the usual Yan Palace restaurant. Prices seem to have increased but still affordable. The food is still good. General_

Christmas Eve Gathering 2005

Spent the second half of Christmas Eve 2005 at home for a gathering with friends. Lots of pictures taken and managed to find a site which allows for FREE & UNLIMITED (yes, you heard right!) photo sharing. Check out FOTKI. General_


Hey guys, I've uploaded the day's photos HERE.

Nature Trip

Started off on the Eve of Christmas 2005 with a McDonald's picnic breakfast at the Upper Seletar Reservoir view rest area along Mandai road. It is actually a fishing spot but I doubt its productive.


180 degree panorama from the fishing / rest area

After that, it was a short trip to the Nee Soon freshwater swamp for a quick look see (Thanks Jeff for the info!) Nice and quiet place. Manage to spot some fishes and got a couple of nice shots of the local dragonfly population. Here are some of the pics: Fish_



From top left (clockwise): Bridge across freshwater swamp; wifey scanning the water for fish; PUB warning sign; Wild Guppies!; red dragon; gold dragon.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Ricoh R3 Firmware Update


Installed the latest firmware update (v1.27). Supposed to have improvements in macro focusing and image stabilisation.

Performed some test shots using macro mode at night under indoor lighting conditions. The shots were taken at ISO64, 1/2s handheld with both arms resting on the table. Photography_

Friday, December 23, 2005

Fish Gallery #1

Welcome to my first mini fish exhibit. All photos have either been taken with the new Ricoh R3, or my trusty old Olympus C-750. I recommend using macro mode with flash as fish almost never stay still.

Tip: Pre-focus on a plant or the substrate and snap the fish when it passes by. Focusing directly on the fish itself is very difficult and are only possible for very slow swimmers. For less grainy photos, try to set as low an ISO setting as possible.


A variant of the the molly (Poecilia latipinna) with a nice patterned body and high "sail" fins.


Freshwater spotted green puffer (Tetraodon nigroviridis). This fish is a carnivore and eats only frozen or live food. It has sharp teeth for cracking open snails (one of their favourite foods). Try not to keep them with smaller or similar sized fish as this little fella tends to take chunks of fin off other fish when they are not looking!

My puffer has been found guilty (caught in the act) of fin chomping and is now in solitary confinement in a seperate mini-tank.


A male swordtail (Xiphophorus helleri) in bright orange colour.


A bunch of Tiger (Barbus tetrazona) and Schubert (Barbus 'schuberti') Barbs. They are extremely hyperactive. Make sure you do not keep them with long finned fishes. They will nip the fins and kill your fancy fish!

I got some of them a few weeks ago and promptly returned them to the fish shop!


A pair of Black Widow Tetras (Gymnocorymbus ternetzi). These fish grow very fast when well fed. They have grown almost a centimetre within a month after adding them to the tank.


One of a pair of glowlight tetras (Hemigrammus erythrozonus). Ideally should be kept in a larger shoal.


A pair of marbled angel fish (Pterophyllum scalare), black on white and white on black.


One of a pair of butterfly cichlids (Microgeophagus ramirezi) which originates from the Amazon. Beautiful colours, shy nature and tend to inhabit the middle to bottom zone.


Suckermouth Catfish (Hypostomus plecostomus) bought from a local fish farm for S$3. Loves algae tablets and may sometimes swim upside down "sucking" on the surface to feed on flakes! Fish_

Worm Cubes


Very nicely packed frozen gourmet blood worm cubes. Comes in a handy sealed pack of 8 x 4 cubes for only S$1! Available at the local fish shop (LFS to some people) near the Choa Chu Kang MRT Station / Bus Interchange.

Now before you start throwing these into your stir fry or using them as soup stock cubes, I must warn you that they are strictly NOT for human consumption (although some of us may think otherwise). They are simply served defrosted to my fish, and they love it! Fish_

A Breath of Fresh Air


My wife got this today for the living room. This is the third air freshener from Marks & Spencer that we've had and its highly recommended. Simple and classy design, nice fragrance and long lasting.

While you are at Marks & Spencer, you might want to pick up some of their savoury crackers. General_

Vegetarian Feast


A red and a spotted Platy (Xiphophorus maculatus) enjoying the last bits of an algae tablet. Fish_

Freshwater Planted Tank



My newly setup Freshwater tank is finally stable (I think). Fish population species is highly varied but I think I will reduce the species count later. Look out for more pictures of the inhabitants coming soon.

Also will be attempting to grow more moss and maybe start planting some glossostigma. Fish_

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Surprise!


Whoa! Surprise Christmas present from Wifey! BTW, I got her a pair of ASICS GEL running shoes ...

Its going to be a furry Christmas

Check out Santa Piggy!

Reminds me of Albi and Bino. Till we meet again, may you guys find peace over the Rainbow Bridge.

Lotus Notes to Outlook Migration

Anyone knows how to migrate mail messages from Lotus Notes (.NSF) format to Microsoft Outlook (.PST) format without paying an arm and a leg? Only way I know now is to use a trial copy of Microsoft Exchange to do Lotus Notes import ...

"Soft" Ride


The culprit. SoftRide USA Aluminium Frame with Mountain Bike setup. Shimano LX parts with Hutchinson Tires. Includes a pair of prehistoric fracture-causing hazardous cage type pedals (to be replaced).

Have since been banned from riding on "extreme" terrain. Bicycles_

The Fix


What they had to do to put Humpty Dumpty back together again. Bicycles_

Ouch!


Its almost 6 months since i fell off my bike and got this ... Bicycles_

Chix Curry



Home made Chicken Curry with Brahim's Curry Mix, circa 11 Dec 2005. Eaten with baguette and prata. Ivan, want some of this?! Food_

Hello World!

Hi, this is the first post. Hope this thing works ... General_