MollyMia Aspire to Inspire before we Expire

Sunday, 10 April 2022

Yummy Cakes with Dig In Cakes [Sponsored]

Holding a surprise birthday party but missing the cake? Or are you just like me, who would very much prefer to have your cake delivered to your doorsteps? 
Taking the bus with an 8 inch whole cake in my hands, no thanks! 

Be glad to know that Dig In Cakes has got you covered!

Not only are their cakes reasonably priced and look absolutely beautiful, they're also freshly baked with the finest ingredients and even offer same day islandwide delivery, even an express one-hour delivery and midnight delivery! 

Last minute whole cake for a midnight birthday surprise, CHECKED! 

And after wrecking my brain over the huge selection of cakes they have, I finally decided to try out their 6" Blueberry Elderflower Cake

A unique combination of elderflower and blueberry, perfect for those who enjoy a light, floral flavour.

A decent amount of not-too-sweet blueberry jam layered in between fluffy vanilla sponge cake that's a tad dry, and then slathered in an unbelievably thick layer of cream, which I reckon to be Elderflower infused but so subtly that I didn't really taste any hint of it. 
As you can see from the cut section, I really wasn't exaggerating when I said that the cream layer is overly thick. While I guess it's serves to complement the slightly dryness of the sponge cake, it also created a lot of heaviness and just make the cake too cloying and oily for my own preference. 
I ended up needing to scrap away most of the cream and only eating the sponge cake and blueberry jam in the middle. 
Well, if you're a huge fan of eating sweeten cream on its own, I guess this would be your jam.  

Can't deny that the cake looks super pretty though!

I've previously tried their Yuzu Osmanthus Cake (I guess you can tell my cake preferences) and it was absolutely delicious! Unfortunately, I have to say that this Blueberry Elderflower, albeit looking a lot prettier, didn't meet my expectation. I guess the Yuzu Osmanthus has set the bar a little too high, even my parents and my grandma loved that cake. 

And with Mother's Day coming up next month, Dig In Cakes also have some pocket-friendly cake and flower bundle for y'all to surprise your Moms! 

For more information on their cakes and bundle section, check out their store website HERE

Till then,
Mia Foo

Friday, 14 January 2022

[Guest Post] Incorporating Learning Objectives Into Games

 Over so many years in teaching, I have tried and tested different teaching strategies. One of the strategies I found to be immensely useful is to incorporate learning objectives into teaching.
Whether it is Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, or Physics, harnessing the appeal of popular games helps students to appreciate, understand and remember the concepts better.
The game characters, personality, abilities, and context in which they are being employed in conjunction with the lesson materials can serve as excellent attention and memory anchors for students.

You see, the most common complaint raised by students is that they do not see the point of learning certain topics, especially since they are not using them immediately or in the future.
While educators can explain how they are being used in real-life applications, not all students can accept them. For example, we could explain how solving minima and maxima optimization questions in differentiation is commonly seen in supply chain management. Or you explain why there is a need for them to understand pressure calculations which are needed to know how to transport gallons of crude oil through a complex network of pipelines with different diameters and elevations.

While the attempt is commendable, students may still not see the immediate use for it.
“I understand where you are coming from, but I can’t appreciate it,” they would tell you.
It’s akin to telling drug users not to consume drugs now, since they do not appreciate the gravity of their actions until many years later.
A more effective way may be to weave in learning objectives and contextualize them into the games students play. Most students are very willing to help their favorite game characters who are in a bind, even if it involves solving a mathematical equation. To a gamer, it is super exciting to discover that only the role-playing character possesses the special skill sets necessary to solve that particular Physics question.

Maybe he can control gravity? 
Or he could levitate.
Students appreciate the tiny details and that Wow factor!

A few very simple examples can be seen here, I found having such scenarios immensely useful in capturing the students’ attention, and they are also able to retain their memory for a longer period, as well as to recall them easily. However, it is important to do research well to know what the game entails. Ideally, an educator should play the game himself or risk losing credibility.

Using Genshin Impact to Teach H2 Math AP GP Sequences and Series Games have penetrated every aspect of our society on top of education. We can see examples of games being employed in health care education, higher education, training in business, military training.

Militaries use them for training exercises, with the use of smartphones to apply their principles to track fitness. Many of the sectors have adopted games, simulations, or gamification as a means to achieve training or learning goals or simply to attain improvement. Remixing games is also a powerful activity where tools are creatively repurposed to meet the needs of users in specific contexts.

In this case, the intent was to help students understand a game and then to engage the students by thinking of ways to modify one or more mechanics to incorporate lesson objectives so that the game could find an enhanced purpose, a new audience, a new level of complexity, or a new educational outcome. 
This design experience offers many insights to students from the perspective of playing the original game and making a remixed game with added benefits

Yes, it may not be Singapore Math but it works for my students.
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter if the cat is black, or white.

Ingel Soong is an educator and has taught multi-disciplinary subjects such as Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, Finance, Economics, Statistics, and more. 
See his profile here.

Tuesday, 19 October 2021

CallApp: Always Know Who's Calling [Advertorial]

Are you still getting bothered by spam calls on a daily basis. Yes, those spam-call syndicates have got nothing on us (come on, why would our SPF or DBS call us and then speak to us in Mandarin by default?) but I seriously do not appreciate even a precious second of my time lost picking up these annoying scam calls. 

Let's not even talk about how disrupting these scam calls are, especially if you're expecting an important (work) call from the new guy whose number is not in your contact list yet. 

So, do I answer this call from this unknown number or not? 

Wouldn't it be nice if we can stop these scam calls from coming in, once and for all? 

But now with CallApp, now you can!

Featured on Google Play, CallApp is a FREE android app that is trusted by more than 100 million users in over 200 countries. It has not only been chosen by Google as one of the top android apps, but also won several awards and is highly recommended by many top-rated tech magazines worldwide.

CallApp's Caller ID function can instantly identify any number that is calling us, even if its not on our contact list. Coupling this with their Call Blocker feature, we can now easily identify phonecalls from spammers and telemarketers, and block all these unwanted numbers to give us a piece of mind, once and for all. 
It also has a feature that automatically blocks numbers that's previously identified by other users as spam. Convenient, right?

Other than these two very important features, CallApp also has call recorder and video ringtone functions, with the latter allowing us to set any video we fancy as a "ringtone" to any/specific contact. 

But my favourite feature of the application has to be this. 

Don't you find it troublesome that you have to specially save a number as a new contact just so you can send over a WhatsApp message? 
Now with CallApp, you don't need to do that anymore! CallApp allows us to WhatsApp to non-contacts, saving us the hassle of needing to add various numbers as "XXX seller" just so to send out that screenshot for our proof of payment. 

These are just a few of the many awesome features CallApp provides, which also includes phone number search, car mode, and even incognito mode! 

As mentioned, the basic version of CallApp is free to download for all android phones, but premium packages can also be purchased on a monthly or lifetime basis from as low as just USD $1 per month for an ad0free experience, unlimited call recordings and access to CallApp plus (which allows you to identify messages from unsaved contacts), unlocks all your profile views & data insights, store items for free and even provides you with premium support and a faster response rate.

What are you waiting for, go download CallApp HERE and free yourselves from those pesky phonecalls! 

Till then,
Mia Foo

Monday, 18 October 2021

Thermage FLX at IDS Clinic [Sponsored]


After getting really good results from the IDS skincare line and Pico-Laser treatment during my #IDSTransformMe journey with IDS Skincare, I'm definitely more than happy to be able to return to IDS again to try out the Thermage FLX treatment!

Currently using their 4th generation machine at IDS, Thermage FLX is the global leader in non-invasive skin tightening technology, with 15 years of experience in non-invasive skin tightening, and more than 2 millions treatments performed worldwide! It is also the only FDS-approved non-invasive eye skin tightening treatment, which helps to smooth and tighten skin, decrease wrinkles and hooding in the eye area, for younger-looking, lifted eyes. 

If you're not familiar with Thermage FLX, it utilises a patented radiofrequency to deliver heat safely and uniformly into our deep skin layers to renew our collagen. The gentle heating tightens our existing collagen and stimulates the production of new collagen, resulting in an immediate skin tightening and well-defined 3D skin contour. Results are not meant to be immediate, but our skin will slowly improve after the treatment for up to 6 months, with the effects lasting up to 12 months! Thermage FLX treatment doesn't only work on our faces, but can also be done on our neck, knees and even buttocks! 

So after a quick consultation with Dr. Ben, I was brought to the treatment room to have my face cleansed and to apply the numbing cream. Unlike the previous Pico-Laser treament, which required a waiting time of 20 minutes for the numbing cream to take effects; the numbing cream was left on for an hour to ensure minimal discomfort during the treatment. 

After cleaning the numbing cream off my face, Dr Ben first marked out the area of my face that he wanted to focus on (mainly my smile lines, my cheeks and my jaw lines) then prepped my skin with alcohol wipes and we're good to go! The entire treatment took about 30 to 45 minutes to complete all 600 shots on my face (and jaw/neck).

During the first couple of shots, there was absolutely no feeling of discomfort, just the vibration of the machine. But towards the end of the 300 shots (on each side of my face), the pain slowly escalated to a rather sharp stinging pain, but still bearable though. Overall, the pain factor would be about 5/10. Definitely a negligible price to pay for the sake of beauty. HAH! 

Here is now I look now. I see a slight lifting effect (my face to a tad smaller?) at the lower cheeks and jaw line, if you compare with how I look before, but do note that it would take at least a month for obvious improvement in the skin to show.

What I like most about Thermage FLX is that there is absolutely NO DOWNTIME for this treatment, the slight prickly sensation on my face after the numbing cream effects has wore off aside, there was no redness or any sort of skin peeling. Our skin will also not be exceptionally sensitive to the sun or any kind of active ingredients, so we can just go back to our usual routines after the treatment, and just wait for the skin improvement to show naturally.
Awesome, right?

To know more about Thermage FLX at IDS, check out their website HERE

Saturday, 9 October 2021

The Durian Bakery [Sponsored]

Noticing that Singapore lacked a bakery that specialises in baking delicious, rich durian goods, The Durian Bakery was born in 2020, guided by a passion for durian and a passion for greatness. And their response so far? 
Rated as one of the 17 best durian cakes in Singapore by, The Durian Bakery is definitely one of the bakeries you ought to check out if you're an avid fan of durian baked goods.

From Durian Black Forest Cakes, to Durian-Oreo Ice Cream Cakes, all of The Durian Bakery innovations are coupled with their very own signature puree, SilkyGold™, which will introduce you to a world of new and rich durian flavours. 

And it's a good thing that they sent over these bundles of goodies during my birthday, so the calories shouldn't count, right? 

Black Forest Cake made from the freshest finest black cherries and dark chocolate, infused with Mao Shan Wang puree. Made with our signature MSW SilkyGold™ Durian Puree – the creamiest, most delicious durian filling you’ve ever tasted, made of 100% Grade A MSW, blended through a special process to make it extra creamy, and just as tasty as the Durian itself!

Made with moist cherry chocolate chiffon sponge cake, layered with black cherry jam and 100% pure MSW puree, then frosted with dark chocolate charcoal butter cream and topped with Holland black cherries that are dusted with edible 24k gold dust. 
Talk about a luxurious birthday cake! 
While the chocolate base flavour of the cake complements the durian flavour pretty well, the tangy black cherry jam helps to further boost the durian taste of the MSW puree. A definite must try if you're not just a fan of durian and chocolate, but also appreciate tangy fruits. 

Other than the whole cake, there was also a Signature Pastries Taster Bundle ($51.90) that comes with the following yummies.

Savory dark chocolate mousse with fresh Musang king durian pureed and whipped into a thick creamy texture. With every mouth, you could taste the natural bitter-sweetness of our signature SilkyGold™ Durian Puree – the creamiest, most delicious durian filling you’ve ever tasted – topped with the sinfully rich dark chocolate.

With a hazelnut palette feuilletine base, filled with creamy MSW mousse and a 100% molten MSW core (picture taken while it was pretty chilled, hence not very molten) and covered with 100% dark chocolate and dusted with 24k gold dust, this is definitely the durian dessert you'd serve to impress. 

While it has been established that durian and chocolate makes a good taste-team, the addition of the feuilletine base added a nice crunch to the overall soft and creamy texture of the mousse cake, hence boosting up the overall mouthfeel of the dessert.

Light airy choux puff pastry filled with a luscious and decadent durian filling thats made using our D24!

Extremely light, soft and airy choux puff pastry that is filled to the brim with creamy D24 durian cream; what's not to love about this? 

“Poink-poink!” Our signature mochi with a soft core filled with purely just D24 Durians!

And last, but not least, everybody say MOCHI-MOCHI~~
These cute little chewy bite-sized balls of mochi are filled generously with a soft centre of D24 durian, a definitely must try for all you mochi lovers! 

For more durian baked goods, check out The Durian Bakery HERE

Till then,
Mia Foo

Sunday, 22 August 2021

Media Tasting: A La Carte Buffet Dinner at Ellenborough Market Cafe (Swissotel Merchant Court)

Alright, this is quite a belated update as I've visited the restaurant before we backslid into HA. Well, if you've been following me on IG you should know, and hopefully has treated yourself to a takeout feast with the 15% discount promotion code too? 

Anyway, here's a much overdue review of my ala carte buffet dinner at Ellenborough Market Cafe, located at Swissotel Merchant Court. 

A small dampening aspect of the situation now, due to covid measures, is that the buffet line is no longer open. So the excitement of browsing through the buffet line to find out 'what's up for grabs' and also to decide for ourselves on how much or how little of each food to take, is wholly removed from the dining experience. Instead, you'll be given a few sheets of the ala carte order chit and be overwhelmed by row and rows of dish names. 

But that teeny weeny disappointment was quickly dissolved by the wow factor of the seafood bucket that was served to our table. It was literally a bucket, filled with Boston lobster, rock lobster, clam, whelk, prawns, black mussels, king grab, sausages, root vegetables and mushrooms. 
Definitely a treat for seafood lovers, YUMS! 

The dishes available for the ala carte dinner buffet are of a Peranakan fusion theme, so you can expect lovely dishes like laksa, nonya, rojak, kueh pie tee, babi pongteh, nasi lemak rice (dyed a beautiful blue with the butterfly pea flower) and ngoh hiang et cetera. 
And at the same time, you can also find more western dishes like sirloin steak, pasta, roasted potatoes and mushroom soup, and chinese dishes like kung bao lotus root and wok-fried asian greens on the menu to help satiate your hunger. 

While the HB was totally in love with the Rock Lobster in Singapore Chili Crab Sauce (because lobster, DUH!), the dish that left the most lasting impression on me for the night was the pasta with pork ragout and sous vide egg. The super IG-worthy #eggporn moment of breaking the yolk of the sous vide egg aside, the pork ragout was really flavourful, and together with the sous vide egg, gave the paste a lovely creamy, savoury taste. 

Being a ant-person (someone with an extreme sweet-tooth), the dessert menu of 14 dishes wasn't all that impressive. A huge part of it was also because I'm not much of a fan of local/nonya desserts (nonya kueh, chendol, bubur cha cha, durian), and so my choices of dessert was immediately reduced by half. 
Anyway, the HB quite enjoyed the durian fritter, and also felt that it was better than the durian penyet. Well, I guess you just can't go wrong with dipping food in batter and deep-frying them, yes? 

And out of all the cakes and patisserie that I've tried (black forest trifle, new york cheesecake, raspberry lychee mousse, honey pecan walnut tart), I have the say that the raspberry lychee mousse stood out the most. Love the tanginess of the raspberry, coupled with the sweetness of the lychee that is enveloped in the fluffy near-nothingness of the airy mousse. The NY cheesecake was pretty good as well, rich and creamy, but both the HB and I did not understand why they had to add the icing pearl sprinkles on top. It was so hard crunchy that it nearly chipped my filling. =,="

Do check out the HB's full video review of our dinner feast for the night.

For more information on Ellenborough Market Cafe current opening hours and their dining offers, visit their website HERE

Till then,
Mia Foo

Sunday, 1 August 2021

Basically Jo: Centella Cica Skincare for Acne & Sensitive Skin [Sponsored]

BasicallyJo was founded by Jolene, who suffers from acne and contact dermatitis (a form of eczema). Her persistent research and experiment with products led to many of her friends in the same situation coming to her for advice on skincare products and she was then inspired to launch BasicallyJo to share her knowledge on natural beauty remedies and products, and help those in the same shoes to regain their skin confidence. 

Promising to be a vegan, clean, cruelty-free and sustainable skincare line, BasicallyJo now carries two brands of Korean skincare - Pureforet Centella Cica and T'else Kombucha Teatox. Both brands contains natural ingredients and are free from harmful chemicals, which allows the skin to 'breathe freely' and hence reduce the possibility of potential acne breakouts and other skin allergy outbreaks. 

Do you know that exposure to blue light from screens causes our skin to age rapidly, leading to development of wrinkles and fine lines? In order to repair our skin barrier and combat the premature skin aging, we require ultra-intense hydration and collagen. However, rich moisturisers are typically not very well tolerated by those with sensitive (easily clogged up) skin (like yours truly), and many of us tend to lose out on the benefit of having a well hydrated skin. 

Pureforet Centella Cica Multi Cream is specially formulated after 12 years of research with the Korean Skin Centre for sensitive skin. With a triple combination of shea butter, aroma oil blends and centella asiatica, this multi cream hydrates the deeper layers of the skin, while antioxidants from centella cica stimulates collagen production within the skin, hence minimising the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. This simply means that this cream is not only good for acne-prone or eczema skins, but also comes with anti-aging benefits! Talk about win-win! 

Coming in a handy-dandy 50ml tub, a little goes a long way when using this multi cream. With a slightly gel-like creamy consistency, this multi cream spreads easily and gets absorbed into the skin quickly, leaving no feeling of oiliness behind. Using this cream as part of my night routine has allowed me to wake up to a soft and supple skin, with no oily sheen on my face. The quick absorption of this cream also makes it a good day cream, as I need not wait too long for the cream to "set" before layering on my sunscreen and/or makeup.

Being a rich moisturiser (shea butter is no joke for oily-skin ladies like me, really!), I do get a slight sticky feeling on my skin should I dab on a little too much of the cream. But after nearly two weeks of using the cream, I'm glad to say that the richness of this multi cream is definitely all good and no harm to my extremely oily and yet dehydrated skin. 

And do you know that BasicallyJo is actively looking for testers for their products? Check out their FAQ to find out how you can apply to be their product testers! 

For more information on BasicallyJo and their range of skincare products, visit their website or IG

Till then,
Mia Foo

Saturday, 19 June 2021

Jolly Up Your Day with Up and Away Balloons [sponsored]

With the current pandemic situation, I think a good advice to all will definitely be, 
to focus on the good. 
So glad to receive a bundle of joy (literally!) from Up and Away Balloons the other day, when I was feeling at my absolute worst from a truckload of stress at work. 

A full service balloon delivery service, Up & Away offers customizable arrangements for any special event or occasion. We strive to offer the best balloon products and quality of service on the market. Let up & Away be the string to your balloon so you can sit back and enjoy your celebration with a peace of mind knowing that everything is taken care of, from the designing and creation of your customised messages, to the delivery of the balloons at your doorstep.

Get carried up & away because the sky’s the limit when it comes to our customised balloons! Our team can create and deliver any type of balloon decor and will cater to your every request to the best of our ability. Add a personal touch and get a customised balloon for anyone in your life with our extensive selection of unique and magnificent balloons. 
-credits to up and away-

I'm not joking or exaggerating when I say you'll literally be swept "up & away" by the plethora of balloon types and designs available for you to choose from. Regardless of what occasion, you'll definitely find THE balloon(s) you need, be it for a gift, part of the gift, or for an elaborated decor setup. Up and Away is no doubt your best choice for customised balloon Singapore.

I obviously need a pick-me-up, so what's better than a lovely box of chocolates along with some pretty balloons?

Pretty helium balloons (with a customised message) with a box of lovely chocolates (snickers, kit kat, tim tam, godiva and cadbury!), how can this not bring a smile onto anybody's face? 

I'll highly recommend this chocolate hamper if you're thinking of sending some love to your loved ones to brighten up their day with some sweet treats (along with some words of encouragement on some pretty balloons). So do check out Up and Away Balloons HERE!

Till then,
Mia Foo