Ariel's Under The Sea Photoshoot {Review of Imagegarden Commercial Photography}

Posted by ~Summer~ on 23.4.14
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We had been wanting to do a themed photoshoot for Ariel ever since she turned one. Since we did one for Angel previously, it wouldn't seem fair if the little sister did not get her very own photo album for keepsake.

When we were brainstorming for ideas on the concept, the hubby said "Under the sea, of course!" Well, I was toying with princess and beach themes but the moment he said that, I knew we had made a decision instantly.

The photoshoot was done by Meng and Meivis of Imagegarden Commercial Photography who execute concept shoots for families and babies. Unlike other more direct family shoots, they make sure they work with you to conceptualise and develop a theme that you like and translate that theme into beautiful end products.

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The Little Mermaid

Wanna see how Ariel looked in the pictures? Here's sharing with you some of my personal favourites. Ta-dah!




Of course, I was ecstatic to know that my DIY mermaid costume for her 1st birthday party could be reused for this shoot. So I spent the night before stitching back the parts which had come loose from her constant walking and tugging.

Most of the props used in the shoot were ours since we already had these at home. However, I was very impressed by the effort Meng and Meivis put in for the turquoise backdrop which created an oceany and picturesque setting that was in line with our theme.

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The Beach Babe 

For the second outfit, we dressed up our little star in beachwear and let her have fun riding the waves. 












The good thing about Ariel is that she is generally a happy toddler and smiles at the smallest things, so it wasn't impossible to capture some good shots of her. Wait, I said it wasn't impossible, but was it easy? Are you kidding me? Anyone who has done a photoshoot with babies or toddlers will tell you how tough and challenging it can be. To get that one good shot, you might need to take a few dozens.

Other than those of her with her signature grin, I actually like those that caught her frowning, crying or whining. These are the moments that help to portray the real side of her, don't you think so? Meng has a flair for capturing these unique expressions at the right moments and I am just glad that I get to keep these precious shots for a lifetime.

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The Princess

Ok, I said this was a Under The Sea or arguably a Beach theme photo shoot. But, which mum can resist dressing up her precious as a girly girl in beautiful dresses and pretty accessories? *ahem* I can't.

Thanks to Meivis' spontaneity and skillfulness, she decided to take the curling tongs and gave Ariel a new hairdo within a short time. I think my girl totally rocked this hairstyle and somehow looked even more Japanese than she already is. Or so people tell me.




This part of the shoot was the most challenging one as we had to come up with all sorts of methods to make Ariel stay put at the dressing table and not walk out of the set to look for me. When we realised that she was starting to get cranky, Meng and Meivis were very kind to give us short breaks every now and then for the little one to rest and recharge.


These two pictures above were two of my favourites that day. I love the vintage looking furniture piece provided by Meng and Meivis and it was so exquisitely tiny that it fitted my girl perfectly. Or rather, it fitted both the girls.

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The sisters

Obviously, it wouldn't be cool to leave the big sister out of all the action so we dressed her up in a fairy dress that we borrowed from our friend at The Gingerbread Mum. After Meivis gave Angel some curls. I thought for the first time, she looked like a mature, young lady in a photoshoot. Yikes, baby-ness no more!





A pair of loving sisters, aren't they? You probably can't tell from these shots but we had to deal with an opinionated Angel who has her own way of doing things now that she is older and would choose to deviate from instructions. In fact, I even had to deal with tantrum after tantrum (that's the 24-hour role of a mum, right?) and Meivis was nice to offer little presents or sweets as rewards for the kids. What I appreciated most was the patience she and Meng provided in waiting for us to calm the kids down time and again just so we could capture that perfect shot.

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The family

Lastly, we also took the opportunity to take some family pictures. I must say it seemed almost impossible at the start because without the husband and I to distract the kids, dance Gangnam Style, sing nursery rhymes, play peekaboo or just basically act like clowns in front of them, it was an onerous task trying to get both of them to look at the camera and give their best smiles. Many thanks go to Meivis, who did an awesome job of capturing the attention of the girls and to Meng, who did a most professional job and gave us these priceless memories of a happy family.


If you have not done photoshoots with your little ones, what are you waiting for? I am all for capturing these precious moments because once they grow up, you might just never get this chance again.

If you could choose a theme for your next family photoshoot, what would it be?

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Imagegarden Photography
18 Sin Ming Lane, #08-03, Midview City Singapore 573960
Tel: (65) 6741 2183
Email: info@imagegardenphotography.com
Website: www.imagegardenphotography.com

For all A Happy Mum readers, Imagegarden Photography is now giving a 10% discount on commercial packages for family shoots which range from S$800-$1600. All soft copies will be provided. Simply quote "AHappyMum" when you make your booking. Valid till 31 May 2014.

Disclosure: This is a partially sponsored review. We paid a special discounted rate for the photoshoot and all the soft copies. All opinions are my own.

Creativity 521 #44 - Tulips that say "I Love You, Mama"

Posted by ~Summer~ on 21.4.14
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When it comes to flowers, I don't dread them but I don't love them either. Let me choose between a bouquet of 999 roses and a handmade card, I would prefer the latter any time. To me, flowers can be bought but a card from the heart, that is priceless.

That being said, there are occasions when even though I don't mind not receiving flowers, I actually feel like giving them. Of course, Mother's Day is one of them.

My mum is pretty much like me - simple, practical and appreciative. So, instead of giving her a big bouquet of flowers, I decided to give her just three stalks to symbolise "I love you" and since these flowers speak much of elegance, grace and pure love, I wanted to make DIY felt tulips

Materials I used:

1) Felt (in colours of your choice)
2) 3M Scotch Expressions Masking, Magic and Washi Tapes
3) Empty can, lid removed
4) Floral foam
5) Wooden chopsticks
6) White Blu-tack
7) Hot glue
8) Scissors

Firstly, I used the Scotch Expressions Masking Tape to wrap around the can. It holds securely to most surfaces and if you find it a little translucent, make it double-layered or add a white masking tape as a base.

For variety, I also pasted some Washi Tape near the top and bottom of the can. You can use small strips and stick them vertically or use a long strip to stick horizontally near the rim, then make slits at intervals and push the tape inwards. Make sure there are no sharp edges to be safe.

Next, I used a lime green Scotch Expressions Magic Tape to wrap diagonally around the chopsticks, forming the stalks. I really loved this colour!

To form the leaves, cut out the shapes from a piece of green felt. They do not have to be equal in size or perfect in shape. You can have one or two leaves for each flower, depending on your final arrangement.

For the flowers, cut out two flower shapes with four petals from each colour of felt that you have chosen. They do not have to be symmetrical and for every pair, one flower shape has to be slightly bigger than the other.

Now comes the fun part! It's time to poke, glue and stick! Using one end of the scissors, poke a small hole in the centre of every flower shape, making sure that the stalk can fit into it.

For each pair of flower shapes, insert the bigger shape, then the smaller one onto each stalk and put a small ball of white Blu-tack at the tip to act as a stopper and the flower bud.

Starting from the inner layer, which is the smaller flower shape, apply a litte hot glue at the side of each petal, overlap it a little with the next one and glue them together. Repeat until you finish one round and form a nice-looking flower.

Remember that the glue and tip of the glue gun can get pretty hot so if you have kids running around the house like I do, make sure they stay away. I love that hot glue is easy to use, dries almost instantly and is very lasting. All you need is just a little because it really goes a long way.

Do the same for the outer layer. To make the petals stay in place, you can put a little glue at the bottom of the inner layer and stick it down to the outer layer, and also a little on the stalk near the base of the flower. This is how a finished tulip should look like.

Now that you have gotten the hang of it, repeat the steps for the other flowers. To stick on the leaves, simply apply hot glue at one tip of a leave and secure it onto the stalk.

Put a piece of floral foam inside the can, poke the ends of the tulips through the foam, arrange the flowers and leaves as you wish.

Viola! Here is the final look! I must say these tulips were pretty simple to make but I loved how they turned out in the end. I am hoping my mum will love this gift as much as I do too, I think she will, wouldn't she?

What are you giving to your mum this coming Mother's Day? 

For more craft ideas and DIY tutorials, visit my gallery here.

Disclosure: We received the Scotch Expression Magic, Masking and Washi Tapes from 3M for experiment and loved using these bright and colourful adhesive tapes. All opinions, pictures and words are my own.

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To fellow bloggers who have a fun craft session, DIY tip or creative idea to share, come join in the party! Highlight and press Ctrl + C to copy my button above, include it in your post/sidebar and add your link below. I will be hosting Creativity 521 on the 5th and 21st of every month, do hop over for more inspiration. Remember: The sky's the limit when it comes to creativity!

A child today is a hope for tomorrow (Thoughts on the Jubilee Baby Gift)

Posted by ~Summer~ on 17.4.14
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Some of you might have seen me on Good Morning Singapore on Channel 8 two days ago. If I didn't show it much, I was pretty worn out after having to climb out of bed at 6am. The previous night had been an exceptionally rough one as Ariel was feeling feverish, couldn't sleep well and groped around for the boobs every half an hour.

It was the first time I did a live recording at Caldecott Broadcast Centre, and it was done with no teleprompter, no cue cards, no rehearsal and no idea of the questions I would be asked on set. All I knew was that the topic of the day was the Jubilee Baby Gift - something that I actually felt interested and motivated to talk about. But yes, I did it and you bet I achieved a sense of accomplishment thereafter. What's more, the interview was conducted in Mandarin and I think I made my mum proud to watch me that morning and see that I have not forgotten about my mother tongue.

For those of you who have not heard of it, the Jubilee Baby Gift is a small yet meaningful gift to welcome Singaporean babies born in 2015 in conjunction with the SG50 celebrations. It will contain a set of 5-10 items that the newborns can use in their early years and symbolises our wishes, hopes and aspirations for our future generation.

The National Population and Talent Division (NPTD), which is leading the Jubilee Baby Gift drive, has been gathering gift ideas online and at road shows and as of two days ago, which was the submission deadline, around 6,500 suggestions had been received.

Some were practical items, for instance baby stroller, diapers, bibs, clothes and so on. Some were commemorative, like gold coins, medals and ornaments. Some were more creative, like lifetime free admission to Gardens by the Bay. Others I heard of were more preposterous, for example lifelong free education, $20K cash gift etc.

I am not saying that the gift pack should not be special, it should be an unique offering but there must be a limit to how special it can be. Let's say if education is free for babies born in 2015 up till tertiary or even university level, how fair is it to be babies who are born on say 31 Dec, 2014 or 1 Jan, 2016, or those in the same generation? Fine, you might say that there has to be a line drawn somewhere and fairness is always a vague term. So, if the government gives away such a lucrative package next year and sets a precedent, what happens when our nation turns 60? 75? 100? What are Singaporeans going to ask for in order to give birth? Will they stage a strike and refuse to have babies altogether in that year if the package does not meet their expectations?

In the first place, having babies should never be a direct result of incentives, it should always be out of a love for kids and for having a family. I wrote a heartfelt post titled "Through the eyes of my child" on this issue previously and shared the reasons that compelled me to decide to be a SAHM. The post went viral for a period of time and garnered over 2,000 likes on Facebook, which made me realise that there are people who think like me but at the same time wonder, why then is our total fertility rate standing at merely 1.19?

If the government is to help to boost fertility, then they will have to think for the long term and continue to roll out more polices to encourage parenthood and marriage. That will, however, not be through the Jubilee Baby Gift which is more of a celebratory gift and a symbolism. It wouldn't be logical to hope for fertility rates to hit a peak in just the year 2015 and then drop to a new low in subsequent years when there are no more incentives and privileges.

I can talk about this all day long but I think that having a low fertility rate is an ingrained issue and reasons for young couples not wanting kids span from lifestyle habits, societal norms, career-driven mindsets and in many cases, a lack of a strong love for kids. In my humble opinion, having a kid doesn't mean you need to be filthy rich, have a car or a big house. Having four kids, yes, but not one, or maybe even two. I see people living in three-room HDBs with four kids while I see couples living in condos with none. To me, it's about the willingness to make lifestyle changes once you have a family and in order to have this willingness, you must first have that love for children I spoke about.

It was my honour to meet up with the hosts of Good Morning Singapore, Qiqi and Junwei, as well as Jim Lim, founder of REAL Academy and Dr Fong, a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist. Me? *cough* Just a plain, normal mum of two who occasionally likes to blog.

I particularly liked Jim's idea of a portable changing station for dads and Dr Fong's idea of having a publication with the names of the parents and Jubilee Babies. I am not sure if I shared anything useful from a mum's perspective but I am glad I managed to talk about a point I felt strongly about.

As we celebrate Singapore turning 50 and honour the hard work of our pioneers, we must at the same time remind ourselves that we have a responsibility to raise and educate our next generation so that our country can continue to grow and prosper. Our people are Singapore's biggest resources and we must not forget that our children will be the pillars of the nation in decades to come.

A child today will be a hope for tomorrow. Don't you agree?

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For those of you who expressed interest in watching the entire interview segment, here you go.



If you have to choose ONE item to go into the Jubilee Baby Gift, what will it be? 

Starting from 18 April 2014, the public will be able to vote for their favourite items and play a part in determining what the Jubilee Baby Gift will consist of. Visit www.nptd.gov.sg/jubilee for more details.

Comfort for the feet {Review and giveaway of SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks and Rileyroos shoes}

Posted by ~Summer~ on 16.4.14
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I will always remember the moments when my children took their first steps. To me, there are many precious developmental milestones in their growing up years but the first time they walked over to me with those shaky, wobbly steps, gave me a tight embrace and let me hear that sweet laughter, that is enough to melt any mummy's heart with joy.

Since those precious feet will be their pillars for life and support them along their life journey, it is only fair that as parents, we start taking care of them from young. For me, when it comes to buying socks and shoes for my girls, my utmost priority is not so much about design or looks - it is always about comfort.

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SmartKnitKIDS Socks

Have you ever worn socks and just got so annoyed by the wrinkles and bumps that just seemed to keep forming no matter how hard you tried to straighten them? If it feels uncomfortable for you, imagine how your lively, high-spirited child will feel running around in those.

For Angel, the moment she feels any discomfort when she is wearing her socks, she sits down and says "Mummy, there is one lump here" and I have to pull the socks tight so that the lumps go away and the seams are perfectly in place. More often than not, I end up wearing socks which are close-fitting and have elastic bands at the top so that they don't slip down her legs.

When we first heard of SmartKnitKIDS socks, they gave me a simple solution without having to let my girl wear overly tight socks or suffer from marks and irritation - Seamless socks.

These are some of the things I love about SmartKnitKIDS socks:

1) No more seams
As a patented product, these socks have not a single seam and provide much needed comfort and relief for those tiny feet.

2) No heel design
You know how socks usually come with the 'heels' and you have to fit them correctly so as to keep them in place? SmartKnitKIDS socks have a special 'no heel' design which means your kids can put the socks on easily and will not grow out of them so quickly.



3) No elastic bands
The elastic bands that come with most regular socks can often pinch, bind or irritate.

 SmartKnitKIDS socks come with non-binding Halo Top™ that ensure a snug fit and ease of wear without letting the socks slip down.

4) No more wrinkles
These socks are spun of of stretchy Corespun and Lycra yarns which result in a form-fitting design that 
fit comfortably on the little feet. Which means that you no longer need to worry about wrinkles, bunching, bumps and lumps.

SmartKnitKIDS socks are available in four colours; Pink, Purple, Navy and White and come in sizes to fit children from 0 up to 12 years of age (EUR 16-17 to EUR 40). For a more accurate measurement of your child's feet sizing, download their printable sizing guide.

When the weather gets cold or when the kids are sick, I like to keep those tiny feet as warm and as cosy as possible. Oh, and you know what is the best part in letting my girls wear these socks? Well, as a matter of fact, due to the unique no heel and seamless design, it actually means the two of them can share the same pair of socks! Ok, sounds stinky but I always wash their socks after every wear, yeah? For instance a pair of ankle socks for Angel can also act as crew socks for Ariel and a pair of crew socks for Angel can be knee-high socks for Ariel. Yippee!

Ultimately, I just need to know if they feel comfortable in the socks and judging from how Angel did not complain once but instead refused to take them off, I guess that sums it all up.

SmartKnitKIDS seamless socks is distributed in Singapore by Little Soles and Mount Alvernia Hospital Retail Pharmacy and has a retail selling price of SGD13.80 per pair (inclusive of GST). For more information, please visit www.littlesoles.com.sg

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RileyRoos Shoes

Since Ariel turned 14 months and had been taking steady, big, quick steps and even attempted to run after the big sister, I knew it was high time to get a good pair of rubber soled shoes for her. 

Doesn't this pair of Rileyroos shoes look cute yet stylish? Yes, I said my first criteria is comfort but wouldn't it be great if the shoes are comfortable and chic at the same time? I love how this pair of Rileyroos Carley - Blush shoes looked like ballet shoes from far, has criss-cross leather straps and a floral embellishment to complete the whole sweet, pink look.

What we loved about Rileyroos shoes:

1) Handmade using soft, high quality materials
The stylish accents are hand stitched onto the shoes where leather is used, it is child-safe, genuine leather with the use of non-toxic dyes.

2) Easy to put on and take off
The shoes have a very simple closure which makes it easy to wear and remove but stay fastened most of the time.


3) Flexibility 
Designed with a child's foot development in mind, these shoes are flexible and it is said that the sole of a Rileyroos shoe is so flexible that it can be curled into a ball in the palm of your hand.

4) Strong grip
The rubber soles provide a strong foothold and ensure that slipping does not take place.

5) Lightweight and lasting
With a toddler that weighs barely over 10kg, you wouldn't want to hold her back from exploring the world with a pair of heavy shoes. Rileyroos shoes are soft, light and have rubber inserts beneath the leather for better durability.


I totally mean it when I say that this is Ariel's favourite pair of shoes for now and whenever I say the magic words "Gai gai", she walks over to the shoe rack area, finds her Rileyroos, sits down and puts them on. Or tries to.


For me, I love that they match well with most of her oufits and it makes me feel good knowing that she is rocking these cute shoes and feeling comfortable enough to keep walking for one whole day.

Rileyroos shoes is distributed in Singapore by Little Soles and Mums and Babes at United Square and has a retail selling price of SGD63 per pair (inclusive of GST). For more information, please visit www.littlesoles.com.sg

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Now, how would you like to win a bundle giveaway for your little one's feet too?


We are now giving away a pair of Rileyroos shoes and a pair of SmartknitKIDS seamless socks, both of your choice, to a lucky reader. This giveaway is targeted for those with babies or toddlers below age of two only and are currently residing in Singapore. To take part, leave a comment in this blog post with your name, email address and age of your child.

Remember to click on the widget to indicate that you have commented and to increase your chances of winning, feel free to carry out the rest of the options. Best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure: We received complimentary pairs of SmartKnitKIDS seamless socks and a pair of Rileyroos shoes from Little Soles for the purpose of writing this review. All opinions are my own. 

Bento-making and healthy eating with AIA Vitality

Posted by ~Summer~ on 14.4.14
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It was only when I was staying in Europe that I started learning how to cook. Staying in a town where there were only two Asian restaurants and a plate of fried rice could easily cost S$20 meant that we did not have the luxury of eating out every day.

On hindsight, it was probably for the better because under those circumstances, I was left with no choice but to depend on homecooked food and make healthy eating a habit for my family. For the record, Angel has always been a great eater as a toddler. She would gulp down not one, but three, bowls of porridge for every meal with no problem at all. However, as she grew older, she started to be picky about what she ate, taking over an hour to finish her meal, and at times, even refusing to eat altogether.

It was a problem then and continues to be a problem now. We have tried the soft approach by teaching her the importance of eating a wholesome meal so as to stay healthy and avoid falling sick. We have also tried the hard approach by reprimanding and taking away her privileges. But nothing seemed to work!

So one day, when I was still staying in Sweden, I was surfing the internet, looking for ideas on how to improve my daughter’s eating habits, and chanced upon pictures of Japanese bentos. It suddenly inspired me to give it a try in the hope that Angel would be more excited about mealtimes if I could make food look more appealing and attractive. I placed my order for some bento-making tools online and upon its delivery, we were all set to explore! Angel was thrilled to see her ham, cheese and rice transforming into animal shapes and to my relief, finally started to show a keener interest in her food.

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AIA Vitality Bento Making Challenge

So when I was approached to be one of the five mummy bloggers to take part in the AIA Vitality Bento-Making Challenge, it certainly brought back memories of those experimental days but quite honestly, did freak me out a little at first as well! I don't make bentos every day and even when I do, they don't end up looking as exquisite or imaginative. Nonetheless, I knew it was the perfect opportunity to motivate myself to start making visually appealing and healthy bentos for the kids again.

The first thing on my agenda was to pay a visit to Cold Storage in search of healthy food items for my bento set.



Shopping with my AIA Vitality card, I found myself to be spoilt for choice. I was amazed that there are actually over 6,000 items in the HealthyFood™ list at Cold Storage, which are not that hard to spot in the stores. Most of them were clearly marked with a printed 'V' on the shelf price tags.

To enjoy cashbacks at Cold Storage, all you have to do as an AIA Vitality member is to complete the following: 

- AIA Vitality Health Review and get 5% cashback on HealthyFood™ purchases OR 
- AIA Vitality Health Check at Guardian and get 15% cashback on HealthyFood™ purchases OR 
- Both the AIA Vitality Health Review and AIA Vitality Health Check and get 15% cashback on HealthyFood™ purchases 

On your receipt, the letter “V” will also be reflected next to the HealthyFood™ items. For every $4 spent on HealthyFood™, you get to earn 10 AIA Vitality Points and enjoy the cashback. Remember to present your AIA Vitality card to the cashier when you make the purchase and with a swipe, the amount spent will be added into your account. 

Your total points might take up to two weeks to be reflected in your Vitality Points statement and after you receive your cashback in the form of vouchers by email, print them out and bring them along on your next visit to Cold Storage. 

When we got home, I decided to involve Angel in the process. We made funny shapes, laughed over uneven eyes, placed whiskers in the wrong places and while the end product was important, we made sure we had plenty of fun and laughter in the process as well.

Proof that preparing a bento or homecooked meal need not only be healthy, but fun as well!
Even though I had prepared some of the ingredients the night before, it was still a rushed affair on the morning of the event as I scampered around the kitchen trying to get all the things ready. With the hubby overseas and no one else at home, it didn't help that I had a pre-schooler who kept asking me questions and a toddler who hugged my feet as I did the frying. So, it was not a surprise that I was kept busy till the very last minute and was the only one who arrived on scene without makeup. Well, at least we made it in good time!

With fellow mummy bloggers. From left: Adora of The Gingerbread Mum, Dominique of Dominique's Desk, Regina of MummyMoo, me, Shermeen of Meeningfully

My goal that day was to complete the challenge and make a bento arrangement that my girls would love. With a stroke of luck, we surprisingly managed to emerge champion and win the first prize, much to Angel's delight. Yippee! A big thank you to my parents, in-laws, friends and readers who showed up to support, and kudos to all the fellow mummy bloggers for a job well done! I also wish to thank AIA Vitality for inspiring me to cultivate the habit of healthy eating for my family and reminding me that small lifestyle changes go a long way.
 
This was the end result!




A strong factor that has urged me to cultivate a habit of healthy eating is that I did a blood test recently and to my dismay, the results showed that I have borderline high cholesterol levels. The healthy range is between 140-200 and currently, my cholesterol level stands at 195. Therefore, in order to know more about my eating habits and find ways to improve my well-being, I did the Vitality Online Nutrition Assessment.

All it took was ten minutes for me to fill up a questionnaire about my dietary intake and once that was completed, I received a brief summary about my healthy indicators and lifestyle habits. For completing this assessment which can be taken every six months, I also get to earn 250 Vitality points.

The Vitality Online Nutrition Assessment results provide me with informative advice and a helpful list of food to avoid or to take in more. For example, I should avoid frequent intake of high-fat meat which contribute significant amounts of saturated fats, cholesterol and calories but eat more wholegrains which are high in fibre and can lower risks of chronic diseases.

I think bentos are a great start to a healthier way of eating for myself and my family. For the challenge, I made a korokke (Japanese croquette) bento and added rice, egg, vegetables and fruits. I think the cute factor of the animal moulds played a big part in appealing to my kids and garnering votes from the audience.

All our recipes will be turned into recipe cards for distribution at Cold Storage stores so stay tuned! But if you’re eager to try out what I’d prepared, here is a quick look at how it was done.

Korokke (Japanese croquette) Bento 
Serves 3-4

Ingredients:
2 potatoes, peeled and halved
200g minced pork
1 tsp corn starch
1 baby carrot, finely diced
1 Swiss brown mushroom, finely diced
½ large onion, finely diced
1 egg
2 tbsp oil
Salt and pepper to taste

For coating:
2 eggs
1½ cup Panko bread crumbs
½ cup flour
Oil for frying



1) Put the potatoes to boil in a large pot. Once they are soft enough for a skewer to pass through, drain the water and leave the potatoes as dry as possible. Turn off heat and mash the potatoes, leaving small chunks, and leave aside.

2) In a pan, heat up the oil and sauté the onion. Add carrot and mushroom and cook till they are soft.

3) Add corn starch to the minced meat and mix well. Next, add the meat to the pan and break it up into small bits. When the meat is nearly cooked, add salt and pepper to taste.

4) Combine the mashed potato and meat mixture in a large bowl, leaving any liquid behind. Add an egg and mix till well combined.

5) Start rolling into Korroke balls, using 1 tbsp of mixture for each ball. Coat the balls one by one in flour, followed by egg and then Panko. Once all the balls are coated, fry them in a pan on high heat. Since the inside is already cooked, you do not need to deep fry but ensure that the outside turns to a nice golden brown. If you prefer, you can coat the balls with oats or cornflakes instead of Panko.

 6) Arrange the rest of the bento ingredients, including the rice, pre-blanched vegetables, fresh fruits and garnishes as you desire. Serve with tonkatsu sauce, ketchup or sauce of your choice.



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CHOICE VOUCHERS GIVEAWAY

To help you get started on a healthier lifestyle, we are now giving away 5 x S$20 Choice vouchers which can be redeemed at any Cold Storage, Giant, Market Place, Guardian or 7-Eleven outlet. Just leave a comment in this blog post and answer the following question: How many AIA Vitality Points can you earn for completing the AIA Vitality Online Nutrition Assessment? (Tip: Visit https://www.aiavitality.com.sg/memberportal/points_and_status) and leave behind your name and email address. Click on the widget to indicate that you have commented and follow the rest of the options to increase your chances of winning.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Best of luck and let's make healthy eating a way of life!


Website: AIAVitality.com.sg 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/AIASingapore 

Disclosure: This is part of a series of sponsored conversations between AIA and A Happy Mum. All information is correct at the time of post and AIA reserves all rights to amend existing clauses at its sole discretion without prior notice. In no event shall A Happy Mum be held liable for disagreements arising between AIA and any party. Neither shall I be held responsible for any indirect, consequential, incidental, special or punitive damages or losses of any kind. For more details, please visit AIAvitality.com.sg.

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