Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Trip to Singapore. Flight there and Day 1

Ever since we've moved back from Singapore (I lived there in jr high and high school) my parents have always wanted to take the family back. Well on March 7 we took the trip of a lifetime to Singapore!! I was so excited to finally be able to show my hubby where I grew up. Going there I knew it would change a lot, it had been 11 years since we were there last, but wow I did not expect EVERYTHING to be different!! After weeks of shopping for the trip and figuring out ways to entertain ourselves on the flight there and back (26 hours one way and 31 start to finish on the way back) we were set to go!!

Thats not to much luggage for a week vacation right?

Getting there was quite the event.....

When we were in the security line at the Minneapolis airport we noticed we only had boarding passes to Chicago and Tokyo, not all the way to Singapore. After checking our baggage tag to see where our bags were supposed to end we noticed they said Tokyo too....not good! We checked with the gate agent and found our luggage was short checked (aka no luggage in Singapore) AND to top that off we didn't have all our tickets and weren't scheduled to go all the way to Singapore. Luckily our gate agent was super helpful and got it all straightened out after a half hour or so. Thinking we were in the clear we took off for Chicago.
SO much leg room in economy plus
Ready for take off
 As we arrived in Chicago we hit HORRIBLE turbulence....I was not a happy camper. Once we finally landed (and believe me it seemed like forever in that wind) we found out my family was still stuck in Chicago and may not make the flight. I was so upset. Ed and I stalled as much as we could getting on the plane and still no family. As they closed one of the plane doors I thought there was no way the family was making it and was super bummed out. Then Jeff popped up the aisle...they made it! Mom and dad looked a little beat from sprinting through the airport but luckily for them they had PLENTY of time (and free alcohol) on the flight to calm them down :)

We all made it to Singapore safely....and with luggage! We exchanged our money:
Flying into Singapore

Everybody's luggage

Ed exchanging our luggage

Singapore money....so colorful! The coin is the $1 coin

The back of the Singapore dollars
We checked into our hotel, the Regent and then headed out to grab some food, the only thing open at 2 am was McDonalds....so McDonalds it was! After that we all crashed!

Day 1: We decided to spend the morning doing our own thing and the meet up later for lunch. Ed, my brother, and I walked Orchard Road ( a big shopping area). I was in awe how much it had changed since we lived there 11 years ago. Even the malls all got face lifts on the exterior! We walked a few miles and then decided to walk by our old condo, pretty much the only thing that was the same! After that we headed over to lunch with our family at an Asian food court. I got my first Chicken Rice of the trip, it was SO good

Mmm chicken rice
Old condo

Jas, Jeff, and me by the hotel pool. This was our 1st xmas card pic in Singapore....17 years ago

Condotel pool
After a trip down memory lane we decided to head to Sentosa, basically a tourist trap but a fun island off Singapore none the less. When we live there, there was not much there...a water park, a beach, mini golf. Now there is a Universal Studios, Zipline, huge developed beach area, lots of resort areas, basically it looks totally different and there are no attractions there now that were there when I lived there! We took cable cars over to the island from Mt Faber and then did the Butterfly Garden and walked to Siloso Beach. We also walked to the Merlion and watched some indoor skydiving...I was so close to doing the indoor sky diving but it was pretty expensive. After sweating at Sentosa all day we went to the hotel pool and swam and had a drink. Very refreshing! We were so tired that night that we didn't stray far for dinner, just went to the Dan Ryans Grill next to the Hotel because we were jet lagged and to tired to walk far! Here are a few pictures from Sentosa and the night:

In the cable car to Sentosa

This is the best pop, can't find it in the states :(

Siloso Beach

The family in the hotel before dinner @ Dan Ryans

The menu at dinner warned that the portions were "American" I'm not sure how to take that
I'd say the first day was off to a VERY successful start to the trip! Will cover the rest of the trip later :)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Mom and Dad visit plus updates to the basement!

Two weekends ago my parents came up to visit and see American Idiot the Musical with us. Mom got in Wednesday night and the plan was to go shopping and get pedicures on Thursday. Unfortunately I woke up with the flu and we were stuck inside all day while I whined on the couch. It was nice having someone take care of me though, thanks mom! :) Mav also loved having Grandma to play with him when his mom was incapable. By the end of the day I was pretty much chopped liver to him!

Friday I started feeling better and dad flew in that morning. He was supposed to get in Thursday night but since we were already off to a stellar start to the weekend with me being sick, the plane Gods decided to add to the fun and canceled his flights Thursday. Luckily he got in on the first flight in the morning. We lounged around the house and then met Ed downtown for lunch at the Burger Bar. I LOVE that place, anywhere you can get a side of tator tots with your burger is okay with me! After we shopped downtown for a bit and then swung by a few golf shops on the way home.

Friday night we hit up my new favorite restaurant in Minneapolis, Peninsula, it is southeast asian cuisine and so good/authentic. Mom and Dad were a little torn on ordering b/c there were too many good options. We settled on pineapple chicken, chicken satay, thai egg rolls, and beef chow fun. So yummy and now I'm even more ready for the big trip next week and all the amazing food that will come with it!

Saturday we did some light shopping and that night tried out Murrays steakhouse downtown, had never been there before. My mom remembered that her dad used to always say how good of a place it was and that he used to eat there a lot. Well Grandpa was right, the food was delicious! There was also a piano player while we were there. Here are a few pics from dinner:

After dinner it was time for American Idiot!!! It really was a great show. If you don't like Green Day you would not like this play. I think some of the people with season tickets to the theaters were not quite expecting this type of show. It was 90 minutes and no intermission. Lots of great songs. At the end, the entire cast sang "time of your life" and played guitars. Very cool ending. If you like Green Day I highly recommend!!

Mom and dad left Sunday :( It was fun having them here. Makes it much easier to say bye knowing we see them again soon for vacation! After they left Ed and I went to Brunch and then he took Mav to the park and I started building our new TV stand for the basement. It turned out SO good. It was time to replace the stand down there that was 6 years old. I also changed out some of the pillows on the couches by updating them with new yellow pillow case from Pottery Barn. Love how it looks down there now! Now the big question is what to redecorate or renovate next in the house....I'm thinking main floor bathroom :)