It’s Monday and I’m listening to Patrick Stewart read a plastic surgery haiku


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date



Over the past week I’ve been trying to figure out if I want to get out of a url and get my own. I’ve changed the title of the blog, but not the URL so far, as I’ve been wondering, should I just get myself a “.com” address instead! When I first started this blog, ages ago, I had used ‘olduvai’ as a name to hide behind but I don’t want that anymore. If you are on Instagram, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve changed my username there to which I think reflects better on how I feel about reading and Instagramming (and blogging) these days. So I have to ask, those of you who have made the switch from a free host (i.e. blogspot or wordpress) to your own website, how was that transition? Any tips to give someone who is pretty much clueless about websites? What web hosting service do you use? And then the thing is, I keep wondering, do I really want to pay for something that is a hobby and will never make me any money?  (Also, see Andi’s piece about book blogging and money-making).

Then I also wonder, does my very inconsistent blogging require an actual website? I keep going back and forth on all this! 

Anyway, let’s see what I did last week….

Oh, the husband was away in Orange County, just for one night. His return flight was delayed (of course) so he ended up getting back around 9pm. And the five-year-old was really upset by that and he kept crying and crying, even after Daddy got home. Poor thing.

I went down to the city (SF that is) to pick up my passport from the Singapore consulate. I got to wander around the Ferry Building a bit, bought some books from Book Passage, sat outside in the sun to watch the boats come in, the traffic on the Bay Bridge, and have a really expensive (but SO GOOD) mocha. Then I headed back on the Bart, normally a 45-minute ride, and I had planned it so that the Husband could pick me up from the station and then get the kids from preschool which was a few minutes’ drive away. Of course, the train I was on went out of service, there was a medical emergency at some station, then there was police activity at another! The 45-minute ride ended up being 1 hour 15 minutes long. I’m just glad I don’t have to do this everyday although the Husband has to.


Some books I bought recently. One from Book Passage and the rest from Book Outlet. 

Also made asparagus risotto with pan-seared scallops for Friday dinner. The Husband said, hmm something is different from the last risotto. Yup I didn’t do bacon this time. 

Also made chwee kueh, a popular breakfast item at hawker centres in Singapore. The white part is a steamed cake made of rice flour. The topping is a sweet-savoury preserved radish and dried shrimp. Easier to make than I expected!




 The Song Poet – Kao Kalia Yang

I won this from a Library Thing giveaway, and it is so moving and beautiful. Yang and her family are Hmong. She tells the story of her father, Bee Yang, who escaped Laos and brought his family to the US. In the Hmong tradition, the song poet recounts the story of their people, their history and tragedies, folk tales and more.


The Summer Guest – Alison Anderson

This is for an upcoming book tour. But I must say, it is SO GOOD.








Yes Please! – Amy Poehler

Another great audiobook! This one has not just Poehler but also Kathleen Turner, Seth Myers, and best of all, Patrick Stewart reads a plastic surgery haiku (it is seriously worth listening to just for that alone but if you just want to listen to Patrick Stewart, you can go ahead and do that right at this link. Seriously, go). I have to admit I have never seen Parks and Rec, and have only seen a few episodes of SNL (I grew up in Singapore, late night TV there didn’t really include things like SNL).



Chocolate swiss roll




It promises to be a cooler week so maybe some oxtail stew, some oven-roasted chicken drumsticks, some noodles for sure as we always resort to noodles when there’s nothing else on hand.


Added to the TBR (at least for the kids) is A Morning with Grandpa by Sylvia Liu, illustrated by Christina Forshay (via BookDragon)

The nominees of the Shirley Jackson awards


Last week:

I read:


Who Slashed Claire’s Throat? – Maryse Conde (my thoughts)
As you wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of the Princess Bride – Cary Elwes
Mr Splitfoot – Samantha Hunt

I posted:

TLC Book Tours: The Bridge Ladies by Betsy Lerner

Recent diverse reads:

Books I picked up on a whim



  1. Ooh your dinner always looks so amazing! I had risotto too today, but with asparagus. It’s asparagus everything here atm 🙂 Definitely need to read the Condé! Also The Song Poet sounds really great! Heh I haven’t yet found a reason to self-host cause I don’t have any money to spend on this when I can blog for free. But I think the situation is different if there’s a regular income and I can definitely see the upside in terms of what you can do with the layout etc! Sometime the theme options on get on my nerves. Love your new name btw 🙂


  2. Your food always looks so so good.

    I am self-hosting but getting ready to go back to just using (and keeping my url). I don’t blog enough to justify the expense. I’ve had a really good experience with Nosegraze, though, and would recommend her services. I have just learned self-hosting isn’t for me.

    Also, I’m planning to change my blog subheading so it’s more reflective of the writing I want to do, so I guess it’s just the time for that sort of self-reflection re: blogging, huh?


    1. Oh that is interesting! Yeah, Trish of Love, Laughter and Insanity, recommends Nosegraze too, but I’ve looked at her plans and I’m not sure that I want to pay that much at the moment! I was thinking of signing up with Bluehost and trying to export my blog there… haha… not sure if that will work!


  3. that chwee kueh looks amazing!!

    I noticed the Okorafor in your books photo, I just bought her Kabu-Kabu, and her novella Binti is so beautiful and perfect.

    Patrick Stewart reading anything? sign me up! I’m a huge fan of Parks and Rec, so anything Amy Poehler, I’m interested in.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh yes, Binti is just a wonderful read! Okorafor is just such an amazing writer. Have you read Zahrah the Windseeker? One of my favourites!


  4. Risotto! Look at you! You’re the fanciest! I have never made a risotto, and I do not believe I would be capable of making one even if I wanted.

    As for self-hosting, I’ll say that while I don’t exactly regret making the change to my own .com domain, and I’m happy I changed the blog name, it wouldn’t have been much different to change juts the domain, rather than switching to a dot-com. And it would have saved me some money every year — not a ton, but — you know? Dollars are dollars.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Before I first made risotto I always thought oh, it’s so difficult and I would mess it up. But no seriously it is not difficult! You just have to spend some time on it – as in no distracted cooking! I’ve also heard of baked risotto. Maybe that would be good for distracted cooking.

      True that, about $$$. I thought about affiliate links and whatnot but let’s face it, I already don’t have that much time to sit and blog, what chance will I have of adding affiliate links? Ok so I am also lazy.


  5. I was going to suggest Jenny’s idea, too! Before I switched from Blogger to self-hosted WP, I just bought a domain name for like $5 a year and added it to my Blogger blog. It was a good way to get a foothold on that name without taking a huge leap right away.

    Excited to see you’re reading The Song Poet! It was one of the books featured at Speed Dating at BEA and sounded great.


    1. Yeah I have been looking at mapping domains via WordPress. That may be a good option for me right now! 🙂

      The Song Poet is SO GOOD!!! Everyone should read it!

      Thanks Shannon! I’ve always admired your blog!


  6. The rice flour cakes in the chwee kueh look like idlis (South Indian rice cakes). That gave me some warm fuzzies, dunno why. Patrick Stewart reading a plastic surgery haiku is EVERYTHING.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh now you have me thinking of idlis. I haven’t had those in ages. There seem to be more North Indian and Pakistani-style restaurants here than South Indian!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I am a fan of your GIANT pictures.

    That book haul is seriously drool worthy! Two Okorafor novels?? 😀
    Book Passage looks like a might impressive book store with a great selection.
    So glad I found your blog! I look forward to reading more of your posts every week.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well I am so glad I found yours too!
      Haha giant pictures. I think that’s because I didn’t set my dimensions properly when I uploaded them from my phone….!!


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