Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Birthday Lunch & a Stroll Along Love Lane

I'd planned in my mind what I thought would be the perfect birthday ever for Hubs this year.

Plan: Wake up early. Decorate the place with Happy Birthday banners that I'd make the night before. Babysit Bubs so Hubs get to sleep in longer. Pay the delivery guy that will send the birthday cake to our place.Wait for Hubs to wake up so we can surprise him with perfect decorations + cake.

The night before, we went out for a pre-birthday dinner, got back late, Bubs went to bed late so the handmade birthday decorations were scrapped.

It's ok, I reasoned, I can still wake up early to babysit Bubs, get the cake from the delivery guy and still surprise Hubs.

Reality: I woke up to Hubs chasing Bubs around the place trying to get his diaper changed (Bub's diaper, Hubs is toilet trained already). The phone rings and Hubs asked if I ordered a "surprise birthday cake". Ooops. I ran to my wallet and realised I didn't exactly had enough cash for the cake either. Begged Hubs to go down with Bubs, pay for the cake first and then bring the cake back.

"You want me to pay and collect my own birthday cake?" Hubs looked incredulously at me.

'Errrr ... yes, please? By the way, happy birthday!"

Bubs was soooo eager to sing the birthday song though his version went "eh-pee burf to youuu" and I was equally eager about having cake for breakfast.

We went to Steak and Frites again for lunch. This time around, I asked for extra salad instead of the fries and a glass of house wine to go with the steak which was a fantastic combination. The steak was done to perfection and I cannot stop raving about how tender and juicy it was. Bubs, on the other hand, looked longingly at the fries and the glass of vino.

Since it was a nice day, blue skies and fluffy clouds, we decided to head back to Lovelocks for more coconut ice cream. We spotted lots of people taking photos of these cool metal rod artwork describing Penang road names. I'm nothing if not a joiner ;)

I found this little souvenir shop - 41 Living Story at Love Lane selling kitschy and one of a kind stuff. The fabric bunnies in white and blue were my favourites but too bad Bubs isn't that interested in stuffed toys.

Not too sure if these pair of slippers were for sale but then I'd probably need the matching door as well to make our place look this old school!

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream ;) The deliciously creamy dessert was such a welcome treat on a hot, sunny day.

Happy Birthday, Hubs, I promise I'll pay you back for the cake!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Sweet Partings

It's been a week of partings. 

EL, my uni bestie, the girl that taught me how to walk in high heels, consoled me after each broken heart, sat next to me on a 9 hour long bus ride and kept laughing as we saw cow after cow, is moving back to Sydney with her husband and Little H :( I'm happy for their new start but will miss her terribly.

We dropped by to say good bye. Can't believe EL and I graduated at the same time, got married at the same time and had our kids within 6 months of each other.

Lil H enjoying her chauffeur driven ride ;)

At the workplace, it was L's last day at work and coincidentally, we were both wearing blue!

Sigh ......

It was the perfect excuse to bake some cookies just to cheer myself up ... and of course Bubs loved every single bit of cookie baking from helping me stir the batter to rushing me to bake them "faster, mummy" and then scoffing them down.

Molasses cookies are practically health food aren't they? I mean look at molasses, they're practically a superfood and spices are full of antioxidants.

I made a couple of variations: substituting ground cloves and ground ginger because each McCormick bottle would cost at least RM9 each (!) and I was more than happy to find this Mix Spice at Tesco for only RM5, yayyyyy! Also substituted margarine with butter (the holy grail of baked goods, mmm ...) and white sugar with brown sugar for a fudgier taste.

I usually get lazy when following recipes and omit steps on whims but pretty glad I followed this one: chill the dough in the fridge for at least an hour, roll them into balls and dip them in sugar. They resembled sugar crusted lumps of poo at this stage and I was wondering if they were even going to be edible :(

Voila! After 8 minutes in the oven, this was what greeted us - chewy, freshly baked molasses cookies. Bubs took 1 bite and gazed at me with his mummy-you-are-the-best look on his face. Totally worth the effort, I tell you ;)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Steak Frites at 23 Love Lane

Steak lovers, look no further for your fix of a nicely done steak. Newly opened Steak Frites is part of the boutique hotel 23 Love Lane and specialises in, well, steaks and fries.

The restaurant is elegantly restored with a lot of old fashioned wooden furniture, marble topped tables and an authentic bar at the back. Orchids in heavy glass bottles add a cheery vibe to the place. The staff are extremely friendly and welcoming.

Steak Frites offers nothing but Australian grass fed tenderloin steak (RM49 for 150gm and RM60 for 200gm), bread, a side serving of salad and fries. The salad and fries are nice, nothing extraordinary but the steak, oh my ... that juicy, beautifully grilled steak. Forget your black pepper sauce and other what nots, this steak is perfect with two simple medallions of Cafe de Paris Butter.

We peeked around 23 Love Lane, the boutique hotel housed in a heritage mansion next door and it looked amazing.

Steak Frites serves steaks past 5pm on weekdays and 12 noon on weekends. A definite must go to place for all steak lovers.

Steak Frites
23 Love Lane, 10200 Penang
Tel: 04 2621323

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Weekend in Peek-tures

Did everyone had a great weekend?

I met up with Glam Girl who is 6 months pregnant now, soooo excited for her *squeals* She is so athletic and toned, you can't even tell that she's pregnant!

We had this crispy-licious pork knuckle that came with potatoes and sauerkraut at Healy Macs, Straits Quay. It was so good that the couple at the table next to us were eying the pork knuckle and asked the waiter to cancel their own order to change to the pork knuckle!

Dropped by Kar Mun's new education centre for her grand opening. The refreshment bar was so colourful and cutesy!

Bubs and I helped Hubs put together an Ikea bookshelf, i.e. Bubs attempted to count all the little screws and thingamajigs and I documented it on camera.

We gatecrashed visited Mig's new condo. He brought out some soft toys for Bubs to play with but I don't think he approved of how we were playing with them instead ;)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Pavilion and Publika at KL

Mall hopping is a must do in KL so what better way to embrace it but to just join the crowd ;)

We were tickled pink to find that Pavilion at KL has a whole section dedicated to Japanese goodies at Tokyo Street. There was a distinct vibe with colourful streamers and funky characters walking about.

Come dinner time, Fairy Godma was kind enough to drive us to Publika which was probably a toddler's dream come true in a mall with wide open spaces, artsy installations and all rounder fun, fun, fun. 

We walked past a gorgeous florist outside the BIG grocery store that makes really unique and elegant bouquets.

Speaking of the BIG grocery store, my eyes were wide with wonder at all the funky stuff they were carrying, Fairy Godma had already pre-warned me not to "squeal or hop around" (her exact words, not mine).

I mean take a look at this - lettuce still growing hydroponically in the store itself, talk about fresh!

Leafy trees and a gigantic T2 stand inside BIG!

There was only so much my mind could take from all the internal squealing I did so we took a break for dinner at Ben's General Food Store ... which lead to more high pitched squealing. Every single thing about Ben's is so cool.

 Remember those old school enamel plates? Ben's manages to make them look uber cool. Plus they're unbreakable (I think) so they're toddler friendly. The mushroom pizza had to be one of the best I've ever tried and the dollop of mascarpone cheese in the centre is sheer genius.

More exploring Publika - too bad most of the arty shops were closed by the time we were there. I was a little surprised at how huge and spread out it was. There were soooo many cool looking cafes that I wanted to eat at that I wished I was a cow with four stomachs to fill!

And a pit stop at Wondermilk at Publika before heading back for the night. If it helps, Bubs loved the milk there ... I'm not a huge fan of drinking milk so I was glad Bubs was there to help me drain the cup dry ;)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

KL: The food!

With the amount of food we ate in KL, I think we packed on the pounds while burning a hole in our wallet. Gardens at the Mid Valley was our playground for the past few days and we were impressed with a couple of the restaurants there.

Hokkaido Ichiba was a hidden gem. It looked deceptively small from the outside and comprises of 3 sections: Kita No Zen (restaurant), Hokkaido Ice Cream (ice cream parlour) and a Japanese grocery mart inside. The food served was so mind blowing-ly fresh and amazing that we ate there twice!

 The unagi was grilled to perfection with no burnt bits or sickly sweet commercial tasting sauces. It was lovely and had a decent portion that went perfectly with pickles and rice. 

The sashimi with sushi rice was absolutely stellar! The pieces of salmon sashimi were thickly cut, luscious, silky smooth and for a simple dish, this totally stood out.

I am a sucker for anything salted caramel so Hubs looked at it dubiously when it was served. After taking a single bite, Hubs, Bubs and I were fighting each other for more of this, The butterscotch sauce and flaked almonds added a touch of sweetness to the salty caramel and waffle - it was utter perfection.

There was also Plan B at Mid Valley which serves a delightful breakfast. Do you know how hard it is to pick and narrow down desserts when there were 1001 gazillion yummy looking things tempting us?

I am a sucker for beautifully poached eggs, avocado and carbs of all kind. This tasted as yummy-licious as it looked.

Fairy Godma couldn't believe her ears when we told her that we ordered French toast at Plan B. "But this is something you could make yourself!" she spluttered. True, but it wouldn't be done on such gorgeously thick slabs of bread, nor served with grilled bananas, macadamias or served with a generous dollop of thick cream. 

Grins all around after all the food we've been having ;)

And just in case you need anymore convincing that we weren't well fed, there were DelectableTreats by Su desserts that made a very luxurious and sinful breakfast in bed the next day. The giant peanut butter macaroon (RM10) was worth every single bite of it!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


We took a mini trip to KL to visit friends that had newborns and had so much fun hanging out, ignoring bedtimes, nom-ing lots of forbidden food (cakes, juices and ice cream almost daily for Bubs!) and going my darnest best to boost the retail industry ;)

I had to check out the hype about H&M and dragged Hubs and Bubs to trek across Lot 10 all the way from Pavilion KL :D 3 whole floors of cheap chic for her, him and little ones and it was packed full of shoppers crammed like sardines. I walked out empty handed though - all the items I'd eagerly looked forward to was sold out or ran out of my size at the shop.

I couldn't help popping into a few stores ... or two ... or three.

I went a little crazy going "oooooh, I want that!" at most of the places we went to. Bubs had the time of his life riding in shopping carts, he actually cried when we pushed the cart back to Ikea.

The Ikea wooden train set was a huge hit with Bubs though can I confess that Hubs and I are stumped over how to make the rails end in a close loop without any pieces leftover? These things are like an IQ puzzle to us!

I splurged royally on myself - Melvita argan oil, Sephora pencil eyeliner in khaki (lasting power wasn't too good but for RM21, the colour and quality was pretty amazing), Fresh Sugar Rose (onto my 2nd tube now, this is how much I love this stuff!) and a few updates to my wardrobe ;)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Daiso & Watson Goodies

I'm one of those people that can't walk into Daiso or pharmacies without coming out empty handed. While browsing in the store, lots of cutesy little stuff would catch my eye and I'd go "ooooh, I so need that!" or "how amazing that would be!" and before I know it, I'm happily clutching my purchases and Hubs making remarks about how easily fools and their cash are parted ...

Case in point - I walked into Daiso looking for unbleached tea filter bags for loose leaf tea.

I walked out clutching the tea filter bags ....... along with a teddy bear shaped rice mold, a smiley face puncher thingamajig to punch onto dried seaweed to make Bubs happy and a lint removing washing machine whatchamacallit.

The lint removing washing machine whatchamacallit was an Absolute Necessity. Someone, who shall remain unnamed, included a used Mamy Poko into the washing machine. The diaper was washed extremely clean, however the tiny little cotton fibers inside exploded and covered most of our clothes with it. I tried re-washing them to no avail and promptly grabbed these lint removing thingies from Daiso the moment I spotted them. They look and feel weird, like a ping pong ball covered with a plastic loofah. After popping them in for a wash with the lint-y clothes, I was pleasantly surprised that most of the lint did indeed come out. Yay for Daiso!

I've been looking around for the Ped Egg for ages since I first heard about them from online forums so I was squealing with joy when I spotted these babies at Watson for RM49.90. These things are meant to be a modern version of the pumice stone to remove callouses and other gross skin on on your feet. The plastic felt slightly cheap and I was a hesitant about applying too much pressure (these are shaver blades after all!) but found them to be really gentle.

It looks and works exactly like a cheese grater, lol and you'd be surprised at how much flaky dead skin you'd find accumulated inside the Ped Egg after a good use. I like to put on a really thick moisturizing cream like Moo Goo or good old olive oil/coconut oil on my feet and wear thick socks after these and wake up in the morning to nice, soft feet.

Am I the only person on this planet that hasn't heard of a konjac sponge to scrub your face with? It looked really bizarre in the packaging - it was still moist. After removing makeup, I apply cleanser to my face and instead of washing the cleanser off with water, I use the konjac sponge to scrub my face with it. It is incredibly gentle and honestly, I felt as though I was using a dense wedge of sponge cake all over my face. My skin felt softer and I couldn't stop raving about how amazing it is! I'm still contemplating a Clarisonic but the difference in the price tag (3 digit price tag vs a 2 digit cheapie one) means that I'll continue holding onto the konjac sponge for a little while longer :)
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