15 January 2018

Imagine Dragons!

Saturday night was awesome!  By sheer luck, we found out that Imagine Dragons was coming to Hong Kong and we managed to get tickets to see them live in concert (again).  It was so cool to enjoy the concert with the kids.  Josh and Zoe actually knew the words to pretty much all the songs and were singing along with gusto (well, Zoe more than Josh).  

I think we enjoyed this concert more than the last time Imagine Dragons was here, because (1) the kids are older now, (2) they knew all the songs, and (3) not as shy to really get up and do what people do at concerts.  At the last concert, they were both embarrassed by us cheering and singing out loud and going woo hoo!  We told them that that was just generally what people do at pop concerts; they didn't think it was "proper."  No, they did not go wild this time either, but both got into it more and did not shush me or ask me to sit back down.  They were singing and cheering and clapping along and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. 

Singwa - Wed, 17 Jan 2018

Imagine Dragons is such a great band.  I love their music.  Generally, rock is not my 'thing,' but there's something about the beat (and the lyrics) in their songs that I love.  We saw the usual teens and young professionals at the concert, but there were also plenty of pre-teens and families attending... and the best thing is that everybody really got into it and rocked the concert, making for a really cool experience overall.  J even ran into his English teacher at the concert! 

We will definitely want to see them again the next time they come to Hong Kong.  Them... and Billy Joel and Andrea Bocelli. 

09 January 2018

Ichiran... ❤

My son is a foodie.  A real foodie.  At 13 (well, almost 13).  Last week, he requested that we go out and try out a new place.  I love that he's game.  I've been hearing about this ramen place where they serve only one type of ramen (tonkotsu ramen), where each person gets a "booth" to themselves, where the entire experience is done with very minimal human interaction.  The weather has been cool (it's around 8°C /45°F today) and I thought it'd be nice to check out Ichiran and have a nice, hot bowl of ramen.

Off we went and made it there by 12 noon.  We were congratulating ourselves for getting there early enough that we didn't have to queue up.  Once inside, though, we realized that we'd patted ourselves on the back too soon. There was a line inside that snaked around.  We decided to just wait since we were there already.  About 30 minutes in, we were finally seated at our respective booths.  I just call them booths, but essentially, you are seated along a bar, but there are dividers between you and the people on both sides of you.

They handed each of us an order slip where we could indicate our preferences on how our ramen would be prepared:  the richness of the stock, firmness of the noodles, the spice level, how much garlic we'd like, whether or not we'd like spring onions and/or the pork slices.  We could also indicate if we'd like extra sides (dried seaweed, salted egg, mushrooms, etc.)  Both of us mainly went with the recommended selections, but opted to up the garlic level. 

You press a button, someone comes to take the order slip.  You get a cup (for water that you self-serve from your own tap on the table in front of you) and chopsticks. When your order is ready, they serve it to you and bring down the bamboo curtain that separates you from the area where the food is prepared, leaving you to savor your ramen in peace.

Singwa - Wed, 10 Jan 2018

It was easily one of the best ramen I've had... ever.  The broth was so flavorful, the noodles were just right.  The word that both J and I kept saying as we were eating --flavorful.  Suffice it to say that we will be going back there again... and again... and again.   I won't say more.

Once done, we grabbed our order slip, a copy of which was discreetly placed in a holder on our table, and went out to pay.  By then, there was long line, not just inside the restaurant, but also outside, down the block!  See?

If you ever are in Hong Kong (or Japan or Taipei or Brooklyn, NY), do check out Ichiran.  Don't let the long queues deter you. The ramen is well worth the wait!

01 January 2018

Happy 2018!

Happy new year, everyone!  I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday break.  I'd been doing a lot of baking over Christmas.   I finally made a batch of pineapple tarts just for us!  In the past, whenever I made pineapple tarts, I usually gave them away to my friend whose son loves them and we got whatever 'extras' that remained.  This time I doubled the recipe and kept a batch for ourselves.  I did run out of filling for our batch, but managed to save the day with chocolate chips!  They turned out rather yummy, so next time, I might play around some more and experiment with other toppers.

Singwa - Wed, 3 Jan 2018

I finally made J his birthday cake (his birthday is in Jan, so that means that I will be making one again for him in a few weeks' time!).  Yes, I owed him a cake all this time, so when specifically asked for a bacon chocolate cake, I could not say no.  I did use turkey bacon and dark chocolate, so we could eat it with less guilt.

Singwa - Wed, 20 Dec 2017

On top of those, I also made a batch of Almond Choc Chip Chia Seeds Cookies.  No, I didn't take a pic of those and now they're all gone.  I'll have to remember to take some pictures of them next time.  Those are my favorite cookies to make (and eat!).

I look forward to discovering and exploring new recipes this year and experimenting.

What are you looking forward to in 2018?

12 December 2017

w e d n e s d a y

It's promising to be another busy week this week.  No more after-school activty clubs, but there's still Z's panto tomorrow.  I'm running around trying to finish my Christmas shopping.  There are still a few on my list that I'm still trying to figure out what to get for.  I have managed to wrap up a number of the presents that I'd gotten.  I love wrapping!  Lazy bum that I am, I still have not gone through the bags and boxes of things that I want to have cleared out before my parents arrive... so there's that for the next couple of days.  The weekend will see us helping distribute goodie bags to a home for the elderly.  I really think that it's a worthy exercise for the kids. Maybe it can be something that we can do every year starting now.  

Very busy, but loving it... and really looking forward to the holidays!

Singwa - Wed, 13 Dec 2017

I don't remember the title of this piece of art (above), but it was something I saw when we were in the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) in Brisbane last year. There's something about it that I really like.

{Also linking up with The Good.  The Random.  The Fun;

05 December 2017

w e d n e s d a y

We occasionally have game nights.  One of our favorite games is Taboo.  We had started with parent-child pairings, but once the kids discovered that they were more successful if they team up with each other (instead of with a parent), it's now always us vs. them.  They somehow always manage to beat us.  It's like they have their own unique language!  J is excellent at giving clues and Z great at getting what he means.  They have their own secret references to things.  Maybe not so secret; maybe we're just not young or hip enough.  Hmmph.  We tell them that we're just going easy on them whenever they win. They smirk and go, "Yeah, right."

Singwa - Wed, 6 Dec 2017

{Also linking up with The Good.  The Random.  The Fun;


29 November 2017

w e d n e s d a y

Why is it that as the year winds down things get so busy?  A good kind of busy, though.  Also, with the nicer, cooler weather, getting things done is just so much more pleasant.  We stilll have a couple of weeks to go before the schools break for the holidays.  There are stilll drama rehearsals, scout meetings, piano lessons, netball practices and tournaments.  There is the Christmas pantomime. We've done one school fair last week; one coming up this Friday.  Grandparents are arriving for a visit.  Some Christmas gifts ordered and sent out; quite a number still to get.  

How is your end-of-the-year prep shaping up?

Singwa - Wed, 29 Nov 2017


21 November 2017

w e d n e s d a y

Lists.  Are you a list-maker?  I am.  I love lists. I do monthly to-do lists. I make lists of books that I want to read, of books that I think my children will like (and should check out). I make lists of projects that I'd like to tackle.  I have lists of various resources that I think might come in handy.  It gives me an odd sense of satisfaction whenever I can put a check against an item on my to-do lists.  

Singwa - Wed, 22 Nov 2017
{Also linking up with The Good.  The Random.  The Fun;

14 November 2017

Elevator Etiquette 101:  Let the people inside the elevator get out first before barging in.  May I add, too, that while waiting to get in the elevator, we should stand to the side, so that we are not in the way of the people walking out?  Common sense, common courtesy, no? 

*off my soapbox now*

What's your pet peeve?

Singwa - Wed, 15 Nov 2017

{Also linking up with The Good.  The Random.  The Fun;

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