Monday, March 28, 2016

Amazing Finds: Flying Home

An Amazing Find!

Today, while just walking around the town, something up in the sky…

...caught my eye.

It was a flying V of all things…

...A hundred birds with two hundred wings.

What brought my eyes from the ground to the sky?

I stood on the corner and wondered why…

My mind cleared of all the stress of the day...

As I looked at the sky that reminded me of Seattle's gray…

 Were these birds coming or going?

I continued walking to Yuen Long Plaza without knowing…

 More flying Vs came, wave after wave…

And wave after wave the joy of the sight of these birds gave.

As I extended my eyes back to ground level, I noted that others' turned their eyes to the sky,

And that's when I decided to say goodbye.

It was nice to see these birds pass by…

But, it was high time that I got my afternoon cup of tea and pie!

Friday, March 25, 2016

First Fridays: Never Too Late

Since becoming obsessed with hanging out at Yoho Mall, I've been walking past this place almost weekly:  Never Too Late.  It has such a cool display outside…and such a catchy name.  We made it a point to try it out, but never really did for weeks…until TODAY!

We dropped in around lunch time, which was noon-ish and there were plenty of seats available.  Most people dropped in around 1pm…so, that's a good thing to note.  Maybe next time…if we are in the area, we might drop in around noon again to try something else?

Never Too Late Info:
Shop 7, Ground Floor Chun Chu House
1 Castle Peak Road
Yuen Long

2442 0 7888

Daily from noon to 10:30 pm.

***It's easy to find because it's right next to Aloy Mak Mak (one of the popular Thai restaurants on Castle Peak Road (Yuen Long section).

The great thing about this place is that they offered a lunch set menu.  With the lunch set, they offered a soup, a salad, a main dish, and a drink (coffee or tea).  It made me wonder if there were desserts offered for dinner!!!!

Another great thing is that the price of the set and the portion of the dishes are pretty good.  The soup was a sensible quantity.  The salad was a good quantity (even the amount of dressing sprinkled on top was a good amount).  And the main dish was a good size.  Though, I do wish the drinks were bigger.  But, the drinks were small…like most cafes in the area.

The third great thing about this place was the service.  The staff were so incredibly attentive to us.  That alone makes me not mind returning no Never Too Late for the dinner options!

Inside, the decor is pretty chic, modern and clean.  I was totally into that.  It is another one of the more fancier places in Yuen Long town!

For starters, we got bread and soup…

Then a green salad…

I got a lemon tea…

My husband got the coffee…

I got the cod for my main dish…

This was all right.  Besides the slab of cod, it was a mix of mashed potatoes (which is total soul food for me), spinach and cheese.  The spinach and mashed potatoes were the highlight for me though…

My husband got the chicken…

This was nice.  It was orange flavored and also came with a pillow of mashed potatoes.

Overall, this was a nice place to try.  There was steak on the menu…which sort of makes me want to go back…

1.  I liked the ambience.  Quite a nice change from the local HK Style Cafes!

2.  The price was right.

3.  It's a nice quiet place to have a luncheon.

4.  The staff were so nice!

5.  The lunch set was a total bang for my buck! (talking about proportions to the dollar)

Monday, March 21, 2016

Morning Walk

There are times when I just get up early enough to have time to take a walk around my neighborhood.  It takes me back to childhood when my sister and I would walk with our dad around the neighborhood.  Since we lived back in Honolulu those days, we usually just walked to the neighborhood grocery store and picked up shaved ice before returning back home.  

I think it was probably my dad's best way of getting us out of the house and exercising…since we weren't that much into sports back then.  Those walks were really a great thing…and it's probably why I enjoy walking so much as an adult.

This morning, the weather was pretty fine!

So, I walked around just to get some fresh air and took a rest at the mini sports ground that sits along side the Yuen Long watercourse way.

Sometimes, when walking by this court at night, I see loads of kids just playing soccer or basketball out here.  And on the weekends, there are loads of people just chilling and having picnics on the bleachers. It really is a nice space that people can go to and just hang out.  It's also where a lot of the ethnic minorities (LIKE MYSELF!) like to hang out.

It's a pretty safe place to take kids and let them run around and meet other kids too.

The court, which I often times just call the basketball court, is really a football pitch…but it sits across from the Yuen Long West Bus Terminus.  It's a convenient place to eat lunch if you pick something up from one of the eateries around the Bus Terminus.  You can also hang out here after shopping at the Yuen Long Plaza, which also sits across from the Kik Yeung Football Pitch.

It's surrounded by a lot of greenery…and also osmanthus bushes (which I love the smell of).  During my morning walk, it was just lovely to smell the osmanthus scent as I passed along the side of the football pitch.  It's also the smell that I love to smell when I head over to the Yuen Long swimming pool.  If there was an osmanthus fragrance bottled up in a perfume bottle…I'd probably buy it!

Anyhow, it was so nice to just take a little stroll around this pitch…which had absolutely no one in it this morning (which is rare I feel!!!)  I mean, aren't there senior citizens that would do tai chi in parks?  Maybe they do their tai chi earlier than 8 am?

Also, along both sides of the football pitch are eateries, electronic shops, and money exchange places that mostly are frequented by the ethnic minorities that live in Yuen Long.  It's actually (it always seems to me) like the most happening place to be on the weekends!

It's mornings like these that motivate me to continue getting out of the house and taking a nice walk.  My favorite place, though, is still Yuen Long Park.  It's just an amazing place to commune with nature, explore…and feel like I am really working out (walking up and down all those stairs!!!)

Keeping up with my New Year's Resolution…one step at a time!

Friday, March 18, 2016

First Friday: Chocolate Binge

In the beginning, it started with a gift of Ferrero Rochers.  They just sat on our coffee table for most of the Chinese New Year…and then, just out of sheer desire to clear out some of the junk food from our home, I opened it up, popped one in my mouth…and then popped five more into my mouth. 

It was like a gateway chocolate.  I mean, I haven't really had any bit of chocolate for a few months now…just because I'm not that much of a chocolate person.  But, this is what started me off on my most recent (this week's) chocolate binge.

And then it happened…

It's been a long time since I've gone out of my way to pick up a bar of chocolate and just enjoy its sweet lovely chocolateness.  When I went down to the grocery store, I saw it at the register and was tempted to pick, not one, but several up!  Yup, just like the Ferrero Rochers.  You can't just have one!

The chocolate bars above were from One Vegan Shop and vary around the $40 HKD mark.  I decided to pick up one of each flavor and have so far enjoyed the ginger, orange and mint ones.  The regular milk chocolate and the lux chocolate bars were also quite nice.  Actually…they all were really nice treats and were consumed within two days.  

The bars, by the way, are not that small…so imagine five 6 inch by 4 inch (approximately) bar of vegan chocolate being consumed with in two days!

Image blurry due to Chocolate Binge state
The same day that I bought those vegan chocolates, I had popped into Taste and wandered over to the candy aisle and picked myself up some Lindt chocolate bars.  I had taken a glance over at the Cadbury chocolate bars…but decided that I should probably go healthy!  LIKE EATING THIS MUCH CHOCOLATE could be healthy!

Anyhow, I sort of reasoned that I could split some of the bars up with my parents (who are visiting) and my husband.  I mean, who doesn't love a bit of chocolate once in awhile!

And I thought I would go a bit more healthy and got the 99% Dark Chocolate Lindt Bars.

These are slower going because I like to savor dark chocolates more!

Fun Fact:  It wasn't until I was 30 years of age when I learned to savor the flavor of dark chocolate.  It was a friend that told me that you had to let it melt on your tongue.  And, you know what…it made eating dark chocolates more enjoyable!

There's always room for a bit of dark chocolate at the end of the evenings!

It's been a good past few days…munching on chocolate squares throughout my days.  I'm not sure if I'll be in the mood for munching on more chocolate bars, but this was definitely a good binge that I don't mind going through!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Maxim Cakes

Sometimes, I wonder where my head is!  I always try to capture things that I do during my days…but sometimes, the images come out quite blurry.  I think, in this case, I was just overly excited to eat some mini cakes!

The Maxim Cake Taste Test
Apologies for the blur...

Has anyone else passed a Maxim's bakery in the MTR and wanted to test out the cakes?

They always look so beautiful and decadent…but then I think about how most cakes that I get at any of the local bakeries are mostly filled with air.  When I eat a cake, I like the ones that are more dense…like cheesecakes…over mousses.

But, today, we were having guests over to our humble little abode and they brought over some Maxim cakes.  It was the perfect time to taste test them…

They were all little pies.  One was a peach pie, which was filled with whipped cream.  It was pretty good…though, IF ONLY THE PEACH WERE FRESH!!!

I was looking forward to the Oreo cake, but the Oreo was a bit soggy.  The cream below it was pretty  nice though.

I'm always a fan of chestnuts…so I was looking forward to taste testing this one…it was also nice and filled with cream…

The last one that I tried was a fruit medley.  This was nice because of the fresh fruit, but it was also filled with cream...

The mini cakes were pretty nice for afternoon tea.  They were a light little treat, which I totally appreciated!!!!  It's interesting how these cakes are filled mainly with cream.  It is what makes it a good little treat.

Today was one of those days when I could say that I CAME, I SAW, and I CONQUERED.  Yup, it was nice to be able to try out the Maxim Cakes.  It's one of those things I would not have done on my own.

I think that I might not go out of my way to hunt down a Maxim's cake, but…when in Rome…I would totally not mind having one of these little treats again!

And…whenever you need a Maxim's it is just around the corner!  So, it's like 7-Eleven…convenient to get a sweet fix!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Sushi Sei @ the IFC Mall

Central Binge (n):  When I go into Central and do as much as I can within a short span of time.

I often go on Central binges when I do make it into the city these days.  I had a time limit of three hours before an appointment…within those three hours, I went to pick up some books at the Central Library, bought some baby gear at Bumps to Babes, grocery shopped at City Super, bought some takeout from Tim Ho Wan, and had lunch at the IFC's Sushi Sei…

So, it was a morning of the Hong Kong Hustle, but I had enough time to enjoy my lunch.

Sushi Sei Info:
Shop 2016 IFC Mall
8 Finance Street

Mondays - Fridays from 11:30 - 3 pm
Weekends (+ Public Holidays) from noon - 5:30 pm

Mondays - Fridays from 6 - 10:30 pm
Weekends (+ Public Holidays) from 6 - 10:30 pm

This was definitely one of the fancier Japanese restaurants I've been to.  The staff were really nice too.  They really took care of us, which is a really nice change from people just giving us food and not minding if we enjoyed it or not…

The place was quite nice and modern.  There were little touches of Japanese culture here and there…

We got one Donburi Set, which came with a small salad…

…a small bowl of noodles…

…and our tuna donburi…

We also got an oyster to test out…which was really nice!

We got a spinach salad to test out, which was also really nice.  It had little shrimp in the dressing, which made it have a nice little crunch.

And we got a tempura set on the side…

Overall, the food was really good.  I'm not sure about this, but we were served brown rice…which always seems like a healthier option than white rice!  It was also quite nice sitting at the bar because we could see the sushi chefs make sushi.  That was really a good experience, which reminded me of when I was in Tsukiji (or Japan in GENERAL!)!

This was totally a nice place to try out.  TOTALLY RECOMMENDED to those who are in the IFC and looking for a nice Japanese restaurant!