Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Fall Boots 2014

Happy 11/11!

I was looking through my old posts and this Fall Boots post from 11/11/2012 stood out. Two years later, I'm still obsessed with boots. At the two year anniversary of the post, what good timing to update the most favorite Fall boots for 2014!

Topping the list is still the Stuart Weitzman 50/50. This Over-The-Knee boot is getting as much attention this year as it did in 2012! In fact, I find that OTK boots are more popular this year. Comparable to the 50/50, this Tory Burch's Simone in rich brown is simply gorgeous.


Another OTK boot is Aquatalia's Gilead, again in a beautiful Fall brown "caramel suede."


Then there's the Nina by top model Inga Savits. 

This next pair is called Blondo Evan. They resemble the 50/50 but are less than half the price and are water-proof.  I have not tried them on but according to reviews they're very comfortable.


Next up is this knee-high boot Aquatalia Rhumba. A favorite of Kate Middleton's, these are comfortable, water-proof and absolutely stunning.





Let's look at the mid-calf boots. I bought the Paul Green Nobu last year in jean color and love them. They are the most comfortable boots I've ever worn.  They are the perfect boots for traveling to places where you know you'd do a lot of walking, like London!


Replacing the Nobu this year is the Paul Green Adison.  They're equally beautiful!  The color shown here is called Anthracite Suede. I really want these too!


Then the booties. Now that the iconic Isabel Marant's Dickers are pretty much sold out everywhere, I'm not having much luck finding the perfect pair. I do like these Paul Green Riley.

Isabel Marant Dickers
Paul Green 'Riley' Bootie
Paul Green Riley


That's all for now.  Hopefully you don't have to wait two years for the next Fall boots post.





Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Awfully Good Waffles, and London

London, ah, what a wonderful place. It had been a good ten years since we last stepped foot on this beautiful city. This time, we traveled there with children. Yes, quite a bit of a change actually but we were ready! And this was the very first time Gebu and B went to this continent.

We were there for merely eight days but we did so much.

The hotel was perfect. Husband got a great deal at a hotel on the river walking distance to the London Eye. We were in a nice big suite!


The Tower of London tour was one of the highlights of the trip. Do you see the raven?
Tower of London

Buckingham Palace is one of the must-see places. It was so crowded that it almost didn't worth the trip there but now we can say "we've been there."
Buckingham Palace

It's important to keep the children interested when traveling abroad so this time we had a quest, or two. Gebu and B have always loved the Mr. Men and Little Miss books. Our quest for this trip was to find the special ones with design on the spine. When the books are in the correct order, they show "My Mr Men Library" written across the spines. So, we visited every single bookshop we walked by from the small W.H. Smith bookshops at the Underground stations to big flagship bookshops such as Foyles and Waterstone.
Foyle's

London Eye - oh yeah, the boys had to ride in the London Eye after the High Roller experience in Las Vegas in the Spring. That was our other quest: to ride in all the gigantic ferris wheels.
Through the London Eye

On our last day in London, husband found this restaurant named The Breakfast Club  on Yelp (or @thebrekkyclub on Twitter) that has amazing reviews and they serve American breakfast! When we got there we saw this massive queue which normally would turn us away but we decided to stick around. One hour later, we were finally seated. When the food arrived we realized it was well worth the wait.
The Breakfast Club



But what does our London trip have to do with waffles you ask. Well, this is how. Our first weekend back, I decided to make waffles from scratch. Most people have a go-to recipe but I don't. I look it up on my tablet every time. And this time, my tablet wasn't charged, I went to my phone instead. My phone, being in London for over a week, like me, is having a hard time adjusting back to the Silicon Valley life style. It pulled up a recipe from BBC Good Food. I must say this is by far the best waffle recipe I've tried. The batter has a much thinner consistency than what I'm used to. I did reduce the salt from 5g to a pinch and sugar from 20g to 12g. Yes, the measurements are in grams and mls. It is important to weigh all dry ingredients.  The waffles are very light, fluffy and just simply yummy! They also freeze well. Next time, I'm going to have to double the recipe!

Ingredients

250g Flour (plain)
7g Baking powder
12g Caster sugar
1 pinch of Salt
475ml Milk
2 Eggs
30ml Vegetable oil

Method

1. Weigh all the dry ingredients, place in a large mixing bowl. Break the eggs into the milk and beat the mixture.

2. Add the egg and milk mixture to the dry ingredients. Add the oil and mix all ingredients together until all the large lumps have been broken up. Do not over mix otherwise the waffles will be heavy when cooked.

3. Preheat the waffle maker and spray with oil.

4. Pour 3/4 of a cup of batter into the waffle maker and cook for 3-4 mins or until golden brown and crispy on the outside.

5. Serve hot with maple syrup. Also good served with sliced banana or blueberries.

6. Cooked waffles can be frozen and heated up in the toaster. Unused batter mixture can be kept in a container in the fridge for up to 2 days.
Awfully Good Waffles

Did you see my new favorite thing? The porcelain egg crate for my fresh eggs! Thank you Jen! 




Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Summer Lovin'

I was so ready for school to be over and to start our summer vacation. Not to waste any time, we got on the airplane two days after school was out. Here we are in the beautiful city of Hong Kong once again.



I've always enjoyed Goodwill hunting for June.  I found this LeSportsac Deluxe Everyday Bag for $3.99 at Savers. I've never owned a LeSportsac product before but thought this would be nice for our summer travels. It's light and has plenty of compartments. A brand new one costs between $82 and $102, depending on the print.


Headed to check out, I saw this brand new tote+able water tote for $3.99, originally at $19. It's so cute and just perfect for all these hiking trips husband has planned for the summer.


Let's check out what lili found for June.

Monday, May 12, 2014

May Flowers

My garden is a little behind schedule this year. My tulips are usually blooming beautifully by now but they're still just barely peeking out from the ground. My hydrangeas are leafy and looking healthy but no blooms yet. The only flowers I have are these beautiful red ones from the pomegranate tree and the alyssums.





Months ago during the holiday break, I found this dress from Nano's Salvation Army. It's been hung in my closet ever since. I knew I was going to use it for May's post because in my memory, it was a floral print dress. Then I took it out of my closet to take photos and realized it really isn't floral. Oh well. It'll have to do.  It is "free people" and I do remember it being a really good deal. But of course I had forgotten how much I paid. 


Can't wait to check out what lili found for May.

Next month, Summer Lovin'.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April Showers

April shower has always been a tough one for me. Ideally, I'd like to find a raincoat like the one lili found a couple of year ago.  I was jealous. 

Those good finds don't come easy so I had to be creative. Since I've been on this homesteading mode lately and April is typically an important month for gardeners, I thought it's not too much of a stretch to find something about gardening for this month's theme April Showers. At The Shop one day, I saw this book on Kids Gardening for $2. 

like my white picket fence? 

the graphics are so cute

The boys and I planted the beans together. Beans are such a fool proof choice if you're planting with kids. They sprout easily and grow quickly. It's very satisfying.


Peas are another wonderful choice. I planted the seeds directly in the ground about 2 months ago and harvested our first peas this week. The leaves are edible too. I roasted the leaves on a lightly oiled skillet until they turn dry and crispy. Kids love them!   


Let's check out what lili found for April Showers. Next month, May Flowers.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Earth Day and chickens

Happy Earth Day everyone!

To honor this year's Earth Day, we decided to raise some chickens. A month ago on a sunny Saturday, we brought home a chicken coop from Costco. The boys worked nicely together and assembled it. 




A quick snapshot of the lemon tree, I had to.


The next day, the chickens arrived in the cutest delivery truck from Dare to Dream Farms


Owner Jeremy gave us a quick lesson on raising chickens.




This is a big step towards my home-steading dream.  Happy Earth Day!

Monday, March 31, 2014

It ain't easy to be green

That's right. It wasn't easy but I found this green windbreaker at Savers. Priced at $30 but with green tag half off, took it home for $15! I've never heard of the brand, Ariat, so I did some research. It makes high quality footwear and apparel for equestrian athletes. The quality of this windbreaker was what attracted my attention. It's a bit pricey for Savers standard but the jacket looks new. It's also a very nice, versatile green. It's a good find!




Looks like lili found something in the same category! Great minds!

Next month, April Showers.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Love is in the air

Valentine's day was a few days ago but love is still in the air.

I spent part of the morning at Savers and found a new heart-shaped baking dish and a book about the hill towns of Italy. The dish had a green tag which meant half price that day. For $0.99, I took it home. Maybe I'll make a tiny molten lava cake for our upcoming anniversary. The book was $2.99. Some day husband and I will make a trip out there. How romantic would that be.



After the hunt at Savers, I went to a nominating committee meeting for the District Council and then to the boys' classroom parties. Gebu started working on his valentines goodies days before the big day.  He decorated some cellophane bags with heart-shaped stickers, put a See's Candy lollipop in each, twist-tied them closed, then stapled a handmade heart-shaped card on the bag. He carefully hand-wrote each card and couldn't wait to give them to his friends. He definitely took this seriously. B, on the other hand, decided he was not going to give out valentines this year.  Maybe after a certain age, for boys, it's no longer cool. 

I must mention this side story. The night before Valentine's day, yeye and nano arrived, a day earlier than planned. We decided to surprise the boys. We were on Google hangout with them as they knocked on the door. Gebu had this confused stare still trying to process what was going on while B got it right away and couldn't stop laughing. Their reactions were priceless.

For dinner, the six of us went to Umami Burger. They do have the best burgers in the world. It may not be romantic but I sure had a great meal and a great day.


Hope you had a sweet Valentine's day. Let's see what lili found. Next month, It ain't easy to be green.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

New Year Resolution

Happy new year!

While I was scratching my head, literally (long story), and tried to decide on what my new year resolution was this year, I looked at last year's resolution and realized I didn't do much with resolution #2: up-cycle. I did cut off a T-shirt and made an infinity scarf that I never wore. I also cut off the toes of husband's sock and used the tube part to make a "donut" for my sock bun. Although these simple projects are technically up-cycle projects, this year I want to make something a little more advanced.

I love tote bags. It's an obsession. I can never have too many of them. When I saw this Abercrombie shirt from Nano's Salvation Army 49 cents stash, a vision came to me.  I didn't take a photo of the shirt before it was taken apart but you can see from the photos below that it has two flap pockets in the front and an embossed pattern on the back.  The bottom piece was a sleeve.



My initial design was to simply turn the front of the shirt into the front of the tote. I thought it was the easiest way although I typically don't like bags that look like a shirt. I'm not a big fan of recycled jeans bags either. Totes shouldn't look like shirts or pants. Period.

So after putting in some Googling efforts and in talking to my sister-in-law, I decided to turn the shirt into a knitter's tote. Inspired by Spotted Stones, here's what we ended up with. I say "we" but it was all Nano.


It looks nothing like a shirt but we used every part of the shirt to make this tote. The top pocket in the front of the tote was once the shirt placket. 


 The back of the shirt is the back of the tote.


The front flap pockets of the shirt are now in the inside of the tote. 


Oh, forgot to mention the beautiful chandelier in the sewing room.

 

I'm so excited about this tote. Hopefully, I'll knit more and sew more this year.

Let's see what lili found this month.

Next month, Valentine's Day.



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