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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Marching on with Best Buddies & Friends

March is a month full of fun, laughter and love. It seemed to be a month of catching up with old friends and new friends alike, and celebrating belated birthdays. 2 of my best buddies birthdays fall on March too.

~*Cyn's Belated Birthday Dinner at Kith Cafe*~

It was an after-work dinner meet up with one of my bestie, Cyn. I needed a place located centrally where we could just sit and chat for hours and hence I suggested Kife Cafe at Park Mall.

The one at Park Mall is a new branch and I do not know if the menu is the same as the one at Robertson Quay. I've been to the latter with my family for a hearty breakfast a while back and I do not know about their dinner menu.

Cyn had some seafood pasta which was absolutely delectable.

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I had the steak sandwich which tasted good except that the steak is a little too well done for my medium-rare-taste-buds.

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Us with our mains.

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For beverage, we had healthy watermelon juice and iced matcha latte. No prize for guessing which beverage mine was.

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An obligatory birthday cake in the form of a slice of oreo cheesecake.

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It took so many shots...

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For Cyn to still not be satisfied with how her face was looking fat, she would have to make do with this.

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We chatted without a moment of silence except to shove morsels of food into our mouths and then we took our chattering from the cafe after it closed to some stone seats a distance away.

There is always too much to catch up with this lady that without having to work the next day, we might had just stayed on to chat till sunrise.

~*Evan's Belated Birthday Dinner at Paradise Dynasty*~

It was yet another after-work dinner affair with another bestie, Evan. Since the birthday gal had no craving for any cuisine in particular, we decided to go with Chinese.

Remember I said I had wanted to try out a whole basket of colourful 小笼包 dumplings all by myself some day in this CNY post? Well, Evan was also enthusiastic in trying the dumplings and so I dragged her to Paradise Dynasty.

As its name suggests, it is a legend of xiao long bao!

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As Paradise Dynasty doesn't accept prior booking, everyone has to take a queue number and wait patiently till the cows come home.

We got #1 and waited 1 hour for our seat. Maybe that was what the "1" meant. Anyway, the numbers were generated randomly and we did not see any patterns to the numbers flashed. The next group after us probably got a ticket number "425" or something.

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The birthday girl had no colourful cake but a basket of colourful 小笼包.

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We were really excited to sink our teeth into the juicy 小笼包.

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Evan's dumplings

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My dumplings

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Could you tell the difference between both baskets?

Evan's dumplings were plumper and more moist. The soup inside my dumplings seemed to be weighing the dumplings flat. I had a difficult time eating them.The skin was also not as moist and they kept sticking to my lips which partly caused the soup to spill in all directions except where it should have been. I was also miffed that my pink Szechuan dumpling came with some of the soup leaking.

To ensure optimum savouring of the 8 distinct flavours, there is a technique of eating them as depicted in the picture below.

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Somehow I feel that my face looks broader and fatter with my glasses.

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Of course, we did not just feast on dumplings for dinner. We shared this bowl of noodles. I can't remember the name; I only recall the soup being very tasty but the noodles overcooked and soggy.

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We also shared the Chilled Sliced Pork in Minced Garlic and Soya Sauce-- one of my favourite Chinese appetizers that I recommended to Evan.

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By the time dinner ended, all the shops in the mall were closed. We walked past Das Erzgebirge-haus, a German toy shop and spent quite some time marvelling at the window display.

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This series of mice look so familiar. They look like those Peter Rabbit kinda style. Any of you know if these mice are from any series of cartoon or story books?

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I was super amused by the biker mice.

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I love all the children mice. Which is your favourite?

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We LURVE the miniature furniture and the exquisite props that are sold separately.

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I was practically swooning over the Parisian looking bathroom and the mini soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrush, towel... Heck, the toilet paper even.

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Look at the books! OMG and the little teaspoon on the napkin and of course the fluffy bed.

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After swooning at all the exquisite miniatures, we continued our never ending conversation and updates at some empty seat in the mall before the security guard politely chased us away. Next exciting stage in life for the both of us would be to look forward to shifting into our new homes respectively once they are ready. I've got so many different favourite home design themes but it would most certainly be disastrous to fit them all into the same home. Time to browse home and design magazines!

~*Byng's Birthday Dinner at Himawari and Hosted*~

It was supposed to be a dinner meet up to celebrate the March babies birthday but that day, only one of the March babies could make it. Happy belated birthday Byng.

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We first met up at Himawari (Alexandra branch) for buffet dinner. Those in the group who ate there before had nothing but praises for the food at such an affordable price. However, I found the food so so. It turned out that those in the group who had eaten there before had their last visit to the place a year ago and by now, the standards seem to have dropped a lot.

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Even their shabu shabu which was not pictured here was a disappointment. We had better shabu shabu for our CNY reunion dinner just 2 months back.

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The people at that side of the table.

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The people at this side of the table... We realised we were all in glasses sans make-up that day.

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After dinner, we popped by Hosted by the Patio which was just next door for after dinner drinks.

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Singing Happy Birthday with a lava cake.

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The spotlight was on the birthday girl while the rest of us were in the shadows.

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The girls

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Us and our drinks (and food).

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The happy couple minus their baby Belle (whose birthday also falls on March).

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I love the decor.

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Even though it was a Thursday night, we chatted till the place closed as it was the Good Friday and Easter Sunday long weekend.

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~*Lunch and KTV with Ex Colleagues Turned Friends*~

On Good Friday, I met up with Viv as well as my "English Peeps" ZY and R for lunch at Orchard 313. Just like back then at work during lunch, my English peeps were still mindless sheep when it came to deciding where to go for lunch. We finally decided on F.I.S.H by Fish & Co. This restaurant is a sister branch to the original Fish & Co and prices were more wallet-friendly. The food was blah though.

Left shows some promotional drink after stirring and right shows before stirring. The giant at the back tasted a lot better than the promotional 1-for-1 drink Viv and I had.

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Viv already had her lunch so she opted for the salad bar. The rest of us unanimously ordered Fish & Chips. I was sorely disappointed by how the Fish & Chips did not even look remotely similar to what was depicted on the menu. The batter wasn't what I expected and the plate looked rather empty.

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After adding some lettuce from the Crispy Silver Fish appetizer, the dish looked more presentable. I did not even take a photo of the silver fish appetizer coz it didn't look like those lightly battered silver fish as per the photo in the menu. The colour was brown instead of golden, it was overly deep fried and hard instead of crispy.

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Part of the English Peeps -- ZY and R. I miss the people in my department so much. All those intellectual discussions, frivolous chats, comic repartee, teasing, lunches, special occasions and buying of and presenting quirky birthday presents. I really miss all those as well.

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R had another appointment so Viv, ZY and I went for a KTV session at a place which offered a Smörgåsbord of Japanese and Korean songs.

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The Jap... The Chinese/ English... The Korean... Yes, Viv was looking at the iPhone for the romanized lyrics of some Korean songs.

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I went back to my family home for dinner after that and my dad commented that he liked my Affliction Free Bird Scoop Neck Tee top a lot. Well, my dad do comment on my clothes but seldom would he be the first to verbalize his comments out and asked me where I buy my clothes from. I love this top exactly like how the website describes it:
"The Free Bird Tee mixes naughty with a bit of nice for one incredibly stylish top. This slim silhouette features a vintage soft fabric in an ultra flattering body with lace sleeves for a flirty touch. Old school style graphics representing Affliction Custom Motors showcase her edgy fashion in bold red, white and blue."

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~*A Celebration of Everyone's Birthday Except Mine*~

I do not meet up with many people from my secondary school unless it came in the form of massive gatherings. Nevertheless, the 4 of us (SY, Sam, C and me) would meet up more regularly (say once or twice a year) for catch up sessions. Whenever we meet in February or March, we would term the meet up as "a celebration of everyone's birthday except Jo's" ever since this outing. And when we meet in May, it would just be for me. They are just so sweet that way to start this tradition since this outing.

I am so behind in my blogging that I totally missed blogging about C's wedding, the subsequent meet up with the girls for tea, the meet up with C when she was pregnant and now she is already a mummy to a beautiful baby girl. This time, there was an addition to the group and the whole idea of this meet up was to see Baby A.

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Baby A has such pretty double eyelids. Oops, she just woke up here.

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How about this? So CUUUUUUUUUTE and pretty! This is my favourite picture of her.

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We decided to meet at Star Vista without having any restaurant in mind to dine at. SY who was there early decided on Itacho Sushi and all of us had no violent objection. It turned out to be a great choice.

All the dishes were presented in very small servings and in an exquisite manner which seemed to heightened its visual appeal. The sashimi was really fresh and almost all the dishes we ordered were delectable. The only gripe was the small portion and its price considering the portion. The small portions made it a little difficult for sharing but we still did anyway. We all felt the food was good and I couldn't understand the low ratings given on hungrygowhere. Time for food porn!

Fatty Salmon Sashimi

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It was so good that we reordered the Fatty Salmon and added Swordfish Sashimi as the 3 above simply wasn't enough for 4 of us.

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Mackerel Sushi

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I can't remember what this was and the hair-like thing could be eaten which didn't quite appeal to me.

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Lobster and Mango Salad Roll

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Salmon Lobster Salad Roll

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Curry Lobster with Tobikko

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This Salmon and Roe Mini Rice was so minute that we were surprised when it arrived as we were expecting something like Salmon Roe Don instead of a sushi. I was so tickled by its size.

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I can't remember what these were as the chef tend to consolidate different items on the menu on the same plate if we ordered them as a batch. I know the pair on the right is the Roasted Squid Leg Sushi.

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Salmon Roe Handroll

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All the shared sushi weren't enough for us that 3 of us had to order Cha Soba each. Only after that did we not feel hungry anymore.

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Chawanmushi with Crab... YUMMY!

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Chawanmushi with Salmon Roe... YUMMIER!

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Baby A had woken up and I think she looked really awkward in my arms. I'm not used to carrying newborns and a few months old babies. Baby A was reaching 3 months old at that time and I was so afraid of her fragile neck.

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She was such a fuss-free baby that day. She seldom cried and even if she did, it was so soft that you could barely hear her. She was so soft that C said "she cries like a girl". To which, we all exclaimed "but she is a girl!"

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SY with Baby A.

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Me with Baby A. The gals were all laughing at the first picture saying Baby A totally buried her face into my chest. Lol

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A parting shot before C left with Baby A almost crying.

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SY, Sam and I adjourned to Black Ball Taiwanese Dessert.

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Part of my gift to the gals -- matcha and sakura flavoured Kit Kat.

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Looking like a school girl that day with my Uniqlo checkered shirt.

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~*Meet up with the Bimbo Sisters*~

On Easter Sunday, the bimbos met up in our childhood neighbourhood mall for dinner. I chose Thai Express since I was the first and saw it being very empty.

I always end up ordering Sen Lek Neua (stick noodles with sliced beef in beef broth) from Thai Express.

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Xtina's chicken

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Seafood otar to share

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Xtina had a new hairstyle and all of us actually thought it was a wig!
Gera became more well-endowed which she insisted was an illusion.
Jo wore the EMO shirt that Xtina gave during my emo period last year.
Zanne was the odd one out without her glasses.

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Do you remember Bubzbeauty's DIY cute felt kitty video which I shared in this post? Zanne's sister saw Daiso selling DIY felt animals and bought some for us to practise on before we advance to purchasing our own materials and making a kitty cat. Of course they don't look as cute as the kitties that Bubz made but for $2, we were really quite excited to get our hands on these inclusive of the felting needle.

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Resharing the DIY felt kitty video here again.


  1. I'm so glad I had dinner before reading this post because your food pics all look so delicious! Baby A is such a cutie and she looks so sweet too.

    Thanks for your nice comment on Rena & Ian! I actually photographed them under a cherry blossom tree. Hubby helped me pose and hold them. My Photoshop skills aren't good enough to place them on that background lol.

    Rowena @ rolala loves

  2. OMG those dumplings are delicious! Really cool! First time I saw it with different flavors! Woot! :)

    Thanks for visiting my blog too dear. I appreciate it. Thanks for sharing thoughts about the follow-each-other requests. We follow if we like. Well, so far, I followed you now dear. If you like my blog too, feel free to follow :)

    Thanks a lot!

    ★♡ New Post (^_^) ♡★
    SheInside Giveaway and Product Review
    How SheInside does their giveaways and my thoughts on their products ...

    ❤ ~Chai
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  3. This is a great reminder that I need to get together with my friends more...and live, not just work.

    Sorry about the dumplings. The mice to look familiar, but I can't place them either. I think th elittle girl mouse in the blue dress is my favorite.

  4. hey jo! i love birthday dinner celebrations. i can't get over those different color dumplings. so unique! at least to me. hahaha Baby A is so beautiful! hahaha she cries like a girl. that was too funny! beautiful baby. thanks for sharing these pics. now i'm super hungry!

  5. wahhh so much yummy food.. friends & birthday gatherings.. i'm so jealous!! especially of the different xiao long bao's.. omgosh all the flavors look so good i would love to try the cheese and foie gras ones!!

    i think you look pretty with glasses.. it makes you look like you are sexy and smart at the same time hehe :p

    those little kitty kats are so cute!!

    yes i prefer synthetic leggings to real leggings too.. the real ones are too stiff and sometimes i feel like it's hard to breath in them haha

    yes date plans in europe are crazy expensive.. how much are they in asia??

  6. Yummy food pictures, feel hungry now :) Beautiful friends too and the baby was darling!! I'm glad you had a great time. Sorry it took me a while to reply, I had to get a new computer as my other one stopped working. I think helping with my Uncle on his cars did start my love of vintage in some ways :) Kizzy is my middle name, I'm never called by my first name really, which is Timbarika. It's too hard for people to say, haha. I've always been called Kizzy though, even by family. Sometimes I use it on my blog and other times I guess I forget to :)) I hope you've been well doll xx

  7. Wow nice photos of the food .It is so delicious .It makes me wanna eat it .It is great being here ? nice blog too ..

    Do keep in touch .Do comment my latest post

  8. Food overload and its making me hungry! I've never seen dyed pork dumplings before. How are they?

  9. Hi Jo, thank you for dropping by my blog. Yes, we are definitely neighbors! =) Indeed most of my followers tend to come from the other side of the world.
    Wishing you a Happy Belated Birthday and it seems like each celebration, you definitely looked happy =) You have a great blog and I hope you'll keep blogging =)

  10. Rowena,

    Thanx for your lovely words.
    OIC, now I get it! No wonder the background looked 3 dimensional.


    Chai Chen,

    The original dumplings are still the best!

    Thank you for dropping by my blog and leaving a comment. I saw part of your reply on my gmail but I’ve yet to read it in its entirety on your blog. I will do so soon and yes or course I would follow you too. It’s not always when we come across bloggers with so many similar viewpoints.



    I was hoping you would know the answer as you seemed like you would know all these classic mice stories. Hehehe. My favourite is the one popping out of the tent! Yes, you have to take a break and smell the flowers. Life is not all about work. Really easier said than done but we all have to try to put other factors like family and loved ones as priority above work.



    Thank you for your sweet words. Ah, we should always make it a point to be full when viewing blogs as most of the times, there would be too many irresistible food pictures on blogs.



    The foei gras dumplings actually tasted just like meat. I couldn’t discern any liver taste. Quite a waste not to be able to taste it. Ooh… thanx for your compliments about the glasses, dear. Sexy and smart… Me likey!

    In Singapore, we have 3 main telcom service providers and all of them tend to have competitive pricing much to the customers benefit. There are really many plans to choose from depending on how heavy a user you are but I reckon that it is really much more affordable in Asia.



    Thank you for the sweet words. Ah, thanx for the explanation. Yes yes, Timbarika is on your FB or Pinterest I remember this name. I would call you Kizzy then!



    Thank you for dropping by and commenting. I love seeing newcomers around. Will drop by your blog soon.



    Some of the flavours are really quirky. I personally like the original, ginseng and black truffle. The rest have slightly strong taste. I’m hungry now thinking of truffles. Lol


    Diva In Me,

    Thanx for stopping by to comment. Oh, it wasn’t my birthday. It was the birthdays of various friends. =)


I love reading sincere comments and hearing your voice. While blatant self promotion of blogs and follow for follow requests are not advisable, I would love if you leave a mark here with a trackback link so that I could connect with you. I reply to comments here or on your blog so don't forget to check back on replies! =)


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