London Day Out (16-2-2016)

I love having days out with either my friends or my family. My friend and I decided to have a London Day Out with her & her kids since it was half term. We had originally planned to go to London’s Sealife Aquarium, and well that didn’t work out as planned. Since it was half term, nearly all the places in London were crowded with kids and tourists. This meant that walking through London was going to be a challenge. One word of advice when it is kids holiday times, always book your tickets in advance to make sure you can actually go to the attraction. Normally in the past, we were able to just walk up to the attraction and purchase tickets on the day. After queuing in a long line for a few minutes, we were told that all the tickets were sold out and we should try in at 3-4pm to see if there was any tickets left. I was quite surprised since I never heard of a aquarium having sold out of tickets before and it wasn’t the greatest feeling knowing that you had stood there for a while before being told. So we decided to go to Ripley’s Believe it or not in Piccadilly Circus.

Once arriving at Ripley’s, there wasn’t actually much of a queue which I was glad about. (If you traveled by train to London, it’s best to get the 2 for 1 deal to purchase tickets. Much cheaper than) The total cost for 2 adults and 4 kids were roughly £100 with the 2 for 1 deal. The building has 4 levels of different weird things, from shrunken heads to pictures made from lint. Many interesting things, that was still very weird. And let’s just say that it’s fine to take prams into this place but requires finding staff workers to take you through the lifts, since everywhere is stairs. I won’t say much about the things I saw here, since it’ll be much more interesting to see them yourself than me explaining it. Though here are a few things I saw to tempt you.

 

Overall even though I wasn’t sure the kids would like the place, they seemed to enjoy themselves looking at the weird things considering that the kids were 4-9 years old. They had fun especially through the mirror maze (photo below, sorry about it being blurry but you get the gist), which is one of the attractions that everyone should go to (well for those that don’t mind dark places and are quite careful. The first time I went in it, I bumped into the mirror many times. This was why they suggest having your arms straight forward. Lol) S1050999There is another attraction in the building called the Laser Race but due to the long queue, we decided not to do this. But this is a place that is worth the money to visit and a must for those like weird things.

Afterwards we decided to go for lunch at Ed’s Easy Diner near Leicester Square. For those that don’t know, Ed’s Easy Diner is an American themed diner that specializes in burgers and milkshakes. So obviously I had to have a burger and milkshake. I chose a Chicken BLT with onions rings, coleslaw & fries (£12) and an Oreo milkshake (£5).

The food and drink were delicious though the experience would have been better if the service was better. When we entered the place, we weren’t greeted with anyone. There were no waiters around except the kitchen staff who didn’t say anything, and with a sign saying you have to wait here until you’re taken to your seats. We stood for a few minutes until nearly when I was going to sit down a staff appears. That staff member seemed to be the only one that was only working, took a while before I actually was able to place my order as he was most of the time not to be seen. 2 more waiters then appeared after receiving my food asking if we were okay with our food. (Where were they hiding?) Overall the price of the food was a reasonable price considering that the plate was actually huge and the milkshake was so thick with ice cream. It actually made up for the service at the beginning. Though this was my first experience at this place, I’m sure that it might have just been this one place. But will definitely try again Ed’s Easy Diner in another location though.

As we were heading to the end of the day, we decided to take the kids to M&M world and Nickelodeon store. For both of these shops, the prices to me were quite high compared to other shops that you can buy these things. Though M&M world have many items that you can’t actually purchase in normal shops, this might be why the prices were so high. A magnet with a Letter and a couple of small images of the M&M characters was about £7. Walking around the shop is interesting to see the different characters and items that they have from cups, M&M dispensers & choosing your own M&M colours as the shop is quite large. I do love the personalised M&M though. (I might have to try it sometime for a special occasion.)DSCN4513

The Nickelodeon shop is actually quite small and mainly filled with SpongeBob stuff compared to the other characters & shows. But being a SpongeBob fan, I was quite happy. Even though some things were expensive, especially the clothes. I had treat myself after that long day. I purchased (you might have seen the photo from my instagram):

  • A long V-neck monochrome shirt for £26 (bit expensive but why not?)
  • A sweater for £6.50 (such a great deal)
  • A Patrick Star vinyl figure (wanted SpongeBob but couldn’t find it, even the staff tried looking for it for me)
  • Spongbob recycle bag for £2.99 (actually broke on the side which I was kind of disappointed about. The side split.)20160216_194610

Anyways that was my long exciting day out with my friend and her kids. Hope you enjoyed reading this, and maybe you found it interesting and try new things!

Have a nice day! (Hopefully your weather is  better than here, currently it’s very windy here in the UK)

XXX

🐵 Gong Hei Fat Choy! 🐵 🎊

Happy Chinese New Year to all my readers! (even if you don’t celebrate it) For those that don’t know, today the 8th February 2016 is Chinese New Year! The Year of the Monkey!  🐒 The day where in my household it consists of many phone calls from relatives wishing ‘Happy New Year’, good food and red money envelopes. Truthfully our family doesn’t really do much for the new years since there isn’t really much to do especially if you don’t live near Chinatown in London. But like most people we celebrate with food, which I’m always grateful for.

So i thought I’d share with my readers some of the delicious Chinese New Year desserts that I’m enjoying today (though i enjoy these desserts all year round ^_^)

  • Gok Jai (many different spelling variations)-a traditional dumpling pastry filled with either a sweet or savoury filling that is deep fried. These were given to us by a family friend, who must know that I have a sweet tooth since they went with the sweet option. Yay! These Sweet Gok jai dumpling are filled with both white & black sesame seeds, dried coconut, sugar and peanuts. Traditionally these dumplings are fried, but nowadays many online recipes prefer to go with the healthy option of baking them. These are very simple to make and are very delicious with the sweet crunchy filling.DSCN4688DSCN4689
  • Jian Dui (also known as sesame balls)-a deep fried pastry sesame covered ball made from glutinous flour with a sweet filling. These were made by my mum, who loves to cook. With various sweet fillings to choose from, my mum prefers to make Sweet Sesame Balls with a red bean filling. The savoury option is something that my mum likes to do, though most sesame balls are sweet filling. My mum makes her savoury option for those that don’t like sweets, the filling includes chicken, carrots, water chestnuts & mushrooms. (would have photos of these but they were all eaten by the time I realized that I didn’t take any. You can always google search them )
  • Red Bean Nian Gao or Red Bean Steamed Cake (various names which I’m not sure which is the right-a steamed cake, well I say cake but it has the texture that is springy. This is since the Nian Gao is made of glutinous rice flour, which makes the cake chewy with red bean added to it for extra flavour. 20160207_210536

Hope you enjoyed reading about some of the Chinese desserts that are available. I’m stuffed from eating so much today by the time i finish writing this post. ^_^ Hope everyone has a nice day!

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(My Chinese New Year Monkey Papercut)

December 2015 WOWBOX Review

Hi there! I know it’s a bit late but i thought I might as well post this review up. Anyways for Christmas, I decided to purchase a one off WOWBOX subscription box for my little sister (really I just wanted it for myself). WOWBOX is a monthly japanese subscription box that contains candy and snacks from Japan. They have three different sizes which vary the amount of items received in each box.

  • Small  $14.99 (roughly £11)
  • Medium $24.99 (roughly £18)
  • Large $34.99 (roughly £25)

What’s great about WOWBOX is, they have three different types of themes you can choose from. With all three being quite different. They have:

  • Original Fun & Tasty-contains candies & snacks that are a bit different from the basic and fun to eat.
  • The Classic-contains candies and snacks that are quite popular and well known in japan. Such as pocky sticks
  • Kawaii & Beauty-contains candies and snacks that are suppose to be low calories and good for the body for those that are into eating healthy.

Since I sometimes purchase basic Japanese candy from Chinatown in London, I decided to go with the Original Fun & Tasty Box, since i wanted to try new things that I wouldn’t necessary be able to purchase in the UK. Since a wide range of Pocky sticks are available to purchase in Chinese supermarkets. Using a discount coupon from another review, I was able to purchase the Original Fun & Tasty medium box for £15.28 ($22.50) with free shipping. The box was dispatched on the 9th December 2015 from Japan and arrived in the UK on the 29th December 2015, so it took roughly 2-3 weeks but this might be because of it being close to the Christmas holidays.

WOWBOX has their own personalized box which contains the logo on the top lid like some subscription companies. The material is made of a sturdy box, so when it arrived there were no tears or dents made and was sealed tight with tape making sure it couldn’t open. So my items would survive the treacherous long journey from Japan to the UK. So what did i get in my December subscription box, upon opening you are presented with a nicely designed information sheet with one side saying the month of the subscription box and the other being the actual information sheet of all the products listed. And a nutritional sheet about the items given, for those that like to consider these things when eating. Personally I think it’s a nice touch, but I don’t really look at these things ever.

 

So what was inside my box? Well here they are:

  1. Corn Potarge – a corn snack that tastes like creamy corn soupDSCN4579.JPG
  2. Umai Dama (chocolate) -a airy puff that is filled with chocolateDSCN4569.JPG
  3. Bikkuri Man Chocolate 8-a wafer snack with a chocolate filling that comes with a special cardDSCN4573.JPG
  4. Donut Biscuit-a vanilla flavoured crunchy bite sized biscuit that has a sugar coatingDSCN4568.JPG
  5. Pokemon Chewing Candy (pineapple)-a chewy pineapple flavour candy that features a Pokemon character on each wrapper. DSCN4566.JPG
  6. Pucchibi (Soda)-small blue chewy candy that is soda flavourDSCN4564.JPG
  7. Kajiriccho Soft Candy (Hip Hop Berry)-a chewy candy that tastes like soda and berries with small little pieces in the middle. Kind of reminds me of the cable sweets that you can get from pick and mix sweets.DSCN4565.JPG
  8. Texas Corn (Fried Chicken)-crispy corn snack that tastes like chickenDSCN4576
  9. Yawaraka Yawaraka Soft Candy (cola)-a soft chewy cola flavored candyDSCN4578.JPG
  10. Giant Caplico (Usa Pyon Vanilla)-a ice cream cone filled with two types of foamy chocolate.DSCN4571.JPG
  11. Crisp Choco (Hot Cake Maple)-crunchy corn flake snack that tastes like maple syrup.DSCN4562
  12. Tanoshi Ramenya-San- a DIY kit to make dumplings and ramen candyDSCN4570.JPG
  13. Niginigi O-Sushiya San Gummy-sushi shaped gummy candy in apple, banana and lemon flavourDSCN4574
  14. Fit’s Link (No Limit Mint)- chewing gum that is minty and provides freshness that is suppose to last for 50 minutes DSCN4567.JPG

Overall to me this box was worth the price that it is since it came with many news items that I enjoyed and might not have necessary been able to purchase in the UK. The items were pretty big size for some of the products, and had sweet & savoury items. This was good as it was fun to share with my family and try new things. The box had free shipping, which means you only pay for the box and NO UK custom tax fees. This was a good thing, since personally I’m always worried about having to pay extra for Customs tax fee. Wished I had bought the bigger box now, since the Pokemon Soda looks pretty good. Maybe I will try another box or try another subscription company. Anyways hope this inspires you to try a couple of items or the subscription box. Great gift for those that love Japanese candy and snacks or want to try something new.  You can purchase by visiting the website at www.wowbox.mogmog.us or by clicking on the word WOWBOX

Hope you have a nice day!