Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Student Conferences

Tonight, Kay had a student conference which is like an open house for parents. The students present and display the work they have accomplished since the beginning of the school year for the parents. We, as the parents, are to listen and ask questions about their work and what they have learned. I was clearly disappointed with Kay's math test marks and somewhat disappointed in that she seemed to be doing the min.effort on her school work. HonHon was suppose to come with me but he was caught up in errands and did not make it back in time to go with us. After our conference, we headed over to Shiro for dinner because it is one of my fave. Japanese restaurants in Vancouver and it's close to home! Their menu selection is not huge but they have the best fresh wild salmon sashimi and very yummy sushi pieces. After dinner, we hung out on the couch in front of my new TV. It was a nice evening together as a family and it's feels like it's been a very long time since we all hung out on the couch. Actually, it has been! Four months to be exact. HonHon is heading back to Taipei in one and half days. It's going to be quiet around here.....

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Choir Festival

Tonight, Kay was part of a choral festival because she is in a choir club at her elementary school. This event is held every year for about a week and all the schools in Vancouver participate in this event. This is also the first time in over 2 years that HonHon has been able to attend or take part in one of Kay's school activities. It's tough trying to make it to these events when he is working in Taiwan and flies to Vancouver every 3 or 4 months. Tonight was quite an exciting night for Kay and she was very happy to have her dad in the crowds. The concert ran 30 minutes late and although it was very entertaining to hear and watch all these talented choirs, I was getting a bit antsy in my seat. Those auditorium chairs are not at all comfy! Plus no leg room!! Kay and her group did an amazing show and it was a real treat to have her dad there. We decided to take her to McDonald's for dinner as a treat and it was also passed dinner time. It was a nice evening together as a family. Gosh, I really do miss those.....

Photos to come......

Friday, February 23, 2007

Vancouver Art Gallery

Today, we headed over to the Vancouver Art Gallery to check out Fred Herzog's Vancouver Photographs. It was a very interesting exhibition and to see what the city of Vancouver looked like in the 50s and 60s is quite a treat. I recommend everyone should go and check out this exhibition. It is a good idea to expose Kay to more culture and I think one of these days, I will have to take Kay to the art gallery. It would be good for her to take in a little more culture and to know there are other interesting things to do besides sitting on the computer all day/night! We finished the art gallery sooner than we anticipated so we lunched at Kitto Japanese Restaurant on Granville. The restaurant was pretty packed even though the lunch rush was over. We had a quick bite and with a little time to spare before my 3.30 division meeting at the office (yes I am on vacation but am a very dedicated employee and it's good to know what is going on with the changes in our division), we headed over to The Bay at Pacific Centre to look for black tights for myself and shoes for HonHon. I didn't end up buying any tights because I could not justify spending over $20 on black tights! But I did find some shoes for myself and HonHon! Jessica Simpson shoes are available at The Bay and the onesI picked up were part of her new collection. Very cute, the heel being the very best part! Although I honestly didn't think I could get into these and they did not look too comfortable, I was a little shocked to find these shoes in fact did fit my feet and bonus, did not cut the blood circulation. I have a huge shoe problem. After shopping, I headed over to the office for the meeting while HonHon went over to Chapters on Robson to wait for me. There is a cocktail reception after the meeting at the Hyatt starting at 4.30 but I decided to skip this one. I am not for one to turn down a free drink but HonHon is in town and this event is an employee only reception besides I am sure I could live without a glass of red wine for one night! The meeting went pretty well a lot of updates and changes going through our division but all is good. Hopefully, this coming year, our group can make the target numbers. After the meeting, I headed over to Chapters to find HonHon and pick Kay up a collection of books. Gosh, books can be quite pricey even with my member discount! I could not help but buy another umbrella because with a purchase of $25 dollars, you can pick up a pretty nice umbrella for $5.00! A savings of $14.99!! We headed home and to my surprise, the traffic on Cambie Street was not too congested. It was a nice day out and kind of nice having a "date" with HonHon.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

More shopping

I got my birthday/christmas present today! Sharp 32" LCD TV at Best Buy! It's very pretty and although I was shopping for a Sony, it was decided that the Sharp one is a much better LCD quality than the Sony 32". Can't wait to set it up and watch my DVDs on there. I am also considering HDTV because the high def is so much nicer than regular cable....

After picking up the TV, we headed over to IKEA to find a TV stand for my new TV. I was planning on ordering a custom TV stand from Shilo Living (where I purchased my cubed book case) but decided I did not want to spend over $300 on a basic TV stand. I bought one at IKEA for $99 and it's not the prettiest TV stand but it works. Plus the main attraction is the TV not the stand.

We headed over to Tropika for dinner because I had a coupon and it was dinner out night. Slightly disappointed and very expensive. Not very authentic, more Chinese than Singaporean or Malay, although we have always been aware of it but it was a bit of a surprise to see the final total on the bill even with my coupon discount! Dinner didn't stay in my tummy though, much too greasy for me! The yummiest dish on our table: Tropika Homestyle Chicken.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Metrotown Shopping

Today, HonHon and I headed over to Metrotown Centre because he needed to check the mail at his parent's Burnaby condo as I have not been checking the mail in the past couple of weeks. After checking the mail and the condo, we decided to head over to Superstore to pick up a few items and walk around the shopping centre. I ended up picking up some really great deals at Bedo. Check them out!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Birthday and Chinese New Year Dinner

Tonight, we celebrated my brother's 28th birthday and Chinese New Year with my mom, grandma and auntie. HonHon, Kay and I headed over to the restaurant on Fraser street to make sure our table was reserved and ready for us. But once we got there, there seemed to be a slight problem with our reservation. Apparently, the manager wrote down the wrong time, 7.00pm for 8 instead of 8.00pm for 7 people. At first, he told me we would have to wait for a table and I was a little bit upset as I was starting to get hungry. Also, it's not my fault that they mixed up our reservation! Mom had called earlier in the week to confirm our reservation and preorder a chinese duck. Since there was a little bit of a mix up with our reservation, I decided I had better call my mom to let her know what was going on. I guess the manager could see how upset I was on the phone because the minute I was off, he told me our table would be ready shortly. IMO, the restaurant was nicer than last year's place but typical Chinese Seafood Restaurant. Once my mom and grandma arrived, they placed our dinner order as my brother, HonHon nor I could figure out what to order. The only dish I did not like was the lamb stew and I thought I would have liked the oyster dish but did not realize it was dried oysters not fresh so I didn't really like that one either. Overall, it was a really nice night and I'm happy to have HonHon with us tonight.

Photo Collage from our dinner.


HonHon is back in town!! And without disappointment, he brought back presents!! Not as many as I hoped for, leaving behind a couple of items in Taipei but he did bring back what I had asked for which included: a Hello Kitty CD/DVD case and the pink cd/dvd cotton envelopes. Included in the presents were souvenirs from his business trips, cookies from Germany, a mini lamp and Burj Al Arab (the Best Hotel in the World) key chain from Dubai, more Hello Kitty items and a huge heart gummy for Kay.

A very yucky and icky day to come home to, pouring rain all morning and afternoon. After picking HonHon from the airport, we headed over to Michele Cake House to pick up my brother's birthday cake. There are some traffic changes on No. 3 Road in Richmond and I was confused and a little bit lost in looking for the cake shop. After picking up the cake, we headed home so he could take a shower, eat a little something before taking his nap. He is still sleeping! He's been out since 1.00pm and our dinner is at 8.00pm, I hope that will be enough for a nap! It's always so hard on his first day due to the jetlag and time change but I'm sure he'll be a little more rested after this nap than no nap. I hope he can sleep tonight!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Homemade Dumplings

Today, Kay and I headed over to my mom's to help her with some grocery shopping. Every Chinese New Year, mom makes homemade "lo bak gao" - Chinese New Year Turnip Cake and it takes a lot of work to make this very yummy dish. I brought over my food processor to chop up the lo bak - turnip and I love that machine. It took me about 5 minutes to shred 2 1/2 pounds of lo bak which used to take me an hour by hand. This was my mom's second batch because the first batch was given to me and my aunt. Although I did not stay to finish the lo bak gao with my mom, Kay and I did help put together the chinese pork dumplings. This also took a lot of work and I can't imagine one person doing it on their own! We had to chop up the chinese mushrooms, watercress, dried scallop and hand mix it into the ground pork. After mixing it throughly, we dropped a tablespoon of the mix into a wonton wrapper and seal it with egg. The three of us did a batch of about 100 pieces in just under 45 minutes! We did get a chance to sample them and boy are they so super yummy! Much better than the frozen ones! As we were making them, like an assembly line, I was scooping a tablespoon onto a plate, my mom put the mix in and sealed it, and Kay filed them one by one onto a chopping board. We also got to take some home and Kay had them for dinner. Very yummy. Now I know how to make them and there are so many different ways to make them. Next time, we are going to use cilantro and chinese mushrooms!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Gong Hay Fat Choi!

May your new year be filled with prosperity and good fortune!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Last Day and New Cut

Today is my last day before my vacation and boy was it ever a tough and rushed day! I have a whole week off because HonHon is coming to Vancouver!! Yeah!!

Our division is currently being reorganized, a discipline is moving onto another floor (we are running out of space on our side). Two of the engineers whom are moving, they are on business trips and the other one retired so Val and I had to pack up their offices. You would think it wouldn't be too hard to pack up an office or two or three but if you have ever worked with engineers, you know they are pack rats! They must keep everything because one day they may have a use for it or may need it to reference a future project. I must have burned a zillion calories today just by packing up these offices. I spent the rest of the afternoon (right after lunch) helping Val pack and some of the things we found in the desks are not bloggable. Nothing too gross (well maybe a little bit gross) but let's just say after this, I would never allow anyone to pack up my office if I had to move, I'd be darn sure I'm in the office or have packed up before I left for vacation.

After finally finishing off the offices, I had to get my stuff together for Val as she would be helping out with my duties while I am away for the week. Not much to do but I didn't have much time to finish off and left the office a little bit later than I had planned to. I had a 4.30pm hair appointment with a new hair stylist and she is located right off the Cambie Street bridge. The last couple of weeks I have been taking the Main street bus up to 20th and walking from Main to Cambie which is faster than trying to walk to my bus stop, get through downtown traffic, trying to cross a single lane bridge and Broadway, it seems to take almost an hour trying to get home on my regular bus route. I decided it would def. be faster taking the Burrad skytrain to Main Street, catching the bus up Main and walking down 20th. I was right, I now get home by 5.00pm where as if I was to take my regular route, I could be coming home any time after 5.30pm. I should have left the office at 4.00 but didn't get out of there until 4.06pm and although it doesn't seem that much later, it is as I was not planning to catch the bus over the bridge, I had decided to catch the skytrain to Stadium and walk over the Cambie street bridge. I walked over the bridge in record time (15 minutes instead of 25) and just made it to my 4.30 appointment!

Emily (hair stylist) did an awesome job! It was super fast, fastest I've ever had a hair cut and she cut off exactly how much I asked for. No frills or up selling, just a hair cut and very friendly conversation. I am super happy with my cut and def. found my new hair stylist. No pressure to come back in 4 weeks for a trim and she didn't try to convince me to colour my hair. I wish I had a photo but I don't. I will be heading out for Chinese New Year/Warren's Birthday dinner on Monday so I will post photos from that evening!

Thursday, February 15, 2007


Today, I met up with Jas for lunch as we haven't seen each other in weeks. She noticed right away that I had lost some weight, she said my face thinned out. Sweet! All these salad lunches/dinners are working!! Plus all the walking I am doing is helping too, I bet! We met up for a quick bite in the food fair, she introduced me to the Salad Loop and I was able to make a yummy salad for less than $4.00!! Plus there are so many items and I didn't even imagine what I could add to my salad. I really love fresh spinach and this is now my current choice for a salad (I have been eating Spring Greens for a month and half!). As we were catching up, she told me she wanted to head over to Tiffany's to look at a charm bracelet. I agreed! I have been searching (online) for a Tiffany ring. To my surprise (or not!), I ended up walking out with a pretty blue bag :) I had decided to buy a Tiffany ring (a new item not even available online yet!) and she (the more reasonable one) decided to wait until payday to buy herself a charm bracelet. Now I own a little piece of Tiffany and it's so beautiful. I decided it is a Valentine Gift for me :) Beautiful, click to see.

PS: We also headed over to Louis Vuitton to see if the heart purse was available but it did not come in and there was a very long waiting list. I decided not to put my name on the list because I would be very disappointed if they came in and I didn't get one! That happened to me once and I have never put my name on the waiting list again. I did find something I would love to have and I did scare Jas a bit but in the end I walked out without a brown bag.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy [Heart] Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!
It's never fun when your love one is not here to celebrate this day with you but HonHon has a pretty darn good excuse and he better bring me something back real nice! IMO, this day is marked as a Hallmark holiday and can be a little bit overrated but I decided to go with the holiday and start a new tradition for Kay. I had spoken to a few people in the office and these ladies have been given or giving V'day gifts to their daughters and sons, usually it's jewellery for girls and t-shirt or a new toy for the boys. I thought it would be nice to start Kay off with a lovely necklace, something reasonable but pretty and not too over the top because she is only 12 years old. Lots of people were doing their last minute shopping and me, being one, was in a massive panic in trying to find the right gift for my special baby girl. Lucky for me, Winners had this beautiful sterling silver necklace with a pendant, the pendant consisted of two angels holding onto an aquamarine stone, very beautiful and perfect my little angel. After picking up the gift (and a cute Hello Kitty V'day card), I headed home to pick up Kay so we could head over to Boston Pizza for heart shaped pizza. Kay decided to invite her best friends, Tyler and Olivia to dinner. I didn't mind as long as their parents gave the permission. The kids are really good kids, slightly mischievous but very well mannered and behaved kids. We were at the Boston Pizza and there were lots of families there with screaming kids running around (or crawling on the floor!) UGH... with all the kids around me screaming, I felt like I really needed a Bellini but did not order one because I was in the company of three kids, two of them not being my own! Boston Pizza was super busy and it took 25 minutes for our pizza to reach our table and to my surprise, the pizzas did come out heart shaped! Very cool. Throughout the evening, the girls were really bugging poor Tyler. Girls can be pretty mean and they did some funny things to Tyler like dumping sugar and Parmesan cheese in his water, flicking him with their fingers tips and they were all into tickling each other. Very funny kids! I told him this was easy and it only gets worse when you get older. After dinner, I took the kids out for gelato and they were playing double dare at the parlour. Daring each other to do silly things like keep the freezer door open until the buzzer goes off! OMG, what a bunch of clowns. After a couple of hours with them, I was ready to send them home. All in all, it was a great Valentine's Day and Kay is a really good girl.

Caught some good moments on my camera even though it was hard to catch them as they were clowning around!

{Click to enlarge}

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Date with Leo and Robyn

{Click photo to enlarge}

This afternoon, I went for a walk with Leo and Robyn! I haven't seen them in months and although I have left numerous voice messages and emails, she has been quite a busy lady. Taking part time brokerage classes, being an at home mom to an infant and a teenager, quitting her job at the insurance firm and trying to get in some quality time for herself. But as luck would have it, I bumped into her and Leo at Thai Away last night. Last night, I had dropped Kay off at Douglas Community Centre (she had a pre-tween Valentine's dance), before heading over to pick up some yummy thai takeaway (my one night dine out for this week) as I planned to have a quiet night (or couple of hours!) on the couch in front of my Friday Night TV. But I had decided to stay in and catch up with Robyn as she was just finishing up but stayed with me to keep me company while I ate my dinner. After dinner, we made our way back but before going home, she needed to pick up some coolers at the liquor store and some soup for her teenage daughter, sick at home with the flu. As we parted out ways, we made plans to meet for today to go for a walk and to catch up more on each other.

Lucky for us, it was a beautiful day and I got some beautiful shots of Leo. We decided to walk around Douglas Park a couple of times, before settling on a dry bench in the sun. Gosh, I can't believe how much Leo has grown! He's like a little boy now, not the little quiet baby I remember him to be! Such a gorgeous boy and what a cutie pie! He is super cute when he smiles and looks up to you with his beautiful eyes. Awww, I almost almost want to have another one.. He is also very snuggly and sits comfortably in your arms, like a teddy bear. Love it. It was great spending time with them and I hope to see them more often but if they decide to move to Richmond, we will def. have to set "play/lunch dates". I wish them luck in finding a house large enought and within reasonable rent price to fit the lives of 2 adults, 2 kids, 1 dog and 2 cats!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Babysitting Katie

Tonight, Kay and I had a great time babysitting little Katie! But I did forget how much work it takes to care for a little one. Katie was a sweetheart and a very easy to please baby! No problems at all although it took the two sets of hands to put her to bed. I am rethinking my plan to get pregnant! I don't think I am quite ready to have two little ones running around.....

Thanks Erin and Geoff for having us over for dinner (and boy what a fabulous dinner it was!) and letting us babysit Katie!! Any time you need us, you just let us know, we wouldn't turn down a night with Katie!!!

Friday, February 02, 2007

My Beef with Translink-Canada Line Construction

OMG! The already very congested traffic on Cambie Street is now even more backed up and more congested because of the Canada Line Construction. The traffic pattern changes on the bridge has caused some serious traffic jams. How lovely, we are going to be in a traffic jam for the next 2 years....

  • Wednesday - I did not walk through my front door until just after 6.00pm. I stood at the bus stop for almost 40 minutes, 3 buses (which were not completely full) passed by without stopping at our Cambie/Georgia - CBC Building bus stop.
  • Thursday - an already stressful work day to be topped off with the new traffic pattern changes on the Cambie Street Bridge, 3 lanes merging into 1 (on the bridge) with the 2nd avenue exit being blocked off, I left the office around 4.45pm, I did not arrive home until a little after 6.00pm (regularly a 20 minute commute or 30 - 40 minute commute since the construction).
  • Friday - assuming the traffic would be even worse off today than yesterday, I was prepared to walk home from downtown, I had my running shoes with me. I took the skytrain to Stadium station and started walking from BC Stadium to Cambie / 20th, the walk took me about only 30 minutes and I would have been home 5 minutes earlier if it was not for the very messy and screwed up pedestrian side walk on Cambie / 12th avenue! Oh well, life sucks esp. during the "short term pain for long term gain" skytrain. On another note, I had no idea how many people walked from downtown and back into the city, it is so much better for you! Traffic on the bridge was not too backed up but I think I still made it home faster than taking the bus up to 22nd (which is now where my bus stop is located!). Final time (walking though my front door): 5.20pm.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

A Fashion Prayer


Who art in Holts.

Hallowed be thy shoes.

Thy Prada come,

Thy shopping done,

On Robson, as it is in Paris.

Give us this day, our Visa Gold

And forgive us our balance

As we forgive those,

Who charge us interest,

Lead us not into Wal-Mart

And deliver us from Sears,

For thine is the Chanel

The Gaultier, and the Versace,

For Dolce & Gabbana...