Book Review: Daughter by Jane Shemilt

By | January 20, 2015

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I intended to read only the first chapter of daughter then move on to other first chapters of other new books I have in my collections. The story was so intriguing from the very first few pages and I knew I didn’t have to read the other first chapters from the other books, this one was what I wanted to read. Again, it was a book I finished in almost one day, resisting the urge to flip through to the last page and discover the fate of the missing daughter. Read more »

A Wonderful NYC Sovenier from Jacquies

By | January 20, 2015

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Do you still bring back souvenirs for your friends and family when you travel abroad?

I love travel souvenirs, or soogha as we call them in the Kuwaiti dialect. I love receiving them of course and I enjoy picking them out when I roam shops and markets of different foreign lands. It doesn’t have to be something extravagant or expensive, sometimes a quirky fridge magnet or a bar of exotic chocolate would do the trick just fine and clearly spell out the exact message you want to convey with a travel souvenir: I was thinking about you while I was away. Sadly some people upon receiving their “soogha” these days would sigh and glare at it miserably, viewing it as both a debt they have to repay and a challenge they’d have to overdue, something that kills the entire spirit of the soogha and perhaps why many people do not bother anymore. Read more »

Visiting Bletchley Park, Home of the Codebreakers

By | January 15, 2015

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If you have been to see the movie “The Imitation Game” recently then you’d know exactly what Bletchley Park is all about, its where parts of the movie were filmed btw. If not, then let me tell you about my visit to one of the world’s best kept secrets: Bletchley Park, home of the code breakers. A place that was well hidden all these years even the local residents thought it was an psychiatric asylum. The park was neglected in later years and was about to be demolished and turned into a shopping mall but thankfully it was saved and restored and opened for visitors to explore. Read more »

Choccywoccydoodah’s Hot Chocolate, London

By | January 14, 2015

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Because I’ve taken quite a liking to hot chocolate this winter I’ve been drinking nothing but the biggest steaming cups topped with the most voluptuous dollops of whipped cream of hot chocolate. I was in London and I decided to go and try the most highly acclaimed cups of melted cocoa and milk around the capital, and one of the first that I got on my list was Choccywoccydoodah’s hot chocolate.  Read more »

That Contagious Smile…

By | January 14, 2015

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This year I didn’t write down a list of “resolutions”. I’ve often found that my mind tends to file away whatever I’ve put on a list for “later”. Maybe because whatever it is on a list is saved there somewhere hence it will never be lost as an idea, does that make any sense? Maybe not, but I do realise now that if I want something done, I better start doing it right away or else it will stay as an entry on a list under a pile of a hundred other lists somewhere. And that is exactly why I’m writing this post up, because I made a resolution in December of last year and I’ve decided to go ahead with it right away. The Resolution? Smile for no reason at strangers.  Read more »

Book Review: The Book of You by Claire Kendal

By | January 12, 2015

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Another book, another debut, and also another gripping-from-page-one read that I couldn’t put down. I have a new reading system to determine what I want to read, I get a collection of books and read the first chapter of each then decide where to go from there. Only when I picked up The Book of You, and it was the first in the collection, I finished chapter one and continued on forgetting all about the other first chapters that were waiting to be read. Read more »

Breakfast and lunch at Mado Kuwait

By | January 12, 2015

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Back in December the much loved and very popular Turkish cafe Mado finally opened its doors in Kuwait. The opening followed a long period of anticipation on instagram with many devoted followers asking about the opening date. I was travelling when it did open, early December 2014, and I’ve heard a lot of mixed reviews about it all of them advising me me to wait a bit until they get on their feet and ran things smoothly. Read more »

Book Review: The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

By | January 7, 2015

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The debut novel by Jessie Burton caught my eye with two things: the patterned wallpaper-like cover and the fact that it was placed on a table with a card declaring it 2014’s best read in the bookstore! Read more »

Dinner at Princi Pizzeria London

By | January 7, 2015

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 I opened up my blog intending to write a long post about something, but I was overcome by an overwhelming urge to recount a fabulous dinner I had when I was just in London. It was a long and busy day in mid-December of last year where I had barely nothing to eat all day. I was tired and the weather was freezing cold and needed a good wholesome meal. By dinner time I wouldn’t have minded dining on old stale fries but with what was left of my energy I made my way towards Wardour St. in Soho where Princi Pizzeria is located. I’ve passed by Princi before but never managed to dine there though it generated quite a few raving reviews.  Read more »

Hello 2015!

By | January 3, 2015

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Well, 2014 did pass by in a blink! The fact that it is actually the year 2015 refuses to sink in still with me.

2014 was, well, decent. I got so many good things to be grateful for yet it wasn’t all good and dandy. I’ve grown a little bit up, that’s for sure, and now that I realise I’m 34 years-old I tend to panic a bit, I’m feeling that I’m somehow running out of time, youth time that is, but that entire age paranoia could eat up this entire post.

At the beginning of 2015, I know one fact for sure, I’m a mess.  Read more »

Movie Review: The Hobbit The Battle of the Five Armies

By | December 14, 2014

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If you know me personally or have been hanging around my blog for a while then you’d know that I’m a crazed LOTR and Hobbit fan and was looking so much towards the third and final movie of the Hobbit trilogy, and also the last Peter Jackson movie about Middle Earth. I’ve even set up a counter, an alarm reminder, and basically waiting, rather impatiently, for the movie to pick up where DOS have left off.  Read more »

The Obsolete Cassette Tapes of Old

By | November 29, 2014

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You know I’ve never dreamed there would come a day when I think about cassette tapes and render them obsolete. When you grow up using something and you take it for granted, somehow you think it will always be there till the end of time. The other day I was tidying up around the apartment when I came upon a collection of my old cassette tapes and my heart skipped a beat. Not only have I stopped using those tapes, I’ve forgotten all about them as well!  Read more »

Is it OK to Eavesdrop on People Discussing You?

By | November 27, 2014

The other day I was just walking in a busy place, heading towards somewhere, minding my own business when a couple walking nearby began discussing something animatedly. Normally I wouldn’t listen in to other people’s conversations as its non of my business, but this time something really caught my attention and made my head involuntarily snap towards the chatting couple, they were discussing “Dandemra”.  Read more »

Book Review: Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

By | November 26, 2014

When I want to describe how I felt reading this book, using the word “gripping” would be an understatement. No, hooked won’t do it either, I guess my mood was rather bordering on obsessed for I couldn’t let go from paragraph one. The story is grim and dark, just like its title, the state of mind of Libby Day, the 30-something grown up who survived the massacre of her entire family at age sever then testified against her older brother sending him to jail, is both compelling? and disturbing. Nothing is sugar coated, everything that can go wrong in a person’s life does indeed happen. Read more »

The Freshest Cherry Tomato Pasta Ever!

By | November 26, 2014

A while back I received an invitation from Elevation burgers to celebrate the opening of their newest branch in Bidaa area. Elevation’s invitation was quite different this time, for it arrived with a tiny cherry tomato shrub with little green cherry tomatoes on the branches, all waiting to ripen up and be eaten! I thought it was a fake one first, living in a country with a dessert climate like Kuwait’s means meeting fruit bearing greens and shrubs are a cause of wonders, therefore you can understand how thrilled I was at the sight of this teeny tiny shrub. Read more »

Visiting the Kuwait Book Fair 2014

By | November 25, 2014

I initially thought of skipping this years book fair for the number of banned books and novels have risen noticeably from the previous years. But then I couldn’t. A book fair is something that resembles a Disney Land to me, just being nearby and filled with endless books and reading materials is haunting. I resisted for a few days then succumbed to my urges on Saturday morning when I woke up early – and I never wake up early- and went out the door without breakfast just to wander the halls decked with books. Read more »

Smoked Pecan Cheesecake from Dallah Bakery

By | November 25, 2014

Have I told you before that I’m not a cheesecake person?

I’m not. I’m not the kind of person who’d go gaga over a picture of slice of cheesecake. I’m not really a fan of the dense cheesy heavy centre sandwiched between a crunchy crust and a liquid topping. If there is nothing else on the table I’d eat a forkful or two just fine, but I wouldn’t necessary lose sleep craving cheesecakes and wishing I had a slice or two to wolf down. I can live without cheesecakes. Read more »

Counting Down the Days for The Hobbit

By | November 23, 2014

Ever since I’ve walked out from the cinema after watching The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug movie and I’ve been in some sort of daze. On one hand, I loved DOS so much I wanted to see it again -and I did, several times-. On the other hand, I wanted to continue watching the movie, or rather the third movie that was named There and Back again and was set for a July 2014 release then pushed back to December 2014 and renamed into The Battle of Five Armies. I wanted to watch the last movie so bad, an entire year of waiting seemed like torture. I began counting down the months, one by one, and because life goes by in a blink there I was, with only one month left to go and now counting down the DAYS! No more counting of months, its merely a matter of days, until it was finally time to watch the last of the Hobbit and bid it farewell.  Read more »

Book Review: and the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini

By | November 13, 2014

I had been fortunate enough to have the chance to reserve and collect this book pre-release back in 2013. However, I always kept it on my shelves as a treat for when I was really down and needed something really good to read, for I knew that whatever is penned by Khaled Hosseini must be worth reading. Last week I realise my stack of good books to read next is dangerously depleted so I’ve decided it was time to read The Mountains Echoed. From the first chapter, from the first page, from the first paragraph, I was hooked. Read more »

My Personalised Ring

By | November 10, 2014

I sat on my dining room table, looking at a beautiful acrylic box with my blog’s name on it surrounded by red and white hearts. The box arrived to me as a gift from a local new business, @Special_2you, who specialise in personalising jewellery and gift boxes with your name or whatever phrase you feel like. Inside the box, personalised with my blog name, was the actual gift… Read more »

Recipe: Baked Eggs in Chapati Bread Cups

By | November 10, 2014

Let me tell you the story of how this recipe came to me: I was watching the Food Network on TV, this amazing South African Chef Siba Mtongana was on cooking brunch for friends and decided to serve something called “Cape Town Tarts”. She lined a muffin tin with slices of parma ham and topped them with cheese and veggies then added eggs, baked them, et voila she had little cups of baked eggs to serve for brunch! It looked so easy breezy, a wonderful way to cook eggs especially for people who didn’t know – like myself- and I thought I could recreate the recipe for my husband using turkey slices instead of parma ham. Then I wished I was able to eat baked eggs like that with chopped mushrooms and coloured capsicums. Then I decided some sort of bread instead of Turkey might work just fan, perhaps some filo pastry, and I got up to the kitchen to experiment. Read more »

James St. Chocolate Cooking Class, Brisbane

By | November 9, 2014

The very last activity in Brisbane on day 6 of our #Room753 Bloggers Trip to Queensland itinerary was to go to a desserts cooking class! Its no secret that I’m a fan of cooking, chocolate, sugar, desserts, and everything related to food that is and a chocolate desserts cooking class would, to me, be one of my ideas of having a good and relaxing time.  We do have cooking schools who give out cooking classes in Kuwait but its different when you are abroad. I remember a coffee preparation class I’ve wanted to go to in Dubai but never had the time, and when in the UK I’m always a bit intimidated and would chicken out at the last minute. Read more »

Dinner at Mado Turkish Restaurant, Brisbane

By | November 9, 2014

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Our very first dinner in Australia while on the #Room753 Bloggers Trip to Queensland was in the Turkish restaurant Mado. I’ve heard a lot about Mado and remembered clearly that when I looked the restaurant up it did state they had a branch in Brisbane, Australia so we knew we wanted to dine there. Read more »

Book Review: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

By | November 3, 2014

To be frank I’ve only picked up this book when I knew it was the winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction 2014. I don’t usually enjoy crime and mystery and when I read the description on the back, with the word “underworld crime scene”, I almost put it back into the shelf but I had to see what made that novel Pulitzer Prize worthy. Since I’ve imposed the rule of giving up on a book after finishing and not liking the first chapter I consoled myself by my very own rule, only one chapter and if I don’t like it I will put it down.  Read more »

Breakfast at Cafe Bazza – Soon in Dubai

By | November 3, 2014

In 2011 a new cafe by the name of Bazza opened up in Kuwait, serving traditional Kuwaiti dishes in a modernised yet still time-time-honored setting and atmosphere. I was a fan of Cafe Bazza from the very start, the attention to detail is evident in everything: the menu, the story on the menu, the sound track, the selection of dishes on the menu, even the art on the walls. I am a particular fan of their breakfast in genera and their meatless maraq bamiya especially. If I had friends visiting from abroad who wanted to have a taste of Kuwait, I’d take them to Bazza, no questions asked. Read more »