Friday, February 6, 2009

Back from California

Hello all! I am so glad to be back in my normal routine again....traveling just makes me really tired these days. And it's been so long since I last made a post...I'm lost for words, haha. :D After CNY, it's been crazy busy for me and my hubby, getting ready for the trip was alot of work. And even while we were in California, it was mostly work and little play. Lot's of things to settle, house, bank, school for kids etc. :-P But it was good to see my house and my Bay area friends again after 2 years...very little seems to have changed, well except for the children! Somehow when you see other people's kids after a period of time, they tend to grow much bigger then yours?! :) Of course, you don't see them everyday. ;)

There were a few of my favorite eateries in California that I like to mention in this post. First is a Ramen place in Milpitas call Maru Ichi. I remember my family and I used to frequent this place twice to three times a month while we were in Bay Area. They serve several different soup base ramen, personally I like their Shouyu Ramen the best, not too salty and their noodles have good texture. The left picture shows Kuro Ramen, which is their house colour looking soup, got a spicy kick to it.
It was really good slurping the hot noodle soup on that very cold and wet night there....brought back quite a bit of memories too. ;)

On another nice morning, we drove to Los Gatos to enjoy one of my favorite burger joints, Main Street Burgers. I find their burgers pretty good, toasted buns, fresh vegetables and a juicy patty....and not forgetting their sweet potatoes fries and onion rings...delish!Sorry couldn't resist taking a bite first. ;)

Next stop, we went to another favorite spot in Los Gatos downtown, a pastry & confectionery store call Fleur de Cocoa. I remember during birthdays and special occasions, we'll order a cake from here. They serve no ordinary cakes, I would describe it as "heavenly" or "out of this world"...seriously. But the con side is it's quite $$$$....if you know what I mean.
But too bad we were too stuffed from the burgers that we didn't get any pastry. :-P *sob*

Our stay in Bay Area was so a pretty short one and we didn't get to all of our favorite eating perhaps next time I'll post it when I get back ...for the benefit of my friends in Malaysia and Singapore. :)

Regrettably, I was unable to make a Valentine's Day post this time, being away and all, not to mention I'm still suffering from jet-lag and common cold. I guess I just need more time to settle back and of course rest.
My family and I have actually spent Valentine's Day in California Disneyland...the happiest place of earth?! Even though it's not our first time there, we decided to stayed in Disney's Grand Californian Hotel again, being it's close proximity to the park and the great hotel services it provide. :)

On the evening when we arrive @ the Disney hotel, we went dinning @ this Italian restaurant call Naples Ristorante and Pizzeria. We were famished when were finally seated and we ordered whatever that sounded good to us.
The food came fairly quickly and we dive in straight away. I ordered three cheese ravioli with tiger shrimps and my hubby ordered tangelini with lobster in cream sauce. The kids had pepperoni pizza and meatball spaghetti.
I have to say the food was okay, not too fantastic....a little too salty for my taste buds. However my girl's pepperoni pizza taste okay.

The following day we had a lunch "date" with the Disney princesses! You hear me right...well, technically the princesses just come to your dinning table to talk to you and take photos etc. Well, it's more then you can imagine what it means to my girls! They were totally excited about it the minute we told them.

The lunch took place @ this place call Ariel's Grotto. Thank goodness we got to seat indoors because it was quite cold that day. The first thing we did was to meet Ariel herself, we took pictures and were quickly seated down and ordered our food. In the mist of waiting for our food, all the Disney princesses started to come out one by one, first was Cinderella, then Aurora (Sleeping Beauty), then Belle (Beauty & the Beast) and last Snow White. My girls couldn't settle down and eat, because they kept looking and waiting for the Princesses to come to our table!
They girls really had a wonderful time meeting their favorite princesses and this will give them a lot of sweet memories. So if you have a little girl that adores princesses, don't'll so great to see that sparkle in their eyes and that smile on their face...;)

In fact the food has improved quite a lot since 2 years ago when we visited them. For my main course, I have Santa Maria Style Tri-tip, which is slow roasted over rock salt and smoked with red oak wood and serve with Chedder-herb mashed potatoes and with some seasonal vegtables.
While my hubby got Cioppino which include lobster claw, pink scallops, red fish, green-lip(no idea what's that), mussels and shrimp, plus Bibao chorizo (type of sausage) bathed in a robust fire-roasted tomato broth.The girls have thir usual kids meal, pasta and fresh fruits on the side.
As for desert, a selection of yummy pastry which includes seahorse lava cake, chocolate-chip strips, cheesecake tarts with raspberries, s'more chcoclate bites and a white chcoclate conch shell of garden fresh berries!Everyone was satisfied and happy after this meal...and my girls asked are they gonna have dinner with the Princess later?! Hahaha!!

For the rest of the stay we concentrated on having loads of fun in the park, taking most of the rides and watching the Fantasmic show and the Aladdin Musical show (a MUST if you visit Disneyland), which was so entertaining even though we know the story so well. And again my girls get to meet yet another princess, princess Jasmine of course. ;)

Even though it was really cold, we still enjoyed ourselves totally...and stayed in the park up to the wee hours of the night. Every night it ends with this wonderful fireworks which lights up the entire sky with different sparks of magical!! It's really hard to describe it to you, but it really took my breath away watching the of the best I've seen so far. ;)

I have loaded a minute of the fireworks video from my Cannon camera....not the best view but still can show you a sneak peak of that wonderful 15 minutes long fireworks show ....

Overall, I had a great trip back to California, but again I feel great too to be back home safe with my family and back to my usual routine. :) So looking forward to more baking in my kitchen too! So stay tune my friends!

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