Saturday, November 30, 2013

Farmer Market, Food, Friends, Shopping, beautiful Dubai… Happy time!

What a lovely weekend… Loving the amazing weather and happy vibe of the season.
Friday morning strolling around the Ripe Foodie Friday Market was a real treat. A little pleasure for the whole family. Have you been? It's now set up every Friday at Safa Park, gate 5,  close to The Archive café. 



Ripe has become a bit of an institution now in Dubai, from the early success of the original Ripe Box concept to a growing number of weekly Food and Craft markets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, a sweet little Ripe Farm Shop in Umm Suqueim and online shopping with home delivery. I loved my veggie box this week - green beans, beetroot, capsicum, coriander, cucumber, eggplant, mushroom, onions, potatoes, spring onions, tomatoes… and chard. Lots of good soup and salad in perspective, but wondering what to do with chard? No worries, I will check ripeme.com for recipe ideas!



The Market offers so many different stalls to visit from food vendors to cute children boutique to fun and stylish accessories… you are sure to find some holidays gift ideas. I did not get a chance to see everything and I look forward to visit again next weekend.

Here's a few highlights of my morning stroll.
Pantry Café, located in Al Wasl Square set up a large and inviting stand at the market, the perfect stop for coffee latte and croissant in the morning and delightful bigger bites for lunch like hanger burgers. The popular eatery – just won the What's On award for favorite cafe in Dubai – is definitely your one stop to satisfy your hungry tummy.

Sweet Connection, is the first Gluten Free Kitchen in the UAE. You can find Gluten Free cakes, cookies, breads, pizzas; everything is gluten free. In addition, Sweet Connection is able to provide delicious baked goods tailored to individual allergies and the needs. A great option for children with allergies to dairy, egg, sugar , nuts and soy. We had a bite into a lovely lemon cake and a banana loaf. You can also visit Sweet Connection in Mercato Mall.

☆ Looking for some good affordable, environmentally safe, earth friendly products? Check out The Green Eco Store, you might just find those little holiday goodies to please friends and kids. Reusable shopping bags, reusable smart coffee cup and sandwich bags are sweet stocking fillers to consider this year…

bumble & mouse beautifully design graphics for children made in Dubai. Totally in love with the art prints, stationary and keepsakes. A little gem!

Pomme is another UAE homegrown business. Handmade furniture designed for the age group of 0 to 4 years old. Loved the use of pastel colors and sweet decor shapes like star, crown, car, heart, butterfly… a dream for your special little people.

Claire Barlow Photography, lovely and talented Claire creates amazing photography of you and your family. Amazing pictures to remember engagement, maternity, newborn, family portrait, children's party… all in a very natural and honest approach. Different media options are possible from canvas, prints, books, collages, card customs to your needs. Something to cherish for ever...






Thursday, November 28, 2013

Real Pilates… some new found love...

This week I ventured out of my workout routine to try out Pilates. I have been practicing yoga for some years now and always enjoyed it and felt content with it. As part of your workout, you do need to try out new things and challenge yourself to new possibilities.

Thanks to the lovely Michelle behind Travel Junky Diary, I got to experience my first Pilates class.

Real Pilates applies the STOTT PILATES method. Exercise method for all bodies at all stages of life. A completely modifiable system of over 500 exercises performed on a mat or using specialized equipment. A Canadian-based organization with a 20-year legacy of research and development in to the original exercise method pioneered by Joseph Pilates.

I went for a mat class. Total Body Toning class with the lovely instructor Dana. A great combination of exercises using Flex-Band® exerciser, Fitness Circle® resistance ring and Toning Balls™. From a  quick talk, Dana asked us what we wanted to work on, we then started a series of movement specially design to sculpt and define arms, abs and legs. I definitely felt the challenge at time, working out some particular muscle group I had forgotten. It felt very efficient, after one hour workout, I felt some burn in my back legs and shoulders. I knew I would feel this gratifying muscle stiffness the next day, always the sign of a good workout. Dana was great motivating us ladies to achieve just a little more each time.

Conveniently located in Palm Strip Mall Jumeirah and JLT, Real Pilates studios offer a quite and friendly atmosphere. The changing room are clean and pleasant. The staff seemed very professional and caring. Over all, a really great experience. Look forward to more work out and to try out some new classes. Next time I might choose Xtend Barre Workout a fast-paced, 55-minute full body immersion that fuses dance, Pilates and sculpting exercises at the ballet barre or Pilates Core designed to help you establish core strength and stability. 

Thanks Real Pilates for having me. I am hooked!
Checkout real-pilates.com for schedule, class descriptions and all your questions answered. 



Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Dinner time with Edison Chopsticks

Last night we made rice, egg and veggie for dinner... not that exciting until I took out a little surprise… CHOPSTICKS! Edison Training Chopsticks are a fun and said to be an effective way to help develop your child’s fine motor skills, they provide early training for good handwriting habits, and improve their self-confidence with easy to learn steps.

Edison Training Chopsticks have one clear motto - Learn, eat, have fun. Success in our house!

If you are looking for xmas stocking fillers, good one to consider.

The Edison Training Chopsticks are distributed in the UAE by Bellis LLC and retail for AED 39 each at Read’n’Enjoy JBR, Deans Fujiya near Lamcy Plaza, Chez Sushi (Wasl Square and Dubai Marina Silverene Tower), Future Kids in Knowledge Village and also on mumzworld.com with shipping all over the GCC


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Beauty & Golf Tour 2013 - sport and sparkles

The Beauty & Golf Tour 2013 event held at the Els Golf Club last night is a great initiative to mix and promote golf tourism and fashion. This year event developed in partnership with former Miss World Tatania Kucharova and her Beauty Help Foundation raised money to improve life condition in Czech Republic.



A full day event from brunch, to golf tournament, fashion shows, fancy cars and gala diner was a total success, pleasing gentlemen to fashionistas.

The highlight of the evening was to meet the lovely Ophelia Blaimer. The German beauty from Munich showcased her collection in front of a very enthusiastic crowd last night. Her style is inspired by Bavarian traditional wear with a modern feminine extravagant elegance. I was amazed by the mix of exquisite fabric like French brocade, silk, taffeta and organza with tulle, pearls, old ornaments, sequins and ribbon, all working together uniquely to create a one of a kind piece. 

The accessory line consisting of bracelets, necklaces and belts is totally over the top in a fantastic glamorous manner. A mix of vintage, pompous, decadent and elegant design. Loved the necklace for a day look with jeans to a night out on the red carpet. Ophelia's collection is versatile, unique and really beautiful. 



For distribution and sale 
please contact us at +49 171 4061320
or send us an email to opheliablaimer@gmail.com


A few things...




♥ "Fresh As", little bags of goodness available at Ripe. In need of those whole/sliced fruits and fruit powders. Great for healthy snack or to add to my smoothies… Practically pack in in re-sealable foil bags.

♥ Cute idea, DIY Gift wrapping idea from www.partymostess.com

Little Impressions create unique keepsake of your little ones. Gift idea for the grand parents?! 
Call 050 9496091 for more info.

♥ Love this sweet and cosy sweater from Kappahl 

♥ Cute side walk chalk photo idea I came across 

theglitterguide.com great source of inspiration for your stylish home decor and cooking experience. Need to try this good looking ricotta and herbs dip!

♥ Celebrate UAE National Day at Kidville with fun activities for the little ones. Wednesday 27th of November from 4.00pm to 6.00pm at Mirdiff branch and Thursday 28th of November from 4.00pm to 6.00pm at JBR branch. AED50 for member and AED70 for non member. 
Checkout the website to book.

♥ Last week, I spent a lovely evening at the launch of El Sur, contemporary Spanish restaurant located in The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina. Loved the vibrant, lively and sophisticated bar and restaurant. Classic Spanish favourites with contemporary twists… watch this place for friendly tapas and drink evening with friends. 

♥ Already getting into the Xmas mood… yes it's too early but I can't help it! 
Like this sweet idea to warp 24 Xmas children's book and put them under the tree. 
Read one a day together until Xmas day.


Weekend Farmer Market




It's the weekend!
Looking forward to tomorrow Ripe Market at Safa Park
See you there! (hope weather permit though…)



Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Animal Sanctuary and Petting farm

Beautiful morning at The Animal Sanctuary and Petting farm yesterday. I have already done a blog post on this little gem a while back at the beginning of my blogging adventure. But I believe it deserve another one...

This non profit organization set up with passion, dedication and hard work by animal lovers has expended and improved since it's opening in 2009. The sanctuary is a fantastic place for children to learn in a fun and educational way about the animals. Luella and her friends got to feed, touch or hold various animals whilst learning facts about each one and how to care for the animals correctly. We got to see Porcupine, Cockatoo, Ponies, Deer, Llamas, Guinea Pigs, Rabbits, Kinkajou, Ferrets, Goats, Cows,Baboon, Ducks and many more...





The sanctuary offers a great experience for the children but first of all it's a refuge for the animals. Most all the animals are donated, unwanted or rescued animals. I am sure, if they could talk they would have stories to tell and some not so happy tale. Thanks to the team of volunteers and animal lovers they now have a home.










Alongside The Animal Sanctuary and Petting farm there is Posh Paws Kennels and Cattery where our dog Hugo spend his summer while we travel back for the holidays. Luella was happy to kind of see Hugo's "summer camp" and meet the lovely people who takes care of him...

It's a great family friendly place to visit on the weekend and something to consider for kids birthday parties. The center relies on donations and volunteers, so please feel free to bring food for the animals, or be a volunteer for jumble sales, school visits, ... There is no charge, but a small donation box sits on the table, the money donated helps to pay for food, medical bills and equipment. All the help to keep up with the good work is greatly appreciated.

poshpawsdubai.com

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Style for kids... H&M and Isabel Marant

The big buzz about Isabel Marrant collection for H&M is rising as we get closer to the date. I might not be fighting my way into H&M on Thursday morning to get a piece of the hot collection, but I will definitely get down at a quitter time to get some of the cool items from the kids line.

The focus on women swear might distract the fans from the children clothing line. The collection features signature Isabel Marant styling in a fun and youthful way with tie-dye high-tops, slogan sweatshirts and shearling denim jackets. I like her designs for the mix of sequins, knits, silk, and put together with her trademark Parisian flair.

Luella might not be a total fan, she is in the pink and glitter phase of a nearly 5 years old, but as a "mini me look" I might be able to convince her of a few items...

Happy non stress shopping! 




Monday, November 11, 2013

Diner: Spaghetti nests

This afternoon Luella wanted to prepare diner with me... That's nice but what should we make, I asked her? With an answer like "surprise me, maman", I had to think a minute. I remembered seeing somewhere (sorry can not give credits) a baked pasta recipe in shape of little bird nests. My little chef was thrilled with the idea... it turned out to be easy and good.



What you will need:
A large muffin tin tray lightly oiled
Tomato sauce (home made or from a jar, we took the easy road)
Whole wheat Spaghetti
Organic eggs
Basil leaves

How to:
Heat up the oven 180/200C
Cook the pasta as per package, cool down under cold water and drain
Create little nest with the pasta into each muffin hole
Add a full spoon of tomato sauce
Then crack an egg on top of each
Wrap around some more spaghetti around the egg yolks and giggle around to allow the egg white to seep through the spaghetti.
Bake for 20min or less until the egg white is set and yolk slightly runny.
Serve with a little basil
Bon appétit!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Thank you ElizabethSt

Feeling very honoured to be featured as "Mom of the moment" on Elizabethst , as part of the new Dubai/Abu Dhabi global moms section. Check out all the cool features and get daily insight from chic moms around the glob.




Thursday, November 7, 2013

A few things...




♥ Gorgeous "mini" bib collar necklace from Maddy&Eva Dubai home grown children clothing.
Lovely to add to a pretty dress or something plain! ARTE Time Square this Friday 8th November.
and check facebook.com/MaddyandEva .

♥ I have a lot of favorite app, this is a new addition to my iPhone. With smilebox.com you can share your photos and videos in a memorable way. The simple application lets you quickly and easily create slideshows, invitations, cards, collages, scrapbooks and photo albums. Bring your photos to life... and its fun.

♥ There is a new addition to the Dubai Airshow, Skyview. It's a four-day public event being held alongside the Dubai Airshow. Skyview will feature a purpose-built grand stand with a capacity for 6000 visitors, located right next to the Dubai Airshow event to allow the public direct views of the spectacular flying action above. On the ground, Skyview will offer exhibits, games and activities to keep both families and aviation enthusiasts excited. The Dubai Airshow exhibition hall and static display is restricted to aviation industry officials only, F&E Aerospace is working with partners such as KidZania, Gulf News and Etihad Airways, to deliver a different variety of entertainment for the general public in Skyview. Daily tickets for Skyview cost Dhs60 per adult and Dhs30 for children under 12. Skyview will take place from 18 to 21 November 2013, between 12 – 6pm at Dubai World Central (DWC), Jebel Ali. Visit www.skyview.aero for full details and to purchase tickets to what should be a fun event.

♥ Have you tried Aveem Chocolates? Organic, gluten free and fair trade Belgium chocolate, it's all good! Available at Organic Food & Cafe, Holland & Barret UAE and The Change Initiative. Go treat yourself...

Cobone, the Middle East’s largest daily deals site - has launch Triperna, a new way to experience travel in the Middle East. Triperna aims to inspire travel in the Middle East with its holiday packages to exotic locations around the world and local travel throughout the Middle East. Looking forward to score some good deals for our next little family getaway...

♥ inspiring photos from Stardust o Sequins, I like checking out the random pretty fashion, home decor, celebrity pics...

♥ On my to try list: Sweet and yummy recipe... Pavlova Heart with chantilly

Happy weekend! x






Ladies who lunch ... @okku

One of the highlight of the week was a fabulous lunch at Okku with my lovely girlfriends. It was a great catch up around totally amazing food. Multi-award winning OKKU, Japanese restaurant and lounge has been one of my Dubai favorite restaurant for years. So imagine my excitement when we got to try out the new lunch menu... delish! Let me tell you more...



The new menu has three ordering options to select from so whether you are after a quick light bite or a three course indulgence the menu will satisfy all diners. The Sui option is best suited for those looking to enjoy a delicious lunch but may be sensitive on time, and looking for the perfect light and healthy lunch.  Guests wanting a little more fill and variety, the second option is the Daichi choice. If the Sui and Daichi options are not quite enough and you feel like enjoying a long leisurely and relaxed lunch with a little sweet end then the Hibachi alternative is the one to go for. 








We enjoyed a fabulous three courses meal with lots of different "tapas" options to start with, the moreish baked Japanese aubergine, seared scallops and truffle wafu goma, amazing tuna tartare, ribeye tartare with chive and sesame, scallops with black truffle sauce, duck salad, red snapper sashimi carpaccio, lobster carpaccio and a few more delectable treats. Then came two whole baked king crab legs with masago and spicy mayonnaise, very impressive and nothing to disappoint our taste buds. We were spoiled with a selection of sushi and maki platter beautifully presented. By the time the main courses appeared we needed to take a mini break to avoid a food coma. I could not resist the Veal Braised Short Rib Shoyu-ni with ginger-soy, full of flavor and so tender, it was just melting on the tongue. For desert we had a classic chocolate fondant and the banana chocolate crepes, by then we could hardly enjoy the sweet treats...

I can not tell you enough how much we enjoyed the food, everything was good to amazing. We were spoiled by the variety of dishes, exquisite flavors, creative presentation and friendly knowledgeable staff. My girlfriend miss C is pregnant and they managed to accommodate her order with special attention. I would definitely go for a "lighter" option like the Daichi menu next time. It's nice to spoil your tummy and tease your taste buds... thank you okku!





Prices for the lunch are all very accessible starting at 69AED for the Sui, 89AED for the Daichi and 125 AED for the Hibachi. Highly recommended :)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Mamas & Papas little fashion show

You are invited! 

Mamas & Papas will be launching their Autumn/Winter collection at their The Dubai Mall store, on Nov 12th from10am-12pm. Come and watch the adorable little models showcasing new collection of kidswear, that go up to 6years!

Come for a lovely morning, enjoy the show and some loveable treats and refreshments, as your little ones can enjoy some fun engaging activities in store! If you RSVP to the event, you will also receive an exclusive offer to avail on the day of the event.

If you’re interested, here’s the RSVP link where you can book your spot: : http://www.rsvp-invitation.com/MamasandPapasGrowUpwithus



Time for some UAE shopping pride


Less then a month and the UAE will be celebrating it's 42 years of independence. To celebrate the UAE’s National Day, the Government of Dubai usually plan a wide range of family activities and festive performances, including shows, children's attractions, a downtown parade and much more, at shopping malls, parks and other venues around town. Check www.dubaicalendar.ae closer to the date for more details.

Looking forward to celebrate and be part of the family festivities?! Be sure to dress the kids in the UAE colors this year, check www.melijoe.com/me for some cool and stylish outfit. 





Beauty tips for your tress... what's your secret...

The subject of beautiful hair comes in the conversation "oh so often"... Women seems to always be looking for the best hairdresser, miracle product, secret tip or last celebrity style.

Here's a one stop for all your hair (and all beauty stuff) tips and questions answers, with lots of inspiring hair style: thebeautydepartment.com.

Wanna know my little tips...
♥ pure organic coconut oil mask to keep your strong and healthy - see blog post. Good to wear at the beach, it will not only keep knots at bay, it will protect your tresses and stop the salt from drying hair out.

♥ I use Pantene Clinicare, it really give my hair some TLC. I like to use it for a couple of months and take a break from it.

♥ For texture and to extend your blow dry by a day, I like batiste dry shampoo available at Boots pharmacy.

♥ Tips for your ponytail... use two elastics to hold the pony in place, one stacked on top of the next to make the pony stick out further for extra bounciness. Or create the illusion of a longer and fuller pony tail with this trick.

Your turn! Tell us about your little tricks and favourite products... comment below! :)


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Ladies who lunch...@Urbano italian trattoria

My lovely friend and I over indulged last week over lunch.... We had a great catch up over good food and beautiful view of the Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Fountains. Our first experience at Urbano, Italian bistro located in Souk Al Bahar was a real treat.




The menu offers a large selection of authentic Italian dishes from various Italian regions. It took us a while to choose our order, many items on the menu were just so appealing. We selected two kind bruschetta as appetizer, Zucca: Roasted pumpkin with fine sliced bresaola and goats cheese and Cipolla e rosmarino: Caramelised red onion, Gorgonzola cheese and picked rosemary. I absolutly loved the combination of ingredients and flavors. Great start!




To continue our lunch, we picked some light options, the Carpaccio served with rocket, parmesan cheese and mustard cream dressing and a lovely fresh salad with beetroot, roasted pumpkin, hazelnuts, mixed leaves and goat’s cheese drizzled with honey balsamic dressing. Looking at the menu, I realized that we need to come back for a diner to try some other very attractive main course options like Branzino Siciliano: Roasted seabass with lemon, anchovy and caper stuffing and Agnello brasato: Slow braised lamb shank with shallot jus, spring thyme and tomato potatoes. The pizza selection looked interesting in flavor, classic with a twist.

After all, it was a treat for us girls, so we had no regret and went for desert as well! We were not disappointed. My choice went for classic rich and creamy Pannacotta:vanilla pannacotta with wild berries. And my chocolate lover friend choose the Torta di cioccolato e hazelnut: roasted hazelnut sponge with milk chocolate mousse and dark chocolate glaze. This last desert was indulgence to the roof, but definitely one of the best slice of cake I had in a long time.




You can also find a small selection of ingredients such as olive oils, balsamic vinegar and a selection of pastas available for purchase to recreate at home some inspiring Italian dishes.

Over all a nice trattoria, Italian bistro with good comfort food. Nothing to be disappointed with... just missing a nice crisp class of Italian vino.
urbanorestaurants.com

photos from urbanorestaurant.com and my iPhone

Saturday, November 2, 2013

instaweekend


What we were up to this weekend!?

Spreading some French love at school for International Day.
Lots of Halloween fun with family and friends.
Lovely beach time in Ras Al Khaima.
Enjoying my wannabe "House of Harlow" bargain goodies from Forever21.
xoxo