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Monday, December 23, 2013

The Nail Artelier: Christmas Nail Art!

It sure is feeling Christmassy already.. Christmas is only two days away! *jumps about*

Can't help but get suckered into all the happy Christmas songs and festive mood, even though like I mentioned before, I don't actually celebrate Christmas with my family/YZ, it's the best kind of reason to meet up with all my various gangs and make merry ;) And of course, eat away! :X

Another great thing about Christmas is the excuse to doll up in the name of Christmas, and nothing could be cuter than Christmas-themed nails! I was so excited to book my Christmas nail appointment with Jenrine at The Nail Artelier :D :D :D I heard that they're almost all fully booked all the way til after Christmas already, so if you wanna try your luck, do call in to make an appointment!

I wasn't disappointed at all, I left The Nail Artelier so extremely pleased with my gorgeous new Christmas nails!

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
I told Jenrine I wanted a gradient base, and snowflakes and reindeer nail art! To make it more interesting, I had different designs done for all four accent nails.. :D

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
Mr Reindeer on one of my thumbs looking super cute and adding a happy dash of red to the classy blue and white palette!

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
One ring finger had a snow globe that's handmade painstakingly with layers and layers of gel, while I had a super big and bling silver snowflake embellishment on the other ring finger. Super chio max! *.*

And some pictures in natural day light :D

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
The snow globe is so lovely!
Christmas Nails Snowflakes
I love how it's so 3D.

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
The snowflake embellishment is just as pretty.

Christmas Nails Snowflakes
I am so ready for Christmas! ^.^




Here's a video of Jenrine working on this set of gorgeous Christmas nails! One of my favourite sets yet! ❤ I'm still so amazed with Jenrine's mad skills D:

To go with my manicure, I also got my toenails done, along with a pampering foot spa session, when my feet/calves were gently scrubbed, massaged, and moisturised! Shouldn't be neglecting my feet and toenails too, right? ;)

The Nail Artelier Argyle Art
Showing off my toe nails in a pair of pretty strappy heels! I love it that they're so match with my mani :D This set of nail art is actually from December's promos! So you only have to top up $25 on top of regular nail services to get them done :D

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The Nail Artelier

48 Haji Lane 
Singapore 189241

Weekdays: Open from 12pm / last appointment at 8pm
Saturdays: Open from 11am / last appointment at 8pm
Sundays: Open from 12pm / last appointment at 6pm

To book an appointment, please call The Nail Artelier at 62988028 during operating hours.
For all other inquiries, please email The Nail Artelier at thenailartelier@gmail.com.


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Merry merry Christmas in advance, folks!

xoxo

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Friday, December 20, 2013

Brunch at Habitat Coffee!

Sundays are especially awesome, when you start the day off with a great meal and fabulous company, yay! I had a weekend off last week, and it felt SO good! I spent the entire weekend lazing around at home by myself, and also out for some quality time with girlfriends and YZ :D

So last Sunday, I had a long over-due brunch together with the girls: Jess, Mel and Marie :) You don't know how hard it was to arrange this get-together, these girls are even busier than me, and that's saying a lot!!! So glad we managed to fix a date/time for a catchup over brunch, and good thing we all live so near each other now.. Wheee!

More brunches/meals soon!

Habitat Coffee Bistro
We decided on Habitat Coffe because it's near to all our homes! It's located along the stretch of foodie places at Upper Thomson, which can be quite ulu but is just about a 10-minute drive away for me.

Habitat Coffee Bistro

Habitat Coffee Bistro
Habitat has a self-ordering system, so you decide what to get, then order and pay up at the cashier. The food/drinks will then be served to you!

Habitat Coffee Bistro
With Jess!

Habitat Coffee Bistro
Marie and Mel!

What I like about Habitat is that they have a really nice selection of brunch items yum! And also, they are quite affordable as compared to many other cafes/brunch places out there. The fare is pretty good, though the food at Habitat probably won't win any awards, it's hearty comfort food at its best!

Us four girls ordered four different brunch items and one dessert to share, including a few drinks. Cost about $20 per pax on average? Way cheaper than places like Symmetry or Grub.

Habitat Coffee Bistro
Look at our spread!

Habitat Coffee Bistro
Mel ordered this Christmasy looking drink, I have no idea what it is, but it looked so festive in its red cup and colourful sprinkles!

Habitat Coffee Breakfast
The Big Ben
(Scrambled eggs and honey baked ham on english fluff, 100gm chicken cheese sausage, grilled tomato and mini potato pancakes)

When you're feeling peckish and want to have a bit of everything, big breakfasts are the way to go! Habitat's The Big Ben had a nice cheesy sausage, and I liked the potato pancakes! I felt that the scrambled eggs were mediocre, but on the whole it was very enjoyable still.

Habitat Coffee Eggs Relish
Eggs Tomato Relish
(Secret tomato goodness recipe served in a hot plate with two eggs, bacon, baby spinach, and country sourdough toast)

I loved this! Come to realise that I have a liking for stuff that come in tomato sauce, lol. There was a similar dish at Symmetry that I liked too! It was so tangy and flavourful, and the oozy soft eggs made the dish x100 times better! It was slightly on the salty side, but should be fine if you wipe it up with the bread that accompanies this dish.

Habitat Coffee Eggs Benedict
Eggs Benedict
(Poached eggs and honey baked ham on sundried tomato bread topped with hollandaise sauce)

I felt that the poached eggs were a little overcooked, because the egg white didn't have that soft, jelly texture anymore but was a bit rubbery.. The egg yolks were still luscious though! Didn't care much for the tomato toast that it came on, it didn't seem to really meld well with the eggs and ham. The hollandaise sauce wasn't too rich, which was good for me!

Habitat Coffee Pancakes Banana
Mama's Banana Pancakes
(House batter pancakes topped with maple syrup, caramelised bananas, drizzled with chocolate and strawberry syrup)

HThe pancakes looked so deceivingly simple, but packed a whole lot of YUM in them! They were surprisingly fluffy and soft, and sandwiched by the warm caramelised bananas, it was really delicious! Even Jess complimented these pancakes, lol.

Habitat Coffee Pancakes Banana
The pancakes are best eaten all stacked up! :P

Habitat Coffee Truffle Fries
Hello Truffle
(Home seasoned truffle fries dressed with fine grated parmesan)

Just about everywhere serves up truffle fries now, and these didn't fall short of the usual standard, nice aroma of truffle infused into the crispy shoestring fries! So far though, I think my favourite truffle fries are those at Strangers Reunion.

Habitat Coffee Sticky Date Pudding
Pick A Date
(Warm sticky date pudding, cream butterscotch, and vanilla bean ice cream)

Jess was raving on and on about this, so we had to order it! It was pretty good, I liked the dense texture of the cake, and I loved the addition of walnuts to the dish, I'm nuts over nuts! :P There was a strong tinge of spices (nutmeg) in this though so if you don't like the sharp taste of spice you might not like this. Good for sharing, not so good if you're having it all by yourself because it can get pretty heavy! :O

Our brunch came to an end all too soon because Mel had to leave early.. Let's meet up again soon, girls! No leaving early or coming hungover next time hor!

Habitat is a great brunch hang-out spot for the North-Easties, but expect it to be super crowded on weekends! It might not be so suitable for large group gatherings because the bistro is quite small, but for small groups, it would be more ideal. But then again, most of the brunch places/cafes nowadays are all like that! Guess it makes for a cosy experience.

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Habitat Coffee

233 Upper Thomson Road Phone
Tel: 64562567

Hours
Tue - Fri: 11:00 - 22:30
Sat - Sun: 10:30 - 22:30
Closed: Mon

http://www.habitatcoffee.com.sg

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It's funny how friendship works sometimes. I've been acquaintances with both Jess and Mel for the longest time, we've seen each other around at events and stuff, but never really got the chance to get to know one another on a deeper level.

I don't know how it happened, but somehow, Jess is a friend that has grown a lot closer to me this year. Thinking back now, I really can't remember when our friendship started blossoming, but I guess for a generous and friendly girl like Jess, it definitely isn't hard to make friends with her! Together with Mel, the three of us can go on and on about silly and frivolous topics as well as getting serious with heart-to-heart talk. We only met Marie through our vintage picnic shoot earlier this year (I'm gonna be putting up some photos from the shoot soon!), and she's such an easy-going and lovely girl too!

So glad to be blessed with so many wonderful friendships in my life! :) I'm so fortunate, really :')

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Outfit: Porcelain Teacup Dress from TheVelvetDolls
Nude Maryjanes from Zara
Bag from Miumiu (It's Jessica's!)

My outfit shot was taken by Jess, thank you for the super nice OOTD! *hearts* It was really funny because Jess was like "I was thinking I wanted to shoot my outfit with a vintage bicycle..." and we walked about ten steps and found one outside an ice cream shop down the same stretch as Habitat omg. Perfect! Plus it totally matches my dress with that shade of baby blue hehe.

I love the gorgeous embroidery on this dress! *.*

My hair colour is super faded. It needs to be touched up! Those black hair roots are horrible. TGIF TGIF TGIF x 3 because next week is Christmas! I don't actually celebrate Christmas with my family or with YZ, but it feels jolly and happy anyway!

:D

Happy weekend!!

xoxo
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Thursday, December 19, 2013

Dinner at The Black Swan!


Last week, we celebrated the birthday of the December babies with a special dinner at The Black Swan.

I've walked past this place a number of times without even realising that it's a restaurant, because the exterior facade looks so unassuming, with no big signboards or anything o_o

Our table was booked for 7pm on a Friday night, and the restaurant was already half-full with people having drinks/snacks (They have Happy Hour from 5PM-7.30PM weekdays when you get 30% off liquor and oysters!


The interior of the restaurant has a classic, old world feel, very classy and grand. My only gripe is that it got so dark that all my pictures turned out really dim and yellow :( I forgot to set the white balance on my camera, so pardon the pictures!



With the two dears Tricia and Trish!


Siao charbos Jayne, Eve and Evonne :D


So for happy hour, there was like 30% off oysters! Jayne and Eve (the only two who take oysters) were happily slurping up oysters, eeks.

The dinner menu at The Black Swan is only a two page spread, and we ordered almost every single main, and quite a few of the sides to share too!


The New Caesar $18

The most note-worthy part of this dish is... the caramelised bacon!!! Tastes almost like ba kua, really. Hahahaha. Greens were fresh and crunchy, but it's not really a very substantial dish. Good as a starter!


Half Dozen Escargot $21

We all had trouble digging the meat out of the shell because the forks provided weren't small enough... I loved the garlicky and salty seasoning though!!


Truffled Egg and Bacon Confit Crostini $14

This doesn't look like much, but it was SO good! I have no idea how its made, but in each eggshell, there's an eggy mixture infused with truffle and bacon bits. So addictive! Remember to dip the sticks of toast right into the truffled egg and bacon to really savour the wonderful taste and flavour. YUM!


Crispy Calamari $18

Definitely one of the best side dishes to order, it was really addictive and I couldn't stop reaching for more pieces of the crispy calamari, dipped in the zesty lime sauce provided! The batter is light but crunchy, and the pieces of calamari were soft and had a nice chewy bite to it.

French Onion Soup $19

Tricia ordered this soup so I didn't really try much of it. It looked pretty good and came with two huge slices of bread!


Wild Mushroom, Homemade Bacon Jam, Mozzarella Crostini $9

Can't go wrong with mushrooms and bacon and cheese! This reminded me vaguely of pizza, what with the crisp bread and mozzarella cheese. It was pretty good, but didn't have me wow-ing over it.

Seafood Linguini $32
(prawns,calamari,clams,tomato, garlic, chilli)

I wasn't impressed by the seafood linguini, because the pasta was overcooked in my opinion and was almost soggy, without the firmness of pasta that has been cooked just right. Not a memorable dish to me, though Evonne thought it was okay.


The Black Swan Burger 26
(seasoned chuck, mature cheddar, sunny side up egg, streaky bacon, bibb lettuce, toasted bun, fries)

This, was REALLY good! Thick, juicy, chewy meat patty, topped with cheddar cheese that's slightly melted and on top of that, a sunny side up egg. The patty is so huge that Eve had a lot of trouble finishing it! Recommended for beef/burger lovers. I could probably have two of those patties all to myself.... Muahahahha.


USDA 365 Days Grain Fed Tenderloin $42 
(5-6oz, béarnaise, fries)

Trish had the steak which I shared with her, and I thought it was slightly tough (probably depends on the doneness too) but had a good texture and flavour! Oh, those thick-cut fries were totally addictive. I couldn't stop popping them in my mouth...

Duck Leg Confit $36
(36 hour sous-vide, bacon potatoes, fresh thyme, mustard sauce)

Jayne's duck confit with crisp skin and well-marinated meat that was tender and fall-off-the-bone! I really enjoy duck confit and I think it's hard to find a good one in Singapore. This was definitely one of the better ones I've had.


Coconut Creme Caramel


Date and Toffee Pudding

I didn't have any of the desserts, but they looked so tempting, especially the coconut creme pudding caramel with gula melaka! Next time I'm so gonna try it!


A birthday surprise for the two birthday girls, muahaha. But there was a slight confusion and they got the "wrong" Tricia/Trisha! Oops. Too confusing so I don't blame them hahaha.

Happy birthday sexbombssss! Stay gorgeous and happy every day okay!

Group picture with Eve, Evonne, Jayne, Trish, Tricia, and Carol (who works at The Black Swan and served us with utmost hospitality!)

With Christmas coming up, The Black Swan would certainly make a lovely location for a celebratory wine-and-dine session with the other half, methinks! Prices are pretty affordable and not too exorbitant too! There's also a set lunch that looks very value-for-money (32++ for 2 courses and 38++ for three!) Good service coupled with fantastic ambience. Thumbs up!

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The Black Swan

19 Cecil Street, The Quadrant
Singapore 049704

Reservations: (SMS) +65 8181 3305

Operating hours:

Closed Sundays
Lunch – Mon-Fri: 11.30am-3pm
Dinner – Mon-Sat: 5pm-11pm
Supper – Mon-Thurs: 10.pm-1am, Fri-Sat: 10.30pm-2pm


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After dinner, we headed to Eve's to chill while waiting for the clock to strike midnight because surprise two was in-store for the mini sex bomb Tricia whose actual birthday we celebrated for her right after midnight.. With a visit from her love, John!


This girl was so happy she couldn't stop squealing in joy!

Final group picture that ended a very tiring night, reached home at like 2am plus and I officially declare myself too old for staying out so late already hahahaha #cannotmakeit

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Outfit! Both top and skirt are coming up on TheVelvetDolls.. In fact they'll be available today!!

I love the cut of the trumpet skirt. It's uber flattering and so cute!


:D

I've been busy this week with all my beauty appointments back-to-back, one has got to doll up for Christmas, y'know? Got my Christmas nails done at The Nail Artelier, my lash extensions touched up at Graceous, and next I need to go get my hair done at Salon Vim! So ready for Christmas hehe.

With totally no eye makeup/eyeliner on, only lash extensions from Graceous!

My beautiful Christmas nails! So in love with the gorgeousness.

Part of looking good is staying healthy and slender.. so I'm even doing the Hic'Juice 3-day Reboot detox with raw, organic, cold-pressed juices because I think my body needs to get rid of some excess weight from too much good food, seriously. It's been a long time since I did a detox, so this is much-needed! More daily updates on my Dayre.. It's Day 2 today and I've been doing pretty good so far! :D

Okay, gonna leave it here for now because I need to get back to editing photos for TheVelvetDolls launch! Last burst before Christmas, go go go!

xoxo
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© Yina Goes

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