Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Turkish Meatball: Kemal Pasha Meatball (Plus Kemal Pasha Dessert)







The best meatball in Turkey is from Bursa! Bursa, 2-hour drive from Istanbul, is famous for this "Kemal Pasha" meatballs (obviously named after Turkey's most iconic leader  - Mustafa Kemal.) It has a unique taste - marinated with the best spices and sauces.

There are hundreds of meatball shops on highway of Istanbul-Izmir. Most of these shops goes way back like 40 years (goodness)! The cooks are usually and the cooks the owner and are very professional on meatball and other local tastes like Kemal Pasha dessert. Ahhh Kemal Pasha dessert is simply divine. This is served with sherbet and topped with nuts. Like the country's history, this dessert is well know for over a hundred years!

We have tasted this glorious meat and dessert last summer, summer of 2011 and we have experienced taste bud sensations like no other. It's really so good, you will forget your name. Really! Okay, it might be an exaggeration but it really is worth a 2-hour drive just to taste Kemal Pasha meatballs!

It was an awesome experience!

we went to one of the meatball shops in Bursa - Meshur!



fresh bread and fresh salad - a little taste of heaven before the actual heaven! 

FRESHNESS GUARANTEED! 

one serving of Kemal Pasha meatball! 


the happiness on the Turk's face is priceless! Obviously, he loved the meatball! 

Okay, she loves the meatball too, she's just being silly! 

Kemal Pasha dessert - BLISS! 

For now, we'll just drool on these photos and maybe get to taste them again next year. 



Afiyet Olsun!

Villagio Fire - Beyond Words





The past two days have been really sad and depressing for all residents of Qatar. I still can't find the words to express the sadness, the fear, the regret and all other emotions and thoughts going on our heart and minds.

This incident became to personal for us. It could have been anyone of us and there is still a high probability that might happen again if lessons are not learned, changes not implemented in the country. And that makes it really really scary.

The Villagio Mall fire incident will definitely be a turning point in the lives of many in Qatar. Situations need to be reassessed, priorities re-set, new decisions to be analyzed over and over again.

There is the complete information in Doha News and the video on the official press conference about the incident.

This event will never be forgotten. Our thoughts and prayers are with victims and family of the Villagio fire.




We can only imagine the grief of all the parents and family members of the victims. It is unimaginable that such thing would happen to any family.  May God give us all the courage and wisdom to go on living the once thought of as a "high standard of living" in Qatar. Above all now, we need "peace of mind."

Would we ever have peace of mind  whenever the kids are away from us, parents, in Doha? It will never be the same again here for us, that we know for sure.


It has been almost 48 hours since the Villagio fire and it still hurts like hell to think about. Still unthinkable!

God bless us all.

 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Qatar Cinema: Men in Black III


Time flies so fast indeed when you are with family in Doha. Can't believe we missed the first day of Men in Black III in Cinema last 25th May 2012. Oh well, we are watching tonight and availing of the QTEL Cinema Promotion, two tickets for the price of one - AWESOME.

We read the reviews and it was all good! Can't wait to see the movie.


Here's the schedule of the movie in different Qatar Cinema in Qatar Happening Cinema Guide.

















And of course,a little bit of teaser, the movie trailer:

Keep exploring!

Toddlers Books in Doha



We love the good old traditional books especially for toddlers. There is something about actually feeling the pages of the books, turning these pages and trying to destroy the book that appeals to us. It's fun. But of course, we love also our iPad applications of Young Readers. They are also handy and mobile.

For the past months, we have read hundreds (well, almost!) of books and here are some of our favorites.


Who Do You Love? : A Touch and Feel Book - This is indeed a must have or must read book to toddlers. We love it so much especially the part where we feel the next bear. We simply can't get enough of this book.

Who Do You Love: A Touch and Feel Book 

Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type: Do you want to teach your toddler how to handle "dispute resolution" or simply what a typewriter is? This book is perfect for these two things. Here is a  very good review from Amazon. This book is definitely worth checking out.


Click, Clack, Moo recently won the Caldecott award, and is very deserving of that honor. I enthusiastically endorse it for your children aged from 2 through 6. This book will be considered a classic children's tale within five years.
Many great children's books start from the point of view of role reversals. You take objects or animals and make them be like humans. But no one could have developed a funnier idea along those lines than having typing cows who lead a general strike on a farm.
"Farmer Brown has a problem. His cows like to type."
"All day long he hears. Click, clack, moo. Click, clack, moo. Clickety clack, moo."
"At first, he couldn't believe his ears."
But it gets worse. One day he receives a typewritten note that says:
"Dear Farmer Brown,
The barn is very cold at night. We'd like some electric blankets.
Sincerely,
The Cows"
Farmer Brown makes the mistake of treating the cows like cows. He tells them, "No way." They type up a note and put it on the barn door. "Sorry. We're closed. No milk today."
The next day, another note appeared.
"Dear Farmer Brown,
The hens are cold too. They'd like electric blankets.
Sincerely,
The Cows"
The negotiations continue toward a hilarious conclusion.

Each of these letters to Farmer Brown cannot help but inspire gales of uncontrollable laughter among your tykesters. The ending may actually cause laughter-induced pain because it is so hilarious.
The illustrations are particularly appealing. Ms. Lewin has drawn them to be large in features, vivid, bold, and colorful. They make the story more intense by capturing both a sense of movement and the personality of the characters. This is one of the best illustrated stories I have ever seen for preschoolers. That is important, because the illustrations carry a heavy burden as you first read this story to your child. No one has ever seen a typing cow, so the illustrations help fill in the gaps. Naturally, you will see opportunities to handle side issues like "how would a cow type, if a cow could type?"
Interestingly, Ms. Cronin is an attorney who also collects antique typewriters. Anyone who has ever been part of a labor negotiation will quickly recognize the universal truths around which she has structured this delightful story. I suspect that she has been part of one or two.
After you and your child become familiar with the story, I suggest that you think together about what is the right thing to do with regard to animals who do not send you typewritten letters. It is never too early for children to learn about each person's responsibility to live in harmony with our fellow creatures and to properly care for them.
May you always be clear about what you are looking for! Who knows? You may even get it.



CLICK CLACK MOO: COWS THAT TYPE



No More Eee-orrh!: Donkey says EEE-ORRH, says our adorable Kerim. And we read this book for more than gazillion times. Here's the book description from Amazon.


Patient: Dicky Donkey. 
Symptoms: No more Eee-orrh! 
Treatment: 1. Mule Gruel. 2. Bray Spray. 3. Donkey Tonic. Notes: What can we do to make this donkey better? Dicky Donkey drives everyone crazy! Each morning, they wake up to "EEE-ORRH!" Then one day, Dicky opens his mouth and nothing comes out. He's lost his Eee-orrh! Poor Dicky Donkey! In the meantime, the neighbors realize how much they miss Dicky's Eee-orrh. How will they wake up in the morning? How Dicky finally gets his Eee-orrh back is endearingly recounted by Lydia Monks, whose paint-and-collage illustrations pop off the page.

NO MORE EE-ORRH!

Fish Finds A Home (Sparkle Books) It's never too early to teach kids how to care for the environment. As much as this book is so cute and sparkly, it also has something to say about the environmental management.


FISH FINDS A HOME! 

There are lots more books to be posted here so please stay tuned. If you are interested to get these books, go shop at Amazon. They deliver to Doha.





Keep exploring!
 

Fun City





It's that time of the year again when kids restless at home. Summer time here in Doha is needless to say, challenging to keep the kids busy. With their tons of energy, hyper-kids are really a big concern to deal with during the heat.

During the Home Centre sale, we tried the Fun City play area. We left the kids in the area and we were not satisfied at all with the place. First of all, there is only one attendant and some kids are crying already with no one attending to them. We were only away for 15 minutes and the kids were already upset. Since we already paid for the entire hour, we decided to hang out with the kids inside the play area. The kids didn't enjoy the area one bit. We tried to go to the place where there are balls in the second level of the play area but the place is totally wobbly and unsafe. Well, at least for me.

I am wondering who these play areas are maintained or inspected for safety purposes. God forbids, these place could break down when kids are playing here. Goodness, please not.


this is a good slide but it tends to be a bit crowded especially during summer!

the not so happy Turknoys!

who checks the safety of these play areas I wonder? 

FIRE!! 

we would have enjoyed if Mommy was not too concern about the place breaking down on us. 



This is a nice alternative to play areas. Station cars - no need to use token. Safety guaranteed.

there is such thing as free ride! ;) 

I suppose we should explore other things to do during summer. Reading is always an option.

Keep exploring!
 

Friday, May 25, 2012

For Kids Friday: Elephant From Egg Carton



ELEPHANTS!

Our little boy loves elephants a lot.. or in his language, EW! These little art works were done with the Dad. They are simply so adorable during art sessions together.  It might not look like elephant but to their imagination, they are.



elephant from egg cartons!

another shot at elephant from egg cartons!




Keep exploring!

Story Time at School World




Turknoys just love Story Time. And we are always fortunate enough to find lots of story time activities. This time, we found a Story Time activity at School World in Parco Mall.  This mall is located close to Salwa Road and very close to D-Ring so it was accessible for us.

And what a great story time it had been not to mention what a find the bookstore, School World, is. There are lots of great book titles which are very difficult to find here in Doha. A must-visit for all kids book lover in Doha.

We story time session is so fantastic we are already looking forward to the second session. It's the free things in life... ;)


early bird - can't wait for the story time session to start, he started already on his own!

he's so at home, love the books and can't stop reading!

some of the books read during Story Time!

someone is impatient for the story time to start! ready, set..... go!

funny guy, he knows the book already so he decided to get his own book while listening to the story time!

Kerim definitely spend a very productive day during the Story Time at School World.



Keep exploring!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Doha Event: Summer Market 2012


We've done good selling Turkish Evil Eye the last bazaar we have joined. Now, we will participate in another entrepreneurship initiative - this time, for the Doha Mums Summer Market.

This is the 3rd Summer Market hosted by Doha Mums but our very first time to participate, we are so psyched!


Hope to see you all there! Please stop by our table and say hello to us - or  better yet, buy our products!



Doha Mums 2012 Summer Market  
Venue: Ramada Plaza Doha (ballroom) 
Saturday - 26th May, 2012 @ 11.00 AM




Keep exploring!
 

Dining Out in Doha: The Opera Cafe




Another breakfast dining out! This time it's not McDonald's Breakfast. Didn't even realize that The Opera offers breakfast until 12NN at The Mall. Now we know. If we are looking for a quieter breakfast (aka- no kids!), The Opera Cafe breakfast is a nice alternative place.

Although, not fancy breakfast, and the cost is almost the same as McDonald's, although much much healthier with lots of choices - American, French and Mediterranean breakfast, they have the selection. Not to mention fresh juices and free basket of bread.


The Opera Cafe is on 2nd floor of gives a good view of The Mall shops. The shops are still closed during breakfast timing so we had fun looking at the wide space with no shoppers. It's refreshing for early morning. Weird, we know.

Now, if  we would bring the kids here, it would be kids running around and up and down the stairs for sure. NOT!


the turk is happy with his cheese selection! 

toast and fries for breakfast

fresh strawberry juice

It's the simple things in Doha that gives as joy such as a quiet breakfast with husband. Priceless.


Keep exploring!
 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Doha Event: CIRQUE DU SOLEIL






TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE AT VIRGIN AND WE ARE EXCITED! 

This year, we started getting "cultured" and watched Romeo and Juliet for Kidz. This summer we plan to watch Cirque du Soleil with the family. We have read quite great reviews and recommendations we know we won't regret the show. Oh la la! Something to look forward to this sizzling summer 2012 in the desert. Gotta love Doha Events!




Here are some of the details from the news.

The world-famous entertainment group, Cirque du Soleil will stage their longest running show, ‘Saltimbanco’, in Qatar this summer. It will be their first show in the country, and their only performance in the Gulf region for this tour. 
The performances will be held at Aspire Zone from July 4-7 with six shows scheduled to take place over four days. Ticket prices range from QR130 up to QR1,100 and are on sale now from Virgin Megastores and online from  ww.cirquedusoleil.qa. 
Saltimbanco is a fun and colourful show, explained Cirque du Soleil publicist Maxime Charbonneau, adding that the show embodies the values of today’s global community, promoting a message of peace, unity and happiness. 
The show, described as “a vivid portrayal of the diversity that defines a metropolis” is the group’s longest running touring piece, performing to over 11.5mn fans since opening in 1992. It features a dreamlike world, with different characters performing a variety of breathtaking stunts throughout a show filled with colour, music and joy, explained Charbonneau.



About Cirque du Soleil:
From a group of 20 street performers at its beginnings in 1984, Cirque du Soleil evolved into a major Qu├ębec-based organization providing high-quality artistic entertainment. The company has 5,000 employees, including more than 1,300 artists from more than 50 different countries.
Cirque du Soleil has brought wonder and delight to more than 100 million spectators in more than 300 cities in over forty countries on six continents. Cirque du Soleil International Headquarters are in Montreal, Canada. For more information about Cirque du Soleil, visit www.cirquedusoleil.com.
Partners:
Cirque du Soleil gratefully acknowledges the St. Regis as their official hotel partner.
SHOW INFORMATION:
VENUE:
Aspire Dome
Show Schedule (July 4 - 7, 2012):
Wednesday, July 4 at 8:00pm
Thursday, July 5 at 8:00pm
Friday, July 6 at 4:00pm and 8:00om
Saturday, July 7 at 4:00pm and 8:00om
TICKETS (Prices in QAR):
GOLD 350
SILVER 250
REGULAR I 175
REGULAR II 130
VVIP 1100
VIP I 750
VIP II 650
PLATINUM 575
Let us know if you watched the show already and how you liked it. Woohoo! 


Keep Exploring!
 

Art Fun at The Pearl (3D Painting)






Our luck would have it, we saw some 3D Painting going on at the Pearl during one of our strolls in the area. The kids had a blast watching the 3D Painter at work. It's just amazing what kids would like when we brave ourselves to get out of the house.


Now if only we could paint some 3D Painting at home.


3d Painting!


Our little boy can't stop watching the 3D Painter! 


Just one of those great moments in Doha where things are great and priceless! Awesome!






Keep exploring!
 

Dining Out in Doha: Fuddruckers





Supposedly the world's greatest burger according to their brand so off we went to visit Fuddruckers at Al Dafna. Hitting two birds with one  stone we are also trying to give our family visitors in Doha a new dining experience.

We love Applebees a lot and frequent the place a lot as well but we are looking for something new. So we are hoping that Fuddruckers will give us the new experience we are looking for. We were already disappointed twice with Bennigans which is very close to Fuddruckers.

And did we like the place? We definitely enjoyed hanging out there. However, I find the place unkept and dirty for a restaurant. They don't seem to have proper maintenance for the place. The kids area is available with very dirty carpet, I didn't allow the kids to take off their shoes.

The meal experience, however, is good, to say the least. Once we order a meal for us, we also get ourselves bottomless cola, make our own salad (eat all you can too at that!) and we get to choose the size of burger we want.

A bit sad, but this is a new experience for our family and family visitors. It's not that sad though. We had fun that night! The customer service is way better than Bennigans (we prefer the customer service at Applebees though.)

Here are our photos:

the grandma and our little boy!

the play area 



fresh salad bar

Make-your-own salad 


the auntie and our little boy - and yeah, we love their kids meal!


we ordered budget meal! LOL, cheapo!

another budget meal - hotdog! HAHA!

The freshest Burgers in Town??  I think I tasted better burgers somewhere in Doha! 


My Chimichanga  - which is actually quite delectable! 

Our youngest sister with her full meal!

I think this is burger steak! 


Eat all you can fresh salad and fresh burger, we are definitely coming back!


Keep exploring!

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