Category Archives: Home

House updates

I wouldn’t really call our house a house… more like a room. But its bigger than most flats (studio and one bedroom apartments) I have seen in Dubai. If this room was available in Dubai, they would have partitioned it to four rooms, each room having 2-3 people in it. So I guess I can refer to it as a house.

Our room/house is coming along. NO painting has been done yet since I really needed to tackle the badly installed, old, peeling wallpaper. I had already talked to a freelance contractor to get it removed and painted and he has already surveyed the work and given me a price. But the day we both agreed that he start working, he didn’t show up. What a douche! Anyway, I just found him online and called him. I guess it really is better to find someone recommended by a friend. The problem is, I don’t have much of a network here. I really should get out more.

SO here are some pics of the room with the furniture we bought (mostly from Ikea). I have so much storage space now that I really miss my crap back home. I miss bookcases full of books and cabinets full of my art and craft stuff. Now, I can’t even fill up one shelf with the books that I have left. I am itching to go and buy some new ones, but I have plenty of ebooks at the moment that I want to finish. So I am putting that off for now.

I took pics from all four sides of the room so that all angles are visible.

house update 1
From the angle facing the door.

We arranged the TV/sofa lounging area as soon as you enter the room. The chubby hubby wanted a leather sofa but was too cheap to buy the real one so we get the faux leather one from Ikea. I wanted a corner sofabed to prepare for when we have family coming over in a few months when I give birth. But ofcourse, he was the one spending so he got his way. The sofa is pretty sleek with its contemporary lines. I didn’t want something bulky and masculine looking. If I had my way I would have bought the stockholm leather sofa from Ikea. That was really pretty.

We covered the houseshaped mirror with the TV cabinet/shelf. That was an ugly shaped mirror. Then we placed the dining table near the window.

house update 2
The window side of the room

We used the freestanding wardrobe as a divider to block the sleeping area from view when you open the door. What sucks is the backside is unfinished. I am planning to paint it or cover it with those vinyl rolls that you can buy from Ace hardware (no ace hardware here yet so I guess it will take me 10 years to find a shop that sells those vinyl rolls and another 2 to finish the job).

The door beside the entrance is actually a door to the adjoining room. Ofcourse we never open it and I am also planning to cover that up with three big canvasses on top of one another. Or maybe get a custom made frame and cover with fabric. I give this project about 3 years to finish.

 

house update
The side beside the door facing the window

My study table is sandwiched between the dining area and Aria’s play area, although we cannot really contain where she would like to spread out the very few toys she owns. The curtains are courtesy of the previous tenant and although fuchsia isn’t really my color, I would have to do with it for now until I decide on a pair from Ikea (probably). I love this study table from Ikea with the pull out return. Although my desk is quite bare, with just the essentials on top of it (i miss my clutter), I still want to imagine that I will be busy with crafting and sewing and being creative with my hands one of these days. Beside it is my ‘oh too bare’ bookshelf. le sigh.

house update 4
the view from the side of the door

My walls really need some art. I miss my frames. Aria likes to watch her shows (actually just one particular episode from Hi-5) from everywhere- the sofa, her Poang chair from Ikea, the dining table, the study table, the tent, her green chair, the bed… its fun being a kid. While we were in Ikea, the chubby hubby asked me why I haven’t bought any frames yet to decorate the room. I wanted to but deep inside I knew just needed to deal with the walls first…

So there is my house tour. Thought it would take me while to get this post done. But I finally did it. Yay to me!

 

The dilemma that is our wallpaper

As I mentioned in my previous post, we occupy a room in an old villa, in a place I still don’t know the name, in Doha. The room is actually a lot bigger than our previous accommodations- twice as big as the last one and around 1.5 times the studio apartment. It does require a lot of work and one of the main things that I really want to get fixed is the old wallpaper that adorns our walls.

one of the sides of the room
A view of one of the sides of the room.

The pattern is a little outdated (for my taste) and the edges are peeling. The chubby hubby tried to fix it up before we arrived with rugby of all things. Now there are brownish marks where some of the edges were peeling off.

a closer look at the rugby marks and the old design
a closer look at the rugby marks and the old design
House shaped mirror
A weird shaped mirror

There is also this house-shaped mirror on one side whose sides are not actually perfectly parallel. I would really really like to remove it, but I am thinking of just covering it up with a fabric panel or something.

I was initially planning to remove the wallpaper myself, but I am now in my last trimester and the baby is getting bigger and bigger and I am getting bigger and bigger. Looking to hire someone to get it professionally done. I am looking at a really light shade of gray with white edges to paint the entire room with.

Natures gray kitchen by Pure Home
Natures gray kitchen by Pure Home taken from rusticcrafts.com

Something like the above photo, or lighter. But it looks really homey.

I’ll keep everyone updated with this project. Hopefully, Ill get this done before the baby comes.

Retro AC controller
How retro is this? The controller of our AC looks like it came from a long way back.

Sushi Art- the art of eating sushi like peanuts

happy times.

I was craving for sushi the other day and thought of taking my friend Rysh out to dinner to a Japanese restaurant to satisfy the craving and to celebrate her birthday. Why not hit two birds with one stone right? We first thought of trying out ICHO at the Radisson on Sheikh Zayed Road but decided against it because we were both SOOO hungry and looking at their online menu, the prices were waaay above budget that I thought we might go home starving if we go and eat there. We thought of going somewhere close and since Frank hasn’t been to DIFC which was a 5 minute drive away, we all decided to go there and see which restaurant we could try out.

DIFC view from the Al fresco dining area on the second floor

DIFC had two Japanese restaurants in the vicinity. The first one was YO! Sushi, which was located on the second floor and had a beautiful view of the Gate building. It was quite chilly outside and Aria had a really bad cough so we decided to go to Sushi Art which was on the ground floor. It was the first time for both of us to try the place and the interiors boast of typical minimalist contemporary Japanese- with lots of wooden elements, black decor and japanese lanterns.

We ordered the Classic Black Box Platter which was basically a box with 54 pieces of Salmon, Tuna and Shrimp sushi ,Salmon Avocado spring rolls, Mango Rainbow rolls, Cheese Cucumber maki, Spicy Tuna maki, Spicy Tuna Gunkan, Salmon Avocado California rolls and Salmon roll, and an order of Mochi- which included 1 chocolate and 1 strawberry.

The sushi was so good that we couldn’t stop stuffing ourselves. I thought 27 pcs of sushi might be too much for both of us, but we found ourselves with an empty box less than an hour later. We ate them like they were peanuts. My personal favorite was the Spicy Tuna Gunkan and the Mango Rainbow Roll. As for the Mochi, I loved the chocolate flavored one (not a big surprise). I am not sure how mochi’s are suppose to be, but theirs was ice cream filled.

Ice cream filled mochi

I would definitely go back to try their other platter it’s a little bit more pricier, but if it’s as good as their classic box, it would be worth it!

Aria saying ‘where’s my sushi?!’

All pictures taken with Rysh’s iphone 5s.

SushiArt
DIFC
http://www.sushiart.ae

Happy New Year friends!

I had no idea how I’d write my last post for 2013. I suck at summarizing. But here is my 2013 in a nutshell…

JANUARY

went crazy upcycling old jars

Got my replacement Silhouette Cameo… after a LOONG time! Thank you so much Silhouette America!
Adjusting to the whole motherhood thing was hard. Babies are really a handful!

FEBRUARY

How about letters for decorations?

My dad left Dubai for good.
Started with handlettering.

MARCH
Won a dozen cupcakes from maison sucre
Helped my friend make her bridesmaids card

APRIL

Peanut butter cream cake

Eraserheads gave a major concert here but I didn’t get to watch
Got hooked on Candy crush

MAY
Got to taste Jeff de Bruges for the first time
Husband decides to move to a ‘closetless’ room in Satwa

JUNE
Broke my laptop. 😦

JULY
Still without a computer

AUGUST

my first successful tiramisu

Mom buys me a laptop.
Discovered the biggest pizza in Dubai!

SEPTEMBER

taho!

Found success with CHEESECAKE!
Found a(n effective) working solution for our closet dilemma
Made matching dresses for me and Aria

OCTOBER

Ground beef with beans and kangkong

Got a temp job for a month.
Dissapointed with my birthday Macarons from Knightsbridge café
Had my first kaya toast at Ya kun in Ibn Battuta with foodies and bloggers

NOVEMBER

the beautiful lamb chops from Bennigans

Haiyan (Yolanda) hits the Philippines and we all do as much as we can in every way we can
We remember Aria’s birth exactly a year after.
Got extended till April at work.

DECEMBER
Aria’s first birthday party.

Hoping for a busier and more productive 2014! Happy New Year friends!

The one about the Baby proofing

Maaaan, I am a bad parent… I want to blame my husband too so let me rephrase that- WE are bad parents. We haven’t done any baby proofing in our room and Aria has started walking (with a lot of assistance) and standing up, and opening doors and drawers and pulling stuff that she can get her hands on.

I let her crawl on the floor for she has fallen from the bed one time… We both spent a good few hours crying together – me with my guilt and my shame and the pain I want to feel for my daughter and Aria with her shame and embarrassment and I guess pain too… We both had the nicest nap after that. I called my mom right after she fell and when she didn’t pick up, I called my sister in law. She told me that it was normal… Kids fall, ALL THE TIME. She told me her kids fell all of the time too. I thought about my niece and my nephew and tried to think about anything abnormal about them… But I still tried to call my mom. She told me as long as there was no vomiting and no nausea and all that stuff, Aria would be fine. She didn’t have any bumps on her head, so I thought her cries must be more of embarrassment.

When she crawls on the floor she pulls on all the drawers. The other day me and Frank were just talking and we heard something falling and screaming. I saw Aria with the shoe boxes (the Ikea plastic ones) fallen on top of her and I rushed to immediately remove the pile. It wasn’t that heavy, but I was worried that she would have bumped her head on the floor.

happiness from pulling

After that, I thought I really needed to do some baby proofing… so far this is what I have come up with.

masking tape!!!

 

Creating more storage space

This is a dilemma for a lot of people who share apartments here in Dubai. We, for one, are living in a villa and occupying a room without built in storage. And I have lots of stuff. When I say lots, I mean LOTS. Frank gives me a hard time about it ALL THE TIME. But this is me and he has a lifetime to get used to it. 🙂

The best solution that I came up with is to section one wall as a storage area. I saw this solution at my younger brother’s house in Singapore. One wall was covered with a faux wall that has a sliding door and behind it they kept all the crap that they have! I loved it but never really thought I would apply it until we moved to this villa. I also posted about it here.

Here is what we ended up with.

our storages behind a curtain

We created a shelf that has a depth of 60 cm to run the entire length of the wall. We had to make the shelf in two pieces. We installed the shelf at a height of 2.5 M so that we would have plenty of space at the top to store boxes and even our unused suitcases. Then we installed curtains for cover.

We had two of these Ikea wardrobes with fabric sides which went in there. We were also able to fit in our laundry hamper and our ironing basket.

Cheap wardrobe solution from Ikea

There was still space for one 60 cm width bookcase so I put my bookcase at the end to hide some of my crap. 🙂

Here is a peek inside. Don’t want to show the entire thing because its still MESSY! lol

Maybe in a few months we can upgrade with a sliding door, but why bother? We’re all just transients anyway. But I guess it would look nicer. However, this is already a pretty good solution for the lack of storage most of us face. Maybe next time I’d cover the entire height of the wall too for MORE storage.

We didn’t spend more than AED 500 for this solution. The boards amounted to AED 100, the shelves inside were preexisting. I used old Ikea duvet covers for the curtains. Not bad…