food & drink · london · my life

Yum Cha, Museums and Pandas

Over the last four days I’ve been entertaining a friend who came to visit me all the way from Sweden. It was my first time meeting her face-to-face, but as we’ve been talking for years it was as if we’d simply not seen each other for a handful of months. Sadly, she had to fly back home today, but whilst she was here we both had such an amazing time. She’s hoping to study at the same university as me so hopefully I’ll see her again next summer if I don’t get the chance to hop over to Stockholm before then. (I’m not sure if it’ll be wise to brave their winter; living in London for two years has softened me against the cold…)

Cute things from Sweden!
She brought me a really early Christmas present. The tea-strainer is so awesome! There was also a little cupcake necklace, but I’ve been wearing that non-stop…

We visited the British Museum twice (and still didn’t get more than 1/4 of the way around…), went to the Natural History Museum, walked past Big Ben and Parliament, bankrupt ourselves at Camden and Bricklane, cried over cute stuff in Paperchase and Chinatown, and on several occasions nearly ate ourselves into a coma. image

Our last lunch together in BobaJam, before the sad journey to Gatwick. I'm really happy I got to show my friend amazing food she'd never tried before; some of which I'd never tried either. Whilst I'm a bubble-tea addict, I'd never had honey toast/brick toast before. I'll definitely be having it again, though. It was absolutely delicious. (♥  A ♥ ) We both went for the Azuki bean and Matcha Ice-Cream toast, with Chocolate bubble tea.
Our last lunch together in BobaJam, before the sad journey to Gatwick. I’m really happy I got to show my friend amazing food she’d never tried before; some of which I’d never tried either. Whilst I’m a bubble-tea addict, I’d never had honey toast/brick toast before. I’ll definitely be having it again, though. It was absolutely delicious. (♥ A ♥ ) We both went for the Azuki bean and Matcha ice-iceam toasts, with chocolate bubble tea.

More picture spam and food porn photos beneath the cut. image (Plus my haul from my new favourite shop, which I hope I’ll be able to try out now I have a long wait until class starts/the boyfriend returns from home).

Some highlights from the four days, but not in chronological order. It’s almost as my friend and I were separated at birth. For me, she’s the perfect person to go to a museum with as we both read EVERYTHING there is… hence the barely seeing even 1/4 of what there is on display in the British Museum, despite spending over 10 hours in there.

Adorable tea set at the British Museum
I really wish these weren’t a museum exhibit, and that they were sold in the shops. Aren’t they so pretty?!

Pretty vases in the British Museum

Stamps in the British Museum
I loved the patterns on these old stamps. I might try making my own with similar designs…

We didn’t read so much in the Natural History Museum. Partly due to being hyper a little hyper (the coffee from breakfast kicked in a little late), and partly because it was so busy that there was no where to stand. The press of people meant we had to shuffle along continuously. Still, we had we shared a lot of giggles at the exhibits.

Whales and Dolphins in the Natural History Museum

At the Natural History Museum
Did he fall, or was he pushed?!

Prior to the Natural History Museum, we went to the Brick Lane and Old Spitalfields Markets (having gone to Camden the previous morning). I had to stop myself from buying every other thing I saw (there were some really beautiful wooden and leather chests, and some really cosy looking knitted sweaters), but the awesome street-art was useful distraction.

Brick Lane Street Art
Just one of the amazing murals at Brick Lane. So cool!
I couldn't stop myself buying this little pot basket for £3.
I couldn’t stop myself buying this little pot basket for £3.

We went for yum-cha in Chinatown and stuffed ourselves silly with jasmine tea and dim sum one lunch time. We had prawn dumplings too, as well as rice with chicken and mushrooms, and prawn cheung fun…

Dim Sum!

Lotus Bean Buns

We both share an obsession for pandas, cats, owls, cupcakes, and really adorable/cute things, as well as a love for the same Korean pop bands. That resulted in us buying the same panda sweaters (mine in blue, hers in green), phone charms, and owl purses. Oops… (It’s a good thing we live so far apart). I also got some cupcake key covers, a cute little Miffy the rabbit pen, and an owl t-shirt.

Cute clothes~
The sweater is bigger on me than I thought it would be (being small isn’t as brilliant as it seems) but I still love it. This will probably join the list of sweaters I’ve worn until they fall apart.

Kitty phone charm

For candy coloured nails...
I’m a sucker for pastel nail polish. Especially if said nail polish is reduced to £1 a bottle…
More food!
Some foodie goodies from Chinatown. Instant tofu, Taro Milk Tea, Black Sesame Tea, and Strawberry Mochi. ♥

After saying goodbye to her at the airport and fighting back some tears on the train back into London, I decided to pop by a new shop called Tiger that’s opened on Tottenham Court Road. I’d seen a really small version in Spain when I was there for geology fieldwork. They’re a Danish store, and I think the best way to describe them would be like IKEA, but without the large furniture. I could live in IKEA, given the chance, so naturally it was love at first sight when I went inside. I had to stop myself from buying everything, but managed to leave without picking up one of everything.

Goodies from Tiger
They sell a wide range of things; Stationary, Herbs and Spices, Confectionery, Tableware, Cooking Utensils and Pans, Headphones, Ornaments…
They have their own brand of blu-tak with the name ‘Elefantsnot’ which I found really amusing.
Clever little cake frosting tools
Don’t these look awesome! I picked up a set for my mum as well. Hopefully I can try them out in the weeks.

After four days of fun, though, I think I’ll have to let my bank account recover until classes start again. Despite wanting to buy everything cute I see, I usually manage to stop myself and I’m a pro-budgeter, so I luckily don’t have to stress. Thankfully, I have food to last over a month, and I’m planning on keeping myself occupied by baking and crafting. I rescued all my old card-making and scrap-booking stuff from home, so when I pick up the old table my grandparents found in their shed, I’ll have somewhere to work. I also need to start running again. I’ve been a little lazy this past month…

However, first things first; sleep and good lie-in.

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