There comes a time in every Daisybutter girl’s calendar where there are dates upon dates booked in and that time was, for me, this week.
Shrove Tuesday, Galentine’s Day, Valentine’s Day and Lunar New Year celebrations all fell in the past seven days and I am oh so ready for a nap. It’s safe to say I’m glad I shunned London Fashion Week this season… Except we’re out again today for another New Year dinner (Chinese culture basically means we gather and we eat at any given occasion) and I also need to food-shop and get ready for work tomorrow. That said, it’s been a good old week for celebrating and I’ve been oh so excited to sit down and write away about it all!
I’ve also been taking some time (Thursday evening and the morning of 年初一, the first day in the Lunar calendar) to write a few posts ahead of schedule for the blog. I’ve been finding it really productive to work a week or two ahead of myself to make sure my posts are as polished as can be! Next week’s content is a real mixed bag, and then it’s my birthday week the one after, so expect plenty of birthday content, reflective pieces and other posts of the like.
Our weekend has been SO good: dog walks in the winter sun (hopefully some of the last of it!), a cheeky McDonald’s breakfast, oat milk coffees in bed, a marathon The Sims 4 session, gathering as a family, a mini vlog clip from Dad at our house in Malaysia, and getting to grips with ‘Young Sheldon’.
I mentioned over on Twitter that one of my personal favourite pre-CNY rituals is that of purchasing new clothes in which to celebrate. I picked up these F&F ankle grazer jeans, which I can confirm are of incredible quality (think a cross between the Topshop Leigh and Jamie jeans) with the sweetest let hem, as well as this beautiful Topshop bed shirt that I’m wearing out to dim sum today.
Some of the other traditional rituals that we follow in the Chai household, UK division, include: a hair trim before the festivities kick off, bathing in pomelo leaves, hanging paper decorations upside down, hanging red lanterns about the house, ensuring the house is prim and tidy as no rubbish can be taken out on the first day of the year, and a dinner that ticks off superstitions and traditions (noodles for longetivity, etc.).
Pancake Day, A Recipe for Future Weekends
I think I’d be lying if I said Pancake Day wasn’t one of my highlights of the entire year. An excuse to eat sweeter-than-sweet goods at any given point in the day? Sign me up! Though I frequently order buttermilk pancakes with blueberries and ALL THE SYRUP, we opted for a vegan recipe this year and I’m oh so down for eating it every single weekend. We added raw cacao, blueberries and raspberries; what did you opt for this year?
- 1 cup oats
- 1 cup plant-based milk (we used soya)
- 1 ripe banana
- Coconut oil to fry
- 1½ cups coconut sugar
- Plus, your toppings of choice!
- Um, mix all ingredients together and pan-fry?
Like I mentioned previously, Harvey and I celebrated Valentine’s Day at home this year. We’re not really for those set menus they give you – even more so as vegetarians! – and I’m not great in busy environments lately. So, we popped to Tesco and stocked up on our favourite vegetables and made homemade pizzas! I went for aubergines, a little bit of garlic, jalapeños, peppers, red onion and tomatoes, while Harvey had mozzarella, basil, peppers, jalapeños and red onion. And it absolutely hit the spot!
My sister celebrated the evening with her best friends and I just had to share with you how adorable it was that the Nando’s staff were handing out roses for the singletons visiting that evening. How cute?! (Pro tip for next year…)
Chinese New Year
Quite incredibly, I’ve managed to completely forget to take any photos this weekend, so you’ll have to bear with me (I’ll update this with a snippet from Sunday if I manage to capture anything!). Our New Year celebrations always feel quite homely and similar year-to-year: the first day is a feast with the immediate family, followed by another with the extended family. We headed over to Bang Bang Oriental this year (SO chaotic) and then today, we’re out getting dim sum over at another restaurant. For the record, there isn’t really any getting drunk on New Year’s on the Lunar calendar, it’s all quite tradition heavy and I absolutely love it! In Hong Kong, we celebrated with lion dances, poon choi, paying respect to our ancestors and more, but it’s often a downplayed edition here.
Links I’ve Loved:
- ASOS launched their own activewear range, ASOS 4505, and it actually looks pretty great! Seamless yoga leggings for £25? Totally here for it.
- This article on The Cut about digital influencers was a really insightful read.
- Liv and Charlotte launched a podcast and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to it as I powered through work. ‘The Fringe of It’ is for the twenty-something girl navigating life and it feels like sitting in on a conversation with friends. Loved it!
- I secretly love reading Valentine’s Day blog posts every year and this one on Simply Abbi was one of my favourites. Having written my own ‘Lessons in Love’ post a few years ago, this one was a dream to read and nod along to.
- In another chapter of ‘Marzia makes Mish jealous’, Marzia visited Japan as a guest of Sanrio (I know, I die) and shared photos from her trip.
- These photos on Alix’s blog are bloody incredible. I’m totally going to look into shooting on film in 2018.
- Still haven’t dipped your toe into Glossier waters? Lily’s round-up post is a comprehensive review of all that’s she’s tried from their collection and serves as a great way to see what’s worth it and what isn’t.
- Finally, if you’re heading into London anytime soon, these veggie and vegan ‘quick’ eat spots are worth bookmarking.