Easter Family Vacation In London

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Self service apartment (sitting room)

Self-service apartment (sitting room)

It looks like I have fallen off the blogosphere! But no, I was away in London for an Easter family vacation and just got back. It was a wonderful vacation together as a family, just relaxing, enjoying food and having lots of fun chatting, laughing and playing cards. Nothing could be better than that. Wish it has been a lot longer!

We stayed in the same place as we did the last trip, at a lovely apartment at Canary Wharf. It’s a much cheaper way to a nice holiday in an expensive place like London. Check out my post on that at Cheaper And More Fun Way to Family Vacation in London if you ever thought of visiting London and not too sure where to go for a cheaper stay. It is a self-service apartment and very spacious and clean for £100 a night (if you book earlier). I like that Tesco Express is just a few meters right across the road. We bought all our bottled water there as London tap water is hard and difficult to drink. There’s also a cash machine outside Tesco just  in case you run out of cash.

Self-service apartment (kitchen)

Self-service apartment (kitchen)

The kitchen is well equipped for baking and cooking. The fridge, together with the freezer, is big. It is floor to ceiling height. We bought food from China Town and also from the Tesco Express to cook and bake there, especially for breakfast or when we are hungry. It’s very expensive to eat out every meal. You can save a lot of money cooking yourself, especially if you have a big family. Eating out for a family of 4 can easily cost you more than £50. If you need more plates, forks and spoons, you can easily get disposable ones from Tesco Express.

Vacation London (king size bed)

Vacation London (king size bed)

The bed is king size bed. Can easily sleep 3 people of my size. I have to leave you to guess my size….*big grin*. There are lots of space on the floor in the bedroom and sitting room just in case you want to accommodate more people. Just bring fleece blankets along if it’s winter.

There’s also a washing machine that comes with dryer, so you don’t need to bring a lot of clothing along or bring a lot of dirty clothing back. You can also do the ironing there if you need to. Hair dryer is also provided.

Didn’t manage to take pictures of all the food that I cooked there. Managed to get 2 here.

Stir fry prawns and chives

Stir fry prawns and chives

We love the Chinese chives fried with eggs. Add some big prawns, everyone enjoyed it for breakfast. There were no elaborate seasonings. Just olive oil, garlic and sea salt. It was simple, quick, delicious and healthy.

Delicious seafood noodles

Delicious seafood noodles

Had this seafood instant Korean noodles for our last breakfast before we left London. No vegetables left to add to this dish. My youngest daughter must be secretly happy as she always dislikes vegetables. The fish balls were SO good!

refreshing and delicious tzatziki

refreshing and delicious tzatziki

We had tzatziki everyday, with cucumber sticks. That’s our favourite snack every evening when we play cards together. Everyone likes it. I learned to eat it from a friend. I actually made it last night. Homemade is still the best. Will blog about it soon. Tzatziki is actually a mixture of Greek yoghurt, cucumber, salt, olive oil, garlic and vinegar. It’s very good served with bread.

BPA-free M&M water bottle

BPA-free M&M water bottle

I really regretted that I didn’t buy the BPA-free water bottles when I went to M&M store (near China Town) the last trip. I just have to make sure I get them this time. But sadly, they don’t have all the colours, only green ones left, not the colour that I want. In the end, I only bought one. It’s a 1 litre bottle, good when I go for a shorter badminton session. I have 1.5 litre BPA-free bottle which is too big especially during the winter months. Well, hope to get a different colour one the next trip.

Just in case you are not aware what BPA is, it is Bisphenol A. It is an industrial chemical that has been used to make certain plastics (polycarbonate plastics) and resins since the 1960s. It is often used in containers, bottles and even toys. It is also often used to coat the inside of cans as in canned food. BPA can seep into food or beverages which can pose a health risk. So, if you are concerned, go for BPA-free plastics or use glass, stainless steel or porcelain containers, trays and bottles.

The family vacation was great but then I returned home to a FREEZING cold house!! I turned down the heater to minimum when we went off to save electricity and gas, so you can imagine the condition especially when it was snowing while we were away. It was just most miserable as everywhere and everything in the house was SO cold to the touch, including the bed and blankets. We made a mistake to arrive home late in the evening. It was too late to go out and hang around somewhere warm. It took many hours to heat up the house even with all the heaters on. Imagine trying to sleep on a freezing cold bed? For once I think prison beds are probably more comfortable!

Well, so there went my Easter Family Vacation in London. All of us wish that it was much longer! Back to reality again. The days ahead will be very busy with visitors from home and more travelling. Just going to be exciting! I do hope you are enjoying your days, not forgetting healthy food and healthy lifestyle. I just can’t wait to get back to badminton. I think it’s the best exercise in the world! It’s because it’s indoor and can be played throughout the whole year and it’s not boring as you have friends to keep you going. It’s a great way to warm up the body.

Til then see you in my next post!

Quote of the day……

“Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”

- Joshua J. Marine

Keep Learning Keep Smiling

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13 Comments

suituapui  on April 2nd, 2013

Ahhhh!!!! Must KIV this. Hope to go over to London sometime…

Jeannie  on April 2nd, 2013

It’s always nice to go on vacations especially with better with family members:D And getting withdrawal symptoms at the end of the vacations is always a must lol!

somewhere in singapore  on April 2nd, 2013

Mary, u’re back!!! Soooooooooooooooooooooooooo missssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

Angie@Angie's Recipes  on April 2nd, 2013

I too love a good shrimp and chives stir-fry! Glad that you had a great time in London with your family.

claire  on April 3rd, 2013

Hi Mary!! Hope you had a great time in London… now after reading this, it would be a good idea to drop by London for a couple of nights if we do not want to drive around Scotland…well, no definite plans yet.. as you said, we have to book earlier to get cheap rates, right?
I guess we have to stick to our original plans.. :)
Looking forward to the trip… hope we won’t be troubling you too much.. :)

Cheah - No Frills Recipes  on April 3rd, 2013

I can see that you had a great holiday with your family. Will certainly KIV this apartment should I visit London again.

Mary  on April 5th, 2013

@suituapui - Hope you can remember. But if not, just remember to ask me :D

@Jeannie - So amused that you said withdrawal symptoms is a must….haha :D

@somewhere in singapore - Awwww……you are always sooooooooooo sweet, Sharon! :D Love you!

@Angie@Angie’s Recipes - Thanks very much, Angie! I’m back to eating a lot of shrimps :D

@claire - Yes, one day you must go for a holiday in London. It’s quite an interesting place to visit but not to live there though. Yes, over here, everything seems to be cheaper if you book earlier. Looking much forward to meeting up with you soon! :D

@Cheah - No Frills Recipes - Yes, family holiday is always the best. I’m sure you agree too :D

Sophie  on April 5th, 2013

I have missed your lovely recipes too! But we need a break from time to time, don’t we?? That apartment looks splenid!!

thanks for sharing with us all! :) xxx

Mistletoe  on April 6th, 2013

Sounds like you jad an enjoyable, relaxing vacation. When I travel with my whole family, I don’t mind taking it slow and just enjoy spending time together in a new place. Cards? I see you guys have exhausted Taboo. Haha. Or someone memorised all the cards. Lol. Hope your place has warmed up now and that you’re not still sleeping in a cold bed. Have a great weekend!

mycookinghut  on April 9th, 2013

Definitely a good idea to rent an apartment. Which website do you usually use? I will next time advise my family to rent an apartment rather than staying at a hotel.

Caroline Taylor  on April 11th, 2013

I’ve never rented an apartment and always end up in a hotel. Sounds like you had a good time. I shall have to look in to apartments next time I go.

Mary  on April 11th, 2013

@Sophie - Awww…….so happy to hear that you missed my recipes. But ya, I have been just busy lately. I think it’s better to blog less than to lose the joy of blogging by forcing myself to blog. Totally agree with you that we do need a break from time to time :D

@Mistletoe - Oh yes, relaxing and yet crazy holiday…hehe. Taboo?….haha. We need you to be here to play with us :D

@mycookinghut - You can check it out at http://www.laterooms.com/en/hotel-reservations/256686_city-nites-london-canary-wharf-london.aspx. I prefer this type of holiday than staying in the hotel :D

@Caroline Taylor - Yes, try self-service apartment. I find it’s more fun :D

Cookie  on April 17th, 2013

Good to see your London vacation pix!

I am not the Canary Wharf type cos it is too singapore! Ha it must be just me feeling that way!!!

Just curious - what keeps u busy in London?

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