Food · General · Reading

Sweet Snapshot Sunday #2

I was planning on making this thing a regular occurring on this blog, but I’ve been too busy to blog lately! Work has been hectic – but productive – and I’m catching up on books and shows that I’ve been wanting to indulge in. This weekend I got my first guilt-free breather in a long time, and what better way to celebrate than with some dessert?

Carre Chocolate
Carre Chocolate
Plaisir Sucree
Plaisir Sucree
Columbian Chocolate and Salter Caramel Macarons
Colombian Chocolate and Salted Caramel Macarons

The above treats are all courtesy of Ladurée. The Carre Chocolat and the Plaisir Sucree were indulgent layers of sweet, savory chocolate mousse, cake and the soft macaron meringue base, though the difference between the two is that the first is made with dark chocolate, and the second has crusty praline. Absolutely delightful. I swooned with every bite. The macarons are quite amazing too; of all the Ladurée macarons I’ve tried, salted caramel and Colombian chocolate are definitely my favourite; the flavours are so intense!

I also treated myself to some clothes, and… as always, I couldn’t resist the temptation of buying a new book, so I got The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin. Has anyone read it? It looks so interesting!

How’s your weekend going? What are you currently reading? Have you tried Ladurée before? 😀

Writing

Happy International Day of Chocolate!

It doesn’t feel like it’s been a year since I made a post like this one, but the 13th of the September has come around again and I would not be a true chocoholic if I didn’t blog about it and celebrate it in style. I wasn’t so extravagant last year, merely picking up some old favourites from the grocery store close to my home, but this year I sort of splurged… and not only on chocolate.

This year’s International Chocolate Day was a little extra special because two of my coworkers turned out to be chocoholics, and I was able to share my excitement with someone who truly understood! It also helps that one of them brought a box of yummy assorted chocolates to the office. 😉 But I still needed my fix though! So after work I went out and bought the following Lindt bars. My favourite of the three by far is the Vanilla Almond. I practically swooned when I bit into it.

Nothing makes me happier than finding new kinds of chocolate. Those three bars are absolutely delicious!
Nothing makes me happier than finding new kinds of chocolate. Those three bars are absolutely delicious!

Continue reading “Happy International Day of Chocolate!”

General · Writing

Hello. My name is Zeinab.

nameThat’s my official name on paper, the name I sign my credit card purchases with, the name I give when somebody wants to list me down for something; however, I go by a different name among my inner circles – Zen. In a way it feels like having a double identity. Formally I’m Zeinab, a quiet, reserved girl who never toes the line and stays behind her books. Informally I’m Zen, a clumsy dork who enjoys childish things and eats more chocolate than is healthy.

My parents gave me the first name that occurred to them. Maybe if they had slept on it instead of naming me within the hour of my birth, they would’ve realized I’m not much of a Zeinab. It’s not that I dislike it, but I’m just not sure if it suits me. To be honest, I don’t even know what other name I would’ve chosen for myself instead, but I would’ve definitely preferred something less common. It’s a bit discomfiting when one out of 10-20 girls bears my name… at least where I live. If you stand on a crowded street and call that name, you will be sure to turn the heads of a considerable number of girls.

What does it mean? Zeinab is an Arabic name that stands for “Daddy’s precious jewel” or “a fragrant plant”, though my parents didn’t choose it for its meaning – even though dad did spoil me a lot and mum did make sure I always smelled nice – but rather because it’s the name of an important historical character. It’s been also said that Zeinabs are associated with chubby, rosy cheeks, so I guess that part hits the mark, haha. How do you pronounce it? Zay-nab. Incidentally, my new “identity” came about because my little cousin found it difficult to pronounce it and took to calling me “Zen”. I didn’t mind it; in fact, I felt more at home with it. My friends thought it was cool, and the name stuck and expanded to include variations like Zenny and ZenZen. Some people called me ZeeZee Za Zombie (and still do)… but that’s a story for another time. 😉

Food · General · Writing

Don’t mess with my pizza.

That’s just wrong on so many levels. Pizza is the kind of sustenance that you need to get right. You just can’t give the client something they didn’t order and expect them to go along with it! I was craving pizza today, and even though I have some ready-made pizza dough at home that I could’ve layered with some toppings and stuck in the oven, there’s something “special” about ordering a pizza and having it delivered to your home steaming and ready for eating.

I went with an extra cheesy Margherita and waited impatiently until it arrived. When the delivery boy, I snatched it a little too eagerly out of his hands, paid him and sent him off on his way. It was just me and my pizza! I got a tall glass of Pepsi and opened the box, only to be met with disappointment.

What was supposed to be a large Margherita ended up being a vegetarian pizza that looked anything but large. The next few moments were spent in contemplation. I could:

a) call the pizza place and demand a new pizza.

b) call the pizza place, demand a refund and make my own pizza.

c) just settle for my vegetarian pizza. Continue reading “Don’t mess with my pizza.”

General · Inanity · Writing

The roads are a safer place without me.

drivingDriving terrifies me. There I said it. I’m scared of getting behind the wheel and navigating the streets… especially the streets in Lebanon. They are such a disaster. No rules anywhere, motorcycles crisscrossing all over the place, no street lights, cars cutting you off without so much as a warning, people who choose to walk on streets instead of sidewalks… the list is endless.

However, you’ll be surprised to learn that I do actually have a driving license, even if I don’t put it to use. My parents are always nagging me to get a car because they don’t want me riding cabs everyday, and they always end their argument with, “If you never wanted to drive, then why on Earth did you go and get a license?” In fact, my mother said that to me just this morning, which is incidentally what prompted me to write about this.

Well, to be honest, I did want to drive at first, but my driving adventures weren’t really encouraging. Continue reading “The roads are a safer place without me.”

Food · Writing

Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast.

“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – the White Queen, Alice in Wonderland.

White-Queen_Alice-in-WonderlandThe White Queen knows what she’s talking about, that really is a good habit to practice. On days that are exceptionally bleak, it helps to have some positives to hold on to during the day. I don’t usually have breakfast, so let’s pretend the White Queen said lunch instead of breakfast, shall we?

1. The day will come when I don’t have to wake up at ungodly hours of the morning. It’s no secret that I love to sleep, and who doesn’t really? The thing I dread the most about my day job is dragging myself out of my warm bed when sleep still has a vice-grip on me. It’s very unlikely, but I do dream of the day when I’m leading a cosy enough life that allows me to stay in bed however long I want. One can dream. Continue reading “Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast.”

Inanity · Writing

I see dead people.

Well… not exactly, but I watched The Sixth Sense the other day and that’s the first title that came to mind. The movie reminded me of a little incident that happened to me when I was but a wee eight-year-old. Most people don’t believe me when I retell it, but it’s the kind of incident that you wouldn’t forget about in a hurry.

Today’s daily prompt asks us to write an “adventure” and let the readers guess the ending. This incident does qualify as somewhat of an adventure, especially as it has supernatural elements in it. That may immediately cause you to question the credibility of this story, and maybe you would like to ask me if maybe my imagination was acting up. But for now, I’ll just tell you what happened.  Continue reading “I see dead people.”

General · Reading · Writing

A room I’ve always dreamed of.

Kids usually dream of owning big houses with swimming pools when they grow up, occupying awesome jobs like astronauts and firefighters and detectives, they dream of the day when they’d have a swimming pool in their backyard which they could jump into from their bedroom window… so compared to them, I’m definitely a little under-ambitious. Well okay I still would like that swimming pool.

I, however, the little bookworm that I was, always dreamed of having my own personal library. Along the years my reading tastes might have changed, my job choice changed, my personality changed… but my desire for a library remained strong and consistent. I can picture it clearly as if I were actually holed up in it.

Ha. I wish. Continue reading “A room I’ve always dreamed of.”

Food · General · Writing

Lebanon in a Nutshell

For something different today, I’ve decided to talk about my country – the little place called Lebanon located in the Middle East on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. It’s pretty obscure, and more often than not, when I tell people I’m Lebanese they backtrack and say, “You’re a lesbian?”, upon which I have to pull out a map and show them where Lebanon is.

We really do exist!

Travel brochures will tell you that Lebanon is the Paris of the Middle East, but I’m about to give you the nitty-gritty version, complete with our crazy drivers, famous foods and ridiculous expressions.

Continue reading “Lebanon in a Nutshell”

Food · General · Inanity · Writing

Happy October!

I love the colours of Autumn. So pretty!
(Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been waiting for this month for quite some time, it being the tenth month and all that. October is my favourite month of the whole year, and that’s not only because it’s my birthday month. 😉 Why do I like October? Here are some of the reasons:

1. It marks the start of Autumn. No more stickiness and humidity and hot weather. Just cool breezes and yellowing leaves and overall a much, much nicer weather.

2. It’s the time to break out cool jackets and comfy plush robes and fuzzy slippers, and bundle up in warm blankets without worrying about waking up in a sweaty mess in the morning… especially if you, like me, cannot sleep without blankets.

Continue reading “Happy October!”