Friday, 20 March 2015

Chinese New Year in Malaysia!

After having not spend Chinese New Year for 2 years in a row, I told my boss I really must go home for Chinese New Year this time as I have already missed it twice and I can't bear to miss it again! 

Thankfully bosses approved of me to take leave during the busiest time of the season. I felt really bad to my colleagues of course but if I don't get to go home, I would have quit work anyways so there's no difference to that. 

Prior to going home, work started to get so busy that I didn't have time to fully absorb the fact that I'm going home. And it's a long journey home as well, having to transfer at Osaka and then wait for flight back home, I was exhausted when I arrived. But first thing to do upon arrival is of course to head for food! 

After unpacking my stuff at home, next thing was straightaway head to hometown. Food galore ahead!

Giant curry bun

Sea cucumber and chicken stew

Fish head curry

Best of both! 

Coconut shake / ice blended

It's ironic that the weather was so hot yet the tissue box's picture is of winter snow.
Was craving for Niseko's weather right then!

So so good! Prawn sambal and porridge

Luggage back to Niseko was just full of food

Last meal before my flight, my favourite Pan Mee!

Mum's homemade Pineapple tarts! Unwillingly shared a few with roommates and promptly devoured the rest. 

Overall, CNY was slow and relaxing for me. Mainly I did nothing except eating and just hanging around with family. I missed this even though there's really nothing exceptionally special that all of us did together. Being together is good enough for me.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

66th Sapporo Snow Festival

The annual Sapporo Snow Festival is a big event and millions flock over to Sapporo over the course of 1 week just to see the amazing snow sculpture. There's this long stretch of garden in the middle of the city and that's where all these snow sculptures were, and also stalls after stalls of delicious food sold! 

For guests that are staying in Niseko during this period of time, we always recommend guest to head over to Sapporo for a day trip just to witness these snow sculptures. And it's so easy to get to Sapporo from Niseko, you can take a public bus or hop on the train and takes you straight to the city.

Since it's such a huge event, I visited it every year and it's been 3 times now. Frankly I wasn't interested in the snow sculptures anymore, I firstly hunt for food when I arrived!

The most talked about snow sculpture this year has got to be this Star Wars one!

Giant beer mug with the Sapporo TV Tower behind.

Reminded me of my mum and grandma's addiction to Candy crush!

Here comes the food stalls!

Can't miss my favourite Tokyo Tonteki. 
Thank to my friends for willingly being dragged by me to dine here~

Alongside with the Sapporo Snow Festival, Otaru also has a light festival which there will be multiple candles along the canal, it looked really romantic in the evening! 

But it was really too cold for us and we stayed for just a bit before catching the next train back. 
Make sure to wear super warm clothes if you are planning to hang around longer. 

Cheers to the 66th snow festival! 

Monday, 16 March 2015

Living in Niseko during February

Early February was so quiet where we wondered where all the people in the village went. At one point we were so free that we really had nothing much to do, phone didn't ring the whole day. During December, the phone rang non-stop!

But we get to relax only for about a week in early February, after that things went uphill and finally reached the peak during Chinese New Year time. Best part was I was relaxing back at home in the sunny Malaysia during CNY. 

And why do I miss home while I'm in Niseko but when I'm back to Malaysia, I missed Niseko so much? It's this love hate thing that I still can't get around with. Also the drastic difference in weather made me so grumpy when I was back home too.

Anyways, February was also the month we realized how time flies, most of the staff will leave by end of March including me, so we try to hang out as often as we can.

Baking session with colleagues in one of the empty guest room.
Feels so good using the kitchen as if it's ours!

Baked very very successful banana cake! Got compliments from other colleagues that tried :)
I'm totally bragging but I really was reluctant to share it and could finish all of it on my own!

Also had another baking session at friend's house. We baked peanut cookies!

Brought back peanuts all the way from Malaysia just to make peanut cookies with friend!



Cookies were so so good though, brought some for colleagues and they loved it too! 

 Roommate cooked 2 types of korean toppokki! (Spicy and non-spicy)

Oden with roommates again. Easy to cook and yummy!

Unlimited lamb barbeque with colleagues! So delicious and I really missed it..
Will visit one last time again before I leave Niseko for sure!

After I came back to Niseko after CNY, one of the lovely Malaysian repeat guest knew that I missed Milo so they brought all that for me all the way from Malaysia ;)

We chatted during last summer when they were here and I mentioned to them that I really missed Malaysian food. They remembered and brought this for me when they came back again, I was speechless when they gave it to me! Such sweet people really made all the hard work worth it. This is also especially special to me because I didn't manage to bring Milo back from Malaysia as my luggage was already overweight, and to receive this I just felt soooooo blessed!! Milo is my absolute favourite drink since I was young, other country's Milo tastes different compared to Malaysia's! Sounds odd but it's really true!

Enjoying my Maggi for lunch break!

 To balance out my unhealthy eating habits, oats every morning for breakfast plus any random fruit found in the staff refrigerator (Collected from guest's leftovers)

The same guest that left me the Milo and Magee also gave me pineapple tarts! 
Oh, really reminds me of home...

Since I'm not a fan of drinking water, I try to drink more tea instead. 
I have so many different kinds of teabags lying around and it's time for me to finish it all.

I've never seen such interesting teas before??
Best flavour would be the Green Tea with Orange flavour and lotus flower, second would be the Orange and Cinnamon flavoured. 

Interesting design! Since Sakura is coming soon so most of the brand will spam Sakura designs or Sakura flavoured food / drinks. 

Brought this all the way back from Malaysia for colleagues to try and I regretted sharing them cause it's so good! (Selfish much..)

Folded cranes to wish a colleague to get well soon!

End product! 1000 cranes folded by all colleagues.
Took almost 2 weeks to complete these though. Assembling the cranes took an incredibly long amount of time too.

 Valentines day gift shared by female colleagues for the male colleagues.
I'm still not used to the idea of Valentines day in Japan where girls will be the one to give gifts / confess to guys. Then it's the guy's turn on White Day (14 March) Just still so strange for me. 

 Night skiing after work!

February is over now, I'm having mixed feelings for March as I'm happy to go travelling in Tokyo yet I'm so sad to leave a job that I love. I'll be doing quite a lot of travelling from April onwards yet I feel a bit unsettling to not have any plans for my new job. Gosh. But I don't wanna think too much about looking for new job yet as I have loads of planning and research to do for my upcoming holidays!