Monday, 28 November 2011

Maiden Cay

Recently I went with a bunch of friends to Maiden Cay - a small uninhabited island located off the coast of Port Royal, Kingston, Jamaica. It really is a tiny patch of elevated sand surrounded by the Caribbean sea, but, this makes it an ideal 'getaway' spot for beach parties, snorkeling and sunbathing. The voyage begins at the Morgan's Harbour Hotel & Marina, named after the infamous buccaneer Sir Henry Morgan. The boat cruises through the sparkling sea, past little fishing enclaves, set against the distant backdrop of the beautiful Blue Mountains. What a mesmerizing sight!

Leaving Morgan's Harbour

Little fishing village

Approaching Maiden Cay

Chilling on the beach! - the sea was so warm and relaxing, I didn't want to get out!
The sun is about to set...Time to go

Goodbye little Cay...

Goodbye Sun...

Cotton candy clouds accompany us to shore...

Dining on the deck, surrounded by beauty...

I love my country so much! :-)

Friday, 25 November 2011

Upcoming Christmas Shopping Events!

The Christmas Season is drawing nearer. Christmas is my favourite time of year in Jamaica and I'm already feeling all bubbly inside! :-)
If you are in Jamaica looking for authentic gifts or just want something interesting to do over the next few days, here are some events that you will definitely want to check out:

1) Nakazzi Hutchinson's "Chrysalis" - an exhibition of fine art at Redbones Blues Cafe Nov 11 - Dec 24th, 1 Argyle Road, Kingston 10. I happened to pass by Red Bones over the weekend and I was completely mesmerized by some breathtaking angels, which I later discovered were Nakazzi creations! They are so striking, so life-like, yet surreal! I can't think of a more authentic way to clothe your space for Christmas! Do go and support.


Absolutely breathtaking!

2) Market at the Lawn - Sunday, November 27, December 11 & 18 2011
10 am - 5 pm, on the North Lawn of Devon House, Waterloo Road. The place to find handmade, homemade, Jamaican-made and much more! Be sure to check out the Gallery of West Indian Art booth for exquisite Indian and Caribbean finds!

3) Alemgems 2011 Collection Launch at the Grosvenor Gallery Christmas Fair
1 Grosvenor Terrace, December 3 & 4, 10 am - 6pm. Featuring creative jewelry pieces for men and women!

4) SPACES Dream Bedroom Giveaway - SPACES: "Everything Home, Everything Style" has something exciting in store for the festive season... a massive Dream Bedroom Giveaway promotion from November 11 - December 21, 2011 at their new location on 9-11 Phoenix Avenue. Shop now for a chance to win!

5) Matahari Furniture & Home Accessories has also just announced the arrival of their new Christmas stock. Lots of goodies to get your hands on!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Happy Thanksgiving! - Celebrating with Homemade Pumpkin Pie!

Even though we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Jamaica, I think we can all recognize the fact that we have much to be thankful for in our lives. I personally love celebrations... so if it inspires me, I'll jump on the bandwagon lol... any excuse for a holiday with family and friends! 

With the whole thanksgiving spirit in mind, I decided to try my hand at the pumpkin pie recipe I posted over the Halloween period. See the recipe here. I learned from another blogger - the Nyamist (love the name!) that "...technically speaking what passes for pumpkin here is really kabocha squash", but like her, I decided to give a whirl anyway! I thought Bisquick Mix would be easy to find, but, apparently I was wrong. So I decided to improvise and just try regular pancake mix instead. It actually turned out alright! Yaaay!!! See the before and after pics below:

Fresh from the oven... also did a batch of brownies... I was in a baking mood!

The finished product! Yaaay!

Time to gobble! Yum!
Did anybody else decide to try the recipe??? Let me know. I'd love to hear how it turned out.
Off to eat my pumpkin pie! Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

ART'ical Empowerment Highlights

I had such a great time at ART'ical Empowerment on Saturday. There was such positive energy. It reminded me of why I love Jamaica - the creativity, the untamed spirit, the rich culture... It was so inspiring to see like-minded people coming together to express their point of view and to support local talent. The live music was intense and moving, with a variety of bands that included Raging Fyah, Uprising RootsJah9 and Protoje (Learn more about these musicians by clicking on the links.) There were also a number of craft and food stalls with everything from natural beauty products to jelly coconuts! Thanks to all those who came out to support. Keep following Manifesto Jamaica!

Environmentally responsible beauty products from I-TRAL LIVITY

Check out the beautiful clothing at Aya Wear

See lovely pieces from Mama Yashi's Collection

Monday, 21 November 2011

Restaurant Week Highlights & Reviews

Restaurant Week is over :-( but, It was great. Out of the 5 places listed on my Restaurant Week Wishlist, I managed to do 2, plus 1 that was not on the list, but very good nonetheless. Here are some reviews and photo highlights for you to drool over!

RESTAURANT #1: New Leaf Vegetarian
Location: Lane Plaza, Ligueanea, Kingston, Jamaica
Restaurant Type: Vegetarian Take Out
Special Feature (s): Fresh vegetarian food & juices quickly; fast food alternative
Restaurant Week Category: Nyam & Scram
Dishes: Pepperpot Soup and Doubles
Cost: J$350
Taste: The Pepperpot Soup was delicious. It had pieces of okra which was an unexpected, but welcome surprise. The doubles were somewhat disappointing. I found the wrap to be a little too chewy, but, the chick peas filling was not bad
Service: Good
Ambiance/Decor: As their website says, the decor did reflect the philosophy using natural Jamaican blue mahoe and bamboo for their furniture. However, the Styrofoam packaging was not eco-friendly as the website suggested.
Overall Rating: Fair. I'd go back and try something else.

Sandwiches coupled with my home made limeade - perfect!

Location: 11 Sandringham Avenue, Kingston, Jamaica 
Restaurant Type: Delivery Service 
Special Feature (s): Everything homemade, packaged and delivered with love. Every package is personally addressed to the customer (e.g. Bite Me: Sarah!) and comes with an inspirational quote and witty comments. All the deli meats are from the Jamaican company - Hamilton's Smoke House.
Restaurant Week Category: Nyam & Scram
Dishes: Beef Pastrami and Jerk Chicken Sandwiches and a Sesame Chicken Wrap
Cost: Choice of sandwich or wrap J$280 (RW Special)
Taste: The beef pastrami sandwich was particularly good. I thought the sesame chicken wrap would have come with real chicken in a sesame sauce instead of deli meat, but, the flavour was not bad. The jerk chicken sandwich was also not bad. Each combo came with a Cranberry Wata and a cookie.
Service: Very Good - The delivery guy was very pleasant and helpful.
Ambiance/Decor: N/A
Overall Rating: Good. I thought it was a great combo for J$280. I loved the personal touches, the eco-friendly paper bag packaging, and the fact the the deli meat is supplied by a Jamaican company. I did think the sandwiches were something I could make at home myself, but, it's a great idea for people on the go, who have no time to take a homemade lunch to work. Thumbs up!

RESTAURANT #3: East Japanese Restaurant 
Location: Market Place, 67 Constant Spring Road
Restaurant Type: Japanese Restaurant and Sushi Bar 
Special Feature (s): A wide range of Asian dishes
Restaurant Week Category: Tasty
Dish: East Roll Combo - California Roll, Tuna Roll and Shrimp Roll
Cost: J$2400
Taste: Very tasty; perfect combination of flavours.
Service: Fair. We were a little confused as to who our server was. Different waiters kept coming up to us and one of them was a little over-bearing.
Ambiance/Decor: Trendy, Asian-insired interior.
Overall Rating: Good. The food was attractive and appetizing and the environment was relaxing. I'd definitely go again!

I hope these reviews are helpful! 

Friday, 18 November 2011

Manifesto Jamaica - Festival of ART'ical Empowerment

Those of you who have been following LORE for some time, may recall a note I wrote on Facebook about the event ART'ical Exposure, hosted by Manifesto Jamaica at Bookophilia last summer, 2010. Manifesto|JA is a non-profit youth organization dedicated to youth empowerment and nation building through the Arts and Culture. This year Manifesto Jamaica invites you to the Festival of ART'cal Empowerment at the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts. They've got a terrific line-up of workshops, performances and discussions that start today through Sunday. Expect to see artistes such as Bob Andy, Mutabaruka,Tanya Stephens, Protoje, Raging Fyah, Jah9 and many more!! There will also be lots to buy and try in the Festival Village, for which admission is free! For more information on the event and the organization, check out their website and Facebook Page. Do go and support!

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Loft Living

People, I have an amazing space to share with you. It is soooo delicious! I'd love to be able to tell you where in the world it is... but I have no clue as I found it on a site in a language that I can't understand a word of. lol Anyway, the pictures say it all. It's an incredible loft with an impeccable mix of masculine and feminine elements. The structure of this home is very industrial - stainless steel kitchen surfaces, brick and concrete walls, metal railings, wooden beams and industrial lamps. However, this is complemented by the pink colour palette, soft furnishings, romantic chandelier and intricate details. Eat your heart out!!

Images from Micasa via

I think the grey, white and pink colour combination is working... I don't know if I'd personally use so much pink, but altering that is no problem...What about you? Are you feeling it?

Lofts can often feel cold, but, this place feels airy, bright and cozy... Look at those curtains!

Great conversation layout - Having two small coffee tables is great for when you're entertaining because they can be easily moved for your guest's convenience, wherever they are sitting.

I need a fridge like this in my life!! (Remember Christmas is coming... hehe). It can be any colour... doesn't have to be pink!... Do I sound like I'm begging??! lol

These quirky chairs are saying sit on me Sarah!

These stainless steel counter tops are versatile and super easy to clean, working as a kitchen counter or an eating area.

Can I have a mannequin in my bedroom too? I could plan the next day's outfit, or better yet, sew my outfits!

Such a great combination of textures and materials. Check out the bamboo rafters, the rough wide plank floors, the fluffy rugs, the woven basket and the clean lines of the wardrobe... perfect contrast.

There's so much to comment on in this photo! Those concrete walls are cool and calming... no need for paint! The white vessel sink and mirror frame provide the perfect contrast to the grey walls... and check out those handy, little jewelry frames!

Of course the kiddies were not be forgotten. Have you ever seen a more adorable girl's room! The perfect setting for sweet dreams and happy thoughts!

Loving the vintage elements!... army surplus and Jazz music of the 30's come to mind... 'Heaven, I'm in heaven' :-)
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