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Friday Finds ☆ Celejor Chocolatier & Bake Shop in Mumbai

May 22, 2014

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All the photos on this post were taken with a camera on iPod4 and edited with VSCO Cam.

Celejor, a bake shop and chocolatier, seems a very popular patisserie chain in Mumbai. Celejor has stores everywhere in the city, so if you have been in Mumbai even for a while, I’m sure you have seen them around.

I learned about Celejor for the first time at the beginning of my stay in Mumbai thanks to my friend. She said she had to plan a birthday party for her daughter shortly after she had arrived in Mumbai, but she didn’t know where to order a cake from. Someone recommended her to go to Celejor, so she did and was very pleased with the cake.

Later I have several other expat friends telling me that they liked Celejor for the taste as well as reasonable prices. One of my expat friends served Celejor sweets and chocolate at her place and that made me want to go to Celejor to buy some for myself. You can see how she served the sweets at her place here. If you need a cake for a special occasion, they can accept your cake order up to a day prior to your need, so if you are in a rush or need a cake with a short notice, Celejor is a good option for you. Celejor delivers as well.

Celejor’s Menu can be seen on burrp page. Click here to view Celejor’s menu.

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Celejor Mumbai05

Celejor Mumbai

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

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Celejor Almond Loaf and Palmiers have become one of my favorite snacks…

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If you are expats or traveling in Mumbai and were to try local Indian sweets, I recommend going to Celejor. My Dutch friend says her favorite Indian sweets are these green pistachio sweet called Pista Katli.

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Recently I ordered a cake with a print of the Newcastle United emblem for my husband. It was fun to have it and delicious. Most importantly my husband liked the cake! The Newcastle United logo photo was printed on a thin sugar sheet. This is a less expensive option for a design cake compared to design cakes made with marzipan.

newcastle united cake


Shop No. 1, Oxford Center
Shahid Bhagat Singh Rd, Colaba
Mumbai, MH 400005
Phone: 022 2287 2733
Fax: +91 22 2287 2734

Shop No. 4, West View
S.V. Road, Santacruz West
Phone: 022 2605 9513

Pali Naka
Shop No. 1, Lourdes Haven Building
Pali Naka, Bandra West, Mumbai
Phone: 022 2604 2410

Bandra West Chapel Road
Shop No 7, Pearl Heaven
86 Chapel Road, Bandra West, Mumbai
Phone: 022 2651 3681

47, Georgian House, Opposite Dominos
Next To Living Room, Lady Jamshedji Road
Mahim, Mumbai 400016
Phone: 022 4917 6443

Wednesday Wall2Wall ☆ Dutch Design Meets India

May 20, 2014

Dutch Meets India Design

This is my Dutch friend’s home in Mumbai. I’ve had a privilege to know Rachel thanks to my middle daughter as she has been in the same kindergarten class as Rachel’s son and lucky for me, we have been neighbors. Rachel has been one of my very first friends I made in Mumbai and ever since she has been wonderful. Unfortunately for me (and I’m pretty sure for many other friends of hers), she’s moving back to her home country and she’s been packed out this week. I’m very sad to see her off because she was the one who invited me to her beautiful home for a play date for my daughter and introduced me to her friends when I still didn’t know anyone in Mumbai.

Her apartment might be one of the very first homes I visited in Mumbai. She had just moved into our building from another area in Mumbai. If I remember correctly, within a couple of days she unpacked and made her home look like a home she’d been for a while. When I first saw her place, her warm welcoming interior decor gave me an incentive to decorate my place to make it look like home. What I find unique about her home is that she has many traditional Indian items which are decorated with her own touch to blend very well with her modern style. I especially love the way she decorates flowers in a South Indian bronze uruli (urli) she uses to decorate flowers (please scroll down). It is beautiful.

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Rachel bought flowers for the photo shoot. She’s thoughtful like that. She said after one day, the flowers were looking down and sad, so she decided to put just the flowers in a bowl filled with water to let them float. It’s a lovely idea to decorate with flowers.

Dutch meets India

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It’s really nice to be welcomed by flowers at the door.

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Rachel went out of her way to prepare for our tea get together with her another friend and me. I loved the spread!! The beautiful chocolates, Indian pistachio cakes, sugar almond puffs and cheese puffs are from Celejor (I will feature Celejor soon), my current to-go cake shop and chocolatier all thanks to her!

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The reality of expat living hits me every summer. The tough part to me is that we have to bid farewell to our friends every summer. I have done this many times, but it feels harder in Mumbai because I’m sending off so many friends this summer. At the same time it’s exciting to see our friends get excited about their new adventures and stages of their lives. A positive side of this expat living is that we can stay in touch with our friends through social media and see their children grow up even if we live so far away. If we are lucky, we might even have a chance to visit our friends.

Friday Finds ☆ Trunk Shopping in Crawford Market

May 16, 2014

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If you live in Mumbai, you must have heard of Crawford Market. It’s as famous as Chor Bazaar (please click on the name to see the post about Chor Bazaar). Crawford Market and Chor Bazaar are two places many expats go for shopping during their stay in Mumbai. Crawford Market was named after Arthur Crawford, the first Municipal Commissioner of the city.

Crawford Market is massive. My friend took me to the area called Lohar Chawl, which I heard is famous for the electrical goods. There are other areas for fresh produce market, meat market, fish market, rice market, pets, crafts, textiles, electronics, furniture, cosmetics, linens and towels, you name it. It’s a type of market you go with a mission. You don’t go to Crawford Market which is open air for window shopping in this heat.



Crawford Market Mumbai India

My friend took me to Crawford Market to buy trunks for a toy storage and decoration. I bought one, too, as you can see in the first photo. My helper told me that Indian people used to travel with these trunks (maybe some people still do?). I love the vintage look. The best of all, it was very inexpensive. The cream color (a bit of a marble with khaki which I didn’t realize until I got home) trunk I bought was 750 Rupees (about US$13). Isn’t this a bargain?


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Crawford Market Mumbai India

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The Gujrat Trunk Depot
167, Abdul Rehman Street, Mumbai, 400003

Available in Lohar Chawl Area in Crawford Market

Party Favors
Goods you can make for kids party favors such as towels, backpacks, bags, lunch boxes and so forth were everywhere!

Crawford Market Mumbai India5

Artificial flowers
There are tons! They looked great and there are so many varieties! If you are looking for artificial fabric flowers in Mumbai, Crawford Market is the place to be. I’m horrible with plants and flowers, so I’m a fake flower person. I need to go back and look for artificial flowers.

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Bombay Dyeing
My friend took me here. They have nice linens and towels with bargain prices.

Crawford Market Mumbai India4

Beauty Palace
I don’t have a photo of this place because I could guess that they would not want me to take photos. This is the place to go if you are looking for cosmetics or any hair products. It looks like Beauty Place is the place where hair salon owners in Mumbai would go to get supplies for their salons.

On the way to Beauty Palace entrance, there was a party shop. They have a ton of stuff that would be great for party favors.

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Drop Off & Pick Up

The landmark for the drop-off and pick-up point for us was the Lohar Chawl Police Chawki. We walked to all the shops from here and they were all close by.

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I have our trunk in our living room next to our small coffee table. I plan on bringing it to the kids play room. I just don’t know where to place it at the moment. I might have to get another one.

white trunk crawford market

I hope you enjoyed my Friday Finds!

Mother’s Day Brunch ☆ Sofitel Mumbai

May 11, 2014

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When do you celebrate Mother’s Day? There are many different days to celebrate Mother’s Day in the world. I feel that mothers in the world deserve to be appreciated everyday, but it is still wonderful that many countries dedicate one day a year of recognition for mothers for their hard work. For us we celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May.

If my husband asks me what I want to do for the day, the only wish I have for the day is to not stay in the kitchen washing dishes and preparing meals all day. With 3 kids, you can spend a lot of time in a kitchen. I love spending a relaxing time with my family at a brunch, so I told him that and he arranged a brunch for us to go on Mother’s Day. Even though in reality it might not be all that relaxing with the young kids like my active toddler son, it’s still lovely to be able to have a moment of peace, sit and freely pick whatever you feel like eating from many choices.

Brunch buffets are not cheap. I picked Sofitel because I heard that kids were free, but only kids at the age of 5 and under are free and the kids at the age between 6 and 11 are charged the half price for an adult, which is 1,100 Rupees (about US$18) before tax. My second daughter had a few bites of food and a scoop of ice cream. Sigh. We also thought that we could use our discount card, but it was a black out day for any discount as it was Mother’s Day. I felt badly that I suggested it for Mother’s Day because it ended up being more expensive than I anticipated. My husband, however, told me that it was okay because we don’t give gifts on Mother’s and Father’s Day, so spending money on food is fine. I did have a great time!

As for brunch in Mumbai, there are variety of options. The ones that are popular that I am aware of are Grand Hyatt (we went there for Christmas and it was very nice!), Sofitel, Novotel, JW Marriot, Trident and so forth. I am sure there are many more.

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This is Reuel Benedict Collective Band. I thought that their performance was very good and they have beautiful voices.

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Mother's Day Brunch

I recognize that there are women in the world who want to have a baby, but they cannot. I think it’s wonderful in the U.S. that adoption is more common and accessible. In Japan it is still not common and I hope that will change in the future.

I believe that one becomes a mom not because she gives birth, but because she raises children. My children made me a mom in a sense that they teach me many things through my interaction with them. I grow up as a mom with my kids. I am still learning so much.

I hope all the mothers in the world had a wonderful mother’s day!

Wednesday Wall2Wall ☆ Kids Room For Boy & Girl

May 6, 2014

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Since my computer crashed, I decided to take photos with my camera and post them without editing because I don’t have an access to my photo editing software. All of the photos on this post are unedited.

This is the room my middle child, a daughter, and toddler son share. I keep it simple. Two sides of the room divide the room into a boyish side and girly side. They are okay about sharing a room although the beginning was not so easy on my daughter since my son could be quite loud. He’s okay now. It cracks me up to hear him talk in his bed before he falls asleep. My daughter doesn’t complain that she’s scared to go to bed, so it benefits her to share a room with her brother even though she was not so happy when she first learned that her older sister would have a room to herself. Here is my oldest daughter’s room.

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That little head peeking from the blanket is an American Girl Doll. I didn’t realize until now that it kind of looks creepy in a photo…

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These are both from Jakarta, Indonesia. The stuffed toys were gifts for both girls from my little sister during her visit in Jakarta. She purchased them at Lucy’s Batik in Pondok Indah. The lamp shade is from Cahaya in Kemang.

Kids Room

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The bunting is from my friend, Marie of Etincelle Creative Studio, whom I met through a blog course Blogging Your Way and had a chance to know in person in Singapore when I was there temporarily for the birth of my son. She’s very talented!

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We read many books both in English and Japanese. The following are all my three kids’ favorite when they were babies.

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This pretty much concludes the tour of our apartment in Mumbai. I hope you enjoyed seeing the photos. If you are interested, you can see other posts on my home in Mumbai under the tab INTERIOR DESIGN. You can see how the apartment transformed.

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Monday Mode ☆ Accessorize Jewelry in Mumbai

May 4, 2014

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All the photos on this post were taken with my iPod Touch 4.

I recently learned about Accessorize. I hadn’t even known that there was or were Accessorize shops in Japan as well until my friend mentioned it! Where was I? I love Accessorize now. It has so many beautiful and pretty design jewelry that I would love to wear.

I have wanted to have statement necklaces for a while. Something that accessorizes plain outfits. I live in a hot climate and layering is not an option for me even with a scarf any more. Thus, jewelry plays an important role to express individuality in fashion.

I went to Accessorize and looked at their prices and simply could not justify to buy their jewelry. Many women of my age probably spend more on jewelry, so for them they are not at all expensive. Since manage to find the same quality jewelry for less in the U.S., I had a difficult time convincing myself. Another thing is that usually imported goods are taxed and thus more expensive than in the original country in India. It’s the same in Japan, too. So, one day I went online and checked the prices in the country of its origin, England. To my surprise, I learned that the prices at Accessorize in India were not much different or about the same in England.

Then Accessorize has had Buy 2 Get 1 Free promotion recently. I went to one Accessorize shop for 4 different times. FOUR TIMES! Finally at the 4th time, I told myself “come on. I’ve been here 4 times. I still think about them all the time and they are having a promotion. Just get them!” Getting 3 jewelry was cheaper than buying 3 new outfits and these necklaces could give fresh looks to my old outfits I’ve worn many times.

I have been eyeing on these three items.

Guess what?

They are mine now.

Accessorize statement necklace

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Accessorize statement necklace w gold

Accessorize blue

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Accessorize white

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I felt guilty to buy something I ‘wanted’ and didn’t ‘need’. They, however, made me happy.

Sometimes you need a little reward or treat for yourself to stay upbeat and happy.

I do for sure.

My India Through Instagram

May 1, 2014

Painted in Waterlogue

All the photos on this post were taken with my iPod Touch 4. Some of them were taken with VOSCO CAM, a photo app, which is excellent and I am in love with.

The above elephant painting is my photo (original here) converted into a water paint painting with Waterlogue application.


I have been itching to write, but my computer is dead. The hard drive gave up.


That means I can’t edit my photos to post on my blog. Thus, I can’t blog as my blog is usually photo heavy with my own photos (with exceptions of a few).

The good news with the computer crash is that I saved all the files in an external hard drive. I had learned a hard way several times in the past, so I was determined to not do the same this time. I am currently using our old computer with missing keys to write. At least we have one that I can use. I cannot complain. However, my life feels on hold. It’s not too bad, I must say.

You would think that I would spend more time doing something I don’t usually prioritize to do. Not the case for me at the moment. I end up spending more time on Instagram!


Can I just say Instagram is brilliant? I finally joined Instagram in January 2014. If you love photography, Instagram is more visually entertaining than any other social media outlets in my opinion. It is very easy to shoot, edit and post photos and incredibly fun to see the gallery of creative captures by the people you follow while you get a plenty of information.

Indeed, a picture is worth a thousand words.

I feel that Instagram allows you to connect with people more easily as well. In fact, I got reconnected with Stephanie of Just me, my soldier, and our 4 little chicks. I met Stephanie in Texas through my husband’s sister, my sister-in-law back when my husband and I were dating. That is, many many years ago. Not only did I feel honored to be reconnected with Stephanie who is a fantastic blogger, but she also featured my Instagram on her blog as one of her 5 Instagram favorites. I am so happy. Stephanie takes beautiful photos to document her expat life in Italy on Instagram. She, her blog and Instagram are very inspiring to me.


On this post I would like to share with you some photos I took in our current city, Mumbai, which I posted on my Instagram chuzailiving. They represent how I feel about my life in India.

I hope you will enjoy my photos.







street fashion

colorful fashion India

Jean-Claude Beguine Spa

Jean Claude Beguine

american girl doll in sari

American Girl Doll in Sari


le 15 patiserrie

Le 15 Patisserie

TH Bakes

TH Bakes Sugar Cookies


Yauatcha Mumbai

the yoga house


Thai cooking class

thai cooking class


fruit vendor

fruit stand


Street art Mumbai

post office

post office in Mumbai


street of Mumbai

Gateway of India

Gateway of India2

Taj Mahal Palace Hotel

Taj Palace Hotel




good earth lanterns

Good Earth Lanterns

good earth lamp shades

Good Earth Lampshades

Jaipur plates

Indian Plates

the yoga house

The Yoga House

The Yoga House interior

pali village cafe

Pali Village Cafe

rustic Indian design


Mamagoto Mumbai

the baker’s dozen

The Baker's Dozen

women’s india trust

Women's India Trust


rickshaw ride in Mumbai


Without Instagram, this post would have not existed.

Many of these photos probably would have not been taken.

Without Instagram, why would I take a photo of my shoes on a rickshaw?

My India is more vivid thanks to Instagram.

Now my goal is to not get obsessed and consumed by Instagram.

I want to live my life and see everything with my own eyes while making it possible to capture some precious moments for future keepsakes.

Can I do it?

I hope so.


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