Julie's Creative Lifestyle

Family Trip to Asia - Part 3

Monday, July 29, 2019

Hello blog friends.  

I am now onto Part 3 of our family trip to Asia.

Visiting Gardens By The Bay was one of the best highlights of my trip to Singapore.  

It is a huge nature park that spans 250 acres of reclaimed land in the Central region of Singapore.

Below are some of the photos I took of the gardens.  

We went to the gardens in the morning but the large futuristic looking trees light up at nighttime.

Below you can see Alice in Wonderland tucked under a large mushroom.

I thought the cows and chickens were the cutest tucked in the tulips and hyacinth flowers.

Look at the windmill and the cute red truck with the colorful dutch shoes surrounded by the tulip flowers.

There were so many plants and flowers to look at and wonderful waterfalls.

We planned to meet up that evening with a few of our friends for drinks and dinner at Como Dempsey.  The Dempsey Cookhouse and Bar.

We all met up at the bar and I enjoyed a cranberry and vodka drink with Japanese vodka.  That was a first for me drinking Japanese vodka and I enjoyed my drink!

We ordered many appetizers to share them among the six of us.

For my main meal I had Maori Lakes Lamb Chops.

I was so excited when we all decided we would share the four desserts!  Even though I was so full the desserts were so yummy tasting.

Stay tuned for more of our family trip to Asia.

Part 3 - Last day in Singapore.

If you missed Part 1, you can read about that HERE.

If you missed Part 2, you read about that HERE.

Click HERE to see the great parties I will be linking up to!

Read more »

Starbucks Copycat Red Eye Drink

Monday, July 22, 2019

Hello blog friends.  

If you love Starbucks drinks than you are going to love this post.  👍 

Starbucks Copycat Red Eye Drink

Here at my house all three of us LOVE Starbucks drinks.

I am writing this post in honor of my husband.  He had the idea to make a Starbucks Red Eye drink at home.

I had never heard of a red-eye drink until he mentioned the drink to me.  This drink is so easy to make right at home and tastes great.

To start our day off I make a pot of coffee every morning using ground Starbucks coffee.  I usually buy a huge bag of it at Costco (whole beans and not ground).  

At Starbucks they will grind the bag of coffee for me for free!  When I do this I always treat myself to a cup of coffee.

Starbucks Hot Red Eye Drink


Starbucks Coffee and Espresso


Set up the coffee in your coffee machine as you usually do.  Now add one tablespoon of espresso to the coffee.  Add your water and put the machine on to brew.


Making the red eye drink this way is much easier than making regular coffee and a separate pot of espresso coffee.  You just make the coffee and espresso in the same pot.

You can also make this Starbucks Red Eye Drink as an iced or hot coffee.  Just let the pot of coffee cool off and add ice for an Iced Starbucks Red Eye Drink.  

NOTE:  For your information, a Starbucks Black Eye Drink is a regular coffee with two shots of espresso added.

Have you ever heard or tried a Red Eye drink?

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Click HERE to see the great parties I will be linking up to!

Read more »

Family Trip to Asia - Part 2

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Hello blog friends.

I am back with more of our Family Trip to Asia - Part 2. 

We started the afternoon off by meeting our good friend from Singapore for lunch.  We met her at the Conrad Hotel.  We had an awesome buffet lunch which consisted of so many assorted foods.   

I loaded my plate with chicken, beef, noodles, rice, and different salads.

We also filled our plates with different desserts.  Sorry, I forgot to get a photo of them.  We had such a nice time catching up with our friend and the food was wonderful.  

After our huge lunch, we went to Marina Bay Sands, as seen in the movie Crazy Rich Asians.  If you haven't seen this movie, it's a must see. The same goes for the book series.  I enjoyed reading all three books.

Marina Bay Sands is a resort and hotel fronting Marina Bay in Singapore.

It has the worlds largest rooftop infinity pool at the top of all three buildings.  It looks as if a huge surfboard is stuck on top.  

The only access to this pool is if you are staying at the hotel, Marina Bay Sands.

We took an elevator all the way up to the top of the building.  The day was hot and the sky cloudy, but we totally enjoyed looking at the views overlooking Singapore.

You can also eat lunch at the restaurant seen below with the red umbrellas.  What gorgeous views they have of Singapore.

Looking down you can see the Gardens By The Bay.  You can also see the gardens in scenes from the movie Crazy Rich Asians.

It was time to walk around the mall inside Marina Bay Sands.

It has a waterway and boats you can ride on in the mall!  
Only in Singapore!

We went back to the hotel and rested.  We then had dinner at another friends house who happens to also be a business associate of my husband.  :)  She is a real foodie!

Our friends hosted a wonderful dinner consisting of Korean beef, dipping sauces, noodles, kimchee, and a salad.

Our friend has a real talent for cooking and making such a beautiful presentation of the food.

Sorry, I missed taking photos of the homemade ice cream which was so delicious.  I just wanted to enjoy the company of our friends.

Stay tuned for more of our family Trip to Asia.

Part 2 - Singapore.  

If you missed Part 1, you can read about that HERE.

Click HERE to see the great parties I will be linking up to!

Read more »

Instant Pot Stuffed Artichokes

Monday, July 15, 2019

Hello blog friends.  I made this Instant Pot recipe recently and it came out so good!  

We LOVE to eat Stuffed Artichokes in our house.  

We used to visit my husband's Italian aunt and she would make the best stuffed artichokes.  

I haven't made these in years until one day I was looking for an Instant Pot recipe to make them.

I found this awesome recipe by watching a YouTube video that shows step-by-step on how to make them.

If you like using your Instant Pot then you'll like how fast these artichokes cook up.


Below are the stuffed artichokes after cooking for 10 minutes.

The Delicious Dipping Sauce!


*  Please read my NOTES before making this recipe.


4 artichokes, stem cut off at the base, cut off tips of each leaf to remove thorny part
1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
4 tsp of granulated garlic
2 tsp of salt
2 tsp of pepper
1 1/2 cups of water
1 heaping tbsp of crushed garlic
4 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, divided


1)  Cut off each thorny tip of each artichoke leaf and chop off the stem with a knife.  When done, rinse them off and set aside to let dry.

2)  Mix together Parmesan cheese, granulated garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.

3)  Add the water and crushed garlic to the bottom of the Instant Pot which is big enough to accommodate 4 artichokes and add the trivet.

4)  Holding one artichoke at a time over the pot, spread the leaves and add about a 1/4 of cheese mixture trying to get it in between the leaves and lay each artichoke on the trivet when done.  (Any mixture that falls off the artichoke will go into the water in the pot which will become our dipping sauce).  Squeeze the artichokes together so they fit as best as possible.

5)  Drizzle each artichoke with 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, allowing the excess to land in the water of the pot.

6)  Cover pot and hit "Manual" or "Pressure Cook" High Pressure for 10-20 minutes (go to 10 if you want it a little firmer and go to 20 if you want it very soft).  Quick release.  Carefully remove the artichokes with tongs and set on a plate.

7)  The water will darken and become the dipping sauce for your artichokes.  Pour into a bowl.

8)  Serve immediately.  Each leaf should easily tear out.  Dip each leaf and skin the meat off with your teeth and discard the leaf.  Then eat the heart if you desire to work to get it out (some say this is the hidden treasure of the artichoke).

9)  Enjoy!

NOTES:  This recipe was adapted from Pressure Luck Cooking.  The blog has step by step photos and a video on how to cook the stuffed artichoke in the Instant Pot.

For my recipe, I did not have any granulated garlic, so I used dry minced garlic.  I also used two tsp. of salt and it tasted like too much salt for me.  The next time I make it I will only use one tsp. of salt.  I used inside the bottom of the Instant Pot minced garlic instead of crushed garlic.  The recipe calls for extra virgin olive oil but I used regular olive oil.

For the cooking time in the Instant Pot, I cooked it for 10 minutes.

**  The Instant Pot that I use is: Instant Pot Duo 7 in 1 Programmable Pressure Cooker - 6QT.

Yummy Instant Pot Stuffed Artichoke!

Click HERE to see the great parties I will be linking up to!


Read more »