Attending Baby Banquets

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This post was written on Wednesday … but somehow I must have forgotten to hit the publish button.  Oh well…here it is… almost a week later!

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Another beautiful day in Vancouver and another perfect day for a lunch run.  I love it!

Yesterday, N and I went for our regular Tuesday lunch run.  Even though it had stopped raining, our run started off overcast and a bit chilly.  N decided to change the route a bit and we tackled a steep uphill trek before reaching a bit of flat ground.  That plateau didn’t last for very long before N found an even steeper hill to run up and back to the office.  The two kilometres back to the office was quite literally an uphill battle.  I completed the 4 km run in 30 minutes pausing only briefly at a red light.

Usually (well, as usual as a 4 week routine has become) I leave a day of rest between two running days.  I’ve been running consistently on Tuesdays while using Wednesday as a day of rest before putting on the runners for Thursday or Friday.  Because of some work commitments, I am not able to run this Thursday or Friday.  If I wanted to stay with my weekly training schedule, that only left me with today’s lunch hour to run the second weekday

Unfortunately, N had an appointment this afternoon and was unable to join me for the run.  I wavered for a bit and considered not running today.  But then the thought of lugging all my running gear back and forth (home to work and back home again), I didn’t want to feel unaccomplished for something I could have easily accomplished.  OK, perhaps “easily accomplished” is a bit misleading.   Regardless, if I was going to take my running gear home again, then I should make sure some of it was used.  I’m glad that I went for my run as the weather was fantastic.  My easy running pace helped keep me moving for the full 30 minutes.

It must have been the gorgeous weather that brought out the moms and their strollers today.  Running past the baby strollers, I thought of baby celebrations… and, of course, baby banquets.  Growing up, one-month baby banquets seemed to be the norm amongst the relatives.  When my friends started having babies a few years ago, I think most of them had baby showers and not baby banquets.  Last year was probably one of the few years that I had two baby banquets to attend — both in the summer.

The first of the two baby banquets was held as a 100-day baby celebration at Prince Seafood Restaurant on Granview Highway.  Even though I arrived fairly early, it was difficult to find parking.  I circled the area a couple of times and eventually parked 2.5 blocks away.  My friend had the private dining area at the back of the restaurant.  In addition to a few tables of relatives, baby boy’s mom and dad each invited a table of friends.  I like how they arranged the seating so that baby boy’s mom and dad each sat at the table with their own friends.

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It was great to gather together to celebrate a new addition to my friend’s family and enjoy some good laughs over food.  It went from good to even better when I realized that I wasn’t the only person taking pictures of the food.  There were at least three of us who whipped out our cameras or cellphones to snap shots every time a new dish arrived at the table.  In fact, I was probably one of the quicker ones to take the photo and wait for the others to finish.  But then, that’s probably why some of my pictures are a bit blurry or not framed very well.  Oh well… the baby was the highlight of the evening, eating was secondary and taking pictures of the food was further down the list.

The food was reasonable although I don’t have a comparison to the price paid.  We were there to feast and have fun and we did both!  The service was quite attentive and the server was always there to remove extra dishes or refresh our plates.  She was also good at taking the last bit on the dish and unloading it on the guests.  Overall, it was a good baby celebration dinner.  Baby boy slept through most of the festivities but opened his eyes briefly towards the end of the evening to peek out at the noisy people around him.
Prince Seafood Restaurant 王子海鮮酒家 on Urbanspoon

I attended another baby celebration towards the end of the summer.  This time, it was a 30-day baby banquet.  My friends booked the Fortune City Seafood Restaurant on East 1st Avenue.  I was worried about not being able to find nearby parking (and having to walk back to the car at night) so I went really early to scout out my options.  As it turns out, Fortune City is in a plaza with a parkade.  The grocery-shopping crowds were leaving for the day so there was ample parking when I arrived.

Not only was I early, but probably also the first non-family guest at the banquet.  The benefit to my early arrival, especially since I was going solo, was to have my pick of seat at the table. As other guests at the table started showing up, it was nice to catch up with old friends and meet new people.

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The 10-course meal was good and there was lots to go around.  Although we were stuffed by the end of the meal, we still managed to have dessert.  I’ve always been told that there is a separate stomach for dessert.  I believe it now.. especially when it’s cake brought in from Ganache Patisserie.

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