My kids (a 9-year-old and an 11-year-old) love going here. They enjoy choosing their food off of the conveyor belt. Usually, for kids or for people who aren't into raw fish, they have pork katsu, potato croquettes, shrimp and vegetable tempura. The salmon is always dependable here.
PROS: Fun and quick!
Compared to REI or any other outdoor businesses, for that matter, GI Joes offers excellent value. They also have a great selection. Look for their periodic 20% off coupons in the newspapers. It's worth the trip.
Although there are other Chinese restaurants that serve dim sum on the Eastside, Jeem's offers a good variety of dishes everyday of the week. They also have a very reasonably priced, yet an excellent choice of dinner options. At $19.95, they offer two dishes, house soup and dessert. The service is efficient, although when they're busy, it can be hard to get your tea or ice water refilled. You might want to make reservations, since there are usually long lines here, especially on weekends.
This place is often packed during the weekdays during the lunch hour with people who work nearby at Microsoft. (They're also open for dinner.) The food is authentic Chinese, leaning towards Taiwanese cuisine. It's casual dining at its best. The staff/owners/chefs are extremely efficient. If you're into Bubble Tea (those fruity drinks with tapioca pearls at the bottom,) they also make it here -- fast and delicious. I love all of their cakes, but my favorite bakery item here is the mini cream puff. If you come in for a few pastries, chances are you'll want to stay and eat a meal. If you come in for a meal, you won't leave without picking up some pastries.
Right across from the downtown Bellevue Park is this bead store with a huge selection of beads, tools and everything you need for this incredibly popular and addicting hobby. There are always a number of very knowledgeable and helpful staff at hand. They have a regular schedule of classes that get filled up so quickly as soon as registration starts that they have wait lists!
CONS: A bit pricey (but beware: this is not an inexpensive hobby.)
In their new store on Stone Way, Fusion Beads has plenty of space (no bumping elbows with fellow beading aficionados -- unless, of course, you're diving for the same bead at the same time.) They have a beautiful selection of semi-precious stones and pearls, as well as seed and glass beads. If you want to learn a new technique, they have a regular schedule of classes held at the store.
PROS: friendly and knowledgeable staff