TGIF! I couldn’t wait for the last minute to clock out and step away from my work station. After a day’s work, I finally got the chance to enjoy the rest of the day. I have nothing fancy or any sort of planned revelry to do, simply “me time” is all I want. I don’t even care to open the TV or go out to shop. I’m glad the kids are out with their dad at a school tournament (yay!) it’s really nice to have an extended solitary moment (as of this writing). I realize that ever since I started working at home some few years ago, I seldom speak to anyone face to face. I communicate alright, but it’s either through email, webinars,…
It’s Monday morning, the back of my legs are cramped from what seemed to be an endless walk we had yesterday at the beach shore with family and friends. Interestingly, it looks like I had a dreamless rest overnight, perhaps due to exhaustion from the previous day. I woke up half past my usual waking hour. It’s my day off at work and I wanted to spend extra time on bed to enjoy a chance for reflection. I’m grateful to the Lord my God for all the blessings I receive, for the friends and family whom I cherish, and for another day to experience my creator. Yesterday was also the last day that our Lady stayed in our home. The presence of “Our Lady of Fatima” is a good way to bring our entire family praying together. Even though our family…
Happy Birthday Mappytimes! Did you know that the New York Times is approaching its 161st year anniversary in a few months? But that’s not the reason why I’m celebrating; it’s about the first year “blogoversary” of Mappytimes, Yay! I began sharing my thoughts on WP on July 16, 2011 to be exact. However, I’m kind of late on my anniversary post. The anticipation to post on the precise date was completely overlooked as I was obliged by duty to accomplish the menial yet chief tasks any mother must do. WordPress…filling the void I do wear many hats; motherhood is only one of those colorful hats I love to wear. I am busy, yet here I am thrilled on the opportunity to engage with technology during my spare…
THIS HAS BEEN “FRESHLY PRESSED” and MY SECOND TIME ON BEING FEATURED IN ONE YEARI AM LOVING THE MOMENT!…
I have a dream…and it finally came true! I always wanted to bake cinnamon buns in the morning and eat it freshly baked. For some reason, I feel intimidated on how it is prepared, processed, and baked, thus no challenge was ever done. Hah! gone are the days of staring at my recipe book that has a photo that sometimes urge me to go to a Cinnabon store. The past weeks have surely turned our oven busy. Baking is in the air :)
Making sticky bun is quite a task but it’s worth your every sweat ( if you live in a warm place that is). The proverbial phrase of “virtuous patience” truly fits the wait. I began with this task around 3pm one Sunday afternoon and enjoyed its goodness the next morning. The unforgettable sweet aroma that filled our kitchen was enough to inspire me in making it again in the future.
I followed the video instruction of Mr.Alton brown in making the dough.
Flatten the dough with the rolling pin as wide as it can get. One helpful tip that I want to share is using a parchment paper or wax paper underneath. It saved me from tedious clean up afterwards. After flattening it, I spread butter on top of it and then sprinkle a mixture of 1 tbsp cinnamon, white granulated sugar, toasted pecan nuts (grounded in small bits).
Roll the dough carefully and slightly pinch the end together to seal the edge.
This roll yielded 10 slices.
The sliced rolls will sit in this glaze with walnuts (see recipe from Bobby Flay link). It will be kept in the fridge overnight until it swell enough and ready to bake. (Notice the color of walnuts, I rarely see red walnuts and got it from our local grocery store. )
The next morning, this is the pleasant surprise when I opened the fridge
I baked this for 30 minutes at 350○
It was sweet, chewy, gooey and perfect for a hot cup of coffee, but the best part is sharing it with your beloved .
Yes, we are still in the baking mode! One night my oldest daughter made a comment, “mom we should bake our daily bread since we eat lots of those” my response was a resounding, “Yes why not?” That was the beginning of an inspiration for the love of baking. She started devouring with my baking encyclopedia, trying to find a recipe for everyday bread. I keep reminding her that just a plain white loaf is a good starting point but she insisted on making the plaited bread because it looks fancy…and so the experiment set out.. Plaited loaf recipe requires the following ingredients: 1 packet active dry yeast, 1 tsp honey, 250 ml lukewarm milk, 2 oz melted butter, 1 tsp salt, 1 egg lightly beaten, 15 oz strong flour (we…
It’s summer time! The kids are ready to explore anything including everything about kitchen activities. My girls included my baking books in their summer readings (seriously!) and eager to try their hands on the recipes I haven’t tried myself. Recently, my weighing scale is not a friend anymore (actually, it hates me for a while now). Oh well, I’m sure it will haunt me sooner, but for now let the fun remain. My two little chefs gets excited like I do when we pick a new recipe to try. I can sense that my girls love baking and cooking. The fact that it’s a messy business is not at all a problem since we all do our share in the process from preparation to clean-up. Actually, it’s really tiring but in the end,…
It’s late in the afternoon and I was busy looking for my ice cream dasher. The promise to make a home-made ice cream for my kids is long overdue and my little one is getting impatient. I keep looking everywhere for that mixer but I end up finding old stuff that I am happy to see anyway. One of the unexpected finds was the box of Kitchenaid grater and slicer set. I opened the box with excitement just like the first time I received it from my husband. It was his present to me a few years ago to ease my daily cooking task and yet I never had a chance to use it. Unaware of the time, my kids and hubby started to chorus about what’s for dinner.…
As we strolled along the Poppy Hills Golf Course, the sight of vivid yellows by the parking lot captivated me. I’m referring to the beautiful Poppy flowers neatly arranged along the sidewalk with green bushes and other beauties of which complimented it.
Some facts I wanted to share: Poppy is California’s state flower. It was selected as the state flower by the California State Floral Society in December 1890, winning out over the Mariposa lily and the Matilija poppy by a landslide, but the state legislature did not make the selection official until 1903. Its golden blooms were deemed a fitting symbol for the Golden State. April 6 is designated California Poppy Day (see wiki). Wearing of poppies was once a custom in the United States as well, and attempts have been made to revive the tradition in the US in connection with Memorial Day (end of May).
No wonder this flower was chosen for the Golden State. Although it comes in different colors, its golden color fit the State’s title. We were at the golf course around mid afternoon and you can imagine how bright it was at the time of the day but glad that it was a breezy afternoon. If I was not wearing shades, the vibrant reflection that almost like the sun rays, would have hurt my eyes. Ok, it was an exaggeration but at least you get my point on the simile.
Holidays make our sanity intact. Legally speaking, this is the time when we get to spend some quality time with the most important people in our life without having to worry about skipping from work. On the other hand, no one can take away that choice anyway, but it’s always nice to have an extra paid time off. In between stress and hustle-bustle of life, we sometimes cannot recognize which one has taken control of ourselves, thank God for holidays and we are able to stop and put on the brakes of this rapid accelerator of life. Whatever it is that drives us nuts, it depends on the kind of world we live in.
Living in the fullness of life is what makes our life worth living. It is not about the hardship; this is what gives us endurance. It is not about poverty; poverty makes us human. It is not all about money; money is just a tool for making things easier. It’s not about just getting rich; nobody cares about those who are in the millionaire’s list. It’s not all about our job titles; our job is to make a difference in the lives of others. These thoughts will occur if we have a time to reflect and contemplate. Turning off the “noise button” of life will help us understand why things are just the way it is. I guess my point is that we allow things to happen because these are part of the elements of life. However, the proverbial saying (which my mom used to tell me) will always echo in our hearts and minds…”Life is what you make it”.
Let’s begin the tour at the 17-mile drive. First, we paid an entrance fee of about $9.75 (I guess that’s per car). We were not really sure what to expect. So we paid a fee therefore, it gave me a hunch that it is worth driving the area otherwise, why charge? So a welcome sign greeted us at the gate and the friendly staff gave us a brochure/map of the area.
Just another manic Monday… We were on our way to arts & crafts store to get some stuff for my daughter’s project. The store is about ten minutes away from our home. I asked my hubby to put gas in the car before we go to the store and of course he agreed, but we stopped by at the video box first to drop off the movie title “we bought a zoo” that he rented the other night as it’s already due. With sky-high price of gasoline, at least it’s practical to get as much things needed to be done in order to save the trip.
As we drive along the road, a helicopter was circling around the area we were at. At first we just ignored it but after driving a few more miles we could hear an announcement from above and so we opened the window but it was starting to fade and we just continue to the gas station. While my hubby was filling the tank, here comes again the chopper and this time it was lower and louder. It did get the attention of all the motorists. I tried to listen but all I heard was the last part saying “call 911!!”
I saw my husband talking to this muscular guy wearing a green shirt who was putting gas in his bike. It appears that this guy was asking my husband on what the announcement was all about. After a few seconds, my hubby hurriedly drove us off the scene. I asked him, “what was going on with the chopper?” and he said they are alerting the people that if they see a guy wearing a green shirt and driving a bike, call 911 immediately. I gasped and looked back at the gas station. My husband and I cracked up and he said, “I know right! I thought so too but I don’t think it’s him, he was clueless and looks like he just got up from bed..oh and the race description does not fit him… I thought that was hilarious!