Change One Undesirable Habit

Changing many undesirable habits all at once is like trying to hit several tennis balls simultaneously. It’s just impossible. The truth is, if we focus on just one habit at a time, our tiny success in overcoming the undesirable habit will enable us to cause a ripple effect such that we will eventually change other related, undesirable habits.

When I was a child, I remember a story entitled, “The Magic Geranium.” It was about a woman whose house was very untidy, and who moped around the house all day long. (This is the description of a depressed person).

One day, her friend gave her a geranium, telling her that it was magic. The woman did not believe in magic, but since she did not want to offend her friend, she put the flower in vase and poured water into the vase. Then, she sat down to look at it.

While looking at the pretty flower, she realized that the table was too shabby, and decided to paint the table. Then, she painted the chairs, then the walls, and finally, she cleaned up the room. She cleaned the entire house, and even cooked dinner for her husband, something she has not done for a long time. The husband was quite surprised when he came home that night. “What happened?” He exclaimed. The woman answered, that it was all because of the magic geranium.

In real life, this kind of transformation does not happen in a matter of hours. However, the concept is there. Changing just one undesirable habit will cause a chain of reactions that will lead to a better person and a better life.

A little tweak of our eating habits can lead to better nutrition. Below is a suggestion for a meal. Just add good carbohydrates like brown rice or sweet potato (if you are not diabetic), and you’re good to go.

Have a great weekend!

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Can You Believe This?

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This is a bag of chips containing different kinds of potato and other root crops. It claims to supply a serving of vegetables per ounce. Of course, we all know that potatoes and other root crops are not vegetables just as French fries are definitely not vegetables. However, I was hoping to find a healthier alternative to the regular chips. To my disappointment, the chips were greasy and salty. So, don’t be fooled like me, by the label when buying food.

It was wishful thinking on my part. I wanted so much to eat something crunchy and salty, but less sinful. This however, was a big disappointment. Junk food masquerading as healthy food is something each of us have to watch out for.

Happy eating!

Are You Ready?

Taiwan is bracing for not one, but two typhoons. Yesterday, the supermarkets were packed with people stocking up on vegetables and fruits. This is one of the reasons why I was unable to post.

The other reason is that I have been chatting with my very busy sister in the US. She told me that she can teach me how to dry and pack food. She travels a lot and does not like to eat out. She prepares her own food. That is how she kept slim and fit despite her stressful job.

This information is heaven sent, as Jimmy and I want to develop a more convenient program for weight management. The biggest challenge is how to get kids and adults alike, to eat vegetables three times a day. We have trained our boys to eat iceberg or Romaine lettuce, while we like to munch on celery. However, most of our clients can not copy this, as they want something cooked to start their day. I will be writing more on this in the coming days.

Anyway, back to the typhoon. Classes have been suspended, and people in landslide prone areas have been evacuated. Everyone is on high alert.

I can not help but wonder if we have the same readiness when it comes to eternal life. While going about our daily chores, do we often ponder on our eligibility to enter the Kingdom of God? Do we make time for God and ask for directions on how to lead our lives so that we may one day be with Him?

As imperfect creatures, it is but natural to gloss over these thoughts, and even to deny them. However, our mortality is an eventuality, and the sooner we face these issues, the better our chances for heaven will be.

So, join me now as we carve some quiet time alone with God. Despite our busyness, the most important One of all, is God.

Why We Need to Watch What We Eat

The photo shows the spread we feasted on in December of 2008. This was held in our home and most of the food was brought in by the people who attended the party. It included a mixture of  Chinese, Filipino, and Western cuisines. This is pretty much the usual banquet fare in most gatherings this part of the world.

Let me backtrack to 2008. It was the year Jimmy and I celebrated because we lost a total of 27 kgs (59.4 lbs) in weight. We were on top of the world because many of our friends followed us. We were so happy to have helped our friends achieve their desired weights. This was also the start of a great business in the health industry.

We were, and still are committed to a healthy lifestyle. At that time, we seldom ate out. I chose to serve roasted, steamed, boiled, or baked meals. I threw out all the junk food in the house, and completely outlawed soda and bottled juices. Water was our thirst quencher. We shunned buffet restaurants and ate out only on special occasions. We love to eat but refused what I called, “sinful food.”

People told us we were too thin. We kept hearing this comment to the point where it started to bug us. So, we started thinking, maybe, we really are too thin. Maybe, we can indulge a little bit.

So, we would sometimes indulge in “sinful food.” A slice of cake here, a beer there, some peanuts here, a crepe there. The sugar started creeping in ( not white, but brown)…surely, that’s okay?! Hmmm.

Furthermore, a friend loves to bake. My kitchen is her testing ground. Although we use organic, brown sugar, honey, type of ingredients, I noticed that after a year of eating these delightful goodies, we needed new clothes. Alarm bells started to ring. This can not go on. The fat menace slowly crept into our lifestyle, again.

So, we decided to go through the weight loss program one more time. Some people still think we are okay. But, we feel heavier and honestly, we really don’t like the feeling of not being able to get into our pants. I don’t like the feeling of my thighs kissing each other when I walk. I get heavy around the butt and thigh area. Jimmy’s belly is starting to show.

Unlike the last time where I refused to keep a diary of our adventure, this time, I have decided to chronicle our thoughts, feelings, and other matters in this blog.

We will start our weight loss journey when we get back from a business trip. Until then, I will be writing about whatever strikes my fancy until the day we start our weight management program.

It’s 18 days to go before Dragon Boat Festival! Get your eggs ready.

 

 

Lunch at Pinococo

19 days to go before Dragon Boat Festival!

On Sundays, we eat out after attending the 11:30 am mass. We wanted to try a popular Italian restaurant named Pinococo. It’s so popular that we were able to eat at 2:30 pm after waiting for almost an hour. By then, we were very hungry and a bit grouchy. The staff was very nice, though and the food was superb.

So, if you find yourself in Taichung, try this restaurant on Gong Yi Road.

I’m sharing some photos of the food we ordered.

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Salad Nicoise

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The pasta…

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The pizza…

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The beer…by the way, I got tipsy halfway through this bottle, but it was really yummy. I had to sleep it off and had a raging headache when I woke up. I vowed never to drink beer again.

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The perfect cappuccino after one sip. It looks like a boxing glove to me.

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Finally, the eye catching restroom sign. I just had to take a photo. The lady who was waiting outside the door thought I’d gone bonkers. Oh well…

Believe It Or Not!

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What’s that you see? Is that really an egg standing on one end? To see is to believe! Before we go to the story of the “standing egg,” let me share a segment from: http://www.whatsonwhen.com/sisp/index.htm

Dragon Boat Festival

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When: Jun 2012 (annual)
where: Taiwan
Cheering crowds gather to watch ornately carved boats compete in vibrant dragon boat races. The festival is a nationwide celebration held in honour of the poet Qu Yuan. Popular spots to see the fast-paced spectacle are Lugang and the capital, Taipei.

Qu Yuan drowned himself in the Mi Lo River during the 3rd century BC to protest against the then corrupt government.

When the local fishermen learnt of the poet’s demise, they trawled the waters to find him. They were unsuccessful, so threw rice dumplings into the sea and thumped the water with their paddles to distract the piranhas from the poet’s body. An important part of today’s celebrations is eating zongzi, pyramid-shaped dumplings made of glutinous rice.

A lesser known legend about this festival is the “standing egg” phenomenon. When my Taiwanese friend first told me about this, I did not believe it. That was until around 8 years ago when I tried this in my kitchen. I was able to do it, and so did my son. Here are some photos I took last year when I remembered to try it again in our present home. It didn’t matter whether I did it on the first floor (8 years ago), or on the 10th floor (our present apartment).

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How to do this:

On June 23, 2012 (Dragon Boat Festival this year, which changes every year), at exactly 12 o’clock noon, start letting the eggs stand on one end. Now, I don’t know if this works only for Taiwan time or for different times around the world. What’s really cool is if everyone who reads this post will try to stand an egg on one end on June 23, 2012 @ 12:00 noon their time and report their results here. That would be awesome.

I will start my daily posts (except Sundays my day of rest) with a countdown to June 23 based on Taiwan time. This will be fun!

For starters, 21 days to go (Taiwan time)!

Have an awesome weekend everyone!

Somewhere in Miaoli

At the end of summer last year, Jimmy and I decided to go on a retreat. We wanted to look into what we really wanted in life. Jimmy found this tiny bed and breakfast cottage, tucked in the rural area of Miaoli. It was located beside a manmade lake. There are only three rooms for overnight stay, but the place is full of people who want to partake of their excellent meals.

I am sharing some photos we took while we were there.

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People can dine underneath trees and even dip their feet into the water while eating their fine meal. That explains the chairs in the water.

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I just woke up in this photo and I started writing my goals with a white feather pen. I just love the atmosphere.

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The lake takes on different moods depending on the time of the day.

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The place is 勻淨湖. Thanks to Jimmy for writing down the name of the place.

Have a great day, everyone!

Joined protest rally

Can’t write long today. Joined protest rally and had a great time seeing old and new friends. It was peaceful. Will write about it next time.

In the meantime, here are a couple of photos of baked goodies thanks to my friend, Malou.

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Banana walnut bread

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Meat buns

Have a great weekend everyone!!!

Up in Suau…

Suau is located in northern Taiwan. It’s a very long train for us residing in the middle of the island, but it was all worth it. Here are some photos of the luxurious resort, RSL, we went to.

The foyer…it was Halloween time.

There are many pools outside and inside the buildings.

The food is superb!

There is a beautiful fountain!

On the way back, I took a photo of a rich man’s house near the sea from the train window.

This was one of the best birthday presents I ever received.

Thank you Jimmy!