Thank you

Thank you to George who is super sweet for nominating my blog to this Super Sweet Award. His blog site is: http://thebatamonblog.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/super-sweet-blogging-award/. He loves satay and peanut butter, among other things.

These are the blogs I chose to nominate:

http://mysmallstillvoice.wordpress.com/
http://theappletizer.wordpress.com/
http://texanaskitchen.com/#!/cover
http://eat-o-live.com/
http://terry1954.wordpress.com/

To those who I’ve nominated, these are the rules of the award-

Thank the blogger who nominated you for the award.
Nominate other bloggers who you think deserve the award.
Answer five simple but super sweet questions.
And, finally, here are the questions with my answers below.

Cookies or Cake?
Cookies
Chocolate or Vanilla?
Definitely chocolate
What’s Your Favourite Sweet Treat?
Cinnamon bread courtesy of my good friend Malou
When Do You Crave Sweet Things The Most?
During the wintertime
If You Had A Sweet Nickname, What Would It Be?
Chocolate Mama

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New blog…

Dear Everyone,

Jimmy and I have decided to open another blog: http://thewholesomegourmet.wordpress.com/the-wholesome-gourmet/ to chronicle our foray into the world of nutrition. It will be a daily challenge. I might not be able to write as often in this blog site. Thank you all for reading and following my posts. I will still read and follow your posts, as your posts really make my day.

I have recently come to this conclusion: Bloggers are awesome!!! They are the friendliest lot!!!Image

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!

Fastfood for Convenience

My son’s class went to a burger joint to observe how the food was prepared. This was part of their class project. Afterwards, the students ordered a meal of burgers, fries, and a large soda. To many of the students, it’s unthinkable to go to a fastfood restaurant and not order anything. So, they offered to share their fries and sodas with my son. My son was embarassed to refuse their offers, but he did it anyway, because of what I have been reading from a book entitled, “Fastfood Nation.”

For those of you who want to know more about what goes on behind the scene of burger and fries preparation, this book is a must read. I warn you though, that once you finish reading the book, you’ll never want to eat burgers and fries that are not homemade.

Most people know that fastfood is not good for the body. It is not natural. The body has difficulty digesting fastfood, so what it can’t digest, it puts into storage. Our belly, thighs, and underarms then become the warehouses where food that the body cannot utilize is stored. It’s as simple as this.

However, many of us (myself included before I changed my ways), think that a trip to a fastfood joint once in a while won’t hurt. Pretty soon, it becomes once a week, then thrice a week, and maybe daily when we find ourselves too busy to prepare our meals.

Furthermore, fastfood is cheap and we can eat it on the go. So, convenience, low price, and that enticing smell of fries create cravings that people who eat fastfood can not resist.

However, for us who have not eaten fries for years, we can’t stand the rancid smell of these chemically engineered food. It’s like a smoker and a non-smoker. A non-smoker can not stand the smell of cigarettes, but a smoker can. In fact, the smokers’ sense of smell is ruined.

So, back to the burger and fries story. It seems that this particular chain offers a scratch and win card for purchase of their food. The prizes include a car, gold jewelry, and an iPad. Hmmm. That’s very interesting. Sales must be down. Otherwise, if the food is good and sales is not a problem, why would they offer such big prizes?

11 more days before dragon Boat festival!

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.

 

 

Carton King Park

Carton King Park is a very interesting place. The furniture is made of cardboard, the curtains are made of paper, and the plates, cups, and other amenities are made of either paper or cardboard. It’s a good thing the food does not taste like cardboard.

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Even the high chair for children is made of cardboard.

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The beverage box can be recycled and used for a piggy bank.

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The atmosphere is relaxed and inviting.

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Outside the restaurant, visitor can stroll down the meandering path that reminds one of fairytales, where pumpkins turn into carriages. This is another great place to visit, if only for its uniqueness.

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A little bit of Europe in Taiwan

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Believe it or not, this photo was not taken in Europe, but this is the exact replica of a castle in Edinburgh. It is located in Nantou County, Taiwan. We went to this lovely hotel last summer and we had the most amazing time in the world. Despite the summer heat in the city, the weather here was simply adorable. There was no need for air-conditioning inside the rooms.

Story has it that the owner went to Europe, fell in love with the castle, and set about constructing a replica in Taiwan. I am so glad he did it, because we get to share this wonderful experience with our family, without the hustle and bustle of travel.

The food was glorious, and the staff was very friendly. Everything about the place suggested that guests were royalty, and were treated as such. The furniture and even the fireplace were shipped from Europe. After dinner, guests were treated to whiskey or brandy or bottled water (if one did not care for spirits), while listening to a fine selection of music from the masters. It was like being in an opera house. The sound system alone was said to be in the hundred thousand dollar range.

When we retired to our well appointed suite, we enjoyed wine while watching the fire glow in the fireplace. The bed and the pillows were so comfortable, only the threat of missing the sumptuous breakfast, made me get up reluctantly.

Although it was a week day, the place was full of diners and stay-in guests. This hotel package was worth every dollar we spent and more. So, if you are looking for a great place to stay in the hills of Nantou, look up “The Old England.” It’s a great family retreat!

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Mother’s Day…

…has come and gone, but us Moms are still here. We are still doing the washing and the cleaning, and the driving, and the cheerleading (for when our kids are down in the dumps).

I had a great time with my boys yesterday. We went to their Confirmation rehearsal, and made new friends from the Chinese mass (we belong to the English mass), perused the Jade Market, and had dinner at a Japanese Restaurant.

There’s something nice about sitting back and relaxing while my two grown-up sons prepare dinner for me. This Japanese restaurant is a buffet, shabu-shabu style where patrons are expected to cook their own food. Vegetables and meat are prepared for cooking, and diners have to cook the food themselves. When the kids were young, I never ventured into these restaurants. I figured, if I eat out, might as well enjoy and not cook. Now, this is one great business! Our dinner was excellent! However, we were not completely happy as hubby had to work the weekend shift at the hospital. So, he was not able to join us. Next year will be different. We are working towards becoming financially free so we can have more time for God and family.

Moving on…Moms everywhere (whether working outside or inside the home) need more than one day of recognition. So if today you haven’t done it yet, call your Mom and tell her you love her. Here’s something I just discovered LINE, a new free phone service for iPhone and Smartphones. If you feel like sending an email, go ahead and do it now. Whatever you do, try to remember your Mom as often as you can. If she’s already in heaven, then ask for her guidance and maybe whisper a favorable word or two for you, to headquarters up there.

Have a great week everyone!