In the Kitchen: Merienda Galore

What is one best way to spend time with the family? During merienda!

Afternoon snacks besides night chats is one part of the day I enjoy spending with my kids. My kids don’t have high levels of appetite (especially my elder daughter) but they have all the thrills and giggles whenever I serve something for them. We call it “Takaw-Tingin” here in the Philippines. It is summer and kids are out for vacation and as we all know, kids nowadays are unstoppable. They make it necessary for us parents to prepare something new for them, be it food, games, toys or unlimited number of activities so as to keep their nerves and minds busy! That somehow makes parenting one best way to explore and continue to learn. Hey! I have to somehow dig the internet for creative ideas from snacks to kiddie activities. Here’s one I imitated from a Pinterest pin – a unique way to serve ice cream!

cool

Maybe I can say that our country is one of the many places where you can go on food exploration and pig out! Since kids this summer is most of the time at home, we bond by eating together. Check out these afternoon merienda I served them one time. You will definitely crave too!

merienda

Friend For Keeps

Friend For Keeps

“A friend is someone whole reaches for your hand, but touches your heart.”

Kathleen Grove

friendship

 
I have been inspired to try back my love for photography as soon as I got my Cherry mobile Flare phone. Together with my childhood friends, we visited a resort in Bulacan. The kids had so much fun especially Roey who got to play again with Miggy. Miggy is just almost a year older than her and the two get along pretty well. I hope that their friendship, just like their Moms’ last a lifetime.
 

In the Kitchen: Beef Kare-Kare

In the Kitchen: Beef Kare-Kare

I have cousins who do really good in terms of cooking. There may not be a chef in our clan but a lot of them (excluding me since I only have the interest but not the skill) really can make delicious dishes. We have been teasing one cousin to put up a catering business – this excites me in all honesty. I just wish she would soon agree and have the guts and capital to start the business.

karekare

 

I have been wanting to serve the family something out of the usual dish we have everyday and so I thought of Kare-Kare. Kare-Kare originated from Pampanga, Philippines. Kapampangans use either oxtail, tripe or beef but there were sophisticated variations which use chicken.  This Filipino dish is normally served during special occasions as it somehow requires some time from preparation to cooking.

I decided to use beef since it was my first time and I was just to use Del Monte Quick n Easy Kare-Kare mix I bought from the grocery. I have added string beans, eggplant and Pechay leaves (Chinese Cabbage) to complete the stew. Thanks to Del Monte as my first attempt in cooking Kare-Kare turned out yummy, easy and quick! I was saved from the stress and effort in preparing the peanut sauce which I truly doubt to perfect. One huge off point though – I forgot the Bagoong (Shrimp Paste)! This dish wouldn’t be complete without the shrimp paste. Well then, next time will be perfect!

New Flavors: Selecta Ice Cream

ice cream

We are beating the summer heat!

Either we go out swimming or just chill and spend time at home, we make sure to keep our cool! One way of doing so is enjoying cold drinks and desserts – ice cream on top of the list! We have tried the new flavors of Selecta ice cream, Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chip Cookie and Oreo Rocky Road. And to tell you honestly, these tubs were empty in less than 48 hours. It was not quite fast since I get to enjoy these new flavors with just 2 kids. We all love the new flavors, hmmm… I personally have enjoyed the Mrs. Fields  Chocolate Chip Cookie than the other flavor. These flavors are (I think) limited and some grocery stores don’t have them yet so when you guys got the chance to find one, grab the tub!

Since this post is not a review, let us keep my ratings a secret! Haha!

You have been given a hint!

 

Uplifting Our Spirits

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Last February, we have welcomed the image of the Blessed Virgin Mary at home. We have offered our prayers and lifted up to her our heart’s desires. A week of praying the rosary truly lifted our spirits. I am but glad that my daughters, at their young age, willingly prayed the rosary with me. My elder daughter even invited some friends to pray with us. Having the Blessed Virgin Mary’s image at home brought back a lot of memories to me. I have once been a member of Block Rosary and Legion of Mary back my High School days. I was very active during my sophomore and junior year in fact. My childhood friends and I would always pray and join the Block Rosary prayer brigade.

“Block Rosary is a Mother’s call to her children. Block Rosary is designed in Heaven and brought to earth by the Mother of God. Block Rosary neighbors PRAY together; Block Rosary Neighbors STAY together.”

(*source – Block Rosary Crusade Nigeria website)

With this, it gave me a feeling of wanting to have both my kids be as active as I was at church before. It wouldn’t  just bring them closer to Him but also would definitely bring out the best in them. Most parents would agree with me in that fact for sure.

This really calls for the Stef that was… thanks for the Blessed Virgin Mary’s visit and I hope it won’t be the last.