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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Fresh Strawberry Pie for Dad on Father's Day and a Recipe

Instead of buying Dad a gift that he can't use or don't need, we  got him a starwberry pie instead.  I asked  Dad if he want a slice  of the pie when he arrived and he said yes, so I cut him one.  I can tell that he enjoyed it because he didn't stop until he was done with it.  
  just wish that  the strawberries are cut up into  quarters because they are too big to fit in a kisser lol.
 We originally planned onbuying him a coconut pie but sadly, there's none.
My father-in-law has a sweet tooth so he enjoys this kind of treat.  I think he would live on dessert if he could lol.
I think I can make this one as  it looks very simple to make.  I found this recipe at tasteofhome.com (thanks Sue Jurack for posting the recipe):

Ingredients

1 unbaked pastry shell (9 inches)

3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup water
1 package (3 ounces) strawberry gelatin
4 cups sliced fresh strawberries
Fresh mint, optional

Directions
  • Line unpricked pastry shell with a double thickness of heavy-duty foil. Bake at 450° for 8 minutes. Remove foil; bake 5 minutes longer. Cool on a wire rack.
  • In a saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and water until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in gelatin until dissolved.
  • Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes or until slightly cooled
  • Meanwhile, arrange strawberries in the crust. Pour gelatin mixture over berries. Refrigerate until set. Garnish with mint if desired.Yield: 6-8 servings.

Simple Ways to Spice up Your Marriage

Marriage can be a wonderful and rewarding institution. However, like anything else you find success with in your life, great marriages take work. Sure, there is the honeymoon phase in which everything seems perfect and it seems life couldn’t be better, but once that’s over we are often left feeling empty and even depressed at times. Some couples even begin to feel like they have made a grave mistake. The good news is it doesn’t have to be like that. You can shape the course of your life and your marriage with just a few simple steps to keep things fresh.

Show Appreciation Often

We sometimes get caught up in our lives and forget the simple things like letting the one we love know he or she is still cherished. Financial troubles, children, the bustle of everyday chores and so much more can get in the way of our relationships. When we let go and begin to take each other for granted, that’s when our problems can develop. Take a few minutes to send roses from FTD or even small gifts. Just spending a few minutes on the phone to a florist can do wonders for keeping your marriage fresh. Remember, it is 2015, you don’t have to be a man to send flowers. Wives can have flowers sent to their husbands just as easily.

Schedule and Keep a Date Night

No matter what your schedule, you can and should plan at least one night each week to spend time with your significant other. You can do this on any budget. If you can afford a night of wining and dining out on the town great, otherwise just ordering a delivery pizza and watching a movie will suffice. The important thing is investing that time each week solely on each other. If there are children, hire a sitter for that one night. Family activities are fun but married couples must take time for intimacy and alone time.

Keep the Sex Exciting

Here we come to the nitty gritty, sex. Being with the same person for years and years can become old hat so to speak. You will have to work hard to find new and interesting things to do in order to keep your sex life healthy. Consider role playing, sexy lingerie, a variety of toys and other such things to keep things from going stagnant in the bedroom. Quite honestly, the possibilities are almost endless for maneuvers which will keep your sex life fun and ever changing.


Some people are just blessed with the compatibility it takes to stay together for 50 years but more times than not you’ll find that loads of work and patience, as well as forgiving short comings are the reason behind these long lasting marriages. As Bob Marley said, ‘“The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.” This is true when it comes to marriage. You’ll have to learn to yield quite a bit and remember, no one is perfect. However, you can have a picture perfect marriage with some work and perseverance.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Okonomiyaki - Japanese Savory Pancake

This is one of the products that I got from the "try the World" box.  I thought it would be  special if I try to make it for Father's Day.  My husband has been to Japan quite a few times when he was still in the Navy so he is  used to eating Japanese food.  This okonomiyaki kit is very easy to prepare.  I like the fact that the  instruction is available in four langues including  English, which is awesome.  
Okonomiyaki i-s a popular dish in Japan.  It is an omelette-like pancake  made with a variety of savory  toppings.  The kit includes the basic ingredients needed to  make the savory pancakes.  The pink bag  is the yum powder, the yellow bag is the tempura crisps, green bag is the seaweed.
How to  mix the batter:

  • Add 3/4 cup of water to a large bowl follwed by the yamn powder and mix until dissolved.  Add the okonomiyaki batter mix and blend until dissolved.

I did not  have  head cabbage  in the fridge so I just picked some fresh kale  from the garden and chopped it finely.  I think I had a cup of kale in there.  I added two eggs to the batter and then added the  kale and the  the tenka or the tempura  crisps.  
I cooked one side of the bacon to make sure that  the one I will put on top of the omelette  is already  cooked.
The batter makes two  pancake/omelette.  You can use an electric griddle or   just an ordinary frying pan.  Coat the pan with olive oil  in low heat and then  pour half of the batter.  Soread it into a circular shape.
Wait till it is golden brown and then put the  bacon on top.
Slowly flip the  pancake.
When both of the pancake  is done, sprinkle the  green seaweed and you can add hot sauce or any kind of sauce as well.  I used sriracha on mine.
I cut each pancake in four  slices and served it with  pineapples slices and takaokaya or seaweed.  
The kids thought it was weird to have pancake  tha is savory but they like it because of the bacon in it, lol.
The kale was perfect  for this recipe.  Hubby thought it was really good.  He gave it two thumbs up.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Exploring the Benefits of Grass Fed Beef

There are many known benefits of eating grass fed beef compared to grain-fed, not only ethical but also physical, and the following will attempt to give you a general idea of why you should consider switching. The ethical and physical benefits of grass fed beef, combined with the fact that it is the most environmentally sustainable method of farming, makes this topic very important on a number of different fronts.

Scientifically Proven Health Benefits for Humans

There have been many studies that show health benefits for people who eat beef and lamb that was raised on grass, or at the very least ate grass during the final six week period. The benefits seem to be particularly suited to people who do not eat much oily fish, which is almost three quarters of the population, because the grass fed cattle and lambs provide a great source of the much needed omega-3 fatty acids commonly found in fish.

Avoiding Unwanted Chemicals

Another healthy reason to avoid the usual beef and lamb that is commonly available is the fact that you will be avoiding many unwanted chemicals and pesticides that a lot of farms and suppliers use, or are contaminated with by accident. Grass fed beef is a more natural way of farming, and more like what was done in generations past.
In the past there were no pesticides or chemicals added to the feed, and the cattle were basically left to wander the fields and graze on the various grasses that grew naturally in each particular area. This method was obviously more natural, but it was also not as profitable which is why modern farming has changed so much for the worse.

Ethical Reasons

The benefits for humans have already been discussed here, but the reasons for eating grass fed beef don't stop there. If the ethics of eating meat is an important issue for you, and you value the welfare of the animals, then this method of farming is definitely something you should learn more about. The livestock are raised on a farm, grazing on naturally occurring grasses, so their quality of life is much higher than that of livestock raised in a more “modern” farming scheme that is becoming all too common in today's society.

More Benefits of Grass Fed Beef

Organically raised grass fed beef is not just good for you and the environment, it is also much tastier and lower in saturated fat than the alternatives that are commonly found in your local supermarket. When raised this way, the resulting beef has a much more complete protein profile, as well as containing all of the essential amino acids that your body requires to function properly and recover from injuries, exercise, and simple day to day living. The B vitamins contained within are great for your brain, and it has the best form of iron for your body (haem iron), so it really is a food for your whole body and mind.

The best way to find out what all of the fuss is about is to try it for yourself. Obviously you won't be able to see or feel all of the environmental and ethical benefits for yourself, but those can be studied, and you will definitely be able to witness the increased flavour with your own taste buds.

Father's Day Dinner

We had a simple Father's Day celebration.  We started the day by giving  hubby  the crafts we made for him  then I cooked   as Japanese style  pancake, a savory one.  Then we went to church  after at noon and  visited my father-in-law afterwards.  We decided to go to Eat and Park to have our dinner.
 The little Miss ordered a garden salad.  I wish that my son would order something  healthier and different rather than Mac and Cheese or Grilled cheese, sigh.
Hubby had a chicken Parmesan with a salad.  I always had the Nantucket cod with rice and broccoli. 
I was going to prepare a nice dinner but we stayed a little bit longer at Dad's that we decided to just  eat dinner  at the restaurant.  We seldom dine out so it was a  good opportunity.   Besides, it gave me a break from the kitchen.  It was  a great dinner and we all enjoyed it.

Friday, June 19, 2015

1890 Kitchen

When we had the chance to visit the Brooke County Historical Museum in Wellsburg, WV, The very first thing that were attracted to  is this  1890 kitchen display.  It's pretty neat  to see how the kitchen in 1800s looked like.
 Even   those  era, the kitchen here in the United States is still supermodern compared to the 1900s that  I have een in my country lol.
I mean, look at it, it  looks modern already.  Well, at least  from my standard because growing up, I have never seen these stuff in the place where I grew up.
 Even my daughter find it really neat.
If you want to see  kitchen styles back then, you should visit this museum, they really9 have  classic display of things from way back in  1800s.  

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Chewy and Delicious Double Chocolate Mocha Cookies

I am not  a baker and I am not fond of  baking but there are times when I am in the mood to face the challenge, I  would do it  especially if the recipe is easier to  follow.  I normally ask my husband to bake because that is his strong suit in the kitchen but with this one, I felt the need to do it.   Okay, this  chocolate chip cookie is so chewy and delicious. Here's the recipe:
Ingredients:
  • Entire bag of Glutino  chocolate chip cookie mix
  • 1/4 cup NuStevia Cocoa Syrup
  • 1 tbsp  instant coffee  granules
  • 2/3 cup softened, unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp NuStevia vanilla

Direction:
  • Preheat oven to 350.  Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment or aluminum foil 
  • Mix cocoa syrup with coffee granules. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, beat butter until fluffy.  Add dry ingredients.  Beat until mixture is light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs and vanilla.
  • Drop one cookie scoop  of dough into cookie sheets.  Leave about two inches  between cookies.

Bake for 12 minutes.  Cool completely and transfer to an airtight container
The coffee  in it makes it really smells heavenly.  
The sweet tooth of the family  would agree how  delicious these cookies are.  
 These cookies are "sweet tooth" approved.  If you want a little different from a cookie, try this Chewy and Delicious  Double Chocolate Mocha Cookies.  It is soooo good!!!!
"The founding mothers left an enduring constitutional  legacy for those of us with sensitive constitutions by sharing their secret chocolate chop cookie recipe.  Keep it yourself" Glutino.  Live Fully.  We are what we  eat.

Make Your Summer Party Diet and Fitness Friendly!

Enjoying fun occasions outdoors with friends and family is what summer is all about, and it is a great time of year to host a party at your home, because you can make full use of outdoor spaces like your garden, patio or pool. Of course, if you are dieting or are generally trying to follow a fitness plan, the idea of a party can be somewhat off putting – surely it will mean fattening foods, alcohol, and generally breaking the plan you have stuck so hard to for the day?

Actually, you can create a really fun summer party that will not be a challenge for your willpower. By serving up healthy food and drinks and arranging for activities that involve a lot of moving around, you and any of your friends who are also watching their fitness can have fun – and so can any guests who aren't so size or fitness conscious!
Here are some ideas:

Food

Every party needs food, but just because you are going for healthy options doesn't mean you are limited to boring carrot and celery sticks with low fat dips!

Summer is barbecue season, and grilling is a very healthy way to cook meat or fish as you don't need to add any extra fat. Use lean cuts of meat like steaks, chicken or turkey fillets, or fish on the barbecue, and if you want to do burgers, make them yourself using the leanest ground beef. You can also throw vegetables like onions, corn on the cob, and asparagus on the grill as healthy sides.

You can also serve things like rice salad, pasta salad and potato salad, but avoid using full fat dressings (especially mayonnaise) and consider other options like fat free yoghurt based ones.

Beverages

If you decide to serve alcoholic beverages, remember that the lowest calorie options are wine or hard liquor with calorie free mixers. Beer is the most calorie and carb laden drink, so if you are supplying beer for guests who want it, make sure there are some lower calorie options like diet cocktails and wine for yourself and anyone else who is watching their intake but still wants to drink at a party.

Activities

Encourage people to dress for an active day, and if you have a pool, make sure you supply things like balls and noodles that people can play with, rather than lilos for lying around doing nothing on! You can consider making an activity the centerpiece of your day, for example with mechanical bull rental, paintball, a softball match or a dance competition for your guests. These things ensure a fun and often hilarious time, but also get guests moving and sweating – ideal for those of you who are trying to lose weight or get fitter! You can also have things like ping pong, swing ball, or volleyball set up for people to play if you have the space.


Sticking to a fitness plan when you have a party can be easier than it sounds, and you can also make it the best party of the year for any friends who are also trying to reach weight or fitness goals!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Baked Wings and Vegetable Salad

This is what we had   for dinner  yesterday.  I baked some wings and made some salad.  Here's a simple recipe.

Ingredients:
  • A dozen of portioned  chicken  legs and wings
  • 1/2 cup of  ranch dressing
  • 1 tbsp of sriracha
  • 1 tbsp of fresh dill (from our garden)
  • salt and pepper.
  • 1/2 stick of butter, melted

Direction:
  • Boil the  chicken  in a pot with water.  I always bouil the chicken first because I save the broth for other cooking needs.  Add a chicken cube or of you don't have any, just  cut an onion and half and thouw it in a pot.  Add salt and pepper.  Boil it for 20 minutes.
  • Removed the chicken from the pot.
  • Combine the otheringredients and pour it on the chicken,  Make sure that they are covered  with the mixture before  putting it in the oven.  
  • Bake it for  30 minutes.  

The chicken was so delicious.  It is a perfect dish to eat with vegetable salad.  
 My secret weapon in making my kids eat good is   by enticing them how the food look like.  Kids love to tear up  organized  stuff so it is the same way with food.  They love to dif in  and get the  part thet they love.  My kids don't have problem eating veggies which is  I am so grateful for.
It was a nice  dinner for us.  It doesn't really take long to make a good dinner for the family.  You just have to figure out what they love to eat and then prepare it.

How Climate Impacts Wine

You may know which wines please your palate, but did you know that the climate where the grapes are grown can have a huge impact on that taste? Whether a grape is cultivated in cool or warm climates can be a leading factor in whether the acidity levels are raised or if they end up being lower end of the spectrum. Cool climates usually result in higher overall acidity levels whereas warmer climates produce grapes with lower acidity. Warmer areas also are responsible for riper fruits notes, and you will taste a tarter note with grapes from cooler vicinities.

In general, however, warm and dry climates are more conducive to a successful vineyard. Mild winters are preferred for most in the industry because harsh, cool temps can wreak havoc on the grapes. The absence of traditional winters is often preferred to avoid frost and other detrimental conditions. It is for this reason that wine regions tend to be found closer in proximity to the equator. If you look at regions most populated with vineyards, you can see that a majority of them are located within 20 to 50 degrees on either side of this line. Learn more about what affects the growth and cultivation of wine as well as which regions produce your favorite reds and whites by clicking this link and checking out the infographic.
  International Wine of the Month Club - Gold Medal Wine

Friday, June 12, 2015

Travel Gluten Free this Month with Glutino #ProductReview

Glutino is focusing their them on traveling with gluten-free this month of June. They sent me some snacks and other gluten-free products to try for our road trip adventures. I received this box of goodies to try and I am  happy to say that we have been  enjoying them since it arrived.  
In the box includes:
  • 3 packs of  wafer bites
  • 1 bag of pretzel chips
  • 1 bag of pretzel sticks
  • 2 bags of animal crackers
  • 1 pack of sea salt cracker chips
  • 1 chocolate vanila creme
  • 1 box double chocolate brownie mix
  • 1 pizza crust mix

We recently had  a chance to  explore the  Brooke County Historical Museum in Wellsburg and I brought a pack of this gluten-free original animal crackers for us to munch on  while we travel.  It was a perfect snack to bring.  I think I enhjoyed animal crackers more than my kids does, lol.  
Double Chocolate Brownie is entrely too chocolaty.  My kids baked this  by themeselves when I was out gardening.  IT was a delightful surprise when I came in the house and the  brownie smells just swept through my nose.  You can check how they did on their baking escapade though the link.

"An Ocean of Delight" that's what it is with this sea salt flavored  snack cracchers.  It is great  for snacking when my kids and I are out in the patio reading our books.  
You don't need anything else to eat with this, just a cup of juice or a bottle of water is perfect.  It is delicious as it is right out the bag.
 I love this pretzel sticks, they are super crunchy and  light.  This was what we brought as our snack during our Mother's Day trekking adventure in Tomlinson Run  State Park.  This reminds me of the sweet potato  fries that my mother used to make for us to snack on when we were  growing up.  They are delicious!
I think  my children's favorite of all  is this wondrously rich chocolate vanila creme.  They polished this pack the moment they  opened it.  

They love squeezing it together  and let the creme comes out in the tiny holes of the cookies.
It's a fun and delicious snack to have and it's gluten-free!  I think it's great that Glutino made these gluten free  snacks suoer delicious.  Gone are the days when some consumer would say "Oh it's gluten-free, I bet it's boring and bland!"
For my birthday this year, the kids and I decided to make   pizza.  We used the pizza crust that  Glutino sent us and it was  very easy to prepare.  You can check out our  happy bonding  making this yummy pizza.  It's loaded with veggies and turkey sausage, yum, yum, yum!
I loVE HAving the  gluten-free all purpose flour at home.  Even my  9-year old little chef  keep surprising us with some baked goodies and  lately this gluten-free pancakes that she made and also posted here in my blog.
Here's what we  did with the  wafer bites.  We made some WaferKebabs for snack, it was a hit!  You may check the post through the link.
Last but not the least, it is always  best to save the best for last because this chewy and delicious Double Chocolate Mocha Cookies  were the bomb.  I baked this after my  children's  school olympic.  My son and husband love thise  cookies.  The coffee and   cocoa in it just made it extra delicious and aromatic.
Thank you so much once again Glutino for this  healthy  products!

Don't forget to check the link for recipes of each  goodies!

Disclosure: The owner of this blog was NOT financially compensated to write this review.  I was provided with the products mentioned  in exchange of my honest  opinion which may differ from yours.  

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This blog does not focus on food only but also include different kinds of spices that affects our lives. So hang in here and explore the world of fun with us. Please bear in mind that little bit of this and a little dash of that makes a Sumptuous Life!

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A work-at-home-mom (WAHM) with  two  lovely kids and a loving husband.  Passionate in writing about  family, product reviews, and  other related articles.  A Mom, a Wife,  a Blogger/Writer, rolled into one.