Saturday, June 13, 2015

Crocheting a Summer Necklace

I really don't know why I am attracted to any shade of green that when I saw Oombawka Design's Forever Summer Necklace and Bracelet set, deciding to make one was no effort at all. Maybe because in my mind, I imagined having a similar color of thread and beads in my stash. Great! It didn't take long for me to assemble the needed materials.

I made two strands of necklace that I immediately gave to a friend before I could take good photos of them. Now I'm preparing this post. Too late for me to realize that. So is there any better idea than making a new one?

Thread, plenty. Beads, more than enough. I remember buying additional packs recently. I don't want to run out of green beads ;)

Here, take a look...

So, how do you like it? Actually, that's just one necklace photographed in three different views.

After making the Sweetheart Beaded Choker the first time, I was so inspired that I told myself, "I'm definitely going to make more of these!" So that explains this seeming addiction to crocheting beaded necklaces. My boss suggested I use swarovski crystals. Wow! Isn't that a grandeous idea?! Will definitely try that one day... after saving a fortune!? Maybe Rhondda could suggest a special thread for that project?

Isn't green really cool? Well, it's been starting to rain every afternoon in my part of the globe since this month of June. But I still wish I could beat the summer heat by wearing light colored tops that would make a perfect match to my Forever Summer Necklace. 

Have a nice weekend! Oh, it's a holiday today in my country, in celebration of Independence Day, so let me say, "have a nice long weekend!"

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Sweetheart Beaded Choker

This is my own version of the Sweetheart Beaded Choker by Oombawka Design. I fell in love with this the first time I saw it a couple of months ago. I was able to post this photo in Instagram and Facebook but failed to write about it despite several attempts. While I was doing this, I've been wondering why it was so named. "Sweetheart," intrigued, I read the post a number of times to get an idea as to the story behind it. I gave the photos a scrutiny. Do the beads have anything to do with the name? Hmmm, I don't think so!

How about the stitches --- the special stitch. Oh, yes, could it be the shell stitch? Two hdc, ch 2, two hdc. Oh, well, I rest my case to Rhondda to reveal the making of her Sweetheart Beaded Choker. Rhondda is the person behind Oombawka Design. 

I liked working on this pattern. It was very easy to follow. Doing the shell stitches was so addicting, I had no difficulty memorizing the steps as I went along. I was able to finish the choker in a few minutes. 

By the way, I already made a second choker, as requested by a friend, using the same pattern but with some modifications. Not only that. I also discovered another of her bracelet patterns. Now, I couldn't wait to make another post! 

Thank you, Oombawka Designs, for sharing your creation! I'm wearing this with our office uniform.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Going Barefoot on a Summer Dream Getaway

This is one of those days when you leave the house, late for work, walk down five blocks to the bus stop under the scorching heat of the sun. For each stride you take, you feel a strong urge to plunge into the tempting waters of the beach or swimming pool.

I'm no swimmer so I really don't have any other choice but stand by the gutter of the pool to watch people frolic. At times, I do regret having dropped my swimming lessons in one of the four P.E. subjects required in college. 

Seated in the bus, feeling eeewww, a few minutes after finally landing on a vacant seat, I still continue to imagine the blue waters. I close my eyes and for a moment I see myself walking along white sands barefoot. Barefoot! Now, I remember those cute sandals I crocheted the previous year. Where have they all gone? Oh, yes, how could I forget? I have given out several pairs to some friends and colleagues at work.

Using blue and light green variegated yarn, here are two pairs I made, inspired by the Bohemian barefoot sandals pattern from Chandi's Expression Fiber Arts. Perfect with those newly pedicured nails!

Credits to Haniel and her mom for wearing these Crocheted Barefoot Sandals. 
Thank you, Haniel, for sharing this photo.
See and read more about barefoot sandals in my other posts, Crocheting Barefoot Sandals and Bohemian Barefoot Sandals Showcase in LeBlanc

Enjoy the rest of your summer holiday!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Moshi is crying again!

Credits to Ayana Grace for this photo

"Moshi!" Everybody would shout everytime Moshi cries incessantly. Well, we couldn't enjoy watching TV peacefully, that's why. Going 12 years old, Moshi has revealed so much of himself to us ... to me. He would only cry when nature calls and whenever he would like us to do things for him such as getting his chair and beddings in place. Last and worse of all, he cries when he hears thunder and big bangs like fireworks. 

Tonight he won't stop crying again.  Well, didn't I tell you? No use shouting and calling for him to stop. See, he simply saw it coming. The what??? Uhmmm... nothing but the downpour of rain! 

Click here Moshi is crying, rain is coming! and get to know more about our dear Moshi. 

The rain has stopped now and Moshi is quiet once more. Oh, what a relief!

Moshi, taking a breath of fresh air after the rain

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Simply Mixed: French Beans with Zucchini and Chinese Cabbage

Saturday morning. Late breakfast... again! Not in the mood to go marketing but my hubby asks for fish for lunch. So to the market I must go! I really did.

I was fortunate to buy my favorites--- tuna, salmon belly and white pampano. 

Next stop, the veggie stall. But wait, my favorite veggie vendor is gone! Her stall is closed! Sad! That meant I really had no other choice but to visit the next stall. Looking at the vegetable display while thinking of a dish to prepare for lunch, a different kind of string beans caught my attention. The lady vendor said it's French beans (haricot vert or filet beans, ooopppsss, the veggie vendor didn't tell me that. I google searched for the term :))

Definitely not green (Baguio) beans. This type is longer, thinner and crisp. They look skinny and shorter than the regular long string beans (sitaw) commonly seen in the market, I was intrigued all the more when the lady said it's best for salads, though she gave me another idea--- sauteed. 

Excitedly, I went home to try my new dish.

1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1 large tomato, sliced
shrimps, peeled
1 bunch french beans, ends removed
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1tbsp leeks
3-5 tbsps water
1/2 small zucchini, sliced thinly
1 small eggplant, sliced
salt and ground pepper to taste
2 small bunches of bok choy (Chinese cabbage), end of stem removed


  1. Place oil in pan.
  2. Sautee onion, tomatoes and shrimps.
  3. Add french beans, oyster sauce and leeks. Add water. Allow to simmer for one minute.
  4. Add zucchini and eggplant slices. 
  5. Season with salt and pepper according to taste.
  6. Add cabbage. 
Look at this! I was able to hit the perfect C-R-U-N-C-H! Hmmm... I just love it!

Fried fish is an ideal match! Oh, I regret having bought only 100 grams of the French beans. They must be good with butter, garlic and herbs, too!

Happy weekend!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Confessions of a 90-year-old Mother's Daughter

Everytime I read and receive greetings about mothers and Mother's Day, I couldn't help but feel awkward and embarrassed. Firstly because I am far from being the godly woman described in Proverbs 31: 10-31. Secondly, because I have been guilty of defying God's command in Ephesians 6:1. 

Last Sunday, as it has always been every Mother's Day in the past years, our church honored all mothers present during the service. I felt my heart crushing as I joined the other ladies who were called to occupy the first few rows of pews. Yes, I managed to smile and greet back all who greeted me, though deep within my heart was crumbling in humiliation. 

Surprisingly, our Pastor didn't preach about the Proverbs 31 woman. Instead, he expounded on the first nine verses of Proverbs 31. These verses talk about King Lemuel's lessons of chastity and temperance, lessons he learned from his own mother.

I confess I haven't been a good daughter during my childhood and teenage years. I am no exception to delayed obedience and other antics or offenses children commit against their mothers (parents). I would make studying or doing my homework a good excuse for not doing household chores. I would miss meals if not allowed to attend parties during and after graduating from high school. Today, human that I am, I lose my patience with my 90-year old mother's forgetfulness, especially when she asks the same questions over and over again, everytime she misses her medicines. It irates me when she confuses night with day, when she would repeatedly ask where we've been or where we are going and when she gets up from bed several times at night to take a look if everybody has arrived home.

How I hate myself for losing my patience and reacting negatively to all these changes my mother is normally going through. Praises to God for His own patience, forgiveness and saving work of grace in my life through the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, without which all my sins would unceasingly haunt me to death. 

Here is a photo of my mother in her early years.

Well, my mother was literally my first teacher. Not only did she teach me my ABC in first grade, she also taught me how to read musical notes, do mathematical operations using decimals, run a sewing machine and dress a chicken even before my other teachers in grade school did. Best of all, she inspired me to fall in love with a classic and special craft that has caused me to constantly chase the rainbow. Click this link to read why. Oh, but don't forget to get back here to claim your Mother's Day treat! 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Kilawing Labanos (Sauteed Radish): A legacy from my mother-in-law

Today, while reviewing some old posts in my dashboard, I came upon this article I posted almost three years ago. Click this link A Legacy from my Mother-in-Law to read. The post features a recipe book owned by my husband's mother that he (Billy, my husband) gave me after we got married. Tomorrow, being Mother's Day, I thought of making a sequel to it by featuring a dish I learned from this book. That is to honor its owner, the woman whom God used to bring to life my husband, even if I never came to see or know her in person. 

So here, I'm featuring the original recipe of one of Billy's favorite dishes found in Aling Charing's recipe book. Oh, here's my disclaimer for you who might also own this recipe book. I took effort at translating the recipe because almost the whole book is written in Filipino.

Kilawing Labanos

8 medium-sized radish, sliced thinly
1/4 kilo librillo at lapay ng baka (may substitute shrimps or pork)
1 onion
3 tomatoes
3 cloves garlic
miso (soy paste)
fish sauce according to taste
1/2 cup water
ground pepper


  1. Wash librillo and lapay. Boil until tender while preparing other ingredients, then cut into chunks.
  2. Sautee garlic, onion and tomatoes in oil. 
  3. Add librillo and lapay
  4. Add soy paste. Season with fish sauce. 
  5. Add 1/2 cup water. Allow to simmer.
  6. Add vinegar and ground pepper just before the radish is cooked. Do not mix until the water has boiled. 
During our first few years of marriage, I tried this recipe using pork chunks and pork liver instead of librillo and lapay and without miso. But since Billy recovered from mild stroke several years ago until now, I have learned to substitute pork with fresh tuna chunks which he would still mistake as pork. 

Have you tried this dish before? If you still haven't, you're  simply missing so much in your dinner table!

Happy Mother's Day to you, and you, and you!!!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Simple and Easy Crocheted Friendship Necklace

Inspired by Oombawka Design, I attempted to make my own version using almost the same color but different shapes for the bead frame and the beads. This is what came out.

I wanted to send a gift to an old friend but I've been going home late from work. I didn't have much time to go out and buy something so I browsed through my Pinterest board, Crochet Patterns I Like. The goal was to look for a pattern that I could do in one sitting because the kind lady who offered to bring the gift was leaving the following day. I had to finish it before my eyelids drop for the night.

Oombawka Design's pattern for the Simply Easy Crochet Necklace was exactly what I was looking for. Simple and easy to make, indeed, it was! Instead of the usual friendship bracelet as souvenir, a friendship necklace it has become. Symbolizing a long-lasting relationship, I thought the circular bead frame I found from my stocks was just perfect! Not only that, the chain around the neck could be adjusted to make it longer or shorter. Nice color, too! I enjoyed crocheting this because the pattern was very easy to follow. 

Oh, by the way, I received these from my friend. 

Letters and pastries from Rena

Then a few days after I sent her this letter with necklace enclosed, she sent me a PM, saying that she received and liked the gift. 

Look, here are photos of her wearing the necklace. Isn't that cute? Perfect on her white blouse!

Thank you, Rena, for sending these photos to me :)  :0  :))

Thank you, Rhondda, for sharing your pattern! Looking forward to making another project with you.
Linking to:
Life on Lakeshore Drive

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Sauteed Corned Beef with String Beans: Fast Food Meal

This is one of those days when I would prefer to just spend more time in bed but I'm left with no other choice but force myself to get up to fulfil some domestic duties. One, prepare food. Two, the garbage. 

Opening the cupboard oftentimes offers a speedy solution. I see a can of corned beef grinning down at me. The veggie bin also has more to offer. There are string beans. So after frying three eggs for a late breakfast for my two daughters and myself, I use the same pan to cook the corned beef. Presto! Lunch is ready!

1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1 medium tomato, sliced
1 can corned beef
1 bunch of string beans, cut into 2 inches long
salt to taste

  1. Spray oil on pan.
  2. Sautee onion and tomato slices. 
  3. Add corned beef. 
  4. Add string beans. Allow to simmer until string beans are tender.
  5. Add salt according to taste. 

This is one such good idea if you are looking for a simple and easy dish. Exactly what busy moms and beginning cooks need.

Oh, yes, I was just right on time in bringing the garbage bag out for the garbage truck to pick up. So now, I jump back to bed for some social networking. May yours be a relaxing weekend, as well.
Linking to:

Life on Lakeshore Drive

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Zucchini-Spinach Veggie Pizza

A few days before the Holy Week last month, I bought two packs of pizza dough, anticipating that my family, being pizza lovers, would go for a movie marathon at home during the four-day break. So here's what I did.

1 piece Bambi Premium pizza dough
1/3 cup Del Monte Filipino Style tomato sauce
1/2 cup Mozarella cheese, grated
1/2 small zucchini, sliced thinly
1 large tomato, sliced thinly
1/4 red bell pepper, sliced
1/4 green bell pepper, sliced
2 tbsps button mushrooms, sliced
1 bunch spinach leaves
1/4 cup bacon, fried and diced
1 medium white onion, sliced thinly into rings
8-10 thin slices of Quickmelt cheese

  1. Spread tomato sauce over the pizza dough.
  2. Sprinkle half of the grated Mozarella cheese over tomato sauce.
  3. Arrange slices of zucchini, tomato, bell pepper, mushroom, spinach leaves, bacon and onion rings on top of the cheese.
  4. Sprinkle the remaining mozarella cheese over the vegetables and top with quickmelt cheese slices.

         5. Bake in oven at 180 degrees C for 15-20 minutes or until cheese melts.
Here is what came out. 

Time to serve it with your favorite drink. Well, guess what, that made me crave for soft drinks!

It was so tempting. I made this very late at night and I wasn't able to resist 'til the morning. 
Look, who's taking the first slice?!

Now back to the movie marathon. Oh, wait, I made another one, but added more cheese.
Here it is--- NO MEAT this time, just fully loaded with cheese!!!!

Hhmmm... yum, yum, yum! 'Til next pizza time!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Pan de Amerikana: the Upside Down Resto in Marikina City

Telling a person that he or she has turned one's life upside down gives a romantic undertone. But in this post, I use the expression in its literal sense. Take a look at this photo to get a clear picture of what I mean. 

Credits to The Woman and Her Exiguous Aspirations for this photo.

Now, see what I mean?  I wasn't able to take a view of the whole facade as shown above when we stopped over for breakfast in this place. I just had enough time to take a portion of the whole view. Look at the photo below.

This is Pan de Amerikana Bakery and (Upside Down) Restaurant located at 92 Ordonez Street, Marikina City where you can enjoy pan de sal and various breakfast menus anytime of the day. 

Map from Google
 This is what the place looks like up-close. 

The entrance

I know, I know, I'm not good at taking photos, but do you notice the unique design at the entrance door.

Come on in! 

Photo by Grace Kayanan

Near the counter, here's Mr. Chef with his information board featuring the holiday schedule of the restaurant.

For a change after so many years in the history of our hospital, the organizers of our summer team building this year proposed a unique and bright idea of enjoying a "Tour D' Art" escapade, to which a majority agreed. Our itinerary was set for us to have breakfast at Pan de Amerikana at 7:00 am. The whole team was very particular that we reach our first destination on time so each one was asked to place breakfast orders days ahead so that the restaurant staff could serve us all, more or less 30 people, on time. 

We were offered a variety of choices for both rice meal or sandwiches for breakfast. For the rice meal--- beef tapa, tocino, Ilocano longganisa, daing na bangus, corned beef and mushroom and cheese omelet. They also serve pan de sal sandwiches. Two pieces of large pan de sal for a single order! 

This is just one of the two pieces of pan de sal with tuna and hot coffee served to my seatmate.
Rice meal or two-piece pandesal sandwich plus coffee or hot chocolate or juice for P 100.00! 
Don't you think it's very affordable?

This was what I had for breakfast.
Mushroom and cheese omelet with rice and hot chocolate. 
While waiting for the food to be served, one could never fail to notice this nook where framed photos of selected veteran movie actors and actresses of different era are displayed.

Looking up, this design is seen underneath the roof where floral decorative vines are suspended.

These pieces of furnitures mounted on the ceiling are noticeably amazing!

A piano on the ceiling??!!
And a dining set, too!
No, no, no, you're not seeing any magic here. See the photo on the left below. That's me reaching for the table hanging on the roof.

Now, look at the photo on the right. Oh, yes, you're right, that's still me, turned upside down. Don't you think it's cool? 

While waiting for the others to finish their meal, there was enough time to survey the area. I didn't feel the need to use the rest room but I managed to take some shots outside. 

That's me standing just outside the rest room which was rated 3/5 by one of my colleagues. Furnished with mirror and bidet, with the wash area located just outside the comfort room.

A couple of sink with adequate supply of water and liquid soap.

There were other displays to view around the area. 

Well, it was a nice experience we had in this place. One-of-a-kind exteriors. Unique interiors. Good ambiance. Scrumptious food at an affordable price. Clean rest rooms. 

Hey, look what I found! 

Here's a screen shot of their page featuring our group having fun during breakfast.

You are welcome to LIKE their page. Click here to view.

Time to leave now to have more fun in our next destination, the Pinto Museum in Antipolo, Rizal. See you there!