Thursday, March 21, 2013

Gray Areas

They say gray is the new white. What I like most about this multi-toned neutral is the ease of mixing other stylish colors with it. It has a way of making other colors pop. It exudes sophistication in a subtle way. I think it's the best. paint. ever. period.

I have been thinking of repainting our bedroom walls with light warm gray. I don't think it's gloomy if you have the perfect splashes of color and appropriate lighting to pair it with. Based on some of my readings, it is best to use flat paint instead of semi-gloss or high gloss otherwise it will look too "industrialized".

I've been drooling over these beautiful design ideas via Pinterest:



Le Sigh! I'm already going ga-ga over gray painted walls.  I can't wait to paint our bedroom walls!

Happy Thursday!

{All Images via Pinterest}

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Roasted Chicken Pesto Wrap

I have made this impromptu dish yesterday as an afternoon snack for the hubby and dinner for me. =) This recipe was inspired by my favorite Starbucks' sandwich: Roasted Chicken Pesto and Shiitake Mushroom on Flat Bread.

I'm a big fan of the pesto and shiitake mushroom combination. Both really go well together.

Ingredients:
  • 2 pieces free-range chicken breast fillets (without the skin)
  • 5 tablespoons of pesto (you can add more to your liking)
  • 4 pieces of shiitake mushrooms (slivered)
  • 15 pieces of cherry tomatoes
  • salt
  • pepper
  • parmesan cheese


Directions:
  1. Cut the chicken breast fillets into bite-sized pieces
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper
  3. Combine the pesto, shiitake mushrooms, cherry tomatoes and parmesan cheese with the chicken
  4. Bake for 50 minutes at 350 degrees F
  5. Wrap in pita bread

This dish is bursting with flavor and tastes fabulous!

Want some? =)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Homemade Iced Coffee

We only have two seasons here in the Philippines: Wet and Dry. It's because we are located near the Equator. It's a good thing our land is surrounded by a body of water.

It's officially summer. The days are hotter than normal. As I have mentioned in a previous post, one way to beat the sweltering summer heat is to drink plenty of iced beverages. So, I made iced coffee. I'm a cold coffee fanatic. I usually buy ice-blended from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf or Starbucks but for instances I am unable to go out of the house, this will do.


I made a hot cup of coffee with 2 teaspoons of brown sugar, poured it over a glass filled with ice then add the skim milk. Oh and I used a blue-striped eco-friendly paper straw from my Kikkerland stash. 

Refreshing!



Monday, March 18, 2013

To Market, To Market...


As I continue my journey to mindful eating, a visit to weekend markets is starting to become a regular stint. I love checking out the local produce. It's more environment-friendly buying from the source because it doesn't have a middleman and has not traveled vast distances to get to you. Organic produce is also cheaper compared to the ones in the supermarket.

My loot from yesterday's Sidcor Sunday Market:



Organic Green Bell Peppers 
































Organic Cherry Tomatoes from Benguet State University's Stall
































American Eggplant



































































Kale
It looks a bit different from the normal Kale, however I did some research and found out that this is related to the Tuscan Kale

A sense of occasion and a festive vibe is always present at farmers' markets. It's nice talking to farmers  and their family members or staff because of their knowledge and passion about food. They talk about growing, preparing, and storing food. I actually could learn something every visit. 

A few favorite stalls from Sidcor Sunday Market:

When I finally arrived at their stall, all the Kale was gone...
This is where I bought Kale. There were only 3 bunches left.
I also found these:

Someday, when my husband and me have our own place, I'll be having an herb garden.
Bougainvillea
Habanera Chillies
Are these forget me knots?
orchids
There are even a few stalls that sell pets. Mike can't get over these Kois. He loves fish.

Let's continue to buy local and support our farmers. 

Remember, some things are just better fresh. <3 <3 <3

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Yoga at Home

For instances when heavy traffic or crazy schedules can't get me to yoga class on time, I practice at home.


Establishing a home practice requires a certain amount of effort and great discipline.

I  set aside a space in my bedroom dedicated to my yoga practice. I personally use podcasts or watch a 60 -90 minute Vinyasa Flow video in YouTube for instruction and support. I have a Yoga Playlist in Itunes too. I use it as background music whenever I can clearly recall the series of poses in a previous class. I also like to light scented candles to set the mood and create a Zen atmosphere. I have also invested in a high-quality mat to aid me in deepening my yogic experience.

How do you practice yoga at home? Spill!

Namaste!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Bacon Crisp

Bacon. This is the main reason why I'm having trouble becoming a vegetarian. But, I only have some once in a while.

I made these tasty little morsels yesterday as an afternoon snack. I got the recipe from an old blog post of Ms. Janis Snell of Navy Bean. Instead of using Ritz Simply Socials, I used Fita biscuits.


I just wrapped a slice of bacon with each biscuit, sprinkled grated parmesan cheese and baked them for 2 hours for 250 degrees F. You need to bake them long enough for the grease to dry up.




Like the Tofu Stir-fry I made, these Bacon Crisps were gone in a flash.

This recipe is great for parties especially during cocktail hour.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Tofu Stir-Fry

I'm on a healthy lifestyle revolution right now! I've been cutting back my meat consumption by preparing more vegetarian recipes. Giving up meat progressively is a good practice. Hopefully it will become a transitional phase in becoming a full veggie but as of the moment I don't know if I can totally give up my meat intake but I can certainly lessen it. And, if I have to prepare a meat-based dish I go for the organic ones.

So, I prepared this Tofu-Stir Fry Recipe I got from Mariel's blog but with slight modifications.


Modifications:

  • I used flat-leaf Italian parsley instead of cilantro because it was out of stock from the supermarket.
  • I added 2 pieces of cayenne pepper (siling-labuyo), chopped
  • Instead of lemon juice, I used 6 pieces of squeezed calamansi
As instructed, I served it with hot rice and it was gone in an instant. This tofu recipe is packed with flavor. 

I love tofu but the only recipe I know how make by heart is Tokwa't Baboy (Beancurd and Pork) which is a very common Filipino dish. But now I have a new one and it was a hit with family members.

Thank you Mariel for the inspiration! 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

A Beachy Weekend at Nagsasa Cove

As the early signs of summer starts to appear, a few simple tips to beat the heat:
  1. Drink plenty of iced beverages
  2. Take a cold shower
  3. Go to the beach and take a swim
I just did tip number 3 last weekend. We went for a two and a half hour drive from Metro Manila to Pundaquit, a small fishing village located in the province of Zambales and then took a boat ride for an hour to Nagsasa Cove.

Riding the Banca

























During the boat ride...

























This rock reminds me of Mordor. LOL.


And the eagle has landed boat has docked
























   
    Here in the Philippines, every beach has a story to tell. After Anawangin rose to fame, it paved the way for other hidden coves in the Zambales region to be discovered. I have spoken to one of the residents of the island. According to him,  Nagsasa Cove wouldn't have been present if Mt. Pinatubo had not erupted in 1991. 

It was a "Mother Nature at its Finest" weekend for me and my best friends together with our loved ones. The electricity powered by a generator is available only from 6PM until 10PM, there is no cellphone signal and internet connection on the island. Our activities (other than eating and drinking) included camping, exploring the area, taking photographs, lighting a bonfire, toasting marshmallows, swimming and trekking the hills.

No Signal = No Emails Ha!


Welcome to Nagsasa Cove

























at the camp site


























Bonfire

When we went trekking up the hill the next morning, the view literally took my breath away.

My friend Rhea going uphill
The view is spectacular from up here

Mike: This is the life!!!
It is nice and refreshing though to go back to the basics once in a while. 

Our special thanks goes out to Gone Wild Campers for organizing this relaxing and rejuvenating trip to paradise. Oh and the food was awesome!

GWC is a group who provides unique tours and facilitates camping trips to destinations not commonly visited by many. Besides their services and the food they prepare, what I like best about them is their commitment to protect and preserve the environment.

Gone Wild Campers Team
Email: gonewildcampers@yahoo.com
Mobile: +63 917 863 1802 / +63 928 279 8826

Till next time! =)

Friday, March 8, 2013

Nine Years

Mike and I have been married for more than two years now but today marks our "Ninth Year" together as a couple.

I made a collage with photos from some of our travels:

It's been a happy nine year together and still counting...

We're off to the beach tomorrow to relax, unwind and celebrate.

Happy Weekend! <3 <3 <3











Thursday, March 7, 2013

Happy Birthday Dad!

If my dad was still alive, he would be 76 years old today.


Happy Birthday Daddy! Your memory is enshrined in our hearts forever! I miss you!

{Image from Poster-street}
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