In the kitchen: DIY breakfast in 10 minutes

As you probably know in my previous posts, Teaz cooks for us most of the time. When there are days that she’s out, my sisters and I usually purchase bread and do our favorite peanut butter sandwich.

This time we wanted to do something different and be creative. We also like it to be prepared quickly since we have to leave home before 8 am for our Sunday worship.

I cooked sunny side ups for the three of us. This time I got them right except for my egg!

I also heated a can of tuna and took out the cream cheese from the fridge.

I usually drink hot water in the mornings but I noticed the cacao balls sitting on the shelf. I took one and put in hot water.

What do you usually prepare for breakfast? Have you tried this combination?

Jannel

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Field trip: Dangwa Flower district

I often fancied at the flower arrangement in our church. As I sat on the pew, I would normally draw while listening to the sermon.

After a while, I asked our administrator if I can pick some flowers after the service ends. She gladly asked Auntie Vangie.

Later on, Dara and I asked her if we can help in arranging the flowers. She gladly agreed!

After a couple of lessons, we went to Dangwa to buy flowers for our first arrangement. Sir Mark accompanied us since it will be our first time to buy.

I hope this can guide you in the fast approaching heart’s day!

We parked in front of this. There are lots of arranged flowers here but they are more expensive.

But you can also buy a couple of flowers and buy the wrapper separately.

We asked the salesman to arrange the flowers for us. His technique is to arrange the flowers like this:

(Photo taken from the internet)

Flowers in X then cut the excess stems and wrap with tape.

Here are some other pictures that I took during our visit.

Roses in different colors. According to Sir Mark they are mostly from China. These can be found on the other side of the street. We walked across via a small pedestrian crossing to reach this side.

All sorts of leaves in different sizes! They are all looking fresh!

Auntie Vangie’s suki.

More ornamental leaves for arrangements.

More succulents!

My shoes match the overall theme of this photo! Everything’s in autumn!

Women buying flowers. I love her hat!

This looks like a fresh lumpia on the street.

Sir Mark drew a draft of the arrangement that we did before we start looking for flowers and leaves. I learned that we should:

– have a general idea of what the arrangement should look like

– have a certain budget for the arrangement

We set P500 for this particular one but we ended up spending only P240!

– have good haggling skills

As always, I bring my notebook and pen with me!

(Photo by Achi Kim)

Until my next adventure,

Jannel

In the Kitchen: Snacks that I’m currently lovin’

Hi! It has been a while since I shared the snacks that I have eaten. I don’t know why but I find it amusing to take photos of the food I eat. Is it something that you often do too?

Taiwan mooncake, red bean flavored.

Sesame balls or what they call butchi in filipino

Asado pao

Oreo dipped in warm milk

Turon or fried banana wrapped in lumpia

Taro chips

Suddenly my nuts+ dried fruits snack plan is crushed…but then again we need to add variety to what we eat.

Jannel

Takeaways: Reflections on the movie Bad Genius

There is always a huge discrepancy between the ideal and the real world. Often times we are taught of the proper behaviors in a society and ethics in school but to my distress they are seldom applied in the workplace. The gray areas are often times the pitfalls of our character, reputation and faith. Sometimes we are even trapped by our selfishness which originally came out of our desire to help.

Temptations show us the realities of our hearts. In the movie Bad Genius, the problem aroused when Lynn accepted her friends’ money as payment for the right answers. I believe that she had good intentions to help but the opportunities given to her led to shame and deceit. Gratefully, in the end, she was able to choose what is better.

While watching the movie, I realized that our desire to help can cause us to stumble if we don’t watch and pray. When we take the matters into our own hands, we will fall. When our desire to do good is overpowered by our own selfishness, we will give in to temptations. These temptations in turn will lead us to a series of lies. Until we listen to God’s spirit convicting us of our shortcomings, we will be trapped. There won’t be peace in our hearts and our thoughts will always be preoccupied with the things that we did wrong.

Teach by example. When Lynn was tempted to accept payment in exchange for her brilliance, I believe it wasn’t because they were financially lacking. It was because she learned from the example of the teachers in her new school that accepting payment is valid. She learned from her father that the principal was collecting “tea money” for the teachers’ consumption. She then reasoned that accepting payment in exchange for helping her classmates pass the subject is then acceptable. I am reminded that teaching is a noble profession. Teachers must devote their lives to teach their students not just the concepts but by setting as examples to emulate. Outstanding character is much needed in order for students to be morally upright. In the same way, parents must teach their children the values to live by. I commend Lynn’s dad for having integrity and accepting the cancellation of Lynn’s scholarship after the principal discovered the cheating that had happened. He stood for what he believed is right despite the consequences. He was brave enough to face his daughter’s faults. I believe that it is also because of the values of Lynn’s dad that she ultimately chose to do what is right. Despite his high hopes for her, he doesn’t want her to do it the wrong way.

Love despite of imperfections. The contrast of the love and acceptance of Lynn’s dad and the pressure given by the parents of Lynn’s friends is evident in the movie. Despite the wealth of her friends, they were having trouble in school. They want to please their parents so badly that they resulted to cheating. Their need for validation is partly due to the gifts that their parents promised if they pass the subjects. I realized that pushing kids to excel should be coupled with support and encouragement. Parents should not leave them on their own lest they think they need to be what they are not. Had there been openness between parents and children about their struggles in school, they might not have resulted to violate academic integrity. I believe that parents are called to love despite their children’s imperfections. It is a hard call but God will be the one to enable the love and acceptance. As children, we are also called to love back. For Lynn, it meant listening to her dad’s advice and wisdom. She might have avoided all the trouble if she obeyed him during his first warning when the principal found out that she allowed her classmates to cheat. Authorities are given by God for our own good so we ought to follow them.

Flee from temptations. As mentioned earlier, Lynn was faced with a series of temptations throughout her high school days. Seeing her friends live their lives luxuriously may have caused her to pity her social status. According to Jesus, money is the root of all kinds of evil. This fact is evident in the movie as well. When Lynn was offered a hefty sum of money in exchange for her “services”, her desire to feel accepted and be at par with her friends have strengthened her decision to accept. Fleeing from temptation might have meant that Lynn should look for new friends during her free time or school breaks or transfer to a different section. In real life I believe that this is hard to do. In order to avoid these unnecessary troubles, it is important to ask God to lead us to the right set of friends. I believe that he will honor it because it is His will for us to be in a group of God loving people.

Use our gifts wisely. Lynn was gifted academically. She was able to ace the tests without sweat! God gave her the ability to do so! When she willingly taught her friend, she exercised this gift well. I realized that when we look outward—that is when we prioritize others’ needs, we are more likely to use our gifts wisely. But when we seek our own satisfaction first, our ability to bless others will often decrease. As followers of Christ, we ought to use our abilities for God’s glory. In this light, we need to use it in the right context and in the right manner.

Value clear conscience. Honesty has a high price. This truth is evident in the movie. Lynn and her friends carried a heavy burden for several years. The small whispers to tell the truth and act in the right manner was silenced by their heart’s desire to want more things. For Lynn it meant more money, for her friends it meant higher grades and material stuff as rewards from their parents. We cannot value clear conscience if we do not put God at the center of our lives. When we ask the Holy Spirit to direct our paths, God will enable us to hear His small but definite whispers amidst the loud distractions in this world.

Change for the better. In the last part of the movie, Lynn was suddenly convinced that what she did was wrong. When she came back from Australia after the exam, she confessed the truth to her dad. After a while, Bank, another gifted classmate who went with her to Australia, asked her to visit his newly renovated laundry shop. He used the money he got to improve his parents’ business and made an offer to Lynn to take SAT and do the same thing. Lynn graciously declined Bank’s offer and decided to confess what they did to the authorities. In the earlier part of the movie, Bank was the honest guy. He was the one who reported the cheating that had happened during the class. It was because of him that Lynn’s business got discovered but in the end, he was not able to stand true to his beliefs. Revenge and love for money had taken over him. Merely wanting to do what is right will not sustain us. When we put our faith and trust in God that He will enable us to be changed, that’s when real growth takes place and character changed.

In the end, what good is it to gain the world but forfeit your soul? (Matthew 16:26) I realized that despite the success of the business to which brought Lynn and her friends “freedom”, there was guilt, a heavy burden that they ought to bear for the rest of their lives. If not for Lynn’s courage to tell the truth, their future will be without peace. And the very thing that they thought would give them joy will make them regret for the rest of their lives. This movie gave me much hope that integrity will still win in the end.

In the kitchen: cheeseplater + movies

Last year I invited my friends over for a movie date. We watched Do you Believe? And had a series of conversation.

As the day approaches, I was torn whether I would simply buy pizza and popcorn for our guests, ask Teaz to cook pasta or prepare something that I would personally eat.

I went for the third option because I know I cannot force myself to eat pizza and pasta for snacks.

I browsed pinterest for movie and snack ideas and came across a series of pictures.

1. The typical popcorn with chocolates

2. Nachos and cheese

3. Cheese platter

I wanted to try something different so I opted for the third choice. I improvised everything from the cheese to the crackers.

Since I’m not very fond of cheese, I thought Arla cream cheese would be a pretty good choice. I also bought soda crackers that I never tasted before.

I also learned that we can use honey and other jams but I wanted something that isn’t sweet since we already have apple juice. I bought pesto from Gourmet farms instead to match with the crostini and crackers.

I also bought dates and rambutan.

Even though I bought pop corns, we were not able to consume them.

I added almonds and raisins too! Both items were already in our pantry.

What’s your typical movie snacks?

Jannel

Field trip: Berde in Ayala Triangle

Occasionally, restaurants located in Ayala Triangle are replaced by new ones. Rochelle and I got intrigued by Berde, a newly opened healthy fast food restaurant last year.

It looks like Salad Stop but it has a filipino twist.

Here are some photos that I took during our visit.

High chairs facing the wall. The space is small so in both ends, there are piled chairs to accommodate more customers who wish to eat the food inside.

There are also two doors (one for entrance and exit) to facilitate a more efficient system.

There’s Rochelle and a portion of her plate.

I ordered this one. It’s called Chicken Inasal. I personally love the raw pechay because we don’t normally eat it that way. It doesn’t taste bitter at all!

I hope I can try cooking this type of meals.

Jannel

Musings: types + graphics

A couple of months ago I shared that I went to Greenhills Shopping Center to get my phone fixed. Although I have visited the place several times ago, I never really got the chance to explore on leisure.

Good thing Nikki was with me. We always end up doing the most adventurous things together because we like to look around, take photos and videos!

Here are some cool font designs and graphics that I found.

I never really know this brand but its type really sticks out! I also love the overall design. It gives a quirky and fun twist.

This flashing sign is eye catchy. It reminds me of diners and restaurant signs.

This canvas bag’s design is stitched! I thought it was paint but when I looked closely, I saw a bunch of thread weaved together. My aunt would totally love this!

I love how the buns are drawn. They are so cute! The font also matches the overall design.

We ate ate Le Ching because Nikki wanted to try something we don’t typically see in Ayala Malls. Apparently there’s also a Le Ching Too. Was it misspelled or did they actually named it as “too”? Either way, it is catchy. There were more people eating in this restaurant than the branch where we dined.

Their board is also cute! I like the idea of it since most restaurants would not normally post what’s unavailable so we end up choosing them and get disappointed.

Twinning shoes!

Here’s to more adventures!

Jannel