In the kitchen: Why cook at home?

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Healthy but pricey hot pot and shrewd cabbage in Saboten, Glorietta
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Pancakes + tocino breakfast buffet at Mt. Makiling Recreation Center

I love home cooked meals over food served in restaurants because I know the ingredients are fresh and I have full control in terms of serving size. The downside is that we tend to stick to the usual menu. I really struggle in creating a meal plan that is why I usually give this task to our househelp. I also bring food in my workplace in order to skip the stress of thinking about what to eat.

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eggs + veggies
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more ingredients

I have nothing against eating a dish a couple of times in a week (but prepared individually of course). It’s just that after making the decision of trying to eat clean made me realize that I have not tried adding a couple of fresh ingredients in our cooking list. This includes the use of herbs, powders, other vegetables like red cabbage, sesame leaves and rocket, root crops such as lotus and taro, brown, black and red rice and a lot more. Also, I wanted to add variety in our meals partly because my other sister is a bit choosy. Having to try new recipes together can create a positive environment for her to learn eating new stuff.

This decision prodded me to be more active in buying the ingredients in the wet market again. I used to go with our househelp but because I don’t want to over commit my Saturday mornings so I decided to forego wet market visits. After noticing that the food served is being mechanical, I stepped in hoping to change this habit for the better.

I must say that I am always a fresh market enthusiast not just for the sake of making sure that what we are eating is of good quality but also because it gives me a happy feeling. Looking at those live crabs, clams, fresh green leaves make me feel more alive. I just feel so good! I hope you can try going to the wet market as well.

I will be sharing the different wet markets I’ve gone to in the succeeding posts.

Stay healthy and inspired,

Jannel

 

 

 

Monday Musings:Being in the Rain

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Hi there! Have you ever danced in the rain? Or even played in the rain? I wasn’t able to and I dare not. I don’t know how it feels because my mom won’t allow us. She said we will catch colds and get sick. I only know it based on movies like when Gabriella and Troy sang “Can I have this dance?” in High School Musical 3. My closest experience was when I traveled with my friends in Sorsogon during the rainy season. Can you spot the rain drops?

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me floating in the island of Sorsogon, Philippines

I also love to capture moments before the rain starts pouring. It has a drama effect that cannot be obtained when we take photographs of a normal rainy day scene. The picture below was taken when my relatives toured us in the newly built Shangri-la at the Fort. I’m not sure why the leaves have wilted.

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When it was about to rain in Bonifacio Global City (BGC), Philippines

I was fancying the table and the chair when the rain was about to pour. I took this picture in haste because I’m afraid I’ll get wet. The calmness of the table and the green grass bring offset the dark background of the clouds above. I can even split the photos in half and you won’t notice that they are one of the same.

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While at a farm in Hokkaido running in haste

The same scenario happened when I went to Melbourne with my family. It was a very sad picture. It is as if I ran from the castle where the evil witch is.

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Walking briskly to a covered area in Melbourne, Australia

Despite the sadness the dark clouds bring, I believe that it is beautiful.

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Touring Nikka Whiskey Factory in Hokkaido

I hope we can all dance in the rain literally and figuratively–with or without an umbrella alongside. I love this picture of us inside the factory compound of Nikka Whiskey. We were able to bring green umbrellas inside–japanese style. I took this groupie using the mirror for cars. Can you spot me?

This post is the last of the rainy day series. I hope you enjoyed browsing the photos! For those who weren’t able to view my previous posts I shared about the rainy days in dela rosa here, about my fascination in rain drops here and extreme rains here.

Stay inspired,

Jannel

Monday musings: Sunshine after the rain

Hi there! It is still rainy in the Philippines. I must say that as the years go by I am less affected by the weather. It is such a sad state to see some people roaming around the streets with wet feet. More so, some people find shelter in side streets and does not have enough covering.

Our country is prone to experience typhoons maybe because of where we are geographically. Last year, Typhoon Nina directly hit the Bicol region, my home town. We thought it was just like an ordinary typhoon so we did not prepare that much. Normally, my parents and other relatives would install several used tarpaulins to prevent the wind and rain from entering our house and establishment. This time we did not because we were all busy in the business and we did not check the online news. Around 8 pm of Christmas day, we just had family dinner and are preparing to have karaoke when the electricity was cut off. The wind was heavy and there were thunderstorms. We did not mind. We thought it will just pass. We even played some games to substitute the karaoke.

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After a while, the water was gushing in the balcony. The rain was already entering a portion of our living room. I panicked! In my mind I regretted that we did not listen to my other relatives’ advice to prepare. We kept ourselves busy on that night trying to prevent the water from coming in. For some, the duty is to collect water that already went in.

It was a crazy night and a very different Christmas experience. Despite the bad situation, I felt blessed to be with my family during this time of distress. I also felt God’s presence who gave us the strength while cleaning the house. I was still able to sent a message to friends from Manila asking for their prayers. After a while, the mobile signal was already gone.

We slept past one in the morning of the following day. I was exhausted after collecting the water. Thankfully, the typhoon already passed by our house. We did not mind that there was no electricity yet nor mobile signal. It was as if we were stuck in an island and the most important thing is that we were all safe.

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Upon waking up, the road was still flooded. We had an extra day off from work. It was time for me to reflect. I also got the chance to take pictures after the typhoon. Despite the calamity, God’s creation is still wonderful.

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The gloomy weather was reflected on the glass and table.

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broken lamp post typhoon

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We spent the rest of the day at home. My siblings and dad, both of whom are fond of watching, had an instant media fast. Meanwhile, I got to enjoy the usual things that I do since I am not dependent on the internet nor television.

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Swiss miss and the radio that my aunt was listening to
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sulking in the bed!
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Re-reading this old book
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Documenting memories
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More reading materials! Science 101 experiments.
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Stamps- Christmas themed

In the end, despite the bad situation, I enjoyed that day.

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After two days, we were already able to go outside. No more flood! Yay!

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This dog is ready for a walk.

Stay inspired,

Jannel

 

Tips on Thursdays: How to stay fit

Recently, I realized that I am starting to have a bulging tummy. It disturbs me. After three months of having only an average of 30-minute exercise on a weekly basis and almost 4-5 hours of sleep daily the results are showing. My appetite is also starting to increase recently. I don’t know why but is this related to getting old? Or is it because I check food blogs to inculcate new recipes at home. Here are some tips that I have also read from several blogs and articles:

Tip #1: Eat Right. Eat more fresh and natural food like whole grains, vegetables, fruits, fish and meat. Lessen food that are high in sugar and salt. Recently, I have been trying to apply this but there are so many temptations like the Korean cookie that I was holding in my previous post. Good thing I can’t read the label because everything is in Korean. Anyhow, I’ll be posting these recipes for you.

Tip #2: Devote time for exercise. Look for a routine that will work for you and follow through. I hated exercising before because usually ball games were emphasized in elementary and high school. I suck in sports especially those that have something to do with balls. If you’re still having a hard time because you’re not a naturally disciplined person, tag your friends along!

Tip #3: Sleep. As experts say, have 6-8 hours of sleep. To be honest, I’m not good at these. Of these three, I struggle with this a lot. I should go to bed by 9:30 or 10 pm otherwise, my wake up time will still be 6:00-6:30 am. I’m always a morning person and I love it!

1422This monument is doing the hundreds (a warm up in Pilates)

1550While I’m doing downdog. Not yet perfect but going to get there!

Always remember that no matter how many times we fail in keeping these habits, we can still get up. What matters most is the choice that we make.

Stay posi,

Jannel

Words on Wednesdays: Spice up your life

Sometimes we fall into the trap of doing the same things. We eat the same food, walk in the same route, have the same work routine, talk to the same people, and watch the same shows. When I tend to do routine work, I feel like I am not progressing. I know somewhere I have to tweak it a bit.

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Last week I challenged myself to alter some of the items in my routine list:

  • Instead of eating a spoon of honey I decided to try the orange flavored vitamin C drink
  • Instead of walking in the overpass, I walked on the street
  • Instead of eating in the cafeteria, I went to get some salad somewhere for dinner
  • Instead of checking my favorite blogs, I watched Mark Zuckerberg’s commencement speech in Harvard

Concurrently, in the office it was our first Friday to wear jeans so yay for a small organizational change.

Stay inspired,

Jannel

Thoughts on Tuesdays: Reflections on Toruk

A couple of weeks back, I got the chance to see Toruk:The First Flight held in Mall of Asia together with my relatives. It was one of those Cirque de Soleil tours where actors do different stunts as the story goes. I expected it to be more lively but it turned out to be more dramatic.

The story was about the village of Pandora and the two brothers who had a long journey to get articles from the sub-villages. These articles would then be used to save Pandora from the foreseen disaster.

As always, I try to get life lessons from anything. Here are my realizations while watching the show:

  • Creativity comes in different forms. In order to make the show, there were orators, dancers, singers, prop makers, make up artists and directors. Each one has been given a different talent essential to make the show outstanding.

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Balancing Act. The beam looks sturdy!

  • Technology helped a lot in the props making. Instead of using three dimensional props to recreate a scene taken from the sea, the directors used audio visual projectors instead.

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  • The dancers took time to train really well. It takes a certain amount of time to master the moves especially for the people who did aerial stunts. I applaud them! I was inspired to practice yoga and pilates to gain more flexibility.

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Here are the other photos that I took during the show:

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Stay inspired,

Jannel

Monday Musings: Raindrops

Last week the rain was on and off. I just wanted to stay at home because I feel so lazy but there’s work and there’s a shared responsibility on the tasks that needed to be done in the office. I had to book an uber to and from Rockwell Center since it is a bit far from my place.

On the way home, I was rushing because I can see the dark clouds forming. Good thing I was able to reach a covered area before the rain started to pour really hard. While stuck in heavy traffic, I was reading Real Artists Don’t Starve by Jeff Goins on my phone. It was given to me by my best friend because she knows I love business and self help books. One thing that I miss out while walking is the stillness commute life gives. I get to reflect on the things that are going on and just look at the surroundings outside. I also ask the driver random questions (trying to learn everything that I can given that short span of time. Yes we can learn from anyone).

Towards the end of the trip, I noticed the lamp and the rain drops on the side window of the car. It was beautiful so I took a photograph.

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When I went home, I realized that I have a lot of rain drop photographs taken while stuck in traffic. I jokingly told my dad that I could not drive because I tend to stare at things I notice. I will really feel bad if I miss them!

 

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The photo above was taken along a street in Manila. It is a wet market lane. The drops and the strip of onions blended well together.

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On the way to Binondo with dad. I used my Nikon coolpix camera here so the drops were not that evident.

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Galaxy feels.

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side sweeping rain.

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Student waiting for the bus along the road somewhere in Taiwan. I know there’s no rain drops but it adds to the drama.

Stay inspired,

Jannel