almost new year :)

This will be my last blog for this year, 2010.

Most Filipinos have this belief that whatever you do in the eve of the new year would likely be your life for the rest of that particular year.

I’m in front of the laptop, and it would seem that most of the coming days my life would be in front of this machine. Or at least my life will be “on-line”. Lol. But it would be my preparation for making things happen.

Anyway, I just want to join th bandwagon of bloggers who posts before new year. Lol.

2011, see you soon!

Happy New Year everyone!

Let’s live life simply 🙂

Advertisements

Luminarie: Kobe City’s Light Festival

Even though we knew that it was the last day of the Luminarie yesterday, we decided to battle through throngs of crowd just to see the magnificent lights at night. If Japanese were not so orderly, I bet that amount of crowd can easily turn into a mob. Or worst yet, a big stampede might happen. Good thing, public order was ensure. In my perception, sometimes Japanese are too orderly. Lol!

Luminarie is an annual event to commemorate the Great Hanshin Earthquake. The first lighting event happened 15 years ago, when the Italian Government donated the lights to Kobe City. Valerio Festi, an Italian art director together with Hirokazu Imaoka produced the installation. It was said that all bulbs were hand-painted. Sugoi!

This is me with my super happy face. I really enjoyed viewing the lights. I wished I stayed longer though. But it was time well spent. I enjoyed it with new and old friends. We camwhored a bit. I remember just looking at other people’s photos of this event, now I have my own. Hihihi.

My Japanese Food Attempts!

Living in a household were one usually cooks for you, I never really learn how to cook except for instant noodles.

At present, I’m living with myself overseas. Food is easy to come by but the thing is, it’s too expensive. Takai desu! Unless, I am in a splurging-mood, I wouldn’t dare eat outside. So on my first day, I bought my self a non-stick frying pan and all-around pot.

Whenever I cook here, well it is edible (thank god!), but most of it are invented. I don’t follow a particular recipe (because really I don’t know how). I will buy ingredients that I eat, usually ingredients that can also be found in my country. Whisk the pan with oil, saute garlic or onions, put meat add Kikkoman. Sometimes I add parsley or sugar, depends on my mood. Viola, food! Sometimes, I depend on the ever reliable fried food, chicken, pork, fish, shrimp, what have you. When I am not too lazy, I cook food with tomato sauce, vegetables, sometimes I make breaded stuff (just to make frying more complicated). I never really learn to perfect my rice. But I live with it.

Obviously, I don’t really know how to cook.

My first month here is a Kikkoman-filled diet.

Realizing how bad I am in cooking. I decided to learn some basic Japanese food. Haha! The irony! I think Japanese food is one of the most disciplined food in terms of preparations and cooking. Dame desu! But what the hell! So I did try, and the results? Well, not bad!  I didn’t die of food poisoning, that’s one, and it was quite oishi for my taste.

So here are some pictures of what I tried so far.

This is my first okonomiyaki attempt. Okonomiyaki is what they call as Japanese pizza. But rather than having toppings, it actually looks more like an omelette or a pancake because you have to mix your choice of ingredients with flour and egg.

The difficult part in cooking okonomiyaki, besides the tedious preparation, is flipping the thing! If you noticed in the photograph, I miscalculated and the edge of the pie, well, it didn’t flipped right. Oh well! But it tasted so great. Or was it because of the sauce? But anyway, I tried it again and this time, smaller proportions, and the results were better.

My second attempt to cooking Japanese food, was just today. I cooked gyoza. But this one is not the traditional Japanese gyoza. I would say this is more Filipino style because the meat outweighed the vegetables. Hihihi. The picture would suggest that it is oily, well it is. ( I think I have to buy a strainer) You have to cooked the dumpling with broth and 5 tablespoon of oil. Wait until the broth evaporated and fry the dumpling until it’s a bit golden. With 5 tablespoon of oil, it would definitely be oily. But it tasted so much what my aunt usually make. I love it! Too bad there’s no calamansi here to make the dip perfect. I have to make do with Kikkoman (yet again!) and garlic lemon powder.

So there, I would say that being here for almost 3 months, I learn some culture. Well, more like, Japanese cooking. I would still like to learn how to make maki and sushi. But I have to wait until I perfect cooking my rice. You see, I don’t use rice cooker, I am doing the traditional way so it is a bit more difficult. Haha. I am defending my lack of skills here. But one day, you will just see in this blog, that I did. Yey!

 

For recipe on the following, please follow the links below (more professional):

http://okonomiyakiworld.com/

http://www.japan-guide.com/r/e107.html

My life with you as I imagined it

I never really share any of my dreams to anyone. My fantasies always remain in my head, locked during the day and unwrapped during the night. But this particular dream, I want to share with you because it is something I really want to happen. And it will only come true with you by my side, pursuing the tremendous ambition of our future together.

Let me begin by describing to you our home.

I dream living in a small house that is just about right for our little family. I imagined further living up the hill with views of sunset and paradise. I imagined it to be the same place where you took that photo of your village, with its magnificent sight. I want a home where I can sit forever staring at the great expanse of life while having long conversation with you.

I want us to dream together as dreamers would under the sky.

I also imagined our house to have a small patch of garden. I want us to grow vegetables and maybe some fruits too. Funny, because growing up I never really have my own garden. I never really know how to make things grow, but somehow I can tell, you would teach me how. But please be very patient with me, I may not have a green thumb.

One reason why I want a garden where we can pick our own food is because I want our children to eat healthy food. I don’t want them to be like me (their mother) who only started eating vegetables when I was in high school. I don’t want them to be choosy with food. I want them to learn to appreciate blessings from our soil. I am not asking them to be vegetarians (unless they choose to be one), but I want them to taste life’s blessings.

I also want a space where our children can freely run as wild as children should. I want a space for them to learn about Mother Earth first hand. I want them to discover how wonderful and beautiful our natural environment is, and early on, I want them to learn to be Earth’s stewards. I want to imbibe with them what we are as adults are struggling everyday, fighting for Earth’s protection.

This is my dream house. But basically, I do not want a house. I want a home where love grows everyday.

Now let me describe to you our children and how I imagined us to be as parents.

I imagined having two kids. They can be more, if we plan to make our family bigger. But now let me describe to you our first two children.

The eldest will be a baby girl. She will have your hair because I love your curly hair. I want to look at her and see you in her. I want her to move with grace but with confidence. I want her to be strong but still feminine. Our second child, my baby boy (you will always be my big baby) will be strong-willed with convictions. He will always have a protective stance over her elder sister. He will have your height and my smile. But I want him to have your kindness; he can cry and still be a man.

I want our children to be best friends. They can fight too, it is only normal for siblings to have misunderstandings. But I want them to learn from each other. They will also be each other’s teacher, as we promise ourselves to be with one another.

We should teach them to ask questions. We will teach them to be curious. It is only in curiosity that one can really learn. As parents, we should be very patient. We should answer each question with diligence. Never brainwash them about fairytale, but made them idealists who know the truths and realities of life. But we should remind them never be afraid to have dreams either. We are dreamers too, but we always keep one foot down as to remind us the challenge of achieving our objectives. We shall teach them the same thing.

I want our children to be independent. I want them to know what they want and have the guts to pursue them. Don’t worry. We will silently guide them through. But we want them to learn from their own mistakes, and know the consequences of their actions. We will teach them discipline, but we will never use violence in doing so. Physical punishments can never achieve anything. We will reprimand them, gave them our reasons for saying/doing it so, and make them understand.

But as parents, we should also admit when we are wrong. Never be too arrogant to admit our own mistakes. We should be the living examples. Also, we should also learn from our children. Not only them learning from us but us learning from them. We should always be curious too. Never stop learning and re-learning. They say that children always say the most amazing things, and ask the most difficult questions. We should see the world in their eyes sometimes.

It is difficult raising children, but I think it is more difficult raising our selves to be good parents.

Lastly, let me share with you how I imagined our family will be.

Well, actually it’s quite simple. I imagined our family to be full of love, a home where happiness blossoms and springs. It is a family that is not afraid to show their love towards each other. I want our family to have complete trust with one another. Never judging and always understanding.

I want our family to go with your motto: “when the going gets tough, the tough gets going”. We should always work hand in hand, no matter what struggles the world will give us. Knowing that we have each other, I think we will more than just survive. We will definitely manage it.

So there, that’s how I imagined my life with you. It is not clear yet, as this is just one side of the story. I want to hear what you have to say. I know you already envisioned our future together the same way I did. We are both thinkers and dreamers to begin with. But please do share it with me, and let’s make it both a reality.