Posted in Family matters, Holidays, Married Life, Our little man, Parenting style

Captured moments + Photobooks = Lifetime Memories

As a couple hubby and I are huge fans of taking pictures of little A. I know sometimes little A got distracted or irritated with a camera stuck on his face.That being said,we want to ensure that we capture as many of his everyday moments that we can because we know that those moments go by fast.It’s our own little way of valuing the precious,spontaneous and candid moments of our lives.

A simple idea that won’t cost a fortune but will bring a million laughs and memories?

 When it comes to photo sharing social network could be hit for others but for us we still prefer looking back the old days over a cup of cofffee while browsing our photobook.

And the perks of having a talented and creative sibling around is I can easily ask favor to create a photobook for us.

Despite her busy schedule she still managed to produce a masterpiece/s. She did the 1st birthday photobook of little A and just recently we received the 2nd photobook with pictures of little A’s mickey mouse 2nd birthday party with his journey to two’s adventures.

Just a quick proud ‘”Ate”moment I am so happy with her accomplishments.Started as a hobby now they’ve started a business and proud owner of  Raven Digital Works. Engineers by day and a cool artists every minute. They are offering services like AVP, photoshoot, photo lay out, and their famous Photoholics Photobooth. A unique, fun-oriented portable photo boothwhich caters any occassions. An hours of entertainment with lots of amazing party props and costumes to add more adventures and craze in taking photos.

Anyhoot, A quick tip from all parents out there – If you want to turn your favorite digital photos into treasured photo books starts to snap a shots of your kiddos and create memories that last a lifetime.

* For latest updates and promotion about  Raven Digital Works, you may send message to their facebook acount (Raven Digital Works)

Have a fab weekend everyone!!

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Posted in Our little man, Parenting style, Saving tips

For the love of reading – The Booksale treasure hunt

Thank you tita keke for adding books to our library

I always feel elated everytime we are receiving books as a gift. More than toys and clothes books can be more exciting for us. As I said little A loves reading and browsing books. Though books here in Dubai  are quite expensive we are buying atleast one book every payday to add to our library.

Then I read from n@w group that Booksale is really affordable. They are selling pre-owned but still intact,useful and a way much cheaper than the other bookstore. After learning about this great tip I asked my sister to pay visit to their nearest branch.

She became a fan and never leaves without book on her hand.

Thank you Tita Maribelle for bringing in all of his books..You’re an angel!

True to their  mission Booksale is a treasure trove of the book gems you’ve been searching for. Since I also mentioned to her that the little boy likes Dr. Suess books, she got all of these.Now reading can be more affordable.#It’s more FUN in the Philippines

 I still have wishlist and if we will go home maybe early next year then I will surely hit their shop and hoard more books.

Posted in Counting skills, Learning through play, Our little man, Parenting style

Learning through play – Creative Play

For a toddler who is always on the move long road trips can be tough. Especially when they finally become conscious that they’ve been trapped on their car seat for a long hours.

One of our stress buster is refocus his energy by playing “Create a story”.Each of us takes a turn narrating any stories that we may think. This game is such a big hit to little A.

Last weekend after eating breakfast I had the chance to finally arranged all of my compiled recipes I was planning to write it in my notebook.

Of course knowing how active little A he then asked me if we could play our “create a story”. This time instead of narrating he wants to put it into illustrations. He wants me to draw his story. Ok, this is a sign that he’s bored and he wants something to do. So I grabbed his small pad and pen and I set aside what I planned to do. He then started to narrate his story..

Little A – One day there’s  a little boy.

Mommy – What’s the name of the boy

Little A – He said his name “Little A”

Mommy – What is he doing..

Little A – He’s holding a balloon. So many balloons..

(So I complied) I drew 4 balloons and asked him to count. I also asked him the shape of the balloons. I even hold his hand so I can guide him to draw as well.

He then asked me if we can draw mommy and daddy.

After seeing the illustration he said “no mommy”. .  I asked him why? Mommy and Daddy will also hold balloon.

A simple activity using his imagination.

 A simple aid to build his vocabulary and communication skills.

I’m amazed how much faster the time passed by we were so engaged! Before I knew it I need to prepare again for lunch time.

he drew this he said this is little A and daddy..cute!!

 

This is me and Little A (sorry but drawing is not my cup of tea)

Posted in Cook's Nook, For the love of baking, Our little man

Oven Baked Herbs Seasoned Fries

Have you ever experience that you want to nibble a food but you don’t know exactly what you really like to eat.

Well apparently for some reason I don’t want eat my usual dinner but I know I am craving for something. Then I opened the fridge those fries and chicken popcorn are begging to me. It is without the doubt that fries are considered the most comfort foods.But I’m tired of the usual plain fries that is more often unexciting.

Here’s another way to eat your plain,dull and boring fries.

Spice up them with special recipe made of olive oil,salt and herbs made more delectable with garlic powder.

This fries will simply ROCK your world. Funny how one would still call them “fries” when really they are not “fried” in anything. Can we just call them healthy french fries,shall we??

Oven Baked Herbs Seasoned Fries

Ingredients:

  • Store bought fries (you may 3 large potatoes)
  • 1 1/2 TBSP of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 tsp Dried Basil
  • 1/4 tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1/4 tsp of Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 tsp of salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Wash and cut potatoes into 1/8ths. (if you’re using fresh potatoes)
  3. Place on a cookie sheet that has been lined with foil (I used Reynolds Release foil so that they will not stick, but you could also either use non-stick cooking spray or lightly grease the top of the foil with extra virgin olive oil).
  4. Mix all of the spices in a small bowl.
  5. Place all of the potatoes into a large freezer bag, add olive oil and the spice mixture to the bag.
  6. Seal the bag and shake until the potatoes are evenly coated.
  7. Once thoroughly coated dump onto the prepared cookie sheet and spread in a single layer.
  8. Bake 30-45 minutes or until tender and lightly golden brown. (Baking times will vary depending on the amount of fries that you make and the size that you cut them). For the ones shown in the picture they were baked at 425 for 45 minutes.

Remember I also have chicken popcorn, I just drizzle them with olive oil and add dried oregano and bake them along with the fries.

Have I told you that even little A RAVED over them and I mean RAVED that he’s asking for more..

Happy eating!!

Posted in Cooking experiment, For the love of baking

Auntie Anne’s Cinnamon and Sugar Pretzels

Who says you have to be an excellent baker to create desserts?

Sweeten your day with a cute little mouth-watering pretzels that your hubby and your kids will surely praise you for such a wonderfully delectable dessert!

Okay don’t think that I’m intentionally trying to kick you from your healthy living habits . But I guess we will all agree that you can never say ‘NO”with that amazing aroma of fresh pretzels baking in the oven.They’re just SO GOOD. So buttery and warm. So chewy and soft. Sweet,savoury and sinfully delicious. I’m lost of adjectives how can I describe the taste of Auntie Anne’s pretzels!

If STRICT DIET means NO SWEETS then you better stop reading this post and just stick to fruits and vegetables snack.

 But let me tell you- this is the real deal! You’ll thank me for this small burst of warmth in your home..

And because you can never have enough chocolate, feel free to add some extra chips..I swear these pretzels will be your signature entrée..

Here’s how you do it…

Ingredients

pretzel dough

1 1/2 cups warm water (110-115F)

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1 packet active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)

4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter (melted)

topping

1 tablespoon of cinammon powder

1/2 cup sugar

poaching liquid

10 cups water

2/3 cup baking soda

Directions

In a large bowl, add 2 tablespoons sugar, 2 teaspoons of salt, and yeast to 1 1/2 cups of warm water. Let the bowl stand about 5 minutes to allow the yeast to activate. It should bubble.

Add the flour and melted butter and mix until completely combined.

drop the dough on a smooth surface and knead for 7-10 minutes (trust me, it’s not hard).

Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and let rise for an hour. The dough should roughly double in size.

After it the dough has risen, preheat the over to 450F and start boiling the 10 cups of water in a large stock pot. Once you have a rolling boil, add the 2/3 cup baking soda. Prepare a baking sheet with a very lightly oiled parchment paper.

Divide the dough into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into 16 inch ropes. The dough is very elastic, so it will tend to shrink a few inches as soon as you stop rolling it out – that’s normal.

To make a traditional pretzel, take the rope and form a ‘U’ shape. Twist the ends twice, then fold them back down onto the base of the ‘U’
For the traditional pretzels, lower them carefully into the boiling water with a spatula. They will sink initially, but float up to the surface after 15-20 seconds. Let them boil for about 45 seconds then lift them out with a spatula, and move them to the baking sheet.

Brush the butter on the tops of the pretzels, then sprinkle some (mixed cinnamon and sugar) over the top and add chocolate chips (use as much as you’d like).

Serve warm with a nutella-whiping cream dipping sauce.

Nutella/whipped cream sauce – Start with Nutella and add the whipped cream until you like the creamy consistency. Yum!

It’s a day of indulgence- so enjoy it for what it is!!

Posted in Cook's Nook

Cook’s nook – Makka Rolls

Splurge a little! Your family deserves these extra-special meals.

Whether lunch treat or just simply snack these makka rolls can create an impression. I used to cooked these sandwich rolls way back in the Philippines and albeit my siblings loves it toda max!!

It’s easy, requiring only a few simple steps to making a stress-free meal, while providing an elegant restaurant quality presentation.

 It’s full of amazing sweet and salty flavor. What more could you ask for in a special meal?

Here’s a delicious recipe you can try.

Hope you enjoy it!

Ingredients – 2 large eggs,milk bread (preferrable Capricorn),basil,corn meal or bread crumbs,turkey salami,single packed cheese,butter (not in the picture)
Prepare two bowls (1) for beaten eggs with basil and (2) for corn meal/bread crumbs
If your little tot offered help then grabbed the chance. It could be great example of gross motor skills (for large muscle movements). Let him roll the bread with rolling pin for few times until you can fully roll the bread without destroying the crust.
Spread butter on the entire bread then add one slice of salami and 1 single cheese (I cut the cheese into two para di masyadong nakauumay)
Soaked the makka rolls in the egg mixture until fully covered
Then bask in the bowl of corn meal or bread crumbs
Chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Preheat 1-1/2 inches of vegetable oil in a 10-12″ frying pan to 375 degrees F. Once the oil is hot enough,deep fry for 1 minute or until golden brown.
Use a slotted spoon to remove the makka rolls from the oil, and place immediately on a paper towel-lined plate to absorb the excess oil. Serve immediately!

Posted in For the love of baking

Chunky Chewy Chocolatey- Apple Cookies

I had time on my hands so I chose to try the combination of these ingredients.

Lately I am toying to add two of my fave chocolates plus I wanted to add fruits to sound it more healthier..hehe

Nutrition and dietetics experts always advise to eat more fruit as along with vegetables,fruit is a major contributor of vitamins and minerals.

Now the question is – If you ever wondered what a chocolate-caramel bar and apple would taste like in cookie form, then wonder no more…because these cookies are IT!

I can’t even begin to tell you how soft, moist, and chewy these cookies are! Promise you won’t regret gaining extra kilo over the weekend..

And because you can never resist the temptations feel free to share it your toddler especially if he likes helping you most of the time! Right Little A??

Chunky Chewy Chocolatey- Apple Cookies

Ingredients:

2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 egg 1 egg yolk

2 apples, peeled, cored, & diced

4 bars of caramel & nougat candy bars (I used 2 Snickers & 2 Twix), chopped

1/2 cup cinnamon chips (or chocolate chips)

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.

2. Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended.

3. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy.

4. Fold in your diced apples, followed by the sifted dry ingredients until just blended.

5. Stir in the chopped candy bars and cinnamon chips by hand using a wooden spoon. Drop cookie dough with a cookie scoop onto the prepared cookie sheets.

6. Bake cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely. ENJOY!