Monthly Archives: October 2010

Recall: simple life of an 80’s child

I remembered when asked to tell a story of my childhood in a ValuesEd class in high school with Ms. Ferarren, a classmate of mine commented that it was like in Tom Sawyer’s – my story. Truly, my childhood escapades were quite comparable to that of Tom Sawyer’s adventurous and truant undertakings. Growing in a barangay of a small town and in a small island, I had all the opportunity to explore and discover, and to engage in quite hazardous child’s play. In contrast, back to the high school ValuesEd class, my close friend’s childhood was quite confined to the limits of the four corners of a concrete wall that normally surrounds a house in the city. She practically grew up with hundreds of books and toys – almost all kind of toys. Me and my sibs grew up with a simple life, very seldom do we have a plastic toy. However, the beauty of a simple life is that as a child, the world is your toy. You observe, discover and create. My brothers were quite craftsmen and inventors, me I watch and imitate, and frequently almost have my fingers cut. My sister was already a young lady during that time and had different interests.

From these childhood memories that I so treasure, I am inspired to write down those memories in this blog. Specifically, I would feature the games that we played, the toys we invented, and any contraptions and accoutrement made of indigenous materials that we played with. I wish to represent them as much as possible in the best way with my own sketches. I would have loved to do them in Visio or some other neat drawings but I really got none of those now. So as a starter, here’s a sample of a ┬árough sketch. This will be featured on its own sometime.

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Taking notes at a NatGeo program?

Having been immersed in science ever since I learned how to read – grew up with Grolier’s encyclopedia, went to a science high school and pursued an undergraduate and masters field in science – pretty much, I am a huge science buff. Thus follows my extreme fascination with The National Geographic Channel and Discovery Channel. I could watch these shows for an entire day and still not having enough of it. Dang, I even actually took notes a couple of times! Yep, if I were Dr. Sheldon Cooper’s student, he would be very satisfied, would even give me a star. ­čÖé

Below is an example of a NatGeo topic I noted, and later made into an assignment. Good thing my housemate is an extremely quick and intelligent geek, he never failed to answer and even illustrate my inquiries in an instant, in a very scholarly manner, just like a professor.

I got so fascinated and amazed with Sea Launch, an extremely high-tec platform in the middle of the Pacific for launching satellites such as DirectTV, PanAmSat, and some satellite phone providers.

Here’s an instant illustrated lecture of my housemate when asked about the distance in which for example a boat would drop from a line of sight or horizon. This is in relation to the topic above regarding satellite orbiting the earth; and ┬áthe distance in which the earth curves to a certain degree.

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My search for the perfect notebook

Ever since I was a kid, I have this predilection for nice, clean, and smooth writing surface. My mother would scold me for being wasteful and disorganized, because I would tend to write on a new, perfectly smooth and fresh page. ┬áI would skip writing at the back and the following page which would have dents and traces from the heavy pencil writing. Growing up, I have changed, to be not wasteful of precious pages that is. In fact, I have the tiniest handwriting that would fill every empty surface of a page. I’d even divide the note page into two columns to maximize the space. However, my fancy for smooth and clean (with a nice scent is a plus) writing surface is still there. In fact, it has become quite a bad habit. I would buy nice stationeries, diaries and journal notebooks, sketch pads, and tiny notepads. I really fancy those clean-looking Japanese and Korean notebooks that has dainty cartoon drawings, regardless of the tag lines that do not make sense at all. I’d probably write on the first few pages, and then nothing more. They would just lie there in my plastic stationery box. I haven’t been really a diligent scribe that writes a daily journal. I do write lists however in bullet form, on important events or things of the day. And supposedly, I would transcribe these bulleted summaries to a journal entry, into those nice crispy pages… but I haven’t really.
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Ginataang “ginagmay”

For those who love Bicol express and any ginataan na ulam (in coconut milk), I would recommend for you to try this recipe. I had a sample of this when we had lunch at a restaurant in Robinson’s Manila. A friend recommended this place for its homecooked-like comfort food. He especially recommended this ginataan food, I just forgot what it is called. I liked it at first taste; it was so easy to eat. The flavor of the coconut milk, the meat and a hint of spiciness just mingled wonderfully in the mouth, while the green beans retain its crunchiness in tiny pieces. Without the chilis, I think this recipe would be a perfect way to feed those veggie deficient kids.
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Chunky fillet of fish in stir-fried veggies

It would be very beneficial if you eat fish more often than beef, pork or chicken. Fish contains a fatty acid, the omega-3, which is essential for growth and cardiovascular health. Whenever I feel sated from the greasy taste of pork or beef, a diet of fish and veggies (plus fruits and green tea) makes me back into balance. I was totally satisfied when I bought a snapper from the wet market. The white flaky and sheeny meat tasted so good, I couldn’t get over each bite of it. I bought the fish meat already filleted since it came from a really huge snapper. I suppose people would not tend to buy a big fish or even a crosswise cut of it because of the heavy bones. The good’ol vendor wisely filleted the meat.
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Pizza bene (pizzang ok)

I had a great lunch with the pizza I just made. This was my first time to actually make my own pizza. I missed Pizza Hut in LB so much, I was craving for a good pizza since last week (the Pizza Hut in Miri never failed to disappoint me). And here’s how I made it.
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Almost-Japanese beef bowl

This is quite very simple for such a tasty recipe. I was browsing for recipes online for a left-over cut of tender chuck beef in the freezer. I want an extremely simple one, ┬áthe whole time I was wishing for the Yoshinoya beef gyudon in my mind. Indeed, making one is so easy, I just don’t have the right ingredients. ┬áNevertheless, I did quite manage of what I have – without the mirin, sake, and Dashi soup. Instead, I substituted these with Shaoxing rice wine. The result is a tasty sweet savory beef bowl.

ALMOST-JAPANESE BEEF BOWL Recipe

INGREDIENTS: (for 2-3 servings)

  • 300 g thinly sliced beef – I used tender chuck
  • 1 white onion sliced
  • 5 tbsp Kikkoman soy sauce
  • 5 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 2 tbsp granulated brown sugar
  • a dash of salt
  • a dash of pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic minced (optional)

METHOD

1. Combine all ingredients into a bowl. Marinate for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

2. Bring to a boil, and simmer covered for a few minutes until meat is cooked.

Top this over a bowl of steamed rice and Moshi moshi! a tasty lunch.

Thin slices of tender chuck.

Let the flavors of Kikkoman and Shaoxing wine seep into the meat.

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