Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sweet Sunday - It's like a scavenger hunt

A few days ago I posted about my new favorite snack called Sweet Ballz.  The day after my post, Jeff took me to seven different 7-11 and we found three boxes at one of the location.  I wanted to send a box of each kind to my daughter but I could only find the Cookies and Cream and the Chocolate.  So the next day, I ask Jeff to take me again for another hunt (almost like a scavenger hunt) and this time we only went to six locations but unfortunately, we did not find any. What a disappointing mission.  I needed to mail the package to my daughter so I ended up sending her two boxes (one of each flavor).  On Friday night we were going to meet some cousins at some bar near San Francisco.  I asked Jeff if we could stop at another 7-11 if we see one on the way.  It so happen that the street we were making a left turn had the store.  I quickly went inside and was so excited to see a supply in the basket.  Of course I bought 7 boxes.  You're probably thinking why would I want to have so many.  I like sharing them with friends and since it's package so small and cute, it was a nice quick gift.

My favorite is the red velvet, then cookies & cream, and last is the chocolate.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Surprise Saturday - BJ's opening

Sometimes it's nice to get a surprise of any kind.  Last Wednesday while at my volunteer work, one of my co worker ask me to join them for lunch.  Our unit was invited to a dress rehearsal at BJ's - a new restaurant in the shopping plaza close to our location.  BJ's is a franchise and although Jeff and I have been to at least three locations, this one was new.  The great part of this lunch was everything was complimentary.  It was only open for friends and family.  Initially I was not included but since there was a cancellation, they ask me to join them.  Why would anyone refuse a free lunch? Right!  I manage to remember to take photos and all in all, the food was good, the service was satisfactory and the decor was brilliant.  Only negative comment, the dessert that was offered to our table was under cooked.  Since I have tasted the same dessert in another location, I knew exactly how it should taste and this one was definitely not done.  We had to send it back and my friend got a simple scoop of ice cream.
Chicken limon with artichoke, spinach, tomatoes with angel hair pasta.

Chocolate chip pizzookie (pizza style cookie) which was under cook.

Two shrimp tacos with chipotle sauce and napa cabbage slaw.
By the way, BJ's is also a micro brewery and they do have some excellent beers.  I am sure that this restaurant will do well because of it's location.  Someday I will have to take Jeff here to try their new menu.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Filibuster Friday - Is it possible to use this in a relationship?

Filibuster - a word that I was unfamiliar with until I heard it on the news the other day and I actually had to ask Jeff to explain the meaning, etc.  

Filibuster:  an action such as a prolonged speech that obstructs progress in a legislative assembly while not technically contravening the required procedures.  Synonym: delaying tactics, procrastination, obstruction.

Is it possible to use in a relationship? Maybe not a great idea but I am sure some people use it and it might be construed as nagging or bitching or even whining.  Honestly, I do know some people who are using this in their relationship and for some, it actually works.  I guess I am just lucky (ha ha ) that Jeff and I don't have to resort to this specially on Friday.  We tend to discuss items or things we want to do, majority of the time it is decided within minutes.  If he does not agree with what I want, I usually just let it go and I believe he also has that choice.   This process does not seem to be a solution to issues because it could be prolonged (as per definition) causing a lot of stress for those involved.  If this is how the government deals with issues of the country, then now I can understand why they have a lot of problems. After all of the above, I think this is just a bigger word for adults having a TANTRUM.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Truthful Thursday - Pillows need some fluffing

The throw pillows on our sofa and love seat are looking very flat and lacking some fluffiness.  These were the original pillows that came with the set.  If I remember it correctly Jeff bought them about five years ago.  Each time I use it when I am relaxing in the living room, I need to fluff it but it doesn't really do anything.  This past week I decided to take it apart, make new casings and fluff the batting inside.  In addition to this process, I also bought new fabrics to change the other two plain looking pillows.  After making two, I thought of adding another one.  The photos might not show the true shape but Jeff and I are very happy with the new and improved throw pillows.

The one on the left is the original and the one on the right is the fluffier one.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Want Wednesday - Sweet Ballz

What are Sweet Ballz? They are like Timbits (if you are Canadian you would know) with fondant icing) or like donut holes (only in the USA) with frosting.  We were watching Shark Tank on the weekend and one of their guests were two guys who are the creator of Sweet Ballz.  The way the Sharks reaction after doing the taste test was not a surprise. It looked soooh good.  We also found out that they are only sold at 7-11 stores.  Last night after dinner Jeff and I decided to check it out.  We found only four boxes left in their front counter.  Once we got home we decided to have it for our evening snack.  It does not matter where you are, try and check it out.  I managed to take a photo before we ate them so I can share them with you.  I am hoping to check another 7-11 to see if they have the other flavors.  The best part about it is that it's reasonably price and it's packaging is so cute.  You don't feel you are cheating because you will be satisfied with just eating a couple.  Yummy.  Do you want to try it?
Red velvet cake on the left and cookies & cream  on the right.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Tapsilog Tuesday - Restaurant Review

TAPSILOG - is this even a word, yes in the Filipino language.  I am guessing it's their own acronym for: Tapa (beef) Si (fried rice) log (short for itlog meaning egg).  The neighbor of my MIL gave me a section of their newspaper featuring this new Filipino restaurant in Campbell area called Tapsilog Bistro.  After reading the review we thought we would mention it to my cousins who have not heard about this place.  It is very interesting that they did not know because they love checking out new and the not so new restaurants in the Bay area.  On Sunday we decided to check it out and it was actually busy that we had to wait for a table to be cleaned.  There was no big line up but there were other people also waiting.  The place looks more of a sports bar but they upgraded the decor and added some Filipino art work.
The employees were a mix of nationality but noticed that the Manager/owner is Filipino. The atmosphere is a bit loud because there was a couple of sports show (NFL and MLB.  Their waiters were friendly, attentive and knowledgeable.  The timing for ordering and actual arrival of food was good.  Unfortunately all of us (Jeff, me, MIL and my cousins) were not impressed with the taste. The portion of each entree was plenty, presentation is ok as well as the cost. Each meal had a mound of fried rice, two fried eggs and what ever meat you choose.  I did remember to take photos but we all agreed we are not coming  back.

The tocino (sweet port) is too dry.

Torta aka omelet needs more meat and eggplant.

Pancit Bihon aka Noodles with some chicken and hardly any vegetables.

Although the fried chicken was crispy, you can taste a lot of vinegar in their marinade.

Monday, September 23, 2013

More Monday - Star Wars Collection

This is the second part of yesterday's post.  I reserve some of the photos for today so I can show case the rest of the pieces of this collection.  We already have wrapped the gifts using star wars wrapping paper.  It was a bit scary looking at some of the characters and I hope the baby would not have nightmares.

Baby wipes holder for travel.

Baby bib - I have a perfect model.

Burp pads for Mom and Dad

Change pad for travel also.

The collection.

Diaper holder for travel.
Now that I have completed this project, I am now in search of another fabric with patterns of frogs or bees with the colors green or yellow for the next collection which is due in November.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Starwars Sunday - I did not even know the difference

When I checked our mail box last Friday, I found a postcard invitation for a baby shower.  It was from Jeff's sister who lives somewhere outside of LA.  Because we know that we won't be able to attend this shower but would still like to send some gifts, it was time for me to get working.  As you have seen in my past blogs, I love sewing babyshower gift sets.  For this particular set, I was a bit confused only because I was not familiar with the subject matter.
I was out and about and decided to check the local fabric store to see what is available.  I got so excited as I found these fluffy fabrics which I thought would be great for blankets.  Before I went to get it cut, I called Jeff to make sure that I have the right theme.  While on the phone I asked Jeff: "Is Star Wars and Star Trek different?  In my hand was the Star Trek theme but I actually needed the Star Wars theme.  By this time I was not sure if I would find any.  I went back to the same shelves to return what I got and lo and behold, there was the StarWars fluffy fabric.  Not only did I find that particular one, I actually found other designs in the flannel section and in the right colors. I got it cut, paid for it and it was a successful errand.
Easy baby blanket that is so fluffy.
On Friday night, Jeff helped me tie all the square knot all around the blanket.  It did not take us long to finish it and I told him that I would like to make one in a different design and color for our living room.  This way we will have something to keep us warm during those really cold winter nights.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Succulent Saturday - My future plans

Today is the first day of autumn and I have decided that instead of planting more flowers that will just be eaten by the ground squirrels, it will just be succulent plants.  It will be placed in four big vase and my friend Jean will help picked which one will be the most low maintenance and easy to care for.  I have checked the local Home Depot, Lowes and Orchard Supply for what's available.  Once Jeff has emptied these vases and add new potting soil, then we will go out and buy these succulents.  I thought of checking out some of the photos online to give you an idea of what I would prefer to be in these vases.

A bigger version of this would work perfectly.

Different colors of this type of perennial will probably survive in our backyard.
Any of these would be fine but they'll be all together similar to the above.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Freehand Friday - Back to my nail art

The recent disappointment of getting my pedicure done at the Queen Nails made me get back to doing my own pedicure again.  This time I gave myself the whole works, soaking my feet, scrubbing, brushing, trimming, moisturizing and many more. I also did my manicure but only did a change of polish.  Enough words, here's the results.

Just simple design with dots on the big toe. 

This is Tyler design.  I seem to recall Steve during his last season at the American Idol, except his was gold and black.
I chose these two colors because the turquoise matches the color of my fall purse and since hockey season will begin soon, it represents one of the SHARKS colors.  I am planning to have this color and then just use either black, white and maybe a bit of orange for my accents.  This will be my way of cheering for the San Jose Sharks.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Twitter Thursday - Still debating

When Twitter was still new, I remember Jeff's cousin telling me to join it because we needed at least one in our family.  She said that I will be the perfect one to represent the rest of the family since I already have a blog.  I thought about it for a while and then forgot about it.  A few months later I asked my daughter about it and she thought it was also a good idea, but only if I wanted to.  The days just flew by and one day decided to check it out on line.  I found out that there's a maximum character you will have to use - 140.  Since I already know that it will be difficult for me to stop at that number, I decided maybe it's not for me.  While watching Tennis and Golf, I always see all these comments of fans following their favorites on Twitter.  Again, I back to debating on joining and researching more.  Jeff mentioned that I don't necessarily have to write something but I could just follow my favorite people and see what they have to say, etc.  I know that I have to come up with some sort of name that is not taken, then I have to sign up, hopefully I would have read all the rules and policy about it.  Say I did all that and got the hang of it, who would I be following?  How long would be the list? Let's begin in no particular order.
  • Sheldon Cooper of the Big Bang Theory
  • Caroline Channing of Two Broke Girls
  • Roger Federer
  • Rafael Nadal
  • Maria Sharapova
  • Ricki Fowler
  • Adam Scott
  • Paula Creamer
  • Na Yan Choi
  • Florida Georgia Line
  • Train
  • Carrie Underwood
  • Scotty McCreery
  • San Jose Sharks 
  • New England Patriots
As for my name, I thought about the following but have not checked to see if they have been taken, but it's a start just in case I do decide to join.  Do you have any suggestion for me?
  • CPBB (cranberry portage bed & breakfast)
  • Iyaroak (inuit for apple of the eye)
  • Chanceuse (french word meaning lucky girl)
  • Pleaides (name of seven sisters)
  • Lucky60 (simply me)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Watching Wednesday - The season has begun

It is very scary to admit that there are days when Jeff and I just sit and watch a few shows after dinner.  Does that make us couch potato?  Or is there such a thing as couch sweet potato? Why sweet? It's because we sit together side by side and enjoy catching up on the days event during commercial.  But before we start watching our favorite shows, we have to do our daily chores.  Dishes, garbage, tidying up, watering plants, laundry maybe, grocery shopping, and what ever chore needs to get done.  Jeff had already recorded the different shows that we like and of course there are some shows that are only his favorite not mine.  Since we can only record two shows at the same time, we will save some recorded ones for times like this.  It's one of those give and take as there are shows that we each like and unfortunately it's on the same time and same day.  That is when ON DEMAND comes in handy.  I can do all the catch up if I want during the day when I'm home and Jeff's at work.  Here's our list starting from the shows we watch together, then Jeff shows, then my shows.  What are your favorite this season and do you have different favorites or are they all the same. 
  • The Big Bang Theory
  • Two Broke Girls
  • Mike and Molly
  • Modern Family
  • Grey's Anatomy
  • Parenthood
Jeff's List
  • Under the Dome
  • Grimm
  • Once upon a time
  • Walking Dead
  • Falling Skies
  • Revolution
Luckie's List
  • Dancing with the Stars
  • The Voice 
  • American Idol
  • Hockey Games
  • Golf & Tennis
  • Diners, Drive-ins and Dives

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Transplant Tuesday - The plants are happy

Gardening is not my favorite and you have heard me post this many times.  This weekend while Jeff was working on the yard, I took the time to figure out how I can make a few of my indoor plants to look like someone was taking care of them.  There were some empty good looking pots in our backyard which I could use.  I organize the tools, some potting soil, watering jug and took the four plants I have.  Transplanting them to a bigger pot was not that difficult.  Taking each plant from their old pot one at a time and then finding the right pot was actually not a bad experience.  Now I am proud to say that I did it and I am very happy that the plants look healthy in their new home.  Since they are in a better pot, I decided to rearrange them so they can get some sun and a bit of shade through out the day.
Here's how they look now.
This plant was given to my about two years ago and it flowered at least four times.

A spider plant was given to me by Byddi (new friend) two months ago. 
My jade plant that I bought six months ago and it's looking really good.

This is Jeff's palm tree that he had for at least nine years.  It really needed some new soil.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Minuscule Monday - Just when you think

In life we all have to deal with different issues on a day to day basis.  At first we tend to take it as such a big deal with such difficulty.  After taking it in and going through the thought process, we realized that truly it's not that bad at all.  There's one thing that I will never forget and these are words from my daughter.  I was going through some health issues and I was sort of freaking out about the news.  Sharing some of my life's struggle with my daughter makes me feel better somehow.  But one day she told me that, "if you were able to survive after the loss of your son", anything after is just minuscule".  From then on, each and every time I have to deal with anything, this little voice of my daughter seems to remind me of that.  If you have taken one of those one day course on how to deal with stress and how it affects your health, you probably have taken a different approach to your daily issues, worries or problems.  So if you are having one of those days, here's some reminders.
  • Learn how to say NO!
  • Look at the big picture
  • Stay away from people that drains/stresses you
  • Don't fill up your schedule to the max
  • Take time to enjoy some free moments
  • Share your feelings with a friend
  • Think positive/remove the negative
  • Keep your sense of humor
  • It's OK to forgive to ease the pain
  • Adjust your standards
  • Relax, Exercise, Eat healthy, Nap

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Squirrel Sunday - It's not cute when....

Remember about two years ago when I first got here and I started my little flower planter box.  The flowers were pretty and just growing nicely until the squirrel started eating the petals and ruining my first ever planter box.  From then on I started to hate them, oops I'm sorry that word is too harsh.  I dislike them and because of what they've done to my garden, I have not planted since.  When we joined our neighborhood watch in our are and had met some really nice ladies who were into gardening, their first complaint - those damn squirrels. 
Later this summer, another group formed to deal with the squirrel problems in the area. We found out more and more of our neighbors are disliking them.  It's not cute anymore when they destroy your flower garden.  It's not cute anymore when they destroy your perfectly vegetable garden.  It's not cute anymore when they start digging in your garden and make a bunch of holes for hiding their snacks or treasures.  Some county department is dealing with it and suggesting several ways to somehow discourage this squirrels to be in our property. There are so many of them are making their homes on the hills but apparently there's one neighbor that is leaving them peanuts and that is why they are heading out to the homes around our street and in the couple of courts.  Do you have squirrel issue where you reside? Does your state or city have bylaws regarding their termination?  To date we don't have as much issues with them as our neighbors because I have no plants for them to eat.  Not yet at least.  As mentioned before Jeff recently planted new ones but they won't be ready for a month.  Hopefully whatever crops come up is not something they like to eat.  Jeff said " squirrels are just rats with fluffy tails." STILL NOT CUTE - as they belong to rodents family.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Special Saturday - A different breakfast

What makes a breakfast special?  It's when you order something that is not in the Menu and they can accommodate that request.  I've actually never tried it before but the last time I went with my friend Nikki for our weekly breakfast get together, I thought I would try it. The idea was from my cousin who was out with us last month for breakfast.  You are probably wondering how special this breakfast was.  This time I remembered to take a photo.
Linguica, over easy egg, rice pilaf and small bowl of fruit.
Some weekends they have something different from the regular menu - their specials!!  The other favorite of mine is the Chicken Waffle with white gravy on the side.  There are three pieces of crispy fried chicken, the nice thick waffle and syrup, and the country gravy which is white gravy.  It's probably not the healthiest one on the menu, but once a year for breakfast is not bad, right?

This is not from Country Inn Cafe but it's similar as the gravy is on the side and not on top.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Freebie Friday - Not the best way

It was around 700 pm and we decided to have dinner at place called Johnny Rockets.  It's probably not the healthiest type of food, but I was hungry and craving for hamburger.  Jeff loves this place specially their milk shake.  We went to the one close to home as it was on the way.  The place was not overly busy which was perfect.  We sat in our usual spot - in the bar area - although not a real bar.  The waitress gave us the menu and shortly after another waiter took our order.  While he was talking to us, two guys seated a couple of bar stools away, stood and started heading for the door.  The rest of the staff was busy and for some reason I ask our waiter, "did those guys just left and not paid for their meal".  The waiter was behind the counter and really couldn't jump over and ran after the guy.  He continued to take our order, spoke to his supervisor who immediately went out.  By this time the two guys have driven off and I was too late to get the license plate number.  It was a bit shocking to me that people would do it so casually and with other patrons in the restaurant.  Now the poor waiter will be short and will have to take a cut in his pay for the day because of some inconsiderate people who just ate and left.  What is interesting is that there's a big plaque on their wall that says - PLEASE PAY. The waiter said "maybe they were illiterate and couldn't read. I wonder if the two guys do it all the time to get a free meal.  It's too bad the restaurant did not have a camera so they can print the photo of the two undesireable people of San Jose.  On another note, the smores milk shake was awesome, the sweet potato fries were crispy, the hamburgers were cooked to perfection and the service was great. 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Trailing Thursday - Such a surprise

With the latest news of the release of more Apple products, it is truly amazing what the world can do.  I don't have to elaborate on it but I'd like to share my own take on this.  A couple of days ago on my way hope after golf, I was just enjoying my drive home and there it was.  I was at a stop light and something colorful caught my eye.  On my left was a shiny colorful classic car.  There was plenty of time to take my phone, take a photo without the driver knowing it.  I remember that it took a very long time for me to own a camera. Then you have to wait until you used up all the film, get it developed, etc.  Now, I am here posting my blog and the photo is ready for your viewing.  Once you see this car, you'll agree that it's pretty amazing, not only the car but the fact that all of you can see it. I don't own an Iphone but I am very happy with my Samsung Galaxy S3.

I need to learn how to take better photos. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Weeding Wednesday - Preparing for new plants

The summer is almost over because the summer squash and zucchinis are not producing anymore.  This weekend Jeff pulled all the rest of the plants and have decided to start a new crop.  He is going to try a different way of planting strawberries.  I believe it's called upsidedown way.  I have to see it to believe it.  In the meantime where all the squash plants were, now we have a few different variety. There's two kinds of lettuce, broccoli and cilantro.

Two kinds of lettuce - hopefully they will look better in a week/

Broccoli bed

Strawberries has to start here and then transferred later to the upside down process.

One lime so far this summer - enough for four tequila shots.
Don't forget to pause and remember the families who lost their loved one on 9/11.