Friday, January 31, 2014

Famous Friday - Happy Chinese New Year

This morning when I checked our mail, I was surprised to find a red envelope with some Chinese characters and some fancy stickers.  Of course as soon as I saw the stickers I knew it was from my MIL.  It was address to Jeff and I, he opened it and inside was a red envelope and a very crisp Jackson.  For those of you who are not familiar to the faces in the US dollar - it's a $20.  Jeff told me that it was for me and not him since he never got this type of card until he married me, so it must be for me.  I did not argue with him because I was just happy to get the card and even happier to receive a crisp US dollar.  So what is special about the year of the Horse.  There is so much to read on it but I though I would pick three most important things about this year.
  • The year of the Horse is the year of action
  • It is the year for expansion and exploration
  • New opportunity for travel, business and adventure
Now it all depends on whether you believe all of these zodiac and predictions as well as how it affects if you were born during the Year of the Horse and how it affects other animal symbols.  There will be a lot of celebrations, parade and of course the majority of Chinese restaurants will be busy.  I look forward to getting one of their special desert that only is available during Chinese New Year.  Come to think of it, I don't even know the name but I will recognize it when I see them.  To all my friends who are celebrating this famous holiday,
Gung Hay Fat Choy!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Tequila Thursday - It's OK not to blog everyday

Each and every day that I miss doing a daily post, I truthfully feel that I have let my readers or followers down.  If you were one of those, my apologies.  When I first started blogging, my daughter told me that I don't have to do it everyday.  If I remember it correctly, during the first year, I did not miss a lot of days.  Then the second year, I am sure I missed more.  Now, I don't feel as bad missing a few days, but still does not feel right.  My daughter reminded me again, that it's OK to do three to four times a week.  It will make it more interesting and get the attention of my readers.  Truthfully, when I miss a few days, it's because I'm sick or not feeling good.  On that note, I am happy to report that I believe my colds is on it's way out, just a little sore throat - possibly from all the coughing.  I am also happy to report that I am back sewing and have a couple of projects lined up.

I found some old fabrics stored under the bed, it was timely as I wanted to make new placemats

It's also timely to show this scarf made by my sister for Gracie (Jeff's cousin) - a die hard Broncos fan

I have never seen anything more beautiful as this - Tequila inside - what's not to like!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Sweet Saturday - What is a long playing?

Sometimes in life there's something simple that makes your day just so wonderful.  When my cousins were leaving for their trip to Manila, they ask me if there was something that I really like that they can bring back.  At that time I couldn't think of anything and I did not really want to inconvenience them.  A few days ago they came back and they give me a nice treat - a Long Playing.  Everyone knows that a long playing aka LP is a record or as they call them now vinyl.  I couldn't help but laugh because when I saw the treat, it was my favorite from when I was a kid.  It's made of peanuts and panutsa (unrefined brown sugar?).  Since I can only eat a very tiny piece at a time, this long playing treat lasts for a while.  So if you have not heard of this treat, I would like to introduce to you my Long playing aka sweet peanut.  It's really interesting the way they have renamed it - a great way to advertise and for curious tourist.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Frustrating Friday - Why does it take so long?

Are you one of my followers that wonders why I missed so many daily post?  For those of you who really knows me, you probably have figured it out.  Yes I am sick again.  It all began after golf Tuesday of last week.  I didn't think of it because it felt like it was just my asthma because the quality of air was bad that day.  Then when it started getting worst, then I knew I have one of those colds that have been going around.  The only problem with me getting it is that I cannot take any of the OTC stuff and therefore have to depend on natural items to help my sore throat, congestion and a tremendous amount of coughing.  Today is the ninth day and I am still not clear but feels a little better.  There was no headache, fever or achy muscles, just a little bit tired when I start my coughing bouts.  After the third day of that, Jeff started experiencing what I did on my first day.  Whatever it is that is going around, it is still in our house.  I've been missing golf, volunteer work and get together with my friends.  Two weeks is all I am going to give it and hope that it goes away.  It is interesting that there are so many people getting sick and not just in our area, even my friends and family in Canada are going through the same stuff.  So for those of you who are healthy, stay away from the people who are sick or getting sick or recovering from being sick.  No hugs, no handshake, and definitely to kissing.  Unless you have taken those OTC (over the counter) stuff, be careful.  Just reading the side effects will definitely make you stay away from it.  Take care and for my family and friends experiencing the Polar Vortex, please stay warm.

SIDE EFFECTS - Drowsiness, dizziness, blurred vision, upset stomach, nausea, nervousness, or dry mouth/nose/throat may occur.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Meticulous Monday - My difficult client

Taking a little break from doing the same thing over and over is a good thing.  After making a number of pin cushions and finishing the new born baby order, I decided to accept an order from one client.  At the beginning I thought it would be an easy order because it was small and I have done a few for my daughter before.  The order - a manly ear bud holder.  The client - my husband.  The cost - $0.00  and so I began.  I started cutting the fabric and figure out what he was actually wanting me to accomplish.  After one proto type, I realize how meticulous he was.  We discussed it, he drew something, I tried pinning the fabrics, and so on.  This went on for at least half an hour.  Finally I think I figured it out but he was still not satisfied.  I was getting frustrated that I decided to quit for the day and told him that he would just have to accept what I've done.  For now it's off the drawing board but I know that we will have to revisit as he still wants the manly ear bud that easy to put away and take out. After all that, I forgot to take a photo to share.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Sack Sunday - NFC and AFC Championship

It's a little funny that I am blogging today about football when I still don't understand some of the rules and their play.  But even if my knowledge about this sport is limited, I know which team I would like to see during Superbowl.  I really don't care who our opponent would be as the Patriots is there.  During the season, if the Patriots are not playing we tend to watch the 49ers.  Jeff is cheering for the 49ers today and I will be too and as soon as the Patriots starts playing, then I will be keeping whatever it is that I can cross to help them win.  If this is the case, then 49ers and Patriots will both be attending the Superbowl.  This season I have watched a lot of the NFL games even if the above teams were not the ones playing.  It was more like a learning experience and Jeff usually explains if I have a particular question or I would actually really listen to what the referee would say after a penalty.  Another interesting point is that I know already most of the quarterbacks for each of the team.  A few years ago, the only thing I'm good at is naming all the different teams in the NFL.  After this season, I am happy to report that I really enjoy watching NFL Sunday and MNF because I understand the play, maybe not all, but enough to know what just transpired.  OK, it's time to watch the exciting game of football.  Whatever team you are cheering for, good luck and maybe the best teams win.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Selection Saturday - I think I'm done

Like any other sewing projects that I start, once I've done at least a dozen then it's time to quit. It has been a fun couple of weeks doing my pin cushion collection.  Although I don't do it every day, it still took some of my time each day to finish a few pieces.  Each and everyone of the piece is special because I really try and not to have something that is identical.  I guess that is why it takes longer at times.  Picking the fabric, the colors, the accessories (accent) for each is the most exciting time during my couple of hours on the project.  Every time I finish a piece and I think it's too cute, I usually send a photo to my daughter.  She is probably getting tired of seeing all those pin cushions.  One of the piece will be for my friend's daughter.  It's funny how she likes the same pin cushion as my daughter.  I am guessing it's their age or just similar taste.  My sister just told me that she also like the same chevron style.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Frilly Friday - It's addicting

It's a different kind of addiction because it does not involve drugs or alcohol.  It's a good addiction because it's creativity and productivity.  I'm talking about my pin cushions project.  It's been almost a week since I start my project and I'm very pleased to show some more of my craft.  There were new containers that I found at the dollar store.  They are miniature pails and pots.  When I saw them I thought it would be cute as long as make them frilly.  It's so cute when they are small and frilly.  My daughter says I should definitely consider having a small table at the Flea Market here in San Jose.  Maybe I could keep creating small item projects and by the end of summer this year, I should have enough to sell.  OK, I'll think about it.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Truthful Thursday - Why are they afraid to be nice?

It has been two weeks since my sister left and I keep forgetting to talk about some of the things that she noticed during her visit.  Hopefully I don't offend some of my readers but I just wanted the truth to be told.  During our shopping trips, I had to keep telling my sister to be careful when walking through the parking lot or crossing the streets.  Since she comes from Canada, she feels it is very similar here, where drivers are courteous.  I proved her wrong.  There was a time I had to pull her to the side as the oncoming car in the parking lot was a little too fast for my liking.  From then on she realized that what happens in Canada does not apply here.  One other thing she noticed is that when you are nice enough to let a car go ahead in front of you while they are leaving a parking lot or a shopping plaza, they actually don't acknowledge what you've done.  I believe they think they deserve it and do not need to be courteous by waving or even a tiny nod.  Truthfully, I am not expecting to be smiley and overly friendly, but it's a nice gesture if you acknowledge the act of kindness that one does.  A week after my sister left, I was on my way home and I counted how many cars I've let in or allowed to change lanes, etc.  you know what I mean.  It was very disappointing that out of eight cars in total, not one acknowledge what I've done.  Is it just me that feels this way or are people just not care or are just flat out rude.  Maybe I could just follow their way but deep down I know it's not right.  So there's my venting of the month, back to sewing.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Well-made Wednesday - I can't help it

Here's my excuse for not blogging for the past couple of days, I've been busy sewing.  You probably want to know what I've been sewing now.  This all began with the order for bandana baby bibs, then swaddling blankets, baby hat, etc.  My daughter ask if I had the time to make her a new ear bud holder.  If I had the time??? I'm retired, I have all the time.
During the holidays, one of the ladies in our golf league game me a really cute pin cushion.  This became an inspiration that I decided to try making different ones.  I'm still creating more different designs because I don't want to do the same ones.  You can be the judge, check out some of what I have finished and see if you would like to have one.

Cupcake pin cushions

Framed pin cushions

Flower style pin cushion

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Super Sunday - Play off is so exciting

Although I reside in the Bay area and should be cheering for the 49ers, I have to secretly admit that I am a New England Patriots fan.  You are probably wondering why and I am sure I've mentioned it on one of my other post about NFL.  Just in case you did not read it, when I was still in Canada and working, my friends have a Superbowl party every year.  That time, I really did not have a great understanding about football, but it's fun to go to these parties because it's a fun watching it with friends who are avid fans.  Another reason why I had to pick a team was that every week there's a NFL pool and the sheet comes out early in the week and you had to pick your teams for the Sunday games.  I recall one girl from work who chose her teams by the color of their uniforms and a lot of times she would win some of the money for that week.  Why I chose the Patriots, I love to say their name, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS.  That's how it all began.  Now that I am here in SJC/SFO, the friends that we hang out with are all 49ers fan.  As you know both Patriots and 49ers are in the playoff.  Almost forgot, Jeff's cousin Gracie is an avid fan of the Broncos.  She was also not an NFL fan until she started dating Kevin who is a true Denver Broncos fan.  Enough yappin'
my Patriots played an awesome game last night and now I have to watch with Jeff the 49ers game.  Good luck to all the teams playing.  The only concern I have is that if the Broncos win then that means the Patriots will be playing them next Sunday.  I better wear my Patriots scarf because it seems luck it's my good luck charm.


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Sewing Saturday - Another request

When my daughter ask me to make something for her sister in law "D", I did not hesitate to agree because it's another sewing project.  I got so excited when I found out they were for their baby that's on the way this month.  Only weeks to go and I told myself to better get busy.  The style was a bit different from the regular bibs I made.  I am guessing this is the new generation bibs.  As I mentioned before, I am not good at following directions but I can look at a photo and figure out how to do it.  Since I have a lot of photos to share,  you can just check it out yourself.  If you think you want to get some to give as gifts to someone having a new baby, just send me a comment.

Made from all my left over materials.

Chevron bib

Penguin and dots - they are held together by very tiny magnets and not velcro.

My favorite because it's so now.

This is for my MIL's neighbor Sylvia (for her 1st great granddaughter)

These are for Dianne's baby

For a little boy who will grow up to be like the Biebs

A little scary when I'm making any fabric with skulls.
I better get busy as I still have to make Dianne a couple of swadlling blankets and a little hat with a knot on top.  I cannot believe it but I made 15 bibs in total.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Friendly Friday - Only 54 more sleeps

One would think that when someone is as old as me, this counting sleeps is not applicable anymore.  Well, you've guessed wrong.  I'm still very young at heart and very much like a kid at times specially when it comes to awaiting for my BFF's visit.  After they booked their flights my buddy PJD ask me how many more sleeps and I immediately replied 60 more.  He was quite surprised that I knew the answer.  Last week I have emailed them some travel tips as well as providing my CPBB brochure.  My other friend RFE who is retiring this month will also be visiting.  I am so honored that she picked our B&B as her first relaxing week after her retirement.  Somehow I wished that she was staying longer than one week because she is not returning to work.  But I do understand that she cannot be gone too long from her home and her puppy and her significant other.  Although I have many more weeks to plan my menu for the week, I am very excited about trying different recipes which I'm hoping they will enjoy.  Of course, I can always use all the favorites of my previous guests.  We've talked a little bit of what they would like to do while they here but agreed that it's all about just hanging out and enjoying the company.  One thing we will definitely do is see a hockey game, maybe a couple round of golf, maybe even shoot some pool and listen to some live music.  If there's time we will have to take a day trip to somewhere nice and it will all be dependent on the weather.  

This one is counting sheep but I guess I am more into counting sleeps. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Tasty Thursday - A variety of food

This is still a continuation of my sister's visit.  Before she arrived in SFO, she made a list of the different places she wanted to eat.  There's a few of the meals that I was able to take photos but most of the time I forget.  Some of the meals were home made and maybe even a couple of left overs.  We tried to take her to some of the places she really wanted to try.  Of course there's so many great restaurants in our area that she will have to come back in order to try the rest of the places on her list.

Garlic noodle with shrimp

Leftover Mac & Cheese with steak and brussels sprouts

OH Honey from LeBon (BBQ chicken and pork bell)

Turkey pot pie (home made by me)
Margarita Salad with steak from Una Mas - this portion was so big that my sister and I shared it.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Worthwhile Wednesday - Craft day with my sister

During my sister's visit, we were able to do a bit of craft day.  It was a team effort.  She did all the cutting and ironing while I did all the sewing (I'm fast and more experience).  Most of the stuff we made was for her and we finished it in a day.  The other crafty item was trying to make a toque (Canadian) or beenie (USA) or beret (French) and last but not least a BMH (Bob Marley Hat).  You will see what I mean when you see the photo.  While my sister if following the crocheting pattern steps by steps, I was doing my own thing (no pattern), just winging it. 

The model has a very small head but this is my new BMH

Very colorful Canadian toque

Reading glasses cases to match every color of my sister's collection

Kitchen hand towels for my sister's place

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Trimming Tuesday - Not a resolution just a suggestion

It's that time of the year when everyone is trying to set too many goals for the year.  The most popular one is trying to lose weight.  Although that is one of mine, it's not really a resolution but just a suggestion.  When my daughter suggested to do some of the exercises she has been doing, I thought it would be worth trying it out.  Jeff and I started doing just one of them each night and our lower abs hurt like hell.  Two things come to mind, either I am way too old for this type of workout, or I am so out of shape it's not funny.  We were committed to continue this until it does not hurt anymore and are able to add more repeats and try two other kinds.  It's a floor workout and you don't really need any equipment.  Not sure what it's called by because it does hurt, we are assuming that it's working.  On top of this exercise, I started doing the hula hoop again and hopefully it will get me motivated to keep on going with some sort of daily routine workout.  Of course, I am still golfing three times a week and that involves a lot of walking and pushing my cart.  When the weather is not too cool, Jeff and I still tries to get a game of tennis for at least an hour.  Now that the holiday of eating is over, we will definitely have to start eating healthy again.  Do you have some new year's resolution?  Maybe you just have a goal in the different aspects of your life.
Whatever you have decided to change this year, I wish you the best and of course a year full of happy times, good food, wonderful connections, and last but not least a healthy year.

My sister and I taken at my friends home.  Doesn't the tree look awesome?

Monday, January 6, 2014

Missing Monday - Merry Little Christmas

When my daughter made a comment about me not blogging, it means it has been a long time since I did a post.  I know that she checks them almost daily because it's one way she can find out what her mother has been up to.  My sister left last Saturday and I miss her already. We had so much fun even though we did not do a lot of touristy stuff.  One night it was all about Skype.  We were able to do it twice with my daughter and her hubby and then one night it was just with my daughter.  Happy Three Kings to all for those who celebrate it.  One of my golf buddy calls it, LITTLE CHRISTMAS.  That was the first time I heard it so today I can also wish you a very merry little Christmas.  As this is my first post of the year, I would like to share a photo that I took this weekend.  It's like welcoming the new year so you can enter through the arch and embrace what is it that you felt.  Welcome 2014, the year of the horse.

Jeff made this arch out of the twigs from our tree in the backyard.  It's the same type of twig I use for making our lamp.