Kitchen Friends

Lately I have been seeing a lot of cooking posts on the world-wide web. The posts make me very hungry and makes me feel guilty about not spending more time in the kitchen. I look back at this post I made last year and feel doubly guilty for not pushing through with my promise. In fairness, thanks to the lovely airfryer I received last Mother’s Day, I have slowly eased my way back into the kitchen. Short-cut cooking but still cooking nonetheless. Did I mention again just how much I Love Philips Airfyer!??!!!

Here are other meals we’ve cooked up in our Airfyer.

bangus - baby bears' favorite
bangus – baby bears’ favorite
steak - family favorite!
steak – family favorite!
healthy fried chicken
healthy fried chicken
yummy liempo
yummy liempo

If you need more Airfryer recipes, you can follow I Love Philips Airfryer FB page.

For other drool-worthy cooking recipes, follow Christine’s Recipes and Bam’s Kitchen.  I have been following Bam ever since I started this blog. She is a lovely mom with teenagers – boys! Picky eaters who quite adore their mom’s cooking. She makes cooking seem so easy and always makes sure that healthy meals are on their dining table. I love how OC her blog is – with precise measurements and instructions.

I have 2 friends that I regularly ask for cooking or baking tips. For baking, I have my friend Reg Austria on speed dial. She has yet to make her own FB/IG page or website but she makes the best sweet treats. This creative baker is responsible for all our party needs. I have yet to post all of her beautiful creations that she has made for me through the years. The best cake she ever made for me was for Baby Bears’ 1st birthday party. Check out the eye candy treats she made for the 1st Birthday Ni Hao Kai Lan party I had 2 years ago and here’s another post that featured her classy creation – Air Balloon Birthday Cakes and Cupcakes.

For cooking, I have my friend, Zelda Ng. I’m happy that she finally decided to put up her own blog after much persuasion! 🙂  Not only is she a super mom but she is also a super wifey, making sure she prepares healthy dishes for the hubby. Hop on over to her new blog, Zelda Ng’s Kitchen. She takes great food shots too.  Just looking her pictures will surely give you that push you need to put your aprons on and bring out the pots and pans.

If I ever do get around to puttering around the kitchen again, I hope I can do justice to the recipes and teachings of my friends. Thanks for always entertaining my kitchen questions.  Looking forward to cooking or baking soon with you guys! 🙂 I hope to find the same passion for cooking/baking/food that you guys have.

1st Birthday Ni Hao Kai Lan Party

I initially blogged about why I chose Ni Hao Kai Lan for Baby Bear‘s 1st birthday party and attached the mood board that I used for her party preps in this post. Here are some pictures from the party that reflected the mood and feel of the event. It was definitely a happy 1st for my Baby Bear. Looking forward to many more birthdays and celebrations. C’est La Vie! 🙂

ni hao kai lan invite
ni hao kai lan invite
ni hao kai lan invite back -- labor of love by yours truly :)
ni hao kai lan invite back — labor of love by yours truly 🙂
ni hao kai lan happy birthday banner
ni hao kai lan happy birthday banner
ni hao kai lan party set-up
ni hao kai lan party set-up – comfy bean bags for the kids to sit on 🙂
ni hao kai lan table set-up
ni hao kai lan adult table
ni hao kai lan kiddie table
ni hao kai lan kiddie table
ni hao kai lan hair salon
ni hao kai lan hair salon
ni hao kai lan sweet station
ni hao kai lan sweet station
ni hao kai lan lanterns
ni hao kai lan lanterns
super yummy! :)
super yummy! 🙂
delish strawberry panna cotta by K. by Cunanan
delish strawberry panna cotta by K. by Cunanan
ni hao kai lan cupcake tower
ni hao kai lan cupcake tower made by a fairy godmother 🙂
ni hao kai lan water bottles with dragon bling
ni hao kai lan water bottles with dragon bling
ni hao kai lan cookies
ni hao kai lan cookies
ni hao kai lan loot bags
what’s a party without a loot bag? 😉
ending the party with a confetti burst bang! - 'til the next celebration :)
ending the party with a confetti burst bang! – ’til the next celebration 🙂

*All fab photos posted above were taken by our creative photographer – Ging Lorenzo

 

Checking In

Hi there, everyone! Gawd… it’s been the longest 10 days of my life! (yes, that is three exclamation points that you are seeing) 😛

First, Baby Bear got sick, then me, then Papa Bear. My life was literally on a pause button while I took care of the family. As they say, the world stops when a loved one is sick… and to think, this was just your typical cough, colds and fever… and just throw in a little conjunctivitis because the universe must’ve thought it was just an easy problem for me (NOT!) It’s the first time that the whole family was super sick. This was definitely a curve ball that was thrown my way… but as they say, you are never truly a mom until you have nursed a child back to health. Truly a test of your patience and strength as a mother.

While all this was happening, I was also busy preparing for Baby Bears’ 1st birthday party. It is this weekend already, and as the date draws near, I can’t help but be overly excited. The gifts have started coming in already… it definitely feels like Christmas! 🙂

The theme will be Ni Hao Kai Lan. She was introduced to NHK by her maternal granny (guama). She loves all her Kai Lan toys and books and gets super excited when I put Kai Lan on. What I love about the NHK series is that first, it teaches Mandarin by incorporating it into the cartoons. Secondly, it teaches a lot of values. There is always, always a moral lesson to every episode. The only thing that I don’t like about it though is that is shows the negative scenes first before the positive ones. This show had the same pattern of the much-loved Paddington Bear. This was sadly, what caused the demise of that show. This is so because according to studies, the attention span of kids are not that long so if you show the negative scenes first, that might be the one that they remember. There is also the tendency that their brains hit a snooze during the tail-end of the cartoon. What this teaches us as parents is to be vigilant in monitoring what your kids are watching and to make sure that as much as possible, you are there to supervise shows and to be by their side to explain what is happening so that they don’t get the wrong impression or take away the negative messages.

Anyway, I digress… here is the teaser for her birthday party. I’m sharing with you the mood board for her party. As all projects go, I always have a mood board that serves as the basis for all decision-making. Well, not all, but you get my point 🙂 As promised, I will blog about it once I get the pricey pictures I paid the photographer to have the event immortalized 🙂 Let me know what you think. It’s not the usual birthday party theme and I doubt that the kids even know who Kai Lan is… but this party is for my baby… so, whatever makes her happy 🙂

Ni Hao Kai Lan Party (mood board) – c/o Hi5 Parties

Counting Candles, Counting Memories

I’ve been busy prepping for Baby Bears’ 1st birthday party. As I’ve mentioned on my previous blog post here, 1st birthday parties in Manila have become so lavish and festive. I don’t know when it started to become like this but I think it’s born from a new breed of parenting. The new generation parents are now more hands-on with regards to their kids and turning 1 for them has become a very much celebrated milestone. Also, I think for our generation, we tend to be more OC about things. Guilty, guilty, guilty! 🙂 I want to share some details about prepping for the party but in a separate blog post maybe. For now, I really AM busy with the party stuff but I just wanted to quickly drop by my blog and share with you the newest toy I got for Baby Bear.

Leap Frog Counting Candles

I bought the Leap Frog Counting Candles upon the recommendation of my mommy friends. They swear that their kids were able to blow out the candle on their 1st birthday party because of this toy. Yeah, I know, I am so OC that I even thought about wanting Baby Bear to blow out the candle on her cake — hey, makes for a good picture y’know! 🙂

Admittedly, I was at first hesitant to buy it but as with all my purchases, I did a lot of research first and was encouraged to find out that the toy had a lot of features that could teach kids a lot of things. Living in a condo with little storage space ensures that all things bought has to have educational value or lots of use! 😉 This toy introduces counting and there are songs to make numbers fun. It also encourages pretend play, teaches the birthday song, and pressing the buttons encourages development of motor skills and other what nots. Teaching them to blow out the candles was just the icing on top of the cake! Pun intended! 🙂

The true test of the value of the toy is always the actual usage. I am happy to report that Baby Bear was happily pressing away at the cake. She kept holding the lights, amazed at the “glow” caused by the flickering movements. It was also funny the way she was imitating our blowing until she finally got the concept. After 30 minutes of blowing, she was finally able to blow one out! Good job baby girl! 🙂 The toy looks durable – let’s hope so!  As a plus, it comes with volume adjustment — another OC habit of mine — my need to be able to control the volume of the toys!  😛

We have but 3 weeks left to practice on the toy… 3 weeks left until the main event… 3 weeks to making sure our party is picture-perfect!

But more importantly, we have 3 weeks left before my baby turns 1… 3 weeks to yet another milestone… yet another celebration… and yet another happy memory among all happy memories! 🙂