Thursday, September 16, 2010

girls talk: going green

Whew! It was a bit of a challenge for me to find something for this week's GT - I realize i don't own anything green. Anyway, I finally managed to find something to share. I might be cheating a bit, but it's still all the right color. ^_^

First off, I live in a home with a garden (garden = green, right?). Instead of flowers and ornamental plants, we have herbs:

I love adding herbs to my cooking - they add that richness to the flavor and fragrance. I am absolutely glad that I can pick them fresh from the garden - not only do I get to save money (herbs at the supermarket are usually pricey), but I also have an option not to put unnecessary additives found in instant flavorings.

Among my loves in the garden are basil, oregano, rosemary and mint.

And while we're on the topic of green, let me share about my fascination for vermarine. It's one of my favorite materials when making fashion accessories:

Vermarine is a semiprecious stone, a mint-green colored quartz. Natural vermarine is rare, but the cheaper, lab-enhanced kind is produced by heat-treating amethyst (purple quartz). This here is a photo of a choker I made using unnatural vermarine and amethyst.

Find more green-mindedness at ...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

girls talk: purple

Being a non-fan of purple, I always thought I didn't have any purple things -but when I went around the house to look for one I realized I had quite a few. I picked the most interesting one for this week's Girls Talk.

This here is a stuffed animal with a bit of sentimental value. It was given to my by the Hubby ten years ago when he was courting (in his words "trying to get to know me better").

It's a Snoopy doll that was distributed at McDonalds to commemorate Peanuts' 50th anniversary. We and a bunch of friends used to have weekly after-church dinners at McDonald's, and the Hubby (formerly known as the Boyfriend) would get me the promo toy if I thought it was cute.

It was very slightly annoying that he kept giving me all these cute-but-useless things, but I thought it was really, awesomely sweet of him.

It's faded a bit and caught a lot of dust, but couldn't get myself to get rid of it yet. I've already thrown away or sold a lot of our unwanted stuff, but Snoopy stays. It's been with me for a decade now, so it might as well stay forever. ^_^

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

neil gaiman's yummy porridge recipe

Porridge is a Brit way of saying oatmeal (or any kind of boiled grain like champorado or lugaw). I found this recipe at Neil Gaiman's blog, in which the writer claims it to be a recipe for the yummiest porridge. I decided to give it a try and darn, it is delicious - it's got that caramelly, butterscotchy twist to it.

It comes with a warning though: Gaiman advises that it's not exactly healthy, and certainly not for eating everyday. It's just the kind to serve when you have guests over and you want to impress them, he says. I say, the flavored oatmeal we buy at the grocery stores has more junk than this, so I think this is still a better substitute.

You will need:
  • Oatmeal. Unflavored, regular, old-fashioned oatmeal, not the instant kind. Use 2 different types for texture.
  • Butter
  • Water
  • Milk or cream
  • Optional: Sweetener such as brown sugar, maple syrup or honey

  • In a pan, bathe the oatmeal in butter. Use low heat; be careful not to burn it.
  • Pour in the water and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  • When cooked, top with the sweetener of your choice and a dollop of cream.

  • I experimented by adding a dash of vanilla for flavor. Still yummy.
  • I'm thinking about maybe next time I'll try it with cinnamon and / or bits of fruit.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

cash out of trash

Yesterday, the Hubby and I held a garage sale. There was so much stuff in our house that we wanted to get rid of; instead of throwing everything away, we decided to sort the ones that were still usable and make some money out of them.

At 9 in the morning, we arranged our makeshift spread of used clothes, bags, home accessories, books, toys, kitchen appliances and trinkets. Customers started coming in even before we were finished setting up. I was so surprised that people actually came though we didn't even advertise. I guess a lot of people really have a nose for these things.

We made P 4k on our first day. Not bad, huh? Considering that we marked most of our items at fifty bucks and below (We chose to price them really low to attract buyers - and it worked. We weren't seeking to get rich anyway; our main objective was to get rid of the stuff we didn't want).

It's also surprising how other people could be interested in things we were ready to throw away. Like for example, we had a few of these glass pot-lids (the pots were long ago worn away) that were pretty much useless. A young-ish couple who came in happened to need a lid for their pot, and we happened to have the exact same size they needed.

We initially thought it would be fruitless, but we're really glad we did it. We were so glad in fact that decided to hold a garage sale every Saturday until we get rid of all our unwanted stuff. We also thought of maybe asking some friends to sell their used items too, just to bulk up the "showroom".

Thursday, September 2, 2010

girls talk: something red

I hadn't been able to join Girls Talk last month since the Hubby and I were busy with some stuff; the topic was about movies I think - It would have been so fun to join, too bad I missed it.

Anyway, I think I'll have more time this month, so here I am with my red object for the first week of September:

This is one of my favorite necklaces. The elaborate red pendant is originally from a choker my cousin made for me several years ago; I decided to save it after the choker got worn out. I made a new double-strand short necklace - I was going for an antique-ish look, something stunning and unique but not too "loud", a piece that would fit in the movie Moulin Rouge but not so fancy.

The pendant looks like an intricate wood carving, maybe even coral or red jade. Upon close inspection though, you will notice that it's just dense plastic. The black beads are just cheap glass ones, but if you put them all together they make a nice piece of "jewelry".

I like wearing this with simple black tops - it adds a pop of color and personality, maybe even a bit of a mysterious, artistic look. I've worn it with ragged clothes, I've worn it with formal wear and it works either way.

My favorite colors are white and silver, but I love red. ^_^ Red is so full of vigor and fire.

Hop over to Beauty Queen Gene to see the other ladies' cherished red objects: