Our First At Inatome

As it has always been in the almost sixteen years that we’ve been married, new year’s eve was spent at home. Knowing how so many parties happen during the eve of the new year (you know how parties and alcohol mix all the time), we always stay away from the road.

Hence, our new year’s eve celebration was new year’s day itself. But before we headed out, I asked my ‘photographer’ to snap a picture. I knew that was going to be the last photograph with our Christmas tree in the background.. Truth be told, we dismantled and put away every piece of Christmas decor the following day.

new year 2016

We were with family and friends, and dined out at Inatome Japanese Hibachi Steak House and Sushi located in Long Island. It was our (husband and I) first, but the rest of the group have dined there gazillion times. We learned that it is family owned and operated. It’s like a hidden gem  at this part of Long Island.

new year 2016 inatome

new year 2016 inatome

new year 2016 inatome

That was our Hibachi Chef showing off his antics.
new year 2016 inatome

new year 2016 inatome

We had a great time. As always, being with family and friends over good food is the essence of every celebration.

Annual Tradition

Snow in the morning, sunshine at noon. How fickle is the weather here in the Big Apple. We were blessed with 4.5 inches of snow earlier today. I was quite surprised of the accumulation, but I was more surprised when it brightened up and mr. sun showed up in full glory.

That was today, and in spite of the cold temps I’m so looking forward to the warmer temps.

Forgive the slack, I was not able to document our once a year trek to Coney Island and Luna Park sooner. Not that life was really hectic, but I just didn’t have the mojo to write. As you can see, this was in the summer. Oh how I miss the abundant sunshine!

coney island

coney island

coney island

coney island

coney island

coney island

coney island

Of course, my husband had to play  Pac-man. This never fails to bring back childhood memories.
coney island

coney island

coney island

coney island

Nathan’s is always a must while visiting Coney Island. No, we didn’t have the famous Nathan’s dogs. How boring! But to each his own :-)
coney island

coney island

After walking a couple of miles, I finally admitted to my husband that my big feet was beaten up; I picked the wrong pair of shoes. It was not enough that they’re a pair of flats, they’re simply not made for walking miles. I couldn’t wait to sit down to ease the pain. What a lesson learned! In a few months, summer will once again roll around. And when that annual trek happens, I will make sure my big feet are ready to take it on.
coney island

Christmas Eve 2015

The past two Christmas eves, my husband and I opted to stay home and turned down invites from family and friends. We wanted to experience it on our own by dining out and going to midnight mass. All of the years that we’ve been married, we’ve always celebrated the eve of Christmas with friends and family. The past two years gave us the chance to do it our way, and while it was great and we were happy just the same, last Christmas, we figured it was time to go back to tradition and spend the eve with family and friends.

Instead of the usual midnight mass, we attended the live nativity mass at 5:00 pm. We thought of leaving the party midway to go to midnight mass, but we decided to just go to the earlier mass so we  didn’t leave the party midway. The church was decked beautifully inside and out. I snapped several photos. The live nativity was compelling but for someone like me who is used to seeing live nativities growing up, the ones we witnessed paled in comparison to the grand and well rehearsed ones in my hometown back in the Philippines.

As you can see in the pics below, we had a lot of fun. It was one long night, and it was one warm Christmas eve it felt like Spring. We wound up hitting the road to go home by 2:00 am. The one good thing about traveling at that time was we were home in no time because there was no congestion on the parkway.

xmas 2015

xmas 2015

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xmas 2015

xmas 2015

xmas 2015

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xmas 2015

xmas 2015

Thanksgiving Day 2015

*backtracking continues. please bear with this no-superwoman housewife

Thanksgiving this year was spent with family and friends on Long Island. As usual we had to go through gargantuan traffic both ways, but it was all worth it. Since my husband had to go to work the following day, we left Long Island a bit earlier than  we’re used to.

thanksgiving 2015

Turkey seasoned differently, anyone? Yes, it was not the usual turkey fare, as it was prepared using South American seasonings. I have to admit that I had a taste of it and it did agree with my palate just like the other guests. The roast pig however, I had to say no to. I’m sure you can imagine what I ate that night, being a self confessed pescetarian for years.

thanksgiving 2015

thanksgiving 2015

thanksgiving 2015

thanksgiving 2015

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thanksgiving 2015

thanksgiving 2015

thanksgiving 2015

It was fun being around people who matters the most.

Merry Christmas From Our Home To Yours

(front)
xmas 2015

(inside)
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(back)

xmas 2015

(front)

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This year, it’s the first time ever that I opted to have two personalized Christmas cards printed.

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xmas 2015

(back)
xmas 2015

It’s A Red Kind Of Christmas

Christmas has taken a new meaning this year as my husband is now a full pledged Catholic. You can just imagine how he was so excited to help me put up the tree and decorate for the holiday.

Our Balsam Hill tree was up as early as November 15. It was not done in one go however. After he put up the tree I went to work with the ornaments. This year I decided to adorn our tree with red ornaments to add to my growing collection of Wedgwood and Royal Albert.

I’m more than glad that our pockets were not as drained this year, as I only have to buy a few to add  to the Wedgwood and Royal Albert ornaments that I already have. I didn’t even purchase the Wedgwood bless this home ornament, thanks to a dear friend who gifted it to me on my birthday this year.  I bought the Wedgwood red snowflake teardrop (6 pcs) and figural cross (3 pcs), Royal Albert cream jug (6 pcs) and bauble ornament (6 pcs). Add to that a couple of dozens of wood poinsettia, 2 dozens of the red figs and 110 pcs of shatterproof red balls plus of course the red tree skirt.

I wanted to make things simple so I made use of three dozens of live potted 6 inch poinsettia to adorn our home. As you may have guess it already, it’s been a nightmare trying to maintain them (lol pagod na ako sa kakadilig) but I’m trying my best to keep them alive and kicking. Two hanging stars made of red and white yarns (I think), a Kate Spade bright red table cloth and an embroidered table runner round up my indoor decor for this year.

Outside, nothing can be as simple as the red laser lights. It’s a plug and go kind of thing so it was a wise choice.

I hope you had fun decorating your home just as we did.

xmas 2015

xmas 2015

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xmas 2015

A Night Of Hope

In 2014, my husband and I planned on going to Joel Osteen’s A Night Of Hope at the Yankee Stadium. We were not able to attend. Tickets available at the time when I was trying to procure them were not desirable. This year however, was a different story. I went but my husband did not. I went with our church friend. While our husbands were busy at work, we took the chance to be with the thousands of Joel Osteen followers.

night of hope

night of hope

Getting into the Barclay’s Center was a breeze via subway. I met up with my friend at the gate. Entry to the arena was a breeze as it was handled in a very orderly manner. Not for long, the festivities started.

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It was an afternoon (it was a matinee show that was added to accommodate everyone because the evening show was sold out) of music (with a live band), ministry and inspiration. Joel Osteen, his wife Victoria and their two children as well as Joel Osteen’s mom (who gave a very inspiring message) were all there. It was a revelation seeing the children singing with the band. Apparently, it’s been a family tradition that the children join them when they bring Night Of Hope in the different states.

This is what I needed. My friend and I came out of the arena renewed and feeling inspired. Osteen is a compelling speaker. He actually broke down at least three times. Though it was one of those frigid nights (which was unusual for Fall) and I actually caught a cold ( which quickly went away) probably due to the air-conditioning in the arena, I will most likely find myself again wherever the venue may be when Joel Osteen brings A Night Of Hope here in the Big Apple.

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

night of hope

Saturday Jaunt

After a few weeks of getting acquainted with ‘Trixie’, my husband and I decided that it was really imperative to go for the BMW Encore Program and have a one on one session with a BMW Genius. I secured an appointment in August, and although we went out of our norm and had to start our Saturday earlier than usual it was a very productive day.

After the one hour session, my husband and I came out more confident and better equipped to ‘play around’ with ‘Trixie’. Oh and not to forget and we were pleasantly surprised to find out  after the session that the dealership will top off the car’s gas tank (throughout the one hour session by the way, the engine of the car was on). It worked out real good for us, as we didn’t go with a full tank. In fact, we only had a fourth of the tank so we definitely did good. Hey this freebie was nothing to sneeze at. After all, Trixie needs premium gas and as recommended we only fill with BP Gas.

bmw encore

bmw encore

Since we were around the perimeter of  Riesterer’s, we agreed to drop by the bakeshop. It’s been ages since our last visit. We sat down for quick, light snacks, grabbed some pastries to bring to my sister’s (we had dinner at their house that night) and we brought home four decadent double dipped chocolate donuts for the following day. I must say, these donuts really tasted so good after many months of not indulging on them.

riesterer's

riesterer's

riesterer's

riesterer'sriesterer's

We attended the anticipated Mass at Blessed Sacrament. That church is my all time favorite place of worship. There’s something about it that I can’t explain.

8-22-2015

8-22-2015

8-22-2015

8-22-2015

It was a late night. We were at my sister’s house for several hours. It was good in a way as traffic was moving well when we finally took the parkway.

2015 Backyard Barbecue

After turning down invites for backyard barbecues the past couple of years, we finally gave in last summer. We made sure we attended only one though, and it was good enough.

For someone like me who has turned pescetarian, do you think there was something for me at the barbecue? Yes! And I’m so glad the host/hostess thought of my dietary restriction. After many years of not eating anything in the form of meat, just the thought of indulging makes my stomach queasy.

Call time was early afternoon. There was congestion on the parkway but we took an alternate route and we were in Long Island in no time.

mellow yellow

mellow yellow

Pictures were intentionally pixelated for their privacy. I didn’t want my attention getting called again when these friends drop by my blog and they see their faces here.

2015 bbq

2015 bbq

2015 bbq

2015 bbq

There were children in the party. This was meant for them to enjoy and they really did. Too bad I didn’t capture pics of them (except this cute boy) roasting his marshmallows.

2015 bbq

2015 bbq

I tried so hard to stay away from sweets but there were just too much temptation that I had to give in. There were at least three cakes, and tons of these treats that were all chocolate.

2015 bbq

2015 bbq

Till next summer barbecue :-)

Saturday Jaunt

Animal print… Zebra no less. I was in the mood for it. I actually got up on the right side of bed so it was apparent. I was lazy to put on makeup however, so please don’t mind the bare face. A bright lip tint, hair tied up and I was ready. Surprisingly enough, a few people in church commented I looked radiant. It must have been the inner glow because I felt great and happy.

So they say, no makeup can mask a rotten feeling. I should know it happens a lot.

Dinner was at Pho Hoai, and the usual Starbucks treat.

8-15-2015

8-15-2015

8-15-2015

pho hoai

Juicing Has Taken A Bit Of A Backseat

I just went through my files and came across these photos. Boy, I’m guilty that I haven’t used my Hurom juicer in a long time. Not that I stopped my morning ritual at all. I just shifted to using my Vitamix more often, and instead of making juices, I’m making smoothies cum juices.

I have to admit that using the Vitamix is a lot easier. The prep work is essentially the same, but the clean up is significantly easier and less time consuming with the Hurom. And of course, we get to enjoy the fiber as well instead of just the juice.

Yes, we. Because my husband gets his daily dose too. I make sure that his dose is prepared the night before, stored in one of my mason jars and ready to go with him when he heads out the door for work. I prefer vegetable and fruit with 80/20 combination; 80% veggies and 20% fruits with my permanent ingredient – ginger root.

beet juice

beet juice

pineapple juice

beet juice

watermelon juice

green juice

cantaloupe, mango, orange

wheatgrass juice

Wheat grass juice is the hardest to make. It requires some kind of technique to make the most out of the grass. To date, I’ve only made wheat grass juice once. I hope one day I will have more patience to deal with it.

wheatgrass juice

wheatgrass juice

Saturday Jaunt

What’s the best way to kick the blues? Wear something vibrant! Yes, it was one of those days when I simply was not ‘all there’. I’m sure that I’m not the only one who goes through those days. Pulling off an ensemble like the one I was wearing in these photos did the trick.

8-8-2015<

8-8-2015

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And just like that… I was able to normally function and ended the day right. We later headed to Fuciaana for dinner and scooted over to Starbucks for my husband’s weekly espresso fix.

Laughing Out Loud

Over the years, I have amassed a good number of Pidro shirts for my husband. All of them were purchased during our vacations in the Philippines. For those who do not know what these shirts are, Pidro is a brand with designs incorporating Pinoy humor.

On weekends, we tend to rush through and do our errands. There’s not much time to accomplish every single task so my husband and I tend to feel somewhat harassed.

One time, as we were about to head out, I noticed something rather unusual when my husband alighted from the bedroom. I was quick to snap a photo of  him using my cell phone. It was not that long until I burst into laughter. He was wearing his shirt – front in the back. How he did not feel the odd feeling (as a result of the shirt worn the wrong way) on his body was a big question mark.

pinoy ka

pinoy ka

We had a good laugh. Of course he did not head out clad in this shirt worn the wrong way. I could imagine the looks that would have been thrown at him if he did.

Saturday Jaunt

Looking at these pics, I can’t help but yearn for those good, old summer days.

7-25-2015

7-25-2015

As tagged, these were taken in July, and of course, then we were in the middle of summer. I apologize for posting stale materials but because I’ve been perennially lazy in updating here, so this is the end result. What else is new?

7-25-2015

Our first time to dine at Europa Restaurant was great. We were in the company of good friends and of course awesome Italian food. My husband and I both loved the interior, ambiance and the exceptional service. Yup the sun was shining bright at 7:30 p.m. This is something that we no longer get in  this part of the world. It’s now dark earlier in the evening.

europa

europa

Incidentally, this post is ‘trixie’s’ first with me on it. I think I have to get used to seeing a blue metallic background instead of orange.

It’s Been Working Like A Charm

After the ‘demise’ of our 11 year old GE Profile dishwasher last May, and more than 2 months of carefully researching and deciding what I wanted to get and do with the space, we finally settled for another dishwasher last August.

I initially wanted to install a kitchen cabinet on the space that the ‘dead’ dishwasher occupied. I went high and low looking for a cabinet maker that was willing to take on such a small job, but nobody dared to take it. It must have been destiny that nobody wanted to do the job because a few weeks of not having a working dishwasher, I started missing having one. Washing dishes and pots and pans was a big additional chore for me.

So I started my research on the new breed of dishwashers out in the market. MIELE was my first choice of brand. I’ve stalked the only store in our area that sells them. But upon thorough research, I discovered that it is a potential money pit. Aside form the fact that the units are pricey, the recommended detergent is also expensive. So I turned to my second choice – BOSCH, also another German brand. I didn’t waver on doing a thorough research on the model that I zeroed on and finally went to buy it. We waited for almost three weeks for delivery and installation so we finally had a new working dishwasher last August.

bosch

If I loved the GE Profile, shall I say I love the Bosch more? Yes, it is really possible to fall in love with a dishwasher. It is insanely quiet, the dishes come out sparkling clean and toasty dry. Just like our old unit, we also got something with a food disposer.

bosch

bosch

This one however has a 3rd rack which is convenient for kitchen utensils, something that my old unit didn’t have.

bosch

It is so quiet, the only indicator that tells you it’s running is this red info light which automatically turns off once the dishes are ready.

bosch

bosch

I’m hoping that it will give us years of repair-free performance. After all, Bosch is well known for their innovation as well as dishwasher performance and reliability worldwide. It’s another German brand after all.