Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: She loves ice cream

Friday, September 16, 2011

Uniform for Nannies?

I've seen them.  Nannies and helpers in uniform.  Maybe royalties or really rich families who have a number of nannies and helpers at home could see the benefit of having them in uniform (let's say because of a number of them at home, they want to make sure they can track them or identify them easily), I am not really sure it is necessary for normal families who has 1 or 2 nannies or helpers at home to be wearing uniform.  I feel like it's some sort of social status tripping.   

Yes, being a nanny and a helper is a profession and a respectable one at that.  And many other professions wear uniform like doctors, nurses, health aids, waiters, cooks, etc.  But in this, we go back to the idea like how it is with royal families or families of really high stature leaving in big manors with hundreds of helpers.  But of a normal family with one helper or nanny who stays with you at home, is it really necessary for them to use a uniform?  When I see a middle-class family out on a tour or a lazy walk, with the nannies tagged along in uniform,  it's like they're trying to tell the world they are so well-off they can afford themselves to hire someone who can "serve" them.  

The other day, while I was browsing some pictures from a social network, I've seen in one of the pictures  someone I personally know (very chic and always made up) having one of those normal walk in the park with her baby in a stroller being pushed by the obviously nanny - wearing a uniform.  I had to zoom in the picture 3 times and see if the nanny is really wearing a uniform.  Perplexed I was.  That is why I started having this thoughts about nannies, helpers and uniforms.  The question resonated in my mind.  What for?  Maybe to look more professional? To look cleaner?  There could be tons of reasons and perhaps many of them are valid... from where I stand? I just don't think it is necessary.

And it is sad because I've been seeing how nannies and helpers are being treated in some households and   I don't agree on many of them.  Not to mention being paid a measly salary.  Many would pay a very low salary and then expect that the nannies or helpers will be perfect in everything service related.  Tell me if there is no injustice there.

I do know of horror stories with some nannies BUT just because there are few who are probably disturbed, it doesn't warrant anyone to automatically treat the nannies or helper they'd hire as such.

Maybe I'm over analyzing things or maybe I am too cynical.  Maybe I am the one judging.  But  I sure wouldn't require our nanny to wear uniform.  

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Crashed Potato

Looks yummy? IT IS! 

Let me tell you a short story first...

Yesterday, I wasn't so sure what to prepare for lunch.  I wanted something really quick but not a blah if you know what I mean.  Hubby is still watching his diet (I suppose we all should watch our diet for obvious health reasons, yes?) so that also added some more challenge over the choice of what to cook for lunch.  And I must say, this scenario repeats itself everyday.  The never ending question:  What to cook today?

Somewhere along the way, between work, like a manna from heaven this recipe popped up on my screen.  It looked a bit complicated at first but as I was reading the step by step and looking at the photos, I realized it was totally on the contrary.  We love potatoes in this household and potatoes is one of those items in hubby's diet list (provided by the family doctor) that can be eaten daily.  Easy recipe? Favorite foody? Can be eaten daily?  We have a winnerie! I know there's no such word as winnerie, but I am trying to make everything rhyme ok? Just dig it.

It turned out so good it will be a crime if I do not share it.  While you can just follow the link above for the recipe, I have here my own version.  Sooo here we go!

Put amount of potatoes you like into boiling salted water.  The presentation will be prettier if you use smaller potatoes, so then you wouldn't have to cut them.  I only have humungous potatoes at home so I had to cut them into smaller pieces.  But I tell you, it didn't affect the taste of this recipe in a bad way at all.  No need to peel the potato.  The fun is in the skin!  Just make sure they are washed thoroughly :)  Let the potatoes boil until fork-tender.

Here you can use a cookie sheet.  I don't have a big one so I just used the oven tray and covered it with a baking sheet.   Then I poured over some olive oil.  This is the part where I wish I have an oil dispenser so I can pour the oil in a more even distribution and then it can look more professional.  But hey, no sweat... you can just spread the oil with the potato or a brush.

Line up the potatoes and make sure you put enough space between them.

Crash the potato.  This is the heart of this recipe.  If you have a potato masher, yay for you! Use it.  Crash the potato down in one swift movement then rotate the masher 90 degrees and then crash the potato down again.  If you are like me and you don't have a potato masher, be creative and use anything that can work to flatten the potatoes a bit.  I used a combination of the bottom of a glass and fork to give texture.

Using a brush, spread olive oil on top of each crashed potatoes.  Be generous, don't be afraid.  Or yes, be afraid and watch out the calories :-D  Don't say I am not promoting good health.

The original recipe called for Kosher salt to be sprinkled on top.  I don't even know what's Kosher salt so therefore, I don't have it at home.  But I have my pink salt and it was just perfect.  I am so loving this Himalayan salt.  Just like how Kosher was described, Himalayan salt adds pizzazz in your food but not making it taste like salt.  I don't know if that makes sense but it's just cool!  So sprinkle whatever salt you have at home.

Here you sprinkle some rosemary or whatever herb you like.  I used rosemary and garlic powder.  We love garlic here.  You can also sprinkle some cheese perhaps or even bacon bits.  Or if you want to go a bit wild on the health issue use butter instead of olive oil to spread on top of potato. You can choose healthier or yummier :-D  The possibilities are endless!

Ok, then finally, put the cookie sheet or the baking tray on the top most rack of the oven with high temp like 230ºC or 450ºF for about 20minutes or until you see potatoes turned into beautiful yummy golden brown.

When done, scoop them out, baby! and impress your hubby or loved ones at home :)  Eat them, they're really good!  Just by the smell, you'd know it's amazingly good.

This is a very good side dish.  With steak perhaps.  Or it can be your main dish too if you are a real potato lover... then add some cauliflower or broccolis on the side.. .again the possibilities are endless!

So here are my potatoes.  I know they are nothing like the first photo above.  That one is from the site where I copied the recipe from.  Remember, I didn't use potato masher? Coz I don't have one? So my potatoes turned out a little bit flatter.  But they're good.  I am not even sure I'd prefer it any other way.  Being flatter, it made the potato really crispy.... so I guess in the end, it depends on how you like your potatoes to be :)

I tell you, try this out! You won't regret it.  It's suuuuuuper easy and terribly yummy.  It was so good, hubby and I decided to do it again in the evening.  You know I'm talking about the potatoes, right? Yeah, the crashed potatoes ;-)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: The rearview mirror pleasure

The beauty of the rearview mirror... I can catch her unguarded moments.  

Then a priceless smile when she saw me in the mirror looking at her.

While we have this baby on board sticker at the rear window of the the car? I got this Philippine flag in front to say "Filipina on board" LOL

Monday, September 12, 2011

Is it time?

... for an anti-aging cream?  I turned 32 today and suddenly the thought hit me.  Is it some sort of 30s syndrome?  I don't know but I suddenly caught myself several times looking at the mirror closely to pay special attention on my skin.  Perhaps it's kind of getting dull and dry on some areas.  I didn't find any wrinkles yet (or maybe the light is just a bit a dim) but I feel like time is already showing.  I am not conscious about my age.  I openly tell people about my age without any hesitance - unlike many fine women :)  But then I do like to have good skin and would like that my skin will not be telling people that I have 10yrs more than I actually have.

And yes, mommy or not, we should be taking good care of our skin, yes?  Of course nothing beats a good 8-hour sleep, good eating habits and exercise and drinking 8 glasses of water a day to having good skin.  All of those are easy to do in a perfect world.  But while my world is a happy and perfect for me, it's not THAT perfect to give me 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Plus, I have special weakness on junk food.  Also? I hate exercising.  Another thing? I don't really count my water intake and through an intelligent guess? I don't think I'd reach 8 glasses of water a day.  So, yes, I am a total wreck when it comes to "being healthy"

That's why I need some help from these hydrating/moisturizing/nourishing creams... and now most probably a rejuvenating cream :)  

So maybe it's time to retire the current hydrating cream (a.k.a hubby's cream) I am using and use an anti-aging one? 

I've read that asian skins are lesser prone to early signs of wrinkles.  Age is shown first through discoloration and maybe sagging.  Maybe that is why I am not yet sporting some wrinkles and almost all of my asian friends that of the same age as mine.  Also? I look at my mom and it makes me hopeful coz at age 57, she doesn't have obvious wrinkles yet.   Then again, we don't have the same health habits so genes might not just work 100% on me. Sooooo there I go, contemplating on an anti-aging cream.

Thoughts girls? At what age have you started using anti-aging creams (if already using one)?  At what age should we start considering anti-aging creams?  Any recommendations? :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Air travel with a toddler - stroller; with or without?

We're spending C H R I S T M A S in my beloved Philippines! -ber months has started and I feel like I am already running out of time to prepare.  And since we are going with a 19-month-old-by-then toddler, I am kind of anxious on how I will be able to handle this.  It'll be my first time to travel (looooonnnnggg) with a toddler.  I'm sure things will be alright but I just can't help but get obsessed with how things would go.  There's just soooo many things to think about and consider.  This is going to be LSP's looong flight.  We flew to Madrid once and she was just about 4 months by then and it wasn't bad at all.  It as just an hour flight though so I can't really compare it to what we are about to experience.

So I thought perhaps, to start with "preparing" myself for the long flight,  I'd write some tips I find while I read articles about the subject matter and then my thoughts and questions as well, so I can get some first-hand tips from my readers.

Our flight is going to be about 20 hours in total including airport waits.  What I have been contemplating a lot for now is whether we should bring a stroller for Little Spanish Pinay or not.  Since this is going to be across continents flight and we don't fly to Philippines quite often, I am pretty sure we'll be packed up to the limits.  So the thought of having an additional stroller to think about and stash, etc is kind of pushing me back about bringing one.  Plus, we'd have to buy (or maybe borrow) a different one than what she already has since the one she has now is not precisely light.  

Still the thought of having another carry on apart from 2 carry-on luggages, my personal bag and a diaper bag, is making think back and forth.

This is what she currently has and it's not really good for bringing in the airpot as it is everything but a light stroller.

LSP is going to be just 19months by then.  Obviously already walking.  She loves walking on her own.  So I am imagining she'd prefer to walk around on her own than being in the stroller during between flights waits - especially that everything is going to be something to discover for her.  If that will be the case, then perhaps a stroller will be just be an extra baggage for us.  Then again,  I start to imagine scenarios like what if we need to run from one gate to another or LSP gets tired - a stroller will be handy.  Plus we can also use the stroller to put our bags if LSP prefers to run around on her own.  But then, I can also just bring our baby carrier.  With it, I can run with her from one gate to another.  Plus since she wouldn't have her own seat in the airplane, being in the carrier,  she can sleep on me and I'll have my hands free to do something else like hold my hubby's hand (hee!) or read a book or play DS.

I am still so undecided!  Hubby's first inkling is not to bring one but he's not really the type of sweating it out by trying to imagine different scenarios especially complicated ones.  He's so positive about everything (even in life in general) that he doesn't really consider much whether it is best to bring a stroller or not.

So, my dear bloggers... any tips and thoughts and kind words? :-)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

I'm not a part-time mom

I don't like labeling. But let's admit it, in this world, things or events or occupations and just about anything has to have their names, otherwise, it'll be a complete chaos or texting would really be tiring. 

Imagine everytime you need to mention your job, you'd have to say,  I take care of  keeping and inspecting the financial accounts of a company.  Instead of just saying I am an accountant. 

You get the jist.

But when it comes to motherhood or being a mom, I am uncomfortable about the terms full-time mom for moms having the privilege of being able to spend their 24x7 with their kids to mother them. If they are full-time moms, what does that make someone who has an 8-hour job? A part-time mom? 

No, ma'am.

I work 8 hours a day, 5 days a week (and sometimes a few hours on a weekend) but while I work, that doesn't mean I stop being a mom. Jobs can be full-time or part-time. Full-time if you work at least 40 hours a week. 40 hours because that is what's (theortically) just necessary for someone to do his work duties according to their job description and according to (in general) labor's law (at least to most countries I know). Part-time if it is anywhere less than that because someone else (another part-timer) would replace you in order to fill up with the remaining time in a week or in a day necessary for the same job to be done.

But what is the schedule needed to be completed for a mom to be considered full-time? When I am at work, I don't cease to be a mom. Being a mom is not a role for me that can be removed and set aside while I sweat my forehead to bring home bread. When I am not with my child, I am still her mom. Even when she gets married and move out our house, I'll be her mom. When I am not with her, she is still my responsibility even if someone else is caring for her in my absence.  My day job? I am only responsible with the databases when I am on duty... otherwise, if there's any problem that would occur, I'm not required to do anything or work, so to speak.  Being a mom is not like a job or profession where you can forget about being so when work schedule has ended.  So no, I beg to disagree that one is a full-time mom and then others would fall into the part-time mom category just because we leave the house to earn a living.

I'm not criticizing moms that use the term full-time moms being when they are stay-at-home moms as this term is not something they invented.  The term has just been there and I am 100% for sure it's not being used to mock working moms like me.  But nonetheless, it does make me reflect on what does that imply about moms who work.  Call it being guilty?  Maybe I am guilty that I spend time working isntead of being with my child every minute she needs me - just like how I'd imagine myself doing in my perfect world - and so hearing another mom declaring she's a full-time mom gives me that defensive feeling? I don't know but I just strongly believe it isn't fair.   More than a profession or a vocacion, motherhood IS relationship with your child and that relationship is not and cannot be "temporarily stopped" while one is not with her child to do her way of helping with the house bills.  So it can never be part-time.
I am a mother. Full-time and for a lifetime.  Period.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Facts of me from A-Z

I'm generally a shy person and more of the listener rather than the talk-about-one's-self kind of friend.  But Lexie of voiceboks has created this ABC's of me event and I thought I just have to participate as everyone's having fun.  Voiceboks is really a wonderful and helpful site for moms (and everyone else) to build network and traffic.  If you haven´t joined voiceboks I really suggest you join.  It´s a fun site and everyone´s just friendly and supportive.

I am actually enjoying reading everyone's ABCs than creating mine :) but a girl's gotta participate too and not just stalk ;-)  So here goes mine.

Artist.  Escape artist, that is.  Having a little one that only sleeps with the boobies and holding on to THE mami, I learned to become a very good escape artist freeing myself from her clutch and not wake her up in the process.

Breastfeeding enthusiast.  We've been breastfeeding for 16months and 2 weeks now!

Contortionist.  See letter A.

Devoted to my family.  My family is my life.

Environmentalist.  At least, I try to be.  We cloth diaper for instance :)

Filipina and a very proud one at that! 

Green.  No, not green as in dirty mind! Green as in earth-friendly.

Homesick most of the time.  I do have a new home now as I have formed my own famiy with a doting husband and a perfect daughter but I still miss my first home all the time.  It's really hard to be oceans away from the people you love.

Introvert in general.  I love mingling with people, I love making friends but I was never a big fan of having night-outs though I enjoy them once in a while.  Most of the time, I just love spending the weekend at home cuddled to hubby while watching our fave movie or tv shows. 

Jolly.  I am generally a jolly person... but yeah, sometimes I do have my dramas too.

 Keen on smells. I am very sensitive on smell inspite of having a very small flat nose.  I consider it a blessing.  But when I got pregnant?  Doomsday for me.  Or rather doomsdays. Everything smells sooooo strong and irritates me to no end.  The coffee smell that I am so inlove with?  It was unbearable for me. 

LOL.  I love to laugh out loud and I do laugh out loud.  Even in public.  Sometimes, I scare people.

Married to the man God has chosen for me. 

No sense of direction. Gosh I swear, I am terrible with directions and I just wish I am the other way around.  I get lost ALL time. 

Oceans away from my parents, siblings, relatives and friends.  But they are always and will always be close to my heart.

Passionate about motherhood.  It's a dream that has now come true.

Queer.  I can be odd sometimes like I love to sleep with a pillow on top of my head (especially in the eye area).

Reserved most of the time.  I'm gnerally a shy person (anyone would like to disagree?). Except when I laugh.  I love a good laugh. 

Second to the eldest in the family.  I have 4 sisters and a brother who's the youngest.

Tearjerky.  I'm quite the emotional type and normally would have a hard time controlling my tears.  I would cry when I get really, really angry.

Unavailable. Sorry, boys!

Verdant when it comes to baking (and maybe to so many other things in life heh!).  But I am really enjoying baking especially when hubby loves  what I bake. 

Wide-eyed, which was often the cause of me getting teased a lot by kids when I was young.  I was called by different names because of having big and wide eyes.  Kids can be really mean, you know.

eXuberant when it comes to showing and giving my love to my daughter.

Yummy to my husband. No one can dispute that!

ZzzZZZzzzZZ'ng is my favorite past time.  I can practically sleep anywhere.  In a bus, in a jeepney, in tricycles, in a metro, in airplanes,in taxis, in cars, and any moving vehicle I guess :).  The movement lulls me to sleep!

Wow, that was tough!
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