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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Here and There Musings

*warning: this is a long rant of a little bit here and there musings of the author about food and lifestyle. 
White Rice, Adobong Kangkong ( or ong choy sauteed in garlic, onions with vinegar and soy sauce dressing) and Grilled Tofu in Vegetarian Sauce with onions and grape tomatoes

After 4 days of pigging out in Los Angeles, I am back to enjoying my own home cooked, healthier meals again. I sure am paying now for all those greasy, creamy, and rich foods I ate for 4 days. 1: my stomach feels bloated; 2: I gained weight!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Happiness in a String of Cheese



     Meatballs and Spaghetti all covered with cheese aaahhhh that can take away all the stress I am feeling right now. Is it stress or simply hunger or simply a craving for the taste of string cheese a delicious, nutritious snack with a taste that could make me forget all my qualms and blues. I am a foodie it just doesn't show haha because I haven't been blogging much about food. It is just that my love for nature still tops my love for eating ammmm errrr or so I think haha. Anyway like most of you in the blogosphere I most of the time dine out or cook at home for the love of taking photos. If food could talk it'd probably say "enough, enough of the clicking just eat me NOW!" hahaha. Well, someone always does the talking for them and saying "cheese" for them, the hubby who has gotten used to my "don't eat yet, I'll just take a photo of it" sentence in between gasps and ghastly motions on the table for fear he won't agree and gobble them up in a flash haha.

Monday, August 27, 2012

LA Rose Cafe Hollywood

* all pictures in this post were taken by cell phone
On my first night in Los Angeles, my friend gave me several options where to eat, of course, I picked Filipino cuisine. Not that there are no Filipino restaurants in San Diego, there are several, but most of them, the "turo-turo" style, or what is called here as, "point-point", literal translation of "turo-turo" as the tagalog word "turo" means "point". LA Rose Cafe Hollywood is one of the few sit-in restaurants in Southern California. It is located on 4749 Fountain Avenue, Los Angeles, CA.
Though it was so confusing to choose from the long list of menu, we eventually came up with empanada and fresh lumpia for starters, and then, kare-kare, crispy pata and fried milkfish for our main course.
Fresh Lumpia

Why all links should open in a separate page


Why all links should open in a separate page
Many blogs are still not taking advantage of Blogger’s new features. There are several cool new elements which are great for SEO, for monetizing, and for expanding your blogs. However, today we’ll look at one seldom-used update Blogger rolled in earlier this year. This is the feature that allows you to open all your links in a separate page.
Why it’s important to open links in separate pages
We’re all busy. Many bloggers on the internet are parents with young kids, holding down a full time job – sometimes two jobs. We steal a little time to go on the web for networking and blogging purposes. Regularly, we come across links on blogs that we just can resist clicking on. When this happens we leave the original blog we were on, and skip to another. We all have external links on our blogs. That’s how many of us make money blogging. However, it’s important to ensure that people don’t leave our blogs when they click on the links we share. We need the links to expand our articles, to credit photographers or for monetizing purposes, but equally, we need our readers to stay engaged with us and the work we do on our blogs.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Foods and Souvenir Items at Eddie's Cafe, Apgar Village, Glacier National Park, MT

Great Northern Fish and Chips
How did we learn about Eddie's Cafe and Apgar Village? Need for food, Siri and Google Maps in iPhone apps. 

Cliffhanger Cafe at Torrey Pines Gliderport


Southwest Roast Beef Sandwich and Coffee
( I needed the coffee since it was chilly )
Torrey Pines Gliderport is one of the places in San Diego where we love to bring visiting friends and family. Two weekends ago, a friend of mine was touring her visiting friend from another State. I went hiking with them at Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve. After our hike at Torrey Pines, we went to nearby Torrey Pines Gliderport for supposedly a short sightseeing. Our short sightseeing became longer because we decided to have subs for lunch there instead.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Sweet Pepper Stuffed with Eggplant


Sweet Pepper Stuffed with Eggplant
 This is another lacto-ovo-vegetarian dish that I came up with, and we ( hubby and I) loved it. I usually make vegetarian stuffed eggplant, but this time, I used the eggplant as topping. :)

In the Blink of An Eye: Lenstore, Contact Lenses and Optical Advice






     My favorite place as a child has always been the shore. I loved staring at the water as it magically moved towards me and then away from me. I chased the waves with my eyes and often wondered why the sky is blue and so was the water. I'd dive into the wondrous feeling of being carried by fluid and later cry at the sore feeling of having my little eyes stung by the salty water. Neither that nor the constant reminders of my mom I shouldn't stay under the sun for long stopped me from reveling in the thrilling sensation of being out there under the vast blue sky! My mom says I was born with these large black eyes that blinked every so often like loose windows. My only sibling has Chinese looking eyes that also blinked a lot. Mom took him to an ophthalmologist then worrying there could be something awfully wrong and mom was advised he should make him take in more Vitamin A rich foods.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Macaroni Pasta in Two Ways

From top to Bottom: Cherries, Chicken Macaroni Salad and Mac and Cheese
Talk about being confused. I was craving for chicken macaroni salad, but I know hubby does not like macaroni nor potato salad, or any salad that is not greens and the dressing has mayo. So, I prepared two dishes, macaroni salad for me, and mac and cheese for him.

Cravings For A Taste of Home

   Arroz Valenciana
I had been craving a taste of home lately. So, I made arroz valenciana and "ginata-ang tambo" (ginata-ang tambo means bamboo shoots in coconut milk). In Ilonggo version, the bamboo shoots should have crabs in it, however, since my hubby can't eat sea foods, so the vegetable dish is 100% vegetable. :) The valenciana however has some chicken meat in it, and Chinese sausage (or chorizo del bilbao in the philippines).
Ginataang Tambo                                   

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Seaweed as Hiking Snack and Vegetable Dish

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Stopping for a Seaweed Snack during Hiking
One of our favorite hiking foods is seaweed. Let me count the ways why it is good for hiking.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Blogging Happiness: Monetizing Blog

This post is not to boast about my blogging income, because truthfully, I don't really earn a lot compared to professional bloggers who are really very good in seo or search engine optimization. I am writing this post in response to some questions asked by some of my friends who are interested in learning how to earn extra income during their free time spent in front of the computer, instead of spending all their time Facebooking. Some showed interest in converting their free time spent on social networking and e-chatting into a productive time. 
Natural Bridge @ Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
( my first Utah experience in 2007 actually was the driving force why I started blogging)

I have been blogging since 2007 back in Friendster. During those days, I blog for therapy and was NOT earning anything from it. I am not saying I do not blog for therapy these days, since frankly, I must say that writing is a very powerful therapy to release some stresses away. When I started to blog, it was for the sheer enjoyment of sharing the priceless joys I often find in our beautiful world at the back roads. I was hoping that bringing the wonders of our natural world closer to the hearts of many will promote hearts that care for our natural world, and at the same time developing physical fitness, strength and endurance. When the opportunity to earn from blogging was introduced to me, I welcomed it with excitement since I already have been blogging anyway. 
Summary of My Blogging Income for the Month of July

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Food and Lodging at Yellowstone National Park

 Yellowstone National Park is an awe inspiring place to visit. It is the first National Park in US preserving the world's largest concentration of geysers.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Benefits of Engaging in Sports Activities

Engaging in sports activities on a regular basis do not just improve the physical health but also develop the person’s overall personality. Aside from the fun and excitement, there are also proven health benefits that can be acquired thru sports. Early exposure of children to sports can help build the competitive spirit in them and also teach them to accept success and failure with optimism and confidence at an early age. Discipline and sportsmanship can also be learned on top of developing physical strength by engaging to any kind of sports.
@ Torrey Pines Golf Course

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Memories from Balboa Park's Lily Pond

Lily Pond, Balboa Park
Yesterday, I saw on TV how the lily pond has been heavily vandalized. Something so hard for me to imagine that could happen. For years since I moved here in San Diego, Balboa Park has become one of my "to go" places. I love going here, enjoying the mix of culture and nature. I love going to the museums, and also checking the gardens. Each time I go here, I always have beautiful memories.
Pink Lilies @ Lily Pond

Monday, August 13, 2012

What happened to the New Mobile Yahoo Messenger Voice?

Sorry, breathing out here!

For years, I had been using yahoo messenger voice calling family and friends back home. It is very cheap! If I call YIM to YIM, that is, if the person I am calling to in the Philippines has also a fast internet connection, the call is better than phone to phone. Plus YIM to YIM is FREE!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Seaweed Salad, Lingling Dumplings and Suman Sa Ube Dessert

Seaweed Salad and Costco's Lingling Vegetable and Chicken Dumplings
I was so tired and lazy yesterday after our boogie boarding in the afternoon. The waves were so powerful that I probably had the hardest time of my life maneuvering avoiding the wrath of the waves. Nevertheless, we had so much fun, especially we saw a lot of at least a foot size fishes. Because there were many fishes, so there were also a lot of birds diving and swimming with us. When we got home, I was lazy to cook, haha! Whenever I am lazy to cook, I turn to meals that can easily be prepared. Like the seaweed salad above, which all I needed to do was mix bean sprouts, sea weed, thinly sliced onions, grape tomatoes, in vinegar dressing.  With the seaweed salad, I steamed some ready to cook Lingling Vegetable and Chicken Dumplings that can be found at Costco. 

Sonoma wine tasting

For quality wine, look no further than the vineyards of Benziger. That's the claim made by their website, and I have to say they lived up to their promise.

Saigon Bistro and Grill, Rancho Bernardo, San Diego, CA

Shrimp Cake, one of my favorite appetizers ( very similar to "okoy" in Philippines)
Sweet Potato and Shrimp Fritter Over a Bed of Lettuce and Fresh Mint ($8.95)
Location: 16769 Bernardo Center Drive, Suite K8, San Diego, CA ( in the Rancho Bernardo community)

to eat the shrimp cake, we wrap it over lettuce topped with fresh mint
The Saigon Bistro and Grill in the Rancho Bernardo Community of San Diego offers a lot of Northern Vietnamese cuisine, in addition to the more popular pho. There are so many Vietnamese Pho Restaurants in San Diego, but only a few serve other Vietnamese specialties. When I crave for something sea food and Vietnamese, but not necessarily pho, this is where we would go. However, for pho, we prefer going to pho restaurants instead such as Pho Ca Dao or Pho Hoa Cali, because their price for pho is cheaper. 
Aside from sweet potato and shrimp cake, my other favorite appetizer is the Stuffed Escaergot. It's actually stuffed escargot meatballs with ginger. 
Stuffed Escargot, another appetizer favorite ( $9.45)
The restaurant has a wide selection of items, from appetizers, to entrees, to desserts, to drinks. Very popular in this restaurant is the Catfish Fillet Curry with Eggplant.
Catfish Fillet Curry with Eggplant ( $10.95)
Though the catfish fillet was the very 1st entree I tried in this restaurant because I was looking for catfish in fish-caramel sauce, which the restaurant does not serve. Though I find the taste very good for most fish curry I have tried, but I still wish they have catfish in fish-caramel sauce, which is probably my all-time favorite Vietnamese fish dish. The second fish dish I tried in this restaurant is the Thang Long Grilled Fish. Now, I like this a lot better than the fish curry above. 
 Thang Long Grilled Fish ($12.95)
Accompaniment for Grilled Fish ( Rice noodles, seasame crackers and mints)
The thang Long grilled fish is served on a hot sizzling plate, flavored with baby dill, shallots and Asian Herbs. I love this very much, that I had to ask the server what exactly are the other herbs since I will make it at home! :) Of course, I did not get a specific answer except the baby dill and shallots. :( 
The price here is a little bit pricey compared to most Vietnamese restaurants. Again, if we wanted pho, or any broken rice or vermicelli meal, or the more common Vietnamese foods, we go to the other Vietnamese restaurants in the area instead. This is where we would go however, whenever I crave for seafoods, and hubby gets crispy noodle instead. :)
To go the restaurant's website, please click Saigon Bistro and Grill.

Some of My Favorite Images From San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Do I really have favorite images from Safari park? Actually, I have hundreds of favorite images :) But since I do not want to take so much of your time showing the hundreds, I will share a few pictures in this post, and maybe, share the others in later posts. 

Here are a few for this post.

Giraffes.....sometimes, it is great to view them from afar to watch them enjoy the vast field....

London Apartments, Flowers and Love


     As a child I have always dreamed of wearing a crown. I got to wear one, oh well still as a child during one of those community festivities. Holding that scepter with my left hand and flowers on the right, wearing a sequined white gown with a little king beside me fulfilled that childhood whim. Now things have changed, obviously I have grown and that dream of becoming a queen has turned to being able to visit a place where there are royalties. Why not visit London? The Buckingham Palace with its largest private garden is first on my list. I would love to get to the state rooms which are open to the public each year around August and September! There are London Apartments easy to locate, affordable and tailored for one's needs and itinerary which could be found with the expert aid of Londoners who have been in the place all their lives like Robert and Polly Arnold who spent so much time and have gathered the best experience in London Apartments and Hotel booking, welcoming guests from all over the world. One could find the most suitable apartment to spend resting after a day of touring the beautiful sights in London at their site which is a product of their twenty-two (22) years of giving personal assistance to London travelers during short or long stays. They have three (3) kids named Rachel, Jonny and Mike and I am sure they know best when it comes to safe, enjoyable and affordable family trips. I dream and plan and save for a trip to London. In the meantime I take time to treasure that majestic feeling of being loved, cherished and adored like a queen by the love of my life.

Love most certainly gives us crowns and the most royal of feelings. May your hearts be always filled with the magic of TRUE LOVE.

~thanks to Zen of The Letters of November for this post ~


Saturday, August 11, 2012

What is Exciting About My Life? :)

Swimming With The Leopard Sharks
Before you get scared that I am swimming with the sharks, let me first clarify these are the harmless leopard sharks. :) Leopard sharks are species of houndsharks, harmless to humans and found along the Pacific Coast of North America. They measure 4 - 5 ft long, and their slender body is identifiable by the striking pattern of black saddle-like markings and large spots over its back. Aside from being harmless, they seemed to be also friendly, we were surrounded by maybe hundreds of them today while swimming.

Build Your Online Presence with SEO Consulting Services

Guest post by Rovs A.

Building an online career by being an online worker or a business person is a wise decision. With the advancement in latest technology and the presence of the internet, everything is possible with just a click of the mouse. The most basic thing to do when planning to build an online career is to at least be visible in the World Wide Web.One can start by creating online account on the social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, You Tube, Pinterest and many more.

With social media, you can invite friends, acquaintances and even strangers to follow you or communicate with you. When you want to be found easily on the search engines, you can easily ask assistance from seo consulting services. Asking help from the experts will surely make your site noticeable in no time and will help you generate more customers online. The decision when hiring seo sonsulting services to back up your online endeavor is really crucial, that is why careful research is necessary.

There have been a lot of people who succeeded in building their empire online with the support of seo consulting services. But, be warned though, that not everyone who projects as an SEO expert is trustworthy and can delivered the expected result. Knowing when and how to work your way to build your online career is a decision that needs thorough consideration. Everything is a gamble especially in doing business. In the end, only you who can decide what should be the best thing to do that would surely benefit your endeavors and achieve your business goals.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Long Exposure Slow Shutter Speeds

Me @ Cabrillo National Monument
 (this is at fast shutter speed, the pictures I took from this point are the pictures 3 and 4 in number 2 below)

I am not an expert in photography, nor I claim to be one. Though I love taking photos, but hardly I have the time to study anything about photography. Everything I have learned were self-taught, mostly from exploring my camera settings.

A Vacation In Las Vegas

Las Vegas Blvd @ night
A lot of people would probably go to Las Vegas for only one thing: the Las Vegas strip. The Las Vegas strip is about 4.2 miles of Las Vegas Blvd (above picture ) where it has many of the world's largest hotels, resorts and casinos. This vibrant city is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. 

Toronto Dance Coach

Guest post by Nice

Toronto is a nest of talented people in art and music. Talent auditions and shows emerge to discover the best performer. While there are lots who like singing and acting, we can say that much more are inclined with dancing. Dancing soothes the soul. It helps us express our deepest emotions, be it joy or angst. Dancing also has a variety of styles to choose from such as hip-hop, tap dancing, jazz, ballet or ethnic.

Buy One, Get One Half Off at Famous Footwear

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Famous Footwear for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine. - Rovs A

Shopping for the children’s school needs can be quite expensive especially if they are enrolled in an exclusive school.  Aside from the responsibility that comes with being parents, it is also a dream to give the best of everything to their kids. So no matter how costly it may be, buying the most needed items for the school opening will always be a part of every family’s budget. One of these needed items we know is a good pair of shoes.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Setting Up Google Analytics with Multiple Domains

For others...blogging is so simple! All you need to do is write, and hit publish! I was like that before, and well, I must admit, I am still like that, most of the time!

But then, I got a notification from Social Spark that this blog ( I maintain two, and I help maintain another one with my TSS group ), does not have google analytics installed. I am sure my other blog, The Joys of Simple Life, and the one I help maintain with my group, have google analytics installed since I set them up before when I saw from Icy's post, how to install google analytics in your blog. This blog I only started last year, and I must have forgotten to install google analytics in the html of my blog, or I thought, I could get away with it.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Flapping Wings and Quality Enrolled Agent Continuing Education


     I am at at chapter in my life when I am no longer afraid of change. I used to be someone who would rather stay at her comfort zone and simply let the years fly by. I was happy, yes that I was certain of until I opened my eyes and took a closer look at the outside world. I was quite surprised to have found a yearning in me to cross bridges and climb mountains professionally that is. To cut the story short I am now juggling my time between motherhood, married life, and career enhancement and my passion for capturing images.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Feel The Rush, Sea World San Diego's Manta

Last weekend, we decided to feel the rush in Sea World San Diego new Manta ride. Well, I just took pictures of hubby though since I always get dizzy riding coasters. Frankly speaking, I only had tried the Journey to Atlantis in Sea World and I got blue bumps after the ride. :(