Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Modhesh World

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, June 30, 2009 6 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Andreas turned 18 months old last Friday so the treat for him is a visit to Modhesh World at Dubai Airport Expo (this sprawling entertainment area is part of the 10th Dubai Summer Surprises).And what an inexpensive treat that was! All children below 3 years old were admitted free. Adults only need to pay 10 dirhams each.

And for that amount we were able to watch several acrobatic shows, magic shows, participate in group dance and percussion workshop. We had soo much fun we actually stayed for a good five hours! There were also kiddie booths courtesy of the government departments that encourage arts and crafts for kids. Because my little boy was still too small to do anything crafty, we went for crayons. There was a fire engine truck to color for the Dubai Civil Defense, there was Sparky and Splashy from Dubai Electricity & Water Authority. When kids submit their finished arts, there were gifts of craft package and complimentary drinks.

I share with you some of our weekend snapshots.



The Giant Sand Box


Modhesh Theater - where we watched acrobatic stunts imported from Romania.


The Dubai Civil Defense Kiddie Booth. We colored some fire trucks and were given gifts.


Then we took Andreas for his first bump car ride!


Next stop was the Baby Gym. Andreas enjoyed it soo much he made three rounds. His Dada was so impressed with Andreas able to follow the mini obstacle course.


This is the Giant Soft Play Area where we spent our last two hours. Shows, tricks,and surprises were non-stop. There was even a tribute to Michael Jackson where kids danced to Beat It and made a huge circle. It was a very touching moment.

Dubai indeed is full of surprises this summer!

For The Glove of Michael

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, June 30, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
My aunt once said that Michael Jackson is the best dancer in the world and that there is nobody else better than him. I was 9 years old then and wanted to disagree since I think MC Hammer was a great dancer too. But I kept my mouth shut and wondered since when did my aunt listened to Michael Jackson. All the cassette tapes i see in her room are Peter Cetera and Laura Branigan.

Then shortly, my grandmother took my brother and i to her friends house. They gossiped and exchanged recipes and not wanting to be disturbed, her friend allowed us to watch betamax. The only tape they had was the Moonwalk. Jason and I sat there with other kids from the neighborhood and watched for more than an hour. But halfway through the movie, i declared myself in-love with Michael Jackson. Jason wished he was among those kids who were rescued by MJ. For a long time, Moonwalk was my favorite movie.

Two years followed and television reached Batanes. There was only GMA 7 and the rest of the channels were from Star TV and MTV. It wil be my first time to watch music videos and although i was already then a huge follower of Sting and the Police, Michael Jackson's music videos were my favorite - and so were his dance steps. For the first time, i secretly agreed with my Aunt. I share with you today my all time favorite MJ music video - Remember The Time.

May your soul rest in peace, Michael. Thank you for sharing the world your genius. Thank you because you made us one with your music. Thank you because I saw a legend in my life time.

Music Videos by VideoCure




I also want to take this opportunity to acknowledge my newest blog awards. The first one is from new blogger friend, Mommy Jona.



Thank you so much, Jona for this thoughtfulness. I will pass it as soon as i can decide who deserves it most hehe.

The second one is from Mommy Twinkie. And this I am ready to pass but first, my heartfelt gratitude to Twinkie for always remembering.



The simple rules:

♥ Take your award and put the logo on your post.

♥Link the person who awarded you.Remember each recipient of the award should acknowledge the person who honored them and go to Mom's Special Diary to copy and paste the award.

♥Put your own blog title and link.

♥Nominate deserving moms from your blog list. 1.Mom's Special Diary 2. The Mommy Journey 3. Twinkie Calls 4. Kero's Celebration 5. You're next

The Most creative Mommy bloggers I know would definitely be:

1. Ann of Me, Myself and Darly
2. Issa of About A Boy
3. Jona of A Time To Weep and A Time to Laugh
4. Yaying of Mumster's Degree

Grab your award when you have the time, Mommies! A cyber martini for all...cheers!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

weekend snapshot # 51

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 28, 2009 13 sweets for Kero Links to this post


We were out for our evening stroll last Friday and I saw this room for rent advertisement.



More weekend snapshot here.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bacon & Cheese Muffins

Posted by Kero at Thursday, June 25, 2009 7 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Here is a great alternative to your weekend pancakes or waffles. Sometimes, I even pack these when we go for a picnic. Healthy too for toddlers as it punches calcium and protein.

Bacon & Cheese Muffins
Makes 12 pcs



Ingredients
50 g unsalted butter
2 eggs
1 tsp sweet paprika
150 g yoghurt
220 g flour
3 tsp baking powder
60 g crispy bacon bits
2 tbsp chopped spring onions
75 g cheddar cheese, grated

Here's how
1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease muffin pan
2. Beat the butter until creamy. Stir in the eggs, paprika and yoghurt. Mix well.
3. Fold in the flour and baking powder, and finally the bacon, onion springs, and cheese.
4. Divide the mixture between the muffin cases and bake for 25-30 minutes or until springy to touch.

Happy cooking!

Toddler Meal # 6

Posted by Kero at Thursday, June 25, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I am feeling weekend-y now but got to post this before i start my cooking lasagna. Here is another breakfast i prepared for Andreas.



That is homemade bacon and cheese muffins, slices of banana, and a diluted cocktail juice (the last of the give-away). Andreas probably eats banana everyday - probably because they need to replenish the potassium lost for being so active. Banana, yoghurt, and orange as you may have noticed by now are a staple on my son's diet.

I will be posting my bacon and cheese recipe soon. And that is the only time i feed Andreas with bacon pieces (he is as devoted to meat like his Dada). Cured meats maybe be very easy to prepare and serve but the oxygen deprivation it does for our bodies is not at all healthy -- more so with toddlers. It is still best to stick with fresh, simple, and the natural state of food.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Andreas is angry

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 24, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Yes, we are experiencing those outbursts and i am preparing for more when we reach the age of terrible 2s six months from now. This post is a take on Ann's Toddler Tantrums.

Andreas was never a challenging baby. When we attend to his needs at that precise moment, he will stop crying/complaining immediately. And because hubby and i raised him alone, we know exactly what he means by those inaudible sounds, hand gestures, crying spells. We were first time parents but somehow we managed to be confident with our parenting skills -- taking cues from Baby Center and What To Expect books.

But of course, no matter how many theories you have read, your child has his own personality and will react differently as what books and theories suggests. But combining mother instincts and readings, here are the ways we handle Andreas' tantrums.

Situation: Our little boy gets negative feelings when (1) we do not allow him to play with that thing (i.e laptop) he soo wanted to tinker with

Solution: I learned this from hubby very early on --provide alternative. Do not scold, shout NOO, or take it away. Simply bring his attention to a favorite toy. These days, Andreas is most interested in his lego, shape sorters, and stacking rings.


Situation: Our little boy gets negative feelings when(2) we do not allow him to play alone on the balcony (because it's hot and dusty),

Solution: No other toy will provide as subsitute for the wide, noisy balcony with a view of cars (which he is most interested) so i offer him a drink. I give a fresh orange juice in a different cup or glass (anything just not his regular cup). I know that it is a rule not to reward your kids with food so i stick with diluted apple juice or anything liquid with a different presentation to make it a real treat.


Situation: Our little boy gets negative feelings when(3) we remove him from the bath tub (he is crazy about waterplay).

Solution: A finished bath is the thing he hates most. And it breaks my heart that it happens everyday. So enter the Barney, Brainy, and Brilliant Baby videos. Before i announce to him bath is over, i ready his clothes and play the video. He will cry when i get him out of the tub but as soon as he hears Barney, he stops complaining. I dress him up easily with his attention glued to the screen.



Andreas and his "owie" (see how he clings tightly on the stuffed dog?)

Situation
: Our little boy gets negative feelings when(4) we go for a long drive or we are stuck in a traffic.

Solution: Does your child have an "owie"? You know that security blanket, or toy that comforts him? Bring it with you. Andreas' "owie" is stuffed brown bulldog from Ikea. When i noticed that he has certain fondness for it, we bought another to stay in the car and a reserved one in case he soils either. Also, the toys (cars and book) in the car stays there. We do not bring them up anymore so he will not be familiar with them --that everytime we travel, he is busy with a surprise toy.

And for those situations where "owie" is not within reach, I rely on my son's favorite ,The Raindrops song. It never fails to soothe him since he was a tiny baby. His face would brighten every time i whisper "standing outside with my mouth open wide. a-aaa-a-aaa-aaa."

The key simply is "knowing" your baby.

One Word Tag

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 24, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I received an Over The Top Blog Award and a tag from dear old blogger friend, Recel of My Written Expression. I already posted the award so now it will only be the taggie. It's been awhile since i received one so this should be fun.

USING ONLY ONE WORD! Copy and change the answers to suit you and pass it on. This is harder than it seems.

1. Where is your cell phone? desk
2. Your hair?
cropped
3. Your mother?
smart
4. Your father?
away
5. Your favorite food? salmon

6. Your dream last night?
none
7. Your favorite drink?
water
8. Your dream/goal? house
9. What room you are in?
office
10. Your hobby?
reading
11. Your fear?
slimy
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years?
Dubai
13. Where were you last night?
Al Ghazal
14. Something that you aren’t?
musician
15. Muffins? Berry
16. Wish list item?
House
17. Where you grew up?
Batanes
18. Last thing you did? laundry
19. What are you wearing? t-shirt
20. Your TV?
LCD
21. Your pets? None
22. Friends?
Lots
23. Your life?
Happy!
24. Your mood?
Thoughful
25. Missing someone? grandparents
26. Car? Fortuner
27. Something you’re not wearing?
slippers
28. Your favorite store?
carrefour
29. Your favorite color?
purple
30. When was the last time you laughed?
morning
31. Last time you cried?
weeks
32. Who will resend this? anybody
33. One place that I go to over and over? Dubai Mall
34. One person w
ho emails me regularly? Betong
35. My favorite place to eat?
Subway

Feel free to snag, ladies!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

weekend snapshot # 50 Happy Father's Day!

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 21, 2009 8 sweets for Kero Links to this post

What Makes a Dad



God took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,

The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle's flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,

The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so,
He called it ... Dad


Happy Father's Day to my Ceasar. Thank you for everything that you are. You are the greatest.

See more Weekend Snapshot here.

toddler meal # 5

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 21, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Here is a dinner i prepared for Andreas.



Supper consists of fresh orange squeeze, rice, and monggo guisado (with tomatoes, pork slices, and spinach). This is actually a favorite ulam for me, so i am not surprised that Andreas like it as much. I had to give him another serving and a little more.

I think that whatever we were eating during our pregnancy years, our babies will like the food as well. Hubby saw to it i had a varied diet from yoghurt, to anything garlicky, biryani, fish, and leafy vegetables. Andreas too is eating all of i mentioned.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Mommy Moments - That's My Dada!

Posted by Kero at Thursday, June 18, 2009 14 sweets for Kero Links to this post
mommy moments

I thank the Lord for my Ceasar who is such a wonderful, loving, generous Dada to our little Andreas. I share with you some of their bonding moments.


Playing "Catch Me If You Can" at Zabeel lawns.


Trip to Carnivale, Dubai Mall


Patiently teaching Andreas to float.


"Look out for Sam the whaleshark!" Atlantis Hotel, The Palm Jumeirah

Hubby always indulges Andreas to whatever he enjoys doing. He would play the piano for him to lul Andreas to sleep, sometimes he will sing their local song, they play lego (to which Andreas enjoys toppling down), the shape sorter, and tinker his car collection. They both enjoy raw carrots, cucumber, and all the juicy fruits. Frankly, i think he got his Dada's eating habits and i am always grateful for that.

Join us for Mommy Moments here.

Food Thought

Posted by Kero at Thursday, June 18, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Literally. I am craving for biryani -- chicken biryani particularly. We used to order home delivery almost every weekend at Jabal Al Noor but with the rising cases of food poisoning, i cannot risk to call. You see, my son is also very fond of biryani.

Anyways, i've been thinking of biryani since last week. But reading Gulf News and the public warning, i am forced to make do with whatever is inside the fridge. So i came out with my very first pizza. Yes i made my own pizza dough. Hubby liked it so i made one again the other day. I will make Pizza Margherita for dinner. And maybe a movie date with hubby. Oh i'm excited about weekend. Also, we are bringing Andreas to his pedia on Saturday for booster vaccine. We haven't been to Belhoul European Hospital for two months!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

45 Lessons in Life

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 17, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Just a gentle reminder for everybody.

Written By
Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer , Cleveland, Ohio

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written.. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:"



1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3.. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. The most important sex organ is the brain.
25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ''In five years, will this matter?".
27. Always choose life.
28. Forgive everyone everything.
29. What other people think of you is none of your business.
30. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
33. Believe in miracles.
34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
37. Your children get only one childhood. (My favorite)
38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.
4 1. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
42. The best is yet to come.
43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
44. Yield.
45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.

**Thankies to Hubby for sharing this to me. Mwah, mwah, mwah!

Toddler Meal # 4

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 17, 2009 2 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Time for another Toddler Meal! Thankies to all visitors for the continued interest.

Here is a breakfast i prepared for my Andreas.



Yes, just freshly squeezed orange juice and a slice of home made carrot cake. My version of the cake includes pineapple tidbits, chopped walnuts, and cream cheese spread (i use Puck brand coz they are always on sale at Union Coop). I will be posting the recipe soon. The marshmallows on top is simply a treat for him -- as usual, the sugar of the cake is regulated. That makes for a meal loaded with vitamin c, carotene, protein, and carbo.

There are days when Andreas will eat plenty. There are days when he will just have three spoonful of the meal. And that is fine with me. Meal time should be fun and i do not believe in forcing them to eat. They know their system better.

I Love Your Blog Award

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 17, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
How chic! Have a look at my award...and this time we are talking French.

Merci to my dear blogger friend, Joanne, for the warm appreciation. To my other blogger friends, hope you can visit her blog at Me, Myself and I.



My turn to pass this fabulous award to:

Gi-Ann of The Second Realm
Algene of The Coffee Chic
Karissa of Things & Thongs

Enjoy the rest of the week, ladies!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Of Cookies & Fishing

Posted by Kero at Monday, June 15, 2009 3 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I got this from my dearest Kayni. I want to repost for my only sister who is celebrating her birthday this month. And that for some reason, no matter how gorgeous and smart, keeps whining about male species. I long to see her not confused hahhaha or in a relationship, at least.

But seriously, the arguments here are soo worth pondering. I know because i lived by some of these rule. For those who consider me lucky for having such a devoted husband, i say all is fair in love. You get what you deserve in this life.

All the single ladies, sit back and read.



Interview with Steve Harvey

1.) Introduction: If a man introduces you as a friend or says your name with no title at all, Steve says you have nothing. "We're very protective. We mark our territory. If a man loves you ... he's willing to profess it. He'll give you a title after a while. You're going to be his lady, his woman, his fiancée, his wife, his baby's mama, something," he says. "If he's introducing you after six months, 'This is ... Oprah,' you should be standing there going, 'This is going nowhere.'

2.) The Plan: Another thing women need to understand, according to Steve, is that every man has a plan. "Men don't come up to you to just talk. We come up to you with a plan," he says. "We're looking across the room at you, and we don't care about your hopes and dreams. We don't care about what your future holds. We saw something we wanted." When a man approaches a woman, Steve says, he already knows what [he] wants from her, but he doesn't know what it will cost. "How much time do you want from me? What your standards? What are your requirements? Because we'll rise to the occasion no matter how high you set the bar if we want to," he says. "The problem is, women have stopped setting the bar high."

3.) The Cookie: Though a woman might want many things from a man, Steve says men only need three things: support, loyalty and sex. Or as Steve calls it, "the cookie." "We've got to have your support. Whatever adventure we're out on, whatever pursuit in life, we need your support. Then we need your loyalty. That's your love. We've got to know that you belong to us," he says. "And we've got to have a cookie. Everybody likes cookies. That's the thing about a cookie. I like oatmeal raisin ... but if you've got vanilla cream, I'll eat that too."

4.) Gone Fishin': Steve says men are like fishermen — but women are actually the ones looking for a good catch. You won't be able to find one, though, until you up your standards. "You've got sports fishermen, and you've got guys out there fishing to eat. You've got guys that are fishing to keep the fish, and you've got guys that are fishing to catch them, unhook them and throw them back," Steve says. "You've got to determine along the way which one of the fish you're going to be."

Without ironclad standards, Steve says you'll always end up back in the dating pool. "You've got to quit lowering your standards," he says. "Set your requirements up front so when a guy hooks you, he has to know this is business." And don't let the man set the pace of the relationship — Steve says it's always the woman who has total control. "With all that power, why do you suddenly relinquish this power just because you want a guy to accept you? That's stupid," he says. "Say: 'Look, if you want to be with me, this is what you got to do. This is what it takes to get to me.'"

5.) When Should You Sleep With The Boyfriend: As an auto plant worker, Steve says he had to wait 90 days to receive benefits — and says the same probation period should apply to dating. "In 90 days they checked me out. They determined if I was easy to work with, if I got along well with others, if I showed up when I said I was going to show up, if I was worthy."Women, Steve says, hold the greatest benefit of all — the cookie — so there's no reason to give it away until you know your man deserves it. "Slow down, ladies," Steve says. "Look, you cannot run us off."

The question now, does Steve make sense?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

weekend snapshot # 49

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 14, 2009 13 sweets for Kero Links to this post


A big, warm hello to my fellow weekenders! Hubby's club was part of the logistics committee during the 111th Philippine Independence Day Celebration. We went to the venue Al Nasr Leisureland as early as 5 a.m. to help decorate and prepare the place. Here is my son trying to take the center stage just before the proper ceremonies start.


Andreas at 111th Philippine Independence Day Celebration, Dubai, UAE

Saturday, we went for a little shopping for summer toys. The chlorinated water of the swimming pool has been drying up our eyes so we decided to buy goggles and a body board for Andreas.


His and Hers Speedo Futura Biofuse

See more weekend snapshot here.

Perky Blogger Award

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 14, 2009 5 sweets for Kero Links to this post
A wonderful start of the week today as i receive another blog award from new blogger friend, Gi-Ann. Have a look:



Thank you so much, Gi-Ann! I really appreciate this kind gesture. My turn to pass this award to my thoughtful blogger friends

Twinkie of Twinkie Calls
Ann of Me, Myself, & Darly
Recel of My Written Expressions

Have a great week ahead, ladies!

Toddler Meal # 3

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 14, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
A blessed Sunday to my visitors! Time for another toddler meal here. I share with you a breakfast i prepared for my soon-to-be 18 months old darling.



Like any busy Mom and househelper, there are days when it is impossible to prepare a decent food for my baby. So i always stock up on instant oatmeal on the cupboard. I started to serve this to Andreas when he was 13 month old. We prefer the brand Jungle Oats because it is not sweet and is iron-fortified. Varied flavors include chocolate, tropical fruit, strawberry & yoghurt, and creamy natural. You can buy these from Spinneys, Al Manama, Al Maya and Lulu Hypermrket.

The freshly squeezed orange juice is a staple on Andreas' meals. I give him one every day since he was able to feed on citrus fruits. Also, I try to give it after intake of iron rich foods for optimal iron absorption.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Mommy Moments - Outdoor Fun

Posted by Kero at Thursday, June 11, 2009 14 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I am posting my Mommy Moments a day earlier this week. Actually, i look forward to joining this meme every week but I am always busy on Fridays with my two boys at home. So from now on, Thursdays are MMs meme over here.

mommy moments

Sometimes we bring him to Bastakiya and walk around watch the Dhow cruise. One afternoon, we chanced upon the Dubai Drums perform and the crowd watching were encouraged to join. Here is my Andreas trying and enjoying beating the drum.



We bring Andreas to parks on cooler days. He enjoys running around, playing with his balls, touching (and eating) the grass, watch the birds, and the other children play. Below is our pic at Safa Park for Andreas' first swing ride



Then we hit the beach on warmer days - when sun is bearable for the skin. My son, loves, loves the water!



Now that it's summer time and beach parks are impossible to visit, we bring him up early mornings and evening to the rooftop to enjoy the swimming pool.



Join us for Mommy Moments here

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

beyond books and cars

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 10, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Ooh, i am blogging late today. We are off to Dubai Festival City tonight for hubby's club meeting so i had to cook supper early. I also tried baking a good 'ol southern cake, the Red Velvet. I think that i shall never fall for country music, which hubby is a big fan of, so i am making it up to him by serving food with a touch of country. Boy i might even want to learn how to make country bread haha. That is marriage. You learn to compromise.

Anyway, i didn't have half of what the recipe was asking. I had to do with substitutes for the ingredients but still i think the cake turned out pretty well. For the most part, it's not sweet so that is a big hooray for hubby. I still need to improve it though, so when i got everything okay, i shall be posting the recipe.

Andreas is about to wake up anytime and my furious hands on the keyboard will not make him asleep any longer. But before i go, i just want to share that finally, finally, other than reading board books, steering wheels, and car tyres, Andreas turned his attention to his stacking rings. For a couple of days now, he's been playing and playing with it even showing off whenever Dada arrives from work.

Have a look at these pics.


We bought these stacking rings when he was six months old


At 18 months, it's his current favorite toy.

I give credit to hubby for patiently showing Andreas how to stack up the rings. Thank you, darling. You are always a wonderful father. Mwaah!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Old-Fashioned Lasagne

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, June 09, 2009 1 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Our family is a big fan of pasta. On our first months (probably year) here in Dubai, pasta recipes were always present on our weekend menu. Naturally,when i got the chance to bake, I tried making lasagna when i read a recipe from a celebrity magazine. It came out right the first time i did it, but i found it a little salty for my liking. Plus I wanted more vegetables with it. I tried, and tried again, adjusting the ingredients, until i was satisfied with the taste - down to the crunchy vegetables.

I'm thinking of making this again over the coming weekend. Maybe we will have visitors since it is Freedom Day celebration, maybe not, since everybody will be busy at Al Nasr Leisureland. Nevertheless, I want to be ready -- and yes to satisfy my craving too hihi. I've been wanting to cook since i bought that box of Barilla last week.

Old-Fashioned Lasagne
Serves 8-10



For the Meat Sauce
200 g chopped bacon
2 onions, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 cup sliced onion springs
2 sticks celery, trimmed and chopped
400 g beef mince
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp Worchestershire sauce
freshly ground black pepper
375 ml full-fat milk
40 g butter
400 ml beef stock
400 g diced tomatoes
125 ml tomato paste
160 g Parmesan cheese

For the White Sauce
125 g butter
100 g plain flour
1.3 ltr full fat hot milk
salt
freshly ground black pepper

Here's how

1. To make the meat sauce, fry the bacon in a large wok. Add the onions and garlic. Fry until softened but not browned. Add carrots and celery, sweat for 10 minutes.

2. Add beef mince, soy sauce, Worchestershire sauce, and a good grinding of pepper. Fry on medium heat until browned.

3. Add milk and butter and cook to reduce by half. Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and add the beef stock. Simmer uncovered for at least an hour.

4. To make white sauce, melt butter in a pan. Add flour and stir to make a paste. Leave to bubble until really dry. Gradually stir in the hot milk. Allow to boil then stir until sauce thickens. Check seasoning and remove from heat.

5. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Grease 10 x 14in oven proof dish. Spoon white sauce on the base. Lay pasta sheets. Spread a layer of meat sauce. Sprinkle 1 tbsp green bell pepper, 1 tbsp yellow bell pepper, 1 tbsp spring onions, and Parmesan cheese. Top with white sauce and layer again pasta sheets. Repeat until you used all the ingredients finishing with white sauce on top and the last of Parmesan.

6. Bake for 45-60 minutes until the top is bubbling. Don't worry about the bubbling over the sides of the dish. This gives the look of an authentic lasagne.

Happy cooking!

10 Favorite Things To Do During "Me" Time

Posted by Kero at Tuesday, June 09, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
A sunny Tuesday everyone! Thank you to hubby because he makes sure i still get to have "me" time. These are the things I enjoy doing most when i get some time alone.

1. A long, fragrant bubble bath. (I am liking vanilla sugar these days)
2. Cuddle with a good book.
3. Bake desserts.
4. Try out a new recipe
5. Visit a flea market or a floral shop.
6. Go shopping!
7. Watch fashion network and home shopping.
8. Do girlie stuff (home facial, mix n' match clothes)
9. Blog and surf the net
10. Take a long walk.

Join us for Ten on Tuesday here.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Toddler Meal # 2

Posted by Kero at Monday, June 08, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Here is a dinner I prepared for Andreas.



There is a Tiffany Kiddie Cocktail (an anniversary give-away when we visited Deira City Center), yellow rice, and slices of kiwi for dessert. The protein for those who are asking, comes from the yellow rice. It is actually a one-dish meal. It has slices of pork, raisins, a dash of lemon and the generous turmeric has antiseptic properties. It even has cloves and cinnamon bark renowned for its curing properties. The dish has been a favorite for my little boy that i actually had to give him another serving.

I diluted the cocktail juice with water - half and half portion. Even when i give him apple juice, i always add water and he doesn't seem to mind. Andre also finished the kiwi slices. At first he did not like the fruit - no matter how i try to present it in shapes. Then one time, i sliced a leftover from the fridge, and he munched them like he was eating some apple. The trick i realized was he sometimes like the fruit served chilled.

*Feeding Tip
Just because your child declined the first serving doesn't mean he will never like the certain food. Let it rest, have patience and try giving it again maybe after a week, or even a month. It would be nice if he eats what ever body else is eating on the table.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

a music spectacle

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 07, 2009 4 sweets for Kero Links to this post
No we did attend any concert as my title might suggest, but we've been watching the Dubai Fountain perform for three nights now and I swear hubby has memorized Baba Yetu.

Thursday night, we headed to Dubai Mall for a visit and purchase at Plug-Ins. It was still early so we decided to watch the fountain. It will be our first time to see it perform at night. We went to Soukh Al Bahar for a different view. Oohh it was magnificent! Maybe that is even an understatement. I wanted to cry watching it perform. The lights, the graceful sway, the people in awe, the experience was simply overwhelming. Maybe there is the tallest building in the world behind it, the world's largest shopping mall beside it, but the Dubai Fountain is a star in its own right. Friday and Saturday, we went there at six in the evening and really, all the roads lead to Dubai Mall. It's like people go to watch Britney Spears strut her stuff! Best of all it's free. Really, i don't mind if there is donation box around corners of the lake. I'd gladly drop a dirham everytime we visit. And that is like every night!

Watch the video below if you have the time. I'm sure you will agree.



For those who are planning to watch it, the best view is the Soukh Al Bahar. Do not go near the back entrance of Dubai Mall because you'll be dripping wet after performance. But then, that is part of the thrill.

weekend snapshot # 48 - Andreas' Silly Moment

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 07, 2009 18 sweets for Kero Links to this post


Ooops. Mommy is busy!



More weekend snapshots here.

kiddie choco-berry muffin

Posted by Kero at Sunday, June 07, 2009 0 sweets for Kero Links to this post
Happy Sunday everyone! We had a great, relaxed weekend but before anything else, Thankies to all who appreciated my Toddler Meal post. As promised, i will share the inexpensive choco-berry muffins i made for my son. I warn you though that it has really a kiddie taste - not cakey. My son loved it and it really makes a great finger food. I even pack them as snacks when we go out.

The picture below are the two main ingredients i used. Yes, use drinking chocolate for flavor because i find it cheaper than baking chocolate. As for the strawberries, i most often use fresh frozen. If you are going to use fresh strawberries, make sure they are fully ripe.



Ingredients
100 g Cadbury drinking chocolate
150 g flour
150 fresh frozen strawberries, diced
80 g unsalted cold butter
1 tbsp baking powder
1 large egg
175 low fat milk
50 g caster sugar

Here's how

1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees C. Grease a 12 hole muffin tin.

2. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients first. Then grate the cold butter and add to the flour and chocolate mixture. Mix all ingredients using a fork. Make sure the butter is thoroughly coated.

3. Using a hand blender, beat the egg and milk together. Pour into the choco-butter mixture. Continue to mix using a fork. The mixture does not need to be smooth.

4. Add the strawberries and gently fold in.

5. Spoon the mixture to the muffinpan. Scoop around two-table spoon for each case. Bake for 25 minutes until risen and springy to touch.

Happy cooking!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Toddler Meal # 1

Posted by Kero at Wednesday, June 03, 2009 6 sweets for Kero Links to this post
I do not give any vitamins to my son. And he has never been really sick the kind that you seek your pedia's opinion. The only fever he had, aside from vaccine related, was at 10 months old when we tried to soak him at Al Mamzar Beach. It was October then and we thought the sea water was warm enough. He enjoyed it immensely but he suffered mild fever the following day. I gave him tylenol drops and went for a two-hour drive to enjoy Al Ain Zoo.

I purely breastfed Andreas for six months. I gave credit to that for his health and appetite on the succeeding days. When he was finally weaned at nine months, i gave credit to his meals for staying healthy and very active. A lot of friends and people ask what i feed him or how i get him to eat those squash or raw carrots. Some are just like me - a first time Mommy. Some even went to buy costly recipe books purposely for babies and toddlers. No, i do not have a degree on nutrition. I simply follow my instinct, listen to hubby's opinion, and see what my toddler needs.

So from today, i will be sharing a picture of Andreas' meals and snacks for two reasons. First, so when my son gets to read this, he will know how we lovingly tried to take care of him and that he truthfully chewed and swallowed those spinachs. Secondly, for those first time Mommies who sometimes get loss what to feed their precious little ones. It will be filed under Toddler Meals for those interested to come back and read.

Lunch for Andreas


Before

There is yoghurt, apple, homemade chocoberry muffin, and water. (see those tiny hands? he can't get to get them on his food!) Where is the rice, you may ask since this is his lunch. We try to limit his rice intake (hubby says he has plenty of time to eat rice in the future hihi). Sometimes, i give it to him every other day. If there are other source of carbohydrate, we give him that. For this meal, it's the chocolate-strawberry muffin (recipe soon to follow). I baked it myself and regulated the sugar and the chocolate. For the record, it is only this month i let Andreas have a taste of mild chocolate. I want to delay introducing sweets for as long as possible because both hubby and I's families has a history of diabetes.


After


*Feeding Tip
Make meals attractive and serve in colors and shapes.

 

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