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My Cooking Journey #14: Lotus Root Soup, Stir-fry Broccoli

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

I have some leftover black beans from the Black Bean Soup I made previously. I happened to see lotus root at the supermarket and decided to cook a lotus root soup with black beans. Since the black beans were not enough, I add some peanuts too. After simmering it for about 3 hours, I got a pot of nutritious soup for the family.

I also stir-fry a broccoli using the Bone Stock instead of water. Using the bone stock instead of water gives the dish a more flavourful taste. Since I used onion and mushroom, I didn't add anymore salt. But I did add some oyster sauce, because mushrooms with oyster sauce tastes great! Big J even requested for the sauce from the broccoli to mix with his rice because the sauce is sweet from the onion and the bone stock.


Lotus Root Soup

Lotus Root
Black beans
Peanuts
Pork bones

1. Soak the black beans and peanuts overnight.
2. Blanch the pork bones in a pot of boiling water. This helps to removes the scum and blood.
3. Drain away the water and wash the bones.
4. Put everything into a pot and top with water.
5. Bring to a boil for about 15 min. 
6. Turn the fire down to a simmer and let it simmer for 3 hours. 
7. You may add salt for taste. Serve.



Stir-fry Broccoli

Broccoli
Onion
Mushrooms
Garlic
Oyster Sauce

1. Heat up oil in pan and fry onion till soften and fragrant.
2. Add in garlic and fry till fragrant.
3. Add in mushroom and stir fry.
4. Add in broccoli and fry a while.
5. Add in 2 tablespoons of the Jelly Bone Stock. It will melt in the pan.
6. Add in oyster sauce and cover to let it simmer a while.
7. You may add salt for taste. Serve.


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SuperMom Carnival 2015

Monday, 23 March 2015

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Embracing Motherhood

Friday, 20 March 2015

When I was still single, people asked 'When are you going to get a boyfriend?'

When I got a boyfriend, people asked 'When do you want to get married?'

When we got married, people asked 'When do you want to have a child?'

So came Big J. Then people start asking 'When do you want to have a second child?'


Then came Small J. Of course, people start asking 'You going to try for a third one? A girl perhaps?'


Well, maybe not in the near future. I am enjoying being a Mother to my two boys.


I remember the day when the stick showed a '+'. We were elected! It was so amazing just thinking about a life growing inside of me. It was a blessing to know that I have someone to accompany me wherever I go, whatever I do and being there with me for 24/7. This amazing feeling lasted for 38 weeks.

Then on the special day, he decided to make his way out. The pain and fear of birthing, I still remember till this day. But this doesn't stop me from going through it for the second time. I'm sure I won't mind if the situation calls for me to go again for the third or fourth time.

It is not easy being a Mom, especially to two boys, two very active boys who are always full of energy. Each day is mostly spent chasing after them and shouting off instructions to them. On some days, they will be giving me so much headache that I wish the day will pass faster. But who knows, in a flash, the first born is already four years old and the second born is coming to two soon!

So, despite all the challenges, what makes me want to be a Mom?

Them calling me Mummy. Yes, it still twitches my heart everytime they call me.

Being able to enjoy their smiles and laughters, their hugs and kisses is also the best gift they could give me. 

There's also the eye contact that we have. Everytime I look into their eyes, I feel so mesmerized by them. 

Every night, while I lay on the bed, watching them sleeping peacefully makes me feel thankful for each and every day spent with them. 

I am embracing my Motherhood. How about you?

**********


This is part of a blog train hosted by Dominique from Dominique's Desk. Join us as we share our thoughts on Embracing Motherhood.


Next on the blog train is Ting, a Stay Home Mom of two active boys, who believes that everything happens for a reason. She believes she can find miracles everywhere if she looks closely. :) She blogs at Miracule, about her experiences on family, motherhood, homemaking, home-teaching, breastfeeding and things that can keep herself from turning into a yellow-faced wife.

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Wordless Wednesday: Random Shots at East Coast Park

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Brought the boys to East Coast Park for some riding and sand play. It was Big J's birthday. All thanks to my Sis who drives us all the way there.

My smiley boy

Why so fierce darling?

The sand is very hot!

Flying sand

Guidance

Leaf

**********


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My Cooking Journey #13: Bone Stock

Monday, 16 March 2015

I first heard of Bone Stock or rather, collagen bone stock, from Wokking Mum. It was some time ago that she posted a video of her home-made collagen stock and the wibbly wobbly makes me so tempted to try it out. 


But since I was still working then and seldom cook, I didn't try it out. This also reminds me of the Bijin Nabe (美人锅) from Tsukada Nojo, which is always having long queue.

Now that I am no longer working, I need to cook for Big J and myself when we come back home from his lessons. As I do not have much time to cook up a storm, I want to cook simple dishes for the two of us. Having the bone stock ready in the fridge is a very good time saver.

This is how my jelly bone stock turned out.


I use this to cook simple dishes such as stir-fry pasta, udon soup, stir-fry vegetables, porridge etc. Just simply add in a tablespoon or two into the dishes during cooking and it will add flavour to them. Since the bone stock was not seasoned, you might still need to season your dishes, depending on the other ingredients you are using too. 




This is how I prepared my bone stock. Original recipe from Wokking Mum.

Bone Stock

Ingredients:
Pork bones
Chicken feet
Water

1. Boil a pot of water and blanch the pork bones and chicken feet. 
2. Drain and wash the bones. 
3. Put the bones into a fresh pot of water. The water should be just covering the bones.
4. Bring it to a boil and then lower the fire to a simmer. The smallest fire you can go.
5. Let it simmer over the stove for at least 5 hours. The longer the better. 
6. As it simmer, you will see scum forming on the surface. Skim these away so you can achieve a clear stock.
7. Sieve out the bones and leave the stock to cool. Store in fridge or freezer.

You can use any kind of bones as you wished. As a money saving tips, you can save up the bones from the roast chicken or any bone parts that you do not need and use them for this. Blanching helps to removes the blood and scums from the bones and this in an important step in achieving a clear and whitish soup base. 

For storage, you can store them in the freezer, which can last up to 1 month. Remember to freeze them in quantity that you will usually use, so that it is easier to take them out. You can also store them in the fridge, in which the stock will become a jelly-like state. This is good for keeping for about a week. 

I did a Google search of the benefits of bone stock and I am amazed that it actually have lots of benefits as shown here, here and here. I'm not sure how true are these but I am very sure it did save me lots of time when I need to prepare something within a short period of time. And it is definitely healthier than using store-bought stocks.


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Four. Fun. Fantastic.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Big J turns four! I still can't accept the fact that he is such a big boy now. But in my heart, he will always be my baby, like how I still call him 'baby' occasionally.


He is much more understanding and is better able to listen to our instructions, although he still has his occasional meltdowns. However, he needs more improvement in his writing and reading skills. Compared to his peers, his colouring and writing is poor and he still can't read now. Blame it on us being too lazy to do any learning or reading with him. 

Anyway, on his birthday, we went to the beach. He loves riding his Cruzee bike and the park is a good place for him to do his riding. His balancing is quite good and is able to lift up his legs while riding. He always has this very serious look when he is riding.


He also enjoyed himself on the beach. He used to hate sand but now he's alright with playing with the sand. I think it is quite calming for him as he can sit there quietly to enjoy the feel of the sand.


Back at home, we had a small celebration for him. He choose this Superman cake. The difference this year is, he is able to sing the whole birthday song himself and to cut the cake all by himself.



Kor Kor, your saliva is coming out

A big hug for DiDi

Of course, our family photo

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Do You Judge?

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

"The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially... hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented... and then issues a ruling on the matter at hand..." - Souce: Wikepedia

But how often have we judged others based on only our point of view? How often have we judged others without first finding out the reasons behind? How often have we judged other unfairly

Many, many times. There are so many newsfeed on the news and social media of which many people are simply throwing their judgements heedlessly. 

When you see a child rolling on the floor screaming and crying, what is your first judgement? That the parents are doing a bad job? That the child is a spoil-brat? Why is the parent not doing anything to stop the child? Is there something wrong with the child?

In many cases, people starts to gossip among themselves and even with the strangers standing next to them. They start drawing their own imaginations and adding in many information which might not be true. They start finger pointing and shaking their heads. And not forgetting the 'tsk, tsk, tsk'. For some, they might not say anything or do anything, but you know they are secretly saying or thinking something to themselves.

I judged. Pre-children and post-children. Although I try hard not to judge, I sometimes still do the silent judge.

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged" - Matthew 7:1

That's what happened to me. I judged and now it's my turn to be judged.

Big J suddenly ran off from me, dangerously towards the road. 'Oh... that mom is so irresponsible. How could she just let her boy run off? It's so dangerous.'

Me giving 10 months old Small J fries and ice-cream. 'That's so unhealthy. Why is the mom so lazy to prepare proper food for the child?'

Big J taking over other children's toys, bike, scooter. 'Hey, you should control your child. He's so rude.'

Small J decided to lose himself and tried to roll on the floor of the bus, screaming and crying throughout the whole bus journey. During the struggle, he hit himself against the floor. '小姐, 不要这样. 小孩不可以丢的. (Miss, don't throw your child.)' 'Aiyo, why he keeps crying.' 'What's the mom doing?'


Judging is painful. It makes the person being judged feel bad and embarrassed. It makes her think that she is doing something wrong, that she is not a good parent. It will also makes the person throwing the judgement feel bad when he/she is in the same situation, someday.

So what do you do when a situation happens and it is so tempting to pass your judgement? DO NOTHING. THINK NOTHING. You can smile. Or you can ask the people around you to stop judging. If it is a dangerous situation, you can help but don't throw advice.

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Feeling Momazing

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Do you remember...

... the first time your child rolls over and started crawling? I remember.

... the first time your child called out 'Ma Ma' or 'Ba Ba'? I remember.

... the first time your child took his/her first little step? I remember.

... the first time your child ran towards you and gave you a big big hug? I remember.

Each of these moments, I felt so elated. I am also grateful that both Js are growing well and achieving their milestones.

This is the feeling of Momazing!


#MOMAZING is that magical moment when your child surprises you with a milestone they achieve for the first time and you feel a powerful mix of emotions - pride at their flourishing development, and reassurance that you are doing a great job as a mum. - Scott's



Looking at how Small J has grown from a small little baby to a healthy toddler now, it is enough to make me feel #momazing everyday.


This is Small J on one of his recent morning walk. He can climb up and down the steps steadily, can run after birds, and can even jump up and down excitedly. He can also say 'bird', 'lee (leaves)', 'ball', 'cat', 'walk' as he points out to them. He is also generous with his 'hi' and 'bye', smiling cheerfully to everyone. I can't wait to see more of his milestones and to enjoy that momazing feeling again.

With the goodness of Vitamin A and Vitamin D that support kids' immune system, and Omega-3 (DHA) that supports brain health, one tablespoon of Scott’s Emulsion every day can help to create strong foundations of growth for your child so they keep on achieving those amazing leaps and you keep feeling #momazing.

I will leave you with this video from Scott's. It is quite touching and I brought tears to my eyes the first time I watched this.



Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Scott's. No monetary compensation was involved. All opinions are 100% mine. 

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