Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Where in the World : {7 hours in} Siena, Italy

One of the best 7 hours of my life was spent in this medieval city in the Tuscan region .....

... I can't help but fell in love with this colorful town - the narrow passages leading to the Piazza del Campo, the Duomo di Siena with its black and white pillars is a great masterpiece, the mouth watering prosciutto ham from the pizzicheria enjoyed with a glass of Chianti ... ah, la dolce vita!

Shared with : Weekly Top Shot

Monday, April 22, 2013

17 Years after ....

 .... white lace and promises...

....love so clear never blurred. No trace of sadness, always with gladness. I do.

Thank you dear for 17 wonderful wedded bliss!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Cooking without Recipe : Linguini with Mussels in Black Beans Sauce

I love cookbooks. Let me correct that. My husband said I am addicted to cookbooks! The funny thing is, most of the time, I find myself cooking without following a recipe. I love inventing dishes in the same way that I love following already tested recipes. Like this one time when the only thing left in our freezer was a box of cooked New Zealand mussels. I didn't have time to go out and buy something for dinner so I came up with this....

I sauteed 3 cloves of garlic, medium size red onion and 2 thumb size fresh ginger (thinly sliced) in about 1/4 cup olive oil (you can use less). I added 2 tablespoons of  Lee Kum Kee black bean garlic sauce, salt and crushed red peppercorns, a pinch of sugar and about 5 tablespoons water. I added the mussels and simmered for a minute or two in low heat. Once done {when sauce was reduced a little bit}I added the still hot linguini noodles {which I cooked according to package directions}and coated it with the sauce. I then garnished the pasta with chopped coriander leaves. At dinner time, I paired it with dry Riesling.

Happy cooking!

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Morning of This and an Evening of That

Facing east while standing on my front yard at 7AM, this was what my camera captured.

 On the same spot, but this time facing west, this was the view at 7PM

I asked myself a number of times why I insist on living in the suburb and travel an hour to go to work. These are some of the reasons why..... nature and serenity.... I'm afraid I can't find them in the city anymore.

Have a fantastic weekend!

Shared with: Weekly Top Shot

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Prayer

sometime I can't help but ask why people can be so heartless ....

Sunday, April 14, 2013


We just had snow and ice storm a couple of days ago. Some are saying that summer will just be a dream this year. I am not taking my chances ... I have completed my list of things I intend to do this summer .... hot and sunny or otherwise, I am so ready for summer!

1.  Plant lavender in the backyard.
2.  Throw at least 2 afternoon BBQ parties
3.  Play beach volleyball
4.  Take a road trip to Chicago
5.  Design 10 various occasions greeting cards
6.  Sleep in a tent
7.  Attend food festivals
8.  Try/invent new recipes
10. Bake bread
11. Go to Ottawa for the tulip festival
12. Learn a new contemporary Christian music
13. Read 5 books
14. Donate to food bank
15. Indulge in a couple's massage at St. Anne's Spa
16. Have an afternoon tea for two
17. Go to a flea market
19. Try a new tea flavor
20. Put on nail art

May the force be with me!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Dreaming of Farm Life

One thing that is common with my bucket list and that of my hubby is to live in a farm where we can raise chickens and lambs and grow lemon trees and herbs (lots and lots of of therm!). Maybe one day. For now, we can always drive to farm houses not far from where we are and dream of having these ... up close and personal ....

... maybe. one. day.

Shared with : Rurality Blog Hop

Monday, April 8, 2013

Bites and Nibbles @ Momofuku Noodle Bar

I went to Momofuku Noodle Bar in November last year - three months after it opened its door to Torontonians. There were lots of hype about the place so I thought it was worth traveling from Ajax to give their ramen a try.

I arrived just in time for lunch so the place was already in full swing. I was seated right away by a friendly staff  in one of the communal tables and in no time, another staff came to introduce the items on the menu.

I settled for these with much anticipation .....

The pork bun was truly a gustatory delight - soft and light bun welcoming the flavours of the perfectly cooked pork belly. The hoisin sauce and green onion slices kicked it up a notch. I paired this treat with the Momofuku ramen which was a dissappontment. I find the broth salty and not hot enough {sorry, I like mine hot - ramen or otherwise *-*}. For somebody who grew up in Asia where ramen is a staple food, this one didn't meet my expectations. I will go back and try other things on the menu - just another reason to have pork bun - on the side!

190 University Ave. Toronto

Momofuku Noodle Bar on Urbanspoon

Saturday, April 6, 2013

We {heart} nature : Niagara Falls State Park (USA}

Taking photos of the majestic Niagara Falls  is one of my favorite things to do - every season is different. The view of the falls is always perfect any time of the year from the Canadian side of the boarder. That said,  I wonder what is there to see on the US side.

Last week, hubby and I went hiking at Niagara Falls State Park in New York and finally I saw what I have been missing all these years!

The view from the observation deck is impressive and I was able to really get closer to the falls. The powerful sound of cascading water is amazing . What impressed me more is the totality of park. I have to admit that the park is much better than the Canadian side simply because there are more trees, hiking trails and benches where one can really appreciate nature. No tourist traps too {if I may add}.

We hiked along the rapids - oh, the sweet smell of soil fresh from winter hibernation and the mist in the air - spring has truly sprung!

There are more to see like the the Rock of Ages and Cave of the Winds that are closed for winter. We will be back in late spring for another nature adventure!

Share with : Weekly Top Shot

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Chasing Sunset

We were driving on our way back to our hotel in Niagara Falls when we saw this .... yes, the sun was beginning to "retire" so I grab my camera and asked my husband to drive slowly ....

.... so I can capture these....

The sky's dramatic transformation when the day is ready to retire is amazing! Another reason to thank the Lord at the end of the day!

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