May 30, 2013

Must-Haves : Kitchen Ingredients Checklist

This was based on my experiences during my student years.
When I tried to feed myself (and 5 other mouths) (friends I mean) on a tight budget, while avoiding processed food (which turned out to be more expensive too (!) than cooking on my own), and trying varied recipes like a horse out of the gate, since then we could cook anything we wanted to eat (!) :D, while trying not to gain too much weight.

The weight part was the hardest one.
Because we ended up cooking and eating too many since we enjoyed them so much.

So it might work best for student friendly recipes,... and penny pinchers.
Or just someone with a sensibly tight budget.
Oh well! Basically, and hopefully, everyone!

Especially those who are expecting to stay and cook on their own for the first time. :)

Here are the list of ingredients which I must had at all times, lasted seems like forever without spoiling, will be used to it's max, then easy and cheaper to replace (as they are common, duh!), and ready to be made a thousand different recipes at any time
Okay, a thousand might sound a little too much.

In the cupboard, room temperature:
  1. Main star : 
    1. Rice
    2. Dried pasta
    3. Cornflakes
    4. Oats
    5. Flour (self-raising / plain)
  2. Seasoning : 
    1. Salt
    2. Black pepper
    3. White sugar
  3. Herbs (dried) : 
    1. "Italian"mix
    2. (Optional : ground cumin, ground turmeric -- one day when we craved curries ..)
  4. Oil : 
    1. Canola (largest bottle, most economical, least suspicious looking)
    2. Olive (extra virgin) (very small one)
  5. Ingredient (fresh) : 
    1. Garlic bulbs
    2. Onions
    3. Potatoes
  6. Drink : 
    1. Chocolate powder / tea / coffee,
    2. Powdered milk
  7. Sauce (extra small) : 
    1. Oyster
    2. Fish
    3. Sweet soy
    4. (Optional : white rice vinegar (Mirin), teriyaki sauce (Kikoman) -- well, these might be because my housemates loved Japanese dishes)
  8. Other : 
    1. Tinned fish (brine / water / oil)
    2. Maple / golden syrup
    3. (Optional : Nori -- for sushi of course!)

In the fridge:
  1. Canola margarine
  2. Grated ginger in a jar
  3. Cooking chocolate
  4. Eggs
  5. Carrots
  6. Tomatoes

In the freezer:
  1. Frozen mixed vegetables
  2. Frozen berries (smallest commercial bag available)
  3. Plain vanilla ice cream (BIG tub)

I omitted some ingredients due to their shelf lifespan and easy-storage-inability,
and price.

They would be nice-to-have for me, but not essential, and are easily replaced with something else more seasonal (e.g. good vinegar to lemon).
Well they might not be exactly the same, so ...
If it is with a tight budget, geez...

So ... How do you agree with the list, what are in yours? Let me know.

I'll list the essential kitchen utensils in another entry ;).

Lots of Love,

May 23, 2013

Ellie the Elephant

Ellie the elephant was a toy owned by a little boy named Jerry.
Ellie’s skin was made out of plain pale yellow cotton cloth, and she had beady eyes that were made of what could have been a very tiny solid black marble that was cut into halves.
Ellie’s tail was made of what looked like a piece of white cord string, and Ellie wore a puffy little laced dress.
Nothing more was special about Ellie, except that whenever Jerry went, he brought Ellie along.

Ellie was so proud of herself to be Jerry’s favourite toy, and she kept boasting about it to her friends.
Her friends had reminded her not to behave so smugly, yet she just would not stop bragging.
‘Jerry likes me so much, today we went to the park, and he kept telling me stories all along the way’
‘You should not be so proud of yourself, Ellie. It becomes quite annoying,’ said Tom the wooden stallion.
‘For one thing, it is bad enough that Jerry does not play with us as much as he plays with you,’ squeaked Rudy the grey haired wheeled mouse with a long pink rubber tail from the corner of Jerry’s bedroom that night.
‘Aren’t you afraid that someday he might find another toy that he will prefer more than you?’ asked Olive the puffy white owl wisely from the toy box.
‘You are all just jealous that Jerry prefers me more than all of you,’ replied Ellie from the bed where she sat.
‘Olive has a point, Ellie,’ said a quiet voice from the shelf.
A little teddy bear was speaking, his right eye was missing, and his left ear was a little lopsided. ‘Haven’t I told you I was his favourite toy until he got you for his birthday present?’
But before Ellie could reply anything, Jerry came in to the room. ‘Ellie, let’s go to bed, we shall sleep in Mum’s room tonight,’ Jerry said sleepily and headed for the door holding Ellie’s hand in his. Ellie beamed to her friends.

The next morning, Jerry woke up with a surprise.
‘Good morning, sweetheart, we have a surprise for you ...’ his mother’s voice woke him up.
‘Mummy! Daddy!’ Jerry jumped out of the bed, and in his excitement knocked Ellie to fall through the small gap in between the bed and the bedside table.
‘Open up,’ said Jerry’s father handling a box wrapped with red ribbon.
Jerry opened the box and beamed at a brand new train set complete with little trees, sign posts, and its long lane that he could build at will.

‘Thank you!’ he leapt forwards and hugged his parents.
‘We think that you have been old enough now to be able to construct such train set,’ said Jerry’s father.

All along that day, Jerry was so busy playing with his new train set. So was he the next day, and the day after, and the day after, and perhaps even months after that day.

Ellie did not know how long she has been trapped in that dark corner under Jerry’s parent’s bed for it had felt like a very long time. All she knew was that Jerry had seemed to forget her. He never did come to look for her, and she was so sad and lonely.
Her friends were right all along, and she felt really bad. Somehow Ellie was also grateful that she had been trapped in Jerry’s parent’s bedroom so that she could not hear what her friends might say now.

One day, after what felt like a very long time, a little hand came and touched Ellie’s head, and Ellie felt that she was lifted at last!

She hoped it was Jerry, yet Ellie then heard a voice she did not recognised, ‘Mummy, what is this?’ came a little girl’s voice.
When Ellie was turned around, Ellie then saw that the little girl was Jerry’s little sister, Jemima. She seemed older than the last time Ellie saw her.

‘Oh, it’s your brother’s old elephant. I thought it’s been lost for years. It’s filthy, dear, where did you find it? Let’s give it a bath, shall we?’

Then Ellie was bathed and her dress was washed and ironed. Ellie was clean once more.

However, what makes Ellie the happiest was that now she had a new friend, she was now Jemima’s favourite toy.

Jerry also seen her now and then now, and he did not appear to forget Ellie at all.
Yet, never again would Ellie brag about herself to her toy friends, and her toy friends liked her even more now. Even Tom the stallion was nicer to her now.
Ellie was then the happiest little elephant in the whole world wide.

Next Story:
"Three Cupcakes for Michael, and a Chocolate Bar for Andie">>

From "Ellie the Elephant, and Other Stories", view Table of Contents View Other Books on the Shelf

"Ellie the Elephant and Other Stories"

Table of Content

  1. "Ellie the Elephant"
  2. "Three Cupcakes for Michael, and a Chocolate Bar for Andie"
  3. ... (to be continued, August 12, 2013) :)

Welcoming Charlotte the Classic Girl!

Meet Charlotte!

She will be keeping all the stories (and books) in the "Classic" category,

The stories she keeps:
  • "Ellie the Elephant, and Other Stories"
    1. "Ellie the Elephant"
    2. "Three Cupcakes for Michael, and a Chocolate Bar for Andie"
    3. ... (to be continued, August 12, 2013) :)

May 21, 2013

About This: "Ellie the Elephant and Other Stories"

The first "book" on the "shelf" of my "Children Stories" tab will be here soon! Very soon! :D

The first "book" will be titled "Ellie the Elephant and Other Stories", as said, and the first story of it will be, guess what, "Ellie the Elephant"! :P

It was written for a best friend of mine back then, who happens to have this fascination for elephants (the stuffed animals and the real heavy plant-eating mammal with thick skin?).

Also, it is the one that I've been working on on its illustration for the past months as I wrote in my "Up and Coming" section, which is now 100% completed!

So happy to tell that it is finally done, and ... :D remember when I told you I will be telling you when the actual story will be up? Well, wait for it, as it will be up in 2 days from now (on May 23)!

With the first story of the first "book" up, "Classic-Charlotte-the-assistant" will also be clickable, and, this first "book" will have 5 stories in total in it!

Sincerely hope this will be enjoyable for all ages too.

Happily yours, :D

May 09, 2013

Learning to Blog


Hi guys,

so... apparently, I have been secretly planning to post a new video every week ;p (shhh... don't tell anyone). So yeah, that included last week and this week.

Honest! I have had something prepared that I have been working on for at least a month, and I was pretty proud of.

Here's a clue, something to do with a bedroom, and a sloth. ;)

However, last week, I got,...well admittedly, a bit down :). In summary, I became not sure again of whether the thing that I'm doing, this, has any value at all to anyone. Because it does feel like talking to a brick wall sometimes.
Well, there is a reason to this actually, an actual 'something' that triggered this thought in me, but, I might tell it in another post. :)

Yes, it was fast to say that after only (even less than) a month! Such champion mentality! :P

In the end, however (!), it also hit me, that it is hard, it is hard to start something and learn something new. Well at least to me, that's the way I know it so far.

Also, it got me thinking, even though sometimes it is oh-so-very-amazing to have a known audience (or friends!), if you love and want to create something and take pleasure in the process of creating something creative (or writing, or video making, or pitiful doodling in my case), then you just have to do it.
Just for the sake of creating. Just for the sake of being creative. Just because you love it.

So if anyone is facing the same situation, let's hold hands and hold on and just keep being creative... and dear ladies and gentlemen, that is exactly what I decided to do... I'm going to keep doing what I have been doing for a very long time now *self-directed-sarcasm* hehe, and I do always wish and hope and pray that sometime, somewhere, somehow, I can make someone's day a brighter day.

I'm still working on my latest video, so it might take several more days.

But! I did not completely stopped working on things, since now... if you haven't noticed, in my "UP AND COMING" section somewhere around there --->,
my "Ellie the Elephant" progress is now 99%!

Woohoo! Took me a really long while, but now, at least very shortly, probably next week, will tell you when exactly, the "Children Stories" section up top will have it's first entry! :D

Also in another note...

My video was supposed to be uploaded on Cinco de Mayo, so... happy belated Cinco de Mayo!
Aren't Mexican food such delish!

Lots of love,

Please watch my latest video if you haven't, and please SUBSCRIBE! :D Thanks a lot! *bow*