Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Happy Happy New Year!

Here's wishing you a Wonderful New Year 2009! Some of you in different parts of the world have already ushered the New Year and some others still have a couple hours more before 2008 comes to an end...Either way, lets hope for a better year ahead!

Midnight Ramblings

As planned, we hit the ski slopes today and I skied for the first time this season. I don't think it was a great day to ski/snowboard as there were gusty winds and not enough fresh snow! The terrain conditions were pretty icy at most parts and it made it very hard to ski and painful to fall on! Oh well, I am looking forward to more ski trips in the future......I'm pretty sure there will be a couple more before the season ends....after all I do have my ski equipment so that will save me a bunch on rentals!

On another note, I found out who my Santa Claus was.......The Santa Claus who sent me the wonderful stemless Lenox wine glasses.....Well, a big THANK YOU to (in this case) "Santa Mommy & Santa Daddy".....You know who you are! "Santa Mommy" used to be my colleague at my old work place in Chicago and I actually pretty frequently call her "Mommy" at the office too...=).. and whine a lot to her like what daughters/girls do!! =)..... It was such a coincidence (I guess great minds think alike!) as I received this wine glass set and it was something that I was looking for; stemless wine glass in assorted colors ("Mommy" didn't even know about my secret wish list!)...............Well, I guess Santa must have dropped "Mommy" a little hint! Haha!! And for her present from me, it was a set of wine opener plus coasters! What are the odds of getting and giving wine related stuff the same X'mas!

Anyhoo.... it's New Year's eve you have any plans? As for me, I'm probably going to stay indoor.....there will be a snow storm in MA tomorrow, and we are expected to get about 5-8 inches of snow I think.........and at night it's gonna be super cold, don't forget super slushy too from the falling snow! It's going to be aweful counting down outdoors in this wintery weather, plus I'm not that happening!! I've planned out a mini NY eve celebration dinner with my brother, his friends, and maybe 3 other friends of mine.......A fondue party is being planned, with wine and some champagne to usher in the New Year.......I'll try to take pictures of the little low profile party and post them here!

Monday, December 29, 2008


Whop Dee Doo!! Time to bring out my skis!!! I'm going to the mountains tomorrow to S.K.I.!!! It's been about a year since I last skied, and I'm looking forward to hit the slopes tomorrow!! I do hope that I still remember how to ski and stop! =)....Pats we come!! Picture below was from last year's trip!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I believe in Santa Claus...

Do you believe in Santa Claus? I know I do!!....Here's why....

I received this package last week and it was delivered by UPS ( I think!) or maybe it was Santa!.....The package was addressed to me, and came from the store.......I was so excited to find out who it came from and opened up the pacakage...To my dismay, there was no packing slip, no card, no nothing what so ever inside the box except a beautifully wrapped gift.... I looked at the shipping box, there were just labels with no other information on it......or maybe the card is inside the wrapped gift....I'll find out when I open it!!....

So, I unwrapped the gift on X'mas....and there wasn't any card...etc to say who it was from......The gift was a set of gorgeous Lenox stemless wine glass in assorted colors (Santa's got an expensive taste!).....It was something that I've been looking to get or replace since I have a broken piece from another set that I have .......I am starting to think it was Santa who delivered this gift to me..since I do not have a chimney for him to slide down and leave my gift under the tree, he had to do it the modern way.......leave it at my doorstep!!

Well, Santa (or who ever you may be!)...... thank you so much for the lovely gift! I love it!

Friday, December 26, 2008

X'mas Eve Dinner

On the eve of X'mas, I woke up early to make a final run to the grocery store to grab some stuff for my mini X'mas eve dinner with my brother and his friends. They were to drive in from Buffalo and arrive in the evening just in time for dinner....... I decorated my plain dining table, spruce it up a little to give it a x'massy feel...
The menu for the night was cream of mushroom, mushroom tart (picture shown below), meatball spaghetti and bread pudding (which nobody ate coz we were too stuffed!)...

Besides preparing for the X'mas eve dinner, I was also busy making (my famous =P) Tiramisu to bring over to my friends X'mas party the next day. Here's the end result of my Tiramisu....I've decided to decorate it a little differently, then what I would usually was well worth the extra work and I received great feedbacks of the cake from the party! Now, would you like to order one of this from me? =P

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Ho!Ho!Ho! Merry X'mas!!!!

Here's wishing you a merry jolly X'mas! Doing anything special today? Get together with family and friends, perhaps? Well, I (with my brother and 2 of his friends) am driving down to Rhode Island later to spend X'mas with a friend of mine. He was kind to invite us to spend X'mas with his family and friends and feast on glorious food!!!..................................

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Dunkin' Goodness

I've been awake since 2 am this morning......I went to bed at 10.30pm last night and woke up a couple hours later as I needed to drop my husband at the airport(unfortunately, we won't be spending X'mas or New Years together...he's back home for the holidays...boohoo.!).......On the way to the airport, we bought ourselves some Dunkin' Donut Iced Coffee and being a smart ass.....I ordered a large cuppa iced coffee! Now, I'm all caffienated and can't seem to be able to sleep.......It's now almost 9am........I'm physically tired, but mentally I'm so so fresh!.......Or maybe I'm missing my boo..... that's why I can't sleep! =(..Have a safe trip home, boo!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Happy "Dong Zhi" / Winter Solstice Festival!

According to Wikipedia: "The Dōngzhì Festival or Winter Solstice Festival (Chinese: 冬至; Pinyin: dōng zhì; "The Extreme of Winter") is one of the most important festivals celebrated by the Chinese and other East Asians during the Dongzhi solar term on or around December 22 when sunshine is weakest and daylight shortest; i.e., on the first day of the Dongzhi solar term .

The origins of this festival can be traced back to the Yin and Yang philosophy of balance and harmony in the cosmos. After this celebration, there will be days with longer daylight hours and therefore an increase in positive energy flowing in. The philosophical significance of this is symbolized by the I Ching hexagram (復, "Returning").

Traditionally, the Dongzhi Festival is also a time for the family to get together. One activity that occurs during these get togethers (especially in the southern parts of China and in Chinese communities overseas) is the making and eating of Tangyuan (湯圓, Cantonese jyutping: tong1 jyun2; Mandarin Pinyin: Tāng Yuán) or balls of glutinuous rice, which symbolize reunion. Tangyuan are made of glutinuous rice flour and sometimes brightly coloured. Each family member receives at least one large Tang Yuan in addition to several small ones. The flour balls may be plain or stuffed. They are cooked in a sweet soup or savoury broth with both the ball and the soup/broth served in one bowl."

I always enjoy eating "tang yuen" and have made a little pot for my husband and I to eat to celebrate this festival. Here's my "tang yuen"..multi-color in pink, white and green....All rolled up in a ball and ready to be cooked in a pot of boiling water...

The "tang yuens" being cooked in boiling water:

A bowl of "tang yuens" in ginger flavored syrup:

An Early X'mas Gift..

My hubby and I received an early X'mas present from a close friend...Mr. X...........2 tickets to the Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls game......we had awesome seats in the season ticket's loge area.................THANKS for the lovely X'mas present, Mr. X........... I have been rooting for the Bulls for quite a while, but decided to root for the Celtics this time, since we were seated in the season ticket holders' area....and it would be more fun to root for the home team! I'm glad I rooted for the home team, as we beat the Bulls 126-108, for their 17th consecutive win!

At the game, we also saw the World's Fastest Man...Usain Bolt of Jamaica =)....If you don't know who he is.............check it out here :

Oh yeah, did I mention that we had to brave the snow storm to see this game??? It was a snowy Friday, and we headed into the city a couple hours early to ensure we have plenty of travel time in the snow......Here are some pictures of our snowy day......glad that we had a safe travel back and forth home......

Friday, December 19, 2008

Honey, What's For Dinner? : Chicken Parmesan

Last night I made some Chicken Parmesan with Steamed Brocolli & Pasta on the side for dinner. I think it turned out pretty yummy and it was a simple task....First, I coated the chicken breast with some Italian breadcrumbs, salt, pepper and Parmesan Cheese.......then pan fried them until golden brown....... Topped it up with some pasta sauce and Mozarella Cheese and stuck them under the broiler for the cheese to melt and brown! As for the pasta side, it was easy as well......... I cooked my pasta till al dente.....toss in pasta sauce, minced garlic and butter..........My steamed brocolli was a no brainer.....wash it, cut it up, put it in a bowl with a lil' water, cover it up with plastic wrap and microwave it for about 2-3 minutes........................then toss in butter and some salt!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

If only Santa

would help me send my packages...........................I would not have to haul all these to the post office........juggling between opening doors, balancing the packages and watching my steps.............If only Santa would help me with my packages........I would not need to fork out $60 for postage another $40 for 2 packages that needed to go earlier..................That's a whopping $100 just for postage.....that's $100 that I could use for more presents or just to pamper myself!!! Ahhhh....if only Santa would help me send my X'mas packages ................................... I would have to dream on!!!!
Well, now that these gifts are out of my door, I hope they make it to their destinations by X'mas!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Busy Baker Me

I've been a busy busy bee today! Decided to bake more X'mas goodies for the hubby to bring to work, and for both of us to snack on.......Well, here's a picture what I've churned out today. This box is all packed and ready for my hubby to bring to his work place on Friday.... I might bake one more X'massy brownie between now and then.......Anyway, from left to right: Peanut Butter Brownies, Cherry Blossom Cookies, and Apricot Pecan Cookies.

Yay! It's Snowing!

It's finally snowing! I woke up this morning to see a blanket of snow everywhere! The weather forecast was right this will indeed snow a couple inches! It's about 2-3 inches right now, and I think that's about the amount of snow we'll be getting for the today's snowy day! It might even rain later, so the blanket of snow may disappear later in the day!......=(

Monday, December 15, 2008

French Macarons

I have been looking at pictures and posts on French Macarons and have never tasted them. These babies looked like miniature colorful hamburger and are simply pretty to look at. As a food lover...I craved to taste one of these babies and attempted to make a small batch of my own. I've read blogs on how difficult it is to make them perfect.....and they were quite right!

Here's a picture of my attempt at making French Macarons. I used Earl Grey Tea leaves for the shell, and Nutella (Hazelnut Chocolate) for the filling. I'm pretty happy with the combination and taste......but not the way they look. My macarons turned out to be in all shapes and sizes!! I guess I really need more practise to make them perfect! I'll have to think of other flavors to combine!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

I Love Gingerbread Man...........

As long as I could remember....I've always been very fond of Gingerbread Man......Whenever our family go to this bakery in town, I would make sure I go home with a Gingerbread Man.......I love the "spicyness" in the cookies, and I think the shape is just too cool and fun to eat!..

Well, to get my fix of gingerbreadman this X'mas, I made some of my own cute gingerbread men... a couple of batches..and must confess that I have a little too many gingerbread men in my house now.........Well, again...that means I have plenty to share and plenty for myself to munch!!

Here's a picture of "my naked men".. =)

Here's a picture of my men "dressed-up":

Friday, December 12, 2008

Icy Storm...

I woke up this morning to find trees & cable lines covered with ice......and they look so oh so pretty.....It finally felt a little like winter as I have not really seen snow in Massachusetts (the little flurries last weekend, don't count)! Oh, how I wish I have picures of "crystalized" tree and cable lines to show you....Google "Ice Storm Massachusetts" and I'm sure you'll find something.....It really is pretty and scary at the same time....Apparently, there was an Ice Storm wonder my lights were flickering last night.....Trees and cable lines are down, due to the weight of the ice and the act of gravity. I vividly remember December of 2007....we had so much snow that month that it was almost a record in 10 or 20 years (I think!)...

Anyway, back to the Ice Storm story...we are blessed as we still have our power in our home.........Many places have lost power and in some places, power has not been restored yet. Rumours are, power might only be restored over the weekend or Monday, if the poor souls are lucky!........Thank goodness it's not tremendously cold today!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Cornflakes, anyone?

How do you eat your cornflakes? In a bowl filled with some cold milk? Top it off in your favorite casserole dish? Or like me.........make Cornflake Cookies!!! I've decided to make 3 batches of cornflake cookies today to celebrate the X'mas holidays....Well, it's just an excuse for me to make this yummy golden crunchy cookie and share it around........After all, tis' the season to share...=)Oh yeah, I've baked my gingerbread man cookies. However, I haven't found the time to frost them up yet.....They're currently "naked" in zip lock bags till I have the time to make them pretty! I will post pictures my gingerbread man once they are dressed up!

Oh, Christmas Tree....Oh, Christmas Tree

My Christmas Tree is up! Is yours up yet? =P......I've put ours up a few days after Thanksgiving....It's a 6-7 foot tall tree, and I reused some of the decorations I had from last year.....and bought some new ones! I just couldn't resist some of my new ornaments, especially when they are 50-60% off the regular retail! Presents have been wrapped and are piled up beneath the tree....I'm almost done with X'mas shopping..although I haven't gotten anything for a few very important husband and my brother! There's still time to shop around, and I hope to get it done SOON!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My First Blog

After much hesitation, I've decided to start my own blog....sharing with you various food, cookies, cakes and treats from my kitchen and perhaps bits and pieces of my life.....=)...It will be interesting to see how often I will be updating this blog, how long will I keep this blog and what this blog will bring me! Will see what happens!
Anyhoo...........with X'mas around the corner....I think I'll be busy churning out cookies, cakes and yummy treats during my favourite time of the year!
Stay tuned for my next posting!
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