Friday, March 28, 2014

Foodie Fridays - No Bake Oreo Cheesecake

That day I suddenly have a strong urge to make a cheesecake but did not wish to make the Blackberry Cheesecake I made last year, so I asked my friends for some cheesecake recipes.  They were very helpful and sent a few recipes my way, I went through them and decided to use The Baking Biatch recipe to make Oreo Cheesecake.  It looked simple enough to be done without needing much kitchen counter space (opps! I just told the world that my kitchen is in a mess!) nor creating mess (not that my kitchen mind since its already in a mess).

Anyway~ I was supposed to freeze the cake for 1.5 to 2 hours but I forgot about it and went to bed.  Poor cake was sitting in the freezer for 8 hours, when I removed it from the freezer it was stone hard cold.  Nonetheless, it look BEAUTIFUL isn't it?


Now, the recipe calls for the cream to be removed from the Oreo cookies, at first I thought it is going to be a messy job with the scraping and every thing but I was wrong.  The cream came off very easily, u can either use a toothpick to pick the cream or use your *ahem* finger (make sure they are clean though).  I feel so sayang to see the pile of cream wasted and nearly want to keep them to be eaten later but I think DinoBoy will want to have a share if he sees me licking the cream off a spoon.  Better not pile too much sweet cream onto him lest he goes sugar crazy at night, so the cream went into the dustbin instead.

I enjoyed crushing the Oreo cookies as it gives me a chance to bring my pestle out from the cupboard and putting it to some use.  Crush the cookies till they are small and crumbly, mine is crumbly but still not small enough plus I went pestle banging crazy and some of the pieces became too tiny.


Do remember to whip the cream cheese or butter when they are at room temperature so that you do not have bits of them flying out from the bowl thus decorating your kitchen, not to mention that they combine faster and easier with castor sugar too.


I decorated them with normal sized Oreo cookies instead of mini Oreo cookies because I have extras at home.  I think mini ones will be more suitable, lesser cookies to munch.  And since I used normal sized Oreo cookies there weren't any space to pipe on the whipped cream as decoration.


I gave this cake to AuntieC who gave it a thumbs up but personally I think there are some improvements to be made if I were to make this cake again. 

First of all, refrain from pestle craze frenzy thus pulverizing the cookies.  Secondly, try to use lesser gelatin, like 1½ tablespoon.  Having said that, I am also not sure whether the 8 hours of sitting in the freezer sort of changes the gelatin or/and its texture, it made the cake taste jelly-liked, I would prefer it to be creamer.

Updated on 01 May 2014
I made Mango Cheesecake later and used only 1½ tablespoon with 100ml water, the cheesecake is soft and creamy instead of jelly-liked.  So use the gelatin amount according to the way you prefer your cheesecake to be. Happy Cheesecake Making!!!

So there you have it, the 2nd cheesecake I made so far.  Now I am thinking of making a no bake Mango Cheesecake.  YUM!

No Bake Oreo Cheesecake

Adapted from thebakingbiatch.com
Prep Time: 45mins
Cook Time: 2.5hours
Keywords: bake dessert cake 
Yield: 8 slices of cake

Ingredients
For the Cake
* 250g plain yoghurt
* 250g cream cheese (room temperature)
* 2 ½ tbsp gelatin powder
* 100ml water
* 75g castor sugar
* 200g Oreo cookies (excluding cream)
* 80g unsalted butter

For the Filling
* 40g Oreo cookies (excluding cream)

For Decoration
* 8 slices mini oreo cookies
* 20ml whipped cream (I used non-dairy ones)

Instructions
1. Put the 200g Oreo cookies into a ziplock bag and crush them either using a rolling pin or anything hard enough to do the job easily. Set aside.
2. Melt the butter using the microwave on medium high heat for a minute or till melted or using the double boiling method. Set aside to allow it to cool down.
3. Add the cooled down melted butter into the crushed Oreo cookies. Mix well by shaking the bag.
4. Empty the mixed contents onto a 7" springfoam pan or cake ring. Use the back of a spoon or spatula to smooth out the mixture and press it down.
5. Put it into the freezer to set while you prepare the cream cheese.
6. Dissolve the gelatin powder with water using microwave on medium-high heat for a minute or till mixture is all dissolved or use the double boiling method. Set aside to allow it to cool down.
7. In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and the sugar. Whisk well on low speed till mixture is creamy.
8. Add in the gelatin mixture. Whisk well on low speed till well combined.
9. Add the plain yoghurt into the mixing bowl. Mix well on low speed till well combined.
10. Break up the remaining 40g of Oreo cookies into smaller pieces and add them to the mixture.
11. Stir to mix well. Deliberately crush some of the cookies into smaller pieces in the mixing bowl so as to flavour the mixture even more. A spatula will works for this.
12. Pour mixture into cake ring. Smooth the top as much as you can with the spatula.
13. Decorate with the small Oreo cookies by setting them slightly apart and about 1/3 way into the mixture.
14. Place cake in freezer for 1.5 - 2 hours to firm up. Stick a toothpick to the middle of the cake. The cake is ready if the toothpick comes our clean and not moist.
15. Bring cake down to chiller once cake is set.
16. To remove cake, run a small paring knife gently along the sides of the cake. The cake ring should then slide easily upwards to reveal a beautiful cake.

To decorate with whipped cream
1. Whip up the fresh cream till stiff peaks are formed.
2. Pipe the fresh cream onto the cake. I used Wilton tip 32.

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Grimmtastic Girls - Book Blast & Giveaway

About the Books


Title: Grimmtastic Girls #1: Cinderella Stays Late
Authors: Joan Holub & Suzanne Williams
Publication Date: March 25, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
Pages: 192
Recommended Ages: 8 to 12
Summary: The authors of the hit Goddess Girls series put a fun and girly twist on another super-popular theme: fairy tales!

Once upon a time, in faraway Grimmlandia...

A Grimmtastic girl named Cinderella is starting her first week at Grimm Academy on the wrong foot. Cinda's totally evil stepsisters are out to make her life miserable. The Steps tease Cinda, give her terrible advice about life at the academy, and even make her look bad in front of her new friends, Red, Snow, and Rapunzel! But when Cinda overhears the Steps plotting a villainous deed that could ruin Prince Awesome's ball, Cinda, her new friends, and a pair of magical glass slippers have to stop them--before the last stroke of midnight!

AmazonGoodreads


Title: Grimmtastic Girls #2: Red Riding Hood Gets Lost
Authors: Joan Holub & Suzanne Williams
Publication Date: March 25, 2014
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
Pages: 192
Recommended Ages: 8 to 12
Summary: Red Riding Hood might have a terrible sense of direction, but her grimmtastic friends are always there to help!

Once upon a time, in faraway Grimmlandia...

Red Riding Hood is thrilled to try out for the school play. Acting is her dream, and she's great at it--too bad she has stage fright! After a grimmiserable audition, Red decides to focus on helping her friends Cinda, Snow, and Rapunzel save Grimm Academy from the E.V.I.L. Society. But when Red gets lost in Neverwood forest and runs into Wolfgang, who might be part of E.V.I.L., she needs her magic basket and a grimmazingly dramatic performance to figure out what's going on!


About the Authors

Joan Holub

Joan Holub has authored and/or illustrated more than 130 children's books, including Little Red Writing (illustrated by Caldecott Honoree Melissa Sweet) and Zero the Hero. She lives in NC and is online at www.joanholub.com


Suzanne Williams

Suzanne Williams is the author of nearly 50 books for children, including the award-winning picture book Library Lil (illustrated by Steven Kellogg). She lives near Seattle, WA and is online at www.suzanne-williams.com


Co-authors Joan and Suzanne have written the Goddess Girls, Heroes in Training, and Grimmtastic Girls series. Though they live in different states and hardly ever get to see each other, they spend lots of time together in Grimmlandia.



$50 Book Blast Giveaway


Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)
Contest ends: April 23, 11:59 pm, 2014
Open: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the authors, Joan Holub & Suzanne Williams and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Maisy and the Missing Mice - Book Blast & Giveaway

About the Book

Maisy and the Missing Mice
Title: Maisy and the Missing Mice (The Maisy Files)
Author: Elizabeth Woodrum
Publication Date: September 24, 2013 
Publisher: Independent 
Pages: 75
Recommended Ages: 6 to 10
Summary: Maisy Sawyer is not your average fourth grade student. She is a detective with a special skill for solving mysteries. She loves black and white mystery movies, cherry lollipops, and her dog, Reesie. When a thief known as The Black Boot steals the school's mascots and her lollipops, Maisy sets out to solve the case. Can she help return the mice to their home in the science lab? Will she ever see her beloved lollipops again? Find out in the first book in The Maisy Files series.


Book Trailer



Purchase


* NOTE: Available for only 99 cents through Amazon. OR, you can receive 15% off the regular price of the print version of Maisy and the Missing Mice by visiting https://www.createspace.com/4368649 in the month of March and entering the code RXJN6DUZ upon checking out.

The Buzz

"Woodrum certainly knows her target audience and does a very nice job with the character development of Maisy. This is an incredibly kid-friendly story that makes a great introduction to the genre of mystery for newly independent readers. It's a quick page turning read that encourages kids to think outside of the box." ~ The Children's Book Review

"My name is Kat. I am 9 years old. I would rate this a five because I like everything about it, the mystery the most. It was fun to read. My favorite part was the mystery and the end. I love this book so much. I think other kids would love it too because it has mystery and most kids would like mystery books. Most mystery books have a good mystery. I would love to read the whole series." ~ 5 Star Review, Heather A., Amazon

"I knew I would love this book simply because I knew it would remind me of the mystery books I read in my childhood. I really love how much trust the teachers and community as a whole put in Maisy. She is well deserving of their admiration as the way she finds clues and finds the mascot for the school is well thought out. This is a story any child would love to read. I hope Maisy continues to solve mysteries..." ~ 5 Star Review, Josh, Amazon

About the Author: Elizabeth Woodrum


Elizabeth Woodrum is an elementary teacher in Ohio. She came to love writing when she was in elementary school, but more recently began writing material for use in her classroom. From that writing, grew the desire to write books for the general population of children and adults alike. The Maisy Files, a children's series, is the first series that she has published. The series currently has one book, Maisy and the Missing Mice. Elizabeth plans to add more books to the series, and would also like to publish books for adults in the future.


As a reader, Elizabeth prefers the fantasy genre, but she enjoys realistic fiction as well. Some of her favorite authors include JK Rowling, Stephenie Meyer, Rick Riordan, Veronica Roth, Suzanne Collins, and Nicholas Sparks. Originally from Indiana, Elizabeth currently resides near Dayton, Ohio with her two pets: a cat named Butterscotch and a dog named Reese Cup.


* $25 Book Blast Giveaway *


Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)
Contest ends: April 18, 11:59 pm, 2014
Open: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Elizabeth Woodrum and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

I am not thrill about my son's special gift

DinoBoy first met my dad when he was slightly over 1 year old, nothing unusual except that my dad passed away a year before he was born.  Some of you may say its normal for toddlers to see dead family members and it should go away as the baby grows older, we thought so too but he was over 3 years old he still sees my dad AND other stranger spirits around.

Actually I should not be surprised since DinoPapa have the same ability but it is hard to accept when it is happening to my son.  It also does not help that the house we stayed in a few years ago was full of them spirits.  Like most people, I do not believe in spirits but I have seen with my own eyes these spirits "playing" with DinoBoy to waver that belief.

Incident #1- Both of us were at home, DinoBoy was slightly over 1 year old and in his walker zooming around the house.  He zoomed into the kitchen, shortly after I heard him making some fuss so I turned to look at him from the living room.  His face was full of exasperation while he tried to move forward but could not, there were nothing in front of him, the walker's wheels were not caught onto anything.  I got mad and shouted loudly "Ok enough!  Don't play any more!" and almost immediately DinoBoy was able to move forward.

Incident #2 - He was slightly older, it was bed time and we left him in the room to fall asleep by himself.  About an hour later we went in to peep at him and he was lying down but still wide awake, smiling and moving his arms in front of him.  I scolded him immediately to stop playing and go to sleep NOW!  The next second he waved and said "Bye-bye Jiejie (big sister)."

There were other incidents too like the time he stepped out of the lift at our house, waved and said "Hi uncle!" where there were apparently no one there.

Or the time he was watching a paranormal TV series with me and said in an as-a-matter-of-fact tone "There is a little girl standing there.", this was confirmed by DinoPapa who was watching with us.  So don't think all paranormal TV shows are staged.

We stayed in that house for 5 years and I was not really happy to stay there.  I mean, the house was spacious, we furnished it comfortably and homely but these thing just made me jumpy and look over my shoulders very often, I even started to see dark shadows moving across the room from the corner of my eyes.  Believe me, it was creepy.

We have since moved away from that house and last year DinoBoy shared with me that on weekend afternoons (since we are always not at home during weekdays) he always see this plump "auntie" with short curly hair coming in from our service balcony (we stayed on the 11th storey), "walk" across the kitchen and into the wall to our next door neighbour's house.

According toe DinoPapa these spirits are always talking gibberish non stop, perhaps trying to convey some messages or seeking help from some one.  These constant noise near his ear irritates DinoBoy and some times he couldn't differentiate if the constant chattering sound comes from "them" or his classmates and he will yelled out "shut up!" suddenly (according to his teacher) which startled every one especially when they were busy doing their work quietly.  It is affecting his daily life in school, others did not understand what is happening to him and he is ready to share it openly with his friends.  I believe that being sensitive to such noise and presence has contributed to his unpredictable emotion swings.

The Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival that falls on the lunar 7th month is a torturous month for both DinoPapa and DinoBoy.  This is the month where the Gate of Hell is open to allow the spirits to come up to earth to visit their living family.  That means there will be a lot more these spirits then usual creating so much din (imagine staying in a room full of people and all of them talking at the same time in loud voice) that both of them were unable to have a good night's rest.  I look at my boys and sigh sadly because every day they wake up listless and with dark eye rings.

This gift may seems fascinating or amazing but it's far from that.  As parents, we are supposed to hold our children close to our heart, protect them from all harm, reassure them that everything is going to be OKAY.  How do you do these when your child tells you that he sees orbs in the room, dark shadows around him, or hear noises or smells pungent smell that you don't experience?  How do you reassure him confidently that these spirits will not harm him and he will be safe if he ignore them when in reality 99% of the time you are unsure?  What can you do to protect him from things that you can't see, feel and touch?  Well, you can't.

I feel helpless, I don't know what to do except to hope that every day will be an uneventful day for him.  I have no idea how to teach him to handle such gift, I know it is not healthy to leave him to fight it himself but until I find ways to help him all I can do is to hug him tighter and tell him that it will be better tomorrow.



Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Magician's Doll - Book Blast & Giveaway

About the Book

Title: The Magician's Doll
Author: M.L. Roble
Publication Date: February 2, 2013
Publisher: Independent
Pages: 320
Recommended Ages: 10+
Summary: "They are stronger. They are coming. They will arrive!"

Life would be so much better for twelve-year-old Natalie if she and her mother weren’t different; other kids wouldn’t pick on her; she wouldn’t have to get into fights. She would have friends. But Natalie has abilities that set her apart, and despite her very best efforts to have a normal life, her developing “gift” has a way of upending them all. Then one day a big top circus rolls into town bringing with it Beausoleil the Magician, his daughter Louisa, and his mysterious doll. Strange things are afoot with Beausoleil’s arrival, and in his wake, an eerie storm is approaching. Soon Natalie discovers there is more to her world and the people around her than she knew, and that being different is just the tip of the iceberg... The Magician’s Doll sparks readers’ imaginations with a tale of magical discoveries, profound friendships, a fight against evil, and the growth that comes with facing your fears and accepting who you are.

Purchase the Book


The Buzz

"The story of exceptional and gifted beings secretly living among us is timeless; this exhilarating book is an impressive treatment of that classic storyline. The writing is fast and clear, with a well-developed plot and perfect buildup of action and suspense." ~ 5 Star Review, G. Wagner, Amazon

"This is perfect for kids of the middle grade age. It forces them to look at the way they treat each other and their differences. It makes them look at what true friendship is and what they would do in certain circumstances. I am sure this book was written to be a wonderful story, yet I find it is a great example of teaching kids something without them realizing they are learning I will definitely continue to recommend this book to parents and students." ~ 5 Star Review, Sandra S., Amazon

"I am a eighth grader, and was told to read this book by a friend. I am a huge fan of fantasy and magic, and thoroughly enjoyed this book. I found it well thought through with colorful characters from a variety of backgrounds. The concepts and ideas are fresh and interesting, I especially enjoyed the idea of travel through maps, like Phillipe. I would DEFINITELY recommend this book to all my friends, and will do so as soon as possible." ~ 5 Star Review, Eugenia, Amazon

About the Author: M.L. Roble

M. L. Roble's desire to write a children's novel stems from the nostalgia of her own middle grade reading years where she first experienced books like "The Chronicles of Narnia" and "The Shattered Stone". There have been different books and genres since, but those years fueled an enchantment for story that continues to this day.




* Book Blast Giveaway *


Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)
Contest ends: April 11, 11:59 pm, 2014
Open: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, M.L. Roble and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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Monday, March 17, 2014

Breakfast is a serious matter

We all know how important breakfast is but for most of us lunch may be our first meal of the day.  Many experts states that it is unhealthy and we SHOULD cultivate a habit to have our  breakfast before we heads off to work or school.  Have you ever wonder what breakfast mean?  Well, it literally means "break" the "fast".  While you are sleeping your body is not eating for the pass 8 hours or so and to wake up your body system you have to break the fast.  Sounds logic?  Here are some of the reason why we should eat our breakfast;

1. First and most importantly (especially for those who wish to drop some weight), skipping breakfast will cause you to over eat during lunch and reaching out for fatty or high sugar snacks to curb the hunger.  These means putting on more pounds rather then shedding them off, so skipping breakfast for dieting reason is a myth.

2. It helps to improved concentration, memory and performance in the classroom or at work.  And a child who eats breakfast will have better problem-solving skills, and eye-hand coordination.

3.
Photo Credit

Enuff said!  Going for long periods without eating can result in low blood sugar which can affect mood too.  Eat your breakfast so that you start your day happy instead of being grouchy & grumpy or even stressed up.

I usually do not have any breakfast except for a cup of 3-in-1 coffee, some days if I feel really hungry by the time I reach office around 8.20am I will grab a bread or a sandwich from the bakery near here or if I feel really famish I will get a packet of economical fried bee hoon with some side dishes to go with it.

As for DinoBoy, he's been eating his breakfast in childcare and when he enters primary school I will make sure he either drink a cup of warm milk alone or have a sausage bun to go with it.  If he wakes up real early (which is rare now) we will pop by the nearby coffeeshop for his favourite eggs & toast breakfast, like this morning.  Having a hearty breakfast before embarking on an exciting full day workshop.

Breakfast to start his school term break

Do you know that today 17 March 2014, is National Breakfast Day initiated by McDonald's in 2013?  I did not know that till I googled about it when I reached office.  McDonald's started this in Asia Pacific with the hope of reminding people about waking up to better mornings with breakfast.

How did we know about this? Well, we were having our toast breakfast in the food court when we heard the few regulars asking each other if they are going to queue at McDonald's to get a free burger; in this case its Egg McMuffins.

Now, I usually will not choose fast food over healthier cooked food but sometimes when time is limited, or we're stuck at home due to the rain etc this will be a better option then skipping meals at all.

Photo Credit

If you miss out their morning event that ends at 11am, fret not coz they are serving their breakfast menu all day today!  So for you people who love McDonald's breakfast just like me, you get to eat them at whichever timing you like all day TODAY.  I'm going to get my big breakfast later~


McDonald's also have app to enable you to win something from them every day, click here to learn more about it.  Search for McDonald's Surprise Alarm in app store or play store now.

Photo Credit

So remember, have a healthy hearty breakfast every morning to start your day, it will set your tone and mood for the rest of the day, it will also motivate you to eat healthily throughout the day.

Photo Credit

*Disclaimer : We are in no way affiliated to McDonald's or have been compensated for this post by mentioning their National Breakfast Day cause or their Surprise Alarm apps.  We agree with them on the importance of breakfast and think that their apps will be a great way to get more people to have their breakfast from now onwards.  All opinions are mine and photos are credited to the source appropriately.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Foodie Fridays - Home Cooked Meals #1

As DinoPapa has been working the long hours shift, he rarely have any decent food thus its no wonder that he has a craving for home cooked meals.  I decided to cook dinner on Wednesday, they are very simple and easy to prepare dishes that can be done in about 15mins, except for the winter melon soup that was prepared the night before.

The boy's dinner (left) and my 1 bowl dinner (right)

On Tuesday night I prepared the winter melon soup, after boiling the soup for about 30mins I popped it into my thermal pot for it to continue cooking till the next day.  I usually take out and make it boil over the stove in the morning and put it back into the pot, just to make sure that heat is there to continue cooking the soup till night.


I have some prawns in the fridge so I decided to make baked lemon butter prawn, 15mins of baking in the oven and its ready.  The prawns were not very fresh as MIL bought them in late January 2014 for the CNY reunion steamboat dinner, some part of the prawns were soggy but the baking, lemon and butter sort of cover that up that flaw as the prawns turned out to be ok.


I am not sure about you but we must have vegetables in our meals, its stir fried nai bai in oyster sauce this time.


I initially wanted to grab a packet of marinated pork from Cold Storage but the one at my work place does not have any!  So I asked DinoPapa's help, he suggested fried eggs with onion, I immediately said OK.  This is a really really simple dish; 1 onion and 3 eggs, BUT I got confused when I was frying the onion.  Should I pour the beaten up eggs into the work or dish them out and mix onion with eggs then pour back into the wok???  I have only seconds to make a decision and I did none of the above... I dished out the fried onions out from the wok, pour the eggs then put the onions onto the eggs and fry them.  Don't ask me why I do that coz I have no idea too, I guess my brain shut down at that moment.  Anyway the dish turned out well though I think DinoPapa's version is million times tastier then mine.


An hour and fifteen minutes later we sat down to have a TV dinner; eating dinner while watching TV, something that is rarely allowed in the home but I was hungry & tired till I just want to sit at the sofa with my feet up and have my dinner. 


I think I am getting a hang of cooking in limited time coz I used to be cranky and will snap at DinoBoy if he ever put his tiniest toe in the kitchen to talk to me.  That night I was cool and calm, enjoying the whole cooking process, and yes DinoBoy came into the kitchen but I did not chase him out angrily.  I was also able to enjoy my dinner in a relaxed mood.  

So really, practice makes perfect!  All of you working mum should not feel that it is an impossible task to cook dinner during weekdays.  The dishes does not have to be fancy, it can be Simple and Healthy.

~ ~ ~

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

A little doodle brightens every one's day

DinoBoy showed his Maths & English CA1 paper yesterday. When I looked at the Maths paper I frowned... He quickly said "I'm bored so I draw on the paper, teacher say I can." followed by a big grin.  Alright... I choose to ignore this since well the teacher said ok and its over so no use lecturing him about that.


Then I saw this and burst out laughing!

When he came out from the shower I asked him what is this and instead of replying me, he goes "Hi my name is Steve, I'm a llaa-maa~" in a rapping rhythm.


Sounds familiar? No? No fear, listen to the first few seconds of the following Disney XD commercial, rapping Steve the llama.  He saw this TV commercial back in November 2013, both of us found it so amusing and every time this commercial comes up we will laugh at it.



I rarely go through DinoBoy's yellow netted file (where he kept the spelling list, student handbook, letters or test papers to be signed and return to teachers etc) but this morning I decided to do a quick check before we leave the house, I found this inside the file, 2 small sheets of paper folded into half with some drawings.  Upon close inspection I realized that it's a short stickman comic strip DinoBoy drawn for his friend.





I asked him why is his friend is naked, he said his friend said he is naked, he found it so funny and drew a short story about him.  Aye... I think he will really stand there and laugh at his friend if this ever happen in real life. 

I shared a Kids Art Journal by Creative Kids a few days ago, seeing what DinoBoy has been doing, I think I should go ahead and start an art journal with him too.  Should be interesting to see what he put inside, maybe he will draw some funny comic strips to cheer us up.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Diego's Dragon, Book 1: Spirits of the Sun - Book Blast & Giveaway

About the Book

Title: Diego's Dragon, Book 1: Spirits of the Sun
Author: Kevin Gerard
Publication Date: September 30, 2011
Publisher: Crying Cougar Press
Pages: 186
Recommended Ages: 8+
Summary: An eleven-year-old Latino boy wins a district-wide writing contest for sixth graders. When an author visits his school to award his prize, Diego Ramirez has no idea how much his life is about to change. Nathan Sullivan hands Diego his statue, a handsome, glistening black dragon. He shakes his hand and leaves him to his friends. The students crowd around Diego, asking for permission to hold it.

After hearing the name Magnifico spoken aloud by family and friends, Diego awards it to his new dragon. If he only knew how fitting the name was, he might have known what lay ahead. Magnifico is the leader of the Sol Dragones, dragons that live within the magical fires of the sun. Nathan Sullivan is the earth's connection to the mysterious creatures. It is his task to find Magnifico’s guide.

As Magnifico comes to life he becomes quite mischievous, playing tricks on Diego to embarrass him. As he discovers his bloodline, however, Diego assumes greater control over his dragon and his destiny. In the climactic journey, he frees his people and suffers a terrible loss by guiding Magnifico to their goal.

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The Buzz

"Every book by this author is amazing. My son, who is very picky has bought every book. He has read them without putting them down and even asked me to organize having Kevin come to his school. Kevin, the Author is a person doing what he loves to do and it shows in his work and his interactions with the kids. You will not regret your purchase!" ~ 5 Star Review, Adina F., Amazon

"My 4th grade daughter is obsessed with dragon books. When I discovered Diego's Dragon, I jumped at it--and now Kevin Gerard is her new favorite author! For a voracious reader like my daughter, that is the highest of compliments, especially considering her love for Erin Hunter's Warrior Cats series. Her enthusiastic commentary about book one, and her pleading for book 2, had me eager to read it for myself. All I can say is . . . my daughter was right. For any fans of middle grade adventure or fantasy or dragons or boy books or epic awesomeness, this is the perfect story." ~ 5 Star Review, S. O'Donnell, Amazon

"Kids who like dragon stories will love this adventure series. Those who liked Harry Potter, kids and adults, will like this series. I truly believe the Diego’s Dragon series will have readers anticipating new releases and then devouring the books immediately upon release. Spirits of the Sun is a great book for boys, and girls—and adults. Without gushing too much, I believe Spirits of the Sun is one of the best books I have read. If the series holds up, I will be its number one fan, though many others will claim that title. Kids, get this book." ~ 5 Star Review, Sue M., Amazon

About the Author: Kevin Gerard

Kevin Gerard lives in San Diego, California, with two feline friends, Jesse the WonderCat and Little Man. When not writing or teaching statistics at Cal State San Marcos, he enjoys walking the grounds at the San Diego Zoo, hitting the waves at Cardiff State Beach, and hanging with his brother, nieces and nephews at the local Pizza Port. He also enjoys playing Halo on the internet; look for him in the rocket games as one of the characters from Diego’s Dragon or Conor and the Crossworlds.




* $100 Book Blast Giveaway *


Prize: $100 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)
Contest ends: April 4, 11:59 pm, 2014
Open: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Kevin Gerard and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.

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