Omakase lunch

When I decided to get the Elba, I told myself I was not going to spend on anything else for photography. That meant not signing up for photography workshops, and not getting additional gear. If I wanted to get anything camera/photography related, I’d have to earn from either baking or blogging to get the money for it.

Well yesterday, I went against that decision.

Jo mentioned earlier this week how she wanted to checkout a camera shop that is said to have Hidalgo prices – without having to actually go to Quiapo. I looked up their Multiply site and went gaga at so many things. So we set a date for Saturday afternoon. I asked my friend Edsel to be there too – we need to be sure we’re buying the right stuff and not just be swayed by the sales people right?

So off to the camera shop we went, and I ended up getting a UV CPL filter/polarizer, and a +10 macro filter. Jo ended up not getting a filter, but she did go home with a tripod.

There were other things I would have wanted to take home but I had to stop somewhere.

The original plan was to go home in the morning after my shift, and meet with everyone at Il Terrazo at Morato extension where the FotoHub was located.  But I didn’t finish my work as early as intended, so I ended up staying there til 12. Alfred came by, and we went to lunch at Omakase (also at Il Terrazo) and waited there for both Jo and Edsel (who arrived separately of course).

Of course we ordered my favorite salmon sashimi, but we also ordered a couple of other things:


The American Dream

omakase 2

Rising Sun

omakase-jap potato salad

Japanese Potato Salad

The only one I didn’t really like was the Japanese Potato Salad. It tasted more like french fries/potato wedges than salad. 🙁 It was a full meal though, we were stuffed even though these don’t look much.

I feel bad though that I couldn’t ask Jo to spend the afternoon shooting around with our D60’s.  I was just so sleepy already! 🙁

I deserve chocolates!

super shiny T-zone was just the tip of the iceberg.

At work last night, I started feeling woozy like my neck and my head were weighing me down. Seriously.  I went to the clinic but I had no fever as it turns out. I was given a pill for body aches and the nurse said that it could be the colds that causing the headache.

Methinks it’s another to be blamed on PMS.

And it probably means that I will have an even worse time when AuntFlo comes around. Yay me! :S

Yesterday, I really wanted to share this photo:


I made truffles last week and, as expected, it was a smashing hit 🙂

I mixed another batch yesterday, but I didn’t get to coat them with chocolate. My brother agreed to pick up what I needed for a makeshift double boiler (what I used before was already thrown out) but he got caught up in traffic so he had to head straight home rather than stay on the road during color-coding hours.  I tried melting chocolate using the microwave oven but I couldn’t get it right! No melting today either thanks to the aches.

I hope it goes away this weekend – I need to be well so I can finally bake something!

My Elba Range has arrived home

We were expecting it, but not as early as it arrived.  There was no electricity (as is always expected when there’s severe weather conditions) so we were outside enjoying the cool wind and the light drizzle (versus the heavy downpour just prior and then again after that time).  I also took it as an opportunity to socialize with my cousins, and the kids too 🙂

Then I heard someone at the gate asking for me, I knew right away who they were! They came in a truck, bearing a big box with my name on it. Labelled this (Italy’s Finest, it says):


Because they came earlier than expected, we hadn’t cleared space for it in the cooking area yet. So we just asked the delivery men to set it somewhere without opening the package before they left. This old love was still in it’s original place of honor, though we’ve moved it already when this photo was taken:


We’ve had this oven for seven years, and got it for less than a third of the price of the Elba.  If I remember correctly, our earnings from baking (mom and mine) paid for the monthly installments then. We’ve had some good times, me and this oven. It was the first I ever had and for awhile, it nourished my love for baking.  I haven’t used the oven for over a year.  I hated that it doesn’t have a proper thermostat, and that you had to turn the knob from high to medium for specific intervals just to achieve the right temperature.  Whatever happened to leaving the muffins to bake for 20 minutes while you move on to something else? That was impossible.

But – the La Germania served me well.  The goodies that came out of it brought smiles to many people. I expect to have a longer journey and a more regular bakeoff with the Elba this time. 🙂

It still works, by the way, though it probably needs a good cleaning. I’ve offered it to my cousin at a very very low price, but she hasn’t decided yet.  I’m not sure if I want to sell it to anyone else if she decides not to take it.

So how did I end up buying an oven on Tuesday?  I’ve always wanted to.  I had my eyes on a bigger model actually, one that would’ve cost more than twice as much as the one I ended up getting.  But I just never had enough money.  Whenever we go into an appliance/electronics store, the boyfriend and I would check on three things – DSLRs, TVs, and ovens. Last weekend was no different.


We saw this on Sunday, and decided that it’s all gas sister was perfect for us.  Sunday was the first time I checked my ATM after the last payday and I was overwhelmed by how much money I had available. I got my leave conversion, and anniversary bonuse see. 🙂 Rather than slowly see that money go down on clothes, shoes and food, we decided it was better spent on something big. Something significant.

And something that can help us earn on the side 🙂

But the final decision happened on Tuesday after somehow consulting mom, and discussing finances with Alfred (will I be able to pay my bills even after I splurge on this? Do we pay half in cash and half in credit? Do we do installments?).   Even at the mall, walking through the aisles of the Appliance Center at The Block, I was asking Alfred if we were sure.  We could get a 17-inch LCD/flat screen TV for a lower price.  I could buy a Samsung Pixon.   Or an Iphone.

But this baby won out.


So there it is in it’s permanent home. Thank you boyfriend for setting it up for me, and cousin Mice for helping to lift it out from it’s box.  We couldn’t test it today though because the hose to the gas tank is too big.  I can wait a few more days. 🙂

The Sizzling Pepper Steak

Can you guess what this is? You’d probably know what it is if you’ve already been to the Sizzling Pepper Steak at Trinoma.  If you don’t know what it is, well…


Last night was the first time we had dinner at this place and both Alfred and I agree that it was a good experience.  You don’t have to be worried on your first time there, they have a TV that plays demos of how to eat their bestselling dishes served on hot plates.  No, I am not kidding 🙂

The food is served on hot plates, with paper walls shielding the customer from the smoke that’s coming off sizzling meat:


The waitress told me to flip the beef cutlets (I ordered Gyu Saikoro) so that it can be cooked evenly, but I had to take photos and forgot to flip them at the right moment. I thought for sure the meat won’t be well done just the way I like ’em, but surprisingly, they were cooked just right. And I cannot believe how tender the meat was.  As in, like it could melt in your mouth. Haha 🙂


It is served with mongo sprouts, a few slices of carrots and baguio beans on the side.  There’s also a sauce to glaze the meat. It kinda tastes like Tokyo Tokyo’s Beef Mizono, but not really.  Basta, I liked it 🙂  If you want rice to go with your meal though, you’d have to order it separately. I didn’t. What I got instead, was this yummy Chicken Salad. 


We ordered the salad as an after thought, but we were so glad that we did. It is both sweet and salty; the chicken was very tasty.  It’s chicken salad with nuts on top of lettuce, ripe mango slices, grapes, and tomatoes – with yummy sauce. Ugh. LOVE.

Tiramisu was up for dessert, and it was the single disappointing part of the meal.  I don’t think Tiramisu is meant to be frozen delight is it? In my mind Tiramisu is meant to be soft, and even wet. I’m guessing they stored the pan in a freezer, but it didn’t thaw enough before serving. So when you try to get a spoonful you get stuck at one layer… Oh well…

So Alfred and I discussed our eating habits, and how we could actually just order food to share the next time we dine there. We’d definitely get the chicken salad again.  On a more serious note though we should really change our eating habits because even the best diet supplements won’t be able to help us lose weight! Wahaha 🙂

Oh before I forget, so what’s on the first photo? Exhaust vents! They have a lot of those over the tables all around the restaurant. While we were being seated, the waitress warned us not to bump our heads on the exhausts. Alfred and I both reacted – that’s what it is! 🙂  Unluckily for the guy who sat on the table next to us, he hit one of these babies real hard. As in. 

Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wild Life

Now, this post is two weeks late because the event happened two Sundays ago on Mother’s Day.  We didn’t spend it with our moms though – Alfred and I took Esban to the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife for a photo shoot.
Believe it or not, Alfred has never been to Wild Life before. I can’t believe that they didn’t go there on a field trip when he was in grade school?  I’ve been there so many times, but that was long ago.  I realized then though that I confused some of my Wild Life memories with days spent at the old Nayong Pilipino.  

It was a fun day, but I would have been a happier trooper had it not been soooo hot! Even with the dense trees protecting us from the direct heat of the sun, I was still sweating like a pig!  I was frustrated by many of my photos too, I just couldn’t make it work.  Alfred says it’s because I lacked sleep (I came straight from work, and with only two hours of sleep from the night before because that was the day after the BDP class) and was already irritable.  I think he was just trying not to make me feel bad.

We started later than we had planned so we decided to have Liempo Boy for lunch first, before finally heading to our final destination for the afternoon.


Waiting for lunch to be served@Liempo Boy

Upon entering the park grounds, we were welcomed by this rubber tree.  We told Esban what it was, and encouraged him to go ahead and pose in front of it.  Little did I know that this tree’s brothers and sisters were going to have an even bigger role for the day!


Can you see him? Right there in the middle… Here’s a closer look at his wacky face:


Still can't see his face? Click on the image for a larger view

Okay, I’m testing the WP-SV Gallery Plugin that I just installed. The previews are smaller than what I want them to be, but please go ahead and click on the link at the bottom of the box to see a larger view of the pictures in each gallery. 

[svgallery name=”Rubber tree very pretty”]

I’ve always been fascinated by root systems, so these did not escape me:


Now, Alfred told E that Lastikman got his powers from a rubber tree .  Now, I preferred the alien version myself, but Esban’s imagination was definitely stirred by what he was hearing.  Here he was looking for a cozy nook to simulate how Lastikman must have been trapped inside a rubber tree!

[svgallery name=”Esbantree”]

Fine, he doesn’t look trapped, he’s really just enjoying himself.  But you know what he really wanted to try?  Swing from tree to tree a la Tarzan!  We were laughing so hard the whole time. We were sweating, not because it was hot, but because we were having so much fun already!

[svgallery name=”Like Tarzan”]

He enjoyed swinging so much that he refused to go home without stopping by another tree and have another go at it. Problem was, we couldn’t find the one that had vines that would suit his purpose!  In the end, he agreed to leave because he was tired, and he had somewhere else that he needed to be at. 

We took photos of the birds and monkeys too. I’ll share those at a later post, this took way loooonger than I had anticipated. Thanks for sticking it out till the end 🙂


It’s day 1 of our 15 day trial with Sky Broadband. It’s hi-speed Internet cable. I was subscribed to this maybe two years ago but we decided to switch to PLDT DSL because of the savings we’d get for it (since it’s bundled with the phone service).  But their service has been so disappointing, so in two weeks or less we’ll make a decision to finally get rid of it or else just endure the inconsistent service we’ve received.

So far – I love it! My downloads are done in two or three minutes at a time. Sweet! 🙂


I thought I’d be at the mall today, shopping for slippers and some supplies for our Baler trip.  I guess it’s a blessing too that we didn’t go, or else I would have had to practice a lot of self restraint while passing through the section for women’s shoes.  I certainly do not need a new pair, but when I see beautiful comfy footwear, I just can’t help it sometimes 🙂


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