HAPPY NEW YEAR ! 2012 !!!!!

Hello ! Hey , HAPPY NEW YEAR ! !

Gosh, here I go again, apologizing for neglecting my blog. I can’t make school as my excuse this time coz  I’m on vacation.  (=_=) # Well, first off,  I ‘ve been given longer hours at work, and that’s good.  I need the dough for school and my European trip this summer.  Oh, I’ve written about my Euro trip , right?  Five months to go. When I first wrote about it, it was 8 months to go. Time does fly, doesn’t it?  So, how was everyone’s Christmas ? This year, my family’s Christmas celebration was pretty quiet. There weren’t any guests, just us family. As per family tradition, we went to Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. ( Midnight Mass was at 11 PM ) Then after the Mass, we had a simple midnight dinner we call  Noche Buena ( or is it  called Media Noche ? ) . It was just hot chicken /rice porridge and ensaimada ( bread , also called brioche ). It’s melt in your mouth Philippine  bread, topped with butter , sugar and  shredded Edam cheese. We call Edam cheese Queso de Bola.



I started writing this on Dec. 31, 2011. It’s now Jan. 5, 2012. I feel so guilty abandoning my blog like this, but I promise to write more often this year. Make that my New Year’s Resolution.  I’ve been busy doing things that I won’t be able to do anymore  when school opens in 3 weeks……. like hanging out with friends, going to parties, playing video games , and reading mangas. Gosh, I haven’t even read Eragon yet.

So, where was I ?

Oh, yeah, my  holiday activities….. Well, Christmas dinner was just family. We didn’t have guests this year ( that is, if I even consider my Sis’ BF and BFF ” guests “. They’re like family already… this year, he was in San Diego with his Dad, and BFF was in Ohio with her grandma ) . There wasn’t much food compared to last year.

This year…….

As usual, we had eggrolls( lumpia ) and  caldereta ( beef  stew), ham, paella ( Spanish rice ), galantina ( fancy name for chicken loaf ), roast pork, sauteed mushrooms with veggies, and desserts. I’m proud to say I made the paella, my first time to cook that.


Another view of the spread

Galantina and sauteed mushrooms

Desserts ( leche flan, cassava cake, fruit salad , cheesecakes, chocolate cakes, pastries, and muffins ) The small pastries have sweetened coconut in them. In the Philippines, they are called pan de coco.

Cheesecake and chocolate cake ( bought from Costco)………. Oh, by the way, do you see that thing , on upper right hand of the pic above ?  It’s Afghan bread….. it’s flat and it’s 3 feet long, and tastes better than regular sliced bread. And do you see the one on the left? That’s pineapple sweet bread. Sooo good.

So, that’s it, our Christmas day meal.

I was planning to post pics of our New Year’s Day celebration on a separate post but I guess it’s too late now. Anyway,  we didn’t prepare much this year.

So, do I love cooking? Well, I did cook most of the food  seen in the photos, especially the paella, but I can’t say I love cooking.  When my mother was diagnosed with Diabetes and high blood pressure, my sister and I had to take charge of household duties.  Cooking is not a rocket science, anyways, and I’m lucky Mom has tons of recipes that have  already been taste -tasted and rated 5 stars.  You see, before my family immigrated here to the US, Mom had a thriving catering business in the Philippines. Three days before we immigrated to the US, Mom  still managed to cater  for 300 people. It was a convention…….. catering was AM snacks, lunch, Pm snacks, and dinner. I still remember that. It was rather chaotic at our house, so many people coming and going, preparing food. The whole place was like an assembly line.

Now, our New year’s day feast: There was less food on the table. That was okay though. At least we didn’t have to pig out and eat the same food for 3 days.

Almost the same thing . We had  noodles ( pancit ) instead of paella, roast pork ( I love the roast pork, with all that crunchy skin goodness ! Ugh ! So unhealthy ! ) and I made empanada ( meat turnovers )and turrones. ( wrapped fried banana ). We also had mini quiches and wanton soup.

Empanada ( meat turnover…. sauteed ground chicken with potatoes and raisins )

Turrones ( wrapped banana then fried….. it also has brown sugar and jack fruit in it ).

Mini quiches and OMG, that cake ! It’s called Fruit Basket and the taste was sublime ! Ah, but it was a $ 36 – cake, so I ‘m sure the baker saw to it it was worth the price.

Wonton soup ( I made this )\

Ahahaha ! Here’s a horrible random pic of me on New year’s Day. I didn’t get to sleep at all. I got home at 3 AM  from a New Year’s Day party , then cooked and baked the whole morning  for our New Year’s lunch. .,  I looked like a hag in this pic and intentionally picked my nose when Mom took the picture. Bleh. Good thing it’s blurry.

So, what did you guys get for Christmas ? I got a a pair of gold hoop earrings and necklace with my birthstone, and a Wii video dance game JUST DANCE 3  from my parents, a gorgeous leather jacket from my brother, and a nice sweater from sis. My best friend gave a me a nice pair of earrings too. Wow ! I just love Just Dance 3. It’s like having a fun exercise and at the same time,  learning awesome dance moves. There’s another one, Michael Jackson Experience, that I’m going to buy , too. Although they say the dance routine is really difficult to follow. Ha ! I’m sure it is.

Well, to be honest, talking about so much food and material gifts makes me a bit uncomfortable. This is not the real spirit of Christmas, you know. There are millions of children who are starving and suffering  at this very moment. I feel kind of guilty……………  Oh, my, this reminds me again of the story The Little Match Girl.  ~.~  But what can I do ? I just want them to know that amidst this merriment and celebration, I stop and think about them…… that , at least there’s one in this world who has not forgotten .  The truth is, not everyone is happy this Christmas.  Mom;s favorite first cousin died on Dec. 24. She literally died in the arms of her husband while waiting for the ambulance. At first, she was clinging to him, then she went limp. It was so sad.  Then my sister’s ex- boyfriend died from brain tumor on Dec.15.  I heard my sister sobbing in the bathroom . When she got out, she was holding the glass cell phone stand that he gave her and her eyes were really swollen.  It was really a sad story between him and my sister.  In fact, when he was diagnosed 2 1/2 years ago, it was only my sister , aside from his family, that he told about his condition.  Well, it was  a short bittersweet relationship , and he told her she was the only girl  he ever loved but he was glad that she broke up with him , because 6 months after the break -up, he was diagnosed with cancer. Oh, man, my tears are falling now. There’s another sad  story I’d like to talk about, but I  don’t want to feel any  sadder than what I’m feeling at the moment.

Oh, I got 3 more Versatile Blogger Award…. one from Koopa , Viv, and trjensen…. my 7th, 8th, and 9th awards. I’ll acknowledge this on my next post. I really gotta publish this now.

This is all for now. PEACE . And be happy !

68 responses to this post.

  1. I love the foodie, oh my, all are yummy, happy new year to you and to the family… cheers to 2012… 🙂


  2. Same to you, wilofheart ! And I promise to read all of you this year ! ( crosses heart )

    Happy 2012 !


  3. Posted by sweetopiagirl on January 7, 2012 at 12:30 am

    Reblogged this on Inspiredweightloss.


  4. Everything looks so delicious, especially the Paella and the Empanadas. I had them as a kid and now i wish i could have some more lol 🙂 best of luck on everything this year 🙂


    • The paella and empanadas are really easy to make. You can make them yourself. ( Eh,. For the empanada, I bought the frozen dough from the supermarket, he he he. I still need to practice making doughs. )

      Cheers !


      • The empanadas still look great 😀 i gotta go look in our local supermarket again, cause the ones they sell look more like Calzones and i am horrible at baking so 😀


        • Don’t buy the one for puff pastry. Buy the one for pies. I made a mistake. I bought the ones that puff, lol. And the filling is just ground chicken, potatoes ( diced small, of course, onion ( sliced small) and raisins. Season to your taste.


          • No puff, gotcha 🙂 back in Chile, when i was a kid there was a restaurant that made Seafood Empanadas as well as Chicken Empanadas. He’d make his own dough and stuff it, then he would bake it in a stone oven he made himself and boy was it ever goooood! 😀


  5. You make me really hungry looking at those yummy pictures! It’s great to see you again. Happy 2012!


  6. Where are the pictures?

    Looking forward to your trip and experience, do share us the experience everything 🙂


  7. Oops sorry saw the picture, in my email where I was reading I couldn’t able to see the pictures :)))


  8. Posted by Zoe @ Pantry and Fridge on January 7, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Glad you had a good celebration and have been relaxing a bit during your break from school. 🙂
    You’re feast looks amazing!! Seriously, you should (when you find the time, that is, haha) post some of those recipe’s of mom’s!! You seem like an amazing cook and have some great family dishes. I know I would like that!
    Sorry to hear of your sad stories… And all of the hungry children 😦 Chin up!


  9. I shouldn’t have read this. Now I am starving.

    The leather jacket sounds swell. The trick to them seems to be to be getting a size too small. I had to learn that the hard way by now having a gigantic one. At least it was only $10 and from Goodwill. I really hope someone didn’t die in it…

    Happy New Year!


    • ” I really hope someone didn’t die in it…”

      LOL ! ! Someone told me to always check out the clothes we buy at Goodwill. A lot of them are from dead people’s wardrobe. He he he

      Cheers, Mooselicker !


  10. christmas eve midnight dinner is noche buena while the new year one is media noche. i did not know another name for queso de bola until now. it is a type of cheddar right? your table looks amazing. i’m curious about the afghan bread and the pineapple one. i wish you get enough money for your euro trip too! i got books for the holidays, and stuff for my bb. glad you updated your blog!


    • Oh, right. I always interchange the two. Hahah.

      Yep, the other name for queso de bola is Edam cheese.

      $ 500 will be enough, I hope. Everything is paid for, and Mom says there won’t be time to shop, except maybe in London and paris where we are given free time to be on our own.

      Books are good. I used to get books for Christmas. ( I was given 3 Twilight books years ago, which I haven’t read. I couldn’t go past Chapter 5. )


      • i feel envious of the euro trip already! i wish you have all the fun there though! i’ll wait for your stories. my man gave me an ebook of the entire series. did not even open it. 😆


    • I’ll post pics and describe the place as detailed as possible, as if you were there yourself. ^___^

      I wonder…. how come the Twilight series is so immensely popular when almost everybody I talk to doesn’t like it at all. I have not met anyone, nor read about it from fora, who likes it. There are million fans out there, right? So where are they ? lol


  11. As usual, your blog is entertaining and informative. I would not have thought that those foods would be included in a Philippine Christmas dinner, but then I have to admit that I don’t know that much about Philippine culture. This is one of the reasons I like your blog. I am enlightened every time.
    Promise us that you will blog while on your vacation with pictures…


    • I promise to write about my trip, Lee Devine ! I’ll even bring a notebook to write down everything that I see, my impressions, etc. I tend to forget stuff.

      I love to talk about Philippine culture, and I hope I’m not making any mistakes, or giving false impressions. I think it’s okay too to make mistakes…. mistakes come from a different perspective, so I hope some of my Philippine readers will correct me.


  12. Happy new year…… love the variety of Delicious food yummy 🙂


  13. (Sorryyyy..i had been playing with the settings and i made my blog private somehow lol…it’s public now ^^)


  14. The food has made me so hungry… Love the pic of you at 3am lol

    😉 happy new year.


    • LOL Good thing the pic is blurry. If I didn’t tell I was picking my nose, no one would have noticed.

      happy new year, Princess laila ! Cheers !


  15. I’m excited about your Euro trip! 🙂 Do you have itineraries set yet? 🙂

    Love love the pictures. So many Pinoy foods and I’m reminded of our Media Noche as well 🙂


    • Yes, I have the itinerary all set. It’s actually a packaged deal. We’re expecting a totally regimented tour , where we have to wake up early, be at scheduled meeting points , eat breakfast in 15 minutes, lunch in 30,… Aaargh, you know the drill. I guess the tour operators are pro at this. we get to see as many places as possible.

      Filipinos cuisine has amazing variety of desserts. I wanted to cook puto and pichi- pichi.


      • Wow. That sounds like Lizzie Mcguire’s Euro trip with all those hurried lunch and breaks. I want to go backpacking in Europe though 🙂

        You totally need to sample pichi pichi with cheese as the topping. If you visit the Philippines, look for Amber’s Best immediately. The best barbecue, palabok and pichi pichi EVER. :))


        • I wish it was that way, too, but I’ve got 2 elderly ladies with me… my mom and aunt !

          I have to buy lye, that’s an ingredient in picji-pichi. I forgot to buy that when were at the Flipino store. I’m not even sure of they sell that.

          Where is Amber’s Best ?


  16. It looks like a lot of food nevertheless. I’d like to see a pic of the previous year’s buffet table 🙂


  17. Oh! I forgot to greet you Happy New Year!
    You celebrate Noche Buena without any visitors or relatives? I wonder how Kyoko and her Family ate those food. They’re all yummy, there are lots of sweets and dessert, too.


  18. Posted by Warrior Poet Wisdom on January 11, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    What a magnificent feast! Touching write, thanks for sharing with such sincerity and honesty.
    Peace & grace,


  19. The food looks fabulous, thanks for sharing, I loved reading about the different breads. Don’t ever worry about taking a vacation, everyone deserves time off! Happy New Year!


  20. After reading… Hunger strikes me! Ahihi!


    • Hi, there. Wow, it’s been awhile ! I barely had time to write a post, much less read up on my favorite blogs, But this is my one and only resolution…. find time to read …. anyways, Manigong Bagong Taon, diwangtanglaw.


  21. nyaaaan!~ the foods look very delicious! i wanna eat some! ^_^


    • hahaha ! We still have some ham left. I’ll make you a ham sandwich. Hey jenine, I love it when you write about mangas and animes. Write more often, k?


  22. Every time I come to read your blog, I’m always salivating with all the food pictures you have up these days. Happy New Year! Hope your 2012 will be very prosperous.

    I had a similar Christmas like yours. We had a Filipino style family Christmas party with all the food. We had Lumpia Shanghai, Palabok, stuffed chicken, and many other yummy things. You’re so lucky you got Just Dance for the Wii! One of the many games on my list to get. I know once I get it, I’ll be using it as my main workout regimen at home. 😉


    • I love palabok. I wanted to cook that for New Year, but my sister’s boyfriend , for some reason, cannot eat noodles with fishy taste . He has acquired the Filipino taste, but never the fish sauce and smoked fish taste.

      OMG, you just have to buy Just Dance for the Wii ! Awesome moves, great exercise !


  23. Looks absolutely dee-lish (*_*)


  24. I love all your food pics woman! I can never read your blog when I am hungry because it is just torture!


  25. This one is a delicious post. 🙂 I am really feeling hungry after reading this one.
    Wish you a very happy new year to you and your family Ren.


  26. Wow you post lots of food lately… (It’s been a while since the last time i visited your blog ok 😉 )

    Ok this is weird and off topic, but that last picture of yellow blue fabric someone sitting on (is that you?) it has the same pattern as my old bed sheet…


    • Hi, Farah ! !

      Yes ! My mom bought that in the Philippines. Maybe it was made in Indonesia ? Or made in the Philippines and exported to Indonesia ? It was so cheap, something like $ 5, so even though it was bulky, Mom couldn’t resist. And yeah, that ‘s yours truly. ^_^ #


  27. Cheers to 2012, young lady! All the best!


  28. Great food! And you seem to be an incredible cook!


  29. Bit late, but yeah, happy new year, wish all your dreams come true in the coming year (and special emphasis on you getting a boyfriend :D)
    Once again, I must say the food looks yummy, though the mention of family made me sad though, had to spend the Christmas alone this time… (one of the reason for that gloomy blog post)

    P.S. I’m done with Eragon, want some spoilers ?? 😀


  30. Posted by WordsFallFromMyEyes on December 31, 2013 at 6:41 am

    I can’t imagine missing that much sleep & being okay!! You did well.

    So, this was last year… 😉


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