Random Recipes (^_^)

Our Food This Week (^_^)!

Saturday night (7/16): Hubby cooked chicken thighs (4 pieces). After boiling and dumping yucky blood water, he then added chicken broth and shitake mushrooms (from Costco, in a plastic jar). Then boiled Juen-Yii brand noodles (99 Market) and we had yummy homemade Chicken thigh noodle soup! (Sometimes we add fish/pork balls to soup, or dried scallops for sweeter taste).

[Weather in CA: 85 degrees this week (*_*)!! Hot!]

Sunday night (7/17): Hubby loves white-cut chicken (Chinese style chicken) dipped in diced garlic + soy sauce. So he boiled chicken thigh with bones (8 pieces, also purchased from Costco), dumped out blood water. Then he used a new pot putting chicken thigh inside new water + chicken broth to cook some more (to drink soup, 2 ways to eat!).

Put fully cooked thighs into fridge for 15-20 minutes to cool. Then take out and eat with garlic (diced) put in small bowl with soy sauce. The soup (now chicken thigh soup including broth) is yummy and good for Seattle cold weather to warm you. hubby and kids’ bodies.

We would eat 1 veggie dish to go along w/meat dish, so that night I cooked spinach from H-Mart. I always do the same: Peeled, garlic cloves cut in ½, stir fry veggie, sometimes add a little chicken broth and some salt, and a little bit of white pepper. It’s hot here this week, so I bought Korean Kim Chee to go along with the dinner, very appetizing! Wish I can learn to make it (but too lazy, haha).

Lunch (7/18) ~ The next day hubby went to work, and I was lazy to cook new dishes. So with the thigh broth (from Sunday night), I just added Costco wontons (very good! Chicken and Cilantro flavored mini wontons!), fish dumplings, and some spinach to the brother. Then boiled noodles and that was our lunch! (We sometimes also buy Dah-Jong Peanuts & “Red-Burn” [hong shao] Eel in a can from 99 Market or H-Mart to go with our meals).

(Monday night 7/18 ~ we just ate leftovers from the night before)

Tuesday 7/19~ Tonight, there was nothing to eat, so I had to cook (*_^). I found a bag of ground pork (~1.5 or 2 pounds), so I defrosted them cooked it with diced garlic cloves and some sliced Shitake mushrooms (from Costco, soak mushrooms in water for 45 minutes beforehand). As I was stirring, I added a good amount of soy sauce and some rice wine. Then I added sliced celeries (you can also add sliced bamboo strips, or sour-pickled ‘swan tsai’) and Monopoly dice-sized ‘Red Burn’ (hong shao) Tofu pieces (or alternatively you can use 5-Fragrant ‘Woo Shan’ Tofu Gan cut in strips) and stir fry some more.

Finally, as the meat/tofu is getting brown, add some water, lots of Oyster Sauce (generous amount, taste to see if flavor seeped into tofu and meat) and some chicken broth (if too dry). Cover pot with lid and let flavor sink in. Small fire for about 7-8 min. and you’re ready to eat!

For veggie dish ~ Stir Fry ‘Empty-heart Veggie’ (Kong Shing Tsai). I put in garlic cloves, stir fry with veggie, add salt, a tad of chicken broth, some “Hondashi fish powder” (very yummy!), and a little white pepper. Ready to eat!

Side dish (‘cuz it’s so hot again, 86 degrees!) ~ Home made Pickled Cucumbers (everything from H-Mart)

Slice cucumbers, add some diced up garlic cloves, add some Vinegar (used for sushi/California roll type), then some Sesame Oil and a little bit of soy sauce. Mix, put in fridge for 15-20 minutes ready to eat! (^_^)

This is Caleb’s favorite dish! We went to Keelong, Taiwan for mission trip and one of the children’s ministry mom (who worked at &-Eleven) in Taiwan gave us the secret recipe!

This can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner (with or without rice, not too salty).
The mom in Taiwan gave us the secret recipe! Shhh….this is the way they make them at 7-Eleven! Try them!

Since we go to 7-Eleven a lot in Taiwan, Caleb fell in love with Tea Leaf Eggs! (And daddy spoiled him by cooking this every 2 weeks, so he eats this for breakfast most days! I need to get him to try new foods to survive in college/marriage!)

Use Da-Tung Rice Cooker and you will have yummy eggs the following morning! The rest of the eggs you can put in Tupperware and refridge. The sauce from the tea leaf eggs can be used to cook/boil with Red Burn Tofu or Five Fragrant Tofu, Chicken heart/gizzard, Seaweed (from 99 market, boil out the salt in seaweed first) or any Loo Way (marinated dishes) you like! (^_^) Then you won’t have to cook meat dish for the next day or so.

This morning I had my usual milk tea powder mixed w/boiling water….in the very comfy to lip feel of Starbucks mug by my beloved sister Amy! Shay Shay!


Happy beginning of Summer Vacation! Kung Fu Panda & Quacker Duck (^_^)

Today is Day 3 of PandaMania VBS! Woohoo! (^_^)

Happy Summer! It's the first week of Summer Vacation for the kids and so far we watched Kung Fu Panda 2, visited countless fast food joints, and joined our local church's "PandaMania Vacation Bible School"! (^_^) I even 'tricked' the kids into doing the housework for me today, bad mama! I told the kids that we'll do a "Wipe Out Competition" ~ They Wipe, and I sit Out!

I can't believe that Quacker has been here for a whole month now! She arrived on May 28th late night and we now can't imagine life without her!

How could a little feathered 3-pound bundle touch so many hearts in so few days? During these 4 weeks, we taught her how to dig for bugs, snails, slugs;  eat earthworms; dive for minnow fishes (thank you Petsmart!), and be hugged without protest (thanks to Abbie's perseverance)! We may bring her to our church VBS this August, headed by dear hubby! The theme is "Home Town Nazareth ~ Where Jesus was a Kid!" I'm sure there were ducks walking the streets during those days!

After the first week, hubby told us that we can keep duckie. At that time, I knew that she is here to stay! I just have to keep my eyes on her so she doesn't run off, fly away, or get retrieved by our neighbor's Laborador! Good thing our parrots Kobee and Jubee didn't get jealous, and were still chatty after their new waterfowl sibling joined us!

Happy End of June, everyone!


Duckie Soup for the Frazzled Soul 心靈鴨湯 #2 ~ The Prodigal Duck!

Duckie flew away this morning!! Too much practice flaps like this!

It is only 8 days since Quacker squeezed all 4 pounds of her little body into our lives....and I thought our daily routine has just begun to take a semi-predictable form...

Until today....

After starting my "Duckie Soup for the Soul" 鴨湯 online book.....2 days ago....she almost made me end my book (of just ONE chapter) today! This morning I was taking out the trash cans....and she followed me as quickly as her wobbly little duck feet could take her....And in a moment of panic, sensing she may not catch up to me....

Quacker shows off her flight feathers as she stretches her wings!

I heard a big helicopter-like flutter....and she propelled over my head (and I could sense cold air + quacking above me), glided past my college buddy Dzung's side wall, and landed  on his side yard/driveway!

This is Quacker duck happily escaping! (Photo courtesy of yahoo)

I ran over next door to be greeted by Quacker, who also ran towards me hastily! She was probably surprised that she could fly (but actually, after 8 days of wing yoga and practice flaps, I should have known she's on the brink of lift off)!

Duckie grooms herself proudly after her morning flight, unbeknownst to the fact that
I was already sharpening my scissors for the "GREAT CLIP"!

So off I go to my google search of "How to clip your duck's wing". Abbie woke up in time to  hear me retell the story of our flyaway pet. After observing Quacker carefully, she told me, "Quacker looks sad today.....maybe you scold her too harshly?" The she helped me video as I try to catch Quacker and clip her wings!

What did I learn today?

1) Cherish the Moment ~ you never know how long you have someone (feathered or not) with you!

2) Don't Procrastinate ~ sometimes it's too late when something so important needs to be done/taught now ~ like clipping wings (and trimming bad habits) before my baby grows up too fast and leaves home! Or simply....telling our family and friends just how much we love them (and forgive them....if tensions exist)!

Loved ones, our Heavenly Father loves us and wants to have a close relationship with us. If He speaks to your heart, seize the moment and don't ignore Him! My good friend who batled depression since teenage years....received Christ 9 months before she passed away, at the young age of 40. I am comforted knowing that she is with the Lord today. With our future in God's hands, we have hope knowing that we will be with our Lord, and we will reunite with our believing loved ones! Let us cherish each day, and each person in our lives, as our days and health on this earth are unpredictable and fleeting, until Christ returns!


Duckie Soup for my Beloved's Soul 心靈鴨湯 #1 ~ When Ugly Duckling Got Saved!!

Our daily "Hug" and "Head Massage" Session! (Self-snapped lop-sided picture)

Today is the 7th day since we've had Quacker, our 8.5 week old Mallard duckling! When she arrived 7 days and 12 hours ago, she was not a big hit with hubby. In fact, he railed at me from upstairs as we introduced Quacker into our home (after sleeping in the hallway inside her crate all night). She's not an indoor duck, but I thought it'd be good to kick off her 'first morning' home with a hearty indoor welcome!

Our brownish, loud, slightly wild, sloppy poopy bird scrambled around the dining room floor, quacking and screaming at everyone she encountered! Hubby hollered to get her outside, and it began to rain precisely at the moment Abbie, Quacker and I got jettisoned out into the yard ....

I almost returned duckie home the next day, thinking we can't have her here if hubby's not completely ready (though Abbie and I've been hinting for several days of our upcoming duckie-sitting mission)! Of course, after 7 days, the situation took a complete 180 degree turn!

Today ~ still on a Sunday morning, we let out and played with duckie outside in the yard. She saw a spider strolling across the lawn and ran full force and snatched the critter into her bills, nibbling contently! Hubby was amazed, and declared that 'she's a keeper' if she could eat these pests ESP. his most dreaded enemy ~ Mr. Cricket! So apparently, Quacker has made her way into our home...and our hearts!

Duckie was a cast-away, an "Easter photo studio prop", in fact! She was mail-ordered for $4 by the photo shop to take holiday pictures with kids, then destined to be thrown into the wilderness with little chance of survival. The farmer's wife learned of her fate and kept her and 3 siblings from their formidable fate.

Quacker and siblings (and Ursula the white duck) at 4 weeks!

Through Craiglist 'farm and garden' section, I learned that Farmer Lana was looking for "Duck Sitter"! What perfect opportunity for us to bring a special life into our family (as Abbie's been begging for one for months!), and learn to appreciate God's creation (and supplying our own eggs....if she lays!)

So last Saturday night, duckie found herself in a crate, carried to our home as a 'party favor' after we attended the farmer's 9 yr old daughter's birthday party! The farm she lived in had lots of animals, but it was a bit crowded and ducklings ignored people and only flocked together. Her life changed dramatically in the past few days, and for an 8 week old duckling, she taught me a lot!

Quacker ~ 2 hours before we took her home

We all, like Quacker, have waddled astray. We are alike in many ways than we can imagine! It may be our ill-fate as castaways in a family which ignores/overprotects us, our not-so-appealing looks, our health issues robbing us of joy and hope, our poopy attitudes/relationship tensions with others, our weird temper, or the mess we get ourselves into, separating us from the love we could have shared with our loved ones.

Whatever it may be, however miniscule we feel, remember that there is someone out there who loves you so much that He willingly and without any regret gave His life for you. Even if you feel like you're only worth a couple bucks, or half a penny (as sparrows were in the olden days), remember that your Father, your Creator, knows your every thought and how many hairs are on your head.

Milk from a cup!

After duckie arrived, she lived a life of Princess Quacker. She is handfed by servant girl Abbie, with delicacies like Uncle Peter's gourmet pasta, premium Costco salad, chinese opo and empty-heart veggie, fresh milk in a cup, sweet cherries and home-grown blueberries!

Chinese veggies ~ Yum!

She has her own "Safety 1st" tub, a brand new pink Toys "R" Us kiddie pool, fresh hay and pine bedding, and daily hug-sessions and head/neck massages!

I love my tub!!

When we respond to the care and protection of our Heavenly Father, our life takes a turn for the best! When we were destined for depression and rejection, Christ comes into our life and takes us under His wing. We may not be pretty-looking or 100% healthy, but we are joyful, confident, and relaxed, knowing that the One who made us, gave His life for us, and loves us unconditionally, will take care of our every need.

He even counts our hairs AND collects them in a precious box (just as Abbie did with Quacker's feathers!), to enjoy and treasure, not because of our beauty, but because of His love and affection for us!!!
Abbie collects and counts the feathers which fell from duckie's tummy!