Closer to the Weekend

I can’t believe it’s Thursday tomorrow already.. Angel’s last day at day care, the boss returns from California (but I still don’t see him which is good and bad at the same time..), it means I’m closer to my long weekend now (4th of July is Tuesday!), and I probably have a short day on Friday and I’m keeping my fingers crossed the boss sends me home earlier than usual.  (2PM would be good!)

I just finished cooking Angel’s viand for tomorrow, Alan is pecking at his laptop e-mailing his boss.  I’m blogging.  (Can’t do it at work anymore because all blog-related sites have been blocked!) 

We had Tempura tonight, by the way, complete with panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) — thanks for noting the mispelling, Dheena..  It would’ve been great to use my Camaron Rebosado recipe for the batter, but I can’t find the cookbook where I have it.  I should’ve remembered it in my personal website but I had a spark of genius and decided to use some buttermilk pancake mix instead.  (It’s one of those supposedly gourmet mixes which didn’t quite meet my standards.. )  However, instead of adding a whole egg, I only added the egg whites which was what my rebosado recipe required.  Then I dipped the shrimp in panko and fried it.  Voila!  Shrimp Tempura..

Alan and I shied away from the Thai Chili sauce that we resort to when I don’t have the energy to actually make the dipping sauce (complete with mirin, etc.) — but tonight, I just had it with mayo and ketchup which tasted great.  Yummy!

Updated my Blogroll

I was principally updating to change Jerome’s URL for Bridget Jones is a Man and I thought I’d also add two blogs of a friend from high school (Delightfully Evil) and a cousin of mine who has a medical degree but who would rather concentrate on being a writer (The Orange Express) — something that strikes close to home.  They are, after all, now part of the chain of blogs I try to visit every once in a while.  Check them out!

Craft Report from the Scrapbooking Newbie

Scrapbooking is something that I have enjoyed immensely but which has been a real learning experience for me.

I started right after my trip to Paris last year in February as I endeavored to document that very memorably journey I took to the City of Lights.  It was good that I refused to splurge and spend on scrapbook kits and elements.  Instead, I used internet resources to find scrapbook sites for ideas and paper and elements for printing.  I accummulated a lot of digital scrapbook paper along the way and have stashed them in folders in a bin I have.   I started making my embellishments myself.  I would stay up late “piecing” or “stitching” together paper to make the 12×12 layout I had chosen.  I had the pictures, I had the elements, but I was lost as to layout and embellishments.

Towards the latter part of the year, I started a scrapbook for Mom chronicling her first months with Angel here in New York.  This turned out to be a better vehicle for creative expression as I became better versed at coordinating scrapbook kits to make them more visually pleasing.  While I used printed photographs for some pictures, I was able to create layouts with enlargements and some photo effects.  The scrapbook is essentially finished and now just needs the journal entries and dates for captions.  I meant to bring this home to Manila but never did.  (Blame it on the dozens of other things Mom preferred to prioritize bringing home.)  I hope to document the scrapbook by taking photographs once done for my own records.  (Photographing the layouts, though, is another matter altogether.)

Since I started scrapbooking, I look at paper and textures in a different way now.  I cannot wait to go to IKEA to get more fabric swatches which I can use as embellishments.  I had cut out the letters with the darker shades and stitched them onto the lighter reds.  (I will take a photograph and post it here.)  Every time I go into a Home Depot or paint store, I pick out swatches and get 6-8 of my chosen color because they make such good tag materials.  When I go to the dollar store now, I look at the twines and ribbons to check out what I could plop onto a scrapbook layout like the twine I featured a while back. 

Except for purchasing the scrapbook itself, additional page fillers, and some paper stock (colored but undecorated), as well as a self healing mat and some cutters, I have kept my expenses to a minimum.  I’m starting to experiment on doing my own digital elements (such as the summer photo overlay of Angel’s photo in a recent post) and will be toying with doing my own alphas (alphabets) through Paint.  Taking it a project at a time, I am amazed at all the free resources out there.  One can never run out of sources for more ideas, each more inspiring than the next.