Sunday, March 25, 2012

{Let's Get Cookin'} Tater Tots Recipe

Have you ever heard of Tater Tots? Well, they may sound fancy, but they're just actually "Potato Balls."

So, why are they called Tater Tots? Here is what Google and Wikipedia have to say about Tater Tots:

Tater Tots, a registered trademark for a commercial form of hash browns made by Ore-Ida, are a side-dish made from deep-fried, grated potatoes.[1] Tater Tots are widely recognized by their crispness, cylindrical shape and small size.

These are perfect for kids as snacks, or even for lunch/dinner to match with fried chicken, or whatever you pair mashed potatoes with. The first time I made these, I failed since they were all mushy and absorbed the oil in the pan. However, the next time around, I finally found the way on how to cook them correctly.

There are loads of Tater Tots recipes you could find on the web with a simple Google search, so I am not saying that this is the right recipe. Just wanted to share how I make them for my BabyLove (and for myself, of course!)

  • Potatoes, peeled
  • Garlic Powder (optional)
  • Onion Powder (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Cheese (optional)
  • Flour
  • Egg
  • Bread crumbs
I don't really have measurements for the recipe, as I mostly just approximate on how much I need. This is because potatoes differ in size. So, if you need measurements you can always do a Google search and find a recipe for measurement approximation.

  1. Half-boil potatoes. This is important, they need to be half-boiled. How to know they are half-boiled? I read somewhere that you will know it is half-boiled if you could poke a fork in it but it won't fall off. Potatoes that are completely boiled will fall off the fork and would break in half for being too soft. The reason we want them half-boiled because we will be frying them and they will end up so mushy and will absorb lots of cooking oil.
  2. Once they potatoes are done, peel off the skin. Let cool.
  3. Let's grate! Once the potatoes are cool enough to hold, grate them, just like hash browns. You could also mash them with a fork, but that would really be difficult since they are really tougher than fully-boiled potatoes. I found that grating them is easier. 
  4. Once grated, squeeze out the water from the potatoes. Simply grab a handful and squeeze. Just make sure you have clean hands. ;)
  5. Season with salt and pepper. For extra flavor, you could season also with garlic powder or onion powder. However, kids may not like it, so you can put really little to none at all. Depends how you want it. You can also use regular onions, but the extra water in onions might make the mixture mushy. Trust me, I tried! Haha
  6. Form them into balls. Again, up to you how big you want them to be.
  7. Time to bread them. Typical breading process is Flour, Egg and Breadcrumbs (F.E.B.). Dredge the balls in the flour, coat with the egg, then finally coat with bread crumbs. Simple!
  8. Let's get cooking! If you have a deep fryer, all the better. Simply drop them in and cook until golden brown. If you don't have one, a regular frying pan with oil for frying will do. You just have to turn them over to cook the other side. 
  • Add in a cube of cheese in the center of the balls. They taste so good!
  • For a healthier option, you can opt to bake them instead of frying them. 
  • Refrigerate the grated potato. They tend to become "drier" and are easier to form into balls.
So, there you have it. Sorry, got no step-by-step picture instructions, so I hope the steps are easy for you guys to understand. If any questions, just leave me a message, and I will get back to you. 

Hope you give it a try. If you have tried, do drop me a message, I'd love to hear how you liked them. ;)

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{Lenten Reflections} Prayer for Peace of Mind and Stress

There are just times when we feel so stressed our can't get peace of mind and we end up staying up all night and not getting the sleep we need. I won't deny that I always fall into that feeling over and over again. And when stress gets the best of me, I turn to prayer. Here are two other prayers I always recite when I feel troubled and can't seem to settle down. Hope they would help you as much as it has helped me. God ALWAYS listens.

This is the most famous Serenity Prayer. May it give you peace of mind whenever you feel troubled and anxious.

A Prayer for Peace of Mind
Almighty God, We bless you for our lives, we give you praise for your abundant mercy and grace we receive. We thank you for your faithfulness even though we are not that faithful to you.
Lord Jesus, we ask you to give us all around peace in our mind, body, soul and spirit. We want you to heal and remove everything that is causing stress, grief, and sorrow in our lives.
Please guide our path through life and make our enemies be at peace with us. Let your peace reign in our family, at our place of work, businesses and everything we lay our hands on.
Let your angels of peace go ahead of us when we go out and stay by our side when we return. In Jesus' name, Amen.
 Need to de-stress? A prayer would also be the perfect solution to that. Not even the most expensive ice cream can beat this. 

A Prayer to Heal Stress
Heavenly Father, please grant me peace of mind
and calm my troubled heart. My soul is like
a turbulent sea. I can’t seem to find my balance
so I stumble and worry constantly. Give me the
strength and clarity of mind to find my purpose
and walk the path you’ve laid out for me. I trust
your Love God, and know that you will heal this stress.
Just as the sun rises each day against the dark of
night. Please bring me clarity with the light of God.
In your name I pray, Amen.


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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

{Lenten Reflections} Prayer for Thanks

I know I am a little bit late with a supposed Lenten reflection posts. However, it is never too late to start. I believe that for as long as you are sincere about it, then it doesn't matter if you start late.

Anyway, for the next series of post (which will be shorter than this), I will be posting prayers that have helped me and I have proven effective. Please be reminded that it may not work for the first time. I did pray a lot of times before I was granted what I was praying for. Just keep the faith, and keep hanging on. Because He hears us.

For today's post, I share a prayer of thanks. This is because I have just started a new journey, a new job opportunity. And, God is definitely on my side. Not only did I get a great opportunity, some doors are still open for me. This is simple "Thank You Prayer to God, Just Because" which I got here. You can then add in what your are particularly thankful for, like as for me, my new job.

Thank you God for giving me another day, another chance to become a better individual, another chance to give and experience love. Thank you God for giving me health, for the food you provide, for the awareness you have awaken in me...Thank you for the energy that feeds my soul, the sun that warms our bodies and the air that fills our lungs... Because of you I believe in the good without the bad and the ugly, because of you I am learning to love and accept myself, because of you I believe in believing. My source, stay connected to me today and always, for I need you in order to fullfil my spiritual tasks...God, show me how to love myself, to be able to love others. Help me become the type of person that I would like to befriend, help me forgive myself and forgive others... God, make me a channel of your energy and help me understand. I thank you God for giving me another day, another unused opportunity to do it right. Keep us all close to you and listen to our prayers.Amen. 

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Hate Getting Sick, How I Treat It

Well, it seems like this hot weather has already took a toll on my health. As soon as I got up today, I could already feel a scratchy throat. And as the day drags on, I start feeling my nose getting itchy. Tonight, I've already started sneezing non-stop.

Seems like I got infected by the cold virus from my sick brother. Boys are sometimes neglecting the importance of hygiene, especially when they are sick. They'd touch something I usually use, or sneeze and cough without bothering to cover to mouth or things like that. So, I always, ALWAYS end up catching the cold as well.

The last thing I want is catching a cold. I hated getting sick when I was a kid. I hate it even more now that I have my darling ♥BabyLove♥. Who likes seeing our little one get sick, right? That's the main reason. Another things is that I cannot do things I need to get done, I get irritable, and overly tired, but the most difficult part is that I can't even sleep it off as long as ♥BabyLove♥ is awake. I have to watch over her, feed her when she's hungry, attend to whatever needs she may have.

So, how do I treat a cold? There is no way you can stop it. Getting sick and catching a cold is the body's way of fighting off the virus. It's best to let the body do it's own thing. The only thing we can do is relieve ourselves from discomforts and pain. Here, I will share treat and relieve myself from the pains of getting sick.

  • Drink LOTS of water! It's one thing I do religiously as soon as I catch a cold. Water washes out the toxins, helping your body recover faster.
  • 2x the Vitamin C -- or even MORE. Yes, I take double doses of Vitamin C tablets as soon as I feel a cold coming, next to drinking lots of water. But, not only that. You can increase your Vitamin C intake by eating fruits or drinking juices rich in Vitamin C. 
  • Get rest as much as you can. If you are like me with a 1-year-old who's so active and have to be watched over, then you may find it hard. What I personally do is that when she falls asleep, I take the advantage of catching some sleep as well. 
  • Have someone help you watch over your little one if you are a single mom like myself, if available. Sometimes, we just don't have the energy to watch over them ourselves and need to rest for just a couple of hours. If you find it hard to catch some rest to restore your energy, if someone at home is around, have them look after your son/daughter for just a little while. That should relieve you for a little while. 
  • Sore throat is one thing I hate the most! I can't eat, I have trouble swallowing, etc. This remedy of mine may sound crazy, but it WORKS great for me. Are you ready??? *drumroll*....... Pour salt directly on your sore throat! I know, I know, this sounds like torture. But believe me, it works. I found this on a website a year or 2 ago. You can find it here. It may taste awful, but it really does work. Well, there's a trick on how to not suffer from the unpleasant taste, and everything is on the website I linked to. There's nothing more I can say about how "great" this remedy is. Haha! Instant relief, really.
  • Don't forget to disinfect things you've touched, places you've stayed at around your home especially if you sneeze or cough, to make sure that other members of the family won't get infected. Most especially your kids. Throw away used napkins, wash your hands right away, and spray a disinfectant spray on places you've stayed at.
Well, that's just a few of the things I always do. I am no expert, just sharing what I do to relieve myself from the pains of having colds and getting sick. I hope this helps you in any way. 

Wishing you all good health! =D

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

"Shutter" Day Share! {March 15, 2012}

So, this will be a new series on my blog posts to make sure I make it a point to post something regularly. In these series of posts, I will be sharing a photo of anything significant at the moment, or any photo I wish to share. I will be posting every Saturday, hence, the title 'Shutter Day Share' - 'shutter' pertaining to that from the camera. Haha! I may sound corny, but hey, it's all I could think of and it makes sense anyway. Haha!

So, for today's photo, I will be sharing a photo of my BabyLove who seems to have a potential of being "kikay" or vain like me!

Yep, she's holding my bottles of nail polish! Haha! And she gets angry when I get them from her. She just woke up from her nap, and I have just finished doing my nails. And it's the first thing she sees and wouldn't want to let go of them. =P

Well, hope you like this photo share of mine. Hopefully it gives you an insight of a day in the life of me and my family. :)

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Cebu Pacific Booking Woes

Summer is just weeks away, and we can definitely feel the weather start to get warmer and warmer, each passing day. And as soon as March steps in, the first thing that comes into my mind is the beach! Every year, the family always make it a point that we get to go out on a vacation at least twice during vacation.

And, if you are like me who's keeping track of seat sales at the airlines, you probably have noticed that more and more promos are being offered, in time for the summer! So, me and my mom decided we'd book a trip (although it's not for summer at all. We were planning for February or March of 2013). But then, Cebu Pacific ruined my excitement.

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Day Out At The 17th Hot Air Balloon Festival

Isn't it just wonderful? I always look forward to the annual Philippine Hot Air Balloon Festival at Clark, Pampanga. I am lucky enough that I live nearby, so I can go yearly with not much difficulty. For some reason, I never tire of watching the hot air balloons set off, the ultralight planes doing some exhibitions, and all that. And so, I decided this would be the perfect day out with my BabyLove. For more info on what this event is all about, click here.

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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Dealing with stress and frustrations

Frustrations, stress, we all come to the point when we feel like just breaking down to cry. This serves true when I need to work and my ♥ BabyLove ♥ is making tantrums and I need to work or so tired that I wish I could just sleep. At some point, no matter how patient we are in trying to handle the situation as cool as possible, we tend to just feel that everything's crumbling down. So, what do you do when you feel frustrated? Maybe some of the things I do might help some of you.

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