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Halo Halo – Mix & Think Differently

Yummy "Ube" Purple Yam Ice Cream

Yummy "Ube" Purple Yam Ice Cream

Isabella Rose

Isabella Rose


A Panamanian Mother

There seems no greater love than that of a mother’s for her child.

While in Panama City last April, tadalafil thumb I sat across a special woman who epitomized that wonder.  It was clear to me what mattered to her the most.  The little nuances from her every gesture proved the depth of her love in a role that was not negotiable, viagra and mine was a beautiful opportunity to have watched her in her element.  Her son was well behaved–his choice, a testament of trust and educated honing from his mother. And from our few exchanged glances, he exuded a confidence within, smiling easily as he said hello and then, goodnight, after we altogether watched the cultural show in a restaurant not far from our hotel.

Surprisingly, we got seated with the locals.  My Spanish must have been so good, the Panamanians placed us in the balcony, instead of the center floor reserved for tourists.  But truly, beyond nationality, I felt just like her.  In fact, she made me remember all the precious times I shared with the boys when they were as young as her son.  Suddenly that deep sense of connection, a commitment of self, released in the highest form of creation called “child”–touched me, as if what I was observing was me, all over again.

Herewith, to share that special moment that I was happy to have documented, I wish you a very happy Mother’s Day, if you are indeed a mom.  Brunch will be cherished today over at Amaya at The Grand Del Mar– a restaurant that my good friend Fei Celestine and I frequent.  In fact, Fei and her husband Pierre will be there as well, along with Elliott, my boys’ long time friend who is like a brother to them and a son to us.  Nate, (another family friend) who has lived with us for a few months now, I will miss; but that’s ok, for he has gone home to Santa Cruz to be with his mother.

Looking back, my Mother’s Day was often spent unusually at amusement parks.  Although I hardly participated in the wild rides of such adventuresome places like Magic Mountain, I cherished those days spent just watching my children enjoy themselves. Mother’s Day to me was “playtime” — a day to laugh with the kids and be filled with excitement, rather than a day to relax with breakfast in bed–although I’ve had a few of those as well.  Luckily for me, I’ve been blessed with several ways to have enjoyed the day.

This time, with some images collected from my recent trip to Panama City–

my head will certainly be in the clouds,


my body feeling buoyant, like from the pleasant view at The Flamenco Yacht Club


and my spirit in colorful and graceful movement like the way their cultural dancers performed that night.


Add to it all, a similar drink I had filled with fruits in the bubbly like this Sangria, surrounded by love and joy in sons–Richard, Ryan and Ross, my Aunt Isabella Rose who is visiting with us for a month, my husband, Richard…and our friends.  Be rest assured, I will be with cheer on this special day, very happily being a mother.

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!


May you find the heart of golden treasures in those you love most.

Halo-Halo, viagra sales find that’s what you’re looking at– a Filipino dessert with a name that means mix-mix that my Aunt Rose and I shared at midnight, medical before she headed back to Cleveland, generic yesterday. Calorie wise, taste wise, event wise, it was THE BOMB!  Tita (Aunt) Rose and I couldn’t stop emoting as we dug deep into the enormous parfait glass.  I was made ecstatic by more memories in the making, as the ice cream melted and mixed with the ice, milk and all else.

In all honesty, I believe some Filipino foods can be really odd, and maybe even unappetizing in its looks. But this beautiful and delightful concoction is refreshingly delicious! Unusual with layers of sweet red mung beans, white beans, sugar palm fruit, Langka (Jackfruit), Nata de Coco (cream of coconut jelly made of fermented coconut juice) and Leche flan (creme caramel *I make mine the French way) topped with shaved ice, a little milk and then crowned with Ube (purple yam) ice cream, you may well consider it an antidote to brain freeze. Sometimes mixed with Macapuno, described as gelatinous mutant coconut strings, there is a possibility, you will forever be altered, especially if you tried THIS one I made.


Successfully better than what I’ve ever had in the past while growing up in the Philippines, I account my efforts to having made my own purple yam ice cream. Generous with the ingredient of Halayang Ube (purple yam jam) that I mixed with cream, milk and sugar before pouring into an ice cream maker, I fell in love with its delicate lavender color and taste, which I preferred over the strongly food colored, store bought equivalent. Purple yams into ice cream–yes I know, it makes you wonder! It’s…different. But then so is Johnny Depp. Only this ice cream is more rich and velvety than his often scraggly appearance. In retrospect, that makes him a disappointment. Haha! I’ll take the ube ice cream–thank you! ;)

Isabella Rose_main

Isabella Rose at Amaya, The Grand del Mar on Mother's Day 2012

This is my beautiful Aunt who visited with me for nearly six weeks. Only 8 years older than me, she’s my same Aunt who rehearsed me over and over, preparing me diligently for the talent portion at the Miss World pageant held in London in 1978. Her efforts paid off when I took home the award and nostalgia was a sweet companion with this reminder during her visit. The full exchange we had each day was as mixed as Halo Halo. We talked about life, men, women, children– people in general, including ourselves, our thoughts and what mattered to us both. We rummaged through my China cabinets, building sets up to twenty four as we sat through eBay, looking for special period finds on stuff I’ve had for years. Influenced by my strong fixation to well dressed tables, Tita Rose ended up with her own china set to pack. Then my sister Ronnie, who lives in Arizona, got clued in on what we were doing.  So then, she also wanted a set!

There were many other things we favored during her visit: Dior’s J’Adore perfume, Hello Kitty, blingy accessories where I have it in pink and she gets it in blue…flavored canned tuna, white truffle pizza, mango salads, and anything exotic or “different”. And yes, for Mother’s Day, we gave her that special something with the selling slogan “Think Different”.

Altogether, our shared experience can be remembered as a parfait mix of specialness. Not unlike this one-of-a-kind creation, theoretically, I too, found the antidote to brain freeze: mix it all up (all you’re made of) and think …differently.  After my Aunt left, I was with a whole new comfort to proceed with new goals–happy to look back and forth, accepting even the strange and fermented parts of life and crowning it with velvety rich memories.

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Busy Buggers

 

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Easter’s Macro

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© Louvette Fowler 2011

It’s Easter Monday and I’m feeling quite lazy after yesterday’s relaxing and wonderful day with the family.  We spent the day like usual, discount cialis pilule just lounging around after a fattening but worthwhile brunch of Eggs Benedict, ampoule which I don’t make often for obvious reasons.  I am however, prescription tempted to re-enact the presentation, take photos of it and add to this post, later with a recipe.

But perhaps for now, this will suffice, and I truly hope you all had a happy Easter!   The flowers I had at the table served its purpose and then some for this macro set.  I love vibrant colors, as I also am a “Spring” in the color wheel based on my skin tone and eyes.  But I am just as in love with converting photos to black and white and sepia tones for the romance and nostalgia.  It allows me to project a moment and a subject, captured as “timeless”.

And don’t we all want to look timeless!  I’m still celebrating my birthday, though it’s been a few weeks since early on this month, when I had my closest friends and family join me at the chef’s table of The Addison at The Grand Del Mar.  I’m done counting the days!  Born on an Easter Sunday myself, my mother often joked that I actually came out of an egg.  So there are no chick years as far as I know!   I’m then ageless and Easter is pretty special to me.  Besides that, it is the Lord’s Day.  There is rebirth and victory in the knowledge, that should one just believe, everyone is OK as they are–even if one came out of an egg!  That is simply the GOOD NEWS about Jesus, as far as I know.  But one shall find the resurrection of their true self, only in and by the good that He stands for.

Beyond spirituality and onto keeping it light and contemporary–gone are the days of Easter egg hunts, chocolate bunnies and Cadbury eggs with cream fillings for me; but I still like to have the occasional long stemmed strawberries dipped in chocolate.   Though they end up lasting for a while in my house full of fitness gurus (except me),  I’ve already had my fair share.  So some things never change.  Easter can be spiritually enriching, but physically widening!  So much for keeping it LIGHT and contemporary!

Today is another warm and sunny day in San Diego, and I should really be hitting the beach after all the sticks of butter in the hollandaise.  But onto other work in the meantime, as one can bet that tomorrow will yield the same amount of rays anyway.  The bunnies will be hopping around my garden as usual, and there will be flowers, the blue skies, the warmth in the wind and the busy kitchen stocked with enough eggs for continued cooking and  baking…and if anything else, I guess to simply remind me of where I came from. :P

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Macro Painting With A Lense

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Almost too personal…but they don’t mind. :)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Today, buy viagra site I felt like using a palette of softer colors, see while I forayed into doing more macro shots.  I didn’t use any color filters whatsoever, by camera or by Photoshop.  I wanted to test a close up +2 filter on my 105mm lens with Defocus Control, as well as on my 105mm macro lens.   At one point I also attached a Digital Optics 2x magnifier behind the 105 with DC.

On using the macro lens with attachments, it was quite difficult to focus and I kept stopping the lens down to at least 5.6 and waiting for more light.  Effectively, I also had to think in terms of painting by photography.  I liked the effects, and most of the shots have only been very slightly saturated or with added black for more definition.   Adding contrast took something away from the light and dreamy colors, so if I used it, it was applied very sparingly.  The colors are very much as they are from the camera, and this can be attributed to the awesome lenses I use on my Nikon D700.

I used a slight bit of sharpening on only one image, but I believe it had a high ISO on it as it was, so they’re pretty much as they were shot.   Whether you understand this photography talk or not, I hope you like them.  I happen to like everything from the soft to bold, clear or impressionistic.  Macro doesn’t have to be detailed all the time, as there are no rules, Calvinball!  And since there was no one around today, who can teach me stylistically how to obtain effects, I’m having fun experimenting.  And flowers–well, they are a joy to work with at anytime.  They stay very still unless swayed by the wind, at which point they can become quite challenging for their close up!!!   But no problem, I only had to shoo a few bees away, annoyed as they were when I got too close to their beloved fleur du jour.

Expect a whole lot more macros and photographs of flowers from me. I just hope to find more time.

See you at the Botanical Garden or perhaps the Carlsbad flower fields?  Ah, the Butchart Gardens near Victoria, BC is more like it!  I can’t wait to visit that piece of heaven on earth–a second time around.

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