Tomatoes around the world

The ingredient of August will be tomatoes!!! I apologize for the late post. My writing has been slow lately. My husband is out of town for two weeks. When he left for training, my daughter was sick for a good part of the week and now I’m fighting the sniffles. I am so thankful I have my parents living near by where they could watch her while I went to work though the commute was twice as long. I’m surprised I was able to even squeeze in some writing this past week.

Anyway, I chose tomatoes for August because I want some excuse to make some good gazpacho. The gazpacho I’ve attempted to make in the past has tasted somewhat off…maybe there was too much bread or maybe it was too acidic. Maybe I have not found the right gazpacho recipe. I’m still willing to look around because people rave so much about gazpacho. Plus it’s appropriate for the summer time because it’s too darn hot for ramen, pho, and chicken noodle soup.

Continue reading Tomatoes around the world

Making and eating ice cream (Eat around the World challenge)

I thought this would be a fun recap of all the ice cream I tried this past month for July. Since August is a hotter month, you’ll still find me eating some more ice cream…maybe I’ll find some time to make more ice cream and popsicles. Don’t forget — I’m also going to be experimenting with tomatoes and looking for dishes that incorporate tomatoes. That will be fun!

I’m pretty much writing this post almost half asleep. This week has been chaotic and incredibly energy-sucking. I’m surprised I am even able to squeeze some time to blog. I’ll share more for this upcoming weekend coffee share.

Continue reading Making and eating ice cream (Eat around the World challenge)

My first month of intermittent fasting

Intermittent fasting (IF) is an eating pattern where you cycle between periods of eating and fasting. I would not call it a diet because it does not say what you should and should not eat, it is more like when you should eat. No food is allowed during the fasting period, but you can drink water, coffee (without cream and sugar), and tea (without tea and sugar), and other non-caloric beverages. There are different types of fasts, one being 16 hours of fasting followed by 8 hours of eating (16:8), 18 hours of fasting followed by 6 hours of eating, and 20 hours of fasting followed 4 hours of eating. Then I have seen fasts run for as long as 36 hours — something I have not tried at all.

I’ve done IF since Thanksgiving, but it was something I did occasionally especially on the weeks where I knew I’d be eating a lot of food later in the day due to a bunch of holiday festivities. Since January 1st I decided to take a more serious look into IF to see if it was something I could do everyday. So here is my take:

16:8 fast – This is how I fast almost everyday. I don’t eat after 8:30 PM and my next meal is 12:30 PM for lunch. It is very doable.

18:6 fast – This one is a little bit of a stretch because it ends at weird time for me. About a couple of hours later, I leave work. I guess I could snack at my desk with my fasting period is over. I am not sure if this is something I could do everyday.

20:4 fast – Though this fasting window is even longer, I would more likely do a 20:4 fast than an 18:6 because by that time, I leave my office and have dinner. Doing one day of a 20:4 fast is doable, but two days in a row is much tougher. Maybe this would happen about no more than two times per week, but not consecutively.

Any changes since I started IF?

I feel more focused.

There seems to be less brain fog. Maybe instead of having food on the mind, worrying about preparing my next meal, I focus on what task I need to do.

Mornings feel less rushed

I don’t have to make breakfast, so it is one less thing to worry about in the morning. I can just make coffee, feed the dogs, and get ready to go to the gym.

Save money

I would like to think IF can help save me money. Before on most days I would buy a pastry and a coffee in the morning followed by buying lunch at the work cafeteria. Since IF, I know I can wait until I finish my fast. I would like to think it had helped me with curbing my impulse buys.

I had a surprisingly easy transition.

I guess I had a fairly easier time starting it because I don’t drink soda and I don’t add creamer and sugar to my coffee. 

Instead of lunch… I am more productive!

Instead of lunch, I plan, write, read, and learn.

Have you done intermittent fasting, and did it work (or not work) for you? Comment below!

Back to budgeting

At 22, I was a young professional working in an entry-level job at a biotech company in San Diego. The pay was not that great. My expenses were rent, student loan debt, other debt, paying for groceries, and utilities. I did not have a car at the time. I lived in San Diego, a very car-dependent city. For convenience sake, I lived walking distance from work but the rent in my neighborhood was fairly high.

I had a blog and in it, I had a blog series around my $20/week grocery budget. When I first brought it up to people, some were intrigued. Others said it was impossible or that I don’t eat much anyways. Then some told me about 99 cent TV microwaveable TV dinners. Ugh.  All thanks to a supportive blogging community, spending $20/week on groceries is possible. It did not involve TV dinners at all, instead, it involved creativity. I knew a bag of spinach could feed me through breakfast (green smoothies) to dinner (salad). A tub of Greek yogurt could be a filling breakfast or a healthy dessert. 

With that being said, we are launching our $40/week grocery budget. Why $40 this time? I’m married now which means $20 for me and $20 for my husband. Plus we’ve got a lot of financial things we need to take care of such as remodeling the house and paying our student loans (my husband’s bachelor’s, my Master’s degree). Let’s give it a go… I’ll try my best to journal this personal finance journey if time permits…

Sushi Burritos

There was this one place I’ve been meaning to go to because they served Sushi Burritos and they were opening up in Valencia. Of all places, my childhood home? Everytime we’ve gone to see my parents, my husband and I always said to stop by Temakitto but it always slipped our mind.

Yesterday we finally went and we thought, “why have we gone come by sooner?”

We were thinking these sushi burritos would be like the ones from a certain place we’ve gone to in the past where they pack A LOT of rice and it was underwhelming.  Gladly Temakitto packs more content — more fish, more veggies — into their sushi burrito.

From left to right: Crunchy Tiger burrito, Red Eye burrito

28126 Newhall Ranch Rd.
Santa Clarita, CA 91355