Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Happiness is all around.

The world we live in has become too materialistic that people oftentimes find it hard to be contented and happy. We tend to focus more on the material things that we do not have and not on the things that we have. But if we spend but a moment each day to look around us and see what is there, what we have, we would realize that we have everything to make us happy.

As for me, here are the things that make me happy. Scan the list and you might see something which also makes you feel the same way. Feel free to add to the list under comments.

- a kiss or hug from my son
- rainbows
- a love letter from the man I love
- a walk in a park or garden
- colorful flowers
- trees after a rain
- sunsets
- sunrise
- ocean glittering under the sun
- my dog wagging its tail
- my son playing the violin
- my son’s laughter
- my dog licking me
- Zambales mangoes (yummy!)
- grass wet with morning dew
- a starlit sky
- broadway music
- a beautiful love story
- babies
- bunnies
- colorful lovebirds
- tulips
- scent of a sampaguita
- butterflies
- Taal lake
- clear blue sky
- lychees
- fruit salad
- wonderful memories
- romantic moments
- green mountains
- cold water
- yellow roses
- surprises
- poetry
- swings
- picnics
- Christmas
- making sandcastles
- birds chirping in the morning
- cherry blossoms
- ripples

These are only some of the things that make me happy every day. Most of them are free. God has given us everything we need to make us happy and we would only realize this if we open our eyes and see, really see.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sesame Seeds: small in size, big in calcium

If you’re worried about osteoporosis and yet you cannot bring yourself to drink milk, I may have the answer for you.

I came across a wonderful book years ago entitled Mirror, Mirror on the Wall. It was written by a famous American nutritionist, Gaylord Hauser and was filled with information about how one can be beautiful by eating the right foods. According to the author of the book, sesame seeds contain a good protein and B vitamins but most of all it is also a great source of calcium which is badly needed for good teeth and bones. One can get 1,125 milligrams of calcium from one hundred grams of sesame seeds, while you can only get 600 milligrams of calcium from milk. So for all of you out there who dislike milk as much as I do, you may want to try this recipe. I like it a whole lot better than milk.

Sweet Sesame Milk

1 cup washed sesame seeds
2 cups of water
2 tablespoons of honey
2 drops of vanilla extract

Put ingredients in liquefier-blender and mix until smooth. If it is too rich, just add more water. Keep it in the refrigerator and serve it chilled. It’s not only nutritious, it tastes good too, a little like almond milk.

Other rich sources of calcium are cottage cheese, yogurt, molasses, almonds, sesame seeds, turnip greens and broccoli.

Reference: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall by Gaylord Hausser

Heavenly Dessert

My favorite dessert is mango refrigerator cake. I used to make refrigerator cakes using fruit cocktail but four years ago I experimented with mangoes from our farm in Zambales. I've always used mangoes ever since. Zambales by the way has one of the best tasting mangoes in the world. This is why it would be great if you could get your hands on Zambales mangoes when you make this recipe. I promise you it is pure heaven. There is no other way to describe it. I always sing in anticipation when I make it. It's totally addictive so be careful. You might get fat.

Making it is simple. Just follow the recipe for refrigerator cakes. Just graham crackers and mangoes instead of other fruits when you make it. If you do not know the recipe here's how to make it.


2 cartons of all purpose cream (chilled)
1/2 can of condensed milk
graham crackers
ripe Zambales mangoes peeled and cut into slices (the more mangoes the better)

1. Mix the all purpose cream and the condensed milk in a bowl.
2. Grease the base of an aluminum pan (pan should be at two inches high) with the mixture then lay the crackers on the pan until the base is totally covered with crackers.
3. Pour a good amount of mixture on the crackers.
4. Lay the mango slices next.
5. Make another layer of crackers on top of the mangoes, repeating steps 3-4 two more times.
6. Refrigerate for two to three hours.

Serve in small slices but I bet you'll be going back for more. Enjoy!

Alum: My partner for life against seborrhaic dermatitis

Alum or tawas has been known to help whiten skin and reduce underarm perspiration. Few people know that it can also be used to clear the skin if you have what is called seborrhaic dermatitis. This is a recurring skin problem that produces itchy red spots on the oily and hairy areas of the skin like that under the eyebrows, the hairline, the side of the base of the nose. These spots become rough and scaly as days go by. They can be very unsightly if left untreated.

I have had this problem ever since I was in second year high school. I have been to different dermatologists and all of them said that there was no permanent solution to the problem and that I would just have to live with it, avoid stress and avoid the foods that I was allergic to. Of all the treatments I have gone thru and of all the remedies I have been asked to do, one thing stands out. This is the alum compress. Here’s what it does: it dries the spots faster, healing the skin in three days or less (it usually takes around five days for the skin to clear when using ointments). Since it is natural it is safe and has no side effects unlike if you have to use one particular ointment every day for the rest of your life. Aside from that, because the alum has a whitening effect, your skin would be lighter after regular use.

What you need:

alum crystals or alum powder (you can buy from Mercury Drugstore)
fresh clean water
face towel

1. Boil one and a half cup of water.
2. Pour the boiling water into a bowl.
3. Put 1 tablespoon of alum crystals in the water.
4. When the water gets warm dip the face towel into the water.
5. Lie down and cover the affected body part with the face towel for 15 minutes.

Do this twice a day every day until the itchy spots are gone. It works for me. I hope it works for you too.