Friday, January 8, 2016


Homework:  2016 resolutions

     I'm back from an extended hiatus break.  The missing months that I have not been producing new postings, I was enjoying life and taking a much needed vacation during the summer to my mother's homeland, Thailand.  I was visiting almost the entire country and cross the border to one of the country's neighbor, Laos.  Thailand was a trip of a lifetime that required extensive amount of research and travel booking.

Big Buddha Phuket
Phuket, Thailand
August 5, 2015

     Besides the mini vacation, I was just doing the daily grind of "survival" working.  Now, I'm ready looking forward to upcoming new things and get back in the habit of updating my blog.  

     I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and hope the start of the New Year 2016 brings you all peace, happiness, prosperity, and blessings.

     January 1st of the new year starts off most people's resolutions.  Do you have any to share? 

Here are a few things to chew on in helping you jump start ideas for 2016:

Discover a new passion
Everyone has an inner desire they love to do or wanting to seek a new goal in life.  Learn something new that would be fulfilling and expand the mind.  

Focus on what's important
Eliminate the things you don't need before another year piles on.

Travel more
Traveling to different places within one's own country or abroad would help boost your mood, and help you relax.

Quit smoking
Getting rid of cigarettes can help cut your health risk down from being sick.  The most effective way is going cold turkey. 

Listen to your favorite music
Music can be uplifting and put you in a better mood.

Be healthier
Eat more vegetables, fruits, herbs, and spices.  Drink more water.  Exercise, walk, or utilizing the stairs more.  Socialize.

Quit drinking or at least cut back tremendously
Obsessively drinking alcohol puts your kidneys and liver at a dangerous risk in malfunctioning.

Treat yourself
Rewarding oneself would boost your confident levels and encourage you to do even better.  Another way to up lift the mind, body, and soul.

Turn back the years
Stress and the daily bad eating habits plays a significant role on making us look older than what age we actually are.  Decide what makes you stress and eliminate it.  Choose the right beauty products and foods.  Read labels.  Get the necessary sleep the body needs.

Cutting the sugar
Be creative in making your own sweets and juices.  Sugary foods hinders the body to help function at its best.

     My goals for 2016 are:

  1. Purge and organize my home
  2. Learn a new skill or craft (video/digital editing)
  3. Utilize my cookbooks and food magazines (creating new dishes) 
  4. Continue to travel
  5. Volunteer
  6. Extend family
  7. Exercise - yoga 
  8. Cutting the sugar
  9. Gaining more weight (yes, I said it)

Hopefully, these ideas will have you decide your 2016 goal.

                                                Happy New Year 2016!


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


"It's Juicing Tuesday"

Strawberry Turmeric Tonic 

It's Juicing/Blending Tuesday!  Oh, yeah right.  It sure has been a while that we had one of these post segments.  Let's get back in the habit.

So, what's in season? Strawberries! 

Organic Strawberries
(the darker the berries the sweeter it is)

If you have noticed in your local stores or your garden, those berries are just popping up in bundles.  The supermarkets are having deals now.  I went to whole foods last week and saw organic strawberries were $3.49!  

"Now in Season"
Grab, grab, grab

How about that!  Normally, they were $5.99.  You got to grab those produce that are in season especially organic.  Keep in mind strawberries are considered one of the dirty dozen produce items.  Why?  Strawberries are usually sprayed heavily with pesticides since they grow low to the ground.  It is very important to go for organic berries.

How about starting to grow your very own strawberry plant?

Strawberry plant kit
(cost $1 at Target Stores)

Unfortunately, I'm still waiting for it to sprout.  I transferred the soil and seeds to one of the garden raised beds.  Maybe that will help.  We shall see.

Now back to our original topic- Strawberry Turmeric Tonic

This tonic water is one of the ways you can incorporate the benefits of strawberries, limes, and turmeric in your diet.  All three have significant benefits to help heal the body from inflammation and to fight diseases.

Strawberries Nutritional Facts:

  • High levels of antioxidants - polyphenols
  • Fiber
  • Heart friendly- increases the HDL (good) cholesterol and lowers blood pressure
  • Low calories
  • Manganese
  • Potassium
  • Vitamin C - about 8 strawberries
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Boost short term memory
  • Helps burn stored fat
  • Anti-aging properties
  • Promote eye health

raw honey, lime, and organic strawberries

  • 7 cups of purified water 
  • 1 tablespoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 lime
  • 3 organic strawberries
  • 1 tablespoon of raw honey
**Feel free to add more strawberries, lime juice, and more raw honey if you like.

Essential Tools:  Blender, tea pot or pot, pitcher, and mesh strainer


  1. Boil 1 tablespoon of turmeric powder in purified or distilled water.  For about 15 - 20 minutes.
  2. Let the tea cool down and strain it.  
  3. Thoroughly wash off your lime and strawberries.
  4. Slice off the top part leaves of the strawberries.
  5. Squeeze the juice out of the lime.
  6. Add the strawberries, lime juice, and raw honey into a blender. 
Ready to blend away!

Once the turmeric tea is cooled, strained, and in a pitcher then add the strawberry puree mixture.

Pour the strawberry mixture into the turmeric tea

Tip:  The strawberry puree mixture can also be use to make a nice strawberry limeade by just using water.

Wholesome good.  Super beneficial!

Strawberries meets Turmeric

Stir away and chill.

Stir or shake away!

                                                                                      Live the Good Life!

Monday, June 8, 2015


"Rainbow Swiss Chard"

Rainbow Swiss Chard
Vacant spot is now filled
Garden Bed #3

The time has come for the swiss chard to be transplanted to the garden.  Besides, I was so ready to kick them out the outside (windowsill) - tiny bugs was on them.  The problems we face when having live plants.  Plants are beneficial to the environment and helps clear toxins from the air.

Planted Rainbow Swiss Chard
April 11, 2015

As of June 6, 2015 they looked good to be transplanted.

Rainbow Swiss Chard Seedlings
June 6, 2015

Then I decided to throw garlic cloves in the garden beds.  Hopefully, they will sprout and grow.

Garlic Cloves

Now, Arugula has taken occupant in Swiss Chard place in the pot.  More organic greens!  

Planted seeds 6-6-15
Arugula is a healthy investment.  We all know it can be a bit pricey in the stores.  So, why not grow it your own?  It's so simple! 

Pot + Soil + Seeds + Water + Sun = Great Healthy Investment 

Monday, June 1, 2015


"It's Harvest Time"

Japanese Mustard Greens
"Ready for Harvest"
May 30, 2015

The time has come to pick those greens.  They were screaming out "pick me, PICK ME!" 

I've reaped in the benefits with a nicely full basket of fresh organic mustard greens.  I've saved myself at least $8 worth.  Organic fresh dark leafy greens produce goes for $3.99 or more depending on the place of supermarket you go to.  Most will charge per pound.

Basket of Mustard Greens

Love the food you grow...

Thanks to Mother Nature 

And know where your food comes from!

As a reminder every Monday is Harvest Time at Daphne's Dandelion

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


"Gardening 102"

Garden Raised Bed #3  "Spring 2015"
May 25, 2015

The temperatures has been rising in high 80s this past weekend.  It was a nice three day weekend due to Memorial Day holiday.  We love three day weekends.  I took advantage to work on the backyard again and just about done with the planting.  I just have to transfer the swiss chard and broccoli seedlings once they are capable to stand the outside world.

I wanted another raised bed.  I know... I know... I have too many plants.  But these plants are super beneficial and cost effective too!  Planting/Gardening is a hobby for me to relieve my stress, get some needed exercise, and it's a mediation as well.  "When the body is at ease, the mind is at ease."

Last month I ordered a 42 in. by 42 in. garden raised bed kit from Home Depot at a clearance sale price of $29.98.  Who would pass a price on that?!  Yesterday I finally was able to assemble this raised bed kit.  It took me five minutes to assembly but practically the whole day yesterday to organize and fill the bed.  The weather was super hot (hot as hell) but I wanted to get all the plants out in the ground and outside as early as possible since we are limited to the warm weather. 

simple and ease to assembly
(no instructions were in the box)

a perfect fit

laid out my weed blocker cover

added the raised bed frame on top

added organic soil, peat moss, garden lime, and garden tone

started my dimensional measurements
(this raised bed I wanted organization)

box formation
(better and clearer)

plant away
1st row across:  Rosemary, Marigold, Thai Basil & Cayenne Pepper, Hydrangea
2nd row across:  Marigold & Lacinato Kale, Purple Basil, Vacant (not filled), Sage
3rd row across:  Marigold & Radicchio, Lemon Thyme, Thai Basil & Marigold, Lacinato Kale
4th row across:  Marigold & Yellow Sweet Pepper, Radicchio, Little Finger Eggplant, Stevia & Marigold

Garden Tip:  Plant perennials.  "The Gift that Keeps Giving.  Year after Year."

I had planted these in pot containers...

Blackberry Plant
May 25, 2015

You cannot have a summer with cucumbers and berries!

Cucumber Plant
May 25, 2015

Also, I planted geraniums and snow pea seeds in containers.  (see top picture next to 3rd raised bed)

Updates:  As of May 24 & 25, 2015

Golden Cayenne Peppers Blooming
May 24, 2015

Meyer Lemons Growing
May 24, 2015
Japanese Mustard Greens
May 24, 2015

Two of my tomato plants are struggling.  Under distress.

had to put a stake to hold up the poor thing
San Marzano Tomato Plant
May 24, 2015

another tomato plant not happy
May 24, 2015

As you can see you do not need a green thumb to be a gardener.  Many plants will not make it and some will.  I believe it's trial and error.  You won't know unless you try it.

                                                                                  Enjoy gardening!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

THE 2015 GROWING SEASON IS IN FULL SWING...Reaping the benefits?

"Yes, Indeed"

2015 Garden Raised Bed
(work in progress)
Lacinato Kale, Radicchio, Marigolds, Lemongrass, Stevia, Lavender, Cucumbers, & Sweet Red Pepper
May 17, 2015

This past Sunday I started full swing in working on the backyard to prepare for more planting.  Gardening is work but it has beneficial results for the environment and yourself. Gardening is exercise and a stress reliever.

Bought new soil...

New starter tomato plants...

San Marzano, Black Krim Heirloom, & Golden Jubilee

Found a good location to transplant the tomato plants...

clear any debris, cut any roots, apply good soil, and peat moss
*added bonus - eggshells I crumbled and added in the soil

*Garden Tip:  Eggshells are beneficial to plant life.  When using eggshells make sure you thoroughly rinse off the shells with water and mild liquid soap to avoid salmonella.  After rinsing let the eggshells dry out.  Then completely crush them up and sprinkle away.  Fends off pests and supply calcium nutrients to the plants.

Welcome to tomato and blueberry land
Tomato Plant

While finding a home for the tomato plants I came across a JAPANESE MUSTARD GREEN SPROUT!  Wow, these greens are just popping up all over the place.

Spreading the mustard green love all over

Unfortunately, I had to remove the sprouts to put them all in one location.  I've noticed their little roots - still young...

Hopefully the greens will survive their transplant new location

Besides the mustard greens sprouts popping up in the ground - my collard greens are back!  One collard green survived and thriving!  Planted one marigold, the mustard green sprouts, and a tomato plant in this area to keep the collard green company.

another area for plant life

Working on another area to add more plant life.  Goal is to plant perennials in this area.  Cost effective and less work for future.

new plant life will be in this area

*Update - As of May 17, 2015 the mustard greens (inside the elevated raised bed) still looks healthy and thriving and ready for harvest soon.  

Japanese Mustard Greens

Remember my Meyer lemon plant.  Well, she is still holding on strong and produced lots of flowers.  As usual some flowers dropped off and some stayed on (the stronger ones) and produced these future lemons!

Meyer Lemons are GROWING!

P.S. the hot mess on the ground that's yellow and white are cornmeal and baking soda.  I had to control the ant population.  It hasn't been a week since I had placed some of my pot plants outside and already they've been attacked by the ants!  I'm hoping those little buggers will take the cornmeal mixture back to their hide away home and be gone.  Eventually, the rain will wash away the mixture off the ground.  I do not like spraying pesticides or bug spray around edible plant life or in home because of the toxins it can do to the body.

On that note... I highly recommend everyone grow something or place a plant on their windowsill, patio, terrace, and backyard.  Reap those benefits.  Know where your food comes from.  


                                                                                                     Enjoy the Spring Season!

Monday, May 18, 2015


"Prepping Those Garden Beds"

Garden Elevated Raised Bed
May 10, 2015

The time has finally come - "The Gardening Season is in FULL SWING." 

Home Depot Starters
(vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers)
Home Depot Starters

 I haven't been out in the backyard for months and not even when we had snow.  As the temperatures started to heat up in New York, I started to take a peep out last Sunday to see what needs to be done and see what has sprung up.  What a surprise to see this in the elevated raised bed.  Wow!  MUSTARD GREENS!  Remember back last spring/summer 2014 I've planted the seeds and transplanted the sprouts into the bed?  Memory a bit fuzz?  Well, maybe you can remember this picture I've took last year...

Last Summer 2015

You see the long stem with branches like sticking out.  Well, those were seed pods and it must have exploded into the soil and now came back in full force this year with strong growth of nice thriving leaves.  So, Japanese mustard greens are perennials.  How about that!

I throw out old debris and removed some of the top soil.  I mixed new soil and added peat moss, organic garden lime, and organic garden tone.

Prepped the soil for new seedlings
May 10, 2015
Those Japanese mustard greens sure is hogging up the bed.  I had to remove some to try and contain it to one area.  The dead looking branch patch next to it I think is my lemon balm plant.  Oh my!  I hope there is some kind of life hidden in it because I'm going to miss making my lemon balm punch.

I went to the Farmer's Market and Home Depot to pick up some starter plants because some of the seeds I've planted has not sprouted.  Time is essential when you live on the east coast with the hot weather being limited.

some starters herbs, tomatoes, and vegetables

I planted the following; golden yellow cherry tomatoes (love them from last season- so sweet and juicy), purple basil (love the smell and the flavor), parsley (still had in a mini pot from last year), radicchio, marigolds (a must keeps bugs and pests away- smells stink but the flowers are rich in color and bright), stevia, and seeds I've planted in egg cartons that hasn't sprouted, such as, strawberries, sweet red peppers, cilantro, padron peppers (got from a coworker who went to Spain), and tomatoes.

Elevated Garden Raised Bed 2015
May 10, 2015
Mustard Greens, Purple Basil, Stevia, Tomatoes, Parsley, Marigolds, Radicchio, Peppers

I love eating snow peas.  They are so sweet.  I bought a pack of organic snow peas seeds and planted them in this box.  

Planted Snow Peas
May 10, 2015

Reminder every Monday is Harvest Day on Daphne's Dandelions