Wednesday, July 28, 2010

How to Get Rid of Ants

Last summer ants started trooping in our house and took over our phone (landline) and Sweetie's keyboard. Immediately after shaking them out of both gadgets they started to take over my laptop. I started panicking then since I was afraid that my laptop might become unusable like our phone and Sweetie's keyboard.

Spraying Baygon proved to be just a temporary relief and hazardous to my health (even the water based one would trigger my asthma), so we scouted for better remedies online. We had to find one that would keep the ants out permanently and a solution that would not trigger my asthma.

We immediately stopped using Baygon and read from online sources that placing coffee in corners would keep ants out. Apparently ants hate the smell. It worked a bit, but they still found ways to get in the house, plus shoving it into holes was messy.

We tried to look for a glue insecticide but it wasn't available locally. Then we started looking for the "ant chalk". It was Sweetie's Mom who found some for us at a market in Marikina. She got us about 10 boxes. After getting it we then drew around holes and ant paths and walls.

Our anti-ant superhero.

The effect was amazing. Ants were immediately paralyzed when they went near the chalk line. Some dove to their death from the wall. It was a weird sight. Eventually the ants just avoided our place.

The ant chalk is quite easy to find in wet markets (at PhP10 per pack of 2), but it's also available in SM Hypermarket/Supermarket now (branded though).

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Beef Teriyaki

Beef teriyaki is another dish I've wanted to try out cooking. I found a couple of recipes that had wine in it. My boys aren't really fond of dishes with wine so I looked for an alternative recipe. Found one online and revised it to taste. Definitely easy to cook.


1/2 kg. beef
1 small can pineapple chunks
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. ginger

How to cook:

1. Mix all ingredients.
2. Marinate for 3 hours in refrigerator.
3. Stir fry the beef until it's brown.
4. Add marinade and let boil until beef is tender.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Slow Cooked Korean Beef Stew

I've been wanting to cook Korean beef stew but I had a hard time finding a bottle of mirin. I finally found a bottle at my (now) favorite SM Hypermarket branch - Buendia (will tell you why in another post). I find cooking beef dishes easier to prepare than pork ones (I'm allergic to chicken so I rarely make chicken dishes) and this dish was definitely easy to cook!

The ingredients:

1/2 kilo beef (should be rib type but I only had sirloin)
1/4 cup sugar (I used brown)
2 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. mirin
sesame oil
sesame seeds
2 beef cubes
2 slivers of ginger

How to cook:

1. In a pot boil the beef until tender. Add 2 beef cubes when it's boiling already.
2. Add soy sauce, sugar and ginger. Let it simmer.
3. When the water is almost half of what it was originally add the mirin and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
4. Add some sesame oil just before you turn off the stove. Transfer to a serving bowl.
5. Add a dash of sesame seeds.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Six Months After

It's really unbelievable how time flies in breakneck speed especially when you get so swamped with work. We've been unable to update this blog in the past couple of months. It's not really because of work, but chores! Yup, chores.

Anyway, we've been having a blast the past few months. We only realized that we've been married for six months already late in the evening of June 29th. When we remembered Sweetie and I just gave each other a hug and promptly fell asleep (haha!).

The past few months have been a flurry of activity. The boys helped me a lot in some of my major projects and we had our first family vacation in Bohol and another out of town trip with my high school buddies. Things have been working smoothly but I think our marriage won't be as happy without the mishaps that befall us every once in a while.

Here are ten things that we learned in the past three months:

1. Be OC about your travel plans. Our ferry to Bohol bogged down somewhere between Bohol and Cebu so we had to take another ferry. Instead of arriving in Tagbilaran by 2, we only managed to check-in the resort by six in the evening! It was a good thing though that we decided to get a packaged tour with accommodation. We would've been in big trouble if we just winged it because all the resorts were already fully booked!

2. Vulcaseal. Always have a can of Vulcaseal on hand. I was pee-ing when water from the ceiling started dripping on my head and the water was dripping from the ceiling light! Scary!

3. Sinampay and the Rain. If the sky is dark always assume that it will rain. We were less than a kilometer away from home when the skies opened and rained. It was a mistake that we definitely learned from. It took two days for the clothes to dry out completely.

4. Extra Curtains. So we're still trying to figure out what set of curtains we're going to use since we don't want to use the curtains with metal rings in it. I guess we'll have to buy.

5. Pests. Deal with them immediately. Ants started showing up when summer came around and they were looking for places to stay. We had to replace our phone handset and Sweetie's keyboard because they decided to make it their home.

6. Plants and Zombies. There is definitely a connection between plants and zombies. Don't be a zombie, always water your plant. R.I.P. Basil the basil plant from Tagaytay.

7. There's hope in cherry tomatoes. A week after Basil the basil plant died we decided to try out planting something so we got a packet of cherry tomato seeds at the supermarket. Tip: don't dump all the seeds in one pot! I had to ask my Mom to re-pot them.

8. Always update Mang Jose's number. For some strange reason my Mom's all around carpenter/electrician/gardener/painter/plumber keeps changing his number. We've been calling him monthly for emergencies. Good thing my Mom is always in touch with him.

9. Call your parents daily. We're just about 7 streets away from my parents, but I don't get to visit them as often as I want to so I try to call my Mom every day. A five minute chat daily goes a long way.

10. Spend time making uzi kitchen gadgets at the department store. You just might find something that would save at least 5 minutes of your time. Our newest gadget adds: vegetable mincer (no more tears from onions!) and a kettle (it's such a pain heating water using a pot, we should seriously have our heater installed!). But check your wedding gifts before buying anything. We stored some of our gifts since we didn't need them yet, but we checked them out again and found a couple of things to use.