Ugh, has it been that long since I blogged??? These days I swear go by way too fast especially since its towards the end of the school year. My boys are getting ready for summer as they face their last 2 weeks of school. Ah yeah!!! Summer!!
Anyways, you may have seen my updates on FB and Twitter about the arrival of my new and improved bloggity blog! YES!!! I love it and am extremely grateful for Becca Bonneville of Tickled Pink Studio who worked her magic. She took my previously boring blog and made it into something wonderful. I wanted it more streamlined and clean, with the flexibility for me to customize it. Also, since I wanted to incorporate a portfolio gallery, video tutorials, and later in the future, an online shop — WordPress, was the best solution for me. So I’m sorry Blogger, you were definitely great these past several years, but it was time for a change!
A lot of changes indeed have taken place these last several months, but there are still some things that have not changed thank goodness… Like my love for art, photography, and food I’m contemplating whether I should add a link at the top to my food adventures, cooking extravaganzas, and my overall quest to try new recipes on this blog. Hmmm…. Decisions, decisions.
Well, that is all for today and I shall return with hopefully, some fresh and inspiring creative art that I have been working on after such a long hiatus….
Be back soon…
A few months ago, I took the Creatively Made e-course by Jeanne Oliver and absolutely loved it because it has opened my eyes to a lot of things that I was finding so hard to understand about myself and what I desired as an artist. Most of my life, I have struggled with self-doubt and insecurities. I knew I wanted to be an artist, but have been so afraid of taking myself seriously for fear of rejection. Or I simply didn’t think or believe I could achieve anything great with it. My lack of confidence was limiting my growth and caused me to feel stuck. Deep down, I wanted so much to reach my dreams and just be who I knew I was meant to be. I’d ask God over and over, where am I going in life? What is my calling? I knew that first and foremost, I am a mom and a wife. Yes, I am fulfilled and complete because they mean everything to me and I value my role and purpose to love and care for them. But, I also knew that as a very creative person, that there was so much more I needed to do in life that served a bigger purpose using the gifts I have been blessed with. Finally, I can honestly say, I KNOW (not think) who I am and what I was born to do and now I’m more than ready to take it further and let my destiny unfold… This time no more holding back by fear! Yeahhhh!!!
So in regards to finally taking the step to realize my gifts and creative abilities, one of my dreams is to really build and grow my own brand and sell my art to retailers and wholesalers. I know that I can’t do it alone and need the help and mentoring of others. Unfortunately, I don’t have many people in real life that I can talk to or call upon for business advice or anything related to it. Thankfully, there’s some wonderful people out there who are willing to help and share their experiences with others. When I heard about, Building A Creatively Made Business, I knew I had to go for it. Jeanne Oliver has been so generous with her life to offer this course to those who are searching for the support and guidance in starting their own creative business. Her genuine and honest approach in what she shares and teaches are exactly what I believe has made this so invaluable and empowering. I look forward to discovering the things that has helped her build and grow her creative business. So thankful and excited to complete this workshop which started yesterday! And it’s not too late to join in if you’re interested!
Being a SAHM for so many years, I am extremely grateful for having found so many creative and inspiring connections through the virtual community, many who are willing to share their advice, insight, and experiences with people like me who need direction and guidance. Otherwise, I don’t think I would be where I am today. It feels good to be able to connect with other artists from all over the world who share in the same passion and creativity as I do. The beauty of it is supporting and learning from one another and watching each other grow. I truly hope that I can even meet some of them in real life one day So, if there’s any creative artists or crafters reading my blog that is in my area, please do not hesitate to contact me!
A few weeks ago, I happened to make this for dinner after hearing from my sister + cousin how easy and delicious it is. I already love sushi, so I knew that it would be such a great recipe to add to my collection if I ever craved for sushi at home. Many have asked me for the recipe, so I’m happy to finally post this and would love for you to leave a comment if you do make it and let me know how it turned out!
Now, it’s not your typical sushi where you roll it up and cut into pieces, but I’m sure you could if you felt like being creative and inspired to do so. As for me, this layered dish really gives the flexibility and allows for more creative possibilities beyond imitation crab or shrimp which this recipe calls for. You could definitely add your own twist to it, like shredded cooked tuna or salmon, avocado, etc. and mix and match to come up with your own. But for right now, I am posting the basic recipe which still rocks in my opinion. I actually had to make a separate batch that didn’t include shrimp because my poor hubby is allergic to shellfish, but I must say that I personally love it with shrimp because it does add so much more flavor to it.:)
Just a side note, I did google Sushi Bake recipes on the web and only found a few good ones like here and here. However, I did improvise on measurements and eye balled some of the ingredients to my judgement and took note of it. Also added Siracha Hot Chili Sauce per my cousin’s suggestion. Surprisingly, it didn’t make this too spicy unless you really want it to be, but remember, a little goes a long way. Either way, I’m not sure if you could go wrong with the amount of each ingredient you use, except when making sushi rice which does require exact measurements, otherwise it will end up too mushy or too acidic.
Speaking of making sushi rice, I thought it would be difficult, but actually it isn’t so hard. Just remember that it DOES make a difference with the type of rice you use. I was going to use long-grain jasmine since that was what I already had on hand, but found that it is best to not substitute the rice for anything else but Sushi grade rice–short, medium, or variety, which is what I used. You will be so glad you did because it makes up for a great foundation for the whole dish, giving it a really nice texture and flavor as it absorbs the flavors of the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt solution. YUM!
|Left to Right: Short/Med/Variety Calrose Rice, Rice Vinegar, Sour Cream,
Mayonnaise, Shrimp, Imitation Crab, Siracha Hot Chili Sauce,
Furikake Rice Seasoning, Roasted Seaweed
YUMMY SUSHI BAKE
3 cups sushi rice (See instructions below)
1 pkg imitation crab, chopped
1 pkg cooked frozen shrimp, chopped
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
3-4 dashes of Siracha (hot chili sauce)
2 jars Furikake Seasoning
2-3 pkgs Sushi Nori (roasted seaweed)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook sushi rice and set aside. In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients except Furikake Seasoning and seaweed, until thoroughly combined. You may add more mayo + sour cream if you like it a little more creamier and if you don’t mind the extra calories. Then in a 13×9 dish, spread the sushi rice evenly over the bottom of the baking dish. Layer the mixture over the rice evenly as well. Sprinkle the Furikake seasoning generously over the entire top layer. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until nice and hot. Cut up the roasted seaweed into squares. Serve by scooping the sushi bake onto the individual roasted seaweed and enjoy!
3 cups of cooked rice
1/3 cup of rice vinegar
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
Cook rice in rice cooker or pot according to the package directions. In the meantime, heat up rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan until it all dissolves, just a few minutes. Turn off heat. Now this next step is very important because it is really critical to making great sushi rice. You will need a wooden bowl and must not use a metal bowl or the vinegar will react with the metal. Scoop 3 cups of rice into the wooden bowl and drizzle the vinegar solution over the rice. Mix and fold rice to combine it all together and if you have an extra hand, have someone fan the rice while you’re mixing it to give it a nice shiny appearance. Continue to mix until all the vinegar has been absorbed.
There you go!! I am now getting hungry and drooling while typing this. Hopefully, yours will turn out just as yummy as it did for me and my family. This would also be a great potluck dish and will definitely please a crowd which obviously did for my household because it was gone within minutes!
I’m dropping in really quick to announce that I put up Sweet + Simple Album templates for $1 for our $1 Wednesday deal at Little Dreamer Designs, so if you had your eye on it for some time, now is the chance to grab it for a sweet discount of 88% off!
Back in November, I raved about this really awesome couple, who are friends of mine, and their photography business: Paco+Betty Photography. Today, I have the honor and privilege to share their latest photo session of this gorgeous couple, my sister Daisy and fiance (future brother-in-law, yay!) Adrian.
So, it’s been a few weeks since the day they took these photos and I’ve been anticipating for the moment to finally see them. I knew they were going to be stunning and all, but I didn’t expect it to deeply move me and get all teary eyed. Yes, maybe because this is in fact, my sister that I’m so freakin’ happy for her and love her to pieces, but also because I’m taken by the way these photos have a timeless appeal with a sense of nostalgia. It sorta feels like I’m looking at story from the past, but of a love story brought back to life. My sister and Adrian, definitely had a unique vision to recreate a harlem-inspired photo shoot, but it could not have existed without the gift and talents of Paco+Betty!
You can see more of their recent work on their blog.
Have a good day!!