As a parent we want the best for our children. We know we do for Frankie. That is why it is essential that we lead by example. There are things that they might not like, not understand and things they do enjoy, but we must enforce it no matter what. We know at times it is tough even for us adults!
There might be some of you out the reading this who are not Catholic like us, or from a different denomination, religion or even orientation, but we can all relate that if it is kindness you show, your child will mimic that. If it is love, then love they’ll be portraying. If it’s telling, fighting and other horrible habits you show them then they will think it is normal.
We teach Frankie what we think is right as HIS parents. In our household we don’t eat until we pray…
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By Apolinario Villalobos
With the soaring prices of various food items that include vegetables, fish, meat and spices, one must be resourceful to be able to scrimp on these. Along with the effort, one must also use ingenuity in coming up with recipes that make use of cheap ingredients and quick cooking to save on fuel, such as gas, electricity, wood or charcoal. The following are some suggested and simple recipes with cheap ingredients:
- “Okoy” or fritter using strips of singkamas (jicama, turnip), squash and monggo sprouts (toge), flavored with dried krill or kalkag. This can be eaten as snacks or as viand (ulam).
- Vegetable combo using all kinds of indigenous vegetables – camote tops, alogbate, eggplant, saluyot, okra, tomatoes, onions and ginger, especially, those wilting in the ref.
- Pickled radish, eggplant, string beans, mustard or cabbage using cheap old stock of the said vegetables, the prices of which could be 50% less than the fresh ones. The mentioned vegetables can be pickled separately using vinegar and salt. As a salad, they can be prepared with slices of fresh tomatoes and onions.
- Mashed eggplant using the old, hence, cheap ones. Boil the eggplants into soft consistency, mash and sauté in oil, chopped tomatoes and onions. This can be used as a bread filling or as appetizing main dish.
Other cheap ideas are:
- Steaming vegetables by placing them on top of about-to-be cooked steamed rice. Remove them when ready to be served. Dips or sauce can be soy sauce mix with vinegar, chopped onions and tomatoes. This is the cheapest way to cook steamed vegetables and is more nutritious than boiling.
- Flavoring vegetables or fried rice with the sauce of canned sardines while saving the whole fish for pasta dishes or as a separate dish sautéed in plenty of tomatoes and onions.
- Preparing skinless tomatoes by freezing ripe ones after which bringing them out, and as they start to thaw or soften, starting to peel them. Skinless tomatoes can be frozen again to be used when preparing salad or sauce for pasta dishes, or can be mashed and cooked in oil, little vinegar and salt, to make tomato paste. The traditional way of peeling tomatoes is by soaking them in boiling water for a few seconds, but could be messy.
- Preparing ready-to-use tomato and onion sauce using cheap old stock of the said vegetables. Cook the chopped vegetables in oil after which, apportion in small container for freezing and bringing out only the needed portion….this is a time and fuel saver.
- Not continuously boiling monggo beans. Upon boiling, remove from stove and allow a few minutes “rest” to give the beans time to absorb the water, then return to the stove for another round of boiling; remove again…and on the third time, cook over slow fire until the beans become mashed in boiling water. This technique is best if only a single-burner stove is being used, as other dishes can be cooked while the monggo pot is “resting”.
The problem with most Filipinos today is that they refuse to think of ways to live on a tight budget, yet, they have the gall to waste food such as a spoonful or two of rice left on the plate or throw the left-over instead of recycling them. Also, they have the courage to blame the government for their travails due to low wage and soaring prices of commodities but they do not exert effort to save! They forgot the adage, “kung maikli ang kumot dapat ay mamaluktot” (one should exert effort to be covered with a small-sized blanket by lying curled on his side.)
The Crooks in Our Midst
By Apolinario Villalobos
The crooks in today’s world are known by several names – skimmers, hackers, scammers, pickpockets, pimps, fakers, drug lords, drug pushers, etc.
There are jet-setting crooks who bring their dubious trade in other countries. In the Philippines there are foreigners who are ATM machine skimmers, and who successfully entered the country as tourists. Some of these are bomb-making experts who ply their trade in many countries for varying handsome fees….with some already in the Philippines sharing their knowledge with local terrorists in the name of religious advocacy. Filipino pickpockets travel to Hongkong and the casinos in the US to ply their trade.
In Manila, particularly, along the stretch of Recto Avenue, fakers of documents, openly solicit clients. Not far away is the Avenida where pimps approach moneyed-looking guys who are shown photos of supposedly “virgin” and pretty and still, supposedly “young students” who need money for their tuition fee. And, of course, among these crooks are the pickpockets, with some of them decent-looking.
Air-con buses that ply the provincial routes from Manila are not spared by fake evangelists who deliver lines from the Bible and then approach passengers to ask for “donation”. And, another group of bus-hoppers is composed of distraught-looking guys and women who show Xeroxed copy of death certificate of supposedly relatives whose remains could not be interred due to lack of funds. I encountered several crook women who showed photos of supposedly members of their family and who are in the hospital and who badly needs financial assistance.
Fly-by-night tour operators have their own kind of modus operandi to successfully swindle sucker tourists, both local and foreign. They advertise too-good-to-be-true cheap tour packages to popular tourist spots complete with several days stay in first class resorts or hotels….payment is online, as the transaction has been made in the same way. Soonest as payment is made, the swindled client is left hanging in the air, as not even the promised transfer service did not materialize.
Other crooks in our midst are those who can’t seem to have a peaceful mind until they have borrowed money from “friends”, and without any intention to pay. I consider them “leeches” as they suck blood from their trusting friends. Unfortunately, many of this kind are supposedly educated, professionals who know that what they are doing is wrong, yet, they persist on exploiting others.
There are many more crooks, as those I mentioned are just some of them. Every one could have been a victim in one way or another, and through small or big deal….as the world is full of them!