Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Proof and Cooper

This year's criteria for a pumpkin patch was: "nice potty"! Last year we took the kids to Sweet Berry Farm in Marble Falls. We had been going there for about three years. They had a lot of fun until my then three year old needed to use the bathroom. Of course there was no bathroom so we had to use the porta potty. Of all the fun they had, this was the ONE thing she remembered! As soon as I mentioned we were going to the "pumpkin patch like last year", she started complaining that she "hated their potty!" I refused to deal with fussy toddler after driving such a long distance so we opted for somewhere nearer and had a good bathroom!

So here is Proof and Cooper. It is located only 30 minutes away AND it was actually a restaurant - therefore, "nice potty"! Located on Hamilton Pool Road, this little gem had a little pumpkin patch on its backyard. They had indoor and outdoor seating and served alcohol so off we went!

They serve lunch, dinner, brunch, beer and cocktails. I ordered the homemade fried chicken (old-school Texas recipe dredged and fried in-house. Crispy, spicy and slightly-sweet crunch). It came with biscuit that was drizzled with sweet honey, and I chose the house salad for my side dish. The chicken was delicious but my favorite was the biscuit! It was moist and the honey just made it even more scrumptious. The house salad however could have been better. It was just plain greens and some tomatoes and the basil vinaigrette that I selected was dry and tasted old.

My kids ordered just regular cheese burgers with fries. They didn't have a healthier side option like fruit or veggies. It was either fries or potato chips. 

My husband ordered Chicken Fried Steak with sautéed greens (kale) and mashed potatoes. It was great! Our order took quite some time, about 20 minutes. They were so hungry by the time our food arrived, I didn't get a chance to take photos of their meals! 

We then head out to the back for the pumpkin patch.

There was a magician up on stage when we got there, which the kids enjoyed. He was probably around 12 or 13 years old and I must say he was pretty entertaining. Hootie the Magician was his name. Then a band played right after. I'm not a country music fan, but they got some people up and dancing.

They had games for prizes to the side which cost $1 per ticket. Most games required at least two tickets.


There was a small area to pet some animals. The younger one did not want to try it.

Overall, the place was great! The pumpkin patch was a little smaller than I expected but we found our pumpkin to carve and some pumpkins for the husband's yearly pumpkin pie. The activities are geared toward smaller children though. This would be a nice go-to place for those who do not want to drive out too far to enjoy a pumpkin patch. Or for those who have kids who are very particular about having clean bathrooms! :)

By the way, the four year old did not even use the bathroom once the whole time we were there! Oh well! :)

Friday, October 13, 2017

Be More Pacific

New Filipino-American restaurant in town! The little girl and I tried it there today for lunch and so far oh so good!

Since having kids, it is always important for us to find places that are kid friendly! This restaurant had both - a kid menu and an open space for the kiddo to burn some energy. She had the Adobo Chicken (chicken braised in a tangy savory marinade of vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and pepper) served over steamed rice, garnished with green onions and also served with two slices of  fingerling potatoes. She said "Thank you for ordering this, it's good!". Kids are picky eaters in general, so if she likes it then it really is good!

I ordered the Tosilog (combination of sweet and savory pork, garlic rice, green onion garnish, and egg). This is one of my all time favorite dishes in the Philippines so I had to try this one first. All I can say is two thumbs up! The bowl was huge so plus points for that! I still have half of my meal to savor again tomorrow.

There are currently only two items on the dessert menu for lunch. So I went with Ube Ice Cream. Ube is otherwise known as purple yam and is a popular delicacy in the Philippines. It can be eaten on its own or made into different forms of dessert from cakes to candies, etc. So this ice cream was a must try. It is specially made by Amy's Ice Creams and it definitely did not disappoint! It is served with homemade purple yam. I had to race eat it with my little girl because she was way too fast! 

There is a famous spot in Austin called the "I love you so much" wall. You can read about it here. Having drawn inspiration from that wall, the wall below is the first thing you see as soon as you enter the restaurant. The saying on the background "mahal kita" is the filipino translation of "I Love You". Pretty awesome wall I must say! Perfect for pictures! Definitely going back to try more dishes from their lunch menu, take more pictures of the place because I missed some pretty cool spots, and to try their dinner menu!

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Not just for eating

We never really utilized the formal dining room unless we had guests over. We end up eating at the breakfast area most of the time. With two little kids, it has become a toy storage area too at one point. The kids are now bigger and we have a rule of "no toys downstairs" in place. It has given me much order and peace lol! 

So I decided to convert it into a space where we could use it more often. I've seen dining rooms with book shelves on Pinterest. So I thought I would try it. It is now a dining room / library / game room. We have enjoyed nights playing board games here with the kids. And on of my counter tops in my kitchen where my recipe books used to sit is now nice and blank. These IKEA book shelves used to be in my office. I have lots more space now there too.

This table from West Elm is perfect for this room. It seats eight people and is made from reclaimed pine. We fell in love with it the moment we saw it at the store. Plus it was on 20% off sale. We LOVE sales! However, the only thing we didn't like is the shipping cost - $229! There was no other option around it either. At least they assembled it and placed it where I wanted it.

We found the chandelier while walking around the huge Restoration Hardware store (or building rather!). Sputnik was its name. Again it was on sale for 55% off. Perfect! But like the dining table, the shipping cost was $200! It arrived assembled so the box was GIANT! It fit like a glove through our front door.  It didn't take much to install it (thanks to the hubby by the way). All the bulbs were included however one of them was defective and blew out as soon as we turned it on. The replacement bulbs sell for about $15 on their website. However, I found the exact same bulb on Amazon for only $8. It lights up the whole room perfectly. I must say though that all those bulbs can make the room a bit warm. Perfect during the colder months!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Banana Muffins

We love bananas in our house. The only drawback is that they ripen up too fast. So instead of trying to chomp down that very ripe banana so it doesn't go to waste, we make them into delicious muffins. Sharing this recipe from a friend of mine with a few tweaks. One time I was attempting to make these, I realized that I ran out of flour and decided to substitute it with buttermilk pancake mix. I figured it would still turn out good. And sure enough I think it turned out better than using just plain flour. I've tried other pancake mixes out there but the 365 brand from whole foods is our favorite.


4 ripe bananas
5 tbsps melted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1 pinch salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk pancake mix (we love the Whole Foods 365 brand)
Walnuts (optional)
Vanilla Ice Cream (optional)


1) Mix melted butter into mashed bananas
2) Add sugar, egg, and vanilla. Mix until well blended.
3) Sprinkle baking soda and salt
4) Add flour and mix until batter is smooth. You may mix in the walnuts at this point.

Heat oven to 350F. Using a small ice cream scooper, fill cupcake/muffin liner up to about 3/4. This will give space for the muffins when it rises. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Insert a toothpick in the middle of the muffin, if it comes out clean this means that the muffin is done. Serve as is or with vanilla ice cream. 


Thursday, January 8, 2015

Tub Time

Thursday, January 1, 2015


"Don't waste your time waiting for inspiration. Begin, and inspiration will find you."

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Little Details

She loves to draw and/or make something everyday. When her little sister is still asleep in the morning, she heads straight to her desk and does this. At the end of the day, this area is a complete mess. Crayons and markers everywhere. Small pieces of paper scattered on her desk and on the floor. I am currently teaching her how to fix these after she is done. Sometimes it is a struggle but there are times where she willingly does so. I continue to remind myself that she will never be this small again.

This little one loves to look at the pictures. Sometimes she pretends to read the words like her big sister does. She describes the pictures using baby talk, and everyday her vocabulary continues to increase. Her current favorite book is Go Dog, Go! By P.D. Eastman.

And then there are the days where these little toes are reaching for things that are not supposed to be reached. The little toes on the left was reaching for a glass half filled with water. When she got hold of it, she then put her little hand right inside and started laughing. The little toes on the right was reaching for tape (the kind used for gift wrapping). She wanted some because she was making a little "book". These two are definitely my daily entertainment.