Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Happy New Year! and my 200th Post - Strawberries in December

Happy New Year everyone!

This is such a happy coincidence!

My first post for the year and my 200th post! Wow! When I started this blog, I never thought I would reach this far. Thank you to all my friends, fellow food bloggers, and readers who make blogging very worthwhile! Thank you very much for your encouragements, inspirations and support. :) From the bottom of my heart.

Actually, I have come home for the New Year, but since my little family was not around during Christmas, we had to spend a lot of time with our extended families (aka grandparents) and friends. Plus, the catching-up work and things that I had to do... so I am able to return to the food blogging world only today. And I still have a lot of blog-reading to do! So, please forgive me if I have not visited your site yet. :)

Ooohh! I have lots of plans this year! More dishes and recipes to post! First up tomorrow is the Fruit Cake Bar that I made before we took our vacation. Watch out for that. :)

Then, I am also going to share some foodie experience we had on our vacation. I am not yet telling where we went. You have to stay tuned. :)

I am also looking forward to participating in the Cookbook that the BloggerAid community will be publishing. The proceeds from the sale of the cookbook will directly go to the World Food Programme of the United Nations! Now, isn't this a worthwhile cause to join in? Please do check out BloggerAid.

And now, for the strawberries... aren't these lovely?

Sorry, I did not remove the (2) dried leaves. I just wanted to show you how they looked when I received them. These lovely, fresh, and sweet strawberries were gifts from my friend and co-worker at Couples@Work Fellowship, J. Her family spent a few days in Baguio City (a city built on a plateau north of Manila, 7 hours away by car) and brought and shared these delicious treats with us.

Maybe you are wondering what's so special about these strawberries. You see, Philippines is a tropical country. We don't really have strawberries here, except in Baguio City (where everybody goes during summer). There at the mountain top, the weather is cooler, and more conducive to growing vegetables, flowers, and strawberries, of course!

Since we were kids, I remember we would only have fresh strawberries once a year, usually during summer (that's April or May), when somebody we know would go up to Baguio. But this time, we had strawberries in December! I didn't even know Baguio grows strawberries during December. (It is the coldest time of the year.) I thought strawberries are annual plants? But then, maybe modern plant productions have discovered how to grow them even when out of season.

Strawberries are good fruits. They are full of vitamin C and like all berries, contain flavonoids, which are important for their anti-oxidant properties.

Thanks J for our dose of fresh berries in December!

Submitting the first photo (topmost) to Click, a monthly food photography event by Jugalbandi. This month's theme is Red! Which for the Chinese, is a very appropriate auspicious color for the new year. This is the first time I am joining this photography event. I feel that I still have a lot to learn about food photography. The photo entry above was taken by my 12-year old daughter. I simply want to encourage her photography skills by entering her photo in the event. :)


Ivy said...

Welcome back Ning and Happy New Year. We missed you. So many exciting things are happening and shall be looking forward to more delicious recipes from you. Unfortunately we only get strawberries once a year and that's in Spring but the good news is that Spring is just around the corner!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Ning, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! I haven't had a post yet to start off the year...

Unknown said...

Hi Ning... looks like you had a great vacation too... the strawberries are lovely... and I just can't wait to see all the recipes you're coming up with... Happy New Year!!! :)

Anonymous said...

Welcome back and Happy New Year!!

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Thanks everyone! Can't wait to get back into the groove :)

Mary Bergfeld said...

Welcome back Ning. Happy New Year! The strawberries look delicious. I can't wait to see what recipes you have in store for us this year.

Maggie said...

Happy New Year and congratulations on your 200th post! The strawberries look great. Here we have six more months til we get local strawberries.

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Happy New Year, Mary!

Thanks Maggie! That's what I thought, strawberries are seasonal. That's why it is wonderful to learn that we are growing them year-round now!

Oggi said...

Welcome back! Lovely photo of Baguio strawberries.

Anonymous said...

Wow!! I ♥love♥ strawberries!! The 1st photo was really cute.. Good luck on that event!!

Soli Deo Gloria said...

Hello Oggi! and thanks!

Hi Galatians! There are a lot of fantastic photos out there. This is just an amateur work :)

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