FOOD - Taco/Taco salad recipe

For the first time last night, Titan and I had homemade tacos. I had a taco salad and he had the traditional tacos. When cooking for two your portion sizes are definitely smaller than what you traditionally see so you have to adjust your recipe accordingly. For something as simple as tacos, you customize it to your own taste buds. What do you like in your taco?

Here's a few photos of the ingredients and final product:

1.  Cook your desired amount of meat on the stove top. I about a pound of ground turkey.

2.  Bake your tacos shells. The directions indicated we place the oven at 350 degree and bake for 3-5 minutes.

3.  Cut your veggies. I'm not a big veggie person so all I used was half a tomato and about a head of iceberg lettuce. 

4.  For taco salad, mix all ingredients together and toss with ranch dressing. I used the taco shells and just broke them into my salad.

Mix cream cheese and salsa to create dip.

Lihing Mui Margarita
-Kirkland brand ready to drink margarita
-Lihing powder


LIFE - it's too short

So much has happened this past week that I've been so busy dealing with life that I didn't have time to write in the blog. These past few days have been rough on our family. We lost a great man, a man who was a big brother to my dad, a father to my cousins, and an uncle to me. Uncle Boy, you will surely be missed. We all know he's in a much better place and knew Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior. I can just imagine him enjoying time with my aunt, grandma, and grandpa all gathered around the dinner table sharing stories and laughing like they would do when they were with us. I know he would want us all to continue on with our lives and do and be the best we could do and be. Uncle Boy, this post is dedicated to you.

The saying is true that we don't know what we have until it's gone. But why is that? For many, it takes loosing something to truly appreciate what you have. I've seen in time and time again from romantic relationships, to material items, to the loss of loved ones. We should all take the time each day to reflect on what we have and imagine what it would be like if that someone or something was no longer there. How would you change your tone of voice? Or how would you change your outlook? It may be hard to grasp but tomorrow is never guaranteed. Let's take a stand to live like it's our last day. Talk, like it's our last conversation. And, bless like how you've been blessed. Once we make these little changes in ourselves, I'm sure we'll appreciate those around us a lot more and vice versa. 


FOOD - Fried Rice

Anytime fried rice is on the menu I'll pay the little extra and order it. In some cases, I'll even eat just that as my meal. I LOVE FRIED RICE! There's many ways to make it and my thought is that it's just a combination of your favorite things. It also makes a good quick meal of combining whatever you have left in your fridge or using left over rice from last night's dinner. I usually make a breakfast style fried rice containing: white rice, scrambled eggs, and either spam or Portuguese sausage, and of course oyster sauce to blend it all together. I've seen a variety of ways for fried rice and if you live or get the chance to visit Oahu, here are my top fried rice spots that I've tried so far. Where are your favorite fried rice places?

ASAHI Grill - Lupchong Fried Rice

Boots & Kimos Fried Rice

Big City Diner's - Uncle Danny's Fried Rice

Elena's Restaurant - Pork Adobo Fried Rice Omelet


LIFE - Earth Day

Happy Earth Day! Now I must admit, I'm not the most sustainable person but I try when I can. I recycle my aluminum cans and glass bottles, try to buy vegetables from my local farmers market, and bring a reusable shopping bag when I remember to get it out of the back seat of my car. Other than that, my sustainable efforts to keep this planet alive are slim to none. I don't drive an electric or fuel efficient vehicle and I don't donate money to save the rain forests. In an additional effort to save our planet, here are a few eco-friendly ideas. What are your sustainable efforts like?

All products and ideas posted in this blog can be found on my Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/irenegalinato/pins


LIFE - Raised in an Asian/American culture

Growing up with parents who were raised in another culture than myself was tough. They did things one way and I learned things another way. If you're like me, most Filipinos or Asians for that matter are raised by your grandparents. Why not right? FREE BABYSITTING! I was raised by my grandparents and aunts in California so I was a little sheltered and were taught the ways of a Filipina.

Grade school was my first introduction to the American culture. Throughout schooling one of the first things I learned was that I have a voice and to use it. Amendment #1 Freedom of Speech. In Asian culture, you're taught to only speak when spoken to. Never ever question your elders even if they're wrong because it's "talking back". And finally, don't make a fuss about anything to others outside your immediate family because it would bring shame to them. In America, we're taught to speak up for what you believe in, encourage questions and opinions, and be loud because you'll get noticed that way. This was my first lesson learned on the differences between the American and Asian cultures.

High school was definitely a game changer. I grew further and further from my parents and I didn't understand the cultural differences and thought they were just big meanies! My American friends had boyfriends and their parents were ok with it but I couldnt. My American friends spent time with their parents and talked to them like they would their friends but I didn't. So many differences caused me to withdraw my relationship with my parents and I always thought they were just too busy or didn't care.

Later in my college years I realized that they acted a certain way and I acted a certain way because of our upbringings and our cultures. My parents worked ALL THE TIME because they were trying to give me a better life. Sure I heard that while growing up but it's true. Yes, my parents were never there because they worked a lot but I'm the one that had a brand new car before I even had my license. Yes, my parents didn't want me to date in high school but they did it so I wouldn't grow up too fast and have to face the emotion of heartache at such a young age.

Now as a young adult, I ask myself what is it going to be like when I raise my kids? Am I going to be like my parents? Or am I going to do everything differently? Only time will tell. Did you go through the same thing like I went through? What are your cultural upbringing stories like? Feel free to share them in the comment box.


LIFE - Pray for Boston

With all the recent activity that's happened to the city of Boston this week, I took a moment to breathe and said a prayer for all those affected. Not only for Boston but for our entire nation. It's times like these that we as a people must come together and lift up our fellow brothers and sisters. Although we've never met, my continued thoughts and prayers are with you. 


Yay it's Friday! And you know what that means... LUCKY I LIVE HAWAII! Today one of the many things I'm grateful for here in Hawaii is our spectacular views. On one side you have the lush green mountains, then you turn 180 and you have the blue ocean. I know there are other places in the world like this but Hawaii is truly one of the few. Happy Aloha Friday!


BEAUTY - Spring nails

Spring is all about color! If you've been dying to spice up your style but haven't taken the plunge yet, spring is the best time of year to try something new. Bright and bold colors is what spring is known for. Nail color is a quick and inexpensive way to add color and pop to any outfit, even if you're still wearing last winter's coat.

Some of my favorite spring nail colors this year...

luxe lacquers  Illamasqua in Superstition available at Sephora

   Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour available at Nordstrom 

  Can't find my Czechbook by OPI available at Amazon

         Mint Candy Apple available at Nordstrom

 butter LONDON - Jasper - Bright Pastel Yellow Nail Lacquer Polish                 Jasper by Butter available at Butter

04_pink_spill_016_2   Bitch Fit available at Ginger + Liz 


BODY & EXERCISE - Lark vs. Owl (sleep)

If you're anything like me, you love to sleep! It's one of the best things in the world! Ideally, I would sleep-in everyday and wake up only when my body clock tells me to. And, if I got tired in the middle of the day, I would take a nap and sleep more! Unfortunately, the majority of us don't have the leisure of doing so. We wake up to get ready for a job we do 40 hours a week, and on our days off there's usually appointments, activities, or house chores that need to be done so there's no time to sleep in then. As we get older, sleep becomes less and less a part of our day. I don't even want to get started with the parents of new born babies. I've heard that sleep is something that doesn't happen very often and your constantly tired. Now I've never been a parent but I am a parent to a four month old puppy and he doesn't let me sleep much either.

According to WebMD the amount of sleep you need depends on your age:

  • Infants require about 16 hours a day
  • Teenagers need about 9 hours on average
  • Most adults need 7 to 8 hours a night for the best amount of sleep, although some people may need as few as 5 hours or as many as 10 hours of sleep each day
  • Women in the first 3 months of pregnancy often need several more hours of sleep than usual

Also, not having enough sleep can negatively affect your body:

One thing I noticed within these last few months though is strange. I wake up before my alarm on my days off and I don't feel so tired in the morning. However, when I wake up to my alarm on the days I have to work, I feel lousy in the morning. Studies show that you shouldn't snooze and snoozing only causes you to become more tired so that could be a contributor to why I feel so bad on the mornings I have to go to work. A goal of mine I have for the rest of the work week this week is to NOT SNOOZE and see how I feel then. What do you do in order to wake yourself up? Do you have a daily routine or are you a snoozer like myself?

I read an interesting article on the Huffington Post on how to become a morning person. Do you think these tricks will work? Let me know, I'd love to hear from ya!


FOOD - Cut the fat, baked chicken

In my attempt to get a little more domesticated, I've been trying out a few recipes. I don't like to fry things for 1, I hate when it pops on your skin and 2, baking is usually a healthier alternative. I've tried this recipe on two occasions now and it's definitely been a hit around the dinner table. I was surprised of how easy and quick it was to make. 

All you need is:
1/2 c parmesan cheese
1 c Greek yogurt (usually one breakfast yogurt for two people)
1 1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1/2 tsp pepper
spread mix all over chicken breasts
bake at 375 for 45 mins



(Necklaces are available at Anthropologie)

One of the many things I love about being a girl is accessorizing! You can turn a simple outfit into a glamorous one by just a little additions such as a statement necklace or bracelet, footwear, and bag. Those who know me well know how much I love to accessorize! I'm always wearing ear rings, necklaces, a watch, and don't even get me started with my shoe and bag collection. Accessorizing is a pocket friendly way of turning that old outfit that you still fit from high school, to a seasons must buy.

In this post, I'd like to feature necklaces. For years I've been wearing long necklaces that look great with slouchy shirts. Recently, I've been strutting chunkier bold necklaces otherwise known as statement necklaces. I like to use a necklace to add a pop of color to my outfit. What's your go to necklace? Do you have a favorite one that you wear everyday? Or do you switch it up like I do?

I found a useful info graph via Pinterest that gave insightful information on what necklaces go well with a variety of necklines. Enjoy!




It's Friday! Here in Hawaii we have a statement "Aloha Friday". So every Friday, I'll feature one of the many things I love about Hawaii. My features will consist of things you can only find or see in Hawaii. So for my first post, it had to be something spectacular. Something that everyone living in Hawaii or even just visited our islands would agree with. Things that make me say, LUCK I LIVE HAWAII.

SUNSETS:  The sunsets in Hawaii are nothing like I've ever seen before. Whenever I visit the "Mainland" I notice how day just suddenly turns into night. It just suddenly gets dark. It's almost like a light dimmer in the room. When I moved back home after being away for college, one of the first things I knew I took for granted were our beautiful sunsets we had here. 

Growing up here we take things for granted way too much. So, whether you're new to the islands or have lived here your entire life, take a moment and watch the sun set. It's an amazing view and something that can not be replicated anywhere else. 

Here are a few of my Instagram photos of sunsets here in Hawaii. Photos really don't do it justice but until you experience it for yourself, these will have to do.

Photo by ireenya 
Photo by ireenya 
Photo by ireenya 
Photo by ireenya 
Photo by ireenya


FASHION - Spring is in the air


One of my favorite things about Spring is that stores start to sell clothes that we actually wear in Hawaii again! See, we don't see much of a winter and our winter fashion consists of long pants and a nice hoodie and possibly boots when it's raining but that's about it. Spring is time for sleeveless tops, bright colors, and statement accessories. My typical go to outfit consists of a nice pair of jeans, a sleeveless top, and either flats or wedges depending on the time of day and situation. I love these outfits and if you see me out and about, chances are I'm wearing something similar. What's your favorite spring fashion trend?




FOOD - Japanese food

One of the things I love about Hawaii is all the different types of food we have here. When people immigrated to the state they brought with them their delicious recipes. In particular, Hawaii is home to many people of Asian ancestry. So of course at almost every corner you'll find an Asian influenced mom and pop restaurant. I love Asian food especially Japanese food! This weekend, Titan and I finally had a date night and decided to try out a newly renovated restaurant in our town. Take a look at our meal. What's your favorite type of food?