soon will be our 10th anniversary

In less than 2 weeks is our 10th year anniversary.  Time flies when you married Mr. Fun.  There haven't yet been a dull day with Collin.  If we're bored he will come up with something to do !  Like a WWF or a MMA match (where I'm always the one ended up with a tini bruise or two).  Most often though, he likes to scare or annoy me.  Like the time he pretended he choked and stopped breathing, or turned off all the light and pretended to be a ghost, or rap horribly with vietnamese accent...he's always up to something.  Someday he would disappeared on me on a whim and let me go searching, yelling for him.  He likes spontaneous hide/seek game, and got our daughter to do it too !!  It might sound like I'm complaining but reality is, I really really REALLY like being married to C.  He's so fun to be with :D

We got engaged on Skaha Lake, Penticton.  Pic. taken after we both cried our eyes out !!!
As this year is a milestone for us, we have been planning for a trip to sunny Hawaii since spring.  We figured that baby Lovebug will be 6 months by August, she should do ok with flying, eating out at restaurant, chilling at the beach, etc, etc.  BUT came June, life and all it's unexpected gifts put that plan into a screeching halt.  Lovebug can sit and crawl at like 18 weeks :/ she's so active that eating out isn't so much fun for me (she only wants her mama).  I  dread going on a vacation where the very thought of eating at restaurant strike a fear in my heart :-(  Baby squirming, fussing, throwing toys around, and ultimately will shriek at the top of her lung.  I can picture C rushing to inhale his food, Kaila would get angry because she doesn't like to be hurried, and my dinner will surely get packed to go.  That, totally is NOT my idea of a vacation.

Along with Lovebug's advanced development, my hubby recently just became an associate of an architecture firm ! and can't take off for long as there's a project he needs to take care of.   I'm so happy for him because he's been so faithful and trusting in the Lord.  This is an answered prayer.  We can trace out the path that the Lord leads Collin on to where he is.  It's pretty amazing because He brought the right people into C's life to make things happened the way they did today.  Yes, timing could be better but it's alright, we'll make it work.

A tiny bit of me kind of feel bummed out that we can't be in Hawaii but secretly, a huge part of me thank the good Lord that I don't have to fly.  I'm terrified at the thought of being up in the air (beside a squirming baby).  And no, this has nothing to do with the fact that I'm 4 feet 11 & 3/4 of an inch.  It's just built into my being, in my fibers and I can't shake it off.  I have aerophobia !

So, the final question I have is, with all these blessings: an active 5 months who think she's 1, a husband with new career adventure, and team Truong is still going strong >> How do one go about celebrating these ?   Not sure what to do to make it extra special :(  My mom can take our 2 little monsters :) for about 4 hours.   We discussed what we like to do already but still need more ideas.  If you have some, please do share !!!  thank you in advance :)   

how to cook perfect moist hard boiled egg

There's hard boiled egg and there's 'perfect' hard boiled egg !!!  I didn't know that.  For years I hated hard boiled egg until my mommy friend, Tanya, shared with me her secret to boil a perfect egg.  Egg that has a nicely firmed white and a moist soft yolk, no chalk-like taste and texture. 

I was doubting her, giving her an raised eye-brow when she excitedly share with me her how-to.  How hard is it to boil an egg ?  water, egg, let boil, take out, eat !  there's other way ?  there's technique to boil an egg ???  EGG ???  What ?!?!?!  YES Tanya said.  Just try it.

'Just try it' and I did ! and readers, I'm now a believer.  It seems I've been boiling eggs the wrong way all these years.  I was so impress with how they turned out I have to post it up.  Tanya was so right !  I will never go back to cooking egg my old way again. 

Here's the secret (not so much of a secret anymore :-) :

- place eggs in a pot
- add water to cover the eggs
- bring to boil
- REMOVE from stove immediately and cover with lid
- let stand for 20 minutes

Crack, Peel, and Enjoy !

My daughter Bee loves them so much (used to hate boiled egg like her mama), she asked for 2.  Since the organic eggs were petit in size, I let her have my share.  Seeing that I can't take my eyes of her last bite, Bee was kind enough to spit out a chunk for me to chow on !!!  very soft tender yolk and just-set white.  Wow !  Who knew !

precious moment : Lovebug can stand !

This morning, after putting Lovebug into her crib, I turn away to grab a burp cloth and when I turn back, she was STANDING !  She was holding onto the crib rail but the girl was STANDING !!! she's like just 5 months !!!  She gots strong thighs :D

natural home made laminate / tile floor cleaner recipe

I prefer hardwood floor over carpet any day !  However with my little baby going through the stage of spitting up and drooling, our once clean laminated hardwood is now dull, greasy and grimy looking !  Yuk !!!  I don't like store bought cleaner so I googled up natural recipe for floor cleaner.  I'm so glad I came across this this website, but it contained ingredients for an all purpose cleaner spray and what I'm looking for is just a natural solution to mop my floor with.  I like that all the ingredients can be found in my cupboard so I decided play around with them and see what worked. 

Here's what I got:

- 4 litre of warm water
- 1 cup vinegar
- 2/3 cup of rubbing alcohol
- 3 or 4 drops of dish detergent

Now all you need is a bucket to mix the solution in and a mop to clean your floor !!!  Easy right ?

I did use a bucket at first but it wasn't safe from my daughter !  who jump at any chance to play with water !  so I have to put the bucket away, and gage and fill up my bathroom sink with warm/hot water.  Add in the other ingredients and swirl them around to mix (if I have some orange peels lying around, I throw them in and squeeze the oil out !).  Then I use my old face towel to soak in the solution, wring it and stuck the 4 corners of it in my Swiffer sweeper (the basic kind).  I mop 1 room first, then take towel back to my bathtub (not sink) to rinse, then dip in the sink solution again for the next room (repeat for each room :-)  I mop my laminate and tile floors with this solution and it cleaned them very well !  I tested with my finger and it's squeaky clean. 

U pick fruits and veggies Greater Vancouver Fraser Valley BC

It's that season again !  we love blueberries picking !  I'm going to wait for another week for those blue rubies to plump up and will be taking them home by the boxes.  Not sure where to go for blueberries picking ?  here are some local farms:

British Columbia, Canada U-Pick Farms and Orchards *

Greater Vancouver - Richmond Area

Cherry Lane Farm - Uses natural growing practices, apples, Honey from hives on the farm, Cider mill (fresh apple cider made on the premises)
9571 Beckwith Road, Richmond, BC V6X 2L4. Phone: 778-833-3379.
Open: Late May to September 4th: Monday to Saturday, from 10 am to 5 pm; September 5th to October 1st: Saturdays from 10 am to 5 pm; October 2nd to November 15th: Please call my cell (778-833-3379) for service.
Directions: Going east-bound on Bridgeport Road, take the last left before the Oak Street Bridge (Gage road), and then take a right on Beckwith Road gong east-bound to the end of the road. There will be a gravel path beside the cherry trees on which you can park and make your way over to the large (and very noticeable) blue shed. Click here for a map and directions.
Zucchini: July-September
Apples (many varieties): July-November
Grapes (green and red): July-September
Kale, Broccoli, and Cabbage: July-October
Beans (romano, filet, and plain green beans): July-September
Tomatoes: late July-October
Squash: August-October
Plums: early-mid September.
We use natural practices, but are not seeking organic certification. Payment: Cash, Cheque. Starting August 2011, we will also be selling Milk Thistle seeds. (ADDED: January 10, 2010) (UPDATED: May 24, 2010) (UPDATED: July 05, 2010)

DFG Blueberries - Uses natural growing practices, blueberries,
11071 Blundell Road, Richmond, BC V6Y1L4. Phone: 604-273-5829
Email: Click here for a map and directions.

Crops are usually available in July, August, September.
Open: Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 6pm. We use natural practices, but are not yet certified Organic. Payment: Cash, only. (UPDATED: August 05, 2008)

No.5 Blueberry Farm - Uses natural growing practices, blueberries,
7040 No.5 Road, Richmond, BC v6y2v2. Phone: (604)-836-7888

Open: July to Mid September 7 days a week, open 9am til 9pm.

Directions: Click here for a map and directions. We use natural practices, but are not yet certified Organic. Payment: Cash, only. (UPDATED: July 18, 2011)

G J Farm - Minimizes chemical and pesticide use, beans, raspberries (red), strawberries,
11300 Number 4 Road, Richmond, BC V7A 2Z8. Phone: 604-272-4033.

Open: Only on certain days, weather influenced, call for availability, from 9 am to 6 pm. Click here for current open hours, days and dates.

Directions: Turn south from Steveston Highway, it will be first white shop to your left, signs will be posted for G J Farm. Click here for a map and directions. We minimize use of pesticides and other chemicals. Payment: Cash, Debit cards, Visa/MasterCard. German Yellow Potatoes in 50 pound sacks, cabbage for sauerkraut, Pink Romano beans. (ADDED: June 22, 2011)

G.S. Farm - Strawberries, Blueberries, Cherries, Walnuts, Hazelnuts,
11400 #4 Road, Richmond, British Columbia. Phone: 604-454-4411

Open: Call for for hours and availability. Directions: Call for directions. Payment: Cash, only. (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: July 14, 2010)

Comments from a visitor on July 14, 2010: "Blueberries are raised with organic practices, but not certified. Not sure about the rest of the crops."

Greater Vancouver

D&G Farm - Uses natural growing practices, blueberries,
19658 Richardson Road, Pitt Meadows, BC V3Y 1Z1. Phone: 604 465-0279

Open: Saturday and Sunday 9am to 6pm Weekdays by appt only. We use natural practices, but are not yet certified Organic. Payment: Cash, only. (ADDED: August 13, 2008)

Fraser Valley

AppleBarn Pumpkin Farm Ltd. - Apples, pumpkins, pumpkin patch-pick in the field, pumpkin patch- already gathered from the field, straw or hay bale maze, and prepicked produce, snacks and refreshment stand, restrooms, picnic area, tractor-pulled hay rides, face painting, pony rides, petting zoo

333 Gladwin Road, Abbotsford, BC V2T 5Y1. Phone: 604-853-3108. Fax: 604-859-6170.
Email us at:

Directions: Hwy 1 to Clearbrook Road. Left on Clearbrook Road. Left on Huntington Road. Right on Gladwin . We are open September, October. Our hours are: Monday to Saturday from 9-5 Sun 11-5 Payment: Cash, only.

Maan Farms - Uses integrated pest management practices, blueberries, pumpkins, raspberries (red), strawberries, picnic area, petting zoo, farm animals, birthday parties, school tours
790 McKenzie Road, Abbotsford, BC V2S 4N7. Phone: (604) 308-2205.

Open: Monday through Sunday, from 10 am to 5 pm. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Picking updates: Click here for picking updates.

Directions: Take exit 92 and head south along Highway 11 towards the border. Turn right onto Vye Road. The farm is at the corner of Vye and McKenzie. Click here for a map and directions. Strawberries: Mid June to mid July Raspberries: July through mid August Blueberries: Mid July through August Corn Maze: Late August through October. We use integrated pest management practices. Payment: Cash, Debit cards, Visa/MasterCard. Click here for our Facebook page. (UPDATED: June 27, 2011) (ADDED: May 19, 2009) .

Comments from a visitor on June 28, 2010: "Maan Farms of Abbotsford B.C. is not organic. They apply non-emergence herbicide to the strawberry patch in the spring which is typical practice for all farms in this region."

Taves Family Farms Applebarn - Uses integrated pest management practices, apples, pumpkins, corn maze, Cider mill (fresh apple cider made on the premises), farm market, concessions / refreshment stand, restrooms, picnic area, Bounce house, Jumping pillow, pony rides, petting zoo, farm animals, birthday parties, school tours, events at your location (call for info)
333 Gladwin Rd, Abbotsford, BC V2T 5T1. Phone: 604 853 3108.

Open: From September 1 until October 31st. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Picking updates: Click here for picking updates.

Directions: Click here for a map and directions. We use integrated pest management practices. Payment: Cash, AmEx. Click here for our Facebook page. Picking your own apples is a fantastic family experience. We have two orchards where we offer U-Pick in Abbotsford, BC. And, since our dwarf apple orchard is loaded with fruit, and at the perfect height for the younger ones, it’s a wonderful way to spend the day with friends and family.(UPDATED: October 01, 2012)

Willow View Farms - Apples, raspberries, blackberries, plums pears, pumpkin patch, hayrides, petting zoo, and sweet corn sometimes.
288 McCallum Rd, Abbotsford, BC V2S 8A2. Email:

Open: We will re-open in July for berry sales; Petting Barn opens in September and October on Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 5:30 pm and Sundays from 11 am to 5:30 pm; November and December on Tuesday thru Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm; Closed Sunday and Monday. U-Pick raspberries and blackberries will be available in July. Details will be updated by late June. (UPDATED: April 21, 2013, from their website)

Greater Vancouver - Delta Area

Bissett Farms (also Westham Island Estate Winery ) - blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, tayberries, boysenberries, red and black currents
2170 Westham Island Rd, Delta, BC. Phone: 604-946-7139. Alternate phone: 604-946-7471.

Open: the farm is open June to August, 8 am to 6 pm and the Winery is open year round from 10:30 am to 5 pm. U-Pick and Ready picked berries in season. Visit Delta’s first winery after picking or purchasing your berries for a taste of the berries in a glass. (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: July 19, 2009) (UPDATED: September 13, 2009)

Emma Lea Farms - Strawberries, raspberries, tayberries, blueberries, blackberries, blackcurrants
2727 Westham Island Road, Delta, BC V4K 3N2. Phone: 604-946-8216. Uses integrated pest control management. Wagons and containers available for use while picking. Has picnic tables and ice cream stand. Cash only.

Greater Vancouver - Maple Ridge Area

Formosa Nursery - blueberries
12617 - 203rd Street, Maple Ridge, BC. Phone: 604-465-3359.
Email: Alternate phone: 778-895-3268.

Open: Usually available in July and August from 9am - 9pm, Please contact us ahead to confirm u-pick hours for the day you are coming, or to make special arrangements. (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: July 19, 2009)

Greater Vancouver- Surrey Area

Blueberries U-Pick - Pick your own blueberries
18064-32 Avenue, Surrey, BC V3S 0L5. Phone: (604) 290-4081. Open: July, August and September. Call ahead to ensure berry availability.

Surrey Farms - pumpkins, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries
5180 – 152 Street, Surrey, BC. Phone: 604-574-1390. Fax: 604-574-1558.

Open: every day from May 1 to October 31, 8 am to 7 pm. All types of vegetables in season; Okanagan fruit in season.

Tri Star Nurseries & Landscape Supplies Ltd. - Uses natural growing practices, blueberries, U-pick and already picked, events at your location (call for info)
5047-184 Street, Surrey, BC V3S 0L5. Phone: 604 576 6732. Fax: 604 576 6695.

Open: February to March 15: Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm; March 16 to September: Monday to Saturday from 8:30 am to 6:00 pm, Sundays from 12:00 to 5:00; October to December 24: Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm; Closed: December 25 to January 31. Click here for current open hours, days and dates.

Directions: Click here for a map and directions. Blueberries are available from end of June through September 31st. We are open for Christmas trees from Thanksgiving until Christmas eve. We use natural practices, but are not yet certified Organic. Payment: Cash, Debit cards, Visa/MasterCard, AmEx. (ADDED: June 14, 2013)

Greater Vancouver- Langley Area

A and J Farms - grapes, plums, pumpkins, winter squash, walnuts, U-pick and already picked, restrooms, picnic area, petting zoo, farm animals
26032 16th Avenue, Aldergrove, BC V4W 2S1. Phone: 6048564206. Fax: 6048564206

Open: September to November, please check website for hours of operation and openings. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Directions: Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, only. You picked and picked hazelnuts are also available. Come and enjoy our natural chemical free environment in this partially wooded farm with both domestic and wild birds and animals. (ADDED: January 18, 2011)

Aldor Acres Farm - Apples, Christmas trees-you choose and you cut,
24990, 84 Avenue, Fort Langley, BC . Phone: (604) 888-0788. Email:

Open: daily 9 am to 5 pm from Sunday, September 24 through to Tuesday, October 31. School groups must make reservations. Individual families are welcome at any time. The cost is $5.00 per person (anyone of walking age) or $22.00 per family Payment: Cash, Check. Fort Langley County

Clingan Blueberry Farm - Blueberries, Picked and U-pick, Frozen as well.
24576 32 Avenue, Langley, BC V2Z 2J5. Phone: 604-534-7360. Email: or Email:

Open from mid June through August each year. From 8 am to 8 pm 7 days a week. Blueberry varieties are Dukes and Bluecrop. (UPDATED: June 21, 2009, from their website)

Comments from a visitor on July 26, 2012: "This is not a u-pick farm until they fill all their customers orders for blueberries. They open for u-pick at the end of the blueberry season"

Driediger Farms - blackberries, blueberries, currants (red and black), raspberries (red), rhubarb, strawberries, U-pick and already picked, snacks and refreshment stand, picnic area
23823 - 72nd Avenue, Langley, BC V1M3P8. Phone: 604-888-1665. Fax: 604-888-1502

Open: We are open early June to mid August everyday from 8 am to 8 pm; We encourage you to call us to make sure the fields are open for picking before coming out. You can bring buckets or buy them from us to use and take home; Families welcome; (No pets in fields please;).

Directions: Easy to follow directions and maps are located on our website. Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, Visa, MasterCard, Debit cards. We also have fresh baked pies, jams, honey, BC grown vegetables and fruits. Click here for our Facebook page. 2011 Upick price is $1.50 per lb. Hosting Langley Eats Local August 6, 2011. (UPDATED: June 24, 2011) (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: July 18, 2009)

John & John's farm - U-pick certified organic blueberries, picnic area
4015 244th street, Langley, BC v2z 1m8. Phone: 604-803-9185.

Open: 9:00 to 7:00 daily; Mid July, August. Directions: Call for directions. Payment: Cash, only. Certified Organic blueberry farm. U-pick and freshly picked blueberries for sale. Frozen berries also available all winter. (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: August 07, 2010) (UPDATED: July 10, 2011)  

Pacific West Perennial Growers - No pesticides are used, beets, broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, eggplant, flowers, herbs/spices, lavender, melons, onions, peppers, pumpkins, summer squash, tomatoes, other vegetables, U-pick and already picked
22051 - 56th Avenue, Langley, BC V2Y 2M8. Phone: 604-532-1898. Fax: 604-532-1897

Open: Weekends starting mid - July from 10am to 5pm.

Directions: Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, Debit cards, Visa/MasterCard. We do not use pesticides on crops. Along with the u-pick vegetables, browse the nursery for perennial plants, flowers and herbs. We will also have sun and shade perennial planters and herb planter boxes for your garden and patio. Bring bins, baskets and recyclable bags if possible. (UPDATED: June 12, 2013) (ADDED: May 24, 2013)

Fraser Valley

The Apple Farm - apples, pears, plums
4490 Boundary Road, Yarrow, BC Canada V2R 5J3 (604- 823-4311, Fax 604-823-4669) - gourmet apples, pears, plums, fresh cider, press your own apples, tours, more.

Barking Dog Farm - Blueberries, lavender
Art on the Farm, 1162 Iverson Road, Columbia Valley, BC. Phone: 604-858-5398. Email:

Open: ONE day only: August 15 (in 2009). Art on the Farm is an annual event - it is an artist's fair including locally made products such as soap, weaving, iron-work, greeting cards, home preserves, jewelry, home-baked pies, pottery, photography etc. They also have u-pick blueberries during the event:)
Comments from a visitor on June 15, 2009: "LOVE it!!!" (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: June 15, 2009)

Chilliwack Pumpkin Patch/Corn Maze - Apples, pumpkins, and prepicked produce, snacks and refreshment stand, restrooms, picnic area, petting zoo, farm animals, birthday parties, school tours, events at your location (call for info)
49501 Yale Rd West, Chilliwack , BC v2r 4l6. Phone: 604-819-6203

Directions: From the # 1 highway take exit 109 head S.E. down Yale Rd West travel 1km down Yale rd W. and you will see us on the left hand side across from Chilliwack Golf and Country Club And for a map to our farm, click here. Crops are usually available in September, October.

Open: Maze opens Aug 17. Aug hours Tuesday to Sat. 1pm-9pm, Sept/Oct 31 from Thur -Fri 6pm-9pm, Saturday from 1pm-9pm Sunday and Holidays from 1pm-6pm, Halloween night 6pm-9pm The apples, Sunflowers and Indian corn should be ready mid September. The Pumpkins and Gourds should be ready the beginning of October.  From very very large to small minis and from bright orange to white pumpkins!! Come and see our NEW goat walk too and feed our goats!! OUR PLACE MAKES THE BEST SCHOOL FIELD TRIP, we give out many free educational, agriculture handouts Payment: Cash, only. Our farm has been developed to get THE FAMILY back on the farm, having a great outing together that is fun for the very young to the very old. Our place and maze IS wheel chair and stroller accessible.

Forstbauer Natural Food Farm - ORGANIC pick your own certified organic produce such as blueberries, beets, blue lake pole beans, carrots, chard, dill cucumbers, kale, potatoes, pumpkins, summer and winter squash, zucchini
49350 Prairie Central Road, Chilliwack, BC. Phone: 604-794-3999

We are certified organic and bio dynamic. Learn about the principles of bio-dynamic farming. You are invited to experience harvesting your own , and many other vegetables. They also sell organically raised beef and have certified organic / bio-dynamic Okanagan fruits. (UPDATED: August 10, 2009)

Krause Berry Farms - strawberries, blueberries and raspberries.
6179-248th Street, Aldegrove, BC, V4W 1C3, Canada. Phone: 604-856-5757

Directions: click here for a map and directions. Also prepicked blackberries and corn.

Sandhu Farms - Minimizes chemical and pesticide use, blueberries, restrooms
19393 Dewdney Trunk Road, Pitt Meadows, BC V3Y 2R8. Phone: 604-465-4728.

Open: 7 days a week from 7:00 am to 6:30 pm.

Directions: If you are coming from Vancouver take Highway 1 to exit 44 (just before the Port Mann bridge). Follow the exit to the Mary Hill By-pass. Take this by-pass into Pitt Meadows and turn right on to the Pitt River bridge (Lougheed highway). Follow Lougheed highway until Harris Road and turn left (heading north). Then turn right at the first stop sign on to Dewdney Trunk Road Our farm is the second building on the left. There is a big blue house and a barn with a red roof. Click here for a map and directions. Blueberries: July 1o to September 1. We minimize use of pesticides and other chemicals. Payment: Cash, only. (UPDATED: August 03, 2010)

impromptu garden tea party

After swimming lesson, on the way home Bee asked if we can go make tea.  The weather today is nice and cool so I suggested we have a tea party out in our back yard instead.  The moment I realized what I said, I regret saying right away !!! because I'm so hungry !  I'm not sure how long I can hold out for, since tea party is time consuming :-/   Before I can suggest something else, Bee excitedly announced "tea party mommy", I knew then I got to follow through. 

Once we got home, I rushed to the kitchen and quickly made some tea sandwiches:  cucumber, egg salad and nutella.  We got some cherries and strawberries already so I just need to cut up some cantaloupe, as Bee likes them.  Instead of tea I got lemonade mixed in with some carrot juice.  I also quickly made coconut jelly in the small glasses and topped with slices of strawberries. 

An hour and 1/2 of prepping and cooking, and we're all ready for our little tea party !  It was fun to have my mom dress up with us girls :)  we sat out in the yard eating, talking, laughing, watching butterfly coming in and out of our garden.  I even forgot how crazy messy the state of my kitchen is in :)  It was all in all a fun day.