I have decided to implement some regularity to this blog. I believe that not only will it give readers something to look forward to on a weekly basis, it will also force me to be more creative as well as provide a focus when I am struggling with writer’s block.
The new schedule will not be too rigid, because anyone with kids — heck, without kids too — knows that life is anything but predictable. So for now, I plan on doing the following:
- Cool Tool Tuesdays, where I feature a favorite item from my life and spotlight it so that others who are not familiar with the product may also benefit from it. A cool tool can be any book, gadget, software, hardware, material, or website that I have personally tried and love.
- Bloggy Thursdays, where I share with my fellow bloggers tips and tutorials to maximize your own blog. While I do not consider myself an expert, I do like to think that after 10+ years of blogging — in addition to my technical knowledge — I know more than the average blogger when it comes to making your blog better and more attractive to readers. (Except for content. I have no real tips on content. 😉 ). Since I currently use WordPress and it happens to be the most popular blogging platform in the world, these tips will mostly cater to the WordPress crowd.
- Reverent Sundays, where I write about an aspect of my faith. This can deal with recent books I have read on Christianity, my thoughts on religion and current issues, as well as particular messages I find touching and/or powerful. I am aware that most of my readers are not religious, and that is fine — you are more than welcome to not read these posts if they make you uncomfortable, enrage you, or bore you to tears. I am open to debates and discussions in the comments section as long as everyone remains respectful.
Now, on to my first installment of Cool Tool Tuesdays…
The two most-used appliances in my kitchen are our rice cooker and the Panasonic NC-EH30PC 3-Quart Electric Thermo Pot.
The rice cooker is a no-brainer for an Asian household that eats rice practically every day. But the electric water boiler and dispenser? I personally had no idea such things even existed before I got married. 😳 However, a water boiler/dispenser was the first appliance that my MIL bought for us and it quickly became one of my favorite items in the kitchen.
We use the Panasonic Electric Thermo Pot to easily prepare tea and other hot drinks, as well as instant dishes that require boiling-hot water. It became indispensable when we had babies — instead of purchasing a bottle warmer or running the bottle under hot water from the sink, we just fill a mug with hot water from the Thermo Pot and let the frozen/refrigerated bottle sit in there for a couple of minutes.
As you can see in the picture above, there are 4 temperatures to choose from (we usually keep it at 190°), and the built-in sensor ensures that your water will stay at that temperature unless specified. The “Lock/Unlock” button guards against unintended dispensing (it automatically locks after just a few seconds after dispensing), and the power cord is the magnetic kind that breaks away easily under pressure. Additionally, the Thermo Pot automatically shuts off if the water level gets too low.
J can’t believe that I never heard of these types of electric water boiler/dispenser units until I got married. He says that they are a staple in all Chinese households — mostly for the tea — and wonders why not all western households have them.
My MIL had actually purchased for us a Tiger brand when we first got married, but it broke after about three years of continued use. 🙁 The specific model we had has since been discontinued, so we got a Zojirushi brand to replace it. However, Zojirushi had one major flaw: there is a big hole at the bottom of the boiler where particulates get caught, so it constantly needed to get cleaned.
My MIL ended up comparing various brands in person before choosing this Panasonic version. We still like the discontinued Tiger one the best, but this is a close second. (It also doesn’t hurt that the Panasonic is the cheapest of the three brands! 😀 )
I love my Panasonic Electric Thermo Pot so much that I gifted it to my parents for Christmas two years ago, and they in turn liked it so much that they purchased an extra one so that they could keep one at home and another at the store.
The Panasonic Electric Thermo Pot comes in three sizes: 2.3 quart, 3 quart, and 4.1 quart.
Disclaimer: the links in this post are Amazon Associates links, where I will get a small percentage of the purchase price if anyone orders through these links.
I LOVE your posts about how to work a blog – they are so useful.
We received a rice cooker as a wedding gift that bakes bread and cakes! awesome, huh? We have yet to use those functions but its good to know they are an option.
Will this re-boil on its own to maintain the selected temperature? Ours seems to stop warming the water after a while, and requires us to push the re-boil button on our own…usually when we need hot water at that instant!
Oh, definitely. That’s the best part about it — that’s always ready with hot water when we need it!
Thanks for this post!!! Hubby has recently started mentioning that he wants an electric water boiler thingy. There’s too many options out there so now I think I’ll just try this one. 😀 Good thing his birthday is coming up!
Thanks for posting about this! My hubby and I have been talking about getting one for forever (we’re probably the only Chinese household without one!) but I have to admit I’ve given more priority to stocking my kitchen with shiny All Clads or colorful Le Creusets since they’re just more fun and pretty! (And technically I can use those to boil water too) Anyway, I wanted to tell you that your post was super helpful to me since we’ve been meaning to post a facebook status update asking all our friends to recommend their favorite model, and I love that you’ve tried all the major brands. Since most of my friends have Zojirushi’s I was leaning towards that (and I love my Zojirushi rice cooker) but put off the purchase because it is so expensive and again, not colorful or shiny 🙂 Also, overall, I just love your blog! This is my first time commenting and I’ve learned so much from you – on a wide variety of topics from parenthood to…bb creams! 🙂
I agree that Zojirushi makes some of the best rice cookers out there — we own a Zojirushi rice cooker ourselves! And thanks for commenting! 😀
I think thats similar to the one we have! Its awesome and soooo much better than the kind you have to hand pump.
I’ve never heard of that but it looks like it’d be super nice to have! I’m excited about the new series! 🙂
We have a Zojirushi and LOVE it. Got it over a year ago. I think the cleaning really depends on how hard you water is. We don’t have much of an issue. 🙂
I haven’t thought about that, but now that you mention it, we DO have hard water problems here (I usually need to re-soap while doing the dishes). Thanks for mentioning it!
We have one of those electric hot water pots too! My in-laws and husband didn’t even know what I was talking about until I brought one home. I’m totally surprised that only us Chinese people use this… I grew up with one in my household for as long as I can remember!
This was quite interesting – I’m assuming you don’t have kettles in the US then?
Did you mean “kettles in China”? Because most U.S. households do have kettles, but do not have these electric water boilers/dispensers. But it is the opposite in Chinese households (at least the Chinese households I know of).
I love your new planned schedule and am looking forward to all 3 types of posts every week! And we use our hot water boiler every single day!! 🙂
Thanks for sharing your info. I truly appreciate your efforts and I am waiting
for your further write ups thank you once again.