Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Here Comes Summer 2015 (Part 1)

Everybody's excitement in every social media page screams out S-U-M-M-E-R!!! It's the most wonderful time of the year apart from Christmas or when you are a student. Believe me, even parents sigh with relief when summer time comes. No hurried morning madness especially if you're a working mom. This summer is extra ordinary and I would say memorable for us as it is not a yearly happening. Two of my husband's family from abroad are here to spend vacation at the same time and what better way to spend summer is to hit the B-E-A-C-H. Oh yeah! This is the last day of the month and tomorrow, April 1, is officially the start of summer. Exciting noh? Personally, at this point in my life, as much as possible I refrain from too much exposure under the sun. For one, I easily get dark and I care for my skin more at my age now. I don't like excessive sweating too because it's an icky, sticky feeling. But since I have kids already, I enjoy looking at them enjoying the water so I'm equally happy na rin, diba muthers? A hat, a pair of sunglasses and an overload of sunblock will do the trick for me. But for the meantime, let's prepare ourselves first for the complete spiritual cleansing. We are commemorating the Holy Week this week. Let us renew and come ourselves before our God who died on the Cross and sacrificed for us. And gave a new hope for us by rising from the dead. May we have a fruitful, peaceful, restful, blessed and meaningful week.


Fast forward to next week…


We will be having a family gathering. Oh well, it's also the time where family reunions are usually being held because the kids are on vacation too. So it's totally a big event that we are all looking forward to. It'll be an overnight stay in one of the longest running operational beach resort here in the city, the Mergrande Ocean Resort (formerly the Villa Victoria Beach Resort). 

Rewind…

We frequent this beach resort when we were kids about 20 years or so ago. A regular visitor means almost every weekend we were there with my relatives on my father's side. Upon arrival, we changed in our swimming outfits and swam like there's no tomorrow. Me and my cousins would just get out of the water to eat or when it's time to go home already. Then we are knock off to sleep.


At present...

Being in this resort brings back a lot of happy childhood memories. A lot has been changed and it is for the better. Cottages for overnight has improved a lot and in air-conditioned type already, their playground is more child-friendly and as a parent it's a double thumbs-up and a high-five recommended for me. (The giant shoe and the big mushroom structure is still there. I'm glad that they still preserved it.) They have improved and added their recreational facilities such as seminar halls which can accommodate events like weddings, birthdays and the like. Their swimming pool is more exciting than before with the additional slides, waterfalls structure and installed shaded area in its vicinity. Sorry but I haven't taken photos when we were there about 2 weeks ago. But I'd say, I loved it's amenities now including the toilet and bath rooms and the restaurant. I didn't expect their generous amount of serving for an affordable price. We had our breakfast there and for a price range of Php100-140, a serving of their regular breakfast includes a huge cup of rice, 2 servings of sunny side up egg, a bacon (or tocino or longganisa), a choice of tea or coffee and a choice of fresh fruits of juice. And I am amazed at how delicious their breakfast selection is. That time the available fruit they serve is watermelon. It's sweet and juicy and in large serving too. If you'll order their American breakfast, they serve a jumbo-sized hotdog, 3 slices of toasted bread, a butter and a jelly then a choice of either tea or coffee and fresh fruits or juice. I can't help to brag about it because it's really worth every peso you'll spend. I promise to show you in photos the next time we'll visit there and just bombard you with one, less talk…. hehehe. So for now, I leave you hanging. It means I'll make a part 2 series of this post, more on photos next time.


I hope you will also have an exciting, adventure-filled summer with your loved ones blogga' friends!

Thursday, 19 March 2015

The Modern Day Cinderella

Have you seen it? I bet mothers like me with daughters have movie-dated already. My 4 year old daughter and I watched it last Friday the 13th. And I guess I'm the more excited one because being a young girl once I giddy when Ella turns into a beautiful girl with her beautiful dress, steps in to her glittering glass (slippers) shoes complete with a whole bunch of grandiose and echos, hehehe...


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The most coveted glass (slippers) shoes... Stunning!

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Opinion: Though everything is beautiful in the movie, I think the girl
who portrayed Cinderella doesn't fit in the role. Not because she
is not beautiful physically but there's something in her beautiful face
that didn't make me sigh on how beautiful she was. #parangmaykulang

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My date.

I love how the run of the story goes. It was not totally revised I should say. Straight to the point. There was no add-on scene just to give a twist on the story. Maybe the only thing that I think was improved is that Cinderella here is empowered like the woman of today. (And fairy godmother is kinda groovy in this film). Moral lesson of the story: Be kind and have courage. Being kind as the traditional Cinderella we've known and now, coupled with having courage to face the world in times of hostilities. I like the version of this Cinderella because it speaks to the women of today. I believe that even if we are now empowered we should remain in us the kindness and meekness a woman is known for. It's like we are the hope after the storm. A ground of solace from chaos.

I recommend you to watch it. It's a nice movie especially when you bring your daughters with you. A fun bonding activity that you both will surely treasure. #perksofhavingadaughter

Thursday, 12 March 2015

London Diaries 2014 (Part 2): Charity Shops & Tea Cups

For all of you who are not familiar with this, London has several charity shops that sells second hand and even brand new stuff that owners didn't use even once. You won't miss a shop since every area in London has two or more. Some of the charity shops where we frequent to are Salvation Army, British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Princess Alice Hospice Shops, Oxfam to name a few. They are called as such because the proceeds goes to the needy. Each charity shop has its respective recipients depending on their cause. They are legal entities operating in the country. While for us here, we can equate it to the thrift shops or "ukay-ukay" being the seller that benefits. It's not more on the cause anymore… hehehe

Being a thrifty-natured one, we always end up entering into these shops because we can buy items priced from £1 or even less and at the same time helped in their cause in our own little way. So imagine my happiness when I bought Aldo wedge shoes about £7, a Zara belt for only £2, a Havaianas slippers for my daughter for the same price as my Zara belt. There's also this one charity shop where I forgot the name, I saw and bought a brand new (tag still attached) Levi's 501 jeans in black (but unfortunately didn't fit me but I gave it to my mother) that cost me only £4. That's less than Php300.00. It's such a steal! But so much of my random steal finds (to which I plan to make a separate post), here's to one of a charity shop find (or was it a car boot sale find?) that is actually given to me by my ever generous and sweet SIL. Since they moved out to UK na and now based in the US, she gave these pretty tea cups with saucers perfect for tea break and matching plate for a dessert to pair with it.

I was actually inspired to write this post because of Ms. Ellen of PseudoShrink. Hers is a brand new elegant royalty tea cup talaga. But in my mind, hindi naman lalayo din kung ano yung meron ako. Hi Ms. Ellen! If you happen to come across this post of mine, here's my share of tea cups din! Toast to our tea cups, hihihiParang sorority sisters lang ang peg. "Would you like a cup'a (of) tea?"



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It is already a habit for English people to have tea breaks or drink tea. Whittard of Chelsea is a famous brand that sells premium teas and drinks that is renowned worldwide and dates back in 1880's. I had the chance to visit their store and taste their selection of tea and chocolate. I must say that it really satisfied my taste buds more so to my palate. See their various products here.

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This one is my pasalubong for my boss. He like it!


This first set of tea cup I got is more on a Chinese-y inspired design because of the blue and white color combination. Owning something like this inspires me to get fit. Why? Because ang sarap uminom ng tea pag ganito ka elegant and kaganda ng craftsmanship ng tasa. Diba? Not to mention tea  has a lot of healthy benefits. Inom lang ng inom.

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And when we say royalty and elegance, Europe and the Great Britain automatically pops in our mind. The following two sets of tea cups I own now says more of that. Ala Greta Baretto diba? 


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Part of our London trip last October of 2014, we went to museums and visited castles and palaces where the kings and queens have lived. In there, they displayed various kitchen utensils and dinnerwares they used. It is very amazing to see such fine porcelain wares. Talagang royal highness ang dating lang.



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These three are sitting prettily on my cupboard and never used any of it. I love staring at them. But just this morning I thought of using the blue one first for my tea breaks here in the office. It's not only inspiring but it teaches (forces) me to drink tea for health reasons. ;-))

How lovely! Common expression of typical English people when they appreciate things. Couple that with a very warm and welcoming smile and politeness that makes me a happy tourist in London. 

Thursday, 5 March 2015

On Being Healthy, Physically Fit and Losing Weight

Yesterday, I went to see my doctor again after a month of medication. While waiting for my turn, I was browsing a diabetes-issue magazine and stumbled upon an article that's all about the right way to exercise. And I think it's not only applicable for those having the said illness but for everyone's information.

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You choose what category fits your fitness plan.


What I knew all along isn't true at all. I thought when you just sweat it all out, everything is all in. There is a particular exercise routine, frequency, intensity and duration you have to follow pala in terms of your fitness goal. But I think it will also matter on what particular exercise you will undergo. 

My present goal is to be physically fit. But after I weighed myself yesterday, I found out I am 8 kilos heavier. Maybe I have to lose some weight muna then be physically fit after I shed off those stored baggage.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

The Best Vegetable Chips #OnlyInDavao

In this generation, we are gearing towards healthy lifestyle and eating the right way is part of it. I am so happy to introduce to you a homegrown product that is making a name on its own. It is recognized as the best vegetable chips in Davao published in Sunstar Davao, a local newspaper here in the city (March 2, 2015 issue). If you can't read clearly the caption on the photo below, here's for your clearer view:


FRUX'S VEGGIE CHIPS. This healthy alternative to the regular chips you find in the market is a combination of squash, carrots, malunggay, ampalaya, camote tops, alugbati, saluyot and kangkong. This product of Panabo City-based Frux Food Products is always a hit during trade fairs in Davao City. If you happen to travel to Panabo, pass by at the Panabo City Pasalubong Center.


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Once published, you can never go wrong. Highly recommended!
Salted and sweetened variants tastes so good.

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The first time I tried it, my taste buds is into it instantly. Being the junk food lover that I am, I like this more since it has healthy ingredients. No need to worry too much of artificial flavorings that is bad for our system. Its thin, crispy serving is satisfying and cravings are definitely solved.


Aside from its vegetable chips, one product that Frux Food Product is known for and is available in leading local supermarkets is its homemade peanut butter. One thing I love about its spread is that you cannot see oil forming on top of the spread like other brands. It's not greasy and you can really taste the real peanut in the butter itself.

The next time you encounter the name 'Frux', go ahead and grab every product with its name. #GawangPinoy #Davaoproduct #BestVegetableChips #healthychips 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Onitsuka Tiger: Behind the Fever

No! I do not mean the kind of sickness but a brand of footwear. Based on history, it started out making basketball shoes and is a registered trademark of Asics Corporation which I'm familiar with. Oh, well! I am not really a sneaker/rubber shoe fan though having one or two to own is enough to sport a casual and comfort feel and look. I do not have any idea when it comes to rubber shoes and sneakers except for those well-known brands like Nike, Addidas, Fila, Tretorn, Chucks from Converse to name a few. And with this particular Japanese brand Onitsuka Tiger, I would never knew about it until our recent trip to London late of last year that my in-laws introduced it to us this cool brand of shoe. To think that its already making waves here in the Philippines with celebrities already wearing it. Why I didn't know?



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My one and only pair of Onitsuka Tiger. Let me tour you to every part of the shoe...



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I love the color of my Onitsuka. It's very 'London' where I actually bought this.
Like the colors of the British flag.



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A closer look of its design. It's their signature style.
Pardon for the stain. How do I actually get rid off that stain?
Anyone? Please share...



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The bottom sole.



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The insole.

I'm so lucky to have bought a pair for around P1,300.00 Philippine peso. Wonder why it's so cheap? Because I bought it in one of the outlet stores located in Great Britain particularly in Ashford. If only I had the extra money, I would have brought two more for me and hoarded for my family. To think that the local price for that would cost around 5,000.00 - 6,000.00 pesos. Even if I sell it double the price here, it's still way cheaper. Don't you think?


The feel? Very comfortable and easy to walk in. With the color design that I chose, it can perfectly fit to any wardrobe color of my choice. But even if I knew about it, I might have difficulty owning one because of my personal reason: not practical spending for thousands of bucks. Browsing over to their website wants me to own one again. 

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Green is love too! A Valentine's day gift suggestion

In my previous post here, I've said that colors red and brown (for chocolates) signifies love. As we celebrate this month of February with love, naturally we love to shower our loved ones by giving them flowers in red bloom as it is romantic and chocolates in brown as it is sweet to declare our love in our own little way. Well not only those two colors, I would say that green would suffice the meaning of love too. Love for oneself, family, health and well-being. In this generation, we can be creative by giving them something extraordinary but meaningful presents for this Valentine's day. Let's give them green by keeping it healthy. Healthy in the way we intake food into our system by eating the right kind of food. For example, by consuming green leafy and green-colored vegetables as part of our eating routine.


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Freshly picked bounties. You may put this in a decorative container
for a more presentable appearance.


Aren't they glorious and refreshing? Big chunk of tomatoes, japanese cucumbers and three heads of lettuce. Crisp, juicy, hydrating not to mention it costs way cheaper than flowers and chocolates and with more health benefits to add. I'm not saying that I don't like receiving flowers and chocolates from the ones you loved. Who wouldn't? Just saying that if you have limited budget thinking what you could give to your loved ones this Valentine's day, here's one suggestion for a change. Why not? It sure is healthy and your loved ones would think that you are concern too of their well-being not just a commercial stuff Valentine's day nowadays has to offer. 


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My dinner yesterday which I prepared for the household to share.
This is served with grilled tuna belly and squid. Yum!



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These are the dips I have. But I mixed my salad with
Sesame dressing and Parmesan cheese to add flavor to my greens.


For those who are clueless yet of what to give to their loved ones, now here's what I can share. Head now to your nearest market and pick up the freshest and healthiest green bounties that you could give to your loved ones. It's something personal and more meaningful because it goes out with all the love and effort you did. 



Happy Valentine's day to y'all! Cheers to love and well-being!