July 2014 Monthly Roundup

What books and/or magazines did I read this month?
- Crown Spies Series (Book 1: Lion's Lady, Book 2: Guardian Angel, Book3: The Gift) by Julie Garwood

What movies and/or TV shows did I watch this month?
- Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days
- Pride & Prejudice
- Super 8
- Ella Enchanted
- Ice Princess
- Heaven is for Real
- Jane Eyre
- The Prince & ME

What special days did I celebrate and how?
- Cousin Rika's 7th birthday
- Hubby's birthday
- A friend Sophia's SPArty
- Long weekend!

What illnesses or health concerns did I have?
- Thanks to this herbalist, I didn't have my allergies this month. Praise God!

What fun things did I do with my friends and/or family?
- Dinner with Dad (he's here!)
- Covenant Orientation, nice talks.
- Attended a PFO talk by Father Coching
- Hubby's birthday dinner with the family
- BIL's treat at Tim Ho Wan
- Movie marathon with kids

What new foods, recipes or restaurants did I try this month?
- Mesa
- 8 Cuts to celebrate Hubby's Birthday. Pinkberry for dessert
- Alba for Hubby's birthday dinner
- Tim Ho Wan, FTW!

What special or unusual purchases did I make?
- Been wanting to check out the sales this month but thankfully I was able to resist. No shopping this month and hopefully until the next few years (?)

What have you learned this month?
- Don't compare everyone's highlights to your everydays. That's what I learned this month. In social media sites, of course people would upload their highlights. So don't compare your struggles to these things

- Father Coching's talk emphasize that we have to be BRAVE. B-lessed, R-enewed, A-ctive, V-igilant, E-mpowered

- In PFO talks, I've learned that we should invest a lot of time with our kids starting NOW. Do not wait until they grow up. The time is NOW. Make sure that you spend quality time with the family. Spend time deliberately and not just being there (while checking your phone), but talk to them and look them in their eyes.

- I'm thankful for this month. I may have a few challenges, I felt a little sad some days, but I know I'm not ALONE. I'm with GOD.

Inspire Our Little Girls

Are we all guilty?


"Our words can have a huge impact." - I totally agree on this one. I felt actually guilty on some of the things. Thanks to this, I realized something. ♥

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Tim Ho Wan's dimsum and pork buns. Heavenly!
2. Long weekend
3. Movie marathons
4. Coffee
5. Happy Sunday
6. Wonderful talk last Friday by Father Peter Coching
7. Project Pie with friends
8. Good romance novels ♥
9. College friends
10. Blogging

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

Hurray for Holidays!

It's a holiday TODAY hurray! But unfortunately, we didn't know so I wasn't able to prepare for a getaway. Well, it is a perfect day to relax and unwind, right? With all the busy days in the past few weeks, staying at home would be the best thing to do I guess.

But look, I came across the Proclamation No. 831, s. 2014 about the long weekends next year and this is the perfect time to plan ahead. Here are the holidays to look forward for 2015.

January 1 (Thu) - New Year's Day
January 2 (Fri) - Special Non-Working Day (six-day long weekend from December 30 to January 4)
February 19 (Thu) - Chinese New Year
February 25 (Wed) - EDSA Revolution Anniversary (holiday for schools only)
April 2 (Thu) - Holy Thursday
April 3 (Fri) - Good Friday
April 4 (Sat) - Black Saturday (four-day long weekend from April 2 to 4)
April 9 (Thu) - Araw ng Kagitingan
May 1 (Fri) - Labor Day (three-day long weekend from May 1 to 3)
June 12 (Fri) - Independence Day (three-day long weekend from June 12 to 14)
July 17 (Fri) - Eid'l Fitr (possible three-day long weekend from July 17 to 20 pending proclamation when date is confirmed)
August 21 (Fri) - Ninoy Aquino Day (three-day long weekend from August 21 to 23)
August 31 (Mon) - National Heroes Day (three-day long weekend from August 29 to 31)
September 24 (Thu) - Eid'l Adha (pending proclamation when date is confirmed)
November 1 (Sun) - All Saints Day
November 30 (Mon) - Bonifacio Day (three-day long weekend from November 28 to 30)
December 24 (Thu) - Special Non-Working Day
December 25 (Fri) - Christmas Day (four-day long weekend from December 24 to 27)
December 30 (Wed) - Rizal Day
December 31 (Thu) - Last Day of the Year (five-day long weekend from December 30 to January 3, 2016)

Looks like 2015 is going to be another "travel year" for us. Woot, woot!

HUGE Burgers at Burger Project

After a relaxing weekend, for no reason at all, we felt like eating a burger. So we decided to try Burger Project for the first time.


We had truffle fries, onion rings and huge, huge burgers!




Yes the burgers were really huge but I wasn't TOO happy with it. Will probably give it a try again one of these days OR when the burger craving starts again!

Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: What You Wanted.

I've been listening to TFIOS soundtrack for weeks now. Here's one of my favorite song.


Have a nice Sunday, everyone! God Bless you!

What Is the Least Amount of Exercise You Can Do? by Michelle May, M.D.

Here's a nice article that we Moms (and Dads too) might be interested. I know we are too busy with our daily routines that we tend to forget about our daily need of exercise.

Read on...

Current physical activity guidelines for Americans recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (e.g., brisk walking) every week. While this goal may seem modest to some, to those who aren’t physically active at all, it may feel overwhelming and discouraging.

If you want to start an exercise program but feel discouraged, instead of asking yourself, “How much exercise should I do,” ask, “What is the least amount of exercise I can do… most days of the week, joyfully and consistently?”

Do the least amount of exercise?

Yes. Joyfully and consistently. Too often people get stuck, because when the discomfort and difficulty of making a change is too great, you won’t. Instead of focusing on the gap between where you are and where you “should” be, start with a goal that is so small that achieving it is irresistible!

So what are you willing to do joyfully and consistently?

- Walking for five minutes a day?
- Dancing to one song each evening in your living room?
- Taking one flight of stairs at work (then taking the elevator up the other three floors)?
- Standing up, walking around, or doing floor exercises during the commercials of one 30 minute television show?
- Walking one lap around the soccer field during your child’s practice?
- Something else?

You might be saying to yourself, “That’s not enough! That won’t make any difference.” But if it helps you take that first step toward a more active lifestyle, it will make all the difference!

SOURCE.

Goodluck to us parents! (*wink*)

Yummy Loots from Japan

Oh look what we are excited about to try today...


These yummy loots from Japan. Thanks to my sister who brought these goodies.


Oh my, I can't wait to try it ALL!!!

Let's Go GIRLS!

Here's a nice TV ad that is worth sharing here...


Beautiful ad, isn't it? Let's go girls!

*Fistbump*

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Busy but fun weekend
2. Hubby's post birthday celebration
3. Alba, good food and nice place
4. Massage
5. SPArty!
6. Bonding with friends
7. Household last Friday, great discussions!
8. Milk Tea
9. Bonding with family ♥
10. 3 hour nap

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

Revisiting Max's Fried Chicken, It's been a while!

We were looking for a comfort food one Sunday when we came across Max's. We missed their chicken so that's what I had...


Mmmm...it was still the same taste, and definitely still good! And look, we had free dessert too...


Thank you, Max's!


Our Rainy yet Restful Holy Week in Bicol

Our holy week this year was very well spent. Inspite of the bad weather in Bicol, we were able to relax and unwind and bond with the whole family.


Off to the airport with my comfortable skirt and flipflops.

But even if the weather was rainy, we still managed to head to the famous tourist spots of Bicol.

The dirty yet windy beach of Tolongapo

On our second day, we managed to visit Tolongapo and was able to get a couple of fresh air. It was refreshing. I just hope they do something about the trash. Sigh.


Thanks to my inlaws they were able to pull off an impromptu picnic at the hot springs. It was so nice to dip our bodies in a hot spring especially when the weather got so cold and windy.


On the same day, we were able to go to Bulusan Lake as well! So happy to see that the lake was still as clean as ever. Been here 7 years ago and it was well maintained.

For our last stop, on Holy Thursday, we visited Rizal Beach for a quick swim.


Thankful that Mr. Sun showed himself for a couple of minutes. We enjoyed him so much!


We didn't get to visit that much but still, we had a grand time spending time with the family, and the food, my oh my. we indeed enjoyed the food so much. ♥

Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: ALL the Stars by Ed Sheeran


♪♪ Open your eyes and see. The way our horizons meet. Into the night with me. ♪♪

Have a nice Sunday everyone! (*wink*)

Hi-5 is Coming to Manila!

Look Moms and Dads, I'm sure you will look forward to this one...



Come along and join Hi-5 on their biggest concert ever “Hi-5 House Hits” from Dec 19-21, 2014 at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila. You can also sign up at www.vivrefort.com to become a priority customer and receive special offers.

Hurry, book now! Your kids will definitely love you for this. ♥


It's Official - July 29 is a Holiday!

Oh look, here's another day to spend more time with family and friends... July 29 was proclamed a regular holiday throughout the country in observance of EID’L FITR (FEAST OF RAMADHAN).

MALACA√ĎAN PALACE
MANILA

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE PHILIPPINES

PROCLAMATION NO. 826

DECLARING TUESDAY, 29 JULY 2014, AS A REGULAR HOLIDAY THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY IN OBSERVANCE OF EID’L FITR (FEAST OF RAMADHAN)

WHEREAS, Republic Act No. 9177 declared Eid’l Fitr (Feast of Ramadhan) as a regular holiday throughout the country;

WHEREAS, Eid’l Fitr is celebrated by the Muslim World for three (3) days after the end of the month of fasting;

WHEREAS, to promote cultural understanding and integration, the entire Filipino nation should have the full opportunity to join their Muslim brothers and sisters in the observance and celebration of Eid’l Fitr; and

WHEREAS, in order to bring the religious and cultural significance of the Eid’l Fitr to the fore of national consciousness, it is necessary to declare Tuesday, 29 July 2014, as a regular holiday throughout the country.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BENIGNO S. AQUINO III, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by law, do hereby declare Tuesday, 29 July 2014, as a regular holiday throughout the country in observance of Eid’l Fitr (Feast of Ramadhan).

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the Republic of the Philippines to be affixed.

Done in the City of Manila, this 10th day of July, in the year of Our Lord, Two Thousand and Fourteen.

(Sgd.) BENIGNO S. AQUINO III

By the President:

(Sgd.) PAQUITO N. OCHOA, JR.

SOURCE.

The Jr. Chefs last Summer!

Our summer was extra special this year because the kids got to be Junior Chefs at CCA.


They had fun!

They were able to learn a lot of things and they will never forget that wonderful experience.

Look, they even prepared for us during their last day of cooking class...



I'm so looking forward to what they are going to prepare at home. (*wink*)

In Need of Home Renovation after #GlendaPH

After the uber scary storm/typhoon yesterday, we checked the whole house and found out that it needs a major renovation. There were leaks almost althroughout the house and it badly needs a major repair. We really need to set aside a budget for this. Since there are more storms coming in the next few months (since rainy season is here), we need to make our home as ready as much as possible.

Staying at home also allowed us to check the entire house and see which ones to change. Door handles, tower bars, even the shower heads. Of course there are also 48" Drawer slides that need to be replaced after 7 years of use. I'm so happy I found Ovis online. I found that they have so many kinds of drawer slides to choose from. This particular Hettich KA3320 48" drawer slides are a heavy duty, telescoping, precision, full extension drawer slides for high loads, up to 500 lb. capacity, with cushioned in and out stops. And, guess what? It is a chromated steel. This should last for a lifetime!

There are more things that we need to renovate but it can actually wait until next year. Sigh. I just hope and pray that there are no more super typhoon coming soon.

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Covenant Orientation, wonderful and nourishing talks!
2. Fun 7th birthday party of Rika
3. Relaxing Sunday
4. Massage
5. Cupcakes! ♥
6. Good and inspiring speakers
7. The Secret
8. Good health for me and the rest of the family
9. Hubby's birthday today! Thank you God for another year.
10. Smiling and loving kids

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

Hello, EK! We're BACK!

Aaaaah, after exactly a year, we were back at EK!


It was again my sister's (company) family day and we were all so excited!


This year was a bit special because the kids were allowed to ride the major rides already. Yes, they are getting taller everyday! ♥ And I was surprised that they did enjoy Log Jam, Ferris Wheel and more.


The kids are bigger now. And all the more we had fun in EK. I can't wait for another trip to EK next year.



Our Mind Museum Playdate

This was our second activity for 2014 summer, our mind museum playdate.


We met up with our friends and their kids to enjoy for the first time the famous Mind Museum in the Fort.


And, boy, we did enjoy our time there. We all had a great time!


There were so many interesting stuff inside.



I'm so glad we did got a voucher and met up with our friends. It was a day well-spent at the Mind Museum.

Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: Defying Gravity (Different Version)

I feel like I want to defy gravity today...


Have a great Sunday peeps! (*wink*)

As Promised, We're Back at Green Pastures!

Yes, I know I promised myself that I would be back. So here were again at Green Pastures, this time, with the family.

And we came back for this...


The organic and fresh salad. Yum, yum, yum!


We also got to try these three-cheese dip which was oh so yum!


Will we be back again at Green Pastures? Surely!


Look Up from your Phone and Live your Life


YES! I totally agree!

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Fruits from my Dad! Woot, woot!
2. The Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught
3. Relaxing weekend ♥
4. Family
5. Kids having fun in school
6. Popcorner
7. Dinner with my Dad and sister
8. Boneless crispy pata. YUM!
9. Gelato
10. Exercise

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

7 Ways to Reclaim your Life from your Smartphone By Mariel Uyquiengco

I've been doing "internet detox" for quite awhile now and I thought this article is very good. It reminds me of the more important things in my life.

Here are the 7 ways to reclaim your life from your smartphone by Mariel Uyquiengco

1. Turn off notifications
Email, games, news apps – do we really need all of these at the tip of our fingertips? Consider what you absolutely need to be notified of in real time and turn off the notification for everything else. You will be conserving precious battery power, too.

If you get your high from seeing all those likes and comments, save them like chocolate and enjoy them in one big bite at the end of the day.


2. Delete extraneous apps
Just because an app is free doesn’t mean that you should download and use it. So, observe which ones suck your time the most. Is it CNN, Daily Mail, or Candy Crush? Even if you just use them when you are bored, those precious minutes can be used for something more consequential. Quit cold turkey and delete them immediately.

As for emails, it’s best to check your inbox when you’re already on your laptop and ready to start your workday. If you’re worried about getting an urgent message on your email, you can be sure that if it were truly urgent, it won’t be sent via email alone.


3. Put boundaries in place
Protect the sacredness of your time with others and commit to putting away the phone when you are with people who matter to you.

Talk to your family during dinner and enjoy your meal. Look into your child’s eyes and listen to the twists and turns of his story. Join your friends in reminiscing about your childhood escapades. You can do all these when your phone is somewhere out of reach.


4. Unplug at certain hours
If you are like the average Southeast Asian smartphone user spending three or more hours on the Internet, commit to have unplugged time every day. This will allow you to breathe, pursue interests, and accomplish something other than knowing the latest news.

Write, bake, paint; you’ll be surprised with what you can accomplish in the time otherwise spent mindlessly consuming online content.


5. Leave your phone at home
Mobile phones are convenient for connecting people with each other. But when you are going out with the people you want to be in touch with anyway, why bother bringing your phone?

It will serve families well to have uninterrupted time to revel in whatever experience they are having together. Leaving your phone at home makes it easy; just make sure not to lose sight of each other in a crowded place!


6. Make memories, not photos
Because smartphones come with cameras, it is so easy to take photos of each and every move that we make -- and post to Instagram and Facebook, as well.

But let’s make memories, not photos. Besides, the Internet is already flooded with images of various restaurant dishes and vacation spots. You don’t need to add more shots of Boracay’s pristine beaches, Bohol’s adorable tarsiers, or the delectable buffet of a five-star hotel.


7. Go to bed with your spouse, not your phone
According to the study published in the journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, using your smartphone after 9 p.m. causes sleep quantity to decrease at night and affects quality of work in the daytime.

Other than the harmful effects of sleeping with your smartphone, it is infinitely more enjoyable to snuggle with your spouse and your kids. Let your mind rest from the dizzying number of content available anytime. Enjoy your bedtime.

Click here for the rest of the article.

Kimukatsu for the Second Time Around this Month

Aah, yes, another dinner at Kimukatsu!


This is beginning to become our favorite Katsu place. ♥


This time, we were with my Dad and sister. Food was great, as expected. Kids loved the miso soup, rice, unlimited cabbage refill and more.

Aaaaah, Kimukatsu is ♥♥♥.

Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: Chasing the SUN

I love this song by Sara Bareilles...


Have a nice day, everyone! Let's all chase the sun today! (*wink*)

Dork Diaries Books for the Kids

Here are the two books that the kids finish this summer. I'm so happy, I'm really sharing it here!



Dork Diaries: Tales From a Not-So-Talented Pop Star

Nikki Maxwell has been doing everything she can to keep everyone at school from learning the truth--that she's there on scholarship in exchange for her Dad working as the school's exterminator. The last thing Nikki needs is having her friends and--worst case scenario--her crush, Brandon, associating her with the humongous roach on top of her Dad's van! Now it looks like her secret could be about to come out, and Nikki's willing to go to any zany and wacky length to prevent that from happening. The timing seems perfect when a major talent competition is announced with a school scholarship offered as the top prize. Nikki loves to sing and dance and now she gets to have tons of fun with her friends while competing for a chance to free her Dad from his obligation! (And free herself from all that potential damage to her reputation . . .) Once again, hijinks and misunderstandings aplenty ensue, as well as more hilarious and heartwarming moments with Nikki and her friends.

Dork Diaries: Tales From a Not-So-Fabulous Life

Nikki Maxwell is not popular, in fact Nikki Maxwell is the opposite of popular; she's a total dork! But Nikki's hoping that by moving to a new school she might just stand a chance of making some friends and leaving her old lame-ways in the past. But life is never that simple...
Follow Nikki's life through sketches, doodles and diary entries as she starts her new school, battles with her mum for an iPhone and meets her arch-nemisis, the school's queen bee, Mackenzie.

It's very interesting and these are the only books that they really finished. You might want to give these books to your kids too. (*wink*)

What's on your Mind?

I so love this short film about Facebook...

"Facebook can be depressing because everyone else's lives are better than yours... But are they really?"...


So true. Very, very true.

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Fun and Relaxing weekend
2. Movie night
3. Discovered nice songs
4. Household night :)
5. CFC community
6. Pasta and Tacos, YUM!
7. Wine, Cheese and Grapes
8. Coffee to start off the week
9. Photos
10. Clutter Free house (almost!)

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

The Unforgettable Teen Saint Pedro Musical Play

Last summer, another highlight of the activities we had was the TSP or Teen Saint Pedro musical play.


It was the first time for the kids to watch a musical play and we were so glad that they love them!


We love, love the play! Good job to the cast of TSP!