Monday, December 31, 2012


In about eight hours, we bid goodbye to 2012 and welcome a fresh new year. 2012 has not been exactly in my favor. The odds were mostly against me. I'm not complaining because at the end of it all, I realized I am tough woman who is ready to face any thing with the love and support of my family and inspiration from my children. No new year's resolutions for me. I only have goals. (See "To Do Before I'm 40" side bar.)

I am optimistic that 2013 will be better. I have an upcoming promotion to begin with and a travel getaway abroad with my beloved sisters, but my dear husband has to leave the country and work abroad. I will be officially an OFW wife on January 16th. It will not be easy. We've sat and talked with the kids, aged 4 and 3, and our little boy said that he'd rather not go to an expensive school para wag lang umalis si Daddy. Sad daw sya kasi hindi kami complete. Coming from a 4-year old, that was heartbreaking. I haven't completely absorbed that Jowell is leaving in two weeks, but when 2013 kicks in and the countdown to his departure begins, I'll die a little every day. We will survive.

2012 has been a tough year, but I'm just glad it did not end when Gangnam Style reached one billion views.  We have another 365 days to spend with our love ones, correct the mistakes of the past, reach the goals we missed. We all have another chance to be better persons. Cheers to 2013!!!

From my family to yours, a happy, blessed, and prosperous new year.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Food Trip A-Z: Xin Wang Hong Kong Cafe

Lot 199, 1100-1101 (EM)
SM Mall of Asia
Central Business Park
Bay City
Pasay City 1300,
Metro Manila

This is such a pathetic food trip entry not because the food was bad, but because we dined here almost four months ago and I can't find pictures of food we ordered. Gah! I can't even remember a thing we ordered, but hey, this is "X" and there are not that many restaurants that start with "X", di ba? So, spare me. Hahaha.

I remember the food to be huge, shareable, and affordable. Taste is masarap naman, but not remarkable na mapapa-ooohhh ka. Not your typical Chinese resto. It's a fusion of east meets west. The resto was jam-packed even if it was almost closing time. When we were leaving, may mga papasok pa. I guess they close late.

If you're in MOA, I suggest you try it. Maski once lang para may "X" na din kyo.

31 Things I'm Thankful For: Day 2

Taken last October 26, 2012 when the kids attended Spooktacular at Active Fun, BHS.
I've always wanted to have kids on my own. There was even a time when I was willing to be just a mother and not a wife. I'm thankful that God made me both. My children are the essence of my being. I live because of them. I try to become a better person because of them. They are love. They are happiness. They complete Jowell and I. Milo and Pretzel are our most precious treasures. I can no longer imagine life without them. They are our lives. One day they'll grow up and have their own lives separate from us, but I'll always be grateful that God chose me to be their Mommy. I might have done some very remarkable things in my past that I was blessed with these two awesome human beings. I love you both, always and forever.

31 Things I'm Thankful For: Day 1

My n@wie sisters started a thread on our Yahoo! group a few months ago on five things we are thankful for this year. I've been meaning to join that thread, but had a hard time figuring out the things I was grateful for. 2012 was a tough year for me. There were more challenges than blessings, but as the year ends, I've come to realize that I still have a lot of things to be thankful for. The challenges were blessings in disguise.

Every day for 31 days, I will blog one thing I am thankful for for this year and my first gratitude goes out to my husband.

Taken on our 4th wedding anniversary in Bohol.

Jowell is not perfect, but he is my perfect mate. He's a Gemini and I'm a Scorpio and yet we manage to live with our huge differences and incompatibilities. Did you know that Gemini are Scorpio are the most incompatible of signs? He's the life of the party, I'm the kill joy party pooper. He can easily make friends and I open up to chosen few. He is my complete, total opposite, but I love him - all of him.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Yummy Sunday: The Best Buttered Chicken

We went to Baguio last summer and I'm thankful na nasaraduhan kami ng Cafe by the Ruins or else I've missed the best buttered chicken in the country. We went to Solibao to have dinner. It's a small restaurant located at the ground floor of the Puso ng Baguio Building. We ordered quite a number of food on their menu, but their buttered chicken stood out. It was better than Bon Chon's.

The star of the night.
I 'll commute to Baguio every day just to have a bite of Solibao's buttered chicken. It was that good.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Disney Live! Milo and Pretzel's Rockin' Road Show Experience

I've been wishing to bring the kids to a Disney musical since last year. Two shows came and went and my wish remained, well, a wish. But today, it was granted. We scored discounted tickets from Ensogo. So, instead of a hefty P2,300, we only paid P1,380 per person with seats at the patron section. So today, my sister, Milo, Pretzel, and I trooped to Smart Araneta Center to watch Disney Live! Mickey's Rockin' Road Show.

Our discounted tickets courtesy of Ensogo.
The timing of the show was perfect. I have unconfirmed news from Milo's Inang Rose that he ranked second in his class together with his other two classmates. This was the perfect reward for him. He loves the Toy Story trilogy and watched the movies quite a number of times. As in higit na sa sampu. Ganun nya ka-love si Buzz. Pretzel was just salingpusa. Hindi sana namin sya isasama, but naawa si Yaddy nya kaya ni-libre nya ng tickets his favorite daughter. And, I'm truly glad that we tagged the our little princess along because she enjoyed the show more than her Kuya. Pero nung si Woody, Jesse, and Buzz na ang nag-perform, nawala na pagka-seryoso ni Milo. Ang laki na ng smile nya.

As early as 11:30 AM, we were at Araneta na. We had to claim our tickets first and we wanted good seats kaya we went early. It paid off naman. We were seated at Row C. Claiming the tickets from Ensogo was super easy. No lines pa at that time. Since we had time to spare, we brought the kids to Jollibee to have lunch and by 1 PM, we went back na and pumasok na kami since the kids were just too excited.

At exactly 2 PM, the show started. Trust the Americans to be always on time. The show lasted for about an hour and a half including the 15-minute intermission. Walang ganap sa intermission except yung mga nagtitinda ng food and souvenirs. They grabbed the opportunity to make a sale talaga. I'm glad na hindi bilmoko si Milo and Pretzel kundi namulubi ako. Hahaha.

I wouldn't go technical with the show. Hindi naman yun ang expertise ko. My sister and I enjoyed the show especially the performance of the front act after the intermission. We both agreed na it's our favorite part. Natuwa lang talaga kami, but I won't tell. No spoilers. The kids enjoyed it so much especially the Toy Story segment. Pretzel loved the Cinderella moment. Talagang smile na smile my own little princess. Feeling ko nai-imagine nya na siya si Cinderella.
Since I got nearly a hundred photos, let me just share yung Toy Story na part na lang.
Pre-show photo ops. Excited to get in. Ayaw na magpa-picture.
Sheriff Woody. Yeehaa!!!
Woody and Jesse
Galing mag-hula hoop ni Jesse.
Buzz Lightyear
Woody's Round-up Gang
"To infinity and beyond."
"Buzz, you've got wings! You glow in the dark! You talk! Your helmet does that, that... *whoosh* thing! You are a cool toy!"
"The claw is our master." - the Martians
I think the Toy Story characters got the loudest rounds of applause.
Post-show photo ops. Ayaw pa din magpa-picture kasi gusto na mag-Playland sa McDo.
This has been a happy day for us and this will definitely not be the last. To end this post, let me share with you the finale of the show. Enjoy!

Friday Five: Shower Caddy

My pink shower caddy. Want to see five random things in it?
 Five Random Things in my Shower Caddy:

Pantene Pro-V Nature Care Conditioner
A Bonne Spa Milk Salt. Don't use after shaving. Hahaha.
Facial washes that I use alternately.

Toothpastes for sensitive teeth and bleeding gums. Parodontax tastes yucky, but it's really effective.
Want to share what's in your caddy?

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Yummy Sunday: Craving for Taclings

 Have you tried this? Taclings is the brand name of new food fad. It is also the name of the food they are offering. It is a dumpling served with taco fillings. Easy to eat. Word of advice from Mr. Pringles, though. "One pop and you can't stop."

Taco + Dumplings = Taclings
Every time we drop by Mezza Norte at UP-Ayala Technohub, I always get this in spite of the blockbuster line. I prefer the original variant. The green tacling is the healthy option. It's malunggay-based and instead of pork, they use tuna. You can have tuna din naman with the original version, but I'm such a carnivore. ;)

Taclings are my current favorite. I can eat them everyday.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Friday Five 02: Books

This is my bookshelf. It was lovingly made by Jowell. This is not my entire book collection. What is shown is only half of what I have. I still have books in my in-laws house in Malabon. For today's Friday Five, let me share with you five random books from my shelf. Enjoy.
The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult
I've started reading it a few months ago, but has not read again ever since. It bored me. Sorry, Jodi. Your previous books were a hit with me, but this one, didn't bring home the bacon.

The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan
Juvenile for my age, but I love young adult books. I only bought this because I thought the ebook copy I had was bitin pero dun pala talaga natapos yung story. Ngayon, OC na ako to buy the complete series. I've read the entire series on ebook already.

The Litigators by John Grisham
I'm a huge Grisham fan and every time a new book of his comes out, I make sure I grab a copy. However, I'm disappointed. His newer books are not as ganda as his older books. Wala na yung suspense ng The Firm.

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Before this, I was reading Anne Rice. I was 12 or 13. In my 30's, now I'm reading/read this. Go, team Jacob! Hahaha.

Kill Alex Cross by James Patterson
I love his work especially the Murder Club series. I've read the 1st to 11th. The Alex Cross series is also good kaya lang parang bawat book iba-iba love interest nya.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Yummy Sunday: Takoyaki at Mezza Norte


I've been eating takoyaki since I was kid. Probably back in the 80's. Samurai pa lang ang uso noon and I immediately fell in love. For those who are not familiar with takoyaki, according to Wikipedia it "is a ball-shaped Japanese snack made of a wheat flour-based batter and cooked in a special takoyaki pan. It is typically filled with minced or diced octopus, tempura scraps (tenkasu), pickled ginger, and green onion. Takoyaki are brushed with takoyaki sauce, a sauce similar to Worcestershire sauce, and mayonnaise. The takoyaki is then sprinkled with green laver (aonori) and shavings of dried bonito (katsuobushi). There are many variations to the takoyaki recipe. For example, ponzu i.e. soy sauce with dashi and citrus vinegar, goma-dare i.e. sesame-and-vinegar sauce or vinegared dashi." Sounds complicated, but it's really not. And if complicated tastes this good, I'd take complicated any time.

Takoyaki at Mezza Norte.

And oh, I'd rather have octopus than balut.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday Five 01: Bags

Five random bags from my bag hanger:

Top: Guess black, leather shoulder bag; Mango brown shoulder bag
Bottom: Ayla light purple shoulder bag; Baby Phat greyish shoulder bag; classic Dooney and Bourke dark brown shoulder bag

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Food Trip A-Z: Cafe by the Ruins

23 Chuntug St.
  Baguio City, Benguet  
(074) 442-4010

Cafe By The Ruins was our last stop before we head back to Manila. My sister, Chelly, for some reason really wanted to eat here. Ako naman is OK lang if we get to eat here or not. Not really on my top list pero since we're in Baguio na din nga naman, might as well try it.

The Corpuz's while waiting for the food.
With Aline - our official Baguio tour guide.
What we ordered:

The descriptions of the food are from None of it are mine.

 Spicy Bangus
Boneless fillet of milkfish, spice-cured and baked in olive oil
Strawberry Shake
Fresh cows milk blended with real strawberries
Shrimp and Mango Curry (This became my instant favorite!)
Prawns in coconut milk curry, served with 7 condiments: hard boiled egg, grated coconut, fried onions, chili, chutney, papadums, and peanuts. Served with rice.

Pinikpikan (No, thank you!)
Cordillera ritual chicken soup with etag (salted pork) and ginger

Strawberry Soda
Cafe strawberry syrup with soda water

Baguio Bounty Salad (Sarap din!!!)
Their classic: shrimp, poached chicken, strawberries, watercress, lettuce with strawberry vinaigrette dressing. For many years now, friends have feasted on this salad.

Baguio Bagnet (The one from Ilocos is always the best.)
A typical Ilocano meal: double fried pork belly - first it is tenderized in lard, then re-fried to a crisp. Condiments are Podas bagoong and tomato relish. Accompanied with Dinengdeng soup.
Although I instantly fell in-love with their Shrimp and Mango Curry, I've had better and more impressive lunches than this. For such a well-known restaurant I was a wee disappointed. There were some items on their menu that we're not available and service was mabagal. While we were seated naman agad-agad, antagal before our orders were taken. It was a busy hour lang talaga siguro. It was a full house. If the number of guests is an indication of how good their food and service are, patok talaga sila.
Would I come back?  Yes, if only for the Shrimp and Mango Curry. Mas babalik pa ko sa Cafe Will.
Our Baguio adventure was short and sweet. It was spur of the moment. We had fun and one day I'll go back again with my husband and the kids. Until then, Baguio. See you soon.
Full and ready to go home.

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